The fate of the heavily redacted

In a post I did a little more than a week before the 12-15-2022 releases, I profiled several CIA docs as samples of “heavy redaction”. Now the new releases are out. How did these documents fare? Behold!

The CI staff “not me” list

The doc is self-explanatory. Here is a link to the 2018 version that I posted last time:


Here is the same doc this time around:


This time the list is released in full.

Brigade 2506 list

Here is the 2018 version:


And here is the 2022 release:


Redactions remain, but a significant amount of names and numbers were also released.

List of contracts terminating in 1977


This list still has redactions in 2022:


Notice what some of those redacted numbers are. I expect that redaction of these numbers means these people are still with us, while release of the numbers means that these folks have already passed on. I would not release this info, period. I see no sense in it. Well, whatever.

The three docs cited above were all examples of lists that had been redacted into nothingness, some of the heaviest redactions I could find. They are now restored fully, or anyway in significant numbers. In docs still redacted, restorations are numerous, and in my opinion have careful research behind them. At least I hope so.

I expressed serious doubt in my previous post that these lists could possibly contribute to our understanding of the JFK assassination. I see nothing in the releases this time around to change my mind.

Note that I put these examples up before the releases. I had no way of knowing in advance how much material would be released. Instead, I chose cases where redaction was most extreme. Other than that, these are not cherry picked examples or examples of Texas sharpshooting, where I knew where the bullet holes were and drew targets around them.

Going on to my two examples where continued redaction could be anticipated (since it makes sense):

Station X replies to ARRB request

The 2018 version is:


There were zero new releases in this document, I will not bother to give the links.

Station Y replies to ARRB request

Here is the 2018 version:


The 2022 version has only minuscule releases:


This doesn’t tell us anything new or interesting either…does it? Anyway, both of these are examples where records were put on line with no new text or only a minute amount of new text. I had no way of knowing that. Well, actually I might have had a suspicion.

Herbert Itkin

The last example in my pre-release post was a chapter from the confessions of a 1960s Felix Krull, a story worthy of a detailed accounting. Here is the heavily redacted 2018 doc:


And here is the newly dawned 2022 version:


This record too is released in full.

The two cents

Heavily redacted documents had various treatments in the releases this time. Many CIA records that started out looking like so many pieces of swiss cheese were released in full. Others were released in part, sometimes for reasons that were at least guessable. Yet others were barely touched, or released in their original redacted state. Some of these last records have been released six or seven times. Dang.

I am still not ready to pass a final verdict on the overall quality of the releases this time. True, there are records still redacted. But I have to tell you, I expected that.