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jeudi, 02 mai 2013

Deutschlands unbekannte Jahrhunderte

deut36801865z.jpg

Reinhard Schmoeckel

 

Deutschlands unbekannte Jahrhunderte

 

Geheimnisse aus dem Frühmittelalter

 

524 Seiten, 11 Karten im Text, geb., fester Einband

ISBN 978-3-938176-41-2

Preis: 29,80 Euro

Erscheinungstermin: Mai 2013

Was war in unserem Land - Deutschland - vor etwa 1500 Jahren los ? Das war die Zeit zwischen dem Ende des Römischen Kaiserreichs und den Kaisern eines „heiligen römischen Reichs", die nun plötzlich aus Mitteleuropa stammten ? Gab es da bei uns überhaupt „Geschichte" ? Gab es Ereignisse, die vielleicht bestimmend für die weitere Entwicklung der Menschen und des Landes waren ? Und ob.

Allerdings glauben die Historiker, davon kaum etwas zu wissen, denn niemand hat ja damals in unserem Land schreiben können. Aber Indizien aus den archäologischen Funden, aus der Heraldik, der Namens- und Sprachforschung, aus der Sagenforschung und zahlreichen anderen Wissenschaften ergeben Mosaiksteinchen für ein riesiges Puzzle. Man muss nur bereit sein, sie als zusammengehörig zu erkennen und verständlich zu beschreiben, dann kann man viele Bild-Bruchstücke sichtbar machen, die das Frühmittelalter, „Deutschlands unbekannte Jahrhunderte", gar nicht mehr so dunkel, so unbekannt erscheinen lassen.

Dr. Reinhard Schmoeckel ist es gelungen, aus einer großen Fülle von Detailuntersuchungen vieler Privatforscher, darunter auch seiner eigenen, ein überraschend lebendiges Bild jener Zeit vor anderthalb Jahrtausenden zusammenzustellen, ein Bild, das bisher noch keinen Eingang in die bisher übliche Vorstellungswelt der Geschichtswissenschaft gefunden hat. Dabei lassen sich alle Einzelheiten präzise belegen.

Das Buch zeigt, wie Menschen mehrerer Völker - keineswegs nur Germanen ! - nach Mitteleuropa kamen, zu verschiedenen Zeiten und aus unterschiedlichen Richtungen. Ganz allmählich wuchs der Einfluss des westlichen Nachbarn, des inzwischen entstandenen Königreichs der Franken, und des Christentums. Doch wie fragil war damals noch diese Herrschaft, bevor die Frankenkönige aus dem Haus der Karolinger die Macht in einem Land bekamen, das erst viel später „Deutschland" heißen sollte.

Als populärwissenschaftlicher Schriftsteller mit großer Erfahrung in der Frühgeschichte Europas bringt es der Autor fertig, dem Leser die allmählichen Veränderungen plastisch vor Augen zu stellen, die in jener Zeit mit den Menschen vor sich gingen.

Reinhard Schmoeckel, geb. 1928 in Berlin, journalistische Ausbildung, Dr. jur., langjährige Tätigkeit im Bundespresseamt, Bundskanzleramt, Bundespräsidialamt in Bonn. Autor mehrerer erfolgreicher populärwissenschaftlicher Bücher über deutsche und europäische Vor-und Frühgeschichte und historische Romane, darunter das Buch „Die Indoeuropäer" (Neuauflage 2012 im Lindenbaum Verlag).

Vielen Dank!

Mit freundlichen Grüßen

Siegfried Bublies

Lindenbaum Verlag GmbH, Bergstr. 11, 56290 Beltheim-Schnellbach, Tel. 06746 / 730047, Fax 06746 / 730048

E-Brief: lindenbaum-verlag@web.de

Internet: www.lindenbaum-verlag.de

 

Inhaltsverzeichnis des Buches "Deutschlands unbekannte Jahrhunderte" von Dr. Reinhard Schmoeckel:

 

Vorwort          

Teil I: Hunnen am Horizont  (407 – 454 n. Chr.)

1   Die Nachhut der Völkerwanderung

     „Ein schöner Platz für unser Vieh” (April 407 n. Chr., beim heutigen Mainz-Kastell) – Wer waren die Sarmaten ?Pferdegräber: Indizien für die Einwanderung von Sarmaten

2   Die Burgunder und der Kaiser

     „Vivat Imperator Jovinus !” (Mitte August 411, Mündt, Gem. Titz, Kreis Düren) – Die Burgunder lebten doch in Worms !?

3   Der lange Weg der sarmatischen Reiter von der Donau zur Schelde....

     „Auf Befehl des Kaisers…” (Frühjahr 414 in Castra Vetera / Xanten am Rhein)  – Unbekanntes über die Vorfahren der Merowinger-Könige – Sicambrer und  Sigambrer, ein bemerkenswertes historisches  Zusammentreffen

4   Die Wanderungen der Alt-Sachsen

     Abschied von der uralten Heimat  (Frühjahr 430 an der Wesermündung bei Bremerhaven) – Ein Land verliert seine Menschen – Keine “drei Schiffe”, kein „Hengist und Horsa”

5   Das Ende des „ersten Reichs” der Burgunder

     Des Königs Gundahari und seiner Nibelungen tapferer Tod (Spätherbst 436, in König Attilas Lager in Ungarn) –Geschichtsforschung widerlegt und bestätigt das  Nibelungenlied – Burgunder, ein Volk, das wanderte

6   Kölns Weg aus dem Römerreich in eine neue Zeit

     Ein Heil zu wenig ? (Sommer 442 in Köln)  –  Plausible Indizien gegen „Überzeugungen”

7   Der Anfang vom Ende Attilas

     Hunnen am Rhein (Spätherbst 451 bei Unkel/Rhein) – Wenn  es  keine Heimatforscher gäbe … – Was wollte 

Attila in Gallien ?

Teil II  Zuwanderer in ein menschenarmes Land  (455 – ca. 490 n. Chr.)

8   Mit Mensch und Vieh ins Hunenland

     Auf der Flucht vor den Kriegen der Anderen  (Sommer 455 in Ungarn) – „Man muss sich gegen die Schachmänner wehren !” (Sommer 456 an der oberen Lippe in Westfalen) – Von „Schachmännern” und „Schächern”  – Mustangs  in  Westfalen – Ein Mithras-Heiligtum an den Externsteinen

9   Das römische Köln noch einmal gerettet

     Die Colonia in Bedrängnis (Herbst 460 in Köln) – Fiktive und realistische Geschichtsdarstellung  Plausible Gründe gegen eine „Herrschaft” von Germanen am Rhein – „Bayern” in Köln ?

10 Sarmatische Könige in Thüringen ?

     Die Männer in den blauen Umhängen (Sommer 465 im heutigen Erfurt) – Warum Archäologen nie etwas von den Sarmaten finden konnten – Erstaunliches über die Verbindung von Thüringen zu den Merowingern – Wie aus Mänteln Feldzeichen und aus diesen Wappen wurden

11 Aus Turkerern und Sueben werden Schwaben

     Der Ritt ins Anderland für einen Edlen  (Herbst 480 bei Donzdorf, Baden-Württemberg)   Die unglaubliche und dennoch wahre Geschichte der Turkerer im Schwabenland – Vom toten Babai zum Kaiser Barbarossa ? – Waren die  Sarmaten bereits Christen ?

12 Einwanderung von der Maas an den Rhein

     Der Mutige kann König werden (Sommer 495,  im Maifeld, Rheinland-Pfalz – Die Samson-Geschichte in derThidrekssaga Rätselhafte „Völker” in der “Svava

13 Schachmänner und Hunen in Westfalen

     Das Kastell an der Lippe (Sommer 500 an der Lippe nördlich von Dortmund ) – Indizien aus Sage und Geographie

Teil III  Das Reich der Franken greift über den Rhein (ca. 500 – 560 n. Chr.)

14 König Chlodwig und die Alemannen

     In der neuen Patria Francorum (Spätherbst 506 in Worms/ Rhein)  - Nur aus Indizien zu schließen

15 Endlich König in Köln

     Chlodwig am Ziel seiner Wünsche (Weihnachten  509, Paris) – Das Zeugnis des Bischofs  Gregor von Tours –Chlodwigs umfassendes Konzept

16 Die letzten Römer werden Franken

     „Im Auftrag des Königs der Franken…” (Sommer 515, in Krefeld-Gellep) – Das größte römische Gräberfeldnördlich der Alpen  – Woher will man wissen, dass der Tote eine Sarmate war ?

17 Völkerwanderungen an der Ostsee

     König Granmars trauriges Ende und die Auswanderung der Dänen (Spätsommer 520, an der Warnow in Mecklenburg) –  Ein Geschichtsbild aus Mosaiksteinchen rekonstruiert

18 Ganz unmerklich wächst der Einfluss

     Eine Heirat zwischen Freunden (Sommer 525 in Alt-Paffrath b.Bergisch Gladbach) – Kleine Anfänge der  „Herren von  Berg” – „Tu, felix Francia, nube…”

19 Die Frankenkönige erobern das Thüringerreich ihrer Vettern

     Ein Aufstand kurz vor dem Ausbruch gescheitert (Sommer 534, Großörner bei Eisleben, Sachsen-Anhalt) – Versuch eines  Blicks auf die Politik hinter den Ereignissen

20 Eine Klimakatastrophe und ihre Folgen für das Frankenreich

     Das Heer, das die Sonne suchte (Sommer 536, in Metz, Frankreich, später in Soest/Westfalen) – Als die Sonneerlosch – Der tiefe Eindruck auf die Menschen und ein erster „Kreuzzug” nach Westfalen – Die Ausdehnung des Frankenreichs ins südliche Deutschland

21 Ein Volk auf Wanderschaft

     Neuer Aufbruch für die Langobarden (Spätsommer 548  in Mähren/Tschechien) – Die Nachzügler der Völkerwanderung

Teil IV   Mitteleuropa im Kräftefeld zweier Mächte (562 – 640 n. Chr.)

22 Abwehr an der Elbe

     Ein denkwürdiger Sieg (Sommer 562, an der Elbe bei Dessau) – Informationen über die Awaren – Die Bürger-kriege der Frankenkönige

23 Die Völkerwanderung der Slawen

     Die Sorben am Ziel (Spätherbst 564, beim heutigen Bautzen / Lausitz) – Theorien zur Entstehung slawischerund baltischer Völker im Frühmittelalter –  Die weiteren Schicksale der Sorben  – Andere slawische Einwander ins spätere Deutschland

24 Der Fürst von Beckum

     Ein Grab in der Heimat (Spätherbst 575, in Beckum/ Westfalen) – Der „Fürst von Beckum” war kein Sachse –Das rot-weiße Schachwappen der Grafen von der Mark

25 Der abenteuerliche „Sachsen”-Zug in die Fremde und  wieder in die Heimat

     Die Erinnerungen der edlen Frau Baldegunde (Spätherbst 590 in Dortmund-Asseln) – Ein archäologischer Beleg fürdie Erzählung Gregors von Tours  – Ein Drama an der Bode

26 Die Friesen müssen neue Wohnsitze suchen

     Flucht vor dem „blanken Hans” (Sommer 600 in Butjadingen westlich der Wesermündung) Ein Stamm im  frühen und heutigen Deutschland: die Friesen

27     Das Urteil von Köln

     „Das war eines Königs unwürdig !” (Jahreswende 612, in Soest/Westf.) – Die Grausamkeiten innerhalb der 

Merowinger-Dynastie und deren Folgen im „Land jenseits des Rheins”   

28 In ein freies Land

     Die Burg der Papen (Frühsommer 630 in Papenburg/ Ems) – Die Ausbreitung von Sarmaten in Niedersachsen –Papen: die ersten christlichen „Missionare” in Deutschland – Wie kamen Pferdegräber in die Niederlande und nach Belgien?

29 Franken und Slawen – Der schlechte Beginn einer schwierigen Nachbarschaft

     König Dagoberts schmähliche Flucht (Frühjahr 631, bei Lauterbach/Hessen) – Die historische Lage im Frankenreich und in Osteuropa um das Jahr 630 – Slawen lebten einst bis zum Vogelsberg in Hessen

30 Ein Massenmord im Mittelalter

     Die Nacht des Tötens (Sylvester 631 bei Linz/Donau) – Staatsräson gegen ein uraltes Sittengesetz – Der Bulgarenmord als Vorbild für das Nibelungenlied 

31 Herrschaftswechsel

     Die neuen Knechte des Bischofs (Herbst 639 in Soest/Westf.) – Vermutungen zu einem „schwarzen Loch des Nichtwissens”

Teil V  Ein neuer Glaube breitet sich aus  –  aber nicht überall  (650 – 755 n. Chr.)

 

32 Ein neues Volk wächst zusammen

     Burgenbau mit doppeltem Zweck (Frühsommer 645,  an der Mecklenburg bei Schwerin) – Die Ursprünge der  slawischen Obotriten

33 Christliche Sendboten bei den Alemannen

     Das wundersame Begräbnis des Mönchs Fridolin (März 660 in Säckingen / Hochrhein) –Der heilige Fridolin: Legende und Realität – Die zarten Anfänge christlicher Mission – Wer herrschte über die Alemannen ? –  Spekulationen über den Weg der Habsburger in die Schweiz

34 Der Ursprung des Kölner Karnevals

     Das Fest der Handwerker (21. März 670 in Köln) – Karnevalsbräuche aus Mittelasien ?

35 Die Zeit der Frisia Magna

     König Radbods Goldgruben am Rhein (Sommer 681, in Utrecht/ Niederlande) – Ein Blick in die Geschichte derFriesen – Vorgeschichtlicher Handel an Meeren und Flüssen

36 In den „Landen um den Main”

     Drei Glaubensboten spurlos verschwunden (Winter 691, in Würzburg/Main) – Die iro-schottischen Missionare – Warum Franken Franken heißt  

37 Der Aufstieg eines starken Mannes

     Kraft aus geheimnisvollen Quellen (Oktober 715 in Echternach/Luxemburg) – Von Pippin II. zu Karl Martell – Ein heiliger Bezirk seit tausenden von Jahren – Der vergebliche Versuch einer merowingischen Restauration

38 Bonifatius und seine Kollegen

     „Die Kirche braucht den Schutz der Krieger !” (Herbst 723 in Mainz) – Ein neuer Ansatz zur Heidenmission –Bonifatius, der „Apostel der Deutschen”

39 Aus der Jugend Widukinds

     Letzte Ehre für einen Edlen (Herbst 755 in Drantum, Krs. Cloppenburg) – Ist das Dunkel um das Leben  Widukinds wirklich so dicht ? Von den West-Falen zu den „Sachsen”

Nachwort       

Literatur         

Register:

Völker, Stämme, Herrschergeschlechter

Karten

mardi, 30 avril 2013

The Forgotten “White” Slaves

The Irish Slave Trade

The Forgotten “White” Slaves

The Slaves That Time Forgot

 

White-Cargo-9780814742969.jpgThey came as slaves; vast human cargo transported on tall British ships bound for the Americas. They were shipped by the hundreds of thousands and included men, women, and even the youngest of children.

Whenever they rebelled or even disobeyed an order, they were punished in the harshest ways. Slave owners would hang their human property by their hands and set their hands or feet on fire as one form of punishment. They were burned alive and had their heads placed on pikes in the marketplace as a warning to other captives.

We don’t really need to go through all of the gory details, do we? We know all too well the atrocities of the African slave trade.

But, are we talking about African slavery? King James II and Charles I also led a continued effort to enslave the Irish. Britain’s famed Oliver Cromwell furthered this practice of dehumanizing one’s next door neighbor.

The Irish slave trade began when James II sold 30,000 Irish prisoners as slaves to the New World. His Proclamation of 1625 required Irish political prisoners be sent overseas and sold to English settlers in the West Indies. By the mid 1600s, the Irish were the main slaves sold to Antigua and Montserrat. At that time, 70% of the total population of Montserrat were Irish slaves.

Ireland quickly became the biggest source of human livestock for English merchants. The majority of the early slaves to the New World were actually white.

From 1641 to 1652, over 500,000 Irish were killed by the English and another 300,000 were sold as slaves. Ireland’s population fell from about 1,500,000 to 600,000 in one single decade. Families were ripped apart as the British did not allow Irish dads to take their wives and children with them across the Atlantic. This led to a helpless population of homeless women and children. Britain’s solution was to auction them off as well.

During the 1650s, over 100,000 Irish children between the ages of 10 and 14 were taken from their parents and sold as slaves in the West Indies, Virginia and New England. In this decade, 52,000 Irish (mostly women and children) were sold to Barbados and Virginia. Another 30,000 Irish men and women were also transported and sold to the highest bidder. In 1656, Cromwell ordered that 2000 Irish children be taken to Jamaica and sold as slaves to English settlers.

Many people today will avoid calling the Irish slaves what they truly were: Slaves. They’ll come up with terms like “Indentured Servants” to describe what occurred to the Irish. However, in most cases from the 17th and 18th centuries, Irish slaves were nothing more than human cattle.

As an example, the African slave trade was just beginning during this same period. It is well recorded that African slaves, not tainted with the stain of the hated Catholic theology and more expensive to purchase, were often treated far better than their Irish counterparts.

African slaves were very expensive during the late 1600s (50 Sterling). Irish slaves came cheap (no more than 5 Sterling). If a planter whipped or branded or beat an Irish slave to death, it was never a crime. A death was a monetary setback, but far cheaper than killing a more expensive African. The English masters quickly began breeding the Irish women for both their own personal pleasure and for greater profit. Children of slaves were themselves slaves, which increased the size of the master’s free workforce. Even if an Irish woman somehow obtained her freedom, her kids would remain slaves of her master. Thus, Irish moms, even with this new found emancipation, would seldom abandon their kids and would remain in servitude.

In time, the English thought of a better way to use these women (in many cases, girls as young as 12) to increase their market share: The settlers began to breed Irish women and girls with African men to produce slaves with a distinct complexion. These new “mulatto” slaves brought a higher price than Irish livestock and, likewise, enabled the settlers to save money rather than purchase new African slaves. This practice of interbreeding Irish females with African men went on for several decades and was so widespread that, in 1681, legislation was passed “forbidding the practice of mating Irish slave women to African slave men for the purpose of producing slaves for sale.” In short, it was stopped only because it interfered with the profits of a large slave transport company.

England continued to ship tens of thousands of Irish slaves for more than a century. Records state that, after the 1798 Irish Rebellion, thousands of Irish slaves were sold to both America and Australia. There were horrible abuses of both African and Irish captives. One British ship even dumped 1,302 slaves into the Atlantic Ocean so that the crew would have plenty of food to eat.

There is little question that the Irish experienced the horrors of slavery as much (if not more in the 17th Century) as the Africans did. There is, also, very little question that those brown, tanned faces you witness in your travels to the West Indies are very likely a combination of African and Irish ancestry. In 1839, Britain finally decided on it’s own to end it’s participation in Satan’s highway to hell and stopped transporting slaves. While their decision did not stop pirates from doing what they desired, the new law slowly concluded THIS chapter of nightmarish Irish misery.

But, if anyone, black or white, believes that slavery was only an African experience, then they’ve got it completely wrong.

Irish slavery is a subject worth remembering, not erasing from our memories.

But, where are our public (and PRIVATE) schools???? Where are the history books? Why is it so seldom discussed?

Do the memories of hundreds of thousands of Irish victims merit more than a mention from an unknown writer?

Or is their story to be one that their English pirates intended: To (unlike the African book) have the Irish story utterly and completely disappear as if it never happened.

None of the Irish victims ever made it back to their homeland to describe their ordeal. These are the lost slaves; the ones that time and biased history books conveniently forgot.

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A quand la repentance pour les esclaves blancs de la traite transatlantique ?

A quand la repentance pour les esclaves blancs de la traite transatlantique ?

par Jim Reeves

Ex: http://linformationnationaliste.hautetfort.com/

« ... Et se rappeler que la moitié, peut-être les 2/3, des colons américains originels ne sont pas arrivés ici librement mais kidnappés, drogués, abusés, et, oui, enchaînés » (Elaine Kendall).

DANS son éditorial du 16 mai, Camille Galic illustrait de l'aphorisme fameux de Napoléon, « Une tête sans mémoire est une place sans garnison », l'odieuse repentance qu'on nous matraque sur la traite négrière. « C'est, 'concluait-elle, évidemment pour désarmer la garnison que notre mémoire est subvertie, dévoyée, persécutée et finalement prohibée au profit de mémoires non seulement étrangères mais aussi falsifiées, voire fabriquées ». Pendant deux cents ans, sur la même aire géographique atlantique, ce crime-là, pas plus qu'il ne fut le plus détestable, ne disposa de quelque antériorité.

Aussi est-il crapuleux de la part du président de la République française de vouloir imposer son étude aux écoliers. Honorant ainsi exclusivement ce qui n'est qu'une partie de l'esclavage transatlantique. Déjà, on ne cesse de présenter les VIkings comme les grands prédateurs esclavagistes du VIe au XIe siècle quand trafiquants vénitiens, génois, grecs, arabes, juifs, tatars, mongols, turcs mirent pendant mille ans nos ancêtres blancs en coupe réglée. Jusqu'à l'AI Andalous islamisé, Eden mythique de la société multiraciale, d'où par milliers femmes et enfants razziés d'Espagne et du Portugal partaient pour le Maghreb et au-delà comme l'a rappelé Le Choc du Mois (de juin) portant en titre « Stop à la repentance - La vérité sur l'esclavage ».


LES IRLANDAIS ET LES ALLEMANDS AUSSI


Mais il est un autre servage dont nul ne parle. Disparu théoriquement d'Angleterre au début du 17e siècle, l'esclavage resurgit lors de la conquête de l'Irlande par Cromwell entre 1649 et 1653. On estime à 100 000 le nombre des Irlandais, hommes, femmes et enfants envoyés comme esclaves dans les colonies d'Amérique du Nord. Linebaugh et Rediker, dans Marins, esclaves, prolétaires, Histoire cachée de la révolution atlantique, les évaluent en 1660 à 12 000 aux Antilles et à 8 000 en 1669 à la Barbade, où un rapport de 1667 décrit ces Irlandais comme « des miséreux méprisés par les Noirs et traités en esclaves blancs ». En 1640, sur 25000 esclaves, 21 000 étaient blancs et 8 sur 10 ne passaient pas la première année. En 1670, l'Assemblée de Virginie, suivie par les autres colonies, vota une loi interdisant aux Noirs et aux Indiens de posséder un esclave blanc ("christian"). Au XVIIIe siècle encore, on en trouve en grand nombre dans les plantations du Maryland. En 1717, pour être élu à l'assemblée de Caroline du Sud, il fallait «posséder un homme blanc ».


De cette époque date le terme de redlegs qui désignait aux Caraibes les esclaves irlandais, anglais, écossais, allemands, danois, qui, pour la plupart, moururent brisés physiquement, détruits psychologiquement. Il en existe encore des traces bouleversantes. A Belize et à la Jamaïque, on les appelle des bakras. A Bequia (Grenadines), à la Grenade et dans le district de Dorsetshire Hill à St Vincent, mais également dans quelques Etats américains où ils émigrèrent au fil du temps, ils ont su conserver, incroyablement, leur identité ethnique.
Aux Antilles françaises où le phénomène est demeuré tabou, parfois file un brin de vérité. Ainsi dans Le Marronnage aux Antilles françaises au XVIIIe siècle, l' historien de l'esclavage Gabriel Debien écrit-il : « Le "marronnage" existait autant chez les servants blancs asservis par contrat que chez les esclaves noirs. » De sorte que si un marronnage blanc coexista avec le noir c'est parce que, dans la Caraibe française, il y avait aussi des esclaves blancs.


"PAUVRES EN SURPLUS", OCCULTÉS PARCE QUE BLANCS


Officiellement, celte main-d' œuvre blanche - qui colonisa également l'Australie à partir de 1776 - est dite indentured servants ou « domestiques sous contrat ». Venus du Royaume-Uni, d'Irlande, d'Allemagne, ils payaient, prétend-on, leur passage d'un contrat de servage de quatre à sept ans. « Qu'ils soient "serviteurs" ou esclaves, souligne Richard Hostadter dans White Servitude, ils souffrirent la même cruelle et déracinante traversée de l'Atlantique. Furent confrontés à la même difficile acclimatation physique et psychologique. Furent contraints au même contact oppressif et intime avec un maître inconnu. Et si l'on prend en compte le nombre des fuites et des suicides, les conditions dans ['un et l'autre cas ne furent sans doute pas très différentes ».

Mais outre le fait que, après le Waltham Act de 1723, l'Angleterre déporta en Amérique par dizaines de milliers ses voleurs de pain, l'historien américain Michaël Hoffman démontra - dans They were Whites and they were Slaves - que les « indentured servants» ne représentèrent qu'une petite partie de la servitude blanche et que 50 % des Européens échoués dans les treize premières colonies, après 1609, y furent plus maltraités que les Noirs.
Les sources historiques ne manquent pas qui montrent la permanence de l'esclavage dans le Royaume-Uni. Le terme "kid-napper", déformation de "kid-nabber", voleur d'enfants, est ainsi défini par le Dictionnaire Anglais des Bas-Fonds: « Voleur d'êtres humains, spécialement d'enfants; à l'origine destinés à être exportés vers les plantations d'Amérique du Nord. ». Dans toutes les grandes villes britanniques, écrit dans Enchaînés le journaliste John van der Zee, « des gangs loués par les marchands écumaient les rues, saisissant de force les enfants et les emmenant en troupeaux à travers la ville vers les baraques du port ».

Au XVI' et au XVII' siècles, la traversée de l'océan prenait entre neuf et douze semaines sur des bateaux surchargés. Le taux de mortalité, de 10 à 20 % chez les Noirs, rapporte l'historienne Sharon Salinger, atteignait au moins 25 % chez les esclaves blancs. Selon Foster R. Dulles, « ils enduraient le même inconfort et les mêmes souffrances que les Noirs » et « les enfants survivaient rarement aux horreurs du voyage ». Horrifié, l'historien A.B. Ellis, rapportait dans The Argosy que cette « cargaison humaine n'avait jamais accès à l'air libre. Dans les cales d'en bas tout n'était qu'obscurité, lamentations, puanteur, maladie et mort », comme l'apprit à ses dépens Françoise d'Aubigné, la future Mme de Maintenon, dont le père perclus de dettes avait été déporté vers les Isles et dont l'épouse et la fille connurent après sa mort un quasi-servage. Le 6 mai 1893, Ellis ajoutait : «Peu de gens savent qu'entre 1649 et 1690, un florissant commerce de prisonniers politiques vendus comme esclaves, parfois à vie, existait entre l'Angleterre et ses colonies. ». Dans le Calendrier des Papiers Coloniaux, année 1701, est mentionnée la vente d'esclaves "anglais". Une «pratique très fréquente » qui apparaît dans la Caraïbe britannique dès 1627. Dans son Agenda Parlementaire, 1656-1659, Thomas Burton, évoque un débat sur le commerce vers le Nouveau Monde de Blancs britanniques qualifiés non d' indentured servants mais d'esclaves. Marcus Jernegan cite un nommé Mittelberg qui affirme avoir vu au cours d'une traversée jeter par-dessus bord 32 dépouilles d'enfants. Dans White Servitude ln Colonial South Carolina, Warren Smith confirme que « les serviteurs blancs voyageaient dans les mêmes conditions que les esclaves africains ».

Les matelots embarqués de force à bord des navires corsaires ou de Sa Gracieuse Majesté, étaient traités comme les esclaves noirs qui représentaient parfois un quart des effectifs. Peter Lamboru Wilson écrit dans Utopies Pirates : « Les travailleurs de la mer constituaient une sorte de proto-prolétariat. Les conditions de travail des marines marchandes d'Europe offraient un tableau abominable du capitalisme naissant - et les conditions prévalant dans les marines de guerre étaient encore pires » . D'ailleurs, jusqu'au début du XX· siècle, ce seront les mêmes hommes qui défricheront l'Amérique, construiront routes et voies ferrées, assécheront les marais, s'épuiseront dans les usines tandis que les Noirs traînaillaient dans les plantations du Sud.


Inventeur en l960 avec Stanley Engelman de la Cliométrie, méthode d'évaluation historique appuyée sur les mathématiques et les statistiques, Robert Fogel, Prix Nobel d'Economie 1993, ne se fit pas que des amis en démontrant que les conditions d’existence des Noirs dans les plantations du Sud étaient bien meilleures que celles des ouvriers (blancs) du Nord, exploités dans ce que William Blake appelait les usines de Satan. Comme dans l'Europe livrée au capitalisme sauvage et à la révolution industrielle. Ou l'Angleterre de Charles Dickens, où pour huit pence par jour des enfants de six ans travaillaient seize heures d'affilée dans les mines. Fouettés et frappés à coups de barres de fer - les billy-rollers - pour un mot ou un geste. Des dizaines de milliers d'entre eux furent estropiés, défigurés par un machinisme primitif. Sans compter le sort tragique de milliers d'orphelins ramoneurs.


Alors, Victor Schoelcher ou le sanglant abbé Henri Grégoire, qui n'eurent jamais un mot de compassion pour les Blancs asservis, se consacraient à l'émancipation noire. En Angleterre, Granville Sharp créait en 1760 la Société anti-esclavagiste et en 1787 le Comité Parlementaire pour l’Abolition. De grandes âmes y adhérèrent. William Wilberforce, Thomas Clarkson qui menèrent de bruyantes actions politiques. Aujourd'hui, on couvrirait d'honneurs ces militants d'une « philanthropie télescopique » selon la formule méprisante de Dickens. Lui savait quels étaient les traitements honteux infligés aux « pauvres en surplus » des faubourgs d'Europe.

Jim REEVES.

Rivarol

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lundi, 29 avril 2013

Algerije: Geschiedenis, Geopolitiek en Actuele Destabilisering

Robert Steuckers voor Mediagroep Syrië

Algerije: Geschiedenis, Geopolitiek en Actuele Destabilisering

 

Samenvatting infoavond Algerije met Robert Steuckers – 24 april 2013

 

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In 2009 werd Bouteflika bij presidentsverkiezingen met ruim 90% wederom herkozen als president van Algerije. Na zijn overwinning beloofde hij de komende vijf jaar 150 miljard dollar (112,8 miljard euro) te investeren in de economie en drie miljoen nieuwe banen te creëren. Algerije kampt met een hoge werkloosheid, woningnood en corruptie.

 

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  • Algerije: oeroude geschiedenis.
  • Deel van het Romeinse Rijk.
  • Reservoir aan tarwe, olijven.
  • Berbers wonen in bergen langs de kust = stammen. Bondgenoten van Rome tegen Carthago.
  • Jugurtha: Numidische koning verloor een oorlog tegen Rome na een bloedige opstand.

 

  • Marokkaanse legioenen – Karavlakken
  • Christelijke gewelddadige sekte = Donatisten/Circoncelliones. Sterke invloed in de Noord-Afrikaanse kerk en ten slotte zelfdestructief toen de islam in de 7e eeuw Noord-Afrika veroverde.
  • Rijk land voor een bepaald aantal mensen.
  • Recrutering Eerste en Tweede Wereldoorlog door de Fransen = geld voor familie.

 

  • Oppervlakkige islamisering: verovering van Spanje vanaf 711.
  • Enkele stammen werden verjoodst: La Kahina
  • Verschillende dynastieën (Berbers) en opstanden (onstabiel).
  • Leger van Arabië: Beni Hilal (1048).
  • Oppervlakkige Germanisering door Vandalen: zeemacht.

 

  • Nesten van piraten (Rabat, Algiers) gedurende eeuwen in Noord-Afrika = nieuwe rijkdom door plunderingen. Mensen uit Europa worden slaven.
  • Toledo: drie eeuwen islamitisch (Moorse tijd: 712-1085).
  • Bezetting door Spanje van delen van Marokko tegen piraterij.
  • 16e eeuw: Algerije wordt een Turkse provincie.
  • Verovering van Algerije: 1830-1871 door Fransen die zorgden voor een moderne administratie.

 

  • Sahara: verovering in 1903.
  • 1947: opstand van Abdel Khader: vanuit het westen en de bergen tegen Frankrijk.
  • Bevolking vergast door Frankrijk: rook in de grotten in het noorden van Algerije.
  • Een miljoen Fransen en vele Europeanen bevolken Algerije en Noord-Afrika.
  • Oran bevolkt door Spanjaarden.

 

  • Geen kolonie voor Leopold I.
  • Ophitsen van Arabieren tegen Berbers door de Fransen.
  • Steden langs de kust ontwikkelen zich: arme bevolking.
  • Frans nationaliteit aan Algerijnse joden, vroegere ‘dhimmi’.
  • Krimoorlog.

 

  • Anti-semitische rellen in Algerije zoals in Rusland. Linkse krachten lokten deze uit.
  • Turken hitsen Salafisten/Senoessisten op tegen Italianen in Libië (Ataturk – 1914). Senoessisten bewapend door de Turken en de Duitsers; bondgenoten van Toeareg-stammen.
  • Spaanse griep na W.O.I.: 100.000den doden.
  • Economische bloei: wijngaarden, citrusvruchten, industriële gewassen.
  • Modern Algerijns nationalisme: Messali Hadj (familie van Ottomaanse origine) zat een tijdje in de gevangenis. Bouwde een ondergrondse beweging voor onafhankelijkheid.

 

  • Programma = lekenstaat naar het voorbeeld van Atatürk.
  • Mobilisatie van stammen voor het Franse leger.
  • Algerijnse oorlog was tegen Fransen en tussen Algerijnen. De orde werd gehandhaafd door Algerijnse troepen: ‘messalisten’ <> ‘frontisten’: 10.000 doden.
  • Abassi Madani: bommen in Radio Algiers (FLN).
  • 1989: steunt FIS (fundamentalisten): oproep jihad tegen Algerijnse regering.

 

  • AIS = leger FIS <> andere salafisten, gesteund door de regering.
  • 2003: Einde strijd. Madani gaat in ballingschap naar Saudi-Arabië en later Qatar.
  • 1962: Frankrijk wint de oorlog tegen Algerije: veel gesneuvelden.
  • Kasbah: oncontroleerbare gesloten wijken. Hier werden opstandelingen uitgeschakeld.
  • Ahmed Ben Bella: eerste president (Marokkaan). Richtte het FLN op.

 

  • Boumedienne: tweede president en Eerste minister tot 1978 (rebellenleider).
  • Arabisering is een ideaal naar voorbeeld van Syrië / Egypte.
  • Onderwijzers worden gezocht bij moslimbroeders in Egyte. Geheime salafisering / islamisering / linkse trotskistische elementen.
  • Ben Bella: banneling in Frankrijk / Zwitserland.
  • Boumedienne: bondgenoten zijn Chaouia Berbers. Voert geen religieuze politiek, eigen sociaal systeem en nationalisatie van de olie.

 

  • Algerijnse diplomatie: verzoening tussen Irak en Iran (1995).
  • Olieprijs zakt met 2/3e van de waarde: opstand, ontstaan FIS, die alle verkiezingen winnen.
  • Bendjedid wordt verdreven.
  • Burgeroorlog: jaren ’90.
  • Heden: Leger staat klaar met Russische tanks: geen Tunesië of Libië.

 

  • Marokko is belangrijk in de strategie van de VS.
  • Olie: Nigeria, Kameroen. Algerije: ook prooi van Arabische Lente.
  • Militaire actie in Mali.
  • Qatar: Aqmi islamisten betalen tegen Algerijnse overheid.
  • 2012: Vier Amerikaanse NGO’s opgericht in Algerije.

 

  • Maart 2012: Abd al-Kader: “Arabische Liga is niet Arabisch en geen Liga”.
  • B. H. Levy: “Algerije is geen Arabisch land en geen moslimland. Het is een joods, Frans land”.
  • Doel: wahabitisch liberaal systeem installeren naar het voorbeeld van Qatar. Controle over de Sahel en politiek tegen Europese en Chinese invloed.
  • Joodse stammen zouden een staat van Likud (Israël) krijgen.

samedi, 27 avril 2013

José Antonio Primo de Rivera: A Spiritual Patriot

José Antonio Primo de Rivera:
A Spiritual Patriot

 Ex: http://www.counter-currents.com/

Editor’s Note:

The following article is being reprinted in honor of the birthday of Don José Antonio Primo de Rivera y Sáenz de Heredia, 1st Duke of Primo de Rivera, 3rd Marquis of Estella, Grandee of Spain, who was born on April 24, 1903. His greatest accomplishment was founding the Falange Española (“Spanish Phalanx”), for which he was murdered on November 20, 1936 by Spain’s Communist “Republican” regime. See also on this site Julius Evola’s “What is Spanish Falangism? [2]

“Fascism was born to inspire a faith not of the Right (which at bottom aspires to conserve everything, even injustice) or of the Left (which at bottom aspires to destroy everything, even goodness), but a collective, integral, national faith.”

José Antonio Primo de Rivera

JOSE-ANTONIO-PRIMO-DE-RIVERA.jpgJosé Antonio Primo de Rivera y Saenz de Heredia Marques de Estella or José Antonio (as he is more commonly called) was born on April 24, 1903 in Madrid to grow up in a healthy aristocratic family environment as the eldest son of General Miguel Primo de Rivera, who was the Leader of Spain from 1923 to 1930. His family was socially prominent in Andalusia, having intermarried with large landholders and merchants around Jerez de la Frontera. From his father José Antonio inherited the title marqués de Estella.

His father, after a rapid and brilliant military career in Cuba, the Philippines, and Morocco, became governor of Cádiz (1915), then in turn captain general of Valencia, Madrid, and Catalonia. From Catalonia he staged a coup d’etat in September 1923, dissolving the Cortes and then establishing, with the full approval of King Alfonso XIII, a military directory. The constitution of 1876 as well as civil liberties were suspended. The military dictatorship was replaced by a civil one (1925); both ruled quite moderately, without the brutalities and extreme repression that characterized later dictatorships.

Miguel Primo de Rivera ended the war in Morocco (1926), introduced many measures aimed at economic modernization and administrative reform, and launched an ambitious program of public works, but his rule aroused the opposition of anarcho-syndicalists, Catalan regionalists, and all liberals. His regime was in more than one instance misguided, clumsy, and naive, but it was a basically generous and inclusive one. Spain under him would develop economically, and all Spaniards would share the benefits. There were public works, greater employment, more schools, sanitary improvements, and attention given to worker’s rights. An uprising in 1929 by the liberals did not succeed, but various political and economic failures of the regime soon led to his resignation (Jan., 1930). He died in exile in Paris, reportedly of a broken heart.

José Antonio was an intense intellectual and studied the works of philosophers and political thinkers such as Spengler, Keyserling, Marx, Lenin, Ortega, Mussolini, and Trotsky. He went to the University of Madrid to study law and after military service he began a career as a lawyer in 1925. When his father’s memory was being made a mockery of in the Cortes (parliament), he involved in politics when he held speeches defending the policies of his father and finally decided to run for parliament. The more they attacked and ridiculed his father, the more antagonistic he became toward their insistence on middle-class liberal democracy and parliamentary forms. His disdain for the political realm would inspire in him a theory for a political system that would retain the positive aspects of his father’s regime and create others that would fix the faults. José Antonio also edited the right-wing journal, El Fascio. After it was shut down by the Republican government he wrote for the periodical ABC.

The Republic was set up in Spain on April 14, 1931 with the end of General Primo de Rivera’s dictatorship. The country was therefore not looking for another authoritarian form of government, and definitely not a monarchy since Alfonso XIII had shown that he was utterly incompetent at ruling the Spanish people. The Left finally had the opportunity to govern Spain their way. Yet, disgust with the way things were going was evident just a few months after the Republic was created. In the years that followed emotions became stressed and nerves taut. Promises of change were being broken faster than they were made. The Cortes was plagued with the constant bickering of members concerned only with their propaganda and affairs. Spanish liberalism started to rise and the possibility of creating a political alternative began to be discussed.

World War I had left Europe in a state of disarray. National spirits had risen like heavy perfume on a cold night, sweetening what was left of putrid Europe. Underneath this cloud, however, was still the problem of class struggle and the question of social justice. These two components – national interest and the social question – eventually sparked a new movement, one that called for the nation irrespective of class – nationalistic and socialist. Spain was in a far worse condition than any other country with the possible exception of Portugal, after World War I. The country was in a semi-medieval rut. Around the beginning of the twentieth century about ninety-eight percent of the land was owned by about three percent of the total population. The society was mainly agrarian and organized labor seemed unheard of. Although Spain was improving, thanks to the help of the constitutional monarchy that began in 1875 and the dictatorship of General Primo de Rivera, its growth was unusually slow. And to make matters worse, the regions that did see economic growth were isolated, though more culturally than geographically. Class struggle became increasingly exacerbated. Perhaps the only thing that the middle class, which would be the main component of the Fascist movement, was passionate about at the time was the abatement of the proletarian rebellion, if not avoiding it altogether.

The conditions were finally right for the growth of a national socialist movement. Differing levels of the new movement developed in two other countries beside Spain. Germany would take part in a national socialist movement that suppressed the socialism under the bloated pride of nationalism. Italy apparently had a pragmatic reconciliation of socialist and nationalist aspirations. Spain’s national socialist, or Fascist, movement, however, took on a more personal, or individual, patriotic role. The stage was being prepared for the beginning of a Spanish national socialist party, José Antonio Primo de Rivera’s party.

José Antonio offered a fresh look at the system of government. He sympathized with the Republic in feeling disdain for a capitalist system. Like the Left, José Antonio believed that Spain had been suffering from the capitalist plague “that turns the worker into a dehumanized cog in the machinery of bourgeois production.” However, he also believed that the solution was not the communism that the Left offered. José Antonio argued that while a capitalist system “dehumanized” a person, communism “absorbs the individual personality into the State.”

He spent some time during the early months of 1933 looking for someone to lead a new national socialist movement. He deemed himself unable, claiming that he had “too many intellectual preoccupations to be a leader of the masses” and his possible financiers did not wish to back “another Primo de Rivera.” Fortunately, José Antonio found “a solid collaborator” in Ruiz de Alda. Alda was a renowned aviator who himself had been attracted by nationalistic appeals and distrusted the established parties. They got to work together about creating their idealistic brand of national syndicalism. Now all they had to do was wait for a moment when the political atmosphere would be more favorable. The wait was not long for in the fall of that year elections were to be held.

On October 29, 1933 in the Teatro Comedia, José Antonio Primo de Rivera gave a speech where he announced his election into the Cortes and the creation of the Falange Española. José Antonio announced that Sunday evening in the Teatro Comedia to a crowd of about 3,000 persons what the Falange stood for: The faith of the Falange was in Spain, that is in the total synthesis of all individuals and classes, which thus synthesized into a new individual had a divine destiny. Within this synthesis, there could not be political parties: religion would be tolerated so long as it did not interfere in undefined affairs not of its competence: there could be no drones nor parasites in the new society: all men would have the right but also the duty to work for the community.

To achieve the new society, violence might be necessary, but it was not an end in itself. He launched the Falange as a movement committed to overthrowing the government if the political parties of the left should manage to impose their policies on the country. It was part militia, part political party, and part movement, inspired by Mussolini’s fascism, and started preaching about the need for a greater national interest that would be above all the particular or group interests then claiming for attention, and that the answer was not in either the Right or the Left, but in an amalgamation of the best of both.

The parties initials F.E. for Falange Española make the Spanish word for “faith,” summarizing the feeling of what José Antonio held for Spain. He expounded his Revolutionary views in his periodicals F.E. (1934) and Arriba (1935), and when these publications were suppressed by the state, he addressed meetings across the country and made speeches in the Cortes (parliament), to which he had been elected in 1933. In its manifesto the Falange condemned socialism, Marxism, republicanism, and capitalism and proposed that Spain should become a Fascist state. Professing generally the principles of fascism, the Falange distinguished itself from other fascist groups by its great emphasis on national tradition, particularly the imperial and Renaissance Christian traditions of Spain.

The first months of the Falange showed great success. Already they had acquired more members than the National Syndicalists (Juntas de Ofensiva Nacional-Sindicalist – J.O.N.S.), the national syndicalist organization, which was headed by Ledesma Ramos. Among the new followers were many university students impressed with José Antonio’s rhetoric. The J.O.N.S. was similar in style, and quoted roughly one thousand members. There was an immense pressure for the two parties to merge, if they want to stay afloat in the political pool. On March 14, 1934 the J.O.N.S. joined the Falange to become one (FE-JONS) under José Antonio as its leader. José Antonio agreed to the union; he disliked Ledesma, the party’s leader, and the party’s “crudeness.”

Yet, violence was nothing new to the Falange party. The violence among Falangists and the Left was intense. Just a few days after the party had formed, its first member was killed. José Antonio had asserted that violence would be necessary, and he was absolutely realistic. Many attempts were made at his life, including once when a bomb was thrown at his vehicle. José Antonio reacted by getting out of his car and attempted to shoot the assailants. He did not shudder at the price of freedom of speech. Night after night there were reports of “suspect Fascists” being arrested or gunned down. In the speech of the founding of the Falange José Antonio declared, “We are not going to that place [the Cortes] to squabble with the habitués over the insipid scraps of an unclean feast. Our place is outside . . . our place is in the open air, under the clear night sky, sword in hand and stars above.”

A different type of violence was occurring in the party. Many were fearful of the party growing too conservative. While José Antonio was strengthening his control, Ledesma abandoned the party at the beginning of 1935. Later that year, José Antonio put his party at the service of the Italian government, from which he received a monthly subsidy until June 1936.

In 1935 the parties of the left formed the Popular Front, which came to power after the elections of February 1936, whereas the Falange won only 0.7 per cent of the vote. José Antonio was elected to the Cortes. Being a legally elected official mattered little to the Leftist-ruled government in Madrid. To them José Antonio was a symbol of everything they feared: Patriotism, Discipline, Morality, and Spirituality. At that time the Falange had neither the numbers nor the money to make a difference. There was no way the Republican government were going to allow the Falangists to gain any kind of power in Spain, in a formally legal way or otherwise.

For a while he managed to keep his followers from responding to the increasing violence in the streets. After the victory of the Popular Front the Falange Espaola grew rapidly and by July had a membership of 40,000. Then he too was swallowed in the gunpoint battles which were the regular form of intercourse at the street level. The situation having deteriorated further he ended up, after other options had failed, Primo de Rivera joined a conspiracy to overthrow the Popular Front government. Primo de Rivera fully supported the military rebellion in July 1936 against the republican government and after the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War the Falange became the dominant political movement of the Nationalists. The Falange militia joined the Insurgents in the Spanish civil war of 1936–39.

When word got back to the Republican government that Falangists were beginning to arm themselves, they set about arresting the leaders of the Falangist movement throughout Spain. The so-called Republican government never did a thing to stop the Communists and Socialists from arming themselves or the criminal acts perpetrated by these two groups.

Violence soared through the streets of Madrid. Falangists were being arrested and shot, and vice versa in retaliation. The tensions finally peaked when on the night of July 12, 1936. José Calvo Sotelo, the leading spokesman of the organized Right, was supposedly taken into custody. The next morning his body was found at the gates of a cemetery. This was the incident that sparked the fire. Riots broke out, rebellions were implemented, and on July 17, 1936 the Spanish Civil War began. With the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War, shortly after losing his seat in the Cortes at that time, the Spanish Falange was declared an illegal organization by the Republicans. They banned the party, arrested its leaders, and closed down its press. Primo de Rivera was arrested on June 5th 1936 and incarcerated in Alicante Prison by the puppet mercenaries of the State (police), in the power of his opponents. The Falange grew into one of the most powerful movements in Spain while José Antonio was in prison.

Primo de Rivera was tried for his part in the rebellion. He was given a summary trial for conspiring against the Republic and leading a Fascist-based organization and condemned to death. On November 18th 1936, José Antonio wrote, “Condemened to death yesterday, I pray God that if He does not still spare me from coming to that last trial, He may preserve in me up to the end the seemly submission with which I contemplate it, and that in judging my soul He may apply to it not the measure of my merits but that of His infinite Mercy.”

The circumstances surrounding José Antonio’s death are very peculiar. The Republican government had grown anxious of the rise in power of the Fascists. A Fascist crackdown was implemented. Fearful of what José Antonio might impress upon his followers to do, the Republican government kept him in jail for several months. In his Last Will and Testament José Antonio notes that it was not until five to six days before he wrote this statement that he was informed of the charges upon his indictment. On November 20, 1936, José Antonio Primo de Rivera was marched out of his cell in Alicante prison and with a crucifix in his hand and “prayer on his lips” and forgiveness for the enemies about to murder him was executed by a firing squad. José Antonio died like a Man, he died a Hero, a Martyr and a Saint.

News of his death was suppressed until a year later. The location of his body in the Alicante prison cemetery was unknown until his brother Miguel, after being released from prison, was able to provide information. Before Miguel’s statement of the events, the Republican government had tried to cover up the execution by claiming that a mob broke into the jail and killed José Antonio.

The death of José Antonio led to the death of his Falange. The Falange that followed would go through vast changes. There was much bickering over who would succeed José Antonio. A man, most unworthy of the position, named Hedilla led the organization for only brief period of time. For Franco was looming in the background, growing more victorious. Eventually the Generalissimo declared himself the jefe nacional and, on April 19, 1937, changed the organization into the Falange Espanola Tradicionalista y de las Juntas de Ofensiva Nacional-Sindicalist.

Finally, after three years of lies, José Antonio was given his due respect in 1939. His remains were excavated and moved to the Escorial Monastery. Planes dropped wreaths on the Alicante cemetery, and Franco broadcast a tribute to the dead leader. A huge funeral mass was held that lasted for 10 days and included a 284-mile procession with his coffin on Fascist shoulders. Mussolini had Italian Fascists personally carry a bronze wreath to his grave. José Antonio was buried at the Escorial Monastery in the Guadarrama Mountains among Spain’s king and queens. After Franco had built the Valley of the Fallen his remains were moved there on March 30, 1959 for the last time.

General Franco’s party treated José Antonio as a martyr to gain the support of the National Revolutionary movement’s followers. Merged with the Carlist militia by Francisco Franco in 1937, the organization was renamed Falange Española Tradicionalista and was made the official party of the Nationalist state. It was a much less independent force than Italian fascism, however, and was exploited and manipulated by Franco. From the middle of World War II on, the party grew steadily weaker, and Franco sought to make it a kind of bureaucratic nationalist front. The Falange movement itself was diluted, and any vestiges of the old revolutionary spirit were eradicated in order to appease the Roman Catholic Church and the military. By the early 1970s, it had virtually no influence. José Antonio Primo de Rivera’s articles and speeches help to form some of the doctrine of Franco’s Nationalist movement; but like any and all mainstream political organisations, they could not truly bread beyond conventionalism and institute the truly Revolutionary aspects of the doctrine that would have made Spain a true Nation of the People.

With everything that has been said, it is difficult to image that even today people carelessly throw around a word as powerful as “Fascist.” This term has been loosely used to label anyone person or organization of the Right that is seen as revolutionary, anyone who loves his country above all else, and anyone who approves of an authoritarian government. Today, patriotic middle class Christians that believe in individual responsibility seemed to be labeled Fascists or Fascist sympathizers. Julius Evola has commented that “fascism has undergone a process which can be called mythologization, and the attitude which many adopt towards it is of a passionate and irrational kind rather than a critical, intellectual one.”

In a note that was eventually published in the Spanish Press on the 10th of December 1934, José Antonio clearly states that the “Falange Espanola de las J.O.N.S. is not a Fascist movement. It has certain coincidences with Fascism in essential points which are of universal validity; but it is daily acquiring a clearer outline of its own, and is convinced that by following this path and no other it will find its most fruitful possibilities of development.” Even at the end of his life he was intensely frustrated with the political name-calling and bullying. “It astounds me that after three years the immense majority of our countrymen should persist in judging us without having begun to show the least sign of understanding us, and indeed without having even sought or accepted the slightest information.”

It is no wonder that in this day and age of immorality and anti-heroes, that José Antonio stands out like a Beacon of Light with an ever growing popularity and following throughout, not only Spain but the rest of the World as well.

Rivera’s Obras completas (“Complete Works”) appeared in 1944.

Source: http://www.geocities.com/integral_tradition/rivera.html [3]

 


Article printed from Counter-Currents Publishing: http://www.counter-currents.com

URL to article: http://www.counter-currents.com/2013/04/jose-antonio-primo-de-rivera-a-spiritual-patriot/

URLs in this post:

[1] Image: http://www.counter-currents.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/JoseAntonioFEJONS.jpg

[2] What is Spanish Falangism?: http://www.counter-currents.com/2010/11/what-is-spanish-falangism/

[3] http://www.reocities.com/integral_tradition/rivera.html: http://www.reocities.com/integral_tradition/rivera.html

mercredi, 24 avril 2013

Sorel y el Sindicalismo Nacional

Georges_Sorel.jpg

Sorel y el Sindicalismo Nacional

 Gustavo Morales

Ex: http://alternativaeuropeaasociasioncultural.wordpress.com/

Si alguien se atreve a levantar su voz contra las ilusiones del racionalismo en el acto es considerado como un enemigo de la democracia

Georges Sorel (1847-1922) era un ingeniero francés, padre del revisionismo revolucionario que supera el carácter materialista del marxismo y llegará a ser básico para la génesis del fascismo. El ambiente intelectual de Sorel se enmarca en el Barrio Latino de París, muy lejos de las frías escuelas teoréticas de Viena.
Marxista confeso, Sorel pretende, originalmente, completar el pensamiento de su maestro. A principios del siglo XX el pensamiento socialista debe enfrentarse a una serie de problemas nuevos, difícilmente explicables mediante el análisis marxista ortodoxo. Sorel se desmarca de las estructuras racionalistas y destaca que el marxismo es la construcción de un mito revolucionario para ilusionar a las masas, negando su valor como explicación racional de la realidad.
Sorel niega el valor del racionalismo, al que acusa de corruptor. Antepone a Pascal y a Bergson frente a Descartes y a Sócrates. Sorel sustituye los fundamentos racionalistas y hegelianos del marxismo por:
1.- La nueva visión de la naturaleza humana que predica Le Bon, quien aconseja que "para vencer a las masas hay que tener previamente en cuenta los sentimientos que las animan, simular que se participa de ellos e intentar luego modificarlos provocando, mediante asociaciones rudimentarias, ciertas imágenes sugestivas; saber rectificar si es necesario y, sobre todo, adivinar en cada instante los sentimientos que se hacen brotar". Resume Le Bon que "la razón crea la ciencia, los sentimientos dirigen la historia".
2.- Por el anticartesianismo de Bergson. Las enseñanzas de Bergson permiten sustituir el contenido racionalista, es decir, utópico, del marxismo por los mitos revolucionarios. Sorel afirma que todo gran movimiento viene motivado por mitos. El método psicológico toma el relevo al enfoque mecanicista tradicional (1899), frente al método científico, el recurso a una teoría de los mitos sociales. Sorel no repudia el marxismo, incluso llega a defenderlo contra algunos socialistas democráticos. Se debe a que considera que no existe ninguna relación entre la verdad de una doctrina y su valor operativo en tanto que instrumento de combate. Sorel desplaza el mito de la esfera del intelecto y lo instala en la de la afectividad y la actividad. Una mentalidad religiosa contra la mentalidad racionalista. Sorel recuerda que Bergson nos ha enseñado que la religión no ocupa en exclusiva la región de la conciencia profunda, la ocupan también, por las mismas razones, los mitos revolucionarios. Con ello, Sorel rechaza el presunto carácter científico del marxismo y niega la posibilidad de la explicación social en términos cuasi matemáticos.
3.- Por la rebelión de Nietzsche.. La única actitud coherente del revolucionario es la negación de los valores imperantes y la afirmación de otros nuevos y rebeldes. En Reflexiones sobre la violencia, Sorel afirma: Los mitos no son descripciones de cosas, sino expresiones de voluntad... conjuntos de imágenes capaces de evocar en bloque y exclusivamente a través de la intuición, previamente a cualquier tipo de análisis reflexivo, la masa de los sentimientos que corresponden a las diversas manifestaciones de la guerra librada por el socialismo en contra de la sociedad moderna. Sorel identifica mito y convicciones, entendiendo éstas en términos de las ideas y creencias de Ortega. Sorel distingue entre la ética del guerrero, que apoya, y la del intelectual, que condena: Ya no hubo soldados ni marinos, sólo hubo tenderos escépticos.

Fases del pensamiento soreliano

Socialismo marxista

En una primera fase, los sorelianos metamorfosean el marxismo, construyen una nueva ideología revolucionaria, desechando las teorías marxistas de plusvalor y de clase. Sorel vacía el marxismo de hedonismo y de materialismo, haciéndolo pasar de ser una máquina intelectual esclerotizada a una fuerza movilizadora en pos de la destrucción de lo que existe, el mundo materialista burgués. La teoría de los mitos se vuelve el motor de la revolución y la violencia su instrumento: La violencia proletaria, no sólo puede garantizar la revolución futura, sino que, además, parece ser el único medio de que disponen las naciones europeas, embrutecidas por el humanismo, para recobrar su antigua energía. Para Sorel, sólo los hombres que viven en estado de tensión permanente pueden alcanzar lo sublime. En esa vía, Sorel reivindica el cristianismo primitivo y el sindicalismo de combate de su tiempo. No nos molestaremos en demostrar que la idea de violencia revolucionaria no se ciñe al derramamiento de sangre ni a la brutalidad, que son inherentes a la explotación del trabajador, camuflada bajo la cortina de humo del sufragio partitocrático. Por esa vía, también la crítica del sociólogo Pareto al marxismo, base de su teoría de las élites, se acerca a la de Sorel.
 

Sindicalismo nacional

En una segunda fase, a partir de que Sorel abandona el socialismo (1909), el mito nacional sustituye al mito exclusivamente proletario, ya desalentado en la lucha contra la decadencia democrática y racionalista. La enseñanza obligatoria, la alfabetización en las zonas rurales, el acceso lento pero continuo de la clase obrera a la cultura, no favorecen la conciencia de clase del proletariado, sino más bien una nueva toma de conciencia de la identidad nacional. Los sorelianos ven la organización de la sociedad en términos sindicalistas. Sorel cree que el sindicalismo, en su lucha contra la dictadura de la burguesía y la dictadura del proletariado, ambas materialistas, posee un alto valor civilizatorio. La influencia de Sorel se refleja en el parlamento de productores defendido por José Antonio, así como en la afirmación: Concebimos a España como un gigantesco sindicato de productores. Ledesma asumirá, además, el término de sindicalismo nacional que se extiende entre los sorelianos franceses e italianos. A la postre, lo nacional vira hacia formas de sindicalismo al igual que los sindicalistas varían hacia diferentes escuelas de nacionalismo. Asumen, también, de Sorel que la disciplina, la autoridad, la solidaridad social, el sentido del deber y del sacrificio, los valores heroicos, son otras tantas condiciones necesarias para la supervivencia de la nación. El mito nacional releva al mito meramente social como motor revolucionario. Para ello, es preciso que la convicción se apodere absolutamente de la conciencia y actúe antes que los cálculos de la reflexión hayan tenido tiempo de aparecer en el espíritu. Es decir, opta por la opción de la nueva civilización que nace de la acción directa antes de la reflexión teórica. Aquí Ledesma recibe una mayor influencia soreliana que José Antonio, que a pesar de su renuncia a la torre de marfil de los intelectuales siente una cierta nostalgia por ella, visible en su Elogio y reproche a Ortega y Gasset.
La vanguardia cultural de la primera década del siglo XX, los futuristas, reciben con entusiasmo las ideas sorelianas prefascistas: Los elementos esenciales de nuestra poesía serán el coraje, la audacia y la rebelión.. Queremos derribar los museos, las bibliotecas, atacar el moralismo (...) Ensalzamos las resacas multicolores y polifónicas de las revoluciones. En pie en la cumbre del mundo, lanzamos una vez más el desafío a las estrellas. (Marinetti, 1909).
Un hecho crucial en la opinión pública occidental está en 1920. Cuando, respaldados por numerosas huelgas parciales y ocupaciones de fábricas en el norte de Italia, los nacionalsindicalistas italianos presenten su propuesta de autogestión de la industria al ministro de Trabajo, Arturo Labriola. El primer ministro Giolitti reconoce el derecho de participación de los trabajadores en las empresas. El nacionalsindicalismo italiano obtiene así una victoria épica.
Con todo ello, los sorelianos abren la tercera vía entre las dos concepciones totales del hombre y la sociedad que son el liberalismo y el marxismo, ideologías presas del racionalismo donde se prescinde de la intuición y del sentimiento en favor de un imposible concepción matemática de las ciencias sociales. El discurso de Sorel se hace transversal, basado fundamentalmente en el poder de los sindicatos pero repudiando el carácter meramente reivindicativo de éstos, es decir, su domesticación en brazos del socialismo parlamentario. Sorel repudia los pactos y acuerdos con la burguesía, así como el sistema de dominio del liberalismo democratizado: el parlamentarismo. Sorel odió tanto a la burguesía y la democracia liberal que recibió con expresiones de júbilo la revolución rusa, a pesar de haber criticado enérgicamente el leninismo de los revolucionarios profesionales. Sorel ve en Lenin la revancha del genio creador del jefe contra la vulgaridad democrática. Aconsejaba a los sindicatos alejarse del mundo corrupto de los políticos y de los intelectuales burgueses, distinguiendo entre conspiración y revolución. Sólo la segunda da vida a una nueva moral. Sólo los trabajadores más militantes -dice Sorel- son sindicalistas: El obrero de la gran industria sustituirá al guerrero de la ciudad heroica. Por tanto, los valores de ambos son comunes y el ascetismo y la eliminación del individualismo suponen características compartidas por el soldado-monje y por el obrero-combatiente. Podemos encontrar coincidencias entre el desarrollo de Sorel y el de Spengler.
 

Fascismo

Sorel no desacreditó el uso que los fascistas hacían de su nombre. De hecho, el fascismo nace de la crítica sindicalista, con un fuerte componente soreliano, al marxismo racionalista ortodoxo. El fascismo se revela contra la deshumanización introducida por la modernización en las relaciones humanas, pero, al contrario que el tradicionalismo, desea conservar celosamente los logros del progreso. La revolución fascista busca transformar la naturaleza de las relaciones entre el individuo y la comunidad sin que por ello sea necesario desbaratar el motor de la actividad económica moderna. Los sorelianos son los primeros revolucionarios surgidos de la izquierda que se niegan a cuestionar la propiedad privada. Consideran que atacarla supone confundir al enemigo real: la concepción burguesa y materialista de la existencia, que también encarnan el jacobino y el socialdemócrata.
 
sorel9788496266957.jpg
Los sorelianos se mantienen fieles a la idea de que todo progreso depende, y dependerá, de una economía de mercado, al igual que hoy defiende el economista joseantoniano Velarde Fuertes, distintas de los planteamientos estatistas de Dionisio Ridruejo. En este punto del debate, los nacionalsindicalistas se escinden, la mayoría pasa a apoyar directamente al fascismo, incluso cuando éste modera su aspecto de transformación económica de la sociedad. Otro pequeño sector, el ala izquierda, rompe con el fascismo y recupera el viejo axioma del sindicalismo revolucionario: la sociedad de trabajadores libres.
El paso de uno a otro es visible en José Antonio en la comparativa del Discurso de la Comedia de 1933 al Discurso de la revolución Española de 1935, en el que enumera cuatro tipos de propiedad: la personal, la familiar, la comunal y la sindical. Están ausentes la estatal y la correspondiente a sociedades anónimas.
En cualquier caso, con la síntesis fascista, la estética revolucionaria y heroica se convierte en parte integrante de la política y de la economía.
 

Conclusión

Sorel, en los artículos reunidos en las Ilusiones del Progreso, denuncia a Descartes, dado que sus ideas lo son de la clase dominante. Desecha el racionalismo que deviene en optimismo al entender el mundo como un inmenso almacén donde todos pueden satisfacer sus necesidades materiales. Sorel pide que el socialismo se transforme en una filosofía de comportamiento moral, donde las relaciones de los trabajadores generen una nueva ética, absolutamente distinta de la moral burguesa, el enemigo real de Sorel.
Sorel abandona el proletarismo cuando comprueba que la violencia obrera, sustentada en las reivindicaciones materiales, no eleva al proletariado al nivel de una fuerza histórica susceptible de engendrar una nueva civilización. Sorel anuncia que el sindicalismo se separa del socialismo racionalista y repudia, finalmente, a Marx y a Hegel. Sorel asume la frase de Croce y afirma: El socialismo ha muerto, cuando descubre, con amargura, que las ideas, preocupaciones, fines y comportamientos del trabajador no difieren de aquellas de los burgueses. El carácter pactista del parlamentarismo liberal ha seducido a los partidos socialistas europeos occidentales y los sindicatos, animados por la acción directa y el mito de la huelga revolucionaria, o se amoldan o se separan radicalmente del socialismo parlamentario.
Sorel se desentiende de las construcciones teóricas que anteceden a la acción. Él es un enamorado del hecho revolucionario, lo que ayuda a comprender su paso del marxismo de combate, que abandona cuando la socialdemocracia se domestica en los parlamentos, y da su posterior adhesión a los procesos de revolución nacional que sacuden Europa.
Cuando el 23 de marzo de 1919, en la plaza San Sepolcro de Milán, Mussolini funda el fascismo italiano, entre los presentes se encuentran muchos sindicalistas sorelianos, hastiados de la connivencia de la burguesía con el Partido Socialista Italiano del que también procede el futuro Duce.
En resumen, el fascismo no nace de la burguesía sino que es una escisión de la izquierda socialista, la fracción de aquellos que abominan del liberalismo parlamentario y consideran que la misión histórica del proletariado no es imponer una dictadura sino crear una civilización.
A la postre el fascismo pierde su empuje revolucionario, es decir, cuando inicia su política de pactos con la burguesía industrial, los partidos nacionales del resto de Europa rompen con él y buscan un nuevo engarce de la revolución nacional con el brío puro y antipolítico de las masas anarcosindicalistas. El mejor ejemplo lo tenemos en Ramiro Ledesma y La Conquista del Estado. Ledesma no opta por el fascismo, a pesar de su viva la Italia de Mussolini o viva la Germania de Hitler, ni por el bolchevismo, también a pesar de su viva la Rusia de Stalin, sino por algo consustancial a todos ellos, el fin de la democracia liberal, ese régimen basado en palabras del soreliano Berth, en el voto secreto...el símbolo perfecto de la democracia. Ved a ese ciudadano, ese miembro de lo soberano, que temblorosamente va a ejercer su soberanía, se esconde, elude las miradas, ninguna papeleta será lo suficientemente opaca para ocultar a las miradas indiscretas su pensamiento....
Ledesma, como Sorel y José Antonio, entienden que el trabajador está llamado a recuperar el sentimiento heroico de la existencia, antaño en manos del guerrero.
Sorel es la superación del mecanicismo marxista.. José Antonio da un paso más, superando el fascismo corporativista y enlazando la cuestión social y la nacional con el compromiso humano y utópico.
En resumen, el fascismo es un revisión del socialismo. El nacionalsindicalismo, al final, supone una superación del carácter material y pactista de ambos, entroncando con el sindicalismo revolucionario y la nacionalización del proletariado, construyendo una sociedad vertebrada sin estatismo.

lundi, 22 avril 2013

Enlightenment & Global History

Enlightenment & Global History

Posted By Domitius Corbulo

Ex: http://www.counter-currents.com/

The history of Europe is undergoing a massive re-interpretation in the name of a World History for Us All [2]. Europe and Asia are now regularly portrayed as “surprisingly similar [3]” in their markets, standard of living, and scientific knowhow as late as 1750/1800. Jack Goldstone has even argued that there “were no cultural or institutional dynamics leading to a materially superior civilization in the West” before 1850,[1] except for the appearance in Britain, “due to a host of locally contingent [4] factors,” of an “engineering culture.” 

Academics are instructing their students that Europeans don’t inhabit a continental homeland independently of Asia and Africa. Their history has to be seen in the context of “reciprocal connections” with the globe. “The exceptional interconnectedness of Afroeurasia [5] shaped the history of this world zone in profound ways.” The only thing that stands out about Europeans was the “windfall” profits they obtained from the Americas, the “lucky” presence of coal in England, and the blood-stained manner they went about creating a new form of international slavery [6] combined with “scientific [7]” racism. Only a handful of soon-to-retire admirers of the West [8] remain.

The Enlightenment, always viewed as a European phenomenon, and respected in academia for its call upon “humanity” to subject all authority to critical reflection, is now enduring a fundamental revision as a movement that was global in origins and character. This is the view expressed in a recent article, “Enlightenment in Global History: A Historiographical Critique,” authored by Sebastian Conrad, who holds the Chair of Modern History at Freie University, Berlin. This is not an isolated paper, but a “historiographical” assessment based on current trends in the global history of the Enlightenment. The article was published in The American Historical Review, the official publication of the American Historical Association [9], and since 1895 a preeminent journal for the historical profession in the United States.

Conrad calls upon historians to move “beyond the obsession” and the “European mythology” that the Enlightenment was original to Europe:

The assumption that the Enlightenment was a specifically European phenomenon remains one of the foundational premises of Western modernity. . . . The Enlightenment appears as an original and autonomous product of Europe, deeply embedded in the cultural traditions of the Occident. . . . This interpretation is no longer tenable.

Conrad’s “critique” is vaporous, absurd, and unscholarly; a demonstration of the irrational lengths otherwise intelligent Europeans will go in their efforts to promote egalitarianism and affirmative action on a global scale. It is important for defenders of the West to see with clear eyes the extremely weak scholarship standing behind the prestigious titles and “first class” journals of many professors today. Conrad’s claims could have been taken seriously only within an academic environment bordering on pathological wishful thinking. (He is grateful to nine established academic readers plus “the anonymous reviewers” working for the AHR). The intended goal of Conrad’s paper is not truth but the dissolution of Europe’s intellectual identity within a mishmash of intercultural connections.

It should be noted that Conrad is a product of his time. The ploy to rob Europeans of their heritage has been in the making for some decades. It is no longer an affair restricted to squabbling academics looking for promotion, but has become an established reality across every high school and college in the West. This can be partly ascertained from a reading of the 2011 AP World History Standard [10], as mandated by The College Board, which was created in 1900 to expand access to higher education, with a current membership of 5,900 of the world’s leading educational institutions. This Board is very clear in its mandate that the courses developed for advanced placement in world history (for students to pursue college level studies while in high school) should “allow students to make crucial connections . . . across geographical regions.” The overwhelming emphasis of the “curriculum framework” is on “interactions,” “connected hemispheres,” “exchange and communication networks,” “interconnection of the Eastern and Western hemispheres,” and so on. For all the seemingly neutral talk about regional connections, the salient feature of this mandate is on how developments inside Europe were necessarily shaped by developments occurring in neighboring regions or even the whole world. One rarely encounters an emphasis on how developments in Asia were determined by developments in Europe – unless, of course, they point to the destructive effects of European aggression.

Thus, the Board continually mandates the teaching of topics such as: how “the European colonization of the Americas led to the spread of diseases,” how “the introduction of European settlements practices in the Americas often affected the physical environment through deforestation and soil depletion,” how “the creation of European empires in the Americas quickly fostered a new Atlantic trade system that included the trans-Atlantic slave trade,” and so on. The curriculum is thoroughly Marxist in its accent on class relations, coerced labor, “modes of production,” economic change, imperialism, gender, race relations, demographic changes, and rebellions. Europe’s contribution to painting, architecture, history writing, philosophy and science is never highlighted except when they can be interpreted as “ideologies” of the ruling (European) classes. It is not that the curriculum ignores the obvious formation of non-Western empires, but the weight is always on how, for example, the rise of “new racial ideologies, especially Social Darwinism, facilitated and justified imperialism.” Even the overwhelming reality of Europe’s contribution to science and technology in the nineteenth and twentieth century is framed as a global phenomenon in which all the regions were equal participants.[2]

A similar curriculum can be found across all the Social Sciences and Humanities in Western academia. This has been well-documented by various organizations [11] and publications. Suffice it to add that this globalist curriculum has long been promoted through countless university programs, organizations and journals, including the World History Association [12] (1982), the Journal of World History [13] (1990), the online journal World History Connected [14] (2003), and the H-World network [15]. Every single world history textbook, as far as I know, written in the last three decades or so, views Europe as an interconnected region with no special identity.[3]

Meanwhile, the Western Civilization history course, virtually a standard curriculum offering 30 years ago, disappeared from American colleges; today, only two percent [16] of colleges offer western civilization as a course requirement. No wonder the authors of recent Western Civ texts, pleading for survival, have been adopting a globalist approach; Brian Levack et al. thus writes in The West, Encounters & Transformations (2007): “we examine the West as a product of a series of cultural encounters both outside the West and within it” (xxx). They claim that one of the prominent religious features of the West was Islam. Clifford Backman, in his just released textbook, The Cultures of the West (2013), traces the origins of the West to Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, and Israel; and then goes on to tell students that his book is different from previous texts in treating Islam as “essentially a Western religion” and examining “jointly” the history of Europe and the Middle Eastern world (xxii).[4]

Conrad’s article came out of this background. His article seeks to show that recent research has proven false the “standard” Eurocentric interpretation of the Enlightenment. Conrad views this standard interpretation as the “master” narrative today, which continues to exist in the face of mounting evidence against it. It is true that the Enlightenment is still viewed as uniquely European by a number of well-respected scholars such as Margaret Jacob, Gertrude Himmelfarb, and Roy Porter. It is, actually, the most-often referred Western legacy used by right wing liberals (or neoconservatives) against the multicultural emphasis on the equality of cultures. These days, defending the West has come down to defending the “universal” values of the Enlightenment – gender equality, freedom of thought, and individual rights – against the “intolerant” particularism of other cultures. The late Christopher Hitchens, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Niall Ferguson, Pascal Bruckner [17] are some of the most notorious advocates of these values as universal norms that represent all human aspirations. The immigration of non-Europeans in the West poses no menace to them as long as they are transformed into happy consuming liberals. I have no interest celebrating the West from this cosmopolitan standpoint. It is commonly believe (including by members of the New Right) that the global interpretation Conrad delineates against a European-centered Enlightenment is itself rooted in the philosophes exaltation of “mankind.” Conrad knows this; in the last two paragraphs he justifies his postmodern reading of history by arguing that the Enlightenment “language of universal claim and worldwide validity” requires that its origins not be “restricted” to Europe. The Enlightenment, if it is to fulfill its universal promises, must be seen as the actual child of peoples across the world.

This is the more reason why Conrad’s arguments must be exposed, not only are they historically false, but they provide us with an opportunity to suggest (and argue further in a future paper) that the values of the Enlightenment are peculiarly European, rooted in this continent’s history, and not universally true and applicable to humanity. These values, for one, are inconsistent with Conrad’s style of research. Honest reflection based on reason and open inquiry shows that the Enlightenment was exclusively European. The great thinkers of the Enlightenment were aristocratic representatives of their people with a sense of rooted history and lineage. They did not believe (except for a rare few) that all the peoples of the earth were members of a race-less humanity in equal possession of reason. When they wrote of “mankind” they meant “European-kind.” When they wrote about equality they meant that Europeans have an innate a priori capacity to reason. When they said that “only a true cosmopolitan can be a good citizen,” they meant that European nationals should enlarge their focus and consider Europe “as a great republic.”

What concerns Conrad, however; and what will be the focus of this essay, is the promotion of a history in which the diverse cultures of the world can be seen as equal participants in the making of the Enlightenment. Conrad wants to carry to its logical conclusion the allegedly “universal” ideals of the Enlightenment, hoping to persuade Westerners that the equality and the brotherhood of mankind require the promotion of a Global Enlightenment.

Conrad blunders right from the opening when he references Toby Huff’s book, Intellectual Curiosity and the Scientific Revolution, as an example of the “no longer tenable” “standard reading” of the Enlightenment. First, this book is about the uniquely “modern scientific mentality” witnessed in seventeenth century Europe, not about the eighteenth century Enlightenment. It is also a study written, as the subtitle says, from “a Global Perspective.” Rather than brushing off this book in one sentence, Conrad should have addressed its main argument, published in 2010 and based on the latest research, showing that European efforts to encourage interest in the telescope in China, the Ottoman Empire, and Mughal India “did not bear much fruit.” “The telescope that set Europeans on fire with enthusiasm and curiosity, failed to ignite the same spark elsewhere. That led to a great divergence that was to last all the way to the end of the twentieth century” (5). The diffusion of the microscope met the same lack of curiosity. Why would Asia experience an Enlightenment culture together with Europe if it only started to embrace modern science with advanced research centres in the twentieth century? This simple question does not cross Conrad’s mind; he merely cites an innocuous sentence from Huff’s book which contains the word “Enlightenment” and then, without challenging Huff’s argument, concludes that “this interpretation is no longer tenable.”

Conrad then repeats phrases to the effect that the Enlightenment needs to be seen originally as “the work of historical actors around the world.” But as he cannot come up with a single Enlightenment thinker from the eighteenth century outside Europe, he immediately introduces postmodernist lingo about “how malleable the concept” of Enlightenment was from its inception, from which point he calls for a more flexible and inclusive definition, so that he can designate as part of the Enlightenment any name or idea he encounters in the world which carries some semblance of learning. He also calls for an extension of the period of Enlightenment beyond the eighteenth century all the way into the twentieth century. The earlier “narrow definitions of the term” must be replaced by open-minded and tolerant definitions which reflect the “ambivalences and the multiplicity of Enlightenment views” across the world.

From this vantage point, he attacks the “fixed” standard view of the Enlightenment. Early on, besides Huff’s book, Conrad footnotes Peter Gay’s The Enlightenment: An Interpretation, 2 vols. (1966-1969), Dorinda Outram’s, The Enlightenment (1995), Hugh Trevor-Roper’s, History and the Enlightenment (2010), as well as The Blackwell Companion to the Enlightenment (1992). Of these, I would say that Gay is the only author who can be said to have offered a synthesis that came to be widely held, but only from about the mid-60s to the mid-70s. In the first page of his book, Gay distinctly states that “the Enlightenment was united on a vastly ambitious program, a program of secularism, humanity, cosmopolitanism, and freedom” (1966: 3). In the case of Outram’s book, it is quite odd why Conrad would include it as a standard account since the back cover alone says it will view the Enlightenment “as a global phenomenon” characterized by contradictory trends. The book’s focus is on the role of coffee houses, religion, science, gender, and government from a cross-cultural perspective. In fact, a few footnotes later, Conrad cites this same book as part of new research pointing to the “heterogeneity” and “fragmented” character of the Enlightenment. However, the book makes not claims that the Enlightenment originated in multiple places in the world, and this is clearly the reason Conrad has labeled it as part of the “standard” view.

The truth is that Conrad has no sources to back his claim that there is currently a “dominant” and uniform view. Gay, Outram, Trevor-Roper, [5] including other sources he cites later (to be addressed below), are not part of a dominant view, but evince instead what Outram noticed in her book (first published in 1995): “the Enlightenment has been interpreted in many different ways” (8). This is why Conrad soon admits that “at present, only a small – if vociferous – minority of historians maintain the unity of the Enlightenment project.” Since Gay died in 2006, Conrad then comes up with two names, Jonathan Israel and John Robertson, as scholars who apparently hold today a unified view – yet, he then concedes, in a footnote, that these two authors have “a very different Enlightenment view: for Israel the ‘real’ Enlightenment is over by the 1740s, while for Robertson it only begins then.” In other words, on the question of timing, they have diametrically different views.

“Historiographical” studies are meant to clarify the state of the literature in a given historical subject, the trends, schools of thought, and competing interpretations. Conrad instead misreads, confounds and muddles up authors and books. The reason Conrad relies on Outram, and other authors, both as “dominant” and as pleasingly diverse, is that European scholars have been long recognizing the complexity and conflicting currents within the Enlightenment at the same time that they have continued to view it as “European” with certain common themes. We thus find Outram showing appreciation for the multiplicity and variety of views espoused during the Enlightenment while recognizing certain unifying themes such as the importance of reason, “non-traditional ways of defining and legitimating power,” natural law, and cosmopolitanism (140).

Conrad needs to use the proponents of Enlightenment heterogeneity to make his case that the historiography on this subject has been moving in the non-Western direction he wishes to nudge his readers into believing. But he knows that current experts on the European Enlightenment have not identified an Enlightenment movement across the globe from the eighteenth to the twentieth century, so he must also designate them (if through insinuation) as members of a still dominant Eurocentric group.

In the end, the sources Conrad relies on to advance his globalist view are not experts of the European Enlightenment but world historians (or actually, historians of India, China, or Middle East) determined to unseat Europe from its privileged intellectual position. Right after stating that there are hardly any current proponents of the dominant view, and that “most authors stress its plural and contested character,” Conrad reverts back to the claim that there is a standard view insomuch as most scholars still see the “birth of the Enlightenment” as “entirely and exclusively a European affair” which “only when it was fully fledged was it then diffused around the globe.” Here Conrad finally footnotes a number of books which can be said to exhibit an old fashion admiration for the Enlightenment as a movement characterized by certain common concerns, though he never explains why these books are mistaken in delimiting the Enlightenment to Europe. One thing is certain, these works go beyond Gay’s thesis. Gertrude Himmelfarb’s The Roads to Modernity: The British, French, and American Enlightenments (2004), challenges the older focus on France, its anti-clericalism, and radical rejection of traditional ways, by arguing that there were English as well as American “Enlightenments” that were quite moderate in their assessments of what human reason could do to improve the human condition, respectful of age-old customs, prejudices, and religious beliefs. John Headley’s The Europeanization of the World (2008) is not about the Enlightenment but the long Renaissance. Tzvetan Todorov’s In Defence of the Enlightenment (2009), with its argument against current “adversaries of the Enlightenment, obscurantism, arbitrary authority and fanaticism,” can be effectively used against Conrad’s own unfounded and capricious efforts. The same is true of Stephen Bronner’s Reclaiming the Enlightenment (2004), with its criticism of activists on the Left for spreading confusion and for attacking the Enlightenment as a form of cultural imperialism. These two books are a summons to the Left not to abandon the critical principles inherent in the Enlightenment. Robert Louden’s, The World We Want: How and Why the Ideals of the Enlightenment Still Eludes Us (2007), ascertains the degree to which the ideals of the Enlightenment have been successfully actualized in the world, both in Europe and outside, by examining the spread of education, tolerance, rule of law, free trade, international justice and democratic rights. His conclusion, as the title indicates, is that the Enlightenment remains more an ideal than a fulfilled program.

What Conrad might have asked of these works is: why they took for granted the universal validity of ideals rooted in the soils of particular European nations? Why they all ignored the intense interest Enlightenment thinkers showed in the division of humanity into races? Why did all these books, actually, abandon the Enlightenment call for uninhibited critical thinking by ignoring the vivid preoccupation of Enlightenment thinkers with the differences, racial and cultural, between the peoples of the earth? Why did they accept (without question) the notion that the same Kant [18] who observed that (i) “so fundamental is the difference between these two races of man [black and white] . . . as great in regard to mental capacities as in color,” was thinking (ii) about “mankind” rather than European kind when he defined the Enlightenment as “mankind’s exit from its self-incurred immaturity” through the courage to use [one’s own understanding] without the guidance of another”? Contrary to what defenders of the “emancipatory project of the Enlightenment” would have us believe, these observations were not incidental but reflections expressed in multiple publications and debated heavily; what were the differences among the peoples of different climes and regions? The general consensus among Enlightenment thinkers (in response to this question) was that animals as well as humans could be arranged in systematic hierarchies. Carl Linnaeus, for example, considered Europeans, Asians, American Indians, and Africans different varieties of humanity.[6]

However, my purpose here is to assess Conrad’s global approach, not to invalidate the generally accepted view of the Enlightenment as a project for “humanity.” It is the case that Conrad wants to universalize the Enlightenment even more by seeing it as a movement emerging in different regions of the earth. The implicit message is that the ideals of this movement can become actualize if only we imagine its origins to have been global. But since none of the experts will grant him this favor, as they continue to believe it “originated only in Europe,” notwithstanding the variety and tension they have detected within this European movement, Conrad decides to designate these scholars, past and present, as members of a “dominant” or “master” narrative. He plays around with the language of postcolonial critiques — the “brutal diffusion” of Western values, “highly asymmetrical relations of power,” “paternalistic civilizing mission” — the more to condemn the Enlightenment for its unfulfilled promises, and then criticizes these scholars, too, for taking “the Enlightenment’s European origins for granted.”

Who, then, are the “many authors” who have discovered that the Enlightenment was a worldwide creation? This is the motivating question behind Conrad’s historiographical essay. He writes: “in recent years, however, the European claim to originality, to exclusive authorship of the Enlightenment, has been called into question.” He starts with a number of sources which have challenged “the image of non-Western societies as stagnating and immobile”; publications by Peter Gran on Egypt’s eighteenth century “cultural revival,” by Mark Elvin on China’s eighteenth century “trend towards seeing fewer dragons and miracles, not unlike the disenchantment that began to spread across Europe during the Enlightenment,” and by Joel Mokyr’s observation that “some developments that we associate with Europe’s Enlightenment resemble events in China remarkably.”

This is pure chicanery. First, Gran’s book, Islamic Roots of Capitalism: Egypt, 1760–1840 (1979) has little to do with Enlightenment, and much to do with the bare beginnings of modernization in Egypt, that is, the spread of monetary relations, the gradual appearance of “modern products,” the adoption of European naval and military technology, the cultivation of a bit of modern science and medicine, the introduction (finally) of Aristotelian inductive and deductive login into Islamic jurisprudence. Gran’s thesis is simply that Egyptians were not “passive” assimilators of Western ways, but did so within the framework of Egyptian beliefs and institutions (178–188). Mokyr’s essay “The Great Synergy: The European Enlightenment as a Factor in Modern Economic Growth,” argues the exact opposite as the cited phrase by Conrad would have us believe. Mokyr’s contribution to the rise of the West debate has been precisely that there was an “Industrial” Enlightenment in the eighteenth century, which should be seen as the “missing link” between the seventeenth century world of Galileo, Bacon, and Newton and the nineteenth century world of steam engines and factories. He emphasizes the rise of numerous societies in England, the creation of information networks between engineers, natural philosophers, and businessmen, the opening of artillery schools, mining schools, informal scientific societies, numerous micro-inventions that turned scientific insights into successful business propositions, including a wide range of institutional changes that affected economic behavior, resource allocation, savings, and investment. There was no such Enlightenment in China where an industrial revolution only started in the mid-twentieth century.

His citation of Elvin’s observation that the Chinese were seeing fewer dragons in the eighteenth century cannot be taken seriously, and neither can vague phrases about “strange parallels” between widely separated areas of the world. Without much analysis but through constant repetition of globalist phrases, Conrad cites works by Sanjay Subrahmanyam, Arif Dirlik, Victor Lieberman, and Jack Goody. None of these works have anything to say about the Enlightenment. Some of them simply argue that capitalist development was occurring in Asia prior to European colonization. Conrad deliberately confounds the Enlightenment with capitalism, globalization, or modernization. He makes reference to a section in Jack Goody’s book, The Theft of History (2006: 122), with the subheading “Cultural similarities in east and west,” but this section is about (broad) similarities in family patterns, culinary practices, culture of flowers, and commodity exchanges in the major post-Bronze Age societies of Eurasia. There is not a single word about the Enlightenment! He cites Dirlik’s book, Global Modernity in the Age of Global Capitalism (2009), but this book is about globalization and not the Enlightenment.

Conrad’s historiographical study is a travesty intended to dissolve European specificity by way of sophomoric use of sources. He says that the Enlightenment was “the work of many authors in different parts of the world.” What he offers instead are incessant strings of similarly worded phrases in every paragraph about the “global context,” “the conditions of globality,” “cross-border circulations,” “structurally embedded in larger global contexts.” To be sure, these are required phrases in academic grant applications assessed by adjudicators who can’t distinguish enlightening thoughts from madrasa learning based on drill repetition and chanting.

A claim that there were similar Enlightenments around the world needs to come up with some authors and books comparable in their novelty and themes. The number of Enlightenment works during the eighteenth century numbered, roughly speaking, about one thousand five hundred.[7] Conrad does not come up with a single book from the rest of the world for the same period. Half way through his 20+ page paper he finally mentions a name from India, Tipu Sultan (1750–1799), the ruler of Mysore “who fashioned himself an enlightened monarch.” Conrad has very little to say about his thoughts. From Wikipedia one gets the impression that he was a reasonably good leader, who introduced a new calendar, new coinage, and seven new government departments, and made military innovations in the use of rocketry. But he was an imitator of the Europeans; as a young man he was instructed in military tactics by French officers in the employment of his father. This should be designated as dissemination, not invention.

Then Conrad mentions the slave revolt in Haiti led by Toussaint L’Ouverture, as an example of the “hybridization” of the Enlightenment. He says that Toussaint had been influenced by European critiques of colonialism, and that his “source of inspiration” also came from slaves who had “been born in Africa and came from diverse political, social and religious backgrounds.” Haitian slaves were presumably comparable to such enlightenment thinkers as Burke, Helvetius, D’Alembert, Galiani, Lessing, Burke, Gibbon, and Laplace. But no, the point is that Haitians made their own original contributions; they employed “religious practices such as voodoo [19] for the formation of revolutionary communities.” Strange parallels indeed!

He extends the period of the Enlightenment into the 1930s and 1940s hoping to find “vibrant and heated contestations of Enlightenment in the rest of the world.” He includes names from Japan, China, India, and the Ottoman Empire, but what all of them did was to simply introduce elements of the Enlightenment into their countries. He rehearses the view that these countries offered their own versions of modernity. Then he cites the following words from Liang Qichao, the most influential Chinese thinker at the beginning of the twentieth century, reflecting on his encounter with Western literature: “Books like I have never seen before dazzle my eyes. Ideas like I have never encountered before baffle my brain. It is like seeing the sun after being confined in a dark room.” Without noticing that these words refute his argument that Asians we co-participants of the Enlightenment, Conrad recklessly takes these words as proof that “the Enlightenment of the eighteenth century was not the intellectual monopoly of Europeans.” It does not occur to him that after the eighteenth century Europe moved beyond the Enlightenment exhibiting a dizzying display of intellectual, artistic, and scientific movements: romanticism, impressionism, surrealism, positivism, Marxism, existentialism, relativism, phenomenology, nationalism, fascism, feminism, realism, and countless other isms.

In the last paragraphs, as if aware that his argument was a charade, Conrad writes that “an assessment of the Enlightenment in global history should not be concerned with origins, either geographically or temporarily.” The study of origins, one of the central concerns of the historical profession, is thusly dismissed in one sentence. Perhaps he means that the “capitalist integration of the globe in an age of imperialism” precludes seeing any autonomous origins in any area of the world. World historians, apparently, have solved the problem of origins across all epochs and regions: it always the global context. But why it is that Europe almost always happens to be the progenitor of cultural novelties? One unfortunate result of this effort to see Enlightenments everywhere is the devaluation of the actual Enlightenment. If there were Enlightenment everywhere why should students pay any special attention to Europe’s great thinkers? It should come as no surprise that students are coming out with PhDs incapable of making distinctions between high and average achievements.

Alan Macfarlane, Professor Emeritus of King’s College, Cambridge, and longtime proponent of the idea that it was in western Europe between the thirteenth to eighteenth centuries that the “Nuclear Family based on Romantic Love, the Renaissance, Capitalism, the Scientific Revolution and the Industrial Revolution complex emerged,” has recently [20] observed that current efforts to explain Western uniqueness in global terms should be seen as responses to the rise of East Asia and its challenge to Western hegemony. The rise of the West, in light of this momentous rearrangement in geopolitical power, no longer seems so unusual, a “miracle,” but a phenomenon of short duration copied by other nations set to become the new hegemons. Macfarlane thinks it is important to reveal this background condition, and thereby disallow it from interfering with the actual historical record. Asia is rising today, but the West did so first in a very distinctive way.

This perspective strikes me as overtly academic and soft in its assessment of the underlying intentions driving the globalist historians. Macfarlane is a learned man who came of age in an England [21] long gone and suffering a huge ethnic alteration. The way this alteration was imposed, who and for what purposes, should be the background from which to evaluate this global perspective. The originality of the Enlightenment stands like an irritating thorn in the march towards equality and European nations inhabited by rootless cosmopolitan citizens without ethnic and nationalist roots. The achievements of Europeans must be erased from memory, replaced by a new history in which every racial group feels equally validated inside the Western world. In the meantime, the rise of Asians as Asians continues unabated and celebrated in Western academia.

Notes

1. “Capitalist Origins, the Advent of Modernity, and Coherent Explanation,” Canadian Journal of Sociology, 33, 1 (2008).

2. When I asked an American history teacher about The College Board, he replied: “The Board has a monopoly on the entire AP curriculum all across America and Canada and the rest of the world that buys into the program, i.e., ‘American schools’ anywhere and everywhere. And yes it is totally Marxist and it sickens me whenever the students have to regurgitate this totally one-sided perspective on the tests. Because the AP tests are based on the official curriculum, each AP World teacher must submit their syllabus to the board for approval. If the board does not approve, the school does not have the right to offer the test and the class is nullified. They have a tight grip on everything that goes on in the classroom, therefore. The trainings are something out of one of those university diversity trainings: anti-Western to the tilt. When they talk about European accomplishments, they do it tongue-in-cheek.”

3. For a thorough assessment of the pedagogical character of recent world history texts, which also covers world or universal historians from ancient times, see the 800-page survey by David Tamm, Universal History and the Telos of Human Progress (University of Antarctica Press, 2012). Tamm is an MA graduate aware that pursuing a PhD is virtually impossible if one rejects multiculturalism and mass immigration. He has founded his own virtual university in Antarctica with a publishing house.

A Wisconsin Policy Institute Research Report published in 2002, “Evaluating World History Texts in Wisconsin Public High Schools,” by Paul Kengor, made the following observations: “they avoid ethnocentrism, Euro-centrism, and so-called “Ameri-centrism;” “there are also multicultural excesses at the expense of the West;” “they include no section on the United States…Adams, Jefferson, Madison, Washington, Hamilton, and Lincoln are not mentioned even once;” “the most commonly named individuals in the texts are Mohammed, Gandhi, and Gorbachev;” “nearly all note the aggressive actions of Christianity in the distant past.” See: http://www.wpri.org/Reports/Volume15/Vol15no4.pdf [22]

4. Writing about Western Civ texts from a globalist approach has been building up since the 1990s; in this article published in 1998, Michael Doyle [23] asks teachers of Western Civ “to continue to incorporate a more inclusive approach to all cultures with which it [the West] came into contact.” “Certainly Western Civ students should read parts of the Qur’an and understand the attitudes that produced Fanon’s The Wretched of the Earth.” He refers to Eric Hobsbawm’s [24] widely read books on European history as a model to be followed.

5. Designating Trevor-Roper’s History and the Enlightenment as a “standard” account seems out of place. Trevor-Roper died in 2003; and when his book was published, which consisted mainly of old essays, reviewers seemed more interested in Trevor-Roper the person than the authority on the Enlightenment. The New Republic [25] (March 2011) review barely touches is views on the Enlightenment, concentrating on Trevor-Roper’s life-time achievements as a historian and a man of letters. The Washington Post [26] (June 2010) correctly notes that Trevor-Roper was an “essayist by inclination,” interested in the details and idiosyncrasies of the characters he wrote about, without postulating a unified vision. The Blackwell Companion to the Enlightenment is a reference source encompassing many subjects from philosophy to art history, from science to music, with numerous topics (not demonstrative of a unifying/dominant view) ranging from absolutism to universities and witchcraft, publishing, language, art, music and the theater, including several hundred biographical entries of diverse personalities. Better examples of a dominant discourse would have been Ernest Cassirer’s The Philosophy of the Enlightenment or Norman Hampson’s, The Enlightenment. Mind you, Cassirer’s book was published in the 1930s and Hampson’s survey in 1968, and neither one is now seen as “dominant.”

6. Emmanuel Chukwudi Eze, ed., Race and the Enlightenment: A Reader (1997).

7. This is an approximate number I came up after counting the compilation of primary works cited in The Cambridge History of Eighteenth Century Philosophy, Volume II, Ed. Knud Haakonssen, (2006), pp. 1237–93.

 


Article printed from Counter-Currents Publishing: http://www.counter-currents.com

URL to article: http://www.counter-currents.com/2013/04/enlightenment-and-global-history/

URLs in this post:

[1] Image: http://www.counter-currents.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/prometheus.jpg

[2] World History for Us All: http://worldhistoryforusall.sdsu.edu/

[3] surprisingly similar: http://press.princeton.edu/titles/6823.html

[4] locally contingent: http://www.cato-unbound.org/2009/11/04/jack-goldstone/how-an-engineering-culture-launched-modernity/

[5] Afroeurasia: http://worldhistoryconnected.press.illinois.edu/5.2/christian.html

[6] slavery: http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/03/30/king-cottons-long-shadow/?ref=opinion

[7] scientific: http://www.amazon.com/Eastern-Origins-Western-Civilisation/dp/0521547245

[8] admirers of the West: http://www.arktos.com/christmas-sale/roger-scruton-west-and-rest-globalisation-terrorism-threat.html

[9] American Historical Association: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LVaQIOPwFcA

[10] AP World History Standard: http://apcentral.collegeboard.com/apc/public/repository/AP_WorldHistoryCED_Effective_Fall_2011.pdf

[11] organizations: http://www.campusreform.org/

[12] World History Association: http://www.thewha.org/

[13] Journal of World History: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Journal_of_World_History

[14] World History Connected: http://worldhistoryconnected.press.illinois.edu/

[15] H-World network: http://www.h-net.org/~world/

[16] two percent: http://www.nas.org/images/documents/TheVanishingWest.pdf

[17] Pascal Bruckner: http://www.signandsight.com/features/1146.html

[18] same Kant: http://www.public.asu.edu/~jacquies/kant-observations.htm

[19] voodoo: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5KsVMHbLv5M

[20] recently: http://www.socanth.cam.ac.uk/2012/12/the-huxley-memorial-lecture-professor-alan-macfarlane-at-the-rai/

[21] England: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V3HpaC7mKEA

[22] http://www.wpri.org/Reports/Volume15/Vol15no4.pdf: http://www.wpri.org/Reports/Volume15/Vol15no4.pdf

[23] Michael Doyle: http://www.historians.org/perspectives/issues/1998/9805/9805TEC.CFM

[24] Eric Hobsbawm’s: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2211961/Eric-Hobsbawm-He-hated-Britain-excused-Stalins-genocide-But-traitor-too.html

[25] The New Republic: http://www.newrepublic.com/article/books-and-arts/magazine/84508/hugh-trevor-roper-oxford-review

[26] Washington Post: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/06/23/AR2010062305093.html

JEAN THIRIART, EL LENIN DE LA REVOLUCIÓN EUROPEA

JEAN THIRIART,

 

EL LENIN DE LA

 

REVOLUCIÓN EUROPEA

 

por René Pellissier

Ex: http://alternativaeuropeaasociasioncultural.wordpress.com/

Articulo aparecido en Le Partisan Européenne, número 9 enero 1987, y publicado en “La Nazione Europea”. Febrero 2005

thiriart.jpgCofundador del Comité d’Action de Défense des Belges à l’Áfrique (CADBA), constituído en julio de 1960, inmediatamente después de las violaciones de Leopoldvlile y de Thysville, de las que fueron víctmas los belgas de Congo y cofundador del Mouvement d’Action Civique que sucedió al CADBA, el belga JeanThiriart, en diciembre de 1960, lanzó la organización Jeune Europe, que durante varios meses será el principal sostén logístico y base de retaguardia de la OAS-Metro.
Hasta aquí, parecería nada más que la trayectoria, en definitiva, clásica de un personaje de la derecha más extrema.
No ostante, los partisanos europeos deben mucho a Thiriart – y lo que le deben no permite ciertamente clasificarle de... ¡“extrema-derecha”! Le deben la denuncia de la “impostura llamada Occidente” (es el título de un editorial de Jean Thiriart en la publicación mensual “La Nation Européenne”, nº 3, 15 marzo/15 abril 1966 (1) y la denuncia de los siniestros payasos que son sus defensores, desde Henri Massis a Ronald Reagan; la designación de los Estados Unidos como el principal enemigo de Europa (Thiriart añadió desde 1966, el sionismo – la revista “Conscience Européenne” que tomaba como referente a Thiriart, titulaba su número 7 (abril de 1984): “Imperialismo americano, sionismo: un solo enemigo para la Nación Europea”) Le deben la idea de una Europa independiente y unida de Dublín a Bucarest, después de Dublín a Vladivostok (2) y la idea de una alianza con los nacionalistas árabes y los revolucionarios del Tercer Mundo. Le deben por fin, el esbozo, con la organización Jeune Europe, de un Partido Revolucionario europeo, que se inspira en los principios leninistas y la versión modernizada de un socialismo que quiere ser nacional (Nación europea), comunitario y “prusiano”.

El recorrido de Thiriart y la influencias ideológicas que ha sufrido, no hacen de él, a priori, un personaje de extrema derecha. Nacido en Lieja en una familia liberal, que tenía una estrecha simpatía por la izquierda, Thiriart milita en la Jeune Garde socialista y en la Unión Socialista antifascista. Después durante la guerra colabora con el Fichte Bund, organización de inspiración nacionalbolchevique, dirigida desde Hamburgo por el doctor Kessemaier. Al mismo tiempo es miembro de la AGRA (Amigos del Gran Reich Alemán), que agrupaba en Bélgica a los elementos de extrema izquierda favorables a la colaboración europea y a las anexiones al Reich. En los años 40, el corpus doctrinal thiriarista está ya cimentado. Desde esta época, se le puede clasificar como de revolucionario y europeo.
Solo particulares circunstancias políticas (independencia del Congo, secesión de Kananga, cuestión argelina, problema rhodesiano, etc.) le llevan en los años 1960 a 1965 a abrazar, provisionalmente, las tesis de la extrema derecha. Se empeña, de hecho, en la lucha por el Congo belga (después, el Katanga de Moise Chombé), por la Argelia francesa y Rodhesia; porque le parece que a Europa económica y estratégicamente le es necesario el control de África. Thiriart es un firme defensor de Euráfrica. Más aun, Thiriart lleva el apoyo de Jeune Europe a la OAS, porque una Francia-OAS le parece el trampolín ideal para la auspiciada Revolución europea.

JE_EUR~1.JPG

Pero entre 1964 y 1965, Thiriart se separa de la extrema derecha, de la cual rechaza en bloque: el pequeño nacionalismo, el anticomunismo intransigente, la sumisión a los intereses capitalistas, el atlantismo, el prosionismo y –particularmente entre los franceses – el racismo antiárabe y el espíritu de cruzada contra el Islam. Resultando fallida la experiencia de la OAS (dividida, pusilánime, sin ideología revolucionaria o un programa político coherente), Thiriart vuelve sus esperanzas, primero sobre el gaullismo (1966), después intenta obtener el apoyo chino (a través de Ceaucescu se encuentra con Chu en Lai en Bucarest) y por fin, el apoyo árabe.

Su empeño revolucionario y su pragmatismo le llevan, después de haber combatido por el Congo belga y la Argelia francesa, a auspiciar la alianza Europa-Tercer Mundo (3) Thiriart, a pesar de todo, no ha renegado de sus planteamientos; su proyecto sigue siendo el mismo: la unidad e independencia de Europa. Su lucidez le permite distinguir tanto en las guerras coloniales, como en las luchas políticas que se han sucedido, al mismo enemigo de Europa: los Estados Unidos, que en una época armaban y apoyaban las revueltas contra las colonias europeas para sustituir a los colonizadores europeos y que hoy apoyan masivamente el sionismo, cuya agitación belicista y “antirracista” en Europa (racista en Israel, el sionismo es antirracista en el resto del mundo) amenaza la supervivencia misma de Europa.

En 1969, desilusionado por el relativo fracaso de Jeune Europe y por la timidez de los apoyos externos, Jean Thiriart renuncia provisionalmente a la lucha. Pero en los años 70-80, su influencia, la mayoría de las veces indirecta, se deja sentir en el ala radical (neo-fascista) de los movimientos de extrema-derecha, donde el ideal europeo se abre camino, sobre los grupos nacional revolucionarios y socialistas europeos que se inspiran a la vez en Evola, Thiriart y el maoísmo (4) (se trata en particular de la Organización Lotta di Popolo en Italia, Francia y España y, en gran medida, en sus correspondientes alemanes de Aktion Neue Rechte, tras Sache des Volkes, cfr. Orion nº 62) y por fin sobre la Nouvelle Droite (a partir del giro ideológico operado en los años 70-80 por la joven generación del GRECE, entorno a Guillaume Faye)
En 1981, Thiriart rompe el silencio que guardaba desde 1969 y anuncia la publicación de un libro: El Imperio eurosoviético de Vladivostok a Dublín. A esas alturas preconiza la unificación de Europa por parte del Ejército Rojo y bajo la guía de un Partido Comunista (euro)-soviético preventivamente desembarazado del chauvinismo panrruso y del dogmatismo marxista (5). Hoy Thiriart se define como un nacionalbolchevique europeo. Pero no ha hecho más que precisar y ajustar a la situación política actual los temas que defendía en los años 60. Al mismo tiempo, bajo el impulso de Luc Michel han visto la luz un Parti Communitariste Nacional-Européen y una revista: Conscience Européenne; que retoman lo esencial de las ideas de Thiriart.

Si se quiere, Thiriart ha sido el Lenin de la Revolución Europa, pero un Lenin que sigue esperando su octubre de 1917. Con la organización Jeune Europe intentó crear un Partido revolucionario europeo y de suscitar un movimiento de liberación a escala continental, en una época en la cual el orden de Yalta era contestado tanto en el Oeste por De Gaulle, como en el Este por Ceaucescu y por los diversos nacionalcomunismos. Pero ese intento no se consiguió por la falta de serios apoyos externos y de un terreno favorable en el interior (o sea, una crisis política y económica que habría podido conseguir las masas disponibles para una acción revolucionaria a gran escala)
No es cierto que este apoyo y este terreno falten aun durante mucho tiempo. Es importante seguir ininterrumpidamente el camino trazado por Jean Thiriart. Esto es: difundir los conceptos thiriaristas y formar sobre el modelo de Jeune Europe, los cuadros de la Europa revolucionaria del mañana.

Notas:

(1) El tema antioccidental será retomado, cerca de quince años más tarde, por la Nouvelle Droite, en la revista Eléments (nº 34, "Pour en finir avec la civilisation occidentale" , abril/mayo 1980)

(2) La idea de la Gran Europa, de Dublín a Vladivostok, aparece tímidamente en los escritos de Jean Thiriart a principios de los años 60. El neo-derechista Pierre Vidal, defiende esta idea en el artículo titulado: “Objectif Sakhaline”, en Elements nº 39 verano 1981

(3) La alianza Europa-Tercer Mundo es objeto de un libro de Alain de Benoist, Más allá de Occidente. Europa-Tercer Mundo: la nueva alianza, La Rocía di Erec.

(4)Para muchos militantes nacional revolucionarios, la Libia del Coronel Ghadafi, así como la revolución islámica han reemplazado hoy a la China popular como modelo.

(5) En los años 60 Thiriart teorizaba sobre la formación de Brigadas Europeas, que tras haberse adiestrado en teatros de operaciones externos (Próximo Oriente y América Latina) regresarían a suelo europeo cuando se verificasen las condiciones políticas para una guerra de liberación. La dirección política de esta operación correspondería al Partido Revolucionario Europeo, preconfigurado por Jeune Europe. En los años 80, en el espíritu de Thiriart, el Ejército Rojo y el Partido Comunista de la Unión Soviética (PCUS) reemplazaron a las Brigadas Europeas y a Jeune Europe

samedi, 20 avril 2013

William Butler Yeats - Easter 1916 - Bob Geldof

William Butler Yeats - Easter 1916 - Bob Geldof

mardi, 16 avril 2013

El Ultimo José Antonio

Lyautey, ministre de la guerre

lyautey.jpg

Lyautey ministre de la Guerre

par Frédéric BARTEL

Ex: http://linformationnationaliste.hautetfort.com/

La plupart des biographes de Lyautey ont été en général fort sobres au sujet de son court passage au gouvernement en qualité de ministre de la Guerre. Peut-être ont-ils pensé que cet épisode, dont la durée n'a pas excédé onze semaines, de fin décembre 1916 à mi-mars 1917, n'offrait dans une existence par ailleurs si riche et si bien remplie qu'un médiocre intérêt. Ou bien, cette brève période d'une grande carrière ayant constitué en somme un échec, convenait-il de ne point s'y appesantir. Erreur. La réussite ou l'échec dans la vie d'un homme n'ont point de signification majeure : il y a des échecs qui grandissent et des réussites qui déshonorent. En l'espèce, l'éphémère participation de Lyautey à un gouvernement métropolitain à un moment critique de la guerre de 1914 est très riche d'enseignements et projette une nouvelle clarté sur les qualités essentielles qui, si les circonstances s'y fussent prêtées, eussent fait de Lyautey un merveilleux conducteur de peuple.


Premières déceptions


La fin de l'automne 1916 et le début de l'hiver qui suivit marquait dans le déroulement de la Première Guerre mondiale une sorte de point mort, une phase d'attente avant l'ouverture indécise d'un nouveau chapitre. Un cauchemar, celui de Verdun, avait été clos au prix de sacrifices et d'un effort intenses. Après cette flambée d'héroïsme et cette affreuse hémorragie, quelle direction nouvelle fallait-il imprimer à cette guerre qui durait, s'invétérait comme un mal chronique dont on ne pouvait concevoir la fin ?
Le pays s'inquiétait. Chantilly s'endormait dans la sérénité olympienne d'un petit univers bureaucratique et clos : Plutarque commençait à mentir. Lourd de ses vingt-trois membres, le gouvernement sous la direction fluente de Briand était divisé, mal informé, impuissant à imprimer à la guerre une impulsion efficace et des impératifs méthodiques. L'opinion publique voulait qu'on sortît de l'immobilisme, réclamait des initiatives, s'énervait : Clemenceau lui prêtait sa voix.


Après des débats houleux à la Chambre, Briand obtint la confiance traditionnelle, mais assortie d'une mise en demeure de remanier son ministère pour en faire un organisme d'action. Il fallait donc choisir un ministre de la Guerre qui, après l'interrègne falot du général Roques, eût le prestige et l'autorité d'un Galliéni, prestige d'autant plus nécessaire qu'on allait démanteler la citadelle de Chantilly en substituant à son omnipotence dans la conduite de la guerre celle d'un Comité de Guerre composé, à l'exemple britannique, des ministres des Affaires étrangères, de la Guerre, des Finances et de l'Armement (celui-là nouvellement institué) et qu'on envisageait la nomination en qualité de commandant des Armées du Nord et de l'Est d'un nouveau généralissime effectif, tout en laissant à Joffre son titre assorti de celui de conseiller technique militaire du gouvernement.


Deux grands coloniaux dans la période initiale de la guerre avaient conjuré le désastre : Joffre et Galliéni. On compléta la trinité des coloniaux en recourant à Lyautey, et malgré certaines hésitations, en dépit de quelque pressentiments peut-être, le constructeur du Maroc ne pouvait pas ne pas répondre à l'appel pressant qui lui était adressé.


Mais d'entrée de jeu, certains procédés le surprirent et le froissèrent. C'est ainsi qu'il apprit par l'Agence Havas, sans en avoir été au préalable averti, que le Département de la Guerre n'aurait désormais plus sous son contrôle la direction de l'armement et des fabrications de guerre ni celle des transports et du ravitaillement. « On m'offre un ministère amputé », télégraphiait-il de Rabat. Aussi réservait-il son acceptation définitive après examen sur place de sa véritable situation au sein du gouvernement.


À l'arrivée à Paris, nouvelle déception. L'amiral Lacaze, intérimaire, a déjà investi le général Nivelle des fonctions de généralissime à la tête des Armées du Nord et de l'Est. Lyautey fut très contrarié de n'avoir eu aucune part à la prise d'une telle décision. La résolution complémentaire de créer au profit de Joffre le poste de conseiller technique du gouvernement le choquait également. L'état-major de ce conseiller technique n'allait-il pas entrer en conflit avec celui du ministre, et ce dernier, au demeurant, n'était-il point, en fait, le véritable et naturel conseiller du Comité de Guerre ?


Avant même d'avoir pris le moindre contact rue Saint-Dominique, Lyautey s'installa chez lui rue Bonaparte passablement hérissé, décidé à n'entrer en fonctions que sous bénéfice d'inventaire. Il fallait à tout prix calmer, apprivoiser ce pur-sang qui n'admettait guère la longe et qui déjà se cabrait... Philippe Berthelot, envoyé en éclaireur par Briand, accourut pour porter les premiers apaisements. La logique persuasive et le prestige lorrain de Poincaré, la caressante et cordiale bonhomie de Briand firent le reste. Le gouvernement comptait sur la camaraderie coloniale nouée à Madagascar pour atténuer la mauvaise humeur de Joffre qui parlait de se retirer sous sa tente. Lyautey avec un tact parfait réussit à faire accepter au vainqueur de la Marne un « modus vivendi » honorable.


De son côté, Lyautey finit par acquiescer à la réduction des attributions naguère dévolues à son département en cédant au caractère impérieux des nécessités nouvelles qui commandaient la mise au jour de deux ministères supplémentaires, celui du Ravitaillement et des Transports confié à Herriot et celui de l'Armement assumé par Albert Thomas, avec de part et d'autre deux sous-secrétaires d’État, Claveille et Loucheur. Il comprit, en outre, que le rôle du ministre était d'administrer l'armée et de pourvoir à ses besoins avec l'assistance de ces deux organismes et que la conduite politique de la guerre relevait du gouvernement qui fixait ses buts, le généralissime étant affecté à la conduite technique des opérations. Il reconnut enfin qu'il n'avait aucune prévention personnelle à l'endroit de Nivelle et qu'il l'attendait à l'œuvre et tout d'abord à l'exposé de ses conceptions.


« On va sacrifier des milliers de personnes pour rien… »


En fait, dès le lendemain de ses entrevues avec Poincaré et Briand, Lyautey reçut, toujours rue Bonaparte, la visite de Nivelle qui venait prendre contact et lui remit un petit papier résumant l'économie de ses projets. Lyautey ne manifesta point d'opinion, mais, relate Wladimir d'Ormesson, auteur d'un « Auprès de Lyautey » (dont il avait été l'officier d'ordonnance au Maroc) paru en 1963 chez Flammarion, « après le départ du général Nivelle, il donna de multiples signes d'agacement, d'impatience. On sentait qu'entre le généralissime et lui "ça n'avait pas collé" ».


Le 1er février 1917, les choses devaient d'ailleurs se gâter quand le colonel Renouard, mandaté par le GQG, vint exposer au ministre, dans tous ses détails, le fameux plan Nivelle.


André Maurois avait déjà donné une version dramatique de l'entrevue de Lyautey avec cet officier qui avait travaillé sous ses ordres dans le Sud-Oranais. Figé dans l'attitude que lui imposait la mission dictée par son chef du moment, il ne répondait rien aux objurgations de Lyautey qui, bouleversé par la communication dont il venait de prendre connaissance, lui demandait d'homme à homme, sous le sceau du secret, quel était son sentiment sur le document entre ses mains : « Allons, voyons, mon petit Georges, regarde-moi droit dans les yeux... Remets-toi un instant dans la peau de l'officier d'ordonnance d'Aïn-Sefra et dis-moi la vérité... Que penses-tu de tout cela ? » Alors le colonel abandonna son masque et se mit à pleurer : « Mon général, dit-il tout bas, je pense comme vous... »


Le surlendemain de l'entrevue avec le colonel Renouard, dans le train qui menait le général et sa suite sur le front belge pour une visite auprès du roi, Lyautey se retrouve avec M. d'Ormesson, qui témoigne : « Son courrier fait, Lyautey se mit à tourner en rond dans l'étroit wagon comme un écureuil dans sa cage. Cela lui arrivait parfois et c'était toujours le signe d'une grande émotion. Tout d'un coup il éclata. Il était au bord de la crise de nerfs. Il me dit - parce qu'il avait besoin de parler, de s'extérioriser : « Vois-tu, mon petit, c'est affreux... Je suis sûr, sûr, sûr... Je le sens, je le sais. C'est du « Kriegspiel », cela ne tient pas debout, c'est insensé, je l'avais pressenti du premier jour. Mes conversations avec Nivelle ne faisaient que me confirmer dans mes craintes, maintenant il n'y a plus le moindre doute dans mon esprit. J'ai compris, je suis sûr, sûr, sûr que je ne me trompe pas... Avant même de savoir ce que je sais à présent, j'avais fait part de mes anxiétés à Poincaré, à Briand... Ils me répondent toujours la même chose : « Cela ne vous regarde pas... Vous n'êtes pas chargé des questions militaires... Vous n'avez pas la responsabilité... Au surplus vous venez du Maroc... Vous n'avez pas manié de grandes masses... Vous n'avez pas l'expérience qu'ont nécessairement acquise ceux qui ont commandé sur le Front de France... » C'est peut-être vrai d'ailleurs... Peut-être Nivelle a-t-il raison ? Voit-il juste ? Peut-être ai-je tort ? Et pourtant non, non, non, je suis sûr que mon instinct ne me trompe pas... Je n'en peux plus d'assister aussi impuissant, désarmé, absorbé par des besognes stupides ou sans importance quand j'ai la conviction qu'on va sacrifier des milliers de personnes pour rien ; quand j'ai la certitude que la guerre n'est pas menée sérieusement ; que ce n'est pas comme cela qu'il faut agir ; qu'on perd un temps précieux, que nous sommes au trentième mois de la guerre et que la France était déjà saignée à blanc… » Lyautey était en proie à une véritable crise de désespoir. Il ne pouvait plus se contenir. »


Qu'on nous pardonne cette longue citation mais elle est capitale. Lyautey avait vu juste. Son don d'intuition, son sens critique s'insurgeaient contre l'élucubration dans l'abstrait, fondée sur le mépris de l'ennemi et la surestimation des forces propres dont on dispose, d'un de ces stratèges à plan (et rata-plan), imbus d'une immense satisfaction d'eux-mêmes et d'une obstination correspondante qui les font s'engager dans l'erreur et, c'est le pire, en dépit du résultat désastreux qui en est le fruit, persistent à soutenir qu'eux seuls avaient raison et que les faits seuls en l'occasion avaient tort. De récents conflits ont montré que l'espèce de ces dangereux va-t-en-guerre n'est pas éteinte.


En dehors des conseils et des audiences, des visites de parlementaires venus l'entretenir de petites histoires de leurs circonscriptions, recommandations ou passe-droits à rétablir affectant leurs électeurs, de colloques avec des généraux peu perméables, Lyautey devait faire face à tout moment à de menus accrochages ou obstacles répétés qui l'accablaient.


Afin de discuter de la conduite des opérations, la Chambre voulait une fois de plus instituer une séance secrète. Lyautey insista près de Briand pour que le gouvernement s'y opposât. L'aviation était encore une arme à ses débuts ; on ne pouvait étaler son programme de création, les problèmes délicats s'y rapportant, devant six cents parlementaires sans risque d'indiscrétion. Des dirigeants allemands ne s'étaient-ils pas vantés auprès de certains neutres d'avoir en main les comptes-rendus complets des débats en comité secret très peu de temps après les séances ? Briand avait pour méthode de ne point s'opposer de front à ses ministres ; quitte à « attendre et voir » et à en faire ensuite à sa tête. Il se déclara d'accord avec Lyautey. Fort de cette assurance, celui-ci partit pour Londres où une importante conférence interalliée allait avoir lieu. Briand, qui devait en faire partie, se récusa au dernier moment en raison du climat politique orageux qu'il convenait, assurait-il, de surveiller de près.


À son retour de Londres, le 14 mars, Lyautey, se rendant au Quai d'Orsay, y apprit que Briand n'avait pu résister à la pression parlementaire et se trouvait forcé d'accepter le comité secret. Il s'inclina, mais, durant le déroulement des débats, resta muet pour marquer sa réprobation, laissant s'expliquer les officiers désignés en qualité de commissaires du gouvernement.


Il ne prit la parole qu'à la reprise de la séance publique. Mais, voulant démonter l'inopportunité d'une telle procédure, il déclara tout à trac au début de son discours que cette méthode fâcheuse « exposait la Défense nationale à des risques pleins de périls ». La suite est souvent racontée. Aussitôt tumulte indescriptible, concert d'interruptions, clameurs. Malgré les efforts de Deschanel qui tentait d'apaiser la tempête, Lyautey ne put continuer, gagna la sortie. Le soir même, il démissionnait. Briand, pendant l'algarade, était resté immobile à son banc sans intervenir. Le départ de Lyautey allait entraîner d'ailleurs la chute du cabinet tout entier.


M. d'Ormesson se demande à la fois comment Lyautey avait pu commettre une telle faute de tactique oratoire et pourquoi ce manque d'adresse avait entraîné un tollé aussi violent. Il est bien certain qu'enrobée dans le cours ou à la fin d'un discours par ailleurs plein de bon sens et de vues saines et justes, d'après le texte qui nous en a été conservé, et que la Chambre ne devait pas connaître, la phrase incriminée aurait peut-être soulevé des « mouvements divers » mais que, survenant en guise d'exorde alors que l'attention de l'auditoire n'était pas encore émoussée, mais au contraire toute tendue, elle cinglait de front l'amour-propre à vif de l'assemblée nerveuse. La vérité est qu'il y avait, dans les couloirs et sur les travées de la Chambre, un climat défavorable à l'endroit de Lyautey alors même qu'il avait su plaire aux parlementaires ayant eu directement affaire à lui.


Lyautey avait ramené du Maroc ses fidèles immédiats, militaires de métier, gens du monde mobilisés, agents de la Carrière, tous hommes jeunes, certains bien titrés dans l'armoriai et convaincus de son génie. Du côté de Lyautey, aucune mégalomanie, pas de trace d'auto-mysticisme le transformant à ses yeux propres en oint du seigneur appelé par un décret nominatif de la Providence à s'identifier à la France, mais simplement, en une passe difficile de son histoire, le désir simple et puissant de la servir de toute la force de son intelligence et de son expérience. Un Lorrain patriote, sans croix de Lorraine.


Malheureusement ni l'un ni les autres ne connaissaient les milieux parlementaires, leur susceptibilité touchant leurs privilèges et leur méfiance vis-à-vis d'un soldat prestigieux, mais considéré comme réactionnaire, entré dans leurs jeux par la bande.


« Je me meurs de la France »


Les quelques semaines passées par Lyautey au ministère ne furent pourtant pas inutiles. Il fit preuve de clairvoyance non seulement dans l'examen du plan Nivelle qu'il déplorait et dont il fut impuissant à empêcher l'exécution qui devait confirmer ses craintes, mais encore dans les conférences interalliées de Rome et de Londres où il plaida chaleureusement la réorganisation du commandement dans le sens d'une unité étroite et solidaire que Clemenceau un peu plus tard devait faire aboutir.


Les décisions primordiales dans la conduite de la guerre prises tour à tour par Painlevé et Clemenceau, Lyautey en traça le chemin. Ce fut dans ces deux ministères que le ministère Lyautey porta ses fruits. « Son échec, dit M. d'Ormesson dans une excellente formule, fut un effort prématuré. » Ajoutons : fécond et décisif.


Il n'y eut pourtant que le maréchal Pétain pour rendre pleinement justice à l'action de Lyautey durant son ministère. Ministre de la Guerre à son tour en 1934, le jour des obsèques nationales du maréchal Lyautey, le vainqueur de Verdun déclara : « Dans une claire notion des exigences de l'heure, Lyautey comprit tout de suite qu'il fallait aux armées alliées un chef suprême, faute de quoi les efforts les plus héroïques resteraient vains et dispersés. C'est à la propagation de cette idée, à la réalisation de la concentration nécessaire des volontés et des moyens qu'il se consacra tout entier. Pour cela, il s'efforça de réunir dans ses mains, comme il l'avait toujours fait, toutes les ressources, toutes les forces, toutes les responsabilités. »


Après cette expérience avortée, en dépit des efforts de quelques semaines durant lesquelles l'imagination constructive et réaliste de Lyautey s'était heurtée à un bloc infranchissable, le retour au Maroc fut pour lui celui d'un prince exilé qui retrouve son royaume. Loin des contraintes et des résistances occultes ou déclarées, le chef respirait à nouveau, s'épanouissait à l'aise dans un cadre qui était le sien car il l'avait formé.


Cependant, il resta désormais dans l'âme de Lyautey une blessure secrète. Un ressort était atteint, qui ne fut jamais entièrement retendu. Introduit pour la première fois au sein d'un gouvernement dans une époque dramatique, Lyautey s'était cru capable, confiant en sa "baraka", de réaliser un haut dessein, s'il était appelé un jour à tenir la barre : la visée de redresser la destinée de son pays qu'il sentait depuis longtemps pleine de périls et d'incertitudes. Idée exempte chez lui de tout appétit de pouvoir pour le pouvoir, unique goût de rénover et de construire. Victime des circonstances et des hommes, il avait dû à jamais cesser de caresser la chimère d'une telle entreprise. Il en conçut une amertume qui le poursuivait sans cesse pendant sa vieillesse. Il n'avait pu donner sa mesure sur un théâtre plus vaste que celui du Maroc. Il n'avait plus foi en son étoile.


« J'ai raté ma vie », répétait-il souvent. Aveu poignant, injustifié, chez cet homme comblé d'honneurs, le dernier des grands proconsuls à l'apogée de notre Empire. Dans ces années 1930 qui marquèrent à la fois la fin de l'après-guerre de 14-18 et où commença l'avant-guerre de 1940-1944, voyant grandir la montée des périls, il ajoutait : « Je me meurs de la France. » Il mourut le 27 juillet 1934.


« Mon pays me fait mal », devait aussi dire dans sa prison, dix ans plus tard, et à la veille d'être fusillé, pressentant les horreurs en cours et à venir de la Libération, un jeune écrivain ardent et noble que Lyautey, s'il avait tenu un tel sort entre ses mains, n'aurait jamais fait mourir.


C'est une des mélancolies de l'histoire que d'y voir surgir des hommes comme Lyautey marqués pour un grand destin de conducteur ou de réformateur et qui n'ont pu l'accomplir parce qu'ils sont venus trop tôt ou trop tard, enfin pas au moment.


Frédéric BARTEL. Écrits de Paris décembre 2010

vendredi, 12 avril 2013

Fiume

lundi, 08 avril 2013

The Revolutionary Lessons of Michael Collins

MIchael_Collins_LI.jpg

The Rising:
The Revolutionary Lessons of Michael Collins

By Gregory Hood

Ex: http://www.counter-currents.com/

Michael Collins is a must see for any revolutionary, especially those who feel all hope is lost. The film begins with defeat for the revolutionaries, and the survivors hiding like rats in underground tunnels. By the end, they are dictating policy in councils of state. For a White Nationalist, the rise of the eponymous hero is consistently inspiring.

But there is also the fall. Michael Collins shows the pretty rivalries, greed, and political miscalculations that can destroy any movement from within. This is not a paean to militancy for militancy’s sake. It is a warning of the costs of violence and the inevitability of betrayal. Perhaps more importantly, it shows how the end of a friendship can lead to the collapse of a state. It’s a graduate course in nationalist revolution.

It should be noted that we’ll look at this film mostly on its own terms, ignoring some of the historical errors. Chief among them is the horrifically unfair treatment of Éamon de Valera, easily the dominant Irish political figure of the 20th century. While these errors detract from the film, they do not destroy the film’s importance nor the lessons it has to teach us.

Lesson 1 – The Blood Sacrifice Establishes the State

Michael Collins begins [3] with the Easter Rising of 1916. A sweeping panoramic of a scene of battle eventually ends on the General Post Office [4] in Dublin, where Michael Collins (Liam Neeson) and the other Irish Volunteers are utterly outmatched by British soldiers using artillery. They surrender and are marched out, in uniform, by business-like British officers who contemptuously refer to the uprising as a “farce.”

Of course, in real life it was a farce, and far from popular among the Irish people. Many Irish had relatives fighting in the British Army during World War I, and the feeling of many in the Empire was that the Rising was a unforgivable stab in the back while Great Britain was fighting for its life on the battlefields of Europe. In some areas, Irish civilians physically fought with the Volunteers, and some were even killed. In actuality, it was a rather pathetic spectacle, with a tinpot army marching about in uniforms while their own nominal leader (Eoin MacNeill [5]) tried to stop it.

None of this matters. The British, quite justifiably from their point of view, made the decision to execute the leaders of the rebellion. We see Éamon de Valera (Alan Rickman) writing a letter to Michael Collins while the now legendary figures of Connelly, Pearse, and Clarke are executed one by one in the background. De Valera is spared because he is an American citizen and writes to Collins, “The Irish Republic is a dream no longer. It is daily sealed by the lifeblood of those who proclaimed it. And every one of us they shoot brings more people to our side.”

Michael O’Meara writes in “Cú Chulainn in the GPO” in Toward the White Republic [6] that the violent birth of the Irish Republic was no accident. It the living out of a myth [7], a “noble Ireland won by violent, resolute, virile action” inspired by “millenarian Catholicism (with its martyrs), ancient pagan myth (with its heroes), and a spirit of redemptive violence (couched in every recess of Irish culture)” (p. 55).

The “slaughtered sheep” would brighten “the sacramental flame of their spirit.” O’Meara concludes that the sacrifice was not just for Ireland, but for a spiritual rebirth that would justify the Irish nation’s renewed existence, “for the sake of redeeming, in themselves, something of the old Aryo-Gaelic ways” (p. 59).

Once the sacred blood of revolutionaries was spilled, the Irish Republic became real, though it possessed no currency, territory, or international recognition. The policies enacted by the Irish Republic headed by de Valera became the political expression of the Irish nation, rather than a mummer’s farce of self-important and deluded men. The blood of fallen patriots made it real, the reaction of the British Empire granted it recognition, and the support of the Irish people followed in the wake of martyrdom. By losing, the Irish Volunteers won, for as Pearse said, “To refuse to fight would have been to lose. We have kept faith with the past, and handed down a tradition to the future” (p. 59).

Or, as de Valera put it in the film, “And from the day of our release, Michael, we must act as if the Republic is a fact. We defeat the British Empire by ignoring it.”

In the American experience, there are already proto-nationalist “governments” and states in exile. Harold Covington’s “Northwest American Republic [8],” the “Southern National Congress,” and the League of the South, and innumerable other would-be Founding Fathers make claims to be the political expression of various peoples. However, without the blood sacrifice, and the “recognition” granted by the military repression and extreme political reaction, such movements remain in the realm of myth [9].

Of course, that is where all nationalist movements have to begin.

Lesson 2 – The Transfer of Legitimacy Is Mental Before It is Political

In the American context, there’s a tiresome emphasis on individual “freedom,” which has become an all but meaningless phrase. In response, one should remember the admonition of Italian nationalist leader Giuseppe Garibaldi, that “Without Country you have neither name, token, voice, nor rights, no admission as brothers into the fellowship of the Peoples. You are the bastards of Humanity. Soldiers without a banner, Israelites among the nations, you will find neither faith nor protection; none will be sureties for you. Do not beguile yourselves with the hope of emancipation from unjust social conditions if you do not first conquer a Country for yourselves.”

Michael Collins believes something similar. As an organizer addressing a restive crowd soon after his release from prison, his theme is not that the British are “unfair” or that the Irish need “equality.” He tells the people that the Irish nation already exists, though it’s legitimate leaders are rotting in English jails. “I was in one myself till a week ago,” he jokes.

He continues [10], “They can jail us, they can shoot us, they can even conscript us. They can use us as cannon fodder in the Somme. But, but! We have a weapon, more powerful than any in the arsenal of their British Empire. And that our weapon is our refusal. Our refusal to bow to any order but our own, any institution but our own.”

Here, Collins skillfully draws the distinction between the institutions of “their” Empire and contrasts it with the legitimate institutions that “we” can build – and bow to. More importantly, pointing aggressively at the “our friends at the Royal Irish Constabulary,” he identifies the people who want to “shut me up” and challenges the Irish people to raise their voices if he is cut down.

This speech pays dividends when Ned Broy (Stephen Rea), a detective working for The Castle (the center of British power in Ireland), warns Collins that the entire cabinet of the Irish Republic is to be arrested. Broy (a composite of the real Ned Broy [11]and other characters) justifies his decision on the grounds that Collins can be “persuasive . . . what was it you said, our only weapon is our refusal.” The Irish Broy (whose name is repeatedly mispronounced by his English superiors) has transferred his loyalty from the state that pays his salary, to the new state that serves as the political expression of his people. This is the “revolution in the hearts and minds of the people” (to use John Adams’s phrase) necessary for any nationalist movement to succeed. It is also the outgrowth of de Valera’s entire strategy of building a parallel system of state.

Lesson 3 – Power Trumps Legalism

Michael-Collins-image-1.jpgUnfortunately, when we see the legitimate political expression of the Irish people in action, it is not impressive. The Cabinet of the Irish Republic is meeting in a tunnel. Dressed in suits and ties and carrying briefcases, they seem unlikely revolutionaries, squabbling over the extent of each minister’s “brief” and constantly pulling rank on one another.

Michael Collins and his sidekick Harry Boland (Aidan Quinn) are in, but not of this bureaucracy. Collins contemptuously dismisses a colleague’s charge that he is simply Minister for Intelligence by saying he’s the Minister for “Gunrunning, Daylight Robbery, and General Mayhem.” Interestingly, de Valera smiles wryly at this.

Collins reveals that the entire Cabinet is to be arrested but Éamon de Valera sees this as an opportunity, not a danger. As President of the Irish Republic, he orders everyone to sleep at home – if they are all arrested “the public outcry will be deafening.” Of course, when de Valera is arrested, he’s dragged into a truck yelling futilely about an “illegal arrest by an illegal force of occupation” – a strange claim from a revolutionary leader. Significantly, Collins and Boland disobey their “chief,” escape capture, and make plans to accelerate their program of guerrilla warfare.

Earlier, we saw Collins leading an attack on an arsenal to capture weapons. He tells his guerrillas that they will be organized in “flying columns” and engage the enemy on nobody’s terms but their own. The resource conscious Collins warns them each gun must be expected to capture ten more. At the same time, he imposes a core of discipline typical of a standard army.

This dual approach parallels his approach to the state. He recognizes the legitimacy of “his” government, the Irish Republic. His ultimate loyalty is to his “chief,” Éamon de Valera. At the same time, Collins recognizes that a revolutionary army – and government – has to impose costs on its adversary if it is to be effective. To “ignore” the British Empire is enough when it comes to the personal transfer of loyalty necessary for national liberation. However, to actually break the control of the system, there has to be concrete action.

This means breaking the “rules” that normal states obey. A national liberation army will use the “uniform of the man in the street,” the guerrillas will attack and fade away when necessary, and the chain of command must occasionally be violated for tactical reasons.

Lesson 4 – Intelligence Determines the Fate of Insurgencies

Early in the film, Collins is told that British Intelligence “knows what we [had] for breakfast.” In response, he says, “There’s only one way to beat them then. Find out what they had for breakfast.” In order to test whether he can trust Broy, he asks for admittance to The Castle so he can check the files the enemy possess about the Irish liberation movement. He’s stunned at the extent of what they know and comments to Broy, “You could squash us in a week.”

Nationalists and dissenters sometimes look to asymmetrical warfare as an invincible tactic for defeating the system. In reality, it is the weapon of the weak, and the price of weakness is that you most often lose. A powerful system can infiltrate, subvert, and destroy revolutionary organizations through legal pressure on individuals, financial enticements to informers, and well trained double agents. It’s no coincidence that the quasi-government Southern Poverty Law Center openly styles itself as a secret police force with an “Intelligence Report” used to destroy the personal lives of people they don’t like.

Lacking financial resources and functioning bureaucracies, a revolutionary group has to rely on the iron character of its members, and while this sounds idealistic and proud, the hard reality is that no group in history has been free of human weakness. As Americans learned in Iraq and Afghanistan during successful counter-insurgency operations, even groups that think they are fighting for God are capable of being corrupted. Any revolutionary movement can be penetrated, and once it is penetrated, it is easily destroyed.

Collins is aware of this, and comments to his men, “Any of ye who have read Irish history know that movements like ours have always been destroyed by paid spies and informers.” However, “without [informers], the Brits would have no system, they couldn’t move.” In response to this reality, there is only one thing to do. Cigarette hanging out of his mouth like a gangster, he dictates a letter. “To whom it may concern: This is to inform you that any further collaboration with the forces of occupation will be punishable by death. You have been warned. Signed, the Irish Republican Army.”

Here, Michael Collins establishes a strategic objective. “Now imagine Dublin with The Castle like an enclave, where anyone, and I mean anyone who collaborated knew he’d be shot. They wouldn’t be able to move outside those fucking walls.” We have only to look at the American experience in Iraq guarding informers or the Mexican struggle against narco guerrillas (where the police cover their faces out of fear) to know that nothing has changed.

The one advantage a nationalist revolutionary has is that he knows the terrain better than the people he is fighting. If both sides are fully dependent for intelligence on their own resources, without the benefit of paid informers, the nationalists are going to win. After all, they are fighting amidst their own people.

One thing Michael Collins exploits throughout the entire film is that no one (other than Broy) knows what he looks like. This is remarkably unlikely in the film, seeing as how Collins is so bold as to go up and talk to various policeman. Furthermore, for our purposes, this is hardly a realistic strategy in the age of street cameras, social networking, and ubiquitous smart-phones and video.

Nonetheless, revolutionaries don’t have to make it easy for the enemy’s intelligence gathering efforts – so maybe you should take a second look at what you’ve put on your Facebook profile.

Lesson 5 – Make the Political Disagreement a Personal Cost

Collins sets up the “12 Apostles” who systematically murder collaborators and secret policemen. These are men, after all, who are just doing their job to protect the established system. The film takes care to show that some of them are churchgoers and prayerful men, hardly moral monsters. Nonetheless, they must die.

Collins makes his political struggle very personal. Earlier, an outraged policeman shouts at a captured IRA member that he won’t give in to their demands. “What, give up our jobs, and miss out on all the fun?” In response, the IRA member spits back, “Or face the music.”

In this context, obviously this means violence. However, this lesson also applies in “normal” politics.

Certainly white advocates know, often with bitter personal experience, the costs of standing for your beliefs. Though these costs can be exaggerated, jobs, “friends,” and even family have been known to turn on white advocates once they are “outed” or targeted for extermination by the powers that be. A huge number of would-be white advocates are simply too intimidated by the social or financial costs to engage in racial or Traditionalist activism, and so instead they engage in harmless distractions (like libertarianism or Republicanism) or simply drop out altogether.

However, Leftists have also paid the price for political activity on occasion following campaigns by their political opponents. Few political activists – of whatever opinion – can survive in the midst of a personal campaign against them. Even in normal bourgeois politics, we are familiar with the term “throwing someone under the bus.”

A winning political movement increases the costs of association with an opposing political movement. This is all Michael Collins really does – an informer or collaborator has to consider for the first time whether the benefit of payment outweighs the possible cost of violent death. As the spiritual momentum is on the Irish nationalist side, Collins has changed the entire momentum of the conflict.

There’s a word to describe an effort by one group to break the will of another. That word is war – and politics is simply war by the other means.

Thus, Collins freely admits that he “hates” the British. He hates them not because of their race or religion, but because there is no other way. “I hate them for making hate necessary.”

Lesson 6 – Weakness is worse than cruelty; symbolism must be backed by power

While Michael Collins and Harry Boland are waging their guerrilla war, Éamon de Valera is rotting in an English jail. However, he manages to sneak out a copy of the key, and Collins and Boland manage to rescue their chief. Éamon de Valera is seen in a mass rally in Dublin, while the British police stare at him powerless. However, de Valera repeats his earlier mistake and decides that he wants to go to America to seek recognition from the American President. Perhaps more importantly, he takes Harry Boland with him.

It is left to Michael Collins to continue the war, which escalates when the arrival of MI5 Operative Soames (Charles Dance aka Tywin Lannister). Soames suspects Broy, possibly because the latter is constantly correcting his superior as to the proper pronunciation of his Irish name. He catches Broy in the act and has him killed, but is killed himself when Collins launches the assassinations of November 21, 1920 (Bloody Sunday).

When de Valera returns to Ireland having failed to secure diplomatic recognition, he begins a bureaucratic offensive against Collins. He orders the IRA to abandon guerrilla tactics because it allows the British press to call them “murderers.” Instead, he wants large-scale engagements, such as an attack on the Customs House. The attack leads to devastating losses among Republican forces (though the movie neglects to show its positive propaganda effects). Not surprisingly, Collins sneers at the “heroic ethic of failure” of 1916. There is no need for a further blood sacrifice – the British must be brought to their knees “they only way they know how.”

Saul Alinsky wrote in Rules for Radicals that the concern with means and ends varies inversely with one’s proximity to the conflict. Or, as Michael Collins protests to de Valera, “War is murder! Sheer, bloody murder! Had you been here you’d know that!” The attack on the Customs House almost breaks the IRA, and Collins believes that the rebellion is within days of being destroyed in the aftermath.

Éamon de Valera is conscious of his own dignity and the dignity of the Irish Republic as a “legitimate” government. It is not surprising that he favors tactics typical of a “normal” state. However, a revolutionary state is by definition not “normal.” Concessions are won not with fair play and appeals to common principles, but with force. In international relations, little has changed since Thucydides – “the strong do what they can and the weak suffer what they must.” Paradoxically, the Irish Republican (or any revolutionary state) can only be brought into existence by methods that can be characterized as “illegitimate.”

Lesson 7 – The head of a revolutionary movement must participate in, if not command, the war effort

Éamon de Valera was no coward, having participated in the Easter Rising of 1916. However, throughout the film, de Valera shows a curious inability to recognize what is actually happening on the ground. He sees no problem in taking Michael Collins’s most trusted lieutenant Harry Boland at a critical moment in the guerrilla struggle for what is essentially a public relations mission. His attack on the Customs House is launched despite the blunt warning of Michael Collins that it will lead to disaster.

It’s suggested that most of this is motivated by de Valera’s jealousy of Collins and his desire to eliminate a political rival. When Collins and Boland break de Valera out of prison, there is a brief moment of comradely laughter before the chief mentions unpleasantly that he can see the two of them are having a good time because he “reads the papers.” When he returns from America, he is picked up by one of Collins’s aides who tells him “the Big Fella (Collins) sends his regards.” Éamon de Valera spits back, “We’ll see who is the big fella.”

The film strains to present Éamon de Valera as selfish, perhaps even evil, but most of his actions are more than justified from a political perspective. Irish independence is, after all, dependent on negotiations with the British, and there is a strong case to be made that they will not negotiate with people they consider to just be savage murderers. Furthermore, American pressure on Britain in the midst of World War I would have been an invaluable asset to the Irish diplomatic effort. Finally, as President of the Irish Republic, de Valera would be insane to allow a powerful rival with military backing emerge as a separate power center within the government. Removing Boland is a potent political step – as Collins himself recognizes. “We were too dangerous together,” he muses to Boland when the break is beyond healing.

blood-upon-the-rose.jpgThe problem is that all of this political maneuvering should be secondary to his primary role of leading a military effort. Though de Valera is obviously commander in chief, he has little connection to actual military operations throughout the film. This is at least a partial explanation for his stunning strategic incompetence.

Throughout the film, there is a fatal separation between the head of the state, the development of strategy, and the execution of a guerrilla war. Éamon de Valera bears heavy responsibility for this because of his disastrous choice to abandon the field for America. This dereliction of duty ultimately forced Collins to take almost sole command of the war for independence, despite his personal loyalty to his President. Éamon de Valera had to act as he did in order to maintain his political leadership, but his ceding of military leadership had catastrophic consequences. If he had stayed in Ireland, none of his political maneuvering would have been necessary.

In a revolutionary movement, there can be no separation between the so-called “civilian” and military leadership. It is a thinly veiled fiction in our democracies anyway. The conflict between Michael Collins and Éamon de Valera was inevitable once the President of the Irish Republic saw his role as being a political leader, rather than a military “chief.”

Lesson 8 – The nationalist myth cannot be undone by pragmatism – even if the myth is becoming destructive

The final section of the movie focuses of the Irish Civil War. Michael Collins brings back the Anglo-Irish Treaty, which creates the Irish Free State, not the Irish Republic. The two most controversial elements of the treaty are an oath of allegiance to the British Crown and the partition of Northern Ireland.

The reunion between Michael Collins and his former sidekick Harry Boland is hardly joyful. Collins appears embarrassed as Boland asks him in horror, “Mick, is this true?”

Collins quickly turns his wrath on Éamon de Valera. “It was the best anyone could have got. And more important Dev knew it. He wanted somebody else to bring back the bad news.” Éamon de Valera for his part screams at Collins, “You published the terms without my agreement!” Collins challenges de Valera to stand by the treaty if the Irish people stand by it; de Valera is silent.

Instead, we see Éamon de Valera giving a passionate speech in front of a giant Irish tricolor. “This treaty bars the way to the Republic with the blood of fellow Irishmen! And if it is only through civil war that we can get our independence then so be it!”

When the debate takes place in the Dail, one of Collins’s political opponents charges, “When the people of Ireland elected us to represent the Republic, did they think we were liars. . . . Mr. Collins would have us take an oath of allegiance to a foreign king.” Collins wins narrow approval through his reputation and his plea to “save the country” from “a war none of us can even contemplate.” Nonetheless, Éamon de Valera refuses to accept the treaty, saying it can “only subvert the Republic” and continues his opposition even after the treaty is ratified by a referendum of the Irish people.

When the Irish Volunteers began their rebellion against the Treaty in the Irish Civil War, Collins is outraged when he is told that Churchill is offering the Irish Free State artillery. “Let Churchill do his own dirty work!” he rages. An aide responds, “Maybe he will Michael, maybe he will.” Collins has to put down the rebellion or risk the British seizing control. In uniform, with all the power of a modern state behind him, a disgusted Collins orders the artillery bombardment of a rebel stronghold. The opening scene is now reversed, with Michael Collins in the position of the British bombing the heroes of Easter 1916.

When Harry Boland is killed, Collins reacts with rage against the boy who shot him. “You killed him, you little uniformed git. You plugged him, you little Free State gobshite. You were meant to protect him!” Instead of the picture of Michael Collins we are familiar with, proud and dignified in his Free State uniform, Collins is disgusted with himself. After all, he is bombing his former comrades with weapons provided by the British Empire, in order to preserve a state nominally pledged to service of a foreign king.

Michael Collins was ultimately right that the Irish Free State was simply a “stepping stone to the ultimate freedom” for most of Ireland. Given the IRA’s weak military situation by the end of the war, the Irish Free State probably was, as Collins claimed, “the best anyone could have got.” As Collins’s supporters in the Dail pointed out, nowhere in the exchange of letters that preceded negotiations was the recognition of the Irish Republic made as a demand. Given that the Irish would gain a government of their own that they could use to “achieve whatever they wanted,” it does seem foolish to go to war “over the form of words.”

However, revolutions have a terrible logic all their own. The heroic myth of the nation rising to self-consciousness through the sacrament of the blood sacrifice is impervious to pragmatic considerations. Why did the Irish suffer and die if only to end up as subjects to the British Crown? How can any Irish patriot wear the uniform of a government that fires on Irishmen with British supplied weapons?

When Éamon de Valera and his deputies leave the hall, Collins screams, “Traitors! Traitors all!” But traitors to whom? Even Michael Collins seems to despise the uniform he wears. Nonetheless, he has made the (in my judgment, correct) rational decision that the Irish Free State is the best hope of achieving the national aspirations of the Irish people and that patriots owe it their allegiance. But myths are impervious to reason. The romantic impulses that can launch a revolution can also destroy it, if not controlled.

Saul Alinsky writes in Rules for Radicals that organizers must be masters of “political schizophrenia.” They must sincerely believe in what they are doing, if only to give them the strength of will to carry forward in difficult times. However, they should never become a “true believer” in the sense of fully internalizing their own propaganda. The point of politics is to achieve concrete ends, not simply to remain true to a dream.

The Myth of nationalist (and racial) redemption is True in some platonic sense. That doesn’t mean it has to be a suicide pact. Revolutionaries have to be willing to die for the dream, but idealism does not exempt them from the laws of political reality.

Lesson 9 – Revolutionary moments create opportunities that are lost in time, but they should be seized incrementally

While Collins was ultimately correct about the short-lived nature of even nominal British control over the Free State, the division of the North was fatal to hopes of a united Ireland. To this day, Ireland remains split, and the British flag flies over Ulster despite decades of revolutionary agitation and violent resistance.

Part of this has to do with the utter corruption of the Irish nationalist movement in the decades after his death. So called Irish nationalists like Sinn Fein have been reduced to arguing that the Republic desperately needs more black immigrants. In the centuries-long struggle between Catholics and Protestants, the winners might be the Nigerians.

There’s also the more substantial question as to whether Ulster Protestants under the Red Hand constitute a separate people, rather than simply existing as an outgrowth of British colonialism. Irish sovereignty over Ulster could be interpreted simply as another form of occupation.

However, from the viewpoint of contemporary Irish nationalists, the acquiescence to division of the country has to be seen as a disaster. The revolutionary momentum of the Free State period was ultimately lost as people reconciled themselves with the status quo of division. If a united Ireland was held to be truly non-negotiable, it had to have been accomplished within only a few years of the formation of the state. Instead, the status quo provides a fatal opening for “moderates” and “realists” to sell out the long term dream of unity for smaller political advantages.

In fairness, Michael Collins never fully reconciled himself to the division of Ireland. At the time of his death, he was planning a new offensive [12] in the North, this time with the backing of state power. Again, to turn to Alinsky, this is the proper course of action given political realities. Revolutionaries should always be ready to accept incremental gains, but should also continue moving the goal posts until they reach their ends. Certainly, the Left has been a master of this over the last century, as each new concession simply fuels the demand for more surrender by conservatives.

Revolutionaries should take what they can get – but never concede that the struggle is finished until they can get all of it. The tragedy for Irish nationalists is that the more “extreme” anti-Treaty partisans may have destroyed the hope of a united Ireland by killing Michael Collins. Michael Collins’s approach may have been more complicated and less ideologically satisfying, but ultimately more likely to succeed.

Lesson 10 – Draft the People

James Mason writes in Siege that white revolutionaries must see all white people as their “army.” The fact that they do not support us now is irrelevant – eventually, they will be drafted.

The IRA’s assassination campaign imposes great costs on the Irish people as a whole. The arrival of the auxiliaries and the Black & Tans unquestionably made life more difficult for ordinary people. The murder of the Cairo Gang led the British to strike back in a wild frenzy at an Irish football game, leading to the deaths of many ordinary people who had nothing to do with the political struggle. In the film, Collins rages at the brutality of the British. In practice, this is deeply dishonest. It’s only to be expected that the IRA’s campaign would lead to greater repression of the Irish people.

Easter_Rising_1916_Irish_Soldiers.JPG

Terrorism and violent resistance may make life more difficult for the people you are trying to represent. This is not an unfortunate side effect – it is an intended reaction. Revolutionary movements should seek to expose the repression inherent in the system by refusing to let the authorities hide behind half measures. More importantly, a successful revolutionary campaign forces everyone in the country to take a side. It removes neutrality as an option. As the system can only maintain control by imposing greater costs upon the population, a revolutionary campaign that makes life worse for the people may have the paradoxical effect of garnering greater popular support.

As a revolutionary, you are taking upon yourself the responsibility of “dragging the people into the process of making history,” to use Dugin’s phrase. This requires a stern code of personal responsibility so as to live up to this mission. It also necessitates a willingness to pay a personal price. However, the most important quality revolutionaries have to possess is the moral courage to accept that you will be the cause of suffering among your own people. And when the time comes, like Michael Collins, you must do what is necessary to end that suffering.

Lesson 11 – Impose shared sacrifice and experiences among the leadership

It is no use calling for “unity” among the political leadership of revolutionary movements. By definition, anyone who is attracted to a revolutionary movement is going to be ideologically nonconformist and willing to risk all for the sake of principle. You put a group of these people in a room and they are going to fight about something eventually.

However, Michael Collins gives a different interpretation to the eventual break between Harry Boland and Michael Collins. Boland is in love with Kitty (Julia Roberts) but she wants to be with Collins. The growth of the relationship between Kitty and Collins moves in tandem with the collapse of the friendship between Boland and Collins. Though Collins continues to pledge his friendship to Boland, it is easy to understand Boland’s wrath at a man who essentially stole his girlfriend. Within the context of the film, the ideological differences between Boland and Collins seem like after the fact justifications for a rivalry based in petty personal conflict.

That said, there’s a deeper lesson to seen if the romantic triangle is interpreted as just a metaphor. Boland, Collins, and de Valera are politically and personally united when they share common experiences and common struggles. When de Valera is being spirited away from British raid to flee to America, Collins tells him, “Remember one thing over there. You’re my chief – always.” It’s only after Éamon de Valera returns from America that conflicts become truly serious. Éamon de Valera is no longer a “chief” but a politician. There is a host of separate experiences now separating Collins and his President.

The break between Boland and Collins follows a similar pattern. When Boland is Collins’s fellow guerrilla, they are inseparable. Despite the romantic tensions between the triangle, Kitty, Boland, and Collins are able to coexist in easy intimacy. However, when Boland and Collins develop separate institutional roles, the personal tension elevates into political rivalries and eventually, opposing camps in the government.

Revolutionary movements have to impose a common body of experience on all members insofar as it is possible. Different perspectives, backgrounds, and skills are all valuable and useful but not if they lead to division. At the risk of sounding like a sensitivity trainer, everyone involved in the movement should have a healthy respect for the circumstances and difficulties that all of them are facing in their different roles.

Conclusion

Several years ago, I recall that a white advocacy group fliers with pictures of Michael Collins in his Irish Free State uniform. Our sophisticated media and the well trained population immediately interpreted this as a picture of a “Nazi” in uniform, and there was the usual hysteria. This depressing anecdote shows that despite our information saturation, we live in a remarkably uninformed age. Even the millions of Americans of Irish descent have only the most distant knowledge of the Emerald Isle’s long struggle for independence.

White revolutionaries do not have the luxury of ignorance. If the battle for a white ethnostate is to follow the lines of an anti-colonial struggle, the Irish independence movement is the closest thing that we have to a modern model. The period of the Irish Free State and the Civil War shows not only how a successful movement can triumph, but how it can also destroy itself.

REMFUTUREeasterrising.jpg

Michael Collins is a good beginning for any white revolutionary seeking to define the struggle. The quest for an ethnostate is not a struggle for “freedom” or some silly abstraction, but an order of our own and institutions of our own that will allow us to achieve what we desire as a people. To achieve this requires the power of Myth, the tactics of soldiers, and the skill of politicians. This Easter, commemorate the Rising by watching Michael Collins and absorbing its lessons. Then with more research into this movement and others, prepare for the Rising to come.


Article printed from Counter-Currents Publishing: http://www.counter-currents.com

URL to article: http://www.counter-currents.com/2013/03/the-rising-the-revolutionary-lessons-of-michael-collins/

URLs in this post:

[1] Image: http://www.counter-currents.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/michaelcollinsposter.jpg

[2] Image: http://www.counter-currents.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/michaelcollins.jpg

[3] begins: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Aq7bcY9tuao

[4] General Post Office: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/General_Post_Office_(Dublin)

[5] Eoin MacNeill: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eoin_MacNeill#Revolutionary

[6] Toward the White Republic: http://www.counter-currents.com/toward-the-white-republic/

[7] myth: http://www.counter-currents.com/2010/06/cu-chulainn-in-the-gpo/

[8] Northwest American Republic: http://www.counter-currents.com/2010/11/the-northwest-novels-of-h-a-covington/

[9] myth: http://www.counter-currents.com/2010/09/the-myth-of-our-rebirth/

[10] continues: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vl11gInexsA

[11] Ned Broy : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ned_Broy

[12] offensive: http://books.google.com/books?id=xscRAhBt2JgC&pg=PA397&lpg=PA397&dq=then+we+can+resume+in+the+north+michael+collins&source=bl&ots=8q51pboR5N&sig=AmuQIGaW6sMGy6gzjRSqHfViUW8&hl=en&sa=X&ei=vXdXUeiyAYL69QT3loGgDw&ved=0CEwQ6AEwAw#v=onepage&q=then%20we%20can%20resume%20in%20the%20north%20michael%20collins&f=false

samedi, 06 avril 2013

Le mir

 
Le mirLe mir
 

Le mir est une institution organique russe qui, depuis les premières tribus slaves jusqu’aux derniers élans soviets, a maintenu une tradition radicalement démocratique sur ses terres. Il est le pendant économique et social du vétché. Il signifie à la fois « commune », « paix » et « monde ».

Le mir est une structure autonome fondée sur la possession collective de la terre, l’obchtchina, et le partage auto-administré des produits du travail commun de ses membres. Cette commune agraire arbore un régime démocratique sous sa forme la plus simple et directe, sans représentation, où chacun prend part à toutes les délibérations et décisions. Régulièrement, dans chaque village ou canton (pouvant rassembler jusqu’à 30 villages), l’ensemble des paysans librement associés avaient la liberté de traiter eux-mêmes leurs affaires. La terre, divisée en lots égaux, était partagée par tirage au sort entre les individus capables de la travailler et tous les autres sur la base des bouches à nourrir. Tous les produits étaient alors mis en commun assurant ainsi le bien public dans toute la communauté.

Présenté de la sorte sur le papier, le mir semble quelque peu bucolique. La réalité était bien plus tumultueuse, voire séditieuse ! Lisons cette description explicite extraite du magistral « L’Empire des tsars et des russes » d’Anatole Leroy-Beaulieu :

La première chose qui frappe celui qui assiste pour la première fois à l’une de ces réunions est l’extrême confusion qui semble y régner ; de président point ; d’ordre dans les débats aucun. La discussion est caractérisée par des scènes de tumulte. Celui qui a convoqué l’assemblée expose les motifs de cette convocation. Aussitôt après chacun se rue dans la mêlée ; toutes les opinions s’expriment à la fois ; on dirait par moment un combat à coups de poings. Pour avoir la parole il faut savoir la prendre et la garder. Si l’orateur plaît, l’auditoire se charge d’imposer silence aux interrupteurs. Si ce qu’il dit n’a pas d’importance, on ne s’occupe pas de lui et le premier venu peut le faire taire. S’agit-il d’une question brûlante qui échauffe toute une assemblée, tous pérorent en même temps personne n’écoute. Fort souvent on se sépare en petits groupes qui continuent à discuter chacun de leur côté et pour leur compte ; Tout le monde vocifère ; de part et d’autre on crie, on s’insulte, on s’accable réciproquement de sarcasmes, on se défie ; c’est un tumulte indescriptible qui semble ne produire aucun bon résultat.

Cependant, cette apparente confusion est sans portée. C’est une nécessité indispensable pour arriver au but voulu. Dans nos assemblées de village le scrutin est inconnu ; aucune décision ne peut être prise à la majorité des voix. Toutes les questions se règlent à l’unanimité. Il en résulte que la discussion générale ou particulière se poursuit jusqu’à ce qu’on émette une proposition qui concilie autant que possible tous les intérêts et rallie les suffrages de tout le mir. Il est évident qu’en vue d’aboutir à cette issue chaque sujet est débattu à fond et bien épluché, et il est clair que pour triompher d’une opposition isolée, les orateurs qui défendent des opinions contradictoires doivent être mis en présence face à face et ne peuvent vider leur querelle que par un combat singulier.

L’assemblée ne contraint pas la minorité à accepter des résolutions auxquelles celle-ci ne consent pas. Chacun est obligé de faire des concessions pour le bien commun et pour la paix et la prospérité de la communauté. La majorité ne tire aucun avantage de sa supériorité numérique. Le mir n’est pas un maître. »

Sans être un maître il demeura néanmoins une autorité suprême qui perdurera même sous le joug mongol puis le servage moscovite. Les envahisseurs comme les oligarques s’épargnaient ainsi la gestion des affaires agraires… Mais cette relative autonomie fut accordée au prix de lourds impôts.

Ainsi, malgré les empiétements du pouvoir mongol puis tsariste, le mir a offert sur les terres des paysans une certaine harmonie. Par ailleurs ce potentiel plus démocratique que révolutionnaire a longtemps prémuni le pays à la fois contre la création d’un prolétariat misérable et l’incursion de la corruption occidentale.

Aussi, de nombreux intellectuels en ont fait l’éloge tout en s’en inspirant comme base d’un renouveau social : du Baron Westphalien à Kropotkine en passant par August von Haxtausen, Alexandre Herzen, Tchernychevsky, Bakounine, Lavrov, Mikhailovsky, et même…Marx ! Ce dernier s’en fera en effet un temps partisan, il l’a écrit noir sur blanc à Vera Zassoulitch :

L’actuelle propriété collective pourra servir comme point de départ pour une évolution communiste. Cette commune rurale est le point d’appui de la régénération sociale en Russie, mais afin qu’elle puisse fonctionner comme tel, il faudrait d’abord éliminer les influences délétères qui l’assaillent de tous côtés et ensuite lui assurer les conditions normales d’un développement spontané. »

Mais comme souvent avec les propos messianiques, quand ils sont mal interprétés ils peuvent vite engendrer le pire… Ainsi les marxistes considéraient le mir comme un reliquat de l’époque féodale qui devait laisser sa place à l’exploitation capitaliste agraire, favorisant dès lors l’avènement d’un …prolétariat rural ! Cette méconnaissance, voire ce déni, doublé d’une hostilité du monde paysan russe, engendra sa « solution finale » par l’extermination de millions de ses membres par les armes, la déportation ou la famine organisée, durant la guerre civile et la collectivisation forcée des années 1929-1934.

Cédric Bernelas

Rivarol und die Französische Revolution

Rivarol.jpg16.04.2013
19:30
Salon des Institut français
Mainz

Rivarol und die Französische Revolution

Der Übersetzer Ulrich Kunzmann liest aus ›Vom Menschen‹; die Historikerin Lisa Klewitz (Universität Mainz) hält anschließend einen Vortrag.
 
Ulrich Kunzmann, der bekannte Übersetzer romanischer Autoren, liest am 16. April im Salon des Schönborner Hofes (Institut Français) aus ›Vom Menschen‹ von Antoine de Rivarol. Darin greift Kunzmann, der den Band auch herausgegeben hat, auf die veröffentlichten Werke des großen Sprachkünstlers und Revolutionskritikers Rivarols zurück, die er gesammelt und pointiert ins Deutsche übersetzt hat.
Die Historikerin Lisa Klewitz wird uns im Anschluss an die Lesung einen Einblick in den historischen Kontext geben. Die Stipendiatin der Sibylle-Kalkhof-Rose-Stiftung hat als Forschungs- und Interessengebiet einerseits die Geschichte Frankreichs in der Frühen Neuzeit und andererseits das Rheinland unter der französischen Herrschaft.

Eine Veranstaltung des Institut français Mainz und des Historischen Seminars der Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz ›Gegen den Strom‹
 
Veranstaltungsort:
Schillerstraße 11, 55116 Mainz

Antoine de Rivarol

Bücher zu dieser Veranstaltung

Antoine de Rivarol
Antoine de Rivarol: Vom Menschen

vendredi, 05 avril 2013

The Expulsion Of The Germans

The Expulsion Of The Germans: The Largest Forced Migration In History  

Ex: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/

expu000000.jpgIn December 1944 Winston Churchill announced to a startled House of Commons that the Allies had decided to carry out the largest forced population transfer -- or what is nowadays referred to as "ethnic cleansing" -- in human history.

Millions of civilians living in the eastern German provinces that were to be turned over to Poland after the war were to be driven out and deposited among the ruins of the former Reich, to fend for themselves as best they could. The Prime Minister did not mince words. What was planned, he forthrightly declared, was "the total expulsion of the Germans... For expulsion is the method which, so far as we have been able to see, will be the most satisfactory and lasting."

The Prime Minister's revelation alarmed some commentators, who recalled that only eighteen months previously his government had pledged: "Let it be quite clearly understood and proclaimed all over the world that we British will never seek to take vengeance by wholesale mass reprisals against the general body of the German people."

In the United States, senators demanded to know when the Atlantic Charter, a statement of Anglo-American war aims that affirmed the two countries' opposition to "territorial changes that do not accord with the freely expressed wishes of the people concerned" had been repealed. George Orwell, denouncing Churchill's proposal as an "enormous crime," took comfort in the reflection that so extreme a policy "cannot actually be carried through, though it might be started, with confusion, suffering and the sowing of irreconcilable hatreds as the result."

Orwell greatly underestimated both the determination and the ambition of the Allied leaders' plans. What neither he nor anybody else knew was that in addition to the displacement of the 7-8 million Germans of the East, Churchill, U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt and Soviet leader Joseph Stalin had already agreed to a similar "orderly and humane" deportation of the more than 3 million German-speakers -- the "Sudeten Germans" -- from their homelands in Czechoslovakia. They would soon add the half-million ethnic Germans of Hungary to the list.

Although the governments of Yugoslavia and Romania were never given permission by the Big Three to deport their German minorities, both would take advantage of the situation to drive them out also.

By mid-1945, not merely the largest forced migration but probably the largest single movement of population in human history was under way, an operation that continued for the next five years. Between 12 and 14 million civilians, the overwhelming majority of them women, children and the elderly, were driven out of their homes or, if they had already fled the advancing Red Army in the last days of the war, forcibly prevented from returning to them.

From the beginning, this mass displacement was accomplished largely by state-sponsored violence and terror. In Poland and Czechoslovakia, hundreds of thousands of detainees were herded into camps -- often, like Auschwitz I or Theresienstadt, former Nazi concentration camps kept in operation for years after the war and put to a new purpose.

expulses.jpgThe regime for prisoners in many of these facilities was brutal, as Red Cross officials recorded, with beatings, rapes of female inmates, gruelling forced labour and starvation diets of 500-800 calories the order of the day. In violation of rarely-applied rules exempting the young from detention, children routinely were incarcerated, either alongside their parents or in designated children's camps. As the British Embassy in Belgrade reported in 1946, conditions for Germans "seem well down to Dachau standards."

Though the death rates in the camps were often frighteningly high -- 2,227 inmates of the Mysłowice facility in southern Poland alone perished in the last ten months of 1945 -- most of the mortality associated with the expulsions occurred outside them.

Forced marches in which inhabitants of entire villages were cleared at fifteen minutes' notice and driven at rifle-point to the nearest border, accounted for many losses. So did train transports that sometimes took weeks to reach their destination, with up to 80 expellees crammed into each cattle car without adequate (or, occasionally, any) food, water or heating.

The deaths continued on arrival in Germany itself. Declared ineligible by the Allied authorities to receive any form of international relief and lacking accommodation in a country devastated by bombing, expellees in many cases spent their first months or years living rough in fields, goods wagons or railway platforms.

Malnutrition, hypothermia and disease took their toll, especially among the very old and very young. Although more research is needed to establish the total number of deaths, conservative estimates suggest that some 500,000 people lost their lives as a result of the operation.

Not only was the treatment of the expellees in defiance of the principles for which the Second World War had professedly been fought, it created numerous and persistent legal complications. At the Nuremberg trials, for example, the Allies were trying the surviving Nazi leaders on charges of carrying out "deportation and other inhumane acts" against civilian populations at the same moment as, less than a hundred miles away, they were engaging in large-scale forced removals of their own.

Similar problems arose with the UN's 1948 Genocide Convention, the first draft of which outlawed the "forced and systematic exile of individuals representing the culture of a group." This provision was deleted from the final version at the insistence of the U.S. delegate, who pointed out that it "might be interpreted as embracing forced transfers of minority groups such as have already been carried out by members of the United Nations."

To the present day, expelling states continue to go to great lengths to exclude the deportations and their continuing effects from the reach of international law. In October 2009, for example, the current President of the Czech Republic, Václav Klaus, refused to sign the European Union's Lisbon Treaty unless his country was granted an "exemption" ensuring that surviving expellees could not use the Treaty to seek redress for their maltreatment in the European courts. Facing the collapse of the accord in the event of Czech non-ratification, the EU reluctantly acquiesced.

To this day, the postwar expulsions -- the scale and lethality of which vastly exceed the ethnic cleansing that accompanied the break-up in the 1990s of the former Yugoslavia -- remain little known outside Germany itself. (Even there, a 2002 survey found that Germans under thirty had a more accurate knowledge of Ethiopia than of the areas of Europe from which their grandparents were deported.)

The textbooks on modern German and modern European history I use regularly in my college classroom either omit mention of the expulsions altogether, or relegate them to a couple of uninformative, and frequently inaccurate, lines depicting them as the inevitable consequence of Germany's wartime atrocities. In popular discourse, on the rare occasions that the expulsions are mentioned at all it is common to dismiss them with the observation that the expellees were "got what they deserved," or that the interest of the expelling states in unburdening themselves of a potentially disloyal minority population should take precedence over the deportees' right to remain in the lands of their birth.

Superficially persuasive as these arguments may appear, they do not stand up to scrutiny. The expellees were deported not after individual trial and conviction for acts of wartime collaboration -- something of which the children could not have been guilty in any event -- but because their indiscriminate removal served the interests of the Great Powers and the expelling states alike.

Provisions to exempt proven "anti-fascists" from detention or transfer were routinely ignored by the very governments that adopted them; Oskar Schindler, the most famous "anti-fascist" of all who had been born in the Czech town of Svitavy, was deprived by the Prague authorities of nationality and property like the rest.

The proposition, moreover, that it is legitimate in some circumstances to declare in respect of entire populations that considerations of human rights are simply not to apply is an exceedingly dangerous one. Once the principle that certain specially disfavoured groups may be treated in this way is admitted, it is hard to see why it should not be applied to others. Scholars including Andrew Bell-Fialkoff, John Mearsheimer and Michael Mann have already pointed to the expulsion of the Germans as an encouraging precedent for the organization of similar forced migrations in the former Yugoslavia, the Middle East and elsewhere.

The history of the postwar expulsions, though, shows that there is no such thing as an "orderly and humane" transfer of populations: violence, cruelty and injustice are intrinsic to the process. As the former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, who fled Nazi-occupied Czechoslovakia as a small child, has correctly noted: "Collective punishments, such as forced expulsions, are usually rationalized on the grounds of security but almost always fall most heavily on the defenseless and weak."

It is important to bear in mind that no valid comparison may be drawn between the expulsion of the Germans and the far greater atrocities for which Nazi Germany was responsible. Suggestions to the contrary -- including those made by expellees themselves -- are both offensive and historically illiterate.

Nonetheless, as the historian B.B. Sullivan has observed in another context, "greater evil does not absolve lesser evil." The postwar expulsions were by any measure one of the most significant occurrences of the mass violation of human rights in recent history. Their demographic, economic, cultural and political effects continue to cast a long and baleful shadow across the European continent. Yet their importance remains unacknowledged, and many vital aspects of their history have not been adequately studied.

Nearly seventy years after the end of the Second World War, as the last surviving expellees are passing from the scene, the time has come for this tragic and destructive episode to receive the attention it deserves, so that the lessons it teaches may not be lost and the unnecessary suffering it engendered may not be repeated.

Orderly & Humane

expD.jpg

Orderly & Humane:
The Expulsion of the Germans After the Second World War

 

R. M. Douglas
Orderly and Humane: The Expulsion of the Germans after the Second World War
New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 2012

After reading a book or two and watching a few hours of TV documentaries on the couch, most smugly imagine that they know something of World War II. Most, of course, know nothing. What most think about WWII is what the winners want them to think about WWII; we call it the victor’s version of history. That version is a rather neat and tidy account, a clean and pleasing morality play of heroes and villains, of good versus evil, of catchy and easy to remember phrases like “Crusade in Europe,” the “Good War,” the “Greatest Generation,” “Nazi butchers,” “Hitler, the Evil Madman,” “Six Million,” etc. That black and white version paints the losers as all-evil, all-vicious, all-enslaving, all-everything bad and it paints the winners as all-good, all-suffering, all-liberating, all-noble, all-virtuous. But then, I’m wasting time on things most of you already know.

World War Two was man’s greatest cataclysm. Nothing else comes close. Tens of millions died, tens of millions were raped, tens of millions were enslaved, tens of millions were uprooted and cast to the wind, and the thing that Western man loves more than life itself—his freedom—was taken. With the fall of Germany and its allies in the spring of 1945, the forces of darkness stood gloating and triumphant. The last significant opposition to their grand designs on the West had been crushed, and now they went to work dividing the spoils and sucking the last drop of blood from the vanquished. One might imagine that from such an earth-shaking, epochal event every facet would have by now been studied down to the last detail by the world’s historians and academics, but one would imagine wrong. Precisely because the war was won by the forces of hate and evil, only one half of the story has ever been told and that, of course, is the side the winners chose to tell us.

Slowly, slowly, after nearly 70 years, the details from what it looked like down there in the grave where the losers lay are beginning to surface. And what is being revealed is a crime so monstrous, so enormous, and so hideous in its length and breadth that words have not yet been invented to describe it. So vicious and persistent was the anti-German propaganda, and so deep and pervasive was the consequent hatred for everything German both during and after the war, that this nearly successful attempt to extirpate the German people was committed with hardly a stir from the “civilized world.” So utterly demonized were the Germans by the largely Jewish press around the world that virtually anything could be said about Germany, virtually any crime could be committed against its helpless population, and none would raise a hand or offer a word against it. The evidence of crimes committed and the criminals who committed them have always been there. The horrifying accounts have remained in various archives and journals gathering nearly 70 years of dust but except for an intrepid few no historians have mustered the courage to reveal these dark secrets to the world.

In addition to deliberate attempts to kill every man, woman, and child in Germany by the Allied air forces with their terror bombing and “targets of opportunity” campaign (red crosses on hospital roofs were especial targets), a similar slaughter was taking place below as the invading hordes of the Soviet Union raped and/or murdered virtually every German that fell into their hands. On the Baltic Sea, a similar slaughter was taking place as Allied submarines and bombers sank every refugee ship they could find, killing tens of thousands of helpless women, children, the sick, and the elderly.

After the war, when the so-called peace was declared, millions of German POWs were herded into muddy outdoor fields where they remained without food, water, shelter, or medical treatment. Although there was plenty of food available, and although rivers often ran just beyond the barbed wire, Supreme Allied Commander, Dwight. D. Eisenhower, was determined to kill as many of the defeated as he could before world reaction stepped in to stop the slaughter.

“God, I hate the German,” hissed the future American president.

In other parts of defeated Germany, hell on earth was unleashed when Jewish émigrés and those released from concentration camps, with Allied bayonets to back them, rounded up German soldiers and civilians, men and women, then placed them in their own Jewish-run death camps. In addition to suffering some of the most sadistic and sickening tortures the mind can conjure, hundreds of thousands of these Germans were simply beaten to death, drowned, or buried alive.

vertreibung.jpg

One of the most heartless and deadly crimes committed against helpless Germans was the forced removal from their homes. Orderly and Humane—The Expulsion of the Germans After the Second World War by R. M. Douglas seeks to shed light on this little known aspect of World War II history. The story is a tragic one. First, some seven million Germans living in the eastern provinces of the Reich–Prussia, Pomerania, Silesia–were violently uprooted by land-hungry and vengeful Poles and ordered to leave, sometimes with only a few minutes’ notice. Then, several million more, many whose families had lived for centuries in Hungary, Czechoslovakia, and other central European nations were expelled by their envious and blood-thirsty neighbors. It is estimated that of the 12 to 14 million Germans cast to the wind, as many as two million perished. Many were slaughtered in hideous ways; others succumbed to the elements. In spite of Allied assurances to the world that the removal of these pathetic refugees was carried out in an “orderly and humane” manner, their lies were soon shown to be mere Orwellian double-speak.

I wanted to like this book. I wanted to welcome Professor Douglas into the world of truth-seekers. I wanted to praise both his bravery and honesty as well as his careful scholarship. But after only a short spin through the book, I discovered that I could not. From the outset, Douglas–a card-carrying court historian–wants to make it perfectly clear to his academic peers and the Jewish media watchdogs who stand in his career path with suspicious eyes and folded arms, that he has the “right stuff”; that this project is merely a scholarly study to understand post-war politics and European population dynamics and not an attempt to enlist sympathy for the Germans themselves; for the thousands of brained German babies, for the tens of thousands of murdered German men, for the hundreds of thousands of raped German women.

“It is appropriate at the outset,” sniffs Douglas in his intro, “to state explicitly that no legitimate comparison can be drawn between the postwar expulsions and the appalling record of German offenses against Jews and other innocent victims between 1939 and 1945. The extent of Nazi criminality and barbarity in central and eastern Europe is on a scale and of a degree that is almost impossible to overstate. In the entire span of human history, nothing can be found to surpass it, nor . . . to equal it. Germany’s neighbors suffered most grievously and unjustifiably at her hands, and were profoundly traumatized as a result. Whatever occurred after the war cannot possibly be equated to the atrocities perpetrated by Germans during it, and suggestions to the contrary—including those made by expellees themselves—are both deeply offensive and historically illiterate. Nothing I have written in the book should be taken to suggest otherwise.”

With that nifty bit of genuflecting, with his kosher credentials seemingly intact, Douglas no doubt imagines that he will hence be given a life-long pass to enter the happy halls of historians. As this groveling academic will find out soon enough, a Christian writing about “controversial” Christian subjects will never crawl fast enough or far enough to satisfy his commissars.

In fairness to Douglas, he does go where few have gone before. The expulsion of Germans from the ancestral homes, many families of whom had lived there hundreds of years, is a crime so enormous and cruel that had it been the only crime committed by the Allies it would have been more than enough to convict them for all times to come as war criminals and inhuman monsters. Unfortunately, this Douglas tome is dry and dead as dust.

The German victims themselves are almost never heard from. Perhaps it is because Douglas feels Germans are not to be trusted. Citing that high moral authority, Edvard Beneš, the bloody butcher who orchestrated the massacre of Sudeten Germans in Czechoslovakia, Douglas quotes: “All German stories should not, of course, be believed, for Germans always exaggerated and were the first to whine and to try to enlist outside sympathy.” As a consequence, Douglas thereupon announces that he has thus “made it a rule to exclude direct expellee testimony that is not supported by independent sources.”

One must wonder just who these “independent sources” are that could provide better testimony than the victims themselves, but then again, perhaps that is not too hard to figure out. One must also wonder if Douglas would demand “independent sources” to support the statements of Jewish “survivors” and their extravagant claims of bestial Nazi atrocities? Of human soap? Of human lamp shades? Of shower heads spewing clouds of gas? Would he say those statements were also deeply offensive and historically illiterate? Right! And that is what separates this hypocritical court historian from an honest, unbiased truth-seeker.

Although a capable, competent study, as modern histories go, so intent is Douglas to dwell in the details of politics, borders, statistics, and demographics, that the personal and human is totally lost. One hardly is aware that the subjects of his book were actually real people, people who lived, breathed, suffered, cried, and all too often, people who died.

Nowhere is heard the screams of disarmed German soldiers as they were doused in gas by mobs and hung upside down like living torches. Nowhere is found the pathos of a mother, without shelter or food, watching her tiny child die of starvation right before her eyes. Nowhere are heard the groans of women, “from 8 to 80,” forced to endure one rape after another as they slowly bled to death.

This trend in modern historical writing—“historiography,” as it is stuffily called—is one reason why the reading of history has fallen in disrepute and why such books similar to Douglas’ cannot even be given away to the public. It is also why promising students upon entering college major in anything but history. This is the type of lifeless, insipid writing that kills the heat in a history-loving heart. I suppose it is easier for a reader to dismiss several million dead Germans if they fall asleep reading the book rather than transforming them into very real people who were deliberately murdered in cold blood.

What happened to Germany during and after the war was actually a crime wrapped around a crime—the evil abomination that was committed against the German people was the initial crime and the crime that kept it dark and hidden for almost 70 years was the other. If for no other reason, Orderly and Humane is important simply because of its existence and the tacit admission, tedious as it is, that once upon a time during the “Good War” this terrible crime did indeed occur.

* * *

Thomas Goodrich is a professional writer living in Florida. Tom’s most recent book, Hellstorm: The Death Of Nazi Germany, 1944–1947, is the first comprehensive account of Allied war crimes committed against Germany and her allies. It was reviewed for Counter-Currents by J. A. Sexton here. Tom is working on a companion volume that relates the crimes committed against Japan, 1941–1948.

 

mercredi, 03 avril 2013

La Corporation chez Julius Evola

La Corporation chez Julius Evola

par Stéphane Blanchonnet

Ex: http://a-rebours.ouvaton.org/

Article paru dans L'Action Sociale Corporative numéro 5.

evolapapa.jpgDans Le Fascisme vu de Droite – ouvrage disponible en français aux éditions Pardès – Julius Evola (1898-1974) propose une critique, au sens d'une analyse rigoureuse, méthodique et sans concession à l'égard de ses détracteurs comme de ses admirateurs, d'un régime et d'une idéologie dont il fut un compagnon de route atypique (Evola s'opposa notamment, dans un esprit contre-révolutionnaire, à l'importation du racisme biologique allemand, à l'abaissement du rôle de la monarchie, aux dérives étatistes et totalitaires). Ce livre publié en 1964 bénéficie à la fois de la proximité avec son sujet que donne à l'auteur sa qualité de témoin et d'acteur, ainsi que de la hauteur de vue que lui procurent la distance dans le temps et sa riche réflexion politique d'après-guerre, dont témoignent des œuvres comme Orientations (1950) ou Les hommes au milieu des ruines (1953). Deux chapitres du Fascisme vu de Droite retiendront particulièrement notre attention dans le cadre de cet article : le chapitre VIII consacré aux institutions fascistes en général et le chapitre IX consacré plus précisément au problème de la corporation et de l'organisation économique.

Une nouvelle forme de représentation

    Le chapitre VIII reconnaît d'abord au fascisme le mérite d'avoir abattu le parlementarisme. Outre la restauration de l'Etat, cette opération permet d'envisager une nouvelle forme de représentation qui tranche avec celle procurée par les partis parlementaires, structures dont le moyen est le clientélisme le plus vulgaire et la fin, non le service de l'Etat mais celui de leurs idéologies respectives : « ils se présentent dans une sorte de concours ou de compétition pour la meilleure défense des intérêts de tel ou tel groupe d'électeurs, mais en réalité ils ont chacun une dimension politique, chacun une idéologie ; ils ne connaissent ni intérêts ni exigences les dépassant, ils agissent dans l'état vide et visent chacun à la conquête du pouvoir : d'où une situation on ne peut plus chaotique et inorganique » (p. 75-76 de l'édition Pardès).
    Evola voit immédiatement dans l'abolition de ce système l'occasion de rétablir une représentation qualitative et organique (des groupes, en fonction de leur rôle dans le corps social) et non plus quantitative (des individus selon le principe : un homme, une voix), sur le modèle des institutions de l'Europe d'avant 1789 : « parce que ce n'était pas la simple force numérique des groupes, des corps ou des unités partielles ayant au Parlement leurs propres représentants qui était considérée, mais leur fonction et leur dignité. » (p. 77).
     Idéalement pour Evola, le nouveau régime aurait dû promouvoir une forme de bicaméralisme ainsi conçu : une Chambre basse représentant la société sur un mode qualitatif, différencié et organique (représentants des corporations professionnelles, de l'armée, de la magistrature et des autres corps) et une Chambre haute, un « Sénat, avec des membres exclusivement désignés d'en haut, choisis surtout en fonction de leur qualité politique, qualité de représentants de la dimension transcendante de l'état, donc aussi de facteurs spirituels, méta-économiques et nationaux » (p. 79) ayant pour but de faire prévaloir le plan des fins sur celui des moyens et proche en cela de l'idée d'un Ordre, au sens supérieur, traditionnel et religieux du terme. Hélas ce programme ne sera pas mis en œuvre, en tout cas pas dans toute la pureté de sa conception.

L'échec du fascisme

    Le chapitre IX s'intéresse plus précisément à l'un des composants de la Chambre basse : la corporation professionnelle. Evola y affirme d'abord la nécessité de « s'opposer à une fonction de la corporation soit comme instrument d'étatisation centralisatrice, soit comme instrument de conquête de l'état par l'économie. » (p. 82). En effet, il décèle deux premiers écueils dans le programme corporatiste : celui du dirigisme qui tue la libre initiative du chef d'entreprise, la corporation étant alors conçue comme une courroie de transmission au service d'un contrôle étatique de l'économie, et celui de "l'état corporatif", la corporation devenant alors l'instrument d'une dissolution du politique dans l'économie.
    A cela s'ajoute, le danger consistant à concevoir le corporatisme comme une superstructure nationale où les employeurs et les employés enverraient séparément et par branche leurs représentants, ce qui ne ferait qu'aggraver les antagonismes de classe. Sur ce dernier point, Evola constate l'échec du fascisme : « Le système institua […] sur le plan législatif le double front des employeurs et des travailleurs, dualité qui ne fut pas surmontée là où il aurait fallu, c'est-à-dire dans l'entreprise elle-même, au moyen d'une nouvelle structuration organique de celle-ci (donc dans sa structure interne), mais dans des superstructures étatiques générales affectées d'un lourd centralisme bureaucratique et, en pratique, souvent parasitaires et inefficaces. » (p. 85).
    L'auteur oppose à ce modèle bureaucratique, la « reconstruction organique infrastructurelle » (p. 90) des corporations, c'est-à-dire, l'idée d'une entreprise-communauté conçue de manière analogue à la nouvelle vision organique de la nation. C'est dans chaque entreprise donc qu'il conviendrait d'organiser la représentation de tous selon sa fonction : le chef d'entreprise, les cadres, les différents services et ateliers. Cette communauté de travail et son chef seraient alors responsables devant l'Etat.

Nécessité d'une transcendance

    Ce dernier point, la responsabilité devant l'Etat, manifeste l'ultime difficulté envisagée par Evola : sans un esprit commun, sans une transcendance politique et spirituelle, la corporation est vouée à l'échec. D'où la nécessaire reconnaissance du « caractère non seulement économique mais aussi éthique de la corporation » (p. 86), de la responsabilité morale du chef d'entreprise devant l'Etat « comme contrepartie de la reconnaissance de sa libre initiative » (p 87), de la lutte nécessaire contre un capitalisme « parasitaire » (le chef d'entreprise devant être le « premier travailleur » de son entreprise par opposition au simple bénéficiaire de dividendes), de la participation des employés aux bénéfices mais aussi aux pertes de l'entreprise.
    L'argumentation d'Evola sur la question sociale dans Le Fascisme vu de Droite présente l'intérêt de confronter les principes contre-révolutionnaires en la matière avec l'histoire de l'une des tentatives, partielle et insatisfaisante, mais réelle, de leur mise en œuvre au XXe siècle. L'idée la plus forte que l'on en retiendra est que le projet de restauration d'un ordre vraiment traditionnel et hiérarchique ne peut se mener sur un seul terrain, qu'il soit politique ou social et économique, mais correspondre à un changement complet de direction dans tous les domaines et d'abord au plan spirituel. Tout constructivisme politico-économique qui ne tient pas compte de la dimension anthropologique du problème posé par la Modernité se condamne à l'échec.

Stéphane BLANCHONNET

mardi, 02 avril 2013

Hobsbawm, ideologia forte e verità breve

Hobsbawm, ideologia forte e verità breve

I massacri stalinisti, l'attacco dell'Urss alla Finlandia, la repressione di Budapest: tutto "riletto" in chiave marxista

 

Asserite? Vediamo subito che cosa ordinava Lenin ai comunisti di Penza l'11 agosto 1918: «Impiccate assolutamente e pubblicamente non meno di cento kulak, ricchi e succhiatori del sangue del popolo, e pubblicate i loro nomi; togliete loro tutto il grano e preparate delle liste di ostaggi». È inutile aggiungere che l'operazione andava fatta «in via amministrativa», come si usava dire, senza processi né alcuna garanzia legale. Poche settimane dopo si calcola che le vittime della repressione seguita all'attentato di Fanya Kaplan siano state 20mila. La repressione fu ordinata dallo stesso Lenin convalescente (Memorandum a N. Krestinski del 3 settembre 1918). Ma Hobsbawm non amava i documenti, o almeno certi documenti.

Un'altra prova ci è fornita da come spiega l'insuccesso dei negoziati del 1939 tra Mosca e gli anglo-francesi per opporsi alla minacciata invasione tedesca della Polonia. Secondo Hobsbawm «i negoziatori di Stalin chiesero vanamente (agli anglo-francesi, ndr) che avanzassero proposte per operazioni congiunte nel Baltico» per combattere i tedeschi. Nel Baltico? No, i sovietici avevano chiesto di disporre di basi di partenza in Polonia, e i polacchi che conoscevano le intenzioni sovietiche avevano ovviamente rifiutato un simile “aiuto” interessato quanto pericoloso. Ma Hobsbawm si guarda bene dal dire che i negoziati per il patto di spartizione con la Germania che si sarebbe concluso a Mosca il 23 agosto erano cominciati molto prima di quelli con la Francia e la Gran Bretagna.
Egli parla, ovviamente, dell'accordo Ribbentrop-Molotov, spiegato come lo strumento necessario per spingere alla guerra la Germania e la Gran Bretagna, che «si sarebbero dissanguate a vicenda, a vantaggio dell'Urss che intanto, con le clausole segrete, avrebbe ripreso i territori perduti con la rivoluzione; il calcolo si dimostrò sbagliato». Hobsbawm dimenticava che la sua difesa del patto, nel 1939 era stata diversa, allineata cioè alle tesi sovietiche di allora, che coincidevano con quelle tedesche, secondo cui gli aggressori della povera Germania, alleata dell'Urss, erano stati gli anglo-francesi.
Quanto all'attacco sovietico alla Finlandia (la «guerra d'inverno, che costò all'Urss l'espulsione dalla Società delle Nazioni), essa era già stata spiegata in un tempestivo pamphlet da Eric Hobsbawm e Raymond Williams, suo compagno di partito, come una misura sovietica per «spingere un po' più lontano da Leningrado la frontiera» allo scopo di difendersi dall'invasione degli imperialisti britannici, allora in guerra con la Germania di Hitler. Anni più tardi Williams ammise che quel libello era stato compilato su ordine del partito comunista britannico, che aveva ricevuto ordini da Mosca. Hobsbawm non ricorse neppure a questa giustificazione per spiegare l'assurda tesi che aveva sostenuto con la sua autorità di storico.

Con l'attacco tedesco l'Urss si riscoprì antifascista e addirittura «democratica». Ma le pene di Hobsbawm non erano finite. Alcune si limita a ignorarle, per «non dover contraddire la sua militanza», ragione per cui i suoi lettori non sapranno nulla di un certo episodio svoltosi a Katyn e dintorni costato la vita a 20mila polacchi. L'insurrezione di Varsavia nel 1944 fallì - ci spiega - perché «prematura», anche se le truppe sovietiche erano a qualche chilometro e si astennero dall'intervenire, perché gli insorti si consideravano seguaci del governo in esilio a Londra e non di quello comunista sostenuto o meglio inventato da Mosca.
Più in generale nel 1945 non vi fu la sovietizzazione dell'Europa orientale ma «la grande avanzata della rivoluzione globale». I sovietici non avevano intenzioni aggressive, anzi Stalin faceva una politica difensiva, tanto è vero che accettò Berlino occidentale come una enclave nella Germania, «sia pure con riluttanza» (delicata allusione al blocco di quella città durato un anno). Il muro di Berlino fu dovuto, sostiene Hobsbawm, alla paura reciproca. Questo spiega perché i cittadini tedesco-orientali correvano il rischio di una fucilata se fossero andati a vedere di che cosa si aveva paura dall'altra parte: insana curiosità punita diverse centinaia di volte con l'immediata pena di morte inflitta dai Vopos. Nel 1950 non vi fu - secondo lo storico marxista - un tentativo nordcoreano di annettere la Corea meridionale: Pyongyang soltanto stava «dilagando» (spreading) nel sud. «Ah, qu'en termes galants, ces choses-là sont mises!».

È superfluo continuare a elencare le libertà che il defunto grande storico si prese con la verità. Egli afferma che Stalin non era totalitario; forse avrebbe voluto esserlo ma, secondo Hobsbawm, non ci riuscì per la resistenza di altri poteri non meglio specificati: chissà che cosa avrebbe fatto se ci fosse riuscito. Qualcuno ha affermato che almeno sulla repressione della rivolta ungherese del 1956 egli avrebbe espresso qualche riserva. È cosi? Ecco quel che scrisse: «Pur approvando con il cuore gonfio ciò che sta accadendo in Ungheria dobbiamo dire francamente che secondo noi l'URSS dovrebbe ritirare appena possibile le sue truppe da quel Paese». È inutile chiedersi in quale conto gli uomini del Cremlino abbiano tenuto l'amichevole consiglio dell'amico storico marxista.

E sulla Cecoslovacchia? Qui egli fu chiaro: «Per quanto fragili i sistemi comunisti si siano dimostrati, soltanto un uso limitato, addirittura nominale di coercizione armata fu necessario per mantenerli dal 1957 al 1989». Com'è noto, l'uso limitato della coercizione esercitato dall'Urss sulla Cecoslovacchia consistette in un esercito di 27 divisioni per complessivi 400mila soldati e 6.300 carri armati. In definitiva, concludeva il Nostro, il comunismo era in realtà un «Illuminismo».
Una virtù è tuttavia necessario riconoscere a Hobsbawm: quella della coerenza. Quando nel 1995 gli fu chiesto se l'aver appreso che il massacro di 15 o 20 milioni di uomini, donne e bambini nell'Unione Sovietica negli anni Trenta e Quaranta gli avesse fatto cambiare opinione, rispose orgogliosamente di no. Ciò significa, fu la domanda successiva, che valeva la pena uccidere tante persone? «Certamente», ripeté Hobsbawm.

00:08 Publié dans Histoire, Philosophie | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0) | Tags : eric hobsbawm, marxisme, histoire, philosophie | |  del.icio.us | | Digg! Digg |  Facebook

lundi, 01 avril 2013

Marcel Déat: patriotisme européen

marcel-dc3a9at.jpg

Patriotisme Européen

Marcel Déat

Ex: http://fierteseuropeennes.hautetfort.com/

 

Extraits  tirés d’un texte (toujours d’actualité !) publié dans « La Jeune Europe ( Revue des combattants de la jeunesse universitaire européenne ) », cahier 3/4, 1942.  

 

Je le dis tout net : si cette guerre ne contenait pas la promesse de l’unité européenne, si ce prodigieux conflit n’était pas en même temps la grande révolution des temps modernes, et si l’Allemagne nationale-socialiste n’était pas à la fois la conductrice et la garante de nos espoirs révolutionnaires, je ne vois pas pourquoi je serais « collaborationniste ». Sinon pour combiner, vaille que vaille, un sauvetage français, sous le signe de « l’égoïsme sacré », quitte à poignarder dans le dos mon partenaire, si l’occasion venait à s’offrir.

Et quiconque n’est pas socialiste autant que national, européen autant que français, doit en effet s’établir sur ces positions et ne plus en bouger. C’est bien ce que nous constatons, depuis un an, quels que soient les discours. Je ne crois pas qu’il y ait désormais une confusion possible entre cette attitude et la nôtre. Et je me suis permis d’indiquer que les conséquences, pour la patrie, étaient autrement fécondes, autrement riches, si l’on consentait enfin à se jeter, corps et âme, dans la bataille européenne, et sans regarder derrière soi.

Mais l’incompréhension engendre trop facilement la calomnie, et la sottise est trop près du dénigrement, pour que nous n’éclairions pas en plein certaines idées. On a assez accusé de chimère le vieux socialisme, quand il évoquait l’Europe, quand il s’enivrait d’universalisme, pour qu’on ne manque pas de reprocher au nouveau socialisme un identique irréalisme. Comme si, selon la juste remarque de Jacques Chardonne, l’Allemagne d’aujourd’hui n’était pas merveilleusement différente de celle d’avant-hier.

Comme si le rassemblement des révolutionnaires européens avait désormais à voir avec les palabres des congrès internationaux.

Il ne s’agit plus de prononcer des discours solennels, de pontifier sur des tribunes, d’ergoter sur des résolutions, de formuler des dogmes avec l’autorité qui s’attache aux conciles. Il s’agit de combattre, d’abord, et ensuite de bâtir. De combattre les armes à la main, sur d’immenses champs de bataille, avec le risque que cela comporte. De combattre aussi dans les bagarres civiques, d’y risquer pareillement sa vie, et bien plus encore, sa tranquillité, sa réputation, son pain, son honneur. Et ce ne sera pas trop de tous ces sacrifices pour aider à l’accouchement d’un monde.

Fort bien, diront nos sages. Mais pourquoi cette fuite vers l’Europe, alors que la patrie est pantelante et requiert l’effort de tous ?

Mais qui parle de fuite ? Et qu’est-ce donc que l’Europe, sinon l’ensemble des patries ? Et où veut-on que nous servions l’Europe, sinon chez nous, sinon en France, sinon par la France et pour la France ? Il n’y a pas une terre européennne, indivise et neutre, où nous puissions planter indifféremment notre tente. Il y a une France, qui est en Europe, qui est un élément nécessaire de l’Europe. Et les deux réalités ne se séparent point.

Ce qui est vrai, c’est qu’en effet nous refusons « l’égoïsme sacré ». Que nous n’acceptons pas le refrain maurrassien sur « la France, la France seule ». Parce que cela n’a pas de sens, ou bien signifie qu’on se dresse contre l’unité continentale, qu’on la refuse, et que, sournoisement, on espère retrouver, au delà des mers, les anglo-saxons et leur capitalisme. Car, il faut bien rire, nos super-patriotes, qui repoussent si noblement l’impur contact germanique, ont la passion d’être à nouveau asservis aux seigneurs de la City et de Wall Street.

Et bien ! oui, nous commençons à avoir un patriotisme européen, une sensibilité européenne.

(…)

L’expérience a prouvé qu’une bigarrure de nations théoriquement assemblées à Genêve ne faisait pas une Europe. Il n’y a d’unité que dans une solidarité totale de la vie matérielle, et dans la similitude essentielle des institutions. La guerre, la révolution, sont en train de brasser les peuples et d’unifier les tendances, de rendre convergentes les aspirations politiques et sociales. Et c’est une triste chimère que d’espérer une unité française en dehors de ce passage au creuset de la révolution.

Qu’on nous laisse tranquille avec les propos abstraits et les poncifs officiels sur l’unité française : il y a une réalité française que rien n’entamera. (…) Il y a un trésor français que l’histoire nous lègue et qui jamais ne sera perdu. Mais la France dont l’Europe à besoin, la France sans laquelle il n’y aura plus vraiment de nation française, doit avoir une autre température, elle doit brûler d’une autre flamme. Un certain patriotisme d’image d’Epinal ne la gardera pas des effritements et des affaissements internes. Et si une grande passion ne la saisit pas, si une ardente mystique collective ne s’empare pas d’elle, ne la porte pas vers son vrai destin, il ne lui restera que la force misérable et désordonnée qui se disperse et s’épuise en déchirements.

Je prie pour que nos politique y songent : l’élan vers l’Europe sauvera la France de plus d’une manière, même en l’arrachant à ce qu’elle prend orgueilleusement pour une solitude, à un narcissisme ridicule et désespéré, à un radotage de vieillards au coin du feu. La révolution fait l’Europe, la révolution refait la France, la révolution concilie l’Europe et la France.

 

Marcel Déat / 1942. 

 patriotisme européen,marcel déat,europe,france,nationalisme,européanisme,identité européenne

Quelques exemplaires de « La Jeune Europe », retrouvés en faisant un peu de rangement.  

Une véritable mine d’excellents textes, tous très rares… dont nous vous offrirons régulièrement quelques pépites, le temps pour nous de les relire, trier et (surtout) taper.

patriotisme européen,marcel déat,europe,france,nationalisme,européanisme,identité européenne

dimanche, 31 mars 2013

Savage Continent

Savage Continent: Europe in the Aftermath of World War Two, By Keith Lowe

 
In his memoir If This is a Man, the Italian writer Primo Levi recalls that the most terrifying time for him at Auschwitz was not the years of incarceration by the Nazis, when beatings, hunger, back-breaking work and the threat of murder were omnipresent. He came closest to despair during the vacuum between the flight of the guards and the arrival of the Red Army. This period, in which the prisoners were effectively left to their own devices, was characterised by a complete breakdown of all authority, however unjust, as well as the system of supply. I was reminded of these passages when reading Keith Lowe's Savage Continent: an excellent account of the two years or so between the end of hostilities in Europe with the defeat of Hitler, and the establishment of the Cold War order.
 

Savage.jpgAs the author points out, the Second World War did not end in 1945. In large parts of the continent, the contest lasted a lot longer as Polish, Ukrainian, Baltic and Greek partisans battled on in the mountains and forests of Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean. Some of these stories, such as the post-war travails of the Greeks, are well known to Western audiences, but the activities of the Lithuanian, Latvian and Estonian anti-Soviet "Forest Brothers" are not. Perhaps the most arresting fact in this compelling book is that the last Estonian guerrilla fighter, August Sabbe, was killed as late as 1978, trying to escape capture.

Even where there was no fighting, Lowe demonstrates, Europe was in flux. A contemporary observer described Germany, the crossroads of the continent, as "one huge ants' nest", in which everyone was on the move. There were refugees everywhere, some trying to escape the victors, others returning to their homes. Millions of German prisoners of war were crammed into insanitary Anglo-American camps in the West; and they were the lucky ones, unlike those captured by the Russians and taken to camps in Siberia, or murdered en route. Almost everywhere, the Nazi collapse was followed by a bloody settling of scores against real or alleged collaborators. Lowe shows that the numbers affected in places like France to have been much exaggerated by subsequent myth-makers; in Yugoslavia, on the other hand, the reckoning was truly horrific, the more so as British troops were actively involved in sending men and women back to face certain death at Tito's hands.

All this was accompanied by the greatest population shifts in Europe since the Dark Ages. These had, of course, begun during the war. Lowe notes the huge void left by the Nazi murder of the Jews, but he points out that it was not so much the Holocaust itself as the persistence of anti-Semitism in places like Poland and Hungary which persuaded so many survivors to make for Israel or the US. In eastern Poland and western Ukraine, new borders led to a massive exchange of populations attended by great hardship and brutality.

The principal post-war victims, however, were the Germans, systematically expelled by the Czechs and Poles from lands which they had settled for hundreds of years. Lowe describes these events too with admirable sensitivity, placing them squarely in the context of prior Nazi policies, without in any way justifying them.

sav2.jpgEurope was also in political flux. The war had destroyed the standing of the old elites, and brought the Red Army into the heart of the continent. It was Soviet power, rather than the failure of the ancien regime as such, which underpinned the wave of Communist takeovers in Eastern Europe. Lowe describes the Romanian case in fascinating detail. Hungary, Czechoslovakia, Poland and Bulgaria all met broadly similar fates: red terror, arrests, expropriation of land and property, and executions. In Greece, the boot was on the other foot, as the right-wing government parlayed first British then American help into brutal victory over the communists. Lowe notes the "unpleasant symmetry" caused by Cold War imperatives without in any way denying that "the capitalist model of politics was self-evidently more inclusive, more democratic and ultimately more successful than Stalinist communism".

Savage Continent is thus a fitting title for this book, and surely also an allusion to Dark Continent, Mark Mazower's brilliant history of the 20th century. Lowe's vivid descriptions of Europeans scrambling for scraps of food, rampant theft and "destruction of morals" are a timely reminder that a certain humility is in order when we look at less fortunate continents today. The author is also right to remind us, with respect to current travails in Iraq and Afghanistan, just how long it took to rebuild Europe and for democracy to take root – or to return.

That said, Lowe could perhaps have said more about the Europeans who emerged from the war with a new and uplifting vision: that the only way for the continent to prevent this from happening again, and to realise its full potential, was to chart a course towards greater unity. It was in the midst of the ruins described by this book that men such as Robert Schuman, Jean Monnet, Alcide de Gasperi and Altero Spinelli were taking the first steps towards what was to become the European Union. In this sense, Europe is a continent which contains not only the seeds of its self-destruction but also of its renewal.

Brendan Simms is a professor of history at Cambridge University; his 'Old Europe: a history of the continent since 1500' is published this summer by Allen Lane

samedi, 30 mars 2013

Stalin’s Fight Against International Communism

Stalin’s Fight Against International Communism

By Kerry Bolton stalin-the-enduring-legacy

Ex: http://www.counter-currents.com/

Editor’s Note:

This is the first chapter of Kerry Bolton’s new book Stalin: The Enduring Legacy [2] (London: Black House Publishing, 2012). The chapter is being reprinted as formatted in the book. Counter-Currents will also run a review of the book, which I highly recommend. 

The notion that Stalin ‘fought communism’ at a glance seems bizarre. However, the contention is neither unique nor new. Early last century the seminal German conservative philosopher-historian Oswald Spengler stated that Communism in Russia would metamorphose into something distinctly Russian which would be quite different from the alien Marxist dogma that had been imposed upon it from outside. Spengler saw Russia as both a danger to Western Civilisation as the leader of a ‘coloured world-revolution’, and conversely as a potential ally of a revived Germany against the plutocracies. Spengler stated of Russia’s potential rejection of Marxism as an alien imposition from the decaying West that,

Race, language, popular customs, religion, in their present form… all or any of them can and will be fundamentally transformed. What we see today then is simply the new kind of life which a vast land has conceived and will presently bring forth. It is not definable in words, nor is its bearer aware of it. Those who attempt to define, establish, lay down a program, are confusing life with a phrase, as does the ruling Bolshevism, which is not sufficiently conscious of its own West-European, Rationalistic and cosmopolitan origin.[1]

Even as he wrote, Bolshevism in the USSR was being fundamentally transformed in the ways Spengler foresaw. The ‘rationalistic’ and ‘cosmopolitan’ origins of Bolshevism were soon being openly repudiated, and a new course was defined by Zhdanov and other Soviet eminences.

Contemporary with Spengler in Weimer Germany, there arose among the ‘Right’ the ‘National Bolshevik’ faction one of whose primary demands was that Germany align with the Soviet Union against the Western plutocracies. From the Soviet side, possibilities of an alliance with the ‘Right’ were far from discounted and high level Soviet sources cultivated contacts with the pro-Russian factions of the German Right including the National Bolsheviks.[2]

German-Soviet friendship societies included many conservatives. In Arbeitsgemeinschaft zum Studium der Sowjetrussichen Planwirtschaft (Arplan)[3] Conservative-Revolutionaries and National Bolsheviks comprised a third of the membership. Bund Geistige Berufe (BGB)[4] was founded in 1931 and was of particular interest to Soviet Russia, according to Soviet documents, which aimed ‘to attract into the orbit of our influence a range of highly placed intellectuals of rightist orientation’.[5]

The profound changes caused Konstantin Rodzaevsky, leader of the Russian Fascist Union among the White Russian émigrés at Harbin, to soberly reassess the USSR and in 1945 he wrote to Stalin:

Not all at once, but step by step we came to this conclusion. We decided that: Stalinism is exactly what we mistakenly called ‘Russian Fascism’. It is our Russian Fascism cleansed of extremes, illusions, and errors.[6]

In the aftermath of World War II many German war veterans, despite the devastating conflagration between Germany and the USSR, and the rampage of the Red Army across Germany with Allied contrivance, were vociferous opponents of any German alliance with the USA against the USSR. Major General Otto E Remer and the Socialist Reich Party were in the forefront of advocating a ‘neutralist’ line for Germany during the ‘Cold War’, while one of their political advisers, the American Spenglerian philosopher Francis Parker Yockey, saw Russian occupation as less culturally debilitating than the ‘spiritual syphilis’ of Hollywood and New York, and recommended the collaboration of European rightists and neo-Fascists with the USSR against the USA.[7] Others of the American Right, such as the Yockeyan and Spenglerian influenced newspaper Common Sense, saw the USSR from the time of Stalin as the primary power in confronting Marxism, and they regarded New York as the real ‘capitol’ of Marxism.[8]

What might be regarded by many as an ‘eccentric’ element from the Right were not alone in seeing that the USSR had undergone a revolutionary transformation. Many of the Left regarded Stalin’s Russia as a travesty of Marxism. The most well-known and vehement was of course Leon Trotsky who condemned Stalin for having ‘betrayed the revolution’ and for reversing doctrinaire Marxism. On the other hand, the USA for decades supported Marxists, and especially Trotskyites, in trying to subvert the USSR during the Cold War. The USA, as the columnists at Common Sense continually insisted, was promoting Marxism, while Stalin was fighting it. This dichotomy between Russian National Bolshevism and US sponsored international Marxism was to having lasting consequences for the post-war world up to the present.

Stalin Purges Marxism

The Moscow Trials purging Trotskyites and other veteran Bolsheviks were merely the most obvious manifestations of Stalin’s struggle against alien Marxism. While much has been written condemning the trials as a modern day version of the Salem witch trials, and while the Soviet methods were often less than judicious the basic allegations against the Trotskyites et al were justified. The trials moreover, were open to the public, including western press, diplomats and jurists. There can be no serious doubt that Trotskyites in alliance with other old Bolsheviks such as Zinoviev and Kameneff were complicit in attempting to overthrow the Soviet state under Stalin. That was after all, the raison d’etre of Trotsky et al, and Trotsky’s hubris could not conceal his aims.[9]

The purging of these anti-Stalinist co-conspirators was only a part of the Stalinist fight against the Old Bolsheviks. Stalin’s relations with Lenin had not been cordial, Lenin accusing him of acting like a ‘Great Russian chauvinist’.[10] Indeed, the ‘Great Russians’ were heralded as the well-spring of Stalin’s Russia, and were elevated to master-race like status during and after the ‘Great Patriotic War’ against Germany. Lenin, near death, regarded Stalin’s demeanour as ‘offensive’, and as not showing automatic obedience. Lenin wished for Stalin to be removed as Bolshevik Party General Secretary.[11]

Dissolving the Comintern

The most symbolic acts of Stalin against International Communism were the elimination of the Association of Old Bolsheviks, and the destruction of the Communist International (Comintern). The Comintern, or Third International, was to be the basis of the world revolution, having been founded in 1919 in Moscow with 52 delegates from 25 countries.[12] Zinoviev headed the Comintern’s Executive Committee.[13] He was replaced by Bukharin in 1926.[14] Both Zinonviev and Bukharin were among the many ‘Old Bolsheviks’ eliminated by Stalin.

Stalin regarded the Comintern with animosity. It seemed to function more as an enemy agency than as a tool of Stalin, or at least that is how Stalin perceived the organisation. Robert Service states that Dimitrov, the head of the Comintern at the time of its dissolution, was accustomed to Stalin’s accusations against it. In 1937 Stalin had barked at him that ‘all of you in Comintern are hand in glove with the enemy’.[15] Dimitrov must have wondered how long he had to live.[16]

Instead of the Communist parties serving as agents of the world revolution, in typically Marxist manner, and the purpose for founding the Comintern, the Communist parties outside Russia were expected to be nationally oriented. In 1941 Stalin stated of this:

The International was created in Marx’s time in the expectation of an approaching international revolution. Comintern was created in Lenin’s time at an analogous moment. Today, national tasks emerge for each country as a supreme priority. Do not hold on tight to what was yesterday.[17]

This was a flagrant repudiation of Marxist orthodoxy, and places Stalinism within the context of National Bolshevism.

The German offensive postponed Stalin’s plans for the elimination of the Comintern, and those operatives who had survived the ‘Great Purge’ were ordered to Ufa, South of the Urals. Dimitrov was sent to Kuibyshev on the Volga. After the Battle of Stalingrad, Stalin returned to the issue of the Comintern, and told Dimitrov on 8 May 1943 to wind up the organisation. Dimitrov was transferred to the International Department of the Bolshevik Party Central Committee.[18] Robert Service suggests that this could have allayed fears among the Allies that Stalin would pursue world revolution in the post-war world. However, Stalin’s suspicion of the Comintern and the liquidation of many of its important operatives indicate fundamental belligerence between the two. In place of proletarian international solidarity, Stalin established an All-Slavic Committee[19] to promote Slavic folkish solidarity, although the inclusion of the Magyars[20] was problematic.

Stalin throughout his reign undertook a vigorous elimination of World Communist leaders. Stalin decimated communist refugees from fascism living in the USSR. While only 5 members of the Politburo of the German Communist Party had been killed under Hitler, in the USSR 7 were liquidated, and 41 out of 68 party leaders. The entire Central Committee of the Polish Communist Party in exile were liquidated, and an estimated 5000 party members were killed. The Polish Communist Party was formally dissolved in 1938. 700 Comintern headquarters staff were purged.[21]

Among the foreign Communist luminaries who were liquidated was Bela Kun, whose psychotic Communist regime in Hungary in 1919 lasted 133 days. Kun fled to the Soviet Union where he oversaw the killing of 50,000 soldiers and civilians attached to the White Army under Wrangle, who had surrendered after being promised amnesty. Kun was a member of the Executive Committee of the Comintern. A favourite of Lenin’s, this bloody lunatic served as a Comintern agent in Germany, Austria and Czechoslovakia during the 1920s. In 1938 he was brought before a tribunal and after a brief trial was executed the same day.[22]

Another action of great symbolism was Stalin’s moves against the ‘Old Bolsheviks’, the veterans of the 1917 Revolution. Leon Sedov, Leon Trotsky’s son, in his pamphlet on the Great Purge of the late 1930s, waxed indignant that Stalin ‘coldly orders the shooting of Bolsheviks, former leaders of the Party and the Comintern, and heroes of the Civil War’.[23] ‘The Association of Old Bolsheviks and that of the former political prisoners has been dissolved. They were too strong a reminder of the “cursed” revolutionary past’.[24]

In place of the Comintern the Cominform was established in 1947, for the purpose of instructing Communist parties to campaign against the Marshall Aid programme that was designed to bring war-ravished Europe under US hegemony. ‘European communism was to be redirected’ towards maintaining the gains of the Red Army during World War II. ‘Communist parties in Western Europe could stir up trouble’, against the USA. The Cominform was far removed from being a resurrection of the old Comintern. As to who was invited to the inaugural meeting held at a secluded village in Poland, ‘Stalin… refused a request from Mao Zedong, who obviously thought that the plan was to re-establish the Communist International’. The Spanish and Portuguese parties were not invited, nor were the British, or the Greek Communist Party, which was fighting a civil war against the royalists.[25]

The extent of the ‘fraternity’ between the USSR and the foreign Communists can be gauged from the delegates having not been given prior knowledge of the agenda, and being ‘treated like detainees on arrival’. While Soviet delegates Malenkov and Zhdanov kept in regular communication with Stalin, none of the other delegates were permitted communication with the outside world.[26]

Repudiation of Marxist Doctrine

The implementation of Marxism as a policy upon which to construct a State was of course worthless, and Stalin reversed the doctrinaire Marxism that he had inherited from the Lenin regime. Leon Sedov indignantly stated of this:

In the most diverse areas, the heritage of the October revolution is being liquidated. Revolutionary internationalism gives way to the cult of the fatherland in the strictest sense. And the fatherland means, above all, the authorities. Ranks, decorations and titles have been reintroduced. The officer caste headed by the marshals has been reestablished. The old communist workers are pushed into the background; the working class is divided into different layers; the bureaucracy bases itself on the ‘non-party Bolshevik’, the Stakhanovist, that is, the workers’ aristocracy, on the foreman and, above all, on the specialist and the administrator. The old petit-bourgeois family is being reestablished and idealized in the most middle-class way; despite the general protestations, abortions are prohibited, which, given the difficult material conditions and the primitive state of culture and hygiene, means the enslavement of women, that is, the return to pre-October times. The decree of the October revolution concerning new schools has been annulled. School has been reformed on the model of tsarist Russia: uniforms have been reintroduced for the students, not only to shackle their independence, but also to facilitate their surveillance outside of school. Students are evaluated according to their marks for behaviour, and these favour the docile, servile student, not the lively and independent schoolboy. The fundamental virtue of youth today is the ‘respect for one’s elders’, along with the ‘respect for the uniform’. A whole institute of inspectors has been created to look after the behaviour and morality of the youth.[27]

This is what Leon Sedov, and his father, Leon Trotsky, called the ‘Bonapartist character of Stalinism’.[28] And that is precisely what Stalin represents in history: the Napoleon of the Bolshevik Revolution who reversed the Marxian doctrinal excrescences in a manner analogous to that of Napoleon’s reversal of Jacobin fanaticism after the 1789 French Revolution. Underneath the hypocritical moral outrage about Stalinist ‘repression’, etc.,[29] a number of salient factors emerge regarding Stalin’s repudiation of Marxist-Leninist dogma:

  • The ‘fatherland’ or what was called again especially during World War II, ‘Holy Mother Russia’, replaced international class war and world revolution.
  • Hierarchy in the military and elsewhere was re-established openly rather than under a hypocritical façade of soviet democracy and equality.
  • A new technocratic elite was established, analogous to the principles of German ‘National Bolshevism’.
  • The traditional family, the destruction of which is one of the primary aims of Marxism generally[30] and Trotskyism specifically,[31] was re-established.
  • Abortion, the liberalisation of which was heralded as a great achievement in woman’s emancipation in the early days of Bolshevik Russia, was reversed.
  • A Czarist type discipline was reintroduced to the schools; Leon Sedov condemned this as shackling the free spirit of youth, as if there were any such freedom under the Leninist regime.
  • ‘Respect for elders’ was re-established, again anathema to the Marxists who seek the destruction of family life through the alienation of children from parents.[32]

What the Trotskyites and other Marxists object to was Stalin’s establishment the USSR as a powerful ‘nation-state’, and later as an imperial power, rather than as a citadel for world revolution. However, the Trotskyites, more than any other Marxist faction, allied themselves to American imperialism in their hatred of Stalinist Russia, and served as the most enthusiastic partisans of the Cold War.[33] Sedov continued:

Stalin not only bloodily breaks with Bolshevism, with all its traditions and its past, he is also trying to drag Bolshevism and the October revolution through the mud. And he is doing it in the interests of world and domestic reaction. The corpses of Zinoviev and Kamenev must show to the world bourgeoisie that Stalin has broken with the revolution, and must testify to his loyalty and ability to lead a nation-state. The corpses of the old Bolsheviks must prove to the world bourgeoisie that Stalin has in reality radically changed his politics, that the men who entered history as the leaders of revolutionary Bolshevism, the enemies of the bourgeoisie, – are his enemies also. Trotsky, whose name is inseparably linked with that of Lenin as the leader of the October revolution, Trotsky, the founder and leader of the Red Army; Zinoviev and Kamenev, the closest disciples of Lenin, one, president of the Comintern, the other, Lenin’s deputy and member of the Politburo; Smirnov, one of the oldest Bolsheviks, conqueror of Kolchak—today they are being shot and the bourgeoisie of the world must see in this the symbol of a new period. This is the end of the revolution, says Stalin. The world bourgeoisie can and must reckon with Stalin as a serious ally, as the head of a nation-state…. Stalin has abandoned long ago the course toward world revolution.[34]

As history shows, it was not Stalin to whom the ‘world bourgeoisie’ or more aptly, the world plutocracy, looked on as an ally, but leading Trotskyites whose hatred of Stalin and the USSR made them vociferous advocates of American foreign policy.

Family Life Restored

Leon Trotsky is particularly interesting in regard to what he saw as the ‘revolution betrayed’ in his condemnation of Stalinist policies on ‘youth, family, and culture’. Using the term ‘Thermidor’, taken from the French revolutionary era, in his description of Stalinism vis-à-vis the Bolshevik revolution, Trotsky began his critique on family, generational and gender relations. Chapter 7 of The Revolution Betrayed is worth reading in its entirety as an over-view of how Stalin reversed Marxism-Leninism. Whether that is ‘good’ or ‘bad’ is, of course, left to the subjectivity of the reader.[35]

The primary raison d’etre of Marxism for Trotsky personally seems to have been the destruction of religion and of family (as it was for Marx).[36] Hence, the amount of attention Trotsky gives to lamenting the return to traditional family relations under Stalin:

The revolution made a heroic effort to destroy the so-called ‘family hearth’ – that archaic, stuffy and stagnant institution in which the woman of the toiling classes performs galley labor from childhood to death. The place of the family as a shut-in petty enterprise was to be occupied, according to the plans, by a finished system of social care and accommodation: maternity houses, creches, kindergartens, schools, social dining rooms, social laundries, first-aid stations, hospitals, sanatoria, athletic organizations, moving-picture theaters, etc. The complete absorption of the housekeeping functions of the family by institutions of the socialist society, uniting all generations in solidarity and mutual aid, was to bring to woman, and thereby to the loving couple, a real liberation from the thousand-year-old fetters. Up to now this problem of problems has not been solved. The forty million Soviet families remain in their overwhelming majority nests of medievalism, female slavery and hysteria, daily humiliation of children, feminine and childish superstition. We must permit ourselves no illusions on this account. For that very reason, the consecutive changes in the approach to the problem of the family in the Soviet Union best of all characterize the actual nature of Soviet society and the evolution of its ruling stratum.[37]

Marxism, behind the façade of women’s emancipation, ridicules the traditional female role in the family as ‘galley labour’, but does so for the purpose of delivering women to the ‘galley labour’ of the Marxist state. The Marxist solution is to take the child from the parents and substitute parental authority for the State via childcare. As is apparent today, the Marxist ideal regarding the family and children is the same as that of big capitalism. It is typical of the manner by which Marxism, including Communism, converges with plutocracy, as Spengler pointed out soon after the 1917 Revolution in Russia.[38]

Trotsky states, ‘you cannot “abolish” the family; you have to replace it’. The aim was to replace the family with the state apparatus: ‘During the lean years, the workers wherever possible, and in part their families, ate in the factory and other social dining rooms, and this fact was officially regarded as a transition to a socialist form of life’. Trotsky decries the reversal by Stalin of this subversion of the family hearth: ‘The fact is that from the moment of the abolition of the food-card system in 1935, all the better placed workers began to return to the home dining table’. Women as mothers and wives were retuning to the home rather than being dragooned into factories, Trotsky getting increasingly vehement at these reversals of Marxism:

Back to the family hearth! But home cooking and the home washtub, which are now half shamefacedly celebrated by orators and journalists, mean the return of the workers’ wives to their pots and pans that is, to the old slavery.[39]

The original Bolshevik plan was for a new slavery where all would be bound to the factory floor regardless of gender, a now familiar aim of global capitalism, behind the façade of ‘equality’.  Trotsky lamented that the rural family was even stronger: ‘The rural family, bound up not only with home industry but with agriculture, is infinitely more stable and conservative than that of the town’. There had been major reversals in the collectivisation of the peasant families: they were again obtaining most of their food from private lots rather than collectivised farms, and ‘there can no longer be any talk of social dining rooms’. ‘Thus the midget farms, [were] creating a new basis for the domestic hearthstone…’[40]

The pioneering of abortion rights by the Leninist regime was celebrated as a great achievement of Bolshevism, which was, however, reversed by Stalin with the celebration instead of motherhood. In terms that are today conventional throughout the Western world, Trotsky stated that due to the economic burden of children upon women,

…It is just for this reason that the revolutionary power gave women the right to abortion, which in conditions of want and family distress, whatever may be said upon this subject by the eunuchs and old maids of both sexes, is one of her most important civil, political and cultural rights. However, this right of women too, gloomy enough in itself, is under the existing social inequality being converted into a privilege.[41]

The Old Bolsheviks demanded abortion as a means of ‘emancipating women’ from children and family. One can hardly account for the Bolshevik attitude by an appeal to anyone’s ‘rights’ (sic). The answer to the economic hardship of childbearing was surely to eliminate the causes of the hardship. In fact, this was the aim of the Stalinists, Trotsky citing this in condemnation:

One of the members of the highest Soviet court, Soltz, a specialist on matrimonial questions, bases the forthcoming prohibition of abortion on the fact that in a socialist society where there are no unemployed, etc., etc., a woman has no right to decline ‘the joys of motherhood’.[42]

On June 27 1936 a law was passed prohibiting abortion, which Trotsky called the natural and logical fruit of a ‘Thermidorian reaction’.[43] The redemption of the family and motherhood was damned perhaps more vehemently by Trotsky than any other aspect of Stalinism as a repudiation of the ‘ABCs of Communism’, which he stated includes ‘getting women out of the clutches of the family’.

Everybody and everything is dragged into the new course: lawgiver and litterateur, court and militia, newspaper and schoolroom. When a naive and honest communist youth makes bold to write in his paper: ‘You would do better to occupy yourself with solving the problem how woman can get out of the clutches of the family’, he receives in answer a couple of good smacks and – is silent. The ABCs of Communism are declared a ‘leftist excess’. The stupid and stale prejudices of uncultured philistines are resurrected in the name of a new morale. And what is happening in daily life in all the nooks and corners of this measureless country? The press reflects only in a faint degree the depth of the Thermidorian reaction in the sphere of the family.[44]

A ‘new’ or what we might better call traditional ‘morale’ had returned. Marriage and family were being revived in contrast to the laws of early Bolshevik rule:

The lyric, academical and other ‘friends of the Soviet Union’ have eyes in order to see nothing. The marriage and family laws established by the October revolution, once the object of its legitimate pride, are being made over and mutilated by vast borrowings from the law treasuries of the bourgeois countries. And as though on purpose to stamp treachery with ridicule, the same arguments which were earlier advanced in favor of unconditional freedom of divorce and abortion – ‘the liberation of women’, ‘defense of the rights of personality’, ‘protection of motherhood’ – are repeated now in favor of their limitation and complete prohibition.[45]

Trotsky proudly stated that the Bolsheviks had sought to alienate children from their parents, but under Stalin parents resumed their responsibilities as the guardians of their children’s welfare, rather than the role being allotted to factory crèches. It seems, that in this respect at least, Stalinist Russia was less a Marxian-Bolshevik state than the present day capitalist states which insist that mothers should leave their children to the upbringing of crèches while they are forced to work; and ironically those most vocal in demanding such polices are often regarded as ‘right-wing’.

Trotsky lauded the policy of the early Bolshevik state, to the point where the state withdrew support from parents

While the hope still lived of concentrating the education of the new generations in the hands of the state, the government was not only unconcerned about supporting the authority of the ‘elders’, and, in particular of the mother and father, but on the contrary tried its best to separate the children from the family, in order thus to protect them from the traditions of a stagnant mode of life.[46]

Trotsky portrayed the early Bolshevik experiments as the saving of children from ‘drunken fathers or religious mothers’; ‘a shaking of parental authority to its very foundations’.[47]

Stalinist Russia also reversed the original Bolshevik education policy that had been based on ‘progressive’ American concepts and returned authority to the schools. In speaking of the campaign against decadence in music,[48] Andrei Zhdanov, Stalin’s cultural adviser, recalled the original Bolshevik education policy, and disparaged it as ‘very leftish’:

At one time, you remember, elementary and secondary schools went in for the ‘laboratory brigade’ method and the ‘Dalton plan’,[49] which reduced the role of the teacher in the schools to a minimum and gave each pupil the right to set the theme of classwork at the beginning of each lesson. On arriving in the classroom, the teacher would ask the pupils ‘What shall we study today?’ The pupils would reply: ‘Tell us about the Arctic’, ‘Tell us about the Antarctic’, ‘Tell us about Chapayev’, ‘Tell us about Dneprostroi’. The teacher had to follow the lead of these demands. This was called the ‘laboratory brigade method’, but actually it amounted to turning the organisation of schooling completely topsy-turvy. The pupils became the directing force, and the teacher followed their lead. Once we had ‘loose-leaf textbooks’, and the five point system of marks was abandoned. All these things were novelties, but I ask you, did these novelties stand for progress?

The Party cancelled all these ‘novelties’, as you know. Why? Because these ‘novelties’, in form very ‘leftish’, were in actual fact extremely reactionary and made for the nullification of the school.[50]

One observer visiting the USSR explained:

Theories of education were numerous. Every kind of educational system and experiment was tried—the Dalton Plan, the Project Method, the Brigade Laboratory and the like. Examinations were abolished and then reinstated; though with a vital difference. Examinations in the Soviet Union serve as a test for scholarship, not as a door to educational privilege.[51]

In particular the amorality inherent in Marxism was reversed under Stalinism. Richard Overy sates of this process:

Changing attitudes to behaviour and social environment under Stalin went hand-in-hand with a changing attitude towards the family… Unlike family policy in the 1920s, which assumed the gradual breakdown of the conventional family unit as the state supplied education and social support of the young, and men and women sought more collective modes of daily life, social policy under Stalin reinstated the family as the central social unit, and proper parental care as the model environment for the new Soviet generation. Family policy was driven by two primary motives: to expand the birth rate and to provide a more stable social context in a period of rapid social change. Mothers were respected as heroic socialist models in their own right and motherhood was defined as a socialist duty. In 1944 medals were introduced for women who had answered the call: Motherhood medal, Second Class for five children, First Class for six; medals of Motherhood Glory in three classes for seven, eight or nine offspring, for ten or more, mothers were justly nominated Heroine Mother of the Soviet Union, and an average of 5,000 a year won this highest accolade, and a diploma from the Soviet President himself.[52]

No longer were husband and wife disparaged as the ‘drunken father’ and the ‘religious mother’, from whom the child must be ‘emancipated’ and placed under state jurisdiction, as Trotsky and the other Old Bolshevik reprobates attempted. Professor Overy states, rather, that ‘the ideal family was defined in socialist-realist terms as large, harmonious and hardworking’. ‘Free love and sexual licence’, the moral nihilism encouraged by Bolshevism during its early phase, was being described in Pravda in 1936 as ‘altogether bourgeois’.[53]

In 1934 traditional marriage was reintroduced, and wedding rings, banned since the 1920s, were again produced. The austere and depressing atmosphere of the old Bolshevik marriage ceremony was replaced with more festive and prolonged celebration. Divorce, which the Bolsheviks had made easy, causing thousands of men to leave their families, was discouraged by raising fees. Absentee fathers were obliged to pay half their earnings for the upkeep of their families. Homosexuality, decriminalised in 1922, was recriminalised in 1934. Abortion, legalised in 1920, was outlawed in 1936, with abortionists liable to imprisonment from one to three years, while women seeking termination could be fined up to 300 roubles.[54] The exception was that those with hereditary illnesses could apply for abortion.[55]

Kulturkampf

The antithesis between Marxist orthodoxy and Stalinism is nowhere better seen than in the attitudes towards the family, as related above, and culture.

Andrei Zhdanov, the primary theoretician on culture in Stalinist Russia, was an inveterate opponent of ‘formalism’ and modernism in the arts. ‘Socialist-realism’, as Soviet culture was termed from 1932,[56] was formulated that year by Maxim Gorky, head of the Union of Soviet Writers.[57] It was heroic, folkish and organic. The individual artist was the conveyor of the folk-soul, in contrast to the art of Western decline, dismissively described in the USSR as ‘bourgeoisie formalism’.[58]

The original Bolshevik vision of a mass democratic art, organised as ‘Proletkult’, which recruited thousands of workers to be trained as artists and writers, as one would train workers to operate a factory conveyor built, was replaced by the genius of the individual expressing the soul of the people. While in The West the extreme Left and its wealthy patrons championed various forms of modernism,[59] in the USSR they were marginalized at best, resulting in the suicide for example of the Russian ‘Constructivist’ Mayakovsky. The revitalisation of Russian-Soviet art received its primary impetus in 1946 with the launching of Zhdanovschina.[60]

The classical composers from the Czarist era, such as Tchaikovsky, Glinka sand Borodin, were revived, after being sidelined in the early years of Bolshevism in favour of modernism, as were great non-Russian composers such as Beethoven, Brahms and Schubert.[61] Maxim Gorky continued to be celebrated as ‘the founder of Soviet literature and he continued to visit the USSR, despite his having moved to Fascist Italy. He returned to Russia in 1933.[62] Modernists who had been fêted in the early days of Bolshevism, such as the playwright, Nikolai Erdman, were relegated to irrelevance by the 1930s.[63]

Jazz and the associated types of dancing were condemned as bourgeoisie degeneracy.[64]

Zhdanov’s speech to the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (Bolshevik) intended primarily to lay the foundations of Soviet music, represents one of the most cogent recent attempts to define culture. Other than some sparse references to Marx, Lenin and internationalism, the Zhdanov speech should rank alongside T S Eliot’s Notes Towards A Definition of Culture[65] as a seminal conservative statement on culture. The Zhandov speech also helped set the foundation for the campaign against ‘rootless cosmopolitanism’ that was launched several years later. Zhdandov’s premises for a Soviet music were based on the classical and the organic connexion with the folk, striving for excellence, and expressing lofty values, rejecting modernism as detached from folk and tradition.

And, indeed, we are faced with a very acute, although outwardly concealed struggle between two trends in Soviet music. One trend represents the healthy, progressive principle in Soviet music, based upon recognition of the tremendous role of the classical heritage, and, in particular, the traditions of the Russian musical school, on the combination of lofty idea content in music, its truthfulness and realism, with profound, organic ties with the people and their music and songs – all this combined with a high degree of professional mastery. The other trend is that of formalism, which is alien to Soviet art, and is marked by rejection of the classical heritage under the guise of seeming novelty, by rejection of popular music, by rejection of service to the people in preference for catering to the highly individualistic emotions of a small group of select aesthetes.[66]

While some in the Proletkult, founded in 1917 were of Futurist orientation, declaring like the poet Vladimir Kirillov, for example, that ‘In the name of our tomorrow, we will burn Raphael, we will destroy museums, we will trample the flowers of art’, the Proletkult organisation was abolished in 1932,[67] and Soviet culture was re-established on classical foundations. Khdanov was to stress the classical heritage combined with the Russian folk traditions, as the basis for Soviet culture in his address:

Let us examine the question of attitude towards the classical heritage, for instance. Swear as the above-mentioned composers may that they stand with both feet on the soil of the classical heritage, there is nothing to prove that the adherents of the formalistic school are perpetuating and developing the traditions of classical music. Any listener will tell you that the work of the Soviet composers of the formalistic trend is totally unlike classical music. Classical music is characterised by its truthfulness and realism, by the ability to attain to unity of brilliant artistic form with profound content, to combine great mastery with simplicity and comprehensibility. Classical music in general, and Russian classical music in particular, are strangers to formalism and crude naturalism. They are marked by lofty idea content, based upon recognition of the musical art of the peoples as the wellspring of classical music, by profound respect and love for the people, their music and songs.[68]

Zhdanov’s analysis of modernism in music and his definition of classic culture is eminently relevant for the present state of Western cultural degeneracy:

What a step back from the highroad of musical development our formalists make when, undermining the bulwarks of real music, they compose false and ugly music, permeated with idealistic emotions, alien to the wide masses of people, and catering not to the millions of Soviet people, but to the few, to a score or more of chosen ones, to the ‘elite’! How this differs from Glinka, Chaikovsky, Rimsky-Korsakov, Dargomyjsky and Mussorgsky, who regarded the ability to express the spirit and character of the people in their works as the foundation of their artistic growth. Neglect of the demands of the people, their spirit and art means that the formalistic trend in music is definitely anti-popular in character.[69]

Zhdanov addressed a tendency in Russia that has thrived in The West: that of the ever new and the ‘theoretical’ that is supposedly so profound as to be beyond the understanding of all but depraved, pretentious or commodity-driven artistic coteries in claiming that only future generations will widely understand these artistic vanguards. However, Stalinist Russia repudiated the nonsense; and exposed the emperor as having no clothes:

It is simply a terrible thing if the ‘theory’ that ‘we will be understood fifty or a hundred years hence’, that ‘our contemporaries may not understand us, but posterity will’ is current among a certain section of Soviet composers. If this altitude has become habitual, it is a very dangerous habit.[70]

For Zhdanov, and consequently for the USSR, the classics were a folkish manifestation arising from the soul of the Russian people, rather than being dismissed in Marxian manner as merely products of bourgeoisie culture. In fact, as indicated previously, it was modernism that was regarded as a manifestation of ‘bourgeois decadence’. Zhandov castigated the modernists as elitist, aloof, or better said, alienated from the folk. On the other hand the great Russian classicists, despite their class origins, were upheld as paragons of the Russian folk culture:

Remember how the classics felt about the needs of the people. We have begun to forget in what striking language the composers of the Big Five,[71] and the great music critic Stasov, who was affiliated with them, spoke of the popular element in music. We have begun to forget Glinka’s wonderful words about the ties between the people and artists: “Music is created by the people and we artists only arrange it.” We are forgetting that the great master did not stand aloof from any genres if these genres helped to bring music closer to the wide masses of people. You, on the other hand, hold aloof even from such a genre as the opera; you regard the opera as secondary, opposing it to instrumental symphony music, to say nothing of the fact that you look down on song, choral and concert music, considering it a disgrace to stoop to it and satisfy the demands of the people. Yet Mussorgsky adapted the music of the Hopak, while Glinka used the Komarinsky for one of his finest compositions. Evidently, we shall have to admit that the landlord Glinka, the official Serov and the aristocrat Stasov were more democratic than you. This is paradoxical, but it is a fact. Solemn vows that you are all for popular music are not enough. If you are, why do you make so little use of folk melodies in your musical works? Why are the defects, which were criticised long ago by Serov, when he said that ‘learned’, that is, professional, music was developing parallel with and independently of folk music, repeating themselves? Can we really say that our instrumental symphony music is developing in close interaction with folk music – be it song, concert or choral music? No, we cannot say that. On the contrary, a gulf has unquestionably arisen here as the result of the underestimation of folk music by our symphony composers. Let me remind you of how Serov defined his attitude to folk music. I am referring to his article The Music of South Russian Songs in which he said: ‘Folk songs, as musical organisms, are by no means the work of individual musical talents, but the productions of a whole nation; their entire structure distinguishes them from the artificial music written in conscious imitation of previous examples, written as the products of definite schools, science, routine and reflexes. They are flowers that grow naturally in a given locale, that have appeared in the world of themselves and sprung to full beauty without the least thought of authorship or composition, and consequently, with little resemblance to the hothouse products of learned compositional activity’. That is why the naivete of creation, and that (as Gogol aptly expressed it in Dead Souls) lofty wisdom of simplicity which is the main charm and main secret of every artistic work are most strikingly manifest in them.[72]

It is notable that Zhdanov emphasised the basis of culture as an organic flowering from the nation. Of painting Zhandov again attacked the psychotic ‘leftist’ influences:

Or take this example. An Academy of Fine Arts was organised not so long ago. Painting is your sister, one of the muses. At one time, as you know, bourgeois influences were very strong in painting. They cropped up time and again under the most ‘leftist’ flags, giving themselves such tags as futurism, cubism, modernism; ‘stagnant academism’ was ‘overthrown’, and novelty proclaimed. This novelty expressed itself in insane carryings on, as for instance, when a girl was depicted with one head on forty legs, with one eye turned towards us, and the other towards Arzamas. How did all this end? In the complete crash of the ‘new trend’. The Party fully restored the significance of the classical heritage of Repin, Briullov, Vereshchagin, Vasnetsov and Surikov. Did we do right in reinstating the treasures of classical painting, and routing the liquidators of painting?[73]

The extended discussion here on Russian culture under Stalin is due to the importance that the culture-war between the USSR and the USA took, having repercussions that were not only world-wide but lasting.

Notes

[1] Oswald Spengler, The Hour of Decision (New York: Alfred A Knopf, 1963), 61.

[2] K R Bolton, ‘Jünger and National-Bolshevism’ in Jünger: Thoughts & Perspectives Vol. XI (London: Black Front Press, 2012).

[3] Association for the Study of the Planned Economy of Soviet Russia.

[4] League of Professional Intellectuals.

[5] K R Bolton, ‘Jünger and National-Bolshevism’, op. cit.

[6] Cited by John J Stephan, The Russian Fascists (London: Hamish Hamilton, 1978), 338.

[7] K R Bolton, ‘Francis Parker Yockey: Stalin’s Fascist Advocate’, International Journal of Russian Studies, Issue No. 6, 2010, http://www.radtr.net/dergi/sayi6/bolton6.htm [3]

[8] K R Bolton, ‘Cold War Axis: Soviet Anti-Zionism and the American Right’’ see Appendix II below.

[9] See Chapter III: ‘The Moscow Trials in Historical Context’.

[10] R Service, Comrades: Communism: A World History (London: Pan MacMillan, 2008), 97.

[11] Ibid., 98.

[12] Ibid., 107.

[13] Ibid., 109.

[14] Ibid., 116.

[15] G Dimitrov, Dimitrov and Stalin 1934-1943: Letters from the Soviet Archives, 32, cited by R Service, ibid., 220.

[16] R Service, ibid., 220.

[17] G Dimitrov, op. cit., cited by Service, ibid., 221.

[18] R Service, ibid., 222.

[19] Ibid.

[20] Hungarians.

[21] Richard Overy, The Dictators: Hitler’s Germany and Stalin’s Russia (London: Allen Lane, 2004), 201.

[22] L I Shvetsova, et al. (eds.), Rasstrel’nye spiski: Moskva, 1937-1941: … Kniga pamiati zhertv politicheskii repressii. (‘The Execution List: Moscow, 1937-1941: … Book of Remembrances of the victims of Political Repression’), (Moscow: Memorial Society, Zven’ia Publishing House, 2000), 229.

[23] L Sedov, ‘Why did Stalin Need this Trial?’, The Red Book on the Moscow Trials, http://www.marxists.org/history/etol/writers/sedov/works/red/ch01.htm [4]

[24] . Ibid., ‘Domestic Political Reasons’.

[25] R Service, op. cit., 240-241.

[26] Ibid., 242.

[27] Ibid.

[28] Ibid.

[29] Given that when Trotsky was empowered under Lenin he established or condoned the methods of jurisprudence, concentration camps, forced labour, and the ‘Red Terror’, that were later to be placed entirely at the feet of Stalin.

[30] Karl Marx, ‘Proletarians and Communists’, The Communist Manifesto, (Moscow: Progress Publishers, 1975), 68.

[31] K R Bolton, ‘The State versus Parental Authority’, Journal of Social, Political & Economic Studies, Vol. 36, No. 2, Summer 2011, 197-217.

[32] K Marx, Communist Manifesto, op. cit.

[33] See Chapter V.

[34] L Sedov, op. cit., ‘Reasons of Foreign Policy’.

[35] L Trotsky, The Revolution Betrayed, Chapter 7, ‘Family, Youth and Culture’, http://www.marxists.org/archive/trotsky/1936/revbet/ch07.htm

[36] K R Bolton, ‘The Psychopathology of the Left’, Ab Aeterno, No. 10, Jan,-March 2012, Academy of Social and Political Research (Athens), Paraparaumu, New Zealand. The discussion on Marx and on Trotsky show their pathological hatred of family.

[37] L Trotsky, The Revolution Betrayed, op. cit., ‘The Thermidor in the Family’.

[38] ‘There is no proletarian, not even a communist, movement that has not operated in the interests of money, in the directions indicated by money, and for the time permitted by money — and that without the idealist amongst its leaders having the slightest suspicion of the fact’. Oswald Spengler, The Decline of The West (London: George Allen and Unwin, 1971),Vol. II, 402.

[39] L Trotsky, op.cit.

[40] Ibid.

[41] Ibid.

[42] Ibid.

[43] Ibid.

[44] Ibid.

[45] Ibid.

[46] Ibid.

[47] Ibid.

[48] See below.

[49] A laudatory article on the ‘Dalton Plan’ states that the Dalton School was founded in New York in 1919 and was one of the most important progressive schools of the time, the Dalton Plan being adopted across the world, including in the USSR. It is described as ‘often chaotic and disorganized, but also intimate, caring, nurturing, and familial’. Interestingly it is described as a synthesis of the theories of John Dewey and Carleton Washburne. ‘Dalton School’, http://education.stateuniversity.com/pages/1902/Dalton-School.html [5]

Dewey along with the Trotsky apologist Sidney Hook (later avid Cold Warrior and winner of the American Medal of Freedom from President Ronald Reagan) organised the campaign to defend Trotsky at the time of the Moscow Purges of the late 1930s. See Chapter II below.

[50] A Zhandov, Speech at the discussion on music to the Central Committee of the Communist Party SU (Bolshevik), February 1948.

[51] Hewlett Johnson, The Socialist Sixth of the World (London: Victor Gollanncz, 1939), Book IV, ‘New Horizons’, http://www.marxists.org/archive/johnson-hewlett/socialistsixth/ch04.htm [6]

[52] R Overy, op. cit., 255-256.

[53] Ibid.

[54] Ibid., 257.

[55] Ibid., p. 258.

[56] Ibid., 352.

[57] Ibid., 353.

[58] Ibid.

[59] K R Bolton, Revolution from Above, op. cit., 134-143.

[60] Overy, op.cit., 361.

[61] Ibid., 366-367.

[62] Ibid., 366.

[63] Ibid., 371.

[64] Ibid., 376.

[65] T S Eliot, Notes Towards the Definition of Culture (London: Faber and Faber, 1967).

[66] Zhdanov, op. cit., 6.

[67] Encyclopaedia of Soviet Writers, http://www.sovlit.net/bios/proletkult.html [7]

[68] Zhdanov, op. cit., 6-7.

[69] Ibid., 7

[70] Ibid.

[71] The Big Five – a group of Russian composers during the 1860’s: Balakirev, Mussorgsky, Borodin, Rimsky-Korsakov, Cui.

[72] Zhdanov, op. cit., 7-8.

[73] Ibid., 12.

 


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URL to article: http://www.counter-currents.com/2013/03/stalins-fight-against-international-communism/

URLs in this post:

[1] Image: http://www.counter-currents.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/stalin-the-enduring-legacy.jpg

[2] Stalin: The Enduring Legacy: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1908476443/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=1908476443&linkCode=as2&tag=countercurren-20

[3] http://www.radtr.net/dergi/sayi6/bolton6.htm: http://www.radtr.net/dergi/sayi6/bolton6.htm

[4] http://www.marxists.org/history/etol/writers/sedov/works/red/ch01.htm: http://www.marxists.org/history/etol/writers/sedov/works/red/ch01.htm

[5] http://education.stateuniversity.com/pages/1902/Dalton-School.html: http://education.stateuniversity.com/pages/1902/Dalton-School.html

[6] http://www.marxists.org/archive/johnson-hewlett/socialistsixth/ch04.htm: http://www.marxists.org/archive/johnson-hewlett/socialistsixth/ch04.htm

[7] http://www.sovlit.net/bios/proletkult.html: http://www.sovlit.net/bios/proletkult.html

vendredi, 29 mars 2013

Fascism & the Meaning of Life

Fascism & the Meaning of Life

By Alisdair Clarke

Ex: http://www.counter-currents.com/

Roger Griffin
Modernism and Fascism: The Sense of a Beginning under Mussolini and Hitler [2]
Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2007

grifffi22816791z.jpgRoger Griffin, Professor in Modern History at Oxford Brookes University, first introduced the idea of “Palingenesis” to the field of fascist studies over 15 years ago, making him immediately a leading figure in his chosen vocation. He isolated the syncretic fascist core as being palingenetic, populist ultra-nationalism, with overtones of a phoenix-like heroic rebirth. Since then he has extended and elaborated his theory that essential to the definition of the “fascist minimum” is the notion of national rebirth or renaissance — “myths that generated policies and actions designed to bring about collective redemption, a new national community, a new society, a new man…engineered through the power of the modern state.” — culminating in this masterwork which rightly places fascism at the centre of wider modernist movements.

Epiphanic versus Programmatic Modernism

Griffin’s insights have previously been recognized as audacious and perceptive, no more so than here. Part One of the book tackles the at first seemingly tricky concept of Modernism itself, which Griffin clarifies brilliantly. Modernism’s “common denominator lies in the bid to achieve a sense of transcendent value, meaning of purpose despite Western culture’s progressive loss of a homogeneous value system and overarching cosmology (nomos) caused by the secularizing and disembedding forces of modernization.” Modernization is experienced by those caught up in its slipstream as a relentless juggernaut unzipping the fabric of meaningful existence and leaving in its wake the abyss of permanently unresolved ambivalence. In short, Modernism is defined as a reaction against the decadent[1] nihilism of intellectual, societal and technical modernization.

While Marx, other Leftists and liberals consider modern man’s condition as one of angst and alienation induced by class warfare and industrial production, the Right sees anomie as both the cause and the principle symptom of our modern malaise. “It is the black hole of existential self-awareness in all of us, our fear of ‘the eternal silence of infinite spaces’ that so alarmed [Blaise] Pascal, which produces culture.”

This modern culture is further divided by Griffin into what might be called introvert and extrovert reactions: the introvert reaction is generally individualistic and in Griffin’s expression an “epiphanic modernism” — the path of the artist — while the extrovert, collective reaction is defined as “programmatic modernism.” The latter seeks to change the world and resolve the permanent crisis of modernity (“all that is solid melts into air” – Marx) by a collective act of “reconnection forwards” (Moeller van den Bruck). It is not difficult to make the short step from “programmatic modernism” to fascism; the transcendent politics proposed by van den Bruck at the beginning of the Twentieth Century are not so different from Guillaume Faye’s “Archaic Futurism” at its end. Both are, in the phrase of Guy Debord, “technically equipped archaism.”

roger_griffin.jpgAmongst the epiphanic modernists Griffin includes Nietzsche, Eliot, Joyce, Proust, van Gogh, Kandinsky, and Malevich, but perhaps the truth of Griffin’s argument is demonstrated by the man widely acknowledged as the greatest modern painter: Picasso. In his earlier cubist works, Picasso sought inspiration from the primitivism of African masks, and later in the archetypal Mediterranean symbols of horses and particularly bulls (which surprisingly Griffin doesn’t mention).

Gardening State

Following the exhaustive and enlightening dissection of modernism in Part One, Griffin explores the implications and applied politics in Part Two, where “modernity turbocharged by the conjuncture of the First World War, the Russian Revolution, the collapse of three absolutist regimes and a powerful monarchy, with an influenza epidemic that killed as many as 100 million people world wide had made the modernist drive to ward off the terror of the void — cultural, social and political — a phenomenon of mass culture. The new era would be a creatio ex profundis, an act of creativity defying the void.” Fascism aimed for a complete overhaul, in accordance with Emilio Gentile’s observation of totalitarianism as “an experiment in political domination undertaken by a revolutionary movement.”

Griffin introduces the idea of the pre-War Fascist and National Socialist regimes as “gardening states” striking a successful balance between idyllic ruralism and technocratic modernism, the “compelling new imperative” that it obeyed “to clean up, to sterilize, to re-order, to eliminate dirt and dust” (Frances Saunders). Or neatly, if flippantly, summed up by Lars Lindholm, “For example, the Aryans (i.e. Germans, the blond and blue-eyed) are direct descendants from the Atlantean root-race, whereas the Jews, Negroes, Slavs, and anyone else for that matter, are unfortunate mutants, further away from Homo sapiens than the snottiest gorilla. The reason for all the troubles in this world is the presence of these unsavoury species that the master race should mercifully do away with so that peace and quiet could be restored and life imbued with a bit of style” (PILGRIMS OF THE NIGHT: Pathfinders of the Magical Way [Llewellyn, St. Paul MN, 1993]). It was this same vision of hygienic modernity which inspired the building in London of bright new health centres in Peckham and Finsbury during the 1930s. But mild English pragmatism was no match for German determination, where public buildings were “an act of sacralization symbolized in the toned bodies of Aryan workers showering in the washrooms of newly built hygienic factories or playing football on a KdF sportsground, their camaraderie and zest for life expressing the hope for a young, healthy nation.”

Fascist Aesthetics

Included in the book are illustrations of art and architecture not usually associated with the pre-War Fascist and National Socialist regimes: from the soaring arch designed by Adalberto Libera for the aborted EUR ’42 exhibition in Rome (later ripped-off by Eero Saarinen for the St. Louis Gateway Arch), to the cool steel and glass structure designed by Morpugo encasing the Ara Pacis of Augustus, the 1933 blueprint for the new Reichsbank in Berlin by Gropius, or Baron Julius Evola’s painterly experimentations with Dadaism.

Goebbels is revealed as a fan of Edvard Munch and Fritz Lang, while Le Corbusier submitted plans for the new town of Pontinia in the recently-reclaimed Pontine Marshes. Fritz Todt celebrated Aryan technocratic power in his construction of autobahns and later the Atlantic Wall. Irene Guenther is quoted extolling “Nazi Chic” with fashion displaying “another countenance, one that was intensely modern, technologically advanced, supremely stylized and fashionably stylish” and the Bauhaus influence on the new, burgeoning market in consumer durables is emphasised.

Unlike previous historians of fascism with their simplistic and inflexible frameworks, Griffin admirably demonstrates that “fascism, despite the connotations of regression, reaction and flight from modernity it retains for some academics, is to be regarded as an outstanding form of political modernism,” encapsulating a “deadly serious attempt to realize an alternative logic, an alternative modernity and an alternative morality to those pursued by liberalism, socialism, or conservatism.”

Ambition

Griffin is well aware of the boldness and ambition of his arguments. “Post-modern” academia is notoriously hostile to transdisciplinarity, and historians today are loath to erect grand structures of interpretation and meaning. Few historians are less fashionable than Oswald Spengler, or even Samuel “Clash of Civilizations” Huntington. Griffin is well aware of this problem, and in the introduction he specifically places Modernism and Fascism within the context of “Aufbruch” (a breaking out of conventions). For this reason Griffin’s style is reflexive: he is conscious of the fact that in proposing a new syncretic historical worldview he is in some ways mirroring the dynamics of fascism itself.

Of course, European Identitarians and New Rightists will have no problem with the concept of evolutionary synthesis (it’s no accident that one of the principal English-language New Right websites is called Synthesis [3]), nevertheless Griffin is correctly keen to show and stress that his work is non-totalizing. Overall his style is extremely lucid, and arguments that may appear at first to be mere flights of fancy are revealed as having firm foundations, unlike the convoluted, almost impenetrable, and until recently-fashionable critical theory style of, say, Andrew Hewitt’s Political Inversions: Homosexuality, Fascism and the Modernist Imaginary (1996) or the late Lacoue-Labarthe’s Heidegger, Art, and Politics (1990).

“The sky is falling on our heads”

At the end of his book, Griffin draws attention to a BBC News report from September 1998. “The sky is falling” it announces dramatically (shades of Asterix and Obelix here) “The height of the sky has dropped by 8km in the last 38 years, according to scientists from the British Antarctic Survey. Greenhouse gasses like carbon dioxide are believed to be responsible for creating the effect.” He goes on to speculate, “Had Nietzsche been philosophizing at the beginning of the twenty-first century instead of the end of the nineteenth, amidst Swiss glaciers shrivelling under skies where the abstract art of vapour trails punctures illusions of transcending Good and Evil, maybe he would have ‘rethought all his ideas’ in a different, greener ‘framework’. Instead of railing against the advent of ‘nihilism’, ‘decadence’ and ‘the last man’, he might have realized that the time for any sort of ‘eternal return’ is rapidly running out in a literal, not symbolic sense.”

In the intervening 9 years since that ominous BBC report, our carbon emissions have escalated tremendously while our climate has deteriorated further, thanks to global capitalism, free market economics, liberalism, population increase, mass migration across borders, and above all the profound weakness and myopia in confronting the issue which is inherent to liberal democracies. We need to get a grip.

Note

[1] Not the frivolous, glamourized Sally Bowles Weimar “decadence” that the word conjures up in the minds of many gay men, but rather the very real awareness of decay; that all our greatest achievements as a civilization — the Renaissance, the Age of Discovery, the Moonshots — are behind us.

Source: http://aryanfuturism.blogspot.com/2007/08/fascism-and-meaning-of-life.html [4]


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[2] Modernism and Fascism: The Sense of a Beginning under Mussolini and Hitler: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/140398784X/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=140398784X&linkCode=as2&tag=countercurren-20

[3] Synthesis: http://www.rosenoire.org/

[4] http://aryanfuturism.blogspot.com/2007/08/fascism-and-meaning-of-life.html: http://aryanfuturism.blogspot.com/2007/08/fascism-and-meaning-of-life.html

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jeudi, 28 mars 2013

The Beginning & the End of History

hopliten-und-floetenspieler.jpg

The Beginning & the End of History

By Greg Johnson

Ex: http://www.counter-currents.com/

The duel to the death over honor is a remarkable phenomenon. Animals duel over dominance, which insures their access to mates. But these duels result in death only by accident, because the whole process is governed by their survival instincts, and their “egos” do not prevent them from surrendering when the fight is hopeless. The duel to the death over honor is a distinctly human thing.

Indeed, in his Phenomenology of Spirit, Hegel claims that the duel to the death over honor is the beginning of history—and the beginning of a distinctly human form of existence and self-consciousness.

Prehistoric man is dominated by nature: the natural world around him and the natural world within him, namely his desires. History, for Hegel, is something different. It is the process of (1) our discovery of those parts of our nature that transcend mere animal desire, and (2) our creation of a society in accord with our true nature.

When we fully know ourselves as more than merely natural beings and finally live accordingly, then history will be over. (History can end, because as a process of discovery and construction, it is the kind of thing that can end.) Hegel claimed that history ended with the discovery that all men are free and the creation of a society that reflects that truth.

When two men duel to the death over honor, the external struggle between them conceals an internal struggle within each of them as they confront the possibility of being ruled by two different parts of their souls: desire, which includes the desire for self-preservation, and honor, which demands recognition of our worth by others.

When our sense of honor is offended, we become angry and seek to compel the offending party to respect us. If the other party is equally offended and intransigent, the struggle can escalate to the point where life is at stake.

At this point, two kinds of human beings distinguish themselves. Those who are ruled by their honor will sacrifice their lives to preserve it. Their motto is: “Death before dishonor.” Those who are ruled by their desires are more concerned to preserve their lives than their honor. They will sacrifice their honor to preserve their lives. Their motto is: “Dishonor before death.”

Suppose two honorable men fight to the death. One will live, one will die, but both will preserve their honor. But what if the vanquished party begs to be spared at the last moment at the price of his honor? What if his desire to survive is stronger than his sense of honor? In that case, he will become the slave of the victor.

The man who prefers death to dishonor is a natural master. The man who prefers dishonor to death—life at any price—is a natural slave. The natural master defines himself in terms of a distinctly human self-consciousness, an awareness of his transcendence over animal desire, the survival “instinct,” the whole realm of biological necessity. The natural slave, by contrast, is ruled by his animal nature and experiences his sense of honor as a danger to survival. The master uses the slave’s fear of death to compel him to work.

History thus begins with the emergence of a warrior aristocracy, a two-tiered society structured in terms of the oppositions between work and leisure, necessity and luxury, nature and culture. Slaves work so that the masters can enjoy leisure. Slaves secure the necessities of life so the masters can enjoy luxuries. Slaves conquer nature so masters can create culture. In a sense the whole realm of culture is a “luxury,” since none of it is necessitated by our animal desires. But in a higher sense, it is a necessity: a necessity of our distinctly human nature to understand itself and put its stamp upon the world.

The End of History

Hegel had the fanciful notion that there is a necessary “dialectic” between master and slave that will lead eventually lead to universal freedom, that at the end of history, the distinction between master and slave can be abolished, that all men are potential masters.

Now, to his credit, Hegel was a race realist. He was also quite realistic about the tendency of bourgeois capitalism to turn all men into spiritual slaves. Thus his view of the ideal state, which regulates economic life and reinforces the institutions that elevate human character against the corrupting influences of modernity, differs little from fascism. So in the end, Hegel’s high-flown talk about universal freedom seems unworthy of him, rather like Jefferson’s rhetorical gaffe that “all men are created equal.”

hegel12b.jpgThe true heirs to Hegel’s universalism are Marx and his followers, who really believed that the dialectic would lead to universal freedom. Alexandre Kojève, Hegel’s greatest 20th-century Marxist interpreter, came to believe that both Communism and bourgeois capitalism/liberal democracy were paths to Hegel’s vision of universal freedom. After the collapse of communism, Kojève’s pupil Francis Fukuyama declared that bourgeois capitalism and liberal democracy would create what Kojève called the “universal homogeneous state,” the global political and economic order in which all men would be free.

But both capitalism and communism are essentially materialistic systems. Yes, they made appeals to idealism, but primarily to motivate their subjects to fight for them. But if one system triumphed over the other, that necessity would no longer exist, and desire would be fully sovereign. Materialism would triumph. (And so it would have, were it not for the rise of another global enemy that is spiritual and warlike rather than materialistic: Islam.)

Thus Kojève came to believe that the universal homogeneous state would not be a society in which all men are masters, i.e., a society in which honor rules over desire. Rather, it would be a world in which all men are slaves, a society in which desire rules over honor.

This is the world of Nietzsche’s “Last Man,” the world of C. S. Lewis’s “Men without Chests” (honor is traditionally associated with the chest, just as reason is associated with the head and desire with the belly and points below). This is the postmodern world, where emancipated desire and corrosive individualism and irony have reduced all normative cultures to commodities that can be bought and sold, used and discarded.

This is the end of the path blazed by the first wave of modern philosophers: Thomas Hobbes, John Locke, David Hume, etc., all of whom envisioned a liberal order founded on the sovereignty of desire, in which reason is reduced to a technical-instrumental faculty and honor is checked or sublimated into economic competitiveness and the quest for material status symbols.

From this point of view, there is no significant difference between classical liberalism and left-liberalism. Both are based on the sovereignty of desire. Although left liberalism is more idealistic because it is dedicated to the impossible dream of overcoming natural inequality, whereas classical liberalism, always more vulgar, unimaginative, and morally complacent, is content with mere “bourgeois” legal equality.

In Quentin Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction, a black gangster named Marsellus Wallace bribes a boxer named Butch Coolidge to throw a fight. Butch is a small-timer near the end of his career. If he was going to make it, he would have made it already. So he is looking to scrape up some retirement money by throwing a fight. Marsellus Wallace offers him a large sum of cash to lose in the fifth round. Wallace plans to bet on Butch’s opponent and clean up.

Butch accepts the deal, then Wallace dispenses a bit of advice: “Now, the night of the fight, you may feel a slight sting. That’s pride fuckin’ wit ya. Fuck pride! Pride only hurts, it never helps. Fight through that shit. ’Cause a year from now, when you’re kickin’ it in the Caribbean, you’re gonna say, ‘Marsellus Wallace was right.’” Butch replies, “I’ve got no problem with that, Mr. Wallace.”

The great theorists of liberalism offered mankind the same deal that Marsellus Wallace offered Butch: “Fuck pride. Think of the money.” And our ancestors took the deal. As Marsellus hands Butch the cash, he pauses to ask, “Are you my nigger?” “It certainly appears so,” Butch answers, then takes the money.

In modernity, every man is the nigger, the spiritual slave, of any man with more money than him—to the precise extent that any contrary motives, such as pride or religious/intellectual enthusiasm, have been suppressed. (Marsellus, a black man, calls all of his hirelings niggers, but surely it gives him special pleasure to deem the white ones so.)

But history can never really end as long as it is possible for men to choose to place honor above money or even life itself. And that is always possible, given that we really do seem to have the ability to choose which part of our soul is sovereign.

Note

This is one of several pieces which I am transposing and adapting from various film reviews [2] into stand-alone articles in order to encourage broader dissemination and discussion.


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lundi, 25 mars 2013

L'ENVOL D'UNE PUISSANCE

L'ENVOL D'UNE PUISSANCE

Méridien Zéro a reçu Sylvain Roussillon pour évoquer avec lui l'importance historique de la guerre anglo-américaine de 1812-1814 dans la fondation de la puissance des Etats-Unis.

guerre anglo-américaine, 1814, colonisation, empire anglais

Pour écouter:

http://www.meridien-zero.com/archive/2013/02/16/emission-n-132-l-envol-d-une-puissance.html