Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

New Declassification Process To Open 400 Million Pages of Records

timothy posted more than 4 years ago | from the what-do-you-want-to-see dept.

Government 135

linzeal writes "The newly minted National Declassification Center has been tasked by President Obama with eliminating the backlog of more than 400 million pages of classified records that are more than 25 years old by the end of 2013. The National Archives has prepared a draft prioritization plan to guide its declassification activities, and has invited public input on the plan. A public forum on the subject will be held on June 23. This may be a bonanza for the community of historians and intelligence buffs who have been left without significant source material to work with, in some cases since WWII, especially in terms of any information on cryptography, image analysis, and espionage."

cancel ×

135 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

DECLASSIFY THIS !! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32527968)

Eat my shorts slashdot !!

Stop clubbing baby seals (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32527970)

It's so adorable [youtube.com] :[

ok everyone (1)

Rallias Ubernerd (1760460) | more than 4 years ago | (#32527980)

a couple pages a person make sure we didn't become hipocrates

Re:ok everyone (2, Funny)

WrongSizeGlass (838941) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528246)

Conspiracy theorists, start your engines! There's gonna be enough red herrings and other tidbits of fodder to keep them going until the next "great document declassification dump" comes along. Enjoy!

Re:ok everyone (1)

icebike (68054) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528918)

One only hopes these make it quickly and unedited into public archives, preferably where they can be searched.

(OK, notice how I avoided mentioning Google or Bing, but realistically those are probably the only venues that could carry the load).

Historical research would probably account for the major continuing use of these documents after the Conspiracy and Cover-up crowd get done digging dirt on their pet theories.

But yes, I agree, this will engender as many questions than it answers, as casual wording from 25 year old documents will inspire entire new conspiracy claims.

UFOs, and Spies and Graft, oh My!

Re:ok everyone (1)

Surt (22457) | more than 4 years ago | (#32531576)

These are old documents. Assuming they are black and white scans or original sources in simple text based formats, you're probably looking at less than 100TB of data. Any medium sized business could build out the infrastructure to search that.

Re:ok everyone (2, Insightful)

blair1q (305137) | more than 4 years ago | (#32530120)

Conspiracy theorists, start your engines!

Quite the contrary. Conspiracy theorists, run for the hills!

You're all going to look interminably foolish when it comes out you were borked by transparently simplistic CIA misinformation campaigns.

Re:ok everyone (1)

Surt (22457) | more than 4 years ago | (#32531700)

That deserves a huge funny mod. I love the idea of the CIA being involved in a huge conspiracy theory to make conspiracy theorists look bad. And that the revelation of such a program is bad for the conspiracy theorists. Hilarious!

Re:ok everyone (4, Funny)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528626)

What's a hipocrate? A big box of short hippos?

Re:ok everyone (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 4 years ago | (#32530132)

No, it's a single doctor, and therefore very rare in urban settings.

Re:ok everyone (1)

s122604 (1018036) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528844)

I wouldn't mind being a doctor, although I'm sure I'd need to refresh myself on the latest technologies...

ya right (4, Informative)

Izabael_DaJinn (1231856) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528046)

Does anyone on /. honest believe anything seriously juicy or even particularly interesting would *ever* be released to the public. "Likelihood of Declassification – Factors include complexity of information, volume of tabs (exemptions, exclusions, referrals) and age of material. There are a number of lower level classified records which may lend themselves to quick turnaround, while other records contain classified information that must be protected under E.O. 13526 and will not result in significant public release."

This is from: "THE NATIONAL DECLASSIFICATION CENTER Releasing All We Can, Protecting What We Must National Declassification Center Prioritization Plan" mmmk

Re:ya right (2, Insightful)

Peach Rings (1782482) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528106)

The Freedom of Information Act seems to be working pretty well despite resulting in mass humiliation for countless officials.

Re:ya right (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32528494)

On that note, is there a site that posts the best examples of FOIA requests?

Re:ya right (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32530648)

The Freedom of Information Act seems to be working pretty well despite resulting in mass humiliation for countless officials.

Yeah, it worked so well getting a copy of this [collateralmurder.com] ... oh wait, it didn't. Tell me, why is information like that even allowed to be classified? If my tax dollars are paying to have Beavis and Butthead murder children in the desert, I have a right to know about it.

Re:ya right (1)

Peach Rings (1782482) | more than 4 years ago | (#32530720)

I don't know anything about that case but remember that there will always be unsatisfying answers given when something remains classified. You have to acknowledge that there are legitimate reasons to keep certain things classified. The problem is that in a case where it should stay classified they can't tell us what the good reason is, and they're forced to awkwardly say "Trust us we have a SUPER good reason" to little effect.

Re:ya right (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32530948)

You have to acknowledge that there are legitimate reasons to keep certain things classified.

That's my point. What is the reason? Everyone focused on the fact that our troops murdered a bunch of civilians and attempted to murder two children from an Apache gunship. Color me shocked. <sarcasm /> But now that it's out, NOBODY questions why that video was classified in the first place. I want the guy deciding what is and isn't classified brought up for review. What possible "SUPER good reason" resulted in this being classified? Just to cover up wrongdoing isn't a good reason to hide that video from the people who paid for that Apache.

Re:ya right (1)

Anarchduke (1551707) | more than 4 years ago | (#32531224)

If I was the guy in the gunship, I would consider "to cover up wrongdoing" a SUPER good reason.

Re:ya right (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32531646)

If I was the guy in the gunship, I would consider "to cover up wrongdoing" a SUPER good reason.

Well, if I was the child of the reporter he killed, I'd want his name to be public record. He should have to meet the children of the men he murdered. He should explain why he felt it was a good idea to kill an obviously incapacitated, unarmed man trying to crawl to safety. He should share that with all of us, but he's a despicable, gutless coward.

FOIA requests are a joke. They certainly won't be providing those kids with even that small measure of justice.

Re:ya right (1)

ultranova (717540) | more than 4 years ago | (#32533364)

The problem is, the people saying this aren't trustworthy. And the "SUPER good reason" is usually that they personally benefit from keeping it secret.

Re:ya right (1)

davester666 (731373) | more than 4 years ago | (#32532236)

Don't you mean "FOI and Adobe's PDF software....". Seriously, I find it hilarious that they keep redacting documents by drawing black boxes on top of the text like its a magic marker.

Re:ya right (1)

c0d3g33k (102699) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528130)

I believe that something interesting is likely to slip through if only through oversight or incompetence. Even that would not be a possibility if nothing were declassified and released, so I say bring it on and make the odds more favorable.

Re:ya right (2, Interesting)

linzeal (197905) | more than 4 years ago | (#32531622)

They are not releasing documents that even have one word of classified information on them, to err that far on the side of caution and refuse to attempt any redaction before releasing to the public means we are likely to be waiting till the next world war to read some of the documents from the second one.

Re:ya right (4, Insightful)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528180)

Does anyone on /. honest believe anything seriously juicy or even particularly interesting would *ever* be released to the public.

Depends on your definition of 'juicy' - this kind of information is a treasure-trove for historians. Not Nicholas Cage "National Treasure" 'historians' but the real guys who record the fundamentals of who/what/where/when/how and sometimes the why of our government operations. The motivation to over-classify is particularly strong - no one ever got sent to prison for not releasing a document. But keeping this stuff hidden has all kinds of long-term bad effects, such as an inability to learn from previous mistakes, duplication of effort and a bunch more stuff that isn't about malfeasance but is extremely important to healthy governance.

Re:ya right (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32530188)

The motivation to overclassify is not very strong. It's blatantly against the rules to use classification to hide something embarassing to the US government; The classification on almost all classified documents "leaked" recently was decided long before the embarassing event occured. And yes, people do get reprimanded and punished for applying inappropriate classificiation routinely, since the system is way too complex to be done well.

Finally!!! (1)

Motard (1553251) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528260)

We'll finally learn what was going on at Area 51 and the true origins of Marvin The Martian.

But how much is this going to cost?

Re:ya right (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32528312)

You know, people bitch and moan about more transparency in government. When government finally gets off its ass trying to be more transparent like people want, what do they do? That's right, bitch and moan even more that its not good enough.

Yes, this isn't perfect, but its a goddamn start, and never would have happened in a million years under the previous administration.

Re:ya right (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32530584)

Bullshit. Stuff is constantly being declassified, and was even during the previous administration. Of course, that's not as fashionable as STILL pointing the finger at bush for everything you don't like.

Re:ya right (1)

linzeal (197905) | more than 4 years ago | (#32531644)

Or any one before that since FDR. Seriously, that is how old some of these documents are.

Re:ya right (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528350)

Does anyone on /. honest believe anything seriously juicy or even particularly interesting would *ever* be released to the public.

It's not going to be the equivalent of The CIA's "family jewels" [slashdot.org] , but it will still be of interest to government watchdogs who are willing to sift through the data (by means manual or automated) to find contradictions, omissions and the like.

Re:ya right (2, Insightful)

Kenoli (934612) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528410)

Not being 'seriously juicy or even particularly interesting' is probably the main reason many of them need to be declassified in the first place. Guarding worthless secrets is a waste of effort.

Re:ya right (4, Interesting)

MozeeToby (1163751) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528540)

Wasn't too long ago that Project Oxcart was declassified, that was pretty juicy for me. Served as the precursor to one of the coolest, most impressive planes ever built.

Re:ya right (5, Insightful)

DerekLyons (302214) | more than 4 years ago | (#32529094)

Does anyone on /. honest believe anything seriously juicy or even particularly interesting would *ever* be released to the public.

That depends on your definition of interesting. There's lots of material that is still classified that would never make the evening news when it's released, but which would be of considerable interest to historians, economists, engineers, geeks, etc... etc...
 
Just because it doesn't cause a scandal doesn't mean it's not important or interesting.

Re:ya right (1)

jd (1658) | more than 4 years ago | (#32530148)

Tidbits are said to include the following: "Our replacement for the SHA1 algorithm shall be SKA1, which will involve strangely-dressed men wielding saxophones".

Re:ya right (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32529478)

Does anyone on /. honest believe anything seriously juicy or even particularly interesting would *ever* be released to the public.

Cool stuff gets declassified all the time. The Los Alamos Primer [wikipedia.org] was a pretty awesome read, and it was declassified in 1965 - only 20 years after the bomb was invented.

If you'd like something more recent, how about the SR-71 Blackbird Flight Manual [sr-71.org] ?

Re:ya right (1)

UnknownSoldier (67820) | more than 4 years ago | (#32529640)

> Does anyone on /. honest believe anything seriously juicy or even particularly interesting would *ever* be released to the public

Considering there are numerous levels of classification above Top Secret (i.e. Cosmic Clearance), and that the President is not even allowed access to some of them, to answer your question: Sadly, no.

Re:ya right (1)

kstatefan40 (922281) | more than 4 years ago | (#32530510)

I think you forget that the government just declassified portions of COMINT and SIGINT documents dating back to 1933. These documents were the precursor to the NSA run by the US Army Signal Corps. In the case of cryptographic information, 25 years is an awfully short period. I found many of the documents that were declassified from '33 to contain tons of extremely interesting and historically valuable information.

Do niggers get classified? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32528048)

I'm curious..

That's a lot of black Sharpies (1)

aaandre (526056) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528056)

400m pages!!! = big win for PR.

Re:That's a lot of black Sharpies (4, Funny)

Jeng (926980) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528314)

No worries, that's what they have Adobe for.

So everything about JFK & Marylin Monroe death (3, Interesting)

ymmv (1830924) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528080)

So everything about JFK & Marylin Monroe deaths ?

Re:So everything about JFK & Marylin Monroe de (1)

hguorbray (967940) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528956)

not until 2017:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_F._Kennedy_assassination#Sealing_of_assassination_records

and certain parts of the autopsy report X-rays and photos are in the National Archives under restricted access.

According to Conspiracy buffs the Bush and the Hunt family had something to do with the assassination:

http://www.tomflocco.com/fs/FbiMemoPhotoLinkBushJfk.htm

I'm just sayin'

Re:So everything about JFK & Marylin Monroe de (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32530800)

What matters is that Fidel Castro be dead PRIOR to releasing classified JFK files. Also worth noting why we still have embargo against Cuba.

This feud runs long and deep.

Re:So everything about JFK & Marylin Monroe de (0, Offtopic)

linzeal (197905) | more than 4 years ago | (#32531756)

Who wants to bet Kissinger will die laughing as he is pulled into the earth [cachefly.net] by thousands of filthy sore-ridden hands on December 31st in a whirling cloud of shrieking flaming gnats, bilious yellow smoke and obese demon farts?

Will they declassify UFO intel? (1)

by (1706743) (1706744) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528100)

If so, looks like Gary McKinnon [slashdot.org] has really, really bad timing.

Re:Will they declassify UFO intel? (1)

WrongSizeGlass (838941) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528278)

If so, looks like Gary McKinnon [slashdot.org] has really, really bad timing.

Along with some bad judgement and a seriously bad obsession with UFO's, yes.

A move in the right direction (4, Insightful)

alfredos (1694270) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528102)

Not that previous posters don't have a point, but transparency in governments has to start somewhere. Far from perfect, late, and everything else, but at least it's a start.

Re:A move in the right direction (1)

MyFirstNameIsPaul (1552283) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528252)

A P.R. move in the right direction is nothing more than a head-fake, resulting in a score for the other side.

Kill it with FIRE (4, Funny)

MrEricSir (398214) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528122)

"...eliminating the backlog of more than 400 million pages of classified records..."

Sounds like a job for FIRE!

Re:Kill it with FIRE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32528322)

That's your answer for everything...

Re:Kill it with FIRE (1)

daid303 (843777) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528332)

2 words: Orbit, Nuke.

Re:Kill it with FIRE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32528412)

yoga flame

Re:Kill it with FIRE (1)

Tinctorius (1529849) | more than 4 years ago | (#32529384)

I'm sorry to report that, ironically, mr. Fire was sacked last Thursday.

MARTIN LUTHER KING (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32528162)

Let's see the paperwork on this communist womanizer.

Re:MARTIN LUTHER KING (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32528294)

Those sort of balance each other out. While it's bad to be a commie, being a womnaizer, I kinda like the idea.

25 years? Let's go 25 months... (1)

BobMcD (601576) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528170)

Twenty-five years is a ridiculous amount of time to keep things from the people that you were elected to represent. Please someone, anyone, name me an item from 1984 that would have ended the world as we know it were it discovered prior to this year.

All the 'really juicy' things that would jeopardize anyone are either:

A) Not going to be released anyway. Not ever.
or
B) Long since irrelevant.

Looking deeper into B, this would include anything that the enemy's own intelligence efforts would have obtained long, long ago. Troop movements are secure information, for example, up until the enemy can see them himself on the battlefield. Then, not so much. The 'collateral murder' videos? Not classifiable after the kids got out of the hospital. Etc, etc, etc.

Re:25 years? Let's go 25 months... (2, Insightful)

Jeng (926980) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528370)

Could be something as nice as when we set up the Soviets natural gas pipeline to blow by providing them sabotaged parts. Something that we couldn't really fess up to at the time, but now we parade it as one of the covert successes of the cold war.

Could be something as wrong as Iran-contra.

Re:25 years? Let's go 25 months... (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32528402)

Agent A recruits Agent B recruits Agent C... Agent A retires and it is disclosed that he is an agent. Agent B had contact with Agent A and is therefore suspect and Agent C may be exposed by this. Similarly breaking Nazi encryption was kept secret because the mistakes allowing to be broken could be made with other ciphers and used to break them. 25 years is about the time after which we can assume the "bad guys" know anyway.

Re:25 years? Let's go 25 months... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32528460)

how about this

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Intercontinental_ballistic_missiles_of_the_United_States

Re:25 years? Let's go 25 months... (4, Insightful)

c++0xFF (1758032) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528584)

Twenty-five years is a ridiculous amount of time to keep things from the people that you were elected to represent. Please someone, anyone, name me an item from 1984 that would have ended the world as we know it were it discovered prior to this year.

Rockets

We certainly don't want N. Korea to have our 1984-level rocketry capability, now do we?

Atomic Weapons

1984 atomic bombs are just as deadly ... why should we give Iran a leg-up?

Spies

Do we still have spies in place from the cold war? If it a long time to get them into place, you might as well leave them there for as long as possible.

------

That said, 25 years is a long time for most things, and I believe the above have exceptions so that they wouldn't be released anyway. But maybe it's better to set a definite time period that's sufficient for most things than to make it too short.

Re:25 years? Let's go 25 months... (1)

BobMcD (601576) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528692)

See the caveat labeled 'A'.

Re:25 years? Let's go 25 months... (1)

ultranova (717540) | more than 4 years ago | (#32533456)

We certainly don't want N. Korea to have our 1984-level rocketry capability, now do we?

North Korea doesn't have the industrial capacity to manufacture your old rockets, even if they obtained full blueprints. Neither do you, for that matter.

1984 atomic bombs are just as deadly ... why should we give Iran a leg-up?

Nuclear physics aren't secret. The hard part in building nuclear weapons is obtaining sufficiently pure uranium/plutonium, not assembling it into a bomb. And even if it was, do you really think that everyone who's worked on atomic weapons through the years on both sides of Atlantic/Pacific is incorruptible?

Also, since most conflict in Middle-East seems to be initiated and driven by Israel nowadays, it could well be that Iran having the bomb would pacify the region.

Do we still have spies in place from the cold war? If it a long time to get them into place, you might as well leave them there for as long as possible.

This one might actually be a legitimate concern, if simply because any local collaborators might not be hailed as heroes as their countries, and it would be poor thanks to risk exposing them.

Re:25 years? Let's go 25 months... (1)

SeaFox (739806) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528976)

Twenty-five years is a ridiculous amount of time to keep things from the people that you were elected to represent.

Thanks to there being no term limits on Congress, there may be things in those documents about people who are still in office.

declassification means... (1)

IRoll11!s (1609859) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528284)

...removing all the juicy tidbits before releasing 400 million pages of meaningless filler.

They said I was crzy (4, Funny)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528372)

Finally, you'll all see that there *were* aliens at Roswell. "Those Air Force bases were just testing secret aircraft and spy-gear," you said. "The military cover-ups were to keep the Soviets from finding out about our secret spying programs," you said. "It's no coincidence that all those UFO sightings just happened to be around secretive military bases at the height of the Cold War," you said. "Move out of my basement," my Mom said.

Now you'll all see, and you'll finally respect me for realizing that the most obvious explanation for strange lights around Air Forces bases and secretive military coverups during the Cold War-era was that we were being visited by aliens who had traveled across the vast distances of interstellar space to shove probes up our asses.

Re:They said I was crzy (1)

Tmack (593755) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528472)

The stock price of Alcoa will skyrocket as the national reserves of tinfoil plummets...

Re:They said I was crzy (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32528790)

Maybe you should take your girlfriend(1) to Cambodia. I hear you can get a lobster dinner there for like $1.

(1) Yeah, I know this is /. but if he happens to be running a video store in New York.....

Re:They said I was crzy (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 4 years ago | (#32531166)

A holiday in Cambodia?

Ah the DKs (1)

linzeal (197905) | more than 4 years ago | (#32531782)

At least throw up a link [youtube.com] or two (live) [youtube.com] .

Re:They said I was crzy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32529916)

Hey those alien probes have become a really successful business these days. Except now they call them vibrators. You can see them in action all over the internet. Maybe the aliens knew what they were doing after all.

Re:They said I was crzy (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 4 years ago | (#32530160)

Um...2010-25 = 1985.

Roswell was declassified decades ago.

Re:They said I was crzy (1)

Anarchduke (1551707) | more than 4 years ago | (#32531244)

Well, perhaps the aliens were shoving probes up our asses. After all, alien technology gave us teh Internet, and that gave us more examples of anal probes then anything in history.

Re:They said I was crzy (1)

Chih (1284150) | more than 4 years ago | (#32532026)

I thought Al Gore gave us the internet. Have I been lied to?

National Security (4, Funny)

kaoshin (110328) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528428)

I wonder how many black magic markers that takes.

Re:National Security (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32528514)

You mean african-american magic markers.

Re:National Security (1)

Sulphur (1548251) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528622)

1) Invest in Magic Markers!
2) Poke at old conspiracy theories.
3) Profit.

Re:National Security (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 4 years ago | (#32530174)

They don't use markers any more. Too prone to bleed-through of shading allowing the words to be read anyway.

They redact with scissors now.

That's a big tiwnkie... (2, Insightful)

HaeMaker (221642) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528734)

The amount of documentation that the NDC considers of high public interest but difficult to declassify is 151,793 cubic feet of paper.

That is a cube 1/10 of a mile on each side. Accoring to a random estimate on the internet, a cubic foot of paper is approximately 9.24 reams of paper (500 sheets). So, 151,793 cubic feet of paper is about 700 million sheets.

That's a big twinkie.

Re:That's a big tiwnkie... (1)

Bert64 (520050) | more than 4 years ago | (#32529518)

Yes but paper is a relatively inefficient storage mechanism, if converted to a sensible text+images format (ie not just scanned to a bitmap dump), this wouldn't be especially large as digital data... I bet you could fit all of it on a single modern HD... Take a few copies for backup purposes and all that paper could be recycled.

Re:That's a big tiwnkie... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32532242)

no, that's a cube a bit over 53 feet on a side.
I expected better math here...

Don't feel bad (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32528878)

Don't feel bad about the long time between when the events occurred and when they become declassified. In Canada, things like invoices and reciepts from world war two are kept classified for 35 years. Operational histories of events are published after 45 years (troop movements, etc). Senior staff orders at the secret level are kept classified up to 65 years, and top secret stuff is kept for 85 years (if its kept at all). Secret length is directly proportional to how juicy the bits of tid are.

Re:Don't feel bad (1)

Bert64 (520050) | more than 4 years ago | (#32529566)

Troop movements are a pretty pointless thing to keep secret for a long time, sure it's important to keep them secret at the time the movements are taking place but once your troops have moved the enemy can simply see this for himself... Also once the war is over or the troops have moved on it's of little importance..

Re:Don't feel bad (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32530078)

Right because the shape of the terrain changes over geological time spans, and ... oh. General Patton used the troop movement strategies of Roman generals. But we don't defend out country from invasion anyway, and we don't defend our means of production from transfer to foreign ownership and physical transfer out of the country, so what's the point of even having a military, much less of protecting its secrets?

Re:Don't feel bad (1)

lul_wat (1623489) | more than 4 years ago | (#32529970)

Canada has secrets? I knew you were up to no good up there in the snow! What is it, some kind of super-moose?

Re:Don't feel bad (1)

Anarchduke (1551707) | more than 4 years ago | (#32531258)

No, Canada keeps secret its contempt of the United States. Well, secret is a strong word really.

Obama, giving our national secrets to terrorists? (3, Insightful)

s122604 (1018036) | more than 4 years ago | (#32528930)

I give fox news about a day, to come up with story that implies that this means that Obama is wreckless, hates America, etc...

surely with a headline as stupid as what I came up with

Re:Obama, giving our national secrets to terrorist (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32529174)

> Obama is wreckless
That word. I don't think it means what you think it means...

I see a new bumper sticker in the near future (1)

Message (303377) | more than 4 years ago | (#32529316)

"Classify everything, let NDC sort it out"

Copyright vs Classified (5, Insightful)

Bert64 (520050) | more than 4 years ago | (#32529402)

Isn't it wrong when copyrighted material is protected longer than classified government secrets...

Re:Copyright vs Classified (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 4 years ago | (#32530204)

Well, no.

Copyright belongs to a private citizen.

Government information belongs to you.

You don't want it kept from you, since it's yours, and you paid to create it. You want it kept from you only so long as hiding it keeps people, maybe including you, from dying at the hands of our enemies.

The private citizen who owns his own copyright material doesn't want you to have it for free, since it's his, and he paid to create it. He wants it kept from you essentially forever, or at least as long as he and his first generation of children are alive to profit from his investment and creativity.

If you want something to be yours, and you want it now, create it your own damned self, or buy the rights to it.

Re:Copyright vs Classified (1)

tsm_sf (545316) | more than 4 years ago | (#32530308)

You want it kept from you only so long as hiding it keeps people, maybe including you, from dying at the hands of our enemies.

It would be frightening indeed if the state were to somehow shift the definition of "enemy" into an intangible concept. Fortunately we're too informed and, damn it, too smart to fall for a cheap trick like that.

Re:Copyright vs Classified (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | more than 4 years ago | (#32530654)

Isn't it wrong when copyrighted material is protected longer than classified government secrets...

If that were the case, you'd have a point. But while copyright has a finite length and automatically expires, classification is forever - unless and until it is specifically released.

Re:Copyright vs Classified (2, Insightful)

grahamd0 (1129971) | more than 4 years ago | (#32531518)

...copyright has a finite length and automatically expires...

In theory. We'll see about that the next time a corporate copyright is close to expiration.

Forget the past. Start with the present (1)

Psaakyrn (838406) | more than 4 years ago | (#32530368)

Can we get the ACTA declassified?

Can handle these sentences in email... (1)

Frankenshteen (1355339) | more than 4 years ago | (#32530684)

Blog posts, even the newspaper. Is anyone else bothered by the fragment, "records are reviewed in a timely and efficiently", from a government document that took ~six months to prepare?

Old news? (1)

NetNed (955141) | more than 4 years ago | (#32531234)

Haven't we seen this all before? Didn't the same happen with Clinton? 2013, so if Obama doesn't get reelected then we get what happened the last time, the next administration blocks it from ever happening. If he does get reelected then the documents will be so blacked out that the only visible words we be less then informative or even relate-able to any context. In other words it's a red herring of red herrings.

Wake me up.... (1)

crhylove (205956) | more than 4 years ago | (#32531694)

When you can tell me definitively who shot JFK.

t-shirts (1)

Larafabian (1831318) | more than 4 years ago | (#32533374)

Great information thanks for getting this out there for people like me to read.Excellent post. I like such themes and anything connected to this matter. I definitely want to read more on that post soon. Cheap Online Whole T-shirts

unjustified priapism (1)

argStyopa (232550) | more than 4 years ago | (#32533400)

I know everyone seems to be popping wood over the treasure trove of 'secrets' expected, but honestly: the point of Obama's efforts is that far, far too much material was going into 'classified' status that just wasn't justified. As I recall it had also been a stated goal of Bush II and Clinton, to reduce the amount of overclassification going on. Futher, this isn't some sort of swath of automatically-declassified docs, I think we can all be sure that this pile has been thoroughly sorted through and culled for anything that should, in fact, be justified in remaining classified.

This would suggest to me that the tremendous bulk of material being declassified isn't worth being classified, and thus no more interesting generally than someone's grocery list.

Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?