The Department of Veterans Affairs has reported that military scientists tested hundreds of chemical and biological substances on them, including VX, tabun, soman, sarin, cyanide, LSD, PCP, and World War I-era blister agents like phosgene and mustard. The full scope of the tests, however, may never be known. As a CIA official explained to the GAO, referring to the agency's infamous MKULTRA mind-control experiments, "The names of those involved in the tests are not available because names were not recorded or the records were subsequently destroyed." Besides, said the official, some of the tests involving LSD and other psychochemical drugs "were administered to an undetermined number of people without their knowledge."
posted by Joe Beese
on May 19, 2009 -
Torture Memos Released
As we explained in the Section 2340A Memorandum, "pain and suffering" as used in Section 2340 is best understood as a single concept, not distinct concepts of "pain" as distinguished from "suffering"... The waterboard, which inflicts no pain or actual harm whatsoever, does not, in our view inflict "severe pain or suffering". Even if one were to parse the statute more finely to treat "suffering" as a distinct concept, the waterboard could not be said to inflict severe sufering. The waterboard is simply a controlled acute episode, lacking the connotation of a protracted period of time generally given to suffering.
breaks it down, Greenwald rants
posted by empath
on Apr 16, 2009 -
In a new article in the Washington Post
: "The Bush administration issued a pair of secret memos to the CIA in 2003 and 2004 that explicitly endorsed the agency's use of interrogation techniques such as waterboarding against al-Qaeda suspects". These documents were requested by then CIA director George Tenet, who told 60 Minutes last year (in conjuction with the publication of his book, In the Center of the Storm
), ""The image that's been portrayed is, we sat around the campfire and said, 'Oh, boy, now we go get to torture people.' Well, we don't torture people. Let me say that again to you. We don't torture people. Okay?
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing
on Oct 15, 2008 -
In his new book, 'The Way of the World
' "Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Ron Suskind claims that, after the Iraq war began, the White House ordered the CIA to forge a back-dated, handwritten letter from the head of Iraqi intelligence to Saddam Hussein, in an attempt to tie Hussein to the 9/11 attacks."*
: "'It said that 9/11 ringleader Mohammad Atta had actually trained for his mission in Iraq' and that Iraq bought yellowcake uranium from Niger with the help of al Qaeda. Suskind also claims that the Bush administration had information from a top Iraqi intelligence official "that there were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq – intelligence they received in plenty of time to stop an invasion." After the fake letter was released in late 2003, press outlets reported it as evidence of a Saddam/al Qaeda link. "Now, if this is true, that blows the lid off al Qaeda—Saddam," said Bill O’Reilly at the time. [more inside]
posted by ericb
on Aug 5, 2008 -
An internal CIA memorandum has been obtained by Venezuelan counterintelligence from the US Embassy in Caracas that reveals a plan to destabilize Venezuela during the upcoming constitutional referendum
. The plan, titled "OPERATION PLIERS" was authored by CIA Officer Michael Middleton Steere and was addressed to CIA Director General Michael Hayden in Washington. The full text of the memo will be released soon for verification purposes. Many previously
posted by scalefree
on Nov 28, 2007 -
The man who knew too much.
"He was the CIA's expert on Pakistan's nuclear secrets, but Rich Barlow was thrown out and disgraced when he blew the whistle on a US cover-up. Now he's to have his day in court."
posted by homunculus
on Oct 13, 2007 -
- India's second-highest peak
, at 25,645 feet (7816m), sits in a "sanctuary," surrounded by 21,000-foot+ lesser mountains. This has made it even more of a challenge to climb. Among those who took up the challenge were a 1965 CIA team
trying to set up a plutonium-powered device to spy on China's nuclear testing program. That expedition
retreated in the face of bad weather, leaving the device on the mountain. When they returned the next spring, it was gone. The Nanda Devi Sanctuary supplies water to the Ganges River, and there were fears that the four pounds of plutonium in the device could escape into the watershed. Those fears have been confirmed
posted by Kirth Gerson
on Aug 28, 2007 -
Rorschach and Awe.
"America's coercive interrogation methods were reverse-engineered by two C.I.A. psychologists who had spent their careers training U.S. soldiers to endure Communist-style torture techniques. The spread of these tactics was fueled by a myth about a critical 'black site' operation."
posted by homunculus
on Jul 31, 2007 -
Game developer/ perfume critic Theresa Duncan has died, and longtime companion Jeremy Blake is missing.
The art world is buzzing
about the seeming suicide-by-water of video installation artist Jeremy Blake. The perfume
blogs are fizzing with sadness over the death of Theresa Duncan, whose suicide preceded Blake's. The cops are not releasing the notes left by the late, pretty
people, but a clue might be found in the paranoiac screed
Duncan posted on her blog in May, in which Blake's ex-girlfriend, the CIA, FBI, Church of Scientology, Jeff Gannon, bloated plutocrats and many other bugbears of the psy-ops crowd
were put on Duncan's mental merry-go-round and given a real strong spin.
posted by Scram
on Jul 21, 2007 -
In 1973 CIA director James Schlesinger asked "employees to report activities they thought might be inconsistent with the Agency’s charter." You know, illegal stuff, black ops, the works. The resulting top secret documents are called the "Family Jewels."
Today they were released. Press release
with link to documents.
posted by MarshallPoe
on Jun 26, 2007 -
There may be some among us who can imagine 20 days in captivity; perhaps a fraction of those can imagine a full year deprived of liberty and most human contact. But 20 years? Downey and Fecteau have consistently sought to downplay their period of imprisonment; and neither has done what arguably too many former CIA officers do these days with far less justification: write a book. Downey has said that such a book would contain "500 blank pages," and Fecteau says the whole experience could be summed up by the word "boring."
Extraordinary Fidelity: Two CIA Prisoners in China, 1952–73 [secure link]
by Nicholas Dujmovic, a CIA historian and a veteran intelligence analyst. Time article about Downey and Fecteau
posted by Kattullus
on May 3, 2007 -
convinced 22 friends, neighbors and relatives that she could have satellites scan their bodies for disease, then have CIA agents administer secret medicines to them while they slept. [via
posted by brundlefly
on Jan 24, 2007 -
Newsfilter: U.S. Seeks Silence on CIA Prisons
"The Bush administration has told a federal judge that terrorism suspects held in secret CIA prisons should not be allowed to reveal details of the "alternative interrogation methods that their captors used to get them to talk...the government, in trying to block lawyers' access to the 14 detainees, effectively asserts that the detainees' experiences are a secret that should never be shared with the public."
Previously: (1) (2)
posted by StopMakingSense
on Nov 4, 2006 -
...Lawrence Wright tells, for the first time, the story of the F.B.I. agent who had the best chance of foiling the 9/11 plot. Here, with Amy Davidson, Wright talks about how turf wars with the C.I.A. got in the way. Wright’s book “The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda and the Road to 9/11” will be published by Knopf in August.
posted by Postroad
on Aug 2, 2006 -
The Cultural Cold War
by Frances Saunders covers the way in which the government, via CIA-influenced NGOs worked to alter the direction that popular movies and animations took during the first half of the Cold War. [mi]
posted by longbaugh
on Jul 22, 2006 -
"I learned Valerie Plame's name from Joe Wilson's entry in 'Who's Who in America.'"
Bob "Prince of Darkness" Novak comes clean (sort of) on his role in the Plame scandal. Novak asserts that Fitzgerald knew the identities of his source for Plame's identity. "That Fitzgerald did not indict any of these sources may indicate his conclusion that none of them violated the Intelligence Identities Protection Act," Novak says. Further, he says that his source spilled the beans inadvertently: "After the federal investigation was announced, he told me through a third party that the disclosure was inadvertent on his part."
posted by Heminator
on Jul 11, 2006 -
CIA Gives Up on Bin Laden Search
says a post full of links on Sploid, it was revealed yesterday (when no one was paying attention) that the CIA disbanded its Bin Laden unit one year ago. The post also links to news that the FBI has "no hard evidence" connecting Bin Laden to the 9/11 attacks.
posted by cell divide
on Jul 5, 2006 -
Personality, Ideology and Bush's Terror Wars
[...]Just as disturbing as Al Qaeda's plans and capabilities are the descriptions of the Bush administration's handling of the war on terror and its willful determination to go to war against Iraq. That war, according to the author's sources who attended National Security Council briefings in 2002, was primarily waged "to make an example" of Saddam Hussein, to "create a demonstration model to guide the behavior of anyone with the temerity to acquire destructive weapons or, in any way, flout the authority of the United States."[...]
posted by Postroad
on Jun 20, 2006 -