Target USA Podcast by WTOP

Target USA -- Episode 78: US diplomats sickened, forced to leave Cuba after invisible attacker struck

"Official" Washington was rattled on Aug. 9 when news broke that U.S. diplomats in Havana had been sickened a mysterious illness that no one could put their finger on. It was so bad that several had to be sent home or reassigned. It had been going on for months. But no one had any answers until doctors determined they were likely suffering from some kind of ultrasonic device. It is a weapon that authorities struggled to define. CBS correspondent Steve Dorsey broke the story. He tells Target USA what he's learned. Also, former State Department counterintelligence official Robert Booth tells us he believes he's figured out what happened.

00:00:00 8/17/2017

Past Episodes

James Clapper spent more than 50 years in the U.S. intelligence community. His last posting was director of national intelligence, serving under President Barack Obama. He's written a book about his career called "Facts and Fears." He spoke with Target USA, and candidly discussed "the truth about Russia's role in the presidential election," the Osama bin Laden raid, the Benghazi attack, and the Edward Snowden leaks.
00:00:00 6/13/2018
On Aug. 9, 2017, CBS correspondent Steve Dorsey broke the story that U.S. diplomats in Havana had been sickened by a mysterious illness, the cause of which no one could put their finger on. At the time no one had any answers about what happened. Doctors determined they were likely suffering from some kind of ultrasonic device. But since then other possibilities have arisen. Chris Simmons, a retired supervisory counterintelligence officer from the Defense Intelligence Agency with deep experience related to Cuba, has a theory and supporting evidence that makes perfect sense and is very plausible.
00:00:00 6/6/2018
The U.S. continues grappling with the effects of the Russian government's meddling before, during and after the 2016 presidential election. The Kremlin's main goal of creating a climate of distrust and chaos was largely successful. And in the process, U.S. officials, experts and average citizens are pointing fingers ? blaming each other for allowing it to happen. Lithuania, which has had a long and difficult history in Russia's shadow and has been victimized by Russia's "alternative" views of truth for many years, has some advice for U.S. officials. Foreign Minister Linas Linkevicius visited Washington on May 16 to meet with U.S. officials and counseled against trying to compromise with Russia because, he said, that would be a sign of weakness to the Kremlin.
00:00:00 5/30/2018
Two-and-a-half years ago, Suzanne Kelly, one of the top intelligence reporters in the U.S., took a leap. She started an online national security, intelligence publication to offer news consumers in-depth news, analysis and well-qualified experts on those topics. What she got in return far exceeded that. "Our biggest accomplishment to date has been that we very quickly became 'must read' material within the IC (Intelligence Community)," Kelly said. "We're read within the FBI, ODNI, White House and Pentagon. What has surprised me a little bit is how large of a loyal audience we've been able to grow outside of the IC and national security apparatus." In fact, Microsoft and McDonald's are among the global private sector companies that depend on The Cipher Brief. Kelly joined us on Target USA to discuss the venture.
00:00:00 5/23/2018
The United States and Pakistan have had a steady relationship for 70 years. But in that period, the affiliation has been beset by ups and downs, including the Osama bin Laden saga. Now, yet another "misunderstanding," as characterized on this episode by Aizaz Chaudhry, Pakistan's ambassador to the U.S., threatens to derail this critical relationship. And interestingly enough, new information related to the bin Laden story surfaces in this podcast.
00:00:00 5/16/2018
The U.S. and North Korea are moving ahead with plans for President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un to meet. But what happens after the meeting? Is there enough trust between the two to facilitate a nuclear deal? It's a big question, especially considering the U.S. has just pulled out of a similar deal with Iran.
00:00:00 5/9/2018
On the previous episode, retired U.S. spy John Sipher told Target USA that Russia possibly has as many as 225 spies inside the U.S. -- even after 60 were kicked out in March. Bitterly complaining about it, Russia's ambassador grumbled that no U.S. officials would meet with him. One congressman tells us why. And we hear why the U.S. gets the short end of the stick when it comes to tit-for-tat expulsions.
00:00:00 5/2/2018
Russia has more spies in the U.S. than it did during the Cold War. The man who knows all about Russian espionage joins Target USA to break down exactly what the spies are doing and how many are likely at work inside the U.S. during this very tense and dangerous time.
00:42:35 4/25/2018
In an exclusive interview, Europol Executive Director Rob Wainwright tells Target USA that it's just a matter time before terrorists turn to cyber to create chaos: "Down the tracks, how far I don't know, I'm pretty sure we'll see some form of cyber enabled terrorism and I'm surprised that we haven't seen that already." He says they can easily develop the capability by utilizing resources available online. Wainwright discusses that, and the recent and eerie lull in major terror attacks.
00:00:00 4/18/2018
Dozens of prominent Russians have died in the past four years in Russia and in other countries. Several of them died here in the United States. On this episode, U.S. Rep. Gerry Connolly, D-Va., and former FBI agent and former House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers say there is "absolutely" a need for U.S. authorities go back and look at a number of suspicious deaths in the U.S.
00:00:00 4/11/2018

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