Author Topic: All Things Cuba (Castro, politics, etc.)  (Read 105964 times)

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jollyjacktar

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Re: All Things Cuba (Castro, politics, etc.)
« Reply #300 on: November 29, 2016, 16:37:23 »
Waste not, want not.   :nod:

Offline Canuck_Jock

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Re: All Things Cuba (Castro, politics, etc.)
« Reply #301 on: November 29, 2016, 16:42:29 »
CBC is reporting that the GG will attend a memorial service for Castro and that the PM shall not be attending.  (First smart thing he's done all week, maybe he can learn from his mistakes.)

Sending the Governor General to the funeral? FFS, send a buckshee Liberal politician, don't send the GG. Castro was the former head of state of a repressive regime, we should only send token representation.

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Re: All Things Cuba (Castro, politics, etc.)
« Reply #302 on: November 29, 2016, 16:49:02 »
It's probably considered a diplomatic form of reciprocity. After all, Castro came to Trudeau's funeral.
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Re: All Things Cuba (Castro, politics, etc.)
« Reply #303 on: November 29, 2016, 16:53:52 »
It's probably considered a diplomatic form of reciprocity. After all, Castro came to Trudeau's funeral.

And an Honourary PallBearer to PET.
I know that I’m not perfect and that I don’t claim to be, so before you point your fingers make sure your hands are clean.

Offline Retired AF Guy

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Re: All Things Cuba (Castro, politics, etc.)
« Reply #304 on: November 29, 2016, 17:12:30 »
Micheal Totten is always good reading

Should send the article to the Premier of Quebec and the leader of the Opposition who seem to think Castro and Che were the greatest things since sliced bread.
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Re: All Things Cuba (Castro, politics, etc.)
« Reply #305 on: November 29, 2016, 17:58:27 »
And an Honourary PallBearer to PET.

Perhaps he came up here to console his son.  :rofl:
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Offline the 48th regulator

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Re: All Things Cuba (Castro, politics, etc.)
« Reply #306 on: November 29, 2016, 18:06:14 »
Perhaps he came up here to console his son.  :rofl:

 :threat:

 :rofl:

I know that I’m not perfect and that I don’t claim to be, so before you point your fingers make sure your hands are clean.

Offline the 48th regulator

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Re: All Things Cuba (Castro, politics, etc.)
« Reply #307 on: November 29, 2016, 18:07:52 »
I need help.

I saw a hillarious poitical Cartoon.  It has Justin Trudeau in a bedroom with a huge Castro painting on the wall. JT lying on the bed like a teenager, talking on the phone with a Castro teddy.  I love it, but can't find it!

dileas

tess
 
I know that I’m not perfect and that I don’t claim to be, so before you point your fingers make sure your hands are clean.

Offline George Wallace

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Re: All Things Cuba (Castro, politics, etc.)
« Reply #308 on: November 29, 2016, 18:16:22 »
I need help.

I saw a hillarious poitical Cartoon.  It has Justin Trudeau in a bedroom with a huge Castro painting on the wall. JT lying on the bed like a teenager, talking on the phone with a Castro teddy.  I love it, but can't find it!

dileas

tess

It was in the Halifax Chronicle Herald:



Posted in The MEGA Political Cartoon Thread thread of Radio Chatter: http://army.ca/forums/index.php/topic,123289.msg1465990.html#msg1465990
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Offline the 48th regulator

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Re: All Things Cuba (Castro, politics, etc.)
« Reply #309 on: November 29, 2016, 18:18:46 »
Booom,

Thank you George!!!

I know, I know. I am a Truead/Lib, but the cartoons out there like this one make me laugh, they are brilliant!!
I know that I’m not perfect and that I don’t claim to be, so before you point your fingers make sure your hands are clean.

Offline mariomike

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Re: All Things Cuba (Castro, politics, etc.)
« Reply #310 on: December 17, 2016, 15:21:51 »
For anyone interested in statistics,

Fidel Castro slept with 35,000 women and smoked his first cigar aged 14
http://www.gq-magazine.co.uk/article/fidel-castro-quotes


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Re: All Things Cuba (Castro, politics, etc.)
« Reply #311 on: December 17, 2016, 15:51:45 »
I'll accept the cigar at age 14, but at one a day, Castro would have to have started shortly after he lost his umbilical cord to reach that number. (35,000 divided by 365.25 days = 95.8 years) He may have been into twosomes and threesomes and moresomes, but it seems a little much.

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Re: All Things Cuba (Castro, politics, etc.)
« Reply #312 on: December 17, 2016, 15:56:55 »
“He slept with at least two women a day for more than four decades – one for lunch and one for supper. Sometimes he even ordered one for breakfast,” an ex-Castro official named “Ramon” tells filmmaker Ian Halperin. “I don’t think he would have stayed on as long as he did if not for all the incredible women he had access to as president.” Castro’s security would comb Havana beaches each day recruiting the hottest babes.

I wonder why he didn't shave off that awful beard?

« Last Edit: December 17, 2016, 16:03:34 by mariomike »

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Re: All Things Cuba (Castro, politics, etc.)
« Reply #313 on: December 17, 2016, 19:12:07 »
Stunning resemblance.

Did Margaret ever hang out on Havana beaches...?

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Re: All Things Cuba (Castro, politics, etc.)
« Reply #314 on: December 17, 2016, 19:46:29 »
Stunning resemblance.

Did Margaret ever hang out on Havana beaches...?
She was one among many...Viva Justin.  Viva fundraising.  Viva sunny ways [Xp

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Re: All Things Cuba (Castro, politics, etc.)
« Reply #315 on: December 17, 2016, 20:11:10 »
Thought you guys would like it. Enjoy!  :)

Offline Old Sweat

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Re: All Things Cuba (Castro, politics, etc.)
« Reply #316 on: December 17, 2016, 21:32:20 »
Neat theory, but the Trudeaus first visited Cuba in 1976, when Justin was a little kid. Now we could turn the birthers loose, but come on.

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Re: All Things Cuba (Castro, politics, etc.)
« Reply #317 on: December 17, 2016, 21:52:19 »
« Last Edit: December 17, 2016, 21:55:56 by mariomike »

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Re: All Things Cuba (Castro, politics, etc.)
« Reply #318 on: December 17, 2016, 21:57:03 »
Neat theory, but the Trudeaus first visited Cuba in 1976, when Justin was a little kid. Now we could turn the birthers loose, but come on.
Apparently, Margaret got around... just sayin'  ;D

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Re: All Things Cuba (Castro, politics, etc.)
« Reply #319 on: December 17, 2016, 22:16:38 »
 :)

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Re: All Things Cuba (Castro, politics, etc.)
« Reply #320 on: August 11, 2017, 06:52:14 »
A Canadian angle here ...
Quote
Canadians in Cuba were also treated for hearing loss, Ottawa says amid U.S. probe of possible attack
Confirmation of health issue comes day after U.S. says diplomats in Havana targeted by sonic weapon
CBC News Posted: Aug 10, 2017 1:15 PM ET Last Updated: Aug 10, 2017 4:46 PM ET


Global Affairs Canada has confirmed at least one Canadian diplomat in Cuba has been treated in hospital after suffering headaches and hearing loss.

The information comes a day after the U.S. government said it believed some of its diplomats in Havana had been targeted with a covert sonic device that left them with severe hearing loss.

The Canadian diplomat's family members were also affected and treated.

"We are aware of unusual symptoms affecting Canadian and U.S. diplomatic personnel and their families in Havana. The government is actively working — including with U.S. and Cuban authorities — to ascertain the cause," said Brianne Maxwell, a Global Affairs Canada spokesperson.

"At this time, we do not have any reason to believe Canadian tourists and other visitors could be affected," Maxwell added.

Global Affairs did not identify the diplomat or say when the hospitalization took place.

An investigation is focused on identifying the technology used as well as who was using it.

The Associated Press reported Wednesday that a months-long U.S. investigation had determined its diplomats had been attacked by a device that operates outside the range of normal audible sound, and used outside or inside the diplomats' residences ...
More @ link
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Re: All Things Cuba (Castro, politics, etc.)
« Reply #321 on: September 29, 2017, 15:04:03 »
Hmmm - highlights mine ...
Quote
U.S. to slash embassy staff in Cuba, warns travelers of hotel attacks
September 29, 2017, Carol Morello, Washington Post (via matthewaid.com)

The United States is yanking more than half its diplomatic personnel from its embassy in Havana and warning Americans not to visit Cuba, saying it is for their own safety after a string of mysterious injuries harmed at least 21 Americans stationed there.

Senior State Department officials said embassy employees have been “targeted” for “specific attacks,” a significant change from previous characterizations of what happened as simply “incidents.”

Some of the diplomats were injured in at least one hotel in the Cuban capital, the Capri near the embassy. Employees temporarily deployed to the mission were staying there. The officials said they know of no other guests or hotel employees who were affected, but concern that others might be hurt prompted them to issue a broader warning advising against travel to Cuba.

“We have no reports that private U.S. citizens have been affected, but the attacks are known to have occurred in U.S. diplomatic residences and hotels frequented by U.S. citizens,” said Secretary of State Rex Tillerson in a statement. “The Department does not have definitive answers on the cause or source of the attacks and is unable to recommend a means to mitigate exposure.”

The withdrawal order applies to all nonessential staff and their families. Only “emergency personnel” will stay. The skeletal staff is being kept to assist U.S. citizens in Cuba who have pressing issues, but more routine diplomatic and consular functions will likely be slowed.

The diplomatic drawdown means that no visas will be processed at the embassy because there will not be enough people to do the work.

In addition, only U.S. government officials involved with the ongoing investigation or who need to travel there for national security or critical embassy operations will be allowed to travel to Cuba, the officials said. No U.S. delegations will visit Cuba for bilateral meetings, although they may meet in the United States.

“The reduction in diplomatic presence was made to ensure the safety of our personnel,” said one official. “We maintain diplomatic relations with Cuba, and our work in Cuba will be guided by national security and foreign policy goals of the United States.”

The State Department has acknowledged that at least 21 Americans connected to the embassy have been hurt in the attacks, the most recent of which occurred in August. No Cuban employees of the embassy have complained of any symptoms, only American diplomats.*

Among the health symptoms are hearing loss, dizziness, tinnitus, balance problems, visual difficulties, headaches, fatigue, cognitive issues and sleeping difficulties.

Nearly 10 months after the first complaints surfaced, neither U.S. nor Cuban investigators are any closer to identifying what is causing the injuries, or who is responsible. Investigators are looking into the possibility that they were subjected to some sort of “sonic attack,” among other theories, though it is not clear why American diplomats and a handful of Canadian envoys would be the only ones to complain of symptoms.

Cuba has denied having anything to do with the injuries. Among the possibilities being explored is that agents acting on behalf of a third country may be responsible ...
Meanwhile, from the State Dep't info-machine:
Quote
Actions Taken in Response to Attacks on U.S. Government Personnel in Cuba
Remarks, Rex W. Tillerson, Secretary of State, Washington, DC, September 29, 2017

Over the past several months, 21 U.S. Embassy employees have suffered a variety of injuries from attacks of an unknown nature. The affected individuals have exhibited a range of physical symptoms, including ear complaints, hearing loss, dizziness, headache, fatigue, cognitive issues, and difficulty sleeping. Investigators have been unable to determine who is responsible or what is causing these attacks.

On September 29, the Department ordered the departure of non-emergency personnel assigned to the U.S. Embassy in Havana, as well as all family members. Until the Government of Cuba can ensure the safety of our diplomats in Cuba, our Embassy will be reduced to emergency personnel in order to minimize the number of diplomats at risk of exposure to harm.

In conjunction with the ordered departure of our diplomatic personnel, the Department has issued a Travel Warning advising U.S. citizens to avoid travel to Cuba and informing them of our decision to draw down our diplomatic staff. We have no reports that private U.S. citizens have been affected, but the attacks are known to have occurred in U.S. diplomatic residences and hotels frequented by U.S. citizens. The Department does not have definitive answers on the cause or source of the attacks and is unable to recommend a means to mitigate exposure.

The decision to reduce our diplomatic presence in Havana was made to ensure the safety of our personnel. We maintain diplomatic relations with Cuba, and our work in Cuba continues to be guided by the national security and foreign policy interests of the United States. Cuba has told us it will continue to investigate these attacks and we will continue to cooperate with them in this effort.

The health, safety, and well-being of our Embassy community is our greatest concern. We will continue to aggressively investigate these attacks until the matter is resolved.
* - Realizing, of course, that "they didn't complain" may not be the same as "they had no symptoms"
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Offline Colin P

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Re: All Things Cuba (Castro, politics, etc.)
« Reply #322 on: October 02, 2017, 14:16:28 »
Saw a news article that most of the staff suffering from the attacks where the spies, Intelligence officers and likely spy handlers.

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Re: All Things Cuba (Castro, politics, etc.)
« Reply #323 on: October 28, 2017, 18:18:19 »
Interesting article on whether the "sonic" attack actually took place:

Quote
THE “SONIC ATTACK” ON U.S. DIPLOMATS IN CUBA: Why the State Department’s Claims Don’t Add Up
BY ROBERT E. BARTHOLOMEW

…an extraordinary claim requires extraordinary proof.
—Marcello Truzzi1

Even though sound is measurable, we tend to experience it as spectral, as something beyond our rational understanding. It is thus the perfect stand-in for a Cold War-style cunning enemy, who is surely out there, doing something, even though we can never seem to pin him down.
—Lisa Dierch & Ben Tausig2

It’s the stuff of spy novels and science fiction films. On October 13, 2017 the Associated Press released an eerie recording of a mysterious sound that was said to have been part of a “sonic attack” on American diplomats in Cuba.3 In August, State Department officials reported that several personnel at the Havana Embassy had been sickened by an unidentified acoustical weapon. The number of those affected in the sporadic, ongoing attacks is now at least two dozen. Several Canadian diplomats have reported similar health complaints. Symptoms include headaches, dizziness, nausea, fatigue, difficulty concentrating and remembering, insomnia, tinnitus, confusion, vertigo, hearing loss and “mild brain trauma.” Conspiracy theories abound with talk of secret military weapons from a foreign power or rogue agents, possibly Russian. But delve deeper, and the government’s claims begin to unravel.

For starters, there is no concrete evidence of an attack. Experts agree that what is being reported is not consistent with how sonic weaponry works. A leading figure in the field of psychoacoustics, former MIT researcher Joseph Pompei, is adamant that the State Department’s claims violate the laws of physics. “Brain damage and concussions, it’s not possible,” he said, noting that to produce such an effect “Somebody would have to submerge their head into a pool lined with very powerful ultrasound transducers.”4 German physicist and acoustics specialist Jürgen Altmann of Technology University Dortmund, concurs: “I know of no acoustic effect that can cause concussion symptoms. Sound going through the air cannot shake your head.”5 Former Brown University neuroscientist Seth Horowitz also views the claims as fanciful: “There isn’t an acoustic phenomenon in the world that would cause those type of symptoms.”6 He notes that while infrasonic sound waves can cause nausea, they would have no effect on human hearing as “there are no acoustic devices that can cause sudden onset hearing loss that the people involved could not hear.”7 Former CIA officer Fulton Armstrong agrees: “No one has a device that could do this” as “no such device exists.”8

The range of human hearing is between 20 and 20,000 hertz. Sounds below this level—infrasound, have proved a challenge to weaponize due to the difficulty in focusing the wavelengths. The central effect appears to be irritation. Sounds above this range—ultrasound, are an equally poor candidate for the symptoms because the waves dissipate rapidly as they travel. Even if they reached a building in an effort to target people inside, most of the wave would bounce off walls before harmlessly reaching their target.

Since Weapons?

The use of sound as a weapon can be traced back to biblical times. The Book of Joshua 6:1–27, describes the Battle of Jericho, during which the walls of Jericho reportedly collapsed after an army of Israelites marched around the structure blowing trumpets. While this story has never been verified and is almost certainly mythical, it speaks to the age-old human fascination with the potential destructive power of sound. The research on the military use of acoustical weapons, is clear. Despite an abundance of conspiracy theories about secret sonic devices capable of “frying” human organs or triggering insanity, the scientific literature is clear. The most comprehensive study of sonic weapons to date, was conducted by Drs. James Jauchem and Michael Cook of the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory in San Antonio, Texas. They state that based on the laws of physics, “it seems unlikely that high-intensity acoustic energy in the audible, infrasonic, or low-frequency range can provide a device suitable for use as a nonlethal weapon.”21 Furthermore, even if such a weapon were developed, it could not possibly cause the symptoms that are being reported in Cuba.

Sonic weapons may work for James Bond, but they are impractical in the real world, with one major exception: blasting loud noises. On October 12, 2000, a small boat laden with explosives approached the USS Cole and exploded, blowing a hole in the vessel and killing 17 American sailors. Since this incident, the Navy has developed an “acoustical cannon” that works by generating extreme noise capable of causing deafness and headaches. Such weapons are not exactly covert. Research on the use of sonic weapons has tailed off in recent years as it is widely viewed as a waste of research funds and a dead end. Despite this, there is no lack of grandiose claims and conspiracy theories about the use of secret acoustic devices.

Could someone have developed a hand-held weapon that could focus a wave of energy on a victim with pinpoint accuracy? This is Buck Rogers-style science fiction according to Timothy Leighton, professor of Ultrasonics and Acoustics at Southampton University in the United Kingdom: “If you’re talking about a ray-gun rifle knocking out someone with ultrasound…that’s not going to happen.”9 New York City Police have used Long Range Acoustic Devices or LRADs to break up crowds of protestors, but there is nothing subtle or mysterious about these devices. These bulky machines are nicknamed “sound cannons” due to their capacity to blast ear-piercing noises. The U.S. Navy has used similar devices to protect their ships by warding off small vessels suspected of carrying terrorists or pirates, while the Army has used them to clear houses of combatants.10 In 2015, riot police in the Philippines even blasted Katy Perry music to disperse anti-government protestors.11

Another oddity surrounds how diplomats have been targeted. Many claim to have been “attacked” in their homes, and even a hotel. Why were some people affected while others who were standing next to them, were not? While the U.S. cannot prove that the Cubans are responsible, White House Chief of Staff John Kelly has suggested that the Cuban government knows more than they are letting on. “We believe that the Cuban government could stop the attacks on our diplomats,” he said.12 Cuban President Raúl Castro vehemently denies any involvement in the “attacks” and has taken the extraordinary step of inviting the Federal Bureau of Investigation to travel to Cuba and conduct their own investigation.13 Since June, FBI agents have been on the Caribbean island conducting forensic analyses of the possible crime scenes, but remain stumped.14 This leaves one plausible explanation for the illness cluster in Cuba: mass psychogenic illness.

To those who are unfamiliar with the capabilities of sonic weaponry, the claims may sound ominous—and very real. After all, how can conditions like hearing loss and brain trauma be psychological in origin? State Department officials have even released a recording of the “weapon” in action. Yet the recording proves little. The high-pitched whine sounds like a swarm of cicadas. It could be anything. It is the equivalent of a blurry UFO photograph or grainy Bigfoot video. Furthermore, most of the symptoms are vague. Terms like “brain trauma” and “hearing loss” sound alarming but tell us little, and none of the medical records have been released. This could be done without violating privacy laws by redacting the names and identifying information about the “victims.” How many diplomats are suffering from hearing loss, and is it partial or total? Why haven’t they given us more specific figures? Is it one case or 17—and if it is the latter, why haven’t they said so in order to convince a skeptical media? There may very well be a small number of personnel who are experiencing health issues that are unrelated to either psychogenic illness or a sonic weapon.

Sick Building Syndrome

The literature on mass hysteria is filled with reports of so-called “sick buildings” where some harmful agent is blamed for a mysterious illness outbreak, most commonly in schools and factories. However, once the premises are tested, the results are negative. The symptoms often continue to recur, so long as the perceived agent is believed to remain. The failure to identify a potential culprit may generate more anxiety, leading to further outbreaks. Common suspects include pesticides from nearby farm fields, gas leaks, mold, and contaminated water. In these cases, the outbreak is triggered by the spread of an idea, aided by rumors, folklore, and erroneous media reports about the “toxic” building. Often speculation centers around nearby waste dumps. This could explain the illness reports at the Embassy, but what about their homes? Embassy staff would have been aware of the history of American diplomats in Cuba, and the Cold War folklore that included harassment of personnel in their homes.

Cold War Context

The historical backdrop of the “attack” may have contributed to the outbreak. The Embassy closed for 54 years, from 1961 when then President Dwight Eisenhower severed ties with Castro’s rise to power, to its reopening in 2015. While the Embassy was closed, the U.S. has maintained a diplomatic presence in Cuba such as the mission at the United States Interests Section in Havana. Due to the antagonistic relationship between the two countries, during the Cold War Cuban agents engaged in a series of antics that have become part of American Intelligence folklore. These actions were more harassing and prankish than sinister. They would do things like sneak into the homes of diplomats and rearrange their bookshelf or furniture. On the high end of the scale, some diplomats reported returning home to find fecal matter lying on their floor. The context of the illness cluster fits neatly with the psychogenic hypothesis as you have a group of people working in an anxious environment amid reports and rumors of a mysterious attack.15

Earlier Hum Scares

Since the early 1940s there have been similar outbreaks involving claims of mysterious humming sounds reportedly making people sick, especially in the United States. The most famous of these is the “Kokomo Hum” in the city of Kokomo, Indiana. Some have even suggested that the American military was conducting secret tests on its own citizens. Conspiracy theorists have had a field day with these cases. In 1999, Kokomo city officials were besieged by complaints from at least 90 residents, many of whom claimed that the hum was not only irritating, but ruining their health.16

A study of one Kokomo neighborhood by an acoustics engineer seemed to confirm the reality of the hum after he reported detecting a low frequency sound at about 55 decibels and 15 hertz—too low to be heard by the human ear. At the time, an expert from the Acoustical Society of America observed that the origin of the sound was unclear. “Those levels of sound could be coming from road traffic on even distant highways, air or rail activity or possibly just some industrial plants or even commercial buildings in the area. And, in fact, those levels could be caused just by the wind in the trees,” said Bennett Brooks. He cautioned that the range of ill-effects attributed to the low frequency hum could be entirely imaginary. “The levels that will rattle dishes on a wall…haven’t been shown to cause health problems, other than perhaps people waking up at night worrying,” Brooks said at the time.17 Some Kokomo residents were so concerned by the “hum” that they moved away.

Similar claims of ill-health associated with the presence of low-frequency sound have been recorded in Taos, New Mexico, since 1991, but the source has neither been determined nor any conclusive link to ill-health including sleep problems, earaches, irritability, and general discomfort.18 Investigative journalist Oliver Libaw notes that various investigations of the Taos Hum “failed to measure any low-frequency vibration that experts believed could cause either the noise or the infirmities reported by those who heard it.”19

London and South Hampton in the United Kingdom have had their own Hum Scares. Scores of residents have complained of an irritating low frequency sound dating back to the 1940s. They too have claims that it has caused health problems. In 1989, an organization was formed to investigate reports: The Low Frequency Noise Sufferers Association, nicknamed “the Hummers.”20

The “sonic attack” on embassy staff in Cuba appears to be a case of old wine in new skins. It is the Hum Scare and Sick Building Syndrome dressed up in a different social and cultural garb. These scares may resonate because they reflect prevailing fears such as the distrust of foreign and domestic governments. It may be no coincidence then that the outbreak reportedly began just days after the election of Donald Trump, an administration known for promoting conspiracy theories. END

About the Author

Dr. Robert Bartholomew is a medical sociologist who holds a Ph.D. from James Cook University in Australia. He is an authority on culture-specific mental disorders, outbreaks of mass psychogenic illness, moral panics and the history of tabloid journalism. He has conducted anthropological fieldwork among the Malays in Malaysia and Aborigines in Central Australia. His most recently books are A Colorful History of Popular Delusions with Peter Hassall and American Hauntings: The True Stories Behind Hollywood’s Scariest Movies—From Exorcist to The Conjuring with Joe Nickell. Read his previous article, An Outbreak of Mass Hallucinations and Shoddy Journalism: Why We Need Skepticism More Than Ever.


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Years ago, fairy tales all began with, "Once upon a time." Now we know they all began with, "If I'm elected."

Carolyn Warner