Aaron Russo

Back in 2006, Alex Jones did an interview with a man named Aaron Russo. This interview has since become something of a legendary moment in Alex's career, as it serves to reinforce so many very unproven claims Alex had made over the years.

In their chat, Russo makes a number of demonstrably untrue statements about the federal income tax (we covered a lot of that on our podcast about that, so it will be left aside here), but what elevates this interview to the level of "required viewing" is the part where Aaron Russo claims that he spoke with a member of the Rockefeller family who told him about the attacks of 9/11 a full eleven months prior to them happening.

Any half-competent interviewer would have stopped the interview after their subject made a claim like this, in order to really nail down the details and make sure they were on solid ground. At very least, they would do their due diligence immediately after the interview by vetting the information and making sure it matched with reality.

This is a gigantic scoop, and if it is true, it's proof-positive of the claims that Alex Jones makes about a shadowy group of elites planning terrorism to take over the world. But, and this is a huge but, if the information is not true, and you publish it anyway, it really makes it seem like you don't care much about the actual truth, you're just desperate for anything that appears to support your worldview.

Suffice it to say, Alex did not do his due diligence, he did zero research into the claims that Russo was making and just blindly accepted them as true, which is a problem because they really don't appear to be true. 

The first problem is a big one. The man who Russo claims told him about 9/11 in advance was a man named Nicholas Rockefeller, who they assert is a member of the Rockefeller family. Unfortunately, there is no record of a Nicholas Rockefeller related to the Rockefeller line.

The side of the family that Alex is concerned with is the descendants of John D. Rockefeller Sr., the great oil magnate and "richest man in America." John Sr. had five children, four daughters and one son (a full chart of descendants can be found here. Note: this website has taken a lot of its copy from Wikipedia, but their list of family members is based on citations in the bibliography they provide, so the site is useful, if only for that).

  • His daughter Elizabeth married Charles Augustus Strong and had one daughter, Margaret Rockefeller Strong, who married George de Cuevas and had two children with him: Elisabeth Strong Cuevas and John de Cuevas.
  • His daughter Alice died at just over the age of one, and thus had no offspring.
  • His daughter Alta married Ezra Parmalee Prentice. They had three children: John Rockefeller Prentice, Mary Adeline Prentice, and Spelman Prentice, after this generation, the name Rockefeller disappears from their line, even as a secondary name.
  • His daughter Edith married Harold Fowler McCormick and had five children. Four of them took the McCormick name, and the other John Rockefeller McCormick died of scarlet fever just before the age of four.

No Nick or Nicholas Rockefellers there. This leaves us with John Sr.'s son, John D. Rockefeller Jr., who had six children:

  • His daughter Abigail married David Milton, they had two daughters who both took the Milton surname.
  • His son John III had four children, none named Nick or Nicholas and none have children of their own named Nick or Nicholas or any permutation of the name.
  • His son Nelson was Gerald Ford's vice president, and had seven children, none are named Nick or Nicholas, and none have children named Nick or Nicholas. One of them, Michael Rockefeller did go missing in an expedition in New Guinea and his body was never found, though.
  • His son Laurence had four children none named Nick or Nicholas, and none have children named Nick or Nicholas.
  • His son Winthrop had one son, Winthrop Paul Rockefeller, who has no children named Nick or Nicholas.
  • His son David (one of Alex's big imagined enemies) had six children, none named Nick or Nicholas, and none who had children of their own by those names either.

You find the same absence of a Nick or Nicholas if you look through the lineage that comes down from John D. Rockefeller Sr.'s brother, William Avery Rockefeller Jr. as well.

It's tremendously unlikely that any descendant of William and John Jr.'s brother Franklin Rockefeller would be an insider in any way, considering that Franklin estranged himself from his brothers in 1898 and refused to speak to them all the way to his death in 1917. Also, none of them appear to be named Nick or Nicholas.

Further, William and John Jr.'s sister Mary Ann married and took on the surname Rudd, which passed on to her children. Their other sister Frances Rockefeller died before her second birthday. The final sister of theirs, Lucy, married and took on the name Briggs. She did have a male child who took the Rockefeller name, but he died at age 9.

There just is no Nicholas in their family, which is almost amazing in and of itself, given how many ancestors and generations we are considering here. You would think there would be one Nick in there, but it's just not one of their family names.

Suffice it to say that whoever Aaron Russo was talking to was absolutely not a member of the Rockefeller family, with the only possible exception being that he is a relative so distant as to make the familial relation completely meaningless.

So who is Nicholas Rockefeller?

Online sleuths have dug up that there is someone named Nicholas Rockefeller who is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and insisted that this is proof that he is related to David Rockefeller, being as David was a big deal in the CFR. But, this too is meaningless. The CFR membership list also includes Susan Cohn Rockefeller and Mark L. Rockefeller as members, and they also do not appear to be related to the Rockefeller family in question.

Further, the mere fact that one is a member of the CFR does not do anything to prove that they somehow know the supposed secrets of the "elites." Consider that the following people are all (or were) members of the Council: Tom Brokaw, Warren Beatty, Jesse Dylan (the guy who directed How High and American Wedding), Steve Pieczenik (frequent Alex Jones guest), Carl Sagan, and Shirley Temple.

There are a lot of high level political figures, on both sides of the political spectrum, that have been and are members, but that's not the whole story. A lot of the people whose names you'd never recognize are members because they are business people and the socializing and networking possibilities the Council provides them are very valuable.

From everything I can tell, this is the case with Nicholas Rockefeller, who appears to be a lawyer, is unrelated to "the Rockefellers," and we have no idea what his membership in the CFR even was. He may not have even been a full "member," instead he may have been what's known as a "term member," which is something like a five year internship.

These considerations alone should invalidate everything that Aaron Russo says. The only possible scenarios that are really possible here are that he is lying/making all this up, or his "source" Nicholas Rockefeller is lying/making all this up, and Russo is just repeating lies.

But you can take this even a step further. Why would any "elite international banker insider" decide to tell someone like Aaron Russo the secrets of their evil plan to enslave the public? Russo says they met after he ran for governor of Nevada, which means it's post 1998, which means it's post 1991, when Russo made a film called Mad As Hell, which clearly and publicly announced that he was not into authoritarianism and the like. Even if Nicholas Rockefeller had any real information (which he didn't), there is no way that the person he would choose to tell is someone who had made it clear that he was against this sort of thing.

Then, consider the fact that Rockefeller allegedly told Russo this stuff 11 months before 9/11, and Russo did nothing with this information. If he truly believed that he was talking to an "insider" of a group that wanted to enslave the public and they were planning a big terrorist event to facilitate that, he is on really ethically shaky territory for not coming out and telling anyone who could help stop their plans. Obviously, Russo didn't do this because he is making all of it up.

Probably the biggest tell here that this is bullshit is that he didn't tell anyone about this foreknowledge of 9/11 until 2006, when he was trying to promote his new "documentary" America: Freedom To Fascism., when he had over $2 million in tax liens against him.

When you look at the facts, there is no other conclusion that makes sense than that Aaron Russo was a slightly creative conman, and Alex Jones was a willing participant in a public fraud, and a horribly flimsy one at that. But this speaks to how, when you want to believe something, you'll believe it regardless of how clearly not true it is.