25 CIA Blunders They Would Rather You Forget

Posted by , Updated on October 5, 2022

Although most conspiracy theories don’t hold water, you don’t have to go around looking for conspiracy theories to see that governments mess up just as much as anybody. With a history of supporting dictators, performing dubious experiments, and just generally being shady it’s no surprise that the CIA gets a lot of negative press. But hey, what do you expect? Being shady is part of the job. These are 25 secrets and blunders of the CIA that they would rather you forget about.


During Operation Mongoose the CIA considered placing thallium salts in Fidel Castro's shoes so that his beard would fall out

CIA blundersSoure: wikipedia

In the 1950s the CIA assisted with a plot to assassinate Iraqi prime minister Abd al-Karim Qasim. Guess who did the shooting? Saddam Hussein.

CIA blundersSource: wikipedia

The CIA released a parody of Tom Clancy's The Hunt For Red October

CIA blundersSource: gawker.com

The CIA recruited Nazi scientists, some of who had been convicted at the Nuremberg war trials, to work for them following World War II. Their experience with mind control was then used on the CIA's own program called MKUltra

CIA blundersSource: wikipedia

During the 60s the CIA performed a study on college students that subjected them to "humiliating psychological experiments". One of the subjects was future unabomber Ted Kaczynski.

CIA blundersSource: theatlantic.com

When Mohammad Mosaddegh, the democratically elected Iranian prime minister nationalized the country's oil industry and basically removed foreign oil companies from its soil the CIA organized a coup and overthrew him.

CIA blundersSource: wikipedia

The CIA handed out Viagra in order to bribe warlords in Afghanistan

CIA blundersSource: washingtonpost.com

A CIA program called "Operation Midnight Climax" involved enlisting prostitutes to lure men into San Francisco safe houses where they were injected with LSD. This was meant to study the effects on unconsenting individuals

CIA blundersSource: wikipedia

During the 80s the CIA allegedly facilitated cocaine sales in Los Angeles during an operation against the Sandinistas in Nicaragua

CIA blundersSource: wikipedia

Operation Northwoods was a proposal put forth by the Pentagon suggesting that the CIA perform acts of terrorism in the United States and then blame Cuba. The proposal was rejected by the Kennedy administration.

CIA blundersSource: wikipedia

During the Vietnam War the CIA implemented Operation Phoenix in which up to 30,000 people were "neutralized" aka executed for suspicions of association with the enemy

CIA blundersSource: wikipedia

The CIA actually had a torture manual that stressed the important of psychological torture. It explained that the fear of pain is usually worse than the pain itself because people underestimate their ability to withstand suffering.

CIA blundersSource: science.howstuffworks.com

Gary Webb, a journalist who exposed some shady dealings of the CIA and Reagan administration, died from 2 gunshot wounds in his head. It was ruled a suicide.

CIA blundersSource: wikipedia

In 2003 the CIA arrested a German/Lebanese citizen, flew him to Afghanistan, tortured him, and later released him. They acknowledged their mistake and he was represented by the ACLU in court but it was dismissed due to "state secrets". Recently, the European Court of Human Rights condemned the actions of the CIA and ruled in his favor.

CIA blundersSource: wikipedia

The A-12 Blackbird was an aircraft built for one purpose - spy on the Soviets. The only problem was that the Soviet Union was the only place on Earth with titanium pure enough to build the aircraft. So basically the CIA had to spy on the Soviet Union in order to spy on the Soviet Union.

CIA blundersSource: wikipedia

In 1954 the CIA toppled the first democratically elected president of Guatemala following the revolution and installed a military dictator. In return they got some prime Guatemalan real estate.

CIA blundersSource: wikipedia

In 1962 the CIA tipped off the South African police as to Nelson Mandela's location which led to his 27 year incarceration

CIA blundersSource: articles.chicagotribune.com

In 1953 Frank Olson, an American scientist, was unwittingly injected with LSD by the CIA. He died a week later and his death was labeled a suicide. The CIA later admitted to drugging him and even more recently, after exhuming his body, experts believe he was actually murdered.

CIA blundersSource: wikipedia

Anderson Cooper was once an intern at the CIA. He disliked it enough that he decided to pursue a career in journalism instead.

CIA blundersSource: washingtonpost.com

In 2013, following a FOIA filing, the CIA publicly acknowledged the existence of Area 51 for the first time

CIA blundersSource: wikipedia

The CIA shut down an entire Himalayan mountain for nearly 10 years because they lost a nuclear-powered telemetry relay listening device on the summit

CIA blundersSource: wikipedia

In 1963 Dr. Donald Cameron wiped a woman's memory on behalf of the CIA using electroshocks.

CIA blundersSource: wikipedia

The CIA reads over 5 million tweets every single day

CIA blundersSource: thenextweb.com

The CIA has a secret museum that is only open to its employees. It has been labeled the "best museum you'll never get to see"

CIA blundersSource: dailymail.co.uk

In 1951 the CIA allegedly spiked the food supply of an entire French village with LSD. It was supposedly part of its cold war campaign

cia blundersSource: boingboing.net

Show Us Your Love
Join Over 2 Million+ List25 Fans