Date of Award

Spring 2008

Project Type


Program or Major

Political Science

Degree Name

Master of Arts

First Advisor

Jeannie L Sowers


This study examines the Christian Zionist movement. It identifies the motivations, composition, and objectives of the Christian Zionist movement in order to illuminate the interest group's influence on U.S. foreign policy making on Israel. The movement's influence results from the framing of its ideology as a political project, through which the movement is able to capitalize on a pre-existing pro-Israel opinion bias among Evangelicals, construct a community of believers from these individuals, and mobilize that community into action. This argument shows that classic realist accounts, such as that put forward in Mearsheimer and Walt's work, do not account for a definition of the national interest that is not characterized in terms of realpolitick, and are therefore inappropriate when discussing Christian Zionists. The national interest in the view of Christian Zionists is framed in terms of their ideology, which realist analysis cannot incorporate.