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William S. Burroughs on Electronic Mind Control

Black Magic Mind War

By William Burroughs

Crawdaddy, July, 1976

      Now anyone who has lived for any time in countries like Morocco where magic is widely practiced has probably seen a curse work. I have. However, the curses tend to be hit or miss, depending on the skill and power of the operator and the susceptibility of the victim. And that isn't good enough for the CIA or similar organization: "Bring us the ones that work not sometimes but every time." So what is the logical step forward? TO DEVISE MACHINES THAT CAN CONCENTRATE AND DIRECT PSYCHIC FORCE WITH PREDICTABLE EFFECTS. (See the chapter in the Iron Curtain book on PSYCHIC GENERATORS.) I suggest that what the CIA is or was working on at the top secret Nevada installation may be described as COMPUTERIZED black magic. If curse A doesn't make it, Curse Program B automatically goes into operation and so on.

      I recommend to your attention a book called The Mind Masters by John Rossman, a Signet New American Library paperback. This is ostensibly a fantastic science fiction novel, interesting more for its content than for its style, that may well contain some real inside information. The story concerns a researcher who has, to put it mildly, been disillusioned by his work on Project Pandora, an American psychic training center run by a Colonel Pickett, who is strongly reminiscent of the mad General Ripper in Doctor Strangelove, right down to the cigar. Only he is unloosing psychic warfare rather than nuclear bombs, having convinced himself that this form of warfare is more effective and more easily controlled for elitist objectives. The disillusioned researcher, one Britt St. Vincent, is contact d by Mero, a private institute dedicated to opposing these black magic centers. (It should be obvious that only BLACK magic has "military applications.")

      After he is taken to Mero's secret headquarters ... he recalls for Britt how the CIA, while making an electronic sweep of the U.S. embassy in Moscow for listening devices, discovered some very unusual electromagnetic emanations pulsing through the building. (Only a months ago it came out that the Soviets had stepped up the power to a point where Embassy officials and their families were in danger from the high-voltage microwave radiation, which can cause confusion, migraines, and even death). Not long after, the CIA confirmed that this was in fact part of a much larger psychic attack on the Embassy.... Britt learns that similar psychic research is still advancing rapidly in China, France, Israel, Egypt, South Africa and Chile, in addition to the United States and Russia. "Although these scattered groups are currently working to beat each other to the secret of powers that will give them world control, there is a good possibility that they could even now join forces and make a COMBINED bid for world control and at this moment they appear to stand an almost even chance of succeeding if they join forces."

       "And what will the future look like if such groups actually exist and if they do combine and take over? An elitist world state very much along the lines laid down by the NAZIS. At the top would be a theocracy trained in PSYCHIC CONTROL TECHNIQUES IMPLEMENTED BY COMPUTERIZED ELECTRONIC DEVICES THAT WOULD RENDER OPPOSITION PSYCHOLOGICALLY AND PHYSIOLOGICALLY IMPOSSIBLE. Entry to this privileged class would be permitted only to those whose dedication to the world state was absolute and unquestioning. In short, you don't get in by merit or ability but by being an ALL-AROUND 100 PERCENT SHIT. Under this ruling elite of power addicts would be an anonymous service collective of functionaries, managers and bureaucrats. And below them the slave workers. There would be no place for dissent or independent research. The troublesome artist would be eliminated or absorbed. The elite lives happily ever after, at the top of a control state that makes 1984 seem cozy and nostalgic.