Faith is all too often perceived as a personal matter of the individual and his or her relationship with God. But increasingly, faith has become a battleground. Beyond the routine competition between Christian and Muslim, Hindu and Buddhist, Taoist and Communist, there are many locations where two powers—religious and secular—come into direct conflict, and vast gulfs open up.

World Policy Journal has set out to chronicle such fault lines of faith, examine their origins and the forces that continue to drive wedges between communities. We’ve settled on three locations—Venezuela, where Jews and the state are increasingly in conflict; China, where the state is nervously clamping down on underground churches; and Turkey, where the ancient Byzantine empire of Orthodox Christians confronts daily challenges from the Islamic nation that surrounds them. We’ve asked writers in each of these nations to define the fault...

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