The BBC has got itself into a religious mood – but the wrong religion. The corporation’s presenters and commentators now speak reverentially of ‘the Holy Month of Islam’, but we never hear them refer to the penitential seasons of Lent or Advent, or indeed to Holy Week. A friend told me she turned on Thought for the Day on Ascension Day, expecting to hear some mention of that great Christian festival. Instead it was all about Eid.
In the West we have become our own enemies because we have come to prefer the cult of Islam over the European Christian civilisation against which it has waged imperialistic wars for 1,400 years. Here is a summary of its imperialistic incursions and attempted conquests over the last millennium and beyond:
In AD 732 an invading Muslim army of as many as 200,000 men was defeated by the Christian Charles Martel at Tours. If that battle had been lost, all Europe would have fallen to militant Islam. In 1565 the relief of the Siege of Malta, by a Christian alliance, ensured that the Mediterranean did not fall into Muslim hands and so give them a toehold in southern Europe.
Following the defeat of the Muslim Turks by the Knights of St John at Malta in 1565, there came the Battle of Lepanto on October 7, 1571 when a fleet of the Holy League, a coalition of Spain (including its territories of Naples, Sicily and Sardinia), the Republic of Venice, the Papacy, the Republic of Genoa, the Duchy of Savoy, the Knights Hospitaller and others, decisively defeated the main fleet of the Ottoman Empire.
Then there was that other September 11 – 1683 – when Christian armies under Jan Sobieski arrived at the gates of Vienna and defeated the last substantial Muslim aggression: the last, that is, before the one we face at present.
What was intended by the French Revolution of 1789, and only partially accomplished – the extermination of Christian values and practice throughout the continent – has been completed by our wokery which is the final phase (actually the death throes) of the secularisation of our society. Secular values are precisely the opposite of Christian values. In the 18th century, Chateaubriand wrote: ‘The unbelief of the Enlightenment philosophers has brought abstract definitions, a scientific style and neologisms: all fatal to taste and eloquence.’ Fatal to Christianity too. For the taste of such as La Fontaine, Pascal, Moliere, Racine and Bossuet – and Bach, Mozart, Haydn and Schubert – was created by the Christian faith. Even Nietzsche could say ‘God is dead!’ only because Christian saints had proclaimed ‘God is alive!’
Western civilisation which was created by Christianity has committed suicide. In his Essay on Metaphysics, R G Collingwood describes exactly how this has come about:
‘Civilisations sometimes perish because they are broken up by the armed attack of enemies without or revolutionaries within, but never from this cause alone. Such attacks never succeed unless the thing that is attacked is weakened by doubt as to the end which it sets before itself, the form of life which it tries to realise, is worth achieving. On the other hand, this doubt is quite capable of destroying a civilisation without any help whatever. If the people who share a civilisation are no longer on the whole convinced that the form of life which it tries to realise is worth realising, nothing can save it.’
So today the Christian heroes who saved Europe from barbarous Islam – Charles Martel, Richard the Lionheart and Jan Sobieski – would be denounced for their Islamophobia and ‘cancelled’. It is here that we see the complete inversion, the thorough revolution, that has taken place. Criticise Islam, however gently and politely, and you will be charged with hate crime and with being ‘Islamophobic’. You will be arraigned, fined, even imprisoned; you will certainly be deprived of your status and very likely your job. But when Christians are reviled and persecuted on the grand scale and on four continents, there is no condemnation of the perpetrators.
There is no such word as Christianophobia.