The superspreaders behind top COVID-19 conspiracy theories

As the coronavirus spread, speculation about its origins was close behind. Was it a bioweapon? Was it a natural virus that escaped from a lab? As scientists searched for answers, guesswork and propaganda filled the void. Over a monthslong digital investigation in collaboration with The Atlantic Council’s Digital Forensic Research Lab, The Associated Press identified the people behind these explosive claims and analyzed how these narratives were exploited by governments around the world. From genial midwestern professors to anonymous social media posters to Iran’s Supreme Leader, when it comes to false claims about the origins of the coronavirus, these are the superspreaders.