Learn about the beta

Chapter 9: The Erosion of Transparency, 1978–1985

From 1979 to 1985, the Department of State published 30 FRUS volumes at an average publication line of 30 years. The 27 volumes published after 1980 reflected a major clash between Department historians and a new Departmental Classification/Declassification Center (CDC) in 1980 and 1981. The creation of the CDC in 1978 introduced a powerful, focused bureaucratic counterweight to HO and fostered an institutional culture skeptical of transparency within the Department. The CDC assumed FRUS declassification review responsibilities just as U.S. policymakers grappled with the aftermath of the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, the Iranian revolution, the growing nuclear freeze movement in Western Europe, and Josip Tito’s death in Yugoslavia.1 Unfortunately for FRUS, these developments coincided with HO’s efforts to complete the declassification of volumes documenting the “‘coldest’ phase of the Cold War[,] when secret and undercover operations assume[d] an important role in U.S. foreign policy.”2

Between the spring and fall of 1980, Department of State officials and historians debated the proper balance between security and transparency as they argued about the FRUS series. Anxious Department officials insisted that the CDC review again all 18 unpublished FRUS compilations that had been cleared under the old decentralized declassification procedures. HO’s appeals of this “re-review,” both through standard bureaucratic channels and the Department’s special Dissent Channel, were denied in the fall of 1980. In early 1981, the Department adopted procedures to expand foreign government information (FGI) consultations and transferred interagency FRUS liaison responsibilities from HO to the CDC. The re-review delayed, for several years, the release of many FRUS volumes covering the first half of the 1950s.

Even more importantly, the 1980 debate over FRUS established precedents that privileged security concerns over the U.S. Government’s responsibility for openness throughout the rest of the decade. Amidst delays in securing adequate clearance for existing FRUS manuscripts, HO halted further compilation for over a year in the early 1980s. One re-reviewed volume, The American Republics, 1952–1954, lacked documentation of the CIA’s widely-known role in deposing Jacobo Arbenz in Guatemala when it was published at the end of 1983. In 1984, as Nixon’s mandated 20-year line seemed increasingly unattainable, the Department rejected academic community requests to hold FRUS to a 25-year line and instead established a 30-year norm. Even meeting a 30-year line required President Ronald Reagan’s intervention to order an acceleration of the production process. Most critically, the re-review decision led HO to lower its expectations for comprehensiveness and the HAC to focus its attention on declassification policy and procedures, which brought it into conflict with an increasingly assertive CDC as the Department implemented the Reagan acceleration directive in the mid- and late 1980s.

“No Policy Issue Can Be of Comparable Importance”: The 1980 FRUS Re-Review

One of the most traumatic events in the history of the series, the 1980 re-review was an ironic consequence of institutional reform intended to streamline and liberalize Department declassification procedures. In response to President Jimmy Carter’s 1978 executive order on classification and declassification policies (E.O. 12065),3 Under Secretary of State for Management Ben Read determined that “declassification activities are a permanent and major function and the Department must organize itself to handle them on a permanent basis.” To implement Carter’s directive, Read established “a unified Department-wide structure governing all aspects of records release.” The Classification/Declassification Center (CDC) replaced the ad hoc process of clearances by desk officers in the geographic and functional bureaus, whose prioritization of operational responsibilities sometimes led to tardy or arbitrary decisions about releasing information. The transition to CDC authority was to be gradual, with the existing process remaining in place for 1950–1954 records and the new system responsible for records from 1955 onward.4

At the same time that the Department overhauled its declassification process, HO participated in Department-wide efforts to implement E.O. 12065’s provisions protecting FGI. These efforts gained urgency as allied governments already concerned about FOIA releases that damaged or embarrassed their interests inquired about the Executive Order’s provision for systematic declassification review at a 20 year line. In response, the Department took pains to emphasize the U.S. Government’s strengthened protection of FGI, which was exempted from the order’s 20-year systematic review requirement and from mandatory review under FOIA before 30 years.5 Despite revisions to systematic review guidelines to take foreign government concerns into account, it remained unclear whether the Department would consult foreign governments regarding the release of FGI in U.S. documents.

HO expressed special concern over how FGI protections would affect FRUS clearances. Office Director David Trask urged the Department to maintain traditional practices, which treated “declassification for publication in Foreign Relations [as] a special case” rather than as part of the general mandatory or systematic review workload, because of the added context that the series afforded “sensitive documentation.”6 HO also worked to protect existing FGI practices that reserved to the U.S. Government exclusive authority to withhold or release its own documents. Opening the door to consultation with foreign governments would, in effect, grant those governments vetoes over the release of U.S. documents. In the spring of 1980, Trask learned that the CDC had already informed British diplomats that the Department would undertake extensive consultations before declassifying FRUS compilations.7

In 1980, the Department’s plan for an orderly transition to the new declassification regime fell apart after CDC and Bureau of European Affairs (EUR) officials protested that the old clearance process failed to protect sensitive material in several FRUS volumes that were near publication. HO was unsurprised by EUR’s concerns since the Bureau had presented vexing clearance problems in recent years. In 1978, HO declassification adviser David Baehler warned his superiors that EUR “requested large deletions in major compilations for 1951 and 1952–54” involving two types of information: “U.S. planning on political or propaganda action to be undertaken covertly or semi-covertly . . . includ[ing] any mention of CIA as an agency responsible for such action” and “material that . . . might . . . give offense to another government and thereby impair U.S. relations with it.” He emphasized that EUR’s excisions were “not small potatoes. The covert activities category . . . is a significant aspect of U.S. policy for the early 1950s. We might as well face the fact now that our acceding to bureau requests that this category not be treated in Foreign Relations would be tantamount to the purposeful omission of a considerable body of the foreign policy record.” Baehler warned that accepting EUR deletions would “set a precedent for a long time to come.”8

EUR excisions of CIA presence and covert operations coincided with HO outreach to the Agency during the late 1970s to improve documentation of intelligence activities in FRUS. Compilers working on volumes covering the 1950s encountered CIA documents chiefly in Department of State files or in the holdings of the Eisenhower Library; they had no direct access to Agency records. Despite this restriction, HO occasionally obtained CIA cable traffic for background use.9 To HO’s chagrin, however, the CIA rejected efforts to include such documents in FRUS compilations and resented proposed Editorial Notes that ignored “limitations that CIA must apply to the proposed disclosure of CIA information.”10 In 1980, HO explored ways to secure access, for possible inclusion in FRUS, to CIA documents that had already been declassified through mandatory or systematic review but were nonetheless difficult to use in the absence of an established repository or database of the released materials.11 Despite these substantial obstacles to documenting the CIA’s contributions to policymaking, in 1978 HO identified prompt CIA clearances to records gleaned from Department files and Presidential Libraries as essential to the timely publication of FRUS volumes covering the 1950s.12

As HO quickly learned, speedy clearance decisions that did not release significant documentation held little value for FRUS. Under E.O. 12065, the CIA carved out 29 broad categories of exemptions from declassification at 20 years.13 CIA review of documents for FRUS reflected this broader impulse toward secrecy. The CIA denied HO appeals to publish documents on the basis of previous disclosure in memoirs of former CIA officials, congressional reports, or leaked documents (like the Pentagon Papers). The CIA also refused to clear documents that revealed a previously unacknowledged CIA presence or liaison relationship with a foreign intelligence service. Employing a broad definition of “intelligence sources and methods,” the CIA practically excised itself from the documents that it cleared for FRUS in 1979 and 1980.

In the late 1970s, HO historians struggled to influence CIA declassification review practices. In September 1979, after a meeting with CIA declassification officials that “effectively cut the ground from under us on the issue of whether the F[oreign] R[elations] series is a legitimate vehicle for initial executive disclosure for CIA materials,”14 John Glennon, the Associate Historian for Asia, Africa, and the Pacific, appealed CIA denials for “policy papers which deal in only the most general way with operational methods and make no mention at all of sources.” In another appeal, he asked the CIA to release a “mere indication of the CIA presence” abroad. To support these requests, Glennon explained that much of the denied information had already been disclosed in the “memoirs of high-level CIA officials,” the Church Committee’s final report, an official military history, or the Pentagon Papers.15

In response to Glennon’s appeals, Gale Allen, the Chief of the CIA’s Classification Review Division, explained “the Agency rationale” for its clearance actions. Allen rejected Glennon’s assumption that “references from open literature” constituted “authorized executive disclosure.” For the Agency to accept otherwise would, “in the face of the First Amendment entitlement of most Americans . . . and the weakness of our statutes with respect to the protection of official secrets, place us in an untenable position.” Vital secrets would then be “vulnerable to the Ellsbergs and Agees of this world who, having purloined official classified material and had it published, could then point to the fact of publication as a basis for requiring the Agency to make official confirmation.” The Agency did not consider its own pre-publication review of “semi-official memoir” manuscripts or legislative disclosures (like the Church Committee’s final report) precedents for authorized executive disclosure. Likewise, it insisted that the release of CIA equities by “another component of the Executive Branch does not constitute authorized executive disclosure by this Agency unless competent authority of this Agency . . . has concurred.” Allen continued by outlining the “standard Agency practice . . . not to disclose CIA locations abroad” and citing statutory authority to withhold information concerning “the fact of or details concerning intelligence liaison relationships between CIA and foreign intelligence and security services.” Agency reviewers, he insisted, focused upon the “present day impact of disclosure”; no document’s historical significance could provide “sufficient justification to ignore the possible present day difficulties that could result from disclosure.” Allen concluded that the CIA was “well-advised not to release official information that makes clear to host country authorities that CIA has or had a station in the country, or that CIA has or had an intelligence liaison relationship with intelligence services of the host country.” “Our concern,” Allen assured HO, “is not that disclosure of this sort is embarrassing but that it has a definite impact on current or future diplomatic and operational environments in which the CIA must carry out intelligence activities.”16

HO refused to accept Allen’s position. On February 6, 1980, Trask tried to convince him that documents selected for FRUS merited special consideration for release. He argued that “the legal role of the Foreign Relations series in executive disclosure of material containing CIA equities is of key importance” and that FRUS historians had repeatedly been directed, “subject to the needs of national security, to publish the material adjudged important regardless of whether it has been previously disclosed.” CIA insistence on “prior authorized executive disclosure” of material to be cleared for FRUS made a mockery of the fundamental purpose of the series and, Trask alleged, lacked legal standing. Moreover, the CIA’s rigid policies ignored the balancing test provided by E.O. 12065 (identifiable damage to U.S. foreign policy vs. public’s right to information), especially in cases when the Department of State believed that a historical CIA presence or liaison relationship was no longer sensitive. Trask urged the CIA to recognize that “omit[ting] significant categories of foreign relations material” from the series “would compromise its authoritative character,” “weaken the credibility of the series,” and, consequently, damage the U.S. Government’s best tool for “revealing publicly the record of its foreign policy in its full context.”17

The CIA response, which came in the midst of the 1980 re-review, was scathing. Thomas White, the Chief of the Information Services Staff (which oversaw the Classification Review Group), informed Trask in July 1980 that “all final decisions with respect to the declassification or the continued classification of” intelligence-related information “must be made by officials of this Agency. . . . The intelligence business,” he explained, “is unique and such decisions can only be made, if we are to avoid damage to national security, by persons fully knowledgeable of all relevant facts in any given instance.” Far from downplaying FRUS’s significance, White explained that “the mandated role of FRUS and its importance as the official history of United States foreign policy . . . causes us particular concern since anything appearing in the FRUS is official Executive disclosure of United States government information” that “leaves no doubt as to its veracity.”18 This led the Agency to “be extremely careful that information regarding [the] CIA appearing therein not be such as to damage the national security of the United States.” Although Trask’s presumption that most “information may become desensitized with the passage of time . . . may often be valid, it [was] much less so in the case of information concerning intelligence agencies and their activities.” Protecting historical sources was crucial because it reassured current and future sources that their assistance to the U.S. Government would “not redound against them or their families.” White also reiterated the CIA’s rejection of prior unauthorized disclosure as a rationale for releasing classified information. “To do so would,” he alleged, “be to recognize the validity of everything that has been published regarding the intelligence process over the years whether right or wrong, sensitive or not, and we simply cannot take this position.” In his conclusion, White staked the Agency’s claim “to protect a vast area [of intelligence sources and methods] that is vital to our objectives and without which we would be rendered useless.”19

White’s response reached HO as Trask and his colleagues confronted a far more immediate threat to FRUS’s integrity from within the Department. On March 19, 1980, the CDC joined EUR’s efforts to sanitize Foreign Relations. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Clayton McManaway, who headed the CDC, informed HO and its parent Bureau of Public Affairs (PA) that his staff wanted to review pre-1955 records, especially those regarding relations with the United Kingdom. McManaway justified the re-review by criticizing previous decisions about FGI in U.S. documents and claiming that subsequent events had re-sensitized some information after desk officer clearance.20

In April 1980, EUR and CDC persuaded Under Secretary Read to revoke clearances for all pending FRUS volumes. The 1951 national security affairs volume, which contained documentation about the possible use of British and Canadian bases in the event of war with the Soviet Union, served as the catalyst for the re-review.21 The release of this volume on April 14 also drew the CIA’s attention because it included references to a confidential intelligence liaison relationship.22 After learning that advance copies of the volume had already been released to foreign journalists on April 11, Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs George Vest withdrew his bureau’s clearances of all unreleased FRUS compilations. The same day, Read affirmed that CDC would re-review almost two dozen compilations that had already completed or nearly completed the clearance process under previous declassification procedures.23 The CIA echoed these demands for a re-review of previously-cleared compilations later that month.24

Amidst these decisions, HO criticized the re-review and proposals to expand FGI consultations as unnecessary and counterproductive. On April 11, Trask fulminated that “no sovereign state should compromise in any way its freedom of action to dispose of its records.”25 He assured Vest that HO followed careful procedures to “minimize untoward stories or embarrassment for missions overseas” when it published FRUS.26 On April 15, Trask urged Hodding Carter, the Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs, to “insure that the re-review of unpublished volumes . . . do[es] not threaten the integrity of the series or delay publication unnecessarily.” He warned that “serious damage to FRUS would deal a body blow to the Department’s support for openness in government” and “attract most unfavorable notice in Congress [that] might well lead to undesirable constraints.”27

Although PA complained about EUR’s withdrawal of previous clearances, HO and FRUS gained little traction within the Department during the spring. On April 17, Hodding Carter emphasized to Vest that “the national interest has to be defined and interpreted to include the public’s right to access.” He worried that the re-review would “lend substance to a charge that the present Administration is less committed” to opening the historical record “than either of its two predecessors.”28 By April 23, Trask reported to William Dyess, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs, that the CIA request to re-review unpublished FRUS volumes “proves beyond doubt that we are indeed faced with a truly serious challenge.”29

HO discussions with the CDC reinforced its fears. Near the end of April, the Department’s declassification staff suggested to Trask that a “30-year publication line is more sensible than the 20-year line.” Trask responded that “delaying the series” was “overkill of the first magnitude.”30 On May 2, Trask added that “at no point in the publication of the Foreign Relations series have untoward consequences resulted from the traditional practice of avoiding discussions with foreign governments concerning publication of their information in American documents.” Even if “consultation with foreign governments is primarily being considered with reference to the UK and other Commonwealth countries,” he warned, “drawing distinctions between foreign countries in terms of their right to prepublication review could create misunderstandings and tensions.”31

As HO–CDC tensions simmered in May, Trask struggled to enlist PA to support FRUS in the bureaucratic chain of command. Unfortunately for Trask, his superiors had more immediate concerns. On April 25, 1980, the White House acknowledged the failure of a U.S. military operation to rescue American hostages in Tehran. Secretary of State Cyrus Vance, who opposed the operation, resigned on April 28. Hodding Carter followed Vance out of the Department by “phasing out” before resigning in June. Amidst this chaos, Carter’s deputy William Dyess “lack[ed] authority to do much” and “worrie[d] about missteps that might affect his future.” Trask faced a leadership vacuum in PA that “worked against anyone making decisions of any great moment.”32 PA’s passivity weakened HO’s efforts to persuade Read and McManaway of the value of FRUS for the Department, the difficulties engendered by the re-review, and the merits of existing policies for clearing foreign government information in U.S. documents.33

The conduct of the re-review confirmed HO’s anxieties. On May 7, Office staff met with CDC reviewers to discuss the general economic and political affairs compilation for 1952–1954. The meeting showed that the CDC’s re-review “would be painstaking, raising the possibility of numerous objections to previously cleared material” and that the new reviewers “clearly gave priority to the need for withholding sensitive materials over the goal of expediting the release of the diplomatic record.” After meeting their CDC colleagues, FRUS compilers urged “HO management and staff to take appropriate steps to contain possible damage” to the series.34 By May 22, Trask had “come to the firmest conclusion that decisive action should be taken immediately to stop all tampering with unpublished volumes.”35

The time for such action, however, had passed. On May 27, McManaway reported that “the results achieved thus far more than justify the undertaking of the re-review. The protection of materials relating to Yugoslavia, Iran, and to several of our European allies have been of great importance.”36 Despite McManaway’s report, Trask still believed that he could persuade Read to reverse his decision for the re-review as June began.37 He derived some of this optimism from Samuel Gammon, a special assistant to Under Secretary Read, who “thought EUR and CIA had been nudged into the review by CDC” and insinuated “that M was unhappy about . . . CDC’s . . . failure to consult while taking all sorts of decisions that clearly involved other organizations.”38

At a June 5 meeting of the Department’s committee overseeing implementation of Carter’s executive order, Trask made his case against the re-review. Dyess, newly installed as Acting Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs, reminded his colleagues that their decisions “went well beyond publication of FRUS to the whole question of sincerity about openness in government.” Other bureaus, however, argued that Cold War concerns should outweigh the impulse for openness. Robert Miller, the Director of Management Operations who filled in for the absent Under Secretary Read, predicted that releasing “post-World War II records would lead to many more [foreign policy] difficulties than had the publication of earlier records . . . because there is continuity between the early postwar years and the institutions that developed the[n] and the present.” David Baehler countered that the Department had “yet to hear a peep of protests from foreign governments reflecting foreign policy difficulties” even though it had “been publishing postwar documents for fifteen years now.”39 Miller remained unconvinced. He feared that “the act of publication can be construed abroad as a political statement on the part of the US government.” With assurances from the Government Printing Office that re-reviewed manuscripts could be “fast-tracked” for early publication, the Bureau of Management (M) and CDC dismissed HO’s warnings of significant delays in FRUS. Despite Trask’s criticism of the decisionmaking process that led to the re-review, his warnings of looming “image problems” with the academic community, and his projection of delays and cost overruns, the Department bureaucracy rejected HO’s arguments and proceeded with the re-review.40

Defeated within the chain of command, Trask employed the Dissent Channel to bypass CDC officials and Under Secretary Read to appeal the re-review directly to the highest levels of the Department. In his June 11, 1980 appeal to Anthony Lake, Director of the Policy Planning Staff, Trask argued that, “if the Foreign Relations series is compromised, so is the Department’s commitment to open government. Given the fundamental importance of information in the function of a democratic society, no policy issue can be of comparable importance.”41 On the same day, he informed the Historical Advisory Committee about the re-review and HO’s efforts to uphold previous clearances.42 Trask anticipated these measures would culminate in a “Wagnerian climax” by the time he, Dyess, and Read were scheduled to address the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations later in the summer.43

Instead, the appeal and the re-review dragged into the fall. Over the next few months, HO pursued dual tracks within the Department bureaucracy. As HO struggled to mitigate the damage done to individual volumes, Trask persisted with his Dissent Channel appeal of the re-review.44 In late August, Trask dismissed “re-sensitization” of documents as “just plain stupid” and a “patently ridiculous . . . smoke screen” for excessive secrecy.45 On September 9, he attributed allegations of foreign concern about FRUS to “clientism in the Department.” Trask insisted that “even if on some future occasion a row materializes, we have to weigh some slight evanescent inconvenience against our responsibility to report the truth at an appropriate time without fear or favor. If we stray from that principle . . . we will be throwing away one of our strong and undeniable assets in dealing with the rest of the world and informing our own people.”46

Trask and his colleagues also remained fully engaged in the re-review process. Between June and September, McManaway peppered the bureaucracy with optimistic reports of the CDC’s rapid progress. He promised to complete the re-review by November 1.47 Trask deprecated McManaway’s assurances since HO and CDC could not even agree on what constituted a “complete” re-review.48 In meetings with HO staff to discuss the results of the re-review for specific volumes, representatives of the CDC exhibited skepticism about the value of the series and government transparency. One CDC reviewer displayed “a surprising degree of carelessness and disregard for the provisions of Executive Order 12065 and related Department of State regulations” when he met with HO staff members on September 5. To FRUS historians, the CDC treated FRUS “as though it were a current public affairs pamphlet intended to explain policies or create a favorable image abroad, rather than as the official and objective record of United States foreign policy.”49

The CDC’s actions reflected fears among U.S. diplomats that releasing sensitive information in historical documents risked disastrous consequences for U.S. foreign policy in 1980. Department officials believed FRUS documents could be especially dangerous for Yugoslavia. In April, shortly before Tito’s death, CDC and EUR insisted that a fully-printed volume containing documents from 1949 and 1950 be delayed “on the grounds that the Yugoslavia materials might endanger the country’s existence.”50 In July, U.S. Ambassador to Yugoslavia Lawrence Eagleburger warned that releasing documents on U.S. relations with Yugoslavia in 1950 and 1951 would “encourage . . . those opposing a strong, independent Yugoslavia,” “damage” British and French “relations with both Yugoslavia and the Soviet Union,” and “shock” Yugoslavs who did not “understand us well enough to accept that [publication of FRUS] was not being done deliberately to embarrass them.”51

HO’s battle against re-review culminated in early October 1980. Even before Trask’s Dissent Channel appeal, HO considered the European Security volume for 1951 to be an ideal test case for challenging the results of the re-review within normal bureaucratic channels. On May 30, David Baehler argued that the deletions demanded by EUR and CDC “get us down to basics very quickly . . . are we trying to publish a historical record describing as completely as possible such things as the considerations involved in the entry of Greece and Turkey into NATO, or are we publishing something akin to a White paper the contents of which are determined more by present political considerations than by historical considerations?”52 Working through PA, HO appealed EUR’s deletions in the summer of 1980.53

EUR criticized HO for ignoring the views of those tasked with current operations. In August, the Bureau insisted that [officials in the Department’s operational bureaus] and the Embassies abroad . . . are better positioned to make judgments about what is and what is not sensitive . . . than our colleagues in the Office of the Historian.”54 Trask responded that “both HO and our missions abroad may have useful but different information that may be helpful in reaching a decision on declassification. . . . EUR’s claim to what amounts to a veto on declassification is surely inadmissible.”55 When the final appeal was ready for Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs David Newsom on September 12, Assistant Secretary Vest urged Newsom to affirm “that the geographic assistant secretary concerned should be the final arbiter on what is fit for publication in the Foreign Relations of the U.S. series.”56

On October 9, Newsom chaired a meeting where he, Trask, Vest, and Laurence Pickering (substituting for the absent Clayton McManaway) discussed what could be responsibly released in the FRUS volume on European security for 1951.57 Newsom focused on two basic questions: “what are our obligations to our allies and to NATO?” and how should the “possible damage of release to national security . . . be weighed against the right of the public to the information”? Newsom pressed all three officials. The Under Secretary asked Trask about clearing foreign government information and FRUS’s role in the overall declassification process. He queried Vest about the continued sensitivities of NATO military planning and documents relating to Greece and Turkey’s admission to NATO. Pickering intervened at several points to clarify CDC views on declassification procedures and authorities. Ultimately, Newsom upheld the continued secrecy of documents referencing Yugoslavia and those relating to Greek and Turkish entrance into NATO. CDC also secured a postponement of plans to release NATO military planning documents pending further consultations with the NSC.58 Although Newsom upheld existing procedures for reviewing foreign government information in U.S. documents and he explicitly endorsed Trask’s formulation of a balancing test between security and transparency, he accepted EUR and CDC’s arguments about where such a line should be drawn in 1980 and rejected “structural change or new institutions” for dealing with clearance decisions within the Department.59

Anthony Lake’s response to Trask’s Dissent Channel appeal five days later echoed Newsom’s stance at the re-review appeal meeting. Lake agreed with Trask that FRUS was “central to the Department’s adherence to the principle of open government,” but accepted the CDC’s argument that the possible “negative impact upon our ability to conduct an effective diplomacy” made the re-review “proper.” He accepted at face value the CDC’s optimistic projections for completing the re-review and publishing the affected FRUS volumes and reaffirmed the adequacy of the Department’s existing policies and procedures for “balancing national security concerns and the public’s right to know about the history of our foreign policy.” Lake’s response amounted to a total rejection of Trask’s appeal.60

Transparency Malpractice: The Re-Review and the Guatemala Volume

The re-review controversy fueled concerns in the academic community about both the timeliness and the comprehensiveness of FRUS. Within days of Lake’s response, Trask, Baehler, and FRUS General Editor William Slany met with former HAC members Walter LaFeber and Lloyd Gardner to discuss Department of State declassification procedures. Anxious that the CDC would slow declassification and withhold more documents from release, Gardner urged Trask “not [to] sacrifice the comprehensiveness of the series in the effort to attain the twenty year line.”61 In mid-November, the annual HAC meeting also focused on the re-review and its implications. After discussing the re-review, Trask suggested to the Committee that HO could avoid delays and build trust within the Department by self-censoring “documents that have no chance of surviving the clearance process”—like those involving covert operations. “Good common sense needed to be exercised by the historian[s] in the office,” he contended, along with “good judgment in recognizing when to stop arguing.”62 The HAC’s report (published the following spring) warned that, with the creation of the CDC and the tightening of declassification guidelines, “a critical situation has developed, one which threatens the integrity of the Foreign Relations series.”63

This “critical situation” deteriorated even further after the HAC meeting. On November 18, Newsom, citing “protests” from “four foreign governments,” initiated the transfer of HO’s remaining foreign government and interagency declassification responsibilities to the CDC.64 Although these protests turned out to involve inadvertent FOIA releases rather than published FRUS volumes, Assistant Secretary of State for Administration Thomas Tracy maintained that the increasing sensitivity of records dating from the 1950s provided little reason for “treating FRUS materials differently from other documents being reviewed” by the CDC.65 Trask resented Tracy’s equation of FRUS clearances with the rest of the Department’s declassification workload because it “ignored the entire purpose of the Foreign Relations series,” which was “the keystone to the Department’s observance of ‘open government’ and as such enjoys very distinctive and special status.”66

Between late November 1980 and mid-January 1981, Trask tried to defend FRUS’s special status by mobilizing public opposition to the Department’s augmentation of CDC authority. FRUS stakeholders, especially the HAC, mounted an unsuccessful publicity blitz directed at Under Secretary Read, newspapers, and Congress. Read, unmoved, approved the revised Departmental procedures on January 13. In addition to completing the transfer of declassification coordination to CDC, the revised provisions stipulated that in all but the most exceptional circumstances, “the final decision on [FRUS declassification] appeals rests with the Assistant Secretary of the geographic or functional bureau having substantive jurisdiction over the issues involved.”67

With its new authority, CDC transformed the way the Department cleared FGI for FRUS. By consulting with allied governments before unilaterally releasing U.S. documents containing potentially sensitive FGI, CDC predicted that HO would be able “to publish more rather than less.” Although this was occasionally the case, the Department pursued these new consultations to maintain, not relax, secrecy. While the new procedures would only apply to Great Britain, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand at first, McManaway anticipated that the Department could “extend the range of such consultations to include other allied governments.”68 The new procedures went into effect in early 1981.69

FRUS’s interagency partners welcomed the shift from HO to CDC liaison with the Department.70 The CIA lauded “the excellence of the relationship and understanding” that it developed with CDC. Several CDC reviewers visited the Agency soon after they took over declassification coordination responsibilities to obtain guidance on CIA policies regarding releasing “material already published in open literature” and “how to process information showing CIA relationship[s] with foreign liaison services.” After McManaway complained to the Agency in April 1981 that FRUS declassification discussions had taken place outside the CDC channel, his Agency counterpart cited the “incalculable help” that the CDC had provided in “protecting our equities” since that office assumed the FRUS declassification coordination function. The Agency counterpart asked his staff to “strengthen Clay’s [McManaway’s] hand and prevent him from being blindsided in this process.” The Agency’s discovery in June 1981 that HO unilaterally restored material excised by a CIA review only heightened its relief at the CDC’s expanded role in FRUS declassification. By July 1981, the only re-reviewed compilations for which the CIA had not yet restored clearances were “the Middle East volumes and Latin America (all 1952–54), and they are hung up for other reasons as well.” By early 1982, the CIA developed sufficient confidence in the CDC’s judgments to delegate much of their authority to review documents intended for publication in proposed FRUS microfiche supplements.71

As security-minded executive branch officials and foreign governments hailed these changes, HO and the HAC grew increasingly alarmed. The series fell further behind its official goal of a 20-year publication line during the 1980s when, despite CDC assurances, the re-reviews took much longer than promised.72 Of the nine “fast-tracked” volumes scheduled for publication in 1980, one appeared in 1981, two in 1982, three in 1983, two in 1984, and one (after being split into two volumes) in 1987 and 1989.73 To address these production shortfalls, HO proposed in 1981 that CDC be given additional resources to address the “enormous backlog of unpublished volumes.”74

At the same time, however, Trask and Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs Francis McNamara agreed that HO needed to “reassess [its] goals.” With the 20-year line slipping away, the Department embarked on “compensatory activities to mitigate the credibility gap and expand the policy oriented research program.” While half of HO personnel focused on “sustaining the publication of Foreign Relations at its present level and plan for a renewed burst of compiling in two or three years,” the other half were redirected to policy studies to help “upgrade the Department’s role in the making of overall national policy.” To “compensate to some extent for the failure to attain the twenty-year line,” HO also revived the Current Documents series (compiled from unclassified documents) that had been suspended in 1971.75 These measures, McNamara and Trask hoped, would “reduce the gap between announced intentions and actual accomplishments,” “greatly reduce . . . interminable, rancorous arguments between equally dedicated historians and declassifiers,” and “provid[e] historic perspective to illuminate some of the murkier problems for the Department’s policy makers.”76

The downside to McNamara and Trask’s “compensatory activities” was that they “could, if misunderstood, arouse considerable anxiety among the user population.”77 Later in 1981, HO reported to the HAC that “declassification difficulties . . . preclude at this time a further dash to the 20 year line.”78 During the 1982 HAC meeting, Acting General Editor of FRUS John Glennon reassured the Committee that “compiling still continued on a very small scale” sufficient to prevent the staff’s accumulated compiling skills and experience from “disappearing.”79 HO’s 1983 status report to the HAC informed the Committee that it had “resumed the compiling of new Foreign Relations volumes after a pause of more than a year,” although the persisting clearance backlog compelled HO management to triage “volumes with a reasonable assurance of clearance by Department declassification reviewers.”80 The 1980 re-review, the delays that it entailed for FRUS, and the CDC-led declassification process that initiated it all contributed to mounting academic concerns over the timeliness and comprehensiveness of the series.

The re-review also made it “perfectly obvious that Trask really couldn’t stay in the Historian’s Office.” As Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs Francis McNamara recalled in a 1993 oral history interview, the entire re-review ordeal resulted from Ben Read’s determination to prevent “documents that [he and his allies in EUR and CDC] considered sensitive coming out in the Foreign Relations series” without “open dissent” that could generate “newspaper attention.” McNamara recalled Gammon (Trask’s contact in M as the re-review commenced) confiding “that this is all just window dressing, the under secretary doesn’t want these documents to come out.” By 1981, “Dyess was really down on Trask; he wanted to get rid of him.” In the spring McNamara gave Trask a “solomonic” efficiency report that satisfied Dyess and enabled Trask to go “off happily” to a job at the Center for Military History. McNamara’s experience with Trask in 1980 and 1981 led him to observe, “I don’t see how you could have that job without getting in trouble.”81 William Slany, the General Editor of FRUS, served as Acting Historian from the summer of 1981 until he was selected for the permanent job in the spring of 1982. It would not take long for Slany to appreciate McNamara’s insight.

Of the 18 compilations re-reviewed by the CDC in 1980, Foreign Relations, 1952–1954, Volume IV, American Republics generated the most notoriety. Its production illustrated many of the problems confronting HO during the late 1970s and early 1980s, including restricted access to highly-classified intelligence documents and inconsistent declassification practices. In 1981 and 1982, HO reluctantly proceeded with publication despite the volume’s obviously-incomplete account of U.S. activities in Guatemala. In doing so, the volume’s compiler and many of his colleagues took pains to acknowledge the volume’s lacunae in hopes of immunizing themselves and the Department from accusations of fraud or incompetence. Their efforts succeeded in the short term and the volume’s release coincided with academic community initiatives to lobby for accelerating the FRUS series without sacrificing its integrity.

HO’s failed efforts to change CIA clearance practices and the 1980 re-review established the context in which Department of State historians made crucial decisions regarding the Guatemala chapter of the 1952–1954 American Republics volume. In discussions with the CIA during the summer of 1979, a CIA declassification reviewer for the Directorate of Operations explained that “CIA would have to resist publication of anything more than the basic fact that the Agency participated in the overthrow of the Arbenz regime,” but that “CIA would defer to the State Department on the foreign relations aspect of the issue. If the Department . . . determined that no foreign relations problem was involved, such information could be published.” He also explained that, “on questions of policy concerning covert activities, CIA was really only an executive secretariat to the NSC in the later 1950s and 1960s” and that HO should “approach the National Security Council on access to and declassification of the sort of material [it] sought from the CIA.”82

The re-review rendered these assurances irrelevant. During the summer of 1980, the CDC deleted several previously-cleared documents and made numerous excisions in others.83 HO accepted this initial Department re-review in August 1980 and scheduled the volume for “fast-track” publication pending final CIA clearance of additional newly added documentation for the Guatemala chapter.84 When HO contacted the CIA in December to urge the Agency to assign “the highest priority” to completing its review for the volume, the CIA reported that the volume had run into “some problems” as its reviewers consulted with “the State Department desks about it.”85 In June 1981, the CIA reported to CDC that its review of the American Republics volume required “clarification of the Department’s views on release of the material concerning Guatemala.”86 The CIA did not complete its review until March 1982.87

During the interval between HO’s December 1980 prodding of the CIA and the Agency’s eventual response in 1982, Department of State historians debated whether to proceed with publication of the volume. On January 27, 1981, Slany (at that point, still Trask’s deputy and General Editor) included the American Republics volume among a list of volumes to be accelerated in an effort “to close the publication gap and move toward the 20-year line target.”88 In February, Slany reported to the CDC that HO was prepared to forego NSC equities still awaiting clearance to expedite release. He also requested CDC assistance in hastening CIA clearances so the publication process could proceed.89

N. Stephen Kane, the compiler of the Guatemala chapter, urged HO management to delay the volume and pursue additional efforts to protect the integrity of the series. He wanted to wait for CIA clearance decisions on a “supplemental package of editorial notes based on CIA cables” and to appeal “NSC deletions of material which has appeared almost verbatim in previously published volumes.”90 “In the absence of a high-level policy decision prohibiting coverage of covert activities,” he explained, “HO has an obligation, consonant with its original mandate, to make the effort, and to account for its failure, if necessary. If HO permits silence to substitute for substance, and gaps in the record for accountability, the series’ reputation as a credible and objective official documentary publication will not endure.” Although Kane acknowledged that HO could not win every clearance battle, he insisted that giving up on the American Republics volume would not only “seriously erode the credibility of the series,” it would also “send a clear signal to the CIA that if it defers a decision long enough HO will make it voluntarily.” He warned that moving ahead would “radically change the nature of HO’s mission” and “impose a form of self-censorship on the series.” Kane recommended that, if necessary, HO “insert a meaningful disclaimer . . . to account for the lack of coverage” if it failed to secure release of essential information. He also urged HO management to “initiate the appropriate process at higher levels in the Department to redefine the official rationale of the Foreign Relations series and the principles guiding its compilation in accordance with current realities.”91 If FRUS could not be an instrument of transparency, Kane believed, the Department should at least be transparent about its translucency.

Although the HAC and many HO historians endorsed Kane’s recommendations in March and April, Trask decided to proceed with publication irrespective of the CIA’s eventual clearance decisions at the end of April 1981. Trask’s decision reflected his acceptance of post-re-review realities. Senior Department officials had concluded that the traditional standard of transparency for potentially controversial U.S. policies and actions was imprudent. The CIA had shown little enthusiasm for releasing even seemingly innocuous materials about its role in decisionmaking or its presence overseas, to say nothing of documentation of major covert operations. In this context, Trask concluded that obtaining clearances for publishing the full record of U.S. policy in Guatemala during the 1952–1954 period would be impossible and that HO should save whatever bureaucratic leverage it still possessed for less quixotic efforts. To the HO staff and the HAC, he rationalized that “the [uncleared] information is not deemed of sufficient import to merit delay either in the publication of the volume or of the particular compilation within the volume in which the materials in question appear.”92

In the aftermath of the decision to proceed with the American Republics volume, HO accepted further deletions by Department reviewers after a second re-review of the Guatemala chapter in the fall of 1981. The CIA’s March 1982 decisions required “no substantial change” in the material that survived three successive Department declassification reviews.93 In May, HO mounted a partially successful appeal of deletions of and excisions to documents that had been released under FOIA and cited in recently published accounts of the CIA’s involvement in the 1954 coup.94 During a discussion of declassification difficulties at the 1983 HAC meeting, John Glennon (the Acting General Editor) explained that “there were two kinds of ‘No’ from CDC: ‘No’ meaning ‘not now,’ and ‘No’ meaning ‘not ever.’ Guatemala . . . was a ‘not ever’; the Historical Office did the best it could.”95

After electing to move forward with an incomplete volume, HO devised strategies to mitigate the damage. In the spring of 1983, HO managers settled on language for an expanded introduction to the volume that included a disclaimer acknowledging:

the editors did not and could not, under current government declassification policies, procedures, and regulations, attempt to document systematically all aspects of the widening web of official relationships which the United States Government established and maintained in the Western Hemisphere. A more comprehensive accounting of these expanding relationships, particularly in the military and intelligence dimensions, requires readers and researchers to consult official publications and papers of other departments and agencies.

This statement amplified the standard language in the preface that qualified the comprehensiveness of the volume with “necessary security considerations.” Although the disclaimer was artfully vague in describing the limitations imposed on the volume by the Department of State and the Central Intelligence Agency, it did alert careful readers that the volume fell short of FRUS’s typical standards.96

Until the late 1980s, the most negative comments about the volume actually appeared before its release. A September 1983 Washington Post article on the academic community’s “heated conflict” with the Reagan administration over U.S. Government secrecy cited the absence of documentation on the CIA’s role in Guatemala as an example of “stringent new declassification rules that demand excessive secrecy about long-past events.”97 A footnote in a December 1983 “critical appraisal” of FRUS in the Journal of American History described the volume’s coverage of Guatemala as “little more than a bare outline of United States policy in Guatemala” and cited it as a harbinger of a “greater dilemma” for the series than the increasing publication lag: access restrictions and clearance difficulties meant that “the documents that finally appear in the Foreign Relations volumes may not include all those necessary to provide a comprehensive record of major foreign policy decisions but rather only those that can be secured by the historical office staff and can survive the security review process.”98

The Department released the volume on January 3, 1984. A January 4 New York Times article announced that, “after a six year delay, the State Department . . . published the official documentation on American policy toward the overthrow of the leftist Government in Guatemala in 1954. But,” the lead noted, “all material on the covert role of the Central Intelligence Agency and the Defense Department was omitted” from the volume. The Times explained that the American Republics volume “covered the first case in which covert activity played a crucial role in American relations with another Government, but the official American documentation of those relations cannot be published in full.” The article quoted Glennon lamenting that “we were not successful in declassifying everything we wanted.” Glennon explained that “we try to make it as comprehensive as we can” and that, while “there was more that we would have liked to have gotten in . . . we felt it was enough in there to make it worthwhile publishing the volume.”99 On January 5, Glennon advised the Government Printing Office that “potential sales” for the volume could “be in the higher than average range.”100 Despite positive reviews in academic journals,101 the volume reflected many of the threats facing the FRUS series and the broader objective of responsible transparency as HO undertook another acceleration initiative in the mid-1980s.

Accelerating Translucency, 1983–1985

In 1982, President Ronald Reagan replaced Carter’s E.O. 12065 with a new directive on classifying and declassifying national security information. Executive Order 12356 eliminated the previous order’s balancing test and its timetables for systematic review. The driving force for this shift came from within the bureaucracies of executive branch agencies. Clayton McManaway prepared the Department of State’s recommendations to “eliminate automatic declassification,” “further protect foreign government information,” “eliminate systematic review in present form,” and extend classification extension authority to more officials. He also advised phasing out “complicating” provisions such as “the exhortations to give declassification equal weight with classification,” “encourag[ing] personnel to challenge classification,” and “the ‘balancing act’ concept theoretically enabling release of correctly classified information in favor of a vague public interest.” Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs William Dyess conditioned his concurrence with McManaway’s proposals upon CDC assurances that it would prepare “a joint schedule” to maintain the “pace [for] special clearances of documents” for FRUS.102

The new executive order, coupled with the formation of the CDC and the 1980 re-review controversy, inspired concern among transparency advocates that “excessive secrecy” was taking hold in the U.S. Government. In a September 1983 Washington Post article, historians lamented that it was “‘virtually impossible’ to write American diplomatic history after 1950.” HAC member Anna Nelson elaborated that the government’s restrictions made it difficult for historians and international relations scholars to avoid “writ[ing] inadequately and in a distorted fashion. . . . We are depriving our next generation of policy-makers of the proper perspective of what went on.” FRUS publication delays, access restrictions, and clearance problems contributed to this worrying situation and threatened both the integrity and utility of a series that was already being eulogized as “once admired as the finest work of its kind.”103 In December, a Journal of American History review of FRUS amplified these concerns and warned that, “if the interested historical community does not soon act[,] . . . the Foreign Relations series that survives the 1980s may be useless to scholars and embarrassing to a government that claims to provide its citizens with a ‘comprehensive record’ of United States foreign policy.”104

Congress echoed the academic community’s fears by including language on FRUS in the Department’s authorization act in November 1983. The law “expressed concern about the excessive delays currently experienced in the publication of the Department of State’s vital series of historical volumes.” Congress endorsed “publishing within 25 years of the events” and ordered the Historian to explain the reasons for escalating delays and to assess the prospects for meeting a 25-year line.105

The HAC noted these concerns in its annual report to the Department of State. On December 21, 1983, Committee Chair Ernest May informed Secretary of State George Shultz that “the history of American foreign policy after World War II is poorly understood” because “the sources necessary for writing fair and comprehensive histories” were being “withheld from serious scholars.” “More and more of the history,” he lamented, “consists merely of remembered headlines, for scholars cannot see the documents which would enable them to correct the record.” May assured Shultz that “our collective national security interests will be served” if the Department embarked upon “modest steps to improve the conditions for scholarly research.” Specifically, May and the HAC urged Shultz to open historical records belonging to the Department for research at a 25-year line, “lead an effort to make such a policy government-wide,” and order HO to accelerate the production of FRUS volumes “reflective of the whole record, with any necessary omissions specifically identified so that the international scholarly community can retain confidence in the integrity of the series.” By reminding Shultz that “intelligent public and congressional understanding of history is a precondition for sound and effective national policies,” May hoped to convince Shultz that strengthening the Department’s existing FRUS-centered transparency regime would serve the interests of both the U.S. Government and the academic community.106

May’s letter and Congress’s request for a report on FRUS delays galvanized action from the Department. In February 1984, Shultz ordered HO to investigate the steps required to meet the HAC’s recommendations.107 These efforts informed William Slany’s August report to Congress, which diagnosed FRUS’s troubles, and a Department staff study, completed in October, that provided a prescription for accelerating the series. Both the report and the staff study rejected a 25-year line and described a 30-year standard as difficult to meet. As Slany’s report to Congress explained, “a 30-year line is a reasonable and achievable goal for the Foreign Relations series, but a wide range of conceptual and procedural modifications are required if such a goal is to be achieved.” He blamed “a wide range of compiling, clearance, and publishing problems” for the existing delay in the series, but elaborated that “few of the issues are really new.”108

In his report to Congress, Slany cited enduring challenges to timeliness and comprehensiveness that had confronted the series since the 1950s. He described how “uncertainty over the definition [of comprehensiveness] prevents the making of sound and consistent decisions on all phases of the Foreign Relations program.” Slany explained how the 1925 Kellogg Order established a “constant framework for preparation of” FRUS, but “actual compiling practices and the changing expectations of users have increasingly come into conflict with the charter’s principles.” He elaborated that HO’s efforts to improve the quality of FRUS during the 1970s by “systematically us[ing] the records of other agencies,” shift[ing] the focus from “traditional diplomatic exchanges” to the policymaking process, and “extend[ing] the series into the most sensitive and controversial episodes of American intelligence activities and political action in foreign countries” resulted in a “slowdown in the publication of the series.” Slany also cited mounting printing problems to illustrate the impossibility of simultaneously accelerating the series and maintaining its current level of coverage. Citing “sixty years of experience by the Office of the Historian,” Slany recognized “the futility of all efforts to bring [FRUS] closer to currency unless and until careful, even severe, restraint can be exercised on the size of the series.” To explain the Department’s skepticism about the feasibility of meeting a 25-year publication line, Slany cited the “prodigious effort in compiling, editing, declassification, and publication never before attempted or envisaged” that would be required. Slany endorsed a 30-year target that would align FRUS with the Department’s systematic review commitments, “provide a more realistic interval to declassify and desensitize most secrets,” and accord with British practice.109

Slany concluded his report with several cautionary notes. The first involved the “intense” restraint that would be required of FRUS historians to avoid aggravating perennial access, declassification, printing, and scope problems. Such restraint clashed with “demands from within the government and the public for expanded volumes. The prospective size and scope of the series must have full support from within government and from academic and scholarly users.” Secondly, Slany insisted that “criteria of completeness and comprehensiveness of the official foreign affairs record which have been debated over recent years must be defined. The current definition of comprehensiveness has not satisfied academic users.” He cautioned that, “without an agreement on the scope of” FRUS, “any program for publication will, however expensive, be hopelessly burdened with controversy.” Finally, Slany warned that “drawing closer to currency will necessarily result in a larger proportion of documents denied declassification on national security grounds or because of current sensitivity,” which would frustrate the general preference among FRUS’s consumers for “a more comprehensive series, even if published later, than for more selective volumes.”110 Slany recognized that accelerating FRUS would backfire unless the required compromises were “clearly explained, understood, and acknowledged within government and the academic community.”111

As the Department transmitted Slany’s report to Congress, HO completed the staff study on accelerating FRUS production ordered by Secretary Shultz in February.112 The final staff study, submitted for Shultz’s approval on October 10, 1984, provided detailed recommendations for action from HO, the CDC, the Foreign Affairs Information Management Center (FAIM), and the Publishing Services Division (FAIM/PS) to accelerate FRUS production to sustain a 30-year line. These recommendations reinforced the longstanding significance of FRUS by maintaining the close linkage between clearance of Foreign Relations compilations and the broader systematic review undertaken by the Department for records being sent to the National Archives. For HO, the study affirmed Slany’s inclination to “redefine the scope and size of” FRUS to include “only the most important documents and policies and events in American foreign policy,” to “introduce microform supplements . . . to assure the publication of a wide range and variety of official records” notwithstanding the constraints on the printed volumes, to “adhere strictly . . . to size limitations for the series,” and to “limit the number of documents of foreign origin . . . to facilitate declassification.” For the CDC, the study recommended increased resources and enhanced coordination with HO. The study also proposed technological modernization and reformed procedures to streamline the Department’s records management and declassification machinery. Finally, the study advocated forging an executive branch consensus “that the series Foreign Relations of the United States is the preferred and authoritative vehicle for public disclosure of the official foreign affairs record” and called for a new Presidential Directive to promote interagency cooperation. After the November 1984 HAC meeting focused on the staff study, Shultz approved its recommendations in January 1985.113

The Department began implementing the study’s recommendations in June 1985, when Acting Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs Robert Smalley asked Shultz to request a Presidential Directive to facilitate interagency cooperation.114 In September 1985, the NSC suggested revisions to the Department’s proposed language to eliminate the “unintended appearance that the President was advocating disclosure of all information irregardless [sic] of national security and other considerations.”115 With “stylistic adjustments,” HO and the CDC accepted the NSC revisions in October.116

The Presidential Directive, signed by Ronald Reagan on November 12, 1985, translated the transparency and accountability values ascribed to FRUS since the 19th century to conform to the altered national security context of the 1980s. Reagan ordered the Department of State to take the lead in ensuring that FRUS meet the 30-year line by 1990, affirming “that orderly and timely” publication of the series, which provided “the proper vehicle for systematic official disclosure of the major documentation regarding American foreign policy in its proper historical context,” was “extremely important.” The Directive qualified its endorsement that “the historic record when published should be as complete as possible” with explicit reference to “other directives on the release and publication of official information” (E.O. 12356) in addition to “the needs of national security and the expectation of confidentiality in the diplomatic process.” Reagan instructed other agencies to cooperate with the Department of State by providing access to “properly cleared” HO historians and “according the necessary priority” to reviewing selected documents for declassification. Reagan also empowered the Secretary of State to convene interagency meetings to “review and improve cooperative procedures and plans to meet [the] 30-year publication timeframe.” Finally, Reagan also required the Department of State to submit annual status reports on progress toward achieving the 30-year publication target.117

Taken together, the formation of the CDC, the 1980 re-review, and the acceleration initiative of the mid-1980s transformed FRUS from an instrument of responsible historical transparency into a vehicle for U.S. Government translucency. Although FRUS historians gained access to a wider range of records at Presidential Libraries in the mid-1970s, they encountered frustrating obstacles when they tried to declassify and publish the resulting compilations in the early 1980s. The Department of State’s implementation of President Carter’s executive order on classification and declassification strengthened opponents of transparency and caused unintended damage to the Foreign Relations series in 1980. Bruised by the re-review battle within the Department, HO retreated from confrontation over the Guatemala volume in 1981–1982 and embraced a compromise-laden acceleration plan in 1984 and 1985. The erosion of transparency between 1978 and 1985 set FRUS on a course passing through controversy and confrontation from 1986 to 1991.

  1. For a survey of the challenges facing U.S. policymakers in 1979–1980, see Raymond Garthoff, Détente and Confrontation: American-Soviet Relations from Nixon to Reagan, Revised Edition (Washington, DC: The Brookings Institution, 1994), pp. 935–1121.
  2. Kogan to Trask, August 18, 1976, NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, Foreign Relations 2.
  3. Executive Order 12065 (signed June 28, 1978), Federal Register, Vol. 43, No. 128, pp. 28949–28963 (published July 3, 1978). E.O. 12065 established a 20-year line for systematic declassification review, but also protected foreign government information provided in confidence for 30 years. Carter began the process of replacing Nixon’s E.O. 11652 on June 1, 1977, when he issued Presidential Review Memorandum-29 directing “A Comprehensive Review of the Classification System.” See Jimmy Carter Library and Museum, http://www.jimmycarterlibrary.gov/documents/prmemorandums/prm29.pdf; passim, NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, Executive Order 12065 and NSC Implementing Directive and PA/HO Suggestions on Guidelines & PRM–29; passim, NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 3, PRM 29 Working Grp.; PRM 29 (two folders in this box share this name); and PRM29–Working Group; passim, NARA, RG 59, PA Lot File 82D297, Box 9, PRM#29 (Review of the Class. Syst.) (Presidential Review Memorandum) June 1977; PRM#29—Review of the Classification System July 1977; PRM#29 Review of the Classification System August–September 1977; PRM#29 (Review of Class. Syst.) (Presidential Review Memo.) Oct.–Dec.; PRM 29 Jan–Feb. 1978; PRM 29 & E.O. 12065; PRM 29 March–April 1978; and PRM 29 May–June 1978; passim, NARA, RG 59, PA Lot File 82D297, Box 7, E.O. 12065 Classification/Declassification June–July 1978; E.O. 12065 August–October 1978; and E.O. 12065 November–December 1978; and passim, NARA, RG 59, PA Lot File 82D297, Box 6, E.O. 12065 1979. In 1979, David Baehler, the HO declassification adviser, pointed out that “as long as the Foreign Relations series documents are being cleared at a time lag of from 19 or 20 years up to (but not including) 30 years, we have a hybrid of clearance criteria under E.O. 12065. It’s messy and unfortunate, but it’s a fact. Anything defined as US government material is going to be reviewed under systematic review criteria. Anything defined as FGI [foreign government information] is going to be reviewed under mandatory review criteria.” See Baehler to Trask, [May 1979?], NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, Foreign Classified Documents General.
  4. Secretary of State to All Diplomatic and Consular Posts, November 3, 1979, Department of State, State Archiving System (henceforth SAS), 1979 STATE 287775; Read to all Assistant Secretaries, Special Assistants, and Office Heads, November 20, 1978 and Department Notice, November 24, 1978 in Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Dissent Channel Package (1980). For background on the formation of the CDC (including HO assessments of the existing, decentralized system and support for centralized systemic declassification review), see also Department of State, Bureau of Administration, Office of Freedom of Information, Privacy, and Classification, Historical Documents Review Office Record Files, 1950–1993 (Lot File 95D113) (henceforth CDC Lot File 95D113), Box 1, Origins and Functions of CDC; NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, Classification/Declassification Center (CDC); and Charles Stuart Kennedy interview with Clayton McManaway, June 29, 1993, LCM, Foreign Affairs Oral History Collection of the Association for Diplomatic Studies and Training (henceforth ADST Oral History), http://hdl.loc.gov/loc.mss/mfdip.2004mcm01.
  5. For foreign government concerns, see NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, Foreign Classified Documents General; Foreign Gov. Inf.: Great Britain; Foreign Government Information Guidelines; and Classification/Declassification Center (CDC); Ronald Spiers to Thomas Brimelow, March 24, 1975, Document 30 in Malcolm Byrne, “CIA Confirms Role in 1953 Iran Coup: Documents Provide New Details on Mossadeq Overthrow and its Aftermath,” National Security Archive Electronic Briefing Book No. 435, August 19, 2013 (henceforth NSA Electronic Briefing Book 435), http://www2.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/NSAEBB/NSAEBB435/docs/Doc%2030%20-%20March%2024%201975.pdf; U.S. Embassy Stockholm to Secretary of State, March 3, 1978, Department of State, SAS, 1978 STOCKH 00871; U.S. Embassy Tokyo to Secretary of State, November 16, 1978, Department of State, SAS, 1978 TOKYO 20349; U.S. Embassy Rome to Secretary of State (info to U.S. Embassy Bonn, U.S. Embassy London, U.S. Embassy Paris, U.S. Embassy Brussels, and U.S. Mission NATO), February 27, 1979, Department of State, SAS, 1979 ROME 04994; and Department of State, CDC Lot File 95D113, Box 4, UK 1.
  6. Blair to Clayton McManaway (with attached Trask to Blair, May 4, 1979), May 8, 1979, NARA, RG 59, PA Lot File 82D297, Box 6, The Historian’s Office 1979.
  7. For development of FGI guidelines, including HO comments on various drafts, see passim, NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, Foreign Government Information Guidelines and passim, NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 3, Reply to Hodding Carter memo of December 5, 78 re Guidelines for 1950–1954 Records. See especially Secretary of State to All Diplomatic and Consular Posts, April 15, 1979, Department of State, SAS, 1979 STATE 094957 and Kogan to McManaway, June 5, 1979, NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, Foreign Classified Documents General. The CDC meeting with the British is described in Trask to Slany, Kogan, Charles Sampson, Glennon, and Paul Claussen (with attached memorandum of conversation among Geoffrey Blackbourne-Kane, Roger Carrick, McManaway, Laurence Pickering, and Howard Meyers), March 25, 1980, NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, Foreign Gov. Inf: Great Britain.
  8. Baehler through Aandahl to Trask, October 26, 1978, Department of State, Bureau of Public Affairs, Office of the Historian, Paul Claussen Files, 1976–1979 (Lot File 13D284), Box 1, [Chron File October–December 1978].
  9. Stansfield Turner to Vance, June 6, 1979 attached to Hodding Carter to David Newsom, July 23, 1979, NARA, RG 59, PA Lot File 82D297, Box 6, The Historian’s Office 1979.
  10. Kane to Dave [David Baehler], August 9, 1978; Aandahl to Gene Wilson, October 20, 1978; and Gale Allen to Aandahl, January 29, 1979 in Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, 1952–1954, Vol. IV, American Republics Clearance Folder; and [name not declassified] to Don [Wortman], May 12, 1980, CREST, CIA–RDP93B01194R000700010022–0.
  11. Claussen to Slany, October 22, 1980, Department of State, CDC Lot File 95D113, Box 1, CIA General.
  12. Hodding Carter to Newsom, July 28, 1978; Newsom to Frank Carlucci, August 2, 1978; Carlucci to Newsom, August 22, 1978; and Newsom to Carlucci, August 28, 1978 in NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, Foreign Relations 2.
  13. See Allen to McManaway (with attached waiver requests and guidelines), June 28, 1979, Department of State, CDC Lot File 95D113, Box 1, CIA General. Even with these exemptions, CIA characterized E.O. 12065 as “intolerable.” See “Brief History of Systematic Classification Review in CIA” and “Toward a Limited Systematic Review Program,” [no date] in CREST, CIA–RDP85B00552R001000070019–5.
  14. Memorandum of conversation among Glennon, Dave Mabon, Baehler, Landa, Allen, and [5 names not declassified—Classification Review Division staff and Directorate of Operations review officer], September 25, 1979, NARA, RG 59, PA Lot File 82D297, Box 6, The Historian’s Office 1979.
  15. Glennon to Gale Allen, September 27, 1979, NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, Declassification Denials & Challenges.
  16. Allen to Baylor [sic, Baehler], October 28, 1979, NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, Declassification Denials & Challenges.
  17. Trask to Allen, February 6, 1980, Department of State, CDC Lot File 95D113, Box 1, CIA General.
  18. This “particular concern” echoed an earlier CIA characterization of FRUS as “the maximum form of executive disclosure” in August 1979. At a meeting with HO historians, an Information Review Officer for the Directorate of Operations explained that “the Agency is very careful about each clause, sentence, or document that is cleared for publication. The CIA knew that the Soviets would scrutinize each new FRUS volume, as would the British and the French. He emphasized that there was no going back once publication had occurred, so CIA reviewers must be cautious beforehand.” See memorandum of conversation among Trask, Slany, Claussen, Baehler, Allen, Pfeiffer, and [4 names not declassified—Classification Review Division staff and Directorate of Operations review officer], September 7, 1979, NARA, RG 59, PA Lot File 82D297, Box 6, The Historian’s Office 1979.
  19. Thomas White to Trask, July 28, 1980, Department of State, CDC Lot File 95D113, Box 1, CIA General.
  20. McManaway to Blair, March 19, 1980; Trask to Blair, March 26, 1980; and memorandum of conversation among McManaway, Blair, Pickering, Trask, and Baehler, April 2, 1980 in Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Dissent Channel Package (1980); memorandum of conversation between Pickering and Baehler, April 4, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Documents Relating to the Re-Review of Foreign Relations, 1950–1954 (1980).
  21. Foreign Relations of the United States, 1951, vol. 1, National Security Affairs; Foreign Economic Policy, pp. 802–901. See Trask memorandum, [April 11, 1980], NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, Foreign Relations 2. In October 1981, over a year after the release of the volume, the Canadian Government protested the publication of “very sensitive aspects of Canadian-American defense cooperation” in the 1951 FRUS volume and requested that “no agency, official, or former official of the US Government make public in any form, without prior consultation with Canadian authorities, any document relating to the use of Canadian airspace and facilities by SAC aircraft.” U.S. Embassy Ottawa to Secretary of State, October 14, 1981, Department of State, SAS, 1981 OTTAWA 06226. Rising popular agitation against NATO’s December 12, 1979 “dual-track” Intermediate Nuclear Forces deployment decision increased the sensitivity of U.S. arrangements with allied governments for the use of their basing facilities in the event of nuclear war with the Soviet Union. See Lawrence Wittner, Toward Nuclear Abolition: A History of the World Nuclear Disarmament Movement, 1971 to the Present (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2003), pp. 63–105.
  22. Don Wortman to Read, April 29, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Dissent Channel Package (1980). Subsequent correspondence prepared by HO and transmitted to CIA over Ben Read’s signature explained that CIA had in fact reviewed and cleared the documents in question between June 1976 and March 1977. Read also sent another letter, prepared by the CDC, to CIA promising “close collaboration between your Agency and this Department in order to maintain the quality and usefulness of the series.” See Hodding Carter to Read, May 8, 1980 attached to Executive Secretary to Assistant Secretary of State for Administration, May 28, 1980, Department of State, CDC Lot File 95D113, Box 1, CIA General and Read to Wortman, May 23, 1980, NARA, RG 59, CFPF 1980, P800080–0798.
  23. George Vest to Read, April 11, 1980 and Read to all Assistant Secretaries, April 11, 1980 in Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Dissent Channel Package (1980).
  24. [Name not declassified—Chief, Information Services Staff] to Trask, April 21, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Dissent Channel Package (1980).
  25. Trask memorandum, April 11, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Dissent Channel Package (1980).
  26. Trask to Vest, April 14, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Dissent Channel Package (1980).
  27. Trask to Hodding Carter, April 15, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Dissent Channel Package (1980).
  28. Hodding Carter to Vest, April 17, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Dissent Channel Package (1980).
  29. Trask to Dyess, April 23, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Documents Relating to the Re-Review of Foreign Relations, 1950–1954 (1980).
  30. Trask to Dyess, April 28, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Documents Relating to the Re-Review of Foreign Relations, 1950–1954 (1980).
  31. Draft Hodding Carter to Read (tab 7 of Trask to Hodding Carter, May 2, 1980), Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Documents Relating to the Re-Review of Foreign Relations, 1950–1954 (1980).
  32. Trask memorandum, June 2, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Clearance/Publication Order for 1951–1954 Volumes (June 1980).
  33. Trask to Hodding Carter, May 2, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Documents Relating to the Re-Review of Foreign Relations, 1950–1954 (1980).
  34. Memorandum of conversation among Pickering, Wendell Woodbury, Stuart McIntyre, Kane, Landa, and Sanford, May 13, 1980, NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, Foreign Relations 2.
  35. Trask to Dyess, May 22, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Dissent Channel Package (1980).
  36. McManaway to Oversight Committee for the Department’s Information Security Program (E.O. 12065), May 27, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Dissent Channel Package (1980).
  37. Trask to Dyess, May 23, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Dissent Channel Package (1980).
  38. Trask memorandum, June 2, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Clearance/Publication Order for 1951–1954 Volumes (June 1980).
  39. Baehler’s statement was misleading. Although FRUS did not cause significant “foreign policy difficulties,” volumes did, on occasion, irritate foreign governments. See chapters 7 and 8.
  40. Baehler memorandum, [no date] and memorandum of conversation among Robert Miller, Samuel Gammon, McManaway, Pickering, Paul Washington, Dyess, Trask, Slany, and Baehler, June 9, 1980 in Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Dissent Channel Package (1980). See also [Trask], “Charges Relating to CDC,” talking points, and “Memo for the Record (notes),” June 5, 1980 and [Trask] memorandum, June 27, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Clearance/Publication Order for 1951–1954 Volumes (June 1980).
  41. Trask to Anthony Lake, June 11, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Dissent Channel Package (1980). Despite Trask’s request to restrict distribution of the Dissent Channel appeal from M and the CDC, an official from M requested to review the appeal later in June and Trask agreed to remove the distribution restriction. See [Baehler] note, June 24, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Clearance/Publication Order for 1951–1954 Volumes (June 1980) and Lake to Trask, June 30, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Dissent Channel Package (1980).
  42. Trask to members of the Advisory Committee on Historical Diplomatic Documentation, June 11, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Dissent Channel Package (1980). Word of the re-review and concerns over the clearance of foreign government information had already reached the academic community in May. See Gardner to George McGovern and Frank Church, May 6, 1980; Trask to Hodding Carter, May 12, 1980; and McGovern to Brian Atwood, May 14, 1980 in Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Dissent Channel Package (1980); and Trask to Gary Hess, June 3, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Clearance/Publication Order for 1951–1954 Volumes (June 1980).
  43. Trask memo, June 18, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Clearance/Publication Order for 1951–1954 Volumes (June 1980). For HO guidance for Read’s speech to SHAFR, see Trask to Francis McNamara (with attached talking points), August 8, 1980, NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, Foreign Relations 2. For Trask’s speech to SHAFR, see planned remarks, August 14, 1980, Department of State, HAC Lot File 96D292, Box 4, 1980–Correspondence. For Dyess’s speech, see planned remarks, NARA, RG 59, PA Lot File 82D297, Box 1, PA/HO.
  44. Trask to Felix Vargas and Elaine Morton, July 3, 1980 and Trask to Morton, July 7, 1980 in Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Dissent Channel Package (1980). To the latter memo, Trask attached the various documents contained in the Dissent Channel Package (1980) folder.
  45. Trask to Morton, August 28, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Documents Relating to the Re-Review of Foreign Relations, 1950–1954 (1980).
  46. Trask to Morton, September 9, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Documents Relating to the Re-Review of Foreign Relations, 1950–1954 (1980).
  47. McManaway to Oversight Committee for the Department’s Information Security Program (E.O. 12065), June 27, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Dissent Channel Package (1980); and McManaway to Oversight Committee for the Department’s Information Security Program (E.O. 12065), July 23, 1980 and McManaway to Oversight Committee for the Department’s Information Security Program (E.O. 12065), September 15, 1980 in Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Documents Relating to the Re-Review of Foreign Relations, 1950–1954 (1980).
  48. Trask to McNamara, September 23, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Documents Relating to the Re-Review of Foreign Relations, 1950–1954 (1980). By early November, the re-review had already fallen behind schedule. In a report to Newsom, Dyess pointed out that only two of the 18 compilations being re-reviewed (two others relating to Iran had been deferred indefinitely) had “run the full course preparatory to publication.” While HO had received information about four other manuscripts, it still had no response from CDC concerning two-thirds of the re-review workload that was supposed to have been completed entirely by November 1. On November 18, the CDC presented only a preliminary and incomplete assessment rather than a full review of the 20 volumes in question. Baehler judged the report “not a reliable indication of what will be deleted upon arrival of formal judgments.” At the conclusion of an 8-month re-review process, CDC was no closer to providing HO staff with clarity about the criteria employed to determine excisions. See Dyess to Newsom, November 4, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Documents Relating to the Re-Review of Foreign Relations, 1950–1954 (1980) and D[avid] M B[aehler] to D[avid] F T[rask], January 8, 1981, Department of State, Claussen Papers Lot File 08D437, Box 7, Chron File January 1981.
  49. Claussen to Slany, September 16, 1980, NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, FRUS Rereview 1980. CDC reviewer William Galloway (formerly a political officer at the U.S. Embassy in London and special assistant to Read) staked out the extreme anti-openness position later in September. He asserted that publishing documents in FRUS gave “them a stature they would not possess if released elsewhere.” He told the historians that “the KGB is [FRUS’s] best customer and that we must accordingly be extremely careful in publishing records in” the series. In Baehler’s eyes, Galloway “displayed extreme condescension” in his “conviction that only . . . front-line officers could possibly be aware of all of the foreign policy implications publication might have.” Moreover, “Galloway completely ignored the basic purpose of the series . . . to inform the American people of their government’s foreign policy. His exclusive concern was with the effect that publication would have on foreign governments or on US relations with those governments . . . never mentioning the need to maintain the trust and confidence of the American people as an element of [the] national interest.” To Galloway (and others who shared his views), FRUS was “a tool to be used for political purposes in . . . reinforcing favorable attitudes of the US among US allies.” Baehler characterized Galloway as more hostile to transparency than most in CDC, but reflective of CIA views. See Baehler to Trask, September 17, 1980, NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, FRUS Rereview 1980.
  50. Trask to McNamara, September 18, 1980, NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, FRUS Rereview 1980.
  51. Lawrence Eagleburger to Robert Barry, July 14, 1980, NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, FRUS Rereview 1980.
  52. Baehler note, May 30, 1980 attached to Slany to Pickering, June 5, 1980, NARA, RG 59, Entry UD–07D–64: Bureau of Public Affairs, Office of the Historian, FRUS Clearance Files, 1948–1954 (96D274) (henceforth FRUS Clearance Lot File 96D274), Box 4, 1951, Vol. III, Eur. Sec. & Ger. Quest. CDC transmitted its formal clearance memorandum on June 13. See Pickering to Trask, June 13, 1980, NARA, RG 59, CFPF 1980, P800143–0198. HO comments on requested CDC deletions can be found in “CDC actions (per 6/13/80 memo), 1951, v. III,” [no date], NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, Foreign Relations 2.
  53. Trask to Dyess, [no date—June/July 1980], NARA, RG 59, FRUS Clearance Lot File 96D274, Box 4, 1951, Vol. III, Eur. Sec. & Ger. Quest. (also in NARA, RG 59, CFPF 1980, P800143–0190) and draft Dyess and Vest to Newsom (with attached comments on appealed documents), July 28, 1980, NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, FRUS Rereview 1980.
  54. “EUR Comments on Historian David Trask’s Memorandum (TAB A),” August 12, 1980, NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, Foreign Relations 2 (also in NARA, RG 59, CFPF 1980, P800143–0201).
  55. “PA Comments on EUR Memorandum Dated August 12, 1980,” August 29, 1980 (attachment to revised draft McNamara and Vest to Newsom, [no date]), NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, FRUS Rereview 1980 (also in NARA, RG 59, CFPF 1980, P800143–0204).
  56. Vest to Newsom, September 12, 1980, NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, Foreign Relations 2.
  57. Dyess and Vest to Newsom, September 13, 1980, NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, FRUS Rereview 1980. Trask sent a briefing memo to Dyess on October 8. See Trask to Dyess (and attached “Views of the Office of the Historian on Handling Foreign Government Information,” [no date]), October 8, 1980, NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, FRUS Rereview 1980.
  58. Later in October, Dyess complained to Newsom that the CDC had undermined his decision and informally “established the NSC staff as a final appeal and arbiter in declassification questions on defense-related categories of information.” Trask complained that the CDC’s consultations improperly interfered with HO’s responsibility to coordinate FRUS declassification with other government agencies. See Pickering to Brenda Reger, October 17, 1980; Trask to Terry [McNamara] (with attached draft Dyess to Newsom), October 29, 1980; and Trask to Dyess (with attached Trask to Dyess, October 30, 1980), October 30, 1980, in NARA, RG 59, PA Lot File 82D297, Box 1, PA/HO; Reger to Pickering, October 24, 1980 and Dyess to Newsome [sic], October 29, 1980 in NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, FRUS Rereview 1980.
  59. Memorandum of conversation among Newsom, [Mildred] Patterson, Vest, H. Allen Holmes, Thomas Tracy, Pickering, Knute Malmborg, Gammon, Morton, Dyess, McNamara, Trask, and Baehler and Baehler memorandum, October 9, 1980, in Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Documents Relating to the Re-Review of Foreign Relations, 1950–1954 (1980). Newsom’s decision is recorded on p. 8 of Dyess and Vest to Newsom, September 13, 1980, NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, FRUS Rereview 1980. See also Newsom to Dyess and Vest, October 14, 1980, NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, FRUS Rereview 1980 for Newsom’s endorsement of existing appeal procedures. When HO appealed EUR excisions for FRUS, 1952–1954, vol. I to Newsom in November, EUR insisted that they and CDC resolve the matter with PA. See Holmes to McNamara, December 8, 1980, NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, FRUS Rereview 1980.
  60. Lake to Trask, October 14, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Documents Relating to the Re-Review of Foreign Relations, 1950–1954 (1980). Lake used language drawn from the 1925 Kellogg Order that formalized FRUS editorial methodologies and defined acceptable grounds for excisions to justify the re-review. See chapter 6 and Department of State, Office of the Historian website, http://history.state.gov/historicaldocuments/frus-history/research/1925-order .
  61. Memorandum of conversation among LaFeber, Gardner, Trask, Slany, and Baehler, October 17, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Documents Relating to the Re-Review of Foreign Relations, 1950–1954 (1980).
  62. Minutes of 1980 HAC meeting, pp. 15 and 18–19, Department of State, HAC Lot File 96D292, Box 4, 1981—Minutes, Report.
  63. Unterberger, “1980 Report of the Advisory Committee on Historical Diplomatic Documentation,” PS (Spring 1981), pp. 274–281 (quote from p. 280).
  64. Baehler memorandum, November 19, 1980,” NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, Foreign Relations 2.
  65. Tracy to Dyess, December 3, 1980, NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, Foreign Classified Documents General.
  66. Trask to Dyess, December 8, 1980 attached (as Document 36) to Kogan, “Department of State Publication of Foreign Government Documents,” June 1981, Department of State, HO Research Projects Lot File 13D289, Box 7, R.P. No. 1261: Department of State Publication of Foreign Government Documents.
  67. McNamara to Dyess and Trask (with attached Tracy to Department Oversight Committee for the Department’s Information Security Program (E.O. 12065), January 5, 1981), January 1, 1981 and Dyess to Tracy (with attached draft FAM revisions), January 9, 1981 in NARA, RG 59, PA Lot File 82D297, Box 1, PA/HO; Trask to McNamara (with attached Unterberger to David Trask, January 16, 1981 and correspondence attached thereto), January 23, 1981; Trask to McNamara (with attached Unterberger to Trask, January 27, 1981 and correspondence attached thereto), February 9, 1981; Walter Cutler to Henry Reuss, February 13, 1981; Lloyd Bentsen to Unterberger, February 20, 1981; Reuss to Unterberger, February 24, 1981; and Phil Gramm to Unterberger, March 3, 1981 in Department of State, HAC Lot File 96D292, Box 4, 1981–Correspondence; Alexander George to Trask (with attached George to Read, January 12, 1981), January 26, 1981, Department of State, HAC Lot File 96D292, Box 4, 1981–Minutes, Report; and Foreign Affairs Manual section 247, January 13, 1981 attached (as Document 37) to Kogan, “Department of State Publication of Foreign Government Documents,” June 1981, Department of State, HO Research Projects Lot File 13D289, Box 7, R.P. No. 1261: Department of State Publication of Foreign Government Documents; and Richard Fairbanks to Charles Percy, April 27, 1981, Department of State, Central Foreign Policy Files 1981 (P-Reels) (henceforth P-Reels preceded by the appropriate year), P810056–0145.
  68. Draft McManaway to the Oversight Committee for the Department’s Information Security Program (E.O. 12065), November 18, 1980, Department of States, CDC Lot File 95D113, Box 1, Origins and Functions of CDC.
  69. McManaway to Michael Armacost and Frank Bennett, February 5, 1981, Department of States, CDC Lot File 95D113, Box 3, Australia: Pre-1985; McManaway to Holmes and Robert Funseth, February 5, 1981, Department of States, CDC Lot File 95D113, Box 3, British Government; McManaway to Eagleburger (with attached John Campbell memo, May 13, 1981; Pickering talking points, July 13, 1981; and memorandum of conversation among Eily Blayney, Roger Carrick, McManaway, Pickering, Campbell, and Galloway, July 13, 1981), July 24, 1981, Department of States, CDC Lot File 95D113, Box 4, UK 1; Secretary of State to U.S. Embassy Ottawa, October 23, 1981, Department of State, SAS, 1981 STATE 282725; and Secretary of State to U.S. Embassy Canberra (info to U.S. Consulate Melbourne, U.S. Consulate Sydney, and Perth), March 2, 1983, Department of State, SAS, 1983 STATE 056402. Although Thomas Niles to Hans-Theodor Wallau, July 21, 1983, Department of State, CDC Lot File 95D113, Box 4, FRG invited the West German Government to consult with CDC on “some understanding on a basis for regularizing consultations between our governments on declassification matters,” Secretary of State to U.S. Embassy Bonn, November 5, 1983, Department of State, SAS, 1983 STATE 317126 reported that the “Dept has not had a direct reply.” See also U.S. Embassy Bonn to Secretary of State, April 30, 1984, Department of State, SAS, 1984 BONN 11380.
  70. Recall the confusion about CIA clearances for FRUS, 1951, vol. I in April and May of 1980 and the more recent PA complaint about CDC contact with the NSC in October (described above). See Trask to Pickering, April 11, 1980; Pickering to Trask, April 16, 1980; and Trask to Pickering, April 23, 1980 in Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Dissent Channel Package (1980); and Trask to Alfred Goldberg, September 15, 1980, NARA, RG 59, Kogan Papers Lot File 83D230, Box 2, Foreign Relations 2.
  71. See [name not declassified] through [Chief, Administration Branch] to [Chief, Classification Review Branch], April 7, 1981, CREST, CIA–RDP85B00236R000400020053–1; [name not declassified] (for White) to William Donnelly, April 23, 1981, CREST, CIA–RDP85B00236R000400020049–6; White to McManaway, May 15, 1981 and Pickering to McManaway, July 8, 1981 attached to White to McManaway, June 5, 1981 in Department of State, CDC Lot File 95D113, Box 1, CIA General (the White to McManaway letter is also available in CREST, CIA–RDP85B00236R000400020043–2); [name not declassified—Administration Branch] through Chief, Administration Branch to Chief, Classification Review Division, June 15, 1981, CREST, CIA–RDP85B00236R000400020039–7; [name not declassified—Chief, Classification Review Division] to Pickering, June 25, 1981, CREST, CIA–RDP85B00236R000400020038–8; and [name not declassified—Chief, Classification Review Division] to Pickering, February 24, 1982, CREST, CIA–RDP85B00236R000400030009–9.
  72. D[avid] M B[aehler] to D[avid] F T[rask], January 8, 1981, Department of State, Claussen Papers Lot File 08D437, Box 7, Chron File January 1981.
  73. The “fast-tracked” volumes were: European Security and the German Question (1951, vol. III), Korea and China (1951, vol. VII), General Political and Economic (1952–1954, vol. I), American Republics (1952–1954, vol. IV); West European Security (1952–1954, vol. V), Africa and South Asia (1952–1954, vol. XI), Indochina (1952–1954, vol. XIII), Geneva Conference (1952–1954, vol. XVI), and Africa and South Asia (1955–1957, vols. VIII and XVIII).
  74. Draft Dyess to Richard Kennedy, June 4, 1981 attached to Trask to McNamara, June 4, 1981, NARA, RG 59, PA Lot File 82D297, Box 1, PA/HO.
  75. The Current Documents series represented a sporadic Department effort to revive the 19th century FRUS paradigm of contemporary release. In the 1950s, the Historical Division began publishing compilations of public U.S. Government statements about its foreign policy in an attempt to mitigate the increasing FRUS publication lag. At the first HAC meeting in December 1957, Dulles extolled a compilation of 1950–1955 documents as “go[ing] quite a ways toward meeting the needs of scholars” even if it “d[id] not technically meet the conventional requirements” of FRUS. The Historical Office stopped producing Current Documents in 1971 (in accordance with an earlier recommendation from the HAC to direct limited resources to FRUS). The Historian’s Office again suspended work on the revived Current Documents series to concentrate on producing Foreign Relations after the passage of the FRUS statute in 1991. See minutes of 1957 HAC meeting, p. 73, Department of State, HAC Lot File 03D130, 1957–HAC–Annual Meeting; report of 1967 HAC meeting, pp. 5–6, Department of State, HAC Lot File 96D292, Box 2, 1967—Report; and record of 1971 HAC meeting, p. 11, Department of State, HAC Lot File 96D292, Box 2, 1971–Minutes.
  76. McNamara and Trask to Dyess, March 13, 1981 attached to Trask to Slany, Petersen, Sampson, Glennon, and Claussen, March 16, 1981, Department of State, Claussen Papers Lot File 08D437, Box 7, Chron File March 1981.
  77. McNamara and Trask to Dyess, March 13, 1981 attached to Trask to Slany, Petersen, Sampson, Glennon, and Claussen, March 16, 1981, Department of State, Claussen Papers Lot File 08D437, Box 7, Chron File March 1981.
  78. FRUS status report, November 1981, Department of State, HAC Lot File 96D292, Box 4, 1981–Correspondence. See also Raymond Seitz to Richard Kennedy (with attached talking points), November 10, 1981, Department of State, 1981 P-Reels, P810159–0615. The HAC’s report following the 1981 meeting endorsed the compilation slow down, concluding that “given the delay in the declassification and publication of volumes of FRUS that have already been compiled . . . increasing use of staff time . . . in policy-related research should have no adverse impact upon FRUS at this time. On the contrary, to the extent that such activity enhances the Historical Office’s value to the Department of State . . . and affords [HO staff] the opportunity to re-establish direct contact with desk officers which the creation of the CDC had served to sever, the long-term impact may be positive.” Report of 1981 HAC meeting attached to Taylor to Dean Fischer, June 16, 1982, Department of State, HAC Lot File 96D292, Box 4, 1982–Report, Minutes, Correspondence.
  79. Minutes of 1982 HAC meeting, Department of State, HAC Lot File 96D292, Box 4, 1982–Report, Minutes, Correspondence.
  80. HO status report, October 1983, Department of State, HAC Lot File 96D292, Box 4, Correspondence-1983-Meeting.
  81. Charles Stuart Kennedy interview with Francis McNamara, March 18, 1993, Library of Congress, ADST Oral History, http://hdl.loc.gov/loc.mss/mfdip.2004mcn01 and Francis Gomez to George, August 13, 1981, Department of State, HAC Lot File 96D292, Box 4, 1981–Correspondence.
  82. Memorandum of conversation among Trask, Slany, Claussen, Baehler, Allen, Pfeiffer, and [4 names not declassified], September 7, 1979, NARA, RG 59, PA Lot File 82D297, Box 6, The Historian’s Office 1979.
  83. William Dietrich to Aandahl (with attached ARA comments), July 6, 1978 and Nina Noring memorandum, June 17, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Clearance/Publication Order for 1951–1954 Volumes (June 1980); Baehler to Pickering, June 26, 1980 and Pickering to Trask (with attached Kane to Noring, August 4, 1980 and Noring memorandum, August 5, 1980), July 28, 1980 in Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, 1952–1954, Vol. IV, American Republics Clearance Folder.
  84. Trask to [name not declassified], June 17, 1980; Trask to [name not declassified], August 11, 1980; and Trask to [name not declassified], September 24, 1980 in Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, 1952–1954, Vol. IV, American Republics Clearance Folder.
  85. Noring memorandum, December 16, 1980, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, Dissent Channel Package (1980).
  86. White to McManaway, June 5, 1981, CREST, CIA–RDP85B00236R000400020043–2 (also in Department of State, CDC Lot File 95D113, Box 1, CIA General). In effect, CIA consultations with State sparked a second, informal re-review that lasted until the end of 1981. At the end of 1981, the Agency reaffirmed—in response to an HO appeal of excisions in another volume through CDC—its opposition to releasing information that “pinpoints the Agency’s presence in a foreign country, reveal[s] our capabilities . . . , and indicate[s] a foreign contact.” See [name not declassified] memorandum, December 8, 1981, CREST, CIA–RDP85B00236R000400020005–4.
  87. Pickering to Slany, March 24, 1982, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, 1952–1954, Vol. IV, American Republics Clearance Folder.
  88. Slany through Trask to McNamara, January 27, 1981, Department of State, Claussen Papers Lot File 08D437, Box 7, Chron File January 1981.
  89. Slany to Pickering, February 19, 1981, Department of State, Claussen Papers Lot File 08D437, Box 7, Chron File Feb. 1981.
  90. In 1982, Kane cited Stephen Ambrose (with Richard Immerman), Ike’s Spies: Eisenhower and the Espionage Establishment (Garden City: Doubleday, 1981); Blanche Wiesen Cook, The Declassified Eisenhower: A Divided Legacy of Peace and Political Warfare (Garden City: Doubleday, 1981); Richard Immerman, “Guatemala as Cold War History,” Political Science Quarterly, Winter 1980–1981, pp. 629–653; and Stephen Schlesinger and Stephen Kinzer, Bitter Fruit: The Untold Story of the American Coup in Guatemala (Garden City: Doubleday, 1982) in his appeals to include more documentation on the Guatemala covert operation in the volume. See Kane through Claussen to Glennon, May 5, 1982 (attached to Kane through Claussen to Glennon, May 11, 1982) in Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, 1952–1954, Vol. IV, American Republics Clearance Folder.
  91. Kane through Claussen and Slany to Trask, March 18, 1981, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, 1952–1954, Vol. IV, American Republics Clearance Folder.
  92. Glennon, Robert McMahon, Edward Keefer, Louis Smith, David Patterson, Sherrill Wells, Landa, Stanley Shaloff, James Miller, Mabon, Harriet Schwar, Sanford, Carl Raether, Evans Gerakas, and Madeline Chi through Slany to Trask, March 20, 1981 and M. P[aul] C[laussen] to W[illiam] Z S[lany], March 23, 198[1] in Department of State, Paul Claussen Lot File 08D437, Box 7, Chron File March 1981; Trask to Glennon, McMahon, Keffer [sic], Smith, Patterson, Landa, Shaloff, Miller, Mabon, Sanford, Raether, Gerakas, Wells, Schwar, and Chi, March 23, 1981; Trask to Slany, April 27, 1981; and Trask to Unterberger, April 27, 1981 in Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, 1952–1954, Vol. IV, American Republics Clearance Folder; Unterberger to Trask, April 10, 1981, Department of State, HAC Lot File 96D292, Box 4, 1981–Correspondence. See also [name not declassified, Administration Branch] through [Chief, Administration Branch] to [Chief, Classification Review Division], April 8, 1981, CREST, CIA–RDP85B00236R000400020052–2 and [name not declassified] memorandum, April 9, 1981, CREST, CIA–RDP85B00236R000400040051–3. In the summer of 1981, after Trask’s departure and Slany’s elevation, Paul Claussen, Chief of the Western Hemisphere, African, and Middle Eastern Division, recommended, “because it is likely that we will encounter considerable further delay in obtaining clearance of the compilation on Guatemala in this volume, . . . that we remove the compilation (or portions of it) for future publication in another Foreign Relations volume.” He was particularly interested in creating a “special Foreign Relations volume . . . to contain certain difficult-to clear compilations,” which could “liberate the balance of the affected volume for publication within the coming year.” See Claussen to Slany, July 10, 1981, Department of State, Claussen Papers Lot File 08D437, Box 7, Chron File July 1981. On August 18, Slany had lunch with Laurence Pickering and the Chief of the CIA’s Classification Review Division. The CIA officer reported that he “found Bill Slany to be quite an easy-going person, who seemed to be understanding of our problems, which . . . bodes well for our relationship in the future.” See [name not declassified—Chief, Classification Review Division] memorandum August 19, 1981, CREST, CIA–RDP85B00236R000400020014–4.
  93. Memorandum on “Guatemala Chapter,” [no date]; Pickering to Slany (with attached Glennon note), March 24, 1982; Slany to Pickering, April 14, 1982; and John Burke to William Price, April 15, 1982 in Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, 1952–1954, Vol. IV, American Republics Clearance Folder.
  94. Kane through Claussen to Slany, May 28, 1981, Department of State, Claussen Papers Lot File 08D437, Box 7, Chron File June 1981; Kane through Claussen to Glennon (with attached “Introduction”; “Note on Sources”; Kane through Claussen to Glennon, May 5, 1982; and Kane through Claussen to Glennon, May 10, 1982), May 11, 1982; Glennon to Pickering, May 12, 1982; and Charles Flowerree to Slany, December 30, 1982 in Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, 1952–1954, Vol. IV, American Republics Clearance Folder.
  95. Minutes of 1983 HAC meeting, Department of State, HAC Lot File 96D292, Box 4, Correspondence - 1983 - Meeting.
  96. Introduction to Foreign Relations of the United States, 1952–1954, vol. IV, The American Republics (http://history.state.gov/historical documents/frus1952-54v04/introduction). Claussen through Glennon to Slany, September 26, 1983, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, 1952–1954, Vol. IV, American Republics Clearance Folder explains that the language of the introduction had been approved in the spring. Slany was less concerned about the Guatemala chapter than his staff. He asked, “Why should Guatemala be so highlighted and why should we stumble about on the whereabouts of military and intelligence activities in the volume” as HO revised the volume summary that would be distributed with review copies. He urged his colleagues to “try to be positive in our approach, helpful to writers of articles and reviewers, and upbeat about our methodology” in the final draft. Slany to Petersen, Glennon, Carol Becker, and Claussen, October 25, 1983, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, 1952–1954, Vol. IV, American Republics Clearance Folder.
  97. Ian Black, “Tightened Rules Keep Nation’s Secrets Too Long, Historians Say,” Washington Post, September 10, 1983, p. A3.
  98. Lorraine Lees and Sandra Treadway, “A Future for Our Diplomatic Past? A Critical Appraisal of the Foreign Relations Series,” Journal of American History (December 1983), pp. 621–629 (quotes from pp. 626–627).
  99. Bernard Gwertzman, “U.S. Tells of ’54 Guatemala Invasion,” New York Times, January 4, 1984, p. A3.
  100. Glennon to Stanley Field, January 5, 1984, Department of State, FRUS Clearance Lot File 04D114, Box 3, 1952–1954, Vol. IV, American Republics Clearance Folder.
  101. Elmer Plischke, a former member of the HAC, opined that the “volume continues to evidence the lofty standards maintained by the Office of the Historian . . . over the years, and reflects its dedication to the arduous but important process of revealing the course of American diplomacy on a scholarly, systematic, detailed, reliable, and serviceable basis.” Joseph Smith, a professor at the University of Exeter, concluded that although “the section on Guatemala underlines the difficulty of dealing with still politically sensitive subjects and shows how it is not practicable for the series to become ‘the comprehensive record’ of major policy decisions, . . . the editors have competently produced a large volume of significant documents that will serve as a most valuable tool of reference and information.” See Plischke review of Foreign Relations of the United States, 1952–1954, vol. IV, The American Republics in American Journal of International Law (July 1984), pp. 735–739 (quote from p. 739) and Smith review of Foreign Relations of the United States, 1952–1954, Vol. iv, The American Republics in English Historical Review (July 1986), p. 753.
  102. Executive Order 12356 (signed April 2, 1982), Federal Register, Vol. 47, No. 66, pp. 14874–14884 (published April 6, 1982) and correction of April 8, 1982 in Vol. 47, No. 70, p. 15557 (published April 12, 1982); Dyess through McManaway to Richard Kennedy, April 22, 1981, Department of State, 1981 P-Reels, P810075–1081; and McManaway to Richard Kennedy (with attached McManaway to Steven Garfinkel), May 1, 1981, Department of State, 1981 P-Reels, P810075-1070-1078. During the 1985 HAC annual meeting, CDC chief Ambassador John Burke explained that “the recent executive order was more stringent than its predecessors . . . , but . . . it had been drafted not by the White House but by the Information Security Oversight Office (ISOO)” and “reflected the experience of many officials from different agencies.” Burke echoed this characterization in a 1989 oral history interview, when he claimed that “certain deficiencies in the Carter Order . . . had to be corrected” and that “the stricter provisions were actually all proposed by bureaucrats and not by the White House.” See minutes of 1985 HAC meeting, p. 17, Department of State, HAC Lot File 96D292, Box 4, Minutes 1985 and Charles Stuart Kennedy interview with John Burke, May 26, 1989, Library of Congress, ADST Oral History, http://hdl.loc.gov/loc.mss/mfdip.2004bur03.
  103. Ian Black, “Tightened Rules Keep Nation’s Secrets Too Long, Historians Say,” Washington Post, September 10, 1983, p. A3.
  104. Lorraine Lees and Sandra Treadway, “A Future for Our Diplomatic Past? A Critical Appraisal of the Foreign Relations Series,” Journal of American History (December 1983), pp. 621–629 (quotes from p. 629).
  105. P.L. 98–164; H.R. Report 98–563, Conference Report for H.R. 2915, November 17, 1983, Department of State, HAC Lot File 96D292, Box 4, Correspondence-1983-Meeting and “Bill Summary & Status, 98th Congress (1983–1984), H.R. 2915, CRS Summary,” Library of Congress, Congress.gov website, http://beta.congress.gov/bill/98th-congress/house-bill/2915.
  106. Ernest May to George Shultz, December 21, 1983, Annex 1 of FRUS Staff Study, October 1984, Department of State, CDC Lot File 95D113, Box 2, Staff Study 1984. HO had already, after “careful consideration, planning, and discussion with the Bureau [PA] and A/CDC,” proposed accelerating the production of FRUS volumes documenting U.S. policy toward Vietnam. HO assured the HAC that “the volumes on Vietnam, when completed, will represent the most comprehensive documentary record of this most important subject available in any form.” See “Foreign Relations of the U.S. (The Vietnam Record),” [October 1983] and Glennon to Slany, October 3, 1983 in Department of State, HAC Lot File 96D292, Box 4, Correspondence-1983-Meeting. The CIA provided contradictory advice to potential interviewees. The Agency urged that former CIA officials “give [HO] your full cooperation,” but also reminded them their “pledge of secrecy remains effective regarding Agency operations.” Interviewees were advised that they “should feel free to discuss any matter in that time period that would not reveal specific Agency activities.” See [name not declassified—Directorate of Operations Information Review Officer] to Kenneth McDonald (with attached draft Briggs to former Agency employees), January 9, 1984 and McDonald to Petersen, January 13, 1984 in CREST, CIA–RDP01–00569R000100080098–7. For a Public Affairs front office perspective on the challenges confronting HO in 1983, see Charles Stuart Kennedy interview with John McCarthy, August 28, 1996, Library of Congress, ADST Oral History, http://hdl.loc.gov/loc.mss/mfdip.2004mcc02.
  107. John Hughes to Secretary of State, January 30, 1984 attached to Alan Romberg to Kenneth Dam, July 27, 1984, Department of State, George Shultz and Charles Hill Subject Files, 1982–1988 (Lot File 89D250) (henceforth Shultz Lot File 89D250), Box 1, Miscellaneous File 6/84.
  108. Slany, “Report by the Historian of the Department of State,” July 1984, Department of State, 1984 P-Reels, P840134–2027 through 2058 (quotes from p. 2). The substance of Slany’s report was cleared by the Bureaus of Administration and Management and reported to the Deputy Secretary in July. See Romberg to Dam, July 27, 1984, Department of State, Shultz Lot File 89D250, Box 1, Miscellaneous File 6/84 and Romberg to Dam, August 13, 1984, Department of State, 1985 P-Reels, P850093–0180.
  109. Slany, “Report by the Historian of the Department of State,” July 1984, Department of State, 1984 P-Reels, P840134–2027 through 2058. The HAC declined to endorse the 30-year line in 1985 and 1986. See Warren Kuehl to Shultz, March 11, 1985 and Shultz’s response, April 20, 1985, Department of State, 1985 P-Reels, P850143-0447-0449. For the HAC’s reports, see report of 1984 HAC meeting attached to Kuehl to Shultz, March 11, 1985, Department of State, HAC Lot File 96D292, Box 4, Report-1984-Minutes and report of 1985 HAC meeting attached to Kuehl to Shultz, February 25, 1986, Department of State, HAC Lot File 96D292, Box 4, Status Report-1985.
  110. This reflected the findings of a PA survey of FRUS users conducted in September 1982, which found that 64 percent preferred “later publication of a more comprehensive record” to “earlier publication of a less comprehensive record.” See “Survey of Users of the Foreign Relations Series,” October 1983, Department of State, HAC Lot File 96D292, Box 4, Correspondence-1983-Meeting.
  111. Slany, “Report by the Historian of the Department of State,” July 1984, Department of State, 1984 P-Reels, P840134–2027 through 2058.
  112. The staff study synthesized two working groups’ March 1984 analysis of different options for the size and scope of the series, the personnel required (both within and outside the Department) to meet the various production targets, and the desirability of augmenting FRUS with special supplementary volumes. In their reports to Slany, HO historians grappled with the trade-offs required between timeliness and comprehensiveness as they defined “low,” “middle,” and “high” options for every facet of FRUS production, from access, research, selection, and annotation to clearance procedures, editorial support, and publication formats. The working group recommendations reflected HO’s recognition of the crucial importance of defining clear objectives and standards to guide the preparation of FRUS compilations and of enhancing coordination across bureaucratic lines to achieve them. When CDC received initial drafts, SR chief Hamilton explained that “[the studies] show the head of steam which Slany generated within his own boiler room and the time which HO has devoted to an essentially non-productive activity.” He advised a colleague that “they may well be worth your skimming for more illumination on the state of thinking and the character of bureaucratic activity in HO.” Sampson to Slany (with attached Patterson and Landa memorandum, March 9, 1984 and Smith and Painter memorandum, March 12, 1984), March 9, 1984 and Claussen, Mabon, Becker, Baehler, Keefer, and Sanford memorandum (with attached Sanford and Becker memorandum, March 9, 1984; Keefer memorandum; and 9 annexes), March 9, 1984 attached to Bill Hamilton to Henry Bardach, September 7, 1984, Department of State, CDC Lot File 95D113, Box 2, Staff Study 1984.
  113. Romberg through Dam to Shultz, October 10, 1984, Department of State, 985 P-Reels, P850114–0937 through 0941; FRUS Staff Study, October 1984, Department of State, CDC Lot File 95D113, Box 2, Staff Study 1984; minutes of 1984 HAC meeting, Department of State, HAC Lot File 96D292, Box 4, Report-1984-Minutes; Shultz to May (and attached summary of the FRUS Staff Study), January 8, 1985, Department of State, 1985 P-Reels, P850114–0895 through 0908 (also attached to Slany to Kuehl, January 29, 1985, Department of State, HAC Lot File 96D292, Box 4, Correspondence-1984).
  114. Robert Smalley to Shultz (with attached draft Nicholas Platt to Robert McFarlane and draft Presidential Directive), June 18, 1985, Department of State, CDC Lot File 95D113, Box 2, Presidential Directive 1985. According to William Martin to Platt, September 24, 1985, Department of State, CDC Lot File 95D113, Box 2, Presidential Directive 1985, the Department sent its proposal to the White House on June 25.
  115. Reger to Martin, September 20, 1985, Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and Museum (henceforth Reagan Library), White House Office of Records Management Subject File, PU001 33024855 and Martin to Platt, September 24, 1985, Department of State, CDC Lot File 95D113, Box 2, Presidential Directive 1985.
  116. George High to Platt, October 15, 1985, Department of State, CDC Lot File 95D113, Box 2, Presidential Directive 1985.
  117. Ronald Reagan to Secretary of State, Secretary of Defense, Secretary of the Treasury, Secretary of Commerce, Secretary of Agriculture, Director of Central Intelligence, Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs, Acting Archivist of the United States, and Public Printer, November 12, 1985, Reagan Library, White House Office of Records Management Subject File, PU001 33024855 (also located in Department of State, 1986 P-Reels, P860055–0805 through 0806). See also Robert McFarlane to Reagan, November 8, 1985, Reagan Library, Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs Chron File, 8505121. At the 1985 HAC annual meeting, Slany predicted that the as-yet unsigned directive would “probably be the most important thing that has happened to the Foreign Relations series in ten years. It will produce a more effective clearance process; it will enable the Department to take the lead in publishing the foreign affairs record; and it will provide PA/HO with improved procedures and the leverage to ensure that the process moved forward.” HAC members expressed skepticism, with Deborah Larson explaining that “the general perception in the presidential libraries was that President Reagan was not eager to release information. She could not see how the directive would have a beneficial impact if the president’s attitude was well known.” Later, Warren Kuehl confessed that “he could not understand how the Presidential Directive would accelerate the [clearance] process.” See minutes of 1985 HAC meeting, pp. 5, 10, and 21, Department of State, HAC Lot File 96D292, Box 4, Minutes 1985.