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 Essay: When Remote Viewing Fails... 
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Post Essay: When Remote Viewing Fails...
When Remote Viewing Fails: The "Pat Paulsen" Case

By Paul H. Smith

His project codename was "Francis," but we nick-named him "Pat
Paulsen," for his resemblance to the long-faced comedian and perpetual
US presidential candidate of that name. Our "Pat Paulsen," though,
was neither a comedian nor a presidential candidate, and there was
absolutely nothing humorous about his circumstances.

The man was William Francis Buckley, station chief for the CIA in
Beirut Lebanon, a decorated Vietnam combat veteran with years of
experience in the clandestine world of intelligence. However, Buckley
will not be remembered so much for his accomplishments and dedicated
service to his country. He is down in history for a fact completely
beyond his control: he was among the first Americans to be kidnapped
by Hizb'allah in Lebanon. And unlike most of the others, he did not
get out of it alive.

Our mission – that is, the mission for INSCOM Center Lane Program's
remote viewing project number 8404 – was to help find Buckley before
it was too late. The CIA officer was kidnapped on March 16, 1984.
Our tasking arrived on March 20th. Over the next few weeks 12 remote
viewing sessions were worked. The majority were performed by the two
most experienced viewers in the unit at the time, Joe McMoneagle and
Tom McNear. By the time Project 8404 was finished, a number of
detailed remote viewing results of unknown accuracy were produced.
Sadly, all this work was to no avail. Buckley was never rescued, and
died in captivity on June 3 1985. His body was finally recovered in
late 1991 alongside the road leading to Beirut Airport.

Why did remote viewing "fail"? In the end, it is hard to know whether
it was remote viewing that failed, or other factors that got in the
way. It is possible the RV data was accurate, but that the lay of the
land and circumstances were such that Buckley could not be
successfully recovered. Or, that the people who received the data did
not trust it, and were reluctant to act on it. On the other hand, it
is also possible – perhaps probable – that remote viewing was just not
up to the task, for a number of reasons. Perhaps the data was
inaccurate, as happens often enough with remote viewing. Or instead,
perhaps it was accurate, but too vague to be of real value. That also

When someone hears you are a remote viewer, if they only know a little
bit about remote viewing they often assume you claim a skill to find
missing things using ESP. Finding things is known as the "search
problem" to remote viewers. Ironically in the face of this public
misbelief, though it sometimes can be helpful in a search situation,
remote viewing is usually lousy at it – it is much better at other
things. But because finding missing things or people is so often a
top priority, and since remote viewing can sometimes be helpful, in
the military (and even now) it was called upon from time to time to
work a miracle. Once in a while miracles happen. Too often, as our
"Pat Paulsen" project demonstrated, they don't.

In 1984, Buckley's unfortunate case was strong motivation for us to
look for a solution to the search problem. Also urging us along were
the cases of other hostages kidnapped in Lebanon, as well as that of
dedicated DEA agent Enrique Camarena, who was abducted, tortured under
the supervision of a doctor, and murdered in Mexico by drug
traffickers and renegade police. We failed on that one, too, though
we did manage to provide an accurate description of the location where
Camarena's body was later found. Unfortunately, the description
matched hundreds of other locations like it in Mexico.

After a few years of working similar cases, we in the military remote
viewing program learned or developed new techniques that noticeably
improved our success. By the time we figured it out, the Lebanon
hostage crisis was mostly over. But a new test was looming – the
struggle to contain the flow of harmful narcotics into the United
States. There we made some headway. I have first-person testimony
from operators within the Joint Task Forces we supported, as well as
other documentary evidence that our efforts at search led to the
recovery of contraband and the capture of narco-traffickers. Lessons
were learned there that are applicable today, both in our current
global war against terror, but even right down to our everyday lives.

Join me at the 2007 Remote Viewing Conference, 19-21 October at the
Alexis Park Resort in Las Vegas and I will tell you the rest of the
story: An introduction to what we did, how we did it, the science
behind it – and what relevance this has to all of us today.

(Copyright 2007, Paul H. Smith)

- - - -

You can find out about the 2007 Remote Viewing Conference and register
by going to or by calling 866-374-4782.

Paul H. Smith (Major, US Army, ret.) is author of Reading the Enemy's
Mind: Inside Star Gate – America's Psychic Espionage Program, and is
president and chief instructor for Remote Viewing Instructional
Services, Inc.

Begin your journey today...

Fri Sep 21, 2007 1:07 am
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