Category: Gog-Ezekiel 38 & 39

BIDEN ADMINISTRATION REMAINS SILENT AS IRAN PREPARES TO TAKE URANIUM ENRICHMENT TO 60% AFTER ISRAEL ATTACKED THEIR NATANZ NUCLEAR FACILITY

The Jerusalem Post has learned that the attack was carried out through an explosive device that was smuggled into the facility and detonated remotely. An intelligence official told The New York Times on Tuesday that the attack took out both the primary and backup electrical systems. Iran is almost ready to start enriching uranium to 60% purity at an above-ground plant at Natanz and plans to add 1,024 first-generation IR-1 centrifuges to an underground plant Tehran says was hit by sabotage, the UN atomic watchdog said on Wednesday. Iran has said it will enrich uranium to 60% – a big step closer to the 90% that is weapons-grade from the 20% maximum it has reached so far – in response to what it says was an act of sabotage by Israel against the underground plant.

by Geoffrey Grider April 14, 2021

The alleged Israeli attack on Iran’s Natanz nuclear facility targeted an electrical substation located 40 to 50 meters underground and damaged “thousands of centrifuges,” Iranian officials revealed in recent days.

During all the years of the Trump presidency, Israel lived in relative security with their enemies well aware that the Trump-led United States would step in and defend them should the need arise. But with Joe Biden in the White House, the enemies of Israel know that she is left to fend for herself, and barely three months into Biden’s term Iran has already begun enrichment of the uranium needed for a nuclear bomb to use against the Jewish state.

“Let them all be confounded and turned back that hate Zion.” Psalm 129:5 (KJB)

Without the full support of the United States, Israel is forced to do things like last week’s attack on the Natanz nuclear facility to stall Iran as long as possible from getting the bomb. That attack was successful, but now Iran is fully striving towards creating uranium enriched enough for a nuclear bomb. Iran knows that Joe Biden will do nothing to stop them from getting the bomb, especially after watching Biden authorized $235 million to fund Palestinian terrorists.

As you read this, Russia is on the Ukraine border threatening war, China is on multiple fronts threatening war, and Iran is now enriching uranium, with the tacit blessing of Biden administration, for war against Israel. If you read and believe Ezekiel 39, then you know what’s right around the corner.

Iran has ‘almost completed preparations’ to enrich uranium to 60% -IAEA

FROM THE JERUSALEM POST: The Iranian official stressed that such an operation takes years, saying “the design of the enemy was very beautiful.” Davani added that the substation was built underground in order to protect it from air and missile strikes, and that the attack was carried out either via cyber, sabotaged equipment or sabotage committed by agents.

The Jerusalem Post has learned that the attack was carried out through an explosive device that was smuggled into the facility and detonated remotely. An intelligence official told The New York Times on Tuesday that the attack took out both the primary and backup electrical systems. Iran is almost ready to start enriching uranium to 60% purity at an above-ground plant at Natanz and plans to add 1,024 first-generation IR-1 centrifuges to an underground plant Tehran says was hit by sabotage, the UN atomic watchdog said on Wednesday.

Iran has said it will enrich uranium to 60% – a big step closer to the 90% that is weapons-grade from the 20% maximum it has reached so far – in response to what it says was an act of sabotage by Israel against the underground plant.

“THE AGENCY TODAY VERIFIED THAT IRAN HAD ALMOST COMPLETED PREPARATIONS TO START PRODUCING UF6 ENRICHED UP TO 60% U-235 AT THE NATANZ PILOT FUEL ENRICHMENT PLANT (PFEP),” THE INTERNATIONAL ATOMIC ENERGY AGENCY SAID IN A STATEMENT, REFERRING TO URANIUM HEXAFLUORIDE, THE FORM IN WHICH URANIUM IS FED INTO CENTRIFUGES FOR ENRICHMENT.

Iran’s nuclear deal with major powers only lets Tehran enrich uranium to up to 3.67% purity, one of many limits that it breached more than a year ago in response to Washington’s withdrawal from the deal under President Donald Trump and the reimposition of US sanctions against Tehran.

The deal also says Iran can only produce enriched uranium with up to 5,060 IR-1 centrifuges at its underground Fuel Enrichment Plant (FEP) at Natanz. While it has broken that rule by adding more advanced centrifuges to the FEP, until now it has stuck to the limit on the number of IR-1 machines there.

“IN A REPORT ISSUED TO MEMBER STATES TODAY … DIRECTOR GENERAL RAFAEL MARIANO GROSSI SAID IRAN HAD INFORMED THE AGENCY … THAT THE COUNTRY INTENDS TO INSTALL SIX ADDITIONAL CASCADES OF IR-1 CENTRIFUGES AT THE NATANZ FUEL ENRICHMENT PLANT (FEP) COMPRISING A TOTAL OF 1,024 CENTRIFUGES,” THE IAEA SAID.

That report, one of two issued on Wednesday evening and obtained by Reuters, added: “Iran intends to use 6,084 IR-1 centrifuges installed in 36 cascades (in total at the FEP).”


Fereydoon Abbasi-Davani, former head of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization, told Iranian media on Monday that the attack hit an electrical substation located deep underground and managed to damage both the power distribution system and the cable leading to the centrifuges in order to cut power to them.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=11403

RUSSIA REBUILDING THE TRIUMPHAL ARCH OF PALMYRA IN SYRIA, KNOWN AS THE GATEWAY TO THE TEMPLE OF BAAL, TO PREPARE FOR THE ARRIVAL OF ANTICHRIST

The Arch of Palmyra stood at the entrance to the temple used to worship Bel, also known as Ba’al. Mentioned more than 90 times in the Bible, most notably when Elijah defeated the priests of Ba’al, also known as Moloch, in a contest to bring down fire from heaven to burn a sacrifice, Ba’al became the archetypical form of idol worship. Pantheistic, his adherents worshipped Mother Nature while denying the existence of a creator.

by Geoffrey Grider April 13, 2021

After six years of laying in ruin, the Russians have begun reconstructing the Triumphal Arch of Palmyra in Syria that served as a gateway to a major pagan temple to Baal. Rebuilding the arch is predicted in the Talmud as preceding the Messiah.

Just last month, Pope Francis was in Ur of the Chaldees, taking a Chrislam victory lap in the birthplace of Abraham, and today we are hearing news that Russia is helping Syria to restore the Arch of Palmyra that served the ancient world as a gateway to the Temple of Baal. This is how close we are to the Pretribulation Rapture of the Church.

“And he did that which was evil in the sight of the LORD, after the abominations of the heathen, whom the LORD cast out before the children of Israel. For he built up again the high places which Hezekiah his father had destroyed; and he reared up altars for Baal, and made a grove, as did Ahab king of Israel; and worshipped all the host of heaven, and served them.” 2 Kings 21:2,3 (KJB)

Since the signing of the Abraham Accords, the Middle East has become a very different place, so different in fact that we are watching the entire region preparing itself to receive Antichrist. What could be more fitting than having 2 of the key players mentioned in Ezekiel 39 working on rebuilding the Arch of Palmyra, the gateway to the Temple of Baal? Very soon the man of sin will reveal himself, and you and I who are saved will fly on Flight #777.

Is This Preparation For The Arrival Of Antichrist?

ISRAEL 365 NEWS: The ruins of the ancient city of Palmyra located about 135 miles north of Damascus were a huge tourist attraction, drawing 105,000 visitors a year until the devastating civil war broke out in Syria in 2011. The temple and much of the site were destroyed by the Islamic State (ISIS) in 2015. The Monumental Arch, a centerpiece of the site that was mostly destroyed, was built during the reign of Roman Emperor Septimius Severus in about 200 CE. It is estimated that only 30-40% of the stones in the arch remain.

Nazir Awad, director-general of the Syrian Antiquities and Museums Directorate, explained to Al-Ahed News that “meetings have taken place with Russian experts to discuss the work that will begin to restore and resurrect the Arch of Triumph. They are in the process of documenting and studying in order to outline the restoration work.”

“THE NECESSARY PROGRAMS HAVE BEEN PUT IN PLACE TO ESTABLISH WORKING GROUPS CONCERNED WITH DOCUMENTATION AND PREPARATION OF DOCUMENTS AS PART OF THE RESTORATION WORK AND OTHER TEAMS TO HANDLE THE RUBBLE,” HE ADDED.

Awad points out that “the work did not actually start, but a working paper was drawn up from the Syrian side, with specific tasks prepared for teams, as this type of work follows global standards. The coronavirus is affecting the progress of the restoration work with the Association Stone Industry of Russia, and the Directorate is in contact with UNESCO and other institutions.”

“THE SYRIAN EXPERTS HAVE PUT IN PLACE SOME PLANS, AND THERE IS NO PRECISE TIMETABLE FOR THE COMPLETION OF THE WORK, BUT STUDIES ON RESTORATION, RUBBLE, AND SO ON MAY BE READY WITHIN SIX OR EIGHT MONTHS.”

The executive director of the Palmyra Restoration Fund, Sergei Tiglinov, said that specialists will make a 3D scan of all the elements, translate them into a virtual model, and then put them together in the restored monument.

Restoration work began this week after a memorandum of understanding was reached between the Syrian Ministry of Culture and the Association Stone Industry of Russia. In 2019, the  State Hermitage Museum in Saint Petersburg announced plans to restore the site in conjunction with the Institute of the History of Material Culture of the Russian Academy of Sciences and Syria’s Directorate General of Antiquities and Museums (DGAM). The project will also be under the auspices of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

The site, once a vital point on the Silk Road caravan route, has artifacts dating back to the Neolithic period. The Temple of Palmyra was dedicated in 32 CE to the worship of Ba’al. The earliest known inhabitants were the Amorites in the early second millennium BCE. As such, it hosted many monumental projects including the Temple of Bel (or Ba’al). The temple was built on the site of a prior pagan temple dating back to the third millennium BCE. The most recent of the temples were dedicated in 32 CE. Converted into a Christian church during the Byzantine Era, parts of the structure were modified into a mosque by Muslims in 1132. It remained in use as a mosque until the 1920s.

The arch stood at the entrance to the temple used to worship Bel, also known as Ba’al. Mentioned more than 90 times in the Bible, most notably when Elijah defeated the priests of Ba’al, also known as Moloch, in a contest to bring down fire from heaven to burn a sacrifice, Ba’al became the archetypical form of idol worship. Pantheistic, his adherents worshipped Mother Nature while denying the existence of a creator. Followers of Ba’al engaged in bisexual orgies and sacrificed human infants, burning them alive. Anthropologists conjecture that the child sacrifice was to cull the population after the inevitable outcome of wanton sexuality.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=11400

AS TENSIONS RISE: THE US AND RUSSIA DEPLOY BATTLESHIPS TO THE BLACK SEA

BY DAVID SIDMAN | APR 12, 2021 | US-ISRAEL RELATIONS

O mortal, turn your face toward Gog of the land of Magog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal. Prophesy against him Ezekiel 38:2 (The Israel BibleTM)

Washington will deploy two battleships to the Black Sea next week Turkey said on Friday as reported by the AP. Russia has amassed its military forces near the Ukrainian border while accusing non-coastal NATO forces of beefing up naval activity in the region.

Meanwhile, Washington reports that Russia has amassed greater military forces on the eastern Ukrainian border than they have at any other time since 2014 when Moscow annexed Crimea from Ukraine and supported pro-Kremlin separatists in Ukraine’s Donbass region.

Violence has been ignited between Ukrainian forces and the separatists, arousing concerns of a major escalation. Russia’s President Vladimir Putin accused Kievv on Friday of “dangerous provocative actions” in the Donbass region while speaking with Turkey’s President Tayyip Erdogan. Turkey, who is a member of NATO, said on Friday that Washington will deploy two battleships to the Black Sea from April 14-15.

“A notice was sent to us 15 days ago via diplomatic channels that two US warships would pass to the Black Sea, in line with the Montreux Convention. The ships will remain in the Black Sea until May 4,” Turkey’s foreign ministry stated.

The Montreux Convention is a 1936 accord that provides Ankara with control over the Dardanelles and Bosporus straits, each of which connects to the Black Sea. The agreement also regulates the movement of naval warships.

The Black Sea is considered to be a flashpoint for brinkmanship between Russia and NATO member states. NATO forces have beefed up their presence in the region amid increased tensions. There have also oftentimes been encounters between naval vessels and aircraft from each side.

Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Alexander Grushko expressed his concerns on Friday over intensified naval activity in the Black Sea by forces that didn’t possess a coastline in the region, seemingly referring to the US.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=11390

REVELATION: IRAN AND CHINA SIGN MIND-NUMBING 25-YEAR, $400 BILLION DOLLAR COMPREHENSIVE STRATEGIC PARTNERSHIP BETWEEN THE TWO DICTATOR NATIONS

The deal with China marked the first time Iran has signed such a lengthy agreement with a major world power. In 2001, Iran and Russia signed a 10-year cooperation agreement, mainly in the nuclear field, that was lengthened to 20 years through two five-year extensions. The New York Times reported that China will invest some $400 billion in Iran in exchange for oil as part of the deal. The two countries will also step up military cooperation with joint training, research and intelligence sharing.

by Geoffrey Grider March 28, 2021

Iran and China on Saturday signed a 25-year strategic cooperation agreement addressing economic issues amid crippling US sanctions on Tehran, according to Iranian state media.

 

Under Donald Trump, America was in full control of the Middle East, doing things like declaring Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, creating the Abraham Accords and checking the dictatorial ambitions of nations like Iran in check. Under the trojan horse presidency of Joe Biden, who has abandoned the Middle East and especially Israel, a power vacuum now exists that China is only too eager to step in and fill. Yesterday, China signed the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership with Iran, and the balance of power in the Middle East shifts once again.

“And he gathered them together into a place called in the Hebrew tongue Armageddon.” Revelation 16:16 (KJB)

The United States must decrease, that is a foregone conclusion, and the powers of darkness like Iran, China, North Korea, Russia and all the others we read about in Ezekiel 39 must increase. Naturally, one of the very first things to happen after they signed was to discuss Iran hosting direct talks between Israel and the Palestinians. Excuse me while I roll my eyes with pretend shock and surprise. Ezekiel 39 right on track, Flight #777 preparing for liftoff.

Iran, China sign huge 25-year strategic deal; could reduce US regional influence

FROM THE TIMES OF ISRAEL: The agreement, dubbed the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership, covers a variety of economic activity from oil and mining to promoting industrial activity in Iran, as well as transportation and agricultural collaborations, according to the report. No additional details of the agreement were revealed as Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and Chinese counterpart Wang Yi took part in a ceremony marking the event.

The New York Times reported that China will invest some $400 billion in Iran in exchange for oil as part of the deal. The two countries will also step up military cooperation with joint training, research and intelligence sharing, the report said. China is Iran’s leading trade partner and was one of the biggest buyers of Iranian oil before then US president Donald Trump reimposed sweeping unilateral sanctions in 2018 after abandoning a multilateral nuclear agreement with Tehran.

The deal signed Saturday could undermine US leverage over Iran ahead of expected negotiations and lessen American influence in the Middle East. Ongoing US sanctions against Iran could hamper its trade with China despite Saturday’s agreement, however.

The Times report said Iran was prepared to host direct talks between Israel and the Palestinians, further suggesting that US influence in the region could be waning.

“WE BELIEVE THIS DOCUMENT CAN BE VERY EFFECTIVE IN DEEPENING” IRAN-CHINA RELATIONS, IRAN’S FOREIGN MINISTRY SPOKESMAN SAEED KHATIBZADEH SAID, RECALLING THAT THE PACT HAD FIRST BEEN PROPOSED DURING A VISIT TO TEHRAN BY CHINESE PRESIDENT XI JINPING IN JANUARY 2016.

Xi and his Iranian counterpart Hassan Rouhani agreed then to establish a roadmap for “reciprocal investments in the fields of transport, ports, energy, industry and services.”

“IRAN’S GOVERNMENT AND PEOPLE ARE STRIVING, AS THEY ALWAYS HAVE, TO BROADEN RELATIONS WITH TRUSTWORTHY, INDEPENDENT COUNTRIES LIKE CHINA,” SUPREME LEADER AYATOLLAH ALI KHAMENEI SAID AT THE TIME, DESCRIBING THE PROPOSED COOPERATION AGREEMENT AS “CORRECT AND REASONABLE.”

Xi has championed the Belt and Road Initiative, a plan to fund infrastructure projects and increase China’s sway overseas.

The deal with China marked the first time Iran has signed such a lengthy agreement with a major world power. In 2001, Iran and Russia signed a 10-year cooperation agreement, mainly in the nuclear field, that was lengthened to 20 years through two five-year extensions

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=11384

Iran, Russia and Turkey signal growing alliance

For years, Turkey would say one thing to Moscow and Tehran while telling Washington’s Iran hawks that Turkey was “against Russia and Iran.”

By SETH J. FRANTZMAN   

MARCH 21, 2021 18:10

Iran’s Foreign Minister Javad Zarif was very content during a trip to Turkey on Friday. He said it was productive and smiled alongside his Turkish counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu. He said it was a “wonderful” trip where he spoke with his “brother Cavusoglu.”

The trip signals the growing alliance that Turkey and Iran have in the region.

Zarif said: “As before, constructive engagement on bilateral and regional issues. Ultimate aim: Apply Iran and Turkey’s experience of 400 years of peace to our region. Together, anything is possible.”

Meanwhile, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan took Russia’s side in a growing spat with the US, slamming US President Joe Biden who is widely hated by Turkey’s ruling party.

He claimed that Biden’s recent comments about Russian President Vladimir Putin were unacceptable and “not fitting of a president.”

This isn’t just because of the tone of Biden’s comments, in which Biden called Putin a “killer.” Turkey’s president and regime often lashes out at other countries and leaders, belittling and threatening them with insults.

The messaging from Ankara is that Russia and Turkey are growing together as allies and partners. They work together in Syria, Libya and the Caucasus; their goal is to supplant US influence and divide up many areas of the Middle East between themselves.

They seek to control violence in these areas. For instance, Turkey got the Syrian rebels, who were fighting the Russian-backed Syrian regime, to change their course and fight Kurds so the Syrian regime could prosper. Then Turkey shipped the rebels to fight elsewhere to weaken the rebellion. Ten years after the start of the Syrian conflict, it is mostly Turkey that is responsible for sidelining the rebellion.

Now, enter Iran.

Iran, Turkey and Russia have worked together in the Astana process since 2017 to manage Syria – and they exclude the US. Zarif’s trip to Istanbul is just one of many in which Turkish and Iranian counterparts work together and demonstrate their warm connections.

Turkey wants more trade with Iran via rail links and also wants to work with Tehran in other ways. From Russia, Ankara wants more S-400s and military hardware.

Turkish media illustrated how the relations are growing. Turkish daily Hurriyet reported that “Hakan Fidan, the head of Turkey’s National Intelligence Organization, also attended the meeting, sources from the Foreign Ministry said on condition of anonymity.”

A recent deal between Baghdad and Erbil for the security of the Sinjar province and intensified dialogue between Turkey and Iraq is aimed at curbing the PKK’s (Kurdistan Workers Party) influence in a wider region in northern Iraq and eastern Syria.

Meanwhile, Turkey, Russia and Qatar issued a joint statement last week following talks between their foreign ministers in Doha, vowing to “defend Syria’s territorial integrity in accordance with the UN Charter,” the report notes.

Iran welcomes “any initiative that eases the pain of Syrian people and achieves stability and peace in this country,” Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh said, stressing that the Astana talks among Ankara, Moscow and Tehran were one of the most successful initiatives to put an end to the Syrian conflict.

A month ago, there were rumors that Turkey and Iran might clash in Iraq, but now it appears that the countries have put aside any differences there as well. Turkey wants Iran to help it fight Kurds, which it alleges are part of the PKK.

Ankara is trying to ban opposition parties by labeling them “terrorists” linked to the PKK. The US has expressed concern, but Turkey hopes it can model its authoritarian regime on Russia and Iran. It is learning from Russia how to deal with dissidents – like how Russia dealt with Putin critic Alexei Navalny who was sent to a Russian penal colony.

For many years, Ankara would say one thing to Moscow and Tehran about partnership while telling Washington’s Iran hawks that it was “against Russia and Iran.”

Turkey would mobilize its strong DC lobbyists to push narratives from how Ankara was “fighting terrorism” to how it was challenging Russia and Iran “geopolitically.”

However, the reality was that Turkey was always working closely with Russia and Iran. It invented an imaginary “terrorist” threat from the Kurdish region of Afrin in 2018 to justify an invasion. It even pretended to be fighting ISIS when it was allowing ISIS families to transit from Raqqa to Idlib.

ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was found a few hundred meters from the Turkish border in Idlib. Turkey’s use of its lobbyists to claim it was confronting Iran was only a talking point for the Trump administration.

Even after the administration left, some of those who were close to Turkey continued to push this narrative. But even Turkey is now claiming to distance itself from some Muslim Brotherhood extremist activists in a bid to try to patch things up with Arab states in the region.

This is the long-term goal of Turkey in finding an accommodation with states in the region and bringing together its alliance with Iran and Russia to legitimize its continued occupation of parts of Syria and bases in Iraq.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=11375

9 Signs That Chess Pieces Are Being Moved Into Place For A Major War In The Middle East

March 7, 2021 by Michael Snyder

The American people are really going to regret putting the warmongers back in control.  Joe Biden has been in the White House for less than two months, and the warmongers that Biden has surrounded himself with have been feverishly setting the stage for the next war in the Middle East.  I do not believe that it will start within the next week, but I do believe that it is inevitable.  While President Trump was in the White House for four years, the U.S. didn’t start any new conflicts, but now the Biden administration is quite determined to start projecting “American influence” all over the globe once again.  Most Americans don’t understand the bigger picture, but the truth is that this is going to have very serious implications over the next few years.

In this article, I would like to examine some of the chess moves that have been made since Joe Biden entered the White House.  As you will see, a very troubling picture emerges once you start putting all of the pieces together.

#1 Literally one day after Biden was inaugurated, a massive U.S. military convoy rolled into Syria

A large US military convoy entered northeastern Syria on Thursday, Syrian state news agency SANA reports, citing sources on the ground.

According to the report, the convoy included some 40 trucks and armored vehicles and was backed from the air by helicopters.

President Trump had tried very hard to disengage from the war in Syria, but Biden has made it crystal clear that the U.S. will be heavily involved in that conflict moving forward.

#2 Just a few weeks later, Joe Biden conducted his first airstrike against Iranian-backed forces inside Syria…

The US has carried out an air strike targeting Iran-backed militias in Syria, in the first military action undertaken by the Biden administration.

The Pentagon said the strike destroyed “multiple facilities” and was ordered in response to attacks against US and coalition personnel in Iraq.

Militia officials said one person had been killed but a war monitor reported at least 22 fatalities.

#3 Of course it was inevitable that Iranian-backed forces would respond, and they retaliated by launching rockets at a military base in Iraq where U.S. forces are stationed.  Just a couple days ago, new Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said that there will be a U.S. military response “at a time and place of our own choosing”

Defense Sec. Lloyd Austin tells @MarthaRaddatz the U.S. is still assessing who carried out recent rocket attack on base in Iraq housing U.S. troops—and that if the U.S. decides to respond, it will be “at a time and place of our own choosing.”

#4 More U.S. airstrikes may come sooner rather than later.  In fact, it is being reported that the U.S. has just sent six B-52 bombers to Diego Garcia…

The U.S. Air Force is sending six B-52 Stratofortress bombers to Diego Garcia, a military hub that acts as a strategic location for operations in both the Middle East and the Pacific.

Citing a U.S. official, CNN on Monday reported that the Cold War-era bomber will be “available for operations against Iran if ordered.”

#5 The Biden administration is also sending approximately 10,000 more U.S. troops to the Middle East…

Once the amphibious assault ship Bataan, which is moving toward the Middle East, arrives, the U.S. will have added roughly 10,000 personnel to the area within the last week, according to The Wall Street Journal.

#6 Russia has been busy making moves in the region as well.  On Friday, Russia conducted an air strike on an oil-loading facility in Syria that is used by opposition forces that are backed by Turkey, Saudi Arabia and the Biden administration…

A suspected missile strike on an oil-loading facility used by Turkey-backed opposition forces in northern Syria sparked a massive blaze across a large area where oil tankers are normally parked, aerial and satellite images show.

Syrian opposition groups and at least one war monitor blamed Russia for the strike Friday night near the towns of Jarablus and al-Bab, near the border with Turkey. In a report, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, based in Britain, said Russian warships in the Mediterranean had fired three missiles that struck primitive oil refineries and tanker trucks in the region.

#7 Meanwhile, Israel continues to hit strategically important targets inside Syria on a regular basis.  The following comes from a news report that was published in late February

Syrian air defenses were activated in the capital Damascus and its southern suburbs Sunday night to repel an Israeli missile attack, state media reported. There was no word on casualties.

State TV quoted an unnamed military official as saying that most of the Israeli missiles were shot down before reaching their targets near Damascus.

#8 Israel is particularly interested in keeping Iran from developing nuclear weapons.  In an interview with Fox News, Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz just stated that Israel is ready to attack Iran without any U.S. help

The Israeli military is updating plans to strike Iranian nuclear sites and is prepared to act independently, Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz told Fox News.

Israel has identified numerous targets inside Iran that would hurt its ability to develop a nuclear bomb.

“If the world stops them before, it’s very much good. But if not, we must stand independently and we must defend ourselves by ourselves,” Gantz said in his first sit-down interview with an American outlet.

#9 During a phone call last Thursday between Kamala Harris and Benjamin Netanyahu, the Israeli Prime Minister made it exceedingly clear that his nation is ready to do whatever it takes to prevent the Iranians from developing their own nukes…

“The prime minister said we would continue to strengthen our intelligence and security cooperation and said during their conversation that as prime minister of Israel, he is totally committed to preventing Iran from developing nuclear weapons that are meant for our destruction.”

Of course the Iranians have no plans to back down, and that makes a military conflict between Israel and Iran inevitable.

There will be war in the Middle East, and the horror of that conflict will shock the entire planet.

And once that war begins, it will greatly accelerate our economic problems and the ongoing political turmoil in this country.

So enjoy this brief period of relative stability while you can, because our world is about to start changing in dramatic ways.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=11350

Israel in talks with Saudi, UAE, Bahrain for defense alliance against Iran

Following op-ed by Ronald Lauder in Saudi paper, PMO says its ‘not confirming report, but we are always interested in upgrading ties with our Middle East partners.’

By LAHAV HARKOV   

MARCH 1, 2021 18:07

Israel, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain discussed expanding cooperation in facing its common enemies, an Israeli official with knowledge of the matter said on Monday.

The matter is being “informally discussed,” the source said, pointing out that the countries are American allies. All four view a nuclear Iran as a major threat, and have been eyeing the Biden administration’s plan to rejoin the 2015 nuclear deal with concern.

“There is much to be gained by expanding cooperation,” the source said.

The remarks came following an article by World Jewish Congress President Ron Lauder in Arab News calling for a “NATO of the Middle East.” Saudi Arabia does not have a free press, and Arab News is owned by Prince Turki bin Salman Al Saud, a son of King Salman and brother of Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman, and is seen as reflecting the Saudi government’s official views.

Lauder wrote that his contacts in Arab states viewed Israel as the only reliable ally against Iran, and vice-versa. He said they are “contemplating, aghast, the West’s inability to halt these belligerent, dangerous developments” of Iran resuming uranium enrichment and limiting International Atomic Energy Agency inspectors’ access to nuclear sites.

“Facing the accelerating threat of a malevolent Iran and the weakness of a coronavirus-hit world, the path toward self-reliance seems also to be the only path forward,” Lauder wrote. “Israelis and Arabs should seize the opportunity to work together to save the Middle East from the looming catastrophe of extremism and nuclearization.”

Last week, i24 News reported that Israel is in talks with the three Gulf states about a defense alliance.

The Prime Minister’s Office said it is “not confirming the report, but we are always interested in upgrading ties with our Middle East partners.”

One early indicator of a possible defense alliance is that Israel did not object to the US selling F-35 fighter jets to the UAE, after the countries normalized ties as part of the Abraham Accords last year. Under US law, Washington must make sure its weapons sales in the Middle East do not threaten Israel’s qualitative military edge in the region; following meetings between Defense Minister Benny Gantz and his US counterpart at the time, Jerusalem gave the green light to sell the planes to Abu Dhabi.

Israel still does not have official ties with Saudi Arabia. Israel grew closer with the three Gulf states with which it is discussing further security cooperation in the aftermath of the 2015 deal between world powers and Iran, which they felt does not prevent Iran from developing a nuclear weapon once the agreement expires.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and MBS, as the Saudi crown prince is known, secretly met in Neom, a planned futuristic-Saudi city on the Red Sea, in November of last year.

Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi spoke with Omani Foreign Minister Badr Albusaidi on Monday.

“Views were exchanged on a number of issues of common interest, as well as the importance of supporting all efforts aimed at achieving peace and stability in the region,” Ashkenazi said. “We agreed to maintain our direct channel of communication and to further enhance cooperation.”

Israel does not have official diplomatic relations with Oman, but Netanyahu led a delegation to the country in 2018.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=11329

NETANYAHU’S PURIM WARNING TO IRAN: LIKE HAMAN, YOUR PLOT TO ANNIHILATE US WILL FAIL TOO

BY DAVID SIDMAN | FEB 25, 2021 | BIBLICAL NEWS

Haman plotted to do away with all the Yehudim, Mordechai‘s people, throughout the kingdom of Ahasuerus. Esther 3:6 (The Israel BibleTM)

As US president Joe Biden is expected to renew the Iran nuclear deal and remove the sanctions placed upon it, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu responded on Tuesday to what he says is the Islamic Republic’s efforts to obtain nuclear weapons reports 0404.

“On the eve of the holiday of Purim I am telling those who want to destroy us, Iran and its proxies throughout the Middle East: 2,500 years ago, a different oppressive Persian regime tried to annihilate the Jewish nation and just like they failed then, so too will you fail today. We will not allow your extremist, brutal regime obtain nuclear weapons.”

Invoking Jewish history, Netanyahu added: “We did not make the journey throughout the generations and over thousands of years to return to the land of Israel just to allow some basket-case regime of Ayatollahs to finish off the story of the establishment of the Jewish people. We are not sacrificing our loved ones for any agreement with an extremist dictatorship like yours.”

“We have already seen the nature of agreements with extremist regimes like yours. In the past century and in this century with the government of North Korea. With or without an agreement, we will do everything in our power to ensure you don’t obtain a nuclear weapon” Netanyahu concluded.

In a possible response to Netanyahu’s sentiments, Israel365 reported that Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei tweeted that nuclear weapons violate Islam.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=11322

Nagorno-Karabakh Over? The Ottoman War Machine Is Just Getting Started

by Andrew Bieszad on February 10, 2021 in FeaturedGeneral

From September 2020 to November 2020, Armenia and Azerbaijan went to war over the region of Nagorno-Karabakh, which has been disputed between the two groups for a long time. Azerbaijan won the war not because of superior troops, but as Shoebat.com and other sites noted, she made extensive use of drone strikes using drones given to her by Turkey. Thus, while the data indicated that Armenia seems to have had better overall fighters potentially, no man is a match for a killing robot in terms of consistency, accuracy, and lethality. This was what made the fundamental difference.

Azerbaijan has openly said that she and Turkey are very close, and Turkey has expressed, with Azerbaijan’s consent, eventually merging the two nations together as a part of a renewed Ottoman Empire in formation. While Russia immediately stepped into Armenia following the Azeri victory and potentially jeopardized any Turkish plans for self-expansion at the time, it certainly has not dissuaded the Ottoman juggernaut from continuing her plans for the future of a new Empire. As the Azeri News.AZ points out, Turkey and Azerbaijan recently has been part of a series of military exercises together.

Turkey’s Ministry of National Defense has released new video footage of the joint Winter Exercise 2021 that is going on in Kars.

During the regular stage of the exercises, the tasks were carried out with the involvement of tanks and howitzer-guns, the Azerbaijani Defense Ministry told AzVision.az.

The exercises will last until February 12.

It should be noted that the Winter Exercise 2021 is held with the participation of units of the Turkish Armed Forces and the Azerbaijani Combined Arms Army. (source)

But it should not be said that Turkey is alone. As she is practicing with Azerbaijan, she is also at the same tim, in the Black Sea, engaging in Naval exercises with the US warship USS Donald Cook as the Turkish Ministry of Defense tweeted. These exercises also included F-16 fighter jets.

If one believes that the situation in Nagorno-Karabakh is over, one is gravely mistaken.

Shoebat.com has pointed that the US has been a formal national ally of Turkey since 1887 beginning with the diplomat Oscar Straus’s outreach to the then Ottoman Empire. Prior to that, the US often sold guns and other weapons to Turkey. If one wants proof of this, all one has to do is to go to the Wadsworth Atheneum (a history museum) in Harford, Connecticut, and one can see an entire display for Colt firearms (as the company is from Hartford) where one will find an ample collection of metals given by various Ottoman Sultans to Colt for their assistance in selling weapons to the Ottomans. Be aware also that many of these guns were later used to murder Christians, such as with the infamous Hamidian massacres of 1895 that were and historians consider to be predecessors to the Armenian Genocide.

Historically speaking, the US tends to side with Turkey in major conflicts. The same can be said about Germany, for while the US went to war against Germany in World War II, the fact that she immediately turned around after the war and not just helped rebuild Germany, but took the very National Socialist philosophy that she so condemned and started promoting it- with the direct help of the same National Socialists she was at war against -around the world says that the US did not care about the actual philosophy at all, but that it was a power contest and she wanted to so secure what she felt was her own place.

The same situation seems to be the case with Turkey, and even Japan. The US seems to think that she can “control” these nations like a “dog on a leash” and make them do what she wants, and thinks that she may have succeeded in that. However, these nations all have very long, violent, aggressive histories that are much deeper than the whole history of the US. Turkey is no fool, and she knows what is going on, and is playing along because she is being forced to lest she face potentially crippling subjugation. However, the same tendencies of the past are still present, and all it would take is for the US to lose control over her own domestic or aspects of her international situation for things to break down, as a wolf will always remain a wolf.

We know for a fact, for example, that the US has nuclear weapons stored at Incirlik AF in Turkey. If something were to happen to the US- and problems always do -it is not unreasonable to think that if Turkey believes she could get away with it, she would raid the base and steal the weapons, and may even use them against the US. One cannot predict what such a menacing nation like Turkey may do if given the opportunity.

Likewise, people may think that the events of Armenia a century ago may not happen again, but to think this is to be ignorant of history. Unlike the average American it seems, many people have long memories and do not forgive easily or at all. For Turkey, Armenia’s existence is a job left unfinished, and the extermination of the Armenian race a task yet to be completed. Turkey’s own actions suggest this, since following her assistance to Azerbaijan in taking Nagorno-Karabakh and now militarizing the Aras River area, Armenia is almost entirely isolated from all neighbors except Turkey or Turkey Azeri ally, and thus is a ‘nation within a nation’, surrounded and having no way to escape. All Turkey would have to do is to launch weapons, or just march in, and Armenia cannot survive. Turkish militarism is back and for the future is here to stay. They may not carry spears or scimitars or dress in funny clothes, but they are no less deadly than in the past and arguably are deadlier now with western training and the assistance of nations such as the US and Germany who don’t care what Turkey does so long as it does not hurt their image for their stockholders and money changers

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=11301

Ankara May Be Poised for Pivot From Middle East to Central Asia

By Dorian Jones

February 01, 2021 04:48 PM

ISTANBUL – Turkey and Azerbaijan are continuing to deepen ties by starting a major joint military exercise Monday. The display of force comes as some analysts suggest Ankara could be on the verge of a foreign policy pivot away from the Middle East to Central Asia.

The 12-day military exercise involves tank divisions, airborne units, and “special forces.” Turkish-made weaponry is also set to play a prominent role.

Turkish-made drones were pivotal in Azerbaijan’s defeat in October of Armenian separatist forces, in a battle over the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh enclave in Azerbaijan.

Azerbaijan’s victory is seen as a strategic triumph for Turkey. “Turkey has invested very heavily in the Azeri military,” said international relations professor Serhat Guvenc of Istanbul’s Kadir Has University. The countries have close ethnic ties and define their relationship as “one nation, two states.”

The speed and decisiveness of Azerbaijan’s military success boosted Turkish influence in the Caucasus, further consolidating close ties between Ankara and Baku.

“Turkey is expanding its influence in Caucasia; it will do more so in the future,” said Huseyin Bagci, head of the Ankara-based Foreign Policy Institute.  

Bagci suggests Ankara is poised for a shift in foreign policy, saying, “Turkey does not play the card of Islam and Middle East orientation anymore, but now rather more nationalistic, and of Turkish nationalism.”

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has traditionally positioned himself as the defender of global Muslim rights, in particular the Palestinians. Ankara is also a strong backer of the Muslim Brotherhood across the Middle East, and Hamas, which is designated by the United States and European Union as a terrorist organization.

Much to Israel’s anger and Washington’s dismay, Hamas routinely held meetings in Turkey, and Ankara hosted its leaders. Such moves traditionally played well among Erdogan’s religious voting base.

But analysts say Ankara is concerned about the U.S.-brokered Abraham Accords that saw the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain normalize ties with Israel last year, with Sudan close behind.

With reports of other Arab countries, including Turkey’s close ally Qatar, ready to join the Abraham Accords, Bagci says there is awareness in Ankara that Turkey is facing growing isolation in the Middle East.

“The Islamic card and talk of Muslim unity for Erdogan doesn’t function anymore, after the Abraham Accords,” said Bagci. “Everybody in Turkey realizes the Arabs fight amongst each other, but they also make peace amongst each another. The Arabs are not the Turks. It’s so simple. The Turkish public is more conscious of this, and the Israelis are the winners.”

But other analysts remain cautious of a Turkish shift away from the Middle East and toward the courting of ethnic Turkic Central Asian states. “It’s too early to say, but there are some indications,” said Guvenc.

Guvenc points out right-wing political parties in Turkey have broadly followed a philosophy of nationalism and Islam, created by the country’s military rulers of the early 1980s under the banner “Turkish Islamic synthesis.” 

“I would say the emphasis on the Turko component of this synthesis would make sense for this government,” said Guvenc.

Erdogan’s parliamentary coalition partner, the nationalist MHP, is seen as backing a shift in policy. “With MHP, his coalition partner, Erdogan will play more on Turkish nationalism than the Islamic card,” said Bagci.

But any reorientation toward the Caucasus and beyond to Central Asia countries like Turkmenistan, Tajikistan and Kazakhstan isn’t without risk.

“This will not go down well with Russia, definitely, which considers this region as its sphere of influence,” said Guvenc. “In central Asia, Turkey has already lost the battle and struggle for influence with Russia, and the Chinese are also rising its influence.”

Russia thwarted previous efforts by Turkey to project influence across Central Asia. But Zaur Gasimov, an expert on Russia and Central Asia at Germany’s Bonn University, suggests Ankara has a stronger hand. 

“Compared with the 1990s and 2000s, Turkey nowadays has much more leverage to influence Central Asian republics using its economy and migration policy just like Russia,” he said.

Turkey hosts many migrant workers from across the Central Asian states, helping to develop and strengthen economic and cultural ties.

A growing Turkish presence in Central Asia could be welcomed in the region to mitigate Russia’s powerful influence.

“For Kazakhstan, the deepening of cooperation with Turkey, for example, could be needed to obtain a sort of balance in its relations with Moscow,” said Gasimov. 

Gasimov says Kazakh unease over Moscow has been heightened since Russia’s annexation in 2014 of Ukraine’s Crimea, a region populated by ethnic Russians.

“Kazakhstani elites are concerned about Russian policy towards Ukraine and feel insecure about the northern provinces populated by ethnic Russians in Kazakhstan. Several high-rank Russian politicians claimed Kazakh territory in the recent past,” he added.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=11285