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

Long Live the International Entrepreneur Rule: An Opportunity to Boost Jobs and Economic Growth Is Hiding in Plain Sight

Entrepreneurship is the engine of long-term economic growth and dynamism. For the United States in particular, foreign-born entrepreneurs have made up an extraordinary share of our most successful companies and technological achievements. To encourage the vitally important flow of immigrant entrepreneurs, and to accommodate the growing need for an entrepreneur-specific… Read More

A “Drop Dead” Date for Classified Info

The declassification process has been overwhelmed by the flood of classified records awaiting review, said Sen. Ron Wyden last week. “I intend to push the Director of National Intelligence to fix a broken declassification system,” he said. One highly effective way to begin fixing the… Read More

Biden Issues National Security Directive 1

Update: National Security Directive 1 was redesignated as National Security Memorandum 1. Amid the whirlwind of White House activity following inauguration last week, President Biden issued his first presidential directive on national security to designate pandemic response as a priority. “My Administration will treat epidemic… Read More

An Integrated Approach to Deterrence Posture

The primary deterrence challenge facing the United States today is preventing aggression and escalation in limited conventional conflicts with a nuclear-armed adversary. It is a difficult conceptual and practical challenge for both conventional and nuclear strategy—but existing Pentagon strategy development processes are not equipped to integrate these tools to meet the challenge. Read More

Update Schedule A with New Data

Employers hiring in Schedule A occupations may more easily bring foreign workers permanently to the United States to fill those jobs because they do not have to prove there are not enough U.S. workers who are “able, willing, qualified, and available to accept the job opportunity.” This designation shortens the… Read More

DNI Tries to Abort Controlled Unclassified Info Policy

In a bureaucratic bombshell, Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe has asked the White House to rescind a ten-year-old executive order that required a uniform policy for marking and handling “controlled unclassified information” (CUI). CUI refers to information that while unclassified is nevertheless restricted by law or policy from… Read More

Counting Electoral Votes (CRS)

The procedural steps leading up to inauguration of the next President on January 20, 2021 are described in a recent Congressional Research Service publication. See The Electoral College: A 2020 Presidential Election Timeline, CRS In Focus, October 22, 2020. An updated CRS report describes the joint… Read More