The New Old World Order
National Review Online (Link) - Victor Davis Hanson (September 2, 2010)
The post�Cold War New World Order is rapidly breaking apart. Nations are returning to the ancient passions, rivalries, and differences of past centuries.
Take Europe. The decades-old vision of a united pan-continental Europe without borders is dissolving. The cradle-to-grave welfare dream proved too expensive for Europe�s shrinking and aging population.
Cultural, linguistic, and economic divides between Germany and Greece, or Holland and Bulgaria, remain too wide to be bridged by fumbling bureaucrats in Brussels. NATO has devolved into a euphemism for American expeditionary forces.
Nationalism is returning, based on stronger common ties of language, history, religion, and culture. We are even seeing the return of a two-century-old European �problem:� a powerful Germany that logically seeks greater political influence commensurate with its undeniable economic superiority.
The tired Israeli-Palestinian fight over the future of the West Bank is no longer the nexus of Middle East tensions. The Muslim Arab world is now more terrified by the re-emergence of a bloc of old familiar non-Arabic, Islamic fundamentalist rivals.
With nuclear weapons, theocratic Iran wants to offer strategic protection to radical allies such as Syria, Hezbollah, and Hamas, and at the same time restore Persian glory. While diverse, this rogue bunch shares contempt for the squabbling Sunni Arab world of rich but defenseless Gulf petro-sheikdoms and geriatric state authoritarians.
Turkey is flipping back to its pre-20th-century past. Its departure from NATO is not a question of if, but when. The European Union used to not want Turkey; now Turkey does not want the shaky EU.
Turkish revisionism now glorifies the old Ottoman sultanate. Turkey wants to recharge that reactionary model as the unifier and protector of Islam � not the modern, vastly reduced secular state of Kemal Ataturk. Weak neighbors Armenia, Cyprus, Greece, and Kurdistan have historical reasons to tremble.
Japan�s economy is still stalled. Its affluent population is shrinking and aging. Elsewhere in the region, the Japanese see an expanding China and a lunatic nuclear North Korea. Yet Japan is not sure whether the inward-looking United States is still credible in its old promise of protection against any and all enemies.
One of two rather bleak Asian futures seems likely. Either an ascendant China will dictate the foreign policies of Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan, or lots of new freelancing nuclear powers will appear to deter China since it cannot count on an insolvent U.S. for protection.
Oil-rich Russia � deprived of its Communist-era empire � seems to find lost imperial prestige and influence by being for everything that the U.S. is against. That translates into selling nuclear expertise and material to Iran, providing weapons to provocative states such as Hugo Chavez�s Venezuela, and bullying neighbors over energy supplies.
Closer to home, Mexico has become a strange sort of friend. It devolves daily into a more corrupt and violent place than Iraq or Pakistan. The fossilized leadership in Mexico City shows no interest in reforming, either by opening its economy or liberalizing its political institutions.
Instead, Mexico�s very survival for now rests on cynically exporting annually a million of its impoverished and unhappy citizens to America. More interested in money than in its own people, the Mexican government counts on the more than $20 billion in remittances that return to the country each year.
But American citizens are tired of picking up the tab to subsidize nearly 15 million poor illegal aliens. The growing hostility between the two countries is reminiscent of 19th-century tensions across the Rio Grande.
How is America reacting to these back-to-the-future changes?
Politically divided, committed to two wars, in a deep recession, insolvent, and still stunned by the financial meltdown of 2008, our government seems paralyzed. As European socialism implodes, for some reason a new statist U.S. government wants to copy failure by taking over ever more of the economy and borrowing trillions more to provide additional entitlements.
As panicky old allies look for American protection, we talk of slashing our defense budget. In apologetic fashion, we spend more time appeasing confident enemies than buttressing worried friends.
Instead of finishing our border fence and closing the southern border, we are suing a state that is trying to enforce immigration laws that the federal government will not apply. And as sectarianism spreads abroad, we at home still pursue the failed salad bowl and caricature the once-successful American melting pot.
But just as old problems return, so do equally old solutions. Once-stodgy ideas like a free-market economy, strong defense, secure borders, and national unity are suddenly appearing fresh and wise.
I am by no means an expert in global politics but I also study Bible prophecy, which reveals a future that will come about regardless of how things may appear now. Some prophecies may not be absolutely clear, there is still much we can understand as events unfold.
It is still my belief that Europe will become unified. I believe any evidence to the contrary will make the unification of Europe even more amazing, especially if someone rises to the occasion to make it happen. As Hitler unified Germany under national socialism out of the despair of collapse so I believe international socialism, or some derivation thereof, will be the form of global governance that fuels the new world order rising from the ashes of the imminent collapse we�re going through now.
There is a belief growing that the fourth kingdom from which the man of sin will arise will be in the Middle East. While I remain open to that possibility, I�m not yet convinced of it.
I don�t believe the unification of Europe will be the only unification that will take place. Ultimately the whole world will be part of a new world order that will be controlled by the man of sin, the antichrist. While there is much that must happen between now and then, a March article from Asia News (This year US public debt could reach end game) some interesting facts were presented that I believe will contribute to the eventual fulfillment of this global governance.
By the end of 2010, the US Treasury will have to refinance US$ 2 trillion in short-term debt, plus additional deficit spending for this year, estimated to be around US$ 1.5 trillion (US$ 1.6 trillion today two months after the original article was published). Together, the US Treasury will need to borrow US$ 3.5 trillion (US$ 3.6 according to this writer) in just one year...
According to the author, the United States holds 8,133.5 metric tonnes of gold (the world�s largest holder). At November 2009 dollar values, that is about US$ 300 billion.5 The US strategic petroleum reserve shows a current total position of 725 million barrels. At current dollar prices, that is roughly US$ 58 billion worth of oil. According to the IMF, the US has US$ 136 billion in foreign currency reserves. Altogether, that is some US$ 500 billion in reserves (US$ 455.5 billion according to AsiaNews).
Foreigners hold 44 per cent of US$ two trillion short-term US debt; that is US$ 880 billion. Total domestic savings in the United States are only around US$ 600 billion annually. If the United States needs to sell US$ 3.5 trillion (or US$ 3.6 trillion) in Treasury bills, and all domestic savings combined are put into US Treasury debt, the United States will still fall short by nearly US$ 3 trillion. Where is the rest of the money going to come from?
The situation doesn�t look good for America and in my opinion there is an effort to collapse the system we have now so that a new one will arise from the ashes conforming more to the global governance model that I believe will be the center of power for the world. This isn�t a destruction of national identities, but rather a level of global governance that leaves identities in-tact with laws effectively designed and enforced from a global perspective. The debt issue will likely help to develop this centralization of power that will rise from the collapse. How exactly this will come about I don�t know, but that is what the watchman newsletter is trying to keep track of as it unfolds.
Israel & Islam
This area has many changes that will bring about many outcomes, ultimately leading to a Middle East and world that will be completely different from today. There are several main prophecies that are centered in the end times that seem incompatible, but I believe will progress through each one leading to the ultimate fulfillment in the abomination of desolation and the time of Jacob�s trouble. I�ll shortly present the sequence I believe possible in the near future.
I recommend reading Psalm 83 Revisited by Jack Kinsella. While the context of the beginning of the article hasn�t panned out to be the fulfillment he describes the players, which are the immediate surrounding Muslim nations. Many of these are actively working to foment war, stockpiling weapons and preparing armies. From the article:
�. . . Edom, and the Ishmaelites; of Moab, and the Hagarenes; Gebal, and Ammon, and Amalek; the Philistines with the inhabitants of Tyre; Assur also is joined with them: they have holpen the children of Lot.�
Let�s first identify the various players (with a hat tip to Bill Salus for much of the research)
Ishmael was the eponymous father of the Arabs, his brother Isaac being the father of the Jews. The Ishmaelites most probably refers to the Saudis, but that identification is admittedly speculative.
The Tents of Edom refers to the Palestinians of the West Bank and southern Jordan. The Moabites refers to the Palestinians and central Jordanians.
The Hagarites corresponds with Egypt, Gebal with Hezbollah and the Lebanese. Ammon includes the Palestinians and northern Jordanians, Phillistia corresponds with Hamas and the Gaza Strip.
Last but not least are Assyria (Syria and Kurdish Iraq) and Tyre, (Hezbollah and South Lebanon).
Persia -- modern Iran -- doesn�t make the list. Iran�s fingerprints are all over the battle plan, but the combatants are all Arabs. Iranians are Persians, not Arabs.
I believe we are seeing many of these alliances building and providing the means by which a war will be triggered in the Middle East. It may be this trigger, given Syria�s assistance in proving the weapons that triggers the next prophetic fulfillment.
�The burden of Damascus. Behold, Damascus is taken away from being a city, and it shall be a ruinous heap. The cities of Aroer are forsaken: they shall be for flocks, which shall lie down, and none shall make them afraid. The fortress also shall cease from Ephraim, and the kingdom from Damascus, and the remnant of Syria: they shall be as the glory of the children of Israel, saith the LORD of hosts. ... In that day shall his strong cities be as a forsaken bough, and an uppermost branch, which they left because of the children of Israel: and there shall be desolation.�
Will Israel cause the desolation of Damascus either as part of Psalm 83�s war or because of Syria�s arming for it? Several times in the past Israel has threatened to attack Damascus if Hizbullah attacks and Damascus is a center for terrorist activities. This leads to the next prophecy in the sequence.
Ezekiel 38, 39
These chapters lay out an alliance of Turkey, Russia, Iran, Libya and others attacking Israel from the North, presumably through Lebanon. What is interesting is that over the past several years, Syria and Iran have entered into a defense agreement essentially stating that if one is attacked the other will defend them. Likewise Turkey and Iran have gotten much closer and Russia has been supplying them all weapons and technology. After the Psalm 83 loss and the destruction of Damascus, the logical next step would then be for the alliances to come into effect and bring about the fulfillment of this prophecy.
While it seems odd that all this war would lead to the creation of a Palestinian state, this parallel push for peace by the world in the midst of war and the combination of God�s intervention on Israel�s behalf may be the catalyst that makes it all come together. The PA will realize it is powerless after all the wars are lost with Hamas and Hizbullah temporarily diminished and will finally agree to terms that will divide Israel and bring a false sense of peace.
�Behold, the day of the LORD cometh, and thy spoil shall be divided in the midst of thee. For I will gather all nations against Jerusalem to battle; and the city shall be taken, and the houses rifled, and the women ravished; and half of the city shall go forth into captivity, and the residue of the people shall not be cut off from the city.�
This chapter begins with a warning that the day of the LORD is coming, which I believe starts soon after the start of the time of great tribulation, it begins with the wrath of God. However I don�t believe it to be referring to the abomination of desolation because at that point the city of Jerusalem will have no Jews left. Anyone who doesn�t flee to the mountains will be killed and for the remainder of the time of great tribulation I believe this will be where the man of sin�s seat is.
Therefore I believe that this is referring to a global enforcement of the dividing of Israel to create a Palestinian state as is being discussed now. As we saw when Gaza was evacuated, once the Jews had been forcibly removed from their homes, Gaza was effectively overrun and disassembled by the new inhabitants. Imagine now with Israeli settlers having seen the results of the last time desiring to remain and a global enforcement of a peace agreement effectively dividing the city.
I also believe that part of this peace agreement will divide the Temple Mount and as some rumors have said, place this area under UN control, perhaps allowing for the rebuilding of the temple next to the Al-Aqsa Mosque.
The only prophetic aspect I�m currently watching from in Asia is the eventual rise of the prophesied 200 million man army. There is some debate on the origins of this army, but there are some aspects of a China-based army that make sense. With the limit on the number of children that can be had and the desire of boys over girls, there is a greater number of males to females that eliminates the chance of a family for many of the men when they grow older. This combined with the sheer numbers of people in China and the style of government, I think it is entirely possible to see an army of that size originate from this area.