Uri Geller psychic spy? The spoon-bender's secret life as a Mossad and CIA agent revealed

view gallery VIEW GALLERY

A new documentary claims the showbiz psychic is involved in global espionage - and that after 9/11 he was 'reactivated' as a pyschic spy. Geoffrey Macnab finds out more

We may know him for spoon bending antics and for his lengthy friendship with pop star Michael Jackson but showbiz psychic Uri Geller has seemingly had a lengthy second career as a secret agent for Mossad and the CIA, albeit one that was more Austin Powers than James Bond.

Geller was at the Sheffield Doc Fest this week for the premiere of Vikram Jayanti’s The Secret Life Of Uri Geller – Psychic Spy?, a new film that offers compelling evidence of his involvement in the shadowy world of espionage. 

“Uri has a controversial reputation. A lot of people think he is a fraud, a lot of people think he is a trickster and makes things up but at the same time he has a huge following and a history of doing things that nobody can explain,” Jayanti says of his Zelig-like subject.

Speaking to The Independent, Geller acknowledged alarm when he first saw Jayanti’s documentary.

“I was worried and I am still concerned,” Geller said of the way the documentary outs him as a spy. “I didn’t realise that Vikram was going to do such a thorough job of tying all the loose ends…making that the little hints I dropped throughout my career were real.”

When he signed up for the doc, the psychic didn’t realise quite how diligently Jayanti would track down his old spy masters. Nonetheless, he is happy that the doc is showing “a serious side” to him. “Some countries think I am a freak, bizarre, an eccentric,” he sighs. 

On camera and in interview, Geller still remains coy about his espionage activities. Nonetheless, the psychic acknowledges that his handlers once asked him to use telepathy to stop a pig’s heart. He refused, knowing that if he had succeeded, the next target would almost certainly have been a human.

“I tried to execute missions that were positive,” Geller claims. “I said ‘no’ to dark things.”

Jayanti didn’t rely on Geller’s own cryptic testimony. Instead, he spoke to the high-level officials involved in recruiting and using him. These include scientists from The Stanford Research Institute as well as senior CIA operatives. Among the interviewees with first hand knowledge of Geller’s psychic spying activities are former CIA officer Kit Green, Apollo 14 astronaut Edgar Mitchell (the sixth man to walk on the moon), physicists Russell Targ and Hal Puthoff, and retired US army colonel John Alexander (of The Men Who Stared At Goats fame). A Brit, Nick Pope, once the British Government’s UFO boffin, also puts in an appearance. We also learn about Geller's stint as a psychic bodyguard for Mexican President Jose Lopez Portillo.

The doc leaves a question mark in its title but provides so much background evidence that we are left in little doubt that even its most outlandish assertions are rooted in truth. Whether or not Geller had psychic powers, US security forces were certainly prepared to take a very hefty wager on him.

It is inferred that Geller attempted to use his psychic powers to disable radar during the “raid on Entebbe,” when Israeli commandos stormed a hijacked plane.

The spoon bender also used his mind powers to try erase the contents of floppy discs being carried back to Russia by Soviet diplomats in Mexico and to convince a Russian minister to sign a nuclear arms reduction treaty. (Geller is pictured alongside the minister flanked by a youthful and grinning US Vice-President Al Gore.)

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu appears in the doc, testifying to his many years of friendship with Geller.

Jayanti’s thesis is that Geller was recruited as the US security forces were caught up in “psychic arms race” with their Soviet rivals, who were almost certainly bluffing about the strength of their own psychic warriors.

“When Jimmy Carter was elected President, one of the first things he did was to have Uri Geller give him a four hour briefing on the Soviet psychic threat. America didn’t want a psychic gap and Uri was the go-to guy about these things,” Jayanti said. “Sometimes, you wonder whether Uri’s entire public career has actually been a front for his shadow world activities.”

After 9/11, Geller was apparently “re-activated” as a psychic spy.

The key formative event in Geller’s youth appears to have been his near-death experience while fighting for the Israeli army during the Six Day War. He came face to face with a Jordanian soldier and shot him to save his own life.

“Out of the entire war, that one incident, that split second of killing another human being, left me scarred and I definitely have recurring nightmares about that. I learned to live with it,” Geller tells me. “When I woke up in hospital in Jerusalem, I realised what I had committed…that soldier is embedded in my soul now. He is like my brother. That is the way I feel. Although these recurring nightmares are such that he comes and grabs me and says what did you do to me, I still feel his soul is in my soul.”

Although Geller is coy about how he helped the Mossad, he had one revealing anecdote about Israeli military leader Moshe Dayan in a restaurant.

“He (Dayan) was an avid collector of archaeological items, very ancient ones, four, five six thousand years old. They’re all around Israel. When he met me and saw my powers, the first question he asked me, after the serious questions of military use and all that…was ‘Uri, do you think you can find for me some archaeological artefacts with your powers.’ I said, ‘You know, Moshe, I’ve never done it but let’s try!’”

This led to various late night trips when Geller would take Dayan with him as he went dousing for ancient relics. “I found quite a few things for him. He loved it. He used to collect them in his garden.”

Spying for the CIA is one thing, football another. In Sheffield, Geller belatedly offered his apologies to the Scottish people for using his psychic powers from a helicopter above Wembley to try to make the ball move before Gary McAllister took his fateful, missed penalty against England during the Euro 1996 tournament. He acknowledged that was one occasion when he had most definitely crossed ethical lines.

“I then realised after I got hate letters, hundreds and hundreds from Scotland, that it was absolutely and utterly unethical,” Geller confessed. “Guess what, I bought a Scottish island. I made up with Scotland. I am an owner of a Scottish island. That, to me, means I am partially Scottish.”

(The Secret Life Of Uri Geller – Psychic Spy? Was a premiere at the Sheffield Doc/Fest and will be broadcast by the BBC later in the year.)

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Jeremy Paxman has admitted he is a 'one-nation Tory' and complained that Newsnight is made by idealistic '13-year-olds' who foolishly think they can 'change the world'.

Edinburgh
Arts and Entertainment
Seoul singer G-Dragon could lead the invasion as South Korea has its sights set on Western markets
music
Arts and Entertainment
Gary Lineker at the UK Premiere of 'The Hunger Games: Catching Fire'
tv
Arts and Entertainment
Christian Bale as Batman in a scene from
film
Arts and Entertainment
Johhny Cash in 1969
musicDyess Colony, where singer grew up in Depression-era Arkansas, opens to the public
Arts and Entertainment
Army dreamers: Randy Couture, Sylvester Stallone, Dolph Lundgren and Jason Statham
film
Arts and Entertainment
The Great British Bake Off 2014 contestants
tvReview: It's not going to set the comedy world alight but it's a gentle evening watch
Arts and Entertainment
Umar Ahmed and Kiran Sonia Sawar in ‘My Name Is...’
Theatre
Arts and Entertainment
This year's Big Brother champion Helen Wood
arts + ents
Arts and Entertainment
Full company in Ustinov's Studio's Bad Jews
Theatre
Arts and Entertainment
Harari Guido photographed Kate Bush over the course of 11 years
Music
Arts and Entertainment
Reviews have not been good for Jonathan Liebesman’s take on the much loved eighties cartoon
Film

A The film has amassed an estimated $28.7 million in its opening weekend

Arts and Entertainment
Untwitterably yours: Singer Morrissey has said he doesn't have a twitter account
Music

A statement was published on his fansite, True To You, following release of new album

Arts and Entertainment
Full throttle: Philip Seymour Hoffman and John Turturro in God's Pocket
film
Arts and Entertainment
Kylie Minogue is expected to return to Neighbours for thirtieth anniversary special
tv
Arts and Entertainment
The new film will be Lonely Island's second Hollywood venture following their 2007 film Hot Rod
film
Arts and Entertainment
The Great British Bake Off contestants line-up behind Sue and Mel in the Bake Off tent
tv
Arts and Entertainment
Daniel Day-Lewis stars in the movie There Will Be Blood
music
Arts and Entertainment
Brush with greatness: the artist Norman Cornish in 1999
art
Life and Style
Stress less: relaxation techniques can help focus the mind and put problems in context
art
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Ferguson: In the heartlands of America, a descent into madness

    A descent into madness in America's heartlands

    David Usborne arrived in Ferguson, Missouri to be greeted by a scene more redolent of Gaza and Afghanistan
    BBC’s filming of raid at Sir Cliff’s home ‘may be result of corruption’

    BBC faces corruption allegation over its Sir Cliff police raid coverage

    Reporter’s relationship with police under scrutiny as DG is summoned by MPs to explain extensive live broadcast of swoop on singer’s home
    Lauded therapist Harley Mille still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

    Lauded therapist still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

    Australian Harley Miller is as frustrated by court delays as she is with the idiosyncrasies of immigration law
    Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world. But could his predictions of war do the same?

    Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world...

    But could his predictions of war do the same?
    Kate Bush asks fans not to take photos at her London gigs: 'I want to have contact with the audience, not iPhones'

    'I want to have contact with the audience, not iPhones'

    Kate Bush asks fans not to take photos at her London gigs
    Under-35s have rated gardening in their top five favourite leisure activities, but why?

    Young at hort

    Under-35s have rated gardening in their top five favourite leisure activities. But why are so many people are swapping sweaty clubs for leafy shrubs?
    Tim Vine, winner of the Funniest Joke of the Fringe award: 'making a quip as funny as possible is an art'

    Beyond a joke

    Tim Vine, winner of the Funniest Joke of the Fringe award, has nigh-on 200 in his act. So how are they conceived?
    The late Peter O'Toole shines in 'Katherine of Alexandria' despite illness

    The late Peter O'Toole shines in 'Katherine of Alexandria' despite illness

    Sadly though, the Lawrence of Arabia star is not around to lend his own critique
    Wicken Fen in Cambridgeshire: The joy of camping in a wetland nature reserve and sleeping under the stars

    A wild night out

    Wicken Fen in Cambridgeshire offers a rare chance to camp in a wetland nature reserve
    Comic Sans for Cancer exhibition: It’s the font that’s openly ridiculed for its jaunty style, but figures of fun have their fans

    Comic Sans for Cancer exhibition

    It’s the font that’s openly ridiculed for its jaunty style, but figures of fun have their fans
    Besiktas vs Arsenal: Five things we learnt from the Champions League first-leg tie

    Besiktas vs Arsenal

    Five things we learnt from the Champions League first-leg tie
    Rory McIlroy a smash hit on the US talk show circuit

    Rory McIlroy a smash hit on the US talk show circuit

    As the Northern Irishman prepares for the Barclays, he finds time to appear on TV in the States, where he’s now such a global superstar that he needs no introduction
    Boy racer Max Verstappen stays relaxed over step up to Formula One

    Boy racer Max Verstappen stays relaxed over step up to F1

    The 16-year-old will become the sport’s youngest-ever driver when he makes his debut for Toro Rosso next season
    Fear brings the enemies of Isis together at last

    Fear brings the enemies of Isis together at last

    But belated attempts to unite will be to no avail if the Sunni caliphate remains strong in Syria, says Patrick Cockburn
    Charlie Gilmour: 'I wondered if I would end up killing myself in jail'

    Charlie Gilmour: 'I wondered if I'd end up killing myself in jail'

    Following last week's report on prison suicides, the former inmate asks how much progress we have made in the 50 years since the abolition of capital punishment