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The Germans voted for Nazism.  Adolph Hitler was democratically elected Chancellor of the Third Reich.  What if the French – or any other “Christian” nation – elected a President to turn the country into an Islamic state ?  London has a mayor who is Muslim.  But England is not an Islamic state.  The France imagined by Michel Houellebecq, just a few years from now, in his 2015 novel “Soumission” (“Submission”), is.  Become a best-seller, it makes such a political sea-change credible – and terrifying.

The author is a master of the language and of his art as a novelist.  His fictional book is so credible and convincing that it sounds like his own autobiography and historical fact.  Marine Le Pen is defeated in the presidential election’s final run-off by Mohammed Ben Abbes, the candidate of his Muslim Federation.  Real names of current political figures and even T.V. journalists reinforce the apparent reality of the realization of what is for most of us our worst nightmare.  The book’s back-cover blurb accurately states that “this implosion, without upheaval, without real revolution, develops like a bad dream.”

The book is, yes, a wake-up call.  In the novel, inexorably and inevitably, the secular state, once so proud of its hard-won separation from religion, becomes a theocracy.  Do we really want to allow Islam, which means … “submission”, to rule our lives ?  “Tolle, lege”.  “Sapienti sat”.  You get my drift.