Ross Douthat: Yes, There Is a Clash of Civilizations

From a New York Times column by Ross Douthat headlined “Yes, There Is a Clash of Civilizations”:

In 1996 the political scientist Samuel Huntington offered several strong claims about the post-Cold War world.

Global politics was becoming not just “multipolar” but “multicivilizational,” he argued, with competing powers modernizing along different cultural lines, not simply converging with the liberal West. “The balance of power among civilizations” was shifting, and the West was entering a period of relative decline. A “civilization-based world order” was emerging, in which societies “sharing cultural affinities” were more likely to group themselves into alliances or blocs. And the would-be universalism of the West was setting the stage for sustained conflict with rival civilizations, most notably with China and the Islamic world.