COVID-19 and the panicked response to it had a disastrous effect on the world, from direct and indirect casualties – deaths from disease and from economic devastation. Now people are searching for the culprit to blame. Some are zeroing in on an American scientist who allegedly created and patented the SARS-CoV-2 virus years before the pandemic.

Let’s keep in context that genetic engineering is supposed to be the miracle that will cure all diseases. And mRNA technology is supposed to create the platform to develop vaccines against emerging pandemics within weeks of sequencing the genome of the pathogen. With human population increasing and encroaching on wildlife, there is the danger that zoonoses will cross the species barrier and infect humans. Consider HIV, Ebola, H1N1 “bird flu,” “swine flu,” SARS-CoV-1, Zika, various types of encephalitis, etc.

Nobel Prizes have been awarded for CRISPR gene-modifying technology and for using pseudouridine in mRNA to keep it from breaking down. No one has accused these scientists; their groundbreaking contributions are applauded.

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We also know that biological warfare has been utilized for centuries and has been called the “poor man’s atomic bomb.” Clandestine research has been carried on for decades – by the Soviet Union, the U.K., the U.S., China and probably others. It is of course very dangerous, and agents have escaped from labs. But the forces converging on one particular person apparently have the idea that it would be very clever to have the mastermind working in the open at an American university instead of in a secret Ukrainian biolab or the Chinese military lab close to the Wuhan Institute of Virology.

“Case closed!” announced at least one journalist, supplying links to a couple of “smoking gun” lectures, including one billed as “The Synthetic Creation & Genetic Engineering of SARS in 2007.” So, I watched them, from start to finish. I learned some things about molecular biology and awesome genetic engineering techniques.

Labs were studying coronaviruses because they were considered a likely candidate for a species-jumping pandemic. In fact, this had seemingly occurred already. One wants to know how the virus gets into human cells, replicates and causes damage. One lab altered the genome in various ways to get it to replicate in cultures of human respiratory epithelial cells. This could be called “gain-of-function” research. From this, the lab created some monoclonal antibody cocktails. Remember those, touted as treatment for a time? It also investigated what kind of vaccine might neutralize the virus.

Much of the lecture concerned what I would call “LOSS-of-function” research: how to “deoptimize” replication and attenuate pathogenesis. How can you scramble the transcription so that the short sequences needed to regulate the process don’t communicate? Is it possible to develop a “universal attenuator”? That would be a hugely beneficial breakthrough.

There are three possible origins of the SARS-CoV-2 virus: 1) Nature; 2) Accidental release from a lab; and 3) Deliberate release. Throughout history bad pathogens have come from Nature, perfectly adapted to a human host. But there is an “infinitesimal” probability that the sequences in SARS-CoV-2 came from Nature. Very odd – when this argument is used for Intelligent Design it is called unscientific. Yet, according to a survey of experts by the Global Catastrophic Risk Institute and others, the majority believe in a natural origin. These opinions are hardly unbiased since most experts who are still employed or funded agree with the official narrative.

The virus could well have come from a lab – but which variant and which lab? There are hundreds or thousands of variants out there, and hundreds of scientists have been working on bioengineering technology. There are thousands of possibly relevant patents, including “disclosure” patents, which basically prevent someone else from obtaining a patent. Before accepting the assertion that patent #xxxx is the smoking gun, read it to be sure it isn’t about gastroenteritis in pigs. Also, go to the primary source before citing articles in the literature.

The origin of COVID-19 is clearly important, as we want to prevent it from happening again. But sophisticated military intelligence would probably be required to discover exactly what happened – and what if military intelligence is complicit? What is the likelihood that the creator of a biological warfare weapon would register a patent for it?

If a heinous crime has been committed, the public is relieved to hear that the perp is in custody. But what if the suspect is innocent, and all the effort is focused on obtaining circumstantial evidence to convict him, while the real culprit is free, planning another crime?

What if the attack on one suspect is either a deliberate or an unintentional diversion from real, plainly identified and unquestionably responsible miscreants – the ones who suppressed early treatment, created exaggerated or fabricated case counts, destroyed livelihoods, enforced rigid and harmful hospital and lockdown protocols, coerced people to accept a vaccine, bribed doctors to get their patients injected, hid vaccine adverse reaction reports, or censored the truth?

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