Two Centuries Before The Sixth Seal (Revelation 6:12)

The worst earthquake in Massachusetts history 260 years ago
It happened before, and it could happen again.
By Hilary Sargent @lilsarg
Boston.com Staff | 11.19.15 | 5:53 AM
On November 18, 1755, Massachusetts experienced its largest recorded earthquake.
The earthquake occurred in the waters off Cape Ann, and was felt within seconds in Boston, and as far away as Nova Scotia, the Chesapeake Bay, and upstate New York, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.
Seismologists have since estimated the quake to have been between 6.0 and 6.3 on the Richter scale, according to the Massachusetts Historical Society.
While there were no fatalities, the damage was extensive.
According to the USGS, approximately 100 chimneys and roofs collapsed, and over a thousand were damaged.
The worst damage occurred north of Boston, but the city was not unscathed.
A 1755 report in The Philadelphia Gazette described the quake’s impact on Boston:
“There was at first a rumbling noise like low thunder, which was immediately followed with such a violent shaking of the earth and buildings, as threw every into the greatest amazement, expecting every moment to be buried in the ruins of their houses. In a word, the instances of damage done to our houses and chimnies are so many, that it would be endless to recount them.”
The quake sent the grasshopper weathervane atop Faneuil Hall tumbling to the ground, according to the Massachusetts Historical Society.
An account of the earthquake, published in The Pennsylvania Gazette on December 4, 1755.
The earthquake struck at 4:30 in the morning, and the shaking lasted “near four minutes,” according to an entry John Adams, then 20, wrote in his diary that day.
The brief diary entry described the damage he witnessed.
“I was then at my Fathers in Braintree, and awoke out of my sleep in the midst of it,” he wrote. “The house seemed to rock and reel and crack as if it would fall in ruins about us. 7 Chimnies were shatter’d by it within one mile of my Fathers house.”
The shaking was so intense that the crew of one ship off the Boston coast became convinced the vessel had run aground, and did not learn about the earthquake until they reached land, according to the Massachusetts Historical Society.
In 1832, a writer for the Hampshire (Northampton) Gazette wrote about one woman’s memories from the quake upon her death.
“It was between 4 and 5 in the morning, and the moon shone brightly. She and the rest of the family were suddenly awaked from sleep by a noise like that of the trampling of many horses; the house trembled and the pewter rattled on the shelves. They all sprang out of bed, and the affrightted children clung to their parents. “I cannot help you dear children,” said the good mother, “we must look to God for help.”
The Cape Ann earthquake came just 17 days after an earthquake estimated to have been 8.5-9.0 on the Richter scale struck in Lisbon, Portugal, killing at least 60,000 and causing untold damage.
There was no shortage of people sure they knew the impretus for the Cape Ann earthquake.
According to many ministers in and around Boston, “God’s wrath had brought this earthquake upon Boston,” according to the Massachusetts Historical Society.
In “Verses Occasioned by the Earthquakes in the Month of November, 1755,” Jeremiah Newland, a Taunton resident who was active in religious activities in the Colony, wrote that the earthquake was a reminder of the importance of obedience to God.
“It is becaufe we broke thy Laws,
that thou didst shake the Earth.

O what a Day the Scriptures say,
the EARTHQUAKE doth foretell;
O turn to God; lest by his Rod,
he cast thee down to Hell.”
Boston Pastor Jonathan Mayhew warned in a sermon that the 1755 earthquakes in Massachusetts and Portugal were “judgments of heaven, at least as intimations of God’s righteous displeasure, and warnings from him.”
There were some, though, who attempted to put forth a scientific explanation for the earthquake.
Well, sort of.
In a lecture delivered just a week after the earthquake, Harvard mathematics professor John Winthrop said the quake was the result of a reaction between “vapors” and “the heat within the bowels of the earth.” But even Winthrop made sure to state that his scientific theory “does not in the least detract from the majesty … of God.”
It has been 260 years since the Cape Ann earthquake. Some experts, including Boston College seismologist John Ebel, think New England could be due for another significant quake.
In a recent Boston Globe report, Ebel said the New England region “can expect a 4 to 5 magnitude quake every decade, a 5 to 6 every century, and a magnitude 6 or above every thousand years.”
If the Cape Ann earthquake occurred today, “the City of Boston could sustain billions of dollars of earthquake damage, with many thousands injured or killed,” according to a 1997 study by the US Army Corps of Engineers.

Iran says it defeated US Outside the Temple Walls: Revelation 11

Hossein Salami, deputy head of Iran's Revolutionary Guard, speaks during Tehran's Friday prayers July 16, 2010. (photo credit: MORTEZA NIKOUBAZI/ REUTERS)

Iran says it defeated US in region, mocks Israel failure against Hamas

IRGC commander Hossein Salami bragged that the US is losing on all fronts. “We see the symbols of victory and the signs of retreat and defeat of the enemy,” he said.

Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Commander Maj.-Gen. Hossein Salami this week celebrated the “retreat” of Iran’s enemies in the region. “We are witnessing obvious retreats of enemies and great powers from the region,” he was quoted by Iran’s Tasnim News Agency as saying. He was referring to the US leaving Afghanistan.

“These days, we look at the retreat and the last months of the US presence in Iraq,” he said. “We see their failure in the dangerous Lebanese project. We see the defeat of enemy targets on the Syrian front; we see the defeat of the enemy’s goals and movements in the sanctions against Iran, and we see the defeat of the enemy in the political and economic siege of our system.”

Salami bragged that the US is losing on all fronts. “We see the symbols of victory and the signs of retreat and defeat of the enemy,” he said.

While he sees positive portents of Iran’s victory, another Iranian supporter was also giving an interview to Tasnim. Talal Naji, secretary-general of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine General Command, looked at the recent May battle between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

He praised Qasem Soleimani, the late commander of the IRGC’s Quds Force, for his “prominent role in countering US-Zionist conspiracies and strengthening and advancing the defense of resistance groups in the region, especially Palestine, Syrian relations and the resistance, and [removing] obstacles to the advancement of Palestinian national unity.”

Qasem Soleimani, commander of IRGC Quds Force (credit: SAYYED SHAHAB-O-DIN VAJEDI/WIKIMEDIA COMMONS)

Qasem Soleimani, commander of IRGC Quds Force (credit: SAYYED SHAHAB-O-DIN VAJEDI/WIKIMEDIA COMMONS)

Naji discussed the importance of the recent battles in May, noting that Palestinians across Israel, which he calls “the occupied territories of 1948,” were involved in clashes with Israelis.

“The Palestinian resistance in the Gaza Strip took the initiative to help Quds [Jerusalem],” he said, adding that “the most important achievement of the Battle of the Sword of Quds [the May war between Israel and Hamas] was the realization of the national unity of the people among all spectrums of the Palestinian nation.”

“Most Palestinians are lovers of the Islamic Republic of Iran,” he claimed. “This love is not just because of fascination with the Islamic Republic, but because of objective reasons.”

NAJI WENT on to say: “Soleimani played a major role in the development of missiles in the Gaza Strip. The battle of the Sword of Quds and the achievements of the resistance in it were among the effects of Martyr Soleimani, the great commander.” The US killed Soleimani in 2020, turning him into a “martyr.”

The PFLP-GC leader said Soleimani “personally supervised the training, weapons transfer and development of weapons [for Palestinians].” The recent war was different than those in the past because of the riots across Israel, he said, adding: “Three generations have passed since the tragedy of 1948, and this is the third generation. We revolted in 48 lands: In all the Palestinian lands, 48 in all the villages, towns and cities in Al-Nusra, Acre, Jaffa, Umm al-Fahm, Tayyiba, Ara, Arara” and other areas.

Despite the technological power of the US and the “Zionist regime,” the Palestinians have mobilized against Israel with the support not only of Soleimani, but also the late Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, a Shi’ite leader in Iraq who the US also killed with Soleimani in 2020, he said.

It has been thought that Iranian-backed Shi’ite militias in Iraq have been growing closer to the Palestinians in recent years. This may be evidence of that.

Palestinian relations with Syria have grown stronger, Naji said, adding that he was happy to see some in the US Congress critique Israel in recent months. He also bashed Gulf states that have “normalized” relations with Jerusalem.

IN HIS discussion, Naji slammed the Oslo Accords, saying: “We want the realization of the national unity of Palestine, because, as you know, one of the conditions for the victory of any nation in the world against any foreign enemy that occupies its land, confiscates its rights and displaces its inhabitants is national.”

He then, oddly, praised the Trump administration. “The issue of the two-state solution goes back to the initiator of the plan and the owner of the two-state solution, the US government, while the position of then-president Donald Trump was clearly that this solution and this goal were left off of the negotiating table,” he said.

“As you know, Trump and his son-in-law [Jared] Kushner and many American officials have said that this is not a viable solution, and that it is impossible to implement it,” he said. “The solution is not discussed and common, and its realization is impossible.”

Naji aid the West Bank has become like “Swiss cheese,” with small areas of Palestinian Authority control. Ultimately, the Palestinians need to achieve unity, as they did during the May conflict, and spread conflict across all of Israel, he said. Iran’s support is apparently essential to this.

Iran’s project across the region now includes not only support for the Palestinian groups, as well as Hezbollah and groups in Iraq, but also attempts to divide European countries regarding the Iran deal. Tehran is slow-playing the deal in Europe, hoping to get more concessions. Iran doesn’t seem to want more negotiations now.

The larger context is that Iran uses its media to transmit its goals. The interview with the PFLP-GC leader is not really about what that small group can accomplish, but to inform readers that the Palestinians care about Iran’s support and that Iran investing resources in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, and Gaza is effective. Many Iranians are tired of the regime wasting funds abroad while people are poor at home.

The messaging about the May conflict is clear: Iran wants to push Gaza into a new war, hoping that Israel will suffer diminishing returns fighting such wars

The British Nuclear Horn Stages a Comeback: Revelation 8

HMS Queen Elizabeth (R 08) conducts a replenishment-at-sea in the South China Sea., cc Official U.S. Navy Page, modified, https://flickr.com/photos/usnavy/51351941357/in/photolist-2meN86g-2kWqQvc-A2yrhM-2kLCiUC-2gXABPz-2knkiXE-yZZH7w-2kLSQET-A1ppmJ-2kLMdnt-2kZoUcW-fqWPet-2joWfAY-2jY94a9-2kyv9fK-2kLC2Qc-2jQ7GHM-2kLQX9n-2kLCkQg-2k8MD8h-2m58p49-2kZwsvm-2m1rTkX-2jXHm7A-KdwCuo-BMtMEj-qTo81J-2j5AXZ1-2kJZR6X-2j5CvQj-zUJoRh-7MUVQT-2j5Cwhb-2j5EoVD-2kMFAZS-4GT7WC-4GNXRi-XhGmaz-2iBMrrE-2hwQE1Q-2iFqrVo-nYd9Zc-2jj5xdD-Mu5wJx-2kZoUe4-HEBLde-2iBP2Xq-2gjaUFz-2hnxwzi-2kLRpfG

Britain Stages a Comeback in the Indian Ocean

By Sankalp Gurjar

In the last week of October, Britain and India will conduct their first tri-service exercises. After the United States (US) and Russia, Britain will be the third country with whom India will conduct such an exercise. British aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth will participate in these exercises. The exercises and the deployment of the British Carrier Strike Group (CSG) to the Indo-Pacific region signify the return of Britain to the geopolitics of the region lying “East of Suez.”

The term “East of Suez,” popularized by a well-known British writer Rudyard Kipling through his poem “Mandalay,” was an important concept in the British strategic discourse. The British colonies and outposts in West Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia and Pacific were all located “East of Suez.” The control over the continental and maritime spaces of the region lying along the Indian Ocean and parts of Western Pacific contributed in making Britain a global empire and a dominant power. Till the fall of Singapore in 1941 to the Japanese Imperial military, Britain reigned supreme over the waters of the Indian Ocean.

In the 19th century and first half of 20th century, the expansive British presence and imperatives of imperial strategy, inadvertently, had unified the region from the Suez to the South Pacific, the geographic extent of the Indo-Pacific region, which is in much vogue now. Post Second World War, Britain realized that it could not maintain the wide-ranging military presence “East of Suez.” In 1968, British Prime Minister Harold Wilson announced the withdrawal from the “East of Suez” by 1971 and the power vacuum left by Britain was sought to be filled by the US and Soviet Russia.

Fifty years after that, Britain is staging a comeback to the Indian Ocean. A series of steps indicate the growing British interest in the Indian Ocean and Western Pacific. Earlier this year, Britain has expressed its intentions to increase its presence in the Indo-Pacific region in the Integrated Review of its foreign and security policy. The review stated that the Indo-Pacific region is “on the frontline of new security challenges, including in cyberspace.” In fact, Britain’s strategic, military and economic interests in the region push it to “work closely with regional partners” and it aims to “do more through persistent engagement by our armed forces and our wider security capacity-building.”

Britain is the third partner of the much-publicized security alliance between Australia, US and the United Kingdom, known as the AUKUS. In fact, when the AUKUS was announced on 15th September, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson statedthat the purpose of the alliance is “to preserve security and stability in the Indo-Pacific.” Furthermore, AUKUS “will be one of the most complex and technically demanding projects in the world.” As a result, it has tied the US, UK and Australia in a long-term defence partnership that will see the US and UK arm Australia with nuclear-powered attack submarines. The AUKUS is critical in the evolving strategy to manage China’s rise in the Indo-Pacific region and will facilitate the growing British role in the region.

The recent deployments of the CSG to the Indian Ocean and Western Pacific are in line with the British intentions to stage a comeback in the region. Through defence diplomacy and military deployments, Britain has signalled its willingness to regularise its military presence in the region. The return to the Indian Ocean fits well with the strategy of “Global Britain” pursued by Britain after the exit from the European Union (EU). Britain’s key strategic partners like India, Australia, Oman, Bahrain and Kenya are located in the Indian Ocean. Britain is a key member of the Five Power Defence Arrangement (FPDA) which includes Australia, Singapore, Malaysia and New Zealand and seeks to become a dialogue partner of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

Until the Second World War, the Indian Ocean was known as a British Lake and even now, the Indian Ocean is probably the largest English-speaking region in the world. Apart from the strategic imperatives and significant economic stakes, the English language and cultural connections also play a role in facilitating the British return to the region. Britain is considered as one of the most likely candidates in the “Quad-Plus” arrangement as it enjoys strong strategic relationships with the Quad partner countries (India, US, Japan and Australia).

However, for Britain, there are challenges to its “return” to the Indian Ocean. The first challenge is about the British military capabilities. Does Britain have sufficient military capability to maintain a regular military presence in the Indian Ocean, let alone project its power to shape regional developments? Or does it have to piggyback on the US? If Britain is to channelize its energies towards the Indo-Pacific, how will it respond to the challenges closer home, including Russia?

Unlike France and the US, Britain does not enjoy an expansive network of military bases facilitating a regular strategic presence in the Indian Ocean region. Reorienting the British strategy towards the Indian Ocean will require Britain to augment its defence capabilities by spending more on the defence including on its navy and air force. Does Britain, after the exit from the European Union (EU), have the political willingness, financial capability and diplomatic staying power to do so?

The second challenge is the thorny issue of the Chagos archipelago which houses the formidable US military base of Diego Garcia. Britain retained the control of the strategically located Chagos archipelago even after the independence of Mauritius and allowed the US to establish a military base at Diego Garcia. Mauritius claims the Chagos archipelago and has won a case in the International Court of Justice on the issue. The controversial issue is yet to be resolved to the satisfaction of all three parties and poses a challenge in the British narrative of its return to the Indian Ocean.

The third challenge is Britain’s relationship with China and Pakistan. China is a major economic partner of Britain. Post-Brexit, can Britain afford to decouple its economy from China? Britain’s Integrated Review notes that the bilateral trade benefits both parties and yet, China presents the biggest state-based threat to Britain’s economic security. The strengthening of a defence alliance with US and Australia, which will have direct implications for China’s security environment in the Western Pacific, and China’s heavy-handed approach, displaying complete disregard for the past agreements, to the issue of Hong Kong’s autonomy (which was a former British colony) – all of this has complicated Britain’s relationship with China.

Moreover, Britain’s, generally well-disposed attitude towards Pakistan puts constraints on the full realization of the potential of Indo-British strategic partnership. Will Britain be able to minimize the contradictions in these relationships to augment its presence in the Indian Ocean?

Finally, the EU is taking a greater interest in the Indo-Pacific affairs as could be seen in its activities such as the release of the Indo-Pacific strategy. Decisions such as the Brexit and the betrayal of France through the AUKUS alliance has not made it any easier for Britain to stage a comeback in the Indian Ocean. What will be the British position towards the EU’s emerging role in the Indo-Pacific? Can they co-operate citing shared values and convergence in interests? Will EU, especially France, be willing to facilitate the British role in the Indian Ocean?

These considerations will determine the nature and scope of the British return to the Indian Ocean.

The views expressed in this article are those of the authors alone and do not necessarily reflect those of Geopoliticalmonitor.com

When Colin Powell Squandered His Spectacular Career For Bush Jr: Revelation 13

Colin Powell standing next to an American flag.
Colin Powell in 2009 in Washington. Brendan Smialowski/Getty Images

The Moment When Colin Powell Squandered His Spectacular Career

The revered general and statesman, who died Monday, couldn’t outmaneuver his bureaucratic rivals.

Fred KaplanOct 18, 20212:23 PM

Colin Powell, who was the nation’s top diplomat, its top general, and the first Black man to be either, died on Monday at the age of 84. Rarely, if ever, has an American statesman or warrior risen to such heights of power, then been cut off at the knees by his bureaucratic rivals.

Born in Harlem to Jamaican parents, a classic tale of a working-class kid pulling himself up by his own bootstraps, Powell joined the Army, fought in Vietnam as a grunt, rose through the ranks to corps commander, then, after a stint as President Ronald Reagan’s national security adviser, was named by President George H.W. Bush to be chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

As a rare officer who combined battlefield experience with political savvy, Powell turned the chairmanship into a powerhouse, utilizing his large staff—several hundred of the military’s smartest officers, split into several specialized units—in a way that, as one official at the time told me, “ran circles around the rest of the national-security bureaucracy.” It was in that position that Powell emerged as a public figure, devising much of the strategy for the first Gulf War, which pushed Iraq’s invading army out of Kuwait, and explaining the strategy at several televised press conferences.

During that time, he also enunciated what came to be called the “Powell doctrine,” a view that the U.S. should go to war only if the political objectives are vital and defined, if military force can achieve those objectives at an acceptable cost, if all nonviolent means have failed—and then, if war is necessary, that we should go to war only with overwhelming force. The doctrine amounted to a critique of the U.S. intervention in Vietnam—both its flawed rationale and its piecemeal tactics—and has influenced the debate on the proper role of military force ever since.

After Democrats regained the White House in 1992, Powell wrote a bestselling memoir, My American Journey, and considered running for president. (His wife, Alma, urged him not to run, fearing that some racist would assassinate him.) When the Republicans won again in 2000, President George W. Bush named Powell secretary of state, to unanimous acclaim, in what seemed the pinnacle of his rise—but it proved to be the start of his downfall. Taking office with an air of confidence, assuming that he could rule the realm of foreign policy through his clout and popularity, he soon found himself—to his initial surprise—outmaneuvered, on one major issue after another, by the tag team of Vice President Dick Cheney and Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, who had been friends and colleagues dating back to the Nixon administration.

Powell accomplished a great deal on issues that Cheney and Rumsfeld didn’t care about. In the fall of 2001, they let him conduct the shuttle diplomacy that may well have prevented war between the nuclear-armed nations of India and Pakistan. Powell also helped soothe tensions with China after its shoot-down of a U.S. spy plane. However, he lost almost every other battle. In one of his first statements, Powell declared that he would resume President Bill Clinton’s nuclear negotiations with North Korea—only to be told by Condoleezza Rice, Bush’s national security adviser, that he would do no such thing. He had to eat his words.

Whenever Powell tried to initiate any form of arms control, his undersecretary of state, John Bolton, who had been installed in the job as a spy for Cheney, did his best to sabotage the move. On the few occasions when Powell won a debate in the National Security Council, Cheney would go talk with Bush privately—and usually get the decision reversed.

By the middle of Bush’s first term, his counterparts in Europe—who had celebrated Powell’s appointment and spoke with him frequently—came to realize that his views, which they found agreeable, did not reflect the president’s views, and he lost his influence abroad. When Bush wanted to send a message on the Middle East, he sent Rice. When he dispatched an emissary to Western Europe to lobby for Iraqi debt cancellation, he sent James Baker, the Bush family’s longtime friend who had been his father’s secretary of state.

The war in Iraq might have served as Powell’s off-ramp to redemption but instead deepened his downslide to Nowheresville. As Bush crept toward the invasion, Powell warned him of its pitfalls—most prophetically on what he called “the Pottery Barn rule: you break it, you own it”—but to no avail. (Shortly before the war started, a European diplomat reminded him that Bush was said to sleep like a baby. Powell replied, “I sleep like a baby, too—every two hours, I wake up screaming.”) Once again, though, he was outmaneuvered. Unable to muster support for the invasion, either on the homefront or among allies, Cheney came up with the diabolical idea of having Powell—the one senior Bush official with international credibility—make the case for war before the U.N. Security Council. Initially, Powell resisted, tearing up the script the White House gave him to read. But then, in an effort to be helpful and loyal, he went to CIA headquarters and buried himself in documents and briefings for days on end, tossing out claims that had no support and leaving in those that seemed at least plausible. In the end, he gave his fateful speech, with passion. Many critics of the invasion were won over, in good part because it was Colin Powell making the case.

But all the claims that Powell was believed—all the evidence he recited to support the idea that Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction—turned out to be false as well. In his excellent book, To Start a War, Robert Draper wrote that plenty of CIA analysts could have told Powell that the claims were false, or at least dubious—but that CIA Director George Tenet, eager to please Bush with the conclusions Bush wanted to hear, deliberately kept Powell from talking with them.

Powell left the administration after Bush’s first term. Toward the end, he was portrayed in several journalistic accounts, most notably Bob Woodward’s Plan of Attack, as a critic of the war who regarded Cheney as having “the fever” for invasion; but, even a year after leaving his post, Powell stayed mum on these matters in public. As late as June 2005, six months into Bush’s second term, Powell went on The Daily Show With Jon Stewart in one of his first TV guest spots since leaving office. Stewart asked questions that left him wide openings to take jabs at his former colleagues, who were still in power, or at the war, which was still raging. But he took none of them. Sure, there were disagreements, Powell said, but that’s true in any administration. The president is the boss, and he’s a swell guy. Why, he and Laura were just over at his house for dinner the previous week.

Powell later openly regretted his role in the U.N. speech and denounced those who’d manipulated him at Langley. Too late. If he had resigned in protest before the invasion, he might have stopped the war from happening; if he had spoken out after leaving office, he might have affected its future course. But this wasn’t his way. He was, at heart, a team player, a “good soldier.”

Over time, he turned away from the Republican Party. In the 2008 presidential election, he endorsed Barack Obama, calling him a “transformational” candidate, to the great dismay of his old friend and Obama’s opponent, Sen. John McCain. However, Obama rarely called him for advice on defense issues. Powell subsequently endorsed only Democrats—Obama again in 2012, Hillary Clinton in 2016, and Joe Biden in 2020.

In recent years, apart from the endorsements, Powell remained out of the limelight of national politics—though it wasn’t clear whether this was by choice. He devoted most of his time to personal and public causes, especially the Colin Powell School for Civic and Global Leadership at his alma mater, the City College of New York. He wrote more bestselling books and spoke widely, sometimes for fees, sometimes not. He had a wonderful life. At one pivotal moment in our history, it could have been a more decisive one.

Israel Threatens Israel: Daniel 8:4

Tehran Iran
(Photo : Simon Inns / Flickr / CC) Tehran, Iran.

Iran Threatens To ‘Take Action’ Against 10K Jews In Country If Israel ‘Makes A Mistake’

Rising tensions between Iran and Israel has led Iranian Vice President Mohsen Rezaee to issue a stern warning towards its adversary: stay in line or let thousands of Jews inside the Iranian border perish.

The Iranian regime continues to accuse Israel of having a military presence within Iranian Azerbaijan, as per the “Iranian Regime Countdown” group that is opposed to Iranian leadership, posting the update on its Telegram channel.

According to the Middle East Media Research Institute, Rezaee, who serves as Iran’s Vice President for Economic Affairs, issued a warning that the country would take action against “the 10,000 Jews living in Iran” in the event Israel “makes a mistake” against the Iranians.

A translation of the Telegram channel post described Rezaee as an “unprecedented threat to Iran’s Jews” and reported that in a recent speech, the Iranian Vice President “told members and directors of [the ideological organization] Tharollah Tehran: ‘The Israeli government knows very well that if it makes a mistake, the regime will treat the 10,000 Jews living in Iran differently.”

The report added that leaders of the Islamic Republic of Iran have long threatened Israeli citizens and cities such as Tel Aviv and Haifa to confront their Israeli adversaries, but this is the first time that the Iranian official is threatening the Jews within their own borders, who have lived there for “thousands of years.” In the past, Rezaee threatened to kidnap 1,000 Americans and ask the U.S. for a $1 billion ransom for every American he took captive.

In June, an Iranian journalist in the U.S. by the name of Masih Alinejad took to Twitter to share a clip of then-presidential candidate Rezaee in an Iranian television broadcast promising to solve the economic crisis of Iran by taking a thousand Americans hostage and asking money from the U.S. in exchange for their freedom, WND reported.

In July, the U.S. Department of Justice admitted that four Iranian intelligence operatives who fled to Iran had in fact attempted to kidnap Alinejad from her New York residence and bring her to Iran. Alinejad was known to be campaigning online for women to remove their hijab, a violation of their faith.

Meanwhile, the representative of the Jews in the Majlis or council, Dr. Houmayoun Sameyah Najafabadi shared on his Telegram channel that Rezaee’s office had vehemently denied the Iranian Regime Countdown group’s claims that he wanted to take Jews hjostage.

“Recently, I have received many messages in the matter of the publication of an announcement by a senior regime official harming the Jewish community of Iran and creating concern in public opinion,” Dr. Najafabadi wrote. “After clarifying with the office of the honorable Dr. Mohsen Rezaee, he announced that this message was absolutely false and expressed regret for the publication of such a message that creates concern in the Jewish community of Iran.”

The spokesperson went on to call it “false news” that the anti-government group was spreading. He insisted that both the great founder of the revolution, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini and Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei that the religion of the Prophet Moses and the Jewish community differ from Zionism. He concluded that such “false news” was only published “to create division and tension among the Iranians.”

Readers are urged to pray for the Jews in Iran.

The Antichrist’s men will form the next Iraq government

Iraqis pass by a poster of Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr in Sadr City in Baghdad on October 17, 2021 (AFP/AHMAD AL-RUBAYE)

Who will form Iraq’s next government?

Mon, October 18, 2021, 8:13 PM

Iraq’s October 10 elections reinforced the parliamentary strength of mercurial Shiite preacher Moqtada Sadr and saw a sharp decline in that of his adversaries, the pro-Iran Hashed al-Shaabi alliance, according to preliminary results.

A final tally from the ballot, organised to appease youth-led anti-government protests that began in 2019, is expected in the next few weeks, but so far no bloc has a clear mandate.

That means the numerous political parties will engage in lengthy negotiations to form alliances and name a new prime minister.

– What alliances are possible? –

Harith Hasan, a nonresident senior fellow at the Carnegie Middle East Center, generally sees two main potential scenarios.

The first is the revival of a “Shiite alliance” between Sadr, who has criticised Iranian influence, and the Hashed, a former paramilitary network now integrated into the regular security forces.

Results so far show Sadr won more than 70 of the 329 parliamentary seats.

This coalition option would see Sadr accepting “a new power-sharing arrangement with a compromise candidate” as prime minister, Hasan said.

There would also be an agreement “on certain ‘principles’ for reform, including the future and the structure of Hashed al-Shaabi,” he said.

Any compromise candidate for prime minister will have to have the tacit blessing of Tehran and Washington, arch-foes that are both Baghdad allies.

According to preliminary results the Conquest (Fatah) Alliance, the political arm of the multi-party Hashed, emerged from the election with only around 15 seats in parliament.

In the last chamber it had 48, which made it the second largest bloc.

A source in Fatah told AFP that some of its leaders “suggested to a representative of the Sadrists to conclude an alliance” with them and other Shiite entities.

A second scenario would see Sadr align himself with Massoud Barzani, the longtime head of the Kurdistan Democratic Party which runs the Kurdish autonomous region in northern Iraq.

Mohammed al-Halbussi, the former parliamentary speaker who cultivates an image of dynamism and leads a construction boom in his home city of Ramadi, would also be part of this coalition, along with smaller groups.

This scenario is only possible if Sadr “did not succumb to the pressure” of Hashed, said Hasan, who does not exclude “some kind of chaos or armed conflict” in the country where virtually all political actors have links to armed groups.

Despite losing seats, the Hashed is still expected to carry weight in parliament through the support of members who say they are independent, and arrangements with former prime minister Nuri al-Maliki, who held the post between 2006 and 2014.

An ally of Hashed and a figure close to Iran, Maliki won more than 30 seats.

– Who will be prime minister?

No name has yet emerged as a replacement for Mustafa al-Kadhemi.

Sadr had claimed he was going to name the next prime minister, but the one ultimately chosen “has to be a consensus candidate,” said Lahib Higel, a senior analyst on Iraq at the International Crisis Group.

It could be Kadhemi himself.

Well connected both in Tehran and Washington, he brought forward the elections, originally scheduled for 2022, in response to the anti-government protests over endemic corruption, unemployment and failing public services.

With no base of his own and no seat in parliament, Kadhemi could be a convenient choice “because to a certain degree you will get rid of a part of the responsibility when the face of the government is someone else,” Higel said.

“He has a chance.”

In Hasan’s view, “Kadhemi still stands a good chance to stay in office.”

– What about Iran’s role?

The loss of seats by Fatah, which is very close to Iran, will not necessarily weaken Tehran’s role in Iraq.

“Iran has had an influence in Iraq ever since 2003,” years before the Hashed alliance first entered parliament in 2018, Higel said.

According to Hasan, Iran has three main interests in its neighbour: ending the US military presence which numbers 2,500, and making sure there are no threats coming from Iraq; supporting Hashed; and keeping the Iraqi market open to products from Iran’s crippled economy.

Hasan added that Iran “don’t see Sadr as an enemy, but they are attentive to the risk of having him dominating” the Shiite scene.

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The Russia and China nuclear horns threaten Japan: Daniel 7

A Chinese Navy Kunming-class destroyer sails near Japan on October 18, 2021. Photo: Japan Self-Defence Forces via Reuters

Chinese, Russian navies jointly traverse Japan strait regarded as high seas after military drill

Chinese and Russian vessels have for the first time jointly sailed through the Tsugaru Strait in between Japan’s Honshu and Hokkaido islandsThe strait is an international waterway due to a Cold War-era decision to allow US ships carrying nuclear weapons to pass through without violating Japan’s non-nuclear position

 in Tokyo+ FOLLOW

Published: 3:41pm, 19 Oct, 2021

The passage of 10 Chinese and Russian warships through a narrow strait in the north of Japan on Monday did not violate Japan’s territorial waters, but has exploited a loophole that’s set alarm bells ringing in Tokyo, according to analysts.

The fleet had been taking part in joint military drills in the Sea of Japan earlier this month, as the two navies have done in the past, but analysts say it will have been a calculated manoeuvre by Beijing and Moscow to subsequently route the warships through the Tsugaru Strait for the first time