And Then There Were Ten . . .
Vol: 44 Issue: 31 Tuesday, May 31, 2005
In a dramatic broadcast last week, French President Jacques Chirac told his countrymen; “The first consequence of voting ‘no’ will be that Europe stops in its tracks.”
As it happens, the first consequence of voting ‘no’ fell on the French Prime Minister, who Chirac immediately fired and replaced with Dominique DeVillepin.
DeVillepin came to global prominence as the French Foreign Minister during the run-up to the ’03 Gulf War. It was DeVillepin who privately assured Colin Powell that France would back the US before publicly doublecrossing Powell by threatening a UN veto of a war resolution.
(In France, doublecrossing the US works wonders for political careers. DeVillipin was a career diplomat, being appointed to each government post he’s held, including his new one as French prime minister.)
The second consequence of the ‘no’ vote by France was a drop in the value of the euro, which fell to a seven month low on the news. (The euro dipped even further when Chirac announced DeVillepin’s appointment)
Derek Halpenny, senior currency economist at Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi was quoted in the Financial Times noting the effect of the French referendum on Dutch opinion polls.
The Dutch opposition to ratification has hardened, which he says, “places more significant doubts on the future direction of the EU with 25 members rather than the initial 15.”
A snap poll yesterday showed the Dutch “no” camp had been strengthened by the French outcome, with 59 percent now planning to reject the constitution. The Maurice de Hond institute, which conducted the poll, noted, “The chance of a majority voting for the constitution in the Netherlands has become very slim.”
The referendum will be the first in the Netherlands in more than 200 years. The polls indicate a growing disconnect between public opinion and that of elected politicians. Almost 60% of the public opposes ratification.
But the constitutional is supported by 80% of Dutch parliamentarians. And the Dutch referendum isn’t binding — it is merely ‘consultative’. That means that the Netherlands is free to ignore the referendum’s results if it so chooses.
In the UK, Tony Blair is calling on his countrymen to ‘reflect’ on the French rejection, saying the vote has raised ‘profound questions’ about the future of Europe.
“But I think that underneath all this there is a more profound question, which is about the future of Europe and, in particular, the future of the European economy and how we deal with the modern questions of globalization and technological change.”
Blair’s questions become even more profound in light of the fact that Blair takes over the EU’s rotating presidency July 1st. That means it will be up to Blair to sort out what comes next for the EU.
Most European newspapers reflect the sentiments of today’s headline in the UK’s Scotsman; “Dutch Voters Set to Deliver Death Blow To EU Treaty.”
As noted, that isn’t necessarily true, as the Dutch government can choose to ignore the results of the referendum if it goes badly, although it says it will ‘consider’ the results if the turnout exceeds 30% of eligible voters.
I’m not sure exactly what that means — and neither does anybody else.
What the vote did was further establish the existence of two Europes — Donald Rumsfeld’s famous ‘Old Europe’ and the ‘New Europe’ emerging from the old Soviet bloc. Noted Polish commentator Krzystof Bobinski, “a lot of the smaller member states are saying, ‘Why should France take the decision for everyone?’ “
The EU could survive without a constitution, operating under the authority of the Nice Treaty concluded in December 2000.
But that would most likely speed up a French-German proposal of ‘Core Europe’ — an alliance of EU nations bound together and sufficiently unified to constitute a real force in the world, with a clear place on the global stage and a definite role as a counterweight to American global dominance.
The Bible predicts the emergence in the last days of a ten-nation confederacy that will arise from the old Roman Empire.
The prophet Daniel had a vision of four great beasts; a lion with eagle’s wings, a bear, a winged leopard with four heads and;
“a fourth beast, dreadful and terrible, and strong exceedingly; and it had great iron teeth: it devoured and brake in pieces, and stamped the residue with the feet of it: and it was diverse from all the beasts that were before it; and it had ten horns.” (Daniel 7:4-7)
History identifies the first four beasts as Babylon, Medo-Persia, Alexander’s Greek Empire and the Roman Empire. The ten horns correspond with the ten toes on Nebuchadnezzar’s image, recorded in Daniel Chapter 2.
Daniel interpreted the two legs of iron of the king’s image as a ‘fourth kingdom’ out of which would arise an inferior incarnation symbolized by the images feet and toes.
“And whereas thou sawest the feet and toes, part of potters’ clay, and part of iron, the kingdom shall be divided; but there shall be in it of the strength of the iron, forasmuch as thou sawest the iron mixed with miry clay.” (Daniel 2:41)
Daniel also identifies the time frame in which this final confederation of ten kings would rule, saying;
“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)
So the confederation of ten kings will rule until the Lord returns to set up the Millennial Kingdom. That seems pretty cut and dried. But, as skeptics are fond of pointing out, the EU has enlarged to over 25 ‘kingdoms’ so far and counting. The WEU has 28 members, although only ten of them hold ‘full member’ status.
John describes the same ten kings in Revelation 17, identifying them as a ‘beast’ with seven heads and ten horns, upon which “Mystery Babylon, the mother of harlots and abominations of the earth” is carried.
Staying with the ‘woman’ John notes, ” here is the mind which hath wisdom. The seven heads are seven mountains, on which the woman sitteth.” (Revelation 17:9).
There is only one city of the ancient world that is specifically known as the City on Seven Hills. If you don’t believe me, “Google” the following phrase, “city on seven hills”. It is one of the traditional titles for the city of Rome. Rome has been known by that title since before the time of Christ.
It was revealed to John that the “ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings” and, strengthening Daniel’s identification of them as ruling until the Lord’s return, John continues, “which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast. These have one mind, and shall give their power and strength unto the beast.” (Revelation 17:12)
The French vote may well have the domino effect now being predicted by the Europlanners for the greater EU, but the disintegration of the EU would leave the Western European Union unchallenged as Europe’s collective representative.
The Western European Union, you’ll recall, consists of ten full members, six associate members, five observers and seven associate partners. And, as WEU’s website notes at the bottom of the ‘delegations’ page;
“Following a decision taken on 14 June 2001, the Secretary-General stated during the 1352nd meeting of the Council of Western European Union on 28 June 2001 that, with regard to the period from 1 January 2002, the Member States deemed it unnecessary, in present and foreseeable circumstances, to make any formal change to the statuses of non-full members.”
In other words, no matter who else may join the WEU, full membership in the WEU will always be limited to the original TEN.
The point is this: whether the EU implodes or not, the TEN are already in place.
And it is during the days of THESE kings that the God of heaven will set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed.
“And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed.” (Romans 13:11)