(Religion and Conflict).

Report
Territorial Conflicts and Religion
Holy War? Holy 5#)+!
CONFLICT
The 20th century was an era of global
conflict
With the end of the cold war, the threat
of global conflict has receded.
Local conflicts have increased, however,
in areas of cultural plurality.
Religion is an element of culture that
often leads to local conflict, especially
along inter- and intrafaith boundaries.
The spatial expression of one religion
can often come into conflict with that of
another.
RELIGION VS.
GOVERNMENT
Religious
groups may
oppose
government
policies that
seem to
promote social
change that
conflicts with
traditional
religious values.
RELIGION VS.
SOCIAL CHANGE
TALIBAN VS. WESTERN VALUES
The Taliban (translates as “the disciples”) took power
in Afghanistan in 1996.
The Taliban had run local religions schools since Islam
came to Afghanistan in the 7th century CE.
Locals preferred them to the corruption of the prior
government; the US as a strong opposition to Russia.
Once in control, they instituted Shariah law (Islamic
law) interpreted by their own strict views, enforced by
the Ministry for the Promotion of Virtue and the
Prevention of Vice.
They banned un-Islamic activities like western music,
flying kites, television and the internet.
They converted soccer stadiums to arenas for public floggings and executions.
Men were beaten for shaved beards and women were stoned from committing adultery. Homosexuals were buried alive, prostitutes were hung.
Thieves had hands cut off and women wearing nail polish had fingers cut off.
In 2001, Taliban forces set out to destroy enormous Buddhist statues carved at Bamiyan in the 2nd century CE.
Islamic scholars denounced the Taliban as poorly educated in their understanding of the Qur’an and Islamic Law and History.
In 2001, the US invaded Afghanistan, overthrew the Taliban and installed a new government, but Taliban has regrouped and resumed fighting.
RELIGION VS.
SOCIAL CHANGE
HINDUISM VS. SOCIAL EQUALITY
Traditional Hindu values have been under pressure since the
British colonized India in the 1800s.
Particularly under attack was the caste system.
When Aryan invaders came to India c.1500 BCE, they brought
with them a rigid, four tier caste system.
The Aryans reserved the four tiers for themselves, conquered
the indigenous Harappan civilization and made them a fifth tier
(harijans/dalits… the untouchables).
Over the centuries, these castes (Varnas) have broken into
thousand of subcastes (jatis), and the castes were kept
segregated in almost all aspects of life.
India officially abolished the untouchable caste and gave them
rights equal to other castes.
However, social awareness of castes still persists.
GOVERNMENT
VS. RELIGION
According to Karl Marx, “The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness.”
Therefore, Communist governments have often sought to abolish religion in their realms, especially Orthodox Christianity, Islam
and Buddhism in Eastern Europe and Asia.
ORTHODOX CHRISTIANTY AND ISLAM V. USSR
In 1721 Peter the Great linked the Russian Orthodox Church to the government.
The Patriarch of the church was replaced by a 12 member Synod appointed by
the czar.
After the Bolshevik Revolution in 1917, the Soviet communist government
pursued antireligious policies (eliminated church-state link in 1918).
All church buildings and property were nationalized and run by the gov. Some
churches were used for secular purposes. Other churches remained open, but
religion was not encouraged and attendance dropped sharply.
The fall of communism in the late 1900s brought a religious revival. Property
reverted to church ownership and attendance at religious services increased.
Former Soviet Republics in Central Asia were mostly Muslim: Kazakhstan,
Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan.
These countries are now trying to determine the degree to which religions will
figure in their legal systems
Just a reminder: that smaller region to the left is the Caucasus region, and it’s
considered a shatterbelt because the national boundaries don’t map onto the
cultural boundaries.
GOVERNMENT
V. RELIGION
BUDDHISM V.
SOUTHEAST ASIAN COMMUNISM
Buddhism came into conflict during the Vietnam wars (both the
French and US iterations).
Neither the communists, the French nor the US were particularly
sensitive to Buddhist peoples or interests.
US air raids destroyed many Buddhist shrines in Laos and
Cambodia, Vietnamese and Cambodians communists vandalized
others.
A number of Buddhist monks immolated themselves in protest of
various policies by both entities.
Communist China annexed Tibet and suppressed Buddhism in
Tibet and China, killing thousands of monks and causing the Dalai
Lama to flee to India.
The military junta that seized Burma and renamed it Myanmar
has also suppressed Buddhism there.
Angkor Wat in Cambodia
Current communist governments in SE Asia discourage religious
activities and allow many structures to decay.
RELIGION vs.
RELIGION
Religious conflicts are most likely to occur along boundary
lines between two religions on two
branches/denominations of one religion.
Interfaith boundary: the boundary line between regions
where two separate religions are the majority.
Intrafaith boundary: the boundary line between two
different branches or denominations of a single religions.
Religious fundamentalism also often causes or intensifies
religious conflict.
Fundamentalism: a form of a given religion that espouses a
literal reading of the scripture and strict adherence to
religious doctrine and dogma.
Doctrine: any official teaching/tenet of a religious group,
whereas dogma usually refers to the entire body of
doctrine.
Many groups see fundamentalism as the only way a religion
can defend itself against globalism of culture and economy.
Catholics riot during Protestant parade in Ireland
RELIGION vs.
RELIGION
Religious Wars in Ireland
A small
To
the north
number
andofeast
Catholics
of the island
in bothofthe
England
Republic
liesof
the
Ireland
islandand
of Eire.
Northern
Ireland decided to join the Irish Republican Army (IRA), a militant group of
The Republic
Irish
nationalists
of Ireland
dedicated
occupies
to achieving
the southern
Irish national
5/6 of the
unity
island
by whatever
and is 87%
Catholic.
means
necessary
The northern
(including
1/6 of
violence).
the island belongs to the United Kingdom and
is 46% Protest and 40% Catholic.
Their goal is to bring Northern Ireland into the Republic of Ireland.
All of the island was a British colony for centuries and was made a part of
the UKProtestants
Some
in 1801. in Northern Irelandthen decided to formmilitant groups of
their own, like the Ulster Defense Force (UDF).
Irish agitators pushed for independence throughout the 1800s, and in 1921,
it becamethe
Although
a self-governing
majority of people
dominion
in both
within
branches
the UK.
in Northern Ireland are
willing to live peacefully, extremists in both groups disrupt life and often also
Ireland
get
elected
declared
into office.
independence in 1937 and created itself as a republic in
1949.
Violence will continue as long at Protestants and Catholics remain
When Ireland
committed
to declared
their separate
independence,
causes. the majority Protestant population in
six northern counties voted to remain in the UK (which was itself
predominantly Protestant) rather than be in the predominantly Catholic
Republic of Ireland.
Since that point, Cathlics in Northern Ireland have often been discriminated
against and excluded from jobs and schools.
Catholics in Northern Ireland began protests in 1968, and since then more
than 3000 Catholics and Protestants have been killed in clashes.
RELIGION vs.
RELIGION
Religious Wars in the Middle East
Jews, Christians and Muslims have been fighting for 2,000 to
control the same small strip of land on the Mediterranean coast.
All three groups trace their origins to Abraham and the narrative
of the Hebrew Bible in Genesis, and all three religions have ties to
the same geographic area.
Judaism: An ethnic religion that makes a special claim to the
“Promised Land” that modern day Israel encompasses. Judaism’s
religious calendar is based on the agricultural cycle in Israel. Jews
were driven out of the area after the Romans burnt the temple In
Jerusalem in 70AD. (Romans called the area Palestine.)
Christianity: considers Palestine the Holy Land and Jerusalem the
‘Holy City” because of the land and the city’s ties to the life, death
and resurrection of Jesus. Most inhabitants of the area became
Christian when Christianity became the official religion of the
Roman Empire with Theodosius in 380AD.
Islam: Became the dominant religion in Palestine when the
Muslim army conquered the area in 7th century AD. Jerusalem is
a holy city in Islam because Muhammad was said to have
ascended into heaven from the Temple Mount there.
RELIGION vs.
RELIGION
Religious Wars in the Middle East The Crusades
The Crusades were a series of conflicts between Christians and Muslims
fighting for control of Palestine.
In 7th century AD, armies from the Arabian Peninsula (Arabs) captured most
of the middle east, including Palestine.
Most people in the Middle East subsequently became Arabic speaking
Muslims.
The Arab armies moved west across northern Africa, crossed the strait of
Gibraltar and invaded Europe through Spain in 711.
The Arabs conquered most of the Iberian peninsula and then crossed the
Pyrenees into France.
Charles Martel stopped the Arab advances at Poitiers, France in 732.
Arabs controlled Spain until 1492.
Ottomon Turks captured Ocnstantinople, the capita of the Eastern Roman
Empire in 1453 and spread into Eastern Europe as far as BosniaHerzegovina.
To recapture the Holy Land, European Christians launched a series of
campaigns spanning 150 years, winning and losing Jerusalem many times
during the years.
RELIGION vs.
RELIGION
Religious Wars in the Middle East Jews v. Muslims
The Ottoman Empire controlled Palestine from 1516 to 1917 when it was
defeated in WWI and Great Britain took control of the area.
Zionism is the philosophy that supports the world Jewry’s right to possess,
inhabit and govern the biblical land of Israel.
The British allowed some Jews to migrate to Palestine, but then restricted
immigration under pressure from Arab groups.
In 1947, The UN voted to partition Palestine into two independent states,
one Jewish and one Muslim with Jerusalem to be an international city.
The British withdrew from Palestine in 1948, the Jews declared an
independent state of Israel according to the UN resolution, and the
neighboring Arab Muslim states declared war.
In 1949, the combatants signed an armistice, re-dividing the area.
Israel then won three separate wars in the region in 1956, 1967 and 1973.
The most important of which was the 1967 war.
Please read carefully: the sections in your book on the Palestinian and Israeli
perspectives on the conflict.
Terms: PLO, Palestinian Authority, Fatah, Hamas, West Bank, Gaza Strip,
Golan Heights

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