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The Christian Zionist Lobby and U.S.-Israel Policy by Mark G. Grzegorzewski A thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts Department of Government and International Affairs College of Arts and Sciences University of South Florida Major Professor: Mark Amen, Ph.D. Michael Solomon, Ph.D. Abdelwahab Hechiche, Ph.D. Date of Approval: June 25, 2010 Keywords: Israel, Road Map, Unilateralism, United States, Christian Zionists Copyright 2010, Mark G. Grzegorzewski
DEDICATION For my beautiful daughter Riley Katelyn. Without the joy you bring to my life I never would have continued to pursue my academic goals. Your very being provides me with the inspiration to make the world a better place for you to grow up in.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS I would like thank Dr. Mark Amen for his guidance and patience in this endeavor. His critical remarks over the past two years have given form to an initially unfocused research project. Further, he has pushed me to take positions and expose my views thereby making me a stronger student. I would like to thank Dr. Scott Solomon for his scholarly enthusiasm coupled with his affability, which has made learning under him an illuminating experience. I would also like to thank Dr. Abdelwahab Hechiche for allowing me to access his wealth of knowledge on the Middle East. In addition to this knowledge, his refreshing optimism has made learning from him a pleasurable experience.
i TABLE OF CONTENTS LIST OF TABLES .............................................................................................................. iii LIST OF FIGURES ........................................................................................................... iv LIST OF MAPS ................................................................................................................. v ABSTRACT .................................................................................................................. v i INTRODUCTION ............................................................................................................... 5 CHAPTER I: RESEARCH OUTLINE ................................................................................ 7 Research Question ................................................................................................ 7 Theoretical Framework .......................................................................................... 8 Research Methodology ....................................................................................... 10 CHAPTER II: LITERATURE REVIEW ............................................................................ 1 4 The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy ........................................................... 14 The Neoconservatives ......................................................................................... 21 The Jewish Diaspora ........................................................................................... 25 Christian Zionists ................................................................................................. 30 CHAPTER III: CASE STUDY I: ORGANIZATIONAL STRUCTURE OF THE CHRISTIAN ZIONIST LOBBY ............................................................................. 36 Findings ............................................................................................................... 36
ii Christians United for Israel .................................................................................. 39 National Christian Leadership Conference for Israel ........................................... 41 Unity Coalition for Israel ...................................................................................... 41 Christian Friends of Israeli Communities ............................................................. 42 Christians Israel Public Action Committee .......................................................... 43 International Christian Embassy Jerusalem ........................................................ 44 International Fellowship of Christians and Jews .................................................. 45 Stand for Israel .................................................................................................... 46 CHAPTER IV: CASE STUDY II: FROM THE ROAD MAP TO UNILATERLAISM .......... 49 Findings ............................................................................................................... 49 2003 ................................................................................................................. 49 2004 ................................................................................................................. 61 2005 ................................................................................................................. 6 5 2006 ................................................................................................................. 6 7 CHAPTER V: CONCLUSION .......................................................................................... 68 Analysis ............................................................................................................... 68 LIST OF REFERENCES ................................................................................................. 73
iii LIST OF TABLES Table I. Campaign Committees and Leadership PAC Combined by ProIsrael Lobby ............................................................................................. 38 Table II. Religions and Parties of Politicians who associate with the Christian Zionist Lobby ............................................................................ 39
iv LIST OF FIGURES Figure I Palestinian-Israeli Peace Process ............................................................. 3
v LIST OF MAPS Map 1 Israel and the Occupied Territories ............................................................ 1 Map 2 Israeli Security Fence ................................................................................ 2
vi The Christian Zionist Lobby and US Israel Policy Mark G. Grzegorzewski ABSTRACT This research explores the role of the Christian Zionist Lobby in shaping U.S. policy towards Israel. It is posited that the Christian Zionist Lobby, due to their eschatological goals, diverge from the interests of the larger Israel Lobby described by Mearsheimer and Walt. To test this hypothesis an exploratory case study is implemented to explain why the U.S. shifted its policy from supporting the Road Map to backing Israeli unilateralism. As the results of this study show, the Christian Zionists did actively oppose the Road Map and may have influenced American policy making. However, it would be a mistake to characterize the Gaza pullout as the most desirable policy alternative for the Christian Zionist Lobby. This study concludes that when comparing the lobbying efforts agains t the Road Map and Israeli unilateralism the Christian Zionists actively opposed the former policy while the evidence in support of the latter policy remained inconclusive.
1 Map I: Israel and the Occupied Territories Source : Nationmaster.com
2 Map II: Israeli Security Fence Source: BTselem
3 Figure I: Timeline of Palestinian-Israeli Peace Process 1991Madrid Conference Palestinians negotiate with Israel as part of Jordanian delegation. 1992two Israeli professors in Oslo are approached by Palestinians who say Arafat is ready for peace. Negotiations last for two years. September 13, 1993a joint Israeli Palestinian Declaration of Principles (DOP) is signed, based on the agreement worked out in Oslo. May 5, 1996negotiations on the permanent status arrangements commence in Taba. October 23, 1998In Wye Memorandum both sides agree to immediately resume permanent status negotiations on an accelerated basis and to reach agreement by May 4, 1999 July 2000Camp David Summit ends without an agreement being reached. At its conclusion, a Trilateral Statement was issued defining the agreed principles to guide future negotiations September 2000 SecondIntifda begins due to Palestinians viewing Israel as dragging their feet in peace process and Sharon's visit to Al Aqsa Mosque 2002Arab Peace Initiative calls for Israeli withdrawal from all territories occupied since 1967 and return of the Palestine refugees to Israel in return for recognition of Israel and normal relations. 2003the "Road Map" for a solution to the IsraelPalestinian conflict is presented to Israel and the Palestinians 2004Israel's cabinet and Knesset approve the plan for disengagement from the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip and northern Samaria.
4 2006In the elections of the Palestinian Authority a Hamas led government is established 2007In the Palestinian civil war, Hamas takes over the Gaza Strip. 2008At the Annapolis Conference Israelis and Palestinians agree to engage in continuous negotiations in an effort to conclude an agreement before the end of 2008. June 4, 2009In Cairo speech President Obama remarks that both sides should live up to their responsibilities that were agreed to under the Road Map.
5 INTRODUCTION John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt in The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy claim the Israel Lobby has caused the U S. to pursue policies that are not in line with American national interests1This desire to further both Israeli and Americ an interests results from members of the Israel Lobby not viewing their ethnic and national identities as exclusionary. These non -exclusionary identities allow for members of the Israel Lobby to hold attachments to both Israel and America. In accordance wi th certain American nationals supporting Israel, Mearsheimer and Walt label those who actively lobby on behalf of Israel as belonging to the Israel Lobby. However, by identifying the Israel Lobby as groups who support a secure Israel as a territorially bound state, as well as those who support the Jewish state for eschatological purposes, the authors understate the efforts and intentions of the Christian Zionist Lobby. As a result, this research will contribute to the influences on U.S.-Israel policy by presenting how the interests of the Israel Lobby are According to the authors, these policies diverge from Americas true national interest and have consequently hurt American power. Yet Mearsheimer and Walt do not claim these outcomes occurred because the lobby sought to further Israeli interests at the expense of American interests. Nor do the authors claim that the Israel Lobby is a monolithic bloc that all Jewish groups support. To the authors, the Israel Lobby exists like any other special interest group in the United States, in that it uses the normal channels of government to further its own preferences. 1 Mearsheimer and Walt 2007: 8
6 not homogeneous. Accordingly, different actors within the Israel Lobby seek to shape American -Israeli policy based upon different preferences.
7 CHAPTER I RESEARCH OUTLINE This research pr oject sought to answer why America has provided nearly unconditional support for Israel? I hypothesized that the Christian Zionist Lobby influences the American government to pursue policies in support of Israel. To test the hypothesis two case studies wer e conducted to analyze the Christian Zionists influence over the policy shift from American support of the Road Map to the U.S. backing Israeli unilateralism The first case study centered on the organizational structure of the Christian Zionists in order to understand the ways in which they influence the American government to support Israel. The second case study focused on a specific time period in which the U.S. supported a shift in policy from the Road Map to Israeli Unilateralism. Research Question In The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy it is claimed that the Israel Lobby causes America to provide Israel with nearly unconditional support. This researcher instead posits that the Christian Zionists pursue their own preferences in Washington, and in doing so influence American policy towards Israel. As the literature review show s the Christian Zionist Lobby works to pursue policy preferences that are detached from the rest of the Israel Lobby. T hese preferences are based upon eschatological beliefs, while the Israel Lobby preferences are based upon securing a territorially based Jewish state.
8 Accordingly, when the objectives of the Christian Zionists are detached from the Israel Lobby, the shaping of American policy toward Israel can be understood through a much richer analysis. Theoretical Framework There are several International Relations theories that could be used to explain American support for a stronger Israel. In Mearsheimer and Walts work they view the Israel Lobby as a domestic group that attempts to shape the U.S. interests. As the authors are Realists, this runs counter to their understanding of how states are to formulate their interests. Realists see states as always defining their interests through self-preservation, due to the anarchical nature of the international system. Their strive for self-preservation leads states to clash due to each viewing the others power relative to its own. Put another way, states see power in the international system as a zero-sum game in which one unit of power lost by a state is a one unit gain in power by another state. This view of power causes states to avoid alliances in their policy formation. For states view other states intentions with distrust. This is not to say that states never form a lliances, but when they do, it is for the purpose of enhancing their own power. This researcher holds the same view as Mearsheimer and Walt, in that the anarchical structure of the system causes states to define their interests in selfinterested terms. I also concur with the normative claim that domestic groups should not define a states interest. For in redefining a states interest outside of selfpreservation states may undertake policies such as democracy promotion that will increase the power of other states. This action which is not in accordance with self-interest will cause the state to use valuable resources that could have been used to increase the power of
9 ones own state. Further, this policy preference may cause the weaker state to drag the stronger state down with it. To clarify, the weaker state will then cause the stronger state to pursue policies, thereby sapping its power and making it weaker relative to other states in the system. The current U.S. administration follows a liberal hegemonic stability theory, as was recently articulated in the National Security Strategy of May 20102 2 National Security Strategy 2010: 17 This theoretical perspective is based upon the belief that a hegemon will have the capability to enforce the rules of the system; the will to do so; and a commitment to the system which is perceived as beneficial to the major states. The capability to enforce the rules of the system depends on a large and growing economy; dominance in a leading sector, such as technology or economics; and political power backed up by military power. To induce other states to remain in the hegemonic system, the hegemon will pay the costs of maintaining the system while allow ing some states to free ride. The hegemon will also promote the ideal that a prosperous international economic system with the hegemon at the apex is the most beneficial economic system for all. A third way in which the hegemon appeals to other states is through espousing the belief that its values are univers al and should be shared by all. Finally, the hegemon will either award states that accept its leadership with greater integration or punish those states who challenge its leaders hip through the denying of incentives. Although the hegemonic system will allow the hegemon to dominate the international system in the short term, eventually other states will emerge to challenge the hegemon. This challenge to the hegemon will be a result of the very policies the hegemon championed. For instance, free riders may eventually amass great power due to the not contributing to the burdens of ensure
10 international order, while the hegemon loses power due to bearing the costs of the free rider. Ano ther theory to explain American support of Israel, and the one used for this study, is Liberalism This theory focuses on the actors within states such as the Jewish Diaspora and the Christian Zionist Lobby In particular these actors advocate policies to strengthen American support for Israel which has developed into a strong friendship between Israel and the U.S. In the process of domestic groups such as the Jewish Diaspora and the Christian Zionist Lobby advocating their preferences regarding f oreign c ountries such as Israel, Americans have begun to see Israel as more like us. As a result of these domestic actors in Liberalism, the theory holds that it is not the international system that determines a states preferences but the lobbying forces within the state. This access to policy formation allows d omestic groups to shape policy which is in line with their autonomous preferences. Research Methodology In order to examine the Christian Zionist Lobby in considerable detail, the methodological design for this research is a case study. The type of case study in this research is explanatory, because the research is based on a why question. In utilizing the explanatory case study, it allow s for the independent variable to be traced over time, so as to show how it brings about a change in the dependent variable3 3 Yin 2009: 9 In testing this explanatory case study, operational links were traced and analyzed through the
11 technique known as pattern matching. This technique identifies operational links by compar[i ng] an empirically based pattern with a predicted one4The first case study which focuses on the organizational structure of the Christian Zionists utilizes the organizations identified by Mearsheimer and Walt. These organizations include Christians United for Israel, National Christian Leadership Conference for Israel, Unity Coalition for Israel, Christian Friends of Israeli Communities, Christians Israel Public Action Committee, International Christian Embassy Jerusalem, International Fellowship of Christians and Jews, and Stand for Israel. Data for this these organizations was acquired from the individual Christian Zionist websites, as well as t he Better Business Bureau (BBB) 5, and Internal Revenue Service (IRS)6In the search for evidence, this case study attempted to draw out the casual connections between U.S. politicians associated with Christian Zionism and the American policy shift from the Road Map to Israeli unilateralism. These connections were sought in order to demonstrate how the Christian Zionist Lobby directly shapes policy through its support for particular politicians. The politicians include d were those named by the Christian Zionists groups on their website or by Mearsheimer and Walt. These politicians were then paired with the following search terms in the Google News Archive Where applicable, data from the organizations social networking sites was also included. 7 4 Yin 2009: 136 : unilateralism, unilateral disengagement, road map, disengagement plan, Gaza expulsi on plan, hitnatkut (disengagement) separation wall, security fence, and security barrier. 5 This source was c hosen because it track s businesses records of delivering results in accordance with BBB standards, which focus on how businesses should tr eat the public. 6 This source was c hosen because it could confirm whether a business was correctly listed as charity, lobby, etc. 7 This source was c hosen because it provides a historical overview of relevant articles from a number of sources.
12 Data recording monetary contributions to U.S. politicians was sought by visiting opensecrets.org. This website tracks financial contributions made to U.S. politicians by lobbying groups. In this research, opensecrets.org was contacted to see if they could provide an individual listing of pro-Israeli organizations by industry. They responded that they could do this work, but at cost $125 per hour. Due to financial con straints this research was unable to include an individual listing of pro-Israeli groups by industry. Yet, this research project was able to include opensecrets.orgs data on combined campaign committees and leadership public action committees (PACs) by the pro-Israel industry. Evidence for the second case study which was the shift from the Road Map to Israeli unilateralism came in the form of document analysis where media materials were collected through the Google News Archive search engine. The search terms imputed into Google were the following: Christians United for Israel, National Christian Leadership Conference for Israel, Unity Coalition for Israel, Christian Friends of Israeli Communities, Christians Israel Public Action Committee, International Christian Embassy Jerusalem, International Fellowship of Christians and Jews, Stand for Israel ; as well as the more generic search terms of Christian lobby, Christian Zionists, Christian Right, and evangelical lobby The generic search terms were included so as not to omit any important evidence. These search terms were then individually paired with the terms unilateralism, unilateral disengagement, road map, disengagement plan, Gaza expulsion plan, hitnatkut, separation wall, security fence, and security barrier8The search engine used was the Google News Archive, since its web crawler is able to collect a large number of primary and secondary sources. The Google News Archive search engine returned articles from both freely accessible websites and 8 These te rms were chosen after deliberating what would be the most comprehensive ways to identify the dependent variable.
13 websites which required a fee to view their content. For the websites which required a fee to view their content, the Access World News database was used. This databas e was utilized because it was not feasible to purchase several different user licens es to view the vast array of search results that Google News Archive returned. Instead, through using this database, all fee based content was viewed in one place without purchasing a license. However, it must be admitted that while the Access World News d atabase has archived content from over 2,000 different media sources, there was an extremely small number of articles that it did not have archived. As a result of the very small number of articles not found, and the fact that many of them repeated content that I had cataloged elsewhere, I did not seek to include them as evidence in this research. This second case study was bracketed to the dates of June 24, 2002 through September 18, 2006. The first date indicated the day the Road Map to Peace was presented by President Bush, while the second date was the day Prime Minister Olmert officially abandoned the unilateral disengagement policy. However, as the authors note, serious movement on the Road Map did not occur until March 7, 2003. Finally, to ground the second case study to the time period under study, a Google News archive search was conducted with the words road map, U.S., America, and Israel. The search results were isolated by using only The Guardian newspaper archive. This random newspaper selection was chosen simply to narrow down the vast quantity of web hits that the search returned.
14 CHAPTER II LITERATURE REVIEW T he literature found that the Christian Zionists do not share the same policy preferences as the rest of the Israel Lobby. While both the neocons ervatives and Jewish Diaspora sought to maintain a secure Israel as a territorially bound state, the Christian Zionists pursued Israeli policies to fulfill religious prophecy. Thus, as a result of thi s literature review, this research developed a better explanation of American policy toward Israel by isolating the Christian Zionists and understanding them as their own lobby. The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy The crux of this research centers on the contentions claims made by John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt. Accordingly, this literature review focuses on the actors the authors identify as seeking to influence U.S. policy toward Israel, otherwise known as the Israel Lobby. Mearsheimer and Wal t argue the Israel Lobby is a powerful interest group, made up both Jews and gentiles, whose acknowledged purpose is to press Israels case within the United States and influence American foreign policy in ways that its members believe will benefit the Jewish state9 9 Mearsheimer and Walt 2007: 5 Mearsheimer and Walt argue that through influencing American Middle Eastern policy in favor of the Jewish state, the Israel lobby
15 has actually harmed U.S. and Israeli interests in the region10. In fact, the authors believe the Israel lobby has been more successful than any other special interest group in managing to distort U.S. foreign policy in ways that are inimical to American national interest11To Mearsheimer and Walt, the Israel lobby cannot be described as a single monolithic entity Instead the authors more loosely define the Israel lobby as anyone who works actively to preserve Americas special relationship with the Jewish state 12 The authors claim that Jewish Americans lobby for policies beneficial to Israel with the mindset that their lobbying efforts will also benefit America .The authors identify some of the major actors who seek to advance U S. foreign policy in favor of Israel including: members of the media, scholars, Jewish Americans, Jewish civic associations (e.g. American Israel Public Affairs Committee), pro-Israel think thanks and PACs (e.g. Washington Institute for Near East Policy and the American Friends of Israel PAC, respectively), neoconservatives (e.g. Richard Perle), and Christian Zionists (e.g. Pat Robertson). While the members of these various groups all seek a similar objective, they exercise their influence through a variety of ways 13. Jewish civic associations such as the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Orga nizations are one component of the Israel lobby This particular group is composed of fifty -one of the largest and most important Jewish civic organizations. The stated mission of this Jewish association is to forg[e] diverse groups into a unified force for Israels well being and working to strengthen and foster the special U.S.-Israel relationship14 10 Mearsheimer and Walt 2007: 112 Another component of the Israel lobby is the Pro-Israel think tanks which 11 Mearsheimer and Walt 2007: 8 12 Mearsheimer and Walt 2007: 114 13 Mearsheimer and Walt 2007: 148 14 Mearsheimer and Walt 2007: 117
16 serve to shap[e] the prevailing climate of ideas15. Additionally, pro-Israel PACs work to reward or punish politicians based upon their support of Israel16The neoconservatives (or neocons) within the Israel Lobby pursue hawkish policies, which they believe will benefit both the U.S. and Israel 17. The neocons in the 1980s align ed with Reagans tough anti -communist stance and found that their interests converged with the shared liberal democratic values of Israel18. Over time this neoconservative network grew, with those who embrace their approach now being found in academia, the media, government, think tanks, and various lobbies. Finally, due to many within the neocon movement having a Jewish ethnic background and close relations with Israel, many critics have claimed that they care more about Israel than the U S.19T he authors identify as the Christian Zionists as t he last prominent group within the Israel lobby. This group found its ranks galvanized by the outcome of the 1967 Six Day War, as they saw the Israeli victory as a sign from God. In response to this outcome, the Chris tian Zionist movement began to coalesce around evangelical concerns, among which was support for Israel. The authors note several Christian Zionist organizations in support of Israel, including Christians United for Israel, National Christian Leadership Conference for Israel, Unity Coalition for Israel, Christian Friends of Israeli Communities, Christians Israel Public Action Committee, International Christian Embassy Jerusalem, International Fellowship of Christians and Jews, and Stand for Israel. Despite revealing claims that label the Christian Zionists as Israels ultimate 15 Mearsheimer and Walt 2007: 175 16 Mearsheimer and Walt 2007: 117 17 Mearsheimer and Walt 2007: 131 18 Ibid. 19 Mearsheimer and Walt 2007: 131
17 strategic asset20 or Netanyahus claim that Israel is dependent on the Christian Zionists21, Mearsheimer and Walt cha racterize the Christian Zionists as a junior partner22 and as an adjunct to the Israel lobby23In understating the Christian Zionists in relation to the pro-Israel Jewish groups, the authors note a survey from the 1980s showing little evidence of direct lobbying by the Christian Zionists on the subject of Israel 24. They also note the lack of financial power the Christian Zionists have in relation to pro-Israel Jewish groups25. Another reason the authors believe the Christian Zionists to be unequal is that Christian groups receive less media attention than the pro-Israel Jewish groups when speaking on the matter of Middle East politics26In the second half of their book, Mearsheimer and Walt conduct five case studies to test their thesis. To this researcher, the case studies conducted by Mearsheimer and Walt are the weakest part of their work. The case studies concluded in The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy lack the casual mechanisms to definitely show the Israel Lobby having any affect on policy outcomes. Moreover, the Christian Zionists are largely absent from the case studies Mearsheimer and Walt conclude. Evidence of this type seems strong enough for the authors to accept the Christian Zionists as secondary to the Jewish groups, yet important enough to be subsumed under the broad categorization of the Israel lobby. In particular, in the chapter titled Th e Lobby Versus the Palestinians, Mearsheimer and Walt place considerable emphasis on the Road Map to Peace and the 20 Mearsheimer and Walt 2007: 133 21Ibid. 22 Mearsheimer and Walt 2007: 132 23 Mearsheimer and Walt 2007: 139 24 Ibid. 25 Ibid. 26 Ibid.
18 subsequent American policy shift to su pport unilateralism. The authors claim that President George W. Bush, knowing a settlement to the Israeli -Palestinian conflict was in Americas best interest, set forth the outline to the Road Map to Peace in a speech on June 24, 2002. This speech was particularly meaningful for two reasons. First, it set out the position stating that Yasser Arafat would have to step down as leader of the Palestinians if peace was to move forward, and there was eventually going to be a viable Palestinian state. The second meaningful point of the speech was that Bush ur ged the parties to the conflict to create a Palestinian state by 2005. In achieving this aim, the Israelis would have to halt all settlement activity in the occupied territories. Furthermore, the Israelis would have to gradually rescind their control over the occupied territories as the security situation improved. President Bush began to actively promote the Road Map on March 14,, 2002, which was a week after Arafat resigned as leader of the Palestinian Authority. The Quartet, whose members included the U S. the United Nations, Russia, and the European Union, presented the final details of the Road Map on April 30, 2002. Despite the efforts of Bush to directly engage himself in the peace process, the Road Map made little headway. The authors blame the lack of traction in implementing the Road Map to Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and the Israel Lobby who supported him. Mearsheimer and Walt present several points of evidence allegedly demonstrating that the Israel Lobby frustrated efforts to implement the Road Map, and caused the U.S. to support Israeli unilateralism. On e way in which the authors note the Israel Lobby influenced U.S. policy was through Mort Zuckerman, the chairman of the Conference of Presidents, labeling the Road Map to Peace the road map to nowhere27 27 Mearsheimer and Walt 2006: 213
19 The Israel Lobby also sought to influence the Road Map to Peace through voicing criticism at a White House meeting with Condoleezza Rice28To put additional pressure on Bush, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) drafted a letter that it circulated on Capitol Hill calling for Bush to scale down the pressure he was applying to Israel and to require the Palestinians to fully meet the Road Maps security conditions before Israel would be required to concede anything 29. This letter was eventually signed by a total of 368 congressmen, including all but fifteen from the Senate. While AIPAC would eventually lend conditional support to the Road Map, it did not seek to promote it. This lack of backing by AIPAC leads Mearsheimer and W alt to reason that since AIPAC did not campaign for the peace plan, it allowed other pro -Israel groups to torpedo the Road Map30. According to the authors, the Israeli government had also been assured by two neocons working within the National Security Council that the United States would not come to bear pressure on Israel over the Road Map31When Israel began constructing the security fence within the occupied territories, the Bush administration again attempted to exert pressure on the Jewish state. A ccording to the Israelis the fence was being constructed to stop the influx of Palestinian suicide bombers. While there may have been some truth to this reasoning, the fact that the fence in many places was being constructed within the Palestinian side of the green line raised questions as to whether Israel was trying to expropriate territory. In response to growing unease within the White House over the fence, the Bush administration threatened to withhold $9 billion in loan guarantees to Israel. Supporters 28 Ibid. 29 Ibid. 30 Mearsheimer and Walt 2007: 214 31 Ibid.
20 of Israel in Congress did not take this threat sitting down and ensured Israel that they would receive the full loan guarantees32To further thwart the Road Map and move toward their preferred policy of unilateralism, the Israelis again mobilized the Is rael lobby. In this instance it was felt in the form of Elliot Abrams who met with Ariel Sharon in Rome 33. At this secret meeting in Rome the Israeli leader informed Abrams that he would be pursuing unilateralism instead of the Road Map. While the Palestinians could claim the Gaza Strip, a large portion of the West Bank would become part of Israel proper34. As the authors note, this policy would dictate what the Palestinians would receive, meaning in the end they would not have their own state35Presumably, an influencing factor in the U.S. accepting Israeli policy change was Abrams. For the authors identify Abrams as belonging to the Israel Lobby, as well as being a prominent neoconservative and director of the Near East and North African Affairs on the Nati onal Security Council. Through this tenuous evidence and the facts laid out above, Mearsheimer and Walt argue that the Israel Lobby influenced America to discard the Road Map. Mearsheimer and Walt note that the Conference of Presidents, which is part of the Israel lobby, backed the unilateralist shift, with between 60 and 75 percent of the proIsrael leaders viewing it favorably36 32 Mearsheimer and Walt 2007: 216 This data is contrasted against polling results which show that 55 percent of Americans had a favorable view of the Road Map, and when 33 Mearsheimer and Walt 2007: 217 34 Mearsheim er and Walt 2007: 217 35 Ibid. 36 Mearsheimer and Walt 2007: 219
21 given more information the level of support rose to 74 percent37Despite these intense efforts by the Israel Lobby, the unilateralist policy by Israel was not to last. After withdrawing from and isolating the Gaza Strip, the Israelis faced rocket attacks from Gaza and had two of their soldiers kidnapped by Hezbollah. These acti ons caused the Israelis to reassess their unilateralist policy. In the end, the Israelis came to the realization that if they withdrew from the West Bank they would face many of the same problems as they did in Gaza and southern Lebanon Thus, the authors claim the Israel lobby was able to effectively mobilize against American public opinion, and influence American foreign policy in support of unilateralism. 38 Accordingly, the Israelis shifted their policy back to negotiating a two state solution with the Palestinians The Neoconservatives Before the publication of The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy much of the scholarly focus on the neoconservative movement was not as part of the Israel Lobby, but rather as a standa lone actor Joel Beinin takes this view when arguing that it is not the case that Israel and its Jewish supporters in the second Bush administration have somehow hijacked U.S. Middle East policy to promote a war with Iraq39 37 Mearsheimer and Walt 2007: 227 Instead, he argues there is an overlap between the interests of neo-conservatives and the pro-Israel lobby. The overlap was found in the Bush administrations desire to impose its hegemonic ambitions on the world, whereas the pro-Israel lobby sought to exploit Bushs agenda to further 38 Mearsheimer and Walt 2007: 220 39 Beinin 2003
22 Israels interests40Beinin notes how the neocon think tank Project for a New American Century (PNAC) attempted to influence American foreign policy formulation through sending a letter to President Clinton in 1998 advocating that the U.S. attack Iraq. When Clinton did not act upon their call, PNAC sent letters to the Republican Speaker of the House and Senate Majority Leaders, asking them to advocate a war with Iraq. Although the letters to the influential Republican Congressmen did not bring about the desired change in policy, PNAC was able to gain passage of the Iraq Liberation Act in 1998, which announced the switch in US Iraq policy from disarmament to regime change Beinin argues Americas foreign policy is not only driven by the Israel lobby, but also through the neoconservatives who seek to influence U.S. policy. 41Finally the author states how those of the neo-conservative persuasion and the Israeli lobby converged with the election of George W. Bus h. Richard Perle in being named to the Defense Policy Board of the second Bush administration argued that regardless of a lack of evidence connecting Saddam Hussein to the 9/11 attacks, Iraq should be considered as part of the War on Terror 42. WINEP and the neocon administration also pursued an Israeli policy which did not require Israel to negotiate with the Palestinians because the conditions were not right, all the while allowing the Jewish state to continue creating facts on the ground43Kathleen Christison focuses on the forces that shaped Bushs policy toward Israel. The author notes how those of the neoconservative persuasion have long had an In sum, Beinin claims the neocons pursued an Israel policy that would further American hegemony, while also furthering Israeli interests. 40 Ibid. 41 Ibid. 42 Ibid. 43 Ibid.
23 interest in reshaping the Middle East, dating back to the Reagan administration. The neocons have long sought to overturn the Oslo process, for they believed it was weakening Israel through territorial concessions44. The neoconservatives have also sought to implement their policy preferences through think tanks, which offer pro-Israel, hawkish advice to policymakers. Further, many of those who belong to the neoconservative persuasion can be found in crucial areas of government. As evidence, the author states that neoconservative theoreticians worked within the subcabinet level of the second Bush administration. These individuals drafted policy, which was then endorsed and carried out by the neocons at the senior levels of government45While it is has been shown that the neoconservatives seek to influence the American government in support of Israel, more should be drawn out as to why the neocons hold this preference. Max Boot, himself a neoconservative, claims the common thread of the neocon movement has been advocacy of aggressive and, if necessary, unilateral action by the United States to promote democracy, human rights, and free markets and to maintain U.S. primacy around the world 46. Boot draws out how the term neocon has becom e synonymous with the term Jew simply because some members of the movement are Jewish. Boot claims this should not imply that the neoconservative movement reflects an ethnic tie. Instead the author claims neoconservativism should be seen as an ideological position. Yet critics continue to relate the two terms, allowing for the old dual loyalties canard to be resurrected. This dual loyalties charge was most pronounced with the invasion of the Iraq War, with some critics charging the neocons of doing Israel s bidding47 44 Christison 2004: 42 45 Christison 2004: 44 46 Boot 2004: 20 47 Boot 2004: 22
24 The author states that instead of seeing defense of Israel in religious or ethnic terms, it should be understood as defending shared liberal democratic values. Further, the author claims defense of Israel is justified as the American public supports the Jewish state. This supposed support stems from the appreciation Americans have for Israel as the only democracy in the Middle East and the knowledge that we share the same enemies48Kevin MacDonald argues the neocons have been influenced by Straussian ideals to pursue democracy promotion in the Middle East. One such ideal advocated by Strauss is the adoption of the in-group/out-group languages. According to the author, Strauss believed that to communicate to out-groups an exoteric language should be adopted to frame issues as a larger public concern 49. Internally the exclusive group would use an esoteric language to communicate their real interest to one another50. For example, Michael Lind has brought attention to the neocons ex oteric language in calling for democracy promotion, while embracing the Straussian esoteric views of democracy by rule of the manipulative elite51. Neoconservatives have applied this doublespeak in supporting the democratic state of Israel and its apartheid-like policies T he author claims that in Israel democracy is little more than an instrument of ethnic warfare rather than an expression of Western universalism52In further efforts to deceive the public, MacDonald claims the neocons within the Office of Special Plans in the Department of Defense, used the mass appeal language of weapons of mass destruction and Al -Qaeda to frame the conflict with Iraq. The neocons included in this deception were Abram Shulsky, Paul Wolfowitz, and Douglas 48 Ibid. 49 Ibid. 50 MacDonald 2005: 170 51 MacDonald 2005: 171 52 Ibid.
25 Feith. MacDonald mentions that Shulsky received his Ph.D. under Strauss, while Feith was a longtime member of the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs and the Zionist Organization of America. The author claims the disinformation crafted by this department was more readily acc eptable than selling the war to the American public as an attempt to achieve Israeli foreign policy aims53Gary Leupp adds to the neocon literature with his claim that within America there is a sizeable amount of the population who believes the U.S. shoul d transform the Middle East and guarantee Israels security based upon a reading of the book of Revelations. As a result of the strong religious fervor surround eschatological beliefs neoconservatives have found it beneficial to manipulate the language of religion in order to implement their chosen policy preferences 54 Ultimately this framing of policy has little to do with religion, and more properly should be understood in terms of the neocons view that American and Israeli interests are nearly identical. The Jewish Diaspora Another group Mearsheimer and Walt identify as belonging to the Israel Lobby is the American Jewry. This is certainly not a homogenous group in regards to policy preferences toward Israel. Theodore Sasson frames the topic of the Jewish Diaspora through that of lobbying. He asserts that since 1993 most lobbying on behalf of Israel occurred through a direct engagement model. This method of lobbying departed from mass mobilization as the dominant means of lobbying since 1948. As a result of the shift 53 MacDonald 2005: 172 54 Ibid.
26 in lobbying practices, organizations no longer felt the requirement to mirror the policy of Israel and instead sought to further their own preferences. Sasson states that between 1948 and 1993 the Israel lobby sought to influence Congress for the purpose of seeing Israeli and American interests as shared. This framing of interest allowed for the Jewish Diaspora to press Congress to support military and economic aid to Israel in an effort to keep them safe from the surrounding totalitarian countries. While there were sources of contention within the Jewish diasporic lobby, as a whole they tended to support U.S. policies that were favorable to the Jewish state55The shift in policy stance after 1993 occurred as a result of the Oslo Accords and Netanyahus trip to the U.S. to rally Jewish opposition. The right-wing Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) was the first and most ardent supporter of Netanyahus case during his trip to the U.S. The ZOA actively lobbied the U.S. congress to attach condi tions to any assistance to the Palestinian Authority, which was against the wishes of both the Israel government and pro-Israel U.S. groups. Since the Oslo Accords and the Netanyahu trip, groups within the Israel Lobby from both the left and right have been less hesitant to lobby for policies that Israel itself may not favor 56John Newhouse focuses on the impact of foreign lobbyists on foreign policies that are beneficial to their home state. The author notes how the use of foreign lobbyists to achieve foreign policy aims reflects a growing trend in the privatization of diplomacy 57 55 Sasson 2010: 175 Newhouse claims one reason for the decline in traditional diplomacy may be that foreign lobbyists have the ability to identify with a domestic ethnic bloc that has a 56 Sasson 2010: 177 57 Newhouse 2009
27 significant influence in shaping U.S. foreign policy58. These lobbying groups can also be understood as surrogates of the mother country who are able to put forth uncomfortable arguments and arrangements on Capitol Hill, which the mother country through traditional di plomacy cannot59The ability of foreign lobbyists to navigate the American political system is a result of the open trade and investment climate that they help to promote 60. Foreign lobbyists claim that their work is indistinguishable from that of domestic lobbyists, a point which Newhouse openly refutes. As the author notes, lobbying by foreign firms can serve to challeng[e] the sensible and balanced formation of foreign policy61Newhouse states AIPAC is the very best lobbying group that aims to change U.S. foreign policy. Although not registered as a foreign lobby, AIPAC has been able to influence American foreign policy in support of Israel through a variety of methods. These methods include playing off internal rivalries within Congress and Congressio nal committees, prompting members to inundate Congressmen with angry calls, and making reelection campaigns difficult for those Congressmen who do not vote in accordance with their preferences 62As a potential counter to the power of AIPAC within the Israe l lobby, a newer domestic group called J -Street has emerged to advocate a pro-Israel, pro-peace position 63 58 Ibid. However, the ability of J -Street to change American foreign policy towards Israel in a more pro-peace direction faces an uphill battle for several r easons. First, Congressmen on Capitol Hill have become conditioned to acting in favor of the wishes of 59 Ibid. 60 Ibid. 61 Ibid. 62 Ibid. 63 Ibid.
28 AIPAC, who are considered the professionals of Washington politics. Second, the members of AIPAC are much more numerous than those of J -Street and tend to favor hard-line positions. Third, there is a deep fear of Arab intentions, causing most Jews to favor AIPACs more hawkish policies64Be inin also acknowledges that AIPAC is a significant force in American Middle Eastern policy, especially after the 1967 Six -Day War 65While this report by itself did not cause a fundamental shift in U.S. policy towards Israel, the author notes that six members of the committee which drafted the report joined the first Bush administration. Hence, the author states that after the first Gulf War, when the first Bush administration sought to reward its Arab allies for their cooperation through the settlement of the Arab-Israeli conflict, the U.S. did not force Israel to negotiate with the PLO He also sees the founding of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP) in 1985 as an important organization that influences Middle East policy This importance began with WINEP publishing its 1988 report titled "Building for Peace: An American Strategy for the Middle East." This report, which was prepared for the incoming president, advocated not engaging the Palestinians until conditions were fully in Israels favor. 66. The author also remarks that WINEP has been successful in advocating the belief to the American government that Israel is not a liability in the spread against Islamism but in fact is a reliable ally67The author goes on to demonstrate how WINEP has been involved in advancing the cause of Israel within subsequent administrations. For example, Beinin discusses how former WINEP member Martin Indyk became the Special Assistant to the President 64 Ibid. 65 Ibid. 66 Ibid. 67 Ibid.
29 and Senior Director for Near East and South Asian Affairs at the National Security Council for President Clinton68Mahmood Mamdani in looking for causal explanations to explain the U.S. support for Israel claims scholars have begun to look more closely at the influence of the Israel Lobby. He states that while critics have traditionally looked at oil as the driving force of American foreign policy in the Middle East, Israel after 9/11 has become a central explanation to U.S. policy in the region Indyk is probably best known for the policy drafted while at WINEP known as dual containment. Once Indyk was officially working for the Clinton administration this policy was implemented for the purpose of isolating two of Americas enemies during the 1990s, Iran and Iraq. In relation, this policy also served to contain Israels two most dangerous adversaries. 69Mamdani claims the most powerful groups within the Israel lobby are AIPAC and the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. These groups and others within the lobby function as an ethnic donor machine which coordinate around economic and social issues, as opposed to just organizing behind particular candidates The author notes as the costs of Americas Israel policy have increased over the years, it has become increasingly difficult to rationalize how it is beneficial to U.S. interests. 70 68 Ibid. In addition to using their power to influence economic and social issues, the Israel lobby seeks to appoint representative friendly to their interests within government. For example, Mamdani notes the appointments of long term veterans of the 69 Mamdani 2004: 6 70 Mamdani 2004: 7
30 U.S. and Israeli defense and foreign policy establishments, Richard Perle and Douglas Feith, to positions of influence over Israel policy within the second Bush administration71 Christian Zionists The final group Mearsheimer and Walt identify as belonging to the Israel Lobby are Christian Zionists. Donald Wagner illustrates the detailed history of the interactions between Christian Zionism and the U.S. government starting with the Christian Zionist William Blackstone This prominent Christian Zionist organized a major newspaper campaign in 1891 with a petition signed by 400 prominent Americans. The campaign, which preceded Theodor Herzls World Zionist Congress by six years, called for President Harrison to create a Jewish national homeland in Palestine72Yaakov Ariel details the history of Christian Zionism, and claim s its earliest traces can be found in seventeenth century with Protestant Messianic groups. These particular Protestants tended to read the bible literally, and thus believed that the Jews needed to restore the kingdom of Israel Thus, Wagner claims that America Christian Zionists have an extensive history of seeking to recreate biblical Israel through lobbying public officials. 73 71 Ibid. According to the author, in the nineteenth century Christian Messianism split between the historical and futurist branches. While both groups agreed that God had a special plan for Jews in the holy land and that Christian Messianic groups should be involved with conversion efforts involving Jews, Christian Zionists differed as to when the end times would actually occur. The historical branch 72 Wagner 2005: 229 73 Ariel 2006: 75
31 focused on identifying current events within the biblical passages, while the futurist branch saw Gods plan as still being played out. Ev entually the futurist branch would become the leading view of Christian Zionism, especially in America74The author expounds on this futurist branch, or the premillenialist dispensationalists, stating these followers believe in the last days all those who committed themselves to Jesus will be saved in the rapture. In addition to these individuals, all those who died before the rapture are to rise from the dead and meet with Jesus in heaven. These individuals will come to stay with Jesus for seven years (or three and a half years by some accounts), while those on Earth experience the evils of the anti -Christ. During the time both the Christians and Jesus are away from Earth, the Jews will return to Israel without accepting Jesus and instead accept the anti -Ch rist as their ruler. When Jesus eventually returns to Earth, premillenialist believe he will battle with and defeat the anti -Christ, causing some Jews to accept him as the savior. Ultimately, by the end of the battle about two-thirds of humanity will have been killed 75Paul S. Boyer claims evangelicals saw the second Bush administrations foreign policy as the catalyst to the divine plan. This claim reflects polling showing over forty percent of Americans believing there is a divine plan that will occur sequentially .In accordance with this belief, premillenialist supporters see any move to trade land for peace as a move against Gods divine plan. 76 74 Ariel 2006: 76 In anticipation of the end of days, dispensationalist Christians throughout history have identified many different leaders and institutions as the embodiment of the anti -Christ. This list includes Saladin, the Soviet Union, Saddam Hussein, the European Union, and 75 Ibid. 76 Boyer 2005: 198
32 the United Nations77. The author believes the strong religious beliefs within the United States inspired George W. Bush to frame American foreign policy in theological terms in order to galvanize support amongst evangelicals. It is claimed this framing expressed to evangelicals their desirable belief that they were living in the final stages of history78Colin Shindler traces the evolution of the Christian Zionist movement, noting how early dispensationalist thinking broke with the traditional und erstanding of the church being the new Israel 79. Viewing the church as the new Israel was based upon the belief that the Jews had been exiled from Israel and were unlikely to return in the future. This dispensationalist view was eventually altered and ins tead it was posited that the while the church remained favored in Gods eye, the Jews would remain a chosen people. To the dispensationalists, when the Messiah ultimately returned and many Jews were converted to Christianity, the Jewish character of Jesus millennial reign will be paramount and the Churchs role would be almost secondary80Melani McAlister argues that there is an emerging consensus between traditional religious social conservatism and evangelical radical liberalism which sees the end-time s prophecies as imminent and Israel as the central component in the end of days. In viewing these apocalyptic prophecies as happening in their midst, the Christian Right have called for close ties with Israel and support for the Jewish states Middle East policy. While championing support for Israel is not new amongst the Christian Right, the author claims that within the second Bush administration contemporary Christian 77 Boyer 2005: 19899 78 Boyer 2005: 202 79 Ibid. 80 Shindler 2000: 157
33 Zionists seemed to be more successful than past attempts at influencing Middle East pol icies81McAlister traces the importance of American evangelicalism back to John Darby and the Scofield Reference Bible. The author notes this particular bibles interpretations provided generations of evangelicals with the belief that the bibles accuracy can be tested against political developments 82Eventually the prophecy holds that there will be a mass conversion of Jews as they come to realize that Jesus is the true Messiah. Israel will then face the most powerful nations of the world, who will have grouped together to destroy the Jewish nation. Before the ultimate battle occurs, the bible holds that Jesus will return to defeat the anti -Christ, ushering in one thousand years of peace In particular, these developments are contrasted against events involving Israel as the bible predicts that the Jews will return to their homeland, an anti -Christ will emerge, and both Jews and Christians wi ll be killed for their beliefs. 83Robert O. Smith explores the theological influences on the relationship between I srael and the United States. The author gives particular attention to Christian Zionism and its relationship with American Jews. This special relationship has enabled a successful lobbying campaign since it frames the Jewish ethnic groups policy in terms of American values that are consistent with U.S. national interest 84 81 McAlister 2003: 775 82 McAlister 2003: 778 83 McAlister 2003: 779 84 Smith 2004: 835
34 The author notes that Christian support of Israel has a long history dating back to the days of the early church85. Occurring in the mid-nineteenth century the theological perspective know n as premillenialist dispensationalism supported the restoration of Israel as a homeland for the Jews. Key historical thinkers for the premillenialist dispensationalist movement include and Henry Finch, Louis Way, John Nelson Darby, and C.I. Scofield. Thes e premillenialist thinkers believed that history is divided into distinct eras (dispensations), which are defined by how God interacts with particular groups. The movement holds that in the seventh and final dispensation Jesus will return to defeat evil and rescue His believers86Mark Beeson asserts that the American evangelical movement won the 2000 presidency for George W. Bush, and the movement continues to exert a growing influence over national policy. The author remarks how the evangelical movement p assionately backed George W. Bush because they saw his beliefs as genuine, making him their political and religious leader 87. This deep influence of the evangelical movement in not only selecting the president but also in policy formation is seen as a fo rm of political fundamentalism that is reshaping American politics88The reshaping of American politics was a result of marriage between neoconservatism and evangelicals which brought conflicting goals in relation to Israel. Many of the neocon persuasion share with the evangelical movement deep attachments to Israel and support for a strong Jewish state. However, the neocons do not share the sentiments of the Christian Zionist movement who support Israel as a result of a literal reading of the book of Revelations. These Christian Zionists hold that the kingdom of 85 Smith 2004: 837 86 Ibid. 87 Beeson 2006: 5 88 Beeson 2006: 6
35 Israel needs to be reestablished to initiate the return of Christ, ushering in the end of days and hell on Earth for all unbelievers. While this belief remained an ongoing point of c ontention between neoconservatives and Christian Zionists, these groups remained influential in shaping American support for Israel89 89 Beeson 2006: 11
36 CHAPTER III CASE STUDY I: ORGANIZATIONAL STRUCTURE OF THE CHRISTIAN ZIONIST LOBBY Findings Of the seven Christian Zionist organizations under study, four had a 501(c)(3) listing with IRS. According to the IRS website this meant these organizations cannot use their earnings to inure to any private shareholder or individual. In addition, it may not be an action organization, i.e., it may not attempt to influence legislation as a substantial part of its activities and it may not participate in any campaign activity for or against political candidates90 The key word in this description is substantial. This word alone means that these organizations can to a degree lobby some politicians, but they cannot incorporate too much lobbying into their activities91 Amongst the Christian Zionists Lobby the most common form of lobbying was mass mobilization. The Christian Zionists groups in this study often sent out e-mails, newsletters, or press releases to call on their constituency to contact politicians with proIsrael messages. In making contact with political representatives, the Christian Zionist Lobby hoped to alter American legislation in a pro -Israel direction. While it is hard to measure the amount of influence contacting ones official carries, given that considering Subsequently, these Christian Zionist organiz ations may keep their tax exempt status by engaging in limited attempts at influencing legislation. 90 IRS.gov 91 Ibid.
37 measuring the intent of a public official is impossible, this method of influence should still be considered an important variable. For some mem bers of Congress hold strong religious views and any contact made by their constituents may reinforce these views and prompt them to pursue pro-Israel legislation. Another way in which the Christian Zionist could lobby public officials was to make monetary contributions. While only CIPAC claimed to be an actually lobby, other Christian Zionists individually or collectively make donations to politicians with pro-Israel positions. While the data was unattainable to make precise connections between those donating to PACs and their political recipients, certain broad measures were found. This data can be found in Table 1. Yet, the data from Table 1 does not imply that Pro-Israel donations came exclusively from Christian Zionists. The table does indicate the financial strength of those that the Christian Zionist Lobby counts as allies. Accordingly, the financial contributions to these politicians by Christian Zionists allows for these individuals to remain in areas of influence over Israel policy. These politi cians can then work to alter the interests of America towards Israel through the pursuit of a premillenialist agenda.
38 Another common method of lobbying by Christian Zionist was holding rallies. The impact of this form of lobbying is difficult to measure. Rallies certainly hold the benefit of allowing a group of people to gather to share ideas about how to achieve their common preferences. Rallies also, if impactful enough, can persuade political leaders to change course and pursue an alternate policy. A third outcome of rallies can be that they garner media attention, which in turn may draw more participants to a cause. This media attention could influence politicians with strong religious convictions and persuade them to further premillenialist preferences. In addition, the size of the rallies could be used as evidence to persuade politicians to follow premillenialist preferences Finally it was worth noting that as with the Israel Lobby, the Christian Zionist Lobby is not a homogeneous group. The Christian Zionists Lobby includes both Christians and Jews from a range of denominations. Moreover, support for Christian Table 1: Campaign Committee & Leadership PAC Combined by Pro Israel Industry politician 01 02 03 04 05 06 **Richard Armey 0 N/A N/A ^Shelley Berkley 153,536 122,570 122,750 ^Roy Blunt 5,500 38,350 29,150 **Tom Delay 71,650 82,250 91,450 **James Inhofe 46,550 47,550 51,550 ^Joe Lieberman 230,710 244,486 1,194,640 *in dollars by election cycle **identified as Christian Zionist by Mearsheimer/Walt ^ Associated with CUFI Source : opensecrets.org (online: http://www.opensecrets.org/politicians/index.php)
39 Zionism can be found in both the Democratic and Republican parties. Table 2 provides how these politicians identify both politically and religiously. Table 2: Religions and Parties of Politicians who associate the Christian Zionist Lobby Christians United for Israel According to the CUFI Facebook page, Christians United for Israel was incorporated into John Hagee Ministries in 2006. In addition to seeking out details on the organization structure of CUFI from its website, data from the BBB and IRS websites pertaining to CUFI and John Hagee Ministries was sought. However, the BBB and IRS websites did not have any data on the organizational structure of CUFI or John Hagee Ministries. politician religion party **Richard Armey Methodist Rep. *Shelley Berkley Jewish Dem. *Roy Blunt Baptist Rep. **Tom Delay Baptist Rep. **James Inhofe Presbyterian Rep. *Joe Lieberman Jewish Indep. *associated with CUFI **identified as Christian Zionist by Mearsheimer/Walt Source : Re ligious Affiliations of U.S. Congress (online: http:www.adherents.com/adh_congress.html)
40 The relevant information provided by the CUFI website was in regards to the organizations statement of purpose, goals and objectives, and associations with religious and political leaders. The website states CUFIs purpose is to provide a national association through which every pro-Israel church, parachurch organization, ministry or individual in America can speak and act with one voice in support of Israel in matters related to Biblical issues92. The national association that is CUFI grew from a 2006 meeting involving 400 Christian leaders discussing how best to respond to threats against Israel. Since this time CUFI has become the largest pro-Israel organization in the United States and one of the leading Christian grassroots movements in the world93. This includes having church memberships in all fifty states. CUFI also organizes proIsrael events throughout the year, as well as a Washington Summit to make their voices heard in support of Israel and the J ewish people94 The CUFI website lists its first goal is to educate Christians about the Biblical and moral imperatives about supporting Israel 95. The second listed goal is to communicate Pro-Israel perspectives to our neighbors, newspapers and elected officials96 Religious leaders associated with CUFI according to the website are Gary Bauer, Jonathan P. Falwell, Keith A Butler, David Brog, Mac Hammond, Michael Little, and John C. Hagee. American Political leaders posting endorsements of CUFI on the or ganizations website include Joseph Lieberman, Shelley Berkley, and Roy Blunt. 92 http://www.cufi.org/site/PageServer 93 Ibid. 94 Ibid. 95 Ibid. 96 Ibid.
41 National Christian Leadership Conference for Israel The National Christian Leadership Conference for Israel (NCLCI) is listed as a 501(c)(3) charity on the IRS website. However, there are no records of the NCLCI on the BBB website. Also, the NCLCI website was down for two weeks before recently becoming operational again. Efforts to explain the inaccessibility of the NCLCI website were unsuccessful, while the media materials search indicated the organization is still active. The NCLCI website describes the organization as being active in local events on Israel, the Holocaust and ChristianJewish relations97. The website claims the NCLCI issues public statements regarding important events surrounding Israel. The website also state the NCLCI seeks to further its preferences through making presentations at national conferences, publishing papers, monitoring denominational publications for inaccurate reporting, and conducting fact-f inding missions in Israel98 Unity Coalition for Israel The Unity Coalition for Israel (UCI) is listed as a 501(c)(3) charity on the IRS website. Yet there are no records of the UCI on the BBB website. The UCI website states UCI was founded in July 1991 through an alliance of Christian and Jewish organizations as a way of supporting Israel. The website claims that with the organizations 200 autonomous partners it is the largest network of Pro-Israel groups in the world99 97 http://nclci.org/ UCI 98 Ibid. 99 http://www.israelunitycoalition.org/
42 claims these autonomous par tners include churches, synagogues, prayer networks, think tanks and thousands of individuals100The stated mission of UCI is to focus the efforts of secular and religious organizations and individuals for whom the existence of the State of Israel is central and essential to the future of the free world comprising more than 40 million Americans. 101According to the website, UCI furthers its message by holding monthly educational meetings in Washington, D .C. for member organizations and congressional staffers on Capitol Hill, which feature knowledgeable speakers on current issues To further this mission, the website states the UCI regularly contacts the media through e-mail. This media includes 700 religious radio stations, 245 Christian TV stations, and all secular media. In addition UCI contacts secular newspapers and magazines, 120 Christian newspapers, and 70 Jewish newspapers. 102. The organization also publishes pro-Israel resolutions and policy statements/position papers on current critical issues103. Finally, UCI holds press conferences on dominant issues in the Capitol, at the National Press Club and at the National Religious Broadcasters annual convention with leaders of national stature104 Christian Friends of Israeli Communities The Christian Friends of Israeli Communities is listed as a 501(c)(3) charity on the IRS website. The BBB website provided the most basic contact information and listed the 100 Ibid. 101 Ibid. 102 Ibid. 103 Ibid. 104 Ibid.
43 CFOIC as a non-profit organization. The CFOIC website states the organization was founded in 1995 in response to the Oslo Process. The organization saw these moves as devastating, since they gave Jewish lands to the Arabs. The CFOIC in response to any territorial conciliatory moves by Israel works to support Jewish communities in order to fulfill Biblical prophecy. The mission of the CFOIC is to build bridges of love and mutual respect between Christians and Jews105 These bridges may include the CFOIC adopt-a settlement program which provides financial support for Israeli settlements and projects they undertake. The website claims that thousands of individuals have contributed to this adopt-a -settlement program and made a real difference for these communities. The CFOIC also encourages Christians to visit Jewish communities in Biblical Israel in orde r to become better connected with the people living there. Christians Israel Public Action Committee Christians Israel Public Action Committee (CIPAC) was not listed as a charity on the IRS website. This was to be suspected as the CIPAC website labels the organization as a lobby. However, when searching for CIPAC on opensecrets.org, no listing was found on the website of this organization as a lobby. There was also no listing of the organization on the BBB website. As mentioned, the CIPAC website states that the organization is a registered U.S. lobby. It adds that CIPAC was founded in 1989 by Richard Hellman in order to educate and mobilize Christians to act on behalf of sound laws and policies regarding 105 http://www.cfoic.com/
44 Israel in the U.S. Congress106According to the website CIPAC represents those who wish to see Israel fulfill its biblical prophecy. Thus, as the website claims, If Israel is to survive, no new Palestinian state should be created This mobilization involves a grassroots push for members to write, call, or fax elected officials in support of Israel. 107. This mission, CIPAC claims, sets them apart from other lobbying groups as they are the only ones who clearly oppose a two-state solution, which in effect makes them the completely Pro-Israel Lobby 108 International Christian Embassy Jerusalem The International Christian Embassy Jerusal em (ICEJ) was listed as a charity on the IRS website. When visiting the BBB website there was no listing of the organization. The ICEJ website states it was founded in 1980 by Christians as an act of solidarity with the Jewish peoples claim to Israel. Today the ICEJ claims to represent millions of people from over 125 countries, with active representation in eighty countries and over fifty full time staff. This staff regularly publishes position papers, pamphlets, tapes, DVDs, and other teaching materials in support of Israel. The ICEJ website also states it is the worlds largest Christian Zionist organization. The ICEJ works to comfort Israel, educate the Church, celebrate Gods faithfulness, and confront anti -Semitism109 106 http://www.cipaconline.org/ This mission is carried out through multiple outlets. One such way is through supporting social assistance projects, which include 107 Ibid. 108 Ibid. 109 http://www.icej.org/
45 taking care of the needs of children, elderly, disabled, lone soldiers, new immigrants and needy families within Israel110 The ICEJ is also an active supporter of the aliyah, through sponsoring transport operations to Israel. International Fellowship of Christians and Jews The International Fellowship of Christians and Jews (IFCJ) is listed on the IRS website as 501(c)(3) charity. It also has extensive records on BBB website. According to the BBB, the IFCJ was incorporated in Illinois in 1983. The IFCJ also has affiliates in Canada and Israel. Its stated purpose is "to support and assist institutions providing religious and secular education, social services or charitable aid in the Holy Land of Israel; assist Jews in need around the world; to seek the support of religious communities in the United States and create bridges of cooperation between them; and to create links between American religious communities, the Jewish people and the Holy Land of Israel"111 The BBB lists the chief executive of the IFCJ as Yechiel Eckstein who is paid an annual compensation of $581,411. The board s ize of the IFCJ is sixteen people with the Chair of the Board listed as John P. French and Robert R. Mazer as cochair of the board. The paid staff size of the IFCJ totals fifty -five people. The IFCJ has four programs operating within it. These programs are On Wings of Eagles, Isaiah 58, Guardians of Israel, and Stand for Israel. In 2006 the expenses of these four programs were the following: On Wings of Eagles $18,961,727; Guardians of Israel $16,460,598; Isaiah 58 $12,842,026; and Stand for Israel $319,381. 110 Ibid. 111 BBB.org
46 The methods of fundraising include direct mail, telemarketing, print advertisements, television, radio, internet appeals, planned giving, and cause-related marketing. Fund raising costs in 2006 were 14% of related contributions. The related contributions stemmed from donations received from fund raising activities and totaled $72,616,244. Informational materials and activities cost the IFCJ $31,005,107 in 2006. Out of this total, $17,942,318 went to program expenses; $10,462,683 went to program expenses; and $2,600,106 went to administrative expenses. The major source of funds for the IFCJ in 2006 came from contributions which totaled $72,103,303. Investment income brought in $1,493,988 for the IFCJ, while catalog sales provided additional income of $512,941. Tour, conferences, and other income was the least profitable component of revenue for the IFCJ bringing in $105,079. Following this extensive overview of the IFCJ by the BBB, the organizations website adds very little. The website states Rabbi Eckstein has devoted his life to building bridges between Christian and Jews in support of Israel112. The mission stated on the website is to reverse [the] 2,000-year history of discord [between Christians and Jews] and replace it with a relationship marked by dialogue, understanding, respect and cooperation113 Stand for Isr ael Stand for Israel is easily the most confusing organization to understand out of all the Christian Zionist organizations researched. In fact it may not even be properly categorized as an organization, as the BBB regards it as a program within the IFCJ. Nevertheless, Stand for Israel is not listed on the IRS website. Nor are there records of 112 http://www.ifcj.org/site/PageNavigator/eng/USENG_homenew?cvridirect=true 113 Ibid.
47 Stand for Israel on BBB website. Attempts were also made unsuccessfully to contact Stand for Israel through both e-mail and phone. The link to Stand for Israel is dir ectly linked to the IFCJ website, while its website provides little information about its organizational structure. Mearsheimer and Walt state Stand for Israel was founded in 2002 through an alliance with Ralph Reed and the IFCJ. However, this information is nowhere to be found on the Stand for Israel website. The mission statement that is available on the website and it calls on members to t ranslate love and commitment for Israel and the Jewish people into action114. A statement within the BBB website for the IFCJ states Stand for Israel is an effort to strategically mobilize leadership and grassroots support in the Christian community for the State of Israel115The Stand for Israel website also has a link to make donations This link brings members to a page involving four different groups, one of which is Stand for Israel. A donation to Stand for Israel will support engag[ing] people both spiritually and politically on behalf of Israel and the Jewish people by encouraging them to pray for Israel and teaching them to advocate for the Jewish state This mobilization is done through contacting local officials and informing them that the U.S. should keep strong ties with Israel. The Stand for Israel website also calls on members to ask local officials to meet with their church or civic group to discuss Israel. The website advises members to also educate themselves with their representatives voting record on Israel. Finally, members are instructed to be an advocate through monitoring the media for Israeli bias and then writing e-mails and letters to the media to hold them accountable. 116 114 http://www.ifcj.org/site/PageNavigator/sfi_home The other groups are Guardians for 115 BBB.org 116 Ibid.
48 Israel, Isaiah 58, and Wings of Eagles. A donation to Guardians of Israel will provide food, clothing, shelter, housing and other urgent needs for all Israelis, including children and the elderly, who are suffering due to poverty, terrorism and war117. A donation to Isaiah 58 will provide children and elderly Jews in the former Sov iet Union with food, clothing, heating, and other necessities by funding humanitarian programs throughout the FSU118. A donation to On Wings of Eagles will enable Jews to make aliyah (immigrate to Israel) from around the world, and helps them with their kl itah (resettlement) needs once they arrive in the Holy Land119 117 Ibid. 118 Ibid. 119 Ibid.
49 CHAPTER IV. CASE STUDY II: FROM THE ROAD MAP TO UNILATERLAISM Findings The findings of this case study were unable to neither confirm nor fail to confirm my hypothesis. What this case study displayed was that the Christian Zionism Lobby was opposed to both the Road Map and the Gaza disengagement component of Is raeli unilateralism. In regards to the security fence, there was not a clear lobbying effort to stop its construction by the Christian Zionist Lobby. However, one should be careful not to equate absence of evidence with evidence of absence. In the case of the Road Map there was an overwhelming amount of evidence displaying Christian Zionist opposition to the Road Map. In the case of the security fence there was a minimal amount of evidence showing Christian Zionist support. These displays of evidence are contrasted against the sparse amount of evidence regarding unilateralism, which ultimately leads this research to its inconc lusive conclusions. 2003 In March of 2003, President Bush delivered a speech on his Road Map to Peace that was notable for its silence on the status of Israeli settlements. The day after this speech in which President Bush promised to push the Road Map forward, Prime Minister Ariel
50 Sharon vowed to the Israeli Knesset that settlements would remain in place120The continued push to stifle the Road Map and build settlements in Israel has been assisted by the funding on the American Christian Right. These evangelical groups provide tens of millions of dollars a year to expand settlements in the Occupied Territories This pledge by Sharon, in addition to the ongoing political erosion of the Palestinian Authority (P.A.) and the continued construction of the security wall, worked to undermine the Road Map before it was even officially implemented. 121. When not providing financial support to Israel, Christian Zionists have found it beneficial to provide rhetorical support. Accordingly, the NCLCI in early March 2003 issued a press release calling on the Palestinian Authority to stop making excuses and assume responsibility for their own independent democratic state. The press release went on to further express support for the construction of the security wall, claiming it is every states responsi bility to protect its citizens122Concurrent to these efforts by Christian Zionist Lobby, political leaders such as House Leader Tom Delay also voiced opposition to the Road Map. Speaking to Jewish leaders in March 2003, DeLay claimed Israel has the right to defend itself and should not be forced to accept agreements that put its security at risk 123. He went on to characterize the Quartet members as being more concerned with their popularity amongst Arab leaders than the security of the world124Against the criticisms of Tom DeLay and the Christian Zionist Lobby, the Bush Administration pushed forward the Road Map to Peace. President Bush stated publicly 120 The Guardian: March 4, 2003 121 Asia Times Online: March 6, 2003 122 The National Christian Leadership Conference for Israel: March 8, 2003 123 Israel National News: March 13, 2003 124 Ibid.
51 that once Arafat ceded some power and allowed a new Palestinian Prime Minister to come to power, he would unveil the Road Map. In continuing this quest for a two-state solution, the Palestinians were also to control violence directed against the Israelis, while the Jewish state was to stop settlement construction125While the Quartet claimed the two-state solution would bring peace to the Israelis and Palestinians, U.S. Congressmen associated with Christian Zionism saw the Road Map as a threat to Israels security. In early April 2004, both Democrat and Republican congressman, including some of Bush s allies, voiced their displeasure over the plan. Speaking before Congress, DeLay claimed that "negotiating with these men . is folly, and any agreement arrived at through such empty negotiations would amount to a covenant with death" 126. DeLay would later add that the Road Map is a confluence of deluded thinking between European elites, elements within the State Department bureaucracy and a significant segment of the American intellectual community"127. Dozens of U.S. congressman upset with the Road Map stated that they would send President Bush a letter appealing for him to more firmly back the Sharon government. A key Bush ally and a congressman associated with Christian Zionism by the name of Roy Blunt signed this letter128In the same month, the Chris tian Zionist Lobby remained diligent in opposing the Road Map. In South Carolina, evangelicals who supported strengthening ties to Israel paid for billboard sign along the Ayalon Highway in Israel. The billboard stated "There's no land for peace" 129 125 The Guardian: March 14, 2003 In the United States Pat Robertson went to the TV media to 126 Washington Post: April 4, 2003 127 Washington Post: April 24, 2003 128 Ibid. 129 Counter Punch: April 8, 2003
52 lambast Israeli Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom. Robertsons message to Shalom was: Who do you think you are, handing Jerusalem over to Arafat?"130At a Stand for Israel event in Washington of April 2003, sponsored by the IFCJ, 600 supporters of Israel gathered. At this gathering Tom DeLay was presented with the friend of Israel award 131. Janet Parshall, a popular Christian radio host, addressed the gathering telling the crowd that if she were the president of the U.S. she would classify all Palestinians as enemies of America, take away all Palestinian territory and weapons, dissolve all peace agreements, and eliminate Palestinian refugee camps132. She added that she opposes the dismantling of any Israel settlements and that the Christian community is amongst the groups that thinks Israel should stop giving away land133Despite these vociferous objections by the Christian Zionist Lobby, the unveiling of the two-solution remained on track. For his part, Ariel S haron in the media played the role of peacemaker, who was ready to make painful concessions and deal with the Palestinians 134. Yet, despite portraying himself as a man of peace, Sharon continued to expand the settlements. Sharon also began unilaterally disengaging from the Palestinians through the construction of the security fence before the Road Map was even formally published. Sharon for his part claimed the security fence was the only way to prevent terrorists from entering Israel135After Abu Mazen was finally sworn in as Palestinian Prime Minister in May of 2003, the Road Map was officially unveiled by the White House. Israel immediately claimed that despite pledges by the P.A. to reign in terrorism and curb violence, Hamas 130 Ibid. 131 Dissident Voice: April 12, 2005 132 J Weekly: April 11, 2003 133 Ibid. 134 The Guardian: April 27, 2003 135 Ibid.
53 and Islamic Jihad remained intransigent towards Israel. Toward this end, Israel argued it should not be bound to the original time scale set out in the Road Map or be required to militarily disengage from West Bank towns. Regardless of these objections by Israel, the United States remained on course with the implementation of the Road Map136Israel was not the only party upset with the United States over the Road Map. In America, the Bush administration was met with instantaneous criticism from the Christian Zionist Lobby. The National Unity Coalition for Israel also displayed its displeasure by partnering with another Christian Zionist organization, National Prayer Team, to craft an online petition addressed to President Bush opposing the Road Map. The opposition to the Road Map amongs t Christian Zionists was evident, as the petition registered more than 22,500 signatures 137. More opposition to the Road Map could be found at an interfaith Conference between Christians and Jews where bumper stickers were passed out to the attendees stating pray that President Bush will honor Gods covenant with Israel138. Finally, the Christian Zionists groups also voiced their criticisms to the Road Map in publications such as The Weekly Standard and The Wall Street Journal139In May 2003 Israeli Minister of Tourism Benny Elon took a trip to the United States for the purpose of promoting tourism to Israel. Elon, an outspoken critic of peace with the Palestinians, used the trip to voice his opposition to the Road Map. Elon while in the United States met with prominent Christian Zionists including Tom DeLay and Gary 136 The Guardian: May 1, 2003 137 Baptist Press: May 1, 2003 138 Tuscaloosa News: May 18, 2003 139 Asia Times Online: May 2, 2003
54 Bauer. It was expressed to Bauer by Elon that if there were to be an independent Palestinian state, Israel would be undertaking massive security risks140This belief that Israels security was at risk as a result of the Road Map was later echoed by twenty -two American Christian conservative leaders. These leaders met at an interfaith Zionist summit whose purpose was to oppose rewarding murderous Palestinian terrorism wi th statehood 141. Out of the summit a letter arose addressed to President Bush that stated the Road Map could lead to a disaster142. The leaders listed as signatories to the letter included Gary Bauer, Jerry Falwell, John Hagee, Elwood McQuaid, Janet Parshall and Michael Little. Other Christian Zionist leaders who signed the letter included Richard Hellman (CIPAC), Ester Levins (UCI), and David A. Lewis (CUFI)143The Christian Right also expressed its displeasure toward the Road Map through Pat Robertsons Chr istian Broadcasting Network. Gordon Robertson, son of Pat, called on viewers to write the State Department and White House regarding U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs William Burns comments on Christian and conservative objections to the peace plan 144. Apparently the comments by Burns inferred that Christians and conservative viewpoints of the peace plan lack common sense. Robertson went on to add that from the Israeli point of view the Road Map was dead in the water145Against these pressures from the Christian Zionist Lobby, the U.S. government remained unified in its policy stance supporting the Road Map. The same could not be 140 New York Times: May 18, 2003 141 Ekklesia: May 20, 2003 142 Ibid. 143 Jerusalem Post: May 22, 2003 144 Islam Online: May 21, 2003 145 Ibid.
55 said of the Israeli government. On May 25, 2003 the Israeli cabinet, divided in their votes, decided to ac cept the terms of the Road Map. In order to protect their interests however, the Israeli cabinet insisted that fourteen objections be inserted into the Road Map representing a red line, which if crossed would cause Israel to withdraw from the peace process Two of these objections included the fate of the Israeli settlements and the timetable for implementation146In early June 2003 the Israelis, Palestinians, and U.S. were scheduled to meet to discuss the Road Map. However, before the summit even took place Ariel Sharon made inflammatory remarks in which he stated that Israel could not go on holding three-and a -million people under occupation 147. This comment was meant to imply that the Israelis would seek to keep the occupied territories, while displacing the Palestinians. Sharon added in a separate interview that he would not declare an end to the occupation at the summit148Although these comments by Sharon could have been seen as working against the Road Map, Sharon was not labeled a roadblock to peace. Instead the IFCJ published an editorial a week after the summit praising the American, Israeli, and P.A. leaders for working toward peace. In the same article the IFCJ advised the leaders involved in the Road Map to be weary of Arafat, as he was an obstacl e to peace 149 146 The Guardian: May 26, 2003 The reason for caution according to the author of the article, Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein, was that changes in the political leadership of the Palestinian Authority had occurred in name only. Behind the scenes Eckstein claimed Arafat still held the real power, which in turn meant Israel could not let its guard down. The editorial went on to praise the Israeli 147 The Guradian: June 2, 2003 148 Ibid. 149 Chicago Sun Times June 8, 2003
56 leadership for including the fourteen conditions in the Road Map that would allow the state to withdraw if Israels security were threatened. While the IFCJ focused on Arafat as the destroyer of peace, Israeli began an intensive targeted assassination campaign against the Palestinians. Israel, facing criticism over this assassination campaign, claimed that regardless of the Road Map it had the right to wage war against Hamas without restrictions150As a consequence of the suicide attacks, the IFCJ published another editorial claiming that the Israelis should not be required to follow the Road Map. According to the author, Rabbi Eckstein, Israel should not allow the international community to offer concessions to the Palestinians, since they have no desire for peace. Only after this peaceful partner is found should Israel seek to have a lasting peace with the Palestinians. The editorial made no mention of the Israeli targeted assassination campaign In response to this assassination campaign Hamas began targeting Jewish civilians with suicide attacks. 151To encourage the Israelis to reengage the Road Map and show the Palestinians that America was s erious about the Road Map, the Bush administration dispatched Colin Powell to the region. The task for Powell was to bring the Israelis back to the negotiating table after the spate of suicide attacks, while concurrently negotiating a cease fire with Hamas Within a few days of Powell visiting Israel, the Israelis assassinated another Hamas leader, making Powells effort all the more difficult. In what followed, Powell was 150 The Guardian: June 14, 2003 151 Chicago Sun Times June 17, 2003
57 rather critical in his remarks, claiming the Israelis were not ready to move forward and work toward peace152Upon hearing the critical rem arks by Powell regarding Israel s sincerity towards peace, Tom DeLay requested a meeting with President Bushs aides. At this meeting DeLay informed Bushs aides that he would promote a congressional re solution in favor of Israels actions 153. The Resolution express[ed] U.S. solidarity with Israel and condemn[ed] recent Palestinian terrorism against Israeli civilians154. DeLay framed the vote for the resolution in the following way: ''A vote for this resol ution reaffirms the House's commitment to Israel and to the moral clarity of our war on terror. So I just urge all members to cast that vote and join Israel's heroic stand against evil155As the peace process played on through June 2003, the criticism emanating from the White House regarding Israel became noticeably less vocal. One such example of this change in behavior occurred with the Gaza pullout in accordance with the Road Map. On their way out particular towns in Gaza, Israeli soldiers destroyed ever ything, yet the response from the White House was muted. Instead the Bush administration chose to focus on the withdrawal from Gaza itself, labeling it a step in the right direction 156In July the White House again faced the Christian Zionist Lobby when it hosted twenty leading Christian Zionists including Yechiel Eckstein. These Christian Zionist leaders met with National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice and Middle East advisor Elliot Abrams to express their opposition to the Road Map. In response to this opposition from such a key constituency in American politics, Rice informed the leaders that White 152 The Guardian: June 20, 2003 153 Washington Post: June 21, 2003 154 Sun Journal: June 29, 2003 155 Ibid. 156 The Guardian: June 30, 2003
58 House was sympathetic to their positions. Eckstein claimed that this meeting was the first time leaders of the Christian Right discussed Israel policy with high level White House officials157Additional displeasure from the Christian Zionists Lobby regarding the Road Map came from Gary Bauer. Americans for a Safe Israel was a group created by Bauer which began placing billboards and distributing bumper sticker s across America with a message from Genesis stating: "And the Lord said to Jacob...'Unto thy offspring will I give this land"' 158. Bauer also expressed the belief that any Palestinian state will be used as a base for terrorist operations against Israel159. An other actor wit hin the Christian Zionist Lobby, CFIC also sought to influence the Road Map by donating $200,000 to Israeli settlers in 2002 to help build new settlements160In late July the Christian Zionist Lobby continued to oppose the Road Map as Tom D eLay, before leaving on a trip to Israel, spoke against President Bushs decision to provide $20 million directly to the Palestinian Authority for the purpose of supporting Abbas 161. DeLay claimed that he was not against giving the Palestinians aid, but he w as against providing aid directly to the Palestinian Authority. Implicit in DeLays remarks was the notion that the P.A. was duplicitous and could not be trusted. This framing of the P.A. as distrustful was reinforced when DeLay arrived in Israel where he claimed that a Palestinian state cannot even be discussed until Palestinian terror was addressed162In an effort supposedly to address Palestinian terror, the Israelis continued to work on a security barrier that wound through the West Bank. President Bush with all his 157 Salon: November 1, 2004 158 Fox News: July 24, 2003 159 Ibid. 160 Ibid. 161 Chicago Sun Times: July 27, 2003 162 Jerusalem Post: July 27, 2003
59 power was unable to convince Sharon to stop construction of the security wall. While it was acknowledged that the existing wall would make the Road Map harder to implement, the disclosure that Israel would not stop the construction of state-s ponsored settlements made achieving the Road Map a herculean task163Regardless the onus to prove they were committed to peace lay with the Palestinians, not the Israelis. The ability to show commitment to peace was greatly reduced by the efforts of the Is raelis who increasingly made Abbas look weak to his own people through taking steps contra to the Road Map. This weakness in turn did not allow Abbas to crack down on Palestinian militant groups as the Israelis had requested, for he feared it would cause a civil war 164With a recalcitrant Israel paired with a P.A. powerless to stop terrorism, the Road Map began to resemble the article of appeasement the Christian Zionists claimed it to be. Still on his trip in Israel, DeLay let the Jewish state know the U.S stood with them as an ally and that the U.S. would pay to be on the right side against evil. 165. For in this battle, DeLay continued, there was no middle ground, just right and wrong166In the beginning of August 2003 following the deaths of four Jewish settlers, Israel called for a halt in the withdrawal from Palestinian cities. Israel added that there woul d be no further releases of Palestinian prisoners. Stopping the withdrawal from Palestinian territories ran counter to what was agreed upon in the Road Map, while the release of prisoners was a critical component to the truce Abbas negotiated with Thus, DeLay sought to sooth Israeli notions that he would allow the U.S. to deal away Israeli land while the Jewish state still faced security risks. 163 The Guardian July 30, 2003 164 Fox News: July 30, 2003 165 Orlando Sentinel: July 31, 2003 166 Ibid.
60 Palestinian militant groups. Israel in response claimed withdrawals and prisoner releases would again commence once the Palestinian leadership cracked down on terrorism167While Israel was playing hardball with the Palestinians, the U.S. attempted to get tough on the Israelis. This was evident in Bush administrations threat to freeze Israels loan guarantees if they continued to build the wall through Palestinian territory. However, the Bush administration also stated that it did not disagree with Israels right to build the security wall, it just had objections with the walls path 168While the security fence was still being constructed, the Road Map was continuing to fall apart. Throughout August violence became more frequent in Israel and the Palestinian territories. Frustration was also apparent between Palestinian and Israel leaders who left a meeting on August 17, 2003 without any agreements for further withdrawals from Palestinian cities. Israel again claimed they could not undertake further withdrawal s due to threats against their security 169. Yet as Abbas received formal permission from Arafat and began cracking down on militants, Israel again started targeting Palestinians for assassination170. This move by Israel was coupled with the Israeli military once again occupying Nablus and Jenin171These tumultuous days of August 2003 gave credence to Christian Zionist organizations that stood firmly opposed to the Road Map. Leading Christian Zionist Gary Bauer claimed the Bush administration was pushing the Is raelis to make dangerous concessions and he threatened to retaliate against these moves by asking Christian 167 The Guardian: August 5, 2003 168 The Guardian: August 6, 2003 169 The Guardian: August 22, 2003 170 Ibid. 171 Ibid.
61 voters to say home on Election Day 2004172. Another evangelical, Ed McAteer helped to raise $70,000 to pay for one hundred billboards to urge Christians to contact the White House to show their displeasure over the Road Map173. McAteer also had plans to send out a press release to one thousand newspapers across the country indentifying Christian individuals who regularly meet with the White House, but fai l to speak out against the Road Map174. CIPAC also mobilized against the Road Map through organizing a Washington rally in September 2003 in support of Israel175Before CIPAC could even hold its rally in September, the Bush administration came to the realization that the Road Map had stalled 176 The cumulative effect of suicide bombings, Israeli assassination attempts, and P.A. institutional weakness had finally derailed the peace process. Instead Israel would continue to claim that as it did not have a credible partner in peace, and Ariel Sharon would begin to take unilateral measures to disengage from parts of the occupied territories. These steps would include relocating settlements in the Gaza Strip and intensifying the construction of the security fence. 2004 Despite the Road Map losing its drive, Christian Zionist groups were not overly enthusiastic regarding Sharons unilateralism either. In fact Israeli settlers and the Christian Right traveled to Washington in February 2004 to pressure Bush not to acc ept 172 Jerusalem Post: August 22, 2003 173 Ibid. 174 Ibid. 175 Ibid. 176 The Guardian: September 19, 2003
62 the pullout plan for Gaza177. Other Christian Zionists groups claimed Sharon was guilty of compromise and betrayal178In February 2004, the American government tacitly approved Sharons disengagement plan, conditional upon Israel not annexing settlements in the West Bank nor extending the security fence through the Jordan Valley. Sharon claimed that by ridding Israel of the Gaza Strip and pulling the military out of the West Bank, it would leave in place a limited government that would eventually cause the Palestinians to take control of their future and reenter peace talks. While the motives by Sharon were questioned within the U.S., the Bush administration felt as though any movement regarding Israel and the Palestinians was progress 179By April 2004 the B ush administration had given full approval to the disengagement plan, with Bush calling Sharons plan historic and courageous actions 180. The disengagement plan approved by Bush called for removing all settlements in the Gaza Strip, while allowing Israel to retain control over a significant portion of the West Bank. In addition to evacuating settlers from Gaza, the plan also called for Israel to remove four small settlements in the West Bank. Another key component of Bushs approval of the disengagement plan was the American acceptance of the Israeli right to continue building the security fence. However, President Bush stated the fence should not be seen as a permanent political boundary181In late June of 2004 the U.S. Congress also moved to acknowledge the Israeli right to unilaterally disengage from the Palestinians. The House passed Concurrent 177 Jerusalem Post: February 13, 2004 178 Ekklesia: April 15, 2004 179 The Guardian: February 18, 2004 180 The Guardian: April 15, 2004 181 Ibid.
63 Resolution 460, sponsored by Tom DeLay, to express their strong endorsement of President Bushs support for the disengagement plan182. In mid-July 2004 the Democrats within Congress also drafted a platform emphasizing the close relationship between Israel and the U.S., and the belief that the Green Line cannot be the basis for peace negotiations with the Palestinians. This claim regarding the Green Line openly expres sed the conviction that there would not be a right of return and that Israel did have some legitimate claims to the West Bank183While the U.S. Congress and President was busy expressing their solidarity with Israels disengagement plan, the International Court of Justice at the Hague (ICJ) was active in deciding the legality the security fence. The ICJ rejected the Israeli claim that the security fence was the best defense against Palestinian suicide bombers, and instead viewed the fence as an infringement upon Palestinian rights. This ruling by fourteen out of fifteen judges was followed by the non-binding recommendation that Israel immediately halt construction of the fence and compensate those Palestinians affected by its presence. The U.S. in response to this ruling claimed the ICJ was not the proper forum to discuss the security fence, since they viewed it as a political issue that should be dealt with through the Road Map The bill was drafted by Shelley Berkley, another politician who associates with the Christian Zionists. 184. Christian Zionist, Roy Blunt added: "Both the president and the House have recently made it clear that the United States will not allow this power play by the United Nation's judicial arm to undermine its commitment to Israel's secu rity"185 182 Common Dreams: June 25, 2004 183 J Weekly: June 16, 2004 184 The Guardian: July 9, 2004 185 Ibid.
64 While the ICJ ruling over the security fence was met with disapproval by Christian Zionists the withdrawal from Gaza was not met with the same condemnation. UCI issued a press release in September 2004 backing Benjamin Netanyahus call for a nati onal referendum before evacuating the Gaza Strip and four West Bank settlements. The UCI claimed the disengagement plan may increase terrorist attacks within Israel and could embolden countries such as Iran to attack Israel186. The UCI release went on to state that due to Sharons unwillingness to air objections to the plan within his own cabinet and his dismissal of the idea to holding a national referendum on the issue, critics of Israel may claim Israel is no longer a genuine democracy187Notwithstanding these calls by UCI and Netanyahu to abort the disengagement from Gaza, Ariel Sharon fully embraced this policy while officially abandoning the Road Map in midSeptember 2004. Sharon, despite previously expressing disengagement as a step within the Road Map, stated: Today, we are not following the Road Map. I am not ready for this 188Although Sharon may have believed the Road Map to be no longer binding, Tony Blair had other ideas. In December Mr. Blair called for a meeting in early 2005 between members of the Quartet and Abbas for the purpose of strengthening the Palestinian Authority and getting the Road Map back on track. The proposal by Prime Minister Blair came after the death of Arafat and the resulting reorganization of power within the He added that Israel would stay in the West Bank territories after disengagement and continue its war on terrorism. 186 Unity Coalition for Israel: September 15, 2004 187 Ibid. 188 The Guardian: September 15, 2004
65 Palestinian political community. Israel declined to attend the event but called it an important initiative189 2005 In the early months of 2005 Christian Zionists were actively opposing both the Road Map and the disengagement from the Gaza Strip. One Christian Zionist leader coordinated a postcard campaign amongst churches in order to send 50,000 pieces of mail to the White House denouncing the Road Map190. A nother Christian Zionist group planned to travel to the Gaza Strip to protest the withdrawal, on the grounds that it violates Gods plan191. By April of 2005 it was reported that thousands of both Christians and Jews were ready to join the struggle of the settlers in Gaza192. In April 2005 the Road Map was still actively protested against by Christian Zionist groups, as the UCI organized a protest right outside Bushs Crawford ranch as the American president met with Sharon. The UCI claimed the Road Map would reward the Palestinians for their terrorism193 In March of 2005 as the world was preparing for Israel to remove itself from the settlements in the Gaza Strip, Israel moved to build 3,500 more homes in the West Bank. The new settlements would connect Maale Adumim with Jerusalem, thereby allowing Israel to further consolidate control around Jerusalem. To his critics, Sharon answered that he was not violating any tenets of the Road Map, for the U.S. had 189 The Guardian: December 22, 2004 190 Dissident Voice: January 17, 2005 191 Jewish Journal: March 17, 2005 192 Dissident Voice: April 12, 2005 193 Kentucky New Era: April 11, 2005
66 assured him that Israel would retain control over any major settlement blocs in a peace agreement194 By July 2005, Israel remained a month away from the Gaza disengagement plan. The ICEJ in protest published a press release written by its executive director, Malcolm Hedding. The statement read that the ICEJ is convinced that Israel is placing itself in grave and serious danger through withdrawing from Gaza 195. The press release went on to say that the Bible is clear that those nations who attempt to divide the land of Israel will incur Gods disfavor. The ICEJ r easoned that these nations attempting to divide Israel will fall into the hands of the living God196. The press release ended with the ICEJ focusing on the plight of the settlers being evacuated. It was emphasized that the settlers had been encouraged to s ettle in Gaza by the government, only to later to have their families uprooted by the same government197 On August 15, 2005 Israel began its withdrawal from the Gaza Strip. Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) were brought in to evacuate those settlers who refused government orders to leave. By August 20, 2005 the IDF had evacuated all but four of the Gaza settlements, and were operating weeks ahead of schedule. Ariel Sharon made it clear at this time that he had no intention to evacuate any other settlements and would wait for the Palestinians to end terror before returning to the Road Map 198 194 The Guardian: March 2, 2005 195 ICEJ: July 21, 2005 196 Ibid. 197 Ibid. 198 The Guardian: August 20, 2005
67 2006 On January 4, 2006 Ariel Sharon suffered a massive stroke at his ranch in the Negev desert. Sharon suffered paralysis of the lower body and was placed in an induced c oma199. Pat Robertson commenting on Sharons condition claimed in early February that the stroke occurred because he attempted to divide Gods land. He went on to say that when Bush proposed the Road Map in 2002, he warned the president to abandon it based on appeals to his own faith200By April 2006, it was reported that new Prime Minister Olmert would begin to withdraw from more settlements in the West Bank as part of a larger disengagement plan. When asked about these plans, John Hagee claimed that his organization would continue supporting Israel 201. Other groups with the Christian Zionist Lobby were not as supportive. Leaders of the Christian Right and neo-conservatives took out a full page add in the Washington Times to denounce the plan by stating fri ends dont let friends commit suicide202Olmert continued to pursue what he called his convergence plan in the pursuit of unilaterally dictating Israels borders. This continued until June 12, 2006 when Hezbollah conducted a cross border raid, surprising the IDF and kidnapping two of their soldiers. This caused Israel to undertake a massive invasion of Lebanon for the purpose of punishing Hezbollah and recovering their missing soldiers The ad was signed by six evangelical groups. 203 199 The Guardian: January 4, 2006 This action by Hezbollah c aused Olmert to come to the realization that even if Israel were to withdraw from the occupied territories there would be no guarantee that the Jewishs states security would increase. Israel unilateralist policy officially came to an end on September 18, 2006. 200 LexingtonHerald Leader: February 3, 2006 201 Forward: April 7, 2006 202 IPS News: May 24, 2 006 203 The Guardian: July 12, 2006
68 CHAPTER V CONCLUSION Analysis The evidence in this research allows for multiple interpretations of how much influence Christian Zionist groups had on U.S. policy toward Israel. In analyzing the organizational structures of the Christian Zionists it was found that they actively lobbied the American government to support their policy preferences. Yet many of these groups were designated as charities, meaning they could not substantially lobby on behalf of their preferences. Instead these organizations engaged in attempts to influence policy through actions such as mass mobilization and media campaigns. These actions were evident in the second case study were the Christian Zionists used these tactics to actively oppose the Road Map. The actions stemmed from the maximalist positions held by the Christian Zionists, who saw attempts at dividing gods land as sacrilegious. These actions came in the form of activities such as writing editorials, organizing conferences, and encouraging letter wr iting campaigns. However although evidence in these forms was found, there were not strong causal linkages to show that the Christian Zionist lobbying caused the U.S. to shift its policy i n support of Israeli unilateralism Moreover, the death of evidence collected regarding Israeli unilateralism did not show whether the Christian Zionists
69 actually favored this policy to the Road Map. Due to this lack of evidence and weak linkages between the evidence that was found I am unable to draw conclusions about my hypothesis through the chosen theoretical perspective. In order to better test this hypothesis in the future I would first conduct the research with additional sources of evidence. One such way to gather more evidence regarding the U.S. policy shift would be to interview politicians who support Christian Zionist causes. A questionnaire could be given to them to find out how strongly they feel the Christian Zionist Lobby impacts the decisions they make regarding Israel. It would also be interesting to find out how strongly their own religious affiliations direct their decisions on Israel, and whether their own religious convictions ever conflict with the Christian Zionist groups that they associate with. Another source of evidence would be to analyze archived statements and newsletters from both the Christian Zionists organizations and the U.S. government. Although some of the organizations did keep online archives of the statements they released to the media, often the records only dated back as far as 2006. This was not beneficial to this research since official statements were sought as far back as 2002. Access to these public statements could show how the Christian Zionist organizations official statements and newsletters framed the issue for thei r supporters, and in what ways they encouraged their supporters to take action to further their preferences. In regards to data on the U.S. government, archived statements from the U.S. executive branch could be acquired from the Department of State Office of the Historian. Likewise archived statements from the legislative branch could be acquired from the Congressional Record.
70 Moreover, if in the future this study were to have funding, it would be beneficial to pay opensecrets.org the $125 an hour fee to provide an individual listing of pro-Israeli organizations by industry. This would allow for the broadening of Christian Zionist organizations not mentioned by Mearsheimer and Walt to be researched. Finally, if the funding were available, opensecrets.org c ould provide a more extensive listing of politicians that the pro-Israel industry attempts to influence. Any listing provided by opensecrets .org could also provide me with a more complete listing of Christian Zionist groups. This would allow for me to eli minate some of the current organizations I have listed as belonging to the Christian Zionist Lobby, while possible adding others. These new organizations could then offer new sources of evidence to test my hypothesis against. Therefore, by refining the organization under study I could eliminate some groups suspected as not truly being part of the Christian Zionist Lobby, but more closely resembling part of the Israel Lobby. For in using the groups listed by Mearsheimer and Walt, it was found that some supposedly Christian Zionist organizations were run by Jewish individuals. This is not to say that these Jewish individuals would not lobby for Christian Zionists preferences, but instead to claim that it would highly unlikely that they would lobby for these preferences due to their selfdefeating ends. In addition to creating more sources of evidence, more cases could be added to test the hypothesis These case studies would involve the same question in this research focusing on why the U.S. provides nearly unconditional support for Israel. Three case studies that immediately come to mind involving the interests of the Christian Zionists would be the Egypt-Israel Peace agreement, the Oslo Accords, and the Israeli Syrian peace talks of 1999.
71 For the 1979 Israel -Egypt peace treaty, Israel agreed to return the Sinai Peninsula to Egypt in return for a full peace. In this case the U.S. allowed Israel to sign a bilateral treaty with Egypt instead of pushing the Jewish state to sign a multilateral comprehensive peace w ith the Arab states in the region. This case study would test how the Christian Zionists lobbied for or against this policy for the purpose of providing Israel with the most favorable outcome. I would expect to find evidence of the Christian Zionists oppos ing this policy, and as a result, the American government not fully engaging the peace process with Egypt and Israel. This reluctance of the Christian Zionist to approve of this peace is attributed to the return of Sinai, which was promised to the Jews in both Numbers and Ezekiel. While this would be an intriguing case study to conduct, one problem would be that out of the Christian Zionist groups in this study, only the NCLCI existed in 1979. Accordingly, for this case study to be conducted Christian Zioni st groups which existed in 1979 would have to be found and the range of actors in the research expanded. A case study involving the Oslo Accords would also be appealing to add to future research. Although the Oslo Accords did not initially include any stipulations for a Palestinian state, it did call for limited self-rule in the Gaza Strip and West Bank by Pa lestinians. Once again Christian Zionists would find fault with these agreements because Jews would be losing control over the land promised to them by God. Thus, due to Christian Zionist influence I would expect to find evidence showing the U.S. showing m ore support to Israel during the Oslo Process This case study would not have the same difficulty of the aforementioned one, as all the Christian Zionist groups were organized during this time frame except Stand for Israel and Christians United for Israel.
72 Finally, the Syrian-Israeli peace talks of 1999 study would be attractive for the same reason as the first two case studies. Mainly, the Christian Zionists would see the Israeli government as going against Gods will by returning land promised to them. In this case I would expect the U.S. to again provide Israel with support in dealing with the Syrians or even ending the peace talks altogether. Again in this case all the Christian Zionist groups could be included except for Stand for Israel and Christians United for Israel.
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The christian zionist lobby and u.s.-israel policy
h [electronic resource] /
by Mark Grzegorzewski.
[Tampa, Fla] :
b University of South Florida,
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Thesis (MA)--University of South Florida, 2010.
Includes bibliographical references.
Text (Electronic thesis) in PDF format.
Mode of access: World Wide Web.
System requirements: World Wide Web browser and PDF reader.
ABSTRACT: This research explores the role of the Christian Zionist Lobby in shaping U.S. policy towards Israel. It is posited that the Christian Zionist Lobby, due to their eschatological goals, diverge from the interests of the larger Israel Lobby described by Mearsheimer and Walt. To test this hypothesis an exploratory case study is implemented to explain why the U.S. shifted its policy from supporting the Road Map to backing Israeli unilateralism. As the results of this study show, the Christian Zionists did actively oppose the Road Map and may have influenced American policy making. However, it would be a mistake to characterize the Gaza pullout as the most desirable policy alternative for the Christian Zionist Lobby. This study concludes that when comparing the lobbying efforts against the Road Map and Israeli unilateralism, the Christian Zionists actively opposed the former policy while the evidence in support of the latter policy remained inconclusive.
Advisor: Mark Amen, Ph.D.
x Government and International Affairs
t USF Electronic Theses and Dissertations.