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ANTON RAUSCHER (Hrsg.

Nationale und kulturelle Identitt


im Zeitalter der Globalisierung

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Soziale Orientier ung


Verffentlichungen der Wissenschaftlichen Kommission
bei der Katholischen Sozialwissenschaftlichen Zentralstelle
Mnchengladbach

In Verbindung mit

Karl Forster Hans Maier Rudolf Morsey


herausgegeben von

Anton Rauscher

Band 18

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Nationale und kulturelle Identitt


im Zeitalter der Globalisierung
Herausgegeben von

Anton Rauscher

asdfghjk
Duncker & Humblot Berlin

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Bibliografische Information Der Deutschen Bibliothek


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Daten sind im Internet ber <http://dnb.ddb.de> abrufbar.

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Inhaltsverzeichnis
I. Die Herausforderung der Globalisierung
Kulturelle, religise und ethische Aspekte
National Identity
By Jude P. Dougherty . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

13

Die Europisierung der Welt


Von Jrgen Schwarz . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

25

Mistaken National Identity: Samuel Huntington's Who Are We?


By Kenneth D. Whitehead . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

39

Culture and the Individual: The Psychological Impact of Globalization


By Gladys Sweeney . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

55

Multiculturalism within the Gates


By Kenneth L. Schmitz . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

77

Globalization, Religion, and Cultural Identity


By Thomas R. Rourke . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

93

Zwischen Projekt Weltethos und The Clash of Civilizations. Religise Identitt im Zeitalter der Globalisierung
Von Richard Schenk . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 111

II. Strukturprobleme der internationalen Ordnung


What is Europe? Europe and America in Global Context. An American Vision
By Michael Novak . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 127
Robert Schuman Blessed Father of Europe
By Patrick Quirk . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 141
Leibniz, Vico and Alternative Modernities
By Virgil Nemoianu . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 155
Ist Kant fr oder gegen den Weltstaat? Reflexionen zu seiner Schrift Zum ewigen Frieden
Von Karl-Heinz Nusser . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 169

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10

Inhaltsverzeichnis
III. Aktuelle Fragen zur Friedensethik

Die kirchliche Friedenslehre vor neuen Problemen


Von Wolfgang Ockenfels . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 185
A Spectrum of Opinion: American Catholics and the War in Iraq
By Russell Shaw . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 197
War der Irakkrieg ein bellum iustum?
Von Manfred Spieker . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 211

IV. Zur konomischen Dimension der Globalisierung


Globalisierung der Wirtschaft und Kompetenz der Manager
Von Eduard Gaugler . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 237
Cultural Challenges Facing Multinational Corporations
By Nicholas T. Pinchuk . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 247
Globalisation and Poverty what do we know?
By Jrg Althammer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 269
Legitimationen des Sozialstaats aus einer christlichen Sicht
Von Elmar Nass . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 281

V. Christliche Verantwortung in Gesellschaft und Politik


On Citizen and Conscience: Political Participation in Gaudium et Spes
By John P. Hittinger . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 299
Die Katholiken in der pluralistischen Gesellschaft
Von Anton Rauscher . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 317
Historische berlegungen zum Staats- und Demokratieverstndnis der deutschen
Katholiken
Von Winfried Becker . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 329
Die Wissensgesellschaft und ihr Ethikbedarf
Von Wolfgang Bergsdorf . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 351
Die Unverzichtbarkeit der naturrechtlichen Argumentation
Von Lothar Roos . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 363
Autorenverzeichnis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 373

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Vorwort
Die historische Wende von 1989/1990 und der bald darauf erfolgte Zusammenbruch der kommunistischen Herrschaft in der Sowjetunion und in den Satellitenstaaten haben die Welt verndert. Die Spaltung Deutschlands und Europas
konnte berwunden werden, was weder die Menschen auf beiden Seiten des
Eisernen Vorhangs noch die Politiker, noch die Wissenschaftler erwartet hatten.
Die ideologisch-politische Blockbildung nach dem Zweiten Weltkrieg hatte
dazu gefhrt, da die Kommunikation der Menschen ber Mauer und Stacheldraht hinweg nur sporadisch und unter grten Schwierigkeiten aufrechterhalten
werden konnte. Um so mehr entfaltete sie sich in den jeweiligen Lebensrumen
im Westen beziehungsweise im Osten. Dabei gab es einen groen Unterschied: Im Westen waren es die freien Brger selbst, die unter Nutzung aller
Mglichkeiten der Kommunikation und der Mobilitt die wechselseitigen Beziehungen ber die nationalen Grenzen hinweg aufbauten und verdichteten, wohingegen im Osten die Kommunikation unter den Brudervlkern uerst drftig blieb und nur soweit zustande kam, wie es den Machthabern ins Konzept
pate. Die freiheitlichen Wirtschaftsordnungen und insbesondere der gemeinsame Wirtschaftsraum der Europischen Union begnstigten die grenzberschreitenden Aktivitten, auch die Bildung von multinationalen Unternehmen.
Die Wiedervereinigung Deutschlands liefert ein anschauliches Beispiel dafr,
da die Menschen in der bisherigen DDR, nachdem sie die DM erhalten hatten,
in erster Linie den ungeheuren Konsumstau beseitigen wollten. Die westdeutsche Wirtschaft profitierte davon und baute ihre Verkaufsmrkte aus. Sehr viel
schwieriger war es, anstelle der maroden Produktionssttten erfolgreiche Unternehmen in Ostdeutschland anzusiedeln und damit zukunftsfhige Arbeitspltze
zu schaffen.
Eine hnliche Entwicklung wenngleich in sehr verschiedener Intensitt
erfolgte in den osteuropischen Lndern. Die Befreiung vom totalitren Joch
bewirkte, da groe Teile der Bevlkerung in Polen, Tschechien, in der Slowakei, in Ungarn, dann auch in den baltischen Staaten und in den Staaten, die sich
aus dem zerfallenden Jugoslawien lsen konnten, nach Westen blickten und von
dort Hilfe beim Neubau ihres Landes erwarteten. Sie wollten anstelle der bisherigen Zentralverwaltungswirtschaft eine freiheitliche Wirtschaft errichten. Hilfe
konnten am ehesten die westlichen Grounternehmen bieten, die ihrerseits fr
ihre Produkte auf den sich neu bildenden Mrkten Fu fassen wollten und deshalb auch bereit waren, Schrittmacherdienste bei den so bitter bentigten In-

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Vorwort

vestitionen zu leisten, die sowohl die Finanzmittel als auch das entwickelte
technische Know-how umfaten. Da auch zahlreiche Entwicklungslnder, von
denen viele erhebliche Fortschritte bei der wirtschaftlichen, sozialen, kulturellen
und auch politischen Entwicklung gemacht hatten, an diesen Investitionen und
am Absatz ihrer landwirtschaftlichen Produkte in den Industrielndern interessiert waren, kam es zu einer, man kann sagen, weltweiten ffnung der nationalen, regionalen und globalen Mrkte, wobei die neuen Kommunikationstechnologien die Bildung von Verbindungen und Netzwerken in der ganzen Welt erleichterten. Dieser Proze wird als Globalisierung bezeichnet, wobei er sich
nicht nur auf die Bereiche der Wirtschaft und des Handels erstreckt, sondern
zunehmend auch den Zugang zu neuen wissenschaftlichen Erkenntnissen und
Entdeckungen auf vielen Gebieten begnstigt.
Aber wie wrde sich die Globalisierung auf das bestehende soziale, kulturelle, staatliche Gefge auswirken? Wrden die multinationalen Konzerne knftig die bestimmende Kraft und die Richtung und die Geschwindigkeit der wirtschaftlichen Entfaltung und Zusammenarbeit vorgeben? Es waren nicht nur
jene, die schon bisher den Konzentrationsprozessen in den nationalen Wirtschaften mit wachsender Skepsis begegnet waren, die sich gegen die Globalisierung wandten und eine strenge Kontrolle und Regelung durch die Staaten verlangten. Strker bewegt viele die Sorge, ob die Globalisierung zu einer Gefahr
fr die Arbeitspltze und fr die arbeitenden Menschen in jenen Lndern wird,
in denen die soziale Marktwirtschaft Wohlstand und soziale Sicherheit fr alle
geschaffen hat. Die gewaltigen Unterschiede bei den Arbeitskosten, die zwischen den alten Lndern der Europischen Union und den osteuropischen Lndern bestehen, bewirken, da nicht nur die multinationalen Unternehmen, sondern auch mittlere und kleinere Unternehmen Investitionen und damit Arbeitspltze in die Niedriglohn-Lnder verlagern. Zudem stehen die asiatischen
Lnder, wie China und Indien, ebenfalls vor den Toren Europas und der USA.
Die aufgekommenen Befrchtungen und ngste haben sich inzwischen weiter zugespitzt. Bedroht die Globalisierung nicht die nationale und kulturelle
Identitt der Vlker und Staaten? Wird die Globalisierung dazu fhren, da die
Unterschiede und Besonderheiten zwischen den Nationen und Vlkern immer
mehr verschwinden und eine Weltgesellschaft entsteht? Diese Fragen mit
ihren vielen Aspekten standen im Mittelpunkt des 8. Deutsch-Amerikanischen
Kolloquiums, das vom 12. bis 18. August 2004 in Detroit stattfand. Den Auftakt bildete die Klrung dessen, was nationale und kulturelle Identitt bedeutet
und wie sie von der Globalisierung betroffen wird. In diesem Zusammenhang
wurden auch die Themen Europisierung der Welt, Projekt Weltethos und
The Clash of Civilization behandelt. Weitere Schwerpunkte bildeten Strukturprobleme der internationalen Ordnung und aktuelle Fragen der Friedensethik
vor allem auf dem Hintergrund des Irak-Krieges und seiner Folgen. Aspekte der

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Vorwort

konomischen Dimension der Globalisierung wurden ebenso angesprochen wie


die Verantwortung der Christen fr Gesellschaft und Politik.
Der vorliegende Band enthlt die Vortrge der amerikanischen und deutschen
Teilnehmer. Die Verantwortung fr das Kolloquium, das seit 1990 abwechselnd
in Deutschland und in den USA durchgefhrt wird, tragen Jude P. Dougherty
von der Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C., und Anton Rauscher von der Katholischen Sozialwissenschaftlichen Zentralstelle in Mnchengladbach. Erfreulicherweise haben die Kolloquien zu dauerhaften Kontakten
und zu fruchtbarem Meinungsaustausch zwischen den amerikanischen und deutschen Wissenschaftlern gefhrt.
Wir haben besonders zu danken fr die grozgige Frderung des Kolloquiums durch den Erzbischof von Detroit, Adam Cardinal Maida, der Gastgeber
war, und der Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung unter dem Vorsitz von Professor Dr.
Bernhard Vogel, der die Kolloquien von Anfang an mit Interesse begleitete.
Darber hinaus sind mehrere Spenden dem Kolloquium zugeflossen. Dank gebhrt Mrs. Mary Rakow im Sekretariat von Jude P. Dougherty und Frau Wilma
Cremer im Sekretariat der Katholischen Sozialwissenschaftlichen Zentralstelle
in Mnchengladbach, die groen Anteil bei der organisatorischen Vorbereitung
des Kolloquiums sowie bei der Erstellung des Berichtsbandes haben.
Mnchengladbach, im September 2005

Anton Rauscher

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I. Die Herausforderung der Globalisierung


Kulturelle, religise und ethische Aspekte

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National Identity
By Jude P. Dougherty
The present generation, for the first time in history, is experiencing a unity of
mankind such that nothing essential can happen anywhere that does not concern
all. The Stoic understanding of the unity of mankind, the framework of the
polis, has been expanded to include the whole of mankind. The growing interdependence among nations seemingly has ended the days of absolute national
sovereignty. Almost imperceptibly a new attitude has developed regarding interdependence, so much so that a United States of Europe is regarded as an imminent possibility. As Europeans debate a constitution, the loss of national sovereignty looms with unacknowledged consequences.
This eradication of national identity is occurring at the same time that there
is a widespread awareness that the West has lost some of the spiritual resources
which animated its past. In a memorable passage written in the first decades of
the 20th century, the Spanish-born, Harvard University professor, George Santayana expressed it this way:
The present age is a critical one and interesting to live in. The civilization characteristic of Christendom has not disappeared, yet another civilization has begun to
take its place. We still understand the value of religious faith . . . On the other hand,
the shell of Christendom is broken. The unconquerable mind of the East, the pagan
past, the industrial socialist future confront it with equal authority. On the whole
life and mind is saturated with the slow upward filtration of a new spirit that of
an emancipated, atheistic, international democracy.1

Santayana was not alone in his assessment. Philosophers and theologians as


diverse as Nietzsche and Leo XIII addressed the new intellectual climate shaping 19th-century European thought. Old patterns of thought were losing the allegiance of the European intelligentsia. Lost was a confidence that the inherited
could withstand the assault of the new science and technology and the progress
it implied. Nietzsche and later Husserl and Heidegger, each in his own way,
called for a return to classical Greece as the source for an understanding of
Western culture. Leo XIII recommended Aquinas as the antidote to the nihilism
and anti-Christian spirit which animated the intellectual climate in the mid1800s. Discussion in philosophical circles tended to focus on the meaning of
1 George Santayana, The Winds of Doctrine (New York: Charles Scribner's Sons,
1913), p. 1.

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14

Jude P. Dougherty

the concept Europe. Hilaire Belloc could confidently assert that Europe is
the Faith, the Faith is Europe, but that view was not widely shared in the intellectual circles of his day by the philosophers of Enlightenment parentage
who thought they had eradicated Christianity. The classical sources of Western
culture could not be denied, but was that the whole story? Paul Valry, we shall
subsequently see, would answer with an emphatic no.
In his 1935 lecture, Philosophy and the Crisis of European Humanity, Edmund Husserl offered an analysis of Europe's spiritual and intellectual crisis
that looked to ancient Greece as a way out of the crisis facing the West. Husserl found in the Greek spirit of philosophical inquiry the sources for free and
universal theoretical reflection that would serve as a model for a supranational ideal of reason. In Husserl's words, There are only two escapes from
the crisis of European existence: the downfall of Europe in its estrangement
from its own rational sense of life, its fall into hostility toward the spiritual into
barbarity; or the rebirth of Europe from the spirit of philosophy through a heroism of reason that overcomes naturalism once and for all.2
Like his mentor Husserl, Martin Heidegger similarly attempted to show that a
revival of the Greeks was essential to the future of the West. Heidegger looked
upon Germany as the privileged nation whose historical mission is to save the
West when the spiritual strength of the West fails and the West starts to come
apart at the seams.3 Notably, in his several speeches on the Hellenic patrimony
of the West, Heidegger omits any reference to Roman Catholicism and Roman
humanism.
Historians remind us that cultures do not develop in a linear order of historical growth but grow sporadically, unlike the causal determinism characteristic
of science and technology. By the third century B.C. Greece was on the threshold of modern science, but that science had to await the l6th century before the
intellect of Western man had achieved the necessary understanding of the relation of science to technology. Distinctive cultural patterns arising from religious, social, economic, and political factors provided the necessary condition.
The well-known historian of science and technology Lynn White, in a colorful phrase, reminds us that the [Benedictine] monk was the first intellectual [in
the history of the West] to get dirt under his fingernails.4 Speaking of the Be2 Edmund Husserl, The Crisis of European Sciences and the Transcendental Phenomenology, trans. David Carr (Evanston: Northwestern University Press, 1970),
p. 299.
3 (Rector's Address, 1933/34), The Self-Assertion of the German University, in:
The Heidegger Controversy, ed. Gunther Neske and Emil Kettering (New York: Paragon House, 1990), p. 19.
4 Lynn White, Machino ex deo: Essays in the Dynamism of Western Culture
(Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1968), p. 65.

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National Identity

15

nedictine, White goes on to say, He did not immediately launch into scientific
investigation, but in his very person he destroyed the old artificial barrier between the empirical and the speculative, the manual and the liberal arts and
thus helped create a social atmosphere favorable to scientific and technological
development.5 White offers his observations in the context of his essay, Dynamo and Virgin Reconsidered, noting that St. Bernard's Cistercian monks
were so devoted to the Virgin that every one of their hundreds of monasteries
was dedicated to her; yet these White Benedictines seem often to have led the
way in the use of power. Some of their abbeys had four or five water wheels,
each powering a different workshop.6 He then makes the important point that
the Virgin and the dynamo are not opposing principles permeating the universe;
they are allies. The growth of medieval power technology . . . is a chapter in the
conquest of freedom. More than that, to those who search out why it happened,' it
is a part of the history of religion. The humanitarian technology which in later centuries had grown from medieval seeds was not rooted in economic necessity for
such necessity' is inherent in every society, yet has found expression only in the
Occident, nourished in the tradition of Western theology. It is ideas which make
necessities conscious. The labor-saving power machines of the latter Middle Ages
were harmonious with the religious assumptions of the worth of even the most
seemingly degraded human personality.7

Modernity since the European Enlightenment has acquired an implacable


faith in progress. Success achieved in science and technology fostered the belief that a similar success is possible in economics, politics, and the social order. Defects in human institutions were to be approached with confidence that
they, too, could be remedied with time as if they were problems in physics or
mechanics. Lost was an awareness of the distinctive culture and its sources
which made Western achievement possible. Those sources lie in classical antiquity, in the Hellenism and Christianity which gave us confidence that the human intellect is powerful enough to ferret out the secrets of an intelligible and
purposive nature. This confidence is at once the root of science and technology
and the rule of law as reflected in Western social and political institutions.
Those laws and institutions create a people to the extent that they are lived,
not simply recorded on parchment or engraved in marble or bronze but are instilled in the minds and dispositions of citizens.
Just as looking into the past is an essential route to finding oneself, so too a
people or a nation needs to understand its past. The German word Bildung is
useful insofar as it signifies a process, a process which is a continuum of impressions and evaluations which cumulatively give one a sense of belonging to
a collective with a distinctive heritage. Only in such a Bildung in which family
5
6
7

Ibid.
Ibid., p. 67.
Ibid., pp. 7273.

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16

Jude P. Dougherty

ties, fostered and perpetuated by love and reverence for forefathers, is it likely
that freedom and the rule of law will prevail. Social cooperation depends on
national identity. To respect one's people is not tantamount to respecting whatever repressive government may have been thrust upon them in the past.
A point that needs to be underscored is the distinction between political and
cultural nationalism. Hilaire Belloc could proclaim, Spiritually we are all
Semites. Despite a certain common spiritual and cultural affinity, rendered increasingly evident as Islam rises in opposition to the West, cultural differences
within Europe exist and define national identity. The tiff between Berlusconi
and Schroeder and its aftermath is indeed amusing and need not be taken seriously, but there is a German national character, an Italian character, and a
French character, and the world is richer for it. An outsider would not want
these traits to disappear. It is more difficult to define an American character
since until recently it was an amalgam of the many strains found in Europe.
Immigration policy and the failure to integrate the black into what is essentially
European culture has eroded not only educational standards but the manner and
morals of a people. Standards of behavior have been shifted to the lowest common denominator. There is little doubt that the identity of the American people
is being eroded as a result of a political emphasis on diversity and multiculturalism. Moreover, the campaign for inclusion points to a more insidious form of
diversity, that which exists between the culture of the intellectuals and the culture of farmers, manufacturers, and tradesmen, sometimes referred to as the
difference between middle America and the eastern seaboard intelligentsia.
National identity is a challenge to be faced both in Europe and North America. Absent a common bond in the people, absent a cultural identity, can the
laws, let alone those customs and transactions which depend on virtue in the
people, long survive? England as a result of its immigration and asylum policy
is losing its identity to the chagrin of native Englishmen. The newcomers, in
bringing their own culture with them, eschew British traditions, creating enclaves of their own to the detriment of the larger society. Some say the Englishman we know from history, literature and film is becoming extinct, with
the sovereignty of the country itself in jeopardy as the European Union erodes
Britain's self-governance and national identity. Is this to the good?
Perhaps we should more properly speak of European identity. Paul Valry,
writing in the first quarter of the 20th century, gives us a very broad definition
of Europe. Europe is more than a geographical designation, he insists. There is
a certain trait, quite distinct from race, nationality, and even language which
unites the countries of the West and Central Europe making them all alike.8
Wherever the names of Caesar, Caius, Trajan, and Virgil, of Moses and St.
8 Paul Valry, Collected Works, trans. Denise Folliot and Jackson Mathews (New
York, Bollingen Foundation, 1962), Vol. 10, pp. 32223.

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National Identity

17

Paul and Aristotle, Plato and Euclid have had simultaneous meaning and
authority, there is Europe.9 Again, Every race and land that has been successfully Romanized, Christianized and as regards the mind, disciplined by the
Greeks, is absolutely European.10 Shakespeare, he points out, is an integral
part of French, Italian, and German culture; so, too, Goethe and Dante. If Valry were part of the commission drafting the European Constitution,11 Valry
would insist that it contain reference to both Christianity and the character of
Europe.12 Christianity introduced a universal moral law that took its place
alongside the juridical unity contributed by Roman law. In other words, Christianity in taking all it could from Rome gave us a common law, a common
God, one and the same temporal judge, and one and the same judge in eternity.
Valry continues:
Christianity proposed to the mind the most subtle, the greatest, and indeed the
most fruitful of problems. Whether it were a question of the value of testimony, the
criticism of texts, or the sources and guarantees of knowledge; of the distinction
between faith and reason, and the opposition that arises between them or the antagonism between faith, deeds, and works; a question of freedom, servitude, or grace;
of spiritual and material power, and their mutual conflict, the equality of men, the
status of women and how much else? Christianity educated and stimulated millions of minds, making them act and react, century after century.13

Having acknowledged the influence of Christianity, Valry turns to the role


of classical learning. He speaks of the . . . subtle yet powerful influence to
which we owe the best of our intelligence, the acuteness and solidity of our
knowledge, as also the clarity, purity, and elegance of our arts and literature: it
is from Greece that those virtues came to us.14 What we owe to Greece, he
maintains, is perhaps what has most profoundly distinguished us from the rest
of humanity. Europe is above all the creator of science. While there have been
arts in all countries, there has been true science only in Europe. Valry's
assessment may be contrasted with Heidegger's, whose analysis placed the
emphasis on Greece and ignored two of Europe's most fundamental traditions,
Roman Catholicism and Roman humanism.
With such a sweeping definition of Europe, can there be national identity
within Europe or even a distinction between Europe and North America? What
Ibid., p. 322.
Ibid.
11 Even President Vladimir V. Putin, in discussing the role of his country vis-a-vis
the European Union, speaks of the value of Russian identity (New York Times, October 6, 2003, pp. 1, 4).
12 It may be observed that Valry Giscard D'Estaing and the Commission he heads
to draft a European Constitution is, in its failure to note the Christian sources of European unity and culture, closer to Heidegger than to his French namesake.
13 Valry, op. cit., p. 319.
14 Ibid.
9

10

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Jude P. Dougherty

Valry means by Europe is almost identical to what is referred to today to as


the West, a term used sometimes to designate not only Europe and the Americas but Japan and other parts of Asia that are indebted to Western science and
technology, if not religion.
It is not easy to define clearly what a nation is. A line traced on a map and
on the ground, constituting a frontier, is the result of a series of historical incidents sanctioned by treaties. It may separate countries that are alike and join
others that are very different. There is a tendency to generalize characteristics
that are far from indicative of the whole. Few have difficulty speaking of the
Italian, the German, the Englishman. These broad, imprecise designations
may serve a purpose in colloquial speech and may be indicative of certain prejudices, positive and negative. Yet they do have some foundation in reality,
indicative of national or cultural traits. It may be easier to differentiate between
oriental traits and occidental ones than between Polish and Czech. Color, custom, and culture differentiate; so also do opinions, prejudices, and evaluations.
Is a rapprochement among the different peoples of Europe, say between Eastern and Western Europe, inevitable? With the creation of the European Union
many are now face to face who had never looked on each other as anything but
radically foreign. No doubt contact has resulted in the acknowledgment of certain virtues in the other or some superiority, some strength, agility, industry or
other virtues we identify with national character.
National character is difficult to define. The history of most countries of Europe is a chronicle of extremes, a chain of peaks and abysses. Some seem fated
by geographical structure, water resources, climate, soil, flora and fauna to play
a pivotal role on a grand scale. Germany rises, staggers, falls, rises again, retrenches, recaptures her greatness, is rent in two, reunites, displaying by turn
qualities of pride, resignation, unconcern, and ardor, standing out from other
nations by a distinct character. A certain natural discipline is apparent in the
German character which comes to the fore when needed. Sometimes the nation
is suddenly united when one would expect it to be divided. Moreover, the simplest and broadest features of any nation are likely to go unnoticed by the inhabitants themselves since they tend to be oblivious to what they have always
experienced. It is the foreigner who notices those features and may make too
much of them. One must also realize that whereas the effects of man's labor
with respect to his surroundings are clearly recognizable, the modifications in
man himself brought about by his place of residence are likely to be obscure. A
summer 2003 travel advertisement tells us that the Greek island, Santorini, was
shaped by its natural cataclysms, but its villages and landscapes seem chiseled
by the island's stark light. Out of that light came not only the great statues of
ancient Greece and the long clean lines of the Parthenon but the precise vocabulary for ideas that gave birth to Western philosophy.

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National Identity

19

The reader may miss a middle term connecting land, sky, and philosophy,
but the words are worthy of some reflection. The effects of sky, the water, the
air he breathes, the prevailing winds, what one eats, are physiological and psychological. Manners, ideals, politics are the incalculable effects of subtle
causes. The Bavarian is not an Englishman and not simply because of language. The contours of a land that nourishes its people are but one aspect of a
complex whole. Location, ethnic composition, psychological constitution equally
contribute to national identity.
To understand a nation, be it England, France, Germany, or Italy, we must
attend to what each has created in the realm of the mind, expressions of intelligence or knowledge. The total intellectual and artistic treasure, the accumulated
beauty of great works of art, written, sculpted, painted, constructed is constitutive of a culture that would not exist apart from its roots in a particular national
setting.
Every nation of Europe is a composite, the result of the different ethnic elements that came to be mixed within her territory, and in none of them is a
single tongue spoken. Paul Valry will say of France, The French nation resembles a tree several times grafted, the quality and flavor of whose fruit are
the result of a happy wedding of very different saps and humors combining in
a single and indivisible life.15 Stretching a bit, he continues, Whether we
speak of the Capelins, of Joan of Arc, Louis IX, Henry IV, Richelieu, the Convention, or Napoleon, we are referring to one and the same thing, an active
symbol of our national identity and unity.16
Does the preservation of national identity matter? It matters to hosts of immigrants in both Europe and North America who seek to retain not only their
inherited customs but even their native language in their adopted country. It
matters because traditions, the components of what we call a culture, are specific. One cannot be a citizen of the world. Identity is local; it is the characteristic of a people who have inhabited a land over a period of time, who have
developed certain collective habits, evident in their manners, their dress, the
feasts they collectively enjoy, their religious bonds, the premium they put on
education, and their attention to detail and precision. These are not universal
traits but are rooted in centuries past and depend upon a historical consciousness, an attention to the deeds of ancestors past.
National identity is threatened from two sources, the immigrant who refuses
to assimilate and the secular, aggressively anti-Christian international socialist
whose mentality permeates the major media, the entertainment industries, and
the universities. The nation that is conscious of its past may be the only bul15
16

Valry, op. cit., p. 407.


Valry, op. cit., p. 408.

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20

Jude P. Dougherty

wark against the neopaganism which seeks to replace Christianity throughout


the West. Cultural and moral standards are specific and cannot be held in
vacuo, apart from particular peoples, periods, and places. Even the universal
works of the mind, philosophy and science are subject to the hidden influence
of race, local habit and milieu. In fact, nothing seems to define a nation or
region better than the philosophy it has produced or the adherence to the rule
of law under which it functions. We speak of classical metaphysics, French literature, 19th century German philosophy, and in the United States of the Southern Agrarians.
A nation or people can only be energized internally, by the goals it sets for
itself in the light of a shared perception of the common good. These social and
political modes of life cannot be imposed from without as the United States has
discovered in Iraq. So-called emerging nations cannot be expected to embrace
lock, stock, and barrel the social and political modes of life that are urged on
them from without. Anthropologists have, of course, realized all along what
policy makers have been slow to acknowledge. In spite of the craving for economic advancement, who does, in fact, want to live in a world culture? Given
media-driven amoral standards, such a culture would be beneath the dignity of
human nature. In talking about declining moral standards, perhaps no one has
put the matter more succinctly than John M. Rist in his book, Real Ethics.17
Rist foresees a bleak future for the West. In losing its grip on its Christian
past and in the absence of a clear sense of civic virtue, Western society is preparing itself for a totalitarian democracy. Unable to choose between conflicting
claims to the good and the resulting propensity to tolerate all, it is subverting
the principle of toleration itself. Unfortunately, recovering a sense of the past
may not be an easy task. The past can be clouded by the authoritarian or ideological mentality of academics and humanists or be rewritten or invented to
promote a political agenda. Moreover, history is only one vehicle for transmitting the inherited. Whatever wisdom a society has acquired can be passed on
only if it is instantiated in institutional structures designed to maintain inherited
practices, beliefs, and intellectual acumen. As for the individual caught in an
unrooted modernity, those apt to keep their wits in a godless future are those
who possess a knowledge however acquired of their roots, that is, their own
past and traditions.
It is through inherited literature in our native language that we become aware
of our collective roots, develop collective attitudes, develop a political culture.
The Frenchman becomes a Frenchman not merely by reason of birth in a particular geographic territory but by reason of the literary tradition to which he is
introduced early on. One develops a Catholic mind by reading the Church
17

New York: Cambridge University Press, 1997.

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National Identity

21

Fathers, Justin Martyr, Clement, and Augustine, the medieval doctors of the
Church, and modern commentators thereon.
In a 1934 essay, The Sources of Cultural Change, the English historian
Christopher Dawson offered this definition: A culture is a common way of life
a particular adjustment of man to his natural surroundings and his economic
needs. In its development it resembles a biological species. Just as every natural region tends to possess its characteristic forms of vegetable and animal life,
so too will it possess its own type of human society.18 Dawson identifies the
three main influences which form and modify human culture. They are the
same as in the formation of animal species. They are (1) race, i. e., the genetic
factor; (2) environment, i. e., the geographical factor; (3) function or occupation,
i. e., the economic factors. But in addition to these there is a fourth element
thought or the psychological factor which is peculiar to the human species
and the existence of which frees man from the blind dependence on material
environment.19
Although the intimate linkage of science, technology, and commerce with
rapid material progress and change typifies only a minor part of the world, it
has assumed the status of a world culture with globalization as its hallmark.
Leaders of emerging nations are urged to embrace globalization and to become
part of the civilized world. If those leaders sense that the diffusion of a scientific world culture may threaten their indigenous cultures, they are sometimes
assured that world culture is a purely material culture incapable of impairing
the spiritual content of a nation's heritage.
The American journalist, Robert Locke makes a suggestive distinction between globalization and the globalists. Globalization as he defines it is an
ongoing historical process, a factual description of how things are. Globalism,
by contrast is an ideology, a set of political opinions about how things ought to
be. Ideological globalists, in Locke's characterization, look upon the existence
of separate nations as unacceptable because it fosters inequality. Separate nations give peoples with histories of brilliant political and economic achievement
. . . the free and prosperous lives that their forebears have earned while at the
same time consigning peoples of inferior ancestral achievement to lesser existences. The leftist egalitarian project aims to erase borders in order that mass
immigration to the first world from the third will force citizens of the first to
share their superior way of life. National cultural identity gives people an
attachment to their land and history and consequently fosters global inequality.20 Locke may be guilty of some exaggeration, but the globalist spirit he
detects is a reality all to often confronted.
18 Dawson, Dynamics of World History, ed. John J. Mulloy (Wilmington, Del.: ISI
Books, 2002), p. 4.
19 Ibid., p. 5.

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22

Jude P. Dougherty

I am not suggesting that the problems facing Europe and North America are
identical. Both have to deal with the consequences of their permissive immigration policies. The United States has the additional problem of an educational
system that tends toward the lowest common denominator at all levels. The
universities have become politicized in a leftward direction. One can detect in
the publications of major university presses a tendency to rewrite Western history, leaving out Christianity. The media on both sides of the Atlantic are uncompromising in their drive to undermine biblical morality, promoting deviant
behavior at every turn, no matter the social consequences.
Many who view the situation in the broad manner suggested here end with
an unrelieved pessimism. In fact, I have read no one who does not come to a
pessimistic conclusion. Charles Murray, in a preview of his forthcoming book,
concludes, I write at a time when Europe's run appears to be over. Bleaker
yet, there is reason to wonder whether European culture as we have known it
will even exist at the end of this century.21
Husserl and Heidegger in their calls to return to the Greeks for a renewal of
European political philosophy are not without warrant. The Greeks understood
well the interdependence of polis and oikos, of public and private. In praising
the polis as the highest level of human achievement, Aristotle did not ignore
the private realm, nor did he undervalue the ties of family for the sake of an
abstract polity. Rather he recognized that the city survives only as long as the
private particular world of the family does. And for Aristotle that included piety
of a religious sort as well as piety toward one's ancestors and one's state.22
This fundamental Aristotelian position has been reiterated in recent times by
Leo XIII in his anti-socialist encyclical Rerum Novarum (1891) and again by
Pius XI in Quadragesimo Anno (1931) and John Paul II in Centisimus Annus
(1991). Known in its modern form as the principle of subsidiarity, the principle calls upon states to foster personal freedom and intermediate institutions for
the sake of efficiency as well as the common good. In the words of Quadragesimo Anno, Just as it is wrong to take away from individuals what they can
accomplish by their own ability and effort and entrust it to a community, so too
it is an injury and at the same time both a serious evil and a disturbance of
right order to assign to a larger society what can be performed successfully by
smaller and lower communities (79). Given the contemporary drive to concenThe American Conservative, June 2, 2003, pp. 1314.
Charles Murray, Measuring Achievement: The West and the Rest, American
Enterprise Institute, News & Commentary, posted August 6, 2003, p. 12. That judgment is not uncommon.
22 For an extended treatment of the role of the family and its religion (cult) in
creating the cohesiveness of society necessary for political stability and avoidance of
tyrannical rule, see W. K. Lacey, The Family in Classical Greece (Ithaca, NY: Cornell
University Press, 1968).
20
21

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National Identity

23

trate power in central government, the principle remains relevant in both Brussels and Washington, D.C.
Summary
As the pace of globalization increases, it may be useful to call attention to the importance of national identity to the preservation of a culture. One cannot be a citizen
of an international, cosmopolitan world order. Identity is specific, rooted in soil, custom, and religious tradition. Throughout the West, national identity is being eroded as
a result of a political emphasis on diversity and multiculturalism. National identity is
threatened by the immigrant who refuses to assimilate and by the secular, aggressive,
anti-Christian international socialist whose mentality is reflected in the new European
Constitution. The question arises: Can a Europe in denial of its classical and Christian
roots long survive as we know it today? Paul Vlery put the matter succinctly. Europe
cannot be understood apart from Roman humanism and Roman Catholicism, the
source of its law, spirituality, and scientific impetus. Whatever wisdom a society has
acquired can be passed on only if it is instantiated in institutional structures designed
to maintain inherited practices, beliefs, and intellectual acumen. Absent an acknowledgment of its roots, can Europe survive the challenge of a militant Islam?

Zusammenfassung
Die Geschwindigkeit des Prozesses der Globalisierung nimmt zu. Es erscheint sinnvoll, die Aufmerksamkeit auf die Bedeutung der nationalen Identitt fr die Erhaltung
der Kultur zu legen. Man kann nicht Brger einer internationalen kosmopolitischen
Weltordnung sein. Die Identitt ist spezifisch; sie wurzelt im Land, in den Gebruchen
und religisen Traditionen. berall in der westlichen Welt geht die nationale Identitt
zurck als Ergebnis einer Politik, die vielgestaltige und multikulturelle Lebensformen
bevorzugt. Die nationale Identitt ist gefhrdet durch den Einwanderer, der sich der
Assimilation verweigert, sowie durch die skulare aggressive antichristliche Tendenz
des internationalen Sozialismus, dessen Geistigkeit auch in der neuen europischen
Verfassung sprbar ist. Die Frage stellt sich: Kann Europa wie wir es heute kennen
berleben, wenn es seine klassischen und christlichen Wurzeln negiert? Paul Vlery
hat diese Frage prgnant formuliert. Europa kann nicht begriffen werden ohne den
rmischen Humanismus und den rmischen Katholizismus, die Quelle des Gesetzes,
der Spiritualitt und des wissenschaftlichen Impetus. Was immer eine Gesellschaft an
Weisheit erlangt hat, kann nur weitergegeben werden, wenn sie in Strukturen Gestalt
annimmt und das ererbte Brauchtum, den Glauben und den institutionellen Zuschnitt
bewahrt. Kann Europa, ohne sich seiner Wurzeln bewut zu werden, die Herausforderung des militanten Islam berleben?

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Die Europisierung der Welt


Von Jrgen Schwarz
Nach den Groen Weltkriegen und dem ideologischen Ost-West-Antagonismus im 20. Jahrhundert erscheinen die Spannungsverhltnisse zwischen den
mannigfachen Kulturen und Zivilisationen als die berragende Problematik der
Welt im 21. Jahrhundert. Neben den regionalen und partikularen kulturellen
Konkurrenzen, die die Menschheitsgeschichte von Beginn an kennt, sind es die
zunehmenden kulturellen Spannungen im globalen Ausma, die die Entwicklung der Weltgesellschaft auf verschiedene Weise belasten werden. Mglicherweise geschieht dies in dem von Samuel Huntington 1996 in seinem Buch
Kampf der Kulturen (The clash of civilizations) prognostizierten Sinne gewaltsamer Zusammenste, so wie gegenwrtig die Auseinandersetzung mit
dem internationalen Terrorismus und Islamismus interpretiert wird. Oder es
vollzieht sich in Formen von mehr oder weniger erzwungenen Befriedungs- und
Demokratisierungsprozessen, wie die jngsten Entwicklungen auf dem Balkan,
in Afghanistan oder im Irak zeigen. Sie werden mit groer Wahrscheinlichkeit
und sehr viel grundlegender, als die aktuellen Konflikte aussagen in zunehmender kultur-ideologischer Konkurrenz wenn auch unter der Oberflche einer vordergrndig friedlichen und sachbezogenen internationalen Kooperation
die internationale Politik bestimmen. In entsprechenden Konstellationen knnen
diese Konkurrenzen ebenfalls zu gefhrlichen Eskalationen oder gewaltttigen
Eruptionen fhren, generell aber seit einigen Jahrzehnten deutlich zu erkennen zu erhhtem Misstrauen und subtilem Widerstand gegenber einem fortdauernden und rigoroser gebten europischen Oktroi und damit zu permanenten Strungen und Reibungsverlusten in den internationalen Beziehungen.
So wie die traditionalen, regionalen ethnischen und kulturellen Konflikte, die
auf allen Kontinenten beobachtet werden, sind auch die globalen Spannungen
zwischen Europa (dem Westen) und den Lndern insbesondere Asiens, Afrikas
und Lateinamerikas nicht wirklich neu. Tatschlich wurden schon in den letzten
Jahrhunderten westliche, europische Kultur und Zivilisation kontinuierlich in
die auereuropische Welt getragen: mit groer Selbstverstndlichkeit, berzeugt von der kulturellen berlegenheit, mit selbstbewusstem Nachdruck und
unter Anwendung aller verfgbaren Mittel auf der Seite der Europer; bei nur
begrenzt mglicher Gegenwehr, schon bald dahinschwindendem Widerstand
oder auch mit wachsenden korrespondierenden Interessen auf der Seite der von

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26

Jrgen Schwarz

den Europern kolonisierten und beeinflussten Lnder. Dieser kulturelle und zivilisatorische Europisierungsprozess hatte unterschiedlich tiefreichende, in der
Regel aber nachhaltige trickle-down-Effekte sowohl auf weit ausgreifende, stabil erscheinende und traditionsreiche als auch auf unscheinbarere, regionale
Kulturen. Die Lnder und ihre Gesellschaften ffneten sich unter Druck und
Drohungen und oft erst nach hinhaltendem, letztendlich aber vergeblichem Widerstand gegenber den europischen Invasoren. Sie ffneten sich aber auch
freiwillig gegenber den europischen Herausforderungen, die ihnen bald schon
als unumgngliche Modernisierungen erschienen, als adquate Wege des Fortschritts aus kulturell bedingter Rckstndigkeit. Die Europisierung vernderte
oftmals die kulturelle Identitt der betroffenen Lnder; in den Prozessen der
Modernisierung verloren sie den Bezug zu kulturellen Traditionen; es verschwanden weithin die aus den kulturellen Traditionen abgeleiteten Regeln fr
die Entwicklung von Staat und Gesellschaft; es gelang oftmals nicht oder nur
ungengend, die kulturelle Grundlegung mit den exogenen Herausforderungen
in bereinstimmung zu bringen; manche Kulturen unterlagen gnzlich dem europischen Ansturm, sie gaben sich als nicht konkurrenzfhig selbst auf und
verschwanden. Nur wenigen Lndern gelang es, die traditionelle nationale Kultur ohne signifikante Einbuen hinnehmen zu mssen und ohne grere Diskrepanzen mit europischer Kultur und westlicher Zivilisation zu amalgamieren. Zu diesen Lndern, die sich in mancherlei Hinsicht mit Europa und dem
Westen vergleichen knnen, gehren etwa Japan, die als Kleine Drachen (oder
Tigerstaaten) bezeichneten Lnder Taiwan, Sdkorea, Singapur und das spter
zur VR China zurckgekehrte Hongkong; die meisten anderen Lnder haben
inzwischen ebenfalls im Hinblick auf Modernisierung und Fortschritt und internationale Konkurrenzfhigkeit auf westliche und europische Mastbe gesetzt.
Bei aller Kritik an der Europisierung kann nicht geleugnet werden, dass die
Europisierung in grundlegender Weise erst wirtschaftliche und soziale Prosperitt, Weltoffenheit und internationale Kommunikation auf zahlreichen Gebieten
von Wissenschaft und Kultur mglich gemacht hat. In der Summe profitieren
die Lnder von dieser Entwicklung, wenn man etwa die von der UNO eingefhrten Standards fr moderne Entwicklung zugrunde legt.
I. Rckbesinnung auf die eigenen Traditionen
Das Auffallende aber ist, dass sich die zuletzt genannten Einsichten seit einigen Jahrzehnten in signifikanter Weise zu verndern scheinen, und zwar im
Hinblick auf eine Rckbesinnung auf die jeweils eigenen kulturellen Traditionen und damit einhergehend auf den Versuch einer greren Distanznahme zum
europischen Einfluss. Das erscheint zunchst paradox, weil der Fortschritt nach
wie vor nach den vom Westen bernommenen Methoden und Mastben befrdert wird und in dieser Hinsicht niemand an eine Revision denkt. Die alten,

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Die Europisierung der Welt

27

indigenen Kulturen vor allem in Asien, aber auch in Afrika und Lateinamerika
scheinen jedoch oftmals auch dort, wo sie nur noch rudimentr vorhanden
schienen wiederzuerwachen, sich auf ihre Strken und Funktionen auch in der
modernen Welt zu besinnen und vor Erneuerungsprozessen zu stehen, die geradezu zwangslufig zu Auseinandersetzungen mit den kulturellen und zivilisatorischen Einflssen des Westens fhren drften. Kennzeichnend dafr sind
etwa die auf dem Hhepunkt nationalen und kulturellen Selbstbewusstseins vor
allem von asiatischen Fhrern (Malaysia, Singapur, Indonesien) im letzten Jahrzehnt ausgegebenen Parolen, dass die Welt zuknftig nicht mehr durch den kulturell erschpften Westen, sondern durch die kulturell zu neuem Leben und politisch zu neuer Strke gekommenen Lnder Asiens angefhrt werde. Finanzund Wirtschaftskrisen haben wohl nur vorbergehend solche Auffassungen leiser werden lassen; verstummt und hinter materiellen Zwngen verschwunden
sind diese Intentionen zweifellos nicht. Zu vergleichbaren Renaissance-Bemhungen gehren aber auch die Diskussionen in Japan und Sdkorea, in Indien
und Pakistan bis hin zu den Bewegungen in einzelnen Lndern Lateinamerikas
(Bolivien, Mexiko) oder Afrikas, wo sich die Ureinwohner wie in Bolivien,
Peru, Guatemala als Indios der Postmoderne bezeichnen und geradezu Lnder und Kontinente bergreifend von der Rckkehr der Zeit sprechen. Damit
sind die alten religisen Auffassungen, die Werteeinstellungen, die Denkweisen,
Rechtsauffassungen und sozialen und politischen Organisationsformen aus vorkolonialer Zeit gemeint. Oftmals sind solche Forderungen und Aufrufe vage, zu
den Zeitluften disparat und utopisch; im Grunde will und kann keine Gesellschaft die Europisierung rckgngig machen.
Gleichwohl aber sind die Bemhungen unbersehbar, die europischen Einflsse zu relativieren, ihnen nationale Form zu geben, ihnen wiederbelebtes
Kulturgut entgegenzustellen oder damit zu verbinden. Letztendlich wchst daraus die kulturelle Selbstbesinnung, die zur Auseinandersetzung mit dem fortdauernden Prozess der Europisierung fhren drfte. Zahlreiche Probleme der
internationalen Politik und Sicherheit, der globalen Wirtschaftsentwicklungen,
der nationalen Interessen- und Machtpolitik bis hin zur Vlkerpsychologie sind
neben anderen Ursachen zweifellos auch auf diese Grundproblematik zurckzufhren. Nicht nur die offen ausgetragenen gewaltttigen Auseinandersetzungen,
sondern auch die in zunehmendem Mae unduldsam und offensichtlich unter
kultur-ideologischen und national-egoistischen Aspekten ausgetragenen Konkurrenzen. Dabei werden hufig die legitimen nationalen politischen und wirtschaftlichen Interessen mit den kultur-ideologischen Motivierungen verwoben.
II. Der umfassende kulturelle Einfluss Europas
Wesentliche Ursachen fr die Konflikte der Welt liegen also so die These
in der seit Jahrhunderten voranschreitenden und trotz mancher Umkehrungsver-

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suche aufs Ganze gesehen irreversiblen globalen Europisierung. Damit ist


mehr gemeint als die seit der ersten Hlfte des vergangenen Jahrhunderts von
der Wissenschaft beobachteten Prozesse der internationalen Interdependenz und
auch mehr als die erst seit weniger als zwei Jahrzehnten so genannten Phnomene der Globalisierung. Whrend die internationale Interdependenz auf die
zunehmende wechselseitige Verflechtung und Abhngigkeit zwischen Staaten
abstellte und die Globalisierung heute sich auf die internationalen wirtschaftlichen Verflechtungen einschlielich aller ihrer politischen, wirtschaftlichen und
sozialen Folgen fr Staat und Gesellschaft richtet, soll unter Europisierung vor
allem der umfassende kulturelle Einfluss (impact) Europas und des Westens auf
die Nationen und Gesellschaften der Welt verstanden werden. Auch wenn heute
von der weltpolitischen Erschpfung Europas und vom Niedergang seiner wirtschaftlichen, seiner technisch-wissenschaftlichen und vor allem seiner kulturellen Krfte gesprochen wird, so ist doch nicht in Frage gestellt, dass der ber
Jahrhunderte gehende Einfluss Europas auf die Lnder der Welt und die globalen Strukturen und Prozesse manifest und unumkehrbar geworden ist. Nicht zuletzt kommt das auch darin zum Ausdruck, dass die Vereinigten Staaten, die
sich aus den europischen Traditionen zu eigenstndiger kultureller Identitt
entwickelt haben, auf den gemeinsamen Traditionslinien fortfahren, mit zunehmender Kraft und Motivation und mit deutlicher werdender Intention die europischen und westlichen Zielsetzungen zu vertreten. Dass durch diese Politik
weltweit der Eindruck einer Pax Americana entsteht und damit der politische
und weitergehende kulturelle Widerstand gegenber den USA und dem Westen
provoziert wird, ist eine seit Jahrzehnten bekannte negative Begleiterscheinung,
die in erster Linie nicht auf eine verfehlte Diplomatie, auf rigorose Zielsetzungen und Methoden zurckzufhren ist, sondern auf den zugrunde liegenden kulturellen Renaissance-Prozess.
Was sich in diesem Zusammenhang gegen die jeweilige Politik Amerikas
richtet, richtet sich letztendlich auch gegen die von den Europern in die Welt
getragenen kulturellen und zivilisatorischen Errungenschaften. Dabei muss unterschieden werden, ob sich die Bewegungen gegen die aktuelle Politik Amerikas richten oder gegen die mit der Europisierung ebenfalls vermittelten Fehlhaltungen und zivilisatorischen Negativfolgen.
Es ist zweifellos ein eklatantes Defizit, dass diese im Westen hufig als alternativlos und als Selbstlufer beurteilte Europisierung der Welt und die heute
daraus resultierenden Folgen in der auereuropischen Welt von der politischen
Klasse aller Lnder nicht oder nicht ausreichend wahrgenommen und deshalb
auch mgliche Schlussfolgerungen nur wenig adquat in das politische Handeln
einbezogen werden. Ist es nicht schon immer so gewesen, dass der Westen in
kulturellen Fragen dominant gewesen ist und dass auf der anderen Seite westliche berlegenheit, auch wenn sie als kultureller Oktroi empfunden wurde,
aus naheliegendem materiellen Grunde stillschweigend hingenommen werden

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Die Europisierung der Welt

29

musste? Es hat nach wie vor den Anschein, als wenn fr eine Perzeption dieser
Problematik und ihre zweifellos nur langfristig mglich erscheinende Lsung der lange Atem, der adquate Zugang und eine langfristige Strategie bei
den Regierenden fehlen.
Eine langfristige Lsungsmglichkeit wird im hier skizzierten Zusammenhang in der Akkulturation gesehen, dem Zueinanderfhren der Kulturen, wie
sie von Bronislaw Malinowski schon in den 1920er Jahren empirisch und theoretisch untersucht (A scientific theory of culture, and other essays, 1935),
dann aber weithin vergessen wurde. Und wie sie auch in dem Projekt Weltethos fr Weltpolitik und Weltwirtschaft (1997) von Hans Kng auftaucht. Im
Dialog der Akkulturation soll dann allerdings nicht allein ber das Nebeneinander der Kulturen nachgedacht werden, sondern ber die gemeinsame Verstndigung in den Weltproblemen und ber ein notwendiges Miteinander in der Weltverantwortung; bis hin zur Einflussnahme auf die jeweiligen Kulturkreise und
ihre Gesellschaften. Denn ohne Gewinnung einflussreicher Schichten der Gesellschaften fr Selbstbewusstsein und Weltoffenheit zugleich kann kein realistischer Ansatz fr die Milderung und dauerhafte Einhegung internationaler Konflikte gefunden werden.
Europisierung meint hier die bertragung der seit Jahrhunderten in Europa
und in den Vereinigten Staaten entwickelten Anschauungen vom Menschen, seiner Denkweisen, Verhaltens- und Handlungsmastbe, seiner Wissenschaftlichen
Methoden, seiner Rechtsgrundstze schlielich und seiner Erfahrungen in konomie und Politik auf die Gesellschaften auerhalb Europas und des Westens.
Dabei werden die in Amerika seit der ersten Besiedlung und in den Vereinigten
Staaten seit der Unabhngigkeitserklrung (1776) und der Verfassung (1787) bis
heute entwickelten Werthaltungen und Mastbe ausdrcklich eingeschlossen.
Gleichwohl ist von Europisierung die Rede, weil in Europa auch die Wurzeln der amerikanischen Entwicklung liegen und der oft gebrauchte Begriff der
Westen unter Einschluss von Japan hufig als bloer Kapitalismusexport,
als Hegemonialpolitik oder auch als Neokolonisierung missverstanden wird.
Die Europisierung der Welt nahm in der Frhen Neuzeit an der Wende vom
15. zum 16. Jahrhundert ihren Anfang. Mit den naturwissenschaftlichen (Neues
Weltbild durch Nikolaus Kopernikus: Sonne Mittelpunkt des Planetensystems,
Kugelgestalt der Erde) und technisch wissenschaftlichen (Erster Globus von
Martin Behaim; Kompass; Erd- und Seekarten) Erkenntnissen, deren wissenschaftliche Wurzeln zweifellos in wesentlichen Aspekten auch aus dem Mittleren und Fernen Osten stammten und durch die Europer nach Jahrhunderten
wieder aufgegriffen wurden (Mathematik, Geographie, Navigation), gingen die
ersten Entdeckungsfahrten einher. Ein wesentlicher Anlass dafr war unter anderen die Kontrolle des Landweges von Europa ber das seit 1453 von den
Osmanen kontrollierte Istanbul am Bosporus. Damit wurden auch die fr Eu-

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30

Jrgen Schwarz

ropa lebenswichtigen Importe aus dem Orient politisch und wirtschaftlich kontrolliert. Um dieser Abhngigkeit zu entgehen, versuchten die Europer unter
Einsatz ihrer neuen wissenschaftlichen Erkenntnisse sehr systematisch, einen
Seeweg nach Indien und in den Orient zu finden; nach Osten und nach Westen.
Columbus entdeckte 1492 den Seeweg nach Amerika, in die West-Richtung
also, die den Europern noch als unheimliche Weltgegend galt. Bartholomus
Dias fand 1488 bereits die Ost-Passage um Afrika und das Kap der Guten Hoffnung. Als erster segelte Vasco da Gama auf diesem Wege 1497/98 nach Indien.
Bereits 151922 umrundete Fernando de Magellan (Magalhes) dann die Erde.
Europa trat mit den Vlkern und Lndern der Welt in Verbindung.
Zunchst nur interessiert an den in Europa gesuchten Gtern: Gold, Edelsteine, Gewrze, Seide. Dann mehr und mehr auch interessiert an der Besiedlung der entdeckten Lnder, an ihrer dauerhaften Inbesitznahme und Kolonisierung. ber die Jahrhunderte entstanden europische Kolonialreiche und koloniale Abhngigkeiten auf allen Kontinenten und auf den Inseln. Sie wurden in
jeder Hinsicht geprgt durch die jeweiligen Kolonialherren: von der Sprache
ber die ffentliche Ordnung, die Einfhrung des jeweiligen Rechts bis hin zur
politischen und wirtschaftlichen Organisation. Wobei festgestellt werden muss,
dass es von Anfang an, in den Kolonialgebieten allerdings in unterschiedlicher
Ausprgung, eine Distanz zur indigenen Gesellschaft und Kultur gab; Apartheid
gab es nicht nur im Sinne der Rassentrennung, sondern auch hinsichtlich der
wie es den Kolonialherren meist schien kulturellen Rckstndigkeiten in den
Kolonien. Die Christliche Mission versuchte immer wieder, diese Trennungen
zu mildern oder aufzuheben; die einheimische Bevlkerung an die neuen Lebensformen heranzufhren; traditionelle Lebensformen in das europische Kulturgut zu inkulturieren. Sie steuerten damit im Sinne einer Modernisierung der
gegenber den europischen Segnungen zurckgebliebenen einheimischen Gesellschaften zum Europisierungsprozess bei. Bis in die Neuzeit gingen die
Europer davon aus, dass die unter europischen Bedingungen entwickelten
Lebensmodelle auch fr die Lnder auerhalb Europas sinnvoll und lebenswert
seien; geeignet, Unbildung zu beseitigen, Krankheit und Armut einzudmmen,
die unterentwickelten Gesellschaften politisch und wirtschaftlich zu stabilisieren. Dabei steht auer Frage, dass es in diesen Prozessen, in denen es immer
auch um Sicherung der Kolonialherrschaft ging, vielfach zur Vergewaltigung
der indigenen Lebensformen, zu ihrer Zerstrung und sogar zum Genozid gekommen ist. Bis in die 50er und 60er Jahre des 20. Jahrhunderts sind die Kolonien relativ stabil geblieben; die Prgung durch die Europer auch mit Hilfe
einheimischer Fhrungsschichten, die diese Europisierung auch im Sinne ihrer
Vlker als Fortschritt begrten, erschien nahezu unumkehrbar auch im Hinblick auf eine postkoloniale Entwicklung.
Tatschlich fand die Europisierung auch nach Auflsung der Kolonien
und nach ihrer Entlassung, wie es hie, in die Unabhngigkeit ihre Fortset-

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Die Europisierung der Welt

31

zung nicht nur in den ehemaligen Kolonien selbst, sondern auch durch ihre Einbindung in den Rahmen der internationalen Organisationen: in der nach westlichen Vorgaben entwickelten UNO und in ihren zahlreichen Sonderorganisationen bis hin zum Internationalen Gerichtshof, in dem wenn auch unter Bercksichtigung verschiedener Kulturkreise nach universalem Vlkerrecht, wie es
durch die Europer entwickelt wurde, Recht gesprochen wird. Die Regierenden
der Welt haben dabei auch die auf westlichen Grundlagen beruhende Politik der
Weltorganisation (z. B. Die Allgemeine Erklrung der Menschenrechte der
UNO 1948) akzeptiert, wenngleich sie immer deutlicher auch hier ihre durch
die jeweiligen nationalen Kulturtraditionen geprgten Vorstellungen und Interessen zum Ausdruck bringen.
III. Begegnung mit anderen Religionen und Kulturen
Im Folgenden sollen nherhin zwei Problemkreise der Europisierung angesprochen werden:
Zum einen sind dies die von Europa ausgegangenen geistigen Strmungen,
die letztendlich auch das Denken in den auereuropischen Lndern beeinflusst haben und gerade auch dort, wo der Bildungsstand und die Gelehrtentraditionen gro waren, mit ihren praktischen Folgerungen akzeptiert wurden.
Damit ist die Frage verbunden, warum in Sonderheit das europische Fortschrittsdenken akzeptiert wurde, wenngleich es doch ber Jahrhunderte nicht
zuletzt durch die groen Religionen geprgte andere Denkweisen gegeben
hat.
Zum anderen soll auf die umfassende Globalisierung (Europisierung) und
die sich entwickelnde Weltgesellschaft hingewiesen werden. Wobei die Frage
nahe liegt, wie die sich gegen die Europisierung wehrenden Lnder aus dieser zweifachen Dauerprgung herauskommen wollen.
Eine einfache Graphik knnte deutlich machen, in welch umfassender Weise
sich die kulturelle Basis der heutigen Weltpolitik von Europa ausgehend ber
die Jahrhunderte entwickelt hat. Zur Basis gehren natrlich auch die frhen
Entwicklungen des Orients und der Antike. In einer ganz bestimmten Weise des
Fortschrittsdenkens (transzendentes Denken) geht die kulturelle Entwicklung
vom Christentum aus. Ohne das sich in Europa entwickelnde Christentum
spter in Verbindung mit Renaissance und Aufklrung wre die Entwicklung
zur andauernden globalen Suprematie des Westens im 19. und 20. und jetzt im
21. Jahrhundert nicht mglich gewesen. Es wurden dabei Stufen durchlaufen,
die diesen Ausgang ab und an nur noch vage erkennen lassen; im Vordergrund
steht, eher von der Aufklrung ausgehend, die wissenschaftliche und die industrielle Revolution, die Entstehung der kapitalistischen Wirtschaftsform; die
wiederum westliche Normen und westliche Ordnungsvorstellungen hervorbrach-

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ten, die weil anderen kulturellen Entwicklungen machtpolitisch berlegen


die globale Hegemonie des Westens ermglicht haben. Das transzendente Denken stand bei dieser Entwicklung vor allem in Asien dem im Buddhismus, im
Taoismus, im Hinduismus verbreiteten und in der animistischen Religiositt
Afrikas und Lateinamerikas anzutreffenden kosmogonen Denken entgegen. Das
kosmogone Denken kann wo es strikt zur Geltung gebracht wird retardierende Auswirkungen auf wirtschaftliche, technisch-wissenschaftliche oder auch
politische Entwicklungen haben. Es kann also damit auch die vom Westen ausgehende Modernisierung von Gesellschaften aufhalten. Jedenfalls wird das hufig als Argument fr die frhere Unterlegenheit der Kulturen gegenber der
voranschreitenden Europisierung ins Feld gefhrt. Inzwischen sind die meisten
auereuropischen Religionen dabei, Wege in die Modernisierung zu finden.
Eine ambivalente Rolle spielt hier der Islam, der sich als monotheistische Religion durchaus skularisieren knnte, wenn dem nicht eine besonders strikte
konservative und legalistische Auslegung der Worte des Propheten entgegenstnde.
Die Strukturierung der Weltgesellschaft durch eine Globalisierung im umfassenden Sinne von den global handelnden Organisationen und Regimes ber die
globale Wissenschaft, die Versuche einer globalen Verrechtlichung bis zur globalen Kommunikation und zu globalen Marktprozessen haben alle Staaten der
Erde in einen europisch und westlich determinierten Rahmen gebunden, den
die Staaten praktisch nicht mehr verlassen knnen. Das gilt insbesondere auch
hinsichtlich der knftigen Entwicklungen im technisch-wissenschaftlichen Bereich. Diese globalen Einbindungen werden oftmals nur widerwillig oder der
erwarteten Vorteile wegen akzeptiert und unter dem Vorbehalt, fr die nationalen Eigeninteressen einen angemessenen Handlungsspielraum nutzen zu knnen.
Widerstand gegen die Europisierung der Welt hat es von Beginn an gegeben. In den Lndern naheliegend auf sehr unterschiedliche Weise und aus unterschiedlichen Grnden. Der aufgezeigte Strukturrahmen der Welt deutet zwar in
Richtung Weltgesellschaft und wird von den Lndern der Welt auch im Hinblick auf ihre internationalen Interessen akzeptiert. Von Integration einer Weltgesellschaft und von Einfgung der Nationen in diese Weltgesellschaft kann aber
nur in Grenzen gesprochen werden. Insofern kann auch von einer Weltregierung
oder von einer Weltinnenpolitik keine Rede sein; auch die Vision einer fderalen Weltrepublik erscheint utopisch. Nach wie vor geht es um internationale
Politik und ihre Gesetzmigkeiten, um eine Ordnung zwischen souvernen Nationen. Nach wie vor wehren sich die souvernen Staaten und ihre Gesellschaften zudem gegen eine sich verfestigende Dominanz westlicher Vorstellungen,
Normen und Konzepte, gegen jeglichen Weltzentralismus, der in den aufgezeigten Strukturen immer nach einem Oktroi des Westens aussehen wrde. Die
Staaten verteidigen konsequent ihre nationale Souvernitt in einem umfassenden Verstndnis und suchen im Inneren des Staates nach traditionellen kulturel-

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Die Europisierung der Welt

33

len Wurzeln, nach der gemeinsamen Geschichte, nach Integration der Gesellschaft, um auf diese Weise das internationale Profil des Landes unverkennbar
zu machen und die nationale Interessenpolitik zu strken. Es steht auer Frage,
dass die internationale Rolle des Staates nicht zuletzt auch vom Selbstverstndnis, vom Selbstbewusstsein des Volkes und von der Identifikationsmglichkeit
der Menschen mit ihrem Lande abhngt, das heit letztlich auch von einer
lebendigen, von der Gesellschaft, von den Menschen gelebten umfassenden
(nationalen) Kultur. So unumgnglich es ist, politische, wirtschaftliche, wissenschaftliche und kulturelle Erkenntnisse und Erfahrungen von auen in der nationalen Entwicklung zu bercksichtigen, so notwendig aber erscheint es auch, die
nationalen kulturellen Traditionen lebendig zu erhalten, sie, wo es angemessen
ist, fortzuentwickeln und mit den tglich gebten Lebensformen zu verbinden.
Sie sollten nicht musealen oder folkloristischen Charakter annehmen und sollten andererseits auch nicht einem internationalen Zwang zur Konformitt ausgesetzt sein.
In diesem Zusammenhang sind auch die in einem Land ausgetragenen Rivalitten von Vlkern, Ethnien und Interessengruppierungen zu sehen; dabei geht es
um die Durchsetzung unterschiedlicher Interessen, um Lebensmglichkeiten,
um Machtpositionen, letztlich aber auch um die Integration des Staates und um
die Geschlossenheit der Gesellschaft im Hinblick auf die Interessenvertretung
aller nach auen und um die Auswirkungen der kulturbedingten nationalen Einstellungen auf die internationale Politik.
Dazu einige Beispiele: Japan etwa, ein hochentwickeltes und nach auen integriert erscheinendes Land, musste im 19. Jahrhundert mit Waffengewalt fr
den internationalen Handel geffnet werden und bernahm spter, vielfach unter Verzicht auf traditionales Kulturgut, in besonderem Mae europische oder
westliche Errungenschaften, so dass man es schon bald zum Westen zhlte.
Inzwischen wird der Verlust traditionaler Kulturgter beklagt und die geradezu
botmige bernahme westlicher Denk- und Handlungsweisen kritisiert. Staat
und Gesellschaft versuchen nicht zuletzt zur Strkung der nationalen Identitt
die Wiederbelebung verdorrter japanischer Kulturgter. Es ist von einem
neuen japanischen Isolationismus gesprochen worden. Solche Tendenzen werden sich aus naheliegenden Grnden nicht durchsetzen; sie deuten aber an,
welche politischen und gesellschaftlichen Vorbehalte gerade im japanischen
Mikrokosmos auch bei einer dem Westen zugerechneten modernen Industrienation bestehen und umgekehrt welche Probleme sich angesichts der
offensichtlichen kulturellen Defizite fr ein modernes Land ergeben.
Auch was Russland betrifft, machen jngere Studien darauf aufmerksam,
dass dieses sich nach dem Zusammenbruch der UdSSR dem Westen gegenber
weit ffnende Land wieder auf Distanz geht, nicht in Scheu vor dem internationalen Wettbewerb, sondern auf der Suche nach der kulturellen Identifikations-

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34

Jrgen Schwarz

mglichkeit mit Russland und seiner Geschichte und nach der unverkennbar
russischen Rolle in der internationalen Politik.
hnliches lsst sich in der VR China beobachten. Es ist bekannt, dass Deng
Xiaoping das Land dem Westen gegenber ffnete und eine wirtschaftliche Liberalisierung des Landes einleitete, dass es ihm aber nicht mglich war, diesen
einschneidenden Vernderungen eine demokratische Reform des politischen Systems folgen zu lassen. Es gab auch keinen funktionalen Automatismus, etwa
hinsichtlich einer Reform des mit dem Wirtschaftssystem so eng zusammenhngenden Rechtssystems. Auch der Einfluss des internationalen Rechtes konnte
von chinesischer Seite eingedmmt werden. Das mag andeuten, dass die globalen normativen Einflussmglichkeiten (impact) relativiert werden mssen, wenn
nationale politische Strukturen (Sozialistischer Staat unter der demokratischen
Diktatur des Volkes) oder aber kulturelle Traditionen dem entgegenstehen.
Indien, das in einem langen Prozess des Widerstandes seine Unabhngigkeit
von Grobritannien gewann, hat mit andauernden inneren Integrationsschwierigkeiten zu kmpfen; Multiethnizitt und eine damit verbundene Vielfalt der Kulturen lsst Indien kaum ein klares nationales Profil und eine entsprechend gewichtete Rolle in der internationalen Politik finden. Wenngleich der frhere koloniale Einfluss Englands nicht zuletzt auch als einigendes Band deutlich
auszumachen ist und im Sinne einer notwendigen Modernisierung dem Westen
in bestimmten Bereichen die Tore geffnet werden.
Auch bei anderen modernen Staaten sind die angezeigten Balancierungsversuche zwischen fortschreitender Modernisierung und Anpassung an die globalen Entwicklungen auf der einen und der Wiederbelebung nationaler Traditionen und Kultur als Ferment einer modernen Gesellschaft auf der anderen Seite
noch nicht abgeschlossen; es deutet sich aber an, dass diese Staaten den nationalen Weg in die sich entwickelnde Weltgesellschaft finden werden. Das aber
wird nicht unter dem Banner der Asiatisierung der Welt vonstatten gehen, das
noch vor zehn Jahren heftig und voller Optimismus geschwungen wurde. Davon
ist gerade wegen der Orientierung an der westlichen Fortschrittsmentalitt heute
kaum noch etwas zu hren. Gleichwohl aber scheinen etwa in den Staaten Sdostasiens die indigenen Kulturentwicklungen weniger stark beschdigt als etwa
in den Staaten Afrikas. Neuere Studien scheinen auch hier mit guten Argumenten zu belegen, dass eine Balance zwischen wiederbelebten kulturellen Traditionen und einer notwendigen Modernisierung mglich ist.
Ganz anders, um noch ein letztes Beispiel zu nennen, sieht es in Afrika aus.
Hier handelt es sich von einigen Staaten im Norden und von Sdafrika abgesehen in der Mehrzahl um aus der Kolonialzeit desolat hervorgegangene Staaten (failing states oder failed states), deren traditionelle Kulturen weithin schon
am Beginn ihrer Unabhngigkeit zerstrt waren, deren Vlkerschaften oftmals
getrennt in verschiedenen Staaten leben, deren nationale Integrationsprozesse

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Die Europisierung der Welt

35

kaum abschliebar erscheinen, deren kulturelle oder zivilisatorische Zerklftung


mit allen negativen Folgen in Politik und Wirtschaft Legende ist. Zahlreiche
Sanierungsanstze und Reformkonzepte sind fehlgeschlagen. Die kulturelle Basis fr einen Neuaufbau der Staaten ist weithin zerstrt; inzwischen auch dort,
wo einmal hoffnungsvolle Grundlagen geschaffen wurden. Peter Scholl-Latour
hat deshalb zurecht einem seiner Bcher den Titel gegeben: Totenklage ber
Afrika. Der globale Rahmen wird konstruktiv kaum wirksam, die negativen
Einflsse berwiegen; afrikanische Lnder sdlich der Sahara spielen international mit der erfreulichen Ausnahme Sdafrikas keine positive Rolle; sie werden der Welt zunehmend zur Last. In Tansania ist eines der wenigen hoffnungsvollen afrikanischen Entwicklungsexperimente, der Ujaama-Sozialismus, der an
typische Kulturtraditionen des Landes anzuknpfen versuchte, gescheitert.
IV. Einige entwicklungstheoretische Anstze
Der Westen (Industrielnder) hat die Staaten der Dritten Welt generell als
Entwicklungslnder bezeichnet, die nach wirtschaftlichen Kriterien in verschiedene Gruppen (Schwellenlnder etc.) eingeteilt wurden und denen nach Magabe bei der Entwicklung ihrer Lnder Untersttzung zukommt. Dazu sind
einige entwicklungstheoretische Anstze ausgebildet worden, von denen in
diesem Zusammenhang die wichtigsten skizziert werden sollen, weil sie die
angedeuteten Probleme zwischen Europisierung und autonomer, vor allem kultureller Entwicklung herausstellen knnen.
Ein Schwerpunkt lag zunchst auf dem generellen Prinzip einer umfassenden
Modernisierung der Entwicklungslnder. Man sah die Ursachen der Unterentwicklung in den Entwicklungslndern selbst. Diesen so die Annahme knnte
mit den umfassenden Erfahrungen und Konzepten des Westens begegnet werden. Also eine gewisse herablassende Attitude, weil die jeweils besonderen Situationen der Drittwelt-Lnder kaum beachtet wurden. Die Entwicklungslnder
sollten mglichst viel berflssigen, das hie in der Regel kulturellen und traditionellen Ballast abwerfen, um Staat und Gesellschaft einen effizienten takeoff der Modernisierung zu ermglichen. Im Zentrum dieses Konzeptes stand die
massive wirtschaftliche Untersttzung und die Vermittlung westlicher Vorbilder
und Methoden beim Aufbau politischer, wirtschaftlicher und rechtlicher Institutionen. Kulturelle Aspekte wurden dabei in den Hintergrund geschoben. Im
Sinne des Funktionalismus sollten sich alle anderen modernen Entwicklungen
aus den ersten sichtbaren wirtschaftlichen Fortschritten ergeben. Ohne weitere
Schritte dieser Versuchsphase darlegen zu knnen, muss heute festgestellt werden, dass das Konzept der Modernisierung letztlich gescheitert ist; wenngleich
einzelne Elemente der Forderung einer Modernisierung zweifellos nach wie vor
relevant sind. Vor allem die kulturellen Traditionen der Lnder waren verkannt
und nicht in den Prozess der Modernisierung einbezogen worden.

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36

Jrgen Schwarz

Eine andere Perspektive vertritt die Dependenztheorie, die vor allem in Lateinamerika entwickelt wurde. Sie sieht die Ursachen fr die Unterentwicklung
bei den Industrielndern, die im Rahmen des kapitalistischen Wettbewerbs die
Entwicklungslnder ausbeuten und in der Abhngigkeit halten wollen und dabei die kulturellen Traditionen und Grundsteine zerstren. Um sich aus der Abhngigkeit zu befreien, ist es notwendig, vor allem die wirtschaftlichen Beziehungen zu den Industrielndern aufzugeben und sich auch in kultureller Hinsicht auf eine autonome, nach auen mglichst abgeschlossene Entwicklung zu
konzentrieren. Auch dieser Theorieansatz ist an den Realitten gescheitert. Es
ist praktisch keinem Land mehr mglich, sich aus den internationalen Verflechtungen herauszulsen, Handel zu betreiben, von internationalen Organisationen
Untersttzung zu akzeptieren und sich gleichwohl von der Auenwelt zu isolieren. Selbst Nord-Korea sieht sich heute gentigt, eine gewisse ffnung des
Landes einzuleiten. Die Wiederbelebung traditioneller Lebensmodelle, die
Rckkehr zur indigenen Kultur (Rckkehr der Zeit) kann allein nicht gengen,
um ein Land in autonomer Entwicklung zu modernisieren. Ein gescheitertes
Modell in dieser Hinsicht ist das lngst vergessene sozialistische Albanien.
Gleichwohl erscheint es durchaus legitim und mglich, die Entwicklung von
Abhngigkeitsstrukturen zu vermeiden und damit hufige (auch zerstrerische)
Eingriffe von auen in die inneren Angelegenheiten der Staaten zu mindern.
Eine Schlussfolgerung soll hier noch erwhnt werden: die Neomodernisierungstheorie. Sie sieht die Ursachen falscher Entwicklung auf beiden Seiten,
bei den Industrielndern wie bei den Entwicklungslndern. Sie wird heute allgemein akzeptiert und ist zum wesentlichen, wenn auch sehr generellen Leitprinzip der Entwicklungspolitik des Westens, zu einer Art aufgeklrter Europisierung geworden. Man verspricht sich von diesem Ansatz eine gewisse Balance
zwischen den Erwartungen und Vorbehalten auf der einen und den gezielten
Hilfsmglichkeiten auf der anderen Seite; materielle und psychologische Faktoren, die jeweiligen kulturellen Grundbedingungen und lebensfhigen Traditionen sollen gleichermaen bercksichtigt werden. Den Entwicklungslndern soll
Raum bleiben, um selbst zu entscheiden, was als berflssiger Ballast abgeworfen werden kann und was als historisch und kulturell unabdingbar fr Gesellschaft und Staat erhalten und gepflegt werden muss. Die Geberlnder wiederum
knnen auf dieser Basis ber die ihnen unaufgebbar erscheinenden Konditionen
verhandeln, ohne ihren Hilfsangeboten oder ihren Entwicklungsansten den
Charakter eines Oktroi zu geben.
Eine Variante der Neomodernisierung ist die Theorie der Akkulturation, die
vorstehend bereits skizziert wurde. Sie sucht die kulturellen Aspekte im Verhltnis von nationaler Entwicklung und Europisierung der Welt zu bercksichtigen, zu strken und deutlicher, als bisher geschehen, der internationalen Politik zur Bercksichtigung zu empfehlen. Die Aspekte einer kulturellen Autonomie sind auch in den politischen Prozessen des Peace keeping oder des Peace

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Die Europisierung der Welt

37

making bisher zu sehr an den Rand geschoben worden. Ihre zentrale Bedeutung
liegt im Irak klar auf der Hand so wie in den Prozessen des staatlichen und
gesellschaftlichen Wiederaufbaus auf dem Balkan oder in Afghanistan, im Nahen Osten, in Staaten Afrikas oder Lateinamerikas.
Zum Ende noch eine politische Schlussfolgerung: Im Zentrum einer Auflsung des Spannungsverhltnisses zwischen der manifesten und fortschreitenden
Europisierung der Welt und der sie ablehnenden Nationen sollten erneut die in
den 50er und 60er Jahren des 20. Jahrhunderts diskutierten Konzepte des Nation-building treten, die auf eine Entwicklung der sich ihrer Traditionen, ihrer
kulturellen Basis und ihrer nationalen Identitt bewussten Nationen zu modernen Staaten hinzielen.
Literatur
Buruma, Ian: Okzidentalismus, Mnchen 2005
Dorling Kindersley Verlag (Hrsg.): Menschen dieser Welt (Engl. First Edition: Encyclopedia of People), Starnberg 2004
Galtung, Johan: Peace and peaceful means. Peace and conflict, development and civilization, Oslo 1996
Goodheart, Eugene: From culture to ideology, Partisan Review, 1994, Nr. 61, S. 267
276
Harrigan, Anthony: The limits of modernization, in: Contemporary Review, 1986,
Nr. 249, S. 113118
Haywood, John u. a. (Hrsg.): Vlker, Staaten und Kulturen. Ein universalhistorischer
Atlas, Braunschweig 1998 (English Edit. Oxford 1997)
Huntington, Samuel P.: Kampf der Kulturen. Die Neugestaltung der Weltpolitik im
21. Jahrhundert, Mnchen 1996 (engl. The Clash of Civilizations, New York 1996)
Johannes Paul II: Address of His Holiness Pope John Paul II to the Fiftieth General
Assembly of the United Nations Organization, 5. Okt. 1995
Botschaft zum Weltfriedenstag, 1. Jan. 2001
Kng, Hans: Weltethos fr Weltpolitik und Weltwirtschaft, Mnchen 1997
Lind, William: Defending western culture, in: Foreign Policy, 1991, Nr. 84, S. 4050
Malinowski, Bronislaw: A scientific theory of culture, and other essays, London 1935
Ratzinger, Joseph Kardinal: Werte in Zeiten des Umbruchs. Die Herausforderungen
der Zukunft bestehen, Freiburg 2005
Rotte, Ralph: Vom Zwiespalt der Kulturen zum Clash of Civilizations, Neuried
2002
Schwarz, Jrgen: Akkulturation Grundlage internationaler Ordnungspolitik, in: Jrgen Schwarz (Hrsg.): Der politische Islam. Intentionen und Wirkungen, Paderborn
1993, S. 191206
Toynbee, Arnold: Die Welt und der Westen, Stuttgart 1953
Weber, Alfred: Kulturgeschichte als Kultursoziologie, Mnchen 1960

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38

Jrgen Schwarz

Zusammenfassung
Europisierung ist der ber Jahrhunderte andauernde Prozess der tiefgehenden Beeinflussung der Vlker der Welt, ihrer Kulturen und Lebensweisen, durch die von Europa und Nordamerika ausgehenden Geistesstrmungen, Religionen, Denk- und Verhaltensweisen. Mit Entwicklung der klassischen Renaissance, der Aufklrung und der
modernen Wissenschaften traten in Europa und damit auch in der auereuropischen
Welt sukzessive die Methoden von Wirtschaft, Naturwissenschaften und Technik in
den Vordergrund. Fortschritt, Machbarkeit, Rationalitt und Modernitt verdrngten als
dominierende Maximen zunehmend die religise und moralische Grundlegung. Vermehrt im 21. Jahrhundert stt nunmehr diese Europisierung an Grenzen, die man als
neuzeitliche Renaissance indigener Kulturen, vor allem auch ihrer religisen und ethischen Grundeinstellungen, bezeichnen knnte. Auf sehr unterschiedliche Art versuchen die Vlker der Welt ihre originren Kulturen und die damit einhergehenden
Denk- und Verhaltensweisen wiederzuentdecken und von dorther die radikal skularisierten europischen Einflsse zu balancieren, zurckzudrngen oder auch zu verndern. Aus diesen Prozessen knnen Spannungen und Konflikte entstehen, die nur im
Sinne einer selbstbewuten Akkulturation, durch Selbstbesinnung auf die jeweiligen
kulturellen Grundlagen und durch interkulturellen Dialog gelst werden knnen.

Summary
For centuries Europe has been of decisive influence on peoples, cultures and societies of the whole world. It is still Europe and North America where the mainstream of
thinking and the long lasting political, scientific and economic impact come from. But
since the Renaissance and the Age of Enlightenment and during the following development of sciences, economy and technology the moral, spiritual and religious content
of Europeanization has been fading away. Today maxims like progress, feasibility,
rationality and modernity are the dominant orientation of the worldwide development.
In the 21st century this type of a radical secularized Europeanization seems to be confronted with what could be called the cultural renaissance of the non-Western world.
This movement is still in its beginning; but it is already quite obvious that these countries do not want to abstain any longer from what they call their cultural foundations.
They try to revitalize their indigenous cultural roots and to develop their cultural identity, even if they should have to pay for modernization and material progress. This
could lead to discrepancies or even conflicts with the western world. But also a cultural rapprochement could be attempted. It should be called peaceful intercultural dialogue and international acculturation.

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Mistaken National Identity:


Samuel Huntington's Who Are We?
By Kenneth D. Whitehead
I.
Harvard Professor Samuel P. Huntington has long been considered one of
America's most distinguished political scientists. With his 1996 book, The
Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order,1 he demonstrated that
human societies and civilizations are not driven by politics, economics, and
secular concerns alone, as so often seems to be the way they are viewed and
described today. Much more fundamentally, they are based on religions and
cultures.
Huntington's division of the world into eight major civilizations, for the
most part, corresponded with the territories of the world's great religions. Interestingly enough, however, he identified no single Christian civilization, but
rather distinguished three of them: Western, Latin American, and Orthodox.2
His analysis of the past, present, and possible future clashes between the various world civilizations has since resonated very widely, especially after 9/11,
since Huntington gave considerable attention to what he called a high propensity to resort to violence among Muslims, and he also noted, pertinently, that
wherever one looks along the perimeter of Islam, Muslims have problems living peaceably with their neighbors.3
In his new book, Who Are We? The Challenges to America's National Identity,4 Professor Huntington takes up again some of the themes of his Clash of
Civilizations, but this time from a somewhat different perspective. In this book,
he examines America's national identity in the context of today's globalization;
and, in an impassioned analysis that could almost be called a polemic except
for the author's relentless and dry factual piling up of data and citations one
1 Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World
Order (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1996).
2 Ibid., p. 2.
3 Ibid., pp. 256 & 258.
4 Samuel P. Huntington, Who Are We? The Challenges to America's National Identity (New York: Simon & Schuster, 2004).

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40

Kenneth D. Whitehead

upon the other, he analyzes the threat he sees that various aspects of globalization pose to the integrity of the United States as a nation as well as to the very
national identity of Americans. For him this threat derives primarily from the
virtual unrestricted immigration policy that has been followed by the United
States since 1965.
Professor Huntington is alarmed in particular by the huge numbers of immigrants of Hispanic origin coming to the United States who, in his opinion, are
no longer being assimilated into American society in the way that earlier generations of immigrants were assimilated. He is especially concerned at the number of immigrants from a contiguous country, Mexico, crowding into the United
States, legally and illegally, in ever increasing numbers. From constituting only
14 percent of all immigrants into the United States in the 1970s, Mexicans in
the 1990s amounted to 25 percent of the total immigration. In the year 2000
alone, nearly 8 million Mexicans legally entered the U.S., where Mexican immigrants already constituted 27.6 percent of the total foreign-born population in
that year. The next largest contingents, by comparison, were Chinese and Filipinos, who constituted only 4.9 and 4.3 percent of the foreign-born population
respectively. Professor Huntington sees current Mexican immigration as leading toward the demographic reconquista of areas Americans took from Mexico
by force in the 1830s and 1840s.5
Professor Huntington is hardly the first to raise the question of what all this
means for the future of America. In fact, the number of his sources and citations is quite astonishing: we would never have believed that so much had been
written on the subject if we did not see it all laid out in his extremely dense
text and notes. He certainly manages to make the case that there is a problem.
He himself fears that America could lose its core culture, become bi-furcated, and evolve into a loose confederation of ethnic, racial, cultural, and
political groups with little or nothing in common apart from their location in
the territory of what had been the United States of America (emphasis
added).6
Professor Huntington is not at all unmindful quite the contrary! that the
current trends he fears in addition to unrestricted immigration namely, multiculturalism, diversity, bilingual education, affirmative action, the downgrading
of patriotism, and the like are strongly favored within the United States by
powerful secularists and Enlightenment-based liberal elites, if not by what
might be called the current American establishment itself. Undaunted by today's reigning notion of political correctness, or the idea that we should
never be critical of those of diverse ethnic, cultural, or religious identities,
5
6

Ibid., p. 221.
Ibid., p. 19.

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Mistaken National Identity: Samuel Huntington's Who Are We?

41

he is apparently little concerned about the sensibilities that usually moderate


today's discourse on anything thought to be covered by political correctness.
He is quite bluntly critical, in fact, of all those he sees undermining or harming
the traditional America and the American identity that he loves. He attacks
multiculturalism in particular and constantly reminds his readers that, since declaring independence from Britain in 1776, the United States has embodied a
distinct culture based upon the noble ideas enshrined in the Declaration of Independence and the 1789 Constitution of the United States.
Given the rather unpopular stands which Professor Huntington takes, especially in the present cultural climate, it should not be surprising that Who Are
We? The Challenges to America's National Identity has not met with a uniformly favorable response from the critics. Most of the reviews of the book to
date, in fact, are as critical of Professor Huntington as he is of those whose
agendas he opposes. Perhaps not surprisingly, he has even been attacked as a
racist possibly the most damaging epithet that can be applied to anyone in
the United States today. To call someone a racist is immediately to place him
outside the pale of acceptable society and discourse. Professor Huntington does
not seem to care, however; he seems quite unshakably convinced of the rightness of his views. Meanwhile, though, some of his other critics have more temperately made a number of perhaps valid points suggesting that while his thesis
is certainly grounded in some troubling current realities, his fears for the future
of America and of the American identity may nevertheless be more than a little
exaggerated.7
However that may be, this Harvard professor's book has stirred up a lively
and in many ways an acrimonious debate among the intellectual classes, and it
will probably continue to do so for some time to come, given the author's prominence, the book's subject matter, and the rather belligerent, almost defiant
way the author has approached that subject matter.
II.
In this paper I want to concentrate on an issue to which most of Professor
Huntington's critics and his votaries and supporters, for that matter have
given little attention, preoccupied as most of them are by his lack of political
correctness and unwillingness to observe some of the taboos in our contemporary society. I want to talk about his idea of what constitutes the American
national identity to which he refers so prominently in his title. Although he is
7 See especially the many letters sent in by a distinguished array of critics to Foreign Policy magazine (May/June, 2004) critiquing an article mostly excerpted from
Who Are We? The Challenge to America's National Identity which Professor Huntington had published in the March/April, 2004, of the same journal.

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42

Kenneth D. Whitehead

impressively learned in the history and development of the United States and of
the American character, and fervent in his patriotism and his allegiance to traditional Americanism as he understands it, I believe he is in some ways quite
wrong-headed and indeed ultimately mistaken in his explanation of what basically constitutes the American character and America's national identity.
Briefly, his account stresses that the United States was founded by British
settlers who brought to these shores a distinct culture and way of life that included the English language, a dissenting version of Protestant Christianity, a
love of freedom, and a respect for the rule of law. These factors eventually
developed into what many have styled an American Creed a civic creed,
obviously, not a religious one that included principles of liberty, equality,
democracy, civil rights, non-discrimination, and the rule of law.8
The successive waves of immigrants that came to the United States quite
naturally and regularly tended to accept these values, and thus they became
assimilated into what Professor Huntington calls America's Anglo-Protestant
culture. I think he exaggerates unduly the extent to which dissenting Protestantism constitutes an essential and continuing component of the American
identity. Even the earliest settlers of America had to modify some of the tenets
of their original Puritanism or Protestantism merely in order to live in peace
with each other, much less have a society that could eventually admit Catholics, Jews, and even unbelievers on the equal basis in which these original
settlers also strongly believed, on Professor Huntington's own testimony.
It is, of course, undeniable that the Protestantism of America's early and
even some of her later settlers had an enormous influence on the formation of
America's national identity. Once formed, however, that identity then constituted a new thing in itself, which did not necessarily require a continuing link
with all of the elements that had once originally served in its formation. Specifically, it was no longer necessary to be a Protestant or to subscribe to a Protestant version of Christianity in order to be an American in the full sense, possessed of an authentic American national identity. Catholics or Jews or nonbelievers could also qualify as Americans in the full sense. And in any case,
the Protestantism of the early Puritans, like that of the later revivalist Christians, eventually became attenuated to the point where nearly all Protestant
Americans today have a very different outlook and very different attitudes than
those exhibited by their Protestant co-religionists back in the days when the
American identity was being formed.
However that may be, though, Professor Huntington still insists on characterizing American culture, even today, as an Anglo-Protestant Culture, and his
great fear today, as already noted above, is that more recent immigrants, espe8

Ibid., p. 338.

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Mistaken National Identity: Samuel Huntington's Who Are We?

43

cially Hispanic, are not assimilating any longer into America's basic society
and culture. He even declares that the principal theme of this book is the continuing centrality of Anglo-Protestant culture to American national identity
(emphasis added).9
As I say, though, I believe his insistence upon the Protestant component of
America's basic identity today is greatly overdrawn, but Professor Huntington
is nevertheless surely quite unusual among modern American academic political scientists in according to religion such an important role in the formation
and continuation of the American identity. He goes further. He unabashedly
affirms that America is a religious and primarily Christian country, encompassing several religious minorities, adhering to Anglo-Protestant values, speaking English, maintaining its European cultural heritage, and committed to the
principles of [its] Creed . . . America was founded in large part for religious
reasons, and religious movements have shaped its evolution for almost four
centuries.10
The fact alone that Samuel Huntington is prepared to affirm that America is
a Christian country would ipso facto probably be enough today to provoke the
kind of opposition that he has in fact aroused, if most of his critics were not
otherwise so strongly focused on his alleged racism. It is indeed remarkable
that in our present secularized society an American academic and from Harvard of all places! would dare to make such an affirmation. True to his insight in the Clash of Civilizations that religion is often the basis of society and
culture, he is certainly prepared to affirm this in the case of America as well.
It is important for us to remember, however, that for Samuel Huntington the
Christianity that informs American culture is Protestantism. He makes this
point over and over again and very plainly. In his view, the successful Americanization of, for example, Catholic immigrants has necessarily involved what
he calls the Protestantization of the Catholic Church in this country. Even
American Jews, he holds, have undergone this kind of Protestantization. As
for Catholics, he admits that they do not like people referring to the Protestantization' of their religion. Yet in some degree that is precisely what Americanization involves. He goes on:
Given the Protestant origins of America, the overwhelming predominance of Protestantism for over two centuries, the central and pervasive role of Protestant values
and assumptions in American culture and society, how could it be otherwise? . . .
Catholics in societies that have historically been shaped by Protestantism Germany, Switzerland, the Netherlands, and the United States typically have values
more similar to those of their Protestant countrymen than to Catholics in other
countries.
9
10

Ibid., p. 30.
Ibid., p. 20.

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44

Kenneth D. Whitehead

Catholics and Protestants within these societies [he quotes another study] do not
show markedly different values: Dutch Catholics today are about as Calvinist as the
members of the Dutch Reformed Church.11

Probably from his own point of view Professor Huntington thinks he needs to
posit a Protestantized Catholicism which unlike Hispanic Catholicism, for
example is compatible with authentic Americanism as he defines it. Otherwise he would be excluding at one stroke the largest organized body of Christians by far in his Christian America, namely, the nation's sixty-plus million
Catholics. But his analysis and explanations here are really quite superficial and
defective. Although there is no doubt some truth in the idea that Catholics living in countries or societies along with Protestants often share with them some
common (national?) values and attitudes, his idea that the nature of Catholicism
and of the Catholic Church has somehow been changed or could be changed
by the interaction of Catholics with their fellow citizens in America or,
more pertinently, that Catholics who are true Catholics (not Protestantized
ones) would be incapable of being loyal Americans and adherents to the
American Creed all this is nothing more than blatant prejudice and harkens
back to the days when an Al Smith could never be elected president of the
United States because he was supposedly subservient to a foreign potentate, the
pope. The history of Catholics in America over the past couple of centuries has
surely demonstrated the contrary, as Professor Huntington, of all people, ought
to know.
His basic problem seems to be an inability even to imagine contrary to the
plain evidence of history that Catholics (or Jews) might possibly remain firm
adherents to their own authentic religious faith and yet still be patriotic and
loyal Americans also able to subscribe sincerely on a civic level to the American Creed. It is not necessary to be Protestantized in order to qualify as a
true American or share an American identity. The notion that it might bespeaks
on Professor Huntington's part a prejudice against and an ignorance of the
Catholic Church which is quite unworthy of him but which unfortunately is
at least sporadically evident throughout his book. In spite of his impressive erudition, he really seems to know very little about the Catholic Church, including
the Church in America and what he does know, he does not appear to like.
He almost never quotes Catholic sources, for example, and even seems to be
mostly unaware that any such sources even exist.
Actually, his treatment of religion generally, including his favored Protestantism, is often quite superficial, in spite of some of the genuine insights about
religion of his for which he has been widely credited. He is given, for example,
to quoting statistics from polls where people say they are religious, though
little or nothing is evident from these polls about their actual religious beliefs
11

Ibid., pp. 9697.

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Mistaken National Identity: Samuel Huntington's Who Are We?

45

or real degree of their religious commitment. Nevertheless, this is the kind of


evidence he adduces for the proposition that Americans continue to be a
Christian people.12 He virtually never gets into questions of what might or
might not be true in religion, or what moral demands upon the individual or
the citizen a true religious commitment might entail. It is significant that one of
his often-used words is: religiosity.13 This word aptly describes what, too often, he himself erroneously takes to be religion.
III.
It was surprising enough in this day and age that a Harvard political scientist
could declare the United States to be still a Christian country. But in another
sense it was perhaps even more surprising that the scholar in question would
then promptly turn around and deliberately limit the meaning of Christianity to
exclude in principle and from the start the major Christian body existing not
only in America, but in the world, namely, the Catholic Church. Since he believes that Christianity is an essential element of the American identity which
he also believes is seriously threatened today we might have imagined that he
would at least want to widen his definition of Christianity in order to include as
many Christian Americans as possible who just might be of his way of thinking, and who might wish as ardently as he to affirm America as the unique
historical experiment that America has in fact been.
Nothing of the sort, however: he makes quite clear that the only Catholics he
fully accepts are those he believes have been Protestantized by America.
Otherwise his basic hostility towards the Catholic Church the word hostility
is not too strong comes across in a number of places in the course of his
narrative. His strong disapproval of Mexican and Latino immigration, for example, seems in significant part to be based upon the culture of Catholicism14
which he believes these immigrants bring with them (although he himself documents the equally significant number of conversions to Evangelical Christianity
among Mexicans and other Latino immigrants).
The culture of Catholicism itself, however, will evidently never do. Suddenly, it even begins to become clear why he perhaps classified Latin America
as a separate civilization in his earlier book, and was unwilling to posit one
Christian civilization tout court: some versions of Christianity, including perhaps also the separate civilization of Eastern Orthodoxy, evidently for him
simply do not measure up to the demands of the Anglo-Protestant culture he
champions.
12
13
14

Ibid., p. 15.
Ibid., e. g., p. 365.
Ibid., p. 254.

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46

Kenneth D. Whitehead

An integral part of his project, then, amazingly enough, thus seems to entail
the celebration and revival of: WASPism, that is, of the ascendancy of the
White Anglo-Saxon Protestant, or WASP. This is hard to believe. Of all the
contemporary projects that might be attempted or imagined today, surely the
revival of the WASP ascendancy would seem to be one of the least likely ever
to succeed. Most of us had thought that former President George H. W. Bush,
for example, was one of the last of the WASPs; his son, President George W.
Bush, already quite consciously places himself in the ranks of the Evangelicals,
who continue to demonstrate a certain vitality that is no longer evident in most
of the old-line, mainline Protestant denominations in America.
For when we look at Protestantism in America today, we no longer discern
the strong Christian conviction and commitment that motivated both the early
Puritan settlers in America and the later revivalist Christians. The Puritans
believed in the faith they professed and in the city on the hill they were striving to build. The same thing was true of some of the subsequent revivals in
American history that Professor Huntington identifies. However, we see nothing
remotely comparable on the religious scene in America today. Who today believes in the Protestantism that the early American settlers believed in? Does
Professor Huntington? Does he subscribe, for example, to the Augsburg Confession, the Westminster Confession, the Thirty-Nine Articles of the Anglican
Church, or some more modern version of Protestantism? Or does he simply
affirm the importance of Protestantism because it was clearly one of the most
important elements in the formation of the original American identity?
If the latter, he has gotten it all exactly backwards. He resembles those idealists who have sometimes praised the Catholic Church, not because they believed in her creed, but because they admired the achievements of Western civilization, and they understand that the Catholic Church was the mother of that
civilization. We are almost inevitably reminded here of a figure such as the
French nationalist Charles Maurras, a notable figure especially in the period
between the two world wars. Maurras decreed that Catholicism had to be an
integral component of the French national identity that he cherished because he
understood what the Catholic Church had contributed to the greatness of
France; meanwhile, though, he scarcely believed a word of the Church's creed.
Is Professor Huntington touting Protestantism in the same way? If so, he is
trying to link America's future prospects to a diminishing force. That National
Opinion Research Center, in a recent report entitled The Vanishing Protestant
Majority, noted that the various Protestant denominations in the United States
dropped from 63 percent of the population of the United States in 1993 down to
only 52 percent in 2002.15 And these numbers continue to dwindle. It would
15

Quoted by Greg Erlandson in Our Sunday Visitor, August 29, 2004.

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Mistaken National Identity: Samuel Huntington's Who Are We?

47

seem that Protestantism today is hardly in any condition to lead any revival or
revitalization of America as God's new chosen people. Nor is it just a matter of
decreasing numbers; it also comports a seemingly drastic loss of faith and conviction. We can only contemplate with dismay such things as, for example, the
spectacle of the Episcopalians blessing homosexual unions and ordaining as
a bishop a man who deserted his family in order to enter into an open homosexual relationship. We see a United Methodist Church at its recent quadrennial
general conference voting only by a narrow margin after an unedifying internal
battle to uphold traditional Christian morality in sexual matters. The Presbyterians, for their part, put off voting on the issue until another year because they
apparently could no longer agree on what Scripture nevertheless very plainly
says about sexual morality. Several Protestant denominations in America have
actually endorsed, and some even promote, such phenomena antithetical to the
Gospel as so-called same-sex marriage or legalized abortion.
On the evidence, Protestantism in America today is not the Protestantism that
inspired and motivated America's early settlers. If the American identity truly
depends upon the continued vitality of Protestantism, then we are perhaps in
bigger trouble than even Professor Huntington imagines. And while it is true
that many sincere Christians, Protestants, Catholics, and Orthodox, continue to
try to affirm their faith in a society and culture increasingly hostile to religious
faith, the degree to which some Protestant denominations in particular seem to
have succumbed to the pressures of the dominant secular culture cannot inspire
much confidence in their ability to revive any Anglo-Protestant culture.
In our increasingly morally decadent America, it is true that Evangelical
Christians have shown more conviction and commitment than mainline Protestants. Many Evangelicals have proved to be quite admirable both in embodying
their faith in action, and in working in the public square to oppose America's
current slide into moral permissiveness and decadence. As Professor Huntington
himself documents, however, neither the Moral Majority in the 1980s, nor the
Christian Coalition in the 1990s, turned out to have either the consistency or
the staying power to oppose effectively today's secular humanist juggernaut
currently in the process of crushing all the laws governing morals that happen to be in its path.
None of this is said in order to criticize or denigrate Protestants or Protestantism as such. Americans generally are implicated in the marked and rapid moral
decline in America in our day a moral decline that probably represents a
greater challenge to American identity than any of the challenges that worry
Professor Huntington. But if the revival of his cherished Anglo-Protestant culture truly is what is necessary to the salvaging of America's threatened identity,
then there would seem to be some need for America's culture to be Protestant
in the traditional sense described by Professor Huntington, namely, as denoting

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48

Kenneth D. Whitehead

what Protestants once believed was right and wrong, appropriate and inappropriate.16 But, in fact, all this has been drastically changed from what it was
in the predominantly Protestant culture that characterized America at its founding.
Today in America, courtesy of the U.S. Supreme Court's Roe v. Wade decision, abortions for any reason or for no reason have been legal since 1973.
Over 40 million Americans have been subtracted from today's American population over the past 35 years by virtue of not being allowed to be born. Today
in America, the same U.S. Supreme Court, in its recent 2003 sodomy decision,
Lawrence v. Texas, legalized not merely sodomy between consenting adults,
but, in effect, any and all sexual acts whatsoever between consenting adults. In
America's original culture, the commandments, Thou shalt not kill and Thou
shalt not commit adultery, among other commandments, had some meaning.
They no longer have as much in America today. In its most recent session ending in June, 2004, the very same Supreme Court was unable to find any way to
protect children from gross obscenity and pornography on the internet because under the court's current understanding of the rule of law, obscenity
and pornography must be allowed as constitutionally protected speech.
In a word, both sexual morality and marital fidelity have now virtually been
legally abolished in America today. This is no exaggeration. Many other indications besides court decisions point to the same kind of precipitous, perhaps irremediable, moral decline. The marriage rate in America, for example, has fallen
by nearly 50 percent since 1960, with approximately 1.5 million divorces now
occurring annually. At the same time, what the U.S. Census Bureau calls unmarried partner households have climbed from 523,000 couples in 1970 to
4,900,000 in 2000, a ninefold increase.17
Now none of this is the fault of Protestants in particular. The acids of modernity have affected all Americans. Indeed, much of the problem can be said
to stem from the decline of Protestantism and of Christianity generally in
America today. A falling off of religious practice verifiably does correspond to
the decline of personal moral behavior. One scholar makes this point unmistakably:
Sociologists predictably see a close linkage between declining church attendance
among young Americans and a rising willingness to engage in premarital sex.
Young women eagerly availed themselves of the Pill in the Sixties and Seventies
largely because they were simultaneously letting go of the New Testament: whereas
only 29% of college age females reported having had premarital intercourse in
1965, that percentage had sky-rocketed to 63% by 1985. In the post-Sixties world,
Ibid., p. 30.
Figures cited by Allan Carlson, Rebuilding a Culture of Marriage, in: The Family in America, December, 2003.
16
17

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Mistaken National Identity: Samuel Huntington's Who Are We?

49

young Americans were clearly taking their behavioral cues from someone other
than St. Paul. By the 1980s . . . millions of heterosexual couples would flout the
religious doctrines forbidding fornication: over two million unmarried heterosexual
couples were living together in 1986, and 44 percent of all American heterosexual
couples who married between 1980 and 1984 had cohabited before taking vows.18

Thus has personal morality evolved in America today. But what is the
point of citing all this evidence of moral decline in a paper dealing with America's national identity? The point is that America's national identity is said by
Professor Samuel Huntington to be in danger from many of the effects of today's globalization, especially from immigrants deemed not easily assimilable
to America's supposed Anglo-Protestant culture. The reality, however, is that
the Anglo-Protestant culture in question (if that is really what it is) is itself in a
steep moral decline characterized by the progressive abandonment by Americans today of the Christian morality which the Founding Fathers of the country,
by Huntington's own testimony, certainly regarded as an essential component
of America's national identity.
IV.
In Who Are We? The Challenge to America's National Identity, Professor
Samuel Huntington says that he would like to see Americans of all races and
ethnicities . . . attempt to reinvigorate their core culture.19 But then, as we have
seen, he insists on defining America's core culture as Anglo-Protestant,
thereby as a practical matter excluding on account of their religion at least
some of the races and ethnicities about which he speaks. He states flatly, for
example, that America is the child of [the] Reformation. Without it there
would be no America as we have known it.20 He probably thinks that he has
explained and defined things so that American Catholics and Jews, or even
American Muslims, will not be put off by his narrow identification of America
with Protestantism. In fact, however, his attitude can only be described as rather
condescending towards the many Americans who might well be disposed to
share his positive commitment to America's core culture, but who might not
want to be obliged thereby to be committed to the Protestant Reformation as
well. As far as he is concerned, however, they will just have to accept his ipse
dixit that America is fundamentally Protestant.
More than that, the American core culture in question is currently in the
throes of a radical secularization and a drastic moral decline, of which we have
18 Bryce Christensen, Why Homosexuals Want What Marriage Has Become, in:
The Family in America, April, 2004.
19 Huntington, Who Are We?, p. 20.
20 Ibid., p. 63.

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50

Kenneth D. Whitehead

noted only a few of the more salient contemporary indications. Ironically, some
of the undesirable immigrants he thinks cannot easily be assimilated might in
fact help check the current moral decline by bringing with them personal moral
standards more consonant with traditional Christian morality. While the divorce
rate among Americans generally today is around fifty per cent, the divorce rate
among the immigrants from Mexico whom he fears is around five per cent.
Throughout his long and detailed work, however, Professor Huntington scarcely
takes any notice at all of the fact that his touted American core culture is in the
midst of a grave moral crisis that surely threatens America's national identity
every bit as much as unrestricted immigration, for example, threatens it. He has
thus not correctly identified the major challenge to America's national identity.
He unaccountably denies, for example, that America has become secularized.21
It must be said that he is concerned about lawlessness, at least in the areas of
civil rights and affirmative action, where he notes that judges and even legislators bend and stretch the law until it comes to mean the opposite of what it
originally meant (e. g., supposedly color blind civil rights legislation is interpreted to favor affirmative action for people of color!).22 But at the same time,
he is entirely oblivious, or at any rate wholly indifferent, to the way civil rights
legislation has been (and is being) interpreted to grant special rights to homosexuals, even though no federal or state legislation anywhere actually includes
sexual orientation as a protected category (this does not, however, prevent
many judges and administrators from treating it as if had been enacted into law
somewhere).
It is true that the current much-publicized drive for so-called same-sex marriage probably did not burst upon the scene until after Professor Huntington's
book was already written. Still, there were earlier indications, in Hawaii and
Vermont, for example, that this so-called same-sex marriage was coming inexorably down the road. Any alert student of American society and culture should
have been aware of these indications, especially someone positing a revival
or reinvigoration of religion in order to reaffirm America's national identity
in the face of the dangers threatening it. Now that America has experienced the
widespread recent lawlessness of witnessing the issuance of marriage licenses to
same-sex couples by mayors, judges, and justices of the peace, not only in contravention of existing law, but often in open defiance of it, we can only speculate about what Samuel Huntington might think about the rule of law as one
of the pillars of Anglo-Protestant culture and the American Creed.
Actually, Professor Huntington rarely mentions homosexuals, and, when he
does, he takes an entirely morally neutral, if not actually favorable, stance to21
22

Ibid., p. 15.
Ibid., pp. 148149.

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Mistaken National Identity: Samuel Huntington's Who Are We?

51

wards them. He does not seem to regard today's massive and aggressive homosexual-rights movement as representing any kind of threat or attack on traditional Christian morality or American culture. His first mention of gay men
and lesbians comes in a quotation from Richard Rorty on leftism in academia.23 On the same page, he refers non-committally to President Clinton's policy on gays in the military. He mentions media bias in reporting crimes
against blacks, gays, and women.24 He includes the category of gay rights
in a list of cultural issues.25 And in one place, he actually refers to people
willing to vote for a homosexual as proof that they are still religious!
In short, then, it seems that he regards the contemporary gay rights movement as legitimate. How he would reconcile this with what he must know the
Founding Fathers would have thought about today's open and flaunted homosexual lifestyles or what the vast majority of Protestants would have
thought about them up until very recently, not to speak of what the Holy Bible
on which Protestants claim to base their religion very clearly says about them
is hard to imagine. If neither traditional Christian morality nor the Bible is to
count in the face of such modern secular humanist imperatives as so-called
gay rights as the current battles over the issue going on within a number of
Protestant denominations suggest that both Christian morality and the Bible
count less and less with more and more Protestants then what is the status of
the Protestantism that Professor Huntington insists must be equated with
American values even today? It certainly does not appear that Protestants
generally are engaged in building any shining city on a hill today.
Mention of homosexuality in the climate of today inevitably raises the question of marriage which homosexuals too are now demanding for themselves.
Long before the organized homosexual-rights movement ever conceived of this
as a goal, however, regular marriage was already falling into an ever deepening
crisis, not only in America but in the Western world as a whole. The current
state of marriage in the West today surely represents a crisis of civilization if
anything does. Yet Professor Huntington discusses marriage only in connection
with dual citizenship,26 and in connection with interethnic and interracial intermarriage.27 Once again the savant who expatiates so confidently on the moral
foundations of America shows himself to be simply oblivious to many aspects
of the real moral state of the American society and culture which he otherwise
describes in such almost excruciating detail.

23
24
25
26
27

Ibid.,
Ibid.,
Ibid.,
Ibid.,
Ibid.,

p. 272.
p. 313.
p. 352.
p. 212.
pp. 296297; and pp. 305306.

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52

Kenneth D. Whitehead

And then there is the scourge of legalized abortion. Professor Huntington


mentions abortion several times casually or in passing as if it were nothing out
of the ordinary. The word does not appear in his Index, any more than marriage or homosexuality are to be found there. He refers to abortion offhand
as one of the things Americans argue about today.28 He mentions it again in
connection with conservative efforts to impose restrictions on it.29 The word
appears again in connection with Southern Baptist opposition to it,30 as well as
in a list of some cultural issues.31 He takes note too of how some Christian
rightist efforts to prohibit abortion . . . [against] centrist opinion . . . came to
naught.32 Pretty clearly, for this author, centrist opinion, not opposition to
abortion, occupies the moral high ground here. He is thus actually dismissive of
those Protestants who are trying to deal with America's real, acute moral crisis.
Nowhere does he reveal the slightest hint that what could aptly be styled America's pagan decision to acquiesce in the regular and steady killing of millions of
her children by abortion might be anything but a perfectly normal and accepted
thing today.
When Professor Huntington finally does touch upon the subject of America's
contemporary moral decline, he is content with a bland and superficial summary a bare list, in fact, with no discussion of a few of the major problems: . . . teen-age pregnancy, single parent families, mounting divorce rates,
high levels of crime, widespread drug use, pornography and violence in the
media, and the perception that a large number of people were living the easy
life on the welfare rolls funded by hardworking taxpayers.33 He actually
speaks of Americans becoming concerned about what they saw as the decline
in values, morality, and standards in American society . . . (emphasis added).34
Thus, according to Professor Huntington, these Americans were concerned only
with what they saw, not with what has actually and undeniably happened to
Christian morality in America today.
It turns out, then, that the famous Harvard professor who champions the idea
that religion often lies at the basis of cultures and civilizations, and who has
even been prepared boldly to declare America to be still a Christian nation,
has a decidedly incomplete and defective idea of what Christianity actually is
and entails for example, what it must have been back in the era when the
American identity was being formed as compared with today! He also has a
28
29
30
31
32
33
34

Ibid.,
Ibid.,
Ibid.,
Ibid.,
Ibid.,
Ibid.,
Ibid.,

p. 9.
p. 79.
p. 345.
p. 352.
p. 343.
pp. 343344.
p. 341.

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Mistaken National Identity: Samuel Huntington's Who Are We?

53

very imperfect and myopic idea of what America has since become, morally
and culturally speaking. His views on these things in the end evidently do not
really differ all that much from those of his secular humanist academic colleagues, in fact, in spite of the controversy that has surrounded his supposedly
racist and other politically incorrect views. He thus never really gets at the
heart of what once made America great, and he certainly has little idea of what
a truly Christian America might have to be like today. If he seriously believes
that Christianity is one of the necessary elements making up the American
character and identity, then perhaps he should have addressed the question of
what might need to be done to revive authentic Christianity in the world today,
not just his favored dissenting-type of Protestantism.
As it is, whatever resources, religious and otherwise, that America may still
have to draw upon in facing the very real problems that beset her which include but are certainly not limited to the problems stemming from today's globalization and unrestricted immigration will have to await another and better
study than this one.
Summary
In his 2004 book Who Are We? Harvard political scientist Samuel Huntington argues that America's national identity is in danger of being lost because of the influx
of immigrants, particularly Hispanic, who are not being assimilated to American society. Huntington believes that the American national identity was formed through the
interaction of the Protestant Christianity of the original settlers with the New World.
He therefore calls for a revival of the American identity through a return to its
sources, but he fails to see that the liberalized and attenuated Protestant Christianity of
today is no longer capable of revitalizing the American identity.

Zusammenfassung
In seinem 2004 erschienenen Buch Wer sind wir? vertritt der Politologe Samuel
Huntington die These, da die nationale Identitt Amerikas verlorenzugehen drohe infolge des Einflusses der Immigranten, insbesondere der Einwanderer aus den spanischsprechenden Lndern, die nicht in die amerikanische Gesellschaft assimiliert werden.
Huntington glaubt, da die nationale Identitt Amerikas entstanden ist durch die wechselseitige Beeinflussung der protestantischen Christen, der ersten Einwanderer, mit der
neuen Welt. Deshalb pldiert er fr die Wiederbelebung der amerikanischen Identitt
durch eine Rckkehr zu ihren Quellen. Aber er sieht nicht, da die liberal und schwcher gewordene protestantische Christenheit von heute gar nicht mehr fhig ist fr
eine Wiederbelebung der amerikanischen Identitt.

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Culture and the Individual:


The Psychological Impact of Globalization
By Gladys Sweeney
I. Introduction
With the advent of information technology and the spread of economic capitalism, globalization has become a phenomenon of increasing importance.
Globalization may be thought of as the widening, deepening and speeding up
of worldwide interconnectedness in all aspects of contemporary social life, from
the cultural to the criminal, the financial to the spiritual.1
Much of the worldwide conversation about globalization focuses on economic progress and development, and rightly so. It is important, however, to
consider globalization's impact on culture and the attendant psychological consequences for the individual.
While economic and technological breakthroughs are the most obvious results of globalization, the psychological effects are equally important in the life
of a nation. Psychological ramifications are not theoretical; they are very real,
and they affect the lives of the men, women, and children who form the families that are the strength or the Achilles's heel of a society. In general,
psychological factors influence whether a person will be balanced or maladjusted, goal-oriented or adrift, fulfilled or marginalized. In extreme cases, psychological dysfunction can render a person incapable of raising a family or
holding a job. These consequences affect not only the present generation but
succeeding generations as well. The teen who becomes alienated from his parents and struggles with identity issues and depression will spend the greater part
of his adolescence turned inward. He focuses on himself, ultimately unable to
1 Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences, Acta 7: Globalization: Ethical and Institutional Concerns, citing D. Held, A. McGrew, D. Goldblatt, and J. Perraton, Global
Transformation, Stanford: Stanford University Press (1993), p. 2; see also Arnett, J. J.,
The Psychology of Globalization, American Psychologist (Oct., 2002), p. 774. Arnett
describes globalization as a process by which cultures influence one another and become more alike through trade, immigration, and the exchange of information and
ideas. He notes that in recent decades, the degree and intensity of the connections
among different cultures and different world regions have accelerated dramatically because of advances in telecommunications and a rapid increase in economic and financial interdependence worldwide.

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56

Gladys Sweeney

give of himself to others because it takes so much effort just to navigate daily
life. The damage does not stop there. His inability to form strong relationships
with his siblings and parents may affect his relationship with his future spouse
and children. The individual's mental health affects the health of his family.
And the family's health, as Pope John Paul II points out, inevitably affects
society's health.2
All the economic opportunity in the world will be useless to a person who is
psychologically dysfunctional and unable to take advantage of that opportunity.
Similarly, an aggregate increase in a nation's standard of living or technological
development will not stand long when it rests on a crumbling foundation, that
is, when individuals, families, and even the culture have lost their cohesiveness,
traditions, and purpose. Thus, psychological consequences are very real to
those individuals who suffer them and to society as well.
Globalization, per se, is not necessarily psychologically harmful to individuals. Indeed, John Paul II states that globalization, a priori, is neither good
nor bad. It will be what people make of it. No system is an end in itself and it
is necessary to insist that globalization, like any other system, must be at the
service of the human person, it must serve solidarity and the common good.3
II. A Critique of Globalization Today
from Pope John Paul II's Perspective
But does the globalization of today meet those criteria? Do the real-life
forces of globalization support and respect an authentic vision of the human
person? Pope John Paul II, not surprisingly, offers a cogent analysis of the problematic aspects of globalization.
The Holy Father, along with many secular psychologists, warns that globalization as practiced today tends to produce a stifling conformity among cultures
and nations. Conformity among cultures is problematic, according to the Pope,
because culture writ large ought to reveal the inexhaustible richness of humanity. On one level, culture is often described as the distinctive body of customs,
beliefs and social institutions that characterize each separate society.4 But it is
2 The health of society depends on the family's health. Pope John Paul II, Message of the Holy Father to the 43 Italian Catholic Social Week, November 10, 1999.
3 John Paul II, Address to the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences, April 27,
2001.
4 Goodell, G. E., Universal Cultural Traits and Anthropology's Contributions to the
Study of Them, The Jacques Maritain Center's Thomistic Institute, July 19, 2000, p. 6.
For another view of culture, see Hermans, H. J. and Kempen, H. J., Moving Cultures:
The Perilous Problems of Cultural Dichotomies in a Globalizing Society, American
Psychologist (Oct., 1998), at p. 1115. Hermans and Kempen note that many commentators defined culture as a package of ideas, values, and practices; as a repertoire of

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Culture and the Individual: Psychological Impact of Globalization

57

also much more. As John Paul II notes, culture provides a clue to both man's
origin and his destiny. It is
[t]he form of man's self-expression in his journey through history, on the level of
both individuals and social groups. For man is driven incessantly by his intellect
and will to cultivate natural goods and values, to incorporate in an ever higher and
more systematic cultural synthesis his basic knowledge of all aspects of life . . . and
to foster those existential values and perspectives, especially in the religious sphere,
which enable individual and community life to develop in a way that is authentically human.5

Culture is a window into the profound nature and possibilities of the human
person; it provides the context for people's lives and bears the stamp of people's choices their hierarchy of values, their underlying basis for security, an
interpretation of the meaning of life, their history, and their future. In a reciprocal way, culture shapes the attitudes, beliefs, and practices of a people. Culture
expresses to the world and to the person himself his understanding of who
he is and who God is.
Immersed in his own culture, the human person discovers a necessary tension
within himself between the universal and the particular. He possesses the same
nature that every human being enjoys and intuitively connects himself to the
larger human family. The eyes of his soul see beyond his doorstep and even his
national borders. At the same time, however, he is born with a certain ethnic
heritage, lives in a specific place, and calls one nation6 home. He has a cultural identity, with all that this implies, namely tradition, customs, rituals, language, and more. Jesus, for example, was not a generic global citizen. He was
born and lived as a Nazarene. John Paul II makes the point that
in most cases a culture develops in a specific place, where geographical, historical,
and ethnic elements combine in an original and unique way. The uniqueness' of
each culture is reflected more or less clearly in those individuals who are its
bearers, in a constant process whereby individuals are influenced by their culture
and then according to their different abilities and genius, contribute to it something
of their own. In any event, a person necessarily lives within a specific culture. People are marked by the culture whose very air they breathe through the family and
social groups around them, through education and the most varied influences of
their environment, through the very relationship which whey have with the place in
schemas; as a system of meanings, symbols, and actions; as a syndrome of beliefs,
norms, attitudes and roles; and as a pattern of self-definitions centered around a
theme. However, Hermans and Kempen believe that such simple definitions of culture fail to capture the complexity of culture in a globalized world. They propose an
additional dimension of culture that includes the ways in which the ideas and modes
of thought and external forms . . . are spread over a population and its social relationships. At p. 1115.
5 John Paul II, Message of His Holiness Pope John Paul II for the Celebration of
the World Day of Peace, January 1, 2001, par. 4.
6 Called nation, from the Latin word nasci, to be born.

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58

Gladys Sweeney

which they live. There is no determinism here, but rather a constant dialectic between the strength of the individual's conditioning and the workings of human freedom.7

Thus this vital tension between universality and particularity8 is present


in every person. Lived in a balanced way, the duality of universality and particularity enriches and broadens both the culture and the individual.
One of the risks of globalization is that this sense of particularity may be
lost. The increasing tendency towards cultural homogeneity obscures the richness of God's creation and shades man's perception of His limitless transcendence. Driven by values of efficiency and production, globalization may easily
obliterate the diverse cultures of smaller nations and produce an artificial homogeneity. While critics find additional fault with globalization for fostering a
smug attitude of Western superiority (from some perspectives, anything native is always preferable)9, the Pope exposes a deeper flaw inherent in artificial homogeneity: it constricts the individual's and the culture's ability to explore the most profound questions of life and to express the answers they find.
For different cultures are but different ways of facing the question of the meaning
of the personal existence. And it is precisely here that we find one source of the
respect which is due to every culture and every nation: every culture is an effort to
ponder the mystery of the world and in particular of the human person: it is a way
of giving expression to the transcendent dimension of human life. The heart of
every culture is its approach to the greatest of all mysteries: the mystery of God.10

This brings us to the Holy Father's major criticism of globalization: it is


awash in the secular materialism of Western culture, bringing with it modernity's soulless vision of the world,11 a world-view that dispenses with God.
[N]o less perilous is the slavish conformity of cultures . . . to cultural models deriving from the Western world. Detached from their Christian origins, these models are
often inspired by . . . secularism and practical atheism and by patterns of radical
individualism. This is a phenomenon of vast proportions, sustained by powerful
John Paul II, World Day of Peace, January 1, 2001, par 5.
John Paul II, Address of His Holiness Pope John Paul II to the Fiftieth General
Assembly of the United Nations Organization, October 5, 1995, par. 7.
9 Thomas, K. R. & Weinrach, S. G., Multiculturalism in Counselling and Applied
Psychology: a Critical Perspective. Educational and Child Psychology (1999), Vol.
16(4). The authors explain that: A devotion to cultural diversity, for its own sake,
has been elevated above a commitment to common sense . . . When counselors, applied psychologists, educators, and other social service professionals, in their enthusiasm for multiculturalism, encourage their clients or students to retain aspects of their
native culture that are no longer adaptive or functional, they may be doing a disservice not only to the people they are intending to help, but also to society generally.
at p. 7677.
10 John Paul II, United Nations, at par. 9.
11 National Catholic Register, June 1319, 2004, p. 4, Media Watch column,
Where is America's Collective Soul?
7
8

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Culture and the Individual: Psychological Impact of Globalization

59

media campaigns and designed to propagate lifestyles, social and economic programs and, in the last analysis, a comprehensive world-view which erodes from
within other estimable cultures and civilizations. Western cultural models are enticing and alluring because of their remarkable scientific and technical cast, but regrettably there is growing evidence of their deepening human, spiritual and moral
impoverishment. The culture which produces such models is marked by the fatal
attempt to secure the good of humanity by eliminating God, the Supreme Good.
Yet, as the Second Vatican Council warned, without the Creator the creature
comes to nothing!' A culture which no longer has a point of reference in God loses
its soul and loses its way, becoming a culture of death.12

Not surprisingly, a culture without God evolves into a culture that fails to
serve the common good; utilitarianism and consumerism (unchecked consumption and materialism) become the standard by which ethical decisions are made.
Globalization (and the companies, individuals, and governments that push it
forward) often serves a utilitarian ethic rather than the common good, demonstrating a commitment only to the inexorable march of progress and wealth
regardless of whether progress respects the dignity of the human person or
upholds authentic standards of morality. However, unlike many sociological
and political commentators, Pope John Paul II never shrinks from confronting
an ethic that purports to rest on anything but the dignity of man, for the human
person is the center of every social order.
Ethical discernment in the context of globalization must be based upon two inseparable principles: (1) The inalienable value of the human person, source of all human rights and every social order. The human being must always be an end and not
a means, a subject and not an object, nor a commodity of trade. (2) The value of
human cultures, which no external power has the right to downplay and still less to
destroy. Globalization must not be a new version of colonialism. It must respect the
diversity of cultures which, within the universal harmony of peoples, are life's interpretive keys. In particular, it must not deprive the poor of what remains most precious to them, including their religious beliefs and practices, since genuine religious
convictions are the clearest manifestations of human freedom.13

The potential then for globalization to do good or to inflict harm depends on


whether it respects the human person and his religious convictions, his dignity
and freedom, and the God-given diversity of nations and cultures. Moreover,
when globalization imposes excessive uniformity it undermines those values,
with profound implications in the area of identity. As John Paul II observed,
[P]recisely against a horizon of universality we see the powerful resurgence of a
certain ethnic and cultural consciousness, as it were an explosive need for identity
and survival, as sort of counterweight to the tendency toward uniformity.14

12
13
14

John Paul II, World Day of Peace, January 1, 2001, at par. 9.


John Paul II, Social Sciences Address, April 27, 2001, at par. 4.
John Paul II, United Nations, October 5, 1995, at par. 7.

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III. Globalization's Impact on Identity


The Holy Father pinpoints a singularly important consequence of globalization: it affects identity. Here is where psychology proves especially helpful:
psychology explains the significance of cultural identity and the complex process of identity formation, particularly in adolescence. Moreover, it provides
insight into globalization's effect on cultural identity and identity formation, as
well as the resulting strength of the culture and its people. These concepts and
connections are crucial if we hope to apprehend the full significance of John
Paul II's critique of globalization. While science and theology are different
ways of seeking the truth, there can never be a true divergence between faith
and reason, since the same God who reveals the mysteries and bestows the gift
of faith has also placed in the human spirit the light of reason. This God could
not deny himself, nor could the truth ever contradict the truth.15 In Fides et
Ratio, John Paul II urges scientists to pursue their professions without ever
abandoning the sapiential horizon within which scientific and technological
achievements are wedded to the philosophical and ethical values which are the
distinctive and indelible mark of the human person. Scientists are well aware
that the search for truth', even when it concerns a finite reality of the world or
of man, is never ending, but always points beyond to something higher than the
immediate object of study, to the questions which give access to mystery.16
Coming from this premise of the universality of truth, I will take a preliminary look at the concept of cultural identity and globalization's effect on it. From
there, we will consider personal identity formation, especially in adolescence.
Cultural identity is the discovery of a psychological home, a sense of belonging to an ethnic or geographic community with consistent socialization
themes and traditions . . . The cultural home provides a set of integrated assumptions, values, beliefs, social role norms, and emotional attachments that constitutes a meaningful personal identity, developed and located within a sociocultural framework and [that] is shared by a group of similarly located individuals.17
Cultural identity is not a fixed place, but rather a sense of community, built
on shared values, traditions, and assumptions about life that form a common
frame of reference. It is an expression to the world and to oneself of who you
are and what it means to be a person.18

Fides et Ratio, September 14, 1998, at par. 53.


Fides et Ratio, par. 106, quoting from an address by the Holy Father at the University of Krokow, June 8, 1997.
17 Vivero, V. N., & Jenkins, S. R., Existential Hazards of the Multicultural Individual: Defining and Understanding Cultural Homelessness, Cultural Diversity and
Ethnic Minority Psychology, February 1999, vol. 5, no. 1, p. 626.
15
16

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Culture and the Individual: Psychological Impact of Globalization

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What happens, then, when globalization prompts a sustained contact between


two different cultures especially when the dominant culture represents a view
of man radically different from that of the native culture?
Psychology offers us a framework for describing the results of this contact
and its effect on cultural identity. The process is called acculturation, which
occurs when groups of individuals having different cultures come into continuous first-hand contact with subsequent changes in the original culture pattern of
either or both groups.19 Psychologists observe four typical patterns of acculturation,20 and note that while acculturation is not always bad,21 it usually produces acculturative stress. Psychologist John Berry refers to acculturative
stress as the experienced conflict between one's original culture and a new
culture.22 Arnett and Jensen state that globalization could be said to result in
such conflict when the norms and practices of the local culture are incompatible
with the norms and practices introduced by the global culture.23 It has been
debated whether acculturation is always accompanied by acculturative stress.
Berry himself notes that early views were that culture contact and change inevitably led to stress; however, current views are that stress is linked to acculturation in a probabilistic way, and the level of stress experienced will depend
on a number of factors.24 Berry goes on to summarize the likely results of
acculturative stress: At the personal level, reduced health (physical, social and
psychological), lowered levels of motivation, a sense of alienation, and increased social deviance have been documented. At the societal level there are
direct counterparts in increased health costs, lower educational and work attainment (with related higher welfare costs), increased social conflict . . . substance
abuse, criminal activity, and a general societal malaise.25
18 In Catholic terms, cultural identity reflects the person's natural desire to live in
community, to share life with others whom they love, to find meaning in personal
relationships and the context that frames those relationships. Think of Genesis 2:20
23. Adam named the animals but was still alone without a person fit for him. God
then created Eve and brought her to Adam. Adam's reply, This at last is bone of my
bones and flesh of my flesh, Gen 2:23, offers a poetic glimpse of cultural identity,
illuminating the psychological importance of living in community with those who are
most like ourselves. Indeed man seeks to create community in psychological terms,
to find his cultural home and cultural identity.
19 Berry, J. W., Immigration, Acculturation, and Adaptation, Applied Psychology,
vol. 46, no. 1 (1997), p. 534, at p. 7.
20 Berry, Immigration, at p. 9.
21 In fact, in many circumstances it is quite good, enhancing the experience of both
the individual and his community. See Berry, Immigration, at p. 7.
22 Berry, Immigration, at p. 13.
23 Arnett, J. J., The Psychology of Globalization, American Psychologist, vol. 57,
no. 10 (October, 2002), p. 774783, at p. 779.
24 Berry, J. W., Acculturative Stress, in P. B. Organista, K. M. Chun & G. Marin
(Eds.), Readings in Ethnic Psychology, N.Y.: Routledge (1998), at 120.
25 Ibid., p. 122.

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I would like to illustrate this process by using of a fictional character. A man


let's call him Jos lives in a developing country that has welcomed the
agents of globalization into its cities and towns. Little by little, the globalized
culture permeates Jos's town. New factories run by Americans offer English
classes to their employees. Workers earn bonuses when they meet production
quotas a goal possible only if the employee forgoes his customary lunch and
siesta at home. Some businesses in town begin to stay open on Sundays, raising
the pastor's ire as church attendance begins to dwindle. Internet service becomes available and the stores are being stocked with American CD's, TV's,
and computers available for a price that the newly employed can now afford.
Clothing stores begin to offer Western clothing, especially for women, shocking the sensibilities of the older residents. And children's play, punctuated with
slang, begins to reflect the storylines of American action movies and sitcoms.
Over time perhaps even a short time exposure to the globalized culture
will change Jos. He will not be the same man that he was before. As he sorts
out his cultural identity, his behaviors and attitudes will fall into one of four
categories of acculturation, each with different stress levels and problems. His
children will experience the same process, although it will be complicated by
their need to define their own independent identity during adolescence.
Let's look at the possible scenarios for Jos. If he refuses to learn English,
shuns the Americanized workers who begin to cluster together at work and
afterwards, forbids his children to watch American TV or connect to international websites, and insists that the family maintain its commitment to traditional customs, language, dress, and religious rituals in short, if he succeeds
in avoiding most contacts with the globalized culture that is shaping his village
psychologists would describe him as separationist. The separationist approach
engenders stress and psychological conflict for Jos as he strains to live in a
culture that is changing around him and which he adamantly refuses to accept. He looks for others who feel the same way, perhaps resulting in a smaller,
more closed circle of friends.26 His family may or may not follow his lead,
raising the likelihood of parent-child conflict and marital strain.
A second approach to the new culture is the assimilation paradigm. If Jos
eagerly learns English, works extra hours in the pursuit of more income, and
26 Separationist tendencies may take the form of religiously based self-selected
culture. Arnett cites the example of newly Orthodox Jewish women' . . . who grew
up in secular Jewish homes in the United States but as they arrived at womanhood
they concluded that the secular values they were raised with provided an inadequate
foundation for living. The women converted to Orthodox Judaism which, despite its
restrictive teachings towards women, was appealing because it offered them the
structure of a definite place in the world, the meaning conferred by Orthodox Jewish
theology, and the roots of a long, durable tradition. Arnett, J. J., Psychology, at p.
780.

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Culture and the Individual: Psychological Impact of Globalization

63

strives to absorb the nuances of his foreign employer's corporate atmosphere,


he will be making progress towards assimilating the global culture. As he habitually logs on to the Internet and his children watch MTV, his family's use of
leisure time will reflect new pastimes rather than the traditional ones. Jos will
become more familiar with the Western customs and values beamed daily into
his home and will associate with fellow townspeople who will exchange knowledge of American entertainment, discuss world news and embrace the globalized culture. He may jettison old friends in favor of those who share his pursuit of all things Western. Over time he may find himself shedding his old traditions, language, and perhaps even faith, in order to fit in with his more
contemporary peers or to appear modern.
Consequently, this assimilation approach causes psychological stress for Jos
as well. Typically it engenders conflicts within the family over the maintenance
of traditions, old friends, and deeply held beliefs. Jos's relationships with more
traditional institutions in his community (such as the church, schools, and local
cultural groups) will become more attenuated as the perceived distance between
them grows. He may lack support from them in the future. He may experience
inner conflict and turmoil from the decision to reject the heritage that formed
the backdrop of his own childhood. His stress and inner conflicts may render
him less available to his wife and children as well. At the same time, they may
need him more as they struggle to understand his push to assimilate a goal
that only some of them embrace. For other family members, the prospect of
assimilation generates fear and confusion. Division characterizes family relationships. Jos's parents, in particular, interpret their son's drive to assimilate
as a rejection of their lives a judgment that the old ways are inferior or
backward.
An additional problem with assimilation arises when globalization exists according to an utilitarian27 ethic: the human person becomes subject to exploitation. For example, if a company's relentless pursuit of profits drives its managers to require longer workdays (even on Sundays), inexperienced employees
may feel pressured to accept these hours. Fearful that to refuse the hours would
jeopardize his job, Jos works long hours and participates less and less in family and community life. Jos discovers that he is no longer valued for himself, but as a means to an end a useful or profitable end. Psychologically, the
person internalizes this message in his willingness to assimilate. He experiences
a devaluation of his existence as he risks feeling trampled by the faceless globalized mechanisms and increasingly loses his identity and dignity as a person.28 The psychological consequences may include loss of self-esteem, the
27 The Pope describes utilitarianism as the doctrine which defines morality not in
terms of what is good but of what is advantageous. John Paul II, United Nations
(1995), at par. 13.

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Gladys Sweeney

fragmentation of family as work dominates home life, the coarsening of the


conscience as immoral means become acceptable in pursuit of a good end, and
a deepening psychology of insecurity as Jos loses a sense of his own worth
and dignity. Overtime he may adopt this mentality as well and begin to see
others in utilitarian terms, starting with his own family.
If Jos does not choose assimilation, a third alternative for him is the integration approach, striving to maintain the cultural traditions and values of his
homeland, all the while interacting as much as possible through work, education, and community involvement with the dominant global culture that now
surrounds him. Jos retains strong connections with his church and local community and widens his circle of friends to include newcomers who are invited
to share in local celebrations and family rituals. His commitments to the underlying values of his culture are clear and strong. He continues to pass on these
beliefs and values to his children, with the clear expectation that they will adopt
them as well. At the same time, he pursues the education and opportunities
afforded him by the global influence.
Psychologists agree that integration is the healthiest psychological approach
to acculturation. What is implicit in this option, is the maintenance of the cultural integrity of the larger group as well as the movement by the individual to
become an integral part of a larger societal framework. An integrationist approach will allow him to retain the cultural identity that informs his own personal identity. At the same time, this commitment to maintain familiar traditions
and relationships allows him the inner freedom to branch out from those traditions and relationships. He will expand his circle of friends without feeling the
need to reject the old in order to embrace the new. He may choose to adapt
some of his behaviors in response to the surrounding culture, but without the
psychological stress of abandoning his roots. His family more easily adapts to
the global culture neither shunning it nor being absorbed by it.29
Integration works for the individual not just because of his inner attitude but
because of external circumstances as well. The dominant culture riding the
wave of globalization deftly balances respect for the person's cultural traditions
while unfolding the benefits of modernity. For example, an employer might
demonstrate flexibility, accommodating work schedules to include time for im28 John Paul II, Address to the 6th Public Session of the Pontifical Academy of
Theology and St. Thomas Aquinas, November 8, 2001.
29 According to Berry, The integration option . . . implies the maintenance of the
cultural integrity of the larger group, as well as the movement by the group to become an integral part of a larger societal framework. Berry, Acculturative Stress, at
p. 118. It also seems to be the most effective strategy if we take long-term health
and well-being as indicators. See Berry, Immigration, at p. 2, which discusses research in India and the Third World affirming the positive outcomes from the integrationist approach.

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Culture and the Individual: Psychological Impact of Globalization

65

portant cultural traditions (such as a mid-day family meal or local holidays).


The teachers and medical professionals that arrive to provide support services
for company personnel exhibit knowledge and respect for local religious norms
and traditions. The individual feels free to retain his values and meaningful
traditions without fear of ostracization or judgment. The climate of openness
and acceptance encourages him to engage the new culture, to learn from it, and
to evaluate it on his terms. While no acculturation effort is ever free from
stress, the integration approach yields the least stress and the fewest mental
health problems.
In contrast to the healthy psychology that accompanies integration, the fourth
mode of acculturation marginalization is associated with the highest incidence of psychological dysfunction. In this model, the person neither seeks to
maintain his original culture, nor aims to interact with the dominant culture, he
will become a man without a psychological home. Marginalized in both cultures, he may experience social isolation, stress, depression, and psychological
dysfunction. Emotionally empty, he may have nothing to pass on to the next
generation with the consequences that this may entail. The potential for division, loneliness, and vulnerability for the entire family becomes great, leading
to a significant isolation.
This acculturation framework, while not complete,30 offers insights into the
degree of psychological stress generated by globalization and helps evaluate the
effect of globalization on cultural identity. Globalization, however, affects more
than cultural identity; it also exerts a powerful influence on the personality development of adolescents.
IV. Adolescent Individual Identity
Adolescents, like adults, must sort out issues of cultural identity. However,
they face the additional challenge of finding their cultural identity while still
wrestling with issues of personal identity. One of the chief psychological goals
of adolescence, and a pre-requisite to healthy adulthood, is to understand and
accept one's own identity. While a person seeking cultural identity begins to
feel at home by finding others like himself, the youth seeking to understand his
30 The acculturation framework fails to acknowledge that assimilation is not all bad
or even unexpected. It depends on what is being assimilated. Culture shedding may be
desirable when the home culture violates the truth about the human person, through
its laws or behavioral practices. As the Pope's criteria (mentioned earlier) make clear,
a culture that fails to respect human dignity, to seek the common good, or to acknowledge God as Creator is less authentically human than a culture that fulfills these criteria. Leaving that culture behind (for example, when a person converts and assimilates into a Christian culture) will bring internal peace and coherence, even if it also
produces the pain of family or social rejection.

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Gladys Sweeney

own personal identity searches for what distinguishes him from others who
share the same cultural identity.31 He longs to find what makes him unique,
worthy of love, and that which about him is irreducible. These are the kinds of
basic questions the adolescent tackles as he embarks on the complex process of
forming his individual identity.
In an effort, then, to deepen our understanding of globalization's impact on
the individual, let us look closely at the concept of personal identity. Erik Erikson, a renowned psychologist and the foremost authority on identity formation,
states that the personal growth required in this process occurs through a series
of conflicts, inner and outer, which the vital personality weathers, reemerging
from each crisis with an increased sense of inner unity, with an increase of
good judgment, and an increase in the capacity to do well' according to his
own standards and to the standards of those who are significant to him.32
Erikson highlights the importance of adults in a child's personality development. While an adolescent's identity (and consequent mental health) depends to
some extent on personal variables, it is intimately tied to relationships with
adults who afford emotional support and protection: attachment figures, as
they are called.33 This attachment relationship is built on trust.34 For not only
young children, but human being of all ages are found to be at their happiest
and to be able to deploy their talents to best advantage when they are confident
that, standing behind them, there are one or more trusted (italics added) persons
who will come to their aid should difficulties arise.35 Bowlby provides evidence for the continued importance of child-parent attachment during the period from preadolescence to early adulthood, claiming that an unthinking confidence in the unfailing accessibility and support of attachment figures is the bedrock on which stable and self-reliant personalities are built.36 As Erikson
notes, the healthy child, given a reasonable amount of proper guidance, can be
trusted to obey inner laws of development, laws which create a succession of
potentialities for significant interaction with those persons who tend and re31 Jensen, L. A., Coming of Age in a Multicultural World: Globalization and Adolescent Cultural Identity Formation, Applied Developmental Science, vol. 7, No. 3
(2003), at p. 190.
32 Erikson, E. H., Identity: Youth and Crisis, N.Y.: W. W. Norton & Co. (1968), at
p. 92.
33 Bretherton, I., Munholland, K., Internal Working Models in Attachment Relationships. In Handbook of Attachment, edited by Jude Cassidy and Phillip Shaver, N.Y.:
The Guilford Press, 1999 (p. 89).
34 Beyond infancy, attachment relations come to be governed by internal (or mental) working models that young individuals construct from the experienced interaction
patterns with their principal attachment figures. Bowlby, J., Attachment and Loss,
vol. 2 Separation; N.Y. Basic Books, 1973, p. 359.
35 Ibid., at p. 359.
36 Ibid., at p. 322.

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Culture and the Individual: Psychological Impact of Globalization

67

spond to him and those institutions which are ready for him. While such interaction varies from culture to culture, it must remain within the proper rate and
the proper sequence' which governs it.37 The adolescent needs to interact
with a widening radius of significant individuals and institutions,38 in a climate of trust, dialogue and openness.
It is in the context of these trusting relationships that the process of identity
formation begins. Erikson proposes a specific three-stage model to describe the
growth process for adolescent identity. The adolescent's first step in the identity
process is called introjection or incorporation. In this stage, the adolescent's
relationships with the significant adults in his life prompt him to introject or
incorporate some of their qualities into his personality. Introjection requires mutuality between the mother (or mothering adult) and child. Erikson believes that
only the experience of such initial mutuality provides a safe pole of self-feeling from which the child can reach out for the other pole his first love object.39 In the second stage, called identification, the adolescent consciously
begins to identify himself with those introjected models and their qualities.
Identification's success depends on the child's interaction with trustworthy
models, especially family members. In the third stage, identity formation, the
adolescent eventually adopts or rejects certain aspects of his models' identities
and creates his own identity. This unique identity is the result of his interaction
with those models as well as other societal factors.
An adolescent has achieved a stable identity and a degree of maturity when
he actively masters his environment, shows a certain unity of personality, and
is able to perceive the world and himself correctly.40 When the attachment
relationships are inadequate (for example, because of distance, hostility, or a
rupture in the parent-child relationship), identity formation may be impaired,
leaving permanent psychological scars. Thus, the formation of identity is both
complex and dynamic, and it reflects the influence of societal factors. In the
globalization context, these factors certainly include family relationships but
also the acculturation strategy employed, the extent to which pluralism is reflected in the local culture, the degree of distance between the local culture and
the global influences, peer influence, and the presence of support systems for
the developing adolescent. Berry's four acculturation strategies are themselves
heavily influenced by how successful the individual has been in achieving individual identity.
Erikson, Identity, at p. 93.
Ibid.
39 Bretherton, I., Munholland, K., ibid., at p. 89.
40 Jahoda, M., Toward a Social Psychology of Mental Health, Symposium on the
Healthy Personality, Supplement II: Problems of Infancy and Childhood, Transactions
of Fourth Conference, March 1950, M. J. E. Benn (Ed.), N.Y.: Joaish Macy, Jr., Foundation, 1950, quoted in Erikson, Identity, at p. 92 (emphasis in the original).
37
38

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The adolescent's ability to navigate the channels of cultural identity will be


heightened or compromised depending on his success at achieving a strong personal identity. On the other hand, his ability to form his personal identity will
be affected by the culture and thus by globalization itself.
V. Problems in Adolescents Identity Formation
Globalization adds further stresses to the inevitable struggles all adolescents
face, especially with his parents, his peers, and himself as he strives to create
his own identity. When an adolescent's cultural identity is built on the shifting
sands of globalization, his efforts to develop a secure personal identity has the
potential of becoming tenuous and fraught with conflict and confusion. As the
culture changes, his role models change, and his identification with those models can become blurred to the point that cultural identity and personal identity
become not only malleable but also misshapen. Further, globalization seems
ready-made to instigate conflicts between child and family,41 possibly to the
point of disrupting those attachment relationships. Pressure points arise when
the child seeks to identify with his peers in the dominant, secular culture while
the family insists on maintaining its cultural-religious traditions. The child
may have to face the dilemma of choosing between peer rejection for being
different and his or her family's anger and rejection for attempting to assimilate
to the dominant culture to be accepted by his or her peers.42
If a child exposed to the global culture routinely gets the message that his
culture of origin is worthless or that he must reject it in order to be accepted by
the larger culture, he will suffer psychological conflict.43 The extent of the conflict will vary according to several factors: (1) the acculturation pattern being
followed by his family; (2) the nearness of fit between the new culture and
the adolescent's own personality and beliefs; (3) the distance between the
culture of origin and the global culture, including whether the underlying
values in each culture are in conflict.44
Let me illustrate this with an example. Remember Jos, our fictional character? Let's picture the potential issues for his son, Diego, who is fourteen. Diego
is fascinated by American entertainment, Western dress, and can't wait to logon
to the Internet. If his parents have chosen the separationist approach rejecting
41 This phenomenon is also known as dissonant acculturation . . . when exposure to
a new culture leads to more rapid change among adolescents than among adults. Jensen, Coming of Age in a Multicultural World: Globalization and Adolescent Cultural
Identity Formation, at p. 191.
42 Vivero & Jenkins, Cultural Homelessness, p. 626.
43 Berry, Acculturative Stress, at 121.
44 Arnett, Psychology of Globalization, at p. 778779, citing Berry.

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Culture and the Individual: Psychological Impact of Globalization

69

the global culture embraced by Diego's peers Diego will have a choice to
make. He may resort to immersing himself in the forbidden culture secretly,
cultivating new friendships with boys whose parents allow greater access to
global influences. Moreover, he may strive to become like them in order to win
peer approval and to imitate these chosen models. However, if he embraces
values antithetical to his firmly-held beliefs, he will have betrayed himself, his
integrity and his family. He may also reap the consequences of abandoning
those beliefs. (For example, the family's religious prohibition against premarital
sex prevents the teen from enduring the consequences pregnancy and STD's
of his behavior. If he violates those tenets he risks consequences he would
otherwise avoid.) His jump to assimilate creates distance between himself and
his family and the traditional societal institutions (such as the church, school,
or extended family). Those bonds all become weaker, threatening the strength
of his identity.
Alternatively, if Diego rejects the modern values in favor of traditional
ones, his peer relationships will suffer. He may be rejected and friendless. His
sense of self-worth may suffer as he internalizes the message from the global
culture that his home culture is inadequate or backwards. If he perceives a
negative view of his native traditions and culture, he may feel rejected. The
role models in his life and family members with whom he identified may be
criticized or rejected by the global culture as well. He struggles as he shifts
between competing views about his worth and dignity views reinforced by
the contradictory cultures he traverses daily. His relationships with his parents,45 peers, or both will suffer. In the worst-case scenario, he may become
marginalized.
Some researchers describe this phenomenon as cultural homelessness,
where identity is not lacking but is characterized by a feeling of not belonging or being different. The implications are worrisome to psychologists.
[T]he children may find it necessary to adapt to a series of different cultures, and
perhaps nations, during their formative years and they may be required to learn new
communication styles and methods to do so. Cultures may differ dramatically in
their constructs of the self and the interdependence of selves in relationships, and
these constructs have a strong impact on subjective experience . . . What happens
when a child has grown up learning divergent and contradictory constructs of the
self and others, especially if these change unpredictably . . .?46

45 It may degenerate into alienation between son and parents, a breakdown in intergenerational solidarity, a value emphasized by the Holy Father. John Paul II, Address
of John Paul II to the Pontifical Academy for Social Sciences. April 11, 2002, at
par. 3.
46 Vivero & Jenkins, Cultural Homelessness.

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John Paul II echoes this concern. He notes that:


The need to accept one's own culture as a structuring element of one's personality,
especially in the initial stages of life, is a fact of universal experience whose importance can hardly be overestimated. Without a firm rooting in a specific soil', individuals risk being subjected at a still vulnerable age to an excess of conflicting
stimuli which could impair their serene and balanced development.47

The implications of this psychological stress are more significant that one
might expect. For example, the adolescent who is struggling with identity issues may experience anxiety about his future, depression caused by loneliness
and a sense of rejection, anger and inner turmoil from the conflicts with his
parents or extended family, and self-absorption as his psychological struggles
become overwhelming. Unsure of his own identity, he is less able to give and
receive love, to be attentive and giving to others. These patterns may become
ingrained, inhibiting his future ability to have healthy, giving relationships, for
when an adolescent has impaired perceptions of, and emotional ties to his parents, he in turn may have impaired relationships with a future spouse and children.
Furthermore, if life seems meaningless because he no longer finds satisfaction in the traditions and pastimes of his original culture, the adolescent may
struggle with boredom and cynicism. He may be out-of-sync with his peer
group, and his negative feelings may be acted out in anti-social or self-destructive behavior. Arnett cites numerous studies supporting the view that identity
issues compounded by acculturative stress leads adolescents into negative behavior. [G]lobalization increases the proportion of young people in non-Western
cultures who experience a state of identity confusion rather than successfully
forming an identity . . . For some young people . . . delocalization may result in
an acute sense of alienation and impermanence as they grow up with a lack of
cultural certainty, lack of clear guidelines for how life is to be lived and how to
interpret their experience.48 Arnett goes on to cite a study on Ivory Coast
youth that showed increases in suicide, drug abuse, armed aggression, and
male and female prostitution, which were interpreted as evidence of the conflict young people were experiencing between the values of their traditional
cultures and the values of the West.49 Likewise, Jensen cites research on the
Inuit youth of Canada who, as they were sent to school and absorbed global
values through media exposure, exhibited boredom and alienation . . . [these
were] among the factors contributing to adolescent risk behavior, such as shoplifting and alcohol use, in contemporary Inuit society.50
John Paul II, World Day of Peace, January 1, 2001, at par. 6.
Arnett, L., Psychology of Globalization, at p. 778779.
49 Ibid., at p. 779.
50 Jensen, Coming of Age in a Multicultural World: Globalization and Adolescent
Cultural Identity Formation, at p. 194.
47
48

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Culture and the Individual: Psychological Impact of Globalization

71

Identity issues are tremendously important. Identity formation in the adolescent is a crucial developmental phase with consequences that extend far beyond
the teen years and that affect those with whom one comes in contact. This is a
process extremely vulnerable to the disruptions and dilemmas of globalization.
The pressing question is how to manage the increasing pressures of globalization in a way that respects the human person and his needs not only physical,
but also psychological.
VI. Towards a New Culture in a Globalized World
The Holy Father provides us with a vision of a new culture in a globalized
world. With moral clarity, he paints the picture of a modern world united in its
recognition of the truth of the human person, yet diverse in culture and tradition
arising from dialogue and mutual respect. Interestingly, the Pope's approach
mirrors what psychology has shown is the healthiest form of acculturation: integration. Psychology and theological truth fuse well in this area of globalization
and the individual.
The Holy Father's first emphasis is on community and the common good. In
light of globalization, we must realize that we are a community of men and
women, called by God, Creator and Father, to form a single family51 in which
the rights and responsibilities of all are recognized, based on the common and
fundamental dignity of the human person.52 With a shared nature and dignity,
the human family must work towards the common good,53 like any other family. An atmosphere of mutual respect would prevent any exploitation of the
weakest members.
The idea of family' immediately evokes something more than simple functional
relations or a mere convergence of interests. The family is by nature a community
based on mutual trust, mutual support and sincere respect. In an authentic family
51 In a separate address, the Pope notes that emphasizing common human heritage
does not abolish patriotism and that patriotism itself must be distinguished from an
unhealthy nationalism. [W]e need to clarify the essential difference between an unhealthy form of nationalism, which teaches contempt for other nations and cultures,
and patriotism, which is a proper love of one's country. True patriotism never seeks
to advance the well being of one's own nation at the expense of others. For in the end
this would harm one's own nation as well: doing wrong damages both aggressor and
victim. Nationalism, particularly in its most radical forms, is thus the antithesis of true
patriotism . . . [this]holds true . . . in cases where religion itself is made the basis of
nationalism . . . so-called fundamentalism' (5, 11).
52 John Paul II, Pontifical Academies address, November 8, 2001, par. 2. He uses
similar language on earlier occasions, for example his encouragement for the United
Nations to develop a shared awareness of being . . . a family of nations, United
Nations Address, October 5, 1995, at par. 14.
53 John Paul II, Pontifical Academies address, April 27, 2001, at par. 3:
[G]lobalization . . . must serve solidarity and the common good.

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Gladys Sweeney

the strong do not dominate; instead the weaker members, because of their very
weakness, are all the more welcomed and served.54

Similarly, on the psychological level, the person who takes the integration
approach to a more dominant culture begins with confidence in his own identity coupled with an attitude of openness and respect towards others. He resists
the idea that the newcomer is either an enemy he must flee or a dominator
whom he must slavishly imitate. Integration strikes the right balance between
fear and worship, namely respect.
VII. The Human Person and Objective Truth
Since each family member of globalization (i. e., nation) represents a different history, belief system, and cultural tradition, it is only possible to find
common ground by finding unity in a common understanding of the human
person.55 This is the second part of the Pope's vision. He insists that the truth
of the human person is our common ground, and further that the truth of the
human person implies objective moral truths that must be honored. Only when
this is recognized will authentic dialogue take place.
[T]here are indeed universal human rights, rooted in the nature of the person,
rights which reflect the objective and inviolable demands of a universal moral law
. . . [T]here is a moral logic which is built into human life and which makes possible
dialogue between individuals and peoples . . . The universal moral law written on
the human heart is precisely that kind of grammar' which is needed if the world is
to engage this discussion of its future . . . [I]t is a matter of serious concern that
some people today deny the universality of human rights, just as they deny that
there is a human nature shared by everyone. To be sure there is no single model for
organizing the politics and economics of human freedom . . . but it is one things to
affirm a legitimate pluralism of forms of freedom,' and another to deny any universality or intelligibility to the nature of man or of human experience.56

Insisting on objective truth and on the intelligible nature of the human person, says the Pope, is not just a matter of personal integrity; it serves society.
Thus it is important that Christians be helped to show that the defense of uni54 John Paul II, United Nations, October 5, 1995, at par. 14; The Holy Father also
urges the United Nations to promote values, attitudes, and concrete initiatives of solidarity . . . capable of raising the level of relations between nations . . . from simple
existence with' others to existence for' others, in a fruitful exchange of gifts, primarily for the good of weaker nations but . . . a clear harbinger of greater good for everyone. Ibid., at par. 14.
55 It has been done before, on a smaller but significant scale. The Pope reminds us
of the successful overthrow of Communism in 1989, an effort based on [T]he vision
of man as a creature of intelligence and free will, immersed in a mystery which transcends his own being and endowed with the ability to reflect and the ability to choose
and thus capable of wisdom and virtue. Ibid., at par. 4.
56 Ibid., at par. 3.

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Culture and the Individual: Psychological Impact of Globalization

73

versal and unchanging moral norms is a service rendered not only to individuals
but also to society as a whole. Such norms represent the unshakeable foundation and solid guarantee of a just and peaceful human coexistence, and hence
genuine democracy.57
Further, commitment to authentic truth actually safeguards freedom. In the
globalization context, the truth about the human person serves to constrain materialism and utilitarianism, preventing the arrogance that leads to exploitation.
Detached from the truth about the human person, freedom deteriorates into license
in the lives of individuals, and, in political life, it becomes the caprice or the most
powerful and the arrogance of power. Far from being a limitation upon freedom or
a threat to it, reference to the truth about the human person a truth universally
knowable through the moral law written on the hearts of all is in fact, the guarantor of freedom's future.58

The psychological parallel here is striking. Recall that the integration model
succeeds in the globalization context because the individual insists on maintaining his core values; his integrity and fundamental identity remain intact. His
commitment to these fundamental values gives rise to an internal peace about
who he is and gives him the freedom to engage the culture on other levels. He
can even embrace aspects of the globalized culture as long as those fundamental values most related to his identity are respected. In addition, his serenity in
the face of pressure serves not just his own integrity but reinforces the community as well, encouraging others to not abandon their most fundamental beliefs
and values. In effect, his action becomes a catalyst for the global culture to
respect the cultural identity of his people.
When cultures begin with mutual respect and find common ground in the
truth and dignity of the human person, it opens the door to productive dialogue.59 Dialogue, then, is the third component in the Pope's vision of a globalization that works.
Individuals come to maturity through receptive openness to others and through
generous self-giving to them; so too do cultures. Created by people and at the service of people, they have to be perfected through dialogue and communion, on the
57 Veritatis Splendor 96, quoted by John Paul II to participants of the 6th Plenary
Session of the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences.
58 John Paul II, United Nations, October 5, 1995, at par. 12.
59 The truth about man is the unchangeable standard by which all cultures are
judged; but every culture has something to teach us about one or other dimension of
that complex truth. Thus the difference' which some find so threatening can, through
respectful dialogue, become the source of a deeper understanding of the mystery of
human existence. John Paul II, United Nations, October 5, 1995, at par. 10. The
Pope notes elsewhere, Much depends on whether people can embrace a spirit of
openness that, without yielding to indifferentism about values, can combine the concern for identity with the willingness to engage in dialogue. John Paul II, World Day
of Peace, January 1, 2001, at par. 14.

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Gladys Sweeney

basis of the original and fundamental unity of the human family as it came from
the hands of God who made from one stock every nation of mankind.' In this perspective, dialogue between cultures . . . emerges as an intrinsic demand of human
nature itself, as well as of culture. It is dialogue which protects the distinctiveness
of cultures as historical and creative expressions of the underlying unity of the human family, and which sustains understanding and communion between them. The
notion of communion, which has its source in Christian revelation and finds its sublime prototype in the Triune God, never implies a dull uniformity or enforced
homogenization or assimilation; rather . . . [it is] a sign of richness and promise of
growth.60

In the final analysis, dialogue61 is what will both preserve the diversity of
culture and move the world community towards its future. Similarly, the individual sure in his identity and insistent on retaining his core values who
comes face-to-face with the global culture and dialogues with it, is the one who
benefits the most psychologically. I should also mention the importance of the
various mediating structures or authoritative communities, namely institutions
such as the Church, schools, and universities in guiding the individual in the
discernment necessary to retain the good introduced by globalization and to
reject the harmful.
I began this paper with the premise that globalization intrinsically is neither
good nor bad. As conducted in today's world, globalization is problematic, for
both individuals and cultures. The Holy Father, however, offers a vision for
successful globalization, one that comports with both the scientific knowledge
of psychology and the theological truth of the human person:
A sound globalization, carried out in respect for the values of different nations and
ethnic groupings, can contribute significantly to the unity of the human family and
enable forms of cooperation which are not only economic but also social and cultural. Globalization must become more than simply another name for the absolute
relativization of values and the homogenization of life-styles and cultures. For this
to happen, Christian leaders, also in the commercial sphere, are challenged to bear
witness to the liberating and transforming power of Christian truth, which inspires
us to place all our talents, our intellectual resources, our persuasive abilities, our
experiences and our skills at the service of God, our neighbor and the common
good of the human family.62
John Paul II, World Day of Peace, January 1, 2001, at par. 10.
In some quarters, dialogue is viewed as a codeword for compromise and relativism. For the Pope, however, dialogue is the vehicle of truth and serves to safeguard
freedom of conscience. In the dialogue between cultures, no side can be presented
from proposing to the other the values in which it believes, as long as this is done in
a way that is respectful of people's freedom and conscience. Truth can be imposed
only with the force of truth itself, which penetrates the mind both gently and powerfully. John Paul II, World Day of Peace, January 1, 2001, at par. 15.
62 John Paul II, Address to Conference of Business Executives, Organized by the
Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace and the International Union of Christian Business Executives, ZENIT, March 5, 2004.
60
61

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Culture and the Individual: Psychological Impact of Globalization

75

This is his vision. It is my fervent hope that the world community is listening.
Summary
The widespread phenomenon of globalization has been studied from many different
viewpoints. Since the family is the cornerstone of society, and the mental health of
each family member directly impacts the health of the rest, then a crucial aspect of
globalization is the psychological effects on the individual. This paper proposes that
globalization as such is neither good nor bad; it is what people make of it. Under
what parameters, then, is it enriching and not destructive? After reviewing the Holy
Father's analysis of these parameters, psychological research on how globalization impacts personal and cultural identity, especially during adolescence, is discussed. The
final section integrates these views and offers recommendations for authentic, healthy
globalization.

Zusammenfassung
Das weitverbreitete Phnomen der Globalisierung wurde von verschiedenen Gesichtspunkten her studiert. hnlich wie die Familie der Grundstein der Gesellschaft ist
und die geistige Gesundheit eines jeden Familienmitglieds die Gesundheit aller brigen direkt berhrt, spitzt sich auch bei der Globalisierung die Frage darauf zu, ob
davon psychologische Wirkungen auf das Individuum ausgehen. Dieser Beitrag legt
dar, da die Globalisierung weder gut noch schlecht ist; vielmehr wird sie zu dem,
was die Menschen aus ihr machen. Es stellt sich die Frage nach den Beurteilungskriterien, ob die Globalisierung zu wnschenswerten oder zu destruktiven Ergebnissen
fhrt. Nach einem Blick auf die Analyse dieser Kriterien, die der Papst anwendet,
konzentriert sich die psychologische Untersuchung ber den Einflu der Globalisierung auf die persnliche und kulturelle Identitt. Abschlieend werden diese verschiedenen Aspekte zusammen gesehen und Empfehlungen fr eine authentische, gesunde
Globalisierung abgeleitet.

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Multiculturalism within the Gates


By Kenneth L. Schmitz
I.
Given the many thoughtful presentations that have taken up the financial,
economic, political, legal and ethical aspects of globalization, it is daunting for
a philosopher to speak to the metaphysics of the process. A metaphysical approach is so general that it seems unlikely to offer little of importance, and to
intrude upon the more particular, relevant and urgent issues that need to be
dealt with. If it does have something to contribute, it will be at a fundamental
and comprehensive level. For, inasmuch as globalization is a process, metaphysics may have a word to add. A process, after all, is a change, and that invites
reflection upon the bearing of time past, present, and future as well as
space here and there upon human life and human values.
Leading Euro-American Enlightenment thinkers during the past two centuries
have given pre-eminent value to the concept of Progress1; and, indeed, much of
the literature on the subject of modernization has stressed the novelty of globalization;2 so that one may well ask: Will anything significant remain from the
past? And more particularly, given the theme of our present conference: What
is the likely fate of traditional cultures in the face of the new phenomenon?
1 In their criticism of modernity, so-called postmodern thinkers such as JeanFranois Lyotard, The Postmodern Condition, Jacques Derrida, Grammatology, and
others reject the concept of progress, without, however, embracing that of tradition;
on the contrary, they have accentuated the new and the different.
2 For example, Lester G. Thurow (MIT), Building Wealth. The New Rules for Individuals, Companies, and Nations in a Knowledge-Based Economy (New York: Collins/Harper Business, 2001) stresses the gaps where disequilibrium or market imbalance occurs and that offer new and unprecedented opportunities for profit. A popular expression on the back of a sportshirt touts the cutting edge of the momentary:
Since baseball time is measured in outs, all you have to do is succeed utterly; keep
the rally alive and you have defeated time: you remain forever young. (Roger Angeli, The Interior Stadium). Not only does this devalue the significance of the aged
among us; it also denies the value of the other moments of time in the pattern of human growth. Quite to the contrary, St. Thomas Aquinas, building upon Aristotle,
has remarked that time is, as it were, a help-mate [co-adjutor] in human affairs. And,
on the grounds of faith, the Christian believes that a new fullness of life is received
only through death, and except for those alive at the End-Time, only after death.
Time is not defeated, but receives its full meaning and value.

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78

Kenneth L. Schmitz

The challenge is impressive insofar as the many cultures of the world are
being brought into more direct and immediate contact and not seldom into
conflict3 closer contact than ever before, brought together in new ways
through trade and tele-communications.4 Moreover, what is at issue is not only
the relations between separated cultures, but the degree to which more than one
culture is co-present with others within the space of a single country, as they
are in the newly minted countries of Africa, within the somewhat more established countries such as Belgium and Canada, and even in the large minorities
resident within older initially mono-cultural countries, such as France and Germany.5
In the face of such massive change, basic questions arise: Why perpetuate a
culture? and: Why prolong a tradition? The several centuries-long phenomenon
of modernization has presently taken more vigorous shape in the process of
globalization and has quickened its pace.6 The energy of the process raises to
new prominence the issue of the durability or fragility of traditional cultures.7

3 Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World


Order (New York: Simon & Schuster/Touchstone, 1996), divides the world into several spheres of influence, each grounded initially in a distinctive religious base; so
that conflicts on the periphery, where they rub against one another, may bring the
different power-centers into conflict with one another.
4 See, for example, Jas. E. Rauch (UC at San Diego) & Alessandra Casella (Columbia & Hautes Etudes, Paris), Networks and Markets (New York: Russell Sage
Foundation, 2001); especially, pp. 329336. Also, Art Kleiner, Karen Stephenson's
Quantum Theory of Trust, in: Strategy + Business: Creative Minds (Special Issue,
Fall 2004, Booz, Allen, Hamilton), pp. 5871, esp. p. 67. I am indebted to John
O'Brien for guidance in and discussion of the literature.
5 Even prior to the 20th century migration of workers from Turkey and elsewhere,
the drive for a united Germany dealt with the regional diversity of Bavaria, Saxony,
Prussia, East Prussia and the Rhineland. Something similar occurred in France earlier
between the regions of langue d'oc and langue d'oeuil. But, for the most part, these
developments occurred within a single language and culture. Earlier still in the Middle
Ages, however, there was considerable cultural diversity between regions and countries, even to the acceptance of various customary bodies of law.
6 Without denying the novelty endemic to globalization, it may be understood as
the latest phase in an older process. John Mickelthwait & Ardian Wooldridge (both of
The Economist) trace the history of the development of business organization, reaching back to earlier phases and passing on from the mediaeval guilds to the chartered
companies of the 17th century and the joint-limited-liability stock company of the
19th, concluding with a look to the future (p. 185): The Company. A Short History of
a Revolutionary Idea (New York: Modern Library, 2003).
7 Presumably, the maintenance of a tradition and a culture is not guaranteed. Josef
Pieper in his many works has reminded us that the preservation of tradition requires
an effort on the part of each generation to hand on the deposit to the next. See: ber
den Begriff der Tradition (Kln & Opladen: Westdeutscher Verlag, 1958), Tradition
als Herausforderung (Mnchen: Ksel, 1963), and: berlieferung (Mnchen: Ksel,
1970).

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Multiculturalism within the Gates

79

Given the theme of our colloquium, permit me to briefly recall the structural
dynamics of globalization familiar to you , since they provide the framework
for the remarks that follow, insofar as the dynamics bear upon the metaphysics
of change. What strikes one first in the literature on globalization is the prominence given to the financial and economic sectors of modern life. There can be
no doubt that this emphasis is justified, since they are the most visible features
and the most active agents in the process. Among the most important institutions that oversee the global processes are the IMF (International Monetary
Fund) with its mandate for monetary oversight, the World Bank with its stewardship in economic development, the conditions of labor and the reduction of
poverty, and the WTO (World Trade Organization) with its concern with trade.
Only by bearing these institutions in mind can one enter meaningfully into even
a partial understanding of the process, and begin to think at all clearly about
other, wider and deeper dimensions of globalization. The orientation of this colloquium has turned its attention to some of these other aspects. And so I am
encouraged to ask, how the international context, overseen by these global institutions in relation to national governments, impacts upon the texture of the cultures and traditions of the developed and developing world?
From the perspectives of financial, economic and commercial oversight, it is
clear that the three organizations just mentioned are of central importance. They
are meant to play key roles in preserving stability and promoting innovation in
financial markets, in issues of employment, productivity and poverty, and in the
furtherance of trade. While acknowledging the necessity for transnational institutions, criticism has been made that a narrow market fundamentalism has
dominated the policies of the IMF, and at least some of the earlier policies of
the World Bank.8 Meetings of the WTO have regularly aroused vociferous protests voiced with the most indignant rhetoric.9
More moderate charges have been made that policies have often favored the
developed countries while causing instability and increased poverty in developing countries. The justice of such charges must be left to others more expert
8 See, among others, Josef Stiglitz (formerly at Brookings, Stanford and presently
at Columbia U., Nobel Prize Winner, formerly on the Council of Economic Advisers
for the Clinton White House, and Senior Vice-President for the World Bank), Globalization and its Discontents (New York: Norton, 2003).
9 For example, from the 2003 Annual Report of Inter Pares (Ottawa): We are living in a time when citizenship seems in danger of becoming extinct. The state is run
as a corporation with citizens as clients and stakeholders. Public relations and messaging' have replaced truth and communication in public discourse. Education and
research institutions serve commercial interests rather than the broader public interest,
and science' is used to defend policy and profit rather than truth and public wellbeing. We are seeing the privatization of public goods, such as water, and the commodification of public services, such as health and education. Citizenship is no longer a
right, but a privilege of wealth and social status.

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80

Kenneth L. Schmitz

than I in economic affairs, but they do serve to raise the issue of the capacity
for cultures in the developing countries to adapt to material progress, while preserving and nourishing what is of permanent worth in their cultural memory,
values, and customs.
A second dimension of globalization is political.10 And here the question is
whether globalization has led to a diminution in the central power and sovereign authority of the nation state.11 The prospect of a supernational world political government, with the sovereign authority of a present-day nation-state, is
not foreseeable even if such a hotly contested idea were desirable. In the
political literature, however, a suggestive distinction has been made between
government and governance.12 The latter term is applicable not only to the empowered authority possessed by the governments of nation-states with their
heavy responsibilities for defence, foreign policy and internal order; governance
also entrains with it a broader claim to a less formal sort of legitimacy that is
resident in civil society associations.13
The concept of governance (as distinct from government) includes the loose
network of non-governmental institutions and civil associations. We can attribute a sense of governance to these associations inasmuch as they often play an
effective role in the full spectrum of international and global issues, even
though they do not wield the political, legal and military power of national
governments or the delegated mandatory power of transnational organizations.14
10 Mark R. Brawley (McGill U.), The Politics of Globalization: Gaining Perspective, Assessing Consequences (Peterborough: Broadview Press, 2003) provides a brief
history of growth in trade and in financial institutions within the political context (pp.
179188), and discusses the consequences for democracy (pp. 5153), calling for a
new balance between the market and society. (p. 218)
11 Samuel Huntington (Harvard), author of The Clash of Civilizations, extends the
argument made in that book to a defence of American national identity in Who are
We? The Challenges to America's National Identity (New York: Norton, 2004), arguing that what is needed since 9/11 is the restoration of the dissident Anglo-Protestant core values associated with America's national identity (pp. 6266 et passim).
12 For example, among others, David Held & Mathias Koenig-Archibugi (edd.;
both of the London School of Economics), Taming Globalization: Frontiers of Governance (Cambridge/Oxford: Polity Press in association with Blackwell, 2003).
13 Robert Goodin (Australian National University), Globalizing Justice, in: Taming
Globalization: Frontiers of Governance (p. 83): The formal treaty regime the UN
Declaration [on Human Rights] and associated conventions, and the various other subject- or region-specific declarations and treaties creates the institutional site at which
all this activity occurs. But once that basic apparatus is in place, what drives social
change is basically just networking among activists. In the same volume, David Held
calls for Cosmopolitan Multilateralism, (pp. 160186), while others speak of CSOs
(Civil Society Organizations).
14 A distinction is to be made between civil associations and transnational institutions. While many NGOs and CSOs (Red Cross, Mdecin sans Frontires, etc.) have
interests beyond national borders, transnational organizations (such as the WHO, ILO,
WTO, etc.) occupy a serviceable intermediate status between these and national gov-

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Multiculturalism within the Gates

81

Now, it is true that many of these associations have been active for some considerable time, but (unless I have missed an extensive discussion in the literature) the concept of governance within the civic context , its under-pinnings,
source of authority and basis of legitimacy , has not been adequately explored
as to its status in the hierarchy of global institutions. Yet developing globalization brings with it a growing sense of civic legitimacy with its own rights and
responsibilities.
Whereas economic and financial institutions, such as the IMF and the World
Bank, have a defined mandate to work towards the increase of wealth and material well-being; and whereas political institutions aim to provide stability, security and the rule of law; and finally, whereas the transnational agencies of the
UN and various inter-state treaties aim at international collaboration ; the innumerable civil associations throughout the world engage the citizen in the
open field of social and cultural exchange. Globalization brings with it the
growing sense of a still somewhat undefined consciousness of world-citizenry
with its appropriate opportunities and responsibilities.
It is here, most of all, that the present conference has its focus and locus, its
character and role. If the body of the conference is its organizational and administrative structure as the German-American colloquium, its mind and soul
while providing national and international institutions with counsel , includes
among a variety of interests the concern for culture in the life of the citizen.
And here, too, a further question takes form: Does globalization have a culture? Can we speak truly of a culture of globalization? There are those who
fear that it has, and fearing the loss of their distinctive cultural identity they
call it McWorld. Or is globalization simply an inter-cultural reality, much as
the political world-order lacking a single world government is an international association of nation-states? It seems to me, rather, that a new social
form is taking shape as a global awareness, which is bringing about a more
expansive hybrid than either a single, uniform world-culture or a simple set of
national cultures: something that is no longer a single culture, nor yet a universal culture, and yet something more than a collection of separate cultures. Perhaps it is not so much a culture at all, but a new form of civilization with many
cultures.15 And so the question arises at the heart of the colloquium: What is
ernmental bureaus (such as the Department of Defence or the Ministry of Foreign
Affairs). Transnational organizations are the result of the collaboration of member national states of the United Nations (UNCTAD, etc.), or come about by international
treaty arrangements (NATO, NAFTA, etc.). Transnationals play a role in mediating
between nation states and NGOs/CSOs, many of whom receive at least partial funding
from national governments. CSOs and NGOs, on the other hand, arise out of voluntary initiatives within civil contexts.
15 There are striking similarities and differences between the present process and
the ancient Roman Imperium. Among the differences besides the obvious difference

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the relation between the identity of diverse cultures and the civilization that
globalization is building? and, more particularly, what is the status of civil associations in this setting?
II.
It is here, perhaps, that metaphysics has something to say. As we address the
theme of national and cultural identity within the process of globalization, we
might begin at the beginning, which is to say with the identity of ourselves as
constituent members of various local, regional, national, transnational, and civil
associations within the global setting. Now, this is to begin with the enculturation of ourselves as persons. Samuel Huntington in his most recent book addresses the question of American cultural identity.16 And he answers with a
rallying call to return Americans to their founding roots, which he describes as
non-establishment Anglo-Protestantism.17
Instead of speaking of the identity of a single culture, globalization challenges us to consider more generally the question of the perpetuation of distinctive cultural traditions within a global setting. I say traditions in the plural;
for, as we experience the irreducible diversity of cultures, we intuit that, in our
human finitude, no one cultural form is capable of exhausting the rich possibilities of being human. In short, the plurality and diversity of cultures and traditions is not haphazard or without meaning for humankind as a whole.
As we address the question of cultural traditions, however, it is not enough to
talk about them. The pressures brought to bear upon all cultural traditions by
globalization makes it necessary to do more than talk about the identity of a
cultural tradition: it is necessary to draw upon the general and essential features
of tradition and culture, upon the character of cultural tradition as such. Only
then will we be able to see how the durability and relative permanence of particular cultures might fare and function within the present process. The dynamics
of tradition, in its primary structure, need to be put into play.

in the pace of technological development is that at that time a unified state government possessing a single Latin culture exercized imperial sovereign administrative
powers. But the similarities abound as well, especially the multi-cultural complexity
of the Empire. See John Buchan, Augustus (London: Hodder and Stoughton, 1941). A
general sort of Romanitas was widespread, and Latin, if not Greek, was widely used
among the leadership class, somewhat in the way that English seems to be the lingua
franca of much of commerce and technology today.
16 See fn. 11 above.
17 He summarizes the notion with a quotation from Edmund Burke: [T]he religion
most prevalent in our northern colonies is a refinement on the principle of resistance:
it is the dissidence of dissent, and the protestantism of the Protestant religion. (Who
are We?, p. 64).

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There is a certain paradox operative here, however; for to put these general
and essential features to work, it is necessary to draw upon conceptions and
values that have come down to each one of us through our own distinctive
culture and its traditions, and to put them to the task of clarifying the issue in
terms more general than the identity of a single culture. Conscious of the polar
tension between local particularity and universal totality, Goethe summed up
the liaison with the affirmation: Ich bin Weimarer, ich bin Welt-Brger. And so,
we receive, if not an answer to our earlier question, still an aspiration towards
world-citizenry that is to be reconciled with our local and cultural identities. So,
too, I would be a citizen of Canada and a dweller in the city of Toronto, while
at the same time aspiring to be a world-citizen.18 To explore this relation, however, I must take my stand within a definite tradition, in order to see what it
might shed upon the general issue of culture and tradition in the age of globalization. The tradition, with which I explore the concept, begins with the Greeks,
is developed during the European Middle Ages, and is still alive today. While it
has aspects peculiar to itself, like any other tradition, it also has more general
features that address the human condition in a fundamental and all-embracing
way. For in and through this tradition we have come to understand identity and
diversity, unity and difference, the same and the other, in an illuminating manner that is relevant to other traditions. Now, in this intellectual tradition, we
find the rich and variable concept of analogy (analogia entis) as the resolution
that preserves diversity without loss of unity, and that internalizes the unity of
human nature within the diversity of its cultures. So that we need not fear the
loss of difference, or despair over the loss of unity.
In a word, the analogous character of each human being is meant to be open
to both Weimar and Welt. Indeed, the anticipated-and-partially-achieved reconciliation of lived space among the peoples of the world is grounded in the com18 It is not easy to balance these loyalties. I experienced a bifurcated version of the
poet's maxim, when being shown a tourist site in the charming Upper Bavarian city
of Landshut. My elderly guide asked me: Was fr ein Landsmann sind Sie? to
which I answered, conscious no doubt of my own massive land: Ich bin Kanadier.
Interessant! he opined, with equal pride: Ich bin Landshuter. For a defence of
the spirit of a locality, see the famous radio address of Martin Heidegger, Warum ich
in den Provinzen geblieben bin. Smaller centers are under pressure. Jane Jacobs,
The Life of Cities and the Wealth of Nations, has called attention to the role of certain large modern cities in the generation of both wealth and the spirit of the civitas
and its citizenry. There can be no doubt that globalization is building a city-centered,
largely urban environment in which the ratio of production between the agrarian rural
districts and the urban centers favors the latter. The recent meeting in China has acknowledged the imbalance in the regime's improvement of urban conditions to the
neglect of the countryside. In most developed countries, food production engages less
than 3% of the work-force, so that smaller communities are acutely sensitive to the
imbalance. A side-effect, which is a further issue not here discussed, is that in addition to the durability of cultures within the global setting, there is a related issue of
the preservation of smaller local communities within each culture.

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position of reality itself. Within the texture of being, each person is a subject of
being: suppositum entis, a non-self-originated entity with an orientation toward
some kind of finality, participating in a particular way in the very texture of
being and its properties. The analogous understanding of the unity and diversity
of humanity does not ensure wise policies in particular situations; expert knowledge is required for that. But it does encourage an ample horizon and a generous attitude towards the surprising differentiation within humankind; and it reminds us that we owe respect to the ontological context and tradition, within
which we have emerged and within which we carry on our lives.
The formation of the encultured individual begins humbly and mysteriously
with the father's seed and the mother's flesh, within some kind of familial setting and parental care, flowering into adolescence and young adulthood within a
specific context. It is advanced by a web of relations: the reception of a genetic
code, giving us what the Greeks called temperament and we call disposition, as distinct from the character we are meant to develop through cultural
experience. For in the formative process, culture begins to take precedence over
genetics. I use the word culture to mean the ways in which an individual and
a society shape their values and customs as guides to both the ordinary events
of life as well as its crises. A culture is a determinate influence, often taking
shape as a pre-reflective receptivity that plays a role in forming the character of
persons and the ethos of a society.
Nor is this formation a merely accidental affair, if by accidental we mean
what easily comes and goes. We need to refine our understanding of the familiar terms, substance and accident. Traditional metaphysics distinguishes between substantial generation and corruption, on the one hand, and so-called accidental acquisition or loss, on the other. But, we need to nuance what we mean
by accidental. Just as civil associations stand between national governments,
on the one hand, and global institutions, on the other, so, too, cultural formation
is a distinctive acquisition and enjoys a distinctive status that stands between
substantial change and ordinary accidental acquisition. For the acquisition of
culture does not fit easily into this exclusive division between substance and
accident.19 More precisely, there is a significant variety among the acquired
characteristics that have been called accidental. And, if we carefully consider
the wide range of so-called accidental changes, the differences among them exhibit greater or less depth of inherence in the substance, and embrace the person more or less totally, as they come to reside in the individual and contribute
to his or her character and identity.

19 One sees the externalization that separates so-called accidents from the substance
occur among post-Aristotelian Stoics and Atomists. It is an externalism that has been
made even more radical by modern nominalist tendencies.

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Consider the difference between a Frenchman and his hair coiffure. The hair
may be easily arranged or rearranged, and over the years will alter its color.
Such traits are, indeed, accidental in the sense of superficial and transient, however important the individual may consider them to be at the time. But what of
his culture? What about the language he speaks and in which he thoughtfully
and emotionally dwells,20 and the way in which he carries out his daily activities, the range of his reading, the set of his interests and values? Surely, being
French is more deeply and wholly settled upon him and in him than the styling
of his hair, though even that may be in some fashion French.
The banality of the example serves to indicate that there are radical differences of depth and comprehensiveness among what we might call the non-substantial but not insubstantial! features of an individual. Cultural acquisitions, such as language and inherited history and values, are deeper and more
integral factors in the individual's make-up. And while they are not identical
with the substance (since they can be lost without the loss of the individual's
basic existence), yet they are not superficial or merely partial. Among these are
one's primary culture, one's embedment in the language and social institutions
of a culture. The enduring quality of this cultural deposit is manifest in that it
does not disappear when one acquires a newly adopted political nationality,
though it may be drastically altered thereby. So that, strictly speaking, there is
a distinction between culture and national status , the one a civil and deeply
anthropological feature, the other a legal and political one, though for most
persons they coincide.
Through cultural acquisitions and transformations, the individual retains his
or her identity and yet is changed internally and wholly , one might even say,
architectonically, as one receives a distinctive interior architecture. Now, a culture is a generous household that has many rooms within it. Within the same
culture, one individual is drawn into a life of productive activity, another will
be led to cultivate an unquenchable curiosity for an understanding of reality,
another for the celebration of beauty, still another for the pursuit of holiness;
and these modifications will transform the whole of the individual's life, comprehensively and intensively, redirecting it towards a goal, and giving it a tonality that is distinguisable yet all but inseparable from the supposit. Within the
culture and through its modalities, the process realizes a determinate development of personality and character, that which the Greeks called ethos.21
Now, it is not only individuals who receive an ethos; cultures do as well.
And while it is no less mysterious than the character of an individual, a collecHeidegger aptly termed language the house of being.
I use the term anthropologically, in the broadly cultural sense to indicate an
habitual way of life, that includes ethical (as well as non-ethical and even unethical) qualities but is not restricted to the narrower sense of ethically good.
20
21

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tive character is more complex. Our attempts at stereotypes fail to capture the
cultural difference, and they are rightly repudiated insofar as they are often negative and pejorative; but they also signal an intuitive sense of that difference.
The ethos is a sort of collective character, differing in degree among individuals, more or less present in them, sometimes even rejected by them, and yet
a deeply resident factor in the social life of members of that culture and determinative of the culture as a whole. If the collective ethos is the result, cultural
formation is the process or change that brings about the ethos through education
in the family, neighborhood, school and the broader culture.
Now, Aristotle, drawing upon his own culture, is justly famed for providing
us with a plethora of names for various factors in the phenomenon of change:
among them, genesis, metabole, kinesis, symbebekos, hypokeimenon, steresis,
hyle, energeia, dunamis, poein, praxis, pathos, katharsis, and at the intellectual
level, dianoia and logismos. The terms simply pour out, indicating the importance of the phenomenon.
And yet it is, to my knowledge, Hegel who saw even more deeply into a
certain internality between what we call accidents and what we term substance,
between the supposit and its modifications.22 Towards the end of the second
book of the Wissenschaft der Logik, Hegel reflects upon the reciprocity between the substance and the accidents that it acquires. And he suggests that,
especially with regard to the deeper modifications of the substance, there is an
internal transformation of the substance, whereby the supposit retains its identity and yet is changed intrinsically, not simply externally or superficially. I
would only add that the penetration to which Hegel alludes is especially true of
cultural energies such as education, commitment to a cause, religious conversion and above all, incorporation into a linguistic culture.
Oddly, we have few precise names for the effect of such forces, and those
mostly name the crises in our lives in which dramatic changes have occurred,
rather than in the quiet on-going processes that for the most part bring about
cultural identity. For cultural influences work quietly throughout our lives, and
especially in the early years of character formation. Such deep changes do not
result in a wholly new being as in substantial generation or corruption (which is
the gain or loss of basic individual existence and identity); but neither are they
merely superficial acquisitions or losses (as in transient accidental alteration).
Each ingredient of cultural formation is a change within a substance that is not
itself a change of substance. And yet such changes within the substance and not
22 I do not mean to fault Aristotle as though he externalized the relation between
matter and accidents in the way some of the post-Aristotelian thinkers did (fn. 19
above); it is simply that, while taking unprecedented steps in advancing the analysis
of change, he did not carry the thrust of his understanding as far as he might have,
nor with the depth that Hegel effected with the help of the Greek thinker.

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merely to it are the most important factors in the formation of cultural identity,
both for the individual and for a society.
If we now relate these metaphysical considerations to the process of globalization, we are led to recognize that the intrusion of modern technological developments, however well-intentioned and planned, need to take into account the
deeply indwelling presence of the receiving culture, so that if it has not already been the practice of imaginative and sensitive directors modern companies may be well advised to employ negotiators of the first rank, as consultants
or officers in charge of cultural affairs, who are skilled in the relevant culture.
What is needed is neither distant company executives, nor local bureaucrats
who may have a political or commercial interest in the project, but rather a
culturally informed vice-president or cultural consultant with first-order responsibilities.23
The charges of market fundamentalism and too rapid liberalization of
money markets24 may best be left to others more knowledgeable than I to adjudicate, but what can be said is that, even if rectified by better economic and
financial policies, the answer does not lie in economics alone. To address such
23 The frequent absence of such an understanding is, in part at least, why the introduction of modern technical and economic activities into traditional societies often
raises protests from their members, and sometimes violence. It is not enough to point
to the economic advantages that may well accrue to such developments, or to simply
dismiss the indigenous dwellers as backward and ignorant of their own good. Examples of such inter-cultural conflict are many. A recent one may illustrate the typical
character of the conflict: A multinational Canadian mining company, with full cooperation of the bureaucracy of a state in the middle of India, have been met with vehement resistance from the tribal farmers. What is at stake is more than the portion of
tropical carpet of mango and tamarind trees and the small farms whose land will be
expropriated to make way for a 20 kilometre conveyor belt to carry bauxite. Nor is it
only the disagreement over how much land will be uprooted and how many people
will be evicted. A deeply engrained culture of the land is at stake. Whereas some of
the local merchants favor the project, seeing future profits, others including the farmers are not attracted to benefits that are as yet absent and foreign to them, requiring
skills for which they are unprepared, and even more, seriously transformative of their
traditional way of life. (Toronto Star, A1 & 1012, July 3, 2004)
24 For market fundamentalism, see among others, Jos. Stiglitz, op. cit. Regarding the rate of social change, Msgr. Pedro Arrupe, S. J. (in a talk reported in the
Bulletin of the Institute for Theological Encounter with Science and Technology,
Spring, 2002; vol. 35/no.2, pp. 546) recounts an incident from John Adams, The Discovery of the Amazon: Having pressed his porters to the limit, the explorer found
them unwilling to move farther; and when he sought the reason, they replied that we
must now wait for our souls to catch up with our bodies. This is surely emblematic
of the issues of rapid cultural change. Whereas progressive modern thought has
spelled out a directional compass for socio-political change, right, left, centre, it has
paid less attention to the temporal rate: too fast, too slow, just right. For further
discussion, including that of Pope John Paul II, see: Globalization: Christian Challenges, edd. R. Brungs, S. J. & M. Postiglione, RSM (St. Louis: ITEST Faith/Science
Press, 2004); in particular, Edw. O'Boyle (Mayo Research Institute), Norms for Evaluating Globalization, (pp. 5258).

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deeply human change at the level of policy and action impacts upon more profound and integral dimensions of life and needs to take these into account in
ways sensitive to a larger horizon of concern than the immediate benefits of the
project. This is where the rubber hits the road, and no tire company would
design a tire without careful preparatory in-depth studies of the full range of
road conditions. So, too, entrepreneurs must still engage the deeper fact that
globalization implicates the culture and is, at bottom, a cultural phenomenon
itself, impacting upon development, tradition and community, that is, upon human time, space and being. What is needed in such conflicts is more than the
commercial promise of little understood improvements in living standards that
are alien to the culture. A skilled negotiator, with an intimate understanding of
the particular culture, will work to find in that culture those indigenous energies
that will be better able to define and advance the project to the benefit of both
company and community.
Group identity is already grounded in and prepared for by the changes within
individuals that are brought about by cultural formation. And yet the collective
has a dynamic of its own as well, which is embodied reciprocally in the group
and it members, and which is determinative in shaping the members of the
group and the manner of their responses. These cultural energies are the soil in
which the character of individuals and societies takes root and finds nurture.
For older nations, this early process of group constitution is mostly lost in the
mythical past. But cultural identity takes other forms, as well. There are those
who aspire to a national identity not yet certified by others (such as the Kurds,
many of whom look towards a future Kurdistan). And other groups who have
come to nationhood recently, i. e. within the last two or three centuries (such as
the Americans), for whom the initial steps in the constitution of their political
unity as a people is more or less explicitly known and recorded. And finally,
there are those states that have more than one nation and culture within their
borders (as does my own country of Canada).25
III.
If it is true that the process of enculturation is as deep and comprehensive as
I have made it out to be, the question arises: Given the presence of multiculturalism, both at the global level as well as within national states, what institutional forms might best contribute to the peaceful and fruitful development of
cultural identities? There seem to be three possibilities: The first is that of the
exclusion (but not the ethnic cleansing!!) of all but members of the one culture,
25 Which, after earlier unsuccessful attempts at the assimilation of the Inuit, has
recently constituted Nunavut as a vast semi-autonomous region in the Eastern Arctic.
Some such arrangement may eventually occur with the Dene in the Western Arctic,
though that is complicated by the diversity of languages within the Dene.

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at least by restrictions upon aliens. On the other hand, inclusion takes two
forms: first, that of the assimilation of immigrant cultures into the reigning,
main-stream culture;26 and second, that of the integration of several cultures
within an explicitly multi-cultural state.27 In sum, the strategies are: exclusion,
inclusion as assimilation, and inclusion as integration.
The question of an appropriate accommodation of several cultures bears only
indirectly upon those polities in which state and culture are more or less identical. The form of the modern state has taken shape usually as an organized
government with sovereignty over a geographical area. The state can then be
regarded in legal terms as the guardian and expression of a particular language
and culture. For such a state, the issue of other cultures takes the form of international policy in dealing with foreign cultures, though the importance of such
policy is heightened today by globalization.
That is not an option for multi-cultural countries, even where one culture
may be dominant.28 Such countries draw a distinction between the political
institutions of the unitary state (federal, confederated or regionalized) and the
several ethnic groups within it. The form a nation, understood in this original
sense, takes within such a state is principally cultural, even if in some cases it
enjoys a measure of political control over its own affairs.29 The mixture of cultures within some large cities constitutes what might be called an internal cosmopolitan multiculturalism.
Global interaction has made all of these relationships more complex, and it is
a task for a multicultural state (of whatever variant form) to generate the unifying sense of patriotism, pride and loyalty that has been so successfully engendered by nation states and that is required for unified state action. To be sure,
any success in generating a trans-cultural loyalty toward such an integrated
multi-cultural state presupposes civil peace among the various groups. More26 If I have understood Samuel Huntington's argument in Who are We?, he insists that American identity will be best served by an open, generous and inclusive
assimilation of ethnically diverse immigrants (with their sub-cultures) but with strong
inducement to assimilate into the core American values of the original Anglo-Protestant settlers, expressed in the American Creed. (pp. 2133: The Concept of Identity;
pp. 5962: The Cultural Core; and pp. 6669: The American Creed.)
27 An integrated multi-cultural state pursues a different dynamic, even when one
culture is dominant. Some states even acknowledge the propriety and status of several
cultures within the state by having a ministry of multi-cultural affairs, giving the cultural status of ethnic groups an officially acknowledged legitimacy.
28 I use the word country here advisedly, to reserve the original sense of the term
nation, not as a political entity, but to designate a group of people bound together
by an inherited linguistic and cultural patrimony, as when we speak of the French
nation within Canada, or the aboriginal nations. Thus, Switzerland is a country with a
state that embraces four nations: German, French, Italian and Romanch.
29 As do the cantons in Switzerland, the Kurdish region in Iraq, or the province of
Qubec.

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over, inter-marriage compounds the mixture, so that it is an open question, in


these states, whether integration will over time give way to assimilation, not
however to a dominant cultural group but by mutual interaction. In any event,
it would result in a new identity, thus adding to the diversity of cultures!
It is in this milieu, both in the world and within a country, that civil associations should be encouraged and supported to come into possession of their own
medium, using the resources of research, information, education, the call to service and persuasive activism, often in cooperation with national and transnational organizations, sometimes in opposition to them. Globalization is a reality already forcefully underway, building an emerging civilization, understanding the term civilization to be distinct from that of culture. It is a process
amenable to human direction. I have stressed the metaphysical underpinnings
that need to be in play in the process, but it is not with the intention of ignoring the ethical. It is, rather, that the acknowledgement of the analogical texture
of being encourages us to allow the ethical values and promptings within it to
point the way, grounded as they are in the ontological dignity of the person, the
community and the environment.30
The best directive instrument of globalization is a judicious mix of national
states, transnational agencies (including their umbrella, the UN), and the manifold of civil associations, which, after the manner of pilot fishes, being lighter
and quicker, often show the way forward into unexplored waters giving new
direction to larger and more encumbered national and transnational bodies.
Within this mix, what grounds do we have for thinking that the diversity of
cultures will survive, and for wanting them to survive?
There is, first and most fundamentally a personal motive: it is the deeply
rooted process of cultural formation in the building of the identity of the individual in the group. As already mentioned, this includes the early transmission of
traditions in the formation of the individual, in which family, language acquisition, neighborhood, school, and other cultural institutions play a formative role.
Secondly, there is an anthropological reason: it is the need and present opportunity for humanity at large to profit from the experience of the inescapable
partiality of one's own culture. Every culture that has survived is in some sense
universal; that is, it has proven itself capable of meeting the basic material,
30 In the Address to the Seventh Plenary Session of the Pontifical Academy of
Social Sciences (2001), Pope John Paul II observed that: Globalization, a priori, is
neither good nor bad. It will be what people make of it. No system is an end in itself,
and it is necessary to insist that globalization, like any other system, must be at the
service of the human person; it must serve solidarity and the common good. And
further that, ethical discernment in the context of globalization must be based upon
two inseparable principles: First, the inalienable value of the human person, source of
all human rights and every social order . . . Second, the value of human culture which
no external power has the right to downplay and still less to destroy.

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physical, cultural and spiritual needs of its members. It meets these, however, in
a way that does not foreclose upon other possibilities of cultivation and expression, possibilities that enrich the total human experience. What is needed for
the radically diversified human group is to find support-systems for the maintenance and development of cultures through organizational forms. On the one
hand, trade is the great affirmation of our common humanity, based upon negotiable needs and wants. It can be a positive factor in advancing the unity of
humankind. On the other, however, when relied upon exclusively, with its
powerful modern energies, many fear that it may tend to level everything into a
cultural flatland.31 Fortunately, the deeply held personification of culture in the
individual and the anthropological nature of the group should moderate this
process, as long as human beings come into the world through other human
beings and grow in time and space within their company. And it is here that
civil society associations have a legitimate and potentially creative role to play.
Finally, I come to the fundamental ontological ground; and rest the durability
of the diversity of cultures upon the texture of being and its own analogical
character, whereby diversity and unity are intrinsically reconciled as mutually
expressive of the very nature of reality itself. Even the most unpromising desert
is a cradle of diversity within a unity. Why should we expect humanity to be
different? In sum: both diversity and unity reside together in person, human
nature and being itself.
Still, after this has been said, the contribution of metaphysics is not to preempt the final decisional role of economics, politics and social praxis in the
formulation of policies that engage the situation. It is, rather, to offer an ontological, anthropological, communal and personal basis and horizon for the determination of particular strategies and decisions. It seems to me that the framework suggested by metaphysics is consonant with the texture of being and its
principles, and above all with the analogical character of being as a unity that
is embodied and realized in diversity, even as our shared humanity is embedded
in the diversity of cultures.

31 Benjamin R. Barber (Rutgers) puts the issue starkly, if somewhat colorfully, in:
Jihad vs. McWorld (New York: Ballantine, 1996): McWorld's war proceeds by inadvertance, circumventing heart and mind in favor of viscera and the five senses, seducing peoples with the siren call of self-interest and desire where the self is defined
wholly by want, wish, and the capacity to consume. (p.188) Somewhat more moderately, he argues: Neither Jihad [exclusivism] nor McWorld [indiscriminacy] promises
a remotely democratic future. (p. 220) And eventually, in an even more temperate
tone, he concludes: Humankind depends for its liberty on variety and difference. We
are governed best when we live in several spheres, each with its own rules and benefits, none wholly dominated by another . . . McWorld has virtues, then, but they scarcely warrant permitting the market to become sovereign over politics, culture, and
civil society. (pp. 296298)

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Kenneth L. Schmitz

Two ontological factors ground this fundamental framework: the formation in


depth of the cultural identity of the person and the group and which a tradition
serves to cultivate; and secondly, the analogical character of the reality within
which that formation takes place, which seals the unity of mankind within a
diversity of cultures. A global order of unity-in-diversity realizes the texture of
being and participates in its principles through the discovery of truth about the
way things are and are meant to be, and the pursuit of the good that perfects
the community of men and things. To absolutize either unity or diversity is to
let a partial aspect of reality lead us astray from the balance inherent in being.
For if metaphysics tells us anything, it is that the reconciliation of unity and
difference of Weimar and Welt is the very ethos of being itself.
Summary
Personal and community identity comes about through a process that involves genetic and cultural forces. Beginning in the womb and continuing in the family, neighborhood, school and larger society it is a deeply embedded process of acquisition and
formation. Globalization is also a process, largely economic, yet entailing profound
changes in the lives of individuals and communities. The interaction occurs in the
medium of culture. It is here that NGOs and CSOs can help with their intimate knowledge of the receiving culture. At the same time, the international corporation can advance its own interest and that of the community by appointment of a senior executive in charge of cultural affairs, hopefully to the benefit of both parties.

Zusammenfassung
Die Identitt von Personen und Gemeinschaften bildet sich in einem Proze, der
genetische und kulturelle Krfte involviert. Er beginnt mit der Menschwerdung im
Mutterscho und setzt sich fort in der Familie, in der Nachbarschaft, in der Schule
und in der greren Gesellschaft; es ist ein stndiger Proze des Werdens und der
Formung. Globalisierung ist auch ein Proze, der vornehmlich die wirtschaftlichen
Verhltnisse erfat, zugleich aber tiefe Vernderungen im Leben der Individuen und
der Gemeinschaften hinterlt. Die Wechselwirkung ereignet sich inmitten der Kultur.
Auf diesem Feld knnen Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) und Civil Society
Organizations (CSOs) hilfreich wirken durch ihre gute Kenntnis der Verhltnisse.
Ebenfalls kann ein internationales Unternehmen seine eigenen Interessen und diejenigen der Gemeinschaft verfolgen, wenn es ein erfahrenes Vorstandsmitglied beruft, das
fr die kulturellen Belange verantwortlich ist. Dies kann sich fr beide Seiten gnstig
auswirken.

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Globalization, Religion, and Cultural Identity


By Thomas R. Rourke
I. Introduction
What is known in scholarly and political circles as globalization is widely
recognized as the wave carrying the world into the next epoch.1 The sociological weight of academic and political opinion lies with the conviction that globalization is either the solution to endemic problems of economic, political and
cultural underdevelopment or at least inevitable. Those holding the latter opinion, the less optimistic, are less sanguine about the prospects for globalization
as a panacea for a multitude of social ills, but nonetheless see no realistic alternative in the face of economic, political and cultural processes of such overwhelming force. The latter perception only heightens the tendency to accept
globalization as a given and proceed to examine how a given nation can best
take advantage of the opportunities it provides. It is extremely difficult for any
political leader or party to find traction on an anti-globalization platform. The
academic world is somewhat more open to more critical views, but even there
one risks at least the penalty of marginalization for being decidedly anti-globalist. Anti-globalists are rather quickly characterized as being on the extreme
right or left, lacking in the required attribute of accepting the powers that be,
otherwise known as being realistic, the absence of which tends to leave one's
political rationality in question.
Globalization is a process, which is at once economic, political, and cultural,
making attributions of cause and effect particularly tenuous. What is not in
doubt is that there is a confluence of variables in each of these fields, which
work together in ways sufficiently powerful to create at least the appearance
that the processes cannot be reversed. Briefly, we can characterize the processes of globalization as follows. Economically, technological advances, particularly in computer and communications technology, have multiplied the opportunities for international economic activity and opened up vast new vistas
of profitability. Investments are not for all that completely interchangeable with
respect to location, but there can be no question that there exists a strong ten1 The author wishes to thank Lexington Books for permission to publish excerpts
from Thomas R. Rourke and Rosita A. Chazarreta Rourke, A Theory of Personalism
(Lanham MD and London: Lexington Books, 2005).

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dency over time to make the cites of investment geographically flexible. At the
same time, there is a related explosion of international trade; as corporations
move production around the globe, the international transfer of goods becomes
as normal as the production and marketing of goods at the national level. The
technology that makes all of this possible is spurred on by the drive to reduce
the costs of production; in the competitive world, the company that can produce
at the least cost is likely to be the most successful. A second cost-cutting
method is to reduce the price of human labor, making job security largely a
thing of the past throughout even the developed world. Finally, the globalization of production and marketing has brought the world of finance along with
it. In fact, many observers would contest that the financial power has now become overarching. Financial transactions, often involving no more than punching a few keys, are the easiest to globalize. Much of the global financial market
is in fact speculative, that is, unrelated to the actual production of foreign goods
and services. The value of the holdings of people all over the world has increasingly been in fewer hands.
All of this has the most profound political ramifications. First and foremost,
the traditional methods of national economic regulation to a great extent no
longer function, or at least work in unpredictable ways. Changes in taxes, interest rates, inflation, and wages create global waves that no particular government
can control. Elected leaders feel determined by macroeconomic variables over
which they exercise decreasing levels of influence. The entire regulatory power
of the state is increasingly checked by the capacity of multinational enterprises,
most notably financial institutions, to alter their pattern of investments and the
location of their financial resources. Meanwhile, elected governments everywhere feel the pressure to attract new investments and sources of employment.
In the Third World, where rates of unemployment are often at what used to be
considered depression levels, this pressure is particularly acute. In order to attract capital, regimes must create a good investment climate, which can be
read as a euphemism for abandoning regulations of all kinds, from protections
for the rights of workers to the environment. Included among the goals laid
aside are ends which the social teaching of the Church has long considered
legitimate: minimum wage guarantees, health care and other benefits for workers, guarantees of collective bargaining rights, workplace safety, and the elimination of child labor. What makes matters worse is that governments compete
with one another to attract investments precisely by promising more freedom to
global capital and to eliminate regulations, even when the latter are palpably for
the common good, in what William Greider revealingly terms the global jobs
auction.2 This trend, long recognized as evidence of the weakness of Third
2 See William Greider, One World: Ready or Not (New York: Simon and Schuster,
1998).

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Globalization, Religion, and Cultural Identity

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World states, has now come full turn and impacts governments in the First
World as well. In what is euphemistically termed, corporate retention, local
and state governments feel compelled increasingly to grant more tax breaks,
subsidies and other public benefits to corporations or face their quick departure,
a powerful threat to political leaders particularly in election years.
The cultural front of globalization presents more complicated issues of interpretation. The banners of multiculturalism, cultural and religious pluralism,
and postmodernism suggest that cultural globalization is a victory for democracy, the elimination of cultural imperialism, and the expansion of the legitimate domain of liberty. The purveyors of such doctrines are ever ready to remind us of present or previous failures of modern democracies to preserve the
rights of minorities. It is the contention of this paper that such doctrines tend to
be philosophically obscure, are manipulated to serve arbitrary ends, and are in
the final analysis self-contradictory. What is more, they mask the reality of a
deeply disturbing centralization of cultural power allied with related political
and economic centralization.
II. The One and the Many: The Christian Paradigm
The claims of the multiculturalists, pluralists and postmodernists have to do
with the traditional metaphysical conundrum of the relationship between the
one and the many; questions about multiplicity cannot ultimately be answered
without reference to some kind of underlying unity which renders the many
intelligible. We owe it to Hans Urs von Balthasar for demonstrating that only
the Christian doctrine of the Incarnation ultimately solves the problem of the
one and the many.3 In philosophy, the issue arises in the conflict between empiricism, which emphasizes the particular and the concrete, and rationalism,
which emphasizes the universal and the abstract. Yet, neither approach gives an
adequate account of what it omits. Empiricism in its extreme reduces to positivism and jettisons the universal. Rationalism in its Hegelian extreme eliminates
the particular as part of the development of Absolute Being. Nor do non-Christian theological approaches arrive at satisfactory conclusions. In eastern mysticism, the many are absorbed into the One; in polytheism, pantheism and animism, the one is diffused among the many. Short of God Himself entering history in the way indicated by the Incarnation, it is not possible that any
particular revelation could in the final analysis lay claim to properly universal
significance. For no matter what revelation a Buddha or Mohammed might
bring, there are only two possibilities with reference to the universality of its
3 The following summary of von Balthasar's treatment of the one and the many is
from Hans Urs von Balthasar, The Glory of the Lord, Vol. I, Seeing the Form., trans.
Erasmo Leiva-Merikakis (San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 1982), pp. 496506.

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96

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truth. Either (a) the revelation is particular to those who receive it, thus lacking
in universality, or (b) the revelation is truly universal. If the latter, the character
of universality can only be derived from something itself universal, and hence
transcending the particularity of Buddha or Mohammed, in which case the particularity of the latter would be without universal significance.
Only the Christian doctrine of the Incarnation solves the dilemma. In von
Balthasar's words, Jesus Christ is the concrete universal, concrete in that He
is a particular person and universal in that He possesses the absolute universality of truth and goodness. By becoming flesh, He is as particular with respect to
time and place as any human person. In Jesus, the universal is concrete and
particular, and the particular is the universal. In possessing a human nature,
Jesus is no less human, and in possessing a divine nature, no less divine, as the
Council of Chalcedon made clear. He enters history at a particular place and
time, yet all historical norms are forever to be judged by him. He includes
within Himself all that is true, good and human, and is the concrete and universal norm by which truth, goodness and humanity are to be measured in all
times and places.
Two important conclusions emerge from this theological starting point that
are at the core of any attempt to formulate a political, economic and social
philosophy grounded in the person. First, the particular has the capacity to embody the universal; otherwise, the Incarnate Word Jesus would have been unable to embody God's universality. Moreover, the universal is encountered in
and through the particular. When this is first seen is in the Christian community. Each local community, gathered around the Eucharist, belongs to the universal Church precisely through being local. Members of the local community
deepen their participation in the universality of the church precisely through the
depth of their commitment to the local. The particularity of the local community is no obstacle to attaining the fullness of Christian life in all its dimensions. In fact, it is the route to universality.
In addition to revealing the capacity of the particular to embody the universal, the Incarnation also reveals the dignity of the human person as one having
the capacity to receive the fullness of divine life. So far elevated above the
material world and every institution composed by man, the human person, in
light of the Incarnation, can be nothing less than the principle of integration for
all social organization. The guiding principle is not that the person should detach himself from the local and the particular so as to become the best person
and citizen. Rather, it is only when the person unites with other particular persons, in politically, economically and socially viable communities, that the
common good of a nation can be realized. Only in concrete, local practices can
people realize the common good at the broadest level. It is through attachment
to the particular that universal values such as social justice become real. The

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Globalization, Religion, and Cultural Identity

97

challenge is to establish local institutions through which the depth and universality of the person can be expressed.
The strength of the incarnational perspective is that it accounts for the capacity of the particular to reflect the universal while avoiding the pitfall of seeking the universal abstracted from or in the absence of the particular. Affirming
the reality of universal values such as truth, rights and justice, it similarly
avoids exalting the particular at the expense of the universal. In the absence of
this incarnational perspective, either the universal or the particular will be
downplayed, ultimately obscuring both. Universality without particularity results in the centralization of political, economic and social power, resulting in
an authoritarianism or even totalitarianism that denies any significance to the
particular. The opposite error is to glorify the particular at the expense of the
universal. In its postmodernist extreme, such an approach denies even the existence of universals. Ultimately, difference itself becomes glorified as the overarching value. Such tendencies tend to undermine any assertion of authority,
being hyperlibertarian or anarchic in orientation.
It must be conceded that the argument here does indeed imply the social
acknowledgment of Christian influence. In the present time, such a claim will
inevitably be met at a minimum by charges of violating the separation between
church and state. At the rhetorical extreme will be the contention that the Taliban regime is returning, this time to conquer the Western democracies. Hysteria
aside, the relationship between Christian faith and Western democracy is generally misunderstood in our times, the entire subject distorted by ahistorical presuppositions negating the demonstrable connection between Christian thought
and the now widely recognized human values the faith introduced, most notably popular sovereignty, constitutional government and human rights. Prominent scholars such as John Rawls and Richard Rorty offer alternative approaches to democracy in radical opposition to the latter's historical bases, contending that the nature of democracy is the absence of a commonly held
morality believed to be binding for objective reasons.4 Such claims are in stark
contrast with the historical roots of both democracy and rights. Brian Tierney
has aptly demonstrated the roots of both in the Church, and that the culture out
of which Western notions of freedom, rights and constitutional government
emerged was decidedly rooted in the Catholic tradition and the objective sense
of morality associated with it.5 Natural law, as developed in the specifically
4 See, for example: John Rawls, Political Liberalism (New York: Columbia University Press, 1993); Richard Rorty, The Priority of Democracy to Philosophy, in: The
Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom, ed. Merrill D. Peterson and Robert C.
Vaughan (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1988).
5 See Brian Tierney, Religion, Law and the Growth of Constitutional Thought:
11501650 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press); The Idea of Natural Rights
(Atlanta: Scholars Press, 1997).

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98

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Christian context, is the foundation of Western democracy in that it established


the moral parameters to which the state itself was subject. This was the most
essential principle of limited government upon which the subsequent edifice
was erected. In the absence of natural law, restraints on government are left to
the vagaries of passing winds of political power. Indeed, political outcomes
themselves become the products of mere power, not principle, as a now
Nietzschean understanding of democracy comes to replace the Western. The
loss of the objective sense of moral values is in fact the cultural basis of totalitarianism. This truth, though lost on much of the intellectual class, has always
been well understood by tyrants who have always rejected the existence of any
set of values independent of their own judgments.
It is precisely Christianity's respect for reason that prompted it to make such
decisive contributions to human civilization. Rather than undermining reason,
faith promotes its legitimate autonomy while preserving its integrity, insisting
as well that reason respects its own limits and not absolutizes itself arbitrarily
and in ways contrary to reason's inherent limitations. That is why philosophy
prospered uniquely under Christian aegis, as did many profound human values
bequeathed to the age of faith by the best of pre-Christian civilizations, particularly those related to the social order. In fact, all dimensions of what today is
referred to as social justice, such as the preferential option for the poor and an
entire series of demands related to the dignity of the worker, are rooted historically in a distinctly Christian anthropology.
Of particular concern today is the entire area of freedom of conscience,
rightly emphasized today. Nonetheless, it must be conceded from the beginning
that no society has nor will permit unlimited freedom. In the practical order,
freedom always co-exists with some notion and practice of social order that
excludes behaviors antithetical to it. There never has been, is or will be a state
governed by ethical neutrality, for such does not exist in the practical order
of politics. All states insofar as they intend to remain states, enforce some kind
of order against their opposites. Nevertheless, the Church does insist today on
the freedom of conscience, which is a profoundly different thing. It is the very
nature of a person as free to seek the truth and to adhere to it when found,
including the truth about God. Religion can only be authentic in a climate of
such freedom. This was stated clearly at the Second Vatican Council, where the
bishops wrote: This freedom means that all [people] are to be immune from
coercion on the part of individuals and of social groups and of any human
power, in such wise that no one is to be forced to act in a manner contrary to
his own beliefs, whether privately or publicly, whether alone or in association
with others, within due limits.6 More recently, John Paul II has emphasized
that to act in accord with one's conscience and to discharge that conscience are
6

Vatican Council II, Dignitatis Humanae, no. 2.

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Globalization, Religion, and Cultural Identity

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rights of citizenship which cannot be taken away without doing grave violence
to the human person.7
The common good as understood by the Christian tradition does mandate
dialog among religions today. The unity of human personhood cannot be realized without the creation of profound human bonds that transcend all differences including religious ones. Authentic interreligious dialog is necessary because the world's social problems, most notably hunger, poverty and oppression, bear on the conscience of all. The followers of no one religion today can
solve them. Moreover, religions must work together to defend the common human values they share, most notably to the provisions of the natural moral order. They must work together against gross abuses of human dignity such as
abortion, child prostitution and slave labor. In addition, interreligious dialog can
actually deepen one's own faith. The exigencies of time, place and culture have
a way of modifying religion in ways inconsistent with the faith's deeper meaning. For example, Christianity in the United States is badly out of touch with
both its contemplative roots and its sense of the awesome transcendence of
God. Dialog with Buddhism and Islam can help to revivify dimensions of the
faith that may be obscured. Finally, interreligious dialog is crucial in our time
for the promotion of peace and justice. It is simply not possible for any one
religion to bring about these ends today. They must collaborate. It is a misapprehension of Christianity to allow concerns over evangelization to interfere
with the call to solidarity; all such reservations are the result of a misapprehension of the meaning of the Incarnation. Belief in Christ is belief in His mission,
which includes within it the affirmation of all human goods. These are to be
vigorously pursued on behalf of all in union with all people of good will. As
the most profound repositories of human values, religions can and must be on
the forefront of the promotion of peace, historical failures notwithstanding. The
more profound religious traditions recognize with Christianity that peace is
more than a simple ceasefire or a balance of power. They understand that both
war and peace begin in the depths of the human person and radiate outward
from there. Moreover, without the broader set of human values and moral strictures religions provide, no authentic peace is possible.8
III. False Solutions: Multiculturalism and Postmodernism
In the contemporary intellectual milieu, it has become popular to link globalization with a putatively progressive cultural process in which traditional national cultures surrender their sovereignty to a new pluralism of cultures, a proJohn Paul II, Redemptor Hominis, no. 17.
The foregoing summary of the benefits of interreligious dialog is taken from Cardinal Francis Arinze, Meeting Other Believers: The Risks and Rewards of Interreligious Dialog (Huntington: Our Sunday Visitor, 1997).
7
8

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cess at once national and global. This prescription is usually accompanied by a


barrage of indictments against the traditional cultures of the West, charges that
they are based simply on political, economic and cultural structures of domination imposed by force. The one of traditional cultural patterns is now to give
way to the many of previously suppressed or subjugated cultural expressions.
As in the history of the West there are obviously many examples of imperialism, domination and the refusal of rights to minorities, the series of charges
made against tradition can be made to appear quite convincing, as though the
elimination of tradition will issue in a great victory for democracy and minority
rights.
The insurmountable flaw with multiculturalism and postmodernism is that,
when taken to their logical ends, they ceaselessly propose pluralism as the prescription for the problems pluralism itself creates. First and foremost, in the
practical order of politics, as previously mentioned, there is no such thing as a
many without a one. Conflicts among cultural groups, if not resolved by mutual
agreement, require an authoritative solution. Every state, unless it is descending
into anarchy, in fact provides such solutions. All cultural debates that become
politicized are resolved one way or the other, in favor of some point of view
that becomes embodied in the law. One may choose to term such resolutions
victories for multiculturalism, but they never in fact are if multiculturalism
means the co-existence without suppression of divergent points of view. This is
particularly true of the life issues, such as abortion, cloning, and one form or
another of euthanasia. No resolution of any question in these areas has ever
favored the pro-life and anti-life forces equally. Each decision represents a
move in one of two incompatible directions. Thus it has always been, and so it
will always be.
Above and beyond the philosophical problems which arise whenever one negates the necessary social function of political authority, multicultural and postmodern views of globalization fail to take sufficient account of the extent to
which globalization is in fact an enormous centralization of political, economic
and cultural power. As mentioned at the outset, globalization is a process by
which international capital has greatly expanded its reach at the expense of the
traditional strictures imposed by the nation-state. With the creation of the World
Trade Organization and free-trade agreements such as NAFTA, nations find
themselves ever more frequently subject to lawsuits simply for trying to impose
common sense regulations. Unfortunately, in the brave new world of globalization, provisions of law are now in place that permit corporations to seek legal
redress for regulatory activity that threatens their profitability. The long-term
goal of international capital is, simply put, to have access to all of the world's
resources and all of the world's markets, and they are in a position to threaten
governments that stand in the way. Through such mechanisms, the very meaning of national sovereignty is being placed into question. The fact that these

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developments are not more widely known is tribute to the poor role the media
play in diffusing such information. Rarely are cases brought before the World
Trade Organization or the NAFTA tribunal given considerable media attention.9
On a much larger scale is the wholesale loss of sovereignty of nations who live
under the conditions imposed by the International Monetary Fund and the
World Bank. As a condition for renegotiating their huge external debt, these
nations are forced to pursue policies which encourage the opening of their borders to further encroachment by the multinationals, the sale of national assets to
the same, devaluations of national currencies which destroy the life savings of
millions of people, the elimination of food subsidies for the poor, and the cutting of social spending. Admittedly, the problem of Third World debt cannot be
limited to a critique of these institutions. Moreover, in many cases, it is true
that governments had indeed mishandled the national economy. Nonetheless,
when nations can no longer pursue their own development policies, but are simply forced to comply with the dictates of creditors, a significant degree of sovereignty has been compromised. In the final analysis, an honest look at globalization reveals that power is being concentrated globally in the hands of capital, particularly finance capital, and that the entire economic, political and
cultural order is being forced to adapt. On the surface, as global cultural products such as music reflect an increasing diversity of sources, it can be made to
appear that minority cultures are getting more recognition and respect. However, underneath the surface, cultures are increasingly forced to conform to the
consumerist norms of the global marketplace. In one sense, global capital is
indifferent to culture; it cares not what cultural products it sells so long as they
are profitable. Yet, at a deeper level, the process itself marginalizes cultures
that would tend to resist the logic of the priority of profit, consumerism and
materialism. I would like, therefore, to suggest that the actual model of cultural
globalization is to appropriate diversity at the empirical level while evacuating
traditional cultures of their deepest content and essence. The content of global
cultural products are, at their deepest level, hostile to the moral traditions of the
various nations. A new form of bigotry now replaces the old. Whereas the bigot
of old hated someone simply because he was black, or Italian, or Catholic, today's bigotry rejects such approaches. The old bigotry would tend to curtail the
free market and the opportunities to make money. Today, the modern business
corporation is happy to hire anyone and to sell to anyone. However, this means
conformity with the materialist, consumerist and anti-traditional elements of the
modern marketplace. Ultimately, people of different skin tones and national origins attend the multicultural ball, but they all think like white liberals; those
who defend tradition against the logic of the contemporary market are excluded.
9 For a disturbing account of the ways these cases threaten national sovereignty,
see Jim Hightower, If the Gods Had Meant Us to Vote, They Would Have Given Us
Candidates (New York: Harper Collins, 2001), pp. 355367.

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Among the best hopes for reversing these trends would indeed be a revitalization of cultural traditions. The prospects, however, are dimmed by the fact
that the global cultural industries inevitably undermine any kind of serious cultural reform, promoting materialism, utilitarianism and consumerism. If the process of cultural restoration is one that takes time, then we have good reason to
believe that the cultural industries undermine culture. All of the available evidence confirms this. For example, if we turn to a community that has a serious
cultural tradition it could conceivably revive the Catholic community in the
United States, for instance the typical Catholic family spends twenty to
twenty-five hours per week watching television. Only three per cent of registered Catholics spend a similar amount of time in a month on religious activities outside of Sunday Mass. Most Catholics read no books to develop their
knowledge of their faith or its history. The little they do know is mediated
through the mass media. Moreover, the culture industries themselves impede
the creation of a context within which the Catholic tradition might be appropriated. In the long run, most Catholics will cease even to recognize their own
tradition. As Michael Budde writes of a Christian population that relies on the
media for its knowledge of Christianity, Were television to decontextualize
baseball the way it decontextualizes Christianity presenting nothing but
dropped third strikes and arguments about the designated-hitter rule baseball
would become unrecognizable (especially if people invested as little time actually paying baseball as they do involved in religiously formative practices).
Third, the culture industries create serious obstacles to any serious thought, due
to the obsession they create with speed, instant gratification and sensory inputs.
Finally, the industries are symbolic predators, exploiting cultural imagery for
commercial purposes, hijacking the meaning of religious symbols along the
way. Consider that for many young people the only image that they have of
Western monasticism is from commercials designed to sell copy machines and
computers. Themes such as faith, conversion, and universal brotherhood have
been hijacked for primarily commercial purposes. I'd like to buy the world a
Coke, replaces the substance of solidarity. In a broader context of the failure
to transmit culture, such practices render cultural transformation difficult.
The centralization of power in the most powerful of the nation-states, acting
in conjunction with the largest concentrations of capital, raises concerns of a
moral and cultural nature that are particularly alarming. Surely, the centralization of power is an issue as old as politics itself, and from this perspective we
are tempted to see nothing new in globalization. However, today, the centralization of power is accompanied by a declining sense of personal responsibility for
its use. In the past, it was easier to identify centralization as an explicitly and
uniquely political issue. In the ancient tyrannies and in modern totalitarianisms,
everyone knew that power was not with the people and had gravitated to the
governing personnel. Today, by way of contrast, the concentrated power is

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more distinctly impersonal in that it is harder and harder to identify which particular persons have it. This is significantly the result of technological development. Fascinated by its capacities, the modern world organizes life around
it. This is most obvious in the economic organization of society, wherein
the quantity and quality of human work is increasingly determined by ever-advancing technological capacities. Secondly, there is the utilitarian ethos, which
deems the good to be the useful; from the standpoint of the powerful economic interests, what is useful is more profit. Third, accompanying the declining accountability in democracy is the sense that democracy is a mere process.
Societies lose the sense of the common good as a substantive set of human
goods to be achieved through common effort and distributed to all members
through the agency of accountable authority. To make matters worse, one of
the most important of these procedures is that elected officials rely on and pass
off responsibility to unelected experts in an expanding bureaucracy. Each of
these trends illustrates the larger concern: the concentration of power away
from the hands of the people accompanied by a decreasing sense of personal
responsibility for its use. To divorce power from people in this way will ultimately undermine the notion of personal responsibility itself. Theologian Romano Guardini summed up the trend well when he wrote: There is a fateful
inclination to use power ever more completely, both scientifically and technically, yet not to acknowledge it, preferring to hide it behind aspects of utility,'
welfare,' progress,' and so forth. This is one reason why man governs without
a corresponding ethos of government. Thus power has come to be exercised in
a manner that is not ethically determined; the most telling example of this is
the modern business corporation. As a result, contemporary man rightly feels
more than ever vulnerable to domination by an autonomous technological, economic and political power external to him. Guardini notes that power acquires
characteristics only Revelation can interpret. Modern man no longer feels that
he, personally, is acting; that since the act originates with him he is responsible
for it. He feels, rather, like one element in a chain of events. As the situation is the same with others, there is a growing sense of there being no one at
all who acts, only [an] intangible, invisible, indefinable something which derides questioning. The vacuum created by the loss of personhood, does not,
however, remain. The emptiness is succeeded by a faithlessness which hardens
into an attitude, and into this no man's land stalks another initiative, the demonic.10
Hans Urs von Balthasar similarly refers to the demonic element in the contemporary processes by which power is centralized without a corresponding
sense of morality. Wherever modern technological civilization penetrates . . . it
10 Romano Guardini, Power and Responsibility (New York: Sheed and Ward,
1957), pp. 78, 1415.

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also infuses a post-Christian, secular, atheistic consciousness as well. This is


partially due to the technological developments themselves. As von Balthasar
puts it, these new fetishes cast a previously unknown spell precisely because
they are manipulable. Initially, the modern notion of progress referred only to
the improvement of technology as a means to better the quality of the instruments used to serve him. Over time, however, technological developments
came to occupy center stage, and the dignity of the person was sacrificed to it.
What undergirds the process is, again, the separation of power from the person.
Von Balthasar states unequivocally that such power is simply evil. Echoing
Guardini, he acknowledges that its exercise is hidden. This technocracy, he
writes, this manipulation of things and of man (who has himself become a
thing) can no longer be recognized as a phenomenon originating in power. For
it is characteristic of the resultant manipulation that it does not actually apply
force, nor does it confront man openly in the form of coercion; he is subject to
it without violence and without external conflict. In contrast to all relationships
based on power, modern manipulation simply ignores the aspect of free will in
man; thus it pursues a quasi-anonymous annihilation of personal existence that
is even more radical than that undertaken by force. This is what makes the
modern technocracies . . . much more menacing.11
In addition to the failures of multiculturalism and postmodernism to capture
the reality of globalization as a process of centralization, these ideologies fail as
well philosophically. As William Cavanaugh has well explained it, the attempt
to glorify a certain kind of anti-traditional diversity is an attempt to replace the
one western culture by the many, that is, a diversity of cultures. However,
in the process, each culture is eviscerated of any universal significance. Indeed,
the willingness on the part of a culture to gain acceptance in the multicultural
club is precisely to grant this concession. The fear of the multiculturalist is that
any assertion of a universal significance on the part of any particular culture
implies a denigration of all the others. Therefore, multiculturalism is implicitly
a mandate that each culture consents to the withering effects of moral and cultural relativism, materialism, consumerism and the individualism of the market.
In the final analysis, multiculturalism is really a misnomer in that there is a
dominant culture being ushered in the back door as Western culture is being
unceremoniously thrown out the front. The new culture which is emerging is
grounded in a relativism hostile to any culture which insists on its universal
significance, particularly when said culture insists on moral absolutes in the
form of divine or natural law. There is thus a world of difference in the reception offered to a Latin American willing to renounce constitutive features of his
Catholicism and that offered to one who seeks to maintain the same features.
11 Hans Urs von Balthasar, Theo-Drama: Theological Dramatic Theory, Vol. IV:
The Action (San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 1994), pp. 65, 159.

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Globalization, Religion, and Cultural Identity

105

Similarly, African-Americans who promote and accept multiculturalism are accepted, while those who support the pro-life movement and mention the need to
recuperate the African-American family are not; the latter are viewed as traitors
to their race by the white liberals who take it upon themselves to define beliefs
as authentically black. Multiculturalism is really multiethnicism amidst the
emerging monoculture that multiculturalism defines. Multiethnicism is important because it promotes the superficial aura of diversity upon which the political success of the movement depends. The substance of authentic cultural diversity, however, is being hollowed out. Wendell Berry remarks humorously concerning the hypocrisy that all of this leads to in the academy: Quit talking bad
about women, homosexuals and preferred social minorities, and you can say
anything you want about people who have not been to college, manual workers,
country people, peasants, religious people, unmodern people . . . and so on.12
John Francis Burke, in his book, Mestizo Democracy: The Politics of Crossing Borders, does an excellent job in demonstrating the possibilities for intercultural collaboration in the political and cultural orders.13 Burke is aware that
endless appeals to diversity and pluralism do not solve the problems of cultural
diversity and conflict. He proposes a model of unity-in-diversity based on the
experience of Mexicans living in the Southwestern United States. He argues
that what has taken place there traditionally is a mestizaje, that is, a mingling
of cultures without either one being dominant. One culture learns and borrows
from the other and both are transformed in the process. To cite another example
from a different context, we know that untouchables in India drew upon principles of British law to transform attitudes in Indian culture. Burke has highlighted a process that holds out much hope for intercultural cooperation and
mutual transformation. However, I would contend that the mestizaje model is
not of universal applicability; it works best in cases where there are underlying
similarities. For example, a mestizaje occurred in the Southwest because despite
the prejudices and historical conflicts, both cultures were influenced deeply by
Christianity. On most moral issues, the cultures were more similar than different. Where mestizaje will not work is when the cultures are indeed mutually
incompatible. We are reminded in such cases of Abraham Lincoln's famous
words concerning the struggle between slavery and freedom: A house divided
against itself cannot stand. The culture of life and the culture of death cannot
ultimately mix and merge. One will eventually destroy the other.
A particular kind of multiculturalism is in evidence in the move toward religious pluralism endorsed by many theologians today. It goes far beyond my
12 Wendell Berry, Sex, Economy, Freedom and Community (New York and San
Francisco: Pantheon Books, 1992), p. xv.
13 John Francis Burke, Mestizo Democracy: The Politics of Crossing Borders (College Station: Texas A & M University Press, 2003).

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106

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earlier insistence on the need for interreligious dialog by proposing a pluralist


approach that allegedly maintains the integrity of various religious traditions
while purifying them of intolerance. Exclusivism, or the insistence on the
universality of one's particular faith, must be rejected.14 According to John
Knitter, the Divine mystery is ever greater than the reality and message of
Jesus. This Mystery transcends Christianity and all other faiths. Subordinate to
this Mystery, all the religions could be, perhaps need to be included in that
is, related to each other as all of them continue their efforts to be faithful to
inexhaustible Mystery or Truth. The Christian Word is incomplete without the
other words. Moreover, the former is not even accessible without the latter, as
texts can only be understood within the framework of historical life-practice
which transcend the boundaries of any particular religious expression. This approach goes beyond the simple assertion that there is a pluralist perspective
operating above Christianity and the other faiths. For Knitter, traditional theology . . . especially its christological base, served to cloak or condone an unconscious theological desire to maintain superiority . . . Moreover, belief in dogmas is historically associated with a range of other unacceptable behaviors such
as patriarchalism, traditional missionary efforts, and capitalism.15
The kind of religious pluralism advocated by Hick and Knitter involves the
assertion of an ultimate Truth or Mystery. Nonetheless, in the practical order,
the criticisms just made of multiculturalism retain all their force here. The celebration of pluralism comes at the price of denying universal significance to particular religious traditions. Religions are unique only in the sense that they have
different messengers and sacred texts, but not with respect to holding any truths
not held by other traditions, such a possibility being ruled out by the pluralist
premise that no particular tradition can have universal meaning inaccessible to
others. Truths congregate in the transcendent Truth that is beyond the reach of
any particular revelation, and it is to this Truth that the pluralists are committed. The commitment, however, is a peculiar one, in that it consists in
neither holding any particular belief nor embracing any religious practice as of
ultimate value. In practice, it can only be what Cavanaugh rightly characterizes
as a cosmopolitan detachment, a kind of religious tourism which, for its lack
of concrete commitment, inevitably encourages religious dilettantes more than
committed believers.16
A deeper look at the religious pluralist position reveals that it unwittingly
plays into the false anthropologies of consumerism and individualism that it
14 For an example of this approach, see John Hick and Paul Knitter (eds.), The
Myth of Christian Uniqueness (Maryknoll: Orbis Books; London: SCM, 1987).
15 Paul Knitter, Jesus and the Other Names: Christian Mission and Global Responsibility (Maryknoll: Orbis Books, 1996), pp. xiii, 9, 85, 158.
16 William Cavanaugh, Balthasar, Globalization, and the Problem of the one and
the Many, Communio, no. 28 (Summer 2001), p. 337.

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Globalization, Religion, and Cultural Identity

107

claims to oppose. For who precisely is it that stands above Judaism, Christianity, Islam and Buddhism, other than the I, the autonomous self of liberalism
who re-emerges here to assert again his sovereignty as the ultimate arbiter of
values. This I stands above and in judgment on the history and respective
merits of the various religious traditions. This I speaks for and represents the
transcendent Truth. This I, standing above the fray of religious difference,
is bound ultimately to his own moral, political and religious views. This is,
moreover, a particularly poor basis for solidarity. Specific commitments understood as having a religious basis are essential to keeping people and communities together. The I of the religious pluralist is ultimately the empty self of
liberalism trying to find himself by asserting his sovereignty over truth.
As Paul Griffiths has written, for all their emphasis on renouncing adherence
to the traditional dogmas of the various faiths, religious pluralists such as Hick
and Knitter do not for all that deny epistemological absolutism. Hick claims to
know with certitude that all purported differences among the various religious
traditions pertaining to matters of ultimate salvation are in fact misrepresentations. As most committed members of these traditions have actually had disagreements of this kind, they must all be wrong. As with other pluralists, Hick
is concerned that the traditional interpretations of the various religions, made by
the very members of those traditions, create the kinds of exclusivist attitudes
that the pluralists want to eliminate. Nonetheless, his own convictions are at
least as absolute as any so-called exclusivist. Hick claims to know that key
doctrines of various religions are false, and he knows this not by engaging the
arguments on their own terms, or considering the credibility of those who professed them. He is able to reject them simply because of an unclearly specified
connection between the belief and certain attitudes and behaviors deemed unacceptable.17
IV. Conclusion
This paper has considered the problem of cultural identity from a Christian
perspective, contending that it is only in the mystery of the Incarnation can the
relation between the one and the many be sorted out, and that the contemporary
ideologies of multiculturalism, pluralism and postmodernism are ultimately unable to give a coherent account of the one or the many, much less valid insight
into the contemporary processes which fall under the rubric of globalization.
By way of conclusion, I would like to suggest that the problem of national
identity addressed by this conference can hardly be addressed satisfactorily
17 Paul J. Griffiths, The Uniqueness of Christian Doctrine Defended, in: Gavin
D'Costa (ed.), Christian Uniqueness Reconsidered (Maryknoll: Orbis Books, 1990),
p. 161.

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108

Thomas R. Rourke

without recovering the sense of personal identity. Again, it is paradoxical that


in an age which has actually given birth to the term, identity politics, that it
can not give people any solid sense of their own personal identity, much less a
national one. I would like to close by following a point raised by the American
agrarian, Wendell Berry, who makes two relevant and interrelated points. First,
the morass into which all forms of cultural relativism have thrown us into prohibits from seeing the connections among all of our problems. The contemporary intellectual is not fond of referring to society as disintegrating. Rather, he
endlessly discusses the symptoms as though they had nothing to do with one
another: divorce, venereal disease, murder, rape, debt, bankruptcy, pornography, [environmental destruction,] teenage pregnancy, fatherless children,
motherless children, child suicide, public child-care . . . government lying,
government crime, civil violence, drug abuse, sexual promiscuity . . . the explosion of garbage, hopeless poverty, unemployment, unearned wealth.18 We tend
to conceive of these as separate, though all are the results of the depersonalizing tendencies of our political, economic and cultural life. Once the person
fragments, the fissure resounds throughout the social order.
One of the worst features of this fragmentation is the pervasive homelessness of the contemporary world. What I refer to here is only secondarily the
sad phenomenon of people who live without established residences. The history of our time, Berry writes, has been to a considerable extent the movement of the center of consciousness away from home. This movement to
which Berry refers is part of the larger process by which the center of Western
culture has moved away from the person. As power gravitates away from the
person to the new centers of political, economic and cultural power, man finds
himself correspondingly adrift. The homelessness to which I refer consists in
an abstract and mechanistic pattern of being, thinking, acting and producing
that makes human beings rootless, in a world stripped of its intrinsic creaturely
order. The result is that the contemporary successful person has only an abstract sense of where he is. For him, Geography is defined . . . by his house,
his office, his commuting route, and the interior of shopping centers, restaurants, and places of amusement which is to say that his geography is artificial; he could be anywhere, and he usually is. Berry refers to this contemporary person as a vagrant sovereign who does not know where he is morally
either. He is vagrant because his devotion to escape restraints and limits is
incompatible with the geographically specific, time-consuming limitations of
home life. As a successful man, he assumes that there is nothing he can do
which he should not, and that there is nothing he can use which he should
not.19

18

Wendell Berry, The Hidden Wound, p. 131.

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Globalization, Religion, and Cultural Identity

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Summary
What is known in scholarly and political circles as globalization is widely recognized as the wave carrying the world into the next epoch. The sociological weight of
academic and political opinion lies with the conviction that globalization is either the
solution to endemic problems of economic, political and cultural underdevelopment or
at least inevitable. Those holding the latter opinion, the less optimistic, are less sanguine about the prospects for globalization as a panacea for a multitude of social ills,
but nonetheless see no realistic alternative in the face of economic, political and cultural processes of such overwhelming force. The latter perception only heightens the
tendency to accept globalization as a given and proceed to examine how a given nation can best take advantage of the opportunities it provides. The proponents of globalization have the upper hand in political, economic and cultural spheres, despite the
fact that globalization clearly threatens national sovereignty, undermines traditional
methods of economic regulation on behalf of the common good, and renders political
authority weaker in the face of unprecedented accumulations of private power.

Zusammenfassung
Was in wissenschaftlichen und politischen Kreisen unter Globalisierung weithin verstanden wird, ist jene Wellenbewegung, die die Welt in ihre nchste Epoche vorantrgt. Das soziologische Gewicht der akademischen und politischen Meinung steht und
fllt mit der berzeugung, da die Globalisierung entweder die Lsung aller Probleme
der wirtschaftlichen, politischen und kulturellen Unterentwicklung ermglicht oder zumindest nicht vermeidbar ist. Jene, die die letztere weniger optimistische Ansicht vertreten, sind weniger zuversichtlich, was die Mglichkeiten der Globalisierung als eines
Allheilmittels fr eine Vielzahl von sozialen beln angeht, jedoch sehen sie keine
realistische Alternative angesichts der konomischen, politischen und kulturellen Prozesse von so ungeheuerer Gewalt. Die letztere Sicht erhht nur die Meinung, die Globalisierung als gegeben hinzunehmen und zu prfen, wie eine Nation die Vorteile, die
daraus erwachsen, bestmglich nutzen kann. Die Befrworter der Globalisierung haben einen bestimmenden Einflu in Politik, Wirtschaft und Kultur trotz der Tatsache,
da die Globalisierung die nationale Souvernitt bedroht, die traditionelle wirtschaftliche Ordnung im Sinne des Gemeinwohls unterhhlt und die politische Autoritt
schwcht angesichts einer nie dagewesenen Anhufung privater Macht.

19 Wendell Berry, The Unsettling of America (San Francisco: Sierra Club Publications, 1977), pp. 5354.

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Zwischen Projekt Weltethos


und The Clash of Civilizations
Religise Identitt im Zeitalter der Globalisierung
Von Richard Schenk
I. Zur Problemstellung
Seit der Verffentlichung von Hans Kngs Projekt Weltethos im Jahre
19901 und Samuel Huntingtons Aufsatz The Clash of Civilizations? in 19932
hat sich der Verlauf interkultureller Auseinandersetzungen in einer Weise verschrft, die heute die These weit weniger gewagt erscheinen lsst, der Weltfriede verlange auch den Frieden zwischen den Weltreligionen. Geradezu selbstverstndlich vielleicht nur scheinbar selbstverstndlich3 erscheint inzwischen auch jene Doppelthese, die Kng damals mit dieser Verffentlichung zur
Begrndung seiner Bewerbung um Forschungsgelder fr das Projekt herangezogen hat: Der Religionsfriede verlange das Religionsgesprch, ein solches Gesprch verlange aber seinerseits die Grundlagenforschung, um zu klren, was
ein Religionsgesprch sein knnte und sein sollte. Gerade deswegen berrascht
es um so mehr, wenn, wie es scheint, bei der Ausarbeitung dieser Grundlagen
bis heute kaum Fortschritte gemacht worden sind. Die beiden genannten Publikationen reichen aber bereits dazu aus, um deutlich zu machen, dass die Grundlagenforschung zum Religionsfrieden und Religionsgesprch heute wesentlich
mit dem Thema kultureller Identitt im Zeitalter der Globalisierung zu tun hat.
1 Piper, Mnchen/Zrich, im Folgenden zitiert nach der dritten Auflage von 1991.
Es bleibt auerhalb des Themas dieses Aufsatzes, den Bezug von Huntingtons berlegungen oder Kngs globalem Projekt zu partikulren Marktinteressen zu untersuchen, obwohl dies gerade von Kng stark herausgestellt wird.
2 Im Folgenden wird auf die erweiterte Buchfassung verwiesen, deren Titel inzwischen auf das Fragezeichen des Aufsatzes verzichten konnte: Samuel P. Huntington,
The Clash of Civilizations. Remaking the World Order (zuerst 1996, hier nach der ersten Ausgabe bei Touchstone, New York 1997).
3 Zur Untersttzung seines Forschungsprojekts wiederholt Hans Kng eher plakativ
als argumentativ mehrfach die Kette von angeblich notwendigen, wenn nicht sogar als
hinreichend unterstellten Bedingungen. Vgl. dazu die scharfsinnige Analyse von Robert Spaemann, Weltethos als Projekt, zuerst 1996 in: Merkur, hier nach Robert
Spaemann, Grenzen. Zur ethischen Dimension des Handelns (Klett-Cotta, 2. Auflage,
Stuttgart 2002), S. 525538, besonders S. 525531.

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112

Richard Schenk

Die beiden Werke knnten zunchst als bloe Gegenpole zueinander erscheinen. Kngs Projekt mchte den Projektleiter als verhltnismig ehrlichen Makler im politischen, konomischen und ideologischen Wettstreit zugunsten der
Artikulierung gemeinsamer Grundwerte empfehlen. Huntingtons Werk legt dem
Westen nahe, sich strker als bedrohten Konkurrenten wahrzunehmen, der, um
zu berleben, rasch wieder Partei ergreifen solle. Whrend Kng den Beitrag
der von den richtigen Managern kontrollierten Religionen in der Strkung des
Gemeinsamen sucht, erwartet Huntington von den nicht zu einenden Religionen
eine Strkung der je eigenen Kulturen und Zivilisationen. Die Vereinzelung der
Kulturen durch verschiedene Religionen kann nach Huntington gewaltsteigernd
wirken, eine globalisierte Vereinheitlichung dagegen, wrde sie erfolgen, msste
aber so wirken. Some Americans have promoted multiculturalism at home;
some have promoted universalism abroad; and some have done both. Multiculturalism at home threatens the United States and the West; universalism abroad
threatens the West and the world4.
Trotz solcher Gegenstze zeigen die beiden Verffentlichungen auch durchaus Parallelen. Huntington greift die Analyse Michael Walzers5 auf, um im Bereich moralischer Vorstellungen zwischen weitgehenden oder dicken Gemeinsamkeiten einerseits (im Sprachgebrauch Huntingtons: universals) und andererseits blo grundstzlichen oder dnnen Gemeinsamkeiten (die Huntington
commonalities nennt) zu unterscheiden. Walzer zitierend und zugleich ber
ihn hinausgehend unterstreicht Huntington den eher prohibitiven Charakter dnner Vorstellungen moralischer Art:
Minimal moral concepts of truth and justice are found in all thick moralities and
cannot be divorced from them. There are also minimal moral negative injunctions,
most likely, rules against murder, deceit, torture, oppression, and tyranny. What
people have in common is more the sense of a common enemy [or evil] than the
commitment to a common culture. . . . Instead of promoting the universal features
of one civilization, the requisites for cultural coexistence demand a search for what
is common to most civilizations.6

Huntington gibt zu, dass die Anerkennung dnner Gemeinsamkeiten die je


einzelnen Zivilisationen noch etwas zivilisierter machen knnte. In diesem Sinn
kann Huntington dnne Gemeinsamkeiten im gleichen Atemzug fordern, wie
er einen dicken Universalismus zurckweist: In a multicivilizational world,
the constructive course is to renounce universalism, accept diversity, and seek
Clash, a. a. O., S. 318.
Michael Walzer, Thick and Thin. Moral Argument at Home and Abroad (Notre
Dame University Press 1994); fr Walzers Stellungnahme zum Projekt Weltethos vgl.
seinen Beitrag, Zur Erfahrung von Universalitt, in: Karl-Josef Kuschel et al. (Hrsg.),
Ein Ethos fr die Welt? Globalisierung als ethische Herausforderung (Campus, Frankfurt 1999), S. 3847.
6 Clash, a. a. O., S. 318.
4
5

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Zwischen Projekt Weltethos und The Clash of Civilizations

113

commonalities7. Mag es auch zutreffen, dass jene Grundwerte, die etwa am


Ende der Jubilumskonferenz der Weltreligionen in Chicago i. J. 1993 allgemeine Anerkennung fanden, noch dnner und weniger kontrovers, daher auch
weit weniger aussagekrftig oder konstruktiv ausgefallen waren, als es selbst
dem Organisator der Veranstaltung lieb war8, so drfte auch nicht bersehen
werden, dass Kng von vornherein schon bei der Projektbeschreibung sich gegen eine Einheitsreligion oder eine totale Konvergenz im kulturellen Ethos ausgesprochen hat. Auch nach ihm drfte die durch das Projekt angestrebte Gemeinsamkeit der Grundwerte nicht zu dick ausfallen. Die Grnde dafr mgen genauso verengt pragmatisch und unter der typisch modernen Herrschaft
instrumenteller Vernunft konzipiert sein9, wie bei S. Huntingtons uerungen
zur Religionsproblematik, doch hatte Kng im Gegensatz zum anderen Autor
seine Religionsanalyse zuvor im Kontext zweier Debatten ausgearbeitet, die in
der fachtheologischen Diskussion gelufig waren: das Problem des interreligisen Dialogs und die Popularisierung des theologischen Postmodernismus. Um
Kngs Bedeutung fr das Thema Identitt und Globalisierung richtig einschtzen zu knnen, muss nach diesem zweifachen theologischen Kontext des von
ihm betriebenen globalen Ethos gefragt werden.
II. Von der kumene zur pluralistischen Religionstheologie
In den letzten beiden Jahrzehnten des 20. Jahrhunderts vollzog sich rasch die
Entstehung, Artikulierung, interne Ausdifferenzierung und allmhlich auch die
angemessene Problematisierung der sogenannten pluralistischen Religionstheologie christlicher Provenienz. Ihren Ursprung hatte sie zum Teil in der Einsicht
in die nicht zu leugnenden Schwchen lterer und jngerer Theorien interreligiser Relationalitt, die von einem historisch unschuldigen Verstndnis des
Axioms extra ecclesiam nulla salus bis hin zu Karl Rahners Kernthese vom
anonymen Christen gereicht hatten. Sein begriffliches Instrumentarium gewann der Religionspluralismus durch jene Dreiteilung religionstheologischer
Modelle in Exklusivismus, Inklusivismus und Pluralismus, die seit etwa 1983
im Umkreis des englischen Religionspluralisten John Hick entwickelt und seitdem in der Diskussion allgemein rezipiert wurde10. Obwohl mit aufflliger Verzgerung in Deutschland rezipiert11, gab John Hick dem englischsprachigen ReEbd.
Vgl. Hans Kng und Karl-Josef Kuschel (Hrsg.), A Global Ethic: The Declaration
of the Parliament of the World's Religions (New York, Continuum, 1993).
9 Die Grenzen der funktionalistischen Deutung des Religionsgesprchs aufzuweisen, ist das Hauptverdienst von Spaemann, Weltethos als Projekt, a. a. O.
10 Vgl. Perry Schmidt-Leukel, Zur Klassifikation religionstheologischer Modelle,
in: Catholica, 47 (1993), S. 163183. Auer auf John Hick wird auf seine beiden
Schler Alan Race und Gavin D'Costa hingewiesen: a. a. O., S. 165 f.
7
8

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Richard Schenk

ligionspluralismus in der ersten Phase dieser Epoche seine eigene Prgung12. Im


nachhinein erscheint Hicks Modell des Religionspluralismus als die am wenigsten pluralistische oder postmoderne Spezies der pluralistischen Gattung. Es
erinnert vielmehr an den Entwurf des frhen Lessing, wonach zwar konkret
geschichtliche Religionen nie absolut zu bejahen seien, wohl aber die ihnen
transzendente, geschichtsjenseitige natrliche Religion, auf die sie alle gleichermaen hinsteuern. Hick verbindet einen Skeptizismus in Bezug auf die inhaltliche Lehre jeder konkreten Religion mit der berraschenden Zuversicht, im
Vergleich der groen und alten Religionen feststellen zu knnen, dass sie alle
im gleichen Ma dasselbe tun, nmlich zu einer moralisierten Verwandlung des
Menschen von Ich-Bezogenheit zur Realittsbezogenheit beitragen , und zwar
in hherem Mae, als dies der atheistische Humanismus zu tun vermag. Sind
Hicks Schriften auch sonst von einem merklichen Hang zur Univozitt des Entweder-oder geprgt (die sich z. B. mit der geschichtlichen Entwicklung einer
trotz Wandels identischen Idee besonders schwertut), so sind hier alle groen
und alten Religionen gleich in Ziel, Dynamik, letzter Leistungsfhigkeit und
ethischer Strahlkraft.
Wie zu Beginn des 19. Jahrhunderts die Kritik Schleiermachers die moralische Reduktion der Religion in Frage stellte, so blieb auch hier die Reaktion
nicht lange aus. Bald wenn auch oft nur stereotyp wurde auf die tiefgehende Verschiedenheit der Religionen hingewiesen und auf die Unmglichkeit,
sie miteinander gleichzusetzen oder auch nur Einzelphnomene am einheitlichen ethischen Mastab zu vergleichen. Begann diese Feststellung einer gewissen Inkommensurabilitt zwischen den Religionen zunchst einfach in unmittelbarer Nhe zum Befund der Religionswissenschaft und als realittsnahe Reaktion zu der im Geist neuzeitlicher Moralisierung betriebenen Vereinheitlichung
und Instrumentalisierung aller Religionen13, so wurde die Betonung der Unvergleichbarkeit der Religionen bald prinzipiell. Mit Blick auf die Grundlagen des
11 Im katholischen Milieu des deutschsprachigen Raums wurde Hicks Modell des
Religionspluralismus energisch verteidigt von Perry Schmidt-Leukel, Theologie der
Religionen. Probleme, Optionen, Argumente (Neuried, ars una 1997); vgl. dazu Richard Schenk, In universum mundum. Das Zeugnis des Evangeliums im Zeitalter
pluralistischer Religionstheorien, in: W. Schreer und G. Steins (Hrsg.), Auf neue Art
Kirche sein. Wirklichkeiten Herausforderungen Wandlungen (Festschrift Josef
Homeyer), Mnchen, Don Bosco 1999, S. 507523; und ders., Debatable Ambiguity:
Paradigms of Truth as a Measure of the Differences among Christian Theologies of
Religion, in: ders., V. Hoesle und P. Koslowski (Hrsg.), Jahrbuch fr Philosophie des
Forschungsinstituts fr Philosophie Hannover, Vol. 11, 2000 (Wien, Passagen 2000),
S. 121151.
12 Vgl. John Hick und Paul F. Knitter, The Myth of Christian Uniqueness: Toward
a Pluralistic Theology of Religions (Maryknoll, N.Y., Orbis Books, 1987).
13 Vgl. John B. Cobb, Beyond Pluralism, in: G. D'Costa (Hrsg.), Christian Uniqueness Reconsidered. The Myth of a Pluralistic Theology of Religions (Maryknoll,
N.Y., 1990), S. 8195.

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Religionsgesprchs wurde sogar geleugnet, dass die Wahrheit diesseits oder


jenseits menschlicher Endlichkeit einheitlich oder bestimmbar sei14. Nicht nur
die funktionale Gleichartigkeit aller Religionen, sondern selbst die Mglichkeit
univoker Wahrheit wurde zurckgewiesen. So leugnet beispielsweise Leonard
Swidler (Temple University)15 die Vorstellung und die metaphysische Mglichkeit einheitlicher Letztwahrheit oder Letztwirklichkeit. Er verwirft den exklusivistischen oder aristotelischen Wahrheitsbegriff, der sich am Widerspruchsprinzip und am Entweder-oder orientiere und somit auch das Grundbel des
inklusivistischen Relationsmodells sei16. Swidler zieht die Konsequenz fr eine
umfassende Deabsolutierung nicht nur des Christentums, sondern auch des
Wahrheitsbegriffs: deabsolutiert erscheine die Wahrheit heute angesichts der
berzeugung von Historizismus, kontextueller Intentionalitt, soziologisch-kultureller Bedingtheit, sprachanalytisch verstandener Regionalitt, subjektivistischer Hermeneutik und dem jedem echten Dialog vorgegebenen Verstehenshorizont. Wahrheit werde nur mehr relational, kontextuell, perspektivisch, interpretativ, eben dialogisch verstanden17. Hatte Hick die Religionen mit einer fr die
Neuzeit charakteristischen instrumentellen Vernunft moralistisch betrachtet, so
erkannte z. B. Raimon Panikkar folgerichtig, dass seine vom Hinduismus mitinspirierte, mystifizierende Deutung der Religionen auerstande sei, sich selbst
oder irgendeinen politisch-moralischen Kurs als ein Sollen zu empfehlen18. Der
Pluralismus wurde damit erst prinzipiell pluralistisch: in Bezug auf die Wahrheit wie auf die Moral.
Hatten sich diese beiden ersten Unterarten des Religionspluralismus als im
Dienst einer greren Anerkennung nichtchristlicher Religionen und der Bedeu14 Vgl. zu Beginn der 90er Jahre etwa Leonard Swidler, After the Absolute. The
Dialogical Future of Religious Reflection (1990).
15 Vgl. Leonard Swidler (Hrsg.), Towards a Universal Theology of Religion, New
York 1987; L. Swidler, A Dialogue on Dialogue, in: L. Swidler u. a. (Hrsg.), Death or
Dialogue? From the Age of Monologue to the Age of Dialogue, London, Philadelphia
1990, S. 5678; vgl. auch den aus der Chicago-Schule kommenden, um die Zuordnung von Rationality, Irrationality, and Other-Rationality bemhten David J. Krieger,
The New Universalism. Foundations for a Global Theology, New York 1991.
16 Leonard Swidler, After the Absolute, a. a. O., S. 7 ff.; Paul F. Knitter, No Other
Name?, a. a. O., S. 217 ff.
17 Leonard Swidler, After the Absolute, a. a. O.; vgl. David Lochhead, The Dialogical Imperative. A Christian Reflection on Interfaith Encounter, London 1988.
18 Vgl. R. Panikkar, The Jordan, the Tiber, and the Ganges. Three Kairological Moments of Christic Self-Consciousness, in: Hick und Knitter, The Myth of Christian
Uniqueness, a. a. O., S. 89116, etwa S. 113; ders., The Cosmotheandric Experience:
Emerging Religious Consciousness (Maryknoll, Orbis 1993); weniger folgerichtig und
zumeist weniger problembewusst erscheint ders., Cultural Disarmament. The Way to
Peace (Louisville, Westminster/Knox 1993); vgl. aber die Anzeichen eines Wandels in
ders., The Myth of Peace, und, Evolutionist Cosmology, ebd., 36 resp. 8992, sowie
ders., A Self-critical Dialogue, in: Joseph Prabhu (Hrsg.), The Intercultural Challenge
of Raimon Panikkar (Maryknoll, Orbis 1996), S. 227291.

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116

Richard Schenk

tung des Religionsgesprchs verstanden, so wurde aber bald offenkundig, dass


keine der beiden Entwrfe imstande war, der Identitt der Religionen gerecht
oder dem Religionsdialog auf Dauer frderlich zu sein. Es wurde deutlich, dass
die Anerkennung von Identitt das Zugestndnis von Eigenstand und Geltung
vor anderen verlangt. Hicks Modell rumte einzelnen Religionen zwar Geltung
ein, wenngleich auf einen engen Funktionalismus reduziert; damit ging aber
vom Eigenstand und Selbstverstndnis der Religionen Wesentliches verloren.
Das eigene System der Religionsdeutung drohte, selbst als die einzig eigenstndige und lebensfhige und zwar superioristische Religion Geltung beanspruchen zu knnen; wodurch die Notwendigkeit des Religionsvergleichs von
neuem beginnen msste. Das Modell L. Swidlers und R. Panikkars rumte hingegen zwar einzelnen Religionen Eigenstand ein, aber eine Monadologie ohne
prstabilierte Harmonie besiegelt nur die Absurditt und Isolation der Religionen; die Geltung vor anderen ging verloren und damit doch auch ihre Identitt. In beiden Fllen war es kaum noch mglich, das Religionsgesprch sinnvoll
fortzusetzen.
Um den Dialog zwischen Religionen doch noch zu retten und zugleich ein
Urteil ber sie am Mastab ihres Beitrags zu Gerechtigkeit, Frieden und Bewahrung der Schpfung zu ermglichen, wurde alsbald ein dritter Typos des
Pluralismus entwickelt, der aber immer weniger nur aus pluralistischen Argumentationsstrngen gewoben ist. Wie Jrgen Moltmann feststellt: Im Forum
der bedrohten Welt werden darum diese Dialoge die Form der Disputation annehmen, die auf Entscheidung und reale Vernderung angelegt sind19. Auch
Paul Knitter, der zuerst enger Mitstreiter des Modells von Hick gewesen ist,
bevor er sich der mystisch-postmodernen Version zuwandte, rckt nun die Soteria zunehmend in die Mitte seiner berlegungen, aber, im Gegensatz zu
Hick, nicht primr in Bezug auf die inwendige Bekehrung zum Eschaton hin20.
Bei Knitter stehen vielmehr befreiungstheologische Motive im Vordergrund, die
sich an der zeitlichen Schonung von Mensch und Natur orientieren. Mit der
allmhlichen Aufwertung der Frage nach politischer Praxis verringert sich der
Hang zum Relativismus und zur unterschiedslosen Bejahung religiser Ansprche; denn nicht jede Praxis kann fr gleichermaen befreiend gehalten werden.
Wie Jrgen Werbick feststellte: Die pragmatische Zuspitzung der Pluralismus19 Jrgen Moltmann, Dient die pluralistische Theologie dem Dialog der Religionen?, in: Evangelische Theologie, 49 (1989), S. 528536, hier S. 536, leicht berarbeitet und bersetzt als: Is Pluralistic Theology Useful for the Dialogue of World Religions?, in: G. D'Costa (Hrsg.), Christian Uniqueness Reconsidered, a. a. O., S. 149
156.
20 Paul F. Knitter, Toward a Liberation Theology of Religions, in: P. F. Knitter und
J. Hick (Hrsg.), The Myth of Christian Uniqueness, a. a. O., S. 178202; Paul F. Knitter, Religionen und Befreiung. Soteriozentrismus als Antwort an die Kritiker, in: R.
Bernhardt (Hrsg.), Horizontberschreitung. Die Pluralistische Theologie der Religionen, Gtersloh 1991, S. 203219.

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these auf Soteriozentrismus und Orthopraxie nimmt dem Pluralismusproblem


seine theoretische und religise Schrfe; aber sie verkrzt es damit entscheidend21.
In seinem Projekt Weltethos von 1990 wie in seiner im Jahr zuvor verffentlichten Auseinandersetzung mit der mystischen Phase Paul Knitters22 entwickelt
H. Kng die Forderung nach einer Standfestigkeit der Dialogpartner, die dem
Eigenstand der verschiedenen Religionen mehr Rechnung tragen will als im
Modell J. Hicks, ohne aber wie im Modell R. Panikkars die einzelnen Religionen vor jedem Vergleich am Mastab politisch-moralischer Bewertung zu immunisieren. Die Vertreter verschiedener Religionen sollen zwar nicht dogmatisch den Wahrheitsanspruch der Glaubensinhalte bejahen, aber genauso wenig
sollen sie von vornherein sich dem pragmatischen Reduktionismus Hicks verschreiben. Mit diesem sich moderat gebrdenden Vorschlag handelte sich Kng
die erbitterte Kritik der Hick-Schule ein, er verwickle sich damit in Selbstwidersprche23, whrend Kng selbst in der Tat weit weniger als andere Mitstreiter dieser Richtung wie Langdon Gilkey (Chicago)24 die gedanklichen Spannungen in dieser dritten Spielart des Pluralismus zu erkennen scheint25. Kng
Jrgen Werbick, a. a. O., S. 28.
Hans Kng, Dialogfhigkeit und Standfestigkeit. ber zwei komplementre Tugenden, in: Evangelische Theologie, 49 (1989), S. 492504; vgl. auch ders., Gibt es
die eine wahre Religion? Versuch einer kumenischen Kriteriologie, in: H. Kng,
Theologie im Aufbruch. Eine kumenische Grundlegung, Mnchen/Zrich 1987,
S. 274306.
23 Vgl. Paul Knitter, Nochmals die Absolutheitsfrage. Grnde fr eine pluralistische
Theologie der Religionen, in: Evangelische Theologie, 49 (1989), S. 505516; und
Perry Schmidt-Leukel, Theologie der Religionen, a. a. O., S. 180 ff.
24 Vgl. Langdon Gilkey, Plurality and Its Theological Implications, in: J. Hick und
P. Knitter (Hrsg.), The Myth of Christian Uniqueness, a. a. O., S. 3750, etwa S. 46:
That puzzle has revealed itself as the apparent contradiction between the requirement
within political action for some fixed or absolute center and an equally unavoidable
relativism. Auch von seinem eigenen Entwurf eines relativ Absoluten verspricht er
sich nur partielle Abhilfe: What to reflection is a contradiction, to praxis is a workable dialectic, a momentary but creative paradox, a. a. O., S. 47; vgl. auch L. Gilkey,
Through the Tempest. Theological Voyages in a Pluralistic Culture, Minneapolis 1991,
S. 31 f.: How can one relativize an absolute starting point? Can there be such a combination of relativity and absoluteness [. . .]? [. . .] As is evident, this new situation represents a genuine puzzle. Let me suggest, however, that difficult as it is to think
one's way out of it, still there are times when we act our way out of it, when what
cannot be resolved in theory is nevertheless resolved in practice.
25 Indessen fhrt die Unzufriedenheit pluralistischer Theoretiker mit dem eigenen
Entwurf dazu, dass der Terminus Pluralismus selbst von jenen Denkern vermieden
wird, die dem Pluralismus sachlich doch verhaftet bleiben: cf. etwa S. Mark Heim,
Salvation. Truth and Differences in Religion (Maryknoll, Orbis 1995); und Paul F.
Knitter, Introducing Theologies of Religion (Maryknoll, Orbis 2002). Davon zu unterscheiden sind die Theologen, die nach einer sachlichen Alternative zu den bisherigen
Modellen suchen: etwa George A. Lindbeck, The Nature of Doctrine. Religion and
Theology in a Postliberal Age (Louisville, Westminster/Knox 1984); J. A. Di Noia,
The Diversity of Religions. A Christian Perspective (Washington, Catholic University
21
22

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118

Richard Schenk

scheint solche Spannungen schon deswegen fr unbedeutend zu erachten, weil


er offenkundig der Maxime folgt: So wenig religise Identitt wie ntig, so viel
Eingrenzung solcher Identitt, so viel Verallgemeinerung aber wie nur mglich.
Ntig sei aber keine berzeugung ber die bloe Standhaftigkeit hinaus fr die
Fortsetzung des Dialogs, fr Gerechtigkeit und fr die Umwelt. Das Projekt
Weltethos verwendet die Ausdrcke Standfestigkeit, Standhaftigkeit und am
Standpunkt Festhalten als weitgehend synonym. Es fragt sich aber, ob die bewusste Reduktion des Geglaubten auf einen bloen Standpunkt je die identittsstiftende Wirkung zugunsten von Dialog, Gerechtigkeit und Umwelt haben
knnte, die sich Kng wnscht. Vielmehr scheint M. Heideggers einst gegen N.
Hartmann gewandtes Diktum zu auf Standpunkten basierenden Projekten auch
hier zuzutreffen. Ein solches Vorhaben . . . entwurzelt die Geschichtlichkeit des
Daseins so weit, dass es sich nur noch im Interesse an der Vielgestaltigkeit
mglicher Typen, Richtungen, Standpunkte des Philosophierens in den entlegensten und fremdesten Kulturen bewegt und mit diesem Interesse die eigene
Bodenlosigkeit zu verhllen sucht.26
Dass Kng bei der Sicherung eines identittsstiftenden Moments nicht ber
vorlufig feste Standpunkte hinauskommt, hngt wohl mit zwei weiteren Momenten seines Denkens zusammen: Das erste ist seine Vorstellung von der kumene: ein Begriff, den er gleich vielen anderen Autoren von innerchristlicher
kumene auf interreligisen Dialog ausweitet: nicht prinzipiell zu Unrecht,
doch hier ohne erkennbares Problembewusstsein. Es wird beispielsweise nicht
gefragt, ob die kumenische Annherung katholischer und reformatorischer
Glaubensgemeinschaften durch gerade diese Art kumenischer Religionstheologie wieder in Frage gestellt wird, zumal fr die Notwendigkeit der Exklusivpartikeln (der solus-Formel) kaum mehr Platz zu sein scheint. Nicht minder belastend wirkt die stillschweigend vorausgesetzte Gleichsetzung von kumene
und Konvergenzkumene. Der heutige Stand der kumene macht indessen
deutlich, wie die als Teilmethode eines umfassenden kumenismus notwendige
Konvergenz- bzw. Konsenskumene durch die doch ebenso notwendigen Teilmethoden einer Relationskumene ergnzt werden muss, welche die eigene Gemeinschaft zur dauerhaft Andersgearteten in Beziehung setzt. Ansonsten droht
der anderen Gemeinschaft ein Tod durch Umarmung oder durch die gemeinsame Reduktion auf ein banales Tertium, wodurch hchstens ein Christsein
ohne Eigenschaften mit einem aus Gemeinpltzen bestehenden Credo fr kurze
Zeit weiterbestehen wrde.
Das zweite Moment, das Kng zur Vermeidung der entgegengesetzten Maxime drngt, nur so viel Eingrenzung religiser Identitt wie ntig, aber so viel
of America 1992); und Paul J. Griffiths, Problems of Religious Diversity (Oxford,
Blackwell 2001).
26 Martin Heidegger, Sein und Zeit, Tbingen 121972, 6, S. 21 ff.

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Identitt wie nur mglich, liegt im Themenbereich von Pluralismus und Postmoderne.
III. Pluralismus und Postmoderne
Kennzeichnend fr das Denken Kngs ist nicht nur die Transparenz seiner
zur Verallgemeinerung tendierenden Religionstheologie auf eine innerchristliche
Konvergenzkumene, sondern auch die Transparenz der interreligisen und
kumenischen Diskussionen auf die Minimalisierung eindeutiger Festlegung innerhalb der katholischen Lehre. Hinter dem interreligisen Anliegen steht ein
interkonfessionelles, hinter dem interkonfessionellen aber steht das intrakonfessionelle Anliegen. Auch und gerade fr das innerkirchliche Anliegen Kngs
liegt ihm die Maxime nahe: So wenig lehrhafte Identitt wie ntig, aber so viel
Eingrenzung solcher Identitt, so viel Pluralisierung wie nur mglich. Dazu
dient nicht zuletzt die das Projekt Weltethos durchlaufende Rede vom Paradigmenwechsel zur Postmoderne. Inzwischen zhlt der Begriff Postmoderne neben
dem der Erfahrung zu den unaufgeklrtesten Begriffen berhaupt. Die extreme
Begriffsweite, die im Bereich der Philosophie und der Kulturwissenschaften fr
den Postmodernismusbegriff konstatiert wird27, gilt inzwischen auch fr die
hufiger werdende Verwendung des Begriffs innerhalb der katholischen Systematik. Die Reichweite erstreckt sich vom Aufruf eines Lieven Boeve, Projektleiters des Forschungsbereichs Theology in a Postmodern Context an der
Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, fr eine Ablsung absoluter Dogmatik
durch open story-telling28 bis hin zum Pldoyer Tracey Rowlands29, Dekanin
des Pope John Paul II Institute for Family and Marriage in Melbourne, fr eine
Radikale Orthodoxie im Geist H. U. von Balthasars, die jede Anleihe aus
27 Vgl. Wolfgang Welsch, Wege aus der Moderne. Schlsseltexte der PostmoderneDiskussion (VCH, acta humaniora, Weinheim 1988).
28 Vgl. Lieven Boeve, Gaudium et Spes and the Crisis of Modernity: The End of
Dialogue with the World? in: M. Lamberigts und L. Kenis (Hrsg.), Vatican II and its
Legacy (Leuven, University Press und Peeters 2002), S. 8294, und ders., Interrupting
Tradition. An Essay on Christian Faith in a Postmodern Context (Louvain, Peeters
2003), bes. S. 65111.
29 Tracey Rowland, Culture and the Thomist Tradition. After Vatican II (London/
New York, Routledge 2003). Dass die Gefahr der Selbstisolierung kein Eigenrecht des
theologischen Postmodernismus sei, zeigt Bernhard Waldenfels, Topographie des
Fremden (Studien zur Phnomenologie des Fremden I), Frankfurt, suhrkamp taschenbuch 1999, S. 151: Ein sprechendes Beispiel (des Ethnozentrismus) bietet Richard
Rorty, wenn er den eigenen amerikanischen way of life bei aller zur Schau gestellten
Skepsis als programmatisches non plus ultra ausgibt, dem keine Fremdheit etwas anhaben kann; vgl. a. a. O., S. 97, Anm. 13. Zu einem hnlichen Urteil ber diese Art
des mit dem Weltethos nahe verwandten, globalisierten Postmodernismus gelangt der
an der Universitt Boston lehrende Stanley Rosen, Rorty and Systematic Philosophy,
in: id., The Ancients and the Moderns (Yale University Press, New Haven 1989),
S. 175188.

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120

Richard Schenk

kulturellen Bereichen einschlielich des Diskurses ber Menschenrechte ablehnt, welche nicht auf eine katholische Provenienz zurckzufhren ist. Dabei
wird der reformierte Hintergrund Balthasars ebensowenig erwhnt wie die offenkundig kalvinistische Vorstellung des hier empfohlenen, radikalen Kommunitarismus. Die eine theologische Postmoderne luft Gefahr, durch Assimilierungsversuche sich vllig zu entfremden. Die andere Postmoderne luft Gefahr,
der Kirche jede Kraft zur Assimilierung fremden Kulturguts abzustreiten. Sie
verhalten sich wie das Zuwenig und das Zuviel an katholischer Identitt bzw.
wie das Zuviel und das Zuwenig jedes Assimilierungsvermgens, das nach John
Henry Newman zum genuinen Leben der Kirche wesentlich gehrt30. Beiden
postmodernen Spielarten katholischer Kulturdeutung gemeinsam ist lediglich
die anzuerkennende Einsicht, die sie mit dem Projekt Weltethos durchaus teilen,
dass die unbegrenzte, charakteristisch neuzeitliche Hoffnung auf technischen
Fortschritt, angeborene Moralitt und souverne Subjekthaftigkeit doch nicht
zum guten Ende fhre, das die Moderne so oft versprochen hatte. Anhand der
Analyse von den Aussagen des Kngschen Projekts zu Postmoderne, Pluralismus, Selbstkritik, Fundamentalismus oder Dogmatik liee sich ohne groe
Mhe die grere Nhe Kngs zum belgischen Entwurf nachweisen, wonach
der Postmodernismus von der Kirche weitgehende Anpassung und Selbstassimilierung verlange. Da dies aber ohnehin dem Vorverstndnis des Projekts globaler Ethik entspricht, soll im Folgenden lieber gefragt werden: was fr Mglichkeiten gibt es sonst?
IV. Relationale Identitt, relationale kumenik
und relationale Nationalitt
Eine plausible Alternative zu den Optionen Selbstauflsung oder Selbstfixiertheit, zugleich eine plausible Alternative zu den Optionen einer sturen Fortsetzung des modernen Selbstvertrauens einerseits oder andererseits der postmodernen Beliebigkeit mit dem damit verbundenen Sich-davonstehlen aus politischer Verantwortung bietet das Paradigma, das Paul Ricoeur 1990 mit seinem
Werk skizzierte: Das Selbst als ein Anderer31. Sein imposantes Lebenswerk
fortsetzend, das um das Problem Freiheit inmitten der Unfreiheit kreist, vergleicht Ricoeur das Selbst mit den beiden Brennpunkten einer Ellipse. Der
Brennpunkt des gleichbleibenden Moments der Identitt (idem) wirkt stets zusammen mit jenem anderen, eher persnlich-biographischen Brennpunkt (ipse)
der Selbstidentitt, der sich verndert, indem er sich erfolgreich oder erfolglos
auf Andere und Anderes bezieht. Das, worauf sich das in diesem Sinn kom30 J. H. Newman, An Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine, II, v, 3
(Garden City, New York, Image/Doubleday 1960), S. 190.
31 W. Fink, Mnchen 1996.

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plexe Selbst zu beziehen hat, ist in erster Linie das, was unvermeidlich mit dem
Selbst zusammenhngt, dessen Leugnung das Selbst defizitr zurcklassen
msse; scholastisch gesprochen, handelte es sich im zweiten Fall nicht um ein
bloes negativum, sondern um eine privatio. Den Begriff Bezeugung von Heidegger und Levinas aufgreifend, nennt Ricoeur drei solche Zeugen fr die
Mglichkeit gelungener, weil gelungen relationaler Identitt: mein Krper, insofern ich akzeptiere, dass er nicht unendlich plastisch oder erneuerbar sei gegenber meinen subjektiven Wnschen (im Kontrast zum szientistischen Mythos
der neuen Cloning-Gesellschaft); andere Personen, insofern ich anerkenne, dass
sie legitime Ansprche auf mich haben, bevor ich ber meine Zuneigung zu
ihnen entscheide; und das Gewissen, dessen gehaltvolle Stimme ich von meinen
Neigungen oder auch guten Absichten zu unterscheiden vermag. Die Fhigkeit
des Selbst, sich zu diesem nicht subjektivistischen Anderen zu verhalten, entscheidet mit ber seine qualifizierte Identitt.
Diese Analyse Ricoeurs gibt sich nicht als vollstndig oder abgeschlossen.
Man knnte in der Tat die Analyse leicht vertiefen, indem man etwa auf die
Unterscheidung der Stimmen des Gewissens gem der mittelalterlichen Gewissenslehre achtet. Diese Stimmenvielfalt des Gewissens, die neben ligare auch
instigare, excusare, accusare und remordere zum Ausdruck bringt, ruft die bereits vorgeformte Subjektivitt immer wieder dazu auf, sich auf das relativ Andere dieser Stimmen neu einzustellen. Das Selbst, das beispielsweise zur begrndeten Reue fhig ist, gelingt in einer Weise, die es sonst nicht erreicht
htte. Man knnte die Analyse ebenso ausweiten, indem weitere Zeugen fr die
Mglichkeit des qualifizierten Selbst aussagen: der Krper der Anderen, um genuine, letztlich personbezogene Erotik von dem Voyeurismus zu unterscheiden,
oder aber auch um die humanere Alternative zu der von Kng empfohlenen
Euthanasie aufzuzeigen; die mhevolle und nicht sofort lohnende Arbeit im
Sinne von Theodor Haeckers Reflektionen32 zu Vergils labor improbus; die bedrohte Umwelt (deren Anliegen auch in den zitierten postmodernen Theologien
zu Wort kam); die nicht revisionistische Geschichtsschreibung, auch in der Kirchengeschichte; oder auch und nicht zuletzt die Bestrebungen anderer Religionen, die immer schon neben der eigenen den Zugang zum Transzendenten beansprucht haben. Die gelungene Identitt schliet Relationalitt dieser Art nicht
aus, sondern ein, wie auch diese Relationalitt ein festes Selbstsein voraussetzt.
Es ist daher kein Zufall, dass mit die besten Dialoge zwischen den Religionen
bisher dem Austausch unter Ordensleuten galten: ein solides Selbstsein ist die
Bedingung der Mglichkeit gelingender Relationalitt; wie gelingende Relationalitt zur Profilierung des Selbst beitrgt.
32 Vgl. Theodor Haecker, Vergil, Vater des Abendlandes (6. Auflage, Mnchen,
Koesel 1948), besonders Kapitel 3, S. 5965; und dazu R. Schenk, Work: The Corruption or Perfection of the Human Being? in: Nova et Vetera (Vol. 2, 2004), S. 129145.

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122

Richard Schenk

Auf diese Grundlagen wre auch die Bestimmung anzustrebender Identitt im


Zeitalter der Globalisierung zu stellen. Im gleichen Jahr wie dem der zitierten
Monographie Ricoeurs beantwortete er seine eigene Frage, Welches neue
Ethos fr Europa? mit dem Hinweis auf eine relationale Identitt, die er mit
den drei Integrationsmodellen bersetzung, Gedchtnisaustausch und Vergebung verband33. Man darf den unausgesprochenen Hintergrund der drei Modelle so bestimmen: Vollkommen gelingende Einigungsprozesse sind im humanen Bereich einzig und allein die, welche partiell bleiben. Das erste Modell
heit daher eben bersetzung, nicht etwa Esperanto, besonders wo es dem
bersetzer gilt, den Genius seiner eigenen Sprache auf das Niveau desjenigen
der Fremdsprache zu heben, die Muttersprache als Zielsprache am Reichtum
der Ausgangssprache und des darin zum Wort Gebrachten partizipieren zu lassen, wie das etwa bei Maimonides und Wilhelm von Moerbeke, bei Meister
Eckhart oder Martin Luther deutlich der Fall war. Auch das zweite Annherungsmodell Gedchtnisaustausch unterstellt kein singulres, kollektives Gedchtnis, sondern eine Vielzahl anamnetischer Traditionen, etwa jdisch und
christlich, christlich und moslemisch, moslemisch und jdisch. Das trifft besonders dort zu, wo es vor allem gilt, sich an nicht gehaltene Versprechungen zu
erinnern. Nichts verschwindet leichter aus einem singulren Gedchtnis als die
Enttuschung des Anderen. Leidensgeschichten verschwnden sonst, sobald die
Wunden des kollektiven Geistes ohne Narben verheilten. Die unvollendete Zukunft der Vergangenheit ist vielleicht der reichste Bestandteil einer Tradition34.
Der Gedchtnisaustausch unter mehreren ist auch Bedingung der Mglichkeit
des dritten Modells, der Vergebung, die im realen Kontext meist nicht zwischen
zwei, sondern unter mehreren geschieht: in einem wechselseitigen Prozess, Vergebung zu suchen und Vergebung zu gewhren, in der komplexen Erinnerung
des zugefgten und des erlittenen Leids: Vergib uns unsere Schuld, wie auch
wir vergeben unseren Schuldigern. Die totale Vereinheitlichung entzieht dem
Gut der aktiven und passiven Vergebung ihre Mglichkeiten und berfhrt
mehrstimmige Geschichte in eine einfltige Vergessenheit. Ricoeur hebt die
Vergebung auch als eine besondere Aufgabe kumenischer und interreligiser
Begegnung hervor.
Die berlegungen Ricoeurs zum genuinen, da relationalen Selbstsein haben
also aktuelle Bedeutung fr die kulturelle, nationale und religise Identitt unserer Zeit. Sie unterscheiden sich vom Entwurf des Projekt Weltethos, in dem
sie ein strkeres Selbstsein verlangt: gerade als die Bedingung der Mglichkeit
jeder Relationalitt. Sie unterscheiden sich aber ebenso vom Entwurf des Clash
of Civilizations, indem sie einen strkeren Bezug zum Anderen verlangt: eben
33 In: Peter Koslowski (Hrsg.), Europa imaginieren (Springer, Berlin et al., 1992),
S. 108122.
34 A. a. O., S. 115.

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Zwischen Projekt Weltethos und The Clash of Civilizations

123

als Bedingung der Mglichkeit des gelungenen Selbstseins. Inzwischen haben


die berlegungen Ricoeurs doch eine, wie mir scheint, kongeniale Fortsetzung
gefunden in der Ausarbeitung der Bedeutung der romanitas bei Remi Brague35.
Auch wenn die Romanitt einen charakteristischen Grundzug Europas nennt, so
deutet sie doch auch auf eine zutiefst humane, also auch gemeinsam zugngliche Tugend: die Fhigkeit, auf andere hinzuhren, nicht um die Andersheit des
Anderen verdauend in sich aufzuheben, auch nicht um die eigene Identitt zu
verleugnen, sondern um das Selbst als eine auf Andere dauerhaft bezogene
Identitt zu steigern. Noch mehr als die Identitt Europas ist bereits die Identitt des Christentums, gerade in seiner rmischen Prgung, die Identitt einer
bewusst sekundren und fundierten Religion, zu deren Identitt das Bewusstsein wesentlich gehrt, vom ersten Bund abgeleitet zu sein.
In this way, it was religious secondarity that prevented all culture inherited from
Christianity, as in the case with Europe, from considering itself as its own source.
The refusal of Marcionism is thus, perhaps, the founding event of the history of
Europe as a civilization, in that it furnished the matrix of the European relationship
to the past and anchored it at the highest possible level36.

Zusammenfassung
Die Spannung zwischen regionaler und universaler Identitt tritt hervor in den weithin antithetisch gelagerten Diskussionen ber Hans Kngs Projekt Weltethos und
Samuel Huntingtons Buch The Clash of Civilizations. Beide Autoren verteidigen die
These, die inzwischen nicht mehr in Frage gestellt wird, dass religiser Friede die
Voraussetzung des politischen Friedens ist; aber sie stimmen nicht berein in der
Frage, welche interreligisen Beziehungen am besten dem Ziel des interreligisen
Friedens dienen. Kng betont die universale Identitt auf Kosten der spezifischen
Identitt; Huntington vertritt die Gegenthese. Nach einem Rckblick auf die Entstehung und auf die Sackgassen, in die die pluralistischen Religionstheorien in der Zeit
von 1980 bis 2000 geraten sind, wendet sich der Artikel den philosophischen Ideen

35 Remi Brague, Eccentric Culture. A Theory of Western Civilization (South Bend,


St. Augustine 2002); vgl. auch Robert Spaemann, Religise Identitt, in: Krysztof
Michaelski (Hrsg.), Identitt im Wandel (Stuttgart, Klett-Cotta 1995), S. 6178. Zum
Begriff der Relationskumene vgl. R. Schenk, Eine kumene des Einspruchs. Systematische berlegungen zum heutigen kumenischen Prozess aus einer rmisch-katholischen Sicht, in: ders. und Hans Otte (Hrsg.), Die Reunionsgesprche im Niedersachsen des 17. Jahrhunderts. Rojas y Spinola Molan Leibniz (Goettingen, Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht 1999), S. 225250.
36 Brague, Eccentric Culture, a. a. O., S. 112; vgl. dazu die i. J. 1920 vorgelegte
konfessionelle Deutung des Anti-Marcionismus bei Adolf von Harnack, Marcion: Das
Evangelium vom fremden Gott: Eine Monographie zur Geschichte der Grundlegung
der katholischen Kirche. Neue Studien zu Marcion (Berlin, Akademie-Verlag, 1960);
wie bereits ders., Marcion, der moderne Glubige des 2. Jahrhunderts, der erste Reformator. Die Dorpater Preisschrift, 1870: kritische Edition des handschriftlichen Exemplars mit einem Anhang, hrsg. von Friedemann Steck, Berlin, W. de Gruyter 2003.

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124

Richard Schenk

von P. Ricoeur und R. Brague zu, die darauf abzielen, dass religise Selbstidentitt
und interreligise Bezogenheit sich wechselseitig befruchten.

Summary
The tension between regional and universal identity is explored in the largely antithetic discussions around H. Kng's Global Ethics Project and S. Huntington's The
Clash of Civilizations. While both authors defend the thesis, now considered selfevident, that religious peace is a prerequisite of political peace, they disagree on the
kind of interreligious relations that would best serve the goal of interreligious peace.
The former stresses universal identity at the cost of specific identity; the latter, just
the reverse. After a review of the rise and aporization of pluralistic theories of religion (19802000), the essay draws on the philosophies of P. Ricoeur and R. Brague
to suggest that religious self-identity and interreligious relationality need to develop in
tandem.

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II. Strukturprobleme
der internationalen Ordnung

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What is Europe?
Europe and America in Global Context
An American Vision
By Michael Novak
This is one American's vision of Europe, the North Atlantic Alliance, and
the Global Principles that will govern the 21st century.
Europe without North America would omit, Hannah Arendt wrote in On Revolution, Europe's noblest achievement. And I would add, North America without Europe is not conceivable. America is a child of Jerusalem, Athens, and
Rome, of Paris, and London, and Edinburgh. To be understood fully, Europe
must be seen as America's parent, and therefore as the elder partner of the
North Atlantic Alliance. That alliance has been the most powerful and successful cultural alliance in history because of its naturalness, its glad confirmation
of centuries of parent-child bonding.
Initially, I want to concentrate on Europe the parent, not on North America.
In reflecting today upon Europe, then, I mean the European Union, with its
more or less fluid and changeable outer boundaries. I mean the Continent, from
the westernmost tip of Portugal (farther west than Ireland) to the easternmost
lands of Russia to the north and to the south as far, perhaps, as Istanbul. The
exact boundaries are for Europeans to decide.
I. What is Europe?
I know that Europeans have so far resisted making any reference in their new
Constitution even in its Preamble to Judaism and Christianity. That seems
to me a foreshortened view of their own history and identity, but that is of
course for Europeans to decide. In their self-understanding, perhaps Europeans
prefer not to include Chartres, or Monte Cassino, or the glorious cathedral in
Cologne, or the monasteries for which Munich is named, or the various other
Benedictine and Carthusian centers, around which their most famous cities
slowly formed. Perhaps they wish to forget the monasteries in which manuscripts were lovingly copied and made available, and music and the plastic arts
and the great visions and achievements of European architecture were nour-

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128

Michael Novak

ished. Perhaps they do not recognize the early Jewish-Christian tradition of inventiveness the rear rudder for ships, instruments for navigation on the vast
oceans, the shoulder harness for horses and oxen, magnifying glasses, telescopes, and a later tide upon tide of practical devices that were sponsored and
blessed as the rightful fruition of the Creator's original Creative Act.
Maybe for contemporary Europeans, the Creator of the Hebrews is not
needed to explain the distinctiveness of Europe among rival civilizations of the
world. Maybe the Enlightenment alone is enough. Perhaps, then, modern Europeans have lost their sense of irony. For as Zarathustra pointed out, once the
Enlightenment has taken place, God is dead. And with him, so is reason. That
is why Zarathustra wept.
Embodied in the very name Enlightenment' is one of the great acts of bigotry in intellectual history, a manichean cleavage of history. To identify one's
own kind with light as if they were the sole possessors of light and others
as creatures of darkness is the essence of metaphysical dualism. Such a boast
does not even pretend to be fair. It is in fact a throwback to religious dualisms
that preceded the Hebrew/Christian era.
The self-identification of contemporary Europeans with the Enlightenment
has profound political and even demographic implications. The Enlightenment
Project to found a philosophy of ethics on reason alone has ended in failure. Is X evil? Some philosophers say yes, some say no; some cheer for X, and
some whistle; and some say reason has nothing whatever to do with ethics.
Ethics is all a matter of taste, preference, choice. Ethical judgments are all relative, all subjective, so that, in fact, there is no universal ethic.
If that is so, Zarathustra was, sadly, correct. Not only God is dead but, in
ethics at least, reason is also dead. Indeed, as the most European of American
philosophers, Richard Rorty, puts it, there is meaninglessness all the way
down.
But if the proud philosophical intention of the Enlightenment has ended in its
polar opposite the denial of the relevance of reason to ethical life so also
has the demographic impulse of the Book of Genesis, in which the Creator
commands that humans should increase and multiply, and fill the earth. Europe is dying for want of a sufficient number of births. Europe is shrinking, not
multiplying. The European welfare states will be unable to pay to the elderly
the benefits they have so lavishly promised, for the necessary millions of young
workers will not be there to pay the costs. This is an unforeseen consequence of
a culture of meaninglessness and death.
In a world of relativism, further, the greatness of Europe has been undermined. Boasting has become anachronistic. If everything is now absurd, all the

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129

achievements of Europe amount to nothing. All that is left is multiculturalism, another term for self-loathing. Everything is absurd, period.
Some may be initially happy that an Age of Non-judgmentalism has dawned.
The God of the Bible, the undeceivable Judge of all consciences, who at the
end of each human life demands an accounting of every deliberate thought,
word, and deed, was long since slain. Humans are at last free, and at the same
time their lives are meaningless. Neither thoughts, nor words, nor deeds any
longer matter. Why, then, does life?
Yet at least one large and growing body of Europeans does still hold that life
has meaning, purpose, and direction that great stream of Muslims who keep
slipping openly and legally into Europe. These Muslims silently overcome the
purposeless Welfare State from within, simply through their fecundity and optimism. What they could not conquer by force of arms at Malta in 1565, or at
Lepanto in 1571, or just outside Vienna in 1683, they almost without opposition are conquering now by the comparative advantage of purposefulness over
the doctrine that life is absurd.
It used to be that we could identify the meaning of Europe by contrast with
other civilizations the Asiatic hordes' that Karl Marx and John Stuart Mill
alike referred to, and the Muslims of the desert tribes of the Middle East. In
my eyes, as a young boy reading history in America, Europe meant liberty, and
liberty was meaningful, it was the scarlet interpretive thread of human history.
It was the comparative advantage of the West. Now liberty appears to have
been discarded, among the other goods rejected by post-modernism (the old
nihilism in polyester dress). Liberty is dismissed as just another Western prejudice. There is something in nihilistic souls that is drawn like helpless moths
into the fire of fierce, brutal and primitive power, as at a beheading. Some
dread fascination with terror, and with brute, naked will, with what Mussolini
described as la feroce volonta. When men lose confidence in intellect, their
soul consists of will alone, undirected will.
Meanwhile, while hundreds of million of Muslims have been taught to hate
Europe, other hundreds of millions of Muslims long to share in the prosperity
and opportunities of free peoples, and to find personal respect, and to enjoy the
protections of their right to be free from tyranny and torture and oppression by
omnipresent secret police. They wish to be devout Muslims, yes, but they also
wish to share in the benefits of the 21st century. They do not understand why
Islam cannot be understood in connection with democracy and human rights,
rather than in the primitive categories of 11th century Sha'ria law. There is
great turmoil in the Muslim soul today. Not all are killers; far from a majority
support the terrorists. The internal drama in the soul of Muslim peoples will be
one of the greatest dramas of the rest of this century.

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130

Michael Novak

It would be one of history's greatest ironies if the Muslims of Europe were,


by their own doctrine of divine rewards and punishments (which implies the
decisive value of liberty), slowly converted to the secrets of liberty. And if perhaps this conversion occurred a week or two after today's Europeans had totally
abandoned their own confidence in liberty, to fall limp and passive before their
inevitable fate.
The idea of freedom is beginning to burn like a slow prairie fire in the dry
grasses of the vast Islamic world, where it has until now never been nourished.
The seed is there in the soil of Islam. It needs water and fertilizer and tender
care. In an atmosphere of meaningfulness and divine purpose, it will flourish.
Under a standard of fair and undeceivable judgment, it may leap into life. It is
at least thinkable that European Muslims will marry purposefulness to liberty in
a new synthesis. Perhaps they will tire of autocratic misrule, and transitions of
power chiefly by the mode of assassination, and needless poverty and grinding
frustration. Perhaps they will see that Allah made humans to be free, and to
seek Him in freedom, and worship Him in freedom, with love and in truth.
There are great possibilities in Islam, yet to be tapped Avicenna caught a
glimpse of them in the eleventh century and opened the eyes of Aquinas and
Maimonides to some of them.

II. Europe and Liberty


I, a poor and distant American, would have thought that the one great secret
that Europe had long borne within its bosom, and nourished, and reflected on,
and expanded its most precious jewel, its comparative advantage, its unique
glory is the Spirit of Liberty. By liberty, I mean with Lord Acton the duty to
do, not what one wishes to do, but what one ought to do.
By the iron rule of instinct, other animals cannot do other than follow the
laws of their own nature, doing what their instincts demand. Humans have a
more complicated nature. We alone among the animals can reflect and deliberate before we act, and we can choose to act when, how, and with what purpose
we choose. Whatever our wants or our instincts signal us, we reflect, deliberate,
and choose what we will do. We discern the entire range of the many laws of
our own nature, consult the laws of God, are solicited by the Tempter, and hear
the inspirations of both the more malicious and the better angels of our nature. We reflect and choose.
Taking responsibility for the full range of the consequences of our own acts,
we gain sovereignty over ourselves. From reflection, deliberation and our own
choice, we do what we ought to do. In that way, we slowly become what we are
capable of becoming, women and men who are actually responsible and free.

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What is Europe? Europe and America in Global Context

131

Freedom in the full European sense is a form of self-government or self-mastery. So, at least, I learned at school and was taught by observation. When in
his extremity the young Italian hostage, blindfolded, shouted to his captors in
Iraq, Take the bandage from my eyes and you will see how an Italian dies! I
heard the echoes of heroes I had read about since reading Cicero, Horace, and
Virgil. (We in America shall never be able to thank Italy enough for coming to
aid America in our extremity, as we take on our mutual, huge and amorphous,
but deadly, enemy. And not our enemy alone, but the enemy of true Islam.)
Yes, Europe is distinguished among all civilizations for discovering the central role of insight and will in the human story. By insight I mean the aha!
experience of understanding at any individual moment what is going on but
I also mean, in its second moment, the slowly forming grasp of which course
of action, after reflection and deliberation, is best in that situation to pursue.
Of course, many a clear understanding fails to end in action. Understanding is
not enough. Will is needed. To will is to choose to carry through one's reflections into execution. Through will, we throw our weight into the surrounding
world.
Reflection and choice are the central motifs of every story in the Hebrew and
Christian bible; for Europe, they are the axial line of human history. The ancient cultures of Greece and Rome, and the later but less advanced cultures of
northern Europe, were fertile soil for such instruction. For some five millennia
now, Europe has taken freedom seriously.
What, then, is Europe? Europe is the birthplace, nursery, and centuries-long
training ground of liberty. Liberty as an idea. Liberty as a personal aspiration.
Liberty as the story line of history. Liberty as a seed to be nurtured until it
blossoms in every aspect of life, in culture, in politics, and most recently of all
in economics.
Liberty as self-government and self-mastery not just liberty as whim. An
adult, responsible liberty, not a childish liberty. A liberty hedged around with
many distinctions, learned through trial and error and grievous mistake. Liberty
under law. Liberty after reflection. A liberty respectful of others.
A liberty for whose use one is accountable to the Judge of all. A liberty
which cannot be shucked off onto others. An inalienable liberty.
It has taken Europe centuries to work all this out. One can be fairly certain
that not all the necessary lessons have yet been learned. That, too, is Europe's
glory the open-endedness of its ambition.

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132

Michael Novak

III. The New Crossroads


Meanwhile let us not deny it ever since the fall of the Soviet Union (and
actually, the moment of division goes back farther than that, back to the noncomprehension in Europe of the politics and economics of Lady Thatcher and
Ronald Reagan), great stresses of many different kinds have been driving Europe and America apart. Some of these stresses are merely emotional, rooted in
deep human passions of an understandable kind rivalry, envy, competitiveness, pride. Some derive from age-old matters of temperament, such as the European longing for security, after so much fratricidal warfare; and for equality,
after so many centuries of stratification by class.
The European temperament seems preternaturally socialist in inclination,
only cozy and comfortable when in collectivist closeness. By contrast, the
American temperament has been forged in the fact of having left everything
behind, to risk everything, in order to try something new. Americans love risk
even more than Europeans love security. And while Americans pride themselves on liberty under the law which was their way of breaking down
class barriers before such fences could be raised they do not believe for a
moment that justice is achieved by equality of results. Those who risk more
and achieve more, they know from experience, deserve more than freeloaders,
those who stayed behind in comfort without taking the risks or doing the heavy
lifting. When Americans speak of liberty, they have in mind the experience of
risking everything in order to create something new. In justice, rewards must be
commensurate with risk, work, inventiveness, and yes, even good fortune.
Again, the word enterprise is a powerfully American word. I was told once
don't know if it's true that Americans use the word fifteen times more than
the British do. When the first Americans landed in Massachusetts, or later came
to Minnesota and so on, there was no eleventh-century church waiting for them,
no gymnasium built generations ago, no windmill, no factory. There were not
even fields that had been tilled for centuries, or homes, or barns. Whatever they
needed, they had to build. So American communities cherished persons with a
superior degree of enterprise the habit of seeing what needs to be done, and
how to do it, and the accompanying habit of sticking to it, and applying practical inventiveness until the new thing has been created, where nothing like it
had stood before. Americans love risk, they love inventiveness and practicality,
and they love the ability to get results.
When I am in Europe in a regional hotel, I often have the experience of
trying to explain to the manager how some request of mine can actually be
accommodated it can be done and then I often see the back of his neck
become red as he resists being instructed in something new, when the old ways
have worked quite well, and he finds Americans insufferably impatient and demanding and superior.

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133

Europeans and Americans were able to get beyond all that when the task at
hand was to defeat the Nazis, and the next task was to outlast the Communists.
We Europeans and Americans did better when we had a common and terrible
enemy.
It is obvious today that we do not see eye-to-eye regarding the new enemy.
For most of us are convinced that international terrorism from Islamists that
is, from the political distortion of a noble religion is a form of international
war. We believe that resistance to terrorism is war, even though it is not exactly
with states, but with loosely organized networks of non-state actors, surreptitiously supported by certain states. Europeans are plainly not convinced. Perhaps something will happen that will convince Europeans that the Americans
are correct. Perhaps, on the contrary, something will happen to convince the
Americans that terrorism should not be conceived as a cause for war, only as a
matter for prevention. (I do not believe this will happen. The memories of September 11 are indelible.)
For the time being, the die has been cast. Europeans are fighting well on the
prevention front, and nearly every week we hear of new terror plots being
foiled, in country after country, in Europe and elsewhere. The threat is, plainly,
international. We Americans are doing what we judge we have to do. On this,
our nation is pretty much united. Even though the American left, much like the
European left, is passionately anti-war, the Democratic rival to President Bush
in the previous election had virtually the same strategy for this war as the President. The Democratic candidate holds to this strategy because that's where the
mainstream is, even though he faced a threat from the candidate of the anti-war
left.
Do not be misled by the American press, including the elements most visible
in Europe, from The New York Times in its European version, The Herald Tribune, through Time and Newsweek to CNN. Our elite press is virtually indistinguishable from the left wing of the Democratic Party. It is not as far to the left
as our extremists would wish, but it is farther to the left than any presidential
candidate who could possibly get elected by the American people. This is especially true today, when the key issues seem to be sexual and moral, having to
do with homosexuality, abortion, and other life questions. Our press is not only
far to the left of the popular mainstream but far more secular. It is even,
although it can scarcely reveal this openly, far more contemptuous of religion.
Nonetheless, all these differences between Europe and America are actually
the fruit of our outstanding successes together, during the virtually one hundred
years of our informal or formal North Atlantic Alliance, united against all
threats to our common culture. Our differences and divergences are, really,
rather like family quarrels. These can be the most bitter and painful of quarrels.
But they are made acute by our very family resemblances to one another, and

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Michael Novak

by the importance of the things we quarrel about. Did we like each other less,
and depend on each other less, and not feel in each other's debt, we would not
quarrel with equal passion.
Our emotions are raw precisely because we mean so much to each other. We
can't stand to see the other turning away from what seems so dear to us. How
can they behave like that? we are each tempted to ask about the other. As the
French say about the Americans: They have too great a sense of grandeur, and
they are too uncivilized, they need to be checked by the combined weight of
sophisticated Europeans, we will lead, follow us! As we in America say about
the French, God bless the French! They are always there when they need us.
These passions need to be kept under control. President Bush needs to work
very hard during the next four years, with a Secretary of State who will be
more actively engaged in Europe and a fixture on this Continent month after
month, so as to re-focus the North Atlantic Alliance. From the living heart of
this Alliance go out to the world the secrets of creative, prosperous, enterprising economies, the checks and balances of democratic politics, and respect for
the inalienable rights of the person, which are the great hope of this planet's
future. Europe and America need to prepare themselves for the coming greatness of China and India; for the coming movement, however fast or however
slow, of the Muslim world toward more open civil societies, and toward some
new version of Islamic democracy; and for the transformation of that most disorganized and suffering of continents, Africa. Europe and America must also
attend more closely to the barely begun process of reform in the former USSR.
In the words of the director of the New Atlantic Initiative, Radek Sikorski,
Russia is going increasingly autocratic, Belorus has death squads, and Central
Asia is sliding toward the bottom of the Third World scale.
These are serious challenges that Europe and America will do far better tackling together. They are beyond the power and beyond the wisdom of either
one of us alone.
In real time, today, international terrorism is a menace whose full dimensions
are not yet apparent to many, many people. (That includes a good many also in
America.) I pray that we do not have to learn the hard way, again, how destructive that threat has the potential to be. Prudent and well-informed persons say a
dirty nuclear bomb in a suitcase or two, fitted with biological or chemical
agents, could kill a hundred thousand people at once in almost any major city.
Yet even if we concentrate our minds only on the positive challenges we
face, on the huge creative tasks of reducing bleak poverty in much of the
world, of seeing to it that fresh drinking water is universally accessible (as it
now is not in huge stretches of the planet), of overcoming the AIDS epidemic,
and of helping to turn unstable dictatorships in the direction of becoming wellchecked and balanced democracies, we have great things to do together.

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What is Europe? Europe and America in Global Context

135

For the well-being of the planet toward the end of the current century, we
have a tremendous amount of work we must do together even in analyzing it
judiciously, let alone in executing it with imagination and good practical success.
IV. The New Global Rules
What, then, is a project worthy of the common effort of our two very different peoples, united by a common culture, which we have cultivated in somewhat divergent ways? Most people recognize that certain global rules have
emerged from the cauldron of wars and vast social experiments of the twentieth-century. Let me mention four of them.
1. Although democracy is a poor form of government, except by comparison
with all the others, it is far better than dictatorship for the protection of human
rights, long-term prosperity, peace among nations, the rule of law, and the
peaceful transition of power.
2. A relatively free, open, inventive, enterprising economy is more creative,
and generates greater prosperity for the poor and more ample opportunities for
an almost unlimited range of individual talents, than a centrally planned economy heavily managed by the few. This is because the wealth of nations is
based primarily upon human capital, that is, wit, skill, trained expertise, knowhow, invention, and enterprise, much more than upon physical capital. The
main cause of wealth is the wit [caput] of the human individual, in a free system. For this reason, capitalism is a suitable name for the system, even though
marxists have denigrated that name for 150 years. The centripetal, coordinationseeking tendencies of a free economy result from the need to serve others well
if one's own enterprise is to prosper, and therefore one must pay close attention
to the needs of others. The system by its inner nature tends toward creative
coordination, unplanned but mutually attentive. Self-interest rightly understood is larger and more generous than naked or raw self-interest, and it is the
former that a sound economic culture cultivates.
A corollary of this principle is that most people, especially the poor, will not
be satisfied with democracy if it does not bring them steadily improving economic well-being. If all democracy affords them is the opportunity to vote
every two or four years, without material improvement, they will become disillusioned with it. A dynamic, creative economy is a necessary but not sufficient
condition for the success of democracy. Some significant degree of capitalism
is a necessary condition for democracy.
3. No people can succeed in building a democratic polity or a free, dynamic
economy without developing the required moral and intellectual habits and the

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136

Michael Novak

necessary civic associations. Both political liberty from torture and tyranny, and
economic liberty from poverty, depend upon a vigorous culture of liberty, nourishing the attitudes, dispositions, and habits appropriate to free institutions.
Such habits of the heart (Tocqueville) include personal responsibility, initiative, honesty, hard work, determination, practicality, teamwork, social trust, cooperativeness, solidarity, and the like.
4. Experience shows that state officials ought to have no power over religious life and religious leaders ought to have no power over the life of the
state. But this so-called separation of church and state does not entail the
banishment of religion from the public celebrations and festivities of the state,
or from the public social life of the nation.
In fact, those Jews, Christians, Muslims and others who hold that the origin
of human rights lies in the inalienable duty that each human person owes his
Creator, may by that conviction secure one of the best safeguards of those
rights from intrusion by state power. Our rights come from our Creator, not
from any state. In this sense, Tocqueville held that religion is the first political
institution of democracy. It gives to rights a transcendent protection from abuse
and in addition holds high the spiritual standard that corrects democracy's natural drift toward materialism and lower interests. Thus, religion of certain sorts
not antithetical to reason but complementary to it is not an enemy to democracy but, on the contrary, a great protector of democracy against mediocrity, nihilism and cynicism.
A corollary of this principle is that Islam itself, in a certain self-understanding, can find in democracy a friend and ally. To accept democracy, it is not
necessary to renounce faith. But it is necessary to be convinced of the longterm benefits to religion of respect for the rights of personal conscience, and
for the independence of the state from control by religious officials. It appears
that more and more Islamic religious leaders are accepting this point among
them, the grandson of Ayatollah Khomeini in Iran, for instance, and Al Sistani,
the religious leader of the Shi'ites in Iraq.
If we are to build truly free societies around the world in the future, we shall
need the efforts of all those believers and unbelievers alike who hold that liberty is indispensable to the common good of the human race. Believers may
even add that the glory of God is liberty fully alive. A God who is Judge of
human conduct is a God for whom liberty is the central nervous system of His
creation. Without it, He could have no way to extend his friendship to men, or
they to accept or to reject it.

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What is Europe? Europe and America in Global Context

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V. A New Community of Free Societies


Most observers, from Kofi Annan down, have publicly recognized how far
the United Nations have fallen from the high aspirations of their founding. The
Security Council no longer represents adequately the political realities of the
world's present population. A declining Europe has too many seats on it, and
highly populous nations such as India, Brazil, Indonesia, and Pakistan do not
have their rightful place in its ranks. In addition, some continental regions such
as Africa and Latin America, and some dynamic religious civilizations such as
Islam, are not properly recognized within it.
The UN General Assembly, meanwhile, allows for no admissions standards
whatsoever. While this rule allows for total inclusiveness, which has its own
value, it also creates room for potent and irreparable abuses. Shocking scandals
arise when states that are among the worst abusers of human rights in the world
are accorded places on the Human Rights Commission, even including as its
Chair. The not-so-hidden purpose of these elections is to stop any real progress
in correcting human rights abuses. Generally speaking, the open admissions policy of the General Assembly dramatically lowers the standards of what the UN
can accomplish, and is a powerful, stinking breeder of international cynicism.
Finally, in such critical matters as war and peace, the UN has shown itself to
be as much a creature of national self-interests and realpolitik as individual
states ever were. Its actions in such deadly matters have been indecisive, inconsistent, or paralytically timid. It has allowed genocide to go forward, as in
Rwanda, it has proved powerless in preventing the enslavement and slaughter
of more than two million in Sudan, it has ignored various incursions of French
forces into former French colonies in times of distress, and it has emptily threatened sanctions against Saddam Hussein 17 times without effect, while hundreds
of thousands were being tortured and killed, and while dangers to the region
mounted. Without purpose and clear standards and methods agreed-upon in
advance, the United Nations has not aged gracefully. It has become, or is in
danger of becoming, a tiger not only without teeth and claws, but with very old
and shedding fur, and sawdust for a heart. It is being treated by dictatorships as
a rug rather than a living force.
The world, however, needs global law and practical global principles, a sense
of direction and purposefulness, along with classical patience and temperance
and calm. The world needs the liberty of self-mastery of which Europe was the
world's first teacher. It needs the wisdom of Europe and the energy of the United States, the strength of that alliance of parent and child that proved so capable of great achievements in the first fifty years after the Second World War.
That is why I propose the construction of a more effective and purposeful
and well-focused version of the United Nations. I do not mean, necessarily, the

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138

Michael Novak

destruction of the United Nations. No, my proposal, rather, is to create an institution separate from the present UN, structured in a new way, and given clear
purposes, stringent criteria of membership, and concrete, specific standards of
behavior. Let me call the new international organization that I imagine the community of free peoples or the democratic community. Let us imagine that this
new CFP or DC would initially be composed of approximately eighty or ninety
nations, each admitted because it had demonstrated its commitment to protecting and enlarging the effective personal rights of its citizens. In other words,
such nations have been selected because they already respect human persons in
their capacities to reflect, choose, and accept responsibility for their own actions.
One of the clearly stated aims of this Community would be to expand the
circle of such nations until this circle is truly universal. No merely exclusive
club, this Community would be, rather, a fellowship eager to help other aspiring nations meet its criteria for membership. Its public celebration of the accession of new members (scheduled perhaps as a grand yearly event) would serve
as an attraction and inspiration for others.
The Community of Free Peoples would offer protection to one another
against incursion by undemocratic forces, aiming to destroy their liberties.
Over time, the Community of Free Peoples might offer privileges to one another and shared benefits that would give tangible rewards to those belonging to
it, as an additional incentive to those aspiring to join its ranks, and as a sweetening help and benefit to those already enjoying the blessings of liberty.
This Community might also over time think through strategies for helping
the undemocratic nations of the world to develop those conditions of life, habits of the heart, and practical institutions that make democracy workable. Freedom is not an easy aim to attain, nor are the paths to it intuitive, but often the
reverse counterintuitive, and learned by trial and error, rather than by a priori
reasoning. Human perversity and a propensity to disordered appetites, both
among the strong and the weak, and among the rich and the poor, must be
checked and balanced by many ingenious social devices, as appropriate to each
culture.
VI. Conclusion
In the real world of today, all of China, most of the former Soviet Union,
nearly all of Africa, and many nations in many parts of the world are much in
need of such help. This need is urgently felt among scores of millions of Muslims, who today long for the dignity of having their personal rights respected,
as well as the economic opportunity and prosperity that come in the wake of
liberty.

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What is Europe? Europe and America in Global Context

139

In a word, there is a world full of work for Europe and the United States to
do together. If not by us, by whom shall it be done? And if we do not do it,
how shall our children enjoy a world of peace and mutual respect?
Europe is destined to be united with America, and America with Europe, and
we would be supremely foolish to allow shallow and unworthy passions to divert us from that destiny. Together we have great work still to accomplish. Europe is the mother, America the child. Who shall separate the mother from the
child?
The wisdom of King Solomon lay in grasping that law.
Summary
America without Europe is inconceivable; America is the child of Jerusalem,
Athens, and Rome, of Paris and London and Edinburgh. The great secret that Europe
has long borne within itself, nourished, and reflected on is the spirit of Liberty: the
duty to do, not what one wishes to do, but what one ought to do. And the North
Atlantic Alliance has been the most successful alliance in history. Yet today Europe
and America have strenuously disagreed regarding the new terrorist enemy. Both sides
ask, How can the other behave like that? What, then, is a project worthy of the common effort of our two different peoples, united by a common culture? Four global
rules learned through the catastrophes of the twentieth century are: (1) Democracy is a
poor regime, yet best for prosperity and the protection of human rights; (2) An enterprising economy harnesses the creativity of free persons to lift vast numbers out of
poverty; (3) Democracy and a free economy need a culture of personal responsibility,
hard work, cooperativeness, initiative, and other virtues; (4) Religious freedom allows
for a profound pluralism without banishing religion from the public square.
The world needs a competent international body, but today the UN Security Council no longer represents political realities of the world's population, and the UN General Assembly is a body with no standards or principles. The author proposes a new,
smaller institution separate from the present UN, newly structured, with clear purposes, and stringent criteria of membership: The Community of Free Peoples or The
Democratic Community.

Zusammenfassung
Amerika ist ohne Europa nicht denkbar; Amerika ist das Kind von Jerusalem, von
Athen und Rom, von Paris und London und Edinburgh. Das groe Geheimnis, das
Europa seit langem in sich trgt, nhrte und darber nachdachte, ist der Geist der Freiheit: die Pflicht zu tun, nicht was man mchte, sondern was man tun mu. Und das
Nordatlantische Bndnis war das erfolgreichste Bndnis in der Geschichte. Heute jedoch streiten Europa und Amerika stndig darber, wie dem neuen Feind des Terrorismus zu begegnen sei. Beide Seiten fragen: Wie kann die je andere Seite sich so benehmen? Gibt es einen Weg, der die gemeinsame Anstrengung der beiden Vlker, die
durch eine gemeinsame Kultur verbunden sind, lohnt? Die Katastrophen des 20. Jahr-

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140

Michael Novak

hunderts haben uns vier gemeinsame Regeln gelehrt: (1) Demokratie ist ein schwaches
Regime, dennoch das beste, um Wohlstand und den Schutz der Menschenrechte zu
verbrgen; (2) die Unternehmenswirtschaft weckt die Kreativitt freier Personen, um
viele aus der Armut herauszuholen; (3) Demokratie und freie Wirtschaft bedrfen einer Kultur der persnlichen Verantwortung, der harten Arbeit, der Zusammenarbeit,
der Initiative und anderer Tugenden; (4) die religise Freiheit ermglicht einen tiefreichenden Pluralismus, ohne die Religion aus der ffentlichkeit zu verbannen.
Die Welt bedarf eines kompetenten internationalen Gremiums; aber der UNO-Sicherheitsrat reprsentiert heute nicht mehr die politischen Wirklichkeiten der Weltbevlkerung, und die Vollversammlung der UNO ist ein Gremium ohne Normen und
Prinzipien. Der Autor schlgt eine neue schlankere Institution neben der bisherigen
UNO vor mit neuen Strukturen, mit klaren Aufgaben und mit verpflichtenden Kriterien fr ihre Mitglieder: die Gemeinschaft der freien Vlker oder die demokratische
Gemeinschaft.

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Robert Schuman Blessed Father of Europe


By Patrick Quirk
He was a saint in a business suit.
(Konrad Adenauer, first Chancellor
of the Federal Republic of Germany
on Robert Schuman)

The author makes no claim to possess a unique interpretation of Robert


Schuman's vision for Europe, mainly because this vision', if it may be so
called, was for Schuman only meant to unfold in concrete terms and as part of
a Christian community, and not in furtherance of an ideological project. Far
from being born a militant European', Schuman chose to be European in a
particular way at a particular time.1 So too must the generations that come after
him.
I. Robert Schuman2
1. Life and Times

Robert Jean-Baptiste Nicolas Schuman was born on June 29, 1886 the feast
of Saints Peter and Paul in Clausen, Luxembourg, the only child of JeanPierre and Eugnie Schuman. Jean-Pierre had fought for the French in the
Franco-Prussian war of 1870/71, a war in which the victorious Germans imposed heavy reparations on the losers, and forced France to cede Alsace and
part of Lorraine. After being freed as a prisoner of war, Jean-Pierre did not
want to return to France, or to remain a citizen in the newly annexed region of
Prussia-Germany. The apparent compromise was to settle in politically neutral
Luxembourg.3

1 See Michel Pierre Chelini, Robert Schuman et l'ide europenne, Cloture du process diocesain en vue de la beatification du serviteur de Dieu, Robert Schuman, Diocese de Metz Service Communication, 2004.
2 Much of this part is based upon Hans August Lcker and Jean Seitlinger, Robert
Schuman und die Einigung Europas (Luxembourg: Editions Saint-Paul, 2000).
3 A member of the German customs union since 1842.

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Patrick Quirk

After attending elementary school in Clausen, Robert moved to the Humanistischen Gymnasium des Athenums (high school) in Luxembourg. Strong Catholic surroundings and training as an altar server (Tridentine) would have instilled
a sense of vocation, and the sudden death of his father in 1900 doubtless gave
the boy a more religious and solemn outlook on life. Certainly the ambiguities
associated with his father's citizenship would have had an impact on the young
Robert: officially holding German citizenship, and never having applied for citizenship of Luxembourg, Jean Pierre lived in Luxembourg and yet described
himself as a Lothringer (Lorrainer) in the 1885 national census. Officially,
there was no such thing. Always a bone of contention, Alsace-Lorraine had
long belonged officially to France, but from 1871 to 1946 it had changed hands
four times: from the end of the Franco-Prussian war it was ruled directly from
Berlin, with some level of independence being gained before World War I.
Thereafter, the region was again part of France with a commissioner-general
for Alsace-Lorraine appointed from Paris. During this time French anti-clericalism threatened the confessional schools in the region in breach of the French/
Papal concordat of 1801 something the Germans, despite Bismarck's Kulturkampf, had generally respected, and which led to growing anti-French feelings.
From 1940, during World War II, the territory was again split, this time between Baden and the Westmark. It is estimated that 18,000 Alsatians died fighting for the Germans on the eastern front. After World War II the region was
finally returned to France.
Thus, the war memorials of most significance to the generations associated
with Robert Schuman and his family would have included many fallen men of
the borders' those who died for France in 1871, for Germany in World War I,
and for both the Axis and Allied powers in World War II.4 A monument to all
three generations stands in Scy-Chazelles,5 opposite the village church.
In 1902/03 Robert Schuman graduated from an additional year of high
school in Metz, thereby facilitating the study of law at German universities.
Biographers have noted that this choice of profession released him from allegiance to any particular state' a freedom not available had he chosen to be a
teacher or a civil servant (Beamter).6 Beginning his law studies in Bonn in
1904, and with the customary digressions at a number of universities (Munich,
Berlin and Strasbourg), he undertook the first Staatsexamen (state examination)7
in 1908, completed a doctorate summa cum laude in 1910, and passed the second Staatsexamen in 1912. During his student days he was greatly inspired by
his membership of the Unitas fraternity,8 by those he met at the Benedictine
4
5
6
7

Lcker and Seitlinger, op cit., p. 14.


The place of Schuman's death in 1963.
Lcker and Seitlinger, op. cit., p. 15.
State examination for admission to practice as a lawyer.

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Robert Schuman Blessed Father of Europe

143

abbey Maria Laach,9 and by his membership in the Grres-Gesellschaft (Grres


Society), part of the avant-garde of German Catholicism. These three connections remained strong until his death and led to a deep intellectual and spiritual
formation in the heart of Europe.10 At twenty-three, he also attended the canonization of the Lorraine-born Saint Joan of Arc in 1909.11
The death of his mother in a street accident in 1911 affected him greatly and
led to serious thoughts of joining the Catholic Priesthood, but at the urging of
friends and associates he decided to remain a layman and pursue a legal career
in Metz with his associates and friends Georges Ditsch and Edmond Moppert.
He became a specialist in civil and commercial law.12
Schuman spent much of the war engaged in tedious civil service in Boulay.
During this time he remained very engaged in local Church life; in 1913 Bishop
Benzler appointed him leader of the Youth Association. Amongst other things,
he also worked as general secretary of the Catholic newspaper Le Lorrain, and
played an important role in the organization of the 1913 Catholic Congress
(Katholikentag) in Metz. As a leader in the Union Populaire, a men's society
associated with the Katholischen Mnner-Verein Deutschlands (German Men's
Association), Schuman spoke often on religious and political matters.
2. Between the Wars

In 1918 Schuman became a member of the Metz Conseil Municipal and in


1919 a member of the French National Assembly for the Union Republicaine
Lorraine (URL), a position he held until his arrest by the Gestapo in 1940.
The anti-Bolshevik URL was especially concerned with the preservation Lorraine's unique characteristics during the reintegration into greater France. Its
three major strategies were focused upon (1) the necessary adaptation of Lorraine's laws to those of France with appropriate exceptions and all important
8 The most Catholic of the then fraternities and under the patronage of St Thomas Aquinas.
9 Where gathered a group especially concerned with a reform of the liturgy under
Theodor Abele. Schuman was still speaking of Maria Laach even as late as 1959,
during his term as President of the European Parliament. The cloister, founded in
1093, is still extant.
10 For example, the Rheinische Katholikentag (Catholic conference, held every two
years) concerned itself in depth with the Christian roots of Europe. Konrad Adenauer
was also in attendance.
11 Schuman went to Rome in 1920 to celebrate the anniversary of this event; he
was also involved in the celebrations at Domremy-la-Pucelle to commemorate 500th
anniversary of St Joan's victory.
12 Michel Pierre Chelini, Robert Schuman et l'ide europenne, Cloture du process
diocesain en vue de la beatification du serviteur de Dieu, Robert Schuman, Diocese de
Metz, Service Communication, 2004.

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144

Patrick Quirk

transitional periods, (2) freedom of religion, in particular for confessional


schools, and (3) introduction of French classes in a way that showed consideration for local and regional differences. As time passed, Robert Schuman became more prominent in representing Lorraine through his activities as Parliamentary-Secretary, Vice President and eventually President of the Commission
d'Alsace Lorraine. This Parliamentary committee formed an important subcommittee, again with Schuman in the lead, to oversee the very demanding
task of reintegrating the legal systems. There can be no doubt this was a valuable rehearsal for the later forms of harmonization that would be required to
integrate the laws of sovereign European countries and the Communities they
would form.
The task of preserving religious independence was again threatened by gallican doctrines, and the language question (French or German) was also a bone
of contention. Schuman and his twenty colleagues from Alsace-Lorraine managed to retain a specials status for the province, and were victorious on the language issue. He also played a major role in the establishment of the local Christian trade union (Confdration Francaise des Travailleurs Chrtiens (C.F.T.C)
as a bulwark against the communists.
The 1930s also saw Schuman associate with Don Luigi Sturzo, Marc Sagnier,
and the Nobel prizewinners Arisitide Briand and Gustav Streseman advocates
of the Mercato Commune (Common market) of Europe that was discussed at
the 1925 Bierville congress of Christian democrats. Unfortunately these ideas
were soon to fall under the weight of the events of the late 1920s and early
30s. Schuman's calls for decentralization of French bureaucracy were also ignored, but his advocacy of them is worth repeating:
All of France suffers under an excess of bureaucratic centrism. As a supporter of
an intrigue-free and efficient administration that is oriented to the particular needs
of every region, I demand a reform, above all for the province of Lorraine, whose
return to France presents a myriad of moral and practical problems. Those most
affected should play the greatest role in their solution. The reform of administration
must have as its goal an effective decentralization and simplification of administrative methodology thereby allowing the implementation of local initiatives.13

In October 1936 Shuman gave an important address to the Association of


Luxembourg students at the Sorbonne in Paris on the topic The current crisis
of state and today's younger generation. The speech highlighted what he saw
as the current crisis of statehood in Europe. The roots of the crisis are based in
the embitterment of citizens' love for their own nations, he said. The denunciation of international treaties and large economic difficulties only exacerbate
the problems. He saw no solution in radical liberalism, which he specifically
rejected, nor in the spirit of bureaucracy, but was prepared to accept a certain
13

Lcker and Seitlinger, op. cit., p. 31.

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Robert Schuman Blessed Father of Europe

145

arranging hand (ordnende Hand) in the interests of the welfare of the state.
Schuman warned against economic autarky, which he dubbed a cancer
(Krebsgeschwr) with anemic consequences, as well as the menace of excessive protectionism in conjunction with weak and fluctuating democracy. The
combination of these factors leads easily to dictatorship, he said. A strong state
must play its role as the broker of sovereignty.14
In closing he came back to the theme of the state as guarantor of the moral
life of its citizens. As the government assumes more responsibility, so must its
intellectual and moral authority be seen to increase, for such defines its success.
I appeal to you young people: don't allow the enthusiasm and idealism of your
age to wane.
3. Arrest and Escape 19401944

The events of 1939 and 1940 are well known. Schuman moved to Bordeaux
on 14th June 1940, along with the Assemble Nationale and the government of
Paul Reynaud. Schuman was one of the 80 members who voted in favor of the
short-lived cease-fire proposed by Ptain. Alsace-Lorraine fell under military
rule on 2 August 1940, and Schuman returned home, despite the offer of a
ministry in Ptain's government. His arrest by the Gestapo followed soon after,
on 14 September 1940.
Schuman was arrested first in Metz and then in Neustadt and enjoyed considerable freedom of correspondence and movement for the duration of his incarceration. There was an abundance of time to read, and to meditate. Various
attempts were made to win him over to the German side, all of which were
rebuffed. His correspondence and conversation indicates a remarkable hope,
even in the event that the Nazis were in the end victorious: Power has never
long triumphed over law he said to his friend Georges Ditsch, resentment and
hate against the Germans cannot continue [even should they win] rather, and
without forgetting the past, they must be reintegrated into the free world.15 He
was convinced that when freedom returned, a way must be found to avoid any
repetition of the catastrophe; lasting solutions could only be found in a democratically initiated united Europe. Even in the conflict's darkest hours, he
maintained that Christians must never become resigned to their fate, never
buried alive, but must await the finger of Providence to show the way.16 In his
mind, Schuman was preparing for the future.

14 Schuman likely also had in mind the associated political isolation of National
Socialism and racial isolation of the final solution.
15 Letter from Georges Ditsch (18981994) quoting Schuman, cited in Lcker and
Seitlinger, op. cit., pp. 3738.

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In August 1942, with the aid of friends and a false passport, Robert Schuman
made his way across the demarcation line into unoccupied France and through
the doors of the ancient Benedictine monastery of St Martin at Ligig, southwest of Poitiers.17 A few days later he departed for Lyon, more monasteries,
Beaupont, and eventually Tournus, about 80 kilometers north of Lyon. It was
here that he met up with General Jean de Lattre de Tasigny, whose tank division was to free Alsace-Lorraine. Schuman became his political advisor and
accompanied him in the recapture of Metz near the war's end.
4. Foundation of the Popular Republican Movement

In November 1944 Schuman was approached by Rn Lejeune and asked to


help found a section of the (essentially Catholic) Christian Democratic party,
the Mouvement Rpublicain Populaire (MRP')18 for the Metz/Mosel regions.
Schuman agreed and Lejeune was to become Schuman's personal secretary until 1958. The MRP, a product of the French Resistance, was to become an important counterweight to the Communists and the Socialists (calling themselves
Marxists') but a failed attempt to co-opt de Gaulle, and de Gaulle's aloof resignation, led to a tripartite paralysis' in French politics which only began to
diminish in January 1947 with the technocratic Monnet Plan for economic reconstruction.19
As President of the local MRP, Schuman was chosen to attend the Assemble Nationale to draw up a new constitution for France.20 He was to remain a
favorite representative of the Mosellnder in Paris until 1962.
At the instigation of his political opponent, President Vincent Auriol, Schuman became Prime Minister of France in November 1947, only to resign in
July 1948 amidst outward wrangling over the military budget and, more profoundly, over Socialist attempts to nationalize the confessional schools.21
During this immediate post-war period, Schuman was also very active in discussions on the future of Europe, along with other Christian-democratic leaders
16 Letter of Robert Schuman, 2 November 1941, quoted in Lcker and Seitlinger,
op. cit., p. 38.
17 Founded around 360 by St Martin of Tours, one hundred and fifty years earlier
than St Benedict's Monte Cassino.
18 Popular Republican Movement.
19 The key to this Plan was the transfer of much power to a small group of bureaucrats. This approach was to continue for many years, see William I. Hitchcock, The
Struggle for Europe (New York: Anchor Books, 2003), p. 76.
20 Amongst other things, the Fourth Republic gave women the vote for the first
time.
21 The Socialists gave no notice of their intention to vote the budget down, despite
being partners in a ruling coalition.

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such as Konrad Adenauer, Alcide de Gaspari (both friends of Schuman's since


the 1920s), Don Luigi Sturzo and Marc Sangniers. Several conferences led to
the formation of the Nouvelles Equipes Internationales, the European Christian
Democrats, and associated political parties. An important four-day meeting of
these groups was also convened at Luxembourg in early 1948 to deal solely
with German Question. Drawing on an earlier Lucerne Declaration (1944),
the conference called for a rejection of the dogma' of absolute state sovereignty and the political participation (Teilnahme) of Germans and other European peoples inside a federal structure as the only long-term solution.22
Adenauer gave an inspiring closing address that canvassed the issues of European unity, of the need to fight unbridled materialism (Materialismus) both
Nazi and Marxist, i. e. both past and future and of the obligation of Christian
politicians to solidarity and to an ever more intensive international cooperation.23 (One wonders if a young Pole wasn't listening in the wings?)
5. Foreign Minister

Schuman became French foreign minister in July 1948, immediately following his resignation from the Primeministership. His immediate concerns were
with Germany, and a dangerously aggressive Soviet Union.
In a key speech given at Potiers in September, Schuman called for the building up of a federal structure' to help rebuild Europe and for the former concepts of absolute sovereignty to be put aside. He made explicit reference to the
necessary rehabilitation of Germany and to the need for Christian forgiveness'.
Such sentiments were, for their time, quite remarkable.
Schuman's leadership in the Assemble Nationale was instrumental in allowing Germany to enter the newly formed Council of Europe and more generally
in aiding its rehabilitation into the community of nations. Thus, in September
1949 Dean Acheson, U.S. Secretary of State urged Schuman to take the initiative in bringing Germany more tightly into Western Europe, and away from
potential Soviet influence. The fact that Adenauer was in the ascendancy was
crucial, as was his good relationship with Schuman. Acheson wrote to Schuman:
I believe that we shall probably never have any more democratic or more receptive atmosphere in Germany in which to work than we have at the present moment.
Unless we move rapidly the political atmosphere will deteriorate and we shall be

22 Jumping forward 60 years, one of the hotter debates over the new Treaty
(Constitution) for the EU concerned the inclusion of the words federal union in
the Preamble. The UK has so far prevailed and the term has been excluded.
23 Lcker and Seitlinger, op. cit., p. 62.

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faced with much more difficult and dangerous personalities in the German Government.24

Schuman acted upon this suggestion by adopting Jean Monnet's proposal,


drafted during April 1950, for the placing of all Franco-German coal and steel
production under a single High Authority whose decisions will be binding on
member countries. The famous Schuman Declaration' (more a proposal) was
made on May 9, 1950 at a press conference in the salon de l'Horloge at the
Quai d'Orsay. May 9 is now celebrated as Europe Day.'25
6. Death and Cause for Beatification

Robert Schuman died at Scy-Chazelles, near Metz, on 4 September 1963,


aged 77. The diocesan phase of Robert Schuman's cause for beatification concluded in late May 2004; an abundance of documentation is now with the Congregation for Sainthood Causes in Rome. To date the Bishop of Metz, Pierre
Rafin, is reported to know of no miraculous occurrence ascribed to his intercession.26 Certainly the mere fact that Schuman's life has been deemed worthy of
such attention gives cause for hope for the rehabilitation of the political office.
He is said to have exercised the mandate of representative deputy like an apostolate.27 His life and example as secular monk could perhaps also be viewed
as a heralding the developments brought forth by the Second Vatican Council,
especially in such documents as Gaudium et Spes.
II. Robert Schuman Midwife to European Unity
As William Hitchcock has rightly noted, the months following the end of the
war were among Europe's worst.28 Yet out of the rubble, a large number of
international organizations were formed in the immediate post-war period.
These included the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (1947),29
the Organization for European Economic Cooperation (OEEC)(1948),30 the
Western European Union (1948), the Council of Europe (1949),31 the North
Quoted in Hitchcock, op. cit., p. 151.
Decision taken during the Milan Summit of EU leaders in 1985.
26 Beatification Process for Robert Schuman Clears One Phase, Zenit News
Agency, May 31, 2004, ZE04053121. Any miracle must be judged to be rapid, complete, lasting and inexplicable, according to present medical-scientific knowledge.
27 Diocese of Metz, Service Communication, 2004.
28 Hitchcock, op. cit., p. 1.
29 One of the five regional commissions of the U.N.
30 Later to become the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development
(OECD); see H. Steiger, An Evaluation of Legal Development on a Regional Basis:
The Search for European Unity, 22 Ohio St. L.J. 496 at 497 ff (1961).
24
25

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Robert Schuman Blessed Father of Europe

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Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) (1949), and the European Payments


Union (1950).
Observers were sometimes confused by this multitude of new agencies; as
the U.S. Senate noted in 1952, [O]ne cannot but be impressed by the organizational confusion.32 Certainly this was exacerbated by the disparate memberships, purposes and fields of operation of the various participants, and doubtless
by the general disruption of civil society after the cessation of hostilities.
1. Coal and Steel Community

Schuman's Plan was in essence an invitation to Europe to cede sovereignty


over their coal and steel industries. Six states agreed and a supra-national
Community was born. A heady convergence of historical, diplomatic, strategic, and cultural factors brought this about. In political terms, British MP Harold MacMillan highlighted the novelty of the Plan:
To the great majority of Europeans, by far the most significant aspect of M. Schuman's initiative is the political. It is not, in its essentials, a purely economic or
industrial conception; it is a grand design for a new Europe; it is not just a piece of
convenient machinery; it is a revolutionary, almost mystical, conception.33

Pressing economic factors were also at hand. Professor Pascal Fontaine summarized this accurately in an essay recently published by the Commission
(2000):
On top of the political deadlock came economic problems. Steelmaking capacity in
the various European countries seemed set to create a crisis of overproduction. Demand was dwindling, prices were falling and the signs were that producers, faithful
to the traditions of the forgemasters of the inter-war period, would reconstitute a
cartel in order to restrict competition. In the midst of the reconstruction phase, the
European economies could not stand by and leave their basic industries to speculation or organized shortages.34

As things turned out, an initial American policy of breaking cartels gave way
to a much more moderate restructuring firms like Thyssen and Krupp survived intact.35
31 On the proposal of Sir Winston Churchill. The Council of Europe was the author
of the European Convention on Human Rights but remained subject to the sovereignties' of its members.
32 Senate Report, 82nd Cong., 2nd Sess., Doc. No. 90 (Washington, 1952), p. 44, at
p. 13, note 10.
33 See http://www.liv-coll.ac.uk/pa09/europetrip/brussels/schuman.htm. The author
has been unable to locate another source for this quote and would be grateful to any
reader able to provide one.
34 P. Fontaine, A new idea for Europe The Schuman declaration 19502000,
(2 ed), (Luxembourg: Office for Official Publications of the European Communities,
2000) p. 10.

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The original members of the ECSC were France, West Germany, Italy, Belgium, The Netherlands, and Luxembourg. At the time, these countries produced
around 13 percent of the world's coal and 17 percent of its steel.36 All members of this pool of nations were at least partly dependent on imports of coal or
of steel.37 The Community's first task was to remove trade barriers between its
members in coal, coke, steel, pig iron, and scrap iron. In terms of its institutions, it was to become a model for the European Economic Community (EEC)
of 1957 and the European Atomic Energy Community of 1958 (Euratom): there
were two governing organs (a High Authority [Commission] and a Council of
Ministers) and two controlling organs (a common [parliamentary] Assembly
and a Court of Justice).38 On its face, the ECSC was to last only fifty years
and, after assumption of its responsibilities by other bodies, it was formally dissolved in 2002.
In terms of international law, the ECSC was new in that it involved an effective transfer of sovereignty in a particular area (coal and steel) from respective
nation states to a new supra-national body with the power to take enforcement action against Member States and their citizens.39 In this way it falls half
way between the federal and the international.40
Arguments against the ECSC came from several quarters. First from the former private cartels and leading industrialists who had in no small way contributed to the failure of the Treaty of Versailles.41 These were not successful. For
Schuman's part, during his time in the French Parliament he had patiently pursued and uncovered corruption in the Lorraine steel industry and so was used to
dealing with these aspects of the debate. There were also perceived benefits in
the modernization that would flow from opening up the protected French economy to German (and other) competition.42 Second, nationalistic sentiments
were strongly expressed along with the fear of German dominance.43 Thirdly,
there were concerns over possible unemployment as a result of closing coal
Hitchcock, op. cit., p. 34.
The figures were 30% and 49% respectively for the United States. See J.
McKesson, The Schuman Plan, (1952) LXVII Political Science Quarterly, 20.
37 Ibid.
38 Heinhard Steiger, An evaluation of legal development on a regional basis: the
search for European unity, 22 Ohio St. L.J. 495, 500 (1962).
39 H. Hahn, International and supranational public authorities, 26 Law and Contemp. Probs. 638, 640 (1961).
40 Some features remain purely international.
41 Mostly through inflationary actions. See W. McDougall, Political Economy versus National Sovereignty: French Structures for German Economic Integration after
Versailles, (1979) The Journal of Modern History, Vol. 51, No. 1, 4, 12.
42 A.W. DePorte, Europe between the Superpowers the enduring balance, (Yale,
1979), p. 222. See also John Gillingham, Coal, steel, and the rebirth of Europe, 1945
1955 (Cambridge, U.K., 1991).
35
36

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Robert Schuman Blessed Father of Europe

151

mines in Belgium and France, and steel mills in Italy. Fourth, there were voices
(notably Britain) opposing not so much the idea of integration, but its mode of
implementation and the required sacrifice of sovereignty.
2. Schuman's Vision Achieved or Deceived?

Distilling Schuman's vision' after fifty years is not easy, and attempts to
extrapolate his opinions across half a century may prove far-fetched and of
little value. Nevertheless, three things at least can be said about his approach.
First, a Schuman-inspired Europe would be a Christian-inspired Europe. Not
necessarily expressed in written documents or Constitutions (though there can
be little doubt about where he would have stood on the recent tussle over mentioning Christianity in the Constitutional Treaty) but most certainly though policy and in particular through political parties. This vision has almost certainly
fallen short of what he would have hoped for when founding the MRP in Metz.
In a Pentecost 2003 letter to Cardinal Christoph Schnborn, Pope John Paul II
noted the urgency of a renewal in political life:
The common journey towards the future will be all the easier once Europeans remember their Christian roots and in them find the parameters for their social and
political action. Europe urgently needs to recover its Christian identity and live it
anew; only then will it be able to communicate to the world the values on which
peace among peoples, social justice and international solidarity are founded.44

Second, Schuman was insistent on subsidiarity and solidarity as counterweights to excessive bureaucracy. Two sentences from the Declaration itself are
especially important in this regard:
Europe will not be made all at once, or according to a single plan. It will be built
through concrete achievements which first create a de facto solidarity.45

Thus we see no five or ten year plan, no technocratic ambition, no ostentatious attempt to outstrip actual accomplishments. His vision was for peace,
security, and Christian brotherhood (Verbrderung der europischen Vlker).46
It was not limited to building the city of Man.

43 By this time it was clear that there would be a strong German state in the center
of Europe. See A.W. DePorte, op. cit., p. 222.
44 Letter of John Paul II to Cardinal Christoph Schnborn, Archbishop of Vienna
on the occasion of the day of Central European Catholics, Pentecost 2003. See http://
www.vatican.va/holy_father/john_paul_ii/letters/2003/documents/hf_jpii_let_20030611
_katholikentag-2003_en.html.
45 Schuman Declaration of 9 May, 1950.
46 Geatano Martino, President of the European Parliament in Gedenken an Robert
Schuman, published by the European Parliament, 16 September, 1963, p. 11.

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Finally, Schuman was firmly set against autarky. The state centrism required
for autarky was and remains in direct conflict with the Catholic conception of
subsidiarity, and Schuman saw this more clearly than most. Moreover, in Schuman's vision the ECSC was to serve a purely economic role: The Authority
will not fulfill any political functions. Its task will be exclusively economic.47
Granting these three points, it is also worth noting the obvious: that there is
much of the modern-day EU for which Robert Schuman cannot be held responsible. Beginning with the EEC of 1957,48 the merger of the three communities
in 1967, the move to elections for the European Parliament in 1979, Maastricht
and the EU of 1992, and the advent of the Euro in 1999, the question of Schuman's level of responsibility' for a child gone wrong (if that be so) will always
be debatable.
Schuman is not the lone Father of Europe'. There have been many others
that have fostered its conception and growth and were doubtless in the mind of
John Paul II when, in Ecclesia in Europa,49 he urged the laity to model themselves on the so-called Fathers of Europe' as the builders of tomorrow's European society, establishing it on a firm spiritual foundation.'50 Schuman's
spiritual legacy will thus be his most significant, regardless of the results of his
cause for sainthood.
His vision was to build a practical peace using the human resources available. Or in the words of Giorgio Salina, the Italian president of the Convention
of Christians Pro-Europe, to construct a Europe of peoples and not one of
foreign ministries, bankers and merchants valuing [their] . . . roots, traditions
and history.51
Appendix
Extracts from Robert Schuman's memoirs: Pour l'Europe
Europe, before being a military alliance or an economic entity, must be a cultural
community in the highest sense of the term.'
The Europeans will be saved if they are aware of their solidarity in the face of a
common danger . . . the current fears will be the immediate cause of European uni47 John A. McKesson, The Schuman Plan, Political Science Quarterly, Vol. 67,
No. 1 (Mar., 1952), 18, 28.
48 Der Gemeinsame Markt ist zwar nicht das Verdienst Schumans, aber er wre
ohne ihn nicht zu denken The Common Market is not attributable to Schuman,
but without him it would surely be unthinkable. Geatano Martino, op. cit., p. 10.
49 Ecclesia in Europa, para. 41.
50 Quoting the Synod of Bishops Second Special Assembly for Europe, Instrumentum Laboris, No. 82: L'Osservatore Romano, 6 August 1999, 16.
51 AENTI, June 18, 2004.

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Robert Schuman Blessed Father of Europe

153

fication, but not its raison d'tre. Depending on the circumstances surrounding its
creation, Europe will be more or less complete. Will it ever be complete? No-one
can say. This is not a reason for delaying the effort to achieve unification. Action is
better than resignation and the desire for perfection is a poor excuse for inaction.'
Let this idea of a reconciled, united and strong Europe now be the watchword for
the young generations who wish to serve a human race which has finally thrown off
the bonds of hate and fear and which is learning once again, after seemingly endless rifts, what Christian brotherhood means.'
In our minds, European policy is in no way at odds with the patriotic ideal we all
share . . . the nation has a role to play vis--vis its own citizens, but also, and just as
much, vis--vis other nations. It cannot therefore retreat into the first of those
roles.'
The unity of Europe will not be achieved solely or principally by European institutions; their establishment will be an intellectual journey . . . Europe cannot and must
not remain an economic and technocratic undertaking. It must have a soul, awareness of its historical affinities and its present and future responsibilities and political
determination in the service of a single human ideal.'

Summary
The diocesan stage of Robert Schuman's cause for beatification concluded in February 2004 and is now under consideration in Rome. This paper will revisit Schuman's
vision for Europe. It begins with a survey of Schuman's life and times from before
World War I to his appointment as French Foreign Minister after World War II. It
then briefly discusses his death and cause for beatification. His role in the formation
of the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC) is considered, along with the
Communities that grew out of this initial grouping. In conclusion the paper considers
whether Schuman's vision has been achieved or deceived.

Zusammenfassung
Der dizesane Seligsprechungsproze fr Robert Schuman wurde im Februar 2004
abgeschlossen und ist nunmehr in Rom anhngig. Dieser Beitrag will Schumans Vision fr Europa nachzeichnen. Es beginnt mit einer bersicht ber Schumans Leben
und seine Zeit von den Jahren vor dem Ersten Weltkrieg bis zu seiner Ernennung
zum franzsischen Auenminister nach dem Zweiten Weltkrieg. Dann folgen Hinweise zu seinem Tode und zu den Grnden fr den Seligsprechungsproze. Im zweiten Teil wird seine Rolle bei der Bildung der Europischen Gemeinschaft fr Kohle
und Stahl sowie derjenigen Gemeinschaften, die aus diesem ersten Zusammenschlu
hervorgegangen sind, dargestellt. Abschlieend wird die Frage errtert, ob Schumans
Vision ihr Ziel erreichte oder nicht.

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Leibniz, Vico and Alternative Modernities


By Virgil Nemoianu
I.
Globalizing modernity was a process that took a long time coming. Usually
we take c. 1500 as a starting point; however earlier events may well be considered starting points, for instance the advent of Christianity (with its universalist
implications of faith and salvation), or else the adoption of a numerical/alphabetic organization of the human mind, or even the very development of the
language. These and others have been suggested as starting points and motors,
and, at the limit, it would not be entirely absurd to argue that such a (globalizing) state and condition was perhaps already inscribed in the very genes of
mankind, or at least that it coincided with the appearance of historical human
societies. I cannot allow myself here such radical speculations, but I will readily admit that we are faced with a very long process of preparation and accumulation. I feel on safer ground speaking, as we all habitually do, about modernization and globalization as about processes that begin with the many
important changes around 1500, that ripen during the 18th century Enlightenment movement, and that are fully mature by 1800 or 1815, further growing
and expanding relentlessly after those dates.
Inevitably definitions differ, but conventionally most scholars understand by
modernity a phenomenon in which the following features are merged: rationalization, alienation, urbanization, accelerated movement (both historical and
physical), emphasis on communication and information, on immediate presence,
individualism and self-invention, equalization and homogeneity, contractual or
transactional human relations, utopian pressures toward progress, and a few
others.
Obviously this new mode of existence came to differ radically from the ways
of life of the historical tradition, not only those of the West, but those of virtually all other cultures known to us in the last 6000 years or more. The binding ties between individuals and groups tend to become loosened or disappear
entirely: clans, tribes, nations, generations, eventually families. Religion is endangered or at least in disagreement with the prevailing state of affairs on a
planetary level. The local, the various kinds of rootedness, the multiplicity of
languages and dialects see themselves diminished. There is a considerable im-

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156

Virgil Nemoianu

poverishment of the subjective, of interiority, of emotions, of feelings, of many


forms of imagination.
The consequences of this radical change of the human condition were often
favorable and this explains its strength and attractiveness. The standards of material life were raised exponentially, in a manner that would have been hard or
impossible to predict. Medical care, housing, food and clothing, physical satisfactions, access to education improved enormously, beyond any expectations.
The freedom of the individual person, the options and choices for the future
were incredibly expanded. Unfettered mobility became the rule, rather than the
exception in this new world. Discriminations were and are being weakened or
erased. These things were and are true not for all, but for an unceasingly growing number of people, at all levels of Western societies, and very fast, on all
parts of the planet.
Nevertheless, simultaneously, great dissatisfaction and anxiety emerged in all
parts of society. Much of this was in the nature of outright criticism and revolt,
often however it expressed itself merely through what I would call contrarian
manifestations.
Thus for instance many sectors of the ideological range, from left to right,
from radical to conservative, complain about the increasing or total loss of ethical values, about greed, selfishness, lack of compassion and caring, lack of respect, about the neglect of the elderly and the abuse of the weakest. A widespread feeling of emptiness, of absence is recorded by specialists, as well as by
casual observers. (Thus Pope John Paul II spoke in the first half of 2004 to
American bishops about the dangers of a soulless society.) Uniformity, homogenization, repetitiveness, alienation are recognized as evils or threats from left
to right across society. Community is nervously sought in the most different
forms: from virtual groups on the internet to political and social organizations
focused on various causes, all the way to youth gangs who ironically believe
they can find in violence and lawlessness some satisfaction of their needs for
structure, discipline, order, community, for what is called in German Geborgenheit. Tradition is chased after in the cultivation of dialects and special idioms, in
local traditions, even while (particularly in the West) wave after wave of immigration waters down or makes impossible the very exercise of these traditions.
Drugs, unheard of pandemics, pollution, natural threats are recorded and widely
deplored, though they are rather obviously the consequence of the way of life
which is approved by many, perhaps by most people, sometimes passionately.
Weapons of mass destruction are present on a mass scale. The thirst for the
ideal, the numinous, for transcendence, interiority, and imagination can be detected behind the rise of strange myths, beliefs, sects, hybrid pagan magic rituals all, ultimately substitutes of religion. It should be recognized that in
most parts of the world (not least in the West) a variety of forms of religious

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Leibniz, Vico and Alternative Modernities

157

persecution increase year after year. It is equally true that, probably as a response, religious fanaticism sometimes becomes a driving force, a translation of
the disagreements of larger and smaller groups with the prevalence of what we
called modernization. The lack of an intimate communion with nature seeks to
find a compensation in ecological intolerance and in the intensive cult of
health. Eroticism becomes the dominant principle in many lives and, while losing its traditional natural role, comes to subsume numerous other virtues, thus
(intentionally or not) lowering them.
This list could become considerably longer, but the symptoms enumerated
(which vary from case to case, from one human sphere to the other) should
suffice. A recent book1 neatly summarizes in its title the existing problems. We
live in a culture of critique, another book affirms.2
What proposals for remedy do we find on the table? Surprisingly few. On the
one hand we find everywhere examples of wholesale negation, of radical opposition to the modern mode of existence, often, but not always, based on either
extreme left or extreme right views. This comprehensive negation may look
toward some utopian alternative future, or perhaps look toward a return to the
past, or to both simultaneously. On the other hand, there is the hope that simply
tinkering with the system, resorting to technical repairs, will be enough. There
are also those diehards, who are convinced that all existing problems result
from an insufficient application of the Enlightenment project, who propose that
a hardening of the line will take care of most existing problems. Finally, we
should not forget that a sizeable number of our contemporaries, particularly of
the upper classes and their intellectual dependants, either ignore the problems,
or try to justify and approve them as expressions of progress and of beneficial
evolution.
Hardly anybody thinks of looking back at the very roots of our current situation. My suggestion will be that a serious examination of the philosophical
frameworks and competing Weltanschauungen of the past and of the present
might provide us, not necessarily with definitive answers and solutions, but certainly with some ideas and outlines, and also remind us of values that are currently neglected or marginalized. I submit that such a retrospective analysis can
reform and improve, at least to some extent, the present state of affairs, by
allowing us to look at it more objectively and with better perspective.
A caveat first. I do not count myself among those who think that historical
developments are due exclusively to changes in philosophical and ideological
doctrines. Historical changes and advances are a complex thing, they cannot be
1 Gregg Easterbrook, The Progress Paradox. How Life Gets Better While People
Feel Worse. New York, Random House, 2003.
2 Kevin MacDonald, The Culture of Critique. Westport, Conn. and London, 1998.

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reduced to just one cause, or even to a single set of reasons. For instance it is
not true that economic motives are the unique driving force in history, and this
older Marxist conception is nowadays largely discarded. The best explanations
of advances (or retreats) in human history are those that take into account a
multiplicity of pressures, in degrees that are themselves modified from situation
to situation, from epoch to epoch. Such multiple causes interact, collaborate,
enter in conflict with each other. (One way of putting this truth is to say that
God disposes of innumerable tools, and uses them in unexpected ways to direct
human existence.) Nevertheless, we can affirm without much fear of error, that
intellectual horizons always play a certain role in human history and life, sometimes a decisive one, sometimes at least by introducing qualifications, by providing important nuances to the events. In any case without these intellectual
frameworks we cannot imagine too well any individual or social functioning. It
is in this spirit that my ensuing comments ought to be understood.
II.
To repeat, most commentators agree that, both intellectually and socioeconomically, modernization picks up steam around 1700, at the edge of the rationalist age and that of outright Enlightenment. To understand the growth of modernization and globalization it is therefore highly important to remember always
that the roots of both Enlightenment and rationalism are to be found in late
Scholasticism and in the period when Scholasticism sheds (almost entirely) its
religious and traditionalist vestments and preserves only its own rationalist
structures. The turning point is to be found in the works of Ren Descartes and
John Locke, although in different ways Lord Bacon, Thomas Hobbes, Niccolo
Macchiavelli and a score of others had been contributing factors. It is not really
the case that such people discarded entirely the idea of the divine or the values
of the past. However, the unabashed and loud emphasis on experience in human
cognition, on the tribunal of reason in ethical, scientific, and even theological
matters constituted nothing short of a revolution. It was widely accepted as
such and seen as inevitable; also, very often, as beneficial.
The question that arose soon in the minds of a surprising number of philosophers and of other intellectuals was whether this turning point meant a complete separation from the traditions of classical Antiquity and of Christian medieval thinking, or whether, on the contrary, the theorizings of the past were still
of some relevance and interest. A surprisingly large number of thinkers of the
late 17th and early 18th centuries seemed eager to accept Cartesianism and/or
Lockean empiricism only while qualifying it, sometimes in deep-going fashion,
with critical elements, with suggestions of improvement, cautionings against
radical applications and implications, attempts of reconciliation with the agetested philosophical traditions and theological values of the Western world. I

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will briefly review what I think is nothing short of a whole school (albeit not
in a literal sense) of critical Cartesianism on the Continent, and will just mention a few (implicit or explicit) responses to Locke and others in the English
world.
The common feature of the Continental writers was, to put it simply, a desire
to take advantage of or preserve the gains in insight and analysis brought about
by Descartes (and to a lesser extent Locke), but to adjust them to a continuity
with the Classical and Medieval tradition, to smooth away, as it were, the asperities and, indeed, to build bridges between the one and the other. Among these
thinkers one may mention Malebranche, who pursued theological purposes with
a Cartesian methodology, Pascal, who wrestled mightly with the dualities of a
rationalist/scientific epistemology and the emotional implications of a traditional ontology, Spinoza, who reached the goal of pantheism out of a desire to
combine religion with reason, Archbishop Fnelon, who strove to forge a
Catholic view, which, while remaining fully orthodox, could be flexible, rational and sentimental, in ways which would allow it to be inserted in modernity without effort, along with the two that I will dwell upon in a little more
detail: namely Leibniz and Vico. In England we would speak about Shaftesbury, perhaps Hutcheson, certainly Bishop Berkeley and Dr Samuel Johnson, as
well as of their predecessors, the so-called Cambridge Platonists.
III.
Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz was, by chance, by Divine Providence, or by personal intention and will, one of the greatest polymaths and one of the truly
universal men that ever lived, in a class with Leonardo, Michelangelo, and
Goethe. He learned Greek and Latin by himself, as a child, and began to read
the great literary and later philosophical classics, he moved to modern philosophy around age 15, and obtained a doctorate from the University of Nrnberg at
age 20. His work includes mathematics (he was an inventor of differential calculus at the same time with, and separately from, Isaac Newton), mechanics (he
invented windmills, clocks, lamps, hydraulic presses, submarines), geology,
jurisprudence (his first field of study had been law), history, politics (he was in
continuous correspondence with various European heads of state, and a chief
advisor to Prince Eugene of Savoy, for a while a ruling force in the huge Habsburg Empire), linguistics (among the many languages he knew, he was acquainted with Chinese language, culture, philosophy, and he tried to create a
universal, unified system of communication), logic (by mathematical means he
continued toward binary calculation sketching out one of the earliest versions of
the computer in the footsteps of Pascal, of whose work in this field he was
apparently aware), and of course, first and foremost, religion and philosophy.

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Leibniz was born and died a Lutheran. Nevertheless throughout his life he
was continuously engaged in plans and in practical activities meant to result in
the reconciliation of the two Western branches of Christianity. This has to be
considered in connection with the extremely comprehensive and rounded image
of knowledge as a whole briefly described above. In fact Leibniz's whole philosophy must be understood in connection with his above-mentioned universalism, in other words with his exceptional desire to include everything, and to
understand all reality as organically interconnected.
That Leibniz was unwilling to submit any credible worldview to mechanical
reductions is to be seen in his ample response to Locke in New Essays on
Human Understanding (written in 1703, although published only posthumously) in which he argued that inborn ideas populate the mind that Locke
had thought of as a desertic tabula rasa; more flexible than others, Leibniz
was willing to think of those as virtualities and/or proleptic inclinations. The
same desire motivates, I believe, Leibniz's key theory of the principle of sufficient reason: anything existing must differ somehow qualitatively from anything
else. Other doctrines, including that of pre-established harmony between soul/
mind and body are clearly designed to defuse Cartesian dualism, but not to
deny it actually. The Monadology, a short but difficult work, in which Leibniz
tried to summarize and systematize some of his most important principles, is
precisely designed to overcome the adversity between the minimal units of the
physical and those of the spiritual existence. By the concept of substance
(with its clear Aristotelian pedigree), by the use of telelology, and by the understanding of a pyramid-like structure and arrangement of the monads (from simplest to most complex and most abundant in features) Leibniz aimed to overcome the habitual choppy discontinuity of reality in its entirety, and to illustrate what a world would look like in which natura non facit saltus.
Leibniz similarly argued strongly in favor of a continuity between nature and
grace. The City of God grows on natural foundations, according to his views.
In turn, morals emerge out of epistemology, in the sense that determination by
distinct concepts will lead to better moral consequences (the good) than morals
determined by confused perceptions; in a word, virtue is determined by reason,
Leibniz maintained in the spirit of the Enlightenment. Yet in his explanation
nature was from the beginning so built as to aspire spontaneously toward the
moral world. Besides, it is enough to peruse the views of Leibniz on the construction of justice, in order to perceive the considerable complexity of his conceptions. Leibniz recognized three levels of judicial right: jus strictum (neminem laedere: do not harm anybody), aequitas or caritas (suum cuique
tribuere), and finally pietas or probitas (i. e. following always natural and/
or divine laws). Thus for Leibniz the legal right is clearly founded upon morality and ends inevitably into it. I regard this as another good example of Leibniz's bridge-building vocation and intention.

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161

It is however in the loud and eloquent vindication of God and of His divine
creation that we fully recognize this great man's intentions. To be sure, the
principle of vindicating God in the face of reason is something in which we
recognize already the modernizing impulse and program. However, where Descartes had stopped at the recognition of the possibility of God, Leibniz speaks
for the necessity of God. He distinguishes between metaphysical evil (imperfection), physical evil (suffering), and moral evil or sin. Metaphysical evil appears as an inevitable given, as soon as we realize that God wanted to create a
finite world (an infinite one would have been a mere replication of Himself,
whereas God wanted to create otherness). Besides, Leibniz clearly likes the
Scholastic interpretation of evil as deficiency, something that does not exist in
itself, a privation, at bottom the kind of idea where the past and the coming
future intellectual theories could well collaborate, even when their grasp of the
proposition differed.
As to God, if there is something rather than nothing, then inside that possibility there resides an exigency, a necessity for existence. Leibniz translated
Plato's Ideas, or Molds, or Mothers, into Possibilities. Realities follow these,
they are contingent, they might happen or occur, or not, they are (good or bad)
just hypothetical. What is not hypothetical is the unequal distribution of goods
on earth, which is the only way of achieving innumerable degrees of being. The
principle of sufficient reason requires a dialectic of harmony and difference,
and that is why our world (including its imperfections) is the best of all possible worlds. For this later statement Leibniz found himself viciously attacked
and mocked, particularly after his death (by Voltaire for instance).
However, as time passed, Leibniz was slowly rehabilitated. His disciple
Christian Wolff (later continued by Bernhard Bolzano) wrote textbooks that
were in wide use for a century and more throughout Central Europe. Philosophers from Immanuel Kant to John McTaggart processed his thinking in different ways. Even more interestingly, very recent thinkers, partly out of the tradition of analytical philosophy, such as the Americans Saul Kripke and Nelson
Goodman, or the Frechman Michel Serres, found stimulation and support in the
work of Leibniz. I will show a little later in what ways Leibniz and others can
be useful to us in the issue of globalized modernization.
IV.
For the moment however I will turn, albeit briefly, to the work and influence
of the Napolitan philosopher of history and culture Giambattista Vico, who was
somewhat younger than Leibniz. Obscure during his lifetime (unlike Leibniz or
Fnelon, for instance), he enjoyed thereafter an increasing admiration and respect. First of all, we should note that he gave the title New Science to his

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masterpiece. This in itself indicates his desire to accept new modes of thinking
and to integrate himself in them. Indeed, Vico is a powerful fore-runner of historiography understood as a sociology of culture. What is much more important
however is that Vico placed the humanities or human sciences (we might also
say the Geistesgeschichte) above the sciences of the physical and the material.
Not only in terms of overall weight, but in highly significant and perhaps startling ways also in cognitive terms. In his work he argues from the very beginning (and this is an implicit critique of Cartesianism and of the whole powerfully evolving Enlightenment project) that we unduly give pride of place to the
mathematical and the physical: only God can fully grasp the workings of the
universe, since He is its creator. What humans can know with much more certainty is verum factum, that which they have created themselves. Thus history
can be known better by human beings than the natural sciences. He goes
farther, regarding transient human beings as essentially historical, variable from
age to age, and accessible to others, in other generations through the study of
language, myth, fable, tradition, poetry, and above all, etymology. Etymology/
metaphor is the most reliable tool for apprehension of the world, particularly
because earlier ages used poetry as the natural and pervasive mode of human
existence, not as embellishment and amusement. Fables are not less informative
and revealing of the past.
Additionally at any given point in historical evolution we can distinguish a
coherent pattern, with art, religion, economy, politics, law, manners, styles of
thought etc. fitted to each other. This organic integrity of a whole civilization is
not static however, it evolves according to certain rather firm rules. True, Vico
seems to have had some difficulties with the insertion of sacred or Biblical
history in his general historical scheme of things, the kind of difficulties that
had not bothered the precedent major Catholic philosophers of history from St
Augustine to Bossuet. Nevertheless, two things have to be taken in consideration. The first is that throughout the Nuova Scienza Vico speaks consistently
about the role of Divine Providence in human affairs large and small. The second is that in separate works, Vico does offer some tentative structurings of
Hebrew/Scriptural history, even though these are not altogether parallel or analogous with those of pagan/secular courses of history.
In any case, Vico provided the earliest and clearest source for a mode of
reading history that was to be followed thereafter widely by very different
kinds of historians, and from different angles: Hamann and Herder first, Hegel,
Marx, Taine, Spengler, Toynbee, Lotman and many others thereafter. In fact
recent commentators, such as Giuseppe Mazzotta, or Mark Lilla regard Vico as
an important turning point, either toward a renewed and spiritual humanism (as
the first did), or as the fountainhead of reactionary conservatism as the other
one argued. These and other arguments (from the secularist reading of Benedetto Croce to the Catholic ones) are based on four points.

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Leibniz, Vico and Alternative Modernities

163

The first has just been pointed out, it has to do with the organic integration
of human activities and domains into an intelligible structure at every point in
time. The second is that, according to Vico, the truly central element of any
separate culture is the altar seen both literally and physically, but, of course,
also in the more general and allegorical sense as the religious conception guiding the respective society. The third is what we would call nowadays multiculturalism, i. e. the recognition of a plurality of societies, geographically, linguistically, ethnically, and so forth. The fourth, but by no means the last, is the
similarity of the evolutionary stages in each of these different cultures. If we
look at these societies statically, they differ clearly from one another, if we
look at their dynamics they are strikingly similar, not to say identical. Each of
them undergoes basically three stages. The first is a bestial age, with patriarchal families, social order and discipline achieved by the fear of the gods, a
theologically grown religion just beginning. The next is an age of heroes, of
oligarchies and aristocracies, class alliances of the strong against the weak or
poor, cruel laws, ferocious ideals. The last and final stage is one of men with
increasingly equal rights, equitable laws, democratic republics and constitutional monarchies (Vico's favorite solution); this however leads in turn, Vico
recognizes, to an enfeeblement of traditional ties, the corruption of customs,
dissolution, a kind of return to barbarity. Thus the beginning of a new cycle
becomes necessary. The best model is provided by Classical Antiquity. The
most important point that we have to pick up here is the following: Vico is a
firm anti-Utopian, he does not idolize any of these stages, he depicts as objectively as possible the foibles and drawbacks of each of these ages, along with
its glories and achievements. It is also true that one of Vico's theories that
proved more interesting than others was his vision of the theopoetic origins
of human civilization. Human beings are thus those living creatures that are
capable and desirous to practice self-poeticization. Both the centrality of the
poetic in human life and its close ties with Divine are thus energetically asserted.
V.
What can we learn from an examination of the ideas of Vico, Leibniz, and
some other contemporaries of theirs? To answer this question we have to look
back to what we were saying at the beginning about the range of possible attitudes in the face of the globalist modernization project: from total rejection to
enthusiastic and indiscriminate approval. First in the 18th century and thereafter
with increasing haste and emphasis, the project deviated in the direction of a
secularist and materialist interpretation, which large numbers of people regard
now as unilateral, reductionist, and even counter-productive in the long run.
The variants proposed by Voltaire, Rousseau, Diderot particularly led to the

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rejection of large portions of the past. A feeling of lack of continuity, specifically a marginalization, even a persecution of religion, at bottom a belittling of
any and all spiritual and ideal factors in human existence ensued. Western civilization often became and was rightly regarded as a wounded and incomplete
civilization. There is no doubt in my mind that, in following the views of thinkers like Vico, Leibniz, Pascal, and others, different as they may be from each
other, solutions could be put on the table that would lead to world-images and
society-images that would be much more rounded, integral and comprehensive.
The all-too-brief presentations above indicate, I hope, how things could and
quite likely still can be different. They offer choices for a middling road of
moderate accomodation that ought to be taken much more seriously than they
were taken until now, choices that are situated in fact at the very roots and
origins of the Enlightenment, before it chose the path of the unilateral and the
radical.
VI.
The legitimate question arises whether such philosophical frameworks can
lead to any practical results, whether they can be implemented at all. I believe
that although they were not often tried out thoroughly, and over longer periods
of time, they deserve credit and they offer hope. Nevertheless, there are some
facts that deserve attention. Thus, very recently, a lead editorial in the thoughtful, even though wide-circulation weekly The Economist (June 7, 2004) provided a retrospect on the American President Ronald Reagan under the very
telling title: The first Post-Enlightenment President. I wrote myself not long
ago an examination on the early years of the presidency of George W. Bush in
terms of a parallel with the emergence and high-profile functioning of Christian-Democrat parties throughout much of Western Europe.3 One key point
made in that essay was the statement that so far the best and largest sample for
the functioning of a Christian-Democrat polity, one that should approximate
the course corrections provided by an alternative philosophy of development is
the period of the 1950s in Western Europe, under the sign of Burkean statesmen
like Konrad Adenauer, Alcide de Gasperi, Robert Schuman, and Charles de
Gaulle. Some of the key features of political orientation in this relatively short
period were enumerated in that essay. They include the emphatic affirmation of
personal and individual dignity, the attempt at the most comprehensive application of the principle of subsidiarity possible, and, above all, the recognition that
human beings, no less than politics and commonwealths are imperfect in their
essence. How these, and perhaps other principles were implemented may have
3 Compassionate Conservatism and Christian Democracy, Intercollegiate Review 38,
1/2002, pp. 4451.

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Leibniz, Vico and Alternative Modernities

165

differed probably from case to case. Nevertheless, respect for human life, rejection of centralization and of state interference in the conduct of the smaller
affairs of groups and/or persons, support for the family, for religion, for culture,
broadly liberal economics combined with social safety nets, encouragement of
intermediary structures including middle and small enterprises, subsidiarity in
political governance, were some of the constantly repeated themes of these policies. They contrasted with the undisciplined application of tolerance, or with
the preferential option for transgression of left-oriented globalizing systems, let
alone their stimulation of dependency upon a centralized state that acts as the
replacement for both family and religion. Such experiments, short and ephemeral as they have been so far, nevertheless tend to prove that we can make a
case for the credible possibility of alternatives to an all-encompassing and indiscriminate type of modernization, of the kind that prevails at present in most
of the world.
VII.
These alternatives, strongly colored as they are by the Baroque philosophers,
and functioning inside their intellectual horizons, have another unintended advantage. They tend to sketch out a reasonable and moderate answer to the
much-vexed issue of the opposition between the national and local and the universal and global. Indeed, any doctrine based on the principle of subsidiarity
has to offer adequate space for both poles of the social construction. Any sociohistorical option that recognizes individual dignity and imperfection, that recognizes culture, religion, and family as indispensable elements of human wellbeing, will be to some extent national, and to some extent universal. Such a
structure will be conducted inevitably along paths traced by Aristotle and Montesquieu. The desirable value of tolerance will be seen with equal inevitability
as a double-edged object: kindly, fair, and law-abiding admission of variety and
of multiple groups and conducts has to be reciprocated by the respectful recognition of majorities with their traditions and preferences by these very same
minorities.
It is worth citing here some of the most qualified thinkers in the field of
Christianity and politics, namely Oliver O'Donovan writing in tandem with
Joan Lockwood O'Donovan. What they present in their most recent book4 is
the following. It is quite true from a Christian point of view to understand the
Old Testament as based on the local/national, while the New Testament is directed more toward the universal/global. However, if one does not want to fall
into the trap of basic heretic structures such as the Manichean one and related
4 Bonds of Imperfection. Christian Politics, Past and Present. Grand Rapids, MI:
Eerdmans, 2004; particularly pp. 225245 and 276320.

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others, one has to admit the powerful connection between the Old Testament
and the New Testament. Therefore an effort to understand the continuity between the two intellectual horizons ought to be made. Thinkers such as Simone
Weil or Hannah Arendt are adduced by the authors toward a justification of a
patriotism of compassion, a recuperation of a sense of place, of a justifiable
vision of Heimat, of local adhesions and roots. National structures do not
have to be exclusively secular or racial, they can be also theological, in which
case they often prove to be the source of disciplines conducive to peace and
order.
Obviously in all these matters (specifically local vs. global, a complex kind
of tolerance, personal dignity, subsidiarity, economic and sociocultural policies
and so forth) there is much room for calm, thoughtful debate, for the details of
application and practice, for differences of emphasis. This is after all, the very
substance of politics, or, even more seriously, what human interaction is all
about and has always been about. I am convinced in all these matters the help
provided by a renewed and earnest examination of the historical origins of the
Enlightenment project can do much to reintroduce us to beneficial correctives
of the current state of affairs in the world.

VIII.
In summary, I believe we can say the following. The sociohistorical movement of the last two or three hundred years was probably inevitable and deeply
enscribed or wired into the very logic of the human race. It was also in many
respects highly beneficial to the great majority of people. However, like everything else in our sublunary and imperfect world, it has to be adjusted and reformed if we are to maintain hope and progress. There exists presently an extremely powerful (and all too often utopian) momentum toward continuing
without change and in ever more relentless ways the directions and the accelerations of the current societies. This is not healthy and desirable. However, an
attempt to negate and to undo 300 years of history (and to ignore all that preceded it) would be futile, malefic, most likely pointless or counter-productive.
The main problem that we can distinguish and to which most other problems
can be brought back is that on a world-wide scale there is a lack of balance
between the material evolution of mankind and its ideal and spiritual evolution.
It is in this area that our efforts ought to be concentrated: in re-establishing a
certain normality of balance and proportion. Such concentrated efforts ought to
be not negative, but affirmative and proactive. Such efforts ought to indicate
not a withdrawal from the world and a kind of isolation, but rather a vigorous
engagement with the world and with its disrepairs. They ought to seek goals

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Leibniz, Vico and Alternative Modernities

167

that are both valuable and attainable. Thus a renewal of the philosophical horizons and of the modes of judging the world become more urgent.
The project of modernizing globalization outlined during the 18th century and
implemented in the 19th and 20th centuries remains basically a sound one. What
seems highly necessary is to round it off, to complete it, to deepen it. To do so,
it is most necessary to go to the project's very origins, foundations, and roots
and to demonstrate patiently and reasonably where errors were made, where
certain things were left aside. The study of Leibniz, of Vico, of many of their
contemporaries becomes a very topical matter. Such a study can help us provide alternatives to the present orientation, and, far from clashing with it, helping it to actualize all its potentials in ways that have not been tried over the last
few centuries. This philosophical switch would enrich and deepen our ways of
thinking, it would help us satisfy obvious, but unarticulated needs and desires
of most human beings. It would mean another step in our approach to God,
another gesture of that final return that is, we hope, our ultimate fate.
Summary
The process of globalizing modernization dominant in the last three centuries had
as one main cause the philosophical switch initiated by Bacon, Hobbes and Descartes.
Responding to Cartesianism, a whole intellectual generation (characteristically represented by Leibniz and Vico) tried to accept it with qualifications and improvements.
They pursued a deeper, more rounded, and more inclusive Cartesianism by highlighting compatibilities and modes of coexistence with the traditions of Antiquity and
Medieval thinking. Likewise, we should seek primarily nowadays a return to these
early sources (political and intellectual) of the Enlightenment, rather oppose radically
its consequences. The Christian-Democrat movements of the 1950s could serve as a
model.

Zusammenfassung
Eine Hauptursache des Prozesses der weltweiten Modernisierung, wie sie in den
letzten drei Jahrhunderten erfolgte, ist die philosophische Wende, die von Bacon, Hobbes und Descartes eingeleitet wurde. Eine ganze Generation von Intellektuellen wie
sie von Leibniz und Vico reprsentiert wird war bemht, das kartesianische Denken
unter bestimmten Bedingungen und Verbesserungen zu bernehmen. Dabei versuchten
sie, dem Kartesianismus eine geschmeidigere Gestalt zu geben, indem sie die Kompatibilitt und Koexistenz mit den Traditionen der Antike und des Mittelalters betonten.
In hnlicher Weise sollten wir heute in erster Linie danach trachten, zu diesen frhen
Quellen der politischen und geistigen Aufklrung zurckzukehren, anstatt ihre Konsequenzen zu bekmpfen. Die christlich-demokratischen Bewegungen der 1950er Jahre
knnten als Modell dienen.

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Ist Kant fr oder gegen den Weltstaat?


Reflexionen zu seiner Schrift Zum ewigen Frieden
Von Karl-Heinz Nusser
Die Verehrung der Menschheit
ist abstoend
wie jeder Kult seiner selbst.
Nicols Gmes Dvila

Es ist eine wichtige Einsicht Kants, dass das Recht die Form des ueren
Handelns begrndet und nicht auf die Gesinnung geht. Zwar soll der Mensch
moralisch handeln, aber nicht alles, was Gegenstand der Moral ist, kann auch
Gegenstand des Rechts werden. Den Menschen, die in Notlagen sind, zu helfen,
ist eine moralische und keine rechtliche Pflicht.1 Whrend das Recht gegenber
der Moral sich durch sich selbst begrenzen kann und soll, wird es gegenber
der Geschichte von ueren Faktoren betroffen, die es zwar verhindern mchte,
aber oft nicht vermag. In seiner geschichtsphilosophischen Betrachtung stellt
Kant fest, dass der Mensch im gesellschaftlichen Verkehr von der Dynamik der
ungeselligen Geselligkeit getrieben werde: Zwar hat er eine Neigung, sich
zu vergesellschaften (. . .). Er hat aber auch einen groen Hang sich zu vereinzeln, weil er in sich zugleich die ungesellige Eigenschaft antrifft.2 Strkster
Ausdruck dieses gesellschaftlichen Mit- und Gegeneinanders sind die Konflikte
und Kriege der Staaten. Das Vlkerrecht vor Kant hatte kein generelles Verbot
von Kriegen aufgestellt. Kant mchte in der Schrift Zum ewigen Frieden den
Krieg als Mittel der Politik ein fr allemal eliminieren. Seine in diesem Beitrag
diskutierte Friedenstheorie ist zweifelsohne hchst aktuell, da der Weltfriede fr
alle Vlker auch gerade in unseren Tagen ein berragendes Ziel ist. Kants Friedenstheorie scheint jedoch in ihren Konsequenzen einen Weltstaat zu implizieren zumindest nach Meinung heutiger fderaler Weltstaatstheoretiker und
insofern ist sie auch kritisch unter die Lupe zu nehmen. Ich formuliere im Folgenden zwei Thesen zur Friedensschrift, eine zustimmende und eine kritischablehnende:
Wolfgang Kersting, Kant ber das Recht, Paderborn 2004.
Kant, Idee zu einer allgemeinen Geschichte in weltbrgerlicher Absicht, in: Kant
Werke hrsg. Weischedel Bd. 6, S. 37 f.
1
2

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1. Im Unterschied zur damaligen, von Hugo Grotius u. a. gelehrten Auffassung verbietet Kant den Angriffskrieg als Mittel der Politik und fordert fr die
zwischenstaatliche Ordnung ein Friedensbndnis zwischen selbststndig existierenden, aber sich zum Frieden verpflichtenden Staaten. Auch wenn die Vereinten Nationen von heute Machtstrukturen implizieren, die Kant als solche ausgespart hat, so kann seine Schrift doch als eine Art Programmschrift der UNO
angesehen werden.
2. Die zweite These hngt mit dem bei Kant vollzogenen bergang von der
politischen Moral zu einer moralischen Politik zusammen. Kant mchte damit
das Machiavellistische Scandalon der vollstndigen Trennung von Moral und
Politik beseitigen, aber er fllt mit seinem Vorschlag ins andere Extrem. Whrend auf einer ersten Ebene das Recht als innerstaatliches genuines und erzwingbares Recht begrndet wird, konstruiert Kant eine zweite Ebene, auf der
die Misshelligkeit zwischen der Moral und der Politik in Absicht auf den ewigen Frieden (Anhang zu den Definitivartikeln) angegangen und aufgehoben
wird. Diese Misshelligkeit wird beseitigt, indem die moralische Kraft des
Rechts in der gttlichen Vorsehung begrndet wird. Der Friede wird zum
Ewigen Frieden und zum hchsten rechtlich moralischen Gebot fr die internationale Ordnung der Staaten. Kant erhebt das anzustrebende Ziel des Friedens
in den Rang eines Gutes von ewiger und ununterbrochener Dauer. Dadurch entsteht das Missverstndnis, dass nicht die politische Vernunft den Frieden, sondern der Friede die politische Vernunft definiert. Der Friede wird zum Kriterium fr die politische Vernunft. Nicht mehr die kontingenten Handlungsbedingungen des endlichen Vernunftwesens Mensch sind der Ausgangspunkt fr das
politische Handeln des Menschen, sondern der von Gott gewollte und garantierte Ewige Friede.
Kants skularisierende Geschichtsphilosophie, dass die Natur selbst im
Spiele der menschlichen Freiheit zur Erreichung des vernnftigen Zwecks: der
Erreichung einer allgemeinen, das Recht verwaltenden brgerlichen Gesellschaft mitwirkt (. . .),3 wird jngst von Georg Kohler als zivilisatorische Evolutionstheorie verharmlost. Die aggressive menschliche Natur wird hier evolutionsgeschichtlich eingebunden in soziale Lernschritte. Der Ewige Frieden
verkrpert sich in der Natur der weltbrgerlichen Gesellschaft.4

3 Kant, Idee zu einer allgemeinen Geschichte in weltbrgerlicher Absicht (1784),


in: Weischedel, Kant, Ges. Werke, Ausgabe Weischedel Bd. VI, S. 49.
4 Georg Kohler, Kagan vs. Kant. Konturen der neuen Welt(Un)ordnung, in: G. Kohler, U. Marti (Hrsg.), Konturen der neuen Welt(Un)ordnung, Berlin 2003, S. 1161.

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Ist Kant fr oder gegen den Weltstaat?

171

Ich entwickle die vorstehenden Thesen in vier Schritten:


I. Die historischen Hintergrnde von Kants Schrift.
II. Der Ewige Frieden als Friedensbndnis zwischen den souvernen Staaten.
III. Politische Moral und christliche Gnade.
IV. Der Ewige Frieden als tre suprme von Kants Aufklrung.
I. Die historischen Hintergrnde von Kants Schrift
Zeitgleich mit dem Basler Frieden von 1795 und mit unausgesprochenem
hoffnungsvollem Bezug auf diesen verffentlichte Kant die philosophisch-politische Programmschrift Zum ewigen Frieden. Der 1795 abgeschlossene Frieden
zwischen Preuen und der jungen Republik Frankreich sollte ein Fundament fr
einen immer stehenden Friedensbau bilden mit der Republik Frankreich als
dem ersten Baustein und anderen Staaten, mglichst Republiken, die folgen
sollten. Was Kant im entfernten Knigsberg nicht wissen konnte, war, dass in
Paris lngst eine Direktorialregierung an der Macht war, mit Bonaparte Napoleon als dem starken Mann. Statt einer Friedensperiode folgten 20 Jahre Napoleonische Kriege und es folgte ein Jahrhundert, in dem die Strme des Nationalismus und Imperialismus ber Europa hinwegfegten. Die Karriere der Kantschen Friedensschrift beginnt mit dem Ende des 1. Weltkriegs, mit dem Jahre
1918, als der amerikanische Prsident Woodrow Wilson ein konkretes Programm zur Grndung eines Vlkerbundes vorlegte.5
Auch wenn Wilson nicht von Kants Entwurf inspiriert und der Vlkerbund
wenig erfolgreich war, so gebhrt Kant doch die Prioritt fr die Idee einer
friedlichen Gemeinschaft der Vlker. Nach dem Scheitern des Vlkerbunds
wird mit der Grndung der UNO im Jahre 1945 Kants Friedensschrift fr zahlreiche Theoretiker der internationalen Ordnung zur moralisch-rechtlichen Messlatte, mit der man die noch vorhandenen Mngel der UNO beheben will.
Der erste Themenkomplex gilt somit der Kantschen Begrndung des Friedensbundes und dessen impliziten Unterschieden zu dem politischen Zweckverband, den die Vereinten Nationen darstellen. Die zweite Perspektive richtet sich
auf die Friedensschrift als kosmopolitischer Entwurf.6 Seit dem 200-jhrigen
Jubilum der Friedensschrift im Jahre 1995 ist vor allem von deutschen KantInterpreten eine Ausweitung des Anspruchs des Kantschen Traktats vorgelegt
5 Wilson seinerseits beruft sich auf die Tradition der schottischen Aufklrung. Zu
den nheren Umstnden vgl. man Robert H. Ferrel, Woodrow Wilson & World War I
19171921; New York 1921; ferner Thomas J. Knock, Woodrow Wilson and the
Quest for a New World Order, Princeton 1992.
6 G. Unser, Die UNO, Mnchen 1992, S. 23.

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172

Karl-Heinz Nusser

worden. Dieser wird dann als kosmopolitische Programmschrift zu einem Weltstaat interpretiert, wobei der Versuch unternommen wird, Kants ausdrckliche
Ablehnung des Weltstaats als Inkonsequenz erscheinen zu lassen. Doch zunchst zum zweiten Themenkomplex, zur Frage der rechtlich-moralischen Notwendigkeit eines Friedensbundes zwischen Vlkern.
II. Der Ewige Frieden als Friedensbndnis
zwischen den souvernen Staaten
In der Schrift Zum Ewigen Frieden geht es zentral um dessen Herstellung
durch Wegrumung von Hindernissen, Schaffung von konstitutiven Bedingungen zu seiner Bildung und durch die Vergewisserung der Dauer des Ewigen
Friedens durch die Reflexion auf das Naturstreben und den identischen Zusammenhang von Politik und Moral.
Der Kern des Ewigen Friedens ist ein Friedensbndnis zwischen Staaten
mglichst Republiken , die den Frieden garantieren und die anderen Staaten
auffordern, dem Bndnis beizutreten. Daraus kann nach Kant nur ein Vlkerbund, aber kein Vlkerstaat resultieren. Die vielen Vlker wrden in einem
Staat ein Volk bilden mssen, was im Widerspruch zu dem verschieden kulturell geprgten Recht der Vlker steht. Kant hat auch aufgrund der vertragstheoretischen Ableitung einen staatstheoretischen Einwand gegen jeden Vlkerstaat. Das Individuum hat seinen Naturzustand verlassen und ist in einen gesetzlichen Zustand getreten, um einen hinreichenden Schutz durch eine
hinreichende Macht zu bekommen. Dieser Schutz stnde aber zur Disposition, wenn das eigene Volk zusammen mit anderen in einem einzigen Volk aufginge.
Kant steht innerhalb des Hobbes'schen rekonstruktiven Vertragsdenkens mit
dem im Naturzustand unbedingt geltenden Naturgesetz, dass die Individuen
bzw. die Staaten den Frieden suchen sollen, dass sie aber gleichermaen berechtigt sind, sich durch Rstung und Wehrbereitschaft zu verteidigen, wenn
der andere dies auch tut. Bei Hobbes heit es: Jedermann hat sich um den
Frieden zu bemhen, solange Hoffnung besteht. Kann er ihn nicht herstellen, so
darf er sich alle Hilfsmittel und Vorteile des Krieges verschaffen und sie bentzen. 7
Das im Sinne von Hobbes verstandene Naturgesetz verhindert nicht nur den
sicheren bergang in einen Vlkerstaat denn kein Volk darf dem anderen gegenber einen Vertrauensvorschuss leisten, es verunmglicht auch den von Kant
propagierten Frieden; denn fr ein Friedensbndnis gilt gleichermaen und realistischerweise die Mglichkeit des Rckfalls, eben weil dieses kein Gewaltmo7

Hobbes, Leviathan, hrsg. I. Fetscher, Frankfurt 1984, S. 99 f.

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Ist Kant fr oder gegen den Weltstaat?

173

nopol einschliet. Die Einzelstaaten bleiben die Trger und Garanten des Friedensbndnisses. Im Unterschied zur UNO bleibt jedoch die Organisation der
Macht bei Kant vllig offen. Die von Kant suggerierte Annahme, dass alle
Staaten in gleichem Umfang an der Organisation des Bndnisses beteiligt sind,
ist indes unrealistisch. Kant geht beim Friedensbndnis vom Recht aus. Ebenso
wie bei Hobbes muss auch bei Kant das Recht der Selbsterhaltung dienen. Aber
mit einem solchen, sich auf die Macht sttzenden Recht ist kein Ewiges Friedensbndnis zu schaffen, solange sich die Garantiemchte des Bndnisses
gleichberechtigt gegenber stehen und keiner die anderen schlechthin berragt.
Es entsteht kein Gewaltmonopol, dem sich alle Staaten unterstellen. Um diesem
misslichen Zustand zu entrinnen, wechselt Kant in den Bereich der reinen Moral ber, die er jedoch im Gegensatz zur Kritik der praktischen Vernunft im
Sinne einer immanenten Fortschrittsgeschichte versteht. Die Moral und nicht
das Recht muss nun die immerwhrende Einhaltung des Friedensbndnisses begrnden. Kant fordert in der Friedensschrift: dass doch die Vernunft, vom
Throne der hchsten moralisch gesetzgebenden Gewalt herab, den Krieg als
Rechtsgang schlechterdings verdammt, den Friedenszustand dagegen zur unmittelbaren Pflicht macht. Die praktische Vernunft soll den Krieg verurteilen und
im Menschen verborgene moralische Krfte wecken: diese Huldigung, die jeder Staat dem Rechtsbegriffe (. . .) leistet, beweist doch, dass eine noch grere,
ob zwar zur Zeit schlummernde moralische Anlage im Menschen anzutreffen
sei, ber das bse Prinzip in ihm (. . .) doch einmal Meister zu werden.8 Ganz
generell nimmt Kant ein Naturstreben zur Verwirklichung des Rechts an. Er
erklrt: Die Natur will unwiderstehlich, dass das Recht zuletzt die Oberhand
behalte. 9 Sttzende Argumente dafr sind die Vereinigung der Vlker durch
den Handelsgeist, das Gelingen der Franzsischen Revolution mit der Entstehung des republikanischen Frankreich, das, weil es eine Republik ist, den ersten Friedensbaustein zum Friedensgebude des Ewigen Friedens liefern soll.
III. Politische Moral und christliche Gnade
Da zwischen den Staaten kein Gewaltmonopol besteht, kann sich Kant nicht
auf den Zwangscharakter des Rechts berufen, um den ewigen Frieden zwischen
den Staaten herzustellen. brig bleibt nur die Moral. Mit der Moral hat es jedoch die Bewandtnis, dass die Menschen ihr nicht immer folgen und hinter den
von ihr vorgegebenen Zielen zurckbleiben. Kants Lsung dieses Dilemmas besteht in einer empirischen Umdeutung des christlichen Geheimnisses der gttlichen Gnade, die dem Menschen beim Handeln hilft. Das moralische Handeln
soll sich von dem das Gute wollenden gttlichen Willen getragen wissen. Eine
8
9

Kant, Zum ewigen Frieden, Ausgabe Weischedel Bd. IV, S. 210.


Kant, ebenda, S. 225.

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Karl-Heinz Nusser

neue Basis bietet eine ins Skulare transformierte theologische Geschichtsphilosophie, die die Entwicklung der menschlichen Gattung im Sinne eines bestndigen Fortschritts zum Guten hin interpretiert. In der Schrift, die drei Jahre spter
nach der Schrift Zum ewigen Frieden erscheint, Der Streit der Fakultten,
wird die gegenber frher vernderte Geschichtsphilosophie, die der Schrift
Zum ewigen Frieden bereits zugrunde liegt, entwickelt. In der Lehre der
christlichen Offenbarung ist die Gnade dasjenige freie Geschenk Gottes, das
vom Glubigen erkannt werden kann und das die Natur vollendet. Die theologischen Tugenden Glaube, Liebe und Hoffnung ermglichen dem Glubigen eine
Erwartung des Reiches Gottes, das vllig verschieden vom irdischen Verlauf der
Welt ist. Augustinus hat von der Civitas Dei gesprochen und deren Zustand von
dem vom Bsen durchdrungenen Zustand der Civitas Terrena unterschieden.10
Kant stellt im Abschnitt Der Streit der philosophischen und der theologischen Fakultt fest: Das Tun des Menschen muss als aus dem Menschen eigenen Gebrauch seiner moralischen Krfte entspringend, und nicht als Wirkung
vom Einfluss einer ueren hheren wirkenden Ursache, in Ansehung deren der
Mensch sich leidend verhielte, vorgestellt werden. Das Naturstreben nach
Glckseligkeit und die Gnade als die in uns liegende unbegreifliche moralische Anlage drften nicht voneinander unterschieden werden. Das Naturstreben enthlt schon von sich aus die Gnade. Bei Kant heit es: Wird aber unter
Natur (in praktischer Bedeutung) das Vermgen, aus eigenen Krften berhaupt
gewisse Zwecke auszurichten, verstanden, so ist Gnade nichts anderes als Natur
des Menschen, sofern er durch sein eigenes inneres oder bersinnliches Prinzip
(die Vorstellung seiner Pflicht) zu Handlungen bestimmt wird, welches, weil wir
uns es erklren wollen, gleichwohl aber weiter keinen Grund davon wissen, von
uns als von der Gottheit in uns gewirkter Antrieb zum Guten, dazu wir die Anlage in uns nicht selbst gegrndet haben, mithin als Gnade vorgestellt wird.11
Mit der These vom sinnlich erkennbaren Wirken der Gnade verlsst Kant die
Grundlagen der Kritik der praktischen Vernunft, nach der die Hervorbringung
der Glckseligkeit durch die Tugendgesinnung nicht in einem empirisch-kausalen, sondern nur in einem geistig-moralischen Sinn verstanden werden darf.
Das hchste Gut, das der Mensch in moralisch-praktischer Absicht erstreben
kann, wird in der Kritik der praktischen Vernunft in den Ideen Gott, Freiheit
und Unsterblichkeit postuliert.12 Seit der Schrift Zum ewigen Frieden wird
der metaphysische und theologische Begriff des hchsten Guts politisiert. In
der Schrift Zum ewigen Frieden spricht Kant bereits vom Staatsbrger einer
bersinnlichen Welt: Die Gltigkeit dieser angeborenen, zur Menschheit notwendig gehrenden und unveruerlichen Rechte (= rechtliche Freiheit und
10
11
12

Augustinus, De Civitate Dei.


Kant, Der Streit der Fakultten, Bd. VI, S. 308 f.
Kant, Kritik der praktischen Vernunft, 2. Buch, 2. Hauptstck.

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Ist Kant fr oder gegen den Weltstaat?

175

Gleichheit K.-H. N.) wird durch das Prinzip der rechtlichen Verhltnisse des
Menschen selbst zu hheren Wesen (wenn er sich solche denkt) besttigt und
erhoben, indem er sich nach eben denselben Grundstzen auch als Staatsbrger
einer bersinnlichen Welt vorstellt. 13 Die Voraussetzungen fr die Politisierung
des metaphysischen Ideals des hchsten Gutes werden im Streit der Fakultten sichtbar. Wir haben bereits Kants These kennen gelernt, dass im Menschen
eine Wirkkraft zum Guten liegt, die von der natrlichen Kontingenz, unter der
das Handeln steht, verschieden ist, weil sie durch die gttliche Gnade gewirkt
ist. Mit dieser Annahme hebt Kant das unvollkommene Vernunftwesen Mensch,
dessen Verwirklichung von Rechtsideen immer unter kontingenten Bedingungen
steht, auf eine rein spirituelle Ebene. Der ewige Friede ist mglich, weil Gott
ihn durch die Gnade ermglicht. Im Streit der Fakultten wird die entsprechende geschichtliche Dynamik ausfhrlich begrndet. Im Abschnitt von einer
Begebenheit unserer Zeit, welche diese moralische Tendenz des Menschengeschlechts beweiset, erklrt Kant, dass die Begeisterung fr die Franzsische
Revolution in den Gemtern aller Zuschauer (die nicht selbst in diesem Spiele
mit verwickelt sind) eine Teilnehmung dem Wunsche nach, die nahe an Enthusiasmus grenzt, und deren uerung selbst mit der Gefahr verbunden war, die
also keine andere, als eine moralische Anlage im Menschengeschlecht zur Ursache haben kann.14 Mit der Erreichung der republikanischen Staatsform die
der modernen reprsentativen Demokratie durchaus hnlich ist meint Kant
das von da an nicht mehr gnzlich rckgngig werdende Fortschreiten desselben zum Besseren, auch ohne Sehergeist, vorhersagen zu knnen. Damit sei,
so Kant, eine Anlage und ein Vermgen in der menschlichen Natur zum Besseren aufgedeckt, dergleichen kein Politiker aus dem bisherigen Lauf der Dinge
herausgeklgelt htte.15 Der Fortschritt zum Besseren wird immer zahlreichere
gute Taten der Menschen hervorbringen. Allmhlich wird die Gewaltttigkeit von Seiten der Mchtigen weniger, der Folgsamkeit in Ansehung der Gesetze mehr werden und der moralische Fortschritt wird sich schlielich auch
auf das Verhltnis der Vlker zueinander erstrecken. Bei Kant heit es: Es
wird etwas mehr Wohlttigkeit, weniger Zank in Prozessen, mehr Zuverlssigkeit im Worthalten usw., teils aus Ehrliebe, teils aus wohlverstandenem eigenem Vorteil im gemeinen Wesen entspringen, und sich endlich dies auch auf
die Vlker im ueren Verhltnis gegeneinander bis zur weltbrgerlichen Gesellschaft erstrecken. 16 Man muss diese spten Ausfhrungen Kants mit seinen
uerungen innerhalb der Schrift Die Religion innerhalb der Grenzen der bloen Vernunft von 1793 zusammen sehen, um zu erkennen, wie sehr Kant auf

13
14
15
16

Kant,
Kant,
Kant,
Kant,

Zum ewigen Frieden VI, S. 204 Anm.


Der Streit der Fakultten Bd. VI, S. 358.
Der Streit der Fakultten Bd. VI, S. 361.
Der Streit der Fakultten Bd. VI, S. 365.

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176

Karl-Heinz Nusser

den Flgeln der Utopie entschwebt. In der Religionsschrift hatte Kant noch vom
natrlichen Hang zum Bsen gesprochen.17
Betrachtet man im Abstand von 200 Jahren Kants Friedensschrift, so sind
alle angegebenen Fundamente zum Gebude des Ewigen Friedens brchig.
Nicht nur, dass die Geschichte ber das 19. und das 20. Jahrhundert eine Folge
von sich bestndig steigernden Kriegen gebracht hat auch leisten die republikanische Staatsform, der Handelsgeist und die Publizitt nicht das, was Kant
von diesen drei Faktoren erwartet hat.18 Im brigen ist die Publizitt ohne
Rcksicht auf die Interessen des Marktes und des Geldes nicht zu bekommen.
Kants kosmologische Fortschrittsgeschichte mit der Annahme der selbstzerstrerischen Kraft des Bsen und dem sich ausbreitenden moralischen Prinzip des
Guten beruht auf einer unberechtigten Profanierung christlicher Glaubensgeheimnisse. Unser praktisches Interesse, das Gute zu tun und gute Politik zu
machen, muss immer davon ausgehen, dass dies unter kontingenten und endlichen Bedingungen geschieht. Kants aufklrerische Transformation christlicher
Geheimnisse hebt die Lehre von Augustinus auf und scheitert daran.
Augustinus unterscheidet zwischen dem irdischen und dem himmlischen
Staat. Der irdische Staat lebt nicht aus dem Glauben und strebt nach irdischem
Frieden. Der Gottesstaat dagegen wird mit dem mystischen Namen des himmlischen Jerusalem belegt, er bedeutet Friedensschau. Augustinus spricht jedoch lieber vom ewigen Leben als vom ewigen Frieden. Bei ihm heit es
in De Civitate Dei: Doch da man von Frieden hufig auch im Bereich des vergnglichen Daseins spricht, wo es doch kein ewiges Leben gibt, wollen wir das
Endziel dieses Staates, in dem er sein hchstes Gut erblickt, lieber das ewige
Leben als Frieden nennen.19 Der himmlische Staat ist zwar nach Augustinus
whrend seiner Erdenpilgerschaft am irdischen Frieden interessiert, sichert
und befrdert in allen Angelegenheiten, die die sterbliche Natur des Menschen
betreffen die menschliche Willensbereinstimmung, aber der himmlische
Friede, die eintrchtigste Gemeinschaft des Gottesgenusses und des wechselseitigen Genusses in Gott ist allein in Wahrheit Friede.20 Augustinus erkennt
die Bedeutung des irdischen Friedens fr den Gottesstaat an, aber er spricht
dem irdischen Frieden keine ewige Dauer zu; denn diese kommt nur der beseligenden Gottesschau zu.

Kant, Die Religion innerhalb der Grenzen der bloen Vernunft Bd. IV, S. 676.
Metaphysik der Sitten, Rechtslehre 54, S. 467.
19 Augustinus, De Civitate Dei, deutsche bersetzung von Wilhelm Thimme, Mnchen 1978, XIX, S. 546.
20 Augustinus, De Civ. Dei XIX, S. 562.
17
18

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Ist Kant fr oder gegen den Weltstaat?

177

IV. Der Ewige Frieden


als tre suprme von Kants Aufklrung
Moderne Kant-Interpreten, die die profanierende geschichtsphilosophische
Transformation des Gottespostulats bei Kant durchschauen, aber sich nicht zu
deren Kritik bereit finden, mssen konsequenterweise die bei Kant durch Gott
garantierte moralische Fortschrittsgeschichte durch den Weltstaat als dem skularen hchsten Gut ersetzen. Nicht Gott garantiert dann den Frieden, sondern
das Gewaltmonopol des Weltstaates. Dieses hchste politische Gut, das nach
Meinung politischer Realisten, wenn es denn dieses gbe, mit einer Weltdiktatur
identisch wre, wird in den Theorien der Weltstaatspolitiker mit allen Vorzgen
der Demokratie, so z. B. Gewaltenteilung, Fderalitt und Anerkennung der
Kulturen ausgestattet.21
Jeder, der nur ein wenig die politischen Ereignisse seit Ende des 2. Weltkriegs beobachtet hat, wei, was ein amerikanisches oder russisches oder chinesisches weltstaatliches Gewaltmonopol fr die Vielfalt der Kulturen bedeuten
wrde: es htte deren Aufhebung bzw. Homogenisierung im Namen von Moral
und Freiheit zur Folge. Andere Theoretiker, die wohlweislich auf einen Weltstaat verzichten, sprechen von einer demokratischen Legitimation des Vlkerrechts. Aus der Perspektive islamischer Staaten oder Chinas erscheinen solche
Zielsetzungen als unverhllter westlicher Imperialismus.
Kant hat mit der Forderung nach einem Friedensbndnis einen realistischen
Kern einer Friedenstheorie entwickelt, deren wesentliche Elemente auch von
der UNO verfolgt werden. Zu ergnzen ist dabei aber das Recht durch das
Machtprinzip; denn die Friedenssicherung ohne Macht scheitert auch in Zeiten
eines funktionierenden Sicherheitsrates der UNO. Durch die postulierte Ewigkeit der Friedensordnung hat Kant den Bereich kontraktualistisch-einlsbarer
Rechtstheorie verlassen, um in eine geschichts-philosophisch transformierte Moral berzuwechseln. Da diese nicht einlsbar ist, wird von neueren Kant-Interpreten im Widerspruch zu den tatschlichen Behauptungen Kants ein Weltstaat gefordert. Der Widerspruch, in den sich Kant in der Schrift Zum ewigen
Frieden verstrickt, ist aufgrund der historischen Bedeutung, die die Schrift inzwischen bekommen hat, von groer Tragweite. Auf dem Hintergrund seines
aufgeklrten Systems der Vernunft wird die Friedensschrift mit der Forderung
nach einem ewigen Frieden zur nicht auflsbaren Antinomie. Ferner gert
21 Vgl. dazu Otfried Hffe, Demokratie im Zeitalter der Demokratisierung, Mnchen 1999, ferner, Vlkerbund oder Weltrepublik, in: I. Kant, Zum ewigen Frieden,
Berlin 1995, ebenso in: O. Hffe, Knigliche Vlker, Frankfurt 2001. Der Widerspruch bei Kant wird bemerkt und nicht in einer Weltstaatskonstruktion gelst von J.
Nida-Rmelin, Ewiger Friede zwischen Moralismus und Hobbesianismus, in: Merkel
Reinhard/Wittmann Roland (Hrsg.), Zum ewigen Frieden, Frankfurt 1996, S. 239
255.

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178

Karl-Heinz Nusser

Kant mit der Sptform seiner Geschichtsphilosophie aber in eine Antinomie solcher Art, wie wir sie auch von Marx' Revolutionstheorie her kennen:
(1) Das Recht soll als freie Selbstgesetzgebung des Menschen gedacht werden.
Im Gegensatz dazu aber gilt,
(2) dass das Recht das Ergebnis einer planvoll verfahrenden Natur ist, die die
Menschen auch bei vorhandener Willensschwche zum Friedensschluss
miteinander ntigt.
Kants Theorie des Ewigen Friedens stellt den Anspruch, ausdrcklich und
im vollen Sinne Realisierung von Vernunft zu sein. Dabei kann sie doch nur als
Modell eines politischen Gebildes gemeint sein, das durch die Mehrheitsentscheidung von Staaten zustande kommt.22 Kants Friedensmodell ist in der Autonomie der praktischen Vernunft verwurzelt. In der freien Selbstgesetzgebung der
praktischen Vernunft, die in den Ewigen Frieden als einer endgltigen und
unabnderlichen Ordnung mndet, wird die Aufklrung des von der Franzsischen Revolution begeisterten Kant zu einem fundamentalistischen Ziel des
Handelns und Denkens. Der Ewige Frieden ist so ein entfernter Nachklang
des tre suprme der Vernunft der Jakobiner. Dieses tre suprme wird nicht
verehrt, ihm muss vielmehr gehorcht werden: es fordert den Ewigen Frieden
unter allen Bedingungen.
Ein endliches und damit vernderliches Gut, wie den Frieden, zu einem ber
der Zeit stehenden und damit unvernderlichen Gut zu erheben, fhrt mit zwingender Notwendigkeit zu unauflsbaren Widersprchen, zu Antinomien. Worin
bestehen diese?
Ist es die Antinomie der Ineffektivitt, sodass die Theorie dasjenige zur Folge
hat, was sie vermeiden mchte? Dies wrde bedeuten, dass die Garantiemchte
eines ewigen Friedens auch zur Verhinderung eines Krieges einen Krieg beginnen mssten, nmlich dann, wenn sich ein Land anschickte, seine Nachbarn
anzugreifen. Oder der spezielle Fall einer definitiven Kriegsverhinderung: Dass
Kants Theorie des ewigen Friedens auf eine Variante der Theorie des letzten
Gefechts hinausliefe, nach der ein letztes Gefecht gefhrt werden msste, um
alle Gefechte ein fr allemal zu beenden?
Kant hat diese drohenden Konsequenzen seiner Theorie bemerkt, zumindest
hat er diese nicht gewollt. Wenn man mit Kant die absolute Geltung des Rechts
annimmt, so hat dies nicht zur Folge, dass das Recht auch im vorliegenden
konkreten Fall wirklich erkannt wird. Diesem Mangel, der dem Menschen als
endlichem Wesen anhaftet, kann nicht damit abgeholfen werden, dass wie
Kant annimmt die im Glauben zu erhoffende gttliche Gnade die Mngel der
menschlichen Natur ausgleicht, sodass infolgedessen in jedem einzelnen Fall
ein Friedensbndnis den Ewigen Frieden wahren kann und die Unrechtmig22

Kant, Metaphysik der Sitten, Rechtslehre, S. 479.

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Ist Kant fr oder gegen den Weltstaat?

179

keit jedes Krieges erkennt. Das Handeln der gttlichen Liebe ist aus der bloen
Vernunft heraus nicht zu erkennen und nicht in eine Rechtsordnung umsetzbar.
Die von Kant geforderte strenge Vereinbarkeit von Politik und Moral fhrt in
letzter Konsequenz zum Weltstaat. Dabei wird die Aprioritt der Menschenrechte universell, aber nur als Idee, gedacht. Die reinen Ideen der Menschenrechte und des Friedens sind jedoch als solche nicht realisierbar und aus ihnen
folgt nicht, dass die Umsetzung eines universellen Weltrechts mit einem entsprechenden einzigen Weltgewaltmonopol stringenter und irrtumsfreier als in
einem Friedensbndnis verliefe. Ebenso wenig folgt die Realitt eines evolutionren Prozesses, der aufgrund zunehmender gesellschaftlicher und konomischer Vernetzung zu einer neuen Rechtsqualitt, der des Weltbrgerrechts bzw.
des Weltstaats fhren msste.
Die strenge Vereinbarkeit von Politik und Moral, wie Kant sie fordert, htte
zur Folge, dass in jedem Einzelfall immer zweifelsfrei erkennbar wre, welcher
Staat unmoralisch und welcher moralisch handelte. Die Macht eines Weltstaats
msste einen Krieg eines Staates sofort durch Krieg verhindern. Kant hat das
im Vergleich zum Friedensbndnis grere bel der Rechtsdurchsetzung durch
einen Weltstaat, das aus seiner These der Einheit von Politik und Moral folgt,
gesehen und den Weltstaat als Despotie abgelehnt. In diesem nchternen Urteil
Kants liegt die Einsicht in die Endlichkeit des Menschen, die es nicht erlaubt,
die Idee der Einheit von Politik und Moral im konkreten Fall vllig transparent
zu machen und als solche zu realisieren.
V. Abschlieende Bemerkungen
Die erste These der Friedensschrift von Kant bercksichtigt die Endlichkeit
und Kontingenz des Menschen: Das Verhltnis der Vlker zueinander soll
durch einen Friedensbund (foedus pacificum) gestaltet werden, der den Krieg
als Mittel der Politik ausschaltet. Mit diesem Vorschlag steht Kant in groer
Nhe zu den faktisch existierenden Vereinten Nationen, insofern diese als kollektives Sicherheitssystem aufgefasst werden. Der bergang dieses Friedensideals in einen Friedensvertrag . . . der alle Kriege auf immer zu endigen
suchte fhrt jedoch zu dem oben beschriebenen Widerspruch, den ich in der
zweiten These formuliere.
Meine zweite These lautet: Kants Schrift Zum Ewigen Frieden liegt ein
Widerspruch zugrunde. Auf der einen Seite wird die strenge Einheit von Politik
und Moral und deren rechtliche Realisierung behauptet, auf der anderen Seite
aber eingerumt, dass es die Endlichkeit verbietet, die strenge Verwirklichung
der Einheit von Politik und Moral, d.h. den Weltstaat zu fordern.
Die strenge Einheit von Politik und Moral wird durch die skularisiert verstandene gttliche Gnade mglich. Der in Gott vorhandene Friedenswille, der

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180

Karl-Heinz Nusser

die Fehlbarkeit des menschlichen Handelns nicht ausschliet, wird fr Kant zur
Quelle der menschlichen Friedensmoral und zum Garanten der Einhaltbarkeit
des Friedensvertrages, der alle Kriege auf immer endigt. In Ansehung des
Pflichtbegriffs vom Ewigen Frieden ist der Rekurs auf die den Weltlauf prdeterminierende Ursache Vorsehung wie es bei Kant heit praktisch geboten. Dem Ewigen Frieden, von Kant als Idee gedacht, kann jedoch nicht
derselbe Stellenwert zukommen wie den Ideen Gott, Freiheit und Unsterblichkeit der Kritik der praktischen Vernunft.
Kants fehlgeleiteter Enthusiasmus inspiriert in der Gegenwart hchst problematische Forderungen nach einem fderalen Weltstaat, nach einer demokratischen Legitimation des Vlkerrechts, Forderungen, die von vornherein nur
die Demokratie als Trger des Vlkerrechts zulassen oder ein supranationales
Verfassungsregime fordern. Kants politische Moral, die in eine moralische Politik bergeht, trgt aufgrund ihrer illegitimen theologischen Voraussetzungen
dazu bei, den Blick auf die Realitt zu verstellen. Lsst man Kants skularisierte Idee einer Weltrepublik beiseite, so mag ein Blick auf die historische
Realitt ernchternd wirken: Umfassende Ordnungen, wie z. B. die Weltreiche
Alexanders des Groen und der Rmer haben nur durch ihre berragende
Macht bestanden.

Zusammenfassung
Kants Schrift Zum ewigen Frieden enthlt zwei Thesen: Mit der ersten These fordert Kant einen rechtlich-moralischen Friedensbund zwischen den souvernen Staaten.
Hier hat er das groe Verdienst, als erster die Organisation der UNO gefordert zu
haben. Seine zweite These ist jedoch hchst problematisch. Da zwischen diesen Staaten kein Gewaltmonopol besteht, interpretiert Kant die Friedenspflicht als moralische
Aufgabe der Staaten, deren Befolgung und Einhaltung er durch die Annahme der gttlichen Gnade garantiert sieht. Moderne Weltstaatstheoretiker wollen mit ihrer Forderung nach einer Interpretation der Streitigkeiten durch ein Weltgewaltmonopol Kants
Forderung auf einen vermeintlich realistischen Kern reduzieren, in dem die gttliche
Garantie durch menschliches Tun ersetzt ist. In Wirklichkeit heben sie den endlichen
Charakter der menschlichen Vernunft auf, die allezeit unter kontingenten Bedingungen
handeln muss.

Summary
Kant's Opusculum On Perpetual Peace consists of two theses. In the first thesis
Kant demands a lawful and moral peace-keeping alliance between sovereign states.
Here Kant deserves the great honor of being the first to demand the formation of the
international peace-keeping body of the United Nations that would ensure perpetual
peace.

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Ist Kant fr oder gegen den Weltstaat?

181

His second thesis however, faces major problems. Since no exclusive control exists
between states to support this alliance, Kant considers the obligation to peace to be a
moral duty of the states, warranting its compliance and adherence by obtaining divine
grace.
However, contemporary world state theoreticians are demanding an interpretation
and resolution of possible conflicts through a world court or other authoritative central
authority that would result in reducing Kant's goals to more realistic expectations,
with human actions supplementing divine guarantee.
In reality this eliminates the ultimate character of human intelligence which always
deals with contingent conditions.

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III. Aktuelle Fragen zur Friedensethik

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Die kirchliche Friedenslehre vor neuen Problemen


Von Wolfgang Ockenfels
I. Wesen und Begriff des Friedens
Es gibt kaum ein Wort, das die tiefste menschliche Sehnsucht und Hoffnung
besser bezeichnete als das Wort Frieden. Es gilt als Inbegriff menschlichen
Glcks und gelungener Lebenserfllung, und zwar in individueller und gesellschaftlicher Dimension. Begrifflich ist der Friede allerdings schwer zu fassen.
Die Begriffsinhalte unterscheiden sich je nach politischem, ideologischem und
religisem Standort. Darum ist dieser Begriff oft der Manipulation und Demagogie ausgesetzt und lt sich sehr gut fr eine politische Propaganda verwenden, die zum Unfrieden fhrt und den Krieg legitimiert. Geschichtliche Beispiele dafr bieten im Europa des 20. Jahrhunderts vor allem die Ideologien des
deutschen Nationalsozialismus und des sowjetischen Kommunismus. Hier haben
totalitre und weltrevolutionre Systeme versucht, ihre eigenen Vorstellungen
einer angeblichen Friedensordnung anderen mit Gewalt aufzuzwingen.
Es scheinen sich die paradoxen Aussagen des hl. Augustinus zu besttigen,
wonach sich Staaten wie Ruberbanden auffhren, wie auch Ruberbanden sich
in Staaten verwandeln knnen, die Kriege um des Friedens willen fhren. Und
dies zuweilen sogar im Namen Gottes. Aber welche Friedenswerte stehen hier
auf dem Spiel, die es gewaltsam zu verteidigen und durchzusetzen gilt? Kann
der friedliche Zweck alle Mittel der Gewalt heiligen oder diskreditieren gerade diese Mittel das angestrebte Ziel?
Die Frage nach den inhaltlichen Werten des Friedens gewinnt nach dem Ende
des Kalten Krieges, vor allem nach 1989, besonders aber mit der Ausweitung
des islamistischen Terrors, also seit dem 11. September 2001, eine neue politische und religise Bedeutung. Die Antwort auf die Wertfrage des Friedens bestimmt gewi auch die Verfahrensweise der praktischen Friedenspolitik, wenngleich man heute eher den Eindruck gewinnen kann, als ob sich die gegenwrtige Friedensdiskussion hauptschlich auf formal-juristische, institutionelle,
polizeiliche und militrische Aspekte beschrnkte. berdies konzentriert sich
der Friedensdiskurs einseitig auf Fragen des konomischen Interesses und der
politischen Macht und klammert die inhaltlichen Wert-Bestimmungen weitgehend aus.

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186

Wolfgang Ockenfels

Das liegt wohl daran, da es einer pluralistischen Gesellschaft schwerfllt,


sich auf fundamentale Friedenswerte zu einigen oder zu besinnen. Besonders in
den postmodernen Gesellschaften Europas setzt man sich schnell dem Verdacht
des Fundamentalismus aus, wenn man inhaltliche Werte postuliert, die dem
Frieden vorauszusetzen sind. An diesem Werte-Defizit krankt die Friedensforschung, der es nicht gelingt, ihren Gegenstand, den Grundwert Frieden, inhaltlich eindeutig zu definieren. Darunter leidet vor allem das westliche Verteidigungskonzept. Denn wenn man nicht mehr darstellen kann, welchen Frieden
man eigentlich als verteidigungswert zu betrachten habe, gert die Verteidigungsbereitschaft in eine Krise. Blo materielle Werte unter Einsatz des Lebens
verteidigen zu sollen, reicht wohl nicht aus.
Von den christlichen Kirchen darf man hingegen erwarten, da sie grundstzlich und in Grundrissen zur Klrung und Abgrenzung von Friedenswerten beitragen knnen. Vor allem hat die katholische Kirche zur Friedensproblematik
des fteren Stellung genommen. Die Botschaft der Kirche war und ist eine Friedensbotschaft, weil das Reich Gottes, das sie verkndet, als ein Reich des Friedens vorgestellt wird. Nur lt sich ber diese Friedensherrschaft Gottes nicht
menschlich verfgen: Der endzeitliche ewige Frieden lt sich durch Politik
und konomie weder herstellen noch verhindern. Erst recht entzieht er sich
politisch-ideologischer Verwertung durch revolutionre Programme.
Versuche, diesen eschatologischen Vorbehalt zu negieren und das Reich
Gottes fr politisch oder konomisch machbar zu halten, hat es in der Geschichte immer wieder gegeben; sie haben nach Karl R. Popper stets die Hlle
hervorgebracht. Mit der christlichen Tradition unvereinbar ist auch ein konsequenter Pazifismus, der sich auf die Bergpredigt beruft, mit der aber wie Bismarck im Einklang mit der katholischen Tradition meinte keine Politik zu
machen ist.
Vom absoluten ewigen Frieden zu unterscheiden, aber doch nicht ganz zu
trennen, ist der Friede auf Erden. Wenn das Reich des Friedens als ein Reich
der Wahrheit und Gerechtigkeit, der Liebe und der Freiheit verheien ist, so
werden diese Verheiungen zwar erst in der ganz anderen neuen Welt erfllt.
Sie gelten aber, wie Johannes XXIII. in seiner Enzyklika Pacem in terris
(1963) hervorhebt, bereits hier und jetzt als ethische Ansprche fr die Friedenspraxis. Dabei ist vorausgesetzt, da der Mensch die reine Wahrheit, die
absolute Gerechtigkeit, die vollkommene Liebe und die totale Freiheit weder
erkennen noch realisieren kann. Aus dieser Einsicht in die Schwche der Menschennatur resultiert die Duldung pluraler Auffassungen ber die Friedensinhalte und das ernsthafte Ringen um die richtige Friedenspolitik.
Wie schwer ein friedliches Verhalten bereits im berschaubaren Bereich personaler Beziehungen ist, zeigt der Unfriede, in dem viele Menschen mit sich
selber, mit ihrer Familie und den Nachbarn leben. Die Unfhigkeit zum inter-

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Die kirchliche Friedenslehre vor neuen Problemen

187

personalen Frieden wirkt sich aus und setzt sich fort in den gesellschaftlichen
Bereichen von Politik und Wirtschaft, wo das Machtinteresse und das Gewinnstreben als strkste Handlungsmotive gelten. In den gegenwrtigen Friedensdiskussionen werden meist auch jene Gefahren verkannt, die dem innerstaatlichen
sozialen Frieden drohen, wenn etwa die Zahl der Arbeitslosen weiter ansteigt
und der Wohlfahrtsstaat keine soziale Sicherheit mehr garantieren kann. Wohin
sozialer Unfriede zu fhren vermag, hat in Deutschland das Jahr 1933 gezeigt:
nmlich zur Legitimationskrise der Demokratie, zur rassistischen Konstruktion
von Sndenbcken und zur Ableitung innerstaatlicher Aggressionen nach auen. Da innenpolitische Schwierigkeiten sich auenpolitisch entladen knnen,
lt sich anhand vieler Beispiele aus der Geschichte darlegen.
Dieser von Pacem in terris betonte innere Zusammenhang zwischen den
verschiedenen Friedensebenen, also dem personalen, sozialen und internationalen Frieden, wird auch in der gegenwrtigen Debatte viel zu wenig ins Auge
gefat. Die ffentliche Aufmerksamkeit konzentriert sich auf die internationale
Friedensebene im Verhltnis westlich orientierter Staaten zu jenen Staaten
und weltweit agierenden Gruppierungen aus der islamischen Welt, die zu gewaltsamen Ausgriffen und terroristischen Aktionen neigen. Diese neue Form
der Bedrohung hat in Deutschland bisher lediglich einige diplomatische, polizeiliche und auch militrische Aktivitten ausgelst, letztere besonders im Rahmen der Vereinten Nationen und in Form von Friedensmissionen.
Im Mittelpunkt einer christlich verstandenen Friedensmission htte freilich
zunchst die Erkenntnis und die Beseitigung der Ursachen von Terror und
Krieg zu stehen. Frieden ist ja mehr als das Fehlen von Krieg, Friedenspolitik
mehr als nur die Eindmmung von ungerechter, brutaler Gewalt durch Gegengewalt, wenngleich diese Form militrischer Verteidigung unter den Bedingungen der bellum iustum-Lehre auch christlich legitimiert erscheint. Augustinus
hatte freilich nicht nur einen negativen, sondern vor allem einen positiven Friedensbegriff im Sinn, als er den Frieden formal definierte als Ruhe (in) der
Ordnung. Diese Definition kann keineswegs mit der Ruhe und Ordnung eines
Polizeistaates oder mit einer Politik des law and order gleichgesetzt werden.
Ruhe ist keine Friedhofsruhe und Ordnung keine statische Zwangsordnung, die
den status quo konserviert.
Der Frieden ist vielmehr eine dynamische Ordnung, eine geordnete Entwicklung in Richtung auf mehr Wahrheit, Gerechtigkeit, Solidaritt und Freiheit.
Diese Prinzipien einer positiven Friedensordnung werden seit Pacem in terris
fast immer genannt, wenn sich die Kirche zu Fragen des Friedens uert. Paul
VI. sah im Frieden vor allem eine Frucht der Gerechtigkeit, und die gerechte
weltweite Entwicklung war fr ihn ein Synonym und ein Programm fr den
Frieden. Eine hnliche Sichtweise findet sich auch bei Johannes Paul II., der in
seiner Enzyklika Sollicitudo rei socialis (1987) das Prinzip der Solidaritt vor

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188

Wolfgang Ockenfels

allem hinsichtlich der internationalen Entwicklungszusammenarbeit akzentuiert,


die in der Zeit nach 1989, also im Zeitalter der Globalisierung, gewi einen
noch hheren Grad der Aktualitt erreicht hat.
II. Positive Friedenswerte und Dialog
In der Miachtung der genannten positiven Grundwerte liegt die eigentliche Ursache des Unfriedens. Terror und Krieg sind aus dieser Sicht nur die
Folgen und Symptome dieser Verkennung. Kriege, gewaltsame Revolutionen
und Terror stehen berdies im Gegensatz zu einer geordneten Entwicklung,
kommen also als Mittel zur Erreichung des positiven Friedens nicht in Betracht. Wenn es auch nicht leicht mglich ist, die genannten Grundwerte konkret zu definieren und zu entscheiden, welche politischen Manahmen den besagten Mastben entsprechen, so ist der allgemeinen Erfahrung doch zugnglich, welche Handlungen dem Frieden widersprechen.
Was die Wahrheit oder bescheidener: die Wahrhaftigkeit angeht, lt sich
feststellen, da durch wirklichkeitsverzerrende Ideologien, Tuschungen, gebrochene Vertrge und nicht eingehaltene Versprechungen der Friede gefhrdet
wird. Dem Frieden abtrglich ist auch die Hinterziehung der Gerechtigkeit,
wenn einem Volk grundlegende Rechte (wie etwa das Recht auf Selbsterhaltung
und Selbstbestimmung) vorenthalten werden. Als friedensgefhrdend erweist
sich immer der Mangel an Solidaritt, wie z. B. die Kultivierung von Klassenkampf, Rassismus und Religionsdiskriminierung. Und letztlich ist ein Friede
ohne Freiheit kein wirklicher Friede, sondern eine Zwangsherrschaft, in der die
Menschen und Vlker in ihrer sittlichen Entfaltung gehindert werden. Freiheitsmindernde totalitre Ideologien wie Kommunismus, Nationalismus und Imperialismus, aber auch die theokratischen Formen des Islams, sind daher als strukturell friedensgefhrdend einzustufen.
Im Wertepluralismus der westlichen Gesellschaften werden die genannten
Grundwerte, besonders die Freiheit, immer noch von einem breiten Konsens
getragen, wenn auch die konkreten, speziell christlichen Ausformungen hufig
umstritten sind und in Europa immer mehr verblassen. Die Frage ist nun, ob
eine Verstndigung ber die Grundwerte des Friedens zwischen den westlichen, christlich geprgten Kulturen und jenen, die etwa islamisch dominiert
sind, berhaupt mglich ist. Denn der Friede zwischen den beiden Systemen
scheint eben auch von der Mglichkeit einer gegenseitigen Annherung, einer
schrittweisen Einigung auf einen gemeinsamen Grundwertbestand abzuhngen.
Solange der politische Islamismus zur Legitimierung der herrschenden Eliten,
zur Stabilisierung der Verhltnisse und zur Rechtfertigung weltweiter Expansion
fr die entsprechenden Staaten und Gruppen von Nutzen ist, wird es dem Westen kaum mglich sein, mit den totalitren Ansprchen eines geschlossenen

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Die kirchliche Friedenslehre vor neuen Problemen

189

Systems zu einem Konsens zu gelangen. Im Iran oder in Saudi-Arabien sind die


Grundwerte nicht Gegenstand freier gesellschaftlicher Kommunikation, sie werden vielmehr von der politisch-religisen Fhrungsschicht kontrolliert. Mit einem Regime, das durch Offenheit, Freizgigkeit und Toleranz so gefhrdet ist,
da es, um zu berleben, einen freien Dialog im Innern verbieten mu, lt sich
kaum ber Freiheit verhandeln.
Das Dilemma eines globalen Dialogs in Sachen Grundwerte ist gegenwrtig
kaum auflsbar. Schon der Beginn eines Dialogs setzt ja die Anerkennung bestimmter Grundregeln voraus, die nicht erst die Folgen einer intersubjektiven
Kommunikation sind. Man kann sich zum Beispiel nicht mit anderen ber den
Grundwert der Wahrhaftigkeit verstndigen, wenn man nicht schon whrend der
kommunikativen Verstndigung Wahrhaftigkeit praktiziert. hnliches gilt auch
fr die Grundwerte der Freiheit und Gerechtigkeit. Eine Verstndigung ber sie
ist nur in einer freien und gerechten Kommunikation mglich, in der sich alle
Beteiligten frei uern knnen und damit zu ihrem Recht kommen.
Der zur Zeit vorherrschende Weltfriede ist prekr und negativ, weil er sich
lediglich durch das Fehlen von greren Kriegen auszeichnet. Nicht, da dieser
Zustand nur negativ zu bewerten wre. Der relative Waffenstillstand ist jedoch
nicht sicher genug, denn er hlt nur an, solange das Prinzip von Angst und Abschreckung gewahrt bleibt. Die Sicherung des negativen Friedens ist aber unter den gegebenen Umstnden eine notwendige Bedingung fr den Aufbau eines
positiven Friedens, der dem Krieg und dem Terror die Grundlage entzieht.
Die Verwirklichung positiver Friedenswerte ereignet sich durch konkrete Entwicklungszusammenarbeit und durch Dialog. Damit knnten aber einschneidende Systemreformen in den beteiligten Lndern, vor allem in den islamischen, verbunden sein. Darum konzentrieren sich die Dialoge einstweilen auf
die Sicherung des negativen Friedens, auf eine Ebene also, auf der sich beide
Seiten entgegenkommen knnen, weil sie den gleichen berlebenswillen haben.
Diese dialogische Logik gilt allerdings nicht fr Terroristen, die den Selbstmord
taktisch und strategisch einkalkulieren, weshalb mit ihnen kein Dialog mglich
ist. Gerade hier zeigt sich die Fragilitt eines Friedens, dem ein positives Fundament fehlt.
III. Krieg ein Friedensmittel?
Besonders im Atomzeitalter zeigte sich, da der Krieg kein Mittel der Politik
zur Herstellung des Friedens sein kann, weshalb er als kalter und nicht als
nuklearer Krieg gefhrt wurde. Aber auch die vielen kleinen konventionellen
Kriege vor und nach 1989 knnen nicht verharmlosend als die Fortsetzung der
Politik mit anderen Mitteln angesehen werden, in Anlehnung an den preuischen Militrtheoretiker Carl von Clausewitz. Vielmehr sind Kriege immer ein

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190

Wolfgang Ockenfels

groes bel, auch wenn sie noch grere bel abwenden. Um untragbares Unrecht abzuwenden, kann jedoch ein Staat gerechtfertigt sein, einen Krieg zu
fhren.
In der Tradition der Kirche hat seit Augustinus die Lehre vom gerechten
Krieg eine Bndigung des Krieges versucht. Diese vom Wortlaut her miverstndliche Lehre wurde von christlichen Theologen gerade zum Zweck der Verhinderung und Eindmmung militrischer Gewalt entworfen. Sie unterliegt seit
Franz von Vitoria der Rationalitt von universalisierbaren und reziprok geltenden Kriterien, die nicht erst den Glauben voraussetzen. Heilige oder Glaubenskriege mten demnach prinzipiell ausgeschlossen werden.
Es wurden nicht nur Regeln und Bedingungen des Krieges (ius ad bellum)
aufgestellt, nach denen z. B. Eroberungskriege verboten werden, Verteidigungskriege aber unter Umstnden erlaubt sind. Es sind auch ethische und rechtliche
Normen zum Verhalten im Kriege (ius in bello) entwickelt worden. So hat die
Kirche im II. Vaticanum ein Verbot der Anwendung von Massenvernichtungswaffen ausgesprochen. Mit dem Ende des Kommunismus scheint die Gefahr
der Anwendung dieser Waffen noch nicht gebannt zu sein, wenn man sieht, wie
technisch aufgerstet heute Terroristen sind.
Andererseits entznden sich vielerorts (Balkan, Afrika etc.) neue inner- und
zwischenstaatliche Konflikte um die Rechte ethnischer, religiser oder kultureller Minderheiten. Zunehmend werden vlkerrechtliche Souvernittsansprche
durch menschenrechtlich begrndete humanitre Interventionen relativiert.
Dies wirft erneut Fragen nach der bellum iustum-Lehre auf.
Diese Lehre wird in ihrer Intention, Gewalt zu minimieren, neu zu formulieren und zu aktualisieren sein. Dies vor allem hinsichtlich asymmetrischer
Konflikte und terroristischer Herausforderungen. Wie soll man heute mit einem
international vernetzten Terrorismus verfahren, der zwischen globalem Brgerkrieg, Kamikaze-Aktion und Partisanenkampf angesiedelt ist? Auf diese Frage
gibt es noch keine schlssige Antwort des kirchlichen Lehramtes.
Die Legitimitt militrischer Gewalt hngt von folgenden Kriterien ab, die
jeweils eine Reihe von Fragen aufwerfen, die auch fr die Entwicklung und
Interpretation des Vlkerrechts von Belang sind:
1. Was gilt als gerechter Grund fr militrische Verteidigung? Wie gro mu
die Gefahr, wie drohend ein (mglicher, wahrscheinlicher?) Angriff, wie
schwerwiegend eine Rechtsverletzung sein? Wann erfllen auch prventive
militrische Manahmen den Begriff des Verteidigungskrieges? Was berechtigt zu humanitren Interventionen?
2. Welche Rechtsinstanz entscheidet ber den Einsatz militrischer Gewalt?
Hat sich das Entscheidungs- und Gewaltmonopol der einzelnen Nationalstaaten endgltig auf die supranationale Ebene der Vereinten Nationen ver-

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lagert? Ist der UN-Sicherheitsrat noch reprsentativ fr die globalen Machtverhltnisse? Ist er seiner Aufgabe recht- und machtmig gewachsen? Und
fhrt das Vetorecht einiger Mitglieder zur Selbstblockade?
3. Krieg als ultima ratio, als letztes Mittel, setzt zunchst die Anwendung
anderer Machtmittel voraus, politischer wie konomischer. Aber wie wirksam sind heute noch Wirtschaftssanktionen? Treffen sie das verantwortliche
Regime oder eher die notleidende Bevlkerung, die als Geisel gehalten
wird? Gibt es nicht auch die Pflicht, dieses letzte Mittel rechtzeitig anzuwenden, damit das bel nicht weiter um sich greift und das Recht verdrngt?
4. Welches Ziel einer wertgebundenen Friedensordnung soll und kann erreicht
werden? Als mgliche Ziele werden oft genannt: Entwaffnung des Regimes, Befreiung der Bevlkerung, Demokratie und Rechtsstaat. Die Legitimitt dieser Ziele vorausgesetzt: Werden sie durch die angewandten Mittel
diskreditiert? Bleibt der Grundsatz der Verhltnismigkeit der Mittel gewahrt? Lt die mgliche Folge militrischer Gewaltanwendung ein geringeres bel erwarten als deren Unterlassung? Und setzt diese Folgenabschtzung nicht einen Blick in die Zukunft mit ihren Unabwgbarkeiten voraus
und erffnet damit ein weites Feld fr Spekulationen und Propaganda?
5. Die Erlaubtheit der Mittel innerhalb eines Krieges (ius in bello) nimmt ihr
Ma vor allem am Schutz der Zivilbevlkerung. Von daher verbietet sich
die Anwendung von Massenvernichtungswaffen. Aber knnen nicht auch
konventionelle Przisionswaffen (unbeabsichtigt) verheerende Wirkungen
(Kollateralschden) entfalten? Und wie lt sich die Verbreitung von
ABC-Waffen verhindern, wenn sich diese bereits in den Hnden von
Schurkenstaaten und von global vernetzt operierenden Terrorgruppen befinden?
Die hier geforderten Gter- und belabwgungen knnen heute einen Staat
in ein unauflsbares Dilemma versetzen, weil eine vorausschauende klare Wertentscheidung in komplexen Situationen kaum noch mglich erscheint. Auch die
Kirchen wren berfordert, mit einem idealtypischen Entscheidungsmodell einen Ausweg aus diesem Dilemma zu weisen. Sie knnen den Politikern die
Gewissensentscheidung nicht abnehmen, aber zur Bildung und Schrfung des
Gewissens beitragen.
Eine wirksame Friedenshaltung mu sich als realistischer Verantwortungspazifismus zu erkennen geben, der die wahrscheinlichen Folgen politischen
Handelns und Unterlassens abwgt, und der die Grundwerte des Friedens nicht
unvermittelt und ohne Rcksicht auf Verluste durchsetzt. Diese Haltung unterscheidet sich von einem utopischen Gesinnungspazifismus, der glaubt, man
msse auf dem Weg zum positiven Frieden die Waffen ablegen, und der sich der
Hoffnung hingibt, da diese Haltung auch entwaffnend auf den Gegner wirkt.

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Wie ein nationaler Staat als Institution des inneren Friedens den Brgerkrieg
verhindert, so knnte der internationale Friede zwischen den Staaten durch die
Institution eines Weltstaates garantiert werden. Diese alte und immer neu faszinierende Vorstellung ist gewi utopisch und vielleicht nicht einmal wnschenswert, denn aus einem Weltstaat wre, sollte er sich als totalitr erweisen, eine
Emigration nicht mehr mglich und die Immigration knnte hchstens auf
einem anderen Planeten erfolgen. Aber die Kodifizierung einer internationalen
Rechtsordnung, abgesttzt auf angemessene Macht, die der Durchsetzung des
Rechts Nachdruck verleiht, knnte doch einen wichtigen Schritt in Richtung
Frieden bedeuten. Von einer weltweit institutionalisierten Friedensordnung sind
heute erst schwache Anstze sichtbar. Die weitgehend machtlosen und zuweilen
auch wertblinden Vereinten Nationen beweisen ja gerade, wie schwierig, aber
auch wie notwendig die Vereinigung der Nationen in einer positiven Friedensordnung ist.
IV. UN und Kirche als Friedensinstanzen
Bei der inhaltlichen Beantwortung der genannten Fragen von Krieg und Frieden beginnen freilich erst die praktisch-politischen Schwierigkeiten, so da
auch die Kirche oft berfordert ist, zu einer klaren und verbindlichen Entscheidung zu kommen. Ihr Ermessensurteil setzt die genaue Kenntnis der Umstnde
und Hintergrnde einer Konfliktsituation voraus, die oft erst nach einem Waffengang klar erkennbar sind.
Die Befrchtung, da ein Krieg zwischen den USA und dem Irak als ein
Glaubenskrieg zwischen Christentum und Islam erscheinen und sich zu einem
Welt-Religionskrieg entwickeln knnte, veranlate Johannes Paul II. dazu, dringend vor ihm zu warnen. Am 21. 2. 2003 sagte er gegenber indonesischen
Religionsfhrern: Mit der realen Mglichkeit eines Krieges vor Augen drfen
wir nicht der Politik erlauben, eine Quelle weiterer Teilungen unter den Weltreligionen zu werden. In der Tat, weder ein drohender Krieg noch der Krieg
selbst darf Christen, Muslime, Buddhisten, Hindus und Angehrige anderer Religionen einander entfremden. Als Religionsfhrer, die dem Frieden verpflichtet
sind, sollten wir stets daran arbeiten, gegenseitiges Verstehen, Zusammenarbeit
und Solidaritt zu verstrken. Er wiederholte: Krieg ist immer eine Niederlage fr die Menschheit und fgte hinzu: aber er ist auch eine Tragdie fr
die Religion.
Die politische Wirksamkeit kirchlicher Warnungen und vatikanischer Diplomatie hat sich als sehr begrenzt erwiesen. Aber der Papst, der sein grundstzliches Nein zum Krieg bekrftigt, schliet nicht die Mglichkeit eines legitimierten Krieges aus. Der Krieg als Gesamtphnomen ist immer ein bel, an
dem aber oft mehrere Parteien sehr unterschiedlich beteiligt sind. Unter Um-

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stnden, die eine rechtmige Instanz festzulegen hat, kann aber militrische
Gewaltanwendung fr eine Partei erlaubt sein, um grere bel abzuwenden.
Das Vertrauen, das gerade kirchliche Kreise auf die Vereinten Nationen setzen, speist sich aus der endzeitlichen Hoffnung auf einen ewigen Frieden, der
aber leider nicht institutionalisierbar ist. Der UN-Sicherheitsrat ist moralisch
und rechtlich nicht viel besser als die Summe, die Mehrheit oder auch nur eine
einzigen Vetostimme seiner Mitglieder. Dennoch gilt er als letzte Instanz des
Vlkerrechts, das gerade deshalb in stndiger Entwicklung begriffen ist und
kaum dauerhafte Rechtssicherheit gewhrt. Alle rechtlichen Mastbe scheinen
sich zu verschieben und werden auch noch unterschiedlich ausgelegt. Wie kann
man da noch klare und eindeutige Entscheidungen erwarten?
Und wenn es sie gbe, wer setzte sie durch? Die Vereinten Nationen haben
sich vor allem deswegen als machtlos erwiesen, weil die Kosten der militrischen Gewalt, die zur Durchsetzung des vertraglichen Rechts zuweilen notwendig ist, nicht einmal von den Nutznieern dieses Rechts mitgetragen werden.
Despoten und Gewaltherrscher haben wenig Respekt vor dem Menschen- und
Vlkerrecht und folgen den UN-Resolutionen oft erst dann, wenn sie durch
konomischen Druck und militrische Gewalt dazu gezwungen werden.
Wenn man wenigstens aus Rcksicht auf gemeinsame Geschftsinteressen
friedliche Konfliktlsungen anstreben wrde, knnte man ber den Verlust moralischer Werte und rechtlicher Regeln leichter hinwegkommen. Immanuel Kant
griff in seiner Schrift Zum ewigen Frieden noch auf den vermeintlichen
Mechanism der Natur zurck, nmlich auf den wechselseitigen Eigennutz
der Menschen: Es ist der Handelsgeist, der mit dem Kriege nicht zusammen
bestehen kann, und der frher oder spter sich jedes Volks bemchtigt. Als
Garanten des ewigen Friedens haben sich die eigenntzigen menschlichen
Neigungen leider nicht geschichtlich bewhrt, im Gegenteil. Es wre zu schn
gewesen, Kriege durch Marktwirtschaft und friedlichen Wettbewerb ablsen zu
knnen. Jetzt tritt die Globalisierung mit einigen hlichen Begleitern in Erscheinung. International vernetzt und technisch aufgerstet ist nun auch der Terrorismus, und der Krieg findet immer neue Grnde und Formen.
Mit dieser Art von Fortschritt und Modernisierung hat die friedensoptimistische Aufklrung sicher nicht gerechnet. Wohl auch deswegen nicht, weil sie die
positiven Wirkkrfte wie auch die gefhrlichen Gewaltpotentiale unterschtzte,
die in den unterschiedlichen Weltreligionen und Wertkulturen begrndet liegen.
Der Frieden ist ein zwiespltiger politisch-religiser Begriff. Als Inbegriff
menschlicher Sehnsucht ist er besonders anfllig fr ideologische Manipulationen, so da um seinetwillen die meisten Kriege gefhrt werden. Als geschichtliches Phnomen ist er nicht ewig, und als Gegenstand glubiger Hoffnung entzieht er sich rationaler Plan- und Machbarkeit. Andererseits ist der Ausbruch

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194

Wolfgang Ockenfels

eines Krieges nicht wie der eines Vulkans und als Naturereignis vielleicht
eines Tages technisch beherrschbar.
Angesichts von Krieg und Frieden mssen formale Zweckrationalitt und reines Rechtsdenken kapitulieren. Denn sie bekommen die religisen, moralischen
und kulturellen Implikationen dieses Problems nicht in den Griff. Ob es die
Religionsgemeinschaften und ihre Theologen begreifen und auch lsen knnen,
hngt nicht nur von ihrem guten Friedenswillen ab, sondern vor allem von der
Strke ihrer rationalen Argumente, mit denen sie die weltliche Wirklichkeit
nicht religis oder idealistisch berfordern.
Diese wertgebundene und dabei realistische Rationalitt hat sich vor allem zu
bewhren gegenber islamistischen Verschrfungen eines Typs von Religion,
die ihre Distanz zur politischen Macht erst noch mhsam erringen mu, um
friedensfhig und tolerant gegenber anderen Religionen und Kulturen zu werden.
Manchmal scheint es, als sei Papst Johannes Paul II. mitsamt der Kirche jene
letzte Friedensinstanz, die viele ersehnen. Nicht da sie einen dogmatischen
Wahrheitsanspruch darauf htte. Ihre Friedenslehre lt unterschiedliche Abwgungs- und Ermessensurteile zu und viele Fragen offen. Wie auch das Vlkerrecht. Die Frage ist, wie sich die Chancen fr ein weltweites interreligises
Friedensgesprch verbessern und institutionell festigen lassen. Da besonders
die katholische Kirche als Weltkirche diesem substantiellen Dialog vorangeht,
darf man fr wnschenswert und sogar notwendig erachten.
Literatur
Gerechter Friede. Hirtenbrief der deutschen Bischfe vom 27. 9. 2000
Glatzel, Norbert/Nagel, Ernst Josef (Hrsg.): Frieden in Sicherheit, Freiburg 1982
Maier, Hans: Politische Religionen ein Begriff und seine Grenzen. In: Die Neue
Ordnung 55,3 (2001), 164175
Ockenfels, Wolfgang: Die Dynamik des Friedens. In: H. B. Streithofen W. Ockenfels:
Diskussion um den Frieden. Slg. Walberberger Gesprche. Stuttgart 1974, 33115
Raddatz, Hans-Peter: Von Allah zum Terror? Mnchen 2002
Walzer, Michael: Gibt es den gerechten Krieg? Stuttgart 1982
Zsifkovits, Valentin: Der Frieden als Wert, Mnchen 1973

Zusammenfassung
Mit Frieden wird ein zentraler politischer und zugleich theologischer Wertbegriff
bezeichnet. Der Begriff wurde in der Geschichte oft von totalitren Ideologien mibraucht. Christlich orientierte Politik konzentriert sich auf eine Strategie der Gewalt-

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Die kirchliche Friedenslehre vor neuen Problemen

195

minimierung und auf die Realisierung positiver Friedenswerte. Frieden ist mehr als
das (nur negative) Fehlen von Krieg. Er zielt vielmehr auf eine (positive) globale Gemeinwohlordnung, auf mehr Wahrheit, Gerechtigkeit, Solidaritt und Freiheit. In der
Miachtung dieser Werte liegt die eigentliche Ursache des Krieges. Die Weltkirche ist
herausgefordert, den Dialog um diese Grundwerte besonders mit der islamischen Welt
zu fhren. Die kirchliche bellum iustum-Lehre bedarf in ihrer Intention, Gewalt zu
minimieren, der Aktualisierung.

Summary
Peace" is a central political and at the same time a theological value. In history the
term often has been misused by totalitarian ideologies. Christian policy concentrates
on a strategy to minimize force and to promote peace. Peace is more than just the
absence of war. It is rather directed in a positive sense towards a global order of common good, wherein truth, justice, solidarity, and freedom prevail. The disregard of
these values is the real cause of war. The Church is challenged to initiate dialogue
about these basic values, especially with the Islamic world. The church doctrine of the
bellum iustum, intended to minimize force, needs to be put into practice.

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A Spectrum of Opinion:
American Catholics and the War in Iraq
By Russell Shaw
I.
Michael Kinsley is a liberal journalist with whom I do not often agree, but a
Kinsley column appearing in The Washington Post in June of last year got
things exactly right. He was discussing the fact that people responding to public opinion polls time and again declare themselves certain about matters where
certainty is impossible.
This was eminently true of matters pertaining to the war in Iraq, Kinsley
pointed out. After citing several examples, he wrote:
The most striking thing about polls . . . isn't how many people believe or disbelieve
some unproven factual assertion or prediction but how few give the only correct
answer, which is Don't know.' In [a] Fox News poll, vast majorities expressed
certitude one way or the other about the existence of [weapons of mass destruction]
in Iraq, the likelihood of peace in the Middle East and so on. Those who voted not
sure' . . . rarely broke 20 percent and usually hovered around 10. Four-fifths or more
were sure about everything.1

This is a useful reminder for anyone who ventures to speak about Iraq.
I know from my own experience what Kinsley was talking about. In response
to one column I wrote, I got an e-mail that began: I strongly disagree with
your assessment of the Iraq war. As a Catholic and a retired army reserve officer, I am absolutely convinced that this was a just war according to the principles enunciated by St. Augustine and other Church fathers and that it was conducted justly. I believe this even if no WMDs are ever found; though I believe
they will be. Another gentleman wrote to say that I was a journalist and therefore almost certainly wrong, while he was an engineer and therefore almost
certainly right. These were among the more rational comments I received.
The intrinsic uncertainties involved in crucial questions of fact concerning
Iraq make it difficult to see how moral judgment for or against the war the
jus ad bellum considerations, as they are called in just war language could
have been, or even now can be, entirely certain. For example: If the Americans
1

Michael Kinsley, Untethered to Reality, The Washington Post, June 20, 2003.

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Russell Shaw

and British had not attacked Saddam Hussein in March of 2003, what as a matter of fact would he have done? Would he then have rushed to assemble a
deadly array of weapons of mass destruction, and either launched them against
us himself or shared them with terrorists? Or would he have settled down to a
semi-permanent regimen of angry rhetoric and hollow threats? Who knows?
Yet the moral assessment of this conflict depends in large measure on which
answer you think is correct.
I have much sympathy for the government officials and military people responsible for setting and carrying out American policy in Iraq. As a private
citizen, whose views have little or no influence on policy, I enjoy the luxury of
being uncertain. These people do not. As the Catechism of the Catholic Church
remarks, The evaluation of [the] conditions for moral legitimacy belongs to the
prudential judgment of those who have responsibility for the common good.2
That is an awesome burden.
At the same time, this statement of the Catechism should not be pressed to
bear more weight than it can sustain. The duty and right of public authorities to
set policy does not as was sometimes alleged during the run-up to the war
cancel my duty and right, as a citizen and a person of faith, to form my conscience on public issues as well as I can. Admitting I could be wrong does
not oblige me to say, The government therefore has to be right.
Declarations of certitude were heard on all sides in the United States during
the intra-Catholic debate about Iraq, even though wildly different conclusions
were often expressed. This was not uniquely true of Catholics, of course; but
sometimes I wonder whether our moral tradition causes us to expect certitude
rather more than many other people do.
I am not a moral relativist. I take for granted the existence of absolute moral
norms. I agree entirely with Pope John Paul II when he says absolute norms are
an indispensable prerequisite of a just society. As he puts it: In the end, only a
morality which acknowledges certain norms as valid always and for everyone,
with no exception, can guarantee the ethical foundation of social coexistence,
both on the national and international levels.3 I have no doubt that is so.
Still, it is important not to confuse certitude about moral norms with certitude about murky and contingent questions of fact. Many things important to
judging the situation in Iraq were not clear when we went to war and are not
entirely clear even now: for example, the relationship between terrorist groups
and the Iraqi regime.

2
3

Catechism of the Catholic Church, n. 2309.


Pope John Paul II, Veritatis Splendor, n. 97.2.

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A Spectrum of Opinion: American Catholics and the War in Iraq

199

My first purpose here is to give an overview of the spectrum of American


Catholic opinion a kind of snapshot of what was being said in those critical
months and weeks before and just after the war was fought. I do not carry the
analysis much beyond the middle of last year, although that also would be an
interesting exercise. I shall skip the ad hominem sniping, the anti-Americanism,
and the other bits of nastiness that often colored the debate as churchmen and
theologians and others argued their cases in the heat of the moment. Do you
find it surprising, by the way, that churchmen and theologians can be extremely
disagreeable in debate? I don't. After all, nothing makes some people freer in
saying harsh things about others than certainty unless, perhaps, it is uncertainty.
II.
Let us begin our examination of the spectrum with Catholic pacifism. I mean
no disparagement of pacifism in saying it is the easiest position to describe,
since anyone opposed in principle to war and violence was naturally opposed to
war and violence in Iraq. Still, we do need to distinguish two different kinds of
pacifism: pure or absolute pacifism, which rejects all war and violence period; and functional pacifism, which hedges the use of violence with so many
conditions and restrictions as almost, if not quite entirely, to rule it out.
Absolute pacifism is easily illustrated in the case of the traditionally pacifist
Catholic Worker movement. A page-one editorial in the seventieth anniversary
issue of The Catholic Worker newspaper had this to say about Iraq:
We ask fellow believers to ponder their own conflicts of conscience, between nationalism, which can quickly metamorphose into unbridled idolatry, and the
Church's mandate to respect life and to work for peace for all peoples. Furthermore, we encourage Catholics to refuse to obey this idolatrous state, for the sake of
lasting peace.
We stand together in saying no to war, this one or any other . . .
War never again!4

The theme of nationalism as a threat also appeared in some other, non-pacifist Catholic critiques.
As for functional pacifism, I turn to a statement issued in December, 2002,
by the Catholic peace organization Pax Christi USA. It made a number of arguments against the war: the suffering already endured by the Iraqi people, the
prospect of countless casualties (including thousands of American soldiers
and tens of thousands of Iraqi civilians), environmental devastation, the likelihood that America's allies would be alienated and anti-Americanism would
4

Stand For Peace, The Catholic Worker, May, 2003.

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200

Russell Shaw

increase. It said there was no evidence of Iraqi involvement in the 9/11 terrorist
attacks or of Iraqi support for al Qaeda, and denied that Iraq currently posed a
threat to its neighbors.
Pax Christi USA also made an argument touching on questions of international law as well as Catholic social doctrine. It is worth quoting at length:
Pax Christi USA fundamentally challenges the Bush administration's foreign policy doctrine. While the Bush doctrine says a strike on Iraq would extend the benefits of freedom, democracy, prosperity and the rule of law,' waging a war on Iraq
will instead tear apart the seams of international security, opening the door to the
establishment of policies based solely on regime change in sovereign states. Every
nation that has ever practiced regime change as a policy has been condemned by
history as an aggressor nation. Therefore Pax Christi USA finds the Bush administration's policy of regime change both unwise and unjust and thoroughly incompatible with any criteria for establishing the basis for peace.5

Similar criticisms turned up elsewhere on the spectrum of Catholic opinion.


In fact, one of the ironies of the intra-Catholic debate was the convergence in
opposition to the war between Catholic pacifists on the one hand and Catholic
paleoconservatives on the other. Prominent figures in this latter school included
Patrick Buchanan and Joseph Sobran, political writer for the Catholic weekly
The Wanderer and other publications.
The paleoconservatives' position appeared to be based on philosophical convictions about limited government and on geopolitical views about America's
role in the world. From both perspectives, they saw Iraq as an instance of serious overreaching, an exercise in national hubris, which the United States most
likely would come to regret.
The paleoconservatives' opposition also was strongly colored by the belief
that the war was in the interests of Israel more than the United States. Buchanan argued this view in a long article in the March, 2003, issue of his magazine
The American Conservative. It contains many quotations from government officials, academics, and journalists to support and illustrate its thesis. I quote two
paragraphs at the heart of it:
This is a time for truth. For America is about to make a momentous decision:
whether to launch a series of wars in the Middle East that could ignite the Clash of
Civilizations against which Harvard professor Samuel Huntington has warned, a war
we believe would be a tragedy and a disaster for this Republic. To avert this war,
to answer the neocon[servative] smears, we ask our readers to review their agenda
as stated in their words . . .
We charge that a cabal of polemicists and public officials seek to ensnare our country in a series of wars that are not in America's interests. We charge them with
colluding with Israel to ignite those wars and destroy the Oslo Accords [the 1993
5

Pax Christi USA Statement on War Against Iraq, December 10, 2002.

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A Spectrum of Opinion: American Catholics and the War in Iraq

201

agreed outline for an Israeli-Palestinian settlement]. We charge them with deliberately damaging U.S. relations with every state in the Arab world that defies Israel
or supports the Palestinian people's right to a homeland of their own. We charge
that they have alienated friends and allies all over the Islamic and Western world
through their arrogance, hubris, and bellicosity.6

Patrick Buchanan, it will be observed, is no mean polemicist himself.


Joseph Sobran sometimes also took this line, but he tended to place more
emphasis on the notion of limited government. In one column, for instance, he
contrasted the visceral conservative typified by the pro-war National Review and The Weekly Standard with the anti-war views of a genuine conservative like himself. Of the latter, he wrote:
The true conservative, though he may accept war as a tragic necessity at times,
regards it with foreboding and a sense of loss, never with enthusiasm. All political
enthusiasm is against his grain. His patriotism doesn't preclude skepticism about his
rulers; even the most venerable institutions, he knows, are bound to be administered
by men flawed by original sin.

As to the Iraq war, Sobran said:


It all began with the 9/11 attacks. These quickly led to all sorts of wild charges
against Iraq that it was harboring terrorists, sharing WMDs with them, and so
forth. Skepticism about these charges was shouted down. The drive for war took on
a life of its own spearheaded by the neoconservatives' who had sought to destroy
Iraq long before 9/11 and the doubtfulness and even irrelevance of many of the
charges didn't seem to matter. Nor do they seem to matter now. The war's apologists will keep coming up with new justifications for what has already been done.7

Among the neoconservative supporters of the war about whom Sobran and
Buchanan complained were several prominent Catholics, who argued along specifically just war lines. Michael Novak, George Weigel, and Father Richard
John Neuhaus are representative of this group.
In January, 2003, Weigel published an article in the journal First Things in
which he more or less systematically applied just war criteria to the situation
created by new weapons technology and so-called rogue states.8 In summary,
the run-down went like this.
Just cause. New weapons capabilities and outlaw or rogue' states require a
development of the concept of defense against aggression' . . . [I]t makes little
moral sense to suggest that the United States must wait until a North Korea or
Iraq or Iran actually launches a ballistic missile tipped with a nuclear, biological, or chemical weapon of mass destruction before we can legitimately do
6 Patrick J. Buchanan, Whose War?, The American Conservative, March 24,
2003.
7 Joseph Sobran's Washington Watch, The Wanderer, June 26, 2003.
8 George Weigel, Moral Clarity in a Time of War, First Things, January 2003.

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something about it. Can we not say that, in the hands of certain kinds of states,
the mere possession of weapons of mass destruction constitutes an aggression
or, at the very least, an aggression waiting to happen?
Competent authority. That the UN Charter itself recognizes an inalienable
national right to self-defense suggests that the Charter does not claim sole authority to legitimate the use of armed force for the Security Council . . . What
kind of moral logic is it to claim that the U.S. government must assuage the
interests of the French foreign ministry and the strategic aims of the repressive
Chinese government both of which are in full play in the Security Council
in order to gain international moral authority for the war against terrorism and
the defense of world order against outlaw states with weapons of mass destruction?
Last resort. Can we not say that last resort has been satisfied in those cases
when a rogue state has made plain, by its conduct, that it holds international
law in contempt and that no diplomatic solution to the threat it poses is likely,
and when it can be demonstrated that the threat the rogue state poses is intensifying? I think we can. Indeed, I think we must.
Of course, other Catholics operating from a just war perspective concluded
that this war would not meet jus ad bellum standards governing the resort to
war. That notably was the case with Pope John Paul II. Although my particular
focus in this paper is the American Catholic view of the war, that can hardly be
appreciated apart from reference to the Pope.
III.
Some of the comments from Rome went beyond just war arguments and ventured into other, problematical areas. At times one could detect functional pacifism, at other times anti-Americanism. This was not true of John Paul, but it
was true of some of those around him so much so that a friend of mine from
the United States who works in the Curia remarked to me over lunch in Rome
just after war broke out that those were not easy times to be an American at the
Vatican.
These things are part of the story, but the important question is: What did the
Pope say?
First of all, it is necessary to recall that he pressed his campaign for peace in
many ways besides making statements. He met with Tony Blair, Tariq Aziz,
and other prominent personages. He dispatched Cardinal Roger Etchegaray to
Baghdad to see Saddam Hussein, and Cardinal Pio Laghi to Washington to see
President Bush. He also gave at least tacit encouragement to a series of public
comments by such other Vatican worthies as Cardinal Angelo Sodano, the Se-

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cretary of State, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, the prefect of the Congregation for
the Doctrine of the Faith, Cardinal James Francis Stafford, an American who at
the time was president of the Pontifical Council for the Laity, Cardinal Roberto
Tucci, former head of Vatican Radio, Archbishop Renato Martino, president of
the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, Archbishop (now Cardinal) JeanLouis Tauran, who then was the Secretary for Relations with States, and others.
By any standards, this was a major effort by the Holy See.
No doubt the clearest thing about the Pope's position was that he was passionately opposed to the war. This opposition was more and more forcefully and
passionately stated as time went by. The nearest thing to a systematic exposition of his views can be found in his annual address to the diplomatic corps
accredited to the Holy See, delivered January 13, 2003. Its theme was the primacy of natural law in international relations. Here John Paul sets out principles that he sees as the basis of world justice and peace a yes to life',
respect for law, the duty of solidarity, no to death, no to selfishness,
and lastly no to war. Under this last heading, he says:
War is not always inevitable. It is always a defeat for humanity. International law,
honest dialogue, solidarity between states, the noble exercise of diplomacy: these
are methods worthy of individuals and nations in resolving their differences . . . And
what are we to say of the threat of a war that could strike the people of Iraq, the
land of the prophets, a people already sorely tried by more than twelve years of
embargo? War is never just another means that one can choose to employ for settling differences between nations. As the charter of the United Nations and international law itself remind us, war cannot be decided upon, even when it is a matter of
ensuring the common good, except as the very last option and in accordance with
very strict conditions, without ignoring the consequences for the civilian population
both during and after the military operations.9

A critic of the Pope's position on Iraq suggests that his stand was motivated
by interrelated concerns in six areas. These are: 1. a significant rise in terrorist
activity; 2. an escalation of Christian-Muslim tensions into the dreaded clash of
civilizations; 3. the danger of reprisals against the small, vulnerable Christian
communities in the Middle East; 4. damage to the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, particularly in regard to protecting the Holy Places; 5. the disturbing implications of the idea of preemptive or preventive war; and 6. the legitimation of American unilateralism at the expense of the United Nations.10
In considering Pope John Paul's position, it is helpful recall two other things.

9 Pope John Paul II, Address to the Diplomatic Corps, No to Death, No to Selfishness, No to War, Yes to Life, Yes to Peace, L'Osservatore Romano, Weekly Edition
in English, January 15, 2003.
10 Michael M. Uhlmann, The Use and Abuse of Just-War Theory, Claremont Review of Books, summer 2003.

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First, he also opposed the first Gulf War in 1991. The reason appears to have
been based on the consideration that alternatives to war existed.
Second, the Holy See supported the post-9/11 American-led military attack
on Afghanistan in 2001. Although this backing was expressed in a low-key
manner, compared with the opposition to the war in Iraq a year and a half later,
the support was quite real.
What made Afghanistan different from Iraq? Evidently Rome saw Afghanistan as a case of legitimate self-defense by the Americans. Al Qaeda had used
the country as its base for years with the connivance of the Taliban regime; the
Taliban refused to stop sheltering al Qaeda after 9/11, even when directly challenged to do so; thus military action was the only means available to the United
States to defend itself against further terrorist attacks launched by al Qaeda
with the support of the Taliban.
Many bishops and bishops' conferences also made statements on the war in
Iraq. Like the Vatican, most were critical. The United States Conference of
Catholic Bishops issued several statements that stopped short of condemning
the war but expressed doubts about its conformity to just war standards. A statement by the body of American bishops at their general meeting in November,
2002, said in part:
Based on the facts that are known to us, we continue to find it difficult to justify
the resort to war against Iraq, lacking clear and adequate evidence of an imminent
attack of a grave nature. With the Holy See and bishops from the Middle East and
around the world, we fear that resort to war, under present circumstances and in
light of current public information, would not meet the strict conditions in Catholic
teaching for overriding the strong presumption against the use of military force.11

IV.
Some time late in 2002 I began telling my family and friends, I watched the
first Gulf War on television in a hotel room in Rome, and it looks like I'm
going to watch the next one the same way. On March 21, 2003, with shock
and awe underway in Iraq, I boarded a plane at Dulles Airport and flew to
Rome.
In the days that followed, I spent a lot of time watching the war unfold via
CNN, the BBC, and, now and then, via the considerably starker, grimmer ima11 Office of Communications, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Bishops Express Serious Concerns and Questions' about Possible War with Iraq, November 13, 2002. George Weigel, for one, does not agree that there is a presumption
against war in the just war tradition. It is an argument probably best left to Weigel
and the bishops. See George Weigel, Moral Clarity in a Time of War, First Things,
January, 2003.

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A Spectrum of Opinion: American Catholics and the War in Iraq

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ges available on Al Jazeera. Instead of being in a hotel room, though, I was in


Saint Martha's House the Vatican guesthouse next to Saint Peter's. It is disorienting to watch the mayhem and destruction of modern warfare unfold, with
the greatest shrine in Christendom looming in your window.
As time went by, I became conscious of something even odder than that
something happening not on the television screen in the corner of my room but
inside me. A televised war, I discovered, can become rather dull. Much time
was spent on briefings by military people and press conferences by civilian
officials and politicians. Hardly exciting stuff. Even the scenes of action the
shooting, the explosions grew stale as the networks repeated the same footage
over and over. And eventually I found myself thinking, Come on let's have
some action! A little excitement, please! Let's blow something up!
Televised war had become a form of entertainment. When it failed to entertain me, I felt cheated. Do we need another just war criterion? It would fit
under the heading of jus in bello moral norms governing the conduct of war
and might go something like this: Do not turn killing human beings into entertainment for jaded television viewers. War is not an extension of the Super
Bowl.
Before the war began, I expressed my views, among other places, in a question-and-answer interview with Zenit, an international Catholic internet news
agency based in Rome.12 The interview also was published in the National Catholic Register. It appeared online a week before the fighting began. The war
nevertheless went ahead on schedule despite me.
Since I have been quoting other people as a matter of accuracy and honesty,
I shall also take the liberty of quoting myself. In reply to a question about why
the White House and the Vatican disagreed, I said this:
Leaving aside rhetoric and name-calling and there has been plenty of both in
this debate the main reason for the difference concerns differing prudential judgments. President Bush and his people believe the consequences of not going to war
especially the risk of Iraqi weapons of mass destruction ending up in the hands of
terrorists would significantly outweigh the bad consequences. The Holy Father
and his people clearly believe that whatever good might come from overthrowing
Saddam Hussein would not be proportionate to the bad results, such as provoking
more terrorism, adding fuel to the burgeoning Christian-Muslim conflict already
being played out in other areas of the world, and causing longterm damage to the
United Nations and the international common good. For the most part, I think, the
Vatican and the White House share the same moral principles, but they disagree
about the likely outcomes of various courses of action. On the whole, I believe the
Vatican's view is the correct one.

12

Zenit news agency, March 13, 2003.

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Another question was whether the prudential judgment about going to war
did not rest with the public authorities, while other people, including churchmen, were obliged to defer to them. I answered as follows:
There are several ways of responding to that. For one thing, the United States is
hardly the only country likely to be impacted by what does or doesn't happen in
Iraq, so it seems to me an instance of unilateralism to say that the relevant prudential judgment belongs only to the civil authorities of the United States. Many nations have interests at stake here and have a right to be involved in the decision. As
for the right of the Church authorities to speak out and be heard, it is necessary to
recognize that they bring a special, and highly relevant, dimension to this matter
which legitimates their participation in the debate. On the whole, they are far more
politically disinterested than the civil authorities can possibly be, and they also are,
as one might expect, far more in touch with the Christian moral tradition. When,
responding to the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, the United States attacked
al Qaeda and the Taliban regime in Afghanistan, the Holy See supported that action
on the grounds that it was legitimate self-defense and I do not recall hearing people who now invoke the dividing line between God and Caesar doing so then.

After the war, my interim conclusions were summed up in a column published in several Catholic newspapers.13 On the jus in bello issues relating to
how the war had been fought, I wrote:
Credit the coalition . . . with trying to hold down civilian casualties as just war
doctrine demands. But the cruise missiles and smart bombs still sometimes malfunctioned or went astray through human error, and many innocent people we may
never know the actual number were killed or maimed.
That raises the question of whether, despite good intentions, the enormous destructiveness of sophisticated modern weaponry makes observing just war criteria like
proportionality' and discrimination' a practical impossibility today.

And on jus ad bellum matters I said this:


As to the war's purposes Saddam Hussein is gone, and the departure of this
tyrant and his evil regime is a big plus. The danger is that Saddam's toppling will
be used as precedent for more, reckless adventures in regime toppling . . .
What about the famous weapons of mass destruction? None have been found at
least, not yet. Perhaps they will be. But if they aren't, it will be hard not to conclude either that American intelligence was very bad or the American government
played fast and loose with facts to get its way. Or possibly a bit of both.
Again troubling to say the least. As are the early signs that victory on the battlefield in Iraq may not have reduced the overall terrorist threat.

I would see no reason to make changes in any of those summary statements


now.

13 Russell Shaw, What's Next for Iraq?, Arlington Catholic Herald, June 19,
2003.

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A Spectrum of Opinion: American Catholics and the War in Iraq

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I might add, though, that as time goes by, it becomes clearer that, underlying
the reasons for war offered to Americans at the time, was a geopolitical strategy for political change and stabilization in the Middle East, within the framework of American hegemony.14 So, for instance, President Bush's National Security Advisor, Condoleezza Rice, likened the U.S. role in the Middle East to
the role it played in the reconstruction of Europe after World War II.
With the liberation of Iraq, there is a special opportunity to advance a positive
agenda for the Middle East that will strengthen security in the region and throughout the world . . . From Morocco to the Persian Gulf, nations are taking genuine
steps toward political and economic openness. The United States supports these
steps, and we will work with our friends and allies for more.

Rice left no doubt that getting rid of Saddam Hussein was the necessary first
step toward turning the dream into a reality.15
In concluding my own interim assessment, I made it a point to say that an
interim assessment was all that was really possible where the prospects for a
peaceful, democratic Iraq were concerned. I wrote:
[P]ostwar Iraq is a work in progress. We are far from knowing how it will turn
out, and at this stage triumphalism and prophecies of doom are equally premature.
All that can be said with certainty of and by those of us who opposed the war
on moral grounds before the fact is that military victory hasn't proved us wrong.
The future is anybody's guess.

I think that is still true.


V.
Finally, I want briefly to discuss two special questions that often came up in
the intra-Catholic debate about Iraq. The first was whether Catholics who disagreed with the Pope and supported the war were dissenters. The second was
why the Pope and the Holy See put so much emphasis on acting within the
framework of the United Nations.

14 John B. Judis writes of what he calls the new imperialism as an element in the
thinking of neoconservatives in and out of government who exert an influence on
American policy: Like [Theodore] Roosevelt and the late-nineteenth-century expansionists, the new imperialists want to transform the politics and allegiances of countries and regions, and they are willing to use force unilaterally to do so. Like the old
imperialists, the new ones see overseas intervention in evangelical, although secular,
terms. Among the neoconservatives of this persuasion Judis lists people like Paul
Wolfowitz, William Kristol, Richard Perle, and Robert Kagan. John B. Judis, History
Lesson, The New Republic, June 9, 2003.
15 Condoleezza Rice, Transforming the Middle East, The Washington Post, August 7, 2003.

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Start with the first question. Some of those who accused people like Michael
Novak and George Weigel of being dissenters were plainly just having fun
turning the tables on ideological opponents in the Church who, on other issues,
had accused them of dissent. Still, to the extent the accusation may sometimes
have been meant seriously, it was missing the point.
With the exception of the Catholic pacifists, the arguments from morality
made by Catholics both for and against this war expressed prudential judgments
based on matters of fact that were not clear and allowed for a legitimate variety
of opinions. To use an earlier example: Did Saddam Hussein have weapons of
mass destruction or did he not; and if he had them, did he mean to use them? It
made an enormous difference how one answered that; and despite assertions of
certitude one way or the other, before the war no one could really be sure. The
same is true of other jus ad bellum issues.
To say that people who concluded that the preponderance of evidence pointed to the rightness of the war were dissenting from papal teaching was absurd.
Pope John Paul also was expressing a prudential judgment in condemning the
war, and, although he expressed it passionately and frequently, nothing he said
suggested anything to the contrary.
One might also ask, as some did, whether Catholic soldiers were at liberty to
participate in the war on the side of the coalition, despite the Pope's opposition
to the war. Very many did, of course. This is what I said in my Zenit interview:
Catholics in the armed forces should react on this occasion as they always should
react by forming their consciences in light of sound moral principles, the counsel
of prudent moral advisors including those who speak for the Magisterium of the
Church, and their best understanding of the facts, and then doing what their consciences tell them to do. I suppose most if not all will elect to carry out the orders
of their military commanders to the best of their ability. If they do that on the basis
of sincerely formed judgments of conscience, they won't hear any criticism from
me.16

Archbishop Edwin F. O'Brien of the Military Archdiocese for the United


States took a similar line in a March 25 letter to Catholic military chaplains.17
The second issue concerns the United Nations and the importance Pope John
Paul and the Holy See attached to it. Many American Catholics seemed to find
this incomprehensible. As one of my correspondents put it, The role of the UN
is clearly to subvert the authority of the U.S. and other free countries, especially those that would foster the spread of Christianity.
For Catholics who think this way, Pope John Paul's stand was especially
hard to understand, considering that he had tangled with the UN on several
16
17

Zenit news agency, March 13, 2003.


Carrying Out Military Duties in Good Conscience, Origins, April 3, 2003.

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A Spectrum of Opinion: American Catholics and the War in Iraq

209

well-publicized occasions in the past over abortion, population control, and


other issues. In the case of Iraq, nevertheless, he and the Holy See insisted that
any action should be taken within the framework and with the authorization of
the UN. Why was that?
Start with the fact that the Holy See has supported the United Nations from
the beginning. There are Vatican observer missions at the UN in New York and
Geneva; the Vatican regularly takes part in UN meetings of all kinds. This may
partly reflect the Holy See's desire to be a player on the international scene; it
was not so many years ago, after all, that Pope Benedict XV sought and rather humiliatingly was refused a place at the peace talks after World War I.
But a more fundamental reason, I believe, can be found in a papal document
published four decades ago. I mean Pope John XXIII's encyclical Pacem in
Terris. On a number of occasions in 2003, its fortieth anniversary year, John
Paul II and the Holy See have made it point to stress its continued relevance
and importance. For example, the Pope's message for the annual World Day of
Peace was entitled Pacem in Terris: A Permanent Commitment.
But a commitment to what? John Paul says an important dimension of the
prophetic character of Pacem in Terris is its advocacy of an international
public authority committed to, and able to promote, the universal common
good. He writes:
Not surprisingly therefore John XXIII looked with hope and expectation to the
United Nations Organization, which had come into being on June 26, 1945. He saw
that Organization as a credible instrument for maintaining and strengthening world
peace, and he expressed particular appreciation of its 1948 Universal Declaration of
Human Rights, which he considered an approximation towards the establishment of
a juridical and political organization of the world community.' What he was saying
in fact was that the Declaration set out the moral foundations on which the evolution of a world characterized by order rather than disorder, and by dialogue rather
than force, could proceed. He was suggesting that the vigorous defense of human
rights by the United Nations Organization is the indispensable foundation for the
development of that Organization's capacity to promote and defend international
security.18

No one who reads either Pope John's encyclical or Pope John Paul's Peace
Day message can suppose that these popes regard the United Nations as it
existed in 1963 or as it exists now as the ideal embodiment of an international public authority committed to the common good of all nations and peoples.
But neither can anyone miss the fact that they consider the UN, with all its
faults and weaknesses, to be an essential step along the way. This is the reason,
I believe, why Pope John Paul insisted on working within the United Nations
18 Pope John Paul II, Message for the World Day of Peace, L'Osservatore Romano,
Weekly Edition in English, December 18/25, 2002.

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210

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framework in the case of Iraq; in his view, to do otherwise risked weakening


the UN and undermining the longrange papal plan for a just and peaceful world
order.
Foreign policy realists will consider what I have just said an example of utopian unreality and a good illustration of why the Holy See's position on international issues need not be taken seriously. My own view is that, given the
dangerous instability of the world we live in, and given the grave risks to the
United States in attempting to exercise global hegemony no matter how good
the intentions may be the ideal held up by John XXIII and John Paul II is the
truly realistic option before us.
But of course I could be wrong.
Summary
Before the Iraq war American Catholics were divided, even though many agreed in
attempting to analyze the situation by just war (jus ad bellum) criteria. Catholic commentary extended from the opposition of pacifists to the support of neoconservatives.
Pope John Paul II and the Holy See strenuously opposed the war. A focal point of the
Pope's critique concerned the initiation of war without specific United Nations authorization. But Catholics who supported the war were not dissenting from papal
teaching, since the Pope's position, like the positions of other Catholics arguing
from just war grounds, was based on prudential judgments allowing for a range of
opinions.

Zusammenfassung
Vor dem Irakkrieg waren die amerikanischen Katholiken geteilter Meinung, auch
wenn viele dazu neigten, die Situation gem den Kriterien des gerechten Krieges (ius
ad bellum) zu analysieren. Katholische Kommentare reichten von der Opposition seitens der Pazifisten bis hin zur Untersttzung der Neokonservativen. Papst Johannes
Paul II. und der Heilige Stuhl waren klar gegen den Krieg. Ein Schwerpunkt der Kritik des Papstes betraf den Beginn des Krieges ohne die Autorisierung durch die Vereinten Nationen. Katholiken jedoch, die den Krieg mittrugen, gerieten zur ppstlichen
Lehre nicht in Widerspruch, weil die Position des Papstes hnlich wie diejenige
anderer Katholiken, die von den Kriterien des gerechten Krieges ausgingen letztlich
vom klugen Abwgen bestimmt war, was eine Reihe von Meinungen zult.

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War der Irakkrieg ein bellum iustum?


Von Manfred Spieker
I. Die bellum-iustum-Lehre auf dem Prfstand
Im Pro und Contra einer militrischen Intervention im Irak stand die Lehre
vom gerechten Krieg erneut auf dem Prfstand. Lie sich der Krieg gegen Saddam Hussein sittlich rechtfertigen? Ist die Lehre vom bellum iustum berhaupt
tauglich zur Beantwortung dieser Frage?
Schon in den Reaktionen auf die Terroranschlge von New York, Washington und Pennsylvania am 11. September 2001 stand die bellum-iustum-Lehre
zur Debatte. In ihrem Manifest What we're fighting for vom Februar 2002
erklrten 59 amerikanische Politologen und Publizisten den Anti-Terror-Krieg
zu einem just war.1 Zu den Unterzeichnern des Manifests gehrten Samuel
Huntington, Francis Fukuyama, Amitai Etzioni, Michael Walzer, aber auch
zahlreiche Katholiken wie Michael Novak, George Weigel, Mary Ann Glendon,
Robert P. George und Robert Royal. Ihnen antworteten deutsche Intellektuelle,
darunter Hans-Peter Drr, Walter Jens, Dorothee Slle und Friedrich Schorlemmer: Der Krieg der so genannten Anti-Terror-Allianz in Afghanistan ist kein
gerechter Krieg ein unglckseliger historischer Begriff, den wir nicht akzeptieren. Der Anti-Terror-Krieg sei vielmehr ein geostrategischer Krieg zur Festigung der amerikanischen Hegemonie.2 Die Erklrung, ein bestimmter Begriff
sei historisch oder unglckselig und man akzeptiere ihn nicht, war zwar
kein Argument, das den Anforderungen eines rationalen Diskurses entsprach,
aber auch als Bekenntnis markierte sie die gegenstzlichen Standpunkte.
In der Debatte um den Krieg gegen Saddam Hussein war die Spaltung der
Intellektuellen nicht weniger manifest. Whrend Richard Land, ein fhrender
Vertreter der Sdlichen Baptisten in den USA einen solchen Krieg fr gerecht,
ja fr einen Akt der christlichen Nchstenliebe hielt,3 nannte ein deutscher
1 What we're fighting for, in: Politisches Denken: Jahrbuch 2003, hrsg. von Karl
Graf Ballestrem u. a., Stuttgart 2003, S. 223 ff. Auszge in: Bltter fr deutsche und
internationale Politik (2002), S. 756 ff.
2 Eine Welt der Gerechtigkeit und des Friedens sieht anders aus Eine Antwort
auf das Manifest Gerechter Krieg gegen den Terror vom 2.5.2002, in: Bltter fr
deutsche und internationale Politik (2002), S. 763 ff.
3 Richard Land, Die Zeit ruft nach Gewalt, in: Rheinischer Merkur vom 13.2.2003.

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212

Manfred Spieker

Philosoph einen solchen Begrndungsversuch einen Rckfall ins Mittelalter.


Die Renaissance der Lehre vom gerechten Krieg bedeute eine moralische Aufrstung gegen das geltende Vlkerrecht.4 Auch der seit 1. Oktober 2002 amtierende Prsident des Ppstlichen Rates Justitia et Pax, der im Oktober 2003 zum
Kardinal ernannte Renato Martino, erklrte die bellum-iustum-Lehre fr berholt. Er zog eine Parallele zur Todesstrafe, die im Katechismus der katholischen Kirche von 1993 zwar noch in schwerwiegendsten Fllen akzeptiert
worden sei,5 von Papst Johannes Paul II. aber in seiner Enzyklika Evangelium
Vitae 1995 fr nicht mehr notwendig erklrt wurde.6 Dies gelte auch, so Martino, fr den Fall des Krieges. Die moderne Gesellschaft verfge ber die Mittel, um den Krieg zu vermeiden.7 Welche Mittel dies sind, darauf ging Martino
nicht ein.
Hans Kng dagegen kannte diese Mittel. Er empfahl auf einem Kongre der
Bundeszentrale fr politische Bildung am 6. Mrz 2003 sein Weltethos, das
alle Religionen und Kulturen zum Dialog, zu Solidaritt, Gewaltlosigkeit, Toleranz und Gleichberechtigung verpflichte. Er tadelte den frommen Kriegstreiber
Bush, da er dieses Weltethos noch nicht zur Kenntnis genommen habe. Im
Gegensatz zu Martino hielt er die bellum-iustum-Lehre aber nicht fr obsolet.
Sie sei entwickelt worden, um ungerechtfertigte Kriege zu verhindern. An ihr
msse sich die Politik von Bush messen lassen. Als Ergebnis dieser Prfung
verkndete Kng: Bushs Irak-Politik erflle kein einziges der Kriterien der bellum-iustum-Lehre. Deshalb sei ein Krieg gegen Saddam Hussein unmoralisch.8
Auch der Salzburger Weihbischof Andreas Laun, in moralischen und dogmatischen Fragen gewi kein Gefolgsmann Kngs, kam nach seiner Prfung der
Frage, ob ein Irakkrieg ein gerechter Krieg sein knne, erstaunlich schnell zu
dem eindeutigen Ergebnis: Nein, dieser Krieg . . . ist kein gerechter Krieg,
sondern ein ebenso ungerechter wie schlecht berlegter Krieg.9
Differenzierende Anwendungen der bellum-iustum-Lehre auf den Krieg gegen den Terrorismus und auf den Irak-Konflikt waren in Deutschland selten.
Der gerechte Krieg hat einen schlechten Ruf in Deutschland, so begann
Karl Graf Ballestrem sein Pldoyer fr die Erklrung amerikanischer Intellektueller What we're fighting for, um sich dann hinter diese Erklrung zu stelThomas Kater, Moral zur Unzeit, in: Rheinischer Merkur vom 13.2.2003.
KKK 2266.
6 Johannes Paul II., Evangelium Vitae 56.
7 Renato Martino, Interview mit John L. Allen, in: National Catholic Reporter vom
5.2.2003.
8 Hans Kng, Weltpolitik und Weltethos. Zum neuen Paradigma internationaler Beziehungen, in: www.bpb.de, 15.3.2003. Vgl. auch sein Interview mit dem Spiegel
Rechtswidrig und unmoralisch, in: Der Spiegel vom 17.3.2003, S. 61 ff.
9 Andreas Laun, Gott bewahre uns vor diesem Krieg!, in: Kirche heute 2/2003, S. 6;
ders., Amerika gegen Irak: Ein gerechter Krieg?, in: Die Tagespost vom 11.1.2003.
4
5

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213

len und zu zeigen, da der Pazifismus als Handlungsprinzip fr Staaten abzulehnen ist, weil er theoretisch unbefriedigend und im Ergebnis unmoralisch
ist.10
Was ist Gegenstand und Ziel der bellum-iustum-Lehre? Warum ist sie so umstritten und weshalb fhrt sie zu so unterschiedlichen Ergebnissen? Ist sie berhaupt geeignet zur Bewertung militrischer Konflikte, wenn sich die Befrworter militrischer Interventionen ebenso auf sie berufen wie deren Gegner? Die
bellum-iustum-Lehre ist die Frucht einer seit Cicero, mithin seit 2000 Jahren
anhaltenden ethischen Reflexion ber die Frage, wann der Einsatz militrischer
Mittel gerechtfertigt werden kann. Wie jede ethische Reflexion fragt sie nach
den Bedingungen richtigen Handelns, mithin nach den Bedingungen, die erfllt
sein mssen, soll der Einsatz militrischer Mittel legitim sein. Sie ist nicht eine
Strategie zur Rechtfertigung, sondern zur Verhinderung von Kriegen sowie zu
deren Begrenzung, wenn die Verhinderung milungen ist. Thomas von Aquin
errtert sie im 13. Jahrhundert in seiner Summa theologica im Kapitel ber die
Nchstenliebe, zu der um des Gemeinwohles willen die Frsorgepflicht der Regierenden fr die ihnen anvertrauten Menschen gehrt.11
Da sich in der Geschichte auch Kriege finden lassen, in denen diese Lehre
zur Rechtfertigung eines Angriffs mibraucht wurde, ist noch kein Argument
gegen diese Lehre, wie ja auch niemand bis 1989 die Benutzung des Begriffs
Volksdemokratie durch Staaten mit kommunistischer Einparteiherrschaft als
Argument gegen die Demokratie gelten lie. Eine Ethik der Friedenssicherung,
die sich auf die bellum-iustum-Lehre sttzt, schliet den Einsatz militrischer
Mittel zur Sicherung des Friedens beziehungsweise zur Verteidigung existentieller Gter nie aus. Aber sie sieht sich andererseits auch nicht in der Lage, jeden
Waffeneinsatz des Angegriffenen oder Bedrohten zur Abwehr der Aggression
beziehungsweise der Bedrohung zu rechtfertigen. Es kann Situationen geben, in
denen das Unrecht eines Angriffs oder einer Annexion oder eine Bedrohung
hinzunehmen ist, wenn klar voraussehbar ist, da die Abwehr der Bedrohung
oder die Wiederherstellung des status quo einen unverhltnismig hohen Preis
kosten wrde.
Das Recht, sich mit militrischen Mitteln zu verteidigen, hat der Angegriffene also nach der von Augustinus im 5. Jahrhundert systematisierten bellumiustum-Lehre nur unter ganz bestimmten Bedingungen:

10 Karl Graf Ballestrem, Eine Theorie des gerechten Krieges ist unverzichtbar, in:
Politisches Denken: Jahrbuch 2003, a. a. O., S. 249 ff.
11 Thomas von Aquin, Summa theologica, II-II qu 40 a 1. Vgl. auch Josef Rief,
Die bellum-iustum-Theorie historisch, in: Norbert Glatzel/Ernst Josef Nagel (Hrsg.),
Frieden in Sicherheit, Freiburg 1981, S. 95 ff., und John Finnis, The Ethics of War
and Peace in the Catholic Natural Law Tradition, in: Terry Nardin (Hrsg.), The Ethics
of War and Peace. Religious and Secular Perspectives, Princeton 1996, S. 15 ff.

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1. Die Aggression bzw. die Bedrohung mu das Leben oder die existentiellen
Rechte und Gter Unschuldiger gefhrden.
2. Der Einsatz militrischer Mittel mu durch die rechtmige politische Autoritt angeordnet sein.
3. Alle anderen Mglichkeiten, die Aggression bzw. die Bedrohung abzuwehren, mssen ausgeschpft sein.
4. Der Zweck des Einsatzes militrischer Mittel mu sich auf die Abwehr der
Aggression bzw. die Beseitigung der Bedrohung beschrnken, darf sich also
nicht seinerseits in eine Aggression verwandeln.
5. Mit der Mglichkeit eines Erfolgs mu gerechnet werden knnen.
6. Der Grundsatz der Verhltnismigkeit der Mittel mu beachtet werden,
d. h. das Schadensrisiko des Einsatzes militrischer Mittel zur Abwehr der
Aggression bzw. der Bedrohung ist abzuwgen gegen das Schadensrisiko
einer hingenommenen Aggression bzw. einer fortdauernden Bedrohung.
7. Schlielich mu das zur Hegung von Kriegen entwickelte Kriegsvlkerrecht, das ius in bello im Unterschied zum ius ad bellum, beachtet werden,
d. h. a) die Wirkung der eingesetzten Waffen mu kontrollierbar, mithin auf
militrische Zwecke begrenzbar bleiben, und b) die Immunitt der Nichtkombattanten mu gewahrt werden knnen.
Diese sieben Bedingungen lassen sich in drei Fragen zusammenfassen, die
jeder bejahen knnen mu, der den Einsatz militrischer Mittel zur Sicherung
oder Wiedergewinnung des Friedens in Erwgung zieht:
1. Ist der Grund fr den Waffeneinsatz gerecht?
2. Wird ein Ziel verfolgt, das gerecht ist?
3. Sind die Mittel, mit denen dieses Ziel verfolgt wird, angemessen?
Nur wenn alle drei Fragen positiv beantwortet werden knnen, lt sich der
Einsatz militrischer Mittel rechtfertigen.
Der Entwicklung der bellum-iustum-Lehre liegen zwei Voraussetzungen zugrunde, die auch eine Ethik des Irakkrieges in Erinnerung rufen mu und die
in Spannung zueinander stehen: erstens die berzeugung, da jeder Krieg, der
Irakkrieg ebenso wie der Golfkrieg 1991 oder die beiden Weltkriege des 20.
Jahrhunderts, ein bel ist, ein unheilschwangerer Akt der Gewalt, der Zerstrungen, Elend und Tod mit sich bringt, der auf Grund der ihm innewohnenden
Eigendynamik nicht nur militrische, sondern auch politische Risiken birgt und
bei den Menschen Soldaten wie Zivilisten ngste auslst, der mglicherweise auch mehr neue Probleme schafft als alte lst. Zweitens die berzeugung, da die Alternative zum Einsatz militrischer Mittel oft nicht der Friede
ist, sondern Unterdrckung, Erpressung und fortdauernde Bedrohung, die ber-

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215

zeugung, da weder der Pazifismus noch der gewaltlose Widerstand den Frieden sichern kann, da der Pazifismus das, was er verhindern will, gerade erst
provoziert.12
II. Der Irakkrieg und seine Vorgeschichte
Wer den Irak-Konflikt erst im Herbst 2002 mit der Resolution 1441 des Sicherheitsrates der Vereinten Nationen vom 8. November beginnen lt, unterliegt einem folgenreichen Irrtum. Er rckt die bescheidenen, aber immerhin vorhandenen Fortschritte bei den Abrstungsinspektionen der UNO in den Mittelpunkt seiner Betrachtung. Er hlt die viermonatige Ttigkeit von UNMOVIC
und IAEA im Irak fr ebenso unabgeschlossen wie erfolgversprechend und bewertet die am 20. Mrz 2003 beginnende militrische Intervention der Vereinigten Staaten und ihrer Verbndeten als Angriffskrieg.
Der Irak-Konflikt aber begann am 2. August 1990. Damals berfiel die Armee Saddam Husseins das kleine, aber reiche Nachbarland Kuwait. Am 28. August 1990 erklrte der Irak Kuwait zur 19. Provinz seines eigenen Staatsgebietes. Der Sicherheitsrat der Vereinten Nationen stellte noch am 2. August 1990
in seiner Resolution 660 unter Bezugnahme auf Kapitel VII der UN-Charta
(Manahmen bei Bedrohung oder Bruch des Friedens und bei Angriffshandlungen) fest, da die irakische Invasion einen Bruch des internationalen Friedens und der Sicherheit darstellt. Er forderte den sofortigen und bedingungslosen Rckzug des Irak. Der Resolution 660 folgten im Laufe der nchsten vier
Monate elf weitere, in denen unter anderem gegen die Geiselnahme der Auslnder sowie die Irakisierung Kuwaits protestiert und ein Wirtschaftsembargo verhngt wurde. Mit der Resolution 678 vom 29. November 1990 wurden schlielich die Kuwait untersttzenden Mitgliedsstaaten ermchtigt, to use all necessary means to uphold and implement resolution 660 and all subsequent relevant
resolutions and to restore international peace and security in the area, wenn
der Irak bis zum 15. Januar 1991 nicht aus Kuwait abzieht. Aller Welt war klar,
da die Ermchtigung to use all necessary means eine Ermchtigung zum
Einsatz militrischer Mittel bedeutete.
Nachdem die Embargo-Politik ebenso erfolglos geblieben war wie zahlreiche
diplomatische Bemhungen, kam es in der Nacht vom 16. auf den 17. Januar
1991 zum Einsatz der alliierten Luftwaffe und am 24. Februar zur Landoffensive gegen die irakischen Truppen in Kuwait und ihre Nachschubbasen im sdlichen Irak. Die militrische Intervention zwang den Irak innerhalb von vier
Wochen zur Kapitulation und zur bedingungslosen Annahme aller Resolutionen
des Sicherheitsrates. Die Truppen Saddam Husseins verlieen plndernd, mor12 Manfred Spieker, Die Verteidigung des Friedens gegen den Pazifismus, in: Aus
Politik und Zeitgeschichte 17/83 vom 30.4.1983, S. 17 ff.

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dend und brandschatzend Kuwait. Am 28. Februar wurden die Kmpfe eingestellt. Am 3. Mrz wurde ein Waffenstillstand unterzeichnet, und am 3. April
beschlo der Sicherheitsrat in seiner Resolution 687 ein umfangreiches Programm zur Abrstung und Kontrolle des Irak. Er forderte die Zerstrung beziehungsweise Unschdlichmachung der chemischen und biologischen Waffen, der
entsprechenden Produktionsanlagen, der Raketen mit einer Reichweite ber 150
Kilometer, die Beendigung des Programms zur Entwicklung von Nuklearwaffen, die Einstellung jeglicher Untersttzung des internationalen Terrorismus, die
Freilassung aller Gefangenen und die Rckgabe kuwaitischen Besitzes. Er bekrftigte seine Absicht, weitere Schritte zur Durchsetzung dieser Resolution und
zur Gewhrleistung von Frieden und Sicherheit in der Region zu beschlieen,
wenn solche notwendig werden sollten. Dieser Waffenstillstand war noch kein
Friedensschlu. Damit war auch das Mandat des Sicherheitsrates zur Anwendung militrischer Mittel noch nicht erloschen. Militrisch war der Irakkrieg
zwar beendet, aber der Friedensschlu und damit das Ende des UN-Mandats
hingen von der Erfllung der in der Waffenstillstandsresolution 687 vereinbarten beziehungsweise diktierten Bedingungen ab.13
Im Laufe der 90er Jahre geriet der durch den Krieg und das Embargo geschwchte Irak an den Rand des westlichen Interesses, obgleich es wiederholt
Hinweise auf die Gefahren gab, die vom Regime Saddam Husseins ausgingen.14 Zweimal, 1993 und 1998, flogen die Alliierten Luftangriffe gegen den
Irak, weil er die Bedingungen des Waffenstillstandes verletzt hatte. Niemand
hielt damals eine eigene Ermchtigung durch den Sicherheitsrat fr notwendig.
Der Generalsekretr der UNO Boutros Ghali erklrte vielmehr am 14. Januar
1993, er knne besttigen, da diese Luftangriffe im Einklang mit der Resolution 687 des Sicherheitsrates und der Charta der Vereinten Nationen stehen.
Aber das Regime Saddam Husseins, der sich wider alle westlichen Erwartungen
auch nach dem verlorenen Krieg an der Macht halten konnte, stellte die Kooperation mit den Inspektoren der UNO ein. Der Irak betrachtete sie als Spione der
USA. Im Dezember 1998 zwang Saddam Hussein sie, den Irak zu verlassen.
Dabei erklrte der Leiter der UN-Sonderkommission fr die Vernichtung der
Massenvernichtungswaffen im Irak (UNSCOM), Richard Butler, die Zerstrung
des Raketen- und Chemiewaffenprogramms habe kurz vor dem Abschlu gestanden, die Vernichtung der biologischen Waffen sei dagegen noch nicht erfolgt. Drei Jahre blieb der Rauswurf folgenlos.
13 Dieter Blumenwitz, Die vlkerrechtlichen Aspekte des Irak-Konflikts, in: Zeitschrift fr Politik, 50. Jg. (2003), S. 304, meint dagegen, das UN-Mandat zur militrischen Intervention sei mit der Wiederherstellung der Souvernitt und der Autoritt
der legitimen kuwaitischen Regierung beendet gewesen, weshalb auch die erneute militrische Intervention 2003 als vlkerrechtswidrig bewertet werden msse.
14 Vgl. Kenneth M. Pollack, The threatening storm. The case for invading Iraq,
New York 2002.

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War der Irakkrieg ein bellum iustum?

217

Da sich das Interesse der USA und des Sicherheitsrates im Laufe des Jahres
2002 wieder auf den Irak konzentrierte, ist nicht zuletzt auf den Regierungswechsel in den USA von Clinton zu Bush zurckzufhren. Die Terroranschlge
vom 11. September 2001 rckten den Irak noch mehr in das Zentrum amerikanischer Interessen. Nicht da das Regime Saddam Husseins beschuldigt wurde,
die Anschlge vom 11. September begangen oder initiiert zu haben, aber die
Tatsache, da es die in der Resolution 687 geforderte kontrollierte Abrstung
nicht durchgefhrt und den Inspektoren der UNO den bedingungslosen, unbeschrnkten Zutritt verweigert hatte, entzog dem am 3. Mrz 1991 unterzeichneten
Waffenstillstand den Boden. Dies stellte der Sicherheitsrat denn auch in seiner
Resolution 1441 am 8. November 2002 fest: Der Irak habe seine Verpflichtungen aus Resolution 687 sowie weiteren Resolutionen nicht erfllt. Erflle er sie
nicht innerhalb einer bestimmten letzten Frist von wenigen Wochen, msse er
mit serious consequences rechnen. Da serious consequences bedeutete, militrische Mittel einzusetzen, war allen Beteiligten ebenso klar wie bei jener
Formulierung in der Resolution 678 am 29. November 1990, to use all necessary means. Der Sicherheitsratsbeschlu allein htte Saddam Hussein wohl
kaum dazu bewogen, die Inspekteure der Vereinten Nationen im November
2002 wieder in den Irak einreisen zu lassen. Aber der Aufmarsch der amerikanischen und britischen Truppen an seinen Grenzen im Sommer und Herbst 2002
zeigte ihm den Ernst der Lage. Die Inspekteure bemhten sich rund drei Monate um neue Erkenntnisse, und ihr Leiter Hans Blix berichtete dem Sicherheitsrat einerseits von Fortschritten und andererseits von den Mngeln der Kooperationsbereitschaft des Regimes. Hauptmangel war und blieb bis zuletzt, da
der Irak nicht bereit war, von sich aus den Nachweis ber die Vernichtung aller
Massenvernichtungswaffen vorzulegen, zu dem er durch die Resolution 687
verpflichtet war.
Der erneute Einsatz militrischer Mittel am 20. Mrz 2003 kann deshalb weder als Angriffskrieg noch als Prventivkrieg bewertet werden.15 Vor dem Hintergrund der 21 Resolutionen des Sicherheitsrates der UNO zwischen dem
2. August 1990 und dem 8. November 2002 war er eine Suspendierung des Waffenstillstandes vom 3. Mrz 1991, mithin eine Fortsetzung des damals unterbro15 Die Deutsche Bischofskonferenz meinte in einer Erklrung vom 20.1.2003, den
bevorstehenden Krieg gegen Saddam Hussein als Prventivkrieg bewerten zu mssen.
Vgl. die Erklrung des Stndigen Rates Im Widerspruch zum Vlkerrecht, in: Die
Tagespost vom 23.1.2003. Vgl. auch Thomas Hoppe, Gewaltprvention statt Prventivkriege. Die Lehren des Irakkriegs und das Bischofswort zum Gerechten Frieden,
in: Herder-Korrespondenz, 57. Jg. (2003), S. 227 ff. Die amerikanischen Bischfe neigen in ihrem Statement on Iraq vom 13.11.2002 ebenfalls zu dieser Auffassung, in:
www.nccbuscc.org/bishops/iraq. Da es sich weder um einen Angriffs- noch um einen
Prventivkrieg handelt, unterstreichen dagegen Lothar Roos, Vlkerrecht durchsetzen,
in: Rheinischer Merkur vom 13.2.2003, und G. Weigel, The Just War Case for the
War, in: America, vol. 188, Nr. 11 vom 31.3.2003, S. 8.

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chenen Krieges gegen Saddam Hussein. Wre die amerikanische Regierung bei
dieser Begrndung der militrischen Intervention im Irak geblieben, statt immer
wieder neue Grnde zu nennen oder die Akzente der Begrndung zu verschieben, htte sie den Sturm der weltweiten Opposition gegen die Intervention zwar
auch nicht beseitigen, aber vermutlich doch mildern knnen. Die Sprunghaftigkeit der Begrndung dieser Intervention beseitigt aber nicht die Mglichkeit
ihrer vlkerrechtlichen Legitimierung.
Dennoch bleiben kritische Fragen. Die Logik der Resolutionen des Sicherheitsrates kann eine Bewertung des Krieges anhand der sieben Kriterien der
bellum-iustum-Lehre nicht ersetzen. War der Grund fr die Wiederaufnahme
militrischer Handlungen sittlich zu rechtfertigen? Waren die Vereinigten Staaten zu einer militrischen Intervention ohne erneutes Mandat des Sicherheitsrates berechtigt? Waren beziehungsweise sind die Ziele des Krieges legitim und
die Mittel angemessen?
III. Der Grund, die Ziele und die Mittel des Krieges
gegen Saddam Hussein
Um die Frage nach dem gerechten Grund fr die Wiederaufnahme militrischer Handlungen zu beantworten, sind die ersten drei Kriterien der bellumiustum-Lehre auf den Krieg gegen Saddam Hussein anzuwenden. Wie stand es
um die Bedrohung Unschuldiger durch Saddam Hussein, um die Rechtmigkeit der Entscheidung zum Einsatz militrischer Mittel und um die Ausschpfung aller friedlichen Mittel zur Abwehr der Bedrohung?
1. Die Aggression bzw. die Bedrohung mu das Leben
oder existentielle Rechte und Gter Unschuldiger gefhrden

Die Frage, ob das Regime Saddam Husseins eine Gefahr fr das Leben Unschuldiger darstellte, war Anfang 2003 schwieriger zu beantworten als 1991.
Wie skrupellos dieses Regime damals mit dem Leben Unschuldiger umging,
zeigten seine Kriege gegen den Iran, gegen Kuwait und Israel, sein Kampf gegen Kurden, Schiiten und christliche Assyrer im eigenen Staatsgebiet und nicht
zuletzt sein wiederholter Einsatz chemischer Waffen, dem allein in Halabdscha
im Mrz 1988 cirka 5.000 Kurden zum Opfer fielen. Niemand hatte genaue
Zahlen, aber es waren Hunderttausende, wenn nicht zwei Millionen, denen die
Kriege und Gewalttaten Saddam Husseins das Leben gekostet haben. Seine
Feindschaft gegen die USA, Israel und den Westen ist vielfach dokumentiert
nicht zuletzt am 11. September 2001, als er die Terroranschlge auf das World
Trade Center und das Pentagon freudig begrte. Aber welche Gefahr ging vom
Regime Saddam Husseins im Jahr 2002 aus? Spricht Hans Kng nicht fr viele,

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War der Irakkrieg ein bellum iustum?

219

wenn er feststellt, da eine blo vermutete und im Entstehen begriffene Bedrohung . . . kein Kriegsgrund ist?16
Saddam Husseins Regime war nicht eine blo vermutete oder im Entstehen
begriffene Bedrohung. Eine derartige Einschtzung war eine Verharmlosung eines Diktators, der sich selbst als neuer Nebukadnezar und als Saladin II. huldigen lie, dessen Aggressionen gegen die eigene Bevlkerung, den Iran und Kuwait Hunderttausenden das Leben kostete und der auch nach der Niederlage im
Golfkrieg 1991 die Programme, die Laboratorien und die Wissenschaftler zur
Entwicklung von Massenvernichtungswaffen besa. Dies war nicht nur die Erkenntnis aller westlichen Geheimdienste,17 sondern auch der Ausgangspunkt der
Resolution 1441 des Sicherheitsrates der Vereinten Nationen vom 8. November
2002.18 Die Tatsache, da nach der Militrintervention 2003 keine Massenvernichtungswaffen gefunden wurden, ist kein Beweis, da es sie nicht gab.
Im brigen ist, was die Beweislast betrifft, festzuhalten, da nach der Resolution 687 nicht die UN-Inspektoren zu beweisen hatten, da Saddam Hussein
Massenvernichtungswaffen besa, sondern Saddam Hussein hatte zu beweisen,
da er seine Massenvernichtungswaffen vernichtet und seine Programme zur
Entwicklung von Nuklearwaffen eingestellt hatte. Die Bereitschaft zur Kooperation mit der UNO, die diese Beweislastverteilung zur Folge htte haben mssen,
hat Saddam Hussein nie gezeigt. Daran haben auch die Waffeninspektoren nie
einen Zweifel gelassen.
Wenn dem aus der Perspektive der USA entgegengehalten wird, die Terroranschlge vom 11. September 2001 htten bewiesen, da es sich beim Terrorismus nicht blo um eine vermutete, sondern um eine sehr reale Bedrohung
handle, der an jenem Tag ber 3.100 Unschuldige zum Opfer gefallen sind,
werden die Kritiker der militrischen Intervention entgegnen, da zwar der Terrorismus fr die USA eine Bedrohung sein mag, aber nicht der Irak. Wie aber
ist der Bedrohung des Terrorismus zu begegnen, und hat der Irak nichts mit
ihm zu tun? Der Terrorismus ist fr die Politik, das Vlkerrecht und die bellum-iustum-Lehre eine neue Herausforderung. Er ist nicht eine neue Form organisierter Kriminalitt, sondern eine offensive politisch-militrische Strategie, die
weniger auf die physischen Folgen der Gewaltanwendung als vielmehr auf die
davon ausgehenden psychischen Effekte abzielt.19 Er signalisiert dem Angegrif16 Hans Kng, Weltpolitik und Weltethos, a. a. O., S. 11; Spiegel-Interview, a. a. O.,
S. 61.
17 Vgl. K. M. Pollack, a. a. O., S. 148 ff.
18 So heit es in dieser Resolution: The Security Council . . . recognizing the threat
Iraq's non-compliance with Council resolutions and proliferation of weapons of mass
destruction and long-range missiles poses to international peace and security . . .
19 Herfried Mnkler, ber den Krieg, Weilerswist 2002, S. 257. Eine profunde Analyse des Terrorismus aus staatsrechtlicher Sicht findet sich auch bei Josef Isensee, Der

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fenen, da er auch bei grter konomischer, technologischer und militrischer


berlegenheit jederzeit und an jedem Ort verwundbar ist.
Terroristische Netzwerke operieren global und sie knnen dies nur, wenn sie
Staaten beziehungsweise Regierungen hinter sich wissen, die sie untersttzen
oder wenigstens tolerieren. Die Untersttzung des Terror-Netzwerkes von Al
Kaida durch das afghanische Taliban-Regime war offenkundig. Deshalb war
der Krieg gegen dieses Regime legitim. Er war auch vlkerrechtlich vertretbar.
Der Sicherheitsrat der Vereinten Nationen hat die Terroranschlge in seiner Resolution vom 12. September 2001 ausdrcklich als eine Bedrohung des internationalen Friedens und der Sicherheit eingestuft. Der Terrorismus ist insofern zu
einer Gefahr geworden, die dem Angriff mit militrischen Streitkrften eines
Staates vergleichbar ist.20 Der Krieg gegen Saddam Hussein aber konnte sich
nicht auf eine direkte Verbindung seines Regimes zum Terrornetzwerk Osama
bin Ladens sttzen. Dennoch war es keine bloe Behauptung der Regierung
Bush, da auch das Regime von Saddam Hussein Verbindungen zum Terrorismus nicht zuletzt der Palstinenser hatte. So beklagte der Sicherheitsrat der
Vereinten Nationen schon am 3. April 1991 in seiner Resolution 687, da der
Irak sich in seiner Kriegsfhrung terroristischer Mittel bediene. In seiner Resolution 1441 hat der Sicherheitsrat erneut festgestellt, da der Irak seine Verpflichtung aus Resolution 687, jegliche Verbindung zum Terrorismus einzustellen, nicht erfllt hat. Als der amerikanische Auenminister Powell im Februar
2003 diese Verbindungen sowie die verbotenen Waffenprogramme nachzuweisen suchte und die anderen Mitgliedsstaaten, vor allem Frankreich, Deutschland
und Ruland, Zweifel auf Zweifel huften, schienen sie die Feststellungen des
Sicherheitsrates in den Resolutionen 687 und 1441 verdrngt zu haben.
Worin besteht die Herausforderung des Terrorismus fr die Politik, die Militrstrategie und die bellum-iustum-Lehre? Sie besteht in einer Vernderung der
Kampfkonstellation. Der Angreifer versucht, sich unsichtbar und damit unangreifbar zu machen. Er bedarf aber der heimlichen Untersttzung bestimmter
Staaten oder staatenhnlicher Gebilde wie des palstinensischen Autonomiegebietes, in denen seine Operationsbasen und Terrorzellen unangetastet bleiben.
Der Krieg wandelt sich so von einem symmetrischen zu einem asymmetrischen Krieg.21 Im symmetrischen Krieg stehen sich Staaten oder Koalitionen von Staaten gegenber. Im asymmetrischen Krieg steht dem Opfer terroristischer Attacken kein klar identifizierbarer Angreifer, der Uniform trgt,
gegenber, sondern ein global oder regional operierendes Netzwerk von TerroVerfassungsstaat als Friedensgarant, in: Die Politische Meinung, 49. Jg. (2004), Heft
413, S. 85 ff.
20 Jochen A. Frowein, Terroristische Gewalttaten und Vlkerrecht, in: FAZ vom
15.9.2001.
21 Michael Novak, Asymmetrical Warfare and Just War. A moral obligation, in:
www.nationalreview.com vom 10.2.2003. Vgl. auch H. Mnkler, a. a. O., S. 252 ff.

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War der Irakkrieg ein bellum iustum?

221

risten, die zivile Kleidung tragen, Unschuldige ermorden und Zivilflugzeuge in


Massenvernichtungswaffen verwandeln. In dieser Situation mu der Verteidiger
nicht nur sein Waffenarsenal und seine Militrstrategie berprfen, er wird auch
in jedem den Terrorismus untersttzenden Staat selbst einen Angreifer sehen.
Fr die bellum-iustum-Lehre bedeutet dies, da ein Grund fr den legitimen
Einsatz militrischer Mittel, der in den 50er Jahren aufgrund der Nuklearwaffen
aus den Grnden fr einen legitimen Waffeneinsatz herausgenommen worden
war, nmlich die Sanktionierung von Regimen, die den Frieden bedrohen, wieder ins Blickfeld rckt und Legitimitt beansprucht.22 Wenn es outlaw- oder
rogue-states, sog. Schurkenstaaten gibt, die durch ihre mehr oder weniger
heimliche Untersttzung des Terrorismus einen unerklrten Krieg gegen die
USA oder den Westen fhren, haben die Angegriffenen, und das heit primr
ihre Regierungen, nicht nur das Recht, sondern die Pflicht, ihre Brger gegen
eine derartige tdliche Gefahr zu schtzen. Die Frage nach einem gerechten
Grund fr einen legitimen Einsatz militrischer Mittel mu deshalb in Erwgung ziehen, den Begriff Bestrafung des Bsen (punishment for evil) neu zu
bedenken und in die legitimen Kriegsgrnde einzubeziehen. Schon die humanitren Interventionen der 90er Jahre in Bosnien-Herzegowina, im Kosovo und in
Somalia haben die gerechten Grnde fr den Einsatz militrischer Mittel ber
die Verteidigung gegen einen unmittelbaren Angriff hinaus ausgeweitet.23 Die
Frage, ob das Regime Saddam Husseins eine unmittelbare Gefhrdung fr das
Leben Unschuldiger auerhalb der Grenzen des Iraks darstellt, kann mithin bejaht werden, wenn sowohl der neue Charakter terroristischer Bedrohungen und
asymmetrischer Kriege als auch die Geschichte der Resolutionen des Sicherheitsrates gewrdigt werden. Aber sofort stellt sich die Frage, ob die Regierung
Bush allein befugt war, diese Bedrohung festzustellen, oder ob dies nicht in die
Kompetenz des Sicherheitsrates der Vereinten Nationen fiel.
2. Der Einsatz militrischer Mittel mu durch die rechtmige
politische Autoritt angeordnet sein

Der Sicherheitsrat ist als vlkerrechtliches Organ kollektiver Sicherheit nach


Kapitel V bis VII der UNO-Charta ohne Zweifel die privilegierte Autoritt zur
Anordnung des Einsatzes militrischer Mittel in einem Konflikt. Seine Resolution 678 vom 29. November 1990, die ausdrcklich auf Kapitel VII der Charta
22 George Weigel, Moral Clarity in a Time of War. The Second Annual William E.
Simon Lecture, in: www.eppc.org. Vgl. auch Robert Kennedy, War and the Bishops,
in: Star Tribune vom 2.4.2003, und Wolfgang Schuble, Lektionen aus der Krise, in:
KAS-Auslandsinformationen 4/03, S. 14.
23 Vgl. M. Spieker, Zur Aktualitt der Lehre vom gerechten Krieg. Von nuklearer
Abschreckung zur humanitren Intervention, in: Die Neue Ordnung, 54. Jg. (2000),
S. 4 ff. Vgl. auch die Botschaft Papst Johannes Pauls II. zum Weltfriedenstag am
1.1.2000, Ziffer 11.

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222

Manfred Spieker

Bezug nahm, war eine solche Anordnung, bei deren Umsetzung er dann allerdings nicht auf eigene Streitkrfte zurckgreifen kann. Er bleibt auf die Armeen
der Mitgliedsstaaten angewiesen, die zur Ausfhrung solcher Beschlsse bereit
sind. In der Regel sind dies die USA, die dann mehr oder weniger breite Koalitionen anfhren. Die Ermchtigung zum Einsatz militrischer Mittel in Resolution 678 galt allen Mitgliedsstaaten, die mit der Regierung Kuwaits zusammenarbeiten. Die Resolution 1441 enthielt zwar keine unmittelbare Anordnung
zum Einsatz militrischer Mittel, aber sie drohte dem Irak mit ernsthaften
Konsequenzen im Falle der fortgesetzten Weigerung, die Verpflichtungen aus
Resolution 687 zu erfllen. Sie erinnerte ausdrcklich an das Mandat zum Waffeneinsatz in Resolution 678. Ob deshalb nach Ablauf der dem Irak gesetzten
Fristen eine weitere Resolution des Sicherheitsrates berhaupt notwendig gewesen wre, um den Einsatz militrischer Mittel anzuordnen, ist umstritten. China,
Ruland und Frankreich hielten eine solche Resolution fr notwendig, Grobritannien wnschte sie mehr aus politischen als aus vlkerrechtlichen Grnden,
obgleich der britische Generalstaatsanwalt Lord Goldsmith sie in seiner Antwort auf eine parlamentarische Anfrage nicht fr notwendig hielt24, und die
USA hielten sie ebenfalls nicht fr notwendig.25 Eine neue Resolution scheiterte schlielich an der Uneinigkeit des Sicherheitsrates. Da mit den serious
consequences im Falle der Nichterfllung der Verpflichtungen aus Resolution
687 aber nicht eine Verdoppelung oder Verdreifachung der Abrstungsinspektionen, sondern nur eine militrische Intervention gemeint sein konnte, steht auer
Frage.
Bei der Wiederaufnahme der militrischen Intervention am 20. Mrz 2003
war deshalb ein Rckgriff auf Art. 51 der UNO-Charta, der jedem Mitgliedsstaat das naturgegebene Recht zur individuellen oder kollektiven Selbstverteidigung zugesteht, bis der Sicherheitsrat die zur Wahrung des Weltfriedens
und der internationalen Sicherheit erforderlichen Manahmen getroffen hat,
gar nicht mehr notwendig. Da einzelnen Staaten oder Staatenbndnissen ein
solches Recht nicht genommen werden kann, wenn der Sicherheitsrat blockiert
oder desinteressiert ist, wie er das die meiste Zeit seiner bald 60jhrigen Geschichte war, findet zwar nicht ungeteilte Zustimmung. Vor allem die Evangelische Kirche in Deutschland reserviert die Entscheidungskompetenz immer wie24 Statement by the Attorney General Lord Goldsmith, in answer to a parliamentary
question vom 18.3.2003, in: www.fco.gov.uk.
25 Fr Bruno Simma, Prventivschlge brechen das Vlkerrecht, Interview mit
der Sddeutschen Zeitung vom 1./2.2.2003, war die Resolution 1441 ein typischer
Formelkompromi, der beide Schlufolgerungen zulie, die Frankreichs, Chinas und
Rulands, die ein eigenes Mandat zum Krieg verlangten, und die der USA, die dieses Mandat aus der Resolution 1441 ableiteten. Keinen Auslegungsspielraum sieht dagegen Dietrich Murswiek, Die amerikanische Prventivkriegsstrategie und das Vlkerrecht, in: Neue Juristische Wochenschrift 2003, S. 1014 ff. in der Resolution 1441. Sie
enthalte in keinem Fall eine Ermchtigung zum Krieg.

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War der Irakkrieg ein bellum iustum?

223

der der UNO.26 Auch die Deutsche Bischofskonferenz hat in ihrer Erklrung
zum Irak-Konflikt vom 13. Mrz 2003 jede militrische Gewaltanwendung,
die ohne Mandat des Sicherheitsrates . . . erfolgte, als eine Abkehr vom Vlkerrecht bezeichnet.27 Dieses Mandat lag mit der in Resolution 1441 besttigten Resolution 678 jedoch vor.
In vielen Konfliktfllen wrde ein Monopol des Sicherheitsrates dazu zwingen, dem Unheil zuzusehen. Die katholische Kirche bringt deshalb zwar in vielen Dokumenten und ppstlichen Ansprachen ihre Wertschtzung fr die Vereinten Nationen zum Ausdruck, reserviert die Kompetenz zur Entscheidung
ber den Einsatz militrischer Mittel aber nicht dem Sicherheitsrat.28 Die Kompetenz zu entscheiden, ob alle Kriterien der bellum-iustum-Lehre erfllt sind,
kommt vielmehr dem klugen Ermessen derer zu, die mit der Wahrung des Gemeinwohls betraut sind.29 Die Wahrung des Gemeinwohls aber ist in erster
Linie die Pflicht der Regierung. Im Falle humanitrer Interventionen, die meist
ohne UNO-Beschlsse realisiert werden, haben sie nicht nur das Recht, sondern
die Pflicht, einzugreifen, wenn die Institutionen kollektiver Sicherheit blockiert
sind. Wenn einmal alle von diplomatischen Verhandlungen gebotenen Mglichkeiten, alle durch bereinknfte und internationale Organisationen vorgesehenen Prozesse erschpft sind und trotzdem ganze Volksgruppen dabei sind, den
Schlgen eines ungerechten Angreifers zu erliegen, erklrte Kardinal Sodano
in Vertretung des Papstes beim Neujahrsempfang fr das beim Hl. Stuhl akkreditierte Diplomatische Korps 1993, haben die Staaten kein Recht mehr auf
Gleichgltigkeit. Es scheint vielmehr, da ihre Pflicht in der Entwaffnung dieses Angreifers besteht, nachdem alle brigen Mittel sich als unwirksam erwiesen haben. Die Grundstze der Souvernitt der Staaten und der Nichteinmischung in ihre inneren Angelegenheiten die ihren vollen Wert behalten drfen keine Schutzwand bilden, hinter der man foltern und morden darf.30
26 Vgl. Rat der EKD, Orientierungspunkte fr Friedensethik und Friedenspolitik
vom 6.1.1994, Hannover 1994, S. 28. Auch D. Murswiek, a. a. O., S. 1017, spricht
vom Monopol des Sicherheitsrates, Zwangsmanahmen . . . zu treffen. Die EKD
scheint allerdings im gleichen Dokument dann doch wieder an einem solchen Monopol zu zweifeln, da der tatschliche Zustand der UNO eine Orientierung an den
Grundstzen und Regelungen der Charta nicht gewhrleiste (a. a. O., S. 29).
27 Erklrung der Deutschen Bischofskonferenz zum Irak-Konflikt vom 13.3.2003,
in: www.dbk.de/presse.
28 Wer behauptet, Johannes Paul II. habe sich fr ein Gewaltmonopol der Vereinten
Nationen ausgesprochen (wie z. B. Martin Maier, chtung des Krieges, in: Stimmen
der Zeit, 128. Jg. (2003), S. 218), bleibt dafr jeden Beleg schuldig. Wohl lassen sich
bischfliche uerungen finden, die ein derartiges Monopol behaupten, so z. B. JeanLouis Tauran, Ein Angriffskrieg wre ein Verbrechen gegen den Frieden, in: 30 Tage
3/2003, S. 11.
29 KKK 2309. Vgl. dazu auch G. Weigel, a. a. O., S. 4, und ders., The Just War
Case for the War, a. a. O., S. 7 ff.; M. Novak, a. a. O., S. 1; Rudolf Pesch, Der Krieg
ist nicht einfach Schicksal, in: Heute in Kirche und Welt, 3. Jg. (2003), S. 1.

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224

Manfred Spieker
3. Alle anderen Mglichkeiten, die Aggression
bzw. die Bedrohung abzuwehren, mssen ausgeschpft sein

Die Beantwortung der Frage, ob alles getan wurde, um die Bedrohung auf
friedlichem Weg abzuwehren, wird immer strittig bleiben. Wer kann je sagen,
er habe alles getan? Am ehesten noch Papst Johannes Paul II., der in den Monaten vor der Intervention mit allen Konfliktparteien sprach und alle aufforderte, eine friedliche Lsung zu finden auch den Irak. Die berzeugung, auf
den friedlichen Ebenen der Diplomatie, der Inspektionen, der Embargo-Politik
und der Abschreckung sei alles getan worden, um Frieden und Sicherheit am
Golf wiederherzustellen, ist gewi schwer zu belegen. Noch schwerer aber ist
nachzuweisen, da nicht alles getan wurde. berzeugende Argumente, da eine
Verlngerung der Inspektionen um drei oder vier Monate das Problem gelst
htte, sind nicht bekannt geworden. Schon vor der Militrintervention 1991 war
der damalige deutsche Auenminister Hans-Dietrich Genscher der Meinung, nie
zuvor seien einem Aggressor so viele Gelegenheiten zum Einlenken gegeben
worden wie Saddam Hussein. Dies gilt erst recht 2003. Schlielich hatte er seit
der Resolution 687 zwlf Jahre Zeit, seine Abrstungsverpflichtungen zu erfllen.
Wer den Irak-Konflikt erst mit der Resolution 1441 beginnen lt, wird die
Frage, ob alle friedlichen Mittel ausgeschpft wurden, verneinen. Er wird auf
die vom UNMOVIC-Chef Blix mehrfach besttigten Fortschritte in der Kooperationsbereitschaft des Irak verweisen und darauf, da die Inspekteure selbst
erklrten, sie bentigten noch einige Monate, um die Inspektionen abzuschlieen. Das Pldoyer fr verlngerte Inspektionen bersieht jedoch zum einen die
13jhrige Geschichte des Irak-Konflikts und zum anderen die Tatsache, da
Saddam Hussein die Inspektoren im November 2002 nur deshalb wieder ihre
Arbeit aufnehmen lie, weil die USA und Grobritannien bereits rund 100.000
Soldaten am Golf stationiert hatten. Saddam Husseins Kooperationsbereitschaft
war nicht die Folge eines politischen Kurswechsels im Irak, sondern des Drukkes, den die USA mit ihren Truppenverlegungen auf ihn ausbten. Da diese
Truppenverlegungen auch whrend der Inspektionen fortgesetzt wurden, kam es
mehrfach zu kleinen Fortschritten bei der Kooperation, die Hans Blix aber nicht
davon abhalten konnten, vor dem Sicherheitsrat wiederholt ber die mangelhafte Kooperationsbereitschaft des Iraks zu klagen. Inspektionen, die nur unter
dem Druck einer Armee von mehreren 100.000 Soldaten durchgefhrt werden
knnen, sind gewi nicht mehr jene Inspektionen, die der Sicherheitsrat in seinen Resolutionen 687 und 1284 dem Irak auferlegt hatte. Saddam Hussein lie
30 Angelo Kardinal Sodano, Ansprache beim Neujahrsempfang fr das Diplomatische Korps am 16.1.1993, Nr. 13, in: Osservatore Romano (deutschsprachige Wochenausgabe) vom 29.1.1993, S. 9. Vgl. auch Giuseppe Mattai/Bruno Marra, Dalla guerra
all' ingerenza umanitaria, Turin 1994, S. 123 ff.

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War der Irakkrieg ein bellum iustum?

225

sich durch diese Inspektionen auch nicht davon abhalten, neue Aufrstungsplne zu verfolgen und mit Nordkorea ber die Lieferung von waffenstillstandswidrigen Mittelstreckenraketen zu verhandeln.31
Die Entwicklung des Irak-Konflikts seit dem Waffenstillstand 1991 ist eine
fast unendliche Geschichte von diplomatischen Verhandlungen in der UNO, von
Resolutionen im Sicherheitsrat, von Luftwaffeneinstzen der Alliierten im Irak
wegen Verletzung der Verpflichtungen aus dem Waffenstillstandsvertrag und
von Inspektionen. Ein letztes Ultimatum von Prsident Bush zur Vermeidung
eines Krieges verlangte am 17. Mrz 2003 von Saddam Hussein, da er mit
seinen beiden bel beleumdeten Shnen den Irak innerhalb von zwei Tagen zu
verlassen habe. Das Ultimatum wurde zurckgewiesen. In Anbetracht dieser
Fakten fllt es schwer, von einem voreiligen Krieg zu sprechen. Das Kriterium,
da ein Einsatz militrischer Waffen zwecks Abwehr einer Bedrohung nur ultima ratio sein drfe, wurde deshalb nicht verletzt.
Aber wie steht es mit den Zielen dieses Krieges? Entsprechen sie dem Kriterium der rechten Absicht, und gibt es Chancen, diese Ziele, wenn sie denn sittlich vertretbar sind, zu erreichen? Um diese Frage zu beantworten, sind die mit
der militrischen Intervention verbundenen Ziele an den Kriterien vier und fnf
der bellum-iustum-Lehre zu messen.
4. Der Zweck des Einsatzes militrischer Mittel mu sich auf die Abwehr
der Aggression bzw. die Beseitigung der Bedrohung beschrnken,
darf sich also nicht seinerseits in eine Aggression verwandeln

Im Golfkrieg 1991 galt die Befreiung Kuwaits als primres Ziel. Die Alliierten vertrieben die Armee Saddam Husseins aus Kuwait und schlossen nach
sechswchigem Krieg am 3. Mrz einen Waffenstillstand, der dem Irak mit den
Abrstungsverpflichtungen, den Inspektionen und Flugverbotszonen zwar besondere Auflagen machte, das Regime von Saddam Hussein aber nicht antastete. Ein Regimewechsel galt damals als politisch erwnschtes, aber als vlkerrechtlich nicht legitimes Kriegsziel. Die Verteidigung der Souvernitt Kuwaits
sollte sich nicht in eine Aggression gegen den Irak verwandeln. So unterlieen
es die alliierten Streitkrfte, Bagdad zu besetzen und ein Besatzungsregime zu
errichten. Die Hoffnung, da der Diktator seine Vertreibung aus Kuwait und die
Zerstrung seines offensiven Rstungspotentials nicht lange berleben wrde,
erfllte sich nicht, und schon im Konflikt um die Inspektionen 1998, in dem
sich Saddam Hussein durchsetzte, erwies sich die Zurckhaltung der Alliierten
1991 als Fehler. Die Beseitigung des irakischen Aggressionspotentials und der
vom Regime Saddam Husseins ausgehenden Bedrohung lie sich ohne Regimewechsel nicht erreichen.
31

In: FAZ vom 3.11.2003, Neue Belege fr Saddams Waffenplne.

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226

Manfred Spieker

Im Mrz 2003 erklrte der amerikanische Verteidigungsminister Donald


Rumsfeld, die Kriegsziele der Vereinigten Staaten seien, das amerikanische
Volk zu verteidigen, die Massenvernichtungswaffen des Iraks zu vernichten und
das irakische Volk zu befreien. Die Militroperationen seien deshalb auf mehrere Teilziele ausgerichtet, darunter zunchst darauf, dem Regime von Saddam
Hussein ein Ende zu setzen.32
Gegen dieses Ziel erhob sich die Kritik. Es sei durch die Beschlsse des
Sicherheitsrates nicht gedeckt. Diese Beschlsse zielten lediglich auf die Beseitigung der Massenvernichtungswaffen. Diese Kritik ist jedoch nicht begrndet.
Da der Nachweis der Beseitigung der Massenvernichtungswaffen auch zwlf
Jahre nach dem Waffenstillstand noch nicht erbracht war, kann die Feststellung,
da der Regimewechsel eine Voraussetzung fr deren Beseitigung ist, kaum als
Versto gegen die Resolution 687 bezeichnet werden, zumal der Sicherheitsrat
selbst in dieser Resolution und auch schon in Resolution 678 erklrt hatte, da
es ihm nicht nur um Abrstung, sondern auch um die Gewhrleistung von Frieden und Sicherheit in der Region gehe. Die Vereinten Nationen seien entschlossen, alles zu unternehmen, to secure peace and security in the region.33 Das
Ziel des Krieges gegen Saddam Hussein im Frhjahr 2003, die Befreiung des
Irak durch einen Regimewechsel, kann deshalb als gerechtes Ziel bezeichnet
werden, das in der Logik aller Resolutionen des Sicherheitsrates liegt.
Ob dieses Ziel schon bedeutet, eine stabile demokratische Ordnung im Irak
zu etablieren, darf mit Fug und Recht bezweifelt werden. Wenn die Regierung
Bush ihr Kriegsziel derart umschreibt oder gar auf eine demokratische Neuordnung des gesamten Nahen Ostens ausweitet, wenn Kenneth M. Pollack schreibt
Imagine if we could rebuild Iraq as a model of what a modern Arab state
could be34, mssen sie damit rechnen, da ihnen im alten Europa bestenfalls
Naivitt, schlimmstenfalls Imperialismus vorgeworfen wird. Die politischen
Systeme aller Staaten im Nahen Osten sind mit Ausnahme Israels so weit von
demokratischen Ordnungen entfernt, da eine Demokratisierung der Region
wohl nur ber eine amerikanische Militrherrschaft angestrebt werden knnte.
Dies aber wre ein Widerspruch in sich.
Wenn das Kriegsziel Demokratisierung der Region mittels einer lngeren
amerikanischen Militrverwaltung somit als unrealistisch, ja kontraproduktiv
kritisiert wird, so bedeutet dies jedoch nicht, da der Krieg gegen Saddam
Hussein als unverantwortlich abgelehnt werden mu. Die Befreiung des Irak
blieb ein sittlich legitimes Ziel. Dieses Ziel wurde innerhalb von vier Wochen
erreicht. Es folgte die nicht weniger schwierige Aufgabe der Neuordnung des
32 Dokumentation der Rede von D. Rumsfeld ber die offiziellen Kriegsziele der
USA, in: FAZ vom 24.3.2003.
33 Resolution 687, Punkt 34; Resolution 678, Einleitung.
34 K. M. Pollack, a. a. O., S. 338.

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War der Irakkrieg ein bellum iustum?

227

politischen Systems, die nicht nur eine Aufgabe der USA, sondern auch eine
Aufgabe der Vereinten Nationen war, nicht um die Rolle der USA zu relativieren, sondern um das Ziel der eigenen Resolutionen zu erreichen, Frieden und
Sicherheit in der Region zu gewhrleisten. Mit den Sicherheitsratsresolutionen
1483 vom 22. Mai und 1551 vom 16. Oktober 2003, mit denen die Handelssanktionen gegen den Irak aufgehoben, die USA und Grobritannien als Besatzungsmchte anerkannt sowie Plne zur bergabe der Regierungsverantwortung
an den irakischen bergangsrat entwickelt wurden, wurde die Beteiligung der
Vereinten Nationen am Wiederaufbau des Landes besiegelt.
Gelegentlich war den USA vorgeworfen worden, es ginge ihnen in diesem
Krieg vor allem um konomische Interessen, mithin um die Sicherung der irakischen lquellen. Die Regierung Bush wurde mit dem Pathos der Entlarvung als
l-Lobby prsentiert. Dieser Vorwurf war und ist unseris. Zum einen sind konomische Interessen nicht eo ipso unsittlich. An der Freiheit des lhandels sind
nicht nur die USA, sondern auch die Kriegsgegner innerhalb der EU, die
OPEC-Staaten und die Entwicklungslnder interessiert. Zum anderen geht es im
Krieg gegen Saddam Hussein wie schon im Golfkrieg 1991 nicht primr um l,
sondern um die Durchsetzung der legitimen Kriegsziele des Sicherheitsrates der
Vereinten Nationen aus der Resolution 687. Im brigen zeigen auch die amerikanischen Interventionen im Kosovo 1999, in Korea 1950 und in Deutschland
1941, da der Vorwurf, es ginge den USA immer nur um konomische Interessen, falsch ist.
5. Mit der Mglichkeit eines Erfolges mu gerechnet werden knnen

Diese Frage hatte bereits vier Wochen nach Kriegsbeginn nur noch historische Bedeutung, wenn denn unter Erfolg nur die Beseitigung des Regimes von
Saddam Husseins verstanden wird. Aber der Erfolg besteht nicht nur in der Beseitigung des tyrannischen Regimes und der Vernichtung der Massenvernichtungswaffen, sondern in der Errichtung eines politischen Systems, das Frieden,
Freiheit und Sicherheit im Irak gewhrleistet. Aufgrund der terroristischen Attacken 2004 war oft der Vorwurf zu hren, die USA htten die Intervention
ohne Plne fr die Zeit danach begonnen. Selbst wenn der Vorwurf zutreffend
wre, ndert er nichts an der Legitimitt der militrischen Intervention. Auch
im Krieg gegen Hitler gab es kein Projekt der Siegermchte fr die Zeit danach
zumindest keines, auf das sich die vier Siegermchte geeinigt htten. Dasselbe galt fr die humanitren Interventionen in Bosnien-Herzegowina und im
Kosovo. Die Beendigung des Genozids und des ihn zu verantwortenden Tyrannen lieferten hinreichend Legitimitt. Aber der Vorwurf, die militrische Intervention ohne Plan fr die Zeit danach begonnen zu haben, war falsch. Der Plan
fr die Zeit danach lautete: Freiheit, Frieden, Demokratie und Menschenrechte.
Gewi htten die Siegermchte im Irak das Chaos und die Plnderungen in den

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228

Manfred Spieker

ersten Tagen nach dem Sieg verhindern sollen, aber die Umsetzung des Projektes Demokratie hngt von vielen nicht vollstndig kalkulierbaren Faktoren ab:
der Kooperation mit der irakischen Bevlkerung und der Kompromibereitschaft ihrer verschiedenen Ethnien und Religionen. Mit dem bergangsrat und
der bergangsverfassung, dem Wiederaufbau der Infrastruktur, der Gewhrleistung der Menschenrechte und den demokratischen Freiheiten der Machtbergabe an eine irakische bergangsregierung am 29. Juni 2004, den ersten demokratischen Wahlen am 30. Januar 2005, dem Referendum ber die Verfassung
und den zweiten Wahlen am 15. Dezember 2005 ist nicht wenig erreicht worden.35
Trotz der terroristischen Drohungen und der vielen Anschlge von Selbstmordattenttern war die Wahlbeteiligung am 30. Januar 2005 mit rund 66% hoch,
und auch die Regierungsbildung danach verlief reibungslos. Bei den Wahlen
am 15. Dezember 2005 beteiligten sich wiederum rund 70 %, darunter erstmals
auch die sunnitische Minderheit. Die politische Entwicklung in Palstina nach
dem Tod von Arafat und der Wahl von Abbas zu seinem Nachfolger haben
auch in Israel die Chancen fr einen Frieden verbessert.
Die Folterungen irakischer Gefangener durch amerikanische und britische
Soldaten und Mitarbeiter von Geheimdiensten sowie der Umgang mit den Berichten ber diese Folterungen seitens der zustndigen Regierungen belasteten
das Vertrauen in die Interventionsmchte. Als kriminelle Delikte sind sie von
der Strafjustiz zu ahnden. Eine Reihe von Urteilen mit hohen Haftstrafen wurde
bereits gefllt. Die Behauptung, die Delikte seien strukturell bedingt, um so die
Legitimitt der militrischen Intervention in Zweifel zu ziehen, entbehrt einer
plausiblen Begrndung.
6. Der Grundsatz der Verhltnismigkeit der Mittel mu beachtet werden,
d. h. das Schadensrisiko des Einsatzes militrischer Mittel zur Abwehr
der Bedrohung ist abzuwgen gegen das Schadensrisiko
einer fortdauernden Bedrohung

Normativ ist der Grundsatz der Verhltnismigkeit nicht schwer zu bestimmen. Das, was gerettet beziehungsweise befreit werden soll, darf im Laufe der
militrischen Intervention nicht zerstrt werden. Deshalb ist jede Kriegshandlung, die unterschiedslos auf die Vernichtung ganzer Stdte oder weiter Gebiete
und ihrer Bevlkerung abzielt, ungeachtet der eingesetzten Waffen, ein sittlich
verwerflicher Versto gegen diesen Grundsatz.36 Praktisch ist die Verhltnismigkeit der Mittel bei einer schwer durchschaubaren Nachrichtenlage nie leicht
35 Vgl. auch Henner Frtig, Die bergangsverfassung fr Irak. Ein wichtiger
Schritt auf einem langen Weg, in: Internationale Politik, 59. Jg. (2004), Heft 4,
S. 91 ff.
36 II. Vatikanisches Konzil, Gaudium et spes 80.

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War der Irakkrieg ein bellum iustum?

229

zu bestimmen. Ein gezieltes Bombardement auf die Zivilbevlkerung Bagdads,


um sie zum Verlassen der Stadt zu bewegen, wre nicht zu rechtfertigen gewesen. Ein solches Bombardement hat weder in Bagdad noch sonstwo stattgefunden. Die Zerstrungen durch die Plnderungen und das Chaos der ersten Nachkriegstage waren wohl schlimmer als jene, die durch die militrische Intervention hervorgerufen wurden.
Aber sind 10.000 Luftangriffe noch verhltnismig, 100.000 dagegen nicht
mehr? Sind vier Wochen Kriegsdauer verhltnismig, vier Monate dagegen
nicht mehr? Eine ethische Errterung des Irak-Krieges kann diese Fragen allein
nicht beantworten. Sie bleibt, wenn sie am Recht auf eine militrische Durchsetzung der Resolution 687 und auf Beseitigung des terroristischen Bedrohungspotentials Saddam Husseins festhlt, auf die Kompetenz einer mglichst objektiven militrischen Lagebeurteilung angewiesen. Im allgemeinen gilt: Je lnger
der Krieg dauert, je unkalkulierbarer sein Verlauf ist, desto zahlreicher sind die
Opfer unter Zivilisten wie Soldaten, desto grer die Zerstrungen, desto tiefer
die physischen und seelischen Wunden. Aber die Alternative zum Einsatz militrischer Mittel war und ist nicht der Frieden, sondern die Tyrannei des Regimes Saddam Husseins, sein Krieg gegen die Kurden und Schiiten und die terroristische Bedrohung der Nachbarn, Israels und der westlichen Welt. Die Beendigung dieser bel unter Einhaltung der oben genannten Grenze und des ius in
bello mu die Verhltnismigkeit der Mittel bestimmen. Drei Jahre nach der
Beendigung der militrischen Handlungen lt sich wohl feststellen, da offenkundige Verletzungen dieses Grundsatzes nicht vorliegen.
7. Das zur Hegung des Krieges entwickelte ius in bello mu beachtet werden,
d. h. a) die Wirkung der eingesetzten Waffen mu kontrollierbar, mithin auf
militrische Zwecke begrenzbar bleiben, und b) die Immunitt
der Nichtkombattanten mu gewahrt werden knnen

Auch dieses Kriterium bereitete Schwierigkeiten. Einerseits war die Kontrollierbarkeit und das heit die Zielgenauigkeit der eingesetzten Waffen seit dem
Golfkrieg 1991 noch betrchtlich weiterentwickelt worden. Die technischen
Mglichkeiten, sie genau ins Ziel zu lenken, erleichterten die Einhaltung des
Prinzips der Immunitt der Nicht-Kombattanten ebenso wie die des Grundsatzes
der Verhltnismigkeit. Andererseits bedeutete dies nicht, da Zivilisten nicht
zu Schaden kamen. Bilder von Opfern der Zivilbevlkerung, von verletzten
oder getteten Kindern und von Zerstrungen der Wohnviertel beunruhigten.
Auch wenn sie hufig nicht eo ipso bewiesen, was sie beweisen sollten, mithin
selbst als Waffe im Kriegsgeschehen eingesetzt wurden, blieb die Beunruhigung. Die Opfer unter der Zivilbevlkerung, wenn sie denn wirklich von der
kriegfhrenden Koalition verursacht wurden, knnen ungewollte Nebenwirkungen oder gar Fehlsteuerungen der eingesetzten Waffen sein. Auch bei Przisionswaffen kann es ein Versagen der Technik geben.

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230

Manfred Spieker

Entscheidend fr die Einhaltung des ius in bello ist nicht nur die technische
Kontrollierbarkeit der eingesetzten Waffen, sondern auch die nachweisbare Intention der kriegfhrenden Koalition, die Immunitt der Zivilbevlkerung zu
achten und Gefangene nach den Grundstzen des Kriegsvlkerrechts und das
heit nach dem Genfer Abkommen von 1949 zu behandeln. Ein gezielter Einsatz der Waffen gegen die Zivilbevlkerung ist sittlich verwerflich. Die kriegfhrende Koalition htte damit rechnen mssen, da ein derartiger Versto gegen die bellum-iustum-Lehre ihrer militrischen Intervention die Legitimitt
entzieht und die ffentliche Meinung demokratischer Gesellschaften (noch
mehr) gegen sie aufbringt. Es wre fr sie auch keine Entschuldigung gewesen,
wenn das Regime Saddam Husseins fortgefahren wre, in seiner Kriegfhrung
gegen das Kriegsvlkerrecht zu verstoen, die eigene Zivilbevlkerung als Geisel zu nehmen und zum Instrument einer zynischen Kriegfhrung zu machen,
zivile und militrische Einrichtungen untrennbar zu vermischen, Soldaten in Zivilkleidung kmpfen zu lassen, Kriegsgefangene unmenschlich zu behandeln,
Selbstmordattentter als Waffe zu benutzen und chemische Waffen einzusetzen.
Eine derartige Kriegfhrung htte fr die Koalition nach den Erfahrungen mit
Saddam Hussein im Golfkrieg 1991 und im Krieg gegen den Iran keine berraschung sein knnen. Und selbst wenn sie es gewesen wre, htte sie die Koalition nicht von der Pflicht befreit, alle Kriterien der bellum-iustum-Lehre einzuhalten.
IV. Schlufolgerungen
Welche Schlufolgerungen sind aus der Anwendung der Kriterien der bellumiustum-Lehre auf den Irakkrieg zu ziehen?
1. Die bellum-iustum-Lehre ist weiterhin nicht nur gltig, sondern auch geeignet, um die Frage nach der Legitimitt einer militrischen Intervention zu
beantworten. Wenn eine Entwicklung der Waffentechnologie, wie jener der
Kernwaffen, oder der Kriegfhrungsstrategie, wie jener der humanitren Interventionen oder asymmetrischen Kriege im Zeitalter eines globalen Terrorismus, die Einhaltung des einen oder anderen Kriteriums auf den ersten
Blick erschwert oder gar unmglich macht, dann kann die Schlufolgerung
nur lauten, da ein Krieg unter diesen Umstnden nicht mehr zu legitimieren ist. Aber deshalb ist noch nicht die bellum-iustum-Lehre berholt. Im
Gegenteil, sie wird gerade besttigt und der, der sie ablehnt, beruft sich
nichtsdestotrotz auf ihre Kriterien.37
37 Ein markantes Beispiel fr einen solchen Widerspruch ist der Hirtenbrief der
deutschen Bischfe Gerechter Friede vom 27.9.2000. In Ziffer 1 erklren die Bischfe, die Lehre vom gerechten Krieg sei an ein Ende gekommen, in den Ziffern 150
bis 161 besttigen sie sie wie selbstverstndlich in ihrer Rechtfertigung humanitrer
Interventionen. Vgl. dazu M. Spieker, Gerechter Friede. Kritische Anmerkungen

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War der Irakkrieg ein bellum iustum?

231

Der Prsident des Ppstlichen Rates Justitia et Pax Renato Kardinal Martino
wird der Lehre der katholischen Kirche nicht gerecht, wenn er behauptet,
die bellum-iustum-Lehre sei wie die Todesstrafe berholt, oder wenn er
meint, ein gerechter Krieg sei unmglich. Er bersieht, da Regierungen in
ihrer Verantwortung fr das Gemeinwohl nicht nur das Recht, sondern die
Pflicht haben, ihre Brger zu verteidigen notfalls mit Waffen, wenn ihr
Leben oder ihre existentiellen Rechte bedroht sind. Diese Pflicht zur Notwehr unterstreicht nicht nur der Katechismus der Katholischen Kirche38,
von dem Martino meint, er sei durch die Enzyklika Evangelium Vitae von
Johannes Paul II. berholt. Auch in Evangelium Vitae weist der Papst auf
diese Pflicht hin39, und in seiner Neujahrsansprache an das Diplomatische
Korps beim Hl. Stuhl am 13. Januar 2003 schlo er trotz seines engagierten
Einsatzes fr den Frieden im Nahen Osten das Recht auf militrische Mittel
als ultima ratio nicht aus: Der Krieg darf, wenn es um die Sicherung des
Gemeinwohls geht, zwar nur im uersten Fall und unter sehr strengen Bedingungen gewhlt werden, aber er darf gewhlt werden.40
2. Die Frage nach der Mglichkeit einer sittlichen Rechtfertigung der militrischen Intervention der Vereinigten Staaten und ihrer Verbndeten im Irak
lt sich mit den ethischen Kriterien der bellum-iustum-Lehre allein nicht
beantworten. Dazu bedarf es auch einer kompetenten Analyse der politischen, vlkerrechtlichen und militrischen Entwicklungen im Irak und im
Nahen Osten. Erst wenn eine solche Analyse und die sittliche Orientierung
zusammenkommen, ist eine ethische Reflexion, mithin eine Rechtfertigung
oder Mibilligung der militrischen Intervention im Irak mglich. Auch auf
der Basis hoher Kompetenz aber werden die Analysen der politischen und
militrischen Entwicklungen sowie die Interpretationen des Vlkerrechts
nicht immer zu identischen Ergebnissen fhren.41 Dies gilt auch fr bischfliche Stellungnahmen.42 Es ist ein Gebot des inneren Friedens in einer demokratischen Gesellschaft, abweichende Meinungen dann nicht des Fundazum Hirtenbrief der deutschen Bischfe vom 27. September 2000, in: Die Neue Ordnung, 55. Jg. (2001), S. 467 ff. Eine nchterne Ehrenrettung der bellum-iustumLehre aus evangelischer Perspektive liefert Wilfried Hrle, Wenn Gewalt ethisch geboten ist. Das Vorgehen der USA und die christliche Vorstellung vom gerechten Frieden, in: Zeitzeichen, 3. Jg. (2002), Heft 2, S. 30 ff.
38 KKK 2265.
39 Johannes Paul II., Evangelium Vitae 55. Vgl. auch Joseph Ratzinger, Auf der
Suche nach dem Frieden, in: FAZ vom 11.6.2004.
40 Johannes Paul II., Ansprache an das beim Hl. Stuhl akkreditierte Diplomatische
Korps am 13.1.2003, in: Osservatore Romano (deutschsprachige Wochenausgabe) vom
24.1.2003, Ziffer 4.
41 Darauf weisen auch die amerikanischen Bischfe in ihrem Statement on Iraq
vom 13.11.2002 hin.
42 Vgl. auch Robert Kennedy, War and the bishops, a. a. O.

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232

Manfred Spieker

mentalismus, der Hresie, des Imperialismus oder gar der sittlichen Verderbtheit zu bezichtigen.
3. Die Politik hat es in der Regel nicht mit der Entscheidung zwischen Licht
und Finsternis, zwischen einem groen Gut, genannt Frieden, und einem
groen bel, genannt Krieg, sondern mit der Wahl zwischen zwei beln zu
tun. Die Alternative zum Irakkrieg war nicht der Frieden, sondern die Fortdauer der despotischen Herrschaft Saddam Husseins, seiner terroristischen
Bedrohung und seiner Miachtung der 21 Beschlsse des Sicherheitsrates
der Vereinten Nationen. In einem solchen Dilemma zwischen zwei beln
das kleinere bel zu whlen, ist die Kunst der Politik und eine sittliche
Entscheidung dazu. Die militrische Intervention im Irak war gegenber
einem Fortbestand der Herrschaft Saddam Husseins das kleinere bel. Sie
war moralisch gerechtfertigt.43
Zusammenfassung
Wer den Irakkonflikt erst im Herbst 2002 mit der Resolution 1441 des Sicherheitsrates beginnen lt, unterliegt einem folgenreichen Irrtum. Er rckt die bescheidenen,
aber immerhin vorhandenen Fortschritte bei den Abrstungsinspektionen in den Mittelpunkt seiner Betrachtung. Er hlt die Inspektionen fr ebenso unabgeschlossen wie
erfolgversprechend und wertet die am 20. Mrz 2003 beginnende militrische Intervention der Vereinigten Staaten und ihrer Verbndeten als Angriffskrieg. Der Irakkonflikt aber begann am 2. August 1990 mit dem berfall irakischer Truppen auf Kuwait.
Der Sicherheitsrat der UNO beauftragte die mit der Regierung von Kuwait kooperierenden Lnder unter der Fhrung der USA, die irakischen Truppen mit militrischen
Mitteln aus Kuwait zu vertreiben. Dies gelang innerhalb weniger Wochen, aber die in
der Resolution 687 vom 3. April 1991 genannten Waffenstillstandsbedingungen waren
bis zum 20. Mrz 2003 von Saddam Hussein nicht erfllt worden.
Um die Frage zu beantworten, ob der Irakkrieg 2003 ein bellum iustum war, mssen zum einen die Fragen beantwortet werden, ob der Grund fr die Wiederaufnahme
militrischer Handlungen sittlich zu rechtfertigen war, ob die Ziele des Krieges legitim und die Mittel angemessen waren; zum anderen mssen die politischen und militrischen Entwicklungen im Irak und im Nahen Osten einer kompetenten Analyse unterzogen werden. Die vorliegende Untersuchung kommt zu dem Ergebnis, da die Alternative zum Irakkrieg 2003 nicht der Frieden, sondern die Fortdauer der despotischen
Herrschaft Saddam Husseins, seiner terroristischen Bedrohung und seiner Miachtung
der 21 Beschlsse des Sicherheitsrates der Vereinten Nationen gewesen wre. Die militrische Intervention im Irak im Frhjahr 2003 war deshalb gegenber einer Fortdauer der Herrschaft Saddam Husseins das kleinere bel.

43 Vgl. auch G. Weigel, Iraq and just war, revisited, in: The Catholic Difference
vom 21.4.2004, in: www.eppc.org/publications/pub ID 2076 (3.5.2004).

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War der Irakkrieg ein bellum iustum?

233

Summary
Anyone who thinks that the Iraq war in Autumn 2002 started with Resolution 1441
of the U.N. Security Council would be in error. He would emphasize the modest but
existing progress in the disarmament inspections and also emphasize the fact that
these inspections were not yet completed. For him the military intervention of the
United States and her allies, which had begun on March 20th, 2003 was an attack war.
Yet, the Iraq Conflict had begun on August 2nd, 1990, when the Iraq troops marched
into Kuwait. The U.N. Security Council sanctioned cooperation with the Kuwait
government under the leadership of the USA, to drive back the Iraq troops from Kuwait with military force. This happened within a few weeks; but the conditions for
cease fire, cited in Resolution 687 of April 3rd, 1991, were not fulfilled by Saddam
Hussein until March 20th, 2003.
The answer to the question of whether the Iraq war of 2003 was a bellum iustum"
depends on one's judgment of whether the reason to resume military activities was
ethically right, if the aims of the coalition were legitimate, and if the means were
appropriate. Such a judgment would have to rest on a competent account and analysis
of the political and military developments in Iraq and in the Near East. This paper
concludes that the alternative to the Iraq war of 2003 was not peace but a continuation of the despotic rule of Saddam Hussein, his terroristic menace, and the disregard
of the 21 resolutions of the U.N. Security Council. In this respect the military intervention was the lesser evil.

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IV. Zur konomischen Dimension


der Globalisierung

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Globalisierung der Wirtschaft und Kompetenz der Manager


Von Eduard Gaugler
Seit dem Ende des Zweiten Weltkriegs und besonders in den letzten drei
Jahrzehnten nimmt die Globalisierung der Wirtschaft in starkem Mae zu. Immer mehr Wirtschaftszweige betreiben einen weltweiten Austausch ihrer Erzeugnisse und Leistungen sowie deren Produktion an zahlreichen Standorten in
vielen Lndern. Fr die Menschen und fr viele Unternehmen bringt die Globalisierung Vernderungen ihrer gewohnten Lebens- und Arbeitsweisen. Viele
Menschen verbinden mit der Globalisierung der Wirtschaft starke Befrchtungen.
I. Vielfalt und Tradition der Globalisierung
Ganz allgemein bedeutet Globalisierung Begegnung mit den weltweit unterschiedlichen Lebensweisen der Menschen und der Vlker; sie macht die Vielfalt menschlichen Lebens fr mglichst viele erfahrbar und soll sie ihnen zum
Vorteil werden lassen (Hofstede 1997). In diesem Sinne beschrnkt sich die
Globalisierung nicht auf die Wirtschaft. Weltweite Verflechtungen gibt es u. a.
in der Politik und zwischen den Staaten, bei den Religionen und Kirchen, in
der Kultur und in den Wissenschaften, beim Militr, beim Tourismus und im
Sport und auch beim Terrorismus (Bergsdorf 2004). Offensichtlich gibt es Interdependenzen zwischen solchen Globalisierungsbereichen, die die Auswirkungen
der Globalisierung auf die Menschen intensivieren knnen. Die Geschichte der
letzten dreitausend Jahre kennt zahlreiche Beispiele fr globale Tendenzen in
verschiedenen Lebensbereichen der Menschen.
Die Globalisierung der Wirtschaft ist zwar keine Neuigkeit in der Menschheitsgeschichte; sie ist aber in der Gegenwart besonders weit fortgeschritten
und beeinflusst vor allem in den Industrielndern unmittelbar und in starkem
Umfang das Leben der heutigen Menschen. Die moderne Globalisierung der
Wirtschaft zeigt deutliche Unterschiede zu hnlichen Ausdehnungen wirtschaftlicher Aktivitten im Altertum, im Mittelalter und im 18. und 19. Jahrhundert.
Die folgenden berlegungen orientieren sich an der Globalisierung der Wirtschaft in der Gegenwart.
Globalisierung ist ein allgemeiner Begriff fr die intensive internationale
Verflechtung von Volkswirtschaften, die in den letzten drei bis vier Jahrzehnten

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238

Eduard Gaugler

stetig und stark zugenommen hat; sie beinhaltet einen steigenden Austausch von
Waren, Dienstleistungen und Kapital ber nationale Lndergrenzen hinweg. Die
Globalisierung der Wirtschaft wird vielfach in Verbindung gesehen (1) mit dem
Technischen Fortschritt, besonders bei Transport- und Kommunikationstechniken (mit sinkenden Transaktionskosten), (2) mit dem schrittweisen Abbau von
herkmmlichen Beschrnkungen im internationalen Gterhandel und nicht zuletzt (3) mit der internationalen Liberalisierung der Kapitalmrkte, die sich auf
eine vermehrte Konvertibilitt der Whrungen sttzt.
In wirtschaftshistorischer Betrachtung stellt die Globalisierung die derzeit
hchste Entwicklungsstufe international verflochtener Wirtschaftsaktivitten dar.
Sie bildet dabei die fnfte Stufe:
Haus- und Klosterwirtschaften als in sich geschlossene Wirtschaftseinheiten
(als vorherrschende Wirtschaftsform): der Konsum in diesen Wirtschaftseinheiten ist grundstzlich auf deren Eigenproduktion beschrnkt.
Stadt- und Regionalwirtschaften mit Gter- und Leistungsaustausch in und
zwischen den Wirtschaftseinheiten eines lokal bzw. regional begrenzten Gebietes.
Volkswirtschaften (Nationalkonomie) in einzelnen Nationalstaaten.
Supranationale Zusammenschlsse von Volkswirtschaften z. B. MontanUnion, EWG, EU; COMECON; Asean-Lnder etc.
Globale Wirtschaft: Weltweite Verflechtungen wirtschaftlicher Aktivitten in
groem Umfang ber nationalstaatliche und kulturelle Grenzen hinweg.
Die Globalisierung der Wirtschaft erstreckt sich mit unterschiedlichen Intensitten grundstzlich auf vier Bereiche (Hesse 1993, Sp. 402 f.):
Absatzmrkte
Der Welthandel zeigt sich als globaler Markt fr den Austausch von Gtern
und Dienstleistungen.
Finanz- und Kapitalmrkte
Der weltweite Geld- und Kapitalverkehr sttzt sich in erheblichem Umfang
auf die modernen Informations- und Kommunikationstechniken.
Produktion von Gtern und Dienstleistungen
Die Erzeugung wirtschaftlicher Gter lst sich zunehmend von traditionellen
Produktionsstandorten und verteilt sich zufolge von Standortvorteilen ber
Lndergrenzen hinweg.
Arbeitsmrkte
Zunehmender Einsatz von Arbeitskrften auerhalb ihrer Herkunftslnder
und in fr sie fremden Kulturen (Arbeitnehmer, Experten, Manager).

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Globalisierung der Wirtschaft und Kompetenz der Manager

239

II. Gegenwartsprobleme der Globalisierung in Deutschland


Die sozio-konomische Problematik der Globalisierung der Wirtschaft zeigt
sich in Deutschland (und in anderen Industrielndern) an folgenden Phnomenen:
Selbstverstndliche und breite Akzeptanz der Globalisierungsvorteile vor allem im Konsumgterbereich, wo die Globalisierung der Wirtschaft als Mehrung der individuellen Lebensqualitt erfahren wird. Alltglicher Konsum
von international angebotenen Verbrauchsgtern (siehe Sortimente in Supermrkten), internationale Restaurants, internationale Gebrauchsgter (Kleidung, Haushaltsgerte, Autos etc.), globale Freizeit- und Urlaubsangebote
(weltweiter Tourismus).
Scharfe Kritik an den tatschlichen bzw. vermeintlich negativen Wirkungen
der Globalisierung und an den Herausforderungen, die sich aus der Globalisierung fr Individuen, fr soziale Gruppen (z. B. Arbeitnehmer) und fr
Staaten ergeben.
Geringe Bereitschaft breiter Bevlkerungskreise zur Abwgung der Vorteile
aus der Globalisierung mit den tatschlichen Belastungseffekten, verbunden
mit der Tendenz zu einem schizophrenen Verhalten zur Globalisierung der
Wirtschaft.
Die ungengende Durchsicht breiter Bevlkerungskreise durch komplexe
Globalisierungsprozesse in der Wirtschaft stimuliert u. a.
Befrchtungen ber Bedrohungen fr Gesellschaft und Kultur durch Globalisierung,
individuelle ngste und Massenngste,
Zusammenschlsse von Globalisierungskritikern und -gegnern,
Protestaktionen gegen Globalisierung,
Massenproteste (teilweise aggressiv und gewaltttig) gegen Weltwirtschaftskonferenzen, die immer wieder selbst zu global events werden.
III. Kontroverse Globalisierungsdiskussion
Die Kritik an der Globalisierung der Wirtschaft besitzt in Deutschland eine
breite Palette von Argumenten und Behauptungen (vgl. u. a. Balzer/Bauchmller 2003); die Diskussion der komplexen Globalisierungsprobleme ist vielfach
sehr kontrovers; einige Stichworte aus dieser Diskussion:
Die Globalisierung der Wirtschaft trage zu einer Einebnung, zur Verflachung
der kulturellen Vielfalt in der Welt bei (Coca-Cola-Syndrom).

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Das Tempo, die Geschwindigkeit der Globalisierung der Wirtschaft in den


letzten Jahrzehnten berfordere die Anpassungsfhigkeit der von ihr betroffenen Menschen, Vlker und Staaten.
Die Politik und die gegenwrtigen Regierungen der Staaten seien nicht imstande, eine globale Ordnung fr die Wirtschaft zu schaffen und sie weltweit
durchzusetzen.
Die Globalisierung trage an den internationalen Mrkten zunchst zur Verschrfung des Wettbewerbs, danach aber zu dessen Ausschaltung bei, so dass
nach und nach globale Monopole mit der Neigung zum Missbrauch ihrer
konomischen und politischen Macht entstnden.
Die Globalisierung der Wirtschaft forciere zumal nach dem politischen Untergang des Sozialismus/Kommunismus den Kapitalismus und untersttze
damit die Entstehung des sog. Turbo-Kapitalismus.
Die Globalisierung der Wirtschaft trage an den Finanz- und Kapitalmrkten
dazu bei, dass die Kapitalanleger, die Brsen und die Finanzanalysten die
konomische Entwicklung dominieren mit der Folge, dass die Maximierung
des Shareholder-Value das alleinige Wirtschaftsprinzip bilde.
Die Globalisierung der Wirtschaft bewirke den Abbau der Sozialstandards in
den Industrielndern: Reduzierung der Arbeitnehmerrechte, Schwchung der
Gewerkschaften, Abbau der Mitbestimmung der Arbeitnehmer in der Wirtschaft und in den Betrieben.
Die Globalisierung der Wirtschaft verstrke in den Industriestaaten (besonders in Deutschland) die Arbeitslosigkeit.
Die Globalisierung der Wirtschaft vernichte die mittelstndische Wirtschaft
durch die konomische und politische bermacht der global agierenden Multinationalen Unternehmen und Konzerne.
Die Globalisierung der Wirtschaft gefhrde eine weltweite Beachtung des
Umweltschutzes und bewirke, dass das kologische Nachhaltigkeitsprinzip
ignoriert werde.
Die Globalisierung der Wirtschaft schdige die Lnder der Dritten Welt; sie
verlagere den Wohlstand und dessen Mehrung in die bereits entwickelten Industrielnder.
Die eben skizzierte Kritik an der Globalisierung der Wirtschaft kann in diesem Beitrag nicht im einzelnen diskutiert werden; dies geschieht in der neueren
Literatur ohnedies sehr ausfhrlich (vgl. u. a. Balzer/Bauchmller 2003). Zwei
der oben genannten Probleme behandeln in diesem Band die Beitrge von President Nicholas T. Pinchuk (Multinational Corporations) und von Prof. Jrg Althammer (Globalisierung und das Problem der Armut). Die kritischen Diskussionen zur Globalisierung der Wirtschaft machen deutlich, dass sie zwar eng mit

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Globalisierung der Wirtschaft und Kompetenz der Manager

241

technischen und naturwissenschaftlichen Entwicklungen in der Gegenwart verbunden ist, dass sie aber selbst kein Naturgeschehen ohne Einwirkungsmglichkeiten des Menschen ist. Die Globalisierung der Wirtschaft hat man als einen
sozio-konomischen Prozess zu verstehen, von dem Individuen, Gesellschaften
und Vlker in weiten Bereichen unserer Welt eben global betroffen sind
(Hofstede 1997). Globalisierung der Wirtschaft stellt fr den modernen Menschen eine Gestaltungsaufgabe dar, die individuelle und kollektive Herausforderungen an seine Verantwortung beinhaltet (Wissenschaftliche Arbeitsgruppe
1999, Sinn 2004).
Vorrangig sind es zwei Erfordernisse, denen eine Humanisierung der Globalisierung zu entsprechen hat. Zum einen geht es um einen globalen Ordnungsrahmen fr weltweite Wirtschaftsaktivitten; zum zweiten ist nach der Bedeutung der Globalisierung der Wirtschaft fr die Qualifizierung der wirtschaftenden Menschen zu fragen.
IV. Weltweite Wirtschaftsordnung
Ein globaler Ordnungsrahmen fr die Wirtschaft verlangt die Weiterentwicklung der nationalen und internationalen Regeln und Normen fr weltwirtschaftliche Aktivitten, beispielsweise fr den Waren- und Dienstleistungsaustausch,
fr Finanz- und Kapitalmarkt-Transaktionen, fr die Regulierung der Arbeitsmrkte, fr Umweltschutznormen, fr den Patentschutz etc. (Sautter 1993). Vermutlich mssen nicht alle Regeln fr globale Wirtschaftsaktivitten supranational kodifiziert werden; eine effiziente Weltwirtschaftsordnung kann man sich
derzeit aber wohl kaum ohne internationales Wirtschaftsrecht, das auch die Basis fr eine entsprechende Gerichtsbarkeit bildet, vorstellen. Als Grundlage fr
eine globale Wirtschaftsordnung knnen weltweite Konzepte fr wirtschaftliche
Aktivitten dienen (z. B. Global Compact von UN-Generalsekretr Kofi Annan,
Konzept des International Labour Office, Genf, fr A Fair Globalization), die
ihrerseits auf global verstandenen und global akzeptierten Menschenrechten fuen (Blumenwitz 2004). Bei der Ausformung eines globalen Ordnungsrahmens
fr die Wirtschaft wird man zunehmend auch auf die Mitwirkung der konstruktiv operierenden Nicht-Regierungs-Organisationen (NGOs) Wert legen, wie
jngste Kooperationsbeispiele zwischen Multinationalen Unternehmen (global
players) und NGOs zeigen.
V. Aneignung globaler Qualifikation
Fortschritte bei der Entwicklung eines globalen Ordnungsrahmens machen
die Bestrebungen, auf die Qualifizierungserfordernisse bei der Globalisierung
zu achten, nicht berflssig. Auch sollten sich die Vermittlung und der Erwerb

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242

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von Fhigkeiten, um die Auswirkungen einer globalen Wirtschaft zu meistern,


nicht auf einen limitierten Kreis von Experten und Managern beschrnken.
Vielmehr wachsen die Chancen der Globalisierung, dem Gemeinwohl der Menschen dienen zu knnen, mit der Zahl der Menschen, die sich ein weltweites
Denken aneignen, die nach einem globalen Horizont fr ihr Denken, Urteilen,
Verhalten und Handeln streben. Fr soziale Positivwirkungen aus der Globalisierung der Wirtschaft ist es vorteilhaft, wenn mglichst viele Menschen die
Verschiedenheiten zwischen Menschen, Vlkern, Staaten und Kulturen (diversity) innerlich bejahen und bei sich selbst die Neigung zum zwischenmenschlichen Neid bekmpfen. Die konomischen Vorteile aus der Globalisierung nehmen zu, wenn sich interkulturelle Kompetenzen ausbreiten bei Konsumenten fr
ihren alltglichen Umgang mit einem international vielfltigen Waren-, Gterund Dienstleistungsangebot, bei Arbeitnehmern in Berufen mit internationalen
Arbeitskontakten und insbesondere bei Verantwortungstrgern in der Wirtschaft,
in Verbnden und in Unternehmen mit weltweiten Fhrungsaufgaben (Manager,
Experten). Dies gilt keineswegs nur fr Fhrungskrfte in sog. Multinationalen
Unternehmen und Konzernen (global players); auch zahlreiche Unternehmen,
die im engeren Sinne nicht zu Multinationalen Firmen zhlen, pflegen internationale Wirtschaftsbeziehungen; zu solchen Firmen gehren in Deutschland immer mehr auch mittlere und kleinere Firmen in der mittelstndischen Wirtschaft; auch deren Fhrungskrfte und Mitarbeiter tragen durch den Erwerb
interkultureller Qualifikationen zur erfolgreichen Globalisierung der Wirtschaft
bei.
Die Globalisierung der Wirtschaft beginnt mit der Internationalisierung von
Unternehmen (vgl. u. a. Dlfer 1999, Kutschker 2002, Macharzina 2002). Internationale Aktivitten von Unternehmen stellen an die Fhrungskrfte (Manager)
hohe Anforderungen. Nach dem Zweiten Weltkrieg haben viele us-amerikanische Manager bei ihren Bestrebungen, in Europa ttig zu werden, erlebt, dass
die sozio-konomischen und kulturellen Rahmenbedingungen fr eine erfolgreiche Geschftsttigkeit teilweise erheblich von den Erfahrungen aus ihrem
eigenen Land abweichen. Umgekehrt haben deutsche Firmen seit den 1970er
Jahren bei Betriebsgrndungen in den USA und bei der bernahme amerikanischer Unternehmen teilweise erhebliches Lehrgeld dafr bezahlt, dass sie die
Besonderheiten der Wirtschaft und der Kultur in den USA zu wenig beachteten
bzw. ihre interkulturelle Kompetenz nicht gengend entwickelt war. hnliche
Erfahrungen haben japanische und koreanische Konzerne in den letzten Jahrzehnten bei ihren wirtschaftlichen Aktivitten in einigen europischen Lndern
gemacht. Selbst innerhalb von Europa sind die konomisch relevanten, interkulturellen Unterschiede betrchtlich, so dass es wie das eklatante Beispiel eines
deutsch-schwedisch-schweizerischen Zusammenschlusses in einem Konzern der
Elektrotechnik seit den 1980er Jahren zeigt den Top Managern groe Schwierigkeiten bereitete, bei den kulturellen Eigenheiten der beteiligten Lnder zu

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einer konomisch erfolgreichen Arbeit zu kommen. hnliche und teils noch


schlimmere Erfahrungen macht seit einem knappen Jahrzehnt einer der bekanntesten deutschen Automobilkonzerne bei seinen Engagements in den USA, in
Japan und in Korea.
VI. Interkulturelle Kompetenz der Fhrungskrfte
Internationalisierung von Unternehmen und Konzernen ist eine elementare
Komponente der Globalisierung der Wirtschaft. Offensichtlich gelingt die Internationalisierung in einer auf Wettbewerb angelegten Weltwirtschaft nur, wenn
die international agierenden Fhrungskrfte ber eine qualifizierte interkulturelle Kompetenz verfgen (Martin 2001). Ebenso deutlich zeigen die misslungenen Flle, Unternehmen und Konzerne international erfolgreich zu fhren, dass
mit der Aneignung interkultureller Qualifikation durch Fhrungskrfte mehr als
der Erwerb einer Fremdsprache gemeint ist (Gaugler 1993, Weibach 2004).
Dennoch Fhrungskrfte knnen bei der Kooperation mit Wirtschaftspartnern
in anderen Kulturen die Sprachenunterschiede nicht negieren.
Vor etwa zwei Jahrzehnten haben Universitten in Deutschland begonnen, in
das Studium von Fchern, die knftige Fhrungskrfte der Wirtschaft bevorzugen (Betriebswirtschaftslehre; Business Administration), wieder den Unterricht
in Fremdsprachen zu integrieren, so wie das schon vor hundert Jahren die damaligen Handelshochschulen taten, die den Auftrag hatten, qualifizierten kaufmnnischen Nachwuchs heranzubilden. Das Angebot der Universitten an
Sprachen als Ergnzung zum betriebswirtschaftlichen Fachstudium reicht von
Englisch, Spanisch, Franzsisch, Italienisch neuerdings teilweise bis zum Japanischen und Chinesischen. Diese Sprachenkurse sind weniger sprachwissenschaftlich und weniger an der jeweiligen belletristischen Literatur ausgerichtet;
vielmehr besitzen sie hauptschlich linguistische Komponenten mit soziokonomischen Sprachinhalten. Da viele Studierende bereits im Gymnasium mehr oder
weniger gut die englische und teilweise auch die franzsische Sprache lernen,
bevorzugen manche Studenten an der Universitt eine der anderen modernen
Sprachen, um so eine breitere Sprachkompetenz zu erwerben. Da es nicht mglich ist, alle wirtschaftlich wichtigen Sprachen fr den spteren Managerberuf
bereits im Hochschulstudium zu erlernen (und auerdem die Studenten meist
noch nicht wissen knnen, welche Sprache sie spter zustzlich zum Englischen im Beruf bentigen), soll der Sprachunterricht im Studium auch allgemein die Fhigkeit frdern, nach dem Studium in der Berufsphase weitere Sprachen sich aneignen zu knnen. Die englische Sprache betrachtet man heute fr
den Managernachwuchs als unverzichtbar; freilich ist in der deutschen Wirtschaft auch die Meinung verbreitet, dass besonders qualifizierte Nachwuchskrfte eine oder sogar zwei weitere Wirtschaftssprachen wenigstens in Grundzgen kennen sollten. Auerdem sollen die Studierenden den Sprachunterricht an

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244

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den heimischen Hochschulen durch ein oder zwei Studiensemester an einer


Hochschule im fremdsprachigen Ausland sowie durch Firmenpraktika in auslndischen Unternehmen ergnzen.
VII. Vermittlung von kulturspezifischem Wissen
Auslandsstudium und Auslandspraktika weisen auf eine weitere Komponente
hin, die dem Managernachwuchs bereits beim Studium an der Hochschule in
Deutschland begegnet. Zustzlich zum Fremdsprachenangebot wollen manche
Universitten die interkulturelle Kompetenz der Studierenden mit Lehrinhalten
frdern, die konomisch relevantes Kulturwissen vermitteln. Eine weltweite,
globale Vermittlung dieses Wissens ist faktisch unmglich; deshalb wird dieses
Zusatzwissen differenziert nach Kulturregionen und korrespondierend zu den
angebotenen Fremdsprachen prsentiert. Im einzelnen gehren zu diesem kulturspezifischen Zusatzwissen, soweit es fr konomisches und unternehmerisches Handeln der knftigen Manager direkt oder indirekt bedeutsam erscheint,
folgende Inhalte: die politischen Systeme in der Kulturregion, die dortigen gesellschaftlichen Strukturen und Basisprozesse, die wesentlichen geschichtlichen
Entwicklungen der Kulturregion in der Neuzeit sowie Wirtschafts- und Kulturgeographie der jeweiligen Region (Gaugler 1993). Mit diesen Kenntnissen sollen die Nachwuchskrfte fr das Management internationaler Unternehmen eine
persnliche Sensibilitt fr Besonderheiten der Kulturen und fr deren Dynamik
entwickeln. Man erwartet, dass die konomisch ausgerichteten Fremdsprachen
gemeinsam mit dem kulturspezifischen Zusatzwissen den Studierenden Impulse
und Orientierungen fr ihr Verhalten als Manager gegenber Personen und
Institutionen in anderen Kulturen geben.
VIII. Training fr interkulturelles Verhalten
Die ausreichende Beherrschung der fremden Wirtschaftssprache und die Aneignung des kulturspezifischen Wissens sind fr eine kulturberschreitende
Kommunikation erforderlich; sie reichen aber dafr gerade bei Managern nicht
aus. Zur interkulturellen Kompetenz von Fhrungskrften gehrt die Fhigkeit
zu einem adquaten Verhalten gegenber Menschen aus und in anderen Kulturbereichen (Oechsler 2000; Festing 2004). Immer mehr erkennt man die Notwendigkeit, nicht nur kognitiv Wissen ber kulturelle Besonderheiten zu vermitteln sondern auch Techniken und Geschicklichkeiten zur Kommunikation
zwischen Kulturen einzuben. Dies kann aus mehreren Grnden im Studium an
Hochschulen nur sehr begrenzt erfolgen. Gnstiger sind dafr die Voraussetzungen bei den sog. Trainee-Programmen, die Unternehmen mit Fhrungsnachwuchskrften durchfhren, sowie im Rahmen von betrieblichen und berbetrieblichen Weiterbildungsprogrammen. Inzwischen gibt es verschiedene Metho-

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Globalisierung der Wirtschaft und Kompetenz der Manager

245

den fr das sog. interkulturelle Handlungstraining. Dazu dient u. a. auch der


sog. culture assimilator, bei dem die Nachwuchskrfte fr das Management
und die fr einen Einsatz im Ausland vorgesehenen Manager den adquaten
Umgang mit Standardsituationen in anderen Kulturen mit Hilfe sog. Critical
incidents lernen und ben sollen (Scherm 1995).
Neben den Bestrebungen von Hochschulen, den Studierenden beim Erwerb
von Grundlagen fr interkulturelle Kompetenz zu helfen, sind die genannten
Traineeprogramme fr Nachwuchskrfte und die Qualifizierungsangebote bei
der Weiterbildung von Managern Wege, um die internationalen, kulturberschreitenden Aktivitten von Unternehmen und Konzernen bei ihren Fhrungskrften zu verbessern und damit einen Beitrag zur Humanisierung der Globalisation der Wirtschaft zu leisten. Dafr ist es freilich auch ntig, dass die
sozialethischen Probleme internationaler Wirtschaftsaktivitten vertieft errtert
werden. Die interkulturelle Kompetenz der Manager verlangt eine sozialethische Begrndung der Werte und der Verhaltensprinzipien, die ihren Einsatz bei
konomischen Aufgaben im Kontext verschiedener Kulturen steuern. Die dabei
auftretenden Fragen und Probleme warten noch auf eine tiefergehende Bearbeitung durch die Sozialethik.
Literatur
Balzer, Markus/Bauchmller, Michael: Die 10 Irrtmer der Globalisierungsgegner.
Frankfurt/Main 2003
Bergsdorf, Wolfgang: Globalisierung die Karriere eines Begriffs. In: Rheinischer
Merkur, Nummer 36 vom 2. September 2004, S. 26
Blumenwitz, Dieter: Die Universalitt der Menschenrechte. Kln 2004
Dlfer, Eberhard: International Management In Diverse Cultural Areas Internationales Management in unterschiedlichen Kulturbereichen. Mnchen 1999
Festing, Marion: Internationales Management. In: Eduard Gaugler, Walter A. Oechsler, Wolfgang Weber (Hrsg.), Handwrterbuch des Personalwesens. 3. Auflage.
Stuttgart 2004, Sp. 963978
Gaugler, Eduard: Globalisierung Folgerungen fr die Aus- und Weiterbildung im
Management. In: Matthias Haller u. a. (Hrsg.), Globalisierung der Wirtschaft. Bern
1993, S. 301317
Hesse, Helmut: Globalisierung. In: Georges Enderle u. a. (Hrsg.), Lexikon der Wirtschaftsethik. Freiburg/Basel/Wien 1993, Sp. 402410
Hofstede, Geert: Lokales Denken, globales Handeln. Mnchen 1997
Kutschker, Michael/Schmid, Stefan: Internationales Management. Mnchen 2002
Macharzina, Klaus: Internationales Management. In: Eduard Gaugler, Richard Khler
(Hrsg.), Entwicklungen der Betriebswirtschaftslehre. Stuttgart 2002, S. 491508

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246

Eduard Gaugler

Martin, Cornelia: Interkulturelle Kompetenzen und deren Vermittelbarkeit durch Repatriates. Mnchen und Mering 2001
Oechsler, Walter A.: Personal und Arbeit. 7. Auflage. Mnchen 2000
Sautter, Hermann: Weltwirtschaftsordnung. In: Georges Enderle u. a. (Hrsg.), Lexikon
der Wirtschaftsethik. Freiburg/Basel/Wien 1993, Sp. 12481256
Scherm, Ewald: Internationales Personalmanagement. Mnchen 1995
Sinn, Hans-Werner: Das Dilemma der Globalisierung. St. Gallen 2004
Weibach, Barbara: Interkulturelle Fhrungskompetenz. In: QUEM-Bulletin 6/2004
vom Dezember 2004, S. 811
Wissenschaftliche Arbeitsgruppe fr weltkirchliche Aufgaben der Deutschen Bischofskonferenz (Hrsg.): Die vielen Gesichter der Globalisierung. Bonn 1999

Zusammenfassung
Globalisierung der Wirtschaft ist ein Teil einer weltweiten Entwicklung in unterschiedlichen Lebensbereichen. In den letzten Jahrzehnten ist die Globalisierung weit
fortgeschritten und beeinflusst sehr stark das alltgliche Leben der heutigen Menschen. Mit dem zunehmenden Austausch von Waren, Dienstleistungen und Kapital
ber nationale Grenzen hinweg entstehen in der Wirtschaft weltweite Verflechtungen.
Die komplexen Globalisierungsprozesse sind fr viele Menschen wenig durchschaubar und fhren verbreitet zu ngsten und Befrchtungen. Die Folgen der Globalisierung werden in Deutschland hufig sehr kontrovers diskutiert. Zur Humanisierung der
Globalisierung sind eine weltweite Wirtschaftsordnung und die qualifizierte interkulturelle Kompetenz der Manager in der Wirtschaft erforderlich. In der Aus- und Weiterbildung der Fhrungskrfte fr die Wirtschaft gewinnt die Vermittlung von interkultureller Kompetenz an Bedeutung.

Summary
Globalisation of the economy is part of a world-wide development in various fields
of social life. In the last decades globalisation has made considerable progress and has
had a major impact on everyday life of modern man. Global interconnections in economic terms are due to the increasing exchange of products, of services and of capital
beyond national borders.
The complex processes of globalisation are hardly transparent for many people and
lead to anxieties and fears. In Germany nowadays the consequences of globalisation
are very often discussed controversially. In order to humanize globalisation a worldwide economic charter would have to be introduced and managers should be trained
in intercultural competences. In management education and in management development a special training in intercultural competence seems to gain great importance.

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Cultural Challenges Facing Multinational Corporations


By Nicholas T. Pinchuk
I. Introduction
Managing cultural difference across wide distances is one of, if not the most,
challenging tasks facing multinationals today. The opportunities of growth and
profitability in emerging markets are compelling, and initially without apparent
downside. Commercial interests are motivated to pursue with extraordinary
vigor. As they proceed, however, businesses discover that global expansion is
not without a substantial price. National boundaries, it turns out, exist for a
reason and the inherent differences impose a local character on multinational
activity from production to process. Corporate pursuit of globalization, therefore, will not result in a single transnational culture. Rather, global expansion
will bring a level of complexity that will require substantial new investment,
will often question the very essence of a corporation's business model and will
potentially require a sweeping redefinition of the organization's own culture.
Globalization will not so much threaten national identity as it will raise broad
challenges to the nature of corporations that seek global success.
This paper is an attempt to explore the nature of, and possible responses to
those challenges. It's based on my experience as a member of various multinational corporations and as an active participant in their pursuit of globalization.
The footnotes and citations are not as numerous as is usual in a more refined
academic paper. Instead, I have tried to describe the events I've witnessed, included the stories that have been related to me by reliable sources and set forth
the conclusions I've drawn based on those real life situations. There are, of
course, alternate views of the implications. I can only offer my own interpretations in the hope that they will be both convincing and useful.
II. Global Perspective Perspective on Global
We are a global corporation! It's a declaration that has become almost a
litmus test for acceptability in the strategic profile of large business organisms
throughout the western world. The current conventional wisdom is that corporations must pursue, or at least be seen to be pursuing, emerging markets
with vigor. The opportunities are distant but large enough to be apparent even

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248

Nicholas T. Pinchuk

to the uninitiated. After all, who can resist the call of 1.3 billion new customers in China and 1 billion potential buyers in India? Opportunities appearing
so rich as to be enterprise transforming loom as quite accessible. The low
hanging commercial fruit of globalization appears available to all those who
simply have the determination to take advantage. For a corporation, the growth
and profitability is both an irresistible possibility and an imperative course of
action.
At the same time, there is concern from many quarters that innovations
spread by business will irreversibly alter national culture, for the worse. The
new technology, products, and associated lifestyles promoted by corporations
will move nationalities toward a global norm, inspired primarily by the developed countries that are the home bases of the major multinationals. In effect,
globalization will transform emerging economies into so many Americas in
waiting, evolving along a path leading to Main Street, U.S.A.
On the surface, local culture does appear vulnerable to the lure of globalization. This is especially true as modern products first enter technology hungry
markets. Corporations are indeed the primary and eager actuators of this invasion. In practice, however, it's not likely that the new will significantly erode
the primary pillars of national identity. Modern culture may be popular, but
that does not mean the core will be changed. Autos may replace pedi-cabs, but
corporate agents of the invisible hand cannot promote rock and roll to the exclusion of the Ramayana in India or Gameboys to the extinction of community
folk dancing in Thailand. The spicy joys of dan-dan noodles may be somewhat
supplanted by the ready-now tastes of a Big Mac in Chongqing. In the end,
however, the major underpinnings of culture can easily co-exist with modernization. Frozen dim sum and the wisdom of China's The Three Kingdoms are
not mutually exclusive.
In fact, globalization is more of a two-way process than is often envisioned.
As larger segments of the population embrace modernization, local preference
actually builds strength. Culture bends technology to its will, forcing multinationals to do more adapting than dictating. In the end, national identity, empowered by local people in significant numbers, is ascendant. Civilizations not
only resist undue influence but also impose their own character on any commercial enterprise, product, or process that seeks to participate in its future.
Multinationals may bring ideas but to be enduringly popular they must clearly
reflect the national environment.
Participation in the global treasure hunt launches corporations on a path that
is much more complex and difficult to predict than is first apparent. The benefits of going global are quite real. Substantial growth is indeed available. However, permanent gains are not achievable without facing difficult tradeoffs driven by the strength of local culture. To participate fully in emerging markets,

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corporations must meet multiple sets of regional requirements and, in so doing,


alter their very nature, adapting their own culture to a new multi-polar world.
III. Global Attraction
Everybody's driving globalization. The benefits are legion: better living standards for societies on both ends of the exchange and profit bonanzas for participating businesses along the commercial value chain. The potential advantages
are vast and transforming for all involved. Further, in geopolitical terms, globalization can be seen as a pillar of future world security. As outlined in Thomas
Barnett's book1, peace in the new century will be based on interdependence of
the connected world. The theory goes, for example, that China and the West
will not engage militarily because each soon will have too much to lose economically. Similarly, the European Union is viewed by some to be insurance
against another war among the great powers of the continent. It makes eminent
sense. As economies intertwine, greater understanding among countries makes
dispute more manageable and the cost of interrupting trade makes armed conflict much less viable, even as an option. The mutual transformation, the escalation, that Clausewitz cites as leading to war,2 never gets started. The world, in
effect, can be a safer and better place because of globalization. Governments
from Beijing, to Delhi, to Moscow, fully recognize both the economic and strategic value. They aggressively pursue multinational agents of commerce as a
matter of policy. Officials see the attraction of foreign capital and new technology as essential to their success as leaders. Peace and prosperity is a combination that is quite attractive to any government in almost any circumstance.
And so it is for corporations, particularly those who aspire to world leadership. It's impossible to overstate the attraction fueled by the twin business principles of scale economy and learning curve advantage. Global expansion is now
a sine qua non for any businessman seeking to keep pace with major competitors. Management gurus, like so many Cassandras, declare various phrasings of
the game is changing from featured positions in pop bookstores everywhere.
Change is, of course, abundantly evident on the business landscape of today.
However, probably the most dramatic is the rise of new mega markets in Asia
and Eastern Europe. China, for example, offers over 160 cities with over one
million people and a population now wielding over 100 million credit cards.
Cities like Shanghai, Beijing and Chongqing are changing possibly faster than
any in the history of the planet. In 1996, Shanghai alone launched 17 buildings
that exceeded 40 floors in height. Although China's economy is only about 2%
Thomas P. M. Barnett, The Pentagon's New Map, Putnam Adult, 2004.
Carl von Clausewitz, On War (Michael Howard and Peter Paret), Princeton University Press, 1984, pp. 7577.
1
2

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of world GNP, its annual increase is one of the largest, now consuming almost
one third of the world's steel and over half of its concrete. Economic power has
shifted such that the balance of supply and demand in China has already become an economic force that sets the world price for many commodities. It has
done so for several years, in such disparate items as room air conditioners and
sea containers and its influence is growing. The recent precipitous rise in steel
prices reflects the power of Chinese demand. It already is a major factor in the
calculus of world business.
India now includes a GDP growing at 6% annually and over one billion people. By some accounts, there are well over 100 million middle class Indians,
almost equal to the total population of France and England combined. Further,
India represents probably the single largest pool of educated English speaking
workers in the world, available at a fraction of the costs found elsewhere.
If a management team is not pursuing the siren's song of global markets, it's
almost penal. It's literally almost impossible to stand in a boardroom of significance in Europe and U.S. and not proclaim a focus on the opportunities of
emerging markets. The strategic attraction of growth, profitability, and worldwide share are irresistible in any corporate circumstance. Emerging economies
with higher growth and fragmented, vulnerable competition seem to be a commercial promised land. In fact, it's clear that future industry leadership will not
be sustainable without holding a significant share of the emerging markets. This
is not a matter of speculation. It's simply the commercial arithmetic of the 21st
century. Executives, therefore, are willing to dedicate substantial resources and,
certainly, significant share of strategic focus on the quest to capture these new
commercial territories.
IV. Borderless Sameness
Corporations are primary agents of globalization. They have a direct interest
in promoting both modernization and homogeneity. Multinational activity generally brings improved lifestyle but their drive for scale and sameness can also
be seen to dilute national culture and impact the richness of societies around the
world.
Advances including better communication, housing, transportation, and food
availability are, of course, a generally embraced value of international commercial irrigation. In bringing these improvements to the world, corporations inherently carry with them a particular form of modernization, usually reflecting the
preferences of their source country: McDonald's tends to reflect America; Mercedes represents a German view and Toshiba emphasizes a Japanese orientation. This aspect of the process and the attendant pressure on national culture is
not so welcome.

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There appears to be no shortage of articulate spokesmen for concerns regarding globalization and its potential dilution of national identity. Benjamin Barber
said, there is no activity . . . less interested in nations than capitalism, no challenge to frontiers more audacious than the market.3 Jerry Mander and Edward
Goldsmith commented that an intrinsic part of the process of globalization is
the rapid homogenization of global culture.4
Corporations do seem to be the agents of this identity erosion under the banner of modernization. The concern is that the invisible hand of consumerism
replaces national culture. Income becomes concentrated and national resources
are depleted. Business enlists customers and employees in pursuit of improved
lifestyles and in the dilution of their uniqueness, moving to an existence bearing
more similarity to America or Western Europe than their local communities.
Richard Barnet said that, the driving force behind globalization is a managerial revolution that has made it possible to centralize planning on a global
scale.5 The general suggestion is that multinationals will develop the capability to shift resources among jurisdictions, avoid national regulation and subvert
cultures of individual states. The work suggested that these commercial hydras
would bring billions into a world governed by a common ideology, which
seems correct when viewed in the context of the West. To be sure multinationals would dearly like to lead such centralization. It would represent an
easier, more certain and more profitable world for commercial enterprise.
However, this environment does not reflect a present or future reality.
V. Modernization, Culture and the Corporation Not so Linked
Neither the problems attributed to modernization nor the role of multinational
business in cultural hegemony appears to be valid. There are, from my perspective, two issues: the first is that all current practices and ideas are not essential
to national character. In Japan, for example, the balance between wearing of the
kimono and purchase of Chanel suits is not as crucial to local identity, as continuing the ancient concepts Honne and Tatemae in constructing public communications. In Hindu areas, the ongoing observation of Thaipusan is not as essential to building a functional society, as is maintaining the wisdom of the Vedas.
In other words, all change is not equal. The new can be embraced without necessarily impacting the essence of national identity.

Benjamin R. Barber, Jihad vs. McWorld, Ballantine Books, 1996, p. 23.


Jerry Mander and Edward Goldsmith, The Case Against the Global Economy,
Random House, 1996.
5 Richard J. Barnet & Ronald E. Muller, Global Reach: The Power of the Multinational Corporations, Simon & Schuster, 1974, p. 255.
3
4

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Second, even defining concepts and practices undergo continuous review as a


matter of natural progression. This is not unique to our time. It is not a product
of corporations but they have provided acceleration. One of the hallmarks of
our particular era is an explosion of ideas and choices along a multitude of
dimensions. This may be similar, but substantially broader, than the tide of information launched as the Silk Road first opened from the Middle East to
China or as Gutenberg's printing press initially made the written word available
in Europe. Just several decades ago, a premium was assigned to locating and
marshaling the limited sources of information accessible in reasonable time.
The choices were narrow but the perspective and guidance with which to view
these sources were well matched to the availability. Now with exploding publishing activity, cable T.V. and the Internet, ideas are available in abundance.
Today, the letters of St. Paul and the Analects of Confucius have to compete
for attention with the Gnostic myths running through the Matrix films, with the
pop religion of The Da Vinci Code and with a wide array of other works. It's
the wisdom brought to interpreting those thoughts that is now at a premium.
This matching of expanded information with capable perspective does represent
a challenge to maintaining the canons of national culture. Corporations are only
peripheral participants in this arena. It's the effective influence and persuasion
of opinion leaders that will be the biggest factor in the rise or fall of meaningful tradition.
Expansion of choice, not withstanding, there remains considerable inertia associated with the wisdoms of national identity. As anyone who has negotiated
recently in Tokyo can attest, Honne and Tatemae are alive and well in Japan,
despite full access to all the choices of a modern society. With the active and
persuasive guidance of opinion leaders, the influence of Confucius will continue
to win out.
In any case, advancements are not necessarily in themselves inconsistent with
the key elements of national identity. Modern technology and its chariot, globalization, do bring change and that wave is driven by corporations. Expansion
and acceleration of choice are inevitable in the 21st Century. I'm not sure, however, than an effective argument can be made to abstain from the mobility of
the automobile, the information availability of the Internet or the communication-ease of e-mail. Corporations, therefore, cannot be expected to refrain from
promoting globalization and its life-easing benefits.
The explosion and acceleration of choice does represent a potential challenge. The answer, however, does not lie in limiting the range of choice.
Rather, the challenge can best be met by arming nationalities with the appropriate wisdom and guidance with which to view the expanded possibilities. The
members of society whose role it is to provide that perspective, i. e., political
leaders and academic guides must rise to that challenge.

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VI. The Global Corporation Farther than it Appears


Emergence of a common global culture may not be imminent and the essence of local identity not at risk. The standards for abandoning the old are
higher than they seem. Actual experience appears to indicate that attachment to
local thought and custom is much more resistant to dilution. Three centuries
before the birth of Christ, the first Chinese emperor, Chin Shi Huangdi, received extraordinary and deadly opposition in trying to impose a common alphabet and uniform culture throughout his empire. The resistance and inertia
remain today.
In the early stages, globalization does appear to overwhelm national culture.
There is a veneer-like segment of any population who vigorously pursue new
technology and the latest improvements. These slices of the population willingly adapt their lifestyle, fully embracing the changes inherent in the waves of
multinationals entering their environments. They readily adopt new offerings,
altering their lives to take advantage. They eat fast foods, watch MTV with the
accompanying rock and roll mores, shop weekly at mega marts and dedicate
precious space to automobiles. In general, these phenomena, taken to its natural
extension, represent the cultural erosion that is often cited as the down side of
globalization. Corporations in aggressive pursuit of scale can be agents of that
early dilution. However, the demands of wider segments of population eventually come in focus and national preferences become ascendant. Samuel Huntington said, Societies can modernize and have modernized without abandoning their own cultures . . . Modernization instead strengthens cultures.6 A somewhat trivial example of this phenomenon can be seen in popular music. Early in
the rise of globalization in East Asia, MTV was broadcast in English featuring
much the same programming seen in London or New York. It seemed as
though England and America would dominate the local music scene. These
events represented a period, however, where only those few with access to the
cable broadcasts were the consumers. As viewership spread, the presentation
localized, appealing to greater segments of the population. MTV is now seen in
Mandarin, Cantonese, Hindi and other languages around Asia. It features groups
from Shanghai, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, Mumbai and other local cultural centers, often singing updated versions of folk songs, as well as new, local
compositions. In the end, corporations find that they cannot simply provide
common offerings seamlessly from place-to-place. Significant penetration of
new markets requires locally-driven adaptation.
Globalization, and the attendant process described above, drives corporations
to face a number of choices, some of which challenge the existing culture of
6 Samuel P. Huntington, The Clash of Civilizations and The Remaking of World
Order, Simon & Schuster, 1996, p. 70.

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the organizations themselves. These are, in the approximate order in which they
appear on the tactical horizon: Presence or Scale; Imperial or Federal; Individual or Community; Capital or Labor; and Conversion or Absorption.
VII. Scale or Presence? What Level of Commitment?
Should scale or presence be the goal in extending to emerging markets? This
is the first question, which presents itself to corporations seeking to reach markets and customers beyond their established base in the United States, Germany, Japan, or any other jurisdiction of the developed world.
The tradeoff inherent actually questions the level of commitment that the
organization is willing to make. Scale requires smaller dedicated resources but
has only temporary value. Presence requires substantial investment but potentially provides lasting benefits. The businessman's initial instinct is to seek customers for already committed investments: products, factories, technology and
systems. In effect, this captures scale economies and leads to a geometric
growth in profitability. Further, and perhaps most importantly, it drives the corporation down the learning curve for those particular key elements of business
structure. The resulting advance in cost and know-how creates a substantial advantage versus competition. It represents the holy grail of business operations:
superior strategic position and profitability. The possibilities raise the spectre of
a performance victory of such magnitude that it can deliver the organization
from almost any competitive threat. The pursuit of that scale strongly encourages multinationals to provide a common offering across locations and cultures. Left-hand drive cars being pushed in Japan, large refrigerators being offered in India, English language computer displays being sold in China and,
western music videos being marketed in Asia, are demonstrations of this phenomenon.
But scale fueled by congruent expansion can be a short-lived value. As penetration of a market expands, there is another imperative driving corporate direction, competing with the allure of geometric profit and scale advantage. It's the
long-term value of presence. It presents probably the first fork in the road of
corporate globalization. Products, facilities and people aimed at satisfying established preference, following country norms, are substantially more enduring.
As corporations build more experience, it becomes clear that to expand beyond a niche group, products and processes will have to be adapted to the locally tailored offerings that are inevitably preferred by the majority of national
consumers. To support that approach, a direct, active, and locally-driven presence is required. This extends to virtually every aspect of a business operation.
Consider product development. Initial financial gravity leads to development of
global lines, i. e., items that can be sold around the world . . . cost effective,

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utilitarian, flawlessly produced. Despite the economic allure, however, these offerings end up being quite limited. Many have observed that global products are
by definition average products, bridging multiple requirements from market to
market. They often do not compare well with those specifically aimed at the
needs of a particular population. Tools made for European and American
hands, for example, may not be ergonomically effective for the tasks required
in Asia. The Kentucky Fried Chicken that is finger lickin' good in Syracuse
has to be altered for the palates of Singapore. This concept applies up and
down the corporate value chain from product design, to manufacturing, to sales
and service. Asians will not necessarily shop at distant Mega marts just because
they have the financial wherewithal. They prefer fresh food. In addition, they
often do not have the space to store a week's food supply in smaller apartments
and the longer walk to the larger but more distant central markets may be prohibitive when it's required several times per week.
Cultures have developed over extended period of times. They are not easily
altered by corporations in pursuit of scale. For a time, unique product feature
can provide for temporary success. However, whatever new technology or
know-how is brought to bear, it can be duplicated either exactly or in parallel.
If multinationals will not adapt modern expertise to local preference, someone
else will step forward, as long as a significant number of prospective customers
are available. Emerging markets have the numbers to create that market power.
Successful corporations tackle emerging markets by evolving their approach
as penetration increases. They first build scale, skimming the markets, and developing a profile of local preferences and conditions. A considered presence
on the ground is then established complete with new products adapted specially
for local customers. A great example is the approach of air conditioning companies who entered the Asian market with large centralized units designed to accommodate the broad spaces of western construction. After landscaping customer preferences for the economies of individual control and tighter building
spaces, a complete line of asianized products were developed which were extremely compact and allowed room by room temperature management. Further,
there may be more than one culture, more than one set of local preferences, in
the same country. In fact, the customers of Beijing do not utilize the same types
of air conditioning units as those in Shanghai. Localization can be quite specific
because the major city populations throughout the emerging markets have the
numbers to enforce their specific preferences.
This adaptive strategy, however, is less easily embraced than it might appear.
Visions of geometric profit growth must be abandoned, potentially counter to
the quarter over quarter growth necessary to a publically-traded enterprise.
Creating presence clearly requires investment in new domestically-driven product, local people to sell or distribute and a network to service them directly.

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New factories are required to meet short lead times and to match local cost
requirements. Engineering often has to be established in region, for better
matching products and processes to local conditions. This is a significant effort
requiring that resources be redirected from existing positions. In effect, corporations must place a piece of themselves in a distant land. Financial, intellectual
and physical capability must relocate to new territory if a lasting position is to
be expected. It's often a struggle for corporations that view their cultures tied to
their base country or countries. Further, the transition from scale to presence, as
an emerging market objective is a difficult one for the corporate organization.
Powerful internal interests responsible for the existing investments tend to
lobby for continued access to the new markets. The economics of presence has
a longer payback. The returns are smaller than the attractive but illusory benefits that, theoretically, would be available if scale economies could be extended
by imposing sameness.
The transition from a scale to a presence approach can be seen externally in
how the corporations use the term global. At first, public statements will reveal that global means selling into the local market by lobbing product in from
an established base. As the approach evolves, global means that it will sell and
manufacture locally, but the intellectual property, i. e., systems, administrative
protocols and designs are developed at home. And, finally, as it recognizes the
need for presence, global refers to a full-fledged part of the corporation's
activity from design, to production, to service being physically located in country.
Building physical presence can indeed be difficult because it represents migration to a less familiar, more-difficult-to-manage situation. In addition, significant internal interests have a bias for opposition: First, as previously discussed,
those who are responsible for existing investments and second, those whose
focus it is to make the organism simpler and easier to control often see unique
presence around the world as counter to their goals. In the end, however, it
becomes clear that unless a corporation establishes real presence in the China,
India, Russia and other emerging markets, someone else will. Then, it will be
forced to play investment catch up or wither commercially, perhaps even relegating itself to a smaller player on the worldwide stage. So, the first challenge
of a corporation is to choose between the short-term benefits of large scale or
the more permanent position associated with developing a presence, close and
fully adapted to the local market. If the organization aims to be a long-term
participant in emerging economies, it must choose presence, but it's a wrenching experience. As multinationals pass through that transition, additional
choices visit themselves on the organization's culture.

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VIII. Imperial or Federal? How to Add Value?


Having made the choice to establish presence, additional challenges arise.
The most obvious is organizing the network of legal and operating organisms
that are the hallmark of sustained corporate globalization. Should the network
be of an imperial or federal nature? How much of the central organization
needs to be imprinted on the local subsidiary to add unique value? Indeed,
what characteristics comprise the essence of a corporation's identity? For example, a corporation would maintain its ethical code everywhere, and possibly
choose to hold its position as a premium brand. All other aspects of approach
would be open to adaptation. This is one of the questions which confront all
multinationals themselves on the path to globalization.
The strong natural tendency is to create an imperial organization, where major decisions are made at the center. Policies from brand position, to cash management, to compensation, to labor relations are based on the approach with
which the parent headquarters is comfortable. Local requirements and efficiencies are taken into account, but the needs of the corporate center generally are
ascendant. This imperial approach generally puts a premium on systematic
congruency. Activities can then be summarized for command, control and external articulation. For example, if all the operations utilize a particular salary
grade structure, it makes administration easier and lubricates inter-site transfers.
Local customers and cultures are considered but the natural tendency is toward
standardization in this and many other areas. It's a natural bias convenient to
the center but restrictive to local activities.
The alternative to a corporate imperium can be characterized as a federation
of legal and operating companies. Coordination and consistency are the goals as
opposed to congruency. An organization which has been succeeding by the excellence of its designs in its mother country would emphasize the same approach everywhere. An enterprise, which positioned itself as the premium brand
at home, would be top-of-the-line in every jurisdiction. These characteristics are
part of company's DNA. They define the very nature of the organization and
how it adds value to customers. Mercedes, for example, is positioned as a luxury car in Germany and Asia. It does not seek to be a people's car in any location. McDonald's focuses on fast food everywhere. It does not cater anniversary
dinners in any jurisdiction. Beyond basic consistencies, however, the federal
approach leaves other issues to the local entity, following the dictates of the
particular on-the-ground culture. For example, most western companies now
have a compensation structure which is based primarily on a fixed annual salary with a standard benefit's package including healthcare and insurance. Annual performance bonuses are generally restricted to a relatively small group of
management excepting those commission-based payments utilized in sales
forces. Asian compensation structures, on the other hand, tend to have year-end

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performance bonuses throughout the organization. Compensation can vary


widely depending on an organization's annual profitability, sometimes reaching
an increase of 3040% over the prior year. This reflects the typical Asian relationship where the financial interest of corporation and the individual are more
closely aligned. It shares corporate success in a direct way and allows for cost
control in years when performance is below norm, helping avoid layoffs when
times are tough. Again, the Imperial approach seems natural in the beginning of
a multinational expansion. It's reasonably effective to install the protocols for
launching new operations. As the local activity builds, however, centrifugal attraction builds and the organization naturally is pulled toward a federal approach, consistent with the natural preference.
The balance between imperial and federal is not an easy one. It questions the
very nature of the organization. The trick is knowing how far to go. As discussed previously, it's best for a long-term presence to tailor the business approach to local preferences. However, the advantage a multinational brings to
any distant market is the strength developed in other geographies. If this is not
the case, the global network adds no value and having the multinational subsidiaries have no advantage compared with independent local operation. Corporate networks must balance a federal and imperial consideration to create advantage. The trick is know-how to strike that balance. If in Asia, United's crew
focuses on service rather than on customer safety, is the local operation still
part of the Friendly Skies? If Honda in the U.S. has management offices instead of open bays, is it still part of Honda? If the French supermarket, Carrefour, delivers its groceries in Asia, can it truly be part of Carrefour network? If
Snap-on does not deliver via the company's trademark vans, is it really a Snapon company? If Wal-Mart abandons its do-it-yourself character in China, where
self-repair is not popular, can it still be part of Sam Walton's world?
The answer is yes to all these questions. All global organizations are part
Imperial and, at the same time, part federal. The tough task, in fact, is striking
the proper balance. Caught between the Scylla of too much localization and the
Charybdis of too much centralization, multinational corporations are forced to
choose which parts of their characteristics and policies are truly essential to
their existence and hold on to it . . . everywhere. Then, it can adopt other aspects of its model to what works best locally. For example, Snap-on's core is
the extraordinary quality of its tools. The vans are not central to its success.
They only represent the delivery mechanism that works in selected geographies.
This tradeoff is faced only rarely by operations that are concentrated in their
mother countries, and have not regularly encountered the centrifugal pressures
of multiple cultures. It is, however, a challenge commonly confronting international entities. It requires decisions on the very nature of the corporation's own
culture and how it chooses to add value as participants in emerging markets.

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There are other globalization driven choices which emanate from the role of
the corporation in society. The concepts vary from location to location, but the
central question is: How is the social organism called a Corporation expected to
fit in the economic, political and social landscape? Two difficult choices, which
seem to confront business executives interfacing between the developed West
and the emerging East is: individual or community, and capital or labor.
IX. Individual or Community? What is the Social Contract?
Eventually, multinationals must consider the long-term nature of the social
contract between the corporation and its employees, especially in Asia. Does it
strike that agreement with the individual, seeking to succeed by mobilizing independent creative effort? Does it maintain a discrete separation between personal and business life? Alternatively, does it emphasize the community? A corporation in any locality is, after all, a kind of community of employees working
toward creating both mutual and individual prosperity. Asian business establishes
its social contract with the community as the primary participant. The agreement is based on collective action, group performance and trust and loyalty
among employees that are both colleagues and friends. As Amy Chua says,
the fundamental difference between western . . . and East Asian concepts is
that eastern societies believe that the individual exists in the context of the
family. He is not pristine and separate.7 Should a multinational operating in
Asia adopt that collective form or should it remain focused on relationship with
individuals?
The emphasis on the individual rather than the community represents one of
the biggest differences among cultures. Bridging this difference is one of the
primary challenges for leaders of business multinationals. Americans, for example, believe the best way to proceed is through individual creativity, pursuing
somewhat random interests that will, by the power of an invisible hand, lead to
success. Programs, such as, Six Sigma, Lean, and TQI are installed. They aim
to polish the organization, creating improvement with the Brownian-motion-like
efforts of individuals acting in the interstices of the organization. This mode
puts great reliance on individuals to work independently or in small, often disconnected groups. This approach is embraced widely and wielded with considerable success in the United States. Winning via individual effort is part of the
American blueprint for national achievement, reminiscence of John Page's letter
to Thomas Jefferson referring to the Angel in the Whirlwind i. e., a blizzard
of individual actions guiding the United States to ascendancy. To American
managers, schooled with an almost algorithmic devotion to Lockean ideals, it's
difficult to see the world in any other way.
7

Amy Chua, World On Fire, Doubleday & Company, Inc., 2002, p. 262.

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Other cultures, however, tend to put a priority on collective action. The difference can play out in several ways. One is the approach to change. In Japan,
for example, Brownian change encounters opposition and, in the end, may not
be useful. Japanese business people tend to resist these changes in a number of
ways, including delay, debate and outright refusal. It regularly puzzles American managers who cannot understand why Japanese executives fail to see the
obvious values of these logical changes that could quickly improve the situation. I know because I have been among the puzzled. The reluctance, however,
makes eminent sense. In Japan, functionality depends to a great extent on interlocking coordination of effort. The country's celebrated efficiency reflects the
power of that coordination on every level. Change in one area, therefore, ripples well beyond the initial locus of action generating unintended and perhaps
unfavorable consequences. In Japan, appropriate conduct puts a premium on
consistency and extreme coordination. No wonder that Japanese business proceeds only on the basis of broadly connected actions and, only after much
study and coordination. This is particularly difficult for western managers to
accept and leads often to frustration and ineffectiveness. It represents a major
challenge for all foreigners seeking to be active in that country and has led to
some difficult relations between Japanese subsidiaries and other elements of a
multinational network. In the end, however, the angst not withstanding, it's impossible to be successful in Japan without adopting some measure of a communitarian and coordinated approach. The society simply is not structured to easily
embrace the alternative.
Beyond Japan, Asian culture can also differ at the personal level. For example, companies regularly have year-end celebrations to mark annual success.
These sometimes are scheduled, with spouses, on what might be considered
private individual holidays, such as New Year's Eve. Western companies operating in Asia might discourage this timing. It just seems wrong, representing an
intrusion on the individual's personal life. New Year's Eve should be reserved
for time with one's closest friends. To an Asian, however, it can represent a
celebration of community. It's an opportunity to spend a special evening, with
your friends, i. e., the members of a community called a corporation. It's a relatively trivial example, but it speaks volumes about the inherent challenges of
confronting the fundamental differences between individual and community
orientation in the workplace.
Businesses cannot reorder the priorities between community and the individual. They cannot alter the behaviors that are inherent in those differences. The
concepts are hard wired into local minds, as algorithms governing right and
wrong. Initially, western managers tend to structure social contracts that emphasize the individual and ignore the community aspects of business, believing that
national behavior can be converted to the parent company's norm. Employees,
however, are not simple Cartesian entities. They do not follow corporate direc-

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tion in a predictable linear manner, especially if such pressure is contrary to


their base culture. If corporations seek to motivate and provide an atmosphere
in which employees can be comfortable and excel, they must broaden their social contract to encompass local preferences. To be successful in reaching
groups of many cultures, a corporation must broaden and, in effect, alter the
organization's DNA to become comfortable with both individual and communitarian approaches to the employee-corporate relationship.
X. Labor or Capital? What Role to Play?
The role of corporations in society is another dimension which challenges the
multinational in operating across borders. The western approach is to deploy
financial investment and conduct operations aimed at providing a strong return.
Said another way, the role of a corporation in the West is to optimize the use of
capital. Investment is viewed as the most important resource. Other items, including labor, can be considered important but are secondary by comparison.
As a practical matter, reductions in the work force often are required to achieve
the targeted returns and the resultant cutbacks tend to deplete employee skills
and capabilities. The associated impact on human resources usually is well recognized by informed leadership. People are, however, viewed as replaceable
over time because skilled employees are relatively available in the developed
world. In the end, society does expect corporations to consider some measure
of employee interests but efficient use of the capital is almost always the first
priority.
In other geographies, however, business optimizes labor. Capital is vital but
secondary. Particularly in Asia, society expects corporations to provide relatively stable employment. This can seem to be reactionary thinking when
viewed through a lens forged by western business models. In an emerging market, however, substantial energy is focused in raising employees to the levels of
capability required to design, manufacture, sell or administer consistent with a
modern operation. Given the development effort, it makes sense to conserve the
work force as the highest priority.
The difference in approach reflects the local environment. In America, disenfranchised workers certainly can have difficulty. Without minimizing the pain
of changing jobs, however, relocation to another more economically robust locale is usually an option. Further, the move does not require learning a new
language or adopting a new culture, as it could in some of the emerging markets.
In Europe, however, the distinct culture/language/economic spheres are
somewhat smaller and consequently offer narrower relocation options. As you
might expect, conventional business practice and labor law, reflect the implica-

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tions of this difference. Managers with portfolios on both sides of the Atlantic
are challenged to accommodate both approaches within the same corporate cultures. Spain, for example, is relatively restrictive on sizing the workforce.
France, Germany, Sweden and the UK have varying degrees of increased flexibility. All, however, have regulatory requirements which channel business into
conserving labor as a critical resource.
In emerging markets, China, India, and Eastern Europe, there also are restrictions on employee retrenchment, though not as prohibitive as in Western
Europe. The greatest factor, however, is the expectations of the workforce itself. In that growth environment, potential employees expect a corporation to
train, nurture, and maintain a capable team, through all but the most cataclysmic of business cycles. People are retrenched, but only as a last resort after all
alternatives have been explored. If a company does venture into retrenchment,
it is subject to the disapproval of government, and, much more importantly, it
can lose the confidence of customers and potential employees. Asian business
partners of all varieties question the reliability of companies which do not conserve human resources. The emerging landscape is littered with companies that
have downsized drastically in bad times. They often have had to pay substantial premiums, or failed miserably trying to re-enter when the all clear had
sounded.
A graphic example can be seen in the 1989 China environment and the Carrier Corporation's navigation of the turbulent events during that period. It was
the year of Tiananmen and business activity dropped abruptly in the confrontation's aftermath. Many American and European companies put their China business on hold, restricting the flow of capital, technology, and visitors to that
country. The Carrier team, however, returned almost immediately following the
crisis, motivated by an interest in their local people. More than a thousand Chinese employees had aligned their future with the Carrier business. Given the
expected role of the corporation in China, it would have been unwise and,
possibly, disastrous to have left their future uncertain. The quick return was a
visible reaffirmation of corporate commitment. The pay-off was extraordinary.
In subsequent years, those same employees propelled the local operation to be
among the most successful in all of China and, by some measures, in the entire
world.
Fulfilling varying roles from place-to-place is a substantial multinational
challenge. The basis for evaluating performance, the role of employee training,
the structure of compensation, and the pursuit of strategic goals are all greatly
affected by the way the operation sees its role in society. There are also significant implications for a corporation's public and internal rhetoric. To be successful, multinationals must understand the range of roles required from region to
region, and develop a comfort with playing their designated part, wherever they

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do business. It's an exercise which requires organizations to alter their selfimage in very basic ways and often can be quite a struggle for even the most
seasoned management team.
XI. Conversion or Absorption? What Process in Expansion?
Perhaps the most intriguing question for the would-be multinationals is the
mechanism by which growth will be achieved: conversion or absorption. In
general, corporations have been trained to relentlessly define their business
models, i. e., how they create value. The companies of Western Europe and
the U.S. have usually followed their home-country as the blueprint to success.
This is a kind of economic play-out of the American folk saying, dance with
the girl that brought you. In other words, utilize the approach that has generated your success. In extending to other jurisdictions, this means converting
employees and organizations to some subset of your corporate standard, instead
of an array more natural to their local culture. Inherently, this process pursues
expansion as a one-way exercise. It moves the standard culture of a corporation
into a subsidiary to as great an extent as is possible, given the limits imposed
by local preference discussed above.
Expansion by absorption is an alternative which can be more effective but
brings increased difficulty in execution. Instead of seeking only to convert distant operations to the culture and mechanisms of the mother company, a corporation can absorb some of the practices natural to the newly-added environment. This can result in a substantially stronger organization fortified by some
of the best practices native to its various business environments. For example,
western companies have had success in absorbing the concept of quality circles
that is such an integral aspect of Japanese business culture. In so doing, companies emulate religions like Hinduism or Buddhism, which over the years have
extended reach by adopting the practices of new groups absorbed into their
sphere of influence.
Of course, the challenge is to overcome the urge to pursue conversion and,
passing that, determine the appropriate balance between conversion and absorption. If the corporation fails to convert in some way, passing at least a part of
its culture and business model to a new environment, it offers little that cannot
already be found locally. On the other hand, failing to absorb some of the
more valuable aspects of the local business culture, it may miss great opportunities for improvement by irrigation. The cultures of new markets are too
valuable to miss. Adopting approaches like total quality control from Japan or
collective compensation from China can provide great strength to the multinational whole. It also gives the people of the periphery a greater sense of
participation in governance of the worldwide operation. Expansion by absorption, however, requires that a multinational alter its own central culture in

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ways it might have deemed unthinkable before expansion. Experienced companies tend to overcome, however, and pursue the advantages of these diverse
cultures with vigor.
XII. What are the Limits of Ownership?
As the corporate identity is spread over more nationalities, it becomes clear
that equity ownership can be illusory. In the early stages, emerging market governments, generally require that foreign investors partner with local business to
form a joint venture. The rules vary from country to country and from time to
time, reflecting limits on foreign equity ownership and scope of activity. In any
case, however, the local team's influence over multinationals is much larger
than might be apparent from straightforward ownership rights. This is true
whether the local entity is a joint venture or wholly owned subsidiary.
Joint ventures require substantial compromise in accommodating the wishes
and the interests of the local partners, even in the instances where the international investor holds majority share and managerial rights. Dividends, personnel
policy, customer relations often are locally driven and all tend to be heavily
influenced by the partner. Occasionally, these preferences are not aligned with
those of the multinationals. Often, the partner's position prevails despite representing the minority opinion. Cursory inspections may imply that the compromises are the result of statutory minority rights. A more thoughtful examination, however, usually reveals that the compromises reflect a need to keep local
players enlisted in the venture's success. Multinationals, when entering China,
India or Russia, are like Robert Heinlein's character, a stranger in a strange
land. They sorely need the savvy, contacts, and cooperation of a local presence.
Such compromises can cause consternation in the boardrooms of the developed world. Large corporations are used to getting their way in almost any
situation, but especially in matters of business policy relating to their own operations. The history of such relationships can be turbulent and lead to dissolution. General Motors, for example, withdrew from its joint venture with
Daewoo in Korea over disputes regarding the product strategy and the need to
localize design. General Electric had similar experiences with its motor business in the same country. There are a number of other examples which did not
lead to outright dissolution but caused substantial financial and operating heartburn over what were essentially a clash of cultures.
Today, many of the legal requirements for a local partner have been eliminated. In China and India, foreign investors can now initiate fully-owned operations. Despite the more liberal equity environment, however, the situation has
not changed substantially in a practical way. Western corporations are still
strangers in a strange land. To succeed, they still need a local savvy and presence. If it's not accessed via a partner, it must be achieved by adding capable,

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Cultural Challenges Facing Multinational Corporations

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strong and eminent local management. This cadre eventually become the agents
of localization. Under their influence and, sometimes insistence, the same kinds
of compromises can be imposed on the multinationals that arise in a partner
relationship. Of course, the local executives do serve at the pleasure of the parent. They cannot, however, be replaced without disruption. Further, the changes
are unlikely to liquidate cultural conflicts because they are driven not by personality but by the inexorable aspects of the local environment. In other words,
whether the investment is via a joint venture or is 100% owned, local interests
will have a significant influence on any in-country operation. The experienced
and successful multinational recognizes these limits and follows a policy of
never imposing their will via majority rights in a venture and, in the case of
wholly owned operations, of listening very carefully to the guidance of local
leaders. The fact is that, if the operation is to be successful, corporations must
recognize the limits of their control in international markets.
XIII. Whose Company is it Anyway?
Probably the most difficult and, perhaps, the most controversial question is:
Whose company is this? This is posed in the broadest sense, i. e., what group
can claim the multinational as its own? The recent controversy over locating
legal headquarters in the Caribbean tax havens, not withstanding, most major
corporations like IBM, Ford, and United Technologies still view themselves as
American companies. In each of these cases, however, growth in international
markets have carried sales and employment for subsidiaries outside the U.S. to
levels that rival those of the mother company. As this expansion continues, it
poses the question: When an American company employs more Chinese or Indians or Eastern Europeans than it does Americans, is it still an American company? In the limit, it may not be. At first, an emerging subsidiary is like a
colony. The mother organization provides the seeds of technology, finance, and
intellectual capital. Eventually, however, the local market expands and broad
localization becomes inevitable. The in-country enterprise develops its own special resources and unique expertise, which may be useful to other parts of the
global federation. The flow of support from the parent to the subsidiary reverses. The parent starts to depend more on the subsidiary than the subsidiary
depends on the parent. In fact, it's easy to see Japanese divisions of western
companies in this position today. It won't be long until Chinese and Indian
organizations evolve to the same situation, and their importance will be amplified by the power of over one billion customers in each market.
Such strength authors a level of influence that looks a lot like ideological
ownership. This should not be a surprise. American companies pursue diversity
goals to insure that the interests of minority groups spread throughout the
U.S. are aligned with those of the corporation. It has proved to be a difficult

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task for many organizations requiring substantial effort. Expanding the perspective using an international lens, it's similarly clear that a wholly western management cannot easily lead an organization with large, contiguous employee
bases in various emerging markets. These groups sometimes out-number the
westerners, are physically located in a distant environment, belong to different
cultures, and tend to view the corporation through a local rather than western
lens. It's a diversity challenge of intense difficulty. A corporation must dedicate
substantial effort to enlist these diverse constituencies in its collective quest.
As multinationals expand, therefore, they are forced to incorporate ideas and
interests of their now largest group of employees and customers. Local majorities in China or India, enabled by numbers, by technical strength, and by financial leverage, can wrench ideological control from the hands of the parent organization. To maintain their collective value, corporations must work to keep the
direction of their global networks aligned to the moving center of corporate
gravity. It will take extraordinary compromises, affecting the makeup of management, location of the headquarters, sourcing of funds, and the prioritization
of resources. For example, as the employees and customers of Asia become a
major portion of the corporate whole, can the network be effectively managed
by a headquarters in the Eastern U.S., which has no overlapping working hours
with China? Further, can such a multinational be led by a team which has no
Asian representation at the top level? In the end, the march of globalization
will make local culture more resilient and more powerful than ever before. It
will mandate that successful corporations change some of their most basic elements to accommodate and enlist the powerful new constituencies that are
formed in the pursuit of globalization.
XIV. Conclusion
The management gurus are right. The world is indeed changing. The mix of
improving technology, emerging economies, ambitious governments and aggressive corporations are altering lifestyles, and affecting cultures in some of the
world's largest nations. Corporations that aspire to continuing world prominence must act aggressively to capture the opportunities afforded by changing
markets like China and India. Governments assist and multinationals pursue,
attracted by the promise of scale economies and learning curve advantages.
Modernization does author change, bringing technology and choice to societies
everywhere. There is legitimate concern that national cultures will be marginalized in the migration to a market-based commonality. Corporations are
would-be agents of that congruency but their unfettered impact is limited to a
niche, representing a special group of leading edge consumers. As economies
continue emerging, national preferences, amplified by numbers, will force adaptation to local requirements despite the corporate drive to sameness. Multina-

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tionals will develop global reach but that extension will be checked by the
power and resiliency of local culture. Pursuit of new markets will require corporations to face difficult questions regarding commitment, value, role, process
and the very ownership of their agendas. Globalization, in fact, presents less
risk to national identity than it raises for the culture of the multinational itself.
Corporations, as we go forward to a global world, will be quite challenged to
achieve the leadership promised by emerging markets, maintain their advantage
in size and experience and manage, without major disruption, the multi-culture
existence required by the realities of the 21st century.
A businessperson is regularly confronted with a wide array of data on which
to judge situations. Those inputs, however, are often divergent and have varying
relevance to the question at hand. The apparent facts almost never define a
clear path of action. Decision under uncertainty is an everyday process for business. So it is with globalization. It's not fully clear where the process is headed.
Indeed, the facts may lead others to an alternate view. With regard to this paper, however, I believe there are sufficient data to confirm the environment outlined, raise the questions identified, suggest the directions proposed and reasonably support the conclusions drawn.
Summary
Corporations are increasingly challenged by participating in the massive new markets emerging as part of expanding globalization. There is a view that business is
driving national economies into a global commonality, marginalizing indigenous cultures in the process. Reality, however, is somewhat different. Local preference bends
globalization, forcing adaptation of business operations to individual cultures. To participate fully in the emerging economies and maintain global prominence, corporations must alter their products, processes, styles, and values to match the varying landscape. It represents a substantial challenge that must be managed by any organization
that aspires to world leadership in the new century.

Zusammenfassung
Die Unternehmen, die im Zuge der sich ausbreitenden Globalisierung auf den neuen
Mrkten ttig sind, fhlen sich zunehmend herausgefordert. Es gibt die Sichtweise,
wonach die Wirtschaft vom nationalen in einen globalen Rahmen hineinsteuere und
dabei die bodenstndige Kultur allmhlich marginalisiert werde. Die Wirklichkeit ist
jedoch anders. Die rtlichen Prferenzen zwingen die Unternehmen zur Anpassung
der Geschftspraktiken an die bestehenden Verhltnisse. Die Unternehmen, die in den
sich entwickelnden Wirtschaften dabeisein und eine weltweite Stellung behaupten wollen, mssen ihre Produkte, ihre Produktionsweisen, ihr Vorgehen und auch die Wertmastbe so anpassen, da sie den unterschiedlichen Verhltnissen Rechnung tragen.
Es handelt sich um eine substantielle Herausforderung, die von jeder Organisation, die
in der Welt eine fhrende Rolle im neuen Jahrhundert spielen will, bewltigt werden
mu.

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Globalisation and Poverty what do we know?


By Jrg Althammer
Globalisation is a controversial issue that has acquired considerable emotive force. According to radical critics of globalisation1, economic integration
deepens the gap between rich and poor countries and deters developing countries from economic progress by holding them in a debt-trap. Thus, globalisation
may even undermine democratic institutions and cultural diversity. But even if
one does not go as far as this in ones criticism of globalisation, there seems to
be an opinion that the exposing of domestic industries to international competition is likely to be damaging. Almost every political leader blames globalisation for sluggish domestic growth, the loss of employment or the need to reshape the system of social protection.
From an economic point of view, this hostile attitude towards free international trade is somewhat surprising. For most economists, trade liberalisation is
a key element to foster economic growth and lift living standards in both developed and developing countries. That free international trade accelerates development to the benefit of all is one of the most widely held beliefs in the economic profession (Dollar/Kraay 2004). Obviously, mainstream economic theory
is not in line with common believes. These differences between the economics
profession on the one hand side and public opinion on the other may be due to
deficiencies in standard economic thinking or to erroneous receptions of the
benefits of free trade by the public2. This paper summarizes the empirical evidence on globalisation and its impact on poverty and inequality. It is organized
as follows: Chapter I defines the central analytical concepts, Chapter II summarizes the main findings on globalisation, growth and poverty. In a first step,
the empirical evidence of trade liberalisation on growth is sketched. Secondly,
the impact of international trade on poverty is reviewed both from an international and a domestic point of view. The last section summarizes the conclusions.
1 See e. g. Hertz (2003) or the statements made by the ATTAC group. ATTAC
stands for association pour l'introduction d'un taxe tobinesque, thus the original goal
was to foster the introduction of a Tobin tax levied on international financial transactions. Meanwhile, ATTAC has turned out to be one of the most influential nongovernmental organisations in the anti-globalisation movement.
2 Cf. Schmidt (2004) or Donges et al. (2003) for further details.

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I. Basic Concepts
1. What does Globalisation mean?

In general, the term globalisation refers to the process of deepening the international division of labour. The most evident signs for the increasing integration of national economies are rising volumes of internationally traded goods
and services and an increasing mobility of physical as well as financial capital
and labour. This process is driven by the liberalisation of trade and capital
flows and a technology driven reduction of costs of transportation and communication. Thus, globalisation is primarily an economic phenomenon, its prerequisites, however, are mainly driven by political factors.
Globalisation is anything but new. The expolitation of mutual gains from
trade and differentials in factor endowments have always been a great stimulus
to override political and natural barriers. Economic history shows, that at the
end of the 19th century international economic collaboration, measured in terms
of trade volumes relative to gross national product, was at todays levels. Historically the two world wars drastically reduced international trade volumes
bringing international economic transactions almost to a standstill. At the end
of the 1940s, industrialised countries were at the verge of self-sufficiency. By
and large, what has come to be known as globalisation between industrialised
countries is mainly a restitution of previous levels of economic integration and
can be seen as a sign of international political stability. In some areas we can
even find first signs of de-globalisation. Take, for example, the labour market
in Western Europe. Although all barriers to free mobility of labour have fallen
between the EU member states, cross border mobility of labour has fallen remarkably in the last decades and has currently come to a near stand-still3.
Finally, trade liberalisation and the integration of national economies in the
international division of labour are not simply a current reality or, as economists would call it, an exogenous shock, that society has to accept. Quite the
contrary, globalisation is a result of deliberate choice and political action. Political measures to reduce taxes, tariffs and import quotas commenced right after
WWII with the General agreement on trade and tariffs (GATT) in 1947. Yet
at its very beginning, the primary goals were to foster international economic
cohesion, to stabilize the international relations and to raise living conditions in
all member countries. The primary objectives of these trade negotiations, i. e.
the abolishment of trade barriers by reducing tariffs and non-tariffs measures,
were taken over by GATT's successor, the World Trade Organisation (WTO).
In some regions, the political action of economic integration went even further
3 This holds true for the last two decades. Things can change rapidly due to the
integration of Central European countries in the years to come.

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Globalisation and Poverty what do we know?

271

than that. Examples are the North American Free Trade Zone (NAFTA), the
latin-american MERCOSUR, and the economic communities of the West- and
South-African states (ECOWAS and SADC). The most outstanding example is,
of course, the European Union (EU). The EU has already introduced full economic freedom (i. e. free mobility of capital, labour and services). Some of its
members have adopted a shared single European currency, thus giving away the
national authority on monetary and to some extent fiscal policy. The antiglobalisation movement conceives itself to a certain degree to be anti-capitalist
as well. It is therefor worth mentioning, that the anti-capitalistic states of the
former eastern block also tried to establish a multinational economic system
(the so called COMECON).
All these examples show, that what has come to be known as globalisation
is the outcome of deliberate political action and arbitration. As such, globalisation is open to political gesture as well. Thus, national economies are also free
not to participate in international trade. By doing so, the non-globalising economies exclude themselves from the economic benefits of free international trade
and the productivity gains from specialisation.
2. Poverty a Dazzling Concept

The concept of poverty is just as unclear as the term globalisation. A


common understanding of being poor means having insufficient funds to
cover the basic human needs such as nutrition, clothing, housing etc. In a
broader definition one could add not having the means that are necessary for
participating in societies' economic, political and cultural life4. Both definitions
are conceptions of so called absolute poverty. With respect to the first definition, we refer to the physical subsistence base-line, with respect to the second
we speak of the socio-cultural subsistence base-line. Poverty in this definition is
measured by some minimum income level such as the 1 or 2 dollar threshold.
The extremely poor are those, who have less than 1 or 2 dollar a day on-hand,
measured in local purchasing power parity. Another indicator that has proved to
be extremely meaningful in empirical research is the infant mortality rate. However, absolute poverty can be measured in a broader sense as well. For instance,
the United Nations' Human Development Index (HDI) tries to capture a variety
of living conditions. Besides per capita income, this index includes the average
life expectancy and educational attainment, measured by school enrolment and
illiteracy rates. This index is then normalized in the range between zero and
one. The HDI is about 0.45 for the less developed countries and 0.9 for the
OECD.
4 This broader concept underlies the German social assistance programme (Sozialhilfe).

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Academic research and state institutions focus on a completely different conception of deprivation, called relative poverty. According to this concept of
poverty, being poor means to be excluded from societies' average living conditions.5 For instance, the European Community, as declared in its Nizza Treaty
(to combat poverty and social exclusion), regards those as poor whose income is less than 60% of average national per capita income. The most widely
used measures of relative poverty are the indicators of dispersion such as the
Gini-coefficient or the 50% and 60% threshold mentioned above. Relative poverty is, however, a most controversial concept. It gives information on the dispersion of the indicator under consideration, but not on the absolute level of
living standards. Taken as an indicator of poverty, statistical measures of income variance can be highly misleading. Take as an example two societies, A
and B, one with low average income but a fairly equal income distribution (A),
the other with a high average income and a highly unequal distribution (B).
According to the concept of relative poverty, poverty rates in society B are
higher than in society A, although the absolute income of the worst-off in society B might be higher than in society A. That this is not only academic reasoning can be shown by applying the concept of relative income poverty to
East and West Germany. Poverty measures based on average incomes in East
and West Germany seems to be higher in the West than in the East, as East
Germany still has a flatter income distribution. However, things change completely as soon as incomes are measured relative to Germany as a whole. Now,
poverty is more widespread in East Germany, as wages are still lower in East
Germany compared to the West. Furthermore, by using a relative poverty concept, there will always be some kind of poverty irrespective of a societies'
well being as a whole. So one should take seriously Hayek's criticism that
showed the concept of relative poverty to be completely irrelevant. In any case,
the caveats of this concept must be kept in mind.
II. Globalisation and Poverty: The Empirical Evidence
1. Globalisation and Economic Growth

a) Theoretical Considerations
As noted above, classical economic theory predicts a positive relationship
between economic welfare and international economic integration, mainly due
to the exploitation of comparative advantages in production. Furthermore, if
one assumes imperfect product markets, international competition will erode
5 From the definition of the socio-cultural subsistence minimum given above, it
should be clear, that the distinction between relative poverty and the socio-cultural
poverty line is not clear-cut. The measures are, however, conceptually different.

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273

monopolistic structures and thus maximise the social surplus. Note, however,
that economic theory postulates a causal connection between economic openness and the level of economic activity, but not with growth rates. Theoretically, positive impacts of globalisation on economic growth are a temporary
phenomenon. In practice, the adaptation process may extend to more than a
decade, thus a correlation between economic growth and openness may arise in
applied work.
The main deficiency of neoclassical growth theory is the fact, that neoclassical models are incapable of explaining the predominant power that drives economic growth: technological progress. This led to the formulation of a new
branch in growth theory some two decades ago. The primary goal of these so
called new or endogenous growth theories is to incorporate the process of
technological knowledge accumulation in a model of economic growth. In these
models, the relationship between per capita growth and globalisation is not as
clear cut as it is in the traditional setup. For instance, developing countries may
benefit from international trade by technological spill-overs. Foreign commerce,
via the distribution of new products and enhanced methods of production, leads
to a diffusion of new technologies, thus enhancing productivity and growth in
less industrialised countries. According to this argument, a long term causal
relationship between per capita growth and international trade is theoretically
possible. However, countervailing effects might also be expected. The import
of technologically superior industrial goods may crowd out domestic productive
kernels, thus suppressing the emergence of self-contained innovation in developing countries. The positive effect of globalisation on growth is theoretically
indetermined and the interventionalist argument of protecting infant industries
may find a theoretical basis in modern economic theory.
Besides these theoretical complexities, estimating the impact of openness on
growth causes severe methodological difficulties (Winters 2003, 2004; Winters
et al. 2004). Firstly, there is the operational definition of economic openness.
From a policy-makers point of view, openness refers to a liberal trade regime
which would show up in low tariffs and minor non-tariff barriers. These direct
measures of economic openness usually do not provide significant results in
empirical research. This might be due to conceptual shortcomings6 or mere
measurement errors. Thus researchers have drawn their attention to more indirect measures of economic openness. Secondly, empirical estimates of the
effect of openness on growth give us a measure of correlation between the two
variables, but not of causality. Econometrics cannot confirm whether trade lib6 For instance, simple tariff averages underweight high tariff rates, because the corresponding import levels tend to be low. On the other hand, non-tariff coverage ratios
are not able to discriminate between barriers that are prohibitive and those that are
less effective.

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eralisation in fact causes economic growth, or whether successful economies are


more engaged in international trade. This is particularly problematic as soon as
trade ratios (the ratio of exports plus imports to GDP) are used in empirical
research, as both indicators in the denominator could be endogenous to growth.
Finally, successful trade liberalisation needs to be accommodated by other
growth enhancing policies, such as the installation of property rights, investment-enhancing policies, macroeconomic stability and the like. Thus, even if an
openness indicator should apperently yield insignificant results, this might be
due to factors other than trade liberalisation.
b) Empirical Evidence
Having these caveats and shortcomings in mind, it should come to no surprise that the empirical evidence on the relationship between openness and
growth is not conclusive. During the 90s, the conviction that trade liberalisation
was good for economic growth was fostered by a rich body of empirical evidence. Numerous studies showed, that openness has a direct impact on the average growth rate of an economy (see Dollar 1992, Sachs/Warner 1995, Edwards
1998, Frankel/Romer 1999). Jeffrey Sachs and Andrew Warner, for instance,
examined the trade policies of 117 countries between 1970 and 1989. They
found, that free trade countries realised growth rates that were between three
and six times higher than those of protectionist states. These findings have also
reached considerable reception in the public opinion (c.f. Norberg 2001).
However, these findings have received some criticism in recent years. Closer
investigations showed, that the static welfare effects of foreign trade turns out
to be of minor importance to industrialised countries. The picture changes if
one looks at developing countries. In these countries, rent-seeking behaviour is
wide-spread and the efficiency gains induced by exposing sheltered industries
to international competition are correspondingly high. According to a simulation by Rutherford/Tarr (2002), a reduction of tariff barriers from 20% to 10%
leads to an increase of average growth rates of some 0.5% over three decades.
These effects are even more pronounced, as soon as one takes the diffusion of
new technology into account. Several studies show a positive impact of imports
on domestic productivity (see e. g. Coe 1997, Ferriera/Rossi 2001, Jonsson/Subramanian 1999 and Lee 1996).
Quite naturally, these empirical findings have been disputet. Repetitive
studies using different indicators of economic openness or a different data set
question the level and the statistical significance of the coefficients. However,
up to my knowledge there is no empirical study reporting a statistically negative correlation between international trade, productivity and growth over a
longer period.

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2. Globalisation and Poverty

But even if we accept a positive relation between average per-capita income


and foreign trade, not too much can be said about the distribution of incomes
between rich and poor countries. One would, quite naturally, assume, that globalisation makes all participating countries better off. This is because entering
into international trade relations is a voluntary act by both partners. It will only
be accepted, as long as there is a benefit compared to self-sufficiency. This is
the typical win-win-situation every economist has in mind when talking about
globalisation. We can, however, not predict the distribution of the welfare gains
between, say, developed and developing countries. Theoretically, the distribution of the welfare gain depends on the bargaining power of the trading partners. If we assume the higher bargaining power lies within the industrialised
countries, then the bigger part of the welfare gains would accrue to these countries. However, the more trading partners are available and the more competitive international trade turns out to be, the more equally distributed the welfare
gains will be. As we do not have any a priori considerations on the competitiveness of international trade, it can not be ruled out, that the gains from trade
mainly accrue to industrialised countries, thus widening the gap between developed and developing nations.
There are mainly two lines of empirical research in this area. The first addresses the question from an aggregate point of view, i. e. analyses the impact
of globalisation on the dispersion of income per capita in an international context. These studies examine whether global inequality (i. e. the dispersion of
incomes between nations) has increased over a certain time span. The second
line of research concentrates on the dispersion of incomes within a nation, i. e.
these studies focus on the within-country inequality. In both cases, globalisation is simply grasped by the time span under consideration.
a) Poverty at an International Level
An important source for those who believe that the poverty gap has widened
during the last decades is the Human Development Report by the United Nations Development Programme, published in 1999. In this report, the ratio between the quintile of the world population living in the richest countries and the
income of those living in the poorest countries are compared. This ratio rose
from 30:1 in 1960 to 60:1 in 1990 and 72:1 in 1997. Thus, according to this
study, the gap between rich and poor has widened considerably during the last
50 years.
However, this study has several drawbacks and shortcomings (Dollar/Kraay
2002). Firstly, the UNDP study suffers one major conceptual drawback. In their
analysis, the UN researchers used the monetary Dollar value of national per

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capita income. However, for the purpose of analyzing international inequality,


one should use data that is adjusted for purchasing power differences. Such a
study has been carried out by the Norwegian Institute for International Affairs.
Using unadjusted data, the Gini-Coefficient of world income rose considerably
between 1980 and 1995 (from 0,69 to 0,76) and declined only faintly afterwards. And even this slight decline may be explained by the reduction of income in one of the richest countries (Japan). However, the results change dramatically as soon as one uses income data adjusted for purchasing power parity
(PPP). Then, the ineqality measure steadily declines with some minor fluctuations between 1965 and 1997. The same holds true for the income ratio between the richest and the poorest deciles of world population. Using unadjusted
data, this ratio rose from 48% (1980) to almost 70% in 1995. Adjusting incomes for purchasing power, the per capita income of the poorest fifth of world
population was about 550 US-$ (PPP) in 1965. By 1998, the income had more
than doubled (1.137 US-$). The income of the richest 20% increased by approximately 75%, from 8.315 to 14.623.
Furthermore, as noted above, the object of interest should not be the dispersion of incomes, but the actual and evolving living conditions of the poorest. If
we take a look at these figures, measured, e. g. by the human development index (HDI), the picture changes totally. In the OECD countries, the HDI rose
from 0.8 to 0.9. During the same time-period, developing countries experienced
an increase in the HDI from 0.26 to 0.56. Even the least developed countries
benefited in this period: the HDI more than doubled from 0.16 to 0.331.
b) Poverty at the Domestic Level
As comforting as these findings may be, they still don't fully address our
initial question on the impact of globalisation on the well-being of the poorest.
This is because even if the poorest countries benefit from globalisation as a
whole, it might well be that the increase of average incomes in the least developed countries is offset by an increase in domestic inequality. The common
belief, that growth is good for the poor, implicitly assumes these welfare
gains to be shared equally among all social groups. Let us again first have a
look at the theoretical arguments that can substantiate this common belief. In a
democracy, this assumption can be readily explained by the median voter
model. As the income distribution is skewed to the left, i. e. median income is
lower than mean income, politicians can maximise their votes by redistributing
incomes to the recipients of minor incomes. This model has been widely used
to explain the rise of government shares and distribution policies in democratic
systems and can elucidate the assumed impact of growth on poverty. In fact,
one would expect an over-proportionate increase in lower incomes as average
incomes raises, i. e. an elasticity of average income on per-capita income

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Globalisation and Poverty what do we know?

277

greater than one. However, this explanation holds true for mature democratic
systems only and might not be found in all developing countries. But redistributive policies can be useful to authoritarian systems as well. Non-democratic
governments have to spend resources to prevent social upheaval and to avoid
the risk of being overthrown. Distributive policies can thus be interpreted as a
peace-keeping premium to the underprivileged. One would also assume a positive effect of average income on the lowest income decile, but not necessarily
of same magnitude.
The empirical evidence in support of the common view seems to be overwhelming. In a series of papers, Dollar and Kraay investigate the effect of trade
liberalisation and growth on poverty, measured as per capita income of the bottom fifth in the income distribution. Their conclusion is quite simple: Growth
is good for the poor. Their cross-country estimates show an almost proportionate effect between average incomes and the incomes of the poor. These findings
have received considerable attention in the public debate. Globalisation raises
incomes, and the poor participated in full, the Economist concluded in May
2000. This might be some kind of over-interpretation, as these studies contain
no tests concerning functional form and structural stability of the model.
Furthermore, as in all empirical research, the data displayed several outliers.
That means that with a given level of average income, some countries are capable of effectively combatting poverty whilst others maintain above average
poverty rates. A detailed analysis of these outliers would be informative for
political purposes. Using this information, one might be able to find out examples for best practices in pro-poor policies.
III. Conclusion
Let me summarize the main arguments in five theses:
1. Globalisation is primarily an economic phenomenon, but its pre-requisites
are mainly political. Globalisation is not simply a matter of fact or an exogenous shock, but rather a matter of deliberate choice and political action.
The process of globalisation is politically assessable in one way or the
other. Domestic economies may play a merely passive role, they may get
actively involved in the shaping of the globalisation process, or they may
even opt out of globalisation, i. e. they are free to choose to participate or
not in international economic cooperation.
2. Globalisation is not a recent phenomenon. At all times people have tried to
override political and natural barriers in order to get into mutual exchange,
be it economical, social or cultural. Thus, industrialised countries have
longe been exposed to global economic competition that has always been as
fierce as it is nowadays.

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3. The actual impact of trade liberalisation on growth and development is theoretically indeterminate and the empirical evidence is controversial. There
is, however, a rich body of evidence in favour of the common view, that
free trade leads to higher welfare if not to higher growth rates and that
these gains from trade convert into higher incomes of the poor as well.
4. Trade liberalisation per se is not sufficient. It must be accompanied by a
policy of good governance on all political levels. I.e. a policy of deregulation and economic integration must be accompanied with democratic structures, the rule of law and macroeconomic stability.
5. Finally, economic openness is a bilateral process, i. e. it is insufficient by
far to demand reductions of tariffs and trade barriers from developing countries. It is at least equally important to allow these countries a free market
access. This applies especially to those markets where the LDC's have their
comparative advantages, i. e. agriculture and primary goods. The foreclosure
of these markets not only reduces welfare in the protectionist states, but
also hinders developing countries in achieving their economic potentials.
Deregulation and opening of these markets by the industrialised states could
transform globalisation into what the German Bishop Conference emphatically demanded: an option for the poor.
Literature
Coe, D. T./Helpman, E./Hoffmaister, A. W. (1997): North-South R&D spillovers, The
Economic Journal 107, pp. 134149
Dollar, D./Kraay, A. (2002): Growth is Good for the Poor, Journal of Economic
Growth 7, pp. 195225
(2004): Trade, Growth and Poverty, The Economic Journal 111, pp. 2249
Donges, J. B. et al. (2003): Globalisierungskritik auf dem Prfstand. Ein Almanach
aus konomischer Sicht, Stuttgart
The Economist, May 27, 2000
Ferreira, P. C./Rossi, J. L. (2001): New Evidence on Trade Liberalisation and Productivity Growth, Ensaiso Economicos da EPGE No. 433
Hertz, N. (2003): The Silent Takeover: Global Capitalism and the Death of Democracy, London
Jonsson, G./Subramanian, A. (1999): Dynamic Gains from Trade: Evidence from
South Africa, International Monetary Fund Working Paper No. 00/45
Lee, J.-W. (1996): Government Interventions and Productivity Growth, Journal of Economic Growth 1, pp. 391414
Rodriguez, F./Rodrik, D. (2000): Trade Policy and Economic Growth: A Sceptics Guide
to the Crossnational Evidence, NBER Macroeconomics Annual 15, pp. 261325

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Globalisation and Poverty what do we know?

279

Sachs, J. D./Warner, A. M. (1996): Economic Convergence and Economic Policies,


Brookings Papers in Economic Activity 1, pp. 195
Schmidt, O. (2004): Knnen neoklassische konomen verstehen, was Globalisierungskritiker sagen?, List-Forum fr Wirtschafts- und Finanzpolitik 30, pp. 290303
Srinivasan, T. N./Bhagwati, J. (1999): Outward-orientation and Development: Are Revisionists right?, Economic Growth Center Discussion Paper, No. 806
United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) (1999): Human Development Report, New York
Winters, L. A. (2003): Trade policy as development policy: building on fity years'
experience, in: J. Toye (Ed.), Trade and Development: Directions for the 21st century, pp. 6281
(2004): Trade Liberalisation and Economic Performance: An overview, The Economic Journal, 114, pp. 421
Winters, L. A. et al. (2004): Trade Liberalization and Poverty: The Evidence So Far,
Journal of Economic Literature 42, pp. 72115

Summary
The distributional effects of globalisation are a most controversial issue. The integration of product and factor markets is often considered to increase income inequality on the national as well as on the international level. This paper summarizes the
empirical findings on this topic. It is shown that globalisation per se does not intensify inequality. However, to what extent less developed countries benefit from economic integration depends mainly on the internal constitution of these countries in
political and economic respect.

Zusammenfassung
Die wirtschaftlichen und verteilungspolitischen Effekte der Globalisierung werden
uerst kontrovers diskutiert. Zahlreiche Autoren verbinden mit der zunehmenden Integration von Gter- und Dienstleistungsmrkten eine Verschrfung sozialer Ungleichheit in nationaler und internationaler Perspektive. Dieser Beitrag fasst die vorliegende
empirische Evidenz zu den Verteilungseffekten der Globalisierung zusammen. Es zeigt
sich, dass von einer prinzipiell ungleichheitsverschrfenden Wirkung der Globalisierung keine Rede sein kann. Inwieweit jedoch Entwicklungs- und Schwellenlnder von
der verstrkten wirtschaftlichen Zusammenarbeit profitieren, hngt im Wesentlichen
von der inneren Verfasstheit dieser Lnder in wirtschaftlicher und politischer Hinsicht
ab.

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Legitimationen des Sozialstaats


aus einer christlichen Sicht
Von Elmar Nass
Die Zukunftsfhigkeit sozialer Sicherungssysteme ist angesichts finanzieller,
demographischer oder auch vielseitiger auenpolitischer Herausforderungen
(Migration, Globalisierung, Kriege gegen den Terror) kein Selbstlufer. Kaum
eine politische Frage wie diese betrifft so viele Menschen unmittelbar.1 Dennoch sucht man eine Transparenz der Argumente in den sozialpolitischen Diskursen oft vergeblich. In den schnelllebigen Medien bleibt allenfalls Zeit fr
weitgehend zustimmungsfhige Schlagworte wie soziale Gerechtigkeit, Solidaritt, sozialer Frieden. Hinter medienwirksamen Lippenbekenntnissen und animierten Prsentationen bleiben die Inhalte oft auf der Strecke, und die weltanschaulichen Ziele verborgen. Jenseits tagespolitischer Effekthascherei muss
wenigstens in solchen Gremien, welche die Politik beraten, Klarheit ber die
jeweils angestrebten Ziele herrschen. Lobbyinteressen behindern aber auch hier
die Transparenz, wenn zum Beispiel Gewerkschaften den Begriff der Solidaritt
oder Liberale den Begriff der Effizienz exklusiv fr sich vereinnahmen wollen.
Mithilfe einer Definition des Sozialstaats werden deshalb im Folgenden aktuell
diskutierte Legitimationsstrategien einander gegenbergestellt. Es wird sich zeigen, dass eine christliche Position ihr Profil dabei weniger in einer nachahmenden Anschlussfhigkeit an konkurrierende Anstze gewinnt als in einem gezielten Schulterschluss mit solchen Positionen, die selbst das christliche Paradigma aufgreifen.
I. Definition des Sozialstaats
Das Gegenmodell zur Anarchie ist eine soziale Ordnung, in der ein Staat Regeln fr das Miteinander der Individuen aufstellt. Die Generalversammlung der
UN sowie die KSZE erklren das Rechtsstaatsprinzip zur Voraussetzung einer
legitimen Ordnung.2 Die Achtung und Wahrung der Grundrechte bindet danach
jede legitime Rechtsstaatlichkeit an die Verfassung, jede legitime Verfassung an
die Gewhrung der Grundrechte und damit an die Achtung der unantastbaren
1 Vgl. fr eine bersicht zu solchen Fragen das Standardwerk H. Lampert/J. Althammer (2004).
2 Vgl. z. B. Vereinte Nationen (1993), KSZE (1990).

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Menschenwrde. Menschenwrde ist damit das grundlegende Prinzip des legitimen Rechts- und Sozialstaats. Verschiedenste politische Krfte berufen sich nun
zur weiteren Definition des Sozialstaats auf die Solidaritt, ohne aber diesen
Begriff zu klren.3 Er folgt einem juristischen Anspruch, denn einem Rechtsverhltnis in solidum folgend haftet ein Mitglied fr eine Gruppe von Schuldnern oder es haftet die gesamte Gruppe fr ihre Mitglieder.4 Solidaritt heit
demnach grundstzlich ein gesellschaftlicher Zusammenhalt aufgrund einer gegenseitigen juristischen Verpflichtung.5 Sie legitimiert staatliche Eingriffe in das
Abwehrrecht auf freie Eigentumsverfgung und verpflichtet die Individuen zur
Loyalitt gegenber solchen Regeln. Ziel der Umverteilung kann es nun sein,
die Unvollkommenheiten des Marktes zu korrigieren (allokative Effizienz).
Oder aber es werden zur Gewhrleistung sozialen Friedens bzw. zur Durchsetzung exogener Gerechtigkeitskriterien davon unabhngige Redistributionen legitimiert. Eine Sozialstaatsbegrndung muss also einen normativen Begriff der
Menschenwrde und der Solidaritt vorlegen, so dass nun folgende Definition
vorgeschlagen werden kann: Der Sozialstaat ist eine rechtsstaatliche Sozialordnung, die aufgrund einer gegenseitigen juristischen Verpflichtung der Gemeinschaftsmitglieder Eingriffe in die Verteilungsergebnisse des Marktes durchfhrt.
II. Paradigmen zum Grundprinzip der Menschenwrde
Es sind nun objektivistische und subjektivistische Modelle zu unterscheiden.
Die objektivistische Begrndung absolut verstandener Menschenwrde wiederum differenziert sich in einen naturrechtlichen und einen kantianischen
Strang aus. In der theonom-naturrechtlichen Auslegung bei Thomas v. Aquin
gilt die menschliche Natur als das gttlich gegebene Sein, welches den konkreten Menschen als Naturgesetz eine zeitlos unbedingte Normativitt vorgibt.6
ber seine Vernunft ist dem Menschen die Mglichkeit gegeben, das Wesen
seiner gttlich gegebenen Bestimmung zu verstehen und es in eine fortzuschreibende dynamische Ethik zu bersetzen. Es handelt sich dabei um eine Gottesschau, die dem Menschen die Wahrheit ber sich und die Welt erffnet. Der
Mensch besitzt danach legitime Ansprche an die Gesellschaft deshalb, weil sie
ihm zur Gewhrleistung seiner Wrde von Natur aus zustehen.7 Die Wrde ist
hier also aus der gttlichen Herkunft der menschlichen Natur abgeleitet. AufVgl. T. Tragl (2000): 26 ff.
Vgl. entsprechende Definitionen etwa bei K. Bayertz (1998): 11, A. Rauscher
(1975): 273.
5 Vgl. A. Wildt (1998): 208. Das Prinzip der Subsidiaritt hingegen ist kein Wesensmerkmal des Sozialstaats. Es kann vielmehr erst als ein weltanschauliches Definiens des Sozialstaats hinzutreten, so wie es etwa die Katholische Soziallehre einfordert.
6 Vgl. C. Mller (2004). Diese Tradition wird von katholisch-sozialethischer Seite
vor allem von A. F. Utz und W. Ockenfels vertreten.
3
4

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Legitimationen des Sozialstaats aus einer christlichen Sicht

283

gabe des Menschen ist es, die von Gott vorgegebene Gerechtigkeit zu entdecken, nicht aber sie den eigenen Neigungen entsprechend zu konstruieren.
Nach I. Kant ist Quelle einer objektiven Normativitt die Vernunft. Die praktische Vernunft begrndet im Sittengesetz die absolute, unbedingte Referenz der
Ethik: Gib deinem Willen die Form eines allgemeinen Gesetzes!8 Das Sittengesetz ist nicht von auen vorgegeben, es muss auch nicht konstruiert werden.
Vielmehr liegt es der menschlichen Vernunft bereits apriorisch also jenseits
der Erfahrung zugrunde. Individuen, die deshalb als autonom gelten, weil sie
sich ihre Gesetze selbst geben, sind zugleich an die durch die Vernunft geoffenbarten Regeln (kategorischen Imperative) gebunden.9 Das Sittengesetz und die
autonome Vernunft ist damit das absolute Prinzip legitimer Gesetzgebung. Zur
objektiven Menschenwrde als einem absoluten Wert nun bekennt sich Kant in
einem kategorischen Imperativ, nach dem der Mensch immer zugleich als
Zweck, niemals blo als Mittel behandelt werden darf.10 Die Interpretation der
Menschenwrde darf dabei nicht an heteronomen Kriterien wie Neigungen,
Zwecken oder an Wohlfahrt gemessen werden.
Whrend nun Naturrecht und kantische Tradition Normen objektivistisch begrnden, kommt eine subjektivistische Auslegung der Menschenwrde allein
mit hypothetischen Imperativen aus, so dass Legitimitt nicht lnger an objektive Tatsachen (Naturgesetz/Sittengesetz) verwiesen ist. Nach dem Gebot des
normativen Individualismus konstruieren die Individuen mithilfe ihrer Neigungen hypothetische Imperative zur Interpretation der Menschenwrde.
III. Paradigmen der Solidaritt
Die Kooperationsgemeinschaft ist eine subjektivistisch legitimierte soziale
Ordnung zu wechselseitigem Vorteil, deren Ziel es ist, allokative Effizienz zu
realisieren.11 Eine solche Interessensolidaritt legitimiert Eingriffe in das Recht
auf Verfgungsfreiheit mit dem Ziel einer kollektiven Rationalitt, die Marktversagen berwindet und Pareto-Effizienz schafft, aber auch darber hinaus gehende Redistributionen.12 Denn allein aus eigenntziger Motivation leisten die
Wohlhabenden einen Transfer an die Schlechtergestellten, um den sozialen Frie7 Vgl. A. Margalit (1997) sowie die Auseinandersetzung mit diesem Ansatz bei A.
Krebs (2002): 144166.
8 Vgl. I. Kant: Werke IV: 422: Handle so, da die Maxime deines Willens jederzeit zugleich als Prinzip einer allgemeinen Gesetzgebung gelten knnte.
9 Vgl. K.-H. Nusser (2004).
10 Vgl. I. Kant: Werke IV: 428 ff.
11 Vgl. W. Kersting (2000): 22.
12 Pareto-effizient ist eine Vernderung gegenber einem Status quo, wenn sich
mindestens eine Person besser steht, ohne dass eine andere Person schlechter gestellt
ist.

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284

Elmar Nass

den zu sichern. Staatliche Transfers, die ber das Gebot allokativer Effizienz
und des sozialen Friedens hinausgehen, sind damit nicht zu rechtfertigen. Die
Verpflichtung kooperativer Solidaritt beschrnkt sich auf eine selbst auferlegte
kollektive Selbstbindung (commitment) jenseits sozialer Anspruchsrechte.13 Private Armenpflege entzieht sich staatlicher Verantwortung, sie ist auf eine altruistische Motivation der Geber verwiesen, welche fr das Wesen der Kooperationsgemeinschaft nicht konstitutiv ist und auch nicht rechtlich eingefordert
werden kann.14
Der Sozialstaat als Solidarittsgemeinschaft ist dagegen ein System wechselseitiger Sorge.15 Legitime gesellschaftliche Transfers leiten sich hier aus sozialen Anspruchsrechten (als kategorischen Imperativen) gegenber der Gesellschaft ab. Dabei umfasst die Solidarittsgemeinschaft auch diejenigen, die zu
einer Reziprozitt nicht oder nur beschrnkt in der Lage sind (Behinderte, dauerhaft Kranke u. a.). Soziale Solidaritt begrndet damit soziale Rechte auch
jenseits der Logik unmittelbarer gegenseitiger Vorteilsmehrung. Es ist also zu
klren, welche Sozialtransfers von staatlicher Seite im Zweifel auch jenseits
von allokativer Effizienz oder Nutzenberlegungen zum sozialen Frieden erzwungen werden knnen. Soziale Anspruchsrechte setzen damit voraus, dass
die Verpflichtung sozialer Solidaritt ber das commitment hinausgeht. Denn
die Individuen mssen sich einer objektiven Norm unterordnen, auch wenn dies
ihren Neigungen widerspricht. Die effiziente Kooperationsgemeinschaft schafft
aber auch hier die materiellen Voraussetzungen zur Erfllung sozialstaatlicher
Pflichten, so dass die Implementierung sozialer Rechte (und Pflichten) deshalb
die allokative Effizienz nicht durch Produktivittshemmnisse desavouieren
darf.16
Es knnen nun die hier unterschiedenen Paradigmen anhand von exemplarisch ausgewhlten Anstzen, die in der aktuellen Sozialstaatsdiskussion Gehr
finden, mit ihrem Gesellschaftsideal und ihrer Loyalittskonzeption einander gegenber gestellt und kritisch hinterfragt werden.
IV. Kooperationsgemeinschaft als konstitutionelle konomik
Das konstitutionenkonomische Modell der Kooperationsgemeinschaft wird
u. a. von J. Buchanan und K. Homann vertreten. Fr die Legitimierung von Eingriffen in das Verfgungsrecht ist hier ein einstimmiger Beschluss notwendig.
Da dies in der realen Welt mit hohen Konsensfindungskosten verbunden ist,
Zu diesem Verstndnis des commitment vgl. V. Vanberg (1986): 131.
Vgl. H. Boucsein (1983): 269 ff., G. Stavenhagen (1969): 90.
15 Vgl. W. Kersting (2000): 23.
16 Zu diesem Effizienzgebot sozialstaatlicher Ordnungspolitik vgl. C. Watrin (ca.
1989): 76 und H. Lampert (ca. 1989): 65.
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wird ein hypothetischer Gesellschaftsvertrag konstruiert.17 Konstitutionell entscheidende Homines oeconomici sind hier keinem wie auch immer konstruierten Unwissenheitsschleier ausgesetzt, so dass sie sich in der konstitutionellen
Situation des Naturzustandes einstimmig auf Regeln einigen, die langfristig pareto-effiziente Allokationen versprechen. Freiheit realisiert sich dann allein in
negativen Abwehrrechten der Individuen. Im Ideal der moral order herrscht
ein Geist anonymer Reziprozitt, da sich alle bewusst sind, dass sie innerhalb
des gleichen konstitutionellen Rahmens ihre eigenen Interessen frei verfolgen
knnen und sich gleichermaen den konstitutionell beschlossenen Restriktionen
freiwillig unterwerfen.18 Menschenwrde ist hier deshalb realisiert, weil die
moral order eine Symbiose aus individueller (negativer) Freiheit, wirtschaftlichem Wohlstand und Kooperation garantiert.19 Restriktionen, die die Komplexitt individueller Entscheidungen verringern und damit die Kooperationsgewinne
erhhen, realisieren als hypothetische Imperative die Menschenwrde.20 Fr die
Implementierung mssen sich die realen Menschen in die konstitutionelle Situation hinein versetzen, in der ohne Defektion einstimmig pareto-effiziente Restriktionen beschlossen wurden. Denn sie sind verpflichtet, den postkonstitutionellen Regeln nicht nur hypothetisch, sondern auch real zustimmen. Es wird
dazu angenommen, dass politische Entscheidungen ber Regeln in der realen
Welt unter den konstitutionell legitimierten Restriktionen und somit im Kontext
freiwillig gewhlter Regeln getroffen werden. Die konkreten politischen Entscheidungen folgen also dem Eigennutzkalkl unter legitimen Restriktionen, so
dass sie auch dann legitimiert sind, wenn eine konkrete politische Einstimmigkeit darber nicht zu erzielen ist.21 Das fr die Durchsetzung notwendige commitment fordert damit individuelle Moral, moralische Motivation von einzelnen im Sinne einer Loyalitt gegenber dem demokratischen Prozess und gegenber der in ihm legitimierten Restriktionen.22 Moral ist hier als Loyalitt
gegenber dem kategorischen Gebot der Effizienz zu verstehen.
Offene Fragen: (1) Es ist dabei nicht unmittelbar einsichtig, warum im Naturzustand zum Beispiel eine grundstzliche chtung von Raub beschlossen werden sollte.23 So ist eine Pareto-Verbesserung beispielsweise dadurch zu erzielen,
dass Maschinen weniger qualifizierten Eigentmern abgenommen werden, um
sie den besser Qualifizierten zur Verfgung zu stellen. So liee sich eine Konstellation der Leibeigenschaft legitimieren. Ob der glckliche Sklave aber frei
Einstimmigkeit konstitutioneller Entscheidung fordert K. Homann (1988): 162 ff.
Vgl. J. Buchanan (1999).
19 Vgl. J. Buchanan (1999): 34. Analog dazu sprechen K. Homann/F. Blome-Drees
(1992): 15 von der Solidaritt im Sinne der Kooperation als einer Leitidee.
20 Fr diese Zuordnung vgl. K. Beckmann/C. Geyer/F. Hauser (2002): 13.
21 Vgl. K. Homann (1988): 194 f.
22 Vgl. K. Homann/F. Blome-Drees (1992): 39.
23 Vgl. K. Homann (1988): 165 ff., J. Buchanan (1975): 23 ff.
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ist, dies mag trefflich bestritten werden. Einwnde wie dieser lassen sich nur
vorbringen, wenn Freiheit nicht mit Pareto-Effizienz kongruiert. Solche exogenen Kriterien werden aber nicht zugelassen. (2) Wenn allein das Pareto-Kriterium die Regeln legitimieren soll, bleibt damit die Frage offen, welche der
mglichen Pareto-Verbesserungen nun von den Homines oeconomici einstimmig ausgewhlt werden. Zudem wird mit dem Pareto-Kriterium ein kategorischer Imperativ eingefhrt, was aber dem subjektivistischen Ansatz widerspricht. (3) Ohne einen Schleier der Unwissenheit flieen in den konstitutionellen Vertrag die vorkonstitutionell bestehenden Machtverhltnisse der Individuen
mit ein. Es ist damit nicht ausgeschlossen, dass sich in der Auswahl der Regeln
das Recht des Strkeren durchsetzt, um so die im Status quo vorliegende Hegemonie zu zementieren und den Schwcheren nur soviel Besserung ihrer Situation zuzugestehen, wie es die Sicherung sozialen Friedens erfordert.24 (4) Die
Bereitschaft zum commitment in der Kooperationsgemeinschaft hlt etwa Buchanan selbst fr gefhrdet, wenn der gegenseitige Respekt der Menschen verloren geht: ein Entwicklungsprozess, der in der gegenwrtigen US-amerikanischen Gesellschaft zu beobachten sei.25 Ein Ausweg aus dieser Gefhrdung der
Kooperation wird aber nicht aufgezeigt. Fr eine funktionsfhige Gesellschaft
wird ein kulturbedingter Wertkonsens vorausgesetzt. Hier ist das Einfallstor fr
objektivistische Werte bereits geffnet.
V. Gerechtigkeit als Fairness jenseits des Sozialstaats
J. Rawls entwirft mithilfe einer Vertragstheorie seine Theorie sozialer Kooperation.26 Rational (eigenntzige) Individuen beschlieen danach in einem konstruierten Urzustand Gerechtigkeitsgrundstze, die soziale Anspruchsrechte aber
ausschlielich fr die Kooperationsfhigen verbriefen:27 (a) each person has
the same indefeasable claim to a fully adequate scheme of equal basic liberties,
which scheme is compatible with the same scheme of liberties for all; and (b)
Social and economic inequalities are to satisfy two conditions: first, they are to
be attached to offices and positions open to all under conditions of fair equality
of opportunity; and second, they are to be the greatest benefit of the least-advantaged members of society (the difference-principle).28 Der erste Anschein,
Rawls wolle mithilfe des normativen Individualismus eine Kooperationsgemeinschaft begrnden, trgt aber. Denn fr Rawls ist die Legitimitt von Regeln an
die Vernunft gebunden. So ist der Mensch im Naturzustand nach Rawls nicht
Vgl. U. Thielemann (1996).
Vgl. J. Buchanan (1987): 289.
26 Vgl. I. Maus (1998): 72.
27 Diese Grundstze finden sich in leicht variierter Form bereits bei G. Weisser
(1959). Vgl. zu dieser Vorwegnahme z. B. H. Romahn (1995).
28 J. Rawls (2001): 42 f.
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nur rational, sondern auch vernnftig.29 Rationalitt befhigt ihn zu commitment und Kooperation, Vernunft zu darber hinausgehender Tugend und Solidaritt. Den Personen im Urzustand schreibt Rawls deshalb moral powers zu:
den Gerechtigkeitssinn (Kompetenz fr vernnftige Entscheidungen ber faire
Kooperation) und die Befhigung zur Konzeption des Guten (Mglichkeit zur
Reflexion letzter Ziele und Werte).30 In der kantischen Tradition, zu der sich
Rawls bekennt, ist die Vernunft zugleich Quelle absoluter Normativitt, so dass
also die Grundstze das Ergebnis rationaler wie vernnftiger Entscheidung sind
und damit kategorische Imperative verbriefen. Und schlielich wissen die gedachten risikoaversen Vertragspartner im Urzustand unter einem veil of ignorance nichts ber ihre Talente oder die ihnen in der knftigen Gesellschaft
zukommende gesellschaftliche Stellung. Damit sollen die vorkonstitutionellen
Machtverhltnisse aus der Entscheidungssituation herausgefiltert werden. Ziel
ist dann nicht die Freilegung der eigenntzigen Rationalitt, vielmehr sind dem
Urzustand Restriktionen bereits exogen vorgegeben, und die Definition menschlicher Wrde wird von Nutzenberlegungen entkoppelt: Jeder Mensch besitzt
eine aus der Gerechtigkeit entspringende Unverletzlichkeit, die auch im Namen
des Wohles der ganzen Gesellschaft nicht aufgehoben werden darf.31 Die im
Urzustand gewhlten objektiven Grundstze sollen nun die Verteilung von so
genannten Grundgtern regeln, die als Freiheitsrechte zu interpretieren sind. In
der Hierarchie lexikalisch zu garantierender Gter ganz oben stehen dabei die
Meinungs- und Gewissensfreiheit (1. Kategorie) sowie Bewegungsfreiheit und
selbst bestimmte Arbeitsplatzwahl (2. Kategorie). Dabei handelt es sich um Abwehrrechte, die den Freiraum zur Selbstbestimmung gegen staatliche Willkr
schtzen. Das Recht auf freie Verfgung reiht sich dagegen neben den Anspruchsrechten auf Wohlstand und soziale Sicherung (3. Kategorie) ein. Es steht
also der Anspruch auf die Verfgungsfreiheit in der Hierarchie keineswegs ber
den positiven Freiheitsrechten wie Wohlstand und sozialer Sicherheit. Da nun
die individuellen Talente und die daraus gezogenen Nutznieungen (die Einkommen) als ein common asset gelten, also in erster Linie der Gesellschaft
und nicht den Individuen gehren, weil sie den Individuen zufallen und nicht
selbst verdient sind, mssen sie der Gesellschaft fr die als sozial gerecht befundene Verteilung der Grundgter entsprechend der lexikalischen Abfolge zur
Verfgung gestellt werden.32 Damit ist das individuelle Verfgungsrecht innerhalb der dritten Grundgter-Kategorie den konkurrierenden positiven Freiheitsrechten gegenber nachgeordnet, so dass die sozialen Rechte auf Wohlstand und
Vgl. J. Rawls (2001): 7 ff.
Vgl. W. Hinsch (2002): 27 ff. Vgl. H. Kliemt (1998): 107: Die Rckfhrung
der Moral ausschlielich auf nicht-moralische Wnsche, Affekte, Strebungen oder Prferenzen ist nach dieser Sicht unmglich.
31 J. Rawls (1998): 19.
32 Vgl. J. Rawls (2001): 65.
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soziale Sicherheit (zur Selbstachtung) Umverteilungen und damit verbundene


Zwangseingriffe unmittelbar legitimieren.33 Fr die Implementierung stimmen
die konkreten Brger den Grundstzen kraft ihres common human reason
zu.34 Der soziale Friede ist dazu in praxi auf eine Bildungspolitik angewiesen,
die eine Moral jenseits des commitment freisetzt, weil die rationalen Entscheidungen nur dann legitim sind, wenn sie der Vernunft entsprechen.35
Offene Fragen: (1) Das postulierte Ideal fairer Kooperation mag man teilen
oder nicht. Das gilt auch fr die Definition der Fairness als Verteilung