Israel’s Improbable Allies: Christian Zionism and its Strategic Consequences for the United States, Israel and the Palestinians
Cahier Thucydide n°4

Strangely enough for a conflict over a territory that is the birthplace of Christianity, the role of Christian Zionism in determining US foreign policy towards Israel has rarely been studied. Christian Zionism is an Evangelical Christian movement, which has been advocating the “Restoration” of the Jews in the Holy Land for more than 300 years. Christian Zionists hold dear the belief that the land of Israel belongs to the Jews based on three doctrines: the anti-replacement theology doctrine, the prosperity doctrine and the prophecy doctrine. With the political awakening of the Christian Right in the United States from the 1980s on, and the embrace of Christian Zionism by parts of the Israeli and American Jewish communities, the religious movement has become a strong political voice, substantially influencing US foreign policy on the matter. Evangelical support comes with political and financial benefits for Israel, but there are also risks to this friendship. Christian Zionists are dedicated to supporting and defending the Jewish state almost entirely regardless of the international consequences of the unresolved Israeli-Palestinian conflict. As Evangelical Christianity is growing all over the world, especially in Asia, Africa and South America, questions remain on the emergence of a pro-Israel transnational Christian network that would be capable of significantly influencing Israel’s destiny. The religious fervor deployed by these Christians regarding the Holy Land is so fierce that it would be a mistake to fail to take it into account when assessing chances for peace in the Near East.