Tuesday, July 18, 2017

The Charter of the Protofascist "Regency of Carnaro" of Gabriele D'Annunzio in the Seized City of Fiume

Gabriele D'Annunzio and other Italian nationalists were enraged at the treatment of Italy after the Great War. The Versailles Treaty compounded their humiliation. Fiume, which is today a city in Croatia, was at the time a city peopled with Italians clamoring to return to Italy. In defiance of Britain, France, and America, D'Annunzio, a poet, gathered an army, invaded Fiume, declared himself "Duce," and imposed a protofascist state. The Regency of Carnaro would endure only for a short time, but its brief life would resonate throughout the interwar years and beyond, the first state of its sort to erupt onto the world.

"Who can be against us?"

Outline of a New Constitution for the Free State of Fiume
Quis Contra Nos?
STATUTUM ET ORDINA TUM EST JURO EGO SI SPIRITUS PRO NOBIS QUIS CONTRA NOS? 
FlUME OF ITALY 27 August, 1920 
The Enduring Will of the People 
Fiume, for centuries a free Commune of ancient Italy, declared her full and complete surrender to the mother-country on October I0, 1918. Her claim is threefold, like the impenetrable armour of Roman legend. 
Fiume is warden of the Italian marches, the furthest stronghold of Italian culture, the most distant land that bears the imprint of Dante. From century to century through all vicissitudes, through strife and anguish, Dante’s Carnaro has done faithful service to Italy. From her as from a centre the spiritual life of Italy has shone forth and still shines forth over shores and islands, from Volosca to Laurana, from Moschiena to Albona, from Veglio to Lussino, from Cherso to Arbe. This is her claim from history.
Fiume, as of old Tarsatica, placed at the southern end of the Liburnian rampart stretches thence along the Julian Alps and is contained entirely within that boundary which science, tradition and history alike confirm as the sacred confines of Italy. This is her claim from position. 
Fiume, with will unwavering and heroic courage, overcoming every attack whether of force or fraud, vindicated her right, two years ago, to choose her own destiny, her own allegiance on the strength of that just principle declared to the world by some of her unjust adversaries themselves. This is her claim founded on Roman right. 

In contrast to this threefold claim stands the threefold wrong, iniquity, cupidity, and force to which Italy submits in sorrow, leaving unrecognized and unclaimed the victory that she, herself, has won. Thus it comes to pass that the inhabitants of the free city of Fiume, faithful to their Latin origin and determined to carry out their lawful decision are framing a new model for their constitution to suit the spirit of their new life not intending to limit that constitution to the territory which, under the title ‘corpus separatum’ —was assigned to the crown of Hungary, but offering it as a free alternative to any of those communities of the Adriatic which desire to break through all hindrances and rise to freedom in the name of a new Italy. Thus, in the name of a new Italy, the people of Fiume, taking their stand on justice and on Iiberty, swear that they will fight to the utmost with their whole strength against any attempt to separate their land from the mother-country and that they will defend for ever the mountain boundary of their country assigned to it by God and by Rome. 

The Basis 1. The sovereign people of Fiume, in the strength of their unassailable sovereignty, take as the centre of their free State the “corpus separatum”, with all its railways and its harbour. But, as on the west they are determined to maintain contact with the mother-country, so, on the east, they are not prepared to renounce their claim to a frontier more just and more secure than might be assigned to them by the next happening in the give-and-take of politics or by any future treaties which they might be able to conclude with the rural and maritime communes after the proclamation of an open port and of generous statutes. 
2. The Italian province of Carnaro is made up of the district of Fiume, of the islands, traditionally Venetian, which have declared by vote that they will share her fortunes; and of any neighbouring communities, which, after making a genuine application for admission, have becn welcomed fraternally and in due legal form. 
3, The Italian province of Carnaro is a State chosen by the people which has for basis the power of productive labour and for constitution the widest and most varied forms of autonomy such as were in use during the four centuries of our glorious communal period. 
4. The province recognizes and confirms the sovereignty of all citizens without distinction of sex, race, language, class, or religion. But above and beyond every other right she maintains the right of the producer; abolishes or reduces excessive centralization and coinstitutional powers, and subdivides offices and powers: so that by their harmonic, interplay communal life may grow more vigorous and abundant. 
5. The province protects, defends, preserves, all popular rights and liberties; insuring international order by justice and discipline, seeks to bring back a time of well—ordered happiness which should bring new life to a people delivered at last from Government of lies and oppression; her constant aim is to raise the status of her citizens and to increase their prosperity; so that the citizenship shall be recognized by foreigners as a title of high honour as as it was in former days under the law of Rome. 
6. All citizens of the State, of both sexes are equal, and feel themselves equal in the eve of the law. The exercise of their constitutional rights can be neither diminished nor suppressed except by public trial and solemn condemnation. 
7. Fundamental liberties, freedom of thought and of the Press, the right to hold meetings and to form associations are guaranteed to all citizens by the Constitution. Every form of religion is permitted and respected, and allowed to erect its own places of worship; but no citizen may allege his creed or the rites of his religion as a reason for withdrawing from the fulfilment of duties prescribed by the law. Misuse of statutory liberty, when its purpose is illegal and when it disturbs the public peace may be punished, as provided by the law; but the law must in no way transgress the principle of liberty. 
8. The Constitution guarantees to all citizens of both sexes: primary instruction in well-lighted and healthy schools; physical training in open-air gymnasiums, well-equipped; paid work with a fair minimum living wage; assistance in sickness, infirmity, and involuntary unemployment; old age pensions; the enjoyment of property legitimately obtained; inviolability of the home; ‘habeas corpus’; compensation for injuries in case of judicial errors or abuse of power. 
9. The State does not recognize the ownership of property as an absolute and personal right, but regards it as one of the most useful and responsible of social functions. No property can be reserved to anyone in unrestricted ownership; nor can it be permitted that an indolent owner should leave his property unused or should dispose of it badly, to the exclusion of anyone else. The only legitimate title to the possession of the means of production and exchange is labour. Labour alone is the custodian of that which is by far the most fruitful and profitable to the general well-being. 
10. The harbour, station, railway lines comprised in the territory of Fiume are the inalienable and incontestable property of the State in perpetuity. By a statute of the Free Port, the full and free use of the harbour for commerce, industry, and navigation is guaranteed to foreigners as to natives, in perfect equality of good treatment and immunity from exorbitant harbour dues and from any injury to person or goods. 
11. A National Bank of Carnaro under State supervision, is entrusted with the issue of paper money and with all operations concerning credit. A law for this purpose will decide methods and regulations to be followed and will point out the rights, functions, and responsibilities of the banks already in operation in the territory and of those that may be hereafter founded there. 
12. All the citizens of both sexes have the full right to choose and carry on any industry, profession, art, or craft. Industries started or supported by foreign capital and all concessions to foreigners will be regulated by liberal legislation. 
13. Three elements unite to inspire and control the regulation, progress, and growth of the Community: the Citizens; the Corporations; the Communes. 
14. There are three articles of belief which take precedence of all others in the Province and the federated communes: Life is a good thing, it is fit and right that man, reborn to freedom, should lead a life that is noble and serious; a true man is he who, day by day, renews the dedication of his manhood to his fellowmen; labour, however humble and obscure, if well done adds to the beauty of the world. 
The Citizens 15. The following persons have the rank of citizens of Carnaro: all citizens now on the register of the free city of Fiume; all citizens of the federated communes; all persons who have made application for citizenship and who have obtained it by legal decree. 
16. Citizens are invested with all civil and political rights as soon as they reach the age of twenty. Without distinction of sex they become electors and eligible for all careers. 
17. Those citizens shall he deprived of political rights by formal sentence, who are: condemned by the law; defaulters with regard to military service for the defence of the territory; defaulters in the payment of taxes; incorrigible parasites on the community if they are not incapacitated from labour by age or sickness. 
The Corporations 18. The State represents the aspiration and effort of the people, as a community, towards material and spiritual advancement. Those only are full citizens who give their best endeavour to add to the wealth and strength of the State; these truly are one with her in her growth and development. Whatever be the kind of work a man does, whether of hand or brain, art or industry, design or execution, he must he a member of one of the ten Corporations who receive from the commune a general direction as to the scope of their activities, hut are free to develop them in their own way and to decide among themselves as to their mutual duties and responsibilities. 
9. The first Corporation comprises the wage-earners of industry, agriculture and commerce, small artisans, and small landholders who work their own farms, employing little other labour and that only occasionally. The second Corporation includes all members of the technical or managerial staff in any private business, industrial or rural, with the exception of the proprietors or partners in the business. In the third, are united all persons employed in commercial undertakings who are not actually operatives. Here again proprietors are excluded. In the fourth, are associated together all employers engaged in industrial, agricultural, or commercial undertakings, so long as they are not merely owners of the business but — according to the spirit of the new constitution —prudent and sagacious masters of industry. The fifth comprises all public servants, State and Communal employees of every rank. In the sixth are to be found the intellectual section of the people; studious youth and its leaders; teachers in the public schools and students in colleges and polytechnics; sculptors, painters, decorators, architects, musicians, all those who practise the Arts, scenic or ornamental. The seventh includes all persons belonging to the liberal professions who are not included in the former categories. The eighth is made up of the Co-operative Societies of production and consumption, industrial and agricultural, and can only he represented by the self-chosen administrators of the Societies. The ninth comprises all workers on the sea. The tenth has no special trade or register or title. It is reserved for the mysterious forces of progress and adventure. It is a sort of votive offering to the genius of the unknown, to the man of the future, to the hoped-for idealization of daily work, to the liberation of the spirit of man beyond the panting effort and bloody sweat of to-day. It is represented in the civic sanctuary by a kindled lamp bearing an ancient Tuscan inscription of the epoch of the communes, that calls up an ideal vision of human labour: 'Fatica senza fatica.' 
20. Each Corporation is a legal entity and is so recognized by the State. Chooses its own consuls; makes known its decisions in an assembly of its own; dictates its own terms, its own decrees and rules; exercises autonomy under the guidance of its own wisdom and experience; provides for its own needs and for the management of its own funds, collecting from its members a contribution in proportion o their wages, salary business profits, or professional income; defends in every way its own special interest and strives to improve its status; aims at bringing to perfection the technique of its own art or calling; seeks to improve the quality of the work carried out and to raise the standard of excellence and beauty; enrols the humblest workers, endeavoring to encourage them to do the best work; recognizes the duty of mutual help; decides as to pensions for sick and infirm members; chooses for itself symbols, emblems music, songs, and prayers; founds its own rules and ceremonies; assists, as handsomely as it can, in providing enjoyment for the commune for us anniversary fetes, and sports by land and sea; venerates its dead, honours its elders, and celebrates its heroes. 
21. The relations between the Government of the province and the corporations and between the different Corporations are regulated by the methods defined in the statutes which regulate the relations between the central province and the affiliated communes and between the several communes. The members of each Corporation form a free electoral body for choosing representatives on the Council of Governors (Provvisori). The first place in public ceremonies is assigned to the consuls of the Corporations and their banners. 
The Communes 22. The ancient ‘potere normativo’ will be re-established for all communes —the right of making laws subject to the Common Law. They exercise all powers not specially assigned by the Constitution to the judicial, legislative and executive departments of the province. 
23. Each commune has full sanction to draw up its own code of municipal laws, derived from its own special customs, character, and inherited energy and from its new national life. But each commune must apply to the province for ratification of its statutes which the commune will give. When these statutes have been approved, accepted, and voted on by the people they can be amended only by the will of a real majority of the citizens. 
24. The communes have the acknowledged right to make settlements, agreements, and treaties between themselves, administrative and legislative. But they are required to submit them to be examined by the Central Executive Power. If the Central Power considers that such settlements, agreements, or treaties controvert the spirit of the Constitution, it sends them up for final decision to the Court of Administration. If the Court declares them to be illegal and invalid, the Central Executive of the province makes provision for their cancellation. 
25. If order, within a commune, should be disturbed by faction, rebellion, or plot, or by any other form of craft or violence, if the dignity or integrity of a commune should be injured or menaced by the transgression of another, the Executive of the province would intervene as mediator or peace maker, if the communal authorities agreed in requesting it to do so, if a third of the citizens exercising political rights in the commune itself should make the request. 
26. The following functions belong especially to the communes: to provide for primary instruction, according to the regulations laid down by the Central Education Authority; to nominate the communal judges; to appoint and maintain the communal police; to levy taxes; to contract loans within the territory of the province, or even outside it, provided that the sanction of the Central Government shall have been obtained, but this will not be granted except in case of absolute necessity. 
Legislation 27. Two elected bodies will exercise legislative power: the Council of Senators; the Council of 'Provvisori'. 
28. The Senate is elected by means of direct and secret universal suffrage, by all citizens throughout the province, who have attained the age of twenty-one years and have been invested with political rights. Any citizen who has a vote is eligible as a member of the Senate. 
29. Senators remain in office ten years. They are elected in the proportion of one to every thousand electors, but in no case can their number be under thirty. All electors form a single constituency. The election is to be by universal suffrage and proportional representation, 
30. The Senate has authority to make ordinances and laws with reference to the penal and civil code the police, national defence, public secondary instruction, art, relations between the communes and the State. The Senate meets, as a rule, only once a year, in the month of October, for a short definite sitting. 
31 The Council of the Provvisori is composed of sixty delegates, elected by universal secret suffrage and proportional representation. Ten provvisori are elected by industrial workers and agricultural labourers; ten by seamen of all kinds; ten by employers; five by rural and industrial technicians; five by the managerial staffs in private firms; five by the teachers in the public schools, by the students in the higher schools, and by other members of the sixth Corporation; five by the liberal professions; five by public servants; five by Co-operative Societies of production, of labor and of consumption. 
32. The provvisori remain in office two years. They are not eligible unless they belong to the Corporation represented. 
33. The Council of the Provvisori meets usually twice in the year, in the months of May and November, and uses the laconic method of debate. It has authority to make ordinances and laws with reference to the commercial and Maritime code; to the control of labour; to transport; to public works; to treaties of commerce, customs, tariffs, and similar matters; to technical and professional instruction; to industry and banking; to arts and crafts. 
34. The Senate and the Council of Provvisori unite together once a year as a single body on the first of December, as a Grand National Council under the title of Arengo del Carnaro. The Arengo discusses and deliberates on relations with other States; on finance and the Treasury; on the higher studies; on reforms of the constitution; on extensions of liberty. 
The Executive 35, Executive power in the province is exercised by seven ministers elected jointly by the National Assembly, the Senate, and the Council of Provvisori, The Minister for Foreign Affairs, the Minister for Finance and the Treasury, and the Minister of Public Instruction are elected by the National Assembly. The Minister of the Interior and of Justice, the Minister of National Defence are elected by the Senate. The Council of Provvisori elects the Minister of Public Economy and the Minister of Labour. The Minister for Foreign Affairs takes the title Prime Minister and represents the Province in intercourse with other States ‘primus inter pares’. 
36. The seven ministers, once elected, remain in office for their allotted time. They decide everything that does not interfere with current administration. The Prime Minister presides over the discussions and has the deciding vote when the votes are equally balanced. The ministers are elected for a year, and are not re-eligible except once. But, after the interval of one year, they may be nominated again. 
Judiciary Power The Judiciary Power will be held by magistrates. Labour judges, judges of the High Court, judges of the Criminal Court, the Court of Administration. 
38. The magistrates, elected to inspire public confidence, by all the electors of the various communes in proportion to their number, decide all civil and commercial casts under the value of five thousand lire and questions of crime where the penalty of imprisonment does not last more than one year. 
39. The Labour judges decide eases of controversy between employers and workers, whether wage-earners or salaried staff. The Labour judges are grouped in ‘colleges’, the members of each ‘college’ being nominated by one of those Corporations’ which elect the Council of the Provvisori. According to the following scale: two by industrial workers and agricultural labourers; two by all workers connected with the sea; two by employers; one by technical workers, industrial or agricultural; one by the liberal professions; one by members of the administrative staff in private firms; one by public employees; one by teachers, by students of the higher institutes, and by other members of the sixth Corporation; one by the Co-operative Societies of production, of labour and of consumption. The Labour judges have power to divide their colleges into branches in order to render their proceedings more rapid, they are to dispense justice with promptitude, clearness, and expedition. A joint assembly of the branches constitutes a Court of Appeal. 
40. The judges of the High Court adjudicate on all questions civil, commercial, and penal which are not dealt with by the magistrates and the Labour judges except those which are dealt with by the judges of the Criminal Court. The judges of the High Court constitute the Court of Appeal for sentences of magistrates. The judges of the High Court are chosen by the Court of Administration from citizens holding the title of Doctor of Law (LL. D.). 
41. Seven sworn citizens, assisted by two deputies and presided over by a judge of the High Court compose the Criminal Court which tries all crimes of a political nature and all those misdemeanours which would he punished by imprisonment for more than three years. 
42. Elected by the National Council, the Court of Administration is composed of five acting members and two supplementary. Of the acting members, at least three, and of the supplementary members, at least one shall be chosen from Doctors of Law. The Court of Administration deals with: acts and decrees issued by the legislative and executive authorities to ascertain that they are in conformity with the Constitution; any statutory conflict between the legislative and executive authorities, between the province and the communes, between one commune and another, between the province and the Corporations, between the province and private persons, between the communes and the Corporations, between the communes and private individuals; cases of high treason against the province on the part of citizens who hold legislative or executive power; attacks on the rights of the people; civil contests between the province and the communes or between commune and commune; questions regarding the rights of citizenship and naturalization; questions referring to the competence (function) of the various magistrates and judges. The Court of Administration has the ultimate revision of sentences and nominates by vote the judges of the High Court. Citizens who are members of the Court of Administration are forbidden to hold any other office either in that commune or any other. Nor may they carry on any trade or profession during the whole period that they are in office. 
The Commandant 43. When the province is in extreme peril and sees that her safety depends on the will and devotion of one man who is capable of rousing and of leading all the forces of the people in a united and victorious effort, the National Council in solemn conclave in the Arengo may, voting by word of mouth, nominate a Commandant and transmit to him supreme authority without appeal. The Council decides the period, long or short, during which he is to rule not forgetting that in the Roman Republic the dictatorship lasted six months. 
44, During the period of his rule, the Commandant holds all powers —political and military, legislative and executive. The holders of executive power assume the office of commissaries and secretaries under him. 
45. On the expiration of the period of rule, the National Council again assembles and decides: to confirm the Commandant in his office, or else to substitute another citizen in his place, or else to depose him, or even to banish him. 
46. Any citizen holding political rights, whether he have any office in the province or not, may be elected to the supreme office. 
National Defence 47. In the province of Carnaro, all the citizens of both sexes, from seventeen to fifty-five years of age, are liable for military service for the defence of the country. After selection has been made, men in sound health will serve in the forces of land and sea, men who are not so strong and women will serve in ambulances, hospitals, in administration, in ammunition factories, and in any other auxiliary work according to the capacity and skill of each. 
48. State assistance on an ample scale is granted to all citizens who, during military service, have contracted any incurable infirmity, and to their families, if in need. The State adopts the children of all citizens who are killed in defence of their country, assists their families in distress, and commends to the memory of future generations the names of the fallen. 
49. In time of peace and security, the State will not maintain a standing army; but all the nation will remain armed, as prescribed by law, and its forces by land and sea well and duly trained. Strict military service is confined to the period of instruction or to periods when war is either actually being waged or when there is immediate danger of war. During periods of instruction or of war, the citizen will lose none of his civil and political rights; and will be able to exercise them whenever the necessities of active service permit. 
Public Instruction 50. For any race of noble origin, culture is the best of all weapons. For the Adriatic race, harassed for centuries by a ceaseless struggle with an unlettered usurper, culture is more than a weapon; like faith and justice, it is an unconquerable force. For the people of Fiume at the moment of her rebirth to liberty, it becomes the instrument more helpful than any other against the insidious plots that have encircled her for centuries. Culture is the preservative against corruption; the buttress against ruin. In Dante’s Carnaro the culture of the language of Dante is the custodian of that which has ever been reckoned as the most precious treasure of the people, the highest testimony to the nobility of their origin, the chief sign of their moral right of rule. That moral right is what the new State must fight for. On its will to victory is founded the exaltation of the human ideal. The new State, with unity completed, liberty achieved, justice enthroned, must make it her first duty to defend, preserve, and fight for unity, liberty, justice in the spirit of man. The culture of Rome must be here in our midst and the culture of Italy. For this cause the Italian province of Carnaro makes education — the culture of her people — the crown and summit of her Constitution, esteems the treasure of Latin culture as the foundation of her welfare. 
51. The city of Fiume will have a free University, housed in a spacious building, capable of accommodating a great number of students and ruled by its own special ordinances. There will be in the city of Fiume, a School of Painting, a School of Decorative Art, a School of Music free from any legal interference, conducted in a candid and open spirit under the guidance of a judgment acute enough to get rid of the incumbrance of the inefficient, to choose the best students from among the good and to assist the best in the discovery of new possibilities in the rendering of human sentiment. 
52. The secondary schools will be under the supervision of the Senate; the technical and professional schools under that of the Council of the Provvisori; higher education, under that of the National Council. In every school and in every commune the Italian language will have the first place. In secondary schools the teaching of the various dialects spoken in the Italian province of Carnaro will be obligatory. Primary instruction will be given in the language spoken by the majority of the inhabitants of each commune and also in parallel classes in that spoken by the minority. If any commune tries to evade the obligation of providing those double courses of instruction the Central Government of the province reserves its right to provide them at the cost of the commune. 
53. An Educational Council decides upon the nature and method of primary instruction which is compulsory in the schools of all communes. The teaching of choral singing based on the genuine poetry of the people (folk songs) and the teaching of decorative art based on examples of indigenous popular art will hold a first place. The Council will consist of: a representative of each commune two representatives of secondary schools; two, of technical and professional schools; two, of institutions of higher education (to he elected by professors and students); two, by the Schools of Music two, by the School of Decorative Art. 
54. Schools, well lighted and ventilated, must not have on their walls any emblems of religion or of political parties. The public schools welcome the followers of every religious profession, the believers in every creed and those, too, who are able to live without an altar and without a God. Liberty of conscience receives entire respect. Each one may offer up his silent prayers. But there will be inscribed on the walls inspiring words that, like an heroic symphony, will never lose their power to raise and animate the soul. And there will be representations of those masterpieces of the painter’s art which interpret most nobly the endless longings and aspirations of mankind. 
Reforms of the Constitutions 55. Every seven years the Great National Council will meet in a special conference to consider constitutional reforms. But the Constitution can be altered at anytime, when a third of the citizens electors make a request for the alteration. The following bodies have the right to propose amendments of the Constitution: the members of the National Council; the representatives of the communes; the Court of Administration; the Corporations. 
The Right of Initiative 56. All citizens belonging to electoral bodies have the right of initiating legislative proposals with regard to questions which fall within the sphere of action of one or other Council; but the initiative will not take effect unless at least one-fourth of the electors of the Council in question are unanimous moving and supporting it. 
'The Power of Appeal 57. All laws that have received the sanction of the two legislative bodies may be subjected to public reconsideration with the possibility of repeal provided that such reconsideration be asked for by a number of electors equal to at least a fourth of the enfranchised citizens, 
The Right of Petition 58. All citizens have the right of petition towards those bodies which they have helped to elect. 
Reduplication of Offices 59. No citizen may fill more than one official post nor take part in two legislative bodies at the same time. 
Recall 60. Any official appointment may be revoked: when the official in question loses his political rights through a sentence confirmed by the Court of Law; when the decree of revocation is voted for by more than half of the members of the electoral body. 
Responsibility 61. All holders of power and all public officials of the province are legally responsible for any injury caused to State, commune, Corporation, or single citizen by any transgression of theirs, whether through misdoing, carelessness, cowardice, or inaccuracy. 
Remuneration 62. All public officials, enumerated in the Statutes and appointed in the new Constitution, will receive suitable remuneration, in accordance with the decision of the National Council annually revised. 
The Aediles 63. There will be in the province a College of Aediles, wisely selected from men of taste, skill, and a liberal education. This ‘College’ will be a revival not so much of the Roman Aediles, as of the Office for the adornment of the City’ which, in our fourteenth century, arranged a new road or a new piazza with the same sense of rhythm and proportion which guided them in the conduct of a Republican triumph or a carnival display. It will provide for the decorum of life; secure the safety, decency, sanitation of public edifices, and private dwellings; prevent the disfigurement of roads by awkward or ill-placed buildings; enliven civic festivals by sea and land with graceful ornament, recalling our forefathers for whom the glory of the sunshine and a few fair garlands of flowers with human beauty of pageant and motion sufficed to frame a miracle of joy; convince the workers that to add beauty, some sign of joy in the building, to the humblest habitation is an act of piety, that a sense of religion, of human mystery, of the profundity of Nature may be passed on from generation to generation in the simplest symbol carved or painted on the kneading trough or the cradle, on the loom or the distaff, on the linen chest or the cottage beam; it will try to reawaken in our people the love of beautiful line and colour in the things that are used in their daily life, showing them how much, in the old days, could be achieved be achieved by a slight geometrical design, by a star, a flower, a heart, a serpent or a dove on a pitcher or oil jar or jug, on a bench or chest or platter; it will serve to show our people how the ancient spirit of communal liberty manifested itself even in the utensils that received the imprint of man’s life; finally, convinced that a people cannot attain to strength and nobility without noble architecture it will endeavour to make modern architects realize that the new materials — iron and glass and concrete — must be raised to the level of harmonious life by the invention of a new architecture. 
Music 64. In the Italian province of Carnaro, music is a social and religious institution. Once in a thousand or two thousand years music springs from the soul of a people and flows on for ever. A noble race is not one that creates a God in its own image but one that creates also the song wherewith to do Him homage. Every rebirth of a noble race is a lyric force, every sentiment that is common to the whole race, a potential lyric; music, the language of ritual, has power, above all else, to exalt the achievement and the life of man. Does it not seem that great music has power to bring spiritual peace to the strained and anxious multitude? The reign of the human spirit is not yet. ‘When matter acting on matter shall be able to replace man’s physical strength, then will the spirit of man begin to see the dawn of libertv’: so said a man of Dalmatia of our own Adriatic, the blind seer of Sebenico. As cock-crow heralds the dawn, so music is the herald of the soul’s awakening. Meanwhile, in the instruments of labour, of profit, and of sport, in the noisy machines which, even they, fall into a poetical rhythm, music can find her motives and her harmonies. In the pauses of music is heard the silence of the tenth corporation. 
65. In every commune of the province there will be a choral society and an orchestra subsidized by the State. In the city of Fiume, the College of Aediles will be commissioned to erect a great concert hall, accommodating an audience of at least ten thousand with tiers of seats and ample space for choir and orchestra. The great orchestral and choral~ celebrations will be entirely free — in the language of the Church — a gift of God. 
SATUTUM ET ORDINATUM EST. JURO EGO.

Friday, July 14, 2017

Codreanu on the Virtue of Silence and the Oratory of Deeds

"The law of silence: Speak little. Say only what you must. Speak only when necessary. Your oratory should be deeds, not words. You accomplish: let others talk." 
- Corneliu Codreanu, 'The Nest Leader's Manual'

Thursday, July 13, 2017

A Quote of Sir Mosley on Fascist Resistance to Communism

"Governments and Parties which have relied on the normal instruments of government... have fallen easy and ignoble victims to the forces of anarchy. If, therefore, such a situation arises in Britain, we shall prepare to meet the anarchy of Communism with the organised force of Fascism."  
- Sir Oswald Mosley, 'The Greater Britain'  
Image: Blackshirts at their Chelsea headquarters

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

A Quote of Sir Mosley on Lost Prospects for Fascist Unity

"We were sometimes suspected of being organised in a fascist International. On the contrary, we were much too national; the view of history may well be that we were not nearly international enough. There were sporadic meetings between leaders, and occasional holiday parties touring each other's countries, but no form of systematical organisation... More, not less, should in my view have been done to surmount these differences for the purpose of preserving peace." 
- Oswald Mosley, 'My Life' 
Image: A symbol of past efforts toward fascist unity; Unity Mitford, wearing her Blackshirt uniform, meeting Fritz Stadelmann, a Hitler adjutant.

Monday, July 10, 2017

A Quote from Céline on Experience

"Experience is a dim lamp, which only lights the one who bears it." 
- Louis-Ferdinand Céline, from a 1960 interview

Sunday, June 18, 2017

A Quote from Mussolini on Time and Blood

"Blood alone moves the wheels of history." 
- Benito Mussolini, speech at Parma, in 1914

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

"The Empire of the Shopkeepers," by Julius Evola: Remarks on it and a Defense of the British Empire's Native Origins

Evola's piece is reprinted beneath my remarks; I disagree with him that the British Empire was a creature of Jewish influence and manipulation. Like the US, which was European in its origins, the British Empire succumbed to Jewish influence and was transformed.

Julius Evola (1898-1974), traditionalist visionary.

Before providing Evola's piece, I want to offer my own perspective on the British Empire. It is an historical viewpoint that distinguishes me as much from some of my political fellows as it does from Evola. In 1066, William the Conquerer brought with him the first Jewish settlers to the British Isles. For two centuries, the inevitable tensions that result from Jewish insertion of self into a host accumulated, resulting in King Edward I issuing his famous edict that Jews were expelled from Britain in 1290. In 1657, almost four hundred years on, Oliver Cromwell allowed the Jews to return. Two historical contingencies were decisive for Britain.

Evola argues that the decision to permit the Jews to return to Britain led to the creation of an Empire that was a "travesty and a contradiction of a real Empire." In Evola's view, an Empire is built on "heroic, aristocratic and spiritual values." British martial and other qualities, Evola claims, were corrupted by Jewish elements that had been permitted to return. He observes that Jews had been expelled in 1290 and were allowed to return in 1649, and that after they returned, they began to undermine traditional life. He argues that this led to the primacy of commercial interests as the British Empire expanded and as it grew economically.[1]

Evola's belief that the British Empire became an instrument of Jewish interests is accurate, but his claim that the British Empire as a whole was a Jewish construct is not. It was in the period of the late 15th and early 16th centuries that the British Empire had its origins. From this period of exploration and expansion through 1657, when Cromwell permitted the Jews to return, there was no direct Jewish influence on the early growth of the British Empire. By the time Jews were again a force in British politics, an Empire was forged through the effort and struggle of native Britons. Native Britons, not Jews, founded the British Empire.

Evola is correct in claiming that Benjamin Disraeli, a Jewish Prime Minister, had solidified the Jewification of the British Empire. But by the early twentieth century, it was the process of Jewification that had made possible Disraeli's tenure. Native British nationalists, such as Sir Oswald Mosley, understood that the British Empire was primordially ethnic British in its origins. The British Union of Fascists aimed, among other things, at returning the Empire to its role as the handiwork of native Britons. Sir Mosley's movement aspired to use the Empire to enrich the native peoples of Britain, and end it as an instrument of Jewish policy.[2]

Disraeli the Jew and the Empire of the Shopkeepers
Julius Evola [3]

In a short article published in this journal during the period of the sanctions (November 1935), we tried to explain the nature of the ‘British Empire’ from the point of view of the typology of forms of civilisation.

On that occasion, we showed that it is nothing but a travesty and a contradiction of a real Empire. An Empire worthy of the name is a supra-national organisation based upon heroic, aristocratic, and spiritual values. There is nothing of this sort in the ‘British Empire’. All normal hierarchical relations are on the contrary subjected to a veritable inversion. England possesses a monarchy, an almost feudal nobility, and a military caste which, at least up until very recent years, showed remarkable qualities of character and of sang-froid. But all this is mere appearance. The real centre of the ‘Empire’ is elsewhere; it is, if we may put it this way, within the caste of merchants in the most general sense, of which the modern forms are plutocratic oligarchy, finance, and industrial and commercial monopoly. The ‘Shopkeeper’ is the veritable master of Britain; the unscrupulous and cynical spirit of the merchant, his economic interests, his desire to gain possession to the greatest possible extent of all the world’s riches, these are the bases of English ‘Imperial’ politics, and the real driving forces of English life, beneath the monarchical, conservative appearances.

We know that, wherever economic interests predominate, the Jew rapidly rises and accedes to the commanding positions. The penetration of Judaism into England is not a thing of recent days alone. It was the English Revolution and Protestantism which threw open England’s doors. The Jews, who had been expelled by Edward I in 1290, were readmitted to England as a result of a Petition accepted by Cromwell and finally approved by Charles II in 1649. From this time forward, the Jews, and above all the Spanish Jews (the Sephardim) began to immigrate en masse to England, bringing with them the riches which they had acquired by more or less dubious means, and it was these riches, as we have just explained, which allowed them to accede to the centres of command within English life, to the aristocracy and to positions very close to the Crown. Less than a century after their re-admission, the Jews were so sure of themselves that they demanded to be naturalised, that is to say, to be granted British citizenship. This had a very interesting result: the Law, or Bill, naturalising the Jews was approved in 1740. Most of its supporters were members of the upper classes or high dignitaries within the Protestant Church, which shows us the extent to which these elements had already become Judaised or corrupted by Jewish gold. The reaction came not from the English upper classes, but from the people. The Law of 1740 provoked such outrage and disorder among the populace that it was abrogated in 1753.

The Jews now resorted to another tactic: they abandoned their synagogues and converted, nominally, to Christianity. Thus the obstacle was circumvented and their work of penetration proceeded at an accelerated pace. What mattered to the Jews was to keep their positions of command and to eliminate the religious arguments on which the opposition of that period principally rested; everything else was secondary, since the converted Jew remains, in his instincts, his mentality, and his manner of action, entirely Jewish, as is shown by one striking example among many others: the extremely influential Jewish banker Sampson Gideon, despite having converted, continued to support the Jewish community and was buried in a Jewish cemetery. His money bought for his son an enormous property and the title of Baronet.

This was the preferred tactic of the rich Jews of England from the eighteenth century on: they supplanted the English feudal nobility by acquiring their properties and titles, and thus mixing themselves with the aristocracy, by the nature of the British representative system, they came closer and closer to the government, with the natural consequence of a progressive Judaification of the English political mentality.

In addition, from 1745 to 1749, Sampson Gideon financed the British government from capital which he had multiplied in a dubious manner: by speculating on the Seven Years’ War, more or less as Rothschild did when he made a killing on stocks while only he knew from his own agents the outcome of the battle of Waterloo.

At the same time, in order to increase their influence, the Jews systematically allied themselves to the nobility; the fact that in 1772 it was felt to be necessary to prevent the marriage of members of the British royal family to Jews by means of the Royal Marriages Act, should give us some idea of extent of the Jewish penetration.

By these two means there was brought about a convergence of interests which became more and more apparent between British imperialism and British capitalism, which was itself tied by more and more indissoluble and complex knots to Jewish capitalism.



Yet, from the inception of imperialism on the large scale, what was less apparent was that the ‘British Empire’ was a creature of Judaism, which a Jew had given as a present to the British Royal Crown.


This Jew was Benjamin Disraeli, Queen Victoria’s Prime Minister, ennobled under the title Lord Beaconsfield. This development was remarkably interesting. Until that time, it had occurred to no-one to associate with the dignity of Empire an idea of riches like that which attaches to colonial possessions. Even after the Ghibelline Middle Ages, all traditional spirits would have seen this as a real extravagance and a caricature, since the Imperial idea had always had a sacred aura connected to a higher function of domination and civilisation and to a right which was in a certain sense transcendent. Only one Jew could have conceived the idea of ‘reforming’ the conception of Empire and making of it something plutocratic and transforming it into imperialistic materialism. This Jew was Disraeli – ‘Dizzy’ as he was known. It was he who made of Queen Victoria an ‘Empress’, a colonial Empress, the Empress of India. This indefatigable proponent of the English ‘Imperial’ idea modelled his conception upon the Jewish Messianic-imperial idea, the idea of a people whose power consists in the riches of others, over which they take power, and which they cynically exploit and control. Disraeli always attacked very violently those who wished to separate England from her overseas territories, within which, as a Jewish historian has pointed out, Jews were the pioneers. Disraeli knew who it was that sustained this England which in turn was to dominate the riches of the world; it is possible that he was among those initiates who knew that it was more than a simple British-Jewish plutocracy which was pulling the strings. One recalls those often-quoted words of Disraeli: ‘The world is governed by very different personages from what is imagined by those who are not behind the scenes.’

‘What an actor the man is! And yet, the first impression that he gives us is of absolute sincerity. Some think of him as a foreigner. Does England belong to him, or does he belong to England? Is he conservative or liberal? All this doubtless matters not at all to him. The power of Venice, the imperial republic on which the sun never set, this is the vision that fascinates him. England is the Israel of his imagination and if fortune is with him he will be the Prime Minister of the Empire.’

The critic who wrote these words of Disraeli, when he was merely the leader of the Conservative Party, showed himself thereby to have been possessed of a genuine prophetic spirit. His words capture the true spirit of ‘Dizzy’ in action. The reference to Venice, in material terms, derives from the fact that Disraeli’s family, originally from Cento, near Ferrara, had sought its fortunes in Venice before setting off for England; it was also because of his family that Dizzy would have recalled the ‘imperial’ Venetian idea, to the level of which, in strict connection with the Jewish idea, he wished to raise England. There also was found the ‘imperial’ idea of the merchant, of the power of a bourgeois oligarchy built upon gold, commerce, overseas possessions, and trade. All others would serve as means and instruments to this end. But to realise this ‘Venetian’ ideal, given that Venice itself was at least nominally a free republic, it was necessary to rob England of whatever in her organisation had retained the ancient traditional spirit. Here we have another characteristic feature of Disraeli’s activity.

We cannot provide here a profound exposé of the party-political conflicts of England in Disraeli’s time. However, most of our readers will know of the battles between the Tories, the partisans of the monarch, conservative and mostly Catholic, and the Whigs, a Lutheran aristocracy jealous of its independence and favourable to new liberal ideas. Disraeli’s master-stroke was to by-pass to some extent this opposition by becoming the leader of a new party, to be called, in a restricted sense, ‘Conservative’, which would become a powerful enough instrument for the application of his ideas to neutralise whatever was still good in each of these parties by means of the assistance offered by the other. To put this differently, in Disraeli’s ‘Conservative Party’, the true conservatives became liberals and the liberals, conversely, became at least to some extent conservatives, since it was easy to show them by means of the utilitarian ideas which they already possessed that their interests and those of their adversaries coincided. Having thus realised, with his new party, the ‘quid medium’, Disraeli turned England into a simple oligarchical republic. His ‘Conservative Party’ was in reality a sort of clique, held together by common class interests but divided internally, seized with liberalism, and utterly lacking in ideals. Naturally, Jewish and Masonic influences predominated in it.

It seems nevertheless that Disraeli saw even further than this. This becomes apparent from his novel cycle, The New England. Sybil, or The Two Nations reflects exactly the ideological tactic which Freemasonry had already employed to prepare the French Revolution. Disraeli does not conceal his enthusiasm for the lower classes of society, stating that it is they who will create the future when they are guided by their natural leaders, a new enlightened elite which will have surmounted the prejudices of the past. Such ideas enthused the younger generation of the English nobility, which dreamed of playing this leading rôle of new ‘enlightened’ aristocrats, thereby digging their own grave. In the other novel of the same cycle, Coningsby, the central character is a mysterious Jew of Spanish origin, Sidonia – ‘a mixture of Disraeli and Rothschild, or rather, of what Disraeli would have liked to be and what he would have liked Rothschild to be’ (Maurois). This Sidonia transmits to Coningsby, the symbol of the new England, the doctrine of ‘heroic ambition’; here, again, we find the pseudo-conservative ideal of Disraeli. Sidonia’s solution is a government with conservative ideas but liberal practices. In the final analysis, once the English Tory aristocracy had become liberal, and its ideas had become no more than simple ‘principles’ without practical consequences, all that remained was to flatter their ambitions, in order that they should play the rôle of ‘leaders of the people’ – destined, naturally, to be made victims of in the subsequent phase of the subversion, just as had happened to the French aristocrats who had cherished such new ideas. On this subject, in addition to what we find exposed in these books, we should note that it was Disraeli who introduced universal suffrage into Britain, at least in the rudimentary form of the suffrage of all property-owning heads of households, which he skilfully presented as a compromise acceptable to Tories as well as Whigs. But the destructive labours of Disraeli did not confine themselves to politics; they extended also to the domain of religion. It is here that the Jew simply throws away his mask. It was necessary for him to undermine the elements of English society in their most interior foundation, which was the Christian religion, and, above all, the Catholic religion. To this end, Disraeli propounded his famous theory of the convergence and reciprocal integration of Judaism and Catholicism. Here is what he wrote in Sybil: ‘Christianity without Judaism is incomprehensible, in the same way that Judaism without Catholicism is incomplete.’ In Tancred he adds to this, claiming that the task of the Church is to defend, in a materialistic society, the fundamental principles, of Jewish origin, which are found in the two Testaments. This thesis was so extreme that Carlyle declared the ‘Jewish insolence’ of ‘Dizzy’ insupportable, and asked, ‘For how much longer shall John Bull allow this absurd monkey to dance upon his stomach?’

But in the matter of Judaism, Disraeli, who, because he had been baptised, declared himself to be a Christian, was both intransigent and ready for anything. By any and every means, without caring about possible scandal, he maintained the thesis of the alliance between the ‘conservatives’, now weakened in the manner we have discussed, and the Jews. To persecute the Jews would be the gravest error possible for the conservative party to commit, because it would turn them into chiefs of the revolutionary movements. There was also the moral question. ‘You teach your children the history of the Jews’, said Disraeli in his famous speech to the House of Commons, ‘and on your holy days you read at the tops of your voices the exploits of the Jews; on Sundays, if you wish to sing the praises of the Most High or to console yourselves in your misfortunes, you search among the songs of the Jewish poets for an expression of your feelings. In exact proportion to the sincerity of your faith you must accomplish this great act of natural justice . . . as a Christian (?) I will not take the terrible responsibility of excluding those who follow the religion in which my Lord and Saviour was born.’

He could have gone no further in impudence. In fact, this declaration caused a scandal among the ‘conservatives’, but one without consequences. The prudent and noiseless penetration of Jewry into the English upper classes and into the government itself continued. It was Disraeli who performed the coup upon Egypt in 1875 – with whose help? Rothschild. In 1875, the Khedive had financial worries and Disraeli managed to learn that he was willing to sell 177,000 shares of Suez Canal stock. This was a magnificent opportunity to gain certain control of the route to the Indies. The government hesitated. Rothschild did not. Here is the record of the historic conversation between Disraeli and Rothschild (Disraeli had asked him for four million pounds sterling): ‘What guarantee can you offer me?’ ‘The British government.’ ‘You shall have five million tomorrow.’ The interest on the loan was ‘extremely low’; naturally, the real and important interest of the Jewish clique lay on another and less visible plane . . .

Disraeli did not fail to make more convenient to the Jews of England their ritual observance. A little-known fact is that the ‘English Saturday’ is nothing other than the Jewish Sabbath, the ritual day of rest of the Jews. It was suitably Disraeli who introduced it to England, under an adequate social pretext.

Thus, as the Judaification of old feudal England was accomplished by diverse means, and as the old aristocracy gradually decomposed and underwent inoculation with ideas which would make it an easy prey for the material and spiritual influences of Judaism and Freemasonry, Disraeli did not forget his other task, that of augmenting and reinforcing the power of the new ‘Empire of Shopkeepers’, the new ‘Imperial Venice’, the reborn Israel of the Promise. This he did in a manner which was just as characteristically Jewish. Disraeli was one of the principal instigators of that sad and cynical English foreign policy by means of ‘protected’ third parties and the use of blackmail, which it pushes to the most extreme consequences. The most striking case is that of the Russo-Turkish War. Disraeli did not hesitate to betray the ancient cause of European solidarity, by placing Turkey under British protection. Turkey, defeated, was saved by Britain; by use of the well-known ‘English’ method of threats and sanctions, Disraeli was able to paralyse the Slavic advance to the South without a single shot being fired, and a grateful Turkey made him a present of Cyprus. At the Congress of Berlin, the Russian ambassador, Gortshakov, was unable to restrain himself from crying dolorously: ‘To have sacrificed a hundred thousand soldiers and a hundred million of money, and for nothing!’ * There is a factor even more serious, from a higher point of view. By virtue of this situation, brought about by Disraeli, Turkey was admitted into the community of the European nations protected by so-called ‘International Justice’. We say ‘so-called’ because, until that time, far from being held to be valid for all the peoples of the world, this justice was held to be valid uniquely among the group of the European nations; it was a form of recourse and of internal law for Europeans. With the admission of Turkey, a new phase of international law began, and this was truly the phase in which ‘justice’ became a mask and its ‘international’ character became a ruse of ‘democracy’, for it was simply an instrument in the service of Anglo-Jewry, and subsequently of the French also. This development led to the League of Nations, to crisis, and to actual war.

The last years of Disraeli’s life were nevertheless agitated ones. The misdeeds of the plutocracy and the pseudo-conservative cliques began to be felt when they brought about a general financial crisis, agricultural and even colonial, in the Empire of which Disraeli had dreamed and which had become a reality: there followed the Afghan Revolt, the Zulu War, and the prelude to the Boer War. The aged Disraeli, now Lord Beaconsfield and favourite of Queen Victoria, ended up losing his position. He was replaced by Gladstone. In spite of everything, this was a mere changing of the guard. The cabals, the ‘systems’, the directives of international imperialist politics, the false conservatism, the Jewish mentality which more and more destroyed the remains of the old ethic of the gentleman and of fair play in favour of a bottomless hypocrisy and materialism, all this survived and developed, in the form of the ‘British Empire’, from the time of Disraeli onwards, and always retained the mark of its author. Until today.

Tradition requires that each year the merchants of the City of London, home of the Anglo-Jewish plutocracy, invite the Lord Mayor to a banquet and receive the confidences and expressions of trust of the Prime Minister in a speech which he makes at this event. The last speech of this sort that Disraeli gave was another expression of the ‘imperialist’ faith. ‘For the English, to be patriots means to maintain the Empire, and in maintaining the Empire lies their liberty.’ However, one should say that, in the obstinate and hopeless war which England actually conducts, it is the spirit of the Jew Disraeli which lives on. If the English, by following this spirit, bring about the ruin of their ‘Empire’, and of their nation, it is to this champion of the Chosen People that they must be grateful.

Many will find it strange today that a friendship sprang up at the Congress of Berlin between the Jew Disraeli and Bismarck, the ‘Iron Chancellor’, a Prussian and an Aryan. They got along marvelously. ‘The old Jew, he’s the man!’, said Bismarck of Disraeli. There will be less cause for astonishment after reading de Poncins and Malynski’s The Occult War, recently translated by Evola (ed. Hoepli), which clarifies certain aspects of Bismarck’s activity, which, seen from a traditional and genuinely conservative point of view, are highly negative.

-------------------
[1] An analogous argument was made regarding 'Americanism' within his book, The Jews and Modern Capitalism by Werner Sombart. Sombart argues that early European settlers in America were always close to Jewish commercial activity and other "elements," and that this led to sensitivity to, and ultimately identification with, Jewish interests and goals.
[2] In this interview, Sir Mosley offers some perspectives on British history, at one point also remarking that in his view, the British Empire was ultimately rooted in heroism.
[3] I found the article I have reprinted here. Also, this blog post presents a view distinct from mine but congruent or complimentary to Evola's perspective of the British Empire.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

The Ecofascist Response: "Humanflood," by Pentti Linkola

The following was translated by Harri Heinonen and Michael Moynihan. The original article, as well as the introduction written by Michael Moynihan, may be found here. There are two other articles that trace the outline of ecofascism from a mainstream and a leftist perspective: Derek Wall's "Darker Shades of Green" and David Orton's "Ecofascism."

Pentti Linkola (1932-), Finnish ecologist.

What is man? "Oh, what art thou man?" the poets of the good old days used to wonder. Man may be defined in an arbitrary number of ways, but to convey his most fundamental characteristic, he could be described with two words: too much. I'm too much, you're too much. There's five billion of us - an absurd, astonishing number, and still increasing? The earth's biosphere could possibly support a population of five million large mammals of this size, given their food requirements and the offal they produce, in order that they might exist in their own ecological niche, living as one species among many, without discriminating against the richness of other forms of life.

What meaning is there in these masses, what use do they have? What essential new contribution is brought forth to the world by hundreds of human societies similar to one other, or by the hundreds of identical communities existing within these societies? What sense is there in the fact that every small Finnish town has the same choice of workshops and stores, a similar men's choir and a similar municipal theatre, all clogging up the earth's surface with their foundations and asphalt slabs? Would it be any loss to the biosphere - or to humanity itself - if the area of ??nekoski no longer existed, and instead in its place was an unregulated and diverse mosaic of natural landscape, containing thousands of species and tilting slopes of gnarled, primitive trees mirrored in the shimmering surface of Kuhmoj?rvi lake? Or would it really be a loss if a small bundle of towns disappeared from the map - Ylivieska, Kuusamo, lahti, Duisburg, Jefremov, Gloucester - and wilderness replaced them? How about Belgium?

What use do we have with Ylivieska? The question is not ingenious, but it's relevant. And the only answer isn't that, perhaps, there is no use for these places - but rather that the people in Ylivieska town have a reason: they live there. I'm not just talking about the suffocation of life due to the population explosion, or that life and the earth's respiratory rhythm cry out for the productive, metabolic green oases they sorely need everywhere, between the areas razed by man. I also mean that humanity, by squirting and birthing all these teeming, filth-producing multitudes from out of itself, in the process also suffocates and defames its own culture - one in which individuals and communities have to spasmodically search for the "meaning of life" and create an identity for themselves through petty childish arguing.

I spent a summer once touring Poland by bicycle. It is a lovely country, one where small Catholic children, cute as buttons, almost entirely dressed in silk, turn up around every corner. I read from a travel brochure that in Poland the percentage of people who perished in the Second World War is larger than in any other country - about six million, if my memory doesn't fail me. From another part of the brochure I calculated that since the end of the war, population growth has compensated for the loss threefold in forty years? On my next trip after that, I went through the most bombed-out city in the world, Dresden. It was terrifying in its ugliness and filth, overstuffed to the point of suffocation - a smoke-filled, polluting nest where the first spontaneous impression was that another vaccination from the sky wouldn't do any harm. Who misses all those who died in the Second World War? Who misses the twenty million executed by Stalin? Who misses Hitler's six million Jews? Israel creaks with overcrowdedness; in Asia minor, overpopulation creates struggles for mere square meters of dirt. The cities throughout the world were rebuilt and filled to the brim with people long ago, their churches and monuments restored so that acid rain would have something to eat through. Who misses the unused procreation potential of those killed in the Second World War? Is the world lacking another hundred million people at the moment? Is there a shortage of books, songs, movies, porcelain dogs, vases? Are one billion embodiments of motherly love and one billion sweet silver-haired grandmothers not enough?

All species have an oversized capacity for reproduction, otherwise they would become extinct in times of crisis due to variations of circumstances. In the end it's always hunger that enforces a limit on the size of a population. A great many species have self-regulating birth control mechanisms which prevent them from constantly falling into crisis situations and suffering from hunger. In the case of man, however, such mechanisms - when found at all - are only weak and ineffective: for example, the small-scale infanticide practiced in primitive cultures. Throughout its evolutionary development, humankind has defied and outdistanced the hunger line. Man has been a conspicuously extravagant breeder, and decidedly animal-like. Mankind produces especially large litters both in cramped, distressed conditions, as well as among very prosperous segments of the population. Humans reproduce abundantly in the times of peace and particularly abundantly in the aftermath of a war, owing to a peculiar decree of nature.

It may be said that man's defensive methods are powerless against hunger controlling his population growth, but his offensive methods for pushing the hunger line out of the way of the swelling population are enormously eminent. Man is extremely expansive - fundamentally so, as a species.

In the history of mankind we witness Nature's desperate struggle against an error of her own evolution. An old and previously efficacious method of curtailment, hunger, began to increasingly lose its effectiveness as man's engineering abilities progressed. Man had wrenched himself loose from his niche and started to grab more and more resources, displacing other forms of life. Then Nature took stock of the situation, found out that she had lost the first round, and changed strategy. She brandished a weapon she hadn't been able to employ when the enemy had been scattered in numbers, but one which was all the more effective now against the densely proliferating enemy troops. With the aid of microbes - or "infectious diseases" as man calls them, in the parlance of his war propaganda - Nature fought stubbornly for two thousand years against mankind and achieved many brilliant victories. But these triumphs remained localised, and more and more ineluctably took on the flavour of rear-guard actions. Nature wasn't capable of destroying the echelon of humanity in which scientists and researchers toiled away, and in the meantime they managed to disarm Nature of her arsenal.

At this point, Nature - no longer possessed of the weapons for attaining victory, yet utterly embittered and still retaining her sense of self-esteem - decided to concede a Pyrrhic victory to man, but only in the most absolute sense of the term. During the entire war, Nature had maintained her peculiar connection to the enemy: they had both shared the same supply sources, they drank from the same springs and ate from the same fields. Regardless of the course of the war, a permanent position of constraint prevailed at this point; for just as much as the enemy had not succeeded in conquering the supply targets for himself, Nature likewise did not possess the capability to take these same targets out of the clutches of humanity. The only option left was the scorched earth policy, which Nature had already tested on a small scale during the microbe-phase of the war, and which she decided to carry through to the bitter end. Nature did not submit to defeat - she called it a draw, but at the price of self-immolation. Man wasn't, after all, an external, autonomous enemy, but rather her very own tumour. And the fate of a tumour ordains that it must always die along with its host.

In the case of man - who sits atop the food chain, yet nevertheless ominously lacks the ability to sufficiently restrain his own population growth - it might appear that salvation would lie in the propensity for killing his fellow man. The characteristically human institution of war, with its wholesale massacre of fellow humanoids, would seem to contain a basis for desirable population control - that is, if it hadn't been portentously thwarted, since there is no human culture where young females take part in war. Thus, even a large decrease in population as a result of war affects only males, and lasts only a very short time in a given generation. The very next generation is up to strength, and by the natural law of the "baby boom" even becomes oversized, as the females are fertilised through the resilience of just a very small number of males. In reality, the evolution of war, while erratic, has actually been even more negative: in the early stages of its development there were more wars of a type that swept away a moderate amount of civilians as well. But by a twist of man's tragicomic fate, at the very point when the institution of war appeared capable of taking out truly significant shares of fertile females - as was intimated by the bombings of civilians in the Second World War - military technology advanced in such a way that large-scale wars, those with the ability to make substantial demographic impact, became impossible.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

In Defense of Saddam Hussein and His Regime

"The enemies forced strangers into our sea"
- Saddam Hussein, from his last poem
Saddam Hussein, his regime, and the 2003 US-led invasion of Iraq have returned to public discourse. The Chilcot report, recent praise of Saddam Hussein, and the continued terrorist attacks in Europe and the West are all integral to it. US Neoconservatives and leftists are finding common cause in this exchange. In the process, lies and distortions about Saddam Hussein and his regime are reappearing; I disentangle some of these claims.

Saddam Hussein (1937-2006) was already an influential political figure in Iraq from the 1968 coup that brought the Arab Socialist Ba'ath Party to power. He remained a decisive force in Iraqi politics through 1979, when he became President of Iraq. In 1990, after diplomacy with Kuwait failed, Iraq invaded Kuwait but was ejected by the US. In 2003, a US-led invasion deposed Saddam Hussein; following a mock trial, he was executed in late 2006.

Recent praise of Saddam Hussein, for suppressing terrorists and keeping his nation unified, has led to articles by Neoconservatives and liberals trying to deflect that praise. Meanwhile, the Chilcot Iraq war inquiry was made public in July 2016. Though most readily exploited by the left, its integral and crucial details and points are also relevant to nationalists.

Many articles criticizing praise for Saddam Hussein do so by pointing out that Iraq had been placed on the US list of "State Sponsors of Terrorism," first in 1979 and then again in 1990. The implication is supposed to be that Saddam's Iraq was not an enemy but a supporter of terrorism. The reality is that Iraq was placed on that list, not because it sponsored terrorism, but because its domestic and foreign policies agitated the regional aims of the US.

The first time it was placed on the list was because of the 1979 coup that brought Saddam Hussein to the Presidency. Signaling how shallow that decision was, Iraq was quickly taken off of the list after Iraq entered a US-backed war with Iran in the 1980s. The second time the US placed Iraq on that list was because Iraq agitated the US by invading Kuwait.

Few in the West understand this, and understand even less why Iraq had invaded Kuwait. In the late 1980s, Iraq was reeling from its war debts; the US-backed war compelled Iraq to get loans from Kuwait and the West. Iraq approached other OPEC countries in an effort to allow the price of oil to rise so Iraq could pay its debts. Kuwait not only refused, but even flooded the oil market, keeping the price of oil down and undermining Iraq's frail economy.

There is also substantial evidence that Kuwait had engaged in what is called "slant drilling," tapping and stealing Iraq's oil. All of this amounted to economic war and theft.[1]

In July 1990, a month before Iraq invaded Kuwait, US officials met with the Iraqi government and signaled that the US would not be involved in the Iraqi-Kuwaiti conflict. US Ambassador to Iraq, April Glaspie, told Saddam Hussein in July that the US "did not have an opinion" on that conflict. Saddam Hussein understandably interpreted this to mean that the US was and would remain neutral and it would not intervene against Iraq if it attacked Kuwait.

The actual US response to the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait contrasted sharply with what the US Ambassador to Iraq had indicated. Now, the US was loudly protesting the invasion and also demanded a withdrawal. It was this context that led the US to place Iraq on its list of "State Sponsors of Terrorism" for a second time. Despite what had been told to Saddam Hussein by Glaspie, the US Ambassador to Iraq, Iraq's action annoyed US policymakers.[2]

The Iraqi invasion may have irritated US regional aims, but it was not an act of terrorism or signaled support for terrorism. Placing Iraq back on that list was punishment.[3]

At this time, the Cold War was fading and the threat of Islamic fundamentalism appeared to be diminishing, and so the utility of Saddam's Iraq as an anti-Communist and anti-Islamist force was fading.[4] Neoconservative policymakers wanted to keep NATO in order to secure Israel and prevent new challenges to "democracy." Saddam's Iraq, recently an ally, was now a nuisance. Ten years later, Paul Wolfowitz seized on 9/11 to push for an invasion of Iraq. In "Phase Two" of the 9/11 Commission Report, Colin Powell had recalled that:
"Paul [Jewish author of the "Wolfowitz Doctrine"] was always of the view that Iraq was a problem that had to be dealt with," Powell told us. "And he saw this as one way of using this event [the fact of 9/11] as a way to deal with the Iraq problem."
What exactly was this "Iraq problem"? In 1989-91 the Cold War was ending and the US was now redefining its foreign policy. With an even more pronounced emphasis on Israel and its interests, an Iraq that was very recently an ally was now an irritant. Saddam Hussein was a supporter of the Palestinians and had always opposed Israeli regional dominance. This, and not any supposed support for terrorism or terrorists, was the "Iraq problem".[5]

Putting aside legitimate historical questions about the origin and context of 9/11, Wolfowitz used it to push for an invasion of Iraq. There was no link between Saddam's Iraq and 9/11. But Wolfowitz saw Saddam's Iraq as a persisting threat to Israel and he wanted to exploit US anger over 9/11 to push for war with Iraq. Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu was also pressing for it. The effort succeeded, and the pro-Israel lobby got its desired war.

Many other articles that ridicule praise for Saddam Hussein rely on question begging. Both Palestinians and Israelis have committed atrocities, but only Palestinian actions are branded "terrorist." Theft of Palestinian landmurder of Palestinian women, elders, and children, and Israeli atrocities with US complicity are not. Neoconservatives dominate this narrative, and so criticism of Israel is only found on the US left or the Paleoconservative right.

Saddam Hussein's support for the Palestinians is also repeatedly mentioned, including aid to families of "suicide bombers" that attacked Israel. Is US complicity in Israeli atrocities also going to count as support for "terrorism," or are the victims required to be Israeli? Perhaps what all of this amounts to is just support for opposing sides in a lasting conflict.

Recent articles have also cited the attempt on the life of US President G.H.W. Bush in April 1993, when he visited Kuwait. After suspects were arrested and interrogated, the authorities in Kuwait claimed the men confessed to receiving orders from the Iraqi security service. But incredulity saturates this narrative. The suspects retracted their "confession" and said they were tortured. In the article, "Did Iraq really plot to kill Bush?," the author observes:
In Washington there were some doubters, particularly in the Pentagon. They said that the way the Kuwaitis had interviewed their prisoners made their testimony useless... The implication is that the 14 men under arrest were tortured, though the FBI, which later interviewed them, denies this... The trial itself opened before the heavily guarded state security court on 5 June, the first time the accused had been seen by anybody except the police since their arrests.
The official narrative entails dignifying "confessions" taken by a Kuwaiti regime aching for revenge on Iraq. The narrative is spurious and calls for accepting ridiculous assumptions. As the author of the above article concludes, the idea that Saddam Hussein ordered the plot is "difficult to take seriously."[6] The plot was amateurish, and one "ringleader" was a Shi'ite Muslim that took part in a rebellion against Saddam's Sunni-dominated regime.[7]

Also, after the 2003 US-led invasion, Iraqi government files were thoroughly combed. There was no record of anything relating to Hussein's supposed support for this plot.

The ongoing spurt of distorted, misleading, and groundless claims about Saddam Hussein is a reminder of how truly weak the case was for his removal in 2002-03. The emotional and hyperbolic ideation and inflection that it relied on underlies this point, such as the awkward and infantile remark by US President Bush referring to Hussein as "the guy who tried to kill my dad." This materialized in a cesspool of confused and twisted justifications.

The ideological undercurrent justifying the war presupposed a continuance of World War II, replete with comparisons of Hussein and Hitler. In 2006, Donald Rumsfeld cast the Iraq war as a US-led effort against a "new type of fascism."[8] This narrative was supported by some intellectuals, including Christopher Hitchens. He spoke of the horrors of "Islamofascist" rule and also organized a 2009 forum that branded the 1979 coup as a "fascist" coup.

The use of 'genocide' has also increased. In one article, Kurds express gratitude for the Iraq war having prevented the "genocide" of the Kurdish people. In another article, the author accuses Iraq of having committed "genocides" [plural] on the Iraqi people. In "It's 2003 again..." the author predicts a past future: "some form of international military intervention to stop Saddam Hussein was going to occur, either before or after a genocide."

If authors inventing counterfactuals to support their baseless assumptions were not enough, claims that Hussein "sheltered" terrorists also proliferate despite rank hypocrisy. The Jewish war criminal and Stalinist terrorist, Salomon Morel, took refuge in Israel. Poland repeatedly requested his extradition, but Israel refused. Morel, who had murdered and terrorized POWs and civilians, died in peace and comfort in his refuge in Tel Aviv, Israel.

In addition, the false flag USS Liberty incident, in which Israeli agents destroyed a US naval vessel and murdered 34 US citizens, was a deliberate attempt to provoke the US into war with Israel's enemies. It was intentionally covered up to spare Israel humiliation.[9]

The legacy of Saddam Hussein is treated as a simplistic narrative of constant atrocities, with no semblance of recognition for any positive achievement. Even if praise is offered for him, it is usually limited to a functional and relational role relative to Western and US interests. Saddam Hussein's regime had positive achievements to its name, on its own, and one way to refocus the persisting debate is to try to understand what many of these were.

Saddam Hussein became President in 1979, but during the decade prior to this he worked toward building up Iraq as a nation capable of enjoying a relative degree of prosperity, weal, and independence from foreigners. It should be remembered that the geopolitical context of Iraq's emergence as a modern nation followed in the wake of imploding British imperialism and its evaporation from a Middle East, including Iraq, that it had once dominated.


Before Saddam Hussein's regime, Iraq was a an illiterate and a destitute country. Saddam Hussein was determined to lift Iraq out of the residue of his nation's deprivation. Among other things, he sponsored numerous educational initiatives, including the "National Campaign for the Eradication of Literacy" and a program of "Compulsory Free Education in Iraq." These initiatives led to an increase in literacy; hundreds of thousands of Iraqis benefited.


Saddam Hussein made such strides in advancing his educational agenda that he was the recipient of a UNESCO award for achieving higher literacy and living standards.[10]

In addition to an increase in living standards and access to education, literacy, and a variety of social services, Saddam Hussein also used the revenue from oil sales to increase access to basic services, such as electricity, in cities and towns were they had previously been lacking. He also ensured that families of Iraqi soldiers and officials received pensions and state support. Through the 1970s and 1980s, there was an increased quality of life:
During the 1970s, a relatively peaceful interlude when he exercised real control as second-in-command to a weak president, dozens of ambitious projects swiftly created a first-class infrastructure of expressways, power lines and social services. In neighbouring countries, the oil boom generated garish consumption and commission billionaires. Iraqis could fairly claim that their national wealth had been used instead to create a broad, home-owning middle class, the symbol of which was the “Brazili”, a stripped-down Volkswagen bought by the million from Brazil. Generous state subsidies lifted even the very poor out of need. Corruption was unknown.[11]
Saddam Hussein also sponsored and promoted culture and the arts. Ballet, dance, and the promotion of cultural literacy and music education rose under his influence.[12] This is partly evident viewing the documentary, "What Was Life Really Life in Saddam's Iraq?"

Saddam Hussein's regime provided stability and security, a difficult feat to which ongoing strife in the Middle East serves as an enduring testimony. His regime welded and unified Christians, Muslims, and Jews, and while he was tolerant of religious groups in his country, he suppressed strife and discord. In 2006, following a shameful trial and execution, an Iraqi Christian interviewed by Al-Jazeera said of him: "We were heartbroken for him."

The failure to convey anything positive about Saddam's regime is echoed by the incessant depiction of a one-sided personality, despite owning positive personal qualities.

To take one example, Saddam Hussein was praised for his generosity. In 1980, Rev. Jacob Yasso of the Chaldean Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Detroit congratulated Hussein on his Presidency. Hussein later heard that Rev. Yasso's Church was suffering from debts, and he paid them off. Coleman Young, Mayor of Detroit, was so moved by the act that he allowed Rev. Yasso to present Saddam Hussein with the key to the city of Detroit.[13]

According to Rev. Yasso, Saddam Hussein donated to other religious groups throughout the world: "He was a very kind person; very generous..." and "very kind to Christians."

Saddam Hussein could also be very humble and hospitable. In 1981, he financed the film, Clash of Loyalties, which starred British actor Oliver Reed. The production of the film was arduous and many scenes had to be shot repeatedly. Reed was given to drunken outbursts, testing the patience of those involved in the film. Despite this, Reed was to a dinner. At its end, Saddam said calmly: "Mr. Reed, I hope I didn't bore you too much."[14]

Saddam Hussein was a prolific writer. He wrote four novels, including Zabibah and the KingThe Fortified CastleMen and the City, and Begone, Demons. His last poem, "Unbind It," was addressed to the Iraqi people and was written while he was awaiting execution.

These and other details about Saddam Hussein, his personality, and his regime, compliment a broader understanding of the realities surrounding his relationship with the US and his place in history. These are distorted by prevailing narratives that cast him in an overly simplistic role, shorn of any positive qualities. Articles deflecting praise for Saddam Hussein do so by exploiting these narratives and perpetuating outworn myths, lies, and distortions.

Saddam Hussein was a native son of Iraq, and his regime was an organic outgrowth of the history of his country, which he sought to unify and make sovereign, and whose people he offered a degree of prosperity and stability. His regime was not a threat to the US, but was a blight to elements in the US government and Israel that wanted him removed. In the end, he was felled by forces that had destroyed countless others with similar aspirations.

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1. "Slant drilling" is the act of tapping a neighboring country's oil resources. John K. Cooley, "It's Time to Think Straight About Saddam," 1997, New York Times. In addition, Israel was also threatening to move against Iraq in response to any attack on Kuwait.
2. See the first half of my post, "Unjustified Claims Regarding Islamism and Fascism," for a discussion of the context of the Wolfowitz Doctrine at the end of the Cold War.
3. Lionel Beehner, in his article, "What good is a terrorism list?" argues that the "State Sponsor of Terrorism" list "exists solely to punish enemies, not to cajole them to stop sponsoring terrorists. Landing on it places limits on the size and scope of arms, economic aid and other financial transactions a country can have with American citizens. By promising to remove a country from it, we dangle a carrot..." in front of that country.
4. The documentary, "Saddam Hussein - The Truth," argues this point, among many others.
5. See the IHR article, "Iraq: A War for Israel" and its article, "Iraq was invaded to secure Israel" for numerous additional references and context-sensitive quotes.
6. See also "Plot by Baghdad to Assassinate Bush is Questioned," 1993, New York Times.
7. See also this article.
8. After the fall of Hussein's government, Rumsfeld further gloated that "Saddam Hussein is now taking his rightful place alongside Hitler, Stalin, Lenin, Ceausescu in the pantheon of failed brutal dictators and the Iraqi people are well on their way to freedom..."
9. See the following IHR articles, for more context: "Israeli Attack on USS Liberty Was No Accident" and "Israel's 'Knife in the Back' Against America."
10. See the Spartacus International entry on Saddam Hussein.
11. "Saddam Hussein: The Blundering Dictator," 2007, The Economist.
12. Saddam Hussein's efforts to increase the educational and cultural level of Iraq were all unsurpassed in his country and far ahead of most nations in his region.
13. Sue Chan, "Guess who got the key to Detroit?" 2003, CBS News.
14. The film, Clash of Loyalties, has been uploaded and can be found here.

See also the following: Ramsey Clark, the lawyer who defended Saddam, "In Defense of Saddam Hussein"; Jude Wanniski, "In Defense of Saddam Hussein"; the PBS documentary, "The War Behind Closed Doors" and a "Review" of the PBS documentary.