Welcome to the age of terrorists who don’t know what to believe.
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In the media, the manifesto of the mass killer in New Zealand was presented as textbook white supremacy. But his language was also filled with progressive slogans and trollish asides—deeply reflective of the hodgepodge of extreme fantasies sloshing around the Internet.
Now, a would-be butcher in the San Fernando Valley just north of Hollywood has made headlines, busted before he could carry out his plan to nail bomb white nationalists at local rallies—or maybe Jews on their way to synagogue, or cops, or enlisted personnel…
And his own biography is equally scattershot and contradictory: a 26-year-old Latino convert to Islam who served in Afghanistan, and was radicalized to evangelical jihadism online.
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Yet again, the schizoid fantasylands of the internet’s dark corners have led a lost young man to meld multiple identities into a single warrant for mass murder.
These are just two individuals. But the shift away from lucid and ideologically precise terrorists—think Osama bin Laden or the Unabomber—is growing clearer by the day. Like a satanic cable television, the internet is raising generations of people on a diet of endlessly swirling utopias and dystopias.
They are most often malleable young men. Yet while hungry for all-consuming doctrine, they seem to have learned from the internet that no one identity or doctrine can be true at the expense of the others.
That the only master narrative is death.
One theme or set of catchphrases may dominate the individual mind of such a terrorist, but a sea of incompatible demons churns below.
Most people—especially our elites—aren’t prepared to make sense of this new kind of terror. They’ll want to pin it on a specific ideology, as if this were still the 1990s or 1970s. Thanks to identity politics, people will try to blame every new terrorist on the defects or the evil of whichever political enemy seems the best fit.
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Which will only exacerbate our political divisions… and churn up even more fractured fantasies for consumption online.
The cycle will continue… and strengthen.
The purveyors of identity politics refuse to believe they’re sowing the seeds of our destruction in this way. The identity mongers won’t take responsibility for pushing more lost boys to become militant whites—they certainly won’t accept blame for pushing people to latch onto not one but a whole grab bag of violent delusions.
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But the reality will get much harder to deny as the cases keep piling up.
And the American people will get much angrier at the high and mighty elites demanding we kneel before the identity politics altar.