July 5, 2013
The National Security Agency has long been active in Germany, though much of its spying was conducted against the Eastern Bloc during the Cold War. Today, former listening stations and other facilities dot the German landscape.
Tracking down traces of the National Security Agency in Germany isn’t particularly difficult. One merely has to head to Berlin and look for the city’s highest point. It can be found in the southwest corner of the city — Teufeslberg, or “Devil’s Mountain.” Made of piled up rubble gathered from Berlin following World War II, the “mountain” rises 115 meters (377 feet) above the nearby waterway known as the Havel.
In the winter, it is the place where Berliners meet to sled; in the summer it is a haven for mountain bikers and daytrippers. And hobby historians: At the very top of the hill stands the most famous NSA relict in Germany — five gigantic white radar balls. The listening station was used until the end of the Cold War, primarily to spy on the east.