Making Sense of America’s Bungled Response to Muslim Rage

Making Sense of America’s Bungled Response to Muslim Rage

RIZWAN TABASSUM/AFP/GettyImages

Daniel 11 isn’t the only Bible prophecy being fulfilled right now in the Middle East.

Over the past several years—and for good reason—we have constantly referred you to a prophecy in Daniel 11:40-43, an end-time prophecy that describes Iran’s aggressive and pushy foreign policy. We’ve also told you about the prophesied radicalization of Egypt, followed by Libya and Ethiopia.

In viewing America’s bungling response to Muslim rage over the past two weeks, another prophecy keeps coming to mind. In Isaiah 3:4, the prophet says “babes” will rule over our peoples in these latter days. Of course, God isn’t talking about actual adolescents occupying the White House. What He means is that the adults ruling our peoples today will lead like children.

Isaiah’s prophecy, like the one in Daniel 11, is being fulfilled before our eyes.

The day before Islamic radicals attacked the U.S. embassy in Egypt and murdered the American ambassador in Libya, the Washington Post revealed that during the course of his presidency, Barack Obama had skipped out on 56 percent of his daily intelligence briefings. According to the report, the president’s attendance was even less frequent in 2011 and 2012 than it was during the first two years of his presidency.

In other words, the deeper he gets into his presidency, the more his interest in foreign policy diminishes. That’s what we learned on September 10. The day after that, we have since learned, Ambassador Chris Stevens was visiting the terror-infested city of Benghazi, on the 11th anniversary of 9/11, with practically no security detail to protect him.

Amid the explosive events that followed this monumental lapse in security and intelligence, it’s easy to forget that the other big news on September 11, before we heard about Cairo and Benghazi, was President Obama’s refusal to meet with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu when he travels to America next week.

At first, the White House responded to the backlash of criticism by saying Israel never requested a meeting. Then it revised its position, saying President Obama couldn’t meet with Netanyahu because of a “scheduling conflict.”

Israeli officials fired back by saying Israel had requested a meeting in New York and suggested the prime minister could also meet the president in Washington. America’s most dependable ally in the Middle East was basically accusing the White House of lying.

At about this same time, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney blasted the Obama administration for its “disgraceful” response to the attacks in Cairo and Benghazi. While under attack, remember, Embassy Cairo had tweeted several statements that expressed sympathy for the Salafist mob that was outside the compound desecrating the U.S. flag.

Those embassy comments were later deleted after news broke about the deadly attack that followed in Benghazi. The Obama administration tried to distance itself from the embarrassing tweets by saying the statements hadn’t been cleared by the White House and did not reflect the views of the U.S. government. But this was hardly the first time a U.S. embassy had issued a statement condemning those who would offend Islam. In 2010, for example, after an unknown Florida pastor made a few headlines for burning Korans, the U.S. embassy in Pakistan expressed deep concern about the “deliberate attempts” of some who would “offend members of any religious or ethnic group.”

Before Chris Stevens was murdered, in fact, it had been standard protocol for the Obama administration, including its embassies around the world, to routinely apologize for offending Muslims. But after widespread outrage in the U.S. over the government’s feeble response to last week’s terrorist attacks, the White House immediately threw its Cairo Embassy under the bus and walked away.

This, however, didn’t stop the administration from continuing its policy of sympathizing with extremists, even justifying their anti-American violence. The violence was not a response to U.S. policy, the Obama administration or the American people, said White House press secretary Jay Carney. “It is in response to a video,” he said last Friday.

While he was saying that, anti-American violence was erupting all over the world. In Tunisia, Islamist protesters scaled the wall of the U.S. embassy compound, broke windows, started fires and raised the black flag of Al Qaeda over the embassy. In Sudan, a mob of 5,000 protesters marched right by Sudanese policemen and set the German Embassy on fire. In Lebanon, one person was killed, two wounded and a restaurant was set on fire during protests that coincided with Pope Benedict’s visit. In Yemen, the United States dispatched Marine reinforcements to fend off attacks. In London, 200 protesters burned American and Israeli flags outside the U.S. Embassy. And in Sydney, Muslim protesters were waving signs that read, “Behead all those who insult the prophet.”

The United States was under attack. And many news outlets even predicted the violent escalation ahead of time because when tensions are riding high in the world of Islam, the jihadists among them tend to riot after they leave their Friday worship services.

Yet, despite the prospect of widespread protests last Friday, it was business as usual in the Oval Office. President Obama met with the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic teams on the South Lawn, was interviewed by an entertainment magazine, participated in a photo shoot with a Spanish photographer and attended a campaign fundraising dinner that night. Meanwhile, his spokesman was desperately trying to convince Americans that these attacks were merely spontaneous demonstrations that had nothing at all to do with anti-Americanism.

Many Americans knew they were being lied to. They wanted answers. Who was responsible for the Benghazi attack? How did Libyan “protestors” obtain such a deadly arsenal of high-grade weapons? And why was security detail around Ambassador Stevens practically non-existent?

The State Department responded to these many questions and concerns by essentially telling reporters to stop asking questions!

Then there was the embarrassment on Sunday, when Libyan President Mohamed Yousef told cbs’s Face the Nation that he had “no doubt” that it was a terrorist attack in Benghazi and that it had been planned ahead of time.

That same hour, on abc’s This Week, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice told Jake Tapper that the attack was not premeditated. It was a “spontaneous” protest that was inspired by the violence in Cairo—which, of course, happened because of the video. The Benghazi “protest” was then “hijacked” by “clusters of extremists” and the whole thing just sort of “evolved” from there, Rice said.

On Tuesday, President Obama flew to New York for an interview with comedian David Letterman and to attend a ritzy fundraising event with hip-hop artists Beyonce and Jay-Z. In Washington, Jay Carney attempted to clarify the administration’s evolving position about Benghazi. Carney said the video was still the “precipitating factor” in all of the violent activity, but all the evidence had not yet been collected.

“I am not, unlike some others, going to prejudge the outcome of an investigation and categorically assert one way or the other what the motivations are or what happened exactly until that investigation is complete,” Carney said four days after he had categorically asserted that the video was solely to blame.

Yesterday, 10 days after Ambassador Stevens and three other Americans were murdered, the Obama administration finally admitted it was a terrorist attack—sort of.

“It is, I think, self evident that what happened in Benghazi was a terrorist attack,” Jay Carney said.

Last night, however, President Obama dialed that back several notches, saying the video was definitely used as an excuse for violence and that the investigation was still ongoing.

Meanwhile, evidence confirming what should have been self-evident 10 days ago is piling high. The attack in Benghazi was a premeditated strike on an ambassador who had been specifically targeted by Al Qaeda, cnn confirms. In fact, cbs News is now reporting that there wasn’t even an anti-American protest outside the Benghazi consulate on September 11. No hijacking. Just a 400-man army that attacked the U.S. consulate with high-grade weaponry.

cbs also says it is clear that the American public will not receive a detailed account of what happened in Benghazi until after the U.S. presidential election in November.

In the meantime, the pace of prophetic events will continue to accelerate. All across the Middle East, you see neon signs of America’s full-scale retreat. We took out Saddam and handed Iraq to Iran. Afghanistan will be served up next. We left Iranian protestors high and dry during the Green Revolution and then made the tragic mistake of enabling Islamic uprisings in Egypt and Libya. And we’ve totally abandoned Israel—the only Mideast nation, by the way, where there never seems to be any protests outside the U.S. Embassy.

As Charles Krauthammer recently said, the jihadists in the region are saying, “This is our time.”

And it is their time. Daniel 11:40-43 confirms it. But it’s all happening so incredibly fast because of another prophecy that highlights how naïve and childish America’s leadership would be in these latter days.

Millions Protest Austerity in Spain and Portugal

Millions Protest Austerity in Spain and Portugal

PATRICIA DE MELO MOREIRA/AFP/GettyImages

Tens of thousands of demonstrators rallied in Spain and Portugal on September 15, to protest their governments’ austerity measures. They came four days after around 1.5 million gathered in Barcelona calling for Catalonia to become independent from Spain.

The economic crisis is forcing both countries to make tough decisions. Portugal is changing social security contributions, raising the amount workers have to pay and lowering the amount companies pay. Employees’ contributions have risen from 11 percent to 18, while employers’ contributions have fallen from 25 percent to 18.

Many are outraged at losing 7 percent of their income. Organizers estimated that around 670,000 turned out to protest over 40 cities, but tv channel estimates put that figure considerably lower.

In Spain, media outlets estimated that at least 50,000 marched in Madrid, as the government struggles to avoid requesting a full bailout package. They have raised sales tax from 18 to 21 percent, cut eliminated bonuses for government workers and reduced unemployment benefits.

But the most discontent comes from Catalonia. The regional government in Catalonia is running out of money and needs a bailout from the government. The government, who can ill afford these bailouts, wants to place strict conditions on the regions receiving them. But Catalonia is a rich region that generates more than enough money to finance itself. It has to subsidize Spain’s poorer regions under the nation’s tax structure. They are outraged at having to submit to government conditions simply to get more of their own money back.

Catalonia’s leader, Artur Mas, wants the region to gain “fiscal sovereignty.”

The protests risk breaking open old wounds in Spain. Catalonia was on the losing side in the Spanish civil war in the 1930s.

Spain and Portugal are heading down the same road as Greece. The division and unrest will only get worse as the harsh reality of the financial crisis becomes clear.

Large-scale unrest helped bring dictators to power across the world in the 1930s. This domestic instability will transform into international instability. Continue to watch unrest in Europe closely.

German Army Advertises ‘Adventure Camps’ to Teens

German Army Advertises ‘Adventure Camps’ to Teens

Cotton Puryear

The German army has teamed up with a glitzy teen magazine to advertise “adventure camps” to German youth as it tries to persuade young people to join, now that conscription is no longer in force.

The magazine’s website shows young people enjoying the beach, playing volleyball and scrambling over rocks. The magazine, Bravo, is the army’s media partner in the camps, and the ads prominently feature on its homepage, www.bravo.de.

Children’s rights experts in Germany are outraged. “This misleading advertisement in youth media violates the principles of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, and the particular duty a government has to protect children,” said expert from Terre des Hommes, Ralf Willinger, reports Spiegel Online.

“The Bundeswehr’s advertising is becoming more intensive, both quantitatively and qualitatively,” he said.

The children’s rights activities quoted by Spiegel made clear that they believe any military recruiting aimed at children is wrong, so they would oppose the military’s participation in school career fairs in the UK and U.S.

The German army’s efforts to appear “cool” to young people are not surprising. Since the army ended conscription, its recruiting efforts have to be ratcheted up. The most promising targets for recruitment? Young people just turning 18, and trying to determine what to do with their lives.

But this news is still disturbing. From 1871 until 1945, Germany was, for the most part, a military state. The end of conscription is changing the much quieter role of the military has played since that time. Germany has never tried this before. The military is going through its greatest change in several generations. Watch for this type of recruiting to increase as the army grows to play a bigger role in German life.

Dramatic Rise in U.S. Obesity and Related Diseases

The number of obese adults is on course to dramatically increase in all 50 U.S. states over the next 20 years, according to a report published on Tuesday.

America’s current obesity rates range from Mississippi’s high of 34.9 percent to Colorado’s low of 20.7 percent, according to the latest data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. But the new report released by Trust for America’s Health said that, by 2030, Mississippi’s obesity rate will have swelled to 66.7 percent, and Colorado’s to 44.8 percent.

If obesity rates maintain their current trajectories, by 2030, 13 states could have adult obesity rates above 60 percent, 39 states could have rates above 50 percent, and all 50 states could have rates above 45 percent.

Estimates for the medical costs of treating America’s current adult obesity range from $147 billion to $210 billion per year. And the new report anticipates a dramatic increase in these costs, as well as in obesity-related disease rates.

But why is obesity such an epidemic in Anglo-Saxon nations, most particularly the U.S.? Obesity has swelled in inverse proportion to the reduced emphasis on physical activity in schools and communities. It is also surging in inverse relation to the decline of the traditional-family, home-based lifestyle.

Society’s dramatic loosening in standards of behavior, manners and morals has also removed shame from the equation. Once, obesity would have been viewed as a character problem and a weakness reflecting a lack of wholesome pride in appearance. But for so many people, those days are gone.

God inspired Moses to prophesy about this startlingly specific facet of the result of the Anglo-Saxon nations’ rebellion against Him: “Thou art waxen fat, thou art grown thick, thou art covered with fatness” (Deuteronomy 32:15). The Hebrew for the phrase “covered with fatness” means to be literally “covered with fat flesh.” The term thick comes from the Hebrew meaning “dense,” which can apply physically and intellectually.

To learn how you can avoid being a part of the intensifying obesity pandemic, read our article “Help Yourself to Radiant Health.”

Berlin Group: EU Needs Army and Super-President

Berlin Group: EU Needs Army and Super-President

Trumpet/PeskyMonkey/iStockphoto

The European Union needs a radical transformation into a superstate, according to proposals laid out by the EU’s most enthusiastic members. The creation of a European army, a single European president and a European border police force were among their most striking recommendations.

Formed at Germany’s behest, the group of foreign ministers from 11 member states met throughout the year and published their conclusions September 17. Calling themselves “the Future of Europe Group,” and sometimes known as the “Berlin club” or “Berlin group,” their suggestions to create a super-president over the whole EU were the subject of the July Trumpet magazine’s cover article.

Their suggestions for strong central government match what EU officials like Herman van Rompuy and Jose Manuel Barroso have been saying in recent weeks, and what the Trumpet has been writing for years.

But the biggest changes failed to receive unanimous support, underscoring one of their key conclusions: “In a realistic view, in the long-term treaty reform in a European Union of 28 or more member states will become more and more difficult.” Instead, they suggested a way for the bulk of the EU to move ahead while other nations refused or delayed ratification of the reforms.

The report also said while the group aimed for a “European Defense Policy” that coordinated weapons development, some members wanted to eventually form a European army.

Another striking proposal that also failed to receive the full support of the group was “the creation of a double-hatted post of president of the Commission and president of the European Council.”

“Such a merger would represent a massive shift of power into the hands of a single, unelected bureaucrat,” said Lord Stoddart when the suggestion was discussed in British papers earlier this year. “The government should be taking this far more seriously and voicing its objections very strongly.”

The bulk of the report focused on unifying the union and streamlining its decision-making process. The EU needs to gain power over national budgets, and economic policy coordination must become “more binding” in key areas, the report said. This would mean more EU intervention in things like unemployment benefit and pension systems—a key bone of contention as German workers resent bailing out countries whose workers retire before they do.

Other proposals would help the European Commission make decisions more quickly and raise the status of the European Parliament. Representatives from eurozone member states could meet separately, effectively creating a separate eurozone parliament, which could lead to a eurozone government. They also want the EU to play a more prominent role on the world stage, with the EU’s equivalent of a foreign office gaining more power. A “European Border Police” should also be created, to strengthen the unions external borders, it said.

Even their least radical proposals will be unacceptable to more Euroskeptic nations like Britain. This report “will prove hugely contentious and, if implemented, will increase the pressure on Britain to quit the EU,” wrote the left-leaning Guardian newspaper.

This Future of Europe Group is made up of the foreign ministers from Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Italy, Germany, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal and Spain.

It is clear that there is a core of EU nations ready to push toward a superstate regardless of what other nations want. Germany is leading the charge. Watch the formation of this superstate closely.

A Real Gentleman

It’s a rare species of humankind, currently bordering on extinction.
From the October 2012 Trumpet Print Edition

“He’s a real gentleman.” That’s a phrase I heard often during my childhood. More often than not, it was spoken by my mother, my grandmothers, my aunts, or even my elder sister, to identify a particular kind of Homo sapiens.

It’s a phrase not often heard these days.

I fear that the word gentleman has been throttled to death by the thought police. The feminist-dominated, politically correct movement hates what the very word bespeaks: virtueand manliness.

The typical English gentleman was the backbone of British society during the grand old empire’s glory days. In The Europeans, Italian-American journalist Luigi Barzini Jr. pointed out that men around the world sought to imitate the English gentleman, motivated and “dictated by admiration and envy.” The demeanor of the English, “well-educated, well-behaved … the result of good upbringing … their ease … made them admired models.”

But two world wars and the industrial society, compounded by the rise of feminism, largely did away with this remarkable example of virtuous manliness that the world at large sought to copy and that once was unique to British society.

American historian Gertrude Himmelfarb has reflected deeply about this increasingly unfashionable concept, the genteel Anglo-American. She notes, in relation to the historical usage of the term “gentleman,” that “In practice … it was often used, even in earlier centuries, as a distinction of character rather than of class” (The Demoralization of Society, emphasis added throughout).

Himmelfarb is the wife of the reputed founder of the neoconservative movement, Irving Kristol, and is recognized as an outstanding American historian. She traces one common denominator that once linked all classes in English society: “respectability.” Cutting through the liberal-socialist lie that the British—during their greatest epoch, the Victorian era—were closely strictured by class rigidities, Himmelfarb reveals that the reality at the time was that “the working classes were respectable members of society and therefore worthy citizens ….”

Victorian-era French historian Hippolyte Taine marveled at the genteelness and orderliness of the English. “‘I have seen whole families of the common people picnicking on the grass at Hyde Park; they neither pulled up nor damaged anything.’ This was truly admirable, he reflected, for ‘the aim of every society must be a state of affairs in which every man is his own constable, until at last none other is required’” (ibid).

Contrast this with British society today, with lager louts and ladettes besmirching public places with the effluence of their alcohol- and drug-debauched behavior, and young Britons considering senior citizens fair game for mugging. Every vestige of good English manners and proper decorum appears to have gone out the window, and there are statistics to prove it. “British teenagers are the worst behaved in Europe, a report has revealed. They are more likely to binge drink, take drugs, have sex at a young age and start fights. The report, from a think tank closely linked to Labor, says the collapse of family life is at least partly to blame” (Daily Mail, July 27, 2007).

“Partly to blame?” That surely must be the understatement of all time!

Why have the good graces of the Victorian era plunged into the 21st-century gutter?

Trace it to one common denominator: loss of gentlemanly deportment by British gentry. The male of the species has lost all respect for the God-given offices of husband and father, let alone responsible citizenship. As British society has lost respect for those biblically delineated roles, it has lost respect for family and, indeed, for fellow man. The result is social breakdown of national scope.

History records that where the typical male is a moral person, society thrives. When manhood becomes morally corrupt, that society soon fails. Though the woman may powerfully influence the order of the domestic scene, the moral standard of any successful culture is set by the male. Society rises and falls against his moral standard.

“A real ‘gentleman’ is truly a noble man,” Taine observed, “a man worthy to command, a … man of integrity, capable of exposing, even sacrificing himself for those he leads; not only a man of honor, but a conscientious man, in whom generous instincts have been confirmed by right thinking and who, acting rightly by nature, acts even more rightly from good principles” (ibid).

“What is a gentleman?” asked the 19th-century British author William Thackeray. “Is it to lead a pure life, to keep your honor virgin; to have the esteem of your fellow citizens, and the love of your fireside; to bear good fortune meekly; to suffer evil with constancy; and through evil or good to maintain truth always? Show me the happy man whose life exhibits these qualities, and him we will salute as gentleman, whatever his rank may be; show me the prince who possesses them, and he may be sure of our love and our loyalty” (The Four Georges).

Where, pray tell, would you find such a man in today’s society? Once a prevalent product of British society, admired by the world at large, the gentleman is almost extinct today. The link between that loss and the moral perils our society increasingly exhibits is undeniable.

May all true men of God strive to be such gentlemen!