U.S. government response to directed-energy attacks affecting U.S. officials

Statements by U.S. President J. Biden and the White House

On the occasion of signing the HAVANA Act [*] into law in October 2021, President Biden confirmed that addressing anomalous health incidents constitutes a top priority for his Administration [*]. During his July 2021 address to the intelligence community, the President stated that his “administration is coordinating a government-wide effort to respond to the incidents, because this challenge demands that departments and agencies, including the entire intelligence community, work together with urgency" [*] [*]. More recently, on February 1st, 2022, he manifested his interest in enhancing the U.S. response to AHI by the swift implementation of the AHI provisions in the FY22 National Defense Authorization Act, including the appointment of an AHI interagency coordinator (NSC Senior Director for Intelligence Programs, Maher Bitar) [*]. He also requested from Agency heads to appoint AHI leads and to update AHI guidance, in accordance with the NDAA provisions.

Memorandum on Implementation of the Anomalous Health Incidents Provisions in the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2022

2022-02-01, White House

Statement of President Joe Biden on Signing HAVANA Act Into Law

2021-10-08, White House

Remarks by President Biden at the Office of the Director of National Intelligence

2021-07-27, White House


The governmental (interagency) effort is led by the White House National Security Council (NSC) which is the principal forum used by the President of the United States for issues related to national security, military and foreign policy. The White House Press Secretary has referred to AHI in the following press briefing.

Press Briefing by Press Secretary Jen Psaki, July 19, 2021

2021-07-21, White House Press Briefing


“The National Security Council — is coordinating a full review of intelligence reporting to ascertain whether there may be previously unreported incidents that fit a broader pattern".

"At this time, we still don’t know the cause of these incidents or whether they constitute an attack of some kind by a foreign actor. These are areas of active inquiry, something that our intelligence community is working on and very focused on.”

The Intel Community Expert Panel Report

Press release announcing the publication of the declassified executive summary of the IC Experts Panel report

2022-02-02, ODNI

"Pulsed electromagnetic energy, particularly in the radiofrequency range, plausibly explains the core characteristics of reported AHIs, although information gaps exist."

Complementary Efforts on Anomalous Health Incidents

2022-02-02, ODNI

The CIA interim report


Please refer to media reports.

The National Academies of Sciences report

New Report Assesses Illnesses Among U.S. Government Personnel and Their Families at Overseas Embassies

2020-12-05, The NASEM

"An Assessment of Illness in U.S. Government Employees and Their Families at Overseas Embassies says that among the mechanisms the committee considered, directed, pulsed radio frequency energy appears to be the most plausible mechanism in explaining these cases, especially in individuals with the distinct early symptoms."

Joint Intelligence Community Council Meeting

DNI Haines Holds Joint Intelligence Community Council Meeting in Support of Interagency Efforts to Address Anomalous Health Incidents

2021-08-09, ODNI 

On the occasion of the Joint Intelligence Community Council (JICC) convened in August 2021, the ODNI provided a press release [*] mentioning that "participants unanimously agreed to support the National Security Council-led interagency efforts to address AHI and expressed their view that it is a top priority to identify the cause of AHI, provide the highest level of care to those affected, and prevent such incidents from continuing. Participants also made clear that they will support those affected by AHI to ensure they are believed, heard, and respected, and will work together, including through the sharing of relevant information and by following agreed, standardized medical protocols."

Statement by the FBI director, Chris Wray

"We are working closely under the auspices of the NSC with our interagency partners, especially the CIA, DOD, the State Department and others".

FBI director Chris Wray comments on AHI during congressional hearing for FBI funding


Health Incident Response Task Force by the U.S. State Department - Statements by the U.S. State Department

The U.S. State Department established the “Health Incidents Response Task Force” (HIRTF) in 2018 [*] to address “unexplained health incidents” which affected U.S. government personnel and family members stationed overseas starting in 2016, initially in Havana, Cuba and later in Guangzhou, China. Until then, the term “health incidents” and “health attacks” was been used interchangeably, while Secretary Tillerson had referred to “targeted attacks” [*]. The present administration’s Office of the Director of National Intelligence has introduced the term “anomalous health incidents” or AHI which is used by the interagency. The State Department issued in November 2021 the following statement [*] on anomalous health incidents, on the occasion of the appointment of two HIRTF leaders by Secretary Blinken. The U.S. Secretary of State provided remarks on AHIs and the HIRTF on that instance [*].

Anomalous Health Incidents and the Health Incident Response Task Force

2021-11-05, State Department

Secretary Antony J. Blinken On the Department’s Health Incidents Response Task Force

2021-11-05, State Department

Secretary Blinken’s Visit of Johns Hopkins Anomalous Health Incident Medical Care Operations

2021-12-21, State Department

Establishment of the Health Incidents Response Task Force

2018-06-05, State Department

AIH task force by the CIA - Statements by the CIA Director

In a July 2021 interview [*], CIA Director Bill Burns stated: "I am absolutely determined to get to the bottom of the question of what and who caused this". "And I take very seriously what they've experienced and the threat that these kind of incidents posed".

He added: “There are probably a couple of hundred since Havana in 2016. There are probably a couple of hundred incidents across the U.S. government and across the globe. Of those couple of hundred, there's probably about 100 in which my colleagues, my officers and family members have been affected.”

The CIA has created its own task force which is led, as it was reported in July 2021, by the CIA official who had led the Bin Laden investigation [*].

CIA Director Says He Is Escalating Efforts To Solve 'Havana Syndrome' Mystery

2021-07-22, NPR

Transcript: NPR's Full Conversation With CIA Director William Burns

2021-07-22, NPR interview with CIA Director

Main points:

➡️ Visited Walter Reed on first week in office.

➡️ Tripled CIA medics focused on these issues.

➡️ Reduced waiting time for Walter Reed to less than two weeks.

➡️ Task force - appointment of senior officer who led bin Laden operations.

➡️ Couple of hundred incidents across U.S. government and across the globe. Half are CIA officers and family members.

➡️ On causation: "The National Academy of Sciences, a year ago, in a very extensive report that they did, suggested that the most plausible theory for what caused this was some form of directed energy, and that sort of narrows, then, the number of potential suspects who could have used this, have used it historically and have the reach to do this in more than one part of the world"

Havana Syndrome Task Force to Be Led by Veteran of Hunt for Bin Laden

2021-07-21, WSJ (membership access)

Congressional/legislative work

FY22 NDAA includes Havana Syndrome provisions by Senators Collins and Shaheen associated with respective sponsored legislation, the Havana Act (law) and the Directed Energy Threat Emergency Response Act

2021-12-15, Press release by Sen. Collins

2021-12-15, Press release by Sen. Shaheen

Implementation of AHI Provisions in the NDAA by President Biden

Memorandum on Implementation of the Anomalous Health Incidents Provisions in the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2022

2022-02-01, White House

The HAVANA Act of 2021

Helping American Victims Afflicted by Neurological Attacks Act of 2021 (or the HAVANA Act of 2021)

Public Law No: 117-46 (10/08/2021)

Sponsor: Sen. Collins, Susan M.

Senator Collins’ Bill to Support ‘Havana Syndrome’ Victims Signed into Law

2021-10-08, Press release by Senator Collins

“The legislation led by Senators Collins, Warner, Rubio, and Shaheen will support U.S. Intelligence and Diplomatic staff who have suffered brain injuries likely from directed energy-attacks by an unknown adversary.”

“The HAVANA Act will authorize the CIA Director and the Secretary of State to provide injured employees with additional financial support for brain injuries. Both the CIA and State Department will be required to create regulations detailing fair and equitable criteria for payment. This legislation will also require the CIA and State Department to report to Congress on how this authority is being used and if additional legislative or administrative action is required.” 

Senators Collins, Warner, Rubio, Shaheen Introduce Bill to Support Victims of ‘Havana Syndrome

Click HERE to watch Senator Collins’ remarks (FB post)

Congressional speech of Intel Committee Chairperson during Havana Act Senate session

The Directed Energy Threat Emergency Response Act

Senate: S.2590 - Sponsor: Sen. Shaheen, Jeanne (August 2021)

House: H.R.5263 - Sponsor: Rep. Spanberger, Abigail Davis (September 2021)

Following the "HAVANA Act" addressing care of impacted personnel, the "Directed Energy Threat Emergency Response Act" will also address U.S. government investigation and response. Main points:

(1) A National Security Council "Anomalous Health Incidents Interagency Coordinator" will coordinate the governmental response.

(2) Each agency will have a designated senior official for AHIs.

(3) Increase of awareness, sharing of known defensive measures, mechanism for reporting.

Shaheen Unveils New Bipartisan Bill to Help Americans Affected by Directed Energy Attacks & Direct Unified Government Response

Rubio Joins Shaheen, Colleagues to Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Help Americans Affected by Directed Energy Attacks & Direct Unified Government Response

Collins, Shaheen Unveil Bipartisan Bill to Help Americans Affected by Probable Directed Energy Attacks & Develop Unified Government Response

Senators introduce bill to push White House on 'Havana syndrome' investigation

POLITICO, 2021-08-03