The CIA also took advantage of the fact that many of their test subjects were vulnerable people who were struggling with mental illness or addiction. In some cases, they even recruited prisoners and homeless people to participate in their experiments. The
promise of money or other rewards was often enough to convince these people to go along with whatever the CIA asked of them.
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It’s hard to say how many people were affected by Project MK-Ultra, but it’s estimated that thousands of people may have been subjected to mind-control techniques. Many of these people never knew what happened to them and were left with permanent psychological damage.
Methods used to experiment on people included:
- administering drugs, including LSD, to unsuspecting victims
- isolated confinement
- sensory deprivation
- sleep deprivation
- sexual abuse
- electric shock therapy
- and many others.
If you have ever wondered how the CIA was able to get away with such unethical and morally dubious experiments, it’s because they used a loophole in the law. MK-Ultra was technically legal because the CIA used private institutions and hospitals to carry out their experiments. This meant that they didn’t have to follow the same rules and regulations as government-run programs.
These experiments remained secret for many years, but some details began to emerge in the 1970s. In 1975, the New York Times published an article about MK-Ultra and the CIA’s use of LSD. This led to the 1976 Church Committee hearings which brought to light some of the atrocities of MK-Ultra however, the CIA has never been held accountable for its actions. In fact, many of the documents related to MK-Ultra were destroyed in 1973
on the orders of then-Director of Central Intelligence Richard Helms. As a result, we thought we may never know the full extent of the CIA’s mind control experiments, until 1977, when Admiral Stansfield Turner revealed that some 20,000 documents had miraculously been found.
The Church Committee was a United States Senate select committee in 1975 that investigated wrongdoings by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), National Security Agency (NSA), Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and the Department of Defense (DoD). Its revelations spurred a series of reforms that curtailed some of these agencies’
The committee was chaired by Senator Frank Church of Idaho, who said upon the committee’s formation in January 1975 that “the CIA, the NSA, and the FBI have been engaged in espionage against Americans. They have used illegal means to obtain information and they have violated the constitutional rights of American citizens.”
The committee uncovered many illegal activities carried out by the CIA, NSA, and FBI, including covert experiments on unwitting U.S. citizens, attempted assassinations of foreign leaders, and infiltration of domestic political groups.
The committee also found that the CIA had been stockpiling weapons of mass destruction, including bacteria and viruses that could be used for biological warfare.
Some of the more famous subjects of MK-Ultra experiments were writer Aldous Huxley, who was given LSD by MK-Ultra researcher Dr. Humphry Osmond; Beat poet Allen Ginsberg, who was also given LSD by Osmond; and Ken Kesey, who volunteered for MK-Ultra experiments while he was a student at Stanford University.
Aldous Huxley’s experiences with LSD led him to write about his own mystical experiences and the potential of psychedelics to change consciousness. He also wrote about the dangers of using mind-altering drugs for nefarious purposes.
Allen Ginsberg used his experiences with LSD to fuel his poetry, which was often critical of the establishment. He also became an outspoken advocate for the use of psychedelics for spiritual and therapeutic purposes.
Ken Kesey’s experiences with LSD led him to become a leader of the counterculture movement of the 1960s. He also wrote about his experiences in a novel called One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest.
Some of the alleged infamous subjects of MK-Ultra mind control experiments are Ted Kaczynski, also known as the “Unabomber,” Sirhan Sirhan, who allegedly assassinated Robert F. Kennedy, Mark David Chapman, who assassinated John Lennon, and Whitey Bulge, who was a notorious Boston gangster.
Ted Kaczynski was a mathematics prodigy who became a professor at the University of California, Berkeley. He later renounced his academic career and began living as a recluse in a remote cabin in Montana. In the 1970s, he began sending bombs through the mail to people he saw as enemies of the environment. He was eventually captured and is now serving a life
sentence in prison.
Sirhan Sirhan was a Palestinian immigrant who had been living in the United States for several years when he assassinated Robert F. Kennedy. Sirhan has never been able to remember what happened on the night of the shooting and some people have speculated that he was under the influence of mind control when he pulled the trigger.
Mark David Chapman killed John Lennon in December 1980. Chapman has said that he was inspired to kill Lennon after reading The Catcher in the Rye, which is a novel about a teenage boy who is alienated from society. Chapman has also claimed that he was hearing voices in his head telling him to kill Lennon.
Whitey Bulger was a Boston gangster who rose to power in the 1970s and 1980s. He was allegedly an informant for the FBI and used his position to eliminate his rivals in the criminal underworld. Bulger was eventually captured and is now serving a life sentence in prison.
As we know (or suspect) this wasn’t the CIA’s only foray with illegal substances or drug trafficking. In fact, the CIA has been linked to drug trafficking and running drugs into the U.S. since its inception, most notably during the Vietnam War with the “Air America” program.
Air America was a CIA-operated airline that was allegedly involved in drug trafficking during the Vietnam War. The airline was used to transport weapons, supplies, and mercenaries during the war. It has also been alleged that Air America pilots were involved in smuggling drugs into the United States.
Although, the CIA has denied any involvement in drug trafficking, there is a long history of the agency being involved in illegal activities. The fact that the CIA was involved in mind control experiments only adds to the suspicion that the agency is capable of just about anything.
What do you think? Are the CIA’s dark secrets finally coming to light? Or is this just another conspiracy theory? Let us know in the contact us section.
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Be sure to check out our other blog posts subject such as – The Montauk Project: The U.S. Government’s Top-Secret Program
Conducting Experiments on Humans