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Conspiracy Theories and Clandestine Politics

A useful analysis of distinctions which should be maintained between "conspiracy theory" (a pathological orientation) and "clandestine [or "deep"] politics". From Lobster #29, June 1995.
n Aus Metternichs nachgelassenen Papieren, ed. by Richard Metternich-Winneburg (Vienna: 1881),vol. 1, p. 595, cited in Rogalla von Bieberstein, These von der Verschwrung, pp. 139-40.

10. Dieter Groh, 'Temptation of Conspiracy Theory, Part I', in Changing Conceptions of Conspiracy, p. 3. A classic example of conspiratorial works that view modern revolutionary movements as little more than the latest manifestations of subversive forces with a very long historical pedigree is the influential book by Nesta H. Webster, Secret Societies and Subversive Movements (London: Boswell, 1924). For more on Webster's background, see the biographical study by Richard M. Gilman, Behind World Revolution: The Strange Career of Nesta H. Webster (Ann Arbor: Insight, 1982), of which only one volume has so far appeared.

11. Kooks: A Guide to the Outer Limits of Human Belief (Portland: Feral House, 1994), p. 191.

12. For more on P2, see above all the materials published by the Italian parliamentary commission investigating the organization, which are divided into the majority (Anselmi) report, five dissenting minority reports, and over one hundred thick volumes of attached documents and verbatim testimony before the commission. Compare also Martin Berger, Historia de la loggia masonica P2 (Buenos Aires: El Cid, 1983); Andrea Barbieri et al, L'Italia della P2 (Milan: Mondadori, 1981); Alberto Cecchi, Storia della P2 (Rome: Riuniti, 1985); Roberto Fabiani, I massoni in Italia (Milan: L'Espresso, 1978); Gianfranco Piazzesi, Gelli: La carriere di un eroe di questa Italia (Milan: Garzanti, 1983); Marco Ramat et al, La resistabile ascesa della P2: Poteri occulti e stato democratico (Bari: De Donato, 1983); Renato Risaliti, Licio Gelli, a carte scoperte (Florence: Fernando Brancato, 1991); and Gianni Rossi and Franceso Lombrassa, In nome della 'loggia': Le prove di come lamassoneria segreta ha tentato di impadronarsi dello stato italiano. Iretroscena della P2 (Rome: Napoleone, 1981). Pro P2 works include those of Gelli supporter Pier Carpi, Il caso Gelli: La verita sulla loggia P2 (Bologna: INEI, 1982); and the truly Orwellian work by Gelli himself, La verita (Lugano: Demetra, 1989), which in spite of its title bears little resemblance to the truth.

13. For the AB, see Ivor Wilkins and Hans Strydom, The Super-Afrikaners: Inside the Afrikaner Broederbond (Johannesburg: Jonathan Ball, 1978); and J.H.P.Serfontein, Brotherhood of Power: An Expose of the Secret Afrikaner Broederbond (Bloomington and L




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