Notes on the Conspiracy Crowd and Gaza

Back in October, American “intellectual dark web” pontificator Bret Weinstein lamented that Israel’s response to the Hamas massacre in southern Israel had the effect of being a “coalition dicer-slicer”, working to “divide and conquer in an information landscape”. By this, he meant that the political influencer networks that had developed out of Covid conspiracism risked falling apart over differing interpretations of the subsequent Gaza conflict. He didn’t go so far as to suggest that the conflict had been created for this purpose, although his cautious phrasing “this turn of events… whatever their nature, let’s say that they’re perfectly organic” did not rule out the idea.

In the UK, conspiracy influencers have attempted to navigate and take advantage of the issue in various ways. Laurence Fox’s Reclaim Party has characterised pro-Palestine marches in London as a failure of integration and as a conspiracy against Britain, particularly when one march took place on the afternoon of Saturday 11 November. Reclaim Party MP Andrew Bridgen issued a statement falsely describing the protestors as “protestors against the Remembrance service” and wildly alleged that they were “seeking to occupy Whitehall overnight” (1). However, more recently Bridgen has endorsed a statement put out by Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò alleging that Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislane were Mossad agents who sexually compromised world leaders, which is why politicians “do not dare to breathe a word against the massacres of civilians in the Gaza Strip” (2). In contrast, party ideologue Calvin Robinson has attempted to hedge in a different way, pointedly stating that “I haven’t made any pronouncements on Israel vs Palestine” – unlike in the case of Ukraine, where he happily endorsed claims that the conflict was some sort of media spectacle and that political support for Ukraine can be explained in terms of finanical corruption.

Meanwhile, there are no surprises from David Icke, who refers gratuitiously to the “Sabbatian Cult-controlled Israel government” and claims that it and Hamas both “answer to the Global Cult”. The need for a populist conspiracy angle is also evident from Maajid Nawaz, who describes Netanyahu as a “globalist traitor” and speculates that “Netanyahu probably BOUGHT Musk with the promise of WEF smart-city reconstruction military contracts in Gaza”.

Conspiracy influencer James Melville‘s angle is that the conflict is about “oil and gas reserves”, and he recently endorsed a crude statement, as expressed by someone in his social circle, that framed Israel’s actions in Gaza in terms of “genocidal maniacs & their cucked bootlickers”. Support for pro-Palestine marches has been expressed by Niall McCrae of TCW and the Covid anti-vax Workers of England Union, in conversation with Patrick Henningsen.

UPDATE: The anti-vax conspiracy cartoonist Bob Moran has posted online a prurient cartoon of various targets in a Roman bath scene, in which the water is replaced with blood; the tableau includes a figure supposed to be the conservative polemicist Douglas Murray (identified by the “Press” flak jacket he has been wearing recently while reporting from Gaza), in an intimate pose with Jordan Peterson. Netanyahu is depicted in a sexual scene with a masked figure representing Hamas.


1. Bridgen’s claims extrapolated from government and tabloid rhetoric: the populist then home secretary Suella Braverman described the protests as “hate marches” and whipped up a bogus threat to the Centotaph, while Rishi Sunak said that to protest on 11 November was inherently “disrespectual” – a position he later implicitly backed down from when he acknowledged “those who have chosen to express their views peacefully” at the National March for Palestine.

2. This endorsement (“The brave Archbishop Vigano speaks out again at personal risk to himself, people should listen”) may also be of interest to Matt Hancock, who is currently being sued for libel by Bridgen after stating that Bridgen has been spouting “anti-Semitic, anti-vax, anti-scientific conspiracy theories”.

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