BBC journalists publish material about the strange story of former CIA officer Mark Polymeropoulos, who, according to him, was exposed to secret microwave weapons in his hotel room during a business trip to Moscow: “I felt like I was about to vomit. I could not get up, I fell. My head was spinning, my ears were ringing. I was shot many times, but it was the worst experience of my life..."
This experienced intelligence officer worked for many years in Iraq, Syria and Afghanistan, and in 2016, when the United States suspected the Kremlin of meddling in the American presidential elections, the CIA transferred him to the position of acting chief of secret operations in Europe and Eurasia. He also took part in revealing the involvement of Russian agents in the poisoning in England of a former GRU officer Sergey Skripal.
In December 2017, Polymeropoulos ended up in Moscow, and at the very beginning he felt unwell. Later, his dizziness passed, but he still feels other signs of influence today: "For three years in a row I have been tormented by migraines every day..."
Curiously, similar symptoms are described by US and Canadian diplomats working in Cuba: a sudden noise that causes severe pain, or pressure on the head, leading to dizziness. This phenomenon was called the "Havana syndrome".
However, different people have experienced different symptoms, and some believe that there is no connection between all these cases. However, in December 2020, experts from the US National Academy of Sciences concluded that all of these symptoms "are consistent with exposure to directional, pulsed radio frequency energy," and that they do not have other possible causes - poisoning or psychological problems of the victims: "We really found that the study group of people had some very unusual and distinct clinical indicators in the initial period of their illness, and it was these data that led us to such conclusions.
It turned out that radiation affects everyone a little differently, and besides, in all likelihood, the device that emits these waves could be modified.
As a result, in 2019, Polymeropoulos was forced to retire for health reasons and decided to make this information public in order to draw public attention to it. The Havana Syndrome is now being taken more seriously, as it is believed to have killed at least five people and the number is growing: “This happened to several other high-ranking CIA officials. And some of the victims seem to have been somehow involved in the confrontation with Russia. And there are officers who suffer in silence".
Similar cases occurred not only in Russia or Cuba, but also in China, Australia, Poland and Georgia, and even in England. So, one of the former British intelligence officers said that if evidence of Russia's involvement in these stories is found, "the rules of the game will radically change".
Moreover, there are some secret data based on mobile phone billing that Russian intelligence officers were in the immediate vicinity of the CIA officers at the time of the impact. However, so far the information collected by the CIA on the "Havana Syndrome" cannot be called convincing enough for official accusations of Russia's involvement in this.
The Air Force puts forward several versions. One of them believes that the damage caused was a side effect of the operation of a certain device, which, using irradiation of electronic devices, collected intelligence - similar things happened back in the Cold War, when "Russian special services literally flooded the US Embassy in Moscow with streams of microwaves and electronic impulses." and for this, special minibuses were also used, traveling next to people in whom the special services were interested. Polymeropoulos himself also assumed that this was an attempt by the Russian special services to collect intelligence, but various direct and indirect evidence of evidence convinced him that Moscow had used "offensive weapons" against him.
Be that as it may, these accusations are in conflict with an unspoken agreement, according to which the secret services cannot cause physical harm to their opponents. True, retired intelligence officers from the CIA and MI6 are confident that the Soviet secret services even used a radioactive substance called "spy dust" in order to monitor the movements of Western agents in Russia. And now they are ready to go even further, as was the case with the Skripals...
The Russian Foreign Ministry, in response to an inquiry from the Air Force, said that "such provocative, groundless speculations and fantastic hypotheses cannot be considered a serious subject for comment".
However, the new US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken has already promised to disclose more information about the "Havana syndrome", and that if a foreign government is involved in it, it will be held responsible.
If it can be proven that Russia has used microwave weapons against US intelligence personnel, the consequences could be enormous. True, it will be very difficult to prove this.
Mark Polymeropoulos himself says: “It would be better if they shot me. It would be better if there was an open wound in me that could be healed than what is happening to me now".