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There is no credible evidence to back the claim, which cites as its proof baseless and disjointed allegations made on an episode of a TV show about conspiracy theories.
A woman interviewed on the episode alleges without evidence that the U.S. government planned a pandemic that it would create with vaccines.
Scientists who have studied the coronavirus have generally concluded that it resembles naturally occurring viruses. It’s possible the virus somehow leaked from a lab, though there’s still nothing conclusive.
The headline on a spooky video made this allegation about COVID-19:
"They've planned this pandemic all along!"
The user who posted the video on Facebook commented: "Jesse Ventura warned us since 2009!"
The post was published July 8, but was circulating widely in December.
Like another Ventura video that made a different "planned" claim about COVID-19, which we rated Pants on Fire, this claim is false and ridiculous.
The eight-minute video shows Ventura, the former professional wrestler and former Minnesota governor, conducting an interview on a 2009 episode of the truTV show "Conspiracy Theory with Jesse Ventura."
The episode opens with a narrator intoning ominously:
"Jesse Ventura’s investigation into the secret society that runs the world has led to this: a meeting at a remote airstrip with Dr. Rima Laibow. The physician fled the United States in fear of the Bilderbergs’ plan to use vaccines to kill off much of the world’s population."
The annual Bilderberg Meetings, named for a hotel where the first meeting took place, are attended by political leaders, government officials and experts from industry, finance, media and academia in Europe and North America. The private gatherings are often the target of conspiracy theories.
Laibow, a New Jersey psychiatrist, says in the interview she left the U.S. because she didn’t feel safe. She then makes a series of baseless and disjointed allegations, including that the World Health Organization "has decided that we have 90% too many people" and that it has worked since 1974 on vaccines "to create permanent sterility"; that the U.S. government "will induce a pandemic" using a nasal mist vaccine that is a "live, attenuated virus" that will spread the flu from one person to another; and that the government will respond by saying it doesn’t have enough vaccines and so it will add squalene to existing supplies. "What that means is a holocaust, a genocidal holocaust," she stated.
There’s no credible evidence presented for any of this.
In November 2020, Laibow was a target of a civil complaint by the federal government seeking to stop her and a colleague from distributing an unapproved product touted as a prevention or treatment for COVID-19 and other diseases, in violation of federal law. The case is pending.
Scientists who have studied the coronavirus have generally concluded that it resembles naturally occurring viruses. They have considered the possibility that the virus somehow leaked from a lab, though there’s still no conclusive evidence of its exact source.
And there is no evidence that the pandemic emerged from vaccinations.
The claim that the coronavirus pandemic was planned is false and ridiculous — Pants on Fire.
Facebook, post, July 8, 2021
Wayback Machine, TruTV, 2009 episode listing of "Conspiracy Theory with Jesse Ventura," accessed Dec. 15, 2021
Myth Detector, "Did the WHO and Bilderberg Group Create a Vaccine for Infertility?", Sept. 10, 2021
PolitiFact, "No, COVID wasn’t planned by FEMA to kill thousands and open concentration camps," Sept. 16, 2021
PolitiFact, "Debating the origins of the COVID-19 virus: What we know, what we don’t know," May 17, 2021
Food and Drug Administration, news release, Nov. 13, 2020
Justice Department, complaint, Nov. 13, 2020
Pacer, Civil Docket for Case #: 2:20-cv-16016-JXN-ESK, accessed Dec. 16, 2021
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