Why We Cannot Win the War Against Terrorism

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Why We Cannot Win the War Against Terrorism

Human logic should show America and Britain that they can’t win the war against terrorism. But there is also a hidden reason why we can’t win—unless gigantic changes are made.
From the November 2003 Trumpet Print Edition

History teaches us some powerful lessons—if we are willing to learn. For example, history teaches us that we cannot win our war against terrorism. We can learn some essential lessons about our future through history.

History is a wonderful teacher. So we’ll start there. Then we can move on to a far greater teacher of why we can’t conquer terrorism unless massive changes are made—if it isn’t already too late!

The Root of Terrorism

The Iraq campaign is the latest round in America’s global war on terrorism. But where did all of this world terrorism begin? Iraq is a dangerous part of the equation, but it is not the head of the terrorist snake.

We must go back in history to see terrorism’s roots. It’s not enough to destroy the branches. We must pull the terrorist tree up by the roots. It’s the only way to win this war.

When Shah Mohammed Reza Pahlavi led Iran, he was a strong ally of America. But our liberal press and politicians thought he was too undemocratic, so they helped to drive him from power. As he was falling, America gave him little or no support.

Then, in 1979, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini overthrew the shah. Khomeini established Iran as the world’s number-one state sponsor of terrorism. When Khomeini died 10 years later, he was succeeded by Hashemi Rafsanjani, who intensified Iran’s international network of terrorism. It was only then that some observers began to see what a terrible mistake liberals had made in assisting the shah’s downfall.

Back in 1994, then-Secretary of State Warren Christopher called Iran “the world’s most significant state sponsor of terrorism.” How pathetic to make such a statement and do nothing about it! Just how much of a superpower is America? America has known for years who “the world’s most significant state sponsor of terrorism” is. But it lacks the will to deal with Iran—to hold Iran accountable for its terrorist acts of war!

In the 1990s, state-sponsored terrorism became deeply entrenched in Iran, and America’s leaders did almost nothing to combat it.

More than any other nation (apart from Iran), America is responsible for the overthrow of the shah and the ushering in of Ayatollah Khomeini. Our weakness could prove to be the biggest foreign-policy disaster of the 20th century!

How did it all happen?

We must understand how this relates to the present situation in Iraq. History shows how Islamic extremism can dramatically change the politics within a country, and it gives us an indication of the kind of power Iran could be very close to achieving.

Let’s look at Egypt, where Islamic extremism—which spawns terrorism—is gaining power at a frightening pace. There, one assassination turned the course of the entire Middle East!

Radical Changes in Egypt

A few years before the fall of the shah of Iran, Anwar al-Sadat was the warrior leader of Egypt and the Middle East. For example, he was the key leader of the Arab world in the Yom Kippur War against the Jews.

But, then the world was shocked—especially the Arab world. About the time Iran’s shah fell, Mr. Sadat was becoming an astounding Middle East peacemaker. He enraged the Arab radicals by speaking at the Jewish Knesset (their congress, or parliament). One man was literally swinging the Middle East toward peace with the West.

But Mr. Sadat was working against the tide of radical Islam.

It is interesting that the late Herbert W. Armstrong visited with two Egyptian presidents: Sadat and Hosni Mubarak. He gave both men a strong warning that we were not going to have peace until Allah, or God, gave it to us!

In 1981, Mike Wallace of the television program 60 Minutes interviewed Ayatollah Khomeini (who had come to power only two years before). He told the ayatollah that Sadat had called him a “lunatic.”

Almost immediately afterward, in just days, President Sadat was assassinated!

That is the kind of power the leader of radical Islam has! America and the world allowed this evil power to change history. Now terrorism is rampant around the world! America didn’t have the will to stop such state-sponsored madness.

When the Sadat assassination occurred, Mr. Armstrong said it was a turning point in Middle East history! And that was almost an understatement. But virtually nobody in the media saw—or they refused to see—what a world-changing event that was!

Iran’s terrorist network was working frighteningly well.

Mr. Sadat was in the process of changing the Middle East for the good of the world. He took a stand against many of his own people and the Arab world to make peace with Israel. He proved to be a truly great man by putting the interests of the world and Egypt above his personal safety. If the leaders of the U.S. and Britain had shown his courage, they would have dealt with Iran then. Because of U.S. weakness, the Middle East began to look to the king of terror for leadership. It all happened because of American, British and Israeli weakness.

Islamic radicals are very effective in assassinating top leaders. They probably also assassinated the speaker of Egypt’s parliament, Rifaat al-Mahgoub (the country’s second-ranking official at the time), in 1990. Gunmen on motorcycles sprayed his chauffeured sedan with automatic rifle fire. Radicals likely were behind the killing of Algeria’s President Mohammed Boudiaf in 1992. These are just a few examples of how Islamic extremism can influence Mideast politics.

President Mubarak, a moderate, could be assassinated just as Anwar el-Sadat was. This could implement another gigantic change in Egyptian politics, similar to what happened in Iran’s 1979 revolution.

Daniel 11:42 implies that Egypt will be allied with the king of the south, or Iran. (Request our free booklet The King of the South.) This prophecy indicates that there would be a radical change in Egyptian politics! It is happening before our eyes in this end time, and it is mainly because Iran’s “push” toward radicalism. But that pushy foreign policy is going to lead to its downfall, in a way that most people cannot imagine!

Iran’s Global Ambitions

A Stratfor intelligence brief dated August 22 explained that back in May, following what was seen as a decisive allied military victory in Iraq, the surrounding countries, including Saudi Arabia, Syria and Iran, saw the U.S. as the “ascendant power in the region” and recognized the need to accommodate U.S. demands. However, as events on the ground have changed since then, with stability in Iraq deteriorating, these nations now see things differently. The U.S. is no longer seen as being the ascendant force—it is seen as weak and needing help. This change will have the most impact on Iran, which has control over the Shiites in Iraq. As they see the U.S. becoming desperate, the Iranians will no longer feel the need to appease the U.S. (see article on p. 7).

Stratfor stated, “[I]f the Iranians start to believe that the situation in the region is out of control from the U.S. point of view, then either their price for keeping the lid on the Shiites will become astronomical or, more likely, they will decide not to bet on what they see as the losing horse. [I believe that Iran is more aggressive in this scenario than he does.]

“The situation in the region is, in our view, reaching the crisis stage for the United States. Things are going very wrong for the Bush administration. The threat of an Islamist rising from the Mediterranean to the Persian Gulf no longer is an interesting theoretical concept. [This influence and control would even extend beyond the Mediterranean, into North Africa.] Except for Jordan, it is becoming a reality. Under the circumstances, Jordan’s stability and security should not be assumed in the next year or so. If Iran—or native Iraqi leaders—send the Shiites into the streets, then all of Iraq will be in chaos, and a perfect storm will have formed.

“Our perception of the U.S. strategy has been that the basic assumption was that the United States has the time to let the guerrillas burn themselves out or that it has enough time to craft an effective strategy. We do not think that basic assumption is valid any longer. The collapse of the cease-fire between the Israelis and Palestinians creates a regional force that can be contained only by decisive U.S. action in Iraq” (Aug. 22; emphasis mine throughout). But decisive action in Iraq, without dealing with Iran, will not stop the terrorism.

The real power behind the Palestinians is Iran. No other nation would dare finance and blatantly encourage such terrorism in Israel. Iran has even been caught publicly sending enormous amounts of weapons to the Palestinians.

Just a couple of years ago, Israel captured a boatload of arms going to the Palestinian terrorists. Virtually the whole world knows what Iran is doing, and Israel’s terrorist problem keeps rapidly getting worse.

Israel is losing its war with the terrorists, and so will the U.S. and Britain. Such terrorism will tear any free society apart. Israel is a classic example.

The only way to win such a war is to deal with the main source of the terrorism, or cut off the head of the terrorist snake. But neither the U.S. nor Israel has the will to tackle Iran—even though it is the key part of the “axis of evil” in the Middle East.

President Bush labeled Iran, Iraq and North Korea the “axis of evil.” Iraq’s government has been toppled. However, we can’t win this war unless we also remove Iran’s leadership. But American and British leaders are overwhelmingly liberal. And the press is dangerously pacifist. Our peoples lack the will to win this war against terrorism.

President Bush’s labeling of the axis of evil was absolutely correct. However, he was attacked by the liberal politicians and press for that statement. That painfully illustrates America’s dangerous lack of will power.

Imagine what will happen in Iraq if Mr. Bush loses the 2004 election! And Iran is very much aware of the political scene in the U.S. and Britain.

Tony Blair’s government could easily fall over the Iraqi war. After such a display by Britain’s military in Iraq, the people should be embracing Mr. Blair. But the British (and American) people are too weak to fight a real war. We lack the will to win a bloody, protracted war.

The fruits and evidence of the past two decades overwhelmingly prove where the king of state-sponsored terrorism is! The whole world can see that. However, the solution to terrorism lies in doing something about it! We must confront the source. The terrorist movement flows from Iran.

Mr. Armstrong said over two decades ago that “America has won its last war.” He saw then that the pride in our military power had been broken!

The entire geographic area that Stratfor discusses is already strongly influenced by Iran. If Iraq falls to this terrorist nation, then Iran could virtually control this whole area—which contains most of the world’s oil!

A Nuclear Power

Now the situation gets even scarier.

Over a decade ago, the New York Times wrote, “Becoming second to Saudi Arabia as a world oil power, Iran expects to further its greater ambition of being the most important regional power in the Persian Gulf, a long-held foreign policy objective” (Nov. 7, 1992).

The article examined how Iran planned to achieve this objective: “More troubling to other countries in the area and to the West is the other side of Iran’s plan to achieve this objective: a huge rearmament program, financed largely by the new oil money.”

The Islamic Affairs Analyst of Gloucester, England, printed an article in August 1994 that said, “Iran is pursuing a parallel policy of surrounding Israel with implacable enemies. … Turkey is moving closer to Iran ….” Of course, the Shiites control Iran and are a majority (60 percent) in Iraq. This could be the decisive factor causing Iraq to fall under Iran’s control (see story, p. 7). In addition, “Starting at the foot of the Red Sea, Iran is set to increase its influence considerably in both Somalia and Yemen. …

“Further up the Red Sea coast, Sudan is already firmly in pro-Iranian hands with [Omar Hassan] al-Bashir’s military regime no more than a front for Hassan al-Tourabi’s Islamists. And it is from bases in Sudan that Islamist fundamentalists are beginning to undermine the stability of the newly independent Eritrea, which, it should be noted, now controls all of what was formerly Ethiopia’s Red Sea coastline.

“It is also from bases in Sudan that Iran has done so much to undermine the stability of the West’s most-important Arab ally: Egypt …” (ibid.).

Today, Iran has a frightening influence and control in North Africa as well as Afghanistan. Many moderate Arab nations fear, and are afraid to offend, Iran.

We have often drawn our readers’ attention to a front-page article in the European newspaper on May 7, 1992, “Iran Has N-Bomb,” which stated, “Iran has obtained at least two nuclear warheads out of a batch officially listed as ‘missing’ from the newly independent republic of Kazakhstan, formerly part of the Soviet Union.” Considering Iran’s aggressive foreign policy, this report certainly has the ring of truth. We can’t allow ourselves to be guided by wishful thinking. On top of this, Iran has had a nuclear program of its own for many years. This past year there have been information leaks that show Iran, while publicly stating that its program is purely for energy use, actually wants other nations to know it could be a nuclear threat.

Here is what the Islamic Affairs Analyst of May 13, 1992, said: “The main strategic aim of Iran is to dominate the Persian Gulf and environs. An important step in achieving this goal is to gain undisputed leadership of the radical Islamic camp.” Many of the good intelligence reports about Iran have proven true. Do we see just how powerful Iran is becoming militarily?

As far back as 1994, U.S.News & World Report gave some alarming facts as to just how widespread Iran’s influence was becoming: “[T]he government of President Hashemi Rafsanjani continues to bankroll Islamic militant groups in Lebanon, the West Bank and Gaza; Iran-backed terrorists operate in Europe, Latin America and Africa, intelligence agencies say” (Nov. 14, 1994).

And the U.S. “superpower” allows Iran to continue sponsoring violent terrorism!

The Push

The Washington Report on Middle East Affairs wrote the following shortly after the Gulf War: “The Iraq-Kuwait dispute exploded into a war which engaged nearly a million non-Iranian troops in the Gulf. Apparently the Iranians are calculating exactly how far they can push their neighbors …” (June 1993).

The stage is being set for an Islamic group of nations to be led by Iran as the prophesied king of the south, which will push at the king of the north, the European Union. “And at the time of the end shall the king of the south push at him: and the king of the north shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, and with horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter into the countries, and shall overflow and pass over” (Dan. 11:40). Let’s not forget that this is an end-time prophecy.

Iran has a foreign policy with a lot of “push.” And since the end of its war with Iraq in 1988, Iran has accumulated a massive arsenal of weapons to back up its aggressive foreign policy, and that arsenal includes chemical and biological weapons.

The king of the south, or Iran, is going to “push at him”—that is, the king of the north (the European Union). Gesenius’ Hebrew-Chaldee Lexicon says the word push means “to strike—used of horned animals,” or “to push with the horn.” It is “used figuratively of a victor who prostrates the nations before him.” It also means to wage war. Push is a violent word! This push no doubt revolves around Jerusalem and biblical Judah (called Israel today)—just as the clashes in the time of the Crusades did. That city is the third most holy city in the Islamic world. Pope John Paul ii has publicly talked of possibly moving the Roman Catholic Church headquarters there.

These two great and powerful religions both passionately desire Jerusalem. Most people believe the Israeli peace process and other similar negotiations are leading to peace. Actually they are leading to war!

The blatantly bold and aggressive foreign policy of Iran must lead to war. It will either conquer or be conquered. Bible prophecy makes it clear that Iran will be conquered—but not at the hand of America and Britain. These two countries are going to fall into catastrophic ruin before this prophecy is even fulfilled if they don’t wake up!

A new superpower is rising in the European Union. The Bible labels this conglomerate the king of the north. It takes one king to topple another king.

The time when Britain and America were superpowers, or kings, is history! And we need to understand why.

Can we see this new European superpower rising on the world scene now? Yes, we can. You can get a good insight into it by watching Germany and France. Britain and America defeated Germany in two world wars. Then they led the Germans in rebuilding their powerful nation—especially after World War ii. Britain and America saved France in both world wars.

France and Germany both have every reason to be close friends with America and Britain. But the opposite is true! Media headlines are showing us that daily. Believe it or not, God is raising up that European power to punish America and Britain if they don’t repent. (Request our free booklet Germany and the Holy Roman Empire.)

History Lessons Unlearned

Middle East peace treaties dominate the news—as all kinds of peace treaties did just before World War ii began! It is just another major sign that war is about to explode in the Middle East! And it will lead to World War iii.

Being spellbound by peace treaties has kept the Western world from fully seeing and recognizing Iran’s massive plot to control the Middle East. That will never be stopped by a peace treaty! Only a superior power could ever stop this extreme Islamic movement! The most precious jewel of Iran’s plan is toconquer Jerusalem. This would then galvanize the Islamic world behind Iran! They will go far in their ambition but never fully conquer Jerusalem.

How could I possibly know this? If Iran or radical Islam were to conquer Jerusalem, then we would look very ignorant. But your Bible says it will not happen. However, the Bible also states that another specific power will conquer Jerusalem.

Such statements should cause you to prove why we can make these prophetic statements and watch them come to pass—exactly as we said.You need to prove what we say—while there is time!

President Bush and Prime Minister Blair have courageously restricted Iran’s influence by toppling the governments of Afghanistan and Iraq. However, these are ongoing terrorist wars. We will still lose those wars if our nations don’t unite behind our leaders. That is almost certainly not going to happen.

Mr. Blair and Mr. Bush had the vision to see that our nations can’t win the war against terrorism without using our power!

Most of our politicians, the press and our universities do not understand terrorism—nor do they understand history! Winston Churchill said “the history of man is war.” Misinformed people like to believe that is not true.

Superpowers cannot survive in this evil, warring world without the will to wage long, hard wars. This is the real world in which we live; fantasies won’t change that reality.

In the 1930s, Winston Churchill warned Britain and America about Hitler. The politicians, media and educational institutions were overwhelmingly pacifist and against him (request our free booklet Winston S. Churchill: The Watchman). In fact, he stood alone among world leaders! And it almost cost us victory in World War ii! We have learned virtually nothing from Churchill’s warning. In fact, the pacifists have grown much stronger today.

We either wake up or lose World War iii! Any nation or bloc of nations that knocks off the number-one superpower becomes the number-one superpower! This is the lesson of human nature and of our history books. A superpower can’t run and hide.

Our leaders fail to understand history because they refuse to understand that evil human nature is within every individual on Earth—including you and me! (Jer. 17:9). For example, our refusal to use our military might is often not righteousness, as we like to believe, but despicable weakness resulting from our sins. We simply lack the faith, character and courage to fight against Iran, the number-one terrorist nation today. Unless we change our ways, we will prove too weak to survive!

The king of the south is about state-sponsored terrorism. That is how Iran became king! Daniel 11:40-43 is an end-time prophecy. It is about a nation that is always pushy in its foreign policy. It pushes until it starts a war. Having such power means that it must be a large oil-producing country. This king is close to Jerusalem, Egypt, Ethiopia and Libya.

Who else could it be in this end time but Iran?

Iran is extremely radical and the king over radical Islam. Where is it all leading? To war! Just as it has in the past. It’s leading to terrifying war with weapons of mass destruction. It can lead no place else.

A basic understanding of human nature and history should tell us that. All the wishful thinking in this world won’t stop that calamity—just as the pacifist dreamers of the 1930s didn’t stop Adolf Hitler!

History thunders for us to awaken.

The great Russian writer Fyodor Dostoyevsky feared Russian radicalism and what it would do to his country. Only days after he died, the tsar was killed and overthrown by radicals. Where did their radical movement lead? To Joseph Stalin and the spread of violent communism over much of the world.

So where is Iranian radical thinking leading Iran? To state-sponsored terrorism—which is going to trigger a nuclear World War iii! At this point, we have ample power to stop them but not the will.

We fear facing the origin of state-sponsored terrorism in the Middle East. We can never win the war against terrorism until we comprehend and deal with this reality. We can’t negotiate a victory. Only superior power, and the will to use it, can win. That is the only way to stop state-sponsored terrorism.

“And if ye will not yet for all this hearken unto me, then I will punish you seven times more for your sins. And I will break the pride of your power; and I will make your heaven as iron, and your earth as brass” (Lev. 26:18-19). The Prophet Daniel related that this is an end-time prophecy (Dan. 12:9; 9:12-14). Little Israel has more military might than Iran but fears to use it. The same is the case with Britain. And certainly that is true of America. But our nations fear to use their power—because of our sins. The “pride of [our] power” has been broken! We simply lack the will to sustain our war against terrorism.

We are fighting the terrorist war the way state-sponsored terrorists want to fight it—which means we can never win. They understand that they will win fighting the war their way. That is why they are waging this war of terror! Terrorist warfare would be a failure if we had the will to use our power against state-sponsored terrorism.

Nations must be held accountable and responsible for sponsoring terrorism. How dare any nation finance or support terrorism in another nation!

Most of the intelligence reports reveal that Saudi Arabia heavily finances terrorism in Israel (and even against the U.S.). Why? It is because Saudis fear the terrorists more than they fear the American “superpower! A real superpower simply would not allow such treachery.

It is an act of war to finance terrorists! The supporters of terrorism are more guilty than the terrorists. They make it all possible.

If America and Britain held the terrorist-supporting nations accountable, we would drain the terrorist swamp. They should be given one clear warning to stop. If they don’t, then strong action should be taken.

If the Iranian leadership were eliminated, the whole course of Mideast history would change radically for the better, because it is the king. Sadly, Bible prophecy reveals that will not happen.

Our ultimate success will be determined by our relationship with God. If God is for us, we can’t lose. But if God is against us, we can’t win. And Bible prophecy relates that God is against us and is cursing us. We should repent and become a true superpower!

After having toppled Saddam Hussein, America and Britain have a marvelous opportunity to pressure Iran. We have a huge country from which to operate, and it adjoins Iran. It would stand no chance against our massive power. Then we would have heavy influence over a large portion of the world’s oil.

Syria would quickly cave in if Iran were beaten or forced to stop supporting terrorism. So would other Islamic nations.

Instead, Syria and Iran see how divided we are at home. The Blair and Bush governments are near collapse—simply because they did have the will to use our power! The terrorist nations see our shameful division and are encouraged to support terrorism even more!

The pride in our power has been broken!

We must stop those powers that nurture terrorism. If we fail, our future is extremely black. On the other hand, the outcome could be the opposite. We could be a terror to any nation who dared sponsor terrorism against us and our allies. But those days are gone with the wind!

So brace yourself for a terrifying future, unless our people awaken.

All we have to do is look at Israel to see the outcome of our war in Iraq. Can Israel win its war against terrorism? It still acts decisively and with power. But the terrorism grows worse. Iran and other nations keep arming the endless stream of terrorists. The only way to turn it around is to stop Iran.

President Bush said that terrorist attacks come, not because of our strength, but because we are perceived to be weak. But it is more than a perception of weakness. We are weak. We must face reality if we are ever to correct that problem.

Iran and terrorists are preying on our weakness. State-sponsored terrorism exists because of our weakness!

But even if we don’t change our evil ways, this is all leading directly to the return of Jesus Christ. That is the best possible news this world could ever hear! This evil world of terrorism and war is about to end forever. It will soon be replaced by a world full of prosperity and peace. Then all mankind will understand and be fulfilling their incredible human potential.