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Ashton wrote:

An article of absorbing interest, to me at least, in light of continuing revelations concerning Pennsylvania, specifically Philadephia: 'Human guinea pigs' demand justice.

Thursday, May 30, 2002

'Human guinea pigs' demand justice

Ex-cons who participated in government experiments continue fight

By H.P. Albarelli Jr.

© 2002 WorldNetDaily.com

Nearly 300 former inmates of Philadelphia's Holmesburg Prison are demanding that the Philadelphia City Council launch an investigation into secret medical experiments conducted on them decades ago.

The experiments, which included radioactive isotopes, LSD, BZ, infectious diseases and a variety of drug-company products, were conducted in the now-closed county prison beginning in 1951 and lasting to 1974.

Sponsoring the experiments were the U.S. Army, the CIA and at least two large private corporations, Dow Chemical Co. and Johnson & Johnson. Many of the experiments were overseen by Dr. Albert Kligman, a renowned researcher and dermatologist from the University of Pennsylvania. Numerous military and federal government physicians worked alongside Kligman.

In February 1968, Kligman said that when he first visited Holmesburg Prison he viewed its inmate population much "like a farmer seeing a fertile field for the first time." Kligman also said that he considered the facility as "an anthropoid colony" ideal for conducting medical experiments.

On May 7, former Holmesburg inmates appeared before the Philadelphia City Council's Committee on Law and Government and graphically told of the injuries they believe had been inflicted upon them by callous government researchers.

Former prisoner Edward Anthony said, "They (researchers at the prison) destroyed my life." Anthony maintains that Army doctors working in the prison injected him with a "chemical warfare substance" so potent that it left him "spaced out" for months. The former inmates want the committee to recommend that the full Philadelphia Council authorize an investigation into the facts behind the 25-year experiments conducted at Holmesburg.

In November 1998, former Holmesburg inmates held street demonstrations in downtown Philadelphia seeking to draw attention to their use in experiments that they claim left them in need of long-term medical attention. The demonstrators maintained that they had been "lied to" about the dangers posed by experiments and demanded that they be given free medical treatment for experiment-related problems and financial compensation for pain and suffering.

The demonstrations were triggered by publication of the book "Acres of Skin" by Allen M. Hornblum, a criminal justice expert and professor at Temple University in Philadelphia. Hornblum's book detailed the history of the Holmesburg experiments which, according to Hornblum, were conducted on hundreds of "human guinea pigs who sacrificed their health and comfort to experimental medicine."

In October 2000, former inmates filed a lawsuit against the city of Philadelphia, the University of Pennsylvania, Dow Chemical, Johnson & Johnson and Kligman, alleging that they were falsely informed that the experiments were harmless to them. The suit, filed in Philadelphia's Common Pleas Court, seeks $50,000 in damages for each plaintiff and assurances that no-cost medical treatment will be made available to the former inmates.

Thomas M. Nocella, attorney for the inmates, said that many of the men were suffering from cancer, severe lung problems and other maladies.

"They received only a dollar or two a day to be used as subjects," said Nocella, "for drugs they knew nothing about." Nocella claimed there was no way the former prisoners could have given any reasoned informed consent for the tests when "many of the men couldn't read or comprehend the materials and forms placed in front of them."

After the lawsuit was filed, it was moved to federal court where a judge ruled the statute of limitations had expired 20 years prior. The suit is now before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third District, which is expected to hear oral arguments in July.

The Holmesburg Prison experiments were first reported nationally in the mid-1970s as part of a series of sensational and shocking revelations emerging from congressional investigations into questionable and illegal activities conducted by federal agencies. Many of the exposed activities were initiated by the CIA and the Army's Chemical Corps at Edgewood Arsenal and Fort Detrick, both in Maryland.

Prior to these revelations, occasionally in the 1960s, newspapers in the Philadelphia area featured human interest stories about Holmesburg inmates participating in tests for private company drug products. One September 1960 story in the Philadelphia Sun Bulletin stated, "The tests have been going on for about 12 years, but got a big shot in the arm when the University of Pennsylvania Hospital's dermatology department became interested in the prison." The story said that the university's Kligman, on a diagnostic visit to the facility, "was struck by the advantages of a prison as a testing ground." Said Kligman, "We know where [the test subjects] are, what they're doing, what they're eating; and if they're given pills six times a day, we know they're taken."

Another brief October 1962 article noted what may have been one of the Army's first experiments at the facility when it reported, "About 100 inmates of Holmesburg Prison will be voluntary subjects over the next year for an Army study of the effects of heat and humidity on the human skin." Continued the article, "A special climate chamber is now being built in one of the prison cells. The prisoner volunteers will be subjected to various climatic conditions and their reactions noted." Dr. Donald M. Pillsbury of the University of Pennsylvania, who oversaw the experiment with Kligman, said, "The Army is interested in this subject because more men were incapacitated in the South Pacific during World War II because of skin diseases than injury."

Amazingly, by 1963, Kligman was directing approximately 50 human experiments at Holmesburg involving nearly 1,000 inmates. One of these experiments was another Army-funded study on "the effects of poisonous vapors on the skin." The study included machines "that create radioactive isotopes" and dropping "small amounts" of highly toxic substances "on a limited area of [the inmate's] skin." At the time, Kligman proclaimed, "This is a program for national defense ... for once such vapors get through the skin they can destroy the nerve system and the central function of the brain."

In a 1968 Bulletin article, Kligman was quoted as saying that after the prison's experimental program expanded beyond dermatology studies to other areas of research, "We had an ethical problem. How much right do you have to cause risk to a prisoner in medical tests from which he has no direct benefit." Explained Kligman, "The tradition has been, from ethical or moral considerations, to test only those people who could draw some direct benefit from the testing."

The expanded Holmesburg program, Kligman continued, changed that tradition. "All the prisoner taking part in a test has is money," Kligman said. "We pay him to lend us his body for some time. But we pre-decide whether a test is dangerous, and the prisoner has to depend on our judgment."

Incredibly, early media attention to the Holmesburg experiments failed to set off alarms about the issues of informed consent and dangers posed. Under the Nuremberg Code of 1947 – an international agreement that the United States helped author and signed on to as a result of the horrendous experiments conducted by the Nazi physicians during the 1940s – it is "absolutely essential" that "voluntary consent" be given free of "any element of force, fraud, deceit, duress, over-reaching or other ulterior force of constraint or coercion." Further, the code requires that any experiment be so conducted as to avoid all unnecessary physical and mental suffering and injury.

In years subsequent to the Holmesburg experiments, and through to today, debate has been heated about the morality and legality of physicians conducting human experiments given that they are sworn to the Oath of Hippocrates. The essence of that oath is primum non nocere – "first do no harm." The oath also requires: "I will neither give a deadly drug to anybody if asked for it, nor will I make a suggestion to this effect."

Following the congressional revelations of the mid-'70s, a number of Philadelphia newspapers reported that suspicions were strong that the CIA had been involved with testing drugs at Holmesburg Prison. Eventually, over a period of about three years, reporters were able to piece together scattered declassified documents that verified intelligence agency involvement concealed through a secret financial arrangement with the Army's Special Operations Division at Fork Detrick. That agreement was code named MK/NAOMI. While details of the MK/NAOMI project at Holmesburg remain sketchy because the CIA maintained a policy of "not keeping written records of these experiments," glimpses of the project can be obtained through other declassified Army Chemical Corps documents. These documents reveal that primary among the CIA-funded activities at Holmesburg were experiments with several "mind-control drugs" used to determine "a dosage known as MED-50." This was the "minimum effective dose needed to mentally disable" subjects. In all, it is believed that the CIA tested about eight mind-altering substances on prison inmates. These substances included LSD, BZ, a compound nearly "ten times more powerful than LSD," several mescaline derivatives and various compounds that included substances drawn from hallucinogenic mushrooms. One of the reasons the CIA was attracted to working with Dr. Kligman was his high level of knowledge about edible mushrooms.

Other declassified documents reveal that prior to its association with the University of Pennsylvania, the Army's Special Operations Division had been searching for a college or university "willing and able" to try out mind-control drugs on humans on a large scale. Earlier attempts at the University of Maryland had failed because of the reluctance of researchers there to expand their program without "liability waivers from the government." Central in the Army's search criteria was locating a university close to Fort Detrick and Edgewood Arsenal that "had easy access to prisoners or confined populations."

Documents also reveal that the Army had concerns about the CIA-sponsored experiments. One memorandum by E.G. Scott, an Army law division chief, questioned conducting tests aimed at producing "irrational or irresponsible behavior" among subjects. Other CIA documents reveal that its Holmesburg experiments, code-named Project Often, were closely linked to other tests conducted from about 1952 through 1968 at additional state and federal prisons. These experiments were aimed at "creating temporary psychotic states in subjects" for the purposes of "disturbing a person's psyche" and "inducing violent behavior."

In 1974, CIA Deputy Inspector General Scott D. Breckinridge, wrote that Project Often "dealt with the behavioral effects of chemical compounds (drugs) on humans" and that following extensive testing "something called the 'Boomer' was developed." Breckinridge also stated that CIA tests included efforts "to come up with a compound that could simulate a heart attack or a stroke in targeted individuals, or perhaps ... to cause the targeted individual to act bizarrely." In the same memo, Breckinridge noted that written test results were not available because the CIA had requested that Army researchers "only convey them verbally." Breckinridge, however, did note that the Army had retained the names of test subjects and the compounds used on them in a computerized database.

Other Army documents state that one of the drugs tested at Holmesburg, identified then only as "EA 3167" but now believed to be "Boomer," produced "delirium and other psychotic behavior lasting from three to four days with subsequent amnesia." One former Fort Detrick researcher, speaking under conditions of anonymity, said that "EA (experimental article) 3167 was a highly classified compound once considered for use domestically during the Watergate scandals." Added the researcher, "It was used widely and more effectively employed overseas where concerns about after-effects were not of any consequence."

The Philadelphia Council committee is expected to make a decision soon on the former inmate's request for a special investigation. Privately, some members of the City Council have stated that they think the request is only a ploy by the former prisoners to draw more attention to their lawsuit.

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I am very familiar with this story. Around 1976, when the US Army Inspector General's Report on the Use of Human Subjects in Chemical Agent Research was released, John Judge got an advanced copy and we shared it with Bill Vitka, then News Director for WMMR FM radio in Philadelphia. (Vitka is now with CBS News Radio).

Having graduated from the University of Penn., Vitka was most interested in the UP studies, especially those contracts that included Kligman's work, although there were other contracts listed for Hannamen Hospital in Philadelphia when it was headed by E. Wharton Shober, who also coordinated the Cuban Aid Relief (CAR), funded by the CIA's Catherwood Fund, another Philadelphia institution. Baylor University Medical Center was another contracted institution, among a dozen others.

Vidka did a week long series of reports on Kligman, and eventually interviewed him on the radio.

Kligman's studies included administering dioxin on prisoners via a skin patch.

Kligman was a mushroom specialist as well, and some of the experiments included LSD, although according to the Church report section on MKNAOMI, it was a CIA chemical and biological warfare unit.

Besides outlining the CIA/Army contracts to educaitonal and medical institutions like Penn and Hanneneman, where Anastasio Somoza of Nicaragua was given an honerary degree during CIA Shober's tenure there as director, there's other associations with the assassination of JFK. Dr./Col. Jose Rivera, whose early classified assignment to Fort Detrick puts him in the MKNAOMI "P-600" unit.

From the Church Report on MKNAOMI:

Chemical and Biological Activities

Against this background, the Central Intelligence Agency entered into a special agreement with the Army on a project which the CIA codenamed MKNAOMI. The original purpose of MKNAOMI is difficult to determine. Few written records were prepared during its 18 year existence; most of the documents relating to it have been destroyed; and persons with knowledge of its early years have either died or have been unable to recall much about their association with the project. However, it is fair to conclude from the types of weapons developed for the CIA, and from the extreme security associated with MKNAOMI, that the possibility of first use of biological weapons by the CIA was contemplated.

The Army agreed that the Special Operations Division (SOD) at Fort Detrick would assist the CIA in developing, testing, and maintaining biological agents and delivery systems. By this agreement, CIA acquired the knowledge, skill, and facilities of the Army to develop biological weapons suited for CIA use. In 1967, the CIA summarized MKNAOMI objectives:

  • To provide for a covert support base to meet clandestine operational requirements.
  • To stockpile severly incapacitating and lethal materials for the specific use of TSD [Technical Services Division].
  • To maintain in operational readiness special and unique items for the dissemination of biological and chemical materials.
  • To provide for the required surveillance, testing, upgrading, and evaluation of materials and items in order to assure absence of defects and complete predictability of results to be expected under operational conditions.

In reviewing the records and testimony of SOD personnel, it is easy for the most part, to distinguish SOD's work for the Army from the work for the CIA, even though very few SOD scientists knew of the CIA connection. For example, the CIA personnel who worked with SOD were identified as military officers from the fictitious Staff Support Group, whose interest in SOD was markedly different from the Army's. The CIA was careful to ensure that its moneys were transferred to SOD to cover the cost of CIA projects and the few existing SOD records indicate which projects were to be charged against the CIA funds received from "P-600," the accounting designation for CIA funds.

SOD's work for the Army from 1952 until the early 1960s was primarily to assess the vulnerability of sensitive installations, such as the Pentagon, air bases, and subway systems, to biological sabotage by an enemy….

The transfer from SOD to the CIA resulted in a major quantity of the toxin being retained by the agency in a manner which clearly violated the President's order….

Nevertheless, the history of MKNAOMI and the atmosphere surrounding it undoubtedly contributed to the mistaken belief of these individuals that they were not directly affected by the President's decision. The MKNAOMI project itself was contrary to the United States policy since 1925 and to Presidential announcement since 1943, for it contemplated a first use of biological weapons by the CIA – albeit in the context of small covert operations. Moreover because of the sensitive nature of MKNAOMI, these scientists gave their superiors little written record of their work and received little or no written guidance. The National Security Council staff, charged by the President with determining what U.S. policy should be, did not discover MKNAOMI in the course of its study and did not, therefore, consider the possibility that the CIA had biological weapons or biological agents. The CIA employee who claims to have made the decision, on his own, to retain the toxin received no written instructions to destroy them. Kept outside the National Security Council's study, the employee had to rely only on the newspaper account of the President's announcement and on his own interpretation of it.

Edited by William Kelly
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Operation Mosquito

« on: August 16, 2006, 12:17 PM »




1956 U.S. military releases mosquitoes infected with Yellow Fever over Savannah, Ga and Avon Park, Fl. Following each test, Army agents posing as public health officials test victims for effects.



Swarms of mosquitoes bred by the Army Chemical Corps at Fort Detrick, Maryland, were released over a predominantly black Savannah neighborhood in 1956. Rare in the United States, the species used, Aedes aegypti, can carry yellow fever and dengue fever. Not surprisingly, a multitude of adverse effects were later reported, as from an elderly woman who blacked out and had to be taken to a hospital with bites all over her body after being, in her words, “covered by a dark cloud of mosquitoes.” She never walked properly after the harrowing episode. Other victims came forward after Freedom unearthed the story.



From 1956 to 1958, the Army Chemical Corps released millions of mosquitoes infected with yellow fever (by 1960, they were being bred at a rate of 130 million per month at Fort Detrick, Maryland) over Savannah, Georgia, and Avon Park, Florida. Residents of Carver Village, an exclusively Black area, were swarmed by mosquitoes and developed fevers, bronchitis, typhoid, encephalitis and still births. Some died. After each release, Army agents posing as public health officials photographed and tested victims, and then vanished.



Ferrie did imply a CIA connection to a few people. He claimed in late 1960 to have been injured in a raid on Cuba. He told Al Landry a vivid story about it. He implied to Herb Wagner a connection with something called Operation Mosquito (by the way, this was too early to have been a misunderstanding of Mongoose, as Davy postulates).



June 14, 1961: Ferrie brings Arcacha to meet Herb WagnerJr. about a loan. They mention "Operation Mosquito"



I was being assigned to a new function, i.e. support of the CIA, and my new offices were being built; so I had to stay at a desk in the same rooms with those guys. Actually it was educational. These were the MKULTRA, ARTICOKE and other games, days. I used to be sent to the meetings. At one MKULTRA meeting I heard a senior CIA type ask the creatures from Ft. Detrich, "Don't you believe it will be possible to create an ethnic weapon?" I was in good company. I believe that the money Dr. MacArthur got from Congress in 1969 was what paid for the "AIDs" "weapon," and its antidote.

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Operation Mosquito [etc., excellent information]

Thanks very much to you and Bill for this information. This has legs, kids.

I'm going to get to an interesting likely connection to MKNAOMI, Operation Mosquito, and even—yes—Pennsylvania in this message, but bear with me please for several paragraphs, first, about the activities of George DeMohrenschildt and Clemard Joseph Charles in May 1963.

From information I'm receiving in dribs and drabs, it's beginning to look like this thread may have a great deal indeed to do with Clemard Joseph Charles being "in a fine frame of mind" on Monday, 6 May 1963 in New York City, during his four or five hour meeting with CIA New York (at which James McCord, it seems, almost certainly was present), because Clemard Joseph Charles had just "received a promise from Jerry W. Johnston, assistant Vice President, the Chase Manhattan [bank], for a million dollar loan." This was for "business ventures" in Haiti—all associated with George DeMohrenschildt, of course. One of the two "conditions" for the loan (the other entirely phony and immaterial, as is proved by later documents) was "a 90% guarantee of the loan by the Agency for International Development." The acronym for that CIA front, of course, is "AID." Don't you just love it.

Compare the above ebullient demeanor of Clemard Joseph Charles in his 6 May 1963 meeting with CIA New York to the description supplied by Ms. Dorothe Matlack (a.k.a. Dorothy Matlack) of Clemard Joseph Charles in his meeting the very next day—Tuesday, 7 May 1963—first with her, and subsequently with one or more CIA representatives (including a "Mr. Green") at the Hotel Willard in Washington, D. C:

  • When the HSCA interviewed her about the meeting, Dorothe Matlack "described Clemard Joseph Charles as 'frantic and frightened.'" ...Dorothe Matlack said she felt George DeMohrenschildt dominated Clemard Joseph Charles in some way. Dorothe Matlack said that, despite George DeMohrenschildt's subterfuge—that he and Clemard Joseph Charles were in the jute business together—she did not believe this to be the real reason for George DeMohrenschildt's presence at that meeting: "I knew the Texan wasn't there to sell hemp." The HSCA reported that the CIA maintained contact with Clemard Joseph Charles after this meeting." —A.J. Weberman Nodule 10

Yeah, I just bet they did.

The CIA had further contact with Clemard Joseph Charles two days later, on 9 May 1963, at National Airport in Washington, D.C. There, Charles was described as being "nattily dressed in a gray silk suit," outbound with DeMohrenschildt, purportedly for Chicago. But DeMohrenschildt is known to have gone to Philadelphia, so apparently Charles did, too. (This is not of record anywhere and was brought out in the timelining of these events.)

Without going into all the details at the moment, which several people are working on organizing, this is looking like it has everything to do with a covert operation being run on JFK at the exact same time by CIA and Bundy that culminates in a Top Secret meeting between Bundy and JFK just 11 days later—on Monday, 20 May 1963—resulting in an order for the Ambassador of Haiti to be recalled to Washington, D.C. (memorialized in National Security Action Memorandum No. 246, written by Bundy on Thursday, 23 May 1963).

Just two days after the meeting, on Wednesday, 22 May 1963, an unnamed Charge is sent to Haiti, purportedly to attend Duvalier's "self-coronation." (There is no record so far found in the State Department docs of who this Charge is, but stay tuned...)

Just four days later, on Sunday, 26 May 1963 (one month to the day after the phony staged attempted "kidnapping" of Duvalier's children, almost certainly a CIA op), U.S. Ambassador to Haiti Thurston is recalled to Washington, D.C. for "consultation," leaving the U.S. Embassy in Haiti in control of the Charge d'Affaires. Thurston will not be returned to Haiti.

And just four days after that, on Thursday, 30 May 1963, DeMohrenschildt arrived in Dallas, hastily packed up his belongings, and tore off to Haiti, arriving on Sunday, 2 June 1963. The U.S. Embassy in Haiti of course now was in control of the unknown Charge d'Affaires.

This is a very, very dirty mess, and the timeline reveals that JFK was being kept in the dark and played like a lute by CIA, State, and his own national security advisor McGeorge Bundy.

Whoever the anonymous person was that e-mailed Greg Parker and said something to the effect that "the key to the assassination is Clemard Charles" probably knew just exactly what they were talking about—which brings me back to MKNAOMI and Operation Mosquito.

Consider these few data and the dates from a timeline of AIDS development and CIA connections:

  • In 1962, under the cover of cancer research, the United States charts a path to commit premeditated murder, the "Special Virus" program begins on February 12th. Dr. Len Hayflick sets up a U.S. mycoplasma laboratory at Stanford University. Many believe the "Special Virus" program began in November 1961 with a Phizer [sic-Pfizer] contract.
    Beginning in 1963 and for every year thereafter, the "Special Virus" program conducted annual progress reviews at Hershey Medical Center, Hershey, PA. The annual meetings are representative of the aggressive nature in which the United States pursued the development of AIDS.

What that timeline doesn't say is that the facility in Hershey, Pennsylvania is the Penn State Hershey Medical Center, Penn State having 20 campuses all over Pennsylvania, including the Delaware County campus in Philadelphia.

Finally, I'll mention that I have information, pending confirmation, that Haiti was the source of the first known heterosexual transmission of AIDS, and has a history of a very heavy concentration of AIDS.

All of this information hasn't been fully processed and evaluated and more is coming in from a variety of sources very rapidly, but this is germane to several current threads and I thought it important to get this information, even raw, into this one right away.


Edited by Ashton Gray
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In the narrative above, I mention that Dorothe Matlack had arranged to meet with Clemard Joseph Charles at the Hotel Willard in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday, 7 May 1963, and also had arranged for another meeting for Clemard Joseph Charles at the same hotel later that day with a "Mr. Green" from CIA. The first meeting was a noon luncheon meeting attended by Ms. Matlack, the CIA's A.J. "Tony" Czaikowski, Clemard Joseph Charles, and George and Jeanne DeMohrenschildt.

When the luncheon was over, Ms. Matlack and Czaikowski left, with Charles and the DeMohrenschildts still waiting there for "Mr. Green" to arrive for a separate meeting at 2:00 p.m. that "Mr. Green" had specified.

So just who was "Mr. Green"?

An overlay and comparison of a number entries in the timeline points to the high likelihood that "Mr. Green" actually was J.C. King, long-time crony of Nelson Rockefeller, and head of CIA's Western Hemisphere Division. This, I believe, is the "Western Hemisphere representative" so coyly and anonymously referred to in the reports and testimony concerning this crucial meeting, only ever named once as "Mr. Green," which almost certainly was a pseudonym.

I believe this is the same person referred to so coyly and anonymously in the Warren Commission testimony of Richard Helms only as the "Western Hemisphere desk."

I believe all of this is starting to split open like an overripe melon in the noon summer sun.


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