So far I note ...
Citations, per my bet with PPhil
in comments below: I would score it a win to me. The original bet was two out of three of Peter Dale Scott, Paul Thompson and Robin Ramsay. Of these, only Ramsay is mentioned, in a reasonably material discussion of his views. ("Little Atoms" said in the same comments that Peter Dale Scott appeared in the bibliography of the prepublication version he'd seen, but he isn't there - no reference in the bibliog, and the only reference in the index is to Paul Scott, author of the Raj Quartet, unrelated). I added Nafeez Ahmed as a "bonus ball", and his "London Bombings" book appears in the biblio but I don't understand why - the book isn't discussed and the only reference to Ahmed himself is that David Ray Griffin apparently got interested in conspiracy theory after reading a different book by Nafeez Ahmed. On the JFK and related assassinations literature, Aaro's main source is Gerald Posner, who cites Peter Dale Scott quite a lot and has debated him publicly on a number of occasions (they disagree on nearly everything), so I don't understand why Aaro didn't follow up the reference.
Other guesses from my review
:"Also inevitable is at least one reference to David Icke"
: or perhaps not. Not in the index or biblio - might be a throwaway line in the text, but if so I haven't found it yet. Surely an open goal missed
here Aaro!There's also surely at least a 50/50 chance that he'll libel Stephen Walt and John Mearsheimer.
: also, apparently not.Diana theories get in there, of course, as do lunar landing conspiracists,
: and how; 20 opages on Diana and 2 on "Apollo moon landings".Iran Contra will be tossed off in a couple of pages, Watergate in few more and the Gulf of Tonkin Incident most likely not mentioned at all
: if anything, I overestimated Aaro here.
Iran-Contra gets mentioned on one page, in the para:"Not countering Watergate, which was a rather pitiful botched conspiracy to cover up an attempt at political espionage
[and firebombing, and burglary - BB], the Iran-Contra affair of 1985-6 is the closest the US has come to a full-blown conspiracy. Here, senior members of the Reagan administration sought to thwart a congressional prohibition on financial support to anti-Communist Nicaraguan insurgents (the Contras) by procuring weapons and selling them to America's sworn enemy Iran. The entire business unravelled; there were two inquiries; and two National Security Council employees were found guilty of minor felonies, their convictions being overturned on appeal on the grounds that they had been promised immunity from prosecution through testifying to Congress"
Oliver North not mentioned by name at all. Watergate gets two mentions, one in the paragraph above and one in a sentence quoting someone as saying it wouldn't have happened if Robert Kennedy had lived.
The Gulf of Tonkin also gets two mentions. Weirdly, both are in contexts where it's more or less admitted that there was a real conspiracy here (although this is by no means proved and probably never will be given that the most important documents are still classified. On p8:
"An individual theory will seem less improbable if an entire history of similar cases can be cited. These can be as ancient as the Gunpowder Plot of 1605, and today may incldue references to Pearl Harbor, the Reichstag fire and the 1965 Gulf of Tonkin incident"
On p220 "Then she cites 1941 and Pearl Harbor [...] followed by the 1965 Gulf of Tonkin incident, in which President Lyndon Johnson used an alleged attack on a US destroyer as a pretext to begin the bombing of North Vietnam, thus providing much fodder for conspiracy theorists.
I said:Oliver Stone's film is likely to get treated as if it were the definitive summary of assassinology
: not entirely true, but close as.(and I bet he gets the official line wrong, repeating the Warren Commission's "lone nut" conclusion and ommitting the House Committee on Assassinations)
: he does. Fair enough if one thinks the HSCA got it wrong, but not to even mention it (except once in a quoted passage on an unrelated topic)?I suspect that on at least one occasion, our man will use as a punchline the ridiculousness of suspecting that the military and security infrastructure of a G7 country might have been co-opted by a single Masonic lodge (something which has definitely happened). The Freemasons! Controlling the secret police! Carrying out acts of domestic terrorism as a pretext for jailing their political enemies!
Weirdly, Freemasonry is mentioned on pages 20, 23, 25, 26, 34, 36, 37, 82, 199, 208, 209 and 215 (also on p280 which is not in the index), but Propaganda Due not at all. Brown, Dan is on pp 5, 187-8, 190, 205, 216-17, 302, but Allende and Pinochet none each, plus Patrice Lumumba, zero.
I'll get stuck in and read the thing asap. My hopes are not high. I peeked at the end, and it does all end up in having a go at "relativism" as the cause of it all; this is surely crazy - conspiracy theorists are, as I mentioned in comments before, the least relativist people in the world, as they are by definition specifically obsessed with the literal truth of one specific narrative account of history and the literal falsity of another.
Final note:Then in March 2003 American and British forces
[sic] invaded Iraq in what was to prove the most controversial and divisive foreign-policy decision for both countries of the post-Cold War era. There were huge protests, followed by a widespread belief that somehow the American and British people had been lied to. Many books have covered and will cover that territory, but one consequences was a flood of conspiracy theories covering almost every aspect of Western (here defined as American, British, Israeli, and, if you have less parochial tastes, Australian) foreign and counter-terrorist policy.
That's it. That's the sum fucking total of the discussion of Iraq, except in so far as it relates to the death of Dr David Kelly. The real conspiracy here is the conspiracy to separate me from £17.99 of my money for a book that doesn't discuss the single most relevant point that its author might have had to discuss. Fuck, I'm annoyed.