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Was Coronavirus an escaped Chinese Bioweapon?

Summary:
There have been various theories that Covid-19 is a disease developed by China.  The epicentre of the Coronovirus outbreak was in Wuhan which happens to be the home of the Wuhan Institute of Virology, a major centre of Chinese virus research.  Given that all Chinese academic and business activity is also Chinese State activity it is easy to join the dots and assume that Coronavirus was a bioweapons programme that escaped. The main reason for denying that Covid-19 is a bioweapon is that those working on it in China have been quite public about what they are doing as have those outside China - see for instance Lab Made Coronavirus Triggers Debate (2015).  What they have been doing is "gain of function" studies in which they mutate viruses to investigate what changes are needed to make them

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There have been various theories that Covid-19 is a disease developed by China.  The epicentre of the Coronovirus outbreak was in Wuhan which happens to be the home of the Wuhan Institute of Virology, a major centre of Chinese virus research.  Given that all Chinese academic and business activity is also Chinese State activity it is easy to join the dots and assume that Coronavirus was a bioweapons programme that escaped.
Was Coronavirus an escaped Chinese Bioweapon?
The main reason for denying that Covid-19 is a bioweapon is that those working on it in China have been quite public about what they are doing as have those outside China - see for instance Lab Made Coronavirus Triggers Debate (2015).  What they have been doing is "gain of function" studies in which they mutate viruses to investigate what changes are needed to make them more lethal.  When I first read about such experiments several years ago my jaw dropped, I thought "what if the virus escapes"?  This was the first thought and also the first thought of many others, virologists included - see Nature article for details of action being taken to limit gain of function experimentation.

We will never know whether Sars-CoV-2 virus is a laboratory escape and at this moment we certainly do not want to hunt down virologists who are experts on the virus to "bring them to justice".  But we do need politicians to work together with international virology bodies to regulate "gain of function" experiments even if they are entirely unrelated to the coronavirus pandemic.

Of course, in a state run nation like China any gain of function experiment that might yield a bioweapon stands a good chance of being developed as a bioweapon.  China is a real problem and the West is being astonishingly negligent of its own security in its soft treatment of this National Socialist state.  Trade does not and has not brought liberty to China, it has just given it the resources to be a first rank enemy.

Was Coronavirus an escaped Chinese Bioweapon?
Quarantine in China

18/3/2020

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