In This Review

Allies for Armageddon: The Rise of Christian Zionism
Allies for Armageddon: The Rise of Christian Zionism
By Victoria Clark
Yale University Press, 2007, 344 pp

Allies for Armageddon traces the history of Christian Zionism from its sixteenth-century Calvinist roots to today's American Christians, led by the likes of the late Jerry Falwell and John Hagee, who fit a fervent this-worldly support for Israel into their millenarian beliefs. Clark has done much more than examine the copious literature, past and present, asserting the central role of Israel in end-time prophecies. She became a sharply critical participant-observer, interviewing Christian Zionist leaders, mixing with the rank and file, attending church services, and even joining a Holy Land tour. The resulting book is an intimate portrait of what can fairly be called a cult, tightly organized and embracing a Manichaean doctrine that, being accepted as God-given, is impervious to worldly reasoning. Clark also brings out in full detail the theologically dubious alliance between the Israeli leadership and Christian Zionism, which depicts Israelis doing the heavy lifting in provoking Armageddon but not ultimately saved unless they convert to Christianity. She persuasively argues that Christian Zionism, embracing wars and rumors of wars as divinely mandated, has a significant and unfavorable impact on U.S. foreign policy toward Israel and the Middle East in general.