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Comments Of Huntington's "The Clash Of Civilizations"

1183 words - 5 pages

Samuel P. Huntington's paper "The Clash of Civilizations" defines the shifting of causes for friction between nations. He describes the changing of the guard, between secular ideological friction, such as democracy versus communism, to cultural and religious reasoning. Huntington's hypothesis is based heavily on examples of recent struggles between civilizations all over the world. I agree with Huntington's hypothesis because it is evident that since the fall of the "Iron curtain" culture and religion have replaced ideas as the fundamental instigators of conflict. This is also evident citing specific examples from the middle-east, the surrounding areas and from citing examples of conflict ...view middle of the document...

The Americans saw this as an expansion of Communism and entered the war by backing the Vietnamese in the south. The result was a war fought, not because of any land or resources or even an event, but rather over ideas. After the fall of the Soviet Union and the "democratization" of Russia and the newly independent nations, there remains only one super power in the world - The United States of America. Thus, there is no one strong enough to counter the ideas of the United States, therefore the shift for struggle and conflict has shifted from ideas to identity. This shift is cultural and religion, it puts people of the same nation but of different ethnic groups against each other. Or it can unite several nations of the same ethnic group in a struggle against another nation of a different ethnic group. Such is the case of the Gulf War. A war fought over natural resources for some and for others it was a war of Islam against the encroachment of the United States onto Arab soil."This warfare between Arabs and the West culminated in 1990, when the United States sent a massive army to the Persian Gulf to defend some Arab countries against aggression by another". It is evident that United States went to fight this war to preserve its self interests. Most predominately were the Kuwaiti oil reserves that the United States depends on. On the other side of the issue, Saddam Hussein turned the conflict into a call to arms for the nation of Islam to rise against the American invaders. In other words, he changed the war from one of resource acquisition to a cultural and religious one. It is quite obvious that the United States only wanted to protect the oil, they had no desire to fight another crusade. Saddam Hussein knew that he was fighting a losing battle, so with some clever marketing, he painted a picture to his Arab neighbors showing the nation of Islam rising against the Americans. They bought it and if not officially, then unofficially supported Hussein. "This centuries old military interaction between the West and Islam is unlikely to decline. It could become more dangerous. The Gulf War left some Arabs feeling proud that Saddam Hussein had attacked Israel and stood up to the West. It also left many feeling humiliated and resentful of the West's military presence in the Persian...

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