Fonti archivistiche, «riservate» o «segrete», per la storia dell’Italia repubblicana: tra normativa e prassi
N. 3, LUGLIO-SETTEMBRE
«Confidential» or «secret» archival sources for the history of Republican Italy: between norms and practise
In 2007, Parliament passed a reform bill on the intelligence and security services, along with secrecy procedures; the bill introduced, for the first time in Italy, a limit to the duration of State secrecy, which now cannot exceed 30 years. Unfortunately, lawmakers have neglected to bring the new norms into harmony with other laws still in force, connected more or less directly with these subjects. These include the Code of Cultural and Environmental Heritage, which establishes a 50-year limit for accessing confidential records connected with foreign or domestic policy; and the bill on administrative action of 2005, which lists various cases of restricted accessibility to administrative records, without mentioning a time limit, and delegating the question to normative guidelines of secondary rank. Such contra dictory rules may have contributed to the delay in applying the articles of the 2007 law concerning the duration of State secrecy and the ensuing declassification of documents. A further negative element is the frequent lack of accessibility, in historical archives, to holdings going back to the 1950s or 1960s: even confidential records issued by the State’s central bodies in the fifties quite often turn out to be either missing or not yet freely accessible. The essay ends with a survey of the special norms governing the accessibility of records held in Parliament’s historical archives, focussing on the papers of committees of inquiry.