Hate on Display™ Hate Symbols Database

This database provides an overview of many of the symbols most frequently used by a variety of white supremacist groups and movements, as well as some other types of hate groups. 
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88

88 is a white supremacist numerical code for "Heil Hitler." H is the eighth letter of the alphabet, so 88 = HH = Heil Hitler.

Blut und Ehre

"Blut und Ehre" is a German phrase that translates into "Blood and Honor;" it was popularized by the Nazi Party (as a Hitler Youth slogan and elsewhere). Since World War II, this German phrase (and even more so for its English translation) has commonly been used by white supremacists in Europe, the United States, and elsewhere.

Crossed Grenades

The crossed grenade emblem originated with the infamous Dirlewanger Brigade of World War II, a Waffen SS unit that engaged in a number of atrocities.

German Phrases

A number of white supremacists, especially neo-Nazis and racist skinheads, may use various German (or German-like) words or phrases, often derived from Nazi Germany or earlier German ultranationalists, but also sometimes more modern (such as "Weiss Macht" for "White Power").

Hitler Salute (hand sign)

The Nazi or Hitler salute debuted in Nazi Germany in the 1930s as a way to pay homage to Adolf Hitler. It consists of raising an outstretched right arm with the palm down. In Nazi Germany, it was often accompanied by chanting or shouting "Heil Hitler" or "Sieg Heil." Since World War II, neo-Nazis and other white supremacists have continued to use the salute, making it the most common white supremacist hand sign in the world.

Imperial German Flag

Because Germany has banned use of the swastika and other Nazi imagery, some German neo-Nazis use an older flag, taken from Imperial Germany, as a substitute for the Nazi flag. Nazis elsewhere, such as in the United States, sometimes do the same.

Life Rune

The Life (also Elhaz or Algis) rune is an ancient runic symbol appropriated by the Nazis to help create an idealized "Aryan/Norse" heritage, which led to its adoption by later white supremciasts. Because the life rune is also used by many non-racists, it should carefully be judged in context.

Meine Ehre Heisst Treue

"Meine Ehre Heisst Treue" is a German phrase that translates roughly to "My Honor Is Loyalty." This phrase was used as a motto of the Waffen SS in Nazi Germany; as a result, many neo-Nazis and other white supremacists around the world use this German phrase, or English equivalent.

Nazi Eagle

The Nazi Eagle - an eagle clutching a swastika - emerged as a symbol during the Nazi era in Germany and since the end of that regime has been adopted by white supremacists and neo-Nazis worldwide.

Othala Rune

The othala rune is part of several runic alphabet systems that were common in pre-Roman Europe. The Nazis adopted this rune, among others, into their symbology, causing it to be a favorite symbol among white supremacists ever since.

Sieg Heil

"Sieg Heil" is a German phrase that translates to "Hail Victory." The Nazi Party in Germany adopted the phrase, which became one of its most widely used and notorious slogans. As a result, after World War II, white supremacists in Europe, North America, and elsewhere adopted the phrase as well.

Skrewdriver

Skrewdriver, long defunct, is the British white power music band that essentially created white power music as a genre. The band, and its deceased leader, Ian Stuart Donaldson, remain held in the highest esteem by white supremacists.

Sonnenrad

The sonnenrad or sunwheel is an ancient Indo-European symbol appropriated by Nazi Germany, which has led modern day white supremacists to use it as a hate symbol.

SS (hand sign)

In the 2000s, white supremacists created a handsign intended to memorialize the Schutzstaffeln or SS of Nazi Germany, Hitler's secret police, political army, and concentration camp guards. The handsign utilizes both hands to make a lightning bolt symbol, as a pair of lightning bolts was the main symbol of the SS.

SS Bolts

SS bolts are a common white supremacist symbol derived from the Nazi-era symbol for the Schutzstaffel (SS), whose members ranged from Gestapo agents to Waffen SS soldiers to concentration camp guards.

SS Divisional Insignia

During World War II, the SS fielded a private army of nearly 40 divisions that fought on every front, often committing war crimes and atrocities. Following the war, neo-Nazis and other white supremacists began to use the various divisional insignia of these military formations as hate symbols.

Sturmabteilung

The Sturmabteilung (or SA) emblem was used by Hitler's so-called "Brownshirts," paramilitary formations utilized by Hitler to intimidate political opponents before and after his rise to power in Germany. Now it is used by neo-Nazis and other modern-day white supremacists.

Swastika

The swastika is an ancient symbol used in many cultures that was adopted by Adolf Hitler and turned into a symbol of hatred. Since then, the swastika has become perhaps the most notorious hate symbol in Western culture.

Totenkopf

The Totenkopf, or Death's Head, is a symbol used by Hitler's SS that has been adopted by neo-Nazis and white supremacists since World War II.

Volksfront

Volksfront is a hybrid racist skinhead gang/neo-Nazi group that started in the Pacific Northwest in the 1990s.

Volksfront (hand sign)

Members of the white supremacist group Volksfront have used several handsigns to represent their gang. A common one-handed sign features the fingers of the right hand divided into a "V" shape, often held over the chest. A two-handed sign uses one hand to make a "V" shape (using two or four fingers) and the other hand to make the shape of the letter "F."

Volksfront Flag

Volksfront is a hybrid racist skinhead gang/neo-Nazi group that started in the Pacific Northwest in the 1990s.

Wolfsangel

The Wolfsangel is an ancient runic symbols that was believed to be able to ward off wolves. Today, thanks to its appropriation by Nazi Germany, the Wolfsangel is one of the more popular white supremacist symbols.

Zyklon B

Zyklon B was the name of the gas used to kill over a million victims, most of them Jews, in the death camps constructed by Nazi Germany during the Holocaust. Because of its association with killing Jews, Zyklon B has been adopted as a symbol by modern-day white supremacists, who often use it to make sick jokes about killing Jews.

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All the symbols depicted here must be evaluated in the context in which they appear. Few symbols represent just one idea or are used exclusively by one group. For example, the Confederate Flag is a symbol that is frequently used by white supremacists but which also has been used by people and groups that are not racist. Similarly, other symbols in this database may be significant to people who are not extreme or racist. The descriptions here point our significant multiple means but may not be able to relay every possible meaning of a particular symbol.

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