The Memory Suppressing Machine is a machine used by the Soviet Union and by HYDRA to erase or suppress the memories of a subject.
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Mission in Berlin
In 1987, a group of radicals in the Soviet-controlled East Berlin discovered a piece of an old HYDRA technology; the leaders of S.H.I.E.L.D. decided to send an Hank Pym to Berlin and stop them from reverse-engineering it. Upon arriving, Hank Pym soon locates the radicals' base of operation, easily bypassing a pair of guards to enter a room. He discovers plans for "some of HYDRA's old memory suppression experiments" before hearing screams which he follows to find a room containing a functioning machine with a man loaded inside, screaming in agony. A HYDRA agent orders the test stopped and asks the subject if he is ready for duty; the man responds that he is, announcing his loyalty to HYDRA. Moments later, the man begins to regain his memory and screams for help, and the HYDRA agent orders the man's mind wiped again.
Pym shrinks again and enters the room, using his tiny size to psychologically torment the HYDRA agent before beginning to destroy the machinery. He frees the test subject and distracts the HYDRA agents before momentarily returning to normal size and attacking them. He then shrinks again and flees on the wasp as additional HYDRA agents arrive.
On December 16, 1991, Barnes was reanimated from a Cryostasis Chamber at the HYDRA Siberian Facility and forced into the Memory Suppressing Machine to brainwash him while his handler, Colonel Vasily Karpov, recited his trigger words from the Winter Soldier Book. After reciting the words, the Winter Soldier would become active and be completely obedient to his handler, who then ordered him to steal a case of the Super Soldier Serum and assassinate Howard Stark and Maria Stark.
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Having regrouped with HYDRA after fighting Steve Rogers, Bucky Barnes was taken back to the Ideal Federal Savings Bank, a HYDRA Base where he became erratic and violent towards the doctors. After they repaired his arm, he began to remember fragments from his past. These fragments included his fall from the train, as well as the operations performed on him by Arnim Zola which threw him into a rage.
Alexander Pierce arrived at the Base to obtain Barnes' mission report, only to find Barnes unresponsive and refusing to speak until Pierce hit him across the face. Barnes claimed that he knew Steve Rogers somehow. Pierce claimed that he only remembered him because he had met him a few days ago when he had killed Nick Fury, but Barnes insisted that he knew him. Seeing that Barnes was not mentally fit to continue with his mission, Pierce ordered Barnes to undergo further mind alterations to force his cooperation.
- In the original draft of Captain America: Civil War, the headset of the Memory Suppressing Machine was referred as the Mind Crown and was going to be the main focus of Helmut Zemo's quest. The Russo replaced it with a book because they thought it would have been more convenient into the story. The Mind Crown was loosely inspired on the Serpent Crown from the comics.