Freedom of Information Act Electronic Reading Room

Welcome to the Central Intelligence Agency's Freedom of Information Act Electronic Reading Room.

Do UFOs fascinate you? Are you a history buff who wants to learn more about the Bay of Pigs, Vietnam or the A-12 Oxcart? Have stories about spies always fascinated you? You can find information about all of these topics and more in the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Electronic Reading Room.

What is the Electronic Reading Room?

CIA Annual FOIA Reports

(Updated April 24, 2018)

The CIA FOIA Annual Report is now available in PDF, and in machine-readable XML formats.

What's New on the Electronic Reading Room?

Daily Summary Collection

Berlin Airlift Templehof Airport August 1948

Do You Know What Came Before the PDB?

You probably know that the CIA provides the President of the United States a summary of critical intelligence issues every day. But did you know that this was happening even before there was a CIA? The Central Intelligence Agency was not formally established until 1947. In January 1946, however, President Harry Truman directed the newly-formed Central Intelligence Group to provide him with a coordinated intelligence report known as the Daily Summary. This report evolved over the years and its name has changed —it’s now called the President’s Daily Brief or PDB— but the tradition begun in 1946 of informing the President with a coordinated daily report continues to this day. Once “for the President’s eyes only” (and those of his most senior advisors), these reports can now be released to the public.

See Daily Summary reports from 1946 and 1947


In 1948, growing tensions among the occupying powers of Germany led to the first major confrontation of the Cold War between the United States and the Soviet Union. The Soviets cut off all road, rail, and barge traffic into Berlin, effectively isolating the city. Although Berlin was located deep inside Soviet-controlled eastern Germany, the United States, the United Kingdom, and France controlled western portions of the city, with Soviet troops controlling the eastern sector. In response to the blockade, the United States along with its British and French occupation partners, launched what would become known as the Berlin Airlift. At the height of the campaign, a plane landed at Templehof Airport every 45 seconds. Between 24 June 1948 and 11 May 1949 (when the Soviets lifted the blockade), American and Allied pilots would deliver over 2 million tons of food and other vital supplies to the people of Berlin.

This historical release includes the Daily Summary from 2 January-31 December 1948 (4 documents/663 pages).

Highlights of this installment include the inconclusive efforts of the United Nations, the United States, and the United Kingdom to resolve the ongoing "Palestine problem," the increasingly weakened position of the Nationalist government in China, and the dominant issue of the Berlin Airlift.

This release is the fourth in a six-part monthly series. Check back in the middle of next month to see more.

Tet Declassified Vol. 1

Tet Declassified Vol. 1

President George H. W. Bush's Farewell Visit to CIA

President George H. W. Bush

With gratitude and respect

From the men and women of the Central Intelligence Agency