I think I have mentioned before how popular conspiracy theories are in Egypt. Frankly, I am getting a little tired of hearing them. It’s not only that I find most of them offensive on many levels as well as completely unrealistic, but that a lot of people here really truly believe them. They do not question these ideas. There is no academic or rational reflection.
So I try not to get into these conversations these days if I don’t have to, but the guy in the book store down the street said to me today “oh, you are American? Do you think Bin Laden was the one who brought down the towers?” He said that it did not make sense for Bin Laden to do this because he was a wealthy man, so why would he leave his riches and go live in the mountains? In addition, it is not in Bin Laden’s مصلحة, or interest.
And guess who’s interests it is in? America’s, because they do not have an enemy after the fall of the Soviet Union, “so they bring the towers,” and according to him, it’s as simple as that. In addition, surprise surprise, it’s in the Jews interest, because in order for Israel to survive there needs to be conflict in the Middle East. He said that if there is peace in the Middle East, then all the Jews will return to the countries from which they originally came (including Egypt) because they will not need Israel to protect them any longer. I really did not get that one.
I asked this guy where he got all of these ideas from, and he said “I read it in a book!”