First phone-tapping, then the dark art of illegal surveillance
We know the US authorities monitor communications of millions of people -- including Ms Merkel
Michael Noonan in 1983, when Justice Minister in a Fine Gael-Labour coalition, ordered a huge trawl to discover whether unauthorised telephone tapping was widespread.
His action followed one of the most sensational events of the "GUBU era" under a Fianna Fail-led government headed by Charles J Haughey. It had emerged that his predecessor as Justice Minister, Sean Doherty, had authorised the tapping of two prominent journalists' phones, Bruce Arnold's and Geraldine Kennedy's, between March and November 1982.