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NSArchive vs CIA

Archive Sues CIA for Speedy Review of Key Iraq Document

CIA Determines that Document Did Not Concern a Matter of Public Urgency;

Estimate described possible Iraq outcomes, reportedly “pessimistic”

Posted October 20, 2004

For more information contact:
Meredith Fuchs (202) 994-7059
Thomas Blanton (202) 994-7068

Washington, D.C., 20 October 2004 - The National Security Archive today filed suit against the Central Intelligence Agency ("CIA") seeking the expedited processing and release under the Freedom of Information Act ("FOIA") of the 2004 Iraq National Intelligence Estimate ("NIE). As the New York Times reported on September 16, 2004, the NIE spells out a dark assessment of prospects for Iraq. The estimate outlines three possibilities for Iraq through the end of 2005, with the worst case being developments that could lead to civil war.

The Archive is seeking judicial intervention to require the CIA to expedite its processing of a FOIA request for the NIE. "This is a textbook case for expedited processing," said the Archive's General Counsel, Meredith Fuchs. "There is a tremendous public interest in the situation in Iraq and the U.S. commitment to Iraq, the news media have focused significant attention on the NIE, and members of the Senate Intelligence Committee have requested that the NIE be made public to help with the formulation of policy."

The NIE was prepared by the National Intelligence Council, which reports to the Director of Central Intelligence. It was approved by the National Foreign Intelligence Board, which is the senior Intelligence Community advisory body to the Director of Central Intelligence on the substantive aspects of national intelligence. It was approved by then-Acting Director of Central Intelligence John E. McLaughlin.

Note: The following documents are in PDF format.
You will need to download and install the free Adobe Acrobat Reader to view.

National Security Archive vs. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) Complaint, October 20, 2004

Motion for Temporary Restraining Order and Preliminary Injunction, October 20, 2004

Declaration in Support of Motion, October 20, 2004

Central Intelligence Agency Motion for Summary Judgment, January 18, 2005

Central Intelligence Agency Declaration, January 18, 2005

National Security Archive Opposition to Summary Judgment and Motion for In Camera Review, February 14, 2005

Central Intelligence Agency Reply Memorandum in Further Support of Motion for Summary Judgment and in Opposition to Plaintiff's Motion for In Camera Judicial Review, March 30, 2005

Reply Memorandum in Further Support of Plaintiff's Motion for In Camera Judicial Review, May 2, 2005

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