Cursed French Bread?Ted Goodman on PhyOrg recounts the strange events of August 16, 1951, when dozens of villagers in the French village of Pont-Saint-Esprit were struck with unexplainable and horrifying hallucinations of fire and snakes and beasts of all kinds, from, what was described as by villagers, eating le pain maudit (“cursed bread”).

Recently on Russia Today, Hank Albarelli, author of A Terrible Mistake: The Murder of Frank Olson and the CIA’s Secret Cold War Experiments, suggests this incident was part of a CIA-funded experiment on foreign soil with LSD. According to Albarelli, five hundred people were affected by the “experiment” — resulting in forty people being taken to a nearby psychiatric institute and at least three suicides.

Albarelli specifically discusses this incident at around 5:10 into this video, and relates it to the work of Frank Olson, the subject of his book.

Posted on Environmental Graffiti:

What looks like a soldier having a bit of fun was actually a series of controlled experiments that lasted for decades. We’re talking about mind control or the use of hallucinogenics such as LSD as weapons used in warfare. Said to have been pioneered by the Nazis; Britain, the United States and others soon followed suit with their own experiments on unwitting soldiers and civilians, the Vietcong and now terrorists…

Images say more than a thousand words; this video taken in 1963 of British soldiers under the influence of LSD surely does:

As the narrator aptly describes,

Fifty minutes after taking the drug, radio communication had become difficult, if not impossible. But the men are still capable of sustained physical effort; however, constructive action was still attempted by those retaining a sense of responsibility despite their physical symptoms. But one hour and ten minutes after taking the drug, with one man climbing a tree to feed the birds, the troop commander gave up, admitting that he could no longer control himself or his men. He himself then relapsed into laughter.

Erin Halliday, SF Gate: Nearly 40 years after widespread fear over recreational abuse of LSD and other hallucinogens forced dozens of scientists to abandon their work, researchers at a handful of major…