The book addresses the fundamental question of how should the United States deal with identity—based conflicts that permeate today’s political landscape. It argues for a rethinking of old assumptions, particularly those related to the secular mindset that excludes religious imperatives from the process of formulation of foreign policy and the practice of diplomacy. It calls for the expansion of the scope of policymaking through the inclusion of religious actors and experts and the development of an effective strategy of cultural and spiritual engagement, backed by a deeper understanding of how religion informs the world views and aspirations of those who do not separate church and state.
Specifically, the book accomplishes three different tasks: It shows how religious considerations can be incorporated into the practice of US foreign policy, offers a successor to the rational-actor model of decision making that has –so far – excluded non-state actors and significant factors like religion and suggests a new paradigm for US leadership in anticipation of tomorrow’s multi-polar world.
The book describes how the United States should realign itself to deal more effectively with the causal factors that underlie religious extremism and explains how existing capabilities can be redirected to respond to the challenges of identity-based conflicts and identifies additional capabilities that are needed to complete the task.
The author, Douglas M. Johnston, Jr., PhD is president and founder of the Washington-based International Center for Religion and Diplomacy (ICRD). He was editor and principal author of Religion,, the Missing Dimension of State Craft; Foreign Policy into the 21st Century: The US Leadership Challenge; and Faith-Based Diplomacy: Trumping Real Politic.
For more information on ICRD and its work, please check; www.icrd.org.
The book was published Praeger www.abc-clio.com