De Mattei: Brexit and the Decline of the West

El Brexit y la decadencia de Occidente

The British referendum of June 23rd (Brexit) has sanctioned the definitive collapse of a myth: the dream of “a “Europe without frontiers”, built on the ruins of its national States.

The Europeanist project, launched by the Maastricht Treaty in 1992, had in itself the seeds of its own self-destruction. It was completely illusory to expect the implementation of an economic, monetary union before a political union; or, even worse, to envisage using monetary integration in order to establish political unification.

The plan, though, to reach political unity by extirpating those spiritual roots that bind men together was even more illusory. The Charter of Fundamental Human Rights of the European Union approved by the European Council in Nice in December 2000, not only expunges any reference to Europe’s religious roots, but has in itself a visceral negation of the natural and Christian order. Article 21, by introducing the prohibition of any discrimination related to “sexual tendencies”, contains, in nuce, the legalization of the crime of homophobia and pseudo-homosexual marriage.

The “Constitution” project worked on by the Convention on the Future of Europe between 2002 and 2005, was rejected by two popular referendums, in France on May 29th 2005 and in Holland on June 1st of the same year. Nevertheless, the Eurocrats never gave up. After two years of “reflection”, the Lisbon Treaty, which should have been ratified exclusively through parliament, was approved by the EU Heads of State and Government on December 13th 2007. The only country called upon to voice their opinion on the referendum, Ireland, rejected the Treaty on June 13th 2008, but unanimity being necessary from the signatory States, a new referendum was imposed on the Irish, which thanks to very strong economic and media pressure, finally gave the positive result.

During its short life, the European Union, incapable of defining foreign policies and ordinary security measures, has turned itself into an ideological tribune, which churns out resolutions and directives, pushing national Governments to free themselves of traditional family values. Inside the EU, Great Britain, pressed on the brakes to slow down the Franco-German plan for a European “Super-State”, but instead, pressed-down on the accelerator by diffusing, on a European scale, it own “civic conquests” from abortion to euthanasia, from adoptions by homosexuals to genetic engineering. This moral deviation was accompanied in England by [a sort of] multicultural drunkenness, culminating in the election of the first Muslim Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan in May 2016.

However, even in 2009, the then conservative Mayor, Boris Johnson, invited all Londoners to participate, at least for a day, in the Ramadan fast and then attend the Mosque at sunset. More recently, the Prime Minister, David Cameron, contending the American presidential candidate, Donald Trump, said he was: «proud of representing a country which is one of the most successful multi-racial, multi-faith, multi-ethnic countries in the world» (Huffpost Politics, 15th May 2016).

Brexit certainly signifies a surge of pride for a nation that has a long history of antique tradition. Nevertheless, the identity and freedom of a nation are founded on respect for the Divine and natural Law and no political action can restore the freedom a country has lost on account of its own moral decadence. The ‘no’ to the European Union was a protest against the arrogance of an oligarchy which claims to decide – without the people and against the people – the interests of the people.

Even so, the strong powers which impose Brussels’ bureaucratic rules are the same ones that are undoing the West’s moral rules. Those who accept the LGTB dictatorship lose the right to claim their own Independence Day, as they have already renounced their own identity. Those who renounce defending the moral boundaries of a nation, lose the right to defend its borders, as they have already accepted the “fluid” conception of a global society. Under this aspect, Great Britain’s’ self-dissolution itinerary follows a dynamic that Brexit cannot arrest and which, rather, may be part of another stage.

Scotland is already threatening a new referendum to leave the United Kingdom, followed by Northern Ireland. Further, when the Queen, who is 90 years old, leaves the throne, it is not excluded that some countries of the Commonwealth will declare their independence. Someone said that Queen Elizabeth had been crowned the Empress of the British Empire and will die as the head of ‘a Little England’. This itinerary of political disunion though, has as its final outcome the republicanising of England.

In 2017 the three hundredth centenary of the founding of London’s Great Lodge, the mother of modern Freemasonry, will be commemorated. Yet, Freemasonry, which in the XVIII and XIX centuries used Protestant and Deist England to diffuse its revolutionary programme throughout the world, today seems determined to ditch the English Monarchy, in which it sees one of the last symbols still surviving from the Medieval order.

After Brexit, scenarios of disintegration may open up in Greece as a result of the explosion of the economic and social crisis; in France, where the urban peripheries are menaced by a Jihadist civil war; in Italy as a result of the unstoppable migratory invasion; in east Europe, where Putin is ready to profit from the weakness of European institutions to take control of eastern Ukraine and exercise military pressure on the Baltic States.

The British General, Alexander Richard Shirreff, former Vice-Commander of NATO from 2011 to 2014, foresaw in the form of a novel, (2017 War with Russia. An Urgent Warning From Senior Military Command, Coronet, London 2016), the break-out of a nuclear war between Russia and the West in May 2017, a date which reminds Catholics of something. How to forget, on this first centenary of Fatima, Our Lady’s words, that many nations will be annihilated and Russia will be the instrument God will use to punish impenitent mankind?

Faced with these prospectives the conservative parties themselves are split. If Marine Le Pen in France, Geert Wilders in Holland and Matteo Salvini in Italy are asking for their Countries’ exit from the European Union and are placing their hopes in Putin, the positions of the Hungarian Prime Minister, Viktor Orban and the Polish leader Jaroslaw are very different; they see in the European Union and NATO a barrier to the Russian expansion.

The Decline of the West ((Der Untergang des Abendlandes) by Oswald Spengler appeared in 1917. One hundred years later, the German writer’s prophecy seems about to be fulfilled. “The West” , before being a geographic space, is the name of a civilization. This civilization is Christian Civilization, heir to the classical Greco-Roman culture which from Europe spread to the Americas and its faraway offshoots in Asia and Africa.

It had its baptism the night of St. Paul’s dream, when God gave the Apostle the order to turn his back on Asia and “go through Macedonia” to proclaim the good news (Acts, XVI, 6-18). Rome was the place of St. Peter and Paul’s martyrdom and the centre of the civilization that was emerging. Spengler, convinced of the inexorable decline of the West, recalls a sentence from Seneca: Ducunt volentem fata, nolentem trahunt (Destiny guides those who want to be guided and drags those who don’t want to be [guided]”.

We however, counter Spengler’s relativist and determinist vision with that of St. Augustine, who, while the barbarians were attacking Hippone, announced the victory in history of the City of God, continuously guided by Divine Providence. Man is the artifice of his own destiny and with the help of God the twilight of civilization can be transformed into the dawn of a resurrection. Nations are mortal, but God never dies and the Church never wanes.