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Tipsheet

The X-Files: Anti-Trump Staffer Thinks He Was Targeted with Havana Syndrome

AP Photo/Cedar Attanasio

The Ukraine war has taken over all media coverage but remember this little story about ‘Havana syndrome’? This mysterious illness has apparently afflicted scores of foreign service staff with symptoms ranging from memory loss, vertigo, and other neurological episodes. Is this an attack on our officials? It’s murky to say the least, one that easily goes down the conspiracy theory rabbit hole. The new twist prior to the Russian invasion of Ukraine was that former Trump official Miles Taylor, Mr. ‘Anonymous,’ claimed to have been targeted on American soil. Taylor is the one who wrote the New York Times op-ed that confirmed the existence of an anti-Trump deep state (via CBS News):

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Those "others" include Miles Taylor, also speaking for the first time. Taylor was deputy chief of staff and, later, chief of staff of the Trump administration Department of Homeland Security. 

Miles Taylor: Your job is to oversee the roughly 250,000 men and women of the department that conduct a range of missions from aviation security to border security to cybersecurity.

Taylor told us he was hit with the same symptoms described by Olivia Troye. 

Miles Taylor: It was late one night in April 2018. I'd just become deputy chief of staff of the department, taking on some additional sensitive issues at DHS, and woke up in my apartment that night, a row house on Capitol Hill, to a really strange sound.

The sound that woke Miles Taylor is a common experience reported by dozens of Americans stricken overseas.

Miles Taylor: It was sort of a chirping, somewhere between what you would think is a cricket or sort of a digital sound. I didn't know what it was, but it was enough to wake me up. What was really strange about it is, I went to the window, opened up my window, looked down at the street. And keep in mind, Scott, this is probably 3-- 3:30 in the morning and I see a white van. And the van's brake lights turned on, and it pulled off and it sped away.

Scott Pelley: How long did it last?

Miles Taylor: This whole episode only lasted about seven to ten minutes. 

Scott Pelley: How did you feel the next day?

Miles Taylor: Off. Off, not ready to go to work, you know, kinda wanting to take the day off, you know, sick. 

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There are plenty of officials in Washington who think this was an attack. Taylor is one of many to fall victim to this ‘Havana syndrome.’ So, what then? Who’s going to investigate? I have two individuals who can probably do the job:


(H/T Jerry Dunleavy)

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