The following was written by Henry Rochejaquelein, a community organizer based in the Vendée region of France. It is one of the best pieces of writing we’ve ever read at Citizen Warrior.
THE WORLD’S long wake for Norway has been hard for every friend of freedom. We should avoid self-pity by remembering those who suffer much more than we: the family members of those unarmed civilians murdered by a drug-addled, video-game obsessed plagiarist who still lived at home with his mother. There are a few sick souls out there who have expressed admiration for Anders Breivik; some racialists at the anti-Semitic site Occidental Dissent have taken to comparing Breivik to Batman — a self-made millionaire who bravely took action to save Gotham City. The fact that these people, like Breivik, take their inspiration from comic books speaks for itself. Like him, these cranks raise their sedentary pulses through boyish revenge and power fantasies. Like him, they should stick to dressing up like Jedi knights and dueling with plastic light sabers. They should leave questions of life and death, culture and the future, to those whose emotional age has at some point exceeded sixteen.
But once we have prayed for the dead, and grieved with the living, we have every reason to consider the implications of this slaughter — not so much for ourselves, since most of us are doing fine, but for the next generation of Europeans and Americans who will have to face a continuous escalation of Islamic self-assertion. The signs are clear: In just one day, the New York Times reported that (as columnists here had glumly predicted) politicized, intolerant Muslims now dominate the Egyptian revolution, and that the last batch of secular officers had resigned from the Turkish military, freeing its pro-Sharia president to remake that NATO member (and would-be EU member) as a militant Muslim state. Two countries which the U.S. had counted on bastions of moderation and allies in the “war against terror” are now being transformed in the image of Saudi Arabia and Iran. Syria, whose despotism for self-serving reasons has long protected some religious minorities, is sliding toward the brink of collapse, whose outcome will be a Sunni sharia state. Terror attacks continue to escalate throughout the world, from Nigeria to Pakistan, while radical clerics exploit Western liberties to remain at large.
Meanwhile, the peaceful efforts of patriotic citizens of Western countries to limit the assertiveness of orthodox Muslims who favor sharia have come under a terrible, blood-red cloud thanks to the actions of a single, vain pseudo-intellectual, who was willing to kill in order to draw attention to himself and happy to tarnish the reputations of dozens of non-violent writers and activists, whose ideas he shoplifted to provide himself with a manifesto. Just as Nat Turner’s (much more justified) rebellion set back by decades the cause of anti-slavery activists in the South, so Breivik’s murders have for the moment threatened to smear us all with his gore.
Robert Spencer has shown by example the right response: Express honest horror at the attacks, point out how they were in no way grounded in anything any reputable counter-jihad scholar or activist has ever written, and refuse to play the game of media hacks who are trying to silence us. Just as Martin Luther King did not fold up his non-violent movement when some black nationalists shot at cops, so we will not shelve our pens because some sociopath took up his gun.
Does the fact that some maniacs will murder for a cause spoil it? Think back to John Brown, who butchered pro-slavery activists in their beds; to the U.S. soldiers who as they crushed the army that raped Nanking collected human skulls as souvenirs; to the anti-Communist death squads funded by the CIA; to the city-busting thermonuclear missiles that targeted hundreds of millions of Russian civilians, preventing Soviet conquest and deterring World War III. Men have used dubious means to promote every cause in human history; was every cause thus unjust?
One of the things we so object to about Islam is that its own sacred scriptures endorse, even enjoin, the use of such evil means. To reject them for a Muslim is to make himself a heretic. That simple, ugly truth is so shocking to Western sensibilities that slothful citizens and cowardly politicians find it more convenient to pretend it isn’t so — to claim that when freedom-fighters like Robert Spencer, Bat Ye’or, and Geert Wilders simply report on acts of violence or their origins, they are inciting similar violence. Afraid of the mortal message, dhimmis would kill the messengers. In fact, they know perfectly well that real counter-jihadists aren’t dangerous. (No editor lives under 24-hour guard for publishing a Robert Spencer cartoon.) We are, in cold fact, a religion of peace — and we won’t kill you for saying otherwise.
I have seen some men on our side slide close to despair, or calculate that they must save their skins in the current purge by denouncing innocent allies. Some commenters on this site (Jihad Watch, where this article first appeared) have openly wondered if Islam might not be doomed in fact to win. So Whittaker Chambers feared of Communism during the Cold War. When our own society is fractured and unsure of itself, and its elites are dominated by those who seem sympathetic to the enemy, it is easy to conclude that the totalitarians will prevail. They are so much more disciplined and motivated. They are willing to die for their cause; on our side, men are frightened to write a letter.