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Brownstone Institute

Jordan Peterson: Enemy of the State

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17 minute read

From the Brownstone Institute

BY Jeffrey A. TuckerJEFFREY A. TUCKER

The famed psychologist and scholar, and global media personality, Jordan Peterson is being told that he must report to the Ontario College of Psychologists for re-education or else lose his license to practice. He is challenging the order in court, for whatever that’s worth.

No question that this follows his aggressive questioning of the whole of the Covidian agenda, including mass forced vaccination of the population.

It’s hardly the first time he has gotten in trouble with the powers that be. His initial fame came from his brave refusal to acquiesce to the “preferred pronoun” movement in Canada that came before lockdowns. That he is now ensnared in the machinery of the biomedical security state is predictable; this is today’s means by which regime enemies are punished and silenced.

It so happens that I heard Jordan speak in Budapest only months before the lockdowns that coincided with his own grave problem that he encountered with prescription medicine: as with many he was misled about what he believed was a simple medication. The timing was a tragedy because it took him out of the space of public intellectual life right when we needed him most: during the early months of lockdowns.

His voice went silent during these times. It was heartbreaking. The very small resistance continued despite his incapacitation. Once he got better, he gradually became aware of what had taken place and then became ferocious, as any thinking person must. Thus his current issues with the authorities.

Looking back at this date, it seems almost like he saw what was coming. In those months before lockdowns, I wrote the following report on what I saw in Budapest.

* * * * *

Almost from the first words of his outdoor lecture in Budapest, Hungary, held in the courtyard of the St. Stephen’s Basilica, Jordan Peterson’s eyes teared up and his voice cracked with emotion. Not just once. It happened repeatedly. His eyes never entirely dried. The audience could see it all because of the cameras and the huge monitors that made him some 25 times life-size, which is pretty apropos to his status as an intellectual in this part of the world. Indeed, in most parts of the world.

Tonight was interesting, however, because his tears were clearly not performative in any sense. It was a show of extreme vulnerability that he surely hoped that he would not show. He strikes me as a deeply emotional person – a temperamental cryer – who has probably practiced a lifetime to stop this.

It didn’t work this time. Before long, during his impassioned presentation on behalf of the dignity of every individual and the responsibility of living a life of truth, audience members too were tearing up in the midst of the awesome silence that fell over this massive crowd during the hour-long presentation.

He never quite got around to explaining his emotion. I think I can, however. So here is my go at it.

The first issue had to do with his introduction in this hugely dramatic space, which was filled with flares and fanfare and oceans of love from those who gathered, not just people with tickets (which were hard to get) but an equal number behind the barricades, extending as far back as one could see. It was impossible not to view this as a show of incredible affection for the man, his work, his influence, his personal courage, and his message. The crowds and the anticipation were overwhelming.

Now, if you are Peterson, you would have to contrast this scene with the raging nonsense you will read about yourself in the mainstream press, to say nothing of the academic literature along with various left-wing hit sites out there who routinely twist anyone’s words to confirm their wild narratives. His every word is picked apart, his footnotes followed, his analogies deconstructed in an unending game of gotcha in order to put him into some kind of predefined political category for easy dismissal.

For the easily led, he is a target. For the witch hunters in media and academia, he is a convenient scapegoat. Within the academy, he is the object of unrelenting envy. In the face of all this, including campus protests and media hectoring, he has been steadfast and brave, refusing to be intimidated and instead using the attention to get his message out there. To cut through all this nonsense, and like and appreciate him in any case, already marks you as being in possession of a discerning mind, a rebel against conventional wisdom. Apparently, there is no shortage of such rebels.

The crowds – I don’t have an estimate but there were 20,000 people at the Brain Bar event at which he was a main draw – might have seemed to him as a tribute to the resiliency of the human spirit. That people were there at all, seeking not a confirmation of political bias but rather to gain a greater sense of personal purpose, shows that the powerful in this world cannot finally rule the day.

He is just one man with a message against the world’s most powerful voices in media, academia, and government – and yet through ideas alone, beginning as nothing but one man in a classroom, he has become the world’s most influential public intellectual.

As for his emotion this night, Jordan probably felt a deep sense of gratitude for being the recipient of this affection and for his place in inspiring people to become intellectual dissidents. That is enough to cause tears of gratitude.

There is far more that overwhelms you about being in this remarkable and indescribably beautiful city. The history is deep and rich and present everywhere you look. There is drama within eyesight of anywhere you stand. The Danube river and bridges, the castles, the stunning Parliament building, the churches and universities, all of it, are not dusty old monuments but currently in use amidst a teeming commercial life that is equal parts old and new.

The whole city also feels extremely young, similarly today to what it might have been like in the late 19th century, in the last years of the Belle Époque when Budapest’s cultural and commercial life rivaled Vienna’s. It’s a magical place, as delightful to visit as anywhere on the planet, in my view.

But what you see is only on the surface. The scars of this city are extremely deep, having been put through astonishing traumas of totalitarianism of the left and right, the bombings, the terror and cruelty and poverty – the experience is not that far back in history. It was tyrannized by Soviet occupation twice, first after World War I and then following World War II, between which it experienced Nazi occupation and devastating Allied bombing that destroyed its infrastructure (all of which has since been rebuilt).

And yet you can walk the city and not see this deep suffering overtly. The city, which wears this grim past lightly, is a tribute to the survival of hope in the face of overwhelming forces that sought to destroy it. The city lives. It thrives. It dreams anew.

In addition to being a psychologist, Peterson is also a historian of totalitarianism. There are ways to read history as a dry reportage of events. That is not how he reads history. Good historians recount events. Great historians tell stories as if they lived them. Peterson is next level: he has sought the inner philosophical and psychological turmoil that shape history through the moral choices of both the oppressed and oppressors. He seeks to understand the inner horror from the point of view of human nature.

As he exclaimed in a slightly terrifying moment, he has read about the history of Hungary and totalitarianism “not as a victim, not as a hero, but as a perpetrator.” What he means is that we must come to terms with evil not just as something external to ourselves but as a force deep within the human personality itself – not excluding our own personalities. What character traits do we need to acquire, what values do we need to adopt, that can prepare us to resist when evil invites our participation in violence and terror? He never stops reminding us what we are capable of doing both good and evil, and urges that we steel ourselves to live good lives even when it is not in our political and economic interests to do so.

So here we were in St Stephen’s square outside the great Basilica, packed with young people there to hear his message, in this remarkable city, a tribute to the resiliency of the human personality in the presence of one hundred years of oppression and violence. And yet there we were in this year, an age of hope, everyone given yet another chance to get it right, to live well, to treat others with dignity, to build peace and prosperity yet again.

The look on his face, and tears in his eyes, seem to suggest to himself and others: we can do this. We will not give in to evil. We can be strong. We can learn, build, and achieve. Against all odds, he has emerged as a leading voice to add to the possibility of success in our times.

I’ve heard Peterson live before and, like you, watched many of his speeches and interviews on youtube. I can tell you, I’ve never heard anything like what he said on this evening. It was for the ages.

The latter part of his presentation was lighter, with some very charming “one-minute therapy” sessions on stage with audience members that variously turned profound once again. And here is what is amazing: you discover that the real core of Peterson is not his political outlook or his role as a cultural pundit, historian, or philosopher but his professional training as a psychotherapist, just one man there to help one individual find a way forward through the terrifying struggles of life. Through technology, he finds himself in the blessed role of serving millions of willing readers and listeners.

Even now he can’t possibly know the full impact of his influence. I suspect, for example, that he is unaware of the crucial role he played in American political life when only two years ago, young men were being drawn to the invidious politics of the so-called Alt-right as an alternative to the false moralism of the social-justice left. They were drawn to his brave stances against speech controls, but he knew better than to side with any mob on either side of the extremes. He schooled even his new fans in the evils of every brand of identity politics – and the moral urgency of universal human dignity – and justly earned the wrath of alt-right leadership. Thus did he contribute to saving a generation from perdition in extremely volatile times. For this, he deserves the gratitude of every genuine liberal, but, so far as I know, he has never been publicly credited for this achievement.

“Ego Sum Via Veritas et Vita,” read the sign above the entrance to the Basilica. I am the way, the truth, and the life. The sign reminds us of the universal hunger to find direction, purpose, meaning, and redemption in the midst of the chaos and anomy of the historical narrative.

Peterson is not a religious man but he respects its ethos and contribution. This night he became a preacher of goodness, of civility, of moral strength in the face of struggle. The poetry of it all, and the promise that goodness and decency can prevail, was manifest in the crowds and the city right here, this night, in Budapest. It combined to inspire him to find the fullness of his voice.

And this is why he cried tears of joy.

* * * *

Soon after this presentation, Peterson was in the hospital in recovery at the same time the world of freedom and rights fell apart. He woke to a different world. He began to fight again. And here we are, exactly as he predicted: he is the enemy of the state. He has spent his entire professional career not only as a scholar and therapist – really a genius – but also as a resistor and a bringer of light in dark times.

Author

  • Jeffrey A. Tucker

    Jeffrey A. Tucker is Founder and President of the Brownstone Institute. He is also Senior Economics Columnist for Epoch Times, author of 10 books, including Liberty or Lockdown, and thousands of articles in the scholarly and popular press. He speaks widely on topics of economics, technology, social philosophy, and culture.

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Brownstone Institute

Eye Protection Wasn’t Misdirection

Published on

From the Brownstone Institute

BY Megan MansellMEGAN MANSELL

“If you have goggles or an eye shield, you should use it.” ~ Anthony Fauci, July 30th, 2020

We had heard enough from Fauci by the time this comment was made in mid-2020 to begin automatically tuning out his frequently contradictory advice. What if we had given weight to this comment and explored why he began recommending goggles (yet never donned them himself)?

While I’m not surprised that the inner anatomy of the face including ocular ducts and connectivity within structures aren’t common knowledge, I expected more of a reaction from the medical community regarding Fauci’s push for eye protection. Not only do medical professionals take extensive coursework on human anatomy — they are required to meet annually with an Industrial Hygienist for fit tested, hazard-specific kit for each exposure setting , including ocular protection. This testing process requires going into detail about each exposure setting and required donning and donning practices within the scope of their professional duties.

Instead of elaborating on his recommendation, Fauci just publicly hushed on the issue and folks carried on, obediently masked up yet entirely neglectful of their nasolacrimal ducts. Shame, shame.

These are the structures of the lacrimal apparatus connecting ocular and nasal pathways. Basically, the eye drains into the nasal cavity. None of the talking heads of the medical community ever seem to bring up that these parts of the body connect with one another, and while we hear about masks ad nauseam three entire years after the onset of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, no one is arguing with strangers on the internet about goggles.

Bernie Sanders was recently praised for being the only person at the February, 2023 State of the Union donning a (sub-grade, non-mitigating) respirator, but eye spy something fishy. It was noted that he kept removing his glasses, as they were fogging up.

Those who have donned respirators have experienced that exhale emissions are generally redirected out of the nose bridge (or out of side gaps if improperly sealed). This is the exhale emission plume create by a fitted, unvalved N95 respirator:

This plume of warm, moist respiratory emissions is what causes glasses to fog. This is precisely why I continue to argue that masks are NOT source control for respiratory aerosols, because these apparatuses are not designed nor intended to protect others from your emissions, but solely for protection of the wearer. The ASTM agrees with me on this matter:

The American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) Standard Specification for Barrier Face Coverings F3502-21 Note 2 states, “There are currently no established methods for measuring outward leakage from a barrier face covering, medical mask, or respirator. Nothing in this standard addresses or implies a quantitative assessment of outward leakage and no claims can be made about the degree to which a barrier face covering reduces emission of human-generated particles.”

Additionally, Note 5 states, “There are currently no specific accepted techniques that are available to measure outward leakage from a barrier face covering or other products. Thus, no claims may be made with respect to the degree of source control offered by the barrier face covering based on the leakage assessment.”

So does it matter if your neighbor’s exhale emissions are directed in your face for the duration of your 6-hour flight?

Absolutely. Imagine sitting between these two fine fellas with your eyes exposed, and their emission plumes directed right in your face.

In mitigation of aerosol hazards, eye protection is a standard part of required kit, because those from the correct domain of expertise, Industrial Hygiene, know enough about human anatomy to remember the interconnectivity of facial structures.

Ocular transmission of SARS-CoV-2

There has been a great deal of focus on respiratory protection since the start of the pandemic, but ocular transmission was already established for SARS-CoV-1.

“SARS-CoV-1 has been shown to be transmitted through direct contact or with droplet or aerosolized particle contact with the mucous membranes of the eyes, nose and mouth. Indeed, during the 2003 SARS-CoV-1 outbreak in Toronto, health care workers who failed to wear eye protection in caring for patients infected with SARS-CoV-1 had a higher rate of seroconversion.”

We are beginning to see mounting research on ocular transmission for SARS-CoV-2 emerge, as well, traveling through the nasolacrimal duct from the eye, draining into the sinus cavity.

There is evidence that SARS-CoV-2 may either directly infect cells on the ocular surface, or virus can be carried by tears through the nasolacrimal duct to infect the nasal or gastrointestinal epithelium.”

“The nasolacrimal system provides an anatomic connection between the ocular surface and the upper respiratory tract. When a drop is instilled into the eye, even though some of it is absorbed by the cornea and the conjunctiva, most of it is drained into the nasal cavity through the nasolacrimal canal and is subsequently transferred to the upper respiratory or the gastrointestinal tract.”

SARS-CoV-2 on the ocular surface can be transferred to different systems along with tears through the nasolacrimal route.”

Seldom did ocular exposure result in eye infection, while systemic infections occurred regularly. Ocular exposure cannot always be determined as the point of contact for this reason, as an eye infection does not always coincide with systemic infection.

The nasolacrimal duct is often discussed in ocular transmission research, but this is not the sole ocular transmission pathway discussed.

“There are two pathways by which ocular exposure could lead to systemic transmission of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. (1) Direct infection of ocular tissues including cornea, conjunctiva, lacrimal gland, meibomian glands from virus exposure and (2) virus in the tears, which then goes through the nasolacrimal duct to infect the nasal or gastrointestinal epithelium.”

Additionally, research is being conducted on the usage of ocular secretions in transmitting SARS-CoV-2.

“Then here comes the question, whether SARS-CoV-2 detected in conjunctival secretions and tears is an infectious virus? Colavita et al inoculated Vero E6 cells with the first RNA positive ocular sample obtained from a COVID-19 patient. Cytopathic effect was observed 5 days post-inoculation, and viral replication was confirmed by real-time RT-PCR in spent cell medium. Hui et al also isolated SARS-CoV-2 virus from a nasopharyngeal aspirate specimen and a throat swab of a COVID-19 patient. The isolated virus not only infected human conjunctival explants but also infected more extensively and reached higher infectious viral titers than SARS-CoV.”

According to this study, ocular secretions were highly infectious.

“The ocular surface can serve as a reservoir and source of contagion for SARS-CoV-2. SARS-CoV-2 can be transmitted to the ocular surface through hand-eye contact and aerosols, and then transfer to other systems through nasolacrimal route and hematogenous metastasis. The possibility of ocular transmission of SARS-CoV-2 cannot be ignored.”

This paper also has a focus on aerosols coming into contact with ocular mucosa.

“Once aerosols form, SARS-CoV-2 can bind to the ACE2 on the exposed ocular mucosa to cause infection. In order to prevent aerosols from contacting the eye surface, eye protection cannot be ignored.”

An additional area explored in this analysis discusses rhesus macaques wherein solely those inoculated through the ocular route became infected.

“If the ocular surface is the portal for SARS-CoV-2 to enter, where does the virus transfer after entering? An animal experiment reveals the possible nasolacrimal routes of SARS-CoV-2 transfer from the ocular surface. Five rhesus macaques were inoculated with 1×106 50% tissue-culture infectious doses of SARS-CoV-2. Only in the conjunctival swabs of rhesus macaques inoculated via conjunctival route could the SARS-CoV-2 be detected. Conjunctival swabs of the rhesus macaques that were inoculated via intragastric or intratracheal route were negative. Three days post conjunctival inoculation, rhesus macaques presented mild interstitial pneumonia. Autopsies showed that SARS-CoV-2 was detectable in the nasolacrimal system tissues, including the lacrimal gland, conjunctiva, nasal cavity, and throat, which connected the eyes and respiratory tract on anatomy.”

An additional macaque study had similar findings.

“Deng et al. showed that SARS-CoV-2 infection could be induced by ocular surface inoculation in an experimental animal model using macaques. Although the researchers detected the virus in conjunctival swabs only on the first day after inoculation, they continued to detect it in nasal and throat swabs 1-7 days after the inoculation. Their findings demonstrated that the viral load in the airway mucosa was much higher than that in the ocular surface. They euthanized and necropsied one of the conjunctival inoculated-animals and found that the virus had spread to the nasolacrimal system and ocular tissue, nasal cavity, pharynx, trachea, tissues in the oral cavity, tissues in the lower-left lobe of the lung, inguinal and perirectal lymph node, stomach, duode-num, cecum, and ileum. They also found a specific IgG antibody, indicating that the animal was infected with SARS-CoV-2 via the ocular surface route.”

While the nasolacrimal route is the primary focus in most current research, the blood-retinal barrier (BRB) is also discussed as a possible pathway.

“Once it reaches the ocular surface, SARS-CoV-2 could invade the conjunctiva and iris under the mediation of ACE2 and CD147, another possible receptor for SARS-CoV-2 on host cells. De Figueiredo et al described the following possible pathways. After reaching blood capillaries and then choroid plexus, the virus reaches the blood-retinal barrier (BRB), which expresses both ACE2 and CD147 in retinal pigment epithelial cells and blood vessel endothelial cells. Since CD147 mediates the breakdown of neurovascular blood barriers, the virus can cross the BRB and enter into blood.”

RSV

There has been a push recently to bring back masks for Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV), especially in schools, as this pathogen largely impacts youth populations, yet ocular transmission is a proven method of infectivity for RSV.

In this paper, intranasal dosing of the given pathogen resulted in onset of illness for nearly all respiratory pathogens studied. It reviews transmission routes and minimum infective dose for Influenza, Rhinovirus, Coxsackievirus, Adenovirus, RSV, Enteric Viruses, Rotavirus, Norovirus, and Echovirus, including ocular transmission.

“The infective doses of rhinoviruses in the nose and eyes are thought to be comparable because the virus does not infect the eyes but appears to travel from the eyes to the nasal mucosa via the tear duct.”

“Hall et al. (1981) investigated the infectivity of RSV A2 strain administered by nose, eye, and mouth in adult volunteers. They reported that the virus may infect by eye or nose and both routes appear to be equally sensitive. A dose of 1.6 × 105 TCID50 infected three of the four volunteers given either into the eyes or nose while only one out of the eight were infected via mouth inoculation, and this was thought to be due to secondary spread of the virus.”

“RSV A2 had poor infectivity when administered via the mouth but was shown to infect by eye and nose and both routes appear to be equally sensitive to the virus.”

“Bynoe et al. (1961) found that colds could be produced almost as readily by applying virus by nasal and conjunctival swabs as by giving nasal drops to volunteers.”

Would masks save schools from RSV circulation? Most kids have robust immune systems, with a very, very small percentage of the youth population undergoing chemotherapy or taking immunosuppressives, who usually are not on campus for in-person learning. But for those seeming protection and in-person instruction, we must not set them up for immune bombardment by offering a false sense of security while feigning ignorance of other viable transmission routes. Masks are not the answer.

Summary

Ocular transmission of respiratory pathogens hasn’t been a focal point of study, but with other pathogens and mounting research on SARS-CoV-2 showing such ease of systemic onset for this transmission route, more attention should be given to this area of research.

Consider all of the people you’ve seen donning masks or respirators over these past three years, assured in the merit of their virtue. How many still got sick? Did you ever once see someone donning goggles? Are we ever going to get around to discussing exhaustion of the hierarchy of controls, or are actual mitigating measures too taboo, too fringe?

TLDR: Ocular transmission is a viable method of transmission for SARS-CoV-2. Masks are not source control. Even N95s aren’t going to fix this. And all child masks are unregulated, untested, unethical, and unsafe, with zero efficacy, fit, term of wear, or medical clearance standards, and with ocular transmission being a proven route of transmission for RSV, masks aren’t going to fix that issue, either.

Author

  • Megan Mansell

    Megan Mansell is a former district education director over special populations integration, serving students who are profoundly disabled, immunocompromised, undocumented, autistic, and behaviorally challenged; she also has a background in hazardous environs PPE applications. She is experienced in writing and monitoring protocol implementation for immunocompromised public sector access under full ADA/OSHA/IDEA compliance. She can be reached at [email protected]

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Brownstone Institute

Curious: Angela Merkel’s September 2019 Visit to Wuhan

Published on

From the Brownstone Institute

BY Robert KogonROBERT KOGON

In a much-tweeted soundbite from the recent Congressional hearing on the origins of Covid-19, former CDC director Robert Redfield noted that three unusual events occurred in Wuhan in September 2019 suggesting a lab leak from the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV).

But another, in retrospect, highly curious event also occurred in Wuhan in September 2019: namely, none other than then German Chancellor Angela Merkel paid a visit to the city and, more specifically, to the Tongji Hospital on the left bank of the Yangtze River. The hospital is also known as the German-Chinese Friendship Hospital.

The below photo from Germany’s Deutsche Presse Agentur shows Chancellor Merkel being greeted by nurses at the hospital reception on September 7, 2019. (Source: Süddeutsche Zeitung.)

A 2021 House Foreign Affairs Committee Minority Report, referring in greater detail to the same events as Redfield, concludes that a lab leak took place at the WIV sometime prior to September 12, when, notably, the WIV’s virus and sample database was mysteriously taken offline in the middle of the night (p. 5 and passim).

What an incredible coincidence that the German Chancellor was visiting Wuhan’s Tongji Hospital at almost precisely the time when, according to Redfield’s speculations, a potentially catastrophic event was taking place across the river at the Wuhan Institute of Virology! This was, moreover, merely three months before the first officially acknowledged cases of Covid-19 began to turn up in the city.

But the coincidence is in fact even more incredible. For when those first cases did begin to turn up in Wuhan in early December 2019, they did not in fact turn up in the vicinity of the Wuhan Institute of Virology on the right bank of the Yangtze, but rather in the direct vicinity of Tongji Hospital on the left bank!

The below mapping of the initial cluster of cases from Science magazine makes this clear. The black dot is the epicenter of the cluster. Cross #5 marks the location of Tongji Hospital.

And that is not all. As discussed in my earlier article on “The Other Lab in Wuhan,”although the WIV was relatively far removed from the outbreak – say around 10 kilometers from the epicenter as the crow flies — there is in fact another virus research lab in Wuhan that is located right in the area of the initial cluster.

The lab in question is the German-Chinese Joint Laboratory of Infection and Immunity – or, as its German co-director Ulf Dittmer has also called it, the “Essen-Wuhan Laboratory for Virus Research” – and the Chinese host institution of the German-Chinese Joint Lab is none other than the Tongji-Hospital-affiliated Tongji Medical College.

Per Google maps, Tongji Medical College is located around one kilometer due north of the hospital. Have another look at the above map keeping in mind the indicated scale. This would put it nearly right at the epicenter of the outbreak!

According to German and Chinese sources, however, the lab is in fact located at another hospital affiliated with Tongji Medical College: Wuhan Union Hospital. The location of Union Hospital is marked by cross #6 on the Science map: still in the cluster, but a bit further away from the epicenter.

A press release on the website of the University of Duisburg-Essen, the German co-sponsor of the lab, notes that:

The Joint Lab is fully equipped for virus research. It is a BSL2 safety laboratory with access to BSL3 conditions. German and Chinese members of the lab have access to a large sample collection form [sic.] patients of the Department of Infectious Diseases for their research.

BSL stands for “biosafety level.”

The below photo from a German article on the Essen-Wuhan collaboration shows the virologist Xin Zheng of Union Hospital, Tongji Medical School, at work in the joint lab. Per the cited source, Xin did her doctorate at the University of Duisburg-Essen.

Could SARS-CoV-2 have leaked from the joint lab?

And, while we’re at it, was gain-of-function research being conducted at the lab? We do not know, but we do know that the German members of the lab will, at any rate, have been in contact with a nearby lab where it was being conducted. For the Wuhan Institute of Virology lists the University of Duisburg-Essen as one of its partner institutions.

Furthermore, in addition to its own partnership with the University of Duisburg-Essen, Tongji Medical College also has a longstanding academic exchange program with the Charité research and teaching hospital in Berlin of none other than Christian Drosten: the German virologist whose controversial and ultrasensitive PCR protocol, in effect, guaranteed that the Covid-19 outbreak would acquire the status of a “pandemic.”

As discussed in “The Other Lab in Wuhan,” Drosten appears as one of the scientists participating in the so-called “Fauci emails,” and of all the participants, he is the most vehement denier of the possibility of a lab leak.

In remarks in the German press, Drosten has admitted that he began working on his Covid-19 testing protocol before any Covid-19 cases had even officially been reported to the WHO! He says he did so based on information he had from unnamed virologist colleagues working in Wuhan. (Source: Die Berliner Zeitung.)

Speaking of which, Drosten can be seen below in the company of none other than Shi Zhengli of the Wuhan Institute of Virology, the scientist whose research on bat coronaviruses is suspected of being at the origin of a Covid-19 lab leak.

The picture comes from a “Sino-German Symposium on Infectious Diseases” that took place in Berlin in 2015 and that was organized by Ulf Dittmer of the University of Duisburg-Essen. Dittmer, as noted above, is the co-director of the Essen-Wuhan lab, which would be founded two years later. The symposium was funded by the German Ministry of Health.

Dittmer is the bald man with the striped shirt in the full group picture of symposium participants below. (Source: University of Duisburg-Essen.) The jovial bearded man with the bowtie in the next row is none other than Thomas Mertens, the current chair of the “Standing Committee on Vaccination” of the German health authority, the Robert Koch Institute.

The Berlin symposium was held one year after the US government declared a moratorium on gain-of-function research.

As it so happens, Drosten himself has been involved in gain-of-function research, as the below screen shot from the webpage of the German RAPID project makes clear.

RAPID stands for “Risk Assessment in Prepandemic Respiratory Infectious Diseases.” Further information from the German Ministry of Education and Research expressly states that Drosten’s Charité hospital does not merely oversee, but is directly involved (beteiligt) in RAPID sub-project 2: i.e. “identification of host factors by loss-of-function and gain-of-function experiments.”


Imagine for a moment that then President Donald Trump paid a visit to Wuhan in September 2019, at the very time that a lab leak is suspected to have occurred in the city.

And imagine that, while there, he made a stop at a hospital that is affiliated with a medical school located in the very epicenter of the Covid-19 outbreak that would officially occur three months later.

Imagine that this medical school, furthermore, runs a joint, BSL-3 capable, virus research lab with an American university – let’s say, for example, Ralph Baric’s University of North Carolina – and that Baric and his colleagues were themselves conducting research right in Wuhan!

And imagine that the American university in question is also a partner institution of the Wuhan Institute of Virology (Baric’s University of North Carolina is not in fact) and that the local Wuhan medical school also has a partnership with, say, the NIH.

And imagine that there is even a photo of none other than Anthony Fauci of the NIH with none other than Shi Zhengli of the Wuhan Institute of Virology at a joint “Sino-American Symposium on Infectious Diseases” in Washington that was organized by Baric and funded by the US Department of Health four years before the Covid-19 outbreak. And imagine, for good measure, that, say, Rochelle Walensky was also present at the event.

Imagine, finally, that Fauci had not just (allegedly) provided funding for gain-of-function research, but was himself directly involved in it.

The above concatenation of circumstances would undoubtedly be regarded as what some members of the US intelligence community might call “slam-dunk” proof of US complicity in any lab leak of the SARS-CoV-2 virus that may have occurred in Wuhan.

Why does the ample evidence of manifold German connections to and indeed involvement in virus research in Wuhan not merit at least the same degree of scrutiny, if not to say of certainty?

Author

  • Robert Kogon

    Robert Kogon is a pen name for a widely-published financial journalist, a translator, and researcher working in Europe.Follow him at Twitter here. He writes at edv1694.substack.com.

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