David Dees: Conspiratorial Artist

June 20, 2008

David Dees, a Louisville, Kentucky-based graphic artist, has found a large audience for his anti-Semitic and conspiratorial art. This artwork has been circulated on extremist email groups, published on the Websites of 9/11 conspiracy theorists and turned into videos posted on YouTube and other Websites. A biography of Dees posted to his Website claims that his images are "an attempt to wake others up about the onslaught of the elite's power hungry world government plan of domination."

A great deal of Dees' art is overtly anti-Semitic and many of his images promote Holocaust denial. In one image, prisoners are disembarking from a train at Auschwitz. In the foreground a man holds a placard reading "What really happened?" while "Truth does not fear investigation" - a line used by Holocaust deniers - is written on the side of a cattle car. In another image a prisoner jailed for having "asked for proof of 6 million gassed during Holocaust" is imprisoned between a "serial rapist" and a "murderer." Faceless guards are dressed in riot control outfits with a Star of David with the letter Z at its center on their chests and Israeli police badges on their sleeves. Another image depicts a woman being zapped by a laser gun by the same faceless guards as she reads a book entitled Did Six Million Really Die?

In yet another, Dees uses pictures of the gas chambers at Auschwitz and promotes the lie that Zyklon-B gas was used to kill lice, not people, in Auschwitz, which he asserts has been proven by "scientific testing." This falsehood is at the heart of many Holocaust deniers' propaganda. In the same image, Dees alleges that it is the "Zionists" who claim the gas was used "to exterminate millions of Jews," again suggesting that the Holocaust is a myth created by those who wanted to establish a Jewish state.

The Star of David with the letter Z (most likely referring to Zionists) at its center is a mainstay in Dees' anti-Semitic images, whether on the uniforms of the faceless guards, within a red mushroom cloud hovering over an American city, on a pendant on the wrist of California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger (who wears a Nazi badge on his lapel), or in a dark sky over the chained wrists of an Arab child. In the context of Dee's images, the Star of David with the letter Z suggests Jewish control over individuals and world events.

In another anti-Semitic image, Ariel Sharon, the former Israeli Prime Minister, is shown standing in a pool of American soldiers' blood next to Dick Cheney, a tiny George Bush in Sharon's jacket pocket.

Dees' bio claims that his blatantly anti-Semitic images, which question the Holocaust or suggest that Jews control the government or world events, are "Pro-Jewish, but extremely Anti-Zionist."

He does not limit himself to the creation of anti-Semitic images. Promoting his art as "satire," he has posted images to his Websites depicting President Bush as a bumbling leader and Americans as overweight, addicted to fast food, and misinformed by mainstream media. In dozens of other conspiratorial images hosted on additional pages of his Websites or elsewhere, Dees criticizes Bush, Dick Cheney, and other American leaders with gruesome imagery, accusing them of murdering Iraqis and Americans and butchering the United States Constitution. Many of the images also promote some of the more popular current Internet conspiracy theories, including the idea that the American government staged the 9/11 terrorist attacks, that a secret group known as the Bilderbergs controls world events, and that "chemtrails" (the lines of exhaust left in the sky by passenger airplanes) spread deadly illnesses.

Rense, a Website that posts anti-Semitic material, maintains an extensive and regularly updated archive of Dees' images and often posts a Dees image on its front page. Rense also provides links to virulent anti-Semitic writings hosted on other Websites, including a post by the "dancing street preacher" Brother Nathanael Kapner accusing Jews of creating a "Jewish police state" in America, and Judicial-Inc, which on a daily basis updates its collection of posts accusing Jews of plotting every perceived ill in the world, from the mistreatment of Native Americans to the promulgation of pornography to even being Jack the Ripper, a late 19th century English serial killer. Both of Dees' own Websites link directly to Rense and have advised visitors, "This art is free to use for non-profit purposes, and I encourage you to openly distribute to others with the hope it will educate, enlighten, deprogram, and at least, entertain." Dees has also contributed the artwork and cover illustrations for Republic, an anti-government, conspiratorial magazine.

Dees, who calls himself a "freelance artist and illustrator," claims to have over 20 years of experience as a graphic artist.