News Analysis Jan 16, 2021 4:57 PM EST

US State Department says evidence suggests COVID was released from Chinese virology lab

"The CCP’s deadly obsession with secrecy and control comes at the expense of public health in China and around the world," the State Department writes.

US State Department says evidence suggests COVID was released from Chinese virology lab
Libby Emmons Brooklyn, NY
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The US State Department on Friday released a Fact Sheet on the "Activity at the Wuhan Institute of Virology" (WIV). The sheet poses questions as the origins of the COVID-19 coronavirus, which emerged from the Chinese city of Wuhan sometime between late 2019 and early 2020 and went on to infect nearly 95 million people globally, with no clear end in sight. More than 2 million have died.

The State Department calls on the WIV to allow World Health Organization investigators access to their research records and "gain-of-function" work. This kind of work is when researchers make a virus more contagious so that they can study the infection in more kinds of cells. The WIV apparently pulled their online records of research into similar pathogens.

This indicates that the State Department has reason to believe that the virus was at least altered in a lab, and then likely accidentally released.

The State Department notes that the Chinese Communist Party, which control the flow of information with an authoritarian fist, has not been forthcoming about the origins of the virus. As such, the US asks for transparency as to the origins, and release, of the contagion that has horrifically disrupted the global economy. "The CCP’s deadly obsession with secrecy and control comes at the expense of public health in China and around the world," the State Department writes.

The State Department writes that there's reason to believe that WIV researchers became ill in the fall of 2019, and that claims made by WIV that there was "zero infection" among researchers was just untrue.

As backup for this line of, that researchers could have been the first to become infected well before the existence of the virus was made known outside of the WIV, the State Department says that "accidental infections in labs have caused several previous virus outbreaks in China and elsewhere."

New York Magazine also noticed that this has been the case multiple times, in their Jan. 4 cover story by Nicholson Baker "The Lab-Leak Hypothesis For decades, scientists have been hot-wiring viruses in hopes of preventing a pandemic, not causing one. But what if …?" Many instances of accidental infections, some resulting in death, are noted herein, and posited to have been the case at WIV.

International and American journalists were dismissed from China in March. The CCP's prevention of independent journalists, investigators, and global health authorities from conducting inquiries into the origins of the virus. "Any credible inquiry into the origin of the virus must include interviews with these researchers and a full accounting of their previously unreported illness," the State Department writes.

Additional concerns have to do with Beijing's "secrecy and non-disclosure" practices. Biological weapons development in China has long been of concern to the US. "Despite the WIV presenting itself as a civilian institution," the State Department writes, "the United States has determined that the WIV has collaborated on publications and secret projects with China’s military. The WIV has engaged in classified research, including laboratory animal experiments, on behalf of the Chinese military since at least 2017."

The origins of the coronavirus are still uncertain though it's been nearly a year since the WHO first recorded a case of the contagion. Investigations have been stifled by the CCP, and moralistic arguments from an American Democratic left that assumes that any investigation into those origins are in fact accusations has not helped matters.

Inquiries as to the origin of the virus have been heavily interfered with by political concerns. This has been especially true in the US. Any supposition that the virus was either intentionally or accidentally leaked from WIV, which has received substantial US funding, has been considered racist.

Instead, the position held by many on the left is that the illness had a solely natural derivation. This belief fits tidily within a framework of beliefs that paints humanity as a villain against nature, whose persistent incursion into the wilderness of our planet opens a Pandora's Box of potential destruction that could wipe out life on earth. This would be no more than our just desserts, according to the climate change crisis advocates who believe that human kind is the real contagion.

With this perspective in hand, it made sense to punish humanity for the outbreak by insisting that people had to sacrifice their loved ones to die alone, their businesses to fold, and their societies to crumble under the weight of our own sin. But what if this narrative we've been telling each other is actually untrue?

It's long since time to ask real questions, conduct decisive inquiry, and get substantive answers. This is not so much about holding those who are culpable to account for their actions, either intentional or more likely accidental, but to use the information to create safeguards so that this does not happen again.

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