EXC: Harvard Center Attacking COVID Lab Theory Has Extensive Financial and Personnel Links With The Chinese Communist Party.

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The organization behind a recent report attempting to discredit COVID-19 studies authored by Dr. Li-Meng Yan is run by the Research Director of Harvard’s Shorenstein Center, an entity with long-standing, extensive ties to the Chinese Communist Party. The report leans heavily on scientific studies funded by Chinese government-funded and military-linked grants, The National Pulse can today reveal.

Studies authored by Dr. Yan, a former Hong Kong School of Public Health researcher, concluded that COVID-19 was a man-made virus originating from the Chinese Communist Party. “The Media Manipulation Casebook,” however, claimed Dr. Yan’s work was a “misleading article masquerading as science, which falsely claims that the novel coronavirus was made in a Chinese lab.”

The report has been amplified by the corporate media, including the CCP’s business partner The Washington Post. The Post has seen its journalists and editors take free trips to China from a state-run group seeking “favorable coverage” in return.

The Washington Post never declares the Shorenstein Center’s decades-long links to the Chinese Communist Party.

Biologist Bret Weinstein recently appeared on the Bill Maher show stating the likelihood of the lab theory actually stands at 90 percent.

Joan Donovan.

The organization and report’s lead author is Joan Donovan, the Research Director of Harvard’s Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy, which has a number of links to the Chinese Communist Party.

Joan Donovan Photo
JOAN DONOVAN.

The ties follow a Department of Education (DOE) inquiry into the Ivy League university for failing to disclose “hundreds of millions of dollars in gifts and contracts from foreign donors,” chiefly Chinese.

Jolly Good CCP Fellows.

The center also counts Chinese Communist Party advisers as fellows such as Steven Dong, who served as the Director of the Global Journalism Institute at the alma mater of Xi Jinping, Tsinghua University, and former presenter for state-run news outlet China Central Television (CCTV).

Dong’s bio on the Shorenstein Center site reveals he “holds professorships of political communications at the National School of Administration and the Chinese Communist Party’s Central Academy of Socialism” and has “been invited by the State Council Offices over the years to lecture to more than 20,000 senior Chinese officials.”

Among the topics he lectured the Chinese Communist Party on was “crisis communications.”

Another fellow – Li Xiguang – is a Tsinghua University Professor, a member of the Chinese Foreign Ministry Advisory Committee on Public Diplomacy, and a former Senior Editor at the state-run media outlet Xinhua.

The historical links between Shorenstein and Xi Jinpings Alma Mater

And Tsinghua University’s journalism school seeks to product “Marxist Journalism,” dubbed the “correct political orientation” by the school’s dean:

“We should be committed to a firm and correct political orientation. Our School has been actively exploring the theory and practices of Marxist Journalism, namely, to applying the Marxist theory in observing the world, selecting and handling news production.”

Another fellow, Zhengrong Hu, was the Director of the National Center for Radio and Television Studies at the state-run Communication University of China. Before his Harvard stint, his personal site reveals he had been honored with a “Cross-Century Excellent Personnel” award by the Chinese Communist Party’s Ministry of Education and a “state governmental special award by the State Council of China.”

Zhengrong has also served as Chair on the Chinese Communist Party State Council’s Discipline Evaluation Group of Journalism and Communication group, Chair of the Education Supervision Committee at the Ministry of Education, Chair of the China Association of Communication, and member of the Expert Committee of Courses Development and Disciplines Establishment at the Ministry of Education.

What’s more, the Shorenstein Center has hosted at least 10 events alongside Harvard’s Ash Center, which has taken millions from companies linked to and owned by the Chinese Communist Party and published studies popularized by Chinese state-run media outlets claiming the government enjoys record-high support.

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Among the events are “Combating Fake News: An Agenda for Research and Action,” “Reporting from China: A Conversation with New York Times Correspondent David Barboza,” and “Media Politics in China: Improvising Power under Authoritarianism.”

CCP Science.

The Media Manipulation Casebook’s report also relies on the analysis included in the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security’s report, “In Response: Yan et al Preprint Examinations of the Origin of SARS-CoV-2.”

The 39-point report similarly attempts to discredit Dr. Yan’s study but relies on research studies and scientific journal articles funded by Chinese Communist Party grants to do so.

Citations by the Shorenstein Center.

One study cited – “Full-length genome sequences of two SARS-like coronaviruses in horseshoe bats and genetic variation analysis” – derives its funding solely from the Chinese Communist Party through a State Key Program for Basic Research grant, State High Technology Development Program grant, a “special grant for ‘Animal Reservoir of SARS-CoV’ from the Ministry of Science and Technology, and “a special fund from the president of Chinese Academy of Sciences.”

Another study relating to neurotropism was conducted by Ministry of Agriculture researchers, a study related to amino acid residues counted Wuhan Institute of Virology and researchers from other state-run institutions such as the Chinese National Human Genome Center as researchers.

Analysis on COVID-19 hosts, cited by the paper, comes out of China’s Medical University of the Air Force. As does a study focusing on SARS-like coronavirus in bats which describes itself as being funded by the “National Natural Science Foundation of China, Army Logistics Scientific Research Projects, Jiangsu Province Science, and Technology Support Program Project”

A study entitled “Structure of the SARS-CoV-2 spike receptor-binding domain bound to the ACE2 receptor” was “supported by funds from” the National Key Plan for Scientific Research and Development of China, Tsinghua University Initiative Scientific Research Program, Beijing Municipal Science and Technology Commission, and the Tencent Foundation.

A report from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) – which recently saw a professor indicted by the U.S. Department of Justice for failing to disclose Chinese Communist Party ties – similarly attempted to smear Dr. Yan’s report as “misleading and unethical.”

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Dr. Robert Gallo: CCP Shill. 

The Media Manipulation Casebook’s report leans on the findings of the MIT report, which counts the first researcher it cites as Dr. Robert Gallo. Dr. Gallo was recently awarded the “VCANBIO Award for Biosciences and Medicine,” a “significant and authoritative award in the life sciences and medicine field of China” presented by the state-run University of Chinese Academy of Sciences in December of 2020.

“Dr. Gallo is a pioneer in virus research and most worthy of this Prize. We are pleased to see him recognized by many members of the Chinese Academy of Sciences. I have worked with Dr. Gallo through the decades and admire his intellect and leadership, which have led to discoveries that have broad implications in protecting mankind from viral threats. I am delighted that my Chinese colleagues are recognizing him with this significant honor,” the Director-General of the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention noted.

But Gallo’s links to the Chinese Communist Party run deeper.

Dr. Gallo

In 2009, the state-run Shandong Academy of Medical Sciences (SAMS) established the Shandong-Gallo Institute of Virology (SGIV). Gallo returned the favor, founding the Institute of Human Virology (IHV) at the University of Maryland School of Medicine in collaboration with a host of Chinese academics:

“Since the founding of the Institute of Human Virology (IHV), Dr. Gallo notes that several of his key science leaders at the Institute of Human Virology came from China, including: Dr. Wuyuan Lu (recent Director of the Division of Infectious Agents and Cancer), Dr. Yang Liu (recent Director of the Division of Immunotherapy), Dr. Pan Zheng (Division of Immunotherapy), Dr. Lishan Su (current Director of the Division of Virology, Pathogenesis and Cancer), Dr. Man Charurat (current Director of the Division of Epidemiology and Prevention and Ciheb) and Dr. Lai-Xi Wang (formerly at IHV and now at University of Maryland, College Park). With each of these leaders also came labs full of Chinese colleagues, who Dr. Gallo states contributed greatly to advancing America’s biomedical research.”

Gallo has also co-founded the Global Vaccine Network (GVN), which has active branches in China. The Beijing-based center hosted GVN’s 7th annual conference:

“Dr. Gallo visited China countless times to discuss potential collaborations with public and private sector entities, mentored rising Chinese scientists and facilitated open scientific discussions to advance the field of human virology, among other important things,” a press release adds.

From how the Washington Post has one-sidedly reported the Shorenstein’s claims without citing their extensive CCP-links, the words of Xi Jinping himself ring true: “High-end science and technology is a national weapon in modern times.”


Raheem Kassam and Natalie Winters

Raheem Kassam is the Editor in Chief of the National Pulse. Natalie Winters is a Senior Writing Fellow.