Current Events

A European Army?

The EUobserver wrote on December 1:

“After its mission overseeing elections in Congo, EU troops are well on their way to being able to work as a common EU army, according to their French general. ‘I am very satisfied because I believe that we have a very well-functioning unit,’ said general Christian Damay… ‘Now we really have the beginning of a European army.’

“Discussions about creating a European army are not new, with Polish President Lech Kaczynski recently suggesting there should be a multinational EU army of 100,000 troops to support NATO missions… General Damay’s words come just as EU troops are packing their bags to leave Congo after having been in the country to monitor elections for four months–their mandate expired yesterday (30 November)… The 1,400-strong Congo mission has been held up as a shining example of a successful peacekeeping mission…”

According to Biblical prophecy, a powerful European army is going to exist very soon. For more information, please read our free booklet, “Europe in Prophecy.”

How Propaganda Is to Be Used to Brainwash the British

England’s Daily Mail wrote on December 3:

“A multi-million pound propaganda war to force the British people to love the European Union and Brussels bureaucrats is to be launched by Tony Blair as part of his legacy as Prime Minister, it has been revealed… Details of the plan, obtained by The Mail on Sunday, show how the Prime Minister is so frustrated at his failure to persuade voters that the EU is a good thing, he is to spend a fortune from public funds in a final attempt to brainwash them before he resigns next year. They include banning Ministers and officials from referring to unpopular EU institutions like the European Commission, places such as Brussels and Strasbourg, the euro currency, terms like ‘Eurocrat’ and ‘EU directive’ and controversial policies such as the Common Agricultural Policy and the EU constitution. Instead they have been ordered to try to promote the ‘EU brand’ by linking to popular European events and institutions such as the Eurovision song contest, the Cannes Film Festival and the UEFA soccer organisation that runs the Champions League tournament–even though none of them has anything to do with the EU.”

In spite of these incredible alleged attempts by the British government to popularize the EU among British voters, Bible prophecy strongly indicates that Great Britain will ultimately not be a part of the EU. For more information, please read our free booklet, “The Fall and Rise of Britain and America.”

Afghanistan Isn’t Working, Either…

Sometimes, we hear politicians make the claim that Iraq isn’t working because the USA moved alone, without European support, while Afghanistan is working, as the USA acted in collaboration with Europe and many additional allies. Not so!!! Afghanistan isn’t working either–and has not been for a long time.

Der Spiegel Online wrote on December 3:

“The regeneration of the Taliban — which has retaken control of parts of southern Afghanistan — is no longer fresh news to anyone. But are the insurgent forces preparing to launch a series of attacks on the capital city of Kabul, which is home to peacekeeping troops, the Afghan government and non-government organizations that are helping to rebuild the war-torn country? The leadership of Germany’s military, the Bundeswehr, fear that Taliban attacks on the Afghanistan capital of Kabul will likely increase in the coming months. According to a classified report on the state of Afghanistan obtained by SPIEGEL, ‘militant opposition forces’ have made it clear that they will focus fighting during the winter ‘on the country’s largest cities.’ “The security situation has already ‘visibly deteriorated’ in two districts located just 10 kilometers from Kabul’s city limits — to the point that Afghan security forces don’t even dare to patrol the streets at night. The report warned that Taliban fighters could use the district as ‘gateways’ to Kabul and also as [a] place where they could stage future attacks. According to the report, Taliban fighters are smuggled into the districts in small ‘groups of up to eight men,’ and they often blend in with the population by staying in the homes of local residents for several days at a time.

“In a separate development, NATO troops fired on civilians after a suicide car bomb exploded next to their convoy on Sunday. The suicide blast in Kandahar, southern Afghanistan, killed two civilians and injured ten others, including three British soldiers. NATO spokesman Maj. Luke Knittig said that as the patrol was driving away from the scene they saw a car they feared might contain a second suicide bomber. At least one civilian was killed and nine were injured during the ensuing shooting.”

Hezbollah Used Civilians as Human Shields

USA Today reported on December 6:

“An Israeli think tank with strong links to the military released videos and testimony Tuesday it said proved Hezbollah guerrillas used civilians as human shields during last summer’s war in Lebanon. The report’s authors hoped the revelations would challenge allegations that Israel committed war crimes when it attacked residential areas during the war. Although no formal war crimes charges have been filed against either side, Israel has taken the brunt of international criticism. Israel is especially sensitive about the possibility of legal action because of previous lawsuits and indictments abroad against Israeli leaders and military officers.

“The 300-page report, compiled by a military intelligence expert who has an office in the Defense Ministry in Tel Aviv, argues that Lebanese government and media reports of the number of civilian dead in Lebanon were overblown. More than 850 Lebanese, most of them civilians, were killed in Israeli airstrikes and artillery attacks during the 34-day war, which began after Hezbollah guerrillas captured two Israeli soldiers in a cross-border raid. The guerrillas bombarded northern Israel with nearly 4,000 rockets, killing 39 civilians. Also, 120 soldiers were killed in the violence. Israel says its attacks against Hezbollah targets in populated areas did not violate international law.

“The report, first released to The New York Times, said Hezbollah operated from civilian areas to deter the Israeli military and gain a propaganda advantage if an Israeli counterattack caused civilian casualties. Guerrillas stashed weapons in hundreds of private homes and mosques, had missile transports closely follow ambulances and fired rockets near U.N. monitoring posts, the report said.”

Chavez’ Re-election Poses Threat to the USA

MSNBC wrote on December 3:

“Emboldened by a resounding re-election, President Hugo Chavez pledged to shake up Venezuela with a more radical version of socialism and forge a wider front against the United States in Latin America… Chavez has posed a growing challenge to the United States while leading a widening bloc of Latin American leftists, influencing elections across the region, and allying himself with U.S. opponents like Iran and Syria.”The United States remains the top buyer of Venezuelan oil, but Chavez has sought to gradually diversify to new clients in Latin America and as far away as China… Venezuela is the world’s fifth largest oil exporter and soaring oil prices have made it the continent’s fastest-growing economy–a fact that some voters said helped tilt them toward Chavez… The president insists he is a democrat and will continue to respect private property–though he has boosted state control over the oil industry and has said he might nationalize utilities.”

Inevitable War Between Somalia, Islam, Ethiopia and Eritrea?

The Associated Press reported on December 5, 2006:

“Somalia’s troops are ready for an imminent and inevitable war with the Islamic militia that has taken over much of the country and surrounded the internationally backed government, the country’s prime minister [Ali Gedi] said… The Islamic movement has overrun much of Somalia, including the capital, in recent months, increasingly sidelining the weak government and vowing to bring Islamic law to the whole country… The United States has said the Islamic movement has links to al-Qaida, an accusation Islamic leaders have repeatedly denied… Gedi said the Islamic forces included more than 3,000 foreign fighters…

“A confidential U.N. report recently obtained by The Associated Press said there were up to 8,000 Ethiopian troops in the country supporting the government. Ethiopia’s parliament has authorized military action if attacked by the Islamic movement, which has declared holy war on Ethiopia over its troop incursions. The U.N. report said Ethiopia’s regional rival, Eritrea, had 2,000 troops in the country backing the Islamic movement, raising the specter of Eritrea and Ethiopia fighting a proxy war in Somalia… The United States has issued a travel advisory for Somalia’s neighbors Kenya and Ethiopia, warning that extremists in Somalia could launch suicide attacks in those countries.”

Terrible Disaster in the Philippines

AFP reported on December 2:

“Rescuers have arrived in this devastated Philippines city as officials warned there would be few survivors from giant mudslides which swept away entire villages, killing hundreds. Military and civilian emergency workers delayed by typhoon Durian, which triggered the mudflows on Thursday, flew in at first light with the toll already at 469 dead or missing [By now, the death toll has been estimated as exceeding at least 1,500]… Many buildings in Legaspi, capital of the eastern Bicol region, were damaged or demolished, while villages on the slopes of the scenic Mayon volcano had been reduced to just a few sticks…

“The disaster comes after an emergency in August, when 30,000 people were evacuated fearing Mayon would erupt before returning in September… The Philippines is also recovering from the impact of typhoon Cimaron, the strongest cyclone to hit the nation in more than 10 years, which left 38 dead or missing in late October… The floods have killed at least 120 people and displaced around 300,000 since unusually heavy rains started to pound the country in October.”

The IRS vs. Pasadena Church

On November 16, the Los Angeles Times published extended excerpts from a controversial sermon at Pasadena’s “All Saints Episcopal Church,” which was delivered at the eve of national elections in 2004, prompting the IRS to accuse the church of politically intervening. The paper asked the question: “But did [the controversial] speech violate federal laws? The answer, mostly likely to come from the courts, hinges on how one defines campaigning and interprets [the pastor’s] remarks.”

When reading the excerpts from the sermon, as set forth below, the FUNDAMENTAL PROBLEM WITH THE SERMON becomes very clear: It was given in preparation of a vote for a political candidate or political party. This is the sad conclusion to be gleaned from the sermon which, otherwise, includes many valuable thoughts to consider. Whether such “political involvement” is enough to deny the church tax exemption is a different matter. However, we must stress that getting involved in the politics of this world and VOTING for a particular political candidate or party in governmental elections VIOLATES the Biblical principle of keeping ourselves separate from this world. As a consequence, members of the Church of the Eternal God and its corporate affiliates refuse to participate in governmental elections and to vote for a particular political candidate or political party.

The LA Times quoted the sermon speaker as follows:

“Good people of profound faith will be for either George Bush or John Kerry for reasons deeply rooted in their faith. I want you to hear me on this. Yet I want to say as clearly as I can how I see Jesus impacting your vote and mine. Both Sen. Kerry and President Bush are devout Christians–one a Roman Catholic and the other a Methodist. Against the teachings of Jesus, listen in as Kerry and Bush debate three hugely important issues this morning: ending war and violence, eliminating poverty and holding tenaciously to hope… I believe Jesus would say to Bush and Kerry: ‘War is itself the most extreme form of terrorism. President Bush, you have not made dramatically clear what have been the human consequences of the war in Iraq. More than 1,100 U.S. soldiers dead, 8,000 wounded–some disabled for life–and now the latest figures say 100,000 Iraqi fighters, women and children are dead… Your fundamental premise for the massive violence of this war is that it is the proper response to the terrorist attack that took place Sept. 11, 2001. But remember: The killing of innocent people to achieve some desired goal is morally repudiated by anyone claiming to follow me as their savior and guide.’

“Jesus, looking at the United States, the most powerful nation in the history of civilization, disavows any path that affirms grief must lead to war; Jesus refuses to accept the violence of war as the necessary consequences of our tragic losses on Sept. 11. Maybe you are calling Jesus naive, but he points us to the truest reality in the universe: ‘Mercy brings mercy and revenge brings revenge. Tragically, your world refuses to learn this truth even after so many bitter experiences in every part of the world. Mercy brings mercy. Revenge brings revenge.’

“How Jesus mourns the deaths of those 3,000 people killed on Sept. 11. But Jesus also mourns the death, devastation and loss in Afghanistan and Iraq and Sudan and Israel/Palestine and in so many other parts of the world. They too are part of God’s precious human family… Jesus would say to us: ‘Yes, mourn the deaths of those closest to you who have died; yet it is troublesome that you in America could get so caught up in the tragedy of Sept. 11 without ever noticing all my children who have been blown apart by this war, and the 30,000 children under 5 years of age across the globe who die every day of malnutrition and hunger. My heart can hardly bear it.’

“Jesus confronts both Sen. Kerry and President Bush: ‘I will tell you what I think of your war. The sin at the heart of this war against Iraq is your belief that an American life is of more value than an Iraqi life. That an American child is more precious than an Iraqi baby. God loathes war. At the time of the trauma of Sept. 11 you did not have to declare war. You could have said to the American people and the world: ‘We will respond but not in kind. We will not seek to avenge the death of innocent Americans by the death of innocent victims elsewhere, lest we become what we abhor.’ Jesus continues: ‘Mr. President, your doctrine of preemptive war is a failed doctrine. Forcibly changing the regime of an enemy that posed no imminent threat has led to disaster. It will take years for the widely felt hostility in Iraq and around the world to ebb. The consequences of arrogance, accompanied by certitude that the world’s most powerful military can cure all ills, should be burned into America’s memory forever. President Bush, Sen. Kerry, will you save us from all this suffering? But God’s only hands are yours and all who call upon my name. In the midst of great suffering, I call out to you: “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God.”‘

“Jesus turns to President Bush again with deep sadness. ‘Is what I hear really true? Do you really mean that you want to end a decade-old ban on developing nuclear battlefield weapons, as well as endorsing the creation of a nuclear “bunker-blaster” bomb? Are you really going to resume nuclear testing? That is sheer insanity. This only encourages nations to build their nuclear arsenal in defense against you. This is morally indefensible.’ Jesus grows more insistent. ‘The development of battlefield nuclear weapons and threatening their use against “rogue” nations and willing to strike first is a dangerous change of policy. Talk of winnable nuclear war is the greatest illusion. I am indignant when I hear people in your government saying a nuclear war could end for anyone as a victory.’

“Everything I know about Jesus would have him uttering those words. From my own study, prayer, reflection and dialogue, I say that nuclear war is the enemy… The political reality that nuclear war still remains an option for America and other countries is the paramount horror of modern existence. The nuclear bomb is the most outright evil thing that human beings ever created. What does it say about the moral values of a nation that puts its security in nuclear weapons that are morally outrageous? I believe that Jesus calls us to be nuclear abolitionists through the political process. ‘Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God.’ When you go to the polls on Nov. 2, vote all your values. Jesus places on your heart this question: Who is to be trusted as the world’s chief peacemaker?”

Papal Authority Uncompromised

AFP reported on December 1:

“Pope Benedict XVI wrapped up a momentous visit to Turkey, in which he reached out to Muslims and the Orthodox Church while standing firm on key issues such as papal authority and Europe’s Christian roots… Adding drama to diplomacy, the 79-year-old pope made a stunning conciliatory gesture on Thursday when he assumed an attitude of Muslim prayer while facing Mecca in Istanbul’s Blue Mosque… he remained steadfast on a major point of disagreement — papal authority — when he stressed the Vatican’s ‘universal’ role.”

Are We To Observe Sunday?

CNA wrote on December 1:

“Pope Benedict XVI has sent a message to Cardinal Francis Arinze ahead of the Congregation for Divine Worship’s study day on the Sunday Mass… ‘Sundays,’ writes the Pope, ‘remain the fundamental seedbed and the primordial nucleus of the liturgical year… For the first Christians, participation in Sunday celebrations was the natural expression of their belonging to Christ, of their communion with His mystical Body, in joyous expectation of His glorious return. Today… it is more than ever necessary to reiterate the sacred nature of the Lord’s day and the need to participate in Sunday Mass.

“‘The cultural context in which we live, often marked by religious indifference and secularism that obscure the horizon of transcendence, must not cause us to forget that the People of God who came into being with the events of Easter must return [to those events] as an inexhaustible spring, in order to better understand … their own identity and the reasons for their existence. Sunday was not chosen by the Christian community… rather by the Apostles, indeed by Christ Himself Who on that day, “the first day of the week,” arose and appeared before the disciples. … Each Sunday celebration of the Eucharist enacts the sanctification of Christian people.’ Benedict XVI closed his message by expressing the hope that the study day ‘may help to recover the Christian meaning of Sunday in … the life of all believers.'”

But is any or all of this true? Did the early Apostles and the early Christians celebrate Sunday or Easter? Did Jesus Christ rise from the dead on Sunday morning? If you don’t know the answers to these vital questions, then the truth WILL surprise you. It might actually CHANGE your life!

To learn more, please read our free booklets, “Jesus Christ–a Great Mystery,”“Don’t Keep Christmas,” and “God’s Commanded Holy Days.”

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