Conspiracy Theories are all over the Internet

I was in the military and stationed at Fort Meade in Maryland. The base is unique because it cozies up to the National Security Agency (NSA) so you can believe in the wake of September 11th that security is heightened.

This event takes place about 12 years ago. I was in school there living in a barracks with about 150 other students. The only free time we had typically was evenings that were duty free and weekends.

Since we lived in the barracks, there was no privacy and obviously a lot of strict rules about alcohol. Being a young woman in my twenties, I had a taste for the night life. I liked having drinks and partying just as much as the next person so my roommate and I would take ‘walks’ around base. What we really did was fill up a soda bottle with airplane bottles of liquor we bought at the little shopette nearby and we’d walk around drinking. After we caught a nice buzz, we’d retire to the barracks for the night. We had a method of doing this for a while.

One evening a “fleet returnee” meaning a sailor who had been out in the fleet and was returning to school rather than a pipeline student (straight from boot camp like myself) caught us on the smoke deck.

He asked if we knew about Fort Meade. This was his second time attending school there so he knew all about the base including some empty buildings on the far end that had long since been abandoned. He told us if we were looking for a place to drink and hang out, some of those abandoned spots were perfect.

“But be careful,” he told us.

I remember nodding and saying, “Well yeah I am sure the MPs watch those places.”

“Yeah but you should be more concerned about WHY they watch those places,” he said lighting up a smoke.

My roommate, Ronda, was immediately curious, “What are you talking about?”

The young petty officer leaned in and lowered his voice, “Fort Meade is a crazy place.”

“Well duh,” Ronda offered a chuckle.

His face grew grim and he said, “No. Really. Back in the 1940s, this place was doing some really out there stuff. Experiments.”

“What do you mean experiments?” I asked him.

He was almost whispering, “They were doing some mind control experiments. The military literally created zombies out of soldiers. They were taking enlisted men and pumping them full of different drugs and doing a lot of sleep deprivation experiments and just weird shit. It was all part of that whole MK Ultra thing and it was during the World War. They wanted to create these super soldiers.” Ronda sighed, “You’re fucking with us, right?”

I could tell by his face he was not.

“No way. I’m just telling you ladies really as a safety precaution. I mean when you’re out on one of your walks or whatever it is you are both doing you’ll be prepared in case anything weird happens.” I was intrigued with his story, “How do you know this?”

“Well its my second time going to school here. About six years ago when I was first in training here I had a senior enlisted person share some stuff with me. He spent many years working in PSYOPS programs. I totally believed it too. I also started poking around a little bit and found out some more on my own. I legitimately believe its all true.”

Ronda shrugged, “Um, okay, so what happened to all these zombie soldiers?”

“Well they closed down the projects on this base and when the NSA opened they moved some of the testing and experiments over there. I’ve heard that they have some of the subjects held captive there like prisoners. A lot of people think our government stopped doing those experiments after WW2 but that’s simply untrue. For the past 60 years, the military has been trying to create these super soldiers. They call them Sleepers. Some of them are programmed and sent back out into the fleet like nothing ever happened to them.”

Ronda chuckled, “You’re just messing with us.”

“No,” he said, “I’m really not. The Sleepers are often drugged and subjected to experiments. Then they are brainwashed into thinking nothing happened and return home from ‘deployments’ but they never actually served overseas. Their minds are totally broken. They get some PTSD diagnosis and some of them end up offing themselves. It’s a real problem but they keep it hush hush. And there is a trail behind the golf course and the fence line backs up to the NSA. I have known people who have been over there and seen the soldiers out at night. They let them out like prisoners for like an hour a day but its usually at night when no one will see.” This was exciting but also sounded a lot like urban legend or the plot to some bad action movie.

Ronda seemed to be amused by the story but pressed on that she did not believe any of it was true.

“I’m telling you the boarded up buildings the ones on the far edge down past the cemetery, go down there. They look like old bunkers. Inside you’ll find hospital beds, restraints and they look like laboratories. The stuff is really old. The buildings are all boarded up but you can easily bust in. Some of the windows are already missing. Peek in.”

I shrugged, “No thanks. I’m not getting busted over something dumb like that.”

He was shaking now, “I’m not even kidding but look if you don’t believe me that’s fine. Just don’t say anything to anybody. I really said too much.”

Ronda laughed, “Don’t worry. We won’t spill the beans on your top secret intel.”

The Petty Officer crushed his cigarette under a boot, “One of the programs is called Project Mirror. Fort Meade is not the only base where this happened. They also tried it at a base in Arizona. There is a series of underground tunnels all over this base too.”

“Why are you even telling us this?” I asked.

He sighed, “I don’t know. I’m pretty observant and I just wanted you to know. I know what you’ve been doing. I just want you to be careful.”

A few days after this conversation, we had somewhat forgotten about the conversation we’d had out on the smoke deck.

It was a Thursday night in October so the air was definitely getting that crisp bite. Ronda and I decided to venture off on a walk with two other guys from our barracks.

Shannon, Derek, Ronda and I followed the trail that winded around the golf course. Shannon had some alcohol and found a spot off the trail in a wooded area where we might share a few shots. We stood there talking and cracking jokes for a few minutes. Derek excused himself deeper in the woods calling out, “I’ve got to take a leak!”

Suddenly without any kind of warning Derek comes barreling out of the darkness at full speed, “RUN!”

“What?” Shannon called out. We heard a rustling in the woods like something was chasing him and fast.

The three of us immediately darted off in different directions as fast as we could. It was dark and wooded so there were trees everywhere. A few times I felt myself tripping over branches and feeling completely unsure of how we got off the trail and into this forested area to begin with.

The next thing I know I see light down an embankment. I run as fast as I can still hearing something behind me.

Once I was on the greens of the golf course, I could see a street lamp illuminating the area. I stopped once I got to the greenway and quickly turned around. I saw two figures in the shadows on the edges of the course. They slipped back into the darkness. In a few minutes I caught up to my friends who had finally rejoined on the sidewalk that lined the golf course from the main entrance.

“What the fuck?” Shannon said panting and slapped at Derek.

Derek was out of breathe too, “Look man, I have no idea what that was.”

Ronda groaned, “It was probably the MPs. I bet we’re on some kind of security cameras and we get into trouble!”

“Naw, girl. That was not military police,” Derek told her.

Shannon agreed, “Yeah the MPs will usually call out and demand you stop. They would’ve questioned us and asked for identification.”

“It could have been security.” I chimed in.

Derek was genuinely freaked out, “I really don’t think so. I mean I’m taking a wiz one minute and the next thing I know I see these four things running toward me. They didn’t even seem human.”

“How could you even tell? It’s dark out there,” I said.

Derek nodded, “It is dark but my eyes had adjusted enough to see that something was not right.”

“We should just wait it out. See if anyone comes asking about us,” Shannon said.

Ronda added, “We weren’t even really doing anything wrong. I don’t think there is a curfew on the golf course.”

“Yeah but those woods back up next to NSA. I’ve been running on that trail. If you take your time getting by they send an armed guard over to the fence to ask what the hell you’re doing,” Derek told us.

We returned to the barracks not mentioning the incident to anyone.

A few days later I noticed the Petty Officer had not been around. I asked one of the military training instructors where he was. “He got a special assignment,” He told me.

I nodded, “Oh okay. Even from training? I thought he was in school here.”

His eyes grew narrow and he said, “You don’t need to know.”

A few hours later I was called into an office. I was told to take a seat and listen up. An officer wearing khakis and a Commander’s rank whom I had never seen before walked in and closed the door behind me. He told me he was with Naval District Washington. He was aware of the conversation which had taken place outside the building. He wanted to inform me that there were eyes and ears everywhere. He said the proper channels were also aware of the incident that had happened in the woods by NSA. As long as I never mentioned it again and forgot what happened no one would receive any kinds of punishment. He also told me not to ask any more questions about the Petty Officer who had been reassigned.

Some years later I met up with some service members in San Diego. Somehow the Petty Officer’s name was mentioned (as our community was rather small) and I said I had known him. I inquired about where he was and what he was doing.

“Well he got deployed on some special assignment. He was gone for almost a year. When he came back he was not the same at all. He started drinking and doing drugs. He was eventually discharged and soon after hung himself. At that point he had completely lost it. Poor guy.”

This all happened about 12 years ago. From the online obituary I was able to find very little information about the suicide other than knowing it happened about 10 years ago.

Over the years I’ve found very little information mostly forums and threads with some mention of Fort Meade. Some of the conspiracy theories are quite similar in nature.

I’m still not sure about any of it. I just know sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night and I feel like someone has been in my house. I get a weird sense that there are eyes and ears everywhere. I’m not sure what might happen after I post this.

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