A REPORT released by Republican lawmakers on the House Intelligence Committee Wednesday claims there is “overwhelming circumstantial evidence” to pin the emergence of Covid-19 came from China’s Wuhan Institute of Virology.
The report's central thesis was "to prevent or quickly mitigate future pandemics, it’s crucial for health experts and the U.S. Government to understand how the COVID-19 virus originated” and that such an international fact-finding mission so far is being “stymied by a lack of cooperation from the People’s Republic of China,” according to the report.
The report, spearheaded by Committee Ranking Member Devin Nunes,notes there remains “significant circumstantial evidence raises serious concerns that the COVID-19 outbreak may have been a leak from the Wuhan Institute of Virology," and first reported by the Washington Examiner.
The report highlighted how China has a checkered history with infections caused by research lab leaks, diplomatic cables from 2017 warning the Wuhan lab was “conducting dangerous research on coronaviruses… risking the accidental outbreak of a pandemic,” the Chinese military’s ties to the lab, “several researchers sickened with Covid-19 symptoms in the fall of 2019," and the evidence of China’s efforts to “cover up the true circumstances” of the outbreak.
The diplomatic cable revelation was first reported back in March.
"The cable was a warning shot,” an official acknowledged to the Washington Post.
"They were begging people to pay attention to what was going on."
One of the cable writers told the paper’s reporter John Rogin: "We were trying to warn that that lab was a serious danger.
"I have to admit, I thought it would be maybe a SARS-like outbreak again.
"If I knew it would turn out to be the greatest pandemic in human history, I would have made a bigger stink about it."
Wednesday's report attempted to poke holes on theories that the GOP congress members claim are light on facts to explain exactly how and where the devastating pandemic originated.
"By contrast, little circumstantial evidence has emerged to support the PRC’s claim that COVID-19 was a natural occurrence, having jumped from some other species to human” and blaming the Chinese for failing to “identify the original species that allegedly spread the virus to human, which is critical to their zooptic transfer theory.”
The report made mention of how Chinese authorities initially claimed the read of the coronavirus occurred at a “Wuhan wet market” before they say government scientists “publicly ruled out” that theory.
Other theories summarized in the report include how humans somehow became infected by the virus from horseshoe bat or “with an intermediary species such as pangolins.”
One of the most damning claims of the report suggest the US government along with academic institutions were actually funding efforts that may have created and ultimately released the disease in what is known as “Gain of Function” research at the Wuhan lab, which essentially “improves the ability of a pathogen to cause disease” in humans.
“At least some of this research was published even after the U.S. Government had paused these kinds of studies in the United States due to ethical concerns over their biowarfare applicability and their potential to accidentally unleash a pandemic … Given the Chinese government’s documented biological weapons program, it is difficult to understand why the U.S. Government permitted collaborative research at the WIV, which had a known Chinese military presence,” according to the report.
So far, Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, has denied there has been any funding tied between the National Institutes of Health and Gain of Function research at the Wuhan Institute of Virology.
In a tense exchange on earlier this month, Republican Sen. Rand Paul asked Dr. Fauci a series of questions about the Wuhan lab and American funding.
"Dr. Fauci, do you still support…NIH funding of the lab in Wuhan?"
Dr. Anthony Fauci responded: "Senator Paul, with all due respect, you are entirely and completely incorrect… that the NIH has ever and does not now fund gain of function research in the Wuhan Institute of Virology.”
A letter published last week that was signed by 18 scientists, made demands that more needs to be done to zero in on the Wuhan lab to determine once and for all if the coronavirus originated there.
“We must take hypotheses about both natural and laboratory spillovers seriously until we have sufficient data,” the letter reads.
EcoHealth Alliance received a grant worth least $3.7 million from 2014, according to the Washington Examiner.
He recently shot down the lab leak as potboiler fiction:
“It’s a good conspiracy theory,” Daszak told KHN.
“Foreigners designing a virus in a mysterious lab, a nefarious activity, and then the cloak of secrecy around China.”
Also the paper reported that Peter Daszak, who has ties with Chinese coronavirus scientists as part of the EcoHealth Alliance, bankrolled the Wuhan lab with $600,000 in NIH funding for bat coronavirus research.
The report is demanding more transparency to ward off a sequel of one of the most perilous outbreaks in modern history.
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