Camp Peary, also known as "The Farm" is a covert training facility run by the Central Intelligence Agency. It is located in Williamsburg, Virginia.
Owen Hall, the former lead instructor at the facility described the covert training process as "it doesn't matter who you used to be or who you are. All that matters is who we teach you to be."
Camp Peary was originally established on the banks of the York River in 1942 as a training camp for Navy SeaBees. At some point following the Second World War, the property was transferred from the Navy to the CIA, which made Camp Peary its field operations training site.
The training period at Camp Peary lasts for about six months. In Kudove, Owen stated that the recruits would be trained in the art of deceit as well as learning trade-craft and paramilitary skills to ensure that they meet the minimum competency standards in order to become case officers. A class ranking system is implemented, which is affectionately known as the Murder Board. Every week after an assessment is conducted, the recruits will analyze their results and see where they stand. If a recruit is at the bottom of the list more than once or if they blow their cover during an assignment, their training will be halted and they will be escorted out of the premises of the training site.
Camp Peary is located in Williamsburg, Virginia. The facility, which occupies about 9,275 acres of land in a wooded area enclosed with chain-link fences, barbed wire, guards and 'No Trespassing' signs, has been an enigma along Interstate 64 since it opened on January 22, 1952. In 1994, it was believed to be a Department of Defense training facility for covert operations.
The existence of this facility is widely known, but has never been formally acknowledged by the U.S. government. Access to Camp Peary is strictly controlled, and all visitors to the installation on official business are escorted at all times. The portion of the original World War II Seabee base that is north of Interstate 64 has remained closed to the public since 1951. However, the roads and many structures of Magruder and Bigler's Mill are still there and many are occupied. An airport with a 5,000-foot (1,500 m) runway was added to the facility near the site of Bigler's Mill. Flight records show that at least 11 aircraft that appear to be owned by CIA front companies, and are believed to have been used as rendition aircraft by the CIA under the guise of charter flights have landed on this runway.
Former CIA officer Bill Wagner attended a three-week interrogation course at The Farm in 1970. He claims that it was the agency's "premier course," and that volunteers played the role of interrogation subjects in order to be guaranteed seats in future classes. Interrogators-in-training practised techniques such as sleep deprivation, deliberately tainted food, and mock executions. According to Wagner, the course was dropped from the CIA training curriculum after the Watergate scandal, due to increased attention being paid to CIA practices.