Novi Svetski Poredak - NWO

New World Order (conspiracy theory)

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This article is about the use of the term New World Order in conspiracy theory. For other uses, see New World Order.

The reverse side of the 
 (1776). The Latin phrase "

", appearing on the reverse side of the Great Seal since 1782 and on the back of the U.S. one-dollar bill since 1935, translates to "New Order of the Ages"[1] and alludes to the beginning of an era where the United States of America is an independent nation-state; conspiracy theorists claim this is an allusion to the "New World Order".[2]

As a conspiracy theory, the term New World Order or NWO refers to the emergence of a totalitarian world government.[3][4][5][6][7]

The common theme in conspiracy theories about a New World Order is that a secretive power elite with a globalist agenda is conspiring to eventually rule the world through an authoritarian world government—which will replace sovereign nation-states—and an all-encompassing propaganda whose ideology hails the establishment of the New World Order as the culmination of history's progress. Many influential historical and contemporary figures have therefore been purported to be part of a cabal that operates through many front organizations to orchestrate significant political and financial events, ranging from causing systemic crises to pushing through controversial policies, at both national and international levels, as steps in an ongoing plot to achieve world domination.[3][4][5][6][7]

Before the early 1990s, New World Order conspiracism was limited to two American countercultures, primarily the militantly anti-government right and secondarily that part of fundamentalist Christianity concerned with the end-time emergence of the Antichrist.[8] Skeptics such as Michael Barkun and Chip Berlet observed that right-wing populist conspiracy theories about a New World Order had not only been embraced by many seekers of stigmatized knowledge but had seeped into popular culture, thereby inaugurating a period during the late 20th and early 21st centuries in the United States where people are actively preparing for apocalyptic millenarian scenarios.[4][6] Those political scientists are concerned that mass hysteria over New World Order conspiracy theories could eventually have devastating effects on American political life, ranging from escalating lone-wolf terrorism to the rise to power of authoritarian ultranationalist demagogues.[4][6][9]

 

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History of the term

During the 20th century many politicians, such as Woodrow Wilson and Winston Churchill, used the term "new world order" to refer to a new period of history characterised by a dramatic change in world political thought and in the balance of power after World War I and World War II.[citation needed] They all saw the period as an opportunity to implement idealistic proposals for global governance in the sense of new collective efforts to address worldwide problems that go beyond the capacity of individual nation-states to solve, while always respecting the right of nations to self-determination. These proposals led to the formation of international organizations (such as the UN in 1945 and NATO in 1949), and international regimes (such as the Bretton Woods system (1944-1971) and the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT, 1947-1994)), which were calculated[by whom?]both to maintain a balance of power in favor of the United States and to regularize cooperation between nations, in order to achieve a peaceful phase of capitalism. These creations in particular and liberal internationalism in general, however, were regularly criticized and opposed by American paleoconservative business nationalists from the 1930s on.[10][need quotation to verify]

Progressives welcomed these new international organizations and regimes in the aftermath of the two World Wars, but argued that they suffered from a democratic deficit and were therefore inadequate not only to prevent another global war but to foster global justice. The United Nations was designed in 1945 by US bankers and State Department planners, and was always intended to remain a free association of sovereign nation-states, not a transition to democratic world government. Thus, activists around the globe formed a world federalist movement, hoping in vain to create a "real" new world order.[11]

British writer and futurist H. G. Wells went further than progressives in the 1940s, by appropriating and redefining the term "new world order" as a synonym for the establishment of a technocratic world state and of a planned economy.[12] Despite the popularity of his ideas in some state-socialist circles, Wells failed to exert a deeper and more lasting influence because he was unable to concentrate his energies on a direct appeal to the intelligentsias who would ultimately have to coordinate a Wellsian new world order.[13]

During the Red Scare of 1947–1957, agitators of the American secular and Christian right, influenced by the work of Canadian conspiracy theorist William Guy Carr, increasingly embraced and spread unfounded fears of FreemasonsIlluminati and Jews as the alleged driving forces behind an "international communist conspiracy". The threat of "Godless communism", in the form of a state atheistic and bureaucratic collectivist world government, demonized as the "Red Menace", therefore became the focus of apocalypticmillenarian conspiracism. The Red Scare came to shape one of the core ideas of the political right in the United States, which is that liberals and progressives, with their welfare-state policies and international cooperation programs such as foreign aid, supposedly contribute to a gradual process of collectivism that will inevitably lead to nations being replaced with a communist one-world government.[14]

Right-wing populist advocacy groups with a paleoconservative world-view, such as the John Birch Society, disseminated a multitude of conspiracy theories in the 1960s claiming that the governments of both the United States and the Soviet Union were controlled by a cabal of corporate internationalists, greedy bankers and corrupt politicians who were intent on using the U.N. as the vehicle to create a "One World Government". This right-wing anti-globalist conspiracism fuelled the Bircher campaign for US withdrawal from the UN. American writer Mary M. Davison, in her 1966 booklet The Profound Revolution, traced the alleged New World Order conspiracy to the establishment of the US Federal Reserve in 1913 by international bankers, whom she claimed later formed the Council on Foreign Relations in 1921 as a shadow government. At the time the booklet was published, many readers would have interpreted "international bankers" as a reference to a postulated "international Jewish banking conspiracy" masterminded by the Rothschilds.[14]

Claiming that the term "New World Order" is used by a secretive elite dedicated to the destruction of all national sovereignties, American writer Gary Allen—in his books None Dare Call It Conspiracy (1971), Rockefeller: Campaigning for the New World Order (1974), and Say "No!" to the New World Order (1987)—articulated the anti-globalist theme of much current right-wing populist conspiracism in the US. Thus, after the fall of communism in the early 1990s, the main demonized scapegoat of the American far right shifted seamlessly from crypto-communists, who plotted on behalf of the Red Menace, to globalists, plotting on behalf of the New World Order. The relatively painless nature of the shift was due to growing right-wing populist opposition to corporate internationalism, but also in part to the basic underlying apocalyptic millenarian paradigm, which fed the Cold War (ca 1947-1991) and the witch-hunts of the McCarthy period[14] (1950s).

In his speech, Toward a New World Order, delivered on September 11, 1990 during a joint session of the US Congress, President George H. W. Bush described his objectives for post-Cold War global governance in cooperation with post-Soviet states. He stated:

The New York Times observed that progressives were denouncing this new world order as a rationalization of American imperial ambitions in the Middle East, while conservatives rejected any new security arrangements altogether and fulminated about any possibility of a UN revival.[16] However, Chip Berlet, an American investigative reporter specializing in the study of right-wing movements in the US, writes:

American televangelist 
 wrote the 1991 best-selling book 

American televangelist Pat Robertson, with his 1991 best-selling book The New World Order, became the most prominent Christian popularizer of conspiracy theories about recent American history. He describes a scenario where Wall Street, the Federal Reserve System, the Council on Foreign Relations, the Bilderberg Group and the Trilateral Commission control the flow of events from behind the scenes, nudging people constantly and covertly in the direction of world government for the Antichrist.[6]

Observers note that the galvanizing of right-wing populist conspiracy theorists such as Linda ThompsonMark Koernke and Robert K. Spear into militancy led to the rise[when?] of the militia movement, which spread its anti-government ideology through speeches at rallies and meetings, books and videotapes sold at gun shows, shortwave and satellite radio, fax networks and computer bulletin boards.[14] However, it is overnight AM radio shows and viral propaganda on the Internet that have most effectively contributed to their extremist political ideas about the New World Order finding their way into the previously apolitical literature of numerous Kennedy assassinologistsufologistslost land theorists and, most recently, occultists. From the mid–1990s on, the worldwide appeal of those subcultures transmitted New World Order conspiracism like a "mind virus" to a large new audience of seekers of stigmatized knowledge.[6]

Hollywood conspiracy-thriller television shows and films also played a role in introducing a vast popular audience to various fringe theories related to New World Order conspiracism—black helicoptersFEMA "concentration camps", etc.— theories which for decades previously were confined to radical right-wing subcultures. The 1993–2002 television series The X-Files, the 1997 film Conspiracy Theory and the 1998 film The X-Files: Fight the Future are often cited as notable examples.[6]

Following the start of the 21st century, and specifically during the late-2000s financial crisis, many politicians and pundits, such as Gordon Brown[17] and Henry Kissinger,[18] used the term "new world order" in their advocacy for a comprehensive reform of the global financial system and their calls for a "New Bretton Woods" taking into account emerging markets such as China and India. These declarations had the unintended consequence of providing fresh fodder for New World Order conspiracism, which culminated in talk-show host Sean Hannity stating on his Fox News Channel program Hannity that the "conspiracy theorists were right".[19] Progressive media-watchdog groups have repeatedly criticized Fox News in general and its opinion show Glenn Beck in particular for not only mainstreaming the New World Order conspiracy theories of the radical right, but possibly agitating its lone wolves into action.[20][21]

In 2009 American film directors Luke Meyer and Andrew Neel released New World Order, a critically acclaimed documentary film which explores the world of conspiracy theorists - such as American radio host Alex Jones - who consistently expose and vigorously oppose what they perceive as an emerging New World Order.[22] The growing dissemination and popularity of conspiracy theories has also created an alliance between right-wing populist agitators (such as Alex Jones) and hip hop music's left-wing populist rappers (such as KRS-OneProfessor Griff of Public Enemy and Immortal Technique), thus illustrating how anti-elitist conspiracism can create unlikely political allies in efforts to oppose a political system.[23]

Conspiracy theories

There are numerous systemic conspiracy theories through which the concept of a New World Order is viewed. The following is a list of the major ones in roughly chronological order:[24]

End Time

Since the 19th century, many apocalyptic millennial Christian eschatologists, starting with John Nelson Darby, have predicted a globalist conspiracy to impose a tyrannical New World Order governing structure as the fulfillment of prophecies about the "end time" in the Bible, specifically in the Book of Ezekiel, the Book of Daniel, the Olivet discourse found in the Synoptic Gospels and the Book of Revelation.[25] They claim that people who have made a deal with the Devil to gain wealth and power have become pawns in a supernatural chess game to move humanity into accepting a utopian world government that rests on the spiritual foundations of a syncretic-messianic world religion, which will later reveal itself to be a dystopian world empire that imposes the imperial cult of an “Unholy Trinity” of Satan, the Antichrist and the False Prophet. In many contemporary Christian conspiracy theories, the False Prophet will be either the last pope of the Catholic Church (groomed and installed by an Alta Vendita or Jesuit conspiracy), a guru from the New Age movement, or even the leader of an elite fundamentalist Christian organization like the Fellowship, while the Antichrist will be either the President of the European Union, the Secretary-General of the United Nations, or even the Caliph of a pan-Islamic state.[6][25]

Some of the most vocal critics of end-time conspiracy theories come from within Christianity.[14] In 1993, historian Bruce Barron wrote a stern rebuke of apocalyptic Christian conspiracism in the Christian Research Journal, when reviewing Robertson's 1991 book The New World Order.[26]Another critique can be found in historian Gregory S. Camp's 1997 book Selling Fear: Conspiracy Theories and End-Times Paranoia.[3] Religious studies scholar Richard T. Hughes argues that "New World Order" rhetoric libels the Christian faith, since the "New World Order" as defined by Christian conspiracy theorists has no basis in the Bible whatsoever. Furthermore, he argues that not only is this idea unbiblical, it is positively anti-biblical and fundamentally anti-Christian, because by misinterpreting key passages in the Book of Revelation, it turns a comforting message about the coming kingdom of God into one of fear, panic and despair in the face of an allegedly approaching one-world government.[25] Progressive Christians, such as preacher-theologian Peter J. Gomes, caution Christian fundamentalists that a "spirit of fear" can distort scripture and history through dangerously combining biblical literalismapocalyptic timetablesdemonization and oppressive prejudices,[27][28] while Camp warns of the "very real danger that Christians could pick up some extra spiritual baggage" by credulously embracing conspiracy theories.[3] They therefore call on Christians who indulge in conspiracism to repent.[29][30]

Freemasonry

Freemasonry is one of the world's oldest secular fraternal organizations and arose during late 16th–early 17th century Britain. Over the years a number of allegations and conspiracy theories have been directed towards Freemasonry, including the allegation that Freemasons have a hidden political agenda and are conspiring to bring about a New World Order, a world government organized according to Masonic principles and/or governed only by Freemasons.[14]

The esoteric nature of Masonic symbolism and rites led to Freemasons first being accused of secretly practising Satanism in the late 18th century.[14] The original allegation of a conspiracy within Freemasonry to subvert religions and governments in order to take over the world traces back to Scottish author John Robison, whose reactionary conspiracy theories crossed the Atlantic and influenced outbreaks of Protestant anti-Masonry in the United States during the 19th century.[14] In the 1890s, French writer Léo Taxil wrote a series of pamphlets and books denouncing Freemasonry and charging their lodges with worshiping Lucifer as the Supreme Being and Great Architect of the Universe. Despite the fact that Taxil admitted that his claims were all a hoax, they were and still are believed and repeated by numerous conspiracy theorists and had a huge influence on subsequent anti-Masonic claims about Freemasonry.[31]

Some conspiracy theorists eventually speculated that some Founding Fathers of the United States, such as George Washington and Benjamin Franklin, were having Masonic sacred geometric designs interwoven into American society, particularly in the Great Seal of the United States, the United States one-dollar bill, the architecture of National Mall landmarks and the streets and highways of Washington, D.C., as part of a master plan to create the first "Masonic government" as a model for the coming New World Order.[6]

 room

Freemasons rebut these claims of a Masonic conspiracy. Freemasonry, which promotes rationalism, places no power in occult symbols themselves, and it is not a part of its principles to view the drawing of symbols, no matter how large, as an act of consolidating or controlling power.[32] Furthermore, there is no published information establishing the Masonic membership of the men responsible for the design of the Great Seal.[32][33] While conspiracy theorists assert that there are elements of Masonic influence on the Great Seal of the United States, and that these elements were intentionally or unintentionally used because the creators were familiar with the symbols,[34]in fact, the all-seeing Eye of Providence and the unfinished pyramid were symbols used as much outside Masonic lodges as within them in the late 18th century, therefore the designers were drawing from common esoteric symbols.[35] The Latin phrase "novus ordo seclorum", appearing on the reverse side of the Great Seal since 1782 and on the back of the one-dollar bill since 1935, translates to "New Order of the Ages",[1] and alludes to the beginning of an era where the United States of America is an independent nation-state; it is often mistranslated by conspiracy theorists as "New World Order".[2]

Although the European continental branch of Freemasonry has organizations that allow political discussion within their Masonic Lodges and a few operate as active political lobbies for secularist causes, as exemplified by the Grand Orient of France, Masonic researcher Trevor W. McKeown argues:

Illuminati

, founder of the 
, an 18th-century Bavarian liberal and secular secret society

The Order of the Illuminati was an Enlightenment-age secret society founded by university professor Adam Weishaupt on 1 May 1776, in Upper Bavaria, Germany. The movement consisted of advocates of freethoughtsecularismliberalismrepublicanism, and gender equality, recruited from the German Masonic Lodges, who sought to teach rationalism through mystery schools. In 1785, the order was infiltrated, broken up and suppressed by the government agents of Charles Theodore, Elector of Bavaria, in his preemptive campaign to neutralize the threat of secret societies ever becoming hotbeds of conspiracies to overthrow the Bavarian monarchy and its state religion, Roman Catholicism.[37]

In the late 18th century, reactionary conspiracy theorists, such as Scottish physicist John Robison and French Jesuit priest Augustin Barruel, began speculating that the Illuminati had survived their suppression and become the masterminds behind the French Revolution and the Reign of Terror. The Illuminati were accused of being subversives who were attempting to secretly orchestrate a revolutionary wave in Europe and the rest of the world in order to spread the most radical ideas and movements of the Enlightenment—anti-clericalismanti-monarchism, and anti-patriarchalism—and to create a world noocracy and cult of reason. During the 19th century, fear of an Illuminati conspiracy was a real concern of the European ruling classes, and their oppressive reactions to this unfounded fear provoked in 1848 the very revolutions they sought to prevent.[38]

During the interwar period of the 20th century, fascist propagandists, such as British revisionist historian Nesta Helen Webster and American socialite Edith Starr Miller, not only popularized the myth of an Illuminati conspiracy but claimed that it was a subversive secret society which served the Jewish elites that supposedly propped up both finance capitalism and Soviet communism in order to divide and rule the world. American evangelist Gerald Burton Winrod and other conspiracy theorists within the fundamentalist Christian movement in the United States—which emerged in the 1910s as a backlash against the principles of Enlightenment secular humanismmodernism, and liberalism—became the main channel of dissemination of Illuminati conspiracy theories in the U.S.. Right-wing populists, such as members of the John Birch Society, subsequently began speculating that some collegiate fraternities (Skull and Bones), gentlemen's clubs (Bohemian Club), and think tanks (Council on Foreign RelationsTrilateral Commission) of the American upper class are front organizations of the Illuminati, which they accuse of plotting to create a New World Order through a one-world government.[6]

There is no evidence that the Bavarian Illuminati survived its suppression in 1785.[38]

The Protocols of the Elders of Zion

The Protocols of the Elders of Zion is an antisemitic canard, originally published in Russian in 1903, alleging a Judeo-Masonic conspiracy to achieve world domination. The text purports to be the minutes of the secret meetings of a cabal of Jewish masterminds, which has co-opted Freemasonry and is plotting to rule the world on behalf of all Jews because they believe themselves to be the chosen people of God.[39] The Protocols incorporate many of the core conspiracist themes outlined in the Robison and Barruel attacks on the Freemasons, and overlay them with antisemitic allegations about anti-Tsarist movements in Russia. The Protocols reflect themes similar to more general critiques of Enlightenment liberalism by conservative aristocrats who support monarchies and state religions. The interpretation intended by the publication of The Protocols is that if one peels away the layers of the Masonic conspiracy, past the Illuminati, one finds the rotten Jewish core.[14]

Cover of a 1920 copy of 

Numerous polemicists, such as Irish journalist Philip Graves in a 1921 article in The Times, and British academic Norman Cohn in his 1967 book Warrant for Genocide, have proven The Protocols to be both a hoax and a clear case of plagiarism. There is general agreement that Russian-French writer and political activist Matvei Golovinski fabricated the text for Okhrana, the secret police of the Russian Empire, as a work of counter-revolutionary propaganda prior to the 1905 Russian Revolution, by plagiarizing, almost word for word in some passages, from The Dialogue in Hell Between Machiavelli and Montesquieu, a 19th-century satire against Napoleon III of France written by French political satirist and Legitimist militant Maurice Joly.[40]

Responsible for feeding many antisemitic and anti-Masonic mass hysterias of the 20th century, The Protocols has been influential in the development of some conspiracy theories, including some New World Order theories, and appears repeatedly in certain contemporary conspiracy literature.[6] For example, the authors of the 1982 controversial book The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail concluded that The Protocols was the most persuasive piece of evidence for the existence and activities of the Priory of Sion. They speculated that this secret society was working behind the scenes to establish a theocratic "United States of Europe". Politically and religiously unified through the imperial cult of a MerovingianGreat Monarch—supposedly descended from a Jesus bloodline—who occupies both the throne of Europe and the Holy See, this "Holy European Empire" would become the hyperpower of the 21st century.[41] Although the Priory of Sion itself has been exhaustively debunked by journalists and scholars as a hoax,[42] some apocalyptic millenarian Christian eschatologists who believe The Protocols is authentic became convinced that the Priory of Sion was a fulfillment of prophecies found in the Book of Revelation and further proof of an anti-Christian conspiracy of epic proportions signaling the imminence of a New World Order.[43]

Skeptics argue that the current gambit of contemporary conspiracy theorists who use The Protocols is to claim that they "really" come from some group other than the Jews, such as fallen angels or alien invaders. Although it is hard to determine whether the conspiracy-minded actually believe this or are simply trying to sanitize a discredited text, skeptics argue that it does not make much difference, since they leave the actual, antisemitic text unchanged. The result is to give The Protocols credibility and circulation.[8]

Round Table

During the second half of Britain's "imperial century" between 1815 and 1914, English-born South African businessman, mining magnate and politician Cecil Rhodes advocated the British Empire reannexing the United States of America and reforming itself into an "Imperial Federation" to bring about a hyperpower and lasting world peace. In his first will, written in 1877 at the age of 23, he expressed his wish to fund a secret society (known as the Society of the Elect) that would advance this goal:

 advocated a secret society which would make Britain control the Earth
Magnate and colonist 

In 1890, thirteen years after "his now famous will," Rhodes elaborated on the same idea: establishment of "England everywhere," which would "ultimately lead to the cessation of all wars, and one language throughout the world." "The only thing feasible to carry out this idea is a secret society gradually absorbing the wealth of the world ["and human minds of the higher order"] to be devoted to such an object."[45]

Rhodes also concentrated on the Rhodes Scholarship, which had British statesman Alfred Milner as one of its trustees. Established in 1902, the original goal of the trust fund was to foster peace among the great powers by creating a sense of fraternity and a shared world view among future British, American, and German leaders by having enabled them to study for free at the University of Oxford.[44]

Milner and British official Lionel George Curtis were the architects of the Round Table movement, a network of organizations promoting closer union between Britain and its self-governing colonies. To this end, Curtis founded the Royal Institute of International Affairs in June 1919 and, with his 1938 book The Commonwealth of God, began advocating for the creation of an imperial federation that eventually reannexes the U.S., which would be presented to Protestant churches as being the work of the Christian God to elicit their support.[46] The Commonwealth of Nations was created in 1949 but it would only be a free association of independent states rather than the powerful imperial federation imagined by Rhodes, Milner and Curtis.

The Council on Foreign Relations began in 1917 with a group of New York academics who were asked by President Woodrow Wilson to offer options for the foreign policy of the United States in the interwar period. Originally envisioned as a group of American and British scholars and diplomats, some of whom belonging to the Round Table movement, it was a subsequent group of 108 New York financiers, manufacturers and international lawyers organized in June 1918 by Nobel Peace Prize recipient and U.S. secretary of state Elihu Root, that became the Council on Foreign Relations on 29 July 1921. The first of the council’s projects was a quarterly journal launched in September 1922, called Foreign Affairs.[47] The Trilateral Commission was founded in July 1973, at the initiative of American banker David Rockefeller, who was chairman of the Council on Foreign Relations at that time. It is a private organization established to foster closer cooperation among the United States, Europe and Japan. The Trilateral Commission is widely seen as a counterpart to the Council on Foreign Relations.

In the 1960s, right-wing populist individuals and groups with a paleoconservative worldview, such as members of the John Birch Society, were the first to combine and spread a business nationalist critique of corporate internationalists networked through think tanks such as the Council on Foreign Relations with a grand conspiracy theory casting them as front organizations for the Round Table of the "Anglo-American Establishment", which are financed by an "international banking cabal" that has supposedly been plotting from the late 19th century on to impose an oligarchic new world order through a global financial system. Anti-globalist conspiracy theorists therefore fear that international bankers are planning to eventually subvert the independence of the U.S. by subordinating national sovereignty to a strengthened Bank for International Settlements.[48]

The research findings of historian Carroll Quigley, author of the 1966 book Tragedy and Hope, are taken by both conspiracy theorists of the American Old Right (W. Cleon Skousen) and New Left (Carl Oglesby) to substantiate this view, even though Quigley argued that the Establishment is not involved in a plot to implement a one-world government but rather British and American benevolent imperialism driven by the mutual interests of economic elites in the United Kingdom and the United States. Quigley also argued that, although the Round Table still exists today, its position in influencing the policies of world leaders has been much reduced from its heyday during World War I and slowly waned after the end of World War II and the Suez Crisis. Today the Round Table is largely a ginger group, designed to consider and gradually influence the policies of the Commonwealth of Nations, but faces strong opposition. Furthermore, in American society after 1965, the problem, according to Quigley, was that no elite was in charge and acting responsibly.[48]

Larry McDonald, the second president of the John Birch Society and a conservative Democratic member of the United States House of Representatives who represented the 7th congressional district of Georgia, wrote a foreword for Allen's 1976 book The Rockefeller File, wherein he stated:

In his 2002 autobiography Memoirs, David Rockefeller wrote:

Barkun argues that this statement is partly facetious (the claim of "conspiracy" and "treason") and partly serious—the desire to encourage trilateral cooperation among the U.S., Europe, and Japan, for example—an ideal that used to be a hallmark of the internationalist wing of the Republican Party (known as "Rockefeller Republicans" in honor of Nelson Rockefeller) when there was an internationalist wing. The statement, however, is taken at face value and widely cited by conspiracy theorists as proof that the Council on Foreign Relations uses its role as the brain trust of American presidents, senators and representatives to manipulate them into supporting a New World Order in the form of a one-world government.

In a 13 November 2007 interview with Canadian journalist Benjamin Fulford, Rockefeller countered:

Some American social critics, such as Laurence H. Shoup, argue that the Council on Foreign Relations is an "imperial brain trust" which has, for decades, played a central behind-the-scenes role in shaping U.S. foreign policy choices for the post-World War II international order and the Cold War by determining what options show up on the agenda and what options do not even make it to the table;[52] others, such as G. William Domhoff, argue that it is in fact a mere policy discussion forum[53] which provides the business input to U.S. foreign policy planning.[citation needed] Domhoff argues that "[i]t has nearly 3,000 members, far too many for secret plans to be kept within the group. All the council does is sponsor discussion groups, debates and speakers. As far as being secretive, it issues annual reports and allows access to its historical archives." However, all these critics agree[citation needed] that "[h]istorical studies of the CFR show that it has a very different role in the overall power structure than what is claimed by conspiracy theorists."[53]

The Open Conspiracy

In his 1928 book The Open Conspiracy British writer and futurist H. G. Wells promoted cosmopolitanism and offered blueprints for a world revolution and world brain to establish a technocratic world state and planned economy.[54] Wells warned, however, in his 1940 book The New World Order that:

Wells's books were influential in giving a second meaning to the term "new world order", which would only be used by state socialist supporters and anti-communist opponents for generations to come. However, despite the popularity and notoriety of his ideas, Wells failed to exert a deeper and more lasting influence because he was unable to concentrate his energies on a direct appeal to intelligentsias who would, ultimately, have to coordinate the Wellsian new world order.[55]

New Age

British neo-Theosophical occultist Alice Bailey, one of the founders of the so-called New Age movement, prophesied in 1940 the eventual victory of the Allies of World War II over the Axis powers (which occurred in 1945) and the establishment by the Allies of a political and religious New World Order. She saw a federal world government as the culmination of Wells' Open Conspiracy but favorably argued that it would be synarchist because it was guided by the Masters of the Ancient Wisdom, intent on preparing humanity for the mystical second coming of Christ, and the dawning of the Age of Aquarius. According to Bailey, a group of ascended masters called the Great White Brotherhood works on the "inner planes" to oversee the transition to the New World Order but, for now, the members of this Spiritual Hierarchy are only known to a few occult scientists, with whom they communicate telepathically, but as the need for their personal involvement in the plan increases, there will be an "Externalization of the Hierarchy" and everyone will know of their presence on Earth.[56]

 author 
's writings have been condemned by 
 conspiracy theorists

Bailey's writings, along with American writer Marilyn Ferguson's 1980 book The Aquarian Conspiracy, contributed to conspiracy theorists of the Christian right viewing the New Age movement as the "false religion" that would supersede Christianity in a New World Order.[57] Skeptics argue that the term "New Age movement" is a misnomer, generally used by conspiracy theorists as a catch-all rubric for any new religious movement that is not fundamentalist Christian. By this logic, anything that is not Christian is by definition actively and willfully anti-Christian.[58]

Paradoxically, since the first decade of the 21st century, New World Order conspiracism is increasingly being embraced and propagandized by New Age occultists, who are people bored by rationalism and drawn to stigmatized knowledge—such as alternative medicineastrologyquantum mysticismspiritualism, and theosophy.[6] Thus, New Age conspiracy theorists, such as the makers of documentary films like Esoteric Agenda, claim that globalists who plot on behalf of the New World Order are simply misusing occultism for Machiavellian ends, such as adopting 21 December 2012 as the exact date for the establishment of the New World Order for the purpose of taking advantage of the growing 2012 phenomenon, which has its origins in the fringe Mayanist theories of New Age writers José ArgüellesTerence McKenna, and Daniel Pinchbeck.

Skeptics argue that the connection of conspiracy theorists and occultists follows from their common fallacious premises. First, any widely accepted belief must necessarily be false. Second, stigmatized knowledge—what the Establishment spurns—must be true. The result is a large, self-referential network in which, for example, some UFO religionists promote anti-Jewish phobias while some antisemites practice Peruvian shamanism.[6]

Fourth Reich

 claims that former Nazis and their sympathizers have been continuing Nazi policies worldwide, especially in the United States
American writer 

Conspiracy theorists often use the term "Fourth Reich" simply as a pejorative synonym for the "New World Order" to imply that its state ideology and government will be similar to Germany's Third Reich. However, some conspiracy theorists use the research findings of American journalist Edwin Black, author of the 2009 book Nazi Nexus, to claim that some American corporations and philanthropic foundations—whose complicity was pivotal to the Third Reich's war effort, Nazi eugenics and the Holocaust—are now conspiring to build a Fourth Reich[dubious – discuss].

Conspiracy theorists, such as American writer Jim Marrs, claim that some ex-Nazis, who survived the fall of the Greater German Reich, along with sympathizers in the United States and elsewhere, given haven by organizations like ODESSA and Die Spinne, have been working behind the scenes since the end of World War II to enact at least some principles of Nazism (e.g., militarismimperialismwidespread spying on citizenscorporatism, the use of propaganda to manufacture a national consensus) into culture, government, and business worldwide, but primarily in the U.S. They cite the influence of ex-Nazi scientists brought in under Operation Paperclip to help advance aerospace manufacturing in the U.S. with technological principles from Nazi UFOs, and the acquisition and creation of conglomerates by ex-Nazis and their sympathizers after the war, in both Europe and the U.S.[59]

This neo-Nazi conspiracy is said to be animated by an "Iron Dream" in which the American Empire, having thwarted the Judeo-Masonic conspiracy and overthrown its Zionist Occupation Government, gradually establishes a Fourth Reich formerly known as the "Western Imperium"—a pan-Aryan world empire modeled after Adolf Hitler's New Order—which reverses the "decline of the West" and ushers a golden age of white supremacy.[60]

Skeptics argue that conspiracy theorists grossly overestimate the influence of ex-Nazis and neo-Nazis on American society, and point out that political repression at home and imperialism abroad have a long history in the United States that predates the 20th century. Some political scientists, such as Sheldon Wolin, have expressed concern that the twin forces of democratic deficit and superpower status have paved the way in the U.S. for the emergence of an inverted totalitarianism which contradicts many principles of Nazism.[61]

Alien invasion

Since the late 1970s, extraterrestrials from other habitable planets or parallel dimensions (such as "Greys") and intraterrestrials from Hollow Earth (such as "Reptilians") have been included in the New World Order conspiracy, in more or less dominant roles, as in the theories put forward by American writers Stan Deyo and Milton William Cooper, and British writer David Icke.[6][62][63]

British writer 
 claims that shapeshifting aliens called 
 control the Earth

The common theme in these conspiracy theories is that aliens have been among us for decades, centuries or millennia, but a government cover-up enforced by "Men in Black" has shielded the public from knowledge of a secret alien invasion. Motivated by speciesism and imperialism, these aliens have been and are secretly manipulating developments and changes in human society in order to more efficiently control and exploit human beings. In some theories, alien infiltrators have shapeshifted into human form and move freely throughout human society, even to the point of taking control of command positions in governmental, corporate, and religious institutions, and are now in the final stages of their plan to take over the world.[63] A mythical covert government agency of the United States code-named Majestic 12 is often imagined being the shadow government which collaborates with the alien occupation and permits alien abductions, in exchange for assistance in the development and testing of military "flying saucers" at Area 51, in order for United States armed forces to achieve full-spectrum dominance.[6]

Skeptics, who adhere to the psychosocial hypothesis for unidentified flying objects, argue that the convergence of New World Order conspiracy theory and UFO conspiracy theory is a product of not only the era's widespread mistrust of governments and the popularity of the extraterrestrial hypothesis for UFOs but of the far right and ufologists actually joining forces. Barkun notes that the only positive side to this development is that, if conspirators plotting to rule the world are believed to be aliens, traditional human scapegoats (FreemasonsIlluminatiJews, etc.) are downgraded or exonerated.[6]

Brave New World

Antiscience and neo-Luddite conspiracy theorists emphasize technology forecasting in their New World Order conspiracy theories. They speculate that the global power elite are reactionary modernists pursuing a transhumanist agenda to develop and use human enhancement technologies in order to become a "posthuman ruling caste", while change accelerates toward a technological singularity—a theorized future point of discontinuity when events will accelerate at such a pace that normal unenhanced humans will be unable to predict or even understand the rapid changes occurring in the world around them. Conspiracy theorists fear the outcome will either be the emergence of a Brave New World-like dystopia—a "Brave New World Order"—or the extinction of the human species.[64]

Democratic transhumanists, such as American sociologist James Hughes, counter that many influential members of the United States Establishment are bioconservatives strongly opposed to human enhancement, as demonstrated by President Bush's Council on Bioethics's proposed international treaty prohibiting human cloning and germline engineering. Furthermore, he argues that conspiracy theorists underestimate how fringe the transhumanist movement really is.[65]

Postulated implementations

Just as there are several overlapping or conflicting theories among conspiracists about the nature of the New World Order, so are there several beliefs about how its architects and planners will implement it:

Gradualism

Conspiracy theorists generally speculate that the New World Order is being implemented gradually, citing the formation of the U.S. Federal Reserve System in 1913; the League of Nations in 1919; the International Monetary Fund in 1944; the United Nations in 1945; the World Bank in 1945; the World Health Organization in 1948; the European Union and the euro currency in 1993; the World Trade Organization in 1998; the African Union in 2002; and the Union of South American Nations in 2008 as major milestones.[6]

An increasingly popular conspiracy theory among American right-wing populists is that the hypothetical North American Union and the amero currency, proposed by the Council on Foreign Relations and its counterparts in Mexico and Canada, will be the next milestone in the implementation of the New World Order. The theory holds that a group of shadowy and mostly nameless international elites are planning to replace the federal government of the United States with a transnational government. Therefore, conspiracy theorists believe the borders between Mexico, Canada and the United States are in the process of being erased, covertly, by a group of globalists whose ultimate goal is to replace national governments in Washington, D.C., Ottawa and Mexico City with a European-style political union and a bloated E.U.-style bureaucracy.[66]

Skeptics argue that the North American Union exists only as a proposal contained in one of a thousand academic and/or policy papers published each year that advocate all manner of idealistic but ultimately unrealistic approaches to social, economic and political problems. Most of these are passed around in their own circles and eventually filed away and forgotten by junior staffers in congressional offices. Some of these papers, however, become touchstones for the conspiracy-minded and form the basis of all kinds of unfounded xenophobic fears especially during times of economic anxiety.[66]

For example, in March 2009, as a result of the late-2000s financial crisis, the People's Republic of China and the Russian Federation pressed for urgent consideration of a new international reserve currency and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development proposed greatly expanding the I.M.F.'s special drawing rights. Conspiracy theorists fear these proposals are a call for the U.S. to adopt a single global currency for a New World Order.[67][68]

Judging that both national governments and global institutions have proven ineffective in addressing worldwide problems that go beyond the capacity of individual nation-states to solve, some political scientists critical of New World Order conspiracism, such as Mark C. Partridge, argue that regionalism will be the major force in the coming decades, pockets of power around regional centers: Western Europe around Brussels, the Western Hemisphere around Washington, D.C., East Asia around Beijing, and Eastern Europe around Moscow. As such, the E.U., the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, and the G-20 will likely become more influential as time progresses. The question then is not whether global governance is gradually emerging, but rather how will these regional powers interact with one another.[69]

Coup d'état

The American 
 claim that a 
 will be launched by a "

American right-wing populist conspiracy theorists, especially those who joined the militia movement in the United States, speculate that the New World Order will be implemented through a dramatic coup d'état by a "secret team", using black helicopters, in the U.S. and other nation-states to bring about a totalitarian world government controlled by the United Nations and enforced by troops of foreign U.N. peacekeepers. Following the Rex 84 and Operation Garden Plot plans, this military coup would involve the suspension of the Constitution, the imposition of martial law, and the appointment of military commanders to head state and local governments and to detain dissidents.[70]

These conspiracy theorists, who are all strong believers in a right to keep and bear arms, are extremely fearful that the passing of any gun control legislation will be later followed by the abolishment of personal gun ownership and a campaign of gun confiscation, and that the refugee camps of emergency management agencies such as FEMA will be used for the internment of suspected subversives, making little effort to distinguish true threats to the New World Order from pacifist dissidents.[21]

Before year 2000 some survivalists wrongly believed this process would be set in motion by the predicted Y2K problem causing societal collapse.[71] Since many left-wing and right-wing conspiracy theorists believe that the September 11 attacks were a false flag operation carried out by the United States intelligence community, as part of a strategy of tension to justify political repression at home and preemptive war abroad, they have become convinced that a more catastrophic terrorist incident will be responsible for triggering Executive Directive 51 in order to complete the transition to a police state.[72]

Skeptics argue that unfounded fears about an imminent or eventual gun ban, military coup, internment, or U.N. invasion and occupation are rooted in the siege mentality of the American militia movement but also an apocalyptic millenarianism which provides a basic narrative within the political right in the U.S., claiming that the idealized society (i.e., constitutional republic, Jeffersonian democracy, "Christian nation", "white nation") is thwarted by subversive conspiracies of liberal secular humanists who want "Big Government" and globalists who plot on behalf of the New World Order.[14]

Mass surveillance

Part of 
 on