Religion, violence and “holy wars”
AbstractThe author analyzes the impact of religion in current conflicts throughout the world. The main focus lies on the monotheistic religions, i.e. Judaism, Christianity and Islam, all of which have recently been reproached for potentially fostering the temptation to resort to violence. The article focuses on this accusation and departs from an analysis of the concept of “holy war” in the three religions. The article concludes with setting out a pragmatism of peaceableness highlighting that wars in the twenty-first century can neither be regarded as just, nor holy, nor clean and that absolute pacifism will not only be politically impossible but might as a political principle even be irresponsible.