US Army intelligence officer Major Ed Dames was one of five officers trained to monitor and analyze ‘remote viewing’, a technique said to allow users to psychically ‘see’ locations, events or other information from great distances.
The top-secret project, run by the Defense Intelligence Agency, would be dubbed Project StarGate.
The Central Intelligence Agency, to whom Project StarGate was transferred in 1995, canceled it, and declassified files related to some of its aspects in a massive document dump earlier this year.
The agency concluded that the program had no hope of being used for operations, although a retrospective evaluation conducted following its closure suggested that there was some evidence of psychic functioning.
In an exclusive interview with Sputnik, Retired Major Ed Dames, one of a handful of Army personnel to receive training in remote viewing, and who would go on to coordinate and run remote viewing teams, revealed that the technology was not only real, but that it was successfully used in operations against the US’s Soviet adversaries, as well as other actors. Assigned to the remote viewing unit in January 1986, Dames worked for the program until December 1989.
Below is Major Dames’ account, featuring only minimal, mostly stylistic and grammar tweaks.
Spying in the Dark Days of the Cold War
Sputnik: Could you give us an overview of your professional career from back in the 1980s and up to the current day, and what activities you are engaged in right now?
Dames: I worked at very high levels of US intelligence – officer secretary of defense at virtually celestial levels as a science and technology officer. My expertise in particular was biological warfare, and I was a targeting officer – I got to choose what targets the US intelligence apparatus would pursue. Most of those were Soviet at the time of the Cold War, of course.
In certain cases, some of the Soviet programs, and to a certain extent the Chinese threat programs were so classified that by hook or by crook we could not penetrate them. I had at my disposal all the tools that intelligence could provide me – satellites, agents on the ground, all kinds of exotic things, but we could not gain access or get insight into some very, very classified programs.
“But we had one tool – a remote viewing unit, where operators would use altered states to be able to target the inside of these facilities.”
But we had one tool – a remote viewing unit, where operators would use altered states to be able to target the inside of these facilities. They were providing me with intelligence that I could use to cross queue to redirect other systems to gain information. I began to lean on this remote viewing unit, which was an Army unit at the time, and became so enthralled with and interested in it that I stepped down from these high levels to take over as operations and training officer of this unit. That was 33 years ago or so, and I’m still engaged in this kind of work.
When I retired, I trained a civilian team [of remote viewers], and what we do now in particular is support the FBI, looking for fugitives. I have a personal interest in missing children, and I spend a great deal of time in that pursuit.
But occasionally I still focus on some scientific targets, ergo the recent report on the origin of the emission of this mysterious ruthenium-106 isotope in Europe – I tracked that down to its emission source and provided [the information] to French and German scientists.
Everything that exists in the universe is a pattern of information, and what we discovered in the laboratory, and what we started to apply, was a method for how the unconscious part of our mind communicates with conscious awareness when we’re targeting a specific person, place, thing or an event. We can hold focus on those things, whereas a psychic can’t do this – they will lose the target and slip all over the place. We have very, very rigid protocols that we use to hold onto a target, and to gain as much descriptive information about it as possible. That’s what I do.
A Project So Secret, Only 100 People Were Briefed on Its Existence
“Only 100 people could be briefed on [StarGate’s] existence.”
Can you give us some background on Project StarGate and on the confidentiality around it back in the 1980s?
It was a top secret, limited access program. Only 100 people could be briefed on [its] existence. What was classified were the people who were in it, what we were doing and our capabilities. The capabilities are still [classified]. The CIA has released most of the documents about our program, except for the ones that are highly sensitive.
As operations officer of the unit, I know what those operations were, and they were very, very effective in supporting the US intelligence community. For instance, [when used for] counterintelligence, we could locate Soviet spies where other systems could not do that.
It was highly classified, and only a few members of Congress were briefed on our operation, but they did not really want to be associated with us publically, because of the connection with what they perceived as the occult or paranormal.
We were kind of the ‘Red Light District’ of the intelligence community as far as the StarGate program went.
Later on, it shifted to the Defense Intelligence Agency, and that’s where I was operations and training officer. When Congress decided to disband [the program], and it got sent to the CIA, that’s where it ended its life. But I became the keeper of the keys, and today I’ve evolved the techniques and the methods…which were highly effective, and [which] no other tool [can match].
I am not easily entertained. I would not have stuck with this particular technique and method for thirty plus years – I am still in awe of its capability.
Reading the Soviets’ Minds?
Project StarGate’s Top Priorities
“…our job was to penetrate those programs and describe them, so that the US could develop defensive measures.”
Major, could you please elaborate on the particular challenges that you faced back in the 1980s during the Cold War with regard to Project StarGate?
[The challenges] were particularly science and technology-related, and they were particularly directed at the erstwhile Soviet Union. All the new science-driven technologies that the Soviets were using in terms of offensive weapons systems – our job was to penetrate those programs and describe them, so that the US could develop defensive measures. That was predominantly what we did.
We had some side issues, for instance counter-narcotics. We could direct the Coast Guard to a particular ship that had sealed cocaine or [some other drug] inside its bulkhead. We could direct the Coast Guard to exactly where to weld and open a bulkhead and remove the cocaine, but that was a minor part of our job.
“We spent a week looking at these glowing white spheres above this Soviet sub.”
Perhaps you have a couple of memories from operations or events which bring a smile to your face when you recall them?
There are a couple. In one instance we were provided with a satellite photograph of a ‘boomer’, a Soviet nuclear submarine, and there were two very large glowing white spheres above it, and our science and technology operators asked us what these were. The Navy was particularly interested in this. We spent a week looking at these glowing white spheres above this Soviet sub.
The Navy came back and said ‘So what do you have?’ I said they were real; it’s not an artifact of spurious radiation or anything that the satellite was afflicted with. These were real things. ‘Ok Ed, what else about them?’, I was asked. ‘Well, they’re not from around here,’ I answered. And the Navy officer said ‘You mean they’re Chinese?’ ‘No, they’re not from around here.’ He got the message that they were something else, not of this particular world, said thank you very much, and we didn’t see him again.
“We were asked…to get inside the deep mind of Saddam Hussein to discern what his plans and motives were.”
And the second?
It was right on the cusp of when I retired. We were asked by the General Motors Corporation to get inside the deep mind of Saddam Hussein to discern what his plans and motives were. So we did that for General Motors.
But back in the military days, most of our targets were science and technology-related. My particular concern was offensive biological warfare programs. I and my team had to ‘get inside’ Soviet research laboratories, and discern what forms of anthrax, what forms of botulinum were being produced as weapons.
You can see if you look at my background and my decorations – some of them deal with exactly these kinds of things – how we penetrated the offensive Soviet biological weapons program.
Soviet and foreign journalist at a Soviet chemical munitions facility watch as a chemical round is dismantled. © Sputnik A. Solomonov
StarGate ‘The Only Unit That Could Answer the Call’
What information can you share with us about the broader US psychic spying programs during the Cold War?
I was the operations and training officer for that program at the Defense Intelligence Agency. I trained all of the officers in the program to be able to use these skills. It’s a very rigorous, systematic training program. That’s not classified anymore. In fact, I provided those protocols to my former KGB counterparts when I visited St. Petersburg a couple of years ago.
But yes, I was involved in operations and training of all of it, period. But I had nothing to do with the management, and did not want anything to do with the management.
“Very few other programs would be able to describe these kinds of offensive systems except for us, and that’s why we were so important.”
Why did the US decide to set up this type of psychic spying initiative during the Cold War?
Because we were the only unit that could ‘answer the mail’, allegorically speaking. We could by hook or by crook get into very classified programs and discern what the Soviets were doing.
Were they building titanium submarines that could dive deeper than the US subs, and present a threat there? What kind of biological weapons were they developing? What kinds of directed particle beam or high-powered microwave weapons were they developing? Very few other programs would be able to describe these kinds of offensive systems except for us, and that’s why we were so important.
In fact, there were moments where we could actually penetrate the Soviet Defense Council meetings and discern what their plans were strategically for the future. And that’s why we were so ‘sexy’ in terms of Washington, DC and the intelligence community. Nobody else could do that except us.
KGB and GRU Extrasense Programs
Did it appeal to you that this technology you were dealing with was 10-15 years in advance of any other country or organization? Was it a big motivator?
Extremely. It was the spice of life as far as I was concerned. Now, the KGB had an extra-sense program, run by a KGB colonel. They never knew how to train this, so they chose very gifted psychics from Leningrad and Moscow and directed their attention to programs similar to what we were looking at in the Soviet Union. They were directed to look at US secret programs, but they weren’t able to train this.
“The GRU, Soviet military intelligence had a program too; they were trying to induce altered states using drugs.”
The GRU, Soviet military intelligence had a program too; they were trying to induce altered states using drugs. The technology that we use now is very different. Using mind-expanding drugs like Halcion or LSD doesn’t work, because the viewer – the operator, cannot maintain focus on his or her target, so that didn’t work.
StarGate May Be Gone,
But Remote Viewing Hasn’t Gone Anywhere
“What has changed in the last twenty plus years is the ability now to pinpoint a target within four hours; that is a huge, huge advantage…”
You now have over thirty years of experience with remote viewing. How has it changed since the 1980s, and how are you utilizing this discipline to help organizations and countries today?
There’s one very significant change. As I’ve evolved this tool over the years, there’s one thing that we could not do in the military unit. One of our primary tasks during the 1980s was to locate hostages in the Middle East that terrorists had under their control; Terry Waite, Terry Anderson, Colonel William Higgens – people like that held by Hezbollah or other agencies in the Middle East. We could easily, within a couple of hours, describe their state of being or non-being, exactly where they were being kept, their condition, their captors, we could describe all of that. But we could not locate them. It would sometimes take us four or five days to locate the exact positions of these hostages, and by that time, the captors would have moved them.
What has changed in the last twenty plus years is the ability now to pinpoint a target within four hours; that is a huge, huge advantage when you’re looking, as I do, for FBI’s most wanted fugitives, missing children, murderers, or terrorists. Or, as I’ve recently done, to pinpoint the location of an atmospheric radionuclide – a radioactive isotope that was found in the atmosphere in Western Europe, and to actually pinpoint its source. This was a huge change.
You now have over thirty years of experience with remote viewing. How has it changed since the 1980s, and how are you utilizing this discipline to help organizations and countries today?
There’s one very significant change. As I’ve evolved this tool over the years, there’s one thing that we could not do in the military unit. One of our primary tasks during the 1980s was to locate hostages in the Middle East that terrorists had under their control; Terry Waite, Terry Anderson, Colonel William Higgens – people like that held by Hezbollah or other agencies in the Middle East.
We could easily, within a couple of hours, describe their state of being or non-being, exactly where they were being kept, their condition, their captors, we could describe all of that. But we could not locate them. It would sometimes take us four or five days to locate the exact positions of these hostages, and by that time, the captors would have moved them.
“What has changed in the last twenty plus years is the ability now to pinpoint a target within four hours…”
What has changed in the last twenty plus years is the ability now to pinpoint a target within four hours; that is a huge, huge advantage when you’re looking, as I do, for FBI most wanted fugitives, missing children, murderers, or terrorists. Or, as I’ve recently done, to pinpoint the location of an atmospheric radionuclide – a radioactive isotope that was found in the atmosphere in Western Europe, and to actually pinpoint its source. This was a huge change.
How is remote viewing assisting nations and organizations today, in 2017, in their fight against crime and terrorism?
Crime and terrorism are only one aspect of what we do. We can assist scientists in looking at developing protocols that they’re working on. I have had the honor of training some of the world’s leading physicians, and when they come to me for training, I ask them to bring their most intractable problems, whether current or past, to my classroom, and we use those as a practicum.
We’ve saved a lot of lives – young people, children, where doctors could not effectively diagnose what was wrong. Was it genetic disenfranchisement, was the sodium ion pump ineffective in their plasma membranes and their cells? We can discern all of that. We can look at the chemical nature of things, we can discern whether a 55 gallon drum has benzene or benzol in it.
So we’re technically very, very proficient, and we’ve helped many Fortune 500 corporations look at scientific things. For instance, the late Laurence Rockefeller asked my team to look at a project, [called] Atmospheric Ozone Depletion: Projected Consequences and Remedial Technologies. We did that for him, and discovered that not only are the ozone holes over the poles a serious problem, but that the entire ozone layer is metastasizing, and that it looks like Swiss cheese. These are the kinds of insights we can gain that no other scientific tool or probe can discern.
Future of ‘Remote Viewing’: Sky’s Not the Limit
What is the future of remote viewing? How can it assist humanity over the next ten to fifteen years with the advent of further technology?
For one thing, I believe that children should be trained in this. The protocols for children under ten years old that I’ve developed are a little bit different, for technical reasons, than what an adult is trained to do. But this training should be taught in schools, because it is direct knowledge. It sees facts and truth directly. When we go to school, we study something and gain knowledge about it to learn about it. But remote viewing is direct knowledge, and it’s a very effective tool in that regard. It can save millions of dollars in research. We’ve done this, for the Ford Corporation, and other companies, to look at the technological lines they’re developing [to find out whether] it is a dead end, or [whether] they should put more money into them.
So in terms of money alone, we can save millions of dollars. That is why I trained a technical team at a jet propulsion laboratory – to act as a cadre, so that they solve their own problems in the future. We like space issues. The late Harrison Schmitt, the Apollo 17 astronaut – we performed a remote viewing survey of Titan, the largest moon of Saturn. He was a geologist, and wanted to know about the geology of Titan.
So the sky’s the limit, but really not the limit; there are no limits to what minds can do.
Project StarGate’s Fate: DIA, CIA Feared What They Couldn’t Understand
“[StarGate] had shades of the paranormal, the occult, and it was scary…”
Why did the US government ultimately choose to close Project StarGate in the end? Could you explain the political rationale for this decision?
Yes of course. It was a hot potato…When a general becomes a general, at star ranks, politics begin to enter the picture. And even at the CIA, and the Defense Intelligence Agency, generals, Harry Soyster and others did not want to be associated with this unit, for reasons that I have already explained. It had shades of the paranormal, the occult, and it was scary, because in the Western scientific method…you need two things in order to substantiate a technology or scientific pursuit, replicability [and a theory].
We had replicability. That was easy. We could train one remote viewer working independently of another to come up with the same information.
But what we did not have, and what the Western scientific method dictates – is a theory. To this day, we have a working hypothesis of how we do what we do, but there is no theory for how our minds can discern specific targets and describe them at a distance, ergo the term remote viewing.
Do you believe the CIA’s rationale that the Project StarGate was useless? What’s your opinion about the program?
It was shut down for reasons I’ve elaborated upon. Most of the very highly sensitive operations that we conducted, particularly against drug trafficking, never made it to the public. All the records the CIA released were of jejune types of operations. Yes, some were interesting, but what was never released, and what probably will never be released, is our very, very highly effective operations against Soviet offensive weapons systems, describing them so that we could develop defensive means to protect our troops against these kinds of thing. That will not be released.
“As someone who was definitely on the inside, I’m telling you that we have been and can still be extremely effective in those types of venues.”