Opposing militaries and governments are legitimate intelligence targets
Despite the ideas of some government leaders and militaries, exceptionalism, whether by the USA or USSR, er Putin's Russia, is simply hypocrisy by rogue states. The only exceptional thing about these countries are that they are more rogue than most.
Opposing militaries and governments are legitimate intelligence targets. Angela Merkel may think she is the only German citizen who deserves privacy, but I have no problem with opposing governments spying on our government or our government spying on opposing governments.
Spying on allied militaries and governments is debatable, but it ultimately depending on what is mutually agreed. If we can spy on them, then they can spy on us.
It is the definition of hypocrisy for us to complain about them doing to us what we do to them.
However, the peaceful civilian population of ones own country is NOT a legitimate intelligence target.
It is not legitimate for Russia to spy on peaceful Russians. Likewise it is not legitimate for our governments to spy on our peaceful citizens.
How are western countries to ever hope to maintain democracies once their intelligence 'services' have transformed them into Chekist states, states where the intelligence agencies can blackmail, er uh, 'successfully intimidate' every prospective politician.