Secrecy News

Classified Info in Criminal Trials, and More from CRS

Former CIA officer John C. Kiriakou is to be arraigned today on charges of leaking classified information to the press in violation of the Espionage Act and the Intelligence Identities Protection Act — charges that he denies.  See The Case of An Accused Leaker: Politics or Justice? by Carrie Johnson, National Public Radio, April 13.

A newly updated report from the Congressional Research Service discusses Protecting Classified Information and the Rights of Criminal Defendants: The Classified Information Procedures Act, April 2, 2012.

Another newly updated CRS report finds that federal agencies spent $750.4 million last year to pay for “advertising services.”  But though non-trivial, it seems that this amount was less than was spent for such purposes in any previous year since 2003.

The term advertising is not strictly defined in budget documents, and may include various forms of public relations, public service notices, and the like. “Government advertising can be controversial if it conflicts with citizens’ views about the proper role of government,” the CRS report stated. “Yet some government advertising is accepted as a normal part of government information activities.”

Federal advertising expenditures have actually decreased over the past two years and haven’t been lower since 2003. The highest level of advertising expenditures in the past decade occurred in 2004, the CRS report found.  See Advertising by the Federal Government: An Overview, April 6, 2012.

Some other updated CRS reports that have not been made publicly available by Congress include these:

Detention of U.S. Persons as Enemy Belligerents, April 11, 2012

Rare Earth Elements in National Defense: Background, Oversight Issues, and Options for Congress, April 11, 2012

The Lord’s Resistance Army: The U.S. Response, April 11, 2012

Kuwait: Security, Reform, and U.S. Policy, April 11, 2012

Pakistan: U.S. Foreign Assistance, April 10, 2012