The coronavirus pandemic most likely began with a laboratory leak, a U.S. Energy Department classified intelligence report now before the White House and key Congress members sets out.
The Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday the Energy Department’s revised assessment of the pandemic’s origins is based on fresh intelligence noted in an update to a 2021 document by Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines’s office.
The WSJ further states while the investigation is ongoing, more authorities are coming to the lab leak hypothesis however there is as yet no unanimous decision:
The new report highlights how different parts of the intelligence community have arrived at disparate judgments about the pandemic’s origin. The Energy Department now joins the Federal Bureau of Investigation in saying the virus likely spread via a mishap at a Chinese laboratory.
Four other agencies, along with a national intelligence panel, still judge that it was likely the result of a natural transmission, and two are undecided.
The report goes on to say the Energy Department made its judgment with “low confidence,” according to people who have read the classified report, however it does align with previous speculation about the exact origin of the virus, as Breitbart News reported.
“Isn’t it strange that this once-in-a-century bat coronavirus pandemic just happened to emerge within a few miles of China’s biggest laboratory researching bat coronaviruses? Shouldn’t we at least look at that lab?” https://t.co/qjtCT61DGI
— Breitbart News (@BreitbartNews) May 26, 2021
Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) doubled down on questions addressing the origins of the Chinese coronavirus as far back as 2021, noting the lab leak hypothesis was “always reasonable” but quickly denounced as a conspiracy theory by “reporters & activists in white lab coats.”
“The common-sense case for a lab leak is the same as it was in January 2020, when I first mentioned the possibility,” Cotton said then.
U.S. officials reportedly have since declined to give details on the fresh intelligence and analysis that led the Energy Department to change its position.
They added while the Energy Department and the FBI each say an unintended lab leak is most likely, they arrived at those conclusions for different reasons, the WSJ concludes.
The Chinese government has not responded to requests for comment about whether there has been any change in its views on the coronavirus origins.