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FBI tweets link to files on ‘Protocols of Elders of Zion,’ sparking anger

Agency does not provide context for files from its archives on the anti-Semitic text, leading to accusations it could encourage bigotry against Jews

Illustrative: The FBI logo outside the Atlanta field office on February 1, 2019 in Atlanta, Georgia (Jessica McGowan/Getty Images via JTA)
Illustrative: The FBI logo outside the Atlanta field office on February 1, 2019 in Atlanta, Georgia (Jessica McGowan/Getty Images via JTA)

JTA — An official FBI Twitter account drew criticism for tweeting a link to a 139-page selection of the bureau’s files on “The Protocols of the Elders of Zion,” the infamously anti-Semitic early 20th century text that accuses Jews of world domination.

The FBI Records Vault sent the tweet on Wednesday afternoon without context, and some Twitter users took it as a promotion of the message in the “Protocols.” However, the Twitter account regularly tweets declassified archival FBI documents.

The FBI did not respond to a request for comment by publishing time.

The files in the link include different copies of the “Protocols” text, which claims it is “Proof that Communism is a Jewish world plot to enslave the gentiles and to seize power during the resulting chaos,” as well as letters to former FBI head J. Edgar Hoover about it.

https://twitter.com/FBIRecordsVault/status/1296144912497352705

There is also a 1964 report by the Senate Judiciary Committee calling the text “fabricated” and “crude and vicious nonsense.”

The tweet spurred thousands of responses: Some Twitter users cheered it, while others condemned it.

Bend the Arc, a progressive Jewish advocacy group, wrote on Twitter: “The @FBI is tweeting out the most famous, fabricated antisemitic text with absolutely zero context. This is the same anti-Jewish lie that inspired Hitler and the Nazi regime. Now it’s coming directly from a white nationalist administration.”

Others echoed the concern:

https://twitter.com/NoahHurowitz/status/1296155177943216130

https://twitter.com/mollycrabapple/status/1296159020470996992

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