Ben Garrison and Mike Cernovich Step Back from “Rothschild Puppet-Master” Image

A detail from an Atlantic article about Trump’s National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster:

The provocative right-wing blogger and activist Mike Cernovich has launched a sustained attack on McMaster, including setting up a website called When it launched, the main page displayed a large cartoon of the Rothschilds controlling a George Soros puppet, which in turn controlled puppets representing McMaster and former CIA director David Petraeus. (The hand labeled “Rothschilds” has since been relabeled “Saudis.” Cernovich told me he changed it because complaints about the cartoon’s anti-Semitism are “not a hill to die on,” and “if everybody wants to complain, then fine—I’ll just put the Saudis at the top.”)

The cartoon was drawn by alt-right favourite Ben Garrison, and it looks like Garrison himself provided the amended version – a nice example of the cynical flexibility and insincerity of those for whom promoting conspiracy theories is primarily a means to public influence rather than an end in itself (also previously seen in Cernovich’s “Pizzagate” claims).

Cernovich’s conspiracy theory that “Rothschilds” improperly wield secret power has previously focused on Hilary Clinton’s association with Lynn Forester de Rothschild. The two women have been friends for a long time, and some old informal email exchanges were published by Wikileaks last year. Cernovich was among those who suggested (here and here) that these innocuous messages were a revelation that showed how Clinton is personally subservient to Lynn Forester de Rothschild, and by extension to the Rothschild banking family.

Of course, it could be argued that to say that the Rothschilds control American politics does not mean that Jews in general have improper influence. But this doesn’t wash. Unsurprisingly, Hilary Clinton has personal and professional links with many powerful establishment figures – why focus on the one whose surname is Rothschild, other than that the name is already associated with conspiracy theories that have an explicit anti-Semitic provenance?

Further, there zero evidence that “Rothschilds” have played any part in decisions made by either McMaster or Petraeus, and there is no explanatory value in proposing such a suggestion. The aim is purely to make us resent a particular Jewish banking family as an exemplar of hidden forces that supposedly explain unfairness in the world.

I made similar observations a few months ago, when I discussed the use of the phrase “Rothschild Zionism” on the conspiracy-theorist left.

(H/T @YAppelbaum)