On April 6, a reporter asked President Joe Biden if he had ever questioned Xi Jinping about reports “that China maybe misled the world at the beginning” of the pandemic.
“I have not had that conversation with President Xi,” said Biden, who has not commented on reports about the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV) and its possible role in the release of the virus that causes COVID-19. Evidence is pointing in that direction.
In February, Karen Pauls of the CBC reported that Canada had dismissed Dr. Xiangguo Qiu, a virologist from Tianjin, China, from the National Microbiology Lab (NML) in Winnipeg. As Pauls explained, in 2017–18 Qiu made at least five trips to China, including one to train scientists at the WIV, “which does research with the most deadly pathogens.”
According to Canadian government officials, Qiu was acting in response to the WIV’s request for virus samples when she exported some to the lab in 2019.
As Pauls noted, the samples included Ebola Makona (three varieties), Mayinga, Kikwit, Ivory Coast, Bundibugyo, Sudan Boniface, Sudan Gulu, MA-Ebov, GP-Ebov, GP-Sudan, Hendra, Nipah Malaysia, and Nipah Bangladesh.
As Tom Blackwell of Canada’s National Post explains, Nipah is transmittable from animals to humans and “also able to jump between humans—it can cause acute breathing problems and encephalitis, potentially fatal brain inflammation.” Blackwell cited a 2018 NML paper warning that Nipah’s “threat to cause a widespread outbreak and its potential for weaponization has increased.”
According to government documents obtained by the CBC, Qiu’s trips to the Wuhan lab were “third-party funded” but the name of the party was redacted. Also blacked out were names of Qiu’s collaborators during her September 2017 trip to China.
Last June, University of Ottawa law professor and epidemiologist Amir Attaran told the CBC that Qiu “sent one of the deadliest viruses on Earth, and multiple varieties of it to maximize the genetic diversity and maximize what experimenters in China could do with it, to a laboratory in China that does dangerous gain of function experiments. And that has links to the Chinese military.”
Gain of function research, as Nidhi Subbaraman explains in Nature, “involves making pathogens more deadly or more transmissible.” The National Institutes of Health (NIH) banned such research in 2014 but revived it in 2017, and the NIH and State Department also approved the WIV as a collaborator. U.S. funding for the WIV was channeled through the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), headed by Dr. Anthony Fauci since 1984.
Fauci earned a medical degree in 1966 and hired on with the NIH in 1968. His bio shows no advanced degrees in biochemistry or molecular biology, so strictly speaking he is not a virologist. Fauci is uncritical of China and praises World Health Organization boss Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, who in turn praises China’s response to the pandemic as an example to the world.
Fauci contends the coronavirus was not engineered in a laboratory, but the NIAID boss has been evasive about what, exactly, went on at the Wuhan lab. WHO mouthpiece Peter Ben Embarek, a food safety and nutrition specialist, says it’s “extremely unlikely” that the virus causing COVID-19 leaked from the WIV. A March 30 WHO report contended likewise, and China’s communist regime denies that the WIV was the source of the pandemic. Others remain curious.
In February, House Republicans called for an investigation of NIH funding for the WIV. The GOP members want an independent watchdog of Health and Human Services to find out when the NIH was first aware that coronavirus experiments were conducted at the WIV and whether the NIH coordinated any messaging about the lab leak hypothesis.
The lawmakers also seek to know how much NIH support the WIV has received and when its funding eligibility ends. Meanwhile, north of the border, the quest for evidence continues.
Last month, a committee of Canada’s House of Commons ordered the Public Health Agency of Canada to turn over all documents related to the firing of Qiu and her husband Keding Cheng. The committee also wants documents “related to a transfer of Ebola and Henipah viruses to China’s Wuhan Institute of Virology,” according to The Canadian Press. The results should be of considerable interest to people around the world but probably not at the White House.
During the 2020 campaign, Biden said the Chinese communists are “not bad folks,” and “not competition for us.” When President Donald Trump imposed a ban on travel from China in January 2020, Biden called it “xenophobic.” So the Delaware Democrat is not likely to press Xi Jinping on China’s role in the pandemic any time soon, if ever.
Lloyd Billingsley is the author of “Yes I Con: United Fakes of America,” “Barack ‘em Up: A Literary Investigation,” “Hollywood Party,” and other books. His articles have appeared in many publications, including Frontpage Magazine, City Journal, the Wall Street Journal, and American Greatness.
Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.