Background Briefing: February 27, 2023


New Intelligence Has the DOE and the FBI Suggesting the Coronavirus Pandemic Could Have Originated from a Lab Accident in China

We begin with new intelligence on the origins of the coronavirus pandemic that has the Department of Energy stating that they have “low confidence” that the pandemic was caused by a lab leak joining with the FBI who have concluded with “moderate confidence” that the virus emerged from an accident at China’s Wuhan Institute of Virology. Joining us is Dr. Stanley Perlman, a professor of Microbiology and Immunology at the University of Iowa who has studied coronavirus pathogenesis for four decades. We discuss how difficult it has been to establish the truth about the origins of Covid 19 because the Chinese government from the beginning have stonewalled and by cleaning and disinfecting the Wuhan Seafood Market where it is suspected the virus made a zoonotic leap from animals to humans, evidence for the most likely theory was lost.


As Settlers Rampage on The West Bank, a Jordanian/Israeli Agreement is Overruled by Israel’s Far-Right Finance Minister

Then we look into the violent rampage by settlers destroying and burning Palestinian homes and cars on the West Bank to avenge the deaths of two settlers shot by a Palestinian gunman on Sunday and the agreement between Jordanian and Israeli officials to halt settlements over the weekend that was immediately shot down by the new far-right Finance Minister in charge of Israel’s West Bank policy. Joining us is Khaled Elgindy, Senior Fellow and the Middle East Institute where he directs the Program on Palestine and Palestinian-Israeli Affairs. He previously served as an advisor to the Palestinian leadership on permanent status negotiations with Israel from 2004-2009 and was a key participant in the Annapolis negotiations launched in November of 2007. His latest book is Blindspot: America and the Palestinians from Balfour to Trump.

Could an Agreement Between the UK’s PM Sunak and the head of the EU be the Beginning of the End of Brexit?

Then finally we assess the so-called “Windsor Framework” worked out between UK PM Sunak and the EU’s Ursula Von der Leyan on Northern Ireland trade which could be the beginning of a reset of relations between the UK and the EU following the Brexit debacle that continues to paralyze Britain’s economy and its politics. Joining us from the UK is Patrick Allen the Founder and Chair of the Progressive Economic Forum, a progressive think tank that supports the almost 50% of UK citizens who voted against Brexit in the first place.