The Truth About Harvey Point | News Feature | Indy Week
Pin It

The Truth About Harvey Point 

Facts about the CIA's activities at Harvey Point, along with other details about the secretive facility, have seeped out slowly over the years. Pieces of the puzzle have surfaced in government documents, investigative news reports and accounts by former CIA officers. Below is a chronological summary of previous disclosures about the base.

1961: The U.S. Navy announces in June that it will establish a secret weapons testing facility at Harvey Point. A spokesman says that some of the training currently conducted at Camp Perry in Virginia will be moved here. (Camp Perry is later identified as the CIA's main officer training school.)

1967: The magazine Ramparts, in the midst of a series of exposés on the CIA's domestic operations, publishes a detailed testimonial by an anonymous former CIA officer. He writes that he decided to quit the agency because of what he was taught at "demolition training headquarters." He does not, however, name the location of the base.

1974: In their groundbreaking intelligence history, The CIA and the Cult of Intelligence, former CIA officer Victor Marchetti and former State Department officer John Marks note that "demolitions and heavy weapons" are "taught at a secret CIA base in North Carolina."

1975: The President's Commission on CIA Activities within the United States offers the first official disclosure about Harvey Point in its final report. The report reveals only a portion of the CIA's activities, however, saying merely that the agency has used the facility for training domestic and foreign policy forces in bomb detection and disposal.

1976: "Purported CIA Base Classified, Fenced," says the headline of an article in the Burlington Daily Times-News, which reports mounting speculation about the agency's activities at Harvey Point.

1978: Outside magazine reveals that the CIA trained amateur mountain climbers at Harvey Point in the early 1960s. The climbers were ultimately sent into a remote region of India on a failed mission to place a listening station that would monitor Chinese nuclear tests.

Shortly thereafter, The Virginian-Pilot and The Ledger-Star, a newspaper in Norfolk, Va., publishes the most detailed article to date about the CIA and Harvey Point. Titled "CIA Missions Have Mysterious N.C. Roots," the article reveals that the facility has been instrumental in training U.S. and foreign operatives for some of the agency's most sensitive projects.

1985: The Washington Post reveals that the CIA has trained a force of Lebanese operatives to rescue U.S. hostages and stage paramilitary attacks. The group winds up killing 80 civilians in a failed assassination attempt. Leaders of the group received CIA training in North Carolina, writer Amir Taheri reveals in his 1988 book, Nest of Spies.

1998: The New York Times reports that the CIA recently trained security forces from the Palestinian Authority at Harvey Point.

1999: Jane's Intelligence Review, a respected journal based in London, publishes a detailed report on the CIA's commando units, revealing additional details about the training at Harvey Point.

Nov. 2001: Washington Post reporter Bob Woodward reports that CIA paramilitary operatives are leading the way in the war against the Taliban. A follow-up report in the London newspaper the Guardian notes that the operatives trained at Harvey Point.

Jan. 2002: In his book See No Evil, which is vetted by the CIA prior to publication, former CIA officer Bob Baer describes his two weeks at Harvey Point. "By the end of the training, we could have taught an advanced terrorism course," he writes.

More by Jon Elliston


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

INDY Week publishes all kinds of comments, but we don't publish everything.

  • Comments that are not contributing to the conversation will be removed.
  • Comments that include ad hominem attacks will also be removed.
  • Please do not copy and paste the full text of a press release.

Permitted HTML:
  • To create paragraphs in your comment, type <p> at the start of a paragraph and </p> at the end of each paragraph.
  • To create bold text, type <b>bolded text</b> (please note the closing tag, </b>).
  • To create italicized text, type <i>italicized text</i> (please note the closing tag, </i>).
  • Proper web addresses will automatically become links.

Latest in News Feature

Twitter Activity


I don't remember Obama being asked to apologize for the Black panthers during his administration. And I don't remember Obama …

by Timothy Oswald on North Carolina Militia Activists Take Up President Trump’s Fear of a Migrant, Muslim Planet (News Feature)

Most Read

Most Recent Comments

I don't remember Obama being asked to apologize for the Black panthers during his administration. And I don't remember Obama …

by Timothy Oswald on North Carolina Militia Activists Take Up President Trump’s Fear of a Migrant, Muslim Planet (News Feature)

It seems to me all these people are looking in the wrong direction. If we wan't to protect our kids …

by Timothy Oswald on Why We March: Ten Thousand People Took to Downtown Raleigh Streets to Say Enough Is Enough (News Feature)

I read him all the time and reading thru these comments, Christian's are crazy and hateful. So glad I am …

by LisaNH on How Raleigh’s John Pavlovitz Went from Fired Megachurch Pastor to Rising Star of the Religious Left (News Feature)

The ease with which Google can install its fiber network depends on each city's infrastructure, size, permitting process and staffing. …

by Quality Backlink on What to expect when you're expecting Google Fiber (News Feature)

© 2018 Indy Week • 320 E. Chapel Hill St., Suite 200, Durham, NC 27701 • phone 919-286-1972 • fax 919-286-4274
RSS Feeds | Powered by Foundation