Although the military is only permitted to require service members to receive vaccines that have been fully approved by the Food and Drug Administration, a recent whistleblower complaint suggests that the Pentagon sought to pass off an emergency-use COVID-19 vaccine as an FDA-approved alternative.
A total of nine officers signed the report, which claimed that multiple Coast Guard clinics received doses that, according to their labels, contained the fully approved Comirnaty vaccine developed by Pfizer. Upon closer inspection, however, the whistleblowers determined that the shots showed no evidence that they came from the Belgium manufacturer required to produce the vaccine.
Instead, the complaint surmised that the doses were actually the prevalent Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine that has only been authorized by the FDA for emergency use.
Furthermore, one of the whistleblowers indicated that his religious exemption request was denied and he was ordered to receive what was portrayed as the fully approved vaccine or face possible expulsion from the military.
The letter was sent to Capitol Hill, where Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) took an active interest in the complaint and wrote a letter of his own, which he addressed to the FDA, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Department of Defense.
DoD, FDA, and CDC must address whistleblower allegations that COVID-19 vaccines for service members are mislabeled and manufactured at an unauthorized location.
— Senator Ron Johnson (@SenRonJohnson) August 19, 2022
Specifically, the senator asked for details regarding where the vaccines in question were manufactured as well as all of the Comirnaty lot numbers sent to military bases in compliance with the CDC’s requirements.
“Any retaliatory actions taken against these individuals will not be tolerated and will be investigated immediately,” Johnson wrote. “DoD, FDA, and CDC owe our service members complete transparency regarding the COVID-19 vaccines that the Biden administration has forced upon them.”
A number of federal court decisions have effectively limited the Biden administration from mandating COVID-19 vaccines for enlisted service members.
Most recently, U.S. District Judge Steven Merryday sided with thousands of Marines who sought a religious exemption to the branch’s requirement.
As part of his ruling on Friday that granted a preliminary injunction on behalf of the active-duty Marines and reservists, the judge wrote: “In not one case has the Marine Corps agreed to allow any accommodation, including any already-proven-successful health and safety protocol, to reasonably accommodate both the health and readiness of the Marine Corps and the sincere religious belief of a fellow Marine.”