English translation of the 1999 L’Express article The Origin of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion by Eric Conan

This is an English translation of a French article “The Origin of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion” by Eric Conan, which was published in L’Express on November 11, 1999. It explains how the Protocols were really created. This translation was made by Microsoft Translator and may not be completely accurate. A few bits do not make sense but you get the idea.

The Origin of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion

“The secrets of anti-Semitic manipulation”

Eric Conan

The 16/11/1999 Express

The Protocols of the Sages of Zion, the famous forgery against the Jews, were written in France at the   beginning of the century by a Russian schemer. The author is finally identified. The ravages continue.

It is the most famous — and the most tragic — of the falsifications of the twentieth century, the basis of  the anti-Semitic myth of the “World Jewish conspiracy.” The text of the Protocols of the Sages of Zion has  just delivered its last mystery: A Russian historian, Mikhail Lépekhine, has established the identity of its  author, thanks to the Soviet archives. It makes it possible to understand why it took so long to know this  epilogue: The Forger, Mathieu Golovinski, who carried out his work in Paris, at the beginning of the century, for the representative in France of the Tsar’s political police, had become, after The Russian Revolution of 1917, a notable Bolshevik… The discovery of this sinister historical nose makes it possible to fill the last shortcomings in the history of a sham which, after having wreaked havoc in Europe, is experiencing a still flourishing destiny in many parts of the world.

A historian of Russian literature, Mikhail Lépekhine is one of the best connoisseurs of the “publicists” of the late nineteenth century, these characters both writers, journalists and political essayists who intervene in the form of libelles, articles And books in the convulsions of the Russian public life of the time. His speciality: The pivotal years of the reign of Alexander III (1881-1894) and the beginning of the reign of Nicholas II (1894-1902), a turbulent period preceding the revolutionary turbulence. Former curator of the Archives of the Institute of Russian literature and researcher in print history of the Library of the Russian Academy of Sciences in St. Petersburg, Mikhail Lépekhine studies the life and work of all these individuals, including those Second and third order, mostly gathered in the monumental Russian Biographical dictionary in 33 volumes, of which he runs the edition.

It is by working on one of these publicists, Mathieu Golovinski, son of aristocrat, lawyer disbarred for embezzlement, journalist to scandal and intrigued in the political circles of St. Petersburg and Paris, which he plunged into The history of the protocols, which until then did not constitute a matter of concern to him. Stripping all the holdings concerning Golovinski, he found in French archives preserved in Moscow for eighty years the trace of his role in the manufacture of the famous faux. Mikhail Lépekhine quickly measures the importance of his discovery by taking stock of the current knowledge on the history of the Protocols, of which a French researcher, Pïerre-André Taguieff, recently published the most complète1 synthesis. He has just found the missing link — the identity of the forger — at the crossroads of two long stories: that of a little upstart whose “work” was only a brief moment in his restless and troubled life and that of a false villain for which Mathieu Golovinski was not Q That running technical.

The Protocols of the Sages of Zion, sometimes overtitled Jewish Programme of conquest of the world, are a text known in two close versions, published in Russia, first partially, in 1903, in the newspaper Znamya, then, in a full version, in 1905 and in 1906. They present themselves as the detailed account of some twenty secret Judeo-Masonic meetings in which a “Sage of Zion” is addressed to the leaders of the Jewish people in order to expose them to a plan of domination of mankind. Their goal: to become “Masters of the World” after the destruction of monarchies and Christian civilization. This plan Machiavellian plans to use violence, cunning, wars, revolutions, industrial modernization and capitalism to put down the existing order, on the ruins of which the Jewish power will settle.

This “secret document” was quickly questioned by Count Alexandre du Chayla, a French aristocrat converted to Orthodoxy, who later fought in the White Army against the Bolsheviks: he had met in 1909 the first publisher of Protocols, Serge Nilus, Pope of Russian mysticism, who had shown him the “original”. Not at all convinced, the Earl will later tell he had the impression of meeting an enlightened for whom the question of the authenticity of the text mattered little. “Let’s say the protocols are wrong,” said Nilus. But can God not use it to discover the iniquity of what is being prepared? Can God, in consideration of our faith, not turn dog bones into miraculous relics? So he can put in a mouth of falsehood the Annunciation of truth! »

The protocols are in fact “launched” in the general public by the London Times of May 8, 1920, including an editorial entitled “The Jewish Peril, a disturbing pamphlet.” Enquiry “refers to this” singular little book “, to which it seems to give credit. The Times catch up a year later, in August 1921, by measuring “the end of the Protocols” and publishing the proof of the forgery. The correspondent in Istanbul of the British daily had been contacted by a white Russian refugee in Turkey who, visibly well informed, had revealed to him that the text of the protocols was the decal of a French pamphlet against Napoleon III. A quick check had proved the falsification: The protocols actually took over the text of the Dialogue in the underworld between Machiavelli and Montesquieu, published in Brussels in 1864 by Maurice Joly, a lawyer Antibonapartiste who wanted to show that The emperor and his relatives were plotting to seize all the powers of the French society. Using this forgotten text that had earned Maurice Joly two years in prison, the forger of the protocols had replaced “France” with “the World” and “Napoleon III” with “the Jews”. The deception, coarse, broke out by simple line-to-line comparison of the two texts. The forgery was unveiled, but the mystery of its origin remained. It was simply known that the original text was written in French and it was assumed that it could have been manufactured at the very beginning of the century in Paris, in the circles of the Russian political police.

It was in the archives of French Henri Bint, a Russian service agent in Paris for thirty-seven years, that Mikhail Lépekhine verified that Mathieu Golovinski was the mysterious author of the forgery. Receiving in 1917 in Paris Serge Svatikov, the envoy of the new Russian government of Kerenski charged with dismantling the Tsarist secret services and “debriefing” — and sometimes returning — his agents, Henri Bint explained to him that Mathieu Golovinski was the author of the Protocols and that he himself was in particular responsible for the compensation of the forger. The last ambassador of the Tsar, Basile Maklakov, having left with the archives of the embassy, which he will give in 1925 to the American Foundation Hoover, Serge Svatikov buys to Henri Bint his personal archives. After breaking with the new Bolsheviks leaders, Svatikov put the Bint archives in Prague, in the private fund of the “Russian Archives abroad”. In 1946, the Soviets put their hands on this fund which joined the state Archives of the Russian Federation in Moscow.

The secret of Golovinski is thus preserved until the collapse of communism and the general opening of the archives, in 1992. Since the anti-Semitic forger had indeed become “companion of the Road” of the Bolsheviks from 1917, the Soviets had no desire to reveal this little ruse of history, which still seems troublesome today, since the discovery of Mikhail Lépekhine, Revealed last August by Victor Loupan in Le Figaro Magazine, did not arouse any interest in the great French press.

Thanks to his detailed knowledge of the itinerary of the author of the protocols, Mikhail Lépekhine can now, at the end of five years of research, fully retrace the circumstances and the objectives of the fabrication of this forgery. Born on 6 March 1865 in Ivachevka, in the region of Simbirsk, Mathieu Golovinski is from an aristocratic family descending from a crusader, Count Henri de Mons. A well-born but turbulent family: Mathieu Golovinski’s great-uncle was sentenced to 20 years of exile in Siberia for his participation in the Antimonarchist conspiracy of the Decembrists and Basil, his father, close to Dostoyevsky, was sentenced to death and pardoned at the same Time that the writer, after a mock execution, “says Mikhail Lépekhine. Released after several years as a soldier in the Caucasus War, Basile died depressed in 1875, leaving Little Mathieu Golovinski in the hands of his mother and a French governess who made it an excellent francophone. Student in casual law, but skillful and without great scruples, Mathieu Golovinski seems very early gifted for intrigue. The young upstart manages to get in touch with Count Vorontsov-Dahkov, close to the Tsar and minister at the court: convinced of the threat of a conspiracy, the count founded, after the assassination of Alexander II, the Holy Brotherhood, secret organization Responding to terror by terror and manipulation. The Holy Brotherhood was indeed one of the first “forgeries” of false documents, a manufacturer of false revolutionary newspapers.

Introducing Conversations

Appointed official in St. Petersburg, Mathieu Golovinski worked in the years 1890 for Constantin Pobiedonostsev, Attorney General of the Holy Synod and one of the inspirers of Alexander III. A militant Christian, the orthodox dignitary set up a programme of evangelisation of a pagan Volga people, the Tchauvaches, in the company of the uncle of Mathieu Golovinski and Ilya Ulyanov, father of the future Lenin. “Constantine Pobiedonostsev is obsessed with the invasion of the State apparatus by Jews, which he considers” smarter and more talented “than the Russians, explains Mikhail Lépekhine. It is through his intermediary that Mathieu Golovinski works for the press department, a pharmacy responsible for influencing newspapers by giving to their directors articles ready to publish, even by obliging them to pay some of its agents, who, Half-snitches, half-journalists, censor from the inside the press and watch his “line”. The head of this press department, Michel Soloviev, an anti-Semitic fanatic, makes Golovinski his “second editor”. «Golovinski has the pen very easy. He is gifted and takes over five years this blurred function with ease, in dilettante gifted and in pleasure, says Mikhail Lépekhine, who read many of his texts at the time.

This pleasant pleasure escapes abruptly from Mathieu Golovinski: Soloviev dies and Pobiedonostsev no longer has the same grip on the new tsar, Nicolas II, who seems eager to create a different style. The men of the Shadows change and Golovinski is treated publicly as “snitch” by Maxime Gorky. He went into exile in Paris, a city he had been dating for a long time, and found the same type of “work” with an elder of the Holy Brotherhood, Pierre Rachkovsky, who led the Russian political police services in France. In particular, Golovinski is responsible for influencing French journalists in their treatment of the Tsar’s policy. He is able to write articles that pass in major Parisian dailies under the signature of French journalists! Says Mikhail Lépekhine. Still active, he complements these activities by publishing in 1906, to the Garnier editions, an English-Russian dictionary plagiarized from a Russian edition, undertakes medical studies for three years and enjoys an affluent life in Paris, thanks to a pension that continues To pay her mother, while concealing this hyperactivity under the quiet appearances of a commuter residing in Bourg-la-Reine until 1910.

An intriguing in the service of the powerful

The counter-revolutionary propaganda for French political elites is one of the main activities of Rachkovsky, which created a Franco-Russian league in Paris: Relations between the two countries are then a key issue and The elder of the Holy Brotherhood retains the obsessions of the ultra-reactionary Orthodox clan, who wants to convince the tsar that a Judeo-Masonic conspiracy lies behind the liberal and reformist current. However, Nicolas II, less permeable to this theme than his predecessors, is concerned about Western criticism of Russian policy of discrimination against Jews. Rachkovsky therefore had the idea of a manoeuvre designed to persuade the Tsar of the merits of anti-Semitic prevention. Under the influence of Ivan Goremykin, former minister of the Interior in disgrace, he wanted the tsar to get rid of Count Sergei Witte, leader of the modernizers in the government. It is therefore a question of producing a decisive ‘ proof ‘ of what Russia’s industrial and financial modernization is the expression of a Jewish plan of domination.

Hence the command of Rachkovsky to Golovinski of a scythe — one among many, for this gifted polygraph — originally intended for a single reader: the Tsar. Indeed, Rachkovsky seems to have imagined a skilful manoeuvre: knowing that the mystic Serge Nilus has a chance to become the new confessor of the Tsar, he thinks to give to Nicolas II his false anti-Semitic manuscript by this trusted intermediary. According to Mikhail Lépekhine, it was in Paris, at the end of 1900 or in 1901, that Golovinski wrote the protocols using Maurice Joly’s pamphlet against Napoleon III. But the stratagem falls into the water: Serge Nilus is not named Confessor. However, he kept the text, which he published in 1905 as an annex to one of his works, the great in the small. The Antichrist is an imminent political possibility, which is handed over to the Tsar and the Empress. This book explains that, since the French Revolution, an apocalyptic process has begun, which may lead to the coming of the Antichrist.

“The writing of the protocols is only a moment in the existence of Golovinski,” says Mikhail Lépekhine. I do not think he has realized the scope of his work. Thus, during their elaboration, he talks about it and reads passages to a friend of her mother, Princess Catherine Radziwill. A refugee in the United States, she was the only one in the 1920s to designate, in a Jewish journal, Golovinski as the author of the Protocols. But she has no evidence and her testimony, with many errors, is not withheld. The same is the case at a trial held in Bern, in 1934, at the request of the Federation of Jewish Communities of Switzerland, which wanted to establish the falsity of the Protocols, then broadcast by the Swiss Nazis: the name Golovinski is mentioned by Serge Svatikov Q EU by investigative journalist Vladimir Bourtsev, both witnesses cited by the complainants, adds Pierre-André Taguieff.

Mathieu Golovinski continues his intriguing life in the service of the mighty of the day who want to use his talents well. Back in Russia, he worked for Ivan Tcheglovitov, Minister of Justice, then for Alexandre Protopopov, who became Minister of the Interior in 1916. In 1914, he also published a propaganda book, the Black Book of German atrocities, signed “Dr. Golovinski”. Because he now passes as a doctor, without having obtained any diploma after his studies in Paris.

The “proof” of the “Jewish conspiracy”

The fall of tsarism could not undermine such a good swimmer in murky water. He finds himself from 1917… Deputy of a Soviet of Petrograd (St. Petersburg): Dr. Golovinski is celebrated by the revolutionaries as the first of the few Russian doctors to have approved the Bolshevik coup d’etat! The career of this “red doctor” is, therefore, dazzling: member of the People’s Commissariat for health and of the military-sanitary college, he is an influential character of the new regime in his health policy. He participates in the launch of the Pioneers (members of a youth regimentation organization), advises Trotsky for the establishment of military education and founded in 1918 the Institute of Physical Culture, future nursery of Champions Soviet Union, which he takes the lead. Becoming notable, he did not take advantage of his new power for long and died in 1920, at the precise moment when his protocols began to be very successful thanks to their English, French and German translations.

The First World War, the Russian Revolution and chaos in Germany seem to confirm the prophecies of false anti-Semitic: The dramatic history in which Europe and Russia are plunged have an effect of authenticating this text, including a copy is found in the room of the Empress after the massacre of the family of Nicholas II — index, for some white anti-Semitic Russians, that it is indeed a “Judeo-Bolshevik” crime… The proof of falsification brought by the Times does not undermine the credit of the Protocols, which continue to be presented in Europe as the “proof” of the “international Jewish conspiracy”, throughout the 1930s. The forgery is the subject of many editions, which are no longer confined to anti-Semitic organs. Thus, in France, it is a recognized publishing house, Grasset, which publishes them, from 1921, with numerous reprints until 1938. In the United States, it is the car manufacturer Henry Ford, who, believing in their authenticity, diffuses them through his press.

Nazi propaganda exploits and disseminates protocols. In 1923, Alfred Rosenberg gave them a study and, in Mein Kampf (1925), Adolf Hitler wrote that “The Protocols of the Sages of Zion — which the Jews formally deny with such violence — showed incomparably how much the whole existence of this People is based on a permanent lie, “adding that it is clearly stated” what many Jews can do unconsciously “. As soon as they came to power in 1933, the Nazi officials gave their propaganda office the task of disseminating the protocols and defending the thesis of their authenticity.

After the end of the Second World War, the Protocols, now banned in most European countries, began a second career, following the creation of the State of Israel. A first edition in Arabic appears in Cairo in 1951 *. followed by many others, in all languages, including French, in most Muslim countries. The protocols are then used to denounce a “Zionist conspiracy”. “According to this reuse, if the proud and valuable Arabs could be defeated by the cowardly and deceitful Jews, it is because of an international conspiracy of occult forces organized by the Zionists,” explains Pierre-André Taguieff. “Protocols are a model of the world’s most unique anti-Jewish vision of modernity, a vision centered on the theme of planetary domination.” The public reference to the protocols is, for example, present in the texts and speeches of the Algerian FIS and Palestinian Hamas, adds the researcher, who has established the most important bibliography of recent editions of this false unsinkable.

The absolute, diabolical and deadly enemy

Bibliography that keeps getting richer and is not confined to the Arab countries. The text reappears publicly in many former communist states — it is over-the-counter in Moscow — and has been the subject of recent editions in India, Japan or Latin America, with widespread distribution. Far from being reclusive in obscure dispensaries, as is now the case in Europe, it is, for example, on sale in some kiosks in Buenos Aires. In these countries, the survival of this text was not affected by the end of the Second World War, just as the demonstration of the plagiarism that constituted it had not prevented its use against the “Judeo-Bolshevism”. It is the strength of this “anti-Semitic Nostradamus” to transcend any rational rebuttal. Pierre-André Taguieff sees it as the most effective expression of the “modern political myth” of the “Dominating Jew”: “By its structure — the revelation of the Secret of the Jews by a confidential text allegedly attributed to them — the text of the Protocols satisfies the Need explanation, giving meaning to the indecipherable movement of history, which it simplifies walking by designating a single enemy. It makes it possible to legitimize, by presenting them as preventive self-defense, all actions against an absolute, diabolical and deadly enemy that conceals itself under multiple figures: democracy, liberalism, communism, capitalism, the Republic etc. The success and longevity of the protocols, originally made for issues limited to the Russian court, paradoxically reflect the lack of precision of the text, which can easily be adapted to all crisis contexts, where the sense of events is floating, Indeterminable. Hence its permanent reuse. »

  1. The Protocols of the Sages of Zion, by Pierre-André Taguieff. Volume I: A forgery and its uses in the Century (408 p.); Volume II: Studies and Documents (816 p.). Berg International, 1992.