On September 17, a ceremony was held at the Argentine Embassy, in appreciation of the work carried out by five United States government officials in the framework of the Argentina Declassification Project (2016-2019) regarding documents related to the last Argentine military dictatorship.
In an emotional ceremony, Ambassador Fernando Oris de Roa presented an official diploma, signed by Argentina´s Minister of Foreign Affairs and Worship, Jorge Faurie, to the following people: John Fitzpatrick, Senior Director for Records Access & Information Security Managament, National Security Council of the National Security Council (NSC);
Ellen J. Knight, Director for Access Management, NSC; Gregory Koch, Chief for Classification Management, Information Management Division, Office of the Director of National Intelligence; John Powers, Associate Director, Classification Management, Information Security Oversight Office, National Archives and Records Administration (former Director for Access Management, NSC); and Sara Berndt, Historian, Office of the Historian at the Department of State.
As described by Ambassador Oris de Roa: “the scope of this project and the fact that it has continued under two different US administrations (it began under Barack Obama´s Administration, and has continued and culminated under the current Administration of President Donald Trump), is undoubtedly a symbol of the strong bilateral relationship
between our two countries. Furthermore, it is the concrete outcome of thousands of hours of work undertaken by many people at different agencies.”
By honoring these five US Government officials, Argentina also recognized the work done by many others, in what has become the largest government-to-government declassification release in United States history.
• 16 agencies and departments of the US Government participated in the process (although some of them, such as the Department of Labor, did not have documents to declassify);
• The National Security Council provided the agencies a 19 page-long list with keywords to guide them in the search for documents;
• Each agency adapted the search process pursuant to their needs and specificities, and published a narrative explaining this effort;
• The last batch of declassified documents released last April is by far the largest: 40,000 pages in total, approximately 5,000 documents;
• The entire project took 30,000 hours of work, with the participation of over 100 people from different agencies;
• In total, 48,000 pages have been declassified;
• The declassified documents are available online, here: https://icontherecord.tumblr.com/tagged/argentina