A Congruence of Interests: Christian Zionism and U.S Policy Toward Israel, 1977-1998
Abstract (Summary)This thesis examines the phenomenon of political Christian Zionism and its influence on U.S. policy toward Israel from 1977 to 1998. While there is a vast literature on America Middle East policy and the relationship between the U.S. and Israel; relatively little attention has been given to the actions of Christian evangelicals on behalf of Israel. Motivated by an eschatological system called dispensationalism, these Christian Zionists supported Israel through a variety of activities, including direct lobbying at the congressional level. Forming alliances with the Jewish pro-Israel lobby and the Israeli Likud party, Christian Zionists were active in pressuring Congress to oppose arms sales to Arab countries and gaining recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. The rise to political prominence of the Christian Right during the 1980s and 1990s facilitated the growth and influence of Christian Zionist efforts, connecting dispensationalism to political power as never before. While scholars in the field of diplomatic history have noted the strategic and economic concerns that drove U.S. policy toward Israel, as well as the influence of the American Jewish community and its lobby, they have failed to adequately understand or integrate the profound political actions of Christian Zionists. By examining the role that Christian Zionism has had in the myriad of factors that have influenced U.S. policy toward Israel a more complete understanding of the dynamics of the U.S.-Israeli relationship is gained. In short, this thesis adds Christian Zionism to the matrix of factors currently identified as underlying the unique partnership between the United States and Israel.
School Location:USA - Ohio
Source Type:Master's Thesis
Keywords:christian zionism israel dispensationalism
Date of Publication:01/01/2006