Towards the end of 2016, U.S. diplomats stationed in Cuba started complaining about headaches, nausea, hearing loss and balance issues, with many becoming so sick that they had to return home to the United States. At first, nobody could understand what was going on, but after an investigation it became apparent that the diplomats had been on the receiving end of some kind of sonic attack which had resulted in traumatic brain injury and possible central nervous system damage. About three dozen people were affected.
Though the Cuban government denied any involvement in the attacks, it was later determined that the attacks took place when the diplomats were in their homes – homes which were provided by the Cubans. At the time, the State Department reminded the Cuban government of its responsibility to protect diplomats in that country, and expelled two officials from the Cuban Embassy in Washington in retaliation. Secretary of State Rex Tilleson also made it clear that Cuba would be held responsible for finding out who was behind the attacks.
Now, 18 months later, more details have emerged about what was really going on during the attacks, which caused a massive diplomatic rift between Cuba and the United States. The embassy was abandoned after the attacks and has since remained unoccupied. (Related: Threat of global nuclear war now even higher than during the Cold War.)
The team of scientists and doctors commissioned with getting to the bottom of the attack have concluded that microwave radiation was used. As noted by The New York Times, this type of weapon is nothing new. During the Cold War, the American government was concerned that the Russians were trying to use it to create mind control weapons (some microwaves can be heard as sounds which can be used to transmit messages to the brain). Even the American government itself has tried to use it to create psychological weapons. (Related: Microwave radiation from cell phones implicated in cancer and reproductive issues — companies quietly warn customers of dangers.)
Nonetheless, it is an unusual choice of weapon, and it was only after examining 21 of the victims that doctors were able to determine that microwave radiation had, in fact, been used.
“Everybody was relatively skeptical at first,’’ Dr. Douglas H. Smith, the lead author of a study investigating the victims’ injuries, told the New York Post (NYP) in an interview. “[But] everyone now agrees there’s something there.”
According to Dr. Smith, he and his colleagues who studied the health effects of the attacks, have become “increasingly sure” that the victims sustained injuries to their brains.
The NYP reported:
Analysts cite the Frey effect, named after an American scientist who discovered that microwaves can make victims think they’re hearing loud noises like ringing and buzzing — or human voices.
Even deaf people are susceptible.
Allan Frey, 83, told The Times it’s possible microwave strikes — which can harm the brain — were set off by Cubans, possibly those supporting Russia. The goal, he theorized, was sabotaging Havana’s growing ties with Washington. …
Members of “Jason,” described by the newspaper as a “secretive group of elite scientists that helps the government assess new threats to national security,” are also looking at microwaves as a possible cause.
Of course, the State Department is playing the “nothing-to-see-here” game and is insisting that it has not established what caused the diplomats’ health issues while they were in Cuba. Watch this space to keep up with developments as the story of this mysterious incident unfolds.
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