History Expects the Sixth Seal in NYC (Revelation 6:12)

Based on historical precedent, Armbruster says the New York City metro area is susceptible to an earthquake of at least a magnitude of 5.0 once a century.

According to the New York Daily News, Lynn Skyes, lead author of a recent study by seismologists at the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory adds that a magnitude-6 quake hits the area about every 670 years, and magnitude-7 every 3,400 years.

A 5.2-magnitude quake shook New York City in 1737 and another of the same severity hit in 1884.

Tremors were felt from Maine to Virginia.

There are several fault lines in the metro area, including one along Manhattan’s 125th St. – which may have generated two small tremors in 1981 and may have been the source of the major 1737 earthquake, says Armbruster.

There’s another fault line on Dyckman St. and one in Dobbs Ferry in nearby Westchester County.

“The problem here comes from many subtle faults,” explained Skyes after the study was published.

He adds: “We now see there is earthquake activity on them. Each one is small, but when you add them up, they are probably more dangerous than we thought.”

“Considering population density and the condition of the region’s infrastructure and building stock, it is clear that even a moderate earthquake would have considerable consequences in terms of public safety and economic impact,” says the New York City Area Consortium for Earthquake Loss Mitigation on its website.

Armbruster says a 5.0-magnitude earthquake today likely would result in casualties and hundreds of millions of dollars in damage.

“I would expect some people to be killed,” he notes.

The scope and scale of damage would multiply exponentially with each additional tick on the Richter scale. (ANI)

Antichrist is Correct: U.S. is an ‘invader country’

Muqtada al-Sadr, Shia cleric, calls U.S. an ‘invader country’ in Iraq

By Carlo Muñoz

Muqtada al-Sadr, the firebrand Shia cleric and head of Iraq’s newly elected ruling class, vowed on Wednesday to deny the U.S. any role in the country’s national security efforts, casting further doubt on the future of the American mission there.

“The U.S. is an invader country; we do not allow it to interfere at all,” Mr. Sadr said in a statement Wednesday, in response to queries regarding how his political coalition dubbed the Sairoon alliance plans to form a new Iraqi government, in the wake of the Islamic State or ISIS’s defeat in the country.

The proclamation comes at a tenuous time for U.S. military brass at the Pentagon, who are piecing together a plan to reshape the current Iraq mission — focused on dismantling the Islamic State terror group in the country — into a longer-term, more advisory and more multinational campaign akin to current American-led operations in Afghanistan.

The Trump administration is believed to have opened a communications backchannel to Mr. Sadr and his top aides to probe the cleric’s position toward the prospect of a long-term U.S. military presence.

Mr. Sadr’s political bloc captured over 40 percent of the parliamentary vote during last week’s elections, with the the Iranian-backed Fatah alliance coming in second place, according to voting results. Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi’s Victory alliance came in third place, forcing Mr. Abadi’s party to form a ruling coalition with Tehran and the Sadrists.

The Shia cleric has repeatedly called for the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq, threatening those troops could become targets of Shia paramilitary groups, such as the Madhi Army.

Prior to the rise of ISIS in Iraq, Mr. Sadr’s Mahdi Army and other Sadrists battled U.S. and coalition forces in Najaf and Sadr City during some of the worst fighting of the American occupation of the country in mid-2000.

While Mr. Sadr saved his harshest rhetoric on Wednesday for Washington’s continued presence in Iraq, he took a more conciliatory tone toward concerns the country may fall further under Iran’s sway once his coalition takes power.

“Iran is a neighboring country that fears for its interest and we hope it will not interfere in Iraqi affairs,” he said, according to the statement first reported by Turkish news outlet Anadolu Agency.

Mr. Sadr has gone to great lengths to distance himself from Iran and tried to head off a narrative that he’d do Tehran’s bidding once in power. But concerns remain in Washington and Baghdad that his opportunistic political strategy to build his power base in Iraq could lead to closer ties to Tehran.

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Hamas Will Choose War (Revelation 11:2)

 

JNS.org — This week’s mortar fire on southern Israel is the ‎gravest security escalation on the Israel-Gaza ‎border since “Operation Protective Edge” in ‎the summer of 2014, though Israeli defense officials ‎believe that Israel and Hamas, which rules Gaza, can still avoid a ‎full-fledged ‎military conflict. They say that the choice of ‎what happens next is in the hands of Hamas. ‎

This escalation did not happen overnight. It began ‎with the failure of the so-called “March of Return” ‎that Hamas unleashed on the border two weeks ago ‎to mark Nakba Day, which commemorates the “catastrophe” of the Arabs’ defeat in ‎Israel’s 1948 War of Independence. Only several thousand marchers took part, with around 60 Palestinians — most of them terrorists — killed. Since then, ‎Hamas’ border-riot campaign has been dwindling.‎

To try to maintain friction with Israeli security ‎forces, Hamas has spared no effort to turn the ‎border area into a terrorist zone, and has ‎given its operatives –and Palestinian protesters — a free hand to carry out attacks, including ‎hurling firebombs, sending incendiary kites and ‎balloons over the border, and placing explosives on ‎the security fence. ‎

Israeli shelling in response to one of these attacks killed ‎three Islamic Jihad operatives. The terrorist group ‎claimed responsibility for Tuesday morning’s rocket salvo, ‎but there is no doubt that Hamas gave it the green light. ‎

Hamas gambled that Israel would ‎mount the obligatory measured response, and this would end the current round. But Israel mounted a large response instead, striking ‎dozens of terror hubs and destroying a Hamas ‎tunnel in southern Gaza. Hamas was pressured ‎to respond, both by its own members and the other ‎terrorist groups in Gaza. In a bid to maintain ‎control, Hamas decided to join the ‎fray.‎

One defense official called it the “Fatah syndrome,” ‎saying that Hamas’ biggest fear is being ‎perceived, like its rival faction Fatah, as doing ‎nothing to take part in the Palestinian struggle.‎

Still, Hamas made it clear to its operatives that ‎their fire must be limited to the Israeli communities near the border and avoid long-range attacks on larger cities like Ashdod, Beersheva, ‎and even Tel Aviv. ‎

Israeli defense officials debated the intensity of ‎Israel’s response, but it was widely believed that ‎decisive action was needed to make it clear to Hamas ‎that a red line had been crossed. ‎

From a public diplomacy standpoint, Israel placed ‎responsibility for the escalation in the south on ‎Hamas and Iran, ‎which sponsors the terror organization and spurs it to action. ‎Islamic Jihad was also condemned to a lesser ‎degree, despite its direct involvement. Israel was careful and sought to avoid Palestinian ‎casualties as much as possible.

The Israeli response was meant mostly to give Hamas the necessary ‎leeway to contain the situation before it spirals ‎out of control. Naturally, the Israeli military is ready for ‎that to happen, but it still prefers to avoid a ‎war if possible.‎

Egypt and Qatar played roles as brokers on Tuesday to little effect. The decision of where to go ‎from here remains with Hamas. If it mounts a ‎minor response to the Israeli airstrikes in Gaza, Israel will be able to pull back. But if the mortar ‎and rocket salvos continue, the IDF will retaliate ‎forcibly and the situation could easily deteriorate from ‎there. ‎

The prevailing view in Israel is that Hamas has no ‎interest in such escalation, but its conduct ‎is confused and erratic, which is a recipe for ‎mistakes. ‎

Even if an escalation is avoided, this ‎is hardly the end of the story. Gaza is on the ‎brink of eruption for a variety of reasons, most ‎notably the dire economic and humanitarian ‎situation coupled with growing political frustration. Given Hamas’ failure to ‎provide Gazans with any solutions, it can go on one ‎of two paths: a ceasefire or war. Both options are still on the table.‎

Yoav Limor is a veteran Israeli journalist and columnist for Israel Hayom.

Trump is helping the Islamic State

Trump’s pullout is a gift for the Iranian hardliners. And Eruope isn’t having any of it

 

The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) was signed in 2015 between P5+1 (US, UK, France, China, Russia and Germany) and Iran to stop Iran from getting nuclear weapons. It helped preventing Iran from production of fissile material for at least 10 to 15 years. However, the US President pulled out of the nuclear deal, which is possibly the greatest blunder ever by the US that not only damages the ability of the West to prevent Iran from getting nuclear weapons but also undermines the credibility of nonproliferation regime which works for the nonproliferation of nuclear technology on global level. This unilateral decision by the US would necessarily draw Iran closer to China and Russia. In fact, the move by the US has somewhat already pushed these three states closer to each other.

Iran is already helping Russia in favour of Bashar al-Assad in Syria. The head of the Iran economic affairs Mohammad Reza Pour Ebrahimi stated that “our ties with Russia would be strengthened and not only will the previous agreements remain in force, but, there will be new ones, there will be new contracts”.

Iran nuclear deal had not only managed to roll back the Iranian nuclear program, but also set in place strict monitoring measures to prevent Iran from ever acquiring nuclear weapons. This deal and strict security measures played an important role in preventing Iran from developing highly enriched Uranium and Plutonium needed to make a nuclear bomb. President Trump withdrew from this deal without offering suitable substitute. It is interesting to note that that this move by the US has in fact isolated the US by separating it from its European friends; they are not happy with the US over this step. Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani said that Iran would remain committed to the deal and would achieve the goals of the deal in cooperation with the other members. According to the statement of President of the European Commission, Jean Claude Juncker, “European companies would not comply with American laws against Iran and it will launch laws that ban European companies and courts from obeying US sanctions against Iran”.

The US would be disappointed if it expects that Iran would give up its regional activities in Syria and Iraq. Iranian military officials said that Iran would not come under the US pressure to limit its military activities in the region.

According to the international nuclear experts President Trump has handed a huge gift to Iran by freeing it to build up nuclear weapons and containing international inspections. Trump’s decision has increased the probabilities of war as Iran can now build nuclear weapons. It also undermines the US’ influence around the globe. It proves that the US cannot be trusted with its promises. It would also increase Iran’s hostility towards the US and its presence in Syria and Iraq. The US withdrawal from the deal also puts a serious question mark on the diplomatic efforts of Obama and the EU. If Trump is thinking about a better deal to renegotiate he would find it very difficult because Iran would no more trust the US which just unilaterally withdrew from the deal that was successfully being followed by Iran through regular IAEA inspections of its nuclear sites. The US would be disappointed if it expects that Iran would give up its regional activities in Syria and Iraq. Iranian military officials said that Iran would not come under the US pressure to limit its military activities in the region.

There is also a possibility that Iran might move to another extreme to enhance its security. Russia and China would also increase their cooperation with Iran as Russian interests already match with that of Iran and Iran-Russia partnership would limit the US influence in the region. It would also increase Iran’s dependence on Russia and trade between both states. This move by the US has intensified the Iranian nationalism. When Iranian public will face the re-imposed sanctions again, their hatred would be increased against the US. Hence, one can rightly say that it is the US gift for the hardliners in Iran which challenges the podium of moderate elites like Hassan Rouhani. It not only justifies the hardliners’ arguments but has also managed to considerably increase the dominance of Iranian hardliners, hence closing the doors of diplomatic interaction with Iran in the future.

The author is a Research Associate at Strategic Vision Institute Islamabad.

The Antichrist tries to unify the two Islamic horns

Muqtada al-Sadr visit to Kuwait aimed at ‘improving ties between Iraq and Arabs’

 

Al Arabiya

Iraqi Shiite leader Moqtada al-Sadr concluded on Wednesday a two-day visit to neighboring Kuwait, holding talks with Kuwait officials related to bilateral relations between the two countries.

In a statement published on Sadr’s official website, his office said that the visit came at the official invitation of the Kuwaiti government. It added that he had met with Kuwaiti Emir Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah in order to discuss “the bilateral relations between the two countries and ways to strengthen them to serve the interests of the two brotherly peoples.”

In an interview with Al Arabiya, a Sadr spokesperson said that the aim of the visit was to “improve relations between the two brotherly people” adding that al-Sadr is “in the process to establish balanced relations with everyone, and focus on the relations with the Arab Gulf nations.”

The spokesperson pointed out that ”this goal will be realized with the formation of a strong government adopting his stances” considering that the Sairoon Alliance made up of the Sadrist Movement and the Communist Party, had a sweeping win in the Iraqi parliamentary elections, which took place on May 12 of this month.

The official said “Sadr has been able, through his continuous strive to improve Iraqi-Arab relations, after years of disconnection, in order to balance the relations that Iraq maintains with its other non-Arab neighbors” as the spokesperson puts it.

In this regard, Tareq al-Aboudi a political analysis said to al-Arabiya.net that “Sadr strives to improve relations between Iraq and Saudi Arabia last year and which was successful, has pushed him to take the same step towards Kuwait I order to narrow the gap following the invasion of Kuwait by Slain former Iraqi president Saddam Hussein in the nineties.”

Al-Aboudi said “the Sadr’s control over the political situation following his alliance swiping win in the parliamentary elections as well as his moves to form the biggest bloc, will form an additional push to improve Iraq’s position among his brotherly Arabs and which will be for the country’s interest.”

He added that “the course of political reality in Iraq indicates a shift away from the sectarian discourse adopted during the previous governments, which negatively affected the political, security and social reality of Iraq.”

Last Update: Wednesday, 30 May 2018 KSA 22:46 – GMT 19:46

Pushing for the Iranian Nuclear Horn (Daniel 8)

Adviser to Iran’s top leader pushes uranium enrichment

Associated press

TEHRAN, Iran — A top adviser to Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, is proposing Iran resume its uranium enrichment in the wake of the U.S. withdrawal from the nuclear deal between world powers and Tehran.

Ali Akbar Velayati was quoted Wednesday by the semi-official Tasnim news agency as saying Iran is “capable to spin centrifuges for enrichment” to higher levels should it choose to do so.

Velayati says Iran should also accelerate production of nuclear propulsions and also research on advanced centrifuges. He claimed this wouldn’t violate the nuclear deal which put limits on Iran’s atomic program in exchange for lifting economic sanctions.

In the wake of President Donald Trump’s decision to pull the United States out of the deal, several Iranian officials have indicated Tehran could resume its nuclear program.