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FAS Project on Intelligence Reform

Scope Note

What is and is not included at the FAS Mirror

The entire GulfLINK corpus provides a unique resource of the intelligence community material covering special weapons. However, focus on Gulf War Syndrome, and the overwhelming mass of material obscures much of the material of more general interest. We have used the following criteria in determining the selection of documents included in this partial mirror of GulfLINK.

Included Materials

Excluded materials

The following criteria were considered in excluding materials from this mirror:

About GulfLINK

GulfLINK is the official World-Wide Web Information Service from the Persian Gulf War Veterans' Illnesses Senior Level Oversight Panel Investigative Team in cooperation with the Defense Technical Information Center (DTIC). The information provided in GulfLINK is publicly released information. The purpose of GulfLINK is to provide the public with recently-declassified documents that may have potential relevance to the illnesses affecting Persian Gulf War Veterans.

Readers will eventually find the complete spectrum of operational traffic such as directives, plans, status reports, daily mission reports, logistics, intelligence, personnel, and on-going operations summaries in GulfLINK. GulfLINK currently contains a subset of these documents and will be updated frequently as more information is available.

Quality of the Records Collection

Most of the operational documents appearing on GulfLINK were scanned from paper copies. Where available, we have scanned the original copy. Some of those originals are torn, faded, or printed on semi-transparent paper that produces a poor quality image when scanned. In other cases only a photocopy, sometimes of poor quality, was available for scanning. In all cases DOD have reproduced the best copy readily available. Due to the use of image enhancement hardware and software most images are actually of better quality and are more readable than the original papers from which they were scanned.

DOD sent good quality typeset documents through an optical character recognition (OCR) process to create a searchable text file. The resultant text files allow researchers to search or edit the text. While some lesser quality OCR texts may appear to be gibberish, the “fuzzy logic” employed by many search engines will still identify useful words or character strings within the document. Veterans and researchers can then select the image to view the document in its original format.

GulfLINK Database Description

Readers will eventually find the complete spectrum of operational traffic such as directives, plans, status reports, daily mission reports, logistics, intelligence, personnel, and on-going operations summaries in GulfLINK.

As of 18 January 1996, GulfLINK contains over 10,000 pages of recently-declassified intelligence documents with potential relevance to the possible sources of Gulf War illnesses. In the future, GulfLINK will also contain documents from the medical and operational communities within the Department of Defense (DoD) as these documents become available. Please see the description below for more information about the intelligence collection.

By the authority of, and in accordance with the direction provided by, the Deputy Secretary of Defense, the Department of Defense has searched for, identified, and reviewed its intelligence records for declassification and public release using the following guidelines:

Intelligence related to possible causes of Persian Gulf Veterans' illnesses is defined as that information acquired by the United States intelligence agencies which may report on the storage, deployment, or use of chemical, biological, or radiological weapons during the Desert Shield and Desert Storm operations. Additionally, this information will include, but is not limited to, any reports relating to outbreaks of disease, epidemics, or other widespread illnesses, that may have resulted from infection or environmental causes (oil well fires, toxic waste, flora, fauna, etc.), among the military forces or civilian population during the two cited operations.

The records provided in these files are named according to the following convention: