A new investigation has uncovered a “SARS-like” coronavirus experiment in a Montana lab in 2018. The study, funded by U.S. taxpayers, was conducted by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) under Dr. Anthony Fauci. This is yet another connection that has been found linking U.S. taxpayer funding to dangerous coronavirus research before the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The research took 12 Egyptian fruit bats from a roadside zoo in Maryland that is a short distance from Camp David. The research conducted at Rocky Mountain Laboratory infected the bats with the WIV1-CoV virus. The study determined two of the 12 bats had a “modest increase in coronavirus-specific antibodies post-challenge.” At the conclusion of the engagement, the research found that the WIV1-CoV virus was “unable to cause a robust infection” in the fruit bats. 

The White Coat Waste Project (WCWP) was behind the investigation and will continue to obtain more details through FOIA requests. The project is an advocacy group that looks to stop wasteful spending of U.S. tax dollars on abusive animal experiments. Justin Goodman is the Senior Vice President of Advocacy and Public Policy for the WCWP and responded to some questions about the investigation. 

“In early 2020, White Coat Waste Project was the first to expose how the National Institutes of Health funded dangerous animal experiments at the Wuhan lab that experts and most Americans believe caused COVID,” Goodman said. “Since then, we’ve continued to follow the money and investigate the NIH’s funding of risky animal experiments in the U.S. and abroad and are leading efforts on Capitol Hill to defund them. Using federal databases, the Freedom of Information Act, and published research papers, we connected the dots to show how, at least a year before the pandemic, a shady Maryland zoo whose curator is a former NIH animal experimenter shipped bats to an NIH bioagent laboratory in Montana to be infected with a SARS-like coronavirus shipped from the Wuhan lab.”

This Rocky Mountain Laboratory research also included Ralph Baric as a collaborator. Baric, a professor and researcher at the University of North Carolina, was also a collaborator on the Coronavirus research at the Wuhan Institute of Virology that is believed to have been the source of the start of the years-long COVID-19 pandemic. The Journal of Clinical Investigation reveals that Rocky Mountain Laboratory is where Willy Burgdorfer isolated the vector that causes Lyme disease in 1982. 

“The NIH’s Rocky Mountain Laboratory, where Fauci’s coronavirus experiments on zoo bats were conducted, does have a documented history of bioweapons development,” Goodman explained. “In recent years, it has also let infected animals escape and had security breaches including unauthorized personnel accessing the animal lab, which stockpiles and experiments with deadly and highly-contagious viruses for which there is no cure, like Ebola and even the plague.”

This investigation also draws more attention to the roadside zoo, Catoctin Wildlife Preserve, which was fined $12,000 in 2012 for “dangerous animal housing” and “inadequate animal care,” according to a Daily Mail report. The investigation exposed the fact that the government is wasting taxpayer money on dangerous research that relies on the abuse of animals. Those are all concerns of the WCWP. 

“Many people don’t realize that the United States government is the country’s single largest funder of wasteful and cruel experiments on dogs, cats, primates and other animals,” Goodman stated. “The NIH alone wastes over $20 billion a year on animal experiments, including hundreds of millions in foreign countries with absolutely no oversight or accountability. Despite what happened in Wuhan, the NIH is even still funding dangerous virus experiments on animals in China. And despite likely causing COVID with its dangerous virus experiments, the NIH has currently expanded its animal labs in Montana with $125 million of COVID relief funds. We’ve made progress to crack down on this waste and abuse and restrict taxpayer funding for experiments that supercharge deadly viruses and animal labs overseas, but there’s more work to be done.”

The WCWP was also behind the investigation that uncovered abusive experiments Fauci’s NIH conducted on beagle dogs. This particular study involved cutting the dogs’ vocal cords so researchers would not have to endure the painful cries of the beagles as they infested the dogs with up to 250 ticks per puppy. 

The White Coat Waste Project urges citizens concerned about animal abuse and wasteful government spending to visit their website

U.S. Representative Matt Gaetz of Florida also chimed in regarding the lab experiment investigations. “Between 2015 and 2023, at least 7 US entities supported NIH grant money totaling 3.3 million dollars,” Gaetz said. “That went to labs in China performing animal experiments. This does not come without substantial concerns and criticisms. This is why the individual single subject spending bills are so important because it gives us the opportunity to go program by program, line item by line item.”

 Published Tuesday, November 7, 2023

Steven Middendorp

Steven Middendorp is an investigative journalist, musician, and teacher. He has been a freelance writer and journalist for over 20 years. More recently, he has focused on issues dealing with corruption and negligence in the judicial system. He is a homesteading hobby farmer who encourages people to grow their own food, eat locally, and care for the land that provides sustenance to the community.

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