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November 17, 2015

Anti-Semitic Conspiracy Theories Crop Up In Wake Of Paris Attacks

In the after­math of the wave of coordinated ter­ror attacks across Paris, con­spir­acy the­o­ries linking Jews or Israel with the attacks have begun to sur­face in the U.S and abroad.

al-alam-news-tweet-netanyahu-isis

Tweet from Iranian news channel Al-Alam

Supposed links between Israel and the Paris attacks have been discussed in international media outlets:

  • Iran’s Fars News Agency (FNA) published a report on November 16 that read in part: “After the terrorist attacks in Paris, it was once again confirmed that French Jews were informed that the tragedy would happen. Just as it happened in the September 11 attacks 14 years ago, when Jews working in the Twin Towers did not attend to work.” The report added that “Zionist officials wanted to exploit [the attacks] to achieve their specific goals.” The report listed several conspiratorial theories about Jewish responsibility for the September 11 attacks.
  • On November 14, Egypt-based Al-Asima TV interviewed Colonel Hatem Saber as an expert on international terrorism to comment on the Paris attacks. Saber suggested that Israel stands behind the terrorist attacks in Paris because France agreed to provide Egypt with arms, which was considered threatening to Israel.
  • A cartoon tweeted by the Iranian news channel Al-Alam on November 17, shows Israeli PM Netanyahu putting an explosive vest on an ISIS terrorist in the backdrop of the Eiffel Tower.

    al-arab-tweet-israel-paris-attacks

    Tweet from Qatari newspaper Al-Arab

  • A cartoon depicting Israel as the driving force behind the attack was published in Qatar’s Al-Arab newspaper on November 17 and circulated on Twitter. It shows Israel as the ultimate operator of the small figure in the picture, which represents terror.

These theories about the Paris attacks are similar to past conspiracies that have been circulated in the Middle East about Israel being behind ISIS.

In the U.S., fringe anti-Semitic con­spir­acy the­o­rists, who rarely miss an oppor­tu­nity to exploit tragedies to pro­mote their hatred of Jews, blamed Jews or Israel for the attacks, much as they did after the January terror attacks in Paris.

  • Mark Glenn, a vir­u­lently anti-Semitic con­spir­acy the­o­rist, posted an image on his blog The Ugly Truth on November 15 of a dog thinking “All the ISIS guys smell like Mossad” in a post titled “France should have beefed up anti-terror laws.”  In a November 16 post on the attacks, Glenn wrote “Until people begin to grasp this simple fact, that there is no such thing as a ‘good Jew’, and that Judaism–AT ITS CORE AND FROM THE MOMENT OF ITS INCEPTION–is and has been the embodiment of religiously-induced mental illness, the world will continue to march at break-neck speed towards its own destruction, the people of the Middle East being its first victims, and then everyone else, one by one, taking their turn as well.”
  • On November 16 in Vet­er­ans Today, a U.S.-based web­site that presents anti-Semitic con­spir­acy the­o­ries as news, a Pakistani contributor named Sajjad Shuakat wrote in an article titled “Is Israel Behind Paris Attacks?” that “…we are living in a world of Zionist-controlled media which is very strong and whatever it release [sic] by concealing truth and propagating Israeli interests as part of the disinformation, impress the politicians and general masses in the whole world.”

    mary-hughes-thompson-anti-semitic-tweet

    Retweet from anti-Israel activist Mary Hughes-Thompson

  • Kevin Bar­rett, an anti-Semitic con­spir­acy the­o­rist and fre­quent con­trib­u­tor to Iran’s Eng­lish lan­guage pro­pa­ganda news net­work, Press TV, wrote a November 13 arti­cle in Vet­er­ans Today titled “Another French False Flag?” In the article Barrett states that “Since we now know the Charlie Hebdo attack was a…false flag by the usual suspects (NATO hardliners and Zionists), can we safely make the same assumption about these new Friday the 13th Paris atrocities? I think we can.” Barrett added “The first question, as always, is: Who gains? And the answer, as always, is: Authoritarian insiders. Zionists. Militarists. Islamophobes. New World Order-Out-Of-Chaos freaks.”
mary-hughes-thompson tweet

Tweet from anti-Israel activist Mary Hughes-Thompson

At least one anti-Israel activist also linked Jews and Israel to the attacks:

  • On November 14, Anti-Israel activist Mary Hughes-Thompson, co-founder of the Free Gaza Move­ment, tweeted that “I haven’t accused Israel of involvement. Still, Bibi [Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu] is upset about the European settlement boycott. So who knows.” She also posted a cartoon on her Twitter page depicting an anti-Semitic caricature of a Jewish man saying “Merci [Thank you]” to an ISIS fighter, with the comment that “Everything is working out as planned. Soon those White goyim will be on their knees.”

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April 24, 2015

Kevin Barrett Promotes New Book Claiming Israel Behind Paris Attacks

Update — 5/27/15: Barrett is continuing his speaking tour with stops in Michigan, Ontario, Alberta, California, Washington, and Georgia in May-August.

Kevin Barrett, anti-Semitic conspiracy theorist and frequent Press TV contributor, is on a speaking tour of the Midwest from April 19-30 to promote his new anti-Semitic and conspiratorial book, We Are Not Charlie Hebdo! Free Thinkers Question the French 9/11.

Cover of Barrett's new book

Cover of Barrett’s new book

According to Barrett, his book tour includes stops at public libraries in Iowa, the Islamic Society of Greater Kansas City, the Islamic Foundation of Greater St. Louis, as well as stops in Peoria, Illinois and Milwaukee and Madison, Wisconsin.

A photo posted on Facebook shows approximately 15 people in attendance for his talk in Fairfield, Iowa.

Barrett’s We Are Not Charlie Hebdo! Free Thinkers Question the French 9/11 features essays by Barrett as well as from twenty-one others, most of which claim that the shootings at the Charlie Hebdo headquarters and at a kosher market in Paris were a “false flag operation” perpetrated by any number of culprits including the Israeli government, the United States government, and/or the French government.

The majority of the interviews and essays featured in the anthology allege that Israel, with or without help from the United States, orchestrated the attacks. Barrett claims that these attacks were just one in a long history of events – such as the 9/11 attacks and the 2001 anthrax poisonings – perpetrated by Israel in order to “incite hatred of Muslims and solidarity with Israel.”

Such conspiracy theories are nothing new for Barrett, who recently appeared on Iran’s English-language propaganda network, Press TV, where he claimed that Jews and/or Israel were behind the cre­ation of ISIS, the 2011 attacks in Nor­way that left 77 peo­ple dead, and the 9/11 ter­ror­ist attacks.

In his new book, Barrett invokes anti-Semitic conspiracy theories about supposed Jewish manipulation of world events, claiming that the West does not comprehend Israel’s duplicity because of “the extent of clandestine Zionist power; and the fact that the Holocaust story has become the most sacred narrative of the West, despite the questionable factual basis of some of its most important details.”

Photo posted on Facebook of Barrett speaking in Fairfield, Iowa

Photo posted on Facebook of Barrett speaking in Fairfield, Iowa

This theme is echoed by anti-Semitic columnist Paul Craig Roberts, who writes that Israel committed the Paris attacks to nefariously influence the French government’s policies on the Middle East. The attacks, he alleges, “served Israel’s destruction of Palestinians and stifled rising European opposition to Israel’s theft of the West Bank and military assaults on Gaza.”

9/11 conspiracy theorist Barbara Honegger posited other motivations for Israel to have committed the Paris attacks. Honegger writes, “Israel was a secret hand behind the attacks designed to fan the fear of violent anti-Semitism toward the goal of mitigating its growing demographic crisis by increasing Jewish emigration to Israel.”

Ashahed Muhammad, assistant Editor of the Nation of Islam’s Final Call newspaper and author of The Synagogue of Satan, does not state explicitly that Israel is to blame for the Charlie Hebdo shooting, but does maintain that “in media, politics, academia, or social activism, the world is bullied into compulsory obedience by the muscular Israel first lobby,” raising anti-Semitic conspiracy theories about supposed Jewish control of a number of sectors of society.

One notable exception to the “false flag” narrative promoted by Barrett’s book is an essay by Rabbi Michael Lerner. Lerner reportedly was “absolutely misled” by Barrett when Barrett asked the rabbi’s permission to include his writing in the book.

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April 18, 2013

Extremists and Conspiracy Theorists React to Boston Marathon Terrorist Attack

Forty-eight hours after Monday’s horrific terrorist attack targeting the Boston Marathon, which left 3 people dead and close to 200 injured, extremist and anti-government conspiracy theories about who was responsible are spreading across the Internet.

A screenshot from the anti-Semitic conspiracy website “nodisinfo.com.”

The lack of information currently available to the public about possible perpetrators has not kept extremists from jumping to conclusions.  Conspiracy theorists spanning the ideological spectrum – from anti-Muslim bigots to white supremacists – have accused different groups and individuals of perpetrating the bombing.

Here’s just a sampling of these accusations. A comprehensive overview of extremist reactions to the Boston attack can be found here: Boston Bombing Prompts Extremist Conspiracy Theories.

Conspiracy theorist Mark Glenn claimed that the bombing in Boston may have been orchestrated by Israel as a “way of not only rubbing manure in Barack Obama’s face” but also to demonstrate what Israel is capable of doing to the United States. He blamed the Jewish community and the State of Israel for a number of attacks against Americans, adding “You in the Jewish community and in the pro-Israel community…you have a criminal record.” Glenn concluded, “It is very possible that this is an Israeli false flag event, but we’ll have to wait and see.”

Others claimed they were sure Muslims were behind the attack. Quran-burning Florida pastor Terry Jones released a statement that read, “Is it an Islamic attack? It looks like it. The bombing came on Patriots Day. It has all of the earmarkings (sic) of an Islamic attack but will there again be a great coverup by the Great Satan Obama? His Administration, the people he has surrounded himself with, are all some type of closet Muslims, heavily influenced by Islam because of their background.”

Anti-government extremists have described the attack as a “false flag” operation orchestrated by the U.S. government as a pretext to curtail Americans’ civil liberties. 

Other extreme organizations seemed satisfied with the attack and went so far as to describe it as a divine act. The virulently homophobic Westboro Baptist Church, for example, announced that it would picket the victims’ funerals and that the attack was a result of God’s anger about gay rights in America.

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