35+ Years of Freedom of Information Action

Political Crimes and Abuse of Power

Jan 13, 2021 | Briefing Book, Sourcebook
Washington, D.C., January 13, 2021 - The Pentagon’s timeline of its response to the January 6, 2021 mob attack on the U.S. Capitol features multiple discrepancies with the public record, while the first federal indictment of mob participants details the specific legal charges that likely will be brought against others, according to the documents in the National Security Archive’s first "January 6 Sourcebook" posted today. The Sourcebook, subtitled “documents you should read,” includes:

Dec 1, 2020 | News
Washington, D.C., Dec. 1, 2020 – The National Security Archive, the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations, the American Historical Association, and the Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington today filed suit against President Donald Trump in his official capacity, seeking to enforce the Presidential Records Act and prevent any destruction of records during the presidential transition.

Oct 22, 2020 | Briefing Book
Washington D.C., October 22, 2020 - On October 23, 1970, one day after armed thugs intercepted and mortally wounded the Chilean army commander-in-chief, General Rene Schneider, as he drove to work in Santiago, CIA Director Richard Helms convened his top aides to review the covert coup operations that had led to the attack.

Jun 25, 2020 | Briefing Book
Washington, DC, June 25, 2020 — Portions of a long-secret government blueprint for expansive surveillance of domestic protest movements during the Nixon presidency have just been released, more than 50 years after it was drafted.  The notorious “Huston Plan” prepared by representatives of the White House and the U.S. intelligence community envisioned a smorgasbord of covert operations that made even FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover queasy. The proposed activities ranged from monitoring domestic dissident groups — notably the Black Panthers — to office break-ins.

Jun 19, 2020 | News
Washington, D.C., June 19, 2020 – As President Trump escalates attempts to quash publication of former National Security Adviser John Bolton’s book, The Room Where it Happened, on the grounds that it still “contains classified information,”  the National Security Archive today posted documentation on previous cases of “prepublication review” dating back to the 1970s that cast doubt on the admi

Jun 4, 2020 | Briefing Book
Washington, D.C., June 4, 2020 - To mark the 31st anniversary of the massacre at Beijing’s Tiananmen Square, June 4, 1989, the National Security Archive today reposts its special exhibit of declassified documentation on an event that has decisively shaped contemporary China – and that just in the past week has unexpectedly gained salience for the United States.  

May 18, 2020 | News
Washington, D.C., May 18, 2020 – The 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals today ruled against the National Security Archive’s lawsuit to restore the routine disclosure, under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), of the White House visitor logs that were taken down by the Trump administration in early 2017.

Feb 22, 2019 | Briefing Book
Washington D.C., February 22, 2019 – The movie VICE, nominated for eight Academy Awards including the best picture Oscar, shows on screen several documents obtained through the Freedom of Information Act. Those documents relate to then-Vice President Dick Cheney’s meetings with oil company lobbyists discussing potential drilling in Iraq. But at least a dozen other declassified records deserve screen time before Sunday’s Oscars show, according to the National Security Archive’s publication today of primary sources from Cheney’s checkered career.

Feb 7, 2019 | Briefing Book
Washington, DC, February 7, 2019 – Attorney-General nominee William P. Barr figured prominently in arguments to limit CIA responsibility to provide notification to Congress about covert actions during the 1980s, according to a review of declassified materials published today by the National Security Archive at the George Washington University.

Oct 5, 2018 | Briefing Book
Washington D.C., October 5, 2018 – On the 30th anniversary of the historic plebiscite in Chile, the National Security Archive today posted key documents revealing General Augusto Pinochet’s secret plans to “use violence and terror” to annul the October 5, 1988, referendum and sustain his dictatorship in power.  The Pinochet plot was thwarted when key officials of his own regime revealed it to U.S.

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