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Spycraft


Class of 1966

 

CIA MAGIC

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In 1953, the CIA initiated a top-secret program, code-named MKULTRA, to counter Soviet mind-control and interrogation techniques. Realizing the need to deploy newly developed techniques against the adversary, the CIA hired America's most famous magician, John Mulholland, to write two manuals on sleight of hand and undercover communication techniques. In 1973, virtually all documents related to MKULTRA were destroyed. Mulholland's manuals were thought to be among them—until a single surviving copy of each was recently discovered in the agency's archives. Now, thanks to former CIA gadgeteer Bob Wallace and renowned spycraft historian H. Keith Melton, The Official CIA Manual of Trickery and Deception is available to everyone, spy and civilian alike. Complemented by recreations of the manuals’ original illustrations, this eye-opening handbook offered step-by-step instructions in all manner of sleight of hand and trickery, from preparing pills, tablets and powders to creating secret pockets to surreptitiously removing objects. Offering insight into the history of spycraft and the art of magic, The Official CIA Manual of Trickery and Deception is a fascinating Cold War artifact.

— Science Fiction Book Club

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Ottawa University Class of 1966