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Top NIH official admitted to COVID origins scientists he used personal email, deleted messages, and scrubbed Fauci's 'fingerprints' to avoid transparency: Report
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Top NIH official admitted to COVID origins scientists he used personal email, deleted messages, and scrubbed Fauci's 'fingerprints' to avoid transparency: Report

A top adviser to Anthony Fauci at the National Institutes of Health appears to have tried his best to ensure the American people wouldn't know what he and the scientists looking into the origins of COVID-19 were privately discussing while publicly downplaying the lab-leak theory. His best efforts at obfuscation were evidently not good enough.

Records obtained by the Republican-led Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic have revealed a troubling admission by David M. Morens, senior scientific adviser to the head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, who was up until recently Fauci, reported the Intercept.

Morens admitted in correspondence with Fauci's gang of like-minded virologists that he opted to use a personal email account and delete the exchanges thereon to evade Freedom of Information Act requests.

"As you know, I try to always communicate on gmail because my NIH email is FOIA’d constantly," Morens reportedly wrote to the top scientists involved in figuring out where COVID-19 came from, including the head of EcoHealth Alliance, Peter Daszak, whose subcontractor Ben Hu conducted deadly gain-of-function experiments on coronaviruses at the Wuhan Institute of Virology and was reportedly one of the first infected with COVID-19; virologists Robert Garry, Kristian Andersen, and Edward Holmes, who were authors on a Fauci-commissioned and -edited report used to downplay the lab-leak theory; and others.

"Stuff sent to my gmail gets to my phone," continued Morens, "but not my NIH computer."

Suspecting that his Gmail account had been hacked by "[gain-of-function] assholes," Morens told the lab-leak deniers that he might have to "occasionally email" from his NIH account.

"Don't worry," Morens reassured. "Just send to any of my adresses and I will delete anything I don't want to see in the New York Times."

Morens revealed that he wasn't alone in the desire to hide the truth in a July 2021 email, where he noted, "Tony [Fauci] doesn't want his fingerprints on origin stories."

Just as Fauci apparently did not want his fingerprints on origin stories as it regards the possible manufacture of a deadly pathogen that killed well over 1 million Americans, Daszak similarly can be seen in the email exchanges panicking over losing control of the narrative.

In a September 7 email, Daszak wrote, "The lab leakers are already stirring up bullshit lines of attack that will bring more negative publicity our way — which is what this is about — a way to line up the [gain-of-function] attack on Fauci, or the 'risky research' attack on all of us."

Morens responded, "Do not rule out suing these assholes for murder."

In addition to advocating for litigation against experts holding alternative viewpoints, Morens used his official capacity at the NIAID to "disparage reporters and belittle his fellow scientists," according to the Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic.

In one instance, he stated, "Ebright and his ilk are not only NOT experts but are harmful demogogues [sic]."

Dr. Richard H. Ebright is an esteemed professor of chemical biology at Rutgers University who likely drew Morens' ire for having highlighted a few of Fauci's apparent lies to Congress and for his sharp criticism of dangerous gain-of-function experiments.

The subcommittee indicated "these are just a few egregious examples," noting Thursday they had requested all of Morens' personal email and cellphone records related to COVID-19 origins.

Among the requested documents and communications requested were any to, from, or referencing the Wuhan lab, EcoHealth Alliance and its subcontractor Ben Hu, or the other two patients zero, Yu Ping and Yan Zhu.

Select Subcommittee Chairman Brad Wenstrup (R-Ohio) penned a letter to Morens Thursday, stating that these documents "suggest you may have used your personal e-mail to avoid transparency and the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), potentially intentionally deleted federal records, and acted in your official capacity to disparage your fellow scientists, including by encouraging litigation against them."

"Further, your e-mails also raise concerns that you may have knowledge or information suggesting Dr. Anthony Fauci ... wished to influence the COVID-19 origins narrative without his 'fingerprints,'" wrote Wenstrup.

The Intercept indicated Morens had not responded to a request for comment. Scott Amey, the general counsel at the nonpartisan Project on Government Oversight, told the Intercept that Morens may have revealed himself to have violated agency regulations as well as civil and criminal record retention laws."

"His comments in that email are certainly worth an investigation by the agency, the agency inspector general, the National Archives and Records Administration, and the Department of Justice," said Amey.

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Joseph MacKinnon

Joseph MacKinnon

Joseph MacKinnon is a staff writer for Blaze News.
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