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Faith and WarHow Christians Debated the Cold and Vietnam Wars$
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David E. Settje

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780814741337

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814741337.001.0001

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Introduction: Christianity and Foreign Policy, 1964–1975

Introduction: Christianity and Foreign Policy, 1964–1975

An Introductory Analysis

(p.1) Introduction: Christianity and Foreign Policy, 1964–1975
Faith and War

David E. Settje

NYU Press

This introductory chapter provides a background on Christianity's role in the Cold and Vietnam wars. Christians during the Cold War era generally detested the atheist mantra of the Soviet Union and People's Republic of China and felt duty bound to assist Christians oppressed inside communist nations. Yet other Christians countered this harsh anti-communism by questioning America's militarization and global antagonism, even as they agreed on the dangers posed by the USSR and PRC. Meanwhile, two views on diplomatic concerns emerged during the Vietnam War. The first is a persistent Cold War fear that backed the Vietnam War as necessary. The other is a belief that the war was unjust and the domino theory outdated. The conservatives who supported the Vietnam War also advocated a fundamentalist view of the world that denounced modernism and interfaith dialogues. In contrast, other Christians advocated global cooperation.

Keywords:   Christianity, Cold War, Vietnam War, USSR, PRC, communism, anti-communism, global cooperation, interfaith dialogues, modernism

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