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Christian nationalism is Christianity-affiliated religious nationalism. Christian nationalists focus primarily on internal politics, such as passing laws that reflect their view of Christianity and its role in political and social life. They are actively promoting religious (Christian) and nationalistic discourses in various fields of social life, from Politics and History, to Culture and Science. In Europe and the United States, Christian nationalism ranges from conservative to far right-wing.
Christian nationalistic movements often have complex leadership structure, depending on the nature of their relationship with local Church institutions. Some movements are more lay oriented, with symbolic clerical participation and indirect support of the local Church structures, and others are actually led or strongly influenced by local clergy. Involvement of clergy in various Christian nationalistic movements since the 19th century led to the development of particular form of Christian nationalism known as clerical nationalism (also known as clero-nationalism or clerico-nationalism). Some distinctive radicalized forms of clerical nationalism even led to the rise of clerical fascism on the far-right of the political spectrum in various European countries specially during the interwar period in the first half of 20th century.
In recent years there has been a growing sentiment of nationalism between both Catholics and Protestants in Brazil. Politicians like Magno Malta and Jair Bolsonaro, and political parties like Patriota promote ultraconservative ideas, like rejection of LGBT rights, opposition to abortion, and anti-secularism. Most Christian nationalists in Brazil are in favor of ecumenism, while attacking and rejecting contact with non-Christians, more specifically Muslims and atheists.
The Lebanese Front was a coalition of mainly Christian parties in the Lebanese Civil War. In the 1980s, Christian nationalism was pursued by the Maronite community. The Maronites sought to create a Christian mini-state. Christian nationalist Michel Aoun revolted against the Syrian Lebanese regime in 1990, but was defeated with Syrian Army support; all militias except pro-Syrian Hezbollah were disarmed by 1991.
In Poland, nationalism was always characterized by loyalty to the Roman Catholic Church. Groups like the National Revival of Poland use slogans like Wielka Polska Katolicka (Great Catholic Poland) and protest vigorously against legalization of gay marriage and abortion. Conservative religious groups connected with Radio Maryja are often accused of harboring nationalist and antisemitic attitudes.
Religious nationalism characterized by communal adherence to Eastern Orthodoxy and national Orthodox Churches is found in many states of Eastern Europe and in the Russian Federation. Many Russian Neo-Fascist and Neo-Nazi groups, such as the Russian National Unity, call for an increased role for the Russian Orthodox Church.
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The US movement was founded by Gerald L. K. Smith. It sold and distributed, inter alia, The International Jew, and subscribed to the antisemitic views embodied in The Protocols of the Elders of Zion which it also published. Founded in 1942, with the purpose to preserve America as a Christian nation being conscious of a highly organized campaign to substitute Jewish tradition for Christian tradition. Its purpose was also to oppose communism, one world government and immigration. It also aimed to fight mongrelization and all attempts to force the intermixture of the black and white races. It was effectively a political party, and promoted antisemitic and racist causes, particularly in St. Louis from the 1940s through the 1950s.
- Feldman et al.
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