Protocols of the Elders of Zion
An Anti-Semitic Hoax - 3 Articles:

A Hoax of Hate


It is a classic in paranoid, racist literature. Taken by the gullible as the confidential minutes of a Jewish conclave convened in the last years of the nineteenth century, it has been heralded by anti-Semites as proof that Jews are plotting to take over the world. Since its contrivance around the turn of the century by the Russian Okhrana, or Czarist secret police, "The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion" has taken root in bigoted, frightened minds around the world.

The booklet’s twenty-four sections spell out the alleged secret plans of Jewish leaders seeking to attain world domination. They represent the most notorious political forgery of modern times. Although thoroughly discredited, the document is still being used to stir up anti-Semitic hatred.

Origins of the Protocols

Serge Nilus, a little-known Czarist official in Moscow, edited several editions of the Protocols, each with a different account of how he discovered the document. In his 1911 edition Nilus claimed that his source had stolen the document from (a non-existent) Zionist headquarters in France. Other "editors" of the Protocols maintained that the document was read at the First Zionist Congress held in 1897 in Basel, Switzerland.

Note: According to reputable scholars, including Prof. Norman Cohn in his noted book, Warrant for Genocide, the world-control myth was actually lifted from a 19th century French politcal satire in which the alleged plotters weren’t even Jewish.

The Hoax Spreads

Impact of the Bolshevik Revolution

After the Russian Revolution in 1917, frustrated supporters of the ousted Czar rescued the document from obscurity in order to discredit the Bolsheviks. The emigre Czarists portrayed the Revolution as part of a Jewish plot to enslave the world, and pointed to the Protocols as the blueprint of that plan. The scheme of yoking the Protocols to the Bolshevik Revolution not only led to the allegation of a Judeo-Communist conspiracy, but promoted the forgery internationally. In later years, vicious Soviet anti-Semitic propaganda under Stalin and others echoed the conspiracy mythology of the Protocols.

International Publicity

In the 1920’s, two British correspondents, Robert Wilton of the London Times and Victor Marsden of the Morning Post, each of whom had lived in pre-Communist Russia, .promoted the idea of a Jewish conspiracy in Great Britain. Eighteen articles on the subject of a Jewish conspiracy as well as on the "Protocols" themselves were published in the Morning Post. Marsden translated the Protocols into English and in his introduction to the document asserted:

. . . the Jews are carrying it out with steadfast purpose, creating wars and revolutions, . . .to destroy the white Gentile race, that the Jews may seize the power during the resulting chaos and rule with their claimed superior intelligence over the remaining races of the world, as kings over slaves."

A Polish language edition of the Protocols appeared in 1920. The following year the Arabs of Palestine and Syria used the Protocols to stir up resentment against Jewish settlers in Palestine, suggesting that the establishment of a Jewish state in Palestine would further advance the "international Jewish conspiracy." This propaganda tactic persists in the contemporary Middle East; Arabic editions of the Protocols have been widely circulated by official Saudi sources, among others.

American Debut

The Protocols were publicized in America by Boris Brasol, a former Czarist prosecutor. Auto magnate Henry Ford was one of those who responded to Brasol’s conspiratorial fantasies. "The Dearborn Independent," owned by Ford, published an American version of the Protocols between May and September of 1920 in a series called ‘The International Jew: the World’s Foremost Problem." The articles were later republished in book form with half a million copies in circulation in the United States, and were translated into several foreign languages.

By 1927 Ford had repudiated the "International Jew," but hundreds of thousands of people around the world had been encouraged by his initial endorsement to accept the Protocols as genuine.

The Protocols and Nazi Germany

The Protocols served to rationalize anti-Semitism and genocide in Hitler’s Germany. The myth of the Jewish world conspiracy permeated Hitler’s thinking, and he linked Germany’s economic hardship during the 1920s to the secret plot. Once in power Hitler invoked the Protocols to justify anti-Semitic legislation and suppression of all opposition to the Third Reich. For example, the first anti-Semitic measure in April of 1933, a one-day boycott of Jewish stores, was deemed a defense against the "Plan of Basel" (another name for the Protocols).

Contemporary Re-Emergence of the Protocols

Anti-Semites around the globe still actively circulate the Protocols. It has appeared in Japan-where bestsellers by anti-Semite Masami Uno cite them as evidence of a "Jewish conspiracy to dominate the world’-and in Latin America (including Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia and Paraguay). The document is also favored by such U.S. right-wing extremists as the Ku Klux Klan and Aryan Nations. The most common U.S. edition was published by hatemonger Gerald L. K. Smith’s Christian Nationalist Crusade.

The Protocols have become a major source of Arab and Islamic propaganda. Between 1965 and 1967 alone, approximately 50 books on political subjects published in Arabic were either based on the Protocols or quoted from them. In 1980, Hazern Nuseibeh, the Jordanian delegate to the United Nations, spoke about the Protocols as a genuine document. In October of 1987 the Iranian Embassy in Brazil circulated copies of the Protocols, which it said "belongs to the history of the world."

During the 1980s Muslim groups peddled the forgery worldwide. The Muslim Student Associations at Wayne State University in Michigan and at the University of California at Berkeley disseminated the document. American Black Muslim groups have sold it. The Protocols were for sale at an Islamic exhibition in Stockholm and in London’s Park Mosque, and during a 1986 conference sponsored by the Islamic Center of Southern California the Protocols were prominently displayed. Based on a perverse "interpretation" of the Protocols, the Saudi Arabian government blamed Israel for an attack on a synagogue in Istanbul in 1986.

With Glasnost there has also been a reappearance of the Protocols in the Soviet Union. A Soviet book released in 1987 called "On the Class Essence of Zionism" revived insidious canards contained in the Protocols, and made repeated references to Jews engaging in "constant efforts to gain control of the world." And sections of the Protocols have reportedly been read during meetings of the anti-Semitic Russian nationalist movement Pamyat (Memory).

Widespread Condemnation

During the past 60 years impressive authorities have publicly attested to the Protocols’ fraudulence.

  • Hugo Valentin, lecturer in history at the University of Upsala in Sweden, characterized the Protocols in his 1936 study Anti-Semitism, Historically and Critically Examined as "the greatest forgery of the century."

  • Father Pierre Charles, Professor of Theology at the Jesuit College in Louvain, France, stated in a 1938 essay: "It has been proved that these ‘Protocols’ are a fraud, a clumsy plagiarism. . . made for the purpose of rendering the Jews odious..."

  • In 1942, several prominent historians, including Carl Becker of Cornell, Sydney Fay and William Langer of Harvard, and Allan Nevins and Cariton J. H. Hayes of Columbia, introduced Professor John Shelton Curtiss’ ‘An Appraisal of the Protocols of Zion" with their endorsement of his findings as "completely destructive of the historicity of the Protocols and as establishing beyond doubt the fact that they are rank and pernicious forgeries."

  • In 1961 Richard Helms, then Assistant Director of the CIA, stated at a Senate subcommittee hearing: "The Russians have a long tradition in the art of forgery. More than 60 years ago the Czarist intelligence service concocted and peddled a confection called The Protocols of the Elders of Zion."

  • And in August of 1964 a subcommittee of the Senate Judiciary Committee issued a report repudiating the Protocols, to which Senators Thomas J. Dodd and Kenneth B. Keating appended the following: "Every age and country has had its share of fabricated ‘historic’ documents which have been foisted on an unsuspecting public for some malign purpose. . . One of the most notorious and most durable of these is the ‘Protocols of the Elders of Zion.’"


In 1935 a Swiss judge, presiding at a trial of two Swiss National Socialists charged with circulating the Protocols, wrote:

I hope that one day there will come a time when no one will any longer comprehend how in the year 1935 almost a dozen fully sensible and reasonable men could for fourteen days torment their brains before a court of Berne over the authenticity or lack of authenticity of these so-called Protocols . . .that, for all the harm they have already caused and may yet cause, are nothing but ridiculous nonsense.

Unfortunately, the judge’s hope has not yet been fully realized. There are still those anti-Semites and their willing audiences who remain ready to circulate and believe this fantasy of hate.


Protocols of the Elders of Zion

"The only statement I care to make about the Protocols is that they fit in with what is going on. They are sixteen years old, and they have fitted the world situation up to this time. They fit it now." --Henry Ford, 2-17-21, whose newspaper, the Dearborn Independent, cited the Protocols as evidence of an alleged Jewish threat until at least 1927

"To what extent the whole existence of this people is based on a continuous lie is shown incomparably by the Protocols of the Wise Men of Zion...." --Adolph Hitler, Mein Kampf

The Protocols of the Elders of Zion is a forgery made in Russia for the Okhrana (secret police), which blames the Jews for the country's ills. It was first privately printed in 1897 and was made public in 1905. It is copied from a nineteenth century novel by Hermann Goedsche (Biarritz, 1868) and claims that a secret Jewish cabal is plotting to take over the world.

The basic story was composed by Goedsche, a German novelist and anti-Semite who used the pseudonym of Sir John Retcliffe. Goedsche stole the main story from another writer, Maurice Joly, whose Dialogues in Hell Between Machiavelli and Montesquieu (1864) involved a Hellish plot aimed at opposing Napoleon III. Goedsche's original contribution consists mainly of introducing Jews to do the plotting to take over the world.

The Russians used big chunks of a Russian translation of Goedsche's novel, published it separately as the Protocols, and claimed they were authentic. Their purpose was political: to strengthen the czar Nicholas II's position by exposing his opponents as allies with those who were part of a massive conspiracy to take over the world. Thus, the Protocols are a forgery of a plagiarized fiction.

The Protocols were exposed as a forgery by Lucien Wolf in The Jewish Bogey and the Forged Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion (London: Press Committee of the Jewish Board of Deputies, 1920). In 1921, Philip Graves, a correspondent for the London Times, publicized the forgery. Herman Bernstein in The Truth About "The Protocols of Zion": A Complete Exposure (1935) also tried and failed to convince the world of the forgery.

The Protocols were published in 1920 in a Michigan newspaper started by Henry Ford mainly to attack Jews and Communists. Even after they were exposed as a forgery, Ford's paper continued to cite the document. Adolf Hitler later used the Protocols to help justify his attempt to exterminate Jews during World War II.

The Protocols hoax continues to fool people and is still cited by certain individuals and groups as the cause of all their woes. 

further reading

Bronner, Stephen Eric. A Rumor About the Jews : Reflections on Antisemitism and the Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion (St Martins Press,  2000) 

Cohn, Norman Rufus Colin. Warrant for Genocide; the Myth of the Jewish World-conspiracy and the Protocols of the Elders of Zion (New York: Harper & Row, 1967).

Goldberg, Isaac. The so-called "Protocols of the Elders of Zion"; a Definitive Exposure of One of the Most Malicious Lies in History (Girard, Kansas, Haldeman-Julius Publications, 1936).

Segel, B. W. A Lie and a Libel: the History of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, Richard S. Levy, translator & editor, (Lincoln, NE : University of Nebraska Press, 1995).

United States. Congress. Senate. Committee on the Judiciary.
Protocols of the Elders of Zion; a fabricated "historic" document; a report prepared by the Subcommittee to Investigate the Administration of the Internal Security Act and Other Internal Security Laws ... Washington, U.S. Govt. Print. Off., 1964.

Wolf, Lucien. The Myth of the Jewish Menace in World Affairs; or, The Truth About the Forged Protocols of the Elders of Zion (New York, The Macmillan company, 1921).

©copyright 2002,  Robert Todd Carroll



Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion
Intellectual cornerstone of the white power movement, The Protocols of the Meetings of the Learned Elders of Zion serves a crucial role in the personal growth of any heartfelt anti-semite. The book is a long diatribe, exposing the nefarious tactics and goals of a clandestine multinational Jewish cabal that secretly rules the world (in partnership with the Freemasons). It's a must-read for any self-respecting opponent of Zionism. 

The document purports to be the collected notes from an 1897 conference in Switzerland, surreptitiously convened by this shadowy Hebrew organization. So a better translation of the title would be Minutes from the Meetings of the Zionist Chieftains. The book outlines an insidious Jewish plot for global conquest, which involves subverting whole cultures, manipulating world economic markets, instigating wars... pretty much your run-of-the-mill supervillainy. Precisely why we should believe that a group unable to control the distribution of their own meeting minutes would be capable of controlling international affairs, simply defies reason. But who cares? It isn't like The Protocols is going to convert anyone. Its function is to provide a plausible excuse for a bigot to trade in his existing Jewphobia for overt racism. Most screwballs only tackle this monster after they've already plodded their way through The Turner Diaries 
and a few dozen photocopied hate tracts. For this reason, it doesn't matter that The Protocols was and is a pathetic hoax. Once a nutjob decides to believe the book is genuine, nothing you can say will ever change his mind. He wants to believe. 

For the record, The Protocols of the Meetings of the Learned Elders of Zion was proven to be a fake as far back as 1921. That year, a newspaper article in the London Times traced the meat of the book back to a plagiarization of a plagiarization of a work whose original target was Napoleon Bonaparte. The ultimate source, published in 1864, was titled Dialogue aux enfers entre Machiavelli et Montesquieu ("Discussions Between Machiavelli and Montesquieu in Hell"). The book was a satirical commentary on Napoleon's insatiable lust for world domination. No Jews whatsoever 
appear in the story. That work was just plain ripped off in 1868 by German novelist Hermann Goedsche, who took out all of the Napoleon references and replaced him with the Jews. His book, To Sedan, contains a chapter called "The Jewish Cemetery in Prague and the Council of Representatives of the Twelve Tribes of Israel." It describes a centennial meeting between the Devil and the upper echelons of world Jewry. This section was extracted in 1891 and 
repackaged as a nonfiction essay titled "The Rabbi's Speech," which became the primary source for The Protocols. 
The end product was cobbled together in 1895 by an officer of the Russian secret police, Pytor Ivanovich Rachovsky. The book was conceived as propaganda, calculated to rally the Russian citizenry behind the Czar as he took whatever steps would be necessary to fend off the ubiquitous Jewish-Masonic threat. Which is why, even when amongst only each other, the Zionists cannot help but compare themselves disfavorably to their enemy: 
  "The people under our guidance have annihilated the aristocracy, who were their one and only defence and
  foster-mother for the sake of their own advantage, which is inseparably bound up with the well-being of the people"

Or how about: 
  "The aristocracy, which enjoyed by law the labour of the workers, was interested in seeing that the workers were well fed, healthy and strong. We are interested in just the opposite -- in the diminution, the killing off of the goyim"
Printed copies did not surface publicly until 1905, courtesy of freaky publisher Sergei Nilus. Once the book hit the public, it became a sensation. American industrialist Henry Ford adapted an English translation and distributed thousands of copies nationwide. And needless to say, it was a big hit in Nazi Germany. Adolf Hitler was a true believer, and vouched for the book's authenticity in his best-selling autobiography Mein Kampf: 

But despite its age, its thoroughly-debunked origins, and most of all its completely preposterous tale, this lousy fake is still popular the world over. Recently, the book has become a sensation in the Arab world. In 2002, Egyptian television broadcasted a 41-episode miniseries called "Horseman without a Horse." This late-19th-century period piece follows the courageous Arabs who discover The Protocols and, despite Zionist opposition, translate and circulate the book to the rest of the world. Egyptian TV broadcasted the episodes daily throughout the month of Ramadan, thereby capitalizing on a huge captive audience. If you read just one classic work of Jew-baiting propaganda this year, make it The Protocols. 

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