Tuesday, February 21, 2006

The Memory Hole

Steady readers of this blog know that I am a big fan of George Orwell and his great dystopian novel, 1984 (for example, see here, here and here), and being such a fan I am naturally aghast at how much that Orwell predicted over half a century ago has come true -- and is continuing to come true on an almost daily basis.

Those who have read 1984 -- and you all should have by now; if not, buy a copy and read it before it disappears! -- will recall that Winston Smith worked for the Ministry of Information, in a job that required him to rewrite history almost constantly, according to the whim of the Inner Party.

When a historical "fact" changed, Winston would remove it from all of the records and drop it down something called -- in a true Orwellian naming convention -- the "Memory Hole".

And that my friends is exactly what is happening at our own National Archives.

Read the chilling story in the New York Times how the minions of the BFEE are reclassifying documents, some of which have been in the public domain for YEARS. Many of which have been published and are available in bound books issued by the US Government!

None of that matters. This review and reclassification is going on in secret, without any kind of review.

Excerpt from the Times story:

Under existing guidelines, government documents are supposed to be declassified after 25 years unless there is particular reason to keep them secret. While some of the choices made by the security reviewers at the archives are baffling, others seem guided by an old bureaucratic reflex: to cover up embarrassments, even if they occurred a half-century ago.
One reclassified document in Mr. Aid's files, for instance, gives the C.I.A.'s assessment on Oct. 12, 1950, that Chinese intervention in the Korean War was "not probable in 1950." Just two weeks later, on Oct. 27, some 300,000 Chinese troops crossed into Korea.
Read the whole story and once again prepare yourself for the frustration, the anger that will ensue.

We HAVE to stop these people! Work hard to elect a Democratic Congress this year!

2 Comments:

Granny said...

I just finished reading the article on line. I think I'll just link to your blog and get it out there.

Thanks.

Elizabeth Green said...

Thanks for the link, Farnsworth. Just another sign that this guy wants to be king. Wonder how long it will be before he goes to the libraries & starts burning all the "subversive" books. We'll link, too, if you don't mind. The more people who know this, the better.