30+ Years of Freedom of Information Action

Secrecy and FOIA

Jul 4, 2001 | Briefing Book
Washington, D.C., July 4, 2001 – George Washington University's National Security Archive, the leading non-profit user of the U.S. Freedom of Information Act, today released its first annual "State of Freedom of Information" report, 35 years to the day after President Johnson grudgingly signed the U.S. FOIA into law on July 4, 1966.  The Archive study reported that: 
Jun 5, 2001 | Briefing Book
Washington, D.C., June 5, 2001 – Thirty years ago this month, President Nixon picked up his Sunday New York Times on June 13, 1971 to see the wedding picture of his daughter Tricia and himself in the Rose Garden, leading the left-hand side of the front page.  Next to that picture, on the right, was the headline over Neil Sheehan's first story on the Pentagon Papers, "Vietnam Archive: Pentagon Study Traces 3 Decades of Growing U.S. Involvement."  Nixon did not read the story (so he says on tape in his 12:18 p.m. phone call with Alexander Haig).
Apr 12, 2001 | Briefing Book
One of the major primary sources for research on the history of U.S.
Nov 13, 2000 | News
Washington D.C.: The National Security Archive today hailed the release of more than 16,000 secret U.S. records on the Pinochet dictatorship in Chile, and Washington’s role in the violent overthrow of the Allende government and the advent of the military regime to power. The release, totaling over 50,000 pages of State Department, CIA, White House, Defense and Justice Department records, represents the fourth and final “tranche” of the Clinton Administration’s special Chile Declassification Project.
Oct 24, 2000 | News
Washington D.C.: Under pressure from the Clinton White House and human rights groups, the CIA has agreed to release more than 700 documents on covert operations in Chile that the Directorate of Operations had refused to declassify last August, according to the non-profit foreign policy center, the National Security Archive. The CIA documents have already been turned over to the Department of State for final processing and are slated to be publicly released on November 13.
Sep 29, 2000 | News
Pending in the Senate is a proposal to enact an “Official Secrets Act” for the United States. Section 303 of the Intelligence Authorization Act of 2001, S. 2507, would make it a crime for government employees to disclose classified information to the public. The proposal is unconstitutional. In violation of the First Amendment, it would stifle informed public debate about the most serious matters of national defense and foreign policy.
Aug 17, 2000 | News
Context On February 1st, 1999, the Clinton White House ordered the U.S. national security agencies to “retrieve and review for declassification documents that shed light on human rights abuses, terrorism, and other acts of political violence in Chile” from 1968-1990--a policy initiative taken after the arrest of General Augusto Pinochet in London.
Aug 8, 2000 | News
WASHINGTON D.C., 8 August – U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly has overruled the CIA’s claim that it can neither confirm or deny the existence of CIA-prepared biographies of nine former Communist leaders of Eastern European countries, seven of whom are now dead. The judge last week granted the National Security Archive’s motion for partial summary judgment against the CIA’s “Glomar” claim, named after a lawsuit over the ship Glomar Explorer in which the courts allowed the CIA neither to confirm or deny information sought under the Freedom of Information Act.
Jul 17, 2000 | Briefing Book
Washington, D.C., July 17, 2000 – On July 13, 2000 the Senate passed a measure in the FY 2001 Defense Authorization Act that – if approved by the full Congress – would severely undercut the public's ability to obtain critical human rights information gathered by U.S. defense attachйs (DATT) and other U.S. military representatives abroad. The provision would exempt from release under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) the "operational files" of the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA).
Jun 29, 2000 | News
From:  Center for National Security Studies, Federation of American Scientists, National Security Archive Re:  Freedom of Information Act Exemption for Defense Intelligence Agency Files in S. 2549, Defense Authorization Act.

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