Does Islam Pose a Threat to the West?
Perceptions- Journal of International Affairs, Vol. 5, No. 2, pp. 63-76, June-August 2000
14 Pages Posted: 22 Mar 2010
Date Written: March 19, 1998
Since the Iranian Revolution of 1979, the issue of Islam and of its supposed challenge to the West has become a matter of enduring international preoccupation. In this context, both Muslim and Western statesmen and scholars have presented contradictory statements and opinions which have revolved around Huntington’s concept of "clash of civilisations". In the view of these differing opinions, the present study will carefully analyze the nature of ongoing relations between the East and West, and explain whether Islam poses an actual threat to the Western world beyond oft-repeated fictions and stereotypes. In contrast to Samuel Huntington's thesis, the paper will demonstrate that the fundamental source of conflict in the New World Order is still national interest and balance of power rather than cultural or religious differences, and this does not appear likely to change in a predictable future.
Keywords: Clash of civilizations, Islam, terrorism, orientalism
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