Digital National Security Archive
Donald Rumsfeld’s “snowflakes” are a unique resource, coming directly from the Defense Secretary’s desk. This first tranche provides unprecedented insight into the workings of the Pentagon during the early years of the Bush administration. The collection offers glimpses into Rumsfeld’s day-to-day concerns covering everything from relations with Russia, China, and other nations to DOD’s strategy and conduct in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq to communications with the White House and battles with the Pentagon bureaucracy.
The second in our series on the PDBs, this compilation reproduces the CIA’s highest-level briefings for both the Nixon and Ford presidencies. Covering a critical period in the Cold War, it provides insights into détente with the Soviet Union, the breakthrough with China, the Arab-Israel conflict, and other world-changing events of the day.
Published in December 2019 during the 40th anniversary year of the overthrow of the U.S.-backed Shah of Iran and onset of the hostage crisis in 1979, this collection traces all facets of a highly unusual global relationship from its darkest periods to the landmark signing of the controversial nuclear accord in 2015.
Upcoming Collection in 2021
Donald Rumsfeld's Snowflakes, Part II: The Pentagon and U.S. Foreign Policy, 2004-2006
The product of a National Security Archive Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit, this collection is the second of a two-part series that will publish every existing “snowflake” memo Donald Rumsfeld circulated during his tenure as Secretary of Defense to President George W. Bush – over 59,000 pages in all. (Part I appeared in late 2020, Part 2 will follow later in 2021.) These unvarnished internal memos offer an extraordinary schematic of U.S. defense and national security policy from a tumultuous period, as well as insights into one of the Bush administration’s more memorable characters.
For publication in 2021-2023
- Targeting Iraq, Part II: Occupation, Surge, and ISIS, 2004-2017
- MKUltra: CIA Mind Control Experiments, 1953-1973
- Environmental Diplomacy: U.S. Policy and Climate Change, 1981-2017
- CIA Covert Operations, Part IV: From Truman to Eisenhower, 1945-1961
- The Afghanistan War and the United States, 1998-2017