Writes Matt Ridley in spiked-online.com: “In private, they said it was plausible. In public, they called it a conspiracy theory.”
However, the strong possibility of a lab-leak in Wuhan can no longer be denied.
The emails unveiled this week reveal no good scientific reason at all for why these leading virologists changed their minds and became deniers rather than believers in even the remote possibility of a lab leak, all in just a few days in February 2020. No new data, no new arguments. But they do very clearly reveal a blatant political reason for the volte-face. Speculating about a lab leak, said Ron Fouchier, a Dutch researcher, might ‘do unnecessary harm to science in general and science in China in particular’. Francis Collins was pithier, worrying about ‘doing great potential harm to science and international harmony’. Contradicting Donald Trump, protecting science’s reputation at all costs and keeping in with those who dole out large grants are pretty strong incentives to change one’s mind.
In August 2020 Kristian Andersen and Robert Garry were among the lead investigators to receive $8.9million to study emerging infectious diseases, in a grant from Anthony Fauci’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, part of Francis Collins’s National Institutes of Health.
So, once the lab-leak narrative finishes its migration from conspiracy theory to accident (or even conspiracy) fact, who will be made responsible in the end?