All eyes on Russia, as Havana syndrome story unfolds

Russia, Havana syndrome

Moscow: Much is being talked about the Havana Syndrome. Investigators say Russia is behind the mysterious illness of American officials. Some recent reports have come out after which it is being claimed that the Russian intelligence agency mysteriously infected the health of American officials.

A leading US military investigator has told 60 Minutes that he believes US officials are being attacked by Russia. US officials injured in Vietnam in a Havana Syndrome-style attack ahead of Vice President Kamala Harris’s 2021 visit to Hanoi. Now new evidence suggests that Russia may have been involved – and that it may have been the Vietnamese who were given the technology that could have caused the injuries.

At the time, the U.S. Embassy in Hanoi announced that a possible “unusual health phenomenon, the federal government’s term for the so-called Havana Syndrome attacks, was slowing Harris’s arrival in Vietnam. 60 Minutes has learned that Harris’ country Eleven people were reported killed in separate incidents before entering: two people who were US Embassy officials in Hanoi, and nine people who were part of a Defense Department advance team preparing for Harris’s visit.

While at least some injured American personnel were flown out of the country, Harris was unharmed and continued her journey to Hanoi after a three-hour delay in Singapore.

Symptoms of Havana syndrome often include nausea, dizziness, migraines, and vision and hearing problems that may persist for a long time. Although US officials cannot confirm what caused it, experts 60 Minutes spoke with believe the incidents involve targeted sonic or microwave attacks. ’60 Minutes’ has been investigating these attacks for more than five years.

For the latest report, which aired this week, producers Michael Ray and Oriana Zille de Granados teamed up with Christo Grozev, an investigative journalist who currently leads investigative work for The Insider. Grozev is best known for leading the investigation into the poisoning of late Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny.

As 60 Minutes investigated the Hanoi incident, one source suggested that the Vietnamese themselves had been given some type of technology that could have caused a “Havana Syndrome” attack. According to the source, the Vietnamese may have been asked to use technology to listen in on Americans before Harris’s visit – but they may not have known that the technology could harm the people they were using it on. .

Who was Vitaly Kovalev?

Kristo Grozaev, an investigative journalist for The Insider, said that Kovalev used to be a Russian military electrical engineer with a top secret security clearance. Eventually he left his career in intelligence and became a chef in America. Kovalev was captured and pleaded guilty to eluding police and reckless driving. He was later sentenced to 30 months behind bars, but eventually returned to Russia. Officials in Russia claimed he died shortly after on the front lines of the country’s war with Ukraine. Grozev claimed that he was able to obtain an accounting document linked to a top-secret Russian intelligence unit called 29155. The document talked about a bonus payment for an officer who worked on a project involving “the potential capabilities of non-lethal acoustic weapons.” ,

Grozev found a document in his research that indicated this theory may be correct. Five months before Harris’ trip to Hanoi, an email was sent to Russia’s Security Council, the body of top Russian officials that heads the country’s defense and security agencies. According to Grozev, a document within the emails shows that Russian intelligence lobbied President Vladimir Putin and received permission from him to provide special technology to Vietnamese security services. The list of recommended technologies to be shared included “LRAD acoustic emitters” and “short-wave devices to scan the human body”.

The mystery of Havana Syndrome continues as a lead military investigator says the bar for evidence was set impossibly high. LRAD, meaning “long range acoustic device”, is a military-grade sonic weapon that releases a targeted beam of sound at extremely high volumes. An LRAD device was used to thwart a pirate attack on a cruise ship in 2005, and since then, the U.S. military has used the devices to send warnings to areas, such as away from army base perimeters. To caution people. But when left at the highest volume, some LRAD systems can produce a sound pressure level of 162 decibels. The human pain threshold is about 130 decibels. Grozev said, based on his research, that he suspects Russia is sending this type of weapons technology to foreign governments, which could be used in Havana syndrome attacks.

What is Havana Syndrome?

According to Dotcom, “Havana Syndrome” is a condition that some government officials and their family members in US embassies in various countries have experienced since 2016. Symptoms include headaches, sleeplessness, and other symptoms similar to neurological conditions. While some people experience the syndrome briefly, others have long-term symptoms. The causes of Havana syndrome remain unknown. The latest revelations come days after some studies from the National Institutes of Health claimed that although various US government employees had experienced these symptoms, there was no consistent evidence of brain injury. The report said the symptoms were, in fact, likely caused by “pre-existing conditions, underlying diseases, and environmental factors” as well as some other factors.

The National Institutes of Health said their research team used advanced imaging techniques and thorough clinical evaluation, but found “no significant evidence of MRI-detectable brain injury” among a group of federal employees, nor “Differences” were found in most clinical measures compared to controls. It says, “These events, including headache, dizziness, cognitive dysfunction, and other symptoms after hearing the noise and feeling pressure on the head, have been described in the news media as “Havana Syndrome” because of the US government personnel stationed in Havana. “The personnel were the first to report the incidents.”


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