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About Alexander Maistrovoy
Alexander Maistrovoy is a columnist for the Israeli Russian-language newspaper Novosty Nedely.
Past Articles
A Pinnacle of Self-Destruction

Alexander Maistrovoy
A Pinnacle of Self-Destruction
July 17, 2009

It is difficult to discern which civilizations Samuel Huntington was referring to when he espoused a "clash of civilizations.” Those who think he wrote about Islamic civilization on the one hand and the West on the other, make a mistake. There is no such conflict. It is inherently impossible. The events of the latest decades show that the civilizations in question are far from clashing. On the contrary, they cooperate and complement one another.


Any conflict assumes that both parties have ideological oppositions, pride, courage, and a desire to fight. If one of the parties doesn’t possess these characteristics, nor will to resist, or at least an aspiration to survive, the conflict does not exist. There is a simple absorption of one civilization by another, a kind of submission or assault. The situation becomes even more hopeless if one of the parties not only obediently submits to an aggressor and tyrant, but meets the conqueror with readiness and enthusiasm.


Can there be a conflict between a sadist and a masochist; hatred and self-hatred; aggression and self-flagellation? Certainly not. Such pairs complement one another ideally.


It is difficult to find more hatred of the West, than in the West itself. Listen and read what the representatives of the Western elite – academics, novelists and show-business stars – say, and you will find no difference in their ideas and those of the leaders of the Taliban or al Qaeda. Do the judgments of Tom Hayden differ from those of Muqtada al Sadr? Is Noam Chomsky or Susan Sontag different in their sentiments and statements regarding the United States from those of  Mullah Omar? Sean Penn hates America as strongly as the Islamists do.


"Washington prepares genocide in Afghanistan...The plan is ready, and will be carried out even if it causes the destruction of several million people within the next several months. But it excites nobody,” it was espoused shortly after September 11th, 2001. By whom? Perhaps by Osama bin Laden? Or Ayman Zawahiri? No, the contention was offered up by Noam Chomsky, a liberals' idol on both sides of the Atlantic.


Who described September 11th as a "natural result of a culture of violence, hunger and brutal exploitation”? It was a Nobel Prize Laureate Dario Fo.


Who enthusiastically, with certain ecstasy and passion, wrote after the bloody orgy, "America, now it's your turn to understand how ruthless hatred can be!”?  It was neither Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, nor Hassan Nasrallah nor Bashar Assad. These words belong to a popular British short-story writer, Martin Louis Amis.


Here is the statement of a French philosopher Jean Baudrillard, one of the pillars of Postmodernism: "It was al Qaeda who did it, but we had longed for it.”


And what about academics and college professors? Could the rhetoric of Osama bin Laden be compared with the triumphant delight of Dr. Richard Berthold from the University of New Mexico after September 11th: "Anybody who blows up the Pentagon gets my vote.”


David C. Hendrickson, a professor at Colorado College, compared George W. Bush to Stalin. Poor Stalin...A refined sadist and pathological murderer, he would turn in his grave if he heard the professor. To be compared to Bush, who had not managed to destroy a handful of badly armed terrorists in Baghdad for five years. If Stalin’s Red Army had occupied Baghdad, not only terrorists, but Baghdad itself would have ceased existence in a week's time. And not a single one of the present liberals would have uttered a word of protest. The reason for it is this: they admire force and Stalin was the embodiment of force.


The weak-willed politics of the present Western leaders is just a cadre of attempts to appease the aggressors. It is the tendency toward servitude and worship of force – an affinity for the feminization of society – that impregnates the cultural establishment of the West.


The liberals' passionate hatred of their own civilization reminds us of revolutionaries – communists and anarchists of the beginning of the last century – and their hatred of capitalism.  At first glance, we observe a certain ideological continuity. However, the initial impression is deceptive. Lenin, Trotsky and their followers had quite distinct political aims:


▪ First, full "redistribution” of property and its transfer to the new "proletarian” elite


▪ Second, the world revolution and world supremacy


The first task was completely fulfilled. All of the czarist Russian elite: aristocracy, nobility and merchants were either killed or expelled. Stalin came close to the fulfillment of the second task. However, the inconsistent economic policy and the system crisis which struck the former USSR prevented the realization of this grandiose plan.


What are the aims of the Western liberal elite? There are none. There is no need to expropriate anybody because, contrary to the Russian marginal-revolutionaries, they belong to the ruling establishment. As for the second purpose, their dominant position allows them to effectively and successfully promote liberal values to the most gloomy and destitute corners of the modern world. Instead they consistently and purposefully destroy the foundations of their own civilization; support the most ominous forces which dream of the destruction of a free society.


There is one more essential moment. Revolutionaries of the beginning of the 20th century were representative of national minorities – Jews, Germans, Poles, Latvian, Georgians, Chinese, etc. They despised Russia and Russian culture because they themselves were considered to be men of the meaner sort. On the contrary, the Western liberals are one-hundred percent Americans, Englishmen, Frenchmen and Spaniards who, according to the logic of things, have no reasons to hate their countries or wish for their destruction. Nevertheless, they are afflicted with a desire to see their culture writhing in agony at the feet of triumphant Islamic fanatics and the ordinary gangsters and demagogues of Hugo Chavez and his kind.


So, we see a case of causeless, self-destructive self-hatred. This senseless and absolutely irrational self-hatred can only be explained by one thing: the suicide syndrome characteristic of cultures in their last stage of dying. In the absence of ideals, vital forces and even an instinct of self-preservation, they surrender themselves to barbarians; with flattering and even masochistic humility they give themselves up to rough and despotic conquerors.


When Alaric entered Rome, he was amazed by a great number of Romans, who like the Germans, wore bear skins and worshiped German idols. Rome had submitted to barbarians long before it fell to their hands. There's a paradox in the fact that Alaric, Theodoric, and other German leaders did their best to preserve the heritage of ancient Rome. However, one can never expect the same from future conquerors of the West.


If you wish to understand the essence of post-modernism read Michel Foucault, a French historian and philosopher. He wrote:


"The death of God does not restore us to a limited and positivistic world, but to a world exposed by the experience of its limits, made and unmade by that excess which transgresses it.


The West is approaching a return to its starting point, the starting point of the existence of the human being: chaos, senselessness, boundless permissiveness. According to all laws of dialectics, such a system cannot exist for long time. Chaos requires suppression, a ruthless supervisor, a despot who will cruelly return human beings to their bounds. This ruthless and cruel despot will be fanatical Islam and the Western elite is eagerly waiting for it. So, the words of the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr. Rowan Williams, about the inevitability of Sharia Law in Britain seem quite natural.


Will we see a true conflict of civilizations? Maybe, yes. Perhaps a fast developing and dynamic India, along with a powerful China complete with other Far East "dragons”, and Russia restoring its role of the "Third Rome,” can resist the rising Islamic Caliphate. There may also be splinters of the Western Christian civilization that will survive in Australia, New Zealand, some countries in Eastern Europe or Latin America. But for the West it will be of no importance...
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