History Commons Groups

August 29, 2010

Poll Question: Please Vote

Filed under: community,History Commons 2.0 — Max @ 10:42 pm

This is the first in a series of polls designed to find out more about how you perceive the History Commons, and how it can do a better job for you.

In Web development speak, a “walled garden” is a site or online tool that is inaccessible — you can’t do much with it besides read the content. It’s tough, sometimes impossible, to interact with others on the site, whether it be other users or the site administrators.

That’s what this poll asks you about. Please vote, and please share this with others who might use, or be interested in using, the History Commons. And please comment on your vote in the comments!

(This poll is replicated on our sister blog.)

August 28, 2010

FOIA Update: Tenet Memo Found

Filed under: Complete 911 Timeline,Document Collection — kevinfenton @ 11:47 am
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The CIA has got back to me about the Tenet ‘We Are at War’ memo with amazing speed. I had filed an FOIA request for the memo a few weeks ago. Instead of saying they couldn’t find it, wanted me to pay thousands of dollars to look and then probably wouldn’t give it to me anyway, they’re telling me they have found it (somebody else has already asked), they only want 10 cents a page for copying (I thought you were supposed to get some pages free?) and won’t give it to me anyway (and won’t definitely tell me they won’t give it to me anyway for a very long, but indeterminate period of time). This is real progress!

Anyway, this is the actual text of the CIA’s reply:

We are currently processing a request for the same records from another requester. Once our research and review of that request is completed, we will forward to you the same CIA-originated records, if released. We will charge you ten cents per page for copies of the relased material. We have a substantial backlog, which we are working diligently to reduce, so we are unable to estimate when we will complete our review. However, we will notify you once the processing of the original request is complete.

August 24, 2010

New FOIA Request: Report from Internal FBI Investigation

Filed under: Complete 911 Timeline,Document Collection — kevinfenton @ 2:02 am

I have filed a new FOIA request, this time for a report from an internal FBI investigation into the pre-9/11 intelligence failures. The existence of the report, which is different to the Justice Department inspector general’s report, was first revealed in the 2008 Jeff Stein article “FBI Prevents Agents from Telling ‘Truth’ About 9/11 on PBS.” It was from this article that we learned what Doug Miller and Mark Rossini really knew about the blocking of Miller’s draft cable from Alec Station to the FBI about Pentagon hijacker Khalid Almihdhar’s US visa. So, hopefully, it would be pretty useful if it ever gets released in unredacted form.

A list of successful FOIA requests can be found here and unsuccessful ones here.

August 22, 2010

Open Thread

Filed under: community,open thread — Max @ 10:28 pm
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Have at it.

August 18, 2010

New FOIA Request: “We Are at War” Memo

Filed under: Complete 911 Timeline,Document Collection — kevinfenton @ 8:57 am
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I have filed a new FOIA request, this time for a CIA memo drafted by former agency Director George Tenet on December 4, 1998 in the follow-up to the East African Embassy Bombings. It was entitled “Usama bin Laden” and concerns CIA operations against al-Qaeda. It was sent to several leading CIA officials and his deputy for intelligence community management. Apparently on page 2, it states: “We are at war. I want no resources or people spared in this effort, either inside the CIA or the Community.” The directive has been mentioned repeatedly in numerous accounts, including the 9/11 Commission’s report and Tenet’s own book, At the Center of the Storm.

A list of successful FOIA requests can be found here and unsuccessful ones here.

August 6, 2010

Open Thread

Filed under: community,open thread — Max @ 10:28 am
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