Friday, August 26, 2005

Freedom Of Information

The National Security Archive combines a unique range of functions in one non governmental, non-profit institution. The Archive is simultaneously a research institute on international affairs, a library and archive of declassified U.S. documents obtained through the Freedom of Information Act, a public interest law firm defending and expanding public access to government information through the FOIA, and an indexer and publisher of the documents in books, microfiche, and electronic formats. The National Security Archive was founded in 1985 by a group of journalists and scholars who had obtained documentation from the U.S. government under the Freedom of Information Act and sought a centralized repository for these materials. Over the past decade, the Archive has become the world's largest non governmental library of declassified documents. The Archive is designed to apply the latest in computerized indexing technology to the massive amount of material already released by the U.S. government on international affairs, make them accessible to researchers and the public, and go beyond that base to build comprehensive collections of documents on specific topics of greatest interest to scholars and the public. The Archive's holdings include more than two million pages of accessioned material in over 200 separate collections. The Archive's computer system hosts major databases of released documents (over 100,000 records), authority files of individuals and organizations in international affairs (over 30,000 records), and FOIA requests filed by Archive staff and outside requesters on international affairs (over 20,000 records).


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