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Improving the Presumptive Disability Decision-Making Process for Veterans
tion. 2007. 18 U.S.C. § 793; Gathering, or Delivering Defense Information to Aid Foreign Government. 2007. 18 U.S.C. § 794), and further legislation providing for military secrets was enacted in 1938 (Photographing and Sketching Defense Installations. 2007. 18 U.S.C. § 795; Use of Aircraft for Photographing Defense Installations. 2007. 18 U.S.C. § 796; Publication and Sale of Photographs of Defense. 2007. 18 U.S.C. § 797; Quist, 2002). In 1940 President Franklin D. Roosevelt issued the first executive order on classification, which was based on the authorization of the 1938 law enacted to protect military installations and equipment (Truman, 1950). The regulations that interpreted the World War I law declared that secrets could be kept not only for national security reasons but also for other reasons. In 1936, for example, the Army issued rules that provided for Secret, Confidential, and Restricted information. The definition of Confidential provided that
A document will be classified and marked “Confidential” when the information it contains is of such nature that its disclosure, although notendangering our national security, might be prejudicial to the interests or prestige of the Nation, an individual, or any governmental activity, or be of advantage to a foreign nation. (Classification, 1936; emphasis added)
Similarly, data could be classified Secret if release “might endanger the national security or cause serious injury to the interests or prestige of the Nation, an individual, or any government activity”(Classification, 1936).
The use of classification and secrecy by the government is detailed exquisitely by the history of the formation of the Atomic Energy Commission and the development of the atomic bomb during World War II. The Advisory Committee on Human Radiation Experiments (ACHRE) Report (ACHRE, 1995) provides an extremely detailed chronology of the development of the classification scheme and the use of secrecy by the government as it relates to any aspect of radiation work. The history of use of the secrecy classification for radiation studies is outlined in Appendix L-1.
Especially during times of national crisis the general public and the government take security seriously. The concern about national security has evolved considerably over the evolutionary period of classification. During World War II and the development of the atomic bomb under the Manhattan Project, considerable emphasis was placed on wartime secrecy. Secrecy and the oath of secrecy were extended not only to the actual participating scientists and staff but to families of these individuals. Appendix L-1 provides an overview of the secrecy concerns surrounding these projects. During this developmental time period, considerable emphasis was placed on secrecy surrounding the use of human volunteers, and that empha-