CIA-backed Secret Experiments Conducted on Hundreds of Danish Orphans
By Staff, Agencies
The Central Intelligence Agency [CIA] backed secret experiments into schizophrenia on 311 Danish children, many adopted or from orphanages, during the early 1960s, according to a newly released documentary.
Danish Radio’s documentary ‘The Search for Myself’ accuses the US spy agency of supporting the experiments at the Municipal Hospital in Copenhagen. The studies were reportedly investigating the link between schizophrenia and heredity or the environment.
Per Wennick, who says he was participant in the experiments as a child, noted that he was placed in a chair, with electrodes strapped to him and forced to listen to loud, shrill noises. The aim of the test was supposedly to find out if a child had psychopathic traits.
“It was very uncomfortable. And it's not just my story, it's the story of many children,” Wennick said, describing his experience.
The project was co-financed by a US health service, receiving support from the Human Ecology Fund, which is operated on behalf of the CIA, according to Wennick and the National Archives.
While the children were not told what the experiments were for, during or after the research, a dissertation was published in 1977 by Danish psychiatrist Find Schulsinger detailing the study.
The Danish Welfare Museum’s Jacob Knage Rasmussen said that this is the first documented time where children under care were used for research purposes in the country.
“I do not know of similar attempts, neither in Denmark nor in Scandinavia. It is appalling information that contradicts the Nuremberg Code of 1947, which after World War II was to set some ethical restrictions for experiments on humans” Rasmussen stated.