The only link that I’ve come across regarding any connection between the Atomic Energy Commission (Manhattan Project to create the nuclear bomb) and mind control interests was one that Arnie Lerma found.
Dr. J. Robert Oppenheimer, director of the Los Alamos Laboratory and responsible for the research and design of an atomic bomb presented a paper called Analogy in Science to the American Psychological Association at its 63rd Annual Meeting in San Francisco, September 1955, it was published in March of 1956.
It’s often sourced that as part of the opening address he expressed some thoughts on the subject of psychology and control of people.
The following appeared in the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists of May 1959, in an article titled: The Ethics of Tachistoscopy* by Arthur J. Bachrach.
*Tachistoscopy – an apparatus for use in exposing visual stimuli, as pictures, letters, or words, for an extremely brief period, the idea of which was incorporated into television subliminal advertising techniques.
Arthur J. Bachrach quotes Oppenheimer, but shortens down the first sentence (you’ll see in a minute) –
…the psychologist can hardly do anything without realizing that for him the acquisition of knowledge opens up the most terrifying prospects of controlling what people do and how they feel. This is true for all of you who are engaged in practice…I can see that the physicists pleas that what he discovers [the nuclear bomb] be used with humanity and be used wisely will seem trivial compared to those pleas which you will have to make and for which you will be responsible.”
Bachrach then said about what Oppenheimer said –
The possibility of controlling human behavior becomes a more terrifying prospect than the control of nuclear reactions.
Arnie Lerma correctly noted that what Bachrach said: ‘the possibility of controlling human behavior‘ belonged at the TOP of the list of “WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION” – ahead of the atomic bomb.
I have obtained the original article and here is a PDF of it – analogy in science oppenheimer 1955 american psychologist
Here’s the full quote in context –
There are other ways in which we are brothers.
In the last ten years the physicists have been extraordinarily noisy about the immense powers which, largely through their efforts, but through other efforts as well, have come into the possession of man, powers notably and strikingly for very large scale and dreadful destruction. We have spoken of our responsibilities and of our obligations to society in terms that sound to me very provincial, because the psychologist can hardly do anything without realizing that for him the acquisition of knowledge opens up the most terrifying prospects of controlling what people do and how they think and how they behave and how they feel. This is true for all of you who are engaged in practice, and as the corpus of psychology gains in certitude and subtlety and skill, I can see that the physicist’s pleas that what he discovers be used with humanity and be used wisely will seem rather trivial compared to those pleas which you will have to make and for which you will have to be responsible.
But, what else Oppenheimer said is even more interesting in light of that it’s obvious that he knew about the then ongoing secret ‘projects’ (like this 1951 meeting in Canada was about).
I need to be cautious in citing parallels in psychology; but certainly the use of hypnosis, the use of drugs, are typical extensions into unfamiliar realms of human experience which just bring out characteristics of psychological phenomena that are largely lost in day-to-day experience. There is an example which may be only a physicist’s idea of a perfect experiment. It is the work that was done at McGill in the last years on the effects of reducing sensory stimuli, with very simple arrangements to change the level of stimulation; these produce most striking and almost frighteningly great, though essentially temporary, changes in memory, in the intellectual and cognitive life of the subjects. This is again an example of carrying to an extreme something which is indeed encountered in ordinary experience but which only the patience and the abstractness of experimental enquiry is likely to make manifest.
I think it’s pretty beyond-the-pale that he portray the McGill experiments as in any way a good thing, but, this is probably just another way that he was trying to salve his own conscience for going along with unleashing the nuclear bomb upon humanity.
Oppenheimer and Groves
See my new Encyclopedia of the ‘Bad Guys” entry on Donald Ewen Cameron where you’ll learn what the real point was of the experiments at McGill.