Posted On: July 21, 2010 by David Badertscher

The U.S. Intelligence Community and Top Secret America

More than a dozen Washington Post journalists spent two years developing Top Secret America, a multimedia presentation put together by compiling hundreds of thousands of public records of government organizations and private sector companies. From these records, the Washington Post identified a web of these organizations, both government and private, that are engaged in top secret work for the government. According to Dana Priest and Matthew M. Arkin, two Washington Post reporters who have written about the Project, these findings amount to "...a Top Secret America hidden from public view and lacking in thorough oversight."

Here are some additional links for those interested in the Washington Post Project:

Introductory Video: http://projects.washingtonpost.com/top-secret-america/

Articles by Dana Priest and William Arkn discussing the Top Secret America Project: http://projects.washingtonpost.com/top-secret-america/articles/

While the Washington Post was involved in the above project, Andrew M Borene was editing a book The U.S. Intelligence Community Law Sourcebook: A Compendium of National Security Related Laws and Policy Documents, recently published by the American Bar Association. I have not yet read this book but according to material provided by the ABA, "the Washington Post's new multimedia project on national intelligence shows just how intricate the web of agencies and laws in the United States can be, and The U.S Intelligence Community Law Sourcebook can be a great reference for making sense of it."

This book is described as a "complete guide to U.S intelligence community source material, including relevant federal statutes, intelligence authorization acts, executive orders, attorney general and the director of national intelligence guidelines, and proposed significant legislation in the U.S. intelligence community".

From information available, it certainly appears that the combination of the materials available from the Washington Post Top Secret America Project and the Compendium volume published by the ABA together comprise together provide a much needed, even essential, resource for those exploring issues related to "Top Secret America".

David Badertscher

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