But an unexpected war is imminent, according to best-selling new biblical analysis
WASHINGTON – Even though Russia has advanced south into Georgia, a best-selling new Bible prophecy book says suggestions this signals an imminent march into the Middle East are mistaken.
Instead, says Bill Salus, author of “Isralestine,” the world is about to be surprised by a different kind of devastating regional war involving Israel and its Arab neighbors.
“Isralestine: The Ancient Blueprints of the Future Middle East,” currently rising to the top of the prophecy charts, says scholars have missed a significant piece of what the Bible reveals about the future of the region. And it has many of them reconsidering their prophetic model for the near future.
“You can set Russia’s recent invasion of Georgia and Israel’s concern over Iran’s nuclear aspirations on the back burner, not that these topics lack importance,” says Salus. “The stage is not adequately set for the highly publicized Ezekiel 38 and 39 Russian-Iranian nuclear-equipped consortia of nations to invade Israel. Psalm 83 comes first, and then Ezekiel 38 follows on its heels like a Goliath shadow. There are two distinct invasions of Israel, one building upon the other, with both occurring sequentially in the Middle East.”
According to Salus, the next war in the Middle East will involve Israel’s closest Arab neighbors – not faraway Iran or Russia, the re-emerging military power to the north. He says a sometimes overlooked or misinterpreted passage in Psalm 83 is the key to understand the next major prophetic development. He says it suggests Palestinians, al-Qaida, Hezbollah, Hamas, Syrians, Saudis, Egyptians and Jordanians will confederate and launch an all-out war against Israel before what has been called the “battle of Armageddon” involving another alliance of Iran, Russia and Turkey.
“Indeed something is very near, but it is not Armageddon,” says Salus.
The theory has many long-time students of Bible prophecy sitting up and taking notice.
The result of this regional war will be devastation for the Arabs who launch it and startling territorial and resource gains by Israel, claims the theory. It is this unexpected development that will precipitate the final showdown involving what has been termed “the Ezekiel invasion.”
Editor’s Note: The following report is excerpted from Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin, the premium online newsletter published by the founder of WND. Subscriptions are $99 a year or, for monthly trials, just $9.95 per month for credit card users, and provide instant access for the complete reports.
Russia may have an important reason for reasserting itself in the Caucasus beyond recalling the grandeur of the old Soviet Union or even controlling the flow of oil from the Caspian Sea: It may be seeking control over a buffer zone between its borders and a rising level of radical Islam, according to a report from Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin.
The region that includes the North Caucasus from the Caspian Sea to the Black Sea has come to be referred to as the Caucasus Emirate. It also includes the Russian portion of North Ossetia and South Ossetia, which is part of the Republic of Georgia.
Also in Georgia is Abkhazia, another breakaway province, which is becoming increasingly Islamic and has undertaken operations in the past with Islamic rebels from Chechnya.
The region includes other neighboring Russian regions of Ingushetia, Dagestan, Kabardino-Balkaria, Karachayevo-Cherkessia and Chechnya, which borders Georgia to the north.
Islamic radicals look upon the Caucasus Emirate to include all of the North Caucasus and South Caucasus, which comprise Georgia, Azerbaijan and Armenia. The commander-in-chief of the Caucasus Emirate is Dokka Umarov.
The rebels are said to be active in all the mountain areas of the North Caucasus, from the Caspian Sea to the Black Sea.
One of the main ideologists of the Caucasus Emirates, Movladi Udugov, said the militants had been monitoring Russian movements near Georgia. As director of the National Information Service of the Caucasus Emirate out of Ingushetia, Udugov said its intelligence had warned him that Russia planned to attack Georgia in August. Ingushetia is east of North Ossetia in Russia.
“So far, neither Tbilisi nor Washington has turned to us with any requests or proposals,” he said.
The Caucasus Emirate is anti-Russian and monitors closely Russian troop movements. Udugov said that rebel websites had monitored Russian armored columns from Chechnya to North Ossetia and then to the Rokcky tunnel located on the South Ossetian side of the Russian-Georgian border.
The rebel websites also had reported a large column of Russian tanks and armored personnel carriers moving from Chechnya to North Ossetia via Ingushetia.
In pursuing their anti-Russian stance, Udugov and Dokka Umarov have pressed the Caucasus countries to unite. They said all Caucasians have a common culture, but Moscow has sought to foment hatred of Caucasians among Russians.
“The Russian leadership also acts like fascist thugs that kill Caucasians on the streets of Russian cities,” Umarov said.
“People in all the Muslim-inhabited territories that were conquered by Russia are periodically subjected to genocide,” Udugov said. “So if we are to speak of the adversary as the source of a threat that involves violence, enemy No. 1 is Russia. With this enemy, we are at war.”
Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin is the premium, online intelligence news source edited and published by the founder of WND.
Middle East network covering DNC from office in Denver suburb
Residents of suburban Golden, Colo., say they don’t want the Middle East television network Al Jazeera setting up a broadcast office in town for the coming Democratic convention, forcing the city manager to withdraw an invitation to network officials to join him for a picnic.
According to the Denver Post, Golden City Manager Mike Bestor withdrew an invitation to the crew for the news channel known for broadcasting updates from al-Qaida.
The controversy arose when area residents discovered the network was setting up a base of operations from which to cover the DNC in the Denver suburb.
Bestor said he issued the barbecue invitation to Al Jazeera English officials as a private citizen after the network said it wanted to do interviews at the gathering. The network had contracted with a local bar, the Buffalo Rose, to use as a base for its operations during the DNC.
But residents took their complaints to the city council, demanding officials not allow the network to broadcast from town.
“I am not happy about Al Jazeera infiltrating our small town and portraying us however they see fit,” resident Dawne Montoya told KWGN-TV.
City officials said the Arab network approached them about broadcasting from Golden and no city money would go towards the project. They stand by their decision, even though residents are objecting.
“We treated them like any other news organization, we believe in the First Amendment, freedom of speech, freedom of press is so vitally important,” Bestor told the station.
Al Jazeera representatives contended their network is misrepresented in America and has no agenda but to show the world what American politics are all about.
“I think it’s unfortunate when people try to stifle different voices when people don’t want to hear or allow other people to hear what is being said,” spokesman Rob Reynolds told KWGN.
In a statement on the city’s website, officials said the city council “listened to a large volume of public comment” regarding Al Jazeera during its city council meeting Aug. 21.
The city concluded it “doesn’t have the right to restrict or prohibit Al Jazeera or any other news agency from broadcasting out of the city, whether we approve of their coverage or not, whether we share their perspectives or not, whether we find their coverage offensive or not.”
The city statement said Bestor had offered the invitation to Al Jazeera to his barbecue “believing that doing so would enable him to ensure that a representative group of Golden citizens were interviewed and that Golden would be “fairly represented.”
But he apologized for the “divisiveness” his actions had brought about and confirmed he did not mean any disrespect for “the many brave veterans and men and women currently serving this country in the Armed Forces.”
Al Jazeera English, a division of the parent Al Jazeera, debuted in 2006 and claims 100 million viewers worldwide. The parent, an Arabic language network, has been controversial for its broadcast of videos showing Osama bin Laden and other al-Qaida leaders.
Just weeks earlier, the parent company admitted to “unethical” behavior in its coverage of Israel’s release of convicted Lebanese terrorist Samir Kuntar.
The Israeli newspaper Haaretz said Israel’s government press office raised the issue of the network’s coverage of the welcome-home festivities for Kuntar in which the head of Al Jazeera’s Beirut office, Ghassan bin Jiddo, praised the terrorist, calling him a “pan-Arab hero.”
Kuntar was convicted of murdering four Israelis, two adults and two children, during a 1979 terrorist attack. He was released last month as part of a deal with Hezbollah. In exchange, Israel received the bodies of kidnapped soldiers Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev.
Haaretz reported bin Jiddo previously was awarded Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah’s first interview of the Second Lebanon War. But bin Jiddo also told Syrian television officials he never would agree to interview Israelis.