from the FAS Project on Government Secrecy
Volume 2002, Issue No. 4
January 10, 2002


Contrary to an explicit legal requirement, the Pentagon has still not produced an unclassified report on its Nuclear Posture Review (NPR), which defines the role of nuclear weapons in U.S. military strategy.

The Pentagon held a press briefing yesterday outlining the conclusions of the Review, and released a three-page Foreword from the otherwise classified report.

But, as noted by analyst David Isenberg and others, the FY 2001 Defense Authorization Act specifically directed that a report on the Review be submitted in December 2001 "in unclassified and classified forms as necessary." See the statutory language here:

"It's hard to have any kind of public discussion or debate about the issue until there's an unclassified version," Sen. Jeff Bingaman (D-NM) told the Albuquerque Journal last week. See "Nuke Weapons Policy Still Secret" by John Fleck from the January 5 Journal here:

The January 9 Pentagon press briefing was a welcome, if not quite satisfactory, occasion for government officials to be questioned about U.S. nuclear policy, a topic that remains largely shrouded in official secrecy. See the transcript of the briefing here:

In a briefing slide describing the Congressional mandate to conduct the Nuclear Posture Review, the Pentagon stated that a "written report" was required, but neglected to note that it was required in "unclassified form." See:

The unclassified Foreword to the classified NPR report is posted here:

Whether this Foreword, which merely presents "a summary of the highlights" of the report, satisfies the requirement for an unclassified report will ultimately be for Congress to decide after it returns on January 23.

Secretary Rumsfeld said last week that he had requested preparation of a declassified version of the NPR report, but it remained unclear whether or when that would be accomplished.


Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) introduced a bill in the House of Representatives late last year that would ban weapons in space. But while there have been many similar legislative initiatives in the past, Rep. Kucinich's bill is distinguished by its unusually expansive definition of "weapons."

Among the weapons that it would proscribe the new measure includes "psychotronic" devices that are "directed at individual persons or targeted populations for the purpose of ... mood management, or mind control."

No explanation for this peculiar proposal was immediately available. But the text of "The Space Preservation Act of 2001" (H.R. 2977), introduced on October 2, may be found here:

The Kucinich bill was hailed by Citizens Against Human Rights Abuse, one of a number of organizations of people who say they are victims of government experimentation involving electromagnetic and other psychotronic weapons. See their web site here:

The bill has been referred to three House Committees.


Secrecy News is written by Steven Aftergood and published by the Federation of American Scientists.

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