Disclaimer: All individuals are considered legally innocent until they are proven guilty in a court of law.
On February 19, 2020, less than a month after the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) declared Covid-19 a public health emergency, the respected medical journal The Lancet published a “Statement in support of the scientists, public health professionals, and medical professionals of China combatting COVID-19” by Dr. Peter Daszak and others. The point was to debunk the so-called “lab-leak theory.”
The key sentence in this statement was:
On June 9, 2020, several months after then-President Donald J. Trump invoked other emergency authorities, the same Peter Daszak who coauthored the Lancet statement authored an article for UK’s The Guardian in which he claimed that Covid-19 “wasn’t created in a lab.”
Moreover, he used the term “conspiracy theorist” again. He said anyone who suggested such an idea was a “conspiracy theorist” who we should “ignore.”
Daszak was presented as an authority. He knew something, The Guardian told us, because he was speaking in his capacity as “president of EcoHealth Alliance, a non-profit dedicated to analysing and preventing pandemics.”
On January 12, 2022, Dr. Andrew Huff issued a public statement (on Twitter) in which he claimed that “in 2015, Dr. Peter Daszak stopped me as we were leaving work late at night, and asked me if he should work with the CIA….Over the next 2 months he gave me updates on 3 separate occasions about his work with the CIA.”
On January 14, Dr. Huff issued another Tweet saying: “Peter Dazak (sic) told me that he was working with the CIA.”
This immediately struck me as implausible because the CIA essentially tells job applicants to keep their mouths shut about the fact that they are considering a career with “the Agency.” It seems that the same rules would apply to people who actually partner with them.
Huff’s pinned Tweet from January 12 says that the intelligence community (IC) has been harassing him and that he is pursuing legal action.
Dr. Huff has been very vocal about Covid-19 generally, calling it
If Huff is telling the truth about Dr. Daszak, and Daszak was working for the CIA as Huff claims, one has to question whether Daszak’s article was an attempt to stop the truth about Covid-19 from coming out.
For one thing the CIA is well-known for its efforts to control mainstream media narratives under the program “Operation Mockingbird.”
For another, a 1967 CIA memo refers to countering “conspiracy theorists” (there’s that term again) who might doubt the actions of the Warren Commission, which was investigating President Kennedy’s assassination. (A previous CIA director was one of the members of the Commission.) People still suspect that the CIA itself was responsible because, as David Swanson put it, “Kennedy was getting in the way.”
Whether he was CIA or not, Dr. Daszak had an interest in the topic he was commenting about. In 2014, his company, EcoHealth, received a grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), then headed by Dr. Francis Collins, to “study the risk of the future emergence of coronaviruses from bats.”
Daszak’s EcoHealth alliance received $3.7 million in grant funding before the project was cancelled in April 2020. Of that amount he “distributed nearly $600,000 of that total to China’s Wuhan Institute of Virology, a collaborator on the project, pre-approved by NIH.”
In October 2020, Dr. Fauci and Dr. Francis Collins, then the head of NIH, colluded to destroy an alternative plan for dealing with Covid-19 that had been presented to the Secretary of HHS. The way to do it, said Dr. Collins, was to issue “a quick and devastating published take down [sic] of its premises.”
Dr. Collins called the epidemiologists “fringe,” which is similar to the term “conspiracy theorists” in that he was conveying the approach for discrediting them: simply to say that they were wackos whose suggestions were beyond consideration.
Dr. Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), one of the research institutes of the NIH, was directly involved in Covid-19 research.
On April 4, 2021, The Daily Caller reported that Dr. Fauci thwarted appropriate review by the NIH board created to oversee funding of research “that intentionally makes pathogens more deadly or transmissible.” Gain of function research does exactly that.
“The P3CO Review Framework was created in 2017 after a three-year pause on government funding of research that intentionally makes pathogens more deadly or transmissible. An NIH grant that involved the modification of bat-based coronaviruses and the transfer of $600,000 to the Wuhan Institute of Virology prior to the pandemic bypassed P3CO review because the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, led by Anthony Fauci, didn’t flag the project for review.”Andrew Kerr, “US Grant To Wuhan Lab To Enhance Bat-Based Coronaviruses Was Never Scrutinized By HHS Review Board, NIH Says,” The Daily Caller News Foundation, April 4, 2021
Publicly, Dr. Fauci has insisted that the Wuhan research NIH funded to “enhance bat-based coronaviruses” was not what it actually was. The NIAID spoke to The Daily Caller:
“the NIH subagency that awarded the grant to the nonprofit group EcoHealth Alliance to study Chinese bat coronaviruses opted against forwarding it to the P3CO committee, an NIH spokesperson told the Daily Caller News Foundation, meaning the research received federal funding without an independent review by the HHS board.
“….An NIH spokesperson said its subagency did not flag the EcoHealth grant for independent review by the HHS review committee. ‘After careful review of the grant, NIAID determined research in the grant was not gain-of-function research because it did not involve the enhancement of the pathogenicity or transmissibility of the viruses studied,‘ the spokesperson told the DCNF.”
Looking at the grant, however, it states clearly that the researchers will do “in vitro and in vivo infection experiments.”
“Aim 3. In vitro and in vivo characterization of SARSr-CoV spillover risk, coupled with spatial and phylogenetic analyses to identify the regions and viruses of public health concern. We will use S protein sequence data, infectious clone technology, in vitro and in vivo infection experiments and analysis of receptor binding to test the hypothesis that % divergence thresholds in S protein sequences predict spillover potential. We will combine these data with bat host distribution, viral diversity and phylogeny, human survey of risk behaviors and illness, and serology to identify SARSr-CoV spillover risk hotspots across southern China. Together these data and analyses will be critical for the future development of public health interventions and enhanced surveillance to prevent the re-emergence of SARS or the emergence of a novel SARSr-CoV.
NIH classified Daszak’s grant under “biodefense” and “infectious diseases” among other categories.
On July 20, 2021, Senator (Dr.) Rand Paul confronted Dr. Fauci about whether he had lied in previous testimony (May 11, 2021), in which he denied that the NIH had engaged in gain of function research.
Clearly NIH had, and not only had they done it, but Dr. Fauci had also circumvented the NIH’s built-in protections against doing so, giving the money to Dr. Peter Daszak, who engaged in a propaganda campaign to silence anyone claiming that the infection had leaked out of the Chinese lab he himself had paid.
Senator (Dr.) Paul: “Dr. Fauci, knowing that it is a crime to lie to Congress, do you wish to retract your statement of May 11 where you claimed that the NIH never funded gain-of-function research in Wuhan?”
Dr. Fauci: “Senator Paul, I have never lied before the Congress, and I do not retract that statement….Senator Paul, you do not know what you are talking about, quite frankly.”CNBC (video clip), “Dr. Anthony Fauci to Sen. Rand Paul at hearing: You do not know what you’re talking about,” July 20, 2021
Recall Dr. Daszak’s two articles denying the lab leak, one in February 2020 and one in June 2020.
On July 30, 2021, The Daily Caller linked to a previously redacted email that shed light on the inappropriately close relationship between Dr. Fauci and Dr. Daszak.
On April 18, 2020, Dr. Daszak thanked Dr. Fauci “on behalf of our staff and collaborators, for publicly standing up and stating that the scientific evidence supports a natural origin for COVID-19 from a bat-to-human spillover, not a lab release from the Wuhan Institute of Virology.”
A day later, Dr. Fauci replied: “Many thanks for your kind note.”
Of course, Dr. Fauci could not realistically investigate the alternative, as it was his fault the grant was dispensed.
(Frankly, it was President Trump who gave him a leading role in the Covid-19 response to begin with.)
But the simplest explanation is usually the one that makes the most sense. Given what we know, which of the following two conclusions is most believable?
- Option 1: Bats suddenly randomly transmitted a deadly worldwide pandemic to human beings.
- Option 2: Researchers studying the risk of bat-to-human transmission, a series of experiments for which the oversight party evaded the institutional review board, failed to secure the virus and so it leaked out to the public (which is the whole reason for institutional controls in the first place).
The Biden administration has commissioned an investigation of the origin of the virus.
By August 27, 2021, the “lab leak” theory was not proven, but at least one intelligence agency supported it.
Certainly serious scientists — not conspiracy theorists in the least — took the possibility seriously.
But at the end of the day, the most important part of the Covid-19 pandemic is not the disease itself. Science will undoubtedly cure it, if the cure does not exist already.
What matters is the public narrative concerning the disease, and the way in which criminals have manipulated the story for their own financial gain and personal power.
That is a story as yet left unfinished.
As of this writing (January 16, 2022), 850,368 people in the United States have died from Covid-19. We can reasonably surmise that regardless of the role that China played, key people responsible for this incalculable loss have not been held accountable by, or are employed by, the U.S. government.
Whether we have the fortitude to prosecute them for any crimes they have committed remains to be seen.
By Dr. Dannielle (Dossy) Blumenthal. All opinions are the author’s own. Public domain.