Killer Flu Pandemic Feared

Killer Flu Pandemic Feared
Vol: 28 Issue: 31 Saturday, January 31, 2004

Killer Flu Pandemic Feared

Following weeks of denial, China officially confirmed bird flu cases in Hunan and Hubei provinces and that suspected cases were being investigated in Shanghai and in the provinces of Anhui and Guangdong. It did not identify the kinds of birds that had been found to be infected.

The announcement came three days after China confirmed its first case of bird flu, which was found in duck carcasses on a farm in the southern region of Guangxi.

Guangdong, near Hong Kong, is the province in which the earliest cases of what was to become known as severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) were reported in November 2002. Bird flu has been found in 10 Asian countries, and has so far killed 10 people in Vietnam and Thailand. Thailand exports large quantities of chicken to Europe.

If the virus mutates it might be possible for humans catching it to pass it on to other humans, threatening a flu pandemic.

Once a virus gets into a flock it is virtually impossible to control except by mass culling. That means that economic losses are large. It is suspected that Thai government has been hiding its outbreak of avian flu for months to protect its export trade.

A Dutch vet died last year, and now deaths are being confirmed around south-east Asia. It is the first time that a flu, common among chickens and other birds, has spread to people.

Humans catch avian flu from close contact with chickens or even eggshells containg bits of chicken, well, poop! (Sorry. I know some of you are having your breakfast)

World-health authorities worry that the virus might mate with the human influenza virus and, along with other viruses, could unleash a pandemic.

Assessment:

I am old enough to remember getting shots for polio and smallpox and a host of other diseases before I finished the third grade. I remember when I was looking for my first job that for almost anything involving food handling, or being a barber, or a half-dozen other occupations, you had to have a regular TB test — and have the certificate to prove it.

We were the first generation to fully enjoy the benefits of the miracle drugs and advances growing out of the development of sulfa drugs and the discovery of the tetracyline drug family in 1948 by Elion and Hitchings.

By 1974, modern medicine had basically declared most killer diseases either extinct or easily treatable by the administration of antibiotics. Modern medicine declared it had conquered infectious disease.

Most of those extinct diseases actually stayed extinct for awhile, but now they are back with a vengeance, extinct no longer, and many are now immune to most modern antibiotic drugs.

You don’t need a TB certificate to work at McDonald’s anymore, but a new drug-resistant strain of TB has pushed TB back into the top contender for the world’s leading killer.

The 1918 Spanish Flu Epidemic infected one fifth of the world’s population. An estimated 675,000 Americans died during the pandemic. That was ten times as many who died during World War I. Of the U.S. soldiers who died in Europe, half of them fell to the influenza virus and not to the enemy.

The effect of the influenza epidemic was so severe that the average life span in the US was depressed by 10 years. The death rate for 15 to 34-year-olds of influenza and pneumonia were 20 times higher in 1918 than in previous years. People were struck with illness on the street and died rapid deaths.

The name came from the early affliction and large mortalities in Spain where it allegedly killed 8 million in May, 1918. It is believed to have begun with pigs. Most experts believe that flu viruses reside harmlessly in birds, where they are genetically stable.

Occasionally, a virus from birds will infect pigs. The swine immune system attacks the virus, forcing it to change genetically to survive. The result is a new virus.

Two other flu viruses spread all over the world since 1918 – Asian flu in 1957 and the Hong Kong flu in 1968 – and both mutated in pigs.

(It is interesting that 4,000 years ago, God warned the Israelis not to keep pigs or eat pork? The Jews call them ‘unclean’. Science is starting to catch up, although I dearly love bacon)

When asked of the signs of His coming, Jesus spoke of a generation that would;

” hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.” (Matthew 24:6)

That describes the 20th century. Check.

“For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom:”

I don’t think it is inaccurate to say that pretty much covers what little we’ve experienced of the 21st century, do you? Check.

“and there shall be famines,”

Africa is starving, so is India. North Koreans are boiling grass and eating leather. Much of what was the old Soviet Union is living in abject poverty. Food crops last year world wide were far below estimates. Wars raging all across the continent, mostly Muslims against Christians (and everybody else) make the famine situation ever worse.

“and pestilences,” deadly, infectious disease. Check.

“and earthquakes, in divers places.” Check. (But that is for a different Omega Letter.)

While all these have been part of the human condition, in each case, the instances are increasing in both frequency and intensity. In the case of pestilence, thirty years ago we announced we had conquered most infectious disease. Now the instances of infectious disease are both more frequent and certainly more intense.

(A ‘flesh-eating disease’ intense enough for you? Killed Muppeter Jim Henson and ate the leg off a former Quebec premiere. I think its pretty intense).

The 1918 Spanish Flu became a pandemic because thousands of doughboys were either going to Europe or coming home, carrying it both ways. The same applied for other soldiers in the conflict. It was the most rapid mobilization in history.

It marked the beginning of modern trans-oceanic travel. And the first truly world-wide pandemic. But not the last.

Revelation 6 tells of the ride of the four horsemen of the Apocalypse who deliver judgment during the Tribulation Period.

“And I looked, and behold a pale horse: and his name that sat on him was Death, and Hell followed with him. And power was given unto them over the FOURTH PART of the earth, to kill with sword, and with hunger, and with death, and with the beasts of the earth.”

We aren’t there yet. But, as I mentioned yesterday, the writing is indeed on the wall.

UN To Recognize Gay Marriages

UN To Recognize Gay Marriages
Vol: 28 Issue: 30 Friday, January 30, 2004

Secretary General Kofi Annan has ruled that marriages recognized under the law of a U.N. employee’s home country will qualify that employee for all benefits provided to eligible family members. In a bulletin issued Thursday, Annan ordered the new policy effective February 1.

The ruling means that gay UN employees who are recognized as being ‘married’ will be extended the same spousal rights as heterosexual employees. U.N. spokeswoman Marie Okabe says the ruling is consistent with a long-standing U.N. policy of taking into consideration a staff member’s nationality when determining that employee’s family status.

“There’s been a growing trend over the past few years in several member-states toward recognition of same sex marriages or recognition of domestic partnerships that may involve partners of the same or different sex,” she said. “The bulletin acknowledges this trend and simply extends to these new situations the existing practice of accepting as a fact the family status of U.N. staff members as determined by the laws of the country of their nationality.”

Canada, the Netherlands and Belgium permit same sex unions. Most western European countries, along with Australia and New Zealand, also provide some rights to couples, regardless of sexual orientation.

In the US, the laws governing marriages rest with the individual states, despite the federal ‘Defense of Marriage Act’ that defines marriage as a union between a man and a woman. Howard Dean’s Vermont recognizes same-sex civil unions. In theory, then, UN employees from Vermont could also be extended same-sex spousal benefits.

Assessment:

So, what IS the big deal about same-sex marriages? I mean, why should anybody care? It is really annoying (to say the least) to have to put up with the in-your-face attitudes from gay rights advocates — but there is no Constitutional right NOT to be annoyed.

It is even more annoying to be told that I have no right to be annoying back. Homosexuals are free to criticize heterosexuals; that’s free speech. But when heterosexuals criticize homosexuals, the rules change and it becomes ‘hate speech.’

Maybe, if we just dropped our objections to gay marriage, they’ll go away and stop bothering us? What do WE care?

OK. Even if we didn’t care, it makes a difference. The recognition of gay marriage does NOT elevate same-sex unions to the level of traditional marriage. Instead, heterosexual marriage drops to the level of same-sex unions.

That is a critical difference. If they are to be treated the same way, then many of the traditional elements of marriage will have to go by the wayside. There are certain spousal rights that are extended as both a matter of long-standing tradition and as a matter of law that come into question.

If same-sex unions become the same as marriage, it doesn’t automatically mean that same-sex couples will achieve more benefits. It could just as easily mean that certain traditional spousal rights will be withdrawn across-the-board.

How will the courts handle a same-sex divorce? Will things like property division be handled the same way? In many places, common-law marriages are given equal standing under the law with formal marriages.

If a heterosexual couple cohabitate for a certain period of time, present themselves as husband and wife, if the wife takes the husband’s name, etc., then, under common law, they are legally married. Dissolving such a union can be as difficult as a traditional marriage. Remember Lee Marvin’s famous ‘palimony’ trial?

How would a homosexual common-law relationship be determined? How can such a union be equally protected under the law? If it can’t, does it mean there can be a different standard? Not if same-sex unions are equal to heterosexual marriage. It won’t be same-sex unions that will have to be redefined, it will be heterosexual ones.

What about the automatic extension of spousal benefits? One doesn’t need to be a rocket scientist to figure out that extending those benefits to gay couples will be expensive. Employers are not going to just gladly extend them to anybody who demands them. If same-sex unions will require proof, then so will heterosexual unions, to keep them equal.

What about the ‘adopted’ children of same-sex couples? Will it just be assumed that those children are the legal children of such a union? More likely, heterosexual couples will have to prove their children are legitimate. Or, will there be a definition of legitimacy at all?

How can you define an illegitimate child under the law at all? What will that mean for legitimate heirs? Will there be such a thing?

What will constitute a ‘couple’? Will the same rules apply, say, for adultery between two men or two women as it does for heterosexuals? A recent Vermont Supreme Court ruling says no. In that case, a man was suing his wife for divorce on the grounds she had committed adultery with her lesbian lover. Since Vermont has ‘at fault’ divorce laws, the property settlement would be different if one member had committed adultery in the marriage.

The Court ruled that a lesbian relationship does not constitute adultery in a heterosexual marriage. Would the same ‘extra-marital’ (for want of a better word) relationship constitute ‘adultery’ in a gay marriage? If so, then the Vermont guy got the shaft. If not, then the rules for adultery in a heterosexual marriage would have to be changed to accommodate the rules governing same-sex unions. ‘Adultery’ would have to be removed from the books.

It is not just a social affectation or a ‘forward-looking’ liberal social policy we are talking about here. What we are talking about is the death of marriage, not its becoming more inclusive.

Making a same-sex marriage legal is the equivalent to taking traditional marriage out of the existing legal framework and making it no different than gay unions. The rules that apply to gay unions will also apply to traditional unions, not the other way around.

And we haven’t even touched on the moral problems with it. Contrary to popular belief, the Bible does NOT say that being a homosexual is, in and of itself, a sin. It says that being a PRACTICING homosexual is a sin. Look it up.

Every prohibition in Scripture regarding homosexuality infers CONDUCT, not orientation.

“If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination . . .” (Leviticus 20:13) The prohibition is against the act itself.

“And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.” (Romans 1:27)

The Bible also says the same thing of heterosexuals. Heterosexual sex outside of traditional marriage is called ‘adultery’ by Scripture and is a sin. Heterosexual sex within a marriage is not. “Marriage is honourable in all, and the bed undefiled: but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge.” (Hebrews 13:4)

Marriage is the basis upon which God created human beings. It is what separates humans from lower forms of animals. It is the basic model against which all societies are formed. Nationhood itself is based on the concept of family. God uses the model of marriage to explain our relationship to Him. The Church is the Bride of Christ.

“For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.” (Romans 8:15)

We are given the spirit of ‘adoption’ which gives us the right to cry ‘Abba’ (lit. ‘Daddy’).

“To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.” (Galatians 4:5)

“Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will.” (Ephesians 1:5)

It is therefore no real surprise that the United Nations has decided to treat gay marriages as equal to heterosexual marriages. The unstated purpose of the United Nations is the destruction of the nation-state, and bringing all nations under the direct governance of the UN. Since the concept of marriage is the model for the concept of independent nationhood, the destruction of the sanctity of the family unit is part of an ongoing strategy designed to bring about the destruction of the sanctity of the nation-state and its replacement with a global government.

A truly global government was never possible before — not in all recorded history. But the Bible says such a government WILL exist. It will be truly global, and it will be truly evil. Scripture says such a global government will only happen once, and that it will last for only seven years.

“And in the days of THESE KINGS shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom SHALL NOT BE LEFT TO OTHER PEOPLE, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever.” (Daniel 2:44)

The handwriting is on the wall. All anybody needs to do is read it. This IS the generation that will see the rise and fall of the Kingdom that ‘shall not be left to other people’.

“Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass away, till all be fulfilled.” (Luke 21:32)

The Death of Outrage

The Death of Outrage
Vol: 28 Issue: 29 Thursday, January 29, 2004

Israel agreed to a controversial prisoner swap with Hezbollah in which they agreed to release more than 400 prisoners, including a number of them with Israeli blood on their hands, in exchange for two soldiers, and Israeli businessman and the body of another soldier.

Among those freed are failed suicide bombers, spies, terrorists who fired but missed their targets, and those who tossed Molotov cocktails and stones.

Not only Arabs, but two foreigners who planned to carry out suicide attacks on Hezbollah’s behalf are among the 435 prisoners released in the German-mediated deal struck with the Hezbollah in exchange for the return of IDF soldiers St.-Sgts. Benny Avraham, Adi Avitan, and Omar Sawayid, and businessman Elhanan Tannenbaum.

Israel released 460 prisoners, 31 of them from abroad, mostly from Lebanon. These were taken to a holding facility for final checks before deportation. Among them are Lebanese who killed or wounded soldiers in south Lebanon. Of those remaining, 371 are Palestinian security prisoners, to be released Wednesday, and 60 Palestinians held in administrative detention.

Once Israel agreed to the swap, and the prisoners were rounded up, put on buses and headed north, two things happened.

The first was that Israel learned that instead of trading three live Israelis and one dead one, they were trading for three dead Israeli soldiers and one live Israeli businessman.

It seems their Arab captors couldn’t help themselves and just HAD to kill the other two IDF soldiers. But they didn’t mention that little detail to the Israelis until AFTER the prisoner swap was agreed to and the press was notified a deal had been struck.

The terrorists rightly reasoned that, once Israel agreed to the deal, it couldn’t back out, even if the Arabs lied about what they were offering in trade.

The second event occurred even as the busloads of prisoners were headed to the Lebanese border.

A suicide bomber blew up a bus only fifteen yards away the prime minister’s residence. The blast killed at least ten Israelis and wounded at least fifty. As with such catastrophic attacks, the death toll and the number of wounded are expected to rise as the investigation continues.

Responsibility was claimed by the al-Aqsa Martyr’s Brigade, which is the military arm of al Fatah, the party founded and headed by Yasser Arafat.

Despite the fact that Hezbollah lied about the IDF soldiers being alive, and in spite of the suicide attack timed to coincide with the prisoner release, Israel went ahead with the deal, trading 400 prisoners for three corpses and one live Israeli civilian.

Assessment:

Oddly enough, few newspapers reporting the prisoner swap made any mention of either the fact the two soldiers being traded were actually dead, or that the swap took place concurrent to a new suicide attack against Israeli civilians in Jerusalem.

Neither did I find much information about the fact the bomber entered from Bethlehem. Bethlehem is only five miles from Jerusalem, is the only city fully under PA control, or that Israel has not yet extended its security fence to separate Bethlehem and Jerusalem.

Call me a stickler for details, but it would seem to me that all of that information is utterly relevant to the overall story. It seems more than curious that the BBC, for example, noted the bus bombing was a ‘likely retaliation’ for an Israeli operation in Gaza that killed five terrorists.

(Terrorists that the BBC called ‘militants’).

The BBC DID mention that the PA ‘condemned’ the bombing. ‘Condemned’ isn’t a word I would have used to describe the PA’s statement, since it merely noted the Palestinian attack was part of a ‘cycle of violence’ — which is a meaningless phrase, when you think it through.

Israel trades 400 prisoners for three dead guys, and that is a ‘prisoner exchange’. An Israeli military operation kills five terrorists, and the terrorists respond by killing Israeli civilians on a bus, and THAT is a ‘cycle’ of violence?

What would break this alleged ‘cycle’ of violence? Trading 400 prisoners for three dead guys wasn’t enough. And an attack against terrorists is reported as if it were morally equivalent to attacking women and children on a civilian bus.

If I, together with the rest of the world, hadn’t been undergoing a systematic conditioning process designed to redefine my sense of right and wrong, I suppose I would be far more outraged. But I’ve gotten used to it.

In the same way I’ve come to expect truth to be equally elusive when it comes to the Iraq war nonsense.

When Iraq weapons inspector David Kay finally got a chance to straighten out the rampant misquotes in the Washington Post and elsewhere that seemed to suggest he believed the administration lied, the Washington Post didn’t retract their story.

They ran a new story under the headline, “Kay Backs Outside Probe of Iraq Data” suggesting Kay was demanding an investigation of the administration. The Post claimed Kay ‘denunciated’ the ‘intelligence used to justify the war’ saying Kay caught the White House ‘off guard’.

Kay merely said that an investigation would put to rest all the lingering ‘questions’ — most of which came from the likes of Ted Kennedy and Carl Levin, who, unable to get Kay to say what they wanted, ignored his answers and instead made speeches including the answers Kay denied were true.

The Post now suggests the White House is lying still, saying that “even hawks who had backed the administration on Iraq said it is not credible for the administration to ‘deny’ that there was an intelligence failure.”

Once again, if I hadn’t been conditioned to expect to be lied to, I would be outraged. But I am not. Merely kerfluffled at how skilled the propagandists are, and how willing the masses out there are to be propagandized.

Think about it for a minute. The response to a one-sided prisoner swap by the Israelis is an unprovoked attack on Israeli civilians, and it is a ‘cycle of violence’. (I need a new dictionary. This old one is broken)

After months of blaming the administration for lying about the reasons for war with Iraq, when confronted with faulty intelligence, now the administration is ‘covering up’ by ‘denying’ there were any intelligence failures.

(Why would they deny what they’ve been saying all along? Which is that they relied on intelligence reports to make their assessments for war?)

Does anybody remember that the ‘intelligence failures’ convinced the entire Clinton administration of the same things the Bush administration claimed as its reasons for war? Or that the Clinton administration spent eight years gathering it before turning it over to Bush? Or that 9/11 sorta added to the sense of urgency?

While the other major players in Bible prophecy for the last days, like Europe, Russia, China and Africa continue to advance along the blueprint outlined by Scripture, the other major player, Israel, continues to be the butt of global condemnation, no matter how egregious the provocations are.

The United States, which is strangely absent from Bible prophecy, continues to destroy its own global credibility by agonizing over whether or not it was right to remove the most brutal dictator the world has seen since Hitler or Stalin?

At the outset of the first Gulf War, Europe was just beginning its efforts at unifying the old Roman Empire into a new and improved democratic version. The Soviet Union and the United States were still global superpowers.

When America won the Cold War, everybody liked us.

Ten years later, Europe is rapidly becoming our enemy, Russia is operating as an out-of-control criminal enterprise, and America is the most hated nation on the planet. The Arabs can do no wrong; Israel can do no right.

America’s most vocal critics are its own politicians. During the height of the Clinton scandals, Bill Clinton angrily remarked, “You can’t say you love your country but you hate your government.”

Ask any Democrat if they ‘hate’ the Bush administration. Log on to the Democrat-supported moveon.org website. Or, read some of the post Election-2000 Clinton/Gore quotes.

Clinton has since changed his mind. “Sure, you can love your country and hate your government” — [as long as your government isn’t me.] Just like you can claim to ‘support the troops’ — but condemn the war they are fighting and openly despise the government who sent them there.

“And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be REVEALED IN HIS TIME. For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way. And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming: Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:” (2nd Thessalonians 2:6-11)

“That he might be revealed in his time . . .”

‘Judeophobia’

‘Judeophobia’
Vol: 28 Issue: 28 Wednesday, January 28, 2004

A report in today’s Jerusalem Post reveals that every third European in a recent poll believes that Jews should stop playing what they term “Holocaust victim” games.

The poll was conducted as Europe prepared to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz by the Italian newspaper, Corriere della Sera and covered nine European countries.

According to the poll, 46 percent of those interviewed feel Jews are “different,” and 71% of them urged Israel to withdraw from the territories. Nine percent of respondents do not “like or trust Jews,” and 15% would prefer that Israel not exist.

Just over 68% said they believed Israel has a right to exist but that the government of Prime Minister Ariel Sharon is “making the wrong choices.”

Forty-eight percent of Europeans polled in Italy, France, Belgium, Austria, Spain, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Germany, and Britain said that Jews have “a particular relationship with money.”

In all the countries, anti-Semitic sentiment was positively correlated with anti-Israel sentiment. Among all the Europeans, it appears the most anti-Semitic nation is France.

According to a report in the French paper ‘Le Monde’ (‘This Day’), 47 percent of anti-Semitic incidents in Western Europe take place in France. The paper also reported that while global incidents in general have almost halved, they have almost doubled in France in the past year.

There were 983 incidents of anti-Semitism in 2003 – a sharp decline from 1,979 in 2002. The downward trend is reflected in the UK (107 incidents compared to 114) and the US (40 incidents, down from 45 last year).

However, in France, the figure has almost doubled from 77 to 141. The situation in France is so bad that France’s chief rabbi warned Jewish men to wear baseball caps, rather than yarmulkes, as a protective measure.

American Jews attending a 2001 World Conference Against Racism sponsored by the United Nations in Durban, found themselves confronted by a sophisticated anti-Jewish campaign initiated by NGO activists from Arab countries.

In the months following the Durban meet, Jewish students and professors in the US witnessed a proliferation of activism directed against Israel. In some instances, the target was clearly Israel’s policies towards Palestinians. At other times, Zionism per se and the Jewish state itself came under attack.

Events since Durban revealed a new twist to an old conspiracy theory. Traditional European anti-Semitic standards, such as the 100-year old Czarist forgery known as the “Protocols of the Elders of Zion,” are being resurrected in Muslim countries as a way of explaining contemporary world events.

And in the latest turn, Israel itself was increasingly being considered a racist state comparable to Nazi Germany – with Jews worldwide being considered complicit supporters of genocide.

Abraham Foxman, a Holocaust survivor and director of the Anti-Defamation League published a recent book subtitled, “The Threat of the New Anti-Semitism.” In it, he argues that anti-Semitism has found new friends on the political left – including college students sympathetic to anti-Israel politics and anti-globalism activists who imbibe anti-Semitism and anti-imperialism in one undifferentiated brew.

In short, anti-Zionism is a contemporary cover for antipathy towards Jews. And its main practitioners are, by this account, the political left and various Islamic strains.

The “new” anti-Semitism is considered to be so qualitatively different than the old that it needs a new name: Judeophobia. So argue two British editors in a recent collection entitled: “A New Anti-Semitism? Debating Judeophobia in 21st Century Britain.”

By this account, “Judeophobia might be regarded as referring to both the fear and dislike of Jews: just as xenophobia is used to refer to the fear and dislike of foreigners.”

Assessment:

In the cultured and sophisticated West, particularly Canada and Western Europe, being ‘homophobic’ is an epithet and a synonym for backward, redneck racist thinking. In some countries, like Canada, it is a criminal offense for which there are prescribed penalties, including jail.

‘Phobia’ means ‘fear’ so, be definition, a ‘homophobic’ would be one who ‘fears’ homosexuals, but it is interpreted to mean anyone who has a difference of opinion as to whether or not homosexuality is a lifestyle choice or a genetic predisposition.

One who believes it is a lifestyle choice that doesn’t rise to the level of a protected minority falls into the category of a ‘homophobe’.

‘Xenophobia’ means a fear of foreigners. To the Europeans or multicultural Canada, to be a xenophobic is almost as bad.

In the United States, partisans from both the Left and Right dismiss folks like Pat Buchanan and Representative Ron Paul as ‘xenophobes’ whose views are of interest only to the extreme ‘right wing’ (anybody who is a political Constitutionalist falls into that category).

But the new anti-Semitism is worthy of ‘study’ rather than condemnation, and a new definition, that of ‘Judeophobia’ and is considered more an illness than a social character defect.

I find this fascinating, because, unlike ‘homophobia’ or ‘xenophobia’ — both of which, it can be argued, threaten some facet of Western society, Judeophobia is an irrational, almost genetically inspired, hatred of Jews.

History demonstrates no threat to any society presented by the existence of Judaism or Israel. Israel is the only modern Western-style democracy in the Middle East.

It is the only country in the Middle East to offer such basic guarantees to its citizens as freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, freedom of dissent, and the right to freedom of religion — at least, as extended to Muslims.

Israeli-Arab citizens are not required to convert to Judaism. In most Muslim countries, Jews are not afforded any of these rights, and in some, like Saudi Arabia, they are not even allowed to exist.

But most of the world views Israel as the single greatest threat to world peace on the planet — in Europe, 8 out of 10 Europeans named Israel the top contender for that title.

It is really difficult to figure out why, in the natural. There is no recorded incident of Israeli aggression against another country, apart from in clear instances of self-defense.

The wars of 1948, 1956, 1967 and 1973 were all defensive wars against combined Arab armies openly threatening Israel’s annihilation. What wins Israel the category of most dangerous nation isn’t its aggressive nature. Israel wins the top prize for wanting to maintain its continued existence.

To ‘Judeophobes’ that is enough justification all by itself — and ‘Judeophobia’ is, in and of itself, inexplicable by any natural understanding of geopolitics.

This is where it gets fascinating. ‘Judeophobia’ is the most prevalent in places where the Bible is the least respected as the unchangeable Word of God. The godless UN is a prime example.

While they deny the existence of God as revealed in the pages of Scripture, they are among those who most hate the existence of Israel.

After all, if God doesn’t exist, or, at least, if the God of the Bible is a myth, then what is the problem with Israel claiming to be God’s Chosen People? Since they don’t believe in God, what do they care what a ‘myth’ thinks of a particular country?

But they do. It is a curious dichotomy. For most, the justification for hating Jews is either their ‘arrogant claim’ of special status before a ‘mythical’ God, or it is their assumption of responsibility for the Crucifixion of a ‘mythical’ Savior.

There are no valid political arguments. Jews have been the recipients of more Nobel Prizes for medicine, literature, arts and sciences than any other identifiable ethnic group. In short, they have been a blessing to every nation in which they have been scattered for the last two thousand years.

That is a fulfillment of the promise God made to Abraham and his descendents. “And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.” (Genesis 12:3)

One couldn’t make that same argument for Abraham’s other descendents, those who proceeded from Ishmael, through whom Islam claims its spiritual inheritance.

But Islam also fulfills God’s prediction for Ishmael; “And he will be a wild man; his hand will be against every man, and every man’s hand against him; and he shall dwell in the presence of all his brethren.” (Genesis 16:12)

In spite of the accurate fulfillment of both these prophecies, the world prefers to love and support Islam over Judaism.

Even the 9/11 attacks have failed to do much to dampen that love. The UN continues to side against the Israelis. At the height of the war against terror, the United States favors the establishment of an openly terrorist state called Palestine.

The General Assembly has passed more resolutions in the last sixty years condemning Israel than it has against all fifty-five Islamic states combined.

Israel’s existence, especially in the current geopolitical climate, is absolute proof of the existence of the God of the Bible. That’s why the world hates it to the exclusion of all other nations.

For centuries, the term ‘wandering Jew’ has been used to describe a shiftless character with no roots. People looking for a better price are described as ‘Jews’ or people trying to ‘Jew down’ a price. In short, being a Jew is, in itself, a byword, that is to say, a word with many meanings.

“And thou shalt become an astonishment, a proverb, and a byword, among all nations whither the LORD shall lead thee.” (Deuteronomy 28:37)

“Then will I cut off Israel out of the land which I have given them; and this house, which I have hallowed for my name, will I cast out of my sight; and Israel shall be a proverb and a byword among all people:” (1 Kings 9:7)

“Then will I pluck them up by the roots out of my land which I have given them; and this house, which I have sanctified for my name, will I cast out of my sight, and will make it to be a proverb and a byword among all nations.” (2 Chronicles 7:20)

“Thou makest us a byword among the heathen, a shaking of the head among the people.” (Psalms 44:14)

In the last days, God promised He would restore Israel to her own place, on the exact same land from which she was uprooted two thousand years ago.

“For I will restore health unto thee, and I will heal thee of thy wounds, saith the LORD; because they called thee an Outcast, saying, This is Zion, whom no man seeketh after.” (Jeremiah 30:17)

“And I will bring them out from the people, and gather them from the countries, and will bring them to their own land, and feed them upon the mountains of Israel by the rivers, and in all the inhabited places of the country.” (Ezekiel 34:13)

“After many days thou shalt be visited: in the latter years thou shalt come into the land that is brought back from the sword, and is gathered out of many people, against the mountains of Israel, which have been always waste: but it is brought forth out of the nations, and they shall dwell safely all of them.” (Ezekiel 38:8)

The Enemy hates Israel, because Israel’s existence means his time runs short.

“Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:” (1 Peter 5:8)

Because the enemy hates Israel, the world hates Israel. Israel is God’s stopwatch, counting down the days to the return of Christ — an event no UN diplomat or God-hating nation wants to contemplate.

“But ye, O mountains of Israel, ye shall shoot forth your branches, and yield your fruit to my people of Israel; for they are at hand to come.” (Ezekiel 36:8)

“Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When her branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is near: So ye in like manner, when ye shall see these things come to pass, know that it is nigh, even at the doors. Verily I say unto you, that this generation shall NOT pass, till all these things be done.” (Mark 13:28-30)

Toward a ‘Multipolar World Order’

Toward a ‘Multipolar World Order’
Vol: 28 Issue: 27 Tuesday, January 27, 2004

Jacques Chirac has a new best friend. Chinese president Hu Jintao arrived in France on January 27 for an ambitious official 4-day visit. Hu is to meet with Chirac to sign a new bilateral agreement, before visiting the Eiffel Tower and the Toulouse Airbus factories.

Also on the agenda is his planned address to the National Assembly of the French Parliament and meetings with French businessmen interested in investing in China.

Hu’s visit was timed to coincide with the anniversary of French recognition of Mao Tse Tung’s People’s Republic of China. Until the French broke the ice, Mao’s government was internationally isolated, and Chiang Kai Shek’s government-in-exile on the island of Tawian was internationally recognized as the only legal representative of the Chinese people.

The visit is another in a series of efforts by Chirac to develop a grouping of powerful nations that will counter-balance what Chirac views as the threat posed by US global supremacy.

Chirac has a pet name for the status quo. Chirac has been the chief critic of what he calls the ‘unipolar’ world since the collapse of the Soviet Union and the emergence of the United States as the only global super-power. Chirac envisions a multinational superpower, led by France, to restore ‘balance’ through his ‘multipolar’ global vision.

French Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman, Herv Ladsous, said that such a convergence of visions for a multipolar world is even stronger after the war in Iraq. France aims at strengthening its own economic investments in China, including investments in the television and DVD industries and nuclear plants.

On the other hand China is looking for support for its new investments, new technology, environmental protection, cooperation in defeating Sars, the fight against crime and illegal immigration. France is an important intermediary for China s relations with the European Union.

French foreign minister, Dominique de Villepin, met with other EU ministers to lift the arms embargo imposed on China as soon as possible. The embargo was set after the events of Tiananmen Square in 1989.

Last December, the European Parliament voted down Beijing s request by passing a resolution on the issue. In it the European Parliament decided to keep the embargo, due to insufficient guarantees in terms of China s human rights violations and threats made against Taiwan.

Germany also agreed with France to lift the embargo.

French authorities gave Hu Jintao a royal welcome , decorating the Eiffel Tower in red, criticizing Taiwan and keeping the special guest away from embarrassing situations concerning human rights issues. Figures considered unwelcome in Beijing were not present at the Year of China in France cultural event.

Figures like Francis Perrin, president of Amnesty International-France. He ’embarrassed’ China by criticizing China’s total disregard for human rights. He called for “consistency. . . between words and actions. French politicians often remind us that France is the home of human rights. The least they can do is face the issue of human rights of China.

That made Perrin an embarrassment to both the visiting Chinese premiere, and to Jacques Chirac, who prefers to revise his history on the fly.

Beijing routinely blocks web sights, employs capital punishment for political crimes, as well as other human rights violations, like the oppression of minorities, the country’s arrest and imprisonment of dissidents, and forced abortions and sterilizations as part of China’s ‘one child’ policy.

Assessment:

France’s dream of a French-led multi-polar world isn’t just a Gaullist pipe-dream. In an Aug. 25 speech, French Foreign Minister Dominique de Villepin called for a “new world organization” to replace the United Nations as it is currently structured.

At an annual conference in Paris bringing together 200 top French diplomats and Foreign Ministry officials, de Villepin reiterated his view that the United States must cede power to a new “collective-security” organization.

“[B]uilding a new world, founding a new order” was “urgent,” he insisted, “an immense task that is incumbent upon us.” It was France’s role to lead Europe to become “one of the founding pillars” of the new system, he said.

The new collective-security system should be “founded on collective responsibility and world democracy,” de Villepin said. In particular, he said that France was now looking favorably to the idea of enlarging membership of the U.N. Security Council and vesting it with expanded powers.

While he provided no specifics in his speech, aides later said that he believed Germany, Japan, India, Brazil and a major African power such as Nigeria all should be given permanent seats on the council, along with veto power over all Security Council resolutions, including those authorizing the use of force.

In a direct dig at the Bush administration, de Villepin insisted that no nation should be allowed to use force, even in the defense of its own interests, without specific approval from the Security Council.

“Using force is often tempting,” he said, but “can only be justified if collective security or urgent humanitarian needs require it.” Force must be “a last resort,” and “only when the international community, through the Security Council, decides.”

The French seldom ask for Security Council approval when it intervenes militarily in Africa, and in 1999 had no problem in joining a NATO coalition that bypassed the United Nations.

But when the United States assembled a “coalition of the willing” to oust Saddam Hussein, after France blocked U.S. efforts to win U.N. support that was “unacceptable.” That’s the French view of ‘multipolar’ — do as I say, not as I do.

It isn’t much different, really, than the US in this regard; with the exception that the French don’t have the military might to back it up. Hence the drive to create a little global ‘kingdom’ led by King Jacques the first, who can mobilize his ‘partners’ who now include the EU, the Russians and the Chinese.

Dominique de Villepin said that no country should take umbrage at the French insistence on a new “multipolar” world order.

Sweeping aside the record of his own diplomacy, de Villepin said, “[T]he French vision of multipolarity does not aim at organizing rivalry or competition, but responsibility, stability and initiative.” (Baloney, but it sounds good when he says it in French).

De Villepin hinted in recent speeches that France is gearing up for a new showdown with the United States and Britain over Iraq, this time disguised as an effort to transfer authority for the post-war military occupation from the United States to the United Nations.

“The new structures that eventually will be put in place cannot be simply an enlargement or adjustment of the current occupation forces. Instead, we must put in place a veritable international force under a U.N. Security Council mandate,” he said.

Last June, US National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice dismissed Chirac’s vision of ‘multipolarity’ saying, “Multipolarity was never a unifying idea or vision… it was a necessary evil that sustained the essence of war but did not promote peace. Multipolarity is a theory of rivalry, of competing interests and, at its very worst, of competing values. We tried it before… it led to the Great War, to the Second World War and to the Cold War. Why should we try to divide ourselves?” Rice asked. “Only the enemies of freedom would cheer these divisions.”

Why, indeed? For students of Bible prophecy, the answer is simple. Because that is the way God said things would develop as we get closer to the End of Days. The Russian newspaper, Pravda, dubbed the French vision a ‘Multipolar World Order’ — evidently since the ‘New World Order’ thing never fully panned out.

The partners enlisted by France to create this ‘Multipolar World Order’ are interesting, to say the least. Let’s look at an overview of the situation.

The French have pretty much taken over the core of the European superstate, exerting supremacy through the 10-nation Western European Alliance.

“In November 1988, a Protocol of Accession was signed by the WEU Member States with Portugal and Spain. The ratification process was completed in March 1990. Greece followed a similar process in 1992 and 1995 thus bringing the total WEU membership to 10. The transfer of the crisis management functions to the European Union has had no impact on WEU membership.” – from the WEU website, http://www.weu.int/WEU_today.htm

The prophet Daniel predicted in the last days that a revived form of the old Roman Empire would be restored. (Daniel 9:26) Daniel characterized it as ‘partly strong and partly week, like iron mixed with miry clay’. (Daniel 2:42-43).

The prophet Ezekiel predicted the rise of Gog and Magog (modern Russia) and says that, at some point during the ‘latter times’ it would ally itself with the Islamic nations of Persia (Iran) Libya, the North African Muslim states and Eastern Europe.

(“Gomer, and all his bands; the house of Togarmah of the north quarters, and all his bands: and many people with thee.” – Ezekiel 38:6)

Currently, Israel is embroiled in a legal battle with the European-led World Court at The Hague, as well as with the United Nations, Russia and the Muslim world over the construction of what they call “Israel’s apartheid wall.”

Ezekiel foretold a time when the Gog Magog alliance will think ‘an evil thought’ “And thou shalt say, I will go up to the land of unwalled villages; I will go to them that are at rest, that dwell safely, all of them dwelling without walls, and having neither bars nor gates.” (Ezekiel 38:10b, 11)

The target will be Israel. “And thou shalt come up against my people of Israel. . .” (Ezekiel 38:16) Israel is also embroiled in a war of words with the United Nations, the Muslim world, the WEU and Russia over an ever-increasing level of anti-Semitism.

The Apostle John recorded in the Book of the Revelation that, out of this grand alliance will rise a leader, “having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy.”

(Although now unoffically dubbed the ‘Group of Eight’ the G-7 only invited Russia as an ‘observer only’ to give Russian pride a boost following the USSR’s ignominious collapse. Russia’s economy is in shambles and it is the Group of Seven (plus one) that sets the global economic agenda — so both the ‘ten crowns’ and ‘seven heads’ are ALREADY in existence). (ref: http://www.factmonster.com/ce6/history/A0821954.html)

“And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads: And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. (Revelation 13:16-17)

The Apostle John also references a powerful army of two hundred million men (approximately the population of the known world in his time) that will march westward under the banner of the ‘Kings of the East.’ (Revelation 9:16, 16:12)

Chirac’s vision of a ‘multipolar world’ mirrors the Bible’s overview of the last days. Indeed, the only obstacle in his path is the United States of America — the currently global superpower, but curiously, the only player in the current global drama not specifically mentioned in Bible prophecy.

It all began with the restoration of Israel (the ‘fig tree’) in 1948. 1948 was the year the Cold War officially began with Moscow’s Berlin Blockade that first pitted the US against the USSR in a forty-year conflict of competing ideologies. The embryonic Western European Alliance was born out of the 1948 Benelux Treaty.

China’s division into mainline China and the People’s Republic of Taiwan occurred after Communist control of Manchuria was realized with the capture of Shenyang (Mukden) in Nov. 1948. The division of the Koreas and the birth of the North Korean Stalinist state took place in 1948.

So too, did the majority of the documents that set the stage for the efforts to build a global government, including the UN Declaration of Human Rights (1948), the Venice Genocide Treaty (1948), the World Council of Churches (1948), the Venice Agreement on Treaties (1948) and the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (1948), which has since grown into the World Trade Organization.

The players are all now on stage, awaiting their cues.

Jesus said, “Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When her branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is near: So ye in like manner, when ye shall see these things come to pass, know that it is nigh, even at the doors. Verily I say unto you, that this generation shall NOT pass, till ALL these things be done.” (Mark 13:28-30)

Special Report: Things That are Different Are STILL Not the Same

Special Report: Things That are Different Are STILL Not the Same
Vol: 28 Issue: 26 Monday, January 26, 2004

According to most newspaper headlines today, not to mention the lead-in to most news broadcasts, US weapons inspector David Kay says his conclusion was that there never were weapons of mass destruction in Saddam’s Iraq.

Canada’s National Post led with the headline, “Why Could We All Be so Wrong?” before explaining further in the body of the story that what Kay REALLY said was that Saddam HAD “a large number of WMD program-related activities,” but that he can’t find them now.

The new Democratic front-runner, John Kerry, leapt immediately on the bandwagon, taking what Kay almost said and adding his own twist.

“It confirms what I have said for a long period of time, that we were misled — misled not only in the intelligence, but misled in the way that the president took us to war,” Kerry said on Fox News Sunday. “I think there’s been an enormous amount of exaggeration, stretching, deception.”

That sound ANYTHING like what you are hearing on the news? Of course not. Kerry is lying. He condemns himself as a liar with his own words, either then — or now.

“I will be voting to give the President of the United States the authority to use force-if necessary-to disarm Saddam Hussein because I believe that a deadly arsenal of weapons of mass destruction in his hands is a real and grave threat to our security.” Sen. John F. Kerry, Oct. 9, 2002

“Without question, we need to disarm Saddam Hussein. He is a brutal, murderous dictator; leading an oppressive regime … He presents a particularly grievous threat because he is so consistently prone to miscalculation . . . . And, now, he is miscalculating America’s response to his continued deceit and his consistent grasp for weapons of mass destruction . . . . So the threat of Saddam Hussein with weapons of mass destruction is real . . . .” Sen. John F. Kerry, Jan. 23. 2003

The San Jose Mercury news headline this morning screamed, “Inspector Says Iraq Weapons Risk was Exaggerated”, in keeping with the popular misconception that the administration deliberately exaggerated the risk.

What Kay ACTUALLY said, when asked whether President Bush owed the country an explanation for the gap between his warnings and Kay’s findings; “I actually think the intelligence community owes the president, rather than the president owing the American people.”

In point of fact, reading the copy, one finds that Kay reported, Iraq attempted to revive its efforts to develop nuclear weapons in 2000 and 2001, but never got as far toward making a bomb as Iran and Libya’. Reading further, one finds that Kay’s contention was that it was the IRAQIS who exaggerated the risk, not the administration.

“The whole thing shifted from directed programs to a corrupted process,” Kay said. “The regime was no longer in control; it was like a death spiral,” he said. Saddam was self-directing projects that were not vetted by anyone else. The scientists were able to fake programs.”

The Mercury News paraphrased Kay to make it sound like he blamed the United States. “Based on his team’s interviews with Iraqi scientists, reviews of Iraqi documents and examinations of facilities and other materials, Kay said the United States was also almost certainly wrong in its prewar belief that Iraq had any significant stockpiles of previously produced weapons of mass destruction.”

To begin with, that isn’t what Kay said. Secondly, if the UNITED STATES was wrong, it wasn’t alone.

“What is at stake is how to answer the potential threat Iraq represents with the risk of proliferation of WMD. Baghdad’s regime did use such weapons in the past. Today, a number of evidences may lead to think that, over the past four years, in the absence of international inspectors, this country has continued armament programs.” – Jacques Chirac, October 16, 2002

“I stand absolutely, 100 percent behind the evidence, based on intelligence, that we presented people,” — Tony Blair, June 2, 2003

“The discovery of chemical warheads prohibited under previous resolutions did not mean Iraq didn’t have more. [T]hose discoveries were actually the tip of the iceberg. – Hans Blix to the UN, January 27, 2003

Germany, one of the most vocal critics of the war, was, together with France and Russia, among the nations most convinced that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction, although they began denying it as soon as it became apparent the US was really going to invade Iraq.

“If we trust our [intelligence] services, and I do, then we know that there exist weapons of mass destruction in Iraq,” – Friedbert Pflueger, Foreign Policy spokesman, German Christian Democratic Party, 2002

One of the reasons the Germans were so convinced was that, of 62 companies listed by Iraq in 1998 as supplying them with dual-use technology, 33 of them were German. The majority of the rest were French and Russian.

Assessment:

The list of liberal newspapers selectively quoting or misquoting Kay’s report is too long to go through, one by one. It would take all day just to read them all.

The comments from the presidential wannabes are somewhat more manageable, but they display the same total disregard for the truth. Howard Dean said yesterday that Iraq was ‘better off’ while Saddam was in power than they are today.

Appearing on “Face the Nation” in September 2002, the same Howard Dean said, “There’s no question that Saddam Hussein is a threat to the United States and to our allies.”

Dean also said in 2003, during an address to Drake University; “And he has tried to build a nuclear bomb. Anyone who believes in the importance of limiting the spread of weapons of mass killing, the value of democracy, and the centrality of human rights must agree that Saddam Hussein is a menace. The world would be a better place if he were in a different place other than the seat of power in Baghdad or any other country. So I want to be clear. Saddam Hussein must disarm. This is not a debate; it is a given.”

Not to be out-done in his criticism of America, General Wesley Clark charged; “What this administration has done is play politics with intelligence and really lean on the intelligence community to come up with the answers they’ve sought,” on NBC’s “Meet the Press yesterday. This administration has hyped the intelligence to get us into Iraq.”

A year and a half ago, Clark testified the exact opposite to Congress, urging Congress to remove Saddam and the threat he posed to America — unilaterally, if necessary.

“When we took action in Kosovo, we did not have United Nations approval. . . . There’s no question that Saddam Hussein is a threat. . . . Yes, he has chemical and biological weapons. . . . He is, as far as we know, actively pursuing nuclear capabilities, though he doesn’t have nuclear warheads yet. If he were to acquire nuclear weapons, I think our friends in the region would face greatly increased risks as would we.” – General Wesley Clark, September 26, 2002

To listen to the media, the Democrats and the global press (especially in Europe and the Middle East) America LIED about the existence of weapons of mass destruction, defying all the evidence to the contrary. Keep that in mind. Few of America’s enemies make any distinction between US political parties.

When the Democrats say Bush lied, to the rest of the world, it means AMERICA lied. Unless there are two Americas, as the Democrats seemed determined to prove.

One is the evil, dishonest and criminal America, headed by the Republicans and the other is a kinder, gentler, honest America, headed by the Democrats. That might play well domestically to the partisans, but to the rest of the world, there is only ONE America. Guess which one?

The global media uses the statements of our government (which includes Democrats) to prove to their own constituents that America is loose cannon on the global stage and a nation worthy of global hatred and mistrust. Already, a number of Arab publications are quoting the Democratic presidential hopefuls as ‘evidence’ of American perfidy.

To listen to the Democrats today, the whole Iraq war, and the reasons for it, were ‘invented’ by the Bush administration as an excuse to grab Iraqi oil, feeding the world-wide anti-American machine that makes America the number one target of choice for terrorists around the globe.

With the exception of Joe Liebermann, every single candidate for the Democratic nomination was against what they are calling ‘Bush’s war.’

The battle cry, which basically says America is a criminal enterprise, rings out, not just from the candidates, but from the Democratic side of both Houses of Congress and pretty much every former official of the previous Democratic administration.

Either the Democrats are lying now, or they were lying before.

“Saddam’s goal … is to achieve the lifting of U.N. sanctions while retaining and enhancing Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction programs. We cannot, we must not and we will not let him succeed. – Madeline Albright, 1998

“Iraq made commitments after the Gulf War to completely dismantle all weapons of mass destruction, and unfortunately, Iraq has not lived up to its agreement.” – Barbara Boxer, November 8, 2002

“The community of nations may see more and more of the very kind of threat Iraq poses now: a rogue state with weapons of mass destruction, ready to use them or provide them to terrorists. If we fail to respond today, Saddam and all those who would follow in his footsteps will be emboldened tomorrow.” – Bill Clinton, 1998

“As a member of the House Intelligence Committee, I am keenly aware that the proliferation of chemical and biological weapons is an issue of grave importance to all nations. Saddam Hussein has been engaged in the development of weapons of mass destruction technology which is a threat to countries in the region and he has made a mockery of the weapons inspection process.” – Nancy Pelosi, December 16, 1998

“We know that he has stored secret supplies of biological and chemical weapons throughout his country.” — Al Gore, Sept. 23, 2002

“We have known for many years that Saddam Hussein is seeking and developing weapons of mass destruction.” — Sen. Ted Kennedy, Sept. 27, 2002

“In the four years since the inspectors left, intelligence reports show that Saddam Hussein has worked to rebuild his chemical and biological weapons stock, his missile delivery capability, and his nuclear program. He has also given aid, comfort, and sanctuary to terrorists, including al Qaeda members . . . . It is clear, however, that if left unchecked, Saddam Hussein will continue to increase his capacity to wage biological and chemical warfare, and will keep trying to develop nuclear weapons.” Sen. Hillary Clinton, Oct 10, 2002

There can be only one version of the truth. That is the version that is true. The revised versions now being advanced by the liberal left bear no resemblance to what they said was true when it suited their political ambitions at the time. Things that are different are NOT the same, no matter how many times they are repeated.

The evidence says that the current crop of presidential hopefuls will say or do anything to seize power, even if it hurts the country they claim to serve. When they made the statements listed above, they were looking at the SAME intelligence that President Bush was looking at when he made the decision to go to war.

Did something change between 2002, when Hillary Clinton, Barbara Boxer, Ted Kennedy, Wesley Clark and John Kerry all warned of Saddam’s arsenal of weapons of mass destruction, and when America went to war with Iraq?

Did they obtain and withhold new intelligence information that was not available to the White House? Or is this cynical political opportunism designed to seize back power, no matter how much damage it does to America’s credibility abroad? What does the evidence say to you?

Today, they are accusing the President of deliberately lying to the American public, suggesting Bush KNEW the intelligence (that they also relied on when making their previous public pronouncements) was flawed.

And that Bush KNEW information that the intelligence services of the United States, Britain, France, Australia, the United Nations own reports from Hans Blix did not.

And that, knowing more than all of them combined, Bush pressed forward with regime change. Worse, they are finding an audience that is buying it.

The repeated claim is that ‘regime change’ was a policy invented by George Bush. (The policy of ‘regime change’ came to being by an Act of Congress in 1998 and was signed into law by President Clinton in December of that year).

There are NOT two Americas. In the eyes of the world, there is only one. Currently, America has tens of thousands of troops in various places around the planet, putting their lives at risk so that Americans of all political persuasions can sleep safely in their beds at night.

Those troops are acutely aware of the risks they face, and they are equally aware that they don’t have the full support of either the American people or of all America’s leadership.

The politicians can SAY they support the troops. But you can’t support the troops and simultaneously claim those troops are being duped by the Commander in Chief into dying for nothing.

American soldiers aren’t blind or stupid. They are flesh-and-blood Americans who believe they are risking it all for a higher purpose than a sub-standard pay check.

That is why they are willing to face the risk. And their reason for making the ultimate sacrifice is being questioned by the same folks they went into battle to defend.

One cannot ‘support’ the troops while condemning their reason for being there in the first place as being based on ‘a lie.’ Who wants to fight, kill, or perhaps be killed, just to protect a lie?

Did we learn NOTHING from the Vietnam nightmare?

The rest of the world continues to look for reasons to hate America. The most effective spokesmen for the ‘America is the root of all evil’ chorus at the UN and Europe are the same folks who want America to trust them with their safety and security.

That being said, read with new eyes the description given by the Apostle Paul of the world in the last days, and apply his description to today’s headlines.

“This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, BOASTERS, proud, BLASPHEMERS, disobedient to parents, UNTHANKFUL, UNHOLY, Without natural affection, TRUCEBREAKERS, FALSE ACCUSERS, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, TRAITORS, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof. . .” (2nd Timothy 3:1-5)

One can almost imagine Paul was given a vision of Campaign 2004 when he concludes, “. . . From such turn away.”

What ABOUT Alcohol?

What ABOUT Alcohol?
Vol: 28 Issue: 25 Sunday, January 25, 2004

It has been accurately observed that ‘fools rush in where angels fear to tread’ — a saying that has been reverberating in my mind since I decided to take on a question first raised in our members-only forum. The question was, basically, “Is it a sin to have a drink with dinner?” But that is a question that begs a host of other questions be dealt with first.

Ask four Christians this question and you can expect four different answers, each with appropriate proof texts to support them. Hence the ‘fools rush in’ saying — there is no way I can approach this without jarring the preserves of at least three quarters of you and guaranteeing some spirited comments in response.

Paul writes to Timothy; “Drink no longer water, but use a little wine for thy stomach’s sake and thine often infirmities.” (1st Timothy 5:23) But Paul’s admonition, taken in context, comes directly after a verse in which Paul tells Timothy, “Lay hands suddenly on no man, neither be partaker of other men’s sins: keep thyself pure.” (5:22)

Does the act of drinking a glass of wine make one impure? Matthew records Jesus’ teaching on this subject, saying, “And He called the multitude, and said unto them, Hear, and understand: Not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man; but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man. (Matthew: 15:10,11)

If that sounds unclear to you, it did to Peter, also. “Then answered Peter and said unto him, Declare unto us this parable. And Jesus said, Are ye also yet without understanding? Do not ye yet understand, that whatsoever entereth in at the mouth goeth into the belly, and is cast out into the draught? But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man.” (Matthew 15:15-18)

Jesus is specifically addressing eating without the ritual handwashing first — but that is an interpretation that, taken in its narrowest sense, seems a bit unsatisfactory.

In fact, interpreting Jesus’ comments ONLY in the context of eating with unwashed hands, it is medically incorrect. Jesus was talking about being SPIRITUALLY defiled when He said, “whatsoever entereth in at the mouth goeth into the belly, and is cast out into the draught . . .” since medically, eating with unwashed hands can cause all kinds of medical problems. And Jesus IS the Great Physician — He knows that.

That’s why He said, “to eat with unwashen hands defileth not a man. . .” (Matthew 15:20) He is speaking of ritual defilement.

Paul writes to the Corinthians, “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.” (1 Corinthians 3:16-17)

Proverbs 20:1 says, “Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise.” Proverbs 31:4-7 says, “It is not for kings, O Lemuel, it is not for kings to drink wine; nor for princes strong drink: Lest they drink, and forget the law, and pervert the judgment of any of the afflicted.”

While Christians are ‘kings and princes’ in the spiritual sense, Proverbs 31 refers to a king in the sense of political leadership. Those who are in a position to make judgments under the law.

Lemuel goes on, saying, “Give strong drink unto him that is ready to perish, and wine unto those that be of heavy hearts. Let him drink, and forget his poverty, and remember his misery no more.” (Proverbs 31:7)

Do Christians have terminal illnesses? Do Christians sometimes have heavy hearts? Do Christians sometimes get fed up with the misery of this life? Gets as clear as mud, doesn’t it?

There is a difference between having a drink at dinner and being an alcoholic. “Be not among winebibbers; among riotous eaters of flesh: For the drunkard and the glutton shall come to poverty: and drowsiness shall clothe a man with rags.” (Proverbs 23:20-21)

Few would argue the simple truth of this passage — drunkards seldom become the pillars of society or achieve great personal success.

This is more a warning and a statement of fact than a doctrinal statement.

Proverbs 23:29-35 describes alcoholism as a disease of the spirit long before it was recognized by 20th century society.

“Who hath woe? who hath sorrow? who hath contentions? who hath babbling? who hath wounds without cause? who hath redness of eyes? They that tarry long at the wine; they that go to seek mixed wine. Look not thou upon the wine when it is red, when it giveth his colour in the cup, when it moveth itself aright. At the last it biteth like a serpent, and stingeth like an adder. Thine eyes shall behold strange women, and thine heart shall utter perverse things. Yea, thou shalt be as he that lieth down in the midst of the sea, or as he that lieth upon the top of a mast. They have stricken me, shalt thou say, and I was not sick; they have beaten me, and I felt it not: when shall I awake? I WILL SEEK IT YET AGAIN.”

Assessment:

Everything in Scripture regarding alcohol refers to excess. From that, most Christians interpret it as an absolute prohibition against even a single drink containing alcohol. For them, as individuals in their personal walk with the Lord, that interpretation is correct.

But I remember watching John Hagee one day on his TV program. He pointed out to his audience and thundered, “If you smoke, you are defiling the Temple of the Holy Spirit.” That got me to thinking.

Most Christians I know would agree with his statement. But then you consider John Hagee’s girth, and you have to ask yourself, what about gluttony?

“For the drunkard and the glutton shall come to poverty: and drowsiness shall clothe a man with rags.” (Proverbs 23:21)

Is being fat a sin? What if one is fat, but neither smokes nor drinks? What about the person in perfect health, who takes excellent care of his Temple, but also has a couple of glasses of wine with dinner? Is his sin greater, or lesser, or even sinful? Who gets to decide? Is it us?

We hear tons of sermons about the spiritual evils of smoking and drinking. Why don’t we hear sermons about gluttony? I’ve noticed that when it comes to besetting sins, folks tend to focus on the besetting sin that isn’t theirs.

A preacher who smokes doesn’t dwell much on the sinfulness of smoking, one who drinks doesn’t dwell much on the sinfulness of drinking, and one who is fat doesn’t dwell much on the sinfulness of gluttony.

(I personally know good, dedicated men of God who are faithful to their calling who fall into one or more of the three categories).

One can smoke or drink, more or less in secret, but a glutton has a hard time hiding his sin, even when wearing dark suits. And try and picture the audience out front — there are a lot of delinquents from their Weight Watchers meetings sitting out there listening. So it is seldom preached as being evidence of sin.

In point of fact, we tend to categorize what is sinful behavior based more on our culture than on our Scriptures.

Where I live, it is widely assumed that nobody who drinks or smokes is really saved. On the other hand, out in California, there are many Christians who get together over a bottle of wine, and many others who smoke cigarettes openly.

Both the Catholics and Jews use wine as part of their religious rituals, as do a number of Protestant denominations. Christians in the Middle East and in Europe smoke AND drink.

“These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto Him: A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.” (Proverbs 6:16-19)

The seventh, and most abominable, is ‘he that soweth discord among the brethren.’

Paul writes; ‘Him that is weak in the faith receive ye, but not to doubtful disputations. For one believeth that he may eat all things: another, who is weak, eateth herbs. Let not him that eateth despise him that eateth not; and let not him which eateth not judge him that eateth: for God hath received him. Who art thou that judgest another man’s servant? to his own master he standeth or falleth. Yea, he shall be holden up: for God is able to make him stand. One man esteemeth one day above another: another esteemeth every day alike. Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind.” (Romans 14:1-5)

Paul is specifically addressing keeping kosher eating habits or keeping feast days, but in general, he is referring to religious legalism.

“But why dost thou judge thy brother? or why dost thou set at nought thy brother? for we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ.” (Romans 14:10)

“For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost. For he that in these things serveth Christ is acceptable to God, and approved of men. Let us therefore follow after the things which make for peace, and things wherewith one may edify another. For meat destroy not the work of God. All things indeed are pure; but it is evil for that man who eateth with offence. It is good neither to eat flesh, nor to drink wine, nor any thing whereby thy brother stumbleth, or is offended, or is made weak.” (Romans 14:17-19)

Jesus made each of us the way we are. Clearly, the Scriptures warn of the dangers of too much wine. It speaks of the penalty for defiling our body, which is the Temple of the Holy Spirit. It also says that if we defile our body, (the Temple) ‘him God will destroy’ (the body, or Temple, not one’s eternal salvation).

Scriptures make it clear that God understands the alcoholic, the habitual smoker, the glutton, and warns of the dangers that these excesses pose to the physical body, but Paul says the eternal consequences come from lack of faith that, “He which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:”(Phillipians 1:6)

“But to him that worketh not, but believeth on Him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.” (Romans 4:5)

“Hast thou faith? have it to thyself before God. Happy is he that condemneth not himself in that thing which he alloweth. And he that doubteth is damned if he eat, because he eateth not of faith: for whatsoever is not of faith is sin.” (Romans 14:22-23)

Each of us is constructed with built-in strengths and weaknesses, but each of us also has a unique relationship with our Savior.

It is a personal relationship, one between the individual and God, Who is the Author of both our strengths and weaknesses. He put them there. He understands them.

“And He said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for My strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” (2 Corinthinans 12:9)

“And he that doubteth is damned if he eat, because he eateth not of faith: for whatsoever is not of faith is sin.”(Romans 14:23)

“Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.” (James 4:17)

“All unrighteousness is sin: and there is a sin not unto death.” (1 John 5:17)

“All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.” (1 Corinthians 6:12)

“All things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but all things edify not.” (1 Corinthians 10:23)

Sin is what humans do. Forgive is what God does. That’s why we have a Savior.

So where am I going with this? Is it a sin for a Christian to have a drink with dinner, or to have a smoke afterwards? It would seem no more a sin than to eat a McDonald’s cheeseburger, brimming with fat, covered with a ‘cheese-food product that MAY contain cheese’ — as it says on the ingredients label.

Asking the Lord to bless a McDonald’s cheeseburger ‘as nourishment to our bodies’ is no less than asking God to perform a miracle and transform it into a health food that will edify the Temple of God. Is that a sin?

Weighing 300 pounds, is that a greater sin than drinking or smoking? The winebibber and glutton are always linked in Scripture as being equals. For one Christian to condemn another based on whether he smokes or drinks requires us to point an equally condemning finger at every overweight person with an eating disorder as being equally sinful.

Or not to point fingers at all.

Paul says that ‘all things are lawful’ to a Christian, and he says, ‘Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind.’

“And being fully persuaded that, what He had promised, He was able also to perform. And therefore it was imputed to him for righteousness. Now it was not written for his sake alone, that it was imputed to him; But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on Him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead; Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification.” (Romans 4:21-25)

“There is one lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy: who art thou that judgest another?” (James 4:12)

As I noted, this is a very difficult question. I did my best to let Scripture provide the answers, but only answer of which I am certain is that our relationship with Christ is personal — each of us comes to Him and is received by faith, not works.

The sinfulness of a drink with dinner is an issue between the individual and the Lord. To some, it is. To others, it is not. ‘Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind.’ It is not a very satisfactory, black and white answer. But it is the only answer that fits the Scripture.

To answer otherwise is to plead guilty to that seventh abomination before the Lord: ‘he that soweth discord among the brethren.’