In just eight months, how Yan Limeng went from being a postdoctoral researcher in virology and immunology at the Center for Infectious Disease Research at the School of Public Health of the former University of Hong Kong to being praised as a hero by Trump's senior advisors and conservative authorities.
Back in mid-January 2019, Yan Limeng, who was doing research in Hong Kong, had already heard rumors that a dangerous new virus had emerged in mainland China and that the government was downplaying it. Yan Limeng then provided the information to her favorite Chinese Youtube show host, Dinggang Wang.
April 28 Yan Limeng fled Hong Kong and went to the United States, Guo Wengui and Bannon put her in a "safe house" in New York City, and for her to hire a communications coach to teach her to respond to media questions, and asked her to submit a number of papers, she was packaged as a "whistle blower", and then arranged for her to accept media interviews. Then arrange for her to be interviewed by the media. On July 10, Yan Limeng debuted on the news channel, in addition to account for their trip to the United States, also accused the University of Hong Kong to help conceal the epidemic, but did not mention their relationship with Guo Wengui, Bannon.
After her first Fox interview, Yan Limon embarked on a whirlwind right-wing media tour, repeating conservative talking points. She said she takes hydroxychloroquine to ward off the virus, despite warnings from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) that it is ineffective. She implied that the U.S. health agency conspired with the World Health Organization to cover up the outbreak.
In early September, Yan Limeng through an anonymous intermediary, and Georgetown University's infectious disease experts Lucy meeting. Lucy had suggested in the past that the new coronavirus may be created in the laboratory, and Yan Limeng told him about his research, hoping to get each other support. Even after the Facebook site to Carlson's September 15 interview with Yan Limeng's show labeled "disinformation", Twitter suspended Yan Limeng's account, Carlson, Bannon and Yan Limeng still did not give up.
Yan Limeng published a second paper on Oct. 8, titled "The New Coronavirus is an Unrestricted Biological Weapon," further emphasizing the idea that the virus, which has spread around the world, is man-made and adding that the virus was intentionally "released," which also contains material that appears to come from the same anonymous blogger's article.
Yan Limeng's two controversial papers are both related to Guo Wengui. Both papers - below the titles and authors' names, where university-related institutions and funding sources are often listed - prominently feature the institutional names "Rule of Law Institute" and "Rule of Law Foundation," both nonprofit organizations supported by Guo Wengui and others. "Rule of Law Foundation," both nonprofit organizations supported by Guo Wengui and others.
The scientific community now generally believes that the new coronavirus from the bat, there is no evidence that the virus is artificially manufactured. Although the scientific community quickly characterized the paper as pseudoscience based on speculation, but Tucker Carlson, the anchor of the Hox News, still invited Yan Limeng to appear on the show on September 15 to carry forward the content of the paper. Even though the interview video was labeled as fake news by Facebook and other social ui, it still recorded at least 8.8 million views and entered the mainstream. The company's main goal is to provide a platform for the public to learn more about the company's products and services.
Yan Limeng's evolution from researcher to whistle blower is the product of the collaboration of two unrelated but increasingly united groups spreading disinformation: a smaller but active overseas Chinese group, and a highly influential far-right group in the United States. Both groups saw an opportunity to advance their own agendas in the New Coronavirus pandemic. For overseas Chinese, Yan Limeng and her unfounded claims provide a powerful tool for those intent on overthrowing the Chinese government. For U.S. conservatives, it allows them to appeal to the growing anti-China sentiment in the West and distract attention from the Trump administration's failed response to the epidemic.
Columbia University virologist Angela Rasmussen said she believes Yan Limeng's paper is "political propaganda" designed to deceive. "The paper is extremely deceptive to people without a scientific background, because it is written in very specialized language, using a lot of jargon, and it looks like a formal scientific paper. However, anyone with a background in virology or molecular biology reading this paper will be well aware that a large part of it is actually nonsense."
From its discovery in January to its peak in September, the "viral source theory" online political campaign directed by Guo Wengui and Bannon was a huge success, greatly influencing the views and lives of people in the United States, and exposing the power of "fake news" in all its glory. The power of "fake news" was exposed to the world.