The Sound That Gave American Diplomats In Cuba Brain Damage


An audio recording of the high-pitched sound that American intelligence officials believe caused U.S. diplomats in Cuba brain damage was released Thursday afternoon.  MORE

22 Comments on The Sound That Gave American Diplomats In Cuba Brain Damage

  1. So these 22 (likely communist sympathizers) will likely be compensated for the rest of their life by the taxpayers because of this stupid sound. Diagnosis and determination of medical damage done in just a month or so.
    But we can’t get medical help to veterans and things like the diagnosis of biological and chemical exposures that our troops in harms way get exposed to takes decades. Par for the course.

  2. Between tinnitus and “hearing loss” from spending 36 years around motors of all sorts, I ain’t gonna even try to listen (not that I’d hear anything, anyway).

    Being damaged in the service of one’s country seems to be standard, not exceptional.

    I wish them the best – they should be allowed to visit VA hospitals.

    izlamo delenda est …

  3. I, like others, received no hearing protection when overseas as military personnel.
    When test firing our weapons at a makeshift range at the foot of a small mountain, I put cigarette filters in my ears to deaden the sound. On patrol we used nothing.

    Since 1970 I have had a constant high pitched ringing in my ears and loss of hearing. It used to bug me, but after 47 years I got used to it.
    I have found that if I don’t always hear the conversation, smiling and nodding in the affirmative isn’t always the correct response.

    The incident that impacted me the most was when I returned from overseas on a 30 day leave, I went to see my uncle, whom I like and respected.

    He took me to the country club for lunch (way out of my league for a heathen) and was sharing with me about his friends beautiful daughter who was killed in a car accident. I didn’t hear all the words, except beautiful daughter, I sat there smiling.

    He was plainly agitated and asked me, “What the hell are you smiling about?” I had no explanation. We finished lunch in silence and I returned overseas 20 days later to finish my last tour.

    Non-stop High pitched ringing sound? yes. Hearing loss? yes. Compensation? Never pursued. Brain damage? I don’t think so, but I’m no doctor, but I play one in commercials (not really).

  4. That’s interesting. It is very close to what one of my tinnitus’ sounds sound like.

    Maybe I’m being targeted and my hearing is just fine!

    I too have gotten used to it. I would say the most negative thing about it is I don’t trust my hearing so much when there is, supposedly, nothing creating sound waves. I hear a combo of crickets that aren’t constant mixed with a thin high-pitched line similar to this audio.

    Occasionally I do need to ask for a repeat of what was said, but generally I can hear what everyone else hears. Being able to hear matters in the bug biz, too. From the buzzing of a hive in a wall to locating the scratching of an animal in a house.

    Then there are the times I pretend I’m deaf for my own sake. Like when I’m “gringoed” from time to time, or when a woman asks me to guess how old she is.

  5. Tinnitus here, too. Must have been the loud concerts in my younger days. Started about 20 years ago and I hardly notice it anymore except when I think about it.

  6. “And I should listen to this sound, why?”

    Because it’s one of the prettiest sounds on earth. After the Call to Prayer, of course.

  7. @cato: When I was in Dong Tam (RVN) they put our unit about 50 yds. behind a battery of 8-inch self-propelled howitzers. When those suckers fired, they could blow out a candle in your hooch with the concussion. Ever since then I have had some tinnitus and my ears have been very sensitive to loud noises.

  8. @Vietvet
    My Dad was on the USS Minneapolis, Heavy Cruiser (CA-36) as part of the Marine Detachment during WWII, he was part of the crew for the Bofors 40mm anti-aircraft guns which were close to the muzzle of the 8 in. guns.
    Went to one of his WW II Detachment reunions, great guys, not one could hear worth a lick, some were deaf and the rest had hearing aids. It was a trip….seeing 80 and 90 yr. old guys with the glimmer in their eyes of a 20 year old when talking about their experiences during WW II. It was an honor !

  9. Having been a Plane captain (crew chief) on F4J Phantoms when I was in the Navy and working on the flight deck of the USS Kitty Hawk CV 63 when I was 20-22 years old in the mid 70’s has definitely caused me to lose part of my hearing. The standard Mickey Mouse ear protectors we wore definitely could’ve been far better even with ear plugs, the noise from an F4 and other jets taking off from the flight deck during launch was thunderously loud up close as we were to the planes. And all the other assorted noises from being on the flight deck during flight ops caused a lot of guys to lose their hearing as we got older. The good thing about it is at least I can feign ignorance when there are things I don’t want to hear or when I am in a crowd. If you talk straight at me I can hear well enough but if you are walking away from me and talking I don’t hear much of anything. My kids and friends just know to talk where I can see their lips move that I can hear fairly well. As for the TV and radio I have been accused of cranking them up to warp factor 9 just to hear the dialogue and it’s hard to hear dialogue in movies as well. My dad who is 88 is far worse, he has a very hard time hearing anything unless you speak right towards him but he has selective hearing (so do I at times) as well and really only hears what he wants to hear. So it goes, I hope the young guys and gals working around jets nowadays have better ear protection than we did but I doubt it.

  10. I could feel it in my
    teeth and my bones.Bad stuff.
    There is probably some freq.s
    way above human hearing mixed just right
    to tard out your brain… Asked the people that
    were there,Did you hear any dogs yelping or howling
    when you heard the sound ?

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