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MA#57 POPE QUITS - Feb 2013

Pope Benedict resignS

85-year-old no longer has strength to carry out duties

FEB 11/13. Pope Benedict XVI, in a historic announcement, said he no longer had the mental and physical strength to run the Roman Catholic Church and will step aside as leader of the Roman church on Feb. 28. He would become the first pontiff to resign since the Middle Ages.

The pope told the cardinals that in order to govern " both strength of mind and body are necessary, strength which in the last few months, has deteriorated in me to the extent that I have had to recognize my incapacity to adequately fulfil the ministry entrusted to me."

While the pope had slowed down recently - he started using a cane and a wheeled platform to take him up the long aisle in St Peter's Square - he had given no hint that he was mulling such a dramatic decision.

The Church of Rome has been rocked during Benedict's nearly eight-year conservative papacy by a lot of turmoil, conflicts and scandals.

And while conservatives cheered him for trying to reaffirm the traditional Catholic identity, his critics accused him of turning back the clock on reforms by nearly half a century, and hurting dialogue with Muslims, Jews and other Christians.

Benedict stepped up the Church's opposition to gay marriage, underscored the Church's resistance to a female priesthood and to embryonic stem cell research.

The Pope closed his resignation speech by saying, “With regard         

to myself,  I wish to devotedly serve the Holy Church of God in the future through a life dedicated to prayer.”

The resignation means that cardinals from around the world will begin arriving in Rome in March and after preliminary meetings, they will lock themselves into a secret conclave to choose a new leader for the world's 1.2 billion Roman Catholics. This could happen as early as Palm Sunday, on March 24, and the new pope could then be ready to take over by Rome’s great celebration of “Easter.”

Protestants do not recognise the Pope as the Head of the church, as the Scriptures are quite clear: “Christ is the Head of the Church, He being the Saviour of the Body.” (Ephesians 5:23)

 

        WILL THE NEW POPE BE THE LAST POPE  ?

 

By Steve Elwart – Koinonia House

While there has been a great amount of speculation in modern times about who would be the next pope, many Catholics are watching closely the next conclave for they believe that whoever succeeds Pope Benedict XVI will be "The Last Pope."

 

      THE PROPHECY OF ST. MALACHY

St. Malachy (Maelmhaedhoc Ó Morgair) lived in 12th century Ireland and was the Archbishop of Armagh, now a town of 14,000 in Northern Ireland. Attracted to the monastic life, Malachy established the first Cistercian abbey in Ireland in 1142. He also reformed the Irish Church and aligned it more closely with Rome.

What St. Malachy is more known for is the so-called Prophecy of the Popes, which is attributed to him. The prophecy is a list of 112 short phrases that supposedly describe each of the Roman Catholic popes beginning with Pope Celestine II (elected in 1143) and concluding with the successor of Benedict XVI.

This last pope is described in the prophecy as "Peter the Roman," whose reign as pope will see the destruction of the city of Rome.

This prophecy did not hold much interest among Catholics up until the mid-20th century because it seemed as if it would be a long time before the world would see the election of "The Last Pope."

According to his biographer, St. Bernard of Clairvaux, in his book "Life of Saint Malachy," St. Malachy was known to have the gift of prophecy and even predicted the exact day and hour of his own death. St. Malachy was canonized in 1190 by Pope Clement III.

 

THE SUCCESSION OF RECENT POPES

Until the pontificate of Pius XII (1939-58), the average tenure of recent popes had been approximately 20 years. This changed in 1958 with the election of Angelo Roncalli who took the name John XXIII. Elected when he was 77 years old, John XXIII was considered a "caretaker pope" who would keep the papal throne warm until the College of Cardinals could decide on a longer serving pontiff. He served for four years, but put the Catholic Church on a new course by calling the Second Vatican Council.

 

Giovanni Montini was elected to replace John XXIII on his death and called himself Paul VI. His reign lasted 15 years. Albino Luciani followed and took the name John Paul I, combining the names of his predecessors. John Paul I's reign lasted one month and his death was clouded in controversy.

 

John Paul I was succeeded by Karol Wojtyła, who took the name John Paul II. Fairly young in papal terms when he was elected (58 years old), his was the second-longest pontificate, lasting 26 years, 168 days; only Pope Pius IX (1846-1878), who served 31 years, reigned longer.

Interest in the Prophecy of the Popes increased as John Paul II's health declined and Vatican watchers were shocked when Joseph Ratsinger, a cardinal of advanced age, was unexpectedly elected as Pope Benedict XVI.

 

According to the Malachy Prophecy, whoever succeeded Benedict would be the Last Pope.

(The Catholic Church discounts the Prophecy, saying that they have no connection with Malachy except their erroneous attribution to him.) The prophecies connected with the most recent popes are as follows:

 

     * Pope #263 - John XXIII (1958-1963) - Pastor et Nauta (pastor and marine). Prior to his election he was patriarch of Venice, a marine city, home of the gondolas.

 

     * Pope #264 - Paul VI (1963-1978) - Flos florum (flower of flowers). His papal coat of arms displayed three lilies.

 

     * Pope #265 - John Paul I (1978) - De medietate Lunae (from the midst of the moon). Albino Luciani was born in Canale d'Ogardo, diocese of Belluno, (beautiful moon). Elected pope on August 26, his reign lasted about a month, from half-moon to half-moon.

 

     * Pope #266 - John Paul II (1978-2005) - De labore Solis (of the eclipse of the sun). Karol Wojtyla was born on May 18, 1920 during a solar eclipse.  There was also a solar eclipse on April 8, 2005, the day of his funeral.

 

     * Pope #267 - Benedict XVI - Gloria olivae (The glory of the olives). It was originally thought that this pope would be from the Order of St. Benedict (the Benedictines were known also as the Olivetans.) Traditionally, the olive branch has been associated with peace, but in both the Old and New Testaments it also has been ascribed as an emblem for the Jews. Putting the two together, some commentators believed that the reign of this pope would be a peaceful one during which, according to the Catholic Church, the prophesied conversion of the Jews will take place. People who believe in the prophecy believe that the current pope, by taking the name Benedict, fulfilled the prophecy.

 

     * Pope #268 - The Last Pope - In persecutione extrema S.R.E. sedebit Petrus Romanus, qui pascet oues in multis tribulationibus: quibus transactis ciuitas septicollis diruetur, & Iudex tremêdus iudicabit populum suum. Finis.

 

("In the final persecution of the Holy Roman Church there will reign Peter the Roman, who will feed his flock amid many tribulations, after which the seven-hilled city will be destroyed and the dreadful Judge will judge the people. The End.")

 

Proponents of the prophecy say that it is interesting that at least one pope had a similar mystical vision to the "Last Pope" part of the prophecy. During a papal audience in 1909, Pope Pius X claimed he had a vision of the pope leaving Rome, and in leaving the Vatican, he will have to "walk over the dead bodies of his priests."

 

While many may hold the Prophecy of Malachy to be true, there is a far more authoritative source to tell us what is coming in the end times.                                                                                                                     -  www.khouse.org/articles/2012/1046/

 

 

 

                                                                          

THE DESTRUCTION OF ROME AND MYSTERY BABYLON

 While the prophecy of the Irish St Malachy is not a Biblical prophecy, and it remains to be seen whether his vision of the 112th - the last pope - becomes a reality, the reference to the seven-hilled city being destroyed and the dreadful Judge judging the people, alludes to the Biblical prophecy of the destruction of Rome – a seven-hilled city.  Let’s look at this prophecy once more:

REVELATION 17:1

1-2. “And one of the seven messengers who had the seven bowls of wrath came and said to me, ‘Come, I shall show you the judgment of the great harlot who is sitting upon many waters, with whom the kings of the earth committed fornication; indeed those living who dwell on the earth were made drunk with the wine of her immorality.’

3-5. Then he carried me away in the Spirit into a wilderness. There I saw a woman sitting on a scarlet beast that was full of blasphemous names and had seven heads and ten horns. And the woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet, and glittered with gold, precious stones and pearls; and in her hand she had a golden cup full of abominable, repulsive things and the filth of her immorality; and on her forehead there was inscribed a name with a mysterious meaning,

 

 

BABYLON THE GREAT,

THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND OF THE

ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.

6-7.  I saw that the woman was drunk with the blood of the set-apart people of God, and with the blood of the witnesses of Y'shua - those who had died as martyrs because of their testimony to Y'shua. And when I saw her, I was utterly astounded and wondered deeply. And the messenger said to me, "Why do you wonder? I will tell you the meaning of the mystery of the woman and of the beast that carries her, which has the seven heads and the ten horns.”

 

THE INTERPRETATION OF THE WOMAN AND THE BEAST

 

The Great Harlot is a worldwide religious system, which is also described as a city on seven hills. This false system began in the time of Nimrod (the son of Cush, son of Ham, son of Noah), and his notorious wife, Semiramis, at the tower of Babel.  Nimrod was a mighty man who built a kingdom, beginning at Babel, and expanding it later, as Assyria. He also began to build a tower—a skyscraper “whose top will reach into heaven.”  (Gen 11.4)

 

The Tower of Babel, was an attempt to keep all nations together under one control. It was an attempt also to exercise occult power over all the descend­ants of Noah, and to compel them to adopt the new Babylonian religion. Nimrod, in fact, was Satan's man to corrupt the truth that had come down to, and through, Noah.

 

Nimrod's wife, Semiramis, was the high priestess of this religion, and she utilized astrology and occultism to govern the system. The new “religion” plunged deeply into evil and practiced the sacrificing of babies to “the gods.”  It is believed that Shem; a son of Noah, became so outraged at these practices, that he killed Nimrod, and cut him into pieces as an example to others.

 

Semiramis had a son called Tammuz, who was proclaimed to be 'the promised' seed or Messiah. Tammuz then became worshipped as a god, and Semiramis herself be­came the goddess, Ishtar and was entitled, the Queen of Heaven.  Nimrod also, was worshipped as the Sun god.

 

After the destruction of the tower at Babel, the people were scattered, and they took this counterfeit religion with them over much of the world. Tammuz and Semiramis took different names in different count­ries. In Canaan, Tammuz became Baal, and Semiramis, Ashtoreth. In Greece they took the names of Eros and Aphrodite. In Egypt, the Queen of Heaven was known as Isis, the cow-headed mother goddess, and her child-god, was the hawk-headed "god of light," Horus.

 

The symbol of Horus was an eye in a triangle — it forms the capstone of the pyramid, which also represents the ultimate man or god of illumination - the Antichrist.

 

The eye is actually that of Satan, the counterfeit "god," whom Scripture calls "the god of this world." (2 Cor. 4:4). This symbol was also used in Babylon - it was a woman's eye set in vulture's feathers, and was the symbol of Rheas who was identical to Semiramis. She was called the "goddess of fortifications," which is similar to the expression in Daniel 11:39 - the "god of fortresses" - the god from whom the Anti­christ takes his power.

 

The mysteries of Babylon took root in many nations with certain variations in the forms of worship. As we see in Rev. 17:1, the system "sits on many waters." The interpretation of the "many waters" is given in verse 15. 

 

"The waters which you saw where the harlot sits, are peoples and multitudes and nations and tongues." The waters represent a worldwide human base for the system.

 

The paganism of Mystery Babylon became entrenched in Christianity from the time of Emperor Constantine (3rd century); and for the last 1,700 years, it has been centered in Rome.  In Italy, Semiramis and Tammuz became known as Venus and Cupid.

 

In the Revelation prophecy, the harlot is seen with a golden cup in her hand, full of abominable things and the filth of her immorality.  Strangely, the Roman Church actually took this very symbol as one of its own chosen emblems.

 

 

 

“The Woman with a chalice in her hand”

featured on the reverse of a medal from Rome.

In 1825, Pope Leo XII struck a medal, bearing on the one side his own image, and on the other, that of the Church of Rome symbolised as a "Woman," holding in her left hand a cross and in her right a CUP, with the legend around her 'Sedet super universum', "The whole world is her seat." (Hislop)

 

Another of the mysteries of the Babylon religion concerns the fish-god, Dagon, which developed in Philistia. Later this "mystery" became established in Rome where the high priest of the fish-god religion took the title of Pontifex Maximus. This title was also given to Julius Caesar, and then it was held by all the Roman emperors down to Constantine the Great.

  Ancient Maltese pagan coins show a fish-head MITRE that was used to adorn the head of the ‘great’ mediatorial god, Dagon. The Chaldean priests of Babylon also wore a head gear like a fish's head.

And it is the same type of pagan MITRE that the pope— the Pontiff of modern Babylon wears today. The sketch here shows Pope Paul as he delivered his sermon on "Peace" during his historic visit to the United States in 1965.

 

 

After Emperor Constantine was "converted," he proclaim­ed Christianity, the state religion of the Roman Empire. But Christianity, which had been persecuted by the Romans, then became infiltrated with the mysteries of Babylon.

 

(The whole Roman Empire was certainly not converted to Christ)! Corrup­tion came in, and politics and finance were used to create power for heathen priests. The Bishop of Rome became ever more powerful until finally, he was pro­claimed the head of the Church.

 

In the 4th and 5th centuries, the Roman church developed, and Leo the First was given the title Pope. He also took the title Pontifex Maximus, the very title used by the Babylon religion in Philistia. The mitre (cap) that the pope wears, is in the shape of a fish head, with mouth open.

In more recent times, the Roman Catholics have proclaimed Mary the "Mother of the Church," and "the Queen of Heaven and Earth."

 

This, tragically, is a counterfeit Mary; for the precious woman who was chosen to be the mother of Y’shua, the Lord Jesus, is certainly not referred to as the Mother of the Church, or the Queen of Heaven, or the Queen of the Earth, in the Bible.

 

The “Queen of Heaven” mentioned in the Bible is an abomination. (Jeremiah 7:18  & 44:17-26)

The Roman Catholic doctrine of the Queenship of Mary is actually the Babylon religion which has infiltrated into the Roman church. It is a subtle, and a rather successful attempt to install Semiramis, or Isis, as Queen in Christendom, and to divert adoration from the Son of God, to the so-called "Mother of God."

 

With all the apparent openness and moderate changes in the contemporary Catholic church, there is no evident attempt at returning to the truth of the Scriptures and forsaking the idol­atrous veneration of "Mary, the Queen of Heaven."

 

In Revelation 17:6, Mystery Babylon, the infamous harlot is seen as being drunk, but not drunk with alcohol. She is drunk with the blood of the saints and the blood of the witnesses of Jesus. She is the persecutor of those who follow the truth, of those who follow the Lord Jesus Christ in truth.

Babylonianism within the Roman Empire, in particular, ravaged the church and it could be described as drunk with the blood of the saints. She has always persecuted the true believers, down through the centuries; and at the endtime, as we see in this prophecy, she will be fully drunk through persecuting the followers of Y’shua the Messiah.

 

 

WHAT TYPE OF QUEEN IS Ms BAB ?

The woman, Mystery Babylon, is actually the Harlot Queen, the "Mother of Harlots." What a degradation! She is the source of corruption of all that is spiritual. And she leads the nations and their leaders into all types of immorality, and feeds them with her pernicious venom.

 

Mystery Babylon, the false religion, has always been closely associated with political powers over the centuries. And indeed, today we see this religion playing a great part in Europe, preparing to bring the Antichrist to power. The political-economic Euro­pean Confederation is very closely linked with the Vatican empire, which is influential not only in Europe, but in every nation on earth.

 

Mystery Babylon, however, is not merely the Roman Catholic Church. It is a far greater system. It is an "empire" made up of apostate Christianity and most of the world religions. It is a religious alliance embracing the false teachings and mysteries and symbols of Babylon.

 

        THE RIDDLE OF THE SEVEN HEADS   

Revelation 17:8-15

Now the prophecy describes the seven heads of the Beast:

8     “The beast that you saw was, and is no more, and is about to come up out of the abyss (the bottomless pit) and to go to destruction. And those who dwell on the earth will wonder, whose names have not been written in the Book of Life from the foundation of the world, when they see the beast, that he was and is no more, and yet is to come.

9-11. Here is the mind that has wisdom: The seven heads are seven mountains on which the woman sits, and they are seven kings; five have fallen, one is, the other has not yet come; and when he comes, he must remain a little while. And the beast which once was and is no more, is himself also an eighth ruler, and is one of the seven, and he goes to destruction.

12-15. The ten horns you saw are ten kings who have not yet received a kingdom, but who for one hour will receive authority as kings along with the beast. They will have one purpose and will give their power and authority to the beast. These will go to war against the Lamb, and the Lamb will overcome them, for He is Lord of lords and King of kings; and those who are with Him are the called, chosen, and faithful. And he said to me, The waters which you saw, where the harlot sits, are peoples, multitudes, nations and languages.”

 

These verses, at first, seem to be a great riddle. But let’s take it slowly! The seven heads represents two things. Firstly, SEVEN MOUNTAINS which are the saddle of the system, on the political Beast. And secondly — they are SEVEN KINGS.

 

We believe the seven mountains are the mountains of Rome, the political city which has supported the religious "city" - Mystery Babylon - that has ruled over the nations throughout the past 1,700 years.  Rome is the foundation for the seventh "head" — the end-time revived Roman Confederation.

 

The seven heads, as the prophecy states, represent seven kings or kingdoms. There are actually Biblical empires that have sup­ported the woman — the apostate religion — down through the centuries.

 

At the time of John's vision, five had fallen, the sixth was ex­istent, and the seventh was still future.

The five that had passed away were Assyria, Egypt, Baby­lon, Medo-Persia and Greece. And the sixth, which was still existent in John’s time, was Rome.

 

The seventh head or kingdom is the end-time empire of "the beast"; that is, the Antichrist.

As we study Daniel's prophecy in chapters 2 and 7, we un­derstand, the end-time empire develops out of the ancient Roman Empire. We see it developing in Europe today; the 27 nations in the European Union are at present striving to forge a political and economic unity.

 

The Bible shows us that this end-time revived Roman Empire will be the dominant power on the earth, during the Tribulation time. The leader of this Empire, the Antichrist, will become the world dictator — after a world government is created. The world government of the Beast, then becomes the eighth head, having developed out of the seventh head — the end-time Roman Empire.

 

So the sixth head is ancient Rome; the seventh head is the end-time revived Rome (Europe); and the eighth head is the world government that the Antichrist will control.

All the past empires have supported the harlot system - the apostate religion - over the cen­turies. Europe is doing so now! But notice, the seventh kingdom remains for a little while. This is in contrast to the earlier empires, some of which lasted for centuries.  The seventh kingdom will be replaced by the world government.

 

THE RIDDLE OF THE TEN HORNS

Now what about the ten horns? It is clear that they are ten kings  — future kings. They are not ancient empires, but end-time kingdoms that surrender their sovereignty to one leader — the Beast, the Antichrist.

 

So the seven heads, and the eighth head, are empires over the centuries. And the ten horns are ten kingdoms of the end-time. They are the horns on the SEVENTH head — the revived Roman Empire; and they will rule the world with the Antichrist for “one hour”; that is, for three and a half years — the second half of the Great Tribulation.

 

THE DESTRUCTION OF MYSTERY BABYLON

17:16-18. “The ten horns which you saw, along with the beast, will hate the harlot. They will bring her to ruin and leave her naked; they will eat her flesh and will burn her up with fire, for God has put it into their hearts to execute His purpose by having a common purpose, and by surrendering their sovereignty to the beast, until the words of God are fulfilled. The woman you saw is that great city which reigns over the kings of the earth.”  

 

Riding on the Beast in great splendor, it might seem that Babylon is in full control. But not so! She sits very pre­cariously in the saddle. Her “marriage” to the Man of Sin, is a short-lived affair. And it does not end in divorce; it ends in murder.  In verse 16, you can read it again:

 

“And the ten horns which you saw, and the beast, these will hate the harlot and will make her desolate and naked, and will eat her flesh and will burn her up with fire."

 

The false Babylonian system will be destroyed by the very power of the political Rome with which she was so closely associated. This does not mean that the Antichrist will then restore true religion! Rather, he will substitute the Babylon religion with an even greater decep­tion and abomination; that is, the religion of Satan. That in due course will be destroyed by the Lord Jesus when He returns in power and great glory. (Rev 19:11-21)

 

In the meantime, many “Christian” leaders, along with leaders from most world religions, are getting caught up in promoting ecumenism and the World Composite Religion under the guise of working for peace and harmony among all peoples.

 

“There is a way that seems right to a man,  but at the end it is the way of death.”      

                                                                                                     (Proverbs 14:12)    

                 

The World Composite Religion which the Vatican has been supporting for many decades, could well be headed by the new Pope, as Catholicism and its “Christian” fellow-travelers form the majority religion in the world.

 

This endtime Mystery Babylon will increase its enslavement of hundreds of millions of lives, and render them powerless against the satanic dictatorship of the Antichrist and the False Prophet. Worship of the Beast will be enforced, and it will bring utter destruction to multitudes of people.

Here is a final word of exhortation, and warning, to all who seek to follow Messiah, Y’shua in truth in these days:

 

“Then I heard another voice from heaven say:

'Come out of her, My people, so that you will not participate in her sins, and that you will not receive of her plagues; 'for her sins have piled up as high as heaven, and God has remembered her depravity and crimes.”  (Revelation 18:4-5)

 

 


 

     SYRIA  - “FALLING APART”    

 

(& A NIGHTMARE UNFOLDS FOR ISRAEL)


 

JAN 29, 2013. Israeli Air Force Commander Maj. Gen. Amir Eshel has warned that Syria is falling apart and no one knows what the next day may bring.  “War may not break out tomorrow,” he said,but we stand ready for any eventuality.”

 

The “no comment” stance on the Syrian civil war, long held by PM Netanyahu and Defence Minister Ehud Barak is untenable and pointless, especially after Barak cut short an overseas family trip, to fly home in a hurry.

 

No one believes the official explanation that the three Iron Dome anti-missile batteries stationed over the weekend in northern Israel - in the sight of many thousands of local dwellers - are there for a pre-planned routine test, especially after a senior Israeli officer stated that large Hizb’ullah forces are parked at Bashar Assads chemical weapons stores poised ready to seize them.

 

If this happens, said the officer, “A decision to attack Syria or Lebanon will need to be implemented immediately.” – DEBKAfile

 

Ynet reports: "The defence establishment's concerns about the potential threat of chemical weapons from Syria and Hizb’ullah has not gone unnoticed by the Israeli public. More Israelis are updating their gas masks and ABC kits. In fact, the number of Israelis changing their non-conventional warfare protection kits has nearly tripled over the past month.

 

 

"UNPRECEDENTED LEVELS OF HORROR"

Describing the situation on the ground in Syria as being at "unprecedented levels of horror," Arab League envoy Lakhdar Brahimi called on the UN Security Council in New York to take action to end the Assad regime.

"Unprecedented levels of horror have been reached. The tragedy does not have an end,” Mr. Brahimi said amid reports of a shocking new massacre in the Syrian city of Aleppo. “The country is breaking up before everyone’s eyes. Only the international community can help and first and foremost the Security Council.”

But the UN is divided right down the middle, with the Russians and Chinese supporting the secular Assad regime and the Obama administration supporting the Islamist "rebels" over Congressional objections.

 

 

ISRAEL HITS SYRIAN MILITARY FACILITIES

JAN 30/13. “Israel bombed a suspected shipment of anti-aircraft missiles in Syria, according to regional and U.S. officials, in its most ambitious strike inside its neighbor’s territory in nearly two chaotic years of civil war there,” reports the Wall Street Journal. 

 

“The early-morning strike in a border area west of Damascus targeted a convoy of trucks carrying Russian-made SA-17 missiles to Hizb’ullah, the anti-Israel Shi’ite militant and political group in Lebanon.”

 

“Syria maintained that the accounts of a strike on an arms convoy near the country’s border with Lebanon were wrong. Instead, Syria’s military said, Israeli jets had attacked a military facility near Damascus. Israeli warplanes violated our airspace at dawn and directly struck one of the scientific research centers responsible for elevating resistance and self-defence capabilities in the area of Jamraya in the Damascus countryside.”

 

The attack killed two workers and injured five others, it said, and “caused significant material damage and the destruction of the complex.” Syrian activists say the Jamraya site is in a mountainous area of military facilities and training camps located on a heavily guarded road just off the main Damascus-Beirut highway.

 

Whether the attack was on the convoy, or the research centre – or both — Syria and Iran threatened harsh retaliation against Israel for the attack. But both nations backed down a few days later.  Syria was running scared of inviting a more powerful response from a powerful Israel.  And Iran evidently believes this is not the time to provoke a massive attack on its nuclear sites.

 

SYRIAN COMPLEX STRUCK BY ISRAEL WAS BUILT BY NORTH KOREA

North Korea played a major role in the construction of a chemical weapons facility targeted by Israel on Jan. 30, said a report in the World Tribune.

 

SYRIA SCALES BACK THREATS AGAINST ISRAEL OVER AIRSTRIKE, SUGGESTS IT WON'T RETALIATE

FEB 3/13. Syria's defence minister signalled that his country won't hit back at Israel over an airstrike inside Syria, claiming the Israeli raid was actually in retaliation for his regime's offensive against rebels he called "tools" of the   Jewish state. - Fox News

 

   IRAN REFUSES ASSAD’S REQUEST TO HIT BACK AT ISRAEL

Syria's President Bashar Assad asked Iran to hit back at Israel on its behalf for a reported air strike, according to an Israeli TV report, but the Iranians told him, "You need to take care of your own business." - Times of Israel

 

 

ISRAEL PREPARES FOR CONFLICT

As tensions with Syria escalate, Israel has sent its national security adviser, Yaakov Amidror, to Russia and its military intelligence chief Major-General Aviv Kochavi to the United States for consultations. Netanyahu has also ordered Iron Dome Batteries deployed in the North.

"Two Iron Dome batteries have been deployed in northern Israel over the past few days,” the IDF said.

 

"One battery of the missile-defence system was deployed in the Krayot area, while the other was installed in the Galilee region.  Additional, fully operational batteries have already been deployed in Haifa and in other locations.

 

About a week ago the security establishment successfully tested an upgraded version of the Iron Dome rocket defence system in Israel's central region. The upgrades are designed to give the Iron Dome 'improved capabilities against an unprecedented range of threats,' the Defence Ministry said.  'The test, which was completed success-fully, will lead to an upgrade in Iron Dome's operational capabilities.'"

 

“HIZB’ULLAH ALREADY HAS SYRIAN CHEMICAL WEAPONS”

JAN 31/13.  As reports and analyses of what was said to be an Israeli attack on advanced Russian missiles dispatched from Syria to Hizb’ullah terrorist bases along the border with Lebanon, Syrian rebels said that Hizb’ullah had already received numerous advanced weapons from Syria – including chemical weapons. A report in a Saudi newspaper quoted Syrian rebel groups as saying that Syria had transferred chemical weapons to Hizb’ullah last year.

 

Israel has said that transfer of such weapons would be a “red line” which Jerusalem could not ignore, essentially a declaration of war by Syria and Hizb’ullah against Israel.

 

The report in the Al-Wattan newspaper quoted a rebel spokesperson as saying that the transfer took place over a 40-day period in February and March 2012. The shipment included at least two tons of mustard gas, and long range missiles that could reach within 300 kilometers into Israel and that were capable of carrying chemical weapons.

 

The potential threat of chemical weapons from Syria and Hizb’ullah has not gone unnoticed by the Israeli public. The number of Israelis seeking Gas Masks has tripled.

 

 

OMINOUS DEVELOPMENT IN IRAN'S

PATH TO NUCLEAR WEAPONS

Iran is planning to speed up its nuclear program by using new centrifuges that can quickly enrich uranium so that it could be used to build an atomic bomb sooner than had been anticipated. The White House called this "another provocative step by Iran."

 

The 3,000 centrifuges would take up to a year to install, so Iran still has not crossed the threshold to a nuclear weapon. But to David Albright, who closely monitors the Iranian nuclear program, this is an ominous development. "It's Iran signalling that they're going to dramatically increase their capability to produce enriched uranium, and it's the thing that everyone has been fearing," he says.

The new centrifuges, which Iran apparently has been able to produce despite international sanctions, could turn out enriched uranium at three to five times the rate of its current centrifuges.

Once installed and in operation, the centrifuges could give Iran the capability to make a dash for the bomb faster than the US and its allies could react.

 

"In one or two weeks they could have enough for a nuclear weapon, and that's going to be hard to both detect and respond to," says Albright.

 

He estimates Iran could achieve that so-called break-out capability by the middle of 2014, although Benjamin Netanyahu has famously drawn a red line that Iran could cross as early as the middle of this year. Israel's red line is based on the amount of uranium Iran has enriched.

Iran's intentions remain a mystery, but one thing is certain: they keep getting better at enriching uranium.  David Martin - http://www.cbsnews.com/-                                     

IRAN HAS 'ALL THE INGREDIENTS NECESSARY' TO MAKE A NUCLEAR WEAPON

FEB 3/13. Iran has "all the ingredients necessary" to make a nuclear weapon but is holding off production to stave off military action, Israeli security advisers said on Monday. - UK Telegraph

IRAN READY TO 'MARCH ON ISRAEL, AND TO WIPE IT OUT'

The Iranian people are ready to march on Israel to "wipe it out" if the Jewish state attacks the Islamic republic, Ahmadinejad said in his latest anti-Semitic diatribe, published Wednesday by Egypt's state news agency.    - Arutz Sheva

 

In a contradictory statement, Ahmadinejad said:

IRAN IS ALREADY A NUCLEAR STATE, BUT IT HAS NO INTENTION OF ATTACKING ISRAEL

FEB 6/13. President Ahmadinejad says that while Iran is already a nuclear state, it has no intention of attacking Israel. Ahmadinejad was interviewed on the eve of his visit to Cairo, where he will attend the 12th Islamic Summit Conference.  - Ha'aretz

IRAN'S SUPREME LEADER SPURNS US OFFER OF BILATERAL TALKS

FEB 9, 2013. TEHRAN: Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has rejected any idea of bilateral talks with the US and scoffed at Iranian officials who might consider such negotiations.

The Ayatollah was apparently responding to an offer by the US for one-on-one negotiations on a range of topics, including Iran's disputed nuclear program.

 

Khamenei was blunt in his speech to air force commanders in his Tehran office. He said while some ''simple-minded people'' might be happy about the prospect of bilateral talks, Iran had seen nothing from Washington other than the same conspiracies.

 

Noting the international sanctions against Iran, the Ayatollah said: ''The Iranian nation will not negotiate under pressure. 'The US is pointing a gun at Iran and wants us to talk to them. The Iranian nation will not be intimidated by these actions. Direct talks will not solve any problems.''

 

Iranian and Western officials have said Iran had agreed to resume multilateral nuclear talks with world powers this month in Kazakhstan. Ayatollah Khamenei's rejection of talks with the US will not affect those negotiations, set to begin on February 26.  - The New York Times 

 

 

“EGYPT COULD COLLAPSE”

JAN 29/13. Egyptian Defence Minister Gen., Abdel Fatah al-Sisi, warned that Egypt could be facing collapse.  He explained that military units have been stationed in cities next to the Suez Canal, where riots have broken out, in order to protect the canal.

 

El-Sisi was reacting to the chaos and lawlessness engulfing Egypt.

 

The government headed by President Mohamed Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood is no longer a functioning administration. They  have been reduced to the single task of fighting to hang onto power.

 

"The continuing conflict between political forces and their differences concerning the management of the country could lead to a collapse of the state and threaten future generations," Al-Sisi said in a speech to army cadets that was quoted on the Egyptian military spokesman's Facebook page. Al-Sisi said the country's economic, political and social challenges signify "a real threat to the security of Egypt and the cohesiveness of the Egyptian state."

 

At least 52 people have been killed in riots that broke out a few days ago, at the two year anniversary of the uprising that toppled President Hosni Mubarak. Many of the casualties were in the city of Suez, where the military was sent to quell the riots.

 

The situation worsened when a court sentenced to death 21 soccer fans who were found guilty of causing the riot in a stadium in Port Said last year, in which 74 people were killed.

 

Egyptian president Mohammed Morsi announced that he was placing three cities under curfew because of rioting – Port Said, Suez and Ismailiya. The curfew will be in force from 9:00 PM to 6:00 AM for the next 30 days, as part of a state of emergency declared in these cities.

 

None of the forces of law and order - the army, internal security, police - are willing to clash head-on with the opposition protesters rampaging on the streets of the main cities including Cairo.

 

Some towns have descended into chaos and some out-lying areas in this country of 90 million are no longer receiving regular food and water supplies.

The Egyptian defence minister’s warning may be taken two ways:

 

1. As a last warning to the Muslim Brotherhood and the opposition on the streets that this is the eleventh hour and if they don’t step back from their confrontation, the military will be forced to seize power to save the country.

2. Alternatively, that the army will not interfere and will stand aside for now, while warning that a civil war in Egypt would be more extensive and calamitous than the vicious conflict bringing Syria to ruin in the last two years.

 

As Egypt and Syria teeter on the brink of catastrophe, Gen. Eshel’s dry forecast of doom correctly noted that no one knows what tomorrow will bring.

However, Israel is coming face to face with its worst fear - being hemmed in by a blazing ring of hopeless conflicts just across its borders: Syria and Lebanon in the north; Egypt in the south; and Jordan under threat in the East.

 

 

EGYPT ~ IRAN RELATIONS IMPROVE

AHMADINEJAD MAKES HISTORIC VISIT TO CAIRO

FEB 5/2013. Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad arrived in Cairo, marking the first visit of an Iranian president to Egypt in over thirty years.

 

Egypt's Islamist President Mohamed Morsi welcomed Ahmadinejad at Cairo airport as he disembarked from the plane.

 

Ahmadinejad, who is the first Iranian president to visit Egypt since the 1979 Iranian revolution ruptured diplomatic ties between the two countries, will attend an Organization of Islamic Cooperation conference in Cairo and will hold talks with Egyptian officials during his three-day visit.

 

The Iranian leader expressed his desire to also visit Gaza during his trip. “If they allow it, I would go to Gaza to visit the people,” Ahmadinejad said in an interview on the Al Mayadeen news channel.  "My wish is bigger than this. I wish to pray in Jerusalem for complete liberation,” he added.

 

Egyptian Foreign Minister Mohamed Kamel Amr attempted to quell concerns expressed by a number of Gulf States over the increasingly close ties between Iran and Egypt since President Morsi’s rise to power.  “Egypt’s bilateral relations with any country would not come at the expense of Gulf security,” Amr said.  -  Arutz Sheva

 

 

      THE PALESTINIANS

“ALL OF ISRAEL IS PALESTINE”

The Fatah party, headed by PA Mahmoud Abbas, has made official what it has been saying quietly, and has adopted a new logo showing all of Israel as Palestine.

 

Palestine Media Watch (PMW) revealed that the official PA daily published the new official logo.

The logo marks the 48th anniversary of the founding of Fatah by Yasser Arafat and includes a map with the PA flag and a map of Israel that appears to be a depiction of the black and white checked kefiyah, a symbol of the violent intifada, and the slogan “the state and victory."

 

For the past year, official PA documents have increasingly shown Palestine as covering all of Israel, but this is the first time the Fatah party has placed the map on its logo.

 

The Zionist Organization of America reacted to the new logo by urging President Obama, the European Union and the United Nations to condemn this outrage which reiterates the clear fact that Abbas and the Fatah/PA have no interest in peace with Israel, only its destruction.

 

ZOA National President Morton A. Klein said, "This new Fatah logo graphically depicts the ugly truth about this unreconstructed terrorist organization whose Constitution to this day calls for the destruction of Israel (Article 13) and the use of terrorism as an essential element in the struggle to achieve this aim (Article 19). … It belies the fiction that Mahmoud Abbas is a 'moderate' who seeks peace with Israel, and who wishes to end Palestinian terrorism against Israeli Jews. It also makes clear that the principles of Yasser Arafat are respected and promoted.

 

"The new Fatah logo is not an aberration. The Palestinian Authority continues to promote the incitement of hatred in Palestinian mosques, schools and media.

 

"The ZOA renews its call upon the Obama Administration to stop wasting hundreds of millions of dollars on the unreformed terrorist entity that is Fatah, to stop making excuses for Abbas, and to stop pressuring Israel to make dangerous concessions on the altar of appeasement.”     - Arutz Sheva

 

HAMAS LEADER MASHAAL SEEKING PRESIDENCY OF PLO    

JAN 29/ 2013. Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal is seeking to take over the presidency of the PLO, currently chaired by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, the London-based daily Al-Quds Al-Arabi reported today.

 

According to the report, Mashaal’s desire to chair the PLO is behind his decision not to stand for re-election to his position as chairman of Hamas’s Political Bureau.

 

Al-Quds Al-Arabi quoted Palestinian sources as saying several Arab states, led by Jordan and Qatar, are pushing for Mashaal to chair the PLO as a way of getting Hamas to sign the Oslo Accords and recognize Israel.

 

The report added that Mashaal’s recent meeting with Jordanian King Abdullah was part of the regional effort to spur the resumption of peace talks which would lead to the establishment of a Palestinian state within the pre-1967 lines with agreed upon land swaps.

 

Abdullah was seeking a commitment from Hamas to accept such an agreement.

 

Mashaal and other Hamas leaders were expelled from Jordan and stripped of their Jordanian citizenship more than a decade ago. But over the past 18 months, Jordan has moved toward restoring its relations with Hamas, allowing Mashaal and some of his top aides to visit the kingdom on at least three occasions.

 

The rapprochement between Jordan and Hamas came after the Islamist movement pledged to refrain from meddling in the kingdom’s internal affairs.  - By JPOST.COM

 

 

PRESIDENT OBAMA TO VISIT ISRAEL IN MARCH

In January, President Obama said he would be happy to visit Israel during his second term, but only if he sees diplomatic progress in the region.

In February it was announced that for the first time as the American leader, President Barack Obama will visit Israel in March (possibly March 20) as part of a wider tour of key nations in the epicenter.

While the Iranian nuclear threat and the implosion of Syria will be top priority topics for newly re-elected Prime Minister Netanyahu, the newly re-elected Mr. Obama will likely make jump-starting the moribund peace talks between the Israelis and Palestinians his top priority.

The big question is whether this trip will represent a “re-set” of U.S.-Israeli relations in light of tensions in the past between Obama and Netanyahu, or whether the White House and State Department are planning a high-profile effort to pressure the not-yet-formed Israeli government to divide Jerusalem and make dangerous concessions.

 

 

U.S. -  NEW SECRETARY OF STATE   

FEB 1/13. Among his first official phone calls as US Secretary of State, John Kerry, (who has replaced Hillary Clinton), called the Israeli Prime Minister, President Shimon Peres, and Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas.

His staff indicates Kerry will head to Jerusalem and Ramallah this month to discuss how to move forward with creating a viable Palestinian state.

 

Ahmadinejad:

“Muslims Should Mobilize to Destroy Zionism”

“Under the circumstances when the corrupt, uncultured and murderous Zionists are occupying and killing oppressed people, we should not sit idly by,” cried Mr Ahmadinejad.  - The PressTV

 

OBAMA SECRETLY PLEDGES TO DIVIDE JERUSALEM

Will press Israel into new so-called land-for-peace talks

JAN 28, 2013.  Now that he has secured his second term, President Barack Obama has already secretly pledged to the Palestinians he will press Israel into a new round of so-called land-for-peace negotiations, a top Palestinian Authority negotiator told KleinOnline.

The negotiator said top members of the Obama administration told the Palestinians the US president will renew talks aimed at creating a Palestinian state in the so-called 1967 borders – meaning in the West Bank, Gaza Strip and, notably, eastern Jerusalem.

The negotiator further revealed when it comes to dividing Jerusalem, Obama wants to rehash what is known as the Clinton parameters.

That formula, pushed by Bill Clinton during the Camp David talks in 2000, called for Jewish areas of Jerusalem to remain Israeli while the Palestinians will get sovereignty over neighborhoods that are largely Arab.

KleinOnline previously reported how Palestinians are building illegally in Jewish-owned areas of Jerusalem, changing facts on the ground that resulted in Arab majorities in certain neighborhoods.

Just before November’s presidential election, a senior PA negotiator claimed to KleinOnline, if Obama secures another four years in office, he will use his second term to target Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as the main party to blame for the collapse of Mideast peace talks.

The negotiator said Obama quietly pledged to the Palestinians a campaign at the United Nations to renew U.N. Security Council Resolution 242, which calls for a Palestinian state in the “1967 borders.”

The negotiator claimed Obama had promised the PA that the establishment of a Palestinian state will be one of the main priorities for a second term.

“Netanyahu will be declared the main person responsible for the collapse of the peace process.”    http://kleinonline.wnd.com/ 

 

US MAY IINCREASE PRESSURE ON IRAN

IN RETURN FOR PROGRESS WITH PALESTINIANS

White House is said to be open to a deal being worked out by

Netanyahu’s aides ahead of Obama’s visit next month.

 

FEB. 10, 2013. President Obama will reportedly offer to increase the pressure on Iran in exchange for Israeli concessions toward the Palestinians when he visits Israel next month.

The report, in the London Sunday Times, comes against the backdrop of expectations for a “peace summit” between Obama, Israeli PM Netanyahu and PA President Abbas next month.

According to the British paper, two top Netanyahu aides dispatched to Washington, are laying the groundwork for a Tehran-for-Ramallah deal, which the White House is open to.

As part of the deal, Obama would be asked to ramp up pressure on Iran to pull back from its nuclear program, and in exchange Israel would hold talks with the PA on borders, security and even final status issues such as Jerusalem and settlements.

Last week, Amidror, Netanyahu’s national security adviser, said that settlement building was problematic from an international standpoint, possibly signaling a change  in  Israeli  government  thinking  ahead  of Netanyahu’s next term and Obama’s visit.

Outgoing Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon said he believed Obama would meet with Abbas and Netanyahu in Jerusalem.

The three last met in Washington in September 2009, leading to a 10-month Israeli moratorium on settlement building in the West Bank, but diplomatic contacts between Jerusalem and Ramallah have been mostly frozen since.

The announcement of the Obama visit has raised hopes for progress on talks between Israel and the Palestinians.

The British paper also reported that White House officials were attempting to consolidate support from Turkey and Jordan for a push to “stabilize the region.”

Obama is also expected to visit Jordan during his trip, which will reportedly begin on March 20.   http://www.timesofisrael.com/  

 

NATO CHIEF:   

EU MUST SPEND MORE ON MILITARY

JAN 31/2013. NATO chief Anders Fogh Rasmussen has urged EU countries to spend more on defence despite the economic crisis, or risk losing US solidarity.

He said in a foreword to the alliance's report on 2012, that: "If current defence spending trends were to continue, that would limit the practical ability of NATO's European nations to work together with their North American allies. But it would also risk weakening the political support for our alliance in the US."

“NATO is still the most important military power in the world. The security challenges of the 21st century - terrorism, proliferation, piracy, cyber warfare, unstable states - will not go away as we focus on fixing our economies.”  Rasmussen warned:

“The rise of emerging powers could create a growing gap between their capacity to act and exert influence on the international stage and our ability to do so."

The report says the US accounted for 72% of NATO countries' defence spending in 2012 compared to 68% in 2007. France, Germany, Italy and the UK made up the bulk of the rest, but the French contribution fell steeply.

"This has the potential to undermine alliance solidarity and puts at risk the ability of the European allies to act without the involvement of the United States," the report notes.

It adds that NATO spending as a proportion of world military expenditure fell to 60% in 2011 from 69% in 2003, and is to hit 56% in 2014.

Former US defence chief Robert Gates in a speech in Brussels in 2011 also voiced alarm.

"The blunt reality is that there will be a dwindling appetite and patience in the US Congress - and in the American body politic writ large - to expend increasingly precious funds on behalf of nations that are apparently unwilling to devote the necessary resources or make the necessary changes to be serious and capable partners in their own defence," he said at the time.

Gates and Rasmussen's anxiety is not confined to NATO. Speaking in Brussels also on the margins of an EU foreign ministers' meeting, Poland's Radek Sikorski said the Union needs a real defence force of its own.

"I think the Mali crisis shows this is necessary because the next crisis could unfold even more quickly and we need to be able to react instantly," he told press.

"Let's recall that events in Mali unfolded very fast. The terrorists crossed the line of contact and France reacted from one day to the next. But we know that in the EU, as in the Vatican, the wheels of state turn very slowly," he added.  - Euobserver

 

U.S. SENATE APPROVES BILL TO SUSPEND DEBT LIMIT

JAN 31, 2013.  Congress has passed a must-do legislation to permit the government to borrow hundreds of billions of dollars more to meet its obligations, averting a first-ever government default that had loomed as early as mid-February.

The legislation would temporarily suspend the $16.4 trillion limit on federal borrowing, which experts say would allow the government to borrow about $450 billion to meet interest payments and obligations like Social Security benefits and government salaries.            

 

 

                           AUSTRALIAN LABOUR PARTY    

                            FACING MORAL CRISIS            PARLIAMENT HOUSE

ALP vice-president Tony Sheldon has launched a ferocious attack on the political and moral crisis inside Labor, and the toxicity of its most powerful faction, saying only a ground-up change of culture can restore its fortunes.

Speaking just days after Julia Gillard set September 14 as the election date and as Labor battles twin scandals in NSW, Mr Sheldon said the party faced a "catastrophic situation," with its brand damaged by a failure to focus on what matters to members and supporters.

"Our crisis is more than just a crisis of trust brought on by the corrupt behaviour of property scammers and lobbyists," Mr Sheldon told a factional dinner for the Right at the Young Labor annual conference.

"It's a crisis of belief brought on by a lack of moral and political purpose. Our party is in a very serious and potentially catastrophic situation,” Sheldon said.    - The Australian / Feb 2, 2013

 

 

  CAN AMERICA SURVIVE IF AMERICANS

     NO LONGER AGREE ON A CORE SET OF SHARED VALUES?

By Michael, http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/

This message can be applied to all nations today!

JAN 9, 2013. What does America stand for? That question is a lot more complicated than you might think. Our Founding Fathers established a Republic that was based on a set of shared values that were embodied in the text of the U.S. Constitution. But today, many of our politicians openly disregard the Constitution whenever they want and it has become fashionable to mock the U.S. Constitution.

For example, the New York Times recently published a piece by Georgetown University Professor Louis Michael Seidman entitled, "Let's Give Up On The Constitution," in which he publicly called the Constitution "archaic" and "downright evil." This is a man that has been teaching constitutional law to the next generation of lawyers at one of the top universities in the nation for nearly 40 years.

Unfortunately, Seidman is not an aberration. The truth is that law schools all over America are absolutely packed with professors that teach that we should consider the U.S. Constitution a "living, breathing document" that must "evolve" as society evolves. They also teach that when we find something in the Constitution that does not work for us today that we should just ignore it. In fact, in his New York Times article Seidman insisted that "constitutional disobedience" is "as old as the Republic."  But if we can just ignore the U.S. Constitution whenever we want, where does that leave us? Should we be able to ignore all laws when they are not convenient for us?

Personally, I strongly believe that we should follow the U.S. Constitution, and there are millions of others out there that agree with me. If we want to amend the Constitution, there is a procedure for doing that, but it is not easy. Our founders did that to try to ensure that any changes to our Constitution would reflect an overwhelming consensus of the American people.

But today America is more divided than ever before. We can't seem to agree on much of anything. We are at a period in our history when we desperately need to come together, but instead, we are constantly at each other's throats.

 

IS THERE ANYTHING THAT TRULY

UNITES US ANYMORE?

In the old days, if you would have asked people to give you a one word definition of America, many people would have responded by naming important values such as "freedom" and "liberty."

Sadly, much of the country appears not to even value those things any longer. One poll found that 51% of all Americans believe that "it is necessary to give up some civil liberties in order to make the country safe from terrorism."

Not only that, we continue to elect control freak politicians from both political parties that appear to be obsessed with constantly eroding our freedoms and liberties. There are literally millions of ridiculous laws, rules and regulations that govern even the smallest details of our lives, and the government is constantly inventing new ways to watch, track, register, monitor and control all of us. If we continue down this path, we are going to end up in a very dark place as a nation.

WHAT ABOUT ECONOMICS?

Aren't we united by a common economic philosophy? Sadly, no! We are not!

In the old days, Americans overwhelmingly believed in free market capitalism and overwhelmingly rejected socialism, but now that is rapidly changing.

According to a stunning Pew Research Center survey, 49% of Americans in the 18 to 29 age bracket have a positive view of socialism while only 46% of Americans in that same age bracket have a positive view of capitalism.

So what will the future look like if we continue to see this kind of shift among our young people?

And of course we have not had anything even close to a true free market system in the United States in a very, very long time. Our economy is dominated by a partnership between the federal government and the monolithic predator corporations that dominate our society. Individuals and small businesses that try to compete are being absolutely suffocated. Our Founding Fathers were very suspicious of all large concentrations of power, and they sought to greatly limit the power of both the federal government and of the big corporations. But today we have gone totally in the other direction.

Well, is there anything else that truly unites America?

WHAT ABOUT RELIGION?

Of course it is true that the overwhelming majority of the early colonists were Christian, and even 50 years ago it would have been accurate to say that America was a "Christian nation," but that is definitely no longer the case today.

The number of Americans with no religious affiliation has absolutely exploded in recent years. It has grown by a whopping 25% over the past five years, and meanwhile the percentage of people that identify themselves as "Christians" in America is dropping like a rock. In fact, one poll found that the percentage of Protestants in the United States has dropped below 50% for the first time ever.

So what fundamental principles do most Americans actually agree on? Is there still a core set of shared values that the entire nation can agree upon? If not, where does that leave us?

Unfortunately, I think that it leaves us in a very difficult place. The divisiveness that we have seen in Washington D.C. in recent years is just the tip of the iceberg. We are living in a nation today that is more divided than I can ever remember. A whole host of opinion polls have shown that anger and frustration in America are rising to very dangerous levels, and instead of focusing on the real reasons for our problems we all tend to point the fingers at one another.

In America today, we have been trained to group ourselves together by certain "categories" and to see those on the other side as "the enemy." This is a very dangerous thing. It keeps the American people from coming together to fix the very serious problems that are facing our country.

The truth is that we are being divided in dozens of different ways today.

Of course we should never compromise what we believe just for the sake of "unity."  That is foolishness. But you can disagree with someone without hating them.

In America today, people will find a reason to hate some-

one else at the drop of a hat. Surprisingly large numbers of Americans will hate others because of where they are from, what they look like, what their ethnic background is, what their political affiliation is or what their religious beliefs are.

If America is going to have any kind of a future, we have got to start loving one another. That does not mean that we all have to agree with one another. But we do need to start caring about one another and hoping for the best for one another.

For example, I fundamentally disagree with almost every single thing that Barack Obama does. But I do not hate him. On the contrary, I pray for him and his family. I would love to see him experience a 180 degree turn-around and start fighting for the truth. I believe that love is stronger than hate, and I believe that there is hope for every one of us.

I know that I have had my mind changed on a lot of things throughout my life, and if I could go back there are many things I would do differently. I am thankful for those that loved me and had patience with me when I was younger.

And that is the kind of grace that we should extend toward others. Yes, a stand needs to be made when others are promoting evil and trampling on our rights. But instead of responding to hate with even greater amounts of hate, perhaps it would be better if we responded with even greater amounts of love.

And I am not saying that we always have to be "meek" in our approach. For example, if I was pushing a shopping cart around the local supermarket and I came upon a young child that was about to guzzle an entire bottle of liquid bleach, I would yell and scream at that child to stop. Sometimes yelling and screaming is the loving thing to do.

The truth is that we are never going to fix the very serious problems that are facing this country if we choose to hate one another because of what we look like or who our ancestors were. We are never going to fix the very serious problems that are facing this country if we choose to remain trapped in the "red vs. blue" paradigm and keep pointing fingers of hatred at one another. We are never going to fix the very serious problems that are facing this country if we would rather indulge in hatred rather than love.

That doesn't mean that we don't fight for what is right. There are most certainly politicians that need to be voted out of office. There are most certainly big corporations that need to be exposed. There are most definitely evil agendas that are being promoted at the highest levels. Our society is clearly headed in the wrong direction and this country needs a massive wake up call.

But I think that we will get a lot farther if love is our primary motivation. Without love, we are nothing. Let us start to love one another as we would like to be loved ourselves.

/theeconomiccollapseblog.com/archives/can-america-survive-if-americans-no-longer-agree-on-a-core-set-of-shared-values


“Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. The one who does not love, does not know God, for GOD IS LOVE.

“The love of God was revealed among us in this - that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we might live through Him.” (1 John 4:7-9)

  

 

 

RECORD-SETTING ASTEROID FLYBY

FEB 15/13.   A 50-metres-wide asteroid whizzed past Earth today in what NASA says was the closest flyby ever predicted for an object of its size.

It missed us “by about 15 minutes.”

 

Asteroid "DA14" passed only 27,000 kilometres above our planet's surface. That was outside the Earth's atmosphere, but the space rock came into an orbit closer than most of our weather and communications satellites.

"This is a record-setting close approach," says Don Yeomans of NASA's Near Earth Object Program at JPL. "Since regular sky surveys began in the 1990's, we've never seen an object this big get so close to Earth."

The asteroid was relatively small by celestial standards. Nevertheless, if it were to hit the Earth, the impact would be roughly equivalent to a 2.4 megaton bomb - enough to flatten a large area but not inflict a global catastrophe.

An object that destroyed over 2,000 square kilometres of forest in Tunguska, Siberia, on June 30 1908, was of similar size as DA14 . Astronomers have detected some 9,500 celestial bodies of various sizes that pass near Earth, but they estimate their number may be 100,000.

NASA estimates a smallish asteroid like DA14 flies close to the Earth every 40 years on average, but only hits the Earth once every 1,200 years.

"DA14" may seem to be a small inconsequential event, as we’re getting quite accustomed to flybys and “near misses.”  But is it not another “Sign in the sky” of which the Master warned?

 

 

 

   NIGHTMARE AS METEOR HITS RUSSIA

  

FEB 15/13.  About 1,200 people, including 200 children, were injured when a meteor streaked across the sky and exploded with a blinding flash, and a powerful Sonic boom, over central Russia.

Fireballs rained over a vast area as the explosion caused a shock wave that smashed windows and damaged buildings. The monster left a long white trail that could be seen as far as 200 kilometres away.

The meteor, which was not related to asteroid D14, was estimated to be several metres long and weigh about 10 tonnes. It was an unprecedented event in modern times.

Y’SHUA SAID: “And there will be signs in the sun and moon and stars, and upon earth despair among nations ... for the very powers of the heavens will be shaken.”  (Luke 21:25-26)

We may not yet be seeing the heavens shaken, but we are seeing warning shots. Look at this recent report:

 

 

SOLAR SUPERSTORM THAT IS COMING

A solar "superstorm" could knock out Earth's communications satellites, cause dangerous power surges in the national grid and disrupt crucial navigation aids and aircraft avionics.

It is inevitable that an extreme solar storm – caused by the Sun ejecting billions of tonnes of highly-energetic matter travelling at a million miles an hour – will hit the Earth at some time in the near future, but it is impossible to predict this storm more than about 30 minutes before it actually happens, a team of engineers has warned.

In 1989 a relatively minor solar storm knocked out several

key electrical transformers in the Canadian national grid, causing major power blackouts. Similar solar storms significantly increased atmospheric radiation levels in 1956, 1972, 1989 and 2003.

"Satellites are certainly in the front line of a superstorm. They are part of our infrastructure and we have concerns about their survival in a solar superstorm," said a space engineer at Surrey University.

AN AWFUL SHAKING IS SCHEDULED!

But the real shaking of the heavens is not so far away.  It will be in the Great Tribulation.   - Revelation 6:12-17:

“I watched as He opened the sixth seal; and there was a great earthquake; and the sun turned black as sackcloth made of hair, and the whole moon became blood-red; and the stars of the sky fell to earth, as a fig tree casts its unripe figs when shaken by a strong wind. The sky vanished like a scroll being rolled up; and every mountain and island were moved out of its place.  Then the kings of the earth, the great men, the generals, the rich, the mighty, and every slave and free man hid themselves in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains. They called to the mountains and to the rocks, 'Fall on us and hide us from the Presence of Him (the Almighty) who sits on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb; for the great day of His wrath has come ...'" 

 

This is horrendous, my friends!  This should cause us to tremble in our shoes. This is a bombardment of space rocks – asteroids. Oh, woe to the inhabitants of the earth who are left behind.  Oh that men would turn to the LORD, now, while He is calling to them:

“As I live!” declares the Lord, YHWH, “I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that the wicked turn from his way and live. Turn back, turn back from your evil ways! For why should you die? …”  (Ezekiel 33:11) 

“Look! I tell you, now is `the well-accepted time';

now is `The Day of Salvation'."

(2 Corinthians 6:2)

HOW TO BE SAVED ?

My dear reader, I speak from my heart. I want you and all my readers to be saved, and to be sure of their salvation. A great number of my readers can say, very definitely, "I know I am saved, by the grace of God!" But others cannot say with any certainty, "I'm saved!"

It stands to reason that if you do not know you are saved, you will not be able to tell anyone else how to be saved.

There is not one of us who does not need salvation. We must be saved ...

*  from the penalty of our sin.

*  from the coming reign of Antichrist and the Tribulation.

*  from eternal Hell.

If you get saved from the first, you will also be saved from the other two.  Let us start with our own hearts, which Scripture says is deceitful and desperately wicked. We must receive a new heart, a new life. And God is willing and able to give us this new heart as He promised:

"I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; and I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My laws, and you will guard My judgments, and do them."  (Ezekiel 36:26-27)

Salvation is God's work in us, but we must come to Him, just as we are, and place our faith in Him.

"For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith - and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God." (Ephesians 2:8)

God will do the saving, but we must call upon the Lord.

"For whoever will call upon the Name of Y'SHUA THE LORD will be saved."  (Romans 10:13)

Say you have a serious illness, and there is a physician who can cure you. What do you do? You must go to that doctor and ask him, or at least you must ring and call the doctor to your bedside. It is no use lying on your bed and saying, "I want to be cured, but I don't need a doctor!" Surely you will not say, "I'll take the risk that I will get over this somehow. But I'm not going to trust a doctor."

Well that is exactly what many people say when it comes to Salvation - "I'll take the risk ... and I'll hope I will be okay."  That is the surest way to be lost!

It is not a complex, mighty work that God has asked us to perform. He hasn't asked you to climb Mt. Everest, or to bathe seven times in the Jordan River, or to build a gold-plated temple in His honour. He hasn't asked you to shave off your hair and give it to Him. He has not asked you to pay a certain amount of money, or to perform a minimum number of good works. He has not even demanded that you read the whole Bible, cover to cover, or that you memorize at least, "the Lord's Prayer."

No! He has asked you to simply call to Him in faith, and receive Y'shua, Jesus, as your personal Saviour.

But many people imagine that they must first tidy up their act; that they must first conquer their sins, and then come to God for acceptance.

The Lord Jesus said, "I did not come to call the righteous but sinners to repentance." (Luke 5:32)

If you are a sinner, then the Master is calling you. Repentance is turning to Him. He will forgive our sins and rectify our lives when we call upon Him and BELIEVE in Him. When we do that, He will make us new. We can't change our lives, but He will change us if we simply trust in Him.

"Therefore if anyone is in Christ, the Messiah, he is a new creation; the old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new "  (2 Corinthians 5:17)

To make it very simple, here are Seven Scriptural Steps we must take to be saved.

1   Repent. This means to turn around from your present direction and come to the Saviour.

"I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you will all likewise perish." (Luke 13:3)

2   Pray to the Father, and confess that you are a sinner and need Him. "Lord, be merciful to me, a sinner."

"If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous and will forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness." (1 John 1:9)

3   Believe in Jesus Christ, and ask Him to come into your life, to be your personal Saviour and Master. He is the appointed Saviour - the One who died on the Cross to pay the penalty of our sins.

"But God demonstrates His own love for us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ - the Messiah -died for us." (Romans 5:8)

"Surely He has taken up our griefs, and carried our sorrows; yet we ourselves esteemed Him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But He was wounded - pierced through - for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed. All of us like sheep have gone astray. Each of us has turned to his own way, but YHWH has caused the iniquity of us all to fall on Him."  (Isaiah 53:4-6)

"For YHWH, the Almighty God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son (Y’shua/Jesus), so that whoever believes and trusts in Him, should not perish, but have eternal life."  (John 3:16)

"And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men, by which we must be saved." (Acts 4:12)

4   Trust the Lord to save you.

"Trust in YHWH with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight. Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear YHWH and turn away from evil." (Proverbs 3:5-7)

"Commit your way to YHWH — the LORD God! Trust also in Him, and He will do it." (Psalm 37:5)

5. Thank the Saviour, Y’shua/Jesus, for dying for you, for providing for your forgiveness and salvation. Thank Him for hearing your prayer, and for answering - for saving you.

6. Commit yourself fully to the Lord, to be His disciple from this day onwards.

"Y'shua said to His disciples, 'If anyone would come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me." (Matthew 16:24)

7. Confess the Lord Jesus publicly as your Saviour.

'"Everyone, therefore, who shall confess Me before men, him I shall also confess before My Father who is in heaven'." (Matthew 10:32)

"That if you confess with your mouth Y'shua as Master and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you shall be saved." (Romans 10:9)

These are the seven simple steps, and you can take them today. To put it in one simple sentence ...

"Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved." (Acts 16:31)

This will be the greatest decision of your life - to come to the Saviour and follow Him as your Master. Why don't you pray to Him right now? The following prayer may help you to express your faith in the Saviour.

DECISION PRAYER

Heavenly Father,

I come to You just as I am, a sinner, and confess that I need Your salvation. I need to be saved from my sins, from the coming Antichrist, and from Hell. Oh Lord, be merciful to me, a sinner.

I believe that Y'shua (Jesus) is the Messiah, and that He died on the cross, paying the penalty of my sins, and that He rose again from the dead. So I ask You, in His Name, Father, to forgive all my sins, and to make my life anew.

Lord Jesus, please come into my life right now, and be my Saviour and Master. I give myself to You, and by Your grace, I will follow You, and live for You from this day on. Help me now, Master, to confess You as my Saviour before my friends and family.

Thank You for hearing my prayer. Thank You for answering, thank You for saving me. Thank You, Father.  I pray in Y'shua's Name.  Amen.

       Signed   …………………….…………….     Date  …………….  

 

 

Friend, if this is your sincere prayer, and today you have made your decision to receive Y'shua the Messiah as your Saviour, will you write to me at one of the MRC addresses inside our front cover, so that we can pray for you, and send you some literature to help you in your new life.                                                                                

      - Don Stanton

 

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