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The corrupting influence of secrecy on national policy decisions

Government Secrecy

ISBN: 978-0-85724-389-8, eISBN: 978-0-85724-390-4

Publication date: 26 January 2011


It is genuinely accepted that the withholding of sensitive information by the federal government, be it relating to intelligence, military or foreign policy matters, will invariably serve to preclude or minimize damage to our nation's well-being. However, often overlooked is the impact that official secrecy has upon the decision-making process employed by national leaders. This overview examines the harm that official government secrecy can inflict upon our U.S. national security, through the corrupting influence it has on national policy decisions. Using the Constitutional Convention of 1787 as an apt lesson, this overview goes on to examine the impact that official secrecy had on many of the post-9/11 decisions made by U.S. national leaders.



Leonard, J.W. (2011), "The corrupting influence of secrecy on national policy decisions", Maret, S. (Ed.) Government Secrecy (Research in Social Problems and Public Policy, Vol. 19), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 421-434.



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