Mind-Blowing: Do Wireless Radiation Health Effects Include ‘Immaculate Concussions’?

There are many, many adverse health effects associated with wireless exposures in the scientific literature, in this guest post Diane Craig asks, do wireless radiation health effects include ‘Immaculate Concussions’? And she shares 6 ways you can be proactive and protect yourself:

The non-profit Association for Diplomatic Studies and Training (ADST)’s mission is “Capturing, preserving, and sharing the experiences of America’s diplomats.” [1] From their Cold War diplomatic experiences, William Andreas Brown (WAB) and James Schumaker (JB) described the Moscow situation from 1953 to at least 1988 as:

‘The Great Microwave Scandal’


“When I first went to Moscow in 1966 … I fought tooth and nail to be assigned to study Russian…. This was the front line in the heart of the country of our adversaries….

“I have to tell you what a shock it was in about 1972 or 1973 to wake up to the great microwave scandal …. [F]or years we had been bombarded by microwave apparatuses.” [2] [emphasis added]


“For years, it had been known that the Soviets had been irradiating the [U S Embassy] Chancery with low level non-ionizing radiation. In fact, microwave bombardment [began] back in 1953.” [3] [emphasis added]


“I remember being one of a small group of officers [who] … raised our voices in despair, dissent, and so forth….” [2]


“The…microwave problem had been kept under wraps…, first because no one knew that there might be health consequences, and later, according to unconfirmed reports, because Henry Kissinger wanted to avoid damaging chances for détente. When Ambassador Stoessel…learned about the problem, he threatened to resign unless the Embassy community was told. As a result, the microwave story was finally made public in a press conference….” [3]


“We felt betrayed.” [2]


“Some thought that the microwaves were used by the Soviets to activate the numerous listening devices…. Others believed that they were a jamming signal…. Still others thought that the Soviets, who apparently knew a lot more about microwaves than we did, were using them to affect the mental states of Embassy employees.” [3] [emphasis added]


“Unbeknownst to us, the Department of State was testing our blood to see what, if anything had happened to us as a result of the microwave radiation….

“There was a story circulating that a former leader of the Marine Security Guard detachment in Moscow…had filed a suit against the State Department and that this suit had been settled out of court for alleged damage to one or more of his children….

“[By] 1977, this situation…affected staff morale…[but] we had meters to measure microwave emanations.

“In the interval something like summer screens had been installed on the windows. I remember once gathering a group of officers with this meter and showing them the effect of taking the screen off. The needle on the meter jumped noticeably. Then we put the screen back on the outer window….

“When we did this, the needle on the meter dropped down. Not all the way….” [2]


“Periodically, I would see Soviet technicians standing side by side with American techs on the upper floors of the Chancery. They were measuring ambient levels of microwave radiation. Naturally, the Soviet equipment didn’t find anything, while ours did. I thought it was funny at the time….” [3]


“I had seen studies by Soviet scientists in an entirely different field which highlighted the deleterious effects of microwave emissions, such as emissions from high-voltage electric wires.

“It wasn’t long before another scare broke. It turned out that the studies of our blood samples over the years of people who had served in Moscow showed that something like six months after a person arrived in Moscow, his or her white blood counts rose significantly. Some people speculated that this had to do with the water
supply.” [2] [emphasis added]


“A study of the Embassy community by Johns Hopkins in 1978 purportedly proved that in actuality Embassy personnel were on average healthier than ordinary Americans…. [T]he study did not recognize the fact that Americans permitted to go out to Moscow were already pre-selected to have ‘1’ [health] clearances…and so naturally the Embassy population would be much healthier than an average group of ordinary Americans.” [3]


“[O]ne day…a visiting technician from the State Department came with equipment and said,…’[T]wo microwave radiation] beams intersect right here at your desk. So I’d like to set this up.’” [2]


“The clincher for many Moscow staffers was the unusual incidence of illness on the part of American Ambassadors stationed in Moscow. An article by Paul Brodeur in the December 20, 1976 issue of New Yorker and an earlier article in Time Magazine reported that not only had two recent American Ambassadors to Moscow died of cancer (Llewellyn “Tommy” Thompson and Charles Chip” Bohlen), then-Ambassador Walter Stoessel was suffering from a severe blood disorder (Ambassador Stoessel, who was universally admired, eventually died of leukemia in 1986)….” [3] [emphasis added]


“It was difficult to persuade a middle ranking senior officer of superior quality to come back to Moscow…. I myself had not volunteered to go back to Moscow. However, once there, I threw myself into the job.” [2]

Note: A New York Times 1979 article reported that “[t]he Soviet Union has stopped bombarding the American Embassy with microwaves.” [4] However…


[T]he microwaving of the Embassy continued until at least 1988. Over the years, thousands of Americans were exposed.” [3] [emphasis added]

“Shortly after my tour was over, …Med informed me in late 1979 that my own white cell count was much higher than normal…. In 1985, …a bone marrow test…confirmed that I had Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (CLL) stage zero, but that chemotherapy was not advisable, since I had no symptoms and the cure would be worse than the disease….

“Most patients progressed slowly to Stage Four, and survived on average only a few years. The mortality rate 20 years out was close to 100 percent.

“I determined to fight the disease as best I could by leading a healthy lifestyle, although, paradoxically, I then volunteered for a high-risk assignment…[p]erhaps…since I didn’t have very long to live anyway…. State Medical…downgraded me to a “2” Medical clearance, but didn’t stop me from going overseas, mainly because the jobs I was volunteering for often had no takers.” [3]

My question: Why weren’t 1947 Nuremberg Code provisions that prohibit medical experiments on humans invoked, given the Cold War Moscow diplomats’ situation? Perhaps détente negotiations were one reason.

Another possible contributing factor may have been that, according to the ADST, “The level of [Soviet] microwaves was actually lower than what was considered safe in the U.S. at the time.” [2] [emphasis added]

Wireless transmissions allowed in the United States today are greater than those allowed in Russia. Hmmm…

antenna wireless radiation

Because American-allowed levels also were higher back then, did United States authorities decide that the Soviets’ embassy-aimed microwaves meant no harm? Here's what you need to know about microwave oven radiation.

The Consequences of “Too many white blood cells”

A character in an Ann Patchett novel, when asked how people die, replies, “Too many white blood cells….” [5] These five words sent my husband and me on an internet search for supporting science. At pubmed.gov [6] we found a 2007 research study [7] that concludes:

“White blood cell (WBC) count is a marker of systemic inflammation, and elevated WBC count is associated with all-cause as well as cancer, cerebrovascular, and cardiovascular mortality.” [7]

In other words, an elevated white blood cell count is associated with deaths, whether from chronic lymphocytic leukemia , other cancers, strokes, heart attacks, or other causes.

This may not have been known during the Cold War, but it’s been known for 14 years now.

Unlike many, James Schumaker didn’t die from CLL. His WBC stayed high for ten years. During the next ten, it declined. He reported,

“By 1999, my CLL was in remission…. I have often wondered how many others faced the same medical issues I did over the past few decades. Perhaps another, independent study of the problem is warranted. I would certainly support such a proposal.” [3]

Independent studies could determine, for the thousands of the Moscow Cold War workers who were exposed to microwaves, (1) how many then or soon afterwards developed high white blood cell counts, and (2) how many died earlier than longevity statistics would have predicted for them. Such studies would take time, but knowing the answers might help researchers and policy makers in the future, especially considering that…

‘The Great Microwave Scandal’ Continues, on Steroids

There have been new reports of Americans, in Cuba, China and elsewhere in the world including Washington DC, being injured by what appear to be new and apparently-Russian- originated microwave exposures.

Some online articles used the words “immaculate concussions” to describe what was happening (for one example, see reference [8]).

The conclusion of a 2018 research study stated this differently:

“Among US government personnel in Havana, Cuba, with potential exposure to directional phenomena, compared with healthy controls, advanced brain magnetic resonance imaging revealed significant differences in whole brain white matter volume, regional gray and white matter volumes, cerebellar tissue microstructural integrity, and functional connectivity in the auditory and visuospatial subnetworks but not in the executive control subnetwork. The clinical importance of these differences is uncertain and may require further study.” [9]

From my non-expert, non-medical perspective, all these words mean the same thing: that the government workers had injuries consistent with concussions, although none of them had recently fallen from trees or been in car accidents.

What’s being done about all this?

An October 2020 Foreign Policy Explainer article tells us that a National Academy of Sciences group met in spring 2020 and reported to the State Department in August 2020. [10]

A May 2021 New Yorker article adds that the chairman of this group briefed American officials in December 2020 and that there have been additional incidents, one involving a child. [11]

Peacetime Deployment of Manmade Microwave Radiation Is Scary – Are There Things We Can Do?

As always, we can be proactive:

(1). Practice Self Care – By Making Choices

We can start by sitting down and taking a few deep, slow breaths. If we extend this quiet time, we can use it for prayer or meditation. If we exercise our imaginations, we can visualize successful outcomes for all our worries, microwave radiation and otherwise. Prayer, meditation, visualization and creativity are not necessary for life, but breathing is. And slow, deep breathing calms the fast-and-shallow breathes that feed our stress.

(2). Educate – Medical Experiments on Humans Have Been Forbidden Since 1947

Quoting from The National Museum of Auschwitz-Birkenau’s summary,

“Josef Mengele, German physician and SS captain…was the most prominent of a group of Nazi doctors who conducted medical experiments that often caused great harm or death to the prisoners. In November 1943 Mengele became “Chief Camp Physician” of Auschwitz II (Birkenau).” [12]

But Mengele was only one of about 30 doctors at Auschwitz. He was under the charge of Dr. Eduard Wirths, another SS Captain who was the garrison physician. [12] There were many more….

The Nuremberg IMT Trial

Many of Germany’s leaders committed suicide after the war. Twenty-two who didn’t were tried by an International Military Tribunal (IMT) in Nuremberg, Germany. The judges were from Great Britain, France, the Soviet Union, and the United States.

“[The charges] under Article 6 of the IMT's Charter [were] for the following crimes:
(1) Conspiracy to commit charges 2, 3, and 4, which are listed here;
(2) crimes against peace— defined as participation in the planning and waging of a
war of aggression in violation of numerous international treaties;
(3) war crimes—defined as violations of the internationally agreed upon rules for
waging war; and
(4) crimes against humanity—”namely, murder, extermination, enslavement,
deportation, and other inhumane acts committed against any civilian population, before or during the war; or persecution on political, racial, or religious grounds in execution of or in connection with any crime within the jurisdiction of the Tribunal, whether or not in violation of domestic law of the country where perpetrated.” [13] [emphasis added]

After the IMT trial, the United States tried “high-level officials of the German government, military, and SS as well as medical professionals and leading industrialists.” [13]

199 were tried (22 by the IMT)
61 were convicted (19 by the IMT)
37 of those convicted were sentenced to death (12 by the IMT) [13]

The Doctors’ Trials were the first of the United States’ 12 Nuremberg trials. [14] What’s known as the Nuremberg Code emerged from these trials.

The Nuremberg Code

According to a British Medical Journal introduction to the Nuremberg Code, “The judgment by the war crimes tribunal at Nuremberg laid down 10 standards to which physicians must conform when carrying out experiments on human subjects in a code that is now accepted worldwide.” [15]

Its ten precepts for “Permissible Medical Experiments” [19] begin with the standard, “The voluntary consent of the human subject is absolutely essential.” [15]

The Code’s standard #8 states that when a human is subject to an experiment, “The experiment should be conducted only by scientifically qualified persons.” [15]

The IMT Nuremberg trials acquitted three people. The nineteen convicted were: Hitler’s deputy Göring, Hitler’s (missing) adjutant, Nazi Party leader Hess, the head of Hitler Youth, military commanders, administrators charged with governing occupied territories, the head of forced labor allocation, an anti-semitic publisher, and three government ministers — a minister of economics, a minister of the interior, and armaments minister Albert Speer. [13]

And the language written into the Nuremberg Code makes it absolutely clear that the code itself doesn’t apply only to medical doctors.

(3). Develop Perspective – Albert’s Big Lie tells us why

During World War II, Albert Speer wasn’t just Hitler’s chief architect. His more important roles were as Hitler’s armaments minister and minister for armaments and war production. As a 2013 Smithsonian Magazine article demonstrates, he also was a consummate actor, a talent that remained unrecognized throughout his life. [16]

At Nuremberg, Speer was convicted of war and other crimes, but he avoided execution. Like Josef Mengele, he died much later of natural causes (Mengele in 1979 in South America [12]; and Speer in 1981 in England [16]).

Speer was imprisoned until 1966. In 1970, Speer’s Inside the Third Reich book was published, and he became wealthy.

In 2007, ~100 of his personal letters came to light. In one letter, Speer wrote, ““There is no doubt—I was present as Himmler announced on October 6 1943 that all Jews would be killed.” [16]

One lesson here is that truths from history, like scientific study results, can take a very long time to be acknowledged.

See this article on EMF Scientific Research.

pile of books studies

(4) Advocate for Safety and Common Sense – Let’s meet our needs for proofs (of safety, of insurance, of disability opt-out options) before new technologies are adopted.

Most of us aren’t in a position to do much about what foreign powers do to us; for that, we rely on our leaders.

What we can do is advocate for safety and common sense in domestic affairs.

With respect to wireless technologies, the telecommunications industry has not yet provided proof of safety, and government agencies and legislators haven’t required this. Proof of insurance also is lacking; my understanding is that Lloyd’s of London and others don’t insure cell phone carriers.

When proofs of safety, proofs of insurance and disability opt-out options are lacking before new technologies are adopted, subsequent new-technology-problems often are followed by lawsuits and lobbying.

For individuals, especially for individuals with disabilities, the funds needed to seek legal relief may be out of reach.

For corporations, lawsuits and lobbying are simply costs of doing business.

Lawsuits can take many years to be resolved. Companies who lobby for relief sometimes receive bailouts or immunity.

As I write this in June 2021, the United States federal government is considering the best ways to strengthen infrastructures. Meanwhile, wireless telecommunications company lobbyists in California are working to rush four bills through the state legislature, trying to change current rules in their favor.

Am I saying that the wireless telecommunications industry’s California actions are the same as Nazis committing crimes against humanity? No. I do think there’s a risk, though, that a rush to adopt new technologies without thinking things through could end up allowing crimes against humanity to happen.

(5) Support Solutions – We Need Sound Infrastructures

A week ago, Russians again made the news, for phishing attacks on a software company (SolarWinds) and through an email marketing company (Constant Contact) whose clients include the U S Agency for International Development. The hackers appear to be associated with SVR, the Russian intelligence service. [17]

We can incorporate this news with what we know about infrastructures that utilize FTTP, “Fiber to the Premises,” compared with those that rely on wireless connections.

In addition to reducing wireless radiation, FTTP provides more reliable and faster communication than wireless. FTTP has the added benefit of keeping communication networks more secure. In my opinion, these long-term, community benefits greatly outweigh short-term increased marginal costs of installing fiber optic cable rather than placing and maintaining wireless antennas, possibly every 500 feet or so. As legislative branches consider infrastructure upgrades, we can support FTTP use.

(6) Create change – With “Klaatu barada nikto”

In his childhood, my brother-in-law memorized the phrase, “Klaatu barada nikto.” He quoted these words from time to time throughout his life.

I thought I would never quote Wikipedia, but life always provides opportunities for change and exceptions. According to Wikipedia,

“'Klaatu barada nikto’ is a phrase that originated in the 1951 science fiction film The Day the Earth Stood Still. The humanoid alien protagonist of the film, Klaatu (Michael Rennie), instructs Helen Benson (Patricia Neal) that if any harm befalls him, she must say the phrase to the robot Gort (Lockard Martin).” [18]

At the film’s climax, Helen manages to utter the words.

“In response Gort relents from destroying the Earth and resurrects Klaatu from death….

“The phrase was never translated in the film and neither [screenwriter] Edmund North nor 20th Century Fox ever released an official translation.” [18]

“Klaatu barada nikto” reminds me to remember important lessons, because doing so might save the world.

What lessons do you think are important to remember?

Many thanks to Diane Craig for this guest post.

Headshot Diane CraigFor more than 30 years, Diane Craig has advocated for persons diagnosed with celiac disease. From 2013 to 2018, among other activities as a board member for the California non-profit Celiac Support Group, she helped draft a petition to the FDA to label gluten in drugs and wrote blog posts to help publicize research regarding the then-new concept of Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity.

Sources and Bibliography

[1] Association for Diplomatic Studies & Training. About ADST. At https://adst.org/what-is-adst/.
Accessed May 19, 2021.

[2] Brown WA (with introduction by Association for Diplomatic Studies & Training). War of the Waves: Combating Espionage in Embassy Moscow. Foreign Affairs Oral History Collection, Association for Diplomatic Studies and Training, Arlington, VA, www.adst.org. At https://adst.org/2013/09/microwaving-embassy-moscow/. Accessed May 16, 2021.

[3] Schumaker J (with introduction by Association for Diplomatic Studies & Training). Microwaving Embassy Moscow — Another Perspective. Foreign Affairs Oral History Collection, Association for Diplomatic Studies and Training, Arlington, VA, www.adst.org. At https://adst.org/2013/09/microwaving-embassy-moscow-another-perspective/. Accessed May 16, 2021.

[4] New York Times. Soviet Halts Microwaves Aimed at U.S. Embassy (a digitized version of a print article dated May 30, 1979, Section A, Page 5, from The Times’s print archive). At https://www.nytimes.com/1979/05/30/archives/soviet-halts-microwaves-aimed-at-us-embassy.html. Accessed May 16, 2021.

[5] Patchett A. (© 2019 by Ann Patchett). The Dutch House: A Novel. Hardcover, page 278. HarperCollins Publishers. Accessed May 30, 2021.

[6] The United States’ National Library of Medicine is part of the National Institutes of Health It contains “citations for biomedical literature from MEDLINE, life science journals, and online books”, at pubmed.gov or https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov. Accessed May 31, 2021.

[7] Ruggiero C, Metter EJ, Cherubini A, Maggio M, Sen R, Najjar SS, Windham GB, Ble A, Senin U, Ferrucci L. White blood cell count and mortality in the Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2007 May 8;49(18):1841-50. doi: 10.1016/j.jacc.2007.01.076. Epub 2007 Apr 23. PMID: 17481443; PMCID: PMC2646088. At https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17481443/. Accessed May 31, 2021.

[8] Ioffe J. The Mystery of the Immaculate Concussion. GQ Newsletter. October 19, 2020. © 2021 Condé Nast. At https://www.gq.com/story/cia-investigation-and-russian-microwave-attacks. Accessed May 22, 2021.

[9] Verma R, Swanson RL, Parker D, Ould Ismail AA, Shinohara RT, Alappatt JA, Doshi J, Davatzikos C, Gallaway M, Duda D, Chen HI, Kim JJ, Gur RC, Wolf RL, Grady MS, Hampton S, Diaz-Arrastia R, Smith DH. Neuroimaging Findings in US Government Personnel With Possible Exposure to Directional Phenomena in Havana, Cuba. JAMA. 2019 Jul 23;322(4):336-347. doi:10.1001/jama.2019.9269. PMID: 31334794; PMCID: PMC6652163. Accessed May 31, 2021.

[10] Mackinnon A (a national security and intelligence reporter at Foreign Policy), and Gramer R (a diplomacy and national security reporter at Foreign Policy). What’s Behind the Mysterious Illness of U.S. Diplomats and Spies? Whatever’s causing it, all signs point to Moscow. Foreign Policy Explainer. October 21, 2020. At https://foreignpolicy.com/2020/10/21/whats-behind-mysterious-illness-us-diplomats-spies-cuba-china-russia-microwave-attack/. @2021 The Slate Group. Accessed May 22, 2021.

[11] Entous A. Annals of Espionage: Stealth Mode. The New Yorker. May 31, 2021, pages 18-22. © 2021 Condé Nast. Accessed May 31, 2021.

[12] United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. Josef Mengele. At https://encyclopedia.ushmm.org/content/en/article/josef-mengele. Accessed May 31, 2021.

[13] For details about the Doctors’ Trials, see: E Shuster, Ph.D. Fifty years later: The Significance of the Nuremberg Code. N Engl J Med 1997; 337:1436-1440. DOI: 10.1056/NEJM199711133372006. November 13, 1997. At https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJM199711133372006. Accessed May 31, 2021.

[14] United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. Nuremberg Trials. At https:// encyclopedia.ushmm.org/content/en/article/the-nuremberg-trials. Accessed May 31, 2021. https://encyclopedia.ushmm.org/content/en/article/the-nuremberg-trials. Accessed May 31, 2021.

[15] British Medical Journal. Introduction, plus The Nuremberg Code (1947). British Medical Journal No 7070 Volume 313: Page 1448. December 7, 1996. At https://media.tghn.org/medialibrary/2011/04/BMJ_No_7070_Volume_313_The_Nuremberg_Code.pdf. Accessed May 31, 2021.

[16] G King. The Candor and Lies of Nazi Officer Albert Speer. Smithsonian Magazine. January 8, 2013. At SmithsonianMag.com, https://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/the-candor-and-lies-of-nazi-officer-albert-speer-324737/. Accessed May 29, 2021.

[17] D Temple-Raston. What Microsoft Officials Know About Russia's Phishing Hack Targeting USAID. National Public Radio, Heard on All Things Considered. May 28, 2021. At https://www.npr.org/2021/05/28/1001367629/russian-hackers-launched-a-new-supply-chain-hack-this-time-they-phished. Accessed May 29, 2021.

[18] Wikipedia contributors. Klaatu barada nikto. In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. At https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Klaatu_barada_nikto&oldid=1025588866. Accessed May 28, 2021.

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