The sound does not cause harm as it is a byproduct and not the sound itself.
Describing the sound to 60 Minutes, the former US official, who did not want to be named, described it as: “this just loud sound just absolutely filled my room.”
Since 2016, around 200 American personnel have been struck with symptoms that vary from headaches, to ringing in the ears, as well as loss of hearing, memory, and balance. Some victims have even suffered long-term brain damage.
A study commissioned by the State Department said the most likely source is a pulse of radio frequency energy “directed” at US targets.
Officials said that these incidents have not only occurred in far-flung embassies, but two cases have also been found near the White House.
Another former homeland security and counter-terrorism advisor to former vice president Mike Pence, Olivia Troye said to 60 Minutes that she had experienced symptoms in the White House.
Ms Troye said in 2019 she was descending the stairs in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building beside the West Wing when she heard a piercing sound.
“But it was like this piercing feeling on the side of my head, it was like, I remember it was on the right side of my head and I got like, vertigo,” she said.
“I was unsteady, I was, I felt nauseous, I was somewhat disoriented, and I was just, I remember thinking, ‘OK you gotta—don’t fall down the stairs. You’ve gotta find your ground again and steady yourself’.”
“It was almost like I couldn’t really process. It was like a paralysing panic attack. I’ve never had that. I’ve never felt anything like that.”
“And so I– you know, I– I thought to myself, ‘I mean, do I have a brain tumour out of the blue? Is this what happens? Am I having a stroke?’”
Former Homeland Security chief of staff Miles Taylor said to 60 Minutes that he believed he was targeted in two mysterious incidents at his Washington home.
“Someone is trying to send us a message that they can strike blows against us and we can’t strike back,” he said.
“That line being crossed into the United States takes this in some ways just shy of the realm of warfare.”