12 September 2018
Cogito Ergo Non Serviam
US diplomats in Cuba and China experienced injuries from unexplained attacks initially resembling sonic assaults starting late in 2016. The victims said they heard strange sounds before they suffered "brain injuries, hearing loss and problems with cognition, balance, vision and hearing problems." Whatever technology was used, it appears from signal intelligence that Russia is the likely suspect behind the whole affair.
NBC has clearly reported, "The evidence is not yet conclusive enough, however, for the U.S. to formally assign blame to Moscow . . . ." So while it may not meet the standard for a criminal trial of "beyond a reasonable doubt,” it probably meets the level of a civil trial "preponderance of the evidence." The Russian government declined to comment. One expects a denial to come soon, and of course, they would say that, wouldn't they?
The idea that Russia would attack US diplomats in Cuba is more than plausible. After all, the Kremlin thinks nothing of using polonium or novichok to murder disloyal Russians in Britain. President Putin is an old school imperialist. Syria belonged in Russia's orbit, based on historical ties, so when rebels in Syria threatened to overthrow the al Assad government, which allows the Russian to keep a naval and air base in Syria, the Russian Army intervened. Cuba is even more closely tied to Russia historically speaking. The warming of relations between Havana and Washington under the Obama administration clearly upset the Russia imperialists.
The US government is exercising caution, which in these days of Donald Trump is a welcome mercy. "The State Department has come to the determination that they were attacks," Ambassador Peter Boode, who leads the task force responding to the incidents, told a House Foreign Affairs Committee panel. But at the same time, in a statement, State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said, "The investigation is ongoing. We have made no determination on who or what is responsible for the health attacks." Someone attacked but naming names will take a while.
When there is definite proof, the question becomes what will Mr. Trump do? If the culprit is Cuba, for example, one can expect harsh retaliation. If it is Russia, will Mr. Trump finally be pushed to standing up to Mr. Putin? Moreover, it is not beyond belief that Russia led the attack but received support from Cuba.
The Chinese dimension is also troubling. While secondary in scope and size, "one U.S. worker in China was diagnosed with similar symptoms after hearing bizarre sounds in Guangzhou, and more from China are being tested." Russian intelligence operates widely in China, and it would not be surprising to find Chinese assets in support of a Russian operation against the US in Guangzhou.
The Russian intelligence services have always been aggressive beyond the rules of international law and order. Deterring their actions is vital if one is not to invite further disruptions to civilized behavior. Sanctions are excellent if the individuals responsible are identifiable because they are so precisely targeted. If such identification is not possible, a cybernetic response would get the point across.
© Copyright 2018 by The Kensington Review, Jeff Myhre, PhD, Editor. No part of this publication may be reproduced without written consent. Produced using Ubuntu Linux.