Mikey Weinstein Communication (OSD)

Jason Smathers filed this request with the Department of Defense, Office of the Secretary of Defense of the United States of America.
Tracking # 16-021488; J-16-0092; 13-F-0785
Status
Completed

Communications

From: Jason Smathers

To Whom It May Concern:

This is a request under the Freedom of Information Act. I hereby request the following records:

A copy of all communication to or from Mikey Weinstein.

I also request that, if appropriate, fees be waived as I believe this request is in the public interest. The requested documents will be made available to the general public free of charge as part of the public information service at MuckRock.com, processed by a representative of the news media/press and is made in the process of news gathering and not for commercial usage.

In the event that fees cannot be waived, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 20 business days, as the statute requires.

Sincerely,

Jason Smathers

From: Aldorfer, Susan CIV WHS-ESD

Dear Mr. Smathers,

This is in response to your Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request, as stated below.

As you may or may not know, there is no central FOIA processing point for the entire Department of Defense (DoD). Within DoD, each of the Military Services and the various DoD components are responsible for processing requests for records related to their own organization. This office, for example, only processes FOIA requests for records related to the Office of Secretary of Defense and the Joint Staff (OSD/JS). You have not provided enough information to determine a connection between the records you seek and the OSD/JS. Thus, your request is not reasonably described to support processing by this office.

You did not identify who Mr. Weinstein is and how the requested information is related to the OSD/JS. It is the requester’s responsibility to reasonably describe the records sought. The FOIA does not require agencies to conduct research, answer questions, draw conclusions, or otherwise render subjective evaluations in order to respond to a request. The FOIA only requires agencies to provide specifically identified records, subject to itemized exemptions, which contain information responsive to a request. Generally, a record is not reasonably described unless the description contains sufficient information to permit an organized nonrandom search based on filing arrangements and existing retrieval systems, or unless the request contains sufficient information to permit inference of the elements needed to conduct a search. Descriptive information may be provided in these ways: 1) file-related information such as the type of record sought, the title, index citation, subject area, date the record was created, and the originator of the record; and/or 2) event-related information such as the circumstances that resulted in the record being created and/or the date and circumstances surrounding the event that the record covers. (See: Paragraph C1.5.8, DoD 5400.7-R, available at http://www.dtic.mil/whs/directives/corres/pdf/540007r.pdf).

This action closes your request in this office.

Respectfully,

From: Jason Smathers

I appeal the closure of my FOIA request without taking any action to search for records. I reasonably described the records I was seeking as correspondence to or from one specific individual.

This request was sent to the office of the secretary of defense on purpose, not as a central FOIA processing unit for the DoD, but because I want records created or held by the office of the secretary of defense.

I'm happy to google ( http://lmgtfy.com/?q=Mikey+Weinstein&l=1 ) a quick biography of Mr. Weinstein for you:
"Michael L. "Mikey" Weinstein is an attorney, businessman, and former Air Force officer. He is the founder and president of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation, (MRFF) and author of With God on Our Side: One Man's War Against an Evangelical Coup in America's Military and No Snowflake in an Avalanche, both of which describe his fight against alleged coercive Christian Fundamentalist practices by some members of the military." -Wikipedia

I do not expect you to "conduct research, answer questions, draw conclusions, or otherwise render subjective evaluations in order to respond to a request." Rather, I am requesting that you search incoming and outgoing communication for correspondence to or from one specific person.

I am willing to further limit my search to records created between 1/20/2009 and the date this request is processed.

Although I am requesting all communication to or from Mr. Weinstein, I anticipate the subject matter of such correspondence to be related to the mission of Military Religious Freedom Foundation, (MRFF) which can be read here: http://www.militaryreligiousfreedom.org/about/our-mission/ or his personal "fight against alleged coercive Christian Fundamentalist practices by some members of the military" as stated in his Wikipedia biography.

Please process my request.

From: Nichelson, Donald CIV WHS-ESD

Dear Requester:

This is an interim response to your Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request, dated May 6, 2013, which was received in this office on the same day it was submitted. Your request has been assigned case number 13-F-0785, and we ask that you use that number when referring to your request. A copy of your request is provided to you for your information.

We will be unable to respond to your request within the FOIA's 20 day statutory time period as there are unusual circumstances which impact on our ability to quickly process your request. These unusual circumstances are: (a) the need to search for and collect records from a facility geographically separated from this Office; (b) the potential volume of records responsive to your request; and (c) the need for consultation with one or more other agencies or DoD components having a substantial interest in either the determination or the subject matter of the records. For these reasons, your request has been placed in our complex processing queue and will be worked in the order the request was received. Our current administrative workload is 1,099 open requests.

If you would like to discuss how to limit your request in order to speed the processing time, we would be pleased to discuss how you might modify your request. The action officer assigned to your request is Donald Nichelson at (571) 372-0425. The toll free number for this Office is 866-574-4970. You may not be aware that we maintain a website and electronic reading room at: http://www.dod.mil/pubs/foi.

Respectfully,

From: Walukonis, Joseph E CIV USARMY HQDA RMDA (US)

Dear Mr. Smathers,

Please see the attached PDF for the status of your FOIA request.

V/R

Joseph E. Walukonis

FOIA Analyst

U.S. Army Records Management and Declassification Agency

Freedom of Information and Privacy Division

703-428-6504
CLASSIFICATION: UNCLASSIFIED

From: MuckRock

To Whom It May Concern:

Could you please clarify whether the previously assigned tracking number (13-F-0785) is no longer applicable and whether the newly-mentioned one (16-1198) should be used instead?

Thank you.

From: MuckRock

To Whom It May Concern:

The attached FOIA request has been forwarded to your office for processing. Confirmation of receipt and an estimated date of completion would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you.

From: Walukonis, Joseph E CIV USARMY HQDA RMDA (US)

Mr. Smathers,

Both tracking numbers are still applicable. 16-1198 is the number assigned by the Army and 13-F-0785
by OSD/JS.

v/r

Joe Walukonis
FOIA Analyst
RMDA
(703) 428-6504

From: FOIA/PA

CLASSIFICATION: UNCLASSIFIED

Mr. Smathers,

See attached file concerning FOIA Case FP-16-021488/FA-16-0052.

Estimated completion date: July 5, 2016

Regards,

Joanne Nocton
Management Assistant
Freedom Of Information Act/Privacy Act Office
DHR-Administrative Service Branch
USAG West Point
646 Swift Road
West Point, NY 10996
(845) 938-7311
foia/pa@usma.edu

NOTICE: Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)/Privacy Act (PA)/Procurement
Integrity Act Confidentiality Notice-For Official Use Only. This
transmission and/or the documents accompanying it may contain sensitive
information subject to the FOIA/Privacy/Procurement Integrity Acts. Unless
you are the intended recipient, or authorized to receive for the intended
recipient, you may not read, print, retain, use, copy, distribute or
disclose to anyone the message or any information contained in the message
as it is prohibited by Federal Law. If you have received this transmission
in error, please notify the sender immediately, and destroy all copies of
the original message (including any attachments).

CLASSIFICATION: UNCLASSIFIED

From: NG NCR NGB ARNG Mailbox NGB FOIA

Mr. Jason Smathers
MuckRockNews
DEPT MR 5183
PO BOX 55819
Boston, MA 02205-5819
requests@muckrock.com

Dear Mr. Smathers:

This letter is in response to your Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request dated May 6, 2013 to the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) Joint Staff (JS) FOIA Requestor Service Center (RSC) seeking all records from January 20, 2009 of communication to or from Mr. Weinstein. The OSD JS (their case #13-F-0785) located and referred 3 pages of records that fell under the purview of the National Guard Bureau (NGB). The referral was received on June 16, 2016 and assigned FOIA #J-16-0092.

Upon review of the records, I have determined the records are releasable in their entirety. Attached are the 3 pages responsive to your request as referred to our office by the OSD JS FOIA RSC. This concludes the processing of this request. If you have any questions regarding this request, please contact my office at (844) 573-2939 or by e-mail: NGB.FOIA@mail.mil.

Sincerely,

// SIGNED //

Jennifer Nikolaisen
Chief, Office of Information and Privacy
Chief FOIA/Privacy Officer
National Guard Bureau

From: FOIA/PA

CLASSIFICATION: UNCLASSIFIED

Mr. Smathers,

Please see attached the final action concerning your FOIA Case
FP-16-021488/FA-16-0052.

Regards,

Joanne Nocton
Management Assistant
Freedom Of Information Act/Privacy Act Office
DHR-Administrative Service Branch
USAG West Point
646 Swift Road
West Point, NY 10996
(845) 938-7311
foia/pa@usma.edu

NOTICE: Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)/Privacy Act (PA)/Procurement
Integrity Act Confidentiality Notice-For Official Use Only. This
transmission and/or the documents accompanying it may contain sensitive
information subject to the FOIA/Privacy/Procurement Integrity Acts. Unless
you are the intended recipient, or authorized to receive for the intended
recipient, you may not read, print, retain, use, copy, distribute or
disclose to anyone the message or any information contained in the message
as it is prohibited by Federal Law. If you have received this transmission
in error, please notify the sender immediately, and destroy all copies of
the original message (including any attachments).

CLASSIFICATION: UNCLASSIFIED

From: Farrell, Megan B CIV WHS ESD (US)

Good morning Mr. Smathers,

Attached is our final response to your FOIA request no. 13-F-0785. Should you have any questions, please don't hesitate to reach out to me.

Please confirm receipt of this email.

Thank you,
Megan

Megan Farrell
OSD/JS FOIA Analyst
(571) 372-0409

From: Sandoval, Jose

Email to acknowledge receipt of your FOIA request.

From: USARMY Ft Belvoir HQDA OAA-RPA Mailbox FOIA

Mr. Smathers
Good morning, attached is the US Army Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) final response pertaining to your request.

V/r,

Army FOIA
Office of the Administrative Assistant to the Secretary of the Army/
Records Management and Declassification Agency

From: Broady, Tracy A CIV USAF SAF-AA (US)

Good Day Mr. Smathers,

Please find attached the response to the above mentioned FOIA request.

V/r,
Tracy

Ms. Tracy A. Broady
Government Information Specialist
SAF FOIA

Email: Tracy.A.Broady.Civ@mail.mil
Workflow: usaf.pentagon.saf-aa.mbx.haf-foia-workflow@mail.mil

Office: 703-692-9979
DSN: 222-9979

FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY. The information transmitted is intended only for the
person or entity to which it is addressed and may contain confidential
and/or privileged material. This may contain personal medical information
protected by the Privacy Act of 1974 (see AFI 33-332) and the Health
Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) (see DoD 6025.18-R) not
intended for disclosure outside government channels and exempt from
mandatory disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act, 5 U.S.C.552.
Exemption 6 may apply. Do not release outside of DoD channels without the
consent of the originator's office. If received this in error, please
notify the sender and destroy all copies.

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