black_budget_brochure

black_budget_brochure - [the format of this document is due...

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[the format of this document is due to to the fact that the text was originally designed for a fold-out pamphlet] THE "BLACK" BUDGET A BRIEF GUIDE TO SECRET NATIONAL SECURITY SPENDING by Paul McGinnis April 1994 INTRODUCTION For many years, the United States has been spending billions of dollars in secret on military programs. The first big project was the "Manhattan" project that developed the American atomic bomb during World War II. Since then, the practice of spending vast sums in secret has been common. Congressional budget analysts estimate that 44 billion dollars will be spent in fiscal year 1994 on the so-called "black" budget. Out of the 44 billion dollars, approximately 26 billion will go to America's spy agencies. This includes well-known intelligence agencies such as the CIA and NSA, as well as new agencies such as the Central Imagery Office (CIO) and the Tactical Reconnaissance Office (TRO). The remaining 18 billion dollars will be spent on secret military programs, particularly in what is known as RDT&E (Research, Development, Test, and Evaluation) for advanced weapons. Such programs are often known as Special Access Programs (SAPs), because additional security measures above those used for Secret or Top Secret information are required. This pamphlet will show that the U.S. national security establishment doesn't want you to know how and where some of your tax dollars are spent. SO, WHAT'S THE PROBLEM? These programs are basically immune from the normal oversight
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that is required for other government spending. The actual amounts of money that are spent for each program and the purpose of each program are highly classified, primarily to keep that information hidden from the American taxpayers who have to pay the bills and to keep that information hidden from the press and members of Congress who might want to investigate these programs. One of the fundamental ideas of American democracy is that the U.S. government operates under the informed consent of American citizens, and that the U.S. government works for the American people as public servants. How can anyone say they or their elected officials gave their informed consent to the spending of billions of dollars in secret? The military likes to chant the magic phrase "national security" to hide their actions. Their argument is that such information could be invaluable to enemies of the United States. This is a ludicrous argument -- merely knowing the cost of a program and its purpose is different from having the actual technical details about the program. For example, knowing that the United States has built the B-2 Stealth bomber at a cost of approximately 1 billion dollars per plane doesn't mean that another
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