PROJECT MKULTRA, THE CIA'S PROGRAM OF
RESEARCH IN BEHAVIORAL
AUGUST 3, 1977
SELECT COMMITTEE ON
AND SUBCOMMITTEE ON HEALTH
OF THE COMMITTEE ON HUMAN RESOURCES
The committees met, pursuant to notice, at 9:07 a.m. in
room 1202, Dirksen Senate Office Building, Senator Daniel K. Inouye
(chairman of the Select Committee on Intelligence)
Present: Senators Inouye (presiding), Kennedy,
Goldwater, Bayh, Hathaway, Huddleston, Hart, Schweiker, Case, Garn,
Chafee, Lugar and Wallop.
Also present: William G. Miller, staff
director, Select Committee on Intelligence; Dr. Lawrence Horowitz, staff
director, Subcommittee on Health and Scientific Research; and professional
staff members of both committees.
The Senate Select Committee on Intelligence is meeting today and is joined
by the Subcommittee on Health and Scientific Research chaired by Senator
Edward Kennedy of Massachusetts and Senator Richard Schweiker of
Pennsylvania. Senator Hathaway and Senator Chafee are members of both
committees. We are to hear testimony from the Director of Central
Intelligence, Adm. Stansfield Turner, and from other Agency witnesses on
issues concerning new documents supplied to the committee in the last week
on drug testing conducted by the Central Intelligence Agency.
should be made clear from the outset that in general, we are focusing on
events that happened over 12 or as long as 25 years ago. It should be
emphasized that the programs that are of greatest concern have stopped and
that we are reviewing these past events in order to better understand what
statutes and other guidelines might be necessary to prevent the recurrence
of such abuses in the future. We also need to know and understand what is
now being done by the CIA in the field of behavioral research to be
certain that no current abuses are occurring.
I want to commend
Admiral Turner for his full cooperation with this committee and with the
Subcommittee on Health in recognizing that this issue needed our
attention. The CIA has assisted our committees and staffs in their
investigative efforts and in arriving at remedies which will serve the
best interests of our country.
The reappearance of
reports of the abuses of the drug testing program and reports of other
previously unknown drug programs and projects for behavioral control
underline the necessity for effective oversight procedures both in the
executive branch and in the Congress. The Select Committee on Intelligence
has been working very closely with President Carter, the Vice President,
and Admiral Turner and his associates in developing basic concepts for
statutory guidelines which will govern all activities of the intelligence
agencies of the United States.
In fact, it is my expectation that
the President will soon announce his decisions on how he has decided the
intelligence agencies of the United States shall be organized. This
committee will be working closely with the President and Admiral Turner in
placing this new structure under the law and to develop effective
It is clear that effective oversight requires
that information must be full and forthcoming. Full and timely information
is obviously necessary if the committee and the public is to be confident
that any transgressions can be dealt with quickly and
One purpose of this hearing is to give the committee
and the public an understanding of what new information has been
discovered that adds to the knowledge already available from previous
Church and Kennedy inquiries, and to hear the reasons why these documents
were not available to the Church and Kennedy committees. It is also the
purpose of this hearing to address the issues raised by any additional
illegal or improper activities that have emerged from the files and to
develop remedies to prevent such improper activities from occurring
Finally, there is an obligation on the part of both this
committee and the CIA to make every effort to help those individuals or
institutions that may have been harmed by any of these improper or illegal
activities. I am certain that Admiral Turner will work with this committee
to see that this will be done.
I would now like to welcome the most
distinguished Senator from Massachusetts, the chairman of the Health
Subcommittee, Senator Kennedy.
Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman. We are delighted to join together in
this very important area of public inquiry and public
Some 2 years ago, the Senate Health Subcommittee heard
chilling testimony about the human experimentation activities of the
Central Intelligence Agency. The Deputy Director of the CIA revealed that
over 30 universities and institutions were involved in an "extensive
testing and experimentation" program which included covert drug tests on
unwitting citizens "at all social levels, high and low, native Americans
and foreign." Several of these tests involved the administration of LSD to
"unwitting subjects in social situations."
At least one death, that
of Dr. Olson, resulted from these activities. The Agency itself
acknowledged that these tests made little scientific sense. The agents
doing the monitoring were not qualified scientific observers. The tests
subjects were seldom accessible beyond the first hours of the test. In a
number of instances, the test subject became ill for hours or days, and
effective followup was impossible.
Other experiments were
equally offensive. For example, heroin addicts were enticed into
participating in LSD experiments in order to get a reward --
Perhaps most disturbing of all was the fact that the extent
of experimentation on human subjects was unknown. The records of all these
activities were destroyed in January 1973, at the instruction of then CIA
Director Richard Helms. In spite of persistent inquiries by both the
Health Subcommittee and the Intelligence Committee, no additional records
or information were forthcoming. And no one -- no single individual --
could be found who remembered the details, not the Director of the CIA,
who ordered the documents destroyed, not the official responsible for the
program, nor any of his associates.
We believed that the record,
incomplete as it was, was as complete as it was going to be. Then one
individual, through a Freedom of Information request, accomplished what
two U.S. Senate committees could not. He spurred the agency into finding
additional records pertaining to the CIA's program of experimentation with
human subjects. These new records were discovered by the agency in March.
Their existence was not made known to the Congress until July.
records reveal a far more extensive series of experiments than had
previously been thought. Eighty-six universities or institutions were
involved. New instances of unethical behavior were revealed.
intelligence community of this Nation, which requires a shroud of secrecy
in order to operate, has a very sacred trust from the American people. The
CIA's program of human experimentation of the fifties and sixties violated
that trust. It was violated again on the day the bulk of the agency's
records were destroyed in 1973. It is violated each time a responsible
official refuses to recollect the details of the program. The best
safeguard against abuses in the future is a complete public accounting of
the abuses of the past.
I think this is illustrated, as Chairman
Inouye pointed out. These are issues, are questions that happened in the
fifties and sixties, and go back some 15, 20 years ago, but they are front
page news today, as we see in the major newspapers and on the television
and in the media of this country; and the reason they are, I think, is
because it just continuously begins to trickle out, sort of, month after
month, and the best way to put this period behind us, obviously, is to
have the full information, and I think that is the desire of Admiral
Turner and of the members of this committee.
Intelligence Agency drugged American citizens without their knowledge or
consent. It used university facilities and personnel without their
knowledge. It funded leading researchers, often without their
These institutes, these individuals, have a right to
know who they are and how and when they were used. As of today, the Agency
itself refuses to declassify the names of those institutions and
individuals, quite appropriately, I might say, with regard to the
individuals under the Privacy Act. It seems to me to be a fundamental
responsibility to notify those individuals or institutions, rather. I
think many of them were caught up in an unwitting manner to do research
for the Agency. Many researchers, distinguished researchers, some of our
most outstanding members of our scientific community, involved
this network, now
really do not know whether they were involved or not, and it seems to me
that the whole health and climate in terms of our university and our
scientific and health facilities are entitled to that response.
I intend to do all I can to persuade the Agency to, at the very least,
officially inform those institutions and individuals involved.
years ago, when these abuses were first revealed, I introduced
legislation, with Senator Schweiker and Senator Javits, designed to
minimize the potential for any similar abuses in the future. That
legislation expanded the jurisdiction of the National Commission on Human
Subjects of Biomedical and Behavioral Research to cover all federally
funded research involving human subjects. The research initially was just
directed toward HEW activities, but this legislation covered DOD as well
as the CIA.
This Nation has a biomedical and behavioral research
capability second to none. It has had for subjects of HEW funded research
for the past 3 years a system for the protection of human subjects of
biomedical research second to none, and the Human Experimentation
Commission has proven its value. Today's hearings and the record already
established underscore the need to expand its jurisdiction.
supported that legislation in 1975, and it passed the Senate unanimously
last year. I believe it is needed in order to assure all our people that
they will have the degree of protection in human experimentation that they
deserve and have every right to expect.
INOUYE. Thank you very much. Now we will proceed with the
hearings. Admiral Turner?
statement of Admiral Turner follows.]
Prepared Statement of CIA Director Stansfield Turner
of CIA Director Stansfield