30+ Years of Freedom of Information Action

Secrecy and FOIA

Oct 4, 2019 | News
Washington D.C., October 4, 2019 — U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson yesterday ordered the White House to preserve all records relating to meetings and phone calls with foreign leaders, as well as all records on White House practices and policies for creating and keeping such records.

Oct 2, 2019 | News
Washington, D.C., October 2, 2019 – The Justice Department has pledged that the White House will preserve records of President Trump’s conversations with foreign heads of state while a federal judge considers a lawsuit under the Presidential Records Act (PRA).

Oct 1, 2019 | News
Washington D.C., October 1, 2019 – The National Security Archive together with Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) and the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations (SHAFR) today filed a motion in federal court for a temporary restraining order to compel the White House to preserve records of foreign leader phone calls and meetings with the president, and records of White House record-keeping practices and policies.

Aug 2, 2019 | News
Washington D.C., August 2, 2019 - The Secret Service has just released nearly 150 heavily-redacted pages concerning a Chinese delegation’s visit to President Trump’s winter White House, Mar-a-Lago, in April 2017.

Jun 20, 2019 | Blog Post
Proposed CIA Exemption Will Make It Harder for Historians to get Agency Information   A provision in the pending intelligence authorization bill would allow the CIA to indefinitely withhold information on “the identities of all undercover intelligence officers, and United States citizens whose relationship to the United States is classified, regardless of the location of […]

Jun 13, 2019 | Blog Post
Emails Released through FOIA Show Special Relationship between Transportation Dept. and State of Kentucky FOIA-released records obtained by American Oversight and provided to Politico illuminate how Transportation Department Secretary Elaine Chao prioritizes requests from Kentucky – home state of her husband and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. Specifically, the department established a special liaison, Chao’s […]

Jun 6, 2019 | Blog Post
Year after year, the Department of Justice’s Office of Information Policy (OIP) issues a summary of annual agency FOIA reports that misinterprets FOIA performance across the federal government to the point the report’s main conclusions are unreliable, and this year is no different. OIP’s mandate is to “encourage” government-wide FOIA compliance – an important step […]

May 30, 2019 | Blog Post
Trump Memo “Effectively Amends” EO 13526 to Transfer Limited DNI Authority to AG Barr President Trump recently signed a presidential memo that “effectively amends” Executive Order 13526 on classification of national security information to grant Attorney General William Barr the “authority of the Director of National Intelligence to declassify intelligence information concerning the 2016 election.” […]

May 23, 2019 | Blog Post
FOIA Shows Sailors Created “Rape List” That CO Failed to Properly Address A FOIA request from Military.com won the release of a 74-page investigation into a “rape list” created by members of the USS Florida’s Gold Crew – the second submarine to integrate women. The report found “Navy leaders failed to address sailors’ safety concerns after […]

May 16, 2019 | Blog Post
Trump’s Secrecy will “Blast a Huge Crater” in work of Historians if not Checked The Washington Post Editorial Board weighed in on the National Security Archive’s lawsuit against the Trump administration for failing to document meetings with heads of state, noting “The failure to document these meetings is not only about compliance with the law. […]

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