30+ Years of Freedom of Information Action

Middle East

Jan 17, 2013 | Briefing Book
Washington, DC, January 17, 2013 – The poster for the blockbuster movie Zero Dark Thirty features black lines of redaction over the title, which unintentionally illustrate the most accurate take-away from the film - that most of the official record of the hunt for Osama bin Laden is still shrouded in secrecy, according to the National Security Archive's ZD30 briefing book, posted today at www.nsarchive.org. The U.S.

Dec 21, 2012 | Briefing Book
Washington, D.C., December 21, 2012 – On December 12, 1979, the Soviet Politburo gathered to formally approve the decision made several days earlier to send a "limited contingent" of Soviet forces into Afghanistan. The secrecy was so tight that the leadership hand-wrote the authorization document in one copy and hand-carried it to each Politburo member for signature. The order does not even mention Afghanistan by name and uses cryptic language to entrust Andropov, Ustinov and Gromyko to oversee the implementation of the decision.

Dec 14, 2012 | Briefing Book
Washington, DC, December 14, 2012 – When Naval Investigative Service analyst Jonathan Pollard spied for Israel in 1984 and 1985, his Israeli handlers asked primarily for nuclear, military and technical information on the Arab states, Pakistan, and the Soviet Union – not on the United States – according to the newly-declassified CIA 1987 damage assessment of the Pollard case, published today by the National Security Archive at George Washington University (www.nsarchive.org).

Nov 6, 2012 | Briefing Book
Washington, D.C., November 6, 2012 – The U.S. intelligence community predicted India's nuclear bomb in 1964 but mistakenly concluded Israel had "not yet decided" to go nuclear, according to newly declassified documents posted today by the National Security Archive and the Nuclear Proliferation International History Project.

Oct 12, 2012 | Briefing Book
Advance Praise for Becoming Enemies For those seeking to understand the roots of modern enmity between the U.S. and Iran, Becoming Enemies is a truly unique and wonderful resource. — Karim Sadjadpour, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace A fascinating, eye-opening book. — Haleh Esfandiari, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars Becoming Enemies provides a profound understanding ... [and] a fascinating story ... a rare "fly-on-the-wall" perspective on how ... the United States got itself into the mess it is in today in the Persian Gulf. — Kenneth M.

Sep 7, 2012 | Briefing Book
Washington, D.C., September 7, 2012 – Eleven years after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, how concerned Americans should be over threats of nuclear terrorism remains a subject of vigorous debate. Declassified documents have confirmed that the U.S. (and other) governments have anticipated the possibility of a terrorist nuclear incident at such high-profile events as the 2009 inauguration of President Barack Obama and the 2010 Vancouver Olympics. Ever since 9/11, U.S. experts have been particularly interested in whether al-Qaeda is trying to acquire a nuclear device.

Sep 5, 2012 | News
Washington, DC, September 5, 2012 – The online magazine ForeignPolicy.com today published an extraordinary CIA document on the recent Iraq war which the National Security Archive obtained through a Mandatory Declassification Review (MDR) request to the CIA.

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