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In an era where privacy and civil liberties debate sit at the forefront of global discourse, a revelation about the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) operating an encrypted phone company called Anom, popular among organized criminals, has sparked intrigue and controversy. Dating back to 2019, this covert initiative played an instrumental role in a massive international law enforcement operation in June 2021. However, behind this significant step towards cracking down on crime, lie questions about legality, data privacy and the grey area of international cooperation in such operations.

The operation was ingeniously designed. Aware of its inability to sift through the colossal amount of data generated by Anom due to legal constraints, the FBI ingeniously collaborated with a third country, later revealed to be Lithuania. Keeping this partnership confidential at Lithuania's request, they set up an Anom interception server, which enabled authorized Lithuanian agents to access messages sent through the platform.

This unique collaborative arrangement, previously veiled in secrecy, facilitated one of the most productive law enforcement sting operations in recent history, resulting in globally coordinated arrests of multiple criminal Anom users.

However, this revelation has also gone down like a lead balloon, eliciting concern about crossing lines of legality and discomforting issues of privacy. Defense attorneys in the United States are now questioning the lawfulness of the evidence harvested. They argue the necessity to identify Lithuania, the third nation involved, in a bid to scrutinize the 'arm’s length' approach adopted by the Feds to bypass its own domestic legal constraints.

The U.S. government, on its side, has persistently declined to confirm Lithuania's involvement, leading to intense debates about government transparency, international alliances, and criminal justice.

Looking forward, this event sets a significant precedent that could reshape future investigative operations, laying forth an intricate path of alliances, technological savvy, and strategic legality. It sends an unequivocal signal to organized crime networks worldwide and perhaps 'disrupts their peace' over encrypted communication methods.

On the flip side, it forces us to scrutinize the balance we strike between chasing wrongdoers used technology and preserving the fundamental privacy rights in the digital age. It makes us question – will the ends justify the means when it comes to surveillance and encroachment on privacy for the sake of national or international security? And how transparent should governments be in their pursuit of law enforcement?

In essence, this saga has taken the concept of international cooperation in crime fighting into new territories, including those that teeter on the edges of legality and privacy, shaping an uncharted future for law enforcement and rights advocacy.