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Operational Anomalous Cognition

Semipalatinsk, The Former Soviet Union (1974)
Radio Listening Post: Urals (1974)
Selected Examples of Operations


Semipalatinsk, The Former Soviet Union (1974)

Under the direction of Harold E. Puthoff, Ph.D., a program receiver was asked to describe what was located at a particular site in the former Soviet Union given the geographical coordinates of a suspected underground nuclear testing site known by the code name PNUTS. Both Puthoff and his associate Russell Targ were not informed as to what may have present at the site.

What follows is a brief summary of the protocol, data, and ground truth for this first use of anomalous cognition in an actual intelligence problem. (Source: Unclassified material sent to the technical reviewers as part of the CIA's program evaluation.)

In the first phase, the receiver was given only the geographical coordinates of the site. The government's representative decided that if the receiver described either the known multistory crane or odd structures resembling oil well derricks, then they would continue. Imbedded in the receiver's response was a drawing of a large crane where a person would only reach half a wheel height. Encouraged by this response, considerably more data were collected against this target.

In general, most of the receiver's data were incorrect or could not be evaluated. There were, however, enough correct information, such as the construction of large spheres (Source: Aviation Week, 2 May 1977), silos, and the crane that it was decided to continue with further testing. (Click for photos and sketches.)


Radio Listening Post: Urals (1974)

A receiver volunteered to scan the other side of the globe for a radio listening post and claimed to have found one located at 65-degrees, 0-minutes, 57-seconds North and 59-degrees, 59-minutes, 59-seconds East. The receiver said:

Elevation, 6200 ft. Scrubby brush, tundra-type ground hummocks, rocky outcroppings, mountains with fairly steep slopes. Facing north, about 60 miles ground slopes to marshland. Mountain chain runs off to right about 35-degrees east of north. Facing south, mountains run fairly north and south. Facing west, mountains drop down to foothills for 60 miles or so: some rivers running roughly north. Facing east, mountains are rather abrupt, dropping to rolling hills and to flat land. Area site underground, reinforced concrete, doorways of steel of the roll-up type. Unusually high ratio of women to men, at least at night. I see some helipads, concrete. Light rail tracks run from pads to another set of rails that parallel the doors into the mountain. Thirty miles north (5-degrees west of north) of the site is a radar installation with one large (165 ft) dish and to small fast-track dishes.

The report for the Urals Site was verified by personnel in the sponsor organization as being substantially correct. (Source: Unclassified material sent to the technical reviewers as part of the CIA's program evaluation.)


Selected Examples of Operations

Source: Washington Post, 30 November 1995, Page A-13

Question Asked

Receiver Response

What Happened

September 1979: National Security Council asked about a Soviet submarine under construction.* Very large, new submarine with 18-20 missile launch tubes and a "large flat area" at the aft end would be launched in 100 days. Two subs, one with 24 launch tubes and the other with 20 launch tubes and a large flat aft deck, were sighted in 120 days.
February 1988: Defense Intelligence Agency asked where Marine Corps Col. William Higgins was being held in Lebanon. Higgins was in a specific building in a specific South Lebanon village. A released hostage later said Higgins had probably been in that building at that time.
January 1989: Pentagon asked about possible Libyan response to U.S. criticism of chemical weapons work at Rabta. A ship named Patua or Potua would arrive in Tripoli to transport chemicals to an eastern Libyan port. A ship named Batato arrived in Tripoli and loaded undetermined cargo, which it brought to an eastern Libyan port.

*Webmaster's note: The table above, taken from the WA Post, may be misleading to those unfamiliar with this exercise. What NSC asked was "What is going on under this roof?" in a small piece of photo given the Receiver; the roof was (unbeknownst to the Receiver) in the [former] USSR. It was unknown that a submarine was under construction in the building until it was seen over three months later.

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