stirlo.space

The Cuban Mission Crisis—Who is hurting American Diplomats?

Many US diplomats, their families and now some Canadians have suffered traumatic brain injuries while working in their Cuban Missions…


During the peak of the Cold War, both the KGB and CIA wouldn’t use these tactics on relatives or friends of diplomats or suspected agents—even the toughest spy agencies have standards—and usually families and non-participants are “off limits” when it comes to dangerous weapons, assassinations or when other vicious actions are taken.

The U.S. Embassy, Havana, Cuba

The U.S. Embassy, Havana, Cuba

Canada has reported that “more than five, but fewer than ten” Canadian families have been injured so far, with twenty-one United States Civilians diagnosed with traumatic brain injuries—primarily affecting speech and memory—with others suffering hearing loss or damage.

Investigators are at a loss, no clear route of injury has been established.. Is this some sort of poison? Could there be a yet-unknown weapon to the USA and Cuban authorities being used on these embassies?

As the cause and culprits are unknown, the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Missions has not been violated, as investigators do not believe that Cuba themselves are assisting, attacking or failing to protect the diplomats to the best of their abilities.

Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, has ordered the departure of all non-emergency employees and their families, reducing the size of their diplomatic mission by about 60%. A full shutdown of the embassy has been considered, but for now the mission has been reduced in size and vulnerability. Visa’s will not be issued by the embassy, and the State Department urges American citizens to not travel to Cuba until this is resolved…

What could injure people, from a distance and in such a specific location—even inside the human skull?

Outside of science-fiction, or “wild conspiracy theory blogs” there aren’t many known weapons which could cause this sort of injury, with precision, at a distance…

The assaults are being described as “acoustic weapons” or “sonic attacks” by victims, and journalists covering them.

Multiple accounts describe the feelings of unease at extremely localised areas, such as the victims bedroom or only over their sleeping-area, when the victims wake or notice that they are under attack and move out of this zone, the sound or pain ceases.

Some media think they have caught a sample of the sound, listen here with caution!

How are people being injured?

LRAD:

Long Range Acoustic Device—a system capable of delivering painful levels of sound, to either deter people from attacking, assembling or asserting their rights to protest. LRAD can also deliver music, or other audio; useful for informing large crowds or in emergency notification situations…

LRAD aboard a US Navy Ship, with the operator wearing hearing protection.

LRAD aboard a US Navy Ship, with the operator wearing hearing protection.

This technology is unlikely to have been modified to suit the needs of whoever is attacking these diplomats; though whatever system is harming them may use similar methods to project sound waves, as many victims have reported hearing strange sounds and have suffered hearing damage along with traumatic brain injuries…

Active Denial System:

The Active Denial System is another “non lethal” weapon, this uses microwave technology to heat the outer layers of skin… With similar aims or goals as the LRAD, it was mostly designed as a defensive weapon to protect ships, diplomatic missions or military bases… It causes extreme pain when used and will deter people from approaching—as most cannot stand more than 5 seconds of exposure—but will usually not leave any permanent injury. This technology would not be suitable for causing brain damage, as people would notice as soon as it was switched on, and attempt to escape the pain. Whether something like this could be modified to penetrate the human skull without cooking the brain, causing cataracts or significant, fatal brain damage would be extremely hard to develop, probably impossible using the current technology as-is.

Old-Fashioned, accidental or environmental causes:

All the “hysteria” about high tech spy weapons may be unneeded, as there are plenty of ways to damage or poison a human being. Possibly accidental, the pipes in the embassy or the water supply could be contaminated, or perhaps there are some other toxins entering the staff via the paint, food supply or other means. Unlikely to cause this sort of brain injury, but not impossible; though by now the treating doctors would have found a common toxin or telltale symptom which would lead to a culprit being found.

It is extremely unlikely that these injuries are being caused by poisoning, intentional or not.

Sci-Fi Technology we are not aware of:

This is where we leave the realms of known science, and get into conspiracy theories or fiction… Many weapons have been imagined but as far as we know, nothing exists in the battlefield or arsenals of modern armies that could cause this sort of injury. That is not to say it is impossible, just that we do not know of any specific weapons system that is designed to injure certain lobes, speech centres or other specific parts of the human brain from a distance. Targeting alone would require an MRI or similar technology, and for the victim to lie perfectly still as they carried out the attack; both highly unlikely, and extremely expensive using current technology.

What kind of injuries are the survivors being diagnosed with?

Most victims have reported nausea, dizziness, audio hallucinations and noise.

Worryingly, some victims have traumatic brain injuries; especially in word-recall, other memory and verbal and concentration areas, or hearing loss and tinnitus-like symptoms. Doctors have not released any private information of course, but the general list of injuries point to a concerning set of symptoms, which definitely sound neurological in nature.

Who would benefit from these crimes?

Russian Embassy in Havana
By Nick De Marco - nickdemarcofoto.com [ CC BY 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Russian Embassy in Havana
By Nick De Marco - nickdemarcofoto.com [CC BY 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Russia has the technical capabilities, and the motive to attack United States diplomats wherever they may be. Their electronic weapons and warfare capabilities are fairly unknown, but we have some examples of their anti aircraft and ship weaponry…

Russian operatives have openly attacked American diplomats recently, relations have been on edge since the illegal annexation of Crimea by Russia; and their ongoing invasion of the Ukraine.

Russia has been experimenting with electronic warfare since the early 80’s, much of the hardware is designed to attack other machines, not human-beings. China, on the other hand, has produced some horrific hardware—one of the most notorious ones being their permanent-blinding laser device—designed to blind masses of troops or other large groups of people from a long distance…

The PHASR rifle—a non-lethal laser Dazzler weapon.

The PHASR rifle—a non-lethal laser Dazzler weapon.

This weapon was banned by the United Nations, yet there are allegations of the weapon being used still by the P.L.A., the Russian Army and North Korea, of course. While horrific, this weapon is not likely being used in Cuba…

The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (F.A.R.C) have ties to, or even elements hidden inside the Cuban government. While most of Cuba was enjoying the Cuban Thaw these elements had established ties with F.A.R.C, and would not appreciate the removal of financial and other material support for the group.

The culmination of years of talks resulted in this handshake between the President and Cuban President Raúl Castro during the Summit of the Americas in Panama City, Panama.

The culmination of years of talks resulted in this handshake between the President and Cuban President Raúl Castro during the Summit of the Americas in Panama City, Panama.

F.A.R.C has links to other State-Sponsors of Terrorism as their goals align; the Lebanon-based terrorist group Hezbollah is a prime example; as recently as 2011 an Italian newspaper stated that Hezbollah was planning a “secret base” in Havana… Hezbollah has been aggressively expanding into South America—when not tied up in Syria or acting as Iran’s other special forces—they have been involved or implicated in assassinations in Argentina, with these same elements in Cuba cozying up to the Venezuelan regime, too.

Hezbollah's Flag

Hezbollah's Flag

The “unholy alliance” of Iran, Hezbollah and F.A.R.C. May be a clue to who would have motives in a breakdown of USA-Cuba relations; the less diplomatic cooperation between these two powers, the easier for these clandestine groups to operate in the area.

It is highly unlikely for a terrorist organisation to have such high-tech weapons, and not use them for Mass Terrorism; on the other hand someone sympathetic to their aims may be providing a service for a common enemy…

Who loses out from these operations?

The United States, Cuba and Cuban-Americans…

A Soviet-era R12/SS4 Ballistic Missile
By Suvorow (Own work) [ CC BY-SA 3.0 ], via Wikimedia Commons

A Soviet-era R12/SS4 Ballistic Missile
By Suvorow (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 ], via Wikimedia Commons

Cubans have suffered since the 1950’s, due to their governments alliance with the Soviets. Escalating in 1962 to an almost disastrous crisis when the USSR placed R-12 Nuclear-Tipped missiles around the island nation.

The Jupiter IRBM.

The Jupiter IRBM.

Contingency plans were kept secret from the public—nuclear warheads in range of the USA would have caused quite a lot of panic—and the USA did not want to reveal how much they knew to the Soviets as John F. Kennedy decided the best way to proceed while securing peace for the USA first, Cuba, and the world.

Here’s a draft of Kennedy’s planned TV appearance in case the US Airforce had bombed the R-12 launchers, though nuclear options had been discussed. Revelations have surfaced that the Soviets had deployed approximately 100 nuclear weapons to Cuba, some for artillery launch, others for bombing and the large missiles with devastating potential power. These weapons were not under the control of the Soviet Leaders, and any commander could have ordered a detonation or fire…

Hundreds of millions of US, Soviet and Cuban lives were at risk; or potentially the entire human race.

Since the embargo the civilians have had to make-do with 1960’s era technology, if not smuggled in, everything must be repaired. Classic American Cars still drive on the streets of Cuba, it appears like a time-warp to the “Grease” era…

A pink Chevrolet, photo by MiltonPoint

A pink Chevrolet, photo by MiltonPoint

This belies the poverty of most of the civilians, who survive on an estimated $1 a day. The socialist policies of their government had helped people not starve to death, and many have excellent education and medical care too.

The Cuban-Thaw had brought a glimmer of hope to many in Cuba and their families in the United States, that normal relations would resume and the countries could benefit from their closeness, Cuba could enjoy a massive tourism boost and Cubans would be able to visit family or travel to the United States if they wished to.

An Edsel Pace, Havana 2014
By MiltonPoint - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0

An Edsel Pace, Havana 2014
By MiltonPoint - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0

Classic Car collectors across the world, especially in the United States would be salivating at the chance of exporting some of the rarer machines and restoring or upgrading them, and their owners in Cuba would be quickly finding out that they were in a “sellers market” if they were savvy or had the rarest examples of some classic European cars, though the most popular examples are of Chevrolets, Fords and even Studebaker’s…

By User DirkvdM on en.wikipedia - Photograph by Dirk van der Made CC BY 1.0

By User DirkvdM on en.wikipedia - Photograph by Dirk van der Made CC BY 1.0

There are few states that could have the technology to accomplish this sort of injury, and even fewer that would want to break US–Cuba relations…

the embassy of the republic of cuba, washington dc, wikimedia, By Difference engine (Own work) [ CC BY-SA 4.0], via Wikimedia Commons

the embassy of the republic of cuba, washington dc, wikimedia, By Difference engine (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0], via Wikimedia Commons

The few states that are having diplomatic spats with the USA are the most likely culprits, though it is an extremely vicious escalation from the usual “expel diplomats and seize assets” level of breakdown. Most concerning is if this is a pilot program for a new kind of weapon, or testing for new classes of weapons that injure the human brain yet leave no marks or obvious damage to a person.

It would make little sense for a new weapon to be used to attack diplomats of all people; though this may still be petty revenge or continuation of the active bullying that Russia has perpetrated upon many diplomats, journalists and their own people when they fall afoul of Vladimir Putin’s goals or financial aims.

Another world power that would likely have this sort of technology is China, they are fighting the USA over claims of territory in the South China Sea; though their aggressions have been much more direct, threatening planes, ships with radar-lock-ons and even seizing a submarine drone last December.

PLA Navy on the South China Sea
By AFP通信 [CC BY-SA 4.0], via Wikimedia Commons

PLA Navy on the South China Sea
By AFP通信 [CC BY-SA 4.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Cuba is extremely unlikely to be the perpetrator, they have nothing to gain and much to lose. It is a shame for them that this is occurring on their soil, but they are doing all they can to try to prevent it.

A perplexing problem that will be solved eventually, hopefully before more brains are permanently damaged.

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President Donald J. Trump delivers remarks on Cuba and participates in a signing on Cuba Policy Friday, June 16, 2017, at Manual Artime Theater in Miami, Florida.(Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead)

President Donald J. Trump delivers remarks on Cuba and participates in a signing on Cuba Policy Friday, June 16, 2017, at Manual Artime Theater in Miami, Florida.(Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead)