Islam and the Clash Term Paper

Pages: 6 (2254 words)  ·  Style: APA  ·  Bibliography Sources: 4  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Drama - World

More precisely, the author makes reference to the clear confrontation between the Western and the "so-called terrorists." Therefore, it is argued that the difference between the two sides is not necessarily determined by the significant gap between civilizations but rather by the historical background the relations between the groups have in terms of colonial experiences. In this sense, the historical legacy of the colonial period, when all states on the African continent, in the Middle East were at one point the colonies of a Western power. This attracted certain reluctance in terms of accepting and dealing with cultural differences such as the one between the Western image of religion and the Islamic one.

At the same time however, there are certain cultural differences that do not make applicable the belief that democratic principles as perceived by the Western can be feasible to the Middle East. This is not due to any historical background, but rather to a consideration of traditions and cultural and civilizational identity.Download full Download Microsoft Word File
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By comparison, one of the most significant sources that provide elements both from Huntington's theory and from his opponents is the Letter to America from 2002 in which Osama bin Laden underlines the core differences between the Islam and the Western world and justifies the actions taken against the Americans as exponents of the Western world. These arguments include political reasons such as the constant support provided by the U.S. To Israel at the clear and violent disadvantage of the Palestinian population. Moreover, the attitude of the American presence in Iraq is further criticized. At the same time though, he also points out the clear cultural differences between the Americans and the Islamic with reference such as "You are a nation that permits the production, trading and usage of intoxicants. You also permit drugs, and only forbid the trade of them, even though your nation is the largest consumer of them" (Osama bin Laden, 2002). This also comes to point out the wide perceived differences in terms of culture and interpretation of political actions and steps.

However, an alternative approach points to U.S. involvement in the Middle East as the primary cause of the attitude of majority of the people of the region towards the U.S. Baxter and Akbarzadeh emphasize, for example, two elements of the U.S. foreign policy that dealt a blow to the country's relations with the Middle East: the theory of pre-emption, applied by the U.S. Government, and the invasion of Iraq. In terms of the latter, the U.S. intentions of democratizing the country, with a large amount of U.S. aid distributed, did not reverberate with the Arab communities, especially since the security situation on the ground significantly deteriorated. The Arab discontent was obvious after the invasion and throughout the period when U.S. troops were stationed on the ground.

Concluding, Samuel Huntington's perception on the threats after the end of the Cold War focused on the potential the cultural differences might have on providing new incentives for wars, other than the ones seen during the Cold War. His argument related to the clashes of civilization is based on the clear differences that exist between cultures and the imminent development of economies and social environments that would enable more frequent contact and thus a multitude of potential occasions for clashes. Others however consider Huntington to be only partially right and state that culture is an aspect that can be negotiated and adapted, while Osama bin Laden viewed this confrontation between the United States and Islam as being rooted in historical, religious, and civilizational considerations. Taking all this into account, the reason for the confrontation between the West and the Islamic world can be seen to have a multitude of factors, from the inherited cultural and historical background to the modern day acceptance or lack of democracy and rule of law as per the Western percepts.

Works cited

Baxter, Kylie; Akbarzadeh, Shahram. 2008. "U.S. Foreign Policy in the Middle East." Routledge.

Huntington. S. 1993."The Clash of Civilizations?" Foreign Affairs, Summer.

Inglehart, Ronald, and Norris, Pippa. "The True Clash of Civilizations." Foreign Policy, Mar/Apr2003, Issue 135

Krishna, S. 2008. Globalization and post colonialism. Hegemony and resistance in the twenty first century. Rowman, Littlefield Publishers, New York.

Observer Worldview. 2002. Bin Laden's 'letter to America'. Available at,3858,4552895-102275,00.html [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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APA Style

Islam and the Clash.  (2011, December 16).  Retrieved June 14, 2021, from

MLA Format

"Islam and the Clash."  16 December 2011.  Web.  14 June 2021. <>.

Chicago Style

"Islam and the Clash."  December 16, 2011.  Accessed June 14, 2021.