CIA Magic: The Official CIA Manual of Trickery and Deception

by
Filed under: Illusion and Magic, Propaganda and Disinformation

Submitted by W.J. Elvin III:

How to make someone disappear into thin air? No problem. Take in an evening of CIA magic…


CIA Magic: The Official CIA Manual of Trickery and Deception
Tuesday, 20 October; 6:30 pm
International Spy Museum, Washington DC

“Magic and Intelligence are really kindred arts.”
— John McLaughlin, former deputy director of central intelligence

2009_10_20_magic-200In the early days of the Cold War, the CIA initiated a top-secret program, code-named MKULTRA, to counter Soviet mind-control and interrogation techniques. Realizing that its officers and agents might need to clandestinely deploy newly developed pills, potions, and powders against the adversary, the CIA hired America’s most famous magician, John Mulholland, to write two secret manuals on sleight-of-hand and covert communication techniques.

Twenty years later, virtually all documents related to MKULTRA—including Mulholland’s manuals—were thought destroyed. Only recently, a surviving copy of each manual, complete with photographs and illustrations, was discovered. In their new book, The Official CIA Manual of Trickery and Deception, H. Keith Melton, internationally renowned espionage historian, and Bob Wallace, former director of the CIA’s Office of Technical Services (OTS), reveal for the first time Mulholland’s complete illustrated instructions for CIA officers on the magician’s approach to manipulation and communication.

This eye-opening evening will explore the rich overlap between stage magic and espionage and reveal the “never before seen” secrets of how the magicians’ art also enhanced the spy’s craft.

Tickets: $20 per person. The Museum Complex is located at 800 F Street, NW – between 9th and 8th Streets, Washington DC