The Crafty State

By Michel Bounan


Several examples of plagiarism by the author of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion from the Dialogue in Hell. (These extracts, which constitute Appendix II to the book by Norman Cohn, History of a Myth: The Jewish Conspiracy and the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, Gallimard, 1967,[1] are representative of the procedure utilized in the fabrication of the Protocols. For his part, Henri Rollin, in The Apocalypse of our Times, Allia, 1991, more than 160 extracts from the Protocols forged from the Dialogue in Hell.)

Dialogue in Hell
First Dialogue

The bad instincts of man are more powerful than the good. . . . Fear and strength are more in control of him than reason. . . . All men aspire to domination, and all would be oppressors if they could: all or almost all are ready to sacrifice the rights of the others for their own interests. Who among them restrains the devouring animals that one calls men? At the origin of society, there was brutal and unchecked force: later, it was the law, that is to say, force regulated by form. You have consulted all of the sources of History: everywhere force appears before rights. Political liberty is only a relative idea.

Protocols (trans. Lambelin)[2]
First Protocol

Men who have bad instincts are more numerous than those who have good ones. This is why one expects better results by governing men by violence and terror. Each man aspires to power, each would like to become a dictator if he could; at the same time, few are those who are not ready to sacrifice the goods of all to attain their own. Who has restrained the ferocious beasts that one calls men? . . . At the beginning of the social order, they were subjected to brutal and blind force, later to the law, which is merely the same force, but masked. I have concluded that, according to the law of nature, what is right is force. . . . Political liberty is an idea and not a fact.

Seventh Dialogue

I would institute immense financial monopolies, reserves of the public fortune, on which the fate of all private fortunes would so closely depend that they would be swallowed along with State credit the day after any political catastrophe. As the leader of the government, all my edicts would constantly tend to the same goal: to excessively develop the preponderance of the State, by making it the sovereign protector, promoter and remunerator. . . . At present, the aristocracy has disappeared as a political force; but the landed bourgeoisie is still an element of dangerous resistance to the government because it is independent; it would be necessary to impoverish it or even ruin it completely. To do this, it would suffice to increase the taxes that weigh upon real estate, to maintain agriculture in a state of relative inferiority, to favor commerce and industry to the limit, but principally speculation, because the too-great prosperity of industry can itself become a danger by creating a too-great number of independent fortunes. . . .

Protocol VI

Soon we will institute enormous monopolies, reserves of colossal wealth, upon which the fortunes -- even the large ones of the Christians -- would depend, such that they would be swallowed up along with State credit the day after a political catastrophe. . . . We must develop by all possible means the importance of our supreme government, by representing it as the protector and remunerator of all those who willingly submit themselves to it. The Christian aristocracy's political strength has disappeared, we no longer have to reckon with it; but, as the owner of real estate, it can harm us to the extent its resources can be independent. Thus, we must absolutely dispossess it of its lands. The best means for doing this is increasing taxes on real estate. . . . These measures will keep real estate in a state of absolute subjection. . . . At the same time, it is necessary to strongly protect commerce and industry and especially speculation: without speculation, industry would multiply private capital. . . .

Twelfth Dialogue

I foresee the possibility of neutralizing the press through the press itself. Since it is as great a force as journalism, my government will be a journalist. This will be journalism incarnated. . . . I would count the number of newspapers that represent what you call the opposition. If there were 10 for the opposition, I would have 20 for the government; if there were 20, I would have 40; if there were 40, I would have 80. This is how I would use the faculty, which I have reserved for myself, of authorizing the creation of new public rags. . . . The masses will not suspect this tactic. . . . Like the god Vishnu, my press will have 100 arms, and these arms will be in favor of all the nuances of every opinion in all corners of the country. One will be of my party without knowing it. Those who believe they speak their language will be speaking mine; those who believe they are rousing their party will be rousing mine; those who believe they march under their flag will be marching under mine. . . . You must know that journalism is a kind of Freemasonry; those who practice it are all more or less linked to each other by the tie of professional discretion; like the ancient augurs, they do not easily divulge the secret of their oracles. They do not gain anything by betraying themselves, because, for the most part, they have more or less shameful wounds. It is quite probable that at the center of the capital, in a certain circle of people, things are not a mystery; but everywhere, elsewhere, one will not be suspicious, and the vast majority of the nation will march with the most complete confidence along the track of the guides that we have provided. . . . It is in the provinces that the greatest part of the influence of my journalism is exerted. There I always have the temperature of opinion that is necessary for me and each of my attacks will surely be carried out there. The provincial press entirely belongs to me, because, out there, there is no contradiction nor possible discussion; from the center of the administration where I am seated, one will transmit . . . the orders to make the newspapers speak in such-and-such a way, even at the same time, in every corner of the country; such influence will be produced, such impetus will be provided, quite often before the capital suspects it. . . . The opinion of the capital will, when necessary, lag behind the exterior movement that envelops it, if need be, unknown to it. . . . I do not want things such that the country can be agitated by rumors that come from within, nor even by simple, tame news. When there is some extraordinary suicide, some crude affair concerning money . . . I will forbid the newspapers to speak of it.

Protocol XII

Literature and journalism are the two most important educational forces; this is why our government will be the owner of the majority of the newspapers. This will neutralize the harmful influence of the private press. . . . If we authorize 10 newspapers, we will found 30, and so on. The public will not be suspicious. All the newspapers published by us will apparently present the most oppositional tendencies and opinions . . . which will attract our adversaries to them without mistrust. . . . They will have, like the Hindu god Vishnu, one hundred hands . . . which will conduct public opinion in the direction that is suitable to our goals. . . . The imbeciles who believe they are repeating the opinions of the newspaper of their party will be repeating our opinion or one that pleases us. They will imagine that they are following the organ of their party and, in reality, they will be following the flag that we hoist for them. . . . Already, at least in the form of French journalism, there exists a Freemasonic solidarity. All the press organs are linked together by the professional secret; similar to the ancient augurs, none of its members will yield the secret of its information, if they do not receive the order to do so. No journalist will decide to betray the secret, because none of them will admitted into the literature if they do not have a shameful blemish in his past; his blemish would be immediately revealed. As long as these blemishes are someone's secret, the halo of journalism attracts the opinion of the majority of the country and one follows it with enthusiasm. Our calculations especially extend into the provinces. It is necessary that we excite there hopes and aspirations that are opposed to those of the capital and that we present them as the spontaneous hopes and aspirations of the provinces. It is clear that the source will always be the same: it comes from us. As long as we do not yet enjoy complete power, we will sometimes need things to be such that the capitals are enveloped by the opinions of the people, that is to say, the majority, maneuvered by our agents. It is necessary for us that, psychologically, the capitals do not discuss the matter, because it has already been accepted by the provincial majority. When we enter into the new regime, which will prepare our rule, we cannot allow the revelation by the press of public dishonesty; it will be necessary that one believes that the new regime has so completely satisfied everyone that crime has disappeared. . . .

[1] Originally written in English and published under the title Warrant for Genocide: The Myth of the Jewish World Conspiracy and the Protocols of the Elders of Zion (London: Eyre & Spottiswoode, 1967). Fortunately for us, Bounan's annex does not translate Cohn's citations of Maurice Joly back into French, but quoted directly from the French original.

[2] Roger Lambelin (1857-1929), a French soldier and anti-Semite, translated the Protocols from Russian into French in 1921. We have checked our translation of Lambelin's French against other English translations of the Protocols to assure its accuracy.

L'Etat retors (The Crafty State) initially appeared as a preface to the definitive edition of the Dialogue in Hell between Machiavelli and Montesquieu by Maurice Joly (Editions Allia, 1992). It was published as a separate volume in 1997. Translated from the French by NOT BORED! November 2007. Footnotes by the translator.

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