The cause of the so-called "Havana syndrome" impacting US diplomats, spies, and the family members living with them abroad remains a mystery, or so administration officials were told last week, reported the New York Times at the time. That mystery deepened yet again on Wednesday with an exclusive report from the Wall Street Journal claiming at least two more US officials—in this case stationed in Germany—have experienced symptoms consistent with the ailment.
Per the Journal, "they are the first cases to be reported in a NATO country that hosts US troops and nuclear weapons." They are not, however, the first to be reported in Europe, with some 20 officials in Vienna, Austria, having reported symptoms this year; that's the most since Cuba, where the symptoms—among them headaches, vertigo, and vision issues—were first reported in 2016. Standout lines from the report:
- "US diplomats said that similar incidents had been registered among American officials stationed in other European nations but declined to provide any detail. Some victims were intelligence officers or diplomats working on Russia-related issues such as gas exports, cybersecurity and political interference, according to US diplomats and people familiar with an investigation into the illness."
- Echoing that, this earlier from an NBC News source: "It is global—but there seems to be an awful lot going on in Europe," the source said in July. Its report notes some suspected cases in Vienna date to more than a decade ago.
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