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CIA Mind-Control Operations and THE SYNDROME

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CIA Mind-Control Operations and THE SYNDROME

[Editor's Note: The following article was forwarded to John Case by Susan Ford (Brice Taylor) <sueford@earthlink.net>. She prefaced the story with following note: "I have highlighted and emphasized portions of this important article. The infamous Tavistock Institute, which operates under the aegis of the Royal Institute of International Affairs in Great Britain, is the brainchild and executor for the CIA regarding mind control experimentation and its implementation." Ken Adachi]

By John Case


June 13, 2001

THE SYNDROME is a thriller driven by a secret culled from the deepest recesses of the Cold War. It is a secret that encompasses an illicit program of human experimentation, using pain, drugs and hypnosis to create the perfect assassin. So sensitive was this program that only a handful of people have ever been privy to more than a small part of it. The activity's existence was first hinted at by the Rockefeller Commission in a 1974 report on domestic CIA operations. The Commission devoted just two sentences to the program, whose documentary record had been destroyed by an outgoing CIA Director. Despite that Director's attempt to impose institutional amnesia on the Agency he'd headed, seven boxes of financial documents were later found in a dusty cabinet at the Agency's headquarters in Langley, Virginia.

The paper-trail contained within those boxes wound its way through a complex of medical institutes, hospitals and foundations that had given cover to a behavioral modification program in which human guinea pigs had been "tested to destruction" without their knowledge or consent.

Beyond those seven boxes, no other records are known to exist. Even so, the New York District Attorney's office continues to seek homicide indictments against CIA officers who are believed to have murdered a key scientist in the program.

Though few records of its existence remain, the program is known to have begun during World War II, when the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) attempted to develop "a truth drug" in an effort to elicit information from recalcitrant Prisoners of War. The subjects of these earliest experiments were captured Axis soldiers, and American GIs facing court-martial for various crimes.

When the war came to an end, the program did not. Instead, it took a strange turn--and gained momentum. What had been a search for a truth-drug morphed into a mind-control program whose purpose was to create a murderous automaton whose memory could be "edited" by his handlers at headquarters.

The need for an assassination "utility" of this kind had been articulated a few years earlier by a professor of anthropology at Harvard, a former OSS operative who was himself implicated in World War II assassination plots. This was the late Carleton Coon who, in an after-action report to OSS chief "Wild Bill" Donovan, wrote,

"...we cannot be sure that the clear and objective scholars who study the existing social systems and draw up the blueprints for a society to suit our technology will always be heard, or that their plans will be put into operation. We can almost be sure that this will not be the case. Therefore some other power, some third class of individuals aside from the leaders and the scholars must exist, and this third class must have the task of thwarting mistakes, diagnosing areas of potential world disequilibrium, and nipping the causes of potential disturbances in the bud. There must be a body of men whose task it is to throw out the rotten apples as soon as the first spots of decay appear. A body of this nature must exist undercover. It must either be a power unto itself, or be given the broadest discretionary powers by the highest human authorities."

With the outbreak of the Korean War, Coon's proposal seems to have been melded with the truth-drug investigations then under way, and given a jump-start. The Pentagon and the CIA arranged for the publication of articles about "communist brainwashing" in popular magazines such as The Reader's Digest and Saturday Evening Post. The message was explicit: there was a "mind-control gap."

This created a groundswell of political support for the Agency's decision to embark upon a full-fledged "mind-control" program of its own. Beginning in 1952, the CIA began to work with the Special Operations Division of the Army's biological research center at Fort Detrick, studying the covert use of chemical and biological weapons. Among the drugs studied was LSD.

The subjects in these experiments were people on the margins of society. They included the inmates of prisons and mental institutions, as well as homeless alcoholics on Skid Row. Those who espoused unpopular political views or whose lifestyle was perceived as immoral were also considered "fair game"--and so became unwitting guinea pigs in the spooks' quest to create a "Manchurian Candidate."

Occasionally, the Agency experimented on its own--and, sometimes, with terrible consequences. In 1954, Dr. Frank Olson was invited to a gathering at a CIA retreat near Deep Creek Lake, Maryland. At that gathering, we are told that Olsen and nine other people were given high doses of LSD without their knowledge. By all accounts, Olson's reaction was negative in the extreme. Plunged into severe depression, he suffered hallucinations for days, and was taken to see a therapist in New York. While there, and under the most mysterious circumstances, he fell to his death from an upper-story window of the Statler Hotel.

Though Olsen's death was pronounced a suicide, the case has since been re-opened, and is now under investigation by the New York District Attorney's office.

Meanwhile, the Agency forged ahead. Fearful of adverse publicity from incidents such as the one that claimed Olsen's life, the CIA shifted many of its operations to the West Coast and abroad. One such activity involved safe-houses in New York and Washington, where prostitutes were paid to bring clients. "Fair game," the clients would be dosed with drugs, and their behavior observed by CIA operatives sitting behind two-way mirrors.

With Olsen's death, these and other operations were moved to San Francisco, where the fallout from such activities could be more easily controlled. Still other experiments were funded abroad.

At McGill University in Montreal, Dr. Ewen Cameron carried out a series of experiments for the CIA, effectively turning his patients into "vegetables." The process, which Cameron called "depatterning," relied upon intensive electroshocks, followed by 30-60 days of drug-induced sleep, to destroy existing patterns of behavior. In the end, the patient would become a tabula rasa, her mind wiped clean and empty.

Elsewhere, scientists such as Maitland Baldwin agreed to go one step further, volunteering to carry out "terminal experiments" in sensory deprivation. Patients-subjects-victims would be buried alive for an "indefinite" period in stimulus-free "boxes." In effect, they would become the CIA's very own zombies.

Behind the codewords, BLUEBIRD and PANDORA and ARTICHOKE, the CIA and its sister agencies experimented upon a large and diverse group of subjects, many of whom suffered terribly. Using drugs and hypnosis, microwaves and radiation, the experimenters sought ways to affect moods, impose "selective amnesia," create multiple personalities, induce trance-states by rapid and remote means, and generate so-called "screen memories."

This last involved the creation of false "memories" as a way of blocking genuine ones. A key plot-point in THE SYNDROME, it is also a way to impel an agent to commit suicide when his usefulness is at an end.

The mind-control program initiated by the CIA in the 1950s was officially discontinued in the 1960s, though many critics of the Agency insist that the most "promising" research continues under other auspices, at home and abroad. This book--THE SYNDROME--is about that.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Copyright© 2001 by John Case. Published online by permission of Ballantine, a division of Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.

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Even Jim Hougan has the Coon quote on the front page of his website...

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Wild Bill Donovan, Admiral Darlan and Carleton S. Coon...

When Donovan put forth this plan to Roosevelt, a storm of protest broke about his head from U.S. military leaders. General Sherman Miles, head of the Army Intelligence (G-2) wrote to Chief of Staff, General George C. Marshall that he considered the formation of a new super-intelligence agency "very disadvantageous, if not calamitous." J. Edgar Hoover of the FBI was enraged at the thought that Donovan might create an agency competitive with the FBI. He personally went to Roosevelt to complain about the idea.

Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson wrote in his diary that Hoover "goes to the White House… and poisons the mind of the President" about Donovan's plans. General Marshall noted Hoover's incessant badgering of Roosevelt to discard any notion of activating Donovan's plan, calling the FBI Director "very childish," "petulant," and "more of a spoiled child than a responsible officer."

Virginia Hall of Special Operations Branch receiving the Distinguished Service Cross from General Donovan, September 1945.

Actually, Hoover had planned to have just such an intelligence agency spring from his own FBI domain, one in which he would create a worldwide system of "legal attachés" (FBI officers) in every U.S. embassy, consulate and legation. As it was, when the OSS came into existence over his vitriolic objections, Hoover had to be content with getting all areas of the Western Hemisphere only as his absolute jurisdiction in gathering information, although the FBI was ordered to cooperate with the OSS (and its successor, the CIA), providing all intelligence it had on hand in those areas to the OSS when requested to do so.

This was easier said than done, particularly when dealing with the possessive, self-aggrandizing Hoover who became incensed at anyone who thought to enter the criminal investigation or intelligence fields which he believed were his private fiefdoms. He remained the eternal foe of Donovan's for his invasion into the intelligence field, albeit much of the FBI's early work in the area was woefully incompetent, inept and non-productive. Hoover was so envious of any OSS activity that he made ridiculous accusations against Donovan.

In 1942, Hoover carped that Donovan had more than ninety OSS agents operating in South America when Donovan had but one and that agent had been given permission to pick up some papers in Mexico by the New York branch of the FBI. Hoover had his agents put together dossiers on all of those who might exercise authority over him, from Presidents to members of Congress, from cabinet members to agency directors. He maintained a very large file on William Joseph Donovan that was crammed with rumor and gossip but not a single indictment of misbehavior.

In an article appearing in a 1941 edition of Collier's Magazine, an FBI spokesman reassured citizens that the FBI was cooperating with the OSS by sending it all the intelligence it had collected. Said the FBI agent in a snide fashion: "Donovan knows everything we know except what we know about Donovan." This, of course, clearly implied that the FBI was maintaining a file on Donovan. Hoover nervously followed up this article by sending a letter to Donovan in which he flatly denied that the FBI maintained a dossier on the OSS director. This was a lie, but J. Edgar Hoover's entire career was pockmarked with inconsistencies, misrepresentations and outright lies. Such conduct was his hallmark.

General Donovan addressing Jedburghs in England, 1944.

Roosevelt was very much in favor of a super-intelligence agency, but, at first, he thought to name his boyhood chum, Vincent Astor to head such an agency. The wealthy Astor had been Roosevelt's social spy in Washington for years, reporting the gossip and rumor of cocktail parties and fetes. He was totally unqualified for such a position. Donovan, on the other hand, was one of the few Americans who had a perfect grasp of world matters, and the best intelligence system in the world at that time, SIS. He had the support of Frank Knox, Secretary of the Treasury Henry Morganthau, Jr., and Winston Churchill, along with all of the leading British intelligence chiefs (with the exception of the venomously anti-American Claude Dansey).

Donovan had already submitted his concepts of the proposed intelligence agency. He insisted that "intelligence operations should not be controlled by party exigencies. It is one of the most vital means of national defense. As such someone appointed by the President, directly responsible to him and no one else should head it. It should have a fund solely for the purpose of investigation and the expenditures under this fund should be secret and made solely at the discretion of the President." With this statement, Donovan had laid the cornerstone idea for not only the OSS but also the CIA that was to follow.

The organization Donovan envisioned came into being as the Office of Coordinator of Information (COI) on June 18, 1941, when Roosevelt announced its formation and Donovan at its head. Donovan recruited agents and workers for this new service from the Ivy League, Wall Street and media. His first lieutenant, so to speak, was playwright Robert E. Sherwood, who was a friend of Donovan's. Sherwood was made head of propaganda arm of the new organization, called Foreign Information Service (FIS) and large offices in New York were rented. Within a year more than 800 journalists, writers and broadcasters were employed by FIS.

Another branch of the COI, the Research and Analysis department, had as its chief recruiter Archibald MacLeish. He drew heavily from the Academy and from the field of journalism. James P. Warburg, the New York banker, joined this staff, as did Wallace Deuel, correspondent for the Chicago Daily News. Donovan recruited Thomas A. Morgan from the Sperry Corporation; James Roosevelt, one of the President's sons; Estelle Frankfurter, sister of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Felix Frankfurter; Atherton C. Richards, who owned a goodly portion of Hawaii; film director John Ford and film producer Mirian C. Cooper.

Letter from William Donovan to returning OSS personnel

Six months after the U.S. went to war with the Axis Powers, the COI came under the supervision of the Joint Chiefs of Staff on June 13, 1942, and its name was changed to the Office of Strategic Services (OSS). As Roosevelt had warned Donovan, the military commanders tried to absorb the various branches of the OSS but Donovan was able to resist such moves and kept his organization intact and under his direct control. Before the OSS was disbanded, more than 60,000 persons would be employed in its many services.

Many OSS agents performed the same duties as the British Special Operations Executive (SOE), going behind enemy lines to work with underground and resistance fighters, in Europe, the Middle East and throughout Asia and the Pacific. OSS agents swarmed into French North Africa in advance of the Allied invasion, preparing the way by meeting with Vichy French officers and convincing many to welcome rather than resist the Allies.

One of those resisting OSS overtures was French Admiral Jean Darlan. He had earlier told the Allies that if they appeared with a well-equipped force of 500,000 men, he would abandon Vichy and side with them. When learning that the Allies were headed for Algiers, Darlan did just the opposite, ordering his men to resist. The embarrassing situation was settled when Fernand Bonnier de la Chapelle, shot and killed Darlan in his offices on December 24,1942.

An investigation by French officials soon had it that the OSS was behind the assassination. Suspicion was cast upon William A. Eddy, OSS chief in Algiers, and his right-hand man, Carleton S. Coon whose job it was to train Free French fighters in the ways of sabotage. These Frenchmen belonged to a paramilitary organization called Corps Franc. Bonnier, Darlan's assassin, had been a member of the Corps Franc. Though neither OSS man was accused openly of being involved with Bonnier's murder of Darlan, both quickly left Algiers. Coon went to work with a British SOE operation in Tunisia, using the identity of a British officer who had recently been killed. When he returned to the U.S. he met with Donovan, submitting a report that urged political assassination as an OSS procedure, one that was not adopted.

Crew members of a B-24 bomber flown by OSS on special missions over Central Europe pose beside their plane at Area T.

Though accusations were flung about, the assassination of Admiral Darlan was never proven to be an OSS-sponsored act. Bonnier, who was a Gaulist and monarchist, had apparently acted out of his own accord. At the same time the North African invasions took place, Donovan's best spymaster, Allen Dulles, arrived in Bern, Switzerland (with two un-pressed suits and a $1 million letter of credit) to organize OSS operations there. He was to provide invaluable information on military and political operations inside Italy and Germany.

Dulles was indirectly in touch with Germany's spymaster, Admiral Wilhelm Canaris, and he established a spy network equal to and eventually superior than the long-standing British networks headquartered in Switzerland. The American spymaster was also in contact with most of those inside Germany's underground, euphemistically called the Black Orchestra. It was Dulles who accepted Fritz Kolbe as a genuine top spy inside of Germany after the British spymaster Claude Dansey denounced Kolbe as a Nazi "plant." Kolbe proved to be the most important German spy working for the Allies during World War II.

At the same time that Donovan was supervising worldwide OSS operations behind enemy lines, operations in neutral countries such as Switzerland, Portugal, Sweden, he was also directing a host of operatives in Washington, D.C. who spied upon the embassies of many countries who were reportedly neutral. Few persons could devote as much time, sixteen hours a day, to his exhausting tasks, as did Donovan, then in his sixties. Moreover, he had to contend at the same time with sniping from military intelligence chiefs such as the vainglorious, back-shooting General George Veazey Strong, head of Army Intelligence and General Marshall's handpicked hatchet man.

This OSS "Beano" grenade exploded upon impact.

This uniform button is really a compass.

Strong was forever writing sarcastic and demeaning memos about Donovan and the OSS He had at his disposal, where the OSS did not, the military intelligence services of Magic, the American computerized system of intelligence analysis which was to break the Japanese codes, and Ultra, the British counterpart, which had broken the German codes almost at the beginning of World War II and continued to superbly analyze information through its computer system Colossus, developed toward the end of the war.

To discredit OSS efforts at every opportunity (and waste valuable time doing it), Strong compared Donovan's intelligence data with that produced by Magic and Ultra to show OSS failings. He could not, however, replace the human factor which was the hub of OSS operations and which produced, in the end, raw information from which genuine high-level intelligence was gleaned.

Donovan continued to be personally on hand to oversee many OSS operations. He was present at the Allied invasion of Sicily and at the OSS operations around Bari, Italy. He was present at the Normandy invasion in 1944 and closely supervised his massive OSS operations carried out behind German lines shortly before the Allies landed. Donovan's agents, many of them spectacular heroes, felt that they could do no less than "the chief." One of these was the courageous Moe Berg, former baseball player, who parachuted into Nazi-occupied Yugoslavia for the OSS to meet with Yugoslavian partisan Tito and report that the Allies should support the guerrilla leader which they did.

The easily concealed ‘Liberator’ pistol.

Caltrops were designed to puncture tires.

The OSS had proven its worth countless times over during World War II, and, given the Communist aims at the end of that conflict, Roosevelt believed that there was a future for the organization in the years to come. On October 31, 1944, he sent a note to Donovan, asking that he provide a report on an American intelligence agency in the postwar period. Donovan drew up a plan for a revamped OSS to continue its intelligence gathering duties and submitted this to Roosevelt. The President's death the following year, however, delayed these plans.

When President Harry S. Truman came to power, he believed that there was no need to have a world-wide American spy network now that the war was over, a view he would later change when confronted with the Russian menace. Truman disbanded the OSS on September 20, 1945, a month after the Japanese surrender and the official end of the war. Donovan retired a major general.

The OSS went silently out of business but by the time of its demise, it had earned the respect of intelligence communities throughout the world. Of its 16,000 agents and subagents in the combat zones, more than 2,000 of them had won medals for gallantry. Donovan had lost only 143 men and women. About 300 had been captured and imprisoned. It was a remarkable record of limited casualties, far many less than Donovan had lost in World War I. Donovan's personal contribution was vast, and, as usual, valiant.

A deck of playing cards conceal a map which would be revealed when the top layer was soaked off.

Donovan retired to private life but helped to create the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) in 1947. He served as Ambassador to Thailand in 1953-54 before going into permanent retirement. In January 1959, a huge portrait of Donovan was hung in the lobby of CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia. The oil painting showed an erect, commanding figure wearing the uniform of a major general, his chest bedecked with ribbons topped by the blue Congressional Medal of Honor. Donovan attended the ceremony. He was ill at the time; in fact, he was dying.

"Wild Bill" gazed at his portrait and suddenly his bent frame came to life. One report had it that "the bowed head came up, the jaw hardened, the sagging body stiffened to attention. Straight as a soldier, the general about-faced and strode down the corridor and through the foyer, and climbed without help into the car. He died a month later, on February 8, 1959. When President Dwight D. Eisenhower heard the news he remarked: "What a man! We have lost the last hero!"

1 posted on 01/19/2004 12:03:26 AM PST by SAMWolf

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To: snippy_about_it; PhilDragoo; Johnny Gage; Victoria Delsoul; Darksheare; Valin; bentfeather; radu; ..


Office of Strategic Services

U.S. Intelligence Service in World War II

(1942 - 1945)


Prior to World War II, America had no overall intelligence system beyond that operated by the armed forces. To coordinate secret information of all types at the start of U.S. involvement in World War II, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR), on January 13, 1942, created the Central Office of Information and placed General William "Wild Bill" Donovan at its head. Donovan, a World War I hero, quickly organized a vast network of experts in all intelligence fields. The organization's title was changed a short time later to the Office of Strategic Services, or OSS. The agency was responsible for espionage and sabotage in countries occupied by the Germans, Italians, and Japanese. It became legendary through the feats of its agents.

OSS Insignia WWII

Donovan was a tolerant spymaster, allowing his agents a great deal of freedom in accomplishing their missions. He encouraged inventiveness, even recklessness. More than 13,000 men and women worked for the OSS during World War II. They parachuted or were smuggled into all the countries occupied by the enemy to work closely with underground units, the SOE, and the SIS, as well as other national intelligence agencies operated by Allied countries.

One of the most effective operations conducted by the OSS was its preparations for the Allied landings in North Africa in 1942. OSS agents deftly negotiated terms with Vichy French officials to make sure that no French warships in African ports would be given over to the Germans who then occupied most of France. Moreover, they were able to place scores of agents in North Africa, ostensibly as monitors of foodstuffs going to refugees. These agents spent most of their time recording the movements of German warships and aircraft through the Mediterranean, while placating indecisive French officials and military commanders in preparation for the Allied landings.

When American and British troops did storm the beaches, OSS agents were waiting for them to lead them through minefields and direct them to the strategic objectives, OSS agents performed the same kind of incredible feats in preparation of the 1944 Normandy landings. The agency's agents were also effective in China, 1943-1945, working with Chiang Kai-shek in discovering weaknesses in the Japanese war machine.

In 1943, OSS agents, with Donovan's approval and without informing the Joint Chief of Staff, broke into the Japanese Embassy in Lisbon, Portugal, in search of documents and codebooks. They managed to obtain information that was, for the moment, valuable, but in the long run, this covert operation, which was quickly discerned by the Japanese, was devastating to U.S. military intelligence.

Though U.S. military intelligence had broken the Japanese "Ultra Code" in early 1942 and continued to monitor all important military and diplomatic messages throughout the war, the OSS break-in caused the Japanese to change its entire military attachß code, or that used by its intelligence service.

General Douglas MacArthur, Supreme Commander of South Pacific Operations, refused to allow the OSS to operate in his theater of war, preferring to rely upon the intelligence provided to him form the Army's G-2. The most truculent opponent facing the OSS was J. Edgar Hoover, chief of the FBI, who thought Donovan's OSS to be and upstart agency that might usurp his own power and the jurisdiction of the Bureau, even though FDR constantly assured Hoover that the OSS mandate was to operate outside the Western Hemisphere, a regulation that later applied to the CIA, which succeeded the OSS.

"To those of us here today, this is General Donovan's greatest legacy. He realized that a modern intelligence organization must not only provide today's tactical intelligence, it must provide tomorrow's long-term assessments. He recognized that an effective intelligence organization must not allow political pressures to influence its counsel. And, finally, he knew that no intelligence organization can succeed without recognizing the importance of people—people with discretion, ingenuity, loyalty, and a deep sense of responsibility to protect and promote American values."

>From DCI William Webster's remarks

at the dedication of the statue of

Gen. William J. Donovan,

CIA Headquarters, 28 October 1988.

British intelligence during World War II was, on the other hand, extremely cooperative with Donovan who visited SIS chiefs in 1940 to confer about his aims in establishing the OSS. He was shown the complete operations of the SOE (Special Operations Executive), which worked with the underground resistance fighters in occupied Europe. So impressed was Donovan that he modeled the OSS organization after the SOE. The British gave Donovan full cooperation, much more than might otherwise have been given in any other time, in that England was then desperate to draw the U.S. into the war against Germany.

At the end of World War II in 1945, President Harry Truman disbanded the OSS, believing that America had no more need of a super intelligence agency. This attitude quickly changed, however, when the Soviet Union was perceived to be a very real threat to the security of the U.S. and the world, causing the creation of another intelligence agency in 1946, the CIA.

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