World Watch Today

Saudi Arabia seeks to assert itself

11 17 2017

Mohammed bin Salman, the future King of Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia is attempting to flex its muscle. Mohammed bin Salman has increased Saudi intervention in Yemen, with bombing strikes and air, land and sea blockades. He has tried to isolate Qatar, hoping to turn it into an obedient satellite state. He has apparently forced the Lebanese prime minister to resign, attempting to destabilize the Iranian backed Shiite-dominated government in Lebanon. All these are part of a struggle to fight back against Iran’s growing regional impact.

Of note internally is the fact that the Saudis have a large youth population – at least two-thirds of all citizens are under the age of 30. Unrest is mounting in this oil-rich country. Most of the unrest is coming from the young who see government corruption and religious extremism as holding back their future. The future king, Mohammed bin Salman, has been making unparalleled moves against the religious establishment as well as the royal family itself, including imposing social reforms (women can now drive), and ordering the arrests of dozens of princes and senior officials. And let’s not forget, the young future King certainly has enemies but as of yet they have not played their hand.

What we are seeing today is that Middle East Saudi stratagem is struggling. The war in Yemen has turned into a quagmire, creating a civil war on Saudi Arabia’s border (Yemen). Yemen (rebels there who are backed by Iran) is surging with fury against the Saudi Kingdom. Qatar refuses to give into Saudi Arabia—tensions are increasing between the two nations. And Lebanon could collapse into another vicious civil war. Don’t expect things to calm down soon.

Saudi Arabia has to spend a lot of money to keep up with its proxy war against Iran—its great enemy in the region. Remember Saudi Arabia is Sunni—Iran is Shiite. These nations do not fight each other directly but instead they wage expensive proxy conflicts throughout the region. When protests began in 2011 against the Iranian-backed regime of Bashar al-Assad in Syria, the Saudis used their oil wealth to back rebel groups that are anti-Iran. All of this costs money. The leadership in Iran believes Saudi Arabia will eventually collapse under the weight of its own internal power struggles, in the interim, the best thing Iran can do is engage Saudi Arabia in expensive and time-consuming proxy wars thus draining the Saudi treasury.

We must always keep in mind that Saudi Arabia is prophetically significant–We believe Saudi Arabia is home to the descendants of Ishmael: “He (Ishmael) will be a wild donkey of a man; his hand will be against everyone and everyone’s hand against him, and he will live in hostility toward all his brothers.”—Genesis 16:12. That description continues to play out in real time even today.

Saudi Arabia is a big player in the Middle East—we need to watch this nation and its internal challenges more closely.

Amazing facts about Germany (updated):

11 05 2017

German Chancellor Angela Merkel

●For the past 5 years Angela Merkel, Chancellor of Germany, has be voted the world’s most powerful woman.
●Angela Merkel is considered the 3rd most powerful leader in the world by Forbes magazine; President Putin of Russia is ranked #1, President Trump of the USA is ranked #2, and Angela Merkel of Germany is ranked #3.
●German companies employ over 730,000 people in the United States. The #1 German employer in America is Siemens, employing nearly 50,000 people. Siemens is a leading supplier of systems for power generation and transmission as well as medical diagnosis equipment.
●By a wide margin, Germany is the world’s #1 exporter of cars: Cars are the world’s number one export product, besting crude petroleum revenues which have been handicapped by tumbling oil prices. Last year’s 3 largest exporters of cars in dollar value were: Germany: US$151.9 billion (21.8% of total car exports), Japan: $91.9 billion (13.2%), the United States: $53.8 billion (7.7%).
●Famous American companies that are German owned: Trader Joes (popular California food store), T-Mobile, Bayer corporation (Bayer aspirin), Allianz Life Insurance, DHL Holdings (delivery company), Random House (publisher), Daimler Group (Daimler owns or has shares in a number of car, bus, truck and motorcycle brands including Mercedes-Benz).
●Germany export more goods in dollar terms to America than to any other nation, more than it exports to China.
●Germany is the world’s No. 3 arms exporter, after the United States and Russia-(most people are amazed at this stat)-Israel and Saudi Arabia, are among Germany’s elite customers. So are Algeria, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates.
●The Israeli Navy presently maintains a fleet of five state-of-the-art German underwater submarines of the Dolphin Class, which can be equipped with nuclear warheads, with a sixth due for delivery this year.  Germany makes some of the world’s most advanced high-tech submarines.
●Germany is the 2nd largest financial contributor to the Catholic Church; America ranks as the #1 contributor to the Catholic church.
Germany has one of the lowest birthrates in the world. There is a scarcity of children in Germany. Over the past 20 years nearly 2000 schools were closed in Germany due to a shortage of children in the country.
●There are approximately 117,000 Jews living in Germany today, compared with 475,000 Jews living in France.
●Deutsche Bank is Germany’s biggest bank, and the second-largest bank in Europe, Deutsche Bank is not doing well. This is fact is alarming. Deutsche Bank is one of the world’s 10 largest banks in terms of total assets– the International Monetary Fund has said it’s “the most important net contributor to systemic risks” to the global financial system. So, if Deutsche Bank gets into trouble, this will shake the world financial markets
●Germany has over 400 zoos, the most in the world.
●65% of the Autobahn (highway) has no speed limit.

Note that we are watching this closelyGermany is making moves on the military front. President Trump has hinted that the United States might refuse to protect members that fail to meet the NATO defense spending target of 2 percent of GDP. On Jan. 18, Germany’s defense minister announced that Berlin would boost its military budget this year by nearly 2 billion euros ($2.1 billion) to reach 37 billion euros. Germany has vowed to continue increasing defense expenditures over the next three years. Germany is almost forced to focus more of its attention on defense.

In the not too distant future-we are told that political chaos in Europe (Revelation 17), will lead to a newly formed confederation of states that will be beastlike (terribly destructive). We believe that Germany will play the leading role in the end-time beast system.  We are also told in the book of Daniel, that God often removes and sets up leaders according to His purpose and insights: Daniel 2:21- He controls the course of world events; He removes kings and sets up other kings…thus we watch Europe with this in mind, and with intense interest!

European leaders will eventually choose one single dictator, the prophesied “beast,” –he will set up a system that will be extremely brutal (Revelation 17 verses 12 and 13).  European extremism will return to European cities.  Jesus Christ himself will destroy this end-time empire; and then Christ will establish the Kingdom of God on earth, that Kingdom will rule the nations with justice and force.  Europe is important-we will continue to watch events in Europe, and we will monitor closely political change in Germany -doing so with a differentiating eye-Steven LeBlanc

Latest discussion from German TV regarding the election in Austria– worth viewing:

Right-wing rise in Austria

WORLD WATCH TODAY SPECIAL REPORT

North Korea Update

FROM THE DESK OF STEVEN LEBLANC

Adoring female soldiers with Kim Jong-Un, leader of North Korea

Adoring female soldiers with Kim Jong-Un, leader of North Korea

During his first appearance before the UN General Assembly President Trump said Kim was “on a suicide mission” and asserted that if North Korea continued its hostile acts, the US would “have no choice but to totally destroy” the country.  He has labelled Kim as the ‘rocket man’.  North Korean leader Kim Jong Un personally fired back at President Donald Trump, calling him a “mentally deranged US dotard.”  Kim calls President Trump “a rogue and a gangster fond of playing with fire.”   Kim’s foreign minister later said North Korea may test a hydrogen bomb in the Pacific Ocean to fulfill Kim’s vow to take the “highest-level” action against the United States.

The North Korean situation has– so very quickly, deteriorated. Pyongyang has made it clear, it does not fear the United States.  North Korea shows no signs of stopping or even slowing down its attempts to achieve an effective nuclear deterrent. And neither will it cease test-firing projectiles on a ballistic trajectory over Japan.  The hard Truth is this:  The United States will either have to accept North Korea as a nuclear power, or it will have to destroy North Korean nuclear facilities while it still can.  No one knows at this point if America will eventually go to war with North Korea.

This war of words impacts more than just America and North Korea, a cluster of nations are involved. How are these nations reacting, and what are they saying to American leaders?:

South Korea: Given the choice between a major war to end the North’s nuclear program and accepting a North Korea armed with nuclear weapons, South Korea would choose the latter. South Korea is terrified of a war with the North, and will do almost anything to avoid that war. North Korea would respond to a U.S. attack by exacting enormous casualties on Seoul, South Korea’s capital and economic heart, using its artillery to attack of the city  of Seoul (10 million population–The sprawling metropolitan area is much larger at 25.6 million people).

President Donald Trump tweeted a message to the South Koreans accusing them of appeasement. The South Koreans released a statement saying South Korea’s top interest was to guarantee that it would never again experience the destruction it endured during the Korean War.  From South Korea’s perspective, a war with North Korea would mean tens of thousands of South Koreans would die. South Korea must, above all, preserve Seoul.  It cannot allow another Korean War to break out. (The first Korean war claimed the lives of more than a million South Koreans.)

Japan is very concerned about the escalation in tensions.  Japan depends on the U.S. for protection, if America appears weak then Japan would quickly seek out offensive military means of its own.  North Korea has never been a conventional military danger to Japan. But nuclear weapons change the assessment. Pyongyang now, for the first time, poses an existential threat, one that Japan, is very stressed over.  The Japanese therefore have an interest in the destruction of North Korea’s nuclear capabilities.  Whispers out of Washington infer that vulnerable Japan will secretly urge the United States to attack early while publicly counseling restraint.

China:  China does not want war on its border, hoping that North Korea will remain a Communist buffer against South Korea and its ally, the United States. But China is growing increasingly annoyed with North Korea.  North Korea is not listening at all to China.  Mr. Kim’s refusal to listen to China shows how far apart China and the North have become, said Chen Jian, emeritus professor of history at Cornell University.  “Kim and North Korea are making more trouble and headaches for Xi and Beijing than anyone else in today’s world,” Mr. Chen said. “Why should China fight a war against the U.S. for Kim and North Korea’s sake?” This Chinese expert asserts: “I think China’s diplomatic leverage over North Korea is zero,” said Feng Zhang, a fellow at the Australian National University’s department of international relations. “North Korea doesn’t want to see Chinese envoys and is not interested in Chinese views.”

Russia:  Russia is glad to see the crisis continue. Why?  Because now America is focused on North Korea and not on Russia; or the fact that Russia is stepping up its involvement in Ukraine.  A distracted America allows Russia to pursue its goals more vigorously.

America:  Rather than go to war, Washington may resolve to greatly increase its maritime strategy of dominating the Pacific and supporting, with the full force of American strength, the allies it needs in order to contain North Korea (such as Japan). South Korea’s abhorrence to go to war gives weight to this belief.

NK Missile capabilities png

 FACTS about NORTH KOREA

1.Population of North Korea (26 million); Leader is 33 year old Kim Jong-un
2.“Thanks to one of the largest standing armies on the planet—with over 1.2 million men under arms and another 7.7 million in reserve—and with chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons carried by over 1,000 missiles, Pyongyang has the capability to kill millions of people and start a conflict that could quickly escalate into the next global catastrophe” (Harry Kazianis, “After North Korea Attacks: An Ominous Asian Future Imagined,” The Week,March 31, 2017).
3.There are an estimated 50,000 North Korea laborers working overseas, according to the United Nations, the majority of them in China, and many off the books.
4.According to Chinese customs data, for example, North Korea imports 2.2 million barrels of petroleum products per year, but U.S. estimates put that figure closer to 4.5 million. And in any case, most experts think North Korea has enough stockpiles of fuel, earmarked for military use, to last awhile.

The pin of Kim Il-sung (grandfather), and Kim Jong-un’s deceased father, Kim Jong-il, is to be worn by every citizen while in public (who is 16 years of age and older). Most children also wear the pin.

The pin of Kim Il-sung (grandfather), and Kim Jong-un’s deceased father, Kim Jong-il, is to be worn by every citizen while in public (who is 16 years of age and older). Most children also wear the pin.

KJU and wife

Wife of Kim Jong-un–Ri Sol-Ju—they have 3 children

 Prophecy: We do not know if North Korea and America will go to war in 2018, no one knows. We are told in the book of Daniel, that God often removes and sets up leaders according to His purpose and insights: Daniel 2:21–God controls the course of world events; He removes kings and sets up other kings…thus we watch the Korean crisis with intense interest!

When watching nations and geopolitical trends ALWAYS keep in mind that the spirt world is at work, toiling behind the scenes; often demons are motivating and influencing world leaders to make certain decisions. It reminds me of the lying spirit that swayed King Ahab as recorded in 1 Kings 22. In 1 Kings 22 we are told of a council of war between the kings of Israel and Judah. Treacherous King Ahab and the good Jewish King Jehoshaphat were planning war against Syria to regain land that Israel had lost. At the council, God’s prophet Micaiah was brought before the two kings, he revealed a perceptive vision from the throne of God, revealing how the world of angels and demons can sway world leaders:

Micaiah viewed God sitting on His throne and the spiritual host of heaven around Him. “Then a spirit came forward and stood before the LORD, and said, ‘I will persuade him [Ahab].’ The LORD said to him, ‘In what way?’ So he said, ‘I will go out and be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets’” (verses 21-22). God was allowing Ahab to be persuaded by his advisors (influenced by a lying spirit) to engage in a battle that would lead to Ahab’s death. The lesson for us is that at times lying demonic spirits work through government advisors and Leaders [types of false prophets] to prevail upon tyrants to make rash decisions. With this background; I cannot help but to consider that demon spirits will be involved, provoking the leader of North Korea.

Bible prophecies have long foretold the rise of an end-time Asiatic superpower capable of producing a huge army that will ultimately fight against a European beast power stationed in Jerusalem (Daniel 11:44; Revelation 9:13-17).  Most likely North Korea will be part of the 200 million man army that makes it way across the Euphrates river as it advances to Jerusalem (Revelation 9:16). That is yet to take place in the future, soon before Christ’s return.

Worth watching! Latest insights on North Korea from George Friedman:

Page 1 of 6412345...102030...Last »
© 2017 World Watch Today
Sitemap | Website by Noble Image