COVID-19 czar Anthony Fauci has steadfastly denied that he helped fund gain-of-function research at China’s now-notorious Wuhan Institute of Virology. In recent testimony before Congress, he repeatedly denied ever doing so. But a new 900-page trove of information acquired through a Freedom of Information Act request shows that’s not true.
It’s a huge story. Unfortunately, the mainstream media have essentially ignored it. New York Times? The Washington “Democracy Dies In Darkness” Post? CNN? Sorry, couldn’t be bothered, even though a 2015 study clearly referred to such research taking place.
It took an aggressive, left-leaning online investigative reporting site, The Intercept, to do the Big Media’s work for it by digging up the FOIA material. The mountain of papers are damning, showing clearly that a nonprofit company, EcoHealth Group, channeled federal grants from the National Institute of Health and Fauci’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease to the Chinese government-run Wuhan Institute of Virology.
“The (U.S.) bat coronavirus grant provided EcoHealth Alliance with a total of $3.1 million, including $599,000 that the Wuhan Institute of Virology used in part to identify and alter bat coronaviruses likely to infect humans,” the Intercept reported.
“Alter bat coronaviruses” is the key phrase here, since it indicates gain-of-function experimentation, which even the Obama administration had tightly restricted.
Scientists with expertise in both viral research and government grant mechanisms call the latest evidence a smoking gun. A thread of tweets by Rutgers University molecular biologist Richard E. Enbright provides further scientific insight into what was going on.
“The documents make it clear that assertions by the NIH director, Francis Collins, and the NIAID director, Anthony Fauci, that the NIH did not support gain-of-function research or potential pandemic pathogen enhancement at WIV are untruthful,” Enbright wrote.
Broad Institute molecular biologist Alina Chan told The Intercept that the documents also make the lab-leak theory of the COVID-19 virus even more likely.
“In this proposal, they actually point out that they know how risky this work is. They keep talking about people potentially getting bitten – and they kept records of everyone who got bitten,” she said. “Does EcoHealth have those records? And if not, how can they possibly rule out a research-related accident?”
In case you’re wondering what this all means, funding “gain-of-function” basically gave China the tools to weaponize the COVID-19 virus. So if the COVID-19 virus in fact escaped from the Wuhan lab, either accidentally or intentionally, that means the U.S. in effect aided the Chinese government in infecting the world with a deadly virus.
Fauci has officially appeared before Congress a number of times. Not surprisingly, when asked, he has denied that the U.S. funded such research by China. As recently as July, he jousted with Kentucky Republican Sen. Rand Paul, himself a medical doctor, over whether Fauci lied or not about funding gain-of-function research. An indignant and visibly angry Fauci again denied it vehemently.
No shock that Paul now feels vindicated, and should.
“Surprise surprise – Fauci lied again,” Paul tweeted. “And I was right about his agency funding novel coronavirus research at Wuhan.”
Lest you think this is far-fetched, Fauci himself in the past has publicly supported gain-of-function research. He even wrote an op-ed pushing the idea in the Washington Post in 2011. (We wrote about much of this back in June in an editorial titled: “Fauci Is Starting To Look Guilty, Guilty, Guilty On ‘Gain Of Function.’”)
We wish this were all. But with an outbreak of the Delta version of the virus, and other versions (such as the South American “Mu” strain) apparently on the way, Fauci has shown himself to be incompetent at leading the U.S. medical response. His little COVID-19 game of “Simon Says,” using government power to order Americans around, has worn thin.
To be blunt, his lockdown and masking policies didn’t work. Not only did hundreds of thousands die from COVID-19, but millions of people lost their businesses and educational opportunities, suffered from lockdown-related obesity, anxiety and panic attacks, and watched as Fauci and others politicized debate over COVID-19 to divide Americans yet again.
The best we can say for Fauci is it could have been worse. If not for the wisdom and courage of GOP governors Ron DeSantis of Florida and Greg Abbott of Texas – whose states hold nearly 16% of total U.S. population, and who both defied senseless orders to mask up, socially isolate and lock down – the carnage caused by Fauci’s ignore-the-science policies would have been far worse.
We’ve had enough. So have the American people: A new Rasmussen Poll shows less than half of U.S. adults have a favorable opinion of Fauci after a year-and-a-half of bumbling. Incompetence is one thing, but perjury before Congress that covers up possible criminal behavior is quite another. At minimum, President Joe Biden should ask the now-disgraced Fauci to pack his bags. After nearly 53 years in Washington, D.C., as a bureaucrat, Fauci has worn out his welcome.
Time for Fauci to quit or be fired.
— Written by the I&I Editorial Board