September 19, 2007
Important events in the Mideast keep bubbling to the surface in the world news. The region is really getting ripe for a war if this bellicose activity continues.
Three new reports (see links below) have just emerged which confirm how high the regional tensions now are. FOX-News’ website headed its home page earlier this morning with a story that the Israeli government has declared Gaza to be “a hostile entity.” Later in the day, the same basic story was re-titled “Rice: US ‘Will Not Abandon Innocent Palestinians in Gaza.'” What “spin control!” I’ll bet the US State Department urgently pressed FOX News to give the story a “kinder, gentler” sound for diplomatic reasons. The Israelis, of course, are simply stating an obvious fact in declaring Hamas-led Gaza to be “a hostile entity.” Numerous rockets have rained down on the Israeli city of Sderot from Gaza, and the Israeli government’s response has been very weak so far given the warlike actions of the Palestinians. The Israeli declaration paves the way for the Israelis to “a cut-off of power and fuel supplies” to Gaza, which would create an instant crisis of mammoth proportions in Gaza. Israeli Defense Minister, Ehud Barak, said “Israel was moving closer to a large-scale military operation in Gaza.” Given the fact that the endless Palestinian rocket attacks are a legitimate “cause for war,” one wonders when the patience of the Israelis will run out. The continual attacks on Israel from Gazan territory also show it is a fallacy to think that Israel can “trade land for peace.” Israel has repeatedly given away more and more conquered lands and it has reaped no peace.
The second key story is that a joint Iranian-Syrian chemical weapons depot in Syria was “rocked by an explosion in July.” The authoritative publication, Jane’s Defense Weekly, said “the blast hit the site of a joint Iranian/Syrian project to fit short-range ballistic missiles with chemical warheads.” The report adds that “15 Syrians [and] dozens of Iranian weapons engineers were killed.” Perhaps this blast was simply a result of a bungled procedure on the part of the Iranians and Syrians. However, given the fact that an Israeli air strike into Northern Syria reportedly destroyed a hidden Syrian-North Korean nuclear site earlier this month, one wonders if the destruction at the Syrian chemical weapons facility was an accident or whether the Israelis “sent a message” to Syria in this July blast. Obviously, “short range ballistic missiles” with chemical warheads and based in Syria can have only one target: Israel. Israel has the right to preemptively defend itself against a WMD attack.
The third story is an Aviation Week and Space Technology article sent to me by an alert reader of this blog. This report reveals that India and Israel have begun “major military space cooperation.” An Indian rocket is launching both an Indian and an Israeli military satellite this month into polar orbits which will be able to spy on Iran (and presumably Syria and China as well). This is a remarkable new step in India’s closer cooperation with Western nations. As previous blogs have noted, it looks more and more likely that India is the “Sheba and Dedan” power of Ezekiel 38:13 which (along with Japan and the “young tiger” nations of Asia) will not be part of the rapidly-emerging Gog-Magog alliance led by Russia, China and Iran. India and the West need each other as allies to counter the growing military power of China. It is also noteworthy that the Israelis are launching this improved military spy satellite at this time when it is sorely needed.
The earlier reports about Israeli-Gazan tensions reaching a flashpoint and the “accidental blast” at a Syrian-Iranian chemical weapons depot in Syria shows that preparations for war are definitely coming more visible in the Mideast. This kind of Mideast tension in the latter-days was prophesied in the Bible millennia ago. Zechariah 12:3-4 prophesied that the city of Jerusalem would become “a cup of trembling unto all people round about [it]” in the latter days. This has been fulfilled in our time as the city of Jerusalem is a major stumbling block for all regional nations in the Israeli-Palestinian efforts to find a peaceful “two state” solution. Zechariah 12:3 also prophesies “in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: all that burden themselves with it shall cut in pieces though all the people of the world of the earth be gathered against it.” This has also been fulfilled as well in our modern times. The USA is trying to get the Israelis to make concessions to the Palestinians so the Sunni Arab nations will stay allied to the West and keep the oil spigot open. The EU keeps trying to increase its influence in the region (because of oil and also to appease the millions of Moslems now living in Europe). Russia and China are working to increase their influence in the Mideast–mostly by arming Iran and Syria against the Israelis, but China’s Premier has also visited Saudi Arabia in an effort to divert at least some Saudi oil from the West to China. The UN has various “peace-keeping” forces in the region and especially on the Israeli-Lebanese border. Many nations and alliances of nations have their geopolitical focus intersecting at or near Jerusalem.
Eventually, Jerusalem will be “compassed by armies” at Luke 21:20 foretells. Revelation 16:12 prophesies that at the very end of this age, an Asian army coming from the east will attack westward across the Euphrates River. The attackers have to be the Asian powers foretold to form the Gog-Magog alliance in Ezekiel 38 at the end of this age. Zechariah 14 describes the warfare which will be raging in the environs of Jerusalem when Jesus Christ (the Messiah) returns to establish his millennial kingdom.
We do not yet know if a major or minor war will erupt in the Mideast as a result of the current high tensions in the area. Jesus Christ prophesied that there would be “wars and rumors of wars” in the very end of our age before he returns. We are now witnessing a “rumor of war” in the Mideast, and Jerusalem is in the middle of it all. If war erupts, I think the Israeli military will fight much more aggressively and with far better strategic purpose than in the ill-fought Hezbollah border war last year. Why? The Israelis now have a capable Defense Minister in Ehud Barak, and he enjoys the respect and loyalty of the IDF. In the Hezbollah war, the Israeli forces were handicapped by having a military neophyte as Defense Minister who was in that position for internal Israeli political reasons, not because of his military qualifications. The IDF will have firm leadership if a new war breaks out.