chapter  7
50 Pages

In the Wilderness

With his clubfoot and stammer, Sidney Gottlieb was no James Bond. Yet in the 1950s, as a key member of the CIAs Technical Services Staff (TSS) at the height of the cold war, he was perhaps the most influential of America’s spy masters, second only to CIA chief Allen Dulles. The Bronx-born Gottlieb lived a retiring life with his wife and four children on a farm, drank only milk from his own goats, and sold the Christmas trees he grew himself by the side of the road. Brilliant and thoroughly dedicated to his craft, Gottlieb held a Ph.D. from Cal Tech, overcame his physical disability by learning how to folk dance, and shared with Dulles a certain awe in the potential of mind-altering substances to shift the balance of terror with the Soviets.