Since February 2009 , this blog and Huib's 3 other Euroblogs are together at:

- In Europa Zu Hause [DE]
- L'Europe Chez Soi [FR]
- At Home in Europe [EN]
- In Europa Thuis [NL]

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Wilders in Rome (2): Crumbling foundations of Euro-supremacist ideology

Edward Gibbon by Henry WaltonMarch 26, 2011, Mr. Wilders continued (see first part) his remarkable horror story in front of a Roman public by referring to Edward Gibbon, a great 18th century British historian, whose "Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire" (1776-1789, 6 vol.) was a first exhaustive study into the fragility of empires.
Inevitably, Wilders (or his ghost writer, for Mr. Wilders did not study at an University) concentrates on a 402 AD (or 401 or 405 AD) event. Some Germanic [and Slavic, HR] peoples crossed the Rhine river and started an invasion into the Roman Gaul lands. Which lead, finally, to plundering of the City of Rome in 406 AD (or 410 AD). Gibbon's source is Jerome in Bethlehem, who was observing from a large distance in space and time what had happened to the Western part of the Roman Empire. The event is not central to Edward Gibbon's theory about the way and causes of the Roman downfall. But Jerome was one of the few written sources he could access. Historiography has much progressed since then. But Mr. Wilders needed a source to underline his anti-islamic world vision and his idée-fixe about Christian supremacy. So he said:
In the 5th century, the Roman Empire fell to the Germanic Barbarians. There is no doubt that the Roman civilization was far superior to that of the Barbarians. And yet, Rome fell. Rome fell because it had suffered a loss of belief in its own civilization. It had lost the will to stand up and fight for survival.
Rome did not fall overnight. Rome fell gradually. The Romans scarcely noticed what was happening. They did not perceive the immigration of the Barbarians as a threat until it was too late. For decades, Germanic Barbarians, attracted by the prosperity of the Empire, had been crossing the border.
At first, the attraction of the Empire on newcomers could be seen as a sign of the cultural, political and economic superiority of Rome. People came to find a better life which their own culture could not provide. But then, on December 31st in the year 406, the Rhine froze and tens of thousands of Germanic Barbarians, crossed the river, flooded the Empire and went on a rampage, destroying every city they passed. In 410, Rome was sacked.
This intrusion from the North was neither the first, nor the last one that happened during the Migration Period. From the third century on, Roman emperors had been hiring German and Slavic tribesmen as  soldiers, allowing them to settle in different parts of the Empire and using them to keep away new peoples coming from the East and the North. During the time we speak of, the East Roman Emperor in Constantinople was engaging Germans to attack his Western Roman rivals. Due, amongst others to climate change (!), the largely Romanized peoples in the transdanubian and transrhenanian area, were driven from the colder regions to warmer climates. A large part of the Vandals ended up in North Africa, where their state subsisted for centuries. The Visigoths (from Sweden) settled in Spain. The Franks in France. 
And, you'll ask, what has Christianism to do with this? For, in Wilders' opinion, Rome was "superior' because of it's "judeo-christian roots". Well, you are in for a big surprise! Those "barbarians" were Christians, too! A quick look by the ghostwriters into the Wiki would have been enough, to make their master less ridiculous. (Wikipedia about Vandals &c):
Around this time, the Hasdingi [one of the two Vandal tribes, HR] had already been Christianized. During the Emperor Valens's reign (364–78) the Vandals accepted, much like the Goths earlier, Arianism, a belief that was in opposition to that of Nicene orthodoxy [Concilium of Nicaea, 323, HR] of the Roman Empire. Yet there were also some scattered orthodox Vandals, among whom was the famous magister militum Stilicho, the chief minister of the [Roman] Emperor Honorius [in Constantinople, HR].
In 400 or 401, possibly because of attacks by the Huns, the Vandals, under kingGodigisel, along with their allies (the Sarmatian Alans and Germanic Suebians) moved westwards into Roman territory. Some of the Silingi [the other Vandal tribe, HR] joined them later. Vandals raided the Roman province of Raetia in the winter of 401/402.
Oh, my God! Those "barbarians" crossing the Rhine, they were ... Arian Christians! It was a match between Christians, not between believers and non-believers! Like it happens always in war, barbaric acts were perpetrated on both sides. Fellow (orthodox) Christians manipulated Arian Christians to attack Roman Christians. And, believe me, Jews and humanistic polytheists, they were discriminated against and chased away by all three of the Christian sects! 
If you read Edward Gibbon, even superficially, you'll find, that he attributes the decline and fall of the Roman Empire to imperial militarist authoritarianism, in particular the use of hired soldiers in the Praetorian Guard, who acted like sectarian militias in the way of the "stadscommandos" (the city vigilantes) the PVV is proposing now for more "security" in the Dutch cities. Rome's decline and fall came from within, if you follow Edward Gibbon's reasoning. 
From within Christianity, not from the outside.
When Wilders needs a dramatic point, he always comes up with Winston Churchill. Florida synagogue audiences hailed him as the "new Churchill" who will save Europe from Barbary. So, it is time for old Winston, to make his appearance in Wilders' apocalyptic speech:
The fall of Rome was a traumatic experience. Numerous books have been written about the cataclysmal event and Europeans were warned not to make the same mistake again. In 1899, in his book ‘The River War,’ Winston Churchill warned that Islam is threatening Europe in the same way as the Barbarians once threatened Rome. “Mohammedanism,” Churchill wrote – I quote – “is a militant and proselytizing faith. No stronger retrograde force exists in the World. […] The civilization of modern Europe might fall, as fell the civilization of ancient Rome.” End of quote.
Winston Churchill was in 1899 writing as a young reporter about the Fashoda Incident in Sudan, stressing the need for Great Britain to secure a North-South corridor in Africa and exaggerating the "danger" of the Sudanese Mahdi movement, in order to get an excuse to occupy those regions before the French would do so. "Mohammedanism" was certainly not Winston Churchill's main concern. Which was proven only one year later, when he participated in the British genocide (the first concentration camps!) against the very Christian South African Boers, in spite of their firm Dutch roots. And it was under Churchill's reign, later on, that Muslim Palestinians and Jordanians were encouraged to fight Jewish immigration into Palestine. Mr. Wilders certainly has a gift. The gift of choosing examples that illustrate the opposite of what he wanted to prove.
Mr. Wilders is not interested in facts that contradict his Manichean beliefs. Christians are always good, or 'superior' at least. Outsiders, in particular Muslims, are always bad, or 'inferior, backward'. A more realistic view on mankind is condemned as "Multiculturalism", in spite of the fact that there are no other civilizations than multicultural ones.
... if Europe falls, it will fall because, like ancient Rome, it no longer believes in the superiority of its own civilization. It will fall because it foolishly believes that all cultures are equal and that, consequently, there is no reason why we should fight for our own culture in order to preserve it.
This failure to defend our own culture has turned immigration into the most dangerous threat that can be used against the West. Multiculturalism has made us so tolerant that we tolerate the intolerant.
These are the rantings of a man, possessed by Angst. If Wilders had an idea of the wealth, the riches and the strength of Western civilization and it's multi-layered cultural content, he would not be afraid of a possible "fall" of our civilization. But he is an uncultured demagogue, who, as a politician, should look out for solutions to the frictions caused by ever increasing globalism.
But, like so many christian, jewish, muslim, buddhist, communist and fascist authoritarians before him, he creates horrible myths about the stranger, whose only concern, he says, is destruction of our society.
In the third part of this series, we'll have a more close look into Wilders' remedies against multiculturalists with "weak knees" and the supposed worldwide Islamic conjuration they would be sponsoring.
The first part was also published in At Home in Europe.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Geert Wilders in Rome (1): White Supremacism, wild mythology

March 25 (26), Mr. Geert Wilders, Dutch MP and leader of an authoritarian movement (no membership, one leader), called the 'Freedom Party' (PVV), spoke at a meeting in Rome, Italy.
In addition to what Mr. Wilders will have to say himself about his actual position and perspectives in Holland and elsewhere, we'd like to mention, that his hosts (the Italian Magna Carta Foundation) are closely linked to media tycoon and  much criticized populist head of Government Silvio Berlusconi as well as to the American Enterprise Institute (AEI). The AEI, as is well known, are under neo-conservative influence.
But, actually, neither the AEI, nor the main neocon publication (The Weekly Standard, Washington DC) seem to be much in favor of a crusade against Islam as such. The US Neoconservatives consider religion, Christian or not, as an efficient disciplining tool for the masses. That is, why AEI and WS scarcely mention the Dutch peroxyd blond verbal crusader against Islam. They prefer a more subtle approach.
Wilders is trying to establish an international federation of anti-Islam movements. He has already a name for it: 'Geert Wilders International Freedom Association' (GWIFA). GWIFA should be established in the US. But, alas for him, large egos like Robert Spencer, Pamela Geller and Daniel Pipes, are not in a mood to leave the stage and put up a wooden shoe loon as their mascot.

Wilders' GWIFA effort limits itself, up to now, to an association with a remarkably un-sexy ex-christian democrat from Berlin, Mr. Stadtkewitz. Other potential allies, like the Flemish VB and the Austrian FPÖ are, for the moment, under Geert's ban because of their too close association with an anti-semitic past.
Wilders' invitation by the Italian foundation can only be explained by the presence, as it's international secretary, of Anita Friedman. Friedman is head of an association "We'll Meet in Jerusalem" and she comes from an active Zionist American family.
I do not know yet, if Wilders' speech (see below) had any impact in Rome or in Italy. But, whatever it did, or didn't, it helps us to study the actual level of folly, idiocy and despicable hate-mongering that Mr. Wilders and his American-Israeli funders try to make us believe at this point of time.

The Failure of Multiculturalism and How to Turn the Tide
Signore e signori, ladies and gentlemen, dear friends of the Magna Carta Foundation, molte grazie. Thank you for inviting me to Rome. It is great to be here in this beautiful city which for many centuries was the capital and the centre of Europe’s Judeo-Christian culture.
Wilders speaks of a "Judean-Christian culture", leaving out the "humanistic", "rationalistic" or "laic" component he always features. That is remarkable. The city of Rome was for a long time opposed to the introduction by 4th century emperors like Constantine of Christianity as a state-religion. It sticked to its centuries-old tradition of polytheïstic and rational philosophy. Even now, a self-conscious Roman upper class loathes the Vatican and it's pretensions.
1st-4rd Century Jews were confined to a poor ghetto that existed already under Nero (Year 20-40). Christians were considered a Jewish sect. Persecuted by all emperors up to Diocletian (300) as well as the Jews proper. Until deep into the 6th century, the Bishop of Rome struggled to be recognized as head of the Western Roman Catholic Church. The Byzantine colleague had much more power.
Rome, on the brink of the Middle Ages, was neither Jewish, nor a Christian centre.
Together with Jerusalem and Athens, Rome is the cradle of our Western civilization – the most advanced and superior civilization the world has ever known.
Nothing against mentioning of Athens an Jerusalem. But Wilders' classification of the civilization (culture?) of Rome as "the most advanced and superior civilization the world has ever known.", when speaking of early medieval Rome that is, at best, an exaggeration. Jews were mostly exiled to the upper Rhine valley. Theological thinking and renovation came from North Africa (Augustinus), from Egypt, Syria and Babylon, not to speak of Constantinople. And the Islamic renovation had yet to start
As Westerners, we share the same Judeo-Christian culture. I am from the Netherlands and you are from Italy. Our national cultures are branches of the same tree. We do not belong to multiple cultures, but to different branches of one single culture. This is why when we come to Rome, we all come home in a sense. We belong here, as we also belong in Athens and in Jerusalem. And the Islamic renovation had yet to start.
It is important that we know where our roots are. If we lose them we become deracinated. We become men and women without a culture.
So, now we know where "our" roots are. In a small, uncultured and ailing city in Italy. Goats were herded between the ruins of the Roman Forum. Roman bishops were people who could not write or read. There are stories, that one Roman bishop even was a ... woman! It is a favor of History, that Babylonian and Spanish Jews and Muslims rediscovered Greek Philosophy, translated Plato and Aristoteles into Arabic, so that (much) later on, those texts could be read in Latin, as the Renaissance imposed itself upon stubborn stupidity and superstition.
I am here today to talk about multiculturalism. This term has a number of different meanings. I use the term to refer to a specific political ideology. It advocates that all cultures are equal. If they are equal it follows that the state is not allowed to promote any specific cultural values as central and dominant. In other words: multiculturalism holds that the state should not promote a leitkultur, which immigrants have to accept if they want to live in our midst.
We are only at the 4th paragraph of Mr. Geert Wilders' Philippica, and many are to follow. But he gives us already the root of all of his reasoning: The existence of a so-called "leitkultur". And, as if that were not enough, Mr. Wilders assumes, that "the State" has to maintain that "Kultur". Not the Church, not the Philosophers, nor Sociologists or Psychiatrists, no, the State.
Of course, he does not speak of common people. Of voters and members of social organizations. No, no, for Mr. Wilders, it is the "State" that is reponsible for maintaining something that he defines als "Leitkultur".
Traditional Liberals, or Conservatives like Burke, are full out against any state-intervention into the beliefs and thoughts of citizens. Wilders sides with authoritarians like Bismarck ("Kulturkampf" against Catholics and Social Democrats) and even less palatable ideologies of the 20th century.

Intermediate conclusion: Mr. Wilders invents a "judeo-christian" myth, connected to the city of Rome. It's "culture" is "superior", right from the start, to all other "cultures" in the world. Not the Church or the Philosopher, but the "State" must impose that culture on it's citizens, old and new. It has to reject everything new that comes from outside it's cultural sphere. 

This may seem already outlandish and retrograde. But madness has no limits. You'll have to get used to more and worse. Accompany us into the fairy world of a paranoiac! You'll have to see why wrong roots produce inevitably the wrong people. (Geert Wilders in Rome (2)).

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