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The War on the West: How to Prevail in the Age of Unreason

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And maybe it is all schools, but Murray can’t provide numbers so I suspect that they don’t support his assertions. But the “Judeo-Christian” element reveals a deeper truth—that the foundations of western culture are densely entwined with forms of Asiatic mysticism that emerged from the Middle East. Fortunately, Murray’s new book War on the West steers clear of the humourless gloom so typical of other “Spenglerian” works, which take as their theme the notion that Western culture is imperilled.

Indeed, he even compares Churchill to a religious figure, a moral figurehead for our age, rather than a two-time Prime Minister who accomplished something pretty big the first time, had an undoubtedly illustrious career but may have committed both good and bad across his many years. Around the same time, a statue of the slave trader Edward Colston was thrown in the River Avon by protestors—Murray alludes to the incident briefly as a starting point for statue-toppling in the UK. In The War on the West, Douglas Murray shows how many well-meaning people have been fooled by hypocritical and inconsistent anti-West rhetoric. Maybe that’s the best way of summing it all up: it’s very easy to fall back on “facts” when a corrupted system supports your viewpoints. It is, after all, possible to shoot someone without knowing they’re armed, or without them drawing the weapon; context is key.Again, it’s Murray just getting angry at people saying stupid things that anyone with a brain would just ignore. Their anti-western influence is spreading across religious, cultural and business institutions—even the National Trust—imbuing them with a crushing sense of guilt.

Douglas Murray breaks down “The War on the West” by showing how the basic tenents of America’s foundation have been eroded. If enough are convinced that Western history is nothing more than a catalogue of moral outrages and that Western societies remain irredeemably oppressive, tyrannical, bigoted, and all the rest of it, then what sense is there in preserving such a system? Which just goes to show how refined the practice of child abuse had become in the English schools of that benighted age. Many statues are unexamined and people know little about whom they represent, but if we were to examine them more closely we may find ourselves wishing to remove and replace them.Some of this is a much-needed reckoning; however, some is part of a larger international attack on reason, democracy, science, progress and the citizens of the West by dishonest scholars, hatemongers, hostile nations and human-rights abusers hoping to distract from their ongoing villainy. One quote from it is 'At 3 months, babies look more at faces that match the race of their caregivers'. One of the tweeters being a maths teacher, Murray warns of the risk that mathematical standards in education “will be lowered or expunged altogether” as a result of such ideas and reminds the reader of the obvious parallels to be found in “George Orwell’s most famous book. Especially when he uses it to bolster his more substantial point: that Americans had been primed to view the killing of George Floyd as representative of a wider injustice rather than as a one-off racist killing. Murray’s problem consistently is that he doesn’t seem to want to contextualise anything: you either accept the west as it is or you leave, there’s no inbetween.

Indeed, it’s something of a trend with this culture war commentary that evidence is anecdotal rather than statistical. The only cure for the warped and pathological view of justice that emerges from such resentment is gratitude. See also: “To delegitimise the west, it appears to be necessary first to demonise the people who still make up the racial majority in the west.Something of this persists in Murray’s critique, which implies that everyone who is drawn to left-wing identity politics is actuated by a lust for retribution, as opposed to a genuine desire to create a fairer society. He seems to think that we’re not allowed to talk about the ideas of Hume, JSM, Voltaire, Thomas Jefferson or a wealth of other characters, when this simply isn’t the case. Murray’s analysis of the situation at hand hits on many worthwhile points but his analysis is often shallow, and I believe willfully so. When critics claim that there is something sinister about their particular area of interest being too little known about, they forget that majorities of young people across the West have no serious knowledge even of one of the greatest crimes in history. On the other hand, while the defiant stance of his book necessitates a certain combativeness of tone, Murray seems at times to flirt with the notion that any criticism of Western society or foreign policy is an expression of a sinister, vengeful, anti-Western worldview.

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