• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

How can we best understand the role of religion in foreign policy?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Section C. (8) How can we best understand the role of religion in foreign policy? In order to best understand the role of religion in foreign policy, one needs to acknowledge that religion does play a role in foreign policy. However, the role religion plays in international relations is often overlooked. This omission of such an important factor that influences international politics in so many ways and on so many levels is detrimental and should be addressed (Fox, 2001:73). Religion influences international politics in varied ways. The phenomenal role of religion in foreign policy is not new or in dispute. Fox purports that religion, in more ways than one, is tied to other issues that distinctly influence international politics. There is a link between religion and nationalism, totalitarianism, political regimes, political opinions and attitudes, ethnicity, issues of identity, the process of globalization, terrorism, political culture, attitude towards war and peace, and the politics of specific states (Fox, 2001:72). We can best understand the role of religion in foreign policy by examining the influence that religious beliefs and views have on the decision making process. ...read more.

Middle

For example, the Islamic state of Iran demonstrating a direct link with religion and foreign policy criticizes and refers to the US government as infidels. Also, in the case of the religious Taliban regime, the US refused to accept the Taliban as the legitimate government of Afghanistan and accused them of abusive actions. Third, many local religious issues and phenomena, including religious conflicts, spread across borders or otherwise become international issues. For example ethno religious conflicts like those in the former Yugoslavia, Sri Lanka, the Kashmir province of India, and Israel spread to include outside governments and agencies such as the UN. There is also increasing evidence of transnational religious groups that have no relation with the nation-state bonding together. For instances Sunni Muslims in various Arab states in the Middle East (Iraq, Saudi Arabia etc) are allying with each other. The assertion that modernization will lead to the decline of religion is perhaps ironic because scholars often suggest that modernization actually has led to a resurgence of religion (Fox, 2001:56). ...read more.

Conclusion

Unlike his Iranian counterpart Ali Hoseini Khameni who strongly believes that there should be no separation between church and state. Moreover, as Spiegel states, religion indeed affects a leaders decisions and policies put forward, societal attitudes certainly play a role in influencing political leaders...some presidents, especially those from the south, have been affected by a messianic view of the Middle East (Spiegel, 2001:242). While it is not clear that religion was ever solely a domestic issue, it is currently an issue that crosses borders and accordingly is an international issue since many local religious and ethno-religious conflicts often reach international dimensions. While the efforts to make governments more religious may seem like a local issue, they often prove not to be the case in the long term. For example, in the case of Iran and Afghanistan in that, successful efforts to transform governments can change not only domestic policies, but also foreign policies. The role religion plays in international relations is often overlooked. Nonetheless, religion does play an important role in international relations. Religion is often tied to other issues that distinctly influence international politics. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Religion in the Media section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Religion in the Media essays

  1. Religion in the media

    The director's use of sound also plays a part in how the BBC deals with the issue of euthanasia. Inside the room the only sound is Dot and Ethel talking. However in the background the director uses diagetic sounds such as people talking in the market square and trains passing so show that although Ethel is dying, life goes on.

  2. Assess the sociological for / against view of secularisation occurring.

    Although Roy Wallis (1984) believed that there was a decline in new religious movements in the late 1970s and early 1980s, more recent figures suggest that they have been growing. Amongst established sects, Jehovah's Witnesses' membership rose from 62,000 in 1970 to 116,000 in 1990 and 131,000 in 1995.

  1. Discuss the merits of theories of secularisation with regard to religion in modern Britain

    in any society, a "natural" or "expected" consequence will be a decline in the organisational role of religious institutions. Thus, if we see religious institutions in terms of the ideological role of the Church as an organiser of knowledge about the world, it is evident that this role must be

  2. Is There A Decline In Religion...In Today's Society?

    Explain in your own words whether or not you believe there is a decline in religion... Thank You for your co-operation Questionnaire I am an A Level Sociology student. I am carrying out a survey to find out what your views on secularisation are (decline in religion).

  1. What do the grounds and buildings of Wimpole Hall tell us about the owners?

    The guests are shown around the house like most typical owners would do. The viewer can see the family portraits on the wall. From a site visit at Wimpole Hall, I can tell this aspect is reliable. The chapel was inside the house that is like Wimpole Hall.

  2. A - Level sociology

    if they are not very religious this may cause them embarrassment, so this is why it was very paramount I gained consent. The main concept to be operationalised here is religiosity. I am trying to see if religion amongst British Pakistanis has declined.

  1. How helpful is Wimpole Hall as a source in helping us understand the religious ...

    The exterior of Wimpole Hall and the surrounding grounds immediately give clues about the religious and social attitudes of the rich. For the owners, it was all about conspicuous consumption. They showed their wealth in every way possible, and at times led their visitors to infer that they were wealthier than they really were.

  2. Why did the Taliban refuse to give up bin laden? Why did they treat ...

    According to them, it is their duty to protect bin laden because he came there to seek protection from Taliban. Another reason the Taliban refuse to give up bin laden is because of family connection. One of the bin laden's children has married with one of the Omar's children.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work