Food for the European Mind – Part I
When we had a little Europe, when we were only nine or twelve, we could have hope in the European Union. We could think that it might become an alternative. The ‘greater’ Europe as we know it is becoming less governable and more open to American influences. This is no longer a geopolitical construction; it is merely an economic construction.
- Christian Bouchet is one of the most valuable and interesting European thinkers of our time. He is a leading national revolutionary, working as a member of the Front National, and is also the man behind the useful online resource Voxnr. Below is the text of an interview that he granted to the Swedish Website Motpol in 2011.
The interest in and knowledge of French and European political movements and thought is rapidly growing in Scandinavia, but is still in its infancy. Would you give a presentation of yourself and your background for those readers who are not yet familiar with you?
By profession I am a teacher. I am from a family whose involvement with the ‘wrong side’ goes back to the time of the French Revolution and the uprising in the Vendee. So, naturally I got into politics in 1969 in the same camp as my family. What differentiated me from my family, which was closely related to the royalist and reactionary current, is that I quickly joined the nationalist revolutionary movement.
Thus, from the early 1970s I was a militant in the New Right groups who went on to succeed: the Organisation lutte du peuple, the Groupes nationalistes révolutionnaires of François Duprat, and then the Mouvement nationaliste révolutionnaire. I was a simple activist at first, but I later became a branch organiser before entering the French management of this ideological trend in the mid-1980s. Successively, I have been Secretary-General of the movements Troisième Voie, Nouvelle résistance, and Unité radicale, and was one of the leaders of the pan-European movement, Front européen de liberation.
From 1998 to 2002, as part of the strategy of the group Unité radical, I led the faction called ‘radical’ in the Mouvement national of Bruno Megret, and I belonged to the National Council of this party, for which I stood in various elections.
Since 2002, I have gradually moved away from activism in tiny groups and joined the Front National, where I have subordinate responsibilities at the local level.
Currently, the bulk of my work involves writing. I have run the magazine Résistance since 1997, I am the French correspondent for the Italian nationalist-revolutionary daily Rinascita, and, since November 2008, I have been an associate editor in charge of the international pages of the biweekly, Flash. I have worked both under my own name and under a pseudonym with many other publications, including Réfléchir et agir, Eurasia, and Nations presse magazine.
On the Internet, I am the editor of Voxnr.com, and my articles are widely cited on the Web.
Besides all this, I am the owner of the publishing house Ars magna, and I am an associate publisher at Éditions Avatar.
You are often described as a leading exponent of the national revolutionary current. Some of our readers may not be familiar with this. Would you give a presentation of the national revolutionary movement, its history and vision?
We can give several definitions of revolutionary nationalism, all valid and yet competing. Arguably, it is the European counterpart of the national liberation movements in the Third World. It is a component of a larger political entity which is the Conservative Revolution, and is a ‘centrist’ current which rejects the notions of Right and Left in favour of the ideological unity of the people. A French author, Fabrice Bouthillon, has explained this in a recent article. ‘It’s an attempt to revive what had been undone by the French Revolution, and which multiplied across Europe after 1789: these attempts at a compromise between the Right and the Left that constitute centrism. […] There are two types of centrism, either by subtraction or by the addition of extremes.’ It is precisely the model of the latter which is in fact radical centrism, and combining the extreme Left and extreme Right is revolutionary nationalism.
From a historical perspective, almost all European countries, or those populated by people of European descent, have developed revolutionary nationalism at one time or another in their history, such as Jonsisme in Spain, Peronism in Argentina, or the movements around Niekisch, Jünger, or Strasser in Germany, and so on.
In Third World countries, varieties of revolutionary nationalism currents can also be identified, such as Nasserism or Ba’athism.
Would you name some of the people who inspire you?
It is always difficult to do this. The big risk is to merely name-drop and nothing more.
That being said, I fully realise that my thought is indebted to a number of people, so I can mention some names of authors who have had a fundamental influence on me.
There is of course Alain de Benoist, who put ‘the ideas in place’ (Les Idées à l’endroit is the title of a book by Alain de Benoist-Ed.) for me. Then there were Julius Evola and – to a lesser extent – René Guénon who gave me a ‘worldview’, and Alexander Dugin and Jean Thiriart who taught me geopolitics. Not to mention FranÃ§ois Duprat, whose footsteps I have followed in for almost forty years.
We are both inspired by Jean Thiriart and his vision of a Europe ‘from Dublin to Vladivostok’. How would you describe the current European Union? Does it hold any potential for a European future of the sort Thiriart worked for?
It seems to me that the Europe which is organised in Brussels grows a little further from the Europe of which we have dreamed each day. I hoped for a while that the devil would step aside, and that a European power might arise from the European Union.
In fact, it has not happened, and instead of a powerful Europe, we have a large common market which is soft on multinational corporations and hard on the people, and which is geopolitically impotent because it is too big and divisive.
When we had a little Europe, when we were only nine or twelve, we could have hope in the European Union. We could think that it might become an alternative. The ‘greater’ Europe as we know it now currently includes twenty-seven countries, and it has not finished growing. It is becoming less governable and more open to American influences. This is no longer a geopolitical construction; it is merely an economic construction.
At the same time that it grows in size, this Europe is divided along bases that are no longer national, but regional or ethnic. Of course, to defend local identities is a commendable commitment with which we all agree. But there is also a risk of an unintended consequence, a perverse drift, which ultimately leads to the promotion of the breakup of Europe and its weakening. And this, unfortunately, is the approach taken by the various identity groups which are active at the European level.
Their Europe of a hundred flags is a Europe with a hundred Kosovos!
It is a Europe where all solidarity disappears, and where we arrive at positions odious and grotesque, such as that of the Breton identitarian leader who said that in Brittany, he saw no difference between a French immigrant and an immigrant from Africa!
It also divided Europe even more than it is now, so that the weakest components are becoming further manipulated, and ultimately Europe will become completely helpless. We could end up with a Europe comparable to Germany after the Treaty of Westphalia, divided into 350 states, which for over 200 years saw its history being written by others.
When I see that those who advocate the dismemberment of our country and Europe at the same time dare, in defiance of geopolitical reality, to campaign on the theme of Europe’s power, I can only speculate concerning their intelligence or sincerity.
What is your analysis of the relationship of Russia, Turkey, and North Africa with Europe?
A strong Europe, acting in a multipolar world, would have friendly relations and cooperation with these geopolitical areas. But Europe is so weak…so at present these relations are unimportant, as we have seen in connection to the Tunisian and Egyptian crises earlier this year.
With Russia, we want a strong and deep alliance structuring our continent around the axis of Paris-Berlin-Moscow.
The Maghreb countries have been linked to us by geography and history since ancient times. The Mediterranean should unite and not divide us. But still, it would not be possible to really make it a Mare Nostrum without first ending the presence of the American Navy, and without stopping the influence of the agents of Langley in the states that border it… A proactive policy of development should put an end to immigration from the South to the North.
But for this to succeed, as with the alliance with Russia which I mentioned earlier, it would require political will in Europe, in spite of the absence of a pivotal country in it. But this will not happen with the European Union, and no longer exists in France since the end of the reign of Jacques Chirac.
As for Turkey, its fate is not to enter the European Union as desired by the US, but to establish a regional geopolitics with Syria, Iran, and Iraq, as Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu is currently attempting.
To be continued…