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30 October 2008 @ 11:14 pm
Guest Writer - Fenris, "September 11th, Conspiracy Theories, and the New Anti-Semitism"  
This is an extremely long overdue post sent in by Fenris of www.fenrisdesigns.com. My sincerest apologies for not getting it up sooner, rarely does my procrastination get such a hold on me... My thanks also for such a well-written article :)

September 11th, Conspiracy Theories, and the New Anti-Semitism

Conspiracy theories have always existed, and as long as there was Judaism, there was anti-Semitism. Oddly enough, even though there was always a kinship between conspiracy theorists and anti-Semites, a combination of the two seldom achieved mainstream popularity, the notable exception yielding the worst breach of human rights of all time. A driving force behind the event in question was the belief in such publications as Martin Luther’s On the Jews and Their Lies and The Protocols of the Elders of Zion.

Since World War II, anti-Semitic conspiracy theorists have generally been social pariahs. They did have time to expand their arsenal of claims in the meantime: Holocaust denial, alleged control over the Federal Reserve, the “kosher tax,” media control, and their newest addition, the allegation that Jews were responsible for the September 11th attacks.

By no means do I assume that all, or even most members of the self-proclaimed 9/11 Truth Movement make that claim, nor do most of their highest-profile spokespersons. I do believe, however, that the naïveté of the collective membership has allowed for anti-Semitic individuals and racist organizations to influence them, arousing minimal alert from the Movement itself. Whoever is tipped off to anti-Semites’ true motives tend to dilute such vices in an attempt bring attention to more mainstream Truther claims.

It is not fair to use the argument, “Neo-Nazis support your claims; therefore, you’re wrong.” However, in many cases I find the support between anti-Semites and certain Truthers is mutual.

In February 2007, Eric D. Williams hosted the 9/11 Accountability Conference in Chandler, Arizona. Attendees included physicist Steven Jones, filmmaker Sofia Shafquat, virulent anti-Semitic writer Eric Hufschmid, and LaRouchian Senatorial candidate Webster Tarpley. Invited speakers included Dylan Avery, the director of Loose Change, and Austin-based radio commentator Alex Jones. They declined to attend because they refused to be associated with Williams, a Holocaust denier and author of The Puzzle of Auschwitz, who used to conference to push the notion that Jews did the terror attacks.

Did Avery and Jones escape the hate speech? In Jones’ case, the plot only thickens. In April this year, Jones promoted on his radio show a two-part claim recited by a caller: that the majority of Jews are really Turkic migrants, and that Nordic, Celtic, and Germanic migrants represent a “lost tribe” of Israel, proverbial footholds of Neo-Nazi thinking. Genetic testing by the National Academy of Sciences in 1999 has put such claims into question.

Even more disturbing than Alex Jones’ claims are the people with whom he associated recently. Guests he’s had on his show, whom he subsequently advertised, include Mike Rivero of whatreallyhappened.com and Texe Marrs, leader of an End Times ministry who specializes in secret societies. On his website, outspoken Truther Rivero not only reveals himself as a Holocaust denier and believer in the Khazar theory, but also quotes the Franklin Prophecy, a 1930s hoax alleging that Benjamin Franklin attempted to deny Jews any Constitutional rights. Marrs’ claims are similar, and his online store includes such publications as The Synagogue of Satan and The Protocols of the Elders of Zion.

Other people who advertised with Jones were Peter J. Peters, a leader in the Christian Identity Movement, and unveilingthem.com, “them” referring to the Antichrist, or as the author clarifies, “the vast majority of the American Jews and all the Jews the world over.” It costs between $100 and $1100 a month to advertise on one of Jones’ websites.

Dylan Avery and the team behind Loose Change had never explicitly placed any accusations on Jews, and watching their movie, I have no reason to believe that either of them was being anti-Semitic. Unknowingly, however, Avery failed to dodge that bullet when he quoted Chris Bollyn of the American Free Press on the subject of Rolls Royce engines. Bollyn himself complained that Loose Change was too dilute to fit his own claims, among which concern “The Zionist Money behind 9/11,” “The Israeli Prime Minister’s Connection to 9/11,” and “The Italian Gangsters and their Jewish Bosses,” according to the titles of his archived articles. His virulence was enough to get him fired from the American Free Press and criticized by WING-TV, which, lo and behold, sells Texe Marrs publications on its website.

The bi-weekly American Free Press, a primary source for Loose Change, is not without skeletons in its closet, either. The Anti-Defamation League reported on two books for which American Free Press gave high reviews: Enemies by Design, which alleges a LaRouchian history of so-called Christian-Jewish Zionism, and Evil: Israel's Central Role in the September 11, 2001, Terrorist Attacks. That title is self-explanatory. The Anti-Defamation League offers a more thorough colonoscopy of explicit anti-Semitism in the Truth Movement, even if it doesn’t cite their connections to the mainstream of the movement.

In Avery’s case, he appears completely oblivious to these disturbing facts. This is more a matter of opportunism, or absence of reputable sources, stemming primarily from the trend for conspiracy theorists to form a conclusion before making extensive observations.

What do these links between the two groups leave us? In July 2006, a shooting occurred at the Seattle Jewish Federation, killing one and wounding five. The shooter reported to police that “these are Jews. I’m tired of getting pushed around, and our people getting pushed around by the situation in the Middle East.”

Again, it’s not fair to assume that just because an undesirable group supports you, your claims are automatically invalid. However, with the Truth Movement, this is hardly the case. Keep believing your conspiracy theories if you wish. However, also keep an eye open for your sources, and your sources’ sources. Then, willing, we can live tolerably, with discretion, and finally find that elusive “truth” we are all searching for.