All posts tagged: conspiracy theories

In Defense of ‘Conspiracy Theories’

Max Parry To remain innocent may also be to remain ignorant.” John Berger, Ways of Seeing This November 22nd marked fifty-five years since the assassination of John F. Kennedy. Perhaps no other major incident in U.S. history has generated more uncertainty and skepticism towards its official account than his Dallas killing in 1963. A 2013 Gallup poll showed that a clear majority of Americans still doubt the Warren Commission’s determination that Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone as the accused sniper, with many suspecting that others in government and organized crime were involved in a secret plot to kill the president. Although its etymological origins can be traced back further, as a cultural phenomenon the notion of belief in so-called ‘conspiracy theories’ is widely attributed to a surge in distrust of government and media institutions that followed JFK’s murder. Perhaps its only rival would be September 11th, which surveys have similarly indicated a trend of doubt towards the 9/11 Commission Report’s version of events leading up to the attacks in 2001. In other words, most people …

“People hold opinions I don’t share, we should stop them.”

Kit Knightly Sixty percent of us believe in “conspiracy theories”, and we shouldn’t. At least according to Hugo Drochon, Professor of Politics at Nottingham University. He doesn’t raise the question of whether or not some “conspiracy theories” may be true, his blanket assumption is that all of them are not. His article is not about WHAT people think, WHY they think it, or IF they’re wrong. The article is about rationalizing social control – specifically steps the state can take to assert control over the political opinions of the electorate. Indeed the entire premise of the article is right there in the headline: Britons are swallowing conspiracy theories. Here’s how to stop the rot British people think things they shouldn’t, and here’s how we can stop them. The flawed logic is aggressive. The patronising tone nauseating. It’s the terrifying smiling face of a Brave New World. The article deals only in absolutes. There are “conspiracy theories”, and they are all wrong. Even such vague concepts as the idea the government might publish misleading statistics or …

The 9/11 anniversary: Conspiracy theory or critical thinking?

There should be no stigma attached to questioning the official account of what happened 17 years ago. Graeme MacQueen On the 17th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks that let loose so much international violence, the public has a right to ask what really happened on that day. Here are eight points to ponder. Questioners of the official account of 9/11 are often dismissed as “conspiracy theorists,” but this makes no sense. A conspiracy is just a secret plan, by two or more people, to commit a criminal or immoral act. The 9/11 attacks obviously involved a conspiracy. Some people think that the truth of the official account blaming al-Qaida is obvious to every sane person. Not true. Polls suggest that less than half the world’s population shares this confidence. If Bin Laden was the criminal mastermind, why didn’t the FBI charge him with the crime? In 2006 an FBI spokesperson explained: the Bureau had no hard evidence connecting him to 9/11. Questioners of the official account of 9/11 are not all woolly-minded bloggers. Many have …

Conspiracies Are Not All Theoretical

Alison Broinowski Before the 2016 election, candidate Donald Trump told voters he would ‘find out who really knocked down the World Trade Center.’ His promise may turn out to be as empty as his predecessor’s undertaking to close down Guantánamo Bay. Or he may be prevented from keeping it by those who know the truth. Trump, an expert in false facts, questioned the version of events provided by the 9/11 Commission Report. More significantly, so did many scientists, engineers, and intelligence analysts. Experts from a wide range of countries at The Toronto Hearings on 9/11 in 2011 produced a DVD two years later, subtitled ‘Uncovering Ten Years of Deception’. The facts are presented in several books, including those by David Ray Griffin, Peter Dale Scott, Paul Thompson and Nafeez Ahmed: but many still can’t believe them. When Secretary of State Madeleine Albright was asked in 1996 if the deaths of half a million Arab children following Gulf War I was justified, she infamously replied, ‘I think this is a very hard choice, but the price–we …

Thanksgiving for JFK

by Edward Curtin If he had lived, President John F. Kennedy would have been 100 years old this year. At Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow, his family would be raising a glass in his honor. But as we all know, he was murdered in Dallas, Texas on this date – November 22nd – in 1963. A true war hero twice over, he risked his life to save his men in World War II, and then, after a radical turn toward peace-making in the last year of his life, he died in his own country at the hands of his domestic enemies as a soldier in a non-violent struggle for peace and reconciliation for all people across the world. But we can still celebrate, mourn, and offer thanksgiving for his courageous witness. When we gather tomorrow to give thanks, we should remember today – the profound significance of the date – and the absent presence of a man whose death, dark and bloody as it was, is a sign of hope in these dark times. For if John …

JFK at 100: The War on Our Heroes Part 2

In the first half of this article, published on JFK’s centenary, I discussed the general degradation of the intellectual and moral character of figurehead politicians, the concomitant societal decay, and whether or not this is a deliberate policy or a by-product of promoting sociopaths above their ability to function.

In this half we will re-examine the death of JFK, not just as a simple assassination, but as an act of psychic-warfare on the general populace, and explore the long-lasting effect on the American psyche.

“Conspiracies don’t happen….here.”

The US alphabet agencies recently released some formerly classified files on JFK. There’s nothing much in them, because well…why would there be? Supposing the CIA were complicit, who’s going to release, 50 years after the event, the evidence of their own coup? We haven’t covered it here, at OffG, because it doesn’t really need any attention. It’s a charity dump, a distraction. It allows Trump to look like he’s combating the Deep State, when in fact he’s firmly on the leash. That the CIA or FBI didn’t suddenly produce proof of their complicity in JFK’s assassination is not evidence of anything. Jonathan Freedland, writing one of his toxic editorials in The Guardian, begs to differ.

9/11: How it costs you friends

by Harvey Burgess I recently had an upsetting exchange with a good friend, brought about by my assertion that: “The Americans did 9-11 to themselves.” My remark brought to an abrupt end a perfectly calm and rational discussion, over dinner, about Geo-Politics. I saw a side of my friend I had never seen before. If I had confessed to hacking into his bank account and stealing a thousand pounds he could not have been angrier. He was extremely hostile and refused to engage with me on the subject. Let me admit straight away that this was not the first time that my opinion on 9-11 had landed me in deep water with friends and family. “Why not avoid the topic?” I hear you ask. Well, often I do but, on occasion, when the conversation moves in a certain direction, I feel compelled to express my views. What is extraordinary to me is that otherwise rational, discourse-loving people completely shut down when it comes to 9-11 and treat me as though I am some kind of …

Incontrovertible – the “truth” about 9/11

by Philip Roddis As part of our “9/11 fifteen years on” series, Roddis tells us why 9/11 “conspiracy theories” tend to be “pants” Dylan Avery made four versions of Loose Change, setting out the ‘Truther’ case for 9/11 as an inside job to legitimate Bush-Cheney’s middle east capers. I saw the first cut twice, thought it tripe and still do. Why? False flag attacks are hardly unheard of. The Northwoods Proposal of 1962 sought Kennedy’s approval for a CIA strike on Florida or Guantanemo, to be blamed on Castro prior to bombing Havana. Kennedy turned it down flat and had its key advocate, Joint Chiefs of Staff chair Lyman Lemnitzer, kicked side­ways; though that didn’t prevent his resurrection a year later as NATO supremo. For obvious reasons a recurring feature of conspiracy theories is their invoking of earlier, proven conspiracies. The Daily Mail’s Zinoviev Letter is one example, the Proto­cols of the Elders of Zion another. But while it doesn’t do to underestimate human nast­iness, there’s a clue in the ‘human’ part – it doesn’t …