World View: Christians Versus Muslims in Central African Republic
- Christians versus Muslims in Central African Republic
- Who's at fault for the Holocaust?
- War and Peace
- Russia's Vladimir Putin calls Obama to discuss Ukraine
Christians versus Muslims in Central African Republic
Articles on current events in the Central African Republic (CAR) such
as the one I posted two days ago
often generate a great deal of commentary. Last year, Muslim Seleka
militias killed tens of thousands of Christians and drove 400,000 from
their homes. This year, Christian anti-balaka militias have
retaliated with vengeance, massacring hundreds of thousands of
Muslims and driving millions more from their homes -- so far.
Muslims are just 15% of CAR's population, and some anti-balaka leaders
are promising to kill every Muslim that doesn't flee the country.
This is a fact. I may not like this fact, and you may not like this
fact, but it's a fact nonetheless.
One response is to say that the Christians in CAR are just defending
themselves from the Muslims. I won't disagree with that, except to
say that anti-balaka leaders saying that they're going to kill all the
Muslims seems to me to cross the line from self-defense into genocide.
Another standard response is to say that the Christians in CAR aren't
really Christians. This is the same response often given to the fact
that millions of Christian Church-going Nazis attempted to exterminate
the Jews. According to this response, the Holocaust happened because
Hitler wasn't really a Christian. Well, my understanding is that if
you've been baptized in Christ, then you're a Christian, and that
there's no further litmus test. But OK, let's ignore that.
This response is very hard to defend, because you would also have to
claim that all those millions of church-going Nazis were also not
Christian. But OK, let's ignore that.
Question: How do you know that Hitler and the Nazis weren't Christian?
Answer: Because they perpetrated the Holocaust. So this is circular
reasoning. Christians didn't commit the Holocaust because Nazis
weren't Christians, and Nazis weren't Christians because they
committed the Holocaust. But OK, let's ignore even all those
OK, so let's just accept that explanation: Hitler and the Nazis
weren't Christian, because they perpetrated the Holocaust.
Who's at fault for the Holocaust?
But now you have another problem, because the same argument can be
turned against you. The Muslim jihadists are killing some Christians,
but they're mostly killing other Muslims -- millions and millions of
Muslims. The same is true of Bashar al-Assad's genocide against Sunni
women and children. You can claim that the Koran justifies these
killings, but it doesn't. The Koran may or may not justify killing
Christians (it's debatable) and other "infidels," but what the
jihadists and al-Assad are doing is killing Muslims -- and that's
clearly a violation of the Koran. And so the same reasoning
that people use to say Nazis weren't really Christians can be
used to say that the jihadists aren't really Muslims.
In other words, if Hitler wasn't a real Christian, then Osama bin
Laden wasn't a real Muslim, for the same reason.
And so, if you can't blame Christians for the Holocaust because
Hitler wasn't a real Christian, then you can't blame Muslims for 9/11,
because OBL wasn't a real Muslim.
Lots of people point to the fact that most massacres being conducted
today are by Muslims, albeit mostly to other Muslims. That's
certainly true. All you have to do is look at Pakistan or Syria, for
example, to see it happen.
But I think there's a more interesting question. Let's turn the
question around. Instead of asking why Muslims are most often
the perpetrators of massacres, let's ask instead why Muslims
are most often the victims of massacres. Muslims are the victims
of massacres by Muslims in Pakistan and Syria, by Buddhists
in Myanmar (Burma), and by Christians in Central African Republic.
What is there about this particular point in history that makes
Muslims the most massacred group in the world? From the point of view
of generational theory, that's a very interesting question. Muslims
are the most massacred people in the world today. Why is that?
Some people would say that the reason that Muslims are the most
massacred people in the world today is because a lot of the world is
angry for terrorist acts like 9/11. Once again, that reason would be
difficult to defend, because it doesn't explain why Muslims are
War and Peace
In his monumental book War and Peace, Leo Tolstoy recounts
Napoleon's invasion of Russia. But Tolstoy is completely stumped and
frustrated about why the war occurred at all, especially because the
people on both sides were Christians. Here's what he wrote:
It naturally seemed to Napoleon that the war was
caused by England's intrigues (as in fact he said on the island of
St. Helena). It naturally seemed to members of the English
Parliament that the cause of the war was Napoleon's ambition; to
the Duke of Oldenburg, that the cause of the war was the violence
done to him; to businessmen that the cause of the war was the
Continental System which was ruining Europe; to the generals and
old soldiers that the chief reason for the war was the necessity
of giving them employment; to the legitimists of that day that it
was the need of re-establishing les bons principes, and to
the diplomatists of that time that it all resulted from the fact
that the alliance between Russia and Austria in 1809 had not been
sufficiently well concealed from Napoleon, and from the awkward
wording of Memorandum No. 178.
It is natural that these and a countless and infinite quantity of
other reasons, the number depending on the endless diversity of
points of view, presented themselves to the men of that day; but
to us, to posterity who view the thing that happened in all its
magnitude and perceive its plain and terrible meaning, these
causes seem insufficient.
To us it is incomprehensible that millions of Christian men killed
and tortured each other either because Napoleon was ambitious or
Alexander was firm, or because England's policy was astute or the
Duke of Oldenburg wronged. We cannot grasp what connection such
circumstances have with the actual fact of slaughter and violence:
why because the Duke was wronged, thousands of men from the other
side of Europe killed and ruined the people of Smolensk and Moscow
and were killed by them.
Generational theory does provide some answers to these questions, and
it has nothing to do with religion. It has to do with being human.
Just as Christians can have inappropriate sex, they can also have
inappropriate wars. If humans did not have sex, then the human race
would die out. If humans did not have genocidal wars of
extermination, then the human race would not survive, because it's
only through wars of extermination that the strongest tribes,
societies, and nations become the leaders.
From the point of view of Generational Dynamics, these wars of
extermination are generational crisis wars. When one of these
horrific wars occurs, the generations of survivors vow to do
everything possible to keep anything like that from happening to their
children and grandchildren. They succeed in that, but when the
survivor generations die off, then the younger generations, with no
personal memory of the crisis war, have no motivation to keep it from
happening again. And so the next generational crisis war begins,
usually around 60 or more years after the end of the last one.
Going back to Central African Republic, the last generational crisis
war was the 1928-1931 Kongo-Wara Rebellion ("War of the Hoe Handle"),
which was a very long time ago, putting CAR today deep into a
generational Crisis era. There are probably no survivors left from
the Kongo-Wara Rebellion, and so it's not surprising at all that a new
war of extermination is breaking out in CAR today.
Russia's Vladimir Putin calls Obama to discuss Ukraine
The White House announced on Friday that Russian President
Vladimir Putin placed a phone call to U.S. President Barack
Obama to discuss a diplomatic resolution to the crisis in
Ukraine. According to the White House statement:
President Obama noted that the Ukrainian government
continues to take a restrained and de-escalatory approach to the
crisis and is moving ahead with constitutional reform and
democratic elections, and urged Russia to support this process and
avoid further provocations, including the buildup of forces on its
border with Ukraine...
President Obama made clear that [a diplomatic solution] remains
possible only if Russia pulls back its troops and does not take
any steps to further violate Ukraine’s territorial integrity and
sovereignty. President Obama reiterated that the United States
has strongly opposed the actions that Russia has already taken to
violate Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial
Russia issued its own statement:
Vladimir Putin drew Barack Obama’s attention to
continued rampage of extremists who are committing acts of
intimidation towards peaceful residents, government authorities
and law enforcement agencies in various regions and in Kiev with
impunity. In light of this, the President of Russia suggested
examining possible steps the global community can take to help
stabilize the situation. The two presidents agreed that specific
parameters for this joint work will be discussed by the Russian
and US foreign ministers in the near future.
This reads to me like a standard attempt to buy enough time so that
the world will forget what Putin is doing. By referring to the "continued
rampage of extremists who are committing acts of intimidation towards
peaceful residents," Putin is preparing a case for military action
in Ukraine and for not removing his troops from Ukraine's border.
He could order his troops into Ukraine next week and claim
that Obama didn't propose a way to protect "peaceful residents,"
so he had to do it.
We'll see if anything changes now. Politico
KEYS: Generational Dynamics, Central African Republic, Bangui,
Christians, Muslims, Seleka, anti-balaka, Hitler, Holocaust,
Osama bin Laden, Pakistan, Syria, Myanmar, Burma,
Leo Tolstoy, War and Peace, Russia, France, Napoleon,
Vladimir Putin, Ukraine
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