One of the 1990s conspiracy theories which I recall hearing about in popular media and internet lore is that of the ‘Beast Computer’. The 1998 track ‘Information‘ off the (Wu-Tang-Clan affiliate) Killah Priest album ‘Heavy Mental‘ might be the best popular cultural example which I can to point to that may reflect this kind of thinking. (Much like the RATM canon artistically it’s not a bad album IMHO and I like the sound, although it is chock full of anti-Americanism. Just be sure to enjoy the lyrics critically from a strategic perspective as they probably relate to a legacy of disinformation.)
Much like the fabricated Nostradamus emails, usegroup posts, and text messages which flooded the internet following the September 11, 2001 terror attacks and are seemingly attributable to Russia, I recalled a similarly viral chain of disinformation from earlier in the 1990s. Lets call these fairly transparent conspiracies: ‘Bill Gates 666 disinformation’ (a good debunking can be found here).
The ideas of apocalypse and antichrist in former Soviet-bloc countries are deeply culturally ingrained concepts associated with millennial/centennial mythologies. This has synergy with the apocalyptic and popular eschatological prophecies of Nostradamus.
Did you know that the same people who advanced the Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion were also responsible for the near-simultaneous canonization of Seraphim of Sarov? According to Sergei Nilus and Konstantin Pobedonostsev – two conservative Orthodox figures closely connected to Nicholas II -supposedly the venerable Seraphim had predicted the death of Nicholas II by Jewish (e.g. ‘Bolshevik’) elements; painting him as a Christ-like martyr.
Immediately following the 9/11 attacks, several fake Nostradamus prophecies circulated on the internet claiming the 16th century seer had predicted the crisis. In addition to reflecting clear fabrications of Nostradamus prophecy, the 9/11 fakes also included apparent elements of Baba Vanga prophecy. Baba Vanga (d. 1996) was a Nostradamus-like Eastern European mystic who is “extremely popular in Russia”, and who according to Sputnik News, predicted the 2000 Kursk disaster, the 9/11 attacks, and even Vladimir Putin’s succession of Boris Yeltsin (Sputnik 2010). Continue reading “Faked False Prophecy: Clear Eastern European Influence on the 9/11 Hoax Prophecies”
I just presented on the attached paper (and a poster of my political model of Russian conspiracism) at the 13th International Conference on Cyber Warfare and Security (ICCWS) which was held at National Defense University in Washington DC. The paper is based on a 2017 analysis of Google ‘hit count estimates’ (HCEs) for 38 news sites and 38 top level domains (TLDs) (two separate investigations) in order to test my theory that Russia employs the concept of Nostradamus and similar ‘prophets’ in a way that is different from the ‘West’. HCEs are a ‘webometric‘ which can potentially be used for conducting quantitative social science research on the internet.
(We are allowed and encouraged by the publisher to post these to personal web pages following the conference. )
Here is the first paper I published in a peer-reviewed publication on the subject of Russian cyber warfare and active measures on September 11, 2001. The focus was on the linkage between the strange search engine results which saw Nostradamus become the top gaining search of all of 2001, and stemming from a series of online hoaxes. At this point, I have generally improved all aspects of this argument, although I have no concerns about the continued correctness of content in this article. My agreement with the publisher allows me to post it on my personal blog or website.
The early English-language promoters of Nostradamus (Orson Welles and Erika Cheetham) had strong Leftist-Marxist connections including ties to the Cambridge 5 spy ring. Nostradamus was the top search anomaly of Sept 11, 2001. Interest was driven by a surge in emails and text messages via the internet. This behavior is discussed in relation to known cyber threats from 2001. Similar spikes in Nostradamus searches (Google Trends) emanated from Poland (April 2010), Ukraine (March 2014), and in Hungary (August 2015). Nostradamus mirrors proven Russian disinformation operations, such as those that today implicate 9/11 as being an “inside job” by the US government, or that the CIA killed JFK, or that the CIA engineered the AIDS virus. Noting Nostradamus’ use by both the Allies and the Axis powers as a psychological warfare tool in World War 2, the case is made that it was the Russians carrying out an “information attack” on 9/11 that is consistent with Russian cyber warfare and active measures strategy; and that they may have used similar techniques elsewhere since 2001.
Russia has definitely engaged in disinformation around earthquakes and tectonic weapons including repurposing arguments from the early 1990s and weaponizing them against America in 2010. In 1992 and 1993, amidst suspicion/rumors that Russia had deployed such a weapon in Armenia in 1988 – which had been fostered by a supposed Radio Liberty report and rumors which had circulated since Summer 1991, an official Russian military spokesperson said of such claims: “Therefore we are being accused of developing a barbaric weapon for use against peaceful inhabitants, thus driving a wedge between the civilian population and the military.” This is a clear allegation of Information Warfare.