This article is from the Conspiracy Theory Literature FAQ, by Xavier Poez firstname.lastname@example.org with numerous contributions by others.
According to various CTL sources, government revolutions are planned
and instigated from behind the scenes by secret societies. The
upheaval allows them to seize power and manipulate the population,
such as implementing martial law, seizing assets of "revolutionaries",
etc. The French revolution is held up as an example of a revolution
that was driven from behind the scenes by Freemasonry lodges. The
Bolshevik revolution is given as another example. The American
Revolution is considered variously by CTL authors to either be in
defiance or in line with the world conspiracy. See [Sutton81] for the
Bolshevik revolution or [Hall79] on America.