Until now, the world’s nation has fought for political and economical dominance. Before Second World War, the world was multi polar with many nations as super power. After this disastrous event, it transformed into the bipolar world with USA and USSR as its two super powers and the rest of the nations were followers of these two super powers in terms of ideologies and economic outlook. After cold war, another transformation occurred and the world changed into a unipolar with USA emerging as its sole super power and the rest aligning after it. (Huntington 1998)
This was the brief account of what the nations of the world have strived for so far; political, economical and ideological power. But in 1993, a philosopher, thinker and professor named Samuel P. Huntington came forward with a new version of world politics which will dominate the nations after cold war. The paper in which he expressed his phenomena was called “Clash of Civilization”. He categorically mentioned that in the post cold war world, the lust for political, economical and ideological power will vanish among nations and a new force will emerge which will guide the world politics.
He said that the desire for dominance of ones civilization will be the driving force for the rivalry among nations. He further explained the term civilization which has a broad meaning and it includes components such as culture, ethnicity and religion. (Huntington 1998) The topic of this essay asks about the positive influence of religion on international relations. Mr. Huntington and his like minded people have endorsed that the religion will be the dividing line between the nations.
Hence a very big philosopher and thinker have forethought the negative influence of religion on world’s politics. Now we will go in depth of his reasoning and explanation to come to conclusion whether his phenomena is valid and whether the religion will have a negative influence instead of positive. First of all we have to acquire and understand a very crucial idea about world politics. The idea is that conflict is inherent in the system. Conflict is the ongoing process and it will never come to an end. Conflict is considered as a cause of human evolution.
Without conflict human beings will cease to exist what they are. Here we have to prove that religion will not be the cause of conflict in international relations. And in order to prove this we have to understand the role of religion in world politics as described by Huntington. (Novak 2006) Since the beginning of human life, the world is filled with numerous conflict each one differing in its deadliness. After the treaty of Westphalia, there emerged the conflict among princess and monarchs each one trying to expand their economic strength, territory and army.
After the incident of French Revolution, the conflict started among nation states which remained till First World War after which the conflict of ideologies started. The US came with its notion of capitalism and USSR with communism. Both of these ideologies had stark differences and both super powers tried to gain dominance of its ideology. However this conflict ended after the disintegration of USSR and the acceptance of capitalism as the most rational ideology. (Novak 2006) As the world is progressing, the configuration of world politics and conflict is also changing.
Till recently, West has dominated the world and non westerners were only the subjects but now the non westerners have also developed and modernized themselves and they are now consolidating themselves to shape the world politics in future. The emerging economies of Asia, China and India have shown much progress to have a say in world politics. The east is also a dominant force and no union or association of world politics can exclude it from having membership or having equal say in global matters. (Blankley 2006)
We saw the end of conflict among princes, nations and ideologies. But since the conflict is the principal phenomena, now we are noticing the emerging conflict between western and eastern nations on terms of civilization which include religion as a major part. There will also be conflict among western or eastern nations if there is difference of culture, values, lifestyle and religion. The major civilizations of the world which will create the future cultural fault lines are Western, Confucian, Japanese, Islamic, Hindu, Slavic-Orthodox, Latin American and African civilization.
The question now comes in mind is why these civilizations will clash, the reasons are discussed below. (Bartley 1996) First reason is that civilization of a nation is composed of unique language, history, tradition, culture and most importantly religion. The civilization defines the way of life for the nation. It includes ones believes, values and ideals which are ingrained and are not easily compromised. The nations differ greatly in terms of civilizations. These differences are not soft enough to disappear or compromised in the near future.
Civilization forms ones identity and is more radical than political regime or ideology. (Bartley 1996) References Bartley, R. L. (1996). The Clash of Civilizations? The Debate. Foreign Affairs. Blankley, T. (2006). The West’s Last Chance: Will We Win the Clash of Civilizations? Regnery Publishing Inc. Cook, J. (2008). Israel and the Clash of Civilizations: Iraq, Iran and the Plan to Remake the Middle East . Pluto Press . Fukuyama, F. (2006). The End of History and the Last Man. Free Press. Hunter, S. T. (1998).
The Future of Islam and the West: Clash of Civilizations or Peaceful Coexistence? Praeger Paperback. Huntington, S. P. (1998). The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order. Simon & Schuster. Kennedy, P. (1989). The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers. Vintage. Novak, M. (2006). The Universal Hunger for Liberty: Why the Clash of Civilizations Is Not Inevitable. Basic Books. Petras, J. (2007). Rulers and Ruled in the US Empire: Bankers, Zionists and Militants. Clarity Press. Zakaria, F. (2009). The Post-American World . W. W. Norton & Co.