Dr. Anthony Fauci sat for a seven-hour deposition last week as part of a lawsuit brought by the attorneys general of Missouri and Louisiana. The suit claims that the Biden administration colluded with social media platforms to censor information surrounding the origins and circumstances of the Covid-19 pandemic, as well as information that went against CDC guidelines and mandates around vaccines and efficacy masks.
Fauci, the NIAID and chief medical advisor to President Biden (and others), didn’t say much. In fact he used the term “I cannot recall,” or some variation, over 190 times. Never mind that in an outgoing op-ed for the New York Times, Fauci says he can “clearly recall the first time (he) drove on to the bucolic NIH campus in Bethesda, Maryland, in June of 1968 as a twenty-seven-year-old newly minted physician.” Fauci was clearly advised by his sitting counsel not to give any answers that give weight to the prosecuting AGs. For what reason, legally or not, it’s a mystery.
But there was one exchange in particular where Fauci’s memory failed him that should raise eyebrows. It involved changing the entire trajectory of the pandemic narrative, the possibility of a lab leak from the Wuhan Institute of Virology and Fauci’s attempts to steer the conversation around such a possibility. Even today Fauci is adamant that the pandemic’s origin was zoonotic (meaning the virus was transferred naturally from an animal to humans).
On January 31, 2020, Fauci sent an email to virologist Kristian Andersen and director of the Welcome Trust Jeremy Farrar, a UK health research foundation. The email contained the text of an article from Science and outlined the hypothesis that the SARS-CoV-2 (the Covid-19 coronavirus) not only leaked from a laboratory in Wuhan, China, but was also potentially engineered.
In a now famous email, Andersen replied. “the unusual features of the virus make up a really small part of the genome (<0.1%) so one has to look really closely at all the sequences to see that some of the features (potentially) look engineered.” In his testimony Fauci confirms that exchange, but then goes on to say he cannot recall if anyone else, including former CDC director general Robert Redfield had raised those concerns. (The emails formed part of the basis of Ashley Rindsberg’s Spectator investigation into Fauci, Harvard and the Chinese Communist Party earlier this year.)
Fauci also recalled a phone call with both Andersen and Farrar concerning the origins of the virus. Fauci testified, “To my recollection, on that call, Jeremy and Christian said they had looked at or at least Christian did, possibly Jeremy and maybe one other scientist, and said that it is possible that there may have been a manipulation because it was an unusual virus.” Fauci goes on to say, “I and others said ‘well, that being the case, we should bring together a group of highly qualified international evolutionary virologists to discuss the issue, and to see what the way forward would be to try and clarify that.’”
That virologist pow-wow Fauci talks about did in fact happen, but when it came to explaining what was discussed in that conference, Fauci’s memory suddenly becomes hazy. A large conference call involving Fauci, Anderson, Farrar, Francis Collins of the NIH and others is confirmed to have happened to discuss the origins and path forward. What was actually said on that call between leading US and global health officials remains a mystery, but soon after, Jeremy Farrar emailed Fauci to say, “Can I suggest we shut down the call and then redial for five to ten minutes?” Fauci replied to this email with “yes” but in his testimony says, “You know, I don’t recall” if that shut down actually happened. Fauci agreed to sidebar with close associates and then could somehow not remember whether this important off-the-record huddle happened.
This is potentially important because it was following the meeting on this day that Fauci, along with Collins and others who had questioned the evolution of the virus, presented an unassailably unified front that the pandemic was caused by zoonotic origins. To this day, many of them maintain such a front, despite a growing mountain of evidence to the contrary.
This forty-eight-hour period appears to have changed the entire narrative of the pandemic as far as Fauci and his associates are concerned. His sudden amnesia is not good enough. It should not be good enough for Congress, and it should not be good enough for the public.