The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

The Skinhead International: South Africa

Schooled as they are in Nazi racial doctrine, and stirred by the sermons of violence resounding in their own music, it was not unexpected that Skinheads would exercise their disaffection in the new society in South Africa.

There are known to be Skins active in South Africa, although estimates of their number are difficult to come by. Most are active in the Johannesburg area. In one suburb, Yeoville, there are reported to be 20 Skinehads, mostly English-speaking, who have at times displayed a Nazi flag, along with the banner of the paramilitary neo-Nazi Afrikaner Resistance Movement (AWB). Late in 1992, there were several incidents in Yeoville in which blacks were beaten by Skinheads; in one such attack an apartment was firebombed.

Skins have more recently been observed with their boots and heavily tattooed bodies at rallies of the AWB, headed by the terrorist Eugene Terreblanche. One Skinhead has reported that many Skins hold positions of rank in the AWB. (Anti-Defamation League, 65)

Work Cited

Anti-Defamation League. The Skinhead International: A Worldwide Survey of Neo-Nazi Skinheads. New York: Anti-Defamation League, 1995. Anti-Defamation League, 823 United Nations Plaza, New York, NY 10017.

Disclaimer: not all skinheads are neo-nazis or white supremacists. There are many skinheads who are non- or anti-racist, and who come from a variety of different religious and cultural backgrounds. Nizkor recognizes their achievements in anti-racism: they are part of the traditional, non-racist skinhead subculture and are not the perpetrators of the hate crimes discussed here.

Unless otherwise specified, the word "skinhead" within these pages refers only to neo-Nazi and white supremacist skinheads, the perpetrators of hate crimes and participants in racist organizations. We cannot edit the body of the text above, because it was not written by Nizkor, and to change the wording would be fraudulent. Please keep in mind that not all skinheads are racist.

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