Most War and Violence Is Fratricidal
"The history of hatred and violence is, to a surprising degree, a history of brother against brother, not brother against stranger," argues Russell Jacoby — Bloodlust. An excerpt:
- From Cain and Abel to the religious wars of the 16th and 17th centuries and the civil wars of our own age, it is not so often strangers who elicit hatred, but neighbors.
This observation contradicts both common sense and the collective wisdom of teachers and preachers, who declaim that we fear—sometimes for good reason—the unknown and dangerous stranger. Citizens and scholars alike believe that enemies lurk in the street and beyond the street, where we confront a "clash of civilizations" with foreigners who challenge our way of life.
The truth is more unsettling. From assault to genocide, from assassination to massacre, violence usually emerges from inside the fold rather than outside it.
Labels: War and Rumors of War