September 13, 2008

News for September 13, 2008

| Bookmark at Delicious | Print This Page | |


Search Watchman Bible Study


Ahmadinejad: Iran will support Hamas until collapse of Israel Haaretz (September 13, 2008) - Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad vowed Friday to keep supporting the Palestinian militant group Hamas until the "collapse of Israel." The Iranian news agency Khabar quoted Ahmadinejad as telling Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh that Iran views the support of the Palestinian people as part of its religious and national duty and that Iran will stand behind the Palestinian nation "until the big victory feast which is the collapse of the Zionist regime." In a phone conversation between the two leaders, the Iranian president said that the continued Hamas resistance against Israel and the group's achievements would always be "a source of pride for all Muslims." Iran does not acknowledge the sovereignty of Israel and vowed to support Hamas until what Ahmadinejad calls "deliverance from Zionists (Israel)." Haniyeh, the leader of the Islamist Hamas movement in the Gaza Strip, was elected Palestinian prime minister in 2006, but was dismissed in June 2007 by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, after Hamas violently seized control over the Gaza Strip from Abbas' Palestinian Authority.
| Iran | Israel | Islam |


Syria-Russia naval cooperation grows YNet News (September 12, 2008) - Russia announced Friday it was renovating a Syrian port for use by the Russian fleet in what could signal an effort for a better foothold in the Mediterranean amid the rift with the United States over Georgia. Syria was Moscow's strongest Mideast ally during the Cold War. The alliance largely waned after the 1991 fall of the Soviet Union, though Russia has continued some weapons sales to Damascus. Syrian President Bashar Assad has increasingly reached out to Russia recently, including Seeking weapons and offering broader military cooperation. Friday's announcement was the first tangible sign of any new cooperation. The Itar-Tass news agency said Friday that a vessel from Russia's Black Sea fleet had begun restoring facilities at Syria's Mediterranean port of Tartus for use by the Russian military. The two countries' naval chiefs also met in Moscow on Friday and discussed "further strengthening mutual trust and mutual understanding between the two states' fleets," A Russian naval official, Igor Dygalo, told Itar-Tass. The Tartus renovations could signal an intention to have a long-term Russian naval presence there. In late August, Russia's ambassador to Damascus, Igor Belyev, said that Russian ships already patrol the area, but "a new development is that the Russian presence in the Mediterranean will become permanent." Syrian media made no mention of the Russian announcement Friday, and Syrian officials could not be reached for comment. Russian military experts said Tartus would be a considerable boost for operations in the Mediterranean. "It is much more advantageous to have such a facility than to return ships patrolling the Mediterranean to their home bases," Former Black Sea Fleet commander Adm. Eduard Baltin said, according to the Russian Interfax-AVN service. The former first deputy commander the Russian Navy, Adm. Igor Kasatonov, said Tartus "is of great geopolitical significance considering that it is the only such Russian facility abroad."
| Islam | Isaiah 17 | Gog/Magog |


Drugs Affect More Drinking Water Associated Press (September 12, 2008) - Testing prompted by an Associated Press story that revealed trace amounts of pharmaceuticals in drinking water supplies has shown that more Americans are affected by the problem than previously thought — at least 46 million. That's up from 41 million people reported by the AP in March as part of an investigation into the presence of pharmaceuticals in the nation's waterways. The AP stories prompted federal and local legislative hearings, brought about calls for mandatory testing and disclosure, and led officials in at least 27 additional metropolitan areas to analyze their drinking water. Positive tests were reported in 17 cases, including Reno, Nev., Savannah, Ga., Colorado Springs, Colo., and Huntsville, Ala. Results are pending in three others. The test results, added to data from communities and water utilities that bowed to pressure to disclose earlier test results, produce the new total of Americans known to be exposed to drug-contaminated drinking water supplies. The overwhelming majority of U.S. cities have not tested drinking water while eight cities — including Boston, Phoenix and Seattle — were relieved that tests showed no detections. "We didn't think we'd find anything because our water comes from a pristine source, but after the AP stories we wanted to make sure and reassure our customers," said Andy Ryan, spokesman for Seattle Public Utilities. The substances detected in the latest tests mirrored those cited in the earlier AP report. Chicago, for example, found a cholesterol medication and a nicotine derivative. Many cities found the anti-convulsant carbamazepine. Officials in one of those communities, Colorado Springs, say they detected five pharmaceuticals in all, including a tranquilizer and a hormone. "This is obviously an emerging issue and after the AP stories came out we felt it was the responsible thing for us to do, as a utility, to find out where we stand. We believe that at these levels, based on current science, that the water is completely safe for our customers," said Colorado Springs spokesman Steve Berry. "We don't want to create unnecessary alarm, but at the same time we have a responsibility as a municipal utility to communicate with our customers and let them know." more...
| America |


EU flag and anthem revived by MEPs Telegraph UK (September 12, 2008) - MEPs have decided to revive symbols of the European Union like the flag and the anthem in an attempt to foster greater pride in the institution. The flag, a politically correct motto and Beethoven's Ode to Joy will all be used more by the European Parliament as it tries to help citizens identify more easily with the EU. But Nigel Farage, leader of the UK Independence Party and an MEP himself, has accused his parliamentary colleagues of "trying to ram them down our throats". MEPs said: "Symbols are vital elements of any communication process." The politicians stated they "convey an emotional image of the underlying values of the organisations they represent." With this in mind, they have decided to make more use of the flag and the motto "United in Diversity." It is to be printed on all material emanating from the European Parliament. More controversially, the finale from Beethoven's Ninth Symphony, Ode to Joy, is also to be played more at official occasions. It has unfortunate associations, having been used previously to celebrate Adolf Hitler's birthday and as the anthem of a socially divided Rhodesia under Ian Smith. Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany had said that eliminating the use of symbols was a key difference between the EU constitution, which was rejected in French and Dutch referenda in 2005, and the Lisbon Treaty which followed. David Miliband, the Foreign Secretary, has also welcomed their reduced importance, telling the House of Commons last July: "It is good that the symbols, flags and anthems, which distracted attention from the discussion of the European constitutional treaty, are done away with so that we can focus on what will make the EU useful to this country - jobs, climate and energy, the issues that matter to ordinary people." Mr Farage told The Times: "We were told that the symbols would disappear .. now they are trying to ram them down our throats."
| EU/UN / 4th Kingdom |


Venezuela joins Bolivia and expels U.S. ambassador CBC News (September 11, 2008) - Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has announced that the U.S. ambassador has 72 hours to leave Venezuela and he's recalling his ambassador from Washington. Chavez said he's asking U.S. Ambassador Patrick Duddy to leave as a means of showing solidarity with Bolivian President Evo Morales, who recently announced that he was expelling Washington's envoy to his country. Chavez announced the decision during a televised speech, hours after saying his government had detained a group of alleged conspirators in a plot to overthrow him. Chavez accused the group of current and former military officers of trying to assassinate him and topple the government with support from the United States. He didn't offer evidence. U.S. officials have repeatedly denied Chavez's accusations that Washington has backed plots against him. Bolivia's ambassador to the United States, Gustavo Guzman, was called to the U.S. State Department earlier Thursday and ordered to leave the country to reciprocate for Bolivia expelling the U.S. ambassador, said a department official who spoke on condition of anonymity. The move came after Morales said Wednesday that U.S. Ambassador Philip Goldberg is persona non grata in Bolivia, and asked his foreign minister to send a note to the American legate asking that he leave the country. Goldberg was accused of inciting anti-government protesters, although Morales offered no specific evidence. Morales' plans to overhaul the constitution and redirect gas revenues have incited two weeks of protests, which recently turned violent as demonstrators in the country's energy-rich eastern provinces stormed public offices, blocked roads and seized gas fields. At least eight people were killed and 20 injured Thursday, according to authorities, as anti-government protesters fought Morales's backers in eastern Bolivia and seized more natural gas fields. Morales is an indigenous Bolivian whose rise to power in 2005 was heralded as a watershed moment for the country's majority aboriginal population. He has used his first presidential term to effectively nationalize much of the nation's petroleum and mineral wealth — often to the detriment of foreign corporations and Bolivia's old-guard, wealthy elites. His economic policies have kindled an autonomy movement and touched off demonstrations in the resource-rich lowland regions of eastern Bolivia, where residents aren't keen to see royalties redistributed more widely among the populace.
| America |


Nasrallah: No peace in Middle East as long as Israel exists Haaretz (September 11, 2008) - The Hezbollah leader went on to say that his Lebanon-based guerilla group is stronger than ever and is prepared for its next confrontation with Israel. "Any Israeli attack on Lebanon, Iran, Syria or Gaza will be met with a fierce response," Nasrallah said. He added that Hezbollah has grown logistically and militarily stronger, claiming that all of Lebanon has united against a common enemy - Israel. One subject Nasrallah did not broach in the interview is the assassination last February of the group's second-in-command, Imad Mughniyeh. Nasrallah did not discuss how or when his group would avenge the killing. Recent Israeli intelligence reports, however, have suggested that Hezbollah is planning to abduct Israelis abroad as revenge for Mughniyeh's assassination.
| Iran | Israel | Islam | Isaiah 17 | Gog/Magog |


The Feds are Running Scared The Daily Reckoning (September 11, 2008) - The fog of war – that is, in the “war” between inflation and deflation – is lifting. We’re beginning to see more clearly which way the battle is going. “America’s giant mortgage companies nationalized,” is how Le Monde treated Monday’s big story. “The biggest bailout in history...” it went on. But what does it mean when the world’s most free-market government nationalizes its largest finance industry? It means a couple things: First, that the days of “laissez-faire”, even ersatz laissez-faire, are over. No more deregulation. No more tax cuts. No more free trade agreements. Second, that the feds are running scared. They are in retreat. The battle between a natural market correction...and an unnatural, inflationary boom...is going against them. We were right all along – or almost right; when the dot.com bubble burst it marked the beginning of the end – the end of the bull market on Wall Street...the end of the credit expansion that began in ’82...and the peak of American power and influence in the world. The decline since then has been delayed and disguised – by a flood of new liquidity from the feds. But now, there’s no stopping it. And it’s much worse than it would have been 8 years ago. Because Americans became more and more used to spending money they didn’t have; now they have more debt than ever. And because the Chinese and other foreigners became more and more used to selling things to people who couldn’t pay for them; now their new apartment buildings are empty and their new factories are quiet. And now, the downturn is global...and it will be longer, and harder, than practically anyone imagines. This just in: “Top China developer’s sales fall sharply.” Maybe it was the distraction of the Olympics, but China’s biggest listed property developer, Vanke, said sales fell 35% last month. And this too: Yesterday, gold fell more than $30 – to $757. The euro rose to $1.40. Oil is rising this morning, on fears of Hurricane Ike, but it closed yesterday at $102. Our guess is that it will sink to the $70 range. And here’s Le Monde again: “Good news, finally...almost everywhere, inflation remains under control and in retreat.” Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Inflation may be in retreat. But it’s not good news. It means the whole world is sinking into a slump – not just the US and Britain. And that’s what the feds are afraid of. Sec. Paulson justified the takeover of Mac and Mae on the grounds that the markets and the taxpayers needed “protection from a systemic risk.” What was the risk? That both Freddie and Fannie would go broke, that houses would fall to what they were really worth, and that – when the federally-chartered agencies stopped paying their debt to foreign lenders – the whole world financial system would melt down. Driven by fear...Paulson took the bold action... more...
| EU/UN / 4th Kingdom | America | Economic Crisis |


U.S. to guarantee Palestinian state WorldNet Daily (September 11, 2008) - The U.S. is planning to issue a letter guaranteeing the country will back agreements reached during current Israeli-Palestinian negotiations aimed at creating a Palestinian state before President Bush leaves office in January, WND has learned. The move is intended to ensure any agreements reached by the Israelis and the Palestinian Authority, and spelled out in a joint document, will be recognized by the next U.S. administration and binding for Israel and the PA. The information comes as Jacob Walles, the U.S. consul-general, stated in an interview with a major Palestinian newspaper yesterday that Israel and the PA agreed to negotiate Jerusalem and the Jordan Valley area leading to the Dead Sea. In response to the report, the State Department issued a statement claiming the U.S. government has not taken a position on the borders of a future Palestinian state and denying Jerusalem is being discussed. But Israeli and Palestinian sources intimately familiar with the current talks tell WND Jerusalem is being negotiated, with Palestinian officials claiming the talks are in advance stages. The sources also said the U.S. recently floated a plan to divide Jerusalem. According to informed Israeli and Palestinian sources, officials from the State Department this year presented both negotiating sides with several proposals for consideration regarding the future status of Jerusalem. It was unclear whether the U.S. proposals were accepted. One U.S. plan for Jerusalem obtained by WND was divided into timed phases and, among other things, called for Israel eventually to consider forfeiting parts of the Temple Mount, Judaism's holiest site. According to the first stage of the U.S. proposal, Israel initially would give the PA some municipal and security sovereignty over key Arab neighborhoods in eastern Jerusalem. The PA would be allowed to open some official institutions in Jerusalem, could elect a mayor for the Palestinian side of the city and would deploy some kind of so-called basic security force to maintain law and order. The specifics of the force were not detailed in the plan. The initial stage also calls for the PA to operate Jerusalem municipal institutions, such as offices to oversee trash collection and maintenance of roads. After five years, if both sides keep specific commitments called for in a larger principal agreement, according to the U.S. plan, the PA would be given full sovereignty over agreed-upon eastern Jerusalem neighborhoods and discussions would be held regarding an arrangement for the Temple Mount. The plan doesn't specify which parts of the Temple Mount could be forfeited to the Palestinians or whether an international force may be involved. The PA also could deploy official security forces in Jerusalem separate from a non-defined basic force after the five-year period and also could open major governmental institutions, such as a president's office, and offices for the finance and foreign ministries. The U.S. plan leaves Israel and the PA to negotiate which Jerusalem neighborhoods would become Palestinian. According to top diplomatic sources, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, who visited the region last month, pressed Israel to sign a document by the end of the year that would include Jerusalem by offering the Palestinians a state in Israel's capital city as well as in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. The Israeli team rather would conclude an agreement on paper by the end of the year that would give the Palestinians a state in the West Bank, Gaza and some Israeli territory, leaving conclusions on Jerusalem for a later date, the informed diplomatic sources told WND. The sources said the Palestinian team has been pushing to conclude a deal by January on all core issues, including Jerusalem, and has been petitioning the U.S. to pressure Israel into signing an agreement on paper that offers the Palestinians eastern Jerusalem. Rice, the sources said, has asked Israeli leaders to bend to what the U.S. refers to as a "compromise position," concluding an Israeli-Palestinian agreement by the end of the year that guarantees sections of Jerusalem to the Palestinians. But Israel would not be required to withdraw from Jerusalem for a period of one to five years.
| Israel | Islam | Dividing the Land | America |


Taxation Nation: Now You Own Fannie and Freddie McAlvany Weekly Commentary (September 10, 2008) - "It seems to me in one sentence, two things. We're right in the midst of the greatest financial crisis in the history of our country - number one - and number two; we're probably already over the line to becoming socialistic state, the USSA, the United Socialist States of America." - Jim Deeds
| EU/UN / 4th Kingdom | NewWorldOrder | America | Economic Crisis |

After listening to this, you probably already know where I think we're headed - a global cashless society where perceived wealth and prosperity are provided by the globalist government, the New World Order. This ½ hour show goes into the socialist steps that will bring us there and how the financial instability we are currently experiencing will lead us there.

Four dead, 26 injured in Iran quake near oil port Hot News Turkey (September 10, 2008) - The U.S. Geological Service said the quake's magitude was 6.1 and it struck at 1100 GMT about 53 km (33 miles) west-southwest of Bandar Abbas, which is home to an oil refinery and the country's main navy base. "All our rescue groups are on alert in Bandar Abbas and (nearby) Qeshm island. We have sent groups to the area. There is the possibility of casualties and fatalities," Hazbavi earlier told Reuters. Iranian reports variously described the quake as 6.0 and 7.5 on the Richter scale. The earthquake in southern Iran was 7.5 on richter scale, Iran's Fars News Agency said, citing Iranian official. State television said the tremor lasted about 30 seconds but was followed by at least 10 aftershocks, the most powerful measuring 4.8 on the Richter Scale. Iran's state-owned Press TV described the tremor as strong but said there were no reports of casualties. "Its centre was Bandar-e Khamir. It might have damaged old parts of the place but we still don't have any (casualty) reports," an Interior Ministry official told Reuters. more...
| Iran | Earth Changes |


A Magnitude 6.5 Earthquake Strikes Mid-Atlantic Ridge Region EMSC-CSEM (September 10, 2008)
| Earth Changes |


Mag. 7.0 Earthquake Hits Northern Japan Associated Press (September 10, 2008) - A magnitude 7.0 earthquake hit northern Japan on Thursday morning, triggering a small tsunami that apparently caused no damage, Japan's Meteorological Agency said. There were no immediate reports of injuries. The agency said the quake hit at 9:21 a.m. off the eastern coast Hokkaido, Japan's northernmost island at a depth of about 12.4 miles. A 4-inch tsunami rippled at the shore about 35 minutes after the quake. A warning had been issued for a tsunami of up to 20 inches along the eastern coast of Hokkaido and the northeastern coast of Japan's main island of Honshu. Authorities ordered people to stay away from beaches. National broadcaster NHK showed footage of the coastal area, but there did not appear to be any damage. The report said the force of the quake had not broken windows or knocked items from shelves.
| Earth Changes |


Russian Bombers Land in Venezuela Miami Herald (September 10, 2008) - Two Russian strategic bombers landed in Venezuela on Wednesday as part of military maneuvers, President Hugo Chávez said, welcoming the unprecedented deployment at a time of increasing tensions between Moscow and the U.S. The Venezuelan leader said the two Russian Tu-160 bombers will conduct maneuvers and that he hopes to "fly one of those things'' himself. Russian military analysts said it was the first time Russian strategic bombers have landed in the Western Hemisphere since the Cold War. The surprise foray into Venezuela was certain to anger Washington and add to the strain in U.S.-Russian relations over Russia's war in Georgia. Chávez called the deployment part of a move toward a "pluri-polar world'' -- a reference to moving away from U.S. dominance. "The Yankee hegemony is finished," Chavez said in a televised speech. The Russian Defense Ministry said the bombers flew to Venezuela on a training mission and would conduct training flights over neutral waters in the next few days before returning to Russia, according to a statement carried by Russian news wires. Ministry spokesman Alexander Drobyshevsky refused to say how long the deployment would last or say whether the planes were carrying any weapons. Military officers in the past have said Russian strategic bombers do not carry live weapons on patrol flights. NATO fighters escorted the two Russian bombers on their 13-hour trip to Venezuela over the Arctic and Atlantic Oceans, the Defense Ministry said. The Russian deployment appeared to be a tit-for-tat response to the U.S. move to send warships to deliver aid to U.S.-allied Georgia after its war last month with Russia. more...


Rabbi Tendler to Rabbis: Permit Temple Mount Visits! Israel National News (September 10, 2008) - Rabbi Moshe David Tendler, a prominent Torah scholar and lecturer in Yeshiva University in New York, and a Ph.D. in microbiology, says that the recent renewal by top rabbis of a ban on entry to the Temple Mount is either based on wrong information or guided by the government's political considerations. "The citation of Jewish Law that is being spouted to prohibit Jewish entry to the Temple Mount is sometimes embarrassing," Rabbi Tendler told IsraelNationalRadio's Yishai Fleisher this week. He said the Chief Rabbinate must exercise its authority for the sake of the entire Nation of Israel. Hear the interview (starts at 2:25 minutes) Listen Now or Download Three Sages Ask for Renewed Ban Last month, Rabbi Shalom Elyashiv, Rabbi Chaim Kanievsky, and former Sephardic chief rabbi Rabbi Ovadia Yosef - all renowned rabbis of the hareidi non-nationalist religious sector - sent a letter asking that the ban on Jewish entry to the Temple Mount be re-issued. The letter was sent to Rabbi Shmuel Rabinovich, the Rabbi of the Holy Sites on behalf of the government of Israel. The rabbis' letter is based on the grave Biblical prohibition on setting foot, while in the present impure state, on certain parts of the Temple Mount - and the lack of clarity as to where those parts might be. "As time passed," the letter states, "we have lost knowledge of the precise location of the Temple, and anyone entering the Temple Mount is liable to unwittingly enter the area of the Temple and the Holy of Holies. Entrance to the Temple Mount, and the defilement of the Holy of Holies, is more severe than any of the violations in the Torah." more...
| Israel | Temple Mount |


Swastika Epidemic in the United States Israel National News (September 10, 2008) - An epidemic of swastikas has spread in the United States in recent days. Police are scrambling to find suspects as Nazi symbols and other anti-Semitic graffiti have appeared on storefronts, synagogues and other locations in dozens of locations across the country. Many incidents occurred over the Labor Day holiday. Rewards have been offered for the finding of the culprits. In Arizona, graffiti “artists” spray-painted swastikas on several buildings, including a Family Dollar store. Some of the swastikas were accompanied by a painted circle with an “x” running through it and the words “Say No” appearing in the middle. Police are looking for the culprits of these attacks and others in the area, including the painting of swastikas and other anti-Semitic messages on a traffic sign, a garage door and several mailboxes. On Sunday, near Boston, Massachusetts, a swastika was found scratched into the door of a Reform temple. Suspects have yet to be found after Rabbi Benjamin Lefkowitz found the Nazi symbol on the door of Temple Beth Sholom in the town of Hull, according to the local newspaper The Patriot Ledger. Jewish institutions in Georgia and California also became the repeated targets of swastika tagging over the weekend. The same Sunday of the Hull, Mass. attack, the Atlanta Jounal-Constitution reported that in the Atlanta, Georgia suburb of Sandy Springs, a swastika was found painted on a stop sign near a Jewish day school. It was the second time in a month that the area near the Epstein School has been targeted with swastikas. Sandy Springs police announced Tuesday that they were doubling the reward offered for information leading to the capture and conviction of the perpetrators, from $2,500 to $5,000. Over the weekend, vandals painted a swastika on a Conservative synagogue northeast of San Diego, California. The San Diego Sheriff’s Department reported that it was the third time since April that Temple Ner Tamid in Poway was targeted with anti-Semitic graffiti. Local authorities reported that the synagogue, serving some 120 families, was targeted in May with “white-supremacist letters, numbers and signs”, including symbols that apparently meant “Heil Hitler.” more...
| Israel | America |


Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to Return to U.S. Fox News (September 10, 2008) - A U.N. spokesman has confirmed to FOX News that Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad will return to the U.S. to address the U.N.'s assembly on Sept. 23. Jewish groups plan to hold a large protest rally under the slogan "Stop Iran Now!" during Ahmadinejad's visit, Israel National News reported. The rally will take place in Dag Hammarskjöld Plaza, next to the U.N. building in which Ahmadinejad is scheduled to address the General Assembly. The visit comes a year after Ahmadinejad addressed students and faculty at Columbia University last fall. During his last visit, Ahmadinejad ignited a media firestorm with controversial comments in which he refuted the claim that Iran discriminates against women, and was derided loudly by the audience when he said there are no homosexuals in his country. Several people contested Ahmadinejad's invitation from Columbia and criticized the university for extending one. While Columbia President Lee Bolligner offered a scathing introduction to Ahmadinejad's address, it offered little comfort for those opposed to the event.
| Iran | America |


Former German president bashes EU court EU Observer (September 10, 2008) - The European Court of Justice needs to be stopped from undermining national jurisdiction, former German President Roman Herzog and Lüder Gerken, the director of the Centre for European Policy, have warned in a comment published by the EUobserver. The sharp words come in the wake of similar arguments coming from Denmark and Austria accusing the court of stepping beyond its bounds. Several cases analysed by Mr Herzog prove, in his view, that the European Court of Justice "systematically ignores fundamental principles of the Western interpretation of law", that it "ignores the will of the legislator, or even turns it into its opposite" and "invents legal principles serving as grounds for later judgements". One key judgement, known as the Mangold case, is set to be analysed by the German Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe and will set the tone for future relations between the ECJ and national courts, writes Mr Herzog. Mr Mangold, a 56-year-old lawyer, was employed in June 2003 on a permanent contract, in compliance with a temporary provision to the German labour law, which lowered the minimum age for temporary contracts from 58 to 52 years, in an attempt to encourage employers to hire more older workers. Mr Mangold argued that this particular piece of German legislation contravened the principles within the EU's Equal Treatment Framework Directive adopted in 2000, as it was clearly age discriminatory. The ECJ ruled in November 2005 that the provisions of the German labour market reform were indeed infringing the directive, although it accepted that member states still had until December 2006 to transpose it into national law. However, according to the ECJ ruling, in the period leading up to the transposition of the directive, member states "must refrain from taking any measures liable to seriously compromise the attainment of the result prescribed by that directive." Mr Herzog argues however that both labour market policy and social policy are under the jurisdiction - or in Brussels jargon - 'core competences' of the member states: "This case clearly demonstrates to what extent EU regulation and EU jurisdiction nevertheless interfere in the governing of these core competences." In order to justify its judgement, the ECJ also resorted to a "somewhat adventurous construction", that a ban on age discrimination was included in the "constitutional traditions common to the member states" and "various international treaties", notes the former German president. However, this was a "fabrication", he believes, as only in two of the then 25 member states - Finland and Portugal - was there any reference to a ban on age discrimination, and no international treaty mentions this at all. "To put it bluntly, with this construction, which the ECJ more or less pulled out of a hat, they were acting not as part of the judicial power but as the legislature," he says. The former German president proposes the setting up of an independent EU court to deal with competence questions, since the ECJ is "not appropriate" to watch over the subsidiarity principle and the matters of member states. "The ECJ was created with the aim of providing a arbitrator to mediate in the interests of the EU and those of the member states," but on the other hand, it is bound by the EU Treaty to act towards achieving a closer Union, and therefore it is "no wonder" it overrides national competences, he argues. more...
| EU/UN / 4th Kingdom |


7.0 Magnitude Earthquake Hits off Vanuatu Xinhuanet (September 9, 2008) - A strong earthquake measuring 7.0 on the Richter scale struck off the coast of the South Pacific island nation of Vanuatu early Tuesday, the U.S. Geological Survey reported. No tsunami warning was issued by the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center and there were no immediate reports of casualties or damage. The quake, which occurred at 05:52 a.m. Tuesday Vanuatu local time (19:52 GMT Monday), was centered about 225 km north of Luganville on the island of Santo, northern Vanuatu, at a depth of121.8 km. Another quake of 6.6 magnitude was recorded on Monday.
| Earth Changes |


Brussels approves GMO bean despite public fears EU Observer (September 9, 2008) - The European Union has approved the import of a strain of genetically modified soybean, a move announced on Monday (8 September) by the European Commission. The bean, which bears the moniker A25704-12 and was developed by German biotechnology firm Bayer Cropscience, is now authorised to be brought to Europe to be used in food or animal feed for the next 10 years. The decision was arrived at by the EU's executive, the commission, after ministers from the EU member states could not come to an agreement on the subject. When ministers are blocked over approval of a particular genetically modified product, the decision passes over to the commission. Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) are a sensitive topic in Europe. While a strong majority of European citizens have concerns about such biotechnology - with only 27 percent in favour of GM products according to a 2006 Eurobarometer poll, ministers themselves are sharply divided. The commission has repeatedly given its approval using this procedure, following the opinions of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). In August 2007, EFSA said that Bayer's A25704-12 soybean was safe for import, awarding the product a "positive safety assessment." The authority has long been accused of being biased in favour of the biotech industry, both by environmental groups and by certain EU member states, who say the body gives its OK to GMOs without the required research. Anti-GMO campaigners complain that EFSA bases its investigations on data provided by the GM industry itself. It has always declared any GM crops it has studied to be safe. The crop is to be planted widely across the United States next year. Without such authorisation, farmers in the 27-country bloc would not have been able to purchase soybeans due to contamination worries. Soybeans are commonly used for the protein they add to animal feed.
| EU/UN / 4th Kingdom | Health Watch |


Russia proposes closer ties with OPEC AFP (September 9, 2008) - Russian Vice Premier Igor Sechin reached out to OPEC late Tuesday, calling for greater cooperation between the cartel and his country in a move linked by some analysts to the Georgia-Russia conflict. Sechin, who is chairman of Russia's biggest Russian oil group Rosneft, said a "draft memorandum of understanding" had been submitted to the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries on closer cooperation between Russia and the group. "Cooperation with OPEC is one of the priorities of Russia," he said, according to a statement read out at the opening of a meeting of OPEC's 13 members here. He underscored that OPEC powerhouse Saudi Arabia and Russia were the largest oil producers in the world -- they are number one and two measured by output -- and referred to the "ambitious potential" of cooperation with the cartel. The timing of the visit to OPEC by such a senior Russian official is likely to raise eyebrows in consumer nations as relations between Moscow and the West deteriorate in the aftermath of the Russia-Georgia conflict in August. Any closer cooperation would vastly increase the market power of OPEC, which already pumps 40 percent of world oil, and would cause worries about the collective influence of the world's dominant oil producers. British Prime Minister Gordon Brown warned at the end of August that the West would not be held to ransom by hydrocarbon-rich Russia and urged Europe to find alternative sources of power to avoid "an energy stranglehold." Independent analyst John Hall, who runs an energy consultancy in London, said the move by Russia could be seen as part of a strategy by Moscow to find political allies after its military action in Georgia. "Russia is under pressure at from the US and European Union and is looking for allies around the world and it would strengthen its position to have an alignment with OPEC," he told AFP. Russia already has close ties with OPEC members Iran and Venezuela, who are also at odds with the United States. It has also lent support to the idea of a "gas OPEC", causing alarm in the European Union. David Kirsch, head of the market intelligence service at US-based energy consultancy PFC Energy, said Sechin's appearance was highly significant. "Sending Sechin here sends a strong signal about cooperation between OPEC and Russia," he said. "The statement is clear that Russia has its legitimate interests and will pursue them in energy markets." Sechin said part of the cooperation with OPEC would include providing for a "stable pricing environment" for producers and consumers. more...
| Islam | Gog/Magog |


Turkey alarmed by Russian 'imperialism' WorldNet Daily (September 8, 2008) - North Atlantic Treaty Organization member Turkey is expressing alarm about Russia's military advance into Georgia territory because of the possibility of a return of the historic Russo-Turkish conflicts over sea lanes as well as the new potential conflict over energy, according to a report from Joseph Farah's G2 Bulletin. In recent years Turkey has defended Georgia's efforts to maintain sovereignty over its territories in South Essetia and Abkhazia, into which Russian military forces have advanced. Turkey previously provided Georgia with military aid and training. But officials now have expressed alarm, because Turkey gets two-thirds of its oil and natural gas from Russia and faces the possible use of that lever when Russian ships want access to Turkish waters between the Black Sea and the Mediterranean. Additionally, the initial hesitancy of the West, especially the United States, to react strongly to the Russian invasion reportedly has brought about doubt in Turkey over western backing to provide alternative energy sources should Russia cut its energy supplies. For Turkey, the latest events in Georgia are reminiscent of a past that led to a series of Russo-Turkish conflicts that culminated in 1878. It was a period that saw an imperial Russia extending its authority by territorial conquest. In fact, the Russo-Turkish wars began in the 16th century and pitted Russia against the Ottoman Empire are considered the longest conflicts in European history. The last Russo-Turkish war was prompted by Russia's efforts to extend its economic and political power in other countries to recover territorial losses suffered during the Crimean War of 1854-1856 and re-establish itself in the Black Sea. In the 1820s, Turkey had begun to lose territory to Russia until the West realized the extent of the loss of the Ottoman Empire to Russian expansionism. It then became clear to the West that the Ottoman Empire couldn't even put down a Russian-backed revolt in southern Greece. The European powers at the time, Britain and France, sided to give Greece its independence. Greece thereby became the first independent country created out of the Ottoman Empire. This action had the effect of impeding Russian aspirations for bases on Russia's southern flank. At that time, the British feared Russian naval domination of the Mediterranean. Today, Turkey continues to control access from the Black Sea to the Mediterranean through two straits, the Dardanelles and the Bosporus. Together, they separate Europe from the Asian mainland. The Bosporus is a narrow strait near Istanbul that provides passage from the Black Sea to the Sea of Marmara which then connects to the Dardanelles strait into the Mediterranean. For those countries, such as Russia, which may want to move warships from the Black Sea to the Mediterranean, Turkey needs to give permission, especially for warships, including submarines. But Ankara also has more than $600 million invested in neighboring Georgia. Turkey has a major interest in maintaining a number of oil and natural gas pipelines that run through Georgia from Azerbaijan and then on to Europe. The expectation is that such assess to the oil and natural gas through these pipelines could lessen its two-thirds reliance on Russian energy supplies.

The question is, will Turkey move toward alliance with Russia because of energy concerns or move apart from Russia? I have a feeling that energy will rule the decision and if indeed Israel does something like attacking Damascus, Turkey will find itself more allied with Russia and Iran through the Muslim majority than with the West. Keep watching...

Ireland may consider EU defence opt-out to pass Lisbon Treaty Irish Times (September 8, 2008) - The government is exploring the possibility of opting out of European security and defence policy in an effort to make the Lisbon Treaty more palatable to the public. But Minister for Foreign Affairs Micheál Martin has admitted that this course of action would have serious consequences for the Defence Forces, and he is personally against it. "Irish troops have received praise across the board for the neutrality, objectivity and sensitivity with which they go about their task. It has helped our Defence Forces to modernise" he told journalists at an EU foreign ministers' meeting in Avignon, France. "We don't want to damage or undermine the capacity of the Irish Army to function as effective peacekeepers." A decision to opt out completely from European security policy would mean that the Defence Forces may not be able to take part in EU peacekeeping missions overseas, such as the operation in Chad. Mr Martin said isolation was no longer the way forward for countries such as Ireland, as there was an increasing interdependence between economic and security policies. "You cannot isolate the issues or categorise them as conveniently as some people would like us to do," he said. But he added the Government had to explore all the options open to it following the public's rejection of the Lisbon Treaty in June, and this was the reason his officials visited Copenhagen last month to assess the consequences of Denmark's decision in 1992 to completely opt out of EU defence. Another option the Government may consider is negotiating a declaration insisting that Irish people could never be conscripted into any future EU force. "Conscription as an issue isn't going to happen because of Lisbon, but the point is it raises the fact that people have concerns about the defence and military nature. So how do we deal with that is the question. Do we reassure people on conscription per se?" said Mr Martin. He added that most Irish people held a noble view of the Defence Forces' participation in EU missions. Any proposal to opt out of EU defence is likely to be opposed by the Defence Forces. Minister for Defence Willie O'Dea last night warned that a withdrawal from all EU military co-operation would have serious consequences for Ireland's future United Nations role. The UN is increasingly subcontracting peacekeeping missions to regional bodies, such as the EU - as has happened already in Chad. "We are very well-respected internationally because of our peacekeeping activities. Naturally, I would not like to se anything that would diminish that," Mr O'Dea told The Irish Times. He said that "nobody had approached" him with a proposal that Ireland should pull out of such military co-operation. The Government's decision to explore its role in EU security and defence policy coincides with a wider EU review of strategy. At the foreign ministers' meeting in Avignon, EU foreign affairs chief Javier Solana presented a paper outlining reforms to the EU's 2003 security strategy - the key document outlining the principles behind the EU's policy in the area. The discussion paper proposes a redraft of this strategy to add climate change, energy shortages and cybercrime as new threats to the security of the EU. Meanwhile, Minister for European Affairs Dick Roche will meet German foreign minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier today to update him on how Ireland intends to respond to its rejection of the Lisbon Treaty. He will tell a conference of German diplomats he believes the Irish people are gradually reflecting more on the possible consequences of their vote and how they might move ahead in a way that serves both their national interest and the interests of their EU partners.
| EU/UN / 4th Kingdom | NewWorldOrder |


Fannie and Freddie Glenn Beck (September 8, 2008) - Now, I've been doing some I've been doing homework on Freddie and Fannie for I don't know how long and I've been waiting for this day because I knew that if I presented this three, four months ago, nobody would really pay attention to it because everyone was denying that Freddie and Fannie were going to fall apart. Still everybody is in somewhat denial, everybody is saying, oh, this is only going to cost the American taxpayers you $200 billion. That is a lie. It's going to cost you a whole lot more than that. Some say up to $1.6 trillion. To give you some idea of how much money that is, the original remember, "Oh, my gosh, all of a sudden we are having problems with our financial sector." The original panic was that the banks might have to write down as much as $200 billion. That's what we're writing a check for today for Freddie and Fannie, out of your pocket. I told you at the time when everyone said, oh, it's going to be $200 billion. No, it's not. It's going to be in the trillions, it will at least start with $1 trillion. Now we are approaching a trillion dollars in the regular financial markets and this is going to cost you a trillion dollars. This one is costing you. Now, I want to know where is the outrage. I want to know where is the outrage from the press. Where is the outrage from congress. I'm going to ask three questions and then I'm going to give you the answers, and I ask you just to pay attention here for just a second because when you know the real story behind Freddie and Fannie, blood is going to shoot out of your eyes.

Here are the questions. Question one: Why aren't the CEOs of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac going to jail? Do you remember the name Ken Lay? Why aren't the CEOs and corporate executives required to give back, at the very minimum, give back the millions of dollars they put into their pockets while they inflated the results to meet their bonus triggers? I want to explain something here. What they did, what Freddie and Fannie did is they have these CEOs that said, oh, we're going to meet our budget. And if they met their budget, they get these big bonuses. Well, they would say that they met their budget and then they would get the bonuses but then they wouldn't meet their budget and they would come back later and say, oh, we had to readjust. No one, no one questioned them. I'm sorry. Members of the press like the Wall Street Journal questioned them. We had questioned them. But nobody else had questioned them. The question I have now is, why. Why. I'll explain in a second when I introduce you to the players. I won't even have to explain. You are going to say, oh, my gosh, you're kidding me.

Question number two: Why aren't the shareholders wiped out? Why is the federal government protecting the shareholders of Fannie and Freddie today? This isn't capitalism.

Question number three: Where's the end game? You know everybody always says in congress, especially the Democrats, "We want an end game. How come, you know, if you're going to go in for a war, you've got to know how to get out. Where's the strategy here? Where's the end game? What does victory look like?" I can tell you what victory looks like but nobody else is going to tell you this. They will all deny it, but it is not a coincidence today that they put a 15 month, pretty much just a 15 month Band Aid on this. What they've done is save these problems for the next congress and the next President. Why? I'll explain hopefully later on here. We'll get into a chance to do that but I'll explain in great detail on tomorrow's program and show you what congress is actually doing right now. They are setting us up right now.

Okay. First of all, first question: Where are the regulators? Where is everybody? Why isn't anyone going after this? This is from an article in The Wall Street Journal, 2004: For years mortgage giant Fannie Mae has produced smooth growing earnings and for years observers have wondered how Fannie could possibly manage its inherently risky portfolio without a whiff of volatility. Now thanks to Fannie's regulator, we now know the answer. The company was cooking the books big time. In 2004 the SEC began an investigation into Fannie Mae which led to restating of previously reported profits to the tune of $6.3 trillion. What happened when the regulators stepped in? $6.3 trillion. I'll give you a perspective on that here in a second.

When regulators stepped in, they fined them $400 million for that. Okay, let me give you the players. First one, Franklin Raines. Served as Clinton's director for the U.S. Management and Budget. He is now the CEO of Fannie Mae or I'm sorry, he was CEO until 2004. He served as the CEO from '99 to 2004. He took an early retirement while the SEC was investigating Fannie for accounting irregularities. Can you imagine if, while they were doing the investigation on Enron, if Ken Lay took an early retirement? Do you think anyone would have gotten up off of him?

They overstated under this guy, Franklin Raines, they overstated their earnings by $6.3 billion. Perspective: Do you remember how horrible things were with Enron? They overstated their earnings, Enron did, $567 million. Half a billion dollars as compared to $6.3 billion. The wheels of justice turn pretty slowly, but eventually they do turn. This year Franklin Raines settled a government lawsuit against him and, boy, we taught him a lesson. Listen to what we taught him. The headlines read that Rains agreed to $24.7 million settlement to have all of the charges dismissed, okay? So in other words, you can get out of it if you pay a penalty. You don't have to go to jail. You don't even have to have your name wrecked. Nobody even knows the name Franklin Raines. Nobody even knows he's one of the guys who caused all of this.

He got off for $24.7 in a settlement. However, we looked into the settlement. The agreement includes forfeiting stock options worth $15.6 million at the time they were issued. At the time they were issued, they were worth $77.10. He could buy the options allowed him to buy shares for $77. The stock is at $9 a share. He's not even he wouldn't exercise those options. Why would you buy $9 stock for $77? It's ridiculous. But we punished him. He can no longer buy that $9 stock for $77. Then he had to also pay $2 million to the federal government. Okay, so we get $2 million out of the guy, right? No, no, no, no. The $2 million, again if you look into it, is paid by you. It is paid by Fannie Mae's insurance policy for something like this. So you've been paying for the insurance policy so this guy doesn't have to pay the $2 million to the government.

Now, he also had to give up another $1.8 million in stock. It's going to be donated to programs aimed at assisting financially strapped homeowners. So this is you know, $1.8 million that he has in stock, the only thing he's got left, $1.8 million in stock and we're going to give that now to people who are financially strapped. Unfortunately again if you read the fine print and care to do your homework on this, that $1.8 million of stock, he doesn't even own. He was suing Fannie Mae for the $1.8. He said that's mine. They said, no, it's not. Yes, it is. No, it's not, yes, it is. All right, you got me, I'm going to say no, it's not. He didn't even own the $1.8. Now we're also told that he has agreed to part with $5.3 million in other unspecified benefits. I'd like to specify those. Could we get anyone in congress, can anyone on Capitol Hill? It's my money! Can anyone on Capitol Hill ask Mr. Reins, could you specify that for me, please?

Then we have James Johnson, former CEO of Fannie Mae. You know, this guy, because he was selected by Obama to head the vice presidential search committee when the news broke that he may have received preferential loan rates for his personal loans through Countrywide. That's another scandal. By the way, Obama threw this guy under the bus. What you may not have known is Mr. Johnson was the former chief of staff to vice president Walter Mondale and during his tenure accounting results were manipulated so that executives could earn larger bonuses. The accounting manipulation of 98 resulted in the maximum payoffs and payouts to Fannie Mae's senior executives. He personally got $1.9 million. So in other words, what happened was they cooked the books under this guy again, so that way they could get the maximum bonuses. If you look back and we did. If you look back at the bonus charts, these guys never, ever missed a bonus. But there's some way you never ever hit the bonus. They got the money but they never actually accomplished anything. Your government tax dollars at work. By the way, Franklin Raines, he is entitled to his monthly pension and he is taking his monthly pension from you of $114,393 for the rest of his life and for the life of his spouse, should she survive him. Fantastic.

Monthly, $114,000. He gets free medical and dental coverage for the rest of his life, for his wife, too, and his children until the age of 21. He gets free life insurance in the amount of $5 million until the age 60 and then $2.5 million after that. It's unclear how much of these benefits, if any of them, are in those unspecified damages.

James Johnson, post employment inflation consulting contract of $390,500 that began in 2002. He also gets two employees and a chauffeur, office space at the Watergate Hotel. He even began work at an investment firm that gave him his own office. It's been reported that Johnson was supposed to reimburse the company for 50% of the chauffeur's time, but that didn't apply to the time spent waiting for him or driving his wife around. He has, by the way, reimbursed Fannie for about 15% of that cost. On March 17th, 2005, Fannie Mae was engulfed in an accounting scandal. Johnson contacted board member Steven B. Ashley and said, "I should do my part to assist Fannie Mae's efforts to reduce spent tours at this difficult time." He temporarily reduced his consulting fees, which he had increased to $600,000 a year, and he decided to end his support staff and driver. No update on whether he's rescinded that deal and is getting by the way, who else works for Fannie Mae? How about this one, Jack Quinn, Esquire. Clinton appointee, he's a board member. He was the attorney working for the pardon for Mark Rich. How about Jamie Gorelick, Janet Reno's Justice Department who served on 9/11 commission. Gorelick, Gorelick, Gorelick, oh, she's the one who built the wall between the CIA and the FBI so they couldn't communicate. Remember her from 9/11? The compensation packages for Enron executives like Andy Fastow were similar to the Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the CEO Franklin Raines bonuses. Fastow raked in $37 million. Do you remember what an evil dude he was? According to Business Week, Fannie had paid its top 20 executives combined $245 million in bonuses. Rains made $25.6 million in incentive pay, including stock options. $37 million for Fastow. $25 million for Rains. One is evil. One should be in prison for the rest of their life. One destroyed grandma and grandpa's savings. The other is is not that bad. You probably don't even know his name.

By the way, during all of this, when all of this was when the mortgage meltdown began, the total compensation package comes in at $18 million for Freddie Mac. The CEOs total compensation comes in at over $11 million for Fannie Mae. That's why all of this, that's why all of this is happening.

Now, let me ask the media. Where are you on this? Where are you? We did an LexisNexis search. 3,000 hits on Enron from the time the story first broke and that goes through the following nine months. 3,000 stories. During that nine month time period, Enron disclosed that it had overstated its earnings by $567 since 1997, that key several figures in the embattled company testified under congress under subpoena. A similar LexisNexis search we have done with the term Fannie Mae, for those same media outlets, from the day the story broke in the following nine months. The results? 3,000 hits for Enron. 37 for Fannie Mae. Fannie Mae was asked by its regulator to revamp its accounting, key executives resigned, and $11 billion in accounting errors were revealed. $11 billion as opposed to $567 million. Why were there only 37 matches for Enron's 3,000? Broadcast news wall to wall coverage of the endless commas and zeroes behind the Enron collapse. Fannie Mae's staggers problems and the resignation of six top executives including the CEO, Chief Financial Officer, no virtually no TV coverage. Where's the media? Where was the media then? Where was the media today?

Do you remember Enron with all the stories about the employees and the stockholders that lost everything, they couldn't retire anymore, they had to get a second job, all the people who had Enron stock in their 401(k), they are never going to be able to retire? Fannie and Freddie? Fannie and Freddie have lost almost all of their stock value. At the time we put this piece together, we started putting this piece together about two months ago, they had lost 70% of their value over the last year. Where is the media concern now? It doesn't fit their agenda. "We don't like to talk about these new little organization attentions that merge capitalism with the government. We don't like that. We don't want to think that anybody in the government, you know, is not capable of running an airline or a healthcare system or oil companies." God forbid we ever see the incompetence, God forbid we ever see how much money has been stolen from us in the middle of the night, except they didn't have to do it in the middle of the night. They do it in broad daylight. All of the facts and figures are all there. For some reason, though, nobody wants to look at it.
| NewWorldOrder | America | Economic Crisis |

So if the government bails out Fannie and Freddie, does that mean the Government now owns the loans on the land here in the US?

Israel considers paying settlers to leave West Bank VOA News (September 7, 2008) - In a sign of progress in Middle East peace talks, Israel is considering a plan to lure Jewish settlers away from the occupied West Bank. Robert Berger reports from the VOA bureau in Jerusalem. For the first time, Israel's Cabinet discussed a plan to compensate Jewish settlers in the West Bank if they leave their homes voluntarily. Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said Israel is engaged in ongoing, serious peace talks with the Palestinians, and it is clear that settlements will be dismantled under an emerging agreement. Therefore, he said, Israel must be prepared to take the necessary steps to provide alternative housing for the settlers. Israel has reportedly offered the Palestinians about 93 percent of the West Bank, which means that dozens of isolated settlements would be evacuated. Under the compensation offer, each settler family would receive about $280,000 to move back to Israel. The Cabinet did not vote on the plan and some ministers expressed opposition. Cabinet Minister Rafi Eitan said settlers should not be removed from their homes until a peace deal is final, and proposing it now weakens Israel's position in negotiations. Settlement leaders are furious, saying the government has not learned the lessons of the Israeli pullout from the Gaza Strip three years ago, when 21 Jewish communities were dismantled. Israel Meidad lives in the West Bank settlement of Shilo. "It is impossible for the people who want to achieve peace and security for Israel to see how that can be done with the current situation of withdrawal, yielding up and surrendering of territory," said Meidad. Since the withdrawal from Gaza, Palestinians there have fired thousands of rockets at Israel. And the settlers say the same thing will happen in the West Bank, if Israel pulls out.
| Israel | Islam | Dividing the Land |


Solana to reveal his updated European Security Strategy UE2008.fr (September 5, 2008) - The Friday afternoon working session (14.30-18.00) will be dedicated to a debate on the future of relations between the European Union and the United States, notably in terms of major international issues ranging from regional crises to global challenges. Bernard Kouchner will hold a press conference with Javier Solana, the High Representative for the Common Foreign and Security Policy, and the European Commissioner for External Relations and European Neighbourhood Policy, Benita Ferrero Waldner, on 5 September at 18.00. During the Saturday morning working session (9.30 – 12.30), the ministers will examine the Georgian crisis, in the wake of the extraordinary European Council meeting of 1 September. More specifically, they will consider the European Union’s involvement in Georgia in terms of humanitarian aid, reconstruction and a political settlement. Against this backdrop, ministers will also raise relations between the European Union and Russia in view of the forthcoming EU-Russia Summit scheduled for 14 November 2008. Javier Solana will present his ideas on the updating of the European Security Strategy at the end of the morning session. The working lunch will be devoted to the Middle East Peace Process and the European Union's role in this region. The European Commissioner for Enlargement, Olli Rehn, and Jacek Saryusz-Wolski, Chairman of the European Parliament's Foreign Affairs Committee, will participate in this discussion, which will also be attended by Axel Poniatowski, Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committees of the French National Assembly. The foreign ministers from the three candidate countries (Croatia, Turkey, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia), will take part in some of the morning’s discussions. The Presidency’s concluding press conference will be held at 14.30. The Gymnich takes place once every six months and takes its name from the German castle in which the very first European Union foreign ministers' meeting was held in 1974 under the German Presidency. This informal meeting, inasmuch as it allows participants to engage in free and detailed exchange, does not produce conclusions but enables better preparation of European diplomatic positions over the months to come.
| EU/UN / 4th Kingdom | Solana | NewWorldOrder |


Syria makes peace proposal to Israel Associated Press (September 4, 2008) - Syria's leader said Thursday he offered a proposal for peace with Israel but also refused to break off ties with Hezbollah and militant Palestinians — a key Israeli demand. President Bashar Assad also said indirect negotiations with Israel were on hold until that country chooses a new prime minister and that direct talks would have to wait until a new U.S. president takes office. Assad's comments came after meetings with France's leader and regional mediators in talks focusing on Mideast peace and Iran's nuclear program. France hopes that warmer relations with Syria, Iran's ally, could help the West in its efforts to persuade Iran to curb its nuclear program. Assad said his proposal for Israel was intended to serve as a basis for direct talks. He said he would wait for a similar document laying out Israel's positions before any face-to-face talks. So far, negotiations between the two foes have been held indirectly through Turkish mediators. Although Assad didn't divulge details of his proposal, the move reflected a desire to break with Syria's past policies. The quest was given a boost by France's President Nicolas Sarkozy, who visited Damascus on Wednesday and Thursday, becoming the first Western leader in several years to come to Syria. Sarkozy has encouraged face-to-face Syria-Israel negotiations and offered to sponsor such talks in the future. The French president has been trying to forge better relations with both Syria and Libya, a longtime international pariah that has significantly improved ties with the West. Assad and Sarkozy were joined Thursday in a four-way summit by Turkey's prime minister and the leader of Qatar, a key broker in inter-Arab disputes, to discuss Mideast stability and peace. Washington made clear it expects more from Syria before any warming of ties. "Overall what we'd like to see out of Syria is for it to play a much more productive role in the region. It hasn't until now. We'd like to see it not meddle in the affairs of the sovereign government of Lebanon," State Department spokesman Robert Wood said. He said the U.S. "would like to see" Syria reach a peace with Israel and establish diplomatic relations. In an interview with French television, Assad ruled out any recognition of Israel before a peace deal. But "when there is a peace accord, of course there will be reciprocal recognition. This is natural," he said. Syria and Israel have held four rounds of indirect talks through Turkish mediation in the last year. Assad said at the summit that in the peace proposal, given to Turkish mediators, Syria outlined six points on the issue of the "withdrawal line" — a reference to the extent of an Israeli withdrawal from the Golan Heights. In Israel, an official said contacts were already being made to set up more talks. He said Israel has a "genuine intention to reach an agreement." The official declined to be identified because the diplomatic efforts are ongoing. Israeli officials have insisted that Syria also must end its support for militant groups opposed to Israel, namely Hezbollah in Lebanon and the Palestinian Hamas and the Islamic Jihad. But Assad on Thursday sought to reassure the groups that he would continue to back what he described as the "resistance" against Israeli occupation. "We don't see any interest in abandoning the resistance," he told Hezbollah's Al-Manar television. "Our position has always been clear. Our position toward the resistance against any occupation in Iraq, Lebanon and Palestine is firm and has not changed." more...
| Israel | Islam | EU/UN / 4th Kingdom |


Freak hailstorm turns part of tropical Kenya white Reuters (September 3, 2008) - A huge hailstorm turned parts of central Kenya white, thrilling residents most of whom had never experienced such conditions, officials said on Wednesday. Hailstorms are usual in some parts of Kenya, which straddles the equator, but the ferocity of the storm in Busara, 255 km (158 miles) northwest of the capital was unprecedented. Excited villagers pelted each other with snowballs while some ate pieces of the icy sheet that formed over an entire hillside. "We thought a big white sheet had been spread, so we decided to come and see for ourselves. We thought that it was Jesus who had come back," one villager told reporters. Kenya's Meteorological Department said Tuesday's storm was caused by the convergence of cold air currents from the Indian Ocean and warm air currents from the Congo. "The hailstones falling on the ground joined together to form expansive sheets of ice or snow flakes occupying a large area, 30 acres," a statement by the meteorologists said. More than 12 hours after the storm, the forested hillside was still white despite the hot tropical sun. "In fact this thing is very sweet, we have never seen anything like this. We like the ice so much because with the sun being hot, you take it and you feel satisfied," resident Simon Kimani said. The only snow to be seen in normally sunny Kenya is on top of the country's highest mountain, 5,199-metre (17,057 ft) Mount Kenya.
| Earth Changes |


Syria warns of 'catastrophic' effect of any Israeli strike on Iran Breitbart.com (September 2, 2008) - Syrian President Bashar al-Assad warned Tuesday that an attack by Israel on Iran would have catastrophic consequences for the entire world. "We think that Israel could try to launch attacks against Iran, even against Lebanon or Syria," he said in an interview with France 3 television. "Any attack by Israel or by anyone else will have catastrophic results not only on the region but on the whole world," he said. In recent months several Israeli politicians have talked of the possibility of a preemptive military strike against Iranian nuclear facilities to avoid any possibility of Tehran acquiring an atomic weapon. Iran has responded by threatening retaliatory strikes with its Shahab-3 missiles which have a nominal range of 2,000 kilometres (1,250 miles) -- enough to reach Israel.
| Iran | Israel | Islam | Isaiah 17 | Gog/Magog |


Israel foils 5 attempted abductions by Hizbullah YNet News (September 2, 2008) - Defense establishment, with assistance of foreign intelligence agencies, successfully hinders attempts to kidnap Israeli businessmen in Europe, West Africa, US, South America and Asia. The Israeli defense establishment has been able to foil five attempted kidnappings of Israeli businessmen, operating aboard, by Hizbullah, Yedioth Ahronoth reported Tuesday. A senior security source told the paper that "this was a concentrated effort by Hizbullah, backed by Iran, to carry out kidnappings in retaliation for the assassination of top Hizbullah operative Imad Mugniyah. "Hizbullah," he said, "is scouring for prey, and it's going country by county." Israel has reportedly been able to intercept such attempts in Europe, West Africa, the US, South America and Asia, where Hizbullah relies on local Shiite communities for assistance. All the attempted were foiled with the assistance of foreign intelligence agencies, who are acutely aware of Hizbullah and Iran's declared vendetta. The defense establishment has apparently cautioned several prominent businessmen, who travel extensively, of such attempts. "We're working under the assumption that there may be an attempt to kidnap them, but there very well may be an attempt on their lives. We're monitoring this situation very closely," said the security source. "Several businessmen owe their lives and their freedom to this emergency operation; which was largely facilitated thanks to the cooperation we received from various foreign intelligence agencies." The American media reported recently of several attempts made by Hizbullah sleeper-cells in the US to target Jewish institutions in the US and Canada. The Foreign Ministry and the Shin Bet have also recalled several Israeli emissaries from countries deemed to have a volatile security situation. Security sources told Yedioth Ahronoth that Israel is equally concerned about known Hamas' intentions to abduct soldiers, in at attempt to shift the balance of power in any future negotiation for the release of Palestinian prisoners. Hamas operates under the assumption that kidnapping more Israeli soldiers would enable it to double, if not triple, the price for the release if kidnapped IDF soldier Gilad Shalit, leaving Israel virtually powerless to refuse. The Counter Terrorism Bureau issued a rare, worldwide travel advisory for Israelis recently, warning of possible attempts by Hizbullah to kidnap or harm Israelis abroad.
| Iran | Israel | Islam |


Israeli-Syrian peace talks postponed The Jerusalem Post (September 1, 2008) - French President Nicolas Sarkozy is scheduled to visit Damascus on Wednesday, a trip Israel had an indirect role in making possible because of its indirect talks with Syria, at a time when - ironically - the Israel-Syria track seems frozen. Turkish sources said Monday that there was no new date scheduled for the fifth round of indirect talks in Turkey between Syrian and Israeli negotiating teams, a round that was originally scheduled for last week, then postponed until this week, and now tentatively set for next week. Turkish sources told The Jerusalem Post last week that it was likely that the talks would be postponed until after Sarkozy's two-day trip to Damascus. The Syrians have expressed interest in US and French co-sponsorship of the talks, something which Sarkozy would like to see. In a speech to French ambassadors last week, Sarkozy said it was because Syria knew that France had excellent relations with Israel and the US that "Damascus wanted France to shoulder this unprecedented responsibility in due time." He said this would be discussed during his visit. The US, meanwhile, has shown no interest in involvement. Sarkozy's visit will be the first by a French leader to Damascus since former president Jacques Chirac cut ties with Syria following the assassination in February 2005 of former Lebanese prime minister Rafik Hariri, a close friend of Chirac. Diplomatic officials have said that Israel's decision to hold indirect talks with Syria gave a certain degree of "diplomatic cover" for Sarkozy to make overtures to Assad, with the argument being that if it was okay for Jerusalem to talk with the Syrians, then it was also okay for France. Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan is also scheduled to visit Damascus this week, expected to visit there on Thursday, the day that Sarkozy leaves. This has led to speculation that Erdogan wants to ensure that Turkey maintains its central role in the Israel-Syria talks. Turkish sources, however, said that the hastily scheduled Erdogan visit was likely connected more to the Russian-Georgian crisis, than to the Israeli-Syrian track. Turkey's decision to allow US warships through the Bosporus Straits to the Black Sea was slammed by Russia, and Moscow's displeasure was translated into long delays for Turkish exporters at the Russian border. Turkey hit back Monday, subjecting Russian imports into Turkey to additional searches. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is scheduled to arrive in Istanbul on Tuesday for a meeting that will focus on the rising tensions, and Erdogan's visit to Damascus - which is supporting Russia in its conflict with Georgia - is expected to focus on that issue. more...
| Israel | Islam | Isaiah 17 | Gog/Magog |


Solana: EU plans civilian mission in Georgia Xinhuanet (September 1, 2008) - The European Union (EU) is planning to deploy a civilian mission in Georgia to help monitor the ceasefire, EU top diplomat Javier Solana said on Monday. "I hope very much that by the next (summit) on the 15th of October, we will have all the decisions finalized" for the mission, he told reporters before a special EU summit on Georgia. A fact-finding mission of about 40 people are currently on the ground, Solana said. "We would like to have a new mission deployed soon" across areas controlled by Georgian troops to see that a France-brokered ceasefire agreement was properly implemented after the Georgia-Russia conflict over South Ossetia, he added. "It will be a mission in the hundreds, not a huge one," Solana said, adding that the Monday summit and an informal meeting of foreign ministers later this week will discuss the civilian mission and a plan to send peacekeepers. Georgia would expect the EU peacekeepers to replace Russian troops in South Ossetia and Abkhazia, where Russian peacekeepers have been present since an outbreak of violence in the early 1990s. However, the EU can not deploy military peacekeepers in the regions without a UN Security Council resolution. Russia, which has a veto power in the Council, has rejected such a notion. Last week, Moscow recognized the independence of the two breakaway Georgian regions, a move that has drawn strong condemnation from the West. Solana said he would soon go to Moscow and Tbilisi, capital of Georgia, to see how the EU could help settle the crisis.
| Gog/Magog | EU/UN / 4th Kingdom | Solana |

Summary of remarks by Javier SOLA9A, EU High Representative for the CFSP, after the meeting with Lado GURGE9IDZE, Prime Minister of Georgia


America's demonization next step in New World Order? Old-Thinker News (August 27, 2008) - Georgia is the graveyard of America's unipolar world

"Why that should be so isn't hard to understand. It's not only that the US and its camp followers have trampled on international law and the UN to bring death and destruction to the Middle East, Afghanistan and Pakistan... For the rest of us, a new assertiveness by Russia and other rising powers doesn't just offer some restraint on the unbridled exercise of global imperial power, it should also increase the pressure for a revival of a rules-based system of international relations."

Related: Australian paper proclaims: A New World Order as U.S. prosperity falls

After the recent Georgian incursion into South Ossetia, discussion has been rampant regarding America's influence and dominance on the world scene. Some are proclaiming that Russia has laid to rest aspirations for a so called New World Order. From one angle this may appear to be the case, but there is a bigger picture needs to be examined. The United States is going to - and to a degree already is - be held up as an example of why "global mechanisms" and a "world structure" need to be in place to prevent such actions as the invasion of Iraq and U.S. support of Georgian forces in the invasion of South Ossetia. We've been presented with a problem, now globalist think tanks and organizations like the Council on Foreign Relations will provide us with a solution. National sovereignty has no place in this era, so we're told. We must "share power". Former President of the Soviet Union, Mikhail Gorbachev, has stated that he sees the U.S. led Iraq war as an example of the need for a "new world order" to manage the globe.

"Look at the US in Iraq, everybody was opposed, even their allies, but they did not listen and what happened? They do not know how to get out of it now. Now we understand that... we are all linked to the US and if it falls apart it would be a real collapse. We have to help them to get out of there. That means that cooperation is needed, a new world order is necessary and global mechanisms to manage it."

Turkish President Abdullah Gul has made similar statements recently in response to the Georgia-Russia conflict. As the AFP reports,

"Turkish President Abdullah Gul predicted "a new world order" of joint international action, in an interview published in the U.K. on Saturday... He added that the conflict in Georgia shows the U.S. can no longer shape global politics on its own, and that it should start sharing power with other nations."

The 2008 election gives us an idea of the current trends underway and provides a window into the establishment's long term game-plan. Both Barack Obama and John McCain have openly indicated that globalist policy will be pursued if either of them are elected president. John McCain discussed his proposed "League of Democracies" at the Hoover institution in May of 2007. McCain stated in part,

"This League of Democracies would not supplant the United Nations or other international organizations. It would complement them. But it would be the one organization where the world's democracies could come together to discuss problems and solutions on the basis of shared principles and a common vision of the future. If I am elected president, I will call a summit of the world's democracies in my first year to seek the views of my democratic counterparts and begin exploring the practical steps necessary to realize this vision."

Barack Obama made his globalist stance known during his highly publicized speech in Berlin on July 24th. He said,

"Yes, there have been differences between America and Europe. No doubt, there will be differences in the future. But the burdens of global citizenship continue to bind us together. A change of leadership in Washington will not lift this burden. In this new century, Americans and Europeans alike will be required to do more -- not less. Partnership and cooperation among nations is not a choice; it is the one way, the only way, to protect our common security and advance our common humanity... In this new world, such dangerous currents have swept along faster than our efforts to contain them. That is why we cannot afford to be divided. No one nation, no matter how large or powerful, can defeat such challenges alone."

The more sophisticated branch of globalist elites who see the route to power through slower, deliberate and incremental steps are now making their move. The aggressive Neocons have served their purpose and are making the establishment nervous with further provocative actions. The corruption and wars that have tarnished the American people's name will now be used to further the aims of the global elite. America's demonization, and in turn its use as an example of the necessity of global governance, may very well be the next stage of the establishment's plan for world government.
| EU/UN / 4th Kingdom | NewWorldOrder | America |

It is increasingly becoming the status quo that a globalized world is the only way. Both presidential candidates hold this view and according to the Bible, it is the inevitable end. However the Biblical version is not as pretty as the globalists try to paint it today. How will we get from their vision to Biblical reality? I believe fear and the desire for peace and safety will be used to direct the world toward the ultimate end according to scripture. The New Age Movement has a goal of bringing all belief to an ecumenical position that excludes what are termed exclusionary and fundamentalist. Already there is the Alliance of Civilizations working with religions around the world from apostate Christianity to Buddhist and everything in between to essentially remove the fundamentalist aspects from all belief systems and label those who refuse as incompatible with the new age of peace they are trying to build on earth. Those who remain true to God's Word, which says that Yeshua is the only way to salvation will become more and more shunned and those who agree in rejecting the Truth will band together against those who refuse to conform. Perhaps you think I go a little too far, but remember that according to the Bible the ultimate end of a global government is centered around worship of a New Age Christ, a false Messiah who the world will adore while rejecting the God of Love because they had no love for the Truth.
John 14:23-29
Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him. He that loveth me not keepeth not my sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father's which sent me. These things have I spoken unto you, being yet present with you. But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you. Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. Ye have heard how I said unto you, I go away, and come again unto you. If ye loved me, ye would rejoice, because I said, I go unto the Father: for my Father is greater than I. And now I have told you before it come to pass, that, when it is come to pass, ye might believe.
John 15:12-22
This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you. Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you. Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you. Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you. These things I command you, that ye love one another. If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you. Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also. But all these things will they do unto you for my name's sake, because they know not him that sent me. If I had not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no cloak for their sin.

Young Adults and Liberals Struggle with Morality Xinhuanet (August 25, 2008) - American society has become more intrigued by moral issues in recent years, as evidenced by the fact that 55% of adults discuss moral issues with others during a typical week. But a nationwide survey by The Barna Group indicates that Americans have also redefined what it means to do the right thing in their own lives. Researchers asked adults which, if any, of eight behaviors with moral overtones they had engaged in during the past week. The behaviors included exposure to pornography, using profanity in public, gambling, gossiping, engaging in sexual intercourse with someone to whom they were not married, retaliating against someone, getting drunk, and lying. A majority of adults had engaged in at least one of those eight behaviors during the past week. The most common of the eight behaviors evaluated was using profanity in public. Nearly three out of every ten adults (28%) admitted to using such language. Two out of every ten adults (20%) had gambled in the past week (including the purchase of a lottery ticket) and almost as many (19%) admitted to intentional exposure to pornographic images. Slightly more than one out of every ten adults had gossiped (12%), gotten drunk (12%), or lied (11%). The least common of the activities tested were having sexual intercourse with someone to whom the respondent was not married (9%) and 8% said they had engaged in some form of retaliation during the prior seven days. The survey showed that admission of adultery was far less common than was admission of sex among unmarried adults. Just 1% of married adults said they had sex with someone other than their spouse during the past week. In contrast, 21% of single adults indicated they had sex with someone during the prior week. One of the most stunning outcomes from the Barna survey was the moral pattern among adults under 25. The younger generation was more than twice as likely as all other adults to engage in behaviors considered morally inappropriate by traditional standards. Their choices made even the Baby Boomers - never regarded as a paragon of traditional morality - look like moral pillars in comparison. For instance, two-thirds of the under-25 segment (64%) had used profanity in public, compared to just one out of five Boomers (19%). The younger group - known as Mosaics - was nine times more likely than were Boomers to have engaged in sex outside of marriage (38% vs. 4%), six times more likely to have lied (37% vs. 6%), almost three times more likely to have gotten drunk (25% vs. 9%) and to have gossiped (26% vs. 10%), and twice as likely as Boomers to have observed pornography (33% vs. 16%) and to have engaged in acts of retaliation (12% vs. 5%). On average, adults who describe themselves as "mostly liberal" on sociopolitical issues were twice as likely as those who describe themselves as "mostly conservative" to participate in activities that conflict with traditional moral perspectives. In particular, liberals were five times more likely to participate in unmarried sex (20% vs. 4%), more than three times as likely to view pornography (30% vs. 8%), more than twice as likely to lie (21% vs. 8) and to get drunk (17% vs. 7%), and twice as likely to engage in retaliation (13% vs. 6%) and gossip (17% vs. 9%). Men were significantly more likely than women to engage in six of the seven behaviors evaluated. The biggest gaps between the genders related to getting drunk (22% of men had done so in the past week, compared to 3% of women), use of profanity in public (33% vs. 24%), and gambling (23% vs. 15%). Men were also twice as likely to have had sexual intercourse in the past week with someone to whom they were not married (13% vs. 6%). The only behavior more common among women was gossip. However, the margin of difference was not statistically significant. more...
| Signs of the Times |


Hizbullah-Iran-Syria-Lebanon Axis Tightens Israel National News (August 24, 2008) - Hizbullah leader Hassan Nasrallah warned Sunday his terrorist army is much stronger than before the Second Lebanon War and can destroy Israel. He issued the threat at a Boy Scout ceremony as a response to Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's remark last week that "if Lebanon becomes a Hizbullah state, then we won't have any restrictions" in striking the country. The Prime Minister claimed that during the last war, Israel did not use all of its firepower because the enemy was Hizbullah and not its host country Lebanon. Lebanese Prime Minister Fuad Siniora has sent United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon a letter protesting Olmert's remarks. Siniora, at a meeting with his Cabinet, accused Israel of "once again… threatening to launch a new attack on Lebanon, forgetting that the [Israeli] occupation was the core of the problem for Lebanon and the region." The flurry of threats and warnings came two days after a report in the Italian newspaper Corriere Della Sera that three Hizbullah leaders visited Russia in July to clinch a deal involving the purchase of anti-tank missiles and air-defense systems. Israel disclosed evidence during the Second Lebanon War that Hizbullah used advanced Russian anti-tank missiles smuggled from Syria, in violation of previous international agreements. Nasrallah said, in a speech televised by the Hizbullah-backed Al Manar satellite network, that his arsenal of weapons is so great that "the Zionists will think not one thousand times but tens of thousands of times before they attack Lebanon." The prospect of an Israeli attack on Iran's growing nuclear threat also played a hand in Hizbullah's latest threats. Mohammed Raad, the head of the terrorist party's political bloc in the Lebanese government, warned, "The first shot fired from the Zionist entity toward Iran will be met by a response of 11,000 rockets in the direction of the Zionist entity. This is what military leaders in the Islamic Republic [Iran] have confirmed." Hizbullah has become a stronger political force in Lebanon since the end of the war two summers ago, winning enough representation in the Cabinet to veto any major decisions. Syria, which aided Hizbullah in the Second Lebanon War, last week established diplomatic relations with Lebanon for the first time in history, providing Syrian President Bashar Assad with a stronger political base in Beirut's affairs after having withdrawn its military from Lebanon before the 2006 war. Syria has dominated Lebanese affairs for 30 years, and the West has joined Lebanese opponents of Syrian interference in Lebanese affairs in accusing Damascus of being behind the the 2005 assassination of anti-Syrian former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri. The new Lebanese government that gives Hizbullah more power assures Syria that it still can influence affairs in Lebanon, with the naming of Michel Suleiman as president. He is close to Syria and was the Lebanese army chief for 10 years during the Syrian army's control of the country. "It's a win-win situation," said Patrick Seale, a British expert on Syria told the Associated Press. "The Lebanese get diplomatic recognition and the Syrians get recognition of vital interests in Lebanon."
| Iran | Israel | Islam | Gog/Magog |