NSA: The Cuban Missile Crisis @ 60 

British Ambassador First Outsider to Learn of Kennedy Decision for Blockade - British Told of U.S. Preemptive Nuclear Strike Plan if Soviets Moved Against West Berlin - Belgian Foreign Minister “Preferred U.S. to Inform NATO Allies 24 Hours in Advance”

Washington, D.C., October 21, 2022 – President John F. Kennedy made unilateral decisions to blockade Cuba and approve other military moves, but winning the support of European allies remained central to U.S. policy during the Cuban Missile Crisis, according to declassified records of briefings prepared for NATO members shortly before Kennedy announced the U.S. discovery of the Soviet missiles.

The first to learn of U.S. plans was British Ambassador David Ormsby-Gore, a close friend of the President’s. According to a declassified telegram found in the British archives, during lunch on October 21, Kennedy told Ormsby-Gore of the missiles and the two choices that he saw: a blockade or an air strike. Asked which option was best, Ormsby-Gore said a blockade, because an air strike would damage the U.S. politically. Kennedy said that was the choice he had made. He told the ambassador that his emphasis was on negotiating the missiles out of Cuba and that he did “not expect or intend that the present course of action” would lead to an invasion of Cuba.

Later that day, Kennedy alerted British Prime Minister Harold Macmillan to the discovery of the missiles and the dangers that he saw, but other NATO allies were not informed until the next day before President Kennedy’s televised speech. Kennedy and his advisers believed that sharing with allies the sensitive photographic intelligence that had informed U.S. decisions, even on short notice, would help win their support. Nevertheless, NATO allies resented the last-minute notification and even more so that they were not consulted about U.S. moves in advance. They supported U.S. actions, but some discontent lay beneath the surface.


This compilation consists of the available declassified U.S. records of the briefings given to NATO allies on October 22, 1962, the day of President Kennedy’s first public speech on the crisis. White House reports discuss the briefings of French President Charles De Gaulle, British Prime Minister Macmillan, West German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer, Canadian Prime Minister John Diefenbaker, and top NATO representatives. Many of the documents focus on the early communications with the British, the NATO ally with the closest relationship to the United States (…)

Para seguir leyendo: https://nsarchive.gwu.edu/briefing-book/nuclear-vault-cuba-cuban-missile-crisis/2022-10-21/cuban-missile-crisis-60-briefing?eType=EmailBlastContent&eId=51186c6f-f796-49fd-a1c1-d2e96d17f0fb

NSA – The Coup in Chile: What Did Nixon Know and When Did He Know it?

49 Years After Pinochet’s Putsch, Presidential and CIA Documents Remain Secret

The National Security Archive Calls for Full Disclosure of Covert History as Countdown to 50th Anniversary of Military Coup Begins

Washington D.C., September 12, 2022 – One day after the violent, U.S.-backed, coup d’état in Chile, the very first item in President Richard Nixon’s September 12, 1973, CIA intelligence report—known as the President’s Daily Brief (PDB)—was the overthrow of Salvador Allende. “Chile’s President Allende is dead and the armed forces, together with the carabineros, are working to consolidate their successful coup,” stated a short summary of principal developments around the world. On page 1 of the PDB, the CIA informed Nixon that the members of the new military junta “are all respected and experienced leaders,” indicating they were not supporters of democracy. According to the PDB, “the new rulers have declared [the Chilean] Congress to be in recess.”

But, on the actual day the military moved to overthrow Salvador Allende, September 11, 1973, what the CIA informed President Nixon remains TOP SECRET. Forty-nine years after one of the most infamous military coups in Latin American history, the intelligence report in Nixon’s 9/11/1973 PDB on Chile continues to be classified as sensitive national security information. Nixon’s PDB on September 8, 1973, which is believed to contain initial CIA and Defense Intelligence Agency reporting on specific coup preparations by the Chilean military, also remains completely redacted, almost half a century later.

As the countdown to the 50th anniversary of the coup next year begins, the National Security Archive called on the Biden administration and the CIA to fully declassify the PDBs and all remaining records related to covert operations in Chile. “Secrecy over time erodes credibility, especially regarding national security,” according to John Dinges, author of The Condor Years and a member of the Archive’s advisory board. “Continuing to hide key documents from public view after half a century,” he noted, “prevents finding a credible answer to the questions about U.S. actions in Chile.” 

Peter Kornbluh, who directs the Archive’s Chile Documentation Project said the Archive would use the Freedom of Information Act and all legal means to press for full disclosure of the controversial history of U.S. ties to the coup before the 50th anniversary. “There is still more to be learned about this dark and sordid episode of covert intervention,” Kornbluh stated, “in order to finalize the judgement of history on the U.S. role in Chile.”

Para seguir leyendo: https://nsarchive.gwu.edu/briefing-book/chile/2022-09-12/coup-chile-what-did-nixon-know-and-when-did-he-know-it?eType=EmailBlastContent&eId=67d93458-a525-4a80-ba9a-d2b5e41feb4e


La Historia de la esclavitud en Venezuela: un fondo documental excepcional 

La Historia de la esclavitud en Venezuela/ 
La Historia de los Esclavos Afrovenezolanos (1700-1858)

La Academia Nacional de la Historia y la Red Historia Venezuela ponen a disposición «La Historia de la esclavitud en Venezuela». La colección, ahora en digital, está compuesta por los tomos de la sección civil-esclavos de la Academia. Luego de un acuerdo interinstitucional entre la Academia Nacional de la Historia y la Red Historia Venezuela, con el apoyo de la Fundación Gerda Henkel, se estableció un equipo pluridisciplinario para la preservación, actualización y digitalización de 400 tomos, sobre la esclavitud en Venezuela, pertenecientes al fondo documental de la academia.

La importancia de este esfuerzo conjunto, son las posibilidades que se abren para la investigación amplia y crítica acerca de la vida de los esclavos en el país, tomando en cuenta sus dinámicas sociales y culturales. Entre las actividades que ha implementado la Red Historia Venezuela, en colaboración con la Academia Nacional de la Historia, se encuentran:

  • https://archivo.redhistoriave.org/coleccion/la-historia-de-los-esclavos-afrovenezolanos-1700-1858(…) Constitución de un equipo encargado de la transcripción de la metadata con base en el único catálogo que existe sobre este archivo: El índice sobre esclavos y esclavitud (Sección Civiles-Esclavos), de Carmen Torres Pantin (recopilación y estudio preliminar) bajo la coordinación de Marianela Ponce, Biblioteca de la Academia Nacional de la Historia / Serie Archivos y Catálogos, número 11, Caracas, 1997 (…)
  • Digitalización de tomos de la colección presentes en el catálogo de 1997.
  • Descubrimiento y digitalización de tomos no reseñados por el catálogo.
  • Creación de un sitio web y plataforma digital libre para la consulta de todos los tomos digitalizados (…)

Para seguir leyendo: https://www.anhvenezuela.org.ve/seccion-esclavos/

Para acceder a la coleccción digitalizada: https://archivo.redhistoriave.org



“There is Future if There is Truth”: Colombia’s Truth Commission Launches Final Report


In Fusagasugá, the mural “The Embrace of Truth” memorializes those killed during the conflict. (Source: Colombia Truth Commission)

Declassified U.S. Evidence Fortifies Truth Commission’s Findings and Recommendations

Briefing Book #

Edited by Michael Evans

Bogotá, 28 June 2022 – Today, Colombia’s Truth Commission wraps up three-and-a-half years of work with the launch of its report on the causes and consequences of Colombia’s conflict. The publication of the Commission’s findings and recommendations is an important step forward in guaranteeing the rights of victims and of Colombian society to know the truth about what happened, to build a foundation for coexistence among Colombians, and to ensure that such a conflict is never repeated.

The Commission for Clarification of the Truth, Coexistence and Non-Repetition (CEV) was established as a direct result of the 2016 peace accords reached between the Colombian government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), the country’s largest rebel group.

The Commission’s report makes sweeping recommendations about the role of Colombia’s security forces, denouncing the concept of the “internal enemy” and the systematic victimization of Colombia’s political left. The report also condemns decades of punitive counternarcotics programs pushed and backed by the U.S. and that the Commission says aggravated the conflict. The report is especially critical of Plan Colombia, the multibillion-dollar U.S. aid package that radically transformed the U.S. role in the conflict from one nominally limited to counternarcotics activities to one in which U.S. assistance and personnel were involved in a wide array of sensitive counterinsurgency missions. These included the protection of Colombia’s energy sector, the training and equipping of specialized military and police units, and highly sensitive operations to capture and kill leaders of insurgent, paramilitary and narcotrafficking groups.

Records consulted by the Commission illustrate how the Plan Colombia period corresponded with a general escalation in Colombia’s internal conflict, the weakening of the FARC’s position on the battlefield, the demobilization of thousands of paramilitary members, and the extradition of hundreds of alleged narcotraffickers under President Álvaro Uribe. These outcomes coincided with an escalation in human rights violations and abuses of power, including the murder by the Colombian Armed Forces of some 6,400 civilians from 2002-2008, during the height of the so-called “false positives” scandal, and the illegal surveillance of perceived political enemies by the DAS civilian intelligence service (…)

Para seguir leyendo: https://nsarchive.gwu.edu/briefing-book/colombia/2022-06-28/there-future-if-there-truth-colombias-truth-commission-launches?eType=EmailBlastContent&eId=dcccb233-01b7-4689-89f5-97bcd349f18e


Reseña: Serna, Ana María, Dolo y malicia. Regulación del lenguaje, criminalización del periodismo y libertad de expresión en México, 1901-1931 (2021)


Ana María Serna, Dolo y malicia. Regulación del lenguaje, criminalización del periodismo y libertad de expresión en México, 1901-1931, México, Tirant lo Blanch-CONACYT-Instituto Mora, 2021, Anuario de Estudios Americanos, Vol. 79 Núm. 1 (2022), https://estudiosamericanos.revistas.csic.es/index.php/estudiosamericanos/article/view/951


Varias son las expresiones de la censura en la historia política o social, de acuerdo con el contexto institucional y la naturaleza del gobierno, dicho de otra forma, del ejercicio de la democracia. Centrándose en las tres carac-terísticas mayores del fenómeno en el primer tercio del siglo XX mexicano y por lo tanto en los blancos del mismo (lenguaje, periodismo, expresión en la esfera pública), Ana María Serna revisita la historia de un oficio y de sus expresiones en la prensa del siglo XX (de la noticia al reportaje y a la entrevista) al que había dedicado ya varios trabajos de interés, especialmen-te la compilación «Se solicitan reporteros». Historia oral del periodismo mexicano en la segunda mitad del siglo XX (2015). No es baladí que abra su reflexión haciendo hincapié en la palabra escrita, refiriéndose tanto al caso de Solzhenitsyn y a la victoria in fine de la literatura sobre el auto-ritarismo, como a la experiencia contrastada de Pedro Lamicq, personaje cercano a Francisco I. Madero —primer presidente elegido democrática-mente en México— que vivió desde muy cerca el desgaste violento y las desventuras de la recién lograda libertad de expresión. El contexto es, en efecto, en ambos casos, el de las revoluciones sociales más importantes del siglo XX. En el caso mexicano, la crítica política desembocó ni más ni me-nos en la injuria convertida en adelante en «elemento esencial de la cultura pública mexicana» (…)

Para seguir leyendo: https://estudiosamericanos.revistas.csic.es/index.php/estudiosamericanos/article/view/951


Ayotzinapa Investigations

Tribute to the Ayotzinapa 43+, original digital collages by Jan Nimmo.
National Security Archives


Ayotzinapa Investigations is a special page dedicated to the work of the National Security Archive and others in documenting and seeking justice for the 43 disappeared students of the Ayotzinapa Rural Teachers College. The National Security Archive advocates for the declassification of documentary evidence in fighting impunity amidst the unprecedented crisis of forced disappearances in Mexico. 

On the night of September 26 and in the early morning of September 27, 2014, a group of students was attacked by local police in the town of Iguala, Guerrero. The night left six people dead, dozens injured, and 43 students forcibly disappeared. The violence committed against the unarmed young men by the police in collusion with the drug cartel Guerreros Unidos sparked mass protests throughout the country. 

Then-President Enrique Peña Nieto opened an investigation that would prove deeply inadequate and ultimately fraudulent. Domestic and international criticism over the official investigation led the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights to sponsor a group of independent, international experts (GIEI) who arrived in Mexico in March of 2015 to work on the case. The GIEI’s efforts throughout 2015 and 2016 revealed the Mexican government’s falsification of records, destruction of evidence, and systematic use of torture against detainees and suspects throughout the official investigation (…)

Para seguir leyendo: https://nsarchive.gwu.edu/special-exhibit/ayotzinapa-investigations?eType=EmailBlastContent&eId=7f0ce6d9-9849-4210-854e-6e578c2a623f



La historia de Colombia en línea: Versiones del Bogotazo

Versiones del Bogotazo, Bogotá, Idartes, 2018 



Arturo Álape (Seudónimo), 1938-2006
Braun, Herbert, 1948-
Caballero Calderón, Lucas, 1913-1981
González Uribe, Guillermo
Diusabá Rojas, Víctor
Alvarado, María Cristina

El asesinato de Jorge Eliécer Gaitán, ocurrido al mediodía del 9 de abril de 1948, es sin duda el magnicidio que transtornó de manera más dramática el curso de la historia colombiana. Fue una muerte que se multiplicó en trescientas mil muertes y causó el desplazamiento forzoso de más de dos millones de personas, una quinta parte de la población, que por ese entonces se calculaba en once millones de habitantes; además produjo la destrucción de buena parte de la capital. Tan arrasadora fue la reacción, tan acendrado fue el odio que se apoderó del país, que se conoce en los libros de historia con el nombre absoluto de La Violencia.

Un libro disponible en la colección digital del Banco de la República (en línea y versión PDF)



“After Ayotzinapa” Podcast Investigates Horrific Mexican Atrocity

Original digital collage by Jan Nimmo, Yo, Jan Nimmo, Glasgow, Escocia, quiero saber dónde está Benjamín Ascencio Bautista

New Podcast Explores the Pursuit of Justice for 43 Disappeared StudentsNational Security Archive partners with Reveal News to investigate 2014 mass disappearance in Mexico – and the ongoing struggle for truth and accountability in the Ayotzinapa tragedy Mexican prosecutor fights to break the “pact of silence” that prolonged cover-up of the atrocity Ayotzinapa students became collateral damage in Mexican drug wars

Washington, D.C., January 10, 2022—On Saturday, January 15, a new podcast exploring the shocking case of 43 Mexican students disappeared by security forces in 2014 will launch on radio stations around the United States and on podcast platforms. The three-part serial is the result of a two-year collaboration between the National Security Archive and Reveal News from the Center for Investigative Reporting.

Although the stark facts of the Ayotzinapa case are known worldwide, the podcast features interviews, insights, and investigative findings that have never before been heard. They include:

  • Testimonies recorded weeks after the attacks with Ayotzinapa students who survived.
  • Eye-witness accounts of how the government of President Enrique Peña Nieto sabotaged its own investigation and, for years, deliberately obstructed justice.
  • Extensive interviews and audio-diaries from Omar Gómez Trejo, the special prosecutor who took office in 2019 and has been tasked with solving the case, locating the missing students, and investigating his predecessors as he and his team uncover proof of a massive cover-up.
  • A revealing interview with a retired DEA officer who supervised a year-long investigation into a Mexican drug trafficking ring in Chicago – and was the first to make the connection between his case and the students’ disappearance.
  • Never-before heard testimony from a former suspect in the Ayotzinapa case who was tortured by the military and police, forced to sign a false confession, imprisoned for five years without trial, and freed only after a videotape of his torture appeared anonymously on YouTube.
  • The story of one mother, two daughters, and their relentless search for their beloved son and brother, Benjamín Ascencio Bautista.


On September 26, 2014, police attacked a group of college students as they rode on buses through the town of Iguala in southwestern Mexico; they blocked the buses from moving forward, then they opened fire. For hours, federal security forces and soldiers from a nearby base circulated in and around the chaotic scenes of violence, but never stopped to intervene. The long, harrowing night left six people dead. The police detained 43 of the students and piled them into the backs of their trucks. The young men were never seen again (…)

Para seguir leyendo: https://nsarchive.gwu.edu/news/mexico/2022-01-10/after-ayotzinapa-podcast-investigates-horrific-mexican-atrocity

#Chile – Columna de Manuel Gárate: ¿Un salto al vacío?


Por Manuel Gárate, Instituto de Historia Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile. Investigador COES

Los ánimos están crispados y en no pocas familias el debate se ha transformado en amargas disputas y en más de algún portazo. Todo ello con ocasión de la segunda vuelta de este domingo. Los candidatos José Antonio Kast y Gabriel Boric representan posiciones aparentemente irreconciliables sobre el diagnóstico de la sociedad chilena y su futuro inmediato. Ninguno de los dos aparecía como favorito hasta hace pocos meses, y tampoco imaginaron encontrarse en una posición tan expectante tras un largo periodo de pandemia global y a casi dos años del estallido social. Para quien resulte vencedor, se vienen tiempos difíciles y tendrá que sentarse a negociar con los adversarios los cambios que el país reclama hace años. Si hay algo que resulta evidente es que la explosión social del 2019 no tiene signo político, pero sí una exigencia por una sociedad más justa e inclusiva.

Las comparaciones y analogías con momentos anteriores de la historia reciente del país surgen de manera espontánea y según la generación que los evoque. Para algunos, esta segunda vuelta rememora aquella de enero de 2000 entre Lagos y Lavín, que pocos recuerdan estuvo marcada por la detención de Augusto Pinochet en Londres, y la extrema polarización que generó en el país desde su arresto en octubre de 1998. Todo ello en medio de las repercusiones económicas de la crisis asiática del 97-98. Se hablaba del primer socialista que llegaba a La Moneda después de Allende y del nivel de incertidumbre y temor que generaba en los mercados. Nadie imaginaba que pocos años después sería ovacionado por los empresarios en un contexto del súper ciclo del cobre.

El plebiscito de 1988 también aparece como un momento comparable, sobre todo por el nivel de polarización política y la lógica del todo o nada que se instaló en aquellos días. Se dijo que si ganaba la opción NO el país viviría en el caos y se volvería ingobernable. Apenas un año y medio después, los mismos fantasmas resurgieron con ocasión de la elección presidencial que enfrentó a Aylwin y Büchi. Recuerdo claramente cómo también se hablaba de un candidato apoyado por extrema izquierda y cuyo programa económico estaba destinado al fracaso. Parecía otro salto al vacío que la sociedad chilena estaba dando. Finalmente, nada de aquello ocurrió y los chilenos y chilenas eligieron el diálogo y las reformas para salir del atolladero. Hubo promesas que se postergaron, quizás por demasiado tiempo, pero también el país necesitaba paz tras casi 20 años de enfrentamientos y dictadura.

Ahora cuando nuevamente nos enfrentamos a lo desconocido y a los discursos tremendistas, la metáfora del “salto al vacío” vuelve a aparecer. Sin embargo, si alguna lección nos puede dejar la historia reciente es que el pueblo chileno no teme a lo nuevo si aquello se le presenta como un horizonte posible de cambios y equidad. Ni fiebre revolucionaria ni orden a cualquier precio.


Declassified Documents Key to Judgement Against Colombian Paramilitary

Court finds paramilitaries had “symbiotic relationship with Colombian state actors” – Briefing Book #778

Washington, D.C., October 4, 2021 – Declassified State Department and Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) reports that “acknowledge the long-standing relationship between [Colombian] state security forces and the paramilitaries” are among the key evidence behind a historic $12-million judgement against a former Colombian paramilitary leader last week in U.S. federal court in Miami.

Federal Magistrate Judge Edwin Torres found that Carlos Mario Jiménez, the former paramilitary leader known as “Macaco,” was responsible for the murder of Colombian community leader Eduardo Estrada in 2001. The case was developed by the Center for Justice and Accountability (CJA) and the Colombian Commission of Jurists (CCJ) on behalf of victims in Colombia. More than eleven years in the making, the plaintiffs filed the initial complaint on June 15, 2010.

Colombian President Álvaro Uribe extradited Jiménez to the U.S. in 2008, where he was convicted and served 11 years of a 33-year sentence for drug trafficking. His extradition and the subsequent U.S. decision to focus solely on narcotrafficking charges, prevented thousands of victims of Macaco’s paramilitary group, the Bloque Central Bolivar (BCB), from seeking justice for assassinations, massacres, and other acts of violence. In 2019 Jiménez was released and repatriated to Colombia where he was immediately arrested on homicide and conspiracy charges (…)

Para seguir leyendo: https://nsarchive.gwu.edu/briefing-book/colombia/2021-10-04/declassified-documents-key-judgement-against-colombian?eType=EmailBlastContent&eId=1bd466c6-a351-4c8e-a06b-b2a17b350632

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