I have heard it claimed that Lefebvre was indeed a Freemason like his Bishop Lienart. They go further and say the SSPX from the beginning was controlled opposition set up by the Freemasons to take over opposition to Vatican II and neutralize it and make sure it came to nothing so in their mind Fellay was the true successor of Lefebvre and is just doing what he was supposed to do, submit to Vatican II after enough time had passed that it was acceptable to most of the priests and laity who go to SSPX Masses. I believe some more extreme sedevacantists (like home-aloner types) believe this. Don't have any links but I have heard it before (One can hear anything on the internet, though I think the numbers who believe this are small).
Just thinking of an idea doesn't make it a good idea. Forget about likely or unlikely; it has to actually MAKE SENSE. It has to ADD UP.
Ladislaus made the best point above. Why would the bad guys found an organization which does TONS of good, saves TONS of souls, creates 10000X the opposition they started out with, just to "control the opposition"?
But where would that leave the REAL controlled opposition? -- FSSP, ICK, Indult groups, etc. None of them would have had to exist if it weren't for their desire to control the Faithful's desire for Tradition in a "controlled opposition" kind of setting. These groups were created to compete with, and redirect Catholics into, away from the SSPX.
Keep in mind that most sedevacantists and Indulters today also owe their Catholic Faith to +ABL and his work. Think of the widespread example and presence of the SSPX, even up to the present day. How many Indulters and Sedes did the SSPX help generate as well? More people come INTO Tradition than go OUT OF it, thanks to the SSPX.
The number of scattered independent chapels in 1970 is so small, it's not even worth mentioning. Even most independent chapels and sede chapels owe "what they have" to +ABL, his work, his consecrations, his ordinations, his seminaries, etc.If the SSPX was designed as a vehicle to destroy Tradition, then that was the stupidest plan, and the most epic fail EVER.
If every Catholic going UP a step towards pure, uncompromised practice/knowledge of Catholic Tradition earned 1 point
And every Catholic stepping down towards apathy and attendance at the Novus Ordo subtracted 1 point
+ABL would be net positive IN THE MILLIONS.
Yes, the SSPX took over many independent chapels, but guess what? The priests saying Mass at those chapels DIED and the parishioners got continued weekly Mass instead of being Home Alone, joining the Indult, or going back to the Novus Ordo. How does that help the Conciliar "cause"? In almost every case, the Boards of those independent chapels brought in the SSPX because they had no other choice.
It's not like legions of "true" (Sedevacantist, for purposes of this argument) priests were put out of work or put on the sidelines while the SSPX took over everything. No, the SSPX usually replaced "nothing" with SSPX, or "Conciliar" with SSPX. They changed lead into gold, never the other way around.
The SSPV owes EVERYTHING to the SSPX -- its Orders, its training, most of its initial chapels and real estate, etc. The Nine were trained and ordained by +ABL's organization.
But the hypothesis you describe above? Only a bitter, angry, emotional sore loser Sedevacantist could actually believe that. Because even from a Sede perspective ("anything less than sedevacantism is controlled opposition"), +ABL left the Church WAY better off than when he arrived on the scene. If he were a Freemason, why would he work against the Freemasons so vigorously, and bear so much fruit?
But you see, the Pharisees were equally emotional and stupid. Logic didn't stop them from accusing Our Lord from being possessed -- even though He was casting out devils and destroying the devil's kingdom left and right. So I shouldn't be surprised, I guess.