‘Unnatural contagion’: Israeli expert breaks with consensus of silence on Wuhan virus

FPI / January 13, 2021


There is a strong possibility that the coronavirus escaped from a Chinese laboratory, said a retired Israeli military officer who is also a microbiologist and expert on chemical and biological warfare.

SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes Covid-19, is thought by an Israeli expert to have a genomic origin of a Chinese bat virus that underwent extensive adaptation to humans before infecting patient zero. / Associated Press / File

Lt. Col. Dany Shoham was among the first to suggest that the Wuhan coronavirus outbreak may be linked to China’s military research.

According to Shoham, the probability of human intervention in creating the coronavirus is higher than naturally occurring, spontaneous evolutionary adaptation. However, he said Chinese secrecy, deception and obfuscation about the virus origin are preventing intelligence operatives and scientists from learning where the virus outbreak began.

“Many American scientists are reluctant to consider the theory that the virus escaped from a laboratory over fears that doing so would upset relations with Chinese scientific institutions,” security correspondent Bill Gertz noted in a Jan. 6 report for the Washington Times.

In an article published last month, Shoham noted that the initial theory that the virus behind the Covid-19 pandemic occurred naturally is coming under strong doubt by both scientists and intelligence analysts.

“The genomic origin of the index virus (the strain that infected patient zero) has been determined to be a Chinese bat virus that underwent extensive pre-adaptation to humans, including continual transmissibility, prior to infecting patient zero,” Col. Shoham, now with the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies, an Israeli think tank, wrote in a journal article.

“The open question is how, where, and when such exceptional genomic pre-adaptation took place,” he stated.

The debate over the virus origin has the potential for explosive disclosures, Shoham said, yet intelligence agencies around the world so far have remained largely silent.

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