from the FAS Project on Government Secrecy
Volume 2007, Issue No. 104
October 22, 2007
Secrecy News Blog: http://www.fas.org/blog/secrecy/
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INTELLIGENCE BUDGET WILL BE DISCLOSED, ODNI SAYS
Within a week, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence will formally disclose the size of the National Intelligence Program budget for fiscal year 2007, an ODNI spokeswoman said.
The anticipated disclosure marks the culmination of decades of advocacy, debate and litigation.
Last July Congress enacted an intelligence budget disclosure requirement over White House objections as part of a bill to implement the recommendations of the 9/11 Commission.
"The Administration strongly opposes the requirement in the bill to publicly disclose sensitive information about the intelligence budget," according to a February 28 statement of administration policy.
But on August 3 President Bush nevertheless signed the final bill, which allows the (next) President to waive the disclosure requirement on national security grounds, if necessary, starting in 2009.
The disclosure requirement states (in section 601 of H.R. 1):
"Not later than 30 days after the end of each fiscal year beginning with fiscal year 2007, the Director of National Intelligence shall disclose to the public the aggregate amount of funds appropriated by Congress for the National Intelligence Program for such fiscal year."
Since fiscal year 2007 ended on September 30, the legal deadline for budget disclosure is October 30.
Will the DNI comply?
"That's what the law requires," said Vanee Vines of the ODNI public affairs office today, "and we're going to follow the law."
The aggregate intelligence budget (a broad term which included "tactical" as well as "national" intelligence spending) was first officially disclosed ten years ago, in October 1997, in response to a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit filed by the Federation of American Scientists. At that time, the (FY 1997) budget figure was $26.6 billion. The last officially authorized disclosure was in March 1998, when the budget was $26.7 billion.
TREATMENT OF CHEMICAL WEAPONS CASUALTIES
The treatment of injuries caused by chemical weapons and other chemical agents is addressed in a new military field manual.
The manual, issued jointly by the Army, Navy, Marines and Air Force, characterizes the threat from chemical weapons, describes the diagnosis of chemical injuries and outlines preventive and remedial measures.
See "Multiservice Tactics, Techniques, and Procedures for Treatment of Chemical Agent Casualties and Conventional Military Chemical Injuries," FM 4-02.285, September 2007:
Last week, President Bush issued Homeland Security Presidential Directive 21 on "Public Health and Medical Preparedness," which is intended to advance "preparedness for all potential catastrophic health events."
Secrecy News is written by Steven Aftergood and published by the Federation of American Scientists.
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