The Zionist Occupation Government conspiracy theory
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Zionist Occupation Government or Zionist Occupied Government (abbreviated as ZOG) is an antisemitic conspiracy theory that holds that Jews secretly control a given country, while the formal government is a puppet regime.
The expression is used by antisemitic groups such as white supremacists in the United States and Europe, ultra-nationalists such as Pamyat in Russia, and various far-right groups, including some in Poland.
The word "Zionist" in "Zionist Occupation Government" should not be confused with the ideology of Zionism, the movement for support of a Jewish state in the Land of Israel. As the conspiracy theorists chiefly name countries outside that area, the usage of Zionist in this context is misleading, and intended to portray Jews as conspirators who aim to control the world, as in the forged Protocols of the Elders of Zion.
One early appearance of the term was in 1976 in an article, Welcome to ZOG-World, attributed to an American neo-Nazi Eric Thomson.[a] The term came to the attention of a larger audience in a December 27, 1984 article in The New York Times about robberies committed in California and Washington by a white supremacist group called The Order. According to the newspaper, the crimes "were conducted to raise money for a war upon the United States Government, which the group calls 'ZOG,' or Zionist Occupation Government."
The Order of the Silent Brotherhood was an offshoot of the Aryan Nations, an organization founded in the early 1970s by Richard G. Butler; the latter had since the 1950s been associated with another antisemitic group, called the Church of Jesus Christ Christian. Both of these groups trace their origins to antisemitic activists, like Gerald L. K. Smith, and have interacted with the Ku Klux Klan.
Several Roman Catholics have also been involved with anti-Jewish hate movements such as the radio broadcaster, Father Charles Coughlin, views held by some Catholics since the times of the Inquisition.
The name was publicized extensively in Aryan Nations literature. In December 1984 Newsweek magazine reported that the Aryan Nations had set up a Bulletin Board System called "Aryan Nation Liberty Net" to offer information such as, for instance, the locations of Communist Party offices and "ZOG informers".
In 1996, the Aryan Nations posted on its website an "Aryan Declaration of Independence, in which we find that "the history of the present Zionist Occupied Government of the United States of America is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations... [all] having a direct object—the establishment of an absolute tyranny over these states." Holding "the eradication of the White race and its culture" as "one of its foremost purposes", the "ZOG" is accused of relinquishing "powers of government to private corporations, White traitors and ruling class Jewish families."
Since 1996 the name has spread in usage, and is now popular with many other antisemitic organizations. Swedish Neo-Nazis, for example, say that Jews in what they call the Swedish Zionist Occupied Government are importing immigrants to "dilute the blood of the white race". Websites such as Jew Watch accuse the entire spectrum of Western nations and other countries of being ruled by "Zionist Occupation Governments".
- Canadian White Nationalists use the term "ZOG" as well.
- Berlet, Chip (2004-10-01). "Zog Ate My Brains: Conspiracy theories about Jews abound". New Internationalist (372). Retrieved 2010-12-09.
- Daniels 1997, p. 45: “Conceptualizations of class and state converge in the white supremacist discourse in the characterization of the United States government as the ‘Zionist Occupation Government’ (ZOG)... As indicated by the ubiquitous reference to the state as ‘ZOG’ (‘Zionist’ is equated with ‘Jewish’) within these publications, the state is depicted as inherently ‘Jewish’, a racial identity within the discourse. The government, as well as the corporate elite, is supposedly ‘occupied’ and controlled by Jews.”
- Bronner, Stephen Eric (2000), A Rumor About the Jews: Reflections on Antisemitism and "The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion", Palgrave Macmillan, p. 136,
The National States Rights Party and the California Noontide Press distributed the Protocols during the 1970s and it is still hailed by representatives of right-wing militias: William Luther Pierce, author of the neofascist bestseller The Turner Diaries, for example, identifies the American state as a "Zionist Occupation Government.
- Brasher, Brenda (2001), Encyclopedia of Fundamentalism, Routledge, p. 305,
With the racist and anti-Semitic theology of Christian Identity as their justification, they blame the Jewish Antichrist, or the Zionist Occupation Government (ZOG), which rules in Washington, taking its orders from internationalist Jews in Israel, the United Nations, and the Fortune 500. Attracting old-line hate groups like the Ku Klux Klan and inspiring newer ones like the Aryan Nation Alliance..., the militia and Patriot movement have helped to legitimize racist and anti-Semitic hate groups...
- Perry, Barbara (2003), Hate and Bias Crime, Routledge, p. 325,
...vivid philosophy of White supremacy, including the belief that the United States is manipulated by foreign Jewish interests collectively known as the Zionist Occupation Government (ZOG). With this conspiracy theory, the strain is "explained" (e.g., the Jews are behind multicultural curricula), and the solution is presented: hate crimes and race war.
- Pilch, Richard F; Zilinskas, Raymond A (2005), Encyclopedia of Bioterrorism Defense, Wiley, p. 114,
The importance of Christian Identity (CI) in the context of bioterrorism is that it has been openly embraced by certain U.S. right-wing ‘militia’ and terrorist cells whose members have expressed interest in acquiring or utilizing pathogens and toxic chemical agents... as weapons against their opponents, including representatives of the ‘Zionist Occupation Government’ (ZOG) that they feel is controlled by ‘satanic’ Jews.
- Sauter, Mark; Carafano, James (2005), Homeland Security, McGraw-Hill, p. 122,
The Order, a faction of the Aryan Nations, seized national attention during the 1980s. The tightly organized racist and anti-Semitic group opposed the federal government, calling it the ‘ZOG,’ or Zionist Occupation Government.
- Weitz, Eric; Fenner, Angelica, eds. (2004), Fascism and Neofascism: Critical Writings on the Radical Right in Europe, Studies in European Culture and History, Palgrave Macmillan, p. 208, ISBN 978-1-40396659-9,
...the neo-Nazis have proclaimed themselves a white/Aryan resistance movement fighting the Zionist Occupation Government (ZOG) and racial traitors..
- Blobaum, Robert (1983). Antisemitism And Its Opponents In Modern Poland. Cornell University Press. p. 97. ISBN 0-691-11306-8..
- Schwarz, Rabbi Sidney (2006), Judaism and Justice: The Jewish Passion to Repair the World, Jewish Lights Publishing, p. 96, ISBN 1-58023-312-0,
One of the most widely distributed anti-Semitic tracts in history is The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, a book of canards authored in the nineteenth century that portrays Jews as conspiring to seek global dominance. Similarly, American-based racist groups in this last century have frequently leveled accusations against Jews for controlling both banks and public officials..
- King, Wayne (1984-12-27). "Links of Anti-semitic Band Provoke 6-state Parley". The New York Times. p. 7.
Canadian White Nationalists use this term as well.
- CNN, Mea Culpa
- New York Times, Mea Culpa
- Christian Posse Comitatus Newsletter, n.d. quoted in Stern, Kenneth S (1996), A Force upon the Plain: The American Militia Movement and the Politics of Hate, New York: Simon & Schuster, p. 50.
- Pred, Allan (2000), Even in Sweden, University of California Press.
- "Jewish Occupied Governments". Jew Watch. Retrieved 2008-01-09.
- Thomson, Eric, Welcome to ZOG-World, FAEM.
- Daniels, Jessie, White Lies: Race, Class, Gender and Sexuality in White Supremacist Discourse, UK: Routledge, ISBN 0-415-91289-X
- "Aryan nations", Poisoning the Web: Hatred Online, The Anti-Defamation League.
- "Extremists conflicted", The Christian Science Monitor, 2002-06-18.
- Southern Poverty Law Center, Southern Poverty Law Center.