sun arises, and the sun goes down and draws toward its
Draws Toward Its Place
Greetings! Except for the last three hundred years a geocentric universe was the generally held belief throughout the world rather than heliocentric universe.
“Copernicanism was the first major victory of science over religion.” (Steven Dutch of the University of Wisconsin–Madison)
“Morris Berman quotes survey results that show currently some 20% of the U.S. population believe that the sun goes around the Earth (geocentricism) rather than the Earth goes around the sun (heliocentricism), while a further 9% claimed not to know. Polls conducted by Gallup in the 1990s found that 16% of Germans, 18% of Americans and 19% of Britons hold that the Sun revolves around the Earth. A study conducted in 2005 by Jon D. Miller of Northwestern University, an expert in the public understanding of science and technology, found that about 20%, or one in five, of American adults believe that the Sun orbits the Earth. According to 2011 VTSIOM poll, 32% of Russians believe that the Sun orbits the Earth.”
The Book of Enoch would also seem to support a geocentric view of the universe in chapters 72-75, under the heading “The Book of the Courses of the Heavenly Luminaries”.
“And I saw six portals in which the sun rises, and six portals in
which the sun sets and the moon rises and sets in these portals, and
the leaders of the stars and those whom they lead: six in the east
and six in the west, and all following each other in accurately
corresponding order: also many windows to the right and left of these
portals.” Enoch 72:3
Below are some verses we thought you may find interesting related to the subject matter. All the Old Testament verses come from the Septuagint version of the Bible. The New Testament verses are from the King James Version.
Have a great week ahead.
Joshua said, Let the sun stand over against Gabaon, and the moon over against the valley of Ælon. And the sun and the moon stood still, until God executed vengeance on their enemies; and the sun stood still in the midst of heaven; it did not proceed to set till the end of one day. Joshua 10:12-13
The sun was exalted, and the moon stood still in her course. Habakkuk 3:11
Their voice is gone out into all the earth, and their words to the ends of the world. In the sun he has set his tabernacle; and he comes forth as a bridegroom out of his chamber: he will exult as a giant to run his course. His going forth is from the extremity of heaven, and his circuit to the other end of heaven. Psalm 19:4-6
The sun arises, and the sun goes down and draws toward its place; arising there it proceeds southward, and goes round toward the north. Ecclesiastes 1:5
Let the whole earth fear before him; let the earth be established, and not be moved. 1 Chronicles 16:30
The Lord reigns; he has clothed himself with honour: the Lord has clothed and girded himself with strength; for he has established the world, which shall not be moved. Psalm 93:1
Say among the heathen, The Lord reigns:
for he has established the world so that it shall not be moved.
It is he that comprehends the circle of the earth. Isaiah 40:22
He stretches out the north wind upon nothing, and he upon nothing hangs the earth. Job 26:7
Wilt thou establish with him foundations for the ancient heavens? they are strong as a molten mirror. Job 37:18
Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken. Matthew 24:29
And the stars of heaven shall fall, and the powers that are in heaven shall be shaken. Mark 13:25
And the stars of heaven fell unto the earth, even as a fig tree casteth her untimely figs, when she is shaken of a mighty wind. Revelation 6:13
And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth. Revelation 12:4
And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the water, and let it be a division between water and water, and it was so. And God made the firmament, and God divided between the water which was under the firmament and the water which was above the firmament. Genesis 1:6-7
In the six hundredth year of the life of Noe, in the second month, on the twenty-seventh day of the month, on this day all the fountains of the abyss were broken up, and the flood-gates of heaven were opened. Genesis 7:11
For windows have been opened in heaven, and the foundations of the earth shall be shaken. Isaiah 24:18
Geocentrism (Edited from a much longer article.)
In astronomy, the geocentric model (also known as geocentrism, or the Ptolemaic system) is a description of the cosmos where Earth is at the orbital center of all celestial bodies. This model served as the predominant cosmological system in many ancient civilizations such as ancient Greece including the noteworthy systems of Aristotle (see Aristotelian physics) and Ptolemy. As such, they believed that the Sun, Moon, stars, and naked eye planets circled Earth.
Two commonly made observations supported the idea that Earth was the center of the Universe. The stars, the sun, and planets appear to revolve around Earth each day, making Earth the center of that system. The stars were thought to be on a celestial sphere, with the earth at its center, that rotated each day, using a line through the north and south pole as an axis. The stars closest to the equator appeared to rise and fall the greatest distance, but each star circled back to its rising point each day. The second observation supporting the geocentric model was that the Earth does not seem to move from the perspective of an Earth-bound observer, and that it is solid, stable, and unmoving.
Ancient Greeks believed that the motions of the planets were circular and not elliptical, a view that was not challenged in Western culture until the 17th century through the synthesis of theories by Copernicus and Kepler.
The astronomical predictions of Ptolemy's geocentric model were used to prepare astrological and astronomical charts for over 1500 years. The geocentric model held sway into the early modern age, but from the late 16th century onward was gradually superseded by the heliocentric model of Copernicus, Galileo and Kepler. There was much resistance to the transition between these two theories. Christian theologians were reluctant to reject a theory that agreed with Bible passages (e.g. "Sun, stand you still upon Gibeon", Joshua 10:12 – King James 2000 Bible). Others felt a new, unknown theory could not subvert an accepted consensus for geocentrism.
In the 4th century BC, two influential Greek philosophers, Plato and his student Aristotle, wrote works based on the geocentric model. According to Plato, the Earth was a sphere, stationary at the center of the universe. The stars and planets were carried around the Earth on spheres or circles, arranged in the order (outwards from the center): Moon, Sun, Venus, Mercury, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, fixed stars, with the fixed stars located on the celestial sphere.
Eudoxus of Cnidus, who worked with Plato, developed a more mathematical explanation of the planets' motion based on Plato's dictum stating that all phenomena in the heavens can be explained with uniform circular motion. Aristotle elaborated on Eudoxus' system.
In the fully developed Aristotelian system, the spherical Earth is at the center of the universe, and all other heavenly bodies are attached to 47–55 transparent concentric spheres which rotate around the Earth.
Adherence to the geocentric model stemmed largely from several important observations. First of all, if the Earth did move, then one ought to be able to observe the shifting of the fixed stars due to stellar parallax. In short, if the earth was moving, the shapes of the constellations should change considerably over the course of a year. If they did not appear to move, the stars are either much farther away than the Sun and the planets than previously conceived, making their motion undetectable, or in reality they are not moving at all.
Another observation used in favor of the geocentric model at the time was the apparent consistency of Venus' luminosity, which implies that it is usually about the same distance from Earth, which in turn is more consistent with geocentrism than heliocentrism. In reality, that is because the loss of light caused by Venus' phases compensates for the increase in apparent size caused by its varying distance from Earth. Objectors to heliocentrism noted that terrestrial bodies naturally tend to come to rest as near as possible to the center of the earth. Further barring the opportunity to fall closer the center, terrestrial bodies tend not to move unless forced by an outside object, or transformed to a different element by heat or moisture.
Atmospheric explanations for many phenomena were preferred because the Eudoxan–Aristotelian model based on perfectly concentric spheres was not intended to explain changes in the brightness of the planets due to a change in distance. Eventually, perfectly concentric spheres were abandoned as it was impossible to develop a sufficiently accurate model under that ideal. However, while providing for similar explanations, the later deferent and epicycle model was flexible enough to accommodate observations for many centuries.
Although the basic tenets of Greek geocentrism were established by the time of Aristotle, the details of his system did not become standard. The Ptolemaic system, developed by the Hellenistic astronomer Claudius Ptolemaeus in the 2nd century AD finally standardised geocentrism. His main astronomical work, the Almagest, was the culmination of centuries of work by Hellenic, Hellenistic and Babylonian astronomers. For over a millennium European and Islamic astronomers assumed it was the correct cosmological model. Because of its influence, people sometimes wrongly think the Ptolemaic system is identical with the geocentric model.
Ptolemy argued that the Earth was in the center of the universe, from the simple observation that half the stars were above the horizon and half were below the horizon at any time (stars on rotating stellar sphere), and the assumption that the stars were all at some modest distance from the center of the universe. If the Earth was substantially displaced from the center, this division into visible and invisible stars would not be equal.
To summarize, Ptolemy devised a system that was compatible with Aristotelian philosophy and managed to track actual observations and predict future movement mostly to within the limits of the next 1000 years of observations.
The geocentric model was eventually replaced by the heliocentric model. The earliest heliocentric model, Copernican heliocentrism, could remove Ptolemy's epicycles because the retrograde motion could be seen to be the result of the combination of Earth and planet movement and speeds. Copernicus felt strongly that equants were a violation of Aristotelian purity, and proved that replacement of the equant with a pair of new epicycles was entirely equivalent. Astronomers often continued using the equants instead of the epicycles because the former was easier to calculate, and gave the same result.
It has been determined, in fact, that the Copernican, Ptolemaic and even the Tychonic models provided identical results to identical inputs. They are computationally equivalent. It wasn't until Kepler demonstrated a physical observation that could show that the physical sun is directly involved in determining an orbit that a new model was required.
Ptolemy did not invent or work out this order, which aligns with the ancient Seven Heavens religious cosmology common to the major Eurasian religious traditions. It also follows the decreasing orbital periods of the moon, sun, planets and stars.
Religious and contemporary adherence to geocentrism
The Ptolemaic model of the solar system held sway into the early modern age; from the late 16th century onward it was gradually replaced as the consensus description by the heliocentric model. Geocentrism as a separate religious belief, however, never completely died out. In the United States between 1870 and 1920, for example, various members of the Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod published articles disparaging Copernican astronomy, and geocentrism was widely taught within the synod during that period. However, in the 1902 Theological Quarterly, A. L. Graebner claimed that the synod had no doctrinal position on geocentrism, heliocentrism, or any scientific model, unless it were to contradict Scripture. He stated that any possible declarations of geocentrists within the synod did not set the position of the church body as a whole.
Articles arguing that geocentrism was the biblical perspective appeared in some early creation science newsletters associated with the Creation Research Society pointing to some passages in the Bible, which, when taken literally, indicate that the daily apparent motions of the Sun and the Moon are due to their actual motions around the Earth rather than due to the rotation of the Earth about its axis for example, Joshua 10:12 where the Sun and Moon are said to stop in the sky, and Psalms 93:1 where the world is described as immobile. Contemporary advocates for such religious beliefs include Robert Sungenis (president of Bellarmine Theological Forum and author of the 2006 book Galileo Was Wrong). These people subscribe to the view that a plain reading of the Bible contains an accurate account of the manner in which the universe was created and requires a geocentric worldview. Most contemporary creationist organizations reject such perspectives.
After all, Copernicanism was the first major victory of science over religion, so it's inevitable that some folks would think that everything that's wrong with the world began there. (Steven Dutch of the University of Wisconsin–Madison)
Morris Berman quotes survey results that show currently some 20% of the U.S. population believe that the sun goes around the Earth (geocentricism) rather than the Earth goes around the sun (heliocentricism), while a further 9% claimed not to know. Polls conducted by Gallup in the 1990s found that 16% of Germans, 18% of Americans and 19% of Britons hold that the Sun revolves around the Earth. A study conducted in 2005 by Jon D. Miller of Northwestern University, an expert in the public understanding of science and technology, found that about 20%, or one in five, of American adults believe that the Sun orbits the Earth. According to 2011 VTSIOM poll, 32% of Russians believe that the Sun orbits the Earth.
Some Orthodox Jewish leaders, particularly the Lubavitcher Rebbe, maintain a geocentric model of the universe based on the aforementioned Biblical verses and an interpretation of Maimonides to the effect that he ruled that the earth is orbited by the sun. The Lubavitcher Rebbe also explained that geocentrism is defensible based on the theory of Relativity, which establishes that "when two bodies in space are in motion relative to one another, ... science declares with absolute certainty that from the scientific point of view both possibilities are equally valid, namely that the earth revolves around the sun, or the sun revolves around the earth."
There is some evidence that geocentrist beliefs are becoming increasingly common among Orthodox Jews.
5.“The term "firmament" (רקיע- rāqîa') denotes the atmosphere between the heavenly realm and the earth (Gen. 1:6–7, 20) where the celestial bodies move (Gen. 1:14–17). It can also be used as a synonym for "heaven" (Gen. 1:8; Ps. 19:2). This "firmament is part of the heavenly structure whether it is the equivalent of "heaven/sky" or is what separates it from the earth. […] The ancient Israelites also used more descriptive terms for how God created the celestial realm, and based on the collection of these more specific and illustrative terms, I would propose that they had two basic ideas of the composition of the heavenly realm. First is the idea that the heavenly realm was imagined as a vast cosmic canopy. The verb used to describe metaphorically how God stretched out this canopy over earth is הטנ (nātāh) "stretch out," or "spread." "I made the earth, and created humankind upon it; it was my hands that stretched out the heavens, and I commanded all their host (Isa. 45:12)." In the Bible this verb is used to describe the stretching out (pitching) of a tent. Since the texts that mention the stretching out of the sky are typically drawing on creation imagery, it seems that the figure intends to suggest that the heavens are Yahweh's cosmic tent. One can imagine ancient Israelites gazing up to the stars and comparing the canopy of the sky to the roofs of the tents under which they lived. In fact, if one were to look up at the ceiling of a dark tent with small holes in the roof during the daytime, the roof, with the sunlight shining through the holes, would look very much like the night sky with all its stars. The second image of the material composition of the heavenly realm involves a firm substance. The term רקיע (răqîa'), typically translated "firmament," indicates the expanse above the earth. The root רקע means "stamp out" or "forge." The idea of a solid, forged surface fits well with Ezekiel 1 where God's throne rests upon the רקיע (răqîa'). According to Genesis 1, the רקיע(rāqîa') is the sphere of the celestial bodies (Gen. 1:6–8, 14–17; cf. ben Sira 43:8). It may be that some imagined the עיקר to be a firm substance on which the celestial bodies rode during their daily journeys across the sky.”
7. What is described in Genesis 1:1 to 2:3 was the commonly accepted structure of the universe from at least late in the second millennium BCE to the fourth or third century BCE. It represents a coherent model for the experiences of the people of Mesopotamia through that period. It reflects a world-view that made sense of water coming from the sky and the ground as well as the regular apparent movements of the stars, sun, moon, and planets. There is a clear understanding of the restrictions on breeding between different species of animals and of the way in which human beings had gained control over what were, by then, domestic animals. There is also recognition of the ability of humans to change the environment in which they lived. This same understanding occurred also in the great creation stories of Mesopotamia; these stories formed the basis for the Jewish theological reflections of the Hebrew Scriptures concerning the creation of the world. The Jewish priests and theologians who constructed the narrative took accepted ideas about the structure of the world and reflected theologically on them in the light of their experience and faith. There was never any clash between Jewish and Babylonian people about the structure of the world, but only about who was responsible for it and its ultimate theological meaning. The envisaged structure is simple: Earth was seen as being situated in the middle of a great volume of water, with water both above and below Earth. A great dome was thought to be set above Earth (like an inverted glass bowl), maintaining the water above Earth in its place. Earth was pictured as resting on foundations that go down into the deep. These foundations secured the stability of the land as something that is not floating on the water and so could not be tossed about by wind and wave. The waters surrounding Earth were thought to have been gathered together in their place. The stars, sun, moon, and planets moved in their allotted paths across the great dome above Earth, with their movements defining the months, seasons, and year. Wikipedia
“They deliberately lie about ancient wisdom and knowledge as though it was ridiculous. They try to ridicule the old wisdom and the old knowledge as though it were all false and they're the only ones that really know, they've only found it out lately and they are revealing these marvellous truths to you for the first time! When actually man has forgotten more truth than they ever knew, and more things about creation and the way things operate and astrology and all the rest! Modern man is not as smart as he thinks he is.
"And God said, let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters." What waters were they? At that time, the only waters we've heard about, the whole face of the earth was covered with water. He said, let there be a space between the waters and let it divide the waters from the waters!
Here we obviously have the sun and the moon and the stars, and where do we find them? In the firmament of heaven! Between the waters! Sun, moon and stars, obviously above the waters on the earth, and apparently below the waters somewhere above!
Where are the sun, moon and stars, in the firmament! And where is this firmament? Between the waters. The waters below, obviously on the earth, and the waters above! If the Bible is true, there's water out there somewhere beyond the stars!
The stars are not that far away!
When they (scientists) get beyond man's little limit here of the solar system, they’ve gone too far.
Even the earliest men mapped charts of the stars thousands of years ago, and some of them have been in existence for we know hundreds of years and far before that, because there were astrologers even in Daniel’s day (600 BC) and before that. They knew all about the stars, probably even more about stars than we do today!
There’s only 6,000 years of history since creation, right? It says that on the fourth day He made the stars also, so when did he make them, 6,000 years ago. Do you think you could see them then? Well, we know by history that they've been for quite awhile before this, in fact, several thousand years!
It’s my personal conviction that the stars were visible I would say at least that day, "lights in the heavens", you must have been able to see them if they were lights. So if they saw them that same day, on the fourth day, they certainly couldn't have been more than twenty four hours away. Two-thirds of a billion in an hour? Well, let's say at least by the tenth hour of the day they could see them, so you've got about maybe six billion miles away. Ten times your 600-and-some million is six billion. I’ll confess six billion miles is quite a little ways!
They undoubtedly have to be less than one light day away, so they're only a few light hours away at the very most!--not billions and trillions of light years.
So your beautiful constellations and stars and galaxies and all the rest that you can see out there through the telescopes, you can even see with the naked eye 4,000 of them and have been ever since creation, according to all the star charts and everything they've had since thousands of years ago, they've never changed! So I’m convinced by the time some of those first ones were made by the first astrologers, they hadn't changed a bit from the day of creation to their time!
To finish the story, not only are the stars not so far away, but there's something even further away than the stars! The water above the firmament!
So therefore if he created the stars and they were there on that fourth day of creation, and within this firmament of space between here and the outer waters, obviously they couldn't be too far away--they certainly couldn't be light years away! They are very far and they are very high, "behold, the stars how high they are."
Stars are out there beyond, (the planets) but they're not that far beyond. They’re far out, but they're not that far out.
My personal conviction is I don't think they're even that far away! I don't think they're very much beyond the solar system itself.
Just remember, whenever it comes to contradicting God's word in any way, shape or form, I don't care how much they pretend to prove it. It just isn’t so! So there you are! The stars have been here ever since God made them on the fourth day, and that's only 6,000 years ago, so they couldn't be as far away as they say. So I believe the bible.” Excerpts from Astronomical Fakery 1981 by D.B.Berg
Famous Pastor Just Responded To Syrian Chaos With Chilling 6 Word Message Everyone Needs To See
"It's not going to go away..."
Melody Dareing November 25, 2015 at 12:08pm
One well known pastor is preaching that the changes in the global situation, from terrorism to new world alliances, are indicators that these are the last days before the return of Jesus Christ.
Pastor Greg Laurie, 62, of Harvest Christian Fellowship in California said current news events are following the plan laid out in Bible prophecy. He wrapped up a Nov. 19 sermon with this conclusive statement.
“We’re living in the last days,” Laurie said.
Laurie pointed his congregation to two specific things: the rise of terrorism and the alliance between Russia and Iran. He said global terrorism is as “stronger that it has ever been.”
“I think it’s pretty obvious to almost anyone that we are living in the last days,” Laurie said in a Nov. 19 sermon. “There’s all kinds of things reminding us that Christ is coming back again.”
Former Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn.
Former Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., who is under fire for saying what Christians say – that people need Jesus – is getting some help from prominent leaders of the faith.
Bachmann recently raised hackles after she encouraged evangelism of Jews following a trip to Israel.
“We recognize the shortness of the hour, and that’s why we as a remnant want to be faithful in these days and do what it is that the Holy Spirit is speaking to each one of us, to be faithful in the Kingdom and to help bring in as many as we can – even among the Jews – share Jesus Christ with everyone that we possibly can because, again, He’s coming soon.”
Rabbi Jonathan Cahn of The Jerusalem Center/Beth Israel, author of “The Harbinger” and “The Mystery of the Shemitah,” told WND that Bachmann “simply said what every Bible says, that the gospel has to be spread to everyone.”
Cahn, a Messianic Jew and the subject of the new documentary “The Harbinger Man,” argues Christianity grew out of Judaism and observes the first Christians were Jews. He says Christians have an obligation to act like those first Jewish believers in Jesus Christ.
“To have the way of salvation and not to spread it with those who don’t have it, would be immoral,” he said. “To share it with others is an act of love. And it was the Jewish people who first spread that message of salvation with the world.”
After Bachmann’s comments recently, one Jewish leader who condemned her, Rabbi Avi Shafran of Agudath Israel, claimed Bachmann’s statements would remind Jews “that missionizing is, unfortunately, alive and well, and that we must always be on the lookout for it.”
Rabbi Shumley Boteach, a past contributor to WND, said he wanted to “respectfully correct” Bachmann. Boteach told the Blaze, “She’s a very fine woman and a great friend of Israel, but when that support comes with these seemingly strings attached – that we believe that Jews should embrace Christianity – it’s a bit of a contradiction.”
“We Jews are not going to become Christian,” he said.
But Michael Brown, a Messianic Jew who has debated Rabbi Boteach in the past over the Jewish identity of Jesus Christ, disagreed.
"I appreciate what Rabbi Shmuley is saying in calling for Jews to be loyal Jews within Judaism," Brown told WND. "The solution to this tension is simple: Jews need to embrace 'The Real Kosher Jesus!' In other words, Jews need to discover that Yeshua is their Messiah, but that doesn't mean they should convert to Christianity. It means that they embrace Yeshua as Jews and continue to live as Jews, except now in the light of the new and better covenant that God has made with the Jewish people through the Messiah."
Brown wrote "The Real Kosher Jesus" as a direct response to Rabbi Boteach, arguing that faith in Jesus Christ is perfectly compatible with Judaism. Brown also defended Bachmann, insisting she was simply defending the gospel.
"Of course, Michele Bachmann is saying nothing new when she encourages Christians to share their faith with the Jewish people," he said. "Paul himself said that the gospel is to the Jew first, and if Jesus is not the Jewish Messiah, then He is not the Savior of the world. That's New Testament 101."
However, Brown also said Christians should support Israel regardless of whether Jews accept Jesus Christ as their Messiah.
"Christian love for Israel is not dependent on Israel's performance," he said. "It is love for the sake of love and solidarity for the sake of solidarity."
Joel Richardson, author of "When a Jew Rules the World: What the Bible Really Says About Israel in the Plan of God," charged Boteach with being "out of line and actually quite hypocritical."
"Much of Mr. Boteach's work, while not overly harsh, has been somewhat polemical toward Christianity," Richardson told WND. "Much of his book, 'Judaism for Everyone' for example, is devoted to casting modern rabbinical Judaism as superior to Christianity. If it is fine for Mr. Boteach to essentially call Christians to Judaism, then it is most certainly acceptable for Christians to invite all people – especially Jews – to faith in Jesus, or more properly Yeshua."
Richardson said telling Christians not to share the gospel is asking them to break Jesus' commandments.
"We are commanded to share the gospel," Richardson said. "Simply stated, to demand that Christians do not invite Jews to become followers of Yeshua is to ask us to disobey our Master and violate our faith. It is no secret that we Christians are called to extend the invitation to follow Yeshua the Messiah to everyone."
However, Richardson took care to explain Jews are certainly free to reject the invitation and expressed condemnation of any program of forced conversion. He also urged Christians to remember the history of Christian persecutions against Jews.
"Because of the long history of Christians persecuting Jews and seeking to force them to become Christians, such calls should be done with the greatest measure of sensitivity," he observed. "While most Christians are rather ignorant concerning the long and brutal history of Christian replacement theologians' interaction with the Jewish community, the Jewish community is most often quite familiar with the history of great abuse. In my most recent book, 'When a Jew Rules the World,' I devote two chapters to this subject. I would encourage every Christian to study this painful part of our history."
Some of the Jewish criticism of Bachmann reflects a mistrust of conservative Christians. In response to Bachmann’s comments, Greg Rosenbaum, chairman of the National Jewish Democratic Council, stated: "I've always said, you've got evangelical Republicans supporting Israel because they are building a stairway to heaven on the backs of the Jews in Israel. We don't get to go with them unless – as Michele Bachmann said over the weekend – all of the Israeli Jews convert to Christianity, as soon as possible."
The Jewish Federations of North America disavowed Rosenbaum's remarks.
Pastor Mark Biltz of El Shaddai Ministries said the burden is on Christians to recognize the Jewish roots of their faith.
"Yeshua was born Jewish, from the tribe of Judah, lived a Jewish life, died as a Jew, even with the sign written by Pilate over him, stating he was the King of the Jews," he said.
"He resurrected and ascended as a Jew. He told his disciples that he would come back just as he left. He left as a Jew so he will come back as a Jew.
"How are Jews to see the 'Good News' as good news when Christians teach the Torah is done away with, the Sabbath has changed, the Feast days are ended with pagan holidays replacing them? That's supposed to be the 'Good News'?"
Biltz explained his desire is for "all Jews to become passionate for the Torah of the God of Israel as well as passionate for the Land of Israel that God gave them."
However, he said Christians should also renounce "replacement theology" and "pray the Jewish people will fulfill their role in being a light to the nations as God desired."
Biltz said his ministry has no desire to convert Jews to Christianity or Christians to Judaism and believes "the God of Israel will accomplish His purposes in His time."
However, Richardson maintains Christians can never cease sharing the gospel with everyone, including Jews. And he told WND the debate over evangelism to Jews often ignores a critically important group of Jews – those who already accept Jesus as Messiah.
"In the land of Israel today, there are now over 20,000 Messianic Jewish believers who embrace Yeshua as Messiah, while maintaining their identity as Jews within Judaism," Richardson stated. "It is a dynamic movement whose numbers are growing every day. Unfortunately, these Jewish believers are often treated harshly by other non-Messianic Jews."
The Blaze reported Boteach "said it is as though Bachmann is saying that Jews deserve a national identity, but that they do not deserve a religious identity with Judaism."
Richardson called that "absurd."
"The assertions that embracing Yeshua as Messiah make someone less Jewish contribute to the harsh treatment of this minority group especially within the land of Israel," Richardson charged. "I would appeal that Boteach recant his comments and apologize to Michele Bachmann."
TOP CHRISTIAN VOICE UNCORKS ON LIARS IN MEDIA, POLITICS
Ravi Zacharias: 'They're trading in lives for their power'
Published: November 23, 2015
Dr. Ravi Zacharias is one of Christianity’s foremost apologists. His ministry, Ravi Zacharias International Ministries, is based in Norcross, Georgia.
Is the West being slow-cooked by a resurgence of Islamic fervor across the globe, responding to individual attacks by separate groups but refusing to engage in the wider battle?
One of Christianity’s most widely respected thinkers and erudite apologists says that is exactly the case.
In an op-ed titled “Is Paris Burning,” Ravi Zacharias says Europe, America and the entire free world are being lied to by their politicians and most of their media, who refuse to ask the appropriate questions and brand those who dare to do so with nasty labels.
The Paris attacks targeted every-day people having fun – at restaurants, pubs, a soccer stadium and a concert hall.
Zacharias, who is speaking in Egypt this week, was in England the night of the Paris massacre.
The newspapers the next day described the horrific attacks that killed 129 and injured more than 350 with words like “carnage,” “massacre,” “assassination,” “murder,” “blood,” “death,” “screams,” “terror” and so on.
“Television programming was pre-empted and viewers were cautioned that some of the scenes of the slaughter were graphic. It was real,” Zacharias wrote. “A few hours later, names and pictures of the dead were shown. It was like we had heard this before. But it was new and real: the victims’ lives cut short in the peak of their careers. Children who weren’t going to come home.”
He said there is a sense that we are at war, but not officially and not seriously enough to name the enemy.
“War in small increments can be deadlier than large scale war because it doesn’t just desensitize the killers; it desensitizes all of humanity.
“Killers who do not represent a country and whose belief is debated ad nauseam as to whether it is a version or a perversion are truly sinister and are the cancerous cells of our time,” he continued. “They are protected by having no roots either in country or belief. The West is being taken down in small portions till one day the lie of the murderers being protected by smooth-talking power brokers with a bodyguard of lies will be seen for the terrifying belief that it is. No contrary view will be allowed then.”
Until that happens, Zacharias says deception will continue to rule the day.
“For now, the layers of distortion cover the graves of the murdered. The whole world has become a courtroom where clever lawyers make truth unattainable,” he wrote. “Whether it be 9/11 or the carnage at the Boston Marathon or blown-up planes or Paris, we will not find answers because to ask the question is either to receive a lie from some politicians or many in the media, or to invoke the wrath of hate-filled killers.”
Those who expose the truth about Islam do so at great risk to their personal safety. Many, such as Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer, also get lampooned in the media and even barred from entering once-free countries like Britain.
“So we ask,” says Zacharias, “what is the belief behind all this that kills with such callousness? We do not get any answers. We are told by some that it’s a religion of peace. Others call it a political theory at its core covered with the garb of religion to give it maximum protection as it invokes the laws of blasphemy.”
What is the answer?
“We had dare not unpack the truth. In one sense, strangely, one feels almost pity for these murderers,” he said. “The possessor of hate loses the essence of life much more than the victim does. Living with a heart so deceived breeds a decimating misery within and spreads the venom globally. There must be scores of young men within the belief who do not wish to inflict such pain but who now live with the pall of suspicion over them. Such is the contagion of a poisoned soul.”
In fact, those who try to break with Islam invite horrific consequences of their own. A man in Britain who converted a decade about from Islam to Christianity lives in constant fear of attacks. The father of six, Nissar Hussain, was brutally beaten outside his home last Tuesday by two hooded Muslims. He was dealt a broken arm, a broken knee cap and a concussion.
“This is the new Britain. This is the path Britain has chosen,” Geller, author of “Stop the Islamization of America,” wrote at her blog. “The U.K. Home Office banned me from the country for standing up against this Muslim brutality and thuggery — and they’ve ruthlessly moved against everyone who stands up against it. So now the Muslim thugs and jihad killers have the run of the place. ”
Clare Lopez, vice president for research and analysis for the Center for Security Policy, says she holds America’s leaders responsible for the failure to recognize Islam for what it is. There has always been a disconnect, she said.
“Our top leadership has never understood what Islam really is and implemented policies they thought were going to empower ‘democratic forces’ against dictators – never realizing the reason those dictators were able to hold things together was precisely because they suppressed jihad, and that if they let up the pressure or if genuinely free elections were held, the jihadis would win – or at least surge back up to cause mayhem again,” Lopez told WND.
Author and filmmaker G.M. Davis takes up the crucial question in his new book, “House of War: Islam’s Jihad Against the World.” In it, he not only asks but answers the forbidden question, concluding that “the origin of Islamic violence is Islam itself.”
Davis quotes Hiskett, who makes the following observation about multicultural Britain which could just as easily be applied to America:
“Britain has failed because the multiculturalists have failed to understand the nature of Islam. What they offer is a gallimaufry of humanist ideas, and some selective comparative religion, shorn of all ‘irrational’ elements, for which an unhallowed relativism, not a passionate accession of faith and a blinding encounter with divinity, is the premise. This is defended as ‘an ability to cope with the uncertainty posed by pluralism.’ In fact, it is an attempt to extinguish the sacerdotal. It may seem admirable in the fashionable context of liberal doubt. But what he multiculturalists forget – or have never understood – is that the equation is altogether one-sided. For the Islamic side there is neither doubt nor pluralism, and only very limited tolerance. … All multiculturalism does is to enable the Muslims to run rings around their trusting multiculturalist and interfaith well wishers, in the business of bending the British education system to their will.”
While countries like Britain, Germany, Sweden and Belgium appear to have made their choices of what path to follow, the quest for answers still haunts, says Zacharias.
“In one Middle Eastern country, an awful thing happened. Two young Muslims turned atheists were on a program. They argued for the reality that blood had been spilled across the centuries and that there was no denying that from its earliest days to the present, this was the same blood-letting in the name of the belief as originally given and carried out. Then one of them asked the cleric a question that was as pointed as could be. It was a powerful question with an irrefutable fact within the question. The question laid bare a reality that was deemed blasphemous. The next day that man and his family were murdered, just for asking a fact-laden question that was unanswerable without conceding the truth. For that, he and his family paid with their lives.
“That’s the depravity of our age. It is death to ask the pointed question because the answer, if true, betrays the real truth. The masquerade is on and it is deadly. We watch hundreds die. We hear speeches full of distortions; we tolerate deceit and even reward it. Some in power and in the public eye whitewash the reality while the blood of the murdered cries out from the ground. Our children and grandchildren will inherit the whirlwind because our media pundits and misguided speech-makers have sown to the wind by trading in lives for their power.”
Zacharias says there is hope even in the midst of the reigning lie.
“The lie has a shelf life. The truth abides forever,” he said. “God can even conquer through our perversion.”
Lord's Prayer ad banned from UK cinema chains by Digital Cinema Media for fear of causing offence
By Melissa Clarke, wires
Updated about 11 hours ago
Sun 22 Nov 2015, 9:59pm
YOUTUBE: The ad featuring the Lord's Prayer was banned from cinemas in Britain.
A pre-Christmas advert promoting prayer has been banned from Britain's biggest cinema chains for fear of causing offence, to the bewilderment of the Church of England.
The 56-second advertisement features believers from various walks of life — including Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, a weightlifter, a farmer, a couple getting married, refugees and a gospel choir — saying the Lord's Prayer.
The Church of England is the state church in England and the ad was cleared by the British Board of Film Classification and the Cinema Advertising Authority.
However, the Digital Cinema Media (DCM) agency — which handles adverts for Odeon, Cineworld and Vue cinemas — has refused to show it.
The church hoped the advert would be played before screenings of blockbuster Star Wars: The Force Awakens from December 18.
"I find it extraordinary that cinemas rule that it is inappropriate for an advert on prayer to be shown in the week before Christmas when we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ," Archbishop Welby, the leader of the world's Anglicans and the spiritual head of the church, told The Mail on Sunday newspaper.
"Billions of people across the world pray this prayer on a daily basis.
"I think they would be astonished and deeply saddened by this decision, especially in the light of the terrorist attack in Paris where many people have found comfort and solace in prayer.
"This advert is about as 'offensive' as a carol service on Christmas Day."
DCM said it had a policy of "not accepting political or religious advertising content for use in its cinemas".
"Some advertisements — unintentionally or otherwise — could cause offence to those of differing political persuasions, as well as to those of differing faiths and indeed of no faith," it said.
"In this regard, DCM treats all political or religious beliefs equally."
Richard Dawkins backs church ad
The Church's communications director, Reverend Arun Arora, said the "bewildering" decision raised questions about freedom of speech in Britain.
"I think that's an astonishing decision and one that we were really bewildered by," he said.
"In one way, the decision of the cinemas is just plain silly, but the fact that they have insisted upon it makes it rather chilling in terms of limiting free speech."
He said people should be allowed to "make up their own minds as to whether they are upset or offended by it".
The Church also received unexpected support from prominent atheist and biologist Richard Dawkins, who told The Guardian he "strongly objected to suppressing ads on the grounds that they might 'offend' people".
"If anybody is 'offended' by something so trivial as a prayer, they deserve to be offended," he said.
THE DAILY BEAST
Will Jihadis Hijack the Vatican’s Jubilee Year?
Rome is bracing for the opening of its celebration year amid worries that 25 million Catholic pilgrims will fall prey to terrorists.
11.22.1512:01 AM ET
ROME — Sometimes it’s better to just stay silent rather than call attention to obvious flaws. That could certainly be considered the case when it comes to Rome’s readiness—or seeming lack thereof—ahead of the Vatican’s Holy Jubilee Year of Mercy that kicks off Dec. 8 with the opening of the holy year doors of St. Peter’s Basilica.
Not only is the city a veritable construction site with most Jubilee projects barely underway or slated for completion into the new year, but security forces admit there is no way they can possibly protect pilgrims from becoming prey for terrorists.
The previous Jubilee, under Pope John Paul II in 2000, coincided with the millennium celebrations, and the city took more than seven years to prepare. The church’s event this year follows one of the worst terrorist attacks in Europe, and the city has less than a month to somehow beef up its security enough to detect and deter any threat of attack. The gathering is expected to draw 25 million Catholic pilgrims over 12 months, during which they will have thrice-weekly opportunities to hear Pope Francis in St. Peter’s Square, which has been described as something like rounding up sheep for a cull.
Since the Paris attacks, many hotels and tour groups have reported cancellations.
“We are preparing for a Jubilee in the time of ISIS,” Italy’s security czar, Franco Gabrielli, who has been given the daunting task of managing security for the event in Rome in the absence of a mayor, said at a press conference laying out the 128-page dossier of plans Friday. “We even have 2,000 extra men dedicated to security.”
Those 2,000 won’t be on duty all at once—“unless there is an event”—and include counterterrorism officials, undercover cops, and snipers who will be atop Rome’s churches during Jubilee-related events. Gabrielli says most of the city of Rome will also be a “no-fly-zone” zone for the entire year, blocking major air traffic from the city’s main airports along with drones and ultra-lite aircraft—the latter two categories, he says, are subject to being shot down if they are spotted.
He also says there will be “special patrols in the periphery of the city based on demographic concerns,” which is a not-so-subtle way of saying they are paying attention to areas where ethnic groups tend to live. Those areas include the city’s refugee centers, mosques, and squat houses. And there will be extra checks at airports and ports, though not if it interferes with the Schengen rules under which Europeans can travel unhindered, he says, making it unclear what extra checks will be in place.
But for all the security that is being touted, there’s much concern that it just won’t be enough. At the press conference Friday, the Jubilee security panel had to defend its readiness to such an extent that it sounded like they were trying to convince themselves, not the press, they are ready. After warning against reporting rumors and false alarms without “an extra check for validity,” they addressed questions like whether or not the Rome cops’ bulletproof vests are too old to be effective. (Apparently they are good for a full 10 years.) They were also held to the fire on whether or not the type of surveillance it would take to thwart an attack ought to already be in place by now to be effective and whether they had anyone under surveillance at the moment, after Italy’s Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni told RAI3 news earlier that authorities are actively searching for five jihadis whose names were given to them by the FBI. The Jubilee security team seemed caught unaware of the news.
One of the reasons that the country lags behind is that Italy, along with many other European nations, has had to tighten its budget over the last several years. At Rome’s Fiumicino airport, there are 40 percent fewer security personnel than there were for the last Jubilee, said Alessandro Di Battista, a member of parliament for the FiveStar movement, adding that “many of them aren’t even able to hit a moving target.”
It’s little wonder that the FBI warned Italian authorities (and Americans) last week that St. Peter’s Square is a high-priority terrorism target “to be avoided,” along with the Duomo and La Scala opera house in Milan. In an email alert sent to all U.S. citizens in Italy, the U.S. embassy in Rome warned of potential attacks on those popular sites along with “general venues such as churches, synagogues, restaurants, theatres, and hotels in both cities are possible targets as well.
“Terrorist groups may possibly utilize similar methods used in the recent Paris attacks,” the warning read. “The Italian authorities are aware of these threats.”
Not exactly a thumbs-up review for travel to Italy.
What makes matters worse is a palpable sense of paranoia around the country that starts at the top. A La Stampa correspondent told The Daily Beat that on the island of Sicily, a woman was hauled into the police station for playing Arabic music loud in her car. Muslim-run businesses have reported a drop in business and racist graffiti on the walls.
On Thursday, Gabrielli stopped short of a blatant accusation when he asked the Islamic community in Italy to “take a position” on this month’s terrorist attacks. “It’s absurd to say that all Muslims are terrorists,” he said on camera to an Italian journalist. “But it is undeniable that all terrorists come from that context.” When pressed by the reporter whether all Muslims should be under surveillance, he first said Italy just didn’t have the manpower for that, before tempering his comments. “That would be discriminatory,” he said smiling slyly. “It can’t be done.”
Since the Paris attacks last week, there have been dozens of false alarms, including eight emergency calls in Rome on Thursday alone, which included the discovery of left baggage at Fiumicino, a forgotten suitcase at a bar near the Vatican, and no less than five suspect packages in the city’s subways, which caused police to stop the entire system four different times. On Friday, more abandoned packages were found in the city’s underground, prompting some to joke about why no one has noticed all the garbage before. A mentally ill man apparently waved a rifle at Rome’s San Giovanni hospital, which caused the U.S. embassy to send out another alert with the subject, “Emergency Message for U.S. Citizens: Armed Individual in Central Rome,” which is not exactly the kind of thing one likes to see in their inbox.
So nervous are the citizens that many are calling on the Vatican to cancel the Jubilee entirely. After all, the Vatican has been in the terrorists’ sights for quite some time. As The Daily Beast reported in October 2014, the ISIS propaganda magazine Dabiq put a picture of the black jihadi flag flying over St. Peter’s Square on its cover under the headline “The Failed Crusade.” “We will conquer your Rome, break your crosses, and enslave your women, by the permission of Allah, the Exalted. If we do not reach that time, then our children and grandchildren will reach it, and they will sell your sons as slaves at the slave market,” according to the Dabiq article accompanying the cover photos. “Every Muslim should get out of his house, find a crusader and kill him… And the Islamic State will remain until its banner flies over Rome.”
Making matters even more delicate, last week Vatican Secretary of State Pietro Parolin said the Holy See supports military action against ISIS. “The defense of the common good requires that an unjust aggressor be rendered unable to cause harm,” Parolin said, quoting an old church teaching, and calling to mind the Crusades for some. “For this reason, those who legitimately hold authority also have the right to use arms to repel aggressors against the civil community entrusted to their responsibility.”
For Francis, who long ago sold off the papal armored cars (and who refuses to wear a bulletproof vest because, as his spokesman said recently, what’s the point when he rides in an open-top vehicle), the show must go on. “Please, no security doors on the church,” he said at his general audience Wednesday, which had noticeably fewer faithful in the square and noticeably tighter security. “The church must be open.”
Other Vatican officials have said that a Jubilee is just what the world needs right now to give people hope. “Canceling the Jubilee would be totally mistaken,” said Italian Cardinal Angelo Bagnasco. “There absolutely must not be panic among the people, who must regard Rome, the pilgrimage to the Holy Door, with the usual serenity.”
Good luck with that.
In the meantime, the pontiff is planning to visit Kenya, Uganda, and the Central African Republic on an increasingly risky five-day trip that starts Nov. 25. After that, he returns to Rome to kick off the Jubilee, which, quite hopefully, goes off without a bang.
IT'S OFFICIAL: 'HOMOPHOBIA' NOW A MENTAL DISORDER!
'Snapping' author David Kupelian blasts new effort by 'loony left' to silence conservatives
By Paul Bremmer
Published: November 22,2015
If you think there might be something wrong with homosexuality, you most likely have a mental disorder, according to a recent study by a team of Italian researchers.
Discussing the study, lead researcher Emmanuele A. Jannini, M.D., stated: “After discussing for centuries if homosexuality is to be considered a disease, for the first time we demonstrated that the real disease to be cured is homophobia, associated with potentially severe psychopathologies.”
That’s right. The research team specifically found that “psychoticism,” “immature defense mechanisms” and a “fearful attachment style” were associated with a greater “homophobic” attitude in individuals.
Award-winning journalist and author David Kupelian was not surprised by this new study, because he predicted exactly such developments in his latest book.
“In ‘The Snapping of the American Mind,’ I predicted that the current obsession of the loony left – which dominates the social sciences – with pathologizing conservatives and Christians as ‘disordered’ would only accelerate,” Kupelian said. “A generation ago, people who engaged in homosexual acts were considered ‘disordered’ by the psychiatric and psychological professions. Today, simply recognizing homosexuality as disordered makes you disordered!”
Kupelian noted the homosexual activist movement pressured the American Psychiatric Association in the 1970s to remove homosexuality from its official list of disorders. More recently, in 2012, the APA removed “gender identity disorder” from its manual of mental disorders. Gender identity disorder had been the common diagnosis for transgender people.
Meanwhile, those who oppose same-sex marriage or homosexuality in general are often labeled “homophobic,” which implies the person has an anxiety disorder (a phobia), notes Kupelian. Other pathologizing labels include “biphobia” for those who don’t like to be around bisexuals and “transphobia” for those who don’t like to be around transgender people.
Even worse, reveals Kupelian, some researchers have endeavored to prove conservatives’ brains are structured differently. A 2010 study in the United Kingdom reported conservatives have brains with larger amygdalas, the part of the brain associated with fear, anxiety, and emotion. In 2012, a University of Arkansas professor released a study linking conservative views to low brainpower, writing, “[W]hen under time pressure or otherwise cognitively impaired, people are more likely to express conservative views.”
However, Kupelian revealed that contrary to what liberal social scientists might prefer, solid research has shown that those on the political left are far more likely to suffer from mental illness than those on the right. A 2007 Gallup survey found Republicans reported much better mental health than either Democrats or Independents.
Similarly, a 2013 survey commissioned by BuzzFeed found Democrats were more likely than Republicans to suffer from a whole host of mental illnesses: ADD/ADHD, Asperger’s/autism, depression, anxiety, OCD, bipolar disorder, PTSD, schizophrenia, anorexia, and bulimia.
And yet, the Obama administration seems most concerned about protecting the rest of the country from conservatives, observes Kupelian. They may not have declared conservatives mentally ill, he notes, but the Department of Homeland Security released a report in 2009 warning of a rising domestic terrorist threat from “rightwing extremism.” Potential rightwing extremists, according to the report, included returning military veterans, people concerned about illegal immigration, constitutionalists, Second Amendment supporters and pro-lifers, among others.
Kupelian pointed out that the communists of the old Soviet Union also were fond of demonizing and de-legitimizing their ideological opponents– but the Soviets went further than anything seen in America so far.
“In the Soviet Union, far-left ideology and a powerful impulse to silence dissent led to ‘diagnosing’ the most normal, clear-thinking and courageous people – ‘dissidents’ like Natan Sharansky – and incarcerating them in mental hospitals,” Kupelian explained.
“We’re not there yet in the U.S., but just ask yourself this: How different is it for the crazy left to label conservatives and Christians ‘haters,’ ‘bigots’ and ‘extremists’ – even potential ‘domestic terrorists’ – as they routinely do today, and labeling the same people as mentally ill? That day may be closer than anybody thinks.”
New Right Wing Polish Government Removes EU Flags
by OLIVER LANE25 Nov 2015
Just weeks into taking power, the new Polish government is making itself felt in making small but heavily symbolic changes to the daily order of business. Having already torn up the previous government’s commitment to take thousands of migrants from the European Union (EU) as part of the continent-wide resettlement programme, Poland is now making tentative steps to remove visible signs of EU influence from public life.
Under the last government, flags displayed at government events including press conferences were equally split between the Polish national, and the European Union. It was all change at Tuesday’s press conference with new Prime Minister Beata Szydlo, who appeared at her podium with Polish flags only.
Asked about the change, Mrs. Szydlo said she was happy with Poland remaining inside the European Union and the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, but national matters called for the national flag.
In future government press briefings “will be held only with the most beautiful red and white Polish flags”, said Mrs. Szydlo.
The move has been called a ‘snub’ by Britain’s Financial Times and even prompted former Belgian prime minister and senior European Union parliamentarian Guy Verhofstadt to tweet “So you do not wish EU flags, but still want EU money?”.
Mrs. Szydlo’s Law and Justice party won a majority in last month’s general election, the first time any party has been able to govern without coalition partners since the end of communism.
The new foreign minister Witold Waszczykowski has quickly become one of the most vocal elected politicians in Europe on the matter of mass migration in the few days he has held his post. Speaking to the BBC, he slammed migrants for masquerading as refugees while in Europe, which he said they were not and in doing so were violating international law.
Mr. Waszczykowski also stood by the comments of a party colleague who said migrants brought diseases and parasites into Europe, when pressed by the BBC to condemn them. Citing his experience with Arab countries, Mr. Waszczykowski said: “Such a large, uncontrolled migration may cause problems for the life of Europe”.
“I spent years living in foreign countries, living in the Middle East. I was the ambassador to Iran.
“I know this region, I know the culture, I know what might happen with uncontrolled migration from regions where war has been going on for years”.
UN Tells Poland To Increase Access to Abortions For Children, End Traditional Family
Fromless restrictive and, in relation to adolescent girls, to reflect the right of the child to express her views and the best interests of the child.” It also commands Poland to “establish clear standards for a uniform and non-restrictive interpretation of the conditions for legal abortion and relevant procedures”.
In one ofean institutions and international organisations are made to serve a specific purpose.”
The UN also says that “gender stereotypes concerning the roles and responsibilities of women and men in the family and society persist” in the deeply Catholic nation, while another section tells Poland to introduce new hate crime laws to “define hate speech and other hate crimes motivated by racism, xenophobia and homophobia as specific punishable offences.”
The UN committee, which is notorious for its left-liberal views, previously urged the Holy See to change Church teaching on homosexuality, contraception and abortion. The Vatican responded that the committee has no power to demand such a change.
Stanisław Szwed, the Deputy Minister of Labour and Social Policy, said the Polish government will not change the country’s abortion law. The Law and Justice Party, who won last month’s parliamentary elections and formally took power this week, campaigned on protecting life and the family.
Turkish F-16s shoot down Russian fighter jet near Syria border
Published November 24, 2015FoxNews.com
Russian President Vladimir Putin said Tuesday that Turkey’s decision to shoot down a Russian warplane near Turkey's border with Syria is a "stab in the back" and it would have “significant consequences” for its relations with Turkey, as NATO called an emergency meeting over the incident.
Putin said the Russian Sukhoi-24 jet was shot by a missile from a Turkish jet over Syria about just over a half-mile away from the Turkish border, which he described as a "stab in the back by the terrorists' accomplices." Turkey said it warned the jet several times that it was in its airspace.
Putin was meeting with Jordanian King Abdullah II in Sochi. Prior to the meeting, The New York Times said Putin was "speaking slowly and clearly angry."
NATO called an emergency meeting in Brussels on Tuesday after the incident.
"The aim of this extraordinary North Atlantic Council meeting is for Turkey to inform allies about the downing of a Russian airplane," NATO's deputy spokesperson Carmen Romero told the Associated Press.
A spokesman for the U.S.-led coalition based out of Baghdad said the U.S. indeed heard Turkey on "open channels" issue 10 warnings to the Russian jet before the incident. Reports out of Russia also say a military helicopter was shot at in Syria, killing one serviceman. The helicopter was reportedly on a rescue mission.
Rebels said they fired at the two parachuting pilots as they descended, and that one had died. A rebel spokesman said they would consider releasing the body in exchange for prisoners held by Syria. The fate of the second pilot was not immediately known.
VIDEO: Raw footage of Russian jet being shot down
U.S. defense official said that two Turkish F-16s fired heat-seeking air-to-air missiles at the Russian aircraft.
“This will get complicated,” the official said.
Tuesday's incident is the first time since the 1950s that a Russian or Soviet military aircraft has been publicly acknowledged to have been shot down by a NATO country, according to Reuters.
President Obama, at a joint press conference with French President François Hollande, cautioned that information about the incident was still emerging and discouraged escalation. He added that Turkey had a "right to defend its territory and its airspace."
The president said the shootdown underscored an "ongoing problem" with Russia's military operations in Syria, where the Russians have been targeting groups near the Turkish border. The incident also shows a need to move forward quickly on a diplomatic resolution to the conflict in Syria, he said.
Russia said the Su-24 was downed by artillery fire, but Turkey claimed that its F-16s fired on the Russian plane after it ignored the warnings.
Putin warned that the incident would have "significant consequences" for its relations with Turkey and criticized Ankara for turning to NATO to discuss the incident instead of first explaining to Russia what happened.
A U.S. official confirmed to Fox News that the Russian Su-24 was downed north of the Syrian port city of Latakia.
The official told Fox News that the Su-24's two pilots parachuted and were last seen attempting to evade capture. Two Russian helicopters were airborne to attempt a rescue mission.
A video that was later released by Syrian rebels showed one of the pilots dead, while the fate of the other one is unclear.
Jahed Ahmad of the 10th Brigade in the Coast, a rebel group, told The Associated Press that the two Russian crew members tried to land in their parachutes in government-held areas after they ejected, but came under fire from members of his group.
He added that rebels shot one of the pilots, who landed dead on the ground on Tuesday.
The group released a video showing gunmen standing around a blond pilot whose face was bruised and appeared dead.
Ahmad said his group would consider exchanging the body of the pilot with prisoners held by the Syrian government.
"This is the body of a Russian member of the military who was killing Syrian people," he said. "We have the body and we will see what to do with it."
Video footage of the incident showed the Russian plane on fire before crashing on a hill.
Rami Abdurrahman, who heads the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the warplane crashed in the Turkmen Mountains region in the coastal province of Latakia. The region has been subjected to an offensive by Syrian government forces over the past several days under the cover of Russian airstrikes. The area is controlled by several insurgent groups, including Al Qaeda's branch in Syria, the Nusra Front, and the 2nd Coastal Division that consists of local Turkmen fighters.
A Turkish military statement said the plane entered Turkish airspace over the town of Yayladagi, in Hatay province. It said the plane was warned 10 times within the space of 5 minutes.
Russia denied that the plane ever crossed the Syrian border into Turkish skies.
"We are looking into the circumstances of the crash of the Russian jet," the country's Defense Ministry said in a statement. "The Ministry of Defense would like to stress that the plane was over the Syrian territory throughout the flight."
A statement from Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu's office said the Turkish leader spoke with Turkey's military chief and foreign ministry about the incident. It said Davutoglu would start "initiatives" within NATO and the United Nations.
On Friday, Turkey's Foreign Ministry summoned the Russian ambassador demanding that Russia cease operations in Syria targeting Turkmen villages, saying the Russian actions did not "constitute a fight against terrorism" but the bombing of civilians. Ambassador Andrey Karlov was warned during the meeting that the Russian operations could lead to serious consequences, the ministry said.
Turkey changed its rules of engagement a few years ago after Syria shot down a Turkish plane. According to the new rules, Turkey said it would consider all "elements" approaching from Syria an enemy threat and would act accordingly.
Following earlier accusations of Russian intrusion into Turkish airspace, the U.S. European Command on Nov. 6 deployed six U.S. Air Force F-15 fighters from their base in Britain to Incirlik Air Base in Turkey to help the NATO-member country secure its skies.
Despite harsh words, some analysts believe that Russia and Turkey have reasons not to let the incident escalate.
"Relations have been very strained between Russia and Turkey of late so Moscow will be trying its utmost to contain the damage this might cause," said Natasha Kuhrt, lecturer in International Peace and Security at King's College London. "It's a serious incident in anybody's book," added Ian Kearns, director of the European Leadership Network, a London think-tank.
The European Command said the deployment was "in response to the government of Turkey's request for support in securing the sovereignty of Turkish airspace."
In October, NATO's governing body, the North Atlantic Council, had warned Moscow it was courting "extreme danger" by sending planes into Turkish air space.
No more 'Mr. Nice Guy': Moscow's firm and swift response forever changes the Grand Chessboard
November 27th, 2015 -
By: Stevan Gajic, Institute of European Studies -
Belgrade, Serbia - for Fort Russ -
& edited by J. Flores
Moscow's firm and swift response forever changes the Grand Chessboard. The French appeared to vacillate, unable to get firm assurances from their Atlanticist partners in DC. Has this pushed Hollande towards Putin?
Events unfolded very quickly after the Turkish F16 fighter jet downed a Russian SU24 bomber over the Syrian territory, close to Turkish border. The act was characterised by Russian president Vladimir Putin as “backstabbing” on the part of the Turks. Russian authorities and the public are especially enraged because of the death of one of the pilots, and even more so by the videos of one of the pilot’s body being treated with utter disrespect by the Turkmen terrorists in Northern Syria - one of the groups that is well known for being backed by Turkey.
It seems that for Russia, the red line was crossed and it will not tolerate any harm to its forces without serious consequences and retaliation. To prove their money is where their mouth is, the Russian planes have fiercely bombed the region of Syria where the particular group of terrorists were located, and immediately deployed the notorious S400 anti-aircraft defence systems in their Khmeimim air base near the Syrian city of Latakia. This system immediately changed the balance of powers in the region as its range of fire well surpasses the territory of Syria. Needless to say that other consequences such as an economic embargo were put in place by the Russian authorities, ranging from poultry imports and gas deals, to tourism.
So why did Recep Tayyip Erdoğan make this move? One reason might be the fear of the Russian-Iranian alliance that was made public in Teheran only a day before the Russian bomber was shot. Another might be that Russia destroyed about a 1000 “ISIS” oil trucks and a an oil refinery which was a great source of cheep oil for Turkey, and some sources say Erdoğan’s family as well. Or maybe Turkey wanted to retaliate for its F4 airplane that was shot over Syria by the Syrian Arab Army three years ago.
Whatever the reason, it seems the Turks regret what they have done as their latest official statements became more apologetic, but not sufficiently, and Moscow will not settle for anything less than a clear apology. But what is more important is that Turkey officially announced its fighter aircraft will not patrol the Syrian border anymore, obviously fearing the S400 might shoot one of them.
The Turks also did not calculate another variable before they decided to strike. After the Paris carnage, France seems to be back on track with its good relations with Russia. Only couple of months ago, they were in a diplomatic struggle over the Mistral boat deal and economic sanctions imposed on Russia. But after the Paris tragedy, Francois Hollande is trying to make up, and join the war against the Islamists and even forget about the anti-Assad rhetoric.
Turkey received cold shoulder treatment from its allies too. NATO’s support for Turkey doesn’t go all the way, as the North Atlantic alliance has already showed reluctance to fight on the Turkish side in a possible Russia-Turkish war, and NATO withdrew some of their Patriot rockets from Turkey only two months ago. At the same time the UK has changed its position significantly and plans to fight the Islamists actively now. This might have something to do with David Cameron’s recent visit to China where he signed a number of large business deals with the emerging Asian empire.
The real question is, did the US leave Turkey to fry, and maybe led it to confront Russia, only to witness the consequences and take no part in further events? Or maybe the US are simply not getting their hands dirty, and want to fight Russia in a chain of proxy wars to the last Turk, Ukrainian or German (as George Friedman suggested[if !supportFootnotes][endif]), as in the “good ol' days” of the 1980’s Soviet Afghanistan war. What ever the reasons, Turkey is about to face grave consequences for its actions. Events flow in linear fashion, in one direction: Turkey cannot take back what it has done, and Russia's responses, as well as those surely to come on top of these, have forever changed the geopolitical game. If that was NATO's goal, then perhaps it succeeded - but as a result, Moscow has been given a free hand to act, and is now holding most of the cards.
Turkish Prime Minister: I Gave Order to Shoot Down Russia's Plane Myself
© REUTERS/ Murad Sezer
22:12 25.11.2015(updated 23:38 25.11.2015)
As details continue to emerge about the downing of a Russian bomber along the Turkey-Syria border on Tuesday, Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu has admitted to personally giving the order to fire on the aircraft, Canadian news outlet ThinkPol reported.
Hours after the incident which destroyed a Russian Su-24 bomber and left one pilot dead, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan went on the defensive, blaming an alleged incursion of Turkish airspace.
"We did not want this situation to happen, but everybody has to respect Turkey’s right to defend its borders," he told reporters, adding that the military’s actions were "fully in line with Turkey’s rules of engagement."
Many of the Turkish claims have already been called into question, raising doubts that the incident was a mere in-the-moment misunderstanding. Adding to that doubt are comments made by Davutoglu on Wednesday, in which he took direct responsibility for the crash.
"Despite all the warnings, we had to destroy the aircraft," he said during a meeting with his party, according to Canadian news site ThinkPol. "The Turkish Armed Forces carried out orders given by me personally."
Given the speed with which the incident occurred, it’s hard to know what to make of Davutoglu’s claim. According to the Turkish government’s own letter of explanation written to the United Nations Security Council, the military gave the Russian jet a series of warnings during a five-minute stretch, warning the pilots to move away from the border.
While the Russian Ministry of Defense has provided video evidence proving that the bomber never entered Turkish airspace, Ankara’s claim alleges that the incursion occurred for only 17 seconds.
It’s hard to imagine military personnel getting through to such a high-ranking government official, explaining the situation, and still having time to fire in a 17-second time frame.
Davutoglu’s statements seem to back up comments made by Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov earlier on Wednesday, suggesting that the incident had been premeditated.
"We have serious doubts that it was unintentional, it looks like a planned provocation," he said. "We are not planning to wage a war against Turkey, our attitude towards the Turkish people has not changed. We have questions only to the Turkish leadership."
In response, Turkey’s Western allies in NATO have urged for calm.
"What we are calling for now is calm and de-escalation," NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said during a news conference in Brussels on Tuesday. "Diplomacy and de-escalation are important to resolve this question."
This was also echoed by US President Barack Obama, who told reporters "It’s very important for us right now to make sure both the Russians and the Turks are talking to each other to find out exactly what happened and take measures to discourage any kind of escalation."
While one of the pilots was killed by ground fire after ejecting from the aircraft, the other, Captain Konstantin Murahtin, was rescued. Murahtin also denied that his plane ever entered Turkish airspace, and also refuted claims that Turkey had given multiple warnings.
Russian President Vladimir Putin described the incident as a "stab in the back by accomplices of terrorists."
RUSSIA & INDIA REPORT
S-400 in Syria: Russia gives 'stark warning' to Turkey
The Russian Ministry of Defense announced the deployment of the S-400 systems to Syria a day after Turkish warplane shot down a Russian Su-24 fighter jet.
26 November 2015 SPUTNIK
The S-400 “Triumph" anti-missile defense systems. Source: TASS
Russia has given Turkey a "stark warning" by deploying its most advanced air defense system to the Hmeymim Air Base in Syria, military analyst Vladimir Anokhin told Radio Sputnik.
"Sending [S-400] is logical. We did not expect to be stabbed in the back. After all, Turkey is part of the anti-ISIL coalition. Earlier, Russia and the US reached an agreement on information sharing," he added.
Russian airstrikes on oil tankers and refineries, according to the expert, touched President Erdogan's "sore spot – his pockets." What Russia did not take into account was how "mean" Turkey is, Anokhin observed.
The Russian Ministry of Defense announced the deployment of the S-400 systems to Syria a day after Turkish warplane shot down a Russian Su-24 fighter jet, which was taking part in Russia's counterterrorism campaign in Syria. Despite Ankara's claims to the contrary, the Russian plane did not violate Turkish airspace.
Anokhin maintains that the downing was a military and political provocation.
"It was an aerial ambush, which means that it was a planned operation. It was authorized," he noted, adding that those behind the downing had several goals in mind.
First, they wanted to scare Russia. Second, they also sought to decrease the intensity of airstrikes on the oil tankers militants use to smuggle oil from the territory they control. Third, they wanted to offer ISIL slight hope that militants would be able to continue to fight, Anokhin said.
The Washington Post
Noam Chomsky: The Country Where Journalism Is Being Murdered
By Noam Chomsky, Christophe Deloire
November 18, 2015
Journalists are the “watchdogs” of democracy, according to the European Court of Human Rights. Anyone who wants to control a country without being troubled by criticism tries to muzzle reporters, and unfortunately, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is a past master at stifling the cries of freedom. As journalists from around the world converge on Antalya to cover this weekend’s Group of 20 summit, many of their Turkish colleagues are being denied accreditation.
Sidelining opposition media has become a bad habit in Turkey, which is ranked 149th out of 180 countries in the latest Reporters Without Borders World Press Freedom Index. Four days before the Nov. 1 parliamentary elections, the police stormed Ipek Media Group headquarters and shut down its two opposition dailies and two opposition TV stations. After control of management had been secured and 71 journalists fired, these outlets resumed operations with a new editorial line verging on caricature. The dailies, Bugun and Millet, ran Erdogan’s photo on the front page along with the headlines “The president among the people” and “Turkey united.”
Journalism is being murdered. The fact that the AKP, the ruling party for the past 13 years, recovered an absolute majority in parliament has not sufficed to halt the oppression. Two days after the elections, two journalists were jailed on charges of “inciting an armed revolt against the state” in a story. Since then, some 30 other journalists have been placed under investigation for “terrorist propaganda” or “insulting the president” — the two most common charges.
On Nov. 17, 18 editors and publishers will go on trial for “terrorist propaganda” because of a photograph. They face up to 7½ years in prison. One of these journalists, Cumhuriyet editor Can Dundar, already stood accused of “spying” by Erdogan, who has vowed that Dundar “won’t get away with it.” His paper published evidence that Syria-bound trucks leased by Turkey’s National Intelligence Organization had, as suspected, been carrying arms.
For years, the growing concentration of media ownership in the hands of government allies has eroded pluralism and encouraged self-censorship. The authorities have also reined in the Internet. Following draconian reforms, the blocking of Web sites has become systematic. Turkey is responsible for more than two-thirds of the requests to Twitter to remove content. The government does not hesitate to block the entire YouTube platform.
These practices compound problems inherited from the years of military rule: laws restricting freedom of expression, a judicial culture centered on defense of the state and impunity for police violence. The metastasizing Syrian conflict and the resumption of fighting with Kurdish rebels have accentuated governmental paranoia about critical journalists. Far from defusing political and communal tension, the accelerating censorship and aggressive government rhetoric have sharpened it. Demonstrators egged on by the government’s discourse attacked the Istanbul headquarters of the daily Hurriyet twice in early September.
The G-20’s leaders must take stock of the course on which their host has embarked. They need a stable Turkey to help limit the spread of the Syrian chaos and to guarantee its people’s security and prosperity. The Turkish government must stop fueling tension and, for this, it is essential that the truth can be told. Reopening the space for democratic debate is essential for stabilizing the country. Freedom of information is part of the solution.
MATT DRUDGE: 'AMERICA HAS BEEN ARMING ISIS'
Rare tweet by media giant alludes to sinister Obama policy
Published: November 24, 2015
Matt Drudge’s first tweet in months came with a cryptic message: “A shocking truth is unfolding: America has been arming ISIS.”
The Obama administration has been plagued for weeks over news U.S. weapons supplied to Syrian rebels were inadvertently winding up in the hands of terror groups. The media giant’s tweet on Tuesday alludes to something far more sinister.
Major media outlets covered the ineptitude of Obama’s U.S.-trained rebels in early November, but there was no evidence he purposefully sent weapons to terror networks determined to attack America.
“Moderate rebels who had been armed and trained by the United States either surrendered or defected to the extremists as the Jabhat al-Nusra group, affiliated with al-Qaida, swept through the towns and villages the moderates controlled in the northern province of Idlib, in what appeared to be a concerted push to vanquish the moderate Free Syrian Army, according to rebel commanders, activists and analysts,” the Washington Post reported Nov. 2.
Similar military debacles have occurred in Iraq, where security forces in Ramadi retreated in May when confronted by ISIS attackers.
Dozens of U.S. military vehicles, including tanks, were taken into the terror group’s possession after the Iraqis’ defeat.
“We will see episodic, temporary successes, but again these typically don’t materialize into long-term gains,” Brig. Gen. Thomas Weidley, chief of staff of the Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve, said May 15, Agence France-Presse reported.
Drudge’s tweet coincides with recurring charges that U.S. Central Command analysts were pressured to supply intelligence reports on ISIS that matched Obama’s rhetoric.
Gregory Hooker, a former senior intelligence officer at Centcom, accused senior commanders last month of doctoring terror risk assessments to look unrealistically optimistic, the New York Times reported Sept. 23. Hooker previously accused the Bush administration of doing the exact opposite in 2005.
“This core group of Iraq analysts have been doing this for a long time,” said Stephen Robb, a retired Marine colonel and a former head of the Centcom Joint Intelligence Center, the newspaper reported. “If they say there’s smoke, start looking for a firehouse.”
President Obama denied the charges once again on Sunday prior to flying back to Washington from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
“I don’t want intelligence shaded by politics. I don’t want it shaded by the desire to tell a feel-good story. We can’t make good policy unless we’ve got good, accurate, hard-headed, clear-eyed intelligence,” Obama said as his nine-day trip to the Turkish Riviera and Southeast Asia ended.
Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, former head of the Defense Intelligence Agency during President Obama’s tenure, told Fox News’ Megyn Kelly on Monday that Obama’s investigation into faulty intelligence assessments should begin with a look in the mirror.
“The president sets the priorities and he’s the number one customer. So if he’s not getting the intelligence he needs and if he’s not paying attention to what else is going on, then something else is wrong there between them and the advisers he has,” Flynn said, the Weekly Standard reported
European Governments Hold "Secret" Meeting To Dismantle Borderless Travel
Submitted by Tyler Durden on 11/21/2015 09:17 -0500
Over the past three months, we’ve looked on as the Schengen Agreement - under which 28 EU nations operate open borders - unravels in the face of the overwhelming flow of refugees fleeing the war-torn Mid-East.
The disintegration of Europe’s passport free travel dream began in early September when Hungarian PM Viktor Orban constructed a razor wire fence along his country's border with Serbia. Serbia isn't a Schengen member country, but the fence marked a turning point in the way Europeans thought about the worsening migrant crisis. Orban insisted that the only way to preserve Europe's "Christian heritage" was to limit the flow of Syrian asylum seekers into the bloc and in a series of fence clashes with refugees, Orban proved he was serious by deploying water cannons and tear gas.
Serbia then promptly diverted the people flow into Croatia which is doing its best to handle the influx. From Croatia, the migrants make their way north through Slovenia into Austria and, ultimately, into Germany.
Earlier this month, Slovenia expressed concerns that if Austria and Germany took steps to slow migrants down (steps like beefed up border checks), tens if not hundreds of thousands of refugees could get stuck. With winter fast approaching, Slovenian authorities warned that the country did not have the capacity to accommodate the asylum seekers, setting up the potential for a humanitartian crisis. So, Slovenia built a fence along its border with Croatia. Once again, Croatia is not (yet) a Schenghen member but the die as they say, was cast.
Sure enough just days later, Austria began to build a mesh barrier on its border with Slovenia - it was the first fence between two members of the passport-free zone.
Meanwhile, Germany received permission from the European Commission to extend "temporary" border controls beyond an initial two month trial period and Sweden began hauling migrants without proper papers off of trains.
All of the above was before the Paris attacks.
The ISIS assault on France exacerbated anti-migrant sentiment and once it became apparent that "mastermind" Abdelhamid Abaaoud likely traveled from Syria to various European states and back again without being detected (French authorities didn't even know he was in Paris), the stage was set for a serious rethink of the passport-free ideal that's the veritable cornerstone of the European dream.
On Friday we noted that Schengen is now being seriously reconsidered. "The European Commission has agreed to present, by the end of the year, a plan to reform the Schengen border code to allow systematic and obligatory checks at all external borders for all travellers, including those who benefit from free movement," French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve told the press, after an emergency meeting.
But it may go beyond that.
According to The Times, European governments are holding "secret" talks over removing borderless travel within region. As Bloomberg reports, "if Schengen is dismantled, it’s likely to break up into several geographical blocs."
A Dutch plan, for instance, "envisages [a] borderless bloc of Austria, Germany, Belgium, Luxembourg and Netherlands with border checks for movement between other EU countries including France, Italy, Poland and Greece."
The current system is "simply not working," on unnamed diplomat says.
To be sure, there will be those who resist the idea of abandoning the principle on which the EU was built, but with each incremental attack and/or "imminent threat" (see Brussels overnight), support for an "overhaul" or even a wholesale abandonment of the agreement will grow until the idea of a European "union" becomes a relic of a bygone, pre-ISIS era.
Last Chance Monsieur Hollande - Join Russia or Remain a Neocon Poodle
French President will have to work hard to convince Putin he is serious about the war on terror
November 21, 2015
When Francois Hollande arrives in Moscow to meet President Vladimir Putin, France will be 15 years late joining Russia against Islamic terrorists. Russia has been at this war not just since the start of the military campaign in Syria against ISIL/ISIS/Daesh, but for nearly two decades.
There is no doubt that President Putin will provide all the help the French are humble enough to seek in destroying ISIL’s infrastructure in Syria and Iraq, but he is not going to indulge Hollande. The French president may yet be all bluster and bluff, directed at domestic public opinion, but Putin will not have any patience for theatrics. Hollande will need to bring substance and gravitas if he wants to create a meaningful and effective alliance against ISIL, he will need to make a genuine overture toward Russia, showing that he means business to earn its trust.
Unless he makes a fundamental shift in French policy toward Russia and against ISIL now, his successor will. France needs Russia, but Russia is not holding its breath for France even if it sheds tears for the French people.
Sooner or later, Europe will reset relations and align itself with Russia as a matter of survival. Angela Merkel and Francois Hollande can either initiate that process or watch themselves relegated to the garbage heap of history as the leaders who led Europe into an abyss. They can either set things right, or be forgotten, as leaders whose fumbling inadequacies saw the end of European security and its dreams of a prosperous future.
Europe has not imploded because of home-grown Islamic terror, or an ideology exported from Syria, but because of years of misplaced antagonism toward Russia that diverted critical resources from real threats and challenges. Worse, Hollande and Merkel joined in demonizing Russia while European acquiescence enabled the Islamic State, the most dastardly terror machine of twenty-first century, to grow.
Hollande and Merkel lost touch with the instincts of visionary Europeans, who have remained steadfast despite two decades of rampant Russophobia from the mainstream media. These people know that Russia is a natural ally of Europe, a valiant defender of humanity in the face of evil, and a guarantor of peace and security on the Eurasian continent.
Hollande would do well to visit tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Moscow and make up for his absence from the 70th anniversary of Russia’s victory over Nazism. He should also visit the Nord Ost theater - the Bataclan of Moscow - where 50 armed terrorists in suicide vests took over 850 hostages thirteen years ago, paying homage to those victims.
But if he wants to protect France and Europe from specter of Islamic terror, he will have to do more. He will need Russia to pull Europe out of the spiral of recession and economic morass.
He will need to understand that Russia won the war over domestic (foreign sponsored) terrorism not only through military strategy, but because while waging and winning a war with terrorists, Vladimir Putin created a Russian federation of democratic institutions and multiethnic cohabitation.
He will need to bring back lessons for France: how, in the face of terror, it can give new meaning to equality and fraternity with all faiths and cultures. As Russia has done, France will need to create a safe common space for all French and migrants whether they are Christians, Muslims or Jews.
Its future will be assured only if like Russia, it reasserts the founding principles of the United Nations charter, respecting the security and sovereignty of all nations.
France Responds To Paris Attacks By Rushing Through Internet Censorship Law
by Mike Masnick
Fri, Nov 20th 2015
The attacks in Paris were a horrible and tragic event -- and you can understand why people are angry and scared about it. But, as always, when politicians are angry and scared following a high-profile tragedy, they tend to legislate in dangerous ways. It appears that France is no exception. It has pushed through some kneejerk legislation that includes a plan to censor the internet. Specifically the Minister of the Interior will be given the power to block any website that is deemed to be "promoting terrorism or inciting terrorist acts." Of course, this seems ridiculous on many levels.
First, there are the basic concerns about free speech. Yes, I know this is France and it doesn't value free speech in the same way as the US, but it's still rather distressing just how quickly and easily the French government seems willing to adopt censorship measures. Second, what good does this actually do? If ISIS sympathizers are expressing their views publicly, doesn't that make it easier to track them and to find out what they're doing and saying? Isn't that what law enforcement should want? Focusing on censorship rather than tracking simply drives those conversations and efforts underground where they can still be used to influence people, but where it's much harder for government and law enforcement ot keep track of what's being said. It also only confirms to ISIS supporters that what they're saying must be so important and valuable if the government won't even let them say it. It's difficult to see how it does any good, and instead it opens up the possibility of widespread government censorship and the abuse of such a power.
Candidates Ready to Trash Constitution to Fight ISIS: “Time To Put Life Ahead of Civil Liberties”
by Mac Slavo
Date November 20th, 2015
Never mind who poked at the hive and stirred up an angry storm. Those are lessons of blowback for those with memory and perspective.
Right now the reactionary fervor is all that matters. Indeed, it is difficult to focus on much else.
In hindsight, the nation became sick and tired of the wars and the fear over terrorism under the reign of Bush 43. But in the moment, people embraced it – and that’s the danger again.
There is no clear or rational thought under fear of attack.
Under the auspices of retribution for 9/11, George W. Bush and his neocon advisors launched a roaming War on Terror that brought conflict to entire regions, and didn’t blink at bending the rules or trampling on constitutional rights. Spying, surveillance, intimidation, snitching, databasing, airport pat-downs, stop and frisk on the streets and more were all tolerated and even embraced. It was rule by fear.
The narrative didn’t add up, but that didn’t matter until later for most. People began to regret the powers granted via the PATRIOT Act to the NSA and to the executive branch to indefinitely detain anyone they declared an enemy combatant. The slide down the slippery slope was accelerating at a queasy pace.
Today, new threats from ISIS are dragging the United States dangerously close to this point again.
The one-man show that is Donald Trump, who quickly made a mockery of the GOP primary, is calling for databases and surveillance of all Muslim immigrants. Other GOP candidates are making similar proposals, eager to look toughest on this unfortunate issue. RT reports:
Donald Trump, running high in polls, proposes cataloging all Muslims living in the United States to ensure they are under constant surveillance.
“I would certainly implement that [keeping a register of Muslims]…absolutely,” Trump told NBC, adding that there are “a lot of systems, beyond databases” that could be implemented. “We should have a lot of systems. And today you can do it,” Trump said, clearly with nod in the direction of the National Security Agency (NSA) and its unprecedented surveillance capabilities.
And though the policies of opening the doors to these “refugees” is deeply flawed – and indeed invites attack from jihadists or foreign enemies – the destruction of civil rights for this group will soon harm those of every American.
It seems that someone, from one party or another, is eager to finish what Bush started, and Obama has quietly continued.
Hillary Clinton is now the only real nominee for the Democratic nomination; she has already sounded off on her plans for tougher policies and new strikes on ISIS and other targets overseas.
Now, one of her top donors, billionaire Haim Saban, has gone on the offensive, literally calling to curb civil liberties in order to meet the perceived threat of attack from ISIS. Mind you, this time, the country hasn’t even been attacked yet:
[B]illionaire entertainment mogul and major party donor Haim Saban, who donated a seven-digit sum to Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign, telling news website The Wrap it is high time to reconsider values and put life ahead of civil liberties.
Saban referred to those members of the Hollywood community who are fervently liberal and appear to value civil freedoms more than they value life.
“I disagree with that [liberal view]. You want to be free and dead? I’d rather be not free and alive,” Saban said, adding that at ‘a time of war’, interviewing Muslim refugees and migrants in a more intense way than Christians is acceptable, as well as “listening in on anyone and everybody who looks suspicious.”
If warhawks are pouring millions (and billions) into the Clinton campaign, you can imagine that they probably want a return for their money. None of this bodes well for the next four years… or any foreseeable time afterwards.
If the ‘terrorists hated us for our freedoms’ then, they should have little reason to target us now…
It is no exaggeration to say that the response by the U.S. government to the acts of terrorism, including those on September 11, have done far more destruction to its system of freedom and prosperity than bin Laden, 19 hijackers with box cutters, or drama queens from ISIS ever could.
Brandon Smith of Alt-Market has a great perspective on this – the bait and switch to convince Americans to sell their own birthright and volunteer for their own servitude.
Today, the people of the U.S. are less prosperous in real wealth, in income and in opportunities than at any other time in history. Nearly half of the country is directly dependent on the federal government benefits for day-to-day survival, and the disaster of foreign policy continues to eviscerate the Constitution and bring decline to the American empire – all while the population lives in fear and abject terror of what may come tomorrow.
A new darkness could be closing in.
No jobs, no independence, no freedom, no future – but if the government doesn’t get more power… well, conventional wisdom says it would be better to be enslaved than dead. Others know the wisdom and the strength of Liberty or death.
SMALL VILLAGE OF 40 TO RECEIVE 550 ASYLUM SEEKERS
A hotel has already been converted into an asylum center
NOVEMBER 24, 2015
IMAGE CREDITS: UN REFUGEE AGENCY.
Several residents of the village Bolkesjø in Telemark, Norway, are in despair over that they can be forced to receive 400 new asylum seekers. A hotel has already been converted into an asylum center.
Gran hotel Bolkesjø has been converted into emergency rooms for 150 refugees, and now the Directorate of Immigration (UDI) is negotiating with the owners of the village’s other hotel, Bolkesjø Hotel, about making it into an asylum center too.
A report from TV2 states that several of the 40 residents in Bolkesjø feel overrun and fear that the small village will not cope with such a massive increase in population.
– We have accepted the 150 who have come here and done our best to ensure that they are happy. But we can not accept 400 more when we are only 40 people. I think everyone realizes that, says resident Ellen-Mari Bolkesjø Brandt, to TV2.
– There is nothing to do here, and it takes two hours to go to Notodden. There is nothing to do for those who come here, she adds.
Both in Bolkesjø and in Notodden municipalities, which already have two reception centres and a third on the way, they feel that they have contributed enough to cope with the ongoing refugee crisis.
But Regional Director Eirik Eide in UDI, confirms that Bolkesjø Hotel is one of the places under consideration, but that it is not yet determined whether it is suitable as an asylum center or not.
The Washington Post
The Arctic ocean is warming up, icebergs are growing scarcer and in some places the seals are finding the water too hot, according to a report to the Commerce Department yesterday from Consulafft, at Bergen, Norway.
Reports from fishermen, seal hunters and explorers all point to a radical change in climate conditions and hitherto unheard-of temperatures in the Arctic zone. Exploration expeditions report that scarcely any ice has been met as far north as 81 degrees 29 minutes. Soundings to a depth of 3,100 meters showed the gulf stream still very warm. Great masses of ice have been replaced by moraines of earth and stones, the report continued, while at many points well known glaciers have entirely disappeared.
Very few seals and no white fish are found in the eastern Arctic, while vast shoals of herring and smelts which have never before ventured so far north, are being encountered in the old seal fishing grounds.
This report was from November 2, 1922. As reported by the AP and published in The Washington Post - 93 years ago!
Until next week...keep on believing.
“What is that which has been? the very thing which shall be: and what is that which has been done? the very thing which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.”