CIA still keeping Cold War budgets secret, bemoan anti-secrecy activist scholars

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If a new information security policy emerges, it's not likely to come from the Central Intelligence Agency, which still adheres to the coldest of cold war secrecy policies.

Due to CIA classification restrictions, a new State Department documentary collection on The Intelligence Community, 1950-1955 suffers from significant, basic omissions.

"Between the fiscal years ended June 30, 1947 and 1955 the total budget has increased from approximately [dollar figures not declassified]," the official history states (in document 192, the Doolittle report).

Similarly,"The number of civilian employees of the Agency under personnel ceilings has increased from [number not declassified] at June 30, 1947, to an estimated [number not declassified] for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1955."

Thus, the official government history of U.S. intelligence from 1950-1955 does not include either the budget or the size of the CIA. Instead, this half-century old information remains classified, which indicates that CIA thinks its disclosure would damage national security.

That, of course, is too silly to require refutation. All it means is that CIA's views on classification policy can safely be ignored by anyone who is not legally obliged to comply with them.

Fortunately, a good deal of the historical CIA budget information that was withheld from the State Department volume can be found in David M. Barrett's book"The CIA and Congress" (University Press of Kansas, 2005) at pages 154-156.

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