Awaiting The End: The Eschatology of American-Israeli Relations

Benson, Jacob H.
Beginning in the late 19th century, Zionism – the desire by Jews for a Jewish homeland – began to emerge as a dominating geopolitical movement. By the time Israel gained statehood in 1948, Zionism's definition expanded to encapsulate competing Jewish and Christian theologies, as well as ethnic and political philosophies. I argue that religious Zionism has permeated the political discourse and created an American Zionism that creates a view of the Middle East that influences the way Americans talk about Israel, Arabs, and Muslims. This paper argues it is important for Americans to understand a movement that dictates how their government spends billions of dollars every year, as well as how the government dictates foreign policy toward the Middle East. Contained is a brief history of Zionism, as well as an overview of the theological views of Christians who wholeheartedly support Israel. I use Interviews with local Christian Zionists, as well as excerpts from online message boards to provide insight to the way the average American Zionist discusses the Middle East in ways that mirror the ways Evangelical Christians discuss the end of the world.
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