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In a political sense, conspiracy refers to a group of people united in the goal of usurping, altering or overthrowing an established political power. Typically, the final goal is to gain power through a revolutionary coup d'état or through assassination. A conspiracy can also be used for infiltration of the governing system.
A conspiracy is to be contrasted with a cabal. The two are similar but have quite different connotations; in contrast to a cabal, a conspiracy usually looks to overthrow a fixed power instead of usurping it from within.
A "conspiracy theory" is a belief that a conspiracy has actually been decisive in producing a political event which the theorists strongly disapprove of.
Notable political conspiracies
- — Bye Plot, leads to the execution of Sir George Brooke
- 1605 - Gunpowder Plot to blow up the House of Lords during the State Opening of Parliament as prelude to a popular revolt in the Midlands, during which James's nine-year-old daughter, Princess Elizabeth, was to be installed as the Catholic head of state; often called the Gunpowder Treason Plot; origin of Guy Fawkes Day
- 1718-1720 The Pontcallec conspiracy during the minority of Louis XV to overthrow the Regent Philippe II, Duke of Orléans in favour of Philip V of Spain
- 1749 - Conspiracy of the Slaves by Muslim slaves to kill Grand Master Manuel Pinto da Fonseca and take over Malta with the help of the Barbary states.
- 1788 - Anjala conspiracy
- 1832 - Georgian plot, assassination of the Russian imperial administration and restoration of the Georgian monarchy
- 1865 - Abraham Lincoln assassination plot, to include assassination of cabinet members
- 1898 - The Dreyfus Affair, a coordinated attempt to falsely accuse Alfred Dreyfus of treason
- 1903 - The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, presented as authentic text by the Tsar's secret police efforts to foment anti-Semitism
- 1914 - The Black Hand, a secret society controlled by Serbian Military Intelligence, coordinates the assassination of Franz Ferdinand, thus causing World War I.
- 1924 - The Zinoviev letter, published in the United Kingdom before the 1924 general election, is a letter now believed to be a forgery. It was signed with the name of Grigory Zinoviev and addressed to the Communist Party of Great Britain. Its publication and contents led to speculation of a Russian communist conspiracy. The Conservative Party landslide at the election was partly attributed to the letter.
- 1938 - Presumed Hitler Youth Conspiracy, NKVD case in Moscow involving some 70 arrests and 40 executions of teenagers and adults, later found to be baseless
- 1939 - Operation Himmler and its Gleiwitz incident, "False Flag" terrorism by Nazi Germany as pretext for invasion of Poland
- — Shelling of Mainila, "False Flag" terrorism by USSR as pretext for Winter War
- ^ Joseph E. Uscinski and Joseph M. Parent, American Conspiracy Theories (2014) excerpt
- ^ Hawass, Zahi, The Mysteries of Abu Simbel: Ramesses II and the Temples of the Rising Sun, The American University in Cairo Press, 2001, ISBN 977-424-623-3, p. 12
- ^ "The Catilinarian Conspiracy". ancienthistory.about.com.
- ^ "The assassination of Julius Caesar, 44 BC". eyewitnesstohistory.com. 2004.
- ^ "The Pisonian Conspiracy". nazoreans.com.
- ^ "The pazzi conspiracy". palazzo-medici.it.
- ^ "The year of Lucretia d'Este, Duchess of Ferrara". mmdtkw.org.
- ^ "Plots against Elizabeth I". elizabethfiles.com. 29 January 2010.
- ^ "Queen Elisabeth I". englishhistory.net.
- ^ "The Babington Plot". history-magazine.com.
- ^ "Anthony Babington and the Babington Plot". luminarium.org.
- ^ "Conspiracy". alienscientist.com.
- ^ "The Gunpowder plot of 1605". historylearningsite.co.uk.
- ^ Sciberras, Sandro. "Maltese History - E. The Decline of the Order of St John In the 18th Century" (PDF). St. Benedict College. Archived from the original (PDF) on 26 June 2015.
- ^ "Anjala Manor". spottinghistory.com.
- ^ "The Death of President Lincoln, 1865". eyewitnesstohistory.com.
- ^ "Emile Zola writes to Alfred Dreyfus at the height of the Dreyfus affair". shapell.org.
- ^ "Jews and Politics in the Twentieth Century: From the Bund to the Rise of the Nazis". Judaica in the Collections of the Hoover Institution Archives. Hoover Institution, Stanford University. 2004. Archived from the original on 2006-06-13. Retrieved .
- ^ https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/10363320/Top-political-conspiracy-theories.html
- ^ Hans Schafranek, Natalia Musienko, "The Fictitious 'Hiter-Jugend' of the Moscow NKVD" in: Barry McLoughlin, Kevin McDermott (Eds.), Stalin's Terror: High Politics and Mass Repression in the Soviet Union. Palgrave MacMillan (2003), p. 208ff. ISBN 1-4039-0119-8. Retrieved November 24, 2011
- ^ "The Valkyrie Conspiracy". valkyrie-plot.com.
- ^ "The 20 July bomb plot - a summary". historyinanhour.com. 20 July 2010.
- ^ "The July bomb plot". historylearningsite.co.uk.
- ^ "Operation Ajax: CIA, Muhammad Mossadeq, and the Shah of Iran". coldwar.org.
- ^ "Israel Military Intelligence: The Lavon Affair". jewishvirtuallibrary.org.
- ^ "Pompidou dans la tourmente". lexpress.fr. 26 July 2007.
- ^ "The history place". historyplace.com.
- ^ "What was the Watergate Scandal?". uspolitics.about.com.
- ^ "The fighting solidarity organization". sw.org.pl.
- ^ "Hunger strikes and the Brighton bomb". news.bbc.co.uk. 18 March 1999.
- ^ "A strange but true tale of voter fraud and bioterrorism". theatlantic.com. 10 June 2014.
- ^ "The Iran Contra Affair 1986-1987". washingtonpost.com.
- ^ "Iran contra affair". infoplease.com.
- ^ "How PR sold the war in the persian gulf". prwatch.org.