C.I.A. mind control experiments and the man behind them

Listen 49:01
From 1955, artist William Millarc takes part in an LSD experiment alleged to have been part of the MK-ULTRA program.

From 1955, artist William Millarc takes part in an LSD experiment alleged to have been part of the MK-ULTRA program.

Guest: Stephen Kinzer

Back in the 1950’s as the Cold War with the Soviet Union was heating up, the C.I.A. became convinced that the country that could control the mind would dominate the world. It began a top secret program that came to be known as MK-ULTRA and they hired a chemist named Sidney Gottlieb who was given free rein to experiment on unwitting subjects such as prisoners, patients, addicts, even johns. They administered LSD and harsh interrogation techniques, which were essentially psychological torture techniques. Our guest STEPHEN KINZER details this shocking and sordid story in his new book, Poisoner in Chief. We’ll hear about the origins of the intelligence community’s psychological experiments, how it affected the lives of its subjects, and how some of these tactics have been implemented in more recent history.

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