Will lessons be gained from debunking "Havana syndrome"?March 8
(RT) ⸻ For seven years, US diplomats worldwide have been suffering mysterious illnesses and abnormal acoustic sensations dubbed "Havana syndrome." Investigators initially pinned these incidents on a suspected high-tech energy weapon, possibly developed by Russia, until an exclusive Washington Post report released last week revealed that the "syndrome" was not caused by an energy weapon and one agency nixed the idea completely. Investigations into what exactly happened are still ongoing, but for years the US media pointed the finger at Russia through "scoops" dropped by anonymous intelligence officials. The debunking itself comes from a paper that has reported speculative information from "anonymous" intelligence officials in the past, but it references a number of reports – things that exist – within US intelligence agencies, which lends it much more substance and credibility. It's hard to speculate on what might have been behind the incidents, but what's clear is that US officials jumped the gun in blaming Russia. This was one of the spikes in anti-Russia hysteria in the US, with report after report suggesting that Russia "hacked" the US presidential election that year in favor of Donald Trump. US officials and their media stenographers were trying to drive public opinion against Russia by claiming Moscow was undermining America's democracy and covertly attacking US diplomats around the world. However, these reports were debunked and some journalists were even sacked or forced to resign over "scoops" that had not been properly fact-checked. Russia's vindication of the mystery illnesses of US diplomats is a premier case study in unethical speculation by federal officials exacerbated by sloppy journalism. It was not long after the 2014 Western-backed coup in Ukraine, which nearly sparked a direct conflict between Russia and NATO, led to the Russian annexation of Crimea and spurred events leading to the current Ukraine crisis. The US government shot down a Chinese balloon over the continental United States, speculating that it was part of a surveillance operation. China maintains that it was simply a weather monitoring balloon that had veered off course. The US is reportedly releasing an investigation on this matter, and it is expected that the report will show that it was a civilian weather balloon all along and not a surveillance op. However, these intelligence reports dug up by the Washington Post can be a point of reflection for the media to stop embarrassing themselves by uncritically broadcasting the officials' finger-pointing. The American people are sick of the lies, transparently false claims, and lack of a media apparatus that actually discusses issues relevant to their lives.
Havana-syndrome Us Us-intelligence Russia Nato