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GNOSIS 4/2006
Neo-fascism and Islam
or rather, dangerous friendships  articolo redazionale

In a small niche, but a lively minority, populated with ideologies and important intellectuals, the pro-Islamic Right arouses curiosity and poses questions about an affinity which, at the least, must appear surprising. If, in the extremist Right circles, ethnic, cultural and religious prejudices persist with regard to the Moslems, and if these last, in their turn, consider the Right Activists as ‘infidels’, where is this convergence? Undoubtedly, it is in the strong and shared anti-Semitic feelings. However, Claudio Mutti, a charismatic figure of the pro-Islamic Right, in a recent interview, suggested a less simplistic view of the problem, pointing out other factors of a theoretic, historical and political nature: such as, the Islamic conception offered by the traditional thinkers: the historical solidarity of fascism and national socialism with the Moslem people; the manifestation in the 1970’s of Islam as a political and spiritual force, in the fight against the same enemies.

Arabic edition of Mein Kampf

The traditionalist thinking

At the root of the "temptation of the East", that is, the attraction that the East, and particularly Islam, has always had for certain sectors of the radical Right, we find the ‘old’ dichotomy between progress/modernism, on the one hand, and the world of tradition, on the other.
Those of the Right who see in modernism a form of ideological-cultural barbarization of the West recognize, in the Orientals and the Islamic world, the quality of having safeguarded the centrality of the traditions and spiritual values.
"The man of tradition" celebrated by this Right finds his ideological references in thinkers such as the Frenchman, René Guénon and, principally, in Julius Evola. To the former, scholar of spiritual traditions and esoteric material, converted to Islam after various stays in Egypt, with the name of Abdal Wahid Yahia, recalls a certain "spiritualist Right" which, over time, will be marked by numerous conversions to the Islamic faith.
Born in Blois, in November, 1886, died in 1951, in Cairo, his new home, scholar of traditional sciences, Guénon is considered one of the most important esoterists of our time, and he lived embodying the prototype of the "integral traditionalist".
Among his writings, "The Crisis of the Modern World " and "East and West", he theoretically elaborates the critique of the modern Western Civilization, where the loss of the ties with tradition have impeded the approach to transcendence. He writes, "The modern civilization appears, in history, as a real anomaly: of all the civilizations we know, it is the only one which has developed in a purely materialistic sense; the only one which is not founded on any principle of superior order " the distain and repulsion that the other peoples - above all, the Orientals " feel with regard to the western people comes, to a great extent, from the fact that these latter appear, in general, to be men without tradition or religion".
According to Guénon, therefore, the West lives in an age of darkness of the spirit, having lost the ties with the superior states of being.
The incompatibility between the East and the West, the contrasts between the two civilizations are due, in fact, to the Western abandonment of tradition, which has resulted in its progressive barbarization and secularization: it has not conserved the mystic-esoteric quest as Islam has, above all, in its Sufic expression, to which Guénon was converted, in 1912.
The term ‘sufi’, which in Arabic means ‘of wool’, indicates a mystic, an ascetic (his dress is a hooded robe of wool, the suf ). The Sufi pursues a life of elevated spirituality to reach the mystic union with God. In the Islamic faith, therefore, Sufism expresses an orientation towards transcendence, to the spiritual communion and knowledge of the divine truth, the state of grace which God reserves to the initiates, who must complete a long journey of spiritual ascent with the guidance of a master.
Guénon expresses a line of thinking among the most rigorous and least tolerant with regard to concepts such as progress and democracy: the same as that towards scientific principles, denouncing the destructive effect of the modern mentality, which, according to him, has disintegrated the knowledge and values which were handed down through the generations in the Western world, until the Middle Ages.
In the course of his lifetime, conducted as a ‘good Moslem’, in a reserved and retiring manner, Guénon collaborated with various publications, accepting among the many, the invitation of another eminent traditionalist thinker, the Italian, Julius Evola, to contribute to the "The Fascist Regime", the daily newspaper of Cremona, founded in 1922.
Mystic Philosopher, as well as a painter and writer, Evola was an admirer, scholar and translator of Guénon’s works, sharing the ultra-traditionalist and spiritualist line of thinking which would feed his intolerance with regard to the western civilization and fuel his aspiration to restore a sacred and mythological relation with the national past.
Evola was born in Rome in 1898 where he died in 1974. After adhering to the movements of Futurism and Dadaism, he dedicated himself to philosophical studies under the influence of the Nietzsche and Gentile schools of thought. He was a strenuous opponent of Capitalism and of its social and political derivations: in his most important work, "Revolt against the Modern World", 1934, he theorizes total refusal of modernity.
He was a supporter of a policy of power and subscribed to the theories of Spengler (1) on the "Decline of the West" and on the causes of its moral decadence, due, among other things, to the "Judaic Mercenarism" and to the "Christian Pietism": all of which, after the war, became the principle ideological reference for the traditionalist Right.
On re-reading his works from an anti-system "revolutionary" viewpoint, many roots of the most extreme manifestations of the Right of the 60’s and 70’s, have been found, (many Evoliani have professed to be exponents of the "Centre for the Studies of the New Order"), inspired by its warlike radicalism: racist and elite, marked by a certain ‘distain for the common people’ ("the mass must be awakened from the decadent torpor of the crumbling capitalistic world").
In these ideas, many young people find an answer to the need for a common conscience, an individual security in fighting the ‘the increase of the loss of guidelines", the loss of traditional values and the disintegration of society.
The value of conserving the sense of sacredness and the bond with transcendence is credited also to Islam, according to Evola. His words are laudable on this belief; underlining the preserved centrality of the "tradition as a formative force" of superior quality with respect to the “beliefs” diffused in the West, with a critical accent on Christianity.
According to Evola, "the transcendent stimulus of the Islamic world lies in the organizational principle of the social life, regulated by the "Islamic Law, the Sharia", revealed directly by God to guide believers in the practical expression of their faith and conduct. Its basis, the Koran, is conceived as the very word of God.
Evola dedicated particular attention to the concept of the jihad, extolling the ‘major jihad’, which, in the Islamic doctrine, is the interior ‘spiritual war, a sacred and obligatory commitment for all believers: an ascetic effort to better oneself and conquer bad habits and weaknesses. On the contrary, the ‘minor jihad’ is ‘the material war’ and concerns a merely bellicose intervention, such as the defence of Islamic territory in the case of aggression.
In the Evolian concept, the Islamic principle of ‘major jihad’ is related to that which in the world of tradition defines the ‘combative’ experience through which abstinence and meditation are reached and the action becomes the vehicle for the spiritual transcendence.
Prototypes of this model of ‘spiritual elitism’ are considered to be formations such as the Romanian "Iron Guard", of Cornelius Codreanu and, above all, the German "SS Waffen".


With regard to the elitist Nazi Corp, centred on values of military ethics of exceptional severity, discipline and inflexibility, Evola observes the Spartan spirit, the sense of honour and of sacrifice pushed to the point of mystical abstention, to the ‘heroic path’ etc., In this formulation of the SS, one can trace a strong component of the esoteric-initiation which has, however, diffusely characterized Nazism and the cultural roots of which are steeped in these ancient disciplines, from astrology to alchemy, from occultism to the esoteric: subjects towards which A. Hitler was very attracted (2) , and which the scientific thinking of the 15th and 16th centuries and the Enlightenment had obscured.

Nazism and the Islamic world

During Nazism, contacts and convergence between the regime and the Islamic world were plentiful. In fact, it is noted how the Arab people nurtured a great admiration for Hitler, and vice versa. It is also noted how, on more than one occasion, the Führer expressed his admiration of the Islamic religion and judged it superior to the Christian one.
The Moslem liking for Nazism is historically documented, moreover, the mutual anti-Jewish feelings created a bond between Hitler and the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, Haj Amin Al-Usayni. What is more, the latter contributed to the organization and recruitment of the Moslem Waffen SS, the Islamic military unit which fought on the side of the Axis.
However, at the root of the Moslem alliance with the Axis, there was also the desire for emancipation by the Arab peoples, who saw in the Second World War and the Nazi-Fascist military-political strategy, an opportunity to free themselves from the colonial yoke of the Western powers (England and France in primis) and to resolve the ‘Zionist problem’, seeing in the figure of Hitler a "champion in the fight against the Jews".
In this respect, however, El Alamein represented a total defeat for the Islamic world. Above all, for the Mufti, who had ceaselessly fought the ‘spectre’ of the Hebrew settlement on Palestinian soil, counting on the German promise "that no European Jew would enter Palestine" and that the Reich was pledged to fight Hebraism throughout the world and the Zionist ethnicity in Palestine.
In virtue of these ties, it was natural that many German ex-officials, after the fall of Nazism, would seek asylum in the Arab countries and in the Middle East, where they guaranteed support and collaboration to the local governments, above all, in the development of military apparatus and information.
Many ex-hierarchy Nazis fled to Egypt, where they obtained prestigious positions during the Nasser period.


On March 5th, 1965, at the age of 63, Omar Amin Von Leers, dies in Cairo. A German, converted to Islam, a Colonel of the ‘SS’ and collaborator of Goebbels, with the specific responsibility for anti-Semitic propaganda.
Born in Mecklenburg in January, 1902, Von Leers distinguishes himself for his intellectual gifts. An excellent linguist (it seems he knew five foreign languages perfectly, among which was Yiddish, and perhaps was also able to write Latin fluently). A brilliant academic career leads him to the position of Professor at the Jena University; he collaborates with Goebbels at the Ministry of Propaganda, for which he wrote over 30 papers, between 1933 and 1945.
Through his wife, he met Herman Wirth, philologist, anthropologist, researcher of mythology and symbols, scholar of the origins of the Indo-European peoples and of monotheistic faiths" appreciating, in particular, the Nordic occultist neo-pagan vision centred on a "sun monotheism", which led him to define the Nazi regime as the period of light after the darkness: "from the heights of the original Nordic culture of the Stone Age, we have journeyed the deep valleys of centuries of decadence, to now rise again to new heights … under the cross of the great Era of Stone, the ancient and sacred Swastika".
He shares with Karl Haushofer the Eurasian vision of a Rome-Berlin-Moscow-Tokyo axis, founded on the conviction of the existence of a common ‘Nordic race’. In this framework, the alliance between the Eurasian continental forces, in particular, Germany and Russia is considered as a bulwark against the Western Powers, Britain and the United States. For this reason, Von Leers did not agree with the Nazi campaign against Russia.
In 1933, he edits the review "The Nordic World", publication of the "Society of the Prehistoric and Protostoric Germany" and, in the same year, writes an article on the Jewish question in the "National Socialist Monthly Publication", in which he speaks of the possibility of solving the ‘problem’ by means of a mass transfer of the Jews to a territory outside of Europe (for example, Madagascar). The resolution of the "Hebraic problem" is seen by Von Leers as a "mission for the defence of the Germanic people” and on this theme, he will become fairly well-known, also thanks to the treatise "Juden Sehen Dich An" ("The Jews are watching you") of 1933.
Following the fall of the Reich, he spends more than a year in an American POW camp. He escapes to Italy and finally reaches Argentina. In 1955, he transfers to Egypt (to quote Von Leers: "today, the centre of the world struggle against Zionist colonization, which deprives nations of their liberty"), where he makes contact with the Moslem Brothers and converts to Islam, adopting, in fact, the name of Omar Amin. Thanks to his enthusiastic support of Arab nationalism, he becomes a special advisor to President Nasser, with the responsibility for the anti-Israeli propaganda and becomes a friend and collaborator of the Mufti.
His contribution to the local establishment is mainly in the form of an enormous quantity of writings, all of an anti-Jewish stamp and against the Western powers (3) , besides his declared availability towards anyone committed to the fight "against the world tyranny of Israel and the Zionists".
Some scholars attribute the birth of the historic denialism: that is, the anti-Zionist current of thought which denies or re-dimensions the Holocaust, accusing the Jews of constructing a false history to accelerate the creation of the State of Israel. These revisionist theories will be recuperated in the 80’s and 90’s by the most extreme Right and will have considerable diffusion all over Europe.

The conversions

The major exponent of the Italian pro-Islamic Right is, undoubtedly, Claudio Mutti (4) , follower of Guénon and Von Leers, in honour of whom, he will adopt the same name, Omar Amin, at the time of his conversion.
Also Mutti is polyglot and is a graduate in literature: he founded the publishing house, "the sign of the Greyhound " in the city of Parma, in the 70’s: Italian translator for Gheddafi and Khomein. He is recognized in Italy as one of the principle promoters of the Eurasian idea, that is, the need of a political unity from the Atlantic to the Pacific, with a strong religious component (the Eurasian-Islam project), which places itself in total opposition to Americanism, capitalism, high finance and democracy, in defence of the traditional cultures and a spiritual and transcendent vision of life.
In the most central position of Mutti’s publishing house catalogue, besides the complete works of Evola, the writings of Guénon and Von Leers, the complete production of works on Hitler and numerous texts on the Holocaust (5) are to be found, which causes him to be numbered among the most convinced exponents of the anti-Zionism and history revisionism in Italy.
A friend of Freda, he will take the side of the Palestinian Mujaheddin: vanguard militants in a fight for continental liberation to expel Americans and Zionists from the Eurasian and Mediterranean space.
In his and other conversions of those years, it is correct to underline the importance of the theoretical, philosophical and cultural approach - especially in relation to individuals with an extreme Right political background (more rarely of the extreme Left) - who tended to appreciate the deep penetration between political and religious thought, besides the aspects bound to traditionalism.
In this regard, Stefano Allievi writes that many have studied the phenomenon: "Islam as a religion which, programmatically, does not distinguish between "city of men" and "city of God", but, on the contrary, deliberately superimposes them, seems to constitute an ideal way to spiritualize a commitment which was first only social and political. It is not by chance that we find many of these converts in leadership roles and in the intermediate framework of the Islamic ‘associationism’: in the mosques and in the promotion of political initiatives closely tied to the "Islam of the immigrants".
In this context, we can cite as an example, the leading role played by Mutti in the area of the Murabitun organization. The World Movement of Western Moslems, the Italian seat being in Genoa and directed by an ex-member of the New Order, Pietro Benvenuto, also a convert, bearing the name of Abd El Kabir.
Further cited are the activities of the Neapolitan, Luigi De Martino, another ex-militant of the New Order, converted in 1985 with the name of Ammar, founder of the Shiite Islamic Association "Ahl Al Bait" (House of the People). The Ahl Al Bait was instituted at Naples following the wave of interest over the Khomeinist revolution, and it reports to the international network of the same name with seat in Tehran. Similar to the Hezbollah and Hamas organizations, which are principally dedicated to proselyte activities and cultural diffusion, its configuration is decidedly anti-Zionist and anti-Western.
Surrounding this organization are many Italian extreme Right converts: the same Roman association, "Imam al Mahdi" was recently created from a scission within the Ahl Al Bait and it, also, was inspired by a Right wing ex-militant converted to Islam, Marco "Hussein" Morelli.


During the course of the 80’s and 90’s, certain converted activists find a meeting ground around the Trapanese journal "Avanguardia", founded in 1983 by Leonardo Fonte, who was also the inspirational source of the connected "Political Community". Declared neo-Nazi and pro-Islam, supporter of the Muttian project "Eurasia-Islam", the review is created with the purpose of representing the "Avanguardia" as a ‘revolutionary party’ in "radical opposition to the system". From its inception, it will place at the centre of its project, Iran, considered as "anti-world bulwark", champion of anti-Americanism and anti-Zionism.
Starting from the assumption that "the enemy of our enemies is our ally", it will applaud, in time, the resistance of Palestine, Afghanistan, Iraq, Bin Laden, Hamas, Hezbollah and so on. As an example, we shall recall the satisfaction expressed by the journal for the position taken by the Iranian President, Ahmadinejad, quote "they gave a resounding slap to Israel, to all the Jewish plutocratic West and its arrogance".
The ‘anti-worldism’ " a more modern version of traditionalism and ‘anti-Westernism’ " represents in the propaganda of the extreme Right, the opposition to all that which is connected to the Western socio-political, economic and cultural model. Fighting the "approved project of a ‘single world government’, promoted by the Judaic-Masonic international finance and related to the interests of the USA-Israel pole", today, it places itself in competition with the fight against globalization carried forward by the Left antagonism.

The Gran Mufti in Berlino

Apart from the Trapanese journal, another important reference point of the ‘anti-worldism’ fight in the 90’s was the editorial group of the monthly Milanese publication "Orion", founded in 1991 in Milan by Maurizio Murelli (6) . The original supporter of the Muttian project "Eurasia-Islam" (7) , it then partially broke away, maintaining unaltered, nevertheless, the anti-worldism’ reasoning, criticizing the model and the USA-Israel politics and supporting anyone who opposed it.


As stated at the beginning, this ‘anti-world’, pro-Islam radical Right constitutes an important theoretical-cultural current of the extra-parliamentary Right, but of the elite minority, also because its opening towards the Moslem world meets with difficulty in the less cultured and more intransigent areas, stubborn in maintaining positions of refusal of the ‘foreigner’ or in defence of the Catholic religion in its less compliant, more traditional version.
However, this ideological proximity could undergo an acceleration, especially in an historical moment like the present one, marked by political crises where the 11th September and the successive Afghan, Iraqi, Lebanese occurrences ... have certainly contributed to rekindle anti-American, anti-Zionist feelings, and where Islam is seen always more as the last bulwark against the domination of the Judaic-United States imperialism. In this perspective, the Iran Shiite, the anti-Zionist, the anti-American and the revisionist rises to an inescapable reference point!

(1) Oswald Spengler,born in Blankenburg-am-Harz, on the 28th May, 1880, died in Monaco, Baviera, on 7th May, 1936, admirer of Nietzsche, becomes famous publishing between 1918 and 1922, “The Decline of the West”, in which he outlines his theory on the decadence and end Western civilization, to be followed by a, Asiatic-Mongolian “coloured civilization”.
(2) The esoteric-occult association, Thule (name derives from the mythical Atlantide, country of the Hyperboreans) has its inception at Monaco in 1918, inspired by von Sebotendorff, scholar of Cabbala, alchemy , the Rosicrucians, occultism and Dervish Sufism. He can be considered to all effects, the common matrix of the intellectual group which originated Nazism.
(3) The Italian translation published by Mutti’s “The sign of the greyhound”, of a conference held by Von Leers on the 15th of June, 1940, at the Keiser Wilhelm Institute, in Rome, entitled “England, the adversary of the European Continent”, has recently come out in Italy.
(4) Born in Parma on the 23rd May, 1946, close to Franco Freda, involved in the inquiries for the attacks claimed by the “New Order”, then for those in Rome by the “Popular Revolutionary Movement”, in the 70’s and in August of 1980 for the Bologna massacre. Founder and director of the Publishing House “Greyhound editions” of Parma, follower of Thiriart, of the national bolshevism; was a militant in “People’s Struggle”, and was converted to Islam in 1985.
(5) He will publish, among other things, “The Protocol of the Seven Sages of Sion, “Ebraicità-Ebraismo” and “Nazism and Islam”.
(6) Born in Milan on 12 October, 1954, returns to political activity after having served 19 years imprisonment for the killing of policeman, Antonio Marino, on the 12th April, 1973, in a police shoot-out at Milan. He is married to Alessandra Colla who, for a long period was director of the review, and likewise, the editorial production of the “Società Editrice Barbarossa” (SEB, Srl.) of Milan.
(7) Under the influence of Claudio Mutti, at the beginning, Morelli includes a fixed column dedicated to the Islamic Republic of Iran.