Will the Terrorist Attacks Waken the Bavarian Lion?


Will the Terrorist Attacks Waken the Bavarian Lion?

Striking Bavaria means striking the Catholic heart of a sleeping lion.

A wave of terrorism has rolled into the state of Bavaria and left its citizens breathless. First came an ax attack on a train in Würzburg on July 18, which was the first successful Islamic attack in Germany. Four days later, nine people were shot by an 18-year-old Iranian-German in Bavaria’s capital, Munich. This was initially labeled as a terrorist attack but later called a shooting. On July 24, Bavarians became enraged after the first-ever suicide bomber in Germany detonated himself in Ansbach, injuring 15. Bavaria’s neighbor state, Baden-Württemberg, was hit by another attack on the same day, when a pregnant woman was killed with a machete. Now, Germany’s most Catholic and most conservative state is confronted and surrounded with the most brutal form of radical Islam. But a look at history shows that it is violent radical Islamists who should be afraid of waking a lion.

Bavaria is the economic powerhouse of Germany. It has one of the country’s best educational institutions and is home to some of its finest culture. Yet the theme of its current news is the horrific specter of terrorism. In 2015, the year of the refugee crisis, Bavaria was the safest state in Germany, having had only 4,687 crimes per 100,000 inhabitants—far below the national average. Although the terrorist attacks do not alter these statistics much, fear is rising in Bavaria.

On July 26, Islamists brutally murdered a French priest in Saint-Étienne-du-Rouvray. This attack showed that Islamic terrorism does not necessarily try to find the easiest target or kill the most people. Its overall aim is to provoke the greatest wrath. Islam expert Guido Steinberg told German newsmagazine Spiegel about “the perfidious strategy of jihadists” (Trumpet translation throughout):

The strategy of the Islamic State aims at stirring up conflicts between the majority of society and the Muslims. This attack hit a church because the Islamic State knows that attacks on Christian targets and Christian dignitaries cause an especially strong reaction among the French and other Europeans.

The terrorist attack in France aimed at provoking Catholicism to strike terror in Europe. Radical Islamists want to provoke Europe because they want to start a war that they believe will hasten the return of their messiah.

In striking Bavaria, Islamists could not have hit a better target to reach that goal. Bavaria is the most conservative, most religious and most powerful state in Germany. Striking Würzburg and Ansbach provokes not only Bavaria but Germany as a whole—and, beyond that, Europe.

The Heart of the Heart of Europe

Bavaria is the heart of Germany, and Germany is the heart of Europe. When you understand Germany’s role in Europe it is not too difficult to understand Bavaria’s role in Germany.

Bavaria is one of the richest states in Germany, just as Germany is the richest country in Europe. Germany complains that it has to carry the burden of other European Union nations, while Bavaria complains about the burden of other regions. Germany wants to influence and dominate politics in Europe; Bavaria does the same inside Germany. In Europe, Germany is often accused of having obscure weapons exports—Bavaria can be blamed for these. Germany is the Vatican’s strongest tool in Europe; Bavaria is the even stronger tool inside Germany. Both Germany and Bavaria remark that they would be better off alone, yet both know that they need to be part of the larger whole. Bavaria truly is to Germany what Germany is to Europe.

Bavaria is also the only state where the Christian Democratic Union (cdu) is not represented. Instead, its sister party, the Christian Social Union (csu), has ruled undefeated since the 1950s. Although the two are very similar, the csu is more conservative regarding social issues and has a stronger connection to the Vatican. Former Bavarian State Premier Franz Josef Strauss said, “Bavaria is my home, Germany my fatherland and Europe my future.” Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry wrote the following about Strauss: “Strauss is a giant in German postwar history. His remarkable political career spanned nearly four decades from the 1950s until his death in 1988. He was literally known in the press as ‘the strongman of Europe’—not just Germany.”

He also was a strong Catholic, like many Bavarians, and a close friend of Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, who later became Pope Benedict xvi. Thus, he saw Bavaria as the bridge between Germany and the Vatican, stating: “For us, the church is in Munich and not in Berlin.”

Benedict is also from Bavaria. He believes his home state is a core part of Europe’s future. “Bavaria unites a heritage of generosity and a rich religious harmony,” he said, “elements which hold real promise for a future made in man’s measure.” Contrary to the current pope, Benedict does not see Islam as a peaceful religion. While in power, he worked to strengthen Europe’s opposition against Islam.

Islam’s strike at Bavaria not only hit the heart of Germany, it hit the heart of German Catholicism. It is nearly impossible to drive through a Bavarian landscape and not notice the countless symbols of its Catholic faith. Many Bavarians credit their state’s success, safety and prominence to that faith. Simply put, if you want to provoke Europe and the Vatican, provoke Germany. If you want to provoke Germany, provoke Bavaria.

At the time of Strauss and Benedict, the German people where not ready for such lion-like leadership. But the mood in Germany has changed. And a provoked Bavaria has shown itself capable of shaping the course of Europe’s future.

Bavaria and the Holy Roman Empire

In a.d. 788, Charlemagne added Bavaria to the Frankish Kingdom. With the addition of Saxony, this laid the foundation for the Holy Roman Empire and for a modern united Europe. The Frankish Empire not only strengthened Christianity in Bavaria but also laid the foundation for the culture we see today. But Charlemagne’s means of spreading Catholicism and culture was anything but peaceful. He saw it as his mission to force Catholicism on his empire, with bloody consequences for the unbelievers. Bavaria embraced this radicalism. (For more information on Charlemagne’s conquests, read our free book The Holy Roman Empire in Prophecy.)

The following centuries in Europe were dominated by crusades and religious wars, including many confrontations with Islam. Bavaria contributed not only various dukes and kings through the Wittelsbach dynasty but also three emperors of the Holy Roman Empire. Moreover, half of all German popes had Bavarian origins. During the reign of Bavarian Pope Victor ii (1055–1057), the church found, for the first time, the courage to stand up against the emperors who departed from their Catholics roots. This gave the Vatican a renewed, stronger political influence in the empire.

Besides these famous Bavarian leaders, one more Bavarian duke stands out in the history of the Holy Roman Empire: Maximilian i, the most powerful ruler of the Wittelsbach dynasty. In 1609, he formed the Catholic League, a military alliance that untied the Catholic powers of Germany for the purpose of violently stopping the spread of Protestantism. The Catholic League, allied with the Habsburg dynasty, played a major part in the Thirty Years’ War, which was fought mostly on German ground and reduced Germany’s population by 20 percent. But like Charlemagne, Maximilian i was willing to spill enormous amounts of blood to ensure the survival of Catholicism. His efforts also paid off after his reign, as the Bavarian electorate gained an important role in the empire.

Despite the fact that Charlemagne is known for leading Europe into the Dark Ages, he is still seen as the role model for European unification today. Every year, a Charlemagne Prize is given to the person who contributes the most to European unity. In May, this prize was awarded to Pope Francis.

Bavaria’s History Under Hitler

Just as the early-20th-century European began to believe that the horrific and cruel times under the Holy Roman Empire were a thing of the past, World War i shocked the world. Of all nations, the one full of poets and philosophers ignited a world war of unprecedented carnage. This reinforced to many at the time a truth that was proved under Charlemagne: A nation with a high cultural standard does not necessarily shy away from war.

The German kaiser’s armies were defeated in World War i. Yet just a couple of decades later, another world war broke out—ignited once again by Germany. Again, Bavaria embraced radicalism.

Adolf Hitler’s Nationalist Socialist movement rose to popularity in Munich. It spread throughout the Bavarian beer halls. It was in Munich that Hitler first attempted to gain power in the so-called Beer Hall Putsch. Although his 1923 attempt failed and he was lightly punished, he later succeeded in establishing Bavaria as the capital of Nazism. Bavaria embraced the new radical leadership and allowed the building of the first concentration camp near its capital city.

Hitler, familiar with Bavaria’s role in the Holy Roman Empire, brought the imperial crown from Vienna to Nuremberg, a Bavarian city, where he wanted it to reside forever. Even though Hitler is known as a cruel and brutal dictator, one of his central beliefs was that Germany needed to spread its culture around the world, even if it required massive, Charlemagne-style bloodshed.

Today, we see another man stirring up the Bavarian spirit at a time of crisis. Once again, it is starting from the Bavarian beer halls.

“I spoke in innumerable beer tents,” Edmund Stoiber, former Bavarian state premier and now honorary chairman of the csu, said at the Bayerischer Hof. “In the front rows there are always the [political] party people, those interested in politics. But in the beer tents, you find those who would otherwise never come to us standing in the back.” In these tents, Stoiber agitates the Bavarian people against the current government in Berlin.

Stoiber is also strongly committed to preserving and spreading a dominant culture of the Western Christian civilization. The latest refugee crisis gives him no rest, and he is becoming one of the most demanded politicians on German talk shows. Like Charlemagne, he adamantly opposes Europe adapting to Muslim customs. Muslims in Germany should “adapt to our customs and legal rules, and not vice versa,” he said. That’s why he strongly opposes the policy of Chancellor Angela Merkel, who said, “Islam belongs to Germany.”

Bavaria’s radical history shows that it is the right target if you want to provoke a war. The old Bavarian spirit is rising again.

How Will Bavaria React?

Another reason why Germany is under attack, according to some, is because of its many weapon exports to the Middle East. Of all German states, Bavaria heads these exports. The Münchner Merkur reported that as many as 55 percent of all the weapons exports in Germany came from Bavaria in 2015. Ninety percent of these exports do not go to European or nato members, but to Iraq, Qatar and Kuwait. German weapons are contributing to the conflicts in the Middle East. While Islamic attacks come to Europe, Germany is ready to fight Islam in its hometowns. Radical Islam may not fully realize what beast it is poking.

Although Bavaria is the main driving force of Germany’s economy, finances, culture and beliefs, Chancellor Merkel rebuffed Bavarian State Premier Horst Seehofer when he demanded that the refugee crisis be handled differently. Once it was rather humorous to watch the dispute between Munich and Berlin, but now blood has been spilled. Bavaria is hurt and history could take a serious turn.

Even Seehofer has been criticized for his timidity by political leaders and the media. Bavaria’s state emblem is the Bavarian lion. But Seehofer and Merkel are the opposite of this aggressive creature.

The terrorist attacks have changed everything dramatically in Bavaria. The people demand action—if not from Berlin, then at least from Munich. Centuries ago, Bavaria took the lion, which represents boldness, as its emblem. Lately, Bavaria has lost this boldness. But former leaders from the csu were not afraid to strongly criticize the chancellery. This political party, supported by the Vatican, has produced strong leaders like Franz Josef Strauss, Edmund Stoiber and Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg. Bavarian leaders and Catholics have always shaped the course of Germany’s actions.

The Bavarian people are provoked and seeking leadership with the same mentality, which is part of the reason why Stoiber has received so much publicity recently. To describe the current mood in Bavaria, the Süddeutsche Zeitung quoted an angry Bavarian citizen saying: “I would kick them all out. Muslims don’t fit to us, and we not to them.” And another: “More will happen, yet we can do it [referring to Merkel’s slogan]. Our government is harming our country.” While Berlin still holds to the chancellor’s Muslims-welcome approach, the Bavarian government has started to respond. The next few months will show that a roaring lion is awakening in Bavaria.

Wolfram Weimer, former editor in chief of Die Welt,compared the two approaches to the recent terror attacks by the federal interior minister and the Bavarian interior minister for N-tv.

[Bavarian Interior Minister Joachim] Herrmann emerges consistently in the role of the police, the admonisher and the protector. [Federal Interior Minister Thomas] de Maizière poses as commissioner for integration, the pacifier and reconciler. The Bavarian speaks straight talk on the security crisis in the country, and expresses uncomfortable truths about the connection between the refugee influx and terrorism. The one in Berlin urges permanently against “suspicion” and “hasty conclusions.” One calls for “protection”; the other for a “sound mind.” The Bavarian wants to protect the borders and tighten the asylum rules; the other appeals to better integration.

Despite opposition, Bavaria is taking radical action: Each year, police officer posts will be increased by 500, adding 2,000 new officers by 2020; 270 additional judicial staff will be added; and high-tech equipment implemented. Herrmann calls this a “weighty, phenomenal program.”

The Bavarian interior minister has already risen in popularity for these actions, despite the fact that the ministry in Berlin has blocked his efforts. On July 29, Bavaria’s request for a change in the Basic Law to enable a Bundeswehr mission in the interior was denied by spd politicians in the federal ministry.

But after the terrorist attacks, the calls are growing louder and louder. Bavaria will soon take another strong role in shaping German politics. When that happens, the refugee crisis will be handled completely differently.

Bible prophecy says that, motivated by the Vatican, Germany will go to war against Islamic terrorism and destroy it like a whirlwind. It will regard it as its duty to spread Catholicism, with bloody consequences for the world. Stoiber is currently leading the way, but he is too old to finish the job. Watch for another Bavarian strongman to follow in his footsteps.

The biblical book of Nahum compares the end-time Chaldeans (modern Germany) to merciless lions (request our free booklet Nahum: An End-Time Prophecy for Germany). But God Himself will put an end to both Islamic and German warmongering. After that, the Holy Roman Empire will never rise again—Bavaria and the rest of Germany will live in peace with the world. To learn more about Germany’s quest to spread Christianity, read The Holy Roman Empire in Prophecy. For more about Germany’s response to Islamic provocations, read “The Whirlwind Prophecy” by Gerald Flurry. ▪