Havana Syndrome — CIA Report : “No Worldwide Campaign by Foreign Adversary”

“We assess it is unlikely that a foreign actor, including Russia, is conducting a sustained, worldwide campaign harming U.S. personnel with a weapon or mechanism.”

CIA Report (January 2022)

January 20 2022 —  According to a new CIA report, most cases have environmental or medical causes. Two dozen incidents remain unexplained. Follow us on Twitter: @INTEL_TODAY

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“It’s real. It’s affecting our officers. It’s affecting others around the community, in government, and we’re going to figure it out.”

CIA Deputy Director David Cohen

Annual Intelligence and National Security Summit (Sept. 14 2021)

The C.I.A. has concluded that most cases of Havana syndrome are unlikely to have been caused a foreign adversary.

“C.I.A. officials said there was agreement within the intelligence community about the finding that the majority of Havana syndrome incidents were not the work of an adversarial power conducting a sustained campaign around the globe.” [NYT]

According to their investigation, the majority of 1,000 reported cases can be attributed to a preexisting medical conditions or environmental or other factors.

“Of the cases that have been resolved, some had medical explanations, including previously undiagnosed conditions, while others were said to have had environmental causes, though C.I.A. officials did not offer examples.”

Two dozen incidents remain unexplained.

“In about two dozen cases, the agency cannot rule out foreign involvement, including many of the cases that originated at the U.S. Embassy in Havana beginning in 2016. Another group of cases is considered unresolved.” [NBC News]

Just an ‘Interim Report’

Across various intelligence agencies, confidence in the C.I.A. assessment range from low to high.

“U.S. officials stressed that the interim report was not a final conclusion of the broader Biden administration or the full intelligence community. The White House National Security Council has convened a task force involving outside medical and scientific experts that is also examining Havana Syndrome and is expected to release some findings in the near future, officials said. The Defense Department, the FBI and the State Department are all still working to investigate the origins of the syndrome and how to mitigate it, the officials said.

Instead, the interim CIA report is focused narrowly on the number of incidents that are believed to be potentially attributable to a foreign actor, officials said.” [NBC News]

An expert panel has been looking at classified information about the incidents. The panel, which has provided its findings to the government but is still finishing its report, explored technologies that could result, at least theoretically, in the symptoms being reported.

Quick analysis

The conclusion of the CIA report is hardly surprising.

In a recent post, I told you that it was very likely that Havana attacks — if they ever happened — were limited to a small number of high value targets.

RELATED POST : Two Years Ago — Havana Syndrome : Pesticide may have caused diplomats’ illness. Really? [Comments from Dr James Giordano] [UPDATE : Beside Microwave, what else could it be? Maybe, Hyponatremia.]

The media reports do not offer a single example of what preexisting medical conditions or environmental factors may have caused the symptoms reported by so many U.S. officials.

“I believe that the experts working for the US Intelligence Community are looking carefully at the possibility that some of U.S. officials have confused hyponatremia for Havana syndrome.”

Intel Today (September 25 2021)

REFERENCES

CIA finds no ‘worldwide campaign’ by any foreign power behind mysterious Havana syndrome — Washington Post (January 20 2022)

Most ‘Havana Syndrome’ Cases Unlikely Caused by Foreign Power, C.I.A. Says — NYT (January 20 2022)

CIA says ‘Havana Syndrome’ not result of sustained campaign by hostile power — NBC (January 20 2022)

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Havana Syndrome — CIA Report: “No Worldwide Campaign by Foreign Adversary”

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