Was slavery an authentic 
part of Western civilisation?
by Colin Liddell

One of the things currently being weaponised against the White race is our historical connection to slavery. The usual defence is to point out:

(1) Everybody did it
(2) Lots of countries still do it
(3) We abolished it

These are all good defenses, but they ultimately don't work. The reason for this is because they are passive. Passive defence, unless it is connected to offense, only confirms you as the target, which inevitably means more attacks.

Logically there are only two ways to defend the White race from the blood libel of slavery:

(1) Justify slavery as a "positive"
(2) Shift the blame for slavery to someone else

Even though there is some evidence that slavery was actually beneficial to Blacks (e.g. through temporary enslavement they were able to colonise vast territories that were otherwise inaccessible to them, including the USA), it was nevertheless extremely detrimental to many of them on an individual level, while also causing major and ongoing social problems in the West as a whole.

To claim therefore that slavery was a "positive," even in the context of a Malthusian society, in which all working-class people existed in material conditions equivalent to or lower than slavery, is a poor fit with the moral architecture of our present society. This will lead to metapolitical defeat for anyone who pushes this line.

Regarding the second option, namely shifting the blame to another group, I have seen many attempts to do this by parts of the Dissident Right, especially with regard to "The Jews." Sure, there were some Jews involved in the Transatlantic slave trade and some Jews in America owned slaves, but why do Blacks generally have Anglo names rather than Jewish ones? The macro fact is that Jews, from the 17th to 19th centuries, were not in a position to play the dominant role in the slave economy, and didn't. That world was Anglo-dominated.

Two slave owners, a colonialist, and some guy who wanted
to send all the Blacks back to Africa—quick, call BLM!
Furthermore, there is little benefit to the White race to falsely attribute slavery to one of its ethnicities. This just reinforces the notion that Whites are uniquely responsible for slavery, while also serving to divide the White race as it now exists (i.e. including large numbers of people with Jewish or partial Jewish ancestry, or their non-Jewish friends).

A more promising strategy is to blame another clearly non-European group by highlighting the macro historical facts of interracial slavery, as this reveals that it was essentially a civilisational virus with deep roots in Islamic civilisation.

Part of the usual defence against blaming Whites for slavery is that everybody did it. This, alas, is simply not true.

Indeed in the West anti-slavery has extremely deep roots. As is well-known, slavery was once very common in the Roman Empire, but was gradually supplanted by serfdom and feudalism. This was mainly an economic process, as most slaves in Rome lived in large, urban centers and on large commercial estates that gradually declined as Rome's economy became increasingly heavily-taxed, rural, and militarised. However, there was also a cultural and spiritual synergy between this gradual process and the rise of Christianity.

Throughout the so-called "Dark Ages" there were many pronouncements made against slavery. Part of this was connected to the fact that enslavement was often part of the process of faith conversion, something widely practiced by Muslims but opposed by Christians. In fact the spread of Islam was directly connected to conquest and enslavement, with defeated peoples seeking better treatment by accepting Allah as their god.

Funny how Islam only caught on in those countries conquered by...Islam.
There was also an important Jewish aspect to this, as Jews were heavily involved in the slave trade in this period, as revealed by the Jewish Encyclopedia:
At the time of Pope Gregory the Great (590-604) Jews had become the chief traders in this class of traffic. He objected to the Jews holding Christian slaves ("Epist." ix. 109) because he feared that they would be converted to Judaism (ib. iv. 21); and he wrote to the Bishop of Naples that the Jews dealt in Christian slaves which they bought in the Gallic territories (ib. ix. 36). It has been suggested by Jacobs that the British slaves who had been brought to the Roman market, attracting Gregory's attention to the need of Christianizing England, were in the hands of Jewish slave-dealers ("Jews of Angevin England," p. 5).

With the rise of Islam large opportunities were afforded to the Jews to supply Moslem slaves to the Christian world, and Christian slaves to that of Islam; and Ibn Khordadhbeh in the ninth century describes two routes by which Jewish slave-dealers carried such slaves from West to East and from East to West. According to Abraham ibn Ya'ḳub, Byzantine Jews regularly purchased Slavs at Prague to be sold as slaves. Louis the Fair granted charters to Jews visiting his kingdom, permitting them to possess and sell slaves, provided the latter had not been baptized; three of these charters are still extant. Agobard claimed that, notwithstanding this provision, the Jews kept Christians as slaves, citing the instance of a Christian refugee from Cordova who declared that his coreligionists were frequently sold, as he had been, to the Moors. Many, indeed, of the Spanish Jews owed their wealth to the trade in Slavonian slaves brought from Andalusia (Grätz, "Gesch." vii.). Similarly, the Jews of Verdun, about the year 949, purchased slaves in their neighborhood and sold them in Spain (Aronius, "Regesten," No. 127).

The Church repeatedly protested against the sale of Christians to Jews, the first protest occurring as early as 538. At the third council of Orleans a decree was passed that Jews must not possess Christian servants or slaves, a prohibition which was repeated over and over again at different councils—as at Orleans (541), Paris (633), Toledo (fourth council, 633), Szabolcs (1092), Ghent (1112), Narbonne (1227), Béziers (1246). After this time the need of such a prohibition seems to have disappeared. Thus, at Marseilles, in the thirteenth century, there were only two cases of Jewish, as against seven of Christian, slave-traders ("R. E. J." xvi.). It was part of St. Benedict's rule that Christian slaves were not to serve Jews (Aronius, "Regesten," No. 114). Despite the Church rule, many Christians trafficked with the Jews in slaves, and the Church dignitaries of Bavaria even recognized this traffic by insisting on the Jews and other merchants paying toll for slaves (ib. No. 122). The Margrave of Meissen sold many of his subjects to Jews, and complaints were raised against him by the emperor Henry on that score (ib. No. 141). It became a part of Christian duty to ransom slaves, and St. Adalbert gave up the Prague bishopric because he could not free all the slaves of Jews, while the countess Judith of Ladislaus paid ransom-money for some Jewish slaves the day before her death (1085). Still, the Carlovingian emperors granted permission for Jews to hold slaves without their being baptized, and so ipso facto manumitted. Such permission was given, for instance, to Judah ibn Kalonymus and his associates at Speyer, and, about 1090, to Jews of Worms. In 1100 Jews paid a tax of 4 pence for each slave held by them at Coblenz.

Protests were frequently made against the Jews circumcising their slaves. It seems that they devoted considerable attention to proselytizing them, and it was to the interest of slaves to become Jews, because they could not then be resold. It would appear, however, that Jews were more stringent about the circumcision of slaves in the sixteenth century than they were in the tenth (Abrahams, "Jewish Life in the Middle Ages," p. 99), though this applies only to Mohammedan countries, where Jews were allowed to own only Christian slaves. A slave who was taken to the Holy Land became ipso facto free as soon as he touched the soil ("Responsa of Geonim," section 12).
The pattern we see here is of the Jews as middle men between two civilisations, both of which  were still practising slavery, but whereas one of the civilisations was moving away from slavery for economic and moral reasons, the other was not. While Europe supplanted the economic need for slavery by feudalism and later town economies, dominated by free labour and guilds, the Islamic world continued to rely heavily on slavery.

Not only did the Christian Church constantly rule against slavery, so did secular leaders. In 840 the Venetians pledged to neither buy Christian slaves in the Holy Roman Empire, nor sell them to Muslims. Instead they switched to trading in Slavs from the East, most of whom were still pagan. In 960 the slave trade was banned in the city of Venice, under the rule of the Doge Pietro IV Candiano.

Around the year 900, the Byzantine Emperor Leo VI "the Wise" prohibited voluntary self-enslavement, and commanded that such contracts shall be null and void and punishable by flagellation for both parties to the contract.

In 1220 the Sachsenspiegel, the most influential German code of law in the Middle Ages, condemned slavery as a violation of man's likeness to God. In 1315 in France, King Louis X published a decree abolishing slavery and proclaiming that "France signifies freedom," and declaring that any slave setting foot on French ground should be freed.

So, after shaking off the Roman legacy of slavery with the help of Christianity, how did Western civilisation skip temporarily back into slavery in the colonial period?

The key to this is the role played by Spain and Portugal. These two Iberian states were, in effect, bi-civilisational countries, having characteristics of both Islam and Europe. Both had been swamped by Muslim conquest in the 8th century, and both had gradually emerged as Christian states, following a centuries-long period of reconquest that only ended in 1492 with the fall of Grenada. Despite throwing off the Muslim yoke, the Iberian kingdoms still retained many of the characteristics of Muslim societies, including a strong tendency to "other" non-believers and a strong legacy of slavery.

The Siete Partidas, a law code developed by Alfonso X of Castile (1252–1284) defined slavery in accord with Christian teaching as:
"...the basest and most wretched condition into which anyone could fall because man, who is the freest noble of all God's creatures, becomes thereby in the power of another, who can do with him what he wishes as with any property, whether living or dead." 
However, as the code was dealing with unpleasant realities, it also specified who could be enslaved. This included those who were captured in "just war," the offspring of an enslaved mother, and those who voluntarily sold themselves into slavery.

Also slavery was viewed in the code—as it was throughout much of its history in Europe—as a "temporary" condition, from which the slaves or their descendants could be freed under certain conditions. However, when Spain and Portugal expanded overseas and became colonial empires, this changed. The Iberian colonialists started slipping back into habits and attitudes more typical of the Muslim Empires that had once dominated their country.

Despite condemnation by the Catholic Church,which represented the cultural and moral core of Europe at this time, this trend was reinforced by economic expedience. The institution of slavery increasingly took on Islamic characteristics. The best way to describe this is the "kuffarisation" of Blacks and Indians.

Kuffarisation, as I use it here, is an idea central to Islam, namely the belief that people who are not of the faith—namely "kuffars"—are less deserving of respect as human beings and can therefore be treated differently.

This is something that we have seen in recent years even in modern England, where Muslim grooming gangs referred to their victims as "kuffars" and "pieces of meat." This was referred to in a recent debate on "grooming" gangs in the UK House of Lords by Lord Pearson of Rannoch (UKIP):
Turning to what can be done to stop this colossal social scandal, I fear we must start by accepting that the perpetrators are indeed radical Muslims...Noble and Islamophiliac Lords may not like me saying that, but the excellent Quilliam Foundation found that it is true of 83% of the criminals concerned. If anyone is in any doubt, they should read Peter McLoughlin’s 2016 masterpiece Easy Meat: Inside Britain’s Grooming Gang Scandal, which should be compulsory reading for the Government...I have mentioned before in your Lordships’ House the tenets of abrogation, Taqiyya, Al Hijra, the lesser jihad and the pursuit of a world caliphate. However, there is another, which may lie at the root of the grooming gang scandal: namely, the radical Muslim tenet known as, “what your right hand possesses”. I am advised that this allows Muhammad’s followers to have sex slaves among their captives and among non-Muslim, or kuffar, girls.​
Interestingly the term kuffar in this sense is also present in the old South African term for Blacks, which was "kaffir," even though those who used it were overwhelmingly Dutch Calvinist.

The clash between these two strands—on the one hand idealistic, somewhat naive universalist morality and on the other an economically-driven, pseudo-Islamic dehumanisation of colonial populations—was evident in Papal pronouncements even in the early days of the colonial period.

A Papal Bull by Pope Paul III, entitled "Sublimis Deus" (June 2, 1537), strongly criticises the process of "kuffarisation" used by the slavers to justify the economic necessity of slavery:
"Therefore the Truth Himself Who can neither deceive nor be deceived, when He destined the preachers of the faith to the office of preaching, is known to have said: 'Going, make disciples of all nations.' 'All,' he said, without any exception, since all are capable of the discipline of the faith."

Seeing this and envying it, the enemy of the human race, who always opposes all good men so that the race may perish, has thought up a way, unheard of before now, by which he might impede the saving word of God from being preached to the nations. He has stirred up some of his allies who, desiring to satisfy their own avarice, are presuming to assert far and wide that the Indians of the West and the South who have come to our notice in these times be reduced to our service like brute animals, under the pretext that they are lacking the Catholic Faith. And they reduce them to slavery, treating them with afflictions they would scarcely use with brute animals."
This sort of dehimanization by lack of faith is far more typical of Islam.

Of course by 1537 the Catholic Church was being displaced at the centre of European civilisation by the Reformation and the rise of strong and greedy monarchies. This helped the Kuffarising tendency to temporarily predominate.

As other European countries—France, Holland, and England—joined in the important work of exploring and opening up the New World, they unsuspectingly adopted the moral tone set by their Iberian and Islamic predecessors, before their own humanitarian characteristics kicked in from the 18th century onwards.

Does a  musty old document signed by a bunch of slaveholders have any validity?
Interracial slavery with its two-tier morality—the same thing that evokes so much horror and hysteria in the West today—is something that clearly does not align with the moral architecture of our civilisation. The correct way to view it is as a kind of cultural virus that spread from Islam to the Iberian states and, from there, into the bloodstreams of other Western countries and America itself.

That this was an alien infestation is clear, both in the long history of European anti-slavery that predated it and in the growing resistance that it subsequently faced in the West, and which finally extinguished it. The question now is what to do with the people and problems that it left behind as a dark legacy in our civilisation.

Colin Liddell is the Chief Editor of Affirmative Right and the author of Interviews & Obituaries, a collection of encounters with the famous and the dead. Support his work by buying it here. He is also featured in Arktos's A Fair Hearing: The Alt-Right in the Words of Its Members and Leaders.

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