The Ten Thousand Day War

The Ten Thousand Day War
Vol: 43 Issue: 30 Saturday, April 30, 2005

Thirty years ago, I sat with my comrades in our barracks community room watching on TV as the last helicopter lifted off from the US Embassy in Saigon, leaving behind thousands of loyal Vietnamese supporters who were most likely immediately executed by the victorious north.

Pretty much everyone above the rank of corporal sitting in that room had served in-country and probably all of us knew someone who died defending what ultimately became a lost cause.

In those final 24 hours before the United States abandoned the South Vietnamese to their fate, there were just fifty-two Marines left guarding the American Embassy near the Tan Son Nhut Air Base in Saigon.

On April 29, only twenty-four hours before the last Marines were evacuated, 19-year-old L/Cpl. Darwin Judge of Marshalltown, Iowa and Cpl. Charles McMahon of Woburn, Massachusetts earned the distinction of becoming the last two US Marines to lay down their lives in defense of their comrades. It was more than a year before their bodies were recovered and returned to the United States.

This morning’s papers are filled with recollections from veterans, most of whom continue to suffer from the demons that they can’t quite exorcise from their minds, even a lifetime after the conflict came to its unsatisfactory conclusion.

For the majority of Americans, Vietnam was a strategic blunder and a military misadventure that should never have happened. But it did happen, and it was a strategic blunder and a military misadventure because we lost.

Vietnam has morphed into what is now called the American ‘experience’ but Vietnam wasn’t an ‘experience’ — it was a war. And, despite claims to the contrary from the revisionists, it had a purpose.

The purpose was to prevent the Communist government of North Vietnam from imposing a Communist dictatorship on the South. That is contrary to the commonly-held belief that Vietnam was an evil war that America deserved to lose.

The War in Vietnam began during the Kennedy administration, escalated during the Johnson and first Nixon administrations, and ended when the Democrats in Congress voted to pull out and leave South Vietnam to the tender mercies of the communist North.

The Tet Offensive that so many credit as the reason for America’s defeat in Vietnam was a disastrous military defeat for the North and a massive military victory for the United States.

Groups like Vietnam Veterans Against the War turned on their country and their fellow veterans, and worked actively to secure an ignominious American withdrawal from Vietnam, betraying the South Vietnamese whose generation-long war of liberation ended in defeat and absorption by the Communists.

“In Vietnam, police reportedly killed hundreds of Christians at a peaceful prayer protest over Easter weekend. More than a thousand Christian Montagnards had been protesting religious repression and confiscation of their tribal lands.Vietnam’s communist government has been persecuting the Montagnards for years. One reason is because massive numbers of Montagnards have converted to Christianity since the early 1990s. A Montagnard Christian who escaped to the U.S. says his people are ‘crying out for freedom.’ ” — Christian World News, April 16, 2004.

THIS is what those 56,000-plus Americans who died in Vietnam died to prevent. We were in Vietnam to advance only one cause. Freedom. We failed.

Consequently, an entire generation has grown up knowing nothing but authoritarianism and the tyranny of the unelected. Vietnam was comprehensively hung out to dry, first by Western elite opinion, and then by governments that failed to stand firm against the combined force of that opinion.

In the end Saigon fell, not because of the popularity of the North Vietnamese cause, but because Washington lost its stomach for the fight and abandoned its ally.

The War in Vietnam was styled by Democratic politicians as a Republican conflict designed to feed the ‘military-industrial complex’ that all the long-haired pinheads of the era demonstrated against.

This fiction survived despite the fact that Kennedy and Johnson were Democrats, and Republican Nixon ended the war.

One can only wonder what Vietnam would have been, had we not abandoned the South.

What it is now is a backward, rotting tyranny surrounded by its much wealthier neighboring democracies who grow richer in freedom while the Vietnamese we left behind dream of escape from the Communist prison it became following our retreat thirty years ago.

Per capita income in the communist worker’s ‘paradise’ of Vietnam runs about $450 per year per worker, while inflation is running at about 14%.

It was thirty years ago today that the last helicopter lifted off from the US Embassy in Saigon.

Seems like yesterday.

Gog Visits Israel

Gog Visits Israel
Vol: 43 Issue: 29 Friday, April 29, 2005

Russian President Vladimir Putin announced Russian intentions to train and equip the Palestinan Authority during his visit to Israel this week.

During a joint news conference with Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas, Putin said “If we are waiting for President Abbas to fight terrorism, he cannot do it with the resources he has now. We will give the Palestinian Authority technical help by sending equipment, training people. We will give the Palestinian Authority helicopters and also communication equipment. We will bring Palestinian police for training.”

Russia is one of the four co-sponsors of the failed ‘roadmap for peace’, together with the United States, United Nations and European Union.

(Interesting alliance, in terms of Bible prophecy. Take a second and think about it. Based on the 1948 United Nations’ Declaration of Human Rights, the co-sponsors are Russia and America (Cold War, 1948-1990) the European Union (Benelux Treaty, 1948) and the bone of contention is the existence of Israel, (May 14, 1948).

The occasion is the ethnic cleansing of Jews from the Gaza Strip as part of Ariel Sharon’s ‘Disengagement Plan’.

Putin’s visit is historic; he is the first Russian leader to personally visit Israel.

Putin has made it known that Russia intends to become more involved in the peace process. The best way to help, decided the Russian leader, was to sell fifty armored personnel carriers and two helicopters to the Palestinian Authority.

Israel destroyed the Palestinian Authority’s helicopters in order to restrict the movement of Yasser Arafat after evidence of his role in terrorism could no longer be denied.

One of the first stops on Putin’s visit was to Arafat’s grave, where he laid a wreath inscribed with “From the president of the Russian Federation”.

I found this particularly interesting. At Arafat’s tomb, noted the Jerusalem Post, Putin stopped, and stood silently at attention, as if saying a prayer, then bowed, and walked away.

The move was clearly calculated to offend. Israel, (together with every thinking person on the planet) consider Arafat the father of modern terrorism. Putin afforded Arafat’s tomb honors no Russian president has ever offered, together with some semblance of ‘prayer’ and not one, but two separate bows.

While in Israel, Putin gave a press conference in which he proposed the convening of a Middle East peace conference in Moscow. Although it was immediately endorsed by the Palestinians, it met with little enthusiasm from the US or Israelis, which should have come as no surprise to the Russian leader.

During the press conference, Putin also announced Russia’s intentions to continue its nuclear cooperation with Iran. Adding insult to injury, Putin, (speaking from Israel, remember) said a nuclear Iran ‘did not threaten Israel’s security’.

“We intend to continue in all our programs with Iran because we believe such programs have peaceful ends,” he said.

Assessment:

According to Bible prophecy, Russia’s role in the Gog Magog War outlined by the prophet Ezekiel is as leader of a wider alliance of nations, all of which are predominantly Muslim.

“Persia, Ethiopia, and Libya with them; all of them with shield and helmet: 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)

According to Ezekiel, who was writing of a nation that, in his day, had not existed for 166 years and would not exist again for another 2,500 years;

“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.” (38:9)

The principle antagonist in Ezekiel’s scenario is “Gog, the chief prince of Meschech and Tubal.” Much has already been written on the details that identify Gog as modern Russia. Ezekiel’s ‘Ethiopia and Libya’ both exist to this day, although in Ezekiel’s time, they encompassed pretty much all of north Africa west of Egypt.

‘Gomer and Togarmah’ correspond to Turkey, Armenia and the various ‘stans’ of the southern Russian republic.

Putin made a point of visiting the security fence, described by the Palestinian Authority as Israel’s ‘apartheid wall’. The ‘wall’ is becoming a symbol of the intractable differences that make peace between Israel and the Palestinians impossible. As such, it will come down amid much fanfare, as did the Berlin Wall, when the antichrist confirms a covenant of seven year’s duration between Israel and ‘the many’. (Daniel 9:27)

This gives us an important clue regarding the time frame of Ezekiel’s scenario.

“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, To take a spoil, and to take a prey; to turn thine hand upon the desolate places that are now inhabited, and upon the people that are gathered out of the nations, which have gotten cattle and goods, that dwell in the midst of the land.” (Ezekiel 38:12)

In Ezekiel’s time, nations and city-states were defended by building walls around them to protect them from invaders. In modern times, such defenses are pointless. But in THIS generation, and, of all the nations on earth, in Israel, the symbol of the Arab-Israel conflict has become Israel’s ‘Wall’.

This is all coming together far too neatly to be dismissed as coincidence. At some point in the not-too-distant future, Israel’s wall will have to come down. Its existence has become a symbol of intractable hatred. Any peace deal, to be credible, will have to include the wall’s destruction as a symbol of peace.

Russia is putting its chips on the table. The Europeans already have. All eyes are on Israel, and, by extension, Jerusalem and the Temple Mount.

“And when these things BEGIN to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.” (Luke 21:28)

The King is coming!

Personal Witness

Personal Witness
Vol: 43 Issue: 28 Thursday, April 28, 2005

“In accordance with our plan a letter from Weitzman to Truman had been sent on May 13 asking him to recognize the new state. The expected infant was still nameless, since the Zionist leaders were still, characteristically, arguing over the name (should it be “Judea,” “Zion,” what about “Israel”?). Weitzman, for the first time in history, was asking for a nameless state to be recognized.” – (“Personal Witness” Abba Eban, p. 144)

“And say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I will take the children of Israel from among the heathen, whither they be gone, and will gather them on every side, and bring them into their own land: And I will make them one nation in the land upon the mountains of Israel; and one king shall be king to them all: and they shall be no more two nations, neither shall they be divided into two kingdoms any more at all.” (Ezekiel 37:21-22)

Abba Eban was Israel’s first representative to the United Nations, even before there was a state of Israel. Prior to declaring statehood, Eban was the Jewish Relief Agency’s official representative.

Eban served in the twin capacity of Israeli Ambassador to the UN and Israeli Ambassador to the US, before becoming Israel’s foreign minister.

Abba Eban was present for every major event in the life of the modern Jewish State from its inception until he left the Knesset in 1988.

Eban was known for his blunt honesty and no-nonsense attitude, having once told the UN General Assembly; “If Algeria introduced a resolution declaring that the earth was flat and that Israel had flattened it, it would pass by a vote of 164 to 13 with 26 abstentions.”

He had a way of putting things into perspective unmatched by his contemporaries. Speaking of the 1967 Six-Days’ War, Eban quipped; “I think that this is the first war in history that on the morrow the victors sued for peace and the vanquished called for unconditional surrender.”

Eban recounts that the Soviet Union, initially, enthusiastically supported the establishment of a Jewish State, while the United States very nearly withheld recognition, which would have doomed Israel to stillbirth.

President Truman, a crusty mid-Westerner with no particular love for the Jews, fought a pitched battle with Secretary of State George C Marshall, who told Truman in blunt terms;

“They don’t deserve a state, they have stolen that country. If you give this recognition, Mr. President, I may not vote for you in the next election.”

In the end, Truman decided, against the expressed and united opinion of his cabinet, to send a cable to Tel Aviv, assuring David Ben-Gurion of the US intention to recognize the new Jewish state. On May 14, Joseph Cohn, Chaim Weitzman s personal secretary, was dispatched to Washington to inform Truman that the name of the state he was about to recognize would be ‘Israel’.

As it grew apparent that the new Jewish state was looking westward to America, instead of east toward Moscow for its principle political alliances, the Soviets soured on the new state and turned instead to support Israel’s Arab enemies.

Among the punitive policies adopted by the Kremlin was a complete ban on emigration by Soviet-bloc Jews to the Jewish state.

Assessment:

From our perspective on the timeline, the restoration of Israel, and the events leading up to that restoration, are a matter of history.

There is no need to interpret or spiritualize or allegorize the events of Israel’s rebirth — there are plenty of personal witnesses besides Abba Eban’s.

Israel very nearly became a Soviet client state because of institutionalized anti-Semitism at the highest levels of the US government that threatened to derail recognition of Israel’s existence.

The subsequent friendship that developed between the new Jewish state and the United States resulted in a Soviet moratorium on Jewish emigration that lasted until the late 1980’s.

And, until the 11th hour, nobody, including the Jews, even knew what the name of the new Jewish state would be.

There are those who would argue that all Bible prophecy was fulfilled by AD 70 with the destruction of the Jewish Temple and the dispersal of the Jews.

What appears to be the fulfillment of Bible prophecy in this generation, the argument goes, is the consequence of misreading or misinterpreting the Scriptures.

That argument is belied by recent history, and, despite efforts to revise history, there are still too many personal witnesses who were there.

For example, the prophet Ezekiel wrote, sometime around the year 536 BC, that the Jews of the ‘latter years’ would be restored to their original homeland and would be known as the nation of Israel.

One hundred and sixty-six years before, Sargon II of Assyria besieged and divided Israel and Judea, capturing the Kingdom of Israel. Sargon II followed the practice of removing the nobles from a conquered land and settling them elsewhere. As a consequence, the nation of ‘Israel’ ceased to exist and its people became known to history as the ‘ten lost tribes’ of Israel.

When Nebuchadnezzar conquered Judea and settled Judean nobility in Babylon during Ezekiel’s lifetime, there was no reason to expect the Jews to escape the same fate as their Israelite cousins 166 years earlier.

But Ezekiel, under Divine inspiration, not only predicted the restoration of a Jewish State, he confidently predicted it would bear the name of a nation that had not existed for generations!

Even Israel’s Founding Fathers, like David Ben-Gurion and Abba Eban didn’t know what the new Jewish state would call itself — but Ezekiel knew the answer 2,500 years before — and said so, in writing.

The Soviet moratorium against Jewish emigration to the Holy Land meant that most Jewish migr s came from the Arab states to the east of Israel and those from the Western alliance countries.

Jews from the north (Moscow is due north of Jerusalem) and the Jews from the South (Africa) languished in their host countries, essentially as political prisoners of the Soviet system.

The prophet Isaiah, who lived at about the time of the destruction of the Northern Kingdom, prophesied:

“Fear not: for I am with thee: I will bring thy seed from the east, and gather thee from the west; I will say to the north, Give up; and to the south, Keep not back: bring my sons from far, and my daughters from the ends of the earth;” (Isaiah 43:4-5)

As noted, we are looking backward to Israel’s restoration as history. The Bible’s prophets were looking forward, thousands of years into the future.

Looking back, we can see that Israel’s ‘seed from the east’ began flocking to the Holy Land following the defeat of the Turkish Ottoman Empire in 1917.

Israel’s relationship with the West prompted the mass emigration of Jews from America. The Holocaust spurred a mass emigration of Jews from Western Europe.

It took the dissolution of the Soviet Union and the fall of the Berlin Wall to make the Soviets to the north ‘give up’. Egyptian Jews weren’t free to emigrate until after the 1977 Camp David Accords.

And it wasn’t until the mid 1990’s that places like Ethiopia, and Libya lifted their ban on Jewish emigration. Yemeni Jews were transferred enmasse, some 56,000 of them, during what Israel called “Operation Flying Carpet.” (“to the south, keep not back”).

In the past decade, members of what were believed to be one of the ‘Lost Tribes’ — the tribe of Dan — have turned up in Ethiopia.

Genetic testing has also determined that the men of the African Lemba tribe, a black, Bantu-speaking people, share the unique “Y” chromosome of the Cohanin, the Jewish priestly class descended from Aaron.

The Pathans of Afghanistan are believed by some to be descended from one of the Lost Tribes.

And the Chief Rabbi of the Sephardic Jews, Shlomo Amar recently determined that the Bnei Menashe community in India’s north-east is descended from the Lost Tribes and has formally declared them to be Jews. Many have since emigrated to Israel, and about 8,000 more are getting ready to do the same.

“And I will make them one nation in the land upon the mountains of Israel; and one king shall be king to them all: and they shall be NO MORE TWO NATIONS, neither shall they be divided into two kingdoms any more at all.” (Ezekiel 37:22)

It is no Scriptural sleight-of-hand trick, or a manipulation or misinterpretation of the Bible. The restoration of Israel — viewed from our vantage point as personal witnesses to recent history — is an EXACT match to the Bible’s description of how, when and where that restoration would take place.

The only difference is that of perspective. To the Bible prophets, it was future, whereas to we who are alive and remain in this generation, it is history past.

“And He spake to them a parable; Behold the fig tree, and all the trees; When they now shoot forth, ye see and know of your own selves that summer is now nigh at hand. So likewise ye, when ye see these things come to pass, know ye that the kingdom of God is nigh at hand.”

“Verily I say unto you, This generation SHALL NOT PASS AWAY, till ALL be fulfilled.” (Luke 21:29-32)

The Devil You Know. . .

The Devil You Know. . .
Vol: 43 Issue: 27 Wednesday, April 27, 2005

On February 14, 1945, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt met for the first time with King Abdul Aziz ibn Saud of Saudi Arabia. World War Two was practically over, and Roosevelt was turning his attention from wartime victory to peacetime prosperity.

Before 1942, the U.S. government had no official interest in Saudi Arabia, even though an American oil company had struck oil there in 1938 and had created a small community of American geologists, drillers and engineers to deliver the oil to global markets.

No American official of higher rank than minister in the diplomatic service had ever before encountered the bedouin monarch, and the king, in all his 64 years, had ventured no further out of the Arabian peninsula than Basra, in southern Iraq.

His domain was impoverished, isolated and backward; its levels of education, public health and mechanization were among the lowest in the world.

That first meeting is worth recounting. King Saud steamed toward his rendezvous with Roosevelt across Egypt’s Great Bitter Lake aboard the USS Murphy.

On a deck covered with colorful carpets and shaded by an enormous tent of brown canvas, a large black-bearded man in Arab robes, his headdress bound with golden cords, was seated on a gilded throne.

Around him stood an entourage of fierce-looking, dark-skinned barefoot men in similar attire, each with a sword or dagger bound to his waist by a gold-encrusted belt. On the Murphy ‘s fantail, sheep grazed in a makeshift corral.

Aboard the USS Quincy, President Roosevelt watched as King Saud’s throne (with him still sitting on it) was hoisted into the air and transferred from the Murphy to the Quincy where King Saud spent five hours in conference with President Roosevelt. Thus began the strangest US foreign relationship in history.

The strange, one-sided relationship between the House of Saud and US presidents continued through every successive administration from Roosevelt through to George Bush. It is a symbiotic relationship — the US needs Saudi oil, and the Saudis need US money. But there is no love lost between either side.

Michael Moore’s Fahrenheit 9/11 alleges that there exists a special relationship between the House of Saud and the Bush family, based in large part on a book published by Craig Unger called “House of Bush – House of Saud” that cites some $1.4 billion that he says was funneled to the Bush family, its friends and related businesses.

To arrive at that figure, Unger added together any money paid or contracted to any company that any affiliation with the Bush family or Dick Cheney. To that, he added any money invested by the Saudis in any company affiliated with the Bush family, no matter how remote.

Finally, Unger added together any charitable donations made by the Saudis to any charity affiliated with any Bush interests. Most of the $1.4 billion went to the Carlyle Group, of which the senior George Bush is part owner.

According to Unger (and Moore) the Bush family are just tools of the House of Saud. The facts are a bit different. First, the Bush family is rich — they have extensive holdings in lots of companies.

But at the time the Carlyle Group got most of their money, the Bush family was not yet involved with Carlyle. And Unger was unable to trace a single penny that went directly to any member of the Bush family.

Moreover, even Unger admits that, when it comes to Saudi largesse, the Bushes are amateurs compared to other American political dynasties.

President Clinton, for example, approached Prince Bandar in 1991 for $20 million to launch a Middle East studies program at the University of Arkansas. The request was approved by Prince Bandar during the 1991 election in which Clinton defeated the senior Bush.

Overall, Saudi Arabia contributed about eight times as much money to Clinton ‘charities’ as it has the Bush family.

But the photos of President Bush holding hands with Prince Bandar yesterday gives one pause to wonder.

Assessment:

Successive US administrations have tried hard to represent the Saudi government as a close US ally and a friend. Clearly, they are neither, but nobody in Washington will say it out loud.

There are a couple of reasons for this.

First, there is the principle of the devil you know . Better to deal with the devil you know, than a new devil that could be much worse.

Secondly, there is the politics of oil. Thanks to years of domestic political stupidity that puts the welfare of Alaskan caribou above national security, America is more dependent on foreign oil today than it was during the 1970 s OPEC crisis that crippled our economy for a decade.

US-Saudi relations, far from being that of friends and allies, is more analogous to that of a drug addict and his supplier. No friend is more important to the addict than his drug dealer.

To the addict, who needs what his dealer controls just to make it through one day, the dealer is the Main Man. No insult is too grave, no slight too painful for the addict to break that relationship. The addict just pretends it didn t happen and rationalizes it away.

It is from that relationship that the useful idiots extrapolate that the present US administration is the pocket of Big Oil, and is therefore evil.

It isn t the government this is addicted to oil, it is you and me.

A government that broke the relationship with our suppliers would last just long enough to be impeached by the addicts who put them in office.

Politicians of any party are elected primarily to ensure the free flow of the drug that fuels our oil-dependent economy. All parties of all political stripes, from the Republicans to the Green Party, are equally addicted to oil.

If they own a car, buy groceries, or travel further than they can ride a horse or a bike, they are all part of the oil addiction.

How would Americans react to paying fifteen bucks a gallon for gas at the pumps? What would that do to the price of a banana in Buffalo, NY?

It isn t like the thinkers in Washington are too stupid to figure this out for themselves but it is in America s best interests to pretend they can t.

John Bolton . . . A House Divided

John Bolton . . . A House Divided
Vol: 43 Issue: 26 Tuesday, April 26, 2005

John Bolton’s confirmation as the new US Ambassador to the UN continues to be in doubt as the opposition to his appointment continues to dig for witnesses that have an axe to grind against the former undersecretary of State for Arms Control.

Evidently, the major beef against Bolton, from the perspective of his confirmation opponents, is that he isn’t very nice man.

To prove it, the Left has sought out people who will confirm, “his blowhard personal dealings when he held personal government jobs, his bullying tactics against underlings and attempts to suppress opposite views about foreign policy and national security.”

That is how the Seattle Times Intelligencer described Bolton in an op-ed opposing his confirmation. Some examples of Bolton’s ‘blowhard personal dealings’ that the Left feels disqualifies Bolton from representing the United States at the UN include:

* Melody Townsel of Dallas, a former contract worker for the U.S. Agency of International Development, sent an open letter to the committee, accusing Bolton — then a private lawyer — of shouting threats and trying to intimidate her in an argument over her criticism of his client while both were in Moscow in 1994.

* Carl Ford, former chief of the State Department’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research, told the senators that Bolton is a “serial abuser who bullied subordinates. … an 800-pound gorilla.” He said Bolton “abuses his power and authority over little people.” “He’s a quintessential kiss-up, kick-down sort of guy,” Ford added.

Ford also accused Bolton of seeking dismissal of a State Department official with whom he disagreed.

And, most importantly of all, according to the Left, “[Bolton’s] appointment apparently sends shivers through the 190-member United Nations where Bolton’s reputation had already preceded him.” Horrors!

The International Herald Tribune slammed the Bolton appointment because he “clashed repeatedly with American intelligence officials in 2002 and 2003 as he sought to deliver warnings about Syria and its efforts to acquire unconventional weapons.”

A bit later in the story, however, the IHT admitted that, once Bolton had conferred with CIA officials, he removed any references to Syria from his comments.

So, to recap, the Left opposes Bolton because he marches in lockstep with the Bush administration, tends to run a tight ship and prefers not to have insubordinate subordinates.

They are afraid he will be undiplomatic with the UN in the event of a clash between US foreign policy and the UN agenda.

And they are upset that Bolton didn’t know what the CIA knew until AFTER the CIA told him, at which time he modified his speech.

Ummm . . . er . . . gee whiz! I think. Ummm. . . don’t we WANT an ambassador to the UN who will represent American, rather than UN interests? Isn’t that what an ‘ambassador’ does — represent the country that appointed him?

The UN has proved itself to be ideologically opposed to any policy that favors the US — to the degree that it opposes some US-led initiatives that are as much in the interests of the UN as they are in Washington’s interests.

Iraq SHOULD be a case in point. Saddam defied 17 UN resolutions. Washington saw Saddam’s government as a threat to regional stability and world peace.

So did the UN — at least ostensibly — since they did in fact, pass all 17 resolutions, each of which contained the choice between Iraqi compliance or military action against Saddam’s regime.

But the moment it became Washington’s goal to remove Saddam, it became the UN’s Holy Grail to prop him up and keep him in power.

Perhaps somebody like John Bolton may have asked why? Perhaps somebody like John Bolton might have brought up the Oil-For-Food irregularities in open session at the Security Council.

And if he had, perhaps the UN might have decided to support the Iraq War, removing the ‘international legitimacy’ label from the equation.

With UN support, the terrorist insurgency there may never have been able to get off the ground. Perhaps there would be fewer dead American soldiers.

There are a lot of ‘perhaps’ questions that were never addressed because of the incomprehensible leftist theory that, when there is a policy clash between the US and the UN, America’s ambassador should take the side of the United Nations.

Assessment:

An op-ed penned by Nancy Soderberg in the San Fransciso Chronicle ran under the revealing headline; “America’s Place on the World Stage –Time for Bush to Abandon Superpower Myth”. Soderberg was a former US Ambassador to the UN appointed by President Clinton.

Soderberg begins her piece by extolling the enlightened superiority of San Fransiscans over the rest of America.

“The citizens of San Francisco are different from the rest of America. Their demonstrations are the most vigorous, their mayors are all unique and you can’t beat their choice of surroundings. San Franciscans also voted for John Kerry over George W. Bush by 67 percent, compared with 48 percent of Americans elsewhere.”

Having established her bona-fides as a dyed-in-the-wool liberal, Soderberg continued;

“It is thus no accident that California’s Democratic Sens. Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein grilled Condoleezza Rice over her failures as national security adviser and the ber-unilateralist John Bolton during their nomination hearings. Referring to him as a “bully,” Boxer rightly asserted, “Mr. Bolton needs anger management at a minimum and he does not deserve to be promoted.”

Soderberg then made this astonishing statement: “Bay Area residents understand the dangers of extremism in Washington and the failures of Bush’s first term.” Lessee. “Extremism” — would deciding to perform gay marriages in defiance of existing state and federal law by the mayor of San Franscisco qualify as ‘extremism’? And, which ‘failures’ of the Bush first term does Soderberg consider paramount?

“U.S. policy in the past four years has been driven by the false belief that, as the lone superpower, the United States is powerful enough to bend the world to its will, largely on its own and through military means.” This failure to recognize the myth of American superpower is the reason, opines Soderberg, for the anti-American sentiment permeating the Muslim world.

It gives one pause to wonder . . . if Muslim terrorists didn’t have acres of column inches written by left-leaning American columnists prominently published in left-leaning American newspapers, would they have such a vast pool of anti-Americanized recruits from which to choose?

Which do you think would be the most effective in convincing a foreigner of America’s evil designs? A sermon given by an anti-American cleric whose anti-American views color every speech? Or a column published in America, written by an American, who systematically outlines a series of reasons to hate America?

If you didn’t know beans about America, who would be the most convincing? A cleric with no more experience with America than you have? Or reams of American newspapers that appear to confirm everything contained in the sermon against the Great Satan?

Especially those sneering written by arrogant, self-hating American liberals more than willing to give personal testimony to the accuracy of the mullah’s sermon?

In a nutshell, the liberal objection to John Bolton is that he will represent the Bush adminstration’s foreign policy at the United Nations.

One may or may not like the Bush administration’s foreign policy, but domestic politics is DOMESTIC, not international.

There is only one America represented at the United Nations, and America has only one head-of-state to speak for it. Once having entered the international arena, what are the alternatives choices to the Bush administration policy agenda?

Ummm . . . we could let the United Nations set the agenda. That’s one alternative. Another would be to insist that America’s representative to the UN be ideologically opposed to the administration’s foreign policy agenda.

A third alternative would be to let the ideology of the elected minority party set the US foreign policy agenda on the principle articulated by Howard Dean that, ‘the majority of Americans are Democrats, it’s just that the majority in Washington are Republicans’.

Those are alternatives to confirming John Bolton, who, according to his opponents, is unfit to represent the US at the UN because he is a Bush loyalist, something that Nancy Pelosi felt was prima facie evidence of Bolton’s unfitness. Bolton’s other chief disqualifying characteristics are that he is ‘abrasive’ and ‘uncompromising’.

Now, let’s get back to whether or not we are personally comfortable with Bush’s international agenda. In several areas, I am not. But I am much less comfortable with the concept that somebody else besides the elected administration is setting the international agenda.

The point here isn’t John Bolton. It isn’t even the president’s agenda. Its the breakdown of America’s political order into something resembling two separate countries with two opposing agendas under one roof.

Half the country is prepared to submit to the concept of global government right now. The worst epithet the opposition could throw at John Bolton is that he would be too loyal to the administration in his dealings with the UN. (?)

In essence, the question before the Senate is this. Which America should John Bolton represent to the global government? Red State America? Or Blue State America?

Somewhere, lost in the debate, is the UNITED States of America. And at the UN, it only gets one vote.

Married With Children? Probably Not a Liberal . . .

Married With Children? Probably Not a Liberal . . .
Vol: 43 Issue: 25 Monday, April 25, 2005

A Democratic think-tank, the Progressive Policy Institute, recently issued an analysis aimed at showing DNC deficiencies and offering suggested repairs to the party platform.

After years and years of ‘progressive thinking’, the Democrats are now scrambling for ways to distance themselves from the results of that thinking.

The Progressive Policy Institute is the policy arm of the Democratic Leadership Council. It noted with alarm that married voters with children tend to vote for the candidate who is the most outspoken about faith and morals.

In the 2004 election, married parents supported President Bush over Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry by nearly 20 percentage points. The analysis noted that Bush made faith, morals and child-raising issues more of a central part of his campaign than Kerry did.

And, in what I thought was an unusually candid admission for a liberal, the report noted that the overwhelming support Kerry received from liberals — particularly Hollywood liberals — hurt the Kerry campaign more than it helped it, especially among Democrats who were married with children.

Barbara Dafoe-Whitehead, who authored the report, is also the co-director of the National Marriage Project at Rutgers University.

According to Dafoe-Whitehead, “Democrats will not do better with married parents until they recognize one simple truth: Parents have a beef with popular culture. As they see it, the culture is getting ever more violent, materialistic, and misogynistic, and they are losing their ability to protect their kids from morally corrosive images and messages.”

I found the wording of the report as interesting as I did its candor. Despite hitting the nail squarely on the head, the wording of the report suggests it was an accidental stroke.

In noting that, ‘parents have a beef with popular culture’ Dafoe-Whitehead glossed over the fact that progressive liberalism was responsible for the degeneration of popular culture, saying, “As THEY [the married parents] see it . . . they are losing the ability to protect their kids.”

It is one of bedrock articles of the new faith of progressive liberalism that kids need to be protected from their parents, so the report is really only noting parental obstruction to their agenda, and suggesting ways to better conceal the ’cause and effect’ factor.

“To be credible, Democrats must acknowledge the legitimacy of parents’ beef and make it unmistakably clear that they are on the parents’ side.”

In other words, the plan is to admit that the culture of Hollywood liberalism is bad, but to find ways to convince parents it isn’t the liberal left’s fault.

It is a difficult balancing act, trying to distance oneself from the results of a policy while advancing the worldview that created the problem in the first place.

Writes Dafoe-Whitehead, “Democrats have been on the losing end of Republican appeals to a conservative cultural populism. Too often lately, the party does not counter these appeals but merely tries to change the subject, from cultural values to bread-and-butter issues.”

In the liberal worldview, ‘cultural values’ aren’t ‘bread and butter issues’ — it makes one wonder what ‘bread and butter’ issues are from the perspective of the left.

Assuming ‘bread and butter issues’ are those issues that most profoundly affect the quality of American life, the fact that ‘cultural values’ don’t make the cut is much too revealing about the liberal left’s worldview than they would be comfortable with — if they could but see it.

But they can’t. “But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.” (1st Corinthians 2:14) The proof is in the pudding:

The report recommended that Democrats “use the bully pulpit regularly and aggressively to identify with parents’ concerns and to attack the irresponsible marketeers of violence and sleaze to young kids.”

Recently, we discussed the word ‘cynicism’ and some of its synonyms, “acrimony, animosity, arrogance, bitterness, brashness, brass, brazenness, cheek, chutzpah, conceit, confidence, crust. .. “

Today, we’ll use it in a sentence; “The recommendation to ‘identify with parent’s concerns’ by attacking the ‘irresponsible marketeers’ of values that have been ADVANCED by the liberal left for decades is a perfect example of ‘cynicism’ in practice.”

As an example of what the study’s author meant by ‘attacking irresponsible marketers of violence and sleaze’, it pointed to an Illinois campaign to ban the sale of violent video games to anyone under age 18.

This is the SAME Democratic platform that decried the FCC response to Janet Jackson’s breast-baring episode as unconstitutional ‘censorship’ of the airwaves and is fighting to prevent the FCC from imposing content restrictions for sex and violence on broadcast networks and basic cable TV.

This is the same worldview that defends spending tax dollars to promote pornographic ‘art’ and no-talent ‘artists’ like Robert Serrano. When he got a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts for an exhibit of Jesus on a crucifix suspended in a jar of urine, the left defended it as ‘free speech’.

The only movie that ever prompted an organized anti-violence campaign to be mounted by the left was ‘The Passion of the Christ.’

When Quentin Tarantino’s movie, ‘Kill Bill’ was released, objections raised about its mindlessly violent content were dismissed as the rantings of the ‘religious-inspired right’.

But video-game manufacturers don’t have the visibility or clout of the Hollywood elite or the MTV lobby, so they are the logical choice for ‘irresponsible marketers of sleaze.’

After decades of advancing leftist feminist causes, including the deliberately-mislabeled ‘reproductive rights’ of women, Hillary Clinton is now calling on, ‘”people of good faith to find common ground” in the debate over abortion’ while speaking out in favor of “faith-based and religious organizations for promoting abstinence.”

This is the SAME Hillary Clinton who said in January, 2005;

“The Putting Prevention First Act, which I was proud to co-sponsor in the last Congress, increases funding for Title X; expands Medicaid family-planning services to provide access for more low-income women; ensures that health plans that cover prescription drugs also cover prescription contraceptives; funds emergency contraception public-education campaigns for doctors, nurses and women; ensures that hospital emergency rooms offer emergency contraception to victims of sexual assault; and establishes the nation’s first-ever federal sex-education program.”

Did YOU notice anything in there about ‘abstinence’ as a method of ‘preventing unwanted pregnancies’ in Hillary’s Master Plan?

Howard Dean, the Chairman of the Democratic National Committee and an outspoken supporter of gay marriage, gay rights, free abortions on request, recently railed against the GOP in Congress, telling a group in Florida;

“We need to kick the money changers out of the temple and restore moral values to America.”

Is he KIDDING?

A Pew Research poll conducted a survey of Dean’s supporters; 38 percent of Dean supporters polled said they had no religious affiliation, compared with 11 percent of all Americans; 91 percent supported same-sex “marriage,” compared with 38 percent of all Democrats; and 80 percent said they were liberals, compared with 27 percent of all Democrats.

Assessment:

As noted, the main focus of the Progressive Policy Institute analysis was the discovery of what the report called “a severe parent gap” among Democratic voters.

The ‘parent gap’ emerged in the 2000 election when George W. Bush bettered Al Gore by 15% among married parents. In 2004, Republicans increased their margin with George W. Bush winning 59% of the married parent vote to John Kerry s 40%.

The Democrats are struggling to come up with ways to close that gap, but they can’t because they just can’t understand what it is. One liberal writer tried to explain it away by calling married parents with children ‘lifestage conservatives.’

According to this view, “lifestage conservatism is rooted in parents’ responsibility to instill moral values in their children. They don’t want to deny the pleasures of the popular culture to other adults. They aren’t calling for censorship. But they do want to draw a boundary between what’s OK for adults and what’s OK for children in their formative years.”

As I said, they can’t bridge the gap because they don’t understand it. They believe that EVERYBODY thinks like they do, and the only reason that married parents go temporarily insane is because of their kids.

Anybody notice that in our culture, there is a separate demographic, — a minority demographic, mind you — for ‘married’ parents?

The weakest constituency among the liberal left is among those who are married with children, but the liberal left was STILL able to mount a voter campaign that coughed up more than fifty-five MILLION votes for uber-liberal John Kerry.

Think about that for a minute. Married voters with children is a demographic category so unique that it must be distinguished from the unmarried parents, single parents, gay parents and other alternative-lifestyle parenting arrangements that together constitute the majority of Democratic voters.

The Democrats hope to recapture some of that bloc, but by employing subterfuge, not substance.

Note again Hillary’s favorable COMMENTS about faith-based groups and abstinence education, but when she got to the SUBSTANCE of legislation that she co-sponsored, faith and abstinence were nowhere to be found.

When pressed on the subject, this is Hillary’s actual position on abstinence and faith-based morality.

“We should also recognize what works and what doesn’t work, and to be fair, the jury is still out on the effectiveness of abstinence-only programs. I don’t think this debate should be about ideology, it should be about facts and evidence — we have to deal with the choices young people make not just the choice we wish they would make.”

In other words, ‘abstinence’ doesn’t REALLY work, it is just an ‘ideology’ based in ‘wishful thinking’ — but it appeals to married voters with children, so why not?

In the end, the softening of liberal opposition to matters of faith and social values is only cosmetic. Howard Dean no more understands the theological significance of ‘money changers in the temple’ than he does the Bible Belt’s ‘obsession with guns, gays and God’ — but it sounds good in a speech.

As already noted, the ‘moral values’ Dr. Dean wants to restore to America include gay marriage, special rights for homosexuals, abortion on demand, etc., etc.

And the sincerity of his words are best gauged by the values shared by his most ardent supporters — an elected official gets elected because he is seen by the electors as the most representative of their own values.

They don’t believe in God, are almost unanimous in their support for abortion and gay marriage, and identify themselves — 8 to 1 — as ‘liberals’.

But try as they might, the Democratic effort to recast itself as the party of moral values falls flat, because the DNC leadership doesn’t understand the concept.

‘Moral values’ are expressed by what one does when nobody else is looking. ‘Morality’ implies responsibility before God — it is, at its heart, the expression of our God-given conscience.

The Apostle Paul wrote to Timothy, “Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron; Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth.” (1st Timothy 4:1)

Wow!

Paul covered the liberal agenda from the ACLU to PETA, describing a worldview that has ‘departed from the faith’, one at odds with married parents, ‘speaking lies in hypocrisy’ (Clinton, Dean, etc).

While in the same breath, criticizing faith-based moral values as ‘right wing ideology’ even as it divides its own ideology into ‘moral values’ vs. ‘bread and butter issues’.

Note also that Paul, in writing to Timothy, says that the “SPIRIT speaketh expressly” of society ‘in the latter times’.

It isn’t partisan or political to examine the tenets of a worldview that finds its fewest adherents among married parents and embraces everything the Scriptures oppose.

It is an obligation imposed on the Church of the last days.

Paul warned Timothy, and, by extension, the Church that sees the emergence of the society of ‘the latter times’;

“Meditate upon these things; give thyself wholly to them; that thy profiting may appear to all. Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee.” (1st Timothy 4:15-16)

No Red Union Suits, Either

No Red Union Suits, Either
Vol: 43 Issue: 24 Sunday, April 24, 2005

Yesterday, we discussed heaven, and how difficult a concept it is for we mortals to picture in our minds.

It is simply beyond our experiential capacity for us to step out of space and time and imagine eternity. It is even more difficult to imagine eternity in a place where there is no sin, no conflict, no sickness, no death, not to mention a place of eternal joy that never grows old.

Eternity is a long time, but ‘eternity’ is ‘a long time’ the way a billion dollars is ‘a lot of money’. It takes a carefully constructed word picture to bring it into focus.

I heard ‘eternity’ described this way, once, and it helped. Suppose a seagull were to take a grain of sand from the East Coast and drop it off on the West Coast. Every ten thousand years, our seagull would transport another grain of sand from the East Coast to the West Coast.

When every grain of sand on every beach on the entire East Coast has been transferred to the West Coast (one grain at a time, every thousand years), that would constitute the first ten seconds of eternity!

Mankind is created in God’s Image, according to Genesis 1:26, and after God’s likeness. But it doesn’t necessarily follow that we look like God, or that God looks like us.

Jesus revealed, “God is a Spirit: and they that worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth.” (John 4:24)

God’s ‘image’ and His ‘likeness’ refer to His eternal nature, not His cosmetic appearance.

Monkeys look as much like men as any of the other lower order of animals. They look enough like men to argue that, if man is in God’s image, then so are some species of monkeys.

Connecting the dots, then, Jesus tells us that God is a Spirit, and Genesis tells us that we were created in God’s Image and in His Likeness.

Scripture teaches that man was created with an eternal spiritual component.

A Spirit, in His Image, that is eternal in nature, in His Likeness.

That which is eternal is that which, by definition, cannot die, and cannot be killed. But it can be destroyed.

“And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear Him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” (Matthew 10:28)

Note the subtle shift in Our Lord’s Words when He moves from the temporal to the eternal. The body can die, the soul cannot be killed, but both can be ‘destroyed’ in hell.

There are those who teach that this means that hell isn’t a place of eternal torment, but rather a place where the condemned soul is annihilated.

The Bible speaks as much of hell as it does of Heaven; indeed, in His ministry, the Lord spoke MORE of hell than he did of heaven. Scripture divides ‘hell’ — as we understand it — into two phases.

There is hell, and then, later on, the Lake of Fire. “And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.” (Revelation 20:14)

It is the ‘Lake of Fire’ that some teach is the place of annihilation. The Scriptures teach otherwise.

We are created with an eternal element, as we’ve already established. That which is eternal cannot be killed, but it can be ‘destroyed’. But ‘destruction’ means eternal separation from God, not annihilation.

Jesus explained in the story of Lazarus and the rich man; “There WAS a certain rich man, which was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day: And there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, which was laid at his gate, full of sores. . . .”

Both of them died, the Lord explains, and each went to his place, Lazarus to Paradise, and the rich man to hell. “And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.” (Luke 16:19-20-23)

At the time of the story, Jesus had not yet redeemed humanity, and the righteous dead went to Paradise, which, the Lord taught, was separated from hell by a great gulf or chasm;

“And beside all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from hence to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come from thence.” (Luke 16:26)

At His Death, Jesus ‘descended into hell’ [which also included at that time, Paradise] in order to liberate the righteous dead and take them to heaven;

“Wherefore He saith, When He ascended up on high, He led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men. (Now that He ascended, what is it but that He also descended first into the lower parts of the earth? He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that He might fill all things.)” (Ephesians 4:8-10)

Once the righteous dead were taken to heaven, hell was expanded to make room. Those in hell will be ‘cast into the Lake of Fire’ at the second death, the Scriptures say.

There are those who will point out that the word ‘hell’ (sheol) has two meanings; it means both ‘the grave’ and the place where departed spirits go. So they argue that hell is not really a literal Bible teaching.

“In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of His power.” (2nd Thessalonians 1:8-9)

Note the phrase ‘everlasting destruction’ and reconcile that, if you can, with the idea of ‘annihilation’. It takes some real imaginative interpretation to get there from here.

‘Everlasting destruction’ isn’t the same as ‘annihilation’ — which is instantaneous and permanent. And things that are different are NOT the same.

Hell is a place of punishment that the Lord described THREE times, using exactly the same words; “Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched.” (Mark 9:44,46,48) When the Lord chooses to repeat Himself, it is because He wants to make sure we get it right.

Jesus said the rich man was ‘in torments’, desiring that Lazarus “dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue, for I am tormented in this flame.” (Luke 16:23)

So, from our Lord’s Lips to our ears, we know it is a place of torment, involving ‘flames’ where ‘their worm dieth not’. Jude 13 reveals it is a place of eternal darkness.

While those in heaven will meet and recognize their loved ones, those in hell will spend eternity like the unidentified rich man, nameless, alone and in utter darkness.

The story of the rich man reveals hell to be a place of consciousness, a place of eternal remorse, a place without hope, a place of wailing and gnashing of teeth, and a place of eternal flame.

Jesus says of the hellbound sinner that it would be “better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he were cast into the sea.” (Mark 9:42)

Jesus said of Judas that “woe unto that man by whom the Son of man is betrayed! it had been good for that man if he had not been born.” (Matthew 26:24)

Hell is worse than violent death and worse than having ever been born at all. Jesus’ words make no sense if Judas were facing ‘annihilation’ in hell. How could NOT existing (annihilation) be worse than never existing?

On the other hand, eternal torment would be MUCH worse than never having existed at all. The difference is obvious without having to conduct any special Scriptural gymnastics to prove it.

And if the plain sense of Scripture makes perfect sense on its face, why seek a different sense?

Hell is given over to the Lake of Fire at the second death at the conclusion of the thousand year Millennial Kingdom Age. The beast and the false prophet are cast alive into the Lake of Fire, where, Revelation 20:10 says that “they shall be “tormented day and night for ever and ever’ — not annihilated.

Eternal life and eternal death are two sides of the same coin in that they are BOTH eternal, since we are created in God’s Image, which is eternal Spirit.

It is often argued that, ‘a loving God wouldn’t send people to hell’ — and that argument sounds logical because it is true. A loving God wouldn’t send people to hell — and He doesn’t.

A loving God would provide an escape from eternal condemnation, which is different than expecting Him to change the nature of the punishment.

Hell was created as a prison and place of punishment for the rebellious angels. When man joined in the rebellion, he condemned himself to share their prison.

But “God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16)

Heaven doesn’t require cream cheese to make it heaven, and there are no red union suits in hell. Both are real and both are eternal because we are eternal and, as eternal beings, we have to continue our existence somewhere.

God prepared a place for those who love Him and who want to spend eternity with Him. And He created a place for those who reject Him and rebel against His rule.

And He gave us a free choice to decide which we would prefer.

We are the watchmen on the wall. For those of us that know the truth, that is an awesome thing to contemplate. It rekindles a sense of urgency for the lost.

“But if the watchman see the sword come, and blow not the trumpet, and the people be not warned; if the sword come, and take any person from among them, he is taken away in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at the watchman’s hand.” (Ezekiel 33:6)

The Omega Letter’s mission is to prepare the saved for the work of the ministry by comparing the Scriptures to the signs of the times and providing evidence of the lateness of the hour and the soon coming of the Lord.

Our secondary mission is to examine the deeper truths of Scripture so that we are better prepared to answer the skeptic’s questions and make clear the choices that are set before him.

It is incumbent upon us to be prepared, “and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:” (1 Peter 3:15)

May God continue to sustain and provide for us as we continue in our mission.

Until He comes.