The readings under consideration dwell upon the nature of conflicts on an international scale with an emphasis on the confrontation between Western and Eastern societies. The authors address the viewpoint that Islam is one of the major causes of conflicts which took place in the world lately (including 9/11 and other terroristic attacks).
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However, the authors also claim that religion has little to do with the real causes of numerous wars. The researchers provide other reasons. Thus, they claim that resources and power have been the only reasons for various conflicts. The authors also note that religion has become one of the “banners” under which people could try to pursue their goals (chase for resources or power).
The major point of the both readings is that the authors claim that Islam (or any other religion) cannot be regarded as a cause of wars and conflicts, as the real reason is chase for resources and power. This viewpoint is manifested in the following sentences:
Without Islam, the face of the Middle East still remains complex and conflicted. Struggles over power, territory, influence, and trade existed long before Islam arrived. (Fuller 48)
The sentences mentioned above are critical for both readings as they reveal the major ideas of the two works. Islam in this passage stands for any religion that has ever existed in the world. The authors rightfully note that people often use such notions as religion, identity, race, ethnicity, etc. to win more power over others.
The authors claim that conflicts should be regarded as an inevitable part of the human society. Interestingly, Said provides a possible explanation why religion (Islam, to be more precise) is often regarded as a cause of a conflict: there is a “downright ignorance” which involves “presuming to speak for a whole religion or civilization” (Said n.p.).
The authors depict cases when groups of fanatics started conflicts pursuing their goals. Many people tend to conclude that people sharing the same religion (or any other traits) can act in the same way as those fanatics. Therefore, numerous prejudices arise in that way.
The sentences quoted above do not simply advocate Islam, but reveal major causes of conflicts. Likewise, the papers under consideration deal with some real causes of conflicts. These reasons for aggression are power, territory, natural resources, etc. The authors articulate the idea that people often confront each other to win more resources.
The passage cited enumerates the major causes of conflicts. Apart from enumerating the major reasons for conflicts, the passage also reveals another important point of the two readings, i.e. conflicts have taken place since the creation of first human societies (tribes, families, groups, etc.). The Middle East in the passage cited stands for any society (civilization, ethnicity, etc.).
The two authors claim that any society is complex and conflicted. The authors’ advocacy is also revealed in this passage. The authors try to destroy prejudice about Islam and the Middle East as they continually repeat that all societies are characterized by confrontation.
Admittedly, September, 11 is not the only instance when many innocent people died. There have been numerous wars and military conflicts. The researchers mention some of these conflicts in their works. Finally, they argue that such conflicts will not cease to exist in future as humans are not likely to change their very nature.
Fuller, Graham E. “A World Without Islam.” Foreign Policy January/February 2008: 46-53. Print.
Said, Edward W. “The Clash of Ignorance.” The Nation. www.thenation.com, 4 Oct. 2001. Web.