SECRECY NEWS
from the FAS Project on Government Secrecy
Volume 2003, Issue No. 52
June 19, 2003

HPSCI REPORT ON 2004 INTELLIGENCE AUTHORIZATION

"[T]he Intelligence Community must engage in a comprehensive and candid assessment of its activities related to the Iraq conflict in order to better understand the strengths and weaknesses of its systems and processes," according to a new report from the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HPSCI).

The HPSCI report on the Intelligence Authorization Act for 2004 authorized a classified amount of funding for next year that is "just above the President's request."

The new report addresses an array of intelligence policy issues, with brief disquisitions on "the primacy of the analyst," the state of human intelligence, the intelligence community's role in homeland security, and more.

The Committee directs the establishment of two pilot projects to improve the sharing of intelligence and threat data among federal, state and local officials. The Committee encourages the use of "tear-lines" separating intelligence information from the underlying sources and methods, so that the information can be more widely shared.

(The dark side of increased intelligence sharing, not acknowledged by the Committee, is that it imposes new secrecy obligations on state and local officials who receive the information, and new constraints on their interactions with the press and the public.)

On the subject of congressional oversight, the Committee makes the alarming observation that it sometimes doesn't know what it is funding, because the budget request documents are so poorly written:

"The project descriptions are often so vague that the Committee is unable to determine the value of, or even what is being developed."

The new HPSCI report on the Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2004, House Report 108-163, dated June 18, is posted here:


IAEA REPORT ON IRAN

"Iran has failed to meet its obligations under its [Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty] Safeguards Agreement with respect to the reporting of nuclear material, the subsequent processing and use of that material and the declaration of facilities where the material was stored and processed," according to a new report from the International Atomic Energy Agency.

The report, which has not been formally released by the IAEA, presents new findings on the state of Iran's nuclear program and the apparent violation of its nonproliferation commitments. The text is available here:


WAITING FOR THE WEN HO LEE REPORT

An op-ed writer in the Albuquerque Tribune joined the chorus of voices calling for release of the Justice Department's suppressed report of its investigation of the Wen Ho Lee case.

See "Shouldn't we know about Wen Ho Lee trial mishaps?" by columnist Hal Rhodes, Albuquerque Tribune, June 18:

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Secrecy News is written by Steven Aftergood and published by the Federation of American Scientists.

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