The World Health Organization's (WHO) reluctance to pursue what might have been its most promising investigation lead raises questions, considering that the deleted Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV) database is generally regarded as the most probable explanation of a viral laboratory breach.
According to a recent report published in The Epoch Times, the Wuhan Institute of Virology's (WIV) viral sequencing database was taken down on Sept. 12, 2019. The lost database, which has never been retrieved publicly, included approximately 22,000 previously unreported bat and rodent viral samples and genomes.
The database also included critical information that may help determine if the facility in Wuhan, China, had the "progenitor virus" for COVID-19.
The value of having access to the WIV database was shown earlier this year when "sequences" from early COVID-19 patients were retrieved from another "dataset" that was reportedly wiped in June 2020 from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) database at the request of a Chinese researcher. That piece of information, however, proved that the outbreak did not originate at the Huanan Seafood Market as claimed by Chinese officials.
In February 2021, WHO sent an investigation team to Wuhan. According to the team's report, they "reviewed data collected through the China National Centre for Bioinformation integrated database on all available coronaviruses sequences."
However, the team did not seek an investigation of the WIV's virus database, which was gathered, kept, and subsequently deleted.
The WHO's investigation team reportedly didn't ask to examine the deleted Wuhan database as Peter Daszak, President of EcoHealth Alliance, an NIH-funded organization, told them that it has no significant information about the origins of the virus.
Likewise, the WHO's refusal to review the Wuhan Institute's database seems unusually suspicious given that a September 2019 WHO report explicitly warned of the potential of a worldwide pandemic.
This report, which said that "the world is not prepared for a fast-moving, virulent respiratory pathogen pandemic," was released only six days after the Wuhan Institute wiped its database of deadly pathogens.
According to long-time contributors Jeff Carlson, who worked as an analyst for more than two decades, and Hans Mahncke, a published law book and research author whose works have been published in a variety of international journals:
"Despite the potential importance of the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV) data, there have been no known requests from public health officials to reinstate or examine the Institute's database, and none of the major health officials and experts involved in the pandemic response, such as Dr. Anthony Fauci, British pharmaceutical trust Director Jeremy Farrar or NIH Director Dr. Francis Collins, have publicly acknowledged the database's existence."
They also noticed that the WHO report's authors seem to be missing crucial information regarding the viral outbreak, since their claims are largely dependent on John Hopkins research dated September 10, 2019.
"But the fact that the WHO's September report warned of the potential for a global viral outbreak at the same time that the Wuhan Institute deleted all its dangerous pathogen data should have caught WHO's immediate attention," they noted.
They went on to say that the "timing" of the loss of the viral sequence database was crucial in light of the subsequent events.
A Harvard Medical School research observed an increase in hospital traffic in Wuhan in October 2019.
"Clearly, there was some level of social disruption taking place well before what was previously identified as the start of the novel coronavirus pandemic." said John Brownstein, the research's lead author.
As reported by the U.S. Consul General in Wuhan, Russell Westergard, the U.S. Consulate in Wuhan "knew that the city had been struck by what was thought to be an unusually vicious flu season."
"The disease worsened in November," Westergard would later write.
He also said that his team informed the U.S. Embassy in Beijing when Wuhan municipal authorities closed public schools in mid-December to contain the virus.
The hospitalizations occurred about the same time Westergard was issuing his COVID-like warnings, in early November.
This is also the same period when Huang Yanling, a researcher at the WIV, vanished. She was believed to have been patient-zero. Later, the Wuhan Institute removed her profile.
Naturally, there is much disagreement and contradictory information about when the COVID outbreak started. One story quoted Chinese government authorities as saying the first incidence occurred on Nov. 17, 2019.
A comprehensive scholarly study from The Lancet said that the first documented COVID case began on December 1, 2019, and that the patient had reportedly no known connections to the Huanan Seafood Market.
These earlier dates conflict with the WHO's first official COVID diagnosis date of Dec. 8, 2019.
Wuhan's CDC has also relocated its lab on Dec. 2, only a few hundred yards from the Huanan Seafood Market, as the infection in Wuhan seemed to be approaching a critical stage.
While the WHO's chief virus investigator, Peter Ben Embarek, has privately expressed his worries to a Danish documentary team, the lab has garnered minimal public coverage since its opening.
The Wuhan CDC kept its unexpected lab relocation secret and out of the media. While touring the Wuhan CDC lab, Embarek observed that everything seemed brand new.
The WHO report said that the Wuhan CDC lab "reported no storage nor laboratory activities on CoVs or other bat viruses preceding the outbreak" and that "such moves can be disruptive for the operations of any laboratory"
WHO's claim, however, contradicts the work of Tian Junhua, the lab's resident coronavirus researcher.
In 2017, Tian boasted to a Chinese publication that he had personally caught 10,000 bats in southern Chinese caverns for his Wuhan CDC facility. Tian was said to be well renowned in academia for his work on bat coronaviruses. He has also reportedly published at least 14 scholarly papers alongside Edward Holmes, a scientist associated with the WHO and said to be a proponent of "natural origins" with extensive Chinese connections.
In light of all of these events, Carlson and Mahncke reached the following conclusion.
"The deletion of the WIV's database along with other evidence, including the observations of the U.S. Consulate in Wuhan, would seem to suggest that the outbreak in Wuhan began earlier than has been generally reported," they wrote.
"This raises questions as to why the WHO failed to give this information serious consideration in the preparation of its report on the origins and timing of the virus," they added.