30+ Years of Freedom of Information Action

United States and Canada

Nov 4, 2010 | News
Washington D.C., November 4, 2010 – President Obama’s new Executive Order on “Controlled Unclassified Information” issued today builds on recommendations from open government groups and the findings of the National Security Archive’s 2006 audit of “Pseudo-Secrets” that uncovered 28 different and uncoordinated policies on marking and restricting official unclassified information.
Aug 11, 2010 | Briefing Book
Washington, D.C., August 11, 2010 - The next nuclear policy challenge for the Obama administration, right after Senate action on the New START Treaty, will be Senate ratification of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), which President Obama sees as a condition for a world free of nuclear weapons. As he declared in his Hradcany Square speech, "After more than five decades of talks, it is time for the testing of nuclear weapons to finally be banned." Most U.S. presidents since Dwight D.
Jul 29, 2010 | News
Washington, DC, July 29, 2010 - National Security Archive Director Tom Blanton made a guest appearance on “The Colbert Report” on Comedy Central on Tuesday, July 27, to discuss Wikileaks’ release of over 90,000 Secret documents on the war in Afghanistan. Blanton told Stephen that the alleged leaker of the documents may just be applying the “Facebook mentality” to classified documents. The day before, Blanton visited Washington radio talk show host Kojo Nnamdi (WAMU 88.5 FM) for a – somewhat more serious – conversation about the implications of the leak.
Jun 16, 2010 | Briefing Book
Washington, D.C., June 16, 2010 - U.S. presidents long before President Obama have sought an international fissile material cutoff off treaty but the reasons they have failed remain with us today, according to declassified documents posted today by the National Security Archive. The proposed treaty would cut off the worldwide production of fissile material--plutonium and highly-enriched uranium--for nuclear weapons. (Note 1) According to Dwight D.
Mar 15, 2010 | Briefing Book, FOIA Audit
Washington, DC, March 15, 2010 - Despite President Barack Obama's and Attorney General Eric Holder's 2009 memoranda calling for reform in government agencies' administration of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), the latest government-wide FOIA Audit released today by the National Security Archive at George Washington University found: Ancient requests--as old as 18 years--still persist in the FOIA system. A minority of agencies have responded to the Obama and Holder Memos with concrete changes in their FOIA practices.
Mar 12, 2010 | News, Rosemary Award
Washington, DC, March 12, 2010 - The Rosemary Award for worst open government performance, named after President Nixon’s secretary who erased 18 Ѕ minutes of a crucial Watergate tape, this year goes to the Federal Chief Information Officers Council, the senior federal officials (responsible for $71 billion a year of IT purchases) who have never addressed the failure of the government to save its e-mail electronically, according to the citation today by the National Security Archive (www.nsarchive.org).
Jan 15, 2010 | Briefing Book
Washington, D.C., January 15, 2010 - To refute early 1960s novels and Hollywood films like Fail-Safe and Dr. Strangelove which raised questions about U.S. control over nuclear weapons, the Air Force produced a documentary film--"SAC [Strategic Air Command] Command Post"--to demonstrate its responsiveness to presidential command and its tight control over nuclear weapons.
Dec 18, 2009 | Briefing Book
Washington, D.C., December 18, 2009 - The challenges facing President Obama in the Copenhagen climate negotiations this week directly parallel the domestic and diplomatic constraints that troubled the Clinton administration more than a decade ago in the Kyoto talks, according to internal U.S. government documents from 1997 obtained through the Freedom of Information Act and posted on the Web today by the National Security Archive.
Dec 14, 2009 | News
Washington, DC, December 14, 2009 - The National Security Archive (the Archive), Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, the White House and the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) today entered into an agreement setting forth general principles that will resolve the missing White House e-mail lawsuit filed first by the Archive in September 2007. "We commend the Obama Administration for making a strong effort to clean up the electronic data mess left behind by the prior administration," commented Sheila Shadmand, counsel for the Archive from Jones Day.
Sep 30, 2009 | News
Washington, DC, September 30, 2009 - At a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing today on “Advancing Freedom of Information in the New Era of Responsibility,” Archive General Counsel Meredith Fuchs reported on improvements in FOIA processing since the 2007 FOIA amendments went into effect, but said the most recent statistics demonstrated that excessive backlogs still plague the system. Citing requests as old as 17 years, Ms. Fuchs asked the Committee to look closely at FY 2009 data when it is reported to determine whether anything has improved. Ms.

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