NEVER FORGET THAT G-D IS IN CONTROL OF ALL EVENTS.
READ LEVITICUS CHAPTER 26 AND YOU WILL UNDERSTAND THIS DEBKA STORY.
Exclusive: Israel-Hamas truce deal abandons Israeli captive, like Lebanon ceasefire
June 15, 2008, 1:44 PM (GMT+02:00) FROM "DEBKA"
Commenting on the truce deal shaping up between Israel and Hamas for the Gaza Strip, DEBKAfile’s military sources note that the Olmert government has given way to Hamas on its two key demands: the incorporation in the package of the Israeli soldier, Gilead Shalit, who was kidnapped two years ago on Israeli soil, and an end to arms smuggling through Sinai for the Hamas war arsenal.
Those sources note the similarity of this case with that of UN Security Council Resolution 1701 which halted the Lebanon War two years ago; then too, Israel buckled under outside pressures and failed to obtain the release of two Israeli soldiers, Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev, who remain in Hizballah’s hands to this day.
As DEBKAfile reported last week, Israel has essentially accepted Hamas ceasefire terms formulated by Egypt, as Egyptian intelligence minister Gen. Omar Suleiman will inform a Hamas delegation led by Musa Abu Marzuk from Damascus and Mahmoud a-Zahar from Gaza Sunday, June 15.
Hamas, supported by Cairo, stipulates Gilead Shalit’s return will take place in a separate deal for the list of jailed Palestinians handed Israel some months ago. They include hundreds of hard-case terrorists.
Under the deal, Hamas undertakes to stop its cross-border fire from Gaza and Israel to halt its counter-terror operations for a six-month period, during which Israel will ease its blockade of the territory (reopen some border crossings). Cairo wants to include the Gaza-Egyptian border terminal at Rafah in the deal. If the truce holds up in Gaza, it may be extended to the west Bank.
Hizballah used the 2006 Lebanon ceasefire as a platform for its wholesale rearmament by Iran and Syria and has since denied any scrap of informaton on the fate of the two Israeli soldiers snatched by its gunmen in a cross-border incursion within two weeks of the Shalit kidnap.
The same pattern has developed in Gaza, where the Palestinian clients of Tehran and Damascus are calling the shots with Egypt’s help.
WATER IN IOWA'S capital could take weeks to go below flood levels.
Downtown Cedar Rapis, Iowa, looks more like Venice as floodwaters engulf the state's second-largest city.
Jun 13, 11:31 PM (ET)
By AMY LORENTZEN
CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) - Hospital patients in wheelchairs and on stretchers were evacuated in the middle of the night as the biggest flood Cedar Rapids has ever seen swamped more than 400 blocks Friday and all but cut off the supply of clean drinking water in the city of 120,000.
As many as 10,000 townspeople driven from their homes by the rain-swollen Cedar River took shelter at schools and hotels or moved in with relatives.
About 100 miles to the west, officials in Iowa's biggest city, Des Moines, urged people in low-lying areas to clear out by Friday evening. The Des Moines River was expected to crest at 8 p.m., but officials said just before the expected peak that a malfunctioning gauge may have led them to overestimate how high it would rise.
Officials became less worried that the levees would be topped, but U.S. Army Corps of Engineers spokesman Roger Less said the city of 190,000 residents would not be out of danger until Saturday.
Mayor Frank Cownie, who said the call evacuation call was an attempt to "err on the side of citizens and residents," later said he didn't regret that residents were advised to leave, despite the faulty gauge.
"Absolutely not," Mayor Frank Cownie said. "I was here in 1993. I saw what happened. I saw what happened to my business. I saw what was happening to every other thing in Des Moines."
The flooding was blamed for at least two deaths in Iowa: a driver was killed in an accident on a road under water, and a farmer who went out to check his property was swept away.
Since June 6, Iowa has gotten at least 8 inches of rain. That came after a wet spring that left the ground saturated. As of Friday, nine rivers were at or above historic flood levels. More thunderstorms are possible in the Cedar Rapids area over the weekend, but next week is expected to be sunny and dry.
For decades, Cedar Rapids escaped any major, widespread flooding, even during the Midwest deluge of 1993, and many people had grown confident that rising water would pose no danger to their city. The flood this time didn't just break records; it shattered them.
The Cedar River was expected to crest Friday night at nearly 32 feet, an astonishing 12 feet higher than the old record, set in 1929.
Flooding left 2 inches of water in the emergency room at Mercy Medical Center in Cedar Rapids on Thursday night, and water spilling into the lower levels threatened to knock out the hospital's emergency generator.
A total of 176 patients - some of them frail, about 30 of them from a nursing home at the medical center - were moved to other hospitals in an all-night operation that was not completed until daybreak.
Gov. Chet Culver declared 83 of the state's 99 counties disaster areas, a designation that helps speed aid and opens the way for loans and grants. The damage in Cedar Rapids alone was a preliminary $737 million, Fire Department spokesman Dave Koch said.
The drenching has also severely damaged the corn crop in America's No. 1 corn state and other parts of the Midwest at a time when corn prices are soaring. But officials said it was too soon to put a price tag on the damage.
At Cedar Rapids' Prairie High School, where 150 evacuees waited, people could be seen crying in the cafeteria while others watched flood coverage on TVs set up in the gym. Tables were lined with shampoo, toothpaste, contact lens solution and other items, and piles of clothes were separated by size.
At the school, Lisa Armstrong wept as she watched TV news footage of her own rescue. She saw herself climbing into a boat, and watched rescuers trying to coax her dog out of the house. They finally grabbed the animal and pulled it out.
Cedar Rapids warned people to conserve drinking water after the floodwaters knocked out electricity to all but one of the city's half-dozen or more wells. The one working well was protected by sandbags and generators that were pumping water away from it.
Hotels implored guests to use water only for drinking.
The city's newspaper, The Gazette, continued to cover the story with the help of emergency generators. But the floodwaters were just outside the front door, and the place had no running water. Portable bathrooms were set up outside for the staff.
Interstate 80 was closed east of Iowa City to Davenport after the Cedar River washed over the highway. Amtrak service aboard the California Zephyr was suspended between Denver and Chicago because of flooded-out tracks.
Violent thunderstorms Thursday and Friday brought widespread flooding to Michigan's Lower Peninsula that authorities say left some roads and bridges unstable or impassable, blew roofs off buildings and downed trees and power lines.
Weary residents in waterlogged southern Wisconsin began cleaning up Friday from a new spate of storms the night before, including nine reported tornadoes and some flash floods. Gov. Jim Doyle formally requested a federal disaster declaration Friday night for six of the state's hardest hit counties.
People in several northern Missouri communities, meanwhile, were piling up sandbags to prepare for flooding in the Missouri River, expected to crest over the weekend, and a more significant rise in the Mississippi River expected Wednesday.
TIM RUSSERT DIES FROM APPARENT HEART ATTACK
By CHARLES HURT
June 13, 2008 --
Tim Russert, NBC journalist and political heavyweight host of "Meet the Press," has died after collapsing at NBC's Washington news bureau, a source said. He was 58 years old.
Russert, who rose from the inside world of politics where he was former New York Gov. Mario Cuomo's press secretary and one-time chief of staff to the late Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan, was able to successfully cross over to political journalism and rise to become one of its leading lights.
MICAH CHAPTER 5
FROM THE DRUDGE REPORT
AT GOD'S MERCY
THE CROPS ARE FAILING, THE WEATHER IS A DISASTER IN THIS COUNTRY AND THIS WORLD, YOU MUST READ LEVITICUS CHAPTER 26........
PLEASE READ THIS BIBLE SCRIPTURE NOW
Jun 12, 9:23 PM (ET)
By AMY LORENTZEN
CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) - The Cedar River poured over its banks here Thursday, forcing the evacuation of more than 3,000 homes, causing a railroad bridge to collapse and leaving cars underwater on downtown streets.
Officials estimated that 100 blocks were underwater in Cedar Rapids, where several days of preparation could not hold back the rain-swollen river. Rescuers had to use boats to reach many stranded residents, and people could be seen dragging suitcases up closed highway exit ramps to escape the water.
"We're just kind of at God's mercy right now, so hopefully people that never prayed before this, it might be a good time to start," Linn County Sheriff Don Zeller said. "We're going to need a lot of prayers and people are going to need a lot of patience and understanding."
About 3,200 homes were evacuated and some 8,000 residents displaced, officials estimated.
"We are seeing a historic hydrological event taking place with unprecedented river levels occurring," said Brian Pierce, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Davenport. "We're in uncharted territory - this is an event beyond what anybody could even imagine."
Gov. Chet Culver has declared 55 of the state's 99 counties as state disaster areas.
No deaths or serious injuries were reported in Iowa, but one man was killed in southern Minnesota after his car plunged from a washed-out road into floodwaters. Another person was rescued from a nearby vehicle in the town of Albert Lea.
In Des Moines, officials said they were urging residents to evacuate more than 200 homes north of downtown because of concerns that the Des Moines River would top a nearby levee. Some residents also were ordered to evacuate homes along rivers in Iowa City and Coralville.
"It's going door to door to make sure people don't need to be rescued, because right now they can't get out on their own," said Dave Koch, a spokesman for the Cedar Rapids Fire Department. "It's just too deep."
The surging river caused part of a railroad bridge and about 20 hopper cars loaded with rocks to collapse into the river. The cars had been positioned on the bridge in hopes of weighing it down against the rising water.
Joe Childers, an official at a U.S. Bank in downtown Cedar Rapids, was in jeans and tennis shoes as he worked to move documents and other items upstairs or out of the building.
"We're trying to keep water out of as many places as we can," he said. "It's pretty amazing. I don't think anyone really expected it this far."
"We've had to move our operations out of the area and to our alternate emergency site," Zeller said. "We are just trying to regroup. When you don't have all of your equipment and you don't have all your facilities to operate out of - we're at a little bit of a disadvantage ... but we're carrying on as normal."
Several emergency shelters were opened, and the city had closed all but one of its bridges over the Cedar River.
"I believe that this is God's way of doing things, and I've got insurance, so I'm not worried about it," said Tim Grimm, who was forced to leave his home in the city's Czech Village area.
In Austin, Minn., the Cedar River crested 7.4 feet above flood stage. The river went about 5 feet higher in a 2004 flood that caused major damage in the city.
Some businesses and offices were closed, including a Hormel Foods corporate office and its Spam Museum, but floodwaters were already receding by Thursday afternoon. The floodwaters did claim the life of a man whose vehicle became submerged when the road washed out from under it just west of Austin.
Flooding this week also caused damage across southern Wisconsin, where thunderstorms continued pounding the area on Thursday.
Iowa County Emergency Management Director Ken Palzkill said his county saw an "unprecedented" amount of rain Thursday afternoon. He said the village of Cobb got 3 inches of rain in an hour.
The weather service issued flash flood watches for southern Wisconsin with tornado watches in central and eastern areas. Several tornadoes briefly touched down, but no injuries were reported.
Flash flooding in Grant County in the southwestern corner of Wisconsin closed two highways and required rescues, authorities said. Three homes were destroyed and others had major damage from the flooding, which reached several feet deep in spots, according to Julie Loeffelholz of Grant County Emergency Management.
Just southeast of Grand Rapids, Mich., crews pulled the body of a motorist from a car found drifting in the swollen Thornapple River. State police said they believe the 57-year-old man called on his cell phone but didn't say what happened or where he was; they found him using global positioning equipment.
People in several northern Missouri communities, meanwhile, were piling up sandbags to prepare for flooding in the Missouri River, expected to crest over the weekend, and a more significant rise in the Mississippi River expected Wednesday.
Israel is currently experiencing its fourth consecutive year of drought. The drought is so bad that last winter’s rainfall was only 65 percent of the long-term average. Even though the main pipeline transporting water from the Sea of Galilee to the rest of the nation was closed for part of the year, the water level in the sea has dropped close to the danger line. Meanwhile, the Jordan River has been reduced to a comparative trickle.
The water shortage crisis has escalated to the point where the Israeli government is now spending an additional 120 million shekels (us$37 million) on improving water conservation and 915 million shekels (us$282 million) on improving water recycling for agricultural usage. Government members are also calling for the production of more desalination plants in order to more effectively utilize Israel’s salt-water resources.
The main aquifer that feeds many of Israel’s wells lies under the West Bank, and approximately one third of Israel’s fresh water comes from rain, snow and natural springs in the Golan Heights. Ironically enough, it is during this current water crisis that the Olmert administration has put both the West Bank and the Golan Heights on the negotiating table.
Israel has been fair in divvying up its diminishing water resources between the Jews and the Palestinians in the country. If the West Bank becomes a Palestinian state and the Golan Heights is annexed to Syria, Israel’s Arab enemies will not be near so benevolent in ensuring that Israel gets the water it needs.
Weather-related crises are getting more frequent and more devastating, not just in America and Britain, but also in Israel. These three nations are linked together by culture, by history, and by a past knowledge of God’s law. Rejecting that law in all three nations has led to these weather-related crises.
For more information on the strong ties that once bound America, Britain and Israel together, read “Band of Brothers” by Stephen Flurry, and Herbert W. Armstrong’s book The United States and Britain in Prophecy. •
My wife called me from the supermarket today and asked, “You remember how I found it so difficult to find natural cleaning compounds that were not petroleum based?” I answered in the affirmative. “Well,” she said, “there is a whole shelf of natural cleansers on the shelf this week!”
Now, that’s enough to make a greeny salivate—that is until you really think about why such products are now appearing increasingly on the supermarket shelves. It’s really nothing to do with the supermarket chains becoming suddenly environmentally friendly. It simply has to do with the unheard-of hike in oil prices. Any petroleum-based product, which includes many a household cleansing compound, is subject to a dramatic price increase in tandem with the escalation of the price of crude oil. Thus, all of a sudden, many natural organic compounds are becoming cost-competitive with their petroleum-based alternatives.
Supermarkets are driven by profit inducement, not by the heart, as too are the financiers of this world’s economy. Napoleon Bonaparte is credited with saying, “Money has no motherland; financiers are without patriotism and without decency; their sole object is gain.” That’s why it’s the merchants that weep and wail over the destruction of the whole Babylonish economic and financial system when it finally comes crashing down around their ears (Revelation 18:11, 15). The signs of that coming crash are all around us.
The trouble is that few of those who shape public opinion on such matters as the domestic economy are locked into reality. Thus, the possibility of the failure of our whole economic structure is not even contemplated. When it is, by a few of the saner voices among the commentariat, the conclusion is generally that “we’ve always managed to get out of our economic scrapes in the past, so we’ll all pull together to do it again.”
The very best of minds geared to the reality of the functioning of the global financial system know that this world is in deep trouble, and the largest single national economy of all is in the deepest of trouble. But even these clever thinkers fail to see the missing dimension that is the driving force behind world conditions, including—and very much so—the global economy.
The fact is, there has never been a time in the history of man where climate, geography, political and economic conditions have so favored a group of nations as has been the case with the English-speaking peoples over the past 400 years.
The beginning of the rise of the English-speaking peoples to national greatness can be traced to the time of Elizabeth i (1533–1603). Considered by many as a formidable type of the Deborah of ancient Israel, Elizabeth’s greatest hour came with the defeat of the mighty Spanish Amada in 1588, Sir Francis Drake leading the English navy into victorious battle.
That the queen and her subjects saw victory over the Spanish fleet as due to godly intervention on their behalf is a fact of history. Elizabeth immortalized acknowledgment of the intervention by Almighty God to deliver England from Catholic Spanish tyranny by striking a medal inscribed with the words “God blew and they were scattered” on its face. The inscription referred to the hand of God evident in a timely eastern gale that dashed many of the Spanish galleons on the shores of Scotland and Ireland as they fled before the onslaught of the English fireships.
From that date forward, the English-speaking peoples continued to triumph over their enemy. Following overwhelming victory at Trafalgar in 1805 and Waterloo in 1815, the British became the world’s undisputed naval and military power. For a whole century the globe enjoyed the beneficence of British domination under “Pax Britannica,” a period of peace unprecedented since Roman times, yet without the cruelty of the old Roman Empire.
British global domination ended with World War i, which saw the rise of the United States as a world power. America’s power as a global political, economic and military force was consolidated subsequent to the Allied victory of World War ii. That victory guaranteed a half-century continuance of political, economic and military dominance of the world by the Anglo-Americans, consummating in the defeat of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics via victory in what became known in the latter half of the 20th century as the Cold War.
Then came 9/11.
That challenge to America’s superpower status by a handful of Muslim extremists broke both the pride and the prestige of American power (Leviticus 26:19). The U.S. has been on an accelerating decline as a world power ever since.
When the president of the single greatest nation on Earth goes twice within the first half of this year to lobby, cap in hand, the most influential voice in opec, Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah, to open wider the Middle East oil tap, that is a massive sign as to the tremendous loss of national prestige the U.S. has suffered since it strode the world as a singular superpower colossus following the ussr’s demise 16 years ago.
For the second time in less than four decades, opec now holds the world to ransom, awash with its ill-gotten gains from the world’s main energy resource as oil continues its bull run on the world market.
The result is felt in the pocketbook of every Anglo-Saxon, be he British, Canadian, Australian, New Zealander or American. All are feeling the effects.
Last week the official unemployment rate reached 5.5 percent of the population in America. It is destined to go much higher over the coming months as state governments and corporations continue to cut labor costs.
It was recently reported that “The oecd’s early warning signal is flashing clear signs of economic weakness across the world, with mounting evidence that China, India and Brazil may soon succumb to the downturn” (Telegraph, May 18).
Already, signs of looming economic problems are emerging from the dominant eurozone economies. “The closely watched gauge—known as the Composite Leading Indicators (cli)—has picked up a sharp deterioration in the eurozone in March, notably in Italy and France where the advance signals are falling even faster than in Britain. The measure tends to anticipate the industrial cycle by about six months” (ibid.). This does not bode well for the coming European winter. The report indicated that “Russia is the only country still in full boom among the so-called bric quartet of rising powers, but the country’s inflation rate reached 14.3 percent in April as oil and gas wealth … flooded the economy.”
As the effects of the massive oil price hike ripple over the globe, the signs are that four centuries of ascendancy of the English-speaking peoples are well and truly being written into history as a phenomenon of their past.
The Anglo-Saxons are being hit increasingly hard in their pocketbook. The question is, how long will it take these stiff-necked peoples to wake up and acknowledge the real reason why they are rapidly losing hold of the greatest physical blessings ever given to any group of kindred nations in the whole of the documented history of this world?
Believe it or not, it is not due to the present price of oil and gas! The real reason runs much deeper than that. It involves a whole dimension of knowledge of which the English-speaking nations have become most willingly ignorant!
There was a time when Deborah, that grand and heroic prophetess of ancient Israel, acknowledged this missing dimension. It was at a point in Israel’s history where the nation needed deliverance from its enemy. God intervened and delivered Israel.
Once, in the history of the English nation, a Deborah-like heroine queen sought the intervention of God to deliver her nation from foreign invasion, and God answered. Queen Elizabeth promptly acknowledged that godly intervention.
Once, Lord Nelson prayed to God for the delivery of Great Britain from its enemy at the commencement of a decisive naval battle, and he got it, giving his life in the process.
Twice the combined forces of the English-speaking peoples were delivered from tyranny in great world wars. Their king, their prime minister and military leaders sought the intervention of Almighty God to carry them to victory, and He did. Then they acknowledged His deliverance.
Since that last great victory gained against the forces of tyranny in 1945, no longer has God backed the English-speaking nations in gaining outright victory in war.
Why is this so?
For the same reason that God is not backing the economies of the English-speaking nations at this moment in their history.
In the words of Abraham Lincoln, “It is the duty of nations, as well as of men, to own their dependence upon the overruling power of God, to confess their sins and transgressions, in humble sorrow, yet with assured hope that genuine repentance will lead to mercy and pardon; and to recognize the sublime truth, announced in the Holy Scriptures and proven by all history, that those nations only are blessed whose God is the Lord.”
It’s been an awful long time since the leader of any English-speaking nation called that nation to a day of prayer and fasting for its national sins. Abraham Lincoln is memorialized as an icon in American history. Yet his message to the nation has been long forgotten.
If only we would heed Lincoln’s words today. For we English-speaking peoples have, over four long centuries, despite the occasional ravages of war, “been the recipients of the choicest bounties of heaven,” as Lincoln acknowledged. “We have been preserved, these many years, in peace and prosperity. We have grown in numbers, wealth and power, as no other nation has ever grown. But we have forgotten God. We have forgotten the gracious hand which preserved us in peace, and multiplied and enriched and strengthened us. … [W]e have become too self-sufficient to feel the necessity of redeeming and preserving grace, too proud to pray to the God that made us!”
Our failure to acknowledge the Source of all of our national blessings is simply resulting in their collective withdrawal by their giver, the Almighty, Eternal, Creator God!
We are feeling it, increasingly, in the pocketbook.
How long will it be before we feel it in our heart?
NEED A WIFE ??