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Trump prepares for visit by Saudi prince who has rocked the kingdom

Saudis demanding same rights given the Iranians to produce nuclear power power and enrich uranium

By Jerome Cartillier Today, 3:55 am 3

WASHINGTON — Donald Trump will host Saudi Arabia’s crown prince in Washington Tuesday, giving the president a receptive audience to denounce rival Iran and a chance to take stock of significant changes the prince is engineering in the kingdom.

Ten months after the last face-to-face meeting between Trump and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, in Riyadh, the 71-year-old president and the 32-year-old strongman prince are expected to deepen an already warm and congenial relationship.

But they are also expected to take up major developments for Saudi Arabia, both internally and externally: the end of a ban on Saudi women driving, the unprecedented detention of dozens of people that was billed as a high-level anti-corruption purge, Saudi involvement in the war in Yemen, and the crisis with the Gulf state of Qatar.

“It’s jaw-dropping how many policy changes the Saudis have pursued at home and in the region since that last meeting,” said Lori Plotkin Boghardt, a former CIA analyst now with the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. “Many of these changes have touched US security interests.”

One example is the summit that the administration had hoped to host this year with the six countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), which could be difficult to arrange given the continuing crisis with Qatar.

In June, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) began an air and sea boycott against Qatar, which they accuse of financing terrorism and being overly friendly with Iran.

Prince Mohammed, known by his initials MBS, was named crown prince that month by his father, King Salman.

Early on, the prince announced an ambitious “Vision 2030” initiative to build an economy less dependent on oil, while luring more foreign investment.

Toward that end, Riyadh wants to greatly accelerate the pace of its civilian nuclear energy program. The goal: to build 16 reactors over the next 20 years, at a cost of some 80 billion euros ($98 billion), according to officials and analysts.

As the Saudis pursue the technology needed to undertake the ambitious project, they are expected to play potential rivals against one another, reminding their American counterparts that China, Russia and France are also capable of filling their needs.

“It would be virtually impossible for the Saudi government to accept terms that are less than what Obama gave the Iranians — the possibility of future enrichment,” a source close to the Saudi government told AFP, referring to the nuclear deal between Tehran and world powers that was completed when Barack Obama was still president.

In an interview with CBS broadcast on Sunday evening, the prince defended at length his anti-corruption purge which saw many of the kingdom’s princes detained for several weeks inside Riyadh’s luxurious Ritz-Carlton hotel.

“What we did in Saudi Arabia was extremely necessary” and legal, he said. One goal of the operation, which was marked by physical abuse according to a New York Times investigation, was to recover an amount exceeding $100 billion.

“But the real objective was not this amount or any other amount,” he said. “The idea is not to get money, but to punish the corrupt and send a clear signal that whoever engages in corrupt deals will face the law.”

 Bloody war in Yemen

The United States and Saudi Arabia are historic allies. Ever since Franklin Delano Roosevelt met with King Abdul Aziz ibn Saud on a US naval ship in the Suez Canal in 1945, every American president has carefully nurtured relations with the Saudi royal family.

But the unstinting support Trump offered when he chose Riyadh as the destination of his first overseas trip as president brought the relationship to a new level.

While Barack Obama said in 2015 that it was important “not to perpetuate any long-term confrontation with Iran, or to even marginalize Iran,” Trump, who has repeatedly threatened to withdraw from the nuclear deal reached that year with Tehran, has chosen a very different path.

“Everywhere we go in the Middle East it’s Iran, Iran, Iran,” he said a few days ago. “Every problem is Iran.”

Even before setting foot on American soil, Prince Mohammed struck a scathing tone toward Iran in an interview with CBS, comparing the territorial ambitions of that country’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei to those of Adolf Hitler in Nazi Germany.

And he warned that if Iran were to develop a nuclear bomb, Saudi Arabia would do the same “as soon as possible.”

But critics are cautioning the White House not to blindly embrace every stance taken by the Saudi prince, particularly as concerns its role in the bloody civil war in Yemen.

Fighting between the Huthi movement, supported by Iran, and Yemeni government forces, backed by the Saudis and the UAE, has claimed nearly 10,000 lives and left the country on the verge of a disastrous famine.

In an opinion column early this month in the New York Times, Thomas Friedman, writing in the form of an open letter to Trump, urged the president not to give in to Prince Mohammed’s “bad impulses” as he seeks to modernize Saudi Arabia’s “economy and religious/social structure.”

He then adds: “If you think you can just applaud his anti-Iran stance and religious reforms and all will work out fine, you’re wrong.”

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9086

New U.S. Secretary of State Pompeo must respect Turkey, Ankara says

Reuters Staff

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Turkey hopes to build good relations with new U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo but he must respect the country, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Wednesday, amid deep tensions over Syria policy and other issues.

FILE PHOTO: Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) Director Mike Pompeo testifies before the Senate Intelligence Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, U.S., February 13, 2018. REUTERS/Aaron P. Bernstein/File Photo

Turkish media has seized on a tweet purportedly made by Pompeo after a failed coup in July 2016 – and before he became CIA director – which referred to Turkey as a “totalitarian Islamist dictatorship”. The tweet was later removed.

Relations between the NATO allies had started to improve recently after a visit to Turkey by Rex Tillerson, whom U.S. President Donald Trump sacked on Tuesday as secretary of state.

Pompeo, seen as a Trump loyalist, had previously headed the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu speaks during a press conference with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov in Moscow, Russia, March 14, 2018. REUTERS/Sergei Karpukhin

“We would like to work with the new secretary of state with the same understanding, with bilateral respect and understanding,” Cavusoglu told a news conference in Moscow, where he was on an official visit.

“This is the choice of the United States (on who serves as secretary of state). We do not want to comment on it but whoever it will be, they need to first learn how to behave, approach and respect us.”

Cavusoglu said talks planned between the United States and Turkey for March 19 could be delayed owing to Tillerson’s departure.

In a column on Wednesday, Murat Yetkin of the Hurriyet Daily News wrote that Pompeo had “prejudgments” regarding Turkey, citing the deleted tweet, and he added that it was not easy to erase people’s memories.

Turkey has been angered by Washington’s support for the Syrian Kurdish YPG militia in the fight against Islamic State. Turkey sees the YPG as a terrorist group and an extension of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK).

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9084

With Red Sea mega-city, Saudis eye economic unity with Egypt, Jordan

“If they are really going to develop this in desert areas of all three countries, you’d expect Israeli technology perhaps to have a role to play.”

By Ben Lynfield

March 13, 2018 09:16

Building Red Sea mega-city, Saudis eye economic integration with Egypt, Jordan, March 13, 2018

To observers, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud’s flagship idea may seem overly ambitious – to build a mega-city known as Neom along the Gulf of Aqaba and the Red Sea that extends across the borders to Jordan and Egypt.

Indeed, its proponents are describing the planned 26,500 square kilometer city in almost messianic terms. “Neom is positioned to become an aspirational society that heralds the future of human civilization by offering its inhabitants an idyllic lifestyle set against a backdrop of a community founded on modern architecture, lush green spaces, quality of life, safety and technology in the service of humanity paired with excellent economic opportunities,” says Neom’s website.

That may be overstating Neom’s significance, but the project, which is yet to get underway, promises to be extremely important – not only for Saudi Arabia but for the region as a whole. For Riyadh, it is a central component of plans by bin Salman to ween the kingdom off of its dependence on oil exports and diversify the economy by emphasizing, for example, knowledge-based industries. Egypt and Jordan are reacting with enthusiasm to the plan, hoping it can give a boost to their depressed economies.

While bin Salman was in Egypt last week, the two countries set up a ten-billion-dollar joint fund to help develop the Egyptian side of Neom. Egypt has reportedly earmarked more than a thousand square kilometers in southern Sinai for the project. As part of economic integration the two countries are planning to build King Salman Bridge, linking them across the Gulf of Aqaba.

Mohab Mamish, chief of the Suez Canal Development Authority, is touting the north-east Egyptian city of Ismailia as the gateway for the Neom project, Emirati daily newspaper The National reported last week.

MEANWHILE, Jordanian officials are in the midst of discussions with their Saudi counterparts to identify projects to be implemented in Aqaba as part of Neom, The Jordan Times reported on Saturday.

In a related development, Reuters reported on Saturday that Saudi Arabia will work with Egypt and Jordan to attract European cruise companies to operate in the Red Sea during winter season. The report said that Riyadh is negotiating with seven such companies and plans to build yacht marinas.

In the view of Yoram Meital, an Egypt specialist at Ben Gurion University, Neom “is seen by [President Abdul-Fatah] al-Sisi as a new space for more cooperation, for creating more Egyptian employment.”

“The idea of building a bridge, and around the bridge a modern commercial industrial zone, is seen by Egypt as a potential major boost,” he said.

For the Saudis – and for the Arab world – the economic integration would be a new departure. “The scale is unprecedented; and if it happens in the way that’s being discussed it would create a more integrated relationship among Egypt, Jordan and Saudi Arabia than in the past, and that’s new,” said Brandon Friedman, a Middle East specialist at the Dayan Center in Tel Aviv University.

But, Friedman added, leveraging its economic wealth to cement its influence has been a long standing component of Saudi policy. In the past it took the form of aid or loans; now bin Salman “is trying to directly link the economies of Egypt, Jordan and Saudi Arabia.”

“The Saudis see increased economic health for Egypt and Jordan as being in their own security interest,” Friedman said. “The more vulnerable Egypt and Jordan are, the more difficult it potentially [becomes] for the Saudis to stabilize the region. They are trying to create more dynamic economies in Jordan and Egypt as a means to creating a stronger, more stable moderate Sunni bloc in the region.”

Neom’s progress should be followed closely by Israel, especially since some of the sectors planned for the mega-project coincide with areas of Israeli expertise: energy and water, biotechnology, advanced manufacturing, and technological and digital sciences.

“Depending on how the project evolves and how Saudi relations with Israel evolve, given Israel’s relations with Egypt and Jordan, there is potentially a role for Israeli economic integration,” said Friedman. “If the Israeli-Saudi relationship revolves around its current trajectory, it would be natural to assume that at some stage there would be Israeli integration.

“If they are really going to develop this in desert areas of all three countries, you’d expect Israeli technology perhaps to have a role to play,” Friedman said.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9082

57 Muslim nations urged to besiege Israel

Erdogan’s Islamic newspaper demands ‘army’ be launched against U.S. ally in Mideast

Published: 17 hours ago

Recep Tayyip Erdoğan

A Turkish newspaper close to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his ruling party is urging 57 Islamic nations to build a joint army specifically to attack Israel, notes a new report in Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin.

The Middle East Media Research Institute reports the article appeared on the paper’s website under the title “What If an Army of Islam Was Formed against Israel?”

It was published shortly ahead of a summit of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, which has 57 members, MEMRI reported.

The article notes, MEMRI said, “that such a joint army will greatly exceed the Israeli army in manpower, equipment and budget, and presents statistics to prove this.”

“It also advocates establishing joint bases for the army’s ground, air and naval forces that will arrive from all over the Muslim world to besiege Israel, while noting that Pakistan, as the only nuclear country, has ‘a special status’ among the OIC countries,” the report said.

MEMRI explained that many of the major points in the newspaper article were “taken from the website of the Turkish SADAT International Defense and Consulting Company, which provides consultancy on defense and warfare, both conventional and unconventional, and on military organization, training and gear.”

“The company has an agenda of promoting pan-Islamic military cooperation. According to its mission statement, it seeks ‘to establish defense collaboration and defense industry cooperation among Islamic countries, to help the Islamic world take its rightful place among the superpowers by providing … strategic consultancy and training services to the militaries and homeland security forces of Islamic countries.’”

The article states: “It becomes evident that the member states’ [joint] military might greatly exceeds that of Israel. Moreover, in a possible military operation, this superiority [can] be realized on the ground by [setting up] joint military bases for ground, air and naval forces.”

It says that if the OIC member states “unite and form a joint military force, it will be the largest army in the world.”

“These countries’ total population is 1,674,526,931. The number of soldiers in active service in these countries is at least 5,206,100.”

The newspaper calls Israel “significantly inferior” and says that “this country, which attempted to occupy Jerusalem while surrounded by Muslim states” has a population of only about 8 million, while Istanbul alone exceeds 14 million.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9079

Science confirms Genesis Flood account, again

Oceans of water found deep within mantle of planet

Published: 14 hours ago

WASHINGTON – For the first time, scientists have corroborated with direct evidence that the Earth has oceans of water deep within mantle by actually recovering some trapped inside diamonds.

While at least three recent studies have found evidence to support the theory, what few scientists are noting is that the discovery of actual droplets of the water hundreds of miles deep below the Earth’s surface corroborates what the Bible said in the Genesis Flood account, note Christians who have been following the latest research.

The latest study by University of Nevada Las Vegas geo-scientist Oliver Tschauner and his colleagues who found traces of water trapped within diamonds pushed up to the surface by intense pressure.

The discovery is being hailed by other scientists as groundbreaking and surprising.

The study, “Ice-VII inclusions in Diamonds: Evidence for Aqueous Fluid in Earth’s Deep Mantle,” was published Thursday in the journal Science.

While in the jewelry business, diamond with any impurities hold less value, for Tschauner and other scientists, this flaw may hold the key to understanding the inner workings of our planet.

Tschauner studied diamonds found in China, the Republic of South Africa and Botswana that surged up from inside Earth.

“This shows that this is a global phenomenon,” the professor said.

Scientists theorize the diamonds used in the study were born in the mantle under temperatures reaching more than 1,000-degrees Fahrenheit. The mantle – which makes up more than 80 percent of the Earth’s volume – is made of silicate minerals containing iron, aluminum, and calcium among others. Until relatively recently, scientists were skeptical that water could be found there.

“These discoveries are important in understanding that water-rich regions in the Earth’s interior can play a role in the global water budget and the movement of heat-generating radioactive elements,” Tschauner said.

This discovery can help scientists create new, more accurate models of what’s going on inside the Earth, specifically how and where heat is generated under the Earth’s crust. In other words: “It’s another piece of the puzzle in understanding how our planet works,” Tschauner said.

Interestingly, Tschauner and his colleagues weren’t looking for water. Like most scientists and climatologists today, they were looking for carbon dioxide – thought to be the culprit behind the theory of global climate change. They didn’t find any.

“We’re still looking for it, actually,” said Tschauner.

The presence of water in diamonds suggests there is water-rich fluid in the transition zone between the upper and lower mantle, and even into the top of the lower mantle.

“This is really the first time that we see water at such depths,” says Oded Navon, a mantle petrologist at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem who was not involved in the new study.

Other recent studies, beginning in 2014, based on wobbles in the Earth’s rotation and other phenomena, have postulated the amount of water inside the mantle could be as large or larger than all the water found in the oceans on the surface of the planet. Studies have indicated the fluid may influence all sorts of geological processes, including the grinding of tectonic plates, the formation of volcanoes and the movement of Earth’s elements.

Last June, for instance, researchers examining the rumbling of seismic waves and performing lab experiments that mimicked the crushing pressures and extreme temperatures of Earth’s mantle, made the argument that a huge amount of water resides within the planet. Those findings, conducted by Yale University geophysicist Jennifer Girard, who was not involved with this study, appeared in the June 13 issue of Science.

In January 2017, another study, conducted by Zdenek Futera of the University College Dublin in Ireland and published in Earth and Planetary Letters postulated the mantle was filled with fresh water exceeding the amount of saline fluid found in all the Earth’s oceans. That study suggested the novel idea that the Earth was actually manufacturing water.

There was another similar study in 2014 led by Graham Pearson, a geochemist at the University of Alberta in Canada. He now believes there is more water inside the planet than on the surface.

These theories, now backed up by the first physical evidence, hold some world-shaking ramifications:

  • That far from Earth having a limited amount of fresh water for its teeming population, there may be an unlimited amount deep in the mantle;
  • That scientists can divert some attention from the urgent race to discover of water on other planets;
  • That scientists might want to reconsider their skepticism of the biblical Great Flood account in Genesis 7:11, which said the waters broke through the surface of the Earth when “all the fountains of the great deep [were] broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened.” Most scientists discount the notion that the Earth was ever flooded, despite the fact that 71 percent of the surface is covered by water today.
  • That the Earth’s water came from extraterrestrial sources – namely comets and asteroids, a common theory until this burst of new evidence of abundant water inside the planet.

“It is ironic that secularist scientists are still seeking to explain where the Earth’s water came from,” Andrew Snelling, Ph.D geologist from Australia and director of research for Answers in Genesis, told WND. “For many years now, they have endeavored to fill in the difficult-to-explain pieces of their ‘story’ about how our home Earth ‘just happened’ to become so habitable for life over the course of its supposed billions-of-years history. Secularists believe the Earth condensed from clumpy matter flung out of the solar nebula 4.56 or so billion years ago. It was thus originally a hot, molten blob that cooled. They used to suggest that most of the water came from inside this cooling Earth, but not enough to fill the oceans we have on the Earth’s surface today. A once popular theory was that comets (which are essentially large, dirty snowballs) collided with the Earth and deposited their water on its surface.”

But that explanation could not possibly explain oceans of water deep beneath the surface of the planet. With the new evidence for just that, a new explanation was needed.

“Of course, these same secularists and Bible skeptics say, as predicted in 2 Peter 3:3-6, that there never was a global flood on the Earth, even though it is still 70 percent covered in water, which averages more than two miles deep,” writes Snelling. “But ironically, they also say that, due to the many evidences of massive water erosion on Mars, there was a watery flood ‘of Biblical proportions’ on that planet in the past, even though that planet’s surface is dry today!”

Snelling, too, sees the recent studies as evidence of the biblical Flood account.

“The Bible’s description of that outbursting event is merely confirmed by the latest findings of the secular scientists,” he writes. “So, the waters that came from inside the Earth, combined with the waters in the original, created oceans to produce the Genesis Flood.”

Pastor Mark Biltz, the man who discovered the “Blood Moons” phenomenon and the author of the new book “God’s Day Timer,” called the earlier reports of the massive water supplies within the Earth “fantastic news.”

“Over and over again science is finally catching up to the Bible,” Biltz said. “The Bible says in the Book of Daniel that in the last days knowledge will be increased. Well, it seems the scientific community is waking up more and more to the truths of the Bible.”

He added: “The Bible is much like the ocean itself in that its depths are unsearchable and vastly unknown to man. In time, God has been revealing its hidden treasures for science to find. Long before, when scientists thought the world was flat or a cube held up elephants or turtles, the Bible declared in Job 26 that the Earth was just suspended in space and in Isaiah 40 that it was a sphere.”

Joseph Farah, founder of WND and author of “The Restitution of All Things: Israel, Christians and the End of the Age,” wrote about science’s evolving theories about water inside the Earth in that book and is revising and expanding his own observations for a future updated and expanded edition.

“Since massive amounts of water from inside the Earth were used by God to destroy the planet, and future biblical prophecies suggest ‘living waters’ from inside the Earth will restore the planet to its Garden of Eden-like beginning, what we are seeing in these new discoveries makes perfect sense,” he says. “In fact, I believe the ‘living waters’ we read about in the Bible are already present deep beneath the surface of the planet.”

Both Old Testament and New speak about something called “living waters.”

In Zechariah 14:8, a prophetic book it says: “And it shall be in that day, that living waters shall go out from Jerusalem; half of them toward the former sea, and half of them toward the hinder sea: in summer and in winter shall it be.” Farah says there is more detail on the flow of these living waters provided in Ezekiel 47 as waters rush out from under the threshold of the Temple in Jerusalem toward the east. This will not be trickle of water like we see today in the Jordan River. It will be river that cannot be passed over. It will run eastward and go down into the Judean desert and into the Dead Sea. “And it shall come to pass, that every thing that liveth, which moveth, whithersoever the rivers shall come, shall live: and there shall be a very great multitude of fish, because these waters shall come thither: for they shall be healed; and every thing shall live whither the river cometh” (Ezekiel 47:9).

“While we know these ‘living waters’ are of God and could be produced entirely supernaturally, we also know that God uses what He has created in the natural world for His own purposes. Could it be these waters are just waiting to break forth on His timing?” Farah posits.

A Christian thought leader who has long used the “living waters” metaphor is author, filmmaker and apologist Ray Comfort. Comfort, founder of the Living Waters ministry, welcomed the news of water within the Earth as further support for his Christian position.

“It’s beneath the intellectual dignity of most people nowadays to believe in the biblical account of anything,” he told WND. “This is because God, in His great wisdom, chose foolish things to confound the wise. The Bible is filled with stories that are an insult to anyone who is proud of heart, and God resists the proud and gives grace to the humble. The door of salvation is deliberately set low.”

He adds: “However, there is a massive amount of evidence to prove a worldwide flood. The main one being that 70 percent of the Earth is covered in water. That’s the kind of ultimate ‘duh.’ Or, for want of a better analogy, they can’t (or won’t) see the forest for the trees.”

“In Ezekiel 47:8-12 it talks about how the waters shall bring healing to the whole area,” he says. “Very soon the future will be upon us and mankind will stand in awe as the Creator of the Universe reveals Himself as the Grand Scientist!”

Another Christian minister who said he was not surprised by how science is catching up to the Bible is Bill Cloud of Shoreshim Ministries, the author of “Esau Rising.”

“Obviously, as a believer, discoveries such as these don’t surprise me,” he told WND. “Not only does it confirm my faith in the Bible is well placed but it also reveals that God uses those who tend to doubt His existence to prove that He does exist! I believe this is connected to a principle found in Proverbs 25:2: ‘It is the glory of God to conceal a thing; it is the honor of kings to search out the matter.’ In other words, sometimes God plays ‘hide and seek’ and those who investigating His creation are ‘it.’ If they keep searching, they are going to be continually stunned by what they find.”

He added: “In this case, that vast supplies of water are concealed beneath the earth’s mantle should come as no surprise to those who believe what the Bible has to say. Water covered the entire earth before God caused dry land to appear – that water had to go somewhere. The great flood was not brought about solely by rain falling from heaven but also because the ‘fountains of the great deep were broken up.’ When those waters abated, it is likely they returned to where they originated – deep within the Earth.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9077

Saudi Crown Prince Meets Senior Israeli Officials in Egypt: Report

By JNS March 11, 2018 , 7:00 am

“May Hashem grant strength to His people; may Hashem bestow on His people wellbeing.” Psalms 29:11 (The Israel Bible™)

Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia Mohammed bin Salman. (Kremlin)

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman met with senior Israeli officials during his visit to Egypt this week, the London-based Arab newspaper Al-Araby Al-Jadeed reported on Wednesday.

The report said the meeting focused on the normalization of ties between Israel and Saudi Arabia, and included the Kingdom’s commitment to the “deal of the century,” the Middle East peace plan being devised by the Trump administration.

Within that framework, Israel would take part in the unprecedented real estate venture being sponsored by the Saudis in the Gulf of Aqaba.

Crown Prince Mohammed first announced plans for the 26,500-square-kilometer (10,230-square-mile) zone at an international investment conference in Riyadh last October.

Officials say public and private investment in the area is expected to reach $500 billion. The mega-city would be built on Saudi territory on the eastern shore of the Red Sea near the border with Jordan, and connect to Egypt across the gulf via a bridge running through the island of Tiran.

Known as Neom—from the Greek prefix neo (“new”) and first letter of the Arabic word mostaqbal (“future”)—the mega-city is being billed as “the world’s most ambitious project,” intended to become a transnational city and economic zone.

The crown prince’s stated objective for the project is to wean Saudi Arabia, the world’s top crude exporter, off oil revenues.

According to the report, the prince is also applying immense pressure behind the scenes on Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas to be part of the American deal.

If an Israeli-Palestinian peace deal is struck, the Saudis will reportedly be the beneficiaries of considerable U.S. investments, among other things in the Neom project. In exchange, they will act as the American’s spearhead for implementing the peace agreement.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9075

Iran and Bahrain: Ancient Ambitions, New Tactics

BESA Center Perspectives No. 762, March 7, 2018

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: The Bahraini government has long claimed that Iran is encouraging the Shiite opposition, which is fighting for recognition and political change. This is not an empty fear. Tehran’s  push for hegemony in the archipelago is not a new phenomenon. However, unlike monarchic Iran, whose hegemonic drive focused on the international political-diplomatic arena, the Islamic Republic is working for change from within and is using both soft power and subversion.

Iran’s push for hegemony in the Persian Gulf is hardly new. It stems from geostrategic and geopolitical factors related to the region’s importance in all regards, from security to economic and trade aspects. At the same time, Iran’s hegemonic ambitions in Bahrain can be considered a special case given the fragile demographic-political makeup of the principality, in which a Sunni minority rules a Shiite majority that is fighting for its rights and its role in governing the kingdom. Tehran’s subversive activity is, of course, condemned by the ruling establishment, which has long relied on Saudi patronage.

In early March 2018, the Al-Arabiya network reported a major counterinsurgency operation by the Bahraini security forces that seized large quantities of weapons and arrested 116 suspects belonging to a terrorist network established by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC). This came on the heels of the reported arrest of 47 Bahraini citizens from three different terror cells working to destabilize Bahrain. Bahraini interior minister Sheikh Rashid bin Abdullah al-Khalifa pointed an accusing finger at the Revolutionary Guards, Hezbollah, and the al-Hashd al-Shaabi organization; these, he said, had trained, financed, and directed the terror cells. This was not the first time the Bahraini authorities had leveled such charges at the Iranians, who, they maintain, are working to subvert the Bahraini archipelago’s fragile balance of power in favor of the Shiite majority.

In a country where Shiites are about 70% of the population, the ruling establishment’s main charge is that Tehran is encouraging the Shiite opposition as it fights for recognition and political change. Members of the House of Khalifa accuse Iran of ongoing subversion in the archipelago, with the aim of destabilization and a change of government. For evidence, the Bahraini media highlight the numerous arrests of terror cells trained by the IRGC for the purpose of toppling the government. A mysterious explosion in Bahrain’s oil pipeline in November 2017 was also attributed to Iranian-backed elements. In addition, in March of last year, the Bahrain News Agency (BNA) reported the foiling of an attempted attack on senior officials, leading to arrests of suspects who had been trained in Iraq by the IRGC and Hezbollah. A month earlier the BNA reported on a wave of arrests that led to the exposure of several terror cells in the emirate.

The struggle between Iran and Bahrain predates the Islamic Republic. Monarchic Iran made a historically based claim to sovereignty over the archipelago, which it saw as an integral part of its territory. In Tehran’s view, the artificial separation created by a series of agreements between Bahrain and Britain (in 1861, 1880, and 1892), which put the principality under British patronage, stemmed from a weak governmental mechanism and not from historical reality. Tehran further claimed, on the same historical basis, that the 1951 Oil Nationalization Act, which was ratified in the Iranian parliament at the initiative of Prime Minister Muhammad Mosaddegh, also applied to the Bahrain Petroleum Company.

Britain’s departure from the Persian Gulf at the beginning of the 1970s resulted in geopolitical changes that directly affected Bahrain. After Bahrain declared independence in 1971, monarchic Iran and Saudi Arabia worked out arrangements for territorial control of the Persian Gulf. On the one hand, Muhammad Reza Shah Pahlavi assented to Saudi control of Bahrain and the Arab principalities; on the other, King Faisal bin Abdul Aziz recognized Iran’s role as guardian of the Persian Gulf. Moreover, during the Iran-Iraq War the House of Khalifa publicly acknowledged the House of Saud as its main patron. This dependence has continued – de facto – until the present, and was well evident in March 2011 when Riyadh sent its forces to Bahrain to shore up the Khalifa family’s rule. The Saudi move came in response to the civil unrest in the archipelago, which was seen as part of a chain reaction to the events of the so-called Arab Spring.

In the monarchical period, Iran used diplomatic channels to pursue its claims against members of the Arab League, then led by Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser; the League strongly opposed those claims. Tehran went so far as to threaten the Arab states that if they did not recognize its claim to sovereignty over Bahrain, it would institutionalize its ties with Israel – a threat that remained on paper only.

The current approach of the Islamic Republic is different. It entails working for change from within and focusing considerable effort on certain interrelated spheres of activity. The first sphere involves enhancing Iranian influence through the use of “soft power”: helping to establish culture and welfare centers, providing Islamic (Shiite) guidance, contributing to the building of mosques, and setting up Husseiniyat (community-religious centers for mourning and prayer over the death of Hussein in the Battle of Karbala in 680 CE). Most of the activity is carried out in neighborhoods with a sizable Shiite population. The aim is to attract people to religion and instill sympathy for Khomeini’s doctrine of velayet-e faqih, or the rule of the Islamic jurist. The effort to attract people to religion, which is an integral part of the soft-power model, helps in recruiting potential candidates for opposition movements.

The second sphere involves strengthening opposition elements who oppose the autocratic-tribal rule of the Khalifa family. The object is to create a governmental alternative and undermine the current government. In December 1981, for example, the organization al-Jabha al-Islamiya li-Tahrir al-Bahrain (the Islamic Front for the Liberation of Bahrain) made a failed attempt to topple the monarchic regime and replace it with a theocratic regime led by Hadi al-Modarresi. Born in Iraq and a scion of a family of Shiite clerics, Modarresi became active in Bahrain after fleeing an arrest warrant issued against him by the Baath regime. According to the researcher Hassan Tarik al-Hassan, Modarresi not only drew inspiration from the doctrine of velayet-e faqih but received support from envoys of the revolutionary regime. After the coup was foiled, a number of Iranian diplomats were indeed expelled from Bahrain.

The 1990s saw another putsch attempt in Manama. The Bahraini opposition, which called for restoring the constitution (not in force since 1975) and granting equal opportunity to all citizens, ratcheted up its struggle. Protests intensified, and in 1996 the government revealed a further attempt to overthrow the regime and replace it with an Iranian-style Islamic republic. Bahrain’s state television claimed the rebels had admitted belonging to the group Hezbollah al-Bahraini, which was supported by Iran and inspired by Hezbollah al-Hijaz – which, in turn, was active in Saudi Arabia and was blamed for the Khobar Towers terror attack on American soldiers that same year.

The Bahraini government also drew a link between the presence of Sheikh Isa Ahmed Qassim in the Iranian city of Qom (for theological studies) and the 1996 coup attempt. That allegation was not proved, and Isa Qassim was allowed to return to Manama in 2001. Today he is considered the spiritual leader of al-Wefaq, the largest Shiite opposition movement in the kingdom. However, al-Wefaq (whose operative leader is Ali Salman) was outlawed in June 2016, and Isa Qassim’s citizenship was revoked a week later.

The third sphere is a direct extension of the second and reflects changes in the Iranian approach that were largely impelled by the Saudi-led forces’ March 2011 invasion of the archipelago to quell the agitation there. This sphere draws inspiration from the model used in Iraq and involves setting up a network of underground cells with operatives who have been trained outside Bahrain, while maintaining internal compartmentalization. Individuals seen as capable of leading the cells have been sent for operational training and further theological study, all under suitable cover so as to evade the authorities.

Researchers Michael Knights and Matthew Levitt note that Iran often infiltrates people and weapons into Bahrain by sea. For this purpose, Tehran makes use of speedboats, which are an important part of the IRGC’s doctrine of maritime warfare. According to reports of the Bahraini authorities, the largest of all the underground organizations appears to be Saraya al-Ashtar. Other groups include Saraya al-Mukhtar, Saraya al-Muqawama al-Sha’biya, Saraya Waad-Allah, and Saraya al-Karar. Despite their different names, these groups appear to operate under a single umbrella based in Tehran. In sum, since the founding of the Islamic Republic, the regime has worked tirelessly to spread its revolutionary ideology to the Muslim world. Since Bahrain’s demographic makeup provides fertile ground for promoting this worldview, Iran seeks to boost its influence in the principalities whether through soft power or support for opposition groups and the training of militant organizations that serve as proxies. Manama’s complaints about ceaseless subversion on Iran’s part are therefore far from baseless.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9073

Bigger threat than BREXIT: Italy’s populist drive to quit the Eurozone would DEVASTATE EU

ITALY leaving the European Union and the Eurozone would be a “disaster” for the bloc from both a political and economic perspective, as it could lead to a turmoil in the financial markets and the departure of more countries, experts have claimed.

By Alice Scarsi

PUBLISHED: 11:05, Fri, Mar 9, 2018 | UPDATED: 13:08, Fri, Mar 9, 2018

The shocking outcome of the election that took place in Italy last Sunday has paved the way for populist parties Lega and Five Star Movement, which together gathered more than 50 per cent of the votes.

Both the forces are eurosceptic and have in the past promoted the idea of pushing Italy outside of the EU and the eurozone.

Experts claim the possibility of a so-called Italexit would be devastating for the EU, which would see a second country leaving its borders in less than two years.

Lorenzo Codogno, former general director at the Treasury Department of the Italian Ministry of Economy and Finance, thinks Italy exiting the European Union would lead to a “storm in the markets”.

He said: “Italy is a big country, the third-largest national economy in the eurozone and one of the six founding members of the bloc.

“If it left the Union, there would be a storm in the markets, Italy would suffer but Europe would also be hugely affected.

“Italexit would be something very difficult to manage for the EU, so the bloc would do anything to make the country remain.”

Market analyst and CEO at Explain The Market Guy Shone thinks that Italexit would highlight the divisions within the EU, although he sees an exit of Italy too dangerous for a country with such a fragile banking system.

He said: “If Italexit were to happen, I think it would be reasonable to imply that the EU in its current form would be under threat and would be failing to prove its essentiality.”

Leaving the eurozone would be even more difficult than the process undertaken by the UK of leaving the European Union.

Whereas Britain has kept the pound, Italy uses the euro, which would make an Italexit a business complicated enough to threaten the survival of the single currency.

Mr Codogno said: “Leaving the eurozone poses a much greater problem than walking out of the bloc.

“While it was an established procedure to leave the EU, there isn’t anything like Article 50 that allow countries to opt out.”

The financial difficulties that would arise from Italexit for Italy itself lead Mr Codogno to think that the process is still far from becoming a reality.

He said: “These newly-elected eurosceptic parties might soften their positions once in power and change their attitude as concrete financial problems, such as a financial crisis and the need of a new currency, would pile up with an Italexit.

Austria: The hard-Right Freedom Party (FPO) has previously been accused of xenophobia and racism

“Nevertheless, the populists’ stance may cause severe problems, and if the will of the people is strongly in favour of an exit, they could have to act accordingly.”

In 2014, Five Star Movement founder Beppe Grillo proposed a referendum that would have questioned Italians on the possibility of leaving the eurozone.

Two years later, the party decided to set aside the referendum for the moment and to work at changing the Union from within.

In September 2017, Five Star political leader Luigi Di Maio said: “We have presented a seven-point programme to the European Parliament on the euro, with a referendum on the single currency as the final point.

“If the attitude is one of openness, we are willing to take part in a discussion on changing the rules of the game.”

The Standard Eurobarometer, which analyses the mood of European citizens towards the Union, in November signalled that that only 58 per cent of Italians were in favour of the euro, the lowest percentage recorded among all the members of the EU.

The once europhile nation has changed its attitude towards Europe following the financial crisis which hit the country in 2008 and fears over illegal migration.

The possibility of an alliance between the two eurosceptic parties seems momentarily impossible, as Five Star opened to a coalition with the europhile and centre-left wing Democratic Party while Lega leader Matteo Salvini has declared he is willing to enter Palazzo Chigi only with his centre-right wing allies Forza Italia and Brothers of Italy.

Still, Lega has already stepped up his pressure against the EU.

On Wednesday, a senator from the anti-establishment party said: “The EU is becoming more and more of a German empire.

“We are seeing German bureaucrats taking over the key positions in the EU institutions.

“We can understand why Britain wanted to escape from this prison.”

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9071

China Prepares For New Cold War With Massive Military Buildup

March 3, 2018 12:40 pm

(Zero Hedge) – As we have been documenting for quite some time, China has been not-so-quietly transforming itself into a serious threat to the West – beefing up its military to contend with the Washington’s air, sea, space and cyber weapons capabilities, while scrapping constitutional term limits for President Xi Jinping.

Since 2000, China has built more submarines, destroyers, frigates and corvettes than Japan, South Korea and India combined. To put this further into perspective, the total tonnage of new warships and auxiliaries launched by China in the last four years alone is significantly greater than the total tonnage of the French navy. –IISS

Analysts on both sides of the Pacific believe Xi’s aggressive military buildup and power grab have put Beijing on a direct course for conflict with Washington – with the heavy U.S. presence in the region setting the stage for a new Cold War.

In the Asia-Pacific, the dominant role of the United States in a political and military sense will have to be readjusted,” said Cui Liru, former president of the China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations, a think tank under the Ministry of State Security that often reflects official thinking. “It doesn’t mean U.S. interests must be sacrificed. But if the U.S. insists on a dominant role forever, that’s a problem.” Cui added that it was “not normal for China to be under U.S. dominance forever. You can’t justify dominance forever.”

China’s military objective is to break through the first chain of islands,” said Mr. Cui, referring to the waters beyond Japan and Taiwan where the Chinese military wants to establish a presence. –NYT

China’s navy is also deploying further from home, including Europe, while their base in the Eastern African country of Djibouti will enable more naval deployments. In terms of military computing technology, China has also set out on an ambitious course, as vast resources have been sunk into “extremely high-performance computing and quantum communications,” which, along with their weapons advancements and overall defense capabilities mean the country is no longer merely “catching up” with Western progress.

Meanwhile, Xi and other Chinese officials are of the firm belief that the United States is a superpower in decline – which will require China to step into the vacuum left behind.

It is now clear Xi’s agenda to rebuild an Asian order with China at its center is here to stay,” said Hugh White, a scholar and former defense official in Australia who has argued that the United States must be prepared to share power with China in the Asia-Pacific region.

I think Xi is impatient,” Mr. White added. “He wants China to be the predominant power in the Western Pacific. He wants to do it himself and for it to go down in history as his achievement. That makes him formidable.” –NYT

In a keynote speech to China’s Communist Party Congress last October, Xi promised to make China’s armed forces world-class by the middle of the century. In a January speech, Xi told thousands of Chinese soldiers to “neither fear hardship nor death,” during an inspection visit Wednesday to the People’s Liberation Army’s (PLA) Central Theater Command in northern Hebei province, according to the official Xinhua news agency.

Xi advised the military to continue improving upon its equipment, tactics, technology, and combat readiness by engaging in “real combat training.” The Chinese president – for life, spoke of the need to “create an elite and powerful force that is always ready for the fight, capable of combat and sure to win in order to fulfill the tasks bestowed by the Party and the people in the new era.”

He [Xi] has accelerated the military’s plans to build a blue-water navy, increased spending on weaponry in outer space, and established China’s first military bases abroad. He has promoted a global infrastructure program to extend Beijing’s influence and ignored Western concerns about human rights, which have diminished under the Trump administration. –NYT

Indeed, with the rollout of stealth jets, new high-tech naval artillery such as a “secret railgun,” and Chinese media reports bragging about aggressive maneuvers that “dare to shine the sword,” our trading partner to the West has made it perfectly clear that they intend on being a dominant global force, both economically and militarily.

Last November, we reported on a secretive hypersonic weapons program, which if successful would be able to hit the United States in under 14 minutes.

“China and the US have started a hypersonic race,” said Wu Dafang, professor at the school of aeronautic science and engineering at Beihang University in Beijing who received a national technology award for the invention of a new heat shield used on hypersonic vehicles in 2013.

And just two weeks ago the International Institute for Strategic Studies reported that China’s rapid military modernization is “remarkable,” and is set to challenge the West on several fronts.

“China’s emerging weapons developments and broader defence-technological progress mean that it has become a global defence innovator” says Dr. John Chipman, Director-General and Chief Executive of the London-based think tank. Of note, Chipman points out that China’s Chengdu J-20 low-observable combat aircraft is set to challenge America’s “monopoly on operational stealthy combat aircraft.”

The IISS report also notes that China’s expanding array of advanced guided-weapons projects, such as the PL-15 extended range air-to-air missile which could enter service this year. “This weapon appears to be equipped with an active electronically scanned array radar, indicating that China has joined the few nations able to integrate this capability on an air-to-air missile,” reports Chipman.

Trump and China

Trump has clearly changed his tune Chinese trade – declining to label them a currency manipulator last year because the “timing was bad,” and refusing to impose sanctions – however the U.S. President has committed to beefing up defenses with a new nuclear policy calling for the revitalization of the nation’s nuclear arsenal, while also reaching out to forge a stronger “Indo-Pacific” coalition with Australia, India and Japan in order to counter China’s rapid rise.

“Trump is obsessed with strategic forces,” said Shi Yinhong, a professor of international relations at Renmin University. “He is determined to maintain American military predominance in face of China’s strategic buildup. That will make the relationship more profoundly confrontational.”

Chinese analysts downplayed Trump’s efforts, however, noting that the United States has been unwilling to fund the projects. “In the short term,” said Shi, “China does not care about it because the ability to form a real coalition is limited.”

Meanwhile, many feel that President Trump will be pressured into taking a harder line with China going into the midterm elections – as Democrats have signaled that they will compare his campaign promises with his softline approach to a country he spent much of the 2016 election railing against.

“Now that it’s clear that President Xi isn’t going anywhere, getting tough on China is even more of an imperative,” said Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY). “If President Trump and Congress don’t crack down on their rapacious trade practices,” he added, “China will continue eating our lunch for years to come.”

And while Wall Street continues to broker lucrative investment-banking deals with the Chinese government, US manufacturers are growing increasingly frustrated at the prospect of competing with Chinese businesses who steal corporate secrets and regularly undercut their competition.

Manufacturers tend to be more fed up than Wall Street, which continues to do lucrative investment-banking business with the Chinese government. Technology companies have soured on China, though the market is so vast that they are still willing to consider concessions they would make nowhere else in the world.

The Trump administration reflects those fissures. Advisers like Gary D. Cohn, director of the National Economic Council, and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, who both worked at Goldman Sachs, have persuaded Mr. Trump to hold off on tough trade measures against China in the past. -WSJ

Infiltrating Universities

On the national security front, the Trump administration has been using “Cold War-like terms,” referring to China as a revisionist power that will try “to erode American security and prosperity.”

This extends to U.S. colleges, which according to FBI Director Christopher Wray, are underestimating the ability for Chinese students to gather sensitive national security intelligence. Public universities have long been instrumental in the development of both offensive and defensive capabilities for a multitude of US agencies such as the Department of Defense and DARPA.

“The reality is that the Chinese have turned more and more to more creative avenues using non-traditional collectors (of information),” Wray said during the Senate Intelligence Committee’s annual open hearings on the greatest threats to the country.

“The use of non-traditional collectors, especially in the academic setting—whether it’s professors, scientists, students—we see in almost every field office that the FBI has around the country, Wray said, adding “They’re exploiting the very open research-and-development environment that we have, which we all revere, but they’re taking advantage of it.’

Specifically, the FBI is “watching” programs at dozens of Confucius Institutes, funded by China’s Ministry of Education that are widely embedded within American universities and public schools to teach the Mandarin language.

The Confucius Institute program, which started operations in 2004, has been the subject of vast criticisms, concerns, and controversies during its international expansion. Many such concerns stem from the program’s close relationship to the Communist Party of China.

According to the South China Morning Post, some 350,000 Chinese students are actively enrolled at American universities, which is about thirty-five percent of the one million foreigners, said the Institute of International Education.

Bottom line: China’s rapid military buildup and commitment to becoming a dominant global force will require that the United States either cede power in Asia, or face another Cold War of steadily increasing temperatures. Keep in mind – times are good. The next recession, whenever that might occur, will most certainly push already-strained economic and military relations between the Washington and Beijing into uncharted territory.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9069

Pieces For Apocalyptic War Have Been Moved Into Place: Kick-Off Of All-Out, Biblical War Awaits Just The ‘Trigger Event’

– Who Financed The Rise Of Islam? ‘Islam Is The ‘Enforcement Arm’ Of The New World Order’

Submitted to All News Pipeline by Pastor Dick Carmack

As you study your bible you will see no mention of an end-times war with an Asian power located to the northeast of Israel. Instead, the biblical Islam/Israel wars are all centered in the Mid-East. The next major conflict is called “Gog-Magog” and the pieces are falling rapidly into place. Bill Salus’ “Psalm 83 War may also be part of the equation.

The King James, Ezekiel 38 references a power from the “north parts” in relation to Israel, some other translations, seeking specificity try to say “the uttermost parts of the north.” Some say “far north,” “recesses of the north” and one says “inmost north.” The Hebrew calls it “sides of the north.” None however use “east” in relation to “north.” Let’s just call it “north.”

That effectively rules out Korea or China at least until the “kings of the east” ride later for Armageddon.

Most commentators think the invading power of Ezekiel 38 is Russia. A lesser number argue that Turkey fits the description better. Considering the present maneuverings, Turkey is rattling their sword more than Russia and seems to be the likely candidate. Does Russia even have an interest in the area? Certainly. Russia is a major supplier of natural gas to Europe. Proposed competing pipelines in the mid-east are the igniting factors in the Syrian-ISIS conflict and Russia has a direct interest in controlling the outcome. She would also like to become a sea power in the Mediterranean. Russia, however, suffers from a lackluster economy, only a fraction the size of the American economy and is limited in what it can actually accomplish.

Nevertheless, a major war, perhaps a world war waits in the wings. The players are lining up, the kick-off is near and we ask, “What will be the trigger event for the biblically predicted Gog-Magog event?” Only God knows for sure but from here it looks like Iran will push the envelope a little too hard and Israel will respond overwhelmingly, perhaps with a preemptive strike, to preserve themselves as a nation. After that all bets are off.

The nuclear facility located in eastern Iran (Elam) on the Persian Gulf may play a pivotal part in the coming war because if this ancient enemy of Israel, going back to the time of Abraham, is hit the entire region may explode. To complicate it further Iran’s Elam nuclear plant is reportedly sitting on a geologic fault line. If a major earthquake were to occur with the plant being damaged or destroyed all sorts of fall-out could result. If the earth moves will Israel be blamed for that?

Like it or not, the Israel haters (who argue Israel’s importance is exaggerated) will have to admit the attention of the world is centered on this small patch of land on the eastern Mediterranean. So is the Bible’s. While our media beats the drums for continual fear of a nuclear exchange between the United States and North Korea, or perhaps China and Russia, that’s not what God’s word teaches. I’ll go with the Bible, confident that when the smoke clears the Scriptures will be shown once again to be infallible.

Ancient Elam, as mentioned above and in Genesis 14 was one of the invaders of the area later known as the Holy Land, taking captives and looting the cities of the plain. It was then, and is today a prime candidate for the end-time wars. The wars associated with the descendants of Abraham run deep and continue for centuries as the details play themselves out, pre-written as prophecy in the pages of the bible.

When Abraham sired an illegitimate child with the Egyptian handmaid Hagar, at Sarai’s urging (Gen 16), the first seed of a conflict that was destined to last for the ages began its sojourn. Seed number two was the miraculous birth of Isaac when Abram was 100 and Sarai his wife was 90. The two progeny of Abram (later Abraham) were destined to conflict from then on. One child was legitimate, the second child (Isaac). The first child (Ishmael), born out of wedlock with Hagar was illegitimate. From Isaac proceeded the Jewish people, from Ishmael came the Arabs which make up the founders and the bulk of the adherents of Islam. God has made it clear the Jews are His Chosen People, the world and its prince (Satan) stand with Islam. Be sure you are on the winning side because there is no doubt as to how it will all end.

As we watch the end-time players, we notice that Islam has obviously become the chosen enforcement arm of the New World Order. The money people, all over the world, not just in New York, need to have a group of thugs to enforce their will, thus we see an Islamic invasion of the entire world. The stage has been set, the players are in place and the final moves are in the process of implementation. The only question remaining is will the Globalist crowd be successful now, or later? Because, the Bible clearly teaches at a certain point a world government will be administered through a group of ten “kings” (Dan 7:24; Rev 17:12) or political hacks for Antichrist.

Da 7:24 And the ten horns out of this kingdom are ten kings that shall arise: and another shall rise after them; and he shall be diverse from the first, and he shall subdue three kings.

To further complicate the incentives of the mid-east players is the desire of Russia to extend its territory farther south for more access to the Mediterranean Sea. Having lost much of its prestige when Reagan was successful in tearing down the Berlin Wall, a move that hastened Russia’s fall, since then the Kremlin has struggled to regain its once strong position as a world player. Many however believe Russia to be a paper tiger.

Despite its apparent power, much of it may simply be drama. Take for example last week’s announcement of an “unstoppable atomic missile.” Many have noted there were no pictures of the actual missile, simply an animation that may have been taken from a 2007 YouTube video. This leads to other information that much of Russia’s power may just be bluster. Check out the story at this link.

Such bluster leads us to believe when push comes to shove for the Gog-Magog invasion Russia may well take a back seat with Erdogan’s Turkey being the main player from “the north quarters.”

The second, and larger reason war between Iran and Israel is next is the “Trump Plan” being touted, and soon to be “revealed” that calls for a Palestinian State on the West Bank (of the Jordan) with its capital in East Jerusalem. Trump’s plan may fly with the Palestinians, but it will not fly with the religious Jews and if it somehow gets over those hurdles, God Himself will take care of the problem because He says clearly in the third chapter of Joel that if they do “part” Jerusalem, that will bring on the war to end all wars,

Joe 3:2 I will also gather all nations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat, and will plead with them there for my people and for my heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations, and parted my land.

Yes, Gog-Magog and Armageddon may be separate wars, then again Gog may morph into Armageddon. We do know certain things, particular conflicts are going to happen, the timing of all of them however is very uncertain. The point of this article is that war with Korea at this time does not fit into the prophetic plan, war between Israel and Islam does.

WHO HAS FINANCED THE RISE OF ISLAM?

Regarding the relative sudden emergence of Islam popping up all over the world and taking a major role in world politics can only be accounted for by an amazing amount of money being spent buying off otherwise somewhat rational politicians. One such is Germany’s Angela Merkel (plus the European Union in general) completely losing her mind in throwing open that country’s borders to the invasion of an unwashed, uneducated mass of insane humanity called Islam, descending on the civilized world from the Mid East.

It just does not compute that the world’s politicians have suddenly, collectively lost their minds in throwing open their borders to Islam. The Bible says the love of money is the root of all evil and the most logical explanation is that a few billion dollars have been printed out of thin air and used to buy the allegiance of world leaders in pushing an Islamic invasion on the world. Both the Europeans and Islam will do the bidding of their Money Masters, the driving force of the push for world government. As many are prone to say, “Follow the money.”

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9067