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10 Long Awaited Conspiracy Theories

by Lee Bradbury
fact checked by Alex Hanton

This is our third place winner in the Listverse launch competition. This list looks at 10 more conspiracy theories that may, or may not, link to various theories Listverse has already covered. By popular demand, here are 10 awesome examples of governmental cover-ups, global cataclysms on the verge of occurrence, and supernatural shenanigans that defy explanation. Read, if you dare, but keep an eye over your shoulder: Someone may be watching…


Amelia Earhart


Everyone knows about Earhart’s ill-fated voyage around the world.  She intended to be the first person to circumnavigate the globe at the equator, which would be the longest such trip (about 29,000 miles).  After a failed first attempt, she departed with one of her best friends, Fred Noonan, from California to Miami. After leaving Miami, Earhart’s last stop before the Pacific was at Lae, New Guinea, on June, 29, 1937.  She and Noonan departed from there on July 2, making for Howland Island, 2,556 miles away, a tiny island in the middle of nowhere.   However, they never arrived at Howland.  All that is known is from Earhart’s radio transmissions, attempting to find Howland.  The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter, Itasca, picked up her voice and attempted to reply to her, but never got through.  The Itasca records them as having made it to the immediate vicinity of the island around 7:58 a.m., on July 3: “We must be on you, but cannot see you — but gas is running low. Have been unable to reach you by radio. We are flying at 1,000 feet.”  The fact that the Itasca could not get through to her makes no sense.

No one ever saw her or Noonan again.  The various theories as to what happened to them have run from the most plausible “pilot error and exhaustion of fuel, landing in the sea,” to “crash-landing on another island controlled by the hostile Japanese, who killed both, or forced Earhart to become the Tokyo Rose, the friendly American demoralizer of WWII,” to the most extreme, “Earhart flew through a temporal rift.”  That’s a rip in the fabric of space-time, and mathematics now states that such “wormholes” are possible, although mathematics cannot yet answer whether or not they exist in Earth’s atmosphere. The Bermuda Triangle is the most infamous area where conspiracy theorists say these wormholes are.


Project Phoenix


Project Phoenix is an independently-funded foundation, intent on the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI). Many separate organizations, foundations and even individual people, are involved in finding out if we are not alone in the universe. Phoenix, so the theory states, is secretly in charge of all the major organizations searching for alien signals. They are based out of Mountain View, CA, and went online in 1995. They use the largest telescope in the Southern Hemisphere, the Parkes radio scope in New South Wales, Australia. They do not scan the whole sky, but only those systems within 200 light-years of ours, totaling about 800 stars. So far, there have been no signals,  or so we’ve been told.
In fact, the Project is a cover for a secret communications link between Earth and some alien intelligence out there. Now that the aliens know where we are, they are on their way, and they may not come in peace. Project Phoenix has no intention of telling anyone, of course, and has brokered a deal for the survival of its members (who usually include all the most powerful people in the world) by giving away the weaknesses of our military organizations. No announcement will be made to the public until the alien arrival is complete, in order to avoid a panic for as long as possible. This point ties in with #3.


The Death of Mozart

Mozart Family Portrait By Della Croce 1780-1

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart may have been the most naturally gifted genius, in any field of human activity, that the world has ever seen, or shall see. His memory was like a tape recorder. He wrote down Gregorio Allegri’s Miserere from memory, after only one hearing, at the age of 14, when on a visit to Rome. He went, later that day, to the second performance and made a few minor corrections. His music is as perfectly fresh, light and brilliant to listen to today as it was in his lifetime.
But every genius has his competitors. The film Amadeus follows the theory that Antonio Salieri poisoned him because he could not stand being second best (even though he was far below second place) to “a boastful, lustful, smutty, infantile boy.” All that is known of Mozart’s death comes from correspondence that has survived to be scrutinized by modern doctors.  He fell suddenly ill, while conducting the premiere of La clemenza di Tito, in Prague on September 6, 1791.  He died on December 5th aged 35, and in the prime of his life.
This has given rise to the theory that he was poisoned, and Salieri, who made no secret of his disdain for Mozart’s character, seems a plausible scapegoat.  However, Salieri also made no secret of his love for Mozart’s music, and it seems unlikely that he would have ended such genius.  Mozart had, however, other enemies. There are about 120 different diagnoses floating around concerning his death, from poisoning to overwork, cirrhosis or alcohol poisoning. Even trichinosis (which is usually acquired from consuming undercooked pork) has been suggested.  The most common theory is rheumatic fever.  The official cause was recorded as “severe miliary fever,” which could be anything.


Apricot Pits Cure Cancer


Apricot pits, like many fruit seeds, contain cyanogenic glycosides, which are similar enough to cyanide to kill you, if you eat a large quantity of them.  These glycosides also have a chemical in them called laetrile (LAY-uh-trill), which the presented theory states can not only prevent cancer, but can actively seek it out in the body and destroy it with extreme prejudice.  The American Cancer Association currently has no such drug in its arsenal: chemo-therapy and radiation therapy are, supposedly, the best we can do at present, and they are woefully inefficient, often poisoning the patient to death.

The theory states that laetrile is the cure the whole world has been looking for, throughout the 20th Century, but the ACA and the American Medical Association refuse to let this knowledge out, because once the cure is available, the cancer industry will go out of business. There is factual documentation that apricot pits were used in the 1950s in Europe, to reduce the size of tumors, and the documentation states that it worked. But, rather than cure people, as per the Hippocratic Oath, the doctors involved in this cover-up choose to treat people indefinitely, prolonging life for a few years, while the bills, and their paychecks, rack up astronomically. To this end, the AMA and ACA have issued public service announcements defaming apricot pits as an extremely dangerous food to ingest: you have to crush the pit just right to extract the laetrile with only a minute quantity of cyanide, so you do not poison yourself. This is true, but the two organizations maintain that it impossible to do this and that laetrile does nothing for cancer, even though both statements are verifiably false.


The Man in the Iron Mask

Screen Shot 2010-10-14 At 8.17.54 Am-1

A lot of time has passed since Louis XIV was the King of France. So, here are the facts concerning a prisoner arrested in 1669, during his reign. His name is given as Eustache Dauger, and he was transferred from prison to prison, all over France, for the next 34 years. It appears as though the authorities didn’t know what to do with him. He was held in the Fortress of Pignerol, then in the Bastille, and for a time, he was fitted with a padlocked steel mask over his entire head, with slots for his eyes, nose and mouth. For most of his incarceration, he was masked with black velvet. Correspondence from the Marquis de Louvois, one of the king’s secretaries, to the warden of Pingerol, indicated that the prisoner was to be housed in a special cell with multiple iron doors, so that no one outside could hear him.  The prisoner was to be instructed that if he ever said anything other than “food” or “water” he was to be killed on the spot. 

It seems strange that such pains should be taken to ensure a prisoner’s silence and solitude for 34 years. He mercifully died on 19 November, 1703, in the Bastille, and was buried the next day, under the name “Marchioly.” Theories abound as to his identity. The fact that he was not simply killed implies that he was of the royal lineage, and Louis XIV had to honor the law that no person of royal blood be murdered. However, if he was happy to put this man in prison for 34 years, he obviously had no problem circumventing the law in the first place. Dauger may have been a twin brother of the king, and thus a challenge to his throne, in which case Louis could not bring himself to have his own brother killed. Voltaire believed that he was the king’s illegitimate half-brother. Alexander Dumas Sr. used this theory in his famous book, on which most of the films have been based. He may also have been a general named Vivien du Bulonde, who acted in a cowardly manner at the siege of Cuneo, and infuriated the king. But then, why the mask? France had many generals. There are many other candidates, including the son of Charles II of England. Who was that masked man? Pictured above is the view from the real cell of the Man in the Iron Mask. [Image source]




One of the more chilling moments of Saint John the Divine’s Revelation from God, at the end of the Bible is Apocalypse. 13:16-18, which says “And he shall make all, both little and great, rich and poor, freemen and bondmen, to have a character in their right hand, or on their foreheads. And that no man might buy or sell, but he that hath the character, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. Here is wisdom. He that hath understanding, let him count the number of the beast. For it is the number of a man: and the number of him is six hundred sixty-six.”

This was written at a time before global communication was feasible, but now, at a time when it has been worked out to an exact science, Christian fundamentalists and Apocalypse enthusiasts are more scared than ever. They fear anyone attempting to “communize” the world with commercial implants: barcodes in the forehead or hand, designed to facilitate buying and selling. Such implants have not yet appeared, but the theory states that the moment is close at hand, when all the UPC codes that are printed on packages will be removed and one UPC per person will be used, scanned directly from that person’s body, and that we will not have a choice about using them.

To this end, the theory goes on to say that the barcodes on packages, credit cards, debit cards and even personal checks are secretly hiding a 666 somewhere on them. The theory is only corroborated, however implausibly, by the fact that barcodes did not come about until 1948, the same year that the Jews finally got a home to call their own. According to the theory, Bernard Silver, who invented barcodes that year after overhearing the president of a local food chain asking for a system to read product information, via machine, in a grocery store, was deceived by supernatural forces into inventing them: the president of the food chain was actually Satan.




The national Security Agency does exist. Their headquarters are located in Fort Meade, Maryland, fifteen miles southwest of Baltimore. The parking lot has 18,000 spaces, most of which are filled during the day, and Interstate-295 South has an exit solely for those employees, with a road sign that reads, “NSA Employees Only.” The NSA works in tandem with the CIA and FBI, but its activities are so top-secret that no one in the entire planet, except for a handful of high-ranking NSA supervisors, knows what they are doing.  They are officially “responsible for the collection and analysis of foreign communications and foreign signals intelligence, which involves cryptanalysis.”

Whenever you see the word “crypt” in a conspiracy theory, some wonderful fun is going to come about.  What no one realises, not even the President, is that the NSA knows the truth behind every single conspiracy theory ever put forth. This is because they have the entire world’s information at their fingertips, and control the Internet more diabolically than Stalin controlled the Soviet Union.  The conspiracy theories about the NSA either blame it for, or accuse it of withholding information concerning: the 9/11 terrorist attacks; the alien landings at Roswell, NM, and Rendlesham, UK; all UFO sightings; the location of the Ark of the Covenant; the identity of the antichrist, who is alive and well; the Kennedy assassinations (both of them); the protection of high-ranking Nazis after the war, including Hitler; the Philadelphia Experiment and the Montauk Project; the date for the end of the world, according to the Mayan long count calendar; the location of the asteroid that will hit us; and just about anything else you could dream up. 
That’s how this theory works: once you set it up with an all-powerful, secret government organization, it can effectively link to any other conspiracy theory.

What’s most mysterious about it is that Harry Truman founded the NSA, in 1952, 5 years after the founding of the CIA, which was also courtesy of Truman, who was a 33rd degree Master Freemason. The NSA have a special handshake, the very same one the Freemasons use, or so the theory states. The CIA is on the books as having “no police or law enforcement functions, either at home or abroad,” including “sabotage, anti-sabotage, demolition and evacuation measures…subversion [and] assistance to underground resistance movements, guerrillas and refugee liberation movements, and support of indigenous anti-communist elements in threatened countries of the free world.” The NSA has no such requirements on its books. No one can control them because no one knows what they’re up to. They are not even thought to go by the name “NSA,” but instead by “National Security Council,” which is actually a White House cover to make it appear that the President is in control of them. Conspiracy theorists lovingly refer to them as “No Such Agency.”


Star Wars


No, not the film, but the Strategic Defense Initiative. The brainchild of the late, great Ronald Reagan, who insisted on staying one step ahead of the Soviets, was going to be comprised of particle beam weapons (á la Tesla’s Death Ray), electromagnetic railguns (á la the Schwarzenegger film Eraser) and X-Ray lasers that would shoot down nuclear ICBMs. America was skeptical, in case you don’t remember, and the whole project was eventually scrapped, because of the impossibility of maintaining such a wide array of satellite orbits, communications, computers and so on. Even after American scientists told Reagan it was impossible, he refused to give up on his dream. Once his presidency (or reign of terror, as some might say) was over, the SDI faded into obscurity. But why, in the world, was he so obsessed with it? Anyone else would have given up along with the scientists. Especially considering that the SDI’s main task was to deal with a Soviet nuclear bombardment. And yet Gorbachev offered, in 1986, to eliminate all nuclear weapons in the world within 15 years, which would have been the crowning achievement of Reagan’s career. But he said no.
The theory states that Reagan knew of an impending extraterrestrial attack on Earth, just like H. G. Wells depicted. Only Reagan and a very select few knew of it, and did not want to terrify the world’s population. So, he tried to cover it up, while preparing for it in true Reagan style: don’t beg for mercy–fight back. The most convincing evidence that aliens are on the move right now, and perhaps not far away, comes in two parts: firstly that George W. Bush tried his best to reinitiate the SDI, and it was dubbed “Son of Star Wars” and “The Empire Strikes Back.” Dubya refused to listen to the protests of anyone, even the UK, which was where he intended to build part of the SDI system. The second part is a remark Reagan made to Steven Spielberg at the 1982 White House screening of “E. T.: the Extraterrestrial.” He leaned over to Spielberg and said: “You have no idea how damned close to reality this is.”


Earth Is Hollow


This is one of the lister’s personal favorites. For centuries, people believed that the earth is hollow in the center, that it is not a superheated mantle spinning around a solid iron core, but is in fact a hollow sphere of crust, like a gumball. How thin this crust measures is up for grabs, but the theory centers on what might be residing down there. Edmond Halley, the namesake of Halley’s Comet, theorized, in 1692, that the Earth is a shell, 500 miles thick, with concentric rings inside. Inside there would be a solid core, and between the rings there would be various atmospheres of fluorescent gases.  When these gases escape at the poles, they create the aurora borealis and australis.

By the 20th Century, it had reached the mainstream, been argued against by scientists and caught the attention of Adolf Hitler, who sent a mission to the South Pole to find the entrance he was sure was there. It would lead to the underground, where Hitler believed a subterranean race of 12-foot-tall, super intelligent humanoids lived.  He intended to convince them to come up to the surface and fight for Nazi Germany, or at least give the Nazis some futuristic firepower.  Whether Hitler sent this mission or not is part of the theory, but if he did, it never came back. This was due to either having been killed by the subterranean race, or Antarctica.

He was a madman when it came to occult theories like this, sending missions to Tibet to find Shambhala, and yes, he actually attempted to find the Ark of the Covenant.  Admiral Karl Donitz is on record as stating that the Fuhrer could be protected by the Kriegsmarine with “an invisible fortification anywhere in the world.”  He also stated at the Nuremberg Trials that this invisible fortification was “in the midst of eternal ice.” Once Nazi occultism got into the mix, this theory really took off. It became a worldwide governmental cover-up, the true source of all the UFOs ever witnessed and photographed, and the secret hideout of many high-ranking Nazis after the war, including Hitler, Himmler (the corpse was a double), Josef Mengele for a time, and many others. It is said that the subterranean race has the power to keep people alive forever, which means Hitler is still doing fine and may be on his way back to the surface someday.


Tom Ogle

Ogle Under Car 400-1

You have probably never heard of him.  Tom Ogle invented a vapor-fuel intake system, in 1977, for all automobiles.  His system could be affixed to any existing car engine, and would enable the car to travel 100 miles on one gallon of gas.  He claimed that the emissions were clean enough that you could dry your hair with the exhaust.  He astounded the auto industry with his invention, and was, in fact, approached in 1978 by a representative of Shell Oil, who offered him $20 million, on the spot, for the patent and plans to his invention.  He refused, stating flatly that Shell would simply shelve the idea and it would never see the light of day.

Tom Ogle was found dead from an apparent overdose of Darvon and alcohol poisoning on 19, August, 1981.  He had been known to drink, but never so heavily that he had to go to the hospital.  The Darvon is the weakest link to the report that his death was an accidental suicide: Darvon is an opioid painkiller.  It does nothing else, and Ogle had no history of using it. He also had no immediate history of pain requiring an opioid analgesic.  The theory states that he was murdered by a Shell-hired assassin, who made it look like a suicide.  He actually got his fuel system patented, on 11 December, 1979, with patent number 4,177,179.  He was shot and wounded outside an El Paso, TX, bar earlier in the summer of 1981.  He claimed that people were after him for his patent.  Three months after his death, his original schematics and blueprints went missing from the Patent Office in Washington, DC.  Some of his schematics have turned up on the Internet, but not enough have surfaced to actually build his device.

fact checked by Alex Hanton