Ur-Fascism Contra Universal Nationalism
by Organon tou Ontos
UNIVERSAL NATIONALISM is the view that 1) every people wants its own nation, 2) every people is entitled to its own nation, and 3) every people should rule itself and not be ruled by others. This view is central to the beliefs of several Alt-Right and New Right thinkers.
In his “The Relevance of the Old Right,” Greg Johnson of Counter-Currents writes:
I am a “universal nationalist,” meaning that I believe that ethnonationalism is good for all peoples. Thus I am opposed to imperialism, whereas Old Right regimes practiced imperialism against their fellow Europeans as well as non-whites. Defending imperialism is basically telling your neighbors that you are not above a little murder and theft when it suits you. But that is no way to build solidarity among white nations or a peaceful planet in general, to the extent that these are possible.
I would like to briefly make the case for universal nationalism, a political ideology defined here as the belief that every nation should have a society and a state of its own. Put more simply still: Every people should have its own country; every people should rule itself, rather than be dictated by outsiders. I believe universal nationalism encapsulates many of the principles which would allow all human beings to live in a more peaceful, prosperous, and progressive world.
First, it is erroneous for Johnson to argue that his support for ethnic nationalism among all peoples is incompatible with imperialism. Ethnic nationalism is the view that a nation should reflect the ethnic identity of the people it houses: Historical, cultural, linguistic, and racial interests should be reflected in the domestic and foreign policy of that nation and its state. This may or may not coincide with with its independence and national sovereignty. That is, a people can have a nation without having autonomy. From the fact that humanity is a diverse amalgam of peoples, it does not follow that every people must have its own nation. Even if peoples were entitled to a nation, it does not follow that they warrant autonomy.
In addition, Johnson’s immediate inference is not just fallacious. It is also naive. Historically, one of the motivating forces behind imperialism was the observation that primitive peoples objectively existed but lacked what European peoples had: A structured society. This led to building dependent societies and nations that lacked national sovereignty.
This historical reality is also a reminder of the contrasts between peoples and their capacity to build a society. That is, some peoples seem constitutionally incapable of maintaining their own nation without the perpetual support of others. This leads to the second criticism of the universal nationalist prescription: That its ambition to ensure that every people has a nation of its own will require the very same deprivation of autonomy that Johnson and Durocher both reject imperialism for. There is also the likelihood that arbitrary decisions about borders will have to be made. We have no reason to believe that nations will always want to engage in peaceful population transfers or border disputes without external compulsion.
This leads to a fourth criticism: Durocher implies that multiculturalism is a cause of conflict between distinct peoples. In fact, multiculturalism and its problems are a symptom instead of being the cause of conflicts. The cause of conflicts and violence are the fact that peoples who are distinct come into contact. It does not matter whether they are flung together into the same country or whether they are the outcomes of expanding peoples.
Finally, and related, natural and human history is an unending conflict between biological types. In the course of history, various groups form and then differentiate into communities. In some cases, human communities formed nations. In this natural arena, a community is only entitled to what it can take and keep. Imperialism and settler colonialism, as well as the correlates of these activities at a more basic level, are extensions, not abrogations, of ethnic nationalism. This process is responsible for the biological and human diversity in the world, and that is what the universal nationalist claims to admire and want to preserve. The point is that a nation is forged, not doled out, a result of organic, not managerial, processes.
The ur-fascist alternative to universal nationalism can be summarized as follows: 1) Every people asserts its own ethnic identity, and in most cases want a nation of their own, 2) every people is entitled to what it can take and keep, and 3) when a nation is forged, a people will naturally seek to maximize its own sovereignty, and this may result in imperialism or settler colonialism, wherein the vital interests of a people result in expanded boundaries.
 Frank Salter, in Chapter 7 of his On Genetic Interests, is one of the first writers to plow an argument in favor of “universal nationalism.”
 Another problem with universal nationalism is that it does not distinguish between types of imperialism: Cultural, economic, ethnic or racial, geostrategic, and other manifestations of imperialism exist. Some of these are not in the long term vital interests of a nation.
 Ur-fascism does not entail a rejection of the desire for national identity on the part of the majority of peoples. What it rejects is the universal nationalist view that entitlement, rather than struggle, should determine whether or not different peoples have distinct nations.