Albert Camus’ novel, The Plague, and Jean Raspail’s The Camp of the Saints seem to have wildly opposed themes: human solidarity in the former versus pathological altruism in the latter. There are striking similarities, however, between them. Both novels feature dual-threat scenarios: external threats combined with inner moral complicity. Both were prompted by large-scale disasters: in The Plague, World War II and the German occupation of France; in The Camp of the Saints, mass migration to Europe. Camus wrote in retrospect, Raspail in prophetic dread. In keeping with dystopian works such as Brave New World, Darkness at Noon, and Nineteen Eighty-Four, The Plague and The Camp issue warnings. Both works identify evil that lies coiled within human nature as the main enemy and threat: the plague is within us. The novels differ in their conceptions of that internal form of plague. For Camus, plague is indifference to human suffering; for Raspail, it is Europeans’ weakened inner defenses.
This essay will develop the plague metaphor and determine whether the novels’ themes might be compatible after all. The Plague and The Camp speak to our political predicament. Their viewpoints, or variants thereof, represent those held by combatants engaged in a mostly cold cultural and political war that shows no signs of abatement or peaceful resolution.But see Anti-Trump Hate Map and Hate Hoax Map at American Renaissance: www.amren.com. This conflict came to the fore with Brexit and the election of Donald Trump. What if our chances of reconciling these two novels approximate those of resolving our political differences?
A number of nonfictions deal with the same subjects. Camus himself wrote companion books of essays for his most influential novels, The Stranger and The Plague: The Myth of Sisyphus and The Rebel, respectively. Works that reinforce the preoccupations of The Camp include Douglas Murray’s The Strange Death of Europe: Immigration, Identity, Islam; Peter Brimelow’s Alien Nation: Common Sense about America’s Immigration Disaster; and Ann Coulter’s ¡Adios, America!: The Left’s Plan to Turn Our Country into a Third World Hellhole. If Raspail is right, such titles bespeak the pathetic downfall of European civilization that we have been witnessing: a Camp-of-the-Saints scenario unfolding in slow motion.
The Plague, like The Stranger, is set in French Algeria, in the prosperous but featureless city of Oran. Although Oran is a seaside town, it does not open to the water. According to the narrator, Dr. Rieux, its most prominent feature is ugliness. Oran would not likely inspire a coffee table book. The business of Oran is business, its pace of life routine. But life anywhere has a certain monotony; such ennui forms the very texture of The Stranger. There is precious little, however, to offset the boredom in Oran. Life isn’t bad there, though. People make enough money to go out evenings and they spend occasional days off at the beach.
The crisis begins when a rat staggers down a hallway, pirouettes and dies, to a resident’s disgust. As the sight of dead and dying rats increases the matter is brought to the attention of Dr. Rieux who, in turn, alerts the mayor and director of public health. These authorities downplay the situation and warn against frightening the public. They seem more afraid of identifying the disease than the disease itself. The situation resembles the one in JawsJaws. Directed by Stephen Spielberg. Hollywood, CA: Universal Pictures, 1975. when the mayor of Amity refuses to close the beaches after a deadly shark attack for fear of scaring off tourists. The exasperated shark expert says the mayor wouldn’t know a Great White if one bit him on the ass. Here we see one typical response to disaster: denial born of venality. Those in charge had rather cloak a threat than meet it.
As people become sick and die, the disease is confirmed as bubonic plague. Nothing to do now but quarantine the city. Some residents flee or attempt to do so, unconcerned about the risk they pose. The narrator stresses the state of exile of those who remain, their estrangement in the once familiar place they called home. There are no consolations; letters exchanged with loved ones on the outside, initially full of news, hope or passion, turn cliché with the passage of time. There isn’t much to say; life goes drearily on and no one knows how long the epidemic will last. Sweet memories become a torment. As the plague cuts a swath through town, district by district, we are presented with grisly scenes of its ravages. The pace of the novel is slow, like the tedium of life in “occupied” Oran.
Although human weakness is on display, the novel treats neither the townspeople nor officials as villains. Oran is no Hadleyville in High Noon.High Noon. Directed by Fred Zinnemann. Hollywood, CA: United Artists, 1952. The novel is not misanthropic, despite some characters’ shortcomings and foibles. A municipal employee, Grand, spends the entire novel working to perfect the “first” (read: only) sentence of a novel he is writing. He imagines the publisher’s response upon receiving it: “Hats off, gentlemen, hats off!” Even the sneaky Cottard, who profiteers on the black market, inspires more amusement than contempt (compare Harry Lime in The Third ManThe Third Man. Directed by Carol Reed. London, England: London Film Productions, Ltd., 1948.). Cottard, wanted for an unnamed offense committed elsewhere, evades detection during the crisis. On the whole, the narrator states, there is more to admire in people than despise.
One character does seem tainted with a plague-like moral condition: the fire-and-brimstone priest, Father Paneloux. The moral center of the novel concerns the death of a child. The novel graphically charts the final stages of plague over the course of a night as the doctor, parents, and priest helplessly stand vigil. Early in the epidemic, during his Week of Prayer, Father Paneloux blamed his congregation for the outbreak: “Calamity has come on you, my brethren, and, my brethren, you deserved it.”Albert Camus, The Plague (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1948), Stuart Gilbert, trans., 81. Their only recourse is to repent for their sins.
After the boy dies Dr. Rieux follows Father Paneloux outside and lets him have it for his sermon, which, in effect, justifies the death of an innocent child. For Rieux, there is no scourge of sin, original or otherwise. The sanctimonious priest promotes an ideology that blames innocent victims.
The “telling-off” scene is reminiscent of one in The Stranger. The protagonist Mersault lambasts the chaplain who comes to his cell to offer consolation and save his soul. Mersault uncharacteristically loses his temper, grabs the priest by the collar, and unleashes a tirade about the priest’s life-slandering views. Mersault remarks, “He seemed so cocksure, you see. And yet none of his certainties were worth one strand of a woman’s hair.”Albert Camus, The Stranger (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1946), Stuart Gilbert, trans., 151.
The Stranger and The Plague criticize “abstractions.” Mersault cannot understand “love” or “guilt.” The goal of an authentic life, Camus argues in The Myth of Sisyphus, is to live “without appeal” or illusions—to refuse, as Mersault did, to lie. In The Plague, Rieux and Rambert make sure they don’t become ensnared by abstractions; their resolute stand against the plague arises solely from a sense of decency. For Rieux, “[I]t’s a matter of common decency” to remain and fight, to risk oneself for the sake of others.The Plague, 137. Rambert, a visiting journalist trapped in town, misses his wife and arranges an escape. Rieux declines to blame anyone who opts for happiness. But Rambert has a change of heart; he remains and joins the sanitation squads. It seems we don’t need ethical theory to discover the right thing to do; one “just knows.” In this respect Dr. Rieux resembles the beleaguered hero, Marshal Will Kane, in High Noon.
The malefactors in The Plague, though mild and few, receive their comeuppances. Father Paneloux contracts plague, refusing medical assistance to the end. He maintained his “strict logic,” insisting that “[I]t’s illogical for a priest to call in a physician.”The Plague, 198. Cottard, found out at last, is dragged off screaming by the police.
The novel’s famous closing paragraph secures the plague’s status as metaphor. It deserves quoting in full:
And, indeed, as he listened to the cries of joy rising from the town, Rieux remembered that such joy is always imperiled. He knew what those jubilant crowds did not know but could have learned from books: that the plague bacillus never dies or disappears for good; that it can lie dormant for years and years in furniture and linen-chests; that it bides its time in bedrooms, cellars, trunks, and bookshelves; and that perhaps the day would come when, for the bane and the enlightenment of men, it would rouse up its rats again and send them forth to die in a happy city.The Plague, 269.
The Plague and The Rebel mark a turn from Camus’ nihilistic early period to one of solidarity. In The Rebel Camus argues that all nonhuman absolutes justify murder. These include God and the notion of history in classical Marxism (hence, his break with Sartre). Camus advocates this credo for his solidarity-ethic: “I rebel—therefore we exist.”Albert Camus, The Rebel (New York: Vintage Books, 1956), Anthony Bower, trans., 22. Camus has in this formula tried to subvert the solipsism of Descartes’ cogito: “I think; therefore, I am.” That solipsism applies to The Stranger: Mersault appears to have little emotional connection to others, even his own mother. He seems locked inside his own consciousness. Camus’ inference provides a bridge from self to others. Compare this snatch of dialogue from The Plague. Tarrou: “Who taught you all this, doctor?” Rieux: “Suffering.”The Plague, 112. The Rebel’s appeal to solidarity invites comparison to Stoicism. Stoicism stresses universal brotherhood and citizenship, based on a common human nature and capacity for suffering, in the cosmopolis or universal political order. For the Stoics, nature supersedes convention. That which is permanent and universal in human nature establishes our identity and political membership, not particularities such as country, tribe, language, or religion.
Camus varied his position in the short story “The Artist at Work.” A painter after long seclusion finally reveals his masterpiece: a canvas on which he has written a single ambiguous word, which could be read as either “Solitary” or “Solidary.”Albert Camus, “The Artist at Work” in Exile and the Kingdom (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1958), Justin O’Brien, trans. Thus, there is no final resolution to the problems of self or community, egoism or altruism. Any viable ethics must balance the two.
Camus received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1957, according to The Plague’s editor, for bringing to light “the problems of the human conscience in our time.”The Plague, Editor’s Preface, v. He continues: “France, and for that matter most of Europe, was sunk in a kind of nihilistic stupor that many American GIs found more depressing than the physical ruins of war.”The Plague, Preface, vii. The editor thus locates Camus’s concerns in the previous war-torn years. The novel’s translator, however, links plague to “racism, colonialism” and claims that we are all infected by it.Introduction, x. Yet he refers uncritically to Arab nationalism. (More on double standards later.)
The editor’s comments square with Raspail’s diagnosis of French attitudes in later years. But the translator’s comments show how Leftist “interpreters” seized upon Camus’s theme for their own purposes. Here we see the expression of an outlook that constitutes the internal plague in The Camp of the Saints. Europeans’ overwrought sense of guilt renders them defenseless against nonstandard forms of warfare. They are made to feel guilty over “racism,” a sin that can never be expiated except by committing civilizational suicide.
The Plague and The Rebel raise several questions. First, was Camus right to endorse universal solidarity, if indeed that was his view? Second, can a human absolute, “humanity,” or an abstraction such as “universal brotherhood” also justify murder? Third, suppose that in the name of humanity and universal brotherhood an entire civilization allows itself to be destroyed: is that fair and just? The Camp of the Saints, in effect, answers No, Yes, and No to those questions.
Plague as a metaphor for dual threats works well: unlike a menace such as a shark, disease is a condition of the person caused by pathogens from the environment. Plague thus straddles the internal/external distinction. But the plague metaphor is rich with interpretive possibilities. Either side, Left or Right, globalist or nationalist, can employ it to good effect.
The Camp of the Saints
While The Plague subtly implies a diseased moral condition, The Camp of the Saints endorses such a notion explicitly. The Camp is about a demographic plague that threatens Europe: an armada, 1,000,000 people strong and only the first wave, set sail from the Third World. The inner disease in The Camp is loss of a people’s identity and belief in itself. An outlook is associated with this disease: a “complex” of multiculturalism, egalitarianism, and pathological altruism. Some would call it cultural Marxism. This view constantly identifies new categories of victims and blames Europeans as the sole oppressors. The “priests” in The Camp wield a rigid orthodoxy of their own, which they use as a cudgel against anyone who balks at anti-European rhetoric. The minute someone questions “diversity” these defenders of the faith label them “racists and fascists” and thereby prevent discussion and stifle dissent. Does this sound familiar?
The dual aim of white Leftists and their nonwhite clients in The Camp is to promote racial diversity and suppress viewpoint diversity. The Leftists, with a religious fervor, charge others with racism and support measures ruinous to their own people. But will their complicity as “allies” of nonwhites help their standing once the invasion begins? As in The Plague, the authorities in The Camp resist calling the threat by name.
The armada is quite a sight—and has quite a smell. It trails thousands of floating corpses in its wake: the remains of those who have died from starvation or disease. The galleys use human feces for cooking fuel, rolled by hand and dried by the sun, the wood supply having been exhausted in cremations. The fleet hails from India, the rusty freighters India Star and Calcutta Star leading hundreds of past-service commercial vessels.
Here is what is truly exasperating: the French pretend the armada’s arrival is inevitable, as if it were a meteor hurtling toward earth, whereas they could easily stop it. A failure of nerve stands in their way. Why will the French not act on their own behalf? Because of taboos against whites speaking out about their own interests. The whites in The Camp are allowed no collective interests or solidarity, whereas other groups loudly proclaim theirs. The Camp reveals the entrenched double standard: Raspail has tapped into the vein of antiwhite identity politics.
The farther in time we move from slavery, segregation, and colonialism, the more virulent the charges of “racism.” One wonders why so many people would wish to move to such wicked, racist countries. When no evidence exists, racism takes invisible forms: “institutional racism” and “white privilege.” The secular religion of egalitarianism allows no other explanation for nonwhites’ failures. Thus, innocent people—like Father Paneloux’s congregation—are blamed. In the end, The Camp argues, after its centuries of alleged oppression Western civilization ends by succumbing to flimsy moral arguments. It dies with a whimper.
The Belgian Consul in Calcutta tried to stop the armada from sailing. The narrator’s gloss on the event bears an uncanny resemblance to Camus’s aforementioned short story, “The Artist at Work.” The Consul, having made fruitless pleas to a local official, went down to the docks with his “army,” a Sikh guard, to oppose the boarding of the Calcutta Star. Ordered to “Fire!” the guard tossed the Consul his rifle and ran. The Consul fired one shot before he was beaten to death. “In its outward appearance, at least, the Consul’s heroic gesture was something of a prototype after the fact [of the decline of the Western powers] … as perfect and pure as the final creation of some terribly famous artist, who paints a single line on his canvas, or dabs one dot, and calls it his crowning achievement.”Jean Raspail, The Camp of the Saints (Petosky, MI: The Social Contract Press, 2018), Norman Shapiro, trans., 46. The Consul’s act was futile, but he was no coward.
Australia and South Africa turned the flotilla away with mere words. A shot fired across the bow by an Egyptian torpedo boat induced the captain to change course. The Middle Eastern countries—like Saudi Arabia today—do not want the migrants either. Fewer people would die in the long run if the French Navy were to sink a ship. The Western world would be spared. But this will not happen because of the good work of the sophists and priests of the Left.
Among these are partisan media personalities—the Rachel Maddows and Don Lemons!—and celebrities who trumpet their support for the migrants. Then there are race hustlers of the Al Sharpton school. Clémont Dio (Ben Suad) typifies the prima-donna reporter and purveyor of political correctness. After children contract gonorrhea from swimming at a public pool frequented by infected Arabs, city officials required Arabs to show medical papers if they wished to swim. Dio ran a story with the headline, “Anti-Arab Racism Alive and Well!”
Dio’s headline could easily appear in today’s Washington Post or New York Times, the operative word, “Islamophobia.” In the runup to the 2016 election, Hillary Clinton’s initial response to an act of terrorism was to rebuke anyone who might think of blaming Muslims or Islam, not to decry the heinous act itself. In our “film,” the expert would tell Clinton that she wouldn’t know a terrorist if one grabbed her by the pantsuit. She labeled Americans who opposed Muslim immigration “deplorables.” Of course, Clinton’s attitudes had nothing to do with her election loss: that was the work of space aliens.
Constantly telling nonwhites that racism is to blame for all their problems encourages them to hate whites. This would help explain the glaring disparity in inter-racial crime statistics.See Edwin S. Rubenstein, The Color of Crime: Race, Crime, and Justice in America (Oakton, VA: New Century Foundation), 2016 revised ed. In black-on-white crimes blacks were the perpetrators 85% of the time. We see the results of this hatred in The Camp once the invasion starts: black workers at one slaughterhouse murder a white foreman and send his body down the production line, to end up in a can of pâté. The nonwhites assume that with the disappearance of white majorities and white norms harmony and justice will ensue.
As officials bloviate, the armada makes its shaky but inexorable progress. Human rights committees convene, Ganges support organizations form. Much ado, but no action. Compare Iris’ words in The Iliad as the Achaean armies advance on Troy: “Old Priam, / words, endless words—that is your passion, always, / as once in the days of peace. But ceaseless war’s upon us!”Homer, Iliad (New York: Penguin Books, 1990), Book 2: sec. 900. Robert Eagle, trans., Bernard Knox, ed.
Government spokesmen hold press conferences. At one, Dio speaks: “[M]ay I ask if the government has any plans to ease the plight of these poor, suffering souls? It’s reaching a point where we can’t sit idly by ….”Raspail, 72. His question assumes what should be proven, that the government should help the migrants. The narrator remarks on such tactics: “[t]hey aim for the head. Those remote lobes of the brain where remorse, self-reproach, and self-hate, pricked by thousands of barbs, come bursting out, spreading their leukemia cells through a once healthy body.”Raspail, 92. Here we find the disease metaphor vividly stated.
At another presser the skeptical newspaper publisher, Machefer, challenges the government spokesman, human rights crusader Jean Orelle, to explain how the government plans to repel the armada. Dio knew, when he “launched the debate on a lofty, altruistic note, that any other point of view would be seen as revolting.”Raspail, 75. Dissenting views were overruled on the spot. The Arab appeals to a universal ethic when dealing with Europeans while he subscribes to a tribal one. The French are thus playing a rigged game.
Orelle states that Machefer’s question “is revolting! Do you ask a drowning man where he was going and why, before you pull him out of the water? Do you throw him back in if, assuming the worst, he admits he was swimming to your private residence to break into your cottage?”Raspail, 76. Machefer replies that you hand him over to the police; but with a million such people there won’t be enough police to do the job. Touché! Machefer has refuted Orelle’s analogy. Of course, his good point has no effect. The moral imperative to promote “diversity” trumps all else.
Why think the migrants weren’t peaceful? The Belgian Consul’s death was widely publicized. The South Africans intercepted the armada and delivered vast medical and food supplies. As they sailed away the migrants formed lines and threw the cargo overboard. The message should have been clear. European papers were awash in fake news: “Was Poison Their Real Motive?”; “Blackmail in Human Despair”; “Charity South African Style: A Slap in the Face.”Raspail, 131. A delegation that included the World Council of Churches, the Pope (a Brazilian), the Red Cross, the Knights of Malta, high-profile celebrities, and pop music groups attempted a new mission. Delegation barges sailed out to meet the armada, but the ships had no intention of stopping. The India Star tried to ram a French barge. When the papal barge pulled alongside the Calcutta Star that ship dumped the murdered cadaver of a once-famous white Buddhist writer onto the barge’s deck. News of the murder was never made public.
As the armada approaches France, the President decides to meet the invasion with force. Then he does an about-face in his address to the nation. He cannot bring himself to order his troops to shoot. The French government will welcome the migrants. Meanwhile Colonel Degrasès, already dispatched, marches toward the sea. His army suffers mass desertion. The nonwhite soldiers celebrate the invasion. The white soldiers are split: some are cowards while others sympathize with the migrants. Supporters pour from the north of the country. At the same time, an exodus of Frenchmen from the south clogs highways heading north. The Camp uncannily predicts what occurred during the 2015 migrant arrival in Germany. Douglas Murray writes: “At the borders and at the train stations like Munich and Frankfurt crowds of hundreds of people gathered to welcome the arriving migrants … Here were crowds of Germans not merely offering assistance to the migrants as they arrived, but giving them what often looked like a welcome party.”Douglas Murray, The Strange Death of Europe: Immigration, Identity, Islam (London: Bloomsbury Publishing, 2018), 160.
Until this point in the novel, the one thing Raspail gets wrong about the future is the peaceful character of Leftist protest. For example, he describes orderly rallies in DC. Even Raspail did not foresee the violent tactics of groups such as Antifa in the “Age of Trump.” Even so, peaceful protest soon gives way to armed conflict.
Among the well-wishers rushing southward is Panama Ranger, a 1960s-type anarchist who wants to bring down the system, and his band of followers, the “Rhodio-Chemical People’s Strike Force.” They acquire Army deserters and party on supplies left behind by Frenchmen. Ranger celebrates “the revolution” and wishes to embrace the migrants as his brothers, naïvely assuming they will reciprocate his sentiments. He calls those who oppose him “fascists” and the police “pigs.”
Ranger enjoys the support of media figures. Along the road he meets with Dio. Ranger points to his group’s “Last Will and Testament”—a banner they’ve spread across a toll gate:
“WORKERS, SOLDIERS, GANGES REFUGEES
UNITED AGAINST OPPRESSION”
Dio exclaims, “Beautiful!”Raspail, 180. Shortly thereafter Col. Dragasès’ tanks arrive and blast the toll gate to bits.
The Camp opens with a jarring episode on the eve of the invasion. We find a retired professor of French literature, Monsieur Calgués, who has decided to remain, enjoying a beautiful day at his ancestral home in southern France. His home is located atop a rocky slope overlooking the sea. He sits on a covered terrace gazing at the fleet through his telescope. He has seen this day coming for a long time.
Suddenly a barefoot young man climbs the steps to Calgués’ house. The young man is overjoyed by the flotilla’s arrival. He says the migrants are his real family. France is finished, its days of privilege over. The country will now take in the oppressed and needy of the world; the old man’s home, too, will go to the migrants. “Twenty generations without a conscience, without a heart. What a family tree! And now here you are, the last, perfect branch. Because you are, you’re perfect. And that’s why I hate you. That’s why I’m going to bring them here, tomorrow. The grubbiest ones in the bunch. Here, to your house.”Raspail, 11. The migrants will use Calgués’ fancy things then burn down his house. He orders Calgués to clear out. Calgués tries to reason with him, to no avail. Calgués says there’s no point in staying and asks the man to wait a minute while he gets his hat. Calgués returns carrying a shotgun. “What are you going to do with that?” “I’m going to kill you, of course!”Raspail, 11-12. After making a little speech of his own, Calgués shoots him. Afterward, he prepared a sumptuous meal, something of a Last Supper. As he sipped wine and listened to the radio by candlelight—the power having gone off hours earlier—he beheld his cherished belongings: books, linens folded in the linen-chest, left by his mother, furniture, etc. (places where the plague bacillus had evidently dwelled, as per Camus). The radio alternates between Mozart’s Eine kleine Nachtmusik and status reports on the President’s speech. After much bluster, the President announces the landing will not be opposed.
Meanwhile Col. Degrasès, accompanied by a handful of loyalists, advances. Degrasès lost his tanks to Ranger’s Molotov cocktails. On the beach, Degrasès and his men cremated bodies of migrants washed ashore, then made their way up to “The Village.” Calgués welcomes them with a feast he prepared in their honor. The men spend their final day shooting migrants and French turncoats then celebrate in style. The French government sends in an air strike, not to support Col. Degrasès’ operation, but to kill the “racists,” that is, the patriots. The planes bomb their position atop the hill, killing all.
We glimpse the new regime. “All that was missing were the black crosses that, in ages past, marked out the houses where the plague had struck.”Raspail, 280. French homes are forcibly integrated. Frenchmen and migrants worked out informal arrangements through bribery: half the house to people of color, the other side white. But the government cracked down and banned these “racist” practices. It couldn’t outlaw discrimination in public only to permit it in private. Migrants debate whether or not they will accept assistance from the defeated enemy and set up a multiracial state.
Equality had finally triumphed. Western civilization had come to an end: “The thousand years are over” went the refrain of a migrant song. Elites would now have to live with the consequences of policies they formerly visited on others. An academic in Manhattan sipped scotch as the tide of migrants rose, floor by floor, in his building. The multicultural “utopia” signaled not the destruction of the West, but “the world reborn.” Douglas Murray identifies our two forms of plague, the external and internal, as the chief reasons for Europe’s fall: mass immigration and Europe’s loss of confidence in itself.Murray, 2.
What a film this novel would make. Think of the images. Open with Calgués’ lovely deserted village. Cut to the rusty armada seen through the lens of his telescope—its closeness—darkening the Côte d’Azur. Cross-bearing monks on the beach are swamped by the tide of migrants: an image that could leap off a Dalí canvas. Who would play Panama Ranger? This film could gross $1 billion. What are the chances Hollywood would make it?
Are The Plague and The Camp’s themes compatible? There is reason to think so. Solidarity among the French is precisely what is missing in The Camp. Most people have stronger attachments to their own group than to others.See J. Phillippe Rushton, “Genetic Similarity Theory, Ethnocentrism, and Group Selection” in Indoctrinability, Warfare, and Ideology: Evolutionary Perspectives (Oxford: Berghahn Books, 1998), I. Eibl-Eibesfeldt and F. K. Salter, eds., 369-388. The Camp’s narrator: “Man never has really loved humanity all of a piece—all its races, its peoples, its religions—but only those creatures he feels are his kin, a part of his clan, no matter how vast.”Raspail, 7. From The Camp’s perspective, there is nothing irrational about in-group preference; what is irrational is to lose it. After all, in The Plague, those who joined Dr. Rieux were fellow Frenchmen. To see a chilling documentary-style film about what happened between Algerians and Frenchmen, watch The Battle of Algiers.The Battle of Algiers. Directed by Gillo Pontecorvo. Italy: Stella Productions; production, Igor Film, 1966.
Elevating solidarity to a universal desideratum is folly. The bonds that bind us are mostly natural, innate, the result of genetic kinship. So the Stoics, in extoling nature over convention, should recognize this fact too. But cultural particularities such as religion, language, and history also matter, since they sometimes separate genetically close ethnic groups: Irish and English, Czechs and Slovaks, Serbs, Croats and Slovenians, etc. The absolutes and abstractions that The Stranger and The Plague deride make their appearance in The Camp as empty appeals to humanity and universal brotherhood. The morality from The Plague has been stood on its head and turned into pathological altruism: the practice of promoting those who undermine one’s own interests. A virtue has become a vice. Calgués thought to himself, as he watched a young soldier turn and run, that the traditional pride in his own people was wholly absent in him: “[t]he monstrous cancer implanted in the Western conscience had quashed it in no time at all.”Raspail, 7.
Europeans have unilaterally disarmed, while others have developed an intense and belligerent racial consciousness. Speaking of the common man, The Camp’s narrator says: “They’ve gelded his will of the instinct of self-preservation.”Raspail, 86. The result is: “In this curious war taking shape, those who loved themselves best were the ones who would triumph.”Raspail, 7. Europeans fear being called racists more than they do rape and murder. Officials crack down on those who sound the alarm rather than addressing the threat itself. What a strange lot to befall a brilliant and heroic people. Murray writes that Europe is finally lost, since it “has little desire to reproduce itself, fight for itself or even take its own side in an argument.”Murray, 2. He pronounces Europe’s condition as terminal.
Where does The Camp leave cosmopolitanism?For a critique of cosmopolitanism see Greg Johnson, “What’s Wrong with Cosmopolitanism?” in his book, In Defense of Prejudice (San Francisco: Counter-Currents Publishing Ltd., 2017), 143-153. We should reject the following in that view. (1) Universal human nature: the world is populated by distinct peoples that have different natures and interests. (2) “No borders”: no one feels equally at home everywhere. Borders allow space where distinct peoples can fulfill their destinies. (3) Radical egalitarianism: races are not equal.For a thorough review and interpretation of the scientific literature on racial differences see Michael E. Levin, Why Race Matters: Race Differences and What They Mean (Westport, Conn.: Praeger, 1997). They have different capacities and they build different societies. What remains? First, an egalitarianism of advocacy: all peoples have a right to advocate for their legitimate interests. Second, common interests: everyone has an interest in certain things, for example, preserving the integrity of the natural environment.
Whites face a demographic plague that is reducing them to minorities in countries their ancestors founded and built. They have been led to think they are not a distinct racial group with collective interests having the same right as others to advocate for their legitimate interests. One of those interests is to remain majorities in their own countries. Europeans are not replaceable: no one else can carry their culture and institutions forward. Murray despairs: Europe is committing suicide and “neither Britain nor any other Western European country can avoid that fate because we all appear to suffer from the same symptoms and maladies.”Murray, 1.
Murray notes an exception: Eastern Europe. Countries there have developed a resistance to plague. Murray thinks that part of the explanation is that Eastern Europeans have retained their tragic sense of life (a most unprogressive notion). Yet he fails to appreciate that citizens in plague-stricken countries everywhere are waking up from their nihilistic stupor. Many people have been taught by suffering—and their numbers are on the rise. The death of Europe is not inevitable.
Doctors with Borders?
An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. The most effective measure at the disposal of today’s Dr. Rieuxs who wish to prevent demographic plague is strong borders. Solidarity with one’s own people inoculates against moral plague. Fellow feeling protects against toxic rhetoric that poisons a people’s self-confidence.
What is needed in this struggle, therefore, are doctors with borders. Doctors should remain free to cross borders and engage in humanitarian missions—but not to bring infected persons home. After all, one must have a healthy country before one can venture forth to help others. Flight attendants instruct passengers that, in the event of pressure loss, they should fix their own oxygen masks first. Likewise, doctors should address disease conditions at home. Sanitary measures should be taken against “sanctuary cities” that breed crime, filth and disease, undermine the rule of law, and consign their citizens to exile.
Interestingly, Leftists believe that moral plague is an affliction of the Right. This is why they refuse to debate their opponents and instead seek to silence them. Greg Johnson writes that Leftists think those who advocate for whites do not present facts or arguments; they spew. And what they spew is hate. To stop the spread of this psychological virus, quarantine is necessary, i.e., censorship. Johnson turns the metaphor around:
It is increasingly clear that the establishment does not have the capacity to refute the intellectual case of the rising tide of populist nationalism …. Academia is the establishment’s intellectual immune system. Its function is to fend off the nationalist-populist virus, or the system will succumb. But the system has AIDS. Its immune system is gone. Hence the establishment retreat into the plastic bubble of censorship, brainwashing, paywalls, and general academic autism.Greg Johnson, “Bubble Boys,” accessed July 29, 2018, www.counter-currents.com.
Johnson has increased our stock of metaphors for intellectual insularity by adding “plastic bubble” to “ideological echo chamber,” the latter made famous by James Damore, formerly of Google. Damore dared question egalitarian orthodoxy’s assumption that the only explanation for unequal outcomes in the workplace was white male oppression and was fired as a result.James Damore, “Google’s Ideological Echo Chamber: How Bias Clouds Our Thinking about Diversity and Inclusion,” https://assets.documentcloud.org/documents/3914586/G...er.pdf , 2017. See also “GOOGLE Memo: Four Scientists Respond,” accessed August 7, 2017, http://quillette.com/2017/08/07google-memo-four-sci...spond/ . The Damore incident gave rise to the “Goolag” meme.
The plague, once again, has roused up its rats and sent them forth to die in happy cities. This time, if they succeed, they will never have to be summoned again. There will be no more happy cities to infect. While the plague can come from different directions, today it is borne on winds of the Left. Compare Raspail: “The Left is a conflagration. It devours and consumes in deadly dull earnest.”Raspail, 215. But wishing one’s own people to survive does not make one “Right-wing.”
Europeans, wherever they live, are undergoing dispossession and loss of homelands. As a consequence, oblivion looms on the horizon as surely as a million-person armada. Such a plight befalls no other peoples. No black, Hispanic, or Asian countries are admonished to practice diversity and become less of what they are. The direction of moral invective is the same as the flow of migration: from nonwhite to white countries.See Jared Taylor’s interview with Jorge Ramos, accessed August 22, 2018, YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2f8q71hzd_Q
We should fight common threats to human welfare: that is the perspective of The Plague. Europeans must overcome taboos and insist on their own collective interests: that is the lesson of The Camp. On a trip to Europe in 2018, President Trump stated that European countries are losing their cultures because of mass immigration and they had better act soon. The goals of The Plague and The Camp can be realized by recognizing the right of all peoples to homelands.
Ways forward involve language, logic, and empathy. A good start to framing issues properly is to avoid emotive expressions. Then we can debate facts. Attorney General Jeff Sessions once instructed his staff to refrain from using the euphemism “undocumented workers” and instead use the accurate term, “illegal aliens.” Leftists will howl, “No human being is illegal!” That is an uncharitable attribution: no one is saying that human beings are illegal. But entry without permission is illegal, whether it is entry into a woman’s body or a nation. Likewise, since “diversity” means the reduction of whites, there is no reason for whites to celebrate it.
Sarah Jones writes: “Raspail’s enemy is the entire non-white world.”Sarah Jones, “The Notorious Book that Ties the Right to the Far Right,” accessed February 6, 2018, https://newrepublic.com/article/146925/notorious-boo...-right . Here is another egregious violation of the principle of charity. Raspail opposes the destruction of the white world. Love of one’s own does not entail hatred of others. A 2017 18-country Ipsos-Mori survey revealed crucial information about political differences.Eric Kaufmann, “Is Tribalism Racist? Antiracism Norms and Immigration,” accessed January 23, 2018, http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/politicsandpolicy/antiracism...ration . Most liberals drew no distinction between racial self-interest and racism: wishing to limit immigration to protect the integrity of one’s own group was for them racist. In contrast, majorities in all countries surveyed saw nothing racist in wanting to maintain their own demographic share. These attitudes reflected voting trends.
Empathy requires that we acknowledge others’ points of view. To treat others as persons, we must take account of what philosopher Charles Taylor calls their “self-ascriptions.”See my discussion of Taylor in “Social Science and the Verstehen Thesis” in From Kant to Weber: Freedom and Culture in Classical German Social Thought (Melbourne, FL: Krieger Press, 1999), Thomas M. Powers and Paul Kamolnick, eds., 113-116. Thus, we should refer to others as they self-identify instead of, for example, branding them “white supremacists.” We should state others’ positions in ways they would accept, without distortion. Labeling does not advance dialogue or refute arguments. A statement is true or false, an argument valid or invalid, independent of facts about the person who makes it. Someone who has presented an argument has met the burden of proof. If others disagree, it is incumbent on them to show why the argument is unsound.
National policy must be built on a sound understanding of human nature, not wishful thinking. Humans are tribal: most prefer the company and culture of people like themselves.See Jared Taylor, White Identity: Racial Consciousness in the 21st Century (Oakton, VA: New Century Books, 2010). People overwhelmingly opt for the company of their own race whenever possible, as evidenced, for example, by church congregations and housing patterns. Forced diversity causes conflict in the workplace, schools, neighborhoods, and prisons. Trying to force everyone into the Procrustean bed of equality is doomed to failure; one size does not fit all. A people cannot be replaced by others and its culture and institutions survive. The replaceability of peoples is a perverse notion: a symptom of moral plague.
Solidarity is a good thing. But universal brotherhood and multiculturalism are utopian delusions. Dystopias result from misconceived utopian schemes. Diverse New World is one such dystopia. Diversity is not a strength at all, let alone our greatest strength.See Barbara Oakley, Pathological Altruism (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012). See also Jared Taylor’s application of the central concept to racial issues in his “Pathological Altruism,” in If We Do Nothing: Essays and Reviews from 25 Years of White Advocacy (Oakton, VA: New Century Foundation, 2017), 49-58. It is a source of tension and conflict. Throwing different peoples together without regard to civilizational differences is a prescription for disaster that no competent doctor would endorse. No one is satisfied; everyone lives in exile. Diversity has undermined trust.Robert Putnam, “E Pluribus Unum: Diversity and Community in the Twenty-first Century: The 2006 Johan Skytte Prize Lecture,” Scandinavian Political Studies, 30 (2007), 134-174, cited in Jared Taylor, “Diversity Destroys Trust,” in If We Do Nothing: Essays and Reviews from 25 Years of White Advocacy (Oakton, VA: New Century Books, 2017), 43-48. Not all divisions can be overcome by peace, love and understanding. Moreover, one ought not to make peace with the prospect of extinction, a threat that whites alone face.
Permitting all distinct peoples homelands allows for true diversity. Homogeneous homelands promote the harmony and trust that make human flourishing possible. Thus, there is a place for solidarity, within limits prescribed by nature, culture and common sense. Why should anyone think otherwise? In times of plague, the world needs more doctors and fewer priests. What is dystopic for the Left may, in our not-so-brave diverse new world, be a prescription for utopia.
David L. McNaron is Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
This article first appeared as a chapter in Utopia and Dystopia in the Age of Trump: Images from Literature and Visual Arts (Vancouver: Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 2018), Barbara Brodman and James E. Doan, eds. It is reprinted by permission of the editors at Fairleigh Dickinson University Press and Rowman & Littlefield Publishers. For ordering information on the book see the following web site: http://www.fdupress.org/?s=&cat=61.
 Jaws. Directed by Stephen Spielberg. Hollywood, CA: Universal Pictures, 1975.
 High Noon. Directed by Fred Zinnemann. Hollywood, CA: United Artists, 1952.
 The Third Man. Directed by Carol Reed. London, England: London Film Productions, Ltd., 1948.
 Albert Camus, The Plague (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1948), Stuart Gilbert, trans., 81.
 Albert Camus, The Stranger (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1946), Stuart Gilbert, trans., 151.
 The Plague, 137.
 The Plague, 198.
 The Plague, 269.
 Albert Camus, The Rebel (New York: Vintage Books, 1956), Anthony Bower, trans., 22.
 The Plague, 112.
 Albert Camus, “The Artist at Work” in Exile and the Kingdom (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1958), Justin O’Brien, trans.
 The Plague, Editor’s Preface, v.
 The Plague, Preface, vii.
 Introduction, x.
 Jean Raspail, The Camp of the Saints (Petosky, MI: The Social Contract Press, 2018), Norman Shapiro, trans., 46.
 See Edwin S. Rubenstein, The Color of Crime: Race, Crime, and Justice in America (Oakton, VA: New Century Foundation), 2016 revised ed. In black-on-white crimes blacks were the perpetrators 85% of the time.
 Homer, Iliad (New York: Penguin Books, 1990), Book 2: sec. 900. Robert Eagle, trans., Bernard Knox, ed.
 Raspail, 72.
 Raspail, 92.
 Raspail, 75.
 Raspail, 76.
 Raspail, 131.
 Douglas Murray, The Strange Death of Europe: Immigration, Identity, Islam (London: Bloomsbury Publishing, 2018), 160.
 Raspail, 180.
 Raspail, 11.
 Raspail, 11-12.
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 See J. Phillippe Rushton, “Genetic Similarity Theory, Ethnocentrism, and Group Selection” in Indoctrinability, Warfare, and Ideology: Evolutionary Perspectives (Oxford: Berghahn Books, 1998), I. Eibl-Eibesfeldt and F. K. Salter, eds., 369-388.
 Raspail, 7.
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 Raspail, 7.
 Raspail, 86.
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 Murray, 2.
 For a critique of cosmopolitanism see Greg Johnson, “What’s Wrong with Cosmopolitanism?” in his book, In Defense of Prejudice (San Francisco: Counter-Currents Publishing Ltd., 2017), 143-153.
 For a thorough review and interpretation of the scientific literature on racial differences see Michael E. Levin, Why Race Matters: Race Differences and What They Mean (Westport, Conn.: Praeger, 1997).
 Murray, 1.
 James Damore, “Google’s Ideological Echo Chamber: How Bias Clouds Our Thinking about Diversity and Inclusion,” https://assets.documentcloud.org/documents/3914586/Googles-Ideological-Echo-Chamber.pdf , 2017. See also “GOOGLE Memo: Four Scientists Respond,” accessed August 7, 2017, http://quillette.com/2017/08/07google-memo-four-scientists-respond/ . The Damore incident gave rise to the “Goolag” meme.
 Raspail, 215.
 Sarah Jones, “The Notorious Book that Ties the Right to the Far Right,” accessed February 6, 2018, https://newrepublic.com/article/146925/notorious-book-ties-right-far-right .
 Eric Kaufmann, “Is Tribalism Racist? Antiracism Norms and Immigration,” accessed January 23, 2018, http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/politicsandpolicy/antiracism-norms-and-immigration .
 See my discussion of Taylor in “Social Science and the Verstehen Thesis” in From Kant to Weber: Freedom and Culture in Classical German Social Thought (Melbourne, FL: Krieger Press, 1999), Thomas M. Powers and Paul Kamolnick, eds., 113-116.
 See Jared Taylor, White Identity: Racial Consciousness in the 21st Century (Oakton, VA: New Century Books, 2010). People overwhelmingly opt for the company of their own race whenever possible, as evidenced, for example, by church congregations and housing patterns. Forced diversity causes conflict in the workplace, schools, neighborhoods, and prisons.
 See Barbara Oakley, Pathological Altruism (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012). See also Jared Taylor’s application of the central concept to racial issues in his “Pathological Altruism,” in If We Do Nothing: Essays and Reviews from 25 Years of White Advocacy (Oakton, VA: New Century Foundation, 2017), 49-58.
 Robert Putnam, “E Pluribus Unum: Diversity and Community in the Twenty-first Century: The 2006 Johan Skytte Prize Lecture,” Scandinavian Political Studies, 30 (2007), 134-174, cited in Jared Taylor, “Diversity Destroys Trust,” in If We Do Nothing: Essays and Reviews from 25 Years of White Advocacy (Oakton, VA: New Century Books, 2017), 43-48.