Synarchism generally means "joint rule" or "harmonious rule". Beyond this general definition, both synarchism and synarchy have been used to denote rule by a secret elite in Vichy France, Italy, China, Hong Kong and Mexico.[1]


The earliest recorded use of the term synarchy is attributed to Thomas Stackhouse (1677–1752), an English clergyman who used the word in his New History of the Holy Bible from the Beginning of the World to the Establishment of Christianity (published in two folio volumes in 1737). The attribution can be found in the Webster's Dictionary (the American Dictionary of the English Language, published by Noah Webster in 1828). Webster's definition for synarchy is limited entirely to "joint rule or sovereignty". The word is derived from the Greek stems syn meaning "with" or "together" and archy meaning "rule".[2]

The most substantial early use of the word synarchy comes from the writings of Alexandre Saint-Yves d'Alveydre (1842–1909), who used the term in his book La France vraie to describe what he believed was the ideal form of government.[3] In reaction to the emergence of anarchist ideologies and movements, Saint-Yves elaborated a political formula which he believed would lead to a harmonious society. He defended social differentiation and hierarchy with collaboration between social classes, transcending conflict between social and economic groups: synarchy, as opposed to anarchy. Specifically, Saint-Yves envisioned a Federal Europe (as well as all the states it has integrated) with a corporatist government composed of three councils, one for academia, one for the judiciary, and one for commerce.[4]

Rule by a secret elite

Some conspiracy theorists (especially in the French-speaking and Spanish-speaking world) use the word synarchy to describe a shadow government or deep state, a form of government where political power effectively rests with a secret elite, in contrast to an "oligarchy" where the elite is or could be known by the public.[5]

In Vichy France

According to former OSS officer William Langer,[6] some French industrial and banking interests

even before the war, had turned to Nazi Germany and had looked to Hitler as the savior of Europe from Communism. These people were as good fascists as any in Europe. Many of them had extensive and intimate business relations with German interests and were still dreaming of a new system of "synarchy", which meant government of Europe on fascist principles by an international brotherhood of financiers and industrialists.

This theory allegedly originated with the discovery of a document called Pacte Synarchique following the death (May 19, 1941) of Jean Coutrot, former member of Groupe X-Crise, on May 15, 1941. According to this document, a Mouvement Synarchique d'Empire had been founded in 1922, with the aim of abolishing parliamentarianism and replacing it with synarchy. This led to the belief that La Cagoule, a far-right organisation, was the armed branch of French synarchism, and that some important members of the Vichy Regime were synarchists. The Vichy government ordered an investigation, leading to the Rapport Chavin[7] but no evidence for the existence of the Mouvement Synarchiste d'Empire was found. Most of the presumed synarchists were either associated with the Banque Worms or with Groupe X-Crise; they were close to Admiral François Darlan (Vichy prime minister 1941–1942), and this has led to the belief that synarchists had engineered the military defeat of France for the profit of Banque Worms.[8]

This belief system has been dismissed as a "work of a paranoid imagination which wove together the histories of three disparate groups of activists, creating a conspiracy among them where none existed".[9] Most historians suspect that the Pacte Synarchique was a hoax created by some members of La Cagoule to weaken Darlan and his technocrats.[10] Only a few far-left historians defend the idea that the synarchy existed.[11]

Propaganda Due

The Italian Propaganda Due pseudo-Masonic lodge (P2) was a "textbook example" of an attempt to establish a synarchy, as it united politicians, the Catholic Church, and the Mafia-controlled drug economy.[12]

Lyndon LaRouche

Lyndon LaRouche, leader of the LaRouche movement, describes a wide-ranging historical phenomenon, starting with Alexandre Saint-Yves d'Alveydre and the Martinist Order followed by important individuals, organizations, movements and regimes that are alleged to have been synarchist, including the government of Nazi Germany.[13] He claims that during the Great Depression an international coalition of financial institutions, raw materials cartels, and intelligence operatives installed fascist regimes throughout Europe (and tried to do so in Mexico) to maintain world order and prevent the repudiation of international debts.[14] LaRouche identifies the former U.S. Vice President and former PNAC member Dick Cheney as a modern "synarchist", and claims that "synarchists" have "a scheme for replacing regular military forces of nations, by private armies in the footsteps of a privately financed international Waffen-SS-like scheme, a force deployed by leading financier institutions, such as the multi-billions funding by the U.S. Treasury, of Cheney's Halliburton gang."[15]

Other uses


Harvard historian and sinologist John K. Fairbank used the word synarchy in his 1953 book Trade and Diplomacy on the China Coast: The Opening of the Treaty Ports, 1842–1854, and in later writings, to describe the mechanisms of government under the Qing dynasty in China. Fairbank's synarchy is a form of joint rule by co-opting existing Manchu and Han Chinese elites and bringing the foreign powers into the system and legitimizing them through a schedule of rituals and tributes that gave them a stake in the Qing dynasty rule. He believed that the Qing, who were considered outside rulers because of their Manchu origins, developed this strategy out of necessity because they did not have a strong political base in China. Not all historians of China find this persuasive, but it is a respected, mainstream view.[16][17][18]

In 2011, Hu Jintao, proclaimed the "Harmonious Society" as a policy goal of the CCP.

Hong Kong

The term is also used by some political scientists to describe the British colonial government in Hong Kong (1842–1997). Ambrose King, in his 1975 paper Administrative Absorption of Politics in Hong Kong, described colonial Hong Kong's administration as "elite consensual government". In it, he claimed, any coalition of elites or forces capable of challenging the legitimacy of Hong Kong's administrative structure would be co-opted by the existing apparatus through the appointment of leading political activists, business figures and other elites to oversight committees, by granting them British honours, and by bringing them into elite institutions like Hong Kong's horse racing clubs. He called this synarchy, by extension of Fairbank's use of the word.

Mexican synarchism

Synarchy is also the name of the ideology of a political movement in Mexico dating from the 1930s. In Mexico, it was historically a movement of the Roman Catholic extreme right, in some ways akin to fascism, violently opposed to the populist and secularist policies of the revolutionary (PNR, PRM, and PRI) governments that ruled Mexico from 1929 to 2000.[19]

The National Synarchist Union (Unión Nacional Sinarquista, UNS) was founded in May 1937 by a group of Catholic political activists led by José Antonio Urquiza, who was murdered in April 1938, and Salvador Abascal. In 1946, a faction of the movement loyal to deposed leader Manuel Torres Bueno regrouped as the Popular Force Party (Partido Fuerza Popular). Synarchism revived as a political movement in the 1970s through the Mexican Democratic Party (PDM),[20] whose candidate, Ignacio González Gollaz, polled 1.8 percent of the vote at the 1982 presidential election. In 1988 Gumersindo Magaña polled a similar proportion, but the party then suffered a split, and, in 1992, lost its registration as a political party. It was dissolved in 1996.

There are now two organisations, both calling themselves the Unión Nacional Sinarquista, one aligning to Francoist policies,[21] the other following the National Syndicalism of Primo De Rivera. Carlos Abascal, son of Salvador Abascal, was Mexico's Secretary of the Interior during Vicente Fox's presidency. Many sinarquistas are now militant in the National Action Party, PAN, of former presidents Vicente Fox (2000–2006) and Felipe Calderon (2006–2012).


  1. ^ Parekh, Rupal (2008). "WPP'S 'Synarchy' Name Choice Sparks Sneers". Retrieved 2009-01-08.
  2. ^ Synarchy entry on Noah Webster's 1828 American Dictionary web edition
  3. ^ Saint-Yves d'Alveydre, La France vraie (Paris: Calmann Lévy, 1887).
  4. ^ André Nataf, The Wordsworth Dictionary of the Occult (Wordsworth Editions Ltd; 1994).
  5. ^ Patton, Guy; Mackness, Robin (2000). Web of Gold: The Secret History of Sacred Treasures. Sidgwick & Jackson. ISBN 0-283-06344-0.
  6. ^ Our Vichy Gamble, Alfred A Knopf, New York, 1947
  7. ^ Henry Chavin, Rapport confidentiel sur la société secrète polytechnicienne dite Mouvement synarchique d'Empire (MSE) ou Convention synarchique révolutionnaire, 1941
  8. ^ Annie Lacroiz-Riz, Le choix de la défaite: Les élites françaises dans les années 1930, Armand Colin, 2006. ISBN 978-2-200-26784-1
  9. ^ Richard F. Kuisel, The Legend of the Vichy Synarchy (French Historical Studies, Vol. 6, No. 3; Spring, 1970).
  10. ^ Olivier Dard, La synarchie, le mythe du complot permanent, Paris, Perrin, 1998
  11. ^ Reichstadt, Rudy (2012-10-30). "La Synarchie, ce complot permanent qui n'existait pas". Retrieved 2016-10-05.
  12. ^ Greer, John Michael. The Element Encyclopedia of Secret Societies. HarperElement, London, 2006.
  13. ^ LaRouche, Lyndon (2003). "Reviving the Sense of Mission For American Citizens Today". Retrieved 2008-04-06.
  14. ^ Steinberg, Jeffrey (2003). "Synarchism: The Fascist Roots Of the Wolfowitz Cabal". Retrieved 2008-04-06.
  15. ^ LaRouche, Jr, Lyndon H. (2008). "The Empire Versus the Nations: Synarchism, Sport & Iran". Archived from the original on March 24, 2008. Retrieved 2008-04-06.
  16. ^ John King Fairbank, Trade and Diplomacy on the China Coast: The Opening of the Treaty Ports, 1842-1854, (Harvard University Press, 1953), 462–468
  17. ^ "Synarchy under the Treaties", Chinese Thought and Institutions, John K. Fairbank, ed. (University of Chicago Press, 1957), 204–231.
  18. ^ Review of Trade and Diplomacy on the China Coast
  19. ^ Lucas, Jeffrey Kent (2010). The Rightward Drift of Mexico’s Former Revolutionaries: The Case of Antonio Díaz Soto y Gama. Lewiston, NY: Edwin Mellen Press. pp. 207–212. ISBN 978-0-7734-3665-7.
  20. ^ A. Riding, Mexico: Inside the Volcano, Coronet Books, 1989, p. 113
  21. ^ ‹See Tfd›(in Spanish) National Synarchist Union (Website of the right-wing UNS)

Further reading

  • Richard F. Kuisel, "The Legend of the Vichy Synarchy" (French Historical Studies, Vol. 6, No. 3, Duke University Press, Spring 1970), pp. 365–398.
  • ‹See Tfd›(in French) Olivier Dard, La synarchie ou le mythe du complot permanent, Paris: Perrin, 2012.

External links

Alexandre Saint-Yves d'Alveydre

Alexandre Saint-Yves, Marquess of Alveydre (26 March 1842 – 5 February 1909) was a French occultist who adapted the works of Fabre d'Olivet (1767–1825) and, in turn, had his ideas adapted by Gérard Encausse alias Papus. His work on "L'Archéomètre" deeply influenced the young René Guénon. He developed the term Synarchy—the association of everyone with everyone else—into a political philosophy, and his ideas about this type of government proved influential in politics and the occult.


Crypto-politics is the secret support for a political belief. It may refer to:



Synarchism: rule by a secret elite


Falangism in Latin America

Falangism in Latin America has been a feature of political life since the 1930s as movements looked to the national syndicalist clerical fascism of the Spanish state and sought to apply it to other Spanish-speaking countries. From the mid 1930s, the Falange Exterior, effectively an overseas version of the Spanish Falange, was active throughout Latin America in order to drum up support among Hispanic communities. However, the ideas would soon permeate into indigenous political groups. The term "Falangism" should not be applied to the military dictatorships of such figures as Alfredo Stroessner, Augusto Pinochet and Rafael Trujillo because while these individuals often enjoyed close relations to Francisco Franco's Spain, their military nature and frequent lack of commitment to national syndicalism and the corporate state mean that they should not be classed as Falangist (although individuals within each regime may have been predisposed towards the ideology). The phenomenon can be seen in a number of movements both past and present.

The popularity of Falangism in Latin America declined after the defeat of Fascism and the Axis powers in World War II.

Georges Suarez

Georges Suarez (1890–1944) was a French writer, essayist and journalist. Initially a pacifist, then a collaborator (he had been editor of Aujourd'hui, a French newspaper controlled by the Third Reich after the resignation of the writer Henri Jeanson), he was also the biographer of Pétain and other figures of the Troisième République. He was the first journalist sentenced to death during the Épuration légale.

Judeo-Masonic conspiracy theory

The Judeo-Masonic conspiracy is an antisemitic, antimasonic conspiracy theory involving an alleged secret coalition of Jews and Freemasons. These theories were popular on the far-right, particularly in France, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Germany, Russia, and Eastern Europe, with similar allegations still being published.

List of Greek and Latin roots in English/A–G

The following is an alphabetical list of Greek and Latin roots, stems, and prefixes commonly used in the English language from A to G. See also the lists from H to O and from P to Z.

Some of those used in medicine and medical technology are not listed here but instead in the entry for List of medical roots, suffixes and prefixes.

== A ==

== B ==

== C ==

== D ==

== E ==

== F ==

== G ==

Mexican Democratic Party

The Mexican Democratic Party (Spanish: Partido Demócrata Mexicano, PDM) was an ultra-Catholic social conservative political party in Mexico that existed between 1979 and 1997.

National Synarchist Union

The National Synarchist Union (Spanish: Unión Nacional Sinarquista) is a Mexican political organization. It was historically a movement of the Roman Catholic extreme right, in some ways akin to clerical fascism and falangism, implacably opposed to the left wing and secularist policies of the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) and its predecessors that governed Mexico from 1929 to 2000 and 2012 to 2018.


Oligarchy (from Greek ὀλιγαρχία (oligarkhía); from ὀλίγος (olígos), meaning 'few', and ἄρχω (arkho), meaning 'to rule or to command') is a form of power structure in which power rests with a small number of people. These people may be distinguished by nobility, wealth, family ties, education or corporate, religious, political, or military control. Such states are often controlled by families who typically pass their influence from one generation to the next, but inheritance is not a necessary condition for the application of this term.

Throughout history, oligarchies have often been tyrannical, relying on public obedience or oppression to exist. Aristotle pioneered the use of the term as meaning rule by the rich, for which another term commonly used today is plutocracy.

In the early 20th century Robert Michels developed the theory that democracies, as all large organizations, have a tendency to turn into oligarchies. In his "Iron law of oligarchy" he suggests that the necessary division of labor in large organizations leads to the establishment of a ruling class mostly concerned with protecting their own power.

This was already recognized by the Athenians in the fourth century BCE: After the restoration of democracy from oligarchical coups, they used the drawing of lots for selecting government officers to counteract that tendency toward oligarchy in government. They drew lots from large groups of adult volunteers to pick civil servants performing judicial, executive, and administrative functions (archai, boulē, and hēliastai). They even used lots for posts, such as judges and jurors in the political courts (nomothetai), which had the power to overrule the Assembly.

Salvador Abascal

Salvador Abascal (1910–2000) was a Mexican politician and leading exponent of Mexican synarchism. For a time the leader of the National Synarchist Union (UNS), Abascal represented the orthodox Catholic tendency within the movement.

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