THE CIA’S HUMAN EXPERIMENTS WITH MIND CONTROL
ON APRIL 10, 1953, ALLEN DULLES, THE NEWLY APPOINTED DIRECTOR OF THE CIA, delivered a speech to a gathering of Princeton alumni. Though the event was mundane, global tensions were running high. The Korean War was coming to an end, and earlier that week, The New York Times had published a startling story asserting that American POWs returning from the country may have been “converted” by “Communist brain-washers.”
Some GI’s were confessing to war crimes, like carrying out germ warfare against the Communists–a charge the U.S. categorically denied. Others were reportedly so brainwashed that they had refused to return to the United States at all. As if that weren’t enough, the U.S. was weeks away from secretly sponsoring the overthrow of a democratically elected leader in Iran.
Dulles had just become the first civilian director of an agency growing more powerful by the day, and the speech provided an early glimpse into his priorities for the CIA. “In the past few years we have become accustomed to hearing much about the battle for men’s minds–the war of ideologies,” he told the attendees. “I wonder, however, whether we clearly perceive the magnitude of the problem, whether we realize how sinister the battle for men’s minds has become in Soviet hands,” he continued. “We might call it, in its new form, ‘brain warfare.’”
Dulles proceeded to describe the “Soviet brain perversion techniques” as effective, but “abhorrent” and “nefarious.” He gestured to the American POWs returning from Korea, shells of the men they once were, parroting the Communist propagandathey had heard cycled for weeks on end. He expressed fears and uncertainty–were they using chemical agents? Hypnosis? Something else entirely? “We in the West,” the CIA Director conceded, “are somewhat handicapped in brain warfare.” This sort of non-consensual experiment, even on one’s enemies, was antithetical to American values, Dulles insisted, as well as antithetical to what should be human values.
Fear of brainwashing and a new breed of “brain warfare” terrified and fascinated the American public throughout the 1950s, spurred both by the words of the CIA and the stories of “brainwashed” G.I.’s returning from China, Korea, and the Soviet Union. Newspaper headlines like “New Evils Seen in Brainwashing” and “Brainwashing vs. Western Psychiatry” offered sensational accounts of new mind-control techniques and technologies that no man could fully resist. The paranoia began to drift into American culture, with books like The Manchurian Candidate and The Naked Lunch playing on themes of unhinged scientists and vast political conspiracies.
The idea of brainwashing also provided many Americans with a compelling, almost comforting, explanation for communism’s swift rise–that Soviets used the tools of brainwashing not just on enemy combatants, but on their own people. Why else would so many countries be embracing such an obviously backward ideology? American freedom of the mind versus Soviet “mind control” became a dividing line as stark as the Iron Curtain.
The CIA used these reasons as justification to carry out a campaign of drugging American Citizens without their knowledge or consent. In violation of Constitutional Rights and Privileges as Citizens and Human Beings.
Three days after his speech decrying Soviet tactics, Dulles approved the beginning of MK-Ultra, a top-secret CIA program for “covert use of biological and chemical materials.” “American values” made for good rhetoric, but Dulles had far grander plans for the agency’s Cold War agenda.
Project MK Ultra, also called the CIA mind control program, is the code name given to a program of experiments on human subjects that were designed and undertaken by the United States Central Intelligence Agency—and which were, at times, illegal. Experiments on humans were intended to identify and develop drugs and procedures to be used in interrogations in order to weaken the individual and force confessions through mind control. The project was organized through the Office of Scientific Intelligence of the CIA and coordinated with the U.S. Army Biological Warfare Laboratories.
The operation was officially sanctioned in 1953, was reduced in scope in 1964, further curtailed in 1967, and recorded to be halted in 1973. There remains controversy over whether this operation ever ended, or continues even now. The program engaged in many illegal activities, including the use of U.S. and Canadian citizens as its unwitting test subjects, which led to controversy regarding its legitimacy. MK Ultra used numerous methods to manipulate people’s mental states and alter brain functions, including the surreptitious administration of drugs (especially LSD) and other chemicals, hypnosis, sensory deprivation, isolation, verbal and sexual abuse (including the sexual abuse of children), and other forms of torture.
MK-Ultra’s “mind control” experiments generally centered around behavior modification via electro-shock therapy, hypnosis, polygraphs, radiation, and a variety of drugs, toxins, and chemicals. These experiments relied on a range of test subjects: some who freely volunteered, some who volunteered under coercion, and some who had absolutely no idea they were involved in a sweeping defense research program. From mentally-impaired boys at a state school, to American soldiers, to “sexual psychopaths” at a state hospital, MK-Ultra’s programs often preyed on the most vulnerable members of society. The CIA considered prisoners especially good subjects, as they were willing to give consent in exchange for extra recreation time or commuted sentences.
Whitey Bulger, a former organized crime boss, wrote of his experience as an inmate test subject in MK-Ultra. “Eight convicts in a panic and paranoid state,” Bulger said of the 1957 tests at the Atlanta penitentiary where he was serving time. “Total loss of appetite. Hallucinating. The room would change shape. Hours of paranoia and feeling violent. We experienced horrible periods of living nightmares and even blood coming out of the walls. Guys turning to skeletons in front of me. I saw a camera change into the head of a dog. I felt like I was going insane.”
Bulger claimed he had been injected with LSD. Lysergic acid diethylamide, or acid, had become one of the CIA’s key interests for its “brain warfare” program, as the agency theorized it could be useful in interrogations. In the late 1940s, the CIA received reports that the Soviet Union had engaged in “intensive efforts to produce LSD,” and that the Soviets had attempted to purchase the world’s supply of the chemical. One CIA officer described the agency as “literally terrified” of the Soviets’ LSD program, largely because of the lack of knowledge about the drug in the United States. “[This] was the one material that we had ever been able to locate that really had potential fantastic possibilities if used wrongly,” the officer testified.
With the advent of MK-Ultra, the government’s interest in LSD shifted from a defensive to an offensive orientation. Agency officials noted that LSD could be potentially useful in “[gaining] control of bodies whether they were willing or not.” The CIA envisioned applications that ranged from removing people from Europe in the case of a Soviet attack to enabling assassinations of enemy leaders. On November 18, 1953, a group of ten scientists met at a cabin located deep in the forests of Maryland. After extended discussions, the participants agreed that to truly understand the value of the drug, “an unwitting experiment would be desirable.”
The CIA remained keenly aware of how the public would react to any discovery of MK-Ultra; even if they believed these programs to be essential to national security, they must remain a tightly guarded secret. How would the CIA possibly explain dosing unassuming Americans with LSD? “Precautions must be taken not only to protect operations from exposure to enemy forces but also to conceal these activities from the American public in general,” wrote the CIA’s Inspector General in 1957. “The knowledge that the Agency is engaging in unethical and illicit activities would have serious repercussions in political and diplomatic circles and would be detrimental to the accomplishment of its mission.”
As if the above described experiments were not horrible enough, they then begin to slip LSD to unknowing and unwilling American Citizens without their knowledge or consent.
OPERATION MIDNIGHT CLIMAX
The CIA’s initial experiments with LSD were fairly simple, if shockingly unethical. The agency generally dosed single targets, finding volunteers when they could, sometimes slipping the drug into the drinks of fellow CIA employees. Over time these LSD experiments grew increasingly elaborate. Perhaps the most notorious of these projects was Operation Midnight Climax.
It is very interesting that their drug experiments were centered in Berkeley where all the anti government socialist spewing demonstrations began. It is also interesting that the drug experiments morphed into sex experiments as the free love open sex movement also began at Berkeley. This is why Berkeley has become the center of intolerance and hate.
In 1955, on 225 Chestnut Street, San Francisco, the CIA was devoting substantial attention to decorating a bedroom. George White oversaw the interior renovations. Not much of a decorator, White had a storied career in the Federal Bureau of Narcotics. When the CIA moved into drug experiments, bringing White on board became a top priority.
White hung up pictures of French can-can dancers and flowers. He draped lush red bedroom curtains over the windows. He framed a series of Toulouse-Lautrec posters with black silk mats. For a middle-aged drug bureaucrat, each item evoked sex and glamour.
George White wasn’t building a normal bedroom, he was building a trap.
White then hired a Berkeley engineering student to install bugging equipment and a two-way mirror. White sat behind the mirror, martini in hand, and waited for the action to begin. Prostitutes would lure unsuspecting johns to the bedroom, where the men would be dosed with LSD and their actions observed by White from beyond the mirror. As payment for their services the sex workers receive small amounts of cash, as well as a guarantee from White that he’d intercede when the women inevitably had run-ins with law enforcement in the future.
Though the CIA piloted these safe houses as a stage for testing the effects of LSD, White’s interest shifted to another element of his observations: the sex. The San Francisco house became the center of what one writer called “the CIA carnal operations,” as officials began asking new questions about how to work with prostitutes, how they could be trained, and how they would handle state secrets. The agency also analyzed when in the course of a sexual encounter information could best be extracted from a source, eventually concluding that it was immediately after sex.
But perhaps unsurprisingly, much of White’s actions were driven by pure voyeurism: “I toiled wholeheartedly in the vineyards because it was fun, fun, fun,” White later said. “Where else could a red-blooded American boy lie, kill, cheat, steal, rape, and pillage with the sanction and blessing of the All-Highest?”
The scope of Project MK Ultra was broad with research undertaken at 80 institutions, including colleges and universities, hospitals, prisons, and pharmaceutical companies. The CIA operated through these institutions using front organizations, although sometimes top officials at these institutions were aware of the CIA’s involvement.
Sidney Gottlieb approved of an MKUltra sub-project on LSD in this June 9, 1953, letter.
The project’s intentionally obscure CIA cryptonym is made up of the digraph MK, meaning that the project was sponsored by the agency’s Technical Services Staff, followed by the word Ultra which had previously been used to designate the most secret classification of World War II intelligence. Other related cryptonyms include Project MKNAOMI and Project MKDELTA.
The project was headed by Sidney Gottlieb, but began on the order of CIA director Allen Welsh Dulles on April 13, 1953. Its aim was to develop mind-controlling drugs for use against the Soviet bloc in response to alleged Soviet, Chinese, and North Korean use of mind control techniques on U.S. prisoners of war during the Korean War. The CIA wanted to use similar methods on their own captives, and they were interested in being able to manipulate foreign leaders with such techniques and invented several schemes to drug Fidel Castro. They often conducted experiments without the subjects’ knowledge or consent. In some cases, academic researchers were funded through grants from CIA front organizations but were unaware that the CIA was using their work for these purposes.
The project attempted to produce a perfect truth drug for interrogating suspected Soviet spies during the Cold War, and to explore other possibilities of mind control. Sub project 54 was another MK Ultra effort and was the Navy’s top secret “Perfect Concussion” program, which was supposed to use sub-aural frequency blasts to erase memory. However, the program was never carried out.
REMEMBER THE CUBAN EMBASSY HIGH FREQUENCY AUDIO WAVE PROBLEM CAUSING HEARING LOSS, HEADACHES, AND OTHER PROBLEMS TO OUR EMBASSY STAFF? STILL BELIEVE THEY NEVER EXPERIMENTED BEFORE?
Most MK Ultra records were destroyed in 1973 by order of CIA director Richard Helms, so it has been difficult for investigators to gain a complete understanding of more than 150 funded research sub-projects sponsored by MK Ultra and related CIA programs.
The project began during a period of what Rupert Cornwell described as “paranoia” at the CIA, when the U.S. had lost its nuclear monopoly and fear of Communism was at its height. CIA counter-intelligence chief James Jesus Angleton believed that a mole had penetrated the organization at the highest levels. The agency poured millions of dollars into studies examining methods of influencing and controlling the mind and of enhancing their ability to extract information from resistant subjects during interrogation. Some historians assert that one goal of MK Ultra and related CIA projects was to create a “Manchurian Candidate” subject through mind control techniques. Alfred McCoy has claimed that the CIA attempted to focus media attention on these sorts of “ridiculous” programs so that the public would not look at the primary goal of the research, which was developing effective methods of interrogation. A disinformation campaign so no one would object to their experiments.
One 1955 MK Ultra document gives an indication of the size and range of the effort. It refers to the study of an assortment of mind-altering substances described as follows:
- Substances which will promote illogical thinking and impulsiveness to the point where the recipient would be discredited in public.
- Substances which increase the efficiency of mentation and perception.
- Materials which will cause the victim to age faster/slower in maturity.
- Materials which will promote the intoxicating effect of alcohol.
- Materials which will produce the signs and symptoms of recognized diseases in a reversible way so they may be used for malingering, etc.
- Materials which will cause temporary/permanent brain damage and loss of memory.
- Substances which will enhance the ability of individuals to withstand privation, torture, and coercion during interrogation and so-called “brain-washing”.
- Materials and physical methods which will produce amnesia for events preceding and during their use.
- Physical methods of producing shock and confusion over extended periods of time and capable of surreptitious use.
- Substances which produce physical disablement such as paralysis of the legs, acute anemia, etc.
- Substances which will produce a chemical that can cause blisters.
- Substances which alter personality structure in such a way the tendency of the recipient to become dependent upon another person is enhanced.
- A material which will cause mental confusion of such a type the individual under its influence will find it difficult to maintain a fabrication under questioning.
- Substances which will lower the ambition and general working efficiency of men when administered in undetectable amounts.
- Substances which promote weakness or distortion of the eyesight or hearing faculties, preferably without permanent effects.
- A knockout pill which can be surreptitiously administered in drinks, food, cigarettes, as an aerosol, etc., which will be safe to use, provide a maximum of amnesia, and be suitable for use by agent types on an ad hoc basis.
- A material which can be surreptitiously administered by the above routes and which in very small amounts will make it impossible for a person to perform physical activity.
The Church Committee report in 1976 found that, in the MK DELTA program, “Drugs were used primarily as an aid to interrogations, but MK ULTRA/MK DELTA materials were also used for harassment, discrediting, or disabling purposes.”
Other related projects
In 1964, MK SEARCH was the name given to the continuation of the MK ULTRA program. The MK SEARCH program was divided into two projects dubbed MK OFTEN/CHICKWIT. Funding for MK SEARCH commenced in 1965, and ended in 1971. The project was a joint project between The U.S. Army Chemical Corps and the Central Intelligence Agency’s Office of Research and Development to find new offensive-use agents with a focus on incapacitating agents. The purpose of the project was to develop, test, and evaluate capabilities in the covert use of biological, chemical, and radioactive material systems and techniques for producing predictable human behavioral and/or physiological changes in support of highly sensitive operational requirements.
By March 1971 over 26,000 potential agents had been acquired for future screening. The CIA were interested in bird migration patterns for CBW research under MK/ULTRA where, a Sub project 139 designated “Bird Disease Studies” at Penn State.
MKOFTEN was to deal with testing and toxicological, transmissivity and behavioral effects of drugs in animals and, ultimately, humans.
MKCHICKWIT was concerned with acquiring information on new drug developments in Europe and the Orient, and with acquiring samples.
Experiments on Americans
CIA documents suggest that they investigated “chemical, biological, and radiological” methods of mind control as part of MK Ultra. They spent an estimated $10 million or more, roughly $87.5 million adjusted for inflation.
Early CIA efforts focused on LSD-25, which later came to dominate many of MK Ultra’s programs. The CIA wanted to know if they could make Soviet spies defect against their will and whether the Soviets could do the same to the CIA’s own operatives.
Once Project MKUltra got underway in April 1953, experiments included administering LSD to mental patients, prisoners, drug addicts, and sex workers—”people who could not fight back,” as one agency officer put it. In one case, they administered LSD to a mental patient in Kentucky for 174 days. They also administered LSD to CIA employees, military personnel, doctors, other government agents, and members of the general public to study their reactions. LSD and other drugs were often administered without the subject’s knowledge or informed consent, a violation of the Nuremberg Code the U.S. had agreed to follow after World War II. The aim of this was to find drugs which would bring out deep confessions or wipe a subject’s mind clean and program him or her as “a robot agent.”
In Operation Midnight Climax, the CIA set up several brothels within agency safe houses in San Francisco, California, to obtain a selection of men who would be too embarrassed to talk about the events. The men were dosed with LSD, the brothels were equipped with one-way mirrors, and the sessions were filmed for later viewing and study. In other experiments where people were given LSD without their knowledge, they were interrogated under bright lights with doctors in the background taking notes. They told subjects they would extend their “trips” if they refused to reveal their secrets. The people under this interrogation were CIA employees, U.S. military personnel, and agents suspected of working for the other side in the Cold War. Long-term debilitation and several deaths resulted from this. Heroin addicts were bribed into taking LSD with offers of more heroin.
At the invitation of Stanford psychology graduate student Vik Lovell, an acquaintance of Richard Alpert and Allen Ginsberg, Ken Kesey volunteered to take part in what turned out to be a CIA-financed study under the aegis of MK ULTRA, at the Menlo Park Veterans’ Hospital where he worked as a night aide. The project studied the effects of psychoactive drugs, particularly LSD, psilocybin, mescaline, cocaine, AMT, and DMT on people.
The Office of Security used LSD in interrogations, but Dr. Sidney Gottlieb, the chemist who directed MK Ultra, had other ideas: he thought it could be used in covert operations. Since its effects were temporary, he believed one could give it to high-ranking officials and in this way affect the course of important meetings, speeches, etc. Since he realized there was a difference in testing the drug in a laboratory and using it in clandestine operations, he initiated a series of experiments where LSD was given to people in “normal” settings without warning. At first, everyone in Technical Services tried it; a typical experiment involved two people in a room where they observed each other for hours and took notes. As the experimentation progressed, a point arrived where outsiders were drugged with no explanation whatsoever and surprise acid trips became something of an occupational hazard among CIA operatives. Adverse reactions often occurred, such as an operative who received the drug in his morning coffee, became psychotic and ran across Washington, seeing a monster in every car passing him. The experiments continued even after Dr. Frank Olson, an Army scientist who had not taken LSD before, went into deep depression after a surprise trip and later fell from a thirteenth story window.
Some subjects’ participation was consensual, and in these cases they appeared to be singled out for even more extreme experiments. In one case, seven volunteers in Kentucky were given LSD for seventy-seven consecutive days.
MK Ultra’s researchers later dismissed LSD as too unpredictable in its results. They gave up on the notion LSD was “the secret that was going to unlock the universe,” but it still had a place in the cloak-and-dagger arsenal. However, by 1962 the CIA and the army developed a series of super hallucinogens such as the highly touted BZ, which was thought to hold greater promise as a mind control weapon. This resulted in the withdrawal of support by many academics and private researchers, and LSD research became less of a priority altogether.
Another technique investigated was the intravenous administration of a barbiturate into one arm and an amphetamine into the other. The barbiturates were released into the person first, and as soon as the person began to fall asleep, the amphetamines were released. The person would begin babbling incoherently, and it was sometimes possible to ask questions and get useful answers.
Declassified MK Ultra documents indicate they studied hypnosis in the early 1950’s. Experimental goals included: the creation of “hypnotically induced anxieties,” “hypnotically increasing ability to learn and recall complex written matter,” studying hypnosis and polygraph examinations, “hypnotically increasing ability to observe and recall complex arrangements of physical objects,” and studying “relationship of personality to susceptibility to hypnosis.” They conducted experiments with drug induced hypnosis and with anterograde and retrograde amnesia while under the influence of such drugs.
Experiments on Canadians
They exported experiments to Canada when the CIA recruited British psychiatrist Donald Ewen Cameron, creator of the “psychic driving” concept, which the CIA found interesting. Cameron had been hoping to correct schizophrenia by erasing existing memories and reprogramming the psyche. He commuted from Albany, New York, to Montreal every week to work at the Allan Memorial Institute of McGill University and was paid $69,000 from 1957 to 1964 (which would be $603,580 in today’s currency, adjusting for inflation) to carry MK Ultra experiments there, the Montreal experiments. These research funds were sent to Dr. Cameron by a CIA front organization, the Society for the Investigation of Human Ecology, and as shown in internal CIA documents, Cameron did not know the money came from the CIA. In addition to LSD, Cameron also experimented with various paralytic drugs as well as electroconvulsive therapy at thirty to forty times the normal power. His “driving” experiments consisted of putting subjects into drug-induced comas for weeks at a time (up to three months in one case) while playing tape loops of noise or simple repetitive statements. His experiments were often carried on patients who entered the institute for minor problems such as anxiety disorders and postpartum depression, many of whom suffered permanent effects from his actions. His treatments resulted in victims’ incontinence, amnesia, forgetting how to talk, forgetting their parents, and thinking their interrogators were their parents. Several of the children who Cameron experimented on were sexually abused, in at least one case by several men. One of the children claimed that she was filmed numerous times performing sexual acts with high-ranking federal government officials, in a scheme she said was set up by Cameron and other MK ULTRA researchers, to blackmail the officials to ensure further funding for the experiments.
YES, YOU READ THAT RIGHT! THE U.S. CIA HUMAN TRAFFICKED CHILDREN FOR SEX WITH POLITICIANS AND HIGH RANKING GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS TO BLACKMAIL THEM TO CONTINUE FUNDING MK ULTRA, EVEN AFTER THE CONGRESSIONAL HEARINGS IN THE U.S. CONGRESS.
If they were doing it then, what reason do we have that they ever stopped? Isn’t it a coincidence that human trafficking for SEX has increased year after year with no signs of diminishing? If the CIA and FBI and NSA can see all communications of everyone, why do they allow these HEINOUS crimes to continue? THE ANSWER MAY MAKE YOU SICK TO YOUR STOMACH AND CAUSE YOU TO LOSE SLEEP!!!
THIS IS WHY DONALD TRUMP IS SO IMPORTANT! HE IS DOING HIS BEST TO EXPOSE AND DESTROY THESE CRIMINALS DEEP WITHIN OUR GOVERNMENT AND IN PLACES THEY BELIEVE THEY ARE UNTOUCHABLE! The real question is why are so many High ranking DemonRats and Rino Republicans so much against him???? THAT ANSWER WILL CAUSE YOU TO BE SICK AND LOSE SLEEP ALSO!!!!!!
His work was inspired and paralleled by the British psychiatrist William Sargant at St Thomas’ Hospital, London, and Belmont Hospital, Surrey, who was also involved in the Intelligence Services and who experimented on his patients without their consent, causing similar long-term damage. In the 1980s, several of Cameron’s former patients sued the CIA for damages, which the Canadian news program The Fifth Estate documented. Their experiences and lawsuit was made into a 1998 television miniseries called The Sleep Room.
During this era, Cameron became known worldwide as the first chairman of the World Psychiatric Association as well as president of the American and Canadian psychiatric associations. Cameron was also a member of the Nuremberg medical tribunal in 1946–47. Naomi Klein argues in her book The Shock Doctrine Cameron’s research and his contribution to the MK Ultra project was not about mind control and brainwashing, but about designing “a scientifically based system for extracting information from ‘resistant sources.’ In other words, torture.” Alfred W. McCoy writes “Stripped of its bizarre excesses, Dr. Cameron’s experiments, building upon Donald O. Hebb‘s earlier breakthrough, laid the scientific foundation for the CIA’s two-stage psychological torture method,” which refers to first creating a state of disorientation in the subject, and then second creating a situation of “self-inflicted” discomfort in which the disoriented subject can alleviate their pain by capitulating.
The Church Committee report in 1976 found that, in the MK DELTA program, “Drugs were used primarily as an aid to interrogations, but MK ULTRA/MK DELTA materials were also used for harassment, discrediting, or disabling purposes.”
SOUND FAMILIAR? HOW MANY TIMES HAVE SCHOOL SHOOTERS AND OTHER MASS SHOOTERS SAID THEY WERE TOLD TO DO IT AND THE RINGING IN THEIR HEAD WOULD NOT STOP UNTIL THEY COMPLIED? Kinda makes you stop and think doesn’t it? Not so crazy anymore is it? Can we really afford to allow agencies with so much power and so little morality to continue to exist?
THE DEMISE OF MK-ULTRA
The CIA’s experiments with LSD persisted until 1963 before coming to a fairly anticlimactic end. In the spring of 1963, John Vance, a member of the CIA Inspector General’s staff, learned about the project’s “surreptitious administration to unwitting non-voluntary human subjects.” Though the MK-Ultra directors tried to convince the CIA’s independent audit board that the research should continue, the Inspector General insisted the agency follow new research ethics guidelines and bring all the programs on non-consenting volunteers to an end.
This was spring 1963 when a good man with a good moral character discovered the existence of the secret experiments on the American People, and even though ordered to end the experiments, they still wanted to continue. Of course, the Inspector General brought this to the attention of President JFK, who then gave a speech where he alluded to secret agencies and societies waging a war against the American people and way of life, and vowed to splinter the CIA into a thousand pieces. But, President JFK was assassinated before he could dismantle it.
The new President Johnson was very eager to continue full steam ahead. This is cause for concern. Did the CIA plot and kill a sitting U.S. President to protect itself from annihilation?
Project MK Ultra was first brought to public attention in 1975 by the Church Committee of the United States Congress and Gerald Ford‘s United States President’s Commission on CIA activities within the United States. Investigative efforts were hampered by the fact that CIA Director Richard Helms ordered all MK Ultra files to be destroyed in 1973; the Church Committee and Rockefeller Commission investigations relied on the sworn testimony of direct participants and on the relatively small number of documents that survived Helms’s destruction order. In 1977, a Freedom of Information Act request uncovered a cache of 20,000 documents relating to project MK Ultra which led to Senate hearings later that year. Some surviving information regarding MK Ultra was declassified in July 2001. In December 2018, declassified documents included a letter to an unidentified doctor discussing work on six dogs made to run, turn and stop via remote control and brain implants.
IF THEY CAN DO THIS TO A DOG, JUST IMAGINE WHAT THEY CAN DO TO A HUMAN. PERHAPS FORCE A PERSON TO KILL PEOPLE IN MASS SHOOTINGS, LIKE SCHOOL SHOOTINGS AND PUBLIC BUILDINGS. MAYBE TARGET SPECIFIC INDIVIDUALS, LIKE PUBLIC OFFICIALS.
In 1973, amid a government-wide panic caused by Watergate, CIA Director Richard Helms ordered all MK Ultra files destroyed. Pursuant to this order, most CIA documents regarding the project were destroyed, making a full investigation of MK Ultra impossible. A cache of some 20,000 documents survived Helms’ purge, as they had been incorrectly stored in a financial records building and were discovered following a FOIA request in 1977. These documents were fully investigated during the Senate Hearings of 1977.
In December 1974, The New York Times alleged that the CIA had conducted illegal domestic activities, including experiments on U.S. citizens, during the 1960’s. That report prompted investigations by the U.S. Congress, in the form of the Church Committee, and by a commission known as the Rockefeller Commission that looked into the illegal domestic activities of the CIA, the FBI, and intelligence-related agencies of the military.
In the summer of 1975, congressional Church Committee reports and the presidential Rockefeller Commission report revealed to the public for the first time that the CIA and the Department of Defense had conducted experiments on both unwitting and cognizant human subjects as part of an extensive program to find out how to influence and control human behavior through the use of psychoactive drugs such as LSD and mescaline and other chemical, biological, and psychological means. They also revealed that at least one subject, Frank Olson had died after administration of LSD. Much of what the Church Committee and the Rockefeller Commission learned about MK Ultra was contained in a report, prepared by the Inspector General’s office in 1963, that had survived the destruction of records ordered in 1973. However, it contained little detail. Sidney Gottlieb, who had retired from the CIA two years previously, was interviewed by the committee but claimed to have very little recollection of the activities of MK Ultra.
The congressional committee investigating the CIA research, chaired by Senator Frank Church, concluded that “[prior consent was obviously not obtained from any of the subjects]”. The committee noted that the “experiments sponsored by these researchers … call into question the decision by the agencies not to fix guidelines for experiments.”
Following the recommendations of the Church Committee, President Gerald Ford in 1976 issued the first Executive Order on Intelligence Activities which, among other things, prohibited “experimentation with drugs on human subjects, except with the informed consent, in writing and witnessed by a disinterested party, of each such human subject” and in accordance with the guidelines issued by the National Commission. Subsequent orders by Presidents Carter and Reagan expanded the directive to apply to any human experimentation.
1977 United States Senate report on MKUltra
In 1977, during a hearing held by the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, to look further into MK Ultra, Admiral Stansfield Turner, then Director of Central Intelligence, revealed that the CIA had found a set of records, consisting of about 20,000 pages, that had survived the 1973 destruction orders because they had been incorrectly stored at a records center not usually used for such documents. These files dealt with the financing of MK Ultra projects and contained few project details, but much more was learned from them than from the Inspector General’s 1963 report.
On the Senate floor in 1977, Senator Ted Kennedy said:
The Deputy Director of the CIA revealed that over thirty universities and institutions were involved in an “extensive testing and experimentation” program which included covert drug tests on unwitting citizens “at all social levels, high and low, native Americans and foreign.” Several of these tests involved the administration of LSD to “unwitting subjects in social situations.
At least one death, the result of the defenestration of Dr. Frank Olson, was attributed to Olson’s being subjected, unaware, to such experimentation, nine days before his death. The CIA itself subsequently acknowledged that these tests had little scientific rationale. The agents conducting the monitoring were not qualified scientific observers.
In Canada, the issue took much longer to surface, becoming widely known in 1984 on a CBC news show, The Fifth Estate. It was learned that not only had the CIA funded Dr. Cameron‘s efforts, but also that the Canadian government was fully aware of this, and had later provided another $500,000 in funding to continue the experiments. This revelation largely derailed efforts by the victims to sue the CIA as their U.S. counterparts had, and the Canadian government eventually settled out of court for $100,000 to each of the 127 victims. Dr. Cameron died on September 8, 1967 after suffering a heart attack while he and his son were mountain climbing. None of Cameron’s personal records of his involvement with MK Ultra survived, since his family destroyed them after his death.
In 1977, Senator Edward Kennedy oversaw congressional hearings investigating the effects of MK-Ultra. Congress brought in a roster of ex-CIA employees for questioning, interrogating them about who oversaw these programs, how participants were identified, and if any of these programs had been continued. The Hearings turned over a number of disturbing details, particularly about the 1953 suicide of Dr. Frank Olson, an Army scientist who jumped out of a hotel window several days after unwittingly consuming a drink spiked with LSD. Amid growing criminalization of drug users, and just a few years after President Nixon declared drug abuse as “public enemy number one,” the ironies of the U.S.’s troubling experimentation with drugs appeared in sharp relief.
But throughout the hearings, Congress kept hitting roadblocks: CIA staffers claimed they “couldn’t remember” details about many of the human experimentation projects, or even the number of people involved. The obvious next step would be to consult the records, but that presented a small problem: in 1973, amid mounting inquiries, the director of MK-Ultra told workers “it would be a good idea if [the MK-Ultra] files were destroyed.” Citing vague concerns about the privacy and “embarrassment” of participants, the men who crafted MK-Ultra effectively eradicated the paper record for one of the United States’ most obviously illegal undertakings. A program born in secrecy would hold onto many of its secrets forever.
The Church Committee was the United States Senate Select Committee to Study Governmental Operations with Respect to Intelligence Activities, a U.S. Senate committee chaired by Idaho Senator Frank Church (D–ID) in 1975. The committee investigated abuses by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), National Security Agency (NSA), Federal Bureau of Investigation(FBI), and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The committee was part of a series of investigations into intelligence abuses in 1975, dubbed the “Year of Intelligence”, including its House counterpart, the Pike Committee, and the presidential Rockefeller Commission. The committee’s efforts led to the establishment of the permanent U.S. Senate Select Committee on Intelligence.
By the early years of the 1970s, a series of troubling revelations had appeared in the press concerning intelligence activities. First came the revelations by Army intelligence officer Christopher Pyle in January 1970 of the U.S. Army‘s spying on the civilian population and Senator Sam Ervin‘s Senate investigations produced more revelations. Then on December 22, 1974, The New York Times published a lengthy article by Seymour Hersh detailing operations engaged in by the CIA over the years that had been dubbed the “family jewels“. Covert action programs involving assassination attempts on foreign leaders and covert attempts to subvert foreign governments were reported for the first time. In addition, the article discussed efforts by intelligence agencies to collect information on the political activities of US citizens.
The creation of the Church Committee was approved on January 27, 1975, by a vote of 82 to 4 in the Senate.
The Church Committee’s final report was published in April 1976 in six books. Also published were seven volumes of Church Committee hearings in the Senate.
Before the release of the final report, the committee also published an interim report titled “Alleged Assassination Plots Involving Foreign Leaders”, which investigated alleged attempts to assassinate foreign leaders, including Patrice Lumumba of Zaire (now known as (the Democratic Republic of the Congo), Rafael Trujillo of the Dominican Republic, Ngo Dinh Diem of Vietnam, Gen. René Schneider of Chile and Fidel Castro of Cuba. President Gerald Ford urged the Senate to withhold the report from the public, but failed, and under recommendations and pressure by the committee, Ford issued Executive Order 11905 (ultimately replaced in 1981 by President Reagan‘s Executive Order 12333) to ban U.S. sanctioned assassinations of foreign leaders.
In addition, the committee produced seven case studies on covert operations, but only the one on Chile was released, titled “Covert Action in Chile: 1963-1973”. The rest were kept secret at CIA’s request.
According to recently declassified documents by the National Security Archive, the Church Committee also helped to uncover the NSA’s Watch List. The information for the list was compiled into the so-called “Rhyming Dictionary” of biographical information, which at its peak held millions of names – thousands of which were US citizens. Some prominent members of this list were Joanne Woodward, Thomas Watson, Walter Mondale, Art Buchwald, Arthur F. Burns, Gregory Peck, Otis G. Pike, Tom Wicker, Whitney Young, Howard Baker, Frank Church, David Dellinger, Ralph Abernathy, and others.
But among the most shocking revelations of the committee was the discovery of Operation SHAMROCK, in which the major telecommunications companies shared their traffic with the NSA from 1945 to the early 1970s. The information gathered in this operation fed directly into the Watch List. In 1975, the committee decided to unilaterally declassify the particulars of this operation, against the objections of President Ford’s administration.
Together, the Church Committee’s reports have been said to constitute the most extensive review of intelligence activities ever made available to the public. Much of the contents were classified, but over 50,000 pages were declassified under the President John F. Kennedy Assassination Records Collection Act of 1992.
The Church Committee learned that, beginning in the 1950s, the CIA and Federal Bureau of Investigation had intercepted, opened and photographed more than 215,000 pieces of mail by the time the program (called “HTLINGUAL“) was shut down in 1973. This program was all done under the “mail covers” program (a mail cover is a process by which the government records—without any requirement for a warrant or for notification—all information on the outside of an envelope or package, including the name of the sender and the recipient). The Church report found that the CIA was careful about keeping the United States Postal Service from learning that government agents were opening mail. CIA agents moved mail to a private room to open the mail or in some cases opened envelopes at night after stuffing them in briefcases or in coat pockets to deceive postal officials.
The Ford administration and the Church Committee
On May 9, 1975, the Church Committee decided to call acting CIA director William Colby. That same day Ford’s top advisers (Henry Kissinger, Donald Rumsfeld, Philip W. Buchen, and John Marsh) drafted a recommendation that Colby be authorized to brief only rather than testify, and that he would be told to discuss only the general subject, with details of specific covert actions to be avoided except for realistic hypotheticals. But the Church Committee had full authority to call a hearing and require Colby’s testimony. Ford and his top advisers met with Colby to prepare him for the hearing. Colby testified, “These last two months have placed American intelligence in danger. The almost hysterical excitement surrounding any news story mentioning CIA or referring even to a perfectly legitimate activity of CIA has raised a question whether secret intelligence operations can be conducted by the United States.”
Results of the investigation
AS A RESULT OF THE COMMITTEE HEARINGS A SITTING U.S. SENATOR GAVE US THIS DIRE WARNING!!!
On August 17, 1975 Senator Frank Church appeared on NBC’s Meet the Press, and discussed the NSA, without mentioning it by name:
In the need to develop a capacity to know what potential enemies are doing, the United States government has perfected a technological capability that enables us to monitor the messages that go through the air. (…) Now, that is necessary and important to the United States as we look abroad at enemies or potential enemies. We must know, at the same time, that capability at any time could be turned around on the American people, and no American would have any privacy left: such is the capability to monitor everything—telephone conversations, telegrams, it doesn’t matter. There would be no place to hide.
If this government ever became a tyranny, if a dictator ever took charge in this country, the technological capacity that the intelligence community has given the government could enable it to impose total tyranny, and there would be no way to fight back because the most careful effort to combine together in resistance to the government, no matter how privately it was done, is within the reach of the government to know. Such is the capability of this technology. (…)
I don’t want to see this country ever go across the bridge. I know the capacity that is there to make tyranny total in America, and we must see to it that this agency and all agencies that possess this technology operate within the law and under proper supervision so that we never cross over that abyss. That is the abyss from which there is no return.
THIS IS WHAT PRESIDENT JFK WARNED US ABOUT AND WHAT PRESIDENT TRUMP IS FIGHTING TO EXPOSE AND DISMANTLE. THIS IS WHY THERE IS SUCH A HARD PROPAGANDA CAMPAIGN BEING DIRECTED AT HIM BY THE DEMONRATS AND THE MEDIA. They want control over this power to enslave us all to a totalitarian socialist society where they remain in power and we are their slaves. It is why they want our GUNS so badly.
R. Emmett Tyrrell, Jr., editor of the conservative magazine The American Spectator, wrote that the committee “betrayed CIA agents and operations.” The committee had not received names, so had none to release, as confirmed by later CIA director George H. W. Bush. However, Senator Jim McClure used the allegation in the 1980 election, when Church was defeated.
The Committee’s work has more recently been criticized after the September 11 attacks, for leading to legislation reducing the ability of the CIA to gather human intelligence. In response to such criticism, the chief counsel of the committee, Frederick A.O. Schwarz Jr., retorted with a book co-authored by Aziz Z. Huq, denouncing the Bush administration’s use of 9/11 to make “monarchist claims” that are “unprecedented on this side of the North Atlantic”.
In September 2006, the University of Kentucky hosted a forum called “Who’s Watching the Spies? Intelligence Activities and the Rights of Americans,” bringing together two Democratic committee members, former Vice President of the United States Walter Mondale and former U.S. Senator Walter “Dee” Huddleston of Kentucky, and Schwarz to discuss the committee’s work, its historical impact, and how it pertains to today’s society.
1994 U.S. General Accounting Office report
The U.S. General Accounting Office issued a report on September 28, 1994, which stated that between 1940 and 1974, DOD and other national security agencies studied thousands of human subjects in tests and experiments involving hazardous substances.
The quote from the study:
Working with the CIA, the Department of Defense gave hallucinogenic drugs to thousands of “volunteer” soldiers in the 1950’s and 1960’s. In addition to LSD, the Army also tested quinuclidinyl benzilate, a hallucinogen code-named BZ. (Note 37) Many of these tests were conducted under the so-called MK ULTRA program, established to counter perceived Soviet and Chinese advances in brainwashing techniques. Between 1953 and 1964, the program consisted of 149 projects involving drug testing and other studies on unwitting human subjects.
Given the CIA’s purposeful destruction of most records, its failure to follow informed consent protocols with thousands of participants, the uncontrolled nature of the experiments, and the lack of follow-up data, the full impact of MK Ultra experiments, including deaths, may never be known.
Several known deaths have been associated with Project MKUltra, most notably that of Frank Olson. Olson, a United States Army biochemist and biological weaponsresearcher, was given LSD without his knowledge or consent in November, 1953, as part of a CIA experiment and committed suicide by jumping out of a window a week later. A CIA doctor assigned to monitor Olson claimed to have been asleep in another bed in a New York City hotel room when Olson exited the window and fell thirteen stories to his death. In 1953, Olson’s death was described as a suicide that had occurred during a severe psychotic episode. The CIA’s own internal investigation concluded that the head of MK Ultra, CIA chemist Sidney Gottlieb, had conducted the LSD experiment with Olson’s prior knowledge, although neither Olson nor the other men taking part in the experiment were informed as to the exact nature of the drug until some 20 minutes after its ingestion. The report further suggested that Gottlieb was nonetheless due a reprimand, as he had failed to take into account Olson’s already-diagnosed suicidal tendencies, which might have been exacerbated by the LSD.
The Olson family disputes the official version of events. They maintain that Frank Olson was murdered because, especially in the aftermath of his LSD experience, he had become a security risk who might divulge state secrets associated with highly classified CIA programs, about many of which he had direct personal knowledge. A few days before his death, Frank Olson quit his position as acting chief of the Special Operations Division at Detrick, Maryland (later Fort Detrick) because of a severe moral crisis concerning the nature of his biological weapons research. Among Olson’s concerns were the development of assassination materials used by the CIA, the CIA’s use of biological warfare materials in covert operations, experimentation with biological weapons in populated areas, collaboration with former Nazi scientists under Operation Paperclip, LSD mind-control research, and the use of psychoactive drugs during “terminal” interrogations under a program code-named Project ARTICHOKE. Later forensic evidence conflicted with the official version of events; when Olson’s body was exhumed in 1994, cranial injuries indicated that Olson had been knocked unconscious before he exited the window. The medical examiner termed Olson’s death a “homicide”. In 1975, Olson’s family received a $750,000 settlement from the U.S. government and formal apologies from President Gerald Ford and CIA Director William Colby, though their apologies were limited to informed consent issues concerning Olson’s ingestion of LSD. On 28 November 2012, the Olson family filed suit against the U.S. federal government for the wrongful death of Frank Olson.
A 2010 book by H. P. Albarelli Jr. alleged that the 1951 Pont-Saint-Esprit mass poisoning was part of MK DELTA, that Olson was involved in that event, and that he was eventually murdered by the CIA. However, academic sources attribute the incident to ergot poisoning through a local bakery.
Legal issues involving informed consent
The revelations about the CIA and the Army prompted a number of subjects or their survivors to file lawsuits against the federal government for conducting experiments without informed consent. Although the government aggressively, and sometimes successfully, sought to avoid legal liability, several plaintiffs did receive compensation through court order, out-of-court settlement, or acts of Congress. Frank Olson’s family received $750,000 by a special act of Congress, and both President Ford and CIA director William Colby met with Olson’s family to apologize publicly.
Previously, the CIA and the Army had actively and successfully sought to withhold incriminating information, even as they secretly provided compensation to the families. One subject of Army drug experimentation, James Stanley, an Army sergeant, brought an important, albeit unsuccessful, suit. The government argued that Stanley was barred from suing under a legal doctrine—known as the Feres doctrine, after a 1950 Supreme Court case, Feres v. United States—that prohibits members of the Armed Forces from suing the government for any harms that were inflicted “incident to service.”
In 1987, the Supreme Court affirmed this defense in a 5–4 decision that dismissed Stanley’s case: United States v. Stanley. The majority argued that “a test for liability that depends on the extent to which particular suits would call into question military discipline and decision making would itself require judicial inquiry into, and hence intrusion upon, military matters.” In dissent, Justice William Brennan argued that the need to preserve military discipline should not protect the government from liability and punishment for serious violations of constitutional rights:
The medical trials at Nuremberg in 1947 deeply impressed upon the world that experimentation with unknowing human subjects is morally and legally unacceptable. The United States Military Tribunal established the Nuremberg Code as a standard against which to judge German scientists who experimented with human subjects… . [In defiance of this principle, military intelligence officials … began surreptitiously testing chemical and biological materials, including LSD].
Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, writing a separate dissent, stated:
No judicially crafted rule should insulate from liability the involuntary and unknowing human experimentation alleged to have occurred in this case. Indeed, as Justice Brennan observes, the United States played an instrumental role in the criminal prosecution of Nazi officials who experimented with human subjects during the Second World War, and the standards that the Nuremberg Military Tribunals developed to judge the behavior of the defendants stated that the ‘voluntary consent of the human subject is absolutely essential … to satisfy moral, ethical, and legal concepts.’ If this principle is violated, the very least that society can do is to see that the victims are compensated, as best they can be, by the perpetrators.
In another lawsuit, Wayne Ritchie, a former United States Marshal, after hearing about the project’s existence in 1990, alleged the CIA laced his food or drink with LSD at a 1957 Christmas party which resulted in his attempting to commit a robbery at a bar and his subsequent arrest. While the government admitted it was, at that time, drugging people without their consent, U.S. District Judge Marilyn Hall Patel found Ritchie could not prove he was one of the victims of MK Ultra or that LSD caused his robbery attempt and dismissed the case in 2007.
- Harold Alexander Abramson
- Donald Ewen Cameron
- José Manuel Rodriguez Delgado
- Sidney Gottlieb
- Harris Isbell[
- Henry Murray
- Louis Jolyon West
- Ken Kesey, author of One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, volunteered for MK Ultra experiments involving LSD and other psychedelic drugs at the Veterans Administration Hospital in Menlo Park while he was a student at nearby Stanford University. Kesey’s experiences while under the influence of LSD inspired him to promote the drug outside the context of the MK Ultra experiments, which influenced the early development of hippie culture.
- Robert Hunter is an American lyricist, singer-songwriter, translator, and poet, best known for his association with Jerry Garcia and the Grateful Dead. Along with Ken Kesey, Hunter was an early volunteer MK Ultra test subject at Stanford University. Stanford test subjects were paid to take LSD, psilocybin, and mescaline, then report on their experiences. These experiences were creatively formative for Hunter: Sit back picture yourself swooping up a shell of purple with foam crests of crystal drops soft nigh they fall unto the sea of morning creep-very-softly mist … and then sort of cascade tinkley-bell-like (must I take you by the hand, every so slowly type) and then conglomerate suddenly into a peal of silver vibrant uncomprehendingly, blood singingly, joyously resounding bells … By my faith if this be insanity, then for the love of God permit me to remain insane.
- Boston mobster James “Whitey” Bulger volunteered for testing while in prison in Atlanta in 1957.
- Ted Kaczynski, a domestic terrorist known as the Unabomber was a subject of MK ULTRA. As a sophomore at Harvard, Kaczynski participated in a study described by author Alton Chase as a “purposely brutalizing psychological experiment”, led by Harvard psychologist Henry Murray. In total, Kaczynski spent 200 hours as part of the study.
- Lawrence Teeter was the attorney for Sirhan Sirhan who assassinated Robert F. Kennedy, and he believed that Sirhan was “operating under MK-ULTRA mind control techniques”.
- American fashion model and radio host Candy Jones claimed to have been a victim of mind control in the 1960’s.
YES, THE CIA GAVE LSD AND OTHER DRUGS TO COLLEGE STUDENTS AND PAID THEM TO TAKE IT AND GET OTHERS TO TAKE IT. THEY ALSO GAVE THE DRUGS TO STUDENTS WHO WERE UNAWARE AND NEVER KNEW HOW THEY GOT IT. IN SHORT, THE CIA STARTED THE DRUG, HIPPIE CULTURE MOVEMENT TO DESTROY AMERICAN VALUES AND PROMOTE THE DEPENDENCY ON GOVERNMENT.
THIS WAS AND IS A DIRECT VIOLATION OF ALL AMERICANS CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS AND ALSO IS A VIOLATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS UNDER THE U.N. CHARTER. THIS DEMONSTRATES THE WILLFULNESS OF UNCONTROLLED GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS TO VIOLATE ALL LAWS, RIGHTS, FREEDOMS, AND LIVELY HOOD OF HUMAN BEINGS AND CITIZENS.
At his retirement in 1972, Gottlieb dismissed his entire effort for the CIA’s MK Ultra program as useless. The CIA insists that MK Ultra-type experiments have been abandoned, although investigative journalist Elizabeth Nickson (whose mother had been a subject) claims that they continue today under a different set of acronyms. Victor Marchetti, who had held several positions at the CIA before resigning in 1969, stated in 1992 that the CIA routinely conducted disinformation campaigns and that CIA mind control research continued. He called the claim that the program had been abandoned a cover story.
In popular culture
MK Ultra plays a part in many conspiracy theories due to its nature and the destruction of most records.
- Pineapple Express depicts Project MKULTRA in the intro scene, although it is portrayed as taking place in 1937.
- Mr. Right (the 2015 US film) Hopper (portrayed by Tim Roth) mentions the CIA ULTRA program (at 27 minutes 15 seconds) as part of the foundation to the main character’s motives and backstory.
- The Killing Room invokes Project MKULTRA as the foundation to the base plot.
- The Banshee Chapter is largely based around MKULTRA.
- Jacob’s Ladder alludes to Project MKULTRA throughout the movie.
- The 1997 film Conspiracy Theory Project MKULTRA is referred to by Dr. Jonas (Patrick Stewart) who says he headed the project. Also, the protagonist, Jerry (Mel Gibson) is reported by Dr. Jonas to be a test subject of Project MKULTRA.
- In American Ultra (2015), Jesse Eisenberg plays a stoner slacker who discovers he is the sole survivor of the “Ultra” program, which turned him into the ultimate assassin.
- The Jason Bourne books and films starring Matt Damon, written by Robert Ludlum, are all based on MKULTRA techniques, which turned him into the ultimate assassin.
- The film The Men Who Stare At Goats is based on the MKULTRA experiments. It is based on a book by Jon Ronson and its accompanying TV series.
- 2006 movie Shadow Man starring Steven Seagal has a plot that revolves around MK Ultra.
- Marvin Boggs (played by John Malkovich) in the films RED (2010) and RED 2 (2013) had unknowingly been provided daily doses of LSD over a period of 11 years, making him highly paranoid, echoing the actions of MK ULTRA.
- Captain America: The Winter Soldier (the 2014 US film) Sebastian Stan portrays Bucky Barnes who is subjected to MK Ultra-like mind control experiments by the Nazis AKA “Hydra” to turn him into the ultimate assassin, “The Winter Soldier”.
- Chop Chop Chang: Operation C.H.I.M.P depicts a fictional mind control program inspired by MK Ultra.
- Mind Control: MK Ultra is a documentary directed by Bryan Law.
- The 1998 CBC miniseries The Sleep Room dramatizes brainwashing experiments funded by MK Ultra that were performed on Canadian mental patients in the 1950’s and 60’s, and their subsequent efforts to sue the CIA.
- BYU tv’s drama Granite Flats is a fictional dramatization of the implementation of MK Ultra by a military hospital in Colorado.
- In season 2, episode 19 of Bones, “Spaceman in a Crater”, Jack Hodgins mentions that Frank Olson was an unwitting participant and committed suicide, but that an exhumation 45 years later proved he was murdered.
- In an episode of ABC’s Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., “The Things We Bury“, one of the characters makes a reference to MK Ultra.
- In season 2, episode 5 of Fringe, “Dream Logic“, Walter Bishop briefly mentions his involvement with MK Ultra.
- In season 6, episode 7 of Archer, “Nellis”, Archer briefly mentions MK Ultra while bluffing his way into Area 51; in season 7, episode 8, “Liquid Lunch”, the program is explained to Archer’s colleagues.
- In episode “Via Negativa” from the eighth season of The X-Files, The Lone Gunmen mention MK Ultra while discussing a case with Agent Doggett.
- In The X-Files third-season episode “Jose Chung’s From Outer Space“, Jose Chung mentions the experiments as an example of the powerful effect “mere words” can have over the human mind.
- In Alphas, events imply that the Alphas program had its starts in the MK Ultra program, and Dr. Rosen has access to certain files from the MK Ultra project.
- In season 3, episode 10 of NUMB3RS, Don Eppes investigates the assassinations of a Senator and a Psychiatrist with links to MK Ultra.
- In the fourth episode of Season 2 of The Blacklist, Cooper mentions Project MK Ultra while talking to Elizabeth Keen. The entire episode is based on the premise of using genetic predisposition to make someone commit an act that they most likely would not have done in the first place.
- In season 1 of Stranger Things, the antagonist Dr. Martin Brenner is discovered to have been involved in MK Ultra. One of the young protagonists, Eleven, was raised in a government laboratory after being born to an MK Ultra test subject.
- In Season 5, Episode 10 of The West Wing, the White House press secretary is questioned by a reporter about mind control, leading her to investigate MK Ultra and the budgetary allocations of DARPA for the project.
- Netflix original series Manhunt: Unabomber portrays the psychological torture of 16-year-old Harvard student Theodore Kaczynski by MK Ultra researchers. Kaczynski was the perpetrator of serial bombings over a 17-year period and became known as the Unabomber.
- The 2017 Netflix documentary re-enactment mini-series Wormwood tells the story of Frank Olson and MK Ultra through the eyes of his son, Eric.
- The song, “MK Ultra“, by British band Muse makes direct reference to this project in the title and uses lyrics to convey the effects of the project directly on a subject.
- Lyrics of “Look … The Sun is Rising”, the opening track to The Flaming Lips‘ 2013 album The Terror, narrate “a little spaceship” as a mechanism for MKUltra mind control.
- The song, “The 4th Branch” by rapper Immortal Technique from his album Revolutionary Volume 2, compares modern media to MKUltra, “controlling your brain”.
- The songs, “US Government” and “MK Ultra” by Black Rebel Motorcycle Club make direct reference to the project, as well as more oblique references in the lyrics.
- The Providence, Rhode Island-based hardcore punk band Violent Sons named a song “MK Ultra” on their 2013 full-length, Nothing as It Seems.
- The song, “MK Ultra”, by progressive metal band Periphery makes direct reference to the project in the title and speaks of the abuse children received from the CIA during the experiments.
- Olympia-based band Unwound recorded a song named “Mkultra” on both theA Single History: 1991–1997 and Rat Conspiracy compilations.
- The song “They. Resurrect. Over. New.” by rapper Lupe Fiasco from his 2015 album Tetsuo & Youth mentions MKUltra.
- The album Chemistry of Consciousness by heavy metal band Toxic Holocaust contains several references to the experiments, including a song titled “Mk ultra”.
- On metal band Arsonists Get All the Girls‘ 2013 album, Listen to the Color, a song references the program through title and lyrics called “MK-ULTRA: Psychotropic Puppets”. Another song of the album is titled “MK-DELTA: Glorified Killers”.
- The Stephen King book Firestarter is based on a fictionalized version of the MK Ultra experiments, and the protagonists all acquire powers as a result of the experimentation.
- Alan Glynn, the Irish novelist, uses Project MK Ultra as part of the background for his plot in Limitless (also a film) and Paradime (2016).
- The horror game Outlast makes several major references to MK Ultra and implies that the experiments on the asylum inmates in the game are either a part of or associated with the program.
- Project MK Ultra is mentioned in Call Of Duty: Black Ops as the Soviet Union’s attempt to turn protagonist Alex Mason into a Soviet sleeper agent with orders to assassinate President Kennedy. Mason’s handler, CIA agent Jason Hudson, even mentions it when telling Mason he had been brainwashed by the Soviets.
- The manga Lost+Brain mentions MK Ultra when speaking about using hypnosis to control the country.
- Science Fiction/Fantasy novel Omens by Kelley Armstrong uses MK Ultra as a driving portion of its plot.
- The game Manhunt 2 is based around “The Pickman Project” which has several similarities to MK Ultra and it is likely it was directly inspired by it.
- A cannabis strain called MK Ultra has been developed by T.H.Seeds of Amsterdam.
- Project MK Ultra is mentioned in the 2016 video game Mafia III. It is mentioned by one of the characters, an ex-CIA agent John Donovan.
- In the broadway musical under the title of “We Will Rock You” MK Ultra is referred to as the Bohemians are brainwashed and experimented on to become vegetables.
- The online, anonymously-written science fiction and horror story 9MOTHER9HORSE9EYES9 borrows from and refers to the MK Ultra project directly.
- The fictitious video game known as Polybius had spread around as an urban myth in 1981. Many of the key points of Polybius allude to government control testing and other “men in black” type figures, suggesting Polybius took inspiration from project MK Ultra at the time of its creation.
- CIA activities in the United States
- Operation Midnight Climax
- Project ARTICHOKE
- Human experimentation in North Korea
- Human radiation experiments
- Human rights violations by the CIA
- Nazi human experimentation
- Poison laboratory of the Soviet secret services
- Unethical human experimentation in the United States
- Unit 731
DO YOU STILL FEEL SAFE HAVING VOICE ACTIVATED DEVICES ALL AROUND YOU? EVERYTHING YOU SAY IS BEING RECORDED AND USED AGAINST YOU, EVEN IN THE PRIVACY OF YOUR OWN HOME.