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COVID Origin: Lab Leak or From Nature (Video, Transcript)

Posted by FactReal on March 7, 2023

Former New York Times science writer explained in great detail the 2 theories of COVID origins in his May 2021 article:

‘The origin of COVID: Did people or nature open Pandora’s box at Wuhan?’ (Archive)
By Nicholas Wade (May 5, 2021)

Wade’s goal is for readers to decide: We wanted to “provide readers with the evidence to make their own judgments.” He sorted the scientific facts, named names, provided links to data, exposed conflict of interests and connections.

There are two main theories about COVID-19 origin:
1. Natural emergence: “that it jumped naturally from wildlife to people.” This theory is favored by Fauci and the leftist media.
2. Wuhan lab leak: “that the virus was under study in a lab, from which it escaped.”
“It matters a great deal which is the case if we hope to prevent a second such occurrence,” noted Nicholas Wade.

Wade also analyzed two letters/articles written by scientists to push the theory of “natural emergence”:  (These virologists received grant money from Fauci’s NIH.)
“From early on, public and media perceptions were shaped in favor of the natural emergence scenario by strong statements from two scientific groups. These statements were not at first examined as critically as they should have been,” wrote Wade.

– Letter #1: The Lancet letter

“We stand together to strongly condemn conspiracy theories suggesting that COVID-19 does not have a natural origin,” a group of virologists and others wrote in the Lancet on February 19, 2020, when it was really far too soon for anyone to be sure what had happened. Scientists “overwhelmingly conclude that this coronavirus originated in wildlife,” they said, with a stirring rallying call for readers to stand with Chinese colleagues on the frontline of fighting the disease.

– Letter #2: The Andersen group:

A second statement that had enormous influence in shaping public attitudes was a letter (in other words an opinion piece, not a scientific article) published on 17 March 2020 in the journal Nature Medicine. Its authors were a group of virologists led by Kristian G. Andersen of the Scripps Research Institute. “Our analyses clearly show that SARS-CoV-2 is not a laboratory construct or a purposefully manipulated virus,” the five virologists declared in the second paragraph of their letter.

Unfortunately, this was another case of poor science, in the sense defined above. (…) Andersen and his colleagues were assuring their readers of something they could not know.

Mark Levin read sections of Wade’s article during his Sunday TV show, Life, Liberty & Levin: (March 5, 2023)
Video links: YouTube | Rumble

Mark Levin: This is the biggest scandal in American history, if not one of the biggest scandals in medical and scientific history

RUSH TRANSCRIPT [Emphasis added]

MARK LEVIN: Have you noticed, I’d say the last three, four or five years, the level of incompetence of the ruling class and the amount of cover up and censorship and lies that take place, they want more and more power centralized in Washington, DC. They want a say over every aspect of your life, and then when it comes to them actually doing their duties, they won’t do them.

And probably the greatest source for this kind of misdirection and incompetence is the American media. I mean, Russia collusion. They handed up Pulitzer Prizes like lollipops. The problem was there was no Russia collusion. The media pushing government propaganda about masks and now we have thorough studies that say masks have no consequence. Or lockdowns and shutdowns that destroyed people’s lives, their businesses, their home lives and so forth. Now, we know lockdowns didn’t do a damn thing.

And we could go on and on and on. What about natural immunity? We had experts from Stanford and Rockefeller College and Oxford and Yale who said, natural immunity is what we need. The elderly and those who have other kind of serious issues, medically, perhaps they should have vaccines, but we don’t need vaccines for the entire country. It didn’t matter.

Now, what about the origin of this virus? Of the COVID virus?

This to me is one of the biggest scandal in American history, if not one of the biggest scandals in medical and scientific history.

There was an entire propaganda campaign led by CNN, MSNBC, The New York Times, The Washington Post, CBS, NBC, ABC. The only major network that dared to question this was FOX. Just as FOX questioned and people on FOX, Russia collusion; just as folks here questioned masks; just as folks here questioned lockdowns, and we happened to be right.

The news operation in FOX is second to none, and those who provide opinions here really are top of the line as far as I’m concerned.

But let’s get into this. Let’s talk briefly about the story of the origin of COVID that killed millions of people worldwide at the hands of the Communist Party in China, that is still in cover-up mode, threatening anybody who dares to even raise this issue. And still, Joe Biden is in cover-up mode, the Manchurian President who is bought and paid for, in my humble opinion, by that government.

One of the first real scientific analyses of this was by Nicholas Wade. I had him here almost two years ago to discuss this and he became, in many quarters a pariah, even though this is a man who has been an investigative science writer for almost half a century and he wrote this 35-page, significant essay. [’The origin of COVID: Did people or nature open Pandora’s box at Wuhan?’ (Published on Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, May 5, 2021)]

Well, where did this virus come from? Was it manmade or was it natural? And he said, we don’t have the hard proof because they won’t let us in the lab, which would give us the hard proof. But he said the overwhelming evidence points to the lab.

And I want you to listen to this very, very carefully. [Wade] said:

WADE: The virus that caused the pandemic is known officially as SARS-CoV-2, but can be called SARS2 for short. As many people know, there are two main theories about its origin. One is that it jumped naturally from wildlife to people. The other is that the virus was under study in a lab from which it escaped. It matters a great deal which is the case if we hope to prevent a second such occurrence.

[Wade] goes on. He says:

WADE: … From early on, public and media perceptions were shaped in favor of the natural emergence scenario by strong statements from two scientific groups.

Remember those two letters?

WADE: These statements were not at first examined as critically as they should have been.

Now, who should have examined them? The media.

[Here Wade writes about the Lancet letter from virologists.]

[Wade] writes:

WADE: Contrary to the letter writers’ assertion [the first letter], the idea that the virus might have escaped from a lab invoked an accident, not a conspiracy. It surely needed to be explored, not rejected out of hand. A defining mark of good scientists is that they go to great pains to distinguish between what they know and what they don’t know. By this criterion, the signatories of the Lancet letter [that first letter] were behaving as poor scientists: They were assuring the public effects they could not know for sure were true.

It later turned out that The Lancet letter had been organized and drafted by Peter Dazsak, President of the EcoHealth Alliance of New York. Daszak’s organization funded coronavirus research at the Wuhan Institute of Virology. If the SARS2 virus had indeed escaped from research he funded, Daszak would be potentially culpable. This acute conflict of interest was not declared to the Lancet’s readers.

In other words, [Dazsak] helps organize this letter, gets several dozen people to sign it and doesn’t reveal that money was washed through his organization to go to the lab for gain-of-function research.

WADE: To the contrary, the letter concluded, “We declare no competing interests.”

Virologists like Daszak have much at stake in the assigning of blame for the pandemic. For 20 years, mostly beneath the public’s attention, they had been playing a dangerous game. In their laboratories they routinely created viruses more dangerous than those that exist in nature. They argued that they could do so safely and that by getting ahead of nature, they can predict and prevent natural “spillovers,” the cross-over viruses from an animal host to people. If SARS2 [the coronavirus] had indeed escaped from such a laboratory experiment, a savage blowback could be expected, and the storm of public indignation would affect virologists everywhere, not just in China.

And [Wade] goes on.

[Here Wade writes about the second letter by Kristian Andersen’s group in journal Nature Medicine ‘The proximal origin of SARS-CoV-2… in support of their declaration that the SARS2 [coronavirus] virus was clearly not manipulated.]

WADE: [The second letter by an American group], the Andersen group, grounded in nothing but two inconclusive speculations convinced the world’s press that SARS2 could not have escaped from a lab. A technical critique of the Andersen letter takes it down in harsher words. Science is supposedly a self-correcting community of experts who constantly check each other’s work. So, why didn’t other virologists point out that the Andersen group’s argument [that second letter] was full of absurdly large holes? Perhaps because in today’s universities speech can be very costly. Careers can be destroyed for stepping out of line. Any virologist who challenges the community’s declared view risks having his next grant application turned down by the panel of fellow virologists that advises the government grant distribution agency.

And they are mocked and humiliated by MSNBC hosts, by CNN hosts, by The New York Times, by The Washington Post. They are mocked and humiliated by CBS and NBC and ABC. The media in this country is a disaster. It just gives you the scarlet letter and then they don’t want a discussion and you see it throughout. You saw it with the Hunter Biden laptop and on and on and on with issue after issue after issue because they are ideologically driven, like never before.

[Wade] says:

WADE: Natural emergence [that is animal to man] was the media’s preferred theory until around February 2021 and the visit by a World Health Organization (WHO) commissioned to China. The commission’s composition and access were heavily controlled by the Chinese authorities. Its members, who included the ubiquitous Daszak, kept asserting before, during, and after their visit that the lab escape was extremely unlikely. But this was not quite the propaganda victory that Chinese authorities may have been hoping for. What became clear was that the Chinese had no evidence to offer the commission in support of the natural emergence theory.

[Here Wade writes about the “Bat Lady” or Shi Zheng-li.]

WADE: [B]y a strange twist in the story, [one of the top Chinese neurologists, the top virologist at the Wuhan lab] her work was funded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

Right, Mr. Fauci? By you.

WADE: [NIAID], a part of the US National Institutes of Health (NIH). And grant proposals that funded her work, which are a matter of public record, specify exactly what she planned to do with the money. The grants were assigned to the prime contractor, [this guy] Daszak of the EcoHealth Alliance, who subcontracted them to Shi [that is the expert, the virologist in China I was just talking about.]

So you can see these connections and you can see how in so many ways we were sold out as a people.

WADE: What this means, in non-technical terms is that Shi set out to create novel coronaviruses with the highest possible infectivity for human cells. (…) The methodical approach was designed to find the best combination of coronavirus backbone and spike protein for infecting human cells. (…)

It cannot yet be stated that Shi did or did not generate SARS2 in her lab because her records have been sealed, but it seems she was certainly on the right track to have done so. “It is clear that the Wuhan Institute of Virology was systematically constructing novel chimeric coronaviruses and was assessing their ability to infect human cells and human-ACE2-expressing mice,” says Richard H. Ebright, a molecular biologist at Rutgers University and leading expert on biosafety.

“It is also clear,” Ebright said, “that, depending on the constant genomic contexts chosen for analysis, this work could have produced SARS-CoV-2 or a proximal progenitor of SARS-CoV-2.” (…)

The lab escape scenario for the origin of the SARS2 virus [the coronavirus], as should by now be evident, is not mere hand-waving in the direction of the Wuhan Institute of Virology. It is a detailed proposal, based on the specific project being funded there by the NIAID.

You didn’t hear that from any of the media at the time. You did hear it here and on this network.

Required levels of lab safety. What are the required levels? For this, it is supposed to be what they called BSL4. What’s BSL4?

WADE: [BSL4] The most restrictive and designed for deadly pathogens like the Ebola virus.

Like the research on what would become the coronavirus. What happened? It was down at BSL Level 2.

WADE: ”The new lab has a serious shortage of appropriately trained technicians and investigators needed to safely operate this high-contaminant laboratory,” the inspectors wrote in a cable [to the State Department, ours, in 2018]. The real problem, however, was not the unsafe state of the Wuhan BSL4 lab but the fact that virologists worldwide don’t like working in BSL4 conditions. [They have to put all these suits on and these masks on and in that lab, they weren’t.]

“It’s clear that some or all of this work was being performed using a biosafety standard – biosafety level 2…

Even more.

WADE: Three people working at a BSL3 lab at the Institute fell sick within a week of each other with severe symptoms that required hospitalization. This was “the first known cluster that we’re aware of, of the victims of what we believe to be COVID-19.” Influenza could not completely be ruled out but seemed unlikely in the circumstances.

Well, of course it does. Now what about the natural side that had jumped from animals to man?

WADE: The uniform structure of SARS2 [the coronavirus] genomes gives no hint of any passage through an intermediate animal host, and no such host has been identified in nature.

Proponents of natural emergence [including in the media, including Fauci and our entire government] suggest that SARS2 incubated in a yet-to-be found human population before gaining its special properties. Or that it jumped to a host animal outside China.

All these conjectures are possible, but strained. Proponents of a lab leak have a simpler explanation. SARS2 was adapted to human cells from the start because it was grown in humanized mice or in lab cultures of human cells, just as described in Daszak’s grant proposal [originally].

So you can see that the weight of evidence is overwhelming for a lab leak and this is several years ago.

WADE: The direct-from-bats thesis is a chimera between the natural emergence and lab escape scenarios. It’s a possibility that can’t be dismissed. But against it are the facts…Neither the natural emergence nor the lab escape hypothesis can yet be ruled out. There is still no direct evidence for either. So no definitive conclusion can be reached.

That said, the available evidence leans more strongly in one direction than the other. Readers will form their own opinion. But it seems to me that proponents of lab escape can explain all the available facts about SARS2 considerably more easily than can those who favor natural emergence.

It’s documented that researchers at the Wuhan Institute of Virology were doing gain-of-function experiments designed to make coronaviruses infect human cells and humanized mice. This is exactly the kind of experiment from which a SARS2-like virus could have emerged. The researchers were not vaccinated against the viruses under study, and they were working in the minimal safety conditions of a BSL2 laboratory. So escape of a virus would not be at all surprising. In all of China, the pandemic broke out on the doorstep of the Wuhan institute. The virus was already well adapted to humans, as expected for a virus grown in humanized mice. It possessed an unusual enhancement, a furin cleavage site, which is not possessed by any other known SARS-related beta-coronavirus, and this site included a double arginine codon also unknown among beta-coronaviruses. What more evidence could you want, aside from the presently unobtainable lab records documenting SARS2’s creation?

And then he goes on to point out. What did the proponents of the natural emergence have? The natural emergence — nothing. Zero.

And now we have the Energy Department says, well, it probably came from this lab and now we have the FBI Director saying it did come from this lab.

And I want to remind you of something, if this leak hadn’t occurred, that is the leak of this information earlier this week, we still wouldn’t know about this.

This is a massive scandal and coverup by the federal government on behalf of the Communist Chinese.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – END OF RUSH TRANSCRIPT – – – – – – – – – – – – –


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