Logo for The Sound: Mystery of Havana Syndrome

The Sound: Mystery of Havana Syndrome

Brazen

In December 2016, a US official in Havana went to the embassy medical centre to report a debilitating and confounding  illness. The symptoms included headaches; nausea; hearing loss; problems with memory and vision – and its onset was characterized by hearing… something. A buzzing, hissing, grinding… sound.

Soon, a second official came down with the same symptoms. Then a third. Then a fourth. By the time the story went public in summer 2017, dozens of US diplomats, as well as some Canadians, had come down with what was becoming known as “Havana Syndrome.”

In this deep dive investigation, journalist Nicky Woolf peels back the layers of one of the most bizarre mysteries of the modern age. The Sound is a story about spycraft, technology, and the brain. It’s a story where, at every turn, you’re never quite sure what’s real and what’s an illusion. It’s a story about how the Cold War, maybe, never really ended.

The Sound is a Project Brazen production. For more fearless storytelling, search for the Brazen channel on Apple Podcasts or visit brazen.fm, home to all our podcasts, documentaries and newsletters. At Brazen, we show you how the world really works – from espionage and corruption to deal-making and organised crime, we’ll take you inside stories from hidden worlds. 

Don’t stay in the dark. Subscribe to Brazen+ on Apple Podcasts or at brazen.fm/plus and get exclusive bonus episodes for The Sound and all our shows, as well as ad-free listening and early access to new podcasts. For the latest from Brazen delivered straight to your inbox, subscribe to our newsletters at brazen.fm/newsletters.

Copyright © 2024 Brazen

In December 2016, a US official in Havana went to the embassy medical centre to report a debilitating and confounding  illness. The symptoms included headaches; nausea; hearing loss; problems with memory and vision – and its onset was characterized by hearing… something. A buzzing, hissing, grinding… sound.

Soon, a second official came down with the same symptoms. Then a third. Then a fourth. By the time the story went public in summer 2017, dozens of US diplomats, as well as some Canadians, had come down with what was becoming known as “Havana Syndrome.”

In this deep dive investigation, journalist Nicky Woolf peels back the layers of one of the most bizarre mysteries of the modern age. The Sound is a story about spycraft, technology, and the brain. It’s a story where, at every turn, you’re never quite sure what’s real and what’s an illusion. It’s a story about how the Cold War, maybe, never really ended.

The Sound is a Project Brazen production. For more fearless storytelling, search for the Brazen channel on Apple Podcasts or visit brazen.fm, home to all our podcasts, documentaries and newsletters. At Brazen, we show you how the world really works – from espionage and corruption to deal-making and organised crime, we’ll take you inside stories from hidden worlds. 

Don’t stay in the dark. Subscribe to Brazen+ on Apple Podcasts or at brazen.fm/plus and get exclusive bonus episodes for The Sound and all our shows, as well as ad-free listening and early access to new podcasts. For the latest from Brazen delivered straight to your inbox, subscribe to our newsletters at brazen.fm/newsletters.

Copyright © 2024 Brazen

Introducing The Sound: Mystery of Havana Syndrome

Thumbnail for "Introducing The Sound: Mystery of Havana Syndrome".
January 9, 20232min 12sec

In December 2016, a US official in Havana went to the embassy medical centre to report a debilitating and confounding  illness. The symptoms included headaches; nausea; hearing loss; problems with memory and vision – and its onset was characterized by hearing… something. A buzzing, hissing, grinding… sound.

Soon, a second official came down with the same symptoms. Then a third. Then a fourth. By the time the story went public in summer 2017, dozens of US diplomats, as well as some Canadians, had come down with what was becoming known as “Havana Syndrome.”

In this deep dive investigation, journalist Nicky Woolf peels back the layers of one of the most bizarre mysteries of the modern age. You’ll hear about how the US agencies failed to agree even on the basic premises. State department said it’s a “sonic device,” then rolled that back. The CIA have hinted microwave radiation might be involved. The FBI said there was no “there” there – now they seem to be rolling that back as well.

We’ll explore the wild and wide variety of theories that have been put forward. Could it be caused by noisy crickets? Or mosquito spray? Or could it all be a mass delusion? We’ll hear from the cast of characters who inhabit this world; diplomats and spies, neurologists and physicists, skeptics and believers – and, with their help, begin to piece the evidence together.

THE SOUND is a story about spycraft, technology, and the brain. It’s a story where, at every turn, you’re never quite sure what’s real and what’s an illusion. It’s a story about how the Cold War, maybe, never really ended.

www.soundistheweapon.com

The Sound is a Project Brazen production. Subscribe to Brazen+ on Apple Podcasts or at brazen.fm/plus and get exclusive bonus episodes for The Sound and all our shows, as well as ad-free listening and early access to new podcasts.

For more fearless storytelling visit brazen.fm, home to all our podcasts, documentaries and newsletters. At Brazen, we show you how the world really works – from espionage and corruption to deal-making and organised crime, we’ll take you inside stories from hidden worlds.