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Why Are the Lab Escape Denialists Telling Such Brazen Lies?

Or how Peter Daszak is SARS-CoV-2's “Patient Zero for misinformation” but a media darling. Report: Jonathan Matthews

A recent Guardian headline instructs us to “ignore the conspiracy theories” about the potential role of a Wuhan biolab in the emergence of the virus that triggered the current pandemic. The accompanying article is the latest broadside from what the investigative journalist Sam Husseini has called the “loud crowd” involved in dangerous work with viruses, who have been busily denouncing any effort to scrutinise their work. Of these loud denialists, no one has been more vocal than the article’s author: Peter Daszak.

Since the start of the pandemic, Daszak has been all over the world’s media, as well as social media, decrying suggestions that SARS-CoV-2 might have come out of a lab as “preposterous”, “baseless”, “crackpot”, “conspiracy theories”, and “pure baloney”. And he has backed up these complete dismissals with a welter of questionable claims.