The [[Freedom of Information Act (United States)]] (FOIA) was born on July 4, 1966 when President Lyndon Johnson signed the bill into law. To celebrate, the National Security Archive has posted 50 of the year’s most important stories made possible by FOIA! I can only hope the 2nd 50 years of FOIA’s life will see the law being strengthened. Thanks FOIA and thanks National Security Archive for the work that you do!!
Today the National Security Archive celebrates the Freedom of Information Act’s upcoming 50th birthday by highlighting 50 of the year’s biggest news stories made possible by FOIA. The diverse front-page news shows how FOIA can impact human rights, government accountability, and even what you eat.
Here is a sampling of this year’s top stories:
FOIA releases to the National Security Archive provided critical evidence in the historic conviction of 14 Argentine military officers and 1 Uruguayan military officer for their participation in the Operation Condor international murder ring and were cited 150 times by the prosecution.
Documents released through FOIA proved Pentagon officials deliberately misled Congress on the Defense Department’s handling of sexual assault cases in order to undermine reform legislation.
A FOIA lawsuit uncovered that the Obama White House’s Justice Department aggressively lobbied to kill uncontroversial bipartisan FOIA reform in 2014.
Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush were, FOIA releases to the National Security Archive show, climate change heroes who took action to protect the ozone layer.
State-level FOIA releases in Michigan exposed the cost-driven decisions by Flint administrators not to add corrosion controls to the water supply, causing lead poisoning in kids, and the cover-up by the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality.
Documents released by the Food and Drug Administration under FOIA show that cheese marketed as being“100% parmesan” contained 0% parmesan – and some wood pulp.
Government audits freed by a FOIA lawsuit show widespread billing mistakes – primarily overcharging – in Medicare Advantage program.
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