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Fjordman: What is Wrong With Western Elites?

Posted by paulipoldie on November 2, 2011

Monday, October 31, 2011

What is Wrong With Western Elites?

Below is Fjordman’s latest essay. For a complete archive of his writings, see the multi-index listing in the Fjordman Files.

Libya’s autocratic ruler Muammar Qaddafi was brutally tortured and killed on 20 October 2011 after France, Britain, the USA and NATO had actively given military support to rebel troops that were known to include groups with ties to terrorist organizations like al-Qaeda.

As writer Diana West said, “Qaddafi was not killed in retaliation for his attacks on American servicemen in Berlin in 1986, or the downing of Pan Am 103 over Lockerbie in 1989. He was not killed for his central role in the USSR’s terror networks going back to the 1960s and 1970s. He was killed after coming over to our side of George Bush’s ‘war on terror’ in the final phase of a civil war in Libya in which his regime fought al Qaeda affiliates. Horrific as it sounds, Qaddafi was killed because we and our NATO allies joined the other side.”

In February 2011, a day before he quit as Egypt’s president after popular uprisings, Hosni Mubarak had harsh words for his former allies in the United States and their misguided quest for democracy in the Middle East. “They may be talking about democracy but they don’t know what they’re talking about and the result will be extremism and radical Islam.”

Mubarak during his three decades in power kept stability in Egypt, peace with its neighbors including Israel and promoted decent economic progress in his country without being cruel. Despite this, the USA quickly turned its back on him when protests began. The Muslim Brotherhood has since gained in strength, and attacks on Coptic Christians have escalated.

Sayyid Qutb (1906-1966) from the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood was with his writings among the inspirations for the Jihadists terrorists from al-Qaeda who killed three thousand Americans on September 11th 2001. A decade later, President Obama and his Administration are actively aiding the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt and elsewhere to gain more influence.

Many ordinary citizens, when witnessing our so-called leaders supporting our enemies, wonder whether Western political elites have lost their grip on reality. What are they trying to achieve with such stupid and suicidal policies? Why do they want to export democracy to Islamic countries, even if this brings radical organizations with hostile agendas to power, at the same time as the democratic system is being de facto abolished in Europe by the European Union?

My personal view is that the cultural, economic and especially immigration policies currently promoted by the ruling elites throughout virtually the entire Western world are harmful to the long-term interests of the European peoples who created this civilization. One fundamental question that has been hotly debated on the Internet by dissident writers is whether this trend is entirely accidental, and exclusively reflects the purely impersonal forces of technological globalization, or whether there is also a purpose and a plan behind some of these changes.

I believe that there is also an intentional plan of breaking down Western nation-states behind this trend. This is demonstrated by the statements of some key actors, by the all-pervasive (in the Western world at least) indoctrination with non-European “diversity” as well as by the systematic demonization and ridicule of all traditional practices, cultural symbols and national flags. The arguments, or rather lies, presented in favor of continued mass immigration and Multiculturalism are remarkably similar in all Western countries, too similar to be entirely coincidental.

The question is: Why? And what do those promoting such policies hope to achieve?

It is important to realize that this does not necessarily rule out other possible explanations, which may supplement rather than contradict the previous claim. It is undoubtedly true that modern Western technology has created a far more integrated world than existed in the past.

One could also successfully argue that there are deep underlying structures and ideas in Western culture and mentality at work here, too, for instance the concept of “universal egalitarianism” that could be found already in Greco-Roman Antiquity, and especially in Christianity. This was secularized after the Enlightenment in the form of human rights. Present-day Globalists, regardless of whether they come in a Socialist or a capitalist shape, can exploit these ideals.

Finally, there is no doubt that many people vote for open-border Globalists of their own free will. For example, I have been severely critical of the British government of Tony Blair, but we should remember that Blair with his Labour Party won no less than three elections in a row. Some of this can be attributed to media censorship and decades of indoctrination plus the mass importation of a new electorate in the form of immigrants who tend to vote for Socialist parties which give them access to more welfare payments. Some of it, maybe, but not all of it.

No matter how we twist this, the fact remains that tens of millions of Westerners have more or less freely voted for parties that insult and dispossess them and rob them of their heritage. We have become decadent, indifferent consumers who live only for the here and now, cut off from our historical roots and with little regard for the future of our nation. Far too often, we care little for what will happen 50-100 years from now as long as we can still personally enjoy a steady supply of material comforts and new electronic toys plus football and sex on TV.

My good friend Ohmyrus, an Asian essayist, has convincingly argued that one of the factors behind the booming budget deficits we can now observe in many Western countries plus Japan may be the short-term focus inherent to the democratic system, where people prefer short-term gain now at the price of long-term pain later and vote themselves into possession of other people’s money. Not enough of them think longer than a couple of election cycles — maybe ten years — ahead. History-conscious peoples who come from non-democratic cultures, for instance the Chinese, seem to find it easier to plan in terms of generations and centuries.

On top of this, the good components that a democracy may contain have ironically also been undermined by hollowing out this system from above through international organizations, which in many cases promote harmful policies even when the majority does not want this.

In 2009 it was revealed that the ruling Labour Party had purposefully flooded Britain with millions of immigrants without consulting its citizens, in order to socially engineer a “truly Multicultural” country. The huge increases in migrants over the previous twelve years were due in part to a politically motivated attempt to radically change the country and to “rub the Right’s nose in diversity,” if you believe Andrew Neather, a former adviser to Prime Minister Tony Blair. He said that mass immigration was the result of a deliberate plan, but ministers were reluctant to discuss this openly for fear of alienating the party’s “core working class vote.”

Lord Glasman — a personal friend of the Labour Party leader — in 2011 stated that “Labour lied to people about the extent of immigration… and there’s been a massive rupture of trust.” He admitted that the Labour Party had sometimes been actively hostile to the white natives. In particular, they tended to view white working-class voters as “an obstacle to progress.”

To my knowledge, these shocking revelations of a government launching a full-front attack on its own people — in what could be seen as a policy of ethnic cleansing of a specific national group — did not cause a single word of protest from the political leaders or mass media in any other Western country back then. I have since come to suspect that the reason for this shameful silence is that the authorities in many other Western countries themselves follow roughly similar policies and therefore see nothing wrong in what the British government did.

In 2009, the former left-wing US President Bill Clinton stated publicly that Americans should be mindful of their nation’s rapidly changing demographics, which led to the 2008 election of Obama as president. He told an Arab-American audience that before 2050 the USA will no longer have a majority of people of mainly European descent and claimed that “this is a very positive thing.” This was just a few years after a group of Arab Muslim terrorists had staged the deadliest attack against the US mainland in peacetime, killing thousands of US citizens.

Bill Clinton is himself of European extraction. I have never heard representatives of, say, the Chinese Communist Party brag about the fact that they support displacing their own ethnic group from their own country. Only leaders from the supposedly democratic West do this.

The English philosopher Roger Scruton notes that “buying and selling of citizenship, often to people who think of it purely as a right and never as a duty, is common throughout Europe. The political élite sees nothing wrong in people collecting passports as they might collect memberships of clubs.” He thinks that the Western élite are immune to xenophobia, or fear of foreigners, but instead suffer from a severe case of what he terms oikophobia, the repudiation of home, the urge to denigrate the customs and culture of your own people. “The oikophobe is, in his own eyes, a defender of enlightened universalism against local chauvinism.”

Ibn Khaldun is somewhat overrated compared to other non-European historiographers such as Sima Qian, but the most useful aspect of his writings is the concept of asabiyya, which could be translated as group consciousness. Judged by the above cited examples of Tony Blair and Bill Clinton (numerous others might unfortunately be mentioned here), the ongoing decline of Western civilization can partly be explained as a decline of asabiyya among Western elites, who no longer feel attached to their own peoples but see them as obstacles to be overcome, or silenced through widespread anti-racism campaigns and doctrinal guilt imposed from above.

This does not mean that there is no grassroots support at all for Multiculturalism. Yet support for mass immigration is lukewarm at best among the population as a whole, whereas the ruling elites in politics, media and academia promote it enthusiastically. If anything, this pan-Western disconnect and deficit of trust between rulers and the ruled is growing larger. If unchecked, this widening political chasm threatens to seriously undermine stability in the Western world.
In June 2007, then-British Prime Minister Tony Blair, along with Chancellor (and PM-in-waiting) Gordon Brown and Conservative Party leader (also future PM) David Cameron, met Muslim leaders at a conference organized by the Cambridge Inter-Faith Programme. Blair opened by defending Islam as a religion of “moderation and modernity,” announced a government fund to aid teaching of Islam and to train imams and designated Islamic studies as “strategically important” to the British national interest. Timothy Winter, a lecturer in Islamic Studies at the University of Cambridge, said that “The question facing British society, and society as a whole, is not how we encourage minorities to engage with western countries, but how those countries define themselves as a collage of different religious cultures.”

In other words: Britain, Germany, France, the Netherlands, Italy, Sweden, Ireland, Spain and other Western countries with white majorities are no longer nations with a distinct heritage, only random spaces on the map just waiting to be filled with a “collage of different cultures.”

I could add that North American authorities and mass media are little better than European ones, and sometimes worse. The USA was the first Western country, in 1965, to open its borders to mass immigration from the entire world as a matter of ideological principle. US authorities have been promoting similar policies elsewhere in the Western world ever since.

The concepts of “white privilege” and hostile “Whiteness Studies” were also developed in and spread from the USA. In conflicts between native Europeans and non-native colonizers, US authorities have repeatedly demonstrated that they will go against the interests of the natives.

Former PM Tony Blair showed no regrets when he stated in the fall of 2011 that it is “right” that the country should made up of different cultures and faiths mixed together. That is not to say you don’t encounter problems at certain points, but these “are to be overcome.” Blair added that the anti-immigration debate was now a thing of the past. Sir Andrew Green of Migrationwatch responded that: “This is completely shameless from the Prime Minister who brought more than three million immigrants into Britain in the teeth of public opposition.”

In The Perils of Diversity: Immigration and Human Nature, Byron M. Roth, a Professor Emeritus of Psychology from the USA, argues that the debate over immigration policy in the Western world is critically uninformed by the sciences of evolutionary biology and psychology. A primary thesis of his book is that societies are mainly the product of the genetic nature of the human beings who make them up, not geography, as Jared Diamond claims. He mentions that rising crime has become a serious problem, often committed by ethnic minorities. Low IQ correlates highly with rates of criminality and antisocial behavior.

What consequences will the mass importation of low-IQ peoples to the West have? Is a certain minimum average IQ necessary to maintain a complex society? Roth speculates whether what may emerge from these demographic patterns is that the USA will move in the direction of countries like Mexico, corrupt and dysfunctional states with oligarchic politics.

Do some Western elites actively desire such a result? Do they hope to turn the Western world into a giant version of Mexico with a weak middle class incapable of challenging a tiny ruling elite (themselves) entrenched virtually as a caste? Perhaps the authoritarian key to crushing the white man’s traditional desire for self-determination is to paralyze it by flooding his lands with alien ethnic groups who themselves often come from repressive and authoritarian cultures. In parts of Europe, Christianity was in medieval times used to consolidate the embryos of nation-states. Perhaps those who seek to break down these nation-states today view a different and more repressive religion, Islam, as a useful tool for achieving this goal.

The phrase “Political Correctness” first came into use under Communism and meant that all ideas had to conform to and support the agenda of the Marxist movement. History and philosophy were the first to be forced into line, but as is clear from the career of Trofim Lysenko, science was made to conform, too. Those who dissented from the official doctrine were judged to be psychologically imbalanced or evil. Today the ruling ideology is an absolute egalitarianism that if you analyze it closely actually amounts to saying that all cultures have an equal right to exist, except the European one which is evil. As Roth says:

Whether Western elites really believe these things is less important than the benefit they gain from its promulgation. The primary benefit is that it paralyzes the popular preferences for national preservation by characterizing opposition to elite doctrines as immoral, indecent, and inhumane. It allows unelected elites to aggrandize their own power by obliterating national sovereignty and nullifying democratic accountability. Many are, without exaggeration, true totalitarians that have no regard for the well-being of those they control, since the only way they can consolidate their dystopian plans is through brute state power. While there is no doubt that many well-meaning individuals join their efforts, they are the sort of ‘useful idiots’ who excused and covered up Communist atrocities during most of the 20th century.


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Fjordman: Preparing for Ragnarök

Posted by paulipoldie on May 4, 2011

From the Baron at Gates of Vienna:

Preparing for Ragnarök

The Fjordman Report
The noted blogger Fjordman is filing this report via Gates of Vienna.
For a complete Fjordman blogography, see The Fjordman Files. There is also a multi-index listing here.

Predicting the future is a difficult exercise.

The City of God was written by Augustine of Hippo soon after the city of Rome was sacked by the Visigoths in AD 410. This shocked him and his contemporaries, yet he apparently did not understand that he was watching the death of an entire civilization. Augustine himself died while the Vandals were about to sack his city.

The Scottish economist Adam Smith published his The Wealth of Nations in 1776 during the early stages of the Industrial Revolution in Britain, yet he did not see this world-historical transformation coming. Augustine and Smith were both very smart men, but even they could not foresee the near future or understand the full force of changes that was underway in their own lifetimes. Individuals who were much cleverer than I have been spectacularly wrong about the future. There is a very substantial risk that I will make the same mistake now, but I’ll try.

Augustine of Hippo: The City of God
I have increasingly come to suspect that Western civilization is not merely under threat, but that it is in fact already dead. It probably died many years ago; we just didn’t notice at the time. The West is currently in such an advanced state of decline that a collapse of sorts can no longer be avoided. The established momentum is too great, and the ruling oligarchs are not even trying to hit the brakes. A collapse will happen. It is only a question of how we deal with this, and whether we manage to carve out a good-sized homeland for our people afterwards.

I believe that the European Union will disintegrate within the coming generation, that the USA in its present form will not survive his century and that we will be facing a full structural, political, ideological and economic crisis within the coming generation followed by serious social and ethnic strife. While the twentieth century was the bloodiest century in human history so far, I fear that the twenty-first century will eventually surpass it, if for no other reason than the world is much more populous than it was in 1914 or 1939.

EU Skull Dragon
As Jacques Barzun, the French-born American teacher, author and historian of ideas, puts it in From Dawn to Decadence, “How a revolution erupts from a commonplace event — tidal wave from a ripple — is cause for endless astonishment. Neither Luther in 1517 nor the men who gathered at Versailles in 1789 intended at first what they produced at last. Even less did the Russian Liberals who made the revolution of 1917 foresee what followed. All were as ignorant as everybody else of how much was about to be destroyed. Nor could they guess what feverish feelings, what strange behavior ensue when revolution, great or short-lived, is in the air.” Mr. Barzun also reminds us that “When people accept futility and the absurd as normal, the culture is decadent. The term is not a slur; it is a technical label. A decadent culture offers opportunities chiefly to the satirist.” The West today is clearly decadent.

The Russian-born author Alexander Boot was a philology graduate of Moscow University under the Communist system during the Cold War and lectured on English and American literature before getting into trouble with the KGB, the secret police of the Soviet Union. He emigrated to the West in 1973, only to discover that the West he admired and was seeking no longer existed. This inspired a life-long quest for an explanation, some of it detailed in his book How the West Was Lost. He sees Western history as a prolonged internal struggle between two different beings which he calls Modman and Westman. Saint Paul was a Greco-Roman Christian and the first Westman. Modman saw himself as close to divine; Jesus Christ, God as man, had been replaced by Modman as God, but the old God had to die first.

'How the West Was Lost' by Alexander BootHe believes that non-European immigrants serve as a protected class used as a battering ram by the ruling elites to systematically smash and demolish the nation-states of the white West. Laws against “racism” are therefore not meant to punish criminal acts, but rather to intimidate any opposition among Europeans by always keeping whites fearful and mentally on the defensive. “They are on the books to reassert the power of the state to control not just the citizens’ actions but, more important, their thoughts.” Boot warns that “A state capable of prosecuting one person for his thoughts is equally capable of prosecuting thousands, and will predictably do so when it has consolidated its power enough to get away with any outrage.” For this reason, the author predicts that “more and more people in Western Europe and North America will be sent to prison not for something they have done, but for something they have said.”

Alexander Boot’s basic conclusion is that the West is dead, but as a Christian man he believes in resurrection and in the possibility of a life after death. Perhaps that is not a bad summary.

According to the French writer Guillaume Faye, for the first time humanity as a whole is threatened by a cataclysmic crisis that is likely to begin in the decade before 2020 — a crisis provoked by degradation of the ecosystems and geopolitical contests for scarce resources like agricultural land, oil, and above all water; by the fragility of an international economic order based on speculation and the massive indebtedness of democratic states; by the return of epidemics; by the rise of terrorism and nuclear proliferation; by the growing aggressiveness of Islam’s world offensive; and by the dramatic ageing of European populations, whose below replacement-level birth rates are confronted with rapidly growing masses of young people in the dysfunctional countries of the global South, coupled with mass migrations to the North.

This convergence of catastrophes will mark the transition from one era to another. The USA will most likely cease to be the leading world power by mid-century, perhaps cease to exist at all in its present form. The global center of power will then move back to Eurasia, where it has almost always been previously. The strongest power will probably be China or what Faye calls “Euro-Siberia” — a federated alliance between the peoples of Europe plus Russia. He doesn’t think this is literally the end of the world, merely the end of the world as we know it. Something new may arise from these events, since Europe is a civilization of metamorphosis.

Faye predicts two possibilities for European civilization over the coming century: regeneration based on a resurgence of ancestral values, or else disappearance. Europe, especially the western half of the Continent, is currently being invaded. This is coupled with an incredible masochism on the part of Europeans themselves. Only a terrifying crisis can awaken them, and war is the most merciless of selective forces; a people that abandons its will to power inevitably perishes. A “mental AIDS,” a virus of nihilism, has severely weakened their natural defenses. Consequently, Europeans have succumbed to self-extinction. The primary symptom of this is “xenophilia,” a systematic preference for the Other over the Self.

The current advanced state of decadence owes much to the secularization of Christian charity and its modern egalitarian offshoot, human rights. In the widest possible sense it was the same civilizational genius that gave the world the concepts of universal gravitation and universal human rights. After the unprecedented successes of the Scientific Revolution, post-Enlightenment Europeans fell so much in love with the power of their own ideas that they ultimately came to define their very existence as one big idea, hence the concept of an “idea nation” or “proposition nation” was born. The leaders of this were the Americans and the French, whose Revolutions in the late 1700s came to view their countries as universal republics. This ideal was not and could not be implemented at that time, but two centuries later, coupled with the rise of global communications, it won out over ethnic identification.

Faye believes that Europe now faces a danger unparalleled in its history and refuses to see it. It has been colonized by peoples from the South. This non-European invasion began in the 1960s and was largely self-engendered, by politicians contaminated with Marxist ideas, by an employer class greedy for cheap labor, and by Utopian humanitarian ideals or misplaced post-colonial guilt. Illegal immigrants/foreign colonizers are very rarely repatriated, but receive lavish social welfare benefits handed out to them by anti-white forces in control of the state:

A race war is foreseeable now in several European countries, a subterranean war that will be far more destructive than ‘terrorism.’ The White population is being displaced, a sort of genocide is being carried out against it with the complicity or the abstention of the ruling class, the media, and the politicians, for the ideology these collaborating elites uphold is infused with a pathological hatred of their own people and a morbid passion for miscegenation. The state’s utopian plan for ‘republican integration’ has nevertheless failed because it assumed peaceful coexistence between foreigners and natives, non-Whites and Whites, was possible in a single territory. Our rulers haven’t read Aristotle, who taught that no city can possibly be democratic and orderly if it isn’t ethnically homogeneous… European societies today are devolving into an unmanageable ethnic chaos.

He believes that a rebirth of European civilization in a different form is possible, but not inevitable. Whether or not this transformation takes place depends upon to what extent Europeans manage to restore healthy societies while drawing upon their historical memory, rather than having Islamic values imposed upon them. He thinks they should adopt a policy of Europe First. Others take care of their own problems, first and foremost. Whites must learn to do the same. It is their future existence that is under threat, not that of Africans or Pakistanis:

The twenty-first century will be a century of iron and storms. It will not resemble those harmonious futures predicted up to the 1970s. It will not be the global village prophesied by Marshall MacLuhan in 1966, or Bill Gates’ planetary network, or Francis Fukuyama’s end of history: a liberal global civilization directed by a universal state. It will be a century of competing peoples and ethnic identities. And paradoxically, the victorious peoples will be those that remain faithful to, or return to, ancestral values and realities — which are biological, cultural, ethical, social, and spiritual — and that at the same time will master technoscience. The twenty-first century will be the one in which European civilization, Promethean and tragic but eminently fragile, will undergo a metamorphosis or enter its irremediable twilight.

American political scientist Samuel P. Huntington’s Clash of Civilizations thesis from the 1990s has been accused of simplification, but he should be credited with placing the significance of ethno-cultural blocs on the radar of global politics. He is also right in pointing out that this era is characterized by a West with declining influence. The tectonic plates of global power are shifting. Future historians may label this age “the retreat of the Western world order.” The West is no longer strong enough to carry the rest of the world on its shoulders. We will face generations of turmoil until a new equilibrium is found. These massive changes and the perceived weakness of a civilization that has been dominant globally for centuries could very well ignite a new world war. Multiculturalism and the inability or unwillingness of Western nations to uphold their borders from foreign infiltration is viewed by others as an invitation for attack and a signal that the West is weak and ripe for conquest.

This century may well be dominated by a resurgence of ethno-cultural blocs. Europeans need to break with the “presentism” in which they are currently sunk and learn to see themselves again (as do many others) as a “long-living people,” bearers of a great past and hopefully a great future, too. The mental revolution needed to bring about this change in European attitudes is only possible through a gigantic crisis, a violent shock, which is already on its way. The present system is founded on a belief in miracles and a myth of indefinite progress. It is bound to collapse, but we should remember that history is open-ended and presents many unexpected twists and turns. Opportunities will arise. We need to be able to grasp them.

I’ve been trying to think centuries ahead about what is needed for European survival. The bottom line is: We need our own territories again, our own countries. History has shown us, for instance in Latin America or in parts of Central Asia, that once the European genetic percentage drops below a certain threshold, the resulting population neither looks nor acts like Europeans. Experience also tells us that if two or more different populations inhabit the same land, they will eventually mix. In combination, this means that the only way European civilization can flourish in the long run is if we have large territories specifically dedicated for people who are overwhelmingly of demographic European stock. In those cases where this has been lost it needs to be reestablished. Ideas matter, but culture primarily follows genes.

Tzotzil children
All nations around the world try to maintain their ethnicity. Only in white majority Western countries do the authorities wage a deliberate demographic and cultural war against the majority population. This is evil, and Europeans have every right to defend themselves against evil policies. Whites have shown the ability to create societies and social systems that transcend the narrow confines of clan, tribe and ethnic nepotism. This is in many ways a great character trait, but it can also be our Achilles’ heel if it is weaponized and turned against us. We must recognize that we are unusual, and that our values are far from universally shared.

White Westerners have given other peoples, including actively hostile tribes, the tools needed to multiply beyond their native capacity, the transportation needed to travel to our countries, the human rights legislation needed to settle here and the welfare states needed to exploit us.

This situation is intensified by the fact that globalization of communications and transportation, ironically to a large extent created by Western inventions, puts severe pressure on our nations in ways which were unthinkable a few generations ago. When the Christian Gospels were written down at the end of the first century AD, the population of the Roman Empire was perhaps 60 million people. This is less than the annual population growth in the early twenty-first century. In other words: The global population grows by more than another Roman Empire every single year. Our system wasn’t designed to cope with such numbers.

The various cultures and religions of the world have experienced time in different ways. We are most accustomed to a linear system deriving from the Judeo-Christian tradition, which sees a clear progression from the creation of the world through a long series of events to a last time, a Day of Judgment and an end to all history. Modern science also tends to start with a universe created at a specific point in time, the “Big Bang,” although its end is yet uncertain.

As Parkes states in Gods and Men — The Origins of Western Culture, “The most significant feature of the Jewish heritage, however, was its view of history. Other ancient peoples had believed in a golden age, but had always located it in the past at the beginning of time. Israel alone looked forward to a golden age in the future and interpreted history as a meaningful and progressive movement toward this Messianic consummation. Originating in tribalistic loyalty, and reflecting the determination of a weak people to retain its identity in spite of conquest and enslavement, the Messianic hope was given universal scope by the prophets and became the end toward which all earthly events were moving. In various manifestations, religious and secular, spiritual and materialistic, it became one of those dynamic social myths which give meaning and direction to human life and which have more influence on human action than any rational philosophy. Unless its importance is understood, the development not merely of the Jewish people but also of the whole Western world becomes unintelligible.”

Ragnarök (“Doom of the Gods” or “Judgment of the Powers”), the end of the world as we know it, will mean the death of the main god Odin and his son Thor. This is described in the Icelandic Völuspá (“Prophecy of the Seeress [Völva]”), the first poem of the Poetic Edda and one of our most important sources to Norse mythology, although it was written down in the Christian era. Odin will meet his end against the giant wolf Fenrir. Thor will fight against Jörmungandr (Mighty-snake), a giant sea creature known as the Midgard Serpent that bites itself on its own tail and surrounds the human world, called Midgard or the Middle Earth. Thor will fight heroically and vanquish the beast, but after walking nine steps he will fall dead from its venom. Yet after all this destruction and moral chaos has ended, a new world will arise from the sea. Some of the gods will survive, as will two humans who will then repeople the Earth.

While Ragnarök is the end of the world as we know it, it is not “the end of history” in the Judeo-Christian sense. A new world will arise from its ashes. Our goal should be to sow seeds that can grow into strong trees bearing fine fruits in the future. Whether this post-catastrophic culture — which will most likely have a different mythology and maybe a different concept of morality to go with it compared to what we have now — will be a revived version of Western civilization or an entirely new version of European civilization I do not know, but I tend to suspect the latter. It is hard to predict such things, but a crucial challenge will no doubt be to break with the mentality of “progress” towards “equality,” since a toxic combination of these two concepts is burying us under dangerous and biologically unsustainable egalitarian ideals.

The coming crash will at the very least lead to an ideological-political paradigm shift and the rise of a new mythology to replace the post-WWII “suicide paradigm” of misunderstood anti-Nazism and deranged altruism. At worst, the discontinuity will be so long and severe that what emerges on the other side will be a completely new civilization, another generation of European civilization, just like what emerged during the Middle Ages was a different civilization from that of Greco-Roman Antiquity. The transition between the first and second generations of European civilization took centuries. History generally moves faster now than it did back then, but I suspect such a transition will nevertheless take several generations.

How a new civilization would look like I do not know. Medieval Europeans used different elements of the Greco-Roman legacy creatively and added innovations on top of this. Generation Two of European civilization contained within itself aspects of Generation One, but also had elements of sharp discontinuity. This will probably be the case next time, too.

As Geoffrey Parker reminds us in The Cambridge History of Warfare, the overall aim of Western strategy “almost always remained the total defeat and destruction of the enemy, and this contrasted starkly with the military practice of many other societies.” He highlights the combination of technological innovation and discipline as key traits of the Western military tradition. It is not true that Europeans are particularly ethnocentric; if anything, it is the total lack of ethnocentrism that constitutes our greatest problem today. However, it is true that in addition to being great explorers, artists and scientists we have also been great warriors when circumstances have called for this. This particular cultural trait is, admittedly, very well hidden in our age of decadence, betrayal and suicidal tolerance, but it can be brought back.

Charles Martel
We will most likely enter a prolonged period of great turbulence and upheaval; the bubble of welfare state “cradle-to grave security” is about to burst. This process will be painful, but necessary, and is in any case more or less inevitable by now. In 1911 Western Europeans still ruled much of the world. In 2011 we don’t even rule the suburbs in our own major cities, and some learned observers seriously predict the end of European civilization altogether.

This also implies that for the first time in centuries we are the underdogs. There are many historical examples, from the Persian invasions of ancient times to the Muslim invasions later, where Europeans have performed at our best when we have been the underdogs. Perhaps we can do the same once the Multicultural madness retreats. We need to make sure, though, that those who have championed the toxic ideas of Multiculturalism and mass immigration of alien tribes disappear with it. If that happens, we can give our descendants a fresh start and lay the foundations for a new Renaissance, where European civilization can flourish once more.

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On the Background for Easter Eggs

Posted by paulipoldie on April 23, 2011

The noted blogger Fjordman is filing this report via Gates of Vienna.
For a complete Fjordman blogography, see
The Fjordman Files. There is also a multi-index listing here.

Christmas is a festival celebrating the birth of Jesus, but many of our current practices, such as giving Christmas presents, are of a relatively recent date. Although a specifically Christian celebration, like many other European ideas it has been adopted in other parts of the world as a kind of secular holiday, somewhat to the dismay of devout Christians. Even non-Christian countries like Japan have adopted certain of its traditions, for instance Santa Claus, gift-giving, decorations and Christmas trees. The same is true of China, Thailand and other places where Christians are a minority. It also contains traces of pre-Christian practices in Europe.

Christmas tree, 18th century Germany
Pagan Scandinavians in late December, around the time of the winter solstice, celebrated a festival called Yule. Present-day Scandinavians still call the Christmas season jul. The Christmas tree, an evergreen tree decorated with lights (originally candles) and ornaments, may also partly have older, pre-Christian roots. While its history is not entirely clear, the custom may possibly be traced back to the Baltic region, one of the last areas in Europe to be Christianized, to late medieval Estonia and Latvia and then to northern Germany from the sixteenth century on. The first use of candles on such trees is recorded in the early 1600s. The custom of creating Christmas trees remained confined to the upper Rhineland for generations, before it spread beyond the Protestant regions of Germany to the rest of Europe and the world.

In the Celtic religion, trees were seen as sacred objects, and the oak tree enjoyed a particular prominence. The name “druid,” referring to members of the learned class of priests among the Celts, originally meant “oak-knower.” The oak was the sacred tree of Zeus in ancient Greece. It was also often associated with the world tree in Slavic mythology while Yggdrasil, the huge world tree supporting the universe in Norse mythology, is usually identified as an ash tree. In the Völuspá, Ask was the first human man and Embla the first human woman, created by the gods from tree trunks. The meaning of Embla is uncertain, but Ask clearly means “ash tree.”

Professor Mary W. Helms reflects on the cultural significance of certain materials. The seagoing Dover Bronze Age Boat from England in the sixteenth century BC, for instance, was primarily constructed from oak and yew. Obviously, there are practical issues to consider such as the material properties of durability, elastic strength and resistance to rot (oak wood has great strength), but it is worth recalling that both the oak and the yew were widely recognized as cosmologically special species of trees, even sacred trees, in ancient European lore.

Taxus baccata (the common yew)The common yew — Taxus baccata — grows across much of the European continent. Ironically, it was simultaneously related to death (its leaves and seeds are toxic to humans and to livestock, though not to game) and to immortality since it is a very long-lived evergreen. Incredibly, the Llangernyw Yew, which grows in a churchyard in Llangernyw village in northern Wales, is thought to be more than four thousand years old, making it one of the world’s oldest living organisms. As for the oak, in the modern world it is often associated with the construction of fine furniture or the production of alcoholic beverages, for instance oak barrels for maturing wine, whiskey or cognac. In Celtic and Germanic cultures, that mighty tree was recognized as a cosmic axis mundi linking people with the sky and the gods:

Such an august association was probably very ancient. For example, Bronze Age northern Europe often utilised the oak as a coffin. Harding comments on the symbolic significance of such an interment, relating the oak tree-trunk coffin to house construction (also predominantly of oak in temperate Europe) and noting the relationship between houses and tombs both in Neolithic and Bronze Age contexts. He mentions, too, the ancient and long-lasting association of yews with graveyards (and churchyards) and the general connection of trees like ash, oak, and yew with longevity or eternal life; burial within a tree carrying the obvious connotation of a return to the source of life.

Pashka iconLike Christmas, Easter consists of a mix of Christian and older, pagan symbols such as spring fertility rites. Many European languages use variations over the name of the Jewish festival Passover, called Pesach in Hebrew. In Italian, it’s Pasqua; in French, Pâques; in Spanish, Pascua; in Scandinavian languages Påsk or Påske; in Dutch, Pasen; and in Russian, Paskha, borrowed from the Greek via Old Church Slavonic. However, in German it’s called Ostern. The English Easter probably stems from Eostre, a Germanic goddess of spring and fertility.

Easter is the story of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. He was crucified in Jerusalem on Good Friday and was, according to believers, resurrected from the dead on the third day, having died for the sins and salvation of all mankind. This belief constitutes the very essence of the Christian religion. The date for Easter was settled during the First Council of Nicaea, presided over in person by the Roman Emperor Constantine I in AD 325. It also adopted the Nicene Creed, which is accepted as authoritative by all major branches of Christianity and affirms the divinity of Jesus and the Trinity of God the creator as Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

Easter is a moveable feast taking place after the Full Moon following the spring equinox, or at some point between March 22 and April 25 in the Gregorian calendar. Eastern Christianity of the Orthodox Churches continues to base its calculations on the older Julian calendar, which means that the dates of their Christian holidays currently differ from the Western ones.

In the Western Church, Easter was preceded by Lent, a forty-day period of fasting (excluding Sundays). In early Christian thought, gluttony (overeating) had been defined as one of the Seven Deadly Sins along with wrath, greed, sloth, pride, lust and envy. This was an era of scarcity. Lent is a partial fast where you abstain from certain types of food such as cheese, meat and eggs. This is very different from the fasting done by Muslims during Ramadan, who abstain completely from food and drink during the day for an entire month, including water in very hot countries, and then eat lots of cakes and watch TV during the night. Some types of fasting can have beneficial health effects, but this latter variety is not healthy for the body.

The island of LofotenThe Roman Catholic Church imposed fasting during Lent. There were certain “lean days” when it was forbidden to eat “fat” food. Meat-eating was forbidden on almost 180 days — nearly half the year — but fish came to be regarded as suitable food for fast days. This meant that trade in fish could be quite profitable. Lofoten, the scenic Norwegian island group just north of the Arctic Circle, enjoys a climate that is technically classified as “temperate” due to the warm waters of the Gulf Stream that heat northwestern Europe. Since the Viking Age, if not before, stockfish — cod hung on wooden racks to be air-dried by the Sun and the salt breeze from the sea — has been made here. It has a long storage life. By medieval times it was exported via the port city of Bergen and the trading network of the Hanseatic League to Continental Western Europe. Salted cod (bacalao) is still popular in Portugal, Spain and Italy.

Crucifixion by Theophanes of CreteLent ends with the Last Supper on Holy Thursday, when Christ is said to have given the ceremony of communion to his followers, the Twelve Disciples: “Take of this bread and eat of it, for it is my body. Take of this wine and drink of it, for it is my blood.” One of them, Judas Iscariot, betrayed Jesus and sold him out to Roman authorities for thirty pieces of silver:

The next day, Good Friday, is the deepest day of mourning in the Christian religion because it is the day Christ was crucified (on a cross made of olive wood), died, and was buried. On Easter Sunday, Christians believe that Christ rose again and ascended into heaven. Eggs were forbidden during Lent, but were used heavily in ritual foods when fast was broken on Easter Sunday. They were in special egg breads like Ukrainian paska or Russian saffron-scented kulich. Sometimes the bread is decorated with dyed hard-boiled eggs or shaped into a cross. For Easter dinner, traditional foods depend on geography. In the Mediterranean, it is lamb; in Northern Europe, ham; in England, beef. The custom of giving painted eggs for Easter dates to the later Middle Ages. Baskets to hold the eggs represent birds’ nest. The Easter Bunny with his basket of painted eggs came to America with German immigrants in the nineteenth century.

Family of Easter bunniesThe Easter lamb here refers to Jesus himself, as Christ was seen as “the Lamb of God.” To Christians they constitute a symbol of the Resurrection, but eggs are a self-evident symbol of creation and rebirth. The use of painted and decorated Easter eggs was first recorded in the Late Middle Ages.

The only possible ancient parallel is found among the Jews, the soup with hardboiled eggs of Passover, served after the Seder ceremony. There are no references earlier than the fifteenth century which mention the distribution of eggs at Easter, but from the sixteenth century on there are plenty. A tradition that eggs are brought by a hare or bunny is found in German lands, but it goes no farther back than the seventeenth century. It was the subject of a medical dissertation at Heidelberg in 1682, where it was announced as a novelty:

In some parts of Germany, instead of a hare, a bird or a fox brings eggs, or eggs may fall from the sky, together with church bells returning from a trip to Rome to be blessed. This started as a popular rather than a genuine folk custom of the South of France in the mid-nineteenth century, and was encouraged if not actually suggested by the clergy in an effort to make Easter celebrations more religious. Confectioners have spread the idea to all other countries, eggs and bells being an excellent way to market chocolate. Decorated eggs are not by any means all meant to be kept; most are eaten. However, in Romania and the Ukraine the shells are saved to be thrown in the river (an ancient gesture with various different kinds of significance). The shells go down into the other world to tell the dead to be of good cheer: Christ is risen, and all at home are rejoicing.

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Fjordman: A Few Reasons for Cautious Optimism

Posted by paulipoldie on September 23, 2010

A Few Reasons for Cautious Optimism

The noted blogger Fjordman is filing this report via Gates of Vienna.
For a complete Fjordman blogography, see The Fjordman Files. There is also a multi-index listing here.

In his article Dreaming of a Culture War, Paul E. Gottfried at the website Alternative Right criticizes my essay Thilo Sarrazin vs. the Ruling Multicultural Oligarchs, which he claims is “full of dubious assumptions.” He states that “‘democracies,’ and particularly the ones that look after their ‘citizens’ with tax monies and custodial oversight of behavior, generate widespread loyalty because of their uninhibited paternalism and because the people are made to believe they consent to having their brains laundered. This is a political success story unparalleled in human history.” Furthermore, “While [Fjordman]’s into happy talk, I’m trying to understand why the current oligarchs have done so well for so long. And I find absolutely no evidence that their string of successes will not continue into the indefinite future.”

I agree that far too many Westerners stubbornly keep voting for bad political parties. I was personally disappointed during the previous parliamentary elections in Britain, when rather few citizens voted for real alternatives such as the BNP or the UKIP and instead supported the three established left-wing parties. And yes, I consider the Tories to constitute a centrist or center-left party today. It is unfortunately true that many of the establishment so-called “conservatives,” from Merkel via Sarkozy to George W. Bush, are little better than the left-wing parties. This exposes serious flaws in the democratic system. Apart from that, I disagree with most of the assumptions Mr. Gottfried makes and I believe his conclusions are incorrect.

Ordinary Westerners are indeed guilty of not putting up enough resistance to the ongoing Multicultural destruction of the West, but they are not the driving force behind it. The common people are divided, but with a large and rapidly increasing percentage of them rejecting the anti-Western Multicultural propaganda of the ruling elites. The ruling elites — or perhaps we should call them oligarchs since “elites” is how they view themselves — are still almost uniformly behind the deliberate program of flooding the West with mass immigration to demographically and culturally transform Western countries. Dissenters from this policy are branded as heretics and formally expelled from their ranks, as is happening to Sarrazin.

This is uncontroversial as far as I am concerned. The interesting question is why the ruling elites are doing this, and what they hope to gain from their destructive policies. My bet is that many of the Leftists are informed by a Marxist understanding in which the West is the evil inventor of capitalism that needs to be destroyed for its sins to pave the way for a just world order. The Big Business supporters simply want unrestricted access to markets, raw materials and workers and feel less and less loyalty to any specific nation. In general, all the elites, not just the Leftists but the centrists and large segments of the “establishment Right,” believe that dismantling Western nation-states is necessary because functioning nation-states constitute an obstacle to a Globalist world order. Also, it is quite possible that some of the oligarchs suffer from “Third World envy” and want to turn the West into a giant Mexico, where the wealthy elites lord over a vast sea of serfs and with no significant middle class to challenge their rule.

While the Multicultural oligarchs remain in control, they are less firmly so now than they were a few years ago. Although it would be an exaggeration to say that they are scared, some of them might be getting a little nervous. Despite having near-total control over the propaganda flow in the form of the mass media, they find it increasingly hard to convince the common people that being mugged in previously safe cities is “enriching,” that importing dysfunctional Third World tribes is “good for the economy” or that Islam is a “religion of peace.” A critical mass of ordinary individuals in the West currently know that they are being lied to on a daily basis and that they have been deceived by their own leaders for decades.

Even the nuclear weapon in the Multicultural arsenal, the “racism” card, is not as intimidating as it used to be, especially since rapid advances in genetics are making it clear that there likely is a genetic component to intelligence. White Westerners are sick and tired of being abused and dispossessed second-rate citizens in their own countries, of being the subject of constant ridicule and unfair demonization and above all of being the only peoples on the planet who do not have the right to preserve their culture and heritage, despite the fact that they have created the most dynamic and innovate civilization that has ever existed in the history of mankind.

A rising tide of white anger is one of the most significant political developments in the Western world today. This change is real, not imaginary. In September this year the Sweden Democrats, operating under appallingly repressive conditions in what is probably the most totalitarian country in the Western world, were swept into the Swedish parliament. I have noticed when talking to random people that many of the subjects that I write about which were considered highly controversial only five years ago are finding more acceptance.

This movement is gradual, but for the first time in generations it is going in the right direction. I choose to see the cup as half full in this case rather than remain a grumpy professional pessimist. Also, as Islam is becoming increasingly unpopular among the masses, so too will its apologists in the West become. If all of your enemies are in the same boat this potentially makes it possible to hit all of them with the same torpedo, figuratively speaking.

Does this mean that I think we have won? Of course it doesn’t. We have tremendous challenges ahead of us. I’m merely saying that something resembling a genuine opposition is finally emerging. It is not sufficiently organized and it needs guidance, but let us then focus on how to provide that guidance. The opposition movement has potential, especially if the economy keeps deteriorating in the near future, which is a very real possibility. If Mr. Gottfried has failed to notice the rising popular resentment against the lying Multicultural oligarchs then I fear that he no longer understands what is going on in his own civilization.

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Fjordman: Thilo Sarrazin vs. the Ruling Multicultural Oligarchs

Posted by paulipoldie on September 10, 2010

From Gates of Vienna

by Baron Bodissey

The noted blogger Fjordman is filing this report via Gates of Vienna.
For a complete Fjordman blogography, see The Fjordman Files. There is also a multi-index listing here.

It is true, as some observers point out, that many people make stupid choices and more or less freely vote for parties that insult them and take away their freedom and dignity. This is a very real problem and exposes some of the flaws of mass democracy. I don’t question that. The issue is whether there is also something else at work in the modern West in addition to this, and my answer to that is “yes”. As Bat Ye’or has demonstrated in her pioneer work Eurabia and I have confirmed in my own book Defeating Eurabia, the leaders of the European Union have been promoting Third World mass immigration, including Muslim immigration, as a long-term policy for decades. Similar policies are no doubt at work in North America.

The harassment of the popular immigration critic Thilo Sarrazin in Germany and the hostile international reactions to the referendum against Islamic minarets in Switzerland clearly demonstrate that we are also dealing with a self-appointed transnational elite in power throughout the Western world who are consciously and deliberately trying to dismantle Western nation states using international law combined with massive propaganda campaigns, “anti-racist” brainwashing of people of European origins and above all mass immigration.

US writer Lee Harris is the author of the recent book The Next American Civil War — The Populist Revolt against the Liberal Elite and the previous title The Suicide of Reason, which I have discussed before. In his essay The Tea Party vs. the Intellectuals, Harris describes how the USA’s intellectual elite has become radically out of touch with the sensibility of a large chunk of their nation’s population. He notes the “mounting dissatisfaction at living in a society in which a small group has increasingly solidified its monopoly over the manufacture and distribution of opinion, deciding which ideas and policies should be looked upon favorably and which political candidates will be sympathetically reported.”

According to Lee Harris, “The goal of such censorship is to create a population that has been so well trained and disciplined by the political elite that it will be incapable of even thinking forbidden thoughts.” Due to the existence of modern mass media of unprecedented power, especially the visual mass media such as television, “If the censors have the power to eliminate thoughts they find objectionable, what will prevent them from abusing their formidable capacity by imposing their own narrow agenda on the rest of society, and for their own selfish purposes? Indeed, what is to keep them from establishing a totalitarian regime that does not need to rely on terror or brute force simply because it has developed far more effective methods of obtaining the consent of the masses — namely, cultural indoctrination?”

A thematically related article about the “ruling class” of the USA, written by Professor Angelo M. Codevilla, appeared in the American Spectator in July 2010. He believes we are witnessing a clash between what he dubs “the country class” and a liberal, urban ruling class. Tensions arise because the majority “discovered that virtually no one in a position of power in either party or with a national voice would take their objections seriously, that decisions about their money were being made in bipartisan backroom deals with interested parties, and that the laws on these matters were being voted by people who had not read them.”
– – – – – – – – –
As Codevilla notes, the ruling class has grown and set itself apart from the rest by its connection with ever bigger government. They claim to be upholders of “science” and “reason” and that those who disagree with them and their views are ignorant and superstitious bigots. This arguably constitutes their weakest spot. If their critics can prove that these self-appointed elites have lied about major issues such as global warming, Islam or genetic differences between various ethnic groups they can strike a serious blow to their regime.

Author Christopher Lasch warned against such trends in his 1996 book The Revolt of the Elites and the Betrayal of Democracy. While these examples are from the USA, very similar forces are at work simultaneously from Austria to Australia and from Sweden to Britain. In the case of Sarrazin the Multicultural oligarchs made many mistakes, above all by being too open with their censorship. This approach breeds resentment and anger and could potentially make the peasants look for their pitchforks. The elites are increasingly nervous and therefore increasingly sloppy, which is good. They have showed their hand and demonstrated openly that we live in an oligarchy, not a democracy. There is a theory that all alleged democracies are actually hidden oligarchies, since a few rich and powerful individuals, groups and families will control much of the propaganda flow and pull the strings behind the scenes.

The problem with the Western oligarchs is that they are actively hostile to the long-term interest of the white majority population. China is an oligarchy, too, but despite their numerous flaws the Chinese oligarchs today are arguably better at promoting the long-term interests of their people. At the very least they are not deliberately mass importing hostile tribes who immediately proceed to rape their daughters and stab their sons. Western elites do this on a daily basis. It would be interesting to analyze the motivations behind the evil actions of the Globalist Multicultural oligarchs of the West, but this has to await a later essay.

Multiculturalism is in some ways almost more totalitarian than Communism. We just didn’t realize this at first. In Norway, Khalid Salimi, a Pakistani “anti-racist,” complained about the fact that too many white natives peacefully enjoyed music at a festival together in their own country. This wasn’t “diverse” enough. Soon whites will literally be banned from congregating in separate groups. I no longer consider this a joke. The “conservative” President Sarkozy has said publicly that native Frenchmen have to mix with immigrants. It is thus mandatory in France to import Africans and breed with them. Not even Stalin did this. In the modern West, the state wants to regulate who we have sex with and from which ethnic group.

Communist societies were based on fear. So are Multicultural ones. The control mechanisms are normally more subtle, to be sure, but they exist. What happened was not that totalitarianism died with the Cold War, but that non-lethal means of manipulating and controlling the masses were perfected within the West. We don’t have a Gulag, but (white) people constantly live in fear that saying something “racist” could end their careers. Yet this “fear of being called a racist” is currently weakening. This means that the Multicultural oligarchs have to quickly manufacture new lies and come up with alternative strategies for keeping the masses in their place, or they will be forced to apply increasingly heavy-handed censorship, which will breed resentment, expose their rule and demonstrate that they have no real arguments in their favor. For critics of Multiculturalism, this can only be a good thing.

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Fjordman: On the Illusion of a Moderate Islam

Posted by paulipoldie on August 11, 2010

by way of Jihadwatch

This essay overlaps to some extent with earlier essays of mine regarding the alleged existence of a “moderate Islam,” including Do we want an Islamic Reformation? and Why We Cannot Rely on Moderate Muslims. In this discussion I take as my starting point the fact that the traditional Islamic religious texts — the Koran supplemented by secondary sources such as the hadith literature — through a straightforward reading encourage perpetual violence against non-Muslims around the world until the global supremacy of Islam and its followers has been firmly established. There are plenty of studies available confirming this. Muslim scholars themselves, including prominent ones such as al-Ghazali and Ibn Khaldun, have supported this view for well over one thousand years and continue to do so in the twenty-first century.

One complicating factor is that lying to or deceiving non-Muslims using techniques known as taqiyya and kitman are perfectly permissible in Islam and widely practiced by Shias and Sunnis alike. The claim that this strategy exists within Shia Islam alone is false; for example, the Palestinian Sunni Jihadist leader Yasser Arafat (1929-2004) at the same time as he was talking about “peace” to Westerners — a game of deception which earned him a share in the Nobel Peace Prize in 1994 — to Arabic-speaking audiences suggested that the Oslo peace negotiations with Israelis were merely temporary measures similar to the Treaty of Hudaybiyya between Muhammad’s followers and the non-Muslim Qurayshi tribe of Mecca, which was promptly broken as soon as the Muslims felt strong enough to get away with it.

Many Muslims, for instance Tariq Ramadan, are known to put up a “moderate” face in front of an infidel audience but present a very different message when addressing Muslims in their own language. Generally speaking it is permissible for Muslims to lie, or withhold the truth, if they cannot yet force their will on their opponents by brute force, as long as they keep the “true Islam” alive within their hearts. This does of course not mean that all Muslims do this always, but it is a common strategy employed particularly where Muslims are a minority.

In plain words this means that if Western countries ever become serious about closing their borders to Muslim immigration and expelling sharia-sponsoring persons from their lands, we should expect to see an immediate, massive increase in the number of “kind” and “tolerant” Muslims in the West, but many of them would be lying and biding their time for better days.

The trouble with self-proclaimed “moderate Muslims” is that many of them, most likely the majority, use deception to confuse the infidels while infiltrating their societies. This implies that non-Muslims cannot know for sure whether Muslims are being honest with them or not and can never fully trust them. It does not mean that “moderate Muslims” don’t exist in the form of individuals who genuinely desire to live in peace with their neighbors — people aren’t born Jihadists just because they have a Muslim name — but it is extremely hard for infidels to distinguish between those who are genuine and those who are merely trying to deceive us.

A soft-spoken Muslim can potentially without warning turn militant and go on a killing spree, a phenomenon dubbed “Sudden Jihad Syndrome.” Besides, well-meaning peaceful individuals with Muslim names can easily be sidelined, intimidated and silenced by their more violent and ruthless co-religionists. Finally, from a straightforward reading of Islamic scriptures and history, militant Jihadists frequently have a better scriptural and theological backing for their views than the so-called moderates. In short, the question isn’t whether there are moderate Muslims but whether there is a moderate Islam. The likely answer to this is no.

There is talk about the prospects of an “Islamic Reformation.” This primarily happens in the West, not in India, China or among Eastern Orthodox Christians because it reminds Westerners of the Protestant Reformation in sixteenth century Europe that split the Roman Catholic Church from Protestant reformers who refused to acknowledge the leadership of the Pope and criticized some of the doctrines and practices of the Catholic Church. The Protestant Reformation triggered generations of regional turbulence in Europe; a hypothetical Islamic Reformation would likely cause generations of international turbulence, which is not an altogether pleasant scenario in a nuclear-armed world connected by intercontinental travel.

Any comparison between Christianity and Islam only takes you so far. There is no centralized hierarchical structure in Islam to rebel against similar to the Vatican in the Roman Catholic Church, but that is not the most important difference. The question of whether or not Islam can be reformed hinges upon your definition of the term “reformation.” Many Westerners implicitly envision something along the lines of “peaceful, non-sharia based with respect for individual choice and freedom of speech.” In other words: “Reform” is vaguely taken to mean “less sharia and violent Jihad,” although this is often implied and not explicitly spelled out.

Reformers such as Martin Luther and John Calvin called for a return to a Golden Age of pure, early Christianity. Although the Protestant Reformation was a turbulent period, it did pave the way for more religious freedom in Christian Europe in the long run. This was partly because Christians could return to the example, as contained in their Gospels, of an early age where the founder of their religion and his disciples led a largely peaceful movement separate from the state. Muslims, on the other hand, can find a similar example only in the Mecca period since in Medina, if you rely on traditional history, Muhammad became a ruler who wielded political as well as religious power and waged wars against those who disagreed with him.

As long as the writings from the violent Medina period remain in force, any return to the “Golden Age” of early Islam will imply a return to intolerance, militant Islamic supremacism and Jihad violence. Some observers look for a “Muslim Martin Luther” who is expected to end the resurgent Jihad. But one could argue that we already have such a person: He’s called Osama bin Laden. If “reform” is taken to mean a return to the historical period of the religious founder and his followers then it will inevitably lead to an upsurge in Jihadist violence, since that was what Muhammad and his companions actually did according to Islamic scriptures.

Can there be such a thing as a reformed, moderate Islam in the sense of a creed whose followers and believers will: coexist peacefully and on equal terms with non-Muslims, without forcing their beliefs or rule on anybody; refrain from reacting violently to perceived criticisms or insults of their Prophet or Holy Book; accept that individual Muslims should be free to openly leave their Faith if they so desire; accept that religion is primarily a private matter that should not regulate all of society according to unequal and totalitarian sharia law?

My bet is that such a version of Islam is unlikely to materialize and even less likely to succeed. I will now take a look at a few hypothetical ways in which this religion might be reformed and show why they probably won’t achieve much success in the long run. Some of them already have been tried, but with only moderate success or among very marginal groups.

One possible solution could be to restrain or cage Islam within a framework of rigidly enforced secularism. This kind of muscular secularism has been attempted under Mustafa Kemal Atatürk (“Father of Turks,” 1881-1938), military officer and autocratic founder of the Republic of Turkey, serving as its first president after the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire following the First World War. An admirer of the European Enlightenment, he sought to modernize his country by turning it into a secular nation-state and reducing the influence of Islam in Turkish political life as much as practically possible through a far-reaching program of political, economic and cultural reforms whose principles are commonly referred to as Kemalism. In 1924 he abolished the institution of the Caliphate. Although it had existed in name only for over a thousand years and was devoid of real power, it nevertheless served as a formal link with the first Caliphs after Muhammad’s death and a symbol of (largely imaginary) Islamic unity. For this reason, millions of Muslims would like to recreate the Caliphate and restore it as a symbol of and vehicle for achieving Islamic global supremacy.

These reforms were partly successful, but they came at a price. Since Muslims are accustomed to venerating a particular person, Atatürk created something of a cult surrounding his person that could have been considered “Fascist” in other times and places. Visitors to Turkey have described what might be called the competing personality cults of two individuals: Atatürk and Muhammad. In the end, it appears as if Muhammad won this contest.

Secular or not, Turkey has never been a beacon of tolerance. The rather few non-Muslims who have remained in the country face harassment, sometimes of a brutal nature. Serious riots broke out in Istanbul on September 6, 1955 which led to looting in Christian neighborhoods and the destruction of many of the city’s churches and Jewish synagogues. More than 5,000 shops belonging to the Greek minority were looted by an emotional crowd of thousands of Turkish Muslim militants who carried out several “circumcisions” on the spot with knives.

The one thousand year long Turkish Jihad against Greek-speaking Christians continued when the allegedly secular Turkey invaded the island of Cyprus in 1974, ethnically cleansing nearly 200,000 Greek Cypriots from their homes and replacing them with Turks. During the last years of the Ottoman Empire in the late 1800s and early 1900s, Turkish Muslims repeatedly massacred Bulgarians, Serbs and other Christian subject peoples who were perceived to be disobedient dhimmis, culminating in the outright Jihad genocide of Armenian Christians. To this day, Turkish authorities flatly deny that there was any systematic effort at forcing Armenians out of eastern Anatolia. Turkey instead claims that hundreds of thousands of Turks were killed by Armenians. Talking about the Armenian Genocide is literally banned by law.

In his article Green Money, Islamist Politics in Turkey, Michael Rubin in the Middle East Quarterly in 2005 warned against an ongoing re-Islamization of Turkey. Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s Justice and Reconciliation Party (Adalet ve Kalkinma Partisi, or AKP) swept to power in the parliamentary elections in 2002, aided by public disgust over corruption within long-feuding coalition parties but also by a substantial influx of Yesil Sermaye, “green money,” from wealthy Arab businessmen and oil-rich Middle Eastern states. Erdogan was a popular mayor of Istanbul in 1994-98 and worked hard to avoid repeating former mistakes of speaking too overtly about his long-term goals of reestablishing the Islamic profile of Turkey.

Prior to AKP’s election victory, Erdogan’s ally Abdullah Gül, who in 2007 became President of the Republic of Turkey despite opposition from secular forces, between 1983 and 1991 worked as a specialist at the Islamic Development Bank in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Islamic banks, especially those sponsored by the Saudis, have channeled billions of dollars to enterprises in Turkey and elsewhere. “The growth of the Islamic business sector is apparent across Turkey and appears intricately linked to the AKP’s rise. A decade ago, rural and conservative Turks tended to inhabit poorer sections of town and shop in mom-and-pop stores or outdoor markets while wealthier and secular Turks spent their money in modern shops and Western-style supermarkets. Green money investment has caused the pattern to blur.”

According to a former member of the AKP, “Before the 2002 election, there were rumors that an AKP victory would lead to an infusion of $10-$20 billion, mostly from Saudi Arabia. It looks like the rumors came true.” Wealthier countries such as Saudi Arabia and Malaysia have made their foreign aid to the AKP dependent on Turkey readjusting its position toward Israel. Turkey has since then become much more anti-Israeli, going from being something of a lukewarm ally to being a leader of Islamic hostility to the Jewish state. Turkish authorities have also taken a more active interest in the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC).

As writer Michael Rubin concluded back in 2005, “Today, in private conversations in teahouses and in the National Assembly, many Turkish officials discuss green money and AKP financial opacity as the new threat. Money buys the short-term popularity necessary to initiate long-term changes, be they in Turkey’s foreign or domestic policy. Under apparent Saudi influence, such changes will likely further erode Turkish secularism. If the AKP is able to translate money into power and power into money, then the main loser will be Turkish secularism. As an executive with one of Istanbul’s largest firms said, ‘The AKP is like a cancer. You feel fine, but then one day you start coughing blood. By the time you realize there’s a problem, it’s too far-gone.'”

During their years in power, the AKP have systematically dismantled many key reforms dating back to Kemalism and have neutered dozens of generals and other officers of senior ranks within the Army, traditionally the guardians of Atatürk’s legacy; the Army has intervened on a number of occasions in the past to uphold the secular nature of the state.

An ugly Turkish nationalism with barely concealed neo-Ottoman undertones is on the rise. In 2005, the Nazi leader Adolf Hitler’s Mein Kampf (“My Struggle”) topped the bestseller list in Turkey, second only to a book about a Turkish national hero detonating a nuclear bomb in Washington D.C, the capital city of its NATO “ally,” the USA. In return, both the Republican US President George W. Bush and his Democrat successor Barack Hussein Obama have openly pushed for full membership and access for nearly 80 million Turks to the European Union. So have several British Prime Ministers, including Tony Blair and David Cameron.

Millions of Turks already live within the EU in countries such as Belgium, the Netherlands and particularly Germany, which has a sizeable minority of Turkish descent. Turkish authorities are consciously trying to influence their behavior as well as voting patterns, thereby using them as a spearhead for Turkish Muslim influence in and colonization of Europe. The Turkish government in 2010 angered Turkish-German politicians by inviting them to an Istanbul conference and then urging them to resist social integration in their adopted homeland. Erdogan urged Turks living in foreign countries to take out citizenship of the new homelands — not to integrate, but rather to become more politically active, according to the website of the Germany’s Der Spiegel, Europe’s largest weekly magazine. Ali Ertan Toprak, deputy chairman of the Alevi community in Germany, told the news magazine that government representatives had said: “We have to inject European culture with Turkish.”

Participants told Spiegel that Erdogan repeated elements of his controversial speech in Germany in 2008 in which he said: “Assimilation is a crime against humanity.” The invitation to politicians and religious leaders of Turkish descent included lunch in a five-star hotel in Istanbul and offered to cover their travel costs. The title of the meeting was: “Wherever one of our countrymen is, we are there too.” It was organized by Erdogan’s reigning AKP.

Prime Minister Erdogan has repeatedly suggested that “Islamophobia” is a crime against humanity and that there is no such thing as moderate Islam vs. radical Islam, there is only Islam. He has also stated that the goal of Turkish foreign policy is to “restore the might of the Ottoman Empire,” something that will naturally cause concern among many Greeks, Serbs, Bulgarians, Romanians, Croats, Armenians and other abused former Ottoman subjects.

Srdja Trifkovic, the Serb American author of the excellent book Defeating Jihad: How the war on terror may yet be won, in spite of ourselves, warns against the rise of a neo-Ottoman Turkey. On March 9 2010, King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia presented the Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan with the Wahhabist kingdom’s most prestigious prize for his “services to Islam.” Erdogan earned the King Faisal Prize for having “rendered outstanding service to Islam by defending the causes of the Islamic nation.” As Mr.Trifkovic notes:

“In August 2008 Ankara welcomed Mahmoud Ahmadinejad for a formal state visit, and last year [2009] it announced that it would not join any sanctions aimed at preventing Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons. In the same spirit the AKP government repeatedly played host to Sudan’s President Omer Hassan al-Bashir — a nasty piece of jihadist work if there ever was one — who stands accused of genocide against non-Muslims. Erdogan has barred Israel from annual military exercises on Turkey’s soil, but his government signed a military pact with Syria last October and has been conducting joint military exercises with the regime of Bashir al-Assad. Turkey’s strident apologia of Hamas is more vehement than anything coming out of Cairo or Amman. (Talking of terrorists, Erdogan has stated, repeatedly, ‘I do not want to see the word ‘Islam’ or ‘Islamist’ in connection with the word ‘terrorism’!’) simultaneous pressure to conform to Islam at home has gathered pace over the past seven years, and is now relentless. . . . Ankara’s continuing bid to join the European Union is running parallel with its openly neo-Ottoman policy of re-establishing an autonomous sphere of influence in the Balkans and in the former Soviet Central Asian republics.”

There are currently serious cracks in the façade of Turkish secularism. We should remember that Iran, too, was perceived as being a moderate, modern country until a revolution brought the cleric and Jihadist terrorist sponsor Khomeini to power in 1979. The lesson we can draw from this is that Islam can lie dormant for generations, yet strike again with renewed vigor when the opportunity arises. Nearly a century after Atatürk implemented sweeping reforms to curtail Islamic influences in Turkey, Islam is making a roaring comeback in his country.

Kemalism never “cured” Islam; it could be likened to a drug treatment that held some symptoms of an illness temporarily in check, but as soon as the patient stopped taking the drugs the illness bounced back immediately. Kemalism kept Islam at bay for a while but never truly reformed it. If we stick with the analogy of caging a beast we can conclude that this strategy works only for as long as the beast is kept in chains and under close guard. Sooner or later, however, somebody like Erdogan may release it from its prison again.

A few observers claim that certain branches of Shia Islam are supposedly more tolerant than Sunni Islam. Shia is short for shiat Ali, the partisans of Ali. Its followers will be referred to as Shias here, but they are often called Shiites or Shi’ites in English. Fatimah (ca. AD 605-633), the daughter of Muhammad from his first marriage to Khadijah, married Ali ibn Abi Talib (ca. AD 600-661), Muhammad’s cousin and son-in-law, the fourth Caliph of the Sunnis and the last of the Rashidun (the “rightly guided” Caliphs who knew Muhammad personally) as well as the first Imam of Shia Islam. Fatimah and Ali in turn became the parents of Hasan and Husayn, the male grandsons of Muhammad who, despite his many wives and concubines surprisingly didn’t produce a single son who lived to adulthood. The Day of Ashura, the anniversary of Husayn ibn (son of) Ali’s “martyrdom” at the Battle of Karbala in Iraq in AD 680, is a major and bloody festival and day of mourning for Shia Muslims around the world.

Ali was one of the caliphs, “successors” to Muhammad as political leaders and “Commander of the Faithful” (but not divine messengers bringing additional revelations) following his death. They were Abu Bakr (rule AD 632-634), an early convert to Muhammad’s cause who married his daughter Aisha, then Omar or Umar Ibn al-Khattab during whose rule from 634-644 Arab armies went beyond the Arabian Peninsula to conquer Mesopotamia, Syria and parts of Iran and Egypt, followed by Uthman ibn Affan from 644-656 and thereafter Ali.

Shias believe that the Caliphate should pass down only through direct descendants of Muhammad via the marriage between Ali and Fatimah, the Ahl al-Bayt or “People of the House” [of the Prophet Muhammad]. The vast majority of modern Shias are “Twelvers” who recognize twelve spiritual leaders or Imams, the last of whom is currently believed to be in hiding but will eventually return. Iran is the stronghold of the Twelvers, but they also constitute the majority of the population in neighboring Iraq. There are sizeable Shia communities in the Yemen, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and India.

Yes, there are theological differences between Sunnis and Shias. These can be significant enough for Muslims themselves but for non-Muslims they are usually not important, apart from the possibility that ethnic and theological fissures between various groups of Muslims can be exploited by outsiders as a part of a “divide-and-rule” policy. Shias, too, want Islam to rule the world; advocate violent Jihad to achieve Islamic supremacy and have the same brutal discrimination of non-Muslims. To illustrate this we can think of the Ayatollah Khomeini (1900-1989), a senior Shia cleric who after the Iranian Revolution that saw the overthrow of the Shah of Iran in 1979 became the Supreme Leader of the newly established Islamic Republic of Iran. He was the ultimate political and religious authority in the country until his death. Since its inception, the IRI has been an extremely repressive state at home and a major sponsor of Jihad terrorism abroad. Shia Islam is not more peaceful than Sunni Islam, nor is it more tolerant, at least not if we’re talking about Twelvers. The Ismailis are somewhat better.

Ismailism is generally considered a branch of Shia Islam, the second largest sect of Shiaism but much smaller than the Twelvers. Aga Khan is the hereditary title of the Imam of the largest contemporary branch of Ismaili followers. The Ismailis were most active in medieval times through the Fatimids and the Qarmatians. Al-Azhar in Cairo, Egypt, for centuries the highest center of religious learning for Sunnis worldwide, was ironically founded around AD 970 under the Shia Fatimid Dynasty. They ruled parts of North Africa and the Middle East from the tenth to twelfth centuries and claimed descent from Fatimah, hence the name.

Combined, the adherents of the various branches of Shia Islam amount to less than fifteen percent of Muslims globally, the remaining 85-90% being Sunnis. This makes followers of Ismailism a minority of a minority whose international influence peaked a thousand years ago. Perhaps they are slightly more peaceful than the others and as such preferable, but they are also numerically marginal and therefore largely irrelevant in the greater scheme of things.

Another community that is frequently put under the Shia label is the Alevi community in Turkey. They have several million followers, but their religious beliefs are so different from those of Sunnis and even mainstream Shias when it comes to prayer, pilgrimage, mosque attendance and other core Islamic practices that they are at the very fringes of the Islamic religion, perhaps outside of its boundaries according to some of their many Sunni critics. Alevis praise Ali beyond what mainstream Shias do, comparable to the Alawis or Alawitesin Syria who are viewed with hostility by many Sunni Muslims. The Alevis and the Alawis are most likely too numerically marginal to become a dominant force any time soon, if ever.

The Druze make up a small sect that historically began as an offshoot of Ismaili Islam and whose close-knit communities number a few hundred thousand followers, primarily in the Levant (Syria, Lebanon, Israel and Jordan). Yet their beliefs are so distinct from those of other Muslims that, while Arabic-speaking, they are often classified as a separate religious group. Uniquely, the Druze in Israel participate in active military service in the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) alongside Jews, something which no Muslim community there has ever done.

My view is that as long as you start out with the texts used by orthodox Muslims — the Koran, the hadith and the Sira — it is more or less impossible to come up with a peaceful version of Islam. In principle it might be possible to change things by either adding more religious texts or by ignoring some of those that already exist. Both options are problematic, though.

There are the “Koran only” Muslims, who currently constitute an extremely small group of people. They advocate that Muslims should ignore the hadith and the Sira and rely solely on the Koran for guidance. Hadith might be translated as “narrative” or “report” (plural: ahadith, often simply called hadiths in English). They are narrations concerning the words and deeds of Muhammad and his companions, collectively creating a biography of his life. This is important as Muhammad is treated as the “living Koran” whose words and deeds, his Sunna, are considered authoritative and an important source of law for traditional schools of Islamic jurisprudence. While a very large number of presumably fabricated hadith were in circulation by the year 800, something Muslims freely admit, Islamic legal scholars tried to sort out more reliable collections dubbed sahih (“true” or “valid”). The two most highly respected collections of the six primary ones used by Sunnis are those gathered by Sahih Bukhari and Sahih Muslim. Both of them worked in the mid-800s AD, in other words more than two centuries after Muhammad is supposed to have died. Shias have their own hadith collections.

A major practical problem with the “Koran only” approach is that a great deal of information regarding traditional doctrines, including practices related to prayer, pilgrimage and the Five Pillars, are contained exclusively or primarily in extra-Koranic material such as the hadith and are not elaborated upon in any great detail in the Koran. The Koran itself refers to following the example of the Prophet, and that example is to a large extent explained in the hadith literature. Islam as we know it just wouldn’t make sense theologically without the hadith.

Moreover, an anti-hadith program would be extremely hard to implement in practice. Traditional sharia law carries the death penalty for apostates, and those who formally choose to ignore the hadith literature can easily be classified and treated as such by orthodox Muslims. Besides, if you remove the hadith literature this will take away some of the most aggressive and violent texts and examples, but the Koran itself has dozens of verses containing hatred for infidels or advocating Jihad, including violent struggle, against non-Muslims to impose Islamic rule on them. It would therefore at best provide a partial solution.

As we have seen, the major hadith collections were gathered a long time after Muhammad and all those who knew him were dead, assuming here that Muhammad as he appears from Islamic sources was an historical person who lived in present-day Mecca and Medina. There are scholars who dispute this, too. We should remember that although it is perfectly possible to question the historical authenticity of many hadith, the same could be said about parts of the Koran as well. It is very difficult and artificial for an objective scholar to claim that “we cannot trust any of the hadith, but the Koran is perfect and can be relied upon.” The Koran itself came into existence during a prolonged historical process taking many generations.

All things considered it is highly unlikely whether you could get the majority of the world’s Muslims to permanently abandon the hadith literature. Even if you managed to achieve this it would merely remove some of the intolerant texts, not the dozens of Jihad verses found in the Koran itself. The Koran-only approach to Islamic reform is therefore fundamentally flawed.

An even more radical approach would be to ignore the chapters identified with the Medina period and focus on the chapters of the Koran allegedly revealed in Mecca. This would reverse the standard doctrine of abrogation, which stipulates that if there is a conflict between two different Koranic verses then the verse that was revealed last takes priority. This creates a massive headache for champions of a “moderate” Islam because nearly all of the somewhat more tolerant verses and chapters in the Koran are identified with the Mecca period or shortly after the Hijra, the flight or migration of Muhammad and his earliest followers from Mecca to the city of Yathrib (Medina) in AD 622, which is the year when the Islamic calendar begins.

As soon as he was established in Medina, Muhammad became the political leader of an expanding group of people who conducted raiding parties/armed robberies against their opponents. As a consequence, the revelations became progressively more aggressive and violent, cancelling out earlier ones. The traditional interpretation is that the tolerance of Mecca was only because Muhammad and his followers then lacked the strength to intimidate their opponents into submission by brute force. In other words: The Meccan revelations constitute a special case, the Medinan revelations the general case of Islamic behavior.

At least one person in the 1960s and 70s argued that this principle of abrogation should be reversed, that the Mecca period constitutes the general case of Islamic behavior and the “true Islam.” This was the Sudanese Muslim writer Mahmud Muhammud Taha. Taha suggested that the violence of the Medina era was because their non-Muslim opponents at that point in time weren’t “mature” enough to adopt Islam peacefully and therefore had to be forced to do so, for their own good. Yet in our time, people are supposedly mature enough to recognize Islam as the One True Faith and adopt it voluntarily, hence violence is no longer required.

This sounds fine on paper, until you analyze the details of his arguments and discover that he retained the option of using violence against those “immature” individuals and peoples who do not quietly submit to Islam, which amounts to a highly traditional view of Jihad. The sword should be used as a “surgical tool” to cut them off from the body of society. He supported the idea of slavery on a moral basis today, not just as an historical fact. “Freedom” is identical with sharia and being a slave of Allah. Taha also approved of many of the most appalling aspects of sharia law, such as stoning people to death for adultery and whipping those who enjoy a glass of wine. Yet although Taha’s ideas fell far short of what is needed, he was nevertheless considered so controversial that he was executed in his native Sudan in 1985 as an apostate, an adult person who has willfully left the fold of Islam. His example perfectly illustrates the tremendous obstacles and dangers any potential Muslim reformer has to face.

Certain radical scholars such as the German linguist Christoph Luxenberg have suggested that parts of the Koran, especially some of the Meccan chapters, were originally based on pre-Islamic Christian texts written in Syriac or Syro-Aramaic, a Semitic language related to Classical Arabic. Not all critical scholars agree with this hypothesis, but if you take this line of thought seriously then it would fatally undermine the arguments presented by Mahmud Muhammud Taha because it would imply that the most peaceful and tolerant chapters of the Koran, the Meccan suras, are peaceful and tolerant in part because they are based on Christian texts. The much more violent Medinan chapters that were inspired by Muhammad and his companions, whoever they really were, are the most authentically Islamic, the “true Islam.”

As these examples demonstrate, reforming Islam by removing or ignoring some of the established texts is very difficult to achieve. Could it be possible to do the reverse, and soften the traditional texts by adding new material to supplement and dilute older texts rather than removing them? In theory, this might be possible. It has already been tried in real life. However, any such attempts will immediately run into powerful opposition from orthodox Muslims who hold that Muhammad was the “Seal of the Prophets” who brought the final revelations from Allah for all eternity to mankind in the form of the Koran. This implies that those who claim to bring new teachings to supplement the Koran will be viewed as imposters.

One personal story illustrating this dilemma is provided by that of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (ca.1839-1908), who was born in Qadian in Punjab in northwest India. He founded the so-called Ahmadiyya movement in 1889 and professed to be a divinely guided reformer and the Mahdi, a messianic figure expected by many (but not all) Muslims to appear before the Day of Judgment, the end of the world as we know it, to rid the Earth of wrongdoing and injustice.

Ghulam Ahmad authored dozens of books and reinterpreted Islam in an entirely new fashion, with far less emphasis on violent Jihad. Yet because of the teachings he added and the divinely inspired mission he claimed for himself most Muslims viewed him as a false prophet. His followers are considered non-Muslims in countries such as Pakistan and Saudi Arabia and are relentlessly persecuted even in a “moderate” Muslim majority country such as Indonesia.

The physicist Mohammad Abdus Salam (1926-1996) was born in then British-ruled India, present-day Pakistan. He received part of his education at the University of Cambridge in England and was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1979 for contributions to the theory of unified weak and electromagnetic interaction between elementary particles, making him one of very few individuals from a Muslim background to win a science Nobel and the only one so far to win in arguably the most prestigious category, that of physics. Ahmadis don’t count as “proper” Muslims, except if they do something great like winning a Nobel Prize, and barely even then. To make matters worse, he shared his Prize with two Jews, the physicists Sheldon Lee Glashow (born 1932) and Steven Weinberg (born 1933) from the USA.

He contributed to Pakistan’s nuclear program, but members of the Ahmadiyya community have been physically and legally harassed in Pakistan and charged with being unbelievers “impersonating Muslims.” The word “Muslim” has been erased from an epitaph engraved on the tomb of Abdus Salam, which used to read “the First Muslim Nobel Laureate.”

The Bahá’í Faith is a monotheistic religion with several million believers. It was born in the nineteenth century and sees itself as the continuation of the world’s major religions, not just Islam. Ali Muhammad Shirazi (1819-1850) from Shiraz, Iran at the age of 24 announced himself a messenger of God, rejected violence and holy war (Jihad), recognized the equality of women and took the title the Báb (“Gate”). He wrote numerous letters and books that combined constituted a new religious law. His followers were tortured and killed and he himself was executed in a public square in the city of Tabriz. His remains were eventually brought to a tomb on Mount Carmel in the city Haifa in present-day northern Israel.

Mirza Husayn Ali Nuri (1817-1892) from Iran, later known as Bahá’u’lláh (“Glory of God”) to his followers, announced his claim to a divine mission to the followers of the Báb. Those who accepted this became the first members of the Bahá’í Faith. The Turkish Sultan banished him to Akko, where he lived for many years. His remains were buried in a small building there known as the Shrine of Bahá’u’lláh. The scenic Bahá’í Gardens in Haifa and Akko have become popular sites for visitors. Bahá’u’lláh claimed to be the latest in a series of religious messengers to mankind from an almighty and omnipresent God, the previous of whom included such figures as Abraham, the Buddha, Jesus and Muhammad. Yet this view cannot be reconciled with the Islamic doctrine of Muhammad being the final Messenger of Allah.

Bahá’ís are without question more peaceful than most Muslims, but can they be considered Muslims? From an outsiders point of view, it could be said with considerable justification that although it claims to have a connection with previous religions, among them Islam, the Bahá’í Faith amounted to a totally new religion, complete with a set of canonical texts: the writings of the Báb and Bahá’u’lláh. Whereas Ahmadis are treated with suspicion they consider themselves Muslims and are normally referred to as a rather unorthodox Muslim community.

By contrast, Bahá’ís are generally referred to as a separate faith by both themselves and others. They went as far as changing the direction of prayers from Mecca to the Shrine of Bahá’u’lláh in Israel where their Prophet-Founder was buried. They are therefore viewed as apostates by virtually all Muslims, Shias and Sunnis alike, and are ruthlessly persecuted nearly everywhere in the allegedly tolerant Islamic world while they can openly practice their religion undisturbed among the Jews in the supposedly evil, oppressive state of Israel.

You can find what might be termed lax Islam or diluted Islam, yet this is not quite the same as a “moderate Islam,” despite what some observers like to think. “Lax Islam” is when its believers don’t formally change anything in the core religious texts, but simply choose to deemphasize them and be relaxed in implementing their teachings in real life. Many Sufis could fit into this category since they focus more in the supposedly inner, spiritual side of religion and less on outwardly following its legalistic details. Yet precisely for this reason, Sufis are often treated with corresponding suspicion by stricter Islamic scholars. Sufism has existed for over a thousand years, but it still hasn’t managed to create a tolerant Islamic world.

Besides, lax Islam will only provide non-Muslims with a temporary respite, not a lasting antidote to violent Jihad, since the core texts continue to exist. Sooner or later, somebody will come along who takes Islamic written texts seriously and decides to implement them. The Mughal Emperor Akbar the Great (1542-1605) in India was a relatively tolerant ruler for his time because he didn’t follow Islamic teachings, but then he was succeeded by Aurangzeb (1618-1707), a pious and serious Muslim who followed Islamic teachings and for that reason was extremely brutal when dealing with Hindus and other non-Muslims within his Empire.

Diluted Islam could be defined as societies where Islam was recently established and is therefore extensively mixed up with preexisting, un-Islamic practices. This is often cited by those who profess their hope in a “regional” and supposedly more tolerant version of Islam somewhere in the Balkans, Africa, India or Southeast Asia. Those who support this hypothesis typically state that Islam is not monolithic, but this becomes less and less true year by year thanks to rapid global communications. Pakistan has virtually wiped out its non-Muslim communities through relentless persecution and is a major sponsor of Jihad terrorism abroad. “Pakistani” or “Indian” Islam appears strikingly similar to Middle Eastern Islam or “desert Islam,” as the self-proclaimed reformist Irshad Manji has been known to talk about.

It is true that Muslims in parts of Indonesia have traditionally been less violent than Arab Muslims in the Middle East, but they are more recently converted peoples. The regional differences shrink continuously in our age of globalization as Islam becomes firmly established locally, as believers travel for pilgrimage to Mecca and as local groups get sponsored by Saudi Arabian oil money. If you look at Southeast Asia as a whole, Muslims kill thousands of non-Muslims in regions where they are a sizable minority, for instance in southern Thailand or the Philippines. In allegedly “moderate” Indonesia they have destroyed hundreds of Christian churches. Much the same goes for the Balkans in Southeast Europe.

In the city-state of Singapore, the Muslim minority benefits from the economic affluence generated by the predominately Chinese non-Muslim majority, but they can still cause problems and are kept under close control in a somewhat authoritarian society. Malaysia has been a moderate economic success story mainly because Muslims became a demographic majority not too long ago. Discrimination against non-Muslims is increasing there now.

All things considered, empirical evidence from different continents strongly suggests a common pattern wherein Muslims create repression where they constitute the majority and violent unrest where they constitute the minority. This happens regardless of the ethnic and racial composition of the local population. The only common factor is Islam and the violent supremacist teachings contained in the central texts of this religion. As long as these texts remain unchanged and in force, so will Muslim violence against non-Muslims everywhere.

This leaves another hypothetical possibility for significant change of Islam: That a major armed confrontation with groups of non-Muslims results in such a crushing defeat that it totally shatters the confidence Muslims have in the supremacy of their Faith and their Umma. A Jewish gentleman once pointed out to me that when Roman forces destroyed the Temple in Jerusalem, the earthly center of Judaism, Jewish scriptures didn’t change per se but were reinterpreted to fit a new situation in the diaspora, as Jews were scattered in different corners of the world. An equivalent to this in Islam would be the destruction of the major mosques in Mecca and Medina. This analogy is imperfect because Judaism has never advocated world conquest and does not exist as a vehicle for achieving global military dominance. Islam does.

Given that Muslims are currently engaged in open conflicts with most of the global centers of power at the same time, and given that many non-Muslims from North America via Western Europe, Israel, Russia and India to China have nuclear weapons, the destruction of Mecca in the course of the twenty-first century should be treated as a real possibility. What kind of effect such an event would have on the Islamic psyche is hard to predict. Perhaps it would shatter Islam completely because the Islamic mentality is based on dominance and supremacy; perhaps it would create a tidal wave of Muslim anger and global Jihad. It is said that those who live by the sword will also die by it. Islam has certainly lived by the sword. Perhaps the creed will exit world history just as it entered: With a great burst of violence.

To sum up, it is very difficult to see how Islam, based on its existing texts, can be changed into something that is peaceful enough to be satisfactory from a non-Muslim point of view. It is a highly unpleasant thought that a religion with over a billion adherents worldwide is inherently violent and incompatible with a modern society. It is understandable that some observers dislike this idea so much that they create an illusory reality where this isn’t the case, but an honest, straightforward reading of Islamic texts leaves us with few other conclusions.

What, then, is to be done? In the short run, damage control. Islam needs to be caged and restrained as much as practically possible and Muslim Jihadists must be deprived of the financial and technological resources to harm us. Wherever possible, non-Muslims should seek to physically separate themselves from Muslims. In the long run, one can only hope that Islam will be broken by its confrontation with modernity before it forces mankind into a massive confrontation that could cause tremendous human suffering before the dust settles.

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Fjordman: Die Europäische Union und die „Schönheit“ der Minarette

Posted by paulipoldie on April 24, 2010

Jihad Watch 20 April 2010
Von Fjordman
Übersetzung: LIZ für EuropeNews

Inspiriert von Bat Ye’ors bahnbrechendem Werk Eurabia: The Euro-Arab Axis, schrieb ich im Jahr 2008 mein Buch Defeating Eurabia. Meine damalige Schlussfolgerung, zu der ich auch heute noch stehe, war, dass die Europäische Union für den europäischen Kontinent eine Bedrohung darstellt und aufgelöst werden muss.

„Die EU hat akzeptiert, dass die Union erweitert werden soll, um den muslimischen Mittleren Osten und Nordafrika mit einzubeziehen. Die EU hat akzeptiert, dass sich mehrere zehn Millionen Immigranten aus hauptsächlich muslimischen Ländern des nördlichen Afrikas in den nächsten Jahren in Europa niederlassen dürfen. Dies ist vermutlich ‚gut für die Wirtschaft’. Man plant, die Scharia zu implementieren für die Millionen von Muslimen, die man dazu einlädt, sich in Europa niederzulassen. Man hat bereits strengere Antirassismusgesetze erlassen, indem man klar gestellt hat, dass ‚Islamophobie’ eine Form des Rassismus darstellt, und man kooperiert mit islamischen Ländern, um die Schulbücher umzuschreiben, um den europäischen Kindern ein positives Bild des Islam zu vermitteln. Schließlich entwickelt die EU gerade einen Haftbefehl, der vorschreibt ,,dass diejenigen, die wegen schwerer Delikte angeklagt sind, zum Beispiel Rassismus, festgenommen werden können, ohne unangemessene Einmischung des Landes in dem sie leben. Auf den Punkt gebracht, die EU gibt ihren gesamten Kontinent dem Islam preis, indem man die gewachsenen nationalen Kulturen zerstört, und bereitet sich darauf vor, diejenigen zu verfolgen, die mit dieser Politik nicht einverstanden sind. Dies stellt den größten organisierten Betrug in der westlichen Geschichte dar, und wird als Sieg der ‚Toleranz’ gefeiert.“

Diejenigen, die immer noch glauben, dass Eurabia hauptsächlich eine „Verschwörungstheorie“ ist, sollten sich einmal näher anschauen, wie die europäischen Behörden das schweizerische Bauverbot für Minarette behandeln, die ein sichtbares Symbol der islamischen Vorherrschaft darstellen. Zum Beispiel benutzten die osmanischen Türken das Minarett als eines ihrer Elemente, um optisch passend herauszustellen, welche byzantinischen Kirchen eingenommen und in Moscheen verwandelt worden waren. Die antike bulgarische Stadt Nessebar war Teil des Ersten und Zweiten Bulgarischen Reiches vom siebten bis zum vierzehnten Jahrhundert nach Christus und hat den Bau zahlreicher mittelalterlicher Kirchen miterlebt. Aber wie der Rest des Balkans, so erlebte sie einen steilen kulturellen und ökonomischen Abstieg, der begann, nachdem die türkischen Muslime das Gebiet erobert hatten.

Dies wird beschrieben in dem Buch The Byzantine Legacy in Eastern Europe, von Lowell Clucas. Obwohl viele Kirchen zerstört oder in Moscheen verwandelt wurden während dieser Eroberungen, haben doch einige überlebt. Unter vorteilhaften Bedingungen konnten alte Kirchen restauriert oder sogar einige Neue erbaut werden, obwohl dies gegen die Scharia ist. Jedoch (Seite 61), „ Die physische Kleinheit dieser Kirchen ist ein korrekter Maßstab für den generellen Status, den die christliche Kirche im osmanischen Reich genoss. Sie ist auch ein angemessener Maßstab für die wirtschaftliche Kraft seiner Schutzherren: eine bescheidene christliche Mittelklasse und in der Regel kleine klösterliche Gemeinschaften.“ Das offizielle Verbot, die Glocken zu läuten wurde streng durchgesetzt in allen Gebieten, außer den Randgebieten unter osmansicher Herrschaft, weil die Türken den Klang der Glocken nicht ausstehen konnten. The Byzantine Legacy in Eastern Europe, Seite 68:

„Nach anderen bekannten islamischen Ansichten, dachte man, die Glocken würden böse Geister anziehen, oder die Engel fern halten. Es gab nicht nur eine strenge Politik, die deren Gebrauch verbat, sondern es gab offensichtlich fortschreitende Versuche Glocken komplett auszulöschen. Die wenigen überlebenden Beispiele mittelalterlicher Glocken wurden erhalten und es scheint so, als ob man sie vergraben hat, um sie vor den türkischen Säuberungen zu retten. Diese allgemeine türkische Ansicht über Glocken und die daraus resultierende Politik ihren Gebrauch zu verbieten, hinterließ einen Eindruck auf die orthodoxe Kirchenarchitektur. Der türkische Zorn war nicht allein gegen die Glocken gerichtet, sondern auch gegen architektonische Formen, die damit in Verbindung gebracht wurden – Glockentürme. Ihre weithin sichtbare Präsenz innerhalb der Silhouette einer Stadt, muss von den Moslems als ungewollter Wettbewerb mit ihren Minaretten wahrgenommen worden sein. Die Demontage von Glockentürmen wurde deshalb zur Norm. Archäologische Arbeiten an Kirchen im ganzen Land, das einst von den Byzantinern beherrscht wurde, lassen den Schluss zu, dass es weit mehr Kirchtürme gegeben haben muss, als man auf den ersten Blick wahrnimmt. Tatsächlich überlebten einige gut erhaltene Kirchtürme, insbesondere unter den städtischen Kirchen, nur deshalb, weil sie von den Türken zu Minaretten umfunktioniert wurden.“

Die Befreiung der Balkanstaaten, die der türkischen Herrschaft folgte, erlebte den Bau viel größerer Kirchen und Kathedralen im südöstlichen Europa, von Skopje bis nach Sofia. In Athen, der Hauptstadt des befreiten Griechenlands, wurde zwischen 1842 und 1862 eine neue orthodoxe Kathedrale gebaut, indem man den Marmor von 72 zerstörten Kirchen benutzte. Innen befinden sich farbenprächtige Fresken in byzantinischem Stil und die Gräber von zwei Heiligen, die von den Türken getötet worden waren: der Heilige Philotei (1522-1589) wird geehrt, weil er griechische Frauen freigekauft hat, die in türkischen Harems versklavt worden waren. Gregor V, Patriarch von Konstantinopel, wurde im Jahr 1821 gehenkt und in den Bosporus geworfen, während der griechischen Aufstände.

Die Silhouette der bulgarischen Hauptstadt Sofia wird von der großartigen Alexander Nevsky Kathedrale dominiert, eine der größten östlichen orthodoxen Kathedralen der Welt, deren Bau im Jahr 1882 begann und die von dem russischen Architekten Alexander Pomerantsev (1849-1918) entworfen worden war. Ihr 45 Meter hoher goldvertäfelter Dom ist nur ein wenig kleiner als derjenige der Hagia Sophia in Konstantinopel. Die Sankt Markus Kirche im Zentrum von Belgrad, Serbien, wurde in den 30er Jahren gebaut und gehört zu den höchsten orthodoxen Kirchen des Balkans.

Die alten Regeln, die es auf dem Balkan gab, um die nicht-Muslime zu unterdrücken, werden nun ins westliche Europa exportiert, zum Beispiel im Jahr 2010 nach Großbritannen, durch die muslimische Immigration. Nach islamischem Recht, dürfen Dhimmis – hauptsächlich Juden und Christen unter dem „Schutz“ des islamischen Staates – nicht öffentlich Wein oder Schweinefleisch ausstellen, oder Kirchenglocken klingen lassen oder Kreuze zeigen, die Tora oder Gospels laut rezitieren, um ihre Beerdigungen öffentlich anzuzeigen und Festtage begehen, weil dies die Muslime, die in dieser Gegend leben beleidigt. Robert Spencer schreibt in seinem Buch Stealth Jihad:

„Am 13. Oktober warnte der römisch-katholische Erzbischof von Izmir, Türkei, Giuseppe Germano Bernardini, die Synode der europäischen Bischöfe vor einem ‚klaren Programm’ unter den Muslimen, Europa ‚zurückzuerobern’. Während eines offiziellen Treffens über den islamisch-christlichen Dialog’, schrieb er, ‚sprach eine maßgebliche muslimische Person zu den teilnehmenden Christen, und an einem Punkt sagte er sehr leise und bestimmt: Dank eurer demokratischen Gesetze werden wir euch unterwandern; dank unserer religiösen Gesetze werden wir euch beherrschen.’ Diese Dominanz, fuhr er fort, hat schon begonnen – ‚mit den Petro Dollars’, die man dazu nutzen sollte, Arbeit im armen Norden Afrikas zu schaffen oder in den Ländern des Mittleren Ostens, aber man baut damit Moscheen und Kulturcenter in christlichen Ländern mit islamischer Immigration, inklusive Rom, dem Zentrum der Christenheit. Wie können wir in allen diesen Aussagen das klare Programm der Expansion und der Wiedereroberung ignorieren?’ Bernardini hat auch eine andere pikante muslimische Äußerung über die islamische Vorherrschaft aufgezeichnet: ’Während eines anderen islamisch-christlichen Treffens, die immer von den Christen organisiert werden, fragte ein christlicher Teilnehmer die anwesenden Muslime, warum sie noch nicht einmal ein solches Treffen organisiert hätten. Die muslimischen Autoritäten die anwesend waren antworteten mit den folgenden Worten: ’Warum sollten wir? Ihr könnt uns nichts beibringen und wir können nichts lernen.’“

Spencer warnt, dass „durch diese massive Immigration und die offizielle Dhimmitude der europäischen Führer, die Muslime heute fertig stellen werden, was sie über ein Jahrhundert lang versucht, aber nicht geschafft haben: Europa zu erobern.“

Sie werden dabei aktiv unterstützt von europäischen Behörden. Der Europarat, in enger Zusammenarbeit mit der EU, die Organisation der islamischen Konferenz (OIC), die arabische Liga und andere islamische Organisationen, arbeiten daran, mit allen notwendigen Mitteln, die „Islamophobie“ in Europa zu bekämpfen. Im Februar 2010, einige Monate nach dem Referendum, das die Minarette in der Schweiz untersagte, starteten die COJEP International und EMISCO (Europäische Muslim Initiative für sozialen Zusammenhang) mit Hilfe des Europarats und der OIC einen Wettbewerb um das schönste bestehende Minarett Europas zu küren. Nach deren Meinung, sind Moscheen zu einer „dauerhaften Ergänzung“ unserer städtischen Landschaft geworden, und dass sich die westlichen Bewohner daran gewöhnen sollten:

„Es ist jedoch ein Unglück, dass kürzlich einige populistische Politiker und ein Bereich der Medien die Minarette zu einer Sache gemacht haben, um die Grundrechte zu beschneiden. Als Resultat wurden ethnische und religiöse Minderheiten angegriffen und Hassdelikte gegen muslimische Menschen haben sich in Europa verbreitet. Es ist daher wichtig, dass die universelle friedliche Präsenz des Islams sichtbar wird und ihre Anhänger in der Lage sind ihre Religion offen zu praktizieren, wie das bei anderen Religionen auch der Fall ist. Dieser Photowettbewerb soll auch die unangebrachten Ängste und Vorurteile in europäischen Gesellschaften entfernen, dass der Islam und die Muslime die westliche Kultur und deren Werte untergraben.“

Der Gewinner wird auf einer Pressekonferenz vorgestellt werden, die das Europäische Parlament am 20 April 2010 abhalten wird. Eine Ausstellung der schönsten Bilder von Minaretten und Moscheen wird vom Europarat gegen Ende dieses Jahres gezeigt werden. Wie wir gesehen haben, ist ein Minarett das Symbol der islamischen Vorherrschaft und Dominanz über nicht-Muslime. Das EU Parlament wird so das „schönste“ Symbol der islamischen Kolonisierung lobpreisen und die Unterwerfung der eingeborenen Bevölkerung eines gesamten Kontinents unter die islamische Herrschaft. Es kann an diese Tatsache für den europäischen Kontinent keine bessere Erinnerung geben, dass die EU nicht nur ein aktiver Kollaborateur der Zerstörung der europäischen Kultur ist, sondern auf mehrere Weisen sogar sein Hauptantrieb. Die langfristige Lösung dieses Problems ist, die muslimische Immigration in alle westlichen Nationen auf Dauer zu beenden, solche Organisationen wie die EU und die CoE abzuschaffen und aufzulösen und den Multikulturalismus los zu werden.


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Fjordman: Review of Christopher Caldwell’s Reflections on the Revolution in Europe

Posted by paulipoldie on February 13, 2010

Review of Christopher Caldwell’s Reflections on the Revolution in Europe
by Fjordman

This is a review of Christopher Caldwell’s 2009 book Reflections on the Revolution in Europe. Let me first start with the positive: Mr. Caldwell is not a bad man. He sees through the rhetoric of Tariq Ramadan, for instance, which makes him superior to the majority of Western journalists, although that is admittedly not difficult to achieve given the terrible quality of Western media these days. The problem is that the ground he covers in his book has already been covered by others, for example Daniel Pipes in his posts or Bruce Bawer in While Europe Slept. This is, in other words, not a pioneering work, and while Caldwell may be better than the bulk of journalists on some issues he is nevertheless not good enough.

Although he does indicate that importing Muslims from, say, Somalia or the Yemen may not work out like previous waves of immigration he doesn’t say anything substantial about whether North Americans or Europeans should therefore halt Muslim immigration. As Claire Berlinski wrote in a review, “Caldwell’s book raises many such questions. It does not answer them. The strength of this book is not in its original reporting, of which there is little, or the solutions it offers, because there are none. What it offers instead is unusual lucidity and comprehensiveness; a reader unfamiliar with the debate would be, upon finishing it, well-informed.”

On the other hand, for a reader who is already familiar with these subjects he adds little that is new. Even when he briefly touches upon important subjects he soon moves on to others, leaving an informed reader feeling unsatisfied. Christopher Caldwell points out that the European Union was created in Western Europe under an American political umbrella during the Cold War and that “The EU, although neither Americans nor Europeans are fond of admitting it, is the institutional expression of the Americanization of Europe.” That could have made for an interesting discussion, yet he does not cover the subject in sufficient detail.

He also asks “whether you can have the same Europe with different people. The answer is no.” But again, he quickly moves on to other topics. In my view, the question is whether you can have the same of any culture with totally different peoples, and the likely answer to that is no. Nobody in their right mind would ever claim that you could exchange the entire population of South Korea with Somalis and that this would be OK as long as the Somalis “preserved Korean culture,” as if they could or would do so. Yet this totally absurd claim is exactly what the media keep repeating when it comes to Iraqis in Sweden, Pakistanis in Britain, Turks in Germany and other immigrant groups in white majority Western nations.

Caldwell states in his book that “Being tough on Muslim foreigners and nice to Muslim citizens will comfort Europeans only to the extent that they maintain the idea that immigration is something temporary and reversible. It no longer is. Europeans can only hope that newcomers, especially Muslim newcomers, will assimilate peaceably.”

The problem is that Muslims have never “assimilated peaceably” anywhere, from Thailand via India or the Balkans to Canada, which means that Mr. Caldwell essentially recommends that Europeans should lean back, watch TV and quietly wait for a miracle as their continent is being destroyed in front of their eyes. It is a well-documented fact that organizations such as the Muslim Brotherhood and the Organization of the Islamic Conference have been allowed to infiltrate Western countries and institutions, which means that what we are in many cases dealing with deliberate acts of state-sponsored colonization. If non-Europeans are allowed to defend their lands against colonization, by force if necessary, then I see not reason why Europeans cannot and should do the same thing, which we have done repeatedly in the past. If Algerians can expel French intruders from their country, why can native Frenchmen not expel North African Muslim intruders form theirs? Why the anti-white double standard?

Whatever is going to happen in Western Europe over the coming decades is not going to be peaceful. In 2010 there are already conditions resembling civil war in many French and certain Dutch, British, German, Italian and even Scandinavian suburbs; Kalashnikov rifles are popular in immigrant neighborhoods in the EU capital of Brussels, whereas members of the Flemish party the Vlaams Belang who staged a peaceful demonstration against the Islamization of their country were brutally harassed by the Belgian authorities after the Socialist Islamophile mayor of Brussels had banned their demonstration. And we haven’t even mentioned the ridiculous trial against the Dutch Islam-critic Geert Wilders, which began early in 2010 and is likely to last for a long time, supported by both Dutch and EU authorities.

This brings us to the greatest weakness in Reflections on the Revolution in Europe. I searched in vain for any references to the writer Bat Ye’or and couldn’t come across a single one in 350 pages of text. I notice that during a debate regarding his book the author stated frankly that “Eurabia is not a word that I use in my book. This literature is not stuff that I’m terribly conversant with.” Writing about the Islamization of Europe and not mentioning the Eurabia theory and literature is like writing about the theory of evolution and failing to mention Charles Darwin. That’s not good enough for an author of Christopher Caldwell’s stature.

Unfortunately, he is far from the only one to make this mistake. Mainstream media such as the magazine The Economist have made the same error repeatedly. An article in the magazine Newsweek with the front page image and title “The Myth of Eurabia” appeared in July 2009. It rejected any possibility of a future Islamization of Europe and made no reference to the pioneer study from 2005 by Bat Ye’or Eurabia: The Euro-Arab Axis. I have double-checked all of Bat Ye’or’s claims in my own book Defeating Eurabia and have found them to be correct; the European Union and European authorities are actively participating in the Islamization of Europe through Muslim immigration and agreements with the Islamic world.

All things considered I cannot recommend Caldwell’s book. I do not question his writing skills, and he does make a few worthwhile points here and there. However, there are other books that have the same qualities and none of the same shortcomings as his one does. Perhaps you can make the claim that Reflections on the Revolution in Europe could be a “gentle” introduction to the subject for those with little prior knowledge of it, but the situation is getting so serious, with the possibility of Iranian mullahs acquiring nuclear weapons in the not-too-distant future, that the time for “gently” informing the public is long gone in my view.

I would recommend basically everything written by Robert Spencer. Mr. Spencer’s greatest strength is that he has the ability to combine impeccable knowledge of Islamic doctrines and history with a way of presenting it that is accessible to a mainstream audience. Bat Ye’or’s books are groundbreaking and important. The Legacy of Jihad by Andrew Bostom should be considered required reading for all those who are interested in Islam. It is the best and most complete book currently available on the subject in English and possibly in any language. Ibn Warraq’s books are excellent, starting with Leaving Islam. Understanding Muhammad by the Iranian ex-Muslim Ali Sina is worth reading, as are Defeating Jihad by Serge Trifkovic and A God Who Hates by Wafa Sultan. Global Jihad by Patrick Sookhdeo is valuable, especially for a British audience but for others as well.

In his work The Islamic Challenge in Europe Raphael Israeli, Professor of Islamic, Middle Eastern and Chinese history at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem in Israel, is not thrilled about the failed American policy of exporting democracy to the Islamic world:

“Democracy, in spite of all its drawbacks, was found to be best fitted for Western culture, but no one can determine what is adequate for others. Any civilization ultimately gets the regime it deserves, for tyranny has been more of a norm in Muslim countries than otherwise. If this is their domestic choice, or as long as they do not rise against it, it should not concern outsiders. Where the West should be concerned is the outward conduct of the regimes in Muslim countries. When they adopt policies that threaten their neighbors, intimidate them or harm their interests, and those interests coincide with the West’s, then the latter has the right, indeed the obligation, to retaliate in order to check Muslim expansionism, remove its threats and secure its own and its allies’ interests. . . . The Muslim world should not be permitted to hold to its belief that only its religious tenets are holy and all the rest are violable.”

In January 2010 the American columnist Diana West, author of The Death of the Grown-Up and Vice President of the International Free Press Society, at her website published a letter from a US soldier stationed in Iraq who lamented how Americans have placed themselves “in the service of Islam” worldwide. According to him the September 11, 2001 Jihadist attacks in the United States achieved success beyond the wildest dreams of their Islamic sponsors:

“They thrust Islam to the center of the world; they undoubtedly caused more people to learn about Islam than would have prior to their attacks. And the attacks combined with the near non-response of the U.S. doubtlessly gained them converts. Furthermore, what response the United States did produce resulted in the establishment, enrichment, and training of the officially Islamic nations of Iraq and Afghanistan, and the enrichment and training of countless other Muslim nations around the globe. Islam now stands better suited than ever to wage jihad across the world. The September 11 attacks also resulted in Muslims being portrayed as victims around the world (thanks to their leftist allies) and helped them (again, with an assist from their leftist allies) advance their jihad even as Muslims and leftists further vilified Christianity, America, and Western values. And finally the crowning achievement of the September 11 Islamic attacks: eight years after them the United States places as its leader a person whom can at best be described as an anti-American, racist, Islamic sympathizer (and who has the same name as an infamous Islamic dictator). This is stunning. It is bizarre. It is incomprehensible. Yet it is our nightmarish reality.”

This result was sadly predictable. I made a thoroughly analysis in 2006 and 2007, which was published in my long essay/ online booklet Is Islam Compatible With Democracy?, in which I concluded that current Western policies made no sense at all. Serious Western thinkers before the French Revolution did not think of “democracy” as an unqualified good in every given situation. Even at the best of times Islamic culture is incompatible with the positive qualities that such a system may have yet it is perfectly compatible with some of its most serious flaws, such as the tyranny of the majority or elective tribalism.

I concluded back then that “A democracy cannot be established in a genuinely Islamic country, at least not if ‘democracy’ means anything more than the mere act of voting, with no restraints on state power and no safeguards for minorities. This is simply an advanced form of mob rule. If the meaning of ‘democracy’ expands to include constitutional government, secular jurisprudence, the rule of law and equality before the law, and above all freedom of speech, then no – constitutional democracy cannot be reconciled with Islam. It is a waste of time and money to make the attempt. Non-Muslims currently have the wrong focus. Trying to export democracy to Islamic countries such as Iraq is futile. As American blogger Lawrence Auster has pointed out, we should rather be protecting our own democracies at home against Islam.”

As I’ve shown in my essay Do we want an Islamic Reformation?, we should not wait for an Islamic Reformation that will either never materialize or will imply a return to pure Islam, which means more Jihad violence. Islam cannot be reconciled with our way of life. There is no moderate Islam. There can be moderate Muslims, but they can turn into Jihadists tomorrow or can lie to deceive infidels, which is called taqiyya and kitman and is widely practiced in Islam. There is no way for us to tell the difference. Those who want to understand this can read my essays about “moderate Islam” and “Why We Cannot Rely on Moderate Muslims.”

I recommend the same policy as advocated for years by Hugh Fitzgerald of Jihad Watch, namely separation and containment of the Islamic world as well as exploiting internal divisions and weaknesses among Muslims, of which they have many. It is possible that at some point even this policy will not be sufficient, but it is the very minimum that is acceptable. This will require, among other things, halting all forms of Muslim immigration indefinitely and compelling Muslims who desire sharia to leave Western lands permanently.


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Fjordman: Toxic Islam – A Food Theory of Culture

Posted by paulipoldie on January 23, 2010

I have been developing a “food theory of culture” with one of my friends. A good meal should consist of a variety of foods. Even excellent ingredients will become boring if you rely on just one or two of them all the time. What makes a fine meal is not just fine ingredients and a competent cook but the overall balance between the various ingredients, where the totality is greater than the sum of the parts. You need something salty, something sweet, something spicy and something refreshing. Focusing on each individual component and stating with certainty that “this is the thing that created the success” is a mistake, but a very common one.

As it happens, food is one of the aspects of life where I will concede that Asians often outperform Westerners, and where southern Europeans frequently outperform northern Europeans. There are many Italian restaurants in Britain, but few British restaurants in Italy. There aren’t that many Dutch, Scandinavian or German restaurants in other regions, either, compared to the Chinese, Indian or Thai restaurants you can encounter all around the world.

There are certain minerals and vitamins that are necessary to sustain life. However, it is also possible to get too much of them. Theoretically speaking, you can die from drinking too much water; just because drinking a couple of liters of it per day is healthy does not mean that drinking twenty times as much of it is twenty times as healthy. You could argue that the modern West suffers from a form of cultural malnutrition; we are being force-fed a steady diet of cultural junk food which systematically deprives us of minerals vital to our mental health while we are becoming fat and lazy. At the same time, we digest far too much of some ingredients that can be beneficial in smaller amounts, above all self-criticism and altruism.

The most common flaw in many cultures is a total lack of self-criticism or appreciation of “the Other.” Islamic culture constitutes an extreme case of this problem. Muslims will NEVER concede, either individually or as a group, any flaws of their own. It’s always the fault of the Jews, the Hindus, the Crusaders, the Americans etc. This blame game is deeply unhealthy in the long run because it prevents real progress. One of the beneficial aspects of Christianity is that it states that all human beings are sinners. Because of this it is not necessarily shameful to admit that you are flawed since all human beings are so by definition. Admitting the possibility that you could be wrong means that you can address your flaws and work to reduce or perhaps remove them. This will be impossible as long as you consistently project all of your flaws unto others, as Muslims and many Africans in particular often do.

A culture that never admits its flaws can survive for a long time, yet its progress will be seriously impeded. In contrast, a society that considers itself just one big flaw will not survive for long as it will be unable to defend itself. This is where the white West is today. Our self-criticism, which runs deep in our psyche, is a virtue provided that it is counterbalanced by a healthy dose of self-confidence. If you remove the latter ingredient then the first one, which used to be a virtue, suddenly becomes a vice. Again, the key word is “balance,” not first and foremost the individual ingredients, although that matters, too. Self-confidence is like vitamin C, which means that we currently suffer from a potentially fatal case of cultural scurvy.

If we stick to our food analogy I would claim that while many ingredients can be beneficial if you consume them in modest amounts, a few ingredients are toxic to your body regardless of the amount. Islam would in my view constitute the most obvious case of this. During the 1990s, people involved with publishing Salman Rushdie’s novel The Satanic Verses were murdered in Japan and attempted murdered in Norway, despite the fact that Muslims constituted less than one percent of the population in these countries at the time. This demonstrates just how toxic Islam is and how quickly it can destroy any formerly free society.


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Surviving the Coming Crash

Posted by paulipoldie on December 3, 2009

by Baron Bodissey

The Fjordman Report
The noted blogger Fjordman is filing this report via Gates of Vienna.
For a complete Fjordman blogography, see The Fjordman Files. There is also a multi-index listing here.

As I have stated my essay The Coming Crash, I think we need to realize that the current ideological order is broken and beyond repair. There will probably some sort of pan-Western economic and social collapse in the not-too-distant future; I fear this is too late to avoid by now. The people who support the ruling paradigm are too powerful, and the paradigm itself contains so many flaws, that it cannot be fixed. It needs to crash. Instead of wasting time and energy on attempting to fix what cannot be fixed we need to prepare as best as we can for the coming crash and hopefully regroup to create a stronger and healthier culture afterward.

White GuiltWe are currently in the middle of the White Guilt Gold Rush. If you are a white Westerner you may not have fully realized this, but I can assure you that the rest of the world knows this. The trick is to keep the white man on the defensive and vaguely guilty at all times so that he can be squeezed for money. The climate quotas for carbon dioxide constitute a thinly disguised form of global Socialism through the UN-sponsored redistribution of wealth.

The recent scientific scandal about fake data regarding man-made global warming is just the tip of the iceberg. There are currently so many different layers of lies from “gender equality” via IQ differences to climate that it is virtually impossible to deal with all of them. Our entire society has essentially become one big lie. Our media, our schools and our political leaders repeat these lies every single day; those daring to question them are immediately ostracized.

EU Skull Dragon
Since the EU has forced through the EU Constitution/Lisbon Treaty and in essence abolished not just popular influence on EU policies but dissolved dozens of nation states, the self-appointed European elites have in effect banned any legal opposition to their rule. It is no longer possible to formally oppose their policies within the regular political channels. Given that the same elites appear hell-bent on running the entire continent into the ground, this leaves the options of rebellion or a structural collapse. I don’t think we will see open rebellion just yet, although this could change if the economy deteriorates further. This means that the most likely way out now is a structural collapse, and I fear that’s exactly what we are going to get.
– – – – – – – –
Didn’t the Obama Administration with international aid “save” the world from a looming financial crisis? Of course they didn’t. The main problem for the USA is that the national debt keeps rising while the national IQ keeps falling. This hasn’t changed one bit in the past year. On the contrary, it is worse now than it was before, and it looks like it will be worse still next year and the year after that. As long as this situation remains unchanged, my bet is that the price of gold will continue to rise as people seek safe harbor from the collapsing US dollar.

Although other industrialized countries have heavy debt loads, too, the case of the United States is especially serious because of its sheer size. Had the USA been a private person he would probably have been declared bankrupt a long time ago. But the United States is not a private person; it is still the world’s largest economy and has the world’s largest armed forces. As writer Takuan Seiyo states in the latest installment of his brilliant From Meccania to Atlantis series: “The strongest, most admired country in the world until just a few years ago is now a cautionary tale of the wages of sin and stupidity told to Chinese schoolchildren.”

I don’t know what the future holds for the USA. It could split apart along ethic and ideological lines in a Second American Civil War, or it could become just another Latin American country along with Canada, in which case all of America will be Latin America.

I could add that I don’t hate Latin America. If we do end up with a series of nasty Multicultural civil wars in Western Europe it is possible that some areas of South America could be better places to live than Birmingham or Marseilles. However, Latin America never has been and probably never will be a major force in world politics. If the United States declines this will shift global power back to Eurasia, where it has been throughout most of human history. China will in all likelihood be a leading player and perhaps the dominant one.

I am increasingly convinced that some of the developments we are witnessing are deliberate and that there is a long-term goal among certain powerful groups of breaking down Western nations to facilitate the creation of a global oligarchy. The lies we are being served are virtually identical in every single Western country. I’ve had discussions about this with my Chinese friend Ohmyrus who thinks this is caused by a structural flaw in our democratic system. I don’t necessarily disagree with that, but there are other forces at work here as well.

According to Herman Van Rompuy, the newly-installed President of the European Union, the climate conference in Copenhagen is a step towards the “global management” of our planet. As author Bat Ye’or has demonstrated and as I have confirmed in my own book Defeating Eurabia, the EU is actively collaborating with Islamic countries to rewrite the textbooks in European countries to make them more “Islam-friendly.”

Euro MedIt is well-documented that there are detailed long-term plans to expand the EU to include Muslim North Africa and the Middle East. This has been publicly confirmed by several high-ranking officials, including the British Foreign Minister in 2007. One newspaper leaked EU plans to import 50 million (!) more Africans to Europe in the coming decades, although urban communities across Western Europe are already in the process of breaking down due to mass immigration. A high-ranking official from Tony Blair’s Labour Government in Britain openly confirmed that they promoted mass immigration to import voters and alter the ethnic composition of the country. Similar policies are undoubtedly being promoted in countries from Germany to Australia.

In June 2009, only a few years after a group of Arabs killed thousands of Americans in a Jihadist attack, former US President Bill Clinton told an Arab American audience that soon the USA will no longer have a majority of people with a European heritage. He believed that “this is a very positive thing.” It wasn’t that first time that Mr. Clinton expressed such views.

Jens Orback, Democracy Minister in the then Social Democratic Swedish government, during a radio debate stated that “We must be open and tolerant towards Islam and Muslims because when we become a minority, they will be so towards us.” He took it for granted that the natives will become a minority in their own country and that they have no right to oppose this.

I could add that Sweden has no colonial history. Neither have Finland or Norway, which gained their independence as late as the twentieth century, yet both countries are still force-fed mass immigration of alien peoples. The “colonial guilt” argument used against the natives in Britain, France and other Western European countries is bogus. The real issue is that we white Westerners should not have any countries to call our own. Our countries should be giant Multicultural theme parks for everybody else, financed by brainwashed white taxpayers.

Arguably the leading academic Multiculturalist in my country, Professor Thomas Hylland Eriksen of the University in Oslo, who has received millions in government funding for his projects, in an interview stated frankly that “The most important blank spot exists now in deconstructing the majority so thoroughly that it can never be called the majority again.” This is the ultimate goal of Western Multiculturalists. Make no mistake about it. Needless to say, this agenda is only pushed in white majority Western countries. All other countries are allowed to retain their demographic profile; only the West is required to commit suicide.

Law and order is rapidly breaking down in major cities across Western Europe, and indeed the Western world, as immigrant gangs rule the streets. The law is only upheld against the “racist” white majority population to ensure that they keep on paying ridiculously high taxes to authorities that do nothing but lie to them, insult them and aid their national destruction.

As the eminent English writer El Inglés says, “The nature and severity of the problems we face are now sufficiently clear for European patriots to start asking themselves what actions they and others like them will eventually be called upon to take when the failure of the state reaches a critical point, and what sort of battlefield they will be arrayed upon at that moment.”

Karl MarxOne thing we absolutely need to do is to break the stranglehold that Marxist and Leftist groups have successfully established over the media and the education system in Western countries. These people need to be squashed. Maybe some readers think this sounds too harsh, but I firmly believe that we cannot deal effectively with our external enemies as long as our internal enemies control the information flow. We must reject those who promote a Globalist world, including multinational corporations that desire unlimited access to cheap labor.

Imagine if you have a person jumping off a plane without a parachute because he is convinced that he has “moved beyond gravity.” If works for a little while, until it suddenly doesn’t. That sounds too crazy to be true until you realize that this is what the entire Western world is doing right now when we pretend that we have “moved beyond ethnic divisions.” It is hardwired into the human brain to look after your people and “tribe” first. The only ones who are not currently doing this are whites. If, or rather when, white Westerners start behaving like everybody else our countries will quickly become Balkanized nightmares of competing tribes.

We must switch from a “save the world” to a “save ourselves” mode. In the early twentieth century, people of European origins made up one third of the global population, maybe as much as 40%. In the not-too-distant future this figure will be down to less than 10% and falling. This sharp reduction has not been caused by a plague but by a massive population increase in Third World countries, ironically facilitated by the global technological civilization created by European advances. We have given alien peoples the technological ability to multiply, move to our countries and colonize us. This cannot be allowed to continue.

We must start looking after our own interests just like everybody else. Self-preservation is a natural instinct for all living things down to plants and bacteria. The first thing we must do is to bury the entire notion of “racism,” which is anti-scientific nonsense exclusively designed to intimidate whites. It is perfectly conceivable, indeed highly likely, that there is a major genetic component to culture. This would imply that the preservation of the European cultural heritage can only be accomplished through the preservation of our genetic heritage.

It is becoming more or less mandatory for teachers in many Western countries to disparage European peoples, their culture and their heritage. We don’t need to have special reeducation camps because the media and the education system ensure that our society is virtually one large reeducation camp. Unfortunately, that’s not much of an exaggeration. In Hollywood films such as the disaster movie 2012, which I had the misfortune of seeing, all whites are portrayed either as evil and selfish or as losers whereas the non-white characters are portrayed as selfless and heroic. In reality, whites are today among the most selfless and least ethnocentric groups on the planet, and we are being punished heavily for this trait.

The truth is that whites create superior societies. Not only are others not capable of creating what we do, most of them are not even capable of maintaining it. The one major exception would be Northeast Asians, the only other large group of people on this planet apart from Europeans capable of sustaining a technologically sophisticated society. If anybody replaces us as the world’s leading civilization it will be them, for the simple reason that they are the only ones who possess a genetic intelligence to match ours, and they are not suicidal.

ImmigrantsBecause we create attractive societies other peoples want to move to our countries, but in displacing us they will gradually destroy what made our countries desirable places to live in the first place. They both hate and secretly envy us, and our children suffer needlessly from the violence and verbal abuse caused by this. If whites put up a colony on the planet Mars, I am sure others would hitchhike there on our space ships and demand that we let them in. Once there they would not exhibit any trace of gratitude. On the contrary, they would constantly whine and complain about how evil and racist and oppressive the white man is.

Muslims would demand respect because we owe all our scientific and technological advances to medieval Muslim scholars and because the Martian colony is the 63rd holiest place in Islam. In case you thought the latter sentence was intended as a joke, think again. In 1997 three Arab Muslim gentlemen from the Yemen sued NASA for trespassing on Mars, which they claimed that they owned because they inherited the planet from their ancestors 3,000 years ago.

Novelist Virginia Woolf famously wrote that women need “a room of their own.” In the twenty-first century it is whites who need a room of our own, and if we cannot have that in Europe, which is our cradle, then I don’t see where else we can have it. The alternative is that we maintain a continuing cycle where whites create dynamic societies that are overrun by people incapable of sustaining them. This cycle will finally end when the existence of white communities itself ends. The only viable long-term solution to this dilemma is physical separation. If you force very different peoples to share the same geographic space, conflict is inevitable. This insight was once considered common sense. Now it’s “hate speech.”

Will such a policy not be denounced as “hate” and “Fascism”? Possibly, but I don’t see why we should care about that. We, too, have a right to shape our destiny. Besides, we could always use the arguments of our critics against them. If whites truly are uniquely evil and oppressive, as some people seem to think, is it then not an act of mercy to keep non-whites away from us? That way they don’t have to become exposed to our racism, our hatred and our Islamophobia, but can retain their diverse, authentic and colorful tribal violence undisturbed.

One change that could conceivably take place is that people of European origins develop a stronger identity as “whites” on top of their national identities. I tried to explain to a hostile and now luckily discredited American blogger a while ago that the term “white nationalist” is meaningless in a European context. Maybe it carries some meaning in North America or Australia where most whites are of a mixed heritage, but over here it does not. Englishmen and Germans look fairly similar, but that hasn’t prevented them from slaughtering each other by the millions. Ditto for the French and the Spanish, the Poles and the Russians etc.

I don’t know if there ever will be a “white” identity. Perhaps we are just too different. What I do know is that if such an identity ever comes into being it will to a large extent have been created and forced upon us by our enemies. I have watched a number of disturbing videos, filmed by the attackers, of gangs of blacks or Arabs attacking what appears to be completely random whites. This happens from Sweden via Germany, Britain and France to the United States. This escalating wave of anti-white violence is one of the least-reported major news stories today as Western mainstream media almost uniformly try to cover these things up.

What strikes my about these attacks is that they are based on skin color; nobody asks the victims whether they are Russian Orthodox, Polish Catholics, English atheists, German Lutherans or Dutch Calvinists. These distinctions matter a great deal to us — we have fought many bloody wars because of them — yet they do not seem to matter to those who hate us. If people feel that they are attacked as whites they may start defending themselves as such, too.

The coming pan-Western crash will at the very least lead to an ideological-political paradigm shift and the rise of a new mythology to replace the post-WWII “suicide paradigm” of misunderstood anti-Nazism. At worst, the discontinuity will be so long and severe that what emerges on the other side will be a completely new civilization, the third generation of European civilization, just like what emerged during the Middle Ages was a different civilization from that of Greco-Roman Antiquity. The transition between the first and second generations of European civilization took centuries. History generally moves faster now than it did back then, but I suspect such a transition will nevertheless take several generations.

How a new civilization would look like I do not know. Medieval Europeans used different elements of the Greco-Roman legacy creatively and added new innovations on top of this. Generation Two of European civilization contained within itself aspects of Generation One, but also contained elements of sharp discontinuity. This will probably be the case next time, too.

All of this does admittedly sound a bit gloomy, yet I truthfully remain convinced that we have the necessary cultural and genetic resources to regroup and regenerate at some point, although it is conceivable that whites will in the future come from fewer bloodlines than we do today.


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