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The History of a Lie
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Pages (PDF): 79
Publication Date: 1921
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In 1921, responding to Henry Ford's printing of 500,000 copies of the notorious anti-Semitic forgery, The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, as well as a series of anti-Semitic articles under the title 'The International Jew' in Ford's newspaper 'The Dearborn Independent', Bernstein published this book, History of a Lie, which is a demonstration of The Protocols' spurious origins.
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Is there a Jewish conspiracy against the world or is there a conspiracy against the Jews? What are the so-called “Protocols of the Wise Men of Zion?” Who is “the Russian mystic,” Sergius Nilus, the sponsor of the Protocols? What forces are behind the anti-Jewish propaganda that is international in scope and that seeks at this time to spread all over the world the poison of prejudice and hatred against the Jews, reviving long-exploded mediaeval legends?
Many Americans have asked these questions ever since the publication of “The Cause of the World Unrest,” “The Protocols and World Revolution,” “The Protocols of the Wise Men of Zion,” and the anti-Jewish articles in Henry Ford’s Dearborn Independent.
In 1919 a translation of extracts from what purports to be a book by one Sergius Nilus was published in Germany. During 1920 a translation was published in England under the name of “The Jewish Peril,” and under various titles, in different versions, it was reproduced in the United States, France, Sweden, Denmark, Finland and even Japan. The Japanese edition is in the Russian language. In all these books “the Russian mystic,” Sergius Nilus, is given as the sponsor of a number of secret “documents” by which it is intended to show that the Jews are responsible for all the ills that have already befallen the world and that are still to come.
The method is simple. Was there a revolution in Russia? Blame the Jews. Was there a revolution in Germany? Blame the Jews. Who made the French Revolution? The Jews. Who caused the World War? The Jews. Who profited by the war? The Jews. Is there anywhere an industrial crisis? The Jews are, of course, the cause of it. Has the World War brought forth Bolshevism? The Jews are naturally the fathers of it. First the Jews engineered the war, and then they pulled the strings behind the scenes of the Peace Conference. They secured special privileges at the Peace Table, because, according to the Protocols, they control the gold of the world, the press of the world, the rulers of the world. And if, as a result of the World War, millions of Jews have suffered untold agonies, persecution, starvation, and pogroms, it is no doubt only part of their deep-laid plot to gain control of the world for Zion through poverty and suffering!
Are governments just to the Jews, giving them equal rights? Then it is obvious that Jews are either at the head of such governments or are hidden behind the present rulers. If the Jews cannot exert sufficient influence over the rulers themselves, there are Jewesses in high places, through whom the cause of Zion is served—and all this is done by the Jews with but one aim in view—to dominate the world, to become its autocratic masters, to break down the moral power of Christendom and set up Israel as “the despot” over the peoples of the earth. According to the Protocols, all this is engineered with the aid and through the instrumentality of the Freemasons.
The propagandists everywhere, in Germany, England, France, the Scandinavian countries, Japan and the United States, basing all their arguments on the “Protocols” vouched for by “the Russian mystic” Sergius Nilus, see in the present chaotic conditions the absolute fulfillment of the prophecies outlined by the so-called “Wise Men of Zion” years ago. The propagandists are violent and vicious, foaming at their mouths, appealing to the basest passions, insinuating, accusing, pointing their fingers at “the source of all evil”—at the Jews who constitute but a fraction of one per cent of the world’s population, and who are in Europe to-day, after the close of the World War, more wretched and miserable than ever before,—persecuted, hounded and starved.
What are these mysterious Protocols? How did they come to “the Russian mystic” who revealed them in 1905, and which have now been exhumed from obscurity for the purpose of enlightening the world, and which point to the Jews as the cause of all unrest, chaos and confusion?
Nilus, “the Russian mystic,” is credited with several versions of how he had secured the Protocols, and his stories flatly contradict one another. In 1905 he said that the Protocols were given to him by a prominent Russian conservative whose name he did not mention, and who in turn had received them from an unnamed woman who had stolen them from “one of the most influential leaders of Freemasonry at the close of a secret meeting of the initiated in France.” Then, several years later, Nilus wrote that his friend himself had stolen the Protocols from “the headquarters of the Society of Zion in France.” Several years afterwards, in a new edition of his book, Nilus said that the “Protocols” came from Switzerland and not from France. This time he named his Russian conservative friend, Sukhotin, who had died in the meantime. He added that the Protocols were not Jewish-Masonic but Zionist documents secretly read at the Zionist Congress in Basle in 1897.
Then followed a new edition of the Nilus book bearing the date of 1917. A translation of this edition has recently appeared in this country, containing a brand-new explanation as to how the Protocols were rescued and given to the world. This explanation is taken from the German version published in Charlottenburg. The introduction to that edition says that the Protocols, having been read from day to day at the Basle Congress, were sent as read to Frankfort on the Main. The disclosure of them came through the infidelity of the messenger.
The 1917 edition is published with a prologue and an epilogue, like a drama, which indeed it is, with all the ingredients of melodrama—a villain, a mysterious woman, a Grand Duke, a conspiracy to destroy the world, and a saint—Nilus, who convicts himself in his own writings of falsification in the giving of these various accounts of how the Protocols came into his possession.
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