Statements made by Yuval Noah Harari have been taken out of context and misrepresented as statements from the WEF.
by Christian Haag and Matthew Ross
According to an article on the website Newspunch, the World Economic Forum (WEF) has said that God is dead, that Jesus is "fake news," that WEF leaders have gained divine powers to rule over humanity, and that they will turn humans into gods. The article's image displays a supposed tweet by the WEF that says, "Jesus is the original fake news" and links to videos from The People's Voice, a channel hosted by one of the founders of Newspunch, Sean Adl-Tabatabai, that makes similar claims. The article and video also claim that Yuval Noah Harari is Klaus Schwab's "right-hand man" and that he is responsible for the broader agenda of the WEF. The video has 758,000 views on Rumble.
The videos and the claims in Newspunch conflate statements made by the author Yuval Noah Harari in his book Homo Deus, as well as several live talks he gave, with the goals and agenda of Klaus Schwab and the entire World Economic Forum.
We found no evidence that Klaus Schwab or the WEF have said that "God is dead," "Jesus is fake news," or that WEF leaders have gained "divine powers to rule over humanity."
According to the video, the supposed tweet "Jesus is the original fake news" was posted on November 22, 2022, at 11:23 p.m. However, we could find no record of the tweet on either the World Economic Forum's Twitter account or the Internet Archives. The screenshot is fake.
On the other hand, Harari has said that God is dead in his book Homo Deus and interviews. In the chapter Electricity, Genetics and radical Islamism, Harari discusses alternatives to liberalism. In a section of his book on religious fundamentalism, Harari's full quote reads, "More than a century after Nietzsche pronounced Him dead, God seems to be making a comeback. But this is a mirage. God is dead–it's just taking a while to get rid of the body." As such, Harari is re-quoting Nietzsche's original statement from 1882.
The statement "Jesus is fake news" comes from a talk given by Harari at Google in 2018. In the talk, Harari says religions have been used to organize people on a large scale with stories that unite people within a faith community. However, such a story often includes articles of faith that members of other religions would perceive as fictional. For instance, Harari says that in Judaism, Jesus' resurrection would be "fake news." This quote refers to how religions perceive each other rather than Harari's beliefs about which religion is correct.
The claim "We have gained divine powers to rule over humanity" comes from a section in Harari's book Homo Deus. In the book, Harari discusses advances in biological engineering, the construction of cyborgs, and the hypothetical creation of non-organic beings which could change humanity. Through this, humans could attain god-like powers to treat diseases, become stronger, and live longer. Although technology would spur these changes, they would appear like "divine powers" to less-advanced societies, Harari argues. Furthermore, Harari is speaking about humanity in general and does not claim that these potential technologies would be hoarded exclusively by the WEF.
As Logically and other outlets have covered before, Harari's statements are frequently used in conspiracy narratives to misrepresent the views of the entire World Economic Forum. Yuval Noah Harari has previously been baselessly called Klaus Schwab's "right-hand man" or "top advisor." In many cases, things Harari merely describes or even condemns are repurposed to imply that he and the WEF are endorsing them, such as the possibility of "organism hacking."
Harari has given talks to the WEF before. However, in a statement to the AP, a WEF spokesperson said that Harari is not an advisor to either Schwab or the WEF. Although it has some individuals who serve either in a management or advisory capacity, businesses and other enterprises are members of the WEF, not individuals.
These claims are part of the broader Great Reset conspiracy theory, which has its origins in a set of statements and proposals called "The Great Reset" made by the World Economic Forum toward the start of the COVID-19 pandemic about ways in which the world economy could be changed in more sustainable ways. Although the proposals are non-binding and non-specific, conspiracy theorists interpret them as a plan for authoritarian control.
The screenshot of the WEF's tweet saying "Jesus is fake news" is fake. The other statements were all made by the author Yuval Noah Harari in his published works or public talks. Harari is not a representative of the WEF, and does not serve in an advisory capacity to either the global economic body or its director Klaus Schwab. We mark this claim as false.