Havana Syndrome | Take the invisible weapon by the horns

When a group of diplomats and Government of Canada employees suffering from a mysterious illness nicknamed “Havana Syndrome” decided to summon up their courage in the fall of 2021 to tell me about their setbacks , they all hoped that the Canadian government would finally listen to them.

Deployed to the Cuban capital between 2017 and 2021, they accurately described the moment they heard a shrill metallic noise that was followed by a set of debilitating symptoms including loss of balance, memory lapses, tinnitus and all a panoply of neurological ailments. Everyone had to struggle to find adequate medical care for themselves and their family members who were also affected. All felt abandoned by their employer, Global Affairs Canada1.

If they wanted to be better supported by the government, those who testified wanted even more to be taken seriously, to shed light on what happened to them. On the source of evil.

They are still waiting.

These testimonies came back to mind this week while the investigative program 60 Minutes of the American channel CBS, in concert with the German magazine Der Spiegel and the Russian publication The Insider, revealed new information on the “Havana syndrome”.

According to the information collected and reported by my colleague Vincent Larouche in our pages on Tuesday2, a special unit of the Russian Military Intelligence Service, the GRU, is said to have used a “directed energy” weapon against dozens of American targets in Cuba, but also in Germany, Washington, Austria, Australia, Georgia, China and Russia. These individuals are experiencing the same symptoms as Canadian employees at the Havana embassy.

Investigative journalists notably found a document showing that a Russian agent, belonging to unit 29155 of the GRU, received a bonus for having tested “the potential capabilities of non-lethal acoustic weapons”. This same unit would also be responsible for the poisonings of a former Russian spy, Sergei Skripal, and of Kremlin opponent Alexeï Navalny, who died in prison last winter.

This information does not come out of nowhere. As of 2020, experts at the American Academy of Sciences believe it is plausible that “directed radio wave energies” are the cause of the mysterious syndrome. However, other competing theories, favoring either the possibility of collective hysteria or that of brain damage caused by neurotoxins linked to pesticides, have also been put forward. These rival hypotheses, but all imperfect, ended up creating fog around the question.

If the United States has redoubled its efforts since Joe Biden came to power to lift the veil on the Havana syndrome – with limited success – the Canadian government seems mired in its inaction and silence. . We have been waiting for the results of an investigation by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police for seven years! The sick diplomats, exasperated, decided to take their employer to court.

In 2022, following in the footsteps of the American Secretary of State, Global Affairs Canada asked its staff to monitor the appearance of symptoms similar to Havana syndrome, but justified itself by saying it was showing a ” excess of caution.”

These days, despite the requests from journalists which are piling up following the information revealed by 60 Minutes and its collaborators, the same ministry does not respond.

This paralysis is scary. If it is established that Russia has a new weapon that can directly attack the brains of its victims to neutralize them – as the latest investigations suggest – the situation is serious. Very serious.

After diplomats and intelligence agents, heads of state, politicians, generals, political opponents and journalists could also be targeted.

“If the history of 60 Minutes is true, the diplomats and employees who are affected are injured as a result of an act of war. Canadian authorities do not seem to want to face this possibility,” Paul Miller, the lawyer who represents the 18 Global Affairs Canada employees who are part of the legal proceedings against the government, told me Tuesday.

I said it three years ago and I say it again today: Canada must move heaven and earth to shed light on this matter. And not just while waiting for the United States or other foreign governments to deign to share the fruit of their investigations.

Within the Trudeau government, someone must stand up and take charge of this issue. Our collective security may depend on it. Our representatives in Cuba – who have seen their health, their careers and their family balance taken hostage – have been saying this for too long.

1. Read the 2021 testimonies of diplomats and government employees affected by Havana Syndrome

1. Read other 2021 stories from diplomats and government employees affected by Havana Syndrome

2. Read the article about the new revelations

reference: www.lapresse.ca

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