CIA trickery and deception manual revealed in new book
November 3, 2009 1 Comment
By JOSEPH FITSANAKIS | intelNews.org |
A CIA manual of surreptitious behavioral and signaling tricks, which was recently discovered by researchers, has been declassified and published in a new book. In The Official CIA Manual of Trickery and Deception, espionage historian H. Keith Melton and Robert Wallace, former director of the CIA’s Office of Technical Services, have reproduced the entire manual, which was supposed to have been destroyed by the Agency. Remarkably, the manual’s main author was John Mulholland, a professional magician and editor for 23 years of The Sphinx, America’s authoritative magazine for magicians. In 1953, Mulholland left the stage and The Sphinx to work full time for the CIA, which he did for several years. The manual, which was originally produced in the early 1960s, is an illustrated protocol for sleight-of-hand techniques for use by CIA operatives in the field. It includes tricks such as handling several small items at once and allowing only one of them to end up in a pocket; techniques for dumping powder into a target’s drink; or putting on convincing expressions of various kinds. In his forward to the manual, John McLaughlin, the CIA’s ex-deputy director, makes the point that “[a]s best we know”, some of the manual’s more lethal protocols “were never actually used”. What is even more interesting, however, is that the manual was originally part of MKULTRA, one of the CIA’s most extensive mental-related experimentation projects.