It is a documented fact that the United States Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) engaged in secret and illegal mind control experiments for at least 23 years.
The experiments officially ended in 1973, but may well continue to the present day.
Interrogation and torture techniques developed during the experiments were still in use after the year 2000 at numerous military prisons, including Guantanamo Bay and Abu Ghraib.
One of the stated goals of the mind control programs was laid out in a CIA memo from January 1952, which read: “Can we get control of an individual to the point where he will do our bidding against his will and even against fundamental laws of nature, such as self-preservation?”
The question that lingers is: Did it work?
The Early Years
In 1945, the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), which would soon be replaced by the CIA, began Operation Paperclip, a program that tracked down and captured German scientists at the end of World War II, then secretly brought them to the United States.
While many of the scientists were experts in medicine, rocketry, aeronautics and electronics, some had been involved in brainwashing and torture, especially on the doomed prisoners of Nazi concentration camps.
See also: 10 Methods of Mind Control
In 1950, the CIA began Project Bluebird, which was later renamed Project Artichoke, and grew directly from Operation Paperclip.
The purpose of the project was to develop “the means to control individuals through special interrogation techniques,” “ways to prevent the extraction of information from CIA agents,” and “offensive uses of unconventional techniques, such as hypnosis and drugs.”
The project studied the use of hypnosis, forced morphine addiction and withdrawal, and the use of other chemicals to produce amnesia and other vulnerable states in subjects.
Project Bluebird researchers experimented with a wide variety of chemicals, including the hallucinogenics LSD and PCP, as well as heroin, cocaine, and ether. Researchers dosed over 7,000 U.S. military personnel with LSD, without their knowledge or consent.
The Death of Frank Olson
One notorious incident happened in November of 1953, when Frank Olson, a researcher in biological warfare at Fort Detrick in Maryland, was slipped a dose of LSD in a glass of wine.
After ingesting the dose of LSD, Olson suffered severe paranoia and a subsequent mental breakdown. The CIA sent Olson to New York City to see a CIA psychiatrist involved in the mind control experiments.
Nine days after being dosed, Olson fell or was thrown from the tenth-story window of a Manhattan hotel. It was only in 1977, 24 years later, and after the mind control programs became known publicly, that the CIA admitted the circumstances surrounding Olson’s death
The man who slipped Olson the LSD was Sydney Gottlieb, a CIA agent who would soon run something called Project MK-ULTRA. Gottlieb, whose nicknames included “The Black Sorcerer” and “The Dirty Trickster,” would receive the CIA’s Distinguished Intelligence Medal for outstanding service upon his retirement in 1972.
By late 1953, Project Artichoke had morphed into Project MK-ULTRA, an effort that vastly expanded both the types of mind control experiments conducted, and the sheer number of institutions and test subjects involved.
MK-ULTRA used numerous methods to manipulate people’s mental states and alter brain functions, including the administration of drugs (especially LSD) and other chemicals, hypnosis, sensory deprivation, isolation, verbal and sexual abuse, as well as various forms of torture.
Experiments took place at more than 80 institutions, including at least 44 colleges, as well as hospitals, prisons and pharmaceutical companies. Thousands of American and Canadian citizens were unwitting victims. Children were often taken from orphanages and group homes for the purpose of experimentation.
Operation Midnight Climax
Certain sub-projects of MK-ULTRA were particularly disturbing. Operation Midnight Climax, for example, took place at a web of CIA safe houses in several cities across the United States, including New York and San Francisco.
The CIA hired prostitutes to bring clients back to the safe houses, where the unwitting clients were drugged with various substances, especially LSD, then monitored through one-way glass.
The CIA used the program to pioneer sexual blackmail, surveillance and drug-assisted interrogation techniques. Numerous victims died while in custody.
The director of that program, George Hunter White, is on record as saying, “… it was fun, fun, fun. Where else could a red-blooded American boy lie, kill, cheat, steal, rape and pillage with the sanction and bidding of the All-highest?”
Ewan Cameron and Sub-project 68
In 1957, Scottish-born psychiatrist Donald Ewan Cameron was hired by the CIA to carry out Sub-project 68, which took place at the Allen Memorial Institute, a psychiatric hospital on the grounds of McGill University in Montreal, Canada.
By all accounts, Cameron was a madman. His experiments were designed to “de-pattern” his victims, erasing their minds and their memories, then rebuilding their personality in a manner of his choosing. To achieve this result, Cameron went to extremes.
He used drug-induced comas, at one point putting a victim in a coma for 88 days. He used high voltage electric shocks, often administering up to 360 shocks per person. He used isolation and sensory deprivation, locking his “patients” in specially designed sensory deprivation chambers for weeks at a time.
He also used rape and sexual abuse. In at least one case, a child in his care was filmed having sex with several high-ranking officials in the U.S. government, ostensibly to later blackmail the men into continuing funding for the program.
In 1973, CIA Director Richard Helms, concerned that the program would be found out, ordered all MK-ULTRA records destroyed. Most records were shredded.
Discovery of MK-ULTRA
However, 20,000 files were mistakenly labeled as financial records, and were stored in another building. These files survived, and were discovered in 1977.
In 1975, a Congressional committee had investigated the program, and the files served as further confirmation of its existence. No one involved was ever charged with a crime.
Many people believe that MK-ULTRA continues in some form to this day. Given the CIA’s dark criminal history, and tendency to lie about and conceal its activities, there’s little reason to believe otherwise.
It is well documented that during MK-ULTRA, numerous torture and interrogation techniques were pioneered. And it was a stated goal of the program to create mind-control slaves. Many believe that these mind control techniques were perfected.
In particular, it is believed that mind control slaves can be created through repeated sexual, verbal and psychological abuse when the subject is most vulnerable – during childhood.
Multiple personality disorder is thought to be caused by severe trauma in childhood. It is thought that multiple personalities can be created through deliberate abuse, with the goal of creating personalities for specific purposes. When successful, the victim can be “triggered” to become these separate personalities.
Now we get a little bit into (egads!) conspiracy theory. While it is documented that the CIA engaged in torture and sexual abuse of children, more than 90% of the documents related to MK-ULTRA were destroyed. There is no publicly available documentation that mind control attempts of this nature have been successful.
However, many people believe that mind control does work, and that mind control slaves are used for numerous purposes, most notably as assassins, mass murderers, and sex slaves. Individuals often thought to be victims of mind control include Sirhan Sirhan, Mark David Chapman, John Hinckley, Jr., Anna Nicole Smith, and even Britney Spears.