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In Memory of George A. Romero

Remote Viewing & Men Who Stare at Goats

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Have you heard of Remote Viewing? If you have, you probably read the book or watched the movie Men Who Stare at Goats. But more than likely you haven’t. It wasn’t until I was doing research for one of my novels that I stumbled upon the subject of Remote Viewing. I was so fascinated by my reading that I abandoned the original research and spent the next several days delving into the subject. In fact, I was so enthralled by Remote Viewing that I wrote a novel around the premise.

So, what is Remote Viewing, you ask? Haven’t seen the movie, then? Well, in plain terms, it is the ability to perceive unseen objects, events, persons or locations that are hidden from physical view and separated by distances through paranormal or extrasensory perception (ESP). Okay, that’s not as clear as I’d like, so let me give you an example, let me paint the picture if you will.

A remote viewer sits in a room. The viewer is told that in one hour, he/she will receive a photograph. They are told nothing else; not details are provided, nothing at all to give any clue as to what will be the subject of the photograph. The viewer closes their eyes and concentrates. After a few minutes, the viewer conjures an image. She/he grabs a piece of paper and draws from memory a picture of a man in mid-jump across a divide. After one hour, the viewer is presented with a photograph of a man leaping across drainage ditch in the desert.

In another example, a viewer is given an arbitrary code, such as DL9P-5N4W. The code has no meaning and is comprised of random numbers and letters. The purpose is to give the viewer something to focus their attention on a single object in the universe. The viewer receives their code and begins to concentrate, focusing in on their impressions. After a few minutes, the viewer draws an image of a long rectangular structure. The viewer is then given an envelope containing a photo that the code was assigned to. The photo is of one of the main structures at the McMurdo Station in Antarctica.

You’re getting the picture now. Can you image the possibilities of such a set of skills in the hands of the government? Well, the U.S. Government could and did.

The first Remote Viewing programs came about because the CIA grew concerned about reports of Russian investigations into psychic phenomenon. Between 1969 and 1971 the US determined that the Russians were very much engaged in some sort of psychic espionage research and it was suggested that the Russians were spending the equivalent of two million US dollars a year on whatever they were working on.  Just a few years later, it was estimated that the Russians were spending five times as much on their research. The amounts of money and personnel devoted suggested that the Russians must have experienced some successes.

The project went under several names over the years since its induction; Scanate and INSCOM by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), Sunstreak, Grillframe, Center Lane the more popular Stargate by the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA). The program originally consisted of two separate activities; an operational unit that employed remote viewers to train and perform remote viewing intelligence and a research program maintained separately from the operational unit with its mission to monitor the results and produce data reports.

Because the Soviets were spending so much money on the project, the U.S. decided they were on to something.  The initial program was funded by the CIA. It was called Scanate, short for scan by coordinate. The starter program saw some progress and soon Stanford Research Institute (SRI) was beginning to research remote viewing.

The research project was headed by some men that were once with the NSA and considered themselves Scientologists. They focused on a few folks from the Church of Scientology who were thought to possess some sort of psychic abilities.  Any of these individuals who showed signs of psychic talent were trained to harness and use those talents for psychic warfare. These viewers were required to show at least 65% accuracy to qualify for the program.

In the late seventies the Army Assistant Chief of Staff for Intelligence System Exploitation Detachment was charged with evaluating what damage the Russians could do with remote viewing. I don’t know what they called the program then but it consisted of soldiers and civilians that were thought to possess natural psychic abilities. The SRI program was integrated into that program and hundreds of remote viewing experiments were carried out at SRI well into the eighties.

In the early eighties the program was retitled Center Lane Project and key personnel from the previous projects started developing a set of instructions which would theoretically allow anyone to be trained to produce accurate target data. The existence of the program was reported in the mid-eighties by a columnist and shortly after, the National Academy of Science's National Research Council immediately launched an evaluation of the remote viewing. The results were very unfavorable and the Army funding ended.

The program was just renamed and was transferred to the DIA's Scientific and Technical Intelligence Directorate. The program was transferred to Science Applications International Corporation in the early nineties and was again renamed to Stargate. There were more than forty people on staff, including twenty-three remote viewers, who served in the program at different times. At its peak there were as many as seven full-time viewers. Three psychics worked out of Fort Meade for the CIA up until the mid-nineties. The psychics were sometimes made available for other government agencies that knew the right people and requested their services.

During the last decade, the project was plagued by poor unit morale and poor performance and very few accurate results. In 1995, the program was ordered to be transferred back to the CIA, and the CIA was instructed to conduct a retrospective review of the program.  The American Institute for Research (AIR) was contracted to evaluate the program. The final recommendation by AIR was to terminate Stargate. The CIA found no cases where psychic phenomenon was responsible for providing any verifiable, useful intelligence and soon after, Stargate was no more.

The Stargate Project was claimed to have been terminated in 1995. Here is the official statement:

The foregoing observations provide a compelling argument against continuation of the program within the intelligence community. Even though a statistically significant effect has been observed in the laboratory, it remains unclear whether the existence of a paranormal phenomenon, remote viewing, has been demonstrated. The laboratory studies do not provide evidence regarding the origins or nature of the phenomenon, assuming it exists, nor do they address an important methodological issue of inter-judge reliability.

Further, even if it could be demonstrated unequivocally that a paranormal phenomenon occurs under the conditions present in the laboratory paradigm, these conditions have limited applicability and utility for intelligence gathering operations. For example, the nature of the remote viewing targets are vastly dissimilar, as are the specific tasks required of the remote viewers. Most importantly, the information provided by remote viewing is vague and ambiguous, making it difficult, if not impossible, for the technique to yield information of sufficient quality and accuracy of information for actionable intelligence. Thus, we conclude that continued use of remote viewing.*

But what if Stargate actually was a success and in an attempt to keep these abilities a secret, the above statement was issued as disinformation? What if Stargate not only worked, but the formula to train ordinary people without any paranormal abilities to master remote viewing? I bet you’d like the answers to these questions. The answers play out on the pages of my novel, Project Hindsight. Get your copy today. The truth is out there.

 

*"An Evaluation of Remote Viewing: Research and Applications", American Institutes for Research, Sept. 29, 1995