In January 2021, after months of political tension and red tape, a 10-person team from the World Health Organization arrived in Wuhan, China, to investigate the origins of SARS-CoV-2, the virus responsible. of COVID-19.1 Wuhan is known as the epicenter of the global pandemic, and arguably the most important research on COVID-19, aside from finding a cure, is how the pandemic began.
There are currently two such investigations underway – one by the WHO and another by The Lancet’s COVID-19 Commission.2 – but both are essentially “bogus” because they are riddled with conflicts of interest.
Namely, Peter Daszak, president of the EcoHealth Alliance, is one of those two investigations, although he works closely with the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV) – the lab in question which may have disclosed the virus – and dozens of others on controversial topics. research on function gain, which involves the manipulation of pathogens, including coronaviruses, to make them more infectious or deadly.
Daszak told The Associated Press in November 2020 that SARS-CoV-2 could have passed from a wildlife poacher to a trader who brought him to Wuhan.3 He has also openly and repeatedly dismissed the possibility that the pandemic was the result of a lab leak.4
WHO has no plan to investigate possible lab leaks
Will the WHO team fully investigate WIV and its potential role in COVID-19? A scientific audit and a review of safety measures would appear to be routine activity, according to Mark Woolhouse, an epidemiologist at the University of Edinburgh who spoke to the Associated Press.5
But, the AP noted, “according to the agenda published by the WHO6 for its research on the origins, there are no plans to assess whether there could have been an accidental release of the coronavirus at the Wuhan laboratory. Going further, GM Watch reported that Daszak “had already poured cold water on calls for a forensic investigation”:seven
“A Science article quotes him as saying, ‘Some of the most anti-Chinese rhetoric that there is, about, we have to go into the lab and watch video cameras, that sort of thing is not. realistic, that is not what is happening. ‘8
This prompted Rutgers’ Richard Ebright to comment: “Daszak’s claim that calls for a thorough and credible investigation, as opposed to a superficial and conflict-torn investigation, is’ anti-China rhetoric ‘is nonsense. selfish.9
Although the Chinese government has already approved the WHO 10-member investigation team, some were initially denied entry to Beijing, prompting the WHO to issue a ‘rare’ criticism . Yet their “investigation” centers on reports from Chinese scientists rather than a true independent investigation. As the Wall Street Journal reported:ten
“Since Chinese authorities have been slow to release information, have penalized scientists and doctors who shared clinical and genomic details of the novel coronavirus, and have since shown a keen interest in controlling the emergence narrative virus, it is not a promising foundation. for the WHO survey.
… Critics fear he lacks the expertise to conduct an investigation that examines the lab’s possible origins. Stanford University’s Dr David Relman, who raised the possibility early on that the virus may have leaked from a lab, told us:
“Based on the scarce information that has been shared publicly about the WHO survey, it does not appear that WHO has adequately represented the range of views and perspectives of key stakeholders or incorporated all the necessary forms of expertise. “
WHO investigator wants to do karaoke with Wuhan lab director
Another clue that the WHO investigation will not affect WIV is Daszak’s close ties to Shi Zhengli, Ph.D., the director of WIV’s Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases, also known as “Wife. bat”. She has been studying viruses transmitted by bats since 2004, including SARS-type coronaviruses.
According to the World Society of Virology, “one of his great contributions is to discover genetically diverse coronaviruses like SARS in bats with his international collaborators and to provide unequivocal evidence that bats are natural reservoirs of SARS-CoV.11
As Alexis Baden-Mayer, policy director of the Organic Consumers Association, reported, Daszak’s EcoHealth Alliance lists WIV and Wuhan University School of Public Health as contractors under an NIH grant from $ 3.7 million.12 titled “Understanding the risk of emergence of the bat coronavirus”.
EcoHealth Alliance also used millions of dollars from a sub-grant13,14,15 of the University of California at Davis to fund a gain-of-function experiment by Shi and his colleague Ralph Baric of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, involving the use of genetic engineering to create a “new virus similar to Bat SARS… which can jump directly from its bat hosts to humans. “
Now this is where it gets really interesting. According to Baden-Mayer in the Gain of Function research article previously linked above:
“The work, ‘A group of circulating SARS-like bat coronaviruses shows potential for human emergence,’16 published in Nature in 2015 during the NIH moratorium17 on gain-of-office research, was acquired because it was initiated before the moratorium… and because Shi and Baric’s request to continue their research during the moratorium was approved by the NIH.
As a condition of publication, Nature, like most scientific journals, requires18 authors must submit new DNA and RNA sequences to GenBank, the US National Center for Biotechnology’s information database. Yet the new SARS-like virus created by Shi and Baric has not been filed19 in GenBank until May 2020. “
In case there is any doubt about their close connection, The Sun,20 a British tabloid featured a conversation on Twitter in which Daszak “seems to be saying he’s looking forward to an alcohol karaoke party in a bat cave with Shi Zhengli,” GM Watch noted.21
Daszak tweets: “Looking forward to that special moment where we hit baiju and karaoke with Zhengli & Linfa [likely referring to Wang Linfa, aka ‘batman,’ another bat researcher and WIV’s chairman of scientific advisory22]. He adds, “Right now, a bat cave party just feels right to me !!”23
Daszak calls lab leak a ‘conspiracy theory’
Is it a coincidence that when SARS-CoV-2 first emerged in Wuhan, China, the EcoHealth Alliance was providing funding for WIV to collect and study novel bat coronaviruses – and now Daszak has been the main expert chosen by the mainstream media to explain the origin of the pandemic as being zoonotic in nature?24
You are the judge, but in November 2020, US Right to Know (USRTK), a nonprofit public health investigative group, reported that emails obtained through Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests prove that Daszak played a central role in the conspiracy to obscure the laboratory origin of SARS-CoV-2 by issuing a scientific statement in The Lancet condemning the investigations as “conspiracy theory.”25,26
Five other members of the Lancet Commission also signed the Lancet Declaration of February 18, 2020,27 which also calls into question their credibility. Meanwhile, a number of government officials gave credence to the lab’s origin theory, including U.S. Deputy National Security Advisor Matthew Pottinger, who in January 2021 said the escape theory laboratory was the most credible, based on a growing body of evidence.28
A fact sheet released by the US State Department on January 15, 2021 further calls on WHO investigators to access WIV records related to research on bats and other coronaviruses ahead of the COVID outbreak -19:29
“The US government has reason to believe that several WIV researchers fell ill in the fall of 2019, before the first identified case of the epidemic, with symptoms compatible with both COVID-19 and common seasonal illnesses .
This raises questions about the credibility of WIV principal investigator Shi Zhengli’s public claim that there was “no infection” among WIV staff and students from SARS-CoV-2 or SARS-related viruses. .
Information previously undisclosed in the fact sheet indicates that accidental laboratory infections have caused several previous virus outbreaks and the Chinese government prevented investigators and journalists to interview WIV researchers. Additionally, WIV researchers have conducted experiments involving the bat coronavirus RaTG13 – the closest known relative of SARS-CoV-2, with a similarity of 96.2% – since at least 2016.
Alina Chan, a molecular biologist at Harvard’s Broad Institute and MIT, has been outspoken about China’s apparent efforts to withhold information about the source of SARS-CoV-2.30 According to Chan, the database of viral pathogens in bats and mice, which had been managed by Shi, has been taken offline, limiting the ability of scientists and researchers to analyze the potential. origins of SARS-CoV-2.31
The US State Department’s fact sheet also states: “As part of a full investigation, they [WHO investigators] must have a full account of why the WIV modified and then deleted online records of its work with RaTG13 and other viruses. “32
Other reports claim that WIV was conducting research on mice humanized with a novel bat SARS coronavirus in 2019, and years earlier, a video was posted showing WIV scientists working with little to no protective gear while working with live viruses. According to GM Watch:33
“The Chinese report was intended to showcase the work of Shi Zhengli and his WIV team, but what stands out … is” a shocking disregard for safety when handling potentially infectious bats both in the wild and in the laboratory “. Because of this lax attitude, WIV bat researchers end up getting bitten and scratched by virus-laden bats, as the video clearly shows, which even shows a researcher’s arm swollen after a bat bite.
In view of the dire need for a thorough and independent investigation into a possible lab leak, many asked Daszak to leave the WHO investigative team,34 as evidence accumulates that a lab leak cannot be ruled out.
In an editorial published in the Journal of Human Security, Colin Butler of the Australian National University, a former WHO adviser who not only worked in China but also previously worked with Daszak, argued that there are “Striking” evidence of the COVID-19 leak. of a laboratory.35,36
If the theory is proven, concludes Butler, “then it should be taken as an equally powerful, if not frightening, signal that we are in danger, because of pride as much as ignorance.37 As for Daszak, Butler noted, “He probably sincerely believes in his work, but he built an empire around the idea that zoonoses [animal to human infections] are the most important thing in the world. “38