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Conspiracist influencers blame Jews for ISIS attack in Moscow

“So it was Israel lol,” antisemitic activist Lucas Gage wrote on X.

Crocus City Hall amphitheater in Russia, a day after March 22 terrorist attack, in which ISIS claimed responsibility, March 23, 2024. Credit: Governor of Moscow Oblast via Wikimedia Commons.
Crocus City Hall amphitheater in Russia, a day after March 22 terrorist attack, in which ISIS claimed responsibility, March 23, 2024. Credit: Governor of Moscow Oblast via Wikimedia Commons.

A new report from the Anti-Defamation League reveals the proliferation of online conspiracy theories accusing Jews of covertly masterminding the ISIS terrorist attack at the Crocus City Hall in Moscow on March 22, which left 143 dead and 95 missing.

Lucas Gage, Jake Shields, Alex Jones and Rizza Islam are some of the influencers who are quite popular, known to espouse antisemitism and who have engaged in the Moscow conspiracy theories,” Jessica Cohen, an ADL spokesperson, told JNS. “Not to mention other anonymous and antisemitic ‘influencer’ accounts, which have also helped amplify these narratives.”

Crocus Ciy Hall, Russia (Before March 2024 Attack)
Crocus City Hall in Russia in 2020. Credit: Press service of the Governor of the Moscow region via Wikimedia Commons.

Gage, editor and seller of a new edition of the 1873 antisemitic pamphlet The Conquest of the World by the Jews, wrote: “So it was Israel lol” on his X account, which sports more than 237,000 followers.

Shields, a mixed martial artist with more than 648,000 followers, wrote that “Israel is ISIS” and shared headlines suggesting that the Islamist terrorist group’s members had worked with the Israeli Mossad.

Jones, the longtime “New World Order” conspiracist who currently owes $1.5 billion to families of the victims of the 2012 shooting at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., pointed the finger at the CIA as responsible for controlling ISIS.

Islam suggested that ISIS stood for “Israeli Secret Intelligence Service.” He, too, said he believed that the CIA sponsored the attack. Jones and Islam have 2.2 million and almost 66,000 followers, respectively.

One screenshot of a white supremacist Telegram user featured in the report wrote “isis = cia = jews.” Another image shows an X user who shared a cartoon of an ISIS terrorist pulling off a mask to reveal the antisemitic “Happy Merchant” caricature.

“While there was once a time when such outlandish claims would have been confined to fringe spaces online, that’s certainly not the case anymore,” Cohen told JNS. “As with many antisemitic and conspiratorial narratives, this mainstreaming is leading to the increased normalization of this rhetoric.”

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