The novel coronavirus outbreak (COVID-19) has taken the world by storm. Countries around the globe have put their citizens on lockdown in an unprecedented attempt to slow the spread of a flu virus (called SARS-CoV-2). The potential economic ramifications of taking such extreme measures remain to be seen, but ultimately may be worse than the infectious disease itself. In the wake of the panic, civil liberties are being dismantled at an alarming rate. The U.S. Justice Department has reportedly asked Congress for the ability to detain people indefinitely without trial during emergencies. Daunting headlines in the news read: “People intentionally spreading coronavirus could be charged with terrorism.” In at least one country, emergency legislation to force vaccinate people appears to have been enacted, despite there being no vaccine to protect against the virus responsible for the outbreak. The gravity of the situation seems to be accelerating at a concerning rate. Amidst the coronavirus crisis, vaccine-proponent Bill Gates writes:
“Eventually we will have some digital certificates to show who has recovered or been tested recently or when we have a vaccine who has received it.”-Bill Gates
This statement by Gates prompts speculative internet articles titled: “Bill Gates will use microchip implants to fight coronavirus”.   Five days prior to making the above statement, Bill Gates stepped down from the board of directors at Microsoft and Berkshire Hathaway to dedicate more time to priorities including “global health and development”. With most of the world on lockdown, our civil liberties deteriorating rapidly, and impending “digital certificates” to track our vaccination records, it’s worth reflecting on how this all came to be.
November 12, 2015: A news article by the prestigious journal Nature states: “An experiment that created a hybrid version of a bat coronavirus – one related to the virus that causes SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) – has triggered renewed debate over whether engineering lab variants of viruses with possible pandemic potential is worth the risks.” The researchers created the virus by combining a surface protein found in horseshoe bats in China with the backbone of a SARS coronavirus. According to the article, a virologist pointed out that the researchers have created a novel virus that “grows remarkably well” in human cells, stating:
“If the virus escaped, nobody could predict the trajectory”
[An editors’ note dated March 2020 states: “We are aware that this story is being used as the basis for unverified theories that the novel coronavirus causing COVID-19 was engineered. There is no evidence that this is true”]
What is true however, is that scientists created a novel SARS coronavirus (SARS-CoV) in a lab that could replicate efficiently in human airway cells. Two of the co-authors of that study worked at the Key Laboratory of Special Pathogens and Biosafety at the Wuhan Institute of Virology in Wuhan, China. Coincidentally, Wuhan was the epicenter of the COVID-19 global pandemic and is also home to the Wuhan National Biosafety Laboratory – a biosafety level-4 facility – cleared to work with the world’s most dangerous pathogens.
March 31, 2019: Scientists working at the Canadian National Microbiology Lab sent live Ebola (and other deadly) viruses on an Air Canada flight to Beijing, China. A few months later, two Chinese research scientists were removed from the facility by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police who are currently investigating the case. One of the Chinese research scientists removed from the lab had traveled to the Wuhan National Biosafety Laboratory to train scientists and staff at the Wuhan facility.
December 10, 2019: A Chinese national was arrested at a Boston airport and charged with a criminal complaint for attempting to smuggle 21 vials of biological research to China.
January 28, 2020: The Chair of the Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology at Harvard University was arrested and charged with a criminal complaint. The Harvard chemistry professor allegedly became a “Strategic Scientist” at the Wuhan University of Technology in China and was a contractual participant in China’s Thousand Talents Plan – a program that seeks to “reward individuals for stealing proprietary information.”
October 18, 2019: The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation co-hosts “Event 201” – a simulated exercise of a global coronavirus pandemic. In this fictional simulation, an outbreak of a novel coronavirus transmitted from bats to people eventually becomes efficiently transmissible from person to person, leading to a severe pandemic. The disease starts quietly and slowly at first, but then starts to spread more rapidly in healthcare settings. In an eerie coincidence of events, this once fictional scenario becomes reality in the span of just a few months. Highlights of the pandemic exercise simulation can be seen in this video:
October 18-27, 2019: While Event 201 is taking place in New York City, the 7th Military World Games have just begun in Wuhan, China. This is the largest military sports event, and first international military multi-sport event, to be held in China with nearly 10,000 athletes from over 100 countries competing in 27 sports. A Chinese official would later make the accusation that the US Army may have brought the COVID-19 epidemic to Wuhan.
November 15, 2019: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) begins hiring public health advisors for their “Quarantine Program” in major cities across the United States. The timing of this job posting is especially curious given that the first case of COVID-19 was not yet known to have taken place anywhere in the world at this point in time.
December 1, 2019: The symptom onset of the first COVID-19 patient identified was on this date, according to an article published in the journal The Lancet. However, the South China Morning Post would later report that according to Chinese government data the first case of someone in China suffering from COVID-19 was traced back to November 17, 2019. ‘Patient zero’ has yet to be confirmed.
March 11, 2020: The World Health Organization (WHO) declares COVID-19 a ‘pandemic’. This results in $425 million worth of World Bank issued catastrophe bonds to default. These “first-ever” pandemic bonds issued by the World Bank were scheduled to mature on July 15, 2020. Both classes of bonds, originally issued in 2017, happened to cover coronavirus outbreaks. This means that investors who purchased these pandemic bonds will lose millions of dollars. For these investors, COVID-19 was an untimely and unfortunate coincidence.
March 31, 2020: In a twist of sick irony, coronavirus testing kits headed to the UK were reportedly found to be contaminated with COVID-19. A month earlier, a top U.S. scientist sounded the alarm about what he feared was contamination in a CDC lab that made test kits for the coronavirus. It is unclear what this contamination may have been, but it has resulted in an independent investigation of the CDC’s Atlanta laboratory.
April 3, 2020: As I write this, over a million cases and more than 58,000 deaths have been reported worldwide due to the COVID-19 pandemic. More than half the world is reportedly on lockdown. Despite this, the number of fatalities continue to increase in many parts of the world at an alarming pace. Where we go from here is anyone’s guess. In the words of Charles Eisenstein, we are standing at a crossroads with a hundred different paths radiating out in front of us. Which one will we choose?