Muslim Brotherhood Wins Another Egyptian Election

Muslim Brotherhood Wins Another Egyptian Election

Khaled Desouki/AFP/Getty Images

The Brotherhood seems set to control both parliament and the presidency.

The Muslim Brotherhood candidate, Mohammed Morsi, has won enough votes in the first round of Egypt’s presidential elections to make it through to round two, according to partial election results.

The runoff elections will pit the two most popular candidates against each other on June 16-17, with the winner scheduled to be announced June 21. The preliminary results show Morsi’s rival to be Ahmed Shafiq, a member of former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak’s inner circle.

The Islamists already control Egypt’s parliament and constitutional committee. They seem very likely to take the presidency too.

This threatens to violently destabilize the Middle East.

Morsi’s campaign was launched by Egyptian cleric Safwat Higazi. Morsi sat in the front row of the rally,while Higazi told an enthusiastic crowd: “We can see how the dream of the Islamic caliphate is being realized, Allah willing, by Dr. Mohammed Morsi” (translation by memri).

“The capital of the caliphate … will be Jerusalem, Allah willing,” he said, as thousands cheered.

“Morsi will liberate Gaza tomorrow,” they cheered. “Millions of martyrs march toward Jerusalem,” ran another chant. “Come on, you lovers of martyrdom, you are all Hamas,” sang Higazi.

Russia’s state-owned press reported that Morsi told his supporters: “The Koran is our constitution, the prophet is our leader, jihad is our path, and death in the name of Allah is our goal.”

Shafiq isn’t much more moderate—just perhaps more pragmatic. During the election, he’s been boasting that he shot down two Israeli airplanes in the ’60s.

Egyptian public opinion about Israel means that a democratic Egypt will mean big changes for Israel. Ninety-seven percent of Egyptians see Israel as one of Egypt’s biggest threats. Sixty-one percent want to end the peace treaty.

Egypt is continuing to push toward radically changing the Middle East.

Global banking system getting ready to blow?

Remember the $2 billion derivative trading loss JP Morgan announced a little over two weeks ago?

It is getting bigger—a whole lot bigger according to a cnn report (May 20).

One thing seems clear about JP Morgan Chase’s $2 billion loss. It’s no longer $2 billion. It’s likely much higher.The number being bandied about now is closer to a range of $6 billion to $7 billion, according to several people working on trading desks that specialize in the derivatives JP Morgan Chase used to make its trades and from two sources with knowledge of the bank’s positions.

But there is also evidence that the bank’s losses may be set to get worse. According to the Independent, JP Morgan is in double trouble (May 22):

In a further blow, chairman and chief executive Jamie Dimon has suspended plans to use the U.S. bank’s own funds to buy back $15 billion worth of shares. Buybacks are a popular way for firms to use up cash sitting on the balance sheet and prop up the share price.

If the bank has to cut its buyback program, you know things are worse than its executives are letting on.

But as usa Watchdog’s Greg Hunter notes, the reason jpm Chase is losing so much money is because it isn’t really a bank anymore—it’s a hedge fund. And hedge funds risk their clients’ money betting on anything from the weather to who is going to get elected to the White House.

Here is the situation JP Morgan is in (op. cit.):

“Whatever the size was, it’s clearly not something that you can call one or two dealers and sell,” said Garth Friesen, a co-chief investment officer at avm, a derivatives hedge fund that’s not involved in these trades.As soon as it becomes clear that JP Morgan Chase is unwinding its position, it will be obvious to players on every major trading desk. Hedge funds will immediately start piling into that index and buying protection, driving up the bank’s losses.Until then, it won’t cost the hedge funds much to sit and wait.”There will be a stare-fest between the hedge funds and JP Morgan,” said James Rickards, former general counsel at Long-Term Capital Management, a hedge fund that required a $3.6 billion bailout from the Federal Reserve because of its massive losses from its trading activities.”It will cost JP Morgan an unimaginable fortune to push the spread back in their direction,” he added.

And here is the situation that U.S taxpayers are in (ibid):

For now, the one thing working in JP Morgan Chase’s favor is the market’s bet that the bank is too big to fail, making it dangerous [for government regulators] to push too hard on the other side of its trade.

So America faces a dilemma: If regulators push JP Morgan Chase too hard to unwind its trades, to prevent further losses and thus a potential taxpayer bailout, JP Morgan will get crushed by the market, which will jump in to exploit the situation, thus necessitating a taxpayer bailout.

America’s banking system has become a giant casino where everyone plays with money borrowed from other people, who have borrowed from other people, who have borrowed from other people. Since most banks have lent out far more money than they have in assets, if one player goes bankrupt, it could have a chain reaction that could destroy the whole financial system.

JP Morgan Chase looks like it could be in trouble. And JP Morgan Chase is perhaps the most prestigious and important bank in America.

U.S. Excludes Israel From War Drills in Jordan

The United States is leading the largest military drills the Middle East has seen in a decade, but Israel was not invited to participate. The multinational joint military exercise is currently underway in southern Jordan and is known as “Eager Lion 2012.”

The exercises, which are running from May 7 to May 30, teach soldiers how to coordinate ground, artillery and air attacks. The event has brought together more than 12,000 soldiers from 19 countries including Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Pakistan, Great Britain, France and the U.S.

However, the Pentagon has excluded one of the most significant countries in the Middle East: Israel. Although Israel has extensive security pacts with both Jordan and the United States, its military was not invited to participate in the war exercises. In part, this is because several Arab countries that are participating in the drills are technically still at war with the Jewish nation. The snub is also attributable to Washington tilting its foreign policy toward the Arabs and away from the Jews.

As the U.S. declines, it will leave Israel more isolated and more exposed to the rising tide of extremist Islam. Bible prophecy says the Jewish nation will respond to this vulnerability in a surprising way. Although Israeli leaders remember how Germany extinguished 6 million Jews only seven decades ago, the Bible says they will turn to Berlin for safety rather than trust their national security to God. This will lead to a catastrophic double cross that will prove even more deadly than the Holocaust. For more on what the Bible says about Israel’s future, request The United States and Britain in Prophecy and Hosea—Reaping the Whirlwind.

Leak: Euro Nations Creating Contingency Plans for Greek Eurozone Exit

Leak: Euro Nations Creating Contingency Plans for Greek Eurozone Exit

Aris Messinis/AFP/Getty Images

Germany ‘holding a gun to Greece’s head,’ says German paper.

Euro finance ministries have recommended that European Union nations draw up contingency plans for Greece leaving the eurozone, according to leaked statements. Both Greece and the European Commission denied the rumors.

Reuters said three officials told it the Eurogroup Working Group (ewg), a group of experts that advise eurozone finance ministers, agreed to send this advice at a teleconference meeting on May 21.

“The ewg agreed that each eurozone country should prepare a contingency plan, individually, for the potential consequences of a Greek exit from the euro,” Reuters quotes one official as saying.

Meanwhile, the Bundesbank said a Greece exit out of the eurozone would be tough but “manageable.” The bank called for the European Central Bank’s loans to Greece to be cut. The German financial paper Handelsblatt said the bank’s statement was like “holding a gun to Greece’s head.”

Reuters also reported: “Officials said that in addition to Italy and Finland, Germany, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Belgium, Austria and Slovakia have also either already started, or would soon start, drawing up contingency plans.”

Banks and large businesses are also reported to be putting together contingency plans.

Citi chief economist Willem Buiter said: “The elections (on June 17) will not produce a viable government that can follow the troika plan, leading to a stalemate between the Greek government and official creditors, and to the suspension of efsf-imf funding.” This would eventually lead to Greece leaving the eurozone in 2013.

Greece’s membership in the eurozone is simply not sustainable. Euro leaders may be able to prop it up a little longer, but Greece’s inevitable exit will be part of a chain of events that will completely change Europe.

The Way of a Christian

The Way of a Christian

PhotoDisc

Overcoming the sin of idleness and ease.

Most people associate sin with something you should not do. But few people ever stop to consider the words of the Apostle James: “Whoever, then, knows what is right to do and does not do it, that is a sin for him” (James 4:17, Moffatt translation; emphasis added throughout).

Are you one who frequently does not do what ought to be done? Then hear the words of God’s inspired Scriptures: If you know what is right to do, and don’t do it, that is sin!

The Price of Affluence

In his book Slouching Towards Gomorrah, Robert Bork attributes much of society’s decadent moral slide today to Western affluence.

“Affluence,” he wrote, “brings with it boredom. Of itself, it offers little but the ability to consume, and a life centered on consumption will appear, and be, devoid of meaning. Persons so afflicted will seek sensation as a palliative, and that today’s culture offers in abundance.”

There can be no doubt that life today is much easier than it was 50 years ago, even among the poor. We enjoy more conveniences than ever before. Likewise, our society offers much more entertainment and leisure than in generations past. Yet, paradoxically, there has also been a substantial increase in boredom and idleness. And the consequences, as Bork points out, have not been good.

During the last half of the 20th century, television surpassed printed material as our primary source of entertainment. Almost one half of our leisure time is now spent in front of the television. And, as a recent study pointed out, nearly 5 million Americans spend at least 40 hours a week—the equivalent of a full-time job—playing video games.

Television viewing and many other screen time pursuits, on the average, require little physical or mental effort. What they do require is time—something of which this spoiled and affluent society has plenty.

Over the past generation, we have drifted from a studious, organized, hard-working and diligent lifestyle to one of idleness and ease. Physically, we have also reaped the dividends of our affluence: Over two thirds of Americans over the age of 25 today are either overweight or obese.

One can still become quite educated today with a proper amount of self-discipline, but it’s easier and more stimulating to the senses to indulge in entertainment and leisure. One can still be quite healthy in this prosperous society, but it’s much easier to consume unhealthy foods that are easy to prepare and that taste good.

It’s a vicious cycle. Affluence affords us more time and money, which makes things easier on the average person. This easier lifestyle, as Bork said, “offers little but the ability to consume.” Our dietary consumption is not healthy, physically or mentally, which leads us to seek things even easier and more unhealthy. Like a deadly drug, idleness has put the “educated” masses in the Western world into the throes of addiction.

It is this attitude, this approach to living, which James labels as sinful. Heading down a path we know will be destructive and will end in ruin, and then doing nothing about it, is living in sin—it leads only to destruction and death.

The Sin of Omission

Herbert W. Armstrong often talked about two different kinds of sin: the sin of commission and the sin of omission. This second type is what James spoke of in chapter 4:17 and what Paul speaks of in Hebrews 2. If we don’t do what we should, Paul says what truth we have heard and learned will slip away.

A true Christian is an individual of action—not one who remains idle, waiting around for Jesus Christ to return.

Jesus Christ revealed this principle in the parable of the pounds. In Luke 19, after giving His 10 servants a pound each, Christ instructed them to do something with what they were given. Those who multiplied their pound were rewarded for their works. But the one who buried his pound and remained idle not only missed out on a tremendous reward, Christ even took away the pound he had!

We can actually fail to escape and lose out on salvation if we neglect doing what ought to be done (Hebrews 2:3).

No one can be saved without accepting the shed blood of Jesus Christ—that is true. But beyond that, God expects action. He expects change for the better. He expects us to be doers of His Word (Romans 2:13; James 1:22). He will not tolerate idleness or neglect. That is sin! Sin is not just avoiding those things we know to be wrong. It is also neglecting and failing to do what is right!

In Matthew 7:21, Jesus said, “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.” It takes more than just talk. It’s more than just saying you believe in Christ. He expects us to do! God will not harvest unfruitful trees. He expects us to produce fruit (verses 17-20).

The Abundant Life

Early in his life, Benjamin Franklin outlined 13 “moral virtues,” as he called them, and devised a plan to put each virtue into practice. Franklin understood the importance of resisting what was wrong and doing what was right. Study into the life of Abraham Lincoln and you will see that he practiced similar habits and met with similar success.

These men were determined to do something about their idleness. What about you? What distracts you from doing what you ought to do? What is the cause of your neglect? What leads you into the habit of idleness, of not doing what you should, whether it concerns your family, your work, your diet?

Great individuals of this world, even without the spiritual understanding of God’s Word, realize the extreme danger of living a life of idleness and ease. “What is man,” Shakespeare wrote in Hamlet, “if his chief good and market of his time be but to sleep and feed?”

The Bible is clear on the fact that those who are diligent about their business now will be rewarded greatly when Christ returns. But God also wants to bless us even now, in this life, if we are diligent. Jesus said, “I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly” (John 10:10).

In this thankless society, people rarely stop to consider the great wealth of blessings that have come upon them. But what a prosperous and abundant land Americans live in! If we spent all our time and energy on useful pursuits, what a successful people we would be! How much happier we would be if we would just determine to do what is right, no matter how we feel.

Jesus Christ came to give the truly abundant, happy life we all desire. But we must be willing to do what needs to be done to attain such abundant living. Resolve to do what ought to be done. And then, no matter how you feel, do it! If you do, happiness, joy, peace and abundance will follow.

The Muslim Vote Profoundly Changes Europe

The Muslim Vote Profoundly Changes Europe

Bertrand Guay/AFP/Getty Images

A political facet of Islam’s push against Europe

A study into the voting patterns that nudged François Hollande to victory in France’s May 6 presidential election reveals that his win—and the resulting rupture of the Franco-German axis that has defined Europe for decades—was overwhelmingly due to the Muslim vote.

During his campaign, Hollande courted France’s Muslim vote by offering an amnesty to all of the 400,000 illegal Muslim immigrants living in the country. He also pledged to revise French law to allow Muslim residents without French citizenship to vote in municipal elections.

On Election Day, these overtures paid Hollande rich dividends.

An unprecedented number of France’s Muslims—2 million—came out to vote. An astonishing 93 percent of these voted for Hollande, while only 7 percent voted for the incumbent, Nicolas Sarkozy. This means 1.7 million Muslim votes went to Hollande. And, since Hollande defeated Sarkozy by only 1.1 million votes in the election as a whole, it’s clear that the Muslim vote was one deciding factor placing Hollande in the Élysée Palace. Soeren Kern, senior fellow for European politics at the Strategic Studies Group, said, “The French vote marks the first time that Muslims have determined the outcome of a presidential election in a major Western European country.”

The fact that France was the nation where the Muslim vote brought about a sea change is important for two key reasons.

First, when it comes to immigration issues, France provides what Kern calls “a preview of things to come” for the rest of Europe. With 5 to 6 million Muslims, France is home to Europe’s largest Muslim population, and those numbers are expected to exponentially increase in the years ahead. As France’s politically active Muslim population grows, and as the majority of Muslims cast their vote for leftist and socialist parties, conservative parties will find it harder all the time to win elections in France.

Other European countries are experiencing similar influxes of Muslims immigrants, and could begin to see more elections tipped by the Islamic vote.

Also noteworthy is Hollande’s pledge to revise French law to allow Muslim residents without French citizenship to vote in municipal elections. Most Muslims in France—and in Europe as a whole—suffer higher levels of unemployment and live in lower-income households. These tendencies weld socialists and Muslims together in a power-dependence relationship—between the providers of welfare benefits and the providers of votes. For this reason, socialists like Hollande enact policies that increase Muslim immigration, which in turn creates more voters for socialist politicians.

The second reason it is noteworthy that France was the location of this Muslim political overthrow is because, for decades, Europe has been defined by the Franco-German leadership alliance. But, while conservative Sarkozy was submissive to Germany’s prescription of austerity measures to remedy the eurozone’s economic ailments, Socialist Hollande is overtly opposed to it. Instead, he believes “economic growth” fueled by incessant money printing is the solution to the financial crisis. For this reason, Hollande’s election represents a break in that Franco-German alliance.

This will ultimately bolster German strength and resolve. With the lynchpin Franco-German partnership effectively broken, German Chancellor Angela Merkel has begun making grand overtures to Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti. While France strove to position Germany as Europe’s economic engine but not at the political helm, Italy will be much more accommodating to Berlin’s leadership ambitions. The geopolitical romance now burgeoning between Germany and Italy will blossom into a partnership in the image and likeness of the old Berlin-Rome Axis of 1939.

Bible prophecy shows that, somewhat ironically, this new Italy-German balance of power in Europe that French Muslim voters helped create will ultimately crush the rising Islamist tide: “And at the time of the end shall the king of the south [radical Islam] push at him: and the king of the north [German-led Europe] shall come against him like a whirlwind …” (Daniel 11:40).

Radical Islam, under Iran’s sway, is already pushing against Western powers with increasing ferocity. The push is coming in the form of terrorist attacks, aggressive immigration into Europe, economic extortion, brazen defiance of international laws, human rights atrocities and more. And the success of French Muslims in tipping France away from Germany and toward self-destructive, Islam-embracing socialism represents a clear political manifestation of this “push.” That multifaceted push will continue to intensify until Europe—led by Germany with Rome’s unwavering support—reacts “like a whirlwind,” with a decimating blitzkrieg attack. So, French Muslims have bruised the EU’s Franco-German heel by electing Hollande, but Berlin and Rome will ultimately bruise Islam’s head.

To understand more details of the rapidly-approaching fulfillment of these prophecies, and how closely they connect to the best imaginable news, read Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry’s landmark booklet The King of the South.