The boisterous run-up to the European parliament vote last month leaves no doubt about the leading role played by German MEPs of all political persuasions in killing the EU-US SWIFT agreement on bank-data sharing for counter-terror purposes. In light of the recent purchase by German tax authorities of stolen Swiss bank data, the German opposition to SWIFT suggests that while it is good for Germany to violate a bank client’s expectation of confidentiality in the name of combating tax evasion, it is bad for the United States to do the same in the name of combating terrorism.
But what is perhaps most startling about the German opposition is the seemingly total indifference of the opponents to the reality of terrorist financing and the threat that European Jihadist networks represent. This indifference is all the more striking inasmuch as Germany itself has been a major hub of Jihadist activism and terror financing.
See my new article in The Weekly Standard here.