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Anthony Thorne

National Archives releases some 2017 documents, withholds others

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Press release on 6 month holding period for some documents.

https://www.archives.gov/press/press-releases/nr18-05


October 2017 document releases. These aren't in ZIP form, but PDF's that are ready to read.

https://www.archives.gov/research/jfk/2017-release

 

Documents 'formerly withheld in full' begin appearing at the link below, but not consistently, and the October 2017 document releases conclude one page later. All later documents are from the July batch.

https://www.archives.gov/research/jf...elease?page=56

The documents withheld for release today seem to be nearly all of the 'formerly withheld in full' documents. There should be many, many more. Stuff like the Angleton HSCA transcript is not here.

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I asked for the bulk files and I've downloaded 20 gb of files in 11 archives. The archive is corrupt though and I cannot open it. I'm going to delete the files I downloaded and try it all again. Not sure what corrupted or if it was my end or theirs.

Anyone else do the bulk download? Were your files corrupt?

*Update*

Redownloaded all 11 files, corrupt.

Anyone else experiencing this?

Edited by Mark Stevens
add update

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I've managed to get a few of the files opened from the bulk download.

So far, every file I've opened is one released in July. From the bulk file I'm having difficulty determining what is "new."  I'll continue trying to repair the archive and if I can get the files extracted I'll put up a list of what was new in this release versus what is a duplicate release from July (if this isn't already available).

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I just listened to commentary on CNN and I swear the "new" documents being described related to documents released years ago; I wonder if they cannot tell the difference between actual new documents and redaction removal?

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3 minutes ago, Larry Hancock said:

I just listened to commentary on CNN and I swear the "new" documents being described related to documents released years ago; I wonder if they cannot tell the difference between actual new documents and redaction removal?

While I'm surely not as versed in these documents as you are, I know many of the files I viewed in the July release were previously released with redaction. I'm sure the same is true of this release. I have seen some say many documents were previously withheld in full, both on this release and the July release. I have a vast collection of documents but I couldn't begin to determine which are entirely new releases, and which are now released with no redaction unless I renamed all of my files to be consistent with the naming conventions of the NARA files. Many of mine are in this format, but most have been renamed for better categorization. 

I guess it's a good thing I "have some time off," I'll need it to wade through this crap they've released.

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Mark, I'm afraid that's exactly the type of grunt work its going to take.  We have to find out what documents that were on the list to be released actually were for one thing.  That should allow us to find the sweet spots.  Then we can at least make some sort of judgement on the nature of what is being withheld.  My understanding is that the law will require NARA to list that out at some point but its possible the WH may string this out so long that we have to do our own list.

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5 minutes ago, Larry Hancock said:

Mark, I'm afraid that's exactly the type of grunt work its going to take.  We have to find out what documents that were on the list to be released actually were for one thing.  That should allow us to find the sweet spots.  Then we can at least make some sort of judgement on the nature of what is being withheld.  My understanding is that the law will require NARA to list that out at some point but its possible the WH may string this out so long that we have to do our own list.

I was able to get the bulk files to extract and with the bulk file I also have an Excel file as a list. The bulk file had 6,702 files, but the spreadsheet has 6,685. Do you happen to know how many were released in July? After removing what I think are the July releases from the bulk file there are 5,783 files left. The files in my July release folder number 1,132, but I'm not sure if I moved any to other folders.

I'm going to start going through them tonight. I'm sure many others are as well, but if there are any particular documents, subjects, etc.. someone would like posted please let me know.

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I had understood the July release to be approximately 2,300 documents but now I'm beginning to question all the numbers I have heard up to this point. Have you checked the lists on the Mary Ferrell Foundation web site as to what the total anticipated release was supposed to be?

On MFF Rex cites the July release as 441 documents formerly withheld in full, and over 3,000 additional documents from which redactions have been lifted. Those are all posted on the MFF site now. That makes me feel better because I was thinking the summer release was around 3,400 total...

R

Edited by Larry Hancock

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Thanks Larrry,

I believe document count could be a tricky thing and I'm not sure what exactly everyone is counting as a document.

MFF states 3,751 withheld in full. 36,000 (ish) formerly redacted. The tricky part comes to defining how everyone is using "document/record." For example, the file I am currently looking at is a PDF of 142 pages, but it is one file. Of those 142 pages, there are many different records merged into the file.  Is the one file counted as a document/record or each of the 142 pages? If it's the pages, we may never truly know unless someone takes on the daunting task of cataloging how many pages are in each PDF and then comparing that. If it is the file its self, then they are well short on promised releases.

Based on the spreadsheet included, only 52 of the files released today (and not part of the July release) were previously withheld in full. Including July it is 477. This is a file count though, and each file could have multiple documents if that's how they are being counted (and I believe they are). I wouldn't expect 36,000 + files, but that many documents between the released files.

I'm going to jump straight to those formerly withheld in full which were released tonight.

* I saw your edit after I posted. That is closer to what I'm seeing in the bulk file.

Edited by Mark Stevens

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16 minutes ago, Larry Hancock said:

I had understood the July release to be approximately 2,300 documents but now I'm beginning to question all the numbers I have heard up to this point. Have you checked the lists on the Mary Ferrell Foundation web site as to what the total anticipated release was supposed to be?

On MFF Rex cites the July release as 441 documents formerly withheld in full, and over 3,000 additional documents from which redactions have been lifted. Those are all posted on the MFF site now. That makes me feel better because I was thinking the summer release was around 3,400 total...

R

Well the first withheld in full document I opened was on Harvey, just one page of testimony from Bissell. I personally had not previously seen this one, docid-32281870.

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