'Havana Syndrome': Diplomatic Staff Malaise In Cuba & China—A Sonic Or Microwave Weapon?

EnolaGaia

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Problem solved?
Finally, a Likely Explanation for the “Sonic Weapon” Used at the U.S. Embassy in Cuba

Let's hope so ...

There had been isolated suggestions the mystery sound may have been a composite generated via interference, but this is the first evidence that someone's seriously examined that angle.
 

blessmycottonsocks

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GNC

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Seeing as how the common denominator is US employees, might it be a hysteria thing among that nation's diplomats? Though that doesn't explain the injury, unless they were injured before they heard the mystery noise.
 

blessmycottonsocks

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Seeing as how the common denominator is US employees, might it be a hysteria thing among that nation's diplomats? Though that doesn't explain the injury, unless they were injured before they heard the mystery noise.

"Seeing as how the common denominator is US employees"

And totalitarian, Communist states of course!
 

Schrodinger's Zebra

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I heard about this earlier today, the latest incident in China and they mentioned the previous one in Cuba.
Reading through this thread I had a couple of thoughts

- could the brain changes / white matter being affected be what caused the hearing loss, if it was in that area of the brain? as opposed to damage to the ear itself?

- I can't wrap my head around something that is noticeable to the person lying in bed (as in one report mentioned) but a few feet away and he's fine. surely sounds don't localise like that?

- I know mass hysteria is a thing, but that wouldn't cause physical damage to a person so I'm skeptical about that. I'm also curious as to why it's only Americans affected - unless they're the only ones we've heard about?

I saw there was a link posted on page 2 I think it was, a link to a recording of the sound.. I'm curious but at the same time a little bit afraid to click the link in case the sound terrifies me (yeah I'm a wuss). Is it really ok to listen to? I can see from the replies that some of you have, but I'm of a nervous disposition at the best of times :sorry:
 

GNC

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"Seeing as how the common denominator is US employees"

And totalitarian, Communist states of course!

Yebbut there's a big difference between Cuba and China - do they collude?
 

blessmycottonsocks

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Yebbut there's a big difference between Cuba and China - do they collude?

196 countries on Earth, but only 5 that still follow communism (China, Cuba, Laos, Vietnam and North Korea).
 

ramonmercado

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Wouldn't it better to discuss the Fortean Topic: the Sonic Weapon (which may or may not exist) rather than to turn yet another thread into a political Punch n Judy Show?

Why not just go to Politics Sites to discuss politics?
 

hunck

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I saw there was a link posted on page 2 I think it was, a link to a recording of the sound.. I'm curious but at the same time a little bit afraid to click the link in case the sound terrifies me (yeah I'm a wuss). Is it really ok to listen to? I can see from the replies that some of you have, but I'm of a nervous disposition at the best of times :sorry:

There's nothing too fearsome about it - a high pitched whistling white noise. There's only a few seconds of it & no indication of where it was recorded. You can probably give it a miss.
 

Schrodinger's Zebra

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There's nothing too fearsome about it - a high pitched whistling white noise. There's only a few seconds of it & no indication of where it was recorded. You can probably give it a miss.

Thank you :) We just gave it a listen and neither of us thought much of it, in all seriousness! Perhaps if hearing it for a long time it might get annoying, but people react differently so maybe it affects others more.

It's not a patch on the occasional high-pitched whistling noise I often hear in my right ear though, that's a much stronger sound. Makes a change from the usual constant sssssssssssssssssssss noise I get though. :D
 

Mythopoeika

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It's not a patch on the occasional high-pitched whistling noise I often hear in my right ear though, that's a much stronger sound. Makes a change from the usual constant sssssssssssssssssssss noise I get though. :D
I have exactly the same problem.
 

Schrodinger's Zebra

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I have exactly the same problem.

Ah, helloo fellow tinnitus-sufferer :) Sorry to hear you have this too. It's quite annoying at times, isn't it? I find I can ignore it if there is background noise, TV, music. But in the quiet... well, there isn't really any quiet for us, is there.
 

hunck

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Ah, helloo fellow tinnitus-sufferer :) Sorry to hear you have this too. It's quite annoying at times, isn't it? I find I can ignore it if there is background noise, TV, music. But in the quiet... well, there isn't really any quiet for us, is there.

Join the club here
 

EnolaGaia

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Seeing as how the common denominator is US employees, might it be a hysteria thing among that nation's diplomats? ...

Canadian diplomatic personnel in Havana also reported the same sort of mystery malaise and audible effects.
 

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Canadian diplomatic personnel in Havana also reported the same sort of mystery malaise and audible effects.

But how would a sonic weapon determine your geographical, political stance?
 

EnolaGaia

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But how would a sonic weapon determine your geographical, political stance?

It wouldn't / it can't.

I'm still of the opinion the malaise probably wasn't induced sonically. Instead, I believe it's more likely the reported noise perceptions represent either a side-effect of the mystery stressor causing the malaise or a symptom of the malaise itself.
 
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GNC

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It wouldn't / it can't.

I'm still of the opinion the malaise probably wasn't induced sonically. Instead, I believe it's more likely the reported noise perceptions represent either a side-effect of the mystery stressor causing the malaise or a symptom of the malaise itself.

It's easier to believe somebody slipped something into their drink, I'd say.
 

EnolaGaia

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The mystery (hysteria? malaise?) is spreading internationally. Over the last few weeks there have been repeated reports of similar problems involving US diplomatic personnel in China.

More Americans Are Being Evacuated from China Following Mysterious 'Sonic Attacks'
A medical mystery deepens in China.

On Wednesday (June 6), a U.S. government employee and his family were evacuated from the city of Guangzhou in order to receive medical testing for unexplained neurological symptoms ...

The departure comes two weeks after another government employee was evacuated from the city after experiencing mysterious symptoms that have been likened to the so-called "sonic attacks" that afflicted U.S. embassy workers in Cuba last year. The Guangzhou employee "reported subtle and vague, but abnormal sensations of sound and pressure," according to a statement from the U.S. Embassies and Consulates in China, and was later diagnosed with mild traumatic brain injury, the BBC reported. Additional medical tests were administered to U.S. government employees in China following the first employee's evacuation, which resulted in several more individuals being diagnosed this week, the State Department said.

It's not clear exactly how many Americans showed neurological symptoms or were evacuated on Wednesday, but the State Department said "a number of individuals" had been brought home for further medical testing. At least one of the evacuees worked for the American Consulate in Guangzhou ...

These cases in China have expanded a medical crisis that began in Cuba in 2016, when a number of U.S. embassy employees reported hearing loud, bizarre noises and subsequently reported severe neurological symptoms. After hearing the noises, a total of 24 of these employees and their family members were stricken with mysterious headaches, hearing loss, dizziness and, ultimately, brain damage. Ten Canadian diplomats were also evacuated from the island, showing similar symptoms ...

The U.S. government has characterized these incidents as deliberate sonic "attacks" on embassy workers by unknown actors. A report published in February in the medical journal JAMA disputed the theory that a sonic weapon was to blame, but could not pinpoint an alternative explanation for the mysterious symptoms.

In a statement on Tuesday (June 5), U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that he had created a health care task force to deal with "the unexplained health incidents that have affected a number of U.S. government personnel and family members stationed overseas,” The New York Times reported. Whether other embassy employees working outside of Cuba and China have experienced similar symptoms was not clear.

SOURCE: https://www.livescience.com/62760-americans-evacuated-china-sonic-attack.html

Edit to Add:

here's another new article summarizing what's been happening in China:

https://apnews.com/09dab0a6ac2d4e55...hina-sends-new-alert-for-mystery-health-issue
 
Last edited:

Schrodinger's Zebra

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I saw a video just this morning saying there had been another attacks. Sorry if this has already been asked, but could it be some disease or illness (i.e. not a weapon) which these people are suffering from which causes... a stroke or something similar, but also auditory disruption?

I.e. rather than a weapon causing a noise which causes brain damage, is it a medical problem in the brain which results in noises being heard by the victim (Cause and effect the other way around) ?
 

ramonmercado

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I saw a video just this morning saying there had been another attacks. Sorry if this has already been asked, but could it be some disease or illness (i.e. not a weapon) which these people are suffering from which causes... a stroke or something similar, but also auditory disruption?

I.e. rather than a weapon causing a noise which causes brain damage, is it a medical problem in the brain which results in noises being heard by the victim (Cause and effect the other way around) ?

Could be the case.

Post links if you can.
 

EnolaGaia

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I saw a video just this morning saying there had been another attacks. Sorry if this has already been asked, but could it be some disease or illness (i.e. not a weapon) which these people are suffering from which causes... a stroke or something similar, but also auditory disruption?

I.e. rather than a weapon causing a noise which causes brain damage, is it a medical problem in the brain which results in noises being heard by the victim (Cause and effect the other way around) ?

Yes - to both questions. The results of the Cuban victims' detailed examinations (reported earlier) don't support the notion it was a single point cause, the effects were externally induced, or that the victims' biological states had nothing to do with what happened.
 

hunck

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The mystery (hysteria? malaise?) is spreading internationally. Over the last few weeks there have been repeated reports of similar problems involving US diplomatic personnel in China.



SOURCE: https://www.livescience.com/62760-americans-evacuated-china-sonic-attack.html

Edit to Add:

here's another new article summarizing what's been happening in China:

https://apnews.com/09dab0a6ac2d4e55...hina-sends-new-alert-for-mystery-health-issue

It's looking a bit like hysteria of some sort. You'd think US officials would issue all their staff with recorders if they suspect sound is the cause.

The report is very vague as to how many have been affected in China & what sort of symptoms they have.

I hadn't realised that Canada had also recalled staff from Cuba
after mysterious health symptoms were detected in 10 Canadians stationed on the island. Canada said the 10 continued to show unexplained brain symptoms and that “medical information raised concerns for a new type of a possible acquired brain injury."
 

ramonmercado

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More news.

Sonic attack or mass paranoia? New evidence stokes debate over diplomats’ mysterious illness

But a few researchers are finding hints of a physical cause. In February, a team at the University of Pennsylvania described neurological deficits in embassy personnel who had reported symptoms. And in unpublished results, Michael Hoffer, an otolaryngologist at the University of Miami in Florida, and his colleagues describe a unique vestibular and cognitive disorder in two dozen people evacuated from the Havana embassy. They believe some kind of directed energy device may have caused inner-ear damage.

Taking both teams' observations together, "It seems like something's going on," says Lee Goldstein of Boston University, who studies neurodegenerative diseases. But, he adds, "We're still very much in the early days of trying to figure this out."

The first to fall ill was a U.S. intelligence agent in Havana. The "index case," as Hoffer calls him, complained to the embassy doctor of ear pain, tinnitus, vertigo, and feeling "cognitively not perfect." The agent said he had heard "a really odd, loud noise that seemed to follow him in the room," says Hoffer, who examined him in February. "When he opened the front door, the sound went away." Other U.S. personnel reported similar symptoms....

http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2018...ly_2018-06-20&et_rid=394299689&et_cid=2127511
 

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Perhaps the embassy needs to be constructed in the same fashion as an anechoic room -chamber?
 

EnolaGaia

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Having read the most recent items about this mystery, I'm struck by the number of allusions to 'concussion' and 'pressure' being made by the medical professionals who've actually been researching the victims.

This has made me wonder if the overarching characterization of a possible cause as 'sonic' is misleading, at least for the general public.

Sound waves propagate as pressure changes (compression / diminution). This doesn't mean that any such wave-like pressure changes are 'sound' in the colloquial sense (i.e., 'that which our auditory sense hears').

I wonder if what's happening here indeed involves some sort of mechanical (in the strict sense of physics) percussive or concussive effect that isn't properly construable as 'sound' in the everyday sense.
 

Jim

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Having read the most recent items about this mystery, I'm struck by the number of allusions to 'concussion' and 'pressure' being made by the medical professionals who've actually been researching the victims.

This has made me wonder if the overarching characterization of a possible cause as 'sonic' is misleading, at least for the general public.

Sound waves propagate as pressure changes (compression / diminution). This doesn't mean that any such wave-like pressure changes are 'sound' in the colloquial sense (i.e., 'that which our auditory sense hears').

I wonder if what's happening here indeed involves some sort of mechanical (in the strict sense of physics) percussive or concussive effect that isn't properly construable as 'sound' in the everyday sense.

Agreed, sound waves are technically defined in the audio range. However as pointed out percussive wave could be produced that technically are not a sound wave since it's not in the human audio range of ~50 Hz to 20 KHz for those with a very keen ear.
 
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