Faith-based diplomacy: Conservative Evangelicals and the United States Military

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Religion is becoming an increasingly important factor for theorists and policy makers alike in the consideration of United States foreign policy. In recent years a new school of faith-based diplomacy advocacy has emerged and begun to resonate with foreign policy practitioners. This article examines the efficacy of such faith-based approaches to foreign policy problems with a religious component and argues that such an approach is inherently flawed. The article argues that a combination of a distinct military culture, which feels itself morally superior to its civilian leadership and the activism of conservative evangelicals in the chaplaincy and military leadership makes such faith-based approaches unrealistic. While acknowledging a role for pluralist religious actors in foreign policy the article rejects a faith-based advocacy approach which can exacerbate rather than resolve foreign policy problems.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)475-498
Number of pages24
JournalPolitics and Religion
Issue number03
Early online date6 Sep 2013
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2014

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