Tag Archives: Middle East

Pushing Russia

Push Russia out of whole of Ukraine, says Truss

BBC, April 28, 2022

Event

Russian forces must be pushed out of “the whole of Ukraine“, the Foreign Secretary Liz Truss has said. In a keynote speech in London, Ms Truss said victory for Ukraine was now a “strategic imperative” for the West. This amounts to the clearest statement yet of Britain’s war aims which have, until now, been limited to stating that President Putin‘s invasion of Ukraine

“must fail and be seen to fail”.

She said Western allies must “double down” in their support for Ukraine.

“We will keep going further and faster,”

Ms Truss said,

“to push Russia out of the whole of Ukraine.”

This implies that Russian forces must leave not just the territory occupied in recent weeks since their invasion on 24 February but also those areas they invaded and annexed eight years ago, such as Crimea in the south and parts of the eastern Donbas region. Not all western powers may share Ms Truss’ ambitious target, fearing it is unlikely to be achieved either by arms or negotiation.

Comment

We are reading in this BBC headline the exact same headline written in the Bible 2500 years ago in the book of Daniel.

In the WWW for over a decade we have been saying that Daniel 11 verse 40 – which reads

“at the time end of the end the king of the south shall push at him”

should be interpreted like this…..

“at the time of the end the US / UK will militarily provoke Gog / Putin.”

And now we have the exact headlines before us. The UK is leading the way in “pushing” at Putin the ruler of Russia. We don’t know how far this push will go. But as each week passes the push gets stronger and Putin’s rhetoric increases too. The “push”(Hebrew word for “gore”) causes the king of the north (Russia itself) to descend into the Middle East – specifically into Israel and also Egypt.

And at the time of the end shall the king of the south push at him: and the king of the north shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, and with horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter into the countries, and shall overflow and pass over. (Daniel 11:40)

U.S. push for Ukraine “win” raises the stakes for Russia

The Economist April 29

Event

President Biden‘s request for an additional $20 billion in military assistance is intended to equip Ukraine for the next five months of war. It’s part of a broader mission to ensure “they have what they need to win this war,” an administration official told reporters.

“We gotta move at the speed of war,”

declared Lloyd Austin, America’s defence secretary, as he signalled a new, more intense phase in the West’s effort to help Ukraine repel Russia’s invasion. It involves providing more and heavier weapons, sustaining the effort for months and, above all, embracing the belief that Ukraine can now “win”. The Ukrainians, Mr Austin said,

“have the mindset that they want to win; we have the mindset that we want to help them win.”

What is more, he said,

“We want to see Russia weakened to the degree that it can’t do the kinds of things that it has done in invading Ukraine.”

Comment

The US is also “pushing” Putin. Biden is asking for an astonishing $20 billion in military assistance to Ukraine. This sort of money can help tip the balance. Last month, the United States Congress approved $13.6bn in assistance to Kyiv, but the Biden administration has said it already used much of the funds. So does this “push” from the king of the south immediately lead to Russia invading Israel?

There is a clue in the text that there is a slight gap between the push (in Ukraine) and Russia invading Israel. Notice the colon at the end of the phrase “push at him:” A colon denotes a time gap. Usually a fairly short time gap. After the colon the king of the north (Russia) comes down into Israel. It is in this colon time gap that the initial inner ring war happens around Israel. Russia won’t invade south until it is victorious (somehow or other) in Ukraine…

And at the time of the end shall the king of the south push at him: and the king of the north shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, and with horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter into the countries, and shall overflow and pass over. (Daniel 11:40)

Andy Walton

Weekly World Watch

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Preceding

Britain warns Russia over Ukraine

US bolsters Europe with 3,000 extra troops

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Additional reading

  1. Chemical warsite and Pushing king of the South
  2. Swallowing up Crimea, who is next
  3. Weekly World Watch 24th – 30th May 2015
  4. Russian President Vladimir Putin meeting with Pope Francis at the Vatican
  5. WWW on our position 50 years after Israel captured Jerusalem during the Six Day War.
  6. Prepare for Russian invasion of Ukraine, US warns European allies
  7. President Biden threatened to impose personal sanctions on President Putin if Russia moves to invade Ukraine
  8. Majority of US weapons promised to Ukraine in February delivered
  9. Sergey Lavrov dismisses Liz Truss meeting as ‘like talking to a deaf person’
  10. Putin’s ‘staged atrocity’ plan to justify Russian invasion of Ukraine
  11. Russia choose to start a war
  12. Putin’s Moves Toward War in Ukraine Show How Dangerous He Has Become
  13. Liz Truss does not see any evidence the Russians are withdrawing from border regions near Ukraine
  14. Is the war with Gog and Magog different from Armageddon?
  15. Surrounded by war crimes performing Russians
  16. The Guardian’s view on Ukraine for the first half of April 2022
  17. Russia vows to target British weapons as UK missile downs helicopter
  18. Pledges to send more military assistance to Ukraine and Russian warnings
  19. How long will it take before Conservative MPs will reach the conclusion that the prime minister needs to go?

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Related

  1. Daniel chapter 11
  2. Daniel 11
  3. The final battles and who will survive.
  4. a diverse beast
  5. a king of the north 
  6. Who Is the King of the North?
  7. a king of the south 
  8. a commander 
  9. a key to understanding 
  10. Putin Has Awakened the Beast
  11. a prince
  12. a beast like no other 
  13. He Shall Magnify Himself

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On this day in history: Burning of Holy Scriptures

On April 16, 2017 the radical Orthodox Jewish rabbi Shneur Odze burned a copy of the New Testament

On June 16, 1242, two dozen carloads of Jewish Talmud were burned in Paris

From 2017 April 17

UK: Rabbi burns New Testament as Passover ritual

On April 16, UK’s Jewish-owned online newspaper Daily Mail reported that Rabbi Shneur Odze burned a copy of the New Testament (Christian Bible canonized by Roman Emperor Constantine in 325 CE) in public as his Chametz (burning of useless or left-over food). He then posted images of it on social media on Good Friday.

Shneur Odze is a candidate for the mayor of British city of Manchester which has second largest Jewish community in the country after London. He is contesting the election as member of pro-Israel, anti-Muslim White Supremacist UK Independence Party (UKIP). Earlier this year, UKIP’s former leader Nigel Paul Farage (2006-2016) supported Donald Trump’s visa ban against seven Muslim-majority nations – claiming that there are several Muslim countries which have banned Israeli Jew tourists.

Shneur Odze claims that he found the Hebrew language copy of the New Testament in his synagogue left by some proselytizing Christian missionary.

Rabbi took it out into the street and set it alight, according to the report. He then posted photos of the book burning and wrote on Twitter:

Was wondering what I’d burn my Chametz with.”

Rabbi told reporters that he felt he had no choice but to burn the book because he did not want to pass on what he believes is false religion to someone else and said that throwing a religious text in the garbage was distasteful, especially because it also contains the Five Books of Moses (Torah).

No religious or political Jewish group condemned or apologized for Rabbi Shneur Odze’s anti-Christian act nor Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby dared to ask Manchester police to arrest the rabbi for insulting Church of England.

UK’s press called the Bible burning an act of a lone radical Orthodox Jew for whose action the world Jewry don’t need to apologize.

I bet my Canadian Looney if the religious fanatic had been a Muslim – every Jewish-owned newspaper and all British lawmakers would had demanded an apology from UK’s Muslim leaders and condemnation of the jihadi.

Christians, Jews and Hindus have a long history of burning religious scriptures of other faiths, especially Holy Qur’an. In Islam such action is considered blasphemy, a sin and serious crime.

On June 16, 1242, two dozen carloads of Jewish Talmud were burned in Paris on the orders of Pope Gregory IX and King Louis IX of France (here).

Christian Crusaders burned tens of thousands of copies of Holy Qur’an in Jerusalem (1099) and during the Spanish Inquisition (1492).

In December 2015, a Danish Jew, 42, was charged over burning a copy of Holy Qur’an and posting the image on his Facebook page with message:

Yes to freedom – no to Islam. Consider your neighbor: it stinks when it burns.

On May 20, 2008, the Associated Press reported that Jewish students in Israeli town of Or Yehuda burned several hundreds copies of New Testament in Hebrew.

Talmud commands Jews to destroy Christian religious books which is fully practiced in the only democracy in the Middle East.

In order to hide Talmud’s hateful teachings towards non-Jewish people and especially Christians – Rabbis have resisted its translation into languages other than Hebrew. In 2012, when Talmud was published in Arabic language for the first time – several pro-Israel Jewish groups lead by Abraham Foxman urged Jordanian government to take action to ensure that the Arabic translation of Jewish Talmud shouldn’t become a source of hatred of Jews and Israel among the Arabs.

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Gas supplies from the Gulf may come with a catch

The small Gulf state of Qatar sits atop the world’s largest bubble of natural gas. Even so, it cannot keep all the planet’s power stations running all at the same time. President Biden will meet Emir Tamim, Qatar’s hereditary and absolute ruler who was educated in British public schools, in the White House on Monday to ask him to send more gas if President Putin cuts off supplies. Qatar, home to US central command in the Middle East and with strong historic and financial ties to Britain, has indicated it does not mind helping the West out. But it is not quite as easy as that. Qatar has no major gas pipelines and so its exports are all LNG. The tiny Gulf state is already a significant supplier of to Britain, meeting just under a tenth of the country’s needs. But whereas most of Britain’s gas comes from the North Sea and Norway, about a third of Europe’s gas and more than half of Germany’s comes from Russia.

The world is frantically looking for new gas supplies as Russia could easily turn off the taps if war breaks out. The tiny gulf Arab state Qatar has the largest gas reserves so Biden is turning to this nation for help. This is incredibly interesting with Bible in hand. We often talk about the “king of the south” being the US / UK. But these nations are NOT south of Israel. But the Bible says the “king of the south” is made up of Sheba and Dedan, the merchants of Tarshish and the young lions. Tarshish is Britain and the young lions are her offspring – the English speaking nations – US, Canada, Australia etc. Sheba and Dedan are Gulf Arab states SOUTH of Israel. The article above states that Qatar (Gulf Arab state in the area od Dedan) is home to the US central command in the Middle East. And so we see the “king of the south” powers coming together to try to counteract Gog i.e. the head of the king of the north. Events are aligning quickly….

Sheba and Dedan and the merchants of Tarshish and all her young lions] will say to you, “Have you come to plunder? Have you gathered your hordes to loot, to carry off silver and gold, to take away livestock and goods and to seize much plunder?”’(Ezekiel 38:13)

Andy Walton

 

Please click on the red button below to download as the usual powerpoint.
Or click the blue button to download as a PDF.

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Iran’s days of setting Middle East on fire are over

Israel will no longer allow Iran to continue its aggression with impunity, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett warned on a visit to the IDF Northern Command on Tuesday.

“Iran already knows the price that we exact when someone threatens our security,”

he said.

“The Iranians need to understand that it is impossible to sit peacefully in Tehran and from there ignite the entire Middle East. That is over.”

The prime minister spoke of Israeli efforts to bring the international community to its side against Iran, including sharing the intelligence information showing Iran was the perpetrator, but said that

“we also know how to act alone.”

Bennett also criticized the European Union for sending Enrique Mora, the EU coordinator for the Iran nuclear talks and deputy secretary-general of the EU’s foreign ministry, to attend the inauguration this week of Iran’s incoming-President Ebrahim Raisi.

Israel is extremely concerned about what Iran might do next as the new hardline president of Iran, Ebrahim Raisi, takes control and is sworn in this week.

“Raisi is the most extreme Iranian president of them all, and the competition is tough,”

Israel’s prime minister Bennett said.

“I call on the EU: One cannot talk about human rights and simultaneously honour a murderer, a hangman, who has eliminated hundreds of opponents of the regime.”

The new Iranian president has been nicknamed “the Butcher of Tehran” because of the former judge’s role in the execution of thousands of Iranian dissidents.

The Bible says that although Israel’s immediate enemies (backed by Iran) will be destroyed in the initial inner ring war – Iran itself survives to join with Russia in the outer ring war that invades Israel. That army is destroyed by God with hail and fire.

I will execute judgment on him with plague and bloodshed; I will pour down torrents of rain, hailstones and burning sulfur on him and on his troops and on the many nations with him. And so I will show my greatness and my holiness, and I will make myself known in the sight of many nations. Then they will know that I am the Lord.’ (Ezekiel 38:22-23)

> Read more in the  Andy Walton’s Weekly World Watch

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The Iranian American Frieda Afary looking with (republican?) American eyes at Iran

We wonder where the Iranian American Frieda Afary  gets it from that it would be

leftists and so-called socialists around the world who support the Iranian regime as “anti-imperialist” or refuse to criticize it.

Lots of leftists and communists groups are totally against the Iranian regime and any form of oppression of citizens in general. We do know that there are several by Americans “so called leftists” or “communists” are doing good work to support people in Iran and Afghanistan and even are working hard to get them out of the hands of the Islamic murderers.

Frieda Afary should also wonder who is helping a lot of the protesters in Iran, Afghanistan and Iraq. the “leftists” and “communists” are bringing slogans on the streets like:

“Down with Dictatorship.”, “Down With Khamenei”, “We Don’t Want An Islamic Republic”, “The People Want the Regime to Fall.”

InIran: A New Wave of Mass Protests and StrikesFrieda Afary for the rest of her wrong remark (perhaps part of her American citizenship and paranoia for everything that seems “social”) seems to bring a very good overview of the terrible situation. She also seems to overlook that there are leftist groups who support the people and not the regime, even though she brings the words of a statement of solidarity by the Tehran Bus Workers’ Syndicate:

“The lack of water in Khuzestan today is rooted in the unprofessional, rapacious and profit-centered policies of the prior decades of capitalism in oil extraction and use of water for the steel industry, the income from which does not go to the people.  These insatiable policies have deprived the people of Khuzestan of safe drinking water.  Water is shut off for long hours and it is lacking for basic needs.  Farmers and cattle growers have also been damaged and lost their livelihoods.”  (https://www.akhbar-rooz.com/%d8%b3%d9%86%d8%af%db%8c%da%a9%d8%a7%db%8c-%d8%b4%d8%b1%da%a9%d8%aa-%d9%88%d8%a7%d8%ad%d8%af-%d8%b3%d8%b1%da%a9%d9%88%d8%a8-%d9%88-%da%a9%d8%b4%d8%aa%d8%a7%d8%b1-%d9%85%d8%b1%d8%af%d9%85-%d8%ac%d8%a7/)

She writes:

The latest protests have followed a series of nationwide strikes of temporary contract workers in Iran’s oil and gas industry which is also heavily based in Khuzestan. The strikes which began on June 19 and have spread to a hundred production sites, are demanding permanent employment status, a $500 monthly wage, safe working conditions and the right to organize and be free of police surveillance. Haft Tapeh sugar cane workers on strike in Khuzestan are also asking for COVID vaccination and expressing solidarity with protests against the lack of water.

In her interesting article she further looks at:

  • Economic Crisis and COVID Pandemic
  • Women Prisoners and Afghan Refugees
  • Iran’s Continuing Regional Ambitions and U.S. Imperialism’s “Solutions”
  • Needed Progressive Solidarity with Struggles inside Iran

Any effort to engage in solidarity with the struggles inside Iran begins not only with calling for the removal of U.S. sanctions and an end to Israel’s attacks, but also simultaneously holding the Iranian regime accountable for its repression and exploitation of the people and environment of the region.

Frieda Afary should know that several “leftist”, “socialists” and “communists” groups go against all the American interferences in the Middle East and urge for the immediate release of political prisoners, expressing solidarity with striking workers, feminist and environmental struggles, oppressed ethnic, sexual and religious minorities, and demanding Iran’s withdrawal from Syria, Iraq and an end to its interventions in Afghanistan, Lebanon and Yemen.

Please find the article to read > Iran: A New Wave of Mass Protests and Strikes

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Iran’s water crisis stokes another round of protests

The 42 years of Islamic fundamentalism proved that this so religious system is as corrupt like any other system where people in power try to earn as much they can for themselves (at the cost of the population).

We shall have to face not only political refugees but soon more ecological refugees.

Democracy for Iran

By Struan Stevenson

July 26 (UPI) –Prior to the 1979 revolution, Iran’s population of 34 million people relied on a stable water supply, sourced from millennia-old underground canals and aquifers. The Iranian revolution, hijacked by the mullahs, changed all that.

The theocratic regime handed control of the nationalized water industry — and indeed over 80% of all other business, industrial and service sectors — to the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps, the regime’s equivalent of the Gestapo. The IRGC answers directly to the elderly supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. It pays no tax and corruptly siphons vast financial resources into its own pockets and into financing proxy wars and terrorism across the Middle East and further afield.

The IRGC members use oil revenues stolen from the Iranian people to race ahead with the clandestine construction of a nuclear weapon and ballistic missile delivery systems capable of reaching Tel Aviv, Israel…

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We and the other – unitary idealism and tribalism

Pietro Jun questions why speaking up against unitary idealism/tribalism is important.

We think we all have a responsibility to the world, i.e. nature, animals and other human beings. We can and may not keep silent about certain matters. It is our personal duty to react to certain events. No person should ever allow human rights to be offended.

Pietro Jun writes:

Pietro JunFrom time immemorable, the will to power of single-mindedly aiming, nations with narrow views of the political normative have sought and acquired power.

There was technical progress, for it made the work and communication easier – but the hurt and separation were and are bigger. China’s Uyghur and Tibet oppression, Russia’s attempt at cultural and geographical annexation of Ukraine, Nazi Germany’s evil, Japan’s imperialism and the ongoing attempts at the revival of army, Great Britain’s fiascos in the middle east. Difficult history is maybe more on the way. But we can do something about it. I think for once so can I. {Speaking up against linguistic totalitarianism/A letter of gratitude.}

In all this, what is important is that each human being should accept the other being equal and/or not being the same like him, everybody having the right to think differently and to have a different culture and language. No matter which language we speak as long as we can find a way to communicate in a friendly supportive way.

We shall not be able to avoid ‘genuine critics’ that would keep many problems at bay. It is worth the risk of being pushed down and downtrodden on, at times ridiculed.

Jun finds that we should

Stand for the little intricacies of your own language; your own values that keep you humane. However little of use it may seem or it in actuality is. {Speaking up against linguistic totalitarianism/A letter of gratitude.}

In an other posting he reminds us of the words of The Flower by Kim Chun-soo

We all long to be something.
You, to me, and I, to you,
long to become a gaze that won’t be forgotten. {I am a gesture}

Jun finds that

There are millions of different forms of life in the untraceable edge of universe which makes us seldom think that we are one or none. But what I know for sure is that we are one, to some one, and as long as the rules of universe do not alter themselves, we will keep on gravitating towards those whose existence we had no knowledge about. And eventually die out as one. {Stardust and photographs}

But it is up to us to open ourselves to others. We should allow others to come to know us better, without us imposing our ideas and laws onto them, but willing to get to know them better and to give our love too.

When we find love we have to keep it close and treasure it. We also should treasure the rich cultures around us and see the greatness of all that diversity, it’s giving us the opportunity to enrich ourselves and others.

> Please continue reading: Speaking up against linguistic totalitarianism/A letter of gratitude.

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Preceding posting

My Multi-Cultural Childhood Could be the Answer to Racism & Xenophobia

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Analysis: Will religious freedom flourish in post-treaty Middle East?

Could peace between the Jewish State and a Sunni Arab powerhouse portend increasing religious freedom across the Middle East?

By Lela Gilbert, World Israel News

On August 13, World Israel News reported that the United Arab Emirates and Israel have agreed to establish full diplomatic ties as part of a deal to halt Israel’s extension of sovereignty over Judea and Samaria. The announcement makes the UAE the first Gulf Arab state to do so and only the third Arab nation to have active diplomatic ties to Israel.”

The announcement was made by President Donald Trump.

“Now that the ice has been broken I expect more Arab and Muslim countries will follow the United Arab Emirates.”

So President Trump, who negotiated the agreement, predicted.

There was, of course, debate in Israel and beyond about whether the agreement had cast aside annexation of biblical Judea and Samaria for the sake of an elusive peace gesture. At the same time, there was celebration among young Israelis, embracing new hopes for harmony with the Arab world.

Despite the UAE flag emblazoned in lights across Tel Aviv’s city hall, heated discussions on the subject continue between American and Israeli, religious and secular, conservative and liberal Jews and their supporters.

‘Sarsour has no role in the campaign whatsoever,’

Biden spokesman says after DNC address

Meanwhile, conversations about the religious implications of the agreement have extended well beyond Jerusalem and Abu Dhabi. Could peace between the Jewish State and a Sunni Arab powerhouse portend increasing religious freedom across the Middle East?

Pope Francis

Pope Francis is welcomed by Abu Dhabi’s Crown Prince , Feb. 4, 2019. (AP/Kamran Jebreili)

For several years, the United Arab Emirates has been painting a self-portrait not only of a super-wealthy Arab state, but also as a haven of religious freedom. And since Pope Francis’ dramatic visit there in February 2019, much has been said to affirm that these efforts amount to more than a photo-op.

Deutche Welle (DW) described the Pope’s visit as an historic milestone, reporting

 “More than 130,000 worshipers flocked to the Zayed Sports City Stadium in the UAE capital, Abu Dhabi, on Tuesday to celebrate a Mass with Pope Francis… He is the first leader of the Catholic Church ever to set foot on the Arabian Peninsula, the birthplace of Islam.”

If peace between Jews, Muslims and Christians is possible in one small Arab country, why couldn’t it extend further? Reflecting on this possibility, prayerful optimists have lifted their eyes heavenward while world-weary cynics continue to shake their heads.

On the optimistic side, DW explained that at the start of his papal visit, Pope Francis met with Crown Prince Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and other UAE leaders at the presidential palace.

“He also signed a document promoting ‘human fraternity’ with Sheikh Ahmed el-Tayeb, the grand imam of Egypt’s Al-Azhar, the seat of Sunni Muslim learning. During an address to a gathering of interfaith leaders, he called for an end to wars in the Middle East, including in Yemen and Syria. All religious leaders had a ‘duty to reject every nuance of approval from the word war,’ he said.”

But, as less-than-upbeat observers will quickly note, religious freedom in the Middle East often ends where radical Islam begins, whether that dangerous version of ideology is rooted in Shiite or Sunni tradition. In fact, in its 2020 Country Report, the U.S. Commission on Religious Freedom (USCIRF) declared that Egypt, Iraq and Turkey were included on its “Special Watch List,” while Iran and Saudi Arabia continue to be “Countries of Particular Concern” (CPC).

Both had either permitted or committed egregious violations of religious freedom. Indeed, the violent nature of conflicts in the Middle East, including genocides of Christians, Yazidis and other minorities, tend to discourage even the most enthusiastic proponents of dialogue and reconciliation.

Still, efforts for peace – whether motivated by economic promise or intended to create a bulwark against Iranian and Turkish aggression – should not be disregarded. It is a region where churches are sometimes bombed or torched and surviving synagogues are broken relics of happier days — before the wholesale expulsion of entire Jewish communities.

Nonetheless, the UAE has begun a unique project intended to transform the marred image of Muslim, Jewish and Christian relations: a Multi-Faith Complex – including the first official synagogue in the country’s history.

“A church, mosque and synagogue will share a collective space for the first time, serving as a community for inter-religious dialogue and exchange, and nurturing the values of peaceful co-existence and acceptance among different beliefs, nationalities and cultures,” the committee overseeing construction of the complex said in a statement.

For years, Israel and the United Arab Emirates have been holding clandestine meetings. Now their newly revealed projects include both economic and defense opportunities to which both have contributed expertise and funding. Today, the inclusion of other Arab states in such endeavors is already under discussion, including Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and Sudan and more.

Sanguine regional conversations about peace and prosperity should never be silenced. Prayerful candles should always be lit by people of faith. Nevertheless, wary eyes keep their watch as Turkey’s President Tayyip Erdogan and Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei rage and rant about the Israeli-Emirati agreement’s betrayal of Islamic empire-building.

And while Abu-Dhabi’s construction of the Multi-Faith Complex prepares for its 2022 opening, deadly gunfire shatters quiet nights in Iraq, Syria and Lebanon, while rockets and explosive balloons continue to darken the sunlit skies above Israel.

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A genuine European Union to ensure welfare, security and democracy

We European citizens are worried and scared. The economic and financial crisis has impoverished many of us. Youth unemployment risks creating a lost generation. Inequality grows and social cohesion is in peril. The EU is surrounded by war and instability from Ukraine to Turkey, the Middle East and North Africa. The flux of refugees and migrants has become a structural feature we must address together, in a human and forward-looking manner. In many Member states we witness authoritarian tendencies and the rise of nationalist and xenophobic forces. Democracy and the core values of the European modern civilisation are under attack. The EU itself is questioned, although it ensured peace, democracy and welfare for decades.

We European citizens don’t want our national politicians to care only about their next local or national election. They ask for European solutions to European problems but then they act to render those solutions impossible or ineffective. They disregard sensible Commission proposals or fail to implement decisions already taken , including when agreed by all. They claim, one day, for Europe to do something and protest, the following day, Europe’s proposed actions.

As the anniversary of the signature of the EU’s founding treaties is approaching, a group of over 300 European academics and personalities are endorsing this appeal to relaunch European integration and inviting civil society, academia, young people and citizens to participate to the March for Europe in Rome on March 25.

Alberto Alemanno for VoxEurop

Signing of the Treaty of Rome, March 25, 1957.

Signing of the Treaty of Rome, March 25, 1957. – AP Images – Treaty of Rome, originally (1957–93) Treaty Establishing the European Economic Community, succeeded by (1993–2009) Treaty Establishing the European Community and (2009– ) Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union; also called, together with the Treaty Establishing the European Atomic Energy Community,

25 March 2017 is the day of the 60th anniversary of the Rome Treaties which have made the EU project the most successful experiment of peace and integration ever.

This date may go down history as yet another self-praising, boring, closed-door party of 27 EU leaders or as the germ of a first conscious, popular and patriotic European manifestation. A March for Europe – mimicking the one that took place in London in the aftermath of the Brexit vote – has been announced by the Union of European Federalists. Unfortunately, only the usual suspects – a few pro-European organisations – are behind this one-in-a-generation opportunity to show how many citizens of Europe support and share its ideals, values and lifestyles. Despite its high-potential in prompting a genuine, pan-European manifestation calling for a renewal of the EU project through an inclusive, constituent process, the risk that it may reveal a flop is dangerously high.

The appeal below intends to pierce the typical Brussels bubble currently surrounding the March for Europe, by broadening its audience to a much wider public. There has never been a better opportunity to federate – in a critical moment of its existence – the multitude of associations, movements and grassroots actors who believe in the European project. There has never been a better opportunity to make your voice heard and contribute to the emergent European public space. There has been never been a better opportunity to shape your history and that of the generations to come.

See you in Rome on 25 March. Help us spread the call below through the hashtag #MarchForEurope2017!

A genuine European Union to ensure welfare, security and democracy

We European citizens are worried and scared. The economic and financial crisis has impoverished many of us. Youth unemployment risks creating a lost generation. Inequality grows and social cohesion is in peril. The EU is surrounded by war and instability from Ukraine to Turkey, the Middle East and North Africa. The flux of refugees and migrants has become a structural feature we must address together, in a human and forward-looking manner. In many Member states we witness authoritarian tendencies and the rise of nationalist and xenophobic forces. Democracy and the core values of the European modern civilisation are under attack. The EU itself is questioned, although it ensured peace, democracy and welfare for decades.

We European citizens don’t want our national politicians to care only about their next local or national election. They ask for European solutions to European problems but then they act to render those solutions impossible or ineffective. They disregard sensible Commission proposals or fail to implement decisions already taken , including when agreed by all. They claim, one day, for Europe to do something and protest, the following day, Europe’s proposed actions.

We ask national politicians and the media to stop depicting integration as a zero-sum game, thus pitting nations against one another. In an interdependent world no nation can satisfy all of its citizens’ basic needs and appeals for social justice. In this context, integration and supranational government is a positive-sum game. Our European social model based on liberal democracy and a social market economy can only survive in a multi-level framework of government, on the basis of the subsidiarity principle.

Dutch passportEstonian passportWe European citizens are aware that globalisation is transforming the world. We need a European government to foster our common values and contribute to the solution of the global problems threatening humanity. The world needs an outward-looking cosmopolitan Europe to help build a more effective and democratic global governance to cope with climate change, peace, global poverty, and the transition to an environmentally and socially sustainable economy.

Seat

The European Central Bank (ECB; French: Banque centrale européenne) = central bank for the euro and administers monetary policy of the eurozone, which consists of 19 EU member states and is one of the largest currency areas in the world.

Phrygian cap on pole.svgWe European citizens recognise the EU as an incomplete Res Publica. It has a ridiculous budget (0.9 percent of GDP) and no financial autonomy from Member states, while its current competences are out of date for what is necessary to successfully answer the challenges of the current crises. It has a federal like legislative, judiciary and central bank. But democracy is the possibility for citizens to choose the government and make it accountable. For the Union to work and be democratic its decisions, including budget, foreign and defence policy, and the reform of the Treaties, should primarily be taken by a qualified majority representing the majority will of European citizens and states. The Commission should evolve into a fully-fledged government, setting and promoting a political agenda legitimated through elections. European parties should present their candidates to the Presidency at the European election.

The alternative is a directly elected President of the EU merging the Presidencies of the Commission and the European Council.

On 14 February 1984 the European Parliament adopted the Draft Treaty establishing the European Union, the so-called Spinelli Project, pointing towards a political union, which Member states disregarded. On 14 February 2017 we call upon the European Parliament, the only directly elected body of the EU, to take a new initiative to kick-start the EU on strengthened democratic basis. Talking about banking, fiscal, economic, energy, security, defence and political unions makes sense only within a genuine democratic European Union, with all those policies under a European government.

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Signing of the Treaty of Lisbon amending the Treaty on European Union and the Treaty establishing the European Community, in the Jerónimos Monastery of Lisbon, Portugal, 13 December 2007, which entered into force on 1 December 2009

On 25 March 2017 the Heads of state and government will celebrate the Treaties of Rome establishing the European Economic Community and Euratom in 1957. We call upon them to match the vision of the Founders. They should open the way to the re-foundation of the EU on the basis of the European Parliament proposal, and immediately exploit all the Lisbon Treaties’ instruments to strengthen EU institutions and policies, especially on foreign and security, economic and social policies.

We call upon the Europe’s youth, its civil society, workers, entrepreneurs, academia, local governments and European citizens to participate in the March for Europe in Rome on 25 March. Together we shall give the political leaders the strength and courage to push forward the EU to a new beginning. European unity is key to solve our common problems, safeguard our values and ensure our welfare, security and democracy.

This Appeal was drafted by Roberto Castaldi with Giuliano Amato, Yves Bertoncini, Stefan Collignon, Anthony Giddens, Ulrike Guérot, and Miguel Maduro. It is available in various languages for further adhesions at March for Europe with the list of signatures and the info on the March.

Marcus Ampe

March for Europe: in Rome on March 25

Flag of the European Union

English: Constituency for the European Parliam...

English: Constituency for the European Parliament election in 2009 Español: Mapa por el Elecciones al Parlamento Europeo de 2009 Français : Circonscriptions aux élections européennes en 2009 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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Preceding articles:

Human tragedy need to be addressed at source

60 years after creation of European Economic Community, Europeans skeptical about one of their biggest achievements this century

F: Une véritable Union européenne pour garantir le bien-être, la sécurité et la démocratie

D.: Eine echte Europäische Union die Gemeinwohl, Sicherheit und Demokratie gewährleistet

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Filed under Activism and Peace Work, Announcement, Economical affairs, Headlines - News, History, Juridical matters, Political affairs, World affairs

Sukkoth, Gog, Magog, Armageddon, a covenant and Jerusalem

Moadim L’Simcha (Appointed Times for Joy) and Shabbat Shalom dear readers!

The joyous holiday of Sukkoth (Sukkot or Feast or Tabernacles or Feast of Booths), one of the three Pilgrim Festivals of the Hebrew Bible, is observed on the Jewish calendar dates of 15-21 Tishrei and is immediately followed by the holiday of Shemini Atzeret and Simchat Torah. The final day of Sukkot is known as Hoshana Rabba (“Great Hosanna”) (In 2016 coming Monday and Tuesday) and with the eighth day should for Christians also be important, being it a day of Solemn Assembly, commemorating the completion of the annual cycle of readings from the Torah (the first five books of the Bible) and being called Simḥat Torah (“Rejoicing of the Law”). .

The seventh day of the festival of Sukkot, considered to be the final day of the New Year’s Divine “judgment” in which the year’s fate is determined; in addition to the Four Kinds taken on the preceding days of Sukkot, an additional willow is taken on this day; it is customary to stay up all night on the eve of Hoshanah Rabbah and study Torah.

During the week long festival of Sukkot (Tabernacles), the regular Parasha (Torah portion) for Shabbat is suspended, and a special Parasha pertaining to the holiday is read in synagogues around the world.

Readings for Shabbat Chol Hamoed Sukkot
Exodus 33:12–34:26; Ezekiel 38:18–39:16; Revelation 21:1–22:21

For lovers of God the Jewish reading for today is one which should concern all, being aware of the importance of the covenant made by the Most High.

“Behold, I make a covenant: before all your people I will do marvels, such as have not been done in all the earth, nor in any nation: and all the people among whom you are shall see the work of the Lord: for it is an awesome thing that I will do with you.”  (Exodus 34:10)

In this special Sukkot reading, Moses asks that God’s presence would go with Israel, and God agrees. The marvellous thing about God the Divine Creator is that He loves His creation so much, that when people ask Him to be with them and to go with them, God will do that. He is there for all who want Him nearby.
Encouraged by this positive response, Moses also asks to see God’s glory.  Once again, God graciously complies with his request and invites Moses to ascend Mount Sinai with two newly hewn stone tablets so that He can re-carve the Ten Commandments. Those mitzvah or commandments were given to be a guide for mankind, so that they could build up a good relationship with their Most High Maker.
It was there on that mountain that God revealed His glory to Moses in such a fearsome spectacle of power that God had to protect Moses from being destroyed by it.
“There is a place near Me where you can stand on a rock.  When My glory passes by, I will put you in an opening in the rock.  I will cover you with My hand until I have passed by. Then I will remove My hand.  You will see My back.  But My face must not be seen.”  (Exodus 33:21–23)
It’s clear that Moses, having experienced the power of the presence of God, understands that His presence is more than sufficient against any threat Israel might encounter inside or outside of the Promised Land.
This is a great prospect for God’s nation. We also know now that God promised Abraham that his seed and sons by faith, would come to live in the Holy Land. In the end all Jews, the children of Abraham, will find their Holy Nation there and find Jerusalem to be the capital of the nation of God’s people. They would be sent in exile and have to endure lots of problems throughout history, but there shall come a time when they shall be all united under God’s Kingdom. God will gather His People to their own land and the whole world shall come to know it.
The world shall have to come to hear that Israel shall be restored and that also others came to know the Law of God and shall be willing to live according the covenant also brought to them by the sent one from God, rabbi Jeshua, the son of man and son of God, who gave his life as a ransom payment for all sinners, so that all people could come back to God to be His children. He provided a new covenant, one of reconciliation.
But we should take heed, God has given a warning that terrible times shall come  over the world. The Restoration of Israel shall be challenged.
“This is what will happen in that day: When Gog attacks the land of Israel, My hot anger will be aroused.”  (Ezekiel 38:18)
In the Haftarah (prophetic portion) for this Shabbat Chol Hamoed (intermediate day of the festival) of Sukkot, the Hebrew prophet Ezekiel describes an end-time scenario in which formidable armies from the north, under the leadership of Gog, will challenge the restoration of Israel.
Gog (left) and Magog, wooden effigies in the Guildhall, London

Gog (left) and Magog, wooden effigies in the Guildhall, London – Courtesy of the British Tourist Authority

Gog is a chief prince living in the land of Magog (Ezekiel 38:2).  Many scholars believe Magog refers to Russia.  The invading land of Gomer is often believed to be Germany.

Several lands in the coalition army are easily identifiable: Iran (Persia), Northern Sudan (ancient Ethiopia or Cush), Libya (Put), and Turkey (Togarmah).
Last year at this time, Russia made significant moves into the Middle East, reportedly to fight against ISIS.  Last week, however, it negotiated its first “permanent” air base in the region at Khmeimim, Syria and its naval base in Tartus, Syria will soon become “permanent” as well.
Russia also recently installed its S-300 surface-to-air missile defence system in Syria and completed the transfer of the system to Iran last month.
In effect, Russia has become a major military broker in the region.  It is right now on the doorstep of Israel, and it plans to stay.
The nations mentioned in Ezekiel 38 will unite and come upon Israel “like a cloud that covers the land” for the purpose of looting the wealth that she has amassed in what was a desolate land only seventy years ago.
Yet, God will not abandon His People.  He will utterly destroy the coalition forces of Gog so that all nations will come to know the holiness of the Lord (Ezekiel 38:18–23).
The forces that come against Israel will be so large in their day of defeat that Gog’s weaponry will provide fuel for Israel for seven years (Ezekiel 39:9).
“They will not need to gather wood from the fields or cut it from the forests, because they will use the weapons for fuel.  And they will plunder those who plundered them and loot those who looted them, declares the Sovereign LORD.”  (Ezekiel 39:10)
Moreover, so many soldiers will die in this battle that it will take seven months for Israel to bury them all and cleanse their land (Ezekiel 39:12).

A man carries a Torah scroll that is protected by a silver Torah tik (case) during Sukkot at the Western Wall.

The Jews read about this end-time battle during Sukkot, because according to Rabbinic tradition, this war will be waged during the month of Tishri, the month in which the holiday of Sukkot (Feast of Tabernacles) falls.

Interestingly enough, the war that is described in Ezekiel is similar to the war described in the 14th chapter of Zechariah, the Haftarah reading on the first day of Sukkot.  And in Zechariah we learn that the Gentiles who survive the war against Israel will be required to keep Sukkot annually by coming up to the Holy City of Jerusalem to worship the Lord.
“Then the survivors from all the nations that have attacked Jerusalem will go up year after year to worship the King, the Lord Almighty, and to celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles [Sukkot].  If any of the peoples of the earth do not go up to Jerusalem to worship the King, the Lord Almighty, they will have no rain.”  (Zechariah 14:1617)
This should give us food to think about the matter of feasts and holidays we do have to partake.

Sukkot at the Western (Wailing) Wall.

 

 

Psalm 27 presents a clear connection between Sukkot and God’s protection of Israel and those who trust in Him:
“For in the day of trouble He will conceal me in His tabernacle [sukkah]; In the secret place of His tent He will hide me; He will lift me up on a rock.”  (Psalm 27:5)
The word translated here as tabernacle is the Hebrew word sukkah (סכה)When evil threatens God’s people, He will hide them in His sukkah, inaccessible from the enemy on the rock of His presence.
Now that is a promise we can trust in during these last days!

 

The Battle of Armageddon

“When the thousand years are over, Satan will be released from his prison, and will go out to deceive the nations in the four corners of the earth — Gog and Magog — to gather them for battle.”  (Revelation 20:78)
Gog and Magog are also mentioned in the Brit Chadashah (New Testament) in connection with Armageddon and the final battle between the forces of good and evil.
This war with Gog and Magog is not the same war described in Ezekiel 38 but a final end-time battle after the thousand-year reign of Jeshua HaMashiach (Jesus the Messiah).
The Son of David, Jeshua, will come again — this time as our conquering Messiah to defeat the invading forces forever.  All who have believed in their Saviour, Jeshua, will inherit eternity in God’s Kingdom of which the New Jerusalem shall be the capital of a revived Garden of Eden complete with trees of life and pure living water that will be good to eat and drink forever.

Ancient ruins atop Har Meggido in Israel

Armageddon is mentioned only once in the Brit Chadashah (New Testament) in chapter 16 of the Book of Revelation.
“They are spirits of demons performing miraculous signs, and they go out to the kings of the whole world, to gather them for the battle on the great day of God Almighty….  Then they gathered the kings together to the place that in Hebrew is called Armageddon.”  (Revelation 16:14, 16)
The word Armageddon is derived from Har Magedon (meaning mountain of Megiddo) and is mentioned many times in the Tanakh (Old Testament).
Megiddo is derived from the Hebrew word gadad, meaning to penetrate, muster troops together, perhaps even invade.
In this end-time invasion, we once again see Israel’s enemies mounting a war against Jerusalem.  This time, however, we see the spiritual forces behind the rebellion against God:
“They had as king over them the angel of the Abyss, whose name in Hebrew is Abaddon, and in Greek, Apollyon.”  (Revelation 9:11)
The words Abaddon and Apollyon mean Destroyer.
And this time, God pours out on the Destroyer and all rebels the full extent of His judgment, including everlasting torment for Satan, the beast and the false prophet.
“They marched across the breadth of the earth and surrounded the camp of God’s people, the city He loves.  But fire came down from heaven and devoured them.  And Satan, who deceived them, was thrown into the lake of burning sulfur, where the beast and the false prophet had been thrown.  They will be tormented day and night forever and ever.” (Revelation 20:910)
With an Outstretched Arm
As we read how God will hurl His fury against Gog with pestilence and with blood, floods, giant hailstones, fire and brimstone, it’s easy to see from this Haftarah portion that God is furious with those who come against the Land of Israel(Ezekiel 38:22).
In fact, there are several parallels between God’s deliverance of Israel from Egypt long ago and His future deliverance of Israel from Gog in the end times.  In both, we see that God saves and rescues Israel with a strong hand and with an outstretched arm.
The phrase with a strong hand and an outstretched arm (בְּיָ֣ד חֲ֭זָקָה וּבִזְר֣וֹעַ נְטוּיָ֑ה) has special meaning in Jewish tradition.  It represents God using His power on behalf of His people.  The “arm of the Lord” also represents His salvation, which in Hebrew is Jeshua.
“You brought your people Israel out of Egypt with signs and wonders, by a mighty hand and an outstretched arm and with great terror.”  (Jeremiah 32:21, see also Deuteronomy 4:34; 26:8; Exodus 6:6)
As Russia expands its influence in the region and neighboring nations plot to annihilate Israel, there is certainly evidence that Ezekiel 38 is on the horizon.  Yet, this Sukkot Parasha reveals that God’s Divine Sheltering Presence over Israel has not ended but will continue past the end of this age.
God is not finished with the Jewish People and Israel.  This is plainly evident when we consider how Bible Prophecy concerning Israel is being fulfilled during these end times before our very eyes.
The Brit Chadashah (New Covenant) also tells us that God’s plan to reach out to the nations through Israel did not end with the death and resurrection of Messiah, but continues to this day and will in the world to come:
“For if their casting Yeshua [Jesus] aside means reconciliation for the world, what will their accepting Him mean?  It will be life from the dead!”  (Romans 11:15)
The Book of Romans promises that when the Jewish People come to know Jeshua, it will be like life from the dead for the world.
Before this can happen, however, they must first hear the Good News of Jeshua!
“How can they call on Him unless they believe in Him?  How can they believe in Him unless they hear about Him?  How can they hear about Him unless someone preaches to them?”  (Romans 10:14)
It is up to the followers of Jeshua to follow up the task given by this master, rabbi Jeshua. Therefore Christians, being aware that the times are coming closer, should make work of it, spreading the Good News of the coming Kingdom of God.
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With thanks to the Messianic Bible
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Additional reading

  1. Ninth of Av
  2. Festival of Freedom and persecutions
  3. Jerusalem God’s City for ever
  4. Glory of only One God Who gives His Word
  5. Vayikra after its opening word וַיִּקְרָא, which means and He called
  6. Holy land Christian exodus
  7. How do we know the coming of Jesus is very near?
  8. Armageddon, har and megiddo, an action or a place
  9. Ember and light the ransomed of Jehovah
  10. Ransom for all
  11. Jerusalem and a son’s kingdom
  12. Bringing into safety from Irak and Iran
  13. 2015 the year of ISIS
  14. This Week’s Developments in Weekly World Watch 15-21 July
  15. The promise a guarantee of something and the heir that is going to have
  16. Chemical warsite and Pushing king of the South

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Further reading

  1. Understanding the Battle of Gog and Magog
  2. Trend Update: Burden of Damascus/Russian Embassy Takes Fire, October 2016
  3. Zork Nemesis – The Forbidden Lands
  4. War is upon us!
  5. Russia, Iran, and The War with Israel
  6. The Coming War
  7. Ezekiel blog: My version of the end of the world, part I
  8. Ezekiel blog: My version of the end of the world Part II
  9. Who are the real Gog and Magog in prophecy?
  10. Less of Me
  11. “My Relationship with Jesus Christ”
  12. Trend Update: Ezekiel 38-39/Magog (Russia)/Golan Heights, Passover 2016
  13. Alliance Formation

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Filed under Religious affairs, World affairs