Allen Barker’s The Truth
These are some basic truths about our society today. Look around, see for yourself. I am not going to be sidetracked into the wasted effort of “proving” these things here for people who will not listen anyway [but please see the additional reading section]. Listen to me, listen to the press, listen to the government. Who do you believe?
The United States Government tortures its own citizens. We go around the world talking about human rights, but agents of the U.S. government have not hesitated to commit the most vicious crimes against humanity right here at home. The political reality is that the U.S. is the leading economic and political power in the world, and the only superpower. Thus the U.S. government can maintain its pious hypocritical stance without fear of “serious” exposure. Our government has grossly abused its current power. It has wasted a chance to be a world role model for ethical government, and the chance likely will never come again.
The U.S. Constitution is just a piece of paper to covert thugs. The only rights you have are the ones you can enforce. Here in the land of High Noon, despite all the talk to the contrary, it is every man for himself. There are plenty of people who would love to see you literally tortured if you differ from them on the most minor political points. We lead the world in the technology of warfare and espionage. The same technology is used to suppress and harass so-called dissidents or “threatening” people and movements. If you cannot prove it happened, and the weapons officially do not exist, then nothing really happened, did it?
“Freedom” is an empty concept used for social control. You are free only to the extent that you do not, for any reason, step on the toes of any “important” people. You may not even know what you have done, and may never find out: The repressive machinery will kick into gear and your life will be ruined. You may even come to realize that a campaign of dirty tricks is being focused on you, but no one will believe you. Most people live boring (to others) lives that do not threaten the powerful, and therefore do not draw the attention of the repressive apparatus. Thus the myth of freedom is perpetuated, while you are labeled a paranoid kook. The rhetoric of freedom is at least useful in that it forces the repression into covert channels. That is why I can openly post this list.
The elite and powerful in the U.S. are effectively immune to law. The law is a tool to serve the ends of the powerful. Selective enforcement is the norm. Of course, the powerful have their own sets of laws they use to attack each other. Bad policies, based on misguided notions and a patronizing, pseudo-moralizing paternalism, produce disastrous consequences. Politicians cynically exploit the resulting suffering to maintain their positions of power, reinforcing the misguided policies. Police on the street end up paying the price, bearing the brunt of enforcing bad laws.
The elite opinion-makers are not nearly as smart as they think they are. Their insular debates are frequently characterized by ignorance and outright stupidity. This tendency is heavily abetted by a forced conformity of belief. The price of mounting too strong a challenge to a “politically powerful” idea is ostracism and ridicule by their peers. Soon, testing ideas for political viability or against projected poll results becomes a substitute for critical thinking.
The mainstream press will not challenge — and at times participates in — outrageous governmental abuses. Watergate and the investigations of intelligence abuses in the mid-’70s were historical rarities. The press routinely cooperates in a conspiracy of silence — even when innocent American lives are being destroyed and hideous crimes are being committed. The investigations of intelligence abuses in the ’70s were also not especially effective. The investigators were completely outclassed by a group of professional liars, trained to subvert governments worldwide. The Cold War was still on, giving additional clout to the apologists for domestic crimes committed by our own forces. The “intelligence community” is well aware of the limited attention span of the American press, and repeatedly and effectively uses stonewalling, or worse, to escape any responsibility or accountability for its actions. The reforms of the ’70s were subsequently largely reversed. We need a sustained, nonpartisan political consensus to clean out our nation’s dirty secrets, give the domestic victims redress, punish the Cold War criminals, and start fresh without the baggage of secret, unacknowledged atrocities.
The “ruling class” elites typically respond positively only to the threat of losing their privileged positions or of violence. That is just how it is. It often takes a riot or other violent actions to even draw their passing notice. But then this violence — often caused by their shameful neglect of gross injustice and intolerable conditions — is used to justify increasing police and secret police powers. In their insulated cocoons, the elites pretend not to hear the cries of the disenfranchised — after all, things like that do not happen in their neighborhoods. By definition, those people must have done something to deserve it. There need not be any official, organized conspiracy. Conspiracies do occur regularly — they have throughout history, and our time is no exception. But, for the individuals who are victimized by the system, it does not matter if it is an organized unit following orders or a system of well-understood winks and nods. Rule of law is clearly a joke in the U.S. today.
They blame it on “rogues” if they are caught, but knowledge goes straight up to the top. Even where some actions truly are the results of rogue agents, the coverups go straight to the top. Purposeful ignorance to maintain “plausible deniability” is no excuse or escape from culpability. The buck never stops… The U.S. government is not the United States or America. Most Americans are decent people who would be appalled to know the dirty tricks their government carries out in their names. Unable or unwilling to accept the ruthless amorality of the power-hungry, they tend to believe whatever lies are sent their way. And unfortunately, as in any society, a significant minority of Americans are simply fascists. Excessive government secrecy has even destroyed the democratic accountability of our leaders to the people: Politicians can engage in, approve of, or willfully ignore covert operations, knowing their actions will never be revealed to the public. Amazingly, some members of Congressional intelligence committees are “not cleared” to even know details of the programs they must vote on. (These are our elected representatives being dictated to by a permanent, secret bureaucracy.) The public will never go to the voting booths knowing which of their leaders participated in domestic spying, political surveillance, and outright torture.
Links for Further Reading: These are some notes and links to other pages on the web. I do not endorse anything but reading the pages and forming your own impressions. At least look over a few before dismissing what I have said above. Appendix E of the Interim Report of the Advisory Committee on http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/radiation/ Human Radiation Experiments. This appendix gives a summary of the records retrieval process by various U.S. government agencies. It also has some brief summaries of programs of unconsented experimentation carried out on the American public. Remember, this is a government document. Only experiments carried out before May 30, 1974 were covered (for example, the Navy identified 650 experiments after 1975 and 150 before). The notes at the end of the CIA section are especially interesting, including: “CIA did investigate the use and effect of microwaves on humans in response to Soviet practice of beaming microwaves on the U.S. Embassy but determined that this was outside the scope of the Committee’s purview.” Additional information, including the Final Report is available online. This entire investigation was a breath of fresh air, but too little and (50 years) too late. Most victims have still not even been notified. U.S. News and World Report, in its Jan. 24, 1994 issue, has an article titled http://web.archive.org/web/20010702140352/http://www.cs.virginia.edu/~alb/misc/coldWarExperiments.html “The Cold War Experiments.” This article discusses the many instances of illegal human experimentation in addition to radiation experiments.
Some excerpts: “…the government has long ignored thousands of other cold war victims, rebuffing their requests for compensation and refusing to admit its responsibility for injuries they suffered.” “Continued secrecy and legal roadblocks erected by the government have made it virtually impossible for victims of these cold war human experiments to sue the government successfully, legal experts say.” “Many of the stories of people whose lives were destroyed by mind-altering drugs, electroshock `treatments’ and other military and CIA experiments involving toxic chemicals or behavior modification have been known for almost 20 years. But U.S. News has discovered that only a handful were ever compensated — or even told what was done to them.”
“Admiral Turner, in his 1983 deposition, conceded that `a disappointingly small number’ were notified but defended the agency’s continuing refusal to declassify the names of the researchers and universities involved. `I don’t think that would have been necessarily the best way,’ Turner said. `Not in the litigious society we live in.” These are, simply put, gross violations of basic human rights, carried out by and still perpetuated by our government. COINTELPRO was an FBI operation in the 1960s that aimed to infiltrate and destroy movements and organizations the FBI had labeled “subversive.” The targets included, among others, women’s liberation groups, black nationalist groups, and American Indian movements. The techniques included harassment, intimidation, infiltration, the use of agents provocateur, wiretapping, bugging, and blackmail. Even Martin Luther King Jr. was singled out for harassment and bugging. There is NO reason to believe these techniques are not still being employed by our government (whether or not the FBI itself is still involved). The technology is much advanced now, and the psychological warfare techniques likely are too. (The Bill of Rights has not changed.) U.S. Domestic Covert Operations, a local copy of articles at mediafilter.org.
COINTELPRO Revisited, an article by Brian Glick. [Brian Glick wrote the preface to the book The COINTELPRO Papers: Documents from the FBI's Secret Wars Against Domestic Dissent by Ward Churchill and Jim Vander Wall.] This article is interesting in that it also offers suggestions for groups dealing with this type of harassment. We know about COINTELPRO because of some documents removed from an FBI office in 1971. This prompted official investigations. Otherwise, allegations of such large-scale harassment would surely have been dismissed as a crazy conspiracy theory, and we would likely have heard, “There is no way they could keep something like that secret.” Frank Donner was an attorney and political theorist. He included the reality of federal repression and vigilante action in his political theories. Here is a summary of his theories, expanded from a Covert Action Quarterly article.
Mind control and electromagnetic radiation: From “Microwaves and Behavior” by Don Justesen, American Psychologist, Mar. 1975: “Human beings can `hear’ microwave energy. The averaged densities of energy necessary for perception of the hisses, clicks, and pops that seem to occur inside the head are quite small, at least an order of magnitude below the current permissible limit in the United States for continuous exposure to microwaves, which is 10 mW/cm^2.”
“To `hear’ microwave energy, it must first be modulated so that it impinges upon the `listener’ as a pulse or a series of pulses of high amplitude.” “Sharp and Grove … found that appropriate modulation of microwave energy can result in direct `wireless’ and `receiverless’ communication of speech. They recorded by voice on tape each of the single-syllable words for digits between 1 and 10. The electrical sine-wave analogs of each word were then processed so that each time a sine wave crossed zero reference in the negative direction, a brief pulse of microwave energy was triggered. By radiating themselves with these `voice-modulated’ microwaves, Sharp and Grover were readily able to hear, identify, and distinguish among the 9 words. The sounds heard were not unlike those emitted by persons with artificial larynxes.” Note that the published date is 1975. There is little doubt that improved modulation and microwave generation techniques have been developed in the meantime. This is a fairly sophisticated application of microwave harassment techniques. The same article notes that basic microwave heating can cause damage before sensations of heating are even noticed. Microwave attacks by thermal loading can inflict brain damage and other physical damage, and on this point science has never been in doubt.
A Newsweek article “Soon, `Phasers on Stun”, from Feb. 7, 1994, subtitled, “The Science of War: A new generation of nonlethal weapons may help rout mobs, subdue gunmen, even win wars — without killing the innocent.” Excerpts: “Warden and other new-wave military thinkers say the list of exotic technologies that could be harnessed for nonlethal weapons is already large and growing. It includes lasers, microwaves, sound waves, strobe lights, electromagnetic pulses, microbes, chemicals…” “Sources tell Newsweek that the FBI consulted Moscow experts on the possible use of a Soviet technique for beaming subliminal messages to Koresh. The technique uses inaudible transmissions that could have convinced Koresh he was hearing the voice of God in his head… None of this was used, of course…”
Note that in many cases these weapons can kill and “nonlethal” is a misnomer. The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) is concerned about these new “nonlethal,” directed energy, and laser blinding weapons, as they will likely be employed in the next major war (unless a ban in enacted). In March of 1996 the Red Cross held a symposium on the medical profession and the effects of weapons which included several papers on “nonlethal” weapons and electromagnetic anti-personnel weapons. Medical professionals should maintain an awareness of the fact that their research may be used to design weapons, whether or not that was its original intention. The same could be said of scientists and engineers. Another good paper at the Red Cross site is on “How visits by the ICRC can help prisoners cope with the effects of traumatic stress“. This paper discusses the effects of imprisonment and torture on individuals, and how visits by ICRC members can help. Of torture they note, “the worst scars are in the mind.”
An excerpt from the book The Body Electric by Robert Becker, copyright 1985. Of particular note: “The Central Intelligence Agency funded research on electromagnetic mind control at least as early as 1960, when the notorious MKULTRA program, mostly concerned with hypnosis and psychedelic drugs, included money for adapting bioelectric sensing methods (at that time primarily the EEG) to surveillance and interrogation, as well as for finding `techniques of activation of the human organism by remote electronic means.’ In testimony before the Senate Sub- committee on Health and Scientific Research on September 21, 1977, MKULTRA director Dr. Sydney Gottlieb recalled: `There was a running interest in what effects people’s standing in the field of radio energy have…” Ordering information for the book can be found here, as well as other places on the web. A series of articles on the history of mind control by Harry V. Martin and David Caul, from the Napa Sentinel. The original version, and one with a table of contents.
Do you think electromagnetic weapons are new? Here is an article called Radio Waves and Life , by Tom Jaski, from 1960. [Note that I have not yet been able to locate this reference in the library. Tom Jaski and Charles Susskind have an article in Science, Feb. 17, 1961, 133:3451, which discusses many of the same articles and results, though in a more ``scientific'' tone.] Notice that he is discussing and replicating (in many cases) results reported as early as the 1920s. Particularly intriguing is the mention of different “resonant frequencies” which subjectively interfere with different people. Also worth noting is the suggestion that information about internal mental states could be inferred by broadcasting a radio signal and analyzing changes to the received signal induced by an active brain. Given the low power levels required for some of these psychophysical effects, and the ability to concentrate certain frequencies of electromagnetic radiation into tight beams, it is worth considering the possibility that low-orbiting satellites could transmit such signals. After all, satellites send broadcast signals down to Earth all the time. Such a capability would have obvious strategic value were it technically possible.
Mind reading. There is little published research on this topic, so the following notes are somewhat speculative. I hope they convince you that what at first seem like ridiculous claims are definitely possible. Nothing generates more ridicule and accusations of schizophrenia than someone claiming people can read their mind (or thoughts, or subvocalized speech). But even without the capability to truly read someone’s mind, one could fake that ability by planting subliminal words or suggestions in the victim’s mind. Using a microwave “voice projection” device, or some other means of conveying subliminal messages, the sick harasser could first plant an idea or suggestion in the victim’s mind and later reveal that “thought” to the victim. The harasser plants the thought and then reveals the thought he has planted, but to the unsuspecting victim it appears his mind has been read. (One could also create temporal illusions by planting a thought from a previously-sent message; an illusion that a third party is involved could be created by planting a thought from someone else’s message.) (Eye-gaze monitoring, for example, could also be used to infer something about a person’s thought process.)
“Mind reading” does not mean someone has a “grand theory of mind,” or understands everything about how the brain works. It just means that someone has correlated some measured signal or vibration with brain activity the person experiences as thinking. For example, thinking to oneself in one’s “inner voice” is likely neurologically very closely related to speech production. The patterns of brain activity are likely to be similar. It would not be surprising if the muscles of the throat and larynx receive the same signals as in speech but at much lower levels, resulting in a measurable physical response that could be directly converted to sound. The body naturally emits electromagnetic radiation. Passive sensor devices can pick up this radiation. It is possible that by measuring and analyzing these signals one could make inferences about the brain processes that created them. While it is fashionable to criticize the government as inept, in certain classified areas including sensor technology and signal analysis the government is likely far ahead of the private sector. (If nothing else they can steal the best technology from around the world.) Passive sensor technology could easily be advanced enough to measure signals with extremely low power levels. In addition to passive devices, it may be possible to use active devices to infer some of the workings of a person’s brain. (An example of active versus passive sensors is a submarine which pings the ocean to get a reading versus one that simply listens.) It was mentioned above that the CIA focused much interest on the effects of people standing in a field of radio energy.
Implanted devices are commonly assumed to be the mechanism for thought-reading. While this assumption tends to be dismissed, implanted devices have been in use for years. An excerpt from “Two-Way Transdermal Communication with the Brain,” by Jose Delgado et al., American Psychologist, March 1975: “Permanent implantation of electrodes within the brain is a widely used method to investigate neurological functions and electrophysiological correlates of behavior.” In this paper, an implanted device is described which is coupled with an external transmitter and power supply via a pair of coils acting as a transformer. This means the implanted device does not require a battery or external lead wires. This was from 1975, when integrated circuits were just coming into use. These days an external transmitter would not be necessary since a transmitter, miniature electric field probes, and other circuitry can be PopularScience fabricated together on a microchip. (Microchips can be made extremely small. Most of the size of the standard chips we are used to seeing is in packaging and input/output pins.) Delgado et al. also write about direct brain to computer to brain links, and brain to other brain links.
From an article titled “Thought Control,” by Peter Thomas, in New Scientist, 9 March, 1996: “Last year, at the University of Tottori, near Osaka in Japan, a team of computer scientists lead by Michio Inoue took this idea further by analysing the EEG signals that correspond to a subject concentrating on a specific word… The system depends on a database of EEG patterns taken from a subject concentrating on known words. To work out what the subject is thinking, the computer attempts to match their EEG signals with the patterns in the database. For the moment the computer has a vocabulary of only five words and takes 25 seconds to make its guess. In tests, Inoue claims a success rate of 80 percent, but he is working on improvements…”
Note that the time to guess is not really meaningful by itself (depending on the computer and algorithm) and that significant improvements to both the signal measurements and the pattern matching algorithm are almost surely possible. Another researcher is working to use EEG signals to allow disabled people to control their wheelchairs. Other groups are working on brain implant chips to allow the blind to “see”: “Normann’s group has been developing devices that can be implanted directly in the brain. They consist of an array of 100 `needle’ electrodes resembling a tiny hairbrush. Each needle is less than 2 millimetres long, isolated from its neighbour by a glass sheath and mounted on a silicon base about 4 millimetres square.” A video camera encodes images which are sent to the chip to stimulate the visual cortex. “At the moment, results seem to show that the approach is capable of creating artificial vision, even though it may appear to the subject like a grainy version of reality — similar to looking at the large scoreboards at football stadiums.” (In a sighted person one could implant a chip which reads neural activations as well, and which transmits these signals outside the body. A small imaging device might also be implanted in a subject’s eyeball to allow “looking” out the subject’s eye.)
An implanted device need not necessarily be implanted in the brain. A subdermal device implanted anywhere on the body would still be permanently in the vicinity of the person and able to pick up sound vibrations and electromagnetic emissions. It could also provide tracking data on a person. Academic researchers have already produced fingernail-sized devices of this sort. A Neurophone-type circuit in the chip could even allow voices to be projected into the victim’s mind. (A Neurophone and similar devices apparently allow for “hearing through the skin,” regardless of what other claims are made for them.)
The NIH is currently funding a program in neural prosthesis. The aim of this program is to develop devices to interface with and possibly assume some of the functions of a person’s nervous system. The program includes research on electrode development, stimulation parameters, and materials for implanted devices. It is possible that some devices or techniques may alter people’s time perception. It is interesting to speculate what effects this could be used to create. (After all, time perception is a sense too.)
These scientific analyses do not begin to touch on the human element and the extreme rape of having your very freedom of thought stolen and used against you. While all these techniques are frightening by themselves, they become even more frightening if taken together. Advanced bugging and video surveillance systems are common enough that people generally take their existence for granted. When remote surveillance is combined with remote punishment or reward capability (or any other remote input) the resulting feedback loops allow for the remote “training” of the targeted individual — even in their own home and perhaps unaware it is happening at all. The use of technology to mimic psychiatric illnesses is beyond shameful. Not only are the direct victims violated, but the truly mentally ill are too. It is nonetheless a reality we must deal with. The truly schizophrenic individual who now doubts he has a brain disorder is as much a victim as the perfectly sane person driven to defend or even question his own sanity. In fact, the line can blur since some of these weapons can cause brain damage, in addition to the traumatic stress of torture. This unfortunate reality should not be used to dismiss people’s complaints or deflect attention from the true human rights violations.
Other governments also possess these weapons and abilities. The U.S. government has recently introduced some of these previously more-highly-classified technologies to domestic law enforcement agencies. Criminals and private individuals will have some of these weapons before long, if not already. There are already people selling what are purported to be crude electromagnetic harassment devices. Here is part of a Staff Report Prepared for the Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, from Dec. 1994, dealing with human experimentation by the military. It also discusses the Nuremburg Code, as well as current U.S. policies and laws on human experimentation.
Here is a letter to the Washington Post ombudsman by Julian C. Holmes, from 1992. It is interesting reading and documented with numerous notes and references.
Here is an article about The Secret FISA Court: Rubber Stamping on Rights, from the Covert Action Quarterly. This secret court has the power to authorize both bugs and physical searches of private American homes, based only on an invocation of “national security.” As of the writing of the article, this court had rejected only one out of 7500 spying requests. Most targets of such searches and surveillance have no idea what has happened. An excerpt: “The Supreme Court, however, has never endorsed the concept of a national security exception for physical searches. In 1972, it ruled that the Fourth Amendment prohibits warrantless surveillance of domestic targets. The Court specifically warned that the danger to political dissent is acute where the Government attempts under so vague a concept as the power to protect `domestic security.’ But given the secrecy surrounding the FISA court, even finding a test case to challenge incursion on Fourth Amendment rights may be difficult.”
Some Final Words: These sorts of problems are not anything new in history. The weapons have changed, and the years have advanced, but human nature remains the same. Our institutions have “learned” only very slowly over this time. This does not mean we should simply pretend to be civilized while ignoring the barbarism around us. Especially when our government and basic principles of governance are at issue. In this age of steadily advancing technology and surveillance capabilities it is increasingly important that our laws be fair, rational, and uniformly enforced. Technology will transform our society. We must work to ensure that it transforms us for the better, because it can also be used to create a police state such as the world has never seen. That may sound extreme, but it is the simple truth — and one we do not want to discover too late.
Other points: We need to teach people the crucial distinction between being personally opposed to some behavior and wanting to lock other human beings in cages for engaging in that behavior. Obvious as this point seems, it regularly disappears in “learned” debates. In the case of behaviors like murder, the loss of that distinction does not effectively make a difference. In other cases, though — especially in the case of victimless “crimes” — the distinction is extremely important.
When a single individual can now wreak terrible damage as a terrorist, it is increasingly important that we do not let anyone “fall through the cracks.”
We must avoid entering into an escalating cycle of increasing police and secret police powers and violence by those who will not voluntarily give up their basic rights. (Was Jefferson a terrorist? What is the difference? Where is the line?) Pushing people too hard and too long will turn them into exactly what you were afraid of. Abusive covert agents love this, since it helps them justify their existence and their inflated budgets. They then innocently say “I told you so” about the violence they have in large measure created.
On this page I have discussed ideas in several different, though related, areas. While not exactly a summary, I end with the following sentence, the truth of which should be self-evident: AN AMERICAN CITIZEN TORTURED BY THE U.S. GOVERNMENT SHOULD NOT HAVE TO FIGHT THAT SAME GOVERNMENT EVERY STEP OF THE WAY TO EVEN PROVE IT HAPPENED.