Declassified: Unconventional Warfare

Shown here is the cover page for a document addressed to Deputy Director of Plans, from Assistant Director, Scientific Intelligence. Distribution list includes Allen Dulles, and states: "Because we feel the matter may be of concern to you, we are forwarding the attached memo, which discusses the intelligence implications of LSD"

"Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), a drug derived from ergot, is of great strategic significance as a potential agent in unconventional warfare and interrogations. In effective doses, LSD is not lethal, nor does it have color, odor, or taste. It is capable of rendering whole groups of people, including military forces, indifferent to their surroundings and situations, interfering with planning and judgement, and even creating apprehension, uncontrollable confusion and terror.

Of all substances now known to affect the mind, such as mescaline, harmine and others, LSD is by far the most potent. Very minute quantities (upwards of 30 millionths of a gram) create serious mental confusion and sensual disturbances, or render the mind temporarily susceptible to many types of influences. Administration of the drug produces in an individual such mental characteristics of schizophrenia as visual or auditory hallucinations and physiological reactions of dizziness, nausea, dilation of the pupils, and lachrymation. Data, although still very limited, are available which indicate its usefulness in eliciting true and accurate statements from subjects under its influence during interrogation.

The basic material from which LSD is prepared is ergot and the Soviet Bloc has an abundant supply of it. The preparation of LSD has been published openly in considerable detail. Further, Sandoz Ltd., has made available free samples of it for clinical testing both in this country and in Europe. It is therefore assumed that this material is available to the Bloc inasmuch as no effective geographic limitation is known.

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