Christopher Allbritton describes a persistent belief among Iraqis in something he refers to as The Plot:
Robert Fisk once wrote about Lebanon that The Plot—the plans of foreign powers to defeat and humiliate Lebanon during its 1975-1990 civil war—was always present in his conversations with Lebanese. He joked that The Plot should have its own chair at the table at every meal, since it was always a topic of dinner conversations. Well, Iraq has the same mentality. It is inconceivable to Iraqis that America, as powerful as it is, could have bungled this place as badly as it has. Americans walked on the moon! And they can’t find Zarqawi?
I’ve noticed the same belief system among some Arabs that I know. The Plot is usually perpetrated by The Jews, and nothing happens by accident or due to incompetence. The most depressing thing about this belief system is that it is utterly disempowering. If hidden forces are behind everything that’s going on, then there’s nothing you can do as an individual to make things better.