30+ Years of Freedom of Information Action

Armed Forces and Military Strategy

Aug 13, 2018 | Briefing Book
Washington, D.C., August 13, 2018 – U.S. Cyber Command’s strategy for curtailing ISIL’s ability to exploit the internet may at least partially be paying off, according to an analysis of recently declassified documents posted today by the nongovernmental National Security Archive. The new documents, obtained under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) by Motherboard and the Archive, center around Operation GLOWING SYMPHONY, a USCYBERCOM activity authorized in late 2016 to deny the Islamic State use of the internet.

Mar 20, 2018 | News
USCYBERCOM has put flesh on the bones of its skeletal strategy declaration initially released in February 2018.  A month later, on March 23, the Command made public a new, 12-page “Command Vision” that substantially expands on the earlier paper (posted below).  Several analysts have already remarked on its significance.  For example, Richard J. Harknett at the University of Cincinnati, who was consulted on the new approach, writes in Lawfare that it “marks a significant evolution in cyber operations and strategic thinking.” 

Jan 24, 2018 | News
Cyberspace strategy for Strategic Command

Apr 4, 2017 | Blog Post
The following was published in Survival: Global Politics and Strategy (Vol 59 No 2). War Scare Sir, In ‘Able Archer 83: What Were the Soviets Thinking’ (Survival, vol. 58, no. 6, December 2016–January 2017, pp. 7–30), Gordon Barrass makes a compelling argument that Able Archer 83 provides ‘lessons on how to analyse and respond to […]

Feb 15, 2017 | Briefing Book
Washington, D.C. February 15, 2017 – The Air Force chief of staff told the Joint Chiefs at a September 1971 meeting that in a nuclear war the United States “could lose two hundred million people and still have more than we had at the time of the Civil War.” The quote comes from a recently declassified and highly revealing diary entry by JCS Chairman Thomas Moorer, published today for the first time by the National Security Archive at The George Washington University. The other chiefs did not challenge Gen.

Sep 30, 2016 | Briefing Book
Washington D.C., September 30, 2016 – The unilateral nuclear withdrawals announced by President George H.W. Bush 25 years ago this week drew an eager response from Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev to produce what experts call “the most spontaneous and dramatic reversal” ever of the nuclear arms race, according to newly declassified documents from Soviet and U.S. files posted today by the National Security Archive to mark the anniversary of the Bush initiative.

Jan 26, 2016 | News
Washington, D.C., January 26, 2016 - The National Security Archive mourns the passing of Gen. William Y. Smith, one of the Archive's original board members and longest supporters, on January 19, 2016. Gen. Smith helped form the original advisory board of the Archive in the 1980s, served on the audit committee of the Archive's Board of Directors from 1999 to 2016, and played an instrumental role in multiple Archive projects, including conferences in Havana and Hanoi that dramatically re-wrote the histories of the Cuban Missile Crisis and the Vietnam War. As a young military aide, Gen.

Apr 28, 2015 | Briefing Book
Washington, D.C., April 28, 2015 – President Lyndon Johnson regretted sending U.S. troops into the Dominican Republic in 1965, telling aides less than a month later, "I don't want to be an intervenor," according to new transcripts of White House tapes published today (along with the tapes themselves) for the first time by the National Security Archive at George Washington University (www.nsarchive.org). Johnson ordered U.S. Marines into Santo Domingo 50 years ago today.

Oct 1, 2014 | Briefing Book
Washington, DC, October 1, 2014 – Secretary of State Henry Kissinger ordered a series of secret contingency plans that included airstrikes and mining of Cuban harbors in the aftermath of Fidel Castro's decision to send Cuban forces into Angola in late 1975, according to declassified documents made public today for the first time. "If we decide to use military power it must succeed.

Sep 16, 2014 | Briefing Book
Selected as a "Best History Book of the Month" - Amazon Washington, DC, September 16, 2014 – The Predator drone, though best known as the CIA's primary weapon in the war against Al Qaeda, was merely an unarmed, remote-control intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft when the Defense Department first bought it in 1994. As detailed in Richard Whittle's Predator: The Secret Origins of the Drone Revolution (Henry Holt and Company, September 16, 2014), the Predator's configuration was derived from drones developed in the 1980s by former Israeli aeronautical engineer Abraham Karem.

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