Perhaps not Sonic Warfare/Harassment

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L'Emmerdeur
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Perhaps not Sonic Warfare/Harassment

Post by L'Emmerdeur » Sun Mar 11, 2018 5:38 pm

I checked around and didn't find a thread about the issue of strange high-pitched sounds apparently causing illness in some staff at the US embassy in Havana. Maybe my search-fu was simply ineffective. :dunno:

Some researchers at the University of Michigan think they may have come up with an explanation. It doesn't completely exonerate the Cuban government, rather the contrary. If correct, these scientists do provide a slightly less sinister explanation, however.

"Did These Computer Scientists Solve the Cuban ‘Sonic Attack’?"
A technical report from the University of Michigan offers a stunningly simple theory for the source of the Cuban “sonic attack”: a pair of eavesdropping devices too close to each other and tripping the ultrasound that ironically was supposed to make their presence quiet.

More importantly, it might not have been done with malicious intent.

“It doesn’t prove it’s the cause,” Kevin Fu, an associate professor at the University of Michigan and one of the co-authors of the study, cautioned. “It’s a correlation. But to us, it seems like a strong correlation.”

A recap: Last September, the State Department recalled 21 American employees from the U.S. embassy in Havana. These employees, along with three Canadians, reported dizziness, cognitive difficulties, headaches, and hearing loss, among other medical issues, according to an official statement made by Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. The victims of what was being termed a “sonic attack” reported hearing a high-pitched sound that made them physically ill.

In December, the AP reported that patients showed “unprecedented” neurological damage, with hearing loss, memory problems, and cognitive issues. This prompted further speculation as to what the “sonic terror” device was: Some thought it was an advanced Russian tool that was sneaked into the embassy; others thought it was poisoning. A Cuban panel of scientists thought the “psychogenesis” was brought about by stress.

To add to the confusion, doctors weren’t sure either what was going on. In a preliminary report published in JAMA, physicians treating the patients could only say a “novel mechanism” caused the neurological damage. A companion report in JAMA published last month came to no conclusion as to what could possibly be causing the neurological damage patients had suffered.

...

Fu and his team were working on a project testing the audibility of ultrasound in another project, but the AP video caught their eye.

“At the time, people were talking about ultrasound [being a theory as to what the sound was],” Fu said. “But it didn’t make sense. Ultrasound is inaudible [to humans], and you wouldn’t hear it.”

...

But what if the ultrasound here got tripped up by an interruption—perhaps a pair of eavesdropping devices whose transmission got tangled over what was supposed to be an inaudible ultrasonic link but instead became audible?

Fu and his colleagues tested this theory by having an eavesdropping device record conversations that were then sent over to a surveillance team via ultrasonic link, which was supposed to be inaudible to the human ear. But Fu’s group also dropped another otherwise-inaudible ultrasonic device in the vicinity of the first device, creating interference—what’s known as “intermodulation distortion”—that could lead to the 7 kHz tinny sound the team replicated and identified in the AP’s sound recording.

“It doesn’t prove that this is what happened in Cuba,” Fu cautioned. “But it does show that there’s a reasonable probability that it’s an accident rather than someone causing harm [intentionally].”

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Re: Perhaps not Sonic Warfare/Harassment

Post by Tero » Sun Mar 11, 2018 6:34 pm

You know how they put steel in concrete to make it stronger? Well, all the embassies in Moscow are made of concrete reinforced with microphones.

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Re: Perhaps not Sonic Warfare/Harassment

Post by Scot Dutchy » Sun Mar 11, 2018 6:42 pm

That does not happen in Washington I presume?
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Re: Perhaps not Sonic Warfare/Harassment

Post by Tero » Sun Mar 11, 2018 7:48 pm

I’m not up on latestmethod. Would have to watch NCIS with that in mind.

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Re: Perhaps not Sonic Warfare/Harassment

Post by L'Emmerdeur » Sun Mar 11, 2018 10:56 pm

The construction of the Russian (formerly Soviet) embassy building in Washington was very closely monitored by Soviets to prevent listening devices being built into it.
On the Russia side of the equation, when they were building their embassy in Washington, their part of the deal said that all building materials for their embassy would be constructed on site. They had Soviet officials on site overseeing every aspect of the construction, down to the level of every single beam, every single board. Everything that went into that embassy was cut and cast and assembled at the building site under their own people’s supervision.

And just to be doubly safe, every component that went into building the Russian embassy in Washington, D.C. was x-rayed piece by piece as it was put together to make sure there was no funny business, there was no CIA bugs for the Russian embassy, right? Nothing had been concerted into the construction materials somehow. That was the Russian side of the deal.
For the US embassy building in Moscow, things went a bit differently.
The American side of the deal was different. The American side of the deal, for our building in Moscow, U.S. government negotiated that, yes, American workers and American officials would be responsible for all the finish work, like, the fine work inside the building, but when it came to the basic guts of the building, like the beams and the concrete and the pre-cast floor panels and all the columns, those would all be prefab manufactured in Soviet facilities by Soviet workers and then brought complete on to the construction site where the U.S. would watch, basically, while the Russian workers assembled our new embassy for us in Moscow.

Who made this deal?

So, yes, like, American workers got to put in the windows and the doors and stuff. But when it came to the actual building building, that was built by the Russians for us. Ah, that was very nice of them. They controlled the design. They controlled all the fundamental construction, building of that embassy in Moscow started in 1979. By 19 – honestly, by 1979, by ‘80, by ‘81, by ‘82, the U.S. realized we had a serious problem on our hands with that building.

...

“New York Times” did a great recap in 1988 as to what had gone wrong with the case of the bugged embassy. Quote: They discovered interconnecting systems so sophisticated they couldn’t be removed from the steel and concrete columns, the beams, the pre-cast floor slabs, the sheer walls between the columns. They found electronic packages where a piece of steel reinforcement in the flooring should have been. They found resonating devices that allowed the Russians to monitor electronic and verbal communications.

One engineer who worked on the site from 1980 to 1982 said, quote, we found things that didn’t belong there, based on the shop drawings. We found cables in the concrete. And it wasn’t like some low-level hack job. It was very sophisticated.

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Re: Perhaps not Sonic Warfare/Harassment

Post by Scot Dutchy » Mon Mar 12, 2018 8:36 am

Yep I remember that.

Well the new American embassy that has just been completed here. Built by Romanians.

Model:
Image

The real thing:

Image

At least we get rid of the monster in town:

Image
"Wat is het een gezellig boel hier".

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