He Was Right
Remember: Decades of accuracy in global forecasting
Many readers of the Philadelphia Trumpet newsmagazine tell us they recognize the same message the Plain Truth carried for 52 years under the direction of its founder, Herbert W. Armstrong. Subscribers even point to similarities between our style of writing and presentation compared to the Plain Truth in its heyday.
There is a reason for this—and it will be made plain in this publication.
Mr. Armstrong was one of the most prominent religious leaders of the 20th century. He was watched, read and followed by millions of people worldwide. At the time of his death in 1986, the newsmagazine he founded was produced in seven languages; global circulation peaked at 8.4 million. (By comparison, Time magazine’s circulation that year was 5.9 million.)
What happened to the Plain Truth? One example, in particular, will explain.
For more than five decades under Mr. Armstrong’s leadership, year in and year out the Plain Truth had powerfully and consistently shouted a warning in print about the revival and unification of Germany. It proclaimed that Germany would be the dominant force behind a powerful union of European nation-states that would surpass the Russian bloc and even Britain and America in power and hegemony. Imagine predicting that when Germany lay in rubble after World War ii. But that’s what the Plain Truth did.
Mr. Armstrong did not live to see the Berlin Wall breached on November 9, 1989, or Germany unite on October 3 a year later. By that time, however, an amazing thing had occurred—those who took over publishing the Plain Truth after Mr. Armstrong’s death in 1986 had totally changed its editorial policy!
Here is what the publishers of the “new look” Plain Truth said about that earth-shattering event in 1989: “Following the spectacular news about the opening of the Berlin Wall, we unexpectedly received a call from a news station in Seattle. The news director was well aware of the World Tomorrow program and the fact that for more than 40 years the Church had been predicting the reunification of Europe in some form. He asked for on-air comments about whether the Church believed the opening of the wall was the commencement of end-time prophetic events.
“We responded that it was premature to make statements like that ….
“The news director was disappointed that we would not proclaim this to be the absolute beginning of end-time events, but it was interesting that he did say that what the Church has predicted from the Bible was remarkably close to what appears to be happening” (Worldwide Church of God Pastor General’s Report, Nov. 21, 1989; emphasis added).
To long-time readers of the Plain Truth, such a weak assessment of the dramatic events surrounding the fall of the Berlin Wall was dumbfounding. The magazine had lost its vision, its reason for being! It was fast beginning to deny its editorial heritage of forecasting events boldly and outspokenly—based on the foundation of “a more sure word of prophecy” (2 Peter 1:19). Readership dropped off quickly. Soon the publishers were facing a financial crisis as subscribers’ donations disappeared. Readers and supporters of Mr. Armstrong’s flagship magazine decamped in droves.
At one time, those readers had a vision—a vision of reality that gave them a confidence in the future. Millions of Plain Truth readers who saw the Berlin Wall tumbling down via television news combed the pages of the Plain Truth in vain, searching for a perspective on the next event that would hasten the rise of the European power Mr. Armstrong had prophesied.
Many of those former Plain Truth readers are now among the hundreds of thousands who receive the Trumpet.
In 1990, we started the Trumpet with a shoestring budget, a handful of subscribers and one objective: to pick up where Mr. Armstrong left off.
In Revelation 10:11, God gave one of His servants a commission to “prophesy again.” That command, if you understand the context, reveals the need for the work we are doing today. Mr. Armstrong had a strong work of prophesying. But then that work was tragically dismantled—and God had to raise up another organization to do that work again. Our work is grounded in what God taught through Mr. Armstrong and what He is teaching today. We follow what Mr. Armstrong did, building on the understanding he had.
This publication is a look back at our roots. Our staff scoured through decades of old Plain Truth issues, looking for bold predictions. We then matched those prophetic statements with what actually happened, or is now happening, on the world scene.
The result was amazing. The sheer number of prophetic statements made by Mr. Armstrong and his editorial team, and their accuracy, will astound you. This booklet is by no means exhaustive. But it does pretty well encapsulate what the Plain Truth was about for more than 50 years.
It’s a remarkable history that is truly important to remember. This lengthy track record of accurate predictive analysis should build our faith in the certainty of biblical prophecy.
God has opened our understanding of these events in advance for several important reasons. It is up to us to take advantage of it.
Is a World Dictator About to Appear?
In February 1934, this headline gripped the attention of readers of the first edition of what was then the world’s newest current affairs magazine. Eight decades later, a review of the predictions made by the Plain Truth magazine and its founder, Herbert W. Armstrong, reveals startling accuracy in the magazine’s forecast of events that led to the modern-day European Union.
Of the myriad current events and numerous social, economic and religious trends the Trumpet magazine has covered since its first edition back in 1990, one ongoing, key occurrence has been given particular attention. This same occurrence headlined the first issue of the Plain Truth in February 1934. In fact, it is a news story that began unfolding back in 31 b.c. with the rise of the Roman Empire.
Since antiquity, the topography of the city of Rome has been famous for its seven hills. In an allegory associating these hills with seven successive revivals of the Roman Empire, the biblical book of Revelation speaks of “seven mountains, on which the woman sitteth. And there are seven kings: five are fallen, and one is, and the other is not yet come; and when he cometh, he must continue a short space” (Revelation 17:9-10).
Up to the early 1930s, when the Plain Truth was born, very few had a full understanding of the true meaning of this prophecy. But by the time Herbert Armstrong began publishing this extraordinary newsmagazine, the meaning had become inescapably clear to him.
Mr. Armstrong knew that God has delivered the message of Revelation not to hide, but rather “to shew … things which must shortly come to pass” (Revelation 1:1). Understanding this, Mr. Armstrong came to see that the five fallen “kings” in Revelation 17:10 symbolized the five revivals of the Roman Empire that had occurred up to that time under the guidance of the Roman Catholic Church. These five revivals of the Roman Empire were headed by Justinian, enthroned as emperor in a.d. 554; Charlemagne, crowned in a.d. 800; Otto the Great in a.d. 962; Charles v (commencing the Habsburg dynasty) in 1530; and Napoleon Bonaparte, who crowned himself emperor in 1804.
But the prophecy in Revelation 17:10 referred to one revival of the Roman Empire that would be in existence at the very time the mysterious vision of the book of Revelation would first come to be understood: “and one is.”
Herbert Armstrong came to see that the Italian dictator Benito Mussolini was that one that is, at that time, in the 1930s—prior to and during the onset of World War ii. (For a thorough explanation of this prophecy, request our free booklet Daniel Unsealed at Last.) In one of his final articles, which appeared in the Plain Truth magazine after his death, Mr. Armstrong reflected: “In 1929, Mussolini arranged a concordat with the papacy. Then about 1935, Mussolini, having united Ethiopia, Eritrea and Italian Somaliland to Italy, proclaimed it to be the reestablishment of the Roman Empire. I announced the news of this … restoration myself on radio at the time” (March 1986).
Mr. Armstrong also said the “one” that “is” included Adolf Hitler—in the Hitler-Mussolini axis (Plain Truth, October 1962).
In 1945, Allied forces defeated this weak sixth revival of the Roman Empire. Within the context of those seven kings of Revelation 17:9-10, that left just one final resurrection to rise up: “the other is not yet come.”
Keep in mind that Mr. Armstrong came to this understanding at least five years before hostilities broke out between the Axis powers and the Western Allies in 1939!
The Seventh ‘Holy’ Resurrection
Throughout the 52-year lifespan of the Plain Truth, Herbert Armstrong and the writers that served on his editorial staff pointed to events that were leading to the inevitable rise of a European federation. Before World War ii, Mr. Armstrong predicted it. During the heat of the Battle of Britain, he continued to forecast it. And when Germany lay defeated, crushed to smoldering dust by the onslaught of the Allies, he continued to proclaim the future resurrection of Germany—never wavering from his prediction that it was destined to lead a European combine. Right up to his final sermon, delivered toward the close of 1985, Herbert Armstrong continued to powerfully prophesy of these events.
As you read the following quote, consider the astounding vision of this man who, 80 years ago, predicted a major event that has become present-day reality:
“In February 1945—just a few months before the end of the war—President [Franklin] Roosevelt and Prime Minister [Winston] Churchill announced the joint American-British policy on Germany. This was the solemn policy and warning for the future. Listen. Quote: ‘It is our inflexible purpose to destroy German militarism and Nazism and to ensure Germany will never again be able to disturb the peace of the world. We are determined to disarm and disband all German armed forces; break up for all time the German General Staff that has repeatedly contrived the resurgence of German militarism ….’ And now, a short nine years later, behold the spectacle of Washington and London making every possible diplomatic effort, backed by American dollars, to do two things: Create a United States of Europe, and to rearm Germany. … Germany inevitably [will] emerge as the leader of a united Europe. It will require some spiritual binding force to inspire this confidence—to remove these fears—and that spiritual binding force must arise from inside Europe! All Europe is actually ready—just waiting for the confidence-inspiring leader …. That man is there somewhere” (Plain Truth, November-December 1954).
That was written less than 10 years after World War ii, when Germany was divided and still crushed from defeat. Europe was almost rebuilt (thanks to the massive aid of the U.S. Marshall Plan) but still disunited. Despite all appearances of the German nation at that time, Mr. Armstrong reiterated his prewar claims that a German revival would lead to a united Europe.
That excerpt contains the essence of one of the most powerful prophecies in the Bible. Mr. Armstrong repeatedly stressed that the prophecy revolves around three key points: 1) “Germany … as leader of a united Europe,“ 2) a “spiritual binding force,” and 3) a “confidence-inspiring leader.”
Mr. Armstrong wrote a letter to Plain Truth readers on July 24, 1983, in which he emphasized how long he had been proclaiming that same message: “The very first issue of the Plain Truth magazine appeared February 1934—just 50 years ago lacking about six months. The article starting on the cover page warned of a coming sudden appearance of a resurrected ‘Holy Roman Empire’ in Europe—a union of 10 nations in Europe under one government, with one united military force. For 50 years I have been crying out to the world the Bible prophecies of this coming ‘United States of Europe’—a new united superpower perhaps more powerful than either the Soviet Union or the United States!”
By the mid-1960s, signs of a remerging Germany were more abundant, but Europe’s only noticeable moves toward unification remained solely in the realms of trade and commerce. Yet, the Plain Truth said political unity would not be far behind. “[I]f 300 million Europeans were united and could speak with one voice, this would excel any might in the world today. … 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” (September 1967; emphasis added throughout).
Then in 1980, nine years before the Berlin Wall fell, Mr. Armstrong anticipated the building of the eastern leg of that European empire: “It now looks entirely feasible that Yugoslavia may be included in this revived Roman Empire. Also the pope’s native Poland and Romania, and possibly Hungary. Add Austria, Germany, Italy, Spain, Portugal and France. There will be a union of 10 nations in the general area of the medieval Roman Empire in the new united Europe. Probably Holland, Denmark, Norway and Sweden will not be included [in the final 10]. But Ireland may. Britain will not! … I have been forecasting this revived Roman Empire publicly since February 1934! Now it may go together suddenly, rapidly!” (co-worker letter, June 10, 1980).
We will examine the modern-day alignment of those nations that Mr. Armstrong predicted would join Europe, but first consider another vital element of his forecast.
A New Method of Domination
In World Wars i and ii, Germany and its allies had attempted to achieve global dominion by first conquering their European neighbors. In 1956, shortly after both of those German-led efforts had failed, Mr. Armstrong made a stunning prediction about a vital change Berlin would make in its next and final attempt: “[T]his time the [Germans] plan to sidestep the causes of past defeats. Instead of exhausting their own strength by holding European nations as captives at the expense of vital Gestapo manpower, they plan to head and dominate a united states of Europe—and add the manpower of those nations to their own military divisions” (June 1956).
Now, consider how the modern European bloc has come together.
The 1992 Maastricht Treaty extended the Common Market into a political and monetary union, exactly as Mr. Armstrong had prophesied. In 1993, the European Economic Community—then comprised of 12 nations— was given a new title: the European Union.
In 1999, under the headline “Germans Drive Toward United States of Europe,” the Weekly Telegraph reported that “Germany’s new red-green leadership has been unveiling its blueprint for a federal Europe built on the back of the newly launched euro. The moves will fuel euroskeptic fears that [the] monetary merger was merely a step on the road to a United States of Europe. … Germany wants to capitalize on the momentum of the euro’s birth to set Europe firmly on the road to a federal future” (Jan. 20-26, 1999). This development opened the way for an increase in German assertiveness.
By 2007, every single nation that Mr. Armstrong had predicted would join the European unification project—Austria, Poland, Hungary and Romania—was an EU member. By 2014, every nation that had emerged from Yugoslavia was either an EU member or under Europe’s control. These are the exact nations that Mr. Armstrong predicted would join Europe!
This is living prophecy—unbreakable, unchangeable prophecy of inevitable events that are now coming to pass right before your eyes!
Germany was, and remains, the primary force behind all of Europe’s moves toward federalization and expansion. But in order to dispel suspicions about Berlin having imperialist goals, the Germans generally pushed such moves and initiatives under a banner of striving for “the common good of the European Union.”
The Plain Truth of October 1976 explained this subterfuge: “West Germany has tried so hard for so long to bring about common community positions on one front after another. In addition, by always espousing the common European cause, she is less suspect of nationalistic motivations. After all, Word War ii is not that far in the past.”
But, since Germany’s first “baby boomer” chancellors—Gerhard Schröder and Angela Merkel—came to power, Berlin has been less preoccupied with trying to downplay its supremacy.
Now it is widely acknowledged that Germany is the most politically influential and economically powerful nation on the Continent. At the end of 2011, all of Europe looked to Germany for a solution to the euro crisis. Spiegel said, “Germany, admired and envied for its economic success, has become a model for Europe in the debt crisis. The Continent is becoming more German …” (Dec. 6, 2011).
Nicolas Sarkozy, France’s president at the time, said: “All my efforts are directed towards adapting France to a system that works: the German system.”
Spiegel mused, “In these days of crisis in Europe, the ‘German model’ has become something of a magic formula. Like it or not, the dusty, dry Germans now seem to hold the key to European salvation.”
At the same time, German elites were advising their people not to gloat over their return to imperial power, for fear of arousing resistance among neighboring nations. “German government advisers and commentators are warning Berlin against manifesting too triumphantly the openly erupting German domination over the EU …. Enraged Greeks are repeatedly recalling the period when their country was under Berlin’s control—under Nazi occupation” (German-Foreign-Policy.com, Dec. 1, 2011).
Not all Europeans are happy about Germany’s success in dominating Europe.
In late 2011, after Berlin and Brussels brought down the governments of Greece and Italy, Simon Heffer wrote in the Daily Mail that the world was witnessing “the economic colonization of Europe by stealth by the Germans.” He observed that, in the past, it would have “taken an invading military force to topple the leadership of a European nation. Today, it can be done through sheer economic pressure” (Nov. 8, 2011).
British politician and European parliamentarian Nigel Farage also recognized that Germany had used Europe’s economic crisis—itself engineered by German elites—to reshape Europe into a distinctly Germanic edifice. He gave a blistering speech at the time before the European Parliament, saying, “We are now living in a German-dominated Europe—something that the European project was actually supposed to stop—something that those that went before us actually paid a heavy price in blood to prevent.”
In March 2013, in the wake of Germany’s bailout of Cyprus, Charles Moore, the official biographer of Margaret Thatcher and former editor of the Daily Telegraph, wrote: “After victory in 1945, Churchill broadcast that Germany ‘lies prostrate before us.’ Today, most of southern Europe lies prostrate before Germany.”
That same month, Simon Heffer said, “The Fourth Reich is here without a shot being fired: and the rest of Europe, and the world, had better get used to it.”
From all this, it is clear that the power over Europe which Germany twice sought in the 20th century by armed aggression has, in this 21st century, become a reality. And besides the Kosovo War, it has happened almost bloodlessly!
The Germans did, indeed, “sidestep the causes of past defeats,” just as Mr. Armstrong predicted they would back in 1956! They have, indeed, come to “head and dominate a united states of Europe—and add the manpower of those nations to their own,” just as he prophesied! Germany is working toward the final resurrection by exactly the method Mr. Armstrong said it would. What a powerful testimony to the accuracy of his prophecies!
Heart, Core and Centerpiece
Consider this statement by Mr. Armstrong that appeared in the Plain Truth in June of 1952: “The United States is determined, now, to let nothing stand in the way of building up a rearmed, independent Germany. This will be the heart and core of the united Europe that will revive the Roman Empire.”
Europe has evolved spectacularly in the decades since that was written, predominantly by way of a progression of treaties between EU member nations. Chief among these was a literal European constitution (a German idea), called the Lisbon Treaty. Under it, the EU has a permanent presidency and its own diplomatic corps.
Modern Germany is, by a wide margin, the EU’s leading economy. It is the transit hub for waterborne and road freight for the European Union. Germany is also poised to control the energy crossroads between Europe and Russia. Frankfurt is home to the world’s most powerful bank, the European Central Bank. And the old German High Command—which the World War ii Allies swore would remain forever dismantled—has been assembled once again wearing new clothes and a new name, the Command Staff of the Armed Forces. It is the brains behind the development of a powerful, nuclear-armed European defense force.
Judicially, Germany is the only nation boasting a high court, the German Constitutional Court, whose power exceeds that of the European Court of Justice. The powers of the latter trump all judicial powers of the individual high courts of the other EU member nations. Then there’s the Financial Stability Board, another German idea, embraced by the G-20 group of nations as future regulator of the global economy. As a single bloc, the EU has the majority vote on that board.
How accurate Mr. Armstrong’s forecast was of Germany being the “heart and core of the united Europe”!
Those prescient words were paralleled with stunning accuracy in a 2009 statement by Philip Murphy, America’s ambassador to Germany. “Germany is the centerpiece of the European Union,” he said in Berlin on December 1 of that year. Unwittingly, the ambassador confirmed the prophetic words Herbert Armstrong had declared almost 60 years earlier, at a time when Germany was anything but the “centerpiece” of Europe.
How powerfully that prophecy has been fulfilled! This is living prophecy—unbreakable, unchangeable prophecy of inevitable events that are now coming to pass right before your eyes! The EU is now a literal European empire—the final resurrection of the old Holy Roman Empire—with Germany as its “centerpiece” and its “heart and core”!
A United Military Force
In 1996, a World War ii intelligence document was made public. It details a meeting between top German industrialists that was held in August 1944, a time when it was becoming clear to the Germans that they would likely lose the war. In the meeting they discussed how, in the event of defeat, they would go about resurrecting a German empire in a post-World War ii world. Several of Germany’s elite industries were represented, and were instructed to “prepare themselves to finance the Nazi Party, which would be forced to go underground,” according to the document.
By 1944, the Germans knew they would lose World War ii and were already planning for the next round! “Existing financial reserves in foreign countries,” the document says, “must be placed at the disposal of the party so that a strong German Empire can be created after the defeat.”
When the U.S. declassified this document, it received only sparse news coverage. Yet even more disturbing than the deep stupor of the media is the fact that the U.S. government did not make it public until 1996—over 50 years later!
With knowledge of that 1944 meeting in mind, consider what Herbert Armstrong said to his radio program listeners, May 9, 1945, during the inaugural conference of the United Nations:
“The war is over, in Europe—or is it? … Men plan, here, to preserve the peace of the world. What most do not know is that the Germans have their plans for winning the battle of the peace. Yes, I said battle of the peace. That’s a kind of battle we Americans don’t know. We know only one kind of war. We have never lost a war—that is, a military war; but we have never won a conference, where leaders of other nations outfox us in the battle for the peace.
“We don’t understand German thoroughness. From the very start of World War ii, they have considered the possibility of losing this second round, as they did the first—and they have carefully, methodically planned, in such eventuality, the third round—World War iii! Hitler has lost. This round of war, in Europe, is over. And the Nazis have now gone underground. … Now a Nazi underground is methodically planned. They plan to come back and to win on the third try.”
Mr. Armstrong reiterated that same warning numerous times right up until his death in 1986. Many who heard it dismissed it as a conspiracy theory. But in 1996—when that document was made public—it became inescapably clear that he was right! It had been happening exactly as Mr. Armstrong said!
Today, the expansionist spirit is manifesting itself in the military ambitions of the German-led European Union. As shown above, Germany has grown to become the most powerful economic and political force within the 28-nation combine of Europe. And Germany has also quietly built the foundation of a united European military force!
Under the Lisbon Treaty/EU constitution, the EU is empowered to develop a united military force supported by a consolidated European armaments industry.
And here is the vital detail of that arrangement: Germany’s Federal Constitutional Court has maneuvered to ensure that German law would override EU law, meaning Berlin has the final word on whether or not the German Army participates in any EU military operation. The remarkable upshot of this is that, now, Germany must give the “go” on any deployment of any EU battle group. Thus, the deployment of EU battle groups is essentially at the direction of the German High Command under German parliamentary approval!
In early 2013, the EU showed it is willing to flex its military muscle. In an article written at that time, Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry explained: “Germany has great power in Africa—even military power—that few people are paying attention to. Germany is not about to give that power up, certainly not without a fight. Why did France send 3,500 ground troops, fighter jets and armored vehicles into Mali in January and February to pound Islamist camps? The French just got out of the disastrous war in Libya helping America topple Qadhafi—surely they would have been hesitant to get involved in another conflict. But I imagine France—which is, after all, part of the European Union led by Germany—was strongly encouraged to go down there because the terrorists were getting closer to Germany’s strongholds” (Trumpet, April 2013).
This precedent means the path is now cleared for Germany to lead Europe forward to fulfill that vital part of Mr. Armstrong’s prophecy: a common military force that is as great or greater than that of Russia or the U.S.!
These facts strongly support the prophetic prediction made by Herbert Armstrong. But the fact remains that, in order for Germany to actually become a full-fledged military power once again, the nation needs a visionary leader. It needs a man who can rally the support of the German public.
A Confidence-Inspiring Leader
Bible prophecy makes clear that the final resurrection of the Holy Roman Empire will be led by a confidence-inspiring individual. Passages such as Daniel 8:23 make this clear. In 1953, Mr. Armstrong wrote about this individual, saying, “Without Germany, such a federation of nations is impossible. … [I]t is probable that none but a German can provide the dynamic, inspired leadership required to organize such a political military federation” (Good News, May 1953).
In 1956, Mr. Armstrong wrote that the Europeans were “thinking more and more about the coming United States of Europe! … [Europe is] going to unite against us! And now Europe is about ready for it! The stage is all set! All that’s lacking now is the strong leader—the coming fÜhrer! The Germans are coming back from the destruction of World War ii in breathtaking manner. Germany is the economic and military heart of Europe. Probably Germany will lead and dominate the coming United States of Europe.”
Just as Mr. Armstrong did, we at the Philadelphia Trumpet have long watched for a German strongman to enter the scene who will be the one to fulfill this pivotal prophetic role.
In 2009, a German with “dynamic, inspired” leadership qualities suddenly leaped into perspective. He appeared in the front line of German politics in February 2009 when he was appointed as the nation’s minister of economics. Then, just after Germany’s national election that September, Chancellor Merkel instantaneously quintupled his political stature by making him defense minister in her new coalition cabinet. This man is Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg.
We have watched his political progress with keen interest because of how closely his biography matches the Bible’s prophetic description, which Herbert Armstrong powerfully explained. Particularly noteworthy are Mr. Guttenberg’s family and his political connections.
His early development in political life was guided by Edmund Stoiber, a Catholic conservative who himself was groomed by Franz Josef Strauss, the famous German strongman who had grand designs for a united Europe led by a dominant Germany.
Guttenberg is also connected through part of his family line to the house of Habsburg. Strauss and Otto von Habsburg shared a common dream of a united Catholic Europe. Both personally shared details of that vision with Herbert Armstrong during visits they made to the campus of Ambassador College in Pasadena, California. Otto von Habsburg dreamed of reviving the Holy Roman Empire. Mr. Armstrong knew that dream was destined to become reality.
Take the young, aristocratic Guttenberg’s impeccable Frankish-Bavarian Roman Catholic connections into mind and add them to the thread of political thought that has pervaded Bavarian politics for decades under Strauss and Stoiber—the dream of a united Catholic Europe under German leadership. Add to that something that neither Strauss nor Stoiber ever possessed: a striking family title that cements all of these connections together. The sum of all this is a German man to watch.
What is that family title? Guttenberg’s official title—granted to his forebears during the 18th century—is Reichsfreiherr. The English translation is “Baron of the Holy Roman Empire.” That’s a fascinating title when you consider what is happening in Europe!
During his brief and controversial appointment as Germany’s defense minister, Guttenberg quickly enacted policies making it easier for the Bundeswehr to engage in combat in Afghanistan. He was the first German politician to officially use the formerly taboo word “war” when describing the conflict in Afghanistan. He was also instrumental in convincing the German public of the need for a more assertive and aggressive German military.
Guttenberg made clear that the engines of Germany’s military industry need to be stoked, and that there must be greater cooperation between the German government and its military industry. During a 2010 meeting at the World Economic Forum, Germany’s government launched what the Wall Street Journal called “an initiative to strengthen its military industry.” Top executives from large German companies and government leaders attended. During the meeting, Guttenberg spoke of the “necessary interplay of defense policy and Germany’s economic interests” (Jan. 31, 2010).
As a result, the German defense industry output grew by 60 percent in 2010! This was a two-pronged win for Germany: First, it escalated employment in the Fatherland; and, second, the profits flowed back to Germany from its fellow EU member nations (which are the largest buyers by far). Thus German industry grew rich at the expense of hugely indebted EU member nations.
That is a shocking development, particularly in light of the document showing that in August 1944 Nazi politicians met with German industrialists to plot the future resurrection of a German Empire!
Guttenberg’s shooting political star seemed to crash in March 2011, when he resigned from all political offices in the wake of a plagiarism scandal. Yet, within just eight months, he was back in the public spotlight, celebrated as a respected statesman at the Halifax International Security Forum. His wife’s return as a television celebrity in Germany was then announced, and shortly thereafter he released a bestselling book that quickly sold out in Germany.
Though he is avoiding public office for now, Guttenberg is maintaining a public image. He promotes his personality and politics widely but subtly, through diligent effort, meaningful projects and quality works. He writes thoughtful, articulate articles on key issues—articles that expose the weaknesses of opponents and sell himself as an intelligent politician with real solutions. Guttenberg weighs in on such issues as Germany’s national elections, the Syrian crisis and the need for greater German leadership in the world. In every case, his thoughts are insightful and infused with strength of opinion and leadership rare in today’s world. His goal is to be seen, but only as the solution and never as the problem.
During his political exile, Guttenberg has also maintained intimate relations with political friends and allies in Germany and beyond. He has kept his finger on the pulse of German politics and injected himself into all the major conversations in Berlin. He has held regular meetings, dinners and weekends with politicians, statesmen, journalists and businessmen from Berlin, Brussels and other world capitals, including a lengthy private meeting with Chancellor Merkel in Berlin in November 2013. Clearly, Guttenberg is no longer in Germany’s political doghouse.
The baron has often hinted at a return to politics, and we continue to watch to see whether this man fulfills Mr. Armstrong’s Bible-based prophecy of a rising powerful political leader destined to rule over a resurrected Holy Roman Empire.
Live the Drama!
In a sermon delivered on November 27, 1982, Herbert Armstrong referred to that first edition of the Plain Truth published in 1934. “I was rather astonished when I once again read what I had written there, very close to 50 years ago,” he said. “The heading is: ‘Is a World Dictator About to Appear?’”
He then quoted from the article. It says, “Everybody senses that something is wrong with the world, that some mighty event is about to occur. What is it? Bible prophecy tells! Here is a solemn warning and it is the plain truth!
“We live today in the most strenuous, anxious, momentous hours of the Earth’s history. Today we stand on the very threshold of colossal events that will stagger the mind of mortal man. Just now it is like the lull before a great and devastating storm. Everyone senses it! …
“It is commonly known today that Mussolini’s whole aim is to restore the ancient Roman Empire (that is, the resurrection of the Holy Roman Empire).”
In that sermon, Mr. Armstrong then commented, “He had conquered Ethiopia. He added that to Italian Somaliland (which he already had) and Eritrea and Italy; and had made a concordat with the Vatican. So once again there’s the union of church and state, although it wasn’t a real union; but he proclaimed he had renewed the Roman Empire. … It was ‘the beast that was, and is not, and yet is’ at that time,” quoting Revelation 17:8.
That 1934 article continued, “[T]he nations prepare even more feverishly for war!
“Three or four short years ago many laughed and scoffed when we said that there would be another world war in five to seven years. They do not laugh and scoff today. Everyone knows the next world war is coming, and soon.”
That war did come five years later—when World War ii began in 1939. Mr. Armstrong commented, “So once again the Plain Truth, even in its first issue, was way ahead of its time. It was predicting what was going to happen. People scoffed and said, ‘That’s a crackpot. He doesn’t know what he is talking about.’ But World War ii did happen. It did come.”
Herbert Armstrong spoke those words back in 1982. Since his death on January 16, 1986, many who even followed and supported him to that point have since turned away, calling him, as some did over 70 years ago before World War ii, “a crackpot”!
But the prophecies Mr. Armstrong published and broadcast to multiple millions over his 57-year ministry are smacking the gainsayers square in the face! Just as he prophesied World War ii ahead of its time, so he prophesied World War iii way ahead of its time, giving cogent detail of the conditions that would prevail in Europe just before that war explodes on the world scene.
He prophesied that Europe would unite under a resurgent German nation. It has.
He prophesied that a confidence-inspiring leader would arise to lead the seventh resurrection of the Holy Roman Empire on its final crusade. Europe is crying out for such a leader, and we may well have pinpointed his identity.
Mr. Armstrong prophesied that a spiritual binding force would draw Eastern Europe out of Soviet communism back into its spiritual fold and weld a united European economic, monetary, political and military force together as the final resurrection of the Holy Roman Empire. That prophecy was largely fulfilled as we entered the second decade of the 21st century with the EU constitutionally united as an imperialist power.
Even as you read this, the final elements of those great prophecies contained in the books of Daniel and Revelation are rapidly coming together. Not long ago, Europe’s unification was given little publicity by global press. Now daily headlines shout of fears of a dominant Germany and of its influence over the global financial system. Soon the world will feel that power extended onto the global scene—politically and militarily!
We at the Trumpet have the privileged job of publishing the great prophecies revealed through Herbert Armstrong and demonstrating their fulfillment through daily-occurring current world events.
The delay in fulfillment of end-time biblical prophecies was arrested at the death of Herbert Armstrong. His task was to declare them in advance. Ours is to warn of the present-day and immediate future reality of their actual, dramatic fulfillment! As our editor in chief noted in his booklet Prophesy Again, “This is living drama. God has given us many revelations about this commission to prophesy again.”
Now is the time to be tuned in to these many revelations and to really live this great prophetic drama!
The ‘Holy’ in the Holy Roman Empire
Many historians and analysts underestimate the role of the Roman Catholic Church in European history. Many also underestimate the extent of the Vatican’s involvement in the affairs of Europe and European countries today.
Herbert Armstrong never made this mistake.
We have seen how Mr. Armstrong for decades prophesied of the emergence in this end time of the seventh and final resurrection of the Holy Roman Empire. And though this globe-controlling “United States of Europe,” he warned, would be ruled by Germany, biblical prophecy points to the necessity of some additional power to glue the fractious nations of Europe together. After all, Daniel’s prophecy likened the final resurrection of the Holy Roman Empire to a brittle mix of iron and clay (Daniel 2:41-43). Matching Daniel 7 with Revelation 13 and 17, Mr. Armstrong understood that glue would be religion. Under God’s guidance, he linked these prophecies with history and came to see clearly that the deadly spiritual force guiding this European superstate would be the Vatican.
This Vatican is the “holy” in the term Holy Roman Empire.
“Europeans want their own united military power!” Mr. Armstrong wrote in August 1978. “They know that a political union of Europe would produce a third major world power, as strong as either the United States or the ussr—possibly stronger! … But they well know there is but one possibility of union in Europe—and that is through the Vatican” (Good News, Aug. 28, 1978; emphasis added throughout).
To members and co-workers he wrote on January 23, 1980: “What Russia is doing will be the spark to bring the heads of nations in Europe together with the Vatican to form a ‘United Nations of Europe.’ The politicians cannot do this by themselves. Only with the collaboration of the pope can they do it.”
“I have been proclaiming and writing ever since 1935 that the final one of the seven eras of 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!” he wrote in the January 1979 issue of the Plain Truth. “The nations of Europe have been striving to become reunited. They desire a common currency, a single combined military force, a single united government. They have made a start in the Common Market. They are now working toward a common currency. Yet, on a purely political basis, they have been totally unable to unite.
“In only one way can this resurrected Holy Roman Empire be brought to fruition—by the ‘good offices’ of the Vatican, uniting church and state once again, with the Vatican astride and ruling (Revelation 17:1-5).”
Herbert Armstrong and the Plain Truth continually made reference to Europe forming a church-state union under the auspices of the Vatican.
Drawing in Eastern Europe
During the Soviet era, the Plain Truth continued to encourage its readers to “[l]ook for the Vatican to exert more influence in European affairs. Yugoslavia and the Vatican have resumed full diplomatic relations—a move that could lead to further ties between the Vatican and Eastern Europe. … The pope, encouraging European political unity, stated, ‘We note with pleasure that the German government contributes actively to the achievement of this aim.’ Vatican influence over European affairs is destined to grow in the months ahead” (August-September 1970).
Perhaps the most impressive prophecy about the Vatican’s impact on European unification related to the persistent forecasts of the pope’s influence in drawing the Eastern European nations out of the old Soviet Union and into mother Europe’s lap.
Consider: “[W]e need to understand that the one great, overall, ultimate goal is the reuniting of all Christianity into one cohesive unit under one head—the Roman pontiff—in an attempt to bring to the world the Catholic concept of peace. This plan envisions the full use of the new Europe!” (Plain Truth, January 1963).
In respect of Eastern Europe, the Plain Truth declared that the papacy had its mind set on leading the diplomacy that would create the rapport between East and West Europe: “One of the biggest roles desired by the Vatican is that of mediator between East and West. … The Vatican, you can be sure, will continue to do its part in courting the Eastern European countries. Its Ostpolitik has been to bring them back into the ‘fold’ for a long time. And that is certainly the path it must continue to travel” (February 1972).
When Pope John Paul ii appeared on the scene, Mr. Armstrong made a far-sighted prediction: “The character, personality and actions of the Polish pope, John Paul ii, indicate more than possibly that he may be the pope to offer his good services to unite the nations of Europe once again. European nations want, seriously, to be united. Of themselves they are unable. John Paul ii could make it possible” (Good News, January 1980).
Throughout his papacy, Pope John Paul ii’s cry was for the whole of Europe to return to its roots.
On November 9, 1982, the pope, speaking on his pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela, Spain, issued the following declaration to Europe: “I, bishop of Rome and shepherd of the universal church, from Santiago, utter to you, Europe of the ages, a cry full of love: Find yourself again. Be yourself. Discover your origins, revive your roots. Return to those authentic values which made your history a glorious one and your presence so beneficent in the other continents. Rebuild your spiritual unity. … You can still be the guiding light of civilization.”
Remember Mr. Armstrong’s remarkable foresight indicating that the EU would break across the Soviet divide to build the eastern leg of the European Union, and that “John Paul ii could make it possible.” This prediction was borne out in an event involving the pope’s homeland, Poland. On January 9, 1998, the Associated Press reported how that nation’s Communist leader capitulated to the will of Rome: “Martial law had crushed the church-backed Solidarity labor movement, and Poland’s Communist rulers expected a chastened Pope John Paul ii ready for compromise when he visited his homeland in 1983.
“Instead, his voice rising, the pontiff lectured a surprised party chief, Gen. Wojciech Jaruzelski, as the nation watched on television. History would be his judge, the pope warned, demanding that union rights be restored for the Soviet bloc’s first free trade union [Solidarity].” In the face of this demand, Jaruzelski capitulated. The Vatican-funded Catholic Solidarity movement triumphed, and Poland broke the Communist yoke and then sought attachment to the European Union! The Vatican had driven a wedge underneath the Iron Curtain that was destined to crack it asunder and cause its total collapse!
The power of this papal diplomacy was recognized in a news release by abc correspondent Bill Blakemore: “Not only had John Paul ii ignited a nonviolent revolution when he first returned as pope in 1979, but by 1989 he had guided it with patient force till it won—the Polish Solidarity movement spread until the Berlin Wall came down and the Communists went away.
“Soviet Premier Gorbachev himself wrote later that John Paul’s philosophy and approach had ‘made a new kind of thinking possible for us all’” (June 18, 1999).
The Trumpet documented the continuing thrust of papal politics through the last decade of the 20th century on to the end of the first decade of the 21st as we witnessed the combined forces of Rome and Brussels/Berlin work to finally build the eastern leg of the resurrecting Holy Roman Empire. By the beginning of the next decade, that project was all but accomplished. Yet another of the powerful prophecies broadcast and published throughout the previous five decades by Herbert Armstrong had been fulfilled!
Though Mr. Armstrong did not live to see it happen, Europe’s East and West have been reunited, and in exactly the way he said it would be!
Poland and many other former Eastern bloc nations—Romania, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovakia and Croatia—have officially joined the European Union.
And still more powerful endorsements of Herbert Armstrong’s forecast that a “strong spiritual binding force” would emerge in Europe leaped into perspective after the death of John Paul ii.
Benedict XVI: Attempt at Cultural Unity
From the mid-1990s, the Trumpet eyed the German Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger as a potential replacement for the ailing John Paul ii. In April 2005, when he took to the papal throne under the name Benedict xvi, this became reality.
From the beginning of his papacy, Benedict xvi was bent on reasserting Roman Catholic relevance in the 21st century. And he attempted to do so with a hard-line, ultraconservative approach.
Benedict expelled liberals from the Vatican, leveled an attack against secularism in Europe, and resurrected use of the church’s ultraconservative Tridentine prayer book. In terms of Catholic doctrine, Benedict was uncompromising. He drew a firm line between Catholicism and all other denominations and religions, labeling them all “defective” and saying they should not even “be called churches.” He fiercely denounced same-sex relationships as a “manipulation of nature” that destroys “the essence of the human creature.” He often condemned “relativism” as one of the evils of our age.
But on February 28, 2013, some eight years into his papacy, Pope Benedict xvi did something totally unexpected: He resigned from the papal throne.
It was the first time a pope had resigned in nearly 600 years. It is possible the move was a response to the continued trend toward secularism and atheism within European nations. Perhaps Benedict’s hard-line, fiery approach, rather than unifying Europeans under a culture of conservative Catholicism, drove them away from the “mother” church. It certainly didn’t halt the rise in secularism; and the church under Benedict’s rule was definitely losing political and cultural relevance in Europe.
But the church did not give up on being an institution of relevance and power. In response, it regrouped, adapted and seems to have decided to try an approach quite the opposite of Benedict’s.
‘Like a Lamb’
On March 13, 2013, Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio was elected Benedict’s successor. The Argentinian Jesuit assumed the name Francis i, after Francis of Assisi—founder of the devout, humble and evangelistic Franciscan order of priests.
During his first year in office, Francis reached out to all religions, meeting with leaders from the Orthodox Church, Anglicans, Lutherans, Methodists, and also Jews, Muslims, Buddhists and Hindus. He has even extended the olive branch toward atheists and agnostics saying, “God forgives those who do not believe and do not seek faith.”
Francis made headlines all over the world after he appeared to cede ground on the defining battlefield of our time: “Who am I to judge them?” he said about homosexuals. “They’re our brothers.”
Whereas Benedict had often condemned “relativism,” Francis said there is no such thing as an “absolute truth.” While Benedict seemed never to pass up an opportunity to denounce the practice of abortion or use of contraception, Pope Francis said that “it is not necessary to talk about these issues all the time.”
The motifs of Francis’s papacy have been the importance of being more merciful and less condemning, and of assisting the poor. Francis also decided to forgo the papal limousine and luxurious apartments in the Apostolic Palace and to instead use a regular car and live in a small guesthouse apartment.
The results of Francis’s seemingly universalistic approach have been staggering. And they prove the ongoing accuracy of Mr. Armstrong’s prophecy!
A Vatican Spring?
“Suddenly, being a Catholic feels good,” Catholic author Cristina Odone wrote in the Telegraph on November 17, 2013. “I am so grateful to [Pope Francis] for making ‘Catholic’ a word that does not automatically conjure up thoughts of homophobia, sexism and pedophilia.”
Mrs. Odone is not the only one stricken with Francis fever. From the second Pope Francis walked out on the balcony in St. Peter’s Square, making gentle jokes and encouraging his audience to make a figurative pilgrimage with him, this man has been winning hearts.
He is the most discussed person on the Internet. Francesco, the Italian version of “Francis,” is suddenly Italy’s most popular name for baby boys. And he has won the respect of the media, evidenced most recently by Foreign Policy calling his the most impressive voice in the international arena, and by Time naming him Person of the Year for 2013. America’s oldest homosexual-rights magazine, the Advocate, even named him the “single most influential person of 2013 on the lives of lgbt people.”
From the time of his election in March 2013 until the end of the year, more than 6.6 million people attended events with Pope Francis at the Vatican—almost triple the number that former Pope Benedict drew in all of 2012.
Francis also spawned a dramatic surge in Catholic Church attendance in Italy, the United Kingdom, Spain, France and all Latin American nations. In some of these nations, the increase has been by as much as 20 percent. Many are calling it the “Francis effect.”
Francis has delighted Europe and the world with his modesty and gentleness, his seemingly inclusive overtures and his apparent desire to steer the curia away from absolutism and conservatism.
Perhaps the most amazing aspect of the Francis-led Catholic revival is this: If you examine what the pope has actually said, parsing the words carefully, you see that no traditional Catholic stance has been contradicted. He has only reiterated long-standing teachings of the church, yet, because of the words he used and the hype surrounding him, the secular media trumpeted his statements as a glorious sea change in Catholic dogma.
Francis is billed as the extemporaneous pope, happy to speak off the cuff about the church’s “new direction,” but his words actually seem carefully chosen to give the appearance of a newfound liberalism—something the progressive media can run with—without actually altering established church liturgy.
From the Vatican’s vantage point, it is the best of both worlds.
The Final Pope?
It’s too early to say whether Francis is spearheading a “Vatican spring” or whether he will be the pope to steer the church through the time just before the return of Jesus Christ. But it is undeniable that he is significantly improving the way Europeans and people all over the world think about the “mother” church. “They no longer sneer when I mention my faith,” Odone said about her secular European friends.
The final iteration of the Roman Catholic Church that is described in Bible prophecy, and which Mr. Armstrong wrote so prolifically about, may well have some secularist underpinnings.
In recent decades, the curia has already loosened some of its tenets in order to appeal to Europe’s growing number of secularists. The Church’s increasingly vague teachings allow room for the evolutionary theory to reside within the tent of Catholicism. Such measures show that the Vatican is willing to inject enough secularism and rationalism into its doctrine to appease modern people. It seems to be trying a blend of secularism and mystery—just enough of each to create a force modern people are willing to yield to.
Francis’s gentleness, his embrace of secularists and other inclusive gestures put him in a prime position to accelerate this blending tactic and to do what Catholic leaders have often done best: Assimilate the views of the masses into church teaching in order to “convert” those masses and lead them.
Bible prophecy says that, in the end time, the Roman Catholic Church’s leadership will appear to be gentle, sincere and “like a lamb” (Revelation 13:11). In many ways, this description fits Francis better than any recent pope. His lamb-like approach places the Vatican in an ideal position to continue the momentous European unification project that John Paul ii so successfully advanced during his pivotal papacy.
And we must not forget that Benedict xvi is still on the scene, or at least backstage. Perhaps the pope emeritus will make another grand appearance of some kind. Perhaps he will just remain behind the curtain and whisper some lines to Francis. We can’t be sure.
What we can be absolutely sure of is that the Vatican will continue working to win hearts, to sway European affairs and to position itself as the “spiritual binding force” prophesied by Herbert Armstrong to ultimately bind Europe together. We can be sure that the “mother” church will once again serve as the cultural glue enabling the restoration of the ancient Holy Roman Empire.
Bible prophecy makes it inescapably clear.
Returning to the Fold
Starting all the way back in the early 1930s, Herbert Armstrong spoke out about a coming unity between Catholics, Protestants and Orthodox.
Notice this excerpt from the October 1961 Plain Truth: “The pope will step in as the supreme unifying authority—the only one that can finally unite the differing nations of Europe. The iron jurisdiction over both schools and religion will be turned over to the Roman Catholic Church. Europe will go Roman Catholic! Protestantism will be absorbed into the ‘mother’ church—and totally abolished.”
Through the pages of the Plain Truth, Mr. Armstrong prophesied of this coming church unity. Notice, again: “The final—albeit short-lived—triumph of Catholicism is recorded in literally dozens of Bible prophecies. Right now—whether we want to believe it or not—the stage is being set for the greatest revolution in religion the world has witnessed. … The mighty problem of achieving unity is twofold. First, it involves reconciliation of the Orthodox Schism that officially commenced in 1054 and divided the churches in the East …. Second, it involves restoration to the Roman Communion all Protestantism which developed from 1517 onward” (November 1963).
The Vatican has broadcast the importance of its aim for unity for well over a century. Pope Leo xiii stated it in the opening comment of his June 29, 1896, encyclical to the church: “[N]o small share of our thoughts and of our care is devoted to our endeavor to bring back to the fold, placed under the guardianship of Jesus Christ, the chief Pastor of souls, sheep that have strayed. … [T]he most worthy of our chief consideration is unity. … We earnestly pray that He (‘the Father of Lights’) will graciously grant us the power of bringing conviction home to the minds of men” (Satis Cognitum [On the Unity of the Church]; emphasis added).
At that time Mr. Armstrong made those forecasts, reconciliation between Catholics and Protestants seemed impossible to most onlookers. In the 1930s, when a future church unity was being prophesied, nothing was further from the minds of Protestants. They would have said, “Unity? Never!” Injustices they had suffered at Catholic hands were still considered fresh wounds to most.
But today, some eight decades after Mr. Armstrong first broke that news to the world, we see the Anglican Church and Rome’s other Protestant daughters returning to the fold. And we see the Orthodox Schism being rapidly, almost supernaturally healed!
Early Steps Toward Unity
Catholic calls for unity garnered little attention from Protestants until the 1960s. Around that time, some of them began to take some tentative, gingerly steps toward the Catholic “mother” church. By the end of the 1960s, interfaith ecumenical prayer services had been held in practically every major city of the United States, and “pulpit switches” between priests and ministers were becoming widespread.
Anglicans and Catholics carried on private meetings with Lutherans throughout 1966. The Methodist Church also encouraged holding study groups together with Catholics.
In 1967, Catholics and Anglicans held an unprecedented joint service in Madrid at the British Embassy’s Church of St. George. The event caused some Protestant leaders at the time to seriously question the need for an ongoing Protestant movement. For example, Lutheran Bishop of Berlin Otto Dibelius said, “If the Catholic Church of 450 years ago had looked as it does today, there never would have been a Reformation.”
Likewise, Dr. Carl E. Braaten of Chicago’s Lutheran Theological Seminary concluded that it was becoming increasingly difficult to justify “a need for Protestantism as an independent movement.”
A decade later, for the first time in history, a pope visited the White House. The trip officially ended 200 years of estrangement between the U.S. government and the Vatican. While in the White House, Pope John Paul ii implored “all Christians—Catholic, Protestant, Anglican and Orthodox—to transcend our present and past differences on this occasion, and to mark the papal visit as a sign and stimulus for reconciliation … and to pray for the unity we seek.” In its December 1979 issue, the Plain Truth called it “an event unthinkable just two decades ago.”
In 1982, Pope John Paul ii traveled to England, Scotland and Wales. There he declared in London’s Roman Catholic Westminster Cathedral, “Today, for the first time in history, a bishop of Rome sets foot on English soil”—and said he prayed his visit would “serve the cause of Christian unity.“ He conducted a service with the archbishop of Canterbury in Canterbury Cathedral, headquarters of the Church of England. In his sermon, he appealed to his audience, which included millions watching on television, to be “praying and working for reconciliation and ecclesiastical unity.”
In 1998, the Vatican and the Lutheran World Federation—which represents a majority of Lutherans worldwide, some 70.3 million believers—affirmed that Roman Catholics and Lutherans share a basic understanding. New York Times called the event “a triumph for supporters of the ecumenical movement, which has urged closer cooperation among churches” (June 26, 1998).
Pope John Paul ii undertook enormous effort to promote unity. He was the most traveled pope in history. During the 27 years of his papacy, he visited no fewer than 127 countries, many of them multiple times. All this travel was one clear sign of the pope’s tremendous effort to offer the olive branch to Catholicism’s protesting, or Protestant, daughter churches.
Yet as successful as John Paul was in his life’s work of bringing Catholics and Anglicans together, it was his death that ushered in a new phase of rapid reconciliation.
Out of Many—One
With an estimated 4 million mourners paying their respects in Rome, John Paul ii’s funeral is believed to have been the largest single gathering of Christianity in history. It rallied together what was, at the time, the largest gathering in history of heads of state (besides United Nations meetings), even surpassing the 1965 funeral of Winston Churchill. Among the attendees were four kings, five queens, 70 prime ministers and presidents, and 15 or more leaders of other religions.
Among these was Rowan Williams, archbishop of Canterbury, who became the first Anglican leader in history to attend a pope’s funeral. Williams called John Paul ii “one of the very greatest” Christian leaders of the 20th century. The Australian said his decision to attend the funeral signaled that “the rift between Anglicans and Catholics stemming from the Reformation could finally be healed …” (April 12, 2005).
John Paul ii’s death swept Protestant churches up in the euphoria of papal adulation. This frenzy prompted the Guardian to print the headline “It’s as if the Reformation Had Never Happened.”
John Paul ii’s successor, Pope Benedict xvi, sought to capitalize on the euphoric sentiments resulting from John Paul’s death, and from the start of his papacy said his “primary task” was to unify all Christians. However, though his goal was the same as John Paul’s, his approach toward achieving it was decidedly less diplomatic.
In 2007, the “mother” church restated the doctrines of “Dominus Iesus,” a document Benedict had signed in 2000, saying non-Catholics were “gravely deficient,” and that Protestant churches are “not churches in the proper sense.” The restatement also said Orthodox churches suffer from a “wound” because of their failure to accept the pope’s authority.
In October 2009, Pope Benedict made this historic offer to all of the “gravely deficient” Anglicans: Any who wished to could retain their Anglican practices, yet be granted membership in the Roman Church, and any married Anglican clergy could be accepted as priests in a newly established Catholic/Anglican community. The offer was attractive to the numerous Anglicans who had been angered by their church’s increasingly liberal stance on issues such as the ordination of female clergy and homosexual priests. Around 900 Anglicans, including 61 clergy, entered the Catholic Church during a special service on Easter in 2011, and defections have steadily gained momentum since then.
Around that time, a convert from Lutheranism named Tim Drake, who now works as a prominent Catholic journalist and radio host, wrote an article for the National Catholic Register titled “The Lutheran Landslide.” He said: “One of the most underreported religious stories of the past decade has been the movement of Lutherans across the Tiber. What first began with prominent Lutherans, such as Richard John Neuhaus (1990) and Robert Wilken (1994), coming into the Catholic Church, has become more of a landslide that could culminate in a larger body of Lutherans coming into the [church] collectively” (March 25, 2011).
In October of that year, Benedict ushered in another historic change. Back in 1701, the Act of Settlement had been enshrined into British law, forbidding the monarch from marrying a Catholic. Benedict applied some pressure. And without putting up any semblance of resistance, the British scrapped the centuries-old law.
The next great victory in the “mother” church’s goal of re-assimilating the Protestants came in January 2013. That month, the Catholic Church and several large Protestant churches signed an agreement to recognize baptisms performed by each other. In March of that year, Justin Welby became the archbishop of Canterbury. With strong links to the Catholic Church, and as a leader of the Anglican Communion, he has been instrumental in continuing to bring Anglicans closer to Rome.
Also in March 2013, Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio became Pope Francis. He wasted no time at passionately working toward “full communion” with the Anglican Church, a euphemistic way of describing the abolition of Anglicanism by assimilation.
In June 2014, during his second meeting with Welby, Francis made a shocking statement: “We … feel ashamed when we ponder the distance between the Lord’s call and our meager response. Beneath His merciful gaze, we cannot claim that our division is anything less than a scandal and an obstacle to our proclaiming the gospel of salvation to the world. … The goal of full unity may seem distant indeed, yet it remains the aim which should direct our every step along the way.”
Welby’s reply was no less stunning: “I am profoundly grateful for … your passion for reconciliation,” he said. “I have sought to imitate … [y]our apostolic exhortation ….” These are the words of a man eager to steer his church back into the Catholic fold.
Healing the Schism
The Catholic Church has also long desired to restore its influence over the Eastern Orthodox Church, which split from Rome in the Great Schism of 1054. As in the case of the Protestants, in recent years Catholic leaders have been making great strides toward that end.
In 1964, Pope Paul vi and Eastern Orthodox Patriarch Athenagoras i met and expressed regret at the “reprehensible gestures” of the Great Schism. Those gestures were the excommunications that both groups served one another, and the two leaders rendered these excommunications null and void during their meeting. It was a massive step toward unifying the two faiths.
The next step came in November of 1979 when John Paul ii made a historic three-day visit to Turkey. He held a summit with Greek Orthodox Patriarch Demetrios i, stating a resolute determination to end the “intolerable scandal” of divisions within the Christian-professing world.
In 2000, John Paul mapped out a deal with Orthodox leaders aimed at ending that “scandal” by establishing the primacy of the pope over Orthodox bishops. But the deal stalled, and John Paul did not live to see it come to fruition.
A year after John Paul’s death, Pope Benedict made global headlines after deciding to drop “patriarch of the West” from his list of official titles. Why? The Eastern Orthodox synod said the move implied that the Catholic Church still sought “universal jurisdiction of the bishop of Rome over the entire church.” The pope retained the titles “vicar of Christ” and “supreme pontiff of the universal church.” He cast off the title “patriarch of the West” not because it gave him too much jurisdiction, but not enough.
In November 2006, Benedict traveled to Istanbul for a meeting with Bartholomew i, head of the Orthodox Church. There, he reiterated the words of his predecessor, saying, “The divisions which exist among Christians are a scandal to the world.”
In October 2007, Benedict and Orthodox leaders resurrected the deal that John Paul had initiated years earlier. They came to an agreement that established the primacy of the pope over all Catholic and Orthodox bishops—though some disagreement remains over exactly what authority that grants the Catholic leader.
As significant as Pope Benedict’s strides toward Orthodox reconciliation were, however, they proved to be just an opening act for his successor, Pope Francis i.
Before becoming pope, Francis became expert in merging Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox practices. According to the Associated Press, “Francis is familiar with Orthodox traditions from 14 years of heading the Argentine church’s commission on Eastern Rite Christians, which is within the Catholic fold but follows Orthodox religious customs, including some married clergy in lower ranks.”
At Francis’s behest, Bartholomew traveled to Rome in March 2013 to personally attend the new pope’s installation ceremony. The event was presented in the media as something that hadn’t happened for a millennium, since the Great Schism divided Christian East from Christian West. But Vatican experts believe it was actually the first time in history that a bishop of Constantinople attended the installation of a bishop of Rome. George Demacopoulos of the Orthodox Christian Studies Center at Fordham University called it “an extraordinary event in the history of Christianity” and “a powerful symbolic gesture for the cause of Christian unity.” Francis responded to Bartholomew’s grand gesture with something else totally unprecedented: He had the reading of the Gospel at his installation ceremony sung in Greek, instead of Latin.
In May 2014, Francis undertook a two-day trip through the Middle East that coincided with a visit to the area by Bartholomew. The two held a meeting with the motto “So that they may be one,” accompanied by a logo depicting an embrace between St. Peter and St. Andrew—the patrons of the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches.
Since then, Francis and Bartholomew have continued calling each other “brother Peter” and “brother Andrew,” and have kept working toward unity. But what sort of unity can be expected to spring from the steps of reconciliation? Will it be a meet-in-the-middle-type of reconciliation? Or are we about to see a more profound reunification?
True Unity on the Horizon
For now, the Vatican is willing to compromise to draw in its daughters. But that won’t always be so. As Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry wrote in May 2007, “Indeed, biblical prophecy indicates that full unity will not be achieved purely voluntarily. At a certain point, the mother church will abandon its efforts to woo her daughters back by flatteries and instead revert to the age-old method of preserving ‘Christian’ unity by exerting physical force.”
In the end, this coming reconciliation between the Vatican and its protesting daughters will not usher in the peace mankind so desperately desires: just the opposite! It will bring about the fulfillment of the great prophecies of Revelation 13. These prophecies speak of a universalist religion that imposes its will upon the Earth with crusading power. It will enforce a social contract that dictates not only who will work but who will eat! (Revelation 13:16-17).
For well over 50 years, Herbert Armstrong prophesied of this great religious power and its coming global dominance. But he looked beyond the great time of trial this religious power and the empire it leads will bring to this world. He prophesied of another empire—an empire that will soon overcome all other imperial and religious forces to finally impose justice on all mankind—the very Kingdom of God under the divine rule of the Author of pure religion, the living Jesus Christ!
Stoking the Furnace of the War Machine
The industries that equipped Germany for world war are back in business.
“We don’t understand German thoroughness,” Herbert Armstrong said to an audience of World Tomorrow listeners in 1945. “From the very start of World War ii, they have considered the possibility of losing this second round, as they did the first—and they have carefully, methodically planned, in such eventuality, the third round—World War iii!”
Mr. Armstrong explained that the primary tool Germany was using to revive the nation’s empire was its cutting edge, world-class industry.
In 1953, Mr. Armstrong even identified one company that he believed would one day be resurrected to work in cahoots with the German empire. At the end of World War ii, the factories and facilities of German industrial giant Friedrich Krupp AG lay in ruins. After the war, its owner, a staunch Nazi supporter named Alfried Krupp, was convicted at Nuremburg. He was imprisoned for war crimes.
But here is what Mr. Armstrong forecast: “Alfried Krupp, who once provided Germany with most of her munitions that plunged the world into the holocaust of the last war, can no longer manufacture crude steel or own coal mines in Germany. But Alfried Krupp is not giving up on his plans! No indeed. Latest reports reveal that Krupp has made contracts with foreign governments to build up his vast empire abroad” (Plain Truth, November 1953).
History has proven these forecasts startlingly accurate. Today, Germany’s military industry, including that of the Krupp company, is thriving.
Plans to Rebuild the Nazi Empire
In 1996, the U.S. government declassified a top-secret World War ii document (printed in full in our free booklet Germany’s Conquest of the Balkans) that exposed agreements made between several German industrial giants and top German political officials—nine months before the war’s end in Europe. The document shows that on August 10, 1944, German corporate leaders representing several of the nation’s most powerful companies at the time met with German military and political personnel in Strasbourg, France. The purpose of this meeting, and a follow-up meeting the same year, was to launch the industrialists into “a postwar commercial campaign.”
This campaign was to “finance the Nazi Party, which would be forced to go underground” and to ensure that “a strong German empire [could] be created after the defeat.” These industrialists were specifically told to “make contacts and alliances with foreign firms” and to strengthen Germany “through their exports.”
Among the men attending this covert meeting was “Dr. Kaspar,” a representative of Friedrich Krupp AG.
Despite his undeniable connection to Nazi Germany, Alfried Krupp was released from prison in 1951. He reassumed control of Friedrich Krupp AG in 1953. Krupp died in 1967 with his personal copy of Mein Kampf still on his nightstand, but his company continued to flourish on the path he had set for it. The following year, Friedrich Krupp AG was converted into a corporation, with shares being held by the Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach Foundation in Essen. Krupp’s protégé, Berthold Beitz, became head of the foundation and chairman of the corporation’s Board of Trustees.
In 1999, the corporation merged its steel operation with Thyssen AG, which was formerly a rival firm. Today, Essen remains the headquarters for ThyssenKrupp Stahl AG. With 180,050 employees and annual revenue of over $66.4 billion, it is considered a global industrial giant. It produces steel, automotive technologies, heavy machinery, transportation equipment, marine systems and industrial plants.
In 2008, ThyssenKrupp began a dramatic shift in its operations. Early in the year, its aerospace branch acquired Apollo Metals and Aviation Metals. In 2009, it sold stakes and entire production sites of its civil shipbuilding operations in Germany. It also struck an agreement to jointly produce naval surface ships with the Abu Dhabi mar Group. Essentially, the company took strides in the direction of military production, moving back toward its historic focus: manufacturing military equipment. By 2011, just a few years after ThyssenKrupp’s shift toward building military equipment, it already ranked number 49 on Stockholm International Peace Research Institute’s (sipri) list of the world’s largest weapons-producing companies. In the time since, its output has multiplied.
The secret document released in 1996 clearly shows that several German industrial giants, including Krupp, had a specific plan to support the resurgence of Germany and its domineering ideologies. Krupp representatives were told that they must “through their exports increase the strength of Germany” and “prepare themselves to finance the Nazi Party which would be forced to go underground.”
Under Beitz’s leadership, the corporation shed much of its public association with Nazism. What it has not lost is its unswerving devotion to the goal of establishing a globally dominant postwar Germany. Everything is going just as Alfried Krupp and Dr. Kaspar planned some 70 years ago.
Though the Krupp name is above reproach in Germany today, the indisputable facts of history show that Mr. Armstrong’s forecasts about this powerful company were well founded and uncannily accurate.
On January 18, 2010, MarketWatch columnist David Marsh wrote an article titled “German Defense Giant in the Making.” Marsh was referring to the announcement in January 2010 by two of Germany’s top military manufacturers—Rheinmetall and man Group—of their intention to merge their military vehicle production. The resulting combine has produced a new national champion and leading supplier for wheeled military vehicles in Europe.
According to Marsh, the amalgamation, which was in the works for a year, was pushed by Germany’s political class. The German government is a big supporter of bulking up German military industry, and “has been providing behind-the-scenes assistance to make sure industry goes in the right direction,” reported Marsh. The new combine “meets the long-held German desire to build industrial companies with world scale in the defense field.”
It appears some are finally waking to the transformation occurring within Germany’s military industry. But Herbert Armstrong warned about this “long-held German desire” to rebuild the nation’s military industry for decades!
Rheinmetall has been at the forefront of German military manufacturing for over 100 years, so it isn’t too surprising that it again became a weapons builder after the World War ii loss. In fact, despite the Allies’ initial ban on arms production, Rheinmetall was again mass-producing machine guns by 1956. By 1972, Rheinmetall had developed and begun selling the Leopard 2 battle tank. Not much later, and after a series of corporate acquisitions, Rheinmetall became Europe’s leading military supplier of systems and equipment for ground forces, providing everything from artillery and munitions to communications, surveillance technology and guided missile systems. Rheinmetall subsidiaries, which also include significant automotive component manufacturers, are located throughout Europe, the Americas and China.
Man’s over 250 years of history is even more impressive. man (Maschinenfabrik Augsburg-Nürnberg) is one of Europe’s leading manufacturers of commercial vehicles, engines and mechanical engineering equipment. man builds trucks, buses, diesel engines and turbo-machinery; it also provides industrial services. During World War ii, and in conjunction with Rheinmetall, man produced the hugely successful Panther tank. Following the war, man took over notorious World War ii light vehicle manufacturer Büssing.
Here is the real reason the Rheinmetall-man alliance should be thoroughly scrutinized.
Plans to Rebuild the Nazi Empire
According to that August 10, 1944, document, representatives from Volkswagenwerk, Messerschmitt, Rheinmetall, Rochling and Büssing were among those who met with top Nazi leaders to prepare to rebound after the eventual German defeat.
German industrialists must, the document said, “through their exports increase the strength of Germany.” These companies were instructed to place existing financial reserves at the disposal of the Nazi Party “so that a strong German empire can be created after the defeat.” Notice, in addition to Krupp, Rheinmetall and Büssing (now owned by man) also had representatives at this critical Nazi conference.
Today all three are leaders in the global military armaments industry! Rheinmetall, for example, ranks number 26 on sipri’s list.
These are not the only “success” stories for World War ii-era German companies.
Volkswagen, another German corporation documented for its collusion with the World War ii Nazis, has become a globally dominant automotive power. Although its core market is the European Union, Volkswagen sales make it the world’s third-largest automotive company by revenue. Volkswagen owns the Bentley brand, international vehicle manufacturer Audi, Seat and Skoda, which manufacture and sell cars in Spain and in Southern and Eastern Europe, and Lamborghini, which makes sports cars in Italy.
Messerschmitt, Germany’s famous World War ii manufacturer that built much of the fighting aircraft in the Luftwaffe, is also prospering today, though under a different name. Like Krupp, much of Messerschmitt’s infrastructure was destroyed in the war; the company was even forbidden to produce aircraft. Yet it too has risen from the rubble of World War ii to become part of a world-leading corporation. Messerschmitt was eventually allowed to build aircraft again under the name Airbus. In 1989, after several postwar mergers, it became part of Daimler-Benz Aerospace (another German industrial giant). Daimler-Benz Aerospace then later helped found the European Aeronautic Defense and Space Company (eads), becoming a 30 percent owner. In January 2014, eads renamed itself as Airbus Group, taking the name of its commercial aircraft-building subsidiary, which became its largest revenue generator.
Airbus Group today is one of the world’s lead players in aerospace and defense technology. The multinational group includes the world’s largest helicopter supplier, and is also a major shareholder in mbda, which is the international leader in missile systems. Airbus Group produces the Eurofighter and other military aircraft, and generates about $76 billion a year. Galileo, the European satellite navigation system being constructed to rival the U.S.’s gps, is also being built in large part by Airbus Group. The company employs over 143,000 people at more than 70 production sites, primarily in France, Germany, Great Britain and Spain. It ranks number seven on sipri’s list of the world’s largest weapons-producing companies!
Stunning, isn’t it? Peaceably, through corporate mergers and acquisitions, German corporations are reaching out beyond their nation’s borders to gain control of vital strategic industry. Even Germany’s most notorious World War ii companies, which were systematically disassembled and banned from future arms production by the Allies, have emerged as European and global powerhouses.
Few people see it, but Germany’s industrial war machines have been revamped and rebuilt, and they are back in fighting order—exactly as Herbert Armstrong predicted would happen!
Europe’s Inroads Into Latin America
Carefully planned and executed by the EU and the Vatican
When Germany lay smoldering in the rubble of World War ii, a lone voice warned that Berlin’s will for global dominance had not been broken, and that it would rise again—one final time. That voice said Germany had prepared a blueprint for that rise long before its defeat by Allied powers.
This final time, instead of stony-faced, jack-booted soldiers conquering nations by blitzkrieg force, it would be posh businessmen equipped with the weapons of the new Euroforce: tailored suits, briefcases and laptops. This war would be fought in corporate boardrooms, at political functions and business lunches, and through meticulous international diplomacy.
And this time around, that voice warned, Europe would have the help of Latin America. Of course, that voice belonged to Herbert W. Armstrong, and time has proven that his forecast was spot on.
“Germany’s plans in South America were temporarily halted by her defeat in World War ii,” the Plain Truth reported in May 1962.
What plans were these? Well, Germans had been making inroads into Latin America even back in the 1530s, in the earliest decades of European colonization—long before the various German peoples were even united into one country.
The primary influx of Germans occurred in the mid-1800s, when Latin American nations had stabilized and Germany remained disunited. In communities throughout Brazil, Venezuela, Colombia, Argentina, Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia, Chile, Guatemala and elsewhere, industrious German immigrants began to exert robust influence in politics, culture and especially the business sector.
That Plain Truth article continued, “South America will be conquered by business agents, not by guns” (quoting T. H. Tetens, Germany Plots With the Kremlin; emphasis added).
Much of the German influence had a positive effect on Latin American development and prosperity, but, as the decades went by and the Third Reich rose back in the homeland, some of these German immigrants proved to be aggressive Pan-Germanists, fascists and Nazis.
A study into these early Teutonic inroads into Latin America shows that some leading Germans planned to extend their vision of a German-led empire into Latin America and to capitalize on the Catholic culture they shared in order to tap into the reserves of the resource-rich continent.
Germany’s crushing defeat in World War ii slowed those plans, but it did not stop them. In fact, it set events in motion that delivered a great boost to Germany’s long-term strategy in Latin America.
After World War ii, over 55,000 Germans fled their native land to live in havens in other nations. Thousands of Nazi sympathizers from Croatia, Hungary and Yugoslavia also fled their countries to continue working for the coming European religious-corporate Reich. Many of these war criminals fled through the Vatican-engineered “ratlines.” The majority of them ended up in Latin America.
The October 1957 issue of the Plain Truth said, “During World War ii, Argentina was an outspoken friend of Hitler, sheltering Nazi officers and men, offering safe haven for Nazi ships and submarines. Many Nazis found their way to Argentina and safety while Hitler’s regime was collapsing under the steady rain of Allied bombs.”
Juan Perón, president of Argentina during the postwar years, openly boasted about how delighted his government was to absorb well-trained, highly educated Nazi war criminals after Germany’s defeat. “The German government has invested millions of marks into the development of these people; we only paid for the airplane ticket,” he said.
By 1950, Berlin had carved out a high-level military presence in Argentina; German companies were again firmly planted in several Latin American nations; Adolf Hitler’s puppet ruler, Ante Pavelić, was injecting fascist ideology into Paraguay; and the Nazis had intelligence agents entrenched in Argentina, Chile, Venezuela, Ecuador and other nations.
In the decades since then, the Vatican has helped many German and other European corporations tap into Latin America’s most lucrative industrial and agricultural markets. German corporate giants such as ThyssenKrupp, Siemens, Bayer, Volkswagen, I. G. Farben and Deutsche Bank are now household names south of the Rio Grande, across Panama, in the Andean nations, and clear down to southern Argentina and Chile.
Since Germany’s unification in 1990, and Berlin’s subsequent climb to the ruling seat of the European Union, all levels of EU trade and investment in the Latin region have dramatically increased.
Herbert Armstrong knew far in advance that communism would fail to entice the Latinos and that British and American influence there would dwindle. He knew it would be German-led Europe that would ultimately achieve its long-term goal of economic and religious domination of Latin America. Europe today is rapidly achieving that goal.
The modern strategic partnership between the EU and the Latin region was initiated in June 1999 at the first European Union, Latin America and the Caribbean (eu-lac) Summit held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
The eu-lac includes all nations of the EU and Latin America, representing a population of about a billion people. It meets every two years to boost cooperation in issues ranging from trade and science to culture and politics. In 2010, the two sides created the eu-lac Foundation. Where in all of Europe and Latin America did they decide to build the foundation’s facilities? Hamburg, Germany.
The organization has served as a remarkable boon to both sides, particularly in the wake of Europe’s recent financial turmoil: “The difficult economic times for Europe come in contrast to the sustained growth for the majority of the countries of our continent …. Latin America is a part, not of the problem, but of the possible solutions to the global crisis,” Alfredo Moreno, Chile’s minister of foreign affairs, said in 2012.
In recent years, the EU has finalized free-trade pacts with Chile, Peru, Colombia, Mexico, Panama, Costa Rica, Honduras and Nicaragua. It has also been laboring to conclude formal talks toward a free-trade pact with the entire Latin American region. Already, the EU has established itself as the number one foreign investor in Latin America. In 2010, Europe invested some $486.8 billion into the Latin region—more than its foreign direct investment in China, Russia and India combined.
The EU is also Latin America’s second-largest trade partner, with the European Commission reporting that, from 2002 to 2012, total European Union trade with Latin America more than doubled, soaring from $128.6 billion to $285.1 billion.
By developing this relationship, which it calls a “strategic alliance,” Europe is directly challenging Washington’s bygone hopes of creating a Pan-American free-trade area. This challenge of U.S. influence was also predicted by Mr. Armstrong.
To the Icy Exclusion of the United States
The May 1962 Plain Truth declared that “the United States is going to be left out in the cold as two gigantic trade blocs, Europe and Latin America, mesh together and begin calling the shots in world commerce.”
In perhaps the most powerful statement in its 1999 report, the European Commission declared, “The European alternative can thus represent a viable counterweight to what is sometimes perceived as excessive economic and political dependence.” This is saying that Latin America could and should break its dependence on the United States, and instead rely on the Europeans.
The Plain Truth asked its readers some sobering questions in its April 1966 issue: “Can you see why we warn readers that the Latin American Common Market and the Central American Common Market are dangerously close to becoming partners with the European Common Market? Can you see these giant combines are dangerously close to turning their backs on America and Britain, once and for all? Can you see why we warn you that the Nazis—hiding out all over South America—are dangerously close to rising again, this time to be victorious as prophesied in Isaiah 10, Jeremiah 25:15-33?”
Today, we might ask if we see the seriousness of the eu-lac combine, and the implications of its congealing cooperation. An economically unified, politically stable Latino bloc is necessary to ensure constant delivery of goods to Europe. It is also a way for the Europeans to reduce U.S. geopolitical power. These are major reasons why Europe, with Vatican assistance, is working hard to constantly shore up its influence in Latin America.
At present, the United States is still Latin America’s largest trade partner, but its position there has been sliding to make way for stronger ties between Europe and the Latin American nations.
One sobering sign of this slide came in February 2014. Fueled by anger over Washington’s unapologetic spying on Latin American and European leaders (including a tap on German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s mobile phone), the EU and Brazil agreed to lay an undersea cable stretching some 3,500 miles from Lisbon to Fortaleza. The $185 million cable project is designed to keep the U.S. out of the loop in EU-Latin American communications, and could pave the way to push Washington further out of Latin America.
The same month, Europe and Brazil expressed hope for a breakthrough in trade negotiations between the EU and Mercosur, a bloc that includes Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay, Uruguay and Venezuela. The two sides have been working toward a mammoth free-trade deal since 2000, but the talks so far have produced few results.
Their mutual anger over U.S. spying may prove to be just the catalyst needed to jolt the trade deal to life. “For the first time, I think we are close to achieving that objective,” Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff said. “I think both sides are very much aware of the importance of this trade agreement.”
Once Europe’s unification is complete, the U.S.’s position with Brazil and other Latin American nations will slip rapidly into oblivion.
The Catholic Connection
The headquarters of the Catholic Church is in Europe. Yet it is not Europe but Latin America—incorporating Mexico, the Central American isthmus and the continent of South America—that constitutes the most catholicized landmass in the world. The region’s largest country, Brazil, has more Roman Catholics than any nation on the planet, and Mexico is a close second. No continent is more aligned with the Vatican than Latin America.
The Plain Truth recognized the deep importance of the religious roots Europeans and Latin Americans share. In October 1957, it said, “Latin American nations will join in with the European revival of the old Roman Empire ….” Throughout history, that empire has been guided by the Vatican.
In recent decades, the Vatican’s role in the EU-Latin American relationship has become more and more pronounced.
During his 1979 to 2005 papacy, Pope John Paul ii visited all 24 countries of Central and South America. The visits were part of an effort to stabilize the region and to remind Latin America of the religion and culture it shares with Europe and of its trade obligations to the EU. Pope Benedict xvi, with a 2007 visit to Brazil, kept the momentum from his predecessor moving forward.
A few years later, Benedict handed the church’s reins over to a man who is perhaps better qualified than any other to orchestrate the third and final act of Latin America’s joining in with “the European revival of the old Roman Empire.” Pope Francis i, born Jorge Bergoglio, became the Catholic Church’s first Latin American pope in history. He grew up in Argentina—the Latin American nation more culturally and politically influenced by its connection to Nazi Germany than any other.
Since his induction into office in March 2013, Francis has had staggering success in healing the reputation of the “mother” church and in spearheading a global revival of Catholic enthusiasm. “What makes this pope so important is the speed with which he has captured the imaginations of millions who had given up hope for the church at all,” Time magazine wrote of Francis.
Pope Francis’s role in absorbing Latin America into Europe’s imperialist drive is crucial. Langley Intelligence Group Network said, “[H]e will be very strong towards bringing Argentina, Venezuela and Cuba into the Catholic fold.” Time has proven that true.
To an even greater degree than with Europeans, the pope’s fellow Argentines have been moved by Francis’s charm; one year into his papacy the number of Argentines who identified as Catholic rose by a stunning 12 percent. This change takes on even more relevance when we consider that the vast majority of Argentines already identified as Catholic before this 12 percent boost. Similar increases were reported throughout Latin America.
Remember, while Germany still lay defeated, Mr. Armstrong warned that it would rise again behind the cloak of a uniting Europe. He also declared that Europe would dominate the Latino common market largely by harnessing the Catholic Church’s religious dominance.
With one foot firmly planted in Europe and the other in his native Latin America, Pope Francis appears poised to accomplish this outcome. He could well be the man to complete Rome’s effort to draw Latin Americans under its influence and to forge an intercontinental empire, which is, in reality, the biblically prophesied seventh and final resurrection of the Holy Roman Empire!Chinese Checkers in Chile and Beyond
It is crucial to watch the deep economic inroads China is steadily making into Latin America, especially since the year 2000. Europe is certainly watching them! But there is a fundamental difference between Europe’s drive into Latin America and that of China.
Beijing is there for a straightforward reason: It needs resources to fuel China’s rise, and Latin America has plenty of them. The EU’s trade and humanitarian efforts in Latin America, on the other hand, are more complex. Rather than a simple thirst for resources, Europe’s efforts are designed to extend its rising empire. The blood and religion Latin America shares with Europe are thicker than the economic ties it shares with China.
Yet Europe’s influence in Latin America has slipped slightly as Beijing’s ambitions have swelled. Chinese Marxist revolutionary Mao Tse Tung vowed to his people decades ago, “All that the West has, China will have.” China’s rapacious drive into Latin America and other regions is evidence that Mao’s words still resonate clearly in the Chinese mind-set.
But we should be assured that Europe will not sit passively as Beijing gobbles up Latin America’s wealth.
As the size of China’s Latin American footprint grows, Europe will work with ferocity to bolster its own presence there. Europe is troubled by the roots the Chinese (and to a lesser degree the Russians) are extending into Latin America because it knows that if the Asian axis can conquer the Americas, then not only would the Asians be able to monopolize the resource-rich continents, but they would also basically have the European landmass surrounded—with the Americas on Europe’s right and the Asian lands on Europe’s left.
At present, the lack of cohesion among European nations prevents Germany and the EU from doing much to reverse China’s deepening inroads into Latin America. But Asia’s drive into the Latin region will actually act as a catalyst for EU unity.
Our Financial 9/11 Was Prophesied!
A reunited Germany will dominate a soon-to-be-resurrected Holy Roman Empire! That was Herbert W. Armstrong’s keynote prophecy, which he forecast even as the flames from World War ii smoldered amid the rubble of German cities. His message was unrelenting: The rise of this German-led “United States of Europe,” as he termed it, would immediately precede the catastrophic events Jesus Christ discussed in Matthew 24.
Mr. Armstrong delivered his forecast for Europe for decades, consistently and in detail. Right up until his death in January 1986, he never stopped sending that warning message.
To put it succinctly: Mr. Armstrong warned that a massive financial crisis centered in America would ripple across the whole world—and would spark the rise of the seventh and final resurrection of the Holy Roman Empire.
In light of recent events, that forecast truly is impressive—not to mention an undeniable testament to Mr. Armstrong’s matchless grasp of biblical prophecy.
In 1968, Mr. Armstrong wrote a letter discussing the catastrophic economic conditions that would plague the United States and Britain in the end time. “If the dollar is devalued, inflation will almost surely result,” he wrote, “and eventual economic collapse for the United States” (co-worker letter, March 26, 1968; emphasis added throughout).
Referring to prophecies such as those in Leviticus 26 and Deuteronomy 28, he continued: “Those of you who truly believe the prophecies of your Bible know such economic collapse is prophesied to happen! … We have shown how God prophesied a virtual trade war will get under way against the United States and Britain—and how our national economics will falter, and then collapse!”
Over the next 20 years, Mr. Armstrong’s forecast became even more specific. In 1984, he wrote that a massive banking crisis in America “could suddenly result in triggering European nations to unite as a new world power larger than either the Soviet Union or the U.S. That, in turn, could bring on the Great Tribulation suddenly. And that will lead quickly into the Second Coming of Christ and end of this world as we know it” (co-worker letter, July 22, 1984).
In August of that year, he expounded on what would precipitate the ignition of the nuclear catastrophe described in Matthew 24. “Now we’re hearing in the news of a soon-coming nuclear winter,” he wrote. “Nuclear explosions will produce an Earth-covering cloud that will give us a nuclear night. The sun will not get through. Crops will not grow. Billions will be killed by the nuclear blasts. Those remaining will starve. … [T]his is no wolf-wolf cry! It is prophesied in your Bible! It is real! And … economic crisis threatens to bring this about …” (co-worker letter, Aug. 23, 1984).
In autumn 2008, the first shock waves of that economic crisis struck.
America’s Financial 9/11
The days surrounding September 11, 2008, are now infamous. The image of many of America’s most prestigious financial institutions rapidly collapsing has been etched into the minds of the American populace. In reality, that disastrous week represented a turning point in U.S. financial power.
What remains is a gaping crater in the nation’s now-discredited economic core. America’s economy will never fully recover.
“The nation is gripped by the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression,” the New York Times wrote September 21, 2008. “Before … the Treasury secretary, the Federal Reserve chairman and leaders on Capitol Hill proclaimed their intentions to take over bad debts, the prognosis for the American financial system was sliding from grim toward potentially apocalyptic.”
That calamity touched off a major recession in America that quickly went global. Millions of jobs were lost. Since the start of 2008, more than 460 banks have failed in the U.S. alone. (Contrast that with the five years prior to 2008, during which only 10 banks failed). In an effort to turn things around, the U.S. government injected trillions of dollars into rescue packages and bailouts, further burdening an already debt-saturated economy.
In 2011, for the first time since World War ii, U.S. debt exceeded its gross domestic product. By October 2013, the country’s national debt surged past $17 trillion.
Looking back, it is clear that the events of September 2008 dealt a deathblow to America’s reputation as a stable economic superpower. “It really does look as if the foundations of U.S. capitalism have shattered,” observed German daily Der Spiegel. For the United States, September 2008 was more of a turning point than September 11, 2001! It announced to the world that the American economic system had passed the point of no return.
Note this accurate forecast from the September 1983 Plain Truth. After a G-7 economic summit, the author noted “just how important confidence in America is to the stability of the entire Western world.” A crisis of confidence in America was bound to have dramatic global ramifications, it said—a forecast that has proved frightfully true. Then that article made this additional, more specific point: “The lack of confidence in American leadership must ultimately lead to a parting of the ways between the United States and Western Europe ….”
The inevitability of this transatlantic split is clear in biblical prophecy. Still, the insight to know that it would be precipitated by convulsions within the U.S. that would shatter global confidence is remarkable. And the September 2008 economic calamity moved events toward the fulfillment of this prediction. It rocked America’s reputation—but for Europe it precipitated a very different series of events. Europe took it as a catalyst to unite itself, and to begin stepping into the vacuum created by America’s crumbling financial system.
Within 14 months of the events of September 2008, all 27 European Union members had ratified the Lisbon Treaty. By December 2009, the EU constitution had taken effect, effectively forging the EU into an imperial power.
As you read earlier, this was exactly what Mr. Armstrong forecast would happen!
German Finance Minister Peer Steinbrück summed up European sentiment in October 2008 when he stated that “the origin and the center of gravity of the problem is clearly in the U.S.” German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Nicolas Sarkozy agreed, both making it clear that they believed the global financial crisis was America’s fault. Pope Benedict xvi threw his voice behind the Europeans too. In a July 2009 encyclical, he joined the chorus calling for a new world financial order independent of the U.S.
Soon, Europe’s demands for tighter control over global finance gave rise to tangible actions. At the G-20 economic summit in November 2008, the world’s most powerful economies discussed the creation of international bodies for regulating global finance. Europe, which dominates the G-20, quickly emerged at the forefront of the movement to reform the world’s financial system.
“Europe is moving rapidly to overhaul the global financial system in the wake of the economic crisis, pushing through new measures and proposing others that could impose significant restrictions on American and other firms based far beyond its borders,” observed the Washington Post on June 13, 2009. “The Europeans are now out front, for instance, in setting strict new standards for rating agencies and risk management at firms selling mortgage-backed securities. Europe has also seized the initiative in developing new rules to monitor hedge funds while forging ahead this week with plans to create two new powerful regulatory agencies in Europe ….”
Europe’s ever growing web of rules and regulations will have a major impact on America, noted the Post: “The campaign across the Atlantic has global implications, in large part because even firms based in the United States may be compelled to follow Europe’s tougher rules.”
A “new balance of power” is being worked out in Europe, reported independent news organization EurActiv. “France and Germany are openly challenging the rule of the City of London as Europe’s main financial hub, and are keen to see Paris or Frankfurt as powerful financial centers in a new, more regulated global system” (July 31, 2009).
By that time, 2009, a sovereign debt crisis was emerging in Europe. Unlike the U.S. debt woes, it can be theorized that the EU crisis was deliberately engineered within Europe’s Economic and Monetary Union (emu). As Bernard Connolly explains in The Rotten Heart of Europe, the emu is a construct of German elites designed to benefit Germany’s export economy at the expense of the rest.
By 2011, Germany, the undisputed leader of the EU, had taken charge of managing the euro crisis. The Jesuit-educated son of Rome Mario Draghi assumed control of the world’s largest central bank, the European Central Bank (ecb), on November 1 of that year. By December 8 he had submitted to all EU leaders a fiscal pact for EU nations demanding that the ecb be handed full control of the mechanisms by which it would be implemented: the Exchange Rate Mechanism and the European Financial Stability Facility. EU leaders, except those in Britain, agreed to these demands.
The predominant EU member nations angrily denounced Britain’s refusal to join this fiscal union, threatening to destroy the major underpinning of the UK economy, London’s finance industry. This was the beginning of the process of Britain’s segregation from the EU. As Herbert Armstrong declared decades ago, even before Britain joined what was to become the EU, “Whether or not Britain now makes it into the Common Market, it is certain, I feel, she will not be one of the [members of the final united Europe]” (Plain Truth, May 1969).
The eurozone debt crisis is the catalyst dividing Europe into what is referred to as a “two speed” Europe. The fiscal pact formalizes it, consolidating a minority of EU nations—the eurozone—into a fiscal union. Ultimately, the strongest Roman Catholic economies within the EU will break away from the rest, demanding that they yield to the power of the Rome-Berlin axis or be cut off from vital resources (Revelation 16-17). This is the next step toward refining the rising United States of Europe into a 10-nation imperial bloc as Herbert Armstrong prophesied in 1952: “But there will be a United States of Europe—a union of 10 nations” (Who or What Is the Prophetic Beast?).
How Could He Have Known?
Go back and reread the forecasts made by Mr. Armstrong about the unification of Europe, the rise of a European superpower, and the event that would set it all in motion. Remember: He made those statements when the Soviet empire dominated Eastern Europe and Germany was still cut in two. The European Union didn’t even exist until almost a decade later. Yet Mr. Armstrong clearly forecast the future of Europe, even explaining that financial crises would contribute to its rise as a superpower.
How could he have known?
Mr. Armstrong relied on what the Apostle Peter called the “more sure word of prophecy” (2 Peter 1:19). He had 100 percent faith in the Bible as God’s Word and that it was God’s mind in print. For more than 60 years he studied, meditated on and declared it as the definite Word of God. How was he so well informed about Europe specifically? He studied the prophecies such as those recorded in Daniel 2 and 7 and Revelation 13 and 17, which forecast these events.
Then, thankfully, Mr. Armstrong wrote down the truths God had revealed. For decades, he recorded them in articles and booklets, and he discussed them before tens of millions on his World Tomorrow television broadcast. He wanted to share the insight God gave him with the largest audience possible.
To learn more about the future of the seventh and final resurrection of the Holy Roman Empire, and what it means specifically for Britain, keep reading!
Britain Was Warned!
After nearly four decades of European Union membership for Britain, an important warning leaps into greater significance.
“Britain is going to look back on Monday, January 1, 1973, in all probability, as a most tragically historic date—a date fraught with ominous potentialities! For that date marked the United Kingdom’s entry into the European Community.”
That statement, written in the March 1973 Plain Truth, is classic Herbert Armstrong: gripping, plain, sincere—and true.
Just ask the growing number of Britons grappling with the realization that the European Union has established a major beachhead within British society. Ask the 17.4 million majority “Brexit” voters who, on June 23, 2016, voted decisively to leave the EU. For them, it’s growing increasingly difficult not to look back on January 1, 1973, and lament it as a “tragically historic date.” Today, the “ominous potentialities” Mr. Armstrong referred to have become alarming realities.
Britain and the EU
On January 1, 2010, after decades of planning, the EU became an official global imperialist power, underpinned by a federal constitution that binds member countries to a supreme head in Brussels. For centuries, European rulers such as Napoleon and Hitler had been unsuccessful in their goal of dominating Britain. But on that first day of 2010, when the EU presidency and foreign ministry came into force under the Lisbon Treaty, the United Kingdom finally became officially subservient to Europe.
Many Britons were deeply concerned. “Britain is no longer a sovereign nation,” wrote British politician Daniel Hannan the morning after the treaty was enacted. “At midnight last night, we ceased to be an independent state, bound by international treaties to other independent states, and became instead a subordinate unit within a European state“ (Telegraph, Dec. 1, 2009).
The Lisbon Treaty “tramples [Britain’s] Magna Carta into the dust,” Ambrose Evans-Pritchard lamented in the Telegraph. “The founding texts of the English constitution—charter, petition, bill of rights—have one theme in common: They create nothing. They assert old freedoms; they restore lost harmony. In this they guided America’s Revolution, itself a codification of early colonial liberties,” he wrote (Dec. 6, 2009).
Contrast this with the Lisbon Treaty/EU constitution. Evans-Pritchard correctly asserted that “insiders hijacked the process” of its creation. These insiders were unelected elites who worked for years seeking to enforce their undemocratic constitution on Europeans by the most undemocratic of means. And the Lisbon Treaty was a key part of those efforts.
Black Eyes for Britain
In these maneuvers, Germany and France obtained mechanisms that gave them greater sway over Europe—while Britain’s power diminished. The Lisbon Treaty, according to global intelligence company Stratfor, placed Germany and France in “key positions they can use to increase their influence over the European Union’s inner workings and important policy areas” and allows them to “take charge of the European Union’s functions” (Dec. 1, 2009).
Europe blamed the financial fiasco that began in 2008 on the Anglo-Saxon model, which relies heavily on free-flowing credit. In response, the EU began creating a regulatory regime so replete with regulations, laws and red tape that it ensured London’s way of doing business would not prosper again. This oppressive regulation eventually delivered the deathblow to London’s status as a global financial capital.
“The English are the big losers in this business,” said Nicolas Sarkozy, president of France at the time. Economically, the people of Britain are indeed the big losers in the EU, but the losses are not limited to the banking sector. EU regulations touched almost every level of every industry in Britain. Until the Brexit process is finally completed, these regulations will continue to affect Britain to one degree or another.
“If you want to build something, grow something, mince something, scrap something, recycle something, burn something, paint something, bake something, package something or do a myriad of other things, there is a sheaf of densely typed regulations just for you,” said Matthew Elliot, coauthor of The Great European Rip-off. “In total, red tape from Brussels adds another £100 billion [us$166 billion] of lost income, extra expenditure and forfeited economic growth to the bill.”
Elliot and other economists estimate that Britain’s total cost to be in the EU—factoring in all the harmful impacts of all the policies and regulations—has been almost $200 billion a year. That equals more than $3,000 for each man, woman and child. That massive amount has been going toward such things as funding the central EU budget, paying an army of British public servants to implement and oversee EU regulations, and subsidizing European farmers. A portion of it has returned to Britain in the form of grants, but such grants funded only EU-approved initiates, many of which did not actually benefit the British.
Britain has also suffered higher unemployment rates due to the EU’s “free movement of human capital” policy.
Although EU cheerleaders tried to discredit any data that casts Europe in a negative light, the actual evidence that emboldened the Brexit movement proved that membership in the EU was a net cost for the Brits. What remains to be seen is how long Britain will take to officially exit the European Union and how amicable that process will be.
Why Britain Is in This Predicament
How has Britain—the nation that very recently ruled the greatest and most benign empire the world has ever known—come to find itself a victim in this abusive relationship with the EU? Why is formerly Great Britain now sidelined and languishing in minor-power status?
The reasons for its staggering decline are numerous: Many British claimed undue credit for the prosperity they enjoyed, and succumbed to guilt and self-loathing, which prompted them to relinquish most of the empire. During the same time, two world wars decimated the strength of the nation’s manpower. Britain was then further drained by its decades-long but never-quite-successful campaign to hitch itself to Europe. And it underwent a revolution in morality, culture and religion.
Have the British, in all of this, simply been victims of the inevitable cycles of history? Was it coincidence that gave them that globe-girdling empire to begin with, and then ripped it away? For answers, we must look back far earlier in history.
Starting over 3,000 years ago, God inspired His prophets to record exactly what would happen to the British Empire. The biblical name “Ephraim,” which refers to the people who became modern-day Britain, is mentioned in well over 100 passages. Britain is also one of the nations collectively called “Israel” in many passages, and is occasionally referred to by other biblical names too. (For proof of modern Britain’s identity in the Bible, request a free copy of Herbert W. Armstrong’s book The United States and Britain in Prophecy.) Scripture foretold the British Empire’s rise and decline, even anticipating the very curses it is experiencing today. Prophecies also make clear that these circumstances would lead to Britain’s eventual complete collapse.
Through several decades under Mr. Armstrong’s editorial eye, the Plain Truth reported in detail the curses that were increasingly plaguing Britain, all the while forewarning that they were merely the prelude to far worse.
Several Plain Truth articles published during the 1960s in particular detailed Britain’s woes at the time: economic problems, low food production, struggles with defining its commonwealth, racial tension, a burgeoning and unsustainable welfare system, notorious laziness, and preoccupation with entertainment. The Plain Truth pointed out that, even at that epoch, Britain was often viewed as inferior to Europe, sometimes referred to as “the sick man of Europe” and “an international charity case.” Britain was not really considered integral to the economically uniting Continent.
On more than one occasion, the Plain Truth even explained prophecies of detailed correction from God, showing His efforts to arrest Britain’s attention, turn the nation around, and set it back on a path paved with blessings.
Consider, as an example, these paragraphs from the December 1964 Plain Truth: “Relations between Britain and Europe will continue to deteriorate until ‘The Lord shall bring a nation against thee from far … which also shall not leave thee either corn, wine, or oil …. [H]e shall besiege thee in all thy gates …’ (Deuteronomy 28:49-52).
“These prophecies reveal a soon-coming ‘siege’—a trading blockade—of modern-day Israel! Of all the nations that compose modern-day Israel, none is more vulnerable to such a trade embargo than the United Kingdom. Under present conditions, the British Isles are entirely unable to feed their population without massive food imports. Even during the strenuous agricultural efforts of World War ii, Britain was able to produce barely half her food requirements! Since then, population has increased, farming land diminished.
“Yet the British public remains apathetic! … The new generation insists only on less work and more benefits. The welfare state, supported by each government in turn, encourages just such an attitude. … But as the cry grows louder for wage increases, unemployment pay, sick benefits, pensions, allowances, national assistance, grants and payments—the entire economy staggers, unable to stay afloat!”
Now, having stumbled through those tough times with no improvement in its behavior, Britain faces an intensification of its problems. Its welfare state has bloated to far greater proportions—as has its drag on the economy. And its corruption and immorality are far worse. Britain today is a house divided, and the 52-48 Brexit vote accentuated and worsened the divisions within the United Kingdom.
Will Britain Awaken?
As revealed in such scriptures as Job 12:23 and Isaiah 40:15, it is God who makes and unmakes nations. He made Britain what it once was, and He is unmaking it today.
Scripture explains—in passages like Leviticus 26 and Deuteronomy 28—what God’s reasons are for sending curses on Britain. Still, Britain toils on, trying to solve its problems with its own ingenuity. Instead of looking to God, Britain is relying on its “allies” like Europe—or, as the Bible refers to them, its “lovers.” “[T]hey have gone up to Assyria, Like a wild donkey alone by itself; Ephraim has hired lovers” (Hosea 8:9; New King James Version). (For proof that Assyria refers to Germany, request a free copy of Germany and the Holy Roman Empire.)
God never intended for Britain to join with Europe. Its ill-advised efforts to do so have revealed fatal weakness and lack of trust in the Source of its national greatness. At the same time, they have portended the downfall of the country!
In 1966, the Plain Truth made this important statement: “The big question: ‘What will it take to wake up the people of Britain?’ Will it take a terrible economic depression, or will it take national military defeat at the hands of a German-dominated United States of Europe?” (October 1966).
There the article referred to the prophesied ultimate fall of Britain!
As Bible prophecy makes clear to those who have the key to understand it, Britain will only learn its lesson through total defeat and the subjugation of its people as slaves to a United Europe!
“I know Ephraim, and Israel is not hid from me …. They will not frame their doings to turn unto their God …. Ephraim also is like a silly dove without heart: they call to Egypt, they go to Assyria [Britain is fulfilling this prophecy even as you read this]. When they shall go, I will spread my net upon them; I will bring them down as the fowls of the heaven; I will chastise them, as their congregation hath heard. … My God will cast them away, because they did not hearken unto him: and they shall be wanderers among the nations” (Hosea 5:3-4; 7:11-12; 9:17).
The Plain Truth’s question is today more pressing than ever: What will it take to wake up the people of Britain?
Britain Bows Out
Today there is little doubt that the “ominous potentialities” that Mr. Armstrong warned about are coming to pass. Politically, economically and judicially, Britain is finding itself weakened and increasingly subservient to the EU.
This is what Mr. Armstrong said would happen—decades ago. Mr. Armstrong concluded that 1973 article by writing, “Britain’s entry into the European Community portends a tragic situation.”
The tragedy of that situation is becoming more evident today.
Mr. Armstrong’s prophecies are being fulfilled at a stunning pace. In the 2010 edition of this booklet, we wrote: “Some Britons have adapted to the EU’s rules and regulations, but many have not—and friction between the EU and Britain is growing. Additionally, the strain of global economic conditions—which Britain and much of Europe have differing opinions on how best to handle—are hastening the inevitability of a divorce between London and Brussels.” In the time since then, Britons have become sharply more disenchanted with EU policies that strip Britain of power and force it into subservience. An Opinium/Observer poll released in January 2013 found that of the general British public, “53 percent agreed that the UK should withdraw … while 19 percent disagreed.”
Proceedings for the divorce between London and Brussels began on December 9, 2011. That was the day British Prime Minister David Cameron shocked the world by vetoing a Franco-German plan to fix Europe’s debt crisis. Standing before an audience of European leaders who were determined to change treaties in a way that would make EU nations cede more power to Europe, Mr. Cameron defended British interests. “What’s on offer is not in Britain’s interest,” he said, “so I didn’t agree to it.”
Mr. Cameron’s decision infuriated European leaders. The Financial Times quoted one senior EU official telling reporters, “This is going to cost the UK dearly. They have antagonized everyone.” Prominent German mep Alexander Graf Lambsdorff said it meant that it had been a “mistake to admit the British into the European Union” to begin with.
Around the world, analysts reported that after Mr. Cameron’s decision it was inevitable that Britain would become a second-rate power within the EU, and that it would eventually leave. “Britain took a massive step toward quitting the EU,” the Daily Express wrote on December 10, 2011.
Tellingly, Britain’s veto did not stop Germany and the rest of the EU from deciding to forge ahead with the treaty changes. Spiegel Online said that, in deciding to advance despite London’s protests, Europe’s leaders sent a piercing message to Britain: “The European project cannot be allowed to collapse because of the UK’s obstinate attitude towards the debt crisis” (Dec. 9, 2011). In other words, European integration is going to happen with or without you!
Mr. Cameron took another great stride toward divorce from the EU on January 23, 2013, when he announced plans for a simple “in or out” referendum. The announcement came at a time when dissatisfaction with the EU was rising throughout Britain. Mr. Cameron promised that, if his party were to win the next election in 2015, then a decision on EU membership would go to the ballot box.
Mr. Cameron’s party did win that election, and nearly a year later, Britain voted to leave the European Union. While the Brexit process officially began with the referendum vote of June 23, 2016, Britain’s complete exit from the EU might take a couple of years. Yet some of the EU’s leaders have expressed their willingness to hasten that process and move on—without Britain.
In numerous articles, Mr. Armstrong made clear that Britain’s dalliance with Europe would end. “The stage is all set!” he wrote in 1956. “All that’s lacking now is the strong leader—the coming führer! The Germans are coming back from the destruction of World War ii in breathtaking manner. Germany is the economic and military heart of Europe. Probably Germany will lead and dominate the coming United States of Europe. But Britain will be no part of it!”
Herbert Armstrong warned for decades that Britain would not be a part of the coming final resurrection of the German-led Holy Roman Empire. Even as British Prime Minister Edward Heath deceitfully ramrodded his country into the Economic Community in 1973, Mr. Armstrong warned that it was an experiment doomed to failure, and that the British—as many are doing right now—would look back on that day as a “tragically historic date.”
The reality is undeniable. He was right.
America Has Won Its Last War
If that prediction seems bold now, how bold would it have been in 1950?
During his long ministry, Herbert Armstrong often told the story of a campaign rally he attended in the autumn of 1916.
The event was in support of Woodrow Wilson, 28th president of the United States, who was then campaigning for reelection. Mr. Armstrong said that during the rally, he stood no more than six feet away from Theodore Roosevelt, who had been president before Wilson.
Wilson’s supporters chanted his campaign slogan: “He kept us out of war!”
It was true that Wilson had kept America from entering the First World War for many months. His primary defense had been a series of handwritten notes to the kaiser, pleading for the German leader to stop sinking American ships and shooting Americans.
At a certain point in the rally, Mr. Armstrong heard Roosevelt utter some contemptuous words that always stuck with him: “If I had been president, I would send the kaiser just one note—and he would have known that I meant it.”
Mr. Armstrong told that story often because it perfectly illustrated a message he repeated for decades after World War ii. The message was that too many of America’s post-World War ii leaders were of Wilson’s weak ilk, and too few had the kind of pride in America’s power embodied by Theodore Roosevelt.
Mr. Armstrong’s message was that, after World War ii, the United States had lost the will to use its power. He knew, with conviction, that it was true because of understanding that God revealed to him based on key Bible passages. Fueled by this understanding, shortly after World War ii, Mr. Armstrong boldly prophesied that the United States of America had won its last war.
Korea and Cuba
After victory in World War ii, the Korean War was the first in a long line of non-victories for the United States. When hostilities broke out in 1950, President Harry Truman gave command of American forces to Gen. Douglas MacArthur, World War ii hero. From the outset, MacArthur was free to cross the 38th parallel to invade North Korea. But when China’s Communist forces joined the side of the enemy, U.S. forces were sent reeling. MacArthur urged Washington to approve a full-scale attack on China, telling one congressman that “there is no substitute for victory.” But his plea fell on deaf ears. Truman fired MacArthur in 1951, and the war eventually settled to a stalemate with both sides suffering huge numbers of casualties.
The Korean War ended the career of America’s last great general. It also marked the beginning of a new era in American battle strategy: limited warfare.
The Bay of Pigs incident was a good example of this new strategy. President John F. Kennedy kick-started this political-military disaster. In 1961, more than 1,400 Cuban exiles, trained by the Central Intelligence Agency, landed on Cuba’s shores hoping to spark a popular uprising. But without U.S. naval and air support, Castro’s troops easily crushed the rebellion. Nearly all of the U.S.-led invaders were killed in battle or died in Castro’s prisons years later.
After the Bay of Pigs debacle, Mr. Armstrong wrote in the January 1963 Plain Truth that the U.S. should have driven Castro and communism out of Cuba. Since it did not, Mr. Armstrong asked, “Is the United States going to find that, having left Castro and godless communism on the American doorstep, it is going to continue causing us every kind of trouble and harassment?”
The decades since then have shown that it indeed has.
Mr. Armstrong pinned the blame not on the U.S. military, nor even President Kennedy, but on the American people! He wrote in the October 1961 Plain Truth, “Unless or until the United States as a whole repents and returns to what has become a hollow slogan on its dollars: ‘In God we trust,’ the United States of America has won its last war!
“I said that when we failed to win in Korea! … I say it again, now that the United States government endorsed this Cuban fiasco—its president gave the ‘go ahead’—and God, the God America has deserted, gave it its most humiliating defeat! What does the Cuban debacle mean?
“It means, Mr. and Mrs. United States, that the handwriting is on your wall!”
Those are strong words! Yet their full weight and power were not known until the U.S. became involved in its next major conflict.
The Vietnam Spectacle
As early as November 1961, the Plain Truth informed readers that the U.S. would “almost certainly” have to fight a major battle in Vietnam. Sure enough, in 1964, America began sending troops there.
Several analysts at the time realized that a war in Vietnam was imminent, but only Mr. Armstrong was absolutely confident about how it would end. In April 1965, just months after hostilities broke out, the Plain Truth blared this headline: “Why United States Cannot Win Vietnam War!”
The article said, “The United States is committed not to win in Vietnam! … The late Gen. Douglas MacArthur once stated that unless a nation entered into a battle with victory as its goal, it was defeated before it started. He was right!
“Make no mistake about it—the U.S. and the other nations involved in support of South Vietnam would like to win! But they are afraid to take the action necessary to win!”
A year and a half later, Mr. Armstrong wrote, “The United States is not winning. Yet the war has been stepped up enormously during 1966. People see no results. People compare the size and power of the United States to that of North Vietnam—a little country hardly the size of one of our states, such as Florida. They can’t understand why the United States—the most powerful military nation in the world—can’t whip little North Vietnam” (Plain Truth, January 1967).
The war lasted another eight years, ending in the shameful evacuation of American officials from the rooftop of the U.S. Embassy in Saigon, South Vietnam. It was the longest war in America’s history, and was the nation’s most humiliating defeat. Historian Paul Johnson called it a “collapse of American power.”
During those years, the Plain Truth often touched on another Vietnam casualty—that of American honor worldwide. Mr. Armstrong wrote, “No military nation can operate a military force, by accepting defeat in an enemy attack, on the excuse we wanted to save the lives of men who had offered those lives to protect our honor and our freedom! … How many more lives will yet be lost in future battles because enemies will now be emboldened by this display of weakness to anticipate easy victories over a United States that is afraid to fight?” (January 1969).
Indeed, the war in Vietnam gave America’s reputation as a superpower quite a beating. The Plain Truth pointed this out in February 1978 and then made this stunning prediction: “The days are over when the military might of the United States is used to accomplish what America perceives as correct and proper. … America’s influence and prestige is on the rapid decline. The pride of our power has been broken. The time is fast approaching when the United States will be so weak and so fearful of its own shadow that, as the Prophet Ezekiel predicted, the trumpet will sound the call to battle, but none shall answer (Ezekiel 7:14).”
There could have been no more accurate prediction of the years that followed.
If the Korean War marked the start of the limited warfare strategy, America’s ignominious defeat in Vietnam marked the beginning of its anti-warfare strategy. Nothing illustrated this aversion to danger like the Iran hostage crisis.
In November 1979, a band of Iranian revolutionists stormed the American Embassy in Tehran and captured 52 U.S. staff members. President Jimmy Carter repeatedly demanded that Tehran return the captives, but Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini said he was beating an empty drum. “Carter does not have the guts to engage in a military operation,” Khomeini taunted. Carter’s only show of “force” was a bungled rescue attempt in April 1980 that left the bodies of eight U.S. servicemen burning in the Iranian desert. Television cameras captured the images for all to see. It was another humiliating defeat. Iran held the world’s greatest superpower at bay for another eight months after the botched rescue mission. One wonders how Theodore Roosevelt would have handled the situation.
With more conservative leadership during the 1980s, some might argue that America regained some of the pride in its power. President Ronald Reagan sent troops to Grenada in 1983 to stamp out communism from the West Indies. In 1986, he bombed Col. Muammar Qadhafi’s military headquarters in Libya in response to a terrorist act. These small skirmishes, however, hardly qualify as decisive military victories for the United States. (The population of Grenada, after all, is slightly smaller than Fargo, North Dakota.) If anything, they revealed an increasingly gun-shy America willing to use its military might only in small, relatively risk-free conflicts.
Consider Lebanon. In October 1983, an Islamic terrorist rammed a truck packed with explosives into Marine barracks in Beirut, killing 241 Americans. Four months later, President Reagan withdrew all U.S. troops, a move that all but dissolved the Lebanese Christian power structure.
After that fiasco—which was yet another embarrassing U.S. retreat—the Plain Truth was quick to remind readers of what it had been saying for decades. The November-December 1983 issue included an article titled “Why America Has Won Its Last War.” In it, Mr. Armstrong’s book The United States and Britain in Prophecy was quoted: “[T]he United States, even still possessing unmatched power, is afraid—fears—to use it, just as God said ….”
The Gulf War ‘Victory’
If ever there was a conflict that could have proven Mr. Armstrong’s prediction wrong, surely it would have been the Persian Gulf War. Even Mr. Armstrong’s own church pointed to this war (several years after he died) as justification to back away from the “America has won its last war” prediction. “[W]e were wrong,” wrote Mr. Armstrong’s successor, Joseph Tkach, in a co-worker letter dated March 25, 1991.
But the fledgling Philadelphia Trumpet magazine did not agree with the Plain Truth’s new message. Instead we clung tenaciously to the forecasts of Mr. Armstrong. “America Has Won Its Last War,” we declared on the cover of the May 1991 Trumpet, shortly after the Gulf War ended.
After a short ground invasion, the Bush i administration claimed victory in the war. But Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry firmly challenged that assessment. It is true that, until 1991, the world had never witnessed such an awesome display of technologically advanced firepower. Yet despite this show of force, the Persian Gulf War was not one “that tested the U.S. will,” he wrote.
“The truth is we won a battle in Kuwait. We did not win a war. The job was left unfinished,” Mr. Flurry wrote. “Saddam Hussein is still in power—even stronger in some ways—and has turned Iraq into a killing field. Isn’t [that] a sign we didn’t win the war? That we lacked the will to win as it says in Leviticus 26:19?” What the U.S. did was essentially kick a massive problem down the road. “[This] will probably plague and haunt President Bush and America for the rest of our lives!” he wrote. A look at the darkening chaos in Iraq today shows that prediction to have been startlingly accurate.
Mr. Flurry was most critical of how, after encouraging the Kurds and Shiites to rise up against Saddam Hussein, the Bush administration abandoned them. Hussein then restarted his murderous rampage against these peoples, creating a humanitarian disaster. Mr. Flurry called this “the greatest betrayal in U.S. history.” “President Bush’s ‘new world order’ has brought some of the greatest shame on our nation’s history!” he wrote. “American leaders say the U.S. has no UN mandate to interfere in Iraq on the refugees’ behalf. This statement alone shows that we lack the will to use our power for a just cause. And if the Iraqi refugee crisis isn’t a just cause, nothing is!”
The following statement—which Mr. Flurry wrote well over two decades ago—powerfully summarizes the trepidation that has saturated America’s foreign policy in recent decades, not just in Iraq, but also Afghanistan, Ukraine and beyond: “America still fears getting bogged down in a Vietnam-type civil war in Iraq. Even after we had them almost defenseless! That is because God has broken the pride of our power—our will to win! … America must come to see they are under a curse from God and repent of their sins.”
The fact that American actions in the 1991 Gulf War betrayed the Kurds and Shiites and left Saddam Hussein in power shows that it was, at best, another stalemate for the United States.
And the years that followed revealed even more powerfully how deeply broken America’s pride in its power is. Remember the U.S.’s “nation building” effort in Somalia in 1993? It only took 29 American casualties to scrap that mission. Then the 1996 bombing of Khobar Towers in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia, prompted a $353 million retreat further into the Saudi desert. When terrorists blew up U.S. embassies in Dar es Salaam and Nairobi in 1998, President Bill Clinton responded with a wrist slap: a cruise missile strike on suspected terrorist facilities.
The United States even backed away from a conflict in Haiti, one of the poorest nations in the world. A U.S. naval assault ship was actually held at bay by a small mob of Haitians at Port au Prince in 1993. The U.S. scrapped the mission because it feared casualties.
The War on Terror
On September 11, 2001, the U.S. experienced the deadliest attack on American soil since Pearl Harbor. Islamist terrorists killed nearly 3,000 people and plunged the U.S. into full-blown war.
From the start, this war was doomed to fail. Consider, to begin, the very definition America gave to it. Entrapped in political correctness, and thus uncomfortable with any unfavorable portrayals of Islam, America’s leaders defined it as a “war on terror.” This is confusing. Terror is not an enemy, but a tactic. Failing to clearly identify Islamist extremism and its chief sponsor nations as the enemy is like defining World War ii as a “war on blitzkrieg” so as not to directly implicate Germany.
Characterizations of the “terrorist threat” as vague, shadowy, elusive and ubiquitous were also misleading. The threat emanates predominantly from a few nations, such as Saudi Arabia and, above all, Iran. Just as the collapse of the ussr overnight reduced the communist threat, ending state support of Islamist terrorism would all but end terrorism.
The trouble is, Iran has allies: most notably, Russia and China. Afghanistan was friendless and powerless—so the U.S. selected it (or, more accurately, the Taliban) as the first target in the “war on terror.” In terms of contributing to global terrorism, the Taliban was insignificant compared to Iran, but this is the trouble one runs into after failing to properly define the enemy.
America’s subsequent attack on Iraq (or, more accurately, Saddam Hussein) was even more problematic, because it eliminated the single greatest check on Iran, virtually guaranteeing the eventual ascendancy of the Islamic Republic.
As a result of America’s failure to correctly define the enemy, in the years since 2001, the U.S. has effectively done nothing to target Iran or degrade its support of terrorism. The “war on terror” has actually left Iran stronger. Iran has directed, funded, armed and personally assisted in the Hamas and Hezbollah attacks that transformed Israel and Lebanon into battlegrounds.
Iran tests weapons capable of carrying nuclear payloads and regularly calls for Israel to be “wiped off the map.” Yet the United States still tries to reason and negotiate with Iran. As a senior official from the Israeli prime minister’s office said, “While the world is discussing where and when the next meeting with Iran will be, Iran is rapidly advancing towards obtaining a nuclear bomb.”
Even if the U.S. had won a decisive victory in its campaigns in Afghanistan and Iraq, it would still be far from winning the war on terror. As long as the chief sponsor of Islamist terrorism, the Islamic Republic of Iran, is still in business, the war on terror has not been won.
But the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq were far from victories for the United States. In Afghanistan the Taliban is making a comeback, and the U.S. is even involved in peace talks with the regime it tried to overthrow. Worse, the Taliban has taken over great swaths of Pakistan, putting the entire country, and its nuclear arsenal, in danger. It was in Pakistan on May 2, 2011, that U.S. troops found and executed Osama bin Laden, the leader of al Qaeda and top terrorist on the U.S. most wanted list. Bin Laden’s death may be cause for celebration for many, but it doesn’t leave the world any safer. Bin Laden was the head of al Qaeda, not of global terrorism.
On May 27, 2014, U.S. President Barack Obama announced that U.S. combat operations in Afghanistan would officially end in December 2014. A small residual force would temporarily remain in the country for training purposes, he said, but all U.S. forces would be removed from Afghanistan by the end of 2016.
In Iraq, America’s loss is even more apparent. Washington actually pursued dialogue with Iran, soliciting its help in bringing the bog in Iraq under control by reining in the Shiites. It also has considered joining forces with Iran in order to combat the Islamic State, the Sunni terrorist group now in control of great swaths of Iraq and Syria. In order to tidy up its business in Iraq, the “superpower” United States requested aid from the world’s top state sponsor of terror!
In fact, far from winning the war on terror, America is in the process of surrendering Iraq to Iran!
“The most powerful [Muslim] country in the Middle East is Iran,” Mr. Flurry wrote in an article titled “Is Iraq About to Fall to Iran?” in 1994. “Can you imagine the power they would have if they gained control of Iraq, the second-largest oil producing country in the world?”
Far from winning the war on terror, America has built up a terrorist-sponsoring superpower!
Even more shameful has been America’s foreign policy in Europe. Its myriad infirmities have been well documented in both the Trumpet and the Plain Truth.
Just four years after World War ii ended, Mr. Armstrong wrote, “But while trusting, gullible Uncle Sam, always unable to see more than one enemy at a time, has been busy worrying about Russia, the real menace has been making diabolical and rapid headway—under cover—in Europe!” (Plain Truth, November 1949). In the June 1952 Plain Truth, Mr. Armstrong likened America’s bungling foreign policy in Europe to creating a Frankenstein monster that would eventually turn on its maker.
Gerald Flurry used that same analogy in the September-October 1995 Trumpet. He wrote about how the U.S. strongly opposed the recognition of the breakaway Yugoslav republics of Slovenia and Croatia in 1991. Yet, in the face of German pressure, the United States caved in, and offered its tacit approval. America’s recognition of those two states was the spark that ignited a succession of wars within the Balkan region during the 1990s.
Croatia sided with the Nazis during World War ii. The Croatian leader that Germany supported in 1991, Franjo Tudjman, was himself well documented as being a Nazi sympathizer. When war erupted, Croatia proceeded to rid its territory of Serbian people. Carl Bildt, former European Community mediator in the Balkans, called it the “most efficient ethnic cleansing we’ve seen in the Balkans.”
America had effectively given its full support to the wrong side—and few commentators besides the Trumpet said anything about it.
The Trumpet has been blaring this warning for some years now. During the war in Kosovo, we exposed a further breakdown of U.S. willpower: “[G]iven the apparent lack of will to effectively deploy its military might to actually win a victory [for the right side] in its numerous military adventures in recent years, why bother to deploy force at all …?” (Trumpet, May 1999). The U.S.-led bombing campaign, in the long run, will end up hurting America far more than it did Serbia. This trend for America to often support the wrong side will have a disastrous end, according to biblical prophecy.
By the time the Ukrainian crisis erupted in 2014, America’s broken military will was on full display for the entire world to see. In the early 1990s, Ukraine had one of the most advanced nuclear arsenals in the world. With some 5,000 weapons, it was the third largest on the planet. But that changed in 1994 when the leaders of the U.S., UK and Russia signed an agreement with Ukraine: Kiev agreed to give up its nuclear weapons in exchange for a promise from these countries to uphold Ukraine’s territorial integrity.
Article i of the Budapest Memorandum says, “The United States of America, the Russian Federation and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, reaffirm their commitment to Ukraine … to respect the independence and sovereignty and the existing borders of Ukraine.” Those “existing borders” included the Crimean Peninsula, as well as Donetsk and Luhansk in Ukraine’s east. When Russia annexed Crimea in the spring of 2014, and actively worked to destabilize the other two regions, it directly violated this deal. And the U.S., by failing to use its power against Russia, failed to live up to the spirit of its promise. Nuclear-free Ukraine is now defenseless.
So, was Mr. Armstrong right to declare after World War ii that “America has won its last war”? Looking from Korea to Cuba to Vietnam to Iran to Lebanon to Somalia to Kosovo to Iraq to Afghanistan to Ukraine, the answer is clear. All these episodes constitute clear American political and military defeats.
Blessings and Curses
There is a reason Mr. Armstrong correctly forecast after World War ii that America would lose the will to use its power and never again win a war. He knew that when God threatened in Leviticus 26:19 to “break the pride of your power,” He was referring primarily to Britain and the United States in this modern age.
The irony is that the same God who promised to break our pride is the one who gave this tremendous power in the first place. God blessed America with unprecedented material wealth because He promised it, unconditionally, to Abraham. He did so because of Abraham’s obedience to God’s laws. That is why, up until World War ii, our peoples were richly blessed. (All of this is thoroughly explained in The United States and Britain in Prophecy. Request your free copy for further explanation.)
Today, however, because of rampant sin and disobedience to His law, God is turning those blessings into curses. God gave us every imaginable good, but what have we done with those blessings? Let Mr. Armstrong explain: “Like Rome, we’ve grown fat and prosperous and lazy. … We’re the wealthiest, as compared to any other nation, and we are fast growing lazy and soft, seeking luxury and pleasure, and excitement, idleness and ease, labor-saving, step-saving devices and gadgets” (Plain Truth, February 1956). That applies today far more than it did in 1956!
Amid all this material prosperity, we have forgotten God. In fact, we increasingly see examples of active, intentional, malicious hostility toward God—a movement to systematically eliminate God from public life—to establish godlessness as the state religion! But even during those instances in which God receives a token mention, He is never acknowledged as a lawgiver, or even as a moral authority. In modern society, we feel accountable only to ourselves.
This is the reason God is now cursing the peoples of Britain and the United States. America’s string of military-political defeats since World War ii is proof of those curses! America has indeed won its last war. It was true in 1950—and true all the more so now.
Our immense wealth added to our broken will is a dangerous combination. As Mr. Armstrong wrote in the June 1954 Plain Truth, aggressor nations covet that wealth. Seeing our weakness and reluctance to use our power only intensifies the desire of these aggressor nations to take that wealth—as soon as they are strong enough to do so.
That will happen—and much sooner than you might think. That is what Herbert Armstrong foresaw.
Mr. Armstrong concluded an article in the October 1954 Plain Truth with these words: “How any American—any English-speaking inheritor of God’s choicest material blessings—can, in face of such stupendous, overwhelming fulfillment of prophecy—such awe-inspiring demonstration of the power and might and faithfulness of Almighty God—accept and partake of these blessings, and then carelessly ignore God’s warning that our sins today are increasing, or fail to get to his knees before the great Almighty, and repent, and intercede in heartrending prayer for all Israelite nations, and help in every way he can to warn our people now of their impending peril, seems impossible to conceive.
“God warns us through prophecy that our sins are fast increasing. And now the day of reckoning is here! The foreign sword already has attacked us. In this fearful awesome atomic age, World War iii will start with atomic bombs dropped on [such cities as] London, Birmingham, Manchester, Liverpool, New York, Washington, Philadelphia, Detroit, Chicago, Pittsburgh—without warning!
“God help our nations to wake up before it’s too late!”
It is clear now that our broken-willed nations will not wake up to these ever more imminent threats. But you, as an individual, still can.
The friendship between the U.S. and Europe is not what it appears to be.
Who would have thought, after the savagery of World War ii, that America and Germany would become allies? Yet, soon after the smoke from that massive conflict cleared, Washington and Bonn laid the foundation for close partnership. The United States established the Marshall Plan to rebuild Western Europe, especially Germany, and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization was launched, binding Europe and North America into a military alliance.
Biblical prophecy shows that this union was destined, from the beginning, to end in ruin. The fraying of the transatlantic relationship we see today is the advancement of this inevitable ruin.
Herbert W. Armstrong was well acquainted with the Bible scriptures elucidating that truth. Under his guidance, the Plain Truth understood that the transatlantic alliance would eventually rupture. “Economic recovery masks deep divisions that must eventually rip asunder the Atlantic alliance,” the Plain Truth wrote in September 1983.
In the decades since that article was written, the prophecy has greatly accelerated toward its fulfillment.
‘Can We Purchase Love With Money?’
In early 1952, as America began allowing Germany to rearm, Mr. Armstrong’s Good News magazine explained why the decision was misguided:
“The question … is causing careful observers to tremble! Does America dare arm Germany?
“Can we unite Europe and guide the colossal military machine we envision there by 1955? … Our leading generals in Europe adamantly warn that Germany is a calculated risk. What will a Germany, armed with American help, think of her new power? … Why will the diplomats think that today the hearts of the people in Germany are different from yesterday? Every one of those undemocratic nations when once armed has turned upon us. We are the hated ‘have’ nations, the ‘capitalist’ nations, the ‘imperialistic’ nations.
“The heart of the German people … has not been converted to our way of life. If they really would have come to love us since their defeat, would they now be trying to bargain for domination in Europe, and threatening to withhold support from the cause of democracy against Russia? Is that the way love is manifested? Can we purchase love with money?” (Good News, April 1952; emphasis added).
That was written over six decades ago! Even back in 1952, Germany was fighting for domination of Europe—and America didn’t understand what it meant or chose not to understand. That has been Germany’s goal from the beginning.
Notice, though, how that article pinpointed the problem of America trying to buy Germany’s “love.” Prophecy reveals that this specific tendency, which has grown considerably stronger in the decades since, was doomed from the start.
The Plain Truth wrote this in February 1956: “America seems wedded to the idea that it can buy friends and allies around the world with ready American cash. We intend to hold friendly nations to us by generously supplying money and arms. But it isn’t working!”
The veracity of that statement is undeniable today. Consider the billions of dollars Washington has spent to try to buy allies such as Pakistan, Egypt and Afghanistan—nations that march toward radicalism regardless. American money has been pumped into numerous causes in South America, Asia and several other arenas. But none of this largesse has increased support for American policies or earned a jot of respect. The money isn’t talking. Now America is out of cash and has actually become desperate for foreign money to support its broken economy. These humanitarian efforts are a trap.
But biblical prophecy points in particular to the danger of America seeking an alliance with Germany. You can read about the specific scriptures containing these Bible prophecies in our booklets Nahum: An End-Time Prophecy for Germany and Ezekiel: The End-Time Prophet. (All of our literature is free upon request.)
Scripture reveals that America would first try to strengthen this ill-fated relationship by pumping dollars into it, as the Plain Truth article quoted above said. In the late 1990s and early 2000s, this impulse led America—under the auspices of nato—to act as a willing lackey of Germany in the terrible Balkan Wars. The U.S.’s desire to please Germany in those wars ended up breaking the Yugoslav Republic into pieces, and transforming the former Yugoslav states into virtual colonies of the rising German-led EU empire.
On December 1, 2009, America’s ambassador to Germany publicly declared that Germany is “Washington’s most important ally.” He said, “We need strong partners—and nowhere are there better or more committed partners than in Europe. And Germany is the centerpiece of the European Union.”
On February 2, 2013, Vice President Joe Biden echoed these sentiments in his keynote address to European leaders at the Munich Security Conference: “Simply put, President Obama and I continue to believe that Europe is the cornerstone of our engagement with the rest of the world, and is the catalyst for our global cooperation. It’s that basic.”
“A strong and capable Europe is profoundly in America’s interest, and I might add, presumptuously, the world’s interest,” Biden said. “Europe remains America’s indispensable partner of first resort,” he continued.
America no longer looks to Britain and its commonwealth for support. Instead U.S. leaders are trying to build up Europe. Even President Barack Obama urges Europeans to assume “the burdens of global leadership.” America thoroughly trusts Europe and sees the relationship as mutually beneficial. Europe, however, has a different view.
‘A More Balanced Relationship’
When Europe’s commissioner for external affairs said, upon President Obama’s inauguration, that he anticipated a “more balanced relationship” between Europe and America, he meant balanced in favor of more power for Europe and less for America.
And as Mr. Armstrong predicted would happen, the EU’s antipathy toward America became more evident in the shadow of the global economic downturn that occurred in 2008. Europe blames the Anglo-American economic model for the crisis. It has taken draconian steps to smother New York’s and London’s financial leadership and to shift the global financial center to Brussels/Berlin. It has seized the lead as the world’s number one financial regulator, and has exacted harsh penalties on giant American companies including Intel, Google and Microsoft, forcing these firms to play by European rules. As a direct consequence of the economic crash, all G-20 nations have agreed to permit the EU-controlled Financial Stability Board to influence their economies.
The year 2013 began with the EU and U.S. announcing that they would begin talks to build a transatlantic trade agreement—something that has often been called “an economic nato.” The negotiations will be laborious, but if successful, will bind the economies of America and Europe together. European Commission President José Manuel Barroso said at a February 13, 2013, press conference that “this negotiation will set the standard—not only for our future bilateral trade and investment, including regulatory issues, but also for the development of global trade rules.”
At first glance this may appear to be a mutually beneficial development, but such a deal could prove fatal for America’s economic sovereignty. Proposals say the laws regulating this new transatlantic trade would be prepared by a joint council of senior-level representatives from “the EU Commission’s Secretariat General and the U.S. Office for Information and Regulatory Affairs.” This would effectively transfer some level of U.S. sovereignty to a Transatlantic Regulatory Cooperation Council. This could be a huge development. Once America and the EU establish a standard, it would effectively become the world standard because other nations would have to comply if they wanted to trade with the U.S./EU. And if Europe gains the upper hand in negotiations—and Europe is expert at gaining the upper hand—then the EU will become the global pacesetter.
America has already subjected itself to Europe’s economic rule. It has placed enormous faith in Europe’s beneficence and sense of fair play.
Where is this leading? Again let’s turn to the prophetically guided forecasting of Mr. Armstrong’s Plain Truth for the startling answer!
A Turbulent Undercurrent
The March 1974 Plain Truth said, “European antagonism toward the United States and its policies is now in the open. The next few years will bring forth more misunderstanding, conflicts of interest and, at times, outright hostility between the United States and Europe. Europe—including [then] West Germany—will have to build its own unified armed forces, including nuclear weapons. Religious as well as political forces will play a key role in the future.”
The trend that began with the Balkan wars—of Europe co-opting American power via nato in order to serve its own interests—continues. Europe’s machinations have radically mutated nato from its original role as a protector and defender of the democracies of the U.S., Britain, Canada and Western Europe. Now it is becoming ever more linked with the EU in pursuing that empire’s underlying Romish/Teutonic objectives.
The U.S. has so far lent its power to such causes without much objection. And now German military goals are increasingly intertwined into nato’s new “strategic concept.”
The surface of the U.S.-German relationship often appears placid. But the undercurrent of what Mr. Armstrong called “conflicts of interest” and “outright hostility” is becoming ever more turbulent.
The turbulence has become especially stark since 2013 when revelations emerged that the U.S. National Security Agency (nsa) extensively spies on Germany, including wiretapping the phone of Chancellor Angela Merkel, and collecting mountains of digital data from Germans. Some dismissed these revelations as insignificant. But it caused the greatest crisis of confidence in relations between Germany and the U.S. in decades.
German society—which is highly sensitive to the matter of data protection—reacted strongly to news of the nsa surveillance. A July 2013 ard survey of the German public showed that its trust in the U.S. had plummeted from 76 percent in November 2009 to 49 percent. By that November, the number of Germans who believed America is a reliable partner for Germany stood at only 35 percent. More than 60 percent of Germans view Edward Snowden—the man who illegally exposed America’s spying on Germany—as a hero. So far, since U.S. intelligence services have a technological advantage, the German government has continued cooperation with Washington. But Berlin is now making concerted efforts to change the legal basis of this cooperation.
The nsa revelation was hardly the beginning of the rift in German-U.S. relations, but it greatly deepened it.
A Nuclear Power?
Consider this additional grave concern: Under the auspices of nato, the U.S. has hundreds of B-61 nuclear gravity bombs stored in European countries. “The U.S. has supplied some 480 B-61 thermonuclear bombs to five so-called ‘non-nuclear states,’ including Belgium, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Turkey,” Global Research wrote in February 2010.
As Europe cannibalizes nato, we should not be surprised if it devours these nuclear weapons as well. The air forces of each of these nato nations have personnel trained in arming and delivering this hardware. The increasing merger of the defense goals shared by nato and the EU has added to the rapid drawdown of U.S. forces from Europe. This removes obstacles for Europe to deploy a nuclear-armed international force.
What did Mr. Armstrong say about this prospect? He spoke boldly about the weapons of mass destruction America has stored in Europe.
“You may be sure the West European leaders are conferring hurriedly and secretly about how and how soon they may unite and provide a united European military force so they can defend themselves!” Mr. Armstrong wrote in the April 1980 Plain Truth. “And so they will no longer have to give in meekly to Russia! And who will they blame for their humiliation and their necessity now to have a united Europe, with a united government, a common currency, and a common military force as great or greater than either the ussr or the U.S.A.? They will blame the United States! And when they are strong enough to assert themselves, [they] will first attack Britain for standing firm with the United States, and then they will return a lot of hydrogen bombs the U.S. has stored now in Europe!”
That, shockingly, is the ultimate fate of the American-European relationship!
Modern Europe is rapidly growing independent of the U.S. and is strengthening its position as a world power, just as the Plain Truth prophesied. The growing rift between the U.S. and the EU is tipping the power balance decisively in Europe’s—particularly Germany’s—favor. This should stir the deepest alarm within America’s leaders, if they only knew where it was leading! They ignore Mr. Armstrong’s warnings at their peril.
Changing of the Guard
The decline of U.S.-British control over the world’s sea gates
Prior to World War ii, Britain and the United States controlled every major sea gate in the world: Panama, Hong Kong, Suez, Cape of Good Hope, Malta, Papua New Guinea, Timor, West Indies, Gibraltar, Falklands, Cyprus, Gulf of Guinea, Maldives, Sri Lanka, Singapore, Gulf of Aden and others. These “gates,” as they are called in the Bible, were major factors in the economic success of the British and American people and were indispensable to Allied success during World War ii. Since that time, however, the U.S. and Britain have, without a fight, surrendered their control as gatekeepers.
Herbert W. Armstrong listed a few of the most strategic passageways in the October 1954 Plain Truth: the Panama Canal, Suez, Singapore, Cyprus and Gibraltar. The U.S. and Britain gained control of these and many others after 1800 because of the unconditional birthright promises God made to Abraham’s seed. One of the major blessings promised to modern-day Israel (the U.S. and Britain primarily) was controlling the “gates” of their enemies (Genesis 22:17; 24:60). The fact that our peoples acquired these strategic gateways itself proves our biblical identity. “We must be modern Israel,” Mr. Armstrong wrote.
Further proof can be found in the fact that our peoples have since lost control of those passageways—because that is precisely what God said would happen. Mr. Armstrong wrote in 1980, “As the ‘pride of our power’ continues to be broken, as the British continue to lose their foreign sea gates and possessions around the Earth, as America signs away ownership of the Panama Canal—control over this vital sea gate … this focal prophecy alone represents giant proof as to where the modern ‘remnant’ of the peoples of Israel resides today!” (The United States and Britain in Prophecy).
Since Mr. Armstrong understood that the Bible prophesied the latter-day rise and fall of the American and British peoples, the Plain Truth was able to predict the loss of several vital sea gates well in advance of their occurrence.
The ‘Highway to India’
“The British are giving the Suez back to Egypt,” the October 1954 Plain Truth said. Less than two years later, on July 26, 1956, President Gamal Abdel Nasser of Egypt took a calculated gamble and seized control of the canal from the British. Two weeks later, on August 5, Mr. Armstrong wrote an article that appeared in the September 1956 Plain Truth. He said the Suez crisis was of “life-and-death concern for Great Britain.” The British Empire, he explained, had attained greatness largely because of its vast shipping by sea. “If Nasser now can take over and retain Suez, Britain’s lifeline is severed.” In effect, Mr. Armstrong was saying it would signal the end of the British Empire.
“To allow the canal to become the complete property of Egypt, with all rights of control, operation and management in Nasser’s power,” Mr. Armstrong wrote, “would only give this upstart dictator a weapon by which he could sever the very lifeline of the British Commonwealth of Nations …. The Suez Canal is one of the major factors in [Britain and America’s] growth to economic power and national greatness never before equaled by any nation.”
Nearly three months after that article was written, on October 31, British and French forces invaded Egypt for the purpose of gaining control of the Suez sea gate. But the effort was halfhearted, and Egypt retaliated by sinking 40 of their ships. The United Nations, led by the U.S., then intervened to arrange a “truce”—which amounted to little more than a British defeat. British forces withdrew by the end of the year.
Let us return to the article Mr. Armstrong wrote on August 5, 1956, months before the conflict was resolved. He said, “Britain has lost control of Suez for the rest of this age, and will not be able to gain it back.”
He was right. Britain never regained control of the Suez. The strategic waterway remains under Egyptian ownership and operation. He was also correct to say the clash was of “life-and-death” import for Britain’s empire. Ten years after the Suez crisis, on July 31, 1966, the British Colonial Office in London shut down.
The British Empire was officially dead.
Loss of the ‘Lion City’
The February 1956 Plain Truth declared that Britain was “destined to lose … Singapore.” Seven years later, in 1963, Singapore took a great stride away from Britain by joining the Malaysian Federation. Two years after that, it withdrew from the Federation to unilaterally declare independence. The Plain Truth told its readers that this was yet another British defeat.
Britain had acquired this little island gateway linking the Indian Ocean to the Far East in an 1824 treaty. Singapore had prospered under colonial rule. It had benefited the British as well as the thousands of Chinese and Malay immigrants who flocked there for higher wages. Besides its vital importance during World War ii, the island enclave also enabled the British to keep peace on the Malay Peninsula after the war. By 1960, the British had finally crushed communist attempts to conquer the island.
Just a few years later, however, they surrendered Singapore without a fuss. “Maintaining the security of a vast area of the world is tragically no longer deemed important to many,” the Plain Truth wrote in March 1969. “The British are voluntarily giving up one of the world’s most strategic ‘gates.’”
The ‘Big Ditch’
Before the Panama Canal was dug, only a handful of human endeavors had ever aimed to transform the basic topography of planet Earth. Men had accomplished numerous marvels of engineering—transcontinental railways, mammoth dams and bridges, and breathtaking royal residences—but none had done anything as foundational as slicing apart the very continents.
Several powers over the centuries have recognized the advantages that a canal through Central America would bring—including Spain, Scotland, Germany and France—but none successfully carried out the project. But America, under President Theodore Roosevelt, at a cost of hundreds of millions of dollars and over 5,000 lives, proved capable. Completed in 1914, the 51-mile-long marvel of engineering—designated one of the “Seven Wonders of the Modern World”—halved the time required for ships to sail between the Pacific and Atlantic oceans. It was a great boon to the U.S. and global economies, and also to American morale.
Mr. Armstrong knew, though, that America’s control over it would not last. “America, before this is all over, is going to lose the Panama Canal unless it repents,” the March 1964 Plain Truth said. Again, in November 1965: “The United States has done nothing but hedge, crawl, dodge, yield, relinquish, back down and give up ever since we began to build [the canal]!”
Then, two years before Jimmy Carter signed the controversial treaty with Panama promising U.S. withdrawal by the century’s end, the Plain Truth said, “Going … Going … Gone? … Mark my word: The canal will go—if not soon, eventually” (April 5, 1975).
Knowing God had broken the pride of America’s power, the Plain Truth asked, “Can God keep His word? Has He the power to interfere in the course of nations to break our power? Will God make good on His divine promise of punishment upon our peoples? The answer is a thundering yes!” (November 1965).
It correctly foretold how the U.S. would lose it: “Panama is destined to go—sooner or later. But not in glorious and heroic defeat after faithful resistance—but in utter ignominy. In useless and helpless sacrifice—in disgrace and shame” (ibid).
The Plain Truth was also right about who would fill the power void left in the Canal Zone: “And—irony of ironies—we could even see engineers, pilots and technicians from the Communist world manning the canal jobs vacated by Americans!” (July 1977).
It is astonishing that all of these detailed predictions have now come to pass. Despite having completed the mammoth project that no other world power could complete, the U.S. gave it up without a fight—in utter ignominy. “We have given the farm away without a shot,” Trent Lott, the Senate majority leader at the time of the transfer, said.
It was also people with a Communist history that filled many jobs vacated by Americans. A Hong Kong-based port-facilities company, with tight connections in Beijing, gained control of the canal’s ports of entry and exit—giving China power to decide who enters and exits.
In our January 2000 issue, we reminded our readers about what we have said all along about why the United States lost its most strategic sea gate: “God has ‘broken’ the pride in our power. That is why our people are not stirred by what is happening in Panama. Something is terribly wrong with us! We are afraid to use the power God gave us. … How long must God curse us before we awaken? That is the big question each one of us must answer.”
The ‘Island of Aphrodite’
Cyprus, the largest island in the eastern Mediterranean, has for millennia functioned as a bridge between Europe and the Middle East. Throughout the epochs of history, the strategic chunk of real estate has been controlled by the Hittites, Assyrians, Egyptians, Persians, Greeks, Romans, the Byzantine Empire, Crusaders, Venetians and the Ottomans. Then in the late 1800s, with the agreement of the Ottoman government, Britain took control of the island.
Cyprus’s status as a protectorate of the British Empire ended in 1914 after the Ottomans declared war on the Entente powers, which included Britain. The British annexed the island and it later became an official Crown colony. The “unsinkable aircraft carrier” was a vital hub from which the British could protect the Suez Canal and project power throughout the Mediterranean.
But Mr. Armstrong knew it would not last. Britain “seems destined to lose Cyprus,” the February 1956 Plain Truth said.
The British faced major political problems in trying to keep the Greek-Cypriots and Turkish-Cypriots in harmony and also in attempting to manage pressures for independence from both sides. In April 1957, after Britain’s weakness had been exposed by the Suez debacle, the Brits succumbed to these pressures and decided that “bases in Cyprus” was an acceptable alternative to “Cyprus as a base.” At the stroke of midnight on August 16, 1960, just as Mr. Armstrong predicted, Great Britain surrendered all control of the island.
But Cyprus’s independence didn’t last long.
As the years went by, the European phoenix began to rise from the ashes once again, and, as several of its previous incarnations had done, Europe set its sights on Cyprus. At the Copenhagen Summit in December 2002, Brussels invited Cyprus to join the European Union. Less than two years later, its membership was official.
In March 2013, cash-strapped Cyprus accepted a massive bailout deal from the EU. Spiegel Online said the move meant Cyprus “will effectively lose its sovereignty.” The Trumpet wrote, “This Cyprus takeover marks the beginning of one of the greatest military missions in our time. Cyprus provides an intelligence outpost, a naval base, a launching pad and an aircraft carrier for Europe to send its forces into the Middle East” (May-June 2013).
At present, Cyprus still houses British intelligence installations and radar stations, but, having been engulfed by Europe, the island is effectively under Berlin’s control. The transfer of Cyprus from Britain to Europe provides evidence of the fulfillment of two of Mr. Armstrong’s long-standing major predictions: The UK’s decline and Germany’s rise.
The Rock of Gibraltar
Of the major sea gates Mr. Armstrong mentioned in the October 1954 Plain Truth, only the Rock of Gibraltar has yet to be surrendered. But there is no shortage of evidence to show that Britain’s grip on it is loosening.
“If it were expedient, politically or otherwise, Britain would most probably relinquish Gibraltar,” the Plain Truth declared in September 1974. “In the long run, the British government fully intends to negotiate away Gibraltar,” the August 1982 issue said.
The first chinks in the British armor came to light in 1985 when London and Madrid discussed an agreement to tackle the question of sovereignty over Gibraltar. “For us, this really opens a process of decolonizing the Rock,” the Spanish Foreign Ministry at the time said of the discussions.
Which nation do the people of Gibraltar prefer alignment with? The Rock is actually more patriotically British than anywhere in the British Isles. The Union Jack flutters everywhere on the territory. Fish and chips shops and pubs are ubiquitous. And every time the people—now numbering around 30,000—are asked about the matter, close to 100 percent of them vote to remain under British sovereignty.
But as Spanish demands grow louder, British backbone grows weaker.
In 2002, British Prime Minister Tony Blair tried to hand Gibraltar over to Spain because he viewed it as an annoying “obstacle” hindering a warmer relationship between the UK and the European Union. The secret deal ultimately failed, but Spanish leaders took encouragement from the news and began pushing to allow only Britain and Spain to discuss the sovereignty of the Rock, instead of including Gibraltarian authorities in three-way talks. This formula would allow Madrid to capitalize on the growing British weakness.
In July 2013, Spain ratcheted up its saber-rattling over Gibraltar to a new level, with its Foreign Ministry saying “the party is over” for the peninsula. Madrid unveiled proposals to close Spanish airspace to flights to or from Gibraltar and to impose hefty border fees to anyone entering or leaving the peninsula. The ruckus was mostly an attempt by Spanish politicians to divert attention from Madrid’s faltering economy and scandals, but it shows that Spain has not forgotten about the Rock.
In response to the Spanish frenzy, Peter Hain, who served as minister for Europe under Tony Blair, said that if Britain were to share sovereignty over Gibraltar with Spain there would be “no negatives at all.” Such statements show the faltering will of many Britons to cling to Gibraltar.
In August 2013, Gibraltar’s Panorama discussed another way Britain could lose the Rock. “[I]f the UK votes to withdraw from Europe, [it] could plunge Gibraltar into social, political and economic chaos,” it said. “Gibraltarians are European citizens. If the UK leaves the EU, Gibraltarians will still remain European citizens because you cannot strip a people of their citizenship. Therefore a decolonized, independent Gibraltar, albeit with links to the UK and the British Crown as now, would be a nation of European citizens even if the UK withdrew from the EU. … [W]e’d still be European citizens as too would be the Catalans and indeed the Scots if they too opted for independence from their EU member states. Just where that leaves us is anybody’s guess.” Yes, the specifics are in question, but that scenario would clearly leave Gibraltar outside of Britain’s control.
Whether from Spanish pressure or from Britain’s exit from the EU, it is unlikely that Britain will keep Gibraltar much longer.
Other Major Losses
The February 1956 Plain Truth declared that Britain’s hold on South Africa is slipping fast.” South Africa was a proud possession of the British Empire, controlling the waterway around the southern tip of Africa. But the expulsion of South Africa from the Commonwealth in 1961 officially ended British influence over the Cape of Good Hope. The surrender of South Africa to the Communist-influenced African National Congress in 1994 dissolved what remained of British sway over the vital hub.
Without a struggle, the British gave Hong Kong over to Chinese rule in 1997. In receiving Hong Kong, nicknamed the “Pearl of the Orient,” China not only inherited one of the world’s wealthiest trade centers, but it also took over a $380 million naval base built there by the British. “Never before has so much, used by so many, gone for so little,” declared a member of Britain’s Ministry of Defense. “With the end of British rule in Hong Kong,” the Trumpet wrote, “we see the final act performed in the closure of an empire—a God-given empire—and the hastening of the fulfillment of the prophesied curses upon a spoiled and ungrateful nation, the British people” (June 1997).
The island of Malta is another strategic outpost once in British control. During World War ii, Britain’s possession of the island was vital to its success in the Mediterranean. In 1964, however, Britain granted the Maltese political independence. In 1979, the last remaining British troops withdrew from the island, prompting Malta’s prime minister to declare it their “Day of Freedom.” Commenting on the loss of Malta and its Mediterranean island neighbor, Cyprus, the Plain Truth said, “British sea power … has now virtually disappeared from the Mediterranean, once called a ‘British lake’” (September 1979).
Even the lone sea gate victory over the past 50 years did not come without embarrassment. In April 1982, Argentina temporarily seized control of the Falkland Islands from Britain. Located about 250 miles off Argentina’s southern coast, this sea gate gives Britain control of the Straits of Magellan. While the British response to the insurrection defeated the Argentines, it was by no means easy. Argentina downed 34 British aircraft and sank seven ships, killing 255 British servicemen and three Falkland Islanders. Argentina’s decision to challenge Britain was a sobering indicator of just how much damage had been done to Britain’s image in previous sea gate handovers.
More recently, Argentina has renewed its efforts to force Britain to yield control of the Falklands. In 2006, Argentine President Nestor Kirchner warned Britain of a “drastic change” in Argentina’s efforts to gain sovereignty over the islands, launching a parliamentary commission to press the country’s claims. In 2008, in a speech marking the 26th anniversary of Argentina’s failed attempt to conquer the Falklands, Argentine President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner stated that her nation’s claim to the islands was “inalienable.” Vice President Julio Cobos spelled out what Buenos Aires had in mind: “We must recover this territory that is ours, that belongs to us.” The following year, Argentina implemented measures against the Falklands’ fishing and other industries. Argentina said the economic warfare measures would remain in place until Britain agreed to enter into talks on Argentina’s claim of sovereignty. Like Gibraltar, the Falklands’ days under British rule are numbered.
We could go on with details about Sri Lanka, Bab el-Mandeb, the Gulf of Guinea and more, but the point is this: During the last half of the 20th century, Britain and the United States surrendered almost every critical sea gate in the world. Herbert Armstrong prophesied of these strategic losses because he used the Bible as his guide to understand world events.
For that reason, we turn to him to see where this is all leading. The sun has already set on the British Empire, he wrote in the Plain Truth nearly half a century ago. And because the U.S. came to power a little later than Britain, its setting sun is just behind Britain’s. Both nations have long since lost the pride they once had in their power. God said this would happen because of their rampant sin and rebellion against His law. For these reasons, as Mr. Armstrong concluded in the September 1966 Plain Truth, “[M]idnight is fast approaching.”
The Communist Infiltration of America Was Prophesied
Another remarkable forecast taking on new relevance in our day
As Hitler’s forces rampaged across Europe during World War ii, the world’s greatest capitalist nation, America, entered into a “strange alliance” with Britain, the greatest colonial power, and the Soviet Union, the greatest communist state. When this happened, a peculiar phenomenon occurred across America. A popular wave of emotional fervor for the Soviet Union surged.
Many influential men, magazines and newspapers began fawning over Joseph Stalin. President Franklin Roosevelt went so far as to release Communist Party-U.S.A. leader Earl Browder from prison as a means to promote “national unity” between American Communists and the general public.
During this time of trial and confusion, however, the strong voice of Herbert W. Armstrong warned the nation that both fascism and communism presented a threat to the American way of life.
Just as he warned that a fascist revival of the Holy Roman Empire would invade America, he also warned that America’s rejection of God would allow communism to weaken the country to a degree that would make it susceptible to invasion!
“Communism is a worldwide political movement, organized inside many countries,” Mr. Armstrong wrote in the April-May 1944 Plain Truth. “From official Communist literature anyone can learn, if he wishes to know the truth, that communism is a plan, in action, for the violent overthrow of capitalism and the capitalistic governments. And capitalism means democracy, since it is the democracies who control more than two thirds of the world’s capital.”
During and after the Second World War, Mr. Armstrong dogmatically proclaimed the biblical truth that Russia would not attack America militarily before the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. Instead, he revealed that Russia would wage a psychological warfare of propaganda, infiltration, subversion and demoralization. The Communist Russians would attack “our minds, our moral and spiritual values, rather than our bodies and our earthly possessions.”
“What we fail to grasp, in the struggle with Russia, is this: We are not fighting a single nation in a military war, but a gigantic worldwide, plain-clothes army, masquerading as a political party, seeking to conquer the world with an entirely new kind of warfare,” Mr. Armstrong wrote in 1956. “It’s a kind of warfare we don’t understand, or know how to cope with. It uses every diabolical means to weaken us from within, sapping our strength, perverting our morals, sabotaging our educational system, wrecking our social structure, destroying our spiritual and religious life, weakening our industrial and economic power, demoralizing our armed forces, and finally, after such infiltration, overthrowing our government by force and violence! All this, cleverly disguised as a harmless political party! Communism is worldwide psychological warfare!”
Pointing to the Scriptures, Mr. Armstrong warned of a time when end-time Israel (particularly Britain and America) would become “mixed up” ideologically “with foreigners” (Hosea 7:8; Moffatt). In particular, he pointed to Hosea 7:8-13, a passage warning that Britain and America would “seek alliances with foreign nations, forsaking God” (ibid). He further highlighted how this passage shows these foreign alliances would “eat away” America’s strength “unknown to him” (verse 9).
History and current events have since shown that America’s dalliance with Russian-style communism has perverted its morals, weakened its economic power and eaten away its strength. This is a tragic story, but America was warned!
The First Stage of Subversion
Thirty-six years after Mr. Armstrong first started warning American radio audiences about communism in 1934, kgb Agent Yuri Bezmenov defected from the Soviet Union and escaped to Canada. After his defection, Bezmenov went to great lengths to warn the people of America that they were at war with communism. Like Mr. Armstrong said, this was not a war of guns and tanks, but of ideological subversion.
According to Bezmenov, the subversion for foreign nations was so important to the Soviet kgb that most of their resources were allocated to it. “Only about 15 percent of time, money and manpower is spent on espionage as such,” he explained in an interview with G. Edward Griffin. “The other 85 percent is a slow process which we call either ideological subversion or ‘active measures.’”
Ideological subversion, Bezmenov said, is a long-term process involving four stages: 1) demoralization, 2) destabilization, 3) crisis and 4) normalization.
The first of these states, demoralization, is a reeducation program designed to “change the perception of reality of every American to such an extent that despite the abundance of information, no one is able to come to sensible conclusions in the interest of defending themselves, their families, their community and their country.”
“It takes about 15 to 20 years to demoralize a nation,” Bezmenov wrote in his book Love Letter to America. “Why that many (or few)? Simple: this is the minimum number of years needed to ‘educate’ one generation of students in a target country (America, for example) and expose them to the ideology of the subverter.”
Such Soviet reeducation methods took deep root in America during the 1960s and ’70s. Bezmenov warned that kgb agents and their socialistic “fellow travelers” would use abstract art, perverted music, pornographic images, homosexual rights, racist politics, pacifist foreign policy and socialist economics to demoralize America.
Mr. Armstrong also warned of this infiltration of America. “I was saying over the air, and writing, back in 1934, that the Communist unwavering strategy was, as a first offensive toward world domination, propaganda,” he wrote in a 1980 issue of the Worldwide News. “They began sowing the seeds of their Communist atheistic education all over the United States—especially among college professors and students.”
“They invaded American university campuses, full force,” he continued, “and the U.S. universities trustingly let them in.”
Seeing the bigger picture, Mr. Armstrong warned that demoralization tactics originated from a higher source than Karl Marx or the kgb. “[C]ommunism is the devil’s effort, through his demon-inspired human tools, to take from us this greatest national and economic blessing God ever conferred on any people!” he wrote in the January 1949 Plain Truth. Even though the Soviet Union fell before its subversion efforts could progress to the stage of “destabilization” and “crisis,” the effects of Satan-inspired psychological demoralization tactics are still very much alive in America today.
Corruption of Modern Education
After the collapse of the Soviet Union, documents from the Soviet archives revealed the Communist Party-u.s.a. received $2 million to $3 million a year from the Kremlin to further its subversion activities.
Most of the efforts put forth by the Kremlin, the U.S. Communist Party and their “fellow travelers” went not toward traditional espionage, but toward the infiltration of American education. According to Yuri Bezmenov, the main methods of Soviet demoralization were: student exchanges with Moscow; the flooding of college campuses with Marxist literature; international seminars with Soviet participation; the infiltration of universities with radical leftists (often unknowingly under the guidance of kgb subverters); and the establishment of Communist-staffed newspapers and the organization of “study groups” to disseminate Soviet propaganda.
“Before World War ii the Communist Party in the United States was making great headway,” Mr. Armstrong wrote in the April 1980 Plain Truth. “They began infiltrating the colleges and universities. If they could not ‘convert’ professors, they worked on students who would become teachers later. Thus they were recruiting teachers to teach their doctrine all over the United States.”
According to a former staff director of a Senate investigations subcommittee, in the years between 1935 and 1953, the Communist Party “enlisted the support of at least 3,500 professors—many of them as dues-paying members, many others as fellow travelers, some as out-and-out espionage agents, some as adherents of the party line in varying degrees, and some as the unwitting dupes of subversion” (J. B. Matthews, “Communism and the Colleges,” American Mercury, May 1953).
The ultimate goal of communism is a “utopian” society where every individual is completely reliant on society (as the Communist Party). This is why the Marxist-Leninist concept of education emphasizes “mass character” and “collectivism” over “individual abilities.” For a collectivist society to truly succeed, it needs more than just a generation of people who don’t want to support themselves: It needs a generation of people who cannot support themselves!
This is the direction America is going. In the words of Bezmenov, “The American romance with state-run education as encouraged by kgb subverters has already produced generations of graduates who cannot spell, cannot find Nicaragua on a world map, cannot think creatively and independently. I wonder if Albert Einstein would have arrived at his Theory of Relativity if he had been educated in one of today’s American public schools. Most likely he would have ‘discovered’ marijuana and variant methods of sexual intercourse instead.”
Wrecking the Economy
“Communism, of course, is many things,” Mr. Armstrong wrote in the February 1962 Plain Truth. “It is a doctrine …. It is a revolutionary program. It is relentless class war. It is a radical philosophy of history. It is a radical philosophy of society. It is a social system. It is an economic system. It is a political strategy. It is a world conspiracy.”
As “an economic system,” communism pits the poorer classes against those who have been economically more successful by calling for the redistribution of wealth from the property-owning class to the wage-labor class. To accomplish this redistribution of wealth, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels wrote in The Communist Manifesto that private land ownership must be abolished, a heavily progressive income tax must be instituted, and all factories and financial institutions must be nationalized.
The mantra of Marxist economics is: “From each according to his ability, to each according to his need.” In other words, the wealth of those with more “ability” is redistributed to those with more “need.” This philosophy directly contradicts Jesus Christ’s teaching, represented in the parable of the pounds (Luke 19:12-27), in which each of Christ’s servants is rewarded differently based how much he actually produced with what he was given.
The main reason Marxism doesn’t work is that human beings lack incentive to work when they don’t receive the full benefits for their labor. The Soviet Union fell because of Russia’s enthusiastic embrace of Marxist-Leninist economics. As Russian economist Grigory Yavlinsky, an adviser to Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev, once said: “The Soviet system is not working because the workers are not working.”
Despite the economic disaster that befell the Soviet Union, and Herbert Armstrong’s numerous warnings, a shocking number of American economists cling to this socialist movement with Marxist traditions. The current political environment of the United States exalts many Communist ideals. There is even compelling evidence connecting the current president to some of the biggest names in America’s Communist history.
Herbert Armstrong warned that Communist economics would sap America’s strength and weaken its economic power. “Satan is not a visible red devil with tail, horns and a pitchfork,” he wrote in the October 1951 Plain Truth. “The real Satan is invisible. The world doesn’t see him or recognize his works. … It doesn’t grasp the diabolical deception of communism—Satan’s economic delusion, employing propaganda based on false economies as its first arm of attack ….”
The Marxist Plot to Abolish the Family
Herbert Armstrong warned that Communist subversion would use “every diabolical means” to pervert “our morals,” wreck “our social structure,” and destroy “our spiritual and religious life.”
Perhaps the most “diabolical” of these means is the Marxist plot to destroy the family. The Communist Manifesto calls the family a capitalist institution based “on private gain.” Marriage, it says, is but the “hypocritical” concealment of private prostitution. The authors hoped and predicted that both “bourgeois family” and “bourgeois marriage” would disappear with the vanishing of private capital.
Throughout the 1960s and into the ’70s, Soviet front groups were working throughout America to boost the destruction of traditional marriage. Federal Bureau of Investigation informant Larry Grathwohl penetrated the revolutionary Communist group Weather Underground. After palling around with Bill Ayers, Bernardine Dohrn and their crew for months, Grathwohl wrote his report, “Bringing Down America: An fbi Informer With the Weathermen.” The report reveals that the Weather Underground network was determined to abolish monogamous marriage, which they viewed as a repressive remnant of male and white supremacy.
In his book The Naked Communist, author Willard Cleon Skousen identified 45 Communist goals for the ideological subversion of America. These goals were read on the floor of Congress on January 10, 1963. Among them are: discrediting the family as an institution; encouraging promiscuity and easy divorce; emphasizing the need to raise children away from the negative influence of parents; promoting pornography; and presenting homosexuality as “normal, natural, healthy.” These are all designed to advance the destruction of marriage and family.
Under the influence of Marxist philosophy and Soviet subversion tactics, American educators have spent decades trumpeting sexual liberation, militant feminism and homosexual rights. All this has been done under the banner of freedom, but the truth is that these movements have served as Trojan horses in a far more sinister plot to abolish marriage and destroy the nuclear family!
In Karl Marx’s words: “Communism abolishes eternal truths, it abolishes all religion, and all morality, instead of constituting them on a new basis; it therefore acts in contradiction to all past historical experience.”
Or, in Mr. Armstrong’s words, “Communism is the vulture of decadent, dying politics, religion, and society” (Plain Truth subscriber letter, Nov. 24, 1967).
Herbert Armstrong elaborated in a 1979 World Tomorrow television broadcast. “Now, Satan has a kingdom; he’s the god of the world and he’s the invisible ruler of the world and the whole world is under his sway, by God’s permission,” he said. “Satan can’t do anything God does not permit because high above all rule is that of God, and God is permitting certain things for a reason that we learn by experience.
“Jesus said, ‘If a kingdom be divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand’—and that’s a good thing to remember. If the United States gets divided too much between the idea of freedom and the idea of communism, this country could not stand.” Now, over three decades later, it is evident that the United States is very much divided between “the idea of freedom and the idea of communism.”
Because the American people rejected God and allowed Satan-inspired Communist philosophy to creep into the nation, God will allow this experience to teach America the natural consequences of broken law!
Talk of equality sounds noble, but Herbert Armstrong warned that Communist “equality” was only a means to an end. “As fostered by the Soviet Union,” he wrote in 1949, “communism is launched as a worldwide class struggle, pitting the poorer class against those who have been economically more successful, arousing class prejudice, stirring up race hatreds. While they pretend to stand for peace, they engender only strife, and they feed like a vulture on poverty, discontent, discouragement, confusion and chaos.”
He warned, “Communism is the devil’s effort, through his demon-inspired human tools, to take from us this greatest national and economic blessing God ever conferred on any people!” (Plain Truth, January 1949).
Looking at America today, you have to admit once again that he was right!
The UN’s failures at building peace were prophesied since its earliest hours. Here’s advance news of the ‘peacekeeping’ power that will fill its shoes.
Herbert Armstrong, termed by many as an “unofficial ambassador for world peace,” attended the inaugural session for the United Nations in San Francisco in late April 1945. “Already I see the clouds of World War iii gathering at this conference,” he wrote the evening after the first session. “I do not see peace being germinated here, but the seeds of the next war! … [T]he United Nations conference was producing nothing but strife and bickering, and was destined from its inception to end in total failure. Yet world leaders were pronouncing it the world’s last hope—with the only alternative annihilation of humanity!”
Some 25 years later, he followed up: “World War ii was the ‘war to end all wars.’ The United Nations was the world ‘peace effort’ to prevent further wars. What are the results after a quarter century? There have been more than 50 wars. The UN has contributed to the shortening of four wars—BUT—there is no evidence to show that the United Nations has prevented any war!” (Plain Truth, August-September 1970).
In the January 1977 Plain Truth, Mr. Armstrong affirmed his original prediction: “The United Nations won’t be able to bring peace. The aggressor nations—and we are so gullible we never recognize them until after they plunge the world into another war—will go right on with their scheming and diabolical planning for world rule.”
Mr. Armstrong knew that the United Nations would not—could not—bring peace to this world. How did he know? By deeply studying God’s Holy Bible, which reveals the nature of man. “And the way of peace have they not known” (Romans 3:17). He saw, by prayerfully studying the Bible, that peace would never come on Earth by mankind; it could only be possible by Jesus Christ, upon His return with His world-ruling government to usher in utopian peace and harmony (Revelation 20:4-6; Isaiah 2:2-4; 9:6-7; 11:1-9).
So was Mr. Armstrong correct? Was he—as God’s messenger of specific prophecies concerning our time today—accurate in these predictions?
A Pyromaniac in the Fire Department
As time has gone by, the UN has descended from a failure to a farce. Sir Anthony Parsons, British ambassador to the UN from 1979 to 1982, declared it “a disastrous failure.” Jeane Kirkpatrick, American ambassador to the UN in the early 1980s, said it was “nothing more than a place for the nations to let off rhetorical steam.”
From its inception in 1945 until 2016 there have been no less than 300 wars and well over 3,000 other military conflicts—with just about as many people killed as died in World War ii itself! The UN has been involved in 71 peacekeeping missions during that time. In 2015 alone, it maintained 16 missions, and the number of conflicts worldwide was 54—resulting in over 12.4 million refugees! Is the UN succeeding in “keeping peace”? Or have God’s prophecies, as proclaimed by Mr. Armstrong, come to pass?
The 193-nation organization has been the center of growing cynicism, largely because of its corruption—but also because in most cases there are no real repercussions for a nation that violates its resolutions.
The UN appears to routinely give key positions to the most ludicrous candidates available. Back in April 2007, Iran was appointed vice chairman of the UN Disarmament Commission. This is the same defiant nation that repeatedly brags about its success in deceiving Western powers regarding disarmament of its nuclear weapons program. It is also the world’s number one state sponsor of terrorism.
Also in 2007, Syria was appointed vice president of the Atomic Energy Agency, and Zimbabwe was elected chair of the Commission on Sustainable Development. That was just a few months before the zenith of Zimbabwe’s astonishing hyperinflation crisis. That crisis culminated in Zimbabwe printing a $100 trillion bank note. The bill said $100 trillion on it—that’s a one with 14 zeros—but within a few months of being printed, it was worth virtually nothing. Does that sound like the kind of country that should head up an international commission focused on making nations economically strong?
In 2013, Libya was made chair of Disarmament International Security, with Iran as its rapporteur. “Allowing Iran to be on the UN committee dealing with nuclear disarmament and weapons proliferation is like inviting Assad, the Syrian dictator responsible for the death of 100,000 of his own people, to be the head of the population census bureau,” Israel’s UN ambassador, Ron Prosor, said of the shameful move.
2013 also saw China, Russia and Saudi Arabia appointed to the UN’s Human Rights Council. These selections unleashed a firestorm of criticism by analysts who decry these nations’ atrocious human rights records at home. “It was like electing a pyromaniac as chief of the fire department,” one critic of Russia’s appointment said.
In April 2014, in a particularly laughable selection, Iran was given a seat on the women’s rights commission. This means the nation that routinely lashes women for revealing an ankle and stones them for being raped now has influence over global women’s rights.
The list of ridiculous UN appoint-ments and elections could go on.
Failures, Prejudice and Scandals
The UN’s impotence was further evidenced by the Geneva deal it brokered with Iran in November 2013. In this deal, UN powers agreed to lift sanctions on Iran in exchange for promises from the Iranians to roll back key parts of their nuclear program. A few weeks later, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani boasted on Twitter: “In Geneva agreement world powers surrendered to Iranian nation’s will.” The brash statement was factually correct. Alongside other brazen statements from Tehran, it showed that Iran never had the slightest intent to uphold its end of the UN-brokered Geneva deal.
The UN has become a platform for spewing anti-Israel and anti-American rhetoric. Human rights activists such as Elie Wiesel, Bayard Rustin and Anne Bayefsky have pointed out that the organization has long been a bastion of rank anti-Semitism. One example was the 1975 passage of UN General Assembly Resolution 3379, which equated Zionism with racism. Another came in 2009 when then-Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad used his speech to the General Assembly to longwindedly rail against Israel and the U.S. The UN simply is being used to marginalize the influence of Israel and the U.S. on the global stage.
Then there are the scandals. The UN’s corruption was most evident in a con job involving the oil-for-food program that saw billions of dollars siphoned off by the highest levels of the organization. Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein pocketed between $10 billion and $40 billion under the cover of the program. Some have called it the biggest scam job in human history.
Then there was the Congo sex scandal, first uncovered in early 2004, which continued for over a year even after UN officials knew of allegations that their peacekeepers had raped children as young as 12 and committed numerous other sex crimes. There were over 150 accusations of rape, child abuse, solicitation and other sexual crimes—70 in the town of Bunia alone.
In 2007, news emerged that millions of dollars earmarked for UN development projects in North Korea had instead been pilfered by Supreme Leader Kim Jong-Il.
Many UN peacekeeping missions have been worse than useless. Not only have they utterly failed to prevent several instances of genocide and oppression, but at times have made matters worse. In 2000, for example, UN forces actually cooperated with Hezbollah on the Lebanon-Israel border in the kidnapping of three Israeli soldiers.
A Cloak of Peace for Aggressors
For decades after World War ii, a rigid taboo prevented Germany and Japan from deploying troops overseas. Those two powers were the primary aggressors of that devastating war, and the nations of the world didn’t want to see soldiers dispatched from Berlin and Tokyo gallivanting around on their turf. But UN peacekeeping missions gave both countries a path around that rigid taboo.
Germany’s first deployment since World War ii was part of a UN-mandated mission to Somalia in 1993. Japan’s first postwar military deployment was to Cambodia in 1992—under the banner of the United Nations. Once the UN helped Berlin and Tokyo smash these taboos, it became significantly easier for both to dispatch soldiers around the globe. Since then, both nations have turned their militaries loose outside of UN missions.
The German Army, in particular, has benefited from wearing this precious UN cloak. Thanks largely to its participation in peacekeeping missions, the Bundeswehr today is among the most technologically advanced, best-equipped militaries on the planet. Its troops are now dotted throughout Africa, the Middle East and Central Asia on UN and nato missions. In 2006, the German Navy made its first official foray into Middle Eastern waters since World War ii as Germany took command of the maritime component of the UN Interim Force in Lebanon, allowing it to park its ships right off Israel’s coast.
Since that first mission back in 1992, the Japan Self-Defense Force has sent its troops to Mozambique, Iraq, Indonesia, Nepal, Israel, Somalia, Haiti and Djibouti. Then in May 2013—in part because of Tokyo’s success in these missions—Japan’s ruling party approved the draft of the full-scale rearmament of the country.
Under the banner of promoting peace, the UN is allowing nations with histories of unbridled brutality to deploy their militaries around the world. Time will prove this to be a tragic mistake.
The UN was billed as man’s last hope for peace. But now it is clear that, just as Mr. Armstrong wrote in his 1966 booklet The Wonderful World Tomorrow—What It Will Be Like, “Man has failed his last chance!” Rather than preventing World War iii, the UN has posted German troops right on the doorstep of Israel. As noted elsewhere in this booklet, it is the German invasion of the Middle East that will mark the beginning of World War iii. Instead of preventing catastrophe, the UN is helping bring it about.
As Romans 3:17 says, mankind really does not know the way to peace. Does that mean all hope is lost? No! “Now God must step in—or we perish!” Mr. Armstrong wrote. That is mankind’s real hope for peace.
The UN’s failed efforts to bring peace to the world will soon be replaced by wonderfully successful efforts spearheaded by Jesus Christ—the Prince of peace (Isaiah 9:6). He will rule the entire Earth, uniting all nations in His way of prosperity!
That is man’s only hope for peace. That is prophesied clearly in the Bible. Mr. Armstrong restated it for many to hear. The Trumpet prophesies the same message today so that even more can hear it. And in a very short time, that prophecy will mercifully come to pass!
Once and Future Battlefield
Remember these bold predictions about the world’s most unpredictable hotspot.
How could anyone predict what will happen in an area as unpredictable as the Middle East? For decades—even millennia—this region has been chaotic with change. Empires have crumbled, boundaries drawn and redrawn, governments toppled, and whole populations dispossessed. Isn’t it crazy to presume to foresee what lies down the road for this region?
Yet, for over 70 years, first the Plain Truth and then the Trumpet have done just that—with astonishing accuracy. For decades, writers of these publications reported on, analyzed and warned about what would—and will—happen in the volatile Middle East.
How? By using the Bible as their guide.
Regarding the Middle East, the Bible is absolutely clear on certain facts of prophecy. Herbert W. Armstrong was emphatic in pointing these out—some of which have already occurred. On other points, he and the other writers based their assessments and projections on the principles laid out in prophecy. Many of these were also quite accurate. Time is bringing such specifics into clearer focus; events that the Trumpet has reported on in the last two decades have brought even more detail to our understanding of how prophecy will play out in the Middle East. (To learn about the Trumpet’s legacy of prophecy in the Middle East, read our February 2010 issue.)
Let’s give you some of these remarkable statements, and couple them with their subsequent fulfillment in current events.
Jews Take Jerusalem
A prophecy in Zechariah 12:2 reads, “Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of trembling unto all the people round about, when they shall be in the siege both against Judah and against Jerusalem.” The JPS Tanakh Bible renders the latter part of that verse, “And upon Judah also shall it fall to be in the siege against Jerusalem.”
In May 1963, the Plain Truth made this interesting statement: “Old Jerusalem is today almost entirely in the hands of the kingdom of Jordan. But this prophecy unveils a struggle for the possession of Jerusalem by Judah—the Jews.” Also, Zechariah 14:2 indicates that half of Jerusalem will be conquered by non-Jewish forces just before Christ returns; that means the Jews will have to control the whole city prior to that time. Based on these and other scriptures, Mr. Armstrong and the Plain Truth staff taught in the early 1960s that the Jews were prophesied to take over the entire Old City of Jerusalem.
On May 1, 1967, Mr. Armstrong, returning from a trip to Amman and Jerusalem, spoke to an assembly at the Ambassador College campus in England. In that recorded address, he said: “Any day, now, you may expect the Israelis of the country that calls itself ‘Israel’ to flood over with a military invasion into the Jordanian half of the divided city of Jerusalem. …
“Once the Israelis do take over the Jordan sector of Jerusalem, instantly the United Nations and the major individual powers, the United States, ussr, Britain, France, probably will stop further occupation of Arab countries by the Jews. … But the Jews will undoubtedly be allowed to hold the Old City of Jerusalem” (emphasis added throughout).
Just five weeks later, the Middle East erupted into war, just as Mr. Armstrong prophesied. Israel went on the attack and for six days pushed back its frontiers in virtually every direction—also taking over Jerusalem. It was a stunning defeat for the neighboring Arab countries, ending in a ceasefire.
However, it was not to be a permanent peace.
The July 1967 Plain Truth reported, “Here on the spot in Jerusalem, a few days after the ceasefire, no one worries about another war. Israelis are exuberant, confident, proud.” Notice the statement that followed: “The air is filled with tense excitement—the Jews expect great events to occur soon. And indeed they will … but not the way the world expects!”
While the Jews anticipated a more stable future on the heels of their victory, Mr. Armstrong and the Plain Truth foretold the opposite.
The Peace Process
Even in the immediate aftermath of the 1967 war, the Plain Truth made some bold and specific predictions: “First, Israel will very likely give back some territory. That is, Israel will use conquered land she does not really desire in order to bargain for benefits she dearly wants” (ibid). There followed postulations about specific parcels Israel would return: the Sinai Peninsula, the Gaza Strip, captured Syrian territory except for the Golan Heights. However, the Heights itself and the West Bank area, Plain Truth writers felt, would likely remain in Israel’s official control.
The “bargaining” for peace that was specifically predicted by this article began 11 years later, with the 1978 Camp David Accords. Just as Mr. Armstrong predicted, Israel gave the Sinai back to Egypt in exchange for promises of peace. Much later, in 2005, as part of the “Roadmap to Peace” initiative, the Israeli Army withdrew from Gaza, and all Jewish Israelis living in the Gaza Strip were evacuated. These events prove Mr. Armstrong’s bold forecasts startlingly accurate!
The wars that flared up several times after Israel declared statehood—the wars in which Israel defended itself to win land parcels critical to its security—have given way to this painful, protracted “peace” process, punctuated by terrorist violence, in which Israel is making territorial concessions bit by bit. It is very possible that this “bargaining” is not yet over.
This process is actually paving the way for the “great events” predicted by the Plain Truth in 1967!
Gerald Flurry wrote in the April 1996 Trumpet about the terrifying dangers for Israel in following this land-for-peace formula. “Judah is afraid to get tough even in the Arab area which they control. They are fearful that the ‘peace’ process will break down. What most of them don’t know is that the peace process is a deadly delusion! It is a wound that is going to cause death …. It is like terminal cancer!”
Mr. Flurry stated in the same article: “Through the peace process Judah has become vulnerable to the enemy, with very little freedom to strike back. … Soon the whole world will see what the Arabs saw all along—that the peace process was a wound from which Judah would never recover!” (That is a reference to the “wound” spoken of in Hosea 5:13.)
Mr. Flurry has prophesied that the peace process will break down and then half of Jerusalem will be taken by violence in fulfillment of Zechariah 14:2. In the November 1996 Trumpet he wrote, “[W]hen one half of Jerusalem is taken captive, [Israel] will see that it all happened as a part of the Middle East peace process. Their wound, or the peace process, primarily causes them to lose one half of Jerusalem.
“God tells Judah that Germany cannot ‘heal you or cure you of your wound.’ Why does God say that? Because Judah got into this mess by looking to men. Now they are trying to get out of the quagmire by looking to men. [The Jews] will never find a cure or healing until they look to God!” Our readers will do well to remember these statements. Keep your eyes on that peace process as a prelude to further troubles for Israel!
Scripture also tells us that when these treaties break down, the “men” that Israel will ultimately look to for help will be from German-led Europe.
The Rise of Islam
The April 1958 Plain Truth warned about the unification of Arab countries as an important factor to watch in the Middle East. While the Arabs are not generally known for their unity, this article pointed to the fact that their surging pan-Arab nationalism, driven by the Islamic religion, was strong enough to draw them together. However, it predicted that their unity would never be strong. “Throughout North Africa we found that the Muslim religion is making rapid progress …. A divided Christianity is rapidly losing ground there. …
“[Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser] calls on all Arabs to join with him in ‘a common struggle’ against Western ‘imperialism’! … Nasser is working for Muslim unity because he knows it gives him absolute power over the economic destiny of Western Europe. But Nasser will never be able to unify the Arab world. … Egypt will make alliances with certain nations, but … will not unite all the Arab world.”
The October 1963 Plain Truth also reported on Nasser’s efforts at Arab unity: “The effect of these events on the British and American peoples is destined to be tremendous. For we are being kicked out of the Middle East. … A rising tide of hate against America and Britain is being fomented by Nasser. … These events are causing the great gulf of misunderstanding between our peoples and the Arab nations to grow continually larger.
“This misunderstanding—and the Arabs’ hatred of Israel—is a wedge being used to help create a powerful union of Arab nations which is destined to cooperate, not with either the U.S. or Russia, but with the powerful new Germany in particular and the soon-coming United Europe. This definitely spells trouble ahead for the U.S. and Britain!”
Arab hatred for Israel, Britain and America hasn’t dissipated one iota since those words were written. And despite strong U.S. efforts to befriend Arab countries—including overtures on the recognition of an independent Palestinian state—U.S. influence in the region is declining in every way. Increasingly, it is Europe, and the head of the “European religion,” that are being sought as the major outside arbiter of Mideast troubles, just as the Plain Truth said it would be.
Both Israel and Arab states are calling for more European involvement. Not since German Gen. Erwin Rommel’s Middle Eastern desert campaign during World War ii has Europe, particularly Germany, had the potential to be such a powerful player in the region.
Despite Europe’s gestures toward Israel, its true partners are the Arabs. Europe has reached out to Arab nations through the European Neighborhood Policy and the Union for the Mediterranean. For well over two decades, Europe has been negotiating a free-trade agreement between Gulf states and the EU. The EU is already the number one trading partner of the Gulf Cooperation Council, a union of six Gulf countries. Germany, in particular, has focused on procuring military contracts in the Middle East. In 2011, for example, it agreed to sell 200 Leopard tanks to Saudi Arabia. In 2012, its arms exports to countries in the Gulf region rose by almost 60 percent to $1.88 billion from the previous year. In international affairs, European states and their peoples regularly take the Arabs’ side against Israel.
But Europe’s relations with the Middle East will go far deeper than trade. As a 1963 Plain Truth article reported, the ultimate goal of both the Arab nations and the Catholic-influenced European power is the destruction of Israel. This common interest will cause some Arab nations to ally with the EU.
The February 1966 Plain Truth discussed this: “Even though deep-seated rivalries among themselves still exist, the Arabs are finally attempting to coordinate their military potential. … The Arabs have lacked unity and leadership in their previous fiascos with the fierce-fighting Jews. This they hope to achieve with their new command set-up. It was prophesied long ago in your Bible.”
Today, Mideast Arab countries continue their efforts to unify, though they often seem like siblings who always end up bickering over things no one else understands. Their rhetoric may be different at the bargaining tables of the various current “peace processes,” but the common denominator among most Arab nations remains largely their religious hatred for the Jewish presence in the region, and their continued, decades-old aim to “throw Israel into the sea.” Bible prophecy shows that they will eventually organize themselves into two main groups: one aligned with Iran, and one that quickly allies itself with Europe.
Already the rough outlines of the two groups are visible. Iraq is moving ever closer to its Persian neighbor. With the ousting of President Hosni Mubarak, Egypt is in a position to thaw its hostility toward Iran. At the same time, civil war-devastated Syria is poised to move out of Iran’s orbit and is calling for Europe to get more involved in the Middle East.
The Bible identifies an end-time Middle Eastern power as “the king of the south” (Daniel 11:40)—likely an international coalition of nations dominated by one in particular. Watch for Iran—which is not Arab but Persian, yet still fueled by the furnace of radical Islam—to grow in power. Based on current trends, the Trumpet strongly believes the king of the south will be radical Islam, drawing on the power of several countries and spearheaded by Iran.
Kingpin of the King of the South
Indications of Iran’s eventual supremacy among Arab nations appeared as early as 1972 in the Plain Truth’s January issue. An article titled “Iran Today: Nation With a Mission” stated, “There are definite indications that Iran is setting her sights on becoming the most important and influential country in the sweeping arc of nations extending through the Middle East to the western borders of India.”
At the time, that goal was supported by Britain, which pumped Iran with armaments and other resources to make it the stabilizing force in a region Britain wanted to extricate itself from. But Iran’s leadership changed, and now—as with post-World War ii Germany—the West is finding itself facing a monster of its own making.
Of Middle Eastern nations today, Iran is of most chilling concern for the West. Iran leads the region in sponsoring terrorist activities, in subverting efforts at peace, and in stockpiling and building new weapons. As Iran grows ever closer to building a nuclear bomb, the U.S. shoves its head even deeper into the sand. Routinely trying to deceive international observers and in defiance of international pressure, Iran has over a period of years steadily improved its capability to enrich uranium, all the while insisting that it would only serve peaceful civilian purposes. But in December 2009, secret Iranian documents revealed that, at least since early 2007, Tehran had been working on a “neutron initiator”—the trigger needed to detonate a nuclear bomb.
The King of the North
Will this Iranian-led coalition succeed? Did the Plain Truth make any predictions about that? Yes—sure predictions based on the prophecy of Daniel 11:40-41.
Those verses say this king of the south will push at another power called “the king of the north.” That will precipitate a crushing attack by that northern power, which will overthrow many Middle Eastern countries, including “the glorious land”—Israel, with Jerusalem. That prophecy shows the massive inferiority of the Islamic power compared to the king of the north.
So who is this king of the north?
As far back as 1955, when communism was spreading its tentacles into the Middle East, Mr. Armstrong wrote about it: “The 11th chapter of Daniel shows … the city of Jerusalem will finally be captured by a revival of the power of fascism in Europe—not by a communist invasion of Palestine!” (Plain Truth, November-December 1955). Thus, again, while the rest of the world was looking at the dangers of a spreading communism, Mr. Armstrong knew the real area to watch was elsewhere. He continued, “It will be a fascist revival of a church and state union—a United States of Europe—that will attempt to establish the palace and capital there ….”
It is Europe that the Plain Truth warned about, specifically saying Europe’s intervention in the Middle East would be the arena in which it first reveals itself as a brutal imperialist power! German-led Europe will be the king of the north.
As time marched on from 1955, one probable reason for this yet-future conflict began to come into view: oil. The Trumpet still stands behind this statement from the February 1966 Plain Truth: “Before the mounting crisis in the Middle East is over, all major nations of the Earth will be embroiled [speaking of the battle of Armageddon; Zechariah 14:1-2; Revelation 16:16]. Why will they be there? One major reason is oil. Western Europe’s economy is absolutely dependent upon these reserves. So is that of Japan. Any major disruption of this oil supply—such as an all-out Arab-Israel war—would bring intervention.”
As of late 2014, the EU imports around 40 percent of its oil from opec countries, which are mostly Middle Eastern nations. These countries could try to “push” Europe by choking off that vital oil supply. That would certainly prod Europe to retaliate swiftly. Even in July 1971, the Plain Truth put forth this possibility by reporting that instability in the oil-rich region had sparked “new calls for Europe to assume a greater role in the Middle East, including the peaceful settlement of the Arab-Israeli confrontation. … Europe, and particularly the Common Market, is certain to increase its involvement in the area.”
Today, Europe’s involvement in the region includes the peace process and even extends to troop deployments. In late 2006, the German Navy took command of the maritime component of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon, tasked by the Security Council to secure the Lebanese coastline. Other European states are part of a multinational task force acting as a buffer between Israel and southern Lebanon. Germany has soldiers deployed in nato’s operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. Germany has also played an important back-channel role, negotiating on Israel’s behalf for soldiers kidnapped by Hezbollah and Hamas. In January 2004, for example, it brokered the swap of more than 400 Arab prisoners for an Israeli businessman and the bodies of three soldiers. Germany also helped with the mediation that secured the release of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit in October 2011 in exchange for over 1,000 Palestinian terrorists. Germany and Israel have held joint cabinet meetings and have agreed to hold many more. Israel regards Germany as one of its closest and most important allies. Europe—especially Germany—is showing itself willing to be a Mideast “peacekeeper,” and is in many ways taking over from the U.S. as the Western mediator.
Regarding the ongoing Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Israeli Prof. Naomi Chazan stated, “The U.S. without a doubt has played in the past and continues to play a lead role in determining the terms and the pace of progress toward resolution of the conflict. It is not, however, the only player. Increasingly Europe, for many years content to take a back seat to Washington, is becoming a more vocal political (as well as economic and security) actor” (Jerusalem Post, Dec. 24, 2009).
This is exactly what Mr. Armstrong prophesied.
One of the EU’s first acts after it enacted the Lisbon Treaty on December 1, 2009, was to produce a statement calling for the division of Jerusalem. Europe’s leaders said Jerusalem should be split between Israel and a new Palestinian state that has East Jerusalem as its capital. The same month, the terrorist group Hamas claimed that it had been meeting secretly with high-ranking EU officials, breaking the EU’s promise in 2006 that it would not engage in talks with Hamas.
Despite all the signs indicating Europe’s pro-Arab bent, Israel seems quite willing to rely on Europe for support in constructing regional peace. Under President Barack Obama, the U.S. is ditching Israel, which pushes the Jews to rely more on Europe for help. The Bible prophesies that Israel will ultimately call on Europe to make peace in the Middle East when all other options fail. That will be the biggest mistake it will ever make. You can read more about this in our free booklet Jerusalem in Prophecy.
Jerusalem: Catholic Capital
There is an important reason, beyond oil, for Europe’s keen interest in Middle Eastern affairs, and especially the affairs of the Jewish state. As you might have come to expect, Herbert Armstrong and the Plain Truth discussed this reason too.
Using prophecies, particularly those involving “the abomination of desolation” (look at Matthew 24:15 in conjunction with Luke 21:20), Mr. Armstrong explained that there is another likely reason for the final clash between the kings of the south and north. The May 1963 Plain Truth reported, “Meanwhile, the Roman Catholic Church has entered the picture. During the first sessions of the Second Vatican Council the question of peace in the Middle East came under discussion. A tentative suggestion was the reestablishment, under papal jurisdiction, of the kingdom of Jerusalem.
“In the Middle Ages the Crusaders established in Palestine a Catholic kingdom of Jerusalem. Then it was to recover Palestine from the Mohammedan ‘infidel.’ Today it would be established—so goes the suggestion—to keep the peace in the Middle East.”
Mr. Armstrong believed that Europe, under the influence of the Catholic Church, would take a greater and greater interest in Jerusalem. Mr. Flurry has since built on this theme. In the November 1996 Trumpet, he wrote: “Even though Germany cannot help the Jews, the Germans do get involved in Jerusalem. The Catholic Church is going to unite and then guide the European Union, or the king of the north—with Germany as the real power behind it. The Catholic Church also has a great interest in Jerusalem.
“Christianity, Judaism and the Muslim religion all have an intense interest in Jerusalem. The city is the second-most holy site to the Arabs. … It is the most holy city for the Jews. Christians consider it their first or second holiest city. In the end, it is going to bring disaster to all three religions. …
“Many leaders today are asking for Jerusalem to be made into an international city. … Are the Jews about to invite a peacekeeping force in? … Is [the ‘push’ of Daniel 11:40] going to be over Jerusalem? It is probably going to involve oil. But the clash appears to be over Jerusalem.”
Jerusalem is constantly making the headlines in the festering Israeli-Palestinian conflict. In June 2014, just after Pope Francis visited the Holy Land, he hosted Israeli President Shimon Peres and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas for a meeting in his home at the Vatican. The topic of discussion? How to bring about “peace in Jerusalem”! This was the first time the Vatican has ever hosted a prayer gathering of two leaders engaged in conflict. Inserting himself into the Middle East peace process is a significant political move for the religious leader. As the Washington Post wrote, “The pontiff had said his visit [to Israel] would be ‘strictly religious,’ but it was not” (May 26).
In truth, the impartial-looking Vatican is no stranger to playing politics. Though many people view it as purely a religious entity, it is in fact a state, with independent sovereignty, diplomatic immunity, ambassadors, a central bank, a capital and a very centralized government. It also has strong political interests in Jerusalem.
We can expect the Roman Catholic Church to continue to press its way into Middle Eastern affairs. History shows, however, that in this case, the Jews have ample reason to view the pope’s overtures with suspicion. For one, by every measure the peace process that the pope is advocating has been a disaster for the Jewish state. Each time Israel has entered into negotiations and made agreements with the Palestinians, it has resulted in a loss of land and a subsequent increase in violence and terrorism.
As both Mr. Armstrong and Mr. Flurry have forecast, we should watch for Europe and the Catholic Church to take an ever more intense interest in the Jerusalem situation.
Future events in the Middle East can be foretold. In fact, all those who do not understand in advance what is to happen there will be dismayed as it explodes in a conflagration that will envelop the whole world! Not one person on Earth will be able to ignore the situation for much longer.
You are witnessing in embryonic stages the dramatic fulfillment of these events prophesied for thousands of years in your Bible! For seven decades the Plain Truth and Trumpet have showcased and broadcast the absolute currency of these prophecies. Are those prophecies the world has already seen fulfilled enough to convince you to take seriously those that are yet to occur? How much more do you need to see before you will believe—and act upon—God’s clear prophetic vision?
The Kings of the East
More Plain Truth predictions now marching toward fulfillment: Russia will join forces with East Asian nations, forming a superpower of a scope the Earth has never seen.
If we survey the landscape of the nations of Asia during the time when Herbert W. Armstrong was making geopolitical forecasts about them—from the 1930s to the 1980s—the remarkable nature of his predictions becomes undeniable.
First, consider Russia. The Moscow-led Soviet Union appeared to be the primary threat to the Western world. For decades, it was expanding its territory at the rate of roughly one Belgium per year! As people languished under Communist tyranny behind the Iron Curtain, the Soviets and the Americans built up elaborate missile and space programs that threatened human civilization with extinction. For more than four decades, the world remained transfixed by the Cold War standoff; the arms race spawned fears over the possibility of nuclear winter and “global overkill.”
Next, consider China. Under Chairman Mao, the Chinese were weak, backward and too mired in domestic turmoil to pose a formidable threat to world powers.
The bulk of interaction between Russia and China was bickering, wars and imperial conquests. There were periods of partial cooperation, but eventually the two became fixated on a rivalry to see which would triumph in achieving the “one true communism.” In 1964, tensions between Moscow and Beijing reached fever pitch, prompting them to completely sever relations. Chinese leaders called for an overthrow of “Soviet revisionism.”
That was the general scene in the Orient at the time. Most analysts of that era said the ussr was the primary power the Western world should fear, China was essentially a non-threat, and bitter enmity would remain between Moscow and Beijing for decades or even centuries.
But since Mr. Armstrong’s forecasts were based not on appearances, but instead on the sure word of Bible prophecy, they were precisely the opposite of prevailing analysts’ views!
‘Don’t Fear the USSR’
Amid the cacophony of news reports that emerged throughout that Cold War era, his lone voice cried out: “Russia will not attack America!”
He repeatedly declared—years ahead of the Soviet Union’s fall—that the ussr was not the power the U.S. should fear. The real power to watch, according to his forecast, would be a 10-nation “United States of Europe” that would rise up to play a lead role on the global stage. He said Russia would remain a threat to the world—but not in the way most Westerners thought.
Not many listened to Mr. Armstrong’s predictions. Many scoffed at statements such as this one, which appeared in the December 1956 Plain Truth: “We have been warning that it is not Russia which will conquer us—it is not Russia which will master Europe … it is a union of 10 fascist nations in Europe which will become a third power in the world and rise up to conquer the democracies of Northwest Europe and America!”
Remember: That statement was printed at the height of the Cold War!
Even around the time of the Berlin Crisis of 1961 and the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962—when many Americans were literally losing sleep over the Russian threat—the Plain Truth categorically declared that the U.S. need not fear the Soviet Union. “The Russians would back down, or give in on almost any point that has arisen, rather than go to war with America!” Mr. Armstrong stated in the October 1962 issue.
To say this was a minority perspective is like saying “a lot of people live in China”: It’s a gross understatement!
Mr. Armstrong continued to proclaim that the Soviet Union would not go to war with America right up until his death on January 16, 1986. Still, many didn’t believe him. But a few short years after he died, the ussr collapsed and the Iron Curtain rusted away. Suddenly, the “evil empire” lost its foothold in Eastern Europe and the Soviet threat to America indeed seemed to diminish. The Cold War was over, and a reunited Germany appeared—just as Mr. Armstrong had boldly declared!
Cooperation Between Moscow, Beijing and Beyond
Mr. Armstrong also boldly declared—despite China’s lack of development at the time, and despite the mutual hatred between Moscow and Beijing—that soon Beijing would be powerful, and would rally behind Russia. Other Asian states, possibly including Japan and India, would also lend their numbers and might to this confederacy, according to his prediction.
He forecast that after the ussr collapsed, a giant Asian superpower, with Russia and China at the helm, would rise up and dramatically affect the course of history. This power bloc—a conglomerate of peoples that comprise one third of the world’s population—would begin cooperating economically and militarily and eventually form a gargantuan Asian superpower of a size and scope the world has never seen. He went on to say that it would play a vital role in the torrent of events that will lead to the conclusion of mankind’s 6,000 years of self-rule!
Even before World War ii broke out, Mr. Armstrong could foresee the emergence of these two superpowers. In the June-July 1934 Plain Truth, he proclaimed, “Scripture prophesies two great military powers to arise in the last days—one the revival of the Roman Empire by a federation of 10 nations in the territory of the ancient Roman Empire; the other … Russia, with her allies.” He suggested those allies would be “possibly China or Japan.”
The Plain Truth of December 1959 predicted that Russia and China would lay aside their differences to form a coalition: “Russia’s program is not to take Europe and to attack the United States, first. The Communist program, which our leaders should know, calls first for the seizure of Asia. Lenin wrote that the way to Paris, London and New York is via [Beijing] and Delhi! … [P]art of the Communist plan [is] to place India and Pakistan in a giant vice between Russia and China. … Red China insists it has a legal right not only to Tibet but [also] to many parts of India and Southeast Asia. … Their constant dream for centuries has been ultimate world conquest! … China knows, however, that in this highly industrialized age she can accomplish this dream only as an ally of Russia. … China is now ready to begin devouring the rest of Asia with Russia’s secret military backing” (emphasis added throughout).
The December 1962 issue of the Plain Truth explained which Bible scriptures informed Mr. Armstrong’s prophecies about Asia: “From time to time, news commentators—in describing the coming catastrophic military struggle for world control—use the biblical expression Armageddon found in Revelation 16:16. But what they do not mention is a striking prophecy about ‘Armageddon’ found in Revelation 16:12. In this verse we read that ‘the way of the kings of the east’ is to be prepared!”
Who are these “kings of the east”? Their identities are critical for us to understand if we are to know where modern nations fit in biblical prophecy. Your Bible—mainly in the books of Genesis, Jeremiah, Ezekiel and Revelation—identifies these leaders or nations as Meshech, Tubal, Gog and Magog.
Mr. Armstrong pointed out, “There is general agreement among students of prophecy that ‘Gog’ in the land of ‘Magog’ is the vast regions of northern Eurasia extending from the Baltic to the Pacific. ‘Meshech’ is Moscow; ‘Tubal’ is Tobolsk. The Bible margin says ‘Prince of Rosh,’ which is Russia” (Plain Truth, April 1981).
In addition to pushing into Middle Asia, China would attempt to pull some of its island neighbors into its grasp. On this issue, it has been the practice of Western leaders to try to appease China through peace talks—often to no avail. The very non-politically correct Plain Truth of the 1960s didn’t mince words regarding this problem.
“The Asiatic mind is totally different from the Occidental [Western] mind. It doesn’t reason in the same manner. Try though we may to delude ourselves into believing our dollars, trade missions, military advisers and arms shipments, our hospital ships, our missions, our food supplies are helping stem the tide of the advancing threat of communism in these Eastern nations—we are failing! These simple peoples are impressed with strength, not talk. They feel a much closer kinship with other peoples of the Asian sphere than they do with the far-away ‘Yankees’ with customs, languages and religions so totally different from their own” (November 1961).
Eastern Europe’s Breakaway
One key event Mr. Armstrong said would enable the building of this Asian bloc was the slipping of Eastern Europe from the ussr’s grip—an event that has been happening since 1989.
As early as April 1952, even while West Germany was rebuilding after being bombed to ashes in World War ii, Mr. Armstrong’s Good News magazine wrote, “Russia may give East Germany back to the Germans and will be forced to relinquish her control over Hungary, Czechoslovakia and parts of Austria to complete the 10-nation union.”
Notice what Mr. Armstrong wrote in a booklet first published in 1955—over 45 years before Eastern Europe split from the ussr: “[S]ome of the Balkan nations are going to tear away from behind the Iron Curtain. Russia has lost already, to all appearances, Tito’s Yugoslavia. Russia probably will lose still more of her Eastern European satellites.”
Not many believed that statement then, or this Plain Truth report from the following year: “Communist oppression in Eastern Europe is being overthrown. … We have shown years in advance what would happen to Russia’s ill-fated empire in Eastern Europe. These prophecies have been in your Bible for the past 1,900 years. But the world, and the churches of this world, have refused to believe them” (December 1956).
In January 1957, Mr. Armstrong wrote, “When the right psychological moment arrives, a number of these [Eastern European] nations will break away from Moscow ….”
That “right psychological moment” didn’t arrive quite as early as Mr. Armstrong thought it might. But in 1989, after the fall of the Berlin Wall, the moment marched in with force!
Throughout the Cold War, the Russians believed the West—Germany in particular—would try every means within its power to pry the Soviet satellite nations of Eastern Europe out of Moscow’s grip. The passage of time has revealed that those fears were well founded. Many of the Eastern European nations—including the Czech Republic, the former East Germany, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Bulgaria and the states that once comprised Yugoslavia—did in fact escape the clutches of Soviet Russia! Each is now a part of the European Union or is subject to it.
Throughout the Cold War, Mr. Armstrong’s insights were correct!
Why is the loss of these Eastern European nations significant? Because it drastically weakens Russia’s western border defenses. Russia has learned, having suffered three European invasions in two centuries, that it needs a strong buffer against Germany on its western flank. With that buffer removed, Vladimir Putin’s Russia has been on a rampage to rebuild Russian strength. His February 2014 annexation of Crimea, Ukraine, was a part of this campaign. Putin seeks to create a buffer at the Ukraine plain and reassert its influence in the Caspian region. Russia has used European dependence on Russian oil as a powerful lever in this process, and would like nothing more than to bring the former-ussr Commonwealth of Independent States (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Belarus, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine and Uzbekistan) back in the Kremlin’s fold. In some of these nations, such as Georgia, Ukraine and Moldova, Putin has already regained de facto control of some key regions. In others, such as Belarus, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan, he is essentially king of the whole nation in all but name.
But this is not enough for the Russians to feel secure. To further counter EU and nato expansion, Russia is also drawing closer to India, Japan and, most of all, China.
Asian Powers Today
In 1989, some three years after Mr. Armstrong’s death, Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev made a landmark visit to China, which set in motion a sharp tightening of ties and injected new impetus into efforts to settle demarcation lines the two had disputed for centuries. Within two years, Moscow and Beijing had signed an official border agreement, and from 1991 to 1997, China spent $6 billion on Russian armaments.
In April 1997, China, Russia, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan and Kyrgystan met to sign a security deal regarding the 4,700-mile border between the former Soviet Union and China. That November, the presidents of Russia and China formally ended variances over the 1991 border agreement. This act seemed to confirm that the two nations that had for so long competed with each other, were entering a new era of cooperation.
August 2003 saw Russo-Chinese military cooperation leap to the next level when armed forces from both nations participated in joint anti-terror exercises under the framework of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (sco). Since then, they have held half a dozen joint military, naval and anti-terror drills, often including troops from other sco members such as Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. Many view these exercises as evidence of an emerging military bloc that could eventually rival nato.
The first military strike of this rising Asian superpower came in August 2008, when Russia attacked the former Soviet republic of Georgia. This invasion was Putin’s first military step toward reviving Russia’s control over central Asia.
On January 1, 2010, Putin further advanced his revival of the Soviet Union by building a Eurasian Economic Union with Kazakhstan and Belarus. Moscow has since been working to bring other former Soviet nations—like Ukraine, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan—into the union. Putin has said his goal is to enlarge the union to include all post-Soviet states (excluding the three Baltic EU member states).
Sino-Russian relations have evolved out of common interests. On the same day that the customs union was made official, Russia completed an oil pipeline and port complex that positions Moscow to become a more powerful oil exporter than Saudi Arabia. This pipeline, which runs from central Siberia to the Pacific coast, unlocks a gate through which Russia’s vast oilfields will gush into Asia’s energy-hungry economies. For over a century, Russia’s entire energy infrastructure has focused mainly on supplying Europe. Now Chinese, Korean, Indian and Japanese currency will flow into Russia, and the Kremlin will have the option of turning off Europe’s energy taps if the situation warrants it.
Putin said the purpose of such initiatives as the customs union and the pipeline is to form a bridge between Europe and the Asia-Pacific region. This “bridge” highlights the shift of Russian foreign-policy priorities from West to East.
This shift became staggeringly more pronounced in the aftermath of Putin’s invasion and annexation of Crimea in early 2014. After this illegal landgrab, Western powers blasted Russia for its moves and said they thought the entire world would view it as barbaric behavior. U.S. President Barack Obama, for example, said the nations of the world were “largely united” in believing Putin had violated Ukraine’s territory. But he was wrong! In a stunning fulfillment of biblical prophecy, which vindicates Mr. Armstrong’s predictions from all those years ago, the Asian powerhouses made clear that they support Putin. “Backing Russia is in China’s interests,” said the Global Times, a mouthpiece for China’s Communist Party, on March 5, 2014. “We shouldn’t disappoint Russia when it finds itself in a time of need.” The next day, a senior official from India made a similar statement.
Mr. Armstrong would never have bought into the fallacy that all countries have come to think like the West. The Plain Truth of October 1973 said, “The Communists haven’t suddenly changed ideologically. They haven’t come to believe that their system is unworkable. Neither have the Communists given up their hopes of leading the world to socialism. But they do profess that their goals can be reached by means of peaceful coexistence.“
Of all nations, Russia is uniquely able and willing to provide the secure source of energy needed to power China’s and India’s rapid industrial and economic growth. Russia has the oil, natural gas, uranium and nuclear technology needed to provide power for the billions of inhabitants of Earth’s two most populous countries.
In April 2014, India announced plans to build a $30 billion oil pipeline with Russia that runs through China’s restive Xinjiang province. If successful, the pipeline will be the most expensive in the world. A few weeks later, Russia and China finally wrapped up a 10-year series of talks on a $400 billion pipeline and gas deal—the largest known business transaction in history.
Russia and China both want to take advantage of a weakening United States. Both are reaping the benefits of close cooperation, and realizing that their very existence depends on good relations with each other. They share common philosophies economically, politically and militarily—and both have, in the West, a common enemy.
The way that China, for decades, counterbalanced Russia’s presence in Asia benefited the U.S. geopolitically. But that equation is changing as Russia and China march toward military alliance!
News of military and economic cooperation between Russia and China has become so commonplace in recent years that only the largest events receive much attention in the Western world. But we must remember that Mr. Armstrong predicted this development from a long way off, before any evidence of it appeared!
God has prophesied the final outcome of the emerging Asian alliance. Using those prophecies, Herbert Armstrong and the staff writers of the Plain Truth, as well as the editorial staff of the Trumpet, have accurately forewarned for many years what is coming for Asia. Mr. Armstrong died in 1986, but the Trumpet continues to declare that a nuclear World War iii is coming! Biblical prophecy powerfully supports Mr. Armstrong’s assertion that “the kings of the east” will forge an even deeper relationship in the years ahead—and eventually play a major part in the coming battle of Armageddon!
Although America and Britain are destined to fall, we still say it is not Russia, nor a Russian-Asian conglomerate, that these nations need fear, at least for their direct destruction. It is Germany and the revived “Holy” Roman Empire! Some will still scoff—even today. They say the Cold War is over and we need not fear a “hot” war anytime soon. But God has prophesied that our world is about to be rocked!
However, our message isn’t all gloom and doom. Just beyond the perilous times that lie ahead is unbelievably good news! That is the biggest news of all! Yet no major newsmagazine is announcing that good news because the world simply does not believe it!
That good news involves the gospel of the Kingdom of God. (The word gospel means “good news.”) The worldwide work that produces the Trumpet magazine is actively announcing the crisis at the close of this age—the crisis of which the greatest news forecaster of all times, Jesus Christ, warned about in Matthew 24. We are announcing a crisis that will usher in a new and better age, when all peoples everywhere will begin to enjoy peace and prosperity under God’s divine rulership.
The Land of the Rising Sun
The Plain Truth foresaw Japan’s place in the coming Asian super-alliance.
The Russian bear and Chinese dragon have long been watching as the American eagle’s global dominance wanes. Now they seek to build a global power bloc in the East to replace it. Herbert W. Armstrong believed that for a great Eastern power bloc to truly have global influence, it would have to be comprised of more than just Russia and China.
The experts at the intelligence firm Stratfor agree: “China and Russia, bound together into the tightest alliance, can change the regional balance in Eurasia but cannot affect the global balance …” (April 16, 2001). If you add Japan, however, with its cutting edge technological prowess, its 128 million people and its naval might, then this formidable bloc suddenly becomes a force that could transform the global balance of power.
After Japan wreaked some of the worst brutality in history on China before and during World War ii, and Toyko failed to apologize in a way that soothed Beijing, tight cooperation between the two seemed wildly unlikely. Yet, even in the thick of that tension, the Plain Truth predicted that one day the two Asian powers would rally together. “There is an utter inevitability of the ultimate tie-up between Japan and Red China!” the February 1963 Plain Truth said. “The big question is how long China will remain ‘Red’ and survive without a tie-up with Japanese capitalism.”
“Despite its many national, religious and political differences, Asia will ultimately be welded together into a common power bloc,” wrote the Plain Truth in April 1968. “It will ultimately send its military muscle into the Middle East at the return of Jesus Christ. This prophecy is recorded in Revelation 16:12 and 16. Japan will play a vital role in this battle.“ For decades, the Plain Truth forecast that Japan would be an important part of the future Eastern bloc that the Bible calls the “kings of the east”!
At the end of the Second World War, the United States softened the world’s rigid hostilities about Japanese aggression with these agreements: First came Article 9 of the constitution America wrote for Japan, which restricts the Japanese from building a military any larger than it needs for the self-defense of its immediate geographic arena. Then came the Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security between the U.S. and Japan, which codified Japan’s dependence on the U.S. for its defense, saying America would defend Japan by stationing U.S. troops near potential conflict zones in the region.
One somewhat unexpected result of this agreement was that after World War ii, instead of first rebuilding its military, Japan was able to pour its resources into becoming an economic superpower.
Notice what Mr. Armstrong wrote in the Plain Truth, March 1971: “Japan today has no military establishment. Some United States forces are still there. But we should not lose sight of the fact that Japan has become so powerful economically that it could build a military force of very great power very rapidly.”
Sure enough, that is now happening in earnest.
Tokyo on the WarPath
Today, Japan, boasts one of the top 10 military arsenals in the world. And with four times more major warships than the British Royal Navy, Tokyo commands the second-largest naval force on the planet. Still, despite all its industrial, economic and naval strength, Japan has until quite recently been seen as a benign power, constrained by memories of the nuclear explosions that ended its past imperial exploits.
The events of September 11, 2001, did much to open the door to increased Japanese militarism. Just one month after the terrorist attacks on the United States, Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi adopted antiterrorism legislation that enabled the Japanese military to supply logistical support for America’s war on terrorism.
Why was Japan able to enter the battle theater so readily? A glimpse beneath the surface shows that Japan had not, in reality, been the benign power it had portrayed itself to be since its 1945 defeat.
For decades, Japan had been evading strict enforcement of Article 9, which states that “the Japanese people forever renounce war as a sovereign right of the nation and the threat or use of force as means of settling international disputes. … [L]and, sea and air forces, as well as other war potential, will never be maintained.” The resurrection of Japan’s military actually began as early as 1950, when a National Police Reserve was established as a replacement for American troops sent into the Korean War. Then in 1954, the Japanese government transformed this police force into the Japan Self-Defense Force (sdf)—with Washington’s full support.
As time ticked by and memories of World War ii faded, the sdf gradually expanded its scope. In 1992, Japan passed the UN Peacekeeping Cooperation Law, which allowed the sdf to take part in certain nonmilitary aspects of UN missions. Japanese soldiers were then allowed to be stationed outside Japan’s borders. Then came the 9/11 attacks of 2001, which brought about changes the New York Times called “the most significant transformation in Japan’s military since World War ii” (July 23, 2007).
Japan’s march toward militarization sped up from 2004 to 2010 during which time it sent noncombat troops to Iraq, Indonesia, Nepal, Israel, Djibouti, Somalia and Haiti. During the same time frame, Japan made several moves away from being a purely “self-defense” force. It began looking to use space for military purposes. Its Defense Agency was upgraded to become a full-fledged ministry, giving it a greatly amplified voice in the cabinet. It gained the capacity to fly f-2s more than 1,700 miles without refueling. It dropped 500-pound live bombs as part of training exercises.
On March 11, 2011, the magnitude-9.0 Tohoku earthquake struck Japan, spawning a tsunami and causing a severe nuclear crisis. The sdf leaped to action, coordinating and carrying out rescue operations with more than 100,000 soldiers—an utterly unprecedented number in the postwar era. “It is no exaggeration to say that the earthquake has spurred the most significant Japanese military operations since the end of World War ii,” World Politics Review wrote April 13, 2011. Perhaps most significantly, the rescue efforts drastically improved the Japanese public’s perception of its nation’s military forces. In fact, the sdf is now experiencing its highest level of public support in decades.
With many of the taboos already broken, it would be a small step for Japan to amend its pacifist constitution. And that is precisely what Japan’s current leadership is angling to do.
“I will do my best for the future and for amending the constitution. That is my historical mission,” Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said in August 2013. Two months later, Japan said it was “reexamining the legal basis for its security including exercising its right of collective self-defense, expanding its defense budget, reviewing its National Defense Program Guidelines, and strengthening its capability of defending its sovereign territory.”
In early 2014, Abe said, “Japan cannot be locked inside a box created 40 or 50 years ago.” The box he referred to is the one restricting Japan from many military actions. In light of North Korea’s nuclearization, China’s intensifying belligerence, and the U.S.’s retreat from the international stage, Abe and a growing number of Japanese leaders and citizens want to unhinge that box.
The Japanese have long had the ability to do so. It is now only a question of Tokyo deciding that it will unlock it and emerge a full-fledged military power.
Stratfor founder George Friedman and coauthor Meredith Leband wrote, “Japan’s emergence as a great military power in the future depends more on its will than its ability. In order to have a world-class military force in a few short years, Japan merely has to decide that it needs one” (The Coming War With Japan; emphasis added).
Abe apparently agrees with this analysis. “Someone has to decide” the defense posture Japan needs for its security situation, he said in early 2014. On July 1 of that year, Abe went beyond talk. That day, Tokyo “reinterpreted” a key section of its pacifist constitution: the ban on collective self-defense. For the preceding seven years, Tokyo had interpreted this section as strictly limiting Japan’s forces to acting in its own defense, and never in defense of its allies, and never in any conflict away from Japan.
The July 1 move means Japan can now use its large, cutting-edge military in ways that would have been unthinkable just a few years ago: If a U.S. ship is under fire, Japan can assist it; if a North Korean missile is aimed at an Australian ship, Japan can shoot it down; if the United Nations is involved in a “gray zone” activity, Japanese troops can participate.
The reinterpretation paves the way for greater changes to Japan’s constitution. As a result, for the first time since World War ii, Japan could soon officially have first-strike capabilities against potential threats.
Will Japan Go Nuclear?
Nuclear weaponry, also, is only a matter of decision for the Japanese. The July 1966 Plain Truth stated, “With China possessing the bomb, does Japan dare not build one of her own? Japan is the supergiant of the Orient, rising to dizzying heights of economic prosperity. As we have reported in past issues of this magazine, the world is yet to hear of alarming trends in Japan! … Japan could join the ‘nuclear club’ any time!”
The Plain Truth and other publications under Mr. Armstrong wrote several more such statements over the years. In April 1968, it said, “Washington officials frankly admit that they expect Japan to develop a big military establishment to assist the U.S. in Asian power politics. One Tokyo observer stated that the United States has no other alternative but to push Japan toward eventually becoming a thermonuclear power.”
It is true that if Japan—which already has a highly developed civilian nuclear industry—decided to do so, it could become an independent nuclear power within a single year. Voices within Japan calling for just such action are getting louder. In July 2011, Tokyo Gov. Shintaro Ishihara said, “Japan should absolutely possess nuclear weapons,” citing China and North Korea as potential threats. Abe himself has echoed these same nuclear sentiments.
Japan is taking advantage of the regional tensions to strengthen its position in the region as America’s power declines. Given its technological prowess, this position could very rapidly include membership in the “nuclear club,” just as the Plain Truth prophesied.
Japan is rapidly becoming a power to be feared. The April 1968 Plain Truth warned, “Despite popular belief, Japan is not permanently committed to a pro-Western position. America has foolishly followed the policy of assuming that … Germany and Japan can be converted to the virtues of democracy in less than a generation. … Both Japanese and Germans are willing, for the present, to put up with their so-called democratic form of government—until some serious internal crisis is precipitated. … Japan tolerates her present form of government as long as it is economically expedient. If the time were ever to come—and it will come—that the Japanese could not feed off of American aid, we would witness a remarkable change in attitude toward the United States. Friendship would quickly evaporate.”
Japan’s Place in the Alliance
Analysts occasionally mention the biblical word Armageddon found in Revelation 16:16, but it is rare to hear talk of the kings of the East discussed a few verses earlier in the chapter. And, though many of the specific details of how this Eastern superpower will form in the end time are still unknown, prophecy is unmistakably clear about the fact that it will happen. And it will almost certainly include Japan to one degree or another, as Mr. Armstrong said.
Before and during World War ii, Japan sought to extend its empire via military might. It was the only industrialized nation in Asia, so it was able to chart its own course and dominate the region on its own. But after some seven decades of decolonization, development and growth in the Far East, the Japanese now face a vastly mightier China and Russia, and a much more industrialized collective Asian sphere. Now, Japan would have to fulfill its goals using very different means from those it used in the 1940s. Any dominance Japan now seeks in the Eastern Hemisphere must be done via alliances and treaties.
A Beijing-Tokyo alliance sounds unlikely at present given the mutual suspicion and animosity the two have toward each other. But as U.S. influence fades, China, Japan, Russia and their Asian neighbors are dramatically repositioning themselves.
A major step toward an East Asia alliance was achieved in 2010, when a free-trade area between China and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (asean)—which includes Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam—came to life. This economic union gives China a commanding voice within an Asian bloc of nearly 2 billion consumers, comprised of countries with a combined gross domestic product of $6 billion. The association is the world’s largest free-trade zone in terms of population. Japan is closely linked to asean as a dialogue partner, and as a member of the asean Plus Three grouping that includes China, Japan and South Korea.
All it would take is a major regional crisis to spur the Japanese into action to offer their naval might in particular as a guarantor of security to their neighbors. Japan has this powerful tool to use as a trade-off in negotiations for economic cooperation from the rest of Asia.
In the event of a regional crisis, Tokyo might be able to persuade nations like South Korea, Taiwan or India to form an alliance to counter the congealing China-Russia axis. It is also possible that Russia and Japan will temporarily band together in an effort to counter China. (In fact, Abe has spearheaded a historic turn toward Russia, and is working to thaw the decades-old iciness between Tokyo and Moscow.)
But the strong implication of Bible prophecy is that even if Japan does form some kind of counteralliance, it would not be long before it threw its lot in with China. As loath as Japan is to playing second fiddle to China, many in Tokyo know that working toward a Pan-Asian future is the only way Japan can come to wield global influence proportionate to the size of its economy and the weight of its industry. By the same token, Beijing knows that to truly alter the global balance of power, it needs the technological prowess and naval might of Japan.
China and Japan will eventually combine their power, with the ultimate intention of forcing the U.S. out of the western Pacific. Then, as has been the strategy of the European Union, the Asian political and economic cooperation will give way to a military alliance. Russia, China and Japan are moving closer together, just as Mr. Armstrong said they would. Now all it will take is a sudden catastrophic shock to weld the union together.
The Plain Truth’s most important prophecies were of the wonderful World Tomorrow.
As this booklet has clearly shown, Herbert W. Armstrong was able to see and publicly declare many prophecies because he was willing to submit to the authority of the Bible. We have highlighted only a few of those that concern major events now shaping the future of our existence.
One of the earliest prophecies of which he spoke, however—possibly the first and certainly the most important—has only been touched on here. It is an event that will bring the final, peaceful end of all the prophecies spoken of. It is a prophecy he began teaching back in the 1930s: the prophecy of the soon-coming government of God in the wonderful World Tomorrow.
Mr. Armstrong first determined to broadcast “the wonderful news of the World Tomorrow” in 1933. Later he wrote, “All I had in mind, as the World Tomorrow program was being planned late in 1933, was to serve God faithfully wherever He should lead …” (Autobiography of Herbert W. Armstrong).
Of that prophecy, he wrote in 1966, “You don’t have to believe it! It will happen, regardless. It is sure—the world’s only sure hope. This advance good news of tomorrow is as certain as the rising of tomorrow’s sun. Humanity won’t bring it about—it is going to be done to us. Humanity is going to be forced to be happy—to enjoy world peace—to see universal abundance and joy fill the Earth” (The Wonderful World Tomorrow—What It Will Be Like).
As the saying goes, “Hindsight is 20/20.” It is easy to see the truth after the fact. That kind of vision, however, is of limited value. What we really need is the ability to know what is coming before it happens. This booklet has shown how you can have “20/20” vision of the future.
We have looked back at the prophetic knowledge of Herbert W. Armstrong and shown the fulfillment as it is happening, so you—the reader—can plan your future.
“Winston Churchill declared before the United States Congress: ‘He must indeed have a blind soul who cannot see that some great purpose and design is being worked out here below of which we have the honor to be the faithful servants,’” Mr. Armstrong wrote. “It is true, though almost totally unrealized: Mankind was put on this Earth for a purpose! And the Maker of mankind sent along with the human product of His making an Instruction Book to reveal that purpose and to guide man in happily, enjoyably fulfilling it” (The United States and Britain in Prophecy).
Gen. Douglas MacArthur spoke the truth when he said, “Men since the beginning of time have sought peace. … Military alliances, balances of powers, leagues of nations, all in turn failed, leaving the only path to be by way of the crucible of war. The utter destructiveness of war now blots out this alternative. We have had our last chance. If we will not devise some greater and equitable system, Armageddon will be at our door. The problem basically is theological and involves a spiritual recrudescence and improvement of human character that will synchronize with our almost matchless advances in science, art, literature and all the material and cultural developments of the past 2,000 years. It must be of the spirit if we are to save the flesh.”
It’s all about vision. Dutch philosopher Erasmus said, “In the country of the blind, the one-eyed man is king.” He was talking about vision—one man with vision in a land filled with those who refuse to see. Today, very few see the world as a “seething pot” ready to boil over! (Jeremiah 1:13). Yet anyone with “half an eye” should have that discernment.
Mr. Armstrong warned of what is just ahead: “In this folly of educated ignorance, it has become fashionable today and intellectually titillating to ignore the great basic cause of all things; the fact of the purpose being worked out here below, and the master plan for its working out; the invisible but Supreme Power now soon to intervene and drastically alter the course of history—before mankind blasts itself out of existence” (ibid).
Yes, as Mr. Armstrong said, the greatest prophecy beyond it all is that mankind will not self-destruct! God is about to intervene to save humanity. That’s the good news! Herbert W. Armstrong saw it well before 1945.
Today, God’s warning message of the coming events, as well as the good news of the wonderful World Tomorrow—the work started through Mr. Armstrong—continues to be trumpeted around the world by this work as a witness!
You can escape the horror of the next few years by heeding that witness.
What choice will you make—blindness or vision? Hopefully, we will have the vision to look ahead—accept the revelation and guidance provided in the Bible, and reap the blessings that come with that decision.