As Steyn notes, it’s a sad distinction.
The “Free World” the Leader purports to lead is increasingly like that, don’t you find? Stumbling around, unsure what it’s doing or why it’s here. In the years immediately after the Great War, “remembrance” was easy – because they were your sons, husbands, fathers, fiancés, and they’re not around. Then the decades roll by, and for newer generations, even though you never met those you’re “remembering”, they’re still your great-uncles or great-grandfathers, and thus part of the bond that connects you to your country and its inheritance.
And then a few more decades drift on and now we’re all multicultural, and diversity is our strength, and a nation is no more or less than whoever happens to be standing around in it, like Gate 87 at Heathrow or LAX. And the bond is non-existent – because the Glorious Dead are not your kith and kin – and, even if they were, you’ve been taught since kindergarten that they were irredeemably racist and colonialist.
Yet it is surely significant, after a month in which stooped, aged Royal British Legion poppy-sellers have been bullied and shoved away from their traditional street corners and railway stations, that this hideous, treacherous constabulary could not bring itself to show any kind of solidarity with the old soldiers.
And even the Met’s official evenhandedness – of trying to ensure that both the Royal British Legion and Hamas get to share the public space – is taking a side, is it not? Because it enables Islam to achieve its aim – of appropriating one of the most solemn days in the national calendar for its own purposes. Islamic supremacism does nothing by accident: the end of the Great War was also the end of the Caliphate and the dawn of a fractured Middle East under the French and the British, who promptly put a Jew in charge of their “Palestine” mandate.
Whether hijacking Armistice Day should be legal or illegal, it would not, in a healthy polity, be considered seemly. That’s why I always quote the otherwise wholly forgotten Lord Moulton, Director-General of the Explosives Department during the First World War, and his observation that the health of a society is determined not by what is permitted or prevented by law but by what is self-regulated by the citizenry in “the realm of manners”. In the realm of manners, the citizenry don’t need a law forbidding competing groups from swamping and desecrating Armistice Day because you couldn’t find enough people willing to do anything so obviously inappropriate. But multiculti diversity rots out the realm of manners – because the population no longer has enough in common to sustain social cohesion and so you need an ever bigger and more powerful state to mediate the competing interests of different identity groups.
And, of course, these groups are not static. Some are in decline, some are in the ascendant. What happened this weekend is not so very difficult to figure out. As some “niche Canadian” wrote almost two decades ago, the future belongs to those who show up. Well, on the streets of London, the future showed up.
It did at that, among all too many other places. Quelle surprise, that it turned out to look even bleaker, darker, and more dismal than even the worst pessimist among us feared it might.