Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Romans and Germans

Some notes about Ancient Rome.

We all know the “movement” dogma on Rome: originally a moral city state, founded by Dolph Lundgren look-a-likes, it became a morally corrupt, decadent, and degenerate Empire, as “racial mixing” destroyed the “original Nordic population” and repopulated the area with cringing swarthoid subhumans (i.e., modern Italians), to see the degenerate Empire crumble before the moral purity of those stalwart Germans.

Contra to “movement” dogma, it is difficult for normal people, informed historians, and the non-dogmatized educated, to consider the austere Christian Roman Empire of, say, Theodosius I (the last emperor of an undivided empire) as more “decadent” and “degenerate” than the early empire of the patrician emperors Nero and Caligula (Caligula!), or Tiberius, or of the later Republic of Catiline, Crassus, and Caesar, or the earlier Republic dictatorship of the bisexual Sulla (a favorite of William Pierce because of Sulla’s fair complexion - Pierce being nothing if not sophisticated in his historical tastes, Metrobius be damned [or sodomized]), or any of the earlier examples of corruption and rent-seeking avarice.

We can consider the 1942 classic The Roman Commonwealth by English historian Ralph Westwood Moore. With respect to the idea that Rome went from a virtuous city-state to a degenerate empire, Moore classified that as a “pious myth” and further stated: “Morality in the large sense was a thing which Rome achieved as she grew, not a Garden of Eden from which her destiny expelled her or a state of innocence from which she fell.”  Blasphemy!  That doesn’t accord with “movement” dogma so it must be wrong, wrong, wrong – or Moore was secretly Moori, a swarthoid with a Medish agenda!

And of course, there is Ferrill’s military explanation of the fall of Rome, which ironically enough, pins blame on the “barbarization” of the Roman military, as well as dubious strategic choices, as being primarily responsible, along with the obvious difficulty of maintaining such a far-flung empire for centuries against repeated assaults by determined and numerous foes.

Now, from an EGI standpoint, Rome would have been better off not building an empire and becoming a cosmopolitan city to begin with, but the storyline of moral degeneration and fall due to “racial admixture” is hogwash. 

In the battles between Romans and Germans (and Gauls) Der Movement of course historically sides with the latter against the former. There are a number of reasons for this: the typical Nord/Med divide (even though the original Romans are said to have been “Nordic”), that most activists are ethnically derived from stocks akin to Germans/Gauls rather than Romans, the whole dogma of a racially degenerate Empire trying to take the freedom aware from racially pure and noble Germanic “barbarians.” The Type I preference for barbarism over civilization, the knee-jerk Teutonophilia in all things.

We can ask though more objectively what’s going on there.

A more insightful pro-German view is to say that the existence of the Germans as an independent people is what was necessary for the creation of the Faustian Western High Culture after the Fall of Rome, that the Germans racially and morally revitalized a feeble and degenerate empire population, and that the racial integrity of Europe was endangered if Rome conquered Germania, since they would have populated those racially untouched regions with the degenerate cosmopolitan populations drawn from throughout the Empire.

Those arguments are not without merit, but they may be overblown. The Roman conquest of Gaul did not racially destroy the region, although a counter-argument is that France was later racially revitalized by settlement of Germanic peoples. Certainly, a non-ethnic fetishist view is that the demographic impact of Roman cosmopolitanism has been exaggerated.

Nevertheless, if we take seriously the argument that the future of the West as we know it was preserved trough the continued independence of the Germans, then we can reasonably view the Germanic victory of the Battle of Teutoburg Forest as being a positive outcome for the future of the West.  However, later military successes against the Germans in the early Empire period suggests that conquering and administering the region was considered negative from a cost/benefit ration; in other words, practical considerations, rather than the outcome of a single battle, is what led to the Rhine being set as the northeast boundary of the Empire.  Regardless of the reasons, again it can be stressed that the preservation of the Germans as an independent entity was important for the future development of the West.

But there is a difference between that and other battles.  In the earlier wars between Rome and the Germans, for example, the victories of Marius (and colleagues) in the Late Republic Period, it would take an extreme Germanocentric view to argue that the Germans were then on the side of the right, on the side of the West. This was not the case of peoples trying to preserve their freedom, but of barbarians attempting to conquer (and destroy) a civilization that was just them embarking on an imperialistic expansion.  The destruction of Rome at that point could well have short-circuited the progress of culture and civilization in Europe, lost to Europe the fruits of the Classical High Culture, and perhaps have prevented the West from ever coming into being.  It is perhaps not surprising that Der Movement typically forgets Roman-German warfare before Arminius.

What about later wars?  Was the destruction of the Western Roman Empire by the Germans good or bad?  If we take the traditional (and “movement”) view that the (later) empire was completely degenerate, then it was undoubtedly good; however, if we take the view, discussed above, that the later Western Empire was actually more morally sound than it ever was, then the question becomes more interesting.

Rather than frame it in the form of “good” vs. “bad” perhaps a counterfactual analysis would be useful.  What if the Roman Empire, the Western Empire, was able to act from a position of strength in the fourth and fifth centuries AD to reform the European situation to one of a power-sharing confederation mode? What if Rome has won the Battle of Adrianople, and had corrected certain deficiencies and regained some degree of vigor.  What if a wise Emperor had realized that maintenance of a far-flung centralized Empire was no longer feasible (note that the division into Western and Eastern halves was the beginning of this realization) and had reformed the Empire into a Confederation of Peoples – Romans, Germans, Gauls – with cooperation, considerable local autonomy and various common objectives (e.g., eastward expansion, defense against the Huns [Chalons as a crude example of what was possible], etc.).  That may have been unworkable given the attitudes of people of that time; on the other hand, the Gauls were Romanized after exhibiting such resistance centuries before; and, and, at this time, the Germans were no longer the same “barbarians” as in the past, some degree of “Romanization” had taken place, at least to an indirect degree. 

Rome could have at some point attempted to cut its losses, preserve itself as an independent "Mediterranean" power, and come to an accommodation with other European peoples.

Would that have hastened the development of the West, bypassing the Dark Ages?  Or would it have inhibited the development of the West by preserving the fossilized remnants of the Classical past its expiration date?  These are all interesting questions, ones that are never asked by a (itself fossilized) “movement” steeped in inflexible dogma.

That last point is the present relevance of this analysis.  Whether or not ancient historical events meant “this” or “that” are not directly issues of importance.  Getting the “movement” to break free of its blind adherence to fossilized dogma, and develop an increased flexibility of thinking – that is important.  And if at least questioning dogma on the ancient past – mere questioning, not necessarily even any profound change in opinion, but at least an honest consideration of the possibilities – can effect such increased flexibility, then such ruminations are all for the good.