Category: Antichrist

Turkey deploys 2,000 troops to Libya to Reestablish Muslim Caliphate with Jerusalem as Capital

By Adam Eliyahu Berkowitz January 21, 2020 , 2:01 pm

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 Bible™)

A new military incursion into Libya is part of a long-awaited dream by Turkish President Erdogan to return the Ottoman Caliphate, a global Islamic rule that subjugated Jews and Christians for six centuries.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) reported on Monday that Turkish-backed Syrian mercenaries have begun arriving in Libya. Approximately 2,400 troops are already in Tripoli while another 1,700 are currently undergoing training in Turkey. Activists informed the SOHR that Turkey intends to send a total of 6,000 troops to Libya. 

Turkey is backing the Tripoli-based Government of National Accord (GNA) in its fight against the eastern-based Libyan National Army led by General Khalifa Haftar and backed by Russia. The GNA is supported by Egypt and Saudi Arabia. The GNA also receives air support from the United Arab Emirates.

Until now, the role of the Turkish military has been limited to 35 military personnel involved solely in training and advisory roles. The new Syrian troops are mercenaries, hired from rebel groups opposing Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. The Turkish government will pay each soldier a monthly stipend of $2,000, far more than the $50 they earned to fight back home in Syria. The Syrian troops are also fighting against the Kurds in Libya.

Turkish intervention is a manifestation of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s aspiration to establish himself as the leader of a global Islamic nation. The SOHR reported that a commander of the Turkish-backed Syrian troops en route to Libya announced as their battle cry, “We will present our souls for the Ottoman Caliphate.”

The Ottoman Caliphate, known in the West as the Ottoman or Turkish Empire, was founded in the 13th Century and eventually controlled much of Southeast Europe, Western Asia, and North Africa. This control lasted for several hundred years and only truly ended after WWI when the empire was partitioned by the Allied Powers and the 101st and final Caliph, Sultan Abdulmecid II, was deposed and expelled.

It should be noted that after his expulsion from Turkey, Sultan Abdulmecid II was in close correspondence with the Mufti of Jerusalem, Haj Amin el-Husseini, the founder of Palestinian nationalism who later became a close friend of Adolf Hitler and an advocate of the Holocaust.

The Ottoman Empire was a Sunni Caliphate which exerted a hegemonic power of Muslim control over the non-Muslim populations, most notably a Christian/Catholic majority. In accordance with the Muslim dhimmi system, Christians were guaranteed limited freedoms, such as the right to worship. They were forbidden to carry weapons or ride on horseback, their houses could not overlook those of Muslims, in addition to various other legal limitations. Many Christians and Jews converted in order to secure full status in society.

Before his election, Turkish political analysts feared that candidate Erdogan’s rise to power was fueled by his aspirations and those of his supporters to return Turkey to its former glory at the head of the Muslim world. His term in office confirmed these fears. In the wake of a failed attempt at a coup by a faction in the army in 2016, Erdogan mobilized the military against the populace and jailed hundreds of dissidents. 

But Erdogan’s Caliphate aspirations extend beyond the borders of Turkey and target Israel and, most specifically, Jerusalem. At a summit of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in Istanbul last year, Erdogan called on all of the 57 Muslim member nations to join together against Israel to avenge the deaths of Palestinians killed while charging the southern border with Gaza.

In 2015, Erdogan gave a speech commemorating 562 years since the Turks captured Constantinople (now known as Istanbul) from European Christians in which he called for the Muslim conquest of Jerusalem. 

“Conquest is Mecca, conquest is Saladin, it’s to hoist the Islamic flag over Jerusalem again; conquest is the heritage of Mehmed II and conquest means forcing Turkey back on its feet,” Erdogan said in the speech in Istanbul.

Erdogan’s support of the Palestinians was returned in kind. In a Muslim gathering on the Temple Mount earlier this month commemorating the conquest of Constantinople in 1453 CE,  Nidhal “Abu Ibrahim” Siam, a Palestinian preacher, addressed a crowd of approximately 7,000. 

As reported by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), Siam told the crowd that three prophecies would soon be fulfilled: a rightly-guided caliphate will be established, that Jerusalem will be liberated and established as its capital and that Islam “will throw its neighbors to the ground” thereby achieving world domination.

The gathering was organized by Hizb ut-Tahrir, an international, pan-Islamist political organization dedicated to establishing a global caliphate. Founded in Jerusalem in 1953, the organization is banned in many countries.

Erdogan has also been suspected of aiding Hamas, allowing the terrorist organization to operate out of Turkey. The terrorist group is also reportedly in contact with the Turkish intelligence agency.

The key to the Turkish incursion into Libya and the hidden motivation is actually quite straightforward. Two months ago, Turkey signed a maritime borders deal that gave Turkey a claim to parts of the eastern Mediterranean. In addition to its strategic military importance, the eastern Mediterranean has huge natural gas deposits. Turkey’s entrance into the eastern Mediterranean puts it into close proximity with Israel and its offshore natural gas facilities.

Dr. Mordechai Kedar, a senior lecturer in the Department of Arabic at Bar-Ilan University, noted that Erdogan’s interest in Libya is really quite simple.

“The whole thing is about natural gas,” Dr. Kedar said. “The agreement between Turkey and Libya bypassed Syria, Lebanon, Israel, and Egypt. They related to the entire Mediterranean and the enormous natural gas deposits as if they belonged only to Libya and Turkey.”

“This could bring Israel into direct conflict with Turkey but since Israel is supplying vital gas to Europe, this also brings Turkey into conflict with Europe.”

“In order to make sure that the Libyan government stays and Turkey’s gas interests in the Mediterranean stay secure, Turkey is ramping up the hostilities in Libya in favor of the GNA.”

Dr. Kedar emphasized that Turkey’s interest in Libyan hostilities is, in essence, but not exclusively, financially motivated.

“But religion is big business,” he added. “Establishing a caliphate is certainly a big part of Erdogan’s agenda but to do that, he needs money and power. Taking over the gas in the Mediterranean will give him that.”

This aspect of the Libyan conflict concerning natural gas in the Mediterranean is of grave concern to international leaders, including U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Russian President Vladimir Putin, Turkish President Erdogan, French President Emmanuel Macron, Italian Premier Giuseppe Conte, and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, all of whom gathered in Berlin on Sunday to discuss the issue. Also in attendance were UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres along with senior representatives of the European Union, the African Union, and the Arab League.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10348

The Ottomans are back – what does that mean for Israel?

Tracing regional dynamics over the last century is vital to understanding the combustible situation today.

By SETH J. FRANTZMAN  

The Ottomans are back (photo credit: OMAR SANADIKI/REUTERS)

JANUARY 1, 2020 20:10

The Ottomans are back

In late November, Turkey set its sights on a new goal.

In Libya, a long-forgotten civil war was raging. The government in Tripoli, often called the Government of the National Accord, was losing ground to the Libyan National Army, led by a man named Khalifa Haftar, whose forces were based in eastern Libya.
Turkey supports Tripoli; Egypt supports Haftar. It is part of a much wider struggle that represents Turkey’s attempt to revive influence not seen since the end of the First World War. A century ago, the European powers thought that the Ottoman Empire could be easily chopped up and its territories given away.

Today Turkey is back, moving into areas like northern Iraq, northern Syria, Libya and even the Gulf and Somalia.

The Paris Peace Conference that ended in January 1920, 100 years ago, helped the stage for many of the issues still facing the Middle East. It is hard to remember now, but much of what we take for granted regarding the borders of the Middle East is in some ways arbitrary. They were decided on partly after World War I in a series of treaties, such as the Treaty of Sevres of 1920 and Treaty of Lausanne of 1923.

Why is Hatay province, once called Alexandretta, in Turkey, when it could have been in Syria? Why is Mosul in Iraq and not in Turkey, as Turkey once claimed it? Why do the Kurds lack a state? The recent tensions in the Middle East, the unresolved questions from Lebanon to Iraq, Libya, Turkey and Gaza, are all part of this.

LET US begin where Turkey now ends its recent ambitions – in Libya. Libya was once the setting for a quiet proxy war that reflects divisions in the Muslim world between the Muslim Brotherhood, which Turkey’s ruling party has roots in, and countries that oppose the Brotherhood.

Turkey’s ruler President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has increasingly global ambitions. Embattled Libya could be a key to them, thought Turkish leaders around Erdogan. Turkey was already sending drones and armored vehicles to Tripoli. But they had not stemmed the tide. Haftar vowed in November to take Tripoli and rid the country of “terrorists” and “militias.” Turkey responded that the “warlord” Haftar would have to be stopped.

But Turkey wanted something in return for helping to stop him. It wanted rights to the Mediterranean between Turkey and Libya.

If you draw a line from Libya to Turkey, you run into Greek islands like Crete. But if you draw a line from eastern Libya, there is a passage between Cyprus and the Greek islands that narrowly links Turkey to Libya. It is here that Turkey made a bold chess move. In exchange for sending some fighters to bolster the Tripoli government, Turkey would get an exclusive economic zone that splits Cyprus from Greece by sea and gives Turkey rights to explore for natural gas. It also sinks the dreams of Greece and Cyprus to invite companies like ENI to explore for natural resources under the sea.

The play by Turkey has muscle behind it. Ankara has been sending its navy out to conduct drills around Cyprus, showing the flag and its power. Turkey has new sea-based missiles. It is buying new drilling ships. Cyprus thought it was ahead of the curve, signing deals with Egypt in 2003, Lebanon in 2007 and Israel in 2010. But Turkey has thrown down a gauntlet.

One should understand Turkey’s treatment of the Greeks and Cypriots historically. Turkey invaded Cyprus in 1974 claiming to help protect members of the Turkish minority. Turkey has stayed ever since, recognizing Northern Cyprus as a country. No one else recognizes it, but Turkey says Northern Cyprus has widespread rights to explore for gas around Cyprus. Turkey has sent drones to Cyprus to show that it will police those waters it claims.

For Turkey, the Cyprus operation was a way to show it would not be removed from more islands in the Mediterranean – for instance, the Dodecanese Islands, near Rhodes, were taken by Italy during a war with the Ottoman Empire in 1912. Rhodes also was held by Italy, then by Germany during World War II, and finally became part of Greece in 1947. Turkey today says that these islands, even though they are part of Greece technically, cannot be used by Greece to determine its rights to the waters off the islands. Instead, the continental shelf that extends from Turkey gives Erdogan’s country rights to the sea.

TURKEY’S DECISION to revive its claims to the sea and send forces to Libya should be seen in light of a century of Turkey’s policies since the fall of the Ottoman Empire. The Ottomans lost Libya to the Italians in 1912. Now, the Turks are back.

Turkey has flirted with various policies since the end of the Ottomans. For a few years in the 1920s, it looked like the country would be dismantled. However, Turkey pushed the Greeks out of modern-day Turkey and embarked on a campaign of Turkish nationalism and secularism that supplanted European rule in Istanbul and created the current borders. But Ankara was never entirely satisfied. It felt that its formerly powerful role had been reduced.

During the Cold War, Turkey was an ally of the US and also suffered its own internal troubles and coups. At the time, Turkey’s neighbors seemed to be advancing. Syria under Hafez Assad, father of the current embattled president, was trying to be an Arab socialist paradise. Borrowing heavily from secular nationalist traditions of European fascism blended with socialism and Arab nationalism, the Assadist regime was brutal to dissenters, but treated loyalists decently. It wanted to modernize and look like an eastern European state, with the Communist-style brutalist high-rises and lots of Soviet tanks and other assorted accoutrements. It left to fester the questions that arose after 1920. For instance, what about the Kurds in eastern Syria? The Assadist Ba’athist regime treated them like they didn’t exist, suppressing them and denying many citizenship.

The Assad regime also ignored large Arab tribes along the Euphrates. Those tribes sometimes looked to Saddam’s Iraq across the border for cultural relations with other tribes in Anbar province. Saddam Hussein, like the Assads, was a product of the Arab nationalist revolutionary era. All these regimes, from Assad to Saddam to Nasser’s Egypt, were products of a reaction against the colonial era of the British and French mandates. They had replaced the old system of kings and colonials and sheikhs. They wanted modernity.

In some way, they were reactions also against the Jewish nationalism of Zionism, which they hated, and also the secular Turkish nationalism of Ataturk. If there were to be Jewish and Turkish states, so there would be an Arab nationalist group of states as well.
Iraq never worked out the problems the British colonials had saddled it with. The British wanted to include Mosul in Iraq so there would be more Sunni Arabs to support the Hashemite king they had chosen. The king was from what is now Saudi Arabia and a brother of the king of Jordan at the time. But for Iraq, he became the first Iraqi.

That didn’t mean much to Kurds in the north, who also wanted freedom and independence. It is sometimes forgotten that a brief independent Kurdish state called the Republic of Mahabad had arisen in 1946 after World War II. Like the changeover in power of Rhodes, or the question of whether Hatay would be part of Turkey, this republic was a byproduct of unresolved questions from the 1920s.

Kurds wanted freedom and rights. Instead, they were forced to be part of states that didn’t recognize or want them. They were told to be Arab nationalists or Turkish nationalists, not Kurds. For the colonial powers, this didn’t matter. For the nationalist regimes, they were a headache. For the US and Soviets in the Cold War, they were tools to be used and discarded.

This system that arose in the 1920s and then in the 1960s revolved around questionable states like Iraq, Syria and Lebanon. Egypt was an ancient state, but Damascus had its own ambitions. At one point, the Arab Revolt had sought to hold Damascus as part of a greater Arab state. The British and French said no to that. Instead, the Kingdom of Jordan became a Bedouin kingdom. The kingdoms that were created in the 20th century may have seemed weak at the outset, but they had more staying power than the nationalist regimes. Instead, the regimes – from Gaddafi in Libya to Saddam in Iraq and Ali Abdullah Saleh in Yemen – were overthrown. The Nassserist regime, too, fell apart in 2011 when the Arab Spring broke out. Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali of Tunisia was also forced out. So too the Algerian regime.

Why did some of the monarchies survive and not others? The British helped shepherd to power the kingdom of Egypt of Farouk. King Idris of Libya appeared a more formidable ruler, but he was pushed from office in 1969 while away for medical treatment in Turkey. The Gulf monarchies, by contrast, and the Moroccan and Jordanian monarchies, have survived. Likely because their states are either more homogenous or because of their traditions of rule, they have had more success.

THE PAST 10 years have witnessed an extraordinary reversal, as most of the Arab countries have been torn apart from within. Where monarchies or Arab nationalism failed, a rising religious extremism preyed on weak states. But even this Islamist terrorist rise did not supplant the new states.

ISIS came and went. Even the Muslim Brotherhood, briefly rising in Gaza and even in Tripoli or other areas, and seeking election in Tunisia, Jordan and other places, has not been the success that some thought. Political Islam is not winning.

What has happened is that the historically powerful periphery states, Turkey and Iran, have risen to grab influence throughout the Middle East. These states, as the Ottoman Empire and Persian Empire, were weakened in 1920 and European powers supplanted their historic role. But now, with Europe looking more insular, these countries are rising again.

Turkey’s expedition to Libya is just one symbol of that new world order in the Middle East.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10307

The 2020s Is Going To Be A Decade Of Intense Preparation For The Next Global Conflict

By Ted on January 3, 2020 in Featured, General

My thoughts on the 2020s and how it will be a decade of immense preparation for the next global conflict:

TURKEY’S MILITARY PLANS FOR THE 2020S

August of 2017 Erdogan declared in a speech:

“Just like [Turkey’s vision for] 2023 and 2053, we’ve also determined 2071 [marking the 1,000th anniversary of the Battle of Malazgirt] as a ‘horizon line’ … We are proud of our ancestors who walked with glory, honor and victory into the center of Europe after entering Anatolia from Malazgirt, with the red flag in one hand and the green sanjak in the other”

Kale Group, another Turkish defense company, is currently working with Rolls Royce to develop the TF-X, Turkey’s first independently made fighter jet. According to one report from Invest in Turkey:

“Rolls Royce, the British automotive and aviation giant, and Kale Group, one of Turkey’s prominent defense contractors, have announced the establishment of a joint venture.

Kale Group will own 51 percent and Rolls Royce 49 percent of the joint venture company, which will be known as the TAEC Aircraft Engine Industry Corporation. The agreement was signed on May 8, 2017, in Istanbul. TAEC will produce jet engines for both military and civilian purposes, with intellectual property rights to the engines remaining in Turkey.”

Kale Group announced that they are taking the lead on the TF-X National Fighter Jet project currently being developed by Turkish Aerospace Industries, Inc. (TAI). The TF-X will be Turkey’s first domestically designed and produced fighter jet and it is meant to replace the current fleet of F-16s in the early 2020s.”

In 2015, Erdogan, in a speech commemorating the Battle of Gallipoli — in which the Ottomans gained a major victory over the British in World War One — affirmed that “A nation without its own defense industry cannot fight the cause of liberation,” and he further added that by 2023 a Turkish made combat plane will “fly the Turkish skies”.

A Stratfor report from May of 2017 states that Turkey’s “goal is to achieve full self-sufficiency by 2023.”

TURKEY IS PLANNING ON HELPING TO REBUILD HUNGARY’S MILITARY

Peter E. Uhde talks about a military plan for Hungary that is set to be in full materialization by 2026:

“Zrínyi 2026” is the name of a ten-year defense and military development program. This includes a voluntary reserve system for territorial protection, ie homeland security.”

Hungary will be boosting its military capacity at a substantial level, and Turkey will be a major player in the upgrading of the Hungarian military. As we read in one report from Hungarian Spectrum:

“We know little about the conversation that took place between Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Viktor Orbán during the Turkish prime minister’s visit to Budapest a few days ago, but in the joint press conference Orbán talked about improving the Hungarian armed forces with Turkish participation. He explained that because of the poor economic conditions he faced in 2010, he was forced to curtail military spending, but now the Hungarian army is on track for a major upgrade. He intends for Turkey to play a major role in this endeavor. He added that Hungary is planning to embark on developing a robust armament industry with Turkish help.”

Orban also stressed that Turkey is essential for controlling illegal immigration in Europe and for strengthening Hungary’s military. As we read in a report from Hungary Today:

“Hungarian security and Turkish stability are directly linked, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said after talks with President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Budapest on Monday. “A stable Turkish government and a stable Turkey are a precondition for Hungary not to be endangered in any way due to overland migration,” Orbán said at a joint press conference after the talks.

THE BRITISH NAVY

Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon has unveiled an ambitious new National Shipbuilding Strategy which meets the challenge set by Sir John AParker last November and sets out plans for the first batch of Type 31e frigates. The first ships are set to be in service by 2023.

GERMANY WANTS THE 2020S TO BE A DECADE OF MILITARY TECHNOLOGY INNOVATION

An August 2019 report from Europaische SIcherheit & Technik:

As the core of the land forces, and as carriers of country operations it is important for the army to translate these ambitious goals in a plausible ability nursery. The turnout for the nursery VJTF Brigade have already been – here we are in 2019 in the year of implementation.

Planning it is now mainly depends on the ability to ensure national and Alliance Defense Division 2027th This article explores the question of what the army (yet) required for an operational division by the year 2027th For example, combat, deployment and management support are no longer available to the necessary degree. At the same time the army has to keep pace with technological developments. The trend toward rapid innovation and shorter product life cycles and the use of digital technologies will intensify in the coming years. New skills, innovation and flexibility is the army can open up only with a comprehensive digital strategy.

The formation of a complete, operational Division, including Division troops by 2027 requires timely removal of existing capacity deficits and reconstruction of lost and developing new skills.

A 2018 report from the European Organization of Military Associations and Trade Unions:

The minister of defense presented her plan of action for the modernization of the German Armed Forces, which grants more money for new material and personnel. According to the plan the main problems, which should be tackled are the modernization of existing structures and the definition of new tasks for the German Armed Forces. The new plan meets the claims of the DBwV made in its program “Powerful Bundeswehr 2025”.…

Equipment problems of the Bundeswehr should be history: A capability profile describes the way to modernize the small-scale armed forces. …  This will be achieved in three intermediate steps: 2023, 2027, 2031.

The Union’s defense policy spokesman, Henning Otte, said: “The plans assume that by 2023 we will have to move towards an annual financial requirement of around 60 billion euros.”

The CDU / CSU parliamentary group, Johann David Wadephul, argues: “The Bundeswehr must become more modern and it must grow again – that requires the security situation, which has been deteriorating for a long time.”

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10297

Newspaper Associated with Erdogan: US is ‘Great Satan’ Occupying World with Bases

By David Sidman December 30, 2019 , 3:03 pm

And he shall be a wild ass of a man: his hand shall be against every man, and every man’s hand against him; and he shall dwell in the face of all his brethren. Genesis 16:12 (The Israel Bible™)

A Dec. 26, 2019 article in the Turkish daily Yeni Akit, titled “There Is No Place Left That They Have Not Messed Up! The ‘Great Satan’ Is Occupying The World With Bases” read: “The U.S., which brings disasters to the places it sees with drunken shouts of ‘We are bringing humanity!’ and is turning the Middle East into a place of fire, has 800 military bases around the world.”

The article gives a list of the major U.S. military bases in the Middle East and elsewhere.

Yeni Akit is an avid supporter of the AKP and has close ties with President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

Turkish media have been discussing the U.S. bases in Turkey following Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s statement in a Dec. 15, 2019 interview that “if it needs to be shut down, we will shut down Incirlik [Airbase]. If it needs to be shut down, we will shut down Kürecik [Radar Station]” (see MEMRI TV Clip No. 7661 Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan: We Have the Authority to Shut Down U.S.-Run Airbase, Radar Station in Turkey; If Measures Such As Sanctions Are Taken Against Us, We Will Respond as Necessary, Dec. 15, 2019).

Following is the text of the Yeni Akit article:

‘There Are About 180,000 Military Personnel at These Bases, With 60,000 to 70,000 in the Middle East’

“In recent years, despite having bases covering regions including Iraq, Afghanistan, and Syria, the U.S. has approximately 800 bases around the world, some of which are small radar stations, others are the size of cities. Maintaining these bases costs $200 billion. According to data from the U.S. Department of Defense, the U.S. bases cost $749 billion in 2018.

“The U.S. bases include all U.S. military structures connected to the Department of Defense, from enemy observation points to naval supply points, from training bases to radar bases. There are about 180,000 military personnel at these bases, with 60,000 to 70,000 in the Middle East. These numbers become more important when it is understood that they are found primarily in 17 countries that have permanent bases, and approximately 70 countries in total.”

‘In the List of Countries With U.S. Bases, Turkey Comes Ninth With Nine Military Structures’

“It appears that the basic reason why the number of U.S. bases is so high is that the U.S. rarely abandons a base that it establishes in a country. The U.S.’s Ramstein base in Germany is an example of this. This base, which the U.S. established in 1949 after the Second World War, still serves the U.S. Air Force and, with 53,000 personnel, it is the U.S.’s largest base outside of its territory.

“Aside from Ramstein, the U.S. has 87 more bases in Germany. Germany is also the country, aside from the U.S., that has the most U.S. bases. After Germany comes Japan with 86, South Korea with 64, Italy with 29, and the United Kingdom with 16. In the list of countries with U.S. bases, Turkey comes ninth with nine military structures. Incirlik Airbase is the largest and most well-known military structure in Turkey. There are about 2,500 personnel and units belonging to the U.S. Air Force at the base, which was established in the 1950s after Turkey joined NATO.”

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10288

Erdogan says Turkey will increase military support to Libya if necessary

Tuvan Gumrukcu

ANKARA (Reuters) – Turkey will increase its military support to the internationally recognized government of Libya if necessary and will evaluate ground, air and marine options, President Tayyip Erdogan said on Sunday, after the two signed a military cooperation accord last month.

Turkey backs Fayez al-Serraj’s Government of National Accord (GNA) in Libya, which has been torn by factional conflict since 2011, and has already sent military supplies to the GNA despite a United Nations arms embargo, according to a report by U.N. experts seen by Reuters last month.

Turkey has also said it could deploy troops to Libya if the GNA makes such a request. The GNA has been fighting a months-long offensive by Khalifa Haftar’s forces based in the east of the country. Haftar’s forces have received support from Russia, Egypt, Jordan and the United Arab Emirates.

Speaking in the northern province of Kocaeli, Erdogan said Turkey had recently provided “very serious” support to the GNA, adding Libya was a country Turkey would support “with its life”.

“They are supporting an illegal warlord, who is the pawn of certain nations, instead of the U.N.-recognized government,” Erdogan said, in an apparent reference to Haftar and the countries which support him.

“If necessary, we will increase the military aspect of our support to Libya, and evaluate all our options, from the ground, air and sea,” he said.

Speaking before Erdogan, Defence Minister Hulusi Akar said Turkey will stand by Libya’s government until peace, stability and security are established in the country.

MARITIME ACCORD

Last month, Turkey and the GNA signed an accord to boost military cooperation and a separate deal on maritime boundaries, which has enraged Greece. Ankara and Athens have been at odds over hydrocarbon resources off the coast of the divided island of Cyprus.

While Greece has said the accord violates international law, Turkey has rejected those accusations, saying it aims to protect its rights in the eastern Mediterranean. On Sunday, Erdogan said Turkey will “absolutely” not turn back from its agreements with Libya.

“Nobody should come to us with attempts to exclude us, trap us in our own shores or steal our economic interests,” Erdogan said. “We have no intention of starting conflicts with anyone for no reason, or robbing anyone of their rights,” he said.

“Those who oppose us have no sense of rights, law, justice, ethics or mercy,” Erdogan said, referring to Greece, Israel and Egypt, who have opposed the maritime accord.

In an interview with Greek daily To Vima on Sunday, Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said the accord with Libya was in line with international law, adding Ankara may consider granting exploration licenses in areas determined by Turkey and Libya.

“It would be the exercise of our sovereign rights in our continental shelf in the region,” Cavusoglu said. “The exercise of our sovereign rights also and naturally includes our right to deploy research vessels in the area,” he was cited as saying.

In a first reaction from the United States on the agreement, a senior State Department official said the maritime accord was “unhelpful” and “provocative”.

Responding to those comments, Turkey’s Communications Director Fahrettin Altun said on Sunday the United States refused to understand Turkey’s legitimate security concerns.

“It is neither ‘provocative’ nor ‘unconstructive’ as some US officials are claiming,” Altun said on Twitter. “Those who dare criticize Turkey should take a look at years of provocative actions by Greece and other regional states. We will never accept a fait accompli over our maritime borders!” he added.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10279

Greece says huge gas pipeline deal with Israel, Cyprus to be signed January 2

Burgeoning alliance comes as Turkey attempts to lay claim to eastern Mediterranean energy reserves

By AFP 22 December 2019, 10:07 pm

ATHENS, Greece — The Greek government said Sunday that it will sign an agreement for a huge pipeline project with Cyprus and Israel next month that is designed to ship gas from the eastern Mediterranean to Europe.

The move comes amid tensions with Turkey over its own activities in the area and a contentious maritime deal with Libya, expanding Ankara’s claims over a large gas-rich area of the sea.

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis’s office said the agreement for the EastMed pipeline would be signed in Athens on January 2 with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades.

The 2,000-kilometer (1,200-mile) pipeline will be able to transfer between nine and 12 billion cubic meters a year from offshore gas reserves between Israel and Cyprus to Greece, and then on to Italy and other southeastern European countries.

The discovery of hydrocarbon reserves in the eastern Mediterranean has sparked a scramble for the energy riches and a dispute between Cyprus and Turkey, which has occupied the north of the Mediterranean island since 1974.

The drilling vessel Fatih, which was deployed by Turkey to search for gas and oil in waters considered part of the EU state’s exclusive economic zone, in the Mediterranean Sea, off Cyprus, June 24, 2019. (AFP)

Turkey already faces European Union sanctions over ships searching for oil and gas off Cyprus, whose internationally recognized government in Nicosia is not recognized by Ankara.

The EastMed project is expected to make Cyprus, Greece and Israel key links in Europe’s energy supply chain and aims to stymie Turkey’s effort to extend its control to the eastern Mediterranean.

“It is really important that the countries showed they can react quickly against Turkey’s provocative stance,” Greek government spokesman Stelios Petsas said.

Greece responded angrily to the Turkey-Libya deal, expelling the Libyan ambassador and urging the UN to condemn it.

Part of the deal sets a maritime boundary between the two countries, which Greece says fails to take into account the island of Crete.

https://static.timesofisrael.com/www/uploads/2019/12/WhatsApp-Image-2019-12-02-at-12.58.57-1-e1575284643994-640x400.jpeg

The Leviathan natural gas platform off the shore of Israel. (Albatross)

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said earlier this month that he envisaged joint energy exploration activities with Libya in the eastern Mediterranean.

Turkey already has ships searching for oil and gas off Cyprus, and says the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus — recognized only by Ankara — has the right to explore around the entire island.

“The EastMed pipeline agreement will go forward despite what Erdogan says,” Greek Energy and Environment Minister Kostis Hatzidakis said Sunday.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10276

Egyptian tanks sent to Libya to thwart Turkish intervention in battle for Tripoli

Dec 20, 2019 @ 13:04 Egypt vs Turkey in Libya

A consignment of Egyptian T-72 tanks and APCs arrived in Libya on Thursday, Dec. 19, to bolster Gen. Khalifa Haftar’s Libyan National Army (LNA), which had just broken through to the southern outskirts of Tripoli. This consignment was personally ordered by Egyptian President Abdel-Fatteh El-Sisi, DEBKAfile’s military and intelligence sources reveal, along with instructions to a number of Egyptian air force squadrons to stand ready to support Haftar’s push to take the capital from the UN-recognized Government of National Accord.

El-Sisi took those steps in response to the Erdogan government’s reported plan to send over a volunteer force from the Turkish Muslim Brotherhood (SADAT) to help the GNA resist Haftar’s push into Tripoli. SADAT consists of former Al Qaeda and ISIS jihadists recruited in Syria by the Turkish MIT intelligence agency. Our sources add that a number of Hamas activists hosted by Turkey have trained with these units.
It was in reference to this Turkish intervention in the Tripoli battle that El-Sisi declared this week: “The Libyan government has been held hostage by terrorist militias in the capital, Tripoli.”

This week, the Libyan Muslim Brotherhood convinced the Tripoli government to formally apply to Ankara for military assistance to repel the Haftar advance.

Turkish military aid to the GNA thus far consists of 3,000 army “advisers” and a steady supply of weapons systems, including anti-tank rockets and drones.

Haftar’s army is solidly backed by Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Russia. The Egyptians provide intelligence, weapons and ammo; the Russians have deployed thousands of mercenaries, most from the Wagner Group contractors, some transferred from Syria to Libya; and the UAE recently supplied the Haftar force with a small squadron of six US-made Archangel ISR planes. These aircraft usually provide  police forces on the ground with surveillance and back-up fire. The Haftar army has turned them into bombers.
If Turkey goes through with its plan to deploy Muslim Brotherhood volunteers to Libya, The Egyptian air force will go into action for a showdown against Turkish intervention.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10272

Turkey: Erdogan’s Campaign against the West

by Giulio Meotti
November 9, 2019 at 5:00 am

“Europe is a cultural continent, not a geographical one… It is its culture that gives it a common identity. The roots that have formed it, that have permitted the formation of this continent, are those of Christianity. […] In this sense, throughout history Turkey has always represented another continent, in permanent contrast with Europe. There were the wars against the Byzantine empire, the fall of Constantinople, the Balkan wars, and the threat against Vienna and Austria. That is why I think it would be an error to equate the two continents.” — Pope Benedict XVI, Le Figaro Magazine, 2007.• In Germany, Turkey controls 900 mosques out of a total of 2,400. These Islamic centers not only serve members of the Turkish diaspora, but also stop them from assimilating into German society. Speaking with Turks in Germany, Erdogan urged them not to assimilate, and called the assimilation of migrants in Europe “a crime against humanity.”• Erdogan has also been expanding Turkey beyond its borders – starting with Cyprus, the Greek Islands, Suakin Island (Sudan) and Syria.• Mosques, migrants and the military are now Erdogan’s new weapons in his threats against the West.

Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan “has earned the title of Caliph” according to Turkish journalist Abdurrahman Dilipak.

Erdogan is the head of NATO’s second-largest army; he has spies throughout Europe through a network of mosques, associations and cultural centers; he has brought his country to the top of the world rankings for the number of imprisoned journalists and has shut the mouth of German comedians with the threat of legal action. By keeping migrants in Turkish refugee camps, he controls immigration to Europe.

The worse Erdogan behaves, the greater his weight in Europe. In a 2015 meeting, Erdogan reportedly was “openly mocking” European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and other “senior European leaders”, as Juncker asked Erdogan to consider how he was treated “like a prince” at a Brussels summit.

According to George Friedman:

“Turkey now is the 17th largest economy in the world, it is larger than Saudi Arabia, it has an army and military capability that is probably the best in Europe, besides the UK and they could beat the Germans in an afternoon and the French in an hour if they showed up.”

Turkey’s 2018 military budget increased to $19 billion, 24% higher than 2017, according to a report by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute. Erdogan has placed Turkey’s military — once a bastion of Turkish nationalism and secularism — under his political authority. While Europe is pacifist and refuses to invest in its own security or, like Germany, support NATO’s budget, Turkey is belligerent.

Ever since his Justice and Development Party (AKP) became Turkey’s dominant political force in 2002, for Erdogan, elevating the public role of Islam has been more than a slogan. At public gatherings, the Turkish president has made the “rabia“, a hand gesture of four fingers raised and the thumb hidden, to protest the overthrow of Egypt’s Islamist then President Mohamed Morsi by Egypt’s military. Erdogan evidently sees himself as a global Islamic leader with national elections to win. Through four million Turkish Muslims in Germany and vast communities in the Netherlands, France, Austria and beyond, Erdogan does indeed have enormous influence in Europe.

As a leader of the Ummah [Islamic community], Erdogan challenged the leader of Christianity. In 2006, Pope Benedict XVI delivered a famous lecture at Germany’s University of Regensburg, where he diagnosed Islam as inherently flawed. During his address, the Pope quoted a 14thCentury Christian emperor:

“Show me just what Muhammad brought that was new and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached”.

The Muslim world erupted in anger. In an apology tour of Erdogan’s Turkey, Benedict XVI reversed his firm position of just two years before and supported Turkey’s joining the European Union. The year before becoming Pope, then-Cardinal Ratzinger had said that Turkey should never join the European Union. “Europe is a cultural continent, not a geographical one,” Ratzinger said to Le Figaro.

“It is its culture that gives it a common identity. The roots that have formed it, that have permitted the formation of this continent, are those of Christianity. […] In this sense, throughout history Turkey has always represented another continent, in permanent contrast with Europe. There were the wars against the Byzantine empire, the fall of Constantinople, the Balkan wars, and the threat against Vienna and Austria. That is why I think it would be an error to equate the two continents.”

Ratzinger said the something similar in another instance, that “Turkey in Europe is a mistake”:

“The European continent has its own Christian soul and Turkey, which is not the Ottoman Empire in its extension but still constitutes its central core, has another soul, naturally to be respected”.

Both Benedict and Erdogan understood that Islamic Turkey has been the nemesis of Christian Europe — from October 7, 1571, when Europe inflicted a catastrophic defeat on the Ottomans at the Battle of Lepanto, until September 12, 1683, when Europe again defeated the Turks at the outskirts of Vienna, the city they had historically tried to capture as a base for the conquest of the rest of Europe.

It was in the half-century that followed the fall of Constantinople in 1453 — the great Eastern Christian center, whose collapse marked the end of the Byzantine Empire — that Christian Europe started to expel the Ottoman Turks from the continent. Now it seems as if Erdogan, by other means, is trying to pursue a historic Turkish revenge on Europe. Erdogan is seemingly using this ideology of conquest to cement his internal and external power.

Erdogan’s most powerful tool in his relations with Europe has been migrants. “You cried out when 50,000 refugees were at the Kapikule border”, Erdogan said in 2016, referring to the border with Bulgaria. “You started asking what you would do if Turkey would open the gates. Look at me — if you go further, those border gates will be open. You should know that”.

Last month, during his military operation against the Kurds, Erdogan repeated the same threat:

“Hey EU, wake up. I say it again: if you try to frame our operation there as an invasion, our task is simple: we will open the doors and send 3.6 million migrants to you.”

Europe, unable to control its own borders, is stalling.

Since he came to power, Erdogan, in a building spree, has reportedly built 17,000 mosques (one fifth of Turkey’s total). The largest is located in Camlica, the Asian shore of Istanbul. From Mali to Moscow, by way of Cambridge and Amsterdam, Erdogan is ceaselessly active in “diplomatizing” his religion. The “biggest mosque in the Balkans” is Turkish and is located in Tirana, Albania. “The largest in West Africa” was built by Erdogan in Accra, Ghana. “The largest in Central Asia” he built in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. The “largest mosque in Europe” will be his new Turkish mosque in Strasbourg. He is planning to open Turkish schools in France.

Erdogan has empowered Turkey’s Directorate of Religious Affairs (Diyanet), which now has 120,000 employees and a budget the size of twelve other ministries combined. In 2004, with 72,000 employees, the Diyanet was about half that size. This is the religious network with which Erdogan has a foot in European affairs.

In Germany, Turkey controls 900 mosques out of a total of 2,400. These Islamic centers not only serve members of the Turkish diaspora, but also stop them from assimilating into German society. Speaking with Turks in Germany, Erdogan urged them not to assimilate, and called the assimilation of migrants in Europe “a crime against humanity“. He apparently wants them to remain part of Turkey and the Ummah, the global Muslim community.

Last year, Austrian authorities announced the closure of several Turkish-controlled mosques after “children in a Turkish-financed mosque re-enacting the first world war battle of Gallipoli.” According to The Guardian:

As many as 60 Turkish imams and their families face expulsion from Austria and seven mosques are due to be closed under a clampdown on what the government has called “political Islam”.

Austria’s chancellor, Sebastian Kurz, said the country could no longer put up with “parallel societies, political Islam and radicalisation,” which he said had “no place in our country”.

Erdogan, however, knows that against Europe, numbers are on his side. “Make not three, but five children. Because you are the future of Europe,” Erdogan told the Turkish diaspora. Eurostat, the official statistics agency of the European Union, shows that in terms of birthrates, Turkey is ahead of Europe. In one year in Turkey, more than 1.2 million children were born, while only 5.07 million children were born in all of the EU’s 28 member states. What would Europe look like if 80 million Turks joined the EU?

Already in 1994, when Erdogan was campaigning to become the mayor of Istanbul, he talked about “the second conquest of Istanbul“. (The first conquest was the defeat of Christian Constantinople in 1453.) According to the exiled Turkish novelist Nedim Gürsel, Erdogan, when he was mayor of Istanbul, took it upon himself to commemorate the Turkish conquest of Constantinople. “Celebrating a conquest that took place more than five centuries ago may seem anachronistic, I would even say absurd, to European leaders”, Gürsel writes. “For Erdogan, the capture of Constantinople is another pretext for challenging the West and giving back to its people its repressed pride”. Last January, Erdogan chose the tomb of an Ottoman forebear to pledge a victory over Syria.

“You will not turn Istanbul into Constantinople”, Erdogan said after the Christchurch massacre. Erdogan is obsessed with history and takes it far more seriously than Europeans do. “We will change Hagia Sophia’s name from a museum to a mosque”, Erdogan said earlier this year. The Hagia Sophia, built by the Byzantine Emperor Justinian I in AD 537, was for 900 years the greatest cathedral in Christendom – until 1453 when the Ottoman Empire defeated the Byzantines and took over Constantinople; then it became one of Islam’s greatest mosques. In 1935, President Mustafa Kemal Ataturk turned it into a museum; Erdogan has pledged to turn it back into a mosque, and recited a Muslim prayer in the formerly Christian site.

Erdogan has also been expanding Turkey beyond its borders – starting with Cyprus, the Greek IslandsSuakin Island (Sudan) and Syria. “We are a big family of 300 million people from the Adriatic to the Great Wall of China”, Erdogan said in a recent speech from Moldova. The borders of Turkey, he stated in Izmir, span “from Vienna to the shores of the Adriatic Sea, from East Turkistan (China’s autonomous region of Xinjiang) to the Black Sea”.

To expand his country’s influence, Erdogan is also using Turkey’s military. “Not since the days of the Ottoman Empire has the Turkish military had such an extensive global footprint”, the journalist Selcan Hacaoglu reports. The Turkish-American political scientist Soner Cagaptaytitled his new book, Erdogan’s Empire.

Mosques, migrants and the military are now Erdogan’s new weapons in his campaign against the West.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10191

Is this altar in Europe the portal for Satan?

Exclusive: Scott Lively believes several Antichrists have come and gone through history

By Scott Lively
Published November 4, 2019 at 6:58pm

Years ago I spoke at a Bible conference in Bournemouth, England, which opened numerous doors to missionary adventures for me. One was an area of personal study and travel that greatly expanded my understanding of how Satan and the demonic realm accesses and operates in the physical world. That door was opened during a break in the conference when one of my hosts played “The Rape of Europe,” a documentary by British evangelist David Hathaway. The title frames the Greek myth of the rape of Europa by Zeus as a metaphor for the cultural rape of Europe by Islam. That myth, depicted on the euro currency, features Zeus/Satan in the form of a bull with crescent shaped horns being ridden by a woman, Europa.

The Rape of Europe (2002) is a work of compelling scholarship, carefully documenting the demonic origins of the European Union, framed as the fulfillment of Bible prophecy. Released before the Soros Open Borders agenda became overt globalist policy, it is also prophetic of today’s geopolitical realities.

The film includes commentary about the two primary exhibits of Berlin’s Pergamum Museum. The first is the Pergamum Altar, called Satan’s Seat in Revelation 2:13. The second is Babylon’s Ishtar Gate, historically called the “Gate to Hell” because it is decorated with 337 images of Marduk, the serpent god: 337 being symbolic of Sheol (hell) in Hebrew numerology. In demonology, Marduk (aka Bel, aka Baal, aka Zeus) is Satan, and Ishtar (aka Astarte, aka Ashteroth, aka Europa) is Satan’s female consort.

Significantly, these two enormous exhibits are not replicas but the originals. The Seat of Satan was shipped in pieces from Turkey to Germany starting in the 1880s, and the Ishtar Gate starting in 1913. In 1902 Kaiser (Caesar) Wilhelm II, last king of the Holy Roman Empire’s Second Reich, publicly celebrated the reconstruction of the Pergamum Altar in Berlin as his highest achievement.

Hathaway argues persuasively that Catholic Germany, or more specifically it’s political creation called the European Union (established through the Treaty of Rome), is the reemergent Roman Empire predicted in the “four kingdoms” prophecy of Daniel 2. Few Christians today realize that Adolf Hitler’s “Third Reich” was the third iteration of the Holy Roman Empire in Europe. Nor is it widely known that the plans for the EU were originally drawn up by Hitler.

Hathaway also heavily implied that the two artifacts in Berlin played a controlling role in German’s emergence as the center of evil in the world, typified by the two German-driven world wars and the Holocaust. I determined to test this theory for myself.

I began by assuming the Bible asserts a literal truth in Revelation 2:13 that Satan dwelt in Pergamum and this altar was his seat. I questioned first whether it was actually a portal allowing demonic access to the physical world, and if so whether its range of influence was defined by the territory under the de facto legal control (ownership) of the nation in possession of it. I then questioned whether other portals existed and whether their influence could be clearly recognized.

The Pergamum Altar was built by King Eumenes II of Pergamos, roughly upon the death of Antiochus IV Epiphanes in 164 B.C. Antiochus is literally the Antichrist figure of the Book of Daniel, whose wickedness is extensively chronicled in the apocryphal books of 1 and 2 Maccabees. Eumenes II was his political patron and military ally who helped Antiochus forcibly take the throne of the Greek Selucid Empire. The capital of the Selucid Empire was “Babylon,” which means “Gateway of the gods,” a name I now believe was literally true.

King Eumenes II appears to have built the Seat of Satan as a portal through which Satan could return to possess a replacement human host. That hypothesis in turn suggests there have been a long series of “Antichrists” through human history – both preceding and succeeding Antiochus. I now use the term “Antichrist” as the designation for any human being in physical possession of the demon Satan, and realize that he seeks always to be in possession of someone: choosing whomever can best serve his agenda at any given time. Importantly, while the Bible teaches that angels can take human form, all demons – even their king – must possess a human or animal to operate in the physical realm.

I have identified a great number of men who clearly fit both the character profile and the timeline of Antichrist succession, starting with Bible history in Scripture, but continuing through secular history to the present. Every one from 164 B.C. to the end of the third century A.D., and from its excavation in the late 1800s to the present, can be tied to the Pergamum Altar.

Most disturbing to me is the timeline from 1945 to 1961 when the United States had de facto ownership of the Seat of Satan as the dominant power of the Allied occupation of Germany until the Berlin Wall went up (which gave ownership to the Soviet Union until German reunification in 1990). That 1945-61 window is precisely when America was shifted by our Supreme Court under the control of anti-Christian Justice Hugo Black from a biblical to a humanist foundation, and an army of freshly legally empowered militant atheists began systematically dismantling our Judeo-Christian infrastructure from coast to coast.

In the course of my worldwide investigations I was privileged to receive a personal tour of the Pergamum Museum by Col. Eugene Bird, former commandant of Spandau Prison (housing the Nazi war criminals convicted at Nuremberg) who was also the American military designee who officiated the transition of power over East Berlin to the Soviets. Interestingly, given the Islamic connection of this article, our departure from the museum was halted by armed security to make way for Pervez Musharef, prime minister of Pakistan, who passed closely by us on the walkway to the main entrance.

That’s all I can fit in this column, but if you want more I can send you a sample of my book-in-progress, “The Dynasty of Darkness,” by request.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10179

Was Göbeklitepe An Ancient Temple of Sacrifice?

Göbeklitepe, the world’s oldest  temple, is around 12,000 years old. It was built by hunter-gatherers in the pre-pottery  Neolithic period, before writing and the wheel were invented. Göbeklitepe has rewritten the history of human civilization.

Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in July 2018, the site began to attract travelers and history enthusiasts from all over the world. The Turkish Ministry of Tourism and Culture designated 2019 as the Year of Göbeklitepe with over a million visitors expected.

As such,  Göbeklitepe is the most important archaeological site in the world. It is a small hill on the horizon, 9.5 miles (15 kilometers) northwest of the town of Urfa in Southern Anatolia. Called “the town of prophets” Urfa has been linked with the biblical  Abraham (some claim that Urfa was the town of Ur mentioned in the Bible) and was known to have hosted the Holy Mandylion.

Once also known as  Edessa, Urfa is on the edge of the rainy area of the  Taurus Mountains , source of the river that runs through the town and joins the Euphrates. Urfa was (and still is) an oasis, which could explain why Göbeklitepe was built nearby.

A life-sized  limestone statue  found in Urfa, at the pond known as Balikli Göl, has been carbon-dated to 10,000 – 9,000 BC, making it the earliest known stone sculpture ever found. Its eyes are made of  obsidian.

Some believe that  Göbeklitepe was a major step in the evolution of religion and the human connection with God – that it marks the beginning of civilization and might be the root of the world’s three great monotheistic religions. Göbeklitepe is a vast collection of stone structures built by Stone Age  hunter-gatherers. Construction started about 12 millennia ago and continued for approximately 2,000 years.

T-Shaped Pillars Symbolizing Humans Found at Göbeklitepe

A typical structure consists of a circle of standing pillars built from stones up to 20 feet (6.1 meters) tall. These pillars each weighed as much as 20 tons (9.1 quintals) and each was carved out of a solid block of granite. They were pried out and moved a few hundred feet using only wooden levers.

The pillars were then erected vertically into a base that had been carved into the bedrock. Some researchers estimate this would have required many clans to come together – perhaps 500 people at a time – to both build and feed the builders.

Each circle is about 30 feet (9.1 meters) in diameter. One circle has 12 stones spaced around its perimeter and two stones in the middle. Only a few of these circles have been excavated so far and the site is already massive. Every circle has two massive T-shaped pillars at the center of the circle.

The T-shaped pillars at Göbeklitepe. ( muratart / Adobe Stock)

Piled up stones serve as a wall to make this circle an enclosure. Smaller pillars surround the area. Some think these T-shaped pillars once held up a thatched roof or other material; others believe they  symbolize humans. This is what I also believe that the builders of Göbeklitepe wanted to attract the  attention of the gods , above the stars, in order to interact with them.

Most of the pillar carvings are of animals. But there are also the ones that are anthropomorphic or in the shape of a human. This was a project similar to building the pyramids of Egypt. But building with  stones that weigh tons began here in Göbeklitepe, long before Egypt or  England with Stonehenge.

What Was the Reason Beyond…

Why was this huge project built?

One thing is clear to the excavators — this site was not a place to live. There is no sign of food storage or farming and it has no evident purpose. Its mission must purely be a religious one. It has been declared the oldest known structure built as a temple.

My point of view for the mysterious Göbeklitepe, which harbors many secrets, is as follows:

One of the most important changes in the history of humanity was taking place in the area between the rivers Euphrates and Tigris about 12,000 years ago. Humankind was just beginning to move from the forager lifestyle to a settled way of living – from hunting and gathering to farming and production.

This transition period took maybe a few centuries or even a millennium. Initially they witnessed a seed from a fruit turning into a crop, emerging from the earth and blooming as a process of rebirth! This might have been the reason for them to start burying their dead and hoping for a rebirth in due time.

Various types of gods with supernatural powers were interrupting their daily life with climate changes and natural disasters. And there was one thing they were sure of: that they must please the gods, behaving as the gods wished them to behave.

In order to save the lives of their loved ones – to see their deceased family members re-born – and in order to start  farming, men believed that they must come to terms with all gods.

They thought that they needed the approval of supernatural powers to shift to a settled life and start farming. When would it rain, when would it storm or hail, or turn everything upside down with earthquakes? Would the sun god, moon god, or other gods, which seemed sometimes to punish men and make them afraid, allow them to farm, to cultivate and harvest?

Seeking the Permission of Gods for Farming

Men tried to placate the gods to avoid their anger and to keep them satisfied. As the gods punished them with  natural disasters , taking many lives when they became angry, men sought a way to mollify the gods, killing some of their own to ward off the gods’ rage, thinking that the gods were satisfied when these people or animals were  sacrificed.

Did they need to obtain the gods’ permission for farming when moving toward permanent settlements? Would they be able to satisfy the gods and harvest the crops if they sacrificed animals and humans – the youngest and most beautiful ones – in rituals and ceremonies?

Perhaps the temples of Göbeklitepe were temples for sacrificial rituals that were created as a result of these ideas! Who knows, maybe this was really so…

Maybe the animal and human bones, catching our eyes among the finds, and beer or wine jugs – possibly used in rituals – do tell us about this, who knows? Whatever the truth, Göbeklitepe temples, whose secrets have not yet been completely discovered, are rewriting the history of humanity.

Ancient site of Göbeklitepe in Turkey, the oldest temple in the world. (Teomancimit /  CC BY-SA 3.0 )

Bribing the Gods!

Human sacrifice was practiced by many ancient cultures. People would be ritually killed in a manner that was supposed to please or appease a god or spirit. Droughts, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, etc. were seen as a sign of anger or displeasure by deities, and sacrifices were supposed to lessen the divine ire.

The people of those prehistoric times, who wanted to start a settled life with farming, believed they had to ask for the gods’ permission by sacrificing some of their loved ones. Sacrifice meant that man made a gift to the gods and expected a gift in return. They cut off human heads, defleshed and cleaned the skulls, and hung them at an angle to face the gods.

They wanted the gods to see the huge, human-like pillars first, then the sacrificed humans, especially the young and beautiful ones – and thus be appeased, granting permission for settlement and farming under decent natural conditions, no storm or hail but abundant rain and sunshine… Elucidating what the gods wanted was the secret.

Human sacrifice is not just a ritual act designed to pacify the gods, divine the future, or bring luck and prosperity to those offering the sacrifice. Human sacrifice requires the exchange of a life – willingly or not – in return for supernatural assistance or for a greater cause. And at these temples other, inanimate offerings were also made.

A remarkable find was a limestone statue, referred to as the ‘gift bearer’, a kneeling figure carrying a human head in its hands, the eyes and nose of which are discernible.

Building D pillar. Image of the ‘Gift Bearer’ at Göbeklitepe. (Image: German Archaelogical Institute – DAI / Author Provided)

Many Bones But No Burials at Göbeklitepe

A considerable number of fragmented human bones have been recovered but the evidence of human burials is absent from Göbeklitepe. One explanation is that this particular variation of decapitation and skull modification was connected to activities specific to the Göbeklitepe site.

It is the oldest site where carved skulls have been found and fragments of three modified human  skulls have recently been discovered at Göbeklitepe. Skull carvings are the result of multiple cutting actions, not related to defleshing or scalping, as  defleshing must be accompanied by other types of cutting marks on the skulls, and scalping can be ruled out on the basis of the absence of typical markers.

All skulls found at the site carry  intentional deep incisions along their sagittal axes. In one of these cases, a drilled perforation is also attested. These findings are outstanding because they provide the very first osteological evidence of sacrificial ritual.

Because no signs of healing could be detected, modifications were probably performed shortly after death, which is a robust clue for us to believe that sacrifice was the case. Skulls were carved no earlier than the perimortem stage; this observation is confirmed by microscopic analyses: cut marks are characterized by sharp edges, meaning that the bone was cut when still elastic, that is, at an early state of decay.

Another outstanding feature of one of the skulls found is the drilled perforation in the left parietal, the position of which was carefully chosen so that the skull might hang vertically and face forward, looking at the gods, when suspended. Drilled perforation at the top of the cranium is used to suspend the skull with a cord. Carvings were used for stabilization purposes, preventing the cord from slipping.

One of the 3 skulls found belonged to an individual, 25 to 40 years of age, who was more likely female than male. These pieces of evidence have culminated in the interpretation of Göbeklitepe as a sacrificial ritual center of early hunter-gatherer groups living around Southeast Anatolia.

The people who gathered at these temples were not permanently living in that area and they wanted the temples to stay safe until their next visit. It has been discovered that these temples were hidden by the builders under soil, to protect them until the next sacrificial ceremony – maybe till the next harvest season!

According to a recent study the ancestors of the people who built Stonehenge traveled west across the Mediterranean before reaching Britain. Researchers in London compared DNA extracted from Neolithic human remains found in Britain with that of people alive at the same time in Europe.

The Neolithic inhabitants appear to have traveled from Anatolia (modern  Turkey) to Iberia before winding their way north. Maybe the recently discovered  Dolmen de Guadalperal  ( so called the Spanish Stonehenge) at the Valdecanas Reservoir in Spain – which is also believed to be a place where religious rituals were performed – is another example that had been created by the people that traveled from Göbeklitepe to  Stonehenge.

They reached Britain in about 4,000 BC. Pieces of human bones in soil from niches behind the stone pillars at the site, like those discovered in Göbeklitepe, and the vast amount of animal bone discovered at the site, suggest that ritual sacrifice regularly took place here.

There is perhaps a parallel here with the much later site at Durrington Walls, close to Stonehenge, in Wiltshire, England. Dating to around 2,600 BC, Durrington Walls was a huge ritual timber circle where enormous amounts of animal bone, primarily from pigs and cattle, were discovered.

So, maybe all these temples were the sites of sacrifices to please the gods and seek their permission… and this was how mankind was trying to move from ‘hunting and gathering’ to ‘farming and production’.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10160