Documents Reclassified: Grey Lady Has Tizzy

First, the story:

In a seven-year-old secret program at the National Archives, intelligence agencies have been removing from public access thousands of historical documents that were available for years, including some already published by the State Department and others photocopied years ago by private historians.

The restoration of classified status to more than 55,000 previously declassified pages began in 1999, when the Central Intelligence Agency and five other agencies objected to what they saw as a hasty release of sensitive information after a 1995 declassification order signed by President Bill Clinton. It accelerated after the Bush administration took office and especially after the 2001 terrorist attacks, according to archives records.

But because the reclassification program is itself shrouded in secrecy — governed by a still-classified memorandum that prohibits the National Archives even from saying which agencies are involved — it continued virtually without outside notice until December. That was when an intelligence historian, Matthew M. Aid, noticed that dozens of documents he had copied years ago had been withdrawn from the archives’ open shelves.

This is just an attempt by the New York Times, who bury the reality that documents that should not have been declassified were declassified, to paint the Bush Admin in a negative light. Doesn’t matter that the program started in 1999 (who was President then?). Doesn’t matter that Pres. Bush probably was told about it briefly once or twice (maybe. Heck, this might be the first time he has heard about it.) But, you know that, in the mind of a Dem, it is all Bush’s fault.

I feel for the historians, but, if the folks in charge of reclassifying go a little to far, better then not going far enough.

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