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Published on October 5th, 2008 | by Eli Clifton

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From Clarion: A Protocols of the Elders of Islam?

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A Guest Post by Eli Clifton:

The past month has brought great scrutiny upon the elusive Clarion Fund–the funders of a nationwide distribution of Obesssion: Radical Islam’s War Against the West. Despite the increased attention, Clarion may be pushing for their own “October Surprise” in a brand new documentary released Sunday.

Clarion, on which we have published a recent investigative piece, is the surprisingly well-funded group that emerged in recent months to disseminate anti-Muslim propaganda in the run-up to the November election.

The film, The Third Jihad: Radical Islam’s Vision for America seems, perhaps even more explicitly than Obsession, designed to stir up a climate of fear in the United States in the weeks before the presidential election.

So what is The Third Jihad about exactly? The trailer on its websites says very little, but the brief synopsis tells us more than the film makers may have hoped.

On October 3rd the synopsis reads as follows:

“After the FBI releases a radical Islamist manifesto describing how to weaken America from within, Dr. Zuhdi Jasser, a Muslim American and former physician to the US Congress, decides to investigate. The Third Jihad is about what he discovered.

How is radical Islam operating inside the West? Is a subversive “cultural jihad” underway? How does radical Islam plan to bring America to its knees? What is the endgame?”

And a couple of weeks ago the synopsis mentioned an “infiltration”, a “dominating of North America” and “destroying Western civilization.”

On September 21st the synopsis read:

“The Third Jihad focuses on an FBI-discovered secret document—the manifesto of the American Muslim Brotherhood. It describes the ‘grand jihad’ goal of destroying Western civilization from within by infiltrating and dominating North America.

The film reveals the agenda of the radical Muslim leaders in America and provides viewers with an impressively crafted look at the immediate dangers posed.”

Ah, secret, recently uncovered documents. A “goal of destroying Western civilization from within.” A grand conspiracy organized by a globally networked religious minority. Sound familiar yet? Could be because it’s echoing one of the most influential and persistent conspiracy theories of all time. The Protocols of the Elders of Zion.

The Protocols, which first emerged in 1903, detailed the sinister Jewish plan for world domination. A proven forgery, the document played important roles in the rise of Nazism and during the Great Depression. Still published today, the Protocols, widely available on the internet, serve as a playbook for anti-Semites seeking to portray Jews as pulling the strings of global power through their business, cultural and political influence.

Daniel Pipes, who appears in Obsession, writes the following observations about the Protocols in his book: Conspiracy: How the Paranoid Style Flourishes and Where It Comes From.

“The great importance of the Protocols lies in its permitting antisemites to reach beyond their traditional circles and find a large international audience, a process that continues to this day. The forgery poisoned public life wherever it appeared; it was “self-generating; a blueprint that migrated from one conspiracy to another.” The book’s vagueness — almost no names, dates, or issues are specified — has been one key to this wide-ranging success. The purportedly Jewish authorship also helps to make the book more convincing. Its embrace of contradiction — that to advance, Jews use all tools available, including capitalism and communism, philo-Semitism and antisemitism, democracy and tyranny — made it possible for the Protocols to reach out to all: rich and poor, Right and Left, Christian and Muslim, American and Japanese.”

So it looks as if The Third Jihad has taken a lesson from one of the most influential pieces of anti-Semitic propaganda ever produced. Clarion seeks to tell us that a secret document, authored by Muslims, details the systematic way in which Muslims plan to “infiltrate” and “dominate” Western civilization and destroy it from within.

One hundred and five years after the Protocols of the Elders of Zion first appeared, it is amazing to see the same ideas, paranoia, conspiracy-mongering, distrust and racism manifest themselves in such a blatant manner.

Here is a trailer for The Third Jihad:

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About the Author

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Eli Clifton is a reporting fellow with The Investigative Fund at The Nation Institute who focuses on money in politics and US foreign policy. He previously reported for the American Independent New Network, ThinkProgress, and Inter Press Service.



16 Responses to From Clarion: A Protocols of the Elders of Islam?

  1. avatar Lee Kaplan says:

    Why is my comment awaiting moderation? So it can be censored?

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