Canadian Wildfires Ignite Myriad Conspiracy Theories: What’s Really Happening?

By Richard Young | Posted June 19, 2023

Images of the Statue of Liberty and the Washington Monument enshrouded in smoke from the Canadian forest fires are certainly surreal—as if they were plucked directly from Hollywood’s latest apocalyptic sci-fi film. And it’s not just New York and Washington, D.C., that have been blanketed in smoke, but other parts of the East Coast as well. Some of the smoke has even reached past Greenland, over the North Atlantic, all the way to Norway.

And it might get even worse. A recent article in Scientific American, “Canada’s Wildfires Are a Warning of the East Coast’s Smoky Future,” gave this stark warning: “The episode is a wake-up call for the East Coast, which has far less experience with wildfire smoke than the highly flammable West. Shrouded in haze, places like New York and Washington, D.C., experienced their worst air pollution on record last week—and got a possible glimpse of their future.”

So far, Canada’s catastrophic fires have burned nearly 11 million acres of forest—about twice the size of New Jersey. At one point, more than one hundred out-of-control blazes were wreaking damage and sending smoke into the air for millions to inhale downwind. Many regions in North America have issued health advisories, especially for those with compromised respiratory systems, encouraging people to stay inside when possible.

What happened? Eastern Canada is usually wetter this time of year, but exceptionally dry weather, along with record high temperatures, created a tinderbox. All it needed was a match, which came in the form of lightning strikes. Lightning bolts occur around the world about 3,000,000 times a day—roughly 44 per second. A few of these bolts hit the dry Canadian forest and—voila—the place went up in flames. Thus, while certainly tragic, there was nothing mysterious about their start.

But some people are saying that is merely what the authorities want us to think. Indeed, so-called “conspiracy theorists” are claiming to know what really happened.

Enflaming Division and Mistrust

No sooner did the smoke reach the United States—causing in some places for officials to advise citizens to wear masks and stay indoors, which fueled comparisons to COVID-19 mandates—than did a slew of conspiracy theories arise about the fires. 

However reasonable the idea of dry summer forests being ignited by thunderbolts, which happens every year around the world, it simply wasn’t believable for multitudes who have been primed to mistrust everything. One article explains that some conspiracy theorists say the fires were not an “act of God, but [were] part of a nefarious plot—or two, or three. So what really caused those fires? Was it space lasers? Antifa arsonists? The deep-state cabal? Aliens?!”

For example, one theory warns that “Directed Energy Weapons” (DEW), employed by Canadian or U.S. armed forces, were used to create the fires, perhaps as a distraction. “On Twitter, users are blaming an evil ruling class known as ‘the cabal ‘for deploying DEWs ‘both from planes and high-altitude satellites.’” Or maybe it was the Chinese: “In fact, some high-profile people on social media also insist that space lasers are being used by the Chinese government to start the fires that have been spreading in Canada.”

Others say it was ecoterrorism. “‘I bet a good portion of the wildfires raging across the country were started by green terrorists who want to give their climate change campaign a little boost,’ Maxime Bernier, a former foreign minister-turned fringe party leader, tweeted earlier this week.”

Even the Elect

 Of course, conspiracy theories are nothing new. From the death of Princess Diana, the attacks on 9/11, to the moon landings, the world continues to be inundated with all sorts of mostly unverified claims about deep plots and intrigues. The Canadian wildfire conspiracy theories are merely one more manifestation of lost or confused people looking for deeper meaning behind the tragedies inflicting our world.

But Christians shouldn’t be surprised by the disasters or the confusion and division that result from them. The Bible warns us about all sorts of deceptions that would be inflicted upon the world. Revelation 12, talking about the fall of Lucifer from heaven, reads: “And war broke out in heaven: Michael and his angels fought with the dragon; and the dragon and his angels fought, but they did not prevail, nor was a place found for them in heaven any longer. So the great dragon was cast out, that serpent of old, called the Devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world” (Revelation 12:7–9).

Who deceives the whole world? Is it any wonder, then, that all sorts of error and deceptions have existed in the world from the beginning? Is it any wonder that people are primed to believe all sorts of lies and errors—whether from the mouths of governments or from the disenfranchised or from their churches? And it is going to get worse as the end nears. Jesus warned that “false christs and false prophets will rise and show signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect” (Matthew 13:22). 

Even the elect deceived? Our world is suffused with all sorts of false theories, false predictions, and false views. Whether in the secular realm or in the religious, deceptions abound—and as disasters mount, even the elect will be tempted to blame someone, anyone, for their suffering.

What, then, are sincere seekers of the truth to do? Our only safety is found in the Word of God—to know what it teaches and to apply it to our lives daily. With so many competing conspiracies and beliefs out there, knowledge of the Word and what it teaches about the times in which we live is crucial. To help you better understand the Scriptures, especially regarding last-day events, visit our Bible Prophecy Truth website. Now more than ever, with so much nonsense filling the airwaves and cyberspace, people need to be grounded in the Bible. 

Richard Young
Richard Young is a writer for Amazing Facts International and other online and print publications.

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