The Elephant in the Room: Mass migration doesn’t work, history proves it

I have been waiting for other Christian leaders on Facebook and other public platforms to take the bull by the horns and address the elephant in the room. It’s the elephant no one wants to address because it is an elephant that tells us that so much of what we hold dear about western civilisation…

I have been waiting for other Christian leaders on Facebook and other public platforms to take the bull by the horns and address the elephant in the room. It’s the elephant no one wants to address because it is an elephant that tells us that so much of what we hold dear about western civilisation is a lie. But as these much more experienced and well-spoken leaders are refusing to address the elephant, I decided I would have to make my own attempt to not only point out the elephant but paint it bright pink and make it so unavoidably noticeable that people who refused to address would themselves look ridiculous. To do this we need to do a little tour through history.

In the mid-1400’s BC something phenomenal happened. A significant portion of a population living in Egypt migrated out of Egypt and made their way to their Promise Land. These people were the Hebrews, and according to the Bible they migrated out of Egypt and took 40 years to travel the wilderness and eventually settle in the Land of Canaan. Now for our purposes here we do not need to discuss why they wandered the wilderness, nor do we need to discuss who told them to leave Egypt, or why they left Egypt. All we need to note is this: what happened when a massive movement of possibly a couple of million people moved into a land already settled by other peoples? War! Clashes of cultures and war. In fact, several cities were completely destroyed, other cities were conquered and subjugated, and in other cases, Israelites settled next to and among the remaining people of the land of Canaan. What was the result of divergent cultures living in cross proximity because of mass migration? Clashes of cultures and war.

Indeed, for a couple of centuries or more the Israelites experienced a cycle of being subjugated, attacked and then liberated, all this happened on repeat. Divergent cultures living in close proximity did not get along, and though there were periods of peace, there were many more periods of war and cultural clashes. You don’t have to be a believer in God to know this is factually true because destruction layers in the ruins of Canaanite cities display this pattern of warfare and destruction among warring cultures. Mass migration led to the clash of cultures and to war.

1177 BC: The Year Civilisation Collapsed. This is the title of a brilliant book written by Eric H. Cline. It recounts the fascinating invasion of Egypt by the ‘Sea Peoples’. We don’t know exactly who the sea peoples were. It is believed they were at least partially made up of remnants of Mycenean Greek civilisation, including people from Crete and the civilisation we call Minoan, and perhaps including other people’s as well. After this migration, Egypt was never the same again, and other cities states fell into ruins. These sea people’s wreaked havoc on the ancient Bronze Age civilisation of the 12th century BC and were at least partially credited with the collapse of this multi-national civilisation that spanned much of the eastern Mediterranean sea. What we know for sure is that wherever these sea peoples found settled lands they clashed with the existing civilizations and war ensued. It’s even very likely that some of these sea peoples settled the land of Canaan and founded the Philistine city-states. You will not be surprised to find out that these Philistines made war with the Israelites who lived in the land of Canaan. Again, mass migration led to the clash of cultures and war.

A little bit later in history, we see a relatively young Roman Empire expanding across the Mediterranean and up further into Italy and setting its sights in all directions. In the late 2nd century BC a mass movement of Germans invaded Gaul, Italy and Hispania. This migrating mass of Germans clashed with many people’s in these lands, but particularly with the Roman legions. In fact, later on, Julius Caesar would use such invasions as a partial justification for annexing Gaul. This mass migration of peoples led to a clash of cultures and to war.

Fast forward to the fall of the Roman Empire and what do we find? We find again a mass migration of people. Between the 4th and 6th centuries a terrifying group called the Huns migrated from central Asia into western Europe. These terrifying Huns conquered everyone in their path and terrified the German people’s that were in the way of their migration. Many of the Germans fled from the Huns and were pushed into the borders of the Roman empire. This event is one of the significant moments in the fall of the great Roman empire that had stood for centuries as the dominant power in Europe, North Africa and Asia Minor. The Huns clashed with the Germans and then forced some of the Germans to seek refuge in Rome, and this mass migration of Germans clashed with the Romans, and this hastened the collapse of a declining empire. Again, the mass migration of peoples led to a clash of cultures and to war.

We could talk about so many other mass migrations. The movements of Scythians, which is likely actually several different, but similar, steppe tribes migrating over different periods of the time. The movements of Medes and Persians into Mesopotamia, the movements of the Aryans into India, the movements of the Parthians into Persia, the migration of Arab armies into Syria, Palestine, Anatolia, Egypt and eventually further up into Spain and other parts of Europe. The movements of the various steppe tribes, the Magyar’s, the Bulgars, the Turks, and eventually the most terrifying steppe tribe of all, the Mongols. We could talk about the mass migration of Zulu African tribes in South Africa, or the mass migration of European settlers into the Americas, and Australia and other parts of the world. All of these mass migrations of people have something in common, and yes you guessed it: the mass migration of peoples led to a clash of cultures and to war. Many, many, many more examples could be given.

Are you noticing a pattern? A very distinct pattern? It appears that throughout history low levels of migration work relatively well. For example, the small amount of Arab traders who lived on the outskirts of the Roman empire actually worked quite well with the peoples of the eastern Roman empire. But a mass migration of Arab armies out of the Arabian peninsula into the Byzantine Roman Empire nearly caused the collapse of the entire empire. When people move to a foreign society in small numbers they tend to integrate to a much higher degree, or at least they tend to function healthily in that foreign society. But when people move in mass migrations, or continuously increasing migrations, something else happens reliably every time: the clash of cultures and war.

For the last several decades, western nations have participated in the mass migration of peoples to their lands. For a while, the numbers were quite moderate, but more recently they have been increasing the uptake. Everyone is familiar with the mass immigration of people that the German Chancellor Angela Merkel allowed into her country, and indeed into all of the European Union. But down here in Australia, immigration rates have been kept very high for several decades now. Why do they do this? Two main reasons, those of European descent are not having enough children to replace the population (hence why John Howard gave us a baby bonus to encourage more babies), but the reason why our former treasurer and now Prime Minister gives is this: keeping immigration at sustained levels allows us to consistently grow our economy.

In other word’s the primary reason that our leaders are seeking to flood our countries with mass immigration is money. Importing workers means importing taxpayers. Importing taxpayers means the government can pad its budget and pay for the increasingly large government welfare and government service systems that they promise to increase at every election.

Meanwhile, history is looking us in the face telling us what happens every time there is a mass migration of peoples in history, reliably there is the clash of cultures and war. This is the elephant in the room that most people know intuitively and those of us who know history know it is a consistent trend. But to admit this trend and admit that the beginning rumblings of the clash of cultures we are starting to see is evidence of this trend repeating itself, means that we have to face the biggest lie we tell ourselves our modern western civilisation: that we are better than those who came before us in history.

It was for this reason that I posted this comment on Facebook:

I’ve developed a new term: modern supremacist. A modern supremacist is someone who thinks they are better than those who lived before us in history. And they believe we are not prone to the exact same social conditions and pressures as humans of a past era.

It’s not a new concept, C.S. Lewis called it chronological snobbery. But I think the term modern supremacist better gets across how foolish and dangerous such thinking is.

A lot of the public response I have seen to the evil terrorist attack in NZ last week can be described as the response of modern supremacists. So many people refuse to learn from human history and the mass movements of people and the social conditions that such mass movements cause.

I for one never want to see something like that happen again. As a historian…well you know the saying, those who do not know history are destined to repeat it. Those who do know it are destined to watch those who do not repeat it.

Currently, I see every significant leader on Facebook, in the Church or in politics, avoid discussing this trend, because it makes them uncomfortable. But the elephant is in the room, he is painted pink and is singing loudly and clearly: “Look at me, and learn. Learn from history, or become just another example of a generation of people who thought they we outside of history.”

I never want to see an attack like what happened in New Zealand ever happen again. I never want to see another attack going the other way either. But we need our leaders to look the truth in the face and realize that we are just as prone to the social pressures of mass migration that every other people group in history were. We need to learn this lesson.

You can read more of Matthew’s work on his website Matt Musings.

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