Zara was sold into slavery as a little girl and witnessed many horrors throughout her childhood and young adulthood. This may have had a bearing on her founding the Cult of the Crimson Flame. Little is known of Zara's past before she started the Cult of the Crimson Flame. She made dubious claims of being Arabic (despite her fair skin, red hair and French accent) and being sold into slavery as a child, which caused her to form a deep hatred towards mankind. Using her skill with pyrotechnics, Zara could summon an eerie flame that would create messages that would scare cult members - known as 'flame slaves' - into obedience. Anyone who opposed the cult was consumed by illness and died shortly afterward.
The cult's activities attracted the attention of Wonder Woman when the daughter of a U.S. senator disappeared after having been involved in the cult. Traveling to the Crystal Temple of the Crimson Flame in Arabia, Wonder Woman confronts and defeats Zara and her cult. It is then revealed that the crimson flame was floating, burning liquid hydrogen and she was using a fire gun to appear to have control over the flame. The eerie voice was created with an elaborate sound system. The illness that consumed disobedient cultists is revealed to be psychosomatic.
The captured Zara is sent to Transformation Island, but is rescued by Eviless and becomes a member of the first incarnation of Villainy Inc. and avenges to seek revenge against Wonder Woman and Queen Hippolyta.
Zara has made very few appearances post-crisis, but she is depicted as Arabic and her flame powers appear to be inborn. She was once again a member of Villainy, Inc. under employ from Queen Clea. She battled Wonder Woman in the 1940's along with the rest of the group.
Recently, Zara has been mentioned as one of the inhabitants of the dark side of the moon, built by Alan Scott.