In the broad spectrum of conspiracy theories widespread in the Middle East (Gray, 2010; Pipes, 1998; Butter and Reinkowski, 2014), the Judeo-Masonic conspiracy myth has met with special success. As I already pointed out in previous essays (De Poli, 2014, 2018a), the imagery of the Judeo-Masonic plot is rooted in European conspiracy tradition but, in the Levant, it follows an original path resulting from specific historical reasons. Anti-Masonic propaganda was spread by Catholic milieus since the eighteenth century but deeply infiltrated different Islamic contexts only after the foundation of the State of Israel, when the anti-Jewish and anti-Masonic conspiracy imagery became a perfect anti-Zionist tool: the myth of the Jewish-Masonic plot has been widely used and fostered by numerous governments in the Middle East to fight Israel, demonising the enemy. In this chapter, I will focus on propaganda cultivated and promoted in religious environments – Christian (where it originated) and Islamic – official institutions or Islamic organisations such as movements and parties or jihadi groups. In the global framework, religious propaganda of Christian and Islamic origin, against Freemasons and Jews, had – and has – a very deep impact and played a major role in the ban of Freemasonry and in depicting Masons and Jews as evil foes.

Jesuit Fathers, Maronites, Muslim ʿUlamāʾ, and Islamists: The Role of Religious Institutions and Organisations in the Spread of the Judeo-Masonic Conspiracy Myth in the Middle East

Barbara De Poli
In corso di stampa

Abstract

In the broad spectrum of conspiracy theories widespread in the Middle East (Gray, 2010; Pipes, 1998; Butter and Reinkowski, 2014), the Judeo-Masonic conspiracy myth has met with special success. As I already pointed out in previous essays (De Poli, 2014, 2018a), the imagery of the Judeo-Masonic plot is rooted in European conspiracy tradition but, in the Levant, it follows an original path resulting from specific historical reasons. Anti-Masonic propaganda was spread by Catholic milieus since the eighteenth century but deeply infiltrated different Islamic contexts only after the foundation of the State of Israel, when the anti-Jewish and anti-Masonic conspiracy imagery became a perfect anti-Zionist tool: the myth of the Jewish-Masonic plot has been widely used and fostered by numerous governments in the Middle East to fight Israel, demonising the enemy. In this chapter, I will focus on propaganda cultivated and promoted in religious environments – Christian (where it originated) and Islamic – official institutions or Islamic organisations such as movements and parties or jihadi groups. In the global framework, religious propaganda of Christian and Islamic origin, against Freemasons and Jews, had – and has – a very deep impact and played a major role in the ban of Freemasonry and in depicting Masons and Jews as evil foes.
Religious Dimensions of Conspiracy Theories. Comparing and Connecting Old and New Trends
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/10278/5004351
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