CNN and others have been reporting that at least 2 government intelligence agencies endorse the view that covid-19 was a lab leak.

While scientists still predominantly believe the virus occurred naturally in animals and spread to humans in an outbreak at a market in Wuhan, China, the US Department of Energy’s Office of Intelligence and Counterintelligence is now the second tentacle of the US government intelligence apparatus, along with the FBI, that endorses the “lab leak theory” – the minority view that the virus occurred as a result of work in a Chinese lab.

The DOE office is one of 18 government agencies that make up the intelligence community, which are under the umbrella of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence.

Most of the intelligence community remains either split or leaning toward the natural occurrence theory that scientific investigations have concluded as most likely. But without conclusive evidence, no one has been able to reject the lab leak theory entirely.

...and polling in 2021 suggested a majority of Americans believe the Chinese government had something to do with the origins of the virus. Asked whether they believe the virus originated from a laboratory leak in China or from human contact with an infected animal, about half (52%) said that they believed a lab leak was responsible.
[emphasis added]

Lack of answers about the origins of Covid-19 and an accumulation of circumstantial evidence have led some scientists, the Biden administration and the World Health Organization to argue that the lab leak theory needs more study. If only China was cooperating.

US lawmakers who have pushed the lab leak theory seized on reporting about the new Department of Energy assessment, although the details of what led to the assessment are not yet public.
The change in opinion by the Energy Department’s intelligence office is far from a total backing of the “lab leak” theory.

For starters, the conclusion was reached only with “low confidence,” as opposed to medium or high confidence.
All quoted information comes from CNN reporting.

Your thoughts? Do you think there's a chance that China used covid-19 as a weapon?
Your thoughts? Do you think there's a chance that China used covid-19 as a weapon?
Since there is no "conclusive evidence", as part of the article mentions, I also can not draw any conclusions about the origins of covid. I remember former president Trump claimed that China deliberately released or spread the virus to damage the US. For now, I doubt that's the case since this virus damaged more than just the US. There was too much collateral damage for the US to have been the intended target. Either the US wasn't the target or something more than that is going on, imo.

Still, I do question the degree of confidence that scientists have put on the view that the virus was naturally occurring based on human and animal contact. Have they been able to access the Wuhan area as much as they need to? Almost everyone has been reporting that China has not been cooperating with investigations.

Maybe these conclusions are the best we have (from CNN):
While the intelligence community remains very much split on what led to the virus, they were completely aligned on three key points when they first issued a two-page unclassified report in 2021:

  • The virus was not developed as a biological weapon.
  • Most of the agencies believe the virus was not genetically engineered. (Two agencies did not think there was sufficient evidence to make an assessment either way.)
  • Chinese officials did not have “foreknowledge of the virus” before the initial outbreak.
Something everyone seems to agree on is that China has not been cooperative in figuring out how the virus evolved.
Here's a rare sight of bipartisanship in Washington - a bipartisan/unanimous vote:

House votes 419-0 to declassify intelligence on COVID-19 origins, sending bill to Biden's desk​

Washington — The House voted unanimously Friday on a bill ordering the declassification of intelligence about the origins of COVID-19 in China, sending the bill to President Biden's desk.

The bill, which already passed the Senate, would require Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines to declassify any information about links between the origins of the COVID-19 pandemic and the Wuhan Institute of Virology, the controversial viral research laboratory in the city where the SARS-CoV-2 virus first emerged. The vote in the House was 419 to 0.
Source: CNBC

Imagine how much could get done in the country if we had such bipartisanship on all major issues, like immigration, crime, tax rates, etc.