In a June 2021 interview, whistleblower Dr. Li Meng Yan, a physician and virologist who worked at the University of Hong Kong School of Public Health, a top coronavirus research lab, revealed evidence to support her belief that SARS-CoV-2 is not of natural origin and was created by the Chinese military intentionally to use as a bioweapon.1
Yan revealed that, in 2015, Chinese military scientists wrote a paper titled “The Unnatural Origin of SARS and New Species of Man-Made Viruses as Genetic Bioweapons,” which suggests that, based on what’s known about SARS-1, coronaviruses are a good material from which to generate a new bioweapon that can cause more damage than traditional bioweapons.
China Prepared for ‘Biological’ Third World War
The document, which was also obtained by investigators with the U.S. State Department, suggests that a third world war would be “biological,” with bioweapons “the core weapon for victory.”2 Yan said:3
“Americans don’t understand that the government can do these things to destroy the world, and they even make their own citizens become victims in the beginning … We know that in China, based on Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) history, these kinds of things repeatedly happen … So we are not surprised. And China’s government kept telling that this is a bioweapon, but they insist that it’s from the U.S.”
Yan refers to SARS-CoV-2 as the PLA, or People’s Liberation Army, virus and states that it was owned by the Chinese military. China has been searching for decades for a novel zoonotic virus that can infect humans, secretly conducting experiments that were never published. According to Yan, the Chinese government was conducting trials in Wuhan around the time of the initial COVID-19 outbreak.
She believes they didn’t mean to launch the virus in Wuhan at that time, but because they lacked proper knowledge about its transmissibility it became out of control and turned into an outbreak.
At that point, with the virus already in circulation, they decided to take advantage of the outbreak and “destroy the world, since it’s already happened.” Initially, people were allowed to leave China and travel throughout the world, bringing the virus with them.
Ideal Conditions for Bioweapons’ Release Detailed
The document goes into disturbing detail about how to best release a bioweapon to cause the maximum amount of carnage. Daily Mail reported:4
“The scientists say such attacks should not be carried out in the middle of a clear day, as intense sunlight can damage the pathogens, while rain or snow can affect the aerosol particles. Instead, it should be released at night, or at dawn, dusk, or under cloudy weather, with ‘a stable wind direction … so that the aerosol can float into the target area.’
Meanwhile, the research also notes that such an attack would result in a surge of patients requiring hospital treatment, which then ‘could cause the enemy’s medical system to collapse.’”
The document’s 18 authors worked at high-risk laboratories, where chemical weapons expert Hamish de Bretton-Gordon said China had successfully thwarted attempts at regulation or policing.5 Among the achievements made to further bioweapons were “major advances in the delivery of biological agents,” according to the document.
“For example, the newfound ability to freeze-dry micro-organisms has made it possible to store biological agents and aerosolize them during attacks,” the documented states. Daily Mail reported that U.K. MP Tom Tugendhat, chairman of the foreign affairs committee, added, “This document raises major concerns about the ambitions of some of those who advise the top party leadership. Even under the tightest controls these weapons are dangerous.”6
Dual Use Research Is Inherently Risky
Gain-of-function (GOF) research refers to studies that have the potential to enhance the ability of pathogens to cause disease, including enhancing either their pathogenicity or transmissibility.7 GOF is a type of dual use research, which is so named because it involves research on select agents and toxins that could either benefit society or destroy it, depending on whether or not it falls into the wrong hands.
China’s GOF research at the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV) has been at the center of concerns that COVID-19 may have originated in a lab.
Ralph Baric, Ph.D., at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, developed humanized mice used in GOF research by WIV8 and worked closely with Shi Zhengli, Ph.D., director of WIV’s Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases, also known as “bat woman,” on research using genetic engineering to create a “new bat SARS-like virus … that can jump directly from its bat hosts to humans.” According to Peter Gøtzsche with the Institute for Scientific Freedom:9
“Their work focused on enhancing the ability of bat viruses to attack humans so as to ‘examine the emergence potential.’ In 2015, they created a novel virus by taking the backbone of the SARS virus replacing its spike protein with one from another bat virus known as SHC014-CoV.10 This manufactured virus was able to infect a lab culture of cells from the human airways.
They wrote that scientific review panels might deem their research too risky to pursue but argued that it had the potential to prepare for and mitigate future outbreaks. However, the value of gain-of-function studies in preventing the COVID-19 pandemic was negative, as this research highly likely created the pandemic.”
Further, as Daily Mail reported, dual use research can be used either for good or for evil, depending on motives. Peter Jennings, executive director of the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, explained:11
“There is no clear distinction for research capability because whether it’s used offensively or defensively is not a decision these scientists would take. If you are building skills ostensibly to protect your military from a biological attack, you’re at the same time giving your military a capacity to use these weapons offensively. You can’t separate the two.”
Chinese Military Involved in Coronavirus Research?
Chinese dissident Lianchao Han, who formerly worked for the Chinese government, raised concerns that military researchers and coronavirus experts may be working closely on biodefense operations. Cao Wu-Chun, a senior army officer and government adviser on bioterrorism, for instance, has worked with Shi on virus-detection projects.12
“A comment was made on social media after Colonel Cao published a paper on a fatal tick bite, saying he and Prof Shi ‘can always find a virus that has never been found in humans’, adding: ‘I suspect this is another so-called ‘scientific research’ made in the laboratory,’” Daily Mail reported.13
WIV researchers have been conducting experiments involving the bat coronavirus RaTG13 — said to be the closest known relative to SARS-CoV-2, with 96.2% similarity — since at least 2016. In 2012, six miners working in a copper mine with known bats present were infected with a bat coronavirus and developed COVID-19-like symptoms. RaTG13 was sampled from the mine where the miners were infected.14
“It later emerged she [Shi] changed its name from another virus identified in a previous paper, thus obscuring its link to three miners who died from a strange respiratory disease they caught clearing bat droppings,” according to Daily Mail.15 However, in another twist, Yan said that the Chinese government told Shi to “throw out fake virus RaTG13 as the ancestor of SARS-CoV-2” as part of the misinformation campaign to deflect from the virus’ real origin. According to Yan:16
“They say the Bat Woman Shi Zhengli got RaTG13 from a copper mine in Yunnan and, after a bit of modifications, inserted the furin cleavage site to make it the Sars-CoV-2 virus. I have actually proved in my reports that this is not true.
Yunnan is in the west, but the real virus comes from the east, Zhoushan. It’s just a way of diverting attention from the role of the Chinese military. It is the People’s Liberation Army which found Zhoushan bat coronaviruses ZC45 and ZXC21 in 2017 in the east of China and it is these viruses that come closest to Sars-CoV-2.”
US Warned of Foreign Threats to Biomedical Research
Dr. Francis Collins, director of the U.S. National Institutes of Health, sent a warning to 10,000 academic institutions warning of foreign threats to U.S. biomedical research in 2018. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, even more scrutiny has been placed on the ties between China, including Wuhan, and U.S. academia, especially as the idea that SARS-CoV-2 originated in a bioweapons laboratory in Wuhan, China, gained traction.
The Galveston National Laboratory, which is part of the University of Texas, is a level 4 laboratory that studies highly dangerous pathogens. It was investigated, as it had approximately 24 contracts with Chinese universities and technology companies, along with ties to WIV and exchanges between national security scientists and research sharing.17
The former chairman of the Harvard department of chemistry, nanoscience expert Charles Lieber, Ph.D., was also arrested in early 2020 by federal agencies, suspected of illegal dealings with China.18 In December 2021, he was convicted of making false statements and lying to federal investigators in an attempt to hide his participation in the Chinese Thousand Talents Program.19
The Thousand Talents Program (TTP), created by the Chinese Communist Party in 2008, was said to be a method to create an innovative society, but has raised red flags for posing a threat to U.S. technology endeavors.
“[O]ver the years, the program, which is estimated to have had approximately 7,000 participants, has become extremely controversial, generating deep concern within the U.S. government about Chinese IP theft,” the Center for Strategic and International Studies explained.20
The Department of Justice also has an ongoing campaign to identify and stop so-called “nontraditional collaborators” — known as the China Initiative — which began in November 2018. Most of the cases involve scientists in academia or high-tech industries, with varying levels of allegations.
Andrew Lelling, former U.S. attorney for the Massachusetts district, described U.S. researchers accepting support from Chinese researchers while also receiving federal funding as a “dangerous game” that could easily backfire.21
Further, while offensive biowarfare research was ended in the U.S. in 1969, and the U.S. and China adopted a treaty banning the development of bioweapons, there are loopholes. Namely, defensive bioweapons research is still allowed, which means the U.S. and other countries are permitted to manufacture and study toxins that could be used against it by an enemy.22
Daily Mail quoted David Asher, who led state department inquiries into the origins of COVID-19, who explained, “The Chinese have made it clear they see biotechnology as a big part of the future of hybrid warfare. The big question is whether their work in these fields is offensive or defensive.”23