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President Richard Nixon and Mexico's President Gustavo Diaz Ordaz shake hands at a ceremony on the Mexico side of the Rio Bravo (also known as the Rio Grande) after dedicating the Amistad Dam, in background. September 8, 1969. © Bettmann/CORBIS

The Mexico Project

Director: Kate Doyle

Archive Launches New Web Page on Mexico's Freedom of Information Program

From the Archives

"Tlatelolco 68: Todos los documentos de Inteligencia de EU"
By Carlos Puig
Milenio (Mexico)
September 14, 1998

Previous postings

FOI in Practice: Analysis of the Mexican FOI System
Measuring the Complexity of Information Requests and Quality of Government Responses in Mexico

Official Report Released on Mexico's "Dirty War"
Government Acknowledges Responsibility for Massacres, Torture, Disappearances and Genocide

LITEMPO: The CIA's Eyes on Tlatelolco
CIA Spy Operations in Mexico

The Dead of Tlatelolco
Using the archives to exhume the past

Draft Report Documents 18 Years of "Dirty War" in Mexico
Special Prosecutor: State Responsible for Hundreds of Killings, Disappearances

After the Revolution
Lázaro Cárdenas and the Movimiento de Liberación Nacional

The Blind Man and the Elephant
Reporting on the Mexican Military

Prelude to Disaster
José López Portillo and the Crash of 1976

Dear Mr. President
Lessons on Justice from Guatemala

Rebellion in Chiapas and the Mexican Military

The Dawn of Mexico's Dirty War
Lucio Cabañas and the Party of the Poor

Mexico's Southern Front
Guatemala and the search for security

The Tlatelolco Massacre
New Declassified U.S. Documents on Mexico and the Events of 1968

"Forgetting Is Not Justice"
Mexico Bares Its Secret Past (Reprinted with permission of the World Policy Journal)

The Nixon Tapes
Secret recordings from the Nixon White House on Luis Echeverría and much much more

Before Democracy
Memories of Mexican elections

The Corpus Christi Massacre
Mexico's attack on its student movement, June 10, 1971

Reporting on Terror
Human Rights and the Dirty War in Mexico

Operation Intercept
The perils of unilateralism

Double Dealing
Mexico's foreign policy toward Cuba


New - March 9, 2010
Archival Evidence of Mexico's Human Rights Crimes
/ Evidencias en los Archivos de crímenes de Derechos Humanos en México
The Case of Aleida Gallangos / El Caso de Aleida Gallangos

August 20, 2009
Breaking the Silence
The Mexican Army and the 1997 Acteal Massacre

December 2, 2008
NPR Features Archive Analyst in Tlatelolco Massacre Program
Links to Declassified Documents from Archive FOIA Requests and Mexican Archival Research

October 2, 2008
2 DE OCTUBRE DE 1968 - Verdad Bajo Resguardo
On the 40th Anniversary of the Tlatelolco Massacre, Archivos Abiertos offers the most complete account to date of what files exist and what remains hidden bajo resguardo

September 30, 2008
Resources on Mexican Constitutional Reform on Access to Information

To commemorate International Right to Know Day and the beginning of the México Abierto Week, the National Security Archive’s Mexico Project publishes today on its Transparency Web Site new English-text resources on Mexico’s latest developments in the area of access to information, especially related to the new constitutional reform of Article 6.


About the Project

Since 1994, and intensively since 2000, the National Security Archive's Mexico Project has sought to identify and obtain the release of documents from secret government archives on United States and Mexico since 1960, and to disseminate those records through publications, conferences and the Archive's Web site. In order to obtain the declassified documents, we use the Freedom of Information Act to compel U.S. agencies such as the State Department, CIA, Pentagon, Treasury Department and Justice Department to review and release records relevant to the project.

Since 1994, the Mexico project, under the direction of Kate Doyle, has filed more than 1,600 U.S. Freedom of Information requests We carry out ongoing research in U.S. government holdings--including the National Archives, the presidential libraries, agency oral history collections, military holdings, and more--as well as search in Mexican archives such as the Acervo Histórico Diplomático of the Foreign Relations Secretariate. Since 2002, we have been able to consult a newly-released collection of Mexican documents on la guerra sucia (the "dirty war") open to the public in the Archivo General de la Nación in Mexico City.

The Archive directly sparked a national debate about freedom of information in 1998. On the 30th anniversary of the infamous Tlatelolco massacre of 1968, the Archive drew press coverage across Mexico by publishing on the Web and in several major Mexican magazines a revelatory set of declassified U.S. documents including U.S. embassy reporting on the massacre and the CIA's analysis of the Mexican security forces' responsibility. Those newsmaking Tlatelolco documents came from the Archive's partnership - beginning in July 1994- with the Mexican newsmagazine Proceso, to open U.S. files on the past three decades of U.S.-Mexican relations. Kate Doyle's column in Proceso called Archivos Abiertos (or, Open Archives) was launched in 2003. The series draws from U.S. and Mexican declassified records on a range of issues that have included, for example: drug trafficking and counternarcotics policy, Mexican presidential elections, human rights cases and state repression during Mexico's "dirty war." Archivos Abiertos was published in a monthly basis up until April 2004. The column resumed with a posting on Tlatelolco's Dead (October 1, 2006).

The Mexico Project is actively involved in the movement for freedom of information rights in Mexico--a struggle which achieved its first success with the enactment of a landmark freedom of information statute in June 2002. The new access to information law passed in 2002 represents a vital element of Mexico's democratic transition. The project also seeks to join the debate currently underway in Mexico about the country's transition to democracy--in particular, to support the work of citizens' groups promoting greater transparency, openness and accountability in government. To this end, the Archive works closely with scholars, lawyers, freedom of information activists, NGOs, human rights groups and the press to design strategies for advancing the people's right to know in Mexico. Emilene Martínez Morales coordinates our transparency programs.

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