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CIA Confirms That Havana Syndrome Is Probably Not Caused by Foreign Adversaries

The illness that mainly effects U.S intelligence personnel might just have nothing to do with U.S intelligence after all

Credit: Shuttershock

The strange medical phenomenon mostly seemed to affect U.S. government personnel, causing speculation on its source—until now.  

It all started in 2016 when several diplomats at the US Embassy in Havana fell ill with a series of similar strange symptoms. These guys weren’t just getting severe colds, either; the malady, named Havana Syndrome is neurological. Symptoms include severe headaches, cognitive impairment, hearing loss, fatigue, vertigo, and loss of motor control among other things. Victims reported waves of pressure in their heads and strange overpowering sounds of swarming cicadas.

This mini-documentary from 2017 explores the early mystery of the illness.

The cluster of symptoms differs from person to person, but the most common reports came from US intelligence personnel. Naturally, if it’s 2016 and U.S intelligence officers (as well as Canadians) are experiencing weird neurological symptoms in a foreign embassy, U.S intelligence will do what they do best and call foreign bioweapon.

See, Havana Syndrome “attacks” (as dubbed by top officials) reportedly had no obvious cause, with many doctors citing the syndrome as psychosomatic, or imagined, symptoms. Though, other doctors disagree, with some of the symptoms lasting permanently (like the hearing loss). US Intelligence insisted for a long time that the symptoms could have been from a foreign entity, with geopolitical anxieties to blame.

Here, a CIA operative shares his experience with Havana Syndrome, as well as his anxieties about possible “attacks” from Russian intelligence. 

Havana Syndrome wasn’t reserved to its namesake, however. In 2018, a collection of cases occurred in China, for example, once again impacting government officials. More and more cases appeared across the globe with similar effects and similar targets, raising extreme anxieties about what could be causing the illness.

The current U.S administration has funneled a lot of effort to get to the bottom of the mystery, with reported cases and data pooling into a conspiracy board of “is this some sort of weapon? Or is it something else?”

Congress even passed a protections act for healthcare coverage to those with Havana Syndrome, which makes the later findings of the official report even stranger. Last week, the CIA released an interim on its conclusions.

The interim reported that there was a considerable amount of cases that they could explain away with various other causes. Other illnesses or psychosomatic symptoms that accompanied the wave of Havana Syndrome cases were narrowed out, leaving only the most flagrant examples to study. However, they’ve yet to breach an explanation for said cases, only managing to rule out the definitive possibility that this was caused by a foreign adversary.

Many wonder whether the cause has to do with increasingly advanced military technology, rather than something purposeful. 

While the mystery of Havana Syndrome hasn’t reached its conclusion yet, the interim calmed a lot of the anxieties of possible warfare or terrorism in the form of neurological illness. With the world map already seeming unstable, many are likely relieved at this dissolving storm on the horizon.

However, many are skeptical about the entire interim, wondering whether the report had some other agenda. Many claim that the CIA’s abrupt conclusion without a conclusion might mean more than the report concludes. People from all sides of the political spectrum have wondered why the CIA would pause on an investigation that hasn’t really gotten to the bottom of anything.

For now, we can only wait and see what else comes out next about the strange illness.

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