Dr. Earl Brian, Governor Ronald Reagan's Secretary of Health, was adamant about his support for mind control centers in California. He felt the behavior modification plan of the Violence Control Centers was important in the prevention of crime.
The Violence Control Center was actually the brain child of William Herrmann as part of a pacification plan for California. A counter insurgency expert for Systems Development Corporation and an advisor to Governor Reagan, Herrmann worked with the Stand Research Institute, the RAND Corporation, and the Hoover Center on Violence. Herrman was also a CIA agent who is now serving an eight year prison sentence for his role in a CIA counterfeiting operation. He was also directly linked with the Iran-Contra affair according to government records and Herrmann's own testimony.
In 1970, Herrmann worked with Colston Westbrook as his CIA control officer when Westbrook formed and implemented the Black Cultural Association at the Vacaville Medical Facility, a facility which in July experienced the death of three inmates who were forcibly subjected to behavior modification drugs. The Black Cultural Association was ostensibly an education program designed to instill black pride identity in prisons, the Association was really a cover for an experimental behavior modification pilot project designed to test the feasibility of programming unstable prisoners to become more manageable.
Westbrook worked for the CIA in Vietnam as a psychological warfare expert, and as an advisor to the Korean equivalent of the CIA and for the Lon Nol regime in Cambodia. Between 1966 and 1969, he was an advisor to the Vietnamese Police Special Branch under the cover of working as an employee of Pacific Architects and Engineers.
His "firm" contracted the building of the interrogation/torture centers in every province of South Vietnam as part of the CIA's Phoenix Program. The program was centered around behavior modification experiments to learn how to extract information from prisoners of war, a direct violation of the Geneva Accords.
Westbrook's most prominent client at Vacaville was Donald DeFreeze, who be tween 1967 and 1969, had worked for the Los Angeles Police Department's Public Disorder Intelligence unit and later became the leader of the Symbionese Liberation Army. Many authorities now believe that the Black Cultural Association at Vacaville was the seedling of the SLA. Westbrook even designed the SLA logo, the cobra with seven heads, and gave De Freeze his African name of Cinque. The SLA was responsible for the assassination of Marcus Foster, superintendent of School in Oakland and the kidnapping of Patty Hearst.
As a counterinsurgency consultant for Systems Development Corporation, a security firm, Herrmann told the Los Angeles Times that a good computer intelligence system "would separate out the activist bent on destroying the system" and then develop a master plan "to win the hearts and minds of the people". The San Francisco-based Bay Guardian, recently identified Herrmann as an international arms dealer working with Iran in 1980, and possibly involved in the October Surprise. Herrmann is in an English prison for counterfeiting. He allegedly met with Iranian officials to ascertain whether the Iranians would trade arms for hostages held in Lebanon.
The London Sunday Telegraph confirmed Herrmann's CIA connections, tracing them from 1976 to 1986. He also worked for the FBI. This information was revealed in his London trial.
In the 1970's, Dr. Brian and Herrmann worked together under Governor Reagan on the Center for the Study and Reduction of Violence, and then, a decade later, again worked under Reagan. Both men have been identified as working for Reagan with the Iranians.
The Violence Center, however, died an agonizing death. Despite the Ervin Senate Committee investigation and chastation of mind control, the experiments continued. But when the Watergate scandal broke in the early 1970's, Washington felt it was too politically risky to continue to push for mind control centers.
Top doctors began to withdraw from the proposal because they felt that there were not enough safeguards. Even the Law Enforcement Assistance Agency, which funded the program, backed out, stating, the proposal showed "little evidence of established research ability of the kind of level necessary for a study of this cope".
Eventually it became known that control of the Violence Center was not going to rest with the University of California, but instead with the Department of Corrections and other law enforcement officials. This information was released publicly by the Committee Opposed to Psychiatric Abuse of Prisoners. The disclosure of the letter resulted in the main backers of the program bowing out and the eventual demise of the center.
Dr. Brian's final public statement on the matter was that the decision to cut off funding represented "a callous disregard for public safety". Though the Center was not built, the mind control experiments continue to this day.
(NEXT: What these torturous drugs do.)
Go To Part Seven of the Series
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