It sounds like a tinfoil-hat idea from science fiction – but scientists now believe US diplomats could have been targeted with mysterious microwave ray guns.
Three dozen American diplomats have fallen ill in Cuba and China – reporting intense high-pitched sounds in their rooms, and symptoms including nausea, headaches and tiredness.
Initial scientific reports published earlier this year did not mention microwave weapons as a possible cause – but scientists are increasingly convinced such weapons may have been used.
Lead author Douglas Smith, the director of the Center for Brain Injury and Repair at the University of Pennsylvania tld the New York Times that experts now believe the diplomats may have suffered brain injury caused by such weapons.
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Smith said, ‘Everybody was relatively sceptical at first and everyone now agrees there’s something there.’
Smith said microwave weapons were now a ‘main suspect’ but that the team were also researching whether ultrasonic or infrasonic weapons were used.
Smith said, ‘It’s almost like a concussion, but without a concussion — meaning that they look like individuals who have persistent concussion symptoms but have no history of head impact.’
The American government has yet to officially point to the use of such weapons – or indicate who might have carried out the attacks.
America withdrew embassy staff after the incidents.
Both America and the Soviet Union researched the use of such weapons.
In the Seventies, American intelligence warned of the potential of Soviet-designed weapons for ‘disrupting the behavior patterns of military or diplomatic personnel’.