The Strange Death of Europe: Immigration, Identity, Islam by Douglas Murray (Bloomsbury, 343pp, £18.99)
First published last year, Douglas Murray’s elegant, coolly penetrating and devastatingly accurate portrayal of a continent committing suicide, The Strange Death of Europe, has become a huge bestseller. It is now required reading for anyone who wishes to think seriously about the future of our British and European homeland – and to begin to fight for its survival.
Douglas Murray himself has created many enemies among the liberal elite through his honesty and truthfulness, and they would love to dismiss him as a far-right crank, or even a ‘fascist’ or a ‘neo-Nazi’ – the usual way for the intellectually lazy Establishment to silence dissenters. But this is quite impossible – which is why he is such a powerful voice.
Educated at Eton and Oxford, the author of a distinguished biography of Oscar Wilde’s amour, Lord Alfred Douglas, and now a regular contributor to mainstream publications such as the Wall Street Journal, the Sunday Times and the Spectator (where he is Associate Editor), Murray is far too prominent a figure to be ignored, or silenced with slander. And his book, with its calm analysis, its pages of footnotes and scrupulously accurate facts and figures, is impossible for the cultural nihilists on the left to refute.
‘Europe is committing suicide,’ begins the book. ‘Or at least its leaders have decided to commit suicide. Whether the European people choose to go along with this is, naturally, another matter.’
The critical seriousness of our situation is placed before us from the very start. Murray understand the European Disaster in all its complexities, and yet some simple, key themes emerge again and again. Europe has experienced a calamitous fall in native birth rates, at the same time as trying to ‘make up’ that population loss by the import of immigrants, largely from Africa and Asia, and largely from cultures so different to that of Europe – especially Islamic cultures – that they cannot possibly continue the Culture of the West. Rather they will, as immigrant peoples and assertive colonizers always do, bring their own culture in its stead, and destroy ours in the process. This is already happening, whether it is Europe’s new settlers demanding an end to free speech with a mixture of wounded feelings and violent threats, or actively pulling down the statues and monuments of our own ancestral heroes: Cecil Rhodes at Oxford, or even Nelson’s Column in Trafalgar Square, as the African leftist Afua Hirsch has demanded.
Meanwhile other advanced countries have also experienced sudden contractions of population due to falling birth rates – most notably Japan – yet have managed things quite differently, without recourse to culture-changing, and finally culture-eradicating, immigration. There is nothing ‘natural’ or ‘inevitable’ about immigration to the West, as Leftists like to pretend.
Another key point that Murray makes repeatedly, is that this colossal change in European society has taken place against the will of the native people, whose rights and interests have been utterly ignored: a colossal, historic injustice, still barely discussed in public.
Well, Murray discusses it. He cites numerous polls from across the continent in which the clear majority of people asked, declare their opposition to mass immigration, Islamification, and to the idea that Islam can ever be ‘compatible’ with the values of the Western values. In 2011 and YouGov poll ‘found that 67 per cent of the British public believed that immigration over the past decade has been “a bad thing for Britain.” Only 11 per cent believed it had been “a good thing.”’
On the other hand it would be quite impossible for pro-immigrationists, no matter how hard they searched, to find a single poll from the past sixty years in which a nation of European people ever once said, ‘Yes, we would like our culture and our people to become a minority in our own country.’
The very idea is preposterous. And yet it is happening. In London, Leicester, Luton and Slough, the white British are already a minority. Birmingham will follow very soon. It’s as if, says Murray, Britain’s politicians have said to the white British, ‘Get over it. It’s nothing new. You were terrible. Now you are nothing.’
The same story is being repeated across Western Europe. No wonder the electorate are so profoundly disillusioned with establishment politicians, and looking for new ones to support, who will actually do what they want. No wonder democracy is in crisis. Unwanted immigration itself, says Murray, has been ‘one of the key causes of the breakdown in trust between the electorate and their political representatives.’
Finally Murray is acute on the way in which in one sense – and it is painful but essential to admit it – those who despise today’s Europe, and seek to colonize it for the Empire of Islam, are not wholly wrong. Many aspects of Western popular culture aredespicable and decadent, having nothing to do with the West’s glorious heritage and greatness, and everything to do with self-indulgence, shallow hedonism and consumerist pornification.
‘To immerse oneself in popular culture for any length of time is to wallow in an almost unbearable shallowness.’ (A few minutes of watching Love Island will soon show this.) As an aside, Murray greatly admires the French novelist Michel Houellebecq, whose scathing, depressing but sometimes bitterly funny analyses of Western moral collapse have no equal among today’s novelists.
Had mass immigration from the Third World taken place to the West at some high watermark of our confidence and achievements – in late Victorian times, say – things might have gone differently. But the Victorians would never have permitted it, of course. Only weak, self-doubting nations permit such things. And it is a part of the tragedy of post-war immigration that it has taken place just at a time when so much of our most garish and most noticeable native culture is so contemptible.
But of course it is also true that many aspects of our new immigrant culture are also disgusting. When an 11 year old white girl is branded with the letter ‘M’ on her forehead to show who her owner is – by a man called Mohammed – and the British court hears that the branding was done ‘to make her his property and to ensure others knew about it,’ then we are quite right to question the benefits of diversity.
This happened, says Murray, not in some Saudi or Pakistani backwater, but in Oxfordshire. The British Establishment then spent years ignoring it or covering up this hideous child abuse, and dozens more cases like it – while often preaching about gender equality and women’s rights. Meanwhile in 2009, Norway’s police announced that ‘all reported rapes’ in Oslo that year had been committed by immigrants. Every single one.
Celebrate diversity? To do so is, literally, to celebrate the rape of one’s own people.
This not of course to say that all immigrants are rapists: but in Oslo in 2009, it is a sobering thought, that all rapists were immigrants. If the culture of non-European immigrants runs along these lines, if women are regarded as mere chattels and objects of male ownership – as indeed they are – then why would we even countenance such immigration? No one’s rights are being trampled upon if we prevent it happening, if we say: ‘No more. You do not have a right to come and settle permanently in Europe, and we do not wish it.’ But many rights, our rights, are trampled upon if this catastrophic movement of peoples is permitted to continue.
Quite apart from wholesale cultural and then population replacement, there is terrorism, about which so many lies and obfuscations have been peddled by the complicit mainstream media. Murray reminds us that after the dreadful Paris bombings, 90% of the Muslim students in Brussels rejoiced and called the terrorists ‘heroes.’
In Britain, just after the terrible Charlie Hebdo massacre, a quarter of Muslims polled said they approved of violence against those who depict Mohammed (ComRes poll, 2015). The BBC then reported that three-quarters of Muslims ‘oppose’ such violence: typical of the way in which the corrupt mainstream media spins its fake news. The real news story here is that a disastrous one quarter of Britain’s Muslim population has so little regard for British law and ancient traditions of free speech, that they support the killing of anyone who departs from the rules of their religion. ‘The religion of peace,’ as we are so often told.
While Europe’s immigrant population grows increasingly and violently hostile to the host culture, the native people are gradually becoming more disillusioned. The foolish utopian dream of a happy rainbow Europe retreats ever further our beloved continent grows daily more ‘chaotic, fractured and unrecognisable.’
Europe’s political leaders, as Murray notes astutely, are currently reacting to this growing and disastrous gulf opening up across Europe, by treating not the primary but the secondary cause: ‘Their priority has been not to clamp down on the thing to which the public are objecting but, rather, to the objecting public.’
One sees this in action every day.
Toward the end of his superb book, Murray holds out some faint hope that, somehow, Europe may yet re-assert itself. For the West – that is, Europe and her successor states in Canada and the USA, Australia and New Zealand – is still great. Its heritage is quite unparalleled, its resources are there for anyone to draw on: its incomparable wealth of artistic treasures, great literature, its science and philosophy and glorious history – not to mention its generally under-rated economic and military power. The problem remains our leaders and their grip on power, so sunk in barely believable levels of intellectual dishonesty and moral cowardice, pathological self-hatred and a will to death.
For those who are ‘enlightened,’ who have as the saying is ‘taken the Red Pill,’ the world that Murray reveals, only confirms in superb detail and with brilliant clarity, the seriousness of our situation. Today’s identitarian activists are serious already – but still they should read, mark and inwardly digest this tremendous book, and pass it on to their friends with urgent recommendations.
We have already recognized that our contemporary culture is base and despicable, which is why more and more young Identitarians and Patriots are committed to the values of self-cultivation, self-improvement, and trying to make themselves worthy of the achievements of their honoured European ancestors – whether it’s throwing weights around in the gym, running up mountains, or reading and pondering Gibbon’s Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire.
As Murray shows, we live in critical, dangerous and yet strangely thrilling times – one of those periods in history when there is everything to fight for.