Sexual deviance, electronically controlled sharks, mind-control and satellite surveillance were all revealed to be happening by the FBI, CIA, NSA and more during the early years of the Freedom of Information Act in the USA.

Several weeks ago I came across a book, published in 1982, of Freedom of Information Act disclosures from America.

There are hundreds of examples of requests, and their disclosures, which had been made from when the FOIA was passed in 1966. Some had been made and covered by the media, others were from private citizens.

The book ‘Former Secrets: Government Records Made Public Through the Freedom of Information Act’ details some of the major disclosures from federal agencies.

Unfortunately, the book did not say when the disclosures happened, although they would have been before 1982.

There are two copies on Amazon if anyone is interested in purchasing it. 

Friendly journalists

Body: FBI

Disclosure: Records showing that the FBI used friendly journalists to place stories in the American Press against Jane Fonda, Tom Hayden, David Dellinger, the Black Panthers and others.

Smear campaigns

Body: FBI

Disclosure: Internal documents revealing that the Bureau conducted a smear campaign against Elijah Muhammad, Malcolm X, and many Black Muslims, by sending anonymous letters alleging participation in adulterous affairs.

Anonymous letter

Body: FBI

Disclosure: An FBI “anonymous letter” to Martin Luther King, Jr., implying that derogatory information would be released unless King killed himself. Existence of the letter was first revealed during the I.S Senate Church Committee investigation.

Sexual misconduct

Body: FBI

Disclosure: Heavily censored FBI documents on J. Edgar Hoover containing allegations of sexual misconduct by politicians and other well-known people.

Atomic bombs

Body: Defense Nuclear Agency

Disclosure: Records revealing that, as a soldier in 1951, Rob Campbell was exposed to radiation in an atomic bomb test in the Marshall Islands.

Radio sharks

Body: Department of the Navy

Disclosure: Information on “Project Headspear,” in which the Navy implanted electrodes in sharks so they could be steered by radio signals. Human recruits were substituted in the final test because not enough sharks were available.

 Chunky monkeys

Body: Department of the Navy

Disclosure: Test results of Monkeys exposed to Project ELF (Extremely Low Frequency) revealing that male monkeys experienced a 10 percent weight gain; female monkeys had lower blood triglyceride levels.

Biological warfare

Body: Department of the Army

Disclosure:Information showing that the Army dropped 22 tons of tiny glass beads and fluorescent-treated cork particles over a 4,800 square mile area of Texas in 1966, in simulated chemical and biological warfare.

Mind control

Body: Center for National Security Studies

Disclosure: Information on CIA-conducted research into various mind control techniques to further its objectives. Among the contemplated techniques were hypnosis, chemical gases, ex-transensory perception, electric shock and blinding flashes of light. In one such project, named ARTICHOKE, the Agency studied techniques designed to induce unwitting subjected to commit assassinations.

Trained seals

Body: CIA

Disclosure: Documents revealing that the CIA had trained seal and otters, monitored “bioplasma fields” of agents and tested the sonar of electric fish for new espionage methods CIA researchers also worked on developing weapons, such as poison pellets, electric stun guns and calibrated black jackets.

Drug testing

Body: Department of Defense

Disclosure: Experimentation on soldiers with the drug “BZ,” considered to be ten times more powerful than the hallucinogen, LSD.

Natural causes

Body: CIA

Disclosed: Documents revealing that at the height of the Cold War, the CIA sought to “knock off key guys” through such “natural causes” as cancer and heart attacks, and that it considered performing experiments on terminal cancer patients under the guise of “legitimate medical work”

Satellite surveillance

Body: CIA

Disclosed: CIA records on satellite surveillance in the late 1960s indicating that the CIA used satellites to observe American students engaged in demonstrations against the Vietnam War.

Intercepted communications

Body: NSA

Disclosed: Internal documents on the NSA about an illegal American operation in which NSA and British intelligence swapped tapes of intercepted communications of dissidents and anti-war protesters, such a s Dr. Martin Luther King, Jane Fonda and Dr. Benjamin Spock.

Socialist burglaries

Body: FBI

Disclosed: Reports showing that the FBI had burglarized the New York City offices of the SWP (Socialist Workers Party) nearly 100 times from 1960-1966 and photographed files on virtually every aspect of the Party’s business. The Justice Department had denied such actions.


I am a journalist and author. I am a journalist at the UK edition of WIRED magazine. In 2015, my first book Freedom of Information: A Practical Guide for UK Journalists, was published. My second book Reed Hastings: Building Netflix, was published in March 2020. I created FOI Directory in 2012 and have maintained it in my spare time ever since.