Four former members of a secret CIA behavioral control project were subpoenaed yesterday to testify publicly about drug tests and other human mind-control experiments conducted in the 1950s and 1960s.
The subpoenas were issued by Sen. Edward M. Kennedy's Subcommittee of Health and Scientific Research after one of the four, Walter P. Pasternak, did not show up at a closed subcommittee session.
The subpoenas are for Sept. 9.
Kennedy (D-Mass.) and Richard S. Schweiker (R-Pa.) indicated after the session that Pasternak a former CIA employee had gone into hiding after notifying investigator 24 hours earlier that he would appear.
Pasternak has been linked to one of the more bizarre projects in MK-ULTRA, the code name for the intelligence agency's mind control experiments.
Senate investigators have receipts signed by the former CIA employee for $2,000 in $100 bills that were distributed to persons involved in "Operation Midnight Climax." That project involved alleged prostitues and drug given to unwitting persons lured into a "safehouse" operated by the CIA in San Francisco.
Pasternak has also provided the subcommittee with a somewhat unclear account of the activities of the Society for the Investigation of Human Ecology, a CIA-funded research group that conducted human behavior experiments.
In addition to Pasternak, the senators subpoenaed Dr. Sidney Gottlieb, a retired CIA official who ran MK-ULTRA; Dr. Robert Lashbrook, a former CIA chemist who now teaches at the University of California in Santa Barbara, and Dr. Charles Geschickter, a former CIA consultant aand professor emeritus at Georgetown University.
Details of MK-ULTRA have been widely publicized since the CIA released nearly 8,000 pages of recently discovered documents relating to the experiments. In San Francisco yesterday, CIA Director Stansfield Turner called the drug and brothel activities "abhorrent" and said the number of such CIA operations now is "zero."
Knowledgeable sources indicated yesterday that the CIA also may have taken an active part in germ warfare experiments run by the Army from its bilogical warfare center at Fort Detrick, Md.
That information is believed contained in files on three other CIA projects known as MK-SEARCH, MK-CHICKWICK and MK-OFTEN. Files on all three have been promised to the subcommitee by Turner.
Among the MK-ULTRA documents still not released is a list of stock-piled "exotic pathogens," according to one source.
The CIA also has drawn up a classified list of 86 institutions which it said were used during the behavioral experimentation in MK-ULTRA. One of those, according to knowledgeable sources, is the Smithsonian Institution. What part it played could not be learned.
"To the best of our knowledge the Smithsonian was not a knowing participant in any project of the CIA," a Smithsonian spokesman said yesterday.
Among the thousands of pages of documents which have been made available by the CIA on MK-ULTRA are descriptions of a number of odd experiments. In one, CIA researchers isolated and collected "sizable accounts" of tick venom, which can cause muscle paralysis. One agency memo suggested using the insect venom as a knockout agent to induce what the memo writer called "involuntary sleep."
Another memo described a chemical under investigation, known as LSE, as producing the effect of "a reversible chemical lobotomy." A 1953 report said 429 experiments were carried out with this drug on psychotics and non-psychotics.
A June 29, 1954, memo by Gottlieh described consultant Geschickter as having supplied misleading information to the Internal Revenue Service Geschickter was paid by MK-ULTRA but, according to the memo, had to report "that he had earned the fee performing consultations with an "anonymous person," since the Agency contributions had been so designated on the books of the Fund."
The "Fund" was Geschickter's private fund, through which the CIA passed $375,000 to a building expansion project at Georgetown University for work it wanted to do there in "biological and chemical warfare." Geschickter could not be reached for comment.