It is obvious that many countries in the world, particularly in the Middle East, are nowadays suffering from violent conflicts. People in many circles whether academicians, professionals, students and the general public are proposing different interpretations and analyses about the phenomenon of conflict and resistance. Besides, their understanding of the related key concepts such as ‘Jihad’, ‘Just War’, ‘Terrorism’, ‘Violence’ ‘Peace’ and ‘Ethics’ proven to be inconsistent and problematic. Violence, conflict and war usually lead to human disaster and chaos particularly mass killing, human displacement, refugee flows and physical destruction. Against this background, CILE believes that it is time to gather scholars and experts from around the world representing different schools of thought to sit together for two days to debate this current issue and provide an ethical deep understanding of its theoretical and applied aspects.
Three subthemes will be addressed during these two days as follow:
- The subtheme of the first session is “Rethinking Jihad and Just War” and it will address conceptual issues pertaining to Jihad, Just War and related theoretical issues. Scholars will critically approach these concepts and provide a deep understanding of how the political, cultural and ethical issues prevent clear definitions in conceptualizing ‘Jihad’, ‘Just War’, and ‘terrorism’. They will also try to identify the authorities that determine whether conflict, war or resistance is legitimate, just or unjust – and how are such decisions made? It will also be important to explain how people can best understand Jihad from both within Muslim discourses and Western approaches.
- The subtheme of the second session is “Violent and Nonviolent Means Towards a Just Peace. This session explores the meaning and scope of violence and assess the arguments for violent v/s non-violent means to achieve peace in a conflict situation. Panelists will also try to find out whether or not “just peace” is based upon universal ethics, or is it merely a question of negotiation and compromise between conflicting parties.
- The third subtheme is “The Consequences of Violent/Nonviolent and Just /Unjust Peace. The panelists will look discuss the impact of violence and injustice on peace. They will particularly focus on addressing questions such as: How are humanitarian issues factored in to conflict and resistance that result in internal displacement and refugee flows? Can violent conflict ever lead to real peace? Does Jihad / Just War guarantee just and ethical outcomes?
We hope that you will find the sessions, presentations, discussions of the conference useful and enjoyable. We would appreciate if you could share your thoughts with us to help advance the knowledge and moral dialogue on these important issues. We would like to thank you for your attendance and contribution which will inspire us to continue our endeavors.