The North Vietnamese currency printed by the United States that had a message on an extra strip on the side that could be cut off and the bogus Dong notes spent. Both the psychological and economic uses were then used. The effectiveness of the counterfeits is seen in the few number of intact fake notes available with the extra strip compared to those modified and spent.
The United States $100 bill was (is?) known to have been very exactly counterfeited by a middle east country or faction. The note is known as "super K". The U.S. General Accounting Office in 1996 issued a report in February of 1996, mentioning this note is also known as the "Supernote" or the "Superbill" and is referred to as the "C-14342 Family" by the Secret Service. The dual uses were to generate money for terrorist activities and to cripple the U.S. economy.
Most counterfeiting by "rebels" was/is done to provide funding for the group and to destroy the economy of the government in power. Examples include:11
The first counterfeited currency?
The first currency made or close to it. The first known currency was printed by China (the inventor of paper) in 650 1. The notes of the Ming dynasty (1368-1644) contained the following clause: "To Counterfeit is death. The informant will receive 250 taels in silver and in addition the entire property of the criminal." The Chinese abolished paper money in 1450, with paper money not reappearing until the Tai Ping Rebellion of 1850's.1
The first counterfeited currency by a foreign power?
The earliest I am aware of is the Duke Galeazzo Sforza of Milan counterfeiting the money of Venice in 14702 .
During the Seven Years' War (1756-63) Austrian and Russian troops marched through Poland, and Frederick the Great flooded the country with counterfeit money.
Napoleon counterfeited Austrian Banco Script notes (in Paris & Italy) in his occupation of Vienna in 1806. Even after Napoleon married Princess Marie Louis of Austria and banned the bogus notes, these fakes circulated. Only the paper tint is different from the original notes 1 .
From 1805 to 1812, he also counterfeited Russian 25 & 50 Ruble notes. It's possible he had British currency counterfeited at the same time.
Britain, for it's part counterfeited United States currency during it's War of Independence (1776). Britain copied far greater numbers of French Assignats in the 1790's. While at war with both countries when the forgeries occurred, the slaying of the King of France was deemed far more outrageous by all the royal courts of Europe, including England. The future Charles X of France was directly involved in this huge operation. The Assignats were backed by the church lands nationalized by France, some 10% of the total area of the country. Even so, a 100 Livres note dropped to 15 Sous when withdrawn (0.15% of value).
The most types of counterfeited currency by a nation?
Probably the Confederate States of America, with twenty-seven different issues counterfeited, according to Confederate Collector's Page
Napoleonic Wars (1795-1815)
United States Civil War (1861-1865)
Spanish-American War (1898)
Irish - English Conflict (1905-)
Mexican Revolution (1910-1920)
Russian Revolution (1917-1918)
World War I (1914-1919)
Between World Wars
World War II (1939-1945)
Cold War (1946-1992)
Korean War (1950-1953)
Bay of Pigs - Cuba (1961)
Vietnam War (1946-1973
Iran Revolution (1978-1979)
Grenada Invasion (1983)
Gulf War (1991)
Yugoslavian War (1991-2000)
United States - War of Terrorism (2001-Present)
"Not worth a Continental" saying came into being, thanks in part to Great Britain producing counterfeit United States Continental currency. By 1777, counterfeit Continentals were being produced in England, by Tory allies of the British forces in New York and even on Royal Navy ships moored in the Hudson River, thus undermining the currency.15
As is often the case the official issuer of the notes (the United States in this case) produced far more notes than it could back with real worth. Here's an example:
Here's possible $3 example.
Persons traveling from other colonies would be supplied with any number of counterfeit notes for the purpose of spending them and disrupting the economy. The notes were shown in an advertisement to be available from 11pm to 4am!.13
Here's a fake & real $30 example. The counterfeit was X'ed out by officials.
Here's fake $60 example.
Here's fake $80 example. It was puched cancelled by officials.
To avoid counterfeiting, the colonies used two methods:
These same Continental dollars contain Propaganda themes:
Here's a Maryland Script note with several strong propaganda themes outlined:
1 and 1/3 Dollar.
The Constituent Assembly in France introduced a new form of money called assignats from 1789 to 1796, during the French Revolution, to address imminent bankruptcy. They were backed by the value of properties formerly held by the Catholic Church, which were confiscated. The sales of this property was to be used to repay the money issued as assignats. The British, Belgian, and Swiss heavily counterfeited the assignats. It was reported by Stephen Devalson Dillaye,the American lawyer, author, and politician: "Seventeen manufacturing establishments were in full operation in London, with a force of four hundred men devoted to the production of false and forged Assignats."
The Russian notes Napoleon counterfeited (P-A10x and P-A11x) are much more common than the real notes! Fakes catalog at $650 and $2500.
Fake P-A11x 50 Ruble
(Thanks Ron Wise & Oleg Schulakov
While at siege with Austrian forces in Croatia, Napoleon issued 2 Franc notes dated 1813, P-S140 (P-S101). Does anyone have an example?
As mentioned above, Napoleon counterfeited Austrian and Russian notes. The Austrian Banco Script notes were counterfeited with blue paper. No images are available. Does anyone have any?
Napoleon also counterfeited British pounds. He considered such tactics as unsavory and attempted to keep secret the act. As late as 1852, Napoleon's nephew, Napoleon III paid a large sum to Mille de Martant, daughter of the engraver of the British counterfeits.10
Contemporary counterfeits were printed to feed the demand for souvenirs and to use as money in the south. In many cases, the forged notes were superior in quality to the original Northern printers openly advertised counterfeit Confederate currency for pennies on the dollar. On May 1, 1865, the last day that Confederate currency was traded in the official currency exchanges, the Confederate paper dollar was worth 0.00083 cents in gold. That's 120,482 Confederate dollars to $1 in gold!
One of the most prolific was printed in Havana, Cuba. Pick mentions a P72, 100 Dollars Confederate States of America bill with plate letter D being a "Havana Counterfeit". This is probably the most popular counterfeit Confederate note. The counterfeit is easy to detect, with differences in the details of the soldiers and the lack of refinement of in the counterfeit's portrait of Lucy Pickens.
Here's a Havana $50.P-37 Here's a Havana $100.P-72 Here's a genuine $100.P-71
Here's examples of a Northern printer, Sam Upham of Philadelphia.
2 Dollars 5 DollarsP-14 10 DollarsP-21 100 DollarsP-38
The last fake note is spotted by counting the spokes in the back left wheel. The genuine note has 7, Upham's has 10.
Upham openly sold copies of confederate notes and Shinplasters for 5 cents each as a "memento of the Rebellion". The U.S. government made no efforts the stop this practice. Here is a real and "FAC-SIMILE" example.
ALL KNOWN COUNTERFEITS:
During the Spanish-American War (21 April 1898 - 13 August
1898), the United States compelled the National Bank Note
Company in New York to reprint these notes using the original
plates and paper in an attempt to disrupt the Cuban economy.
These unauthorized notes are indistinguishable from the legitimate
earlier issues, except they bear fabricated signatures of fictional
officials. Illegitimate notes discovered by the Spanish authorities
were overprinted INUTILIZADO (unusable).
The notes involved were Banco Español de la Habana P 11 5 Pesos, P12 10 Pesos, ,P13 25 Pesos, P15 100 Pesos, P16 300 Pesos, P17 500 Pesos, and P18 1,000 Pesos.
To support their efforts to free Ireland from England, these "Fenian Pound" notes were produced, dated 1866, with a vignette of Theobald Wolfe Tone, the originator of the United Irishmen. The note says in part, "Five Dollars, redeemable...after the acknowledgement of the Independence of the Irish Nation at the Treasury of the Irish Republic”. It is signed by John O'Mahoney, founder of the Irish revolutionaries.
Both the Loyalists (Carranza) and Revolutionaries (Villistas etal.) counterfeited currency to destabilize the opposing faction. Another technique used was to simply declare legitimate notes as invalid. Here's a real 20 Pesos note from the Banco Minero overstamped "FALSO" to invalidate it as an example.
A counterfeit Pancho Villa note follows, thanks to Crutch Williams. Be sure to check his site out at Crutchfield's Currency..
J.D. "Dave" Watson discusses and shows the geniune and counterfeit features for Villa notes of this period in his online catalog The Chihuahua Paper Money of General Francisco "Pancho" Villa 1913 - 1915. This link jumps to the counterfeit section. The entire catalog is worth a look (pouring over in my case!).
Another tactic is to mark opposing governments genuine notes as counterfeit. This causes at least a drop in confidence of the currency and can destabalize the economy.
There are several anti-Communist White Russian Army
overprints used during the Russian Revolution, with a number of
different values and overprints. An image and translation follows:
1000 Rubles.Pick 953 .
Russian General Denikin produced notes of 50 Karbovantiv denomination while warring in the Ukraines. This series of notes was already circulating in Ukraine and Denikin simply produced the same notes, with series 210 and up. The Ukraines declared the notes fake and stamped many of these as so. Here's an example of this note from Ron Wise's great web site, the note donated by Oleg Schulakov:
Real P-6a 50 Karbovantsiv (1918)
Fake P-6b 50 Karbovantsiv (1918)
With the revolution over, Joseph Stalin had U.S. $100 counterfeited to raise hard currency. The paper was so difficult to reproduce, the Russians bleached lower denomination U.S. notes, the printed the $100 forged engraving on them. To distribute the notes, Stalin commissioned American gangsters to disperse the money, offering a 30% discount. When the gangsters discovered the notes were fake, not "dirty" money from illegal operations, they surrendered $40,000 to authorities.10
Both German Marks and American Dollars were counterfeited, then fenced through a secretly purchased Berlin bank.11
England used captured printing plates dated AH1334 (1916) to copy these 10 Pound notes from Turkey. The notes were never released, and found their way to a currency exchange house between 1925 and 1935. The reason they were never released is the British printed the "10" inside a siz-pointed star on the left border facing outside, rather than inside like the remaining sides. The simplest inspection would catch this mistake. Here is a closup of this error 10 Pound note error. They did not resurface until 1987, finding their way into numismatic circles.
The biography of Royal Marine Lieutenant-Colonel Maurice Hankey, based on his diary indicates Great Britain forged German 20 Mark notes. This was probaly done by Waterlow & Company at their Watford plant. Certainly counterfeit German stamps have surfaced with tiny letters bearing "Printed in Watford". The 20 Mark notes have only been observed at auction once or twice, indicating either few forged notes made or at least disseminated.
The Germans counterfeited the Imperial Bank of Canada’s $100 banknote presumably to undermine Canada’s financial system. According to Joseph Boling’s March 12, 2012 presentation to the Chicago Coin Club entitled Official Counterfeiting of Paper Currency, “The counterfeit $100 Imperial Bank of Canada circulated in the Middle East, and became known in Canada in the 1920s. The paper does not feel right on this intaglio item of middle quality — the intaglio is shallow, and all pieces seen in the numismatic market have a Persian bank stamp (the Imperial Bank of Resht in northwest Iran, on the Caspian).” The banknote is repeatedly overprinted with “COUNTERFEIT” and twice perforated with “VOID” above the signature areas.
View this $100 front here View this $100 back here
The communists overprinted a German inflation note, a partial translation being
"Think of 1914-1923! The Nazis want war and "reflecting keeping" thus inflation!
I can't read all the next line. View this 1000 Mark here
The town of Essen released the folowing 10 Millionen Ruhrtaler, protesting the occupation of the Ruhr area by France and Belgium.
Note Belgium, represented by the figure with the sword in one hand and money in the other, with his foot on the throat of the German. The reverse shows a poor German family leaving the area with only what they can carry on a cart. View this 10 Millionen Ruhrtaler here
The Nazis overprinted a German inflation note, the translation being "Do not buy from Jews!
View this 1000 Mark here
The Nazis overprinted the same German inflation note, the translation being "The Jew takes our Gold, Silver, and bacon and leaves us this crap...come to Hitler, become a National Socialist"
View this 1000 Mark here
Did the Nazis know Jewish religion considers pig meat not Kosher, thus do not eat?
The Völkisch-Social Bloc ("Völkisch-Sozialer Block" or "Völkisch-Sozialer-Block" or "VSB" or "V-S-B") was a right-wing electoral alliance in post World War I Germany. Its philosophy was loosely aligned with that of the NSDAP (Nazi Party). A 500 Mark note with Jews hanged and a translation of the propaganda is here..
The town of Essen released the folowing 10 Millionen Ruhrtaler, protesting the occupation of the Ruhr area by France and Belgium.
Note Belgium, represented by the figure with the sword in one hand and money in the other, with his foot on the throat of the German. The reverse shows a poor German family leaving the area with only what they can carry on a cart. View this 10 Millionen Ruhrtaler here
In 1926 several people were arrested in the Netherlands while attempting to procure 10 million francs worth of fake French 1000-franc bills which had been produced in Hungary; after 3 years, the state-sponsored industrial scale counterfeit operation had finally collapsed. The League of Nations' investigation found Hungary's motives were to avenge its post-WWI territorial losses and to use profits from the counterfeiting business to boost a militarist, border-revisionist ideology. Germany and Austria had an active role in the conspiracy, which required special machinery. The quality of fake bills was still substandard however, due to France's use of exotic raw paper material imported from its colonies.
Canada produced 10 Reichsmark notes for use in Canada! The "notes" were used in Winnipeg in February 1942 as a fundraiser for war bonds. An image and translation follow:
The largest and famous use of counterfeiting was the German project called Operation Bernhard. This was a continuation of "Operation Andrew" or "Andreas", which also copied British currency. It is curious to note these counterfeits were conceived by an SS officer named Alfred Helmut Naujocks. The curious part is that Najocks came up with the idea by noting the British near-perfect counterfeits of German auxiliary certificates of payment 50 Reichsfenning notes! See the British section for more on this note. When Germany rescued Mussolini from his captors the operation was paid for using forged British bank notes! The near perfect doubles of Bernhard caused England to remove the notes from circulation and replace with a different series notes. It is estimated over 40% of the circulating British notes were counterfeits, with 100,000,000 Pounds counterfeited. The only clear way to distinguish these notes from the original is in the watermark. In the original the line into the bottom N of England is slightly offset. In the German copy, this "error" has been corrected & the line runs into the middle of the Bottom N of England.
Here's a 5 pound note example. Here's a 10 pound note example. Here's a 20 pound note example. Here's a 50 pound note example.
No images available here of the few 100, 500, or 1000 Pound notes counterfeited. The 5 Pound notes represented 40% of the production, with 20% each for the 10-50 Pound notes.
These notes were first distributed through Italy, Switzerland, Portugal, Spain, Yugoslavia, and Sweden. The original plan to flood Britain with the fakes by air drops was changed due to the loss of the air Battle of Britain and the need for hard currency for espionage.10
Due to the German Minister of Economics refusal to have anything to do with the operation, the group counterfeited its own German occupation notes! The notes were used to buy arms from Yugoslav partisans, who were supplied the arms by the allies.11
Even before the British notes were counterfeited, the same workshops in Sachsenhausen had counterfeited Yugoslav partisan currency for about three weeks. Its chief was SS Sturmbannfuhrer (Major) Bernhard Kruger, for whom the Operation Bernhard was named. Does anyone have an example of these?
By December 1944, passable U.S. $100 notes started to be produced. When over-run by the Allied troops, U.S. Major George McNally (ex Secret Service) estimated 6,000 notes were produced. Interviews with the prisoners put the number at 200.10
Palestine 5 Pound noteswere copied for use as currency to pay spies and operations in the area. Enough of these notes were made that Pick values the counterfeits at less than half the originals. Since demand and availability are the main criteria for valuations, this points to a significant number of fakes.
Germany produced three 1 Pound notes photographically for North Africa with different Arabic messages on the reverse. These were air dropped over Alexandria and Cairo in November and December of 1942.
A fourth 1 Pound note was produced with the serial number C 78 A 419669 that was air dropped over North Africa (Tunisia, April 1943) and is printed on authentic wartime paper. On the reverse in Arabic text translates as:
The time has come for you to fight the criminal Anglo-Americans and their agents, the Jews. Announce your revolt against them. Fight them. Don't let them achieve their goals. Deny your enemies all hope. The result will be that you have obeyed the commandments of Allah the Omniscient. You will have liberated the beloved nation from those thieves. Remember, the Anglo-Americans hate you just as much as the Jews. Beware of their propaganda. Don't trust their promises. Do not be deceived by the money they offer to pay for your help, or afterwards you and your children will be given to the Jews as spoils of war.
Later in 1943, Germany again used 1 Pound note images on the front and back of a propaganda book and dropped these over Yugoslavia. The back shows a map of Sicily and the lower section of Italy. There is a hand pointing at the Allied bases in this area.
In 1944 in nearby Croatia, the Germans counterfeited notes and air dropped these by the Luftwaffe, Pick P-S212 (P-M9) with a message on the reverse. Here is the 10 Lir, note with translation
Germany wanted Austria to become part of Germany. To convince the Austrians, Germany used many forms of propaganda, including:
Later in the war when the Soviet Union occupied Hungary, Germany counterfeited Soviet occupation money for Hungary. An anti-Soviet topic is on the reverse. The message follows: "It is only a piece of paper. It is not good for anything, just like the one that the Red Army's authority hands out to the people of the occupied Hungarian land...5 "
100 Pengo, P-M8
The Germans used two different anti-Allied forces messages on France 5 Franc occupation notes5 .
In addition, the Germans printed another 9 leaflets that illustrate the 5f note with various propaganda texts above and below. These make references to massacres, betrayal at Dunkirk, and using French children as cannon fodder as examples.. No image is available. DOES ANYBODY HAVE THIS EXAMPLE?
Many hundreds of different German and Austrian notes exist with Anti-Semitic messages added. While there is an article in "The Shekel" and the I.B.N.S. Journal (both penned by Herb F!) on this subject, many varieties are not cataloged. Here's some examples with translation:
Germany copied 1920-29 Yugoslavia 100 Dinar notes in January 1944 as safe conduct passes for the Russian troops and Partisans in this theatre of operation. 100 Partisans are offered food and freedom by presenting the safe conduct pass and their weapons. There are two varieties known. No images are available. DOES ANYONE HAVE A SAMPLE?
Germany also copied United States notes, including the following:
The Political Intelligence Department of the British Foreign Office also made a parody of a 1940 50 Francs note of France, called "Code 90". The date (where the serial number goes) is 23-6-1940, the day General de Gaulle announced the formation of a French National Committee to continue fighting Germany. "Le Caisier Gernal" is replaced by "Le traitre Laval" or "the traitor Laval" and "Le Secretaire General" is replaced with ""L'espion Abetz" or "the pay Abetz". There are two small smiling caricatures of Hitler and Laval at the top of the columns on the left and right under the value "50". At the bottom reads "To the plundering Boche, nothing is impossible." in French. The notes were dropped by balloons from June 10-13, 1941. The notes seen with a hole on the left margin were dropped by balloons, while those without were dropped by airplanes. A complete translation is here .
The British copied the German auxiliary certificates of payment 50 Reichsfennig notes, then typed four known messages on the reverse.
The British Army produced a blue photocopy propaganda note of the Malaya JIM 10 dollar note from the psychological warfare division in Calcutta, India. The face of the leaflet is a blue photocopy of an original note with a bold diagonal stripe containing part of the message. The back is printed in red with the propaganda message in High Malay, Union Malay, and Chinese with the identification number SMA/39. The image and translation arehere. The leaflet was printed by the British psychological warfare division in Calcutta. valued at $30 - Fine , $50 - XF, and $75 - Unc8 . Thanks Monte for this image! An XF/AU condition note sold on auction for $510 on July 1, 2003.
Notes from Thailand were counterfeited, reprinted from original plates by the printer, Thomas De La Rue8 .
The British counterfeited Burmese money as well. One million 10 Rupee and 200,000 1 Rupee notes were ordered, with an additional one million 1 Rupee notes requested later, though it is not know if these were produced or distributed.
The Allies copied a 5 Rupee note, with 2 messages in Burmese on the reverse:
The British made rather crude 500 Yuan notes of the Central Reserve Bank of China and dropped tons of these on Shanghai in 1943. This accomplished two things - Japan to lose face (generally more important for Orientals) and problems with the local merchants questioning even the legitimate notes. No images are available.
Schwan and Boling convey information of counterfeited note of China. When Japan captured Hong Kong, the private printer Chung Hoa Book Company and the plates to Central Bank of China and Bank of Communications were captured as well. The plates captured and used in Tokyo include:
Japan forged 1, 5, 10, and 100 Rupee notes of India on a wide scale to destabilize the Indian Currency system. Many, perhaps most were caught by banks in Rangoon and Calcutta. A trade route from Rangoon to Calcutta through the Bay of Bengal from British Burma existed which probably was used to facilitate the exchange.
Here's a 1 Rupee. genuine note.
In the Philippines Japan would severally punish locals caught with guerrilla currency, including torture and/or death. This is because the currency helped support the guerrilla forces. There are notable exceptions in which large amounts of local currency was captured, but dumped on the local market. At the end of the war, the Philippines government, except these “illegal” issues, redeemed the sanctioned notes. Series numbers determined most “illegal” notes. They include:
In August 1944 the Soviet Army reached the outskirts of Warsaw and called on the Polish home army to rise. The Poles under General Tadeusz Komorowski struck at the occupations forces assuming that they would be supported by the Soviets; but, as soon as the Polish insurrection had begun, the Russian advance stopped. No help was forthcoming. U.S. and British air forces improvised an aerial supply line but their help was insufficient. After more than sixty days of resistance, the home army capitulated and Warsaw was nearly leveled.
During the uprising the Warsaw rebels put into circulation notes of the Bank Emisyjny w Polsce with a square overstamp. The stamp is found in nine varieties, three of which are translated here on four notes.
Many thanks to ATSnotes.com for taking the time to scan four of the following important historical notes from their world currency inventory for sale. Thanks Anna!
1 Zloty. 2 Zloty. 10 Zloty. 50 Zloty. 100 Zloty. 100 Zloty.14 Here's another 10 Zloty. with a different overstamp.
The Germans used the note to distribute propaganda messages. The resistance fighters retaliated in kind by applying anti-German propaganda messages to some notes. DOES ANYONE HAVE THESE NOTES OR IMAGES?
The United States printed 10 Yen notes of Japan with the message on the reverse. Here are images and message translations:
These are listed as P40z, valued at $35 in VF condition2 .
Soon after the liberation of the Philippines by the Allies a quantity of the Rizal Monument 10 Peso JIM notes was discovered at the bank at Tacloban. A propaganda message was overprinted on the backs of these notes for distribution in other areas. The message "THE CO-PROSPERITY SPHERE: WHAT IS IT WORTH?" was intended to undermine Japan's claim to have united the Asian peoples. Few were printed, since General Macarthur was fearful of the notes being passed as real and vetoed the operation. The original notes have well-printed overprints in reddish purple which is flat on the paper, just like the original lithographed inks. The ink is well soaked into the banknote paper, unlike the fakes make for collectors. No rubber stamps were used for original overprints. At least three different type faces were used on the genuine overprints, printed locally in the Philippines. Fakes have thick, bright ink that has a silk-screened look. The best indication of a fake overprint is the "?". On the fake, the "?" is printed slightly higher than the "H" beside it, while the original "?" is flush even with the "H". Fakes and originals have now been found on the following notes.
The United States counterfeited at least 110,000 10 Rupee Burma notes for use as payments for spy operations. This is in addition to the notes produced by Great Britain for the area.
10 Dollar Japanese Invasion Money for Malaya were also counterfeited by the United States Office of Strategic Services. It's estimated at least 50,000 notes were produced and shipped.
Here's a 10 Dollarsexample. Real note above, OSS counterfeit below.
The United States and Great Britain counterfeited Japanese invasion money (JIM) for the Philippines and Burma, using the fake notes for payments for spy operations and to undermine the local economy.
Here's a 1000 Dollarsexample.
The United States counterfeited 10 million pesos of Philippines Invasion money of the following denominations:
There exists a counterfeit 5 Rupees JIM note, with the reverse having anti-Japanese remarks written in Kachin. These were dropped on this hill tribe in northern Burma7.
Counterfeited 10 Rupee notes are attributed to the United States7 .
10 Marks note of 1929 (still circulating during the war) proclaims."Throw off your chains" and "the people will be protected" in German.
Cold War Examples
The Communist Party in Austria prepared two parodies of the 100 schilling Oesterreichische Nationalbank note of 1949. The parodies are identical on the front, but differ on the back in both message and format. One has the propaganda message horizontally while the other has it vertically. These leaflets, dated 22 February 1953, were produced by the Wahlgemeinschaft Oesterreichische Volksopposition (People's Opposition). The Communists had called themselves Linksblock (Left-wing bloc) during the 1949 elections, but changed their name to the more acceptable "People's Opposition" during the 1953 elections. No matter what the name, the Austrian people showed little interest, giving the Communists just 4 of 165 seats in their Nationalrat (Parliament).The horizontally oriented note message attacks the inflation allegedly brought on by the party in power.. The image and translation are here.
Auckland shows an example of an East German 20 Mark note with a diagonal section on both sides with a propaganda message. These were spread in 1953 by ballons, mail, throwning from moving trains, and small rockets. The serial number - "F17653" reflects the start of the East German uprisings in June 17, 1953. The German version has many puns and double meanings.7. Images and translations here
The same 20 Mark note with the reverse having anti-Communist propaganda printed in German and Russian by NTS, a group similar to Radio Free Europe is also known. In Russian, NTS stands for National Alliance of Russian Solidarity. At least two versions of this note exist 7.
The UN forces dropped two billion plus (2,000,000,000) leaflets on North Korea and areas held by North Korean forces. Most were 4" X 5" and 5" X 8" leaflets. At it's height, the UN made 20 million leaflets per week. Methods of deployment included airdrops (loose, baled, and in bombs). The bombs were known as M16-A1 Cluster Adapter and held up to 45,000 leaflets each.
The United States printed a UN sponsored Safe Conduct Certificate in three languages on the reverse of a North Korea 100 Won note. Three varieties exist, signed by Generals Ridgway, Clark, and van Fleet. The image may be viewed here.
The last US General van Fleet had a different safe conduct pass, only resembling a currency note, signing himself Commanding General, UN Forces in Korea (He commanded the US 8th Army only.) The image is here.
Another note-like Safe Conduct Pass has the instructions in both Korean only, viewed here.
Included now is a note not counterfeited that really isn't a note. The North Koreans captured a note prepared in the USA for use by South Korea during the war. It was circulated by them in 1950 to disrupt the economy, but was never officially released... There are enough of these around to have a Pick number,
P-3 1000 Won.
Seoul’s War Memorial Museum reportedly contains DPRK (North Korea) manufactured South
Korean currency from the 1950’s, the production of which reportedly continued into the 1960s.
Since the invasion of Cuba at the Bay of Pigs by CIA backed Cubans was a covert operation, supposed "locals", flashing gold or foreign currency was deemed too noticeable. With relation’s non-existent with the Castro regime and not wanting to alert Castro, fake notes were printed for the invasion force of about 1200. These all bear series F69 and F70. All this secrecy was of course for not, with Castro waiting for the invasion. The note forged, a 20 Peso note, depicts Camilo Cienfuegos on the front and troops in the jungle on reverse. Cienfuegos died in a mysterious plane crash soon after the Cuban Revolution. There has always been speculation as to whether the CIA or Castro was behind his death. (Thanks Jerry for the information on Cienfuegos!) Here are both examples available:
f69 series f70 seires
Before the Shah Muhammad Riza Pahlavi was openly criticized by the Shi'i Muslems, the prime minister, Muhammad Musaddiq, was overthrown with American aid. Musaddiq had been governing with unlimited power for some time, and had been propagating for the Shah to be deposed. This move kept the Shah in power, as a Constitutional Monarch, until 1978. The Shi'i smuggled music cassettes critical to the Shah into Iran, which were then copied profusely.
Here are two "notes" Ayatollah Khomeini supporters produced to promote their cause.
5,000 Rial 10,000 Rial
While four leaflets were dropped prior to the U.S. invasion of Grenada called Operation Urgent Fury, a leaflet similar to the Cuba P-103 note was prepared, but apparently not disseminated..5
The Safe Conduct Pass intended for Cuban troops image and translation follow.
Before the United States entered the Vietnam War, France had fought the communist government. The French pushed the communists out of the South and tried to negotiate a settlement with Ho Chi Min but war broke out in December 1946. Over the next eight years, as the French tried to hold on to their Vietnamese colony, leaflets were used by both sides to support their armed forces and win the cooperation of the civilian population. The French used them to ridicule and undermine Ho Chi Min's currency. The translation for the following note says "Ho Chi Min's money is worthless. It holds no international value". The front of the note shows a drawing suggesting a use for Min's money.
50 Dong, P-61b
Thanks to Rod Oakland for this information and image. Find much in depth propaganda and history at Rod's web site, The Vietnam Wars.
The Viet Cong also used propaganda.
My thanks to cgb.fr Numismatic for the image and translation of this P60 1 Piastre note. The French Communist Party circulated this note in France only, attempting to influence the French to leave Viet Nam alone. View the note for a link to this French site with over 87,000 images of notes and coins.
Here's a 5 Piastre, P-55 note stating "Overthrow Bao Dai - Support Ho Chi Minh". Thanks to Coins and Banknotes of Vietnam and French Indochina for the image and translation.
Over 50 billion leaflets were distributed by the United States during the Vietnam War by several US agencies, more than 1,500 for every citizen of North and South Vietnam.
The first U.S. attempts at a currency type leaflet was a North Vietnam 50 Dong reverse has the following message on the reverse: "Participate in the Three Readies".
The United States issued Safe Conduct Passes asking North Vietnamese and Viet Cong why they were fighting with their families waiting for them at home. To add to the thought planted with words, the front of the 5 Dong note was altered, adding a wife with baby in arms. The wife is waving the returning soldier-father home.
5 Dong, P-13 Actual note.
5 Dong, P-13X Counterfeit propaganda note with translation. 5 Million of these excellent reproductions were printed. An additional 2.5 Million were printed in the Philippines with red-brown color on thinner paper. It is thought the first series, while effective propaganda, with many VCs defecting also caused commerce problems with many passed as real notes8 . Thanks again to Coins and Banknotes of Vietnam and French Indochina for the improved high-resolution image!
A double use note depicts cattle on one side and a monument on the reverse of this 1 Dong, P-71X note. Thanks again Coins and banknotes of Vietnam and French Indochina for these images. There were six varieties:
Another double use note depicts patriots holding a North Vietnam flag on the 2 Dong note . These are P72x notes with code 4541. The message is the same as the 1 dong 4543 leaflets. Thanks again Coins and banknotes of Vietnam and French Indochina.
The image and translation of yet another double use strip propaganda note depicts Ho Chi Minh on this North Vietnam, P-73x 5 Dong note .
How many of these passed as real currency, with the strip cutoff is unknown, though the version with strip still attached is harder to locate.
The Viet Cong produced promissory notes to give villagers when they took rice, etc. Auckland states the 1000 Dong notes were counterfeited and dropped by propagandists of the Republic of South Vietnam over Viet Cong controlled areas7 . Herbert Freidman states the American Psyops Specialist were thus not aware of the note when it was brought to their attention8 . The reverse says: "Ho Chi Minh money. Viet Cong support Bonds are worthless trash. Do not use Ho Chi Minh money. Boycott Viet Cong Troop Support Bonds to safeguard your own interests and property. Down with the Viet Cong's looting of the people's money and property through the use of public bonds". No images of this note are available. Check the links page for a link to the Psywar Society.
Herbert Friedman again from his article titled "Vietnam War Propaganda Notes" mentions a forged Laos 200 Kip note The Pahet Lao issued this and other notes in areas they gained control over. This copy, Pick 23Ax (R5) note was made by the prior anti-communist Laotian government. The note is identical to the original, except a portrait of Ho Chi Minh replaces Lao temple. By releasing these notes, the hope was the locals and more importantly to misinform these locals that the “liberated” areas had fallen into the hands of the Vietnamese would deem the Pathet Lao money worthless.
Here's the genuine note (P23Aa) 200 Kip, P23A
Here's the counterfeit note:
Counterfeit 200 Kip
Here's a parody of the same note prepared by the U.S., leaflet 31: 200 Kip, P23A
The front translates: This currency is counterfeit and has no value – it cannot be used
The back is all text:
The communists have printed this fake currency. This currency has no value at all.
It cannot be used in exchange for other currency.
The communists force people to distribute the fake currency for them.
People who are not educated and don’t know the rules of law and are asked to deliver the currency. The government warns, “Do not accept it or be tricked by the communists.”
Anyone who receives or is asked to distribute the currency should notify the local Police Chief.
The whole Lao citizenry hates the fake money and the communists who print and distribute the fake money. The next generation will inherit the problem.
This same article chronicles a South Vietnam note of , which saw much circulation in the back-country. Whether these were produced by Viet Cong insurgents for use as money or not was not know in 1983. Any new revelations? Here is the genuine note: 20 Dong, P6
The Fourth Psyop Group in Saudi Arabia initially produced four counterfeit propaganda notes, using the 25 Dinar front the northern area used. With Arab concerns over the images being too similar to the originals, the images were blurred to avoid confusion with real notes. These notes were never released and are quite difficult to find. IF ANYONE HAS ANY IMAGES, I WOULD BE GLAD TO INLUDE THEM HERE. The four abandoned leaflets translations follow. The code numbers used are from Richard D. Johnson's book9.
The United States 4th Psychological Operations Group had a detachment in Turkey, which also printed the series of Iraq 25 Dinar propaganda notes used in the northern area bordering Turkey.
Here is the front of all the propaganda leaflets.
In 1991 as part of an alleged covert CIA operation, five additional 25-dinar leaflets were prepared of thin Bible paper as a tool in quantity against the Iraqi establishment. This series was designed against the Iraqi Dictator Saddam Hussein and are extremely rare. These leaflets are extremely rare, prices of these leaflets between $100 and $150 each. The four leaflets, measure 3 inches by 5.95 inches and bear serial number 0342845. The following are images and translations:
The UN issued a "Wanted" leaflets, offering a reward for capture of Slobodan Milosevic and other war criminals. The image of one U.S. $50 note with $5 Million reward leaflet shows Slobadan Milosevic, Radovan Karadzic, and Dusan Tadic. The note was featured in a New York Times article on propaganda.
As recently as March 2002, a leaflet with Radovan Karadzic was dropped by helicopters in the area assumed to hold Karadzic in Bosnia and Montenegro. The war crimes fugitive Karadzic was indicted twice by the U.N. war crimes tribunal for the 1995 Srebrenica massacre of up to 8,000 Muslim's and genocide during the Sarajevo siege. The leaflet also offers U.S. $5 Million dollor reward, with the reverse of a Bosnia P-67 note.
P67 Like Leaflet
The following use a new U.S. $50 note front image. All are folded into 1/8ths, with the note section exposed. All offer rewards of $5,000,000.
A copy of the 10,000 Afghanis P63 note exist with added propaganda text in both normal and enlarged size.5 Afghans were given what appeared to be an enlarged copy of a 10,000 Afghanis banknote. On the front the figure "150,000,000" was overprinted over the 10,000. The reward amounting to over 4,000 US dollars, would be paid to any citizen who aided in the capture of Taliban or al-Qaida fighters. The notes were circulated around the Shah-i-Kot Valley and Gardez in Paktia Province.
Large 10,000 Afghanis Here's the image and text message.
The second normal sized note with the 150,000,000 overprint was dropped from a C-130 transport. It is not clear whether the notes were copies or genuine.
Afghanistan P63 overprint
In 2006, a Pakistani government printing press in the city of Quetta was accused of churning out large quantities of counterfeit Indian bank notes. The Times of India reported this scandal, based on Central Bureau of Intelligence investigation. The money was allegedly used to fund terrorist activities inside India, the recent blasts in Mumbai being funded using this fake currency.
North Korean officials have been caught distributing counterfeit U.S, $100 bills in Cambodia, Russia, Macao, and Mongolia. The regime is believed to produce some of the world's best bogus currency with the same model press used by the U.S. Bureau of Engraving and Printing.
Another source of "super notes" is Syria:
Oct 15, 1995: Fake $100 bills believed coming from Syria or Lebanon WASHINGTON (AP) -- High-quality, counterfeit $100 bills, believed made in Syria or Lebanon, have become so common throughout the former Soviet Union, Europe and the Far East that banks increasingly won't accept the big U.S. bills. The New Yorker reported in its Oct. 23 issue that U.S. officials suspect the counterfeiters may be trying to destabilize the U.S. economy. U.S. Treasury officials have played down the reports because of fears they could shake confidence in American currency. The State Department believes that Syria's military is protecting the counterfeiting ring, the magazine said The same note used in the Gulf War has been counterfeited on a large scale to be passed as real currency. As much as eight billion fakeIraqi Dinar have been smuggled into Cambodia over the past year from Thailand and are now in storage as efforts are made to convert them to a usable currency. The arrival of the cash, and promises of handsome commissions to anyone able to exchange it for US dollars, prompted a frenzy among officials to be the first to secure the deal.