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THE MIDDLE EAST CAULDRON

The Middle East is a simmering pot, and one day it will reach  boiling point and spill over like a volcano, to engulf the region, and the world, in a fiery ordeal.

Iraq has already boiled over. Baghdad is burning.  Lebanon is on the brink of more tragic days.  Gaza is a powder keg waiting to explode. Somalia, Ethiopia, Eritrea and Sudan are seething, and the battles continue to rage in Afghanistan. Iran and Syria are heating and stirring the cauldron, and of course, Satan “the god of this world” (2 Cor 4:4), is unceasingly supplying the fuel to bring the pot to the boil.

There are many other pots also simmering around the world. The Scripture refers to one of them as “the kingdoms of the north.” 

 

Look at this prophecy ...

“The Word of YHWH came to me saying, ‘What do you see, Jeremiah?’ And I said, ‘I see a branch of an almond tree.’ Then YHWH said to me, ‘You have seen well, for I am watching over My Word to perform it.

“The Word of YHWH came to me a second time saying, ‘What do you see?’ And I said, ‘I see a boiling pot, tilting away from the north.’ Then YHWH said to me, ‘Out of the north the evil will be poured out on all the inhabitants of the land.

“‘Now watch for I am calling all the clans of the kingdoms of the north,’ declares the Sovereign Master YHWH; ‘and they will come, and each one will set up his throne at the entrance of the gates of Jerusalem, and against all its surrounding walls, and against all the cities of Judah. I will pronounce My judgments on them concerning all their wickedness, because they have forsaken Me, and burned incense to other gods, and worshipped the works of their own hands’.”  (Jeremiah 1:11-16)

 

The primary fulfillment of this prophecy was the invasion of Israel by Babylon in BC 586. But Biblical prophecies often have more than one fulfillment.  And there is certainly an endtime alliance of the kings of the north that is going to become a boiling pot in these last days.  As Ezekiel also said:

“The Sovereign Master, YHWH, says: ‘Listen! I am against you, O Gog, chief prince of Rosh (Russia), Meshech (Moscow), and Tubal (Tobolsk- Asiatic Russia). I will turn you around, put hooks into your jaws and bring you out with your whole army - your horses and horsemen all fully armed, and a great horde with large and small shields, all of them brandishing swords.

‘Persia (Iran), Cush (Ethiopia), and Put (Libya) will be with them, all with shields and helmets; Gomer (Germany) also with all its troops; and the House of Togarmah from the far north (Turkey and the Turkic people of Central Asia) with all its troops - many nations with you. Get ready; be prepared, you and all the hordes gathered about you, and take command of them.

‘After many days you will be summoned; in the latter years you will invade the land that has recovered from the sword, whose people have been gathered from many nations to the mountains of Israel which had long been desolate. Its people had been brought out from the nations, and now all of them are living securely. You and all your troops and the many nations with you will go up, advancing like a storm; you will be like a cloud covering the land ...

“Then you will come from your place out of the remote parts of the north, you and many peoples with you, all of them riding on horses, a great company and a mighty army; and you will come up against My people Israel like a cloud, to cover the land - it will be in the last days. I will bring you against My land, in order that the nations may know Me, when I am sanctified in you before their eyes, O Gog.’                                                      (Ezekiel 38:3-9, 15-16)

The nations named in this prophecy are all part of a great Russian-led confederation that will invade Israel during World War in the first year of the Tribulation.  And today we can see this boiling pot simmering and tilting towards the Promised Land.

In the last week of November, King Abdullah of Jordan warned that 2007 could witness three simultaneous wars in the region in the coming year – in Iraq, Lebanon and in Israel and the Palestinian territories. Ominous signs are all around: the Democrat’s victory in US; Syria establishing relations with Iraq; the Iraqi president’s visit to Iran; and Ahmadinejad and Khamenei both promising help to Iraq; Somalia falling to Islamic fundamentalism, and threatening Ethiopia.

Let’s look at some of the latest developments in the simmering Middle East cauldron. And remember … 

“When these things begin to take place, straighten and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.” (Luke 21:28)


Middle East

CRISIS IN LEBANON

HIZB’ALLAH DEMANDS MORE POWER

TRAGIC ASSASSINATION OF PIERRE GEMAYEL

Lebanon is in turmoil after the assassination of Pierre Gemayel, Lebanon’s industry minister, who was a leading anti-Syrian figure. Pierre died in a Christian area of Beirut after several gunmen ambushed and rammed his car with their vehicle, and sprayed it with gunfire from close range.

Pierre Gemayel, 34, was his country’s youngest MP, a rising star in the Maronite (Catholic) Christian Phalange party, and a member of the Gemayel political dynasty.  He was a strong critic of the Shi’ite Hizb’allah and of the Syrian influence in Lebanon. In the past, Phalangist leaders have called for the expulsion of Palestinian Liberation Organization supporters and have intimated support for peaceful relations with Israel.

Pierre Gemayel was the sixth anti-Syrian figure killed in Lebanon in the past two years, including former PM Rafik Hariri in Feb 2005. 

Gemayel’s father, former President Amin Gemayel, speaking from behind a panel of bulletproof glass, on the day of the funeral, told a crowd in downtown Beirut: “The second independence uprising was launched today for change and it will not stop. I pledge to you that we will soon take steps so that your efforts will not go in vain.”

Amin Gemayel is a leader of the Maronist Christian community. (Maronites are Christians affiliated to the Roman Catholic Church. Between 800,000 and 900,000 live in Lebanon, roughly 25% of the population. Lebanon’s constitution requires that the president is Maronite, and the prime minister a Sunni. The current Lebanese “Christian” president, Emile Lahoud, is staunchly pro-Syrian.)

In recent weeks, Hizb’allah, boasting of their assumed victory in the recent war against Israel, demanded to be given one third of the seats in the Lebanese cabinet.  This would give them veto power over the decisions of the government. They also threatened to create mass demonstrations in the streets if they were not given an increased role in government affairs.

Hizb’allah chief Hassan Nasrallah attacked the Lebanese government on Nov 18th saying it lacked credibility. “The Lebanese government is in a state of weakness and is still feeling a huge defeat as the result of the last Israeli war in Lebanon,” he said in a taped address aired on Hizb’allah’s Al-Manar satellite station on Nov 19th.

Nasrallah told thousands of Lebanese supporters to prepare to take to the streets of Beirut in order to force the resignation of the government. He said the current Lebanese government is a puppet of the Bush administration.

US DEMOCRATS WIN PAVES WAY FOR MIDEAST CHAOS

Lebanon’s Druze leader Walid Jumblatt fears the emboldened Hizb’allah will provoke violence, and says that following the political changes in the US, Syrians feel they have the upper hand in the region.

Jumblatt is head of Lebanon’s Progressive Socialist Party and is widely considered the most prominent anti-Syrian Lebanese politician.

Speaking on 19th Nov, he said the US Democrats’ calls for a withdrawal from Iraq and for changes in US Middle East policy has, in part, emboldened Syrian-backed Hizb’allah militia to quit the Lebanese parliament and to threaten street protests against the government.

“The Syrians play this game where they have been waiting for the Americans to get weaker in Iraq,” he said. “Now with the Democrats’ win paving the way for an American withdrawal, and with Rumsfeld’s resignation making a statement, the Syrians believe they have the upper hand in the region to retake Lebanon. The Syrians are trying to profit from the circumstances by creating havoc and by using Hizb’allah to stage a coup d’etat to get rid of us (the anti-Syrian parliamentary majority).”

A SYRIAN-BACKED COUP FEARED

Walid Jumblatt went on to warn that Lebanon is on the verge of a coup d’etat staged by Hizb’allah and other pro-Syrian elements.

“The opposition groups are on the verge of announcing a coup in the country and we should take the brave decision to confront all options,” Jumblatt said in a briefing to his ruling parliamentary faction.

 

TRIBUNAL TO TRY HARIRI KILLERS

A recent UN report implicated Damascus in the assassination of Rafik Hariri, and just a week before Gemayel’s assassination, the Lebanese cabinet endorsed plans to set up a tribunal to try those suspected of killing Hariri.

Six pro-Syrian ministers (5 Shi’ites and 1 Christian) opposed those plans, and resigned from the cabinet in an attempt to bring down the government. (Lebanese law requires the dissolution of the government if one-third of the 24-member cabinet resigns or becomes unavailable.)

With 6 pro-Syrian cabinet members resigned, and now another member, Gemayel, eliminated the government is very shaky. The death or resignation of one more would cause Siniora to lose the quorum required by the constitution to legally govern, while the fall of two ministers would cause the government to collapse.

Hizb’allah is now positioning itself in readiness to attempt a take over after the anticipated collapse.

Pro-Syria President Emile Lahoud has written to UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan saying: “The cabinet’s approval of the plans (for a tribunal) ... is not binding on the Lebanese state. These documents were not approved by the President of the Republic because the decision to endorse them was taken by an authority that defied the constitution.”

Lahoud declared, “the government has lost its legitimacy following the (six) ministers’ resignations, and any decision it makes will be considered unconstitutional.”  He warned of “dangerous divisions that would threaten internal civilian peace” if a “unity government” was not formed soon.  Lahoud’s idea of a solution is to give Hizb’allah the extra cabinet seats they demand, in line with their “new status.” That would give Hizb’allah veto power over all major government decisions; and it would be a victory to Syria.

 

On the same day as Pierre Gemayel’s killing, the UN Security Council approved the plans for the tribunal on Tuesday, 21st Nov.  Both events intensified the acute political crisis in Lebanon. 

Gemayel’s funeral took place on 23rd Nov, the day on which Hizb’allah had planned a massive protest aimed at toppling the government of prime minister, Fouad Siniora, a Sunni Muslim.

Hizb’allah postponed its rally, as crowds of Lebanese took to the streets in a show of support for the government.  An estimated crowd of up to 800,000 people participated in the funeral and/or rally which turned into a massive demonstration of anger against Syria and its allies. Many burned pictures of Syria’s president and Lebanon’s pro-Syrian leaders.

The rally, which was a major show of Sunni-Christian unity, reinvigorated the supporters of independence in their power struggle with Syrian-backed Hizb’allah, and its allies, which is threatening to split the nation.

Several politicians, speaking at the rally, vowed the next step will be the removal of President Lahoud.

Many Lebanese blame Syria for the killings of Hariri, Gemayel and other anti-Syrian figures. Damascus, like Hizb’allah and Iran, of course, deny any involvement.

Syria dominated Lebanon for 29 years until it was forced to pull its troops out last year by the powerful popular movement, along with international pressure, in the wake of the assassination of Rafik Hariri.

Anti-Syrian politicians were subsequently voted into power and Fouad Siniora become prime minister. But the pro-Syria president, Emile Lahoud, continued in power.

The great fault of the government, however, was their failure or inability to disarm Hizb’allah as was called for in the UN resolutions.

 

Hizb’allah has re-armed to pre-war levels, according to TIME magazine, fulfilling intelligence forecasts and negating the Israeli government claims of a victory that severely weakened the terrorist group.

The magazine confirmed numerous media reports since the UN Security Council ceasefire resolution last August that Iran and Syria have been re-arming Hizb’allah. A recent British newspaper report quoted the UN Interim Force (UNIFIL) troops as saying that the terrorist group can operate freely at night, when the UNIFIL troops do not operate because of the danger.  Hizb’allah now has 20,000 missiles, twice the number acknowledged by the Israel Defence Force.

Weapons smugglers have easily circumvented UNIFIL forces by using mountain passes, according to TIME, which also said the Iranian Revolutionary Guard is using Damascus as well as Beirut as command centers.

The likelihood that Hizb’allah would re-arm was apparent since the day that Israel agreed to the ceasefire because UNIFIL leaders categorically said they would not enforce the clause in the UN Security Council Resolution 1701, calling for the disarming of non-Lebanese army forces.

The whereabouts and fate of the two Israeli hostages still are unknown, despite Israeli and American vows that there would be no ceasefire agreement without their return.

Israel not only accepted the UN-brokered agreement but also claimed it was part of a victory in the war. “Hizb’allah has been pushed back from the fence, from the border,” PM Olmert asserted in an August speech to local authority leaders in Haifa. “Most of the long-range missiles ... were destroyed. ... A strong international force ... is organizing to ... assist in stopping the Hizb’allah.” Olmert concluded, “It is clear to the world that Hizb’allah has been beaten.”

However, 8 days earlier, the Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center at the Center for Special Studies, issued a report headlined Countdown to Conflict. It said, “Any end to the war that does not involve Hizb’allah’s disarmament will enable the Jihadist movement to rise again like a phoenix.” - Arutz /27 Nov

 

The charged atmosphere that took over Lebanon following last summer’s war with Israel continues to be the source of internal conflict between political parties in the country.

An earlier unknown organization named “Lebanon’s Mujahidin” called on Sunnis in the country to prepare to confront the Shi’ites represented by Hizb’allah, who want to take over all of Lebanon and cause revolution and civil war.

“The Mujahadeen” (holy fighters) are Sunni extremists affiliated with al-Qaida in Lebanon, and they have accused Hizb’allah of killing Pierre Gemayel.

In an internet message, according to the SITE Institute, a website which monitors Islamist web activity, they maintained that the assassination was directly executed by five individuals from Hizb’allah, and that it is a part of a continued effort by Hizb’allah and its Syrian backers to coerce Shi’ite ministers into withdrawal, ultimately facilitating an overthrow of the Lebanese government. The announcement was launched on an al-Qaida-owned website in Iraq, and was published  by  the Associated French Press.

“Hizb’allah is a party. In addition to having Iranian tendencies, basis, and support, it doesn’t hide its loyalty to the Syrian regime,” the announcement explained.

“We call on our people in Lebanon to face this bitter truth with courage and to tackle this hatred by preparing for a confrontation. We won’t let them (Shi’ites) implement their evil wishes after they succeeded in allowing an international force enter as a buffer between us and Palestine,” the announcement continued.

The announcement even contained criticism of Hizb’allah’s leaders’ political conduct and emphasized that “today they want to control all of Lebanon through an alliance with the crusaders and to eliminate the Sunni group completely. They should know we are prepared to fight them. It would be a war and we would be stronger than them.”

 

The Syrians believe the US is weakened, but Syria is now in a position of strength, and that Damascus will be able to set the new rules of the game in the region.

  * In Iraq, after Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Moallem’s visit to Baghdad on Nov 20, full diplomatic relations between Damascus and Iraq were renewed.

 

 

* President Bashar Assad is now considering how to respond to an American overture following reports that the Iraq Study Group will recommend that the US engage Syria and Iran in talks on Iraq in order to enable the US to formulate an exit strategy.

Both Iran and Syria are able to exacerbate (increase) the insurgency in Iraq. For the most part terrorists enter the country from Syria and Iran.

“Syria will not do anything unless it has secured guarantees from Washington and London that every action Damascus takes to help them will be reciprocated. It will be a step by step scenario: these actions for those actions,” a Syrian official said. Bashar al-Assad’s “top demand” is that Israel be pressured to withdraw from the Golan. Syria also demands a staged withdrawal of US troops from the region.

 

Shaul Bakhash, an expert on the Middle East at George Mason University, Washington, said: “Neither Iran nor Syria will do a favour for the US without wanting something back - and what both countries want are things that the US is not willing to give them.”                                                                                                                                

* In Lebanon, Syria is backing Hizb’allah and encouraging them to stage a revolution, for two reasons: to thwart the UN tribunal which will investigate Syrian officials regarding the Hariri assassination last year; and to regain its influence in Lebanon affairs. -  Source / The Sunday imes / Nov 19, 06

 

At the time of going to press, we see Hizb’allah supporters continuing to beseige the Lebanon government in Beirut in an attempt to bring the Siniora government down. Jordan and Saudi Arabia are expressing alarm because of these developments. Egypt’s leader Hosni Mubarak has warned that Lebanon will become a sectarian battlefield if the Hizb’allah protests turn violent.

As reported in our Millennium Alert #29 (see The Katyusha War, The Salafists, p8-10), the Sunni Salafists are more than “at odds” with the Shia Muslims of Iran. They are engaged in a war of their own – a war to claim hegemony (dominance) of the whole Islamic world. Here’s more evidence of the Sunni-Shia conflict.

Sunni jihadis warn against the ‘Persian Empire’; call Nasrallah an ‘agent of anti-Christ,’ and declare an ‘Islamic state’ in Iraq. Hizb’allah chief Hassan Nasrallah has been branded a “worshipper of idols, an agent of the anti-Christ,” and a “charlatan,” in a statement by Iraqi al-Qaida leader Sheikh Abu Hamza al-Muhajir in a statement made in November. 

 

Al-Muhajir’s statement also contained threats to blow up the White House, and forms another escalation in al-Qaida’s increasingly hostile anti-Iranian rhetoric, that has also targeted Hizb’allah.

 

Discussing the actions of US President Bush in a statement, released by al-Qaida’s al-Furqan Foundation, translated into English by the Al-Boraq Workshop, and reproduced on the Jihad Unspun website, Muhajir said: “He (Bush) turned to the Sham (Syria and Lebanon ) and terrorized its tyrant (Basher Assad), who is a Rafidi (Shi’ite) and a Nusayri (one of Shi’ite’s factions). The blockade continued until he (Assad) had to open his country to hundreds and thousands of Persians to acquire citizenship in it, so that they can support the charlatan  agent  of  the  anti-Christ,  Nasr  Allat  (a common nickname for Hizb’allah’s Nasrallah, which means “a supporter and worshipper of idols”) who is called Nasrallah.

“Hence, the Old Persian Empire has become complete, extending from the countries behind the river, Iran and Iraq … to the Sham (Syria and Lebanon).”

The al-Qaida leader said the United States had become an agent for Iran. “I wonder whether the wise of the Romans (Americans) realize that they have become slaves and mercenaries for Persia, and that they are fighting Persia’s battles for free,” he said.

On Nov 17, Sunni al-Qaida followers in Lebanon released a statement on the internet calling on Lebanese Sunnis to prepare for an imminent confrontation.

According to the SITE Institute, a website which monitors Islamist web activity, the statement also said: “Let the Rafidi (Shi’ites) know that we are ready to fight them with Allah’s help, and let it be a war. We are more eager for it than they.”

 

Rafida is an Arabic collective noun which means “turncoats, dissenters, deserters”, from the Arabic verb root which can mean “to reject.”  It is an Islamic term, which refers in a derogatory way to those who (in the opinion of the person using the term) reject legitimate Islamic authority and leadership.

In past times, it was used by some Shi’a Muslims to refer to other Shi’a who refused to follow Zayd ibn Ali. It is thought that the usage of the term came from Zayd ibn Ali himself who exclaimed “You have abandoned me (rafadtumuni)” to his own followers who retracted their oath of allegiance on hearing Zayd ibn Ali declare his love for Abu Bakr and Umar. It was also used by Sunni Muslims as a term of abuse for Shi’a Muslims. They were considered “Refusers” because they refused to give allegiance to Abu Bakr, or refused to recognize the authority of Sunni caliphs.

The word rafida (and also the Arabic non-collective singular form rafidi ) is currently used as a derogatory term for Shi’a Muslims by Sunni Muslims who refuse to accept Shi’a Islam as being a valid form of Islam. It would seem to be used primarily by Salafists.

Alawites /Alawis. Bashar Assad is an Alawi, a religious group that takes its name from Ali ibn Abi Talib, a cousin and son-in-law of the prophet Mohammad. After the death of Mohammed, Islam split between two successors -  Abu Bakr who was accepted by those who became known as Sunnis; and Ali ibn Abi Talib who was received by the other side – the Shi’a or Shi’ite.  (Shi’a is short for Shi’at Ali - “the party of ‘Ali”).

The origin of the Alawites is disputed. Some sources say they were originally Nusayriya, a sect that broke ties with Twelver Shi’ites in the 9th century. The Alawites trace their origins to the eleventh Shi’a Imam, Hasan al Askari (d. 873), and his pupil Ibn Nusayr (d. 868). Alawites claim to be Shi’a Muslims, but mainstream Shi’as denounce them as heretics.

     

In the past, most leading Sunni scholars openly considered the Shi’a as “Kafir” (disbelievers).  Many Islamic scholars of recent history have become more tolerant towards Shi’a and some have promoted unity; others have not.  Today, both Shi’a and Sunni students study and graduate together at Islamic universities. However, some Sunni groups such as Salafists, Taliban or al-Qaida have continued to persecute  Shi’a  as heretics. Salafists still consider Shi’as as apostates and openly advocate their killing.  - Ynet News / 26 Nov  06

 

This is the new title of al-Qaida in Iraq. The al-Qaida chief in Iraq, Abu Hamza al-Muhajir, declared the formation of a Caliphate  - a “state of Islam” - in Iraq, in anticipation of the withdrawal of US troops from the region.

“In a long waited step, for which sacrifices were granted and martyrs’ bloods were shed to achieve its path; the Mujahideen Shura Council in Iraq has announced the establishment of the ‘Islamic State of Iraq,’ the state of Islam that will rule the law of Allah on people and lands, that will protect the core (center) of Islam and acts as a solid shield for the Sunni people on the land of Iraq,” Muhajir declared in a statement, published on the newly created Caliphate Voice Channel website. “O monotheist Muslims … O Mujahideen across the world; today we announce the end of a stage of Jihad and the start of a new one, in which we lay the first cornerstone of the Islamic Caliphate project and revive the glory of religion.”

The al-Qaida site also accused Shi’ites of working with the United States to kill former Iraqi al-Qaida leader Abu Mussab al-Zarqawi.

MOST PEOPLE today who watch what is happening, are wondering what will ultimately happen to Iraq.

Iraq is in a state of virtual civil war. We see four groups working in Iraq for various purposes:

* The Al-Qaida-backed Sunnis

* The Iran-backed Shi’ites

* The independent-minded Kurds, and

* The moderate coalitionists who still believe in a federal democratic Iraq.

The first two groups are radical, anti-Israel and opposed to each other - the Sunni-Shia divide. And as moderates are seldom the winners these days, Iraq is likely to split into three. But ultimately modern Iraq does not have a prosperous future.

I expect the 60% Shias of Iraq will eventually line up with Iran and ultimately with the confederation of Rosh; the prophecy of which we read near the beginning of this article.

There is a major Biblical prophecy concerning Babylon and Chaldea (modern Iraq) and its ultimate horrific destruction in Jeremiah 50 & 51 - two long chapters. On the next two pages I have quoted part of this prophecy. Some of it sounds like current events in Iraq, but the prophecy is to be fully fulfilled in the Great Tribulation.

9-10 ‘For look! I am going to arouse and bring up against Babylon an alliance of great nations from the land of the north, and they will draw up their battle lines against her; from there she will be taken captive. Their arrows will be like those of a skilled warrior - not returning empty-handed. ‘Chaldea will become plunder; all who plunder her will be gratified,’ declares YHWH. (Yahweh, the Name of the Almighty)

13    ‘Because of the wrath of YHWH she will not be inhabited, but she will be completely desolate. Everyone who passes by Babylon will be horrified and will hiss and scoff because of all her plagues and Prophecy.

18    ‘Therefore thus says YHWH of Hosts, the God of Israel: “Watch! I am going to punish the king of Babylon and his land, just as I punished the king of Assyria.”

22-23 ‘The noise of battle is in the land, and of great destruction. How the hammer of the whole earth has been broken and shattered! How Babylon has become a horrendous ruin among the nations!

30    ‘Therefore her young men will fall in her streets, and all her men of war will be silenced in that day.’

32    The arrogant one will stumble and fall with no one to raise him up; and I shall set fire to his cities and it will devour everything around him.”

39-40 ‘Therefore the desert creatures will live there along with the jackals. The ostriches also will live in it, and it will never again be inhabited or dwelt in from generation to generation. As when God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah with its neighbours,’ declares YHWH, ‘No man will live there, nor will any son of man reside in it.

 

2      ‘And I shall dispatch foreigners to Babylon that they may winnow her and may devastate her land; ‘For on every side they will be opposed to her in the day of her calamity.

7  Babylon has been a golden cup in the hand of YHWH, intoxicating all the earth. The nations have drunk of her wine; therefore the nations are going mad.   

8  Suddenly Babylon has fallen and been broken. Wail over her! Bring balm for her pain; perhaps she may be healed.

9  We applied healing to Babylon, but she was not healed. ‘Forsake her and let us each go to his own country, for her judgment has reached to heaven and towers up to the very skies.

11    ‘Sharpen the arrows, fill the quivers! YHWH has aroused the spirit of the kings of the Medes, because His purpose is against Babylon to destroy it; for it is the vengeance of YHWH, vengeance for His temple.’

29-30  So the land quakes and writhes, for the purposes of YHWH against Babylon stand, to make the land of Babylon a desolation without inhabitants. The mighty men of Babylon have ceased fighting; they stay in the strongholds; their strength is exhausted; they are becoming as women. Their dwelling places are set on fire.  The bars of her gates are broken.

42-43 The sea has come up over Babylon; she has been engulfed with its many tumultuous waves. ‘Her cities have become ruined and desolate, a parched and desert land; a land where no-man lives and through which no son of man passes.

 

  Middle EastIsrael

ISRAEL PREPARING FOR FULL-SCALE WAR

  Israel is preparing for full scale war in which Syria is expected to be one of the main players facing the Jewish state. Both Syria and Iran now top Israel’s defence priority list, superceding the Palestinian threat, according to a number of Israeli officials quoted in The Sunday Times.

A defence analyst sourced in the report opined that Israel had missed a golden opportunity to reduce the Syrian threat during the war against Lebanon’s Hizb’allah last July. The Syrian air force could have been destroyed in a couple of days, effectively leaving that country without the air cover it would need should it decide to launch its SCUD missiles on Israel.

This assessment just adds to the numerous others that together have concluded Israel lost the July war, and will pay for that failure when the next conflict erupts.                                                               - Source: The Jerusalem Post / Nov 12, 06

Many reports and commentators are now anticipating a major war, and in fact, anyone who is keenly watching the Middle East Cauldron should be able to see it coming. Here’s some of the recent news items:

 

ISRAEL WILL SOON GO TO WAR AGAIN

Another war between Israel and Hizb’allah is inevitable and unavoidable as Hizb’allah is rebuilding and replenishing its stocks of missiles in south Lebanon.

After the Katyusha War in July-Aug, Hizb’allah, in spite of suffering heavy losses in the fighting, and as many as 1,000 killed out of its militant strength of up to 5,000, portrayed itself as “the winner.” 

The war was certainly a setback for Israel, but it was not the defeat that much of the news media reported it to be.  The Israel Defence Force (IDF) did not suddenly lose its historic superiority over its Arab enemies.

Hizb’allah launched a fierce attack on the towns of northern Israel, but its own survival was due to the extensive bunker-and-tunnel system that it had constructed since June 2000. The tunnel system could not be destroyed by the Israeli Air Force.  A full scale land assault was needed. Israel’s political leaders were reluctant to commit to such an assault until it was too late. Israel’s strategy was to rain down a lot of destruction on Hizb’allah’s headquarters in Beirut , and other targets, but it was flawed in that one main objective - silencing the Katyusha rockets - could not be fulfilled before the UN ceasefire forced the IDF to withdraw.

Now that Hizb’allah has re-established a “zone of invulnerability,” Israel will be compelled to reopen its offensive against this sworn enemy on its northern border.

An Israeli return to south Lebanon would most likely provoke a war with Lebanon’s Arab protector, Syria.  But such an extension of hostilities might prove welcome both to Israel and to the US, both of which regard Syria as Iran’s advanced post on the Mediterranean shore. - Source: Daily Telegraph (UK) / Nov 6, 06


 

THE COMING MIDDLE EAST WAR

Israel’s foes are gearing up for war; the warning signs are everywhere.

In Lebanon, Hizb’allah is busy rebuilding its expansive terrorist infrastructure after last summer’s fighting with Israel. Under the protective shield of UN troops, the group has been welcoming large shipments of weapons from Iran and Syria, and fortifying its bunkers in advance of the next round of conflict.

Hizb’allah leader, Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah, has asserted that his organization still has “more than 20,000 rockets” and that it had “recovered all its organizational and military capabilities.” Even allowing for boasting and exaggeration, there are clear signs that Nasrallah is steadily engaged in rebuilding his forces.

Brig.-Gen. Yossi Baidatz, head of the IDF intelligence directorate’s research dept. says there is conclusive and decisive evidence that Syria is rearming Hizb’allah.  “The weapons smuggling from Syria into Lebanon is continuing with official Syrian involvement.”

Syrian President Bashar Assad has recently made a series of public statements, speaking openly about the possibility of military conflict with Israel and his desire to retake the Golan Heights by force.  In an interview with the Kuwaiti newspaper Al-Anba on October 6, Assad said that Damascus was ready for war with the Jewish state.

In Tehran, the Iranian president continues to rave on about wiping Israel off the map, and continues to pursue his nuclear ambitions. Speaking at a mosque in Tehran, Ahmadinejad insisted that he had received a Divine message indicating that his country would prevail. “One day,” he said, “I will be asked whether I have been in touch with someone who told me we would win, and I will respond: ‘Yes, I have been in touch with God’.”

Iran has been working to strengthen the extremists throughout the region, who share their desire to hit America and Israel.

GAZA PREPARES FOR WAR

 

30 TONS OF EXPLOSIVES SMUGGLED INTO GAZA

 

Israeli Shin Bet security service chief Yuval Diskin says that the government must prepare for a “military option” in Gaza. Palestinians have smuggled 30 tons of military-grade explosives, large quantities of arms, anti-aircraft and anti-tank missiles, as well as cash, into the Gaza Strip since the IDF pulled out last year.

The Palestinians are arming themselves to the teeth, building a military force, defensive systems and preparing Hizb’allah-style surprises. According to media reports, Hamas has assembled an armed military force consisting of 7,500 fighters, which is said to include specialized units such as snipers, missile batteries and anti-tank troops.

Speaking before the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, Diskin said that Israel has no good options in the Gaza Strip. “All the options are awful, and we must choose the least awful of all of them.

The security chief emphasized that the dangers to Israel posed by the radical Popular Resistance Committees may be greater than those of Hamas, because the PRC membership contains more extreme religious fundamentalists. He also told the committee that Hamas had lost popularity due to its difficulties in ruling the Palestinian Authority.  – Ha’aretz / 14 Nov 06

 

“SAMSON, THE PHILISTINES ARE UPON YOU!”

Gaza and Israel today reminds me of the story of the exploits and fall of Samson, a mighty but flawed ruler of ancient Israel. His life and dramatic death is recorded in the Book of Judges, chapters 13-16. Samson’s exploits would make anyone cringe; on once occasion he killed 1,000 enemies with the jawbone of a donkey (Judges 15:15). For those who are not familiar with the life of Samson, here is the tragic ending of his story:

“Now Samson went to Gaza … after some time he loved a woman in the Valley of Sorek, whose name was Delilah.  And the lords and rulers of the Philistines came up to her and said, ‘Entice him, and find out where his great strength lies and how we may overpower him so that we may bind and afflict him; and then each one of us will give you 1,100 pieces of silver ...

“She called out, ‘Samson! The Philistines are upon you.’ And he awoke from his sleep and said, ‘I will go out as at other times and shake myself free.’ But he did not know that YHWH had departed from him.  Then the Philistines seized him and gouged out his eyes; and they brought him down to Gaza. They bound him with bronze chains, and he was a grinder in the prison ….

“Then Samson called to YHWH and said, ‘O Sovereign Master, YHWH, please strengthen me just this time, O God, that I may with one blow take vengeance on the Philistines for my two eyes.’ Samson grasped the two middle pillars which supported the house (a religious pavilion), and braced himself against them, the one with his right hand and the other with his left.

“And Samson said, ‘Let me die with the Philistines!’ And he bent with all his might so that the house fell on the lords and all the people who were in it. So the dead whom he killed at his death were more than those whom he killed in his life.”  (Judges 16:1, 4-5, 20-21, 28-30)

 

Modern Israel has had a distinct reputation of being a Samson – the greatest military power in the Middle East. Its exploits are renowned, but under the present leaders Israel, it seems, has lost its strength, and does not perceive that YHWH has departed. The radical, hate-filled enemies of Zion are now conspiring to bind the strong man, and to pluck out his eyes and kill him.

Gaza has become a terrorist state just as experts warned it would, before Israel pulled out last year. It is now in the grip of Hamas - an enemy that continues to call for the destruction of Israel.

Israel has what is called “The Samson Option.” And it has nuclear weapons! If it is pushed to the brink of destruction, Israel could bring the whole house - the Middle East - down. But Israel does not intend to suicide! When it is pushed too far it will become a fiery brand in a field of dry sheaves.

“In that day I will make the leaders of Judah like a burning pot in a woodpile, and like a flaming torch among sheaves. They will consume on the right hand and on the left all the surrounding peoples; and Jerusalem will be inhabited again on her own sites - in Jerusalem.” (Zechariah 12:6)

 

This prophecy will be fulfilled in the Tribulation.

 

WHAT HAS BEEN HAPPENING IN GAZA OVER THE PAST SIX MONTHS?

 

1. After Gilad Shalit, an Israeli soldier was kidnapped by Gazan terrorists last June, Israel has waged a campaign against the Hamas administration and other terrorist organisations.

2. Israel has sought to prevent foreign weapons and fighters entering the Gaza; to stop or at least reduce the firing of Kassam rockets from Gaza into Israeli towns; and also to promote a moderate Palestinian regime.

3. Hamas, like Hizb’allah in Lebanon, has been creating a fortified zone in the Gaza Strip, building an underground system, stockpiling ammunitions and missiles, and preparing to inflict a devastating blow on Israel. Hamas re-supplies itself with arms and munitions brought from Egypt through tunnels under the Egypt-Gaza border.

4. Israel has searched, found and destroyed some of the tunnels, but the Palestinians keep burrowing new ones. So it has now become imperative for Israel to move against the tunnels and also the underground system being constructed. The Gaza Strip is considered a softer target than south Lebanon, since it is an enclave that Israel can easily dominate.

5. Israel claims that foreign fighters are entering Gaza through poorly guarded sections of the Gaza-Egyptian border. These fighters, according to Israeli intelligence are Iranian and Hizb’allah-trained bomb and sabotage experts, commando and anti-tank missile instructors who will train Hamas’ new Special Security Service, Murabitun.

Israeli sources also claim that this new unit consists of specialised sub-units, including missile, anti­tank and sniper units - all of which can be equipped with the type of armaments used by Hizb’allah during the conflict with Israel last July.

6. While Israel is targeting Palestinian militia throughout Gaza, the Palestinians continue to fight among themselves. Hamas’ Murabitun  is rapidly growing into a power base in the struggle for control in the Palestinian Territories. Hamas is preparing for an inevitable clash with Fatah and President Abbas. But Mahmoud Abbas has his own plans, and is creating additional forces to counter the rising threat to his authority. Eventually, some Israeli observers expect, the newly-empowered Hamas force is likely to prevail.

On 22 October, Fatah and Hamas gunmen staged no less than 26 assassination attempts of each other’s commanders. On 27 October, 15 Palestinians were wounded in armed clashes between Hamas and Fatah in northern Gaza. External pressure is helping to bring the Palestinians to the verge of civil war.

The US and Israel have been pressing President Abbas to act forcefully against Hamas before it gains total control of the Gaza Strip. Egypt and Jordan are also very concerned about Iran’s increased influence among the Palestinians by financial aid and political support to Hamas.

7. In October, a Palestinian delegation to Tehran, led by the Minister of the Interior, Said Siyam, secured an agreement from Iran to actively support Hamas in the Gaza Strip. On this occa­sion, Iranian President Ahmadinejad and Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei ordered mili­tary pacts to be signed between Iran and Hamas.

Under this unprecedented agreement, between a Shia Islamist government and a Sunni Arab Islamist party, the Murabitun could fall under the influence of Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps, as is the case with Hizb’allah in Lebanon. This could turn the Gaza Strip into Iran’s second forward base on Israel’s doorstep.

Salafist al-Qaida will not be impressed with these compromising developments!

8. There have been persistent reports in recent months about a growing al-Qaida presence in the Palestinian territories, as the international terrorist group seeks to prepare for launching strikes against Israel.

9. Palestinian terrorists have continued to fire Kassam rockets into the Negev on a daily basis, hitting Israeli towns and communities such as Sderot and Nir Am.  A number of Israelis have been killed, and many injured, by the attacks.

10. Israel has inflicted a lot of damage on Gaza, and over 300 Palestinians have been killed in the past six months, but Israel has not yet succeeded in its main objectives; stopping the Kassam rockets, stemming the flow of armaments, collapsing the Hamas administration, and securing the release of Gilad Shalit.

 

Former Defence Minister Binyamin Ben-Eliezer is calling for the IDF to do “whatever is necessary” to halt Kassam rocket attacks from Gaza. In an interview with Army Radio, the now current Minister of National Infrastructure, Ben-Eliezer exclaimed, “We’ve had enough! The rocket attacks must stop!”

“I am tired of burying children and visiting people in the hospital,” he added, stating the government must order the IDF to do “whatever is necessary” to bring a complete halt to the attacks. He rejected the opinion of those who feel the attacks cannot be stopped, but rather just minimized at best.

Ben-Eliezer, a retired IDF Brigadier General stated he is certain that the attacks can be halted in a two-hour period if and when the military is given the green light to do that which must be done. Ben-Eliezer stated the targeted surgical strikes must be stepped-up, around-the-clock, not only to target terrorists who fire rockets, but with direct strikes against anyone who plays a role in the attacks, including those who transport terrorists.

Responding to concerns over the condemnations of the international community that IDF fire into Gaza kills innocent civilians, Ben-Eliezer said in an agitated voice, “Have you ever been in Sderot? They are civilians too! We pulled out of Gaza. Instead of busying themselves with building Gaza, they (the Palestinians) attack us.”

 

 

PALESTINIAN UNITY GOVERNMENT TALKS “AT DEAD END”

Hamas has been greatly hindered in its administrative role since it came to power early in the year, because it has been branded a terrorist organisation, and European and American financial foreign aid has been withheld. Hamas has not been able to pay the salaries of 165,000 workers including police for most of the year.  And yet, Hamas is not willing to recognise the state of Israel or the agreements that have been made by earlier Palestinian administrations.

President Mahmoud Abbas, the Fatah leader, has been trying for months to come to a coalition deal with Hamas whereby they could establish a unity government made up of “independent experts” - to replace the Hamas-led body. He was hoping a coalition deal would enable him to revive peace efforts with Israel, and that it would lead to the restoration of American and European aid to the Palestinian Authority.

It was reported that negotiators had agreed on a new prime minister - US-educated Mohammed Shabir, the former president of the Islamic University in Gaza City - but differences persisted over the distribution of Cabinet portfolios.

Hamas insisted on retaining control over the Interior and Finance Ministries and also refused to allow Fatah to control the education, health, welfare and religious affairs portfolios.

The Interior Ministry controls the PA security forces. Hamas is demanding to be a full partner in the PA National Security Council as well as share in the appointment of governors and ambassadors, which until now was controlled by Fatah.

Numerous heads of state, including those of a number of Arab countries, have worked hard to encourage the Hamas PM, Ismail Haniyeh, to agree to a coalition government which would also meet the demands of the Quartet. The demands by Russia, the US, the EU and the UN include recognition of Israel’s right to exist, renouncing violence and upholding peace agreements signed by the previous PA government led by Mahmoud Abbas.

But Hamas has refused to budge on any of the issues, and has now added more stumbling blocks, making it unlikely that a unity government will be formed in the near future.

The proposed coalition government was expected to take a vague position toward Israel in hopes that the West will lift the financial sanctions.

Nov 30. Mr Abbas, met with US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice in Jericho and later told a press conference after the meeting that the unity talks with Hamas had reached a “dead end.” Abbas said he would now weigh all possible options after the failure of the talks with Hamas.

“The negotiations with Hamas are over,” said a PA official. “There’s no point in pursuing the talks over the unity government because Hamas is not interested in partnership.”

Abbas has called an emergency meeting of the PLO executive committee to brief its members on the failure of the unity talks and his future plans, said another official, holding Hamas responsible.

 

ISRAEL’S EX-INTELLIGENCE CHIEF:

“NO POLITICAL SOLUTION IN GAZA”

In his first interview since retiring as Head of IDF Intelligence, Major-General Aharon Ze’evi-Farkash said stability is not foreseen in the PA; al-Qaida is down but working hard to rise; and Iran can and must be stopped. He sees increasing threats against Israel from an increasingly radicalized Islamic Middle East.

The General says he fears that the international community will not galvanize together to stop Iran from acquiring nuclear capabilities, despite the threat Iran poses to Europe and the West.

 

Sunnis vs Shi’ites

Ze’evi-Farkash provided a brief analysis of the forces at work in the Middle East: “The Arab world has two major circles of influence. One is the Shi’ites, including Iran, the Shi’ites in Iraq, the Alawis in Syria, and Hizb’allah in Lebanon. Opposing them are the moderate Sunnis, which include Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan and some Gulf States. The two groups are preparing to fight it out, as we can see by the declared intentions of some Sunni countries, led by Egypt, to develop nuclear capabilities, leading to an atom bomb.”

Both camps have identified the problematic areas that can provide either an opportunity or a threat, depending on their viewpoint: Iraq, Lebanon, and the Palestinian Authority.  In all three, the state is weak, the terror organizations are getting stronger, and mini civil wars have develop-ed: Shi’ite-Sunni in Iraq, the new vs. the old in Lebanon, and in the PA, it’s Hamas against Fatah, and even Gaza against the West Bank].

 

The Iranian Threat

Asked how the Iranian threat can be stopped, Ze’evi-Farkash said the world must recognize Iran’s nuclear ambitions as a threat not only against Israel, but against Europe and the U.S. “Iran wants to be a super-power,” he said, “and is encouraged by the West’s inability to stop North Korea.

“However, Iran has not yet attained nuclear power and it can still be stopped - if the world makes it clear that this is its united goal. But this message has not yet been given, because of disagreements among the various nations ... There must be a host of political and economic sanctions ... internal opposition to Ahmadinejad must be encouraged - and only if these steps don’t work, a coalition must be built and military sanctions must be taken.

“For this, a strong network is needed, and I am not optimistic that a coalition like this will be formed.”

 

 

 

Al-Qaida

Al-Qaida is a contributing element to unrest throughout the Middle East, the intelligence expert says: “It is on the run and has not succeeded in carrying out a major attack in two years. But it is looking for the weak points in the moderate regimes ... Syria, Egypt, Lebanon and Jordan have become centers of Al-Qaida operations, and it has influence in the PA as well. The Popular Resistance Committees [Gaza terrorist organization] is connected to Al-Qaida.”

 

Political Uncertainty in Lebanon

Asked about Lebanon, Ze’evi-Farkash said that the recent war did not bring about a sufficiently decisive outcome: “Israel impressively destroyed 60% of Hizb’allah’s medium-range rocket capabilities, as well as many command posts. But we did not use our full power. If the army had begun a ground offensive at the start, it would have dealt Hizb’allah a mortal blow.”

Hizb’allah wants to add three ministers to the Lebanese government in order to erase Seniora’s two-thirds majority. If they don’t succeed, they will try to topple the government and even kill Seniora. By the spring of 2007, Hizb’allah may well have rehabilitated itself, bringing about a revolution in the country or at least paralyzing the government.”

 

Syria is Waiting

Ze’evi-Farkash does not feel that Syria will initiate a war against Israel, but notes hostile Syrian activity in every other sphere: “Assad supports Palestinian terrorism, helps Hizb’allah, is considering starting terrorism in the Golan, enables Al-Qaida members to travel freely to Iraq, and is likely to step in if the situation in Lebanon escalates.”

 

Hamas Won’t Change

Ze’evi-Farkash is not optimistic about the Gaza front. “Despite the international isolation and difficult economic situation, Hamas terrorism continues. For Hamas, ideology is more important than pragmatism. Though it is clear that Israel would not fire even one bullet into Gaza if the rockets stop, the terrorists don’t take their own people’s suffering into account, but rather continue their terrorism. I am not optimistic.

“A political solution is on the horizon in the form of a Fatah-Hamas unity government, but even then the change will only be tactical, while the Fatah-Hamas struggle will continue on the backs of the PA residents.”

 

The State of Israel

Ze’evi-Farkash declared “I believe in mutual responsibility in the Nation of Israel, in the Torah of Israel, and in the Land of Israel. The only place where our roots and history can be actualized, and our future can be built, is in Israel. Living in Israel is an import-ant commandment.”

 

ISLAMIC HISTORY EXPERT:

“NO POSSIBILITY OF PEACE!”

Islamic History Professor Moshe Sharon of Hebrew University says: “There is no possibility of peace between Israel and the Palestinians whatsoever - ever.”

Speaking at the Herzliya’s Counter Terrorism Institute, Sharon said that Iran is dead serious about obtaining and using nuclear weapons in order to bring about its vision of an Islamic End of Days.

Sharon dismissed various peace treaties signed by Moslem and Arab officials over the years as “pieces of paper, parts of tactics and strategies … with no meaning.”

Sharon’s assessment focused on the danger posed by Iran. From studying Iranian culture, literature, newspapers, broadcasts and interviews with major players in the Islamic regime, Sharon concludes that a deep belief in a Shi’ite messiah is at the root of Iran’s nuclear project. “They truly believe that the Shi’ite messiah, the 12th Imam (also known as the Mahdi), is here, and that he will reveal himself… What moves the Iranian government and leadership today is first and foremost the wish to bring about the 12th Imam.”

Addressing the theological doctrine of how exactly this Messiah will be revealed, Sharon explained: “How will they bring him? Through an apocalypse. He (the Mahdi) needs a war. He cannot come into this world without an Armageddon. He wants an Armageddon. The earlier we understand this, the better. Ahmadinejad wants nuclear weapons for this!”

“The idea is not that the whole world would necessarily become Moslem at this time, but that the whole world would be subdued under the rule of Islam. This is why [Iranian President Mahmoud] Ahmadinejad seeks nuclear weapons,” he emphasized.

 

 

AVIGDOR LIEBERMAN: “ISRAEL MUST DECLARE ABBAS  IRRELEVANT,

AND WIPE OUT HAMAS LEADERSHIP”

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, who was elected president in 2005, is an ineffective leader and Israel must declare him irrelevant, says Israel’s new deputy PM, Avigdor Lieberman.

Ehud Olmert brought Lieberman into the government in Oct, to shore up a shaky coalition government weakened by the summer war in Lebanon. Lieberman, proposed that Israel wipe out the leadership of the militant Hamas and Islamic Jihad groups.

 

 

“FORGET PEACE, DECLARE WAR!”

Lieberman said that Israel needs to wake up and declare war on the “Palestinians,” who do not truly desire peace with the Jewish state.

The Moldova-born Lieberman enjoys tremendous support among Israel’s large community of immigrants from the former Soviet Union, but since joining the government as minister of strategic affairs, Lieberman’s inflammatory statements, such as Saturday’s call for Hamas’ leaders to be sent to “paradise,” have raised fears that peace efforts will be frozen.

Lieberman told Israel Radio that Israel should work more closely with Jordan in dealing with the West Bank, and ignore Abbas. “We have a reliable partner there which is Jordan,” he said. “We have to coordinate with Jordan. We have to say that Abbas is simply not relevant, we have to ignore him ... He has no authority, no power.”

Lieberman said he believes the Palestinians are not interested in setting up their own state, but only in destroying Israel. He said Israel must abandon past peace deals - the Oslo accords, and the Road Map which are in tatters because of the Palestinian Arabs’ refusal to honour their commitments.

“A continuation of Oslo, of the Road Map ... will lead us to another round of conflict, a much more bloody round, and in the end to an even deeper deadlock, and it threatens our future,” he said.

Lieberman also said that Israel is too soft on the Hamas and Islamic Jihad groups, and their leaders should be wiped out. “I see the entire leadership of Hamas and Jihad walking around freely, and it’s continuing to incite. They have to disappear, to go to paradise, all of them, and there can’t be any compromise.”

Israel has killed a series of Hamas leaders in targeted missile strikes in recent years, including the group’s founder, but has not targeted members of the Hamas-led government elected 10 months ago.

Olmert has tried to distance himself from Lieberman’s hardline positions, as he had in the past, by say-ing that he himself remains committed to the U.S.-backed “road map” peace plan, which envisions an independent Palestinian state alongside Israel.                                                                                                    - AP / Jerusalem  /18 Nov 06

 

 

HAMAS POLITICAL LEADERS GRANTED IMMUNITY

Israel’s National Security Cabinet has decided to step-up targeted precision strikes against Gaza-based terrorists, but accepted the opinion of GSS (General Security Service Shin Bet) director Yuval Diskin, that political figures such as Ismail Haniyeh should be granted immunity. They will not be targeted by the military in the ongoing war on terror. The emphasis would be on halting rocket attacks into the Sderot and the Negev.

Diskin told the Cabinet that targeting Palestinian elected officials would not advance Israel’s agenda, stating it did not do so in the past and the same holds true today.

Once again the ministers released a stern message to the PA, that if the rocket attacks continue, war will follow.

IDF commanders are calling for a major operation intended to clean out Beit Hanoun and other northern areas of Gaza of terrorists and weapons and to distance the rocket launchers from southern Israeli communities.

Military officers and intelligence community officials warn terrorists are working in earnest to continue improving the rockets, which now have an extended range and seemingly more accuracy, striking out at Sderot with some degree of consistency.

In Sderot, life has come to a halt and students remain home rather than attending classes. Thousands of children are in need of psychological care for the day-to-day trauma endured by the relentless firing of rockets into their communities.


 

THE PALESTINIAN-  ISRAELCEASEFIRE

NOV 26. President Abbas phoned Israeli PM Ehud Olmert to inform him, in a telephone call that Palestinian militants had agreed to cease rocket attacks on Israel from the Gaza Strip. Abbas assured Olmert that all the Palestinian factions are committed to the agreement, and asked in response that Israel stop all military operations in the Gaza Strip and withdraw all the forces.

Israel welcomed the move and promised to end its military operations in the Gaza Strip if the Palestinian violence stopped. Olmert told Abbas that Israel would respond favourably as it was operating in the Gaza Strip in response to the violence. With the end of violence, Israel would be happy to withdraw its troops.”

Mr Olmert agreed that Israeli forces would not initiate any offensive action after the ceasefire began. The ceasefire began at 6am on 26th Nov.

Shortly after the ceasefire began, two terrorist groups announced they were not parties to the ceasefire agreement. Islamic Jihad and the Abu Rish Brigades of Fatah declared that they would continue firing rockets at Israeli citizens.

At least five rockets were fired into Israel on the first morning of the ceasefire, and Hamas and Islamic Jihad claimed responsibility. Hamas’ armed wing said it launched the attacks because some Israeli troops were still in Gaza, despite the Israelis saying they had pulled out all their troops overnight.

A statement from the smaller Islamic Jihad group said it would not agree to a ceasefire while Israeli military activity continued in the occupied West Bank.

Ehud Olmert said Israel will show “patience and restraint” despite some rocket fire from Gaza hours after a ceasefire began. Israel had “the strength to show the patience and restraint to allow the ceasefire to take hold,” he said.

Ismail Haniyeh said all Palestinian factions have re-affirmed their commitment to the ceasefire.

In the wake of the rocket-fire, Mahmoud Abbas ordered Palestinian security forces to deploy in northern Gaza and enforce the ceasefire. But it was not clear whether this meant that the security men would actually be expected to use force against militants who might be about to launch rockets. They have been reluctant to do so in the past.

Mr Olmert said he hoped the agreement “can be extended into the West Bank and that it can lead to serious, direct negotiation which could lead to a full settlement.”  - BBC / 26 Nov 06

MK Benny Elon, head of the National Union/National Religious Party, accused Olmert of trying to deceive the public with an agreement that will “explode in our faces,” and that the only solution is for the IDF to conquer Gaza.

Strategic Affairs Minister Avigdor Lieberman said that only an Israeli threat to target the heads of the terror organizations will work. - Arutz

In the first week of the ceasefire there were “only” 15 Kassam rockets fired on Israel.  Good, ay?

 

 

HAMAS COMPROMISE?

Hamas political leader Khaled Mashaal, who is based in Damascus, indicated, reportedly for the first time, a readiness for a two-state solution in which a Palestinian state would arise alongside Israel.

“We give six months to open real political horizons,” he said at a press conference in Cairo. We (the Palestinian factions) agreed to establish a Palestinian state within the  June 4, 1967 (pre-Six Day War) borders.”

However, Mashaal warned that unless an agreement with Israel was reached within six months, a “third intifada” would erupt. “Hamas will become stronger and the resistance will resume.”

An Israeli spokesman declined to comment on Mashaal’s statement. Israel has expressed readiness to see the creation of a Palestinian state but insists that such a state must recognise the legitimacy of Israel and declare its readiness to live peacefully alongside it.  - Reuters, AFP / 27 Nov 06

 

RUMBLINGS OF REGIONAL ERUPTION DESPITE CEASEFIRE

David Dolan in Jerusalem reported that the ceasefire came just one day after the Hamas movement threatened to launch a new anti-Israel attrition war within six months if government officials in Jerusalem do not agree to their suicidal demand that the radical Muslim group be allowed to set up an independent state with Jerusalem’s sacred Old City as its capital.

Just before the Israeli-Palestinian ceasefire was announced, Israeli military leaders were busy at work on a new plan of potential action. It was designed to stem the rising tide of Palestinian rockets raining down on Israeli communities, especially upon the long-besieged northern Negev town of Sderot. 

The need for a wide-scale operation became apparent to most Israeli leaders after two civilian residents of the town were killed in the space of less than one week by Kassam rockets exploding in the town.  Analysts said the fact that a new major military offensive was being prepared was the most likely reason that radical Palestinian factions agreed to halt their rocket attacks late in the month, at least for the time being. 

The new Israeli army plan is still expected to be presented to government leaders despite the November 25 ceasefire.  Analysts said this would give cabinet ministers a reserve plan of action in case intensive Palestinian rocket fire resumes.  They added that the plan’s existence will also provide Palestinian leaders with a strong incentive to abide by the ceasefire. 

The army plan reportedly focuses on a major ground operation that could mirror the 2002 IDF “Defensive Shield” campaign carried out in Judea and Samaria following the deaths of nearly 100 Israeli civilians in terrorist attacks early that year.  Thousands of Israeli reserve soldiers would reportedly be called up for active duty, this time to support regular army forces who would effectively reoccupy large portions of the Gaza Strip.  Press reports said the army plan proposes that Israeli forces take control over most of the northern third of the small coastal zone, along with the southern Philadelphi corridor where it is known that up to 100 Palestinian tunnels have been dug in recent months to smuggle in banned weapons from Egypt.   

Instead of modifying its radical positions, the overall Hamas Damascus-based leader, Khaled Mashaal, said that a “third intifada” will be launched against Israel if the Olmert government does not agree to uproot over 300,000 Jews from their homes in Samaria, Judea and the eastern half of Jerusalem, and permit the fanatical group to establish a sovereign anti-Israel state in the evacuated areas. 

Since this is obviously not about to occur, Israeli officials are now bracing themselves for a possible wave of Hamas rocket attacks upon Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, and other central Israeli cities, perhaps coinciding with a Syrian military assault on the Golan Heights and renewed Hizb’allah missile strikes from Lebanon.  Many analysts say such a new regional war is apparently being planned by Iran in an attempt to keep Israel from launching military action against Tehran’s escalating nuclear program. 

 

OLMERT OUTLINES PEACE VISION

PROMISES PALESTINIAN STATE AND CALLS ON PA TO ABANDON TERROR

NOV 27. As a ceasefire takes hold in the Gaza Strip the  Israeli  PM  hopes  to  revive  long-stalled  peace efforts with the Palestinians.

In  a  major  policy  speech,  Ehud  Olmert  pledged humanitarian and economic incentives if militants freed the captive Israeli soldier, Cpl. Gilad Shalit, and if violence ceased. He also spoke of releasing many Palestinian detainees in Israeli jails, and lifting restrictions on the occupied territories and ultimately creating a viable state. (Shalit was kidnapped by Hamas operatives in a cross-border raid from Gaza last June.)

Mr Olmert said, “I hereby declare that when Gilad Shalit is released and returned to his family, safe and sound, the Government of Israel will be willing to release numerous Palestinian prisoners – including ones who were sentenced to lengthy prison terms – in order to increase the trust between us and prove that our hand is truly extended in genuine peace.”

Mr Olmert said the Palestinians now stood at an ‘historic crossroads.’ “Palestinians would see substantive improvements in their lives if they chose the path of peace,” he said. “We will agree to leave large territories and dismantle settlements that we established.”  But he also warned of the dire consequences if violence continued.

Olmert called on PA leaders to “open a new page” and come back to the negotiating table for peace talks with Israel. “You must stop terror and recognize our right to live in peace, and you must give up the demand for the ‘right of return’,” he said in remarks aimed directly at the PA government.

 

The “right of return” refers to the Arab claim that millions of Arabs now living in other countries and whose ancestors lived in Israel prior to the re-establishment of the Jewish state, must be allowed to “return” to live in Israel. The issue has been a major point of contention in peace negotiations between the PA and Israel. (Mahmoud Abbas said at a recent Arab conference that the “right of return” is a condition for establishing a Palestinian state.)

Olmert said that the Gaza-based “terror, violence, murders and incessant attacks against the citizens of Israel are liable to lead us closer to a new and painful wave of terrible violence. The uncompromising radicalism of your terror organizations – the Hamas, Jihad, the El-Aksa Martyrs’ Brigade and other organizations – did not bring you closer to attaining the goal which I am convinced many of you share: the establishment of a Palestinian state, which will guarantee you a future of prosperity and which will exist in good neighbourly relations side-by-side with the State of Israel.”

He therefore said he now “proposes a different path.” He suggested that if “a new Palestinian government is established – a government which will be committed to the principles of the Quartet, implement the Roadmap and bring about the release of Gilad Shalit, I will invite Abu-Mazen (Mahmoud Abbas) to meet with me immediately, in order to conduct a real, open, genuine and serious dialogue between us.”

The prime minister also said that Israel would be willing to surrender parts of Judea and Samaria in return for peace. He promised a Palestinian state “with territorial contiguity in Judea and Samaria,” and borders that will be defined “in accordance with President Bush’s April 14th, 2004 letter to Prime Minister Ariel Sharon - borders that will be different from the territories currently under Israel’s control.”

 

 

PALESTINIAN RESPONSE

The Palestinian Authority gave a lukewarm reaction to Ehud Olmert’s offer to withdraw from large parts of the West Bank and return to the negotiating table, while Hamas described the statements as a “conspiracy.”

Olmert’s statements are “not in accordance with the Road Map and the [2002] Arab peace initiative,” said a spokesman for President Abbas. “We want the implementation of the UN resolutions concerning the establishment of a Palestinian state within the territories that were occupied in 1967. With regards to the issue of the refugees, we want a solution based on United Nations resolution 194. The only way to achieve peace is by implementing the Road Map and the Arab peace initiative, and not by coming up with new initiatives. We need serious negotiations and actions, not only words.”

Hamas spokesmen, on the other hand, denounced Olmert’s statements as “a new conspiracy” against the Palestinians. Referring to Olmert’s demand that the Palestinians relinquish the right of return for the refugees to their original homes inside Israel, Ghazi Hamad, spokesman for the Hamas-led government said: “This is a conspiracy, especially since Olmert is trying to bypass the core of the Palestinian cause, namely the right of return for the refugees. This speech is lacking in clarity.”

Syria-based Musa Abu Marzouk, the No. 2 man in the Hamas leadership, said the right of return for the refugees is “sacred” for all Palestinians. “The Palestinian people will never give up this sacred right,” he said. “Our people have been fighting for 58 years to achieve the right of return for all those who were expelled from their homeland. We reject any deal that does not recognize the right of return.”

Hamas’s parliamentary list condemned Olmert’s remarks as a “deceit intended to beautify the face of the occupation.” The list said that the Palestinians are insisting that Israel remove all the settlements from the West Bank.

Palestinian militant groups have warned that the ceasefire which came into force on Sunday could collapse unless Israel halts military operations in the West Bank.

 

TERRORISTS SAY “CEASEFIRE ENABLES

ARMS SMUGGLING AND TRAINING”

On the first day of the ceasefire, leaders of major terrorist groups in Gaza said they either do not recognize the ceasefire agreement, or that they plan to use it to re-arm and improve terrorist training.

Abu Abir, spokesman for the Hamas-linked Popular Resistance Committees terrorist organization in Gaza, “The ceasefire offers a period of calm for our fighters to recover and prepare for our final goal of evacuating Palestine.”

Terrorist leaders said the ceasefire will be used to smuggle weapons into Gaza, reinforce and train “fighter units,” and produce rockets for a future confrontation with the Jewish State.

Abu Abdullah, a senior leader of Hamas’ “military wing,” told WorldNetDaily that Hamas agreed to the ceasefire “because we need a period of calm to recuperate. This lull in fighting will not bring us to speak about peace.”

Abu Luay, a leader of Islamic Jihad in Gaza, said Israel’s weak stance “proves that our rocket attacks work. The Zionists know there is no remedy for our rockets .. rocket attacks against Israel would resume at a time of our choosing,” he added.

IDF military intelligence chief Amos Yadlin and General Security Service (Shin Bet) director Yuval Diskin both recently warned the Knesset that PA terrorists will soon achieve military capability similar to that of the Hizb’allah guerilla terrorist organization in Lebanon.

Both security chiefs urged Knesset Members to allow the IDF to launch a major offensive into Gaza to prevent PA terrorists from upgrading their military preparedness, in order to avoid a scenario similar to the debacle that took place during the Lebanon war this summer.

After that war, numerous IDF reservists and other groups charged that Israel badly underestimated the military capability of Hizb’allah. They said Hizb’allah had used the time following Israel’s pullout from southern Lebanon in 2000 in order to re-arm and upgrade its military skills.  Now a similar situation is on the horizon in Gaza.

Ehud Olmert, however, told reporters he had faith that the ceasefire could lead to a comprehensive peace deal with the PA. Olmert said Israel would show “patience and restraint” despite the violations.

Several terror organizations said they did not recognize and would not be bound by the ceasefire agreement.

Hamas-led PA officials announced that some 13,000 PA troops have been deployed along the entire northern Gaza border with Israel as a deterrent force to prevent Kassam rockets being fired at Israel  -  Arutz / 28 Nov, 06

 

 

OLMERT’S SPEECH ANGERS MANY

“How can it be that the Prime Minister, the leader of our party, talks about a new broad diplomatic plan without even consulting with his own party members?”

Two Kadima Knesset Members have scathing criticism for Ehud Olmert. “Because there’s a ceasefire for a day and a half, we have to go and promise a Palestinian state and the release of terrorist prisoners?” said one. Another said he categorically opposes Olmert’s plan as it was articulated yesterday, noting that other MKs feel the same way.

MK Tzvi Hendel, of the National Union party, was disgusted by Olmert’s offer to destroy more Jewish communities. “I have no expectations,” he said, “from a man who is so devoid of morality that in the middle of a terrorism war, and amidst threats of murderous terrorism from every direction, he is not embarrassed to promise the enemy the expulsion of the residents and the establishment of a terror state.” Hendel also said he expects Avigdor Lieberman (Yisrael Beiteinu) and Eli Yishai (Shas) “not to betray their voters, and to immediately quit the Olmert government.”

Speaking at a memorial to David Ben-Gurion, Israel’s first prime minister, Olmert said he believes Ben-Gurion would have supported his plan - but MK Gilad Erdan of the Likud said it is more likely that Ben-Gurion is actually turning over in his grave “at the military and diplomatic blindness shown by the Prime Minister.”

MK Erdan said that Olmert “continues to ignore the warnings of the security leaders, choosing instead to deal with withdrawals and retreats instead of strengthening Israel’s strength and deterrence power.”

MK Yuval Shteinitz (Likud), a former Chairman of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, condemned Olmert for offering to make an agreement with a group that has broken all agreements in the past.

“The speech symbolizes the end of Israel’s determination to fight terrorism,” said Shteinitz. “Olmert promises land to Hamas, which has murderously violated all the previous agreements and truces without changing its principles and charter.”

On the other hand, far-left Meretz MK Chaim Oron said, “Finally, the mantra that ‘we have no partner’ has been replaced. The Government of Israel must act to strengthen the PA’s national unity government that will arise and conduct a real dialogue towards a permanent arrangement that will bring an end to the cycle of bloodshed in our region.”

The Labor Party welcomed Olmert’s speech. Faction whip MK Yoram Marciano said, “Labor supports Olmert’s diplomatic initiative and peace moves, as they were expressed [in his speech]... In response, the Palestinian Authority must stretch out its arm in peace and lay down its arms in order to create a life of hope and peace between the two nations.” - Arutz / Nov 29

 

1,400 TERRORISTS FOR GILAD SHALIT?

Reports of an imminent prisoner-exchange deal are once again in the air. This time, they speak of up to 1,400 Arab terrorist prisoners going free in three stages, in return for Gilad Shalit.

 

Egypt’s Minister of Intelligence, Omar Suleimon, is seeking to finalize the details of the agreement. Egypt figures heavily in the deal: the abducted soldier Gilad Shalit is scheduled to be transferred to that country and from there to Israel, as part of the deal.

The agreement under consideration stipulates the following three steps: An unknown number of Palestinian terrorists currently incarcerated in Israel for various crimes will be set free, immediately after which Corp. Shalit is to be transferred to Egypt. A second group of terrorists will then be freed, followed by Shalit’s return to Israel. In the third stage, Israel will free a final group of terrorists.

Similar agreements have reportedly been “nearly ready” several times in the past as well, yet did not materialize.

The question of releasing hundreds of terrorists in exchange for kidnapped Israelis has long been a controversial one in Israel. IDF historian Meir Pa’il totally dismisses the theory that if Israel gives in to Hamas demands, terrorists will kidnap more Israelis. “It’s important for every soldier and Israeli to know,” Pa’il said, “that if he is taken captive, we’ll do everything to redeem him.”

Col. (ret.) Meir Indor of the Almagor Terror Victims Association retorts, “That’s important, but it’s also important for every soldier and every Israeli to know that he won’t be the next candidate for kidnapping. The kidnappers must be dealt with forcefully.” – Arutz / 29 Nov

 

ISRAEL BEING SURROUNDED BY “ARC OF HATE”

Israel now finds itself surrounded by an arc of hate stretching from Beirut and Damascus in the north, to Tehran in the east, and back to Gaza in the south. Along each chord of this arc, foes are diligently arming themselves and preparing for battle, both verbally and in practice. It seems safe to assume that these coordinated efforts are all linked to the inevitable confrontation that is looming over the region regarding Iran’s nuclear program.

Just as Iran sought to send a message to Israel and the US this summer by provoking an outbreak of hostilities in Lebanon, so too Tehran now appears determined to lay the groundwork for a much greater, and far more ambitious, flare-up, one that would threaten to consume the entire region. The Iranians presumably view this as their trump card, thinking that it will give them the means of forestalling a possible US or Israeli attack on their nuclear facilities.

How should Israel react to this growing threat? First, we must learn the lesson of this summer’s Lebanon war, which was disastrous because we sat back and allowed our enemies to build up their military infra-structure over time. Instead of making this same mistake once again, Israel should take whatever steps are necessary to interdict weapons shipments to the terrorists, seal off their supply routes, and hit hard at those who are sending them the weapons in the first place.

Second, as our foes are openly preparing for war, the government needs to begin seriously contemplating the possibility of launching pre-emptive and wide-ranging military strikes.  The last thing Israel needs right now is another painful conflict, but it needs to be ready for the challenge.  –Source / The Jerusalem Post / Oct. 18, 06

 

IRAN SLOWLY SECURING ITS GRIP

AROUND ISRAEL

A nuclear threat is only one of several Iranian problems facing Israel as the Islamic Republic increases its influence in Gaza and Lebanon.The Iranian government has donated $120 million to the Hamas-led Palestinian Authority and it is gradually extending its influence over the region surrounding Israel.

According to the PA Foreign Minister Mahmoud al-Zahar who met in Tehran with Ali Larijani, the head of national security in Iran, Iran will supply more aid.

PA terrorists have significantly stepped up their Kassam rocket attacks against southern Israeli communities recently. Sderot residents have said the rockets are increasing in accuracy, and now contain more explosives as well as ball bearings to maximize damage upon impact.

Meanwhile, international efforts to stop Iran’s nuclear development activities have slowly ground to a halt. Despite threats by the U.N. Security Council to impose sanctions against the Islamic Republic if it did not end its uranium enrichment program by the end of August, the program continues uninterrupted, and no action has been taken against Iran.

RUSSIA SUPPLYING IRAN WITH

ADVANCED DEFENCE SYSTEM

Iran’s news agency reported that Russia is providing Tehran with TOR-M1 ground-to-air missiles. The move is seen as preparing Iran for a strike by Israel or the U.S. against its nuclear program.

According to Israel Aircraft Industries (IAI) information, the TOR-M1 surface-to-air missile system is a mobile, integrated, air defense system, designed for operation at medium, low, and very low altitudes, against fixed/rotary wing aircraft, UAVs, guided missiles and precision weapons. IAI reports the deal between Russia and Iran was signed last December, and delivery began in November.

The system is capable of operating in an intensive aerial jamming environment.  It is effective against precision guided weapons and cruise missiles.

Deliveries of the TOR systems to Iran are expected to continue through 2008. The $1-billion deal covers the procurement of up to 29 TOR M-1 missile systems, modernization of air-force systems and the supply of patrol boats. The TOR component of the deal was reported to be $700 million.

The new defence system would make attempts at an aerial assault against Iran’s nuclear facilities considerably more complicated. - Arutz /27 Nov 06

AHMADINEJAD:

 

“ISRAEL’S DESTRUCTION NEAR”

According to the Iranian media, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad declared that Israel was destined to ‘disappearance and destruction’ at a council meeting with Iranian ministers. 

“The western powers created the Zionist regime in order to expand their control of the area. This regime massacres Palestinians every day, but since this regime is against nature, we will soon witness its disappearance and destruction,” Ahmadinejad said. – AFP /13 Nov 06

 

IRAN INTENT ON MOVING AWAY FROM THE DOLLAR

Iran has openly declared its decision to move away from the dollar in foreign-exchange transactions. At an e-commerce conference in Tehran in mid Nov., Iran’s Minister of Economy and Finance presented the policy as a defensive move aimed at blocking Washington’s ability to monitor and interfere with Iran’s conduct of international business.

Some U.S. banks have been disrupting our dollar transactions for a long time and Iran, in return, has been decreasing its dependence on the dollar.  The U.S. Treasury in September barred Iran’s state-run Bank Saderat from having any links with U.S.-owned banks because of Iran’s support of terrorism.

The Bush administration sees Iran’s decision as economic warfare, a move calculated to weaken the dollar in retaliation for the US seeking UN Security Council sanctions against Iran’s continued uranium enrichment.

Saddam Hussein “signed his death warrant” by getting the UN to agree Iraq could hold foreign exchange currency in Euros resulting from “oil for food” transactions.  Iran may now be signing a virtual “death warrant” by its intention of creating an oil exchange pricing oil in Euros.

Because of the US’s continuing budget and trade deficits, the Bush administration will react strongly to any suggestion that world international markets might move away from dollar transactions or dollar holdings of foreign exchange currency.

 

CHINA ADDS THE PRESSURE ON DOLLAR

China, which now holds $1 trillion in their foreign exchange currency, presents another threat, especially since it declared its intention to diversify their holdings more into Euros. This threatens the ability of the US Treasury to float its budget deficits by selling U.S. government debt into the foreign exchange currency holdings market.”

China recently signed a multi-billion dollar deal “guaranteed to make Iran one of the major suppliers of oil and natural gas to China for decades to come.”

“If China joins Iran in pressuring the dollar, the dollar faces a devaluation much faster than the Bush administration has allowed the US public to know.”             

Source: WorldNetDaily.com / Nov 16, 06

 

WHERE IS THERE SECURITY THESE DAYS?

 

My dear Reader,

You can see the seriousness of the times, I’m sure. And if you have read right through this Alert to these last two pages, I think I might be right in assuming that you are concerned - to say the least - about the state of the world, and about your own security.

Security in these times is very fragile. It’s insecurity that is the hallmark of the present age.

But when it comes to the question of your salvation and eternal destination, there is a very real security available for you, a security that is a solid rock. But we need to anchor onto that rock. That Rock is Y’shua, Jesus the Messiah! And His Name, Y’shua, means “Yahweh, the Eternal One, is salvation.”

Y’shua is “The Rock of Ages” - the everlasting Rock. (Isaiah 26:4). And Y’shua is the “Saviour of the world.”

 

But that expression “Saviour of the world” does not mean that everyone in the world will be automatically saved. No! Jesus is the Saviour for every one in the world who will trust in Him for salvation. And He is willing to save all who believe and call on His Name. It is written clearly in Scripture:

 

“WHOEVER WILL CALL UPON THE NAME OF Y’SHUA the LORD WILL BE SAVED.” (Romans 10:13)

 

“THE WORD IS NEAR YOU, IN YOUR MOUTH AND IN YOUR HEART – that is, the Word of faith which we are proclaiming, that if you confess with your mouth Y’shua as Lord - your Sovereign Master, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; for with the heart man believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.”      (Romans 10:8-10)

 

It is as simple as that! Cast your anchor (your faith) onto the solid Rock. There is nothing you can do to  earn, or help to pay for your salvation.  The tremendous cost of your salvation was paid for by the Messiah when He shed His blood and died on the cross at Calvary, paying the penalty for your sins.

 

“For you know that it was not with perishable things like silver or gold that you were redeemed from the futile way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, but with the precious blood of the Messiah, a Lamb without blemish or defect.”   (1 Peter 1:18-19)

“And they sang a new song to the Lamb-the Messiah: ‘You are worthy to take the scroll, and to open its seals, for You were slain, and by Your blood You have redeemed us to God out of every tribe, language, people and nation’.”                                       (Revelation 5:9)

 

If you have not yet believed in, and called on the Messiah to be your Saviour, please do not delay. Today is the day of salvation. Tomorrow may be too late! He is waiting and ready to forgive your sin, and to receive you into His family. Pray to Him simply, from your heart, and settle the matter now.

“The transgressors will be destroyed together; the final result of the wicked will be, to be cut off. But the salvation of the righteous (believers) is from YHWH - their strength in time of trouble. And YHWH helps them, and delivers them. He delivers them from the wicked, and saves them, because they trust and take refuge in Him.” (Psalm 37:38-40)

 

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