Intel community bats down main theory behind ‘Havana Syndrome’ incidents

“We can not tie a international adversary to any incident,” stated one of many U.S. intelligence officers, who, like the opposite, was granted anonymity to talk extra freely in regards to the evaluation.

Investigators studied greater than 1,500 reviews from throughout the U.S. authorities that detailed signs starting from complications to dizziness, the intelligence officers stated.

“There is no such thing as a one clarification for any of this,” the second U.S. intelligence official stated. “We imagine that what these officers are reporting is actual.”


The officers stated most businesses concerned within the evaluation decided it was “not possible” {that a} international adversary was concerned. Of the seven businesses, two had moderate-to-high confidence in that assertion, three had average confidence, and two stated it’s “unlikely” an adversary was concerned however did so with low confidence, the officers stated. The officers didn’t present the names of these businesses.

The evaluation is predicated not simply on an absence of proof but in addition current proof that really “factors towards” a international actor being concerned, the second official stated.

The evaluation additionally discovered that no international adversary has a weapon or assortment gadget that’s inflicting the incidents. Two businesses stated that they had excessive confidence in that dedication, three had average confidence, and two had low confidence as a result of they imagine radio-frequency power is a “believable trigger.”

“The intelligence community evaluation launched in the present day by ODNI displays greater than two years of rigorous, painstaking assortment, investigative work, and evaluation by IC businesses together with CIA,” CIA Director Invoice Burns stated in an announcement. “We utilized the company’s perfect operational, analytic, and technical tradecraft to what is among the largest and most intensive investigations within the company’s historical past.”

Preliminary reviews in regards to the mysterious syndrome first emerged in 2016 amongst U.S. and Canadian diplomatic employees in Havana, Cuba. The diplomats complained of listening to piercing sounds coming from one path and acute nausea and vertigo. Within the years that adopted, tons of of extra U.S. authorities employees reported signs that aligned with these preliminary well being reviews.

The buildup of reporting prompted lawmakers and numerous businesses all through the U.S. authorities to analyze potential causes for the unexplained well being incidents.

The intelligence evaluation briefed to reporters Wednesday contradicts earlier findings from numerous authorities teams.

In 2020, the Nationwide Academies of Sciences Engineering and Drugs stated it discovered that the most probable cause of the syndrome was “directed, pulsed-radio frequency power.” A yr later, administration officers instructed Congress they had been more and more frightened in regards to the reporting and that there was an opportunity a international adversary — probably Russia — was utilizing a weapon to focus on Individuals. And a panel of specialists put collectively by the intelligence community additionally discovered that an external energy source might have brought on the signs and {that a} international energy might have been concerned.

When the reviews initially emerged, intelligence officers stated medical research instructed that the incidents represented a brand new medical syndrome that appeared much like a traumatic mind harm. Now, they stated, that medical pondering has advanced and the intelligence community discovered that the signs didn’t fall into any discernible patterns.

The 2 intelligence officers stated the seven businesses checked out reviews spanning 96 nations. A few of the reviews passed off on totally different continents on the identical day.

When the intelligence community initially launched its investigation two years in the past, analysts approached the probe with the idea {that a} international actor was focusing on Individuals deliberately with moveable expertise. However as they examined the info extra intently, these assumptions didn’t maintain, the officers stated.

Analysts and officers contacted different governments to grasp the extent to which their workers had been experiencing comparable signs. These governments didn’t point out that that they had acquired an “upswell” in these sorts of reviews.


“I need to be completely clear: These findings don’t name into query the experiences and actual well being points that U.S. authorities personnel and their members of the family — together with CIA’s personal officers — have reported whereas serving our nation,” Burns stated.

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