Is the European Family Breaking Apart?

Is the European Family Breaking Apart?

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With the euro crisis, the Russian threat, the refugee crisis and Brexit, many leading European politicians are expressing doubt in the continuity of the EU. Did the dream of the United States of Europe fail?

A United States of Europe has been the dream of many political greats of the post-World War ii period. Men and women throughout the centuries have desired lasting peace on the European Continent plagued by wars. Popes, emperors and kings have tried to unite the divided nations. Success has been so close, yet never reached. Politicians of the last century have seized that same dream and tried to forge together the union. But a series of crises has caused politicians all across Europe to doubt the reality of that vision. Although we have never been closer, the dream still appears to be a fantasy. Are we, in fact, further away from a United States of Europe than ever before?

European Leaders Had a Dream

A united Europe was not the original idea of postwar politicians, but the shock of World War ii gave Europe the incentive to unite. It was a dream of peace, safety, freedom, unity and prosperity.

In his famous speech to the academic youth at the University of Zurich in 1946, Winston Churchill said:

There is a remedy which … would in a few years make all Europe … free and … happy. It is to re-create the European family, or as much of it as we can, and to provide it with a structure under which it can dwell in peace, in safety and in freedom. We must build a kind of United States of Europe.

Konrad Adenauer, the first chancellor of postwar Germany, had a very similar dream: “It is my deepest belief that the United States of Europe can finally bring peace to this Continent which has been ravaged by war so often.”

A dream was born in the midst of the ashes of World War ii. European politicians have diligently tried to weld the cracks dividing Europe.

Yet as great as the dream was, it has been equally difficult to fulfill.

We have never been closer to a United States of Europe, as Churchill described it: “The structure of the United States of Europe will be such as to make the material strength of a single state less important. Small nations will count as much as large ones and gain their honor by a contribution to the common cause. The ancient states and principalities of Germany, freely joined for mutual convenience in a federal system, might take their individual places among the United States of Europe. “

But that dream seems set to rip Europe apart once more. Many nations sacrificed their national interest for that common cause. But now they feel betrayed, insecure in the face of Russia in aggression, helplessly caught in a financial crisis, and overwhelmed by refugees.

German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said (Trumpet translation throughout):

Europe is undoubtedly moving toward troubled water and needs to reestablish itself quickly. Brexit has thrown us into turmoil; doubts about Europe’s performance and its ability to act are getting louder. What counts now is giving Europe a common perspective for the future once more, as well as advancing forward on issues such as European security, migration and economic growth. And that certainly doesn’t work with those who see a return to nationalism as a solution to everything.

The Euro Crisis

One of the dreams of the founding fathers of modern Europe was that of financial prosperity. One of the earliest hopes was that Europe could unite and, in mutual cooperation, benefit from one another. The eurozone was formed to advance these aspirations. Yet only a few members really benefited from this creation. Southern Europe, in particular, suffered major setbacks. Since 1999, Italy has not witnessed any economic growth, despite becoming a member of the eurozone.

The 2008 global financial crisis was one of the strongest earthquakes that hit the EU, and its ruins are still evident today. Unemployment in the southern states of Europe surged to unprecedented heights, billions in debt were accumulated, and bailout after bailout was given. The Greek crisis left scars on the eurozone. And another euro crisis threatens to emerge in 2017, as Greece, Italy and Portugal face an unsurmountable financial crisis.

The Russian Threat

Another dream that drove European unity was security. Not only did Europe hope to be resilient against internal war, but it also hoped to be guarded against external threats, such as Russia. The collapse of the Soviet Union and the formation of the EU gave Europeans reason to hope.

But the Ukraine crisis shattered that dream.

The EU was thrilled to expand and negotiations with Ukraine moved toward it joining the Union. But Russia blocked those advances, invaded Ukraine, and left Eastern Europe in fear. The EU, formed to be a unified defender against aggression, was frightened by the aggressor. Eastern European countries working to join the EU had anticipated protection but were left with only the vapor of a vanishing dream.

Just as Southern Europe’s hope for financial prosperity has been disappointed, so has the east’s expectation of security.

The Refugee Crisis

The dream of unity and togetherness also turned out to be a mere illusion. As millions of refugees streamed over the coastlines, nations across Europe quickly started to think nationalistically again. Instead of working out a common European response as Germany and other nations proposed, individual nations acted on their own—rejecting EU guidelines.

Terrorist attacks by refugees are driving Europe together and apart at the same time. As some nations look for a common response, others seek isolationism.

Divided at All Corners

Europe is divided—divided between north and south, prosperity and poverty; divided between east and west, fear and tranquility; divided between nation and union, nationalism and internationalism.

The abysses seem too great to be overcome. Europe seems on the verge of breaking apart and shattering into individual pieces. Brexit has been a sign for many that the dream of a united Europe as it was envisioned has vanished. Britain was the first to declare the dream an illusion.

The bandages that seemed to keep the union together are expanding and tearing with each financial crisis and bailout, with each Russian move that frightens another eastern nation, with each storm of refugees.

What will happen if Greece no longer submits to EU regulations? If Russia expands its borders? If the refugee deal with Turkey fails? European leaders ask themselves these questions and conclude that the Union is on the verge of collapse.

Yet a few nations haven’t given up the dream of unity.

The German Solution

Few have realized that ever since the dream of a United States of Europe started to form in the minds of postwar politicians there have been two entirely different visions: one formulated by Britain and the U.S. to ensure peace on the Continent and serve as a bulwark against Russia, and the other a malicious plan to reestablish German hegemony on the Continent. These two visions, as opposite as they are, are both part of the foundation of the European Union today.

Yes, the dream of a United States of Europe the way Churchill imagined it has failed, not least because Britain left the Union. But that failure allows another dream of a different United States of Europe to take its place. Britain hoped to suppress German hegemony in a European Union in which no single country has total dominion over other nations. Obviously, this has never been Germany’s dream.

“The fate of Europe depends on the solution of the German question,” Konrad Adenauer said. “The fate of Germany is also the destiny of Europe.”

His statement has never been more true. Europe’s leadership depends on Germany; Berlin’s approach to Moscow determines Brussels’s course; and Frankfurt’s solution to the financial crisis is the solution everyone has to accept. If Germany leads, Europe has to follow.

Yet Germany’s different dream of a United States of Europe has not been able to emerge until now, with the lifting of the restraints of Great Britain and the U.S.

Schäuble’s Aspiration

Do not be misled by the current German leadership. Germany has its goals, and chancellors are only temporary. Despite Chancellor Angela Merkel’s efforts to keep the current union together, ministers both inside and outside her cabinet have a vision of a different United States of Europe.

German Minister of Finance Wolfgang Schäuble who is seen as the second-most powerful politician in Germany, views the crises very differently from Merkel.

For years, he has called for the establishment of a core Europe. “In order to make progress in all of these areas, we should keep using the approach that proved its mettle back in 1994: to establish cores of cooperation within the EU that enable smaller, willing groups of member states to forge ahead,” Schäuble wrote in an article coauthored by Karl Lamers (also a member of the Christian Democratic Union).

The call in 1994 was rejected by France, but today, we live in a different Europe—a Europe that is desperate for solutions. But Schäuble did not give up on this ambition. In “Seeing in Crises the Last Best Chance to Unite Europe,” the New York Times wrote in 2011:

Where the world finds only chaos and impending disaster in the European debt crisis, Wolfgang Schäuble sees the long-awaited urgency to finish the half-complete job of unifying Europe. As Germany’s finance minister and a close confidant of Chancellor Angela Merkel, he is in a uniquely powerful position to shape the outcome. …The ultimate goal, Mr. Schäuble says, is a political union with a European president directly elected by the people.”What we’re now doing with the fiscal union, what I’m describing here, is a short-term step for the currency,” Mr. Schäuble said. “In a larger context, naturally we need a political union.” …He sees the turmoil as not an obstacle but a necessity. “We can only achieve a political union if we have a crisis,” Mr. Schäuble said.

In 2014, Schäuble called for an inner-core parliament for the eurozone. This January, he called for a new coalition that would be willing to act in the refugee crisis. In October, he called for a joint EU defense budget.

Today’s crises are separating Churchill’s utopian vision from Germany’s real ambitions.

And Schäuble is not the only one calling for a stronger, more unified and more powerful political union. Others desire it with even greater aspiration, such as the extremely popular former German Defense Minster Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg.

Guttenberg sees Brexit as an opportunity for a fundamental debate on the future of the Union. In an interview with Michael Krons, Guttenberg said that Europe has always been a union of different speeds and everything else has been an illusion. He called it a mistake to try to create a monetary union and now a military union without first creating a political union. “I think we need a few individual heads that are willing to take the risk of complete failure. It needs to be connected with the willingness to fail, and they will probably be set on fire for what they are doing. But that discussion needs to come beyond one’s borders with France, Italy and probably even Britain” (Phoenix, October 17).

A united political union under German leadership is the subject of many prophecies, and Guttenberg is a man to watch.

A Dream of a Church-State Unity

“Take Guttenberg’s impeccable Frankish-Bavarian Roman Catholic connections into mind and add them to the thread of political thought that has pervaded Bavarian politics for decades under [Franz Joseph] Strauss and [Edmund] Stoiber—the dream of a united Catholic Europe under German leadership. Then add to it something that neither Strauss nor Stoiber ever possessed—a striking family title that cements all of these connections together—and we have a man to watch in the shaky coalition of Chancellor Merkel’s government,” late Trumpet columnist Ron Fraser wrote in 2009.

The way has been paved for such a man to enter the scene and give Europe the passionate leadership that it needs and wants.

In 1952, Herbert W. Armstrong wrote, based upon a prophecy in Revelation 17 and current events of the time: “The United States is determined, now, to let nothing stand in the way of building up a rearmed, independent Germany. This will be the heart and core of the united Europe that will revive the Roman Empire.”

Germany has been allowed to unite. And U.S. President-elect Donald Trump will probably open the door for a European core to unite politically and militarily around it.

In his Jan. 23, 1980, co-worker letter, Mr. Armstrong warned that the fear of Russia “will be the spark to bring the heads of nations in Europe together with the Vatican to form a ‘United Nations of Europe.’” He wrote on July 22, 1984, that a massive banking crisis in America “could suddenly result in triggering European nations to unite as a new world power larger than … the U.S.”

How is it that we are seeing a united Europe form exactly as it was foretold in various prophecies?

In “A Monumental Moment in European History!” Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry wrote:

But here’s the most astounding and inspiring part of Revelation 17: God put it in the minds of Europe’s leaders to do what they’re doing! Verse 17 reads, “For God hath put in their hearts to fulfil his will, and to agree, and give their kingdom unto the beast, until the words of God shall be fulfilled.” The church leading the Holy Roman Empire is not God’s true Church. But God does allow this church to gain control of this German-led European beast power. Expect the Catholic Church to become more vocal and for this church-state axis to become more evident.

Contrary to what many EU skeptics say, we are living in a time when we have never been closer to the formation of a United States of Europe! The crises are perfectly laid out for Europe to become a superpower like the world has never seen. A United States of Europe is about to emerge, but it will not be like the one Churchill imagined.

The Bible foretells of 10 European nations that will unite with the backing of the Catholic Church to form a financial superpower more powerful than the U.S., a military union that will be able to stand in the face of Russia and solve the refugee crisis and terrorism in the Middle East. This Union will rule the world—until it is crushed at the return of Jesus Christ.

How to Make America Great Again

How to Make America Great Again

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Listen to the Trumpet Daily radio program that aired on December 29, 2016.

“Make America Great Again” has been the most famous slogan of 2016. But in order to understand how to make America great again, we need to know how America was made great in the first place. In today’s program, Trumpet staff writer Richard Palmer examines the cause of America’s rise to superpower status.

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Europe’s Satellite Navigation System Goes Live

Europe’s Satellite Navigation System Goes Live

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Europe’s Galileo system reveals its superpower ambition.

Europe’s satellite navigation system, Galileo, went live on December 15. The project is a result of the European Union’s refusal to continue relying on the United States and shows its determination to join the “big leagues.” Until now, only the two Cold War superpowers—the U.S. and Russia—have had their own satellite navigation systems.

The milestone comes as the EU makes the military uses of its space program more public.

Satellite navigation—far beyond a simple convenience for travelers with a poor sense of direction—has been growing in importance. Automated vehicles of all kinds rely on navigation systems. They are heavily used in mining and have even led to the advent of “precision agriculture.” From construction to archaeology, more and more uses for the technology are being found.

But it is modern militaries that rely most heavily on satellite navigation, which is why Europe has been so determined to build its own.

Keeping track of your own forces and tracking enemy forces with pinpoint accuracy is a huge bonus on the battlefield. So are smart munitions—bombs, missiles and individual artillery projectiles—guided exactly to their target.

The world only really needs one navigation system. But no nation wants its military to be dependent on another’s—so half a dozen powers are working on their own version of the Global Positioning System (gps).

America’s gps, or Navstar, is the most well-known satellite navigation system. Russia developed its Global Navigation Satellite System (glonass) during the Cold War. It fell into disrepair, but Russian President Vladimir Putin invested heavily in its restoration, and it now covers the whole world.

The Chinese are working on their BeiDou or Compass system. It currently only operates in the Asia-Pacific region, but they plan to have global coverage by 2020. India and Japan are also working on their own regional systems.

Just about every major power in the world wants its own navigation system.

Independence from America has been at the heart of Europe’s efforts right from the start. In 2001, French President Jacques Chirac said that without Galileo, EU nations would become “vassals” to America. In 2002, EU Directorate-General for Transport and Energy (the department overseeing the Galileo satellite navigation project) noted that “Galileo will underpin the common European defense policy that the member states have decided to establish.” The report continued:

There is no question here of coming into conflict with the United States, which is and will remain our ally, but simply a question of putting an end to a situation of dependence. If the EU finds it necessary to undertake a security mission that the U.S. does not consider to be in its interest, it will be impotent unless it has the satellite navigation technology that is now indispensable. Although designed primarily for civilian applications, Galileo will also give the EU a military capability.

The system now has 18 satellites. It needs 24 to become fully operational. Another eight will be launched in 2017 and 2018. Europe aims to have a total of 30 satellites, so that it has spares for backup. Until it reaches full operational capacity in 2020, the system will not be available at all times.

The system also aims to be more accurate than America’s gps, giving accuracy to around one meter for free and within centimeters for paying customers.

At first, much of the Galileo system was relatively hostile to the U.S. American leaders worried that a nation they were at war with could benefit from Galileo. EU officials stated that they would not prevent American enemies from accessing Galileo in time of war. In fact, they planned to have Galileo operate on the same frequency as gps—meaning America could not jam an enemy’s access to Galileo without jamming its own access to gps.

U.S. Air Force officials threatened to shoot down European satellites if such a situation arose, causing Europe to back down. The frosty relationship caused by the two competing systems has since thawed.

The EU likes to emphasize that its system is a civilian project, unlike the Russian and American systems. But for all practical purposes, they are the same. Galileo is also set up so that, in times of crisis, it can be restricted to only European military personnel and emergency services.

German Member of the European Parliament Reinhard Bütikofer claimed that the European Commission had deliberately hidden how widespread the military uses for the project were. Until March 2011, documents “did not even hint at the extent of the military uses of the project,” he said.

Had he been paying better attention, he would have seen it from the start.

The military uses of other European space programs are also becoming more evident. On October 26, the EU released its first ever space policy document, which highlights the military importance of its efforts. “Space is also of strategic importance for Europe,” it notes. “It reinforces Europe’s role as a stronger global player and is an asset for its security and defense.”

The document states that EU space programs will consider “additional services” to help meet “emerging needs” in Europe’s “security and defense.”

Another major project of Europe’s space program is the Copernicus Earth Observation System. It was originally touted as a tool to support “environmental security.” But the EU has tweaked the wording, ever so slightly; its purpose now is to support “the environment and security.”

The European Parliament’s stated military purposes for the system include “border monitoring outside the EU” and “EU peacekeeping operations”—in other words, European military operations.

“There is no Earth-observation project as big as Copernicus,” said former EU chief scientific adviser Anne Glover. “It’s already abundantly clear that the system will also be used for military operations and surveillance purposes.”

The new policy document promised to “assess further the potential” of Galileo and Copernicus to “meet EU autonomy and security needs.”

Europe’s push for independence in space shows its aspirations to have a military independent of the U.S. The term “strategic autonomy” has become increasingly common in European official documents—both at the EU and national level. Europe wants to be able to act on its own and act around the world. And with the U.S. so dependent on technology, Galileo and Copernicus have the potential to turn America’s space advantage into a weakness.

Watch for Europe’s continued push to make its military independent of America’s gps. For more on the progress nations around the world are making in becoming space powers, read “The Quiet Space Race.”

Barack Obama’s Fitting Finish and the Remilitarization of Germany

Listen to the Trumpet Daily radio program that aired on December 28, 2016.

Throughout his presidency, Barack Obama has abandoned allies, embraced enemies, and reacted coolly to earthshaking catastrophes. Bret Stephens wrote, “Strategic half measures, underhanded tactics and moralizing gestures have been the president’s style from the beginning.” On today’s show, Stephen Flurry discusses Mr. Obama’s legacy and how it will impact the future of the United States.

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America’s ‘Shameful Ambush’ of Israel at the UN

America’s ‘Shameful Ambush’ of Israel at the UN

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‘When the chips are down, I have Israel’s back.’

“This was a stab in the back against the Israelis.” It was the “peak of hypocrisy” and “one of the biggest American rebukes of its long-standing ally in recent memory.” With a “dangerous parting shot,” the United States “joined the jackals at the UN.” Most of all, it was a “shameful ambush” of an ally.

These were just some of the reactions to the United States’ abstention from United Nations Security Council Resolution 2334, which, among other things, condemns, reaffirms and reiterates that Israeli homes in the West Bank and East Jerusalem are illegal. But on Friday, December 23, when America refrained from vetoing the resolution, these houses were referred to as impersonal “settlements.”

As the U.S. reversed decades of diplomatic precedent to betray Israel, the room erupted into applause.

But didn’t President Barack Obama affirm his friendship to Israel? He definitely said he would have Israel’s back. Here’s what the president told the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (aipac) in March 2012 (emphasis added):

The fact is, my administration’s commitment to Israel’s security has been unprecedented. Our military and intelligence cooperation has never been closer. Our joint exercises and training have never been more robust. Despite a tough budget environment, our security assistance has increased every single year. …When one-sided resolutions are brought up at the Human Rights Council, we oppose them. When Israeli diplomats feared for their lives in Cairo, we intervened to save them. When there are efforts to boycott or divest from Israel, we will stand against them. And whenever an effort is made to delegitimize the state of Israel, my administration has opposed them. So there should not be a shred of doubt by now—when the chips are down, I have Israel’s back.

On the day after the resolution, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu noted the obvious fact that America’s abstention was not mere negligence or a change in position by the U.S. It was a “shameful ambush” engineered by the president.

“From the information that we have, we have no doubt that the Obama administration initiated it, stood behind it, coordinated on the wording, and demanded that it be passed,” Netanyahu said on Sunday. “I told John Kerry [that] friends do not take friends to the UN Security Council.”

Former U.S. Ambassador to the UN John Bolton also believes the United States must have cooperated in the resolutions formation. “The sponsors of the resolution … obviously had to consult with the Obama administration to tell them what was in the resolution so that it was sufficient for Obama to order an abstention,” Bolton told Fox News in an interview. “It was entirely predictable for people in the pro-Israel community in the United States. … We should’ve seen this coming.”

An Ancient Comparison

In a sort of sick irony, the passing of Resolution 2334 occurred only a day before the beginning of Hanukkah. Israeli Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon referenced the historical event in Israel’s formal response to the UN. He said:

Tomorrow night, Israel and the entire Jewish community around the world will celebrate the holiday of Hanukkah. Over 2,000 years ago King Antiochus [IV] banished the Jewish people from our temple in Jerusalem and issued decrees trying to sever us from religion and our heritage, but we prevailed. The Jewish people fought back. We regained our independence and relight the menorah candles in the temple. …We overcame those decrees during the time of the Maccabees, and we will overcome this evil decree today. …And we will continue to be a Jewish state, proudly reclaiming the land of our forefathers, where the Maccabees fooled their oppressors and King David ruled from Jerusalem.

On the day before the celebration of the Maccabean revolt, it became illegal for thousands of Jews to live in their homes. As analyst Charles Krauthammer put it, the “appalling” resolution “declares that any Jew who lives in the Jewish quarter of Jerusalem—the Jewish quarter, inhabited for 1,000 years—is illegal, breaking international law, essentially an outlaw, [and] can be hauled into the international criminal court and international courts in Europe.”

But, as Ambassador Bolton noted, it was “entirely predictable” for those who haven’t bought President Obama’s pro-Israel rhetoric. In “November 9 and the Onslaught Against Israel,” Trumpet writer Callum Wood wrote that “until now, President Obama has kept quiet on the [Israel] issue for fear of shedding negative light on the Clinton campaign. Post-November 8, that no longer matters.”

“But come November 9, the tables could drastically turn. The Obama administration needs do nothing at all—just sit back and allow the anti-Israel resolutions to surge in,” Wood continued. And that’s exactly what has happened. The special relationship with Israel is over, and now the rest of the world can see it.

Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry pointed to the breaking of the special relationship in his article “What Inspires President Obama’s Relationship With Israel?” In the lead up to Hanukkah in 2015, President Obama hosted Israeli President Reuven Rivlin and his wife for the first of two Hanukkah receptions in the East Room of the White House. Mr. Obama commented that “all of us come together, along with Jews around the world, to celebrate a band of Maccabees who inspire us even today.” Mr. Flurry wrote:

Is that true? Does that history inspire him today? When you look at the diplomatic insults and the hatred the Obama administration has poured on Israel and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, when you look at the pressure this administration has put on Israel to negotiate with people who use terrorism, and when you look at how openly it has enabled Iran to obtain nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles, wouldn’t you say that a leader like that finds Antiochus more of a model to follow than Judas Maccabeus?

To gain a deeper understanding of the relationship between Israel and the United States, read the above-mentioned articles. They show not only what has happened in the past, but what will happen because of the two nations’ broken relationship. President-elect Donald Trump says “things will be different” at the UN once he’s in office, but long-lasting damage has already been done. The brotherhood between Israel and the United States has been broken—and this was emphasized by Friday’s “shameful ambush” at the UN.

Was President Obama Behind the Anti-Settlement Resolution at the United Nations?

Was President Obama Behind the Anti-Settlement Resolution at the United Nations?

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Listen to the Trumpet Daily radio program that aired on December 27, 2016.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told United States Secretary of State John Kerry that “friends don’t take friends to the Security Council.” And yet, that’s exactly what the U.S. did to Israel last Friday. On today’s program, Trumpet Middle East correspondent Brent Nagtegaal discusses the response from Israel and the stunning revelation that the Obama administration was actually behind the resolution itself.

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