Fatah and Hamas Set to Reconcile

Fatah and Hamas Set to Reconcile

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Is a ‘Hamastan’ government about to be formed?

Delegations from Hamas and Fatah met in Cairo to discuss forming a unity government on January 17. The meeting saw the implementation of agreements signed between the two parties that set a timetable for Palestinian unity. They expressed a wish to have the unity government idea revived by the end of January. The groundwork was laid for reconciliation back in 2011, but negotiations broke down.

There has been friction between the two parties ever since Hamas ousted the ruling Fatah faction from Gaza in 2007. As the dust from the fighting began to settle, Hamas was throwing Fatah members off rooftops, and Fatah was carrying out reprisals in the West Bank. So when talks of unity between the two factions began, much of the world reacted with doubt.

However, since 2007, things have changed. On November 29 last year, the Palestinian Authority managed to secure its “observer status” in its ongoing quest for statehood. The end of 2012 also saw international sympathy for Gaza spike dramatically during Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense.

Now the conditions for an alliance appear to be in place. Mahmoud Abbas, Fatah leader and Palestinian National Authority president, may hope to glean some of that international sympathy in forming a transitional government with Hamas. And since Hamas has been significantly crippled by the Israeli strikes on its government and military infrastructure, an alliance with the Palestinian Authority would bolster its ailing government. A shared hatred of Israel also lends itself to the formation of a unified government.

During the Cairo talks, there were agreements made to discuss the release of prisoners, resume registering voters in Gaza, and stop attacking one another through the media. These are all significant first steps in mending the relationship between the divided factions.

If Hamas and Fatah resolve their differences, Israel will feel the Islamic noose around its neck tighten. This threat is something Israel can’t afford to ignore. Whether a Palestinian unity government forms in the immediate future or not, the unifying of the two factions is one more step toward the fall of East Jerusalem to the Palestinians. To understand this impending conflict between Israel and the Palestinians, read Jerusalem in Prophecy.

Europe—Defining How the World Works

Europe—Defining How the World Works

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Of all the key regions of the world, it is Europe that is set to dominate the developing global order in 2013.

“Taken as a single geographic entity, Europe has the largest economy in the world. Should it choose to do so, it could become a military rival to the United States. Europe is one of the pillars of the global system, and what happens to Europe is going to define how the world works. I would argue that in 2013 we will begin to get clarity on the future of Europe.”

So states George Friedman, ceo of respected think tank Stratfor (January 3).

The tendency for Bible prophecy for our times to be so rapidly coming to fulfillment, daily, at present, would seem to support Dr. Friedman’s contention “that in 2013 we will begin to get clarity on the future of Europe.”

Three elections will be held in nations that play a key role in end-time prophecy this year—Israel on January 22, Italy in February and Germany in September. The leaders elected will find themselves enmeshed in the rapid-fire consummation of many of the Bible prophecies for our time, each of these nation’s political machinations impacting the other. The key political role influencing the geopolitics of each of the others will be played by Germany.

Israeli elections will see that country’s leader elected for a four-year term, though given the volatility of Israeli politics few prime ministers hold the job for that term before another election is forced upon them.

It would seem that incumbent Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is set to win the January 22 vote. Thus we should expect little change in the foreign-policy direction of this nation in the immediate term. The result will be continuing strain with the American administration and an increased tendency to look to Europe for the support traditionally given to this benighted nation by the United States. This will particularly be the case as EU foreign policy (read Germany) centers on the Middle East and North Africa in 2013.

Elections for an Italian prime minister will be held in February. Already the pope has endorsed Jesuit-educated technocrat Mario Monti as his choice. If Monti succeeds, look for a strengthened alliance between him, central banker Mario Draghi and EU President Herman Van Rompuy in relation to the endorsement of further centralization of the EU economies at the expense of the loss of the national sovereignty of eurozone nations.

In September, Chancellor Angela Merkel’s sputtering political career as Germany’s chancellor shall probably end at the German federal elections. With the mood turning ugly both within Germany and in Europe about the current nature of the German psyche, the time is rapidly developing for the rise of a populist leader in that nation (Spiegel, Dec. 13, 2012).

Of all three of the vital national elections being held this year, it is the German election which has the most potential to impact international relations over the next few years. This is especially the case as German and Italian politics will tend to merge in supporting the vision of Europe’s imperialist elites under increasing influence from Rome.

Put this together with George Friedman’s claim that Europe could—should it choose to do so—as “the largest economy in the world,” become also “a military rival to the United States,” and it becomes a worrisome prospect that with Europe “as one of the pillars of the global system,” it will be in a powerful position, given the right leadership, “to define how the world works” (op. cit.).

All those statements are in direct alignment with Bible prophecy for our times!

For over 70 years we have trumpeted—first under Herbert Armstrong, and latterly under our current editor in chief, Gerald Flurry—the rise of a powerful European combine, under the leadership of Rome and Berlin, which would dominate the globe economically, financially, commercially and militarily. This is in exact accordance with the prophecies for our time as revealed in Revelation 13 and 17, and Daniel 8 and 11.

The fact that one of the brightest geopolitical minds on the scene today recognizes much of this potential is worthy of taking note. What is so much to the point in considering the direction of Europe from here on is the statement by Friedman that “If, however, Europe does emerge with a plan that has general support and momentum behind it, then we might say that Europe is beginning to emerge from its crisis, and that, in turn, would be the single most important thing that happens in 2013” (ibid).

Yet it is hard to see that such a plan would have any prospect of coming to fruition unless Europe has the quality of leadership in place to not only endorse it but to strong-arm it into reality. This is why we propose that such an event may have to wait till the outcome of this year’s federal elections in Europe’s leading nation—Germany.

All the prophetic indications lead to the conclusion that it will be a powerful Germanic leader that causes the final configuration of a militarily dominant European entity to coalesce into 10 separate regional groupings all rendering their support to a single overarching leader (Revelation 13, 17). Ultimately, this will be the “plan that has general support and momentum behind it,” to quote Stratfor.

So, what to watch for in 2013?

Watch January 23 for the outcome of the previous day’s elections in Israel, and watch the reaction of extremist Islamist groups to that result place Israel under huge pressure to seek out an alliance with the EU—especially its leading nation, Germany—to replace its ailing relationship with the U.S.

Watch the outcome of the Italian elections on February 24 and 25. If Monti—the pope’s man—gains office, then the linkage between the Vatican and the leader of old Chaldea will be strengthened significantly. This, in turn, will give a powerful boost to the confidence of imperialist Catholic European elites—especially in Germany—who are the real movers and shakers behind the scenes in Europe.

The upshot could well have significant effect on the outcome of the German elections in September.

As we have consistently declared, Europe is now ruled by a Rome/Berlin axis. France has been rapidly diminished in political stature in Europe since the Hollande liberal-socialist regime was voted into office.

These vital elections take place amid a Europe in crisis. As George Friedman writes (ibid):

People are not being asked to die on a battlefield for the European Union but to live lives of misery and disappointment. In many ways that is harder than being brave. And since the core promise of the European Union was prosperity, the failure to deliver that prosperity—and the delivery of poverty instead, unevenly distributed—is not sustainable. If Europe is in crisis, the world’s largest economy is in crisis, political as well as financial. And that matters to the world perhaps more than anything else.

The reason it matters to the world is the history of what such crises tend to produce in Europe. History reveals that crises of this nature have huge potential for dislocating the whole global system.

The rapidly escalating conflicts in North Africa are bound to enmesh Europe—especially Germany, which has been deeply entrenched in that continent for many a decade—to take on a more assertive role in their resolution. At stake is the guarantee of continuing reliable oil supplies to the EU.

For the second time in less than a century, Europe is on the brink of unleashing the effects of a deep crisis on the rest of the world. The results, in the short term, will be catastrophic beyond imagination. Yet the wonder of it all is that this is but the major harbinger of the replacement of the whole global system by a future system of global peace and order such as man has longed for since creation.

For the deepest insight into the causes and effects of this whole European scenario, read our booklets Germany’s Conquest of the Balkans and Germany and the Holy Roman Empire.

Herbert W. Armstrong Toured Adolf Hitler’s Nuremberg Nazi Party Rally Grounds

Herbert W. Armstrong Toured Adolf Hitler’s Nuremberg Nazi Party Rally Grounds

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The World Tomorrow TV crew filmed segments for international broadcast.

Herbert W. Armstrong arrived in Munich from Israel on Thursday, May 16 1985. Two days prior, while in Jerusalem, he made the last edits to what would be his final and finest book, Mystery of the Ages.

On May 17 while in Germany, Mr. Armstrong met with former emperor of the Holy Roman Empire and respected EU parliamentarian Otto von Habsburg, who had brought with him his youngest son, Georg, a Munich university law student at the time. The two had met previously at Ambassador College in Pasadena and also in the Belgian capital, Brussels. The majority of the 90-minute meeting was recorded by the World Tomorrow television crew and incorporated into a special program later that year.

“On the Sabbath, Mr. Armstrong spoke to over 530 brethren from all over the German-speaking area in the Cherubim Hall of Munich’s Hotel Vierjahreszeiten. He began by commenting on the Church choir’s special music ‘Let There Be Peace on Earth,’ then proceeded to give a very encouraging sermon reassuring us that we have the truth and that world peace will come soon. Mr. Armstrong also whetted everyone’s appetite by outlining for us his new book, Mystery of the Ages. The German audience was also thrilled to hear him speak a few words of German he had learned some 70 years ago” (Pastor Generals Report, July 7, 1985).

From 1927 through 1939, the nsdap, or Nazi Party, held its rallies in an 11-square-mile area of Nuremberg. After 1933, these events were titled the National Congress of the Party of the German People, whose purpose was to focus on Adolf Hitler, purportedly chosen by design from above to cleanse Europe of its Jews and establish a thousand-year Teutonic Reich. The thronged masses numbering up to 150,000 witnessed their Führer’s fiery tirades, pledged loyalty and paraded before their leader. The rallies served as powerful propaganda not only within Germany, but also via film and audio as a witness to the world of Deutschland’s mighty power.

This trip to Nuremberg in May would impact members of the Worldwide Church of God during their annual Feast of Tabernacles observance in late September. The convention was the largest and longest running conference of its type and was observed by over 100,000 people at 92 sites spanning 50 countries. During his last Feast of Tabernacles, Mr. Armstrong approved a segment of the Behind the Work film to center upon the prophesied final resurrection of the medieval Holy Roman Empire (Daniel 2, 8, 11; Isaiah 47; Revelation 13, 17-19).

The two-hour video production culminated with approximately seven of the final ten minutes devoted to video of Hitler’s famed rallies in Nuremberg. As the pictures rolled, the venerated voice of The World Tomorrow, Art Gilmore, narrated, “His Third Reich was soon to lunge out at Europe and hold it captive for five nightmare years.

“Hitler drew inspiration from ancient Rome; even his architecture was inspired by the styles of the caesars. Before this ninth fearsome horn of the empire had been crushed in the ruins of racism and the Third Reich, much of Europe had been reduced to rubble.”

As the video footage captured that May 19 in Nuremberg played, Mr. Gilmore continued, “Forty years later there is little left to remind the visitors of the ravages of war. The place where Hitler once goaded his people into frenzy is now a park where old people stroll and children play.”

“Close by, the review stand at Zeppelin field, where the legions of the Third Reich paraded before their Führer, is now in ruins,” listeners heard, while video of Mr. Armstrong visiting this site played for the thousands of viewers gathered at festival sites worldwide.

The production concluded by reminding the membership—which supported, to the tune of over $200 million per year, the mass circulation Plain Truth magazine as it peaked at over 8 million subscribers, the World Tomorrow program broadcast on over 400 stations, Ambassador College and the Ambassador International Cultural Foundation—that one final resurrection of this Holy Roman Empire, a combine of church and state, would arise to rule and thereafter be reduced to abject ruins by the returning Jesus Christ as King of kings and Lord of lords (Daniel 2:44; Revelation 17:14; 19:16).

The past 27 years of fulfilled prophecy, as declared by Mr. Armstrong beginning in January 1934, have seen the fall of the Berlin Wall resulting in the reunification of Germany, collapse of the ussr and rapid advancement of the European Union. These irrefutable prophecies of your Bible and documented facts of history enabled our editor in chief to declare on Jan. 1, 2010, that the final resurrection of this empire had begun!

As regular readers are aware, we have warned and encouraged our readers to watch for a powerhouse, domineering Germany to continue calling the shots in the euro crisis; to watch for that nation to soon weary of the bloc’s weaker nations, including anti-EU Britain; to watch for the sudden rise of a German-centric, Vatican-guided, streamlined United States of Europe to replace today’s cumbersome 27-nation EU; and to watch for that powerful European empire to have the stamp of the making and design of both Rome and Berlin etched deeply into its core. For vivid detail of this assured prophecy, request your free copy of Gerald Flurry’s compelling booklet Nahum: Prophecy for Germany.

Germany Trains for Desert Warfare

Germany Trains for Desert Warfare

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The German Air Force completed two major training exercises in the United Arab Emirates (uae) last month, as it draws closer to its Middle Eastern allies and gains operation experience in the region.

Nearly 40 German Air Force personnel participated in the “Common Sky 2012” exercises—a simulated defense against a Middle Eastern aggressor. Held from December 9 to December 20, the exercises also involved a similar number of personnel from the uae .

The maneuvers were a thinly disguised attack on Iran. In the scenario, a friendly Gulf nation is attacked, and Germany rushes to the rescue. The maneuvers focused on these two nations working together against the common enemy.

The second exercise was the Advanced Tactical Leadership Course, held from November 18 to December 13. Here the German Air Force trained alongside Saudi Arabia, Qatar, the UK and the United States. Nearly 200 personnel from Fighter Bomber Wing 31 “Boelcke” took part.

This was the first time Germany had tested the Eurofighter under desert conditions, according to German-Foreign-Policy.com. Other aircraft, including the F-15, F-16, Mirage and British version of the Eurofighter, took part.

The exercises included 92 planned missions, involving a total of 1,400 flight hours.

Both of these exercises used the uae’s Air Warfare Center at the Al Dhafra Air Base. “The German Air Force loves this facility,” writes German-Foreign-Policy.com, “not least of all because there are hardly limitations on low-level flying and risky operations in the Emirates, and it provides authentic conditions for desert operations in the Gulf region.”

It also speculated that the use of the German Eurofighter was part of German efforts to sell the uae around 60 Eurofighters. This would help Germany’s arms manufacturing industry and further cement its relationship with the uae.

Germany has consistently taken part in training exercises in the uae over the past few years. It held operations similar to the Common Sky 2012 missions in 2009. It participated in the Advanced Tactical Leadership Course in 2008. German soldiers have been training at the Air Warfare Center for years. The two nations signed a “strategic partnership” with a focus on “cooperation agreement in the military sector” in 2005.

The German military is quietly making sure it is prepared for a war in the Middle East, as well as building an alliance of Islamic countries ready to confront Iran. For more information on this important trend, see last week’s article “Germany’s Rise … and Rise to Power!

Germany Repatriates Gold From France and U.S.

Germany plans to repatriate tens of thousands of gold bars worth approximately 36 billion U.S. dollars. The gold is currently stored in the United States and France.

Last year, Germany’s Federal Auditors’ Office criticized its central bank for failing to properly oversee its gold.

In response, Germany’s central bank said on Wednesday that it will retrieve all 374 tons of the bullion it currently keeps in Paris. It said that the gold will be back inside its vaults in Frankfurt by 2020.

The Bundesbank said it will also repatriate another 300 tons of gold currently being stored at the New York Federal Reserve Bank.

The eight-year process will bring about 19 percent of Germany’s gold reserves back to the Fatherland. Germany holds 3,400 tons of gold reserves—the most of any country, after the United States.

When the process is complete, Frankfurt will hold half of Germany’s gold. New York will retain 37 percent, and London will store 13 percent.

Berlin is probably only beginning to repossess its gold reserves. The Bundesbank’s announcement indicates that German leaders believe the global economic crisis may soon intensify.

On January 15, the Telegraph’s Ambrose Evans-Pritchard said that the move represents “an extraordinary breakdown in trust between leading central banks.” Evans-Pritchard compared Germany’s actions to what happened in the 1960s, when the postwar currency system fell apart and France withdrew its gold from the United States.

Precious metals analyst Jim Sinclair said that the Bundesbank announcement may herald the end of the global fiat dollar system. Sinclair said that France’s actions in the ’60s caused American financial leaders to panic. “History will look back on this salvo as being the beginning of the end of the U.S. dollar as the reserve currency of choice,” he said.

For more information on why Germany wants its gold back now, read Gerald Flurry’s article, “Did the Holy Roman Empire Plan the Greek Crisis?

A Major Cause for the Wimpification of Men

A Major Cause for the Wimpification of Men

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Time wasters tailor-made to suck the life out of the male mind

The wimpification of men is one of the most destructive trends in modern times. As women surge ahead in field after field, boys and men are passively watching it happen. Many of them, rather than working to stay ahead of or even keep up with women, are responding by waging something of a sit-down strike. They’re living with their parents at double the rate of their female peers. They’re dropping out of the labor pool in record numbers.

The result is effectively a reversal of a male-female power arrangement that has existed for virtually all of human history.

One of the most potent of the many causes behind this revolution is the advent of modern time wasters tailor-made to suck the life out of the male mind.

Today’s media have become a black hole for male ambition and responsibility. As Kay Hymowitz writes in her book Manning Up: How the Rise of Women Has Turned Men Into Boys, “Relatively affluent, free of family responsibilities, and entertained by an array of media devoted to his every pleasure, the single young man can live in pig heaven—and often does.” It’s a self-perpetuating cycle: A man with little motivation to become a productive member of society is more liable to devote his hours to senseless pursuits, which then renders him even less capable of ever making something of his life.

Two of the most toxic examples are video games and pornography. Their most voracious consumers are young men, and they are ravaging society’s manhood on an epic scale.

Video game addiction is about four times more common among boys than girls. The average American boy spends 13 hours a week absorbed in video games, compared to five hours for the average girl. Half of college students admit that video games preempt their studies “some” or “a lot.” By the time the average American youth reaches drinking age, he will have devoted 10,000 hours to gaming—enough time to have earned two bachelor’s degrees.

The valuable time and energy being swallowed up by these games is problem enough, but the ghoulish content many of them contain makes their effect far worse. Millions of young people are immersing themselves in realistic games that encourage them to become killers, sadists, mutilators and monsters that use every conceivable weapon for murder, torture, dismemberment, decapitation, impaling, ethnic cleansing and rape.

Pornography has become mainstream, pervasive, socially accepted, and, thanks to the Internet, devilishly easy to get. It is also intensely addictive. The demand is monstrous: Full-length commercial porn films are produced at 22½ times the volume of Hollywood films. The average high school boy watches porn two hours a week. Researchers conducting a study in July 2011 on porn and prostitution had so much difficulty finding non-users that they had to loosen their definition in order to muster up a hundred men for a control group.

“A brain originally designed to cope with nothing more tempting than an occasional glimpse of a tribesperson across the savannah is lost with what’s now on offer on the net at the click of a button,” wrote author Alain de Botton in the Wall Street Journal. “There is nothing robust enough in our psychological make-up to compensate for developments in our technological capacities.”

These perverted images and warped concepts filling men’s minds have devastating effects on men’s relationships and mental health. A Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study found that regular pornography users have higher rates of depression and even physical health problems than non-users. “The reason is that porn may start a cycle of isolation,” the report explained. “Porn may become a substitute for healthy face-to-face interactions, social or sexual.” Psychologists say video games also tend to desensitize a user to reality and to real-life interactions with people.

In their book The Demise of Guys: Why Boys Are Struggling and What We Can Do About It, psychologists Philip Zimbardo and Nikita Duncan contend that these poisonous media influences are actually rewiring men’s brains. “The excessive use of video games and online porn,” they write, “is creating a generation of risk-averse guys who are unable (and unwilling) to navigate the complexities and risks inherent to real-life relationships, school and employment.”

Think on that. These influences are crushing society’s manhood. One specific proof: Academics have uncovered a correlation between porn use and an increase in a man’s willingness to move back in with his parents. And today, nearly six in ten 18-to-24-year-old males live with their parents. Even among 25-to-34-year-olds, it’s still almost two in ten. These figures are almost double the rate among women the same age.

Risk-averse men who cannot handle life’s complexities are deeply disadvantaged if not crippled in ever being able to support a family.

It’s impossible to measure precisely, but this media assault has contributed significantly to handicap men in our world.

The frustrations so many people have over the weakness of men today all trace back to this powerful spiritual truth: Men are weak because of their sin. Self-indulgence, the sex perversion—these are sins. If a man succumbs to sin, he becomes weak. God removes His blessings and allows the devil to do his work.

These sins are causing the collapse of manly leadership and male responsibility. They are creating weakness, insecurity and selfishness. They are leading to the disappearance of manhood!

A man who wants to avoid this trap must devote his energies to swimming upstream against society. He must eschew the pastimes that weaken men. He must avoid the addictions that eat away at men’s minds, blacken their consciences and destroy their confidence. He must stoke the flames of ambition in his life. He must aim high, and equip himself to become an able leader. This is what he was created for. This is literally what he was born to do!