Concerns are being expressed that conspiracy theory speculations about the Jade Helm 15 military exercises, previously the preserve of the right wing fringe, has moved to the mainstream among GOP voters in major conservative states, such as Texas and Utah.
A recent poll by Public Policy Polling (PPP) shows that Jade Helm conspiracy theories continue to gain traction. The poll found (see poll result here - page 25) that about 32 percent of Republican primary voters across the nation believe that the Jade Helm 15 military exercises, announced in March by the Army's Special Operations Command at Fort Bragg, NC, are part of a sinister plan by the federal government to occupy Texas militarily and impose martial law.
Conspiracy theorists have been pushing the idea that the authorities are trying to use the exercise, scheduled to take place from July 15 to September 15 in several Southwest states, including Texas, Arizona and New Mexico, as a cover-up for President Barack Obama's plan to fulfill his "third term" ambition, a key aspect of the New World Order (NWO) agenda, according to conspiracy theorists.
Although the military authorities said that training exercises involving elite forces of the military are not unusual, they admitted that the "size and scope of Jade Helm 15 sets it apart" from previous exercises. Texas was selected for the exercise because it has large expanses of undeveloped land with terrain similar to what US forces could face abroad.
The military authorities had tried to calm fears, saying that the only difference that people will notice during the exercises is an "increase in vehicle and military air traffic and its associated noise."
But according to far right wing conspiracy theorists, it is a part of a sinister plot to impose martial law in states considered politically hostile to the global leftist NWO agenda, take away people's guns and round up opponents of the administration for internment in FEMA concentration camps.
Despite the efforts of the military to calm fears, conspiracy theory rumor-mongering about the planned military exercises has moved to the mainstream in conservative majority states such as Texas and Utah, The New York Times observed recently.
The spread of conspiracy theory paranoia has been facilitated by intensive speculative coverage of preparations for the training exercises by fringe conspiracy theory websites such as Alex Jones' InfoWars and All News Pipeline.
All News Pipeline, for instance, has recently focused almost exclusively on conspiracy theory fear-mongering about the upcoming exercises, arousing fear among its susceptible right wing audience about an impending declaration of martial law and the consummation of the sinister machinations of the NWO elite who have allegedly hatched a plot to impose a global leftist dictatorship in collaboration with the United Nations, and lately the Vatican, presided over by the "liberal" Pope Francis.
Biblical end-time conspiracy theorists speculate that President Barack Obama and the "liberal" pope are somehow linked to the Anti-Christ or "Beast" and the "false prophet" mentioned in the Book of Revelation.
In a recent blog post, All News Pipleline's arch-conspiracy theorist Susan Duclos, raised alarm with a dramatic headline, "Jade Helm 15 And The Coming 'Gray State' -- We Were Warned! Welcome To The New World Order - Everything Changed Overnight!"
"All across the country reports have come filing in of the US military on the streets of America, out in the open… we can slowly see the 'Gray State' materializing before our eyes... the warnings of preparation for economic collapse and America one day being turned into a third world nation have been going out for a very long time... we have all been warned."
Such rumor mongering continues to gain traction among people who worry endlessly about things such as the clandestine meetings of the Illuminati, asteroid impact catastrophe, blood moon apocalypse, FEMA camps, chemtrails, fluoride in drinking water, and shapeshifting aliens controlling Obama's administration.
With the widespread acceptance of Jade Helm conspiracy theory among GOP voters, politicians have recently been making statements that critics say amount to legitimizing fringe political paranoia and pandering to extreme right voters considered a significant section of the demographic in major conservative states such as Texas.
Recently, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott issued a directive to the commander of the Texas state Guard, Major Gen. Gerald Betty, to monitor the Jade Helm 15 operations in Texas because it was "important that Texans know their safety, constitutional rights, private property rights and civil liberties will not be infringed."
He defended the directive against accusations that he was pandering to the far right, saying that widespread concern about the military exercises makes it necessary for "someone to be in charge of gathering and dissemination information."
Republican Rep. Louie Gohmert (TX-01) expressed concern that the Jade Helm operation map labeled GOP majority areas such as Texas, Utah and parts of Southern California "hostile" territory. He said the fears among GOP voters were justified because Obama had made statements in the past that indicate he considers those who "support the Constitution... and 'cling to guns or religion'" a threat to the state.
"Once I observed the map depicting 'hostile,' 'permissive,' and 'uncertain' states and locations, I was rather appalled that the hostile areas amazingly have a Republican majority, 'cling to their guns and religion,' and believe in the sanctity of the United States Constitution."
Senator Ted Cruz also weighed in on the matter in a recent interview with Bloomberg, saying that he reached out to the Pentagon and received assurance that Jade Helm is only a military training exercise. However, he said that the widespread fears about the exercises were understandable because the administration of President Barack Obama has been "disrespecting the liberty of its citizens."
"I understand the reason for concern and uncertainty, because when the federal government has not demonstrated itself to be trustworthy in this administration... for six years, a federal government disrespecting the liberty of the citizens. That produces fear, when you see a government that is attacking our free speech rights, or Second Amendment rights, or religious liberty rights. That produces distrust."[Image: Wikimedia Commons/Jade Helm map via dcclotheslineth.com]