Brendon Tarrant on 15th March 2019 killed 50 innocent Muslims during Friday prayer in two Christchurch mosques, New Zealand. He broadcasted the killings live and left a 74-page manifesto describing a typical white supremacist ideology.
It saddens me a lot to see the amount of hatred white supremacist have towards anyone who is a non-European origin, and especially those Muslim communities living in Europ, America, Canada or Australia. The trend is rising, and Christchurch might not be the last shootings.
Here I attempt to understand the mind of Tarrant and millions of white supremacist who cheer and legitimize violence against any non-Nordic races. In an earlier draft, I kept the subtitle of this article as “Perspectives of Islam”, then I realized how difficult that claim is, as Islam is too big a concept to claim authoritative knowledge about. So, here is a humble opinion of a random Muslim on this rising racial movement, and some possible suggestions on how to live a better future with less hatred. I try my best to benefit from some teachings I learned from the Quran or history.
Arrogance is the root cause
Arrogance has been a leading driving force behind many of racial prejudices. The problem of arrogance goes back to the very moment Adam was created. God created Satan from fire and Adam from clay. When God commanded Satan to bow in honor to Adam, Satan immediately played the racial tune and said to Lord refusing to bow down: “I am better than he; You created me from fire, and You created him from clay”.
The same tune is being played today by white supremacists who consider the Nordic race better than the rest of the people. This (wrong) perception led the white man to take the burden of civilizing other inferior nations.
While white supremacists take their arrogance to extreme levels, other conservatives and far-right politicians might conceal similar hatred within their hearts, although cannot openly demonstrate violence.
For example, this “arrogance factor” helps us understand the stand of these groups against Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minnesota). To them she is a complex combination of many crimes, such as these seven deadly sins:
- Wearing hijab
- Getting elected as a USA House Rep.
- Questioning and exposing white politicians publicly, and
- (the mother of all crimes) exposing the Israeli lobby in the USA
These were too humiliating for a white man like Elliot Abrams to endure and as such he reached the same tipping point that made Satan burst out with anger and refuse to bow down to Adam in front of God.
Western Europe and White Man’s Burden
Tarrant’s manifesto can be summarized in one word: Europe. Anyway, he chose to end his manifesto with the phrase “Europa Rises”.
Here is a super condensed history of Europe (read Nordic Europe):
- Europe was hibernating in deep sleep throughout dark, cold, and long winters. (AD 500–1000)
- They woke up feeling hungry, looking around they found the best place to plunder was neighboring Muslim lands. (the first Series of Crusade Wars)
- That encounter with a high civilization kindled in European mind the need to mimic Muslims in scientific exploration and rationalism (Renaissance) Feeling empowered, it was now time to explore the seas and plunder foreign lands, enslaving people, building settlements and colonies, and wiping out indigenous civilizations (Portuguese, Spanish, French and English colonization)
- Through this colonization process, America, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa became part of the elite pan European white settling countries. As for the other colonies in Asia and Africa, and after the two World Wars, Europeans left these countries but kept a secret weapon to keep enslaving these population under the disguise of Humanitarian Aid. (Welcome: UN, World Bank, IMF, et al.)
Before the advent of the British, my country Bangladesh was rich and happy. Not only its riches were plundered by the Europeans, but my countrymen were also forced to build railroads, work in plantations and coal mines, and fight for the British queen in far and distant foreign lands. These people were forcibly relocated to the tiniest islands in all oceans. As they were coming from High Civilization and Culture, one thing they preserved was their religion.
So, today when the third generation Bangladeshis in East London (or a Moroccan in French, etc.) want to attach to their culture and practice Islam by building (or purchasing an abandoned Church and converting to) a mosque, Nordics like Tarrant considers it an invasion!
Nobody has elected the white man to take the burden to civilize the nations, and Kipling was damn arrogant in his “White Man’s Burden” poem:
Take up the White Man’s burden —
Send forth the best ye breed —
Go send your sons to exile
To serve your captives’ need
To wait in heavy harness
On fluttered folk and wild —
Your new-caught, sullen peoples,
Half devil and half child
If Tarrant wants to drive the third generation Muslims out of Europe — the grandsons of the same people the European brought to serve the industrial revolution — then as a prerequisite, he should ask the European settlers first to leave the Americas, Canada, South Africa, Australia, and New Zealand and issue an official apology to the indigenous people in those countries.
It’s the birthrates!
Thus started Tarrant his manifesto. His title “Great Replacement” also alludes to the same fact, which he borrowed from the French extremist Renaud Camus. Tarrant was very clear about the existential threat he and his fellow white supremacist share about the demographic projection in Europe given the fertility rates of Muslims vis-a-vie Nordic race.
I can not help much if God has endowed Muslim women’s womb with such a blessing, despite all the campaigns of the World Bank’s policymakers in Washington DC for “family planning” in developing countries.
After all, it seems God’s promise to Abraham in Genesis 22:17 was meant to be for the branch of Ishmael:
I will surely bless you, and I will multiply your descendants like the stars in the sky and the sand on the seashore.
Given that, It would be foolish -to say the least- to influence any demographic changes by taking a few lives here and there from a nation that counts in billions, and has such a high birthrate.
Most of my readers will brand me crazy if I propose that if Nordics convert into Islam, then their birthrate would increase! Don’t rush to leave the article; I have an explanation.
In Chapter 108 of the Quran (which is by no coincidence is named the Plenty -or al-Kawthar) verse no. 3, Allah says:
Those who hate you (O Muhammad), his descendants will be cut off.
Scandinavian countries — the birthplace of Nordic Europa- were at the forefront of mocking prophet Muhammad (remember Denmark) and spreading Islamophobic rhetoric. It seems little surprising then that this very region is the greatest sufferer of negative birthrate among the European population. I think it would be sensible then to connect these dots, and benefit from the above verse, and change attitude towards Prophet Muhammad, and get the birthrates positive! Maybe I am asking for too much :).
Clash of Civilization, and back to the Norm
Huntington published his “Clash of civilization” essay at the height of multilateralism after the fall of Berlin wall. He envisioned a world that clashes over culture. He was subject to fierce criticism. Nobody wanted to return to a world of extreme nationalism that kindled two World Wars. After the clouds of dust settled and Russia got out-of-scene, the USA wanted an absolute hegemony through its multilateralism (on top of militarism). After 26 years (since the publication of that “clash” essay), we are gradually accepting the proposition. Foreign Affairs (the very magazine that first published the essay of the clash) made the theme of the current issue (March/April 2019) “The New Nationalism” with welcoming article titles like “Why Nationalism Works” or “Building a Better Nationalism,” etc.
The lifespan of an individual is very short comparing to the lifespan of historical trends. Thus, when we experience the status of our current world, we often generalize it to be the norm. A unipolar world without clash is abnormal. Nobody wants a disease, but the disease is inevitable and is normal. A world free of disease is abnormal. The best attempt then is to prevent as much harm as possible and be prepared when the inevitable arrives.
Tarrant et al., and all populist movements get it correct, that the democracy which the neoliberal elites try to sell today is bogus, and meant to squeeze whatever penny is remaining from the poor and making the rich become super-rich. They got fed up with a rule-based world that is run by big corporations assisted by politicians and media.
What remains essential now is to answer questions like a clash between which civilizations? And what is the rule of this game?
I do not want to pretend to be a geopolitical scholar and offer an academic answer to such a big question, and besides, it is not meant to be the topic of this article.
So, let me bring the topic home and bring Tarrant with it. In the arena of culture and civilization, what wins is convincing ideas (not military power) and how close that culture is to the hearts and minds of the society. According to Tarrant and his tribe, the current Western civilization reached a hazardous level and on the verge to collapse. In his manifesto (page 4):
There are myriad reasons behind the decline in fertility rates and the destruction of the traditional family unit. We must inevitably correct the disaster of hedonistic, nihilistic individualism. Paul Joseph Watson — a popular white supremacist — for example, elaborates more in his recent video:
The law of physics that dictates the movement of anything from high pressure to low pressure seems to work well in case of ideas and culture. The culture that promotes high values of family traditions, ethics, moral, and spirituality naturally diffuse these values towards any culture that is low in these values. This seems very problematic to Tarrant. He cannot tolerate if a fellow Nordic with fair-hair and light-colored eyes chose willingly to join the folds of Muhammad. Here is what Tarrant has to say about them (page 12).
The only muslim (sic.) I truly hate is the convert, those from our own people that turn their backs on their heritage, turn their backs on their cultures, turn their back on their traditions and became blood traitors to their own race. These I hate.
On that Friday, if Tarrant chose to go to the Al Noor Mosque -not to shoot- rather listen to the Friday sermon, he surely would have received lots of #HelloBrother greetings. Alas, he did not let it happen and shot the first greeter.
Islam recognizes races, and would never oppose if someone wants to refrain from inter-racial marriage to preserve the breed. What Islam abhors is the mentality of Satan “I am better than he,” fueled by racial prejudices.
Listen to this divine call to all people (Quran 49:13):
O people! We created you from a male and a female, and made you races and tribes, that you may know one another.
The beautiful rainbow our cosmopolitan cities has today because of immigration and co-existence of several cultures is an excellent opportunity to “know one another.” It’s lots of fun if, on a casual meeting Tarrant told Abdul about a Viking legend, and Abdul told Tarrant the story of Prophet Muhammad’s migration from Mecca to Medina, for example.
It is the intellect and rationalism that distinguishes the Human race from animals. We — as the collective human race- reached to whatever we reached today was due to our intellect and not our muscle power. Muscle power works among animals in the jungle. Using physical power alone in the world of Human societies may win short battles, but never a long war.
The contact between Islam and Europe was long and is meant to continue until the end of times. In the earlier contact between the two, Islam gave Europe a precious gift: Renaissance. Arabs not only translated Greek literature, rather corrected many misconceptions and added-value to almost all field of science and technology. European got these from Arabs free-of-charge and continued thereafter.
With a little bit of humbleness and the due respect, a student ought to give to his teacher, Islam still has lots of gifts to offer to Europe, not in science and technology but in Moral and Ethics, and a Europe that is deep in “hedonistic and nihilistic individualism” in Tarrant’s words, surely needs them.