Biden orders U.S. intelligence community to gather and analyze information on origin of new coronavirus

President Joe Biden on Wednesday (May 26) ordered the intelligence community to take a closer look at two plausible scenarios for the origin of the Chinese Communist virus (COVID-19) pandemic within 90 days.

In a statement issued Wednesday, Biden said that early in the year he tasked the intelligence community with preparing “an updated report on their analysis of the origin of COVID-19, including whether it was transmitted by contact with infected animals or caused by a laboratory accident.”

“As of today, the U.S. intelligence community has combined these two possibilities, but has not reached a definitive conclusion on this issue.” Biden said, “Here is their current position: ‘While two agencies in the intelligence community lean toward the former scenario, and one agency leans more toward the latter – each agency considers it low or moderately likely -‘ -but most agencies do not believe there is enough information to assess whether this scenario is more likely than the other.”

Biden’s latest directive to investigate the origins of the COVID virus pandemic comes after recent increased coverage in the U.S. mainstream media of a possible virus leak from the Wuhan virus lab. The virus lab leak hypothesis was initially dismissed as a conspiracy theory by the mainstream media.

“I have now ordered the intelligence community to redouble its efforts to gather and analyze information that can bring us closer to a definitive conclusion and report back to me within 90 days,” Biden said.

“As part of the report, I asked for areas that may require further investigation, including China-specific issues. I also asked that the U.S. national laboratories and other U.S. government agencies be included to work together to complement the intelligence community’s efforts. I asked that the intelligence community keep Congress fully informed of its efforts.” He added.

Dr. Rochelle Walensky, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), said during a Senate hearing last week that the lab leak was “certainly” a “possibility.

White House officials said Tuesday that China has not been “fully transparent” in its global investigation into the origin of COVID and that a full investigation is needed to determine whether the virus that killed nearly 3.5 million people came from nature or a laboratory.

“We need to get to the bottom of this, whatever the answer is.” Andy Slavitt, senior White House COVID adviser, told the media at Tuesday’s outbreak briefing, “We need a fully transparent process from China, we need assistance from (the World Health Organization) on this issue, and we don’t feel that we’re getting that right now.”

White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Monday that the U.S. has repeatedly called on the WHO to support “expert-led assessments of the origins of the pandemic, free from interference or politicization.”

“In the first phase of the investigation, (WHO) was not given the data, was not provided the information.” She said, “And we now want WHO to move into a more transparent independent second phase (of the origin of the virus) investigation.”

The Office of the Director of National Intelligence, which leads the nation’s 18 intelligence agencies, did not immediately respond to media requests for comment by press time. The Chinese Communist Embassy in Washington, D.C., also had no immediate response.