New resource: Foreign Broadcast Information Service (FBIS) Daily Reports 1974-1996

Oxford now has access to the Foreign Broadcast Information Service (FBIS) Daily Reports 1974-1996. This is a JISC purchase giving UK HE and FE institutions free access until at least 2014.

The Foreign Broadcast Information Service (FBIS) Daily Report has been the United States’ principal record of political and historical open source intelligence for nearly 70 years. The original mission of the FBIS was to monitor, record, transcribe, and translate intercepted radio broadcasts from foreign governments, official news services, and clandestine broadcasts from occupied territories. FBIS Daily Reports 1974-1996 constitutes a unique archive of transcripts of foreign broadcasts and news that provides insight into the second half of the 20th century; many of these materials are firsthand reports of events as they happened.

FBIS Daily Reports 1974-1996 consist of translated broadcasts, news agency transmissions, newspapers, periodicals, and government statements from nations around the globe. These media sources were monitored in their languages of origin, translated into English, and issued by an agency of the US government. Access is to the following collections:

  • Middle East and North Africa, 1974-1987
  • Near East and South Asia, 1987-1996
  • South Asia, 1980-1987
  • Sub-Saharan Africa, 1974-1980, and Africa, 1987-1996
  • Eastern Europe, 1974-1996

The FBIS Daily Reports series:

  • provides unique perspectives on international affairs in the Middle and Near East, Africa and Eastern Europe as events unfolded from 1974-1996. Many of those events are in some ways the predecessors, if not the outright causes both near term and long term, of what is happening today in these regions today.
  • contains significant, critical material unavailable from any other source. The newspaper, short-wave, radio, and television broadcast texts in many cases exist nowhere else but in the English transcription or translation of those broadcasts which have vanished into the airways.
  • shows what the US government knew from the open source intelligence and when they knew it.
  • shows what the world thought of the U.S. and its democratic allies, “the West,” in often harsh and critical assessments.
  • offers name and subject-search ability in an instant. Many of those same searches are almost impossible or exceedingly tedious and labour intensive in hardcopy or microfiche of the Daily Reports.
  • includes not only the 42,000 Daily Reports themselves but also their Supplements and, to the extent they can be obtained, the Daily Report Annexes, which were “for official use only” and NOT part of the Federal Depository Library distribution program.

There are currently no plans to acquire the earlier FBIS reports (1941-1974).

Access is available via OxLIP+.

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