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Hot Summer Nights

Hot Summer Nights

Blitzkrieg of Southern Lebanon

Daniel Whalen

 

 

In March of 2003 the United States invaded the country of Iraq and since that invasion the Middle East has been in a perceptual state of never ending war. During the American occupation of Iraq there was to be another conflict erupted and for thirty-four days brought the world to the brink of global war. This conflict would pit a regional power against a well-trained paramilitary group that would be armed with some of the best weapons available. In 2006 Israel invaded Southern Lebanon, a reign Israel occupied between 1982-2000, mostly as a security zone on the border of Lebanon and Israel. This would be similar to Charlemagne’s Spanish March, in that it would keep clashes between Israeli forces and militia forces out of Israel. Israel claimed it was tired of being a prisoner of the status quo, a preverbal stalemate with Hezbollah that involved occasional prisoner swaps. Prior to this conflict Hezbollah is seen as negative within Lebanon and Israel had some support over the globe. As the conflict evolved that support would fade, it is important to know way.

This particular conflict in Lebanon was not between the government of Lebanon and Israel, but from the militant group Hezbollah based in Southern Lebanon, which is similar in many respects structurally to that of the Irish Republican Army, with a political wing and a paramilitary wing. Hezbollah however has the militant wing and political wing operating under the same name, where as the Irish Republican Army has the political wing operating under than name Sinn Fein. This political wing maintains a sizable network of charitable and civic organizations that build schools and hospitals, even fields candidates for elected office within Lebanon[1]. Hezbollah since the pull out of the Israeli Defense Force in 2000 has had a minor skirmish war of sorts with the Israeli Defense Force that has a method to it’s madness and keeps this skirmish war a literally unknown conflict, never reported in the media. There were rules to this skirmish war, a quid pro quo approach in that whenever Hezbollah attacked Israeli positions the IDF would attack command and control positions of Hezbollah. Also allowable with the rules of the game was prisoner exchanges[2]. It helped keep an uneasy peace between the two and helped the Israelis out of Lebanon.

The Lebanese government might have unaware of what Hezbollah was doing along the border the country shared with Israel and many of the businesses in Beirut was preparing for what was expected to be a record summer of tourism, giving a much needed boost the emerging economy[3]. One could safely assume that the Lebanese government was unaware of what was going on at the border because in Southern Lebanon Hezbollah enjoyed overwhelming popular support from those living in Southern Lebanon[4]. When a groups such as Hezbollah has support from the people in the region of a country it operates a lot of things can go unnoticed by those outside that region. Staying is one place Hezbollah could ratchet up any descent and keep news from going out of the region. Because of this the Lebanese governments attempts to disarm Hezbollah proved futile, which added to the political pressure within the government to improve things in the country in order to weaken Hezbollah’s grip on the south and keep Hezbollah from building on what little support the group has in the remainder of the country[5]. The coming summer season was predicted to be record setting economically, many hoped would be after years of war. With an economic boom the Lebanese government could have gained some support in the country to tip the balance in it’s favor over the influence of Hezbollah by proving things are improving and life is going to be better. Most importantly Lebanon was starting to lose the stigma of the civil war that plagued the country for years, causing many wealthy Arabs would vacation in Lebanon as an alternative to traveling to American or Europe where it was becoming troublesome to visit due to the heightened security in the post 9/11 world[6]. It was far easier to travel to Beirut where Arabic was spoken and the warm Mediterranean Sea is welcoming like any other vacation spot.

There was a subtle build up triggering to the invasion of Southern Lebanon by the Israeli military. Prior to the major conflict in the month of May Hezbollah fired upon an Israeli border post, leaving a wounded Israeli solider in its wake. In response the Israeli Defense Force shelled with artillery twenty positions used by Hezbollah as command and control for the paramilitary wing of the group. In response Hezbollah launched another rocket attack into Israel[7]. The thirty-four day war started shortly after that with a Hezbollah raid across the shared border and capturing two Israeli soldiers prisoner with the hopes of a prisoner exchange at a later date, which was within the rules of the game[8]. However the Israelis government felt the rules of the game need to be changed and a strong message needed to be sent to Hezbollah stating that the state of Israel was not going to tolerate the status quo any longer. Israel always agreeing to prisoner exchanges, doing so can be perceived as weakness by many hardliners within Israel who want an eye for an eye. With the American military not far away in Iraq, the Israeli government must have felt pressure to project strength within the region. Hezbollah may not have been looking for an escalation to what would become the conflict because the leader of Hezbollah, Hassan Nasrallah said “The prisoners in our hands will not return to Israel except through indirect negotiations and exchange of prisoners and peace[9].” Hezbollah is in the habit of relying on others to negotiate for on their behalf and always looked to free political prisoners that were being held in Israeli prisons. Israeli Prime Minster Ehud Olmert ruled out any negotiations and went as far to file a complaint with the United Nations wanting the enforcement of resolutions forcing the Lebanese government to disarm Hezbollah[10]. This is a bit hypercritical because Israeli government has a long history of never compling with the resolutions filed against Israel by the United Nations. Prime Minster Olmert would go one to say that “’Israel will not be held hostage’ by terrorists…” adding that Israel is “…not looking for war or direct conflict…” with Hezbollah[11]. The Israeli government saw itself at the crossroads with some tough decisions to make, but there is only one remaining action Israel can take. However while Prime Minster Olmert was making the case of a defensive fight while Israeli tanks and bulldozers were crushing suspected Hezbollah hideouts in Southern Lebanon[12]. Olmert went as far as to vow that Israel ”…will not hesitate to take severe measures against those who are aiming thousands of rockets and missiles against innocent civilians for the sole purpose of killing them[13].” It is always easy to talk like the victim when one is taking action against ones enemy at the same time. It was clear however that Prime Minster Olmert was not in a position of strength within the Israeli government, even though he was trying to project strength.

Half a world away Americans were occupied with the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Support for Israel was in the background as support for the American soldier was on the rise and the American economy was starting to show signs of slowing down. War wariness spreading across the United States and the world at a quickening pace, the last thing people were looking for was another conflict in the world, especially one in the Middle East. This is something important the Israeli government overlooked when the decision was made to march the Israeli Defense Force into Southern Lebanon to free the two captured Israeli soldiers. The Israeli government took a lot of things for granted when it made that fateful decision. The Israeli government had reason to take things for granted, the President of the United States George W. Bush and his administration would give Israel the proverbial green light early on in the crisis claiming it was within the American ‘war on terror’ which is what the Israel ambassador to the United Nations, Dan Gillerman, would claim saying Israel “is actually doing its work in the war against terror[14].” Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice would add to that by saying that a “…cessation of violence is crucial, but if that cessation of violence is hostage to Hezbollah’s next decision to launch missiles into Israel or Hamas’s next decision to abduct an Israel citizen, then we will have gotten nowhere[15].” Secretary Rice advocating for new rules to the game along the Lebanese-Israeli border on the behalf of Israel, doing so behind the guise of the Bush administrations war on terror. Secretary Rice would brush off criticism the United States was receiving around the world for its support of Israel’s military action, going on to say any promise of a cease-fire Hezbollah and Israel is a “false promise” from Hezbollah[16].  It was clear the United States would go against any calls for a cease-fire because the United States was exporting many of its state-of-the-art weapons to Israel[17]. Other countries however were not fully behind Israel, Russian President Vladimir Putin expressed at a G8 conference, which took place as the conflict between Hezbollah and Israel was just beginning, that he was under the impression that the goal of Israel was to“…go beyond just recovering their kidnapped soldiers[18].” It is easy for President Putin to say that because as the days went by the Israel Defense Force was mounting forces for a major land invasion into Lebanon that could have dragged the whole region into a large-scale conflict, for what would be the second stage of Israeli offensive against Hezbollah. It is clear that President Putin had received some very good intelligence.   

Israel for the most part depends on support from the United States and her allies, however Israel’s invasion of Southern Lebanon started an erosion of that support in the West. A lot of the erosion of support had a lot to do with Israel’s actions within the conflict. In the Lebanese village of Qana the world saw the worse in the Israeli Defense Force’s strategy. Using airstrikes the Israeli Defense Force more than 100 civilians in the village of Qana, horrifying the world[19]. This attack did not come with prior warning and should have been expected as the Israeli air force was leveling the countryside of Lebanon and taking out important infrastructure. The Israeli air force even bombed a United Nations mission in Southern Lebanon[20]. It could have happen anywhere, but for the poor people of Qana it happen to them. A weekend prior to the attack Israeli warplanes launched a missile attack on two Red Cross ambulances, hitting one in the center of the cross[21]. An attack on any Red Cross vehicle or camp is unprecedented. Israel would later claim that many of the houses were destroyed because of “munitions” stored in them, killing the people residing in these houses[22]. Many in the international community, who would condemn this attack, would not believe however this claim put forth by Israel[23]. Even average citizens in Israel would feel bad about these attacks, but would blame Hezbollah for hiding weapons in civilian centers[24]. Outrage of this attack would lead to protests in Beirut, with many burning American flags in protest of the Bush administrations support for Israel and Israel’s actions in the conflict. The rage of the people would force Secretary Rice to cancel a trip to negotiate a cease-fire in Beirut[25]. With many news agencies around the world reporting that more than half of the causalities being children, it was becoming hard for the world to see Israel’s actions as being justified[26]. With Israel’s claim’s of Hezbollah storing weapons there, even claiming that Hezbollah would use United Nations outposts as weapons caches[27], Israel was slowing isolating itself in the world, bringing down the United States with it. Israel was doing everything it felt possible to rid itself of a enemy that has log plagued them, by any means necessary. In doing so Israel was making a lot more new enemies that were growing tired of Israel doing things on its own.    

The great Sun Tzu said, “He who is prudent and lies in wait for an enemy who is not, will be victorious.” Hezbollah lied in wait for the Israel Defense Force in Southern Lebanon, much the Vietcong in the Vietnam War, in complex tunnel systems that were in the hills of Southern Lebanon[28]. The Lebanese army, unlike Hezbollah, was not equipped like a modern army making it unable to fight in any large-scale combat mission[29]. The Lebanese army was estimated 38,000 men that are meant to keep the peace within Lebanon, were as Hezbollah has unknown numbers of men and weapons[30]. One thing that gets overlooked often is that Hezbollah does have is a formidable fighting force that is well drilled and well armed[31]. By well-armed Hezbollah had modern Russian made weapons, which many suspected was given to Hezbollah by Iran and Syria to use against their common enemy, Israel[32]. With these weapons, especially sophisticated Russian antitank weapons, Hezbollah was able to inflict serious damage to the Israeli Defense Forces modern state-of-the-art weapon systems, including the Israeli Merkava tank[33]. Israel would complain about, indirectly, how they felt the Russian government was complacent in Hezbollah gaining Russian weapons unhindered[34]. This would make Iran and Syria the proxies for Russia, giving the situation a Cold War feel, pitting the United States and Russia in a proxy war. It could be that Israel was not happy with how the Russian weapons performed against their modern weapons. Israel would also add the claim that Syria gave Hezbollah Russian anti-personnel weapons such as 220-millimeter and 302-millimeter missiles with anti-personal warheads on them[35]. Hezbollah would take farther steps to modify the weapons by packing the missiles with ball bearings to inflict even further damage[36]. Tactics used by Hezbollah would get Hezbollah compared to other guerrilla groups such as the Vietcong, because they use flexible tactics and a lack of fear of the Israeli Defense Force[37]. In war fear can be a powerful weapon, but with proper training fear can be over come easily. It is also hard to beat people that believe in a cause or a message. The reason the American army struggled in Vietnam and conflicts since is because an armed force cannot defeat an idea. Hezbollah believes they are the defenders against a foreign invader, that foreign invader being Israel.  

As the conflict progressed Israel tried to inflict as much damage as it could before any cease-fire would take effect. This escalation could be credited for the Israeli’s bombing Qana. As the escalation progressed the world become more outraged, turning to the streets to voice condemnation for Israel. What would help fuel protests and outrage was the impact on the global oil market this conflict had[38]. A increased fear of Iran withdrawing the oil it produces from the global market in protest of Israel was seizing the world with fear that oil prices would skyrocket, with gas prices hitting four dollars a gallon in the United States[39].  Also fueling the fire against Israel was the possibility of war crimes charges against many of the belligerents. Louise Arbour, the chief prosecutor for the International Criminal Tribunals for Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia said the action of “Indiscriminate shelling of cities constitutes a foreseeable and unacceptable targeting of civilians…[and] is unjustifiable[40].” The International Red Cross, who had two ambulances bombed by Israel, would further that sentiment by saying Israel violated the Geneva Conventions and their protocols of warfare[41]. No matter how negative the views of the conflict were as many as 90% of Israelis supported the conflict, with protests against the war drawing about 2000 people within Tel Aviv[42]. There would also be rallies supporting Israel in England drawing estimated crowds up to 5000 people[43]. However despite the rallies of support there were many more protests against the Israeli action. There would be rallies with as many as 7000 people in cities across the United Kingdom[44]. With the United States House of Representatives voting 410 to 8 in support of Israel, there would be rallies in Washington D.C. against Israel[45]. A protester in Israel summed it up best when he said “the Israeli government thinks bombing Lebanon they will make peace, but they did it many times before and it didn’t work[46].” Iraq still a war zone and the forgotten conflict in Afghanistan waging on the world was getting sick of war, with the many in the world blaming the United States. The protests in Israel were also anti-United States rallies[47]. It was hard for the United States, because of the Bush administration, not to be blamed for the conflict. Israel claiming it was doing its part in the ‘war on terror’ made a direct connection with the United States and the ongoing conflicts of the United States. It would be hard for anyone to argue that there was not an anti-Muslim feel about these conflicts.

In the end the Israeli government agreed to a cease-fire, with an international peacekeeping force in Southern Lebanon. After thirty-four long days of fighting Lebanon was reduced to a state of rubble, shattered lives, and a weakened economy. Israel would eventually get the two soldiers back, but did the means justify the end? The conflict changed the way many around the world view Israel. Since the conflict the Lebanese government has struggled mightily, many Arab countries have new governments emerging, and the United States elected a President that does not view Israel the same way as President Bush did. The world is changing also because shortly after the war many countries around the world fell into economic collapse. Israel has had a valued alliance with the United States, but new global powers like China and a couple of old powers like Russia and Germany, Israel may find it hard to find new allies[48]. Importantly peoples views of Israel have changed, Israel is no longer the victim as many are starting to see Israel as the aggressor.  

 

Bibliography:

“Acts of War Raise Risk to Region.” BBC, July 13, 2006, sec. Middle East. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/5177346.stm.

“CNN.com – Anderson Cooper 360° Blog-Seeing Red in Israel”, July 31, 2006. http://www.cnn.com/CNN/Programs/anderson.cooper.360/blog/2006/07/seeing-red-in-israel.html.

“Deaths Rise as Israel, Hezbollah Trade Attacks.” Msnbc.com, n.d., sec. Mideast/N. Africa. http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/13853565/ns/world_news-mideast_n_africa/t/deaths-rise-israel-hezbollah-trade-attacks/.

El Husseini, Rola. “Hezbollah and the Axis of Refusal: Hamas, Iran and Syria.” Third World Quarterly 31, no. 5 (July 2010): 803–815.

Erlanger, Steven, and Hassan M. Fattah. “Israel Suspending Lebanon Air Raids After Dozens Die.” The New York Times, July 31, 2006, sec. International / Middle East. http://www.nytimes.com/2006/07/31/world/middleeast/31mideast.html.

Erlanger, Steven, and Richard A. Oppel Jr. “A Disciplined Hezbollah Surprises Israel With Its Training, Tactics and Weapons.” The New York Times, August 7, 2006, sec. International / Middle East. http://www.nytimes.com/2006/08/07/world/middleeast/07hezbollah.html.

“Hezbollah Seizes Israel Soldiers.” BBC, July 12, 2006, sec. Middle East. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/5171616.stm.

“Hezbollah Sharply Rejects Cease-Fire, Say It Will Continue Rocket Strikes | Fox News.” Fox News, July 17, 2006. http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,203908,00.html.

“Hezbollah Warns Israel over Raids.” BBC, July 12, 2006, sec. Middle East. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/5173078.stm.

Hoge, Warren. “Attacks Qualify as War Crimes, Officials Say.” The New York Times, July 20, 2006, sec. International / Middle East. http://www.nytimes.com/2006/07/20/world/middleeast/20nations.html.

“Israel Complains Hezbollah Used Russian-Made Missiles | Fox News”, August 18, 2006. http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,209162,00.html.

“Israel Floats Idea to End Lebanon Fighting.” Msnbc.com, n.d., sec. Mideast/N. Africa. http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/13897540/ns/world_news-mideast_n_africa/t/israel-floats-idea-end-lebanon-fighting/.

“Israel Gears up for Massive Ground Assault as World Dithers | Current Affairs | DW.DE | Null”, July 22, 2006. http://www.dw.de/dw/article/0,,2107137,00.html.

“Israel Rejects U.N. Involvement in Peacekeeping Force, Probe of Mission Bombing | Fox News”, July 28, 2006. http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,206035,00.html.

“Israeli Warplanes Strike Targets Deep in Lebanon.” Msnbc.com, July 31, 2006, sec. Mideast/N. Africa. http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/14100258/ns/world_news-mideast_n_africa/t/israeli-warplanes-strike-targets-deep-lebanon/.

“Lebanon’s Two Fighting Forces.” BBC, July 22, 2006, sec. Middle East. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/5205930.stm.

“Little Dissent as Israelis Support War.” BBC, July 23, 2006, sec. Middle East. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/5208718.stm.

“Mideast Conflict Impacts Oil Prices Worldwide.” Msnbc.com, July 14, 2006, sec. NBCNightlyNews. http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/13864423/ns/nbcnightlynews/t/mideast-conflict-impacts-oil-prices-worldwide/.

Norton, Augustus Richard. Hezbollah: A Short History. 1St ed. Princeton University Press, 2007.

Pear, Robert. “Rally Near White House Protests Violence in Mideast.” The New York Times, August 13, 2006, sec. Washington. http://www.nytimes.com/2006/08/13/washington/13protest.html.

Philipp, Peter. “Opinion: United States Is Doing Too Little, Too Late | Current Affairs | DW.DE | Null”, July 26, 2006. http://www.dw.de/dw/article/0,,2110333,00.html.

“Protests in UK at Israeli Action.” BBC, July 22, 2006, sec. UK. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/5203450.stm.

“Rally Offers Support to Israelis.” BBC, July 23, 2006, sec. UK. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/5206954.stm.

“Rice Urges ‘urgent and Enduring’ Mideast Peace.” Msnbc.com, July 25, 2006, sec. Mideast/N. Africa. http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/14018618/ns/world_news-mideast_n_africa/t/rice-urges-urgent-enduring-mideast-peace/.

Rutenberg, Jim. “Despite Joint Statement on Mideast, Strains Emerge as U.S. Supports Israel’s Campaign.” The New York Times, July 17, 2006, sec. International / Middle East. http://www.nytimes.com/2006/07/17/world/middleeast/17diplo.html.

Ryan, Rachel. “Propaganda Wars Fight for Headlines in the Middle East | Germany | DW.DE | Null”, August 15, 2006. http://www.dw.de/dw/article/0,,2135841,00.html.

Tavernise, Sabrina. “A Night of Death and Terror for Lebanese Villagers.” The New York Times, July 31, 2006, sec. International / Middle East. http://www.nytimes.com/2006/07/31/world/middleeast/31scene.html.

[1] Rola El Husseini, “Hezbollah and the Axis of Refusal: Hamas, Iran and Syria,” Third World Quarterly 31, no. 5 (July 2010): 803–815.

[2] Ibid.

[3] Augustus Richard Norton, Hezbollah: A Short History, 1St ed. (Princeton University Press, 2007), 132.

[4] Ibid., 133.

[5] Ibid., 132.

[6] Ibid.

[7] Ibid., 134.

[8] “Hezbollah Seizes Israel Soldiers,” BBC, July 12, 2006, sec. Middle East, http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/5171616.stm.

[9] “Hezbollah Warns Israel over Raids,” BBC, July 12, 2006, sec. Middle East, http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/5173078.stm.

[10] Ibid.

[11] “Hezbollah Sharply Rejects Cease-Fire, Say It Will Continue Rocket Strikes | Fox News,” Fox News, July 17, 2006, http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,203908,00.html.

[12] Ibid.

[13] “Rice Urges ‘urgent and Enduring’ Mideast Peace,” Msnbc.com, July 25, 2006, sec. Mideast/N. Africa, http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/14018618/ns/world_news-mideast_n_africa/t/rice-urges-urgent-enduring-mideast-peace/.

[14] “Hezbollah Sharply Rejects Cease-Fire, Say It Will Continue Rocket Strikes | Fox News”; Jim Rutenberg, “Despite Joint Statement on Mideast, Strains Emerge as U.S. Supports Israel’s Campaign,” The New York Times, July 17, 2006, sec. International / Middle East, http://www.nytimes.com/2006/07/17/world/middleeast/17diplo.html.

[15] Rutenberg, “Despite Joint Statement on Mideast, Strains Emerge as U.S. Supports Israel’s Campaign.”

[16] “Israel Gears up for Massive Ground Assault as World Dithers | Current Affairs | DW.DE | Null”, July 22, 2006, http://www.dw.de/dw/article/0,,2107137,00.html.

[17] Ibid.

[18] Rutenberg, “Despite Joint Statement on Mideast, Strains Emerge as U.S. Supports Israel’s Campaign.”

[19] Sabrina Tavernise, “A Night of Death and Terror for Lebanese Villagers,” The New York Times, July 31, 2006, sec. International / Middle East, http://www.nytimes.com/2006/07/31/world/middleeast/31scene.html; “Israeli Warplanes Strike Targets Deep in Lebanon,” Msnbc.com, July 31, 2006, sec. Mideast/N. Africa, http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/14100258/ns/world_news-mideast_n_africa/t/israeli-warplanes-strike-targets-deep-lebanon/.

[20] “Israel Rejects U.N. Involvement in Peacekeeping Force, Probe of Mission Bombing | Fox News”, July 28, 2006, http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,206035,00.html.

[21] Tavernise, “A Night of Death and Terror for Lebanese Villagers.”

[22] Ibid.

[23] Steven Erlanger and Hassan M. Fattah, “Israel Suspending Lebanon Air Raids After Dozens Die,” The New York Times, July 31, 2006, sec. International / Middle East, http://www.nytimes.com/2006/07/31/world/middleeast/31mideast.html.

[24] “CNN.com – Anderson Cooper 360° Blog-Seeing Red in Israel”, July 31, 2006, http://www.cnn.com/CNN/Programs/anderson.cooper.360/blog/2006/07/seeing-red-in-israel.html.

[25] Erlanger and Fattah, “Israel Suspending Lebanon Air Raids After Dozens Die.”

[26] “Israeli Warplanes Strike Targets Deep in Lebanon.”

[27] “Israel Rejects U.N. Involvement in Peacekeeping Force, Probe of Mission Bombing | Fox News.”

[28] Steven Erlanger and Richard A. Oppel Jr, “A Disciplined Hezbollah Surprises Israel With Its Training, Tactics and Weapons,” The New York Times, August 7, 2006, sec. International / Middle East, http://www.nytimes.com/2006/08/07/world/middleeast/07hezbollah.html.

[29] “Lebanon’s Two Fighting Forces,” BBC, July 22, 2006, sec. Middle East, http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/5205930.stm.

[30] Ibid.

[31] Erlanger and Jr, “A Disciplined Hezbollah Surprises Israel With Its Training, Tactics and Weapons”; “Acts of War Raise Risk to Region,” BBC, July 13, 2006, sec. Middle East, http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/5177346.stm.

[32] Erlanger and Jr, “A Disciplined Hezbollah Surprises Israel With Its Training, Tactics and Weapons”; “Israel Complains Hezbollah Used Russian-Made Missiles | Fox News”, August 18, 2006, http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,209162,00.html.

[33] Erlanger and Jr, “A Disciplined Hezbollah Surprises Israel With Its Training, Tactics and Weapons.”

[34] “Israel Complains Hezbollah Used Russian-Made Missiles | Fox News”; Erlanger and Jr, “A Disciplined Hezbollah Surprises Israel With Its Training, Tactics and Weapons.”

[35] Erlanger and Jr, “A Disciplined Hezbollah Surprises Israel With Its Training, Tactics and Weapons.”

[36] Ibid.

[37] Ibid.

[38] “Mideast Conflict Impacts Oil Prices Worldwide,” Msnbc.com, July 14, 2006, sec. NBCNightlyNews, http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/13864423/ns/nbcnightlynews/t/mideast-conflict-impacts-oil-prices-worldwide/.

[39] Ibid.

[40] Warren Hoge, “Attacks Qualify as War Crimes, Officials Say,” The New York Times, July 20, 2006, sec. International / Middle East, http://www.nytimes.com/2006/07/20/world/middleeast/20nations.html.

[41] Ibid.

[42] “Little Dissent as Israelis Support War,” BBC, July 23, 2006, sec. Middle East, http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/5208718.stm.

[43] “Rally Offers Support to Israelis,” BBC, July 23, 2006, sec. UK, http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/5206954.stm.

[44] “Protests in UK at Israeli Action,” BBC, July 22, 2006, sec. UK, http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/5203450.stm.

[45] Robert Pear, “Rally Near White House Protests Violence in Mideast,” The New York Times, August 13, 2006, sec. Washington, http://www.nytimes.com/2006/08/13/washington/13protest.html.

[46] “Little Dissent as Israelis Support War.”

[47] Ibid.

[48] Germany is considered by many to be the lone economic power in Europe. Germany also supplies many countries with state-of-the-art German weaponry, one of those countries is the United States.

The Israeli-Arab Conflict

Central Connecticut State Univeristy

The Israeli-Arab Conflict

A look at the major events in the conflict since the Second World War

 

Daniel F Whalen

5/11/2010

A brief look at the two major wars, the founding of the PLO, and the peace process

Throughout the course of history no area in the world has seen so much strife and conflict as the area in which the nation of Israel now sits. Since the Hittites this region has seen more conflict than any other. Most recently the conflict stems from two parties, or ethnic groups, that want the land to be their own country. These two groups, the Palestinians and the Israelis, claim this region as their homeland. In more recent times the conflict between the two groups flared up shortly after the end of the Second World War. In the conflict there have seemed at times that peace is at hand, but this peace never amounts to a sustained peace.

After the end of the Second World War there were a great number of displaced Jews from Europe, most of whom had survived the horrors of Nazi occupation and the concentration camps. Without an actually country of their own the Jews tried to find a country that would allow them residence within their borders. With not result they decided to settle in what they consider their historical homeland, which was known as Palestine at that time. This land area of Palestine is where in the Bible the lands of Judah, Canaan, and Israel sat. To many religions this is the land of Abraham, but for the Jews it is the land of David the Biblical king of Judah and then the Kingdom of Israel. This would be the claim the Jewish people would use as for the founding of modern Israel.

The Israeli-Arab Conflict as it is today started in or about the year 1948 when the Jewish Provisional Government declared its independence when the British would start their withdrawal after the end of the British Mandate for Palestine[1]. For centuries prior to World War One this region was under the control of the Ottoman Empire and with the Ottoman defeat in the war the region that is modern day Israel and Jordan was given the British to administer. Britain however grew wary of the situation in what was then Palestine and found its self caught in a three-way conflict between them and the Jewish and Arab populations[2]. In the year 1947 Britain handed over the mandate to the newly formed United Nations[3]. It was with this that the United Nations General Assembly voted to divide Palestine into two states, UN Resolution 181, one under the control of Palestinians and the other under the control of Jews[4]. This would leave Jerusalem under international control however[5]. With the United States and the Soviet Union voting for this partition along with parts of South America and most of Europe[6] it would seem that there should not be a problem. However all of the Arab nations that were members of the United Nations at that time voted against the resolution[7]. Britain however abstained from the voting, most likely due to the past mandate. It is suggested since then that the reason the Europeans voted in favor of this because of guilt over the Holocaust. This is possible because most of Europe and the United States did look the other way when the Nazi regime rounded up the Jews for forced labor and death camps. Whatever the reason the European powers had for voting for this they did not foresee the level of violence that would overcome the region.

The Jewish Government at the time would accept the Resolution, for a number of reasons but primarily for strategic reasons[8]. The Palestinians rejected because the unbalanced distribution of land. On May 14th Israel declares its independence thus forming the State of Israel. It would be the next day that five Arab nations, Egypt, Transjordan (present day Jordan), Lebanon, Syria, and Iraq, would invade Israel in support of the Palestinians and the Palestinian militia[9]. One would think the onslaught of Arabs would be too much to the Israeli forces to handle, but it is important to keep in mind that most of the Jews in Israel came from Europe.   They had experience fighting the Nazis in resistance movements, which is invaluable military experience. Many had been trained by the British; they were also much better armed and motivated fighting for their new country[10]. Many of the Arab countries prior to this were colonies to various European powers, for example Egypt was a colony of Britain, but did not receive the level of training as compared to European armies. The exact reason why the Arab countries would reject the Resolution and invade the newly declared Jewish state is unknown, but there was plenty of hostility between the Jews and Arabs prior to this because the Jews formed armed mobs and militias that went about “cleansing” the land of Palestinian towns and villages[11]. Cleansing is a term used the Israeli military, it means more or less to massacre[12]. A lesson they learned from the Nazis. This hostility would continue and involve the whole region.

There would be relative peace after this brief war. The peace, or calm in the action, would last for the better part of two decades. That is not to say that both sides, the Israelis and Arabs got along.   Actions would be taken by the Arabs to press the Palestinian issue. The most notable of actions was the founding of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) in year 1964. The PLO is more or less an umbrella, or bloc, organization containing smaller Palestinian organizations brought together as one larger group. For the first few years after it’s founding the PLO was mainly under the direction of the Arab League[13]. The original doctrine of the PLO was to drive the “Jews into the sea.[14]” This is a bold statement for an organization that did not have a standing army or funds to arm an army. This maybe why over time the PLO would become a loose collection of political and more associated with terrorist organizations. It would not be until Yasser Arafat takes control of the PLO that the PLO sees some political success. Today one hardly hears of the PLO.

Perhaps the most important part in this conflict that has had long term effects that resonate to today was the Six Day War in June of 1967. This was a quick war in which Israel military, Israeli Defense Force (IDF), dispatched of the Arab armies with ease. Israel attacks Egypt, Syria, and Jordan for reasons known to them. By the end of the six days of battle Israel close to tripled the size of its territory. From Egypt Israel seizes the Gaza Strip and the Sinai Peninsula, the Golan Heights from Syria, and the West Bank for Jordan[15]. It was said in peace negations Egypt would regain the Sinai Peninsula and the Golan Heights would be returned to Syria[16], however Israel would remain in control of these territories along with the Gaza Strip and West Bank. The Gaza Strip and West Bank would become the strongholds for the Palestinians; almost like the ghettos the Jews were forced to live in during the Second World War. It can be said that the one thing the Jewish people took out of the Holocaust was how to isolate people they wanted to have limited contact with.

Another war of importance in this conflict would be the Yom Kipper War fought in October of 1973. Much in a the way many feel the Second World War was a extension of the First World War, the Yom Kipper War is seen as a extension of the Six Day War. With Iraq taking the place of Jordan, the belligerents remained the same other wise. This war would start with an Egyptian invasion of the Israeli occupied Sinai Peninsula. With great success the Egyptians would halt their advance and would dig in to hold their positions, leaving Syria to invade from the North from the Golan Heights. Once the IDF regained its wits it repulsed the invading armies and drove deep into Syria and Egypt. These two crushing defeats for the Arab nations at the hands of the IDF are nothing short of embarrassing. It is clear that there is not a balance of power in this region with the Arab armies being routed all the time.

Peace in the Israeli-Arab conflict is possible, but it will come at a high price for all those involved. The fighting has gone on for such a long time it is only natural that the belligerents grow disgusted of it. There are renewed calls for a two state solution to the conflict.   From all outward signs the majority of Palestinians seem to favor that. There are issues that need to be resolved first and issues that stand in the way. An important issue that stands in the way is demographics[17]. There are an estimated five millions Jewish people in Israel and the occupied territories, with about 1.3 millions Arabs in Israel and an estimated 4 million in the Gaza Strip and West Bank alone[18].   What makes this an issue is that the infra-structure for the Palestinians to support so many people in a small amount of space just is not able to do it. In news footage of the Gaza Strip and West Bank the Palestinians live in near squalor conditions. The occupied territories are designed now to keep the Palestine’s in them and out of Israel, similar to the ghetto system used by the Nazis.

Another issue that has to be resolved is the question of Jewish settlements in the occupied territories and the IDF withdrawing from the occupied territories. Even moderate voices within the Israeli government believe that the Jewish settlements should be abandoned and the IDF’s presence in the occupied territories should come to and end[19]. Doing this would not only be symbolic, but would show the Arab governments that the Israelis are willing to live peacefully. This would also put pressure on the Arab countries to live peacefully and not be the aggressor.

Lastly is the issue of American involvement in the region. Many around the world view the United States as a strong supporter of Israel. The United States needs to settle on its foreign policy, oil policy, and strategic polices for the region before anything between the Israelis and Arabs can be settled[20]. Since the 1991 Gulf War the United States has been involved in the geo-politics of the Middle East. Also with the 2003 invasion of Iraq by the United States only went farther in destabilizing the region. Since that invasion Iran has stepped up anti-Israeli rhetoric, calling for an end of the state of Israel.

Chances for peace in the Israeli-Arab Conflict seem to be fleeting, although many people are hopeful that peace can be achieved. There was the symbol of future peace when Yasser Arafat and Yitzhak Rabin shook hands at the White House while Bill Clinton was President in 1993 when both accepted the Oslo Accords. In the United States and around the world the footage of this must have been shown a millions times. But when there are symbols of peace they seem to be false or halfhearted attempts at peace. The problem they will continue to have is that on both sides each new generation is exposed to greater violence. Once the violence can end peace will be closer.

Bibliography

Bard, Mitchell Geoffrey. Myths and Facts: A Guide to the Arab-Israeli Conflict. 3 ed. New York: American-Israeli Cooperative Enterprise (Aice), 2006.

“Dis73a03 Yom Kippur War.” USC – University of Southern California. http://www.usc.edu/dept/ancntr/Paris-in-LA/Database/Case-DB/Arab-Isr-67-73/dis73a03.html (accessed May 10, 2010).

Drummond, Dorothy W. Holy Land, Whose Land? Modern Dilemma, Ancient Roots (2nd ed. Revised). 2nd ed. terre haute: fairhurst press, 2004.

Farsoun, Samih K., and Christina E. Zacharia. Palestine and the Palestinians. Boulder: Westview Pr (Trd), 1997.

Gopin, Marc. Holy War, Holy Peace: How Religion Can Bring Peace to the Middle East. New York: Oxford University Press, USA, 2002.

University of Colorado . “HISTORY OF THE ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN CONFLICT.” HISTORY OF THE ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN CONFLICT. http://www.colorado.edu/geography/class_homepages/geog_1982_s10/Conflict%20Timeline.pdf (accessed April 21, 2010).

Herzog, Chaim. Heroes of Israel: Profiles of Jewish Courage. 1st ed ed. New York – Boston: Little Brown and Company, 1989.

LeBor, Adam. “Zion and the Arabs.” World Policy Journal 24, no. Winter 2007/2008 (2007): 61-75.

“Our Documents – Press Release Announcing U.S. Recognition of Israel (1948).” Welcome to OurDocuments.gov. http://www.ourdocuments.gov/doc.php?flash=old&doc=83 (accessed May 1, 2010).

Qumsiyeh, Mazin B.. Sharing the Land of Canaan: Human Rights and the Israeli-Palestinian Struggle. London: Pluto Press, 2004.

“START | Terrorist Organization Profile.” START | Home. http://www.start.umd.edu/start/data/tops/terrorist_organization_profile.asp?id=4182 (accessed May 1, 2010).

“UN General Assembly Resolution 181.” Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs. http://www.mfa.gov.il/MFA/Peace+Process/Guide+to+the+Peace+Process/UN+General+Assembly+Resolution+181.htm (accessed April 21, 2010).

 

[1] http://www.ourdocuments.gov/doc.php?flash=old&doc=83

[2] World Policy Journal p.64

[3] Ibid p.64

[4] http://www.yale.edu/lawweb/avalon/un/res181.htm

[5] ibid

[6] http://www.mfa.gov.il/MFA/Peace+Process/Guide+to+the+Peace+Process/UN+General+Assembly+Resolution+181.htm

[7] ibid

[8] http://www.colorado.edu/geography/class_homepages/geog_1982_s10/Conflict%20Timeline.pdf

[9] http://youth.najah.edu/article_view.asp?newsID=3661&cat=6

[10] World Policy Journal p. 66

[11] Sharing the Land of Canaan

[12] ibid

[13] umd

[14] umd

[15] Colorado

[16] Chaim Herzog, Heroes of Israel p. 253

[17] Sharing the Land

[18] Ibid p. 198

[19] Holy Land, Whose Land

[20] ibid

The Sheep of Christ

Central Connecticut State University

The Sheep of Christ

How Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson over estimated their importance

Daniel Whalen

12/12/2009

A brief overview and look at how Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson took different paths to gain lobbying power for the Religious Right.  With their methods one can see how they failed to push any Christian agenda forward.


 

In the early part of the United States the citizens felt the country should be a country with a religious orientation.  The overwhelming majority of people were Protestants.   Protestantism is a made up of many dominations, many of which have beliefs that overlap each other.   Religion has always been a part of the United States in one form or another.  It was not until after the Second World War that religion had a reawaking and reinserted it’s self into everyday American life.  Most of this has come from the ever-shrinking Protestant majority.   Many have selected to follow those who have extreme and outrageous views of what the country and world should be.   To better understand this one must look at two of the movements most notable leaders and see why people are driven to their point of view.  Also it is important to see if these men are actual leaders or looking for something else such as money and notoriety.

As the post-war era was beginning a new war was beginning.   The new enemy was the atheist Soviet Union.  Under communism all forms of religion were discouraged and persecuted.  With the Soviet Union as a political and militarily enemy it was only natural for the religious to choose it as an enemy.  With its godless society it was easy for the religious leaders to shepherd a flock.  These factors would forge a partnership with some of the top preachers in the United States and its elected officials.   A partnership that over the years would try to define a nation and push towards sites people never thought possible.

In the 1950’s the United States was coming out of World War II the victors and engaged in the Korean Conflict to stop the spread of Communism.  Americans were not just looking for leadership in the war against the Communist, but a spiritual guide.  One of these guides was Rev. Billy Graham. We today think of Rev. Graham as a man who periodically was on television during prime time interrupting our favorite programs.   But he was more than that, some would say he pulled America from the abyss.  He was not out for power, nor was he out for political gain.  By the time of his preaching had ceased he had established a legacy like no other.  He also advised a number of presidents from Eisenhower to Clinton.  This relationship he had with Presidents would not go unnoticed by preachers that would try to follow in his footsteps.

Pat Robertson is a man we all know is known for saying outlandish things from time to time.  A person from outside the United States surely would think he is insane for the remarks that he has made over a variety of issues.  Born Marion Gordon Robertson on March 22, 1930 to Absalom Willis and Gladys Robertson in the state of Virginia.  His father was a Democratic Senator from Virginia from 1946 to 1966; this gave Pat a leg up in politics[1][2].  This is important because as Pat becomes a televangelist he will champion causes dear to religious conservatives.  An ability to know the workings of government is a vital tool to have.  In 1960 Pat would found the Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN), the first Christian television network in the United States[3].  As the CBN evolved over the decades it would become the soapbox from which Pat Robertson would spread his message.  In 1989, after a failed run for President, Robertson would form the Christian Coalition to promote the religious conservative agenda within the United States[4].

Jerry Falwell was also from Virginia and started the Thomas Road Baptist Church with 35 members in June of 1956[5].  Falwell would not have the background of Pat Robertson, nor would he have the ambitions of Robertson.  Jerry Falwell would have a television show that would never reach the heights of the CBN and he would never run for office.   But he had the same impact on the religious conservative movement that Pat Robertson had.   Falwell in 1979 would found the Moral Majority with the hopes of returning America to Christian morality[6].  Falwell would want to have the power Robertson had, but he would go about it in a different way with different results.

As the decade of the 1970’s was about to close, the United States was at a crossroad.  The 1960’s brought an end to school prayer with the Supreme Courts ruling on it[7].  Along with this the Supreme Court ruled that abortion is legal with the Roe v. Wade ruling in 1973.  These rulings and the open sexuality and drug use were emerging threats to the values of the conservative Christian people in the United States.   They also were concerned with passage of the Equal Rights Amendment, which a staggering 91% of conservative Christians against it[8].  Also among their issues was reestablishing school prayer, teaching creationism in schools, and homosexuality[9].  They had lost hope in President Carter, himself a born-again Christian, in getting these ruling reversed.   The Religious Right as the conservative Christians are known as needed a new leaders to pin their hopes on, to forge a new trail for the country.  They knew they would have to form a voting bloc that can in some way sway the election in 1980.  The Religious Right would start this process of organizing in 1979.  Prior to this it is important to point out that they did have smaller groups that acted more like think tanks and never went to the methods we would see in the 19080’s..  One of these early think tanks was the Religious Roundtable founded in the late 1970’s[10].  The Roundtable was a collection of preachers, television evangelists, wealthy business, conservative anti-feminists, and lastly politicians gathered together to promote an agenda put forth by the Religious Right[11].  The most notable of these meetings for the Religious Roundtable happen in Dallas, Texas in August of 1980[12].   In attendance would be two television evangelists who had a taste for power, Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson[13].  It was at this event that a candidate named Ronald Reagan gave a speech and within that speech said, “I know this is nonpartisan, so you can’t endorse me, but I want you to know that I endorse you.”[14]  To the ears of Robertson and Falwell these words would be like magic, a gateway to the most powerful office in the country if Reagan gets elected.  Actually to them it meant that they could harness the power to shape the country as they see fit if they can get their followers out to vote.  The difference is they each had a different idea of how to achieve that power.  Not only can this be used for personal gain, it would give these to men a key to the White House, ideal for marketing to their followers.

For Falwell this remark by Reagan would be a godsend.  Falwell already had the Moral Majority established and knew he could make it into a powerful lobbing machine.   He just needed away to make it known it was a force to be reckoned with.  To make his voice heard he would stage rallies in what he called “I Love America.”  He would have these rallies in 44 state capitols for which would not only be political rallies, but anti-abortion rallies also[15].  This was the kind of mobilization that could benefit the Republican Party[16].  The negative to these rallies would be Falwell and his Moral Majority would be supported by mainly by fellow Baptists[17] and white fundamentalists[18].  The issue with this is that the  message Falwell wants to spread is already focused onto his core following.  There is not any expansion into mainstream America.    His Moral Majority in reality is the Moral Minority.  Falwell fails to see this and insists he has an impact on policy.

Meanwhile as this is developing for Jerry Falwell, Pat Robertson focuses spreading his message from his show the 700 Club.  The powerbrokers in the Religious Right decided that Robertson would not be the vocal point for their political ambitions because they felt that his background, being a Senators son and having a Law Degree from Yale, he would be seen as to elitist[19].   That is why Falwell was chosen, he was easier to mold into what the political professionals wanted and he had never publicly indentified his political leanings[20].  Even though he was not in the forefront, Robertson would be able to maneuver behind the scenes.  This would put him in the position of picking up the pieces if Falwell failed and have a framework to build his own organization.  But early on Pat Robertson is content at letting Falwell have the limelight[21].  Sometimes it is best to be in the background letting others fail.

The Religious Right had many issues on their plate; they had their champions to promote their causes.  Hanging all their hopes on to the Republican Party starting with Ronald Reagan would be a double-edged sword for them.  The Religious Right, mostly Jerry Falwell during the Reagan years, felt that they not only helped Reagan get the Republican nomination but got him elected President[22].  Falwell had proven to the Republicans that the Religious Right can be a force, or that they are sheep that can be easily manipulated with very little persuasion.  The Republican Party has been known as the Big Business Party, which meant siding with the Religious Right is an odd mix.  The Republicans notice how charismatic the evangelical leaders are and how Falwell is a lightening rod for attention.  Falwell between the years of 1973-1997 would have a total of 358 news stories written mentioning him or the Moral Majority, where as Pat Robertson and his Christian Coalition would have 234[23].  This exposure would back fire on Falwell, making him a bit of a laughing stock.  All that really happened was Falwell was exposed as the megalomaniac he was. Falwell believed that he helped garner votes that the Republicans might have never have had.  With all this by 1988 the Republicans had a list of 1,000 religious leaders they could manipulate, not on that list were Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson[24].  Perhaps Robertson was left out of that list because he was planning to run for President.

Pat Robertson felt that Reagan and the Republicans had let down the evangelicals of the Religious Right.  He would try to get the nomination for the Republicans, but would lose out to George Bush.  This would leave a sour taste in the mouth of Robertson, prompting him to follow in the footsteps of Jerry Falwell and found his own lobbying group.   With the Christian Coalition Robertson would be able to project perceived power within the Republican Party.  Where as  Falwell failed to move any of the Religious Rights ahead with Reagan[25].   In fact he had done so little that the Moral Majority had to shut down operations.  Falwell would say his church needs him as an excuse for shutting down the Moral Majority[26].  The reality was he was marginalized and played by the Republicans to garner votes which in the end meant supporters moved on to other groups..  Later in his life Falwell would still think he was a powerbroker and would always be a talking head on the cables news.  He was reduced to being a talking mouth with nothing to back up his words.   Falwell even endorsed then Vice President Bush in the 1988 election in the hopes of having the success he was not able to have with President Reagan[27].  This is odd because Bush was uneasy with evangelicals; this goes back to the 1980 election[28].  Bush and his inner circle knew that the evangelicals would vote for anyone who would give them hope for pushing their addenda.  George W. Bush would do this in the 2000 election with great success, but it is not the reason he won the election.  Robertson having been in the wings during the Reagan years was able to build a network and recruit people to help him, such as Ralph Reed.

The Christian Coalition learned from the failures of the Moral Majority.  Falwell focused too much on the Presidency and the larger national scope of his movement.   Robertson with the help of Ralph Reed would focus more on the smaller local, state and congressional elections[29].  Many of the issues people in the Religious Right hold dear, like school prayer and the teaching of creationism over evolution, can be achieved more easily in the smaller elections.  By focusing on these smaller elections, like for school boards, the Christian Coalition can stack the majority of board votes into their favor.  It would seem that Pat Robertson learned by the mistakes Jerry Falwell made.  The Christian Coalition would also tell the people running for election not to mention they are associated with the Christian Coalition[30].  Unlike the Moral Majority, the Christian Coalition was quick to realize there is a stigma with being associated with Christian activism.   They did not want to scare away independent and moderate voters.  Interesting by doing so in the state of Washington the Christian Coalition along with like minded groups were able to gain control of the Republican Party.  With this control they put forth a campaign platform targeting witchcraft and other New Age religions[31].  Needless to say with a platform that out of touch with mainstream society.   It is hard to fathom a campaign platform like that having any success in the United States outside of 17th century Plymouth Colony.  Another tool the Christian Coalition uses to influence the vote is voter guides[32].  The voter guides will give the voter a comparison of the issues each candidate supports and opposes.

In the 1990’s these two men, Falwell and Robertson, would see the focus of attention shift away from them.  The country was flourishing under the guidance of President Clinton and the moral attitudes of everyday people were more relaxed.   The society was more excepting of homosexuals and women.  Societies over time tend to become more liberal and tolerant as a way of adapting to the growth of the society.  This would send evangelicals into a tailspin, eventually make them more aggressive in their views and opinions.  In 1996 the Christian Coalition force Republican candidate for President Bob Dole into adding abortion to the issues covered by his campaign[33].  The Religious Right, championed by the Christian Coalition, would also try to gain control of the public schools and the media[34].  The ability to control information is a powerful weapon.   It is as if the Religious Right would prefer that the United States be a totalitarian type government instead of a democracy.  Ideally under this government there would be one religion because evangelicals are intolerant of all other religions, especially Islam[35].  Like with Reagan, the Religious Right hoped that Dole would give them greater power within government to achieve these goals.   The defeat of Dole would be a major setback and can be said the end of the Religious Right as a legitimate national lobbying force[36].

From 1996 on the two former power holder of the Religious Right have been reduced to men who would from time to time make absurd remarks to make themselves seem pertinent in today’s society.  Robertson would say the Constitution “is a marvelous document for self-government by Christian people,” discounting the fact that our government does not indorse any religion of any kind[37].  He would also say that Orlando, Florida would be destroyed by a meteor for having rainbow flags during “Gay Pride Month,” for evoking God’s wrath[38].  Robertson would go as far as saying that an equal rights amendment in Iowa is support for women to “leave their husbands, kill their children, practice witchcraft, destroy capitalism, and become lesbians.[39]”  Falwell would not be outdone by Robertson however.  In 1999 Falwell would say the Antichrist would come to us as a Jew and that the children’s show The Teletubbies was a front for homosexual propaganda[40].  He would also blame the 9/11 attacks, not on Islamic extremists, but on gays, pro-choice groups, and people for the separation of church and state[41].  They both would say these things not just to draw attention to themselves, but to assert themselves as relevant.  The fact of the matter is the country had moved on leaving them behind.

Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson were, Robertson still is, two men that were power hungry and driven by greed.   For all they have done the bottom line at the end of the day is that both men have profited by all that they have done.   Why else have a television network but to gain wealth, and with that wealth, comes power.   In a capitalist system greed comes in a variety of different things.   Falwell was a man from humble beginnings that was gives a taste of things on the big stage, and he got addicted to it.  Robertson saw how people treated his father and wanted that same treatment.  The problem for both men is that religious mavericks in the United States history will forget who you are.   The masses within the American society will listen for a will and move on.   The average American could not say with any amount of certainty who was the first preacher to come up with the “Social Gospel” or who decided that communism was unchristian. Their statements alone show the importance of the separation of church and state.   Their view of religion is very archaic and most importantly goes against the equality the United States stands for.

Bibliography

Primary Sources

Brown, Ruth Murray. For a Christian America: A History of the Religious Right. Buffalo, NY: Prometheus Books, 2002.

This book is a detailed history of the Religious right from the 1970’s to the end of the century.  It’s primary focus in on Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell and how they were able to rise to power.  It was also a good tool to find other sources.

Moen, Matthew C.. Christian Right & Congress. Tuscaloosa: University Alabama Press, 1989.

This book focused on how the Christian Right influenced Congress during the Reagan years.  The book is detailed and shows why it would be important for the Christian Coalition to focus on smaller elections instead of the Presidential election.

Smith, Christian. Christian America? What Evangelicals Really Want. 1 ed. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2000.

This book was a good source of material on how the Evangelicals more vocal leaders like Pat Robertson seem to be out of touch with the everyday Evangelical.

Spring, Joel. Political Agendas for Education:  From the Religious Right to the Green Party, Third Edition. 3 ed. Mawah, N.J.: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc., 2005.

This book provided me with insight into the Christian Right and their educational agenda.  Also I was able to get some good information about the Christian Coalition.

Spring, Joel. Political Agendas for Education: From the Christian Coalition To the Green Party (Sociocultural, Political, and Historical Studies in Education). 1 ed. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum, 1997.

This book provided me with information about the 1996 election and how the Christian Right influenced Bob Dole’s campaign

Young, Perry Deane. God’s Bullies: Power, Politics and Religious Tyranny. 1st ed. Austin: Holt Rinehart & Winston, 1982.

This insightful book discusses the rise of Jerry Falwell and the religious right.  The writer suggests that the religious right is more power than it actually was.  The book also warns us of what might happen if religious conservatives gain too much power.

Marley, David John. “Ronald Reagan and the Splintering of the Christian Right.” Journal of Church and State 48 (2006): 851-868.

This article is what got my paper going.  He talks about how Reagan and the Republicans held a carrot out to the people in the Religious Right.  Discussed is how Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell go two separate paths leading to different goals. I also used a quote from this article in my paper from one of his sources.

Briggs, Kenneth. “Evangelical Preachers Gatjher to Polish Their Politics.” New York Times, August 21, 1980, sec. B.

A brief article about how the Religious Roundtable gathered with about how many people will be there.  Has listed a number of speakers, mostly Republicans.  Most notably is Ronald Reagan.

New York Times, “Robertson Letter Attacks Feminist,” August 26, 1992, sec. A.

This is a great article with Robertson attacking a equal rights amendment in Iowa.  A perfect example of his outlandish remarks.

“Robertson’s Revenge: Gay Flag Flap leads to Orlando Ban.” Church & State , September 1998.

A humorous article about how Pat Robertson predicted a end to the city of Orlando, Florida.  He says because of the support and tolerance for gays the city will be destroyed by God.

Shribman, David . “The Christian Coalition sucks wind.” Fortune, July 19, 1999.

This article mentions how the Christian Coalition is losing influence and seems to me spinning out of control.  Also has another quote by Pat Robertson.

Smith, Christian. Christian America? What Evangelicals Really Want. 1 ed. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2000.

This book was a good source of material on how the Evangelicals more vocal leaders like Pat Robertson seem to be out of touch with the everyday Evangelical.

Secondary Sources

“Evangelicals and the Media.” MIT. http://web.mit.edu/comm-forum/forums/evangelicals.html (accessed October 17, 2009).

This is a transcript of a roundtable lecture on the evangelical cause.  Not as insightful as i would have hope, but did get me headed into the right direction.

Gaily, Phil . “Evangelist and Demcrats’ Cheif Trade Fire.” New York Times, March 2, 1986.

This article wrote about how Pat Robertson may run for President and how Jerry Falwell endorsed George H. W. Bush.  Pat Robertson also calls the head of the Democratic Party anti-Christian.

Gaustad, Edwin S., and Leigh Schmidt. The Religious History of America: The Heart of the American Story from Colonial Times to Today. Revised ed. SanFrancisco: HarperSanFrancisco, 2004.

This provided me with the basic elements that I needed to start my research.   The information was general, but it had lot of insight and useful information was gathered from this book.

Herbers, John . “Ultraconservative Evangelicals a Surging Force in Politics.” New York Times, August 17, 1980.

Another article about the Religious Roundtable meeting in Dallas, Texas.  Pointed out is how political activism is new to the Religious Right.  Points out the leaders of this movement are Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson.

Hicks, John. “The Political Subsistence of the Religious Right:   Why the Christian Right Survives and Does Not Thrive By John Hicks.” American Religious Experience at WVU. http://are.as.wvu.edu/jhicks.htm (accessed December 17, 2009).

This article goes into how in the 1990’s the Religious Right through various groups gained control of smaller localized elections.  Also covers some of the issues that are cherished by evangelical Christians.

Martin, William. With God On Our Side: The Rise of the Religious Right in America. New York City: Broadway, 2005.

McDaniel, Charles. “The Decline of the Separation Principle in the Baptist Tradition of the Religious Liberty.” Journal of Church and State 50 (2008): 413-430.

This article was useful to explain how Jerry Falwell and the Moral Majority was a extremist form of the Baptist faith.  It was interesting to read that mainstream Baptists did not see things the way Jerry Falwell did.

Moen, Matthew C.. Christian Right & Congress. Tuscaloosa: University Alabama Press, 1989.

This book focused on how the Christian Right influenced Congress during the Reagan years.  The book is detailed and shows why it would be important for the Christian Coalition to focus on smaller elections instead of the Presidential election.

“A Sea-Change Election.” The Nation, March 31, 2008.

A brief recap of how in the 2000 election the Religious Right is mobilized much like it was in 1980.

Boston, Rob. “The real Legacy of the Reverend Jerry Falwell.” The Humanist, Sep. – Oct. 2007.

In the article Jerry Falwell is criticized for his political leanings and for many of the statements he has made during his life.   Summarizes his extreme views.

Briggs, Kenneth. “Debate Is Growing.” New York Times, October 3, 1980, sec. A.

This article draws awareness to the growing influence of the Religious Right.  Important thing in this article is it has Pat Robertson backing away form political involvement in the 1980 election.

“About Liberty – Bio – Dr. Jerry Falwell – Liberty University.” Liberty University. http://www.liberty.edu/index.cfm?PID=6921 (accessed December 17, 2009).

A brief and positive look at the life of Rev. Jerry Falwell.  A good source for personal information

“Moral Majority – Home.” Moral Majority – Home. http://www.moralmajority.com/ (accessed December 1, 2009).

This site is not the original Moral Majority, but a rehash of it controlled by Jonathan Falwell, Jerry Falwells son.

“PatRobertson.com – The Official Site of Pat Robertson.” PatRobertson.com – The Official Site of Pat Robertson. http://www.patrobertson.com/ (accessed December 28, 2009).

A detailed background and message from Pat Robertson.  From reading it one would think Robertson was a saint.

Sullivan, Joseph . “Coalition opens Campaign To Ban Meditation Classes.” New York Times, February 19, 1976.

In this article the attack against New Age religions from evangelicals is spoken about.

“The Religious Right and the Christian Coalition.” Wake Forest University — Winston-Salem, North Carolina. http://www.wfu.edu/~matthetl/perspectives/thirty.html (accessed October 22, 2009).

This is a transcript of a lecture on the Religious Right and the Christian Coalition.  Did not gather much useful information, but did give me avenues to search under for other information.

Vecsey, George. “Militant Television Preachers Try to Weld Fundamentalist Christians’ Political Power.” New York Times, January 21, 1980, sec. A.

This article highlights Jerry Falwell and his goals for the Christian Right.  Also within the article a mention of a rally led by Pat Robertson with Republican candidates.  Jimmy Carters problems with the Christian conservatives are discussed.

“Voter Guides | Christian Coalition of America.” Christian Coalition of America | Defending America’s Godly Heritage!. http://www.cc.org/voter_guides (accessed December 17, 2009).

This page has a voter guide from the 2008 election.  It shows how John McCain and Barak Obama opposed and supported things important to evangelical Christians.

“Why Jerry Falwell Killed the Moral Majority.”  University of Virginia Library. http://etext.virginia.edu/etcbin/toccer-new2?id=HadWhyk.xml&images=images/modeng&data=/texts/english/modeng/parsed&tag=public&part=1&division=div1 (accessed November 1, 2009).

A different take on how and why Jerry Falwell disbanded the Moral Majority.  Unlike many of my other sources this one does not mention how the Moral Majority went bankrupt.

Wilcox, Clyde , Ted Jelen, and Sharon Linzoy. “Rethinking the Reasonableness of the Religious Right.” Review of Religious Research 36 (1995): 263-276.

This article discusses how the Moral Majority is against many issues, most notably the Equal Rights Amendment.

Wilcox, Clyde . “America’s Radical Right Revisited. A Comparison of the Activists in Christian Right Organizations From the 1960s and the 1980s.” Sociological Analysis 48 (1987): 46-57.

The article is a comparison of religious right groups in the 60’s and 80’s.  Has plenty of information about their views and how they changed over the years.  Many useful tables with supporting information.

Wilcox, Clyde . “Premillennialists at the Millennium: Some Reflections on the Christian Right in the Twenty-first Century.” Sociology of Religion 55 (1994): 243-261.

This article deals with how Pat Robertson and the Christian Coalition is a raising force in politics.  Points out the strategy used by the Christian Coalition and some of the issues they had on their agenda.

“YouTube  – Jesse Jackson debates Falwell about terrorism.” YouTube – Broadcast Yourself.             . http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UY71nzkZHKQ&feature=related (accessed October 21, 2009).

A lively debate between Jesse Jackson and Jerry Falwell.  Interesting because they are both Baptists but disagree and many issues.

“YouTube- Jerry Falwell claim 9/11 was caused by gays             .” YouTube- Broadcast Yourself.             . http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MK_hYsCkDH4 (accessed October 21, 2009).

A example of Jerry Falwell putting his foot in his mouth.  Shocking what this man believes and says.

“YouTube- Pat Robertson: “Islam Is Not a Religion”  YouTube- Broadcast Yourself.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GPVNaz6xvVY&feature=related (accessed October 21, 2009).

Pat Robertson expressing his intolerance to Islam.

“YouTube- Pat Robertson: Bush “Asking for the Wrath of God” YouTube- Broadcast Yourself.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H_zt8wFGX8I (accessed October 21, 2009).

Pat Robertson predicting the President George W. Bush will suffer at the hands of God for siding with the Saudi’s.

 

 


[6] Ruth Murray Brown, For A “Christian America”: A History of the Religious Right (Amherst, New York: Prometheus Books, 2002), 17

[7] Joel Spring, Political Agendas for Education (Mahwah, New Jersey: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 1997), 2

[8] Wilcox***

[9] Clyde Wilcox, “America’s Radical Right Revisited. A Comparison of the Activists in Christian Right Organizations from the 1960s and the 1980s,” Sociological Analysis 48 (1987): 54

[10] Ted G. Jelen, Sharon Linzey, Clyde Wilcox, “Rethinking the Reasonableness of the Religious Right,” Review of Religious Research 36 (1995): 264

[11] Kenneth A. Briggs, “Evangelical Preachers Gather to Polish Their Politics,” New York Times, August 21 1980, sec. B

[12] Kenneth A. Briggs, “Evangelical Preachers Gather to Polish Their Politics,” New York Times, August 21 1980, sec. B

[13] Kenneth A. Briggs, “Evangelical Preachers Gather to Polish Their Politics,” New York Times, August 21 1980, sec. B

[14] William Martin, With God on Our Side: The Rise of the Religious Right in America (New York: Broadway books, 1996), 216

[15] Ruth Murray Brown, 157

[16] Robert L. Borosage, “A Sea-Change Election?” The Nation, March 31, 2008, 6

[17] Ruth Murray Brown, 157

[18] Christian Smith, Christian America?: What Evangelicals Really Want (Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 2000

[19] Perry Deane Young, 197

[20] Perry Deane Young, 197

[21] Kenneth A. Briggs, “Debate is Growing on Legalities of Religious Activism,” New York Times, October 3, 1980, sec. A

[22]  John Herbers, “Ultraconservatives Evangelicals a Surging New Force in Politics,” New York Times, August 17,1980, sec. A

[23] Ruth Murray Brown, 160

[24] Sarah Posner, “God’s Profits,” Church & State, April 2008, 13

[25] David John Marley, 851

[26] Ruth Murray Brown, 161

[27] Phil Gaileys, “Evangelist and Democrats’ Chief Trade Fire,” New York Times, March 2, 1986 sec. A

[28] David John Marley, 859

[29] Clyde Wilcox, “Premillennialists at the Millennium: Some Reflections on the Christian Right in the Twenty-first Century,” Sociology of Religion 55 (1994) 251

[30] Clyde Wilcox, “Premillennialists at the Millennium: Some Reflections on the Christian Right in the Twenty-first Century,” Sociology of Religion 55 (1994) 251

[31] Clyde Wilcox, “Premillennialists at the Millennium: Some Reflections on the Christian Right in the Twenty-first Century,” Sociology of Religion 55 (1994) 252

[33] Joel Spring, 5

[34] Joel Spring, 5

[35] Joel Spring, 11

[36] Ruth Murray Brown, 186

[37] David Shribman, “ The Christian Coalition sucks wind,” Fortune, July 19, 1999

[38] “Robertson’s Revenge: Gay Flag Flap leads to Orlando Ban,” Church & State, September, 1998, 15

[39] “Robertson Letter Attacks Feminists: Says Effort in Iowa Supports Witches and Child Killers,” New York Times, sec. A

[40] Rob Boston, “The Real Legacy of Reverend Jerry Falwell,” The Humanist, September-October, 2007, 36

[41] Rob Boston, “The Real Legacy of Reverend Jerry Falwell,” The Humanist, September-October, 2007, 36