– February 2008. “DIVING GOD’S LAND”
“THEY HAVE DIVIDED UP MY LAND”
“Yahweh has a controversy with the nations.”
gather all the nations, and bring them down to the valley of Yehoshafat
(in Jerusalem). There I will enter into judgment against them on
behalf of My people and My inheritance, Israel, whom they have scattered
among the nations; and
have divided up My land.”
“I WILL BRING PEACE TO THE MIDDLE EAST”
ON December 20, 2004,
President George W Bush predicted that he would bring peace between
Israel and the Palestinians during his second term in office.
“I want you to know
that I am going to invest a lot of time and a lot of creative thinking
so that there will finally be peace between Israel and the
Palestinians,” he told the Israeli newspaper Yedioth Aharonoth.
“I am convinced that, during this term, I will manage to bring peace.”
Over the past year,
2007, Mr Bush and his Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice, have been
seeking to make good on that promise.
The Annapolis summit
in Maryland sponsored by the US last November, brought together leaders
from some 40 nations to propel the “peace process” forward.
In January (08),
during his 8-day trip to Israel, Ramallah, and five Arab states, Mr Bush
confidently proclaimed ...
“PALESTINE WILL EMERGE BEFORE I LEAVE OFFICE.”
On Jan. 8th, the day
Bush left DC to head for his first stop, Israel, there was a
once-in-50-years freak mid- winter Tornado outbreak in the USA. One of
the tornados ripped through an obscure town in Arkansas called
destroying the main church in the town.
Jan, when Bush was scheduled to take a 15-minute helicopter ride to
Ramallah, the whole area was covered with
fog. So the
Americans had to put together a 45-car convoy to accompany Bush to the
Palestinian “capital” to meet Mahmoud Abbas and other Palestinian
Near the end of the
trip in which he actively promoted his (and the Saudi) plan to divide
God’s Land, President Bush visited Saudi Arabia. There he announced a
$US 20 billion arms deal
with the Saudi
That arms deal was
made, at least in part, to bolster the faltering US economy, and to keep
the Saudis on side. But the LORD can wipe out any such gains in a
moment. In fact, the day he returned from the Middle East, Bush faced a
nightmare on Wall St. Two US banks (Citibank and Merrill Lynch) were
forced to increase their emergency funding lifeline to $US 21 billion
after Citibank had posted a loss of $US 9.83 billion for the last
(For my Indian
readers, $9.83 billion is equivalent to around Rs. 380,00,00,00,000 - Rs
380 billion - or thirty-eight thousand crore rupees! That is Citibank’s
loss for 3 months!)
Foreign investors in
Japan, Korea, Singapore, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait have come to the US
rescue by agreeing to pump $US19 billion into the US banks.
GOD HAS A
NATIONS THAT DIVIDE HIS LAND
have divided up My land.”
President Bush, like
President Clinton and others before them, is doomed to fail in his
rationalistic and self-serving “peace plans” for God’s Land! And the
7-year covenant Antichrist arbitrates will also be a failure.
There will no true
peace in the Middle East, or the world in general, until the Prince of
Peace, Y’shua the Messiah, returns and establishes the Kingdom of God.
Until then, the
nations will go on hoping, striving, and warring. But when they say ...
“‘Peace and safety!’
then destruction will come upon them suddenly like birth pangs upon a
woman with child; and they shall not escape.”
ABBAS SOUNDS OPTIMISTIC
On December 31, 07,
Palestinian President Abbas proclaimed …
BE THE YEAR OF OUR VICTORY!”
“We are filled with
hope that this new year will be our year of victory and independence,
that we will see the establishment of a Palestinian state with Jerusalem
as its capital,” he said.
Mahmoud Abba called
on Israel to resolve “core issues” that are obstructing the way to
peace, while still maintaining the PA will never cede a single inch of
ground on Jerusalem in negotiations.
Speaking at a
celebration marking a Fatah anniversary in Ramallah, Abbas also extended
a new conciliatory hand to the rival Hamas faction. The president
called for ‘‘a new page,” and offered a credible agreement based on
partnership, on life, on our homeland, and on our struggle to liberate
At the same time
Abbas maintained his position that Hamas must restore power in Gaza to
an elected government. But he urged reconciliation and called for new
elections in an effort to end the suffering that Palestinian people have
endured as a result of the takeover. ‘‘I renew my offer for early
elections here, as a way out of the hell that was imposed on us,’’ he
remember that just a year ago, Mr Abbas was telling Palestinians
“RAISE YOUR RIFLES ONLY AGAINST
THE ISRAELI OCCUPATION”
“Shooting at your
brother is forbidden. Raising rifles against the occupation is our
legitimate right, but raising guns against each other is forbidden. We
should put our internal fighting aside and raise our rifles only against
the Israeli occupation,” Abbas said.
His statements about
using rifles against Israel came after the US and Ehud Olmert, provided
7000 assault rifles, and more than 1 million rounds of ammunition, to
militias associated with Abbas’ Fatah party.
At the same time
Abbas used Koranic verses to claim Jews are corrupting the world. “The
sons of Israel are mentioned as those who are corrupting humanity on
earth,” he said during a portion of his speech in which he criticized
recent Israeli anti-terror raids in Samaria.
remarks and call to arms against the Jewish state were not quoted in
hundreds of English-language articles reporting the Abbas speech.
THAT PA RIFLES WON´T BE AIMED AT ISRAEL
Two days after Abbas
told Arabs to “raise your rifles” only against Israel, Condoleezza Rice
said the US will prevent a repeat of previous attacks on Israel with
arms supplied to PA forces.
“This is a
train-and-equip program that is going to move over time, so it is not as
if you simply arm the Palestinians on Day One and then have no input or
control over what happens from then on,” she said. “I think as a result
you can maintain some control on what is being done.”
The US has been
supplying the PA chairman’s personal militia with weapons to give him a
military edge over the rival Hamas militia. Terrorists, however, have
vowed that the weapons will be used against Israel, as they were in the
1990s when the Israeli government, headed by then-Prime Minister
Yitzchak Rabin, gave the PA security forces thousands of rifles.
Dr Rice said:
“We continue to work
on how to help Mahmoud Abbas and how to help the Palestinian people
create governing structures and security forces that can actually secure
the Palestinian people.”
But Fatah Force 17
security officer Abu Yousef said that other terrorist groups will use
the weapons. He added that many of the members of Abbas’ personal
militia also are members of other terrorist organizations, including
A leader in Hamas’
Izzedine al-Qassam Martyrs Brigades said, weapons procured as a result
of the US shipment, will be used against Israel. “The more the Americans
give Abbas weapons, the more weapons we will have in the future to use
against the Israelis, because it incites the different organizations to
intensify their own supply of weapons.”
spokesman, Abu Oubaida, also said that his terror group will obtain any
American weapons transferred to Fatah militias or purchased by Fatah. “I
can confirm 100% that this money and purchased weapons will find its way
BUSH PRODS ISRAEL & PALESTINIANS ON PEACE
Mr Bush arrived in
Israel on 9th Jan to a lavish welcome ceremony, at which he described
Israel as the USA’s “strongest and most trusted ally.”
At Ben Gurion
Airport, Israeli leaders and dignitaries turned out in force to pay
their respects to the man regarded as the country’s most powerful
Bush received no less
respectful a reception when he travelled to the West Bank to be greeted
by Mahmoud Abbas and the rest of the Palestinian leadership.
In his welcoming
comments, Abbas told Bush, the Palestinian Arabs “know that you are the
first president guaranteeing our right to live in an independent state
which will live in peace alongside its neighbours.
“Your visit is
historic and gives our people real hope,” continued Mahmoud Abbas who
has fought in the vanguard of the PLO since its beginning.
With the outward sign
of goodwill, Bush may have been tempted to believe that peace could
finally be at hand in this tortured land. And immediately he began to
nudge the Israelis and Palestinians towards a comprehensive peace deal
Mr Bush said he was
sure both Olmert and Abbas “understand the importance of two states
living side by side in peace. President Abbas and PM Olmert have to come
together and make tough choices ... And I believe it is possible - not
only possible, I believe
going to happen
- that there will be
a signed peace treaty by the time I leave office”- this time next year.
To achieve this, he added, both sides would have to honour their
commitments under the “road map.”
Israeli PM Ehud
Olmert told Mr Bush in a joint news conference that “there will be no
peace” unless attacks are halted from all parts of the Palestinian
territories, including those not controlled by his negotiating partners
in the Palestinian leadership. But, he said, both sides “are very
seriously trying to move forward” on a peace agreement.
“Israel does not
tolerate and will not tolerate the continuation of these vicious
attacks,” Olmert said, after 2˝ hours of talks with Bush. “We will not
hesitate to take all the necessary measures. There will be no peace
unless terror is stopped. And terror will have to be stopped
bush welcomed in
In Ramallah, Mr Abbas
welcomed Mr Bush’s “commitment to the peace process,” which he said the
Palestinian people would not forget.
He claimed the
Palestinian people are “committed to peace, want to move freely in their
country, with no roadblocks, [separation] fence or settlements. We want
to see a different future, without thousands of prisoners in jail and
innocent deaths. We want to stop the closure.” He said he wanted “a
different future” for the Palestinians instead of the present reality of
“hospitals full of innocent victims,” checkpoints, and “humiliation
Abbas said the two
sides had begun discussions on the core issues that divide them, and
said he wanted a resolution before the end of the year. “Peace in the
world starts from here, the sacred land.” He underscored the PA position
that there can be no peace without lifting (the Israeli) security
restrictions, and ultimately, the creation of a PA state with Jerusalem
as its capital.
Mr Bush tried to
exhibit a spirit of optimism at a joint news conference with Abbas in
Ramallah, but he did not hide his concern about the deep divide between
the positions of Israel and the PA.
Bush noted that
little could be accomplished while Israel is forced to maintain a
constant state of alert against terrorism emanating from PA territories.
“The Israelis,” he said bluntly, “don’t want a state on their border
from which attacks can be launched. I can understand that. The
checkpoints create a sense of security for Israel but they create
frustration for Palestinians.”
“Tough choices” must
be made in order to reach a settlement between Israel and the PA, he
said, adding that he believed the two leaders are committed to the
process. The clock is ticking, however. “I’m on a timetable,” Bush told
reporters. “I’ve got 12 months.”
Speaking at the press
conference in Ramallah, Bush said he believes Israel and the
Palestinians will sign a peace treaty enabling the creation of
historical land of Israel
by the end of his term in the White House, within one year from now.
Pressed on the
problems posed for Palestinians by the many Israeli checkpoints, he said
the checkpoints create massive frustration for the Palestinians. “After
driving through the checkpoints, I can understand Palestinian
resentment; but I also understand Israel’s need for security and
non-acceptance of a state from which missiles are fired. And,” he added,
“no part of your territories can be ‘a safe haven for terrorists’.”
On a tone of reproof
to Israel, Bush said: “Israelis should help and not hinder the formation
of the effectiveness of the Palestinian security forces. To the extent
that the Israeli military undermines the Authority - that is something
we do not agree with.”
The US president
outlined his objective as being “a state that can defend itself
internally and give confidence to its neighbors that checkpoints won’t
be needed. The objective is continuous territory. Abbas can’t be assured
of a future without contiguous territory. There should be no checkpoints
in the Palestinian state-to-be.”
US president, stopping the missile and mortar attacks on Sderot seemed
less important than removing the checkpoints in the Palestinian
state-to-be, “so that a state can emerge.”
The Palestinians had
to decide whether they wanted “a state, or the status quo” he said. “One
vision is represented by Mr Abbas’ Fatah movement, the other, by rival
Palestinian group Hamas, who had “created chaos.”
CONTINUING TERROR ROLE
JAN 7, 08.
Quoting from an internal document of the Israeli military, Debkafile
al Aqsa Brigades
is responsible for 32% of the Qassam missiles fired against Israeli
communities from Gaza, and for more than 40% of the mortar rounds.
Fatah’s Al Aqsa
Martyrs Brigade in the Gaza Strip takes its orders directly from the
movement’s leader, Mahmoud Abbas.
PA security agencies
own at least 40% of the explosives and materials for making missiles
smuggled into Gaza via Sinai. Fatah agents buy explosives from smugglers
in Sinai and rent space in smuggling tunnels.
Fatah’s regression to
full-scale terrorism appears to be motivated by fear of losing to Hamas,
all credibility on the Palestinian street.
So as not to derail
the talks, the Israeli government is hushing up this information. The
hush extends to Shin Bet’s findings on the truth about the PA’s
purported “campaign to suppress terror on the West Bank.” Spinning the
revolving door, Palestinian security agencies round up Hamas terrorist
suspects and political figures only to release them two or three days
CHARGES $3,000 A DAY FOR
The Israel news
service, Arutz Sheva, has reported that Hamas has taken over the
estimated 150 smuggling-tunnels from Egypt into Gaza, and charges the
owners $3,000 each per day.
Five tunnels were
blown up by Hamas because their owners didn’t agree to pay the fee. The
other diggers/owners quickly agreed to pay the requested fee, enabling
Hamas to attain a monopoly on the tunnels.
While the 150 tunnels
bring in a total of some $150 million annually, the value of men,
weapons and other merchandise smuggled in each year total more than
three times that amount - close to a half-billion dollars.
Some of the tunnels
specialize in weapons, cash, food, medicine and computer equipment,
while others carry dangerous drugs. Of late, Hamas military commanders
are using the tunnels to return to Gaza.
In a paper he wrote
recently for the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, a former IDF
Maj.-Gen. said: “The Palestinians have brought into Gaza more than
30,000 rifles during the past two years, more than six million rounds of
ammunition, more than 230 tons of explosives, and scores of anti-tank
and anti-aircraft missiles. These are the weapons Israel will face next
time. The next round in Gaza will look more like Lebanon than what
Israel faced in Operation Defensive Shield in Judea and Samaria in 2002.
HAMAS ARMY IS BEING BUILT UP
MK Yuval Shteinitz (Likud),
a former Chairman of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defence Committee,
has warned of the development of a “large, Iranian-backed Hamas army,
just like Hizbullah, while Egypt turns a blind eye and even gives aid to
“This army,” he said,
“is being built just 30 km from Ashdod and 60 km from Tel Aviv.”
CONSTRUCTION IN WEST BANK AND EAST JERUSALEM
Palestinian anger has
mounted over Israeli plans to build new housing in east Jerusalem and
the West Bank. Those areas, which constitute the Biblical Judea and
Samaria, were captured by Israel in the 1967 Mideast war, “The West
Bank” is the name given to the area when it was annexed by Jordan after
the war of 1948-49.
claim the West Bank and Gaza for their future state.
Ms Rice said that
Israeli construction in Palestinian-claimed east Jerusalem constitutes
settlement activity and is opposed by the U.S. Her comments, published
in The Jerusalem Post, marked the US administration’s strongest
criticism yet of Israeli policies in disputed east Jerusalem. Treading
carefully, Bush didn’t go as far as Rice, but said unauthorized and
“illegal” Jewish settlement outposts
in the West Bank must go.
Some 270,000 Jewish
settlers live in the West Bank, many of them in the major settlement
blocs of Ma’aleh Adumim, Ariel and Etzion.
At immediate issue
are several Israeli projects, including a new tender for 307 housing
units in Har Homa, in Jerusalem’s southeast corner, and a new project in
northern Jerusalem near the old Atarot airport.
Har Homa is just
north of Bethlehem, and is home to 8,500 people. It is part of a ring of
Jewish neighbourhoods around east Jerusalem where about 180,000 Israelis
Har Homa is
considered the latest bastion of Zionism, having three religious youth
groups, two synagogues, many daily prayer services, two religious
schools, Talmudei Torah, nurseries, and an abundance of Torah classes.
And two more religious schools plan to relocate to Har Homa.
CONSTRUCTION WITHOUT OLMERT’S PERMISSION
Olmert told Mahmoud
Abbas; “Israel will not take any new steps that will have ramifications
on that which is being done on the ground.”
Israeli Army Radio
reported that as a result of the US government’s demands, PM Ehud Olmert
declared a halt to new construction work in West Bank settlements. But
he has not totally called off plans to build hundreds of homes in Har
responded to the Army Radio report by saying that no decision had been
made regarding a construction freeze and that Israel is obligated to act
in accordance with the Road Map. The Road Map stipulates, in addition
to a halt to Israeli settlement activity, the PA must “declare an
unequivocal end to violence and terrorism and undertake visible efforts
on the ground to arrest, disrupt, and restrain individuals and groups
conducting and planning violent attacks on Israelis anywhere.” This is
interpreted to mean that while Palestinian violence continued, Israel is
not obliged to freeze construction.
Even though terrorism
has continued nearly unabated - including not only by Hamas and
Islamic Jihad but also by the Abbas-led Fatah - Israel now,
apparently, has agreed to stop all Jewish construction in Judea and
Samaria, as well as in many of the outlying neighbourhoods of its
The Army Radio report
noted that Olmert and Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni had tried to explain
at last month’s Annapolis conference that Har Homa should not be
included in the construction ban, as it is an integral part of
Jerusalem. However, the Americans and the PA did not accept this
Israel maintains the
right to build within the existing limits of major West Bank settlements
to account for natural growth. And during his meeting with Bush, Olmert
reiterated pledges not to build any new settlements or expand existing
settlements beyond their current borders.
Olmert’s new orders
to halt construction in east Jerusalem has made him “politically
uncomfortable,” as he fears the rightward-leaning Shas will
follow the lead of the Yisrael Beiteinu party and quit the
government. Shas and Yisrael Beiteinu leaders have said
that their demand for full Israeli sovereignty over Jerusalem is
TO THE JEWISH PEOPLE”
Likud leader Binyamin
Netanyahu told President Bush that “Jerusalem belongs to the Jewish
people and will remain undivided under Jewish sovereignty forever.”
earlier in the week, “It would be right if the president would take the
time to listen to someone who represents more than half the people in
Israel, who oppose the Annapolis process.”
CALL FOR CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE
MK Aryeh Eldad of the
National Union Party called for civil disobedience, following PM
Olmert’s declaration that no construction be carried out in eastern
Jerusalem, Judea or Samaria without his approval. He said citizens
should build freely throughout the Land of Israel.
“Two days ago,” Eldad
told the audience, “Olmert sent a letter to the Ministers of Defence,
Housing and Agriculture determining that no one can build a house,
expand a community or apartment, or even plan expansions [in eastern
Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria] without his permission! Prime Minister
Olmert is doing something that wasn’t even done in the time of the
British Mandate! Olmert wants a family with eight kids living in an
apartment to ask him permission to expand a balcony – and he will say
“My precious Jews,”
Eldad said, “thanks to Olmert we now have an opportunity to practice
civil disobedience – we WILL build – we will build everywhere – rooms,
apartments, houses, synagogues, Yeshivas, and schools! We will build
thinks he’ll apprehend several criminals? 250,000 Jews will declare: We
are criminals – our crime is the building of the land of Israel! We’ll
see what he’ll do with 250,000 criminals!”
REJECTS BUSH’S DEMAND ON
CONSTRUCTION IN JERUSALEM
At the end of their
meetings, Ehud Olmert told Mr Bush that Israel will not halt building
plans in east Jerusalem’s Jewish neighborhoods and in the settlement
blocs, despite American objections.
Israel is seeking to
hold onto its constructions in Jerusalem and the settlement blocs after
a permanent agreement is reached with the Palestinians.
“Not everyone likes
what we have to say about this, but we made it clear that Jerusalem’s
status is different than that of the settlements,” said Olmert.
Olmert clarified that
Israel has never tried to hide what was taking place in the area. “We
shall not hide them; we shall discuss them. I reiterate that nothing has
happened there that is not known. We clarified what we did, what we can
do and what we plan to do. We will discuss all these issues as part of
Olmert reiterated Israel’s commitment to the Road Map. His earlier
commitment included halting the construction of new settlements or the
expansion of existing ones,
Palestinians implemented their commitment to fight terror.
But now Olmert and
Abbas have agreed, it is reported, to skip the first step of the Road
Map, and move ahead to a discussion of final status issues. An official
“We will discuss the
Palestinian demands as the negotiations continue. In the meantime, the
prime minister has instructed his ministers to receive his approval for
any actions in the settlements.”
Bush chose not to
confront his host on the construction issue, but focused on “outposts,
and criticized the Olmert government’s policy, saying that “four years
have passed since we discussed this. The agreement must include the
evacuation of the illegal
They must be evacuated.”
DEMOGRAPHIC (population) REALITY
CANNOT BE IGNORED
Ehud Olmert, in an
interview with the Jerusalem Post in early January, said that
while the road map called for a freeze to settlement activity, including
natural growth, “if everything began and ended with that, then that’s
what we have to do according to our commitment. But as you know well,
America sponsored the road map, and President Bush, on April 14, 2004,
sent a letter that said one can’t ignore the demographic (population)
reality unfolding in the territories and that this will certainly need
to be given expression in the agreements between us and the
Palestinians. And this, I would say, renders flexible to a degree, the
significance of what is written in the road map.”
ALLOW 50,000 ARAB ‘REFUGEES’
JAN 10, 08. U.S.
President George Bush summed up his three-day visit to Israel by saying
that a new Palestinian state, together with financial compensation,
would be the solution to the refugee problem. (The implication was that
the refugees need not enter Israel.)
“There must be an end
to Israel’s occupation that began in 1967,” Bush said. “Palestine must
serve as a national home for the Palestinians, and Israel - for the
But Olmert has gone
further than Bush. Channel Ten reported that Olmert and Abbas have
agreed that in the final-status agreement, Israel would withdraw from
92% of Judea and Samaria, including all the non-Jewish neighborhoods in
eastern Jerusalem. It was also agreed that 50,000 “refugees from 1948”
would be allowed to enter and live in the State of Israel.
Lebanon’s PM Fouad
Seniora does not accept Bush’s position on the refugees. Seniora said
that money alone is not enough, and that his country will continue to
grant citizenship to the 400,000 “Palestinian refugees” living within
its borders. The number of Arabs who left Israel in 1948 has been
estimated to be roughly a half-million, but several million now claim
the ‘right to return.’
Hamas, too, refuses
to accept any solution other than the “return” to Israel of the millions
of Arabs who claim that they themselves, or their ancestors, were forced
to leave Israel in 1948. The Hamas PM in Gaza, Ismail Haniyeh, said that
Bush will soon leave the political arena, while the Hamas demands will
remain forever: “A Palestinian state in the pre-1967 borders with
Jerusalem as its capital, the destruction of all the settlements, the
release of all the Palestinian prisoners, the ‘right of return’ of all
Palestinian refugees, and continued adherence to the strategy of not
giving up on even one inch of all Palestine.” -
BUSH’S VISIT “MOSTLY A WASH”
Mideast analyst at
the Council on Foreign Relations, Steven Cook, called the President’s
trip “mostly a wash,” and predicted that
momentum in the talks will falter after Bush goes home.
“Neither Olmert nor Abbas want to embarrass the president while he is
in the region, thus the positive talks,” he said.
But neither Israel
nor its Arab neighbors assured Bush that they will do what the US asks
on issues ranging from democratic reform and unauthorized Israeli
housing expansion to high gas prices.
Although pleased that
Bush has given personal attention to peace efforts between Israel and
the Palestinians, Arab leaders are skeptical that either side is ready
or willing to make concessions.
And Bush didn’t seem
to win any converts among Arab states that dislike or resent Iran’s
growing influence but fear warfare more. Some Gulf states and Saudi
Arabia have recently hosted Iran’s hardline President Ahmadinejad, and
are trading with the oil giant (Iran) — hardly the diplomatic and
economic isolation that Bush urged.
“To the extent that
containing Iran was the centerpiece of his trip, not much seems to have
been accomplished,” said James Dobbins, a Rand Corp. international
security analyst. “The president’s major address on that subject
undoubtedly played better with American and Israeli listeners than his
ostensible audience in the Arab Gulf.”
JAN 14, 08. Israel
and the PA have begun negotiations over the “core issues” of their
conflict. The chief negotiators, Israeli FM Tzipi Livni and former
Palestinian PM Ahmed Qurei, launched the talks in a Jerusalem hotel.
PM Olmert and
President Abbas have authorised the start of the final-status talks. But
the leaders remain at odds over the scope of a deal.
said Olmert was seeking a deal that would outline a “framework” for a
future Palestinian state with implementation delayed until the
Palestinians can ensure Israel’s security. Abbas wants a final peace
treaty enabling him to declare a state by the end of the year.
The talks are
revolving around six issues: “Jerusalem, the settlements, the
Palestinian refugees, borders, security and water sources.” Mahmoud
Abbas said: “If we reach agreement on these issues, you could say we
have an agreement.”
PM Olmert said last
week that the Israeli negotiation team would deal with all of the “core
issues” and will not hesitate to make decisions that involve “painful
Those “core issues”
that have already defeated scores of negotiators and mediators over the
past decades are: the status of Jerusalem, the future borders of a
Palestinian state and Israel, the presence of Jewish communities on the
West Bank, the status of 1948 Palestinian refugees, Israeli security in
the face of Palestinian terror and the shared scanty water sources.
On mere marginal
questions, 22 meetings between Olmert and Abbas failed to achieve a
single point of accord before, during and after the Annapolis
Olmert said President
Bush had assured him during his visit that the Palestinians would need
to meet their security obligations under the road map before any peace
deal was implemented.
But it is unclear how
Olmert and Abbas can reach a deal. Since Hamas Islamists seized control
of the Gaza Strip last June, Abbas has wielded little power beyond the
West Bank – and even the West Bank is not fully under his control.
And PM Olmert also
has been weakened by the 2006 Lebanon war, and he could face new calls
to resign when a commission of inquiry gives its final report on the
conflict at the end of January.
LEAVES ISRAEL COALITION
JAN 16, 08. The
Yisrael Beitenu party has pulled out of the Kadima coalition
government in protest at the starting of peace talks on core issues with
Lieberman who was the Strategic Affairs Minister and Deputy Prime
Minister in the coalition, said the land-for-peace talks would lead to
Israel’s destruction. “Negotiations on the basis of land for peace are a
critical mistake ... and will destroy us.”
Beitenu’s departure, the Kadima coalition retains a parliamentary
majority by a margin of seven. It has 67 seats out of 120.
government is still vulnerable as the religious party Shas, which
has 12 seats, has also threatened to leave the coalition over the issue
of peace talks. It is only a matter of time. New elections may be
INTERNATIONAL FORCE FOR WEST BANK
According to a report
in The Jerusalem Post,
(Jan. 8, 08),
the US is preparing a plan to station third party troops in the West
Bank to secure the area after an Israeli withdrawal and before the
Palestinian Authority can take over full security control.
US Special Envoy for
Middle East Security, James Jones, a former Marine Corps general, and
NATO’s top military commander from 2003 to 2005, has been assigned the
task of preparing a plan on this issue within six moths.
A number of options
are being considered, including the involvement of NATO troops, or
Jordanian and Egyptian forces.
PLANNED MECHANISM TO MONITOR
At the Annapolis
summit, George Bush read out an understanding that both sides agreed to
“form an American, Palestinian and Israeli mechanism, led by the US, to
follow up on the implementation of the road map.” It said, “The United
States will monitor and judge the fulfillment of the commitment of both
sides of the road map.”
When told by the
Al-Arabiya interviewer that the settlements were the main obstacle
to peace, Mr Bush replied, “No question the settlement activity is a
problem. But there’s a mechanism to deal with that, and that is the
road map commission
which we head, to deal with these road map issues.”
The details of this
commission have not been finalized, but the plan will include US teams
to monitor the compliance, and violations of treaty obligations.
“US-ISRAEL ALIANCE WILL HELP TO GUARANTEE SECURITY”
Mr Bush indicated his
willingness to address Israel’s concerns with the Palestinians. Upon
arrival at the airport, he lent support to Israel on one of the core
issues in the conflict. “The alliance between our two nations helps
guarantee Israel’s security as a Jewish state,” he said.
Bush has referred to
state in the past but the reference – while here in the region - had
special significance. Palestinians oppose the term, saying it rules out
the right of Palestinian refugees to return to lost properties in
THE GAZA STRIP
- THE SPANNER IN THE WORKS
The small Philistine
territory of Gaza has always been a pain in the side for Israel. When
God brought Israel out of Egypt, He told them to avoid the land of the
Philistines. Joshua did not attack them; and Judges 3:1-4 says God left
the Philistines there as a means of testing Israel. And they were
certainly a vexation for ancient Israel - for Samson, Saul, David,
Jehoram, Uzziah, and Hezekiah.
And although the
people of Gaza today are not really descendants of the Philistines –
they are a hybrid people – they have proved to be a thorn in the flesh
for modern Egypt and Lebanon, as well as for Israel.
Under the Egyptian
occupation (before 1967), Gaza was careless and brutal. Gazians were
stateless and forbidden to leave the strip.
When the Jews first
came to the Gaza Strip, it consisted of sand dunes that even the Arabs
who lived in the crowded Gaza City slums didn’t want. The territory
barely grew anything and was generally uninhabitable.
pioneering Jews grappled with the sand, and after years of
experimentation, the Land came to life. With greenhouses the size of
football fields, Gaza grew organic vegetables in the sand without
pesticides, and supplied Israel, Europe and America with bug-free
salads, flowers, tropical fruit and vegetables.
farmers built comfortable houses for their families as well as
factories, schools, and synagogues. And many Arabs in Gaza received
regular employment while also learning high tech farming.
As the Land turned
green from produce and profits, Arab leaders who had never made anything
productive, began to cry that the Jews had stolen their fertile Land,
and then began to attack them.
Finally Ariel Sharon
came to the conclusion that Israel must rid itself of the Gazan
headache. Israel pulled out some 10,000 settlers and its army in August
2005. Sharon abandoned the Gaza, evidently with the expectation that the
Strip would become a fledgling Palestinian state that would be expanded
later by the inclusion of the West Bank, and that, with the help of Arab
nations, would become a viable and peaceful state.
But the Palestinians
would not declare independence on one small piece of “Palestinian
territory.” Gaza remained the spanner in the works for both Israel, and
the Fatah Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas.
loyalists and police offices in Gaza were attacked and ousted by Hamas
last year, Abbas still believes there can’t be a solution without Hamas.
And Ehud Olmert also
stressed: “There will be no peace until Palestinian terror is stopped
everywhere. Gaza must be part of the package. Without Gaza, it will be
hard to reach any understanding with the Palestinians.”
George Bush is very
unpopular among Palestinians in Gaza; he is viewed as being
Mr Bush told
reporters that the Hamas terrorist organization has complicated matters
for everyone. “There is a competing vision taking place in Gaza,” he
said. “Hamas … has delivered nothing but misery.”
He added that he
didn’t know whether issues with Hamas and Gaza could be resolved by the
end of 2008. “Gaza’s a tough situation; I don’t know whether you can
solve it in a year or not.”
What is clear, Mr
Bush said, is the
the PA of not resolving the Gaza problem
and the choice that must be made. “Do you want those who have created
chaos to run your country?” he asked pointedly. “Or do you want those of
us who negotiated a settlement with the Israelis that will lead to
Abbas says frankly
that he is powerless to do anything to stop the violence and rockets
coming from Gaza.
WANTS TO DISSOLVE
PALESTINIAN LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL,
AND FORM SEPARATE WEST BANK PARLIAMENT
The Palestinians may
soon have two separate parliaments - one in the West Bank controlled by
Fatah and the second belonging to Hamas in the Gaza Strip.
The PLO (Palestinian
Liberation Organisation) Central Council, which met in Ramallah on 13th
Jan, is expected to vote to dissolve the current PLC (Palestinian
Legislative Council) which is dominated by Hamas, but which has been
paralyzed since Hamas took full control of the Gaza Strip in June.
The 116-member PLO
Central Council would serve as a temporary parliament to fill the vacuum
after the PLC was dissolved, a senior PA official said.
The council is also
scheduled to call for early parliamentary elections in the Palestinian
territories. However, it’s unclear how elections would take place in
Gaza which is entirely controlled by Hamas.
President Abbas has
told the council members he “fully supports” early parliamentary
The move is set to
deepen divisions among the Palestinians and further consolidate the
split between the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. It is also likely to
hamper efforts by some Arab countries to patch up the differences
between Fatah and Hamas.
warned the PLO council against dissolving the Legislative Council. In
the last parliamentary elections in January 2006, Hamas won 74 of the
PLC’s 132 seats.
Ahmed Bahr, acting
PLC speaker and a Hamas legislator, said even Abbas did not have the
power to disband the parliament. “According to article 113 of the
Palestinian Basic Law, no one has the power to dissolve the parliament,”
he said. “The PLC can’t even be dissolved under a state of emergency.”
Ayman Taha, another
Hamas figure, accused Abbas of using PLO institutions to reverse the
results of the last parliamentary elections. “The PLO Central Council
was never elected by the Palestinians,” he said. “Most of its members
were appointed either by Yasser Arafat or by Hamas. How can a body that
was never elected dissolve a democratically elected parliament?”
The Jerusalem Post / Jan. 14, 08
SYRIA & IRAN
PLAN TO OVERTHROW ABBAS
AND ESTABLISH A
JAN 14, 08. Syria and
Iran have stepped up their efforts to overthrow President Abbas and the
PA officials in
Ramallah accuse the Syrians and Iranians of “encouraging” Hamas and
other radical Palestinian groups to establish a new organization that
would replace the PLO.
The officials also
accused Iran and Syria of providing Hamas and its allies in the Gaza
Strip with millions of dollars as well as weapons. “They want to help
Hamas extend its control to the West Bank.”
In the context of
their efforts to overthrow the Abbas regime, Damascus and Teheran have
encouraged Hamas and ten other radical groups to meet in the Syrian
capital on January 23 to discuss forming a new
PLO, and to increase their terror attacks on Israel. The decision to
hold the conference was apparently taken in response to President Bush’s
visit to the region.
and Islamic Jihad
have never been part of the PLO, but in recent years they have
challenged the PLO’s claim to be the “sole and legitimate”
representative of all Palestinians. Hamas is hoping to name its leader,
Khaled Mashaal, as chairman of the new PLO.
THE EUROPEAN UNION IN WAITING
JAN 9, 08. according
to the EU’s current president, Slovenia, The European Union is ready to
get involved again in the Mideast peace process if the current US-led
drive fails to make progress.
After meeting the
Palestinian information minister, Riyadh al-Maliki, Slovenian Foreign
Minister Dimitrij Rupel said the EU was ready to resume a key role if
the Israeli-Palestinian peace talks grind to a halt.
The Quartet, (the EU,
Russia, the US and UN), has “stepped back to see what can be achieved
through the agreement reached in Annapolis,” Rupel told a news
conference. “But if there is no progress, the EU will involve itself in
the process again, as far as it can.”
The prophecies of
Daniel indicate that the Ruler of the Revived Roman Empire who arises
out of Europe, will be the one to “confirm” a peace agreement in the
Middle East. And he (the Antichrist) - “the prince of the people that
destroyed Jerusalem” in 70 AD, “will divide the land for a price.”
(Daniel 9:26 & 11:39)
“He will attack the
strongest fortresses with the help of a foreign god which he
shall acknowledge. He will increase in glory, and will cause them to
rule over many, and
the land for a price.”
The LORD has a
controversy with the nations that divide His land and disperse His
people. Yahweh says:
“I will gather all
the nations, and bring them down to the valley of Yehoshafat. There I
will enter into judgment against them on behalf of My people and My
inheritance, Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations. And
they have divided up My land.”
that all the nations of the world will be gathered together against the
city of Jerusalem for battle - in the Great Tribulation.
“Look! I am going to
make Jerusalem a cup that causes reeling to all the people around. Judah
will be besieged as well as Jerusalem. And on that day, when all the
nations of the earth are gathered against her, I will make Jerusalem a
very heavy rock for all the nations. All who try to move it will be
THE CATALYST FOR
WORLD WAR 3
The besieging of
Judah and Jerusalem, I believe, will be the catalyst for the next world
war, which will be early in the 7-year Tribulation.
The result of that
war will be the destruction of a quarter of the world’s population,
leading to the Prince of Rome occupying Israel and establishing
Jerusalem as the headquarters of a dictatorial world government – in the
second half of the seven years.
The prophet Jeremiah
foretold the controversy and the great whirlwind that would be stirred
up against the nations:
“And you, Jeremiah,
you shall prophesy against them all these words, and say to them: . . .
“‘Tumult has come to
the ends of the earth, for
a controversy with the nations.
He has entered into judgment with all flesh. As for the wicked, He has
given them to the sword.’
“Thus says YHWH of
Hosts: ‘Look! Evil is going forth from nation to nation, and a great
whirlwind is being stirred up from the ends of the earth. And those
slain by YHWH in that day will be from one end of the earth even to the
other end of the earth. They will not be mourned, gathered up, or
buried; for they are like dung lying on the ground’.”
THE WORLD WAR
& THE GREAT TRIBULATION?
At the end of the 7
years, Y’shua the Messiah will return to establish righteousness and the
worldwide Kingdom of God with Jerusalem, the city which He has chosen
and where He has placed His Name, as the capital.
“… that My servant
David may have a lamp always before Me in Jerusalem, the city I have
chosen for Myself, and where I have put My Name.”
Kings 11:36. See also 2 Chronicles 6:6 and Zechariah 3:2)
That Kingdom will
last for 1000 years on earth, and then forever in the new heaven and
“... the God of the
heavens will set up a kingdom that will never be destroyed - a kingdom
that will not be left to another people. It will crush all these
kingdoms and bring them to an end, but it will itself endure for
My reader, the time
for these events to take place is drawing near. Let us make sure that
all our families and friends are saved (born again), and let us redeem
the time for the time is near.”
1:3. Rom 13:11-12)
PAKISTAN IN TURMOIL
The assassination of
Benazir Bhutto in Rawalpindi, N Pakistan, on Dec 27, was another
“earthquake” for the strife-torn nation; and it was a shocking portent
of perilous times ahead, both for Pakistan and the region. It dashed
the hopes of many, including those of the US administration.
US plans are in
shreds! President Bush wanted the two secular forces of Musharraf and
Bhutto to unite against the Islamists. But Pakistan is now the crucial
home turf of the Taliban and al-Qaida, and it has become the seventh
front, after Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, Lebanon, Syria, and Gaza, in the
war on terror!
As in Lebanon,
Islamic extremists in Pakistan are bent on eliminating political leaders
that are opposed to their evil goals. In both countries their goal is to
topple the current governments; and, in Pakistan’s case, to gain contain
control of the nation’s nuclear weapons.
bombings and bloodshed throughout the country, the future is not a
joyful prospect for President Pervez Musharraf, or for the opposition
political leaders who may be voted into office in the election that has
been rescheduled for February 18.
parties have threatened to impeach President Musharraf if they come to
power. But he has responded by saying he would avoid impeachment. “If
that happens, let assure that I’d be leaving office before they would do
“AL-QAIDA TARGETS PAKISTAN NUKES”
This item was
published before the assassination of Benazir Bhutto.
DEC 19, 07. Osama bin
Laden’s quest for a nuclear weapons arsenal now focuses on al-Qaida’s
attempts at destabilizing Pakistan, plunging the nation into civil war,
seizing power in conjunction with other radical jihadists and grabbing
control of the world’s first Islamic bombs, according to a report in a
US military academy anti-terrorism journal.
Writing in the
Combating Terrorism Center’s Sentinel, Bruce Riedel, a former
senior US official now with the Brookings Institution, says Pakistan
represents the “real front line in the war against al-Qaida.”
The most frightening
part of advances by Islamists confronting the government of Pervez
Musharraf is the determination of al-Qaida to obtain nuclear weapons.
Al-Qaida has been
pursuing nuclear weapons for more than a decade, according to former CIA
Director George Tenet.
Pakistan is a hotbed
for Islamic radicals, and the Musharraf government is either unwilling
or unable to quell the growing number of terrorists within their border
on its own.
Many are calling for
Musharraf to bring in NATO troops to help stabilize the area, as his own
army and police force has been infiltrated by Muslim extremists.
There have already
been several attempts on the life of Musharraf. If an assassination
attempt succeeded, and terrorists wrested control of the country and
its nuclear arms, the dangers to Israel, India, and the Western world
would be greatly increased.
MUSHARRAF WARNS U.S. TO
JAN 11, 08. Despite
the growing threat from Islamic extremists, President Musharraf said US
troops are not welcome to join the fight against al-Qaida on Pakistani
warned that Pakistan
would resist any unilateral military action by the US against militants
sheltering in its lawless, tribal regions close to the Afghan border.
“I challenge anybody
coming into our mountains,” he said. “They would regret that day.”
IRAN’S NUCLEAR PROGRAM
FUELS IRANIAN NUCLEAR PLANT
AND RUSSIA ON COLLISION COURSE
By Stan Goodenough /Jerusalem
DEC 18, 07. When, in
an effort to stop Iran from reaching the status of nuclear military
power, Israel attacks the sites housing that country’s nuclear program,
it could find itself on a collision course with Russia. This possibility
emerged Monday amid reports that Russia had delivered what an unnamed
Iranian official called a “first batch” of 82 tons of nuclear fuel to
the Iranian plant at Bushehr.
According to the
Israeli daily Ha’aretz, Russia announced its intention to supply
the fuel just days after the publication of a US National Intelligence
Estimate (NIE) which concluded that Iran had stopped trying to build a
nuclear bomb four years ago.
Hailed as a victory
by Iranian President Ahmadinejad, the NIE report led to an immediate
evaporation of the international pressure on Iran to end its quest for
nuclear arms, leaving Israel standing alone against the threat.
In a statement that
might return to haunt him, President
said he supported Russia’s supplying of the nuclear fuel because it
removed any reason the Iranians might have for continuing to enrich its
But Israeli officials
are deeply concerned.
Minister Avigdor Lieberman told the Knesset that Iran needed only a few
months to make the transition “from a civilian nuclear energy track to a
military one.” And Israel’s Internal Security Minister, Avi Dichter,
had warned that the NIE report could pave the way for “another Yom
quoted an unnamed senior political-defence source as saying that “Iran
will do anything to continue (developing nuclear technology) while
attempting to confound the Western World.”
Vladimir Putin has strategically aligned his country with Iran,
resisting US requests to join an international embargo against the
Islamic Republic, and instead, entering into a historic covenantal
relationship with it.
relationship will only complicate any plans Israel has to strike Iran’s
When Israel took out
the French-sponsored Iraqi nuclear reactor called Osirak in 1981, it
triggered a crisis with President Francois Mitterrand, who immediately
vowed to rebuild the plant. Although he never kept his word, France did
supply Iraq with five highly sophisticated fighter bombers armed with
Israel’s relations with France were seldom more than cordial. By
contrast, its often tense relations with Soviet Russia have brought the
Middle East to the brink of nuclear war on at least one occasion.
While the USSR is no
more, analysts believe Putin seeks to re-establish the level of
influence in the Middle East once enjoyed by the Soviet Empire.
Iran received a
of nuclear fuel from Russia in January.
BUSH ON IRAN &
THE INTELLIGENCE REPORT
Bush found himself
challenged by his Israeli allies on the recent US intelligence report
that said Iran halted its nuclear weapons program in 2003. Tehran’s
nuclear ambitions are a chief fear in Israel, and the US report led many
Israelis and Arabs who are concerned about rising Iranian influence, to
doubt the US commitment to rein in Tehran. The report also undercut US
efforts to build support for sanctions against Iran.
“Iran is a threat to
world peace,” Opposition Likud leader Binyamin Netanyahu told President
Bush during a meeting between the two at the King David Hotel.
For years Netanyahu
has pushed for both Israel and the US to make a greater effort to
prevent a nuclear Iran. Last year, he persuaded a number of American
governors and legislatures to divest state pension funds from the
Mr Bush and Olmert
also discussed Iran’s nuclear weapons ambitions and the incident on 6th
January when Iranian boats harassed and provoked three American Navy
ships in the strategic Strait of Hormuz. US officials said Iran
threatened to explode the vessels, but the incident ended peacefully.
The president said
“all options are on the table to secure our assets.” He said serious
consequences would follow another Iranian provocation.
commented: “A year ago, such a provocation would have been unthinkable
because it would have met with a punishing response. Many will have
concluded that power is ebbing away from Bush by the day as the US
focuses on choosing its next leader.
“Certainly, he would
do well to remember the experience of his predecessor, Bill Clinton.
Clinton tried and failed to clinch a peace deal in the dying days of his
administration. Instead of a historic agreement at Camp David, the
region was left with another conflict that cost thousands of lives.”
IRANIAN ATTACK ON ISRAEL
COULD LEAD TO
WORLD WAR 3
reported that President Bush said on January 5, an Iranian attack on
Israel could lead to World War 3. Bush also said that the US considers
Israel a strong ally, and if it is attacked by Iran, it would not let
Israel face the Iranian threat alone.
The President said,
“If I were an Israeli I would take the words of the Iranian President
Ahmadinejad (that Israel should be wiped off the map) seriously.
“‘Whether there is an
imminent attack coming, I don’t think so,’” Bush told the news channel.
“The recent US intelligence report that claimed Iran suspended its
nuclear program in 2003, does not mean that Iran is no longer considered
a danger, as it could restart the program any time,” he added.
Bushehr Plant to be operational
The Iranian nuclear
plant in Bushehr will be operational by March 21, 2008, and could begin
supplying electricity to Iran’s power grid by summertime, according to
Iranian Energy Minister Parviz Fattah. The plant will deliver 500
megawatts of electricity to the power grid by summer and 1,000 megawatts
by March 2009.
Washington and Moscow
have recently asserted that providing Iran with Russian nuclear fuel
would enable the Islamic republic to suspend its controversial uranium
enrichment program, but Iran stated that it planned to continue
enriching uranium, which is required for other nuclear facilities.
FIRM ON BOOSTING TIES WITH
Despite the US
pressure, Turkey is firm on bolstering relationship with Iran since the
neighbours have not fought since 17th century, PressTV reported.
“Turkey and Iran have
neither fought nor changed their border since the 1639 Treaty of Qasr-e
Shirin,” Turkey’s President Abdullah Gul said to remind critics that
Ankara-Tehran relations is older than US history.
Ankara is under
mounting US pressure to refrain from investing billions in Iranian
In November, Iran and
Turkey signed an energy deal including building power plants and
improving electricity transport infrastructure. The Turkish PM Recep
Tayyip Erdogan said in Sept that his Country would continue
collaboration with Iran in the oil and gas sectors. “Iran is an
important trade partner for Turkey and Turkey cannot ignore this fact.”
RUSSIAN NAVAL PRESENCE
IN E. MEDITERRANEAN
DEC 23, 07. Israeli
military sources say Syria has agreed to an expanded Russian Navy
presence, particularly at the ports of Latakia and Tartous. And the
Israeli military expects Russian submarines to conduct reconnaissance
operations near the Israeli coast.
“The Russians could
conduct naval operations for Syria and compensate for Syria’s
technological gap,” a military source said.
Russia has announced
that the navy would restore its presence in the eastern Mediterranean.
Moscow said the operations would take place in 2008.
The Israel Navy has
completed a submarine course meant to enhance skills to detect enemy
submarines. The navy has three German-origin Dolphin-class
diesel-electric submarines and plans to acquire another two such
platforms by 2011. - www.geostrategy-direct.com
* If our greatest
need had been information, God would have sent us an
* If our greatest
need had been technology, God would have sent us a
* If our greatest
need had been money, God would have sent us an
* If our greatest
need had been pleasure, God would have sent us an
* But our greatest
need was forgiveness, so God sent us …
“Look at my Servant,
whom I have chosen. My Beloved in whom I delight. I will put My Spirit
upon Him, and He will proclaim justice to the nations ... and in His
Name the nations will put their hope – their confident expectation.”
(Matthew 12:18 , 21)
“You shall call His
name Y’shua (which means, Yahweh is salvation), for He will save
His people from their sins.”
“Y’shua of Nazareth -
He is the One whom they killed by hanging on a tree - a cross.
But God raised Him up on the third day - (a living Saviour) …
This is the One who has been appointed by God as Judge of the living and
the dead. Of Him all the prophets bear witness that through
every one who believes in Him has received forgiveness of sins.”
“Believe in the
Heavenly Master, Y’shua the Messiah, and you will be saved.”
CALL UPON THE NAME OF
Y’SHUA thE Heavenly Master
“THE GOOD NEWS
Messiah died for our sins, and
that He was buried, and that
He was raised
on the third day according to the
(1 Cor 15:1-4).
“God has made this Y’shua whom you
crucified, both Master and Messiah.”
confess with your mouth Y’shua as
Master and Saviour, and
believe in your heart
that God raised Him from the dead,
you will be saved ...
whoever will call upon the Name of Y’shua
the Heavenly Master will be saved.”
(Romans 10:9 -13).
If you have not received Y’shua as your own personal Saviour, I urge you
to believe and
call on Him today.
Tomorrow may be too late!
INFORMATION ON BEING SAVED,
- CLICK HERE
q q q q q q q