Has the US Funded Bioweapons Research in Ukraine?

According to Russian officials, the U.S. government has been financing and helping Ukraine develop a secret bioweapons program.1 The U.S. State Department has shrugged it off as “total nonsense,”2 and fact checkers have published countless “consensus statements” emphatically denying the Russian claim over the past few weeks.

As usual, it’s difficult to discern the truth, as both sides are churning out propaganda. In the video above, Fox News anchor Tucker Carlson reviews what we’ve come to know so far.

Under Secretary of State Admits US Funding of Ukraine Labs

While the Biden administration has vehemently denied the Russian accusation, March 8, 2022, Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs, Victoria Nuland, admitted that “biological research laboratories” in Ukraine have in fact been funded and operated under the direction of the U.S.3

She did not admit that they were biological WEAPONS labs. But is it all semantics? While the research and defense industries would like you to believe that there’s a vast difference, and a sharp dividing line, between biological research for health purposes and biological weapons research, most such research can serve dual purposes.

During Nuland’s testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., asked: “Does Ukraine have chemical or biological weapons?” Surprisingly, Nuland, after some hesitation, responded that “there are biological research facilities” in the Ukraine.

Nuland then immediately went on to say that she’s “deeply concerned” the pathogens held in those labs may now fall into the hands of the Russian military. This implies the pathogens are extremely dangerous — and could be deployed as weapons by the Russians.

As noted by investigative journalist Glenn Greenwald (whose report is also covered by Russel Brand, below):4

“Any hope to depict such ‘facilities’ as benign or banal was immediately destroyed by [her] warning …

Nuland’s bizarre admission that ‘Ukraine has biological research facilities’ that are dangerous enough to warrant concern that they could fall into Russian hands ironically constituted more decisive evidence of the existence of such programs in Ukraine than what was offered in 2002 and 2003 to corroborate U.S. allegations about Saddam’s chemical and biological programs in Iraq …

It should go without saying that the existence of a Ukrainian biological ‘research’ program does not justify an invasion by Russia … But Nuland’s confession does shed critical light on several important issues …

Any attempt to claim that Ukraine’s biological facilities are just benign and standard medical labs is negated by Nuland’s explicitly grave concern that ‘Russian forces may be seeking to gain control of’ those facilities …

Russia has its own advanced medical labs … The only reason to be ‘quite concerned’ about these ‘biological research facilities’ falling into Russian hands is if they contain sophisticated materials that Russian scientists have not yet developed on their own and which could be used for nefarious purposes — i.e., either advanced biological weapons or dual-use ‘research’ that has the potential to be weaponized …

This joint US/Ukraine biological research is, of course, described by the State Department in the most unthreatening way possible. But that again prompts the question of why the U.S. would be so gravely concerned about benign and common research falling into Russian hands.

It also seems very odd, to put it mildly, that Nuland chose to acknowledge and describe the ‘facilities’ in response to a clear, simple question from Sen. Rubio about whether Ukraine possesses chemical and biological weapons.

If these labs are merely designed to find a cure for cancer or create safety measures against pathogens, why, in Nuland’s mind, would it have anything to do with a biological and chemical weapons program in Ukraine? …

The indisputable reality is that — despite long-standing international conventions banning development of biological weapons — all large, powerful countries conduct research that, at the very least, has the capacity to be converted into biological weapons. The work conducted under the guise of ‘defensive research’ can, and sometimes is, easily converted into the banned weapons themselves.”

More Semantics

When Fox News contacted the state department for comment about Nuland’s admissions, they received the following reply:5

“The U.S. Department of Defense does not own or operate biological weapons labs in Ukraine. Under Secretary Nuland was referring to Ukrainian diagnostic and biodefense laboratories during her testimony which are not biological weapons facilities. These institutions counter biological threats throughout the country.”

Again, this seems like someone trying to split hairs and not quite succeeding. The U.S. may not “own,” or “operate” biological weapons labs in Ukraine, but does it fund them? Funding, operating and owning are not the same thing, yet they’re denying the accusation of “funding” these labs by saying they don’t “own or operate” them.

Why the obfuscation? Why not say “we don’t FUND bioweapons labs,” if that is in fact the case? And what is the difference between “biodefense” labs and a “bioweapons” lab? If you were creating a bioweapon, wouldn’t you call it biodefense? As noted in an April 2020 article by independent journalist and analyst for the Institute for Public Accuracy, Sam Husseini:6

“Governments that participate in … biological weapon research generally distinguish between ‘biowarfare’ and ‘biodefense,’ as if to paint such ‘defense’ programs as necessary.

But this is rhetorical sleight-of-hand; the two concepts are largely indistinguishable. ‘Biodefense’ implies tacit biowarfare, breeding more dangerous pathogens for the alleged purpose of finding a way to fight them.”

Bioweapons expert Francis Boyle, who drafted the Biological Weapons Anti-Terrorism Act of 1989, has also pointed out that many if not most BSL-4 labs are dual use: “They first develop the offensive biological warfare agent and then they develop the supposed vaccine.”7

Were Pathogens Secured or Not?

Nuland’s statement also raises another question. If the U.S. government feared the pathogens could be used as weapons, why didn’t they secure them before the Russians went into Ukraine? Carlson asks. Clearly, they knew it was going to happen. In fact, President Biden stated February 18 that he was “convinced” Putin would invade Ukraine.8

March 11, 2022, Reuters9 reported that the World Health Organization had advised Ukraine to destroy high-threat pathogens to prevent “potential spills” were any of the facilities to be bombed.

Curiously, the WHO declined to say when it made that recommendation. It also did not specify the pathogens Ukraine labs might have. We also don’t know whether the Ukrainians complied with the request.

What Are the Labs Actually Used For?

As reported by Carlson, initially, the Biden administration told members of Congress that the labs in Ukraine were “designed to help the Ukrainians fight tuberculosis” and “various livestock diseases.”

Read further at SGT Report

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