According to a bombshell report published by Vanity Fair, the Chinese military “engineered mice with humanized lungs” in 2019 to test viruses on them, prompting the United States National Security Council to speculate in early 2020 whether the Chinese military was conducting the tests to see which viruses might be transportable to humans.
The report notes that a study submitted in April 2020 from the Academy of Military Medical Sciences, the Chinese army’s medical research institute, acknowledged that the Chinese military had utilized CRISPR, a gene-editing technology that permits DNA sequences to be altered and can also modify gene function, to create mice with humanized lungs and examine if they were vulnerable to SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.
“Of the study’s 23 co-authors, 11 of them worked for the Academy of Military Medical Sciences, the medical research institute for the Chinese army,” Vanity Fair noted. “Believing they had uncovered important evidence in favor of the lab-leak hypothesis, the NSC investigators began reaching out to other agencies. That’s when the hammer came down. ‘We were dismissed,’ said Anthony Ruggiero, the NSC’s senior director for counterproliferation and biodefense. ‘The response was very negative.’”
On January 15, 2021, in the last days of the Trump administration, the State Department released a fact sheet regarding the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV). It denoted that multiple WIV researchers had demonstrated COVID-19-like symptoms in the fall of 2019, prior to the first identified case and also that WIV researchers had “engaged in classified research, including laboratory animal experiments, on behalf of the Chinese military since at least 2017.”
That prompted Bloomberg three days later to report that Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying snapped that the U.S. was lying, also attacking Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, saying, “The so-called fact sheet is another lie sheet produced by the U.S. side. This fully demonstrates that some U.S. politicians are keen on violating science, hyping up conspiracy theories, spreading political viruses for their personal gains, while paying no attention to public security and people’s lives. This is also the last madness of Pompeo — Mr. Lies.”
Only a few weeks before that, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi had insisted that the COVID-19 virus was caused elsewhere in the world, saying, “More and more research suggests that the pandemic was likely to have been caused by separate outbreaks in multiple places in the world.” He claimed that China took “immediate actions to carry out epidemiological investigation, identify the pathogen and publicize key information including the genome sequencing of the virus. All this sounded alarm bells across the world,” Bloomberg reported.
Minister Wang protested that China had been telling the truth about the coronavirus, saying, “We have stood at the forefront of fighting misinformation, rebutting attempts of politicization and stigmatization. We were determined to make sure that the objective narrative and collective memory of the battle against the pandemic would not be distorted by lies.”