<br><div><span class="gmail_quote">On 1/26/06, <b class="gmail_sendername">Samantha Atkins</b> <<a href="mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org">email@example.com</a>> wrote:</span><blockquote class="gmail_quote" style="border-left: 1px solid rgb(204, 204, 204); margin: 0pt 0pt 0pt 0.8ex; padding-left: 1ex;">
<br>How come? The Crusades and various Israel-Arab conflicts were paltry<br>little affairs compared to the major wars of the last century. The<br>historical record doesn't make your case. Now, if we decide to<br>declare an all out conflict targeted at one or more major religions,
<br>that would be a dangerous and foolish thing to do. Let's not go there.</blockquote><div><br>Samantha, I agree with your points, sp. regarding the magnitude of the conflicts and how it would be undesirable to "make war" on religion. However, if you have been watching recent news programs on Al Queda it seems clear that they *have* declared "war" on the
U.S. and that seems *largely* for ideological (faith) based reasons. As far as I can tell in my limited reading on Islam (mostly in Wikipedia) suggests there is a substantial amount of support behind bringing back the Caliphate. [I believe the debate over who the Caliph should be and what power/authority they have is a significant part of the Sunni/Shia split so it is already the source of significant animosity in the Middle East.] One could speculate that the entire debate over allowing Iran to develop the means for creating nuclear weapons revolves around the problem of allowing nuclear weapons to be under the control of irrational people (unless you view someone who claims the holocaust is a myth as a "rational" thinker). The question would be how dangerous to transhumanist or extropic goals is someone having control over nuclear weapons, lacking the Pope's current scruples (mind you Popes were not always particularly scrupulous) and possibly wanting to regain a position of combined faith-based & political power which has largely been missing from the world for ~300+ years?
<br></div><br>I don't know enough about the causes of WWI and WWII to know the extent to which they were (a) driven by faith; (b) driven by survival interests; or (c) driven by power hungry megalomaniacs (which could be interpreted as "personal" survival interests). I would speculate based based on limited knowledge that (c) was the primary cause in those cases.
<br><br>[If we go any further down this path we should probably change the Subject heading since it isn't directly related to "intelligent design"]<br></div><br>Robert