“Virtually all of the most notorious international terrorist organizations are known to maintain a network presence in Canada.”
~ Canadian Security Intelligence Service, 2003.
“”Osama Bin Laden has publicly identified Canada as a country he believes his followers should attack … He ranked Canada fifth out of seven countries, and every other country on that list has already been attacked.”
~ Robert Wright, National Security Advisor to the Canadian Prime Minister, in a security Speech, October, 2004.
“[Islamic] leaders have always thought globally, viewing their struggles as part of a broader War against the West.”
~ Clifford May, President, Foundation for Defense of Democracies, and former New York Times foreign Correspondent (October 31, 2009).
“We have to establish Islam in Canada. I wanna see Islam in every single corner of the city; I would like to see niqabis and hijabis [women wearing face masks and head coverings] everywhere in the city. I want to see “brothers” [Muslim men] in beards everywhere in the city. Because when they see more of us, they will have more respect for us. They will say, ‘Look, they are everywhere … we cannot go against them.’”
~ Said Rageah, Muslim Cleric, Toronto, 2009
Picture a map with two colours, red for Islam, blue for Christendom. If we ran maps of the past 1,400 years at high speed, we would see these two colours advancing and retreating across the entire Mediterranean basin, parts of middle Europe as far north as Vienna, all of North Africa, the Middle East – not to mention the vast regions north of, and including chunks of India, and to the Far East, south to Indonesia. We would notice immediately that there is never any white space between the two colours. To freeze this map at any point in history since the sixth century would show the labile boundaries between these two theological kingdoms. Anyone visiting the beautiful Alhambra in Grenada, that stunning aesthetic and horticultural tribute to Islamic culture and thought will sense the beauty and confidence that once was there. In such places – throughout Spain and in other Southern European countries – we find plentiful physical evidence of the map: mosques built over churches; then churches built over mosques, or inversely; a veritable warfare of art and theology, ideas and stones. I will come back to this war momentarily. But first, let’s look at the slow transformation of the West’s own spiritual and ideological foundations that began during the sixteenth century Protestant Reformation, and that has made us vulnerable to attack from within and without.
We Began by Attacking Our Own Foundations
As mentioned above, the modern democratic spirit that mutated into radical individualism was born a child of the Reformation. It did not take long, however, due to the influence of materialistic science and the dreadful experience of two world wars to abandon this spiritual origin altogether, turning in the end against all public belief in spiritual transcendence (the idea that there might be is a spiritual reality that transcends the physical world). This was a fateful turning, as we shall see shortly, that has weakened us considerably, simply because when a materialistic people for whom the universe has lost all higher meaning is faced with a people infused with such spiritual confidence they will blow themselves up as martyrs for God, they stand a good chance of losing.
At any rate, under our new secular paradigm, the communal concept of democracy that began in the faith communities of the West as Vox Populi, Vox Dei (“the voice of the people is the voice of God”), also began mutating. From the idea that majorities with a common belief system could – and would – arrive at a common truth by voting, we mutated to a people who believe that democratic rights are most properly expressed by individuals, often as “democratic rights” asserted (via courts) against the larger community itself. Secular scientists were breaking down the physical world into constituent parts in a hunt for the ultimate material truth of the universe; secular philosophers were promoting radical – and very relative – moral individualism. Quantum particles; moral particles. One man, one vote. Atomistic Man. Soon, morality too, would be considered a matter of pure individual truth, rather than a truth held in common. These two forms of individuation, one physical, the other political and moral have produced the disunited, atomized, secular and materialistic regimes of the West, wherein even the suggestion that morality is a public good to be held in common is now considered offensive.
Raw materialism, however, has always been empty with respect to the ultimate questions. It tells us a great deal about the What, but nothing about the Why of existence. Moral relativism is an advance-surrender of any possibility of locating a single Why. However, all humans seem to have a spiritual hunger, so the quest for the Why doesn’t go away. In the West, even as we mistook the What for the Why and summarily dropped God from the entire question, the hard-wiring of the quest remained. By then the unspoken logic was: If there really is no spiritual Kingdom of Heaven, well, then let’s damn well create a secular one. So in the twentieth century the Western world went to war against itself, twice. The aging, spiritually-weakened liberal democracies, living off the rapidly-depleting moral surplus of the Judeo-Christian belief system, found themselves waging war against secular totalitarian systems that had become, of all things … political religions! They were attempting to engineer never-before-seen societies of human perfection on earth, in the name of … Man. Across the blasted face of Europe, in a truly fateful historical apocalypse, the old spiritual armies, fighting to defend and preserve the residue of their worn-out religious tradition – individual rights, the sacredness of human life, equality, rule of law, and so on – managed to win once again for what may have been the last time. After the atomic bomb, the young found it hard to believe there was much worth fighting for.
What was left? Only demands for equality, moral relativism, and its necessary corollary – a mindless “tolerance” of all individual truths. This is now the reductive and unshakeable foundation of the Western political and secular orthodoxy. In its name the Western world embarked on vast and self-contradictory egalitarian program of legal discrimination demanding wall-to-wall equality in social and economic outcomes. All would be good if all were made good by law. At last, we would have our Earthly Kingdom. To achieve this all traditional forms of life rooted in spiritual belief in a fixed natural moral law and in the realities of natural human biology were deemed exclusionist and discriminatory. The new orthodoxy teaches that religions discriminate (against all secular norms); that the heterosexual (or “heteronormative”) family discriminates against individuals due to its economic, tax, and legal privileges; that traditional sexual morality is oppressive; and so on. It soon became apparent that once aimed at society in this way, democratic equality had become a universal solvent because the practical result for all post-Christian regimes has been ever-more aggressive attacks on all social, sexual, and economic privileges and laws intended precisely to protect and ensure the success of our traditional regimes. So wherever enforced, equality rights have produced the atomization and decay of traditional forms of life and morality, and of the common life once based upon them.
This process has produced bizarre ideological consequences – or clashes – within all Western societies, to the extent that all those still attempting to live according to our once-spiritual norms (or the moral surplus of them), principles that were the foundation of the Western world for millennia, began to realize they were being drawn in to a radical “civil war of values” within their own countries. Samuel Huntington’s insightful study The Clash of Civilizations told only half the story. He argued persuasively that many civilizations of the world – such as Islam and Christianity – rest on clashing ideologies that will not, and cannot be melded.
But the deeper story of the Western democracies is that there is a more serious clash within each of them. For once having repudiated natural law and human nature, and replaced these foundational premises with a simplistic egalitarian dictate, they proceeded to eviscerate marriage with laws granting individuals unilateral no-fault divorce rights (to hell with the contractual rights of the observant spouse); laws granting individual women abortion rights (to hell with the rights of the fathers, and of the unborn children); laws granting individuals gay-marriage rights and benefits (to hell with civilization’s procreative objective); and then … they begin fining and jailing citizens for resisting this regime-change (to hell with free speech and open debate). This new orthodoxy was to bring about our utopia.