Since the integration of SAS special forces in 1940, the British have always tried to push their troops beyond their human capabilities and limits in order to approach what was believed to be the ultimate soldier. By the time a human reaches their maximum potential or capacity (even after years of training), there is only one thing left that can really improve them in some apparent case.
It has been said that these tests actually started towards the beginning 1958, as the Cold War was about to begin. It is true that Britain itself did not play a very significant role in this war, but like every other nation in the world it also felt the tension as well as the belief that a 3rd World War was imminent.
The difference this time was that they wanted to be more on the offensive side and the British also knew that this war would be very different. The Soviets and Americans were already preparing the most devastating and powerful nuclear weapons the world had ever seen. I assume that the British, as well as other nations, knew that a nuclear war would only bring an end to humanity.
Therefore, they started tinvent powerful drugs to create chemical weapons to prepare for psychochemical warfare. What they planned to do was create chemical bombs that would be dropped on enemy infantry and affect them psychologically to the point where they would simply be incapacitated by the side effects.
However, you couldn’t just throw drugs out of thin air, because it had to be tested, and who better to use than a few dumb young recruits? More than 7000 British soldiers participated in these tests and more than 250 of them died, according to declassified records. The soldiers were given an exact amount of water and food and after a few hours they were given a small “harmless” dose of acid (LSD).
After a short period of time, the soldiers began to act very strangely and they were unable to follow the orders received from their commanders. Most of them burst out laughing. Take a look at this short clip depicting British soldiers on LSD:
So the acid worked, however, it was still not optimal as some soldiers were still able to follow orders even under the influence of such chemical drugs, which meant they were able to fight. However, the majority of soldiers actually forgot they were in the middle of a battlefield as they no longer took cover or were barely able to aim their weapons.
Lysergic Acid-25 Diethylamide was the main drug used in these tests, the only problem, apart from the fact that it was a very powerful drug, was that it was very expensive. These tests continued for more than 15 years through very different doses and chemicals. As mentioned earlier, during this 15-year period, more than 250 soldiers died.
The British decided to blame the Americans for such tests in order to cover themselves. It is true that the Americans also attempted acid tests on their soldiers, but not on such a large scale or with the exact thought in mind.The new high command questioned the ethics of such an experiment and therefore decided to stop it. Rumors came out of a certain Russian spy stating that he knew the truth about the tests but in order to hide the story, the
It’s surprising how it turned out today’s media, but at the same time most of it focused on the tensions between the Soviet Union and the United States. It is imperative to mention how cruel they must have been back then to test drugs and chemicals on their own men.