The beauty of conspiracy as a viral Internet phenomenon is that no one really owns it. Searching for the “Houston Project” is much like choosing a particular variety of Linux: it’s all OpenSource, and you’re not entirely sure what you’re getting. Not to mention that it’s difficult to distinguish a bug from a feature.
My personal favorite place to start is also one of the most idiosyncratic: a two-part documentary entitled “Интервенция. Гарвардско-хюстонский проект.” (“Intervention: The Harvard-Houston Project”) Though it was produced by “Svyatyna Works with the participation of the United Slavic Front” (Обьединенный славянский фронт), a closer examination of the Internet sources suggest that the “Front” consists primarily of Ukrainian-based Andrei Svyatyna, whose personal website offers legal services at reasonable rates and virulent anti-Semitism for free.
Part of the beauty of Intervention is that of the Grand Conspiracy at it purest, throwing in everything but the kitchen sink. Over the course of three hours, we hear about US funding for the Orange Revolution, the CIA’s assassination of General Petrov, the State Department’s appropriation of Gene Sharp’s writings about popular resistance in order to foment color revolutions, the Rockefellers, microchips, Hitler’s rise to power as part of Jewish capital’s plot for Slavic genocide and the creation of the state of Israel, and the current situation Ukraine.
But reducing Intervention to its content would be a shame, since the other part of the film’s appeal is that, aesthetically, it embraces randomness to the point of insanity. Intervention is available on YouTube, but I have provided a different link (https://ok.ru/video/25380850327) because YouTube shows the film without sound due to copyright violation. It is difficult to tell exactly which media company complained to YouTube, because stolen audio material is the film’s dominant artistic principle. After several minutes of apparently irrelevant martial arts footage and a long discourse on Japan, Intervention spends a significant chunk of time showing a nearly black screen with two audio soundtracks, one in English, one in Russian, and both taken from the film Avatar. Later the film employs the X-Files theme song, followed by a clip from The Matrix. Perhaps the best moment of theft comes in the second part, when we hear a man’s voice reading aloud a segment of the Houston Project about the use of rock music and the “propaganda” of sex to corrupt young people and destroy all national pride. He is accompanied by an instrumental version of “Feelings.”
Certainly, the creative choices made by “Svyatyna Works” are specific to Intervention, but the eclecticism motivating them is not. This is why discussing the various grand conspiracies to destroy Russia (Harvard, Dulles, and Houston being just the most noteworthy) in isolation is pointless. Each individual conspiratorial tract is an attempt at a grand, systemic edifice, but internal coherence and distinction from possibly competing theories is not the point. Quite the contrary: within a broad discursive framework (such as plots to destroy Russia), there is no such thing as a competing theory. It is all true.
And now we can move on to Houston.
Next: Selling Russia: Retail, or Wholesale?