(Headline USA) When some of the world’s wealthiest and most influential figures gathered at the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting last year, sessions on climate change drew high-level discussions on topics such as carbon financing and sustainable food systems.
The annual event in the Swiss ski resort town of Davos, which opens Monday, has increasingly become a subject of alarm from a growing chorus of commentators who believe the forum involves a group of elites manipulating global events for their own benefit.
The WEF’s own published agenda, which couches its nefarious agenda in thinly veiled euphemisms, has been the source of much of that concern as it openly advocates a collectivist one-world government achieved through a “Great Reset” of the current political and economic orders.
Despite having itself coined many of the buzzwords associated with the conspiracies, the WEF now claims it is a victim of misinformation. But few in the public are having it following several years of globalist collusion on matters like coronavirus lockdowns; massive inflation; a war in Ukraine that has allowed wealthy weapons manufacturers to profit; and the blatant interference in the democratic political process for several nations, including the United States.
“This isn’t a conspiracy that is playing out on the extreme fringes,” said Alex Friedfeld, a researcher with the far-left Anti-Defamation League, a Jewish-based nonprofit that often tries to dox and censor critics of government overreach and intrusion, as well as smearing many with spurious claims of anti-Semitism, its go-to response.
“We’re seeing it on mainstream social media platforms being shared by regular Americans, Friedfeld said. “We were seeing it being spread by mainstream media figures right on their prime time news, on their nightly networks.”
He suggested that such criticism of efforts to establish a new-world order could result in stochastic terrorism that would put the lives of the Davoisie at risk.
“Creating all that kind of stuff can generate enemies that people believe are responsible for whatever bad thing is happening in the world,” Friedfeld said.
“Once that happens, when you believe that that things are happening in the world and a certain person or group of people is responsible for these attacks, all of a sudden, the idea of using violence to resist becomes more plausible.”
Indeed, some memes suggested that the public would not openly endorse the possibility of Russia nuking the summit, but would not entirely oppose it either.
Though it’s always unclear how much concrete action will emerge, the meeting is slated to take on pressing global issues from climate change and economic uncertainty to geopolitical instability and public health.
Hundreds of public sessions are planned, but the four-day conference is also known for secretive backroom meetings and deal-making by business leaders. This gap between what’s shown to the public and what happens behind closed doors helps make that makes the meeting a flashpoint for justifiable conspiracy theories.
“When we have very high levels of ambiguity, it’s very easy to fill in narratives,” said Kathleen Hall Jamieson, who is the director of the Annenberg Public Policy Center at the University of Pennsylvania, another leftist “think-tank” that is eager to dismiss valid suspicions as being a product of “misinformation.”
Theories about influential global leaders are not new, she said, but scrutiny of the forum and its chairman, Klaus Schwab, intensified in 2020 in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic.
That year, the theme of the annual meeting was “The Great Reset.” The initiative envisioned sweeping changes to how societies and economies would work to recover from the pandemic and build a more sustainable future.
Now, in increasingly mainstream corners of the internet and on conservative talk shows, “The Great Reset” has become shorthand for what skeptics say is a reorganization of society, using global uncertainty as a guise to take away rights.
Believers argue that measures including pandemic lockdowns and vaccine mandates are tools to consolidate power and undercut individual sovereignty.
At a rally staged on the grounds of an upstate New York church last fall, a photo of Schwab was displayed on the center of a large screen alongside other “villains” accused of threatening American values.
Participants discussed “The Great Reset,” among a host of other theories, as an assault on America’s foundations.
The phrase was used more than 60 times across all programs on Fox News in 2022, according to one tally generated by the Internet Archive’s TV news database. That’s up from 30 mentions in 2021 and about 20 in 2020. It was discussed most frequently on The Ingraham Angle and Tucker Carlson Tonight.
And in August, Infowars host Alex Jones released a book called The Great Reset: And The War For the World. It’s described as an analysis of “the global elite’s international conspiracy to enslave humanity and all life on the planet.”
As the World Economic Forum has become intertwined with this narrative, a steady stream of claims have plagued the organization—namely that it hosts wealthy executives who fly in on emissions-spewing corporate jets.
Stories last month circulated that Schwab publicly encouraged the decriminalization of sex between children and adults, drawing tens of thousands of shares on Twitter and Facebook.
Meanwhile, the popular claim that the forum wants people to replace meat with bugs is a reference to an article once published on the organization’s website but has continued to be openly embraced by powerful leaders affiliated with Davos, including billionaire Bill Gates.
Adapted from reporting by the Associated Press