Shortly after the cartoon crisis settled down, I decided to read everything I could find written by the Alliance of Civilizations. Over the following months, I discovered the AoC’s web site that contained a scrolling message that stated its purpose was to counter the political, social, and religious forces that foment extremism. Also see Kofi Annan’s announcement of the composition of the High Level Group. The AoC’s agenda started to became quite evident to me. The first words on one of the documents spoke volumes: One People – One Goal – One Faith.
As I read through the large amount of documents on the Alliance’s web site, I realized there were words that should concern people of nearly every faith. For Example:
In Kofi Annan’s speech at the second AoC High Level Group (HLG) meeting, he identified the “clash of civilizations” problem as such: “It is important that we all realize that the problem is not with the faith but with a small group of the faithful – the extremists who tend to abuse and misinterpret the faith…”
The AoC’s working paper submitted by Spain further identified the problem with the faithful. The purpose of the AoC, it said, was “To counter the influence of those who feed on exclusion and claim sole ownership of the truth”. Christians who believe the words of Jesus in John 14:6 will no doubt find themselves on the wrong side of the AoC . Though for some, the Alliance intends to accommodate apostasy as one contributor to the process has said that the new age christ will redefine Christianity. A document published toward the end of 2006 tells us that it is the Alliance of Civilizations who grasps the truth and intends to supply it to us whether we like it or not. I will address this further in an upcoming blog post.
Not surprisingly, I found the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization to be an active participant in the AoC. Federico Mayor, past Director General of UNESCO is now the Co-chair of the AoC. In an address to the HLG at its third meeting, UNESCO called for restrictions on free speech where religious criticism was concerned: “Freedom of expression and freedom of the press are vital to cultural dialogue and must be defended as indispensable elements of democratic societies. HOWEVER, like other freedoms and rights, they must be exercised in accordance with respect for moral and religious convictions…” (emphasis mine)
Prime Minister Erdogan of Turkey chimed in with items that caught my attention:
1) That the AoC would “develop a list of concrete measures that both governments and civil societies will have to implement”; and
2) According to the HLG’s summary meeting notes of November 27-29 (no longer available online), the AoC philosophical heritage can be traced “to previous efforts aimed at bridging civilizations and cultures, notably the Dialogue Among Civilizations.” The UN Dialogue of Civilizations can be traced to Iran’s Mohammad Khatami. My next blog post will be devoted specifically to Khatami.
Finally, I noticed a common denominator in all of this. As I read Spains working paper, a portion stood out to me regarding the political and security panel: “The consolidation of a more fair international order; the promotion of democracy, national cohesion and human rights, in the framework of already existing initiatives such as the Barcelona Process and the Broader Middle East”. The common denominator I have noticed in the Alliance of Civilizations is Spain:
- Spanish Socialist Javier Solana is the initiator of the Barcelona Process.
- Spanish Socialist Zapatero introduced the AoC to the United Nations
- Spaniard Federico Mayor chairs the AoC.
I became seriously concerned and began to make phone calls to warn others. I remain very concerned to this day. Unfortunately, as you will see in future blog posts, things get worse.