30+ Years of Freedom of Information Action

Secrecy and FOIA

Jun 2, 2017 | Briefing Book
Washington, D.C., June 2, 2017 – The Ford administration came close to igniting a constitutional showdown with Congress more than 40 years ago over demands by a House panel known as the Pike Committee for evidence of possible abuses by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). At the height of congressional pushback against the “imperial presidency” in the mid-1970s, Representative Otis G.

Jun 2, 2017 | Blog Post
The Trump Administration reportedly is returning copies of the Senate Intelligence Committee’s report on the CIA’s torture program to Congress. The pernicious move, which would effectively hide the report from FOIA and public scrutiny, comes after years of FOIA lawsuits to win access to the historically significant document and hold accountable those responsible for torture. […]

Jun 1, 2017 | Blog Post
Pollard’s Parole Restrictions Will Not be Laxed A federal appeals court rejected Jonathan Pollard’s petition to ease his parole requirements and reasserted that it acted within its rights to require Pollard to wear an electronic tracking device. Pollard is a former Navy intelligence analyst convicted of spying for Israel in 1985 and who was granted […]

May 25, 2017 | Blog Post
SCOTUS Won’t Hear Mugshots Case, Keeping Federal Mugshots Secret The Supreme Court left a July 2016 6th Circuit Court of Appeals ruling, which says that federal mugshots don’t need to be released under the FOIA, in place this week. Last July the appeals court ruled en banc against the Detroit Free Press and against the status quo, determining […]

May 4, 2017 | Blog Post
Newly declassified documents demonstrate the continuing haphazard application of United States secrecy regulations. The progress of declassification remains a one step forward-two steps back dance, with authorities responsible for the release of records misapplying applicable regulations, laws, and secrecy guidelines. Today’s illustration of this resides in a recently-declassified history of United States policy toward unrest […]

May 4, 2017 | Blog Post
Anonymous Phone Call Threatens Violence if Bankruptcy Lawyer Keeps Bothering Trump; FBI “Inadvertently” Claims Call Investigation Still Ongoing in Response to Records Request FOIA releases from the FBI raise new questions about President Trump’s business tactics, particularly when things were not going his way. The FOIA responses – to Buzzfeed’s Jason Leopold and MIT’s Ryan […]

Apr 27, 2017 | Blog Post
The CIA’s Homosexual Investigations In 1980, the same year the Democratic Party endorsed a gay-rights platform, the CIA issued a three-page memo on how to “ferret out” homosexuals during investigations, possibly for blackmail. MuckRock recently published the memo as part of a post of the CIA’s cringe-worthy (and insulting) practices and assumptions about the LGBT […]

Apr 20, 2017 | Blog Post
Deported DREAMer Files FOIA Suit for Info; Kelly Tells DHS Critics to “Shut Up” And Assume Agency Following Law Juan Manuel Montes, 23, was brought to the United States from Mexico by his parents 14 years ago and is protected under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program; he is also believed to be […]

Apr 19, 2017 | Blog Post
Below are the National Security Archive’s comments on the Office of Government Information Services’ (OGIS) reviews and reports, submitted in anticipation of OGIS’s public meeting, tomorrow, 4/20, at 9 in the U.S. National Archive’s McGowan Theater.  Thank you for holding your annual meeting with the public and soliciting comments on OGIS’s reviews and reports, in […]

Apr 18, 2017 | Blog Post
The Interagency Security Classification Appeals Panel (ISCAP) has justifiably acquired a good reputation for its fairness in making final decisions on mandatory declassification review (MDR) appeals for national security information.  During the course of its existence since 1996, through FY 2015 it reviewed over 2400 documents and released more information from over 1800 of them, with […]