Government Secrecy

The FAS Project on Government Secrecy works to reduce the scope of official secrecy and to promote public access to national security information by seeking reform of national security classification and declassification policies.

The Project also publishes previously undisclosed or hard-to-find government documents of public policy interest, as well as resources on intelligence policy. The Project is directed by Steven Aftergood.

Government Secrecy Links

Government Secrecy

Trump Jr: “Declassify Everything!!!”

On November 8 Donald J. Trump Jr., the President’s oldest son, tweeted: “DECLASSIFY EVERYTHING!!!” adding “We can’t let the bad actors get away with it.” This was not an actual policy proposal and it was not seriously intended for classification officials or even for Trump’s… Read More

Presidential Transition Act, and More from CRS

Noteworthy new publications from the Congressional Research Service include the following. Presidential Transition Act: Provisions and Funding, November 13, 2020 Federal Scientific Integrity Policies: A Primer, November 20, 2020 The Digital… Read More

The FDA should condition any vaccine approval on open trial data

With only 60 percent of Americans reporting that they’re willing to take a coronavirus vaccine, it’s not enough for the government to simply approve a vaccine candidate. Some Americans are wary of the speed with which these vaccines have been developed; others… Read More

Personal Debt and National Security

Last June the Department of Defense denied an application for security clearance for access to classified information because the applicant had “delinquent debts totaling about $24,000.” In May, a defense contractor was denied a security clearance based on delinquent debts totaling $87,517. In… Read More

Senator’s Challenge to War Powers Secrecy Blocked

Last January the Trump Administration formally notified Congress under the War Powers Act of a US drone strike that killed Iranian Maj. Gen. Qasem Soleimani. But unlike all known prior War Powers Act notifications, the report on the Soleimani killing was… Read More

US Army Views North Korean Military Tactics

North Korea’s military “uses tactics based on former Soviet or current Russian doctrine, Chinese developments, lessons learned, and observation of recent military actions,” according to a new US Army manual on the subject. “While North Korea maintains large amounts of military equipment, much of it is outdated making it… Read More

Navy Lab’s Future Is At Risk, Report Warns

Updated below The U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) boasts an amazing record of achievement but its future is in jeopardy, according to a newly disclosed report of the Naval Research Advisory Committee that was suppressed by the Navy. NRL is widely… Read More