Recent polls show the previously little-known Mike Huckabee now running a close race with contenders Mitt Romney and John McCain. Huckabee, who won the key
Christian Zionism stems from the belief that the catastrophic events depicted in the biblical Book of Revelation are humanity's literal destiny, and that two-thirds of the Earth's population will perish in an apocalyptic battle of good and evil while the "saved" are "raptured up" to heaven. For Christian Zionists, this catastrophe is a necessary precedent to the Second Coming. Followers of this ideology comprise an estimated 20 million Americans, a number that grew rapidly after September 11 and increased
While those outside of evangelical circles may dismiss such beliefs, they have played a critical role in influencing
For Christian Zionists, belief in biblical prophecy means support for right-wing Israeli policies such as settlement expansion and opposition to a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Against the opinion of most Israelis, Christian Zionists view relinquishing any part of biblical
Evangelical foreign policy extends far beyond
Like other evangelicals, Huckabee tends to view the "War on Terror" as a cataclysmic battle with apocalyptic connotations. "We need to understand that this is, in fact World War III," he has said. "Unlike any other war we've ever fought, this one is one we cannot afford to lose."
Whether or not Christian Zionists can predict the future, the human potential to create self-fulfilling prophesies is undeniable, and this is why Americans should pay attention to this ideology.
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This story was published on January 23, 2008.