Disfavored CIA Reports Placed Online

U.S. News and World Report reported last January that at least three publications of the CIA’s Center for the Study of Intelligence, all critical of the Agency, had been withheld from the CIA web site (“A Tangled Web Woven,” by David E. Kaplan, U.S. News, January 30, 2006).

Now two of those disfavored publications are available on the Federation of American Scientists web site. The third will follow.

“Intelligence for a New Era in American Foreign Policy” (1.3 MB pdf) is the report of a conference convened by the Center for the Study of Intelligence, published in January 2004.

“Analytic Culture in the U.S. Intelligence Community: An Ethnographic Study” (8 MB pdf) is an interesting and unusual effort to assess intelligence analysis from an anthropological viewpoint, published in 2005.

It is a small irony of the Information Age that by attempting to selectively withhold these publications from the web, the CIA has practically guaranteed that more people will read them than would have otherwise done so.

But CIA seems to have little understanding of that fact, and the Agency’s efforts to suppress criticism are as relentless as they are self-defeating.

“The CIA has imposed new and tighter restrictions on the books, articles, and opinion pieces published by former employees who are still contractors with the intelligence agency,” writes Shane Harris.

See “Silencing the Squeaky Wheel” by Shane Harris, National Journal, April 27.

See also “Excessive Secrecy Hurting CIA Studies” by Shaun Waterman, UPI, April 27.

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