Late last year, the Central Intelligence Agency explained to Judge Kessler of the US District Court in Washington DC that
releasing the final volume of its three-decade-old history of the 1961
Bay of Pigs debacle would “confuse the public,” and should be withheld
because it is a “predecisional” document. Wow. And I thought that I
had heard them all.
On the 50th anniversary of the Bay of Pigs invasion, the National Security Archive filed a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit for the release of a five-volume CIA history of the Bay of Pigs
affair. In response to the lawsuit, the CIA negotiated to release three
volumes of the history — the JFK Assassination Records Review Board had
already released Volume III– with limited redaction, currently available on the National Security Archive’s website. At the time, the Director
of the National Security Archive’s Cuba Documentation project, Peter
Kornbluh, quipped that getting historic documents released from the CIA was “the
bureaucratic equivalent of passing a kidney stone.” He was right. The
Agency refused to release the final volume of this history, and the
National Security Archive is not giving up on the fight.