Tuesday, June 26, 2012
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Ten EU foreign ministers participating in a “study group for the future of Europe” aim to exert pressure to transform the EU into a federation along the lines of the US.
Together they have prepared what the front-page headline in Die Presse describes as a “Plan for transformation into a European state.” On 19 June, the ten ministers presented an initial report to the EU officials who will likely benefit the most from the initiative: Commission President José Manuel Barroso, European Council President Herman Van Rompuy, European Central Bank President Mario Draghi and Eurogroup President Jean-Claude Juncker.
The “study group for the future” initiated by Germany's Guido Westerwelle, which does not currently include an official French representative, proposes to put an end to the dominance of national government leaders and give greater authority to the European Commission – in particular the European Commission president, who will be elected by universal suffrage and granted the right to form a “governmental team”, making him or her the most powerful politician in Europe.
The group also recommends replacing European councils of ministers and heads of state with a chamber “of states” in the European parliament. National competencies, most notably the management of borders, defence and public spending will be transferred to the federation, “making membership of the euro irreversible.”
Die Presse argues that it is not surprising to see diplomats from countries which have lost all of their influence since the Treaty of Nice, signed in 2001, and even more so since the outbreak of the crisis, make a bid to play a more important role. However, the daily concludes –
A clearly defined democratic system resembling a state would probably not be in accord with the mood of several sections of the population.
But everyone who wants to safeguard the euro, the single market and political stability, while preventing a widening wealth gap between the North and the South and a reinforcement of nationalist trends will ultimately accept that it is the best way forward.
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President Vladimir Putin expressed his reservations over the prospect of a military strike in Iran, urging Israel Monday to learn from negative US experience in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Putin's comments were made in a meeting with Shimon Peres in Jerusalem, after Israel's president asked the visiting leader to speak out on the Iran issue.
Russia looks to Israel for water technology
"Look at what happened to the Americans in Afghanistan and in Iraq. I told Obama the same thing," the visiting president said in a meeting with his Israeli counterpart, cautioning against hasty military action. "There is no need to do things too quickly; one should not act without thinking first."
"Iraq has a pro-Iranian regime after everything that has happened there. These things should be thought out ahead of time before doing something one will regret later," he said. "One should not act prematurely."
'Russia wants peace for Israel'
Earlier in the evening, Putin said that his country "has a national interest in guaranteeing peace and tranquility for Israel."
The Russian president noted that the former Soviet Union supported the State of Israel's establishment, adding that his talks earlier Monday with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu were constructive and pertained to the need to boost strategic ties between the two countries.
Speaking at a state dinner held for his Russian counterpart, Peres expressed his hope that Putin would contribute to the achievement of peace in the region, making note of his "warm attitude" towards the Jewish state.
Peres added that "the Iranian people are not our enemy. Israel does threaten their existence. It is Iran's current regime that indentifies itself as an enemy of Israel and a threat to its existence."
BIbi: Israel, Russia agree on Iran
Israel and Russia agree that Iranian nuclear weapons would constitute grave danger for the Jewish state and for the whole world, PM Netanyahu said earlier Monday following his meeting with Putin.
"I believe that we should be doing two things now: Boosting the sanctions (on Iran) and also boosting the demands," Netanyahu said.
The Russian president said the two leaders "spoke in detail about the Syria issue and about the Iranian nuclear program."
"I would like to stress again that the negotiations were detailed and very effective," he said. "I'm convinced that the cooperation between Russia and Israel will develop later as well, and this matter certainly meets the demands and interests of both states, in the region and in the world at large."
Speaking to the media after meeting PM Netanyahu, Putin thanked Israel's leadership for inviting him to visit.
"My visit here reinforced the assumption that we have friendly relations, and these are not just friendly relations," Putin said. "This is a solid basis for building dialogue and partnership."
Earlier Monday, President Peres greeted Putin in a dedication ceremony for a memorial to the Red Army’s victory over Nazi Germany in Netanya. Peres said he is certain that Russia, which fought fascism, will not tolerate similar threats, "not an Iranian threat and not bloodshed in Syria."
Signal to Egypt
During Monday's press conference, Netanyahu also addressed regional realities, referring to the Islamist victory in Egypt's presidential elections.
The PM said that Israel "appreciates the democratic process in Egypt" and respects the Egyptian election results.
"We look forward to working together with the new administration on the basis of the peace agreement between us," Netanyahu said. "I believe peace is important for Israel. I believe peace is important for Egypt."
Meanwhile, President Putin addressed the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, asserting that "against the backdrop of events in the Middle East, it is important to resolve longtime conflicts."
"We urge all sides to renew negotiations; this is the only way to resolve the problem," the Russian president said.
Story taken from
Last year, a Hollywood documentary wondered if Jesus Christ was a communist. This year, a totally separate film is slated to claim that the Son of Man was born after a Roman soldier raped his mother. The movie, which will be based on Paul Verhoeven’s controversial book, “Jesus of Nazareth,” is set to begin filming in the near future.
According to the blog Wizbang, Verhoeven’s 2008 book was filled with some controversial claims. Aside from dismissing Christ’s many Biblical miracles, it charged that Mary’s pregnancy was anything but immaculate and that it resulted from non-consensual sex with a Roman centurion.
This, of course, would mean that Jesus wasn’t (and isn’t) the son of God, as stated in Christian tradition. The author also claims that Christ was never betrayed by Judas Iscariot.
“As for Verhoeven’s book, the adaptation will depict Jesus in a more human light, hence the reason the miracles and the resurrection are being stripped from the story,” IndieWire reported.
“Instead, Jesus will be portrayed as an ethicist and a radical prophet, whose message became too politically strong for the Romans to idly accept and endure. While that version may not seem blasphemous to Verhoeven, it more than likely is for many.”
Here’s an official description of Verhoeven’s “Jesus of Nazareth” that has caused so much controversy:
Building on the work of the great Biblical scholars of the twentieth century—Rudolf Bultman, Raymond Brown, Jane Schabert and Robert Funk, founder of the Jesus Seminars, among others—filmmaker Paul Verhoeven disrobes the mythical Jesus to reveal a man who is, after all, startlingly familiar to us, a man who has much in common with other great political leaders throughout history, human beings who believed that change was coming in their lifetimes.
Gone is the Jesus of the miracles, gone the son of God, gone the weaver of arcane parables whose meanings are obscure. In their place Verhoeven gives us his vision of Jesus as a complete man, someone who was changed by events, the leader of a political movement, and, perhaps most importantly, someone who, in his speeches and sayings, introduced a new ethics in which enlightened behavior and the embrace of human contradictions transcend the mechanics of value and worth that had defined the material world before Jesus.
Coming to a deeper understanding of the historical Jesus has been a lifelong passion for Verhoeven, who for the last quarter-century has been among the very few nonacademics participating in the Jesus Seminars. Verhoeven assumed that one day he would make a film of the life of Jesus.
Then he realized that it must be a book. Steeped in Biblical scholarship but free of the institutional biases, whether academic or religious, that so often dictate the terms of discussion of the historical Jesus, Jesus of Nazareth is a book that builds a bridge reaching all the way back to Jesus’s lifetime, all the way forward to the present, and from biblical scholars to lay readers whose interest might be personal or political.
Obviously, the film will offer no shortage of controversy once it gets underway. While Verhoeven‘s ideas run contrary to most Christians’ views, he has publicly proclaimed his “passion for Jesus” in past interviews and he has demonstrated a deep interest in trying to better understand the religious figure.
“It’s not about miracles, it’s about a new set of ethics, an openness towards the world, which was anathema in a Roman-dominated world,” the author and director told Deadline’s Mike Fleming last year. “I believe he was crucified because they felt that politically, he was a dangerous person whose following was getting bigger and bigger.”
Verhoeven’s past films include “Showgirls” and “RoboCop.”
Saturday, June 23, 2012
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Today, the Obama administration leaker, who has been distributing information about American and Israeli security for weeks, struck again. This time, the leaker went to the Washington Post, prompting the Post to run a piece crediting Israel and the United States with developing the computer virus that screwed up Iran’s nuclear facilities.
This is the latest in a long line of leaks, most of them credited to anonymous Defense Department officials; this one was credited, more discreetly, to “Western officials with knowledge of the effort.”
The fact that the Defense Department has been the source of many of the leaks – leaks including information about Israel’s timing regarding a possible attack on Iran, cooperation between Israel and Saudi Arabia for such a strike, and Azerbaijan allowing Israel access to their airbases for such purposes.
There has been widespread speculation about the source of the leaks. Some have suggested that Tom Donilon, President Obama’s National Security Advisor, is the source; today, others suggest that it is Defense Secretary Leon Panetta.
What nobody doubts, however, is that this is purposeful Obama administration policy. All of the leaks are geared toward one purpose and one purpose only: helping the Obama administration undercut Israel’s ability to attack Iran.
But right now, it is only Israel’s ability to attack Iran that keeps the region in stasis. Today, the Russians, Chinese, Syrians and Iranians participated in joint military exercises involving nearly 100,000 troops; meanwhile, the new Muslim Brotherhood-run Egyptian regime is facilitating terror attacks along Israel’s southern border. The big question now is what further leaks could do to trigger a regional meltdown.
Imagine, for example, what would happen if the Obama administration leaked information about Israeli plans to take military action against Egypt in pre-emptive self-defense. Is there any doubt that terror would escalate, or that Syria and Iran would join with Egypt in a proxy action against Israel utilizing Hamas and Hezbollah?
This is now a more and more significant possibility. Israel faces threats on every border: from the Palestinians in the East to the Syrians and Lebanese in the North to the Egyptians in the South. Even far-flung enemies like Turkey and Iran are mobilizing. And every time Israel seeks to do something to protect herself, the United States leaks crucial information.
What’s worse, the Obama administration leaks create a ticking time bomb scenario for Israel. If Obama is leaking information now, what will he do if he’s re-elected? At least prior to November, Obama will have to answer to the American people. But once he’s re-elected, as he informed Dmitri Medvedev, he’s ready to do whatever American opponents like Russia (now a Syrian-Iranian ally) want. What is Israel to do but attack Iran while they still can? Or Egypt?
Obama’s leaking is heightening the risk of a regional war dramatically. The fact that the leaks serve the purposes of the administration is beyond serious doubt. The question is whether they serve the interests of the United States or her allies.
Story taken from
GAZA (Reuters) - Israel launched air raids on Hamas security targets in Gaza on Saturday, wounding more than 20 people, medical officials in the Islamist-ruled territory said, as militants stepped up rocket fire, wounding an Israeli man.
The escalating violence threatened to unravel Wednesday's shaky Egyptian-brokered truce, which had temporarily calmed violence that erupted on Monday after a raid across Egypt's Sinai border in which an Israeli man and two gunmen were killed.
Hamas medical officials said a six-year-old Palestinian boy had been killed in an air strike but Israel's military denied any involvement.
Israel confirmed its aircraft had struck two militant targets in the Islamist-ruled territory.
Hamas medical officials said a third Israeli air raid had killed the six-year-old boy at a soccer field near the town of Khan Younis, and wounded two other people. They said a baby was wounded in a separate attack in Rafah, at the Egypt border.
Lieutenant Colonel Avital Leibovich, an Israeli military spokeswoman, denied any Israeli involvement in the boy's death, saying on Twitter that the report was the result of "false rumors" and that the boy had died due to an explosion of ordnance belonging to Palestinian militants.
Another Israeli military spokeswoman said she had no report of any air strikes in Rafah, where the baby was reported to have been hurt.
The Israeli strikes were reported after the worst rocket assault in six days of fighting. One projectile slammed into the Israeli town of Sderot wounding an Israeli man in the neck just as he was trying to enter a concrete shelter.
The rocket was one of more than 150 fired into Israel in the past week, the military said, after a relatively calm period. At least 15 were fired at Israel on Saturday, nearly three times as a day ago.
At least six other rockets were intercepted by an Israeli missile defense system, the military said.
Israel's military chiefs scheduled urgent consultations to weigh a "course of action," a military spokeswoman said. Israeli authorities also urged many of the 1 million Israelis who live in the south to stay indoors or close to fortified shelters.
Officials in Gaza said Israel had attacked security targets in Gaza City and in northern and southern parts of the crowded coastal strip before dawn.
Nobody in Gaza claimed responsibility for the rocket fire at Israel, but a security source said the missiles had been launched by members of a fringe Salafi group sympathetic to al-Qaeda, two of whose militants were killed in Israeli raids on Friday.
Israel blamed the Salafis for Monday's cross-border raid from Egypt, after which Israel launched punitive air raids on nearby Gaza, killing 10 Palestinians, many of them militants but also including a 14-year-old boy.
Hamas militants had conditionally pledged to adhere to the truce brokered by Egypt if Israel also held fire. Israel never formally commented on the deal but its officials have pledged to respond to any rocket fire from Gaza.
Egypt has brokered such deals in the past and stepped in this time fearing the violence, which coincided with a hotly contested presidential race in Cairo, could spiral out of control.
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“Italy’s prime minister, Mario Monti, has warned of the apocalyptic consequences of failure at next week’s summit of EU leaders, outlining a potential death spiral that could threaten the political and economic future of Europe,” reports the UK Guardian.
“The Italian leader is to hold talks with Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany, the French president, François Hollande, and Spain’s prime minister, Mariano Rajoy, in the hope that the single currency’s big four countries can pave the way for a breakthrough at next week’s meeting. Speaking to the Guardian and a group of leading European newspapers, Monti said that, without a successful outcome at the summit, ‘there would be progressively greater speculative attacks on individual countries, with harassment of the weaker countries.’
The attacks would be focused not only on those who had failed to respect EU guidelines, but also on those like Italy, which he said had abided by the rules ‘but which carry with them from the past a high debt.’ Monti warned: ‘A large part of Europe would find itself having to continue to put up with very high interest rates that would then impact on the states and also indirectly on firms. This is the direct opposite of what is needed for economic growth.’ Outlining the result of a failure at the talks, Monti said that, faced with creeping economic paralysis, ‘the frustration of the public towards Europe would grow,’ creating a vicious circle.”
Friday, June 22, 2012
- We must ask ourselves more to the point is America simply undergoing an economic crisis or can we see the hand of God in judgment being extended in this hour. The quest for an answer to this question drove me to my knees. After several days of both intense prayer and the study of the scriptures the Lord dealt with my heart that I would find my answer in how he judged other nations in the past. He took me in my search to the past and revealed to my heart that I would find an amazing parallel in the judgments that he brought on the nation of Egypt in the time of Moses and what is happening in our nation today.
Egypt in its rebellion refused to acknowledge the word of God as given to them by Moses. . In the third plague God brought a plague of lice.
So the LORD said to Moses, “Tell Aaron, ‘Raise your staff and strike the ground. The dust will turn into swarms of gnats throughout the land of Egypt.’” 17 So Moses and Aaron did just as the LORD had commanded them. When Aaron raised his hand and struck the ground with his staff, gnats infested the entire land, covering the Egyptians and their animals. All the dust in the land of Egypt turned into gnats. (Exodus 8:16-17 NLT)
- The people of Egypt were consumed with lice in their homes, animals, everything and everywhere. The Lord showed me that a people who turn their backs on God become consumed with an unsurrendered ambition. A vision an inner craving, a lust for power and influence that can never be scratched or quenched. : A people who are suffering this judgment will be consumed with a spirit of compromise. Anything goes as long as my personal fortune, influence, and power are increased.
America has become a nation, which has rejected the creed of morality as taught in the word of God. Instead we worship the gods of greed, avarice, and power. In fact much of the economic chaos that has been unleashed in America has come because of the lack of moral values demonstrated in the nation today.
These plagues brought by God on Egypt build upon one another and the fourth plague logically follows the third. God brought a plague of flies into the land.
If you refuse, then I will send swarms of flies on you, your officials, your people, and all the houses. The Egyptian homes will be filled with flies, and the ground will be covered with them. 22 But this time I will spare the region of Goshen, where my people live. No flies will be found there. Then you will know that I am the LORD and that I am present even in the heart of your land. (Exodus 8 21-22 NLT)
: Flies are unclean and they swarm around the head. The nation that forgets God like flies surrounding the head shall be plagued with voices, opinions, and accusations. They will be consumed with worry and fear both night and day over things of which most of them have no control. Try as they might they will be unable to escape this torment of accusation swirling around their head. Yet note in this plague God made a point of distinction between his people Israel and Egypt in that he did not bring this plague on Israel. The Godly are surrounded by the same discouraging news and reports that everyone else faces with one major difference. They walk and live their lives in the presence of God and no matter what are filled with the peace of God. They will not be consumed with fear but instead their hopes are founded on the bedrock conviction founded on their personal relationship with God.
Story taken from
The Washingon Tribune
The United States has been tracking Iranian sales of
unmanned aerial vehicles to Venezuela.
Officials said Iran regards Venezuela as a key ally in South America.
They said thousands of Iranian advisers, including members of the Islamic
Revolutionary Guard Corps, have been working to bolster the military and security forces
of the South American state.
What is believed to be an Iranian drone at Venezuela's El Libertador Air Base. /Omar Quintero
The State Department has confirmed that Iran was delivering UAVs to Venezuela. Officials said the UAVs were not armed with weapons and could not threaten South America. “Our understanding is that these UAVs would not be equipped with weapons but are more sort of camera surveillance type things, flying cameras if you will,” State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said.
In a briefing on June 19, Ms. Nuland said Venezuela was violating United Nations sanctions on Iran. She said Washington was monitoring Iranian relations with Caracas and would respond.
“All countries, including Venezuela, have an obligation to comply with international sanctions against Iran, so we will continue to monitor this situation between Iran and countries in the hemisphere closely,” Ms. Nuland said.
In June, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad conducted his second tour
of South America in six months. Ahmadinejad’s itinerary included Bolivia,
Brazil and Venezuela in what officials said was meant to demonstrate
Teheran’s foreign relations amid sanctions.
The UAV delivered to Venezuela was identified as the Harpy-1, said to be
a variant of the Muhajer-2. Officials said Venezuela was overseeing local
production and assembly of the UAVs as well as bases to host the Shihab-3
intermediate-range ballistic missile.
“Iran is continuing to look for friends wherever it can find them, and
what we are saying to all of our partners in the hemisphere is that this is
an opportunity, when Ahmadinejad comes knocking,
to underscore the unity of the international community in not wanting to see
Iran get a nuclear weapon,” Ms. Nuland said. “With regard to Venezuela, –
we will see how that goes.”
Rocket Launched from Iron Dome Anti-Missile System
Story taken from
Two rockets fired from Gaza into Israel; Iron Dome intercepts one
Another missile explodes in open area in Eshkol Regional Council; rocket fire marks first projectiles since early Thursday morning.
The Iron Dome anti-missile defense system on Thursday intercepted a rocket fired from Gaza toward Ashkelon.
A second rocket was fired on Thursday, which exploded in an open area in Eshkol Regional Council. No casualties or damage was reported.
Despite the rockets, the Home Front Command announced that Israeli communities near the Gaza border will return to normal operations, with classes taking place on Friday.
During most of the day on Thursday, a relative calm was restored to the Israel-Gaza border.
Gaza militants fired seven rockets at the western Negev overnight Wednesday, including five on Thursday morning. This was despite reported Hamas attempts to end a recent violent escalation along the Strip's border with Israel.
The rockets fired in the later morning hours targeted the Eshkol Regional Council, with all of them landing in open fields and without causing casualties or damages.
Overnight, one Qassam rocket hit an open field near Ashkelon, with another launched at the southern city intercepted by an Iron Dome anti-missile battery.
Classes were canceled in Ashkelon on Thursday in light of the security situation.
On Wednesday, Hamas militants announced they were ready to stop the latest round of cross-border violence as long as Israel followed suit, in a statement issued after Israeli air strikes killed two Palestinians in the Gaza Strip in a third day of fighting.
Around 70 rockets and mortars were fired into Israel from Gaza since Wednesday morning. Around 120 were fired since the start of the week.
By Zahra Hosseinian
Iran has detected a planned "massive cyber attack" against its nuclear facilities, state television said on Thursday, after talks with major powers this week failed to resolve a row over Tehran's disputed nuclear activities.
Iran's Intelligence Minister Heydar Moslehi said the country's arch enemies the United States and Israel, along with Britain, had planned the attack.
"Based on obtained information, America and the Zionist regime (Israel) along with the MI6 planned an operation to launch a massive cyber attack against Iran's facilities following the meeting between Iran and the P5+1 in Moscow," Iran's English-language Press TV quoted him as saying.
"They still seek to carry out the plan, but we have taken necessary measures," he added, without elaborating.
Security experts said last month a highly sophisticated computer virus, dubbed "Flame", had infected computers in Iran and other Middle Eastern countries.
Iranian officials were quick to say the country had defeated the virus, capable of snatching data and eavesdropping on computer users. It was not clear if the cyber attack referred to by Moslehi was "Flame", or a new virus.
Iran's nuclear program came under attack in 2010 by the Stuxnet computer worm which caused centrifuges to fail at the main Iranian enrichment facility. Tehran accused the United States and Israel of deploying Stuxnet.
.Iran has been locked in a row for nearly a decade with Western countries over its disputed nuclear program which the West believes is aimed at making nuclear weapons.
Tehran denies the charge, saying it only wants peaceful nuclear technology to generate.
Earlier this month current and former U.S. officials said the United States under former President George W. Bush began building Stuxnet to try to prevent Tehran from completing suspected nuclear weapons work without resorting to risky military strikes against Iranian facilities.
They said President Barack Obama accelerated the efforts after succeeding Bush in 2009.
..World powers and Iran failed to secure a breakthrough at talks on Tehran's nuclear program in Moscow on Tuesday, despite the threat of a new Middle East conflict if diplomacy collapses.
After two days of talks, European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said significant differences remained and the two sides had agreed only on a technical follow-up meeting in Istanbul on July 3.
Tehran has repeatedly said that as a member of the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), it can develop a full nuclear fuel cycle, and, if this is recognized, talks with the permanent members of the U.N. Security Council — Britain, France, Russia, China, the United States — and Germany (the P5+1) can succeed.
"If the other side agrees to recognize Iran's (nuclear) rights based on international regulations, Iran is ready to negotiate anything," Ali Akbar Velayati, an adviser to Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei was quoted as saying by the official IRNA news agency on Thursday.
Thursday, June 21, 2012
As we move into a new decade America and the world are faced with the most challenging decisions in our history. Some time ago I began to seek the face of God for an answer to a question. How can we know when God begins to bring judgment on a nation? I felt that the Lord had laid it on my heart that an examination of how he brought judgments on nations before, would give me the insight that I was looking for. Specifically I felt led to examine the judgment he brought on the nation of Egypt during the time of the exodus, and there I would find my answer.
Let there be no misunderstanding the heart of God is one of love and compassion. God is slow to wrath and is loath to bring judgment on either an individual or a nation. Yet there comes a time in a nations life when through willful transgression of his laws and commandments that nations come under the judgment of God. God in ancient Egypt poured out ten plagues on Egypt and a close examination of these plagues will give us a clear understanding of events in our world today.
1 [a]Then the LORD said to Moses, “Go back to Pharaoh and announce to him, ‘This is what the LORD says: Let my people go, so they can worship me. 2 If you refuse to let them go, I will send a plague of frogs across your entire land. 3 The Nile River will swarm with frogs. They will come up out of the river and into your palace, even into your bedroom and onto your bed! They will enter the houses of your officials and your people. They will even jump into your ovens and your kneading bowls. 4 Frogs will jump on you, your people, and all your officials.’” (Exodus 8: 1-4 NLT)
In the second plague God brought on Egypt he caused a great swarm of frogs to cover the land. These frogs completely covered the land of Egypt. There was nowhere anyone could go to escape them. They affected everyone’s home and place of business. Even their bedrooms, kneading bowls, and ovens were covered with them. When a society gives itself over to the pursuit of pleasure it has come under judgment. As we demonstrated in our last devotion sin produces a craving for more sin. It is a never-ending cycle. Sin produces an itch that cannot be scratched. The first plague produced the second.
A plague of frogs speaks of an increase in the power and influence of the demonic within a society. In his Revelation John shows us the correlation of frogs and the demonic.
And I saw three evil[b] spirits that looked like frogs leap from the mouths of the dragon, the beast, and the false prophet. 14 They are demonic spirits who work miracles and go out to all the rulers of the world to gather them for battle against the Lord on that great judgment day of God the Almighty (Revelation 16:13-14 NLT)
These evil spirits that John describes here had the appearance of frogs. When a people turn their back on God a plague of evil is released in the land. A spiritual climate that stands in opposition to God consumes the people and its leadership. Frogs were and are a symbol of not just the demonic but demonic principalities of darkness. As already shown these frogs were everywhere in Egypt and so likewise a nation that turns its back on God will see the rise of the demonic influence cover the land.
We have now seen three things that indicate America is suffering the judgment of God in the land. Our people and our leaders have challenged the Lord, as did Pharaoh of ancient Egypt. We have pursed a course of abandonment to our passions, and thirdly as a result seen an increase in the power of the demonic in the land. Before it is everlastingly to late it is my prayer that our nation shall turn to God in repentance. There is much more to say that shall demonstrate the great peril in which this nation has placed itself.
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The handwritten message Barack Obama scrawled on a new building site at Ground Zero last night sounds optimistic, upbeat, non-controversial – at first glance.
However, the message continues a pattern of American leaders fulfilling an ancient biblical prophecy and a curse of judgment on the U.S., according to the best-selling Christian book of 2012 and the No. 1 faith movie.
While Obama was creating a stir in Manhattan with star-studded celebrity fundraisers, he also took a side trip that got less publicity. His official presidential business was a visit to the new World Trade Center building site where he signed a steel girder with a message of interest to the hundreds of thousands who have read “The Harbinger” or seen the video documentary “The Isaiah 9:10 Judgment.”
“We remember,” he wrote. “We rebuild. We come back stronger!”
The book and the video have shocked readers and viewers around the country and the world by showing the eerie and striking parallels between the vows of the leaders of ancient Israel before its judgment and fall and those of American leaders since Sept. 11, 2001.
“What was foreshadowed in ‘The Harbinger’ and ‘The Isaiah 9:10 Judgment’ film is now being fulfilled by the president of the United States,” said Jonathan Cahn, the messianic rabbi-pastor and author.
The book and film specifically connect Obama’s words from his first State of the Union message in January 2009 with the ancient vow that brought judgment to ancient Israel.
“The ancient vow begins with these words: ‘The bricks have fallen, but we will rebuild with hewn stone,’” explains Cahn. “The vow declares Israel’s defiance of God, in the face of a devastating strike on the land. The hewn stone, which begins the rebuilding, symbolizes the nation’s intention to come back stronger than before. The book then reveals the parallel a proclamation given by Obama:
“Tonight I want every American to know this: We will rebuild. And the United States of America will emerge stronger than before,” he said.
However, that comment, which represented the theme of his first major speech upon taking office, was not addressing the attack of 9/11. It was addressing the economy and the state of the country generally. Yesterday, Cahn points out, Obama returned to the location of the attack – bringing the message full circle.
He points out how Obama’s words even parallel a Bible commentary on the verse Isaiah 9:10: “They boasted that they would rebuild their devastated country and make it stronger than ever before.”
In “The Harbinger” and “The Isaiah 9:10 Judgment,” the focal point of this vow of judgment is the tower rising up out of the ruins of Ground Zero. It comprises the fourth harbinger – and remains the one harbinger that is still under construction.
“On June 14, two of the mysteries of ‘The Harbinger,’ foreshadowed in the book came true,” explained Cahn. “Obama went to Ground Zero to see the still rising tower. He was given a beam which will constitute the tower’s final and highest beam. On the beam, the president wrote eight words – which were, in effect, a summation of the ancient vow of judgment: ‘We Remember, We Rebuild, We Come Back Stronger!’”
Cahn continued: “So now the now the tower will be crowned and finished with words paralleling Isaiah 9:10, the ancient vow of national judgment. The tower was begun with the laying down of a hewn stone, the very same object mentioned in Isaiah 9:10 which begins the rebuilding.”
“Now the words and the tower have been joined together in reality – and the one who did it was the president of the United States,” he told WND. “One subtle difference in the words, is that the vow is spoken in the future tense. But now the words inscribed on the towers are in the present tense. In other words, they not only speak of the defiant vow, but of the fact that the vow is being fulfilled. This,” says Cahn, “constitutes another ominous sign.”
The last time the tower at Ground Zero became the focus of media attention was April 30, 2012, the day it became the tallest building in New York City. In the chapter titled The Mystery Ground, “The Harbinger” provides the reader with a date that holds the key to the mystery behind Ground Zero – the same date – April 30.
In January, “The Harbinger,” by Cahn, a messianic rabbi from New Jersey, exploded onto the publishing scene, immediately becoming a surprise New York Times bestseller.
“A number of years ago, as I was standing at the edge of Ground Zero in New York City, I came across the first puzzle piece of an ancient biblical mystery and a prophetic message known as ‘The Harbinger’ that concerns the future of America,” explains Cahn, who helped write the two-hour documentary “The Isaiah 9:10 Judgment.”
Cahn say he has since found nine harbingers that tie the problems America has experienced beginning Sept. 11, 2001, with parallels that led to the destruction of ancient Israel.
“Before God judges a nation, He sends warning,” explains Cahn. “He sent warning to ancient Israel. He even allowed its enemies to breach its borders in a devastating strike that would traumatize the nation. It was a wake-up call, the call to return to God. But the nation responded with defiance. God then gave nine harbingers of judgment, nine prophetic signs, alarms and foreshadows of what was to come. Now America is the nation in rapid departure from God’s will. And God likewise allowed an enemy to breach its borders in a devastating strike – the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. It was, likewise, a wake-up call. But America, like Israel, has not responded with repentance, but with defiance. And now the nine harbingers of judgment have reappeared and have done so on American soil.”
Isaiah 9:10 is a verse in which Israel’s national leaders utter a vow of defiance following an attack by Assyria. It declared that the nation would not repent before God, but would defy Him instead. Cahn reveals in “The Harbinger” – and in even more dramatic fashion in the video – that beginning the day after Sept. 11, 2001, American leaders began repeating that 2,500-year-old vow, word for word.
He continues: “According to the ancient mystery revealed in the Book of Isaiah, if after that first calamity and warning, the nation doesn’t return to God but responds in defiance, it will end up triggering a second calamity. It was because of this ancient key, that, seven years after 9/11, the American economy collapsed. In the days after 9/11, the Federal Reserve slashed the base interest rate in an attempt to defy the consequences of the attacks. That action put us on the path leading to the collapse of the American economy seven years later. In 2008, the government made a second fatal mistake, another ill-fated financial decision, that would trigger the collapse of the American economy. Amazingly, it took place on the seventh anniversary of the uttering of the ancient vow on Capitol Hill.”
Cahn also reveals in “The Harbinger” and “The Isaiah 9:10 Judgment” something that readers and viewers universally find astonishing – that New York’s Ground Zero actually represents more than the former financial center of the country. It represents the exact place at which America was first consecrated to God in prayer by the country’s new leaders.
“When judgment came to Israel, the calamity returned the people’s attention to the place where the nation had been consecrated to God – the Temple Mount,” says Cahn. “God was calling the nation back to Himself. What about 9/11? Could there be, in the American calamity, as well, a mystery of return? Could there be a prophetic message hidden in the place where it happened? There is a place where America was consecrated to God in prayer. It is also a place linked to a prophetic warning given on that same day – uttered by the nation’s first president – now coming to pass.”
In 1789, newly inaugurated President George Washington gave a prophetic warning at Federal Hall in New York City. He declared that America’s prosperity and protection were dependent upon its adherence to God. Later, the political leaders of the young nation gathered at St. Paul’s Chapel to commit the nation’s future to God’s purposes. That chapel is located at Ground Zero and miraculously survived 9/11 virtually unscathed.
Cahn, the pastor of the Jerusalem Center-Beth Israel Congregation in Wayne, N.J., says America is uncannily re-enacting ancient Israel’s behavior prior to its judgment and eventual fall. He found a sympathetic ear for his message in WND founder Joseph Farah, who produced “The Isaiah 9:10 Judgment,” as a follow-up to “The Harbinger.”
“I had a chance to hear Jonathan Cahn’s message last fall,” said Farah. “Then I had an opportunity to read an early manuscript of ‘The Harbinger’ before it was released in January. I was determined to produce this video documentary, ‘The Isaiah 9:10 Judgment,’ because I believe its message is the most important one for Americans at this moment in history. In fact, I believe this project may be the most important one of my life. That’s how strongly I feel about it.”
The key to decoding the harbingers, Cahn says, is found in understanding the seemingly innocuous words of Isaiah 9:10 (King James Version) what it meant to Israel and how the history seems to be repeating itself in America today: “The bricks are fallen down, but we will build with hewn stones: The sycamores are cut down, but we will change them into cedars.”
These words were first uttered by leaders in Israel and in response to a limited strike by Assyria on the lands of Zebulun and Naphtali – an attack the prophet makes clear is actually part of a limited judgment by God against apostasy. It wasn’t meant to destroy the nation, but to awaken it, according to most commentaries.
But, says Cahn, Israel didn’t take the cue. Instead, the response from the people in Isaiah 9:10 is one of defiance. The brick buildings were toppled, but they vowed to build bigger and better. The little sycamore trees may have been uprooted, but they vowed to plant bigger and better cedars in their place.
God, speaking through Isaiah explains what will happen as a result of their pride and arrogance and failure to heed the harbinger: Bigger and more potent attacks will follow. Because neither the northern kingdom of Israel nor the southern kingdom of Judah truly repents, the first is eventually swept away by Assyrian invaders and the latter is carried off into captivity by the Babylonians for 70 years.
But what does this have to do with the United States of America – particularly what the U.S. experienced on 9/11 and since? Cahn has found some eerie parallels.
“In the aftermath of the attack, the nation was stunned,” said Cahn. “Everyone was trying to make sense of what had happened – this unprecedented attack on America. The very next day, Sept. 12, then Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle presented America’s response to the world. And what did he say?”
Daschle said: “America will emerge from this tragedy as we have emerged from all adversity – united and strong. Nothing … nothing can replace the losses of those who have suffered. I know there is only the smallest measure of inspiration that can be taken from this devastation. But there is a passage in the Bible from Isaiah that speaks to all of us at times like this.”
He then went on to read Isaiah 9:10.
“Daschle has no idea what he is doing here,” explains Cahn. “He thinks he’s offering comforting words to a grief-stricken people, but he is actually embracing the spiritually defiant and arrogant words of the children of Israel, proclaiming the ancient and ominous vow of the leaders of that nation. He doesn’t realize it, but he is actually inviting more judgment on the nation.”
It might be of some significance that Daschle, one of the most powerful men in the nation when he spoke those words, later fell into disgrace – to the point where he couldn’t even serve in Barack Obama’s Cabinet.
That might have been the end of the story – if no other top leader in the nation uttered those strange and obscure words after 9/11. But that’s not the case.
On the third anniversary of the attack, Sept. 11, 2004, another powerful U.S. senator running for vice president that year and who would famously run for the presidency four years later, gave a speech to the Congressional Black Caucus.
This time, John Edwards’ entire speech was built on a foundation of Isaiah 9:10:
“Today, on this day of remembrance and mourning, we have the Lord’s Word to get us through,” he said. He then read Isaiah 9:10. He went on to talk about how America was doing just that – rebuilding with hewn stone and planting cedars.
In “The Isaiah 9:10 Judgment,” viewers get to see these remarkable, largely forgotten or overlooked speeches, which directly link the events of 9/11 and the events referred to in Isaiah 9:10.
“Like Daschle, Edwards thinks he’s invoking inspirational and comforting words from the Bible, but he’s actually inviting judgment on America,” says Cahn. “He’s repeating the vow that provoked God to bring calamity on ancient Israel.”
Even more astonishing, Daschle and Edwards were not alone among U.S. leaders in making similar statements, as “The Isaiah 9:10 Judgment” shows.
But aside from such statements, which could be chalked up to political talk and coincidences, is there anything else linking Isaiah 9:10 to 9/11?
The video documentary, like the book, is full of shocking parallels. There was actually a very famous sycamore tree felled in the attack on the World Trade Center. It was replaced by trees in the same genus as the cedar. There have been many plans made to rebuild the twin towers bigger and better and a large “hewn stone” was actually quarried out of the Adirondack Mountains in New York and brought to Ground Zero as a cornerstone.
“The parallels are truly stunning,” says Farah, founder of WND, who produced the documentary for WND Videos. “In fact, they are overwhelming in their number and their exactitude. I am persuaded God is trying to tell America something and Rabbi Cahn has found the key to unlocking the message.”
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For the past few weeks, U.S. indications and warnings have picked up Israeli long-range strike practice and refueling, according to a report in Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin.
While they’re occurring with one or two aircraft at a time, sources report that such practice “seems to be a constant now.”
In addition to long-range strike practice runs, sources say there also has been a recall of “key personnel” and further movement of U.S.-supplied anti-ballistic Patriot missiles.
The Israelis also have been doing intelligence collection flights, as well as early warning practice, which has been under way for more than a month.
Such a report comes on the heels of other recent indications and warnings about Israeli war preparations.
Those preparations include arming and fueling Israel’s nuclear-capable Jericho II missiles and the deployment of covert intelligence ships near Iran for intelligence-gathering and surveillance.
In addition, Israel is preparing its own German-supplied electric submarines which are capable of firing a nuclear-tipped cruise missile. Israel has three such submarines and hopes to receive a fourth almost any time.
This suggests that Israel may put greater reliance on “stand-off” warfare when it comes to any military strike against Iran. Such a strategy includes the use of missiles and drones while using almost all military aircraft to protect the immediate home front.
All of this is independent of what possible military assistance that would be forthcoming from the United States. As WND/G2Bulletin previously reported, the U.S. has based stealth F-22 Raptor jet fighters in the United Arab Emirates.
These Raptors could be used to assist Israel in any air strike on selected nuclear sites. Then it would possibly employ B-2 long-range bombers to strike some of those sites.
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Moscow is using the time up until Russian President Vladimir Putin faces US President Barack Obama across the G20 conference table in Los Cabos, Mexico Sunday, June 17 - or in its corridors - to ship sophisticated arms to Syria able to prevent a no-fly zone and a fleet of warships to the Mediterranean port of Tartus.
While Pentagon sources Friday disclosed the approach of a “small contingent” of Russian warships to Tartus, debkafile’s military and intelligence sources have discovered that heading for the Russian base at this Syrian port is a Russian fleet that includes Ropucha-toad or Project 775 class landing-craft carrying Russian marines. Each craft can carry 250 marine personnel and 500-ton armored vehicles.
And flying overhead are Russian air transports that are touching down at Syrian air bases bearing, according to our sources, a variety of sophisticated munitions for the Syrian army: advanced Russian Pantsyr-S1 anti-air missiles capable of hitting fighter-bombers flying at an altitude of 12 kilometers and cruise missiles; self-propelled medium range anti-air Buk-M2 missiles (NATO codenamed SA-11).
They are capable of downing aircraft flying at an altitude of 14 kilometers and Mach 32 speed; and shore-based Bastion anti-ship missiles which can reach vessels sailing 300 kilometers out to sea.
Russia is, in a word, supplying Bashar Assad, his regime and his army, with the very weapons they may need for warding off Western and Arab air efforts to impose a no-fly zone over Syria, while at the same time enabling him to repel seaborne assaults by his foes from the Mediterranean.
Since Syrian units have not been trained in the use of these advanced weapons, they are mostly likely coming with Russian technical teams to operate them - although they would be presented as “instructors.”
The Russians are not trying to conceal their military intervention in Syria in support of the Assad regime.
On, June 16, Anatoly P. Isaykin, director of Rosoboronexport (the Russian state arms export authority) said quite openly: I would like to say these mechanisms are really good means of defense, a reliable defense against attacks from air or sea. This is not a threat, but whoever is planning an attack should think about this.”
The next day, Saturday, a source in the Russian General Staff told the Itar-Tass government news agency, “Several warships of the Russian Black Sea Fleet, including large landing ships with marines aboard, are fully prepared to take to the sea in case it is necessary to protect the Russian logistics base in Tartus, Syria, since it is a zone of the Fleet’s responsibility.”
debkafile’s sources in Washington, Moscow and the Persian Gulf expect the Russian and US presidents to get together in the course of the G20 summit for a meeting that will determine whether or not the US and its European and Arab allies go forward with their planned military intervention in Syria.
Agreement between the two presidents on their Syria and Iran policies could arrest this plan, whereas their failure to agree would quicken its pace.
Wednesday, June 20, 2012
- Four hundred years ago the downtrodden and oppressed from Europe, and other lands, began to make their way to a new land across the sea. They were drawn by the promise of an ideal. This new land held out the promise of a better life, a hope, that over the centuries has crystallized into that which we call the American dream. Now as then America remains a vision of hope and freedom for the oppressed masses huddled in poverty and living lives of oppression in much of the world.
Yet my heart is moved as America moves into a new decade and attempts to meet the challenges of the 21st century. The 20th century was a time of great struggle and turmoil, yet American influence throughout the world was spread far and wide. This dream was fostered by the American ideals of God and country, these ideals fostered an innate goodness within the hearts of Americans and the rest of the world were the benefactors.
Yet as America moves forward we have seen a drastic shift and change in the moral values and ideals, which were the twin bulwarks upon which the greatness of this nation has stood. The world is a much more dangerous place today than it has ever been. As I examined the challenges we as a people face today, it drove me to my closet in prayer and supplication.
I was burdened in my heart as I with diligence in prayer and through a search of the scriptures sought the answer to one question. When does God bring judgment on a nation?
Long ago God brought his people out of slavery in Egypt. As recorded in the book of Exodus he brought ten plagues upon Egypt and thus humbled the mightiest nation on earth at that time. I believe we can learn much about not only when God judges a nation, but also when this judgment may be expected to occur. I believe the lessons we can learn from these times, will prove beyond all doubt, that America as a nation is at the present time already come under the judgment of God.
Pharaoh and his people hardened their hearts against the will of God. It was at that time that God chose a simple shepherd to not only be his mouthpiece in Egypt, but by his staff he became the rod of judgment in the land. Moses under the guiding hand of the lord God went once more to Pharaoh with a solemn warning.
So this is what the LORD says: “I will show you that I am the LORD.” Look! I will strike the water of the Nile with this staff in my hand, and the river will turn to blood. (Exodus 7:17)
The Lord turned the waters of the Nile into blood. The people of Egypt became consumed with a great thirst that nothing could satisfy. When a nation abandons the principles of morality and dignity as laid out in the scriptures, they lay down the standard of right and wrong. Every man does what is right in his own eyes. One of the signs that a nation is suffering the judgment of the almighty is when its people become consumed with pleasure. The walls of constraint are pulled down, and the people of that land give themselves over to the unbridled lust in all its forms, that the human heart can conceive.
Yet the pleasure of sin is fleeting and the sting it leaves in its wake is it creates a hunger or thirst, which cannot be satisfied. Millions of Americans having abandoned the God given laws and precepts of our creator instead find themselves lost in the grip of unbridled passion in all its forms. This is not a force of liberation but rather a curse. A heart driven by passion is a slave to itself, and a nation driven by passion is suffering the judgment of God.
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At a time of skyrocketing federal debt, declining morality and growing spiritual apathy and apostasy, New York Times bestselling author Joel C. Rosenberg – known as a “modern-day Nostradamus” – says America may face cataclysmic collapse in the not-too distant future.
In his new book, Implosion: Can America Recover from its Economic & Spiritual Challenges in Time? (Tyndale House Publishers), Rosenberg explores the question a growing number of politicians, academics, authors and others are asking about the future of the United States.
“My concern is we are experiencing an epic failure of leadership at almost every level of American society right now,” Rosenberg told WND. “Something has gone terribly wrong with the American experiment. Our families are imploding, our national debt is exploding, experts on the left and right are warning us that we need to change our direction because we’re on an unsustainable trajectory economically, socially and culturally.
“Unfortunately, too many leaders in our country are stuck in business as usual mode and Americans are getting anxious that the ice is cracking under our feet.”
The book, released this week, comes as people at nearly 300 locations nationwide are set to listen to Rosenberg on Saturday morning discuss whether America is headed for implosion or revival during a live, three-hour “Implosion Simulcast” from First Baptist Church in Houston, Texas. Details have been posted at JoelRosenberg.com.
Rosenberg is a bestselling author with more than 2.5 million copies of his books in print. One of his books – “The Last Jihad’ – put readers in the cockpit of a hijacked jet on a kamikaze mission into an American city. It was written nine months before the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. Afterwards, U.S. News & World Report described him as a “modern-day Nostradamus.” He also wrote about the U.S. at war in Iraq four months before the war began.
See for yourself exactly what could happen to the United States of America, in “Implosion: Can America Recover from its Economic and Spiritual Challenges in Time?”
The son of a Jewish father and a Gentile mother and an evangelical Christian, Rosenberg has served as a communications adviser for a number of U.S. and Israeli leaders, including Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Forbes magazine Publisher Steve Forbes.
A front-page Sunday New York Times profile called him a “force in the capital.” He has been profiled by the Washington Times and the Jerusalem Post, has been interviewed on ABC, CNN, FOX, MSNBC and the History Channel, and has addressed audiences all over the world, including the White House, the Pentagon, the U.S. Capitol and the European Union Parliament.
Earlier this week, Rosenberg received a note from Anne Graham Lotz, daughter of evangelist Billy Graham and author of “Expecting to See Jesus,” regarding his new book.
“Reinforced with Joel Rosenberg’s brilliant research, delivered with a prophet’s authority, and wrapped in hope, ‘Implosion’ will keep you riveted page after page. It is a clarion call to wake-up, America, before it’s too late!” Graham Lotz wrote.
In the book, Rosenberg explores whether the United States – long the wealthiest, most powerful nation in history – is an empire in decline or a nation poised for a historic renaissance. The book asks whether America’s religious past can be repeated today with a Third Great Awakening, or whether the rise of China, Russia and other nations, coupled with America’s internal struggles, will plunge the country into terminal decline.
The book comes as the nation faces soaring federal debt, severe economic turmoil, political uncertainty, declining morality, a weak church, growing spiritual apathy and apostasy, a spate of historic natural disasters and many other daunting challenges.
Many Americans have come to believe that the U.S. has entered a period of severe and potentially irreversible decline and fear the nation is in serious risk of economic and social collapse, Rosenberg wrote.
In the book, he cites several startling polls. A 2008 NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll found 73 percent of Americans believe the U.S. is in a state of decline. A 2010 Fox News Poll found nearly 80 percent of Americans believe the U.S. economy could collapse entirely. And a 2011 CNN poll found nearly half of all Americans fear the U.S. is heading for another Great Depression.
In “Implosion,” Rosenberg outlines the reasons why the U.S. faces a real and growing risk of collapse.
Economically, the nation is more than $15 trillion in debt and is fast approaching $65 trillion worth of unfunded liabilities – promises the government has made regarding Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid that it can’t afford, Rosenberg says.
Econonically, America has lost 53 million children to abortion since 1973.
“That’s horrific in its own right – murder in my view,” Rosenberg says. “But on top of that, as if that weren’t bad enough, it’s having an economic affect that liberals didn’t intend, which is if you build a social welfare system in which young people pay the bills of older people through taxes and then you kill 53 million younger workers you are going to have a crisis.”
Meanwhile, the nation’s ‘horrible pornography industry,” which exports its lurid materials worldwide, earns more money than NBC, ABC and CBS combined, Rosenberg says.
Morally and spiritually, marriages and families are imploding as the foreclosure and economic crises exact unexpected consequences, Rosenberg says. A Federal Reserve report released earlier this week found the median wealth of families dropped 39 percent from $126,400 in 2007 to $77,300 in 2010.
“You can feel that, but the idea of an economic collapse is hard for people to grasp,” Rosenberg says. “They say, ‘Well, we’re not really Greece.’ But in terms of our families, we see that. We can see the family imploding. The question is this: Is there a point at which we hit a tipping point and all of this economic, cultural and moral trouble sends us into a death spiral we can’t get out of.
“The question, in a broader sense, is there a point at which God can no longer show us grace and mercy as a country, but will remove his hand of favor or actually set in motion judgment.”
In the book, Rosenberg chronicles a growing national discussion of whether American society could implode.
In 2010 during an interview with former U.S. Sen. Judd Gregg, R-N.H. – onetime chairman of the Senate Budget Committee – Fox News host Greta Van Susteren raised the possibility that the economy could “implode.”
“That’s right,” Gregg told Van Susteren. “That’s exactly what’s going to happen.”
In the book, Rosenberg cites other examples of highly respected officials warning the nation is on a path of “implosion” unless dramatic, historic steps are taken to change course.
In a Nov. 17, 2010 Yahoo News story entitled “Rubin Warns of Bond Market ‘Implosion,’” Robert Rubin, U.S. treasury secretary during the Clinton administration and now co-chairman of the Council on Foreign Relations, said the soaring deficit and the Federal Reserve’s quantitative easing (the printing and pumping of money into the economy) was putting the nation in “terribly dangerous territory.”
Not long after this, U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., chairman of the House Budget Committee, told members of Congress the nation is on an unsustainable path where its debt is expected to rise from 68 percent of Gross Domestic Product to 800 percent of GDP in the coming decades.
Last week, Ryan said witnesses at a Congressional Budget Office hearing testified the nation has two years “before we have a debt crisis like Europe is experiencing.”
Rosenberg also examines in the book what the Bible has to say about the future of America and whether the U.S. is ever mentioned directly or indirectly.
The short version, Rosenberg says, is America is not specifically mentioned in the Bible. While many Bible prophecy teachers have speculated America is Babylon – the “great harlot that sitteth upon many waters” that is destroyed in an hour, according to the Book of Revelation – Rosenberg says he believes that is actually a reference to the historical city of Babylon in modern-day Iraq, a city that is being rebuilt.
When he tells people that America is not mentioned in the Bible, Rosenberg says many are often stunned, asking how could the wealthiest and most powerful nation in the history of mankind not be a specifically defined-player in the “last days.”
“The answer to that is I don’t know,” Rosenberg says. “But by the absence of us not being clearly defined in the text means something has happened to us. The question is what. What will happen to us to neutralize our ability or desire to be an influential player in these last of the last days of history before the return of Jesus Christ.”
In “Implosion,” Rosenberg raises several possibilities. First, the U.S. could implode financially and economically. The nation could be devastated by a surprise military or terrorist attack or a series of attacks. The nation could be devastated by an unprecedented series of natural disasters. Or, the U.S. could suddenly lose tens of millions of people during the “Rapture,” a prophecy that says God takes the church out of the world instantaneously – triggering any number of cataclysmic events.
“Maybe it will be a combination of these,” Rosenberg says.
At the same time, Rosenberg is also concerned about the role the U.S. is playing in the nuclear showdown between Iran and Israel. Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has threatened to destroy Israel. Many Western nations are concerned Iran is developing nuclear weapons. In response, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is mulling an attack – possibly this summer or fall – to destroy Iran’s nuclear capability.
At a conference in March at Biola University in Southern California – “Israel, the Church and the Middle East Crisis” – Rosenberg told the audience the showdown could set in motion the fulfillment of prophecies in Ezekiel 38 and 39 regarding the “war of Gog and Magog.” This biblical prediction, Rosenberg says, refers to an end-times attack on Israel by a coalition of nations, including Russia and Iran.
Concerned about the level of America’s support of Israel during this time of crisis, Rosenberg says Genesis 12:3 is clear that God will bless those who bless Israel and curse those who curse Israel.
“We already have enough moral and spiritual problems,” Rosenberg says. “The last thing we need to find ourselves is being cursed by God for turning our back on the nation of Israel. That is a very critical point and as we approach a possible major war between Israel and Iran, maybe this summer or fall, this is a time for Christians and all Americans to be standing with Israel in this fight against radical Islam and the threat that radical mullahs could get their hands on some nuclear weapons. We cannot let that happen.”
Finally, in the book, Rosenberg looks at historic lessons from the remarkable and sweeping Christian revivals known as the First Great Awakening of the early 1700s and the Second Great Awakening of the early 1800s and considers the possibility of a Third Great Awakening today.
Rosenberg says the U.S. has experienced two great spiritual revivals in the past and it could experience another. Rosenberg bases this belief on 2 Chronicles 7:14: “If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, pray, seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”
That’s what God told the ancient Hebrews, Rosenberg says. While it’s not a promise for the U.S. or other nations, Rosenberg says he believes it sets forth a biblical principle.
“The history of Israel in the Bible gives us an understanding of how God operates,” Rosenberg says. “Let me put it this way. God is not a vending machine where if you put in enough prayer quarters we get a Reese’s Pieces bag that pops out.
If we pray, fast and humble ourselves, it doesn’t mean God is obligated to give us a massive spiritual revival to save America because maybe we’ve passed that point. But we can be sure if we don’t pray, fast, humble ourselves and changed our wicked ways, then we definitely can’t expect God to give us a massive revival.”
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In pleading with Congress Wednesday against automatic defense budget cuts, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta also warned of another crippling situation like Pearl Harbor. It won’t come in the form of bombers and torpedo planes though but as hackers and worms of the cyber variety with the ability to cripple U.S. infrastructure.
CNS News reports Panetta saying that those with the capability to launch a cyberattack would be able to “paralyze” the United States. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) asked Panetta to clarify:
“You said something that just kind of went over everybody’s head, I think, that there’s a Pearl Harbor in the making here. You’re talking about shutting down financial systems, releasing chemicals from chemical plants, releasing water from dams, shutting down power systems that can affect the very survival of the nation. What’s the likelihood in the next five years that one of these major events will occur?”
To this Panetta responded simply by saying that the “technological capability” to send our country into a mode like that of Pearl Harbor in a surprise attack is already available now. Panetta’s references to “the next Pearl Harbor” echo sentiments he shared last year with regard to cyberattacks, according to CNS news.
In June 2011, while being confirmed as Defense Secretary, Panetta said to the panel, “The next Pearl Harbor we confront could very well be a cyber attack that cripples our power systems, our grid, our security systems, our financial systems, our governmental systems.”
Continuing to probe on Wednesday, Graham asked about the risk level, which Panetta said was high, especially as the technology develops and the “will” to use it becomes more apparent.
“I’m very concerned that the potential in cyber to be able to cripple our power grid, to be able to cripple our government systems, to be able to cripple our financial system would virtually paralyze this country,” Panetta said. “And, as far as I’m concerned, that represents the potential for another Pearl Harbor as far as the kind of attack that we could be the target of using cyber.”
Those in the United States — both the government and private industry — are already the targets of thousands of attacks per day, according to Panetta. With that, he notes the importance of improving safety of systems in not only the defense sector but the private sector as well.
Earlier this year, the Cyber Intelligence Sharing Protection Act (CISPA) was introduced as proposed legislation that would put in place the infrastructure for private companies to share information with the federal government on the Internet to help prevent electronic attacks from cybercriminals, foreign governments and terrorists.
The Cybersecurity Act of 2012, sponsored by Sens. Joseph Lieberman (I-Conn.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine) was mentioned as well. At this point, CISPA has been passed with bipartisan support in the House and still awaits a Senate vote. The Cybersecurity Act of 2012 has not yet been voted upon.
CISPA has been met with some backlash with those against the proposed legislation saying the language is overly broad and they fear violations of the anti-trust law by the government.
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey weighed in his support of CISPA during Wednesday’s hearing but also said the military is looking to develop “rules of engagement” to respond to cyberattacks and threats, according to CNS News.
The Pentagon faces cuts of about $500 billion in projected spending over 10 years on top of the $492 billion that President Barack Obama and congressional Republicans already agreed to in last summer’s deficit-cutting budget.
Dempsey said the cuts would mean fewer troops, the possible cancellation of major weapons and the disruption of operations around the world.
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Actually, the Islamic world already does have a nuclear bomb—up to 110 of them, in fact—in the form of Pakistan. The difference is that Pakistan's government—while certainly a duplicitous accessory to jihad—is, unlike Iran, currently not run by theocratic, apocalyptic madmen. Of course, that could change at a moment's notice if and when Pakistan's teetering regime is overthrown by the Taliban and/or other assorted Islamic jihadists.
But for now, at least, it's much more likely that if Pakistan uses one of its nukes, it will be to the East, against its arch-rival, India. Iran, on the other hand, clearly has its sights set on the United States, Europe and Israel, as its leaders have never ceased to remind us over the past 33 years.
That's what makes the latest scoop by my friend Reza Kahlili so important. Reza reports that state-run Iranian media outlets published a revealing commentary over the weekend written by an analyst and strategy specialist who works in the camp of Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei. Clearly, the piece would not have been published without the blessing of Khamenei's team. Which means Western leaders had better start paying attention. Here's more, from Kahlili:
Official Iranian media outlets published a commentary Sunday titled “The necessity for the Islamic world to have the atomic bomb,” laying the groundwork for Iran’s refusal to accept limits on its illicit nuclear program.
The essay’s author, Alireza Forghani, is the former governor of southern Iran’s Kish Province and an analyst and a strategy specialist in the camp of the supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
“The fatwa from Imam Khomeini [the founder of Iran's Islamic revolution] said ‘all Islamic countries have Islamic blood,’” Forghani wrote. “Therefore the Islamic world should rise up and shout that a nuclear bomb is our right, and disrupt the dreams of America and Israel.”
“Having a nuclear bomb is our right,” he argued. “Israel would have been destroyed completely 30 years ago” but has survived because it has nuclear weapons.
In February, Forghani laid out the legal case for the annihilation of Israel and all Jewish people. That treatise, which ran in all the Iranian regime’s media outlets, openly called for a pre-emptive strike on Israel.
Among the state-run media carrying Forghani’s new piece—which argues that Iran should have an atomic bomb—is the major outlet Fars News Agency, which is run by the Revolutionary Guards and thus represents the views of the Islamic regime.
“The Islamic republic, after the victory of the 1979 revolution, faced a hard reality of its enemies trying to overthrow the only true Islamic republic in the world,” he wrote. “The enemies of the Islamic republic of Iran, headed by America with cooperation by its European allies and some in Asia—[and] using the tools such as the United Nations, other international organizations and NATO—have continuously pursued their goal of overthrowing the ... government.”
America is the main enemy of Iran, Forghani argued, and is the only country that has used the atomic bomb and brags about its nuclear arsenal, creating fear in nations that might want to challenge it.
Read it all. Yes folks, in case you haven't noticed by now, America is the Iranian regime's main enemy and ultimate target. They are telegraphing their intentions towards us and are very close to acquiring nuclear weapons that will make their apocalyptic visions a reality. Yet our leaders remain paralyzed, impotent and unable to act. By the way, this isn't the first time a member of Iran's regime has openly pined for nuclear bombs—and mused about using them.
Monday, June 18, 2012
America at this time is confronted with a vast array of challenges both internal and external. It was due to my concern as I looked across the horizon that in prayer I began to search and seek the face of God. I began to diligently search the scriptures to seek the answer to one overriding concern. When does God bring judgment on a nation?
Not long after Israel was delivered from slavery in Egypt the Lord led them into the desert. The people began to thirst and complain. They came to a place named Marah. It was out of that experience that God laid before them what they must do to avoid the judgment of God, and with this word he also shows us when a nation or people may expect the judgment of God.
It was there at Marah that the LORD set before them the following decree as a standard to test their faithfulness to him. 26 He said, “If you will listen carefully to the voice of the LORD your God and do what is right in his sight, obeying his commands and keeping all his decrees, then I will not make you suffer any of the diseases I sent on the Egyptians; for I am the LORD who heals you.” (Exodus 15:25B-26 NLT)
In these two verses I believe we can see the standard that God uses to judge a nation. If our leaders and people listen to the voice of the Lord our God and does what is right in his sight and obey his commands and keeps his decrees as laid out in the word of God he will bless that nation. However when a nation turns its back on him and refuses to give heed to his word and direction that nation by doing so has already come under judgment.
Stubbornness a refusal to believe the word God as given by Moses to them, and an arrogance of unbelief, characterized the leadership of the nation of Egypt. In our nation the list is endless but it can be rightly said that not only have our leaders turned their back on the God of the Bible, but do not even want the word of God or prayer to even be allowed into public debate.
In the New Testament the Apostle Peter gave a sober warning to any nation that would harden its heart against the will of God.
They deliberately forget that God made the heavens by the word of his command, and he brought the earth out from the water and surrounded it with water. 6 Then he used the water to destroy the ancient world with a mighty flood. 7 And by the same word, the present heavens and earth have been stored up for fire. They are being kept for the day of judgment, when ungodly people will be destroyed (II Peter 3:5-7)
Our founding fathers trembled for our nation because they knew that God was just. A nation cannot turn its back on God without consequence. Peter in this passage reminds us of truths that the ungodly choose to ignore. It was God who spoke the worlds into existence. It was God in his righteous decree who brought a judgment by water on the world of Noah’s day. It is by the will of God that the heavens are reserved for a judgment by fire. He shall in the end of all things bring upon the ungodly world of that day yet to come.
Yet in the midst of so much that is sobering the Lord in Egypt made a distinction between his people Israel and the nation of Egypt. The prophet Isaiah spoke of a day and time yet in the future with a word of hope for all those who love the Lord.
Darkness as black as night covers all the nations of the earth,
but the glory of the LORD rises and appears over you. (Isaiah 60:2 NLT)
As we shall see as God began to bring judgment on the nation of Egypt he made a distinction between his people Israel and Egypt. So saint of God no matter what may yet come we that tremble at his name and word have his promise that he will protect and care for his own.