According to the Washington Post, a foreign policy task force has decided that “Western secularism” is impeding US foreign policy goals. The US needs to make religion “an integral part of our foreign policy.”
Some of this might be based on a degree of reality. If our imperial masters have been ignoring religion as a major cultural force in the world, then, they’ve been screwing up. I doubt that this is the case, but I don’t really know.
What worries me is the notion of explicitly disavowing secularism becoming tied to military and foreign policy. In the US, “national defense” (in the sense of the best defense being a good offense, I assume) is politically untouchable. We even build highways and fund science because these are supposed to be national security imperatives. So if “excessive secularism” becomes perceived as a problem in this corner of public life, that would be anti-secularism with some serious teeth. In a time when the US military is taking on an increasingly evangelical color, and casual Islamophobia is rampant, I worry that it is not just awareness of religion but flat-out religiosity that will become an integral part of US foreign policy.
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