- 'Unabomber' Ted
Was CIA Mind Control Subject!
By Alexander Cockburn
- It turns out that Theodore Kaczynski, a.k.a. the
Unabomber, was a volunteer in mind-control experiments sponsored by
the CIA at Harvard in the late 1950s and early 1960s.
- Michael Mello, author of the recently published
book, "The United States of America vs. Theodore John Kaczynski,"
notes that at some point in his Harvard years--1958 to 1962--Kaczynski
agreed to be the subject of "a psychological experiment."
Mello identifies the chief researcher for these only as a lieutenant
colonel in World War II, working for the CIA's predecessor
organization, the Office of Strategic Services. In fact, the man
experimenting on the young Kaczynski was Dr. Henry Murray, who died in
1988. Murray became preoccupied by psychoanalysis in the 1920s, drawn
to it through a fascination with Herman Melville's "Moby
Dick," which he gave to Sigmund Freud, who duly made the excited
diagnosis that the whale was a father figure. After spending the 1930s
developing personality theory, Murray was recruited to the OSS at the
start of the war, applying his theories to the selection of agents and
also presumably to interrogation.
- As chairman of the Department of Social Relations at
Harvard, Murray zealously prosecuted the CIA's efforts to carry
forward experiments in mind control conducted by Nazi doctors in the
concentration camps. The overall program was under the control of the
late Sidney Gottlieb, head of the CIA's technical services division.
Just as Harvard students were fed doses of LSD, psilocybin and other
potions, so too were prisoners and many unwitting guinea pigs.
- Sometimes the results were disastrous. A dram of LSD
fed by Gottlieb himself to an unwitting U.S. army officer, Frank
Olson, plunged Olson into escalating psychotic episodes, which
culminated in Olson's fatal descent from an upper window in the
Statler-Hilton in New York. Gottlieb was the object of a lawsuit not
only by Olson's children but also by the sister of another man,
Stanley Milton Glickman, whose life had disintegrated into psychosis
after being unwittingly given a dose of LSD by Gottlieb. What did
Murray give Kaczynski? Did the experiment's long-term effects help
tilt him into the Unabomber's homicidal rampages? The CIA's mind
experiment program was vast. How many other human time bombs were thus
primed? How many of them have exploded?
- There are other human time bombs, primed in haste,
ignorance or indifference to long-term consequences. Amid all the
finger-pointing to causes prompting the recent wave of schoolyard
killings, not nearly enough clamor has been raised about the fact that
many of these teenagers suddenly exploding into mania were on a
regimen of antidepressants. Eric Harris, one of the shooters at
Columbine, was on Luvox. Kip Kinkel, who killed his parents and two
students in Oregon, was on Prozac.
- There are a number of other instances. Apropos
possible linkage, Dr. Peter Breggin, author of books on Prozac and
Ritalin, has said, "I have no doubt that Prozac can contribute to
violence and suicide. I've seen many cases. In the recent clinical
trial, 6% of the children became psychotic on Prozac. And manic
psychosis can lead to violence."
- A 15-year-old girl attending a ritzy liberal arts
school in the Northeast told me that 80% of the kids in her class were
on Prozac, Ritalin or Dexedrine. The pretext used by the school
authorities is attention deficit disorder or attention deficit
hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD, with a diagnosis made on the basis of
questions such as: "Do you find yourself daydreaming or looking
out the window?"
- Ritalin is being given to about 2 million American
school children. A 1986 article by Richard Scarnati in the
International Journal of the Addictions lists more than a hundred
adverse reactions to Ritalin, including paranoid delusions, paranoid
psychosis, amphetamine-like psychosis and terror. Meanwhile,
uncertainty reigns on the precise nature of the complaint that Ritalin
is supposed to be treating. One panel reviewing the proceedings at a
conference on ADHD last year even doubted whether the disorder is a
"valid" diagnosis of a broad range of children's behavior,
and said there was little evidence Ritalin did any good. In 1996, the
Drug Enforcement Administration denounced the use of Ritalin and
concluded that "the dramatic increase in the use of [Ritalin] in
the 1990s should be viewed as a marker or warning to society."
- Indeed. Land mines now litter the terrain of our
society, waiting to explode.
- Alexander Cockburn Writes for the Nation and Other
Publications Copyright 1999 Los Angeles Times. All Rights Reserved