Egypt Rejects Handover of Islands to Saudi Arabia, Foreshadowing ‘Iran Pivot’

Egypt Rejects Handover of Islands to Saudi Arabia, Foreshadowing ‘Iran Pivot’

Pool/Egypt Presidency/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

On January 16, an Egyptian court rejected a plan by President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi to transfer control of two Red Sea islands to Saudi Arabia, a move which some analysts say could set the stage for Egypt to make an “Iran pivot.”

Last April, during a visit by Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz al-Saud, President Sisi signed a maritime demarcation deal that shifted the Egypt-Saudi border in a way that positioned the uninhabited islands of Tiran and Sanafir in Saudi waters. This essentially transferred their control from Egypt to the Saudi kingdom.

Tiran and Sanafir

The islands, less than five miles from both Egypt and Saudi Arabia, are strategically valuable because their position at the mouth of the Gulf of Aqaba grants them control of the sole ocean route to Jordan’s seaport of Aqaba and to Israel’s seaport of Eilat.

The move was seen as a gift from Sisi to the Saudi regime, which has pumped tens of billions of dollars in financial aid into Egypt in recent years. The New York Times called the transfer plan a “show of gratitude” for the Saudi kingdom’s support. But the news prompted widespread public outcry among Egyptians who say the islands are an integral part of Egypt.

In June, an administrative court ruled that Sisi’s border demarcation deal was illegitimate, and that both islands should remain under Egyptian control. The verdict issued on Monday upheld this June ruling with a final decision that cannot be appealed by any administrative court. Egyptians celebrated the court’s decision:

Saudi Arabia, however, is angered by the ruling, which adds fresh strain to the already tense ties between Cairo and Riyadh. Back in October, evidence of the tensions was abundant when Saudi Arabia halted its oil shipments to Egypt for an “indefinite” duration. Reuters said the move suggested a “deepening rift” between the two nations.

Egypt’s decision to reject the island transfer will further deepen this rift, and could prompt the Egyptians to boost ties with Saudi Arabia’s main political rival. On Monday, ZeroHedge said the Egyptian court’s decision could be “setting [the] stage” for Egypt to make an “Iran pivot.”

After asking which nation Egypt may look to for oil if the court’s decision adds overwhelming strain to Egypt-Saudi ties, ZeroHedge said:

We hinted at the answer in November, when we reported that [Egyptian] Oil Minister [Tarek] El-Molla said that he is in negotiations with Iran, Saudi Arabia’s sworn political rival, to try to strike new oil deals, hinting that Egypt may be the latest to join a fledgling Mideast axis which includes Iran, Syria, Russia and perhaps, Turkey. … It has yet to be confirmed if, indeed, Egypt—whose Suez Canal has critical geopolitical importance—has pivoted away from a Saudi sphere of influence (and oil supplies), and into that of Iran.

As the report notes, such an Egyptian pivot is not confirmed. And the January 16 court decision may not end up being a deciding factor that causes such a pivot. Nevertheless, the Trumpet expects Egypt to break ties with Saudi Arabia and pivot into Iran’s sphere of influence. To understand why, read Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry’s article “Iran-Egypt Alliance Prophesied.”

The Iran Nuclear Deal: One Year On

The Iran Nuclear Deal: One Year On

ATTA KENARE/AFP/Getty Images

In spite of the deal, Iran continues to push.

One year ago, the world witnessed the implementation of what was supposed to be one of the greatest peace deals ever struck. The Iran nuclear deal, agreed to in July 2015, was formally implemented on Jan. 16, 2016.

The deal was meant to cut off Iran, the world’s number one terrorist-sponsoring nation with aspirations for nuclear weapons, from obtaining the bomb. It required Iran to make numerous changes to its nuclear program, including cutting its uranium stockpiles by 98 percent, reducing the number of centrifuges it installs, and reducing its level of enrichment. In response, the United States, along with other world powers, lifted sanctions on Iran that had been in place because of its illegal nuclear program. All totaled, $150 billion in assets were unfrozen. Vigorous inspections, the threat of snap-back sanctions, and time clauses delaying Iran’s ability to access certain nuclear technology were promised in the deal to ensure that Iran never got a nuclear weapon.

U.S. President Barack Obama called the deal “a milestone in preventing Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon,” while Secretary of State John Kerry said that “the entire world [was] safer because the threat of a nuclear weapon has been reduced.”

Now, one year on, we must ask: Is the world a safer place? Has peace come to the Middle East? Has Iran given up on its nuclear ambitions? All indications from the past year thunder a resounding “No.” Rather, the implementation of this deal has only emboldened Iran and given it access to new military hardware and billions of additional dollars to fund its operations.

Pushing at America

Despite extending an olive branch to Iran through the deal, the U.S. has received nothing in return but harassment. Since the deal was implemented, Iranian naval vessels have made repeated provocative maneuvers around U.S ships operating in international waters in the Persian Gulf.

The most recent episode happened on January 9, when five Iranian vessels harassed three U.S. Navy ships in the Strait of Hormuz over the course of nine hours. The Iranian vessels made six separate approaches against the U.S. vessels, one of which was deemed unprofessional, resulting in warning shots being fired at the Iranian craft. This came after numerous radio calls, flares and whistle blasts were used to deter the Iranian craft.

Referring to these provocative moves, Pentagon spokesman Capt. Jeff Davis said that “a total of 35 in 2016 … were assessed to be unsafe and unprofessional.” Only 35 of these incidents were deemed unprofessional; the January 9 incident saw the Iranian vessels make six passes at American ships, and only one was considered unprofessional. Added to that, Captain Davis said that “the vast majority of those were in the first half of 2016,” which would have only been a few months after the deal was implemented. Why would Iran act so aggressively—and so quickly—against the nation that was so instrumental in reintroducing it to the global community?

In 2016, American forces also came under threat when Iranian-backed Houthi rebels fired two missiles at a U.S. Navy destroyer operating off the coast of Yemen in the Red Sea on October 9 (the third such attack against U.S. naval forces in the area). Another incident saw a small Iranian vessel pointed its weapon at a U.S. military helicopter in the Strait of Hormuz on November 26. It was as if Iran was taking every opportunity to take a shot at the U.S. in 2016. If it spurns America so much, what do you suppose its attitude is toward the nuclear deal?

Iran has received little more than a tongue lashing for all of its provocative moves over the past year. America has willingly overlooked these acts, because it is desperate to keep the deal intact. Iran knows this and has taken every opportunity to make America look weak to the world.

Pushing the Limits: Ballistic Missile Testing

Last year also saw Iran push against the restrictions placed on its ballistic missile program. During 2016, Iran conducted four ballistic missile tests, despite much opposition from the world community. While these tests did not violate the nuclear agreement, Western powers viewed it as a violation of a United Nations security resolution which “calls upon” Iran to refrain from any activity connected to ballistic missiles. However, nothing significant was done to deter Iran’s missile program.

In reality, Iran was able to forge ahead with these missile tests because of the nuclear deal. Following the deal’s agreement, the UN Security Council adopted a new resolution that outlined the conditions of lifting its sanctions on Iran. This resolution also carried with it the new wording regarding Iran’s ballistic missile programs. While a previous resolution stated that Iran “shall not undertake any activity related to ballistic missiles capable of delivering nuclear weapons,” the new resolution softened the language, simply “calling upon” Iran to stop. As many point out, this weak wording makes it impossible to enforce the resolution, and thus it is not legally binding. It would be up to the Security Council to determine how to interpret the language of the resolution, and Russia, having veto power, stated it would not allow any sanctions to be imposed on Iran.

The Washington Post reported that the new wording also dictates that Iran stop testing missiles “designed to be capable of delivering nuclear weapons” instead of just being “capable” of delivering such warheads. Iran argued that the missiles it tested were not “designed” to carry those warheads, giving it more legal coverage.

So instead of making the world a safer place, the nuclear deal actually gave Iran the green light to press ahead with developing ballistic missiles. Iran now has one year of research and development under its belt, and it’s unlikely that the UN will pass any new resolutions to deter Iran’s progress.

Iran also proved that its ambitions to destroy the State of Israel have not been abated by the nuclear deal. During a test in March 2016, Iran launched a missile carrying the Hebrew message, “Israel must be wiped out.” The test occurred the same day that U.S. Vice President Joe Biden visited Israel. Though Iran has frequently called for the destruction of Israel, “this was the first reported post-deal display of anti-Israeli messaging in an Iranian [missile] test,” Newsweek reported.

Pushing the Limits: Heavy Water Production

In 2016, Iran also disregarded limitations on the amount of heavy water it had. Over the past 12 months, Iran twice exceeded those limits: in February, one month after the deal was implemented; and again in November. Both events were met without any major criticism.

U.S. State Department spokesman Mark Toner didn’t seem overly concerned about the excessive production. “It’s important to note that Iran made no effort to hide this, hide what it was doing from the [International Atomic Energy Agency],” he said

While that might seem well and good, the Institute for Science and International Security has raised serious concerns over a heavy water “loophole” that exists in the nuclear deal. Iran is only allowed to have 130 metric tons of heavy water; any additional heavy water that it produces has to be shipped to Oman were it is to be sold off.

This loophole exists, though, because Iran had no desire to stop producing heavy water once it reached the cap nor to dispose of any excess. The institute’s report stated:

Iran did not want to either stop production of heavy water or blend down its excess, and finding enough international buyers to take the heavy water at the time was not possible. Instead of saying no to Iran’s desire to “have its cake and eat it too,” the Obama administration endorsed a major concession. The Joint Commission ruled in secret during late 2015 or early 2016 to allow Iran to park its unsold heavy water in excess of the limit in Oman while Iran sought buyers, which ultimately turned out to be the United States and Russia, two countries that did not need the heavy water.

Over the past year, Iran has been free to continue producing heavy water and sell it off for additional cash to fund its operations. In total, 81 metric tons of heavy water have been shipped to Oman, all of which needs to be sold. Already America has bought some of this heavy water, effectively funding Iran’s dangerous purposes. If it continues to buy more out of a sense of obligation, it will disrupt the established market of heavy water produces by legitimate and viable companies. Added to that, the heavy water Iran production comes from the Arak heavy water production plant, which has been illegally outfitted with “goods in violation of sanctions and export control laws.”

Is it any wonder Iran is more than happy to exceed the limit of heavy water it produces and fess up to it? It has everything to gain by doing so.

Pushing the Limits: Arms Purchases

Following the implementation of the nuclear deal and the lifting of sanctions, Iran was quick to begin making arms deals. The first arms deal with Russia was made in February for $8 billion, which included purchasing a more sophisticated antiaircraft missile system and a batch of warplanes. Then, in November, U.S. officials voiced concern after another $10 billion deal was inked between Iran and Russia for more military hardware, including tanks, planes and artillery systems. All these deals would see Iran take possession of the hardware over the course of the next few years.

Under current UN Security Council resolutions, Iran is banned from purchasing offensive weaponry without permission from the Security Council. But Iran has yet to request permission to purchase these arms.

This past year, Iran also received its shipment of S-300 surface-to-air missiles from Russia, thanks again to the nuclear deal. The missile system had been purchased in 2007, but Russia blocked delivery after the U.S. and Israel protested the sale. Once the nuclear deal was agreed upon in 2015, Russian President Vladimir Putin allowed the sale to proceed. After receiving the first shipment in May, Iran deployed the system around the Fordow underground uranium enrichment facility in August. Why would Iran deploy state-of-the-art antiaircraft missile batteries around an underground nuclear facility if it’s just being used for civilian purposes?

While 2016 looked to be an aggressive year for Iran’s arms purchases, 2017 looks to be even more so. In May, Iran announced its 2016–2017 budget, which has $19 billion allocated for the military. This is a 90 percent increase over the previous year. Once again, Iran has the nuclear deal to thank for the increase. With sanctions lifted, Iran now can seek more loans from international banks to fund its military expansion. The most belittling aspect of Iran’s budget increase is the fact that Iran earmarked all $1.7 billion it received from the U.S. last January for the release of hostages to go toward its 2017 military budget.

Iran, One Year On

It is true that the iaea, which monitors Iran’s nuclear program, issued several reports last year saying the country is in compliance regarding its nuclear-related obligations. But one year on from the implementation of the nuclear deal, it’s clear Iran has gained much from it. Thanks to the deal, Iran has spent the last year using every opportunity to stick it to America’s military with no consequences, develop its ballistic missiles, and gain access to billions of dollars of additional funds as it continues to be the number one state sponsor of terrorism.

The nuclear deal has not made the world safer but more dangerous. Iran has already reaped all these benefits, and it’s now one year closer to the expiration of the nuclear deal, assuming the Iranians don’t violate the deal before then.

If all this happened over the course of 2016, what does 2017 hold? This nuclear deal has plunged the world into a dangerous age. As Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry wrote after the deal, “Iran changed nothing in its policies of aggression, subversion and sponsoring terrorism. It didn’t even say it would reform in any of these areas! Without giving in on anything, Iran was given all it needed in order to greatly accelerate its race toward getting the nuclear bomb.”

If you haven’t done so yet, read our free booklet The King of the South. Bible prophecy makes clear that Iran is steering the world to a devastating conflict that will touch the lives of every person on Earth. However, there is great hope in all of this: Following on the heels of the soon-coming destruction, Jesus Christ will return to put an end to all war and suffering. Mankind will finally be free of the threat of nuclear war forever!

The Despicable Commutation of Private Manning and the Media’s Love Affair With Barack Obama

The Despicable Commutation of Private Manning and the Media’s Love Affair With Barack Obama

Alex Wong/Getty Images

Listen to the Trumpet Daily radio program that aired on January 18, 2017.

Pvt. Bradley Manning was serving a 35-year prison sentence for leaking top-secret documents that jeopardized America’s national security. He turned the documents over to Wikileaks, an anti-American activist group. On Tuesday, against wishes of his defense secretary and top Army leaders, President Barack Obama commuted Manning’s sentence. What is behind this last-minute decision to free Private Manning? Listen to Stephen Flurry explain on today’s Trumpet Daily Radio Show.

Listen to or download Trumpet Daily Radio Show on:

http://app.stitcher.com/browse/feed/68064/details

https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/trumpet-daily-radio-show/id1003885427

http://kpcg.fm/shows/trumpet-daily-radio-show

Donald Trump and the Post-Truth World

Donald Trump and the Post-Truth World

DON EMMERT/AFP/Getty Images

Listen to the Trumpet Daily radio program that aired on January 17, 2017.

Following the United States election in November, the major media blamed Donald Trump’s stunning victory on the dissemination of “fake news” by right-wing types. In fact, fake news permeates every division of the major media conglomerate. And as Melanie Phillips noted in a recent column, this “post-truth” culture started decades ago with the doctrine of postmodernism—the belief that truth is relative, that there are no absolutes. Truth in journalism simply is not valued the way it once was. On today’s program, Stephen Flurry explains how important it is to be diligent seekers of truth—especially in the post-truth world of today.

Listen to or download Trumpet Daily Radio Show on:

http://app.stitcher.com/browse/feed/68064/details

https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/trumpet-daily-radio-show/id1003885427

http://kpcg.fm/shows/trumpet-daily-radio-show

Analyzing Forbes ‘Most Powerful People’—and Prophecy

Analyzing Forbes ‘Most Powerful People’—and Prophecy

Kremlin.ru/Creative Commons, Armin Linnartz/Creative Commons, Korea.net/Creative Commons, Pete Souza/Creative Commons, Nicolas Asouri-Pool/Getty Images

The popular ranking that is more than meets the eye

Just who are the world’s most powerful people? Perhaps several names come to mind—politicians, financiers, religious leaders, etc. The human fascination with sheer power runs deep in our psyche. Knowing and understanding the power players in our modern world helps us identify historic trends and chart future scenarios. And it is just downright interesting. As such, wouldn’t it be helpful to have some sort of global ranking of the most powerful leaders? That’s what the Forbes “Most Powerful People” list has done every year since 2009.

Forbes is a highly respected organization specializing in business and financial news, with a popular “list” series, ranking the most powerful, the richest, the best companies, colleges, places, etc. The Forbes “Most Powerful People” ranking is carefully calculated. Forbes analyzes an individual’s “power” using four factors: general power over people (e.g., the size of a person’s political, employment or religious following); financial resources at disposal; power across multiple spheres of influence (not just in a niche sector); and active use of power. A panel of editors ranks each individual according to these prerequisites before averaging them into a composite scoring. Forbes is the first to admit that its lists will be disputed. As its 2016 summary article states, “It’s meant to be the beginning of a conversation, not the final word.” Whatever the differing opinions, Forbes certainly gives a good idea of not only real power but perceived power around the world.

This article will examine Forbes’s top five world players since the list began in 2009, up to its recently released 2016 list. The rankings are very revealing.

2009

2009: First position goes to newly sworn-in United States President Barack Obama; second to Chinese President Hu Jintao; and third to Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin. Ben Bernanke, chairman of the Federal Reserve (America’s central bank), places fourth. Google cofounders Sergey Brin and Larry Page share fifth.

2010

2010: Hu takes first; Obama falls to second. Saudi Arabia’s oil-rich King Abdullah takes third, with Putin slipping to fourth. Pope Benedict xvi makes it to fifth. (German Chancellor Angela Merkel follows in sixth place.)

2011

2011: Obama retakes first position; Putin rises to second; and Hu Jintao drops to third. Merkel jumps up to fourth place, and Microsoft’s Bill Gates makes an appearance in fifth.

2012

2012: President Obama retains his number one spot, yet incredibly it is Merkel who makes it to second place, followed by Putin at third, Bill Gates at fourth, and Benedict at fifth. (After Hu’s retirement, new Chinese President Xi Jinping starts off at ninth.)

2013

2013: Russia’s Putin claws his way into first position, pushing Obama to second. Jinping rockets from ninth to third place, with the newly appointed Pope Francis claiming fourth. Angela Merkel drops to fifth.

2014

2014: The top five remain exactly the same as the previous year.

2015

2015: Putin claims the top spot for the third year running. Second place amazingly goes to Germany’s Merkel, above President Obama, who places third. Pope Francis retains fourth, while Xi drops to fifth.

2016

2016: Putin retains the top spot for the fourth year in a row. U.S. President-elect Donald Trump sits in second place (with outgoing President Obama falling to 48th). Angela Merkel continues to remain in the top three, followed by Xi Jinping at fourth and Pope Francis at fifth.

It is important to remember that these lists reflect the power of individuals, rather than entire countries themselves. Yet a country’s power is very much based on the power of the leader. The two are indelibly connected.

Analysis

The progression of Forbes’s most powerful people over the past eight years tells a fascinating story. Russian President Vladimir Putin’s climb to first place in 2013 is remarkable. For four straight years to the present day, he has held the title of world’s “most powerful” man. What makes this even more remarkable is that during the 2009–2012 rankings, Putin wasn’t even the leader of Russia. From 2008–2012, Putin had taken a step back into the prime minister position, while fellow compatriot Dmitry Medvedev took the presidential office. Even still, Putin remained through those years variably within Forbes’s top four, showing how much he remained the real power behind Russia. As soon as his first full year of presidency rolled around, 2013, Putin went straight to the number one spot, and he hasn’t moved since. His strong hand in the world is undisputed, as a man of heavy action and influence. While much of his activities are criticized by the international community—such as his military support for Syrian President Bashar Assad as well as his annexation of Crimea and incursions into mainland Ukraine—the fact that he has been largely successful and “gets what he wants” cements his place as the leading power player in the world.

President Obama joined the fray from the first year of his inauguration in the classic power toss-up between America and Russia. Three times within his first four-year term, he managed to take the position perhaps most expected of an American leader on Forbes’s rankings—the top. The U.S. has, throughout most of the past century, been the most powerful single nation in the world in terms of wealth, technology and military might. However, by the time Obama’s second term rolled around (and Putin regained the presidency of Russia), the best he managed was second place, before falling to third, and then rounding out his final year at 48th in the shadow of incoming President-elect Trump. Presumably Obama’s strong words yet weak action in countries like Syria and Ukraine played a major role in his slipped ranking.

China’s leader will always feature highly on this list, especially due to an influence over a population that exceeds 1 billion. No one today questions the skyrocketing power of the nation (whose economy really took off in the 1990s). In the last two decades especially, China has pushed a heavy expansion of national interests and foreign investment within other nations. While its foreign-policy power plays in the South China Sea—building and militarizing artificial islands in disputed waters—have been much protested, China has largely had its way. Embracing warm relations with Russia, as well as seeing much closer ties especially between Malaysia and the Philippines, China continues to grow stronger. Its booming population has been given a further boost with the annulment of the “one-child policy,” meaning that the nation will be looking to further expand its influence and to draw resources from other countries around the world to supply its growing numbers.

Yet surely the most interesting person graphed by Forbes over the past eight years has been Germany’s Angela Merkel. Starting off in 2009 at 15th, she skyrocketed into second place in both 2012 and 2015—in the latter, surpassing the president of the United States. This is a sign of how much the world has changed since a pulverized Germany lay defeated after World War ii. Few would have thought that within less than a lifetime, Germany’s chancellor would be ranked as the second-most powerful leader in the world, above the United States. Even after Trump swept into second place for 2016, Merkel held on to third place. This is a remarkable achievement, considering that the next European national leader on the list for 2016, British Prime Minister Theresa May, ranked 13th.

Forbes has joined a growing number of commentators and analysts documenting Germany’s incredible rise to power in the world.

The German Ascent

Germany’s meteoric rise to power has become plainly evident around the world. In 2016, Germany had the fourth-largest gross domestic product in the world (behind the U.S., China and Japan). It is the second-largest global export market, after the U.S., according to the UK’s Department for International Trade. Thus, with all of its consolidated power, the real heart of Europe is not Brussels but Berlin.

Commentators have picked up on Germany’s ascent, with articles even referring to a “Fourth Reich.” Telegraph columnist Simon Heffer wrote a piece titled “The Fourth Reich Is Here—Without a Shot Being Fired.” The Guardian featured “Resurgent Germany Overtakes Britain and U.S.” and “How Angela Merkel Became Europe’s Undisputed Leader.” Business Insider wrote “There’s No Getting Around It—Germany Is Taking Over Europe.” Spiegel published “The Fourth Reich: What Some Europeans See When They Look at Germany.” The Belfast Telegraph analyzed Germany’s rise in “Germany Trying to Take Over Europe Again.” Chris Carter wrote “Germany: The Dominating Puppet-master of Europe” for the Commentator. YouGov ran a pre-Brexit poll titled “Germans: We Run Europe. Brits: We Don’t.” And finally, RT wrote “nato Fears Resurgent Germany, Russia.” These are just a small array of examples.

Yet theTrumpet.com and its predecessor have been predicting Germany’s rise to power for over 80 years. While the nation lay flattened after World War ii, physically divided between other countries, our founder, the late philanthropist and religious teacher Herbert W. Armstrong, declared in 1954 that “Germany inevitably [will] emerge as the leader of a united Europe.” In 1967, under his direction, the Plain Truth magazine (forerunner to the Trumpet magazine) forecast:

[There is] one thing you can count on. In fact, it is so sure you can bank on it: The cry of a political union in Europe will get louder, and before long, we will see the Common Market develop into a United States of Europe.

We now have a form of a United States of Europe in the European Union. Mr. Armstrong also specified that the union would require a common currency; just as predicted, the euro was launched in 1999, with EU countries adopting it in place of their own currencies in 2002.

In 1979, Mr. Armstrong wrote:

I have been proclaiming and writing, ever since 1935, that … the Holy Roman Empire is coming in our generation—a “United States of Europe,” combining 10 nations or groups of nations in Europe—with a union of church and state!The nations of Europe have been striving to become reunited …. Yet, on a purely political basis, they have been totally unable to unite. …This new united Europe will be, militarily and economically, as strong, or even more powerful, than either the United States or the ussr. It will be a third gigantic world power!

At the time of Mr. Armstrong’s forecast (a full decade before the Berlin Wall fell), a united Germany and Europe, more powerful than the United States or ussr, seemed ludicrous.

Fast-forward to 2012, and we see Germany’s leader—essentially Europe’s leader—ranked more powerful than Russia’s. Fast-forward to 2015, and she is ranked more powerful than that of the United States!

How could we know this would happen?

These declarations were based on Bible prophecy. Prophecies that speak of the “time of the end” describe a powerful union in Europe made up of 10 countries, joined ideologically with the Roman Catholic Church to create a final resurrected phase of the Holy Roman Empire. For the details of this prophesied German-led superpower, request our free book The Holy Roman Empire in Prophecy.

And the leader of Germany’s rise is not all that Mr. Armstrong—and now the Trumpet—has forecast. The Bible also contains prophecies about all the major nations represented by individuals within Forbes’s “Most Powerful” top five.

It declares an end-time alliance between superpowers Russia and China (among other Asian nations), led by a powerful man known as the “prince of Rosh.” Rosh is a biblical term for Russia. Request our free booklet The Prophesied ‘Prince of Russia’ for a full explanation.

The Bible further prophesies the decline in power of the United States, as well as Britain and the British Commonwealth. Forbes picked up on this decline with its ranking of America’s leadership tailing off in the last four years especially. And that once-great British Empire, which in living memory controlled about one third of the Earth’s landmass, these days only occasionally makes a peep near the bottom of Forbes’s top 10. Mr. Armstrong forecast all of this in his book The United States and Britain in Prophecy (request your free copy). He also specifically prophesied that Britain would either leave or be ejected from the European Union. The Brexit vote determining to leave the EU is now yesterday’s news.

Even other nations whose leaders are ranked highly by Forbes, such as Saudi Arabia, are not overlooked by end-time Bible prophecy (request your free copy of Gerald Flurry’s booklet The King of the South). The fact is that the Bible is not an “outdated” book. The accounts within its pages are not just legends written for “old times.” Its prophecies are not “vague.” The Bible is incredibly specific, and it is the most up-to-date book in the world! It is the reader’s responsibility to prove that for himself.

Mr. Armstrong certainly had his scoffers back in the late 1940s and ’50s, while he was writing and broadcasting that the smashed, divided Germany would rise again as head of a “United States of Europe” to be one of the most powerful blocs in the world. What was once ridiculed as outlandish prophecy is now being widely reported on as common news. And as Mr. Armstrong forecast, Europe will continue to grow even more powerful, consolidating into a group of the prophesied “10 kings” (or 10 nations) led by Germany in a modern, resurrected Holy Roman Empire.

The Forbes “Most Powerful People” list is an impressive appraisal of sheer individual—and by direct association national—power. Yet for this website, its assessment is entirely unsurprising. In many ways, it is “old news”—broadcast up to 80 years ago by our predecessor. Or further, as much as 2,500 years ago in the Bible. Forbes has simply highlighted the rising power of leaders and nations as they have been prophesied for decades.

One final note. Jesus Christ spoke to our terrifyingly destructive nuclear age today when He said in Matthew 24:21-22, 30:

For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be. And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened. … And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.

These nations whose leaders are featured on Forbes’s list are about to engage in the most brutal conflict of human history (see also Daniel 12:1; Jeremiah 30:7). We’ve already seen it on a smaller scale twice in the past century. There’s no doubt it can and will happen again. Yet there is coming a leader to end this conflict and finally take control of this embittered world. He will take the undisputed top spot of the “World’s Most Powerful” list. His name is Jesus Christ.

Transition Week: Obama Rushes to Regulate as Trump Slams the EU and Reaches Out to Britain

Transition Week: Obama Rushes to Regulate as Trump Slams the EU and Reaches Out to Britain

Olivier Douliery-Pool/Getty Images

Listen to the Trumpet Daily radio program that aired on January 16, 2017.

In 2008, Barack Obama promised to curb the power of the executive branch in the United States government. He’s now down to his last week in office and, contrary to his campaign promise, he’s exercising all the executive powers he can in order to protect his legacy.

Meanwhile, incoming President-elect Donald Trump is severing relations with the European Union and embracing Britain. On today’s show, Stephen Flurry explains what Bible prophecy says about the significance of these trends.

Listen to or download Trumpet Daily Radio Show on:

http://app.stitcher.com/browse/feed/68064/details

https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/trumpet-daily-radio-show/id1003885427

http://kpcg.fm/shows/trumpet-daily-radio-show