35+ Years of Freedom of Information Action

Malcolm Byrne

Deputy Director; Research Director
US-Iran; Iran-Contra Affair; US-Soviet & East Europe; cybersecurity; terrorism

Malcolm Byrne, Deputy Director and Director of Research, has worked at the Archive since 1986, and since 1990 has supervised the research process of identifying and obtaining documentation for the Archive's collections. He also currently directs the U.S.-Iran Relations Project, which promotes multinational and multi-archival approaches to the study of recent, controversial historical events. Previously, he served as co-director of the Iran-Contra documentation project, and coordinated the Archive's project on U.S.-Soviet relations during the Cold War. Among other activities, he has helped to organize major international conferences of former political adversaries on U.S.-Iran relations; the collapse of U.S.-Soviet détente; Cold War crises in Eastern Europe; and the Vietnam War.

His latest book, Iran-Contra: Reagan's Scandal and the Unchecked Abuse of Presidential Power (Kansas, 2014; paperback, 2017), was selected by Choice Magazine as an "Outstanding Academic Title." Among his other authored and edited books are The Chronology (Warner Books, 1987), The Iran-Contra Scandal: The Declassified History (The New Press, 1993), The 1956 Hungarian Revolution: A History in Documents (CEU Press, 2002), the award-winning Mohammad Mosaddeq and the 1953 Coup in Iran (Syracuse, 2004), and Becoming Enemies: U.S.-Iran Relations and the Iran-Iraq War, 1979-1988 Rowman & Littlefield, 2012).

He is editor of "The National Security Archive Cold War Reader" series through CEU Press and co-editor of the "Digital National Security Archive” series through ProQuest. His articles and reviews have been published in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, The Christian Science Monitor, Newsweek, The Daily Beast, Politico, Foreign Policy Online, Columbia Journalism Review, Dissent, Cold War History, the Journal of Cold War Studies, Iranian Studies ,Middle East Report, The Beirut Review, the Cold War International History Project Bulletin, Sources and Methods, and other publications. He has appeared frequently on national and international television and radio broadcasts, taught courses in history at The George Washington University, and has lectured at a number of universities.

He is an Editorial Board member of H-DIPLO, the diplomatic historians' listserv, a Scholarly Advisory Board member of the Gilder Lehrman Insitute of American History, and since 2006 has been a Research Affiliate at MIT's Center for International Studies. In 2006, he was a History and Public Policy Scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. Prior to joining the Archive, he was Assistant Editor for News Systems at The Washington Post, and an editor of Soviet/East European Report. He is a graduate of Tufts University and earned an M.A. in Soviet studies and economics at Johns Hopkins / SAIS. In 1977, he taught English language and metaphysical poetry at the Jagiellonian University in Krakow, Poland.

In the Media

Why America and Iran hate each other
Jan 4, 2020
The National Interest
Oct 7, 2019
The Washington Post
Oct 17, 2017
Tehran Times
Aug 19, 2017
Oct 31, 2016
The Wall Street Journal
Oct 3, 2014
The Detroit News
Aug 29, 2013
The Weekly Standard
Aug 21, 2013
The Guardian
Aug 19, 2013
The New York Times
May 14, 2005