On March 4 and March 5, 1995, Reverend Marion Gordon “Pat” Robertson sent separate letters to The New York Times defending his 1991 book, The New World Order, against charges of anti-Semitism. In both statements, Robertson placed particular emphasis on his book’s scholarship. In his March 4 statement, Robertson wrote: “The book ‘The New World Order,’ was carefully researched and contains seven single-spaced pages of bibliography from original historical sources.” On March 5, Robertson said:
There is nothing new about the observation that there is a connection between the world of high finance and the United States foreign policy establishment. In my book, I rely heavily on the pioneering work of Carroll Quigley, Bill Clinton’s professor and mentor at Georgetown. Mr. Quigley argued in “Tragedy and Hope” (1966) that “energetic left-wingers” exercised influence over United States foreign policy that was “ultimately the power of the international financial coterie.”
Robertson and his defenders are using Quigley as a smoke screen to divert attention from the much nastier works he also relies on. Two of them—World Revolution: The Plot Against Civilization and Secret Societies and Subversive Movements—are by Nesta H. Webster, an English historian of the 1920s who wrote several books on the French Revolution. The third, Secrets of the Federal Reserve: The London Connection, is by the American conservative writer Eustace Mullins.1 They supply the basis for Robertson’s three-tiered argument that 1) a group he calls the Bavarian Illuminati merged with European Jewish bankers to 2) finance the Bolshevik revolution and create the Federal Reserve system and 3) form, among other coteries, the Council on Foreign Relations. Robertson cites both books by Webster in his own book but does not allude to them in his letters to the Times. A look at them suggests why.
Webster’s World Revolution and Secret Societies both portray Jews as sinister, conspiratorial forces. Secret Societies includes chapter titles such as “The Jewish Cabalists” and “The Real Jewish Peril.” The appendix consists of “Jewish Evidence on the Talmud” and “The ‘Protocols’ of the Elders of Zion.”2
Both books are devoted to exposing a powerful conspiracy that began in the eighteenth century with the Bavarian occult group called the Illuminati and continued through the Bolshevik revolution. According to Webster, the Illuminati were founded by the Bavarian professor of canon law Adam Weishaupt in 1776. Both Webster and Robertson see Weishaupt as Satan’s apprentice. Webster states that Weishaupt was
indoctrinated into Egyptian occultism by a certain merchant of unknown origin from Jutland, named Kölmer, who was travelling about Europe during the year 1771 in search of adepts. Weishaupt…spent no less than five years thinking out a plan by which all these ideas could be reduced to a system…3
Robertson echoes Webster:
Weishaupt had been indoctrinated into Egyptian occultism in 1771 by a merchant of unknown origin named Kolmer, who had been seeking European converts. It was said that for five years Weishaupt formulated a plan by which all occultic systems…
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