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Thursday, April 24, 2014

'The Men Who Stare at Goats' by Jon Ronson

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( -- The Men Who Stare at Goats book and movie both offer a darkly humorous picture of American military and spy agency interest in paranormal activity.

In his book, Jon Ronson begins by asking why the Intelligence Community would have allowed itself to become entangled with all the craziness.

To understand the rationale behind the madness, I turned to the CIA STAR GATE psychic spy files for some of the answers.

It may seem incredible: much of the story behind the new feature film The Men Who Stare at Goats is based upon secret U.S. government programs to turn paranormal phenomena into operational intelligence.

Now, thanks to a Congressional mandate that took the Central Intelligence Agency by the hand and directed them to release twenty-five years worth of previously hidden documents, the truth about the men who stare at goats, psychic spies and psychokinetic "Jedi warriors" is available for all to see.

"More of this is true than you would believe."

Following a Congressional request to review America's twenty-three year secret foray into psychic warfare, CIA took control, hired a select panel of experts to review a limited selection of program files, and promptly closed the STAR GATE.

As a result of this exorcism of paranormal activity, roughly two-thirds of program files are available to review, and, in despite the use of "black marker" redactions of sensitive information, a large body of psychic scientific research has been declassified.

By late September 1994, STAR GATE research was being conducted by Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC, one of the top defense contractors to the Department of Defense). A major report was presented to the U.S. government titled "Phenomenological Research and Analysis," which presented various scientific reasons paranormal activity should be taken seriously.

The report claims SAIC had "Successfully verified a claim from the Former Soviet Union (FSU) and from the U.S. that it is possible to influence the physiology of an isolated individual exclusively by anomalous mental phenomena ... that is, mental intention of a distant agent appears to cause physiological changes in an isolate individual.

The report later claimed that SAIC:

"Developed and calibrated instrumentation to replicate a physics-type experiment from the FSU that suggests a new form of energy might be responsible as the carrier of anomalous mental phenomena signals."

This "spooky action-at-a-distance" effect seen in the SAIC experiments, inspired a good deal of speculation about the mechanism linking the mind to the body, and beyond.

In early 1994, SAIC prepared a new five-year program plan.

SAIC cited  "strong advancements in the three-fold area of anomalous mental phenomena (AMP), including "insight into foreign activity, breakthroughs in research, and a substantial base of prima facie evidence for AMP's capabilities in applications" as the basis for a renewed effort.

Here are a few of the ideas presented to the U.S. government:

Probable Futures: "Precognition may be the underlying mechanism. If, for some yet unknown reason, humans have access to probable futures rather than actual futures, then the perception appears not to contradict the rules of physics."

Quantum Theory -- Einstein, Poldasky, Rosen Paradox (EPR): "The paradox suggest possible information transport during the collapse of a [quantum] wave function ... [however] ... Brain functioning at room temperatures appears not to be a quantum system."

General Relativity: "The recent resurgence of interest in Einstein's general theory of relativity has led to some startling theoretical conclusions about the nature of space-time again bringing to the forefront the fact that science has not unveiled all the secrets associated with time."

Time and Entropy: "The possibility that macroscopic time or psychological time, the time that we perceive, is actually determined by the change of entropy ... given that we showed experimentally that the total change of entropy is related to the quality of anomalous cognition, this theoretical approach seems most promising."

Novel Potentials: "Recently a series of clever experiments ... showing that a potential can have an effect on a particle even when there was no corresponding force present. The electromagnetic vector and scalar potentials or torsion fields are examples of such novel potentials."

To impact the heart of the goat, an individual would need to remotely influence the autonomic nervous system of the target goat, and, having done so by mental means, reduce or interfere with the beating of the goat's heart. Supporting this idea is a claim that "recent breakthroughs in research indicate ... that the brain reacts similarly to anomalous mental phenomena as it does to other sensorial stimuli, such as light flashes."

Based upon the above, the idea of "goat-staring" might seem a tad less silly, yet highly improbable.

"We are no longer confined to remote viewing [a kind of psychic long-distance perception] as our principle tool and will now develop and use telepathic and psychokinetic skills. An important application of our new Mission Statement will be the development of countermeasure capabilities."

When Jon Ronson began writing his book about high level fascination with "high strangeness" in 2001, I had already been heavily researching the topic for five years.

It wasn't Secretary of Defense Robert Gates appearing on ABC News Nightline in 1995 (as the former Director of the CIA), along with CIA operations officer "Norm," and Dr. Ed May, head of "STAR GATE" intelligence research that set me on this quest, when they confessed to the existence of the psychic spies.

My own "considerable interest" was fueled by on-going discussions of new scientific revelations and speculations growing from "quantum mind" research in the 1990s.

By 1999, it was apparent that many persons previously involved with past programs, or currently involved in the U.S. and U.K. intelligence gathering apparatus, were following along as well. When Jon Ronson wrote about his post-9/11 revelation from former CIA psychic Uri Geller,  which expanded into his exploration of men, goats, and hapless hamsters -- I knew I was on the right track.

Exploring the back story to The Men Who Stare at Goats was the logical next page to uncovering the involvement of intelligence persons in the alternative propulsion community (a politically correct way of referring to scientists attempting to reverse engineer alleged alien technology).

I wrote a brief overview of the journey in a series called Knowing the Future: CIA, 9/11, UFOs, and the Extraterrestrial Presence, now available in a special paperback print edition or for download at Amazon Kindle. Along the way I had been joined by seasoned defense industry professions Nick Cook, of Janes Defence Weekly, and Sharon Weinberger, author of Imaginary Weapons.

As strange as Jon Ronson's Men Who Stare at Goats may seem to the uninitiated, the truth before the legends of the goat staring government psychics gets even more bizarre, with tales of government extraterrestrial contacts in 1947, 1983, and 1992. This "core story" is passed among past and present intelligence officials and government consultants: many who hold very senior positions in the Intelligence Community.

It's turned into a wild ride, with CIA officers, foreign nationals, "forum operatives," a physicist from the Mideast who wants to build worm holes that might someday deliver weapons of mass destruction, the "rich and strange," religious authors who see government paranormal efforts as collusion with the devil, serious journalists, and the like coming together in the new medium of the World Wide Web even as the intelligence community developed new tools to access the Internet for intelligence collection.

Yes, The Men Who Stare at Goats is both strange and true, but it's only the tip of the weirdness iceberg.

Copyright (c) 2012 by Gary S Bekkum / STARstream Research / -- Approved for unlimited redistribution by the author.

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