by Jim Channon
Journal of Non-lethal Combatives,
Introduction and annotation by
Joseph R. Svinth
In 1979, the Peoples’ Republic of China publicly reported that
several thousand of its children aged 8-14 were capable of
telepathy, clairvoyance, X-ray vision, or psychokinesis.
[EN1] Having already heard about this
program, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), National Security
Agency (NSA), Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), Lawrence Livermore
Laboratories, and the US Army were simultaneously pouring billions
of dollars into their own similar research.
The Army program was headquartered at Fort Meade, Maryland, and was
part of the Intelligence and Security Command (INSCOM). Leaders
Edmund Thompson and
Albert Stubblebine, and
Officers assigned to the
US Army War College at Carlisle Barracks,
Pennsylvania contributed research to the project, and "The
First Earth Battalion" is essentially a textual copy of one
group’s unclassified briefing slides.
Although decidedly New Age, the War College project was not entirely
theoretical. Colonel Alexander, for example, went on to become a
leader in the Los Alamos National Lab’s
non-lethal weapons program.
[EN3] Likewise, during the early 1980s
Special Forces hired Richard Strozzi Heckler and other outside
contractors to provide two A-teams, a total of 25 men, with training
in biofeedback, aikido, and "mind-body psychology."
In the latter program, a typical
training day included running, swimming, "industrial-strength"
calisthenics, and 1-1/2 hours of aikido practice. After six months,
the soldiers were not aikido masters but they were quantifiably 75%
more physically fit than when they started.
During correspondence with the editor in January 2000, author
Channon had this to say:
The ideas circulated by this
mythical force [First Earth Battalion] began with combat of the
collective conscience… the principal that if any contest is
viewed by the television audience, it will be judged in the end
on ethical superiority. Thus cameras mounted on dune buggies.
The Army War College has the most exhaustive instructional
materials on peacekeeping. All these ideas were first
represented by Earth Battalion thinkers and the manual you have.
Channon’s statement may sound
hyperbolic, but if you substitute "CNN" for "EARTH BATTALION
satellite" in the following document, then you have a good
description of the United States military’s foreign policy of the
Likewise, if you think of the global
communication system Channon envisioned as the Internet, then it
appears that he had a pretty good idea of where ARPANET (the acronym
for the Department of Defense’s Advanced Research Projects Agency’s
computer network) was headed. Therefore, despite the hyperbole and
New Age jargon, Channon’s crystal ball proved clearer than cynics
And if nothing else, the following paper does suggest why drug
testing became common for all ranks during the mid-1980s.
Author: LTC James B.
Sponsors: MAJ (P) [Promotable] M.M. Ischinger/COL D.M.
JNC Feb 2000
Understanding that we must work
through people, how can our Army establish and maintain control
of changing, interdependent systems to maximize force readiness?
Process of Influencing People.
The Process of Control.
The Dynamics of Change.
The Nature of Interdependence.
The Science of Systems.
The Dynamics of Force Readiness.
Concept Paper Title: The First Earth Battalion
Concept: Task Force Delta’s effort needs the track of
time. Just as we maintain our perspective of the past and
contact with the complexities of the present, our "First Earth
Battalion" is the prime place to put thoughts of the future
through a basic Army perspective.
The views expressed in this concept paper are those of
the author(s) and do not purport to reflect the
positions or policies of the Department of the Army or
of the Department of Defense. Requests for additional
information or clarification regarding this concept
paper should be addressed to HQ TRADOC, ATTN: ATCG-SD,
Ft. Monroe, VA 23651.
The track of time comes hurtling up out of the past, from
somewhere billions of years ago back in history. It flicks by us
as we stand here now in the present and then thrusts on for
billions of years out ahead of us, out into the future, bound
for some place called infinity.
Two things we know about time: its march is inexorable… and it
always gives rise to change. Change, then, is like time,
inexorable, inevitable and pervasive -- and so powerful and
complex a thing that in just five billion years, change has
produced, from inorganic matter and countless millions of
experiments, complex living things such as social insects and
Any concept of change is a concept of time. Thus any concept of
change must involve past, present, and future. Task Force
Delta’s effort, as a concept of change, needs the track of time…
the lessons of history, the realities of the present, and the
dreams and visions of the future.
Our "First Earth Battalion" is a place to dream. A place to
think the unthinkable. It’s the prime place to put our thoughts
of the future just as we must maintain our perspective of the
past and contact with the complexities of the present. It’s an
"Earth" battalion because of what we know about a shrinking
world, and about interdependencies among people, and nations,
and natural resources… interdependencies which everyday are
becoming more evident to us all. It’s a battalion because our
study effort is directed to our Army, and the battalion is an
entity which all of us soldiers from top to bottom, can
Signed: D.M. Malone, COL, US Army
Making this planet whole… requires the ethical use of force. But
even subcultures of force must evolve into a master culture. The
Army is no exception.
Soldiers can be the principal moral ethical basis on which
things political can harmonize in the name of the Earth.
[Editor’s note: The following are the headings and
textual portions of illustrated briefing slides compiled into a
booklet and self-published as "The First Earth Battalion" by
Channon in 1979. Spelling errors have been corrected, but all
ellipses (…) were the author’s rather than the editor’s.]
Earthkind has grown from pack to
village… and then from village to tribe, then from tribe to
territory… and from territory to nation.
It is time to go from nation to
The First Earth Battalion hereby
declares its primary allegiance to the planet.
THE WARRIOR MONK
Chinese monks were often attacked by robbers.
They developed a new fighting system
based on using the force of the attacker against him. Likewise
the soldiers of the First Earth will learn martial arts with the
same ethical basis.
No Earth soldier shall be denied the
kingdom of heaven because he or she is used as an instrument of
The conscience will be developed
together with the ability to neutralize the opponent.
THE EARTH BATTALION IS AND IS
The Earth Battalion is potential oriented, not mission oriented,
so any definition of what it is or does tends to limit what it
can become… At the moment it is a spirit among other things.
By 1990 it may be a pilot community of warrior-monks who
completely recycle all resources, live amidst new nuclear
reactors and waiting deployment to tension spots.
A think tank methodology for the
U.S. Army -- a banner for the closet greathearts wherever they
are -- a bonding agent for the idealist activists in the service
and out -- a home for the ethical evolution of force -- an
alternate form of service to the planet.
The pioneering spirit is not dead in America! Many of the Earth
Battalion ideas are taken from
the New Age.
This small sample of New Age groups
shows there is plenty of gold left in the hills of the mind,
body and spirit. The rush is on!
[Logos and advertisements posted include:]
New Dimensions Foundation
In the Flow
Berkeley Institute for
Training in Psychodrama
Dimensional Mind Approach
New Age Awareness Fair
Aikido with Ki
Briarpatch Review: A Journal
of Right Livelihood & Simple Living
The Center of Release and
The Owner Builder Center
The Biofeedback Center of
Integral Chuan Institute
The Brosnan Tortoise. (The
latter was "a small group who seek to advance the
comprehension, experience, and worship of God. Our
activities center around the study of
STRUCTURE WITHOUT STATUS
Everyone in the First Earth is equally important in the eyes of
the organization and will be provided for accordingly. Status is
achieved by the skill with which you do your chosen task. It’s
not important that you move up in the organization… only that
your skill level moves up. Leaders will be those [soldiers]
whose chosen skills are group interworking and spiritual
Always allowing for diversity… we can share the ways that humans
are all wonderfully unique. The uniform
must serve the soldier’s given task
but must equally serve to share the most precious gift we each
have to share … our personality.
Common banners will serve to share the corporate Earth Battalion
[The picture shows a "Battalion Samurai Battle Mantle"]
UNITY POWERED BY DIVERSITY
Synergy is possible when every soldier brings his or her
individual best to the group task. It is multiplied in strength
again if that soldier truly loves the other members of the unit.
Then we shall have the maximum combat power available.
Things like Fuller’s
illustrate how the maximum in individual tension can be held
delicately in check by group unity -- thereby generating the
maximum potential energy.
The vector equilibrium, the visible structure, plus LOVE = the
The First Earth is not mission oriented it is potential
oriented. That means we shall continue to look everywhere to
find non-destructive methods of control.
J.F.C. Fuller, the father of mechanized warfare, was an
omni-directional thinker and a member of the world of the
Be a guerrilla guru: [explore] the occult, the new age, the
traditional, eastern philosophy, [and] space age technology.
Jobs in the First Earth are based on capabilities. Sex, age,
color, or religious preferences are not considerations.
Culture has, however, programmed men
and women so that they feel pressure to relate to each other
This sexual protocol can be overcome
by a series of extended exercises requiring the absolute
interdependence of all participants until a level is trust is
developed that supersedes and rises above any kind of sexual
Fortunately love is still the
The President just needs a wider range of options to respond to
the 1980s. Force as a concept has lost much of its legitimacy.
The time has come to take the lead in solving the problems of
The First Earth Battalion
Force of heart
Force of will
Force of arms
Force of spirit
Human disaster rescue group
Eco disaster rescue group
Natural disaster rescue
The Star [Headquarters]
Sensing [Intelligence --
People [Personnel -- S-1]
Design [Operations and
Training -- S-3]
Signals [Communications and
Support [Logistics -- S-4]
Headquarters = Star
Counter-force company: Arms,
Heart, Will, Spirit
Pioneer company: Space
pioneer, Eco pioneers, Urban pioneers
Rescue company: Natural
disaster, Eco disaster, Human disaster
REASONS TO BE
Soldiers are in the business of life and death. As a leader
during war, I must know that if my soldiers are to die… that
it’s for the right reasons. When at peace they deserve nothing
less than a chance of personal evolution.
Soldiers can be a real part of the evolution of this Earth.
Anything less… is just something less.
In the martial arts, one learns a number of possible
countermoves against different types of possible enemies. These
practice battles are done over and over until they become
instinct. Likewise in the Earth Battalion all plausible
engagements are war-gamed until each soldier has the routine
cold. In this way the battalion can operate in the absence of
commands from its leaders, who may be out of touch, because of
the new realities of modern warfare.
[A chart compares "martial art stances" (e.g., prepare left,
block left, en garde, prepare right) to a flowchart reading:]
If you are overrun -- move to the nearest road junction, take
control of the buildings, wait for his towed artillery, destroy
all you can… till you have lost an offensive punch, then
exfiltrate [sneak out] or surrender to save life.
All warrior monks, but an interdependence of New Age skills as
[The graphic shows the following skills, all emanating from a
central Spirit Wizard]
Using traditional and New Age ideas:
Yogic cat stretch
Primal scream and leap
Ginseng tab regulator
Speed [ amphetamines] or
morning thunder tea [EN6]
Primal low frequency lights
Paced primal rock [music] in
Discordant sounds for them
Just like many systems…
when a nation or government becomes old, it is so full of its
ideas [that] it has no room for new ones. Well, there are New
Age ideas with great power for the first body that decides to
systematically use them.
THE EARTH BATTALION WILL HEAR THEM ALL.
[The accompanying illustration shows a rucksack containing body
vest music (e.g., a Walkman®), night vision foodstuffs, natural
foods, dried munchie packs, divining tools (divining rods had
been used in Vietnam to find Viet Cong tunnels with at least as
much success as CIA sonar systems), and ginseng regulators.]
MARKING THE TRAIL
The American Indian revealed himself as an individual by his
distinctive ornamentation. His shield in some cases was more
complete as a representation of his skills and predisposition
than the modern soldier’s personnel file.
Earth Battalion soldiers will be encouraged to represent
themselves well in their dress, and wear a twelve-pointed star
with each axis clipped to reveal a dimension on a standard
personality inventory test. [EN7]
FIT TO FIGHT
Recently a world class health expert revealed his formula for
being perfectly fit. At the heart of good health, he chose a
positive mental attitude. Next in importance was aerobic
exercise to get oxygen spread throughout the body. Finally he
broke down foods into the following priority:
Then the others -- way down the
THE DELIVERY OF FIRES
Precision delivery [of artillery fires] is a function of clear
and calm calculations. The battalion Tactical Operations Center
will employ every New Age centering tool to ensure our fire
coordinators do their job of neutralization surgically.
[Equipment shown for this New Age
Tactical Operations Center included:]
Samadi tank for command decisions. [Samadi tanks are isolation
tanks said to provide "an ideal environment for relaxation and
stress reduction, meditation, and the exploration of
consciousness." Above the door is a sign reading: "Centering
with mentations prior to entering."]
Neutralization oriented electronic map display. [This was
similar to what was already becoming standard in naval Combat
Ergonomic settings [as opposed to the traditional field table,
tent or tracked vehicle, and plywood map board].
[While working, the staff updated their map display while taking
a] Trip through bamboo sounds.
With the advent of electronic display many variations of maps
are possible on the same surface. Some ideas for the modern
Relief for direct-fire
Patterns to show gas or
Building relief for MOUT
(military operations in urbanized terrain).
Strip maps for road
See how abstract our current symbols are. They clutter the map
with Order of Battle [3rd Battalion, 37th Infantry (Mechanized)]
and lack a great deal of important targeting data [such as
[On a First Earth Battalion map
Tank units look like tanks.
Larger units mean larger
If they [tank units] are
moving, the road wheels ***pulse***.
If you need their state of
vulnerability press the top of the symbol. (These two
units are under the cover of smoke.)
If you need their projected
power, press the front of the weapon (the mobility and
range of this weapons system).
If you need their potential
[power], press the back of the symbol (unit strength,
POL [petroleum, oil, and lubricants], ammo, morale, etc.
are presented in a series of scalar dimensions).
If you must have the Order
of Battle [3rd Battalion, 37th Infantry (Mechanized)],
then press the bottom of the symbol.
YOU GET WHAT YOU NEED -- NO MORE.
NEW AGE SYNTHESIS FOR A SAMURAI
Seek your own personal path to
Actively improve your physical
Master mental self control for
Reinforce team interdependence.
Actively serve people and
Indulge in happiness and humor.
TYPICAL BATTLE SCENARIO FIRST EARTH
They parachuted in that morning and stood in a long line facing
each opposing army. The Earth Battalion satellite above beamed
this image to the globe. The Earth watched as this potential
catastrophe awaited the conscience of one of the two [rival]
army leaders to set. For they would have to bloody the Earth
Battalion people in their path before they could attack -- and
the world would know.
The Universe yields wonderful energies for those who rise above
physical mechanics. The Earth Battalion will practice
non-denominational techniques for spiritual bonding.
It is our right and they [non-denominational meditation
techniques] shall make us stronger.
When our Earth Battalion people become families and we hope they
will, they will then leave the attack battalions and go to the
nuclear release sites of each nation with a nuclear strike
In this way they will be a clear and present
reminder of what exists at the other end of a button. [The
accompanying illustration shows families living in tents in the
middle of a desert.]
Mother Earth… my life support
system… as a soldier… I must drink your blue water… live
inside your red clay and eat your green skin.
I pray… my boots will always kiss your face and my footsteps
match your heartbeat.
Carry my body through space and time… you are my connection
to the Universe… and all that comes after.
I am yours and you are mine.
I salute you.
THE WARRIOR NET
A primary function of the First Earth is to communicate ideas.
Set up a network of information within your army and with
friends in any army. Soon continental coordination will emerge
and then we will consider communications media other than the
mail and telephone.
Let this battalion grow wherever there is interest.
HUMAN DIMENSIONS: TECHNOLOGY AND
STUDY AREAS -- THE NATURAL GUARD
Natural technologies for the
Mongolian massage (Katonning);
professional football players now adopting yoga in
Sensory alertness during
technology based on aikido ala [George] Leonard
Hypnotherapy -- ala J.
Bartell’s world’s best combat shooters using
Combat first aid without
medicine or equipment
Shiatsu -- acupressure
and similar technologies based on known energy
points on the body and hypnotherapy
Hand to hand combat
weak points can either heal a friendly or hurt an
enemy; tai chi chuan by a master
Movement to contact
Two squads at rest, one
squad alert… using herb teas and other meditation
for combat contingencies using karate kata to embody
Take a suggestibility
test to determine primary learning style for each
soldier. It’s highly likely that all directed
instruction now given violates the basic
suggestibility of the modern volunteer.
profession moving to health foods -- our soldiers
can eat junk food!? [EN9]
Teams are cohesive with
around eight people… organizations should adopt the
operational style of the network… the most resilient
and effective information processor.
When Army missions are
aligned with the values of youth we won’t be able to
keep them [youth] away.
(See Earth Battalion
The silent circle and
the spirit shoot.
Conference order &
Indian kiva technology
The protocol of
The Tactical Operations
A cerebral environment
maintained by several stress reduction technologies
Breathing (Law of
Music ’n lights
The battle forms
pictures, not numbers and words. Symbol compression
technology is necessary for a facsimile system.
Fire control precision
language not only reports on pairings but also
suggests the most effective future use of response
weapons (the secret here is the breadth of the
syntax not the mass of the alpha-numeric.)
application of assonant and dissonant sound to
achieve a physical response (both audible and
hypersonic) e.g. all vehicles will use loudspeakers
in the attack and play acid rock… out of synch.
Meanwhile inside our armored personnel carriers is
rhythmic positive pulsing organizing music. Subsonic
frequencies bombard the enemy, bringing their
The evolution of mind as
developed into an art by
Gurdjieff-Khaso-Harvey-Bandler-Grinder etc. (Most
Western minds are linear and predictable
strategists.) Holographic Intelligence. Pribram --
Burns -- Claus -- Channon
When military tasks are
aligned with spiritual commitment the [military]
machine runs by itself!
EN1. Marcello Truzzi, "China’s
Psychic Savants," Omni, January 1985.
EN2. Jim Schnabel, Remote
Viewers: The Secret History of America’s Psychic Spies (New
York: Dell, 1997).
EN3. See, for example, John
Alexander, Future War: Non-Lethal Weapons in Twenty-first
Century Warfare(New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1999).
Alexander’s other publications include "The New Mental
Battlefield" in Military Review (December 1980).
EN4. Richard Strozzi Heckler, In
Search of Warrior Spirit (Berkeley, CA: North Atlantic
Press, 2nd edition, 1992).
EN5. Maj.-Gen. J.F.C. Fuller,
one of the pioneers of mechanized warfare and a noted
military historian, was also interested in astrology and the
writings of the occultist Aleister Crowley.
EN6. As early as 1883 the
Bavarian Army experimented with issuing cocaine to its
soldiers during their annual maneuvers. Subsequent
researches into chemically-enhanced militaries resulted in
the introduction of amphetamine powders in 1927 (the mostly
African American drivers of the Red Ball Express were the
best-known US users of World War II), the creation of
anabolic steroids in 1958, and the integration of
psychotropic drug research with virtual reality computer
research in 1991.
EN7. As a counterpoint, some
recent evidence suggests that standard personality inventory
tests tend to favor white, middle-class values, frequently
discriminate against minorities, and reveal little more than
the test-taker’s skill at taking standard personality
EN8. The well-known martial arts
writer Robert W. Smith was approached regarding this
project, and in a letter to the editor, he said, "I said
this is BS, include me out. Really. This was a time of big
military budgets and when they were trying to replace guns
with ESP, etc. CIA at same time were trying to get Uri
Geller, et al., to visualize Soviet missile sites." For
details of CIA involvement with Geller, see Schnabel, 1997,
EN9. Indeed, in a field
environment US soldiers are issued food loaded with fats,
sugar, and various chemical additives.