On the Coming Civil War

On the Coming Civil War

Dedicated to those of this community who, through the Rajneesh invasion and occupation of 1981-85, remained, resisted, and remembered.
— Plaque beneath the post office flagpole, Antelope, OR

You’d think that if you were being invaded, you would know it as it was happening. But often times this is not the case. In 1981, dozens and then hundreds of members of the cult of Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh moved into the outskirts of Antelope, Oregon, which at the time had a population of around 50 people. The native occupants thought the change bizarre, novel, and slightly concerning, but did not think of the new settlement emerging on the edge of their town as an invasion. The word, the idea, never crossed their mind. But it was an invasion. After the fact, it would be absurd to deny that the strange and sudden arrival of the Rajneeshis was an invasion. Yet only with hindsight were people able to recognize the event for what it was.

What about warfare?

According to a recent Rasmussen poll, 31% of Americans believe that we are likely to see a Civil War within the next five years, while 59% are concerned that Trump’s opponents will resort to violence (33% “very concerned”). And even some Congressmen are thinking along similar lines: “America is heading in the direction of another Harpers Ferry. After that comes Ft. Sumter.” And of course, yours truly concluded In Defense of Hatred with a similar prediction:

And if not, the greater the glory for those of us who saw the war coming in time to prepare.
In Defense of Hatred, February 5, 2017

But what do people mean by “war?” Will we recognize it if, or when, it happens? Is it really as likely as a third of Americans believe? And if so, what might we do to prepare?

All of these are important questions, but answering them will require a better understanding of the nature of war, just as the inhabitants of Antelope needed a better understanding of the nature of invasions in order to identify what was going on around them.

The parallels between war and invasion run deeper than mere analogies however, because in many cases, the two are essentially the same. The famous Prussian general and military theorist Carl von Clausewitz famously described war as “the continuation of politics by other means,” which means that war can be waged without open violence on a massive scale. But a mind on par with Clausewitz — Israeli military historian Martin van Creveld — has recently argued that in many cases, immigration and warfare are functionally identical:

War is far from the only cause of migration. Other reasons, primarily economic, have always played an important role in encouraging people to leave their native lands. As the examples of the Puritans and the Huguenots show, religious motives can also be a factor. Yet even when these other reasons were the cause, war and migration have been closely linked in various and complex ways.

At some times, war and migration were essentially the same, as in the great migration of peoples during the first few centuries after Christ, the Arab expansion after 632 AD, the Magyar invasion of Europe, the Mongol invasions of China, and the movements of many African tribes from one part of the continent to another…

If we sometimes cannot recognize a migration as an invasion and as warfare, it stands to reason that there will be certain kinds of warfare which we will not recognize as such when they appear.

It is also probable that our inability to detect warfare has to do with the disconnection between the images we associate with warfare and actual warfare. Imagine being invaded by thousands of people and having one’s town completely overwhelmed, but not realizing it was an invasion because all of the depictions of “invasions” you had seen or heard described the invaders as being on horseback, and these invaders were on foot. In exactly this way, we might completely miss a war going on around us because we do not see tanks or airplanes, nor uniformed men with guns charging trenches and bunkers, nor even official declarations of war.

Many of us, for instance, missed that the attack of 9/11 was an act of war. We treated it merely as a crime, or gave it the vague label “act of terror,” leaving President Bush to be the one appearing to declare war. But the purpose of 9/11 — while multifaceted and somewhat complex — was ultimately to spread the political ideology of militant Islam globally. The attacks on that fateful September day were more to inspire awe and recognition than they were to instill terror. In fact, the attacks did not really induce terror at all; merely shock, then sadness, then militaristic fury. The Zetas and MS13 are far more effective in the terror department than any Islamic organization currently in existence.

This misunderstanding of the nature of war is understandable as most of us have not experienced war. All that most millennials (and indeed, most Gen-Xers and Boomers) have to go on are movies and novels. But as Vox Day clarifies, warfare isn’t fundamentally about killing people:

…what is the ultimate purpose of war? What is the usual outcome of a successful war? When we think about war, we tend to think about killing people. We tend to think about the destruction of the battlefield. But really, that’s not necessarily true. If you look at the successful wars of Nazi Germany, most of the countries that they defeated they did so without very much bloodshed. When they overran Holland, when they conquered Norway, when they conquered Belgium, even the war for France was, compared to World War I and other wars, relatively bloodless. And yet we wouldn’t dream of considering those various wars to not have been military conquests. So the actual outcome of a war is the change in the ruler. It’s a change in who governs whom.

All of this is to say that an American Civil War will most likely not look anything like its predecessor in 1860, just as that war did not look like the Napoleonic war that occurred prior to it, and which was the primary source of military theory at that time.

William S. Lind and Gregory Thiele have written about four generations of modern war, “modern war” beginning after the peace of Westphalia in 1648, which established the nation state as the only legitimate kind of participant in the domain of warfare. The fact that this state of warfare is basically all we’ve been exposed to for the last 350 years makes it easy to forget that this paradigm was not always dominant, nor even the norm. Wars were fought between cities, between families, between businesses, between religions, and between races.

Vietnam and Afghanistan marked a turning point. They showed that in the modern age, non-state actors can take on nation-states and win. Through a creative combination of traditional guerrilla warfare, migration, lawfare, Alinsky tactics, and other strategies designed to achieve dominance and power over others outside of the traditional political channels, non-state groups can, and will, take on nation-states and other non-state groups in warfare of the classical, pre-Westphalian variety.

So, with that lengthy but necessary framework established, the questions remain: will there be war? What will the sides be? What will it be like? And how might we prepare for it?

Will there be war?

In order to determine whether war is likely, one has to determine whether war is desirable to at least one possible participant.

Political power is dependent upon the formation of supporting coalitions. These coalitions are composed of demographics which can be dissected and appealed to in an almost infinite variety of ways (women, Christians, men over the age of 45, people who listen to metal, etc). However, three categories of demographic identity seem to overpower all others when push comes to shove, historically speaking. Those are racereligion, and nationality.

Despite all talk of being a “post-racial society,” American political scientists live and breathe strategies and techniques for getting the “Hispanic vote” or the “white evangelical vote” or the “inner-city black vote.” Obama managed to get 95% of blacks, and it is reasonable to suspect that the Democratic Party selected him in part to appeal to this demographic block, regardless of the personal motives and intentions of candidate Obama himself. As the first Prime Minister of Singapore Lee Kuan Yew said in an interview with Der Spiegel, “in multiracial societies, you don’t vote in accordance with your economic interests and social interests, you vote in accordance with race and religion.”

Political entities like the Republican party and the Democratic party — and the Aristocratic families they are attached to (the Bushes, the Clintons, the Kennedys, the Roosevelts, etc) — live and die on political power, in the way that businesses live and die on demand for their products and services. If the potential payoff outweighs the risk, then they are likely to choose less traditional, or rather, less traditionally acceptable means of acquiring and retaining that power as a strategy.

Long before the “progressive” movement had taken over the Democratic Party, immigrants and racial minorities were not particularly powerful as a demographic block. Yet as time went on, and the generally more populist and “working class” appeal of the Democratic party drew in more immigrants and racial minorities, non-whites as a block grew as both a source of political power and as a self-identifying demographic within America. The logic of oppositional parties vying for power naturally pits the constituent demographics against each other: men against women, Catholic against Protestant, Northerner against Southerner, and White against Black. This is all “politics as usual,” and while it can build tension, and even violence on occasion, it is not, by itself, a likely source of civil war in most cases, because in normal politics, there is equilibrium. A win for Republicans in one cycle is likely to herald victory for Democrats in the next, and vice versa. When the wins begin to appear permanent, however, the equilibrium is lost. The desperation of the survival instinct — the survival of the party’s political power, that is, not the individuals it constitutes — may tip the scale and make war attractive.

Since the nation’s inception, both dominant political parties (not always “Republican” and “Democrat”) were essentially appealing to Americans. There was some early religious friction, but on the whole, everyone spoke the same language, ate the same food, worshiped the same God, and came from the same race. But in the early parts of the 20th century, the Democrats in the North East realized that they could appeal to Irish Catholic immigrants, and set about more or less inventing a sense of oppression among the Irish (although abuse and bigotry against the Irish existed in the 19th century, the scale and degree commonly accepted today is exaggerated and in some cases, largely fictitious).

The Irish in particular are not especially important, except what their political prominence represented as a shift in American-left political strategy. Rather than appealing to sub-populations of Americans, the Democrats began politically investing in racial, religious, and ethnic minorities generally, especially with blacks. Much later, this would be expanded into sexual minorities (LGBTQ), religious minorities (Muslims), and immigrants (largely Latino Catholics).

At first glance, homosexuals and Muslims seem like odd bedfellows, given the Muslim predilection for throwing gay men off of buildings. But from the perspective of the political powers that be, it’s perfectly sensible as a demographic coalition against the dominant power in the nation, which is white Christians (protestants) of Northern-European descent, generally speaking. They even began crafting moral theories denying the legitimacy of demographic power… at least if you’re white.

Unfortunately, this strategy crossed the ordinary boundaries of what people were historically willing to consider their “in-group,” based on self-identified nations. Religion by itself is hard, and race arguably even harder, but combine the two and throw in foreign languages with a steady stream of invaders to pump up the left’s voting bloc, and you have a recipe for extreme civil instability. When the demographic blocs are genetic, rather than based upon intra-national issues, and when there are disparities in birth-rates between these groups, and then massive waves of immigration, the political equilibrium is gone, seemingly for good. In its place is a whole lot of confusion, mistrust, resentment, and in some cases, hatred. And at the center of it all lies control over the most powerful military and economy in the world.

The Left’s investment in minorities united by their opposition to whites means that more immigration will lead to a permanent victory for the Left. If the Right manages to stem the flow of immigration, or reverse it, then it will win a permanent victory over the progressive Left. The permanence of victory and the high stakes of the game mean that no strategy will be off the table, so long as it works. And history is nothing if not an ongoing demonstration of the viability of warfare.

In short, war is almost certainly in our very near future.

What will the sides be?

Given that politics was the source of the division, it might be intuitive to think that the conflict will be between liberals and conservatives. There may be some of this, and I expect virtually every reason for fighting will be cloaked in ideological language (“freedom” vs. “human rights,” etc). But ultimately, this is just more ex post facto political rationalization. The sides will be what they have been drawn up to be over the last 70 years, roughly speaking. That is, pro-whites and anti-whites.

Why race? Why not religion? Why not nationality? Though the United States is broadly more religious than Western Europe, it is still not religious enough to motivate a war in defense of Christendom. In fact, most of religiosity now seems geared more towards being nice and getting along with everyone than with traditional religious piety. Religion simply isn’t a sharp enough line in the West to dictate the sides in a coming war.

So too with nationality. America has tacitly granted the outsider’s definition of what it means to be American. This definition includes holding certain values and little else… except it is the values themselves that are in dispute. Thus virtually anyone can claim to be “American” when it is convenient, and oppose it in turn. Race is the only historically major identity left, and we cannot easily slough off our skin and swap it in for something different.

As descriptors, “pro-white” and “anti-white” are subtly but importantly different than “white” and “non-white.” An Asian man cannot be white, but he can be pro-white. A white woman cannot be non-white, but she can be anti-white. Needless to say, the majority of whites will decide that they are pro-themselves, and the majority of non-whites will see that there is a fair bit on offer to them if they simply join the rest of the “minority” groups against whites.

Opposition to whites has been tastefully disguised for the last 30-40 years, generally speaking, but it is gradually becoming more overt. In the beginning, it sounded very plausible: abstract articulations that objectified morality — thus separating an individual from any right to take his or her own side in a matter of politics — were applied selectively to whites. “White privilege” and other manifestations of standpoint theory were injected into academic discussions of politics. Many whites were shockingly open to the concept, as if inherited privilege were a bad thing if it did not benefit all peoples of the globe equally. But it is much more difficult for even the most trusting and gullible of whites to get behind open calls to “get rid of white people” (archive), and even the more moderate left is beginning to notice. In some circles, anti-white sentiment is so commonplace that it’s banal. The future of the Left is probably progressive, and the progressive movement is fundamentally anti-white. This is not a matter of ideology; it’s a matter of acquiring and retaining political power. The progressive left has invested itself in a large demographic set composed of groups with nothing in common except that they are not average white people. If they are not anti-white, they lose.

What will it be like?

Given what has been successful at achieving the aims of war in the last few years, we can expect a lot of propaganda, lawfare, doxxing, boycotting, and mechanisms of disruption that are as harmful as imaginatively possible without being outright illegal. Expect everyone unanimously to condemn as immoral anything illegal, like punching someone in the face, but defend acts far more harmful but not as clearly illegal, like getting someone evicted from their home.

The violence will likely come in two primary forms. First, riots. They will be billed as “demonstrations” and expressions of free speech, but will inevitably turn destructive, with vandalism (hopefully of the enemy’s property), and violence towards the enemy should they show up. Results may vary.

The second, more sinister form will likely be anonymous bombings, in the manner of the IRA, Weather Underground, the Taliban, or Ted Kaczynski. Just last week, in fact, Antifa threatened to do exactly this:

This is all going to get more extreme. And it should. We are living in extreme times. The harm that is being done to all of us by the people in the American government is extreme. To imagine that Mexican immigrants should happily cook for and serve meals to people who enable a man who is determined to demonize and persecute them as subhuman criminals is far more outrageous than the idea that those enablers should not be served in restaurants. I do not believe that Trump administration officials should be able to live their lives in peace and affluence while they inflict serious harms on large portions of the American population. Not being able to go to restaurants and attend parties and be celebrated is just the minimum baseline here. These people, who are pushing America merrily down the road to fascism and white nationalism, are delusional if they do not think that the backlash is going to get much worse. Wait until the recession comes. Wait until Trump starts a war. Wait until the racism this administration is stoking begins to explode into violence more frequently. Read a fucking history book. Read a recent history book. The U.S. had thousands of domestic bombings per year in the early 1970s. This is what happens when citizens decide en masse that their political system is corrupt, racist, and unresponsive. The people out of power have only just begun to flex their dissatisfaction. The day will come, sooner that you all think, when Trump administration officials will look back fondly on the time when all they had to worry about was getting hollered at at a Mexican restaurant. When you aggressively fuck with people’s lives, you should not be surprised when they decide to fuck with yours.

As scary as this may sound, the reality of the violence will likely be sporadic and distant, more a subject of infinite internet-outrage than a lived-reality for ordinary people. The real fear will not be from the violence, but from the ever-present threat of having one’s business or family harassed for signaling — intentionally or otherwise — that you are on the wrong side. Any degree of asymmetry in this harassment campaign will incentivize the general public to side with the more terrifying of the two sides, meaning that despite everyone’s protestations to the contrary, the more intolerant side is likely to win in the long run. Civility is not the way to salvage things; it simply loses.

“Harassment” has a number of connotations, and may sound as benign as mean words. But as a 4th-Generation-War tactic, it is designed to get you to lose your job, to separate you from your family (who may blame you for the harassment and instability they are experiencing, rather than the people perpetrating the harassment), and to make life as unlivable as possible. The suffering this can cause is very real, and lacks even the nobility of enduring more extreme violence, which can invoke courage, and will generally garner at least some sympathy and solidarity when suffered.

In short, the coming civil war will be characterized by infrequent (but much-referenced) street skirmishes, anonymous acts of arson and bombings, and the occasional Anders Breivik-style spree shooting, but most of all, by a culture of lawfare and “legal” warfare that threatens to severely punish anyone who can be identified as a leader or even a member of the opposing group. Rather than the sometimes heated disagreement that covers mutual pursuit of a common aim, as in ordinary politics, the coming civil war will have different sides pursuing radically different aims, disguising their motives in the language of morality and commonality. The difference is subtle in appearance, but the implications are profound, and the effects will be undeniable.

How might we prepare?

The intuitive response to the prospect of war might be to move to another country, or to buy a gun and to get in shape. The latter response (at least the fitness portion) is good advice generally, and guns can be fun for recreation and hunting, but their usefulness in a 4th Generation War is going to be relatively negligible compared to previous conflicts. Moving to another country may help you and your family temporarily escape the conflict at home, but it turns you into a new invading force for someone else. Eventually, we all have to face the conflict that the politics of multiculturalism has brought to our doorsteps, and all else being equal, it’s better to have the home-court advantage.

So what can be done?

1. Become Antifragile

Making yourself financially and socially resistant to the harassment of the other side is the 4GW equivalent of building fortifications and battlements. Diversify your income as best you can, and network with people who share your political views. Try to become less dependent upon infrastructure controlled by the enemy, and familiarize yourself with the basics of how to identify and resist attacks, and ideally, how to profit from them.

2. Don’t Talk to the Media

Really, don’t talk to the enemy generally. Everything you say can and will be used against you, no matter how sincere they make themselves appear. A journalist, or even a blogger, may ask questions, seeming to have genuine curiosity about what you believe and why, only to excise one quote without context and remark upon how Hitler once said something vaguely similar. This piece gets distributed to hundreds of thousands of people, while your attempts at rebutting this character-assassination reach a few hundred. Now riled-up activists believe you are a Nazi, and they hold nothing to be more moral than fighting against fascists.

They can still attempt to do this without your comments, but it is never as persuasive or as punchy as when it is in the subject’s “own words.” Don’t give them the ammunition. You are not clever enough to outsmart them, even if you are smarter than all of them, because they can edit it or simply omit what is not convenient for their narrative.

3. Recognize the Enemy

This is arguably the hardest and the most important point, because the enemy will try to portray itself as objective and as civically-minded, rather than as revolutionary. They just want dialogue. By outward appearances alone, this will likely be a compelling facade. But it is just a facade. We know this based not upon what they say, but upon what they do. Even the most “moderate” and “reasonable” leftists, who are aligned with anti-white progressives but do not think of themselves as such, are usually all in favor of organizations like the Southern Poverty Law Center or the Anti-Defamation League, two overtly anti-white organizations that have recently found themselves in hot water for getting a little too zealous in their defense of religious and ethnic minorities. They don’t want dialogue; dialogue implies a back and forth, a willingness to grant that the other side may be right about something. What they want is victory and political power. If that can be accomplished with verbal demolition disguised as “dialogue,” so much the easier. It saves the loss of perceived moral high ground often aroused through more nefarious tactics.

The first realization is that Civil War is on the horizon, and this is an important recognition that more and more Americans are waking up to. But the second, more profound realization is that Civil War is already here. Everything described above has already begun happening in many circles, and the fact that it hasn’t engulfed our lives and nation absolutely is no more proof of there not being a war than the containment of other military conflicts to certain battlefields denies them their status as “real wars.” We are living in a Cold War with proxy actors and conflicts playing out in a variety of fields, from the classroom to the courtroom, from the senate to the streets. The question is only where things will heat up, and how much*.

That this war does not conform to many people’s expectations about what war will be like makes it no less real. The unwillingness to call it a “war,” however, makes us potentially more vulnerable. Like the hapless citizens of Antelope, OR, it is better to be able to recognize the invasion going on around you, rather than to realize what happened only in hindsight. That kind of thinking leaves survival up to luck and the skill of your enemy, and eventually, you will lose that game.

*(I will consider this whole post falsified if things do not heat up more than they already are)

This Post Has 11 Comments

  1. “The Left’s investment in minorities united by their opposition to whites means that more immigration will lead to a permanent victory for the Left. If the Right manages to stem the flow of immigration, or reverse it, then it will win a permanent victory over the progressive Left.”-I think this is possibly an oversimplification and false dichotomy.

    Most Asians and Hispanics highly value faith, small business, and traditional family values. In other words, traditional conservative values. They simply tend to vote Democrat because the Left very aggressively markets to them while the Right is almost completely silent.

    If the Right could successfully market that obvious connection, the tide would turn very quickly and quite reasonably lead to permanent victory.

    1. I think you misunderstood the argument. Let me try to frame it in a different way for you.

      Everyone is a conservative in their desired state, and a liberal when not (i.e., they are pursuing a vision other than the status quo). That some group may share values with yours does not mean that they are on the same team, because their faith is not your faith, their culture that they wish to conserve is not your culture, and their family is very much not your family. Religiosity, conservatism, and family values is as much an indicator of being on the same side as “talent” is of being a good team-mate in a soccer game; they may be a good player, but that’s a bad thing, not a good thing, if they’re on the other side.

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