Australia’s Security Challenge

Australia’s Security Challenge

Jon Hanson

As Australia prepares for national elections, whichever party gains office must face the challenge of security and defense in an increasingly militarized Pacific region.

Australia is an island nation—the world’s largest island and its smallest continent.

The Australian coastline measures 59,736 kilometers.

That’s an awful lot of coastal border to patrol and keep secure from any predator nation, especially considering the national population is only 23 million spread across a continental area of almost 8 million square kilometers.

Due especially to its natural alliances with Britain and the United States, Australia has always fought above its weight when it comes to rallying the nation to either its own or allied defense. In this context we should also include Australia’s closest cousin, New Zealand.

As “European” nations, seemingly positioned out of context south of Asia’s vast expanse, Australia and New Zealand hold somewhat unique positions among their fellow Anglo-Saxon nations due to their land masses being sited immediately south of the largest conglomerate of humanity on the planet, traditionally known as “the Asian hordes.”

As a consequence of the rich possession of minerals—in particular iron ore, coal and bauxite—Australia has become a major supplier to Japan and China of the raw materials those nations need to drive their industrial economies.

Yet there is also one other attribute Australia possesses which the Asian nations to its north largely lack: space!—vast tracts of unoccupied land. However, much of that land is virtually uninhabitable due to lack of access to water.

Generations of Australians have known that the major problem this island continent—this land subject to “droughts and flooding rains”—faces, is not lack of water. It has been the failure to implement the technology to harness the flow of abundant waters that tumble into the sea each annual wet season, and that remain locked below earth’s surface in its great hinterland.

That failure restricts the populating of Australia largely to its coastal and river land peripheries. The inability to harness both free-flowing annual rainfall and tap into artesian water on a large scale is mostly due to the great logistical challenges faced by a largely desert land containing an insufficient labor force and possessing insufficient means to raise the huge capital requirements that such an undertaking demands. Australia’s chief customers for its raw materials have access to both.

Thus it is that when it comes to considering the nation’s defense, all these factors must be taken into consideration—a small population spread thinly, mainly around its eastern and southeastern coastal perimeters, massive natural industrial resources, and the nation’s dependence for its economic welfare on the custom of two major players in the Asian geopolitical arena.

Having all this in mind, Australia has been careful to maintain the best possible diplomatic relations with its Asian neighbors. Yet those very neighbors are only too well aware that it is the strength of the alliance between Australia and America—an alliance that has endured since World War ii—which alone stands between Australia’s security today, and the prospect of an avalanche of inundation by Asian hordes should that alliance ever fail.

Thus, Australia treads the precipice between the ongoing strength of the U.S. politically, economically and militarily and the prospect of the collapse of that strength which America increasingly faces each day its national debt escalates.

In the meantime, it suits the U.S. to use friendly Australia as a South Asian outpost to aid its present strategy of switching its defensive posture from concentration in the Northern Hemisphere to the Asian theater.

Stratfor observes: “Australia, due to its proximity to Southeast Asia and close alliance with the U.S., will form an important element of the growing strategic dynamic involving Indonesia, China and the U.S. These relationships are vital for the stability of the region. Australia is arguably the closest American ally there, sharing a common language, culture and political system. Australia, the U.S., Canada, Britain and New Zealand also control the most sophisticated global signals collection and analysis network, known as Five Eyes. Australia will host thousands of U.S. marines in Darwin, while American unmanned aerial vehicles (uavs) may operate from the Cocos Islands, one of the closest Australian territories to Indonesia and Southeast Asia” (July 30).

Given the dominance of China in this region, what Stratfor describes as this “strategy of close and lucrative economic ties with China and close defense and security ties with the U.S.” is fundamental to Australian geopolitics.

Yet Australia’s most recent “Defense White Paper 2013” categorizes its region of strategic interest as Indi-Pacific, having in mind the nation is bordered by not one but two great oceans—the Indian and Pacific. For Canberra, this is a new view of the scope of the Australian defensive perimeter.

Traditionally, Australia has been regarded as a Pacific power. To recognize that it must look both northeast to Asia and northwest toward India, represents a completely new perspective of Australia’s defense needs. The northwest quadrant of Australia’s geography is replete with industrial raw materials but very sparse in population. As the development of mineral resources and port facilities ratchet up that region’s growth, the need to heighten security in Australia’s northwest becomes most obvious.

Rory Medcalf, who directs the international security program at the Lowy Institute in Sydney, observes that the Defense White Paper is long on the diplomacy of security and defense, but, of necessity, rather short on establishing parameters for the strengthening of Australia’s military power. The reason for this is simple economics: “[I]t is hard to escape the suspicion that one reason diplomacy gets such a big run in a supposedly military document is that it is much cheaper than preparing for war. For the worst-kept secret of Australian defense policy is that the fiscal cupboard is pretty much bare. The Australian economy has done much better than most developed economies in the post-financial crisis era, but the government still faces a serious budget deficit and a long list of domestic spending priorities in an election year” (The Diplomat, May 7).

Continuing to stress the point, Medcalf observes, “This cut-price approach will make it increasingly hard for Australia to possess the cutting-edge forces it would need to contribute substantially to high-end contingencies alongside the United States in Asia. Moreover, highly constrained defense spending is at odds with the white paper’s expansive view of Australia’s national interests and military tasks—from stabilizing South Pacific nations to patrolling the Indo-Pacific commons and protecting the nation’s vast territories and offshore resources” (ibid).

Thus, with regard to Australia’s major security challenge, we are forced back to considering fundamentals—a huge largely unguarded coastline, small population, insufficient capital base and dependence on big brother America for support in times of threat by a potential enemy.

Thus, when push comes to shove, in reality Australia has very little bargaining power with either China/Japan—the major customers for its main salable resources—or with the U.S., its major strategic ally. Either can literally hold Australia to ransom in its own national interests.

This is a most invidious position for any nation to be in, least of all one as substantially indebted as Australia is to its international creditors.

Unfortunately, it has led in the past to Canberra, as Rory Medcalf points out, committing the unpardonable diplomatic sin: “Four years ago, the then Australian prime minister Kevin Rudd launched a defense white paper amid furious concern about China’s destabilizing rise. A much stronger Australian Defense Force was promised with new-generation submarines, cruise missiles, and joint strike fighters. … But a lack of credible budgeting undermined this vision of projected Australian firepower, and Canberra was caught committing the cardinal sin of statecraft: speaking loudly while carrying a small stick, the opposite of Teddy Roosevelt’s dictum” (ibid).

In the wake of budget cutbacks, Medcalf points out that Australia’s current spending on its defense and security amounts to just 1.56 percent of gross domestic product, its lowest level since the 1930s.

Yet this low expenditure on maintaining—let alone upgrading—the nation’s military capability comes at a time of increasing tension in Asia and rising defense budgets by a number of nations within Australia’s perceived Indo-Pacific theater of defense.

Simply put, while Australian governing elites may be big on vision, they simply lack the resources to meet their perceived defense obligations in their newly defined Indo-Pacific arena.

Bible prophecy speaks of Sinim, meaning “the great south land,” in direct relation to the prophecies for our day (Isaiah 49:12). Those prophecies speak of certain nations that will “blow the trumpet, even to make all ready; but none goeth to the battle” (Ezekiel 7:14).

That prophecy is preceded by a most powerful warning—a warning to the descendants of the patriarch Abraham from whom Anglo-Saxon Australians descend. Three times in Ezekiel 7 God warns of an imminent time He calls “the end.” This bespeaks the end of an age, actually the end of man’s efforts to govern himself. Inevitably those efforts have led, time and time again, to war!

The tensions building today in the Asian, Indo-Pacific arena are but a portent of the fulfillment of these prophecies. Australia is ill equipped to handle the coming clash that is emerging in its geopolitical region between the Asian masses to its north. More so, it is bereft as a nation of the moral and spiritual commitment to the God who has so substantially blessed that nation over the past almost 250 years. Thus Australia must suffer the fiery rebuke of God for its rebellion against Him, just as its fellow descendents from Abraham must.

But the good news is contained in that very same prophecy which names Australia, by its Hebrew term Sinim, in Isaiah 49. In that chapter, God speaks of a time, a “day of salvation” (verse 8), when the Anglo-Saxon nations and their affiliated brethren descended from Abraham, will become “a light unto the gentiles.”

What a great future is prophesied for Australia and New Zealand, its geographically closest brother nation! The descendents of those nations, those who remain after the great conflagration of “the end,” will be given the awesome responsibility to be a light of knowledge to the Gentile masses to their north!

You need to read our booklets The United States and Britain in Prophecy, Isaiah’s End-Time Vision and Ezekiel: The End-Time Prophet for a more complete vision of that which awaits Australasia in the immediate future and beyond.

That vision is far, far greater than any vision for a nation’s future put forward in any government white paper. It is an eternal vision, penned millennia ago, now approaching rapid fulfillment in our time, today!

Catch that vision and it will give you the faith, the courage and the confidence to face the future with a real, and very tangible—hope!

Iranian President Rowhani’s Extremist ‘Path of Moderation’

Iranian President Rowhani’s Extremist ‘Path of Moderation’

ATTA KENARE/AFP/Getty Images

Just how ‘moderate’ is Iran’s recently inaugurated president?

Apparently the “path of moderation” that the recently inaugurated Iranian president has vowed to tread is not an easy one. Iran’s PR department has been frantically pouring water over the fiery, anti-Zionist statements that the “moderate” Hasan Rowhani made on August 2 on Quds (Jerusalem) Day—a pro-Palestine, and by implication, anti-Israel annual event coinciding with the last Friday of Ramadan.

Rowhani was quoted by Iran’s local media two days before his inauguration as saying, “The Zionist regime is a wound inflicted for years on the body of the Muslim world that must be cleansed.” Rowhani’s incendiary remarks sounded eerily similar to outgoing President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s unabashed, wolf-in-wolf’s-clothing, anti-Semitic rants.

Rowhani is not the “moderate” that some of the Western media still thinks he is. He maintains an Islamist extremist ideology, and his comments imply that fact. But even if he was a reformist or a “moderate,” his boss definitely is not. Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei declared last year that “the Zionist regime is a real cancerous tumor that should be cut and will be cut.” Months later, he reaffirmed that Israel was a “cancerous tumor in the heart of the Islamic world.”

Rowhani’s outspoken predecessor Ahmadinejad was notorious for similarly inflammatory hate statements. Even on the same Quds Day that Rowhani was supposedly grossly misquoted, Ahmadinejad said in his last speech of his term earlier in the day: “I will inform you with God as my witness, a devastating storm is on the way that will uproot the basis of Zionism.” He also declared: “You Zionists planted a wind but you will harvest a storm. A destructive storm is on the way and it will destroy Zionism.” These are the words of the man whom Rowhani succeeded, whom Khamenei just appointed to his advisory board on August 5, acknowledging the “profuse experience [he] gained during eight years of worthy efforts.”

There’s no mistaking the path that Iran wants to walk. It is extremist, not moderate. Iran will use Rowhani’s “moderate” outlook to buy time, gain legitimacy, and hopefully ease the hurting economic sanctions it’s under. Tragically, the West is falling for it. British Prime Minister David Cameron sent a letter to Rowhani on August 7 expressing high hopes that the “moderate” Iranian president will engage with the international community “constructively and seriously” over Iran’s disputed nuclear activities.

In the United States, while Congress is pushing for tougher sanctions on Iran, the State Department is arguing that those sanctions would create immovable obstacles to pragmatic nuclear negotiations with Iran.

The Islamic Republic of Iran remains the dangerous state it has always been, if not worse under Rowhani’s presidency. Bible prophecy indicates a time soon when Iran will shed its current “moderate” mask and reveal its true nature in a violent manner. That prophecy, howbeit ominous, is a glorious sign of the imminence of the Second Coming of Jesus Christ to establish a peaceful regime—the Kingdom of God. To learn more about the hope behind the electrifying events in the Middle East today, request our free booklets The King of the South and Jerusalem in Prophecy.

Will the Federal Government Be the Next Detroit?

Will the Federal Government Be the Next Detroit?

Albert Duce

How broken promises are bringing down the U.S.

While economists were shocked to see Detroit file for bankruptcy, many are now scared that it has set off a chain reaction throughout the nation. At $18 billion, and probably more, Detroit is the largest municipal bankruptcy case in the history of America. While it was not the first city in the U.S. to file for bankruptcy, it is by far the largest. And chances are it won’t be the last.

The financial issue currently plaguing the nation is unfunded liabilities such as pension commitments. This was at the heart of why Detroit filed for bankruptcy. According to Kevin Orr, Detroit’s emergency manager, the city was about $3.5 billion short of what it needed to pay its current and future retirees.

From sea to shining sea, governments at the local, state and federal level are failing to come up with the money promised to their employees at retirement. In Los Angeles, total unfunded liabilities could equal as much as $30 billion. On the other side of the nation, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg warned on Tuesday that New York City could travel the same path as Detroit if the next mayor doesn’t work to curtail rising pension costs.

By not properly saving or budgeting for these liabilities, major cities across the U.S. are now facing a host of consequences. One of the more immediate consequences is a downgrade of their credit rating. On July 17, Moody’s Investors Service dropped Chicago’s rating three levels. That brought the city’s credit rating to the lowest it’s been in 26 years and only four steps above “junk.” A downgrade to a city’s credit rating means that it is a bigger investment risk, so less people are likely to lend it money. It also makes it more expensive for the city to borrow money.

This problem extends all the way up to the federal level. But in the Federal Reserve’s case, it isn’t a shortfall of just $18 billion like Detroit faces. A new study done by University of California-San Diego economics professor James Hamilton found that the United States has over $70 trillion worth of unfunded liabilities. This includes pension commitments as well as obligations toward Medicare and Social Security. But even that astronomically huge number may be optimistic. Laurence Kotlikoff, an economics professor at Boston University, estimates that America’s unfunded liabilities could be as high as $211 trillion.

The problem with calculating unfunded liabilities is that they are based on estimates such as stock and bond market returns, life expectancy and health-care cost inflation, hence the huge differences in estimations. Therefore it is always difficult to get an accurate figure for America’s unfunded liabilities. But as Hamilton wrote in his study, “[O]ne thing seems undeniable—they are huge.”

Regardless of what the exact number is, the federal government has nowhere near the money it needs to pay up—the government is already nearly $16.7 trillion in debt. As more and more baby boomers begin to collect their benefits, the federal government will be forced to either print off more money or go deeper into debt to cover the promises it made. “We’ve got 78 million baby boomers who are poised to collect, in about 15 to 20 years, about $40,000 per person. Multiply 78 million by $40,000—you’re talking about more than $3 trillion a year just to give to a portion of the population,” Kotlikoff says. “That’s an enormous bill that’s overhanging our heads, and Congress isn’t focused on it.”

No matter how you look at it, America is broke—it just hasn’t admitted it yet. And when it can no longer pay its bills, the country will be plunged into economic and social collapse. That is what your Bible prophesies will happen. Things will get so bad that people will “cast their silver in the streets, and their gold shall be removed: their silver and their gold shall not be able to deliver” (Ezekiel 7:19).

God prophesies that dangerous times are ahead. But there is good news as well. It all leads to the Second Coming of Jesus Christ to this Earth. Finally mankind will be taught the laws that lead to financial success so that no one need file for bankruptcy ever again. To learn about the most important law of financial success, read The Financial Law You Can’t Afford to Ignore.

The Fiction of Japan’s Self-Defense Force

The Fiction of Japan’s Self-Defense Force

U.S. Navy photo by Photographer’s Mate 2nd Class John L. Beeman

Japanese elites have always regarded the nation’s ‘self-defense force’ as having the potential to act in an offensive role when the need arises.

Raised in 1954, Japan’s so-called “self-defense force” comprises a fully integrated, ultra-modern assemblage of land, sea and air components that rival those of any other world power in the quality and efficiency of its organization and the ability to project its power far beyond the home nation’s shores.

Aided and abetted by the United States, the creation of Japan’s Self-Defense Force (sdf) was in direct contravention of the Japanese postwar constitution, which clearly stated that “land, sea, and air forces, as well as other war potential, will never be maintained.”

Having noted that, it should be further noted that no formal treaty or agreement exists between Japan, the U.S. or the UN which binds the nation to official reliance on either, nor on any other entity, for its security and defense. Thus it is that Japan has quietly built up a military force to potentially rival that of most world powers, in reality to protect its present national, and future imperial, interests.

Similar to Germany—a nation whose defense budget is roughly equivalent to that of Japan—till recent times Japanese elites have been careful to stress the self-defense role of its significant military force. Much publicity is given to its humanitarian and peacekeeping support roles.

As we have previously highlighted, that attitude is rapidly changing under current Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

Just as the Balkan Wars were used by German elites to reintroduce a German offensive military force to the global public, Japan is using two perceived threats to its security as catalysts to changing the view of politicians and the public to support more offensive deployment of its sdf.

Geopolitically, the most immediate threat to Japan comes at present from China’s increasing economic and military strength added to continuing friction between Taiwan and China and between North and South Korea.

Another major concern is the protection of vital sea lanes between the Middle East and Japan. With Japan receiving 90 percent of its oil through the Persian Gulf from the Middle East, the maintenance of reasonable stability in the region—especially the security of shipping lanes in the Persian Gulf, Arabian Sea, India Ocean and Straits of Malacca—is vital to Japan’s ongoing security and economic development.

The true scope of the Japanese elite’s support of the nation’s military efforts is substantially revealed in the following assessment of its military expenditure: “Japan’s defense budget is still estimated to be one of the five or six largest in the world. In 2006, Japan had a $45 billion defense budget, the fourth-largest in the world, and ironic for a country that officially doesn’t have a military. In 2002, Japan spent $42.6 billion on defense, more than France, Russia and China. Only the United States spent more” (Facts and Details, Jeffrey Hays, January 2013).

The real fiction in relation to Japanese defense is that its considerable military might is viewed by Japanese leadership as being purely for self-defense purposes. The reality is that the sheer strength of current Japanese military power—let alone its potential for rapid growth—belies the intent of Article 9 of its constitution, the clause that ostensibly restricts Japan to mounting a force of a nature sufficient for the self-defense of its immediate geographic arena.

It also begs the question as to why Japan would seek to become a nuclear power. As the Christian Science Monitor observed, “With the technical means to build advanced nuclear weapons within six months, what remains is the political judgment of the ruling elite of Japan first to assess its strategic imperatives and then the political consequences of going nuclear” (April 25, 2005).

Under Prime Minister Abe, it appears that the “political judgment of the ruling elite” in Japan is to enable Japan to become a nuclear-armed military power of some consequence.

As Global Research reported on May 7, “A nuclear-armed Japan would dramatically alter relations in Asia, as it would be less dependent on the U.S. militarily and more able to independently prosecute its economic and strategic interests.”

But the real fiction here is that Japan is being forced into a more aggressive defensive stance by pressure from the U.S. That is simply not the case.

The plain fact is that, under the cloak of Article 9 of its constitution, Japan—entirely of its own initiative and in its own national interest—has built one of the most powerful military forces in the world, a force with the capability of power projection far beyond the realm of self-defense.

How soon will the world wake up to the fiction that a pacifist Japan continues to be content with a military role of purely self-defense?

Bible prophecy—regardless of present international relations around the South China Sea—declares that Japan will soon join with China and Russia to form the greatest military combine ever in history. In fact, the formation of that massed international force is a great harbinger to the mightiest of all battles, prophesied to assemble in battle on the great plain of Megiddo (Revelation 16:12, 16; 9:16).

The good news is that this “mother of all battles” immediately precedes the establishment of the Kingdom of God on Earth—a millennial rule by Christ and the saints which brings peace, prosperity and joy to the whole world!

These prophecies are explained in our booklets Russia and China in Prophecy, Daniel Unlocks Revelation and The Wonderful World Tomorrow—What It Will Be Like. These booklets explain the prophecies regarding the great military combine of the “kings of the East” revealed in Ezekiel 38:1-6 and what their rise to power portends for the immediate future, on to the most fantastic future of Jesus Christ’s coming rule on Earth.

They are vital to understanding the present rapidly developing final world order immediately preceding Jesus Christ’s return—a world order that will negatively impact the U.S., Britain and its dominions very powerfully, before the Creator’s intervention to bring those nations relief.

Prophecy declares this emerging world order will comprise three competing powers—an Islamist combine, a European empire, and an assemblage of Far Eastern nations. The coming clash between these world powers will be the catalyst for Armageddon, the war that will finally end all wars on Earth for 1,000 years.

Continue to watch Japan as the kings of the East arise as a most potent sign of your Savior’s imminent return to this Earth to set up a world order at a level of perfection never yet experienced in the whole history of man.

Only then shall all nations truly learn to live in peace (Isaiah 9:6-7).

The Democracy Delusion

The Democracy Delusion

ADEM ALTAN/AFP/Getty Images

Will democracy really bring freedom to the Middle East?

As the world’s most powerful nation, the United States has become involved in dozens of conflicts around the world. Often these conflicts were sold to the public as an effort to not only protect American interests, but to bring freedom to the oppressed. Toward this cause, America has sought to impose democracy throughout the world.

But is democracy the solution to the world’s problems?

When America invaded Afghanistan in 2001, it was initially motivated by the fact that the country’s dictators were harboring terrorists that attacked America. After those dictators were removed, America’s involvement became more of a humanitarian, nation-building effort. Millions of dollars were put toward developing the nation, and a democratically elected leader was installed.

Then there was the war in Iraq. The U.S., along with several allies, invaded in 2003, toppling the autocratic regime of Saddam Hussein. Afterward, these forces helped Iraq establish a democratic government.

This was one of the great victories that U.S. President Barack Obama saw in Iraq. In a speech marking the end of the Iraq War, President Obama said, “[W]e’re leaving behind a sovereign, stable and self-reliant Iraq, with a representative government that was elected by its people,” and that “American troops [had broken] the back of a brutal dictator ….” Democracy was the victor in Iraq, according to the president.

But it didn’t stop there. When America put pressure on Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak to resign in early 2011, it was done in the name of democracy (recall the president’s “We hear your voices” speech to the youth of Egypt). This was done despite the fact that Mubarak was a long-time friend of America and had maintained peace with Israel for nearly 30 years. Later that same year, the U.S. backed a nato mission to assist in the overthrow of Libyan dictator Muammar Qadhafi. This too was done in support of what the Obama administration viewed as pro-democracy protests in Libya. Even in Syria, the U.S. has voiced its support for the rebels who are working to topple Syrian President Bashar Assad.

Time after time, America has worked to install democracy or has supported in a variety of ways those who appear to be pro-democracy. But what has been the outcome of democracy in the Middle East? Has it brought peace and stability as it supposedly did to America and the West? It certainly doesn’t look like it.

Last month proved to be the deadliest month in Iraq in the past five years, with more than 1,000 Iraqi civilians killed. As Reuters reports, “Most of the violence has been perpetrated by the Iraqi wing of al Qaeda, the strict Sunni Muslim jihadi group which was defeated by U.S. forces and their allies in 2006-2007 but has been reborn this year to battle the Shiite-led government.” The violence in Iraq has become so bad that the Interior Ministry announced last week that, once again, Iraq was in “open war.”

The same thing is happening in Afghanistan. On Tuesday, the Taliban’s leader, Mullah Mohammed Omar, called on Afghans to not participate in next year’s presidential elections, calling them “a waste of time.” With the U.S. pulling out next year, many question whether the Afghan Army will be able to protect the gains made by coalition troops over the past decade. The country could easily break into civil war.

In Egypt, 250 people have been killed since the start of July when a new wave of unrest led to the military ousting Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi and taking control of the country. American diplomats are currently working to have the military government turn control of the country back over to the Muslim Brotherhood because Morsi was the elected leader. It doesn’t seem to matter that the Brotherhood is a terrorist group; the Obama administration doesn’t want to see a democratically elected official ousted, even if he is a radical.

The crisis in Syria isn’t shaping up to be a victory for democracy either. Right now, more and more extremists are entering the ranks of the rebels in Syria, putting the U.S. in a difficult position regarding whom it should support. It can’t support Assad, because it views him as a dictator. But, should the rebels win, it seems unlikely that a responsible democratic government would be established.

Democracy clearly is not working so well in the Middle East. It has not brought peace and stability to the region. In fact, it has destabilized it even more! If it was democracy that brought peace and stability to America, why hasn’t it done the same in these other nations as well?

The truth is that democracy is not the primary cause for American greatness.

What, then, made America great? What brought it freedom and stability? It came because God was fulfilling His promise of material wealth to Abraham, who is the ancient patriarch of the nation of America. You can learn more about this in The United States and Britain in Prophecy. Keeping those God-given blessings was conditional on keeping God’s law. When America’s forefathers created the Constitution, they tried to pattern it after the Ten Commandments. As editor in chief Gerald Flurry wrote in No Freedom Without Law:

The Constitution is the foundation of our republic. And the Ten Commandments were, in many ways, the foundation of the Constitution. Our forefathers believed that if we didn’t keep God’s Ten Commandments, our republic would collapse!

The recognition of the Ten Commandments by the Founding Fathers was noble in its intent. The trouble is, Americans, as with the great body of humanity, never did have the capacity to fully obey them.

To the extent that Americans either wittingly or unwittingly obeyed God’s law, they were either individually blessed or cursed. However, the fact remains that it was only through God fulfilling His promise to the patriarch Abraham, after withholding it for 2,520 years, that America once reaped the benefits of so many national blessings.

Yet now America is turning its back on the very principles within its Constitution that helped keep America great in human terms. This can only have disastrous results.

Abraham Lincoln declared:

We have been the recipients of the choicest bounties of heaven. We have been preserved, these many years, in peace and prosperity. We have grown in numbers, wealth and power, as no other nation has ever grown. But we have forgotten God … we have become too self-sufficient to feel the necessity of redeeming and preserving grace, too proud to pray to the God that made us!

As America continues to turn its back on God, the blessings will continue to be removed, just as He prophesied in Deuteronomy 28.

Imposing democracy on the world will not solve America’s problems. It will take a far, far superior form of government to do that—the very government of the God America rejects!

The signs are that government will soon bring peace to the whole world (Matthew 24:3). Those prophetic signs, now extant in timely abundance, reveal that Jesus Christ will soon return to this Earth (John 14:3). As prophesied, He will bring universal peace and prosperity as He administers and enforces God’s law—the Ten Commandments—through the loving government of God (1 John 5:3). Only then will man experience the peace he has so fruitlessly tried to attain by his own means.

To learn how you can experience that peace and freedom in your life today by submitting to God’s government now, be sure to read No Freedom Without Law.

Spain Ramps Up Pressure on Gibraltar

Spain Ramps Up Pressure on Gibraltar

MARCOS MORENO/AFP/Getty Images

The UK and U.S. have surrendered many strategic sea gates in recent decades. Will another one soon bite the dust?

Before World War ii, Britain and the United States controlled all of the world’s major sea gates: Hong Kong, Suez, Panama, Falklands, Cape of Good Hope, Malta, Papua New Guinea, Timor, West Indies, Cyprus, Gulf of Guinea, Sri Lanka, Singapore and others, including Gibraltar—the western doorway to the Mediterranean Sea.

Possession of these strategic passageways was vital to the victory of the Allied powers in World War ii. Yet, both London and Washington have surrendered control of almost all of them since the war ended. The Suez and Panama canals, Hong Kong, Singapore, Cyprus, Malta, Good Hope and others have been given over to other powers. Now, Spain is increasing pressure to push Britain into giving up Gibraltar.

These modern-day trends are deeply significant because they were foretold thousands of years ago in prophecies of the Holy Bible. And the ancient prophecies were explained years before the U.S. and Britain lost the sea gates.

The Struggle for the Rock

The 1713 Treaty of Utrecht said Great Britain’s control over Gibraltar was official and permanent. But Spain has continued to claim sovereignty over it since then, so Britain has had to fight several times against Madrid’s efforts to reclaim the Rock.

In the 1780s, the British fought off a Spanish-French military invasion force. In the 1950s, Britain defended against a political drive by dictator Francisco Franco to wrest the Rock from the UK. In 2009, British warships had to force an armed Spanish ship to retreat from waters around Gibraltar after Spain illegally sent boarding parties to inspect British fishing vessels.

Which nation do the people and leaders of Gibraltar prefer alignment with? The Union Jack flutters everywhere on the territory. Fish and chips shops and pubs are ubiquitous. And every time the people—now numbering around 30,000—are asked about the matter, they vote overwhelmingly to remain under British sovereignty.

But Spanish claims grow louder as British will becomes weaker.

In 2002, for example, British Prime Minister Tony Blair tried to hand Gibraltar over to Spain because it was an “obstacle” to the UK’s relationship with the European Union, but the secret deal ultimately failed. In April of 2011, reports emerged saying the Spanish government is pushing to allow only Spain and Britain to discuss the sovereignty of the Rock instead of including Gibraltarian authorities in three-way talks. This formula would allow Madrid to capitalize much more on British weakness.

Spain’s latest efforts to take Gibraltar back began in late July when Gibraltar boats started dumping concrete blocks into the sea just off the territory’s shores. The purpose was to create an artificial reef intended to boost fish stocks, which Gibraltar says have been reduced because of illegal incursions by Spanish fishermen.

Spanish Foreign Minister Jose Garcia-Margallo said this artificial reef is “unacceptable” because it will draw fish away from Spanish waters, and said its creation means it’s time for Spain to make Gibraltar squirm. “The party is over,” he said, and unveiled proposals to close Spanish airspace to flights to or from Gibraltar, to impose a $65 border fee to anyone entering or leaving Gibraltar, and to investigate the affairs of Gibraltarians with Spanish economic ties.

Over the weekend, Spanish customs officials conducted rigorous checks at the border, which caused huge traffic jams and left hundreds of Gibraltarians in the heat of the day for extended durations. “[I]t isn’t nice being stuck there for hours in [90 degree] heat,” said Roy Walker, 63, owner of Roy’s Cod Place restaurant. “The worst thing is that you know full well it’s deliberate. It’s just another in a long line of Spaniards trying to be the first to crack the nut and make inroads into the sovereignty of Gibraltar.”

Gibraltar’s chief minister, Fabian Picardo, said, “The things Mr. Garcia-Margallo has said are more reminiscent of a statement you’d hear from North Korea than from a European Union partner.”

And what does Great Britain think of this North-Korea-style sabre rattling? A spokesman for Prime Minister David Cameron said the UK is “seriously concerned” about Spain’s belligerence. On Wednesday Mr. Cameron telephoned his Spanish counterpart Mariano Rajoy to complain. Rajoy said he would like to deescalate the issue, but also said the border controls are “allowable” under EU law, which implies that the tensions may remain high.

If History Is an Indication …

The fact that the U.S. and UK came to control all of the world’s vital “gates,” as the Bible calls them, is among the many powerful proofs of the modern-day identities of the biblical nations Ephraim and Manasseh (Genesis 22:17; 24:60). The fact that Britain and America are systematically losing these strategic passageways makes the proof irrefutable (Deuteronomy 28:52).

World educator Herbert W. Armstrong was well versed in these scriptures. Since he understood the Bible prophecies about both the rise and fall of the United Kingdom and the United States, he was able to accurately predict the loss of several vital sea gates. Here are some excerpts from Mr. Armstrong’s Plain Truth magazine (the forerunner of the Trumpet):

  • “America, before this is all over, is going to lose the Panama Canal” (March 1964).
  • “The British are giving the Suez back to Egypt!” (October 1954).
  • “Britain … seems destined to lose Cyprus and Singapore, and her hold on South Africa” (February 1956).
  • Each statement was a bold prediction firmly forecasting the loss of a strategic sea gate well in advance of the actual forfeiture. Because Mr. Armstrong used the Bible as his guide to understand geopolitics, he was able to accurately predict such landmark events with precision.

    At present, Gibraltar remains firmly British. But, despite the wishes of the people of Gibraltar, the UK’s will to hold on to the rock is waning, as demonstrated by Mr. Blair’s efforts back in 2002. Meanwhile, Spain, backed by the European Union, is becoming more assertive and more belligerent. The current tensions may subside, but in light of current trends and the current geopolitical climate, it is unlikely that Gibraltar will remain British too much longer.

    To understand how Mr. Armstrong was able to predict this and many other watershed trends and events with such startling accuracy, request a free copy of our booklet He Was Right.