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Saturday 29 April 2023

Child Sacrifice and Defeat


Image: Unsplash

I was watching an older documentary on the destruction of Carthage by Rome the other day. It was creatively done, but was very biased in parts of its presentation. The presenter even began by admitting his pro-Carthage bias and that he was going to seek to prove that Carthage had been remembered wrong. In the documentary the presenter took the late 20th century line that Carthage was not as wicked as the histories of the Greeks and Romans say, and that the accusations about effeminacy and rampant child sacrifice were all just propaganda. The way he framed the discussion was that Rome was just an upstart society that was seeking to replace an older, wiser, but defeated empire, and Carthage had gotten an unfair bad reputation. 

He was wrong of course.

As interesting as his argument was, the archaeological, historical, and literary[1] evidence all point to Carthage having truly sacrificed its children in the fire. This practice was not unheard of amongst other Phoenician/Canaanite peoples and was observed, and then later copied, by the Israelites who conquered the land of Canaan, from which the ancestors of Carthage originated. We know for certain from various streams of evidence, that the popular view of ancient Carthage as decadent, wicked and depraved is the correct view. Despite the efforts of revisionist historians to argue otherwise. 

The presenter also made an interesting observation that he drew the wrong conclusion from. He noted that we do not find as much child graves as we should find in the later stage of Carthaginian society. The child mortality rate of societies in that era were quite high, and so there should be more infant graves. He sought to argue that the fact that we do not see many burials of children in later Carthage - the era where it began to decline and Rome began to rise - was proof that the burnt bones of babies found in tophets[2] were from the cremation of children who had died naturally, rather than from child sacrifice. But I would suggest they point to a much more grim reality.

Think about it. Infant mortality was very high in that era. So too was the mortality of women in childbirth. A nation that is sacrificing a percentage of their healthy children, in a day and age with a high infant mortality rate, is a nation which could only hasten its decline. So, what was more likely happening to Carthage in this period is that its population was declining, and the decreasing number of child graves and increasing number of sacrificed children in tophets both indicate this, and also help us understand why Carthage was declining so quickly. Their population was weakening and by their evil actions they were hastening the decline. This downward trend would have been sufficient to weaken their empire enough to make it vulnerable to an upcoming world power. Which is why an energetic and ambitious Rome was able to relatively quickly subdue and then annihilate an ancient empire that had once ruled the Mediterranean seas as an unsurpassed naval power.

This should cause every westerner to sit up in horror and recognize the situation we find ourselves in today. The West still has not yet faded completely, it still has its wealth and some of its strength and power. It is not a spent force yet. But population decline in Western nations is deeply entrenched. And while societies can survive a retraction in population growth and then bounce back, they cannot do this if they are facing conflict with equal or superior populations with a similar level of technology and the will to use it to rise up in power and conquer them. In other words, the West is in some serious trouble, because we are undermining our own ability to replace ourselves through births with wicked and foolish policies.  

We are now the declining power. We are Carthage. They burnt their children in the fires of some false god. Many of our children are killed in abortion clinics, or via post-conception birth control. These are not the only reasons our population is declining either. Western women are spending their best child-rearing years building careers and travelling the world, rather than having children like they would have in the past. Affluence, as much as evil is influencing this. Like many ancient civilisations, like Carthage, a combination of wealth and wickedness is white-anting our society.

This means, and this is important, that it would be basically suicide for our population to think about going to war with other nations who have curbed or avoided or overcome these trends[3]. Because we might have a strong first wave strength, maybe even a second wave strength, but within a generation this will decline massively. Like it did for Carthage, who, despite their wealth and power, found themselves overcome.

Padding this population decline with immigration is not going to solve this issue, but will only exacerbate it. You cannot rely on foreigners to reliably fight for your flag. Especially if you are facing their own home nations, which in some cases is very likely to happen. Ergo, Western nations are potentially, in reality likely, walking into a perfect storm of danger.

Our situation is not exactly like that of Carthage. The West is far more spread out now around the world and has its eggs in many baskets. But no nation which sacrifices its children in large numbers like we do can expect to stand for long against populations with larger numbers and more traditional family structures. And the whole transgender craze is going to accelerate this problem, by making even more people sterile. History warns us, will our leaders listen?


[1] Ancient Carthaginians really did sacrifice their children

[2] Burial places for sacrificed children.

[3] Note, for example, that China has solved their population issues and now encourages larger families, and traditional family values in many cases.

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