By Arnold Beichman, September 6 (!), 2001
Some years ago, the distinguished Harvard professor Samuel Huntington wrote:
“It is my hypothesis that the fundamental source of conflict in the new
world will not be primarily ideological or primarily economic. The great divisions
among humankind and the dominating source of conflict will be cultural … The
clash of civilizations will be the battle lines of the future.”
(Foreign Affairs, “The Clash of Civilizations,” Summer 1993.)
He later published a book titled, “The Clash of Civilizations and the
Remaking of World Order,” which expanded on this proposition.
With the end of the Cold War, he told an interviewer, “international politics is
moving out of its Western phase. From now on, the core of global politics will
be the interaction between the West and non-Western cultures.”
And so it has come to pass: a 2001 conference against racism was
retrofitted into a 1936 Nuremberg rally. C. S. Lewis once wrote a book titled
“The Abolition of Man.” Islam is writing a book, inspired by Durban, titled “The
Abolition of Israel.”
The World Conference Against Racism is really confirmation of the Huntington
thesis. The majoritarian power of Islamic culture in the United Nations — 22
Arab League members, 55 Organization of Islamic Conference members and
various pro-Arab delegations of the 113-member Non-Aligned movement has
been brought to bear.
In addition, the presence of the Non-Governmental Organizations, has
turned a regional conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Authority into a
global clash of civilizations and religions.
For more than a week a so-called debate about a Big Lie — alleged Israeli
genocide of Arabs when 1,000,000 Palestinian Arabs live in Israel with elected
representatives in the Knesset — has dominated worldwide media coverage.
U.N. members had agreed months ago that no countries would be listed by
name in the conference’s final document.
So only one country, Israel, is cited by name and indicted for alleged
racism. Why should Malaysia or Indonesia get excited about a small war
thousands of miles away from their shores? But the muezzin’s call in Gaza
resounds in Kuala Lumpur.
Unfortunately, Tibet’s cry for help against racism at the hands of
Chinese imperialism did not resound in Durban.
Arab “suicide bombing” is not merely the act of a would-be martyr. It
symbolizes the rejection of modernization, an inescapable component of
Judeo-Christian civilization which has evolved over the centuries into a world of
prosperous and democratic, multicultural polities. Islamic civilization, which
includes non-Arab Iran and its powerful theocrats, seeks to extirpate every
vestige of Judeo-Christian culture in the Middle East.
This is what a half-century of war and crisis since the founding of Israel
is really about.
Professor Huntington has found that one of the West’s weaknesses is “the
decay of Western liberalism in the absence of a cohesive ideological challenge
by a competing ideology such as Marxism-Leninism.”
“Fragmentation and multiculturalism,” he told the New Perspectives Quarterly,
“are now eating away at the whole set of ideas and philosophies which have
been the binding cement of American society. Over the longer term, the West is
going to have to learn how to adapt to a world in which, despite its current
preponderance in economic and military power, the balance of power is shifting
into the hands of others.”
In another article, “The West: Unique, Not Universal,” (Foreign Affairs,
November/December 1996) he warned against the belief that the world is
moving “toward a single, global culture that is basically Western.”
Such a belief is “arrogant, false and dangerous.”
“The peoples of the West,” he said, “must hang together, or they will hang
separately.” The immediate question is this: Is Israel included in peoples of the
West, or is Israel going to hang separately?