Congress is demanding answers over why a number of US diplomats fell ill, and suffered hearing loss, after observing secret sonic technology in action. The diplomats were touring Cuba last year, where the US government showed them a secret new weapon, which left quite an impact!
Congress specifically want to find out what Jeffrey DeLaurentis, the chief of mission in Cuba under President Barack Obama, knew about the incidents. They are also vying to find out whether the Obama administration attempted to keep the incident under the covers in a bid to protect the former president’s diplomatic détente with the small Caribbean nation.
Lawmakers have asked to be briefed by the State Department, and a classified briefing has been scheduled for Monday – where only staffers are expected to be in attendance.
With this event occurring in the waning days of the Obama Administration, lawmakers are asking why Obama failed to publically acknowledge the incident, or inform congress. One congressional aide, who has been watching this issue develop said, “The real question is what the Obama administration knew and why they didn’t do anything about it.”
Heather Nauert, spokeswoman for the State Department refused to confirm if, “acoustic weapons” had caused the “ailments” in Cuba. Instead, she said the investigation was ongoing and she did not want to make any assumptions.
When pressed, the State Department continued to be evasive, saying, “We consider these to be incidents. We still are trying to determine the actual cause of their situation,” she said, “They have had a variety of symptoms. This is an active investigation, and that investigation is ongoing at this time.”
Nauert also refrained from confirming recently surfaced reports that US authorities have collaborated with the Canadian government to try to find out what exactly happened. She further rejected speculations that Russia may have anything to do with the incident.
“This is a situation we are still assessing,” she said. “We can’t blame any one country. We have spoken extensively with the Cubans, as you know. The reason we had [the diplomats] leave is we said this is the agreement that the U.S. has with the Cuban government. They are responsible for the safety and security of our [diplomat]. They are not safe, they are not secure because something happened to them.”