David Icke

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David Icke
photograph
Icke in 2008
Born David Vaughan Icke
(1952-04-29) 29 April 1952 (age 62)
Leicester, Leicestershire, England, UK
Residence Ryde, Isle of Wight
Occupation Writer and speaker
Known for Football, television sports, books on global politics
Political party
Green Party of England and Wales (1990–1991)
Green Party (1988–1990)

David Vaughan Icke (/k/; IKE, born 29 April 1952) is an English writer, public speaker and former professional footballer. He promotes conspiracy theories about global politics and has written extensively about them.

Icke was a BBC television sports presenter and spokesman for the Green Party, when in 1990 a psychic told him that he was a healer who had been placed on Earth for a purpose, and that the spirit world was going to pass messages to him. In March 1991 he held a press conference to announce that he was a "Son of the Godhead" – a phrase he said later the media had misunderstood. He said that a subsequent appearance on BBC's Wogan changed his life, turning him from a respected household name into someone who was laughed at whenever he appeared in public.[1]

He nevertheless continued to develop his ideas, and in four books published over seven years – The Robots' Rebellion (1994), And the Truth Shall Set You Free (1995), The Biggest Secret (1999), and Children of the Matrix (2001) – set out a worldview that combined New-Age spiritualism with a denunciation of totalitarian trends in the modern world. At the heart of his theories lies the idea that a secret group of reptilian humanoids called the Babylonian Brotherhood controls humanity, and that many prominent figures are reptilian.[2]

Michael Barkun has described Icke's position as "New Age conspiracism," writing that he is the most fluent of the conspiracist genre. Richard Kahn and Tyson Lewis argue that the reptilian hypothesis may simply be Swiftian satire, a way of giving ordinary people a narrative with which to question what they see around them.[3]

Biography[edit]

Early life and education[edit]

Icke was born in Leicester General Hospital to Beric Vaughan Icke and Barbara J. Icke, née Cooke, who were married in Leicester in 1951. Icke was the middle child; there was a brother seven years older, and another seven years younger. Beric had wanted to be a doctor, but his family had no money, so he joined the Royal Air Force instead. He was awarded a British Empire Medal for gallantry in May 1943 after helping to save the crew of an aircraft that had crashed into the Chipping Warden air base in Oxfordshire. Along with a Squadron Leader, he ran into the burning aircraft, without protective clothing, and saved the life of a crew member who was trapped inside.[4]

After the war, Beric became a clerk in the Gents' clock factory, and the family lived in a terraced house on Lead Street, near Wharf Street in the centre of Leicester. When Icke was three, they moved to a housing estate known as the Goodwood, a recently constructed council estate. "To say we were skint," he wrote in 1993, "is like saying it is a little chilly at the North Pole." He remembers having to hide under a window or chair when the council man came to collect the rent. After knocking, the rent man would walk round the house peering through the windows to see whether anyone was at home. His mother never explained that it was about the rent; she just told him to hide, and Icke writes that he still gets a fright whenever he hears a knock on the door.[5]

He was always a loner, spending hours playing with toy steam trains, and preferring to cross the street rather than speak to anyone. He attended Whitehall Infant School, then Whitehall Junior School, where he spent most of his time feeling nervous and shy, often to the point of almost fainting during the morning assembly and having to leave before he passed out. The family doctor suggested a referral to a child psychologist, but his father put his foot down.[6]

Football and first marriage[edit]

David Icke in goal.jpg
Icke (right) in goal in the early 1970s, for Hereford United
Personal information
Playing position Goalkeeper
Youth career
1967–1971 Coventry City
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1971–1973 Hereford United[7] 37 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
† Appearances (Goals).

When he was nine, he was chosen for the junior school's football team. It was the first time he had succeeded, and he came to see football as his way out of poverty. He played in goal, which he writes suited the loner in him and gave him a sense of living on the edge between hero and villain.[6]

After failing his 11-plus exam in 1963, he was sent to the city's Crown Hills Secondary Modern School, rather than the local grammar school, where he was given a trial for the Leicester Boys Under-Fourteen team. He decided to leave school at 15 after being talent-spotted by Coventry City, who signed him up in 1967 as their youth team's goalkeeper. He also played for Oxford United's reserve team and Northampton Town, on loan from Coventry. Rheumatoid arthritis in his left knee, which later spread to the right knee, ankles, elbows, wrists and hands, stopped him from making a career out of football. Despite often being in agony during training, he managed to play part-time for Hereford United – including in the first team when they were in the Fourth Division of the English Football League, and when they were promoted to Division Three – before the pain in his joints forced him to retire in 1973 at the age of 21.[8]

He met his first wife, Linda Atherton, in May 1971 at a dance at the Chesford Grange Hotel near Leamington Spa; she was working as a van driver for a garage in Leamington. Shortly after they met, Icke had another one of the huge rows he had started having with his father – always a domineering man, his father was upset that Icke's arthritis was interfering with his football career – so he packed his bags and left home. He moved into a tiny bedsit and worked in a local travel agency during the day, travelling to Hereford twice a week in the evenings to play football.[9]

He and Linda were married on 30 September that year, four months after they met. A daughter was born in March 1975, followed by a son in December 1981 and another in November 1992. Though the couple divorced in 2001, they remain good friends; she runs his publishing arm, David Icke Books, and produces his DVDs.[9]

Sports presenter[edit]

The loss of his position with Hereford meant that he and his wife had to sell their home, and for several weeks they lived apart, each moving in with their parents, but he found a job in 1973 as a reporter with the weekly Leicester Advertiser, through a contact who was a sports editor at the Daily Mail. He moved on to the Leicester News Agency, and through them did some programmes for BBC Radio Leicester, then worked his way up through the Loughborough Monitor, the Leicester Mercury, and BRMB Radio in Birmingham.[10]

photograph
Icke (top right) with the BBC's first Breakfast Time team, c. 1983. Clockwise from top left: Francis Wilson, Debbie Rix, David Icke, Nick Ross, Selina Scott, Frank Bough

He worked for two months in Saudi Arabia in 1975, helping them run their national football team; it was intended to be a longer-term position, but he missed his wife and new daughter so much that he decided not to return after his first holiday back to the UK. He got his job back at BRMB, then applied successfully to work for Midlands Today at the BBC's Pebble Mill Studios in Birmingham, and in 1981 moved on to become a sports presenter for the BBC's national programme, Newsnight. The following year he achieved his ambition when offered a job co-hosting Grandstand, at the time the BBC's flagship national sports programme.[11]

Icke moved in 1982 to Ryde on the Isle of Wight, somewhere he had always wanted to live. He appeared on the first edition of British television's first national breakfast show, the BBC's Breakfast Time, on 17 January 1983, presenting the sports news for them until 1985. He also published his first book that year, It's a Tough Game, Son!, about how to break into football.[12]

He continued to work for BBC Sport until 1990, often on Grandstand and snooker programmes, and also at the 1988 Summer Olympics, but despite his professional success – he was by then a household name – a career in television began to lose its appeal for him. He wrote in Tales from the Time Loop (2003) that he was beginning to find television workers insincere, shallow, and vicious, with rare exceptions.[13] His contract with the BBC was terminated in August 1990 owing to a political row, when he refused to pay his Community Charge (better known as the poll tax), a tax introduced that year in England by Margaret Thatcher. He did end up paying it, but his announcement that he was willing to go to jail rather than pay prompted the BBC, by charter an impartial public-service broadcaster, to distance itself from him.[14]

Green Party, meeting with psychic healer[edit]

photograph
Icke said he had a mystical experience near this pre-Inca burial site in Peru.

Icke had begun to flirt with fringe medicine and New Age philosophies in the 1980s in an effort to find relief from his arthritis, and this encouraged his interest in Green politics.[15] He wrote his second book in 1989, It Doesn't Have To Be Like This, an outline of his views on the environment, and was involved with the Green Party from 1988 to 1991, soon becoming one of their four Principal Speakers, a position the party created in lieu of a leader. The Observer called him "the Greens' Tony Blair."[16] He was regularly present at high-profile events. He was invited in 1989 to debate animal rights during a televised debate at the Royal Institute of Great Britain, alongside Tom Regan, Mary Warnock and Germaine Greer, and in September 1990 his name appeared on advertisements for a children's charity along with Audrey Hepburn, Woody Allen and other celebrities.[17]

Despite his success, he wrote that 1989 was a time of considerable personal despair for him, and it was during this period that he said he began to feel a presence around him.[18] In March 1990, while standing in a newsagent's, he felt that a magnetic force was pulling his feet to the ground, and said he heard a voice tell him to look at a particular section of books. One of the books was by Betty Shine, a psychic healer in Brighton. He decided to visit her to ask for help with his arthritis.[19] Shine told him during their third meeting that she had a message for him from the spirit world. She said that he had been sent to heal the Earth, and would become famous but would face opposition. The spirit world was going to pass ideas to him, which he would speak about to others, sometimes not understanding the words himself. She said he would write five books in three years; that in 20 years there would be a different kind of flying machine, where we could go wherever we wanted and time would have no meaning; and there would be earthquakes in unusual places, because the inner earth was being destabilised by having oil taken from the seabed.[20]

In February 1991 Icke visited the pre-Inca Sillustani burial ground near Puno, Peru, and while there said he felt drawn to a large mound of earth, at the top of which lay a circle of waist-high stones. As he stood in the circle, he said he had two thoughts: that people will be talking about this in 100 years, and it would be over when he felt the rain. He said his body started shaking as though plugged into an electrical socket and new ideas began to pour into him. Then it started raining and the experience ended. He described it later as the "kundalini" – a term from Indian yoga – activating his chakras, or energy centres, triggering a higher level of consciousness.[21] He returned to England and began to write a book about the experience. At a Green Party conference on 20 March 1991, he resigned from the party, telling them he was about to be at the centre of "tremendous and increasing controversy," and winning a standing ovation from them after the announcement.[22]

Turquoise period[edit]

What followed was what Icke calls his "turquoise period." He writes that he had been channelling for some time, and had received a message through automatic writing that he was a "Son of the Godhead," interpreting "Godhead" as the "Infinite Mind."[23] He now began to wear only turquoise, which he saw as a conduit for positive energy. He had met Deborah Shaw, an English psychic living in Calgary, Alberta, in August 1990, and after he returned from Peru, they began a relationship, which led to the birth of a daughter in December 1991. At one point, Shaw moved in with him and his wife. Shaw changed her name to Mari Shawsun, while Icke's wife became known as Michaela, which she said was an aspect of the Archangel Michael. They became known in the press as the "turquoise triangle."[16]

In March 1991, a week after he resigned from the Green Party – and shortly after his father died – the three of them held a press conference to announce that Icke was a son of the Godhead. He said the world would end in 1997, preceded by a number of disasters, including a severe hurricane around the Gulf of Mexico and New Orleans, eruptions in Cuba, disruption in China, a hurricane in Derry, and an earthquake on the Isle of Arran. Los Angeles would become an island, New Zealand would disappear, and the cliffs of Kent would be under water by Christmas. He told reporters the information was being given to them by voices and automatic writing.[24]

He wrote in 1993 that he had felt out of control during the press conference. He heard his voice predict the end of the world, and was appalled. "I was speaking the words, but all the time I could hear the voice of the brakes in the background saying, 'David, what the hell are you saying?'" His predictions were splashed all over the next day's front pages, to his great dismay.[25]

Terry Wogan interview[edit]

photograph
Icke is greeted by Terry Wogan on 29 April 1991.[26]

The headlines attracted an invitation to appear on Terry Wogan's BBC primetime show, Wogan, on 29 April 1991. When asked if he was claiming to be the son of God, he did not disagree, and amid laughter from the studio audience, he surmised that natural disasters would occur as the earth dispersed of accumulated negative energy.

When you survey the world today ... when a child dies in this world of preventable disease every two seconds, when the economic system of this world must destroy the Earth simply for that system to survive; when you see all the wars, and when you see all the pain, and when you see all the suffering, is it a force of love and wisdom and tolerance that is in control of this planet?[27]

The interview proved devastating for him. The BBC was criticised for allowing it to go ahead, Des Christy in The Guardian calling it a "media crucifixion."[28] Wogan interviewed Icke again in 2006, acknowledging that his comments during the first interview had been "a bit sharp." Icke disappeared from public life for a time, unable to walk down the street without people mocking him. His children were followed to school by journalists and ridiculed by schoolmates, and his wife would open the back door to get the washing in only to find a camera crew filming her.[29] He told Jon Ronson in 2001:

One of my very greatest fears as a child was being ridiculed in public. And there it was coming true. As a television presenter, I'd been respected. People come up to you in the street and shake your hand and talk to you in a respectful way. And suddenly, overnight, this was transformed into "Icke's a nutter." I couldn't walk down any street in Britain without being laughed at. It was a nightmare. My children were devastated because their dad was a figure of ridicule.[26]

Writing and lecturing[edit]

Icke said the interview had been the making of him in the end, that the laughter had set him free. He wrote that every bridge back to his past was ablaze, giving him the courage to develop his ideas without caring what anyone thought of him.[30] His book, Truth Vibrations, was published in May 1991, and he continued to write, turning himself into a prolific and popular author and speaker, and setting up his own publisher, Bridge of Love Publications, later called David Icke Books.[31] He met his second wife, Pamela Leigh Richards, in Jamaica in 1997. He and Linda Atherton divorced in 2001; he married Pamela the same year and the couple separated in 2008. He remains friends with his first wife, and she is involved in the management of his publishing business.[32]

Lewis and Kahn write that Icke has produced a consolidation of all conspiracy theories into one project with unlimited explanatory power, his work cutting across class lines and political divisions.[33] By 2006 he had lectured in 25 countries, his lectures were attracting audiences of several thousand, his books had been translated into eight languages, and his website was getting 600,000 hits a week. The Biggest Secret was reprinted six times between 1999 and 2006, and Alice in Wonderland and the World Trade Center Disaster (2002) became a top-five seller in South Africa.[31]

He has become known in particular for his lengthy lectures, sometimes speaking for up to nine hours, then selling DVDs of the talks produced by Linda Atherton. In February 2008 he addressed the Oxford Union,[34] the University of Oxford's debating society. His book tour for Human Race Get Off Your Knees: The Lion Sleeps No More (2010) encompassed lectures in Australia, Croatia, the Netherlands and the United States, and ended in October 2012 with a talk at London's Wembley Arena.

He stood for parliament in the UK in July 2008 as "Big Brother—The Big Picture" in the Haltemprice and Howden by-election, coming 12th with 110 votes and losing his deposit. He explained that he stood because, "if we don't face this now we are going to have some serious explaining to do when we are asked by our children and grandchildren what we were doing when the global fascist state was installed. 'I was watching EastEnders, dear' will not be good enough."[35]

Key ideas[edit]

Icke combines discussion about the universe and consciousness with conspiracy theories about public figures being satanic paedophiles, and how apparently unconnected events are really attempts to control humanity. He argued in The Biggest Secret that human beings originated in a breeding program run by a race of reptilians called Anunnaki from the Draco constellation, and that what we call reality is just a holographic experience; the only reality is the realm of the Absolute. He believes in a collective consciousness that has intentionality, in reincarnation, in other possible worlds that exist alongside ours on other frequencies, and in acquired characteristics, arguing that our experiences change our DNA by downloading new information and overwriting the software. We are also able to attract experiences to ourselves by means of good and bad thoughts.[36]

Global Elite[edit]

Icke argues that humanity was created by a network of secret societies run by an ancient race of interbreeding bloodlines from the Middle and Near East, originally extraterrestrial. Icke calls them the "Babylonian Brotherhood." The Brotherhood is mostly male. Their children are raised from an early age to understand the mission; those who fail to understand it are pushed aside. The spread of the reptilian bloodline encompasses what Norman Simms calls an "odd and ill-matched" group of people, extending to 43 American presidents, three British and two Canadian prime ministers, various Sumerian kings and Egyptian pharaohs, and a small number of celebrities including Bob Hope. Key Brotherhood bloodlines are the Rockefellers, the Rothschilds, various European royal and aristocratic families, the establishment families of the Eastern United States, and the British House of Windsor. Icke identified the Queen Mother in 2001 as "seriously reptilian."[37]

The Illuminati, Round Table, Council on Foreign Relations, Chatham House, the Trilateral Commission, the Bilderberg Group, the International Monetary Fund and the United Nations, are all Brotherhood created and controlled, as are the media, military, CIA, Mossad, science, religion and the Internet, with witting or unwitting support from the London School of Economics.[38] At the apex of the Brotherhood stands the "Global Elite," identified throughout history as the Illuminati, and at the top of the Global Elite stand the "Prison Wardens." The goal of the Brotherhood – their "Great Work of Ages" – is world domination and a micro-chipped population.[37]

Reptoid hypothesis[edit]

Icke introduced the reptoid hypothesis in The Biggest Secret (1999), which identified the Brotherhood as descendants of reptilians from the constellation Draco, who walk on two legs and appear human, and who live in tunnels and caverns inside the earth. He argues that the reptilians are the race of gods known as the Anunnaki in the Babylonian creation myth, Enûma Eliš.[39] According to Barkun, Icke's idea of "inner-earth reptilians" is not new, though he has done more than most to expand it.[40]

drawing
The Draco constellation from Uranographia by Johannes Hevelius, 1690. Icke's "reptoid hypothesis" posits that humanity is ruled by descendants of reptilians from Draco.[41]

Lewis and Kahn write that Icke has taken his "ancient astronaut" narrative from the Israeli-American writer, Zecharia Sitchin, who argued – for example in Divine Encounters (1995) – that the Anunnaki had come to Earth for its precious metals. Icke argues that they came specifically for "monatomic gold," a mineral he says can increase the carrying capacity of the nervous system ten thousandfold. After ingesting it, the reptilians can process vast amounts of information, speed up trans-dimensional travel, and shapeshift from reptilian to human form.[42] They use human fear, guilt, and aggression as energy. "Thus we have the encouragement of wars," he wrote in 1999, "human genocide, the mass slaughter of animals, sexual perversions which create highly charged negative energy, and black magic ritual and sacrifice which takes place on a scale that will stagger those who have not studied the subject."[43] Lewis and Kahn argue that Icke is using allegory to depict the alien, and alienating, nature of global capitalism.[44]

Icke writes that the Anunnaki have crossbred with human beings, the breeding lines chosen for political reasons, arguing that they are the Watchers, the fallen angels, or "Grigori," who mated with human women in the Biblical apocrypha. Their first reptilian-human hybrid, possibly Adam, was created 200,000–300,000 years ago. There was a second breeding program 30,000 years ago, and a third 7,000 years ago. It is the half-bloods of the third breeding programme who today control the world, more Anunnaki than human, he writes. They have a powerful, hypnotic stare, the origin of the phrase to "give someone the evil eye," and their hybrid DNA allows them to shapeshift when they consume human blood.[45]

In Children of the Matrix (2001), he added that the Anunnaki bred with another extraterrestrial race called the "Nordics," who had blond hair and blue eyes, to produce a race of human slave masters, the Aryans. The Aryans retain many reptilian traits, including cold-blooded attitudes, a desire for top-down control, and an obsession with ritual, lending them a tendency toward fascism, rationalism and racism. Lewis and Kahn write that, with the Nordic hypothesis, Icke is mirroring standard claims by the far right that the Aryan bloodline has ruled the Earth throughout history.[46]

Dimensions[edit]

The reptilians not only come from another planet, but are also from another dimension, the lower level of the Fourth Dimension, the one nearest the physical world. Icke writes that the Universe consists of an infinite number of frequencies or dimensions that share the same space, just like television and radio frequencies. Some people can tune their consciousness to other wavelengths, which is what psychic power consists of, and it is from one of these other dimensions that the Anunnaki are controlling this world – although just as fourth-dimensional reptilians control us, they are controlled in turn by a fifth dimension. The lower level of the fourth dimension is what others call the "lower astral dimension." Icke argued that it is where demons live, the entities Satanists summon during their rituals. They are, in fact, summoning the reptilians.[47] Barkun argues that the introduction of different dimensions allows Icke to skip awkward questions about which part of the universe the reptilians come from, and how they got here.[40]

Problem-reaction-solution[edit]

In Tales From The Time Loop (2003), Icke argues that most organised religions, especially Judaism, Christianity and Islam, are Illuminati creations designed to divide and conquer the human race through endless conflicts, as are racial, ethnic and sexual divisions. He cites the Oklahoma City bombing and 9/11 as examples of events organised by the Global Elite.[48] The incidents allow the Elite to respond in whatever way they intended to act in the first place, a concept Icke calls "order out of chaos," or "problem-reaction-solution." He writes that there are few, if any, public events that are not engineered, or at least used, by the Brotherhood:[16]

drawing
Image by Neil Hague from Icke's Infinite Love is the Only Truth (2005), showing Queen Elizabeth II, George W. Bush and Tony Blair as "Red Dresses," the highest level of the Brotherhood.

You want to introduce something you know the people won't like ... So you first create a PROBLEM, a rising crime rate, more violence, a terrorist bomb ... You make sure someone else is blamed for this problem ... So you create a "patsy," as they call them in America, a Timothy McVeigh or a Lee Harvey Oswald ... This brings us to stage two, the REACTION from the people – "This can't go on; what are THEY going to do about it?" ... This allows THEM to then openly offer the SOLUTION to the problems they have created ..."[49]

Red Dresses[edit]

In Infinite Love is the Only Truth (2005), Icke introduces the idea of "reptilian software." He says that there are three kinds of people. The highest level of the Brotherhood are the "Red Dresses." These are "software people," elsewhere called "reptilian software," or "constructs of mind." They lack consciousness and free will, and their human bodies are holographic veils.[50]

A second group, the so-called "sheeple" – the vast majority of humanity – have what Icke calls "back seat consciousness." They are conscious, but they do whatever they are told and are the main source of energy for the Brotherhood. They include the "repeaters," the people in positions of influence who simply repeat what other people have told them. Doctors repeat what they are told in medical school and by drug companies, teachers repeat what they learned at teacher training college, and journalists are the greatest repeaters of all. The third group, by far the smallest, are those who see through the illusion; they are usually dubbed dangerous or mad. The "Red Dress" genetic lines keep obsessively interbreeding to make sure their bloodlines are not weakened by the second or third levels of consciousness, because consciousness can rewrite the software.[50]

Moon Matrix[edit]

The Moon Matrix is introduced in Human Race Get Off Your Knees: The Lion Sleeps No More (2010), in which he writes that the Earth and the collective human mind are manipulated from the Moon, a spacecraft and inter-dimensional portal controlled by the reptilians. The Moon Matrix is a broadcast from that spacecraft to the "human body-computer," specifically to the left hemisphere of the brain, which gives us our sense of reality. He writes: "We are living in a dreamworld within a dreamworld – a Matrix within the virtual-reality universe – and it is being broadcast from the Moon." Unless people force themselves to become fully conscious, their minds are the Moon's mind, an idea further explored in his Remember Who You Are: Remember 'Where' You Are and Where You 'Come' From (2012).[51]

Reception[edit]

Protests[edit]

In The Robots' Rebellion (1994), Icke introduced the idea that the Global Elite's plan for world domination was laid out in The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, a hoax published in Russia in 1903, which supposedly presented a plan by the Jewish people to take over the world.[52] According to Mark Honigsbaum, Icke refers to it 25 times in the Robot's Rebellion, calling it the "Illuminati protocols."[53]

cartoon
In his 2001 documentary about Icke, Jon Ronson cited this cartoon, "Rothschild" (1898), by Charles Léandre, arguing that Jews have long been depicted as lizard-like creatures out to control the world.[54]

The Protocols portrays the Jewish people as "cackling villains from a Saturday matinee," as Jon Ronson put it in his documentary about Icke, David Icke, the Lizards and the Jews (2001).[52] It was published in English in 1920 by The Dearborn Independent, Henry Ford's newspaper, becoming mixed up with conspiracy theories about anti-Christian Illuminati, international financiers, and the Rothschilds, a Jewish banking dynasty. After it was exposed that year as a hoax by The Times of London, Michael Barkun writes that it disappeared from mainstream discourse until interest in it was renewed by the American far right in the 1950s.[52] Barkun argues that Icke's reference to it is the first of a number of instances of his moving dangerously close to antisemitism.[55]

Icke's use of the Protocols was greeted with dismay by the Green Party's executive. They had allowed him to address the party's annual conference in 1992, despite the controversy over his interview on the Wogan show, but in September 1994 decided to deny him a platform.[56] Icke wrote to The Guardian denying that The Robots' Rebellion was antisemitic, and rejecting racism, sexism and prejudice of any kind, but in the same letter insisted that whoever wrote the Protocols "knew the game plan" for the 20th century.[57] Barkun argues that Icke was trying to have it both ways, offended by the allegation of antisemitism while "hinting at the dark activities of Jewish elites."[58]

Alick Bartholomew of Gateway, Icke's former publisher, said that an early draft of And the Truth Shall Set You Free (1995) contained material questioning the Holocaust, and that Icke was dropped because of it.[53] Sam Taylor wrote in The Observer in 1997 that, having read the material, he did not believe it was antisemitic, but argued that Icke was "tapping into a seriously paranoid, aggressive strain in U.S. society."[59] Louis Theroux cautioned in 2001 that it might not only be unfair to Icke to allege that he is associating Jews with the Global Elite, but it also lends a seriousness to ideas that would otherwise not deserve it.[60] Icke said it was "friggin' nonsense" that his reptiles represented Jews. "There is a tribe of people interbreeding," he told Jon Ronson in 2001, "which do not, do not, relate to any Earth race ... This is not a Jewish plot. This is not a plot on the world by Jewish people".[61]

Icke was briefly detained by immigration officials when he entered Canada in 2000, after his name was added to a watch list because of complaints from the Canadian Jewish Congress.[62] His books were removed from Indigo Books, a Canadian chain, and several stops on his speaking tour were cancelled, as was a lecture in October 2000 at Blackheath Concert Halls in London, for the same reason.[63] Human rights lawyer Richard Warman, working at the time for the Canadian Green Party, took credit for much of this in Jon Ronson's documentary about Icke, which catalogued some of the cancelled appearances.[64]

Academic views[edit]

Michael Barkun sees Icke as a professional conspiracy theorist of a variety similar to that of conservative radio host Alex Jones, and considers Icke to be the most fluent of the genre.[65][not in citation given] He calls Icke's work "improvisational millennialism" for its end-of-history scenario involving a final battle between good and evil. Because everything is connected in the conspiracist world view, Barkun writes, every source can be mined for links. The greater the stigma attached to an idea, the more attractive it becomes, and the vehemence with which the mainstream rejects an idea is almost a measure of its validity. For Icke, Barkun argues, the widespread ridiculing of the lizard theory is a guarantee that there's something to it.[66]

Barkun sees Icke's behaviour as actively trying to cultivate the far right. In 1996, Icke spoke to a conference in Reno, Nevada, alongside opponents of the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act – which mandates background checks on people who buy guns in the United States – including Kirk Lyons, a white nationalist lawyer who has represented the Ku Klux Klan.[40]

Barkun argues that the relationship between Icke, the militias, and the Christian Patriots is complex because of the New Age baggage Icke brings with him, and he stresses that Icke is not actually a member of any of these groups, but he has nevertheless absorbed the world view of the radical right virtually intact. "There is no fuller explication of its beliefs about ruling elites than Icke's," he writes.[67] Icke regards Christian patriots as the only Americans who understand the truth about the New World Order, but he also told a Christian patriot group: "I don't know which I dislike more, the world controlled by the Brotherhood, or the one you want to replace it with."[68]

Tyson Lewis and Richard Kahn see Icke differently, more as a spiritual philosopher, arguing that it's not clear he believes in the reptilians himself. They write that there is an almost obsessive-compulsive element to his writing, which includes anything he can find to support a narrative that connects ancient Sumer to modern America, in a way that "defies the laws of academic gravity," and which they say offers unlimited explanatory power. They argue that the lizards may be allegorical, a Swiftian satire intended to alert people to the emergence of a global fascist state. In Children of the Matrix, Icke writes that, if the reptilians did not exist, we would have to invent them. "In fact," he says, "we probably have. They are other levels of ourselves putting ourselves in our face."[69] Lewis and Kahn make use of Douglas Kellner's distinction in Media Spectacle (1995) between a reactionary clinical paranoia – a mindset dissociated from reality – and a progressive, critical paranoia that confronts power. They argue that Icke displays elements of both, writing that what they call his "postmodern metanarrative" may be a way of giving ordinary people a narrative structure within which to question what they see around them.[70]

In popular fiction[edit]

Icke's ideas have inspired, among other things, Scottish comic book writer Mark Millar's creation of the Chitauri, a fictional race of alien shapeshifters that appear in The Ultimates comic book series and the 2012 film The Avengers.[71]

Works[edit]

Books
Videos

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ For the encounter with the psychic, see Barkun 2003, p. 103.
    • For his appearance on the Terry Wogan show, see Ronson (Channel 4) 2001, begins 5:50 mins.
    • For "Son of the Godhead," see Icke, In the Light of Experience, pp. 190–194.
    • That it changed his life, also see Channel Five 2006, from 02:20 mins.
    • For another 1991 interview in which he says he is a son of the Godhead, see Britton, accessed 1 June 2011.
  2. ^ For mention of those four books, and "New Age conspiracism," see Barkun 2003, p. 103.
  3. ^ Barkun 2003, pp. 71–72, 98ff; for "New Age conspiracism," see p. 163.
  4. ^ For his background and brothers, see Icke, In the Light of Experience, p. 28.
    • For his father's medal, see "1479714 Leading Aircraftman Beric Vaughan Icke, Royal Air Force", RAF website, taken from the London Gazette, 14 May 1943. The citation reads:

      "One night in March, 1943, an aircraft crashed on a Royal Air Force station and immediately burst into flames. Squadron Leader Moore (the duty medical officer) saw the accident and, accompanied by Leading Aircraftman Icke, a medical orderly, proceeded to the scene. Squadron Leader Moore directed the removal of the rear gunner, who was dazed and sitting amongst the burning wreckage, to a place of safety. The aircraft was now enveloped in flames and ammunition was exploding. Nevertheless, despite the intense heat and the danger from exploding oxygen bottles this officer and airman entered the burning wreckage in an attempt to rescue another member of the crew who was pinned down. Without any protective clothing they lifted aside the burning wreckage and, with great difficulty, succeeded in extricating the injured man. Squadron Leader Moore rendered first aid to the rescued man. Squadron Leader Moore sustained burns to his chest and hands in carrying out the operation. This officer and airman both displayed courage and devotion to duty in keeping with the highest traditions of the Royal Air Force.

      "Acting Squadron Leader Frederick Thomas Moore, B.S., F.R.C.S., L.R.C.P. (23417), Reserve of Air Force Officers was awarded the MBE for his part in this action."

  5. ^ Icke, In the Light of Experience, pp. 29, 33.
    • Also see Icke, Tales from the Time Loop, pp. 2–3.
  6. ^ a b Icke, In the Light of Experience, pp. 36, 38.
    • Also see Icke, Tales from the Time Loop, pp. 2–3.
  7. ^ David Icke Coventry City
  8. ^ Icke, In the Light of Experience, pp. 44, 46, 54, 58, 60–70.
  9. ^ a b Icke, In the Light of Experience, pp. 61–66, 82, 96.
  10. ^ Icke, In the Light of Experience, pp. 72, 75–83.
  11. ^ Icke, In the Light of Experience, pp. 83–95.
  12. ^ David Icke filmography, British Film Institute, accessed 14 November 2009.
  13. ^ Icke, Tales from the Time Loop p. 4.
  14. ^ Guardian, 14 November 1990.
    • For the BBC not renewing the contract in August 1990, see Kennedy (Guardian) 1991.
  15. ^ Grossman (Institute for Social Ecology) 1991.
  16. ^ a b c Taylor 1997.
    • For the daughter, see Icke, In the Light of Experience, pp. 221–223.
  17. ^ For the animal rights debate, see Icke 1989, accessed 12 December 2010.
    • For the ads, see Weekend Guardian, 22–23 September 1990.
  18. ^ Icke Days of Decision, p. 19.
  19. ^ "The 10 worst decisions in the history of sport". Observer Sport Monthly (London). 12 January 2003. 
  20. ^ "David Icke Biography 1" (archived).
  21. ^ Icke, Tales from the Time Loop, pp. 12–13, 16.
    • Also see Barkun 2003, p. 103.
  22. ^ Kennedy (Guardian) 1991.
  23. ^ For "Son of the Godhead," see Icke, In the Light of Experience, p. 190, and for the "Infinite Mind," see p. 208.
  24. ^ Ezard (Guardian) 1991.
    • For the death of his father, see Icke, In the Light of Experience, p. 188; for the press conference, see p. 193.
  25. ^ Icke, In the Light of Experience, p. 193.
  26. ^ a b Ronson (Guardian) 2001, part 1, part 2.
  27. ^ David Icke on Wogan, 29 April 1991, in "Still crazy after all these years", at 4 mins, 11 secs, accessed 30 March 2011.
  28. ^ Christy 1991.
  29. ^ Channel Five 2006, from 02:20 mins.
  30. ^ Icke, Tales from the Time Loop, pp. 14, 17; Channel Five 2006.
  31. ^ a b For the details of his lecture tours, website numbers, countries lectured in, see Channel Five 2006.
  32. ^ Clarke (Daily Mail) 2012.
  33. ^ Lewis and Kahn 2010, p. 75.
  34. ^ Paul Evans "Interview: David Icke", New Statesman, 3 March 2008
  35. ^ VoteWise, accessed 12 December 2010.
  36. ^ For law of attraction/magnetic energy and satanic involvement, see Icke, Children of the Matrix, p. 291ff, and The Biggest Secret, pp. 30–40.
    • For other possible worlds/frequencies, see Icke, The Biggest Secret, pp. 26–27.
    • For changing DNA, see Icke, Infinite Love is the Only Truth, pp. 78–84, 148.
  37. ^ a b Barkun 2003, p. 104.
  38. ^ Icke, Children of the Matrix, p. 339.
  39. ^ Icke, The Biggest Secret, pp. 19–25.
  40. ^ a b c Barkun 2003, p. 106.
  41. ^ Barkun 2003, p. 105.
  42. ^ Lewis and Kahn 2010, p. 81.
  43. ^ Icke, The Biggest Secret, pp. 30–38, 40.
  44. ^ Lewis and Kahn 2010, p. 82.
  45. ^ Icke, The Biggest Secret, pp. 40–45.
  46. ^ Icke, Children of the Matrix, pp. 19, 79, 251.
  47. ^ Icke, The Biggest Secret, pp. 26–27.
  48. ^ Kay 2011, pp. 72, 179–180.
    • For Icke's views, see Alice in Wonderland and the World Trade Center Disaster, 2002, e.g. pp. 154, 205.
  49. ^ Icke, News for the Soul, accessed 12 December 2010.
  50. ^ a b Icke, Infinite Love is the Only Truth, pp. 78–84, 148; also see Channel Five 2006.
  51. ^ Icke, Human Race Get Off Your Knees, 2010, pp. 618, 627, 632.
  52. ^ a b c Barkun 2003, pp. 49–50.
  53. ^ a b Honigsbaum (Evening Standard) 1995.
  54. ^ Ronson (Channel 4) 2001, 06:12 mins.
  55. ^ Barkun 2003, p. 104.
    • For more on this, see Simms 2002, p. 33ff.
  56. ^ Independent 1994.
  57. ^ Icke (Guardian) 1994.
  58. ^ Barkun 2003, p. 144.
    • Icke writes: "I strongly believe that a small Jewish clique which has contempt for the mass of Jewish people worked with non-Jews to create the First World War, the Russian Revolution, and the Second World War. This Jewish/non-Jewish Elite used the First World War to secure the Balfour Declaration and the principle of the Jewish State of Israel in Palestine (for which, given the genetic history of most Jewish people, there is absolutely no justification on historical grounds or any other). They then dominated the Versailles Peace Conference and created the circumstances which made the Second World War inevitable. They financed Hitler to power in 1933 and made the funds available for his rearmament. See And the Truth Shall Set You Free, pp. 120–121, cited in Offley 2000a.
  59. ^ Taylor 1997.
    • See Icke, "Master races", chapter seven, And the Truth Shall Set You Free.
  60. ^ Theroux 2001.
  61. ^ Ronson (Channel 4) 2001, from 4:26 mins.
  62. ^ Ronson (Guardian) 2001.
    • During a debate in 1999 about whether to allow him to speak at the University of Toronto, law professor Ed Morgan wrote to Robert Prichard, the university's president, describing Icke's work as "precisely the type of vilifying material with which the Supreme Court was concerned in its decision regarding the Criminal Code of Canada ban. The publications praise classic antisemitic tracts, and are replete with references to a secret society carrying on a global conspiracy led by a manipulating Jewish clique"; see Jabbari 1999.
    • Also see Kraft 1999.
  63. ^ Cowley (Independent on Sunday) 2000.
  64. ^ Ronson (Channel 4) 2001. Warman appears at 0:21 mins.
    • Also see Gillis 2008, pp. 4–5.
    • Icke, Children of the Matrix, p. 412.
  65. ^ For comparison with Alex Jones, and for the view that Icke is the most fluent of the genre, see Barkun 2003, p. 98ff, 163.
    • For "professional conspiracy theorist," see Barkun 2011, pp. 71–72.
  66. ^ Barkun 2003, pp. 106–108.
  67. ^ Barkun 2003, p. 108.
  68. ^ Barkun 2003, p. 107.
  69. ^ Icke, Children of the Matrix, pp. 423–424.
  70. ^ Lewis and Kahn 2010, p. 88ff.
  71. ^ Godfrey, Alex (August 8, 2013). "Kick-Ass 2: Mark Millar's superhero powers". The Guardian. Retrieved August 8, 2013. 

References[edit]

Books and papers
  • Barkun, Michael. A Culture of Conspiracy: Apocalyptic Visions in Contemporary America. University of California, 2003.
  • Barkun, Michael. Chasing Phantoms: Reality, Imagination, and Homeland Security Since 9/11. The University of North Carolina Press, 2011.
  • Icke, David. It's a tough game, son!. Piccolo Books, 1983.
  • Icke, David. In the Light of Experience, Warner Books, 1993.
  • Icke, David. Days of Decision. Jon Carpenter Publishing, 1993.
  • Icke, David. And the Truth Shall Set You Free. David Icke Books, 1995.
  • Icke, David. The Biggest Secret: The Book that Will Change the World. David Icke Books, Updated 2nd edition (January 1, 1999), ISBN 978-0952614760, OCLC 862664464.
  • Icke, David. Alice in Wonderland and the World Trade Center Disaster, Bridge of Love Publications, 2002.
  • Icke, David. Tales from the Time Loop. David Icke Books, 2003.
  • Icke, David. Infinite Love is the Only Truth. Bridge of Love Publications, 2005.
  • Icke, David. The David Icke Guide to the Global Conspiracy. David Icke Books, 2007.
  • Icke, David. Human Race Get Off Your Knees: The Lion Sleeps No More. David Icke Books, 2010.
  • Kay, Jonathan. Among the Truthers: A Journey Through America's Growing Conspiracist Underground. HarperCollins, 2011.
  • Lewis, Tyson and Kahn, Richard. "The Reptoid Hypothesis: Utopian and Dystopian Representational Motifs in David Icke's Alien Conspiracy Theory", Utopian Studies, Vol. 16, 2005 (courtesy link).
  • Lewis, Tyson E., and Kahn, Richard. "The Tail Behind the Tale: Toward a Reptoid History," Education Out of Bounds: Reimagining Cultural Studies for a Posthuman Age. Palgrave Macmillan, 2010.
  • Simms, Norman. "Anti-Semitism: A Psychopathological Disease", in Piven, Jerry S. et al.. (eds.). Judaism and Genocide: Psychological Undercurrents of History, Volume 4. Writers Club Press, 2002.
Video
News and other articles

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]