The facts were plain: Europe had reached a point of such putrid decomposition that it could no longer save itself, any more than fifth-century Rome could have done.
Michel Houellebecq, Submission
Better a thousand enemies outside the house than one inside.
In Michel Houellebecq’s latest novel, Submission, the France of 2020 elects an Islamic government. Houellebecq has form when it comes to ‘insulting’ Islam, having previously been tried for hate speech and also having made various verboten comments in interviews concerning the Western elites’ favourite brand. But the critics who couldn’t wait to pounce on Submission and its anticipated ‘Islamophobia’ were left empty-handed.
For Houellebecq’s fictional Islamisation of France is no invasion; rather it comes as a welcome relief, the conservative nature of Islam serving as a corrective to the decadent, exhausted wreck France has become in the novel, as well as in reality. I have reviewed Submission more fully here, but for our present purpose it is sufficient to say that the novel does not paint a picture of an Islamic invasion of Europe, rather the acquiescence of an exhausted land mass to an invigorating and organising new cultural presence. The Islamists in Submission come not brandishing the whip of shariah but bring instead a conservative order France did not know it needed.
Let us suppose, however, both that there is a more malevolent, planned Islamic invasion of Europe, a revanchist quest for the mythical caliphate, and also that it will not be met with the weary acceptance of Houellebecq’s novel. Certainly, the more pungent areas of what Thomas Harris describes as ‘the damp floor of the internet’ are rife with proclamations that the current migrant crisis is a second wave of Islamic invaders working in conjunction with a fifth column whose beach-head is already established from Malmö to Merthyr Tydfil. Even if that supposed invasion is a demographic one, playing off the gradual importation of fecund Muslim families against the sub-replacement-rate tendencies of Western Europe, there is more than a possibility that Muslims, believing as they apparently do in the metaphysics both of the afterlife and the sanctity of Allah’s plan, are happy to play the long game.
What sort of Europe are they aiming to conquer? The strong horse of bin Laden’s equestrian metaphor, or its weaker sibling?
If you were the subject of an invasion, you would hope for one thing more than any other; that your people were both strong and prepared. Let us assume, for a moment, that you are an ISIS warlord who wishes to turn Europe to Islam by whatever means. How would you rate the Europeans – and Europeans are always ‘rating’ things, from phone calls to a bank to electoral candidates to schools to holiday homes – in terms of strength and preparation?
Our warlord, steeped in Koranic law and with a resolve unfound and unfindable in the modern West, would be amazed at what he saw. For he has chanced across a Europe so decadent – and ‘decadence’ is a musical term which is utterly appropriate here – that it is positively inviting its own destruction, as though sub-consciously it knows that its own demise is necessary, that its time has come, like Faust or the Roman Empire.
He would find a West whose ‘most powerful man’ tells his countrymen that ‘the future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam’. He would find a Europe feminised, homosexualised, addicted to shallow consumerism, bereft of spiritual ideals, a world where children rule over adults. He would find the world’s leading broadcaster, the BBC, with a political correspondent called Faisal Islam. He would be amazed at a university system which, instead of teaching its students the glories of their own culture, curse and demonise that very culture, preferring instead the censorious, almost Koranic world of safe spaces, micro-aggressions and trigger warnings attached to certain haram texts, usually those written by white men.
Our pakol-hatted, fiercely bearded imam of the plains would wonder openly, perhaps while cleaning down his scimitar, at the spectacle of the President of the United States, with its famous second amendment, openly trying to disarm its citizens instead of arming and training them to fight and defeat the caliphate our man longs to bring. He would scratch his head at the open arms with which the European elites greet their conquerors, the longing of the British Prime Minister for a Muslim replacement for himself, the fact that the outlawing of the supposed effects of the charlatan word ‘Islamophobia’ was drawing ever closer, scarcely opposed save for a handful of counterjihadis.
And he would know he had won, if not now, then soon. Expecting to find a weak horse, he would be staggered to find merely an empty stable. And he would be satisfied that he was right on a number of counts. Firstly, democracy is, as he has long been taught by his elders, a sham. The actual people of Europe want less Islam, a lot less. Their rulers, however, want more, much more, and the people seem absolutely powerless to stop them. If this is democracy, it is suicidal. Secondly, the dar al Islam really is superior to the dar al harb. One of Houllebecq’s characters quotes the Nietzsche of that incendiary book, The Antichrist;
‘If Islam despises Christianity, it has a thousandfold right to do so; Islam at least assumes that it is dealing with men…’
Again, I have considered this overlooked snippet of Nietzsche here. As for men, you will be hard put to find any in Europe or America, despite its macho rap stars and footballers. Western men have been all but emasculated by state-sanctioned militant feminism which has left its men, as were, thoroughly disgusted with womankind, and anxious to be rid of them; hence the lagging childbirth rate.
A good friend once told me to get an old service revolver because one day we would see jihadis running down Croydon High Street. I laughed. It does not seem so funny now.