One last post, before my non-philosophical blogging stint is done. One thing I’ve thought of with recent events in the middle east was the parallels to the Book of Mormon. I know that’s not exactly an original point to make, but I think the Book of Mormon has a lot of parallels both regarding our enemies as well as how we act towards our enemies. Dan Peterson has long written about the strong parallels between the Gadianton movement and various guerilla movements and insurgencies. I’ve listened to him describe extensive parallels, for instance, between Mao’s insurgency in China and events in the Book of Mormon.
Now this wasn’t entirely alien to Joseph Smith’s world. As I recall the term guerilla war arose out of British actions in Spain during the Napoleonic wars. Events there were quite interesting both for the succes against Napoleon, thereby helping the main British forces, as well as for its social aftermath. Once a people have been lawless, it is very hard to restore a successful civilization. (Something I think we see in Afghanistan)
Anyway, rather than listen to me spout off about all this, let me throw it out to all of you. What lessons ought we draw from the Book of Mormon for current events? I recognize that both liberals and conservatives draw often opposing lessons. So let the sparks fly.
As some background, here’s a very interesting first hand account of the battle of Fallujah that might be relevant. Two other excellent resources for events are The Belmont Club for a more conservative view and Juan Cole’s Informed Consent for a more liberal view. (Both make great points at times) An other great source is Intel Dump which is somewhat anti-Bush but often very informative.