The Camp of the Saints

This recent news about African refugees flooding into other countries puts me in mind of a book I read many years ago, The Camp of the Saints, by Jean Raspail. It was written in 1973 and is proving eerily prescient. Here are excerpts from some Amazon reviews:

This book is so politically incorrect that I admire Amazon.com for actually carrying it. Written in the early 1970s, this book looks beyond the cold war to a North-South confrontation in which European civilization is unilaterally morally disarmed. The thesis is simple: suppose a million starving people from the Ganges actually took Western rhetoric of compassion, explotiation, etc., to heart, and comandeered, en masse, shipping, with the intention of moving to the shores of France? (Raspail, of course, is French.) Would anyone stop them? …The author’s point is that any who dare to say that ‘white’ civilization has a right to exist are branded racists and cast out of the pale of polite society.  (Reviewer: Lloyd A. Conway)

Jean Raspail was already a distinguished travel writer and novelist when he put his reputation on the line with this one – He had a lot to lose. To his credit, Raspail pulls no punches and manages to say just about everything there is to say about the threat that Third World immigration poses to Western Civilization….Immigration negatively impacts the environment, the economy, crime, and national security. This novel posits that it further threatens to destroy the relatively democratic, tolerant and civilized cultures of the West and the essential commonalities of the Western peoples. According to Raspail, the West “has no soul left” and “it is always the soul that wins the decisive battles.” To call the novel “racist” is unfair. Raspail includes an East Indian among the “Saints” who defend France, and portrays many White Frenchmen who welcome the invaders as their equals. The novel clearly states that being a Westerner is NOT a matter of race, but a “state of mind.” (Reviewer: James NYC)

This novel has had a controversial history. Three decades after its original publication, “The Camp of the Saints” can still provoke arguments. There are many persons who have denounced it as racist and xenophobic without bothering to read it. Others have praised it as being prophetic and timely. In light of recent events in France and the Netherlands, specifically, and Great Britain, Germany and Italy, generally, this book seems more relevant today than when it was first printed. (Reviewer: Borowy26 “Hank”)