WorldWatch

 

France holds first military space exercise

France conducted its first military space exercise from March 8–11. Along with the space commands of Germany and the United States, the French Air Force’s space command simulated 18 threats against its satellites and assets, including missile launches, jamming attacks, solar radiation storms and debris falling to Earth.

The only other powers with military space programs are Russia and China. In large part due to the threat of these powers militarizing space, France is aiming to become the world’s third-largest space power and has shown plans to arm its satellites with machine-guns and lasers. The French government has said it hopes to avoid an arms race in space, but it may have already begun.

Denmark wants Muslims out

Denmark became the first European country to revoke the residency permits of Syrian refugees on March 1. This is part of a series of related events across Europe to restrict Muslim migrants.

Denmark claimed that Syria is now safe enough for the 94 refugees to return. This despite the decade-long, multi-sided conflict being nowhere near resolution and the Syrian government recently shelling a hospital in the rebel-held city of Aleppo.

The government is also planning a bill to limit the population of “non-Western” residents in its cities (those who are not originally from the European Union or the Schengen Area). The cap will likely be 30 percent. The original wording of the bill included the term “ghetto,” which in Danish law is defined as any neighborhood of more than 1,000 people with certain employment education, crime and income characteristics that is majority “non-Western” and that meets other criteria regarding employment, education, crime and income. Fifteen neighborhoods in Denmark currently meet the criteria.

These measures are being taken not in a right-wing nation by a right-wing government but in a Nordic-model Scandinavian state known for its welfare and other left-wing policies, and currently ruled by its center-left Social Democratic Party.

This is a sign that Europe as a whole is becoming much more right wing regarding immigration, especially Islamic immigration. Europe may be ending its experiment in multiculturalism.

Your Bible prophesies that Europe will soon embrace its historic culture, Catholicism—and clash culturally, politically, religiously and militarily with the Muslim Middle East.

The Whirlwind Prophecy,” (theTrumpet.com/go/whirl).

Fringe right wins again in Netherlands

During March 15–17 parliamentary elections in the Netherlands, center-right incumbent Prime Minister Mark Rutte won reelection. But its three hard-right parties also fared well, winning a historic-high 29 total seats.

Geert Wilders’s Party for Freedom won third place with 11 percent of the vote, the even more extreme Forum for Democracy won 5 percent of the vote, and the JA21 party received enough votes (2.4 percent) to send a representative to parliament for the first time. Together, the three parties earned 29 seats—the best results the hard right has ever had. During his election campaign, Wilders said he wants to see the Netherlands as “a country without headscarves.” His hard-line stance against Muslim immigration has pushed mainstream Dutch politics to the right so much that Politico describes it as “the Wilders effect.”

The Forum for Democracy has previously called for a ban on the Koran. Its leader, Thierry Baudet, once spoke of the Netherlands belonging to the “boreal world,” equivalent to the “Nordic” and “Aryan” race ideals once advocated by the Nazis.

French generals call for military to deal with Islamism

“The hour is grave; France is in jeopardy threatened by several mortal dangers,” an open letter addressed to French President Emmanuel Macron and his government begins. This letter, signed on April 21 by 20 former French generals and more than 1,500 members of the military, police and gendarmerie, calls on France’s leaders to “safeguard the nation” from Islamic threats.

“We can see that there is no more time to procrastinate,” it continues, “otherwise civil war will tomorrow put an end to this growing chaos, and the deaths, for which you will be responsible, will amount to thousands.”

Time is working against the government, and every incident adds pressure. Just days after the letter was signed, another terrorist fatally stabbed a woman in a police station in France.

Pushed by these radical Islamists, something of a medieval Holy Roman Empire mentality is rising in France. More and more people are ready for military conflict to safeguard their continent and historic roots. Just a few years ago, such a turn of events would have been unthinkable. Yet, the Bible prophesied of it millennia ago. Read The Holy Roman Empire in Prophecy to understand why.

Germany offers cash for change in Syria and Lebanon

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas pledged $2 billion in aid to Syria at a March 30 donor conference in Brussels, the largest sum Germany has pledged in four years. In return for the loan, Germany is requiring Syria to undergo “a substantial political process,” he said.

On April 7, Germany published a plan to rebuild downtown Beirut, the Lebanese port city devastated by an explosion in August 2020. The plan involves up to $3.6 billion in financing from the European Investment Bank and International Monetary Fund, the generation of 50,000 jobs, and private German companies rebuilding the port and its surroundings.

“This plan is not going to come without strings attached,” reported Euractiv, citing European diplomatic sources. “Germany and France want first to see a government in place committed to implementing reforms. There is no other way around it ….”

“For Germany, Syria’s revolution isn’t about a humanitarian crisis at all,” Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry explained in “How the Syrian Crisis Will End.” “It’s about geopolitics and how Berlin can aggressively advance its strategic interests in the Middle East!” (Trumpet, September 2012).

Germany and Europe are making a move to draw Syria and Lebanon out of Iran’s orbit.

Psalm 83 and Daniel 11:40 prophesy that Germany will form a Middle Eastern alliance against Iran. Both Lebanon and Syria will be part of it.

Request The King of the South, by Gerald Flurry.

Russia pulls Venezuela and Cuba deeper into its orbit

A high-level Russian delegation toured the Caribbean in March and April, signing a rash of cooperation agreements with Venezuela and Cuba, a sign of Russia’s deepening influence in the periphery of the United States.

On March 30, the delegation met with Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro and signed 12 major energy, finance, military and strategic agreements, as well as a plan for Russia to supply Venezuela with more coronavirus vaccine doses. The next day, the delegation conducted the 18th Session of the Cuba-Russia Intergovernmental Commission with the Cuban government in Havana and agreed to a plan to increase cooperation in energy, trade, agriculture, heath, defense and communications.

In recent years, the Kremlin has docked its warships in Havana’s harbor and given Cuba $50 million to buy Russian military equipment and modernize Cuban defense firms. It has also flown nuclear-capable bombers, a squadron of Russian soldiers and 38 tons of military equipment to Venezuela. And it has sold numerous tanks, patrol boats, missile corvettes and light fighters to Nicaragua. Watch for Russia to continue deepening its relationships with unstable, anti-U.S. countries led by socialist governments close to the U.S. mainland.

“The Bible contains many prophecies of [a] European power attacking America—and many other prophecies of America being besieged,” Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry writes in Isaiah’s End-Time Vision. He explains that Europe will carry out this besiegement in cooperation with Russia and China. “All of them are going to besiege America, Britain and the Jewish nation.”

Request your free copy of Isaiah’s End-Time Vision.

Iranian commander visits Iraq

Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (irgc) Brig. Gen. Esmaeil Qa’ani took a two-day trip to Iraq in early April, meeting with Iraqi officials and senior leaders of political parties and movements. The visit took place on the eve of negotiations between Iraq and the United States, including discussions about the presence of U.S. troops in Iraq.

Late irgc Quds Force Commander Qassem Suleimani’s main goal was to drive the U.S. out of the region. Qa’ani, his successor, has pledged to follow the same path. Since 2018, the U.S. has withdrawn from eight bases in Iraq and consolidated its forces to better protect itself from ongoing attacks.

Perhaps the main purpose of Qa’ani’s trip was to send a message highlighting Iran’s power in Iraq and threatening the U.S. Iran intends to control Iraq, and with the U.S. considering withdrawing its remaining troops, fulfillment of Iran’s goals in Iraq appear to be only one executive order away.

Putin to have longest rule since Peter the Great?

Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a law on April 5 that formally gives him the option to remain in power until 2036.

His second successive and fourth overall presidential term concludes in 2024. Under the previous constitution, he would have been required to step down at that time. But new legislation permits Putin, who turns 69 this year, to run for two more six-year terms, enabling him to remain in power for a total of 36 years, longer than Joseph Stalin or any Russian leader since Peter the Great in the 18th century.

“This world has a lot of authoritarian rulers. But Vladimir Putin is one we need to keep a particularly close eye on,” Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry wrote in his 2017 booklet The Prophesied ‘Prince of Russia.’ “His track record, his nationality and his ideology show that he is fulfilling a linchpin Bible prophecy. The time frame of his rule also shows that nobody else could be fulfilling the Ezekiel 38 and 39 prophecy.”

Order your free copy of The Prophesied ‘Prince of Russia.’

Biden’s message to the Taliban: ‘You won’

On April 14, Joe Biden announced that he will withdraw all American troops from Afghanistan by September 11, the 20th anniversary of the 2001 terrorist attacks. Following the news from Washington, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization stated that all nato troops will leave this year.

The withdrawal was announced last year under the Trump administration: It was scheduled to take place in June, pending the Taliban’s meeting certain conditions. Biden’s unilateral September withdrawal is apparently unconditional.

The U.S. currently has 2,500 troops in Afghanistan, in addition to counterterrorism forces. After spending more than $1.5 trillion, suffering more than 20,000 wounded, losing 2,400 servicemembers, and fighting for two decades in a war that has killed more than 100,000 people, the Americans are now leaving—with the Taliban still in control of half the country, the internationally recognized government controlling little more than the capital city, and the nation still poverty-stricken.

“It is not the right time to withdraw their troops,” Saifuddin Azizi, an Afghan commander, told the New York Times. “It is unreasonable, hasty and a betrayal to us. It pushes Afghanistan into another civil war. Afghanistan’s destiny will look like it did two decades ago.”

From Cuba to Vietnam to Iraq and beyond, America has been fighting wars against small Third World countries for decades and has won none of them.

News forecaster Herbert W. Armstrong knew this would be the case based on Bible prophecies like Leviticus 26:19-20: “And I will break the pride of your power; and I will make your heaven as iron, and your earth as brass: And your strength shall be spent in vain: for your land shall not yield her increase, neither shall the trees of the land yield their fruits.” The losing battle in Afghanistan is a stark fulfillment of this prophecy.

Read “America Has Won Its Last War.”

Record coal plant closures in U.S., EU offset by record openings in China

Global Energy Monitor published a report in April showing that a record number of coal-fired power plants in the United States and Europe were retired in 2020, but were more than offset by massive coal increases by China.

Even while Chinese leader Xi Jinping was calling for nations to pursue a “green recovery of the world economy” from the covid-induced global recession, his government commissioned 38.4 gigawatts of new coal plants throughout the year, 76 percent of the global total. New Chinese coal plants offset the record decreases in the rest of the world (37.8 gigawatts) and meant that the worldwide total amount of coal plant construction projects has actually increased over last year. Almost 9 out of every 10 new coal plant proposals globally come from China, completely ignoring its pledge under the 2016 Paris Agreement.

Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry discussed the Paris climate accord in 2017, writing: “What is happening here is not about the environment. It is about destroying the United States. The regulations this accord binds America to abide by, and the funding it obligates America to provide, accomplish that purpose very nicely.”

Read “What the Paris Climate Agreement Was Really About.”

Venezuela-style inflation may be coming to America

Venezuela’s economy is in a free fall. The Central Bank of Venezuela introduced a million-bolívar bill on March 5: It is only worth 53 United States cents.

Shortly after the U.S. Senate passed a $1.9 trillion spending measure ostensibly to combat coronavirus, Sen. Rand Paul noted Venezuela’s hyperinflation crisis and warned that the U.S. is on the same path. Citing the million-bolívar bill, he wrote, “Will U.S. be the next Venezuela with Congress borrowing over $6 trillion in one year?”

The late President Hugo Chávez’s socialist policies ruined Venezuela’s economy, prompting the government to raise revenue by printing banknotes. This caused the nation’s current hyperinflation crisis, and it is a warning to the rest of the world. Yet other governments are making the same mistakes, citing coronavirus as an extenuating circumstance.

Since the World Health Organization first declared covid-19 a health emergency, the U.S. Congress has approved over $4 trillion in coronavirus-relief packages and the Federal Reserve has pumped almost $6 trillion into the economy.

If Americans continue gorging themselves on debt, they will suffer the same outcome as Venezuelans are suffering now, Zimbabweans suffered in 2008, Yugoslavians suffered in 1994, Germans suffered in 1923, and has been suffered by all societies who reject a crucial biblical financial principle: “The rich ruleth over the poor, and the borrower is servant to the lender” (Proverbs 22:7). Soon, Americans may be using million-dollar bills that buy a sixth of a gallon of gasoline.