This review of Jean Raspail’s book, The Camp of the Saints, is by Dominic Hampshire. It first appeared in the independent magazine, The Scorpion, which can be obtained by writing to The Editor, The Scorpion, Schnellweider Strasse 50, 5000 Koln 80, Germany.
Opponents of non-European immigration are frequently put on the defensive in argument by being told they do not pursue the logic of their own arguments. “If you want to repatriate the coloureds”, they are told, “Why not the Irish as well? And the Normans? They’re immigrants aren’t they?” The assumption in such arguments is made clear that the multi-racialist is a reasonable fellow; the separatist is ‘on trial’ to defend ‘eccentric’ (or worse) ideas.
Raspail’s novel involves a change of roles. Here it is the multi-racialist who is ‘in the dock’. It is his argument that is taken to its logical conclusion. What is his limit? How many immigrants exactly would he permit into his country before crying ‘halt’? Most multi-racialists try to evade this rather awkward question. They shouldn’t be allowed to. How many blacks should be allowed to come into Britain? Three million? Five million? Fifty million?
After all the current situation pleases almost no one. Racialists and multi-racialists alike regard the new Nationality Act as an illogicality of the worst kind, neither properly ethnic, nor properly colour blind. It is an Act of an uncertain and frightened government that desperately hopes that compromise will calm an already explosive situation. It is certainly difficult to see how the status of some Pakistanis is defended while the status of some Pakistanis not yet arrived in Britain is under attack. Either one assumes a ethnic basis for nationality or one doesn’t. By contrast, the Socialist Workers’ Party slogan, “Abolish Racist Immigration Controls!” is entirely logical. It follows naturally enough from the provisions of the British Nationality Act of 1946. Either one believes in the repatriation of non-European immigrants or one believes in the abolition of immigration controls. Any position in between these “extremes” may have a lot to do with political expediency but it has precious little to do with logic. It is high time that the British people stopped dithering and made up their minds which they want. If they don’t then their minds will be made up for them, for the pressures to reduce the limitations on immigration are constantly increasing.
Time Running Out
Time is running out for the defenders of Europe. In the year 2,000 Raspail reminds us in his introduction, there will be seven billion people in the world, of whom less than a billion will be European. Raspail prefaces his book with a statement made by the late President Boumedienne of Algeria:”Together we may be able to seek a new style of life which will make it possible to feed over seven million people who will be living on the earth in the year 2,000. If not, no quantity of atomic bombs will be able to stem the human tidal wave which will depart from the poorer quarters of the earth and break into the relatively open spaces of the rich temperate zone, in search of survival”.
Anyone who has lived in the poorer areas of the world even for a short space of time will know that the natives there do indeed conceive of Europe as a land flowing with milk and honey. Missionaries, colonial administrators and now business enterprises have all played their part in fostering this disastrous misconception. Now with the rise of egalitarianism, we in Europe are being increasingly called upon to fit our actions to our words. How much longer can the Europe continue to preach universal equality and at the same time maintain immigration controls? How much longer will it be before the “Third World” demands rather than asks, to be taken to the promised land, the “Motherland” about which the European colonists told the natives so many good things? According to Raspail that time is closer than we think. What will happen when the demand is made? How will Europe react? This is the subject of the novel.
The signs are that European governments would not try to resist a coloured invasion of Europe. We have had a number of ‘dress rehearsals’ that bode ill for those who oppose the idea of universal egalitarianism. In the case of the Vietnamese the whole of Europe indulged in an absolute orgy of self-approach. “Share everything we have,” went the cry, “We are all brothers now!”
In Raspail’s novel the dam has finally broken. A million refugees from famine on the Indian sub-continent have seized a fleet of boats and set sail for Europe. Theirs is seen as a test case by the rest of the inhabitants of the “Third World”. What will Europe do?
This novel is more than a prophecy of the end of the Europe; it is an examination of the causes of our coming end…. It is a merciless expose of the contradictions of the liberal way of life.