You may view the 5 minute update this week via audio:
In this week’s 5 minute update, we focused on:
1) The current status of the Israel / PLO peace process
2) The prospects for war with Syria and Iran
3) The US and European Debt Situation
Israel and the PLO had their fifth round of meetings in Jordan on January 25. The Palestinians believe that January 26 is the deadline set by the Quartet (EU, UN, US and Russia) in September for Israel and the PLO to submit their views on borders and security. At the January 25th meeting, Israel presented its principles for the borders of a PLO state. It stated that in any permanent agreement between Israel and the Palestinians, most of the Israelis who live in the West Bank will remain in Israeli territory while the Palestinians in the West Bank will be in the area allotted for a future Palestinian state. The Palestinians rejected the plan as a non-starter. The Palestinians say that talks with Israel have now ended with no progress and they will have a meeting on February 4 with the Arab League to discuss their options and future directions. Now that the PLO says that talks have ended, the Palestinians have indicated that they would like to try again at the United Nations to get recognition of a PLO state based upon 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital. Israel said that it would like to continue talks with the Palestinians. The Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood which was just elected to power in recent elections said that they reject dialogue with Israel. This endangers the 1979 peace treaty between Egypt and Israel. In order to support the PLO position, the European Union will give about 55 million euros to a UN Palestinian refugee agency. Russia supports the Palestinians being members of other international organization besides UNESCO which they joined recently at the UN.
In a published poll showing the beliefs of Israeli society, 80% of Jews believe that God exists. 90% of Jews celebrate Passover. 65% believe that the Torah is God-given. However, only 37% of Jews believe that their are Biblical consequences for not following the Torah. 58% believe that shopping centers and restaurants should be open on Sabbath. 55% believe in the coming of the Messiah. 46% of Jews in Israel identify themselves as being secular. 22% define themselves as Orthodox or Ultra-Orthodox. 61% believe that Conservative or Reform Judaism (whose values conflict with Orthodox Judaism) should have equal status with the Orthodox. 51% favor civil marriage in Israel. 67% of Ultra-Orthodox Jews believe that the husband should work and support the family while the wife stays at home to raise the children. However, only 20% of secular Jews are of this opinion. The survey results indicate that most Jews favor upholding Jewish tradition but favor individual choice in expressing their Jewish faith and opinions.
An agreement to divide Jerusalem and establish a PLO state is a tribulation event.
The link to these articles are as follows:
1) Palestinians: Peace talks end with no progress
2) Israel presents the Palestinians with its stance on borders
3) PA officials: Israeli border proposal a non-starter
4) EU gives €55.4m. to UN Palestinian refugee agency
5) Russia backs Palestinian membership of intn’l organizations
6) Muslim Brotherhood repeats: No talks with Israel
7) Israeli Jews becoming more religious, poll finds
8.) Survey: Record number of Israeli Jews believe in God
The Arab League demanded that President Bashar Assad of Syria should open a dialogue with his political opposition within two weeks, form a coalition government in two months and then allow free elections. Syria rejected this proposal. As a result, the Arab League wants the United Nations Security Council to endorse its Syria peace plan. Russia is opposed to the fall of the Assad government. Russia who is a permanent member of the UN Security Council and has veto power regarding any UN resolution is also opposed to any sanctions against Syria, foreign troops on Syrian soil or a no-fly zone. In order to protect Syria, Russia signed a contract with Syria to sell them combat jets. Russia’s foreign minister, Sergey Lavrov warned that outside encouragement of antigovernment uprisings in Syria by the West could lead to “a very big war”. Mr. Lavrov said foreign governments were arming “militants and extremists” in Syria. In essence, civil war is taking place in Syria. As a result, Assad’s rule on power is shaky. Several months ago, Bashar Assad said that before he would be removed from power that he would launch missiles against Tel Aviv. If he did so, this would force Israel to retaliate with missiles against Damascus.
A war with Syria where Damascus is destroyed (Isaiah 17) is a tribulation event.
The link to these articles is as follows:
1) Syria: Bashar al-Assad given ultimatum to oversee transition to democracy
2) Arab League will ask UNSC to back its Syria peace plan
3) Syria rejects roadmap for Assad power transfer
4) Russia says it opposes sanctions on Syria
5) Report: Russia to deliver combat jets to Syria
6) Western intervention in Arab Spring could end in ‘very big war,’ Russia warns
The European Union agreed to ban imports of oil from Iran. However, in order to not hurt the fragile economies of Greece and Italy who are the European countries most heavily dependent upon Iranian oil, the full embargo will not go into effect until July 1. Meanwhile, the US imposed sanctions on Iran’s 3rd largest bank making it no longer able to access the US financial system. EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said: “I want the pressure of these sanctions to result in negotiations with Iran. I want to stress, however, that sanctions are not an end in of themselves. We’ve often talked about this being part of a twin-part approach, that the purpose of sanctions is to put pressure on Iran to come back to the negotiation table.” In order to bypass the sanctions upon the Iranian banking system, India agreed to pay for its purchases of Iranian oil with gold instead of the US dollar. India is Iran’s second largest customer for oil after China.
Israel Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu welcomed the US and EU sanctions as a “step in the right direction.” However, Israel’s Defense Minister Ehud Barak expressed disappointment that the EU oil embargo on Iran will not start until July 1 and that the US sanctions were against Iran’s 3rd largest bank and not its central bank. Israel insisted that it will maintain its right to attack Iran if it believes that Iran will acquire a nuclear weapon and the international community is acting too late to stop it.
While the US is giving an opportunity for Iran to change its mind and negotiate with the US and EU to stop its nuclear program, it is preparing for war with Iran. It is being estimated that 50,000 US troops will have accumulated on the islands of Socotra and Masirah by mid-February. This is in addition to the 50,000 US troops that are already in the Persian Gulf area. These 100,000 US troops in the area is the largest build-up of US troops in the Persian Gulf since the US invaded Iraq in 2003. In the first week of March, three US aircraft carriers and their strike groups plus a French carrier arrive in the Persian Gulf, the Gulf of Oman and the Arabian Sea: They are the USS Abraham Lincoln, USS Carl Vinson, USS Enterprise and the Charles de Gaulle nuclear-powered aircraft carrier. A fourth US carrier will be standing by in the Pacific Ocean, a few days’ sailing time from the water off Iran’s coast. By early March, the US will have piled up enough military strength within reach of Iran to exercise its military option. It is being estimated that the US could strike Iran as early as spring and as late as the fall. Gen. Martin Dempsey, the chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff said that it would be too premature to attack Iran right away as it would be destabilizing to the US and world economy. Dempsey further stated that their is a disagreement between the US and Israel regarding how soon an attack should be made upon Iran to stop its nuclear program. Israel sees that the time is short. The US and the EU are willing to wait to see if sanctions will cause Iran to want to negotiate to give up its nuclear program before it decides to attack Iran militarily to stop it. The timing of this attack is most likely targeted for the fall.
Russia and China strongly oppose the sanctions against Iran. Russian Foregin Minister Sergei Lavron said: “Under such kind of [US and EU] pressure Iran will make no concessions and no correction of its policy”. Russian premier Vladimir Putin Foreign Minister said that the US wants to control the world and strongly condemned the US interfering in other countries affairs. China’s foreign ministries said: “To blindly pressure and impose sanctions on Iran are not constructive approaches [to resolve the conflict]”.
A US war with Iran is a tribulation event.
The link to these articles is as follows:
1) EU bans Iranian oil, Tehran responds with threats
2) US slaps sanctions on Iranian state-owned bank
3) India to pay gold instead of dollars for Iranian oil. Oil and gold markets stunned
4) PM welcomes EU Iran sanctions as ‘step in right direction’
5) Barak slams EU oil embargo’s delay to July. Israel’s hand ever near trigger
6) Barak calls on world to stop Iranian nuclear danger
7) Massive US Military Buildup on Two Strategic Islands: Socotra and Masirah
8.) Dempsey: Strike against Iran would be ‘premature’
9) Benjamin Netanyahu renews speculation over military action against Iran
10) Iran says sanctions to fail, repeats Hormuz threat
11) The USS Abraham Lincoln transits Hormuz. Scene set for US-Iranian talks
12) Britain, US and France send warships through Strait of Hormuz
13) Russia lashes out at new EU sanctions on Iran
14) Russia slams EU boycott of Iranian oil
15) The U.S. wants to control everything, says Putin as he blasts America for interfering in other countries’ affairs
16) China decries EU sanctions on Tehran
In an interview at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, George Soros expressed concern with the current economic situation in Europe and the US. He said that the best case scenario for a possible euro crisis due to the financial troubles with Greece, Italy, Spain and Portugal is deflation. The worst-case scenario is the collapse of the international financial system. He warned that this could result in violence on the streets of Europe and the US unless the issues of unemployment and debt were solved. If not, he said that this could lead to the erosion of civil liberties and installation of a police state. In order to resolve the financial crisis in Europe, German Chancellor, Angela Merkel called for a more federal European Union. She desires that all member states of the European Union join the euro. She also called for a “stronger European Parliament where the heads of state and government will function a bit like a second chamber and the European Court of Justice will be uphold the rule of European law”. This would accomplish the goals of the original founders of the European Union who wanted a European currency and a Federal Europe to govern the political system.
In a major blow to the dollar remaining the international world’s reserve currency, China and Japan unveiled plans last month to promote direct exchange of their currencies thus not using the US dollar in trade between them. China has made previous agreements with Russia, India and Thailand to do the same. As a result, China is now discussing with South Korea economic trade that will involve the direct exchange of their currencies. As more countries continue to trade between themselves without using the US dollar to settle their transactions, the US dollar poses the risk of a major devaluation. This would result in the collapse of the world economy, the US losing its economic power and strength in the world and the need to have a world reserve currency.
Worldwide economic collapse resulting in a one world government with one-world currency is a tribulation event.
The link to these articles are as follows:
From a Biblical prophetic perspective, the reason why the God of Israel would allow these events to happen is because it will result in the end of the exile of the house of Jacob and the reunification of the 12 tribes of Israel (Ephraim and Judah).
We will to be “watchmen on the walls of Jerusalem” and we will not rest until the God of Israel makes Jerusalem a praise in the earth (Isaiah 62).
Shalom in Yeshua the Messiah,
Hebraic Heritage Ministries Int’l