Bomb School

| June 28, 2002 Issue

T he 2,000 residents of Hertford, NC, live in a personable community of local businesses, thriving agriculture, and a top-secret CIA base where agents train to deal with terrorist situations, bombs and all. Jon Elliston reports in The Independent Weekly on the public's growing awareness of "Harvey Point" and the secret activities taking place there.

"The CIA's covert warriors train as secretly as they spy and fight," writes Elliston, "So at Harvey Point, the boom! boom! is very hush-hush."

Since the Defense Department claimed the marshy area as the CIA's secret demolitions training base in 1961, practically nothing has been revealed about the base. A few years ago, Harvey Point's director gave a group of 25 local officials a rare "tour" of the base, after which some sent a thank-you note saying "When we hear an explosion from that general direction or feel the ground shake due to the same, we will, from our experience, know, in some degree, what it is for. We will now be able to explain to our people why we have the Base and what it is doing for our Nation."

But the town's quiet acceptance is mixed with an unease, writes Elliston, noting that "local leaders readily admit, they still don't know the details about who trains at Harvey Point, and to what ends."

"I don't know what they're doing," one resident told Elliston. "It's very obviously explosives, because you can feel the vibrations. But I'm not that concerned, so I don't pay any attention to it, no more than thunder."
--Julie Madsen
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