|September 16, 2006|
|Media type||Print (Hardcover)|
|LC Class||E895 .S84 2006|
America Alone: The End of the World as We Know It (ISBN 0-89526-078-6) is a nonfiction book by Mark Steyn, published in 2006. It forecasts the downfall of Western civilization owing to internal weaknesses and the increasing Muslim population in Western countries and the world generally.
America Alone is set in the context of the global war on terror. Steyn argues that "much of what we loosely call the Western world will not survive the twenty-first century, and much of it will effectively disappear within our lifetimes, including many if not most European countries."
Steyn attributes the forecast fall of the Western world to three factors:
- Demographic decline, based on the observation that European nations have low birth rates while Muslim nations have higher birth rates. Specifically, in recent years the population of the developed world declined from about 30% of world population to around 20%, while the population of Muslim nations increased from about 15% to 20%.
- The unsustainability of the advanced Western social-democratic state, based on the thesis that the responsibilities of normal adults, such as care of the elderly, childcare, health care and insurance, have been slowly taken over by the state. Steyn argues that these programs erode humanity's basic sense of self-reliance to a point at which a more resilient group of people — Muslims in his view — will take control.
- The exhaustion of civilization. Steyn argues that Western nations are so focused on moral and cultural relativism—with "diversity" and "racism" as their new favorite words—that they are unable to see that their existence is threatened. Specifically, he argues that European nations have given up defending themselves and rely on America for their defense. He views anti-Americanism as a symptom of civilizational exhaustion, whether manifested by Muslims (to whom America symbolizes gay porn, children born out of wedlock, immodest women, and immorality) or by Europeans (to whom America symbolises a crude and radical Christianity, fat rednecks and uncontrolled firearms). However in his view America is the most benign hegemonic power the world has ever seen. According to Steyn, America will be the last and only country—as all others will be taken over by Muslims—that will retain its sense of self-preservation, but this is not a given, as America's enemies know that it ran from Vietnam and they hope that America will continue to flee when faced with a challenge.
Steyn's final argument is that the Muslim world will not need to carry out an outright attack. Instead, Europe will collapse from "wimpiness" or "multicultural 'sensitivity,'" leading to betrayal of the state's core values. Thus, during the Danish 'cartoon jihad' of 2006, Jack Straw, then British foreign secretary, hailed the 'sensitivity' of Fleet Street in not reprinting the offending representations of the Prophet."
- Mark Steyn's book is essentially a challenge to the bien-pensants among us: an insistence that we recognize an extraordinary threat and thus the possible need for extraordinary responses. He need not pose as if he were the only one with the courage to think in this way.
- The West's Last Chance: Will We Win the Clash of Civilizations?
- We Are Doomed: Reclaiming Conservative Pessimism
- The Death of the West
- Danish cartoon controversy
- Jack Straw
- Steyn, Mark. America Alone: The End Of The World As We Know It. Regnery Publishing, 2006, p. xiii.
- Steyn, Mark. America Alone: The End Of The World As We Know It. Regnery Publishing, 2006, p. xiv.
- Steyn, Mark. America Alone: The End Of The World As We Know It. Regnery Publishing, 2006, p. xxx.
- "Facing the Islamist Menace". city-journal.org. City Journal (New York City).
- Irwin Stelzer (March 12, 2007). "Reader of the Free World". The Weekly Standard.