NCMF GMM Recaps

NCMF 2018 General Membership Meeting & Annual Symposium

CRACK THE SKY, SHAKE THE EARTH - This was the message to North Vietnamese forces that they were "about to inaugurate the greatest battle in the history of our country."

The NCMF 20th General Membership Meeting & Annual Symposium took place on 17 October 2018 in Laurel, MD.


PROGRAM SUMMARY HIGHLIGHTS and PROGRAM AGENDA


PHOTO GALLERY - Click on images for larger view.


MINI REVIEW (Please see PDFs above for more detailed highlights of the program.)

Keynote Speaker Dr. Thomas R. Johnson, former NSA and CIA historian and author of the book American Cryptology During the Cold War 1945-1989: The Complete Declassified Official Four-Volume History of the NSA, launched the morning session with a remarkable inside look at his six-year challenge as an NSA historian to write this authoritative work on the success and failures of the NSA cryptology effort during the Cold War era. His work is written with candor and sometimes wry humor that is a refreshing departure from traditional U.S. government histories. Three volumes were declassified and released to the public by NSA beginning in 2014 in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act. Following the release of the fourth volume, the unauthorized publication of the redacted history was offered for sale in March 2017 as an illustrated, well-organized paperback with redactions moved to the margins for a fast-paced, fascinating read.

CIA Panel Discussion: A Fifty-Year Perspective. During the morning session, a distinguished panel of CIA historians provided their perspective on the CIA and the wars in Southeast Asia; CIA Chief Historian, Dr. David Robarge, also provided a comparison between the Vietnam War and today's war in Afghanistan.
CIA Panelists:
Dr. David Robarge, CIA Chief Historian
Mr. Gary Keeley, CIA Staff Historian
Mr. Randy Burkett, CIA Staff Historian
Dr. Clayton Laurie, CIA Staff Historian

NSA Panel: Center for Cryptologic History Seminar on the Tet Offensive. During the afternoon session, a distinguished panel of NSA historians and former NSA field personnel who were assigned to the NSA Watch Center in Saigon at the time of the 1968 Tet Offensive gave their firsthand accounts of the series of coordinated surprise attacks on U.S. and ARVN forces that is now considered by many to be the turning point of the Vietnam War.
NSA Panelists:
Dr. David Hatch, NSA Historian and Technical Director for the Center for Cryptologic History (CCH),
Mr. Greg Nedved, NSA CCH Historian, also presenting a short overview of the Codetappers
Mr. Thomas Fogarty, NSA Retired
Mr Jack Barrett, NSA Declassification Center Staff
Mr. Cassian (Cash) O'Rourke, NSA Declassification Center Staff

Film Clip:
Panel discussions were preceded by a 1968 film clip featuring Walter Cronkite and his proclamation to the American public that the Vietnam War was "unwinnable." This statement and his trip to Vietnam in February 1968 are viewed by many to have begun the erosion of public support for the U.S. war effort in Vietnam.

Meeting Business: The annual meeting also included updates about the Foundation, Museum, and New Museum Project - stay tuned for details.

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