A few people have asked me to comment on the recent massacre in Christchurch, New Zealand. There isn’t much to say. Elements of Counter-Jihad merged with the more irreverent parts of the alt-right, gestated in online incubators like 8 Chan, and marched out into the real world. A live-streamed, sound-tracked meme war with real guns and real victims.
Optimists might hope this is the moment all sides draw back, but optimists are rarely right. We’re on the far side of the mountain and the best we can hope for is the occasional plateau. This will be an age of global microwars and hardhearted cheerleaders tougher than anything you’ve ever seen before.
Here’s what I wrote about our possible futures in my book about the counter-jihad movement, Soldiers of a Different God, published in autumn of last year. Maybe it’s relevant.
“Those are the figures. The counter-jihad would urge us to add in crime and cultural change, rapes and burqas, coalition soldiers in dusty villages and Islamic Staters stalking the Bataclan. Liberals prefer to push vibrancy and diversity, fairness and equality, bigots dripping pig blood on mosque doors and refugee doctors saving lives in overextended hospital wards. The left think the West will get stronger when white supremacy is dismantled by an expanded colour palette of skin tones and diversity of places to worship.
Geopolitical types with long memories suggest Eastern Europe will become Byzantium to the West’s Rome, one side of the continent thriving while the former seat of power declines and dies. Cultural commenters warn of a coming new generation in the West so conservative it makes the alt-right look like Saul Alinsky; of third, fourth generation Muslim migrants with no loyalty to ancestral homelands or current nation, but a firm identity in the horizontal reality of international Islam.
Readers of Oswald Spengler believe the migrant crises, enthusiasm for equality, and hierarchies turned upside down are proof the West is on the far side of history’s sine curve and going down fast. Some even think Spengler’s second religiosity, when the inhabitants of a dying civilisation turn back to God, will see its flowering in Islam. European Christianity, they remind us, began as a Jewish desert religion adopted by the pagans in Rome.
‘How 100,000 Britons Have Chosen to Become Muslim,’ ran a Daily Mail headline as far back as 2011, ‘and Average Convert is 27-Year-Old White Woman.’
All commenters seems to agree on one thing: mass migration has made Europe an authoritarian place and will make it more so in the future. The melting pot needs an increasingly thicker, heavier lid to stop it boiling over.
They think impeccably liberal policies of providing havens for refugees, welcoming cheap labour, and opening borders have turned Western nations into Samuel Huntington’s cleft states, full of mutually antagonistic groups. The author of The Clash of Civilizations would undoubtedly see modern France as a new Ukraine, a front line of mutually incompatible worldviews ready to explode. Holding such cleft states together will require a ruthless disregard for human rights, and the destruction of the liberal values that birthed the situation in the first place. If authoritarianism fails, then violent conflict between incompatible ethnic, cultural, and religious interests is inevitable.
A multicultural state is an empire in miniature. And no empire in human history has ever ruled itself through liberalism and tolerance.
We have to weigh all this up and keep our thumbs off the scale in a way the counter-jihad and its enemies can never manage. Decide whether Islam is an existential threat to Western liberal democracy or a slandered religion of peace that just wants to co-exist. Even Houellebecq the mage might find that kind of prediction beyond his powers.”
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