Category: International Politics

Jihad and Justice: Western Pluralism and Islamic Exclusivity

In the foregoing discussion of similarities and differences between Christian and Islamic political and just war theory there is one distinction that should immediately appear to be in conflict with the United Nation’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the...

/ October 12, 2007

Jihad and Justice: Pluralism and Western Values

Both Christianity and Islam are large and powerful religious forces in today’s world—forces powerful enough that they have caught the attention of the current ruling class, Western society. Both Christianity and Islam have certain ideals and goals, both have an...

/ October 8, 2007

Jihad And Justice: Contrasting Views

The primary difference between Christian and Islamic theories of statehood lies in the relationship between temporal and spiritual duties and by extension, temporal and spiritual authorities. Christian political theory has left open the possibility for separation between these two authorities,...

/ October 5, 2007

Jihad and Justice: The Two Territories

Islamic theology and political theory makes use of a distinction comparable to Augustine’s city of God and city of man. In Islam, this is the distinction between dar al-islam and dar al-harb. These two terms mean the house (or territory)...

/ October 1, 2007

Jihad and Justice: Augustine's Citizens

Besides distinguishing between two cities: the city of God and the city of man, Augustine also pays close attention to the differences between the members of these two cities. By examining the nature of the populace once can gain a...

/ September 28, 2007

Jihad and Justice: The Two Cities

The conception of just war and its relationship to the state is indispensable in both Christian and Islamic political thought. Since both Christians and Muslims set up right authority as a condition for just war, and further, they take this...

/ September 24, 2007

Jihad and Justice: Islamic Just War Theory, Part 2

Just like Christian just war theory, Muslim scholars have formulated three very similar conditions under which a just war may be waged. Earlier this week we saw that the first condition for just war is that it be prosecuted by...

/ September 21, 2007

Jihad and Justice: Islamic Just War Theory, Part 1

Due to the importance of unity among the believers in Islam, legitimate authorization of war is imperative. The Islamic conception of the ideal government has one ruler (the deputy, or khalifa) at its head. This was modeled most perfectly in...

/ September 17, 2007

Jihad and Justice: The Islamic Context

Before examining the Muslim conception of just war and jihad, let’s take a look at the religious context that has shaped the development of Islamic political theory. Islam is primarily a religion of orthopraxy; it emphasizes the importance of acting...

/ September 14, 2007

Jihad and Justice: Christian Just War Theory, Part 2

Earlier this week I introduced two major contributors to Christian just war theory—Augustine and Aquinas. Both of these men agree that a war can be just only when: it is prosecuted by a legitimate authority, is embarked upon for the...

/ September 7, 2007