Dr. Lee Riley – a recipient of nearly 40 taxpayer-funded grants from Anthony Fauci – has repeatedly appeared on Chinese state-run media outlets to praise Chinese COVID-19 vaccinations and defend state-enforced lockdowns.
Riley, who has received millions from Fauci’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) as part of his 100 total grants the National Institutes of Health (NIH), has participated in several China Global Television Network (CGTN) programs.
Riley received most of the grants during his tenure as a Professor and Chair of the Division of Infectious Disease and Vaccinology at the University of California Berkeley’s Li Ka Shing Center.
His resume also reveals grants from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and United States Agency for International Development. Riley has delivered several lectures in China, including at Chinese Communist-run institutions such as the Zhejiang Provincial CDC. He also boasts of having “research collaborations” in China.
CGTN: State-Run, CCP Propaganda.
Forced to register as a “foreign agent” in the U.S. by the Trump administration, CGTN relies on participation from American experts such as Riley to grant credibility to the operation. CGTN has been identified as a “long-standing weapon in Beijing’s arsenal of repression” whose raison d’être is “to attack designated enemies of the Communist Party,” even airing forced confessions to do so.
The network is the worldwide arm of China Central Television (CCTV), which is directly under the control of the Propaganda Department of the Chinese Communist Party.
In a July 2021 segment on the “state of the pandemic in China,” Riley appears to endorse Chinese COVID-19 vaccines when asked about the possibility of the World Health Organization (WHO) and Europe approving them for use:
“Any new vaccine would be helpful for the vaccination campaign. This new vaccine by Can Sino is an adenovirus vector vaccine, which is similar to the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, so it should have a similar level of efficacy. So if we can get that out as quickly as possible, that would definitely help the efforts to bring down the transmissions.”
On a separate CGTN show, Riley reiterated his support for Chinese vaccines when asked about WHO’s decision to authorize them for global use. He posits that the WHO’s decision is a “game-changer” and “important milestone,” adding that “Any new vaccine that can be really added to the current armamentarium that we have will really help the situation, especially in developing countries where vaccines are scarce resources.”
“This vaccine is easier to transport and deliver than some of the other vaccines,” he adds in praise of the Chinese COVID-19 jab.
‘We Can All Learn from China’.
He was also a panelist on a May 2021 episode of CGTN’s “The Heat,” suggesting that India relaxed their lockdown restrictions too early:
India served as kind of an example as a country where lockdowns were really shown to be effective, but unfortunately, they relaxed these restrictions, and we’re not witnessing the impact of those decisions that were made.
Riley also appeared on the network in June 2021 to discuss the emergence of the Delta variant and when asked about China’s efforts to “ramp up” production and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines to other countries, he asserts that “this is very important.”
Riley’s Twitter account contains similar praise for China, posting “we can all learn from China” while uncritically sharing the World Health Organization’s (WHO) controversial COVID-19 origins report.