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Syndic Literary Journal

Brain Warfare

Written & Narrated By Baltimore Writer Charles Rammelkamp 

That snake in the grass Allen Dulles,

head of the CIA until Kennedy fired him

after the Bay of Pigs fiasco,

spilled the beans in a speech he gave

to his fellow Princeton alumni, in 1953,

talking about the manipulation of minds,

conditioning patsies to repeat thoughts

implanted by suggestion from outside.


“We might call it,

in its new form, ‘brain warfare,’”

he told the audience in Hot Springs, Virginia,

that April evening, early in the Cold War.

I was sitting in the front row,

not that “Glen Webber” meant anything

to the man who’d oversee

the Iranian coup d’état four months later,

the one that strengthened the Shah’s hand,

the stooge Pahlavi the Ayatollah would overthrow

two and half decades later.


“Its aim is to condition the mind

so it no longer reacts

on a free will or rational basis.”


How smug Dulles was, lamenting,

“We in the West

are handicapped in brain warfare.

We have no human guinea pigs,”

attributing such a sinister program to the Soviets,

claiming the moral high ground,

when his Bluebird and Artichoke projects,

brutal experiments on unwilling subjects,

had been going on for two years.






Compiled/Published by LeRoy Chatfield
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