Culture Wars/Current Controversies

Meet the Censored: The U.S. Right to Know

By Matt Taibbi

A nonprofit that investigates Genetically Modified Organisms and the origins of Covid-19 is the latest to see its traffic plunge after a search engine update.

In July of 2020, a nonprofit watchdog group called the U.S. Right to Know — which describes its mission as exposing “corporate wrongdoing and government failures that threaten the integrity of our food system, our environment, and our health” — began filing requests for public documents “in an effort to discover what is known about the origins of the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2,” which “causes the disease Covid-19.”

Later in the year, USRTK began publishing the results of those document requests. These included reports of unsafe conditions at biolabs in Fort Collins, Colorado, as well as emails connected with the EcoHealth Alliance, an American non-profit that has been supported in part by taxpayer-funded grants, and has collaborated with the Wuhan Institute of Virology.

Those emails were not flattering to the EcoHealth Alliance. They showed that its leadership had a role in helping organize a letter in the prominent medical journal, The Lancet, denouncing as “conspiracy theory” the idea that Covid-19 might have had laboratory origins, but appeared reluctant to have its own involvement made public. In one email, EcoAlliance president Peter Daszak appeared to suggest distancing itself from the Lancet statement.


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