Daniel Horowitz Op-ed: Hunter Biden’s role in Ukrainian biolabs raises serious questions about gain of function and Ukraine policy
Commentary by DANIEL HOROWITZ | March 30, 2022
Recent emails unearthed by the U.K. Daily Mail and the National Pulse reveal that during the last decade, Hunter Biden seemed to have a keen interest in pathogen research in Ukraine and using it as a tool for geopolitical affairs in that country. It just so happens to be that a pathogen connected to gain-of-function research destroyed the world, and then the next “big current thing” on the geopolitical stage was none other than Ukraine. Shouldn’t the American people get some answers as to why our government was so heavily involved – via the vice president’s son – in both pathogen research and Ukraine and to make sure Ukraine is not Wuhan 2.0?
Earlier this month, I detailed the known connections between biotech firm Metabiota Inc., responsible for the pathogen research in Ukraine, the DOD, and EcoHealth Alliance, along with the Wuhan lab most likely responsible for the leak of SARS-CoV-2. I also noted that Rosemont Seneca Technology Partners (RSTP), a subsidiary of the Hunter Biden and Christopher Heinz-founded Rosemont Capital, gave Metabiota, a company accused of dangerous lab protocols during the African Ebola pandemic, its first infusion of cash a decade ago. Now, new emails from Hunter’s laptop demonstrate that his involvement in Metabiota and pathogen research in Ukraine was much deeper than just an initial investment.
On April 4, 2014, Metabiota vice president Mary Guttieri wrote an email to the younger Biden outlining how they could “assert Ukraine’s cultural and economic independence from Russia’” with their joint venture, according to an email from Hunter’s laptop obtained by the U.K. Daily Mail. That is quite a curious goal for a company that supposedly does scientific research and analysis about emerging pandemics.
The outlet also posted another email dated April 8, 2014, from Burisma executive Vadym Pozharskyi referring to a “science project” Hunter had pitched to him involving Burisma and Metabiota in Ukraine. “Please find few initial points to be discussed for the purposes of analyzing the potential of this as you called, ‘Science Ukraine’ project,” Pozharskyi wrote. Hunter sits on the board of Burisma, a Ukrainian gas company owned by corrupt billionaire Mikolay Zlochevsky, who fled to Monaco after he was put under investigation.
Hunter’s dad, as vice president, was in charge of our foreign policy with Ukraine in 2014 when all of this was occurring and when the U.S. government was backing the color revolution that led to the ouster of the pro-Russian Viktor Yanukovych. It was at this time that the Defense Department began funding the Metabiota operations in Ukraine.
After receiving 18.4 million from the U.S. Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) between February 2014 and November 2016, with $307,091 earmarked for “Ukraine research projects,” “Metabiota has worked in Ukraine for Black & Veatch, a US defense contractor with deep ties to military intelligence agencies, which built secure labs in Ukraine that analyzed killer diseases and bioweapons,” according to the Daily Mail.
“It raises the question, what is the real purpose of this venture? It’s very odd,” said former senior CIA officer Sam Faddis in an interview with the Daily Mail. “His father was the Vice President of the United States and in charge of relations with Ukraine. So why was Hunter not only on the board of a suspect Ukrainian gas firm, but also hooked them up with a company working on bioweapons research?”
Biden was so involved in Metabiota that one email written that same month in 2014 reveals that he and his business partner Eric Schwerin discussed subletting their office space to the San-Francisco-based biotech firm.
So, what exactly were they working on? Last week, the National Pulse reported that a feature in the Science and Technology Center in Ukraine’s 2016 Annual Report recounts an October 2016 meeting involving U.S. military officials and their Ukrainian counterparts together with Black & Veatch and Metabiota staff to discuss the lab work. The discussion centered around “existing frameworks, regulatory coordination, and ongoing cooperative projects in research, surveillance and diagnostics of a number of dangerous zoonotic diseases, such as avian influenza, leptospirosis, Crimea Congo hemorrhagic fever, and brucellosis.”
The National Pulse cites a 2019 paper authored by researchers from Metabiota and three Ukraine-based institutes and funded by the U.S. Defense Threat Reduction Agency sharing how they isolated a form of African swine flu using a pig from Ukraine in 2016. They also detail their research on Anthrax in animals in Ukraine.
Well, where else have we heard of Metabiota partners working on gain-of-function research of pathogens that typically are in animals? Oh yes, EcoHealth Alliance in Wuhan. In the past, Metabiota has worked with EcoHealth and the Wuhan Institute of Virology. The zoonotic projects being described in Ukraine sound awfully similar to the gain-of-function work EcoHealth was involved with in Wuhan. In Feb. 2016, EcoHealth’s founder, Peter Daszak, explained the company’s zoonotic pathogen work as follows:
So as an example, first of all, we are only looking at viral families that include those that have gone into people from animals. So, we narrow it down straight away. Then when you get a sequence of a virus and it looks like a relative of a known nasty pathogen, just like we did with SARS, we found other Corona viruses in bats, a whole host of them, some of them looked very similar to SARS. So, we sequenced the spike protein, the protein that attaches to cells. Then we, well, I didn’t do this work, but my colleagues in China did the work, you create the pseudo-particles, you insert the spike proteins from those viruses [to see if they] bind to human cells. And each step you move closer and closer to this virus could really become pathogenic in people. So, you narrow down the field, you reduce the cost and you end up with a small number of viruses that really do look like killers. (C-Span, 1:16:22.)
Sure sounds a lot like the coronavirus that actually broke out several years ago and destroyed the world as we know it. Less than a month later, Ralph Baric, the UNC Chapel Hill biologist who spearheaded the gain-of-function projects for Daszak, co-authored a paper warning with certitude of the emergence of this disease. “The results indicate that viruses using WIV1-CoV spike are poised to emerge in human populations due to efficient replication in primary human airway epithelial cell cultures,” concluded the authors.
How did they know? And doesn’t anyone have a concern that the same players were up to no good in Ukraine, especially given Hunter Biden’s ethical problems and the fact that his dad, the vice president and now the president, was overseeing Ukrainian affairs during that time?
Recently, the National Pulse found, based on EcoHealth’s 990 filings and analysis by ProPublica, that the company’s investment income surged by 342% in the year of the pandemic. EcoHealth received millions of dollars from Fauci’s NIAD to work on “killer” viruses with the Wuhan Institute, creating “chimeric” viruses that spread in humans at rates “equivalent to epidemic strains of SARS-CoV.”
Now consider the fact that Metabiota’s CEO, Nathan Wolfe, penned an article in Time on Aug. 1, 2014, detailing his opinion on the Ebola outbreak in Africa and then literally predicted coronavirus as the next outbreak:
While Ebola virus won’t be the next global Andromeda strain, there are viruses out there that could be. Coronaviruses (like SARS) and influenza viruses (like the H1N1 virus of 1918) for example, show that some viruses truly can spread around the world in ways that will blindside and impact our entire planet. It is notable that a novel coronavirus, the Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome (MERS), and a novel influenzavirus, the H7N9 virus, receive very little attention from the international media. Perhaps as importantly, there are millions of still unidentified viruses in animal reservoirs, among which, almost certainly is a virus that we’d have no capacity to understand, or stop were it to suddenly emerge today.
If we didn’t have a pandemic likely created by similar research – possibly by the same players – killing millions globally and injuring tens of millions of others, I wouldn’t be too concerned with these research projects in Ukraine. But given what has occurred, why is there zero concern from the media or the politicians about what we have been doing in Ukraine and elsewhere? And how does it shape our entire geopolitical worldview on the Russian-Ukrainian conflict? Inquiring minds would like to know.