This goes under the category of “You learn something new everyday.”
It is safe to say that most researchers operate as a sort of combination detective/historian. They love the thrill of the hunt and don’t mind reading what would bore most other people to death. They want to know the facts about what, when, where, how, and why certain things happen. And who did it.
They seek source documents and love archives – whether the dusty boxed kind in poorly lit warehouses or the tidy electronic kind available in pdf format. Source documents and originals paperwork, necessary for sound research, is a thrill to get access to and better than ice cream.
Not having to pay for it is another.
Check out the Office of the Historian at the U.S. State Department website. This site and it’s contents were discovered while studying the FOIA law on the State Dept. website.
(Digging into this State Dept. FOIA process was necessary because one of our document requests is getting nowhere. It seems the State Dept. is having a hard time disclosing the actual Memorandum of Understanding Creating the U.S.-China Governors Forum, announced on January 19, 2011 by Sec. Clinton. This forum, sponsored by the National Governors Association and a Chinese group, is to meet in Salt Lake City, Utah on July 15-17, 2011 at the 5-star Grand American Hotel. For details on this event see the “Sleeping With the Enemy” post below.)
The Office of the Historian has lots of information, with one section called Foreign Relations of the United States, listing four administrations: the Kennedy Administration (includes pre-Kennedy documents); the Johnson Administration; and two Nixon-Ford administrations (the Nixon/Agnew/Ford years, and the Nixon/Ford/Rockefeller years.)
The Nixon-Ford eras are important because we are living with the results of having developed intimate relationships with what were the Communist bloc countries – the Soviet Union and the People’s Republic of China. It is important to understand how the U.S. developed its current interdependency with the Chinese; this means one needs to understand Henry A. Kissinger, the man present before, during and after the Nixon-Ford years and instrumental in directing policy decisions regarding both the Soviet Union and “Red China”, as it is referred to in several of these archived documents.
Kissinger really liked the communists. And still does.
Click the link to historical Documents on Foreign Relations of the United States to see the four Administrations noted above.
Click Status of the Series to see new and upcoming additions:
Foreign Relations of the United States: Status of the Series
Volumes Published in 2011 (1)
Volumes Published in 2010 (6)
- 1969–1976, Volume XIX, Part 1, Korea, 1969–1972 (May 4)
- 1969–1976, Volume VIII, Vietnam, January–October 1972 (June 24)
- 1969–1976, Volume VII, Vietnam, July 1970–January 1972 (September 8)
- 1969–1976, Volume IX, Vietnam, October 1972–January 1973 (September 16)
- 1969–1976, Volume X, Vietnam, January 1973–July 1975 (September 23)
- 1969–1976, Volume XXXII, SALT I, 1969–1972 (November 5)
This last item – SALT I – is where the U.S. began to disarm while the Soviets built up armament. Kissinger helped negotiate this treaty.
Bookmark this site – and dig in.