Alumna Dana Priest updates security report in light of Boston bombings

How safe is 'Top Secret America' after the marathon attack?

Dana Priest
Washington Post reporter Dana Priest
Washington Post reporter Dana Priest (Merrill, '81, politics) has updated a television report on the national security industrial complex in light of the Boston Marathon bombings.

The report, "Top Secret America – 9/11 to the Boston Bombings," airs on the PBS program "Frontline" tonight (April 30). It is an updated version of a program that originally aired in September 2011.

The program is based on "Top Secret America,” published in 2010 by the Post, the result of a two-year investigation Priest and her colleague William M. Arkin made into the enormous ecosystem of military, intelligence, and corporate interests spawned in the decade after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. The report won a George Polk Award for National Reporting in 2011.

Priest, twice winner of the Pulitzer Prize, traces the journey from 9/11 to the marathon bombings, examining efforts to improve information sharing among federal agencies tasked with protecting the nation. She also investigates the secret history of the 12-year battle against terrorism.

"Top Secret America" revealed that the business of keeping Americans safe involved at the time 854,000 people with top-secret security clearances working on counter-terrorism and homeland-security issues for 1,271 government organizations and 1,931 private companies in some 10,000 locations across the U.S.