For some reason, the Chinese laboratory failed to provide documents about safety and security measures.
Recently, we reported that a possible covid “patient zero” at the Wuhan Institute of Virology in (WIV) China was filmed handling laboratory samples without wearing any personal protective gear. The same video in that report also showed WIV scientists hunting for bat viruses with little protective gear.
About a month after this report (based on data obtained during an investigation by journalists Michael Shellenberger, Alex Gutentag, and Matt Taibbi), the Biden administration has suspended funding that was heading to the institute over its failure to provide adequate documentation about their practices.
The Department of Health and Human Services announced the suspension in a Monday letter to the lab, which mentioned efforts to attempt to debar the laboratory in the future.
A memo that was obtained by Bloomberg News stated that a previous review revealed that the Wuhan laboratory does not adequately follow federal regulations. The lab had also failed to send documents about their security and safety measures to American officials.
“This action will ensure the [Wuhan Institute of Virology] does not receive another dollar of federal funding,” an HHS spokesperson said, according to Bloomberg.
The move follows in the wake of a 10-page assessment from the Director of National Intelligence, which showed the various agencies are divided as to the origin of the pandemic.
The Department of Energy, which oversees biological research labs in the U.S., concluded with ‘low confidence’ in February the virus most likely came from a lab in Wuhan. The FBI concluded the same with moderate confidence.
The National Intelligence Council and four other agencies disagreed and stated the pandemic likely began naturally.
The CIA, meanwhile, is on the fence and has been unable to say with certainty how it started, given repeated blocks imposed by the Chinese authorities.
‘The Central Intelligence Agency and another agency remain unable to determine the precise origin of the COVID-19 pandemic, as both hypotheses rely on significant assumptions or face challenges with conflicting reporting,’ the report stated.
The WIV is a civilian research institute founded in the 1950s by the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS). Although the WIV is independent of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA), the IC assesses that WIV personnel have worked with scientists associated with the PLA on public health-related research and collaborated on biosafety and biosecurity projects.
Information available to the IC indicates that some of the research conducted by the PLA and WIV included work with several viruses, including coronaviruses, but no known viruses that could plausibly be a progenitor of SARS-CoV-2. For example, PLA researchers have used WIV laboratories for virology and vaccine-related work.
- Between 2017 and 2019, the WIV funded and some of its personnel conducted research projects to enhance China’s knowledge of pathogens and early disease warning capabilities for defensive and biosecurity needs of the military.
- Prior to collaborating on a vaccine for SARS-CoV-2, the WIV collaborated with the PLA on other vaccine and therapeutics relevant to
coronaviruses. The IC assesses that this work was intended for public health needs and that the coronaviruses known to be used were too distantly related to have led to the creation of SARS-CoV-2.
The Biden administration is known for its seeming unwavering support of China.
Is it possible to link this development to less than robust poll numbers? Asking for a friend….
An Echelon Insights poll of likely voters in battleground states found that 48 percent of them probably or definitely would vote for former President Donald Trump if the election were held now, compared with 41 percent who would vote for Biden.
Eleven percent were undecided.
Biden’s favorability among respondents in battleground states was just 40 percent, while Trump was at 43 percent.
Even within his own party, the president has problems.
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