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Friday, December 8, 2023

Patriots, Identitarians, Nationalists and Sovereignists: They must all be positive

Dr. Tom Sunic: What follows is the text of my speech given at the Generation Identity conference in London, UK, July 27, 2019.

Words such as “sovereignty” and “identity,” both belonging to the family of patriotism, have become trendy words among European nationalists of different stripes. They are even used as synonyms along with their new derivatives “sovereignists” and “identitarians” respectively. Many of these verbal derivatives did not even exist in the English language until recently. In the German language these words, which are of Latin origin, have also come into use recently—words such as der Patriot, der Identitäre and der Souveränist, although they often sound odd and un-German to traditional German ears. These replacement words for the old word “nationalist” owe their birth to two political and historical factors: 1) The German language, shortly after World War II, was subjected to a profound cleansing process carried out by the occupying Allied forces and their re-educational apparatchiks, the latter mostly recruited among academics of the newly re-established, Jewish-dominated Marxist Frankfurt school. Their task was to impose on the German people a new political vocabulary, a new way of communication — and a new identity. 2) The old German words associated with the notion of patriotism such as the German adjective “völkisch” or the compound noun “Volksgenosse,” which stands for a fellow patriot, or the unique German word “artfremd,” which means an alien of different biological stock, or the word “gleichrassig,” meaning someone of the same racial stock, vanished overnight in 1945. Ever since they have become crimethink words banned from public discourse. Henceforth many modern German and other European nationalists, burdened by the stigma of the National-Socialist past, prefer to use imported words such as “patriots” or “identitarians” instead, well aware that these new words can provide them with a modicum of political legitimacy in the mainstream media.

The new word “identitiarian” sounds quite romantic and is often used by patriots today all over Europe and America although it is not specific enough. Our identity cannot be unitary; it can have multiple facets. How should we define our identity? In singular or in plural? For example, in my case, which identity comes first and which one comes second? Am I first a Croat or an American? Or a hyphenated Croat-American? Or a European-White-American? On the professional level I can also display triple or quadruple identities; I can first define myself as a writer, as a professor, a translator, or as a political activist. On the religious level, my identity may first be Catholic or agnostic. And finally, there is also my racial identity, which is being dismissed as a social construct today by the majority of System-friendly scholars and the mainstream media. There are, fortunately, a few prominent scholars today who consider race the first marker of man’s identity. Even a half-blind man when stepping out of this London hotel can notice swarms of individuals of different races milling around.

So which identity should I pick first in my case? Should it be based on my racial, national, political, religious, sexual, or professional preferences?

Finally, how do other people define my self-described identity or my self-proclaimed patriotism—especially if these people are not of my ingroup or of my race? They may often be more aware of my Otherness and my Whiteness and my Uniqueness than I am. I may wish them to become my friends; I may go to great lengths to preach their integration in my home country, but it is likely that they may view me as their enemy. They may be exemplary citizens and my good neighbors; but if there is a state of emergency or a shift in demographic trends or political culture, they may turn into my mortal enemies.

Let us also look at the notion of sovereignty, a notion that is closely allied with the notion of identity and patriotism. For instance many English patriots or sovereignists, and rightfully so, do not like the Brussels bureaucracy poking its nose into the British affairs. At the same time however, they consider it right and natural that London should have the last word in defining the Irish, Scottish or Welsh identity or sovereignty. On the one hand, English sovereignists are justifiably angry about their endangered identity in the European Union. Fair enough. On the other hand, they do not object to the assimilation of Welsh or Irish patriots in Great Britishness.

A better example is the new-born state of Croatia. Many Croat patriots—or let’s call them Croat nationalists—get upset when some high EU politician pontificates about the possibility of the reconstitution of the third Yugoslav state. Given the bitter experience many Croat patriots had in former multiethnic Yugoslavia, it is comprehensible why they are keen to uphold Croat identity and Croat state sovereignty at all cost. Yet many of those same Croat sovereignists or nationalists, while rejecting the notion of the revival of the Yugoslav state, gladly accept Brussels decrees and ukases and don’t seem to be too much worried that more than half of Croatia‘s legislative provisions are being dictated from Brussels with little Croatian input. This was not the case even in communist Yugoslavia, where Croatian communists enjoyed some margin of maneuvering when introducing their local legislation in the federal legal provisions of the now defunct state of Yugoslavia.

We could enumerate more examples. The French sovereignists are a case in point; they must be applauded for upholding their Frenchness and for being hostile to the Brussels bureaucracy. Yet on a sub-national level, French “souverainistes”—as they call themselves—are not too eager to talk about Catalan, Corsican, Basque, Alsatian or Breton souverainistes; nor are they willing to endorse their claims to separate statehood. In other words, they regard local identities of these peoples in France as a secondary love affair which, if going too far, may threaten the sovereignty of France. Let us face it; local European patriots waging wars against bigger European imperial patriots have cost Europeans millions of their lives over the last millennium.

On the external and institutional level, the use or misuse of the notion of identity is getting even more complicated. European sovereignists made a good breakthrough during the recent European Parliament elections, particularly Le Rasseblement National  in France and the Vlaams Belang in Belgium. However, let’s face the fact that we seldom discuss: The liberal parliamentarian system, since the end of World War II ceaselessly claims to be the best of all worlds. Yet in reality this is hardly the case. Overall, all parties, all over the European political landscape, without any exception, once in office have a great difficulty in implementing their program—assuming that they really intend to do so in the first place. As far as the possible entry of nationalist parties into their respective governments is concerned, this is almost an impossible task. We have seen over the last seventy years various legal barriers erected to keep nationalist parties out of power. We have seen various smear campaigns conducted against them by the media, and various “cordons sanitaires” put in place by the System in order to keep them off the main political stage. If we add to that the factor of globalism and the omnipotence of various supranational bodies such as the WTO, the IMF, the EU, the UN, and the power of global financial markets, we must ask ourselves how and to what extent are our claims to our sovereignty, our identity and our patriotism viable or feasible at all.

The good news is that even the hard-core advocates of the System must admit that their much-praised liberal parliamentarian democracy is facing today a very serious crisis of legitimacy, which can best be observed in the increasing mistrust of the electorate toward the ruling elites and toward the mainstream media. A long time ago, the antiliberal scholar Carl Schmitt predicted that within a representative, indirect democracy, such as we know it today in the UK and elsewhere in the West, the ruling class is bound to become more and more estranged from its electorate. This raises anew the question whether this liberal best-of-all-possible worlds, as the media and our politicians have been telling us every day since the end of the World War II, is indeed any better than its defunct communist alternative.

Before we start delivering some positive and affirmative suggestions as to how to strengthen our patriotism, we must first grasp the main political issue: how to distinguish between our political enemy and our political friend. It has become very popular among European patriots to resort to a false identity-building process by looking solely at the negative consequences of non-European migration instead of examining its root causes. Among European patriots of different stripes, it has become a commonplace to blame the religion of Islam and waves of mostly Muslim migrants for the present ills in Europe and America. However, we should be just as concerned about mass arrival of pious Catholic mestizos from Latin America now storming the American border. These newcomers may be practicing the same religion as we do, but they don’t belong to our bio-cultural stock. And in addition, the most vocal advocates of the arrival of non-Europeans are not the proverbial Antifas, or the media, or the ethnic lobbies, or the globalist financial elites, but the powerful Catholic clergy both in the EU and America.

Private—let alone public—slurs against Islam or against Muslim migrants are nonstarters. I do not want to get involved now in theological disputes about the alleged goodness of Christianity versus alleged badness of Islam as many of our friends often do. Such a black vs. white picture of the world is a waste a of time and is bound to backfire. Let us keep in mind that White European Christians have also had their track record of violence, and not just in defending against alien Muslim Arabs and Turkish invaders starting in the eighth century all the way to the eighteenth century. Throughout their history Whites have also waged wars of annihilation between and among themselves—from ancient Troy to modern east Ukraine. Neither should we forget that Christianity, just like Islam, had its place of birth in the Middle East and not in Europe.

Our first objective should be to elect friendly politicians and approach media outlets that may be sympathetic to our cause. In addition, we should also support academics and scholars who have provided us with ample empirical proofs about the failure of multiracial society, but who due to their nonconformist views and civic courage had fallen into public disgrace as a result of the machinations of the System.

Our second task should consist in decriminalizing some of our vocabulary and especially the word “race” and thereby facilitate our discussion about our identity. I can change my language, my culture, my country, and my passport. I can also dismiss my cultural heritage. But my inborn genetic and racial heritage I can never dismiss. My heredity and my biology cannot be shrugged off, and to a considerable extent they will determine my behavior, my political choices, and my social preferences. In the coming years we must decide where we stand. Denying my racial identity will not result in my enemy’s denial of his racial identity.

Dr. Tom Sunic is author of several books.

Further reading:

  1. Alain de Benoist, Nous et les autres : Problèmatique de l’identité( 2007)
  2. Tomislav Sunic, Postmortem Report: Cultural Examinations from Postmodernity (2017)
  3. Richard Lynn, Race Differences in Psychopathic Personality: An Evolutionary Analysis (2019)
  4. Carl Schmitt, The Concept of the Political( 1932, 1996)

You can read more here.


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