Let evidence, not talk radio, determine whether the outbreak started in a lab

By May 15, 2020

The president and his secretary of state made a startling claim last week: that there is enough evidence to suggest with a high degree of confidence that the Wuhan Institute of Virology is the source of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic.

That declaration followed a frenzy of activity of cable TV and talk radio. On April 15, Fox News reported that sources believe patient zero worked at the laboratory and then went into the population in Wuhan. The next day, Rush Limbaugh ran an episode of his show titled “All the Coronavirus Taboos You Can’t Talk About” in which he reiterated the patient zero-Wuhan lab theory. Several days after that, Rudy Giuliani pushed the connection on his radio show where his guest even proposed that the subsequent spread of the virus to other countries was a malicious and deliberate act by China.

A week after that, President Trump would make his announcement.

The only problem is that neither the intelligence nor the science supports the claim.

Read the full opinion at the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists.