Islamist Militant Group Threatens Nigeria’s “Stability”
CNN reported on November 7:
“An Islamic militant group responsible for a wave of suicide attacks, car bombs, assassinations and assaults across northeastern Nigeria threatens the stability of the country… Boko Haram means ‘Western education is a sin.’ Depending on the faction, the group’s ambitions range from the stricter enforcement of Sharia law — which is derived from the Koran as the ‘word of God’ — across the predominantly Muslim north of Nigeria, to the total destruction of the Nigerian state and its government…
“Boko Haram’s grievances remain local, but it has proven itself capable and willing to attack international institutions–such as the United Nations–on Nigerian soil to achieve their aims… Although the northern populace mostly abhors the violence, there is considerable local sympathy and support for stricter Sharia law, seen by many as the only way to put an end to what is widely regarded as a corrupt and inept government.
“Northern Nigeria has some of the worst human development indicators in the world despite the country’s being the fifth largest oil exporter to the United States. Hundreds of billions of dollars have been stolen by a succession of corrupt governments. As the attacks continue and the violence spreads from its base in the northeast, Boko Haram is winning perhaps its most important battle: making Nigerians question what most agree is the cause of the problem, their government.”
Deutsche Welle added on November 7:
“Meanwhile, representatives of the group say that its fighters are being trained in Somalia by the al-Shabab militant group, which reputedly has close ties to al Qaeda. Many observers of the Islamist scene in Nigeria believe such a scenario is at least plausible.”
For more information on the frightening rise of Islamist groups, please view our StandingWatch program, “The Arab Spring—a Nightmare?”
Attack on Israel Increasingly Likely… Russia and France Warn of Consequences
The Telegraph wrote on November 7:
“Russia’s foreign minister Sergei Lavov has warned that a military strike on Iran would be a ‘very serious mistake’ with ‘unpredictable consequences’, after Israel’s president Shimon Peres said that an attack was increasingly likely… Mr Peres said that ‘the possibility of a military attack against Iran is now closer to being applied than the application of a diplomatic option’. ‘We must stay calm and resist pressure so that we can consider every alternative,’ he added…
“Moscow, the closest thing Iran has to a big power ally, is deeply opposed to any military action against the Islamic republic… A raid on Iran’s nuclear facilities would be likely to provoke Tehran into disruptive retaliatory measures in the Gulf that would sever shipping routes and disrupt the flow of oil and gas to export markets.
“Some analysts have said it could backfire and bolster the theocratic regime to the detriment of the pro-democracy movement, and spawn terror attacks on Israeli and US targets around the world.”
The EUobserver added on November 7:
“France and Russia have in separate statements warned that a US or Israeli strike against Iran’s alleged nuclear weapons facilities could destabilise the Middle East… French foreign minister Alain Juppe said the UN and EU should intensify sanctions instead of taking the military option… Juppe added that France would help defend Israel if a regional conflict breaks out, however: ‘I hope it doesn’t come to that … [But] if Israel is attacked, France would stand by its side.’”
“A contact in the European External Action Service told EUobserver that Israel and the US will not consult with EU structures if they go ahead. ‘The first that we will hear about it is when we see bombs falling on CNN,’ the source said.”
The Daily Mail wrote on November 10:
“Israel will launch military action to prevent Iran developing a nuclear weapon as soon as Christmas, intelligence chiefs have warned… The International Atomic Energy Agency found that Iran is developing a nuclear test facility, nuclear detonators and computer modelling for a nuclear warhead that would fit on an existing missile.
“Sources say the understanding at the top of the British Government is that Israel will attempt to strike against the nuclear sites ‘sooner rather than later’ – with logistical support from the U.S… Officials believe President Barack Obama would have to support the Israelis or risk losing vital Jewish-American support in the next presidential election.”
The Local wrote on November 9:
“Germany and its allies have angrily lashed out against Iran after the UN nuclear watchdog published its harshest report yet on Tehran’s nuclear programme, saying it had sought to build atomic warheads… The European Union said the report ‘seriously aggravate[s]’ existing concerns over a military dimension in Tehran’s nuclear programme. ‘Overall these findings strongly indicate the existence of a full fledged nuclear weapons development programme in Iran,’ said Maja Kocijancic, spokeswoman for EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton.”
As we have stated for years, Israel might very well attack Iran, with or even without American or British help. An attack on Iran would have devastating consequences, to be sure, and it might set the entire Middle East on fire, which could even result in European involvement and intervention.
The statement by the French foreign minister is telling in that France would help Israel if it is attacked, but not necessarily vice versa, and that Israel (and the USA) might go about this alone, without first notifying their European allies. This is also interesting in light of the next article.
Anti-Netanyahu Comments by Sarkozy and Obama
Fox News reported on November 8:
“French President Nicolas Sarkozy, who has labored to improve French relations with Israel, said he ‘can’t stand’ Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and called him a liar in a chat with President Barack Obama. The conversation between Sarkozy and Obama was overheard by reporters last week at the Group of 20 summit in southern France, via headsets that were to be used for simultaneous translation of an upcoming news conference… According to the French interpreter, Obama responded, ‘You are sick of him, but I have to work with him every day’…
“The overheard remarks by Sarkozy and Obama were prominently covered in Israel, where Sarkozy — whose maternal grandfather was Jewish — is widely perceived as a friend… Israel has had a fraught up-and-down relationship with France. The country was an early supporter of the Jewish state, selling it arms and planes and helping it develop a nuclear reactor. But the relationship soured under Charles de Gaulle, perceived as having abandoned Israel before the 1967 war…
“Netanyahu, meanwhile, is a controversial figure even at home. He is widely seen as divisive… The often blunt Sarkozy has shown little patience with Israeli hard-liners, and two years ago urged Netanyahu to fire his outspoken foreign minister, Avigdor Lieberman… France… surprised Washington and other observers by voting last week in favor of membership for Palestine in UNESCO, the U.N. cultural and educational agency.”
Big Increase in Earthquake Activity in Oklahoma and Arkansas
The Associated Press reported on November 6:
“The magnitude 5.6 earthquake and its aftershocks still had residents rattled Sunday. No injuries were reported… But the weekend earthquakes were among the strongest yet in a state that has seen a dramatic, unexplained increase in seismic activity. Oklahoma typically had about 50 earthquakes a year until 2009. Then the number spiked, and 1,047 quakes shook the state last year…
“Scientists say they have no explanation for the quakes. They happened along an ancient fault, although it’s not clear yet whether shifting along the fault is what caused them… One reason earthquakes are hard to predict in Oklahoma is that the state sits over a series of smaller ancient faults, rather than a major fault, such as California’s San Andreas Fault…
“Arkansas also has seen a big increase in earthquake activity, which residents have blamed on injection wells… There are 181 injection wells in the Oklahoma county where most of the weekend earthquakes happened… But natural gas companies claim there is no proof of a connection between injection wells and earthquakes, and a study released earlier this year by an Oklahoma Geological Survey seismologist seems to back that up…
“Most Oklahoma residents still see earthquakes as anomalies in a state more often damaged by tornadoes.”
It is interesting that scientists don’t know why those earthquakes are happening. The Bible has predicted a long time ago that in these end times, we will hear more and more about increasing earthquake activities here and there—in diverse places.
Christian Politics Create Unholy Alliances
On November 7, USA Today published an article by David P. Gushee, professor of Christian ethics. The following was stated:
“Republican presidential candidates are trolling for conservative Christian votes. Christian political organizers are trolling for Republican candidates’ attention… The Democrats, too, will make some effort to join this game, as they did in the 2008 cycle… As an American and also as an evangelical Christian, I can hardly bear to watch this nightmare unfolding all over again. It’s bad for America. It’s bad for Christianity…
“Politicians continue to use and abuse the language and symbols of Christian faith in order to win political support. They speak of God, Jesus, Christian faith and Christian values. They bow their heads in prayer at a million chicken dinners. Then Christian voters — perhaps flattered, perhaps reassured — think that these evocations of holy Christian symbols and terms actually mean something…
“It used to be that only Protestants could play the religious tribalism card in the USA. But that changed as conservative Protestants and Catholics banded together over social issues (such as abortion and same-sex marriage)… Some conservative Christians are tempted to look for the candidate who is (or appears to be) most clearly a member of their religious-political tribe… These voters check off the Christian box and look no further, just as some liberals check off a candidate’s ‘pro-choice’ or ‘pro-union’ box and do the same.
“It’s not just the politicians’ fault. If church leaders and rank-and-file Christians were not susceptible to these appeals, they would not work… This version of Christian politics is inherently corrupting to Christian faith, ethics and witness. It encourages politicians to take God’s name in vain, and to do so routinely. (That would be a violation of the Ten Commandments, if Christians still cared about such things.) It tempts church leaders to abuse their offices and abandon their core vocations as they entangle themselves with politics. It confuses the message of Christianity with that of the politician of the moment… It drives many away from God altogether.”
Politics and religion don’t mix, and they have produced nothing but harm. One may only think of the abominable inquisition. A true Christian is a foreigner and alien on this earth. He is an ambassador of Christ. He will not get involved in politics, and he will not vote in governmental elections. For more information, please read our Q&As on the issue. https://www.eternalgod.org/qa/2259 and https://www.eternalgod.org/qa/2206
Religious Freedom under Attack in America
Zenit wrote on November 4:
“The sense of religious liberty is being lost in America, warned Archbishop José H. Gomez in a recent article… [He] noted that both courts and government agencies are increasingly overriding conscience rights when other rights or liberties are considered to be more important… Archbishop Timothy Dolan… explained that religious freedom ‘in its many and varied applications for Christians and people of faith, is now increasingly and in unprecedented ways under assault in America.’…
“Federal Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) regulations… oblige all private health insurance plans to cover contraception and sterilization. This will oblige church employers to sponsor and pay for services they oppose… The Justice Department recently attacked what is known as ‘ministerial exception,’ a constitutional doctrine long accepted by courts that allows churches to make employment decisions concerning persons working in a ministerial capacity…
“Earlier this year a 2008 rule that granted conscience protection to health care providers who opposed participating in abortion and sterilization was mostly rescinded… Effectively, what will happen is that church organizations will be forbidden to practice what they preach…
“Earlier this year Illinois’s Department of Children and Family Services told the state’s four Catholic dioceses that it would not renew their contracts for foster care and adoption services because they were not prepared to include same-sex couples among their clients. The changed situation is a result of the ironically-named Illinois Religious Freedom Protection and Civil Union Act, that came into force on July 1.The new law legalized civil unions for homosexual couples without protecting religious organizations…
“The Washington, D.C., Office of Human Rights is now investigating a complaint that the city’s Catholic University of America is violating the human rights of Muslim students. In his complaint John Banzhaf, a law professor at George Washington University Law School, alleged that by not providing them with rooms without Christian symbols the university is offending Muslim students… It seems that in an increasingly secularized society tolerance is to be extended to all, except churches and believers who want to live by their beliefs.”
Christ promised His true followers persecution for righteousness’ sake, and it should therefore be no surprise that it will become more and more difficult for converted Christians to stand up for their religious convictions, given the fact that the entire world—including the USA, Canada and Great Britain—is being ruled by Satan the devil who is seeking the destruction of the followers of God.
Abortions in the USA an Outcry
On November 6, USA Today published the following article by Gualberto Garcia Jones, who is a director of, and legal analyst for, Personhood USA, a group that opposes abortion and seeks to establish that the legal definition of “person” begins at fertilization:
“Increasingly, the American people are being treated paternalistically by a government, media and public sector elite that stands in direct opposition to our traditional American values… No greater example exists of this abuse of raw judicial power than Roe v. Wade, a decision by seven unelected men to impose abortion on all 50 states… To date, 55 million innocent human beings have been killed by abortion…”
Abortion is murder. Please read our free booklet, “Are You Already Born Again?”
Sharp Deterioration in EU-Ukraine Relations
The Euobserver wrote on November 7:
“Ukrainian negotiators have said there is no need to initial an EU trade and association pact at a summit in Kiev in December as previously planned… The change of plan comes amid Ukrainian complaints that the EU is unwilling to include a clear promise on future accession in the pact… The pre-summit manoeuvring comes amid a sharp deterioration in EU-Ukraine relations in recent weeks.
“EU leaders snubbed President Viktor Yanukovych last month by cancelling a meeting in Brussels after he jailed his political rival, Yulia Tymoshenko. His tough line on accession could be a pretext to bin the EU pact, freeing him to consolidate power at home and to focus on Ukraine-Russia relations instead. The new line on initialing could also be a face-saving exercise in case the EU side pulls back from the deal because of the Tymoshenko problem.”
Greece’s New Prime Minister
The Associated Press reported on November 10:
“Senior banker Lucas Papademos was named Thursday to be the new prime minister of an interim Greek unity government that seeks to cement a new European debt deal and stave off national bankruptcy. Papademos, who was named after four tortuous days of power-sharing talks, immediately called for unity and promised to seek cross-party cooperation to keep Greece firmly in the 17-nation eurozone.
“The 64-year-old former vice president of the European Central Bank was chosen to lead a temporary government… that will operate until early elections, tentatively set for February. He replaces outgoing Prime Minister George Papandreou… [Papademos] insisted Greece must defend its euro membership. ‘The participation of our country in the eurozone is a guarantee for the country’s monetary stability. It is a driver of financial prosperity,’ Papademos said. ‘And our country’s participation [in] the eurozone, despite the difficulties that arise, will facilitate the adjustment of the economy and its development.’”
More Europe, Not Less Europe
Reuters wrote on November 9:
“Merkel said Europe’s plight was now so ‘unpleasant’ that deep structural reforms were needed quickly, warning the rest of the world would not wait. ‘That will mean more Europe, not less Europe,’ she told a conference in Berlin.
“She called for changes in EU treaties… ‘It is time for a breakthrough to a new Europe,’ Merkel said… Italy has replaced Greece at the center of the euro zone debt crisis and is on the cusp of requiring a bailout that Europe cannot afford to give… Unlike Greece, an Italian default would threaten the entire euro project. EU treaty changes could take a year or more. Rome does not have that much time…”
Italy’s Worries—Berlusconi Must Go
Der Spiegel Online wrote on November 11:
“With the euro zone’s debt crisis now having enveloped Italy, many have begun wondering what the future European Union might look like. Berlin has denied reports of a potential euro-zone breakup, but many see the emergence of a two-speed Europe. First, though, Berlusconi must go… the European Union… has said that a recession in the euro zone has become a distinct possibility… the euro zone continues to focus more on its survival than on economic growth…
“Citing EU sources, Reuters reported on Wednesday that German and French officials had met to discuss a splitting up of the euro zone… Berlin was concerned enough to issue a swift denial. ‘The German government is most definitely not pursuing such plans,’ said Chancellor Angela Merkel’s spokesman, Steffen Seibert, on Thursday. ‘On the contrary, our policies are aimed at stabilizing the euro zone in its entirety and attacking the root of its problems.’
“In a Wednesday evening speech in Berlin, European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso likewise felt compelled to strongly condemn any moves aimed at splitting the common currency zone. ‘There cannot be peace and prosperity in the north or in the west of Europe if there is no peace and prosperity in the south or in the east,’ he said…
“On Tuesday, Sarkozy… pushed hard for a two-speed Europe, one made up of a 17-member, euro-zone core surrounded by a looser grouping of the 10 non-euro members… On Thursday, Sarkozy received support for his vision from an unexpected source: former German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer…
“Concerns about the ultimate survival of the European Union as currently constituted and, particularly, the euro zone, have been heightened this week by the dismal situation in Italy, with interest rates on the country’s sovereign bonds well above the 7 percent threshold that analysts say makes long-term borrowing unsustainable. Cause for particular worry is that the size of Italy’s economy, the euro zone’s third largest, makes it too large to bail out…
“Italian President Giorgio Napolitano moved on Wednesday to provide the kind of political clarity that… the markets are demanding. He said that reform measures would be pushed through parliament within a matter of days… Such a move would pave the way for rapidly creating a new government and forgoing weeks or even months of uncertainty. Still, observers remain wary as to whether the departure of Berlusconi, who had seemed reluctant — or unable — to pursue needed economic reform in recent years, will mark a turnaround for the country.”
As we have said, the euro is here to stay. However, tremendous changes and developments are and will be occurring in Europe, which will lead to the emergence of the prophesied ten nations or groups of nations, which will give their power and authority to the “beast”—a charismatic political leader who will still have to manifest himself on the world scene.
Britain Is Becoming More and More Isolated
The Sunday Telegraph wrote on November 6:
“Britain will be marooned inside a ‘permanent minority’ in European Union decision making in just three years’ times after rule changes kick in on member states’ voting powers, according to a new report. The document seen by The Sunday Telegraph shows that under changes already agreed to in the Lisbon Treaty, eurozone countries voting as a ‘caucus’ will have a permanent in-built majority in the EU’s Council of Ministers – its main decision-making body – from November 2014.
“Britain will be unable to block a plethora of new laws even if it joins together with other countries not in the eurozone – risking severe damage… The rule changes will virtually ensure that the EU becomes a ‘two speed’ operation with Britain in the slow lane – even without the greater ‘fiscal integration’ expected inside the eurozone as its 17 countries bring their tax and spending affairs closer together…
“The report comes amid further evidence that Britain is becoming more and more isolated as core EU nations develop closer links with each other… The eurozone as a whole already has 66 per cent of votes on its own, giving it a permanent inbuilt majority from November 2014 if it votes as a caucus. There are potential dispensations for countries to request individual votes are taken under the current system after 2014 – but this opt-out runs out in November 2017.”
As we have proclaimed for many years, it is very unlikely that Great Britain will be a part of the final configuration of the United States of Europe, which will consist of ten core nations or groups of nations.