“We here at the Daily Stormer hate all non-Whites, and believe they should be exterminated.”
Editor’s note: Originally posted on February 24, 2016, I am relocating this post to this day. Edwin’s piece, an original for The West’s Darkest Hour, hits the nail about what is wrong with today’s Weltanschauung even among racialists circles.
The ethno-nationalist question needs to be handled with a certain degree of intricacy and delicacy.
Goethe expresses the ideal of ethnos by the phrase: “Outwardly limited; inwardly limitless.” Only by limiting myself within a specific local history, people, language and geographic boundary is it possible to develop an authentic Personality. Only by renouncing political involvement and accepting traditional authority (aristocracy) can I attain an inner freedom. Only from the organic development of a distinct nation held together by blood and soil can I acquire culture and produce works of art (symbols) that transcend earthly boundaries. This notion of individuation as a long heroic journey only for a few is entirely foreign to the mindset of the White American.
There is no question that White Nationalism in all its various incarnations has been an abysmal failure, and that ethno-nationalism, within the European context, is presently the only source of public resistance to the ongoing program of dissolution and displacement implemented by the globalists. It seems inconceivable at the present moment that the salvation of Aryan man will not involve using the hidden reservoirs of resentment brought to the surface by ethno-nationalist parties, if only for tactical reasons. The European masses at present seem incapable of rising above petty politics to unite under a common banner. Also, the hate crime legislations currently existing in Europe make more radical forms of resistance almost impossible. Consequently, we can conceive of ethno-nationalism as merely a transitory political phenomenon; a temporary stop-gap supported with grave reservations until political conditions (the Plebs) are ripe for truly revolutionary politics.
Ethno-nationalism, considered strictly as a theory, posits a return to a more authentic, traditional way of life, a golden age in which society was structured vertically. There is a romantic element that captures the imagination at a sub-intellectual emotive level, promising a life of meaning beyond the material. The simple argument of allowing the right of self-determination for distinct ethnicities sounds sensible for those that live within the modern world.
But ethno-nationalism in practice poses a number of serious problems:
Secessionists in America assume a priori that non-whites have a distinct separate ethnos and are capable of creating a viable nation state without the active intervention of whites. With few exceptions, racial “realists” believe that some sort of practical accommodation can be made with Blacks and other mud bloods; according to this fantasy, North America will eventually devolve into a dozen independent nations, divided along racial and linguistic lines. In this new political dispensation, Blacks are to be given their own slice of paradise under the sun, free to live among their own kind and to pursue their own destiny. We are told by self-anointed intellectuals like Spencer, McDonald, and Johnson, that racial separation will be likened to a friendly “divorce”; contra history, population transfers will be “humane” and “peaceful,” with no shedding of innocent blood. Never mind the fact that this new Black Zion will be a grotesque farrago of Western and African culture, a pantomime of political theater, merely resembling the outward form of a state. Never mind the fact that blacks lack the ability to build a modern infrastructure and will face starvation. But no! Our intellectuals tell us that we must not believe our eyes (Africa, Haiti, Detroit); facts, in this one instance, do not matter. We have dispensed with Christian theology but must still believe in miracles!
Ethno-nationalism, being a by-product of modernity, always panders to the lowest common denominator. Every single ethno-nationalist party in Europe adopts a horizontal understanding of power, claiming to represent the true “will of the people” by defending mass democracy. No present elected leader offers a higher ideal or unifying principle. Economics and base materialism rule every policy decision. Every national history is largely a sad tale of petty victimhood, as though presenting a nation as a perpetual innocent “victim” that has undergone enormous suffering somehow ennobles and valorizes its right to exist; as though presenting the nation as a total weakling can be a source of strength and unity. And even if such a leader were to emerge, a leader who does not prostitute himself by promising to satisfy every material want, a leader who demands harsh discipline and allows for no excuses, the masses would not follow him. Europe has reached such a state of total degradation that the Finn, Kai Murros, finds it necessary to adopt the style of a Maoist Dialectician (!), if only to dress his revolutionary nationalism under a “respectable” analytical framework. Surveying the political landscape, the words of Nietzsche come to mind: “On the rulers I turned my back, when I saw what they now call ruling. To traffic and bargain for power—with the rabble!” The question must be asked: Can the debased White American with no ethnic identity support ethnic-nationalism? Or to be blunt: Can a White American value an object if no financial gain is possible?
Ethno-nationalists treat all European ethnicities like antiquarian idol-objects; they deserve preservation simply because of age, as if all were of equal value. Practically every single racial “realist” in Europe and America considers the question of biological differences and cultural achievements among indigenous European nationalities to be a social taboo. He is happy to point out the racial differences between Whites and Blacks yet becomes apoplectic if shortcomings among European populations are pointed out.
Why should anyone care about preserving Polish or Croatian identity if their impact on world history is negligible? How does that advance the interests of Aryan man? What exactly does ethno-nationalism mean for a country (i.e. Greece, Portugal) that includes a significant number of mud bloods among its native population? The ethno-nationalists have no answer.
The proposition that any nation state, like the National Socialists of yesteryear, may expand its territory and impose a new order from above is treated as a modern day heresy by ethno-nationalists. Even the apologist David Irving is critical of Hitler and the National Socialists for refusing to grant self-determination for the Slavic people of the East. Lesser personalities such as Andrew Anglin and Carolyn Yeager are no better and find it necessary to rationalize the harsh treatment of the Slavs by the Germans.
Ethno-nationalism is not enough for all men. There are a few differentiated men who have an inner orientation and perspective totally foreign from everyone else. Such men recognize that their identities cannot be so easily circumscribed by the nation or tribe, and always feel a sense of alienation around other people. They recognize that they are part of a great chain of Being stretching back to pre-historic time. They see kindred racial spirits in the Aryans of Ancient India and Persia. They see themselves as spiritual heirs to the cultural patrimony left to us by the Greco-Roman world. Their horizons extend beyond the narrow confines of a nation state toward the idea of an Empire. They feel no moral qualms over outrageous territorial expansion. They look with outright disgust and nausea at what passes for “culture” in the modern era. These men have a naturally artistic temperament and are united by a common purpose: there must be a fanatical pursuit of beauty at whatever the cost.
Goethe, Nietzsche, H.S. Chamberlain, Oliver, Pierce, and a few others belong to this rare category of men. Contrast this with present day ethno-nationalists whose view of history does not stretch back even a hundred years—as though the idea of an Empire, of Rome or Greece never existed!
National Socialism is the perfect fusion of German nationalism with the artistic temperament of Ancient Greece and with the martial valor of Rome. When asked for his reason for joining the National Socialist Party, the philosopher Martin Heidegger replied: “It was the one political movement in the twentieth century that took an essentially tragic view of life. That managed to bring the ethos of the Ancient Greeks 2500 years into the present.”
Nietzschean morality requires that superior men surrender all hope of personal gain for the sake of the cause: fame, money, wealth, respectability, hope for an afterlife, even a normal family life if need be. If they can die for the cause, living in penury if need be is mild by comparison.
The German Idealists already pointed out that sincere authentic “virtue” requires a man to have no possibility for personal gain. Otherwise, what is the whole point of this struggle if whites merely end up as spiritual semites (inner Jews)?
Very few American Whites grasp this. Pierce and David Lane being the notable exceptions.
“Earning the approval of the liberal media is not going to happen. Making them fear you is a realistic possibility.
Anders Breivik killed dozens of our enemies. He demonstrated that effective resistance is possible and can be accomplished by just one man. Anybody who tries to take away from that under the guise of morality is a coward and a fool.”
Today’s comment on a WDH thread:
I took a hard look at the behavior of white women around me, and all those I knew…
I will admit that I was wrong. We can not live if we don’t have the willingness to slaughter those who are planning and executing the destruction of our race. Violence is the answer, now more than ever. Those who are willing to live will fight, and those not willing to fight will be hunted down and butchered alive for treason. Any creature which willingly serves its own children as a sacrifice to a diversity god must be destroyed in rivers of blood.
I now understand after reviewing the state of Aryan men and women around me, that your proposed methods don’t go too far enough. What we need more than anything is the complete annihilation of anything that is even remotely liberal, jewish, and unaryan. Drugs, sex, porn, alcohol, vice, and degeneracy—like the whores of late Rome they all indulge in the Semitic sins. They are not our people. Even if they carry our genes those will too be lost with time. They are wholly an abomination and deserve to be purified. Allowing them to spread the cancer the Jew has infected them with would be suicide.
While I still try to cling to Aryan honor, tradition and high culture and spirituality, I realize these things are what blinded me from seeing this abhorrent creature that they truly are. I had seen clairvoyantly what they were, and peered into their soul. I saw a desecrated zombie masquerading as an Aryan, a filth-filled soul that has been eternally perverted by the Jew. Nothing will ever be brought back from them and they are an eternal blight to anything around them.
All of it must go, Chechar. We need to kill them all, and ensure with the most painful, powerful and memorable methods that this is never going to happen again.
Hail Ares, the Lord of Struggle!
Excerpted from “When the Music Stops: How America’s Cities May Explode on Violence” by Matt Bracken:
In response to recent articles in mainstream military journals discussing the use of the U.S. Army to quell insurrections on American soil, I offer an alternate vision of the future. Instead of a small town in the South as the flash point, picture instead a score of U.S. cities in the thrall of riots greater than those experienced in Los Angeles in 1965 (Watts), multiple cities in 1968 (MLK assassination), and Los Angeles again in 1992 (Rodney King). New Yorkers can imagine the 1977 blackout looting or the 1991 Crown Heights disturbance. In fact, the proximate spark of the next round of major riots in America could be any from a long list cribbed from our history.
We have seen them all before, and we shall see them all again as history rhymes along regardless of the century or the generation of humankind nominally in control of events. But the next time we are visited by widespread, large-scale urban riots, a dangerous new escalation may be triggered by a fresh vulnerability: It’s estimated that the average American home has less than two weeks of food on hand. In poor minority areas, it may be much less. What if a cascading economic crisis, even a temporary one, leads to millions of EBT (electronic benefit transfer) cards flashing nothing but ERROR. Alternatively, the government might pump endless digits into the cards in a hopeless attempt to outpace future hyperinflation. The government can order the supermarkets to honor the cards, and it can even set price controls, but history’s verdict is clear: If suppliers are paid only with worthless scrip or blinking digits, the food will stop.
Step one: flash mob looting
In my scenario, the initial riots begin spontaneously across affected urban areas, as SNAP (supplemental nutrition assistance program) and other government welfare recipients learn that their EBT cards no longer function. This sudden revelation will cause widespread anger, which will quickly lead to the flash-mob looting of local supermarkets and other businesses. The media will initially portray these “food riots” as at least partly justifiable. Sadly, millions of Americans have been made largely, or even entirely, dependent on government wealth transfer payments to put food on their tables.
A new social contract has been created, where bread and circuses buy a measure of peace in our minority-populated urban zones. In the era of ubiquitous big-screen cable television, the internet and smart phones, the circus part of the equation is never in doubt as long as the electricity flows. But the bread is highly problematic. Food must be delivered the old-fashioned way: physically. Any disruption in the normal functioning of the EBT system will lead to food riots with a speed that is astonishing. This will inevitably happen when our unsustainable, debt-fueled binge party finally stops, and the music is over. Now that the delivery of free or heavily subsidized food is perceived by tens of millions of Americans to be a basic human right, the cutoff of “their” food money will cause an immediate explosion of rage. When the hunger begins to bite, supermarkets, shops and restaurants will be looted, and initially the media will not condemn the looting. Unfortunately, this initial violence will only be the start of a dangerous escalation.
The ransacked supermarkets, convenience stores, ATMs and gas stations will not be restocked during this period due to the precarious security situation. A single truck loaded with food or gasoline would be perceived to be a Fort Knox on wheels and subject to immediate attack unless heavily protected by powerfully armed security forces, but such forces will not be available during this chaotic period. Under those conditions, resupply to the urban areas cannot and will not take place. The downward spiral of social and economic dysfunction will therefore both accelerate and spread from city to city. These delays, in turn, will lead to more riots with the constant underlying demand that hungry people be fed, one way or another.
Catch-22, anyone? When these demands do not bring the desired outcome, the participants will ratchet up the violence, hoping to force action by the feckless state and national governments.
The “food riots” will be a grass-roots movement of the moment born out of hunger and desperation. It will not be dependent upon leaders or an underlying organization, although they could certainly add to the sauce. Existing cell phone technology provides all the organization a flash mob needs. Most of the mobs will consist of minority urban youths, termed MUYs in the rest of this essay. Which minority doesn’t matter; each urban locale will come with its own unique multi-ethnic dynamic.
Some locales will divide upon religious or political lines, but they will not be the dominant factors contributing to conflict. In the American context, the divisions will primarily have an ethnic or racial context, largely because that makes it easy to sort out the sides at a safe distance. No need to check religious or political affiliation at a hundred yards when The Other is of a different color.
Next step: flash mob riots
In order to highlight their grievances and escalate their demands for an immediate resumption of government benefits, the MUY flash mobs will next move their activities to the borders of their ethnic enclaves. They will concentrate on major intersections and highway interchanges where non-MUY suburban commuters must make daily passage to and from what forms of employment still exist. People making a living will still be using those roads to get to where they earn their daily bread.
The results of these clashes will frequently resemble the intersection of Florence and Normandie during the Rodney King riots in 1992, where Reginald Denny was pulled out of his truck’s cab and beaten nearly to death with a cinder block. If you don’t remember it, watch it on YouTube. Then imagine that scene with the mob-making accelerant of texting and other social media technology added to stoke the fires. Instead of a few dozen thugs terrorizing the ambushed intersections, in minutes there will be hundreds.
Rioters will throw debris such as shopping carts and trash cans into the intersection, causing the more timid drivers to pause. The mobs will swarm the lines of trapped cars once they have stopped. Traffic will be forced into gridlock for blocks in all directions. Drivers and passengers of the wrong ethnic persuasions will be pulled from their vehicles to be beaten, robbed, and in some cases raped and/or killed. It will be hyper-violent and overtly racial mob behavior, on a massive and undeniable basis.
Some of those trapped in their cars will try to drive out of the area, inevitably knocking down MUY pedestrians and being trapped by even more outraged MUYs. The commuters will be dragged out of their cars and kicked or beaten to death. Other suburban commuters will try to shoot their way out of the lines of stopped cars, and they will meet the same grim fate once they run out of bullets and room to escape.
The mob will be armed with everything from knives, clubs and pistols to AK-47s. A bloodbath will result. These unlucky drivers and their passengers will suffer horribly, and some of their deaths will be captured on traffic web cameras. Later, these terrible scenes will be released or leaked by sympathetic government insiders and shown by the alternative media, which continue to expand as the traditional media become increasingly irrelevant.
Implausible, you insist?
This grim tableau is my analysis of age-old human behavior patterns, adding flash mobs and 2012 levels of racial anger to the old recipe. Early-teenage MUYs today are frequently playing “The Knockout Game” on full bellies, just for kicks, and proudly uploading the videos. They and their older peers can be expected to do far worse when hunger and the fear of starvation enter their physical, mental, and emotional equations. The blame for their hunger will be turned outward against the greater society, and will be vented at first hand against any non-MUY who falls into their grasp while they are in the thrall of mob hysteria. These episodes of mass psychology we will refer to as “flash mob riots”, “wilding”, or some other new name.
The official police response to flash mob riots
To gear up for even a single “Florence and Normandie on steroids” flash mob street riot, city police departments will require an hour or longer to stage their SWAT teams and riot squads in position to react. Ordinary patrol cars in small numbers will not venture anywhere near such roiling masses of hysterical rioters, not even to perform rescues. Those citizens trapped in their cars cannot expect timely assistance from local or state authorities.
Even in the first days of widespread riots, when the police forces are well rested, it might take several hours to mount a response sufficient to quell the disturbance and restore order to even one major street intersection riot. In the meantime, scores of innocent commuters will have been attacked, with many of them injured or killed and left at the scene. It will be a law enforcement nightmare to quell the disturbance, mop up lingering rioters, restore security, and bring medical attention to the living and get medical examiners to the dead. And each jurisdiction will face potentially dozens of such scenes, thanks to the ability for MUYs to cross-communicate at will using their wireless devices.
The far more difficult challenge for the police is that by the time they are suited in riot gear, armed and geared up to sweep the intersection, it will probably be empty of rioters. The police, with their major riot squad reaction times measured in hours, will be fighting flash mobs that materialize, cause mayhem, and evaporate in only fractions of hours. This rapid cycle time is a clear lesson taken from massive riots by immigrant French Muslim MUYs in their own religious enclaves and bordering areas.
The American flash mob riot will exist almost entirely inside the law enforcement OODA (observe, orient, decide, act) loop. In other words, the rioters will have a much quicker reaction time than the police. Until fairly recently, superior police communications meant that they could use their radio networks as a force multiplier. With their networking advantage and cohesive reactions both within a department and among cooperating local agencies, police could act as shepherds guiding or dispersing a wayward stampeding flock.
Today, the mob has the greater advantage, immediately spreading word of every police preparation by text and Tweet, even in advance of the police movement. Attempts by the authorities to stop the flash mobs by blocking and jamming wireless transmissions will have limited success.
It is at this point that the situation spirals out of control.
The enraged mobs in urban America will soon recognize that their spontaneous street riots cannot be stopped by the police, and then they will grow truly fearsome. For the police, it will be a losing game of Whack-a-Mole, with riots breaking out and dispersing at a speed they cannot hope to match. The violence will spread to previously unaffected cities as an awareness of law enforcement impotence is spread by television and social media. After a few days, the police forces will be exhausted and demoralized. As the violence intensifies and spreads, and in the absence of any viable security arrangements, supermarkets and other stores will not be restocked, leaving the MUYs even more desperate and angry than before. The increasing desperation born of worsening hunger will refuel the escalating spiral of violence.
Nor will violent conflict be only between the inhabitants of the urban areas and the suburbs. The international record of conflict in tri-ethnic cities is grim, making the old bi-racial dichotomy formerly seen in America seem stable by comparison. In tri-ethnic cities the perceived balance of power is constantly shifting, with each side in turn feeling outnumbered and outmuscled. Temporary truces, betrayals and new alliances follow in rapid succession, removing any lingering sense of social cohesion.
The former Yugoslavia, with its Catholic, Orthodox and Muslim divisions, comes starkly to mind. The Lebanese Civil War between the Christians, Sunnis, Shiites and Druze raged across Beirut (at one time known as “The Paris of the Middle East”) for fifteen brutal years. Once a city turns on itself and becomes a runaway engine of self-destruction, it can be difficult to impossible to switch off the process and return to normal pre-conflict life. It’s not inconceivable that the United States could produce a dozen Sarajevos or Beiruts, primarily across racial instead of religious divides.
Vehicle traffic by non-minority suburban commuters through adjoining minority areas will virtually halt, wrecking what is left of the local economy. Businesses will not open because employees will not be able to travel to work safely. Businesses in minority areas, needless to say, will be looted. “Gentrified” enclaves of affluent suburbanites within or near the urban zones will suffer repeated attacks, until their inhabitants flee.
Radically disaffected minorities will hold critical infrastructure corridors through their areas hostage against the greater society. Highways, railroad tracks, pipe and power lines will all be under constant threat, or may be cut in planned or unplanned acts of raging against “the system.” As long as security in the urban areas cannot be restored, these corridors will be under threat. Even airports will not be immune. Many of them have been absorbed into urban areas, and aircraft will come under sporadic fire while taking off and landing.
In the absence of fresh targets of value blundering into their areas, and still out of food, MUYs will begin to forage beyond their desolated home neighborhoods and into suburban borderlands. “Safe” supermarkets and other stores will be robbed in brazen commando-like gang attacks. Carjackings and home invasions will proliferate madly. As I have discussed in my essay “The Civil War Two Cube,” so-called “transitional” and mixed-ethnic areas will suffer the worst violence. These neighborhoods will become utterly chaotic killing zones, with little or no help coming from the overstretched police, who will be trying to rest up for their next shift on riot squad duty, if they have not already deserted their posts to take care of their own families.
The suburban armed vigilante response
In the absence of an effective official police response to the exploding levels of violence, suburbanites will first hastily form self-defense forces to guard their neighborhoods—especially ones located near ethnic borders. These ubiquitous neighborhood armed defense teams will often have a deep and talented bench from which to select members, and they will not lack for volunteers.
Since 9-11, hundreds of thousands of young men (and more than a few women) have acquired graduate-level educations in various aspects of urban warfare. In the Middle East these troops were frequently tasked with restoring order to urban areas exploding in internecine strife. Today these former military men and women understand better than anyone the life-or-death difference between being armed and organized versus unarmed and disorganized.
Let’s return to our hypothetical Florence and Normandie intersection, but this time with hundreds of rioters per city block, instead of mere dozens.
Among the mobs are thugs armed with pistols and perhaps even AK-47s equipped with standard iron sights, and except in rare cases, these rifles have never been “zeroed in” on a target range. In other words, past a medium distance of fifty to a hundred yards, these MUY shooters will have little idea where their fired bullets will strike—nor will they care. Typically, most of the rioters armed with a pistol, shotgun or an iron-sighted rifle could not hit a mailbox at a hundred yards unless by luck. Inside that distance, any non-MUY could be at immediate risk of brutal death at the hands of an enraged mob, but beyond that range, the mob will pose much less danger.
Taking this imbalance in effective ranges of the firearms most likely to be available to both sides, certain tactical responses are sure to arise, and ranking near the top will be the one described next.
A sample sniper ambush scenario
Lying prone and using their bipods for support, the shooters have five to ten degrees of pan or traverse across the entire intersection. Individual rioters are clearly visible in the shooters’ magnified optical scopes. Each of the four snipers has a plan to shoot from the outside of the mob toward the middle, driving participants into a panicked mass. The left-side shooters start on the left side and work to the middle, engaging targets with rapid fire, about one aimed shot per two seconds.
The result is a turkey shoot. One magazine of thirty aimed shots per rifle is expended in under a minute, a coded cease-fire is called on the walkie-talkies, and the trucks drive away at the speed limit.
Back at the intersection, complete panic breaks out among the rioters as a great number of bullets have landed in human flesh. Over a score have been killed outright, and many more scream in pain for medical attention they will not receive in time. The sniper ambush stops the flash mob cold in its tracks as the uninjured flee in terror, leaving their erstwhile comrades back on the ground bleeding. The commuters trapped in their vehicles may have an opportunity to escape.
This type of sniper ambush and a hundred variations on the theme will finally accomplish what the police could not: put an end to mobs of violent rioters making the cities through-streets and highways impassible killing zones. Would-be rioters will soon understand it to be suicidal to cluster in easily visible groups and engage in mob violence, as the immediate response could come at any time in the form of aimed fire from hundreds of yards away. Even one rifleman with a scoped semi-auto can break up a medium-sized riot.
The government response to vigilantism
Where they will be unable to respond swiftly or effectively to the outbreaks of street riots by MUY flash mobs, the police and federal agents will respond vigorously to the deadly but smaller vigilante attacks. These sniper ambushes and other SAV attacks will be called acts of domestic terrorism and mass murder by government officials and the mainstream media. A nearly seamless web of urban and suburban street cameras will reveal some of the SAV teams by their vehicles, facial recognition programs, and other technical means. Some early arrests will be made, but the vigilantes will adapt to increasing law enforcement pressure against them by becoming cleverer about their camouflage, most often using stolen cars and false uniforms and masks during their direct-action missions. Observe Mexico today for ideas on how this type of dirty war is fought.
Eventually, the U.S. Army itself might be called upon to put out all the social firestorms in our cities, restore order and security, pacify the angry masses, feed the starving millions, get vital infrastructure operating again, and do it all at once in a dozen American Beiruts, Sarajevos and Mogadishus.
Good luck to them, I say.
A few hundred “Active IRA” tied down thousands of British troops in one corner of a small island for decades. The same ratios have served the Taliban well over the past decade while fighting against the combined might of NATO. Set aside for a moment the angry starving millions trapped in the urban areas, and the dire security issues arising thereof. Just to consider the official reaction to vigilantism separately, it’s unlikely that any conceivable combinations of local and state police, federal law enforcement, National Guard or active-duty Army actions could neutralize or eliminate tens of thousands of former special operations troops intent on providing their own form of security. Millions of Americans are already far better armed and trained than a few hundred IRA or Taliban ever were. And the police and Army would not be operating from secure fire bases, their families living in total safety thousands of miles away in a secure rear area. In this scenario, there is no rear area, and every family member, anywhere, would be at perpetual risk of reprisal actions by any of the warring sides.
In this hyper-dangerous environment, new laws forbidding the carrying of firearms in vehicles would be ignored as the illegitimate diktat of dictatorship, just when the Second Amendment is needed more than ever. Police or military conducting searches for firearms at checkpoints would themselves become targets of vigilante snipers. Serving on anti-firearms duty would be seen as nothing but pure treason by millions of Americans who took the oath to defend the Constitution, including the Bill of Rights. Politicians who did not act in the security interest of their local constituents as a result of political correctness or other reasons would also be targeted.
A festering race war with police and the military in the middle taking fire from both sides could last for many years, turning many American cities into a living hell. Remember history: when the British Army landed in Northern Ireland in 1969, they were greeted with flowers and applause from the Catholics. The Tommys were welcomed as peacekeepers who would protect them from Protestant violence. That soon changed. Likewise with ourtragic misadventure in Lebanon back in 1982 and 1983. Well-intended referees often find themselves taking fire from all sides. It’s as predictable as tomorrow’s sunrise. Why would it be any different when the U.S. Army is sent to Los Angeles, Chicago or Philadelphia to break apart warring ethnic factions?
For a long time after these events, it will be impossible for the warring ethnic groups to live together or even to mingle peacefully. Too much rage and hatred will have been built up on all sides of our many American multi-ethnic fault lines. The new wounds will be raw and painful for many years to come, as they were in the South for long after the Civil War. The fracturing of the urban areas, divided by no-man’s-lands, will also hinder economic redevelopment for many years because the critical infrastructure corridors will remain insecure.
Eventually, high concrete “Peace Walls” like those in Belfast, Northern Ireland, will be installed where the different ethnic groups live in close proximity. That is, if recovery to sane and civilized norms of behavior are ever regained in our lifetimes and we don’t slide into a new Dark Age, a stern and permanent tyranny, warlordism, anarchy, or any other dire outcome.
It is a frightening thing to crystallize the possible outbreak of mass starvation and racial warfare into words, so that the mind is forced to confront agonizingly painful scenarios. It is much easier to avert one’s eyes and mind from the ugliness with politically correct Kumbaya bromides. In this grim essay, I am describing a brutal situation of ethnic civil war not differing much from the worst scenes from recent history in Rwanda, South Africa, Mexico, Bosnia, Iraq, and many other places that have experienced varying types and degrees of societal collapse.
Most of us wish we could turn back the calendar to Norman Rockwell’s America. But we cannot, for that America is water long over the dam and gone from our sight, if not from our memories. John Adams said, “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” If that is true, judging by current and even accelerating cultural shifts, we might already have passed the point of no return.
Author’s Note: This essay and last week’s “What I Saw At The Coup” were both written in response to the article published on July 25, 2012 in the semi-official Small Wars Journal titled “Full Spectrum Operations in the Homeland: A Vision of the Future.”
My twin essays represent starkly different “visions of the future” that would-be tyrants, their hopeful henchmen and other self-deluded nimrods may want to consider, before ordering the U.S. military or federal agencies to suppress Americans.
The following is my abridgement of chapter 15 of William Pierce’s history of the white race, Who We Are:
German Growth, Roman Imperialism Led to Conflict
[Tacitus on Germanic peoples]
The first wave of Battle-Axe People to leave the ancient Nordic heartland in the forests and steppes of southern Russia appeared in the Germanic area of northern Europe even before the Neolithic Revolution had become well established there, prior to 4,000 B.C.
It would be incorrect, of course, to refer to these earliest Nordic immigrants as “Germans.” All that can be said of them, just as of those immigrants south of them who later gave birth to the Celts, is that they were Indo-Europeans. The process of cultural-ethnic differentiation had not resulted in the fairly clear-cut distinctions which allowed one group of people to be identified as Germans, another as Celts, and a third as Balts until approximately the first half of the first millennium B.C.
By about 2,000 B.C., however, the ancestors of the Germans—call them proto-Germans—were at home in southern Sweden, the Danish peninsula, and the adjacent lands between the Elbe and the Oder. To the east were the proto-Balts, to the west and south the proto-Celts.
From this tiny proto-German homeland, about the size of the state of Tennessee, the Germans expanded their dominion during the ensuing 3,000 years over all of Europe, from Iceland to the Urals, ruling over Celts, Balts, Slavs, Latins, and Greeks, as well as the non-Indo-European peoples of the Roman Empire. After that it was Germanic peoples, primarily, who discovered, settled, and conquered North America and who, until the internal decay of the last few decades, wielded effective political power even over the non-White hordes of Asia and Africa.
German expansion. Seventeen centuries before the Teutonic Order conquered the Baltic lands, German expansion eastward along the southern shore of the Baltic Sea had extended German settlement and rule from the Oder to the Vistula. At the same time, expansion was also taking place toward the west and the south, bringing about mingling—and often conflict—between Germans and Celts. With the Roman conquest of Gaul in the first century B.C., direct conflict between the expanding Germans and still mighty and expanding Rome became inevitable.
Actually the death struggle between Latins and Germans began even before Caesar’s subjection of Gaul. Late in the second century two neighboring German tribes, the Cimbrians and the Teutons, left their homes in the Danish peninsula because, they said, of the sinking of much of their low-lying land into the sea. Some 300,000 in number, they headed south, crossing the Tyrolese Alps into northern Italy in 113 B.C., where they asked the Romans for permission either to settle or to cross Roman territory into the Celtic lands to the west.
The Roman consul, Papirius Carbo, attempted to halt them, and they defeated his army. The Germans then proceeded westward into Gaul and went as far as Spain, where they raised havoc. Ten years later, however, they returned to northern Italy.
This time they were met by a more competent Roman general, the consul Gaius Marius. In two horrendous battles, in 102 and 101 B.C., Marius virtually exterminated the Teutons and the Cimbrians. So many Teutons were massacred at Aquae Sextiae in 102 that, according to a contemporary Roman historian, their blood so fertilized the earth that the orchards there were especially fruitful for years afterward, and German bones were used to build fences around the vineyards.
At Vercelli the Cimbrians met a similar fate the following year; more than 100,000 were slaughtered. When the German women saw their men being defeated, they first slew their children and then killed themselves in order to avoid the shame of slavery.
The annihilation of these two German nations was followed by a few decades in which Italy remained relatively safe from further incursions from the north. The Germans’ territory was bounded, roughly, on the east by the Vistula and on the south by the Danube. In the west the boundary was less definite, and the Germans west of the Rhine came into repeated conflict with Roman armies in Gaul.
Tacitus on the Germans. The Romans were naturally curious about the teeming tribes of fierce, warlike people beyond the Rhine who dared contest their conquest of the lands in northern Gaul, and several Roman writers enumerated them and described their way of life, most notably the historian Gaius Cornelius Tacitus. Writing in a first-century Rome which was thoroughly mongrelized, Tacitus was strongly impressed by the Germans’ apparent racial homogeneity:
I concur in opinion with those who deem the Germans never to have intermarried with other nations but to be a pure and unmixed race, stamped with a distinct character. Hence, a family likeness pervades the whole, though their numbers are so great. Their eyes are stern and blue, their hair ruddy, and their bodies large, powerful in sudden exertion, but impatient of toil and not at all capable of sustaining thirst and heat. They are accustomed by their climate to endure cold and hunger.
When the Germans fight, wrote Tacitus, perhaps remembering the example of the Teutons and Cimbrians, “they have within hearing the yells of their women and the cries of their children.”
Tradition relates that armies beginning to give way have been rallied by the females, through the earnestness of their supplications, the interposition of their bodies, and the pictures they have drawn of impending slavery, a calamity which these people bear with more impatience for their women than themselves.
If these appeals were not sufficient to elicit honorable behavior from each and every German, Tacitus added, their fellow tribesmen dealt with them severely: “Traitors and deserters are hanged; cowards and those guilty of unnatural practices are suffocated in mud under a hurdle.” Subject to the same punishment as cowards and homosexuals were draft dodgers: those who failed to present themselves for military service when summoned.
The education of the German youth stressed not only bravery and skill in arms, but loyalty in the highest degree. Tacitus gives an interesting description of the mutual obligations between a German leader and his companions in arms:
The Germans transact no business, public or private, without being armed, but it is not customary for any person to assume arms until the state has approved his ability to use them. Then, in the midst of the assembly, either one of the chiefs, or the father, or a relative, equips the youth with a shield and a spear. These are to them the manly gown (toga virilis); this is the first honor conferred on youth. Before, they are considered as part of a household; afterwards, of the state.
There is a great emulation among the companions as to which shall possess the highest place in the favor of their chief, and among the chiefs as to which shall excel in the number and valor of this companions. It is their dignity and their strength always to be surrounded by a large body of select youth: an ornament in peace, a bulwark in war.
Thus, already in Tacitus’ time, was the foundation in existence upon which the medieval institutions of chivalry and feudalism would rest.
The philosopher Lucius Annaeus Seneca, also writing in the first century, shared Tacitus’ respect for the Germans’ martial qualities: “Who are braver than the Germans? Who more impetuous in the charge? Who fonder of arms, in the use of which they are born and nourished, which are their only care?”
Caesar, Tacitus, and other writers also described other attributes of the Germans and various aspects of their lives: their shrines, like those of the Celts and the Balts, were in sacred groves, open to the sky; their family life (in Roman eyes) was remarkably virtuous, although the German predilection for strong drink and games of chance must have been sorely trying to wives; they were extraordinarily hospitable to strangers and fiercely resentful of any infringements on their own rights and freedoms; each man jealously guarded his honor, and a liar was held in worse repute than a murderer; usury and prostitution were unknown among them.
The following is my abridgement of chapter 16 of William Pierce’s history of the white race, Who We Are:
Death Struggle Between Germany and Rome
Decided Fate of White Race
Hermann Was Savior of Europe & White Race
Julius Caesar’s conquest of all the Celts and Germans west of the Rhine and his punitive raids into the German lands on the other side of the river bought time for the Romans to concentrate their military efforts against the still independent Celts inhabiting the Swiss and Austrian Alps and the lowlands between the Alps and the Danube, from Lake Constance to Vienna. More than three decades of intermittent warfare by Caesar and his successors finally subdued these Celts, and their lands became the Roman provinces of Rhaetia, Noricum, and Pannonia.
Germania Magna. By 15 B.C. the Danube had been established as the dividing line between the Roman Empire and the free German lands to the north—or Germania Magna, as the Romans named this territory bounded on the west, the south, and the east by the Rhine, the Danube, and the Vistula, respectively. The conquered German lands west of the Rhine, in Alsace, Luxembourg, Belgium, and the southern Netherlands, were divided into the Roman provinces of Upper and Lower Germany.
In 12 B.C. Emperor Augustus sent his stepson Drusus, who had played a major role in the subjection of the Celts, to the mouth of the Rhine to launch an invasion of Germania Magna. Although initially unsuccessful, Drusus led repeated campaigns against the Germans, and by 9 B.C. had defeated several tribes, most notably the Chatti, and pushed more than 200 miles into Germania Magna, reaching the Elbe.
Tribal Names. At this point an aside on the names of the German tribes may be helpful; otherwise we may easily become confused by the proliferation of often-conflicting designations given to the various tribes and groupings of tribes by the Romans, the Germans, and others. Because the ancient Germans were, for most practical purposes, illiterate (the Germans’ runes were used for inscriptions but not for writing books), the earliest German tribal names we have are those recorded by the Romans: Batavi, Belgae, Chatti, Chauci, Cherusci, Cimbri, Eburones, Frisii, Gothones, Hermunduri, Langobardi, Marcomanni, Saxones, Suevi, Teutones, etc. It is assumed that in most cases these were reasonable approximations to the actual German names.
In some cases these tribal names assigned by the Romans of Caesar’s time have survived in the names of modern nations or provinces: Belgium, Saxony, Lombardy, Gotland, and so on. More often they have not; the great stirring up of the nations of Europe between the latter part of the second century and the middle of the sixth century A.D.—the Voelkerwanderung, or wandering of the peoples—profoundly changed the German tribal groupings. Some tribes vanished without a trace; others reappeared as elements in new tribal configurations which combined many of the older tribes.
Thus, the Saxons of the eighth century consisted not only of the Saxones known to the Romans, but of many other tribal elements as well. The Franks likewise arose after Caesar’s time as a confederation of many German tribes.
The Romans referred to all the German tribes collectively as Germani, but this was apparently originally the name of only a single minor tribe, which later lost its independent existence. In similar manner the Romanized Franks of a later day referred to all their German neighbors by the name of a single tribal grouping which arose during the Voelkerwanderung, the Alamanni; the French name for any German is still allemand.
Conquests. Over the next dozen years the Roman military machine continued to consolidate and expand its conquests in Germania Magna. Most of the independent tribes left were those east of the Elbe. Some, like the Marcomanni, had been forced to leave their ancestral lands in the west and resettle east of the Elbe in order to avoid defeat by the Romans. The Germans were on the defensive everywhere, and they seemed well on the way to suffering the collective fate of the Celts.
They were finally beginning to learn one vital lesson, however: they must either unite in the face of the common enemy or become extinct; the independence of the various tribes was a luxury they could no longer afford. A king of the Marcomanni, Marbod, succeeded in uniting most of the tribes east of the Elbe and organizing a standing draft army of 70,000 infantry and 4,000 cavalry from among them, the first time the Germans had accomplished such a feat.
The imperial representative in the conquered German lands was Publius Quintilius Varus, who was more a lawyer and a politician than a general. As an administrator he was brutal, arbitrary, and rapacious. Overturning all local customs, contemptuous of German tradition and sensibility, Varus applied the same measures against the tribes of Germania Magna which he had used earlier while he was proconsul in the Middle East and which Caesar had employed successfully to break the spirit of the Celts in Gaul. He succeeded instead in transforming the respect Germans had learned for Roman power into a bitter and implacable hatred.
The 19th-century English historian Edward Creasy describes especially well the German reaction to Varus and his army:
Accustomed to govern the depraved and debased natives of Syria, a country where courage in man and virtue in woman had for centuries been unknown, Varus thought that he might gratify his licentious and rapacious passions with equal impunity among the high-minded sons and pure-spirited daughters of Germany. When the general of any army sets the example of outrages of this description, he is soon faithfully imitated by his officers and surpassed by his still more brutal soldiery. The Romans now habitually indulged in those violations of the sanctity of the domestic shrine and those insults upon honor and modesty by which far less gallant spirits than those of our Teutonic ancestors have often been maddened into insurrection.
Hermann the Cheruscer. As the latter-day Romans were shortly to learn, the Germans dared a great deal. There came to the fore among the wretched, conquered tribes a German leader cast in the mold of the Celt Vercingetorix. Unlike the case with the latter, however, this new leader’s daring brought success. He was Hermann, son of Segimar, king of the Cherusci. The Romans called him Arminius. In Creasy’s words:
It was part of the subtle policy of Rome to confer rank and privileges on the youth of the leading families in the nations which she wished to enslave. Among other young German chieftains Arminius and his brother, who were the heads of the noblest house in the tribe of the Cherusci, had been selected as fit objects for the exercise of this insidious system. Roman refinements and dignities succeeded in denationalizing the brother, who assumed the Roman name of Flavius and adhered to Rome throughout all her wars against his country. Arminius remained unbought by honors or wealth, uncorrupted by refinement or luxury. He aspired to and obtained from Roman enmity a higher title than ever could have been given him by Roman favor.
Shortly before 1 A.D. Hermann went to Rome to learn the Roman ways and language. He was 17 or 18 years old. He served five years in a Roman legion and became a Roman citizen, a member of the equites, or knightly class. He was sent by Augustus to aid in the suppression of the rebellion in Pannonia and Dalmatia.
What Hermann learned about the Romans redoubled his hatred of them. Again, Creasy’s words on the subject can hardly be bettered:
Vast, however, and admirably organized as the fabric of Roman power appeared on the frontiers and in the provinces, there was rottenness at the core. In Rome’s unceasing hostilities with foreign foes and still more in her long series of desolating civil wars, the free middle classes of Italy had almost wholly disappeared. Above the position which they had occupied an oligarchy of wealth had reared itself; beneath that position a degraded mass of poverty and misery was fermenting. Slaves, the chance sweepings of every conquered country, shoals of Africans, Sardinians, Asiatics, Illyrians, and others, made up the bulk of the population of the Italian peninsula. The foulest profligacy of manners was general in all ranks….
With bitter indignation must the German chieftain have beheld all this and contrasted it with the rough worth of his own countrymen: their bravery, their fidelity to their word, their manly independence of spirit, their love of their national free institutions, and their loathing of every pollution and meanness. Above all he must have thought of the domestic virtues which hallowed a German home; of the respect there shown to the female character and of the pure affection by which that respect was repaid. His soul must have burned within him at the contemplation of such a race yielding to these debased Italians.
When he returned to his people at the age of 25, Hermann was given a Roman command under Varus. He immediately set to work organizing a revolution. The most difficult obstacle he had to overcome was neither the Germans’ lack of military stores or even a single walled fortress, nor their traditional disunity; it was the opposition from the conservative faction among his own people.
As is always so with conservatives, they preferred immediate prosperity under Roman rule, through the trade opportunities it offered or through advantages bestowed on individual leaders by the Romans, to freedom, honor, and the long-range preservation and promotion of their own stock. One of the most hostile of these Romanized conservatives was Hermann’s own father-in-law. Nevertheless, Hermann prevailed over the conservative opposition and won most of the leaders of the Cherusci and the neighboring tribes to his conspiracy.
In the summer of 9 A.D. Varus’ army, consisting of five legions, was encamped among the Saxons, west of the Weser in the modern state of North Rhine-Westphalia. Late in the month of September Hermann contrived to have a localized rebellion break out among some tribes to the east, and messengers soon arrived at Varus’ camp with news of the insurrection. Varus immediately set out with three of his legions to crush the revolt, giving Hermann the task of gathering up the Romans’ German auxiliary forces and following him.
Hermann sprang his carefully planned trap. Instead of gathering an auxiliary force to support Varus, he sent his agents speeding the revolutionary call to the tribes, far and near.
Hermann then set out in pursuit of Varus, catching up with him amid the wild ravines, steep ridges, and tangled undergrowth of the Teutoburger Forest, about 20 miles west of the Weser, near the present town of Detmold. The progress of the Roman army had been severely hampered by the heavy autumn rains and the marshy condition of the ground, and Hermann fell on Varus’ legions with a suddenness and fury which sent the Romans reeling.
For nearly three days the battle raged with a ferocity which exacted a heavy toll from both sides. The Germans employed guerrilla tactics, suddenly attacking the floundering Roman columns from an unexpected quarter and then withdrawing into the dense forest before the Romans could group themselves into effective fighting formation, only to attack again from a different quarter.
On the third day of battle the exhausted remnants of Varus’ army panicked and broke, and the Germans annihilated them. Once more, we will let Creasy tell the story:
The Roman officer who commanded the cavalry, Numonius Vala, rode off with his squadrons in the vain hope of escaping by thus abandoning his comrades. Unable to keep together or force their way across the woods and swamps, the horsemen were overpowered in detail and slaughtered to the last man…. Varus, after being severely wounded in a charge of the Germans against his part of the column, committed suicide to avoid falling into the hands of those whom he had exasperated by his oppressions. One of the lieutenant generals of the army fell fighting; the other surrendered to the enemy. But mercy to a fallen foe had never been a Roman virtue, and those among her legions who now laid down their arms in hope of quarter drank deep of the cup of suffering, which Rome had held to the lips of many a brave but unfortunate enemy. The infuriated Germans slaughtered their oppressors with deliberate ferocity, and those prisoners who were not hewn to pieces on the spot were only preserved to perish by a more cruel death in cold blood.
Only a tiny handful of Romans escaped from the Teutoburger Forest to carry the news of the catastrophe back to the Roman forts on the other side of the Rhine. Varus’ legions had been the pick of Rome’s army, and their destruction broke the back of the Roman imperium east of the Rhine.
A furious German populace rose up and exacted a grisly vengeance on Roman judges, Jewish speculators and slave dealers, and the civil servants Augustus had sent to administer the conquered territories. The two Roman legions remaining in Germania Magna were able to extricate themselves to Gaul only after hard fighting and severe losses.
The tidings struck Rome like a thunderclap of doom. The aged Augustus felt his throne tremble. He never fully recovered from the shock, and for months afterward he let his hair and beard grow, and was seen by his courtiers from time to time pounding his head in despair against the palace wall and crying out, “Oh, Varus, Varus, give me back my legions!”
Hermann’s great victory by no means ended the Roman threat to the Germans east of the Rhine, and many more battles were to be fought before Rome finally accepted, in 17 A.D., the Rhine and the Danube as a boundary between Roman and German territory. Clearly, though, that September day in 9 A.D. is a watershed of world history; the battle of the Teutoburger Forest is one of the half-dozen most decisive events in the history of the White race. Had Hermann lost that day to Varus, or had the conservatives among the Germans succeeded in aborting or betraying his revolution, the heart of Germany would have been Romanized. The land of the Angles and the Saxons and the Goths would have been permanently open, as was Rome, to the filth of the Levant: to Oriental customs and religion; to the mercantile spirit which places monetary gain above all else in life; to the swart, curly-haired men who swarmed in the marketplaces of the Mediterranean world, haggling over the interest on a loan or the price of a blond slave girl.
The Nordic spirit, the Faustian spirit, which is the unique possession of that race which burst into Europe from the eastern steppes more than 6,000 years ago; the spirit which carried Greece to the heights and impelled the earliest Romans to impose a new order on the Italian peninsula; the spirit which had eventually succumbed to racial decay in the south and which had been crushed out of the Celts of Gaul and Britain—that spirit would also have been crushed out of the Germans and replaced by the spirit of the lawyers and the moneychangers.
The fact that that spirit survived in the Germans, that it thrived again in Britain after the Saxon conquest, that it lived in the Vikings who sailed their dragon ships across the Atlantic to the New World five centuries after that, that after another ten centuries it carried our race beyond the bounds of this planet—is due in very large measure to the passion, energy, skill, and courage of Hermann the Cheruscer.
Four hundred years were yet to pass and a great deal more German blood shed before the German ascendancy over Rome became final and irreversible, but the events of 9 A.D. presaged everything which followed. After Hermann’s mighty feat the decaying Roman Empire was almost continuously on the defensive rather than the offensive. Although the southwestern corner of Germania Magna, encompassing the headwaters of the Rhine and the Danube (the area which had been abandoned by the Marcomanni prior to the Hermannschlacht), was later colonized by Rome; and although Emperor Trajan added the trans-Danubian province of Dacia to Rome’s possessions at the beginning of the second century, no really serious program of conquest of German lands was again attempted.
The German unity which Hermann forged did not last long, unfortunately. Although he outmaneuvered his rival Marbod, who was forced to seek Roman protection, Hermann himself lost his life to an assassin a few years later. Traditional intertribal rivalries and jealousies came to the fore again. Just as Roman decadence prevented the Romans from conquering the Germans in the ensuing decades, so did German disunity prevent the reverse.
The following is my abridgement of chapter 17 of William Pierce’s history of the white race, Who We Are:
The Gothic nation, as was mentioned in the previous installment, had established itself on the southern shore of the Baltic, around the mouth of the Vistula, before 300 B.C. Prior to that the Goths had lived in southern Sweden.
Like the other Germans of their time, the Goths were tall, sturdily built, and Nordic in coloration, with blue or grey eyes and hair colors ranging from red to almost white. Roman reports describe them as the tallest of the Germans, with especially large hands and feet—perhaps a trait resulting from the local mixture of Indo-European and Cro-Magnon races in Sweden.
Soon they were also the richest of the Germans. In direct contact with the amber-gathering Baltic tribes to the east, the Goths monopolized the amber trade. For centuries Gothic caravans loaded with furs and amber pushed southward to sell their goods in the trading centers of the Roman Empire.
Gothic Migration. Then, in the third quarter of the second century of the present era, during the reign of Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius, the Goths began a general movement to the southeast. Hundreds of thousands of them, taking their families, their cattle, and all their household goods, marched back toward the ancient Indo-European homeland their ancestors had left thousands of years earlier.
The Goths west of the Dniester—the Visigoths—moved down into the Danubian lands west of the Black Sea, where they inevitably came into conflict with the Romans. They conquered the Roman province of Dacia for themselves, after defeating a Roman army and killing a Roman emperor (Decius) in the year 251.
Toward the end of the third century, during the reign of Diocletian, the Empire was divided into eastern and western halves, for administrative and military purposes. The progressive breakdown of communications led eventually to separate de facto powers, one centered in Rome and the other in Byzantium (later renamed Constantinople).
During the first three-quarters of the fourth century, despite occasional raids, a state of relatively peaceful coexistence between Goths and Romans pervaded. Especially in the eastern half of the Empire, diplomacy and bribery were used to hold the Goths at bay. During the reign of Constantine (306-337) 40,000 Goths were recruited into the Roman army, and they thenceforth were the bulwark of the Eastern Empire.
It was in the reign of Emperor Valens, in the year 372, that the greatest menace to the White race, both Germans and Romans, since the beginning of recorded history suddenly appeared on the eastern horizon. From the depths of Central Asia a vast horde of brown-skinned, flat-nosed, slant-eyed little horsemen—fast, fierce, hardy, bloodthirsty, and apparently inexhaustible in numbers—came swarming across the steppe around the north end of the Caspian Sea. They were the Huns.
The first to feel their impact were the Alans, living south of the Don between the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea. The Hunnic horde utterly crushed the Alans, some of whose remnants retreated southward into the Caucasus Mountains, while others fled westward in confusion, seeking refuge among the Goths. In the Caucasus today traces of the Nordic Alans are found in the Ossetes, whose language is Indo-European and who are taller and lighter than the Caucasic-speaking peoples around them.
End of the Ostrogoths. Next the Huns fell upon the Ostrogoths and routed them. The aged Ostrogothic king, Hermanric, slew himself in despair, and his successor, Vitimer, was killed in a vain effort to hold back the Brown flood. The Ostrogothic kingdom disintegrated, and its people streamed westward in terror, with the Huns at their heels.
Athanaric, king of the Visigoths, posted himself at the Dniester with a large army, but the Huns crossed the river and defeated him, inflicting great slaughter on his army.
Thus, the Visigoths too were forced to retreat westward. Athanaric petitioned Valens for permission for his people to cross the Danube and settle in Roman lands to the south. Valens consented, but he attached very hard conditions, which the Goths, in their desperation, were forced to accept: they were required to surrender all their weapons and to give up their women and children as hostages to the Romans.
The Goths crossed the Danube in 376 and settled in the Roman province of Lower Moesia, which corresponds roughly to modern Bulgaria. There the Romans took shameful advantage of them. Roman-Jewish merchants, in return for grain and other staples, took the hostage children of the Goths as slaves.
The Goths secretly rearmed themselves and rose up. For two years they waged a war of revenge, ravaging Thrace, Macedonia, and Thessaly. Finally, on August 9, 378, in the great battle of Hadrianople, the Gothic cavalry, commanded now by Fritigern, annihilated Valens’ infantry (most of whom were also Goths), and the emperor himself was killed. This was the worst defeat Rome had suffered since the Goths defeated and killed Decius 127 years earlier, and the battle decisively changed the conduct of future wars. Heretofore, Roman infantry tactics had been considered unbeatable, but Fritigern’s Goths had shown what heavy cavalry could do to infantry unprotected by its own cavalry.
The emperor of the eastern half of the Empire who succeeded Valens took a much more conciliatory stance toward the Goths, and they were confirmed in their possession of much of the territory south of the Danube which they had seized between 376 and 378. The Huns, meanwhile, had occupied Gothic Dacia (presentday Romania), as well as all the lands to the east.
Loss of a Homeland. The ancient homeland of the Nordic race was now in the hands of non-Whites.
For more than four millennia wave after wave of White warriors had come out of the eastern steppe to conquer and colonize Europe: Achaeans, Dorians, Latins, Celts, Germans, Balts, Slavs, Cimmerians, Scythians, Sarmatians, and uncounted and unnamed peoples before all these. But the Sarmatians were the last; after the Huns drove them and the Goths out, no other White barbarians were to come riding out of the east.
Empire of Attila (orange) by 450 A.D.
For the next thousand years the eastern steppe which had been the breeding ground of the Nordic race became the invasion route into Europe for periodic waves of non-White hordes from Asia: Huns, Avars, Turks, Magyars, Mongols.
The Huns contented themselves, for the time being, with that portion of Europe between the Carpathians and the Danube, leaving the Romans and the Germans elsewhere to their own devices. Rome, a hollow shelf peopled largely by Levantines and ruled in effect by a gaggle of filthy-rich Middle Eastern moneylenders, speculators, and merchants, depended for her continued existence upon cleverness and money rather than real strength. Germans menaced her and Germans defended her, and the Romans concentrated their energies on playing German off against German.
The game succeeded in the Eastern Empire, more or less, but not in the Western Empire. A Frank, Arbogast, was the chief adviser—and effective master—of Western Emperor Eugenius in the year 394, having assassinated Eugenius’ predecessor. The emperor of the East, Theodosius, sent his Gothic army against Arbogast, and Arbogast called on his fellow Franks for support. The two German armies fought at Aquileia, near modern Venice, and the Goths defeated the Franks.
Alaric the Bold. Two of the leaders of Theodosius’ army were Alaric the Bold, a Gothic prince, and Stilicho, a Vandal. After the battle of Aquileia Stilicho, nominally subordinate to Theodosius, became the effective master of the Western Empire. Alaric was chosen king of the Visigoths by his tribe and decided to challenge Stilicho, but as long as Stilicho lived he was able to hold Alaric at bay.
The emasculated and Levantinized Romans, unable to face the Germans man to man, bitterly resented their German allies as much as they did their German enemies. This resentment, born of weakness and cowardice, finally got the better of the Romans in 408, and they conspired to have their protector, Stilicho, murdered. Then the Romans in all the Italian cities butchered the wives and children of their German allies—60,000 of them.
This foolish and brutal move sent Stilicho’s German soldiers into Alaric’s arms, and Italy was then at the Goth’s mercy. Alaric’s army ravaged large areas of the peninsula for two years in revenge for the massacre of the German families. Alaric demanded a large ransom from the Romans and forced them to release some 40,000 German slaves.
Fall of Rome. Then, on the night of August 24, 410, Alaric’s Goths took Rome and sacked the city. This date marked, for all practical purposes, the end of the capital of the world. Rome had endured for 1,163 years and had ruled for a large portion of that time, but it would never again be a seat of power. For a few more decades the moribund Empire of the West issued its commands from the fortress city of Ravenna, 200 miles north of Rome, until the whole charade was finally ended in 476. The Empire of the East, on the other hand, would last another thousand years.
The Huns, meanwhile, had not long contented themselves with Dacia, but had begun expanding westward again, wreaking such havoc that whole nations uprooted themselves and fled as the Huns advanced. The Vandals, a German people closely related to the Goths; the Alans who had been driven westward from the Transcaucasian steppe; and the Suebians poured across the Rhine into Gaul in 406, setting still other German nations, such as the Franks, Burgundians, and Alamanni, into motion.
Attila, King of the Huns. The Huns halted their westward push for more than 40 years while they consolidated their hold on all of central and eastern Europe, and on much of northern Europe as well. In 433 they gained a new king, whose name was Attila. In 445, when Attila established his new capital at Buda, in what is now Hungary, the empire of the Huns stretched from the Caspian Sea to the North Sea.
In 451 Attila began moving west again, with the intention of seizing Gaul and then the rest of the Western Empire. His army consisted not only of Huns but also of contingents from all the conquered peoples of Europe: Ostrogoths, Gepids, Rugians, Scirians, Heruls, Thuringians, and others, including Slavs.
One contingent was made up of Burgundians, half of whom the Huns had subjugated (and nearly annihilated) in 436. The struggle between the Burgundians and the Huns forms the background for the German heroic epic, the Nibelungenlied.
Attila’s mixed army threw western Europe into a state of terror as it advanced. So great was the devastation wrought on the countryside that Attila was given the nickname “the Scourge of God,” and it was said that grass never again grew where his horse had trod.
Two armies, one commanded by Aetius, the last of the Western Empire’s Roman generals, and the other by Theodoric, King of the Visigoths, rode against Attila. Aetius and Theodoric united their armies south of the Loire, in central Gaul, and compelled Attila to withdraw to the north-east.
Attila carefully chose the spot to halt his horde and make his stand. It was in a vast, open, and nearly level expanse of ground in northeastern France between the Marne and the Seine, where his cavalry would have ideal conditions for maneuvering. The region was known as the Catalaunian Plains, after the Catalauni, a Celtic people.
In a furious, day-long battle frightful losses were inflicted on both sides, but the Visigoths, Franks, free Burgundians, and Alans of Aetius and Theodoric had gained a decisive advantage over the Huns and their allies by nightfall. Attila retreated behind his wagons and in despair ordered a huge funeral pyre built for himself. He intended neither to be taken alive by his foes nor to have his corpse fall into their hands.
King Theodoric had fallen during the day’s fighting, and the command of the Visigothic army had passed to his son, Thorismund. The latter was eager to press his advantage and avenge his father’s death by annihilating the Hunnic horde.
The wily Roman Actius, however, putting the interests of his dying Empire first, persuaded Thorismund to allow Attila to withdraw his horde from Gaul. Aetius was afraid that if Thorismund completely destroyed the power of the Huns, then the Visigoths would again be a menace to the Empire; he preferred that the Huns and the Visigoths keep one another in check.
Attila and his army ravaged the countryside again, as they made their way back to Hungary. The following year they invaded northern Italy and razed the city of Aquileia to the ground; those of its inhabitants who were not killed fled into the nearby marshes, later to found the city of Venice.
But in 453 Attila died. The 60-year-old Hun burst a blood vessel during his wedding-night exertions, following his marriage to a blonde German maiden, Hildico (called Kriernhild in the Nibelungenlied). The Huns had already been stripped of their aura of invincibility by Theodoric, and the death of their leader diminished them still further in the eyes of their German vassals.
The latter, under the leadership of Ardaric the Gepid, rose up in 454. At the battle of the Nedao River in that year it was strictly German against Hun, and the Germans won a total victory, completely destroying the power of the Huns in Europe.
The vanquished Huns fled eastward, settling finally around the shores of the Sea of Azov in a vastly diminished realm. They left behind them only their name, in Hungary. Unfortunately, they also left some of their genes in those parts of Europe they had overrun. But in eighty years they had turned Europe upside down. Entire regions were depopulated, and the old status quo had vanished.
The following is my abridgement of chapter 21 of William Pierce’s history of the white race, Who We Are:
Mighty Saga of the Northmen
Ninth and 10th Centuries: Viking Triumphs in Western Europe
Purest White Heritage Survives in North Atlantic
Land Scarcity, Spirit of Heroism Impelled Vikings
Christianity, Lack of Northern Solidarity Bring End to Viking Age
Just as it was the Northmen who, by imposing order on Europe’s eastern frontier in the second half of the first millennium, stiffened that frontier and made Russia a White racial bulwark against the non-White hordes of Asia, it was also the Northmen who, in the same era, pushed Europe’s western frontier westward across the great, unknown Ocean Sea, opening up new lands for settlement by succeeding generations of our race.
Called many names—Danes, Geats, Norsemen, Rus, Swedes, Varangers—they are best known to us by the name which is also used to characterize both the age in which they flourished and the way of life of many of them: Vikings. Like two great waves of raiders, conquerors, and colonizers before them, the Goths and the Anglo-Saxons, they came from the Nordic heartland: southern Sweden and Norway, the Danish peninsula, the adjoining portion of northern Germany, and the nearby North Sea and Baltic islands.
They are of special interest to us in our endeavor to understand who we are, not so much because most of us have Viking forebears (although a great many people with immediate roots in Ireland, Scotland, England, and northwestern France, as well as in Scandinavia, do), but because they give us a clearer, more detailed picture of that pure essence of Indo-Europeanism of Whiteness—which is the common heritage of all of us, whether our recent ancestors were Germans, Celts, Balts, or Slavs, than we can obtain from a study of any other European people.
German in language like the Goths and the Anglo-Saxons, the Vikings retained other aspects of Germanic culture which those earlier emigrants from the Nordic heartland had already lost by the dawn of the Viking Age. In particular, the Vikings held to their Indo-European religion and world view longer than any of the other Germanic peoples. They also remained hardier, fiercer in battle, and more venturesome than those who had been softened by the more civilized living to the south.
The Vikings not only serve us as an especially useful epitome of Whiteness at a time when our survival demands a renewal of the best of our old values and strengths, but they also provide us with a clear reminder of the danger inherent in one of our most lethal weaknesses: excessive individualism and lack of racial solidarity. A study of the Vikings acquaints us with both the best and the worst (or, in this age, the least affordable) of the characteristics of our race.
A tenth-century Viking narrative poem, Rigsthula (Song of Rig), provides a fanciful account of the origins of the Scandinavian population. In it a traveler named Rig (i.e., “king”) is given lodging at three dwellings. At each he manages to impregnate the woman of the house before he leaves, thereby fathering three sons.
The first woman is old and wrinkled, and she dwells in a hovel. The son she bears for Rig is dark, stooped, and ugly. He is named Thrall, and from him is descended the race of serfs and slaves, the hewers of wood and the carriers of water.
The second woman is younger, better looking, better housed, and more industrious. Her son by Rig is a sturdy, light-eyed boy, and is given the name Karl. From Karl is descended the race of free peasants and craftsmen.
The third woman is young, tall, blond, and lovely, and the house in which she lives is large and magnificent. She bears Rig a son who is strong and straight of limb, white of skin, fair of hair, light of eyes, and quick of mind. He is named Jarl (Earl), and he quickly learns the magic of the runes and the mastery of weapons. He hunts, rides, fights, and fears no man. From him is descended the race of kings and lords of the earth.
Rig himself is identified with the Norse god Heimdall, the whitest of all the gods and the father of all mankind. Rigsthula reminds us of the ancient Aryan religious work, the Rigveda, which, more than 20 centuries earlier, also gave a fanciful account of the origins of the races. It is clear that Rig’s descendants via Thrall represent the dark, round-headed element in the Scandinavian population, and that this element was at some time in the past held in a servile status by a largely Nordic ruling class.
Scandinavian mythology may also reflect racial memories of early contacts between Nordic invaders and Cro-Magnon natives, in the numerous references to “frost giants.”
In any event, by the dawn of the Viking Age a general mixing had taken place. Thralls may still have been darker, on the average, than the free farmers or the nobility, but one could find Nordic slaves, largely the consequence of the Viking policy of enslaving prisoners of war, and one could also find darker elements among the wealthy and powerful, as evidenced by the names of such leaders as Halfdan the Black (ninth-century king of a Viking realm in southern Norway). By far the dominant racial element among the Vikings, however, was Nordic.
To the north of the Northmen, in Norway, Sweden, and Finland, were the Lapps, a very primitive race which lived a nomadic life and gained its sustenance primarily from the reindeer of the forest and tundra. The sixth-century historians Jordanes and Procopius describe the Lapps as being culturally little above the beasts on which they preyed.
Both racially and linguistically the Lapps were closely related to the Finno-Ugric tribes to the east. They were short, predominantly dark (although today some Lapps are blond, apparently having absorbed Nordic genes), broad-nosed, and extremely round-headed. They were certainly partly, and perhaps wholly, responsible for the dark element among the Vikings, although there was little mixing between Vikings and Lapps during the Viking Age, because of their entirely different lifestyles. The mixing must have taken place during the prehistoric period, perhaps shortly after the proto-Germans arrived in Scandinavia and before they had driven the ancestors of the Lapps further north.
The isolation by terrain and climate of many Viking communities did not prevent the Vikings from having a remarkable unity of culture, language, and spirit but it certainly did not encourage political unity. Viking individualism seemed to be inimical to a sense of racial solidarity. While more subjective races to the south were often drawn together by the perceived need for mutual support in the face of a hostile world, Vikings were much more inclined to face the world as individuals.
Their loyalty and sense of community seldom extended beyond the fighting band to which they belonged—or, at most, to that limited region of Norway or Denmark or whatever which they considered “home”—and they would as gladly, or almost as gladly, hew down the Vikings of a rival band as a monastery full of trembling priests in some southern land. Within the band, however, the Viking ethos demanded a solidarity as uncompromising as that of the other Germanic peoples of their time.
On the Continent too the ninth century was a period of growing pressure from the north. A Frankish chronicler writes:
The number of ships increases; the endless flood of Vikings never ceases to grow bigger, Everywhere Christ’s people are the victims of massacre, burning, and plunder. The Vikings overrun all that lies before them, and none can withstand them. They seize Bordeaux, Perigueux, Limoges, Angouleme, Toulouse; Angers, Tours, and Orleans are made deserts. Ships past counting voyage up the Seine…. Rouen is laid waste, looted, and burned. Paris, Beauvais, Meaux are taken; Melun’s stronghold is razed to the ground; Chartres occupied; Evreux and Bayeux looted; and every town invested.
Just as in England and Ireland, however, Vikings who at first came only to seize women and gold later came to seize land as well. This process reached its climax early in the 10th century when a Viking band wrested away from the West Franks a substantial piece of territory in northwestern France, south of the lower Seine. In 911 the Frankish king Charles the Simple, the great-great-grandson of Charlemagne, gave legal sanction to this conquest by recognizing the Viking leader Ganga-Hrolf as his vassal and confirming the latter in the ownership of the land which his band had already seized.
Ganga-Hrolf (i.e., Hrolf the Ganger or Ralph the Walker, so named because he was too large to be carried by any horse), called Rollo by the French, in turn submitted to baptism and settled down to the task of enlarging and consolidating his domain. He was the first Duke of Normandy, as his land came to be known, after its Nor(se)man conquerors.
First White American. In the year 986 the Viking Bjarni Herjulfsson, sailing from Norway to Greenland, missed his intended destination and instead found himself off the coast of a previously unknown land: North America. Bjarni did not land, but he carried the news of his sighting back to Greenland.
Leif, the son of Eric the Red, bought Bjarni’s ship from him and set out to see the new land for himself. He established a small settlement at a place he called Vinland, on the island of Newfoundland, but he only spent one winter there.
A few years later another Greenland Viking, Thorfinn Karlsefni, made a determined effort to establish a permanent Viking presence in America. He fitted out three longships and recruited 160 men and women to accompany him on the westward voyage. They built a community in North America which they called Straumfjord, and in 1004 Thorfinn’s wife Gudrid bore him a son, Snorri, there: the first native White American.
Unrelenting attacks by Indians—Skraelings to the Vikings—made life very difficult for Thorfinn’s American colonists, however, and after three years they abandoned their settlement and returned to Greenland.
Had the Vikings’ weapons been technologically superior to the bows and arrows of the Skraelings—as Columbus’ firearms were—then White history in America would have begun 500 years sooner than it did. As it was, the individual superiority of the Viking warriors in battle could not make up for the enormous numerical advantage enjoyed by the hordes of Red men who opposed them.
In 1962 archaeologists excavated the ruins of what is believed to have been Straumfjord, near the present Newfoundland village of L’Anse aux Meadows.
In Greenland too, with is utterly inhospitable environment, the Viking presence did not last. Initially there were no hostile Skraelings in Greenland—in fact, the first Eskimos did not arrive on the island until nearly 400 years after the Vikings—but the total lack of trees, metal ores, and other natural resources, together with the scarcity of farmland, kept the White population down to a maximum of 3,000 persons, scattered among some 300 farms.
Ironically, it seems to have been piracy which was the undoing of the Greenland Vikings. Although they were Christianized shortly after the year 1,000 and gave up their warlike ways and the raiding of other lands for gold and women, there was still a strong demand for blond slave girls in Moorish Spain and North Africa and in the Turkish lands to the southeast. The demand was met by pirates recruited in England and Germany by Jewish middlemen, who began raiding the island settlements of the North Atlantic in the 14th century.
Purest Cultural Heritage. Iceland—which suffered its last attack by White-slaving pirates as late as the 19th century—and the other Viking islands survived the raids, but Greenland did not.
Today these North Atlantic islands, of which Iceland with its quarter-million inhabitants is the most significant, preserve the Viking cultural heritage in its purest form. The modern Icelandic and Faroese languages are nearly identical to the Old Norse spoken by the Vikings, while English and the other Germanic languages have undergone great changes during the last 1,000 years. In folkways as well, many Viking traits have been preserved in the islands, especially in Iceland and the Faroes. There has even been a return to the Viking religion by some Icelanders in recent years.
Racially, Iceland does not present quite as pure a picture as one might wish, for the ninth-century Viking settlers were not all jarls and karls; they brought their thralls along with them as well. Despite this lapse, their descendants today are biologically closer to the original Viking stock than the population of any other country. This racial quality is reflected not only in the tallest average statute in the White world, but in the highest literacy rate (100 per cent) as well.
Not only do all Icelanders read and write, but a far higher proportion of them are authors than is true for any other country. And, despite her tiny population, which is able to support only a single university, Iceland is able to boast a larger per capita Nobel Laureate quota than any other nation on earth.
Iceland is outstanding in another respect as well: alone among the White nations of the world it does not bear the curse of non-White minorities; it has no Blacks, no Jews, no Vietnamese, no Mexicans. Iceland has not been invaded for the last 1,000 years, except during the Second World War, when the country was occupied by American troops. The bulk of the foreigners withdrew after the war, and Icelanders insisted that future U.S. troops sent to man the air base which the United States was allowed to maintain on the island include no non-Whites.
The greatest debt that the White race owes to Icelanders is for their preservation of the Norse literary heritage: the Viking sagas. While church officials in other European countries were rounding up and burning all the pre-Christian books they could lay their hands on during the Middle Ages, Icelandic scholars were busy writing down the sagas which still existed only in oral form and transcribing, annotating, and expanding those which had been put into writing earlier.
Even where we must use extreme caution in drawing historical data from the sagas, they give us a clear and unambiguous picture of the Viking ethos and the Viking world view, of Viking attitudes, beliefs, feelings and temperament.
Fortunately, when it is Norse history we want we have the records of the Vikings’ literate Frankish and English cousins to supplement and clarify the semi-legendary material of the sagas. From these records we can also gain a good deal of insight into some of the external forces and circumstances which raised the curtain on the Viking Age in the eighth century and then lowered it in the 11th.
One of the forces was certainly the tide of Christendom which was rising over Europe from the south during the eighth century. The Franks had become Christianized during the sixth century, after their king, Chlodwig (Clovis), accepted baptism, but the Saxons, the immediate neighbors of the Northmen, rejected the alien religion from the Levant and held to their ancestral ways, as did the Northmen themselves, of course.
Genocidal Evangelism. Beginning in 772, a year after he became sole king of the Franks upon the death of his brother Carloman, Karl, later known to the French as Charlemagne, son of Pepin the Short and grandson of Karl the Hammer, waged a 32-year campaign of genocidal evangelism against the Saxons. The campaign began with Karl’s destruction of the Irminsul, or World Pillar, the Saxon equivalent of the Norse World Ash, Yggdrasil, located in the Saxons’ most sacred grove, at Eresburg (on the site of the present Marburg), and it became bloodier, crueler, and more intolerant as it wore on.
In 774, at Quierzy, Karl issued a proclamation that he would kill every Saxon who refused to accept the sweet yoke of Jesus. Henceforth a contingent of Christian priests accompanied the Frankish army on its expeditions against the Saxons, and in every Saxon village those who refused to be baptized by the priests were slaughtered on the spot.
Karl’s savagery reached a peak in the tenth year of the evangelism: in 782, at Verden on the Aller, with the blessing of the Church, he had 4,500 Saxon nobles beheaded. Twelve years later, in 794, he introduced a policy under which every third Saxon was uprooted from his land and forced to resettle among Franks or other Christianized tribes.
Fairly early in this campaign, in 777, one of the most prominent of the Saxon chieftains, Widukind, took shelter among the Danes and appealed to their king, Sigfred, for assistance against the Franks. Although the Danes were wary of becoming involved in a full-scale war against the formidable Karl, they and the other Northern peoples were put on their guard, and they became increasingly indignant over the Frankish suppression of the Saxons’ religion.
Karl’s brutal campaign against the Saxons undoubtedly helped raise a certain consciousness in the North of the spiritual and cultural differences which separated Scandinavia from those lands which had fallen under the yoke of the Christian Church.
The internal forces leading to the eruption of the Vikings from their Northern fjords were even stronger than the external ones. Among the former was a very high birthrate specifically among the most active and aggressive of the Northmen, the result of their customary practice of polygyny.
According to the 11th-century German ecclesiastical historian, Adam of Bremen, every Swede of more than average substance kept two or three wives, while the nobility had no limit to the number of women they allowed themselves. For example, Harald Fairhair, the Norwegian warrior who unified Norway in the ninth century and became its first king, had as many as 40 sons by some accounts, at least nine of whom are known to history; and Harald’s son Erik Bloodaxe had at least eight sons who grew to manhood.
In the capitalistic South such a practice may have meant only that the cleverest and crookedest paper-shufflers—i.e., the richest men—would have more progeny, on the average, than honest workingmen, but in the hard living North, where every man’s mettle was tested almost daily by his environment and by his fellows, it was marvelously eugenic: the strong, the able, and the aggressive had proportionately more children than they would have had in a monogamous society.
Another interesting eugenic contrast between North and South is provided by the Christian practice of clerical celibacy. Although there were many periods during the Middle Ages in which violations were commonplace, as early as the fourth century the Church began insisting on total celibacy for the higher clergy. With the growing incidence of monasticism after the sixth century, a greatly increased portion of the population of Christian Europe was subjected to the rule of celibacy.
In the Middle Ages the clerical life was not, as is often the case today, simply a refuge for those who could succeed at nothing else; it was usually the only route to scholarship—and often the only route to literacy as well—and it attracted many able and intelligent men, whose genes were then lost to their race. For a thousand years, until the Reformation, there was a selective draining away of Christian Europe’s intellectual vitality.
A Mighty Hive. The high birthrate among the most active and energetic elements of the population in the Northern countries led to land-hunger and the drive for external conquests. In the words of 17th-century English statesman and writer Sir William Temple: “Each of these countries was like a mighty hive, which, by the vigor of propagation and health of climate, growing too full of people, threw out some new swarm at certain periods of time that took wing and sought out some new abode, expelling or subduing the old inhabitants and seating themselves in their rooms.” This state of affairs also held long before the Viking Age, of course.
In addition to the generalized effects of a high birthrate, two other consequences of polygyny which bore on the rise of viking as a way of life were the large numbers of second, third, fourth, and later sons in the families of Norse landholders—sons left without inheritance and without land, unless they could wrest it away from someone else—and a shortage of women.
The most popular way to solve the latter problem was to go on a raid and carry off women from Ireland, England, or France, although there was also a heavy traffic in Slav slave girls from the Rus realms. The Hrafnsmal tells of life in Harald Fairhair’s court: “Glorious is their way of life, those warriors who play chess in Harald’s court. They are made rich with money and fine swords, with metal of Hunaland and girls from the east.”
The political consolidation which began taking place in Scandinavia in the ninth century served as an especially strong impetus to Viking colonizers. As mentioned earlier, the Vikings were extremely individualistic, extremely resentful of any encroachments on their freedom of action. After Harald Fairhair won a great sea victory at Hafrsfjord over the Viking chieftains of western Norway in 872, many of them left Norway with their households and their followers and settled in Iceland and the smaller islands of the North Atlantic rather than submit to Harald’s rule.
A century later, political consolidation having been achieved, Scandinavian monarchs began to realize the policy advantages in bringing their people into the same religious camp as their neighbors to the south. The first to take the step was Denmark’s Harald Bluetooth, son of King Gorm the Old. In 965, fifteen years after Gorm’s death, Harald allowed himself to be baptized, and then he undertook the forcible conversion of the rest of the Danes: a move which did not sit well with many and led to further emigration and turmoil in the North. It also led eventually to Harald’s deposition and banishment.
The Last Viking. The coming of Christianity to the Viking world eventually meant the end of that world, but it did not change the Viking ethos immediately, as is evidenced by the life of a man who was certainly one of the most remarkable of all the Vikings, and the last of the truly great ones: Harald Sigurdsson, who, after he became king of Norway, was also known as Harald Hardraada (Hard Ruler) and Harald the Ruthless.
His deeds are the subject of one of the most fascinating of the Viking sagas (King Harald’s Saga), which we would be inclined to dismiss as an unusually imaginative work of heroic fiction, were it not solidly confirmed by the historical record.
The Vikings’ fighting spirit had been sapped by Christianity, but an even larger factor in their demise was their inability to keep in check their quarrels among themselves, combine their forces against outsiders, and thus match the growing power of kings in more unified lands than their own. Excessive individualism took its final toll.