National Intelligence Daily (NID) Reports

While doing research for another post, I took a closer look at a set of products I’d previously encountered in the CIA archive: the National Intelligence Daily report. These were (at least up until 2000) a daily digest of current intelligence.

The NID appears to have created in 1973, according to an Office of Current Intelligence (OCI) document.

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OCI document on the establishment of National Intelligence Daily

I haven’t looked into the history of the President’s Daily Briefs (PDBs) in any great detail, but the following passage of the same document is quite interesting. The audience for the NID was initially for a limited audience of National Security Council officials and select few others, with the PDB limited only to the President.

nid
The intended audience for the NID

In the above passage, important products to note there are the National Intelligence Bulletin (NIC), and the CIB, which refers to the Central Intelligence Bulletin. By May 1974, the CIB appears to have been replaced with the NIB.

In an October 1975 guide to the Intelligence Community’s products, the following distinction was made between the NID and the NIB.

 

nid-ci.jpg
National Intelligence Daily and National Intelligence Bulletin, defined (1975)

 

The NIB folds into the NID story (apologies for the acronym acrobatics), as the NIB was eventually replaced with a cabled version of the NID. This new version is sometimes referred to as the NIDC, and on the reports themselves the title for these new reports is written as “National Intelligence Daily (Cable)”.

nid-disc-nib.jpg
A 1976 document on the discontinuation of the NIB

The decision to replace the NIB with the cabled NID was done while George H.W. Bush served as the Direction of Central Intelligence. He signed the memorandum on the replacement as Chairman of the U.S. Intelligence Board. (USIB)

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Classification of the cabled NID and signature

Content-wise, a user survey from July 1976 gives some indication of the differences between the cabled NID and the ‘full’ NID.

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Comments on the content of the NID vs. the cabled NID

Having looked at the reports in the archives, one practical difference appears to be that the cabled NIDs are about 10 pages long, while the full NIDs seem to at times run over 20 pages.

Below is an embedded list of over 2,700 NIDs, pulled from the CIA archive. Each entry links to the original document entry in the archive, and they are sorted chronogically from 1974 onwards.

A couple of notes: the document titles are as presented in the archive, and many are wrong. Some claim to be National or Central Intelligence Bulletins, but I have not found a single one. All I’ve checked to date have been National Intelligence Dailies.

Also, since the original classification was TS, many are heavily redacted. I think this is true particularly for the early ones that were released as responses to FOIA requests for specific asks. The ones that were released as part of the 25-year declassification program (and are tagged CREST) seem more complete.

If you’re having trouble accessing the document, you can try accessing the spreadsheet directly here.

My intent has been to use this as a resource for intelligence education purposes, but I think the collection might also have value for historical research.

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