2018: The Year of the Sixth Seal (Revelation 6:12)

Sloshing of Earth’s core may spike major earthquakes

By Paul VoosenOct. 30, 2017 , 1:45 PM

The number of major earthquakes, like the magnitude-7 one that devastated Haiti in 2010, seems to be correlated with minute fluctuations in day length.

SEATTLE—The world doesn’t stop spinning. But every so often, it slows down. For decades, scientists have charted tiny fluctuations in the length of Earth’s day: Gain a millisecond here, lose a millisecond there. Last week at the annual meeting of the Geological Society of America here, two geophysicists argued that these minute changes could be enough to influence the timing of major earthquakes—and potentially help forecast them.

During the past 100 years, Earth’s slowdowns have correlated surprisingly well with periods with a global increase in magnitude-7 and larger earthquakes, according to Roger Bilham of the University of Colorado (CU) in Boulder and Rebecca Bendick at the University of Montana in Missoula. Usefully, the spike, which adds two to five more quakes than typical, happens well after the slow-down begins. “The Earth offers us a 5-years heads up on future earthquakes, which is remarkable,” says Bilham, who presented the work.

Most seismologists agree that earthquake prediction is a minefield. And so far, Bilham and Bendick have only fuzzy, hard-to-test ideas about what might cause the pattern they found. But the finding is too provocative to ignore, other researchers say. “The correlation they’ve found is remarkable, and deserves investigation,” says Peter Molnar, a geologist also at CU.

The research started as a search for synchrony in earthquake timing. Individual oscillators, be they fireflies, heart muscles, or metronomes, can end up vibrating in synchrony as a result of some kind of cross-talk—or some common influence. To Bendick, it didn’t seem a far jump to consider the faults that cause earthquakes, with their cyclical buildup of strain and violent discharge, as “really noisy, really crummy oscillators,” she says. She and Bilham dove into the data, using the only complete earthquake catalog for the past 100 years: magnitude-7 and larger earthquakes.

In work published in August in Geophysical Research Letters they reported two patterns: First, major quakes appeared to cluster in time

—although not in space. And second, the number of large earthquakes seemed to peak at 32-year intervals. The earthquakes could be somehow talking to each other, or an external force could be nudging the earth into rupture.

Exploring such global forces, the researchers eventually discovered the match with the length of day. Although weather patterns such as El Nino can drive day length to vary back and forth by a millisecond over a year or more, a periodic, decades-long fluctuation of several milliseconds—in particular, its point of peak slow down about every three decades or so—lined up with the quake trend perfectly. “Of course that seems sort of crazy,” Bendick says. But maybe it isn’t. When day length changes over decades, Earth’s magnetic field also develops a temporary ripple. Researchers think slight changes in the flow of the molten iron of the outer core may be responsible for both effects. Just what happens is uncertain—perhaps a bit of the molten outer core sticks to the mantle above. That might change the flow of the liquid metal, altering the magnetic field, and transfer enough momentum between the mantle and the core to affect day length.

Seismologists aren’t used to thinking about the planet’s core, buried 2900 kilometers beneath the crust where quakes happen. But they should, Bilham said during his talk here. The core is “quite close to us. It’s closer than New York from here,” he said.

At the equator, Earth spins 460 meters per second. Given this high velocity, it’s not absurd to think that a slight mismatch in speed between the solid crust and mantle and the liquid core could translate into a force somehow nudging quakes into synchrony, Molnar says. Of course, he adds, “It might be nonsense.” But the evidence for some kind of link is compelling, says geophysicist Michael Manga of the University of California, Berkeley. “I’ve worked on earthquakes triggered by seasonal variation, melting snow. His correlation is much better than what I’m used to seeing.”

One way or another, says James Dolan, a geologist at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, “we’re going to know in 5 years.” That’s because Earth’s rotation began a periodic slow-down 4-plus years ago. Beginning next year, Earth should expect five more major earthquakes a year than average—between 17 to 20 quakes, compared with the anomalously low four so far this year. If the pattern holds, it will put a new spin on earthquake forecasting.

doi:10.1126/science.aar3598

The Nations Shall “Trample” Underfoot the Holy City (Revelation 11:2)

In Gaza protests, Israeli troops aim for the legs | Fox News

December 09, 2018

In this combination of 10 photos taken on Sept. 19, 2018, Palestinians shot in the legs during demonstrations at the Gaza strip’s border with Israel pose as they await treatment at a Gaza City clinic run by MSF (Doctors Without Borders). Israeli forces deployed along the volatile border have fired live rounds at rock-throwing Palestinian protesters since demonstrations began in March against Israel’s long-running blockade of Gaza. Israeli snipers have targeted one part of the body more than any other: the legs. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

In this Sept. 19, 2018, photo, Mohammed Shabit, 26, poses as he awaits treatment at a clinic run by MSF (Doctors Without Borders) in Gaza City. Shabit says he suffered two fractures of the left leg while marching with demonstrators during a peaceful protest at the border. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

Israeli forces deployed along the volatile border with the Gaza Strip have fired live rounds at rock-throwing Palestinian protesters ever since demonstrations against Israel’s long-running blockade of Gaza began in March.

And for eight months, Israeli snipers have targeted one part of the body more than any other — the legs.

The Israeli army says it is responding to weekly assaults on its frontier by Palestinians armed with stones, grenades and firebombs. The military says it opens fire only as a last resort, and considers firing at the lower limbs an act of restraint.

Still, 175 Palestinians have been shot to death, according to an Associated Press count. And the number of wounded has reached colossal proportions.

Of the 10,511 protesters treated at hospitals and field clinics in Gaza so far, at least 6,392, or roughly 60 percent, have been struck in the lower limbs, according to Gaza’s Health Ministry. At least 5,884 of those casualties were hit by live ammunition; others have been hit by rubber-coated metal bullets and tear gas canisters.

The upsurge in violence has left a visible mark on Gaza that will likely remain for decades to come. It is now common to see young men walking through dilapidated streets on crutches. Most have legs bandaged or fitted with a metal frame called a fixator, which uses pins or screws that are inserted into fractured bones to help stabilize them.

The wounded can often be seen gathering at a treatment clinic run by the Paris-based medical charity Doctors Without Borders in Gaza City, where Associated Press photographer Felipe Dana took portraits of some of them.

Some of those he photographed acknowledged throwing stones toward Israeli troops during the demonstrations. One said he had hurled a firebomb. But others said they were unarmed bystanders; one paramedic said he was helping rescue the wounded, while another man said he was waving a Palestinian flag and another said he was selling coffee and tea.

International human rights groups have said the military’s open-fire rules are unlawful because they allow the use of potentially lethal force in situations where soldiers’ lives are not in immediate danger.

Lt. Col. Jonathan Conricus, an Israeli military spokesman, rejected international criticism that Israel’s response has been excessive. Instead, he said that firing at people’s legs was a sign of restraint.

“Sniper rifles against hundreds or thousands of rioters that are violently trying to get into Israel with the open aim of killing Israeli civilians or abducting Israeli soldiers, I don’t think that’s disproportionate,” he said. “I don’t think it’s disproportionate to shoot at feet or legs to get them to stop, rather than killing them.”

Doctors Without Borders said this month that the huge number of patients was overwhelming Gaza’s health care system, which has already been severely weekend by a blockade imposed by Israel and Egypt that has fueled economic stagnation and rampant unemployment, and devastated water and electricity supplies.

The Paris-based aid group said the majority of the 3,117 patients it has treated have been shot in the legs, and many will need follow-up surgery, physiotherapy and rehabilitation.

“These are complex and serious injuries that do not quickly heal,” the group said. “Their severity and the lack of appropriate treatment in Gaza’s crippled health system means that infection is a high risk, especially for patients with open fractures.”

“The consequences of these wounds … will be lifelong disability for many,” the aid group said. “And if infections are not tackled, then the results could be amputation or even death.”

Gaza’s Health Ministry says it has carried out 94 amputations since the protests began, 82 of them involving lower limbs.

___

Associated Press journalists Fares Akram and Felipe Dana contributed.

Preparing for World War 3 with Iran

Iran EXPOSED: ‘Uninspected’ secret nuclear sites REVEALED, sparking World War 3 fears

Iran is harbouring secret nuclear weapons sites, it has been claimed (Image: GETTY)

IRAN is harbouring secret “uninspected” military sites, “vital to the nuclear weapons programme”, which have gone unchecked by international governments, an Iranian dissident group has claimed in explosive documents seen by Express.co.uk.

By SAM STEVENSON

PUBLISHED: 01:11, Wed, Dec 5, 2018

UPDATED: 05:11, Wed, Dec 5, 2018

Hossein Abedini of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) has spoken to Express.co.uk about his group’s findings. The revelations are contained within a paper entitled, ‘Iran’s Nuclear Core: Uninspected Military Sites Vital to the Nuclear Weapons Program’. The Iranian regime has been working at five sites to enrich uranium with the purpose of developing a nuclear weapon, the Iranian Resistance document claims.

According to the NCRI paper: “Because of Tehran’s aspirations for a nuclear weapon, the bulk of the regime’s programme has been of a covert military nature.

“As a result, formulating an arms control agreement to prohibit the regime’s access to nuclear arms, as per Iran’s Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) obligations, has proven a major challenge to the international community.”

The document asserts there are five known locations at which Hassan Rouhani’s callous regime has been enriching uranium.

These sites include Natanz, Arak, Lashkar-Abad, exposed by the resistance group in 2003, Shian-Lavisan, also exposed in 2003 by the NCRI, and Fordow.

But the dissident group now claims to have new evidence of four more sites which, “with a high degree of certainty, have been involved in various aspects of the nuclear weapons project”.

They are Pazhouheshkadeh (located at the Parchin military complex, south-east Tehran), Nouri Industrial site (located at Khojir military complex, south-east Tehran), Hafte Tir site (on a military base of the same name) and Sanjarian site (close to the Parchin military complex).

More recently, the NCRI has released details of a further two sites in a paper entitled ‘Iran’s Ballistic Build Up’.

They are Mojdeh site and the Nour building.

Hossein Abedini, a member of the Iranian Resistance who was himself the victim of a failed assassination attempt in Turkey, explained the significance of his group’s discoveries.

He said: “We have exposed the clandestine nuclear sites of the Iranian regime.

“In 2002 we revealed the enrichment of uranium to a recognised degree as well as the heavy water reactor where they were trying to produce plutonium as the main core of a nuclear device.”

Following the initial revelations exposed by the NCRI, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) sent its inspectors to visit the sites.

Mr Abedini said: “They were very much astonished to see how advanced and sophisticated the nuclear technology of the Iranian regime was.”

He added: “It was only after we revealed these sites the world realised Iran had secret nuclear activity going on.

“We knew it was very, very dangerous thing – the regime only needed a nuclear device for its own survival.

“It was after that another 100 revelations were made by the NCRI.”

The IAEA did not respond to a request for comment on the NCRI’s findings.

A long-range Shahab-3 missile is fired in desert terrain at an unspecified location in Iran (Image: GETTY)

The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action – or so-called Iran Nuclear deal – was intended to curb Iran’s nuclear weapons programme and thwart its ability to create a nuclear bomb.

The accord was struck between Iran and global superpowers, China, France, Germany, the European Union, Russia, the United Kingdom and United States (who later withdrew under President Trump).

Of the deal, Mr Abedini said: “It gave a lot of unnecessary concessions to the regime, which was in a very weak position.

“It was time to get rid of all its nuclear activities but unfortunately they gave a lot of concessions which did not work and made the regime more brazen.”

The Antichrist Iraq’s premier political player

Muqtada Al-Sadr: Iraq’s premier political player

By Farhad Alaaldin 28/10/2018

Since the announcement of election results in May, Muqtada al-Sadr has emerged as the leading post-election player, taking over from Nuri al-Maliki who had always been at the head of post-election negotiations and political maneuvering.

Muqtada al-Sadr stamped his authority over the process of negotiations from the start and sustained it throughout.  He started with holding talks with all the major political parties in June and July, and then formed a new coalition (al-Eslah and al-Emaar).  He lead the coalition from the outset despite the fact that it included some of the biggest names in Iraqi politics, including Ammar al-Hakim, Haider al-Abadi, Ayad Allawi, and Osama al-Nujaifi, among others.

Perhaps the press conference that was held in Babylon Hotel on September 23 by Sadr’s young representative Ahmed al-Sadr who read a statement, with all the leading figures of the coalition standing behind him, was a clear illustration of Sadr’s authority over the other big guns and coalition partners.

Thereafter he moved on to make sure he is the one who appoints the prime minister.  Al-Eslah squabbled openly and privately with al-Binaa bloc (led by Hadi al-Ameri) for several weeks over who is the largest bloc. Both tried to win the smaller political parties; however, the race ended once Sadr and Ameri agreed on nominating the same person as PM designate, namely Adil Abdul-Mahdi.

This agreement came about after the Basra unrest and burning of the Iranian consulate. The political parties felt the urgency and gravity of the situation, they sensed that matters such as the largest bloc are petty compared to the overall danger they are facing collectively, and realized that if matters get out of hand in Basra and other provinces, they would lose more than just naming the PM.

Additionally Sadr and Ameri aligned because of a desire to stop the Islamic Dawa Party holding the Premiership for another term, their tight grip on that post has gone on for too long and this was their golden opportunity.

Sadr declared his victory in a tweet on October 26. Observers agree he is a completely different political player than what he used to be; he has emerged as a force to be reckoned with and has many more tools at his disposal to stamp his authority.

As examples:

— He used his popularity at the grass root level to put pressure on political parties. They all agreed that they could not ignore Sadr or form a new government without his participation,

— He used savvy maneuvering to make sure he is in the heart of the government formation, his representative, Sheikh Waleed al-Kremawi, was the leading negotiator in AAM’s team, calling most of the shots when it came to ministerial distribution.

— He used his parliamentary block inside the parliament to sway the voting and the proceedings during the voting session. They managed to effectively install Abdul-Mahdi as PM, and prevent opponents from taking their post in the interior minister. Sayirun first used the pretext of lack of information about candidates’ background, yet they were fully involved in the shortlisting process through their candidate in Abdul-Mahdi’s team.  They stopped the proceedings and asked for a 30 minute recess, only to comeback and distribute 14 of 22 ministries. This can only be regarded as a master stroke of parliamentary manipulation.

— He used Twitter to its maximum effect, portraying himself as the person who is calling the shots, and got what he wanted most of the time.  To this end, he prevented any current members of parliament to take ministerial positions or any previous ministers to be re-appointed in Abdul-Mahdi’s cabinet

— He adopted a winning formula to form the new government, his party has no ministers in the cabinet, yet he is seen as the person behind the formation of this new government. If Abdul-Mahdi succeed in his mission, Sadr would take plenty of credit for it; however, if he runs into trouble, Sadr would walk away and become opposition.  Either way he can maneuver into a good position without losing political credit.

Farhad Alaaldin is an advisor to the Iraqi president.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the position of Rudaw.

The Race to the First Nuclear War (Revelation 8)

Image result for nuclear war india pakistanMissile and arms race

December 7, 2018

The quick expansion of military technologies and arms race between the two nations is the mere result of their divergent threat perceptions. Obviously, the competitive security narratives and their past stories of unending hostility between the two are the root causes of such perceptions. Among all the major military technologies, Missile Technology is the most expensive one. It eats up the lion’s share of both the countries’ defence budgets.

Moreover, the history depicts that Pakistan has always created the reaction of the action initiated by India. For example, the nuclear weapons, Pakistan commenced its nuclear programme after India’s so-called “Peaceful Nuclear Explosion” in 1974. Similarly, India, first, conducted the nuclear explosion in May 1998. Hence, Pakistan was left with no other option but to react in the same way in order to balance the mismatched power in the region. Resultantly, it is high time that India realized to stop allocating its resources in unnecessary military technologies so that Pakistan doesn’t need to react to balance the disturbed power.

SHEERAZ AKHTAR BHUTTO

Shikarpur, Sindh

More Palestinians Shot Outside the Temple Walls (Revelation 11:2)

Palestinian medics move a wounded youth who was shot by Israeli troops during a protest at the Gaza Strip’s border with Israel, at the Shifa hospital in Gaza City, Friday, Dec. 7, 2018. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — Health officials say Israeli army gunfire has wounded 33 Palestinians protesting along the Gaza-Israel perimeter fence.

Thousands of Palestinians demonstrated Friday despite wintry weather, throwing rocks with slingshots at Israeli troops deployed behind the fence. The soldiers repeatedly fired volleys of tear gas and live fire, witnesses say.

Hamas, the Islamic militant group controlling Gaza, has maintained such protests on a weekly basis since March, accelerating or scaling them down to pressure Israel and mediators into easing Gaza’s crippling blockade.

Some 175 Palestinians and an Israeli soldier have been killed in the demonstrations.

Meanwhile, thousands of Hamas’ civil servants queued outside banks to collect paychecks donated by Qatar.

For the second straight month, Israel allowed Qatari mediators to inject cash for the much-needed salaries, hoping it would calm tensions.