30+ Years of Freedom of Information Action

Policy Making and Diplomacy

Apr 12, 2013 | Briefing Book
Washington, D.C., April 12, 2013 – Margaret Thatcher, the former British prime minister who passed away this week, built a surprising mutual-admiration relationship with the Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev in the 1980s – including behind-the-scenes agreement against the reunification of Germany, and profound disagreement about nuclear abolition – according to translated Soviet records of key meetings between the two leaders, posted online today for the first time by the National Security Archive at George Washington University (www.nsarchive.org).

Apr 11, 2013 | Briefing Book
Washington, D.C., April 11, 2013 – For decades, the erratic behavior of North Korea's enigmatic leaders has often masked a mix of symbolic and pragmatic motives, according to declassified documents posted today by the National Security Archive. During earlier crises, Kim Jong Un's father and grandfather postured and threatened the region in ways markedly similar to the behavior of the new leader, the records show. While the current Kim is acting even more stridently in some cases, the documents reveal a past pattern characterized by bellicose conduct.

Mar 19, 2013 | Briefing Book
Archive Electronic Briefing Books Cited in This Posting THE IRAQ WAR -- PART II: Was There Even a Decision? October 1, 2010 THE IRAQ WAR -- PART I: The U.S. Prepares for Conflict, 2001 September 22, 2010 Saddam Hussein Talks to the FBI July 1, 2009 THE RECORD ON CURVEBALL November 5, 2007 TOP SECRET POLO STEP February 14, 2007 New State Department Releases on the "Future of Iraq" Project September 1, 2006 CIA Whites Out Controversial Estimate on Iraq Weapons July 9, 2004

Feb 28, 2013 | Briefing Book
Washington, D.C., February 28, 2013 – U.S. officials had hopes thirty years ago that a political liberalization and economic reform program China had initiated in Tibet could lead to real improvements in that country, according to declassified documents posted today by the National Security Archive.

Jan 18, 2013 | Briefing Book
Washington, D.C., January 18, 2013 – The U.S. government has "between five to seven different transition plans" for Cuba, and the USAID-sponsored "Democracy" program aimed at the Castro government is "an operational activity" that demands "continuous discretion," according to documents filed in court this week, and posted today by the National Security Archive.

Oct 27, 2012 | Briefing Book
Washington, DC, October 27, 2012 – The Cuban Missile Crisis continued long after the "13 days" celebrated by U.S. media, with U.S. armed forces still on DEFCON 2 and Soviet tactical nuclear weapons still in Cuba, according to new documents posted today by the National Security Archive (www.nsarchive.org) from the personal archive of the late Sergo Mikoyan. This is the second installment from the Mikoyan archive donated to the National Security Archive and featured in the new book, The Soviet Cuban Missile Crisis.

Oct 12, 2012 | Briefing Book
Washington, DC, October 12, 2012 – On the 50th anniversary of the Cuban Missile Crisis, new documents from the Robert Kennedy papers declassified yesterday and posted today by the National Security Archive reveal previously unknown details of the Kennedy administration's secret effort to find an accord with Cuba that would remove the Soviet missiles in return for a modus vivendi between Washington and Havana. The 2700 pages of RFK papers opened yesterday include the first proposed letter to "Mr.

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.

Oct 12, 2012 | Special Exhibit
The Cuban missile crisis 50th anniversary

Oct 10, 2012 | Briefing Book
Washington, DC, October 10, 2012 – In November 1962, Cuba was preparing to become the first nuclear power in Latin America—at the time when the Kennedy administration thought that the Cuban Missile Crisis was long resolved and the Soviet missiles were out. However, the Soviet and the Cuban leadership knew that the most dangerous weapons of the crisis—tactical Lunas and FKRs—were still in Cuba. They were battlefield weapons, which would have been used against the U.S. landing forces if the EXCOMM had decided on an invasion, not the quarantine.

Pages