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Declassified CIA Documents Uncover Soviet Union's Bizarre Paranormal Experimentation Including 'Black Magic' and Telepathic Mind Control

Declassified CIA Documents Uncover Soviet Union's Bizarre Paranormal Experimentation Including 'Black Magic' and Telepathic Mind Control
RichVintage, via Getty Images

Twitter user Emma Best, aka "@NatSecGeek" recently proved the accuracy of her online title.

Somehow, she unearthed some decades-old National Security documents that, in hindsight, make the CIA look like a bunch of Sci-Fi nerds.

In the first of a string of tweets, Best describes the gem that "took four years" for her to get her hands on: a trove of 1977 CIA documents in which the U.S. agency studied the Soviet Union's apparent attempts to give people powers of telepathy.

She closes that first tweet with a nod to FOIA, or the Freedom of Information Act, a U.S. law that allows citizens to request and access public documents.

A quick zoom allows us to see the nuts and bolts of the CIA's findings. Evidently, if they were real and the Russians had possession of them, the U.S. wanted access as well.

It was the space race for mind control tactics.

"Some recent US research suggests that it may be possible to use certain paranormal abilities for military or intelligence purposes.
"There are major uncertainties, however, about the extent to which such abilities exist, their reliability, and their mechanisms of operation."


Another document in the report gets even stranger.

Black Magic was on the table.

"About 1969 the Soviets reportedly established an official group in their covert program devoted to the collecting of information on black magic."
"This group...was assigned the tasks of identifying, locating and evaluating the capabilities of sorcerers, witches, and incantations used by suck individuals."


As the thread continues, Best includes additional documents from the report.

These state the CIA's conviction that the experiments appeared to occur right under the noses of the higher ups in the Soviet military.

"The amazing thing to me is that many prominent Soviet scientests appear so involved politically that they are concerned only with the possibility of their own promotion and do not see what is going on in their own laboratories."
"Their research is very sloppy and often alleged 'discoveries' are later disproven."

Naturally, Twitter was VERY interested in Best's discoveries.

Most could only laugh, seeing such upsetting similarities to Hollywood.

Others anticipated the embarrassment that the CIA would likely feel when this information makes the rounds.

A discovery like this begs the question, If this research from the late 60s looks primitive now, what research happening now in will look primitive in decades to come?

For a look at the United States paranormal efforts, the George Clooney film The Men Who Stare at Goats is available here.

The book by the same name is available here.

"Bizarre military history: In 1979, a crack commando unit was established by the most gifted minds within the U.S. Army. Defying all known laws of physics and accepted military practice, they believed that a soldier could adopt the cloak of invisibility, pass cleanly through walls, and—perhaps most chillingly—kill goats just by staring at them."