Last year, as the China Virus was just beginning to spread across the US, I suggested in these pages that it might have leaked from the Wuhan Institute of Virology. That’s China’s top lab for researching and engineering dangerous pathogens, especially coronaviruses.
No sooner did the story appear than it began to be attacked from all sides.
China issued heated denials, claiming the virus had jumped from bats to humans at the city’s seafood market. The lab a few miles down the road, Beijing officials huffed, had nothing — zip, zilch, nada — to do with it.
I was not surprised that Beijing tried to shuffle off its responsibility for the pandemic onto our little furry flying friends. I mean, the alternative was potentially being held liable for millions of deaths and countless trillions of dollars in damage to the world’s economy.
But I was taken aback when The Lancet, one of the world’s most prestigious medical journals, published a letter signed by “27 prominent public health scientists” that dismissed my lab origin thesis as a “conspiracy theory.”