Former White House COVID-19 testing czar, Adm. Brett Giroir, has accused Dr. Anthony Fauci of lying last year about the origins of the CCP virus, as health officials ramp up efforts to probe the hypothesis that the virus emerged from a lab accident.
In May last year, Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), claimed that the virus could not have been “artificially or deliberately manipulated” at China’s Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV)—a possibility that is now receiving wider recognition.
Until last month, the infectious disease expert had maintained that COVID-19 had developed naturally. Fauci told the National Geographic in May 2020 that there’s no scientific evidence that the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus was made in a lab.
“Everything about the stepwise evolution over time strongly indicates that [this virus] evolved in nature and then jumped species,” Fauci told the publication at the time.
“The statement from last year was completely false,” Giroir, former Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) assistant secretary, told Fox News’ America’s Newsroom. “There was no pattern of mutations that suggest that it went right from an animal in a natural situation to humans—and there’s still no evidence to show that. So that statement was completely wrong.”
Fauci was being “obviously antagonistic” to the Trump administration, Giroir claimed.
“The [former] president suggested that it could have been a lab leak,” Giroir continued. “So this was obviously in contradiction to a hypothesis that we know is still…the most likely one; it was an antagonistic to the [former] president’s position and to many of the people’s positions within the Trump administration. It was against it. It was contrary.”
Giroir told co-host Bill Hemmer that Fauci strongly pushed the possibility that the CCP virus developed naturally despite a lack of data.
“Fauci … argued very convincingly that this [COVID-19] was something that evolved in nature. There was no data that evolved in nature and there’s still no data,” he said.
Early reports about an outbreak of the CCP virus first appeared in Wuhan in late 2019, when a cluster of cases was reported by state-controlled media to be linked to a local wet market. More than a year later, the origins of the virus remain unknown, although the possibility that the virus leaked from a laboratory at China’s WIV is gaining traction.
The Wall Street Journal reported on May 23 that three researchers at the WIV were hospitalized in November 2019 with symptoms consistent with seasonal flu and COVID-19. The newspaper cited unnamed U.S. government sources familiar with a previously undisclosed U.S. intelligence report.
President Joe Biden has since ordered the U.S. Intelligence Community (IC) to ramp up efforts to investigate the virus’s origins.
“Look, there is a laboratory five miles of the origin that was doing dangerous research on bat coronaviruses. Sometimes, the simplest explanation is that. We do have labs leaks,” Giroir said.
He added: “Lab leaks are not uncommon and I really think data like people getting ill in November from the laboratory, if that proves true, that coincides with exactly when this virus in China. The evidence is there.”
Meanwhile, Fauci is facing further scrutiny following the release of thousands of his emails to the public this week via a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request.
The emails suggested that his team scrambled in early 2020 to respond to public reporting about the virus leaking from the WIV. Those emails suggested that officials were concerned with prior U.S. involvement with the laboratory.
Both Fauci and National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director Francis Collins have both denied funding “gain of function” research, or experiments aimed at increasing the transmissibility or virulence of a virus, at the lab in Wuhan. However, documents show about $600,000 of a grant given to the EcoHealth Alliance was channeled to the Wuhan Institute of Virology to research coronavirus in bats in 2014.
The Epoch Times has contacted the NIAID, which Fauci heads, for comment.
Jack Phillips contributed to this report.