Current Events

“Obama Should Pack His Bags and Leave”

The German mass tabloid Bild Online wrote on November 6:

“It would be best if [Obama] would pack his bags, leave the White House and move back to Chicago. What has gone so terribly wrong for the political Messiah? In one word: Everything! Obama did not make the world better, but he made it less American.

“Those who want to grasp dictatorial power are encouraged by his weakness. Those who want to live in freedom after the American example feel betrayed he wanted to be a good friend of the world, and he antagonized his most important allies from Berlin to Jerusalem. The only good news: The Obama tragedy will be over in 806 days. Too bad it is not over sooner.”

Obama–There Will Be No Troops on the Ground”—Except…

The Associated Press reported on November 7:

“A senior military official says that American military advisory teams will now go to Iraq’s western Anbar province where Islamic State militants have been gaining ground and slaying men, women and children. The teams are part of President Barack Obama’s new directive to expand the U.S. mission in Iraq by deploying another 1,500 U.S. troops to serve as advisers, trainers and security personnel. The official said it is likely that the bulk of the additional troops will be in Iraq by the end of the year. This would bring the total U.S. forces in Iraq to about 3,100, and would mark their first return to Anbar since the war ended.

“Obama is also asking Congress for more than $5 billion to help fund the fight. The White House says the troops won’t serve in a combat role, but will train, advise and assist Iraqi military and Kurdish forces fighting IS. White House press secretary Josh Earnest says Obama has also authorized the additional personnel to operate at Iraqi military facilities outside Baghdad and Erbil. Until now, U.S. troops have been operating a joint operation center setup with Iraqi forces there.”

Commentators expressed their fear that all of this might lead to another Vietnam with America again on the losing end. It was also criticized that there does not seem to exist any strategy and explanation of America’s clearly defined goals in Iraq and Syria; that everything is being decided ad hoc—on the spur of the moment; and that if Congress approves those measures, they bear the same culpability as the White House. Note also the next article.

America’s Mission in Iraq—Everything Going Wrong!

The Huffington Post wrote on November 11:

“In its early stages, I asked sarcastically, ‘What could possibly go wrong?’ As the mission enters its fourth month, the answer to that question is already grimly clear: just about everything. It may be time to ask, in all seriousness: What could possibly go right?…

“The latest American war was launched as a humanitarian mission. The goal of its first bombing runs was to save the Yazidis, a group few Americans had heard of until then, from genocide at the hands of the Islamic State (IS). Within weeks, however, a full-scale bombing campaign was underway against IS across Iraq and Syria with its own ‘coalition of the willing’ and 1,600 U.S. military personnel on the ground…

“The U.S. Department of State lists 60 participants in the coalition of nations behind the U.S. efforts against the Islamic State. Many of those countries (Somalia, Iceland, Croatia, and Taiwan, among them) have never been heard from again… There is no evidence that America’s Arab ‘allies’ like Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates, whose funding had long-helped extreme Syrian rebel groups, including IS, and whose early participation in a handful of air strikes was trumpeted as a triumph, are still flying.

“…in the end, the U.S. will either have to withdraw from Iraq yet again, or cede the western part of the country to IS, or place many, many boots on the ground…

“Al-Qaeda-linked fighters have just recently overrun key northern bastions previously controlled by U.S.-backed Syrian rebel groups and once again, as in Iraq, captured U.S. weapons have landed in the hands of extremists. Nothing has gone right for American hopes that moderate Syrian factions will provide significant aid in any imaginable future in the broader battle against IS…

“You don’t have to have a crystal ball to see the writing in the sand in Iraq and Syria. The military can already sense the coming failure that hangs like a miasma over Washington…”

We have said it many times before… America is not going to win this or any other war prior to Christ’s return.

One Curse After Another

Bloomberg News wrote on November 7:

“The U.S. Supreme Court agreed to consider a challenge to the subsidies that are a linchpin of President Barack Obama’s health-care overhaul, accepting a case that suddenly puts the law under a new legal cloud. Two years after upholding much of the law by a single vote, the justices today said they will hear a Republican-backed appeal targeting tax credits that have helped more than 4 million people afford insurance.

“A ruling blocking those credits might unravel the law, making other provisions ineffective and potentially destabilizing insurance markets in much of the country. The high court’s decision to hear the case comes days before the start of the law’s second open-enrollment season Nov. 15. A decision will come by June.

“The justices will consider an appeal filed by four Virginia residents seeking to block the subsidies in 36 states. The appeal says the Obama administration is engaging in a ‘gross distortion’ of the law’s wording by granting billions of dollars in tax credits to people in those states.

“A Supreme Court ruling against the administration would open a new period of uncertainty about the future of American health care. It would mean that more than half of the 7.3 million people who have bought Obamacare policies aren’t entitled to the subsidies they are receiving. The ripple effects might be even more dramatic. Without the tax credits, many of those people would find insurance so expensive that they would qualify for the law’s hardship exemption and no longer have to obtain a policy.

“That could raise coverage costs for insurers, forcing them to raise rates. Hospitals would be left to foot the bills for more uninsured patients.”

This is bad news either way. Obamacare is a curse for the American nation, but to repeal the tax credit provision would be an additional curse, as the astronomical rates of healthcare policies are already more than the average American can bear. To raise the rates even more would lead to the further destruction of the middle-class through America’s government and legal system.

No Discount–The UK Will Still Pay!

BBC News reported on November 7:

“George Osborne’s claim to have halved the UK’s £1.7bn EU budget surcharge has been challenged by his EU counterparts.

“The UK will pay two interest-free sums next year totalling £850m, instead of a larger lump sum by 1 December, after a rebate from Brussels due in 2016 appeared to have been brought forward. Mr Osborne argued the deal reached on Friday was a real result for Britain.

“But the Dutch finance minister said the UK would not get a discount. Shadow chancellor Ed Balls accused Mr Osborne of ‘spin’ and said it was ‘a diplomatic disaster for the government.’

“Under the initial plan, the UK was due to get a 1bn euros rebate in 2015-6 but it will be allowed to bring that forward to the second half of 2015 to reduce the surcharge. But its 2016 rebate will be 1bn euros smaller as a result.

“…foreign ministers questioned whether the UK’s contribution had changed. Ireland’s Finance Minister Michael Noonan said the UK would ‘pay the full amount’, and Hans Joerg Schelling, from Austria, said ‘the amount cannot be put in question’. Dutch finance minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem added: ‘The UK has … a rebate, which they have had for a very long time and of course this mechanism of rebate will also apply on the new contribution. So it’s not as if the British have been given a discount today.’

“And Eurosceptic Tory MEP Daniel Hannan suggested the deal achieved by the chancellor may not represent any reduction in the total amount. He said: ‘The EU sticks us with a bill. Ministers double it, apply the rebate, return to the original figure and claim victory. We’re meant to cheer? Britain is worse off in absolute terms, but a straw man has been knocked down.’

“UKIP leader Nigel Farage said Mr Osborne was ‘trying to spin his way out of disaster’, saying the UK was still going to pay the full £1.7bn.

“[Labour’s]  Mr Balls said: ‘By counting the rebate Britain was due anyway, they are desperately trying to claim that the backdated bill for £1.7bn has somehow been halved. But nobody will fall for this smoke and mirrors. The rebate was never in doubt and in fact was confirmed by the EU Budget Commissioner last month.’”

Die Zeit wrote on November 7:

“Cameron’s panic damages Europe. As Merkel became the strongest political in Europe, Cameron tries to make Merkel his strongest ally. But even as a closest ally, Markel cannot save the European skin of the British Premier.”

It reminds us of the Biblical prophecy—as a forerunner—that Ephraim (modern UK) will go to Assyria (modern Germany) for help, but Assyria cannot help them (compare Hosea 5:13)

Ukraine Under Attack?

Reuters reported on November 7:

“Ukraine’s military accused Russia on Friday of sending a column of 32 tanks and truckloads of troops into the country’s east to support pro-Russian separatists fighting government forces. A NATO military officer said on Friday the alliance had seen an increase in Russian troops and equipment along the border and was looking into reports of Russian tanks crossing into eastern Ukraine.”

Die Welt wrote on November 7:

“Moscow invades [east] Ukraine. Is the outbreak of war just a matter of time?”

America Russia’s Adversary?

The Financial Times wrote on November 10:

“According to Russian officials and security analysts, Moscow’s worst stand-off with the west since the end of the cold war has convinced Mr Putin’s government that it must moor its security interests to China because the Euro-Atlantic security architecture is broken beyond repair…

“Russian diplomats and analysts also said Moscow hoped to build the Shanghai Co-operation Organisation, founded by China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tadjikistan in 1996, into a more meaningful security alliance.

“In a speech last month that left western observers bewildered for its rabid anti-Americanism and its lack of proposals for a positive agenda, Mr Putin bemoaned what he described as the destruction of the mechanisms that used to govern international security affairs… He accused the US of creating a world order in which brute force could become the only means for resolving conflicts…

“Mr Putin is under no illusion that things will get any easier. The next US president is almost certain to be more hawkish towards Russia than Barack Obama…”

While Russia’s relationship with America and Europe is deteriorating, a strong alliance between Russia and China is being formed.

Israel Faces Tough Months

Reuters wrote on November 10:

“Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is trying to keep his fractious coalition together as talk of early elections grows, but in trying to bolster himself domestically he runs the risk of further alienating international partners.

“To satisfy restive far-right parties in his government, Netanyahu has promised more settlement on land the Palestinians seek for an independent state, greatly aggravating the United States and the European Union.

“And in an effort to keep ultra-nationalists sweet, he has not denounced their calls for Jewish prayer at Jerusalem’s holiest site, although he has said a decades-long ban on such prayer will not be changed.

“That cautious approach has harmed Israel’s ties with Jordan, which oversees the holy site – known to Muslims as Noble Sanctuary and Jews as Temple Mount – prompting Amman to withdraw its ambassador for the first time since a 1994 peace treaty.

“It has also fueled the worst violence Jerusalem has seen in a decade, with daily rioting in the mainly Arab east of the city and talk of a new Palestinian uprising. ‘From the outside, it’s hard to understand why he’s doing what he’s doing,’ says one European ambassador, expressing frustration at what he regards as Netanyahu’s stubbornness… That suggests the next half year could be a tumultuous period, with Netanyahu trying to keep his ever more demanding coalition partners onside, even if that means throwing them bones that alarm the Palestinians and international allies.

“The question is whether Netanyahu, Israel’s longest-serving prime minister since the first, David Ben-Gurion, can keep a handle on the growing unease his policy approach appears to be causing, or whether events might spiral out of control. With Sweden having last month become the first major Western country to recognize Palestine as an independent state, any miscalculation could provide other European countries with justifications to follow Sweden’s lead.

“And all the while, the Israeli prime minister is having to deal with a deepening security crisis as violence grows… And underpinning everything is the lack of any peace talks with the Palestinians. The last round broke off in April after months of largely fruitless sessions. Since then, relations between Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas have worsened markedly…

“It was only a few months ago that Netanyahu talked of a ‘new horizon’ in the Middle East, saying the threat from Islamic State meant that countries like Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Egypt shared an interest with Israel in defeating Islamist extremism. Now, however, with Jordan having withdrawn its ambassador and Egypt on edge about developments at the Noble Sanctuary, which contains al-Aqsa mosque and the Dome of the Rock, that new horizon is starting to look distant and cloudy.”

Evolution Backwards?

The Washington Post wrote on November 5:

“Researchers report that they’ve found the missing link between an ancient aquatic predator and its ancestors on land. Ichthyosaurs, the dolphin-like reptiles that lived in the sea during the time of the dinosaurs, evolved from terrestrial creatures that made their way back into the water over time. But the fossil record for the lineage has been spotty, without a clear link between land-based reptiles and the aquatic ichthyosaurs scientists know came after. Now, researchers report in Nature that they’ve found that link — an amphibious ancestor of the swimming ichthyosaurs named Cartorhynchus lenticarpus.

“Ocean-bound ichthyosaurs had very long snouts (leading to their frequent comparison to modern dolphins) that were made for capturing fish and squid. This new animal [Cartorhynchus lenticarpus] had a shorter snout — more like a land-based reptile. It also had large flippers and flexible wrists, which would have allowed it to flop around on land like a seal.

“One of the most important differences between this new ichthyosaur and its supposed descendants comes down to being big boned: When other vertebrates have evolved from land to sea living, they’ve gone through stages where they’re amphibious and heavy. Their thick bones probably allowed them to fight the power of strong coastal waves and stay grounded in shallow waters. Sure enough, this new fossil has much thicker bones than previously examined ichthyosaurs.

“The animal lived about 4 million years after the worst mass extinction in our planet’s history [It] was probably one of the first predators to appear after that extinction.”
Now, how did it appear? Out of thin air? In any event, this is another aspect of the incredibly juvenile fairy tale of the Evolution fantasy. According to that theory and the survival of the fittest idea, higher life forms developed from lower life forms—birds from reptiles, and mammals from fish and reptiles. Also, it is alleged that reptiles roaming the sea and the ocean evolved into a higher species of reptiles living on land.

But there has always been a problem with ocean-bound mammals, which the Evolution concept cannot explain. And now we are asked to believe that higher developed land-living reptiles “DE-volved” again into sea-living reptiles, turning the survival of the fittest concept on its head. Evolutionists, make up your minds! Please read our free booklet, “The Theory of Evolution—a Fairy Tale for Adults?”

Deep Divisions in the Catholic Church

The Washington Post wrote on November 10:

“Just a few years ago, former St. Louis Archbishop Raymond Leo Burke was riding high. A conservative leader in a conservative Catholic Church under a conservative pope, he seemed to fall into the Vatican’s favor after taking a few high-profile stands against the godless.

“The fights he picked always managed to make headlines. In 2004, the Wisconsin native said he would refuse to give pro-choice Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) communion. In 2007, he resigned from the board of a Catholic hospital after it invited Sheryl Crow, who is pro-choice, to play a benefit concert. And in 2009, he let the University of Notre Dame have it for giving President Obama an honorary degree.

“‘The proposed granting of an honorary doctorate at Notre Dame University to our president, who is so aggressively advancing an anti-life and anti-family agenda, is rightly the source of the greatest scandal,’ Burke said.

“The reward for this holy work? In 2008, Pope Benedict XVI made Burke head of the Vatican’s supreme court. In 2010, he made Burke a cardinal. 

“These were the good times. Then along came Francis — the freewheeling Argentine pope who loves gays, loves divorcees and hates income inequality. After a few high-profile disagreements with Burke, Francis made him patron of… a charity. The Associated Press called the office ‘largely ceremonial.’

“It was as if Chief Justice John Roberts had been sent to call balls and strikes at a little-league game. The Catholic News Service expounded upon the seriousness of Francis’s [demotion] of the 66-year-old cardinal:

“‘It is highly unusual for a pope to remove an official of Cardinal Burke’s stature and age without assigning him comparable responsibilities elsewhere…’

“‘Many have expressed their concerns to me,’ Burke said last week, as USA Today reported. ‘There is a strong sense that the church is like a ship without a rudder.’… For Francis, this seems to have been the last straw…  There are quite obviously deep divisions within the church. Archbishop Burke is one bishop who has chosen to confront them directly, as opposed to other bishops who may prefer to minimize them…”

“Pagan” Nominal Christians?

Breitbart wrote on November 7:

“Not all those who claim to be Christians really are, said Pope Francis Friday morning. Some are Christians ‘in name only,’ he said. ‘They bear the name of Christians but live a life of pagans.’

“In his homily at Mass, the Pope [said] that there have always been two types of Christian, those who truly followed Christ and those who only pretended to. At the time of Saint Paul, there were ‘worldly Christians, Christians in name only, with two or three Christian features, but nothing more.’ The Pope called this sort of people ‘Pagan Christians,’ whom St. Paul called ‘enemies of the cross of Christ.’

“‘In Paul’s time, the Pope said, the two groups of Christians ‘were in church together praised the Lord, and were called Christians.’ So what was the difference?, he asked. The second were ‘enemies of the cross of Christ.’

“The Pope went on to say that ‘even today there are many! We must be careful not to slip into the way of pagan Christians.’ These are the ones, he said, who are ‘pagans painted over with two brush strokes of Christianity, so they look like Christians, but are really pagans.’

“According to Francis, we all run the risk of becoming ‘Christians in appearance.’

“The Pope suggested that there are questions we can ask ourselves to know what sort of Christians we are. He said that all of us—the Pope included—need to ask ourselves: ‘How much worldliness is in me? How much paganism?’”.

These are good questions, but it is strange that they should be asked by the pope—the leader of the Roman Catholic Church. After all, it is the Roman Catholic Church which placed a Christian mantle over pagan concepts and worship practices.

For instance, the “Christian” celebrations of Sunday, Christmas and Easter are pagan to the core. They have NOTHING to do with the worship of Christ. In fact, God forbids us to worship Him in that way, saying that the pagans worshipped their sun and moon gods and goddesses on Sundays, Christmas and Easter, and that true Christians are NOT to worship the Father or Jesus Christ in that way or on those days.  For more information, please read our free booklet, “Don’t Keep Christmas.”

Was Jesus Married and Did He Have Children?

Beitbart reported on November 10:

“Did Jesus marry Mary Magdalene and have children? Although the Bible portrays Jesus as a single man, the idea that he may have had an earthly family continues to be a perennial favourite spawning numerous fictional works such as bestseller[s] The DaVinci Code and The Last Temptation of Christ, both of which were popular enough to be turned into Hollywood films.

“Now the authors of a new book, The Lost Gospel, claim to have uncovered real evidence that the marriage did indeed take place, and that Jesus had two sons, Manasseh and Ephraim, the Daily Mail has reported.

“The book draws its conclusions from a text found in the British Library, where it has lain for 20 years after the British Museum moved it there. It was bought in 1847 from a dealer who claimed to have bought the manuscript, a Syriac text written on vellum, from the St Macarius Monastery in Egypt…

“The authors were easily able to decode the basic symbolism, but what the authors eventually discovered is as surprising as it ground-breaking: the confirmation of Jesus’ marriage to Mary Magdalene; the names of their two children; the towering presence of Mary Magdalene (who was a Gentile priestess), a serious plot on Jesus’ life in 19 C.E. prior to the crucifixion; an assassination plot against their children; Jesus’ connection to political figures at the highest level of the Roman Empire—Emperor Tiberius and his protégé Sejanus;  and a religious movement that antedates that of Paul—the Church of Mary Magdalene…

“But not everyone is convinced. Commenting on the publisher’s blurb, Mark Goodacre, Professor of New Testament and Christian Origins as Duke University said: ‘If there are some grounds for caution, one might see them in the idea that this work will provide ‘the confirmation of Jesus’ marriage to Mary Magdalene’. ‘Since there are no ancient sources that speak of Jesus’ marriage to Mary Magdalene, it is not clear at this stage how a newly discovered work could provide ‘confirmation’ of this. The note that she is a ‘Gentile priestess’ is curious and, one would have thought, makes it unlikely that the work goes back to the first century, so too the idea that they had two named children.’”

This whole concept is ridiculous. There have been many ancient manuscripts about Jesus, containing fairy tales and outright nonsense, which are in clear contradiction to the Holy Scriptures. Fabrications and forgeries already circulated at the time of Paul. We point out in our free booklet, “The Authority of the Bible,” that Peter, Paul and John canonized the Scriptures, and no mention is contained therein of any marriage between Jesus and Mary Magdalene, resulting in two sons, and that she was a Gentile priestess. On the other hand, the Bible does mention the marriage of the apostle Peter, his mother-in-law, and the fact that other apostles were married as well, and that their wives accompanied them on their travels, but no inkling of a wife is mentioned in regard to Christ.    

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