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Notes on the geopolitics of cults. Part 5: Pulp Fiction

Luigi Corvaglia


The world is ruled by a 'cabal' of pedophile Satanists. This cabal consists largely of the American Deep State, which is supposedly the real occult power, and representatives of progressive culture and politics. These pedo-satanists would not only rape children, but also use their blood, which is rich in adrenochrome, a substance produced under stress, for drug purposes and as an anti-aging agent. Very "pulp". As a plot for a B-movie, it could be good. However, anyone who has not lived in a cave in the last few years knows that this idea is believed by a significant number of people around the world. It is the QAnon theory, according to the signature of the mysterious figure who allegedly revealed the plan of this conspiracy to the world in thousands of posts on social media. The theory predicted that President Trump, called upon by the military leadership to lead them in the fight against the deep state, would destroy the cabal, reveal the secret to the world and carry out mass incarcerations to usher in a reign of true light. The messianic story has found one of its most important international outlets in the Epoch Times. This is a multilingual, far-right newspaper run by the Chinese religious movement Falun Gong. Much of the newspaper's efforts are devoted to promoting the right in America, as well as in Europe. This includes spreading false data about alleged voter fraud in the 2020 U.S. election. In 2019, NBC revealed that the newspaper had virtually become Trump's top advertising supporter, second only to his campaign committee. In 2020, The New York Times called the newspaper a "disinformation machine on a global scale'." According to Media Matters for America, the main goal of the Epoch Times - which is now published in 36 countries under the oversight of a network of nonprofit organizations - is not to make a profit, but to organize a long and extensive 'influence operation.' The goal of this influence operation, in turn, is to 'foment anti-Chinese Communist Party sentiment'." The cult is persecuted in its own country.

Another multilingual magazine dedicated to disseminating news about the Chinese government's persecution of minorities is published in Italy and is called Bitter Winter. For some time, a new religion known as the Church of Almighty God or Eastern Lightning, described as the most persecuted religious movement in the world, has enjoyed the magazine's attention. Again, there is no shortage of neat details. One of the most horrific accusations against the CCP is that it harvests organs from living people (or kills them to remove their vital organs), especially "prisoners of conscience" such as followers of Falun Gong and the Church of Almighty God. According to a 2017 Washington Post report, research and reports have refuted claims that China currently secretly performs 60,000 to 100,000 organ transplants per year. Data compiled by the U.S. firm Quintiles IMS showed that Chinese demand for immunosuppressive drugs, which are needed to prevent patients' bodies from rejecting transplanted organs, was roughly in line with the number of transplants China allegedly performs. On November 14, 2018, in a debate on the issue at the House of Commons in London, Mark Field of the U.K. Foreign and Commonwealth Office responded to a specific question by saying, "We disagree with claims of systematic harvesting from prisoners of conscience, assessing that the evidence they present does not substantiate that claim." Australia has taken a similar position. Nevertheless, a London-based independent tribunal, the China Tribunal - Independent Tribunal into Forced Organ Harvesting from Prisoners of Conscience in China, has upheld the veracity of organ harvesting. Another independent tribunal, the International Tribunal on Natural Law, has even vindicated the QAnon theorists. Indeed, it has set up a judicial commission of inquiry into child trafficking, headed by 'chief counsel' Robert David Steele, a former agent of CIA, who has alleged the existence of an international Satanic network and claimed that Hillary Clinton's campaign team for the 2016 U.S. presidency was made up of Satanic pedophiles, as also reported by the Italian Catholic newspaper La Nuova Bussola Quotidiana. Needless to say, this 'court' does not have a good reputation. It was founded by an anti-Semitic conspiracy theorist, and Robert David Steele himself, the commission's advisor, was no exception (he died of covid in 2021, by the way, because he was against vaccination). On the contrary, the China Tribunal enjoys prestige and attention. In fact, it is cited by the media and parliamentary committees, not by La Nuova Bussola Quotidiana. This body was founded by the International Coalition to End Transplant Abuse in China (ETAC). However, if you take a look at the ETAC website, you will find that many members of their 'management' have close ties to The Epoc Times, the Falun Gong newspaper! If you go through the list of ETAC executives, these connections to Falun Gong show up in almost all of them. ETAC is clearly a front organization for Falun Gong. Of course, this does not mean that the findings and conclusions of this tribunal are necessarily wrong, but its vaunted independence is. Bitter Winter refers to the verdict of this tribunal in his articles on this subject.

Bitter Winter is not run by a controversial cult, as is The Epoch Times, but is published by the prestigious Centro Studi Nuove Religioni (CESNUR) and edited by Massimo Introvigne. Bitter Winter not only informs the West about Chinese persecution of spiritual minorities, but also wages a tight campaign against the "anti-cult" narrative being pushed by organizations it claims are linked to the governments of France, Russia, and China. Another conspiracy that editors hold dear is that of the artificial origin of the coronavirus, which allegedly escaped from a Chinese laboratory.

Follow the money

It is alleged that Epoch Times was the main financier of Donald Trump's election campaign. What is unclear is where the funding for Falun Gong came from. Steve Bannon, the guru of Trump's New Right, has worked with Falun Gong in the production of a documentary for New Tang Dynasty TV (NTD), a network belonging to the cult's holding company, and said that when he spoke with them he got the impression that they had unlimited resources.

The frequent allegations over the years, and thus not just during Trump's presidency, of a link between the Chinese cult and CIA in an anti-Chinese capacity are based on sporadically filtered and reported press accounts. For example, as early as 2010, the Washington Post reported that the U.S. State Department provided $1.5 million in funding to the Global Internet Freedom Consortium, which is based in the United States but linked to the Falun Gong spiritual movement. More recently, in 2021, the U.S. media reported a State Department grant to a software development team owned by Falun Gong. Oddly enough, Steve Bannon himself is involved.

If the wealth of Falun Gong is already of dubious origin and gives rise to speculation, the wealth of the "most persecuted religious movement in the world," the Church of Almighty God, is even stranger. This movement, which worships the reincarnation of Jesus Christ in a Chinese girl, is known for its intense artistic production, which includes films, songs, ballets, musicals and various shows in a dizzying amount and of excellent quality.

It is not clear from where the Church of Almighty God, a minority and persecuted religious movement, takes the enormous sums of money necessary to produce such a quantity of artistic material, produced with great professionalism (translated, among other things, into almost all the languages of the world, in which it is dubbed with equal professionalism). It is a huge commitment of people such as directors, actors, scriptwriters, authors, dancers, choreographers, costume designers, singers, translators, dubbing artists, cameramen, editors, etc. The money required is enormous and the production of such a large amount of artistic material is a daunting task: logistical difficulties, studios, rehearsals, hours of practice incompatible with the daily work of a non-professional, etc...

It is not even clear why, as a recent study by the University of Urbino shows, most of the nodes of the disinformation network about the Covid 19 pandemic in Italy lead to the website of the Church of Almighty God. It is certain that this involvement in spreading Fake News about viruses and vaccines is another common element with Falun Gong.

However, what we know thanks to Bitter Winter, the main source of information on this subject, is that the cult is being fiercely persecuted. Even believers are tortured and killed for their organs. Of course, the persecutions are absolutely plausible, but it is strange that of all the press agencies, networks and freelancers in the world, the only magazine able to receive so much information from a closed country like China is the Turin-based non-profit organization.

Even the source of the money to run CeSNUR and its journals (besides Bitter Winter, there is The Journal of CesSNUR) is puzzling. In a message he exchanged with the Dutch scholar Anton Hein, Introvigne boasted that he earned a lot from his work. It is not clear what kind of work, however, because although he is a partner in the law firm Jacobacci & psrtners in Turin, he has not entered a courtroom in decades, except as an expert on behalf of an accused group. Moreover, it has been decades since he has been hopping from one part of the globe to another every few days to give lectures. Not only is that incompatible with any job, it is very expensive. Other funds, he said, came from other wealthy members, such as economist PierMarco Ferrarsi, also a member of Alleanza Cattolica, and Mormon lawyer Michael Homer, or had come from them in the past. The fact is that CeSNUR is a complex machinery that organises an international conference in a different part of the world every year and publishes two journals, one 'academic' (but the editors are all cult apologists, which makes their 'peer review' invalid) and the other is Bitter Winter, a daily (!) and multilingual magazine. This means huge costs for editors, writers, translators, webmasters, etc.

It is interesting to note, however, that it is known, for example, that Gordon Melton of CeSNUR USA was paid by the Aum Shinrikyo group responsible for the terrorist nerve gas attack in the Tokyo underground, even before he arrived in Japan with another pair of experts to defend the cult. Melton wrote several books that were directly commissioned and paid for by various groups, including the Ramtha School of Enlightenment; the same groups then disseminated his books. The Unification Church in Italy did the same thing years ago with a book by Introvigne. In any case, this funding seems to be only the crumbs of a much larger loaf.

Certainly, doubts about the reliability of Bitter Winter have also been expressed by sources who have nothing to do with the Chinese government, which could have an advantage in discrediting the magazine. For example, from a Korean Protestant publication (see screenshot below) or the website BZBriefs, which is linked to China Source, a non-profit Christian 'ministry" in the US that aims to reduce CCP pressure on Christian churches. Everyone suspects a connection between Bitter Winter and the Church of Almighty God. But who is this church linked to in turn?

After expressing such observations in an article and during an international conference in Paris in February 2021, I was first very inaccurately criticized in Bitter Winter (from Introvigne's own pen) and then grotesquely and hilariously maligned on a number of websites and accounts, all in the same orbit. This explains the reason for the post at the end of the first part of this report. The author, who, we recall, is the director of FOB, does not address the merits of my remarks at all, but invents my collaboration with the Chinese Communist Party because I did not mention torture and organ harvesting. I do not see why I would do that. If I had to speak at a conference on human rights in China and had the necessary skills and knowledge, I would. I have spoken about the links between Falun Gong and the U.S. Government. But would Dr. Amicarelli, having the knowledge, answer my questions about who funds spiritual groups that are persecuted by countries outside the Atlantic Alliance?

Go to the sixth part


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