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Nazi symbols : Letters, numbers, runes: right-wing extremist symbols and their meanings

Nazis recognize each other through codes, symbols, and clothing. An overview.

by Marle Liebelt
October 12, 2017, 5:06 p.m.

Dithmarschen license plates with an "L" in the license plate are prohibited - because that could be understood as "HEI-L". The combination of “IZ-AN” is prohibited in the Steinburg district. Reading backwards you can see the word Nazi there. "In the right-wing scene there are even more codes, especially certain combinations of numbers and letters that are typical for the hidden expression of right-wing sentiment," says SPD MP Tobias von Pein.

Last week the members of the Schleswig-Holstein state parliament decided to discuss in a committee which letter and number combinations can be used on license plates - and which are not. But there are more symbols.

Many right-wing extremists come out by wearing these different symbols, clothing brands, codes or the like. Now, a license plate with the letters AH and the number 88 does not necessarily have to mean that a right-wing extremist is sitting in the car. Perhaps Anton Hermes, who was born in 1988, simply had no idea choosing this number. Or maybe not.

"Belltower - Network for Digital Civil Society" is a platform of the Amadeu Antonio Foundation, whose aim is to strengthen democratic civil society that is consistently opposed to right-wing extremism, racism and anti-Semitism. The website offers a range of information about signs and symbols that have a right-wing extremist background:

You should take a closer look at these abbreviations. They can be seen particularly often from license plates - often in combination with number combinations, such as 88 (The "H" is the eighth letter of the alphabet. 88 could stand for "Heil Hitler") or 18 ("AH" Adolf Hitler). But these acronyms could also appear on house walls, on clothing or even as a tattoo.

  • "SS" - Protection Squad
  • "SA" - Storm Division
  • "HJ" - Hitler Youth
  • "HKN KRZ" / "HTLR" / "NTNL SZLST" - Hakenkreutz / Hitler / National Socialist
  •   "NGK" - National against child molesters: right-wing extremist initiative which in the past worked together with the NPD against child molesters and, among other things, demanded the death penalty for such.
  • "N.G.A." - No-go areas: Regions or city districts in which right-wing extremist ideas and everyday culture are so aggressively lived that migrants in particular can only stay there if their lives are at risk.
  • "SGH" - Sieg Heil
  • "WPWW" - White Pride World Wide
  • "SWP" - Supreme White Power
  • "NSBM" / "NSHC" - National Socialist Black Metal / National Socialist Hate Core
  • "GNLS" - Good night left side
  • "A.J.A.B." - All Jews are bastards
  • "KKK" - Ku Klux Klan
  • "H8" / "HH" - Hate / Heil Hitler
  • "C18" - Combat 18: Adolf Hitler combat unit
  • "BH" / "B&H" - Blood & Honor, sometimes also “28”: Skinhead network that organizes right-wing rock concerts and the distribution of neo-Nazi music across Europe.
  • "IB" - Identitarian movement
  • "NSBA" - National socialists nationwide action
  • "W.O.T.A.N." - Will of the aryan nation
  • "WAW" - White Aryan resistance
Clothing brands ("National Brands")

Lists with “right clothing brands” are not always easy to create and certainly not always without contradictions. However, there are brands that are undoubtedly popular and consciously worn in the right-wing extremist scene. Among other things, the Berlin police keep a list of clothing brands that their officers are not allowed to wear due to connections to the right-wing extremist scene. These and other brands are listed by "Belltower".

  • Ansgar Aryan
  • Consdaple
  • Eric and Sons
  • Masterrace Europe
  • Outlaw
  • Reconquista
  • Rizist
  • Thor Steinar
  • Troublemaker
  • Dryve by Suizhyde
  • Bird of prey wear
  • Hate-hate
  • Hermannsland
  • Sport free
  • Pro violence

Brands that are worn in different scenes but have a special meaning for the neo-Nazi scene:

  • Pit bull
  • Lonsdale
  • Fred Perry
  • Ben Sherman
  • Alpha Industry

Some of these brands actively oppose being associated with the right-wing scene. For example, Lonsdale supports anti-racist projects and has stopped deliveries to Nazi shops.

Most of the numbers in the codes represent the location of a letter in the alphabet. The “1” stands for “A”, the “2” for “B” etc. This is how initials can be hidden.

  • 18 ("Adolf Hitler")
  • 88 ("Heil Hitler")
  • 74 ("Greater Germany")
  • 124 ("Germany exempt from foreigners")
  • 198 (19 + 8 "Sieg Heil")
  • 444 ("Germany for the Germans")
  • 168: 1 (This "bottom line" stems from a bomb attack by right-wing extremist Timothy McVeigh in the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City in April 1995, killing 168 people. McVeigh was subsequently sentenced to death, which was carried out in 2001.)
  • 4/20 (birthday of Adolf Hitler)
  • 1919 (19 + 19 "SS")

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