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What is the state of the Counterjihad movement? How does it fare? Is it weakening or hardening, spreading or diminishing? These are important questions and I shall here speculate on the answers.
On the face of it, ‘Islamophobia’ would seem to be a booming product. The media (tabloid and broadsheet, print and online) drips with stories bemoaning the violent application of Quranic values. Islamic State is the leading story of our day, as well as the leading concern of Western government. The Rotherham scandal is still evolving and similar cases being dug up elsewhere. Few ordinary people can now be under any illusions about the nature of radical Islamic belief.
But does that mean anything as far as the future is concerned? One can’t fail to notice that Muslims are still entering Europe and settling here by the thousand, and that Muslim organisations are gaining (in the cause of anti-terrorism) deeper and deeper entry into the halls of power. Besides stirring up ill-feeling, what have we actually achieved? Precious little would seem to be the answer.
I’m also beginning to detect a softening in some Counter-Jihad quarters, mild enough for the moment, but real enough to worry about. Formerly radical websites (I won’t name names) are becoming weakly pragmatic, now talking more of ‘integration’ and ‘moderation’ than ‘segregation’ and ‘victory’. One major website, known till now to be a bastion of civilizational confidence, recently launched a project to aid ‘Moderate’ Muslims in redefining their faith to make it ‘compatible’ with European life. This is nothing more than Tariq Ramadan’s ‘Euro-Islam’ idea, repackaged and stamped with new legitimacy. Why is this happening?
Perhaps the market is shrinking, or becoming less angry, deradicalised. Perhaps fewer and fewer people want to read radical anti-Islamic ideas, or feel secure enough to endorse them. Perhaps Islamophobia has ‘punched itself out’. That sounds reasonable to me.
As you may know from personal experience, it is common for people to roll their eyes upon hearing a criticism of Islam these days. While it was once taboo, anti-Islam ideas are now spray-painted on every digital wall, and over time this will bore the imagination whether one agrees with them or not. Anti-Semitism – with its core propositions of Jewish conspiracy and secret control – has likewise been crippled by over-exposure. Everyone is familiar with the claims of Jew-haters; so familiar, that they can never take the claims seriously. Has the same thing occurred with the (real) threat of Islam?
Though despised by history and respected by no-one, Joseph Goebbels is generally considered to have been correct when he wrote that a lie repeated ad infinitum will eventually be accepted as true. I would say, contrariwise, that (in the age of global media) a truth repeated ad infinitum will eventually be regarded as a lie. We all know how disbelief in Global Warming became the default human position. The scientific consensus didn’t change. People just got sick of hearing about it.
Complacency on the Islamic issue will ultimately prove lethal to our civilisation. But it seems human nature, with its inherent weaknesses, overpowers reason to such a degree that we may not be able to do anything about it.