Project ARTICHOKE (also referred to as Operation ARTICHOKE) was a CIA project that researched interrogation methods and arose from Project BLUEBIRD on August 20, 1951, run by the CIA Office of Scientific Intelligence.  A memorandum by Richard Helms to CIA director Allen Dulles indicated Artichoke became Project MKULTRA on April 13, 1953.
The project studied hypnosis, forced morphine addiction (and subsequent forced withdrawal), and the use of other chemicals, among other methods, to produce amnesia and other vulnerable states in subjects.
ARTICHOKE was an offensive program of mind control that gathered together the intelligence divisions of the US Army, Navy, Air Force, and FBI. In addition, the scope of the project was outlined in a memo dated January 1952 that stated, "Can we get control of an individual to the point where he will do our bidding against his will and even against fundamental laws of nature, such as self-preservation?"     
- [http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/NSAEBB/NSAEBB54/ Science, Technology and the CIA
- Church Committee; p. 390 "MKULTRA was approved by the DCI [Director of Central Intelligence] on April 13, 1953"
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