What Future For 'Islamophobia' As Strategy And Tactics Now That America Has Changed Line?
Debates inside the Australian nationalist movement saw some people after 2006 adopt the line of 'Islamophobia' as strategy and as a tactic. Many things were said as parts of their argument. Let us recount the argument:
There is a clash of civilisations between Western Christendom and Islam, an extremist religion on an aggressive march. Islamists from without and within are challenging Australia. They are a recognisable threat and few Australians have any time for their extremism. Parts of the establishment in the West and obviously in Australia have been compelled to organise against Islamist terrorism. It is possible to use this by sheltering within establishment norms and thence gaining credibility for our critique of multiculturalism - and we can enter the mainstream. We can make alliances with Christian groups like the Christian Zionists and the Christian Democratic Party and acquire a larger following and further credibility. Importantly, by tilting in the direction that Israel is an ally in this clash of civilisations, we cannot be accused of neo-fascism or neo-nazism; the internal Zionist apparatus will see our position and allow us to operate free of this labelling and we will become a larger movement, as these sorts of labels are the only real things holding us out of the mainstream.
This line was most convenient for the type who espoused it. It avoided nasty confrontation with state and media forces.
There is little doubt that during the Bush - Howard period, Islamophobia as strategy and tactics had media resonance. In America, President Bush built an alliance of Christian fundamentalists, Christian Zionists, American civic patriots, business interests, the military and the Israel lobby into a potent machine. It had an aggressive ideological edge under the "neo-con" (neo-conservative) leadership. Similar forces operated in Australia. Our nationalist (sic) Islamophobes in Australia had something to work with.
Our Australian Islamophobes were happy to be a satellite of the dominant establishment forces. By that, we mean that they were happy to revolve around the establishment cultural-political norms and forces as a thoroughly dependable anti Islamic force.
Unfortunately for our Islamophobes, the American Century has become a shambles in the last few years. Contrary to many claims, the Iraq war has been a defeat and the Afghan war is shaping up as one. The foreign policy of the Washington regime has been skewed towards only Middle Eastern affairs; it now has to redress that imbalance. It is open to argue that during the Bush/Howard years, the Islamophobes were useful and were tolerated to a certain extent. Their willingness to embrace Israel as a "bulwark" against Islamism and the Zionist lobby as a non-enemy was undoubtedly - noticed. However, the utility of the arrangement depended upon the logic of the war on terror (sic) undertaken by the Washington regime.
Under the new President Obama, the regime has now changed course. If we could liken the two faces of the regime to images on a television screen, we would see the Bush alliance of a hard-capitalist power core and particular satellites fade out - and the new face of Obama and his constellation tone in. To extend the boundaries of the New World Order, the American regime today has opted for a liberal, as opposed to free market, crusading, face. That does not mean that the satellites of yesterday do not have uses; they do. Yet, they are not anymore the favoured tools.
The Washington regime, particularly given the glocbal economic crisis, will project a softer style. Its new internal coalition is one of ethnic minorities, the gay lobby, 1960's style liberal reformers, behind which stand the usual state agencies with friendlier faces. The Zionists morph from hard hawks of imperialist violence to liberals anxious to bring on a better world.
So, what can our Islamophobes do now? They cannot adopt much of this because it would fatally undermine the other side of their game. They have, after all, been posing as nationalists, which means they have talked of independence for Australia, ending immigration etc and have made noises about moral and related matters. Of course, they may continue the old story for a while, but it will increasingly lose power.
In the Australian history of satellite 'Right' organisations in the days of anti communism from the late 1970's , we saw groups then come out to lecture the system to stay "hard" and "focused" upon the Red enemy, even though the system had other ways - and very liberal ways - to deal with this enemy. They were useful, but no longer as important as they had been during the 1950's and 1960's, when there were sizeable, active, marxist forces in Australia. So with our anti Islamic activists. They can come out and bewail Moslem terror schools or Moslem rapists (the system will allow that), or the evil of extremist Islam etc., but they won't get much else succour. Indeed, if we take the liberalisation of the Christian Democrats as a sign (and this party is an utter satellite of the establishment), the state is tired of its calls to limit Moslem migration and its apocalyptic Bible defences of Israel. Too embarrassing!
So, we think that the Islamophobes are basically heading up a blind alley. In fact, we say they should never have gone there in the first place. These people have been highly disruptive in their search for the mainstream. How they repudiate their false position and retreat from it, will prove if any of them -have real honour at all.