Vanity Fair, Wall Street Journal finally report on evidence supporting COVID lab-leak theory
June 15, 2021 (LifeSiteNews) — In a lengthy and intriguing read, Vanity Fair has done an incredible about-face in its reporting on COVID-19, detailing and revealing hidden investigations into the origins of the virus — in a tone that attempts to convey how they had always defended the view, not vilified those who proposed it through 2020. The article also makes casual and brief mention of startling details about the Wuhan Institute of Virology, and experiments conducted on mice, in order to test and create a new strain of the original SARS pathogen which would be readily adapted for maximum human contagion.
The article appeared online June 3, authored by investigative journalist Katherine Eban. Its length and details are impressive, recounting numerous details of U.S. State Department, World Health Organization, and Chinese investigations and communications surrounding the origins of COVID-19.
Crucially, the article focuses on what has been dubbed the lab-leak theory: the argument that COVID-19 did not accidentally pass from bats to humans at an animal market in Wuhan, but was the leak of a manufactured pathogen from the Wuhan Institute of Virology.
The piece reads like a thriller, detailing the determined investigations of data scientist Giles Demaneuf from New Zealand, who realized that something was peculiar about COVID almost as soon as it began to spread.
The article offers substantial evidence and support for the lab-leak theory, taking the tone adopted by Demaneuf, who dubbed the natural origin theory as “totally unscientific.” Eban notes how Demaneuf established a research team to investigate the origins of the virus, called the Decentralized Radical Autonomous Search Team Investigating COVID-19 (DRASTIC).
“At times, it seemed the only other people entertaining the lab-leak theory were crackpots or political hacks hoping to wield COVID-19 as a cudgel against China,” she wrote of the DRASTIC team. “With disreputable wing nuts on one side of them and scornful experts on the other, the DRASTIC researchers often felt as if they were on their own in the wilderness, working on the world’s most urgent mystery.”
“Throughout 2020, the notion that the novel coronavirus leaked from a lab was off-limits,” reads the subheading. “Those who dared to push for transparency say toxic politics and hidden agendas kept us in the dark.” This first statement is without doubt true. The second is not entirely true, however. For while Eban does indeed recount the political obstacles faced by those looking to uncover the origins of COVID-19, she completely avoids the immense, and somewhat more pervasive, role which has been played by the mainstream media in censoring any suggestion that the virus was not of natural origins.
What Vanity Fair fails to mention is how the magazine itself was prohibiting such investigations, acting as the very “scornful experts” mentioned in the article. For the entirety of last year, and even for much of 2021, anyone proposing the theory that COVID emerged from a lab, or the Wuhan Institute of Virology, was ridiculed, censored online and in the media, and characterized as spreading “false information.”
At the time, LifeSiteNews was one of the few media outlets reporting on the possibility of the lab-leak theory, with China expert Steven Mosher writing on the matter, and promptly being censored by Facebook for doing so. Vanity Fair itself also contributed to this culture of censorship, mocking LifeSiteNews, as well as comments made by Bishop Athanasius Schneider.
Yet this past editorial line seemingly bore no effect on Vanity Fair’s recent piece, in which it detailed, documented, and supported those elements of so called “misinformation” which it had previously ridiculed LifeSite for proposing.
Vanity Fair also blamed former President Donald Trump for the general media hostility to the lab-leak theory during last year, describing him as the “bomb-thrower-in-chief,” and mentioning that it was due to his support for the lab-leak theory which “poisoned the waters for anyone seeking an honest answer to the question of where COVID-19 came from.”
This was a theme repeated later in section ten of the piece, when Eban blamed Trump as being responsible for China’s control over the July 2020 World Health Organization mission to Wuhan to investigate the origins of COVID-19. The Trump administration had “failed to counter China’s control over the scope of the mission,” wrote Vanity Fair, while ignoring the glaring evidence that is quickly accumulating, showing how Dr. Anthony Fauci, the WHO, and Fauci’s own organization NIAID all adopted a China-centric attitude as early as January 2020.
But such an admission would not fit the narrative which is being portrayed by Vanity Fair — namely that it is Vanity Fair and other such left-wing institutions which have been tirelessly in pursuit of the truth about COVID, while being constantly hampered by others.
Aside from the repeated instances of hypocrisy in tone, one thing is eminently clear in Eban’s piece. The so-called lab leak theory is very clearly, and prominently being proposed and confirmed by the mainstream media. Not that such reports will point the finger of blame at the real culprits, for even in the closing lines, Eban manages to blame America in general for COVID-19, instead of the few key players, such as Fauci, Peter Daszak, and the WHO.
Mice chimeras in the Wuhan lab and the link to COVID-19
One incredible element in the article, which is left mostly unexpanded upon by Eban, is the curious admission of gain-of-function research with mice, essentially weaponizing a bat coronavirus in order to infect human cells.
U.S researchers into COVID origins found a 2015 paper authored by Wuhan Institute of Virology lead coronavirus researcher Dr. Shi Zhengli, and University of North Carolina epidemiologist Ralph Baric, which proved that a spike protein from a “novel coronavirus” could indeed infect human cells.
“Using mice as subjects, they inserted the protein from a Chinese rufous horseshoe bat into the molecular structure of the SARS virus from 2002, creating a new, infectious pathogen.”
The paper was funded in part by the U.S. National Institutes of Health, as well as Daszak’s own group, EcoHealth Alliance.
Some years earlier, Shi had published a paper in Nature, noting how certain bat coronaviruses could in fact jump to humans without the assistance of an intermediary animal. Her discovery came after isolating a live SARS-like bat coronavirus and realising it could enter the human body via the ACE-2 receptor protein.
Another piece of evidence was unearthed by U.S. National Security Council (NSC) personnel, who pointed to a study submitted in April 2020, authored by 23 scientists, of whom 11 worked for the Chinese army medical research institute. These scientists had used “gene-editing technology known as CRISPR” in order to then create mice with humanized lungs, and subsequently determine how susceptible they were to COVID-19, or SARS-CoV-2.
The NSC personnel determined that the mice must have been engineered during the summer of 2019, thus even though the paper was published during the period of COVID-19, the research of human lung susceptibility to COVID was performed some months prior.
These two monumental aspects demand further research, as well as in-depth answers, although such are hardly likely to be forthcoming from the Chinese Communist officials. Despite reporting on them, Eban does not lend significant weight to the two items of news, and the details are almost lost in the intriguing narrative of international cover-ups, deceit, and intrigue related to the investigation into COVID-19’s origins.
Yet the details amount to nothing less than this: the lead coronavirus researcher and head of the Wuhan institute’s Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases researched, developed, and tested — over many years — how a lab-manufactured coronavirus pathogen could and would infect humans. Then, Chinese military scientists analyzed how human cells would respond to COVID-19, many months before the virus reportedly existed.
SARS-CoV-2 — a unique virus, never discovered naturally
The fingers pointing to a probable lab leak at the Wuhan Institute of Virology is further supported by evidence put forward by a Wall Street Journal (WSJ) opinion piece only days ago by Dr. Steven Quay, a physician scientist, and University of California Berkeley physics professor Richard Muller.
They highlighted the GGG-GGG sequence genome which is the “exact sequence” which exists in SARS-CoV-2. An interesting point about such a genome sequence is that “in the entire class of coronaviruses that includes CoV-2, the CGG-CGG combination has never been found naturally.” Yet while it has never been found naturally, it is the “insertion sequence of choice” in laboratories, when scientists are looking to alter a virus with a “gain-of-function supercharge.”
This “supercharge” alteration can be easily done and “leaves no trace of manipulation.”
Quay and Muller also mentioned that COVID-19 appeared to be unusual by emerging into the world already a highly contagious version, completely unlike SARS and MERS, which had to evolve into the most contagious form as it spread through the population.
“Such early optimization is unprecedented, and it suggests a long period of adaptation that predated its public spread. Science knows of only one way that could be achieved: simulated natural evolution, growing the virus on human cells until the optimum is achieved,” wrote the pair.
This is, as they noted, the precise work of gain-of-function research. Quay and Muller also referred to “humanized mice” who are modified to have the same coronavirus receptors as humans, so that a virus could be developed on them. With such handy experimental fodder, a virus could easily be manufactured and only released into the world when it was at its most contagious.