30+ Years of Freedom of Information Action

Middle East

Dec 6, 2016 | Briefing Book
Washington, D.C., December 8, 2016 - A CIA-sponsored panel of well-respected scientists concluded that a mysterious flash detected by a U.S. Vela satellite over the South Atlantic on the night of 22 September 1979 was likely a nuclear test, according to a contemporaneous report published today for the first time by the National Security Archive and the Nuclear Proliferation International History Project.  

Nov 25, 2016 | Briefing Book
Washington, D.C., November 25, 2016 – Exactly thirty years ago, President Ronald Reagan announced to the nation – after weeks of denials – that members of his White House staff had engaged in a web of covert intrigue linking illicit U.S. support for a guerrilla war in Central America with an illegal and politically explosive arms-for-hostages bargain with the Islamic Republic of Iran. The revelation quickly led to a new phrase – “Iran-Contra” – which became synonymous with political hubris, government incompetence, and dishonesty in the public sphere.

Jun 23, 2016 | Briefing Book
Washington DC, June 23, 2016 – Recently discovered British documents posted today by the National Security Archive provide a new and revealing account of the CIA’s role in a top-secret plan to ravage the Middle East oil industry. It’s been 67 years since President Harry Truman approved NSC 26/2 to keep the Soviet military from using Middle East petroleum if it invaded the region. This denial policy called for American and British oil companies in the Middle East to disable or destroy oil facilities and equipment, and plug the region’s oil wells.

Apr 21, 2016 | Briefing Book
Washington, D.C., April 21, 2016 - President John F Kennedy worried that Israel’s nuclear program was a potentially serious proliferation risk and insisted that Israel permit periodic inspections to mitigate the danger, according to declassified documents published today by the National Security Archive, Nuclear Proliferation International History Project, and the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies.  Kennedy pressured the government

Sep 15, 2015 | Briefing Book
Related Materials The Lessons of Anwar al-Awlaki Four years after the United States assassinated the radical cleric in a drone strike, his influence on jihadists is greater than ever. Was there a better way to stop him? The New York Times Magazine, August 27, 2015   About the Book: "Scott Shane has done a masterful job of fleshing out the missing link in the evolution of Al Qaeda."  Lawrence Wright

Aug 19, 2015 | Briefing Book
Washington, D.C., August 19, 2015 – President Gerald Ford was "offended" and Secretary of State Henry Kissinger "almost blind with rage" over Israeli negotiating behavior in 1975, according to newly released Kissinger telephone transcripts obtained through a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit and posted today by the National Security Archive.

Jul 14, 2015 | Briefing Book
Washington, D.C., July 14, 2015 -- Four decades ago -- in the mid-1970s -- U.S. and Iranian officials haggled over a range of concerns that uncannily prefigured similar clashes that surfaced prior to today’s history-making nuclear accord between the P5+1 governments and Iran, according to documents posted today by the National Security Archive at www.nsarchive.org. The documents from the 1970s record the Shah of Iran’s insistence that his country had “rights” under the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) to develop such a program.

Apr 15, 2015 | Briefing Book
Washington, D.C., April 15, 2015 – The U.S. government first learned of Israel's secret nuclear program at Dimona from an American corporate official talking to U.S. diplomats in Tel Aviv during mid-summer 1960, according to a declassified document published today for the first time by the National Security Archive, the Nuclear Proliferation International History Project, and the Center for Nonproliferation Studies of the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey. Other documents published today detail the discovery of the secret project that some in the U.S.

Feb 23, 2015 | Briefing Book
Washington, DC, February 23, 2015 –Documents posted for the first time — in a collaboration between the National Security Archive and VICE News — provide insight into the U.S. government's paradoxical and opportunistic relationship with arms dealer Sarkis Soghanalian, whose larger-than-life deals were so well known that he was an inspiration for Nicholas Cage's character Yuri Orlov in the 2005 film, Lord of War.

Pages