Johnson recently obtained an email from Dr. David Morens, a former top deputy and senior advisor to Dr. Anthony Fauci at the National Institutes of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID). In the email, Morens admitted that he purposefully did not keep government records that would be sought out by congressional investigators and the public.
On June 17, 2021, during the height of investigation into the origins of COVD-19, Morens wrote in an official document to his colleagues: "I have retained very few emails or documents on these matters, and continue to request that correspondence on sensitive issues be sent to me at my Gmail address.”
At the time, Sen. Johnson and other Congressional investigators were asking then NIH Director Dr. Francis Collins for any documents related to the government’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic. The congressional investigators sought more information about gain-of-function bioweapons research at the Wuhan Institute of Virology, which indirectly received grants from the NIH through a payment scheme funneled through Dr. Peter Daszak at EcoHealth Alliance.
Not only is Morens aware that there is pertinent information at the NIH that could be subject to investigation, but he also made his intentions clear that this information and correspondence should be deleted or kept private from the public’s eye. Sen. Johnson has turned Dr. Moren’s statement over to Health Secretary Xavior Becerra.
"Based on this email, it appears that Morens may have intentionally deleted or destroyed records relating to the origins of COVID-19 given his admission that he has 'retained very few emails or documents on these matters," Mr. Johnson told Mr. Becerra. "Further, Dr. Morens' stated preference to receive correspondence on 'sensitive issues' through Gmail shows an apparent evasion of federal record keeping requirements and a complete disregard for transparency."
For three years, Sen. Johnson’s congressional investigation into the NIH’s dealings in Wuhan have been stonewalled by the Department of Health and Human Services. HHS has worked hand-in-hand with the NIH to stall, redact, or conceal documents related to the origins of COVID-19. Sen. Johnson notes that HHS repeatedly refuses to hand over records that have been requested by Congress. Johnson believes that Morens’ actions “may have directly obstructed my oversight efforts."
Dr. Moren’s email was titled "CONFIDENTIAL WITHOUT OUR SMALL GROUP, PLEASE.” It was addressed to a group of high-level scientists at the American Society of Tropical Medicine & Hygiene (AJTMH). Among those addressed is Dr. Peter Daszak, whose EcoHealth Alliance is implicated in the origins of COVID-19. In Moren’s missive, he said he saved correspondence relating to papers he wrote that were published online. However, he admitted that he “retained no documents that might lead other members of AJTMH to be approached for similar document production."
In a previous missive obtained by a Congressional investigation, Dr. Moren wrote to a group of scientists that: "I try to always communicate on Gmail because my NIH email is FOIA'd constantly."
Dr. Morens disclosed in the July 9, 2021 email that his Gmail had been hacked and "until IT can get it fixed I may have to occasionally email from my NIH account."
"Don't worry, just send to any of my addresses and I will delete anything I don't want to see in the New York Times," he also wrote.
With these emails, it is clear that the NIAID sought to hide pertinent correspondence and details about COVID-19 from the public, in an attempt to shirk accountability and escape culpability for, not only their failures in how they responded to SARS-CoV-2, but also for their role in funding, developing, and planning COVID-19. At the very least, government employees who attempt to conceal or destroy government records must face criminal prosecution.
Sources for this article include: