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A quarter of a century ago, Harvard’s Samuel Huntington unfurled his “Clash of Civilisations” thesis which seemingly became the working model for western, especially US, foreign policy strategists. In the wake of the fall of the Iron Curtain in 1989 and the end of the Cold War, the timing was maybe more than just fortuitous. After all he was also part of the US think tank that had conjured up the “modernisation” thesis after WWII that became the western blueprint to win the hearts and minds of the Third World in the Cold War that had just been declared.It would seem that Huntington has proven to be a prophet. As the book’s blurb explained, Huntington predicts not only how clashes between civilisations are the greatest threat to world peace but also how an international order based on civilisations is the best safeguard against war. More specifically, as ideological distinctions among nations during the Cold War have been replaced by cultural differences, world politics has been reconfigured. Across the globe, new conflicts – and new cooperation – have replaced the old order of the Cold War era.It might very well be a self-fulfilling prophecy. Huntington postulated “how the population explosion in Muslim countries and the economic rise of East Asia are changing global politics. These developments challenge Western dominance, promote opposition to supposedly “universal” Western ideals, and intensify inter-civilisation conflict over such issues as nuclear proliferation, immigration, human rights, and democracy. The Muslim population surge has led to many small wars throughout Eurasia, and the rise of China could lead to a global war of civilizations.Huntington offers a strategy for the West to preserve its unique culture and emphasises the need for people everywhere to learn to coexist in a complex, multipolar, multi-civilisational world.” It is argued by Huntington that the Western movement for Universalism will only lead to confrontation with non-western cultures. Western Universalism is advocacy of western values including democracy, freedom of speech, and human rights in an attempt to universalise them throughout the world.One reason that this promulgation of “universalistic” values may be destabilising is that while some who preach such “universalism” may be benign, others may not be of like mind. The latter movements, such as the “religious freedom” disguise propagation of fundamental Christianity through proselytising people of other religions and cultures can alienate them from their native cultures. They can also teach them to berate their native cultures although many may not have even comprehended the new values. There is resistance in the world against alienating people from their native cultures and weakening integrity of the races.The main issue with Huntington’s thesis, however, is his conflating of Christianity with modernity. It goes against the history of church and development of modernism in Europe. Modern advances in sciences and scientific and even industrial development as well as every modern intellectual thought came by resisting the influence of Christianity. Science and Church stand opposite to one another in modernisation. It must be accepted that almost every culture/religion can modernise without having to westernise. It is from this perspective, for instance, we must view the changes that are sweeping the Islamic world. The resurgence of the Islamicists as not definitionally “non-modern”.Finally, there can be universalism not of the kind advocated by the fanatics. The West pushed its form of universalism as the basis of human rights protection through non-State organisations. It is possible to conceive of Universalism based on Scientific Humanism and accepting the best of all cultures on a rational basis. This is what Mahatma Gandhi meant when he called himself a Hindu, a Muslim and also a Christian, not that there is such a cult that integrates a composite of all three. What made man “Human” are the innate instincts of kindness, tolerance, mutual love and sense of fairness inherent in all human beings, prior to the birth of all of “religions”.It is unfortunate that the Trump presidency is pandering even more single-mindedly to Huntington’s thesis.