Archive: The Protocols of the Elders of Zion

 Rendering of 'Protocols' Cover

Collected from IGC.ORG

Thousands, perhaps even tens of thousands, of Jews
have died because of this infamous forgery.

Rabbi Joseph Teluskin
Jewish Literacy

  • Commentary on the Protocols — by Dr. Daniel Keren: This commentary, by Dr. Danny Keren, provides an excellent, brief introduction to the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. The bibliography is a good resource for anyone wanting to learn more about the Protocols. (Dr. Keren’s essay comes from the FTP archives of the Nizkor Project.)
  • Russian Court Rules Protocols an Antisemitic Forgery: Also originating from the FTP archives, this Los Angeles Times article is about the 1993 Russian court ruling that the Protocols of the Elders of Zion is an antisemitic forgery — “the first such verdict in the land where the fraud originated 90 years ago.”

Antisemitic Snake Imagery
Antisemitic Snake Imagery

  • Antisemitism — Protocols of the Elders of Zion: This educational Web presentation of the history and current use of the Protocols is from the Holocaust Encyclopedia of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum: “The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, one of the most notorious works of antisemitic propaganda in modern times, is a forgery that claims to describe a secret Jewish conspiracy for world domination. From the early 20th century to the present day, ultranationalist political groups worldwide have reprinted and distributed the fictitious Protocols to defend and perpetuate their antisemitic campaigns. Today’s resurgence of antisemitism in many parts of the world has again propelled the use of the Protocols to spread hate.”
  • Adolf Hitler and the Protocols: This Web page includes Hitler’s comments about the Protocols in his book, Mein Kampf, as well as an excerpt from the testimony of Nazi leader Erich von dem Bach-Zelewsky, an anti-partisan chief on the Russian front, who admitted that there was no Jewish conspiracy, despite the Nazis’ claims.

Protocols of the Elders of Zion' (London - 1978)
The Protocols of the Elders of Zion
London (1978)

  • The Protocols of the Elders of Zion (PDF): Although the Protocols is a proven, antisemitic hoax, I am providing a PDF version for educational purposes only. This PDF document (1.1 MB) is based upon Victor E. Marsden’s translation of Sergei Nilus’s Russian edition. (Marsden’s translation was published originally by The Britons Publishing Society, London, in 1921, but was reissued under other titles.) Although I have grave misgivings about providing this document, I refuse to link to the antisemitic sites that host copies of it. In addition, the PDF file contains, on each page, an embedded, permanent warning stating that the document is a hoax and a forgery — in order to prevent any abusive distribution and use of this disturbing lie. The warnings in the PDF file state, “This document is a proven antisemitic forgery and hoax. Any abuse of this document is strictly forbidden.” In summary, this PDF document contains Dr. Daniel Keren’s commentary on the Protocols; the Los Angeles Timesarticle about the Russian court’s ruling that the Protocols is an antisemitic forgery; and, the Protocols.
  • The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion — Plagiarism at Its Best: The content of this Web page was created in November 2003 by José De La Cruz at the University of California at Santa Barbara in an introductory lecture course on the Holocaust. The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion “helped to spread the disease of antisemitism throughout the world. The Protocols is a document that purports to represent the ideas of a secret society of Jewish elders and was published by Sergei Nilus in Russia in 1905. These ideas are the blueprint for conquering the world. History can show the impact that this document has had on the human race. Adolf Hitler was influenced by the Protocols, which therefore helps explain why Hitler believed that Jews were planning to conquer the world. Consequently, Hitler was responsible for the deaths of millions of Jews throughout Europe…. It has been proven that the Protocols is a mere forgery of a prior document and holds no concrete evidence of an original author. In sum, the Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion is false documentation that has no credibility, and its sole purpose is to spread antisemitism throughout the world.”

Hoax of Hate: The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion

  • A Hoax of Hate — The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion: Presented by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), this introductory overview of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion is an excellent primer about this antisemitic work. A Hoax of Hate contains several sections, from a description of the origin of the Protocols to its contemporary reemergence and widespread condemnation: “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 antisemites as proof that Jews are plotting to take over the world.”
  • Protocols of the Elders of Zion and Antisemitism: Written by Shaul Wallach and hosted by Shamash, this essay presents a brief history of the Protocols and their place in modern Arab nationalism: “It is most disturbing in these days of renascent Nazism in Germany, and of antisemitism in Europe at large, that the Protocols of the Elders of Zion is still being used in academic circles. What people who quote this ‘book’ fail to mention, and apparently fail to realize, is that the Protocols is a forgery redacted by the Russian secret police nearly 100 years ago, even before Zionism existed as a political movement.”
  • The Times of London Exposes a Forgery: In a series of articles in 1921, Philip Graves, the Constantinople reporter for The Times, who took information from the work of Lucien Wolf, exposed the Protocols of the Elders of Zion as a forgery and a hoax. (The history of the Protocols was traced back to the works of German antisemite Hermann Goedsche and French satirist Maurice Joly [Dialogue aux enfers entre Machiavel et Montesquieu, or Dialogues in Hell Between Machiavelli and Montesquieu].) Jared Israel’s Web presentation on The Emperor’s Clothes, The Source of ‘The Protocols of Zion’: An Exposure, provides copies of Philip Graves’s articles in PDF and HTML format.
  • Dialogue aux enfers entre Machiavel et Montesquieu — Project Gutenberg: The 1864 political satire by Maurice Joly, Dialogue aux enfers entre Machiavel et Montesquieu (Dialogues in Hell between Machiavelli and Montesquieu) attacks the political ambitions of Napoleon III by using the device of diabolical plotters in Hell.Dialogue aux enfers entre Machiavel et Montesquieu, available in HTML and plain text format at Project Gutenberg, is one of the plagiarized sources of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. (Joly’s work contains no references to Jews, incidentally.) For those of you who do not read French, Dialogues in Hell between Machiavelli and Montesquieu, was published in English in 2005.
  • Protocols of the Elders of Zion — Virtual Jewish Library: The Virtual Jewish Library (VJL) describes the Protocols as “the most notorious and most successful work of modern antisemitism, [which] draws on popular antisemitic notions which have their roots in medieval Europe from the time of the Crusades. The libels that the Jews used blood of Christian children for the Feast of Passover, poisoned the wells and spread the plague, were pretexts for the wholesale destruction of Jewish communities throughout Europe. Tales were circulated among the masses of secret rabbinical conferences whose aim was to subjugate and exterminate the Christians, and motifs like these are found in early antisemitic literature.” The VJL’s educational presentation contains three sections about the origins, history, use, and distribution of the Protocols.

Sergei Nilus
Sergei Nilus: Publisher of the First
Edition of the Protocols in 1905.

  • Protocols of the Elders of Zion — Beyond the Pale: This section of Beyond the Pale: The History of Jews in Russia focuses on the Protocols of the Elders of Zion: “TheProtocols do not immediately draw much attention when published in Russia in 1905, but this changes after the Revolution. Anti-Bolshevists point to the Protocols to explain the sudden and radical changes in Russia and to justify antisemitic violence during the Civil War. In 1921, evidence is produced that the Protocols are a forgery: The author has plagiarized whole sections from a French publication of 1864 which was directed against Napoleon III and had nothing to do with Jews.”

The Holocaust History Project

  • What Are The Protocols of the Elders of Zion?: This short essay from the Holocaust History Project provides factual evidence that the Protocols is an antisemitic forgery and hoax, as well as demonstrating the tragic influence of the Protocols on Adolf Hitler and the use of the Protocols in Nazi propaganda: “The war that the Nazis waged against the Jews was not just a war of physical annihilation. It was an international war of propaganda to convince the rest of the world of the evils of Judaism. One of the primary weapons that the Third Reich used for this international effort was a forgery known as The Protocols of the Elders of Zion.”

Cover of 'Dismantling the Big Lie: The Protocols of the Elders of Zion'

  • Dismantling the Big Lie — The Protocols of the Elders of Zion: Written by Steven L. Jacobs and Mark Weitzman, and published by KTAV Publishing House,Dismantling the Big Lie: The Protocols of the Elders of Zion is “the first work that refutes, in a detailed and specific fashion, the claims made in the classic antisemitic forgery, The Protocols of the Elders of Zion. While other attempts have been made to explore the history or context of the Protocols, this work sets out the themes and claims of each of the 24 protocols, and then debunks them, protocol by protocol. Since the Protocols claim to be exposing a hidden conspiracy rooted in Jewish tradition, the refutation is accomplished by showing how authentic Jewish texts and authorities have actually addressed these issues. The positions cited are drawn from the range of Jewish history and traditions. There are also chapters that explore current use of The Protocols of the Elders of Zion by modern extremists, as well as the new life given to them by the Internet. In addition to the introduction, there is also a thematic index.”

Hitler used the Protocols as a manual
in his war to exterminate the Jews.

Nora Levin
The Holocaust: The Destruction
of European Jewry

Collected from

What are “The Protocols
of the Elders of Zion”?

The war that the Nazis waged against the Jews was not just a war of physical annihilation. It was an international war of propaganda to convince the rest of the world of the evils of Judaism. One of the primary weapons that the Third Reich used for this international effort was a forgery known as “The Protocols of the Elders of Zion.” It is claimed that the Protocols are the minutes of a meeting of Jewish leaders at the first Zionist Congress in Basel, Switzerland, in 1897, in which Jews plotted to take over the world. The Protocols are a complete forgery most of which was copied from an obscure satire on Napoleon III by Maurice Joly called “Dialogue aux Enfers entre Montesquieu et Machiavel” (“A Dialogue in Hell Between Montesquieu and Machiavelli”).

The story of the Protocols starts with a chapter in a novel called “Biarritz” by a German bureaucrat named Hermann Goedesche writing under the pseudonym “Sir John Retcliffe” (sometimes altered to “Sir John Readcliffe” in later literature). Goedesche was an anti-Semite in the middle of the 19th century who believed in a conspiracy between Jews and Masons to dominate the world. One chapter of the novel, titled “In the Jewish Cemetery in Prague” relates a speech by a Rabbi named Eichhorn or Reichhorn which reveals a Jewish plot against European civilization. Although it was part of a novel, it was printed separately as an anti-Semitic pamphlet in Russia as early as 1872. It was widely circulated as a truthful account for the rest of the 19th century and represents the precursor of the Protocols. It is still occasionally attached to current editions of the Protocols.

The Protocols were actually written in Paris sometime between 1895 and 1899 by an agent of the Russian secret police Pytor Ivanovich Rachovsky, who is known to have forged other documents for the various intrigues in which he took part. While the Protocols are overtly anti-Semitic it is believed that the Russian minister of finance, Sergei Witte, was also a target of the Protocols. At the time Witte was the leader of the movement to modernize Russia and limit the influence of the old Russian aristocracy. The Protocols attempt to discredit Witte’s reforms of the Russian economy by linking Witte’s program to a Jewish plot to destroy western civilization.

The Protocols, as they are usually published, are divided into twenty-six separate chapters each of which are a lecture on how to subvert western civilization, although some versions, including the first in Englsh, did not have this division. The “program” set forth in the Protocols is vague and generalized. The Protocols advise, for example: “Therefore in governing the world the best results are obtained by violence and intimidation, and not by academic discussions.” (Protocol 1). Some are just silly. One Protocol (23) advocates making people unhappy by passing laws prohibiting drunkenness. The Protocols are vigorously anti-democratic as well. Protocol 25 advises: “Several members of the seed of David will prepare Kings and their successors, who will be elected not by right of inheritance but by their own capabilities. These successors will be initiated in our secret political mysteries and plans of governing, taking great care that no one else should acquire them.”

The parochial political controversies that sparked the writing of the Protocols was soon forgotten but the anti-Semitism remained. The Protocols were first published in full by Sergei Nilus, another agent of the Russian secret police, in 1905. Nilus, who might have been one of the authors of the Protocols, became their main promoter; he circulated several editions of the Protocols in Russia as part of an campaign of anti-Semitism. While the early publications of the Protocols were in Russia, it was spread to the rest of Europe by Russian expatriates after the fall of the Tsars in 1917, where they claimed that it provided proof that the Jews were behind the Russian Revolution. Another expatriate Russian, Boris Brasol, brought it to the United States around 1920 where it became the core of Henry Ford’s anti-Semitic program. By the time Nilus died in 1930, Europe had been saturated by millions of copies of the Protocols. It had also been exposed as a forgery.

The Protocols reached Germany sometime around 1918. One of those who brought them to Germany was Alfred Rosenberg, an Estonian of German heritage who first encountered the Protocols when a student in Moscow. According to Rosenberg a stranger entered his room, placed the book on the table and silently departed. Whether his tale was true or not, Rosenberg soon became an anti-Semite convinced of the authenticity of the Protocols. When he fled Raval (now Talinn) in the civil war that followed the Russian Revolution, he took the Protocols with him.

In Germany Rosenberg soon became involved with a mystical group that was a precursor to National Socialism known as the Thule Society where he frequently lectured about the Protocols. Rosenberg was there to explain the mysteries of the Protocols when Adolf Hitler appeared on the stage of right-wing politics in 1921. Rosenberg was at Hitler’s side during the attempted putsch in Munich in 1923. By then the Protocols had become one of the central themes of Nazi thought. The Protocols were the basis for much of Mein Kampf, and Rosenberg’s book The Myth of the 20th Century became the most important exposition of Nazi philosophy.

It was already known that the Protocols were a forgery when Hitler received his first copy. The exposure of the forgery began as soon as the

 London Times headline

London Times,
August 16, 1921

Protocols began to appear in western Europe but the coup de grâce occurred in 1921, one year after the Protocols were first published in Great Britain. In August, 1921, the Times of London printed a devastating exposure of the forgery by printing extracts from the Protocols side-by-side with the passages from Joly’s book that had been plagiarized. From that point, the Protocols were dismissed by thinking people everywhere. It did not, however, stop the wide circulation of the Protocols by Russian expatriates and later by Hitler. Even the decision by a Swiss court after consultation with three experts (one appointed by the publisher) in May, 1935 did not affect the distribution of the Protocols by the Third Reich.

The anti-Semitic agitation of the Nazis was international in scope. The Protocols was the chief weapons used in the propaganda campaign against the Jews. Under the direction of Joseph Goebbels, the Protocols were translated into many other languages and the world was flooded with cheap editions of the forged document. With Henry Ford’s “The International Jew” (also based in large part on the Protocols), it became the staple text for the anti-Semitism exported by the Nazis around the world. In Mein Kampf, Hitler described the importance of the Protocols to his program of anti-Semitism:

… 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, so infinitely hated by the Jews. They are based on a forgery, the Frankfurter Zeitung moans and screams once every week: the best proof that they are authentic. What many Jews may do unconsciously is here consciously exposed. And that is what matters. It is completely indifferent from what Jewish brain these disclosures originate; the important thing is that with positively terrifying certainty they reveal the nature and activity of the Jewish people and expose their inner contexts as well as their ultimate final aims. The best criticism applied to them, however, is reality. Anyone who examines the historical development of the last hundred years from the standpoint of this book will at once understand the screaming of the Jewish press. For once this book has become the common property of a people, the Jewish menace may be considered as broken.

Hitler, Adolf. Mein Kampf (München: Zentralverlag der N.S.D.A.P. Franz Eher Nachf., G.M.B.H., 1935). Volume 1; Chapter XI: Nation and Race (pp. 307-308; Mannheim translation).

Wie sehr das ganze Dasein dieses Volkes auf einer fortlaufenden Lüge beruht, wird in unvergleichlicher Art in den von den Juden so unendlich gehaßten “Protokollen der Weisen von Zion” gezeigt. Sie sollen auf einer Fälschung beruhen, stöhnt immer wieder die “Frankfurter Zeitung” in die Welt hinaus: der beste Beweis dafür, daß sie echt sind. Was viele Juden unbewußt tun mögen, ist hier bewußt klargelegt. Darauf aber kommt es an. Es ist ganz gleich, aus wessen Judenkopf diese Enthüllungen stammen, maßgebend aber ist, daß sie mit geradezu grauenerregender Sicherheit das Wesen und die Tätigkeit des Judenvolkes aufdecken und in ihren inneren Zusammenhängen sowie den letzten Schlußzielen darlegen. Die beste Kritik an ihnen jedoch bildet die Wirklichkeit. Wer die geschichtliche Entwicklung der letzten hundert Jahre von den Gesichtspunkten dieses Buches aus überprüft, dem wird auch das Geschrei der jüdischen Presse sofort verständlich werden. Denn wenn dieses Buch erst einmal Gemeingut eines Volkes geworden sein wird, darf die jüdische Gefahr auch schon als gebrochen gelten.

Aus Mein Kampf: Die Protokolle der Weisen von Zion. Aus 11. Kapitel: Volk und Rasse – Erster Band: Eine Abrechnung.

Even today the Protocols of the Elders of Zion is one of the principal propaganda weapons of anti-Semitism. In the United States it continues to be circulated by the Christian Identity movement, the Ku Klux Klan and neo-Nazi groups. It is still distributed by those who deny the Holocaust as well. The Institute for Historical Review – the intellectual center of the movement denying the Holocaust – continues to sell the Protocols and it is still used to attack Jews. Ernst Zündel, who states openly that he is an admirer of Hitler and claims the Holocaust never happened, still repeats the lies of the Protocols:

Could it be that word is out that, according to the Protocols of the Wise Elders of Zion, the New World Order is soon going to be locked in place, with Israel the hub of power and the United States its dedicated slave? english/zgrams/zg1997/zg9709/970912.html

Nor is the United States the only country and English the only language where the Protocols are still being distributed as fact. The Protocols are available in virtually every European country. Translated into Arabic, the Protocols have become a standard text for anti-Semitism in the Middle East. Translated into Japanese, millions of the copies of the Protocols are still being distributed around the Pacific Rim.

“The Protocols of the Elders of Zion” has become a lie that will not die, no matter how often it is exposed as a forgery.

Where to start your research

Norman Cohn, “Warrant for Genocide” Serif Press (1967, 1996) is the most complete history of the Protocols.

Albert Lee, “Henry Ford and the Jews” Stein & Day (1980) explains how they were used by Henry Ford and distributed throughout the world.

Michael Barkan, “Religion and the Racist Right” University of North Carolina Press (Revised Edition; 1997) explains how the Protocols influenced the Christian Identity movement.

D. Sklar, “The Nazis and the Occult” Dorset Press (1977, 1989) explains the connection between the Thule Society and Nazi thought.

Wiki for The Protocols of the Elders of Zion.

Wiki for Der Judenstaat (one of the sources of the Protocols’ text)

Modern Anti-Semitic Use of The Protocols of the Elders of Zion

The Following are Links of Contemporary Believers, reading the Protocols as if it were a Factual Document.


The Protocols of the Elders of Zion as read by LordLindsey (50,000+ views with at least one re-upload: recorded after 2011, as evidenced by his regular references to the Occupy Movement, 1%/99% and other economic conspiracist rhetoric interspersed within the recording.): Link.

Synagogue of Satan by AC Hitchcock (500,000+ views and at least one re-upload): Link.

Father of Lies (93,000+ views on YouTube: an African American Anti-Semitic, Anti-Masonic, Anti-Illuminati [lumped together] sermon/presentation in audio with suggestive video backdrop suggesting that Jews caused African American Slavery and Africans are the true Israelites. The use of Enochian Fallen Angels breeding with man to explain their racial form of Christian Fundamentalism. They do, in fact, support Jewish conversion to Christianity, but follow the Protocols as an explanation of their views): Link.

Charles Giuliani argues the ‘legitimacy of the document’ on online radio program and promotes the conspiracist view: Link.

David Duke’s illustrated Protocols: Link.

Jeff Rense interviews David Duke about the Protocols and how the Jews are presumed to cause all of the world’s problems (Duke also says that the Protocols was an Allegory, but that the Jewish Talmud contain texts explicitly defaming Jesus; stating that “the Talmud contains a passage where Jesus is boiling in excrement for eternity): Link.


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