US diplomats suffer brain injuries after sonic attacks in Cuba

Some US and Canadian diplomats working in Havana have been diagnosed with traumatic brain injury with likely damage to the central nervous system after suspected attacks directed at their homes by a sonic weapon.

A number of diplomats have ended their assignments in Cuba early because of the attacks that began in mid-November 2016 and stopped this spring, CNN reported. According to CBS News, the diplomats suffer from symptoms ranging from hearing loss and nausea to headaches and balance disorders.

It is believed a sophisticated sonic weapon that operated outside the range of human audible sound was deployed either inside or outside the residences of US diplomats in Havana, three US officials told CNN. The residences were provided by the Cuban government.

It is possible that the device generated infrasound, which is below the range of human hearing. It travels great distances and can easily penetrate most buildings. Low frequency infrasound can affect the vestibular system, while high powered infrasound can cause result in nausea and pressure in the chest.

Meanwhile, high frequency ultrasound can damage the blood vessels in the ear canal. However, high frequency sound dissipates quickly over distance. Therefore, the device has to be close enough to in order to cause damage.

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