The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Shofar FTP Archive File: orgs/american/adl/skinhead-international/skins-columbia

Newsgroups: alt.skinheads,alt.politics.white-power,alt.politics.nationalism.white,soc.culture.columbia
Subject: ADL: Skinhead International; Columbia
Summary: The ADL's "Skinhead International: A Worldwide Survey
         of Neo-Nazi Skinheads"
Followup-To: alt.skinheads

Archive/File: pub/orgs/american/adl/skinhead-international/skins-columbia
Last-Modified: 1995/08/28


The voices of members of the Columbian Skinhead gang GRAE
("Anti-Foreigners Skinhead Group") in Bogota, as quoted in the
weekly journal _Semana_ (June 1, 1993):

  "We are a group of young people of the extreme right. 
  We are called Columbian National Socialists. And we are
  violend. We fight the drug addicts, vagrants, prostitutes."

  "We are not racists, but we believe that each [race] ought
  to stay in its place."

  "We are not copies of the German Skinheads. We don't have
  to read Hitler to love our country. We simply apply his
  ideas to our society."

The appearance of neo-Nazi Skinheads (_Cabezas Rapadas_) in
Columbia is recent compared to other countries; the phenomenon
drew notice no earlier than February 1993, when GRAE was
formed in Bogota. The gang consisted of only seven members
then, but their numbers had grown to 40 within a few months,
and groups had sprung up in the provincial capital cities of
Medellin, Pereira, and Cali. By late spring, their memberships
totalled perhaps 80, the members' ages ranging from 16 to 25
years. Since then, however, the Skinhead scene has declined

                   Skinhead Patrol

One rainy summer night the editors of _Semana_ dispatched
reporters to observe an evening's activities of members of
GRAE in Bogota. The Skins set out to "patrol" the city at 10
p.m. "dressed in green trench coats, tight jeans, steel-toed
army boots, and with their heads shaved..." Their aim: to make
their presence felt at the favorite gathering places of the
city's youth. During the next two or three hours, the
reporters witnessed the gang's involvement in the following
activities: smaching the windows of a tavern where some people
were said to be using drugs; kicking a passerby whose T-shirt
bore a U.S. flag ("He is a shitty Yanqui," they said); and
finally beating and kicking four male transvestites until all
four were unconscious. The reporters heard some cries of
encouragement from people on the street: "Viva Columbia!" and
"Onward with the cause!"

Foreigners are among the chief victims of the "cause." The
Bogota Skins have assaulted natives of Ecuador and European
visitors they brand as "hippies." The GRAE Skinheads say,
"Columbia must be for the Columbians, and the pride of being
born in this country must be restored." Other targets are the
impoverished and the homeless. A member of GRAE gives his
rationale for violence:

  What do we need indigents for? -- or drug addicts or
  prostitutes? These people produce nothing. They only
  damage the image of our country. That's why we have to
  attack them -- and the more we hit them, the better!

For all the dubious ethics of Skinhead tactics, GRAE is
cautious about the "character" of prospective members and has
rejected many. An acceptable member will either have a steady
job or be a student, and will endeavor to be "the best at
whatever he does." He will come from a healthy family, and
will be neither an alcoholic nor an addict. "We want well
educated people with good manners," says a member of the GRAE

There are other sorts of Skinhead gangs. One of the oldest and
most violent originally concentrated its efforts on attacking
prostitutes and indigents, but more recently named itself the
"Anti-Animal Exploitation Skinheads" (REA) and planned to
limit its future activity to ecological themes -- possibly
attacking laboratories where animal experiments are conducted,
and attempting to put an end to bullfighting. The REA claims
45 members. Another of the smaller groups (without ecological
concerns) reportedly has armed its members with pistols and
other weapons. As for the Skinhead music, the popular British
skinzine _Last Chance_ has publicized two Columbian bands,
Assault Detachment and Cerveza Amarza (Bitter Beer).
(Anti-Defamation League, 25-26)

                          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

Home ·  Site Map ·  What's New? ·  Search Nizkor

© The Nizkor Project, 1991-2012

This site is intended for educational purposes to teach about the Holocaust and to combat hatred. Any statements or excerpts found on this site are for educational purposes only.

As part of these educational purposes, Nizkor may include on this website materials, such as excerpts from the writings of racists and antisemites. Far from approving these writings, Nizkor condemns them and provides them so that its readers can learn the nature and extent of hate and antisemitic discourse. Nizkor urges the readers of these pages to condemn racist and hate speech in all of its forms and manifestations.