At present, the air is vibrating with negative religious energies, which the shocking events of September 11 released. Whether it is Djerba (Tunisia), Bali (Indonesia) or Moscow, criminal terrorists abused and abuse a religion such as Islam to legitimize mass murder and to glorify suicide. Week after week, Israelis and Palestinians add new victims to the horrifying list of murder and counter murder. Muslims all over the world experience attacks as never before, with claims that they belong to a religion of violence and enemy destruction. In a first reaction, the American president speaks of a ‘crusade’, and afterwards he has to visit a mosque in order to show clearly that America is not fighting against a religion but rather against terrorists. Prime Minister Blair speaks of a battle against ‘evil’ and uses apocalyptic – dualistic models of interpretation: either – or, for us – against us, now – never. There is no question: the air is vibrating with religiously charged political energies. A second Gulf War seems immanent – with disquieting consequences for the Western and the Islamic world.
Karl-Josef Kuschel, Ute Stamm, Chadigah M. Kissel and Jonathan Magonet
Austrian Rabbis Justify the First World War
Marsha L. Rozenblit
During the First World War Austrian rabbis played a major role in constructing a meaningful justification for the war that enabled both soldiers and those on the home front to endure the bloody conflict. Because Austria's main enemy in the first two years of the war was Russia, the 'evil empire' that persecuted its Jews, Austrian Jews, and rabbis in particular, saw the war as a just and holy war to liberate the Jews of Austrian Galicia, occupied by the Russian army at the beginning of the war, and also those of Russia itself. The war thus was a war of revenge for Kishinev; that is, for the pogroms in Russia. Such a definition of the war meant that Jews could fight both as loyal, patriotic citizens of Austria and also for a specific Jewish cause at the same time. In their sermons and writings, rabbis cogently expressed this wartime ideology, which persisted even after the Central Powers defeated Russia. Then rabbis, indeed Jewish spokesmen in general, understood the war in terms of guaranteeing the survival of the Habsburg Monarchy which protected the Jews from anti-Semitism and the dangers of nationalism.
One characteristic of ‘the new wars’ is that they are often about identity politics, i.e., the quest for power is couched in terms of exclusion and inclusion of people in various groups. But although wars and violence can be explained with reference to ethnicity, i.e., cultural factors, it must also be taken as a language with which other things—economic, material, and political—are being addressed. First, ethnicity is a relational concept that explains such relationships as ethnic. But although it is imagined, it is real in terms of mobilizing individual people on the bases of a history of common origin that people take to be true. Secondly, ethnicities are not remnants of the past but entities continuously being re-created and shaped within contemporary realities. Hence, colonialism helped pin down relationships, and thereby make them basis for continuous new elaborations about identities, and also ordering them in new systems of hierarchy, creating new elites based on ethnic belonging that play key roles in today’s developments. Thirdly, we should also note that in socalled ethnic wars, civilians are targeted because the aim is to clear areas of people who do not ‘belong.’ We see this clearing of areas used as a strategy, for instance, in order to control key strategic resources. And as the war economy is no longer controlled by a state alone, but rather is decentralized and based on exploiting specific resources through outright plunder, black market trade, and external support, even enemies are not what they used to be.
The Legacy of the 1917 Espionage Act in the United States
enemies and as “giving … Aid and Comfort” to the enemy. Notable legislation regulating speech included the passage of the Alien and Sedition Acts in 1798 during an undeclared war with France, 3 the suspension of habeas corpus during the American Civil War
Refugees, Resentment and the Clash of Solidarities
for a democratic future, the economic crisis of 2008 and refugee crisis of 2015 cracked the bonds of solidarity and heralded a shrinking of the political to that of the friend versus the enemy, the citizen versus the foreigner. When a relationship is
Edited by Raili Marling
. Marta Havryshko’s article continues a similar line of reasoning, but zooms in on a specific and neglected aspect of the Ukrainian nationalist underground, that of intimate relations between Ukrainian women and men identified as enemies. Her starting
British Perceptions of Refugees 1933–1940
declared between Germany and Britain, the immigrants became not just refugees, but also enemy aliens. Prohibited areas were created where no enemy alien could reside, but there were no plans for wholesale internment. Tribunals were established in order to
Carl Schmitt and Jean-Jacques Rousseau on a Key Question in Democratic Theory
), which connects directly to the friend-enemy dichotomy in his Concept of the Political ( 1996) and the therein formulated ideal of homogeneity ( Salzborn 2011 ). For Schmitt, democracy is a “rule of the people” characterized not by individuals
On Democracy and Its Other
Marta Nunes da Costa
his friends/enemies distinction, this section exposes the dangers of reconstructing (popular) sovereignty by promoting a populist project that aims at reconstructing the people as ‘One’. I conclude with a critical reflection upon the tense relationship
The Israeli Television Series Fauda
Nurith Gertz and Raz Yosef
from terror attacks, IDF soldiers embody national unity, protect it in the name of the future, attack the enemy-to-come in its name, and are attacked by that same enemy in retaliation. Thus, the protagonists, in fact, constitute the spearhead of this