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9 October 2012

Osama bin Laden Compound Raid Mock-up

Anonymous sends:

In No Easy Day, the book written by the Navy Seal about getting Bin Laden, he stated that they trained in North Carolina. If you go to Google Maps and put in these coordinates at Harvey Point Defense Testing (CIA training facility) there is nothing but an clearing in a field. If you go to the lower link in Virtual Globetrotting and look at the same location it appears to be the mock-up training facility for the Bin Laden raid. It is not completed in the photo, but there is enough built to say it is an almost exact copy of Bin Laden's compound.

Google Maps


Bing Maps

Osama bin Laden Compound Raid Mock-up

Construction and Demolition of the Bin Laden Compound Mock-up, Harvey Point, NC.

The one month period of the top two photos indicate the facility was constructed quite quickly, perhaps after confirmation of the target required speedy construction for training.

The bottom left photo was taken two days before the raid on May 1, 2011, thus training had been completed. It appears trees and vegetation in the garden had been added to simulate the actual site, perhaps to avoid helicopter landing there.

The left courtyard of the mock-up does not match the actual site's courtyard size and location. A model of the site was more accurate and was likely based on information gathered after that used for the mock-up.

With the careful attention to raid preparation No Easy Day describes, there could have been an expectation that the facility might appear on a public image site or details leaked by a construction worker, some mock-up features may have been constructed to differ from the target compound. Moreover, there may have been one or more mock-ups elsewhere as decoys and/or for training the multiple teams described in the book -- the book's author says a run-through practice took place at an unnamed base with a mock-up for VIP observation -- and "out west."  No Easy Day excerpts below. If found send to cryptome[at]

There is no certainty that the book's author told the whole truth (he admits to being sketchy about aspects of the training and the raid), more likely some (maybe all) of the book is customary CIA/DoD/SEAL cloaking and disinformation about operations.

It is clear that Google Earth omitted the sensitive images -- the site's historical imagery jumps from March 17, 2010 to January 30, 2012 -- as an instance of its cooperation with governments worldwide. That Microsoft's Bing did not is to be commended. even if an oversight.

Four images removed:

From: "Kittie Miller" <kittie[at]>
To: <cryptome[at]>
Cc: <brf[at]>
Subject: TerraServer Images
Date: Thu, 11 Oct 2012 13:40:46 -0400

Mr. John Young,

It’s awesome to see our four TerraServer images on your website, You provided attribution, “”, however you need a license not only to publish the images but also to be able to remove the copyright/logos.

We have done a lot of media licensing for the images. Yesterday we worked with ABC News to get them the four images of the same location. Tuesday, our image licensed through TerraServer aired on NCIS: LA as a background shot. The media licenses are affordable. For a news site, they typically range from $100-$200 per image. Since the images have already been published on the website, you need to purchase a license.

TerraServer has been partners with DigitalGlobe for eight years and is an official reseller of DigitalGlobe images.

Please contact me so we can help you resolve this copyright issue as soon as possible.


Kittie Miller
Licensing Manager

5995 Chapel Hill Road #109
Raleigh, NC 27607
Phone: 877.878.9248

Bin Laden Compound Mock-Up, Harvey Point, NC, Under Construction, February 15, 2011.


Bin Laden Compound, Abbottabad, Pakistan, After the Raid, May 11, 2011. Google Earth/GeoEye


Bin Laden Compound Mock-Up, Harvey Point, NC,  After Demolition, January 30, 2012. Google Earth


Pentagon model of the site.




No Easy Day excerpts


Location of the run-through not provided.