Category: Islam

May 14

Russia & Turkey: Magog and Gog

Game-changing Russian missiles ‘already in Syria’ – Aaron Klein – http://www.wnd.com/2013/05/game-changing-russian-missiles-already-in-syria/?cat_orig=world

Obama aware, disappointed in support of regime

A Russian convoy of game-changing S300 missile batteries reached Syria last week, claimed Arab intelligence sources speaking to WND.

Israeli security sources said there is no information to support the Arab claim.

The information comes as the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times reported Israel relayed a message to the Obama administration describing as imminent a Russian deal to sell the advanced anti-aircraft missile systems to Syria.

The S300 missile batteries are able to intercept manned aircraft and guided missiles.

White House spokesman Jay Carney told reporters aboard Air Force One en route to Texas the administration is aware of the reports and is disappointed in Russia’s continued support of the Syrian regime.

“We have consistently called on Russia to cut off the Assad regime’s supply of Russian weapons including air defense systems that are destabilizing to the region,” Carney said. “We have also long said that Russia could play a more constructive role in Syria.”

According to the Journal report, Syria has been making payments on a 2010 agreement with Russia to purchase four batteries for $900 million with delivery expected within three months.

The Journal reported the S300 package included six launchers and 144 operational missiles each with a range of up to 200 miles.

Russia staffs Mediterranean fleet – Turkey weighs payback for Syrian bombingshttp://www.debka.com/article/22965/Russia-staffs-Mediterranean-fleet-Turkey-weighs-payback-for-Syrian-bombings

Russian Navy Admiral Viktor Chirkov said Sunday, May 12, that the process is underway for creating a permanent staff to run Russian fleet operations in the Mediterranean Sea. Speaking at Sevastopol, the Black Sea fleet’s home port, Adm. Chirkov said a staff of 20 officers was already in place. And the Mediterranean deployment would comprise five to six warships and their service vessels as well possibly as nuclear submarines which, say our military sources, are armed with nuclear ballistic missiles.

debkafile’s military sources: The new permanent deployment is the next Russian step for safeguarding Bashar Assad’s regime in Damascus and deterring military attacks on his Hezbollah allies and Iranian interests in their three-way bloc.

Moscow is also announcing loud and clear that Russia is finally restoring its military presence to the Middle East in 2013 after the last Soviet squadron exited the Mediterranean in 1992.

The Russian naval step came 24 hours after two car bombs reduced to rubble the center of the Turkish town of Reyhanli near the Syrian border, killing 46 people and injuring scores. Turkish ministers at the scene Sunday openly blamed Syrian military intelligence for the attack’s planning and execution.

This raised concerns in Moscow that Ankara was preparing to deliver a serious reprisal, possibly in the form of an aerial or missile assault, on Syrian military targets.

Russian tacticians reckoned that, after Israel’s two air strikes against Assad regime targets, the Tayyip Erdogan’s government could hardly avoid direct action without appearing to be failing in courage in the eyes of the Turkish public.

Some action is doubly pressing as Prime Minister Erdogan prepares to travel to Washington to meet President Barack Obama on May 16 and present him with evidence that Assad has used chemical weapons in his war on Syrian rebels.

The Reyhanli bombings and Turkey’s potential retaliation sent a fresh wave of alarm across the Syrian neighborhood. Once again, Israeli Air Force warplanes thundered Sunday across South Lebanon and over Hezbollah strongholds in the eastern Beqaa Valley near the Syrian border.

Given all these circumstances, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s chances are virtually nil of getting anywhere in his trip to the Black Sea resort of Sochi to persuade President Vladimir Putin to hold back advanced S-300 anti-air missiles from Syria. He can expect to find the Russian president driving full speed for arms deals – not just with Syria, but also with Iraq, Yemen and Sudan.

Putin clearly regards Obama’s decision to keep the US clear of military involvement in the Syrian conflict as an open gateway for a Russian military comeback to the Middle East after a 21-year absence, armed with a cornucopia of weapons for winning clients. For now, there is no stopping him, not even if Turkey or Israel were to embark themselves on military intervention.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=5019

May 08

Tribulation Temple Talk

Just beneath the boiling surface of seething hostility there can be sensed a moving and shaking. Talk of the building of a Jewish temple atop the Temple Mount is beginning to escape into the back-channel atmospherics of the Mid-East misery. How can such not be the case? Every direction the student of Bible prophecy looks, stage setting for the final act of this quickly decaying age is already on the scene.

God’s land is being further divided (Joel 3:2), which portends God’s bringing all nations into the Valley of Jehoshaphat─to Armageddon. The Roadmap to peace is being dusted-off and reintroduced as the blueprint for peace and safety for not only Israel and its blood-vowed enemies, but for the whole world, as insulation against the initiation of World War III.

The European Union (EU) is in turmoil. It is turmoil, however, that seems to have a smelting effect, preparing the iron of the legs, feet and toes of Daniel’s interpretation for Nebuchadnezzar — into their end of the age configuration. Technological wizardry of every description has made possible the bringing together of all peoples of planet Earth into one world─the New World Order, so desired by the globalist powers that be.

The economic upheaval experienced by most every nation cries out for a master manipulator that will institute an electronic funds transfer system in order to bring stability and order to the financial distress and perplexity that bedevils presidents, potentates and dictators. Such a man can’t be too far into the shadows of emerging world togetherness.

On the forefront of religious change is the call for a melding of every form of pathways to Heaven. The pope and Islamist Imams seem to be forging a synthesis of sorts in discovering many ways to God, a thing unheard of until very recently. Protestant America in large part seems not oppose the feelers crawling toward their forms of Christianity. So-called Chrislam is appealing to them, and ecumenism beckons with allurement at many levels.

So, with all of this and much more going on, the talk of the building of a Jewish temple should surprise none of us. It is a key ingredient in the coming Tribulation mixture within God’s cup of wrath. The talk of late on the possibility of a Jewish temple in the making revolves around the words of a Turkish TV producer, who is a Muslim. Sinem Tezyapar, as reported in The Jewish Press on March 14, said, “There is a broad expanse of land around the Al-Aqsa Mosque and the Dome of the Rock. The land there is quite convenient in that respect, and the temple can be placed just a little way from Qubbat As-Sakhrah, and a little ahead of Masjid el-Aqsa.”

This train of thought, of course, conforms to the long-held opinions of some within the universe of those who observe matters involving plans to build a Temple on Mount Moriah. Bible prophecy foretells, through the vision given John, God’s Hand on the Tribulation temple. “And there was given me a reed like unto a rod: and the angel stood, saying, Rise, and measure the temple of God, and the altar, and them that worship therein. But the court which is without the temple leave out, and measure it not; for it is given unto the Gentiles: and the holy city shall they tread under foot forty and two months” (Revelation 11:1-2).

The prophecy indicates, according to those with this view that:

1. During the Tribulation era there will definitely be a temple sitting where Solomon’s Temple sat. 2. There is more than enough room surrounding where the temple must reside for the Muslim shrines to sit.

There is a ton of chatter going on about all of this within the Bible prophecy community. Many voices within this blogosphere hold that those Muslims who seem to be letting it slip (that Israel’s Arab-Islamist enemies might be willing to talk about accommodation of a Jewish Temple) must never be trusted. It is all being done for some surreptitious evil known only to the Imams and to the master architect of their evil blueprint─Satan.

The very fact that there is talk coming from Israel’s enemies about the heretofore, unthinkable possibility of allowing a temple on Mount Moriah is significant, I think. A phony─and deadly─peace is at the center of Satan’s blueprint for usurping the throne of God on earth.

We can know this from Daniel’s account of the covenant Antichrist will confirm, assuring peace for seven years (Daniel 9:26-27). Also, Isaiah the prophet says so, (Isaiah 28:15, 18).

Satan intends to place his “messiah” right on the spot where the Holy of Holies sat, where the Ark of the Covenant resided within the Temple of Solomon’s day. So, I believe it is reasonable to look for the possibility of a rebuilt temple to become increasingly, front and center in news and blog-chatter as the age draws to a close.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=5001

May 04

Furnish on Pew findings re: Islam

Does This Paint It Black, or Am I A Fool to Cry? Breaking Down the New Pew Study of Muslims
by Timothy R. Furnish, PhD
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Pew has released another massive installment of data from its research, 2008-2012, into Muslim attitudes, entitled “The World’s Muslims: Religion, Politics and Society.” Over 38,000 Muslims in almost 40 countries were surveyed, thus constituting a survey both statistically sound and geographically expansive. Herewith is an analysis of that information and what seem to be its major ramifications.

The first section deals with shari`a, usually rendered simply as “Islamic law” but more accurately defined as “the rules of correct practice” which “cover every possible human contingency, social and individual, from birth to death” and based upon the Qur’an and hadiths (sayings and practices attributed to Muhammad) as interpreted by Islamic religious scholars (Marshal G.S. Hodgson, The Venture of Islam, Vol 1: The Classical Age of Islam, p. 74). Asked “should sharia [as Pew anglicizes it] be the law of the land,” 57% of Muslims across 38 countries answered “yes” — including, most problematically for the US: 99% of Afghans, 91% of Iraqis, 89% of Palestinians, 84% of Pakistanis and even 74% of Egyptians. Should sharia apply to non-Muslims as well as Muslims? Across 21 countries surveyed on this question, 40% answered affirmatively — with the highest positive response coming from Egypt (its 74% exceeding even Afghanistan’s 61%). And on the question whether sharia punishments — such as whippings and cutting off of thieves’ hands — should be enacted, the 20-country average was 52%, led by Pakistan (88%), Afghanistan (81%), the Palestinian Territories [PT] (76%) and Egypt (70-%). On the specific penalty of stoning for adultery, the 20-country average was 51% — with, again, Pakistan (89%), Afghanistan (85%), the PT (84%) and Egypt (71%) highest in approval. Finally, 38% of Muslims, across those same 20 nations, support the death penalty for those leaving Islam for another religion.

Huge majorities of Muslims across most of these surveyed nations say that “it’s good others can practice their faith” — but Pew’s imprecise terminology on this topic makes possible that this simply mean many Muslims are willing to grant non-Muslims the tolerated, but second-class, ancient status of the dhimmi. Majorities, too, in most countries say that “democracy is better than a powerful leader;” however, the latter was actually preferred by most surveyed in Russia, Bosnia-Hercegovina, Kyrgyzstan, Afghanistan and Pakistan, as well as by 42% of Iraqis, 40% of Palestinians and 36% of Egyptians. Most Afghans, Egyptians and Tunisians (and even 1/3 of Turks) believe that “Islamic political parties” are better than other ones, although 53% of Indonesians and 45% of Iraqis are also worried about “Muslim extremists.” (Curiously, 31% of Malaysians are, on the other hand, worried about “Christian extremists” — although evidence of such existing in that country is practically non-existent.) There is good news on the question of suicide bombing, however: across 20 countries, only 13.5% think it is ever justified — although the support is much higher in the PT (40%), Afghanistan (39%) and Egypt (29%).

In terms of morality, large majorities in most Muslim countries (especially outside Sub-Saharan Africa) think drinking alcohol is morally repugnant, notably in Malaysia (93%), Pakistan and Indonesia (both 91%). Most Muslims in most countries surveyed consider abortion wrong, as well as pre- and extra-marital sex and, almost needless to say, homosexuality. (Although one wishes Pew had asked about mu`tah, or “temporary marriage” — a practice originally Twelver Shi`i which has increasingly become used by Sunnis.) Yet, simultaneously — following Qur’anic rubrics — some 30% of Muslims in 21 countries support polygamy, including almost half of Palestinians, 46% of Iraqis and 41% of Egyptians. There is also significant support for honor killings in not just Afghanistan and Iraq but also Egypt and the PT. Over ¾ of Muslims across 23 countries says that “wives must always obey their husbands:” an average of 77%. And Pew notes that there is a statistically very significant correlation between sharia-support and believing women have few(er) rights.

Asked whether they believed they were “following Muhammad’s example,” 75% of Afghans and 55% of Iraqis answered affirmatively — although most Muslims were not nearly so confident. On the question “are Sunni-Shi`i tensions a problem,” 38% of Lebanese, 34% of Pakistanis, 23% of Iraqis and 20% of Afghans said “yes.”

It is no surprise that huge majorities of Muslims in most surveyed countries believe that Islam is the only path to salvation, nor that most also say “it’s a duty to convert others” to Islam. It is somewhat counterintuitive, however, that many Muslims say they “know little about Christianity” — even in places with large Christian minorities, such as Egypt. Muslims in Sub-Saharan Africa are the most likely to agree that “Islam and Christianity have a lot in common,” and so are 42% of Palestianians, as well as some 1/3 of Lebanese and Egyptians. But only 10% of Pakistanis agree. Asked whether they ever engaged in “interfaith meetings,” many Muslims in Sub-Saharan Africa said that they did (with Christians), and a majority of Thais said likewise (albeit with Buddhists). But only 8% of Palestinians, 5% of Iraqis, and 4% of Egyptians said they ever do so—despite substantial Christian populations in each of those areas.

Regarding the question “are religion and science in conflict,” most Muslims said “no” — with the exceptions of Lebanon, Bangladesh, Tunisia and Turkey where over 40% in each country (and, actually, a majority in Lebanon) said that they were at loggerheads. Most Muslims also say they have no problems with believing in Allah and evolution — the exceptions being the majority of Afghans and Indonesians. Regarding popular culture, clear majorities of Muslims in many countries say they like Western music, TV and movies—but, at the same time, similar majorities say that such things undermine morality (although Bollywood less so than Hollywood).

Observations:

1) The high degree of support for sharia is the red flag here. Contra media and adminstration (both Obama and Bush) assurances that most Muslims are “moderate,” empirical data now exists that clearly shows most Muslims, in point of fact, support not just sharia in general but its brutal punishments. Perhaps just as disturbing, almost four in ten Muslims are in favor of killing those who choose to follow another religion. And countries in which the US is heavily involved either diplomatically or militarily (or both) are the very ones where such sentiments run most high: Pakistan, Afghanistan, Egypt, the Palestinian Territories. So are the “extremists” these very Muslims who want to follow, literally, the Qur’an and hadiths? Messers Brennan, Holder and Obama have some explaining to do.

2) Afghanistan would appear to be a lost cause. Afghans are at the top of almost every list in support for not just sharia, suicide bombing, honor killing and — ironically (or perhaps not) — confidence that they are emulating Islam’s founder, as well as dislike for democracy. In light of this clear data, two points about Afghanistan become clear: tactically, ostensible American befuddlement as to the causes of “green on blue” attacks and the continuing popularity of the Taliban in Afghanistan appears as willful ignorance; strategically, the US decision to stay there after taking out the al-Qa`ida [AQ] staging, post-9/11, and attempt to modernize Afghanistan was a huge, neo-Wilsonian mistake. 2014 cannot come soon enough.

3) In some ways Islam in Southeastern Europe, and to a lesser extent in Central Asia, seems to be a more tolerant brand of the faith than the Middle Eastern variety. For example, the SE European and Central Asian Muslims are the least likely to support the death penalty for “apostasy,” and the most supportive of letting women decide for themselves whether to veil. And Muslims in Sub-Saharan Africa are the most likely to know about Christianity, and to interact with Christians. On the other hand, African Muslims are among the most enamored of sharia, and Central Asian ones fond of letting qadis (Islamic judges) decide family and property disputes. So there does not seem to be a direct link between Westernization and moderation; in fact, the influence of Sufism — Islamic mysticism — in the regard needs to be correlated and studied (beyond what Pew did on the topic in last year’s analysis).

4) One bit of prognostication based on this data: Malaysia may be the next breeding ground of Islamic terrorism. It’s home to some 17 million Muslims (61% of its 28 million people), who hold a congeries of unsettling views: 86% want sharia the law of the land; 67% favor the death penalty for apostasy; 66% like sharia-compliant corporal punishments; 60% support stoning for adultery; and 18% think suicide bombing is justified. PACOM, SOCOM and the intelligence agencies need to ramp up hiring of Malay linguists and analysts.

5) Finally, some words for those — like FNC’s Megyn Kelly and Julie Roginsky (on the former’s show “American Live,” 4/30/13) — who pose a sociopolitical and moral equivalence between Muslim support for sharia and Evangelical Protestant Christian support for wives’ obedience to husbands: that’s a bit too much sympathy for the devil. Yes, Evangelical Christian pastors hold some pretty conservative views of the family, as per a 2011 Pew study of them; for example, 55% of them do agree that “a wife must always obey her husband” (compared to 77% of Muslims). And, ironically, many such Evangelicals agree in large measure with Muslims on issues such as the immorality of alcohol, abortion and homosexuality. However, one searches in vain for any Evangelical (or other) Christian support for whippings, stonings, amputation of thieves’ limbs, polygamy or suicide bombing.

Islam is the world’s second-largest religion, numbering some 1.6 billion humans (behind only Christianity’s 2.2 billion). There is, thus, enormous diversity of opinion on many issues of doctrine and practice, and essentializing Islam as either “peaceful” or “violent” is fraught with peril. Nonetheless, this latest Pew study provides empirical evidence that many — far too many — Muslims cling to a literalist, supremacist and indeed brutal view of their religion. Insha’allah, this will change eventually — but time is not necessarily on our side.

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Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=4983

Apr 25

The Army of Black Flags

Will Islam Be Our Future?
A Study of Biblical and Islamic Eschatology
By: Joel Richardson

The Army of Black Flags
(Excerpt from Chapter 4. The Mahdi: Islam’s Awaited Messiah)

The Mahdi’s ascendancy to power is said to be preceded by an army from the east who will be carrying black flags or banners of war.  Sheikh Kabbani states:

Hadith indicate that black flags coming from the area of Khorasan will signify the appearance of the Mahdi is nigh.  Khorasan is in todays Iran, and some scholars have said that this hadith means when the black flags appear from Central Asia, i.e. in the direction of Khorasan, then the appearance of the Mahdi is imminent. 17

Another tradition states that:

The Messenger of Allah said: The black banners will come from the East and their hearts will be as firm as iron.  Whoever hears of them should join them and give allegiance, even if it means crawling across snow. 18

In Islam there are two flags.  One is white and one is black.  Written across both flags in Arabic are the words, “There is no God but Allah and Muhammad is his Messenger”.  The white flag is called Al-Liwaa and serves as the sign for the leader of the Muslim army and is the flag of the Islamic State.  The black flag is called Ar-Raya and is used by the Muslim army. It is also called the flag of jihad, and is carried into battle.  One flag is governmental and the other is a military flag. 19 When Muhammad returned to his home city of Mecca after being exiled for eight years, he returned as a conqueror.  With him were ten thousand Muslim soldiers.  They carried with them black flags.  On the flags was one word written in Arabic: punishment. 20 

I was once talking to a group of young Muslim men and asking them some questions.  I asked them if the obvious superior militaries of America and Israel compared to the militaries of any Islamic nations were a source of difficulty for many Muslims.  One of these men then became very angry at my question and snapped out, “You Americans and Zionists better get ready, because the black flags are coming!”  At the time, I had no idea what he was talking about.  Later I learned the meaning. 

The Conquering Of Israel

Islamic tradition pictures the Mahdi as joining with the army of Muslim warriors carrying black flags.  The Mahdi will then lead this army to Israel and re-conquer it for Islam.  The Jews will be slaughtered until very few remain and Jerusalem will become the location of the Mahdi’s rule over the Earth. 

Rasulullah [Muhammad] said: “Armies carrying black flags will come from Khurasan. No power will be able to stop them and they will finally reach Eela (Baitul Maqdas in Jerusalem) where they will erect their flags.” 21

It is important to note here the reference above to “Baitul Maqdas”.  In Arabic this means “the holy house”.  This is referring to the Dome of the Rock Mosque and is located on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. 

In a particularly venomous manner, Egyptian authors, Muhammad ibn Izzat and Muhammd ‘Arif comment on the above tradition:

The Mahdi will be victorious and eradicate those pigs and dogs and the idols of this time so that there will once more be a caliphate based on prophethood as the hadith states… Jerusalem will be the location of the rightly guided caliphate and the center of Islamic rule, which will be headed by Imam al-Mahdi… That will abolish the leadership of the Jews… and put an end to the domination of the Satans who spit evil into people and cause corruption in the earth, making them slaves of false idols and ruling the world by laws other than the Shari’a [Islamic Law] of the Lord of the worlds. (Emphasis mine) 22

There is a very famous tradition that is often quoted throughout the Islamic world that speaks of the Mahdi’s military campaign against Israel.  The tradition is both sickening and very sobering:

The Prophet said… The last hour would not come unless the Muslims will fight against the Jews and the Muslims would kill them until the Jews would hide themselves behind a stone or a tree and a stone or a tree would say: Muslim, or the servant of Allah, there is a Jew behind me; come and kill him… (Emphasis mine) 23

Are these Islamic black flags the banner Isaiah prophesied about in the following passage concerning the last days?  I have not yet ruled it out as I fully believe the Bible, God’s written Word, gives us insight and understanding for everything that is going on today.

Isaiah 13:1-9
1 The burden of Babylon, which Isaiah the son of Amoz did see.
2 Lift ye up a banner upon the high mountain, exalt the voice unto them, shake the hand, that they may go into the gates of the nobles.
3 I have commanded my sanctified ones, I have also called my mighty ones for mine anger, even them that rejoice in my highness.
4 The noise of a multitude in the mountains, like as of a great people; a tumultuous noise of the kingdoms of nations gathered together: the LORD of hosts mustereth the host of the battle.
5 They come from a far country, from the end of heaven, even the LORD, and the weapons of his indignation, to destroy the whole land.
6 Howl ye; for the day of the LORD is at hand; it shall come as a destruction from the Almighty.
7 Therefore shall all hands be faint, and every man’s heart shall melt:
8 And they shall be afraid: pangs and sorrows shall take hold of them; they shall be in pain as a woman that travaileth: they shall be amazed one at another; their faces shall be as flames.
9 Behold, the day of the LORD cometh, cruel both with wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate: and he shall destroy the sinners thereof out of it.

Yet while the black Islamic banner of jihad waves, God never leaves His people without hope and in the following passage, directed to the nation of Israel in the last days, God tells us He has a banner of His own that will be displayed over them that fear Him!

Psalm 60:1-5
1 O God, thou hast cast us off, thou hast scattered us, thou hast been displeased; O turn thyself to us again.
2 Thou hast made the earth to tremble; thou hast broken it: heal the breaches thereof; for it shaketh.
3 Thou hast shewed thy people hard things: thou hast made us to drink the wine of astonishment.
4 Thou hast given a banner to them that fear thee, that it may be displayed because of the truth. Selah.
5 That thy beloved may be delivered; save with thy right hand, and hear me.

The word banner is only recorded three times in the King James Bible.  This last occurrence describes God’s banner over the Bride of Christ.

Song of Solomon 2:4
He brought me to the banqueting house, and his banner over me was love.

Now read all three passages together as the understanding we get regarding what is presently playing out before our eyes in the Middle East is truly amazing!

  • When Islam waves its black flags in war (Isaiah 13:2)
  • Israel begins to call out to God to save them (Psalm 60:4)
  • The bride is brought (caught up) to God’s banqueting house (Song of Solomon 2:4)

Wow!  And to think this little impromptu Bible study came about just from reading a news article.  God is so faithful and gracious to give us understanding regarding current events!  Keep looking up!

Until That Day…

Revelation 22:20
He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly. Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus

black flags

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=4970

Apr 21

Boston bombers: FBI hunting 12-strong terrorist “sleeper cell” linked to brothers Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev

Police believe the pair were specially trained to carry out the devastating attack

The FBI was last night hunting a 12-strong terrorist “sleeper cell” linked to the Boston marathon bomb brothers.

Police believe Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev were specially trained to carry out the devastating attack.

More than 1,000 FBI operatives were last night working to track down the cell and arrested a man and two women 60 miles from Boston in the hours before Dzhokhar’s dramatic capture after a bloody shootout on Friday.

A source close to the investigation said: “We have no doubt the brothers were not acting alone. The devices used to detonate the two bombs were highly sophisticated and not the kind of thing people learn from Google.

“They were too advanced. Someone gave the brothers the skills and it is now our job to find out just who they were. Agents think the sleeper cell has up to a dozen members and has been waiting several years for their day to come.”

A specialist team of CIA and FBI interrogators was yesterday flown to a Boston hospital to grill wounded Dzhokhar, 19, about the secret group. The University of Massachusetts student was caught on Friday after hiding out in a boat parked in a garden in locked down Watertown the day after a gun battle with police left his 26-year-old brother and a rookie cop dead.

Dzhokhar is said to have run his brother over as he escaped in a stolen car while Tamerlan lay handcuffed on the ground. They were carrying six bombs with them at the time, three of which ­exploded, as well as a handgun and rifle. The devices were thought to be pipe bombs.

Last night Dzhokhar – badly wounded but alive – lay handcuffed to his hospital bed under armed guard. The other three arrested in the port of New Bedford are also believed to be of college age.

Dzhokhar even went to a college party two days after the bombs wreaked havoc at the finish line. According to fellow students, he “looked relaxed” as he joined in a party at the campus on Wednesday night.

Hours later he was involved in the shootout which saw his brother killed.

Investigators have begun piecing together how the “well-mannered” brothers of Chechen origin were radicalised. Neighbours of the family said older brother Tamerlan had recently become obsessed with Islam. He mysteriously left the US in January last year to spend six months in Russia. Yesterday senior FBI counter-terrorism official Kevin Brock said: “It’s a key thread for investigators.”

It also emerged the Bureau interviewed Tamerlan two years ago, at the request of the Russian government, but could not establish that he had ties to terrorist radicals.

This was despite his worrying Russian-language YouTube page featuring links to extremist Islamic sites and others since taken down by YouTube.

One link showed an hour-long speech by an Islamic teacher called Shaykh Feiz Mohammed, while other videos are labled “Terrorists” and “Islam”.

The radical cleric, with links to extremist British Muslims, encouraged his followers to become martyrs for Islam. He said: “Teach them this: There is nothing more beloved to me than wanting to die as a mujahid.”

Yesterday the brothers’ mother Zubeidat, speaking from her home in Russia, added further intrigue to her sons’ murky past when she claimed the boys had been framed by the FBI over the two bombs last Monday that left three dead and 178 injured.

She claimed the FBI had been keeping watch on her eldest boy for up to five years. She said: “They knew what my son was doing. They knew what sites on the internet he was going to.

“They were telling me that he was really an extremist leader and that they were afraid of him. They told me whatever information he is getting, he gets from these extremist sites. They were controlling him.”

The bombers’ father Anzor wept at news that his youngest son had been captured alive. In a phone interview with a US news channel he told his

son: “Tell police everything. Everything. Just be honest.”

US Government officials have said the brothers were not under surveillance as possible militants. And an FBI statement said the matter was closed because interviews with Tamerlan and family members “did not find any terrorism activity, domestic or foreign”. But now they believe the pair, who emigrated to the United States from Dagestan about a decade ago, were part of a terror cell.

College dropout Tamerlan’s American wife Katherine Russell, 24, and their three-year-old daughter Zahara were yesterday thrown into the spotlight. She was a Christian before they married but converted to Islam. Her parents Warren, a doctor, and Judith were said to be “stunned” by their son-in-law’s involvement in the tragedy.

Judith and Warren issued a joint statement saying: “Our daughter has lost her husband today, the father of her child. In the aftermath of the Patriot’s Day horror, we know we never really knew Tamerlan Tsarnaev. Our hearts are sickened by the horror he has inflicted.”

Katherine, wearing a black hijab, was picked up by FBI agents at their home in Cambridge near Boston on Friday. Dope-smoker Dzhokhar was captured after a Watertown resident called police to say the fugitive was hiding in a boat in his back garden.

David Henneberry had gone into his garden for a cigarette after police lifted restrictions on people leaving their homes, believing the bomber had left the area. He noticed that the cover over his boat had blood on it and a strap had been cut. He went back into the house to get a stepladder and looked inside.

His stepson Robert said: “He stuck his head under the tarp and noticed a pool of blood and something crumpled up in a ball. Instead of being a hero of the moment and yelling at what we now know was the suspect, he did the right thing and called 911.”

Police immediately evacuated the family and surrounded the house, using a megaphone to tell Dzhokhar to come out with his hands up.

When he failed to respond they opened fire at the boat’s hull. Robert said: “They wound up ­shooting a couple of rounds through the boat. He wasn’t going to like that.”

Dzhokhar was wounded by the volley of gunfire and police were able to move in and arrest him. They later released infrared pictures taken from a helicopter showing Dzhokhar hiding in the boat.

Investigators will interrogate the bomber, still seriously ill last night, without reading him his rights – using special “public safety” powers.

The family of eight-year-old bombing victim Martin Richard welcomed the arrest of Tsarnaev. “Our community is once again safe from these men,” the family said in a statement.

Shortly before Dzhokhar’s capture, President Obama spoke by phone to Russian President Vladimir Putin. The White House said Obama “praised the close co-operation the US has received from Russia on counter-terrorism, including in the wake of the Boston attack”.

There were scenes of celebration across Boston as news spread of the capture of the remaining bomber.

a flag

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=4950

Apr 13

Egypt and Sudan: The emerging “King of the South” alliance?

Egyptian President Mohammad Morsi and Sudanese President Omar Al-Bashir have met together to declare bilateral relations between their two countries. You can read about these meetings at Front Page Magazine here. Ahram online also reported on the meeting here. Both leaders rose to power through the support of the Muslim Brotherhood within their respective nations. Why might this be significant as it relates to Biblical prophecy? Well, in Daniel 11:43, we are told that in “the last days”, there would specifically emerge an Egyptian-Sudanese-Libyan alliance. In verse 40, we are told that in the last days, there would be a military clash between the “King of the South” (Egypt) and “the King of the North”. Historically, this refers to the region where Syria, Turkey, and Iraq intersect, but which I believe it refers to modern day Turkey. The Scriptural basis for this first, is the clear emphasis of Ezekiel 38-39 on Asia Minor / Turkey as well as the fact that it was in Turkey that the World witnessed the “fatal head wound” of the seventh beast empire. Revelation 13 and 17 informs us that after the Roman Empire, another empire, a seventh empire, would emerge that would suffer a fatal head wound but that would eventually be revived as the eighth empire, it stands to reason that even as it was the Ottoman Empire / Caliphate that suffered the head wound. It this stands to reason that because it was in the Ottoman Empire that the historical continuum of the Islamic Caliphates suffered a fatal head wound, so also will the Ottoman Empire experience the miraculous revival. And of course, on the ground, all evidence points now to a re-emergent Turkey with growing regional influence and stature. The fact that we are seeing an emerging Turkish power in the North at the same time that we are seeing an emerging assertive Egypt is certainly worth watching. And as the African nations of Egypt and Sudan, two of the nations specifically highlighted by the prophet Daniel begin to publicly identify with one another, then we also must ask if we are drawing closer. While it is too soon to know for sure or to declare these things with clarity, it certainly does seem to be moving in the direction of fulfilling the prophecy of Daniel 11. The return of Jesus very well could be much closer than many think. Let us be about the work of God.

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Mar 09

Top General: At Least One Arab State to Go Nuclear If Iran Does

Commander of U.S. Central Command Gen. James Mattis said Tuesday that ”at least one other nation” has told him “at the leadership level” they will seek nuclear weapons if Iran goes nuclear:

SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R., S.C.): If the Iranians develop a nuclear capability, how certain are you that other nations in the region would acquire an equal capability?

MATTIS: At least one other nation has told me they would do that, at a leadership level, they have assured me they would not stay without a nuclear weapon if Iran armed.

GRAHAM: Was that a Sunni-Arab state?

MATTIS: Yes, sir.

GRAHAM: So the likelihood of Sunni-Arab states acquiring nuclear capability to counter the Shia Persians is great, would you not agree with that?

MATTIS: I agree, and also other non-Sunni-Arab states in the general region.

The statements by Mattis contradict the findings of a recent report drafted by former Obama Pentagon official Colin Kahl and produced for the Center for New American Security. That report argues that Saudi Arabia–as well as other states–would be unlikely to develop nuclear weapons if Iran acquired nuclear weapons.

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Feb 14

North Korea and Iran – partners in nuclear and missile programs

 

There is full awareness in Washington and Jerusalem that the North Korean nuclear test conducted Tuesday, Feb. 12, brings Iran that much closer to conducting a test of its own. A completed bomb or warhead are not necessary for an underground nuclear test; a device which an aircraft or missile can carry is enough.

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s boast this week that Iran will soon place a satellite in orbit at an altitude of 36,000 kilometers – and Tehran’s claim on Feb. 4 to have sent a monkey into space – highlight Iran’s role in the division of labor Pyongyang and Tehran have achieved in years of collaboration: the former focusing on a nuclear armament and the latter on long-range missile technology to deliver it. 

Their advances are pooled. Pyongyang maintains a permanent mission of nuclear and missile scientists in Tehran, whereas Iranian experts are in regular attendance at North Korea’s nuclear and missile tests.

Since the detonation of the “miniature atomic bomb” reported by Pyongyang Tuesday – which US President Barack Obama called “a threat to US National security”- Iran must be presumed to have acquired the same “miniature atomic bomb” capabilities – or even assisted in the detonation.
Word of the North Korean atomic test reminded US officials of Ahmadinejad’s boast only a couple of days ago about the forthcoming launch of an Iranian satellite into orbit.  The two events clearly hang together as probably coordinated between Tehran and Pyongyang.
Ahead of the UN Security Council emergency session later Tuesday, Kim Jong Un’s government warned of “stronger actions” after the nuclear test.  Its diplomat warned the UN disarmament forum that his country will “never bow to any resolutions.”
The nuclear threat is not the only unconventional warfare peril looming closer. In Damascus, Syrian rebels are nearer than ever before to crashing through the capital’s last lines of defense. Tuesday, they were only 1.5 kilometers short of the heart of Damascus.
Western and Israeli military sources believe that if the Syrian rebels reach this target, the Syrian ruler Bashar Assad will have no qualms about using chemical weapons for the first time in the two-year civil war to save his regime. Both the US and Israel have warned him that doing so would cross a red line.

debkafile’s military sources report that Syrian rebel forces, spearheaded by an Al Qaeda-allied Islamist brigade, gained entry Tuesday to the 4th Division’s (Republican Guard) main base in the Adra district of eastern Damascus and are fighting the defenders in hand to hand combat for control of the facility.

Other rebel forces are retaking parts of the Damascus ring road in fierce battles, thereby cutting off the Syrian army’s Homs units in the north from their supply lines from the capital.

These two rebel thrusts, if completed, would bring the Syrian army closer than ever before to collapse. Assad is therefore expected to use every means at his disposal to cut his enemies down.

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Feb 12

IS ALLAH THE ANTICHRIST?

Video suggests John saw Arabic writing in Revelation visions

Published: 22 hours ago

by Michael Carl

Bible and Middle Eastern scholars are noting a similarity between the Arabic name for Allah and the Greek letters naming the Beast of Revelation.

Former PLO operative turned Christian Arabic-language researcher Walid Shoebat affirms there’s evidence that the name of Allah in Arabic is what the apostle John saw in his vision of the Antichrist’s name in the book of Revelation.

Shoebat, author of “God’s War on Terror,” explained that because John didn’t know Arabic, it’s possible he transcribed the name of the Beast as best he could into Greek letters. The Arabic name for “Allah” and its accompanying symbols resembles the ancient Greek script for “666.”

“It seems that more Bible prophecy students are coming to grips with what we stated years ago in ‘God’s War on Terror,’” Shoebat said. “Skeptics argue that the three Greek letters are Greek and not Arabic, yet none deny that these three Greek letters do read in Arabic. I find that interesting. In other words, we have been telling the truth.

“Some die-hard skeptics will ignore the very symbols given by John, and people will always try to poke holes into any theory,” Shoebat said, “but the evidence is overwhelming.”

Shoebat said the key to the theory connecting the name of Allah to the Beast is understanding the significance of names.

He quotes from Revelation 13:7: “And that no man might buy or sell, save that he had the mark, or the name of the Beast, or the number of the name.”

“Indeed, we have three flavors: mark, name and number,” Shoebat said. “Yet most focus and argue over the mark while they ignore the name.”

In the Bible, he explained,  a name is a title or creed.

“For example, Jesus was called Emmanuel, ‘God with us.’ While His name is not literally Emmanuel, its meaning is,” Shoebat said. “He is God with us. Similarly, the name of the Beast is his title and creed and not a literal name.”

Want to delve deeper into the Islamic connection to the End Times? Be sure to read “The Islamic Antichrist” and “Mideast Beast” by Joel Richardson.

Shoebat said the most compelling case for the similarity between the Greek name for the Beast and the name for Allah is how Muslims wear the name of Allah.

“Any Christian skeptic who would like to argue that the Islamic creed, the name, the title and the declaration of faith is not blasphemous, please step forth,” Shoebat said. “Yet is it not what many Muslims put on their forehead? Or are we still led to believe the mark of the Beast to be a computer chip?”

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Feb 03

TEHRAN HITS SAUDI ARABIA WITH VEILED THREAT

WASHINGTON – Iran has watched as Saudi Arabia has incited Sunnis to create instability in neighboring Iraq and Riyadh has launched concerted efforts to overthrow the Iranian-backed Shi’ite Alawite regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, according to report from Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin.

 

Now the chairman of the Iranian joint chiefs of staff, Brig. Gen. Hasan Firouzabadi, says he wants to avoid a sectarian war between Sunnis and Shi’a, but he also issued a veiled threat against Riyadh.

He accused the Saudi kingdom of using jihadists to undermine Shi’ites in the region, given increasingly unsettling events in Iraq and in Syria. Firouzbadi has spoken out given the growing concern that the rising Sunni turmoil in Iraq poses a security threat to Iran.

For some time, however, that has been the strategy of Saudi Arabia, which has decided to undertake an independent course of action from the restraint urged by the United States out of concern that Iran is spreading its influence in the Gulf Arab countries which are controlled by monarchies.

To date, the U.S. has not criticized Saudi Arabia for its support for jihadists in other countries that are attempting to arouse Sunnis in the Middle East. This is due to the close ties the U.S. has with the Saudi kingdom, long considered a key element of cohesion among the Gulf Arab countries on which the U.S. relies to maintain its security interests in the region.

And U.S. support for the Saudis continues despite the knowledge that the Saudis actively are using jihadists as proxies to enforce their own security interests.

According to Ali Akbar Velayati, who is Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s top international affairs adviser, Saudi use of jihadists to press the collapse of the al-Assad regime by Saudi Arabia is considered a “red line.”

“Those remarks were a message to the Saudis that the kingdom is looking at a major regional sectarian conflict if it continues to support the dozens of jihadist militias fighting the Syrian regime,” according to a report in the open intelligence group Strafor.

Velayati then suggested that the best approach was for a negotiated settlement between Iran and Saudi Arabia.

The response from Saudi Prince Saud al-Faisal was telling. He said that a political solution to the Syrian crisis wasn’t going to happen, which Stratfor said was a signal that Riyadh wasn’t interested in negotiations.

This position may be due to Riyadh seeing this being the time to push Iranian influence back now that its previous positions in Iraq and Syria are increasingly tenuous. They want to take advantage of the large blocs of Sunnis in Iraq and in Syria where Sunnis constitute some 60 percent of the population.

Sources believe Saudi use of jihadist proxies is due to the lack of enthusiasm by nationalists and other secular forces to openly fight Iran and the Shi’a who back al-Assad. The jihadists are all too eager to carry the fight against the Shi’ites in Iraq and Syria, especially given the financial and logistical backing from Riyadh.

Just as Iran has called attempts to overthrow al-Assad a “red line,” sources see Iran bringing in its own insurgents to fight the Sunni jihadists. At the same time, Tehran wants to show how the Saudi kingdom is more prone to use jihadists as opposed to Sunni Turkey or Qatar, who don’t necessarily agree with Riyadh’s use of them.

These countries fear that Riyadh can’t or doesn’t control the jihadists outside the kingdom, making their own governments prone to potential jihadist attacks.

The U.S., however, equally is concerned over the use of jihadists and al-Qaida, especially in Iraq and Syria, due to the geopolitical changes that would sweep the region should they prevail.

“(Washington) will cautiously use the sectarian fault line running through the region to try to maintain a difficult balance of power,” the Stratfor report said. “What this means is that a major, long-term geopolitical conflict along the northern rim of the Middle East is highly likely.”

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