A Lack Of Vigilance Before The Sixth Seal (Revelation 6:12)

       

Faults Underlying Exercise Vigilant GuardStory by: (Author NameStaff Sgt. Raymond Drumsta – 138th Public Affairs Detachment
Dated: Thu, Nov 5, 2009
This map illustrates the earthquake fault lines in Western New York. An earthquake in the region is a likely event, says University of Buffalo Professor Dr. Robert Jacobi.
TONAWANDA, NY — An earthquake in western New York, the scenario that Exercise Vigilant Guard is built around, is not that far-fetched, according to University of Buffalo geology professor Dr. Robert Jacobi.
When asked about earthquakes in the area, Jacobi pulls out a computer-generated state map, cross-hatched with diagonal lines representing geological faults.
The faults show that past earthquakes in the state were not random, and could occur again on the same fault systems, he said.
“In western New York, 6.5 magnitude earthquakes are possible,” he said.
This possibility underlies Exercise Vigilant Guard, a joint training opportunity for National Guard and emergency response organizations to build relationships with local, state, regional and federal partners against a variety of different homeland security threats including natural disasters and potential terrorist attacks.
The exercise was based on an earthquake scenario, and a rubble pile at the Spaulding Fibre site here was used to simulate a collapsed building. The scenario was chosen as a result of extensive consultations with the earthquake experts at the University of Buffalo’s Multidisciplinary Center for Earthquake Engineering Research (MCEER), said Brig. Gen. Mike Swezey, commander of 53rd Troop Command, who visited the site on Monday.
Earthquakes of up to 7 magnitude have occurred in the Northeastern part of the continent, and this scenario was calibrated on the magnitude 5.9 earthquake which occurred in Saguenay, Quebec in 1988, said Jacobi and Professor Andre Filiatrault, MCEER director.
“A 5.9 magnitude earthquake in this area is not an unrealistic scenario,” said Filiatrault.
Closer to home, a 1.9 magnitude earthquake occurred about 2.5 miles from the Spaulding Fibre site within the last decade, Jacobi said. He and other earthquake experts impaneled by the Atomic Energy Control Board of Canada in 1997 found that there’s a 40 percent chance of 6.5 magnitude earthquake occurring along the Clareden-Linden fault system, which lies about halfway between Buffalo and Rochester, Jacobi added.
Jacobi and Filiatrault said the soft soil of western New York, especially in part of downtown Buffalo, would amplify tremors, causing more damage.
“It’s like jello in a bowl,” said Jacobi.
The area’s old infrastructure is vulnerable because it was built without reinforcing steel, said Filiatrault. Damage to industrial areas could release hazardous materials, he added.
“You’ll have significant damage,” Filiatrault said.
Exercise Vigilant Guard involved an earthquake’s aftermath, including infrastructure damage, injuries, deaths, displaced citizens and hazardous material incidents. All this week, more than 1,300 National Guard troops and hundreds of local and regional emergency response professionals have been training at several sites in western New York to respond these types of incidents.
Jacobi called Exercise Vigilant Guard “important and illuminating.”
“I’m proud of the National Guard for organizing and carrying out such an excellent exercise,” he said.
Training concluded Thursday.

Three people killed and at least four injured outside the Temple Walls: Revelation 11

Israeli police and medics attend scene
Israeli police and medics at the scene of the attack in Elad on Thursday. Photograph: Ahmad Gharabli/AFP/Getty

Three people killed and at least four injured in attack in Israeli town of Elad

Israel launches hunt for suspects after two Palestinian suspects carrying axe and firearm attacked passersby

Bethan McKernan in JerusalemFri 6 May 2022 06.25 EDT

Three people have been killed and at least four more injured in the central Israeli town of Elad, in the latest in a spate of street attacks that have sent tensions soaring in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in recent weeks.

Israeli forces have launched a hunt for two Palestinian suspects, backed by a large deployment of security personnel, helicopters, drones and roadblocks. Police said the suspects were 19 and 20 years old and came from the town of Jenin in the occupied West Bank.

Medics described a horrific scene in Elad, an ultra-Orthodox town near Tel Aviv. Israeli media identified those killed as Yonatan Havakuk, Boaz Gol and Oren Ben Yiftah, three fathers in their 30s and 40s who together are survived by 16 children. Funerals will be held on Friday.

Police said the incident appeared to be a terror attack and Elad’s mayor called on residents to stay indoors during the hunt for the perpetrators.

Mourners light candles for victims of the attack in Dizengoff Street in central Tel Aviv

Late on Thursday the Israeli prime minister, Naftali Bennett, said: “We will get our hands on the terrorists and their supportive environment, and they will pay the price.”

Witnesses told Agence France-Presse that two assailants leapt from a car swinging axes at passersby. The injured included two people being treated for serious wounds, health officials said.

“The joy of Independence Day was cut short in an instant,” the Israeli foreign minister, Yair Lapid, posted on Twitter. “A murderous attack in Elad that shocks the heart and soul. We will not give in to terror.”

The Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, condemned the attack. The official Palestinian news agency, Wafa, quoted him as saying: “The killing of Palestinian and Israeli civilians will only lead to more deterioration of the situation.”

The US secretary of state, Antony Blinken, tweeted that the US “vehemently condemn[s] the terrorist attack in Israel today”.

Details on how the violence unfolded remained unclear but several Israeli media reports said the assailants carried knives or an axe, while other reports suggested they used firearms.

Paramedic Alon Rizkan, a first responder, described it as a “complex scene” and identified all the dead as men in their early 40s.

The majority of Elad’s 50,000 residents are members of Israel’s ultra-Orthodox community, hundreds of whom gathered in the attack area amid medical personnel and police.

The worst wave of terrorist attacks in Israel in years began in late March, when an Islamic State supporter killed four people in a stabbing and vehicle-ramming incident in the southern city of Beersheba.

Tensions then rose throughout the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, which coincided with the Jewish festival of Passover. Several separate attacks in Jerusalem and the occupied West Bank carried out by Palestinians and Palestinian citizens of Israel claiming to be from different factions have killed 16 Israelis, including an Arab-Israeli police officer and two Ukrainian nationals.

Three Arab-Israelis and 27 Palestinians have died during the same period, among them the perpetrators of attacks and others killed by Israeli security forces in stepped-up army operations in the occupied West Bank.

The deadly violence has been accompanied by clashes throughout Ramadan at the Aqsa mosque compound in Jerusalem between Palestinians and Israeli police, in which hundreds of Palestinians have been injured. The site, known as the Temple Mount in Israel, is holy to both Jews and Muslims, and lies at the geographical and religious heart of the decades-old conflict.

The compound’s reopening to Jewish visitors on Thursday morning, after the Eid al-Fitr holiday, was again marked by violent scuffles; after Israeli police moved to arrest one of the Palestinians protesting against the Jewish presence, scuffles broke out in which police fired rubber-coated bullets and Palestinians responded by throwing stones. Two Palestinians were taken to hospital and one police officer was lightly wounded, medics said.

The Palestinian militant group Hamas, which governs the Gaza Strip, praised Thursday’s attack in Elad but did not claim responsibility for it.

“The storming of al-Aqsa mosque can’t go unpunished,” Hamas spokesperson Hazem Qassem said. “The heroic operation in Tel Aviv is a practical translation of what the resistance had warned against.”

The escalation of violence in the past six weeks has raised fears of another armed conflict similar to the 11-day war a year ago between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip, which was in part triggered by unrest at Aqsa.

Informally, Jews are allowed to visit, but not pray at the site. In recent years, however, growing numbers of Jewish visitors, sometimes praying or with police escorts, have inflamed longstanding Palestinian fears that Israel plans to annex the area.

Israel says it is committed to maintaining the status quo, and accuses Hamas of inciting the recent violence.

With Reuters and Agence France-Presse

Antichrist Bets on Independent MPs for Forming Gov’t

Iraq’s Sadrist Movement, Coordination Framework Bet on Independent MPs for Forming Gov’t

Friday, 6 May, 2022 – 09:45

Sadrist Movement leader Muqtada al-Sadr, Asharq Al-Awsat

Baghdad – Asharq Al-Awsat

Sadrist Movement leader Muqtada al-Sadr concluded the forty-day deadline he granted his opponents (the Coordination Framework) to form the government, with a surprising tweet.

A day after the Coordination Framework announced an initiative to solve the political impasse in the country, seven months after holding “early” elections, throwing the ball into the court of the independents to form a government, Sadr announced his plan to form a government.

Sadr declared on Wednesday that the Coordination Framework had “failed” to form a government in the period they were provided, and called on the legislature’s 43 independent members, to form a government “within a maximum period of 15 days.”

“Independent deputies will, within two days, present their vision on the issue of the political impasse and the proposed initiatives,” independent MP Hussein Arbab, coordinator of the “Independent Iraq Alliance,” told Asharq Al-Awsat.

Arbab declined to comment on the independents’ position with either initiative presented by Sadr and the Coordination Framework.

However, he acknowledged the existence of “different views among independent representatives regarding the possibility of participating in the government and holding executive positions or not.”

For his part, Chairman of Iraq Advisory Council Farhad Alaaldin identified the categories of independents in the Iraqi parliament.

“Those who are truly independent are less than seven,” tweeted Alaaldin, adding that those who say they are independent but side with the Coordination Framework are at least ten.

Independent lawmakers influenced by Sadr are between seven and ten.

Between 24 and 30 independent lawmakers are either influenced or funded by some party or politician, added Alaaldin.

Given what has been mentioned, Alaaldin predicted the stalemate to last.

While the Coordination Framework’s initiative stipulated that everyone sit at one dialogue table, Sadr cut off any path to dialogue with his opponents and called on independent representatives to join his alliance and promised to give them more space to form a government.

Babylon the Great ‘preparing equally’ for world with or without Iran nuclear deal: Daniel 8

State Department spokesman Ned Price says the US is preparing equally for either scenario on Iran's nuclear deal. AFP
State Department spokesman Ned Price says the US is preparing equally for either scenario on Iran’s nuclear deal. AFP

US ‘preparing equally’ for world with or without Iran nuclear deal

JCPOA ‘very much an uncertain proposition’, says State Department spokesman Ned Price

The National

May 05, 2022

The US is preparing equally for both a return to compliance with Iran on a nuclear deal and a situation with no agreement being reached, the State Department said on Wednesday.

“Because a mutual return to compliance with the JCPOA is very much an uncertain proposition, we are now preparing equally for either scenario,” Department spokesman Ned Price said.

It comes as Iran’s clerical rulers say they are in no rush to revive a 2015 nuclear pact with world powers to ease sanctions on its energy-reliant economy, three officials told Reuters.

The country has been emboldened by an oil price surge since Russia invaded Ukraine.

Last year, Iran engaged in indirect talks with the US as a route to cancelling US sanctions that have gutted revenues and dramatically worsened economic hardships for ordinary people, stirring discontent.

But the talks have been on hold since March, chiefly over Iran’s insistence on Washington removing the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, Tehran’s elite security force, from the US Foreign Terrorist Organisation list.

While the ultimate aim is still to resurrect the deal and so have sanctions lifted, the Iranian officials said soaring oil prices had opened a window of opportunity for Iran by increasing revenues, giving the economy months of breathing space.

Failed talks ‘not the end of the world’

“Our nuclear programme is advancing as planned and time is on our side,” a senior Iranian official told Reuters, declining to be named.

“If the talks fail, it will not be the end of the world.”

The official said the fact Iran’s economy was not now so reliant on a revival of the deal would provide strong leverage for its negotiators if or when the talks resumed.

Iran’s foreign ministry, which handles the nuclear talks, did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Iran’s finances came under intense pressure in 2018 when then-US president Donald Trump ditched the nuclear pact between Iran and world powers, which was approved by his predecessor Barack Obama. Mr Trump reimposed sanctions that sharply cut the oil revenues that fund a sprawling Iranian state apparatus.

Saudi Arabia is Nuking Up: Daniel 7

Analysis: Riyadh may flood Pakistan with cash for nuclear technology transfer

Analysis: Riyadh may flood Pakistan with cash for nuclear technology transfer

May 5, 2022 – 8:57 AM News Code : 1254665 Source : Al Waght NewsLink:

Saudi Arabia, a country that over the past decade has been giving away its petrodollars to the other Muslim countries to advance its plans in the region, is now focusing on the new Pakistani government. Shahbaz Sharif who recently assumed the prime minister post in Islamabad chose Riyadh his first foreign destination as a PM hoping that he persuades the Saudis for fundings to his country.

AhlulBayt News Agency (ABNA): Saudi Arabia, a country that over the past decade has been giving away its petrodollars to the other Muslim countries to advance its plans in the region, is now focusing on the new Pakistani government. Shahbaz Sharif who recently assumed the prime minister post in Islamabad chose Riyadh his first foreign destination as a PM hoping that he persuades the Saudis for fundings to his country. 

According to Pakistani government officials, during Shahbaz’s visit to Riyadh, the country suggested to the Saudi officials doubling of oil purchase financing from $1.2 billion to $2.4 billion. Saudi Arabia agreed, they said. Therefore, Pakistan will receive a financing package worth about $8 billion from the oil-wealthy kingdom, which includes doubling the finances related to the purchase of oil from this country, receiving more money through bonds or Islamic sukuk and transferring the existing $4.2 billion in finances during Sharif’s trip to Riyadh. 

The Pakistani PM may set hopes on the Saudi giveaways to inject new life into his government, the Saudis in the past, too, made financial aids promises to his predecessors but declined to fulfill much of them. 

During a visit to Riyadh by former Pakistani PM Imran Khan, the Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman agreed to invest billions of dollars in Pakistan and release thousands of Pakistanis imprisoned in the kingdom, but he did not keep his promises. The Saudis make huge aids promises to the Pakistanis but in practice do nothing for Islamabad benefit.

The Saudis have always shown that they invest on governments that are relatively politically-stable, but in Pakistan the government changes every few years following a stealth coup, and the short life of these governments does not allow them to benefit from the Saudis. The new government, which came to power with a narrow margin of votes of the members of parliament, sees its political future shaky. Actually, the Saudis do not bet on an already losing horse, and this time, too, agreeing to the multi-billion aid package will not go beyond simple words. 

The Saudis always make demands from other countries in return for fundings. In recent years, Pakistan cozied up to Iran and Turkey, thus worrying Saudi Arabia, a rival to both countries. Riyadh always looks at Islamabad as a balance maker in relation to Tehran and tries to keep it away from Iran and bring it to its camp. The Saudis have badly suffered in Yemen war and blame Iran for their losses not just in Yemen but across the region. Riyadh is pushing for a regional alliance against Iran and is trying to bring Pakistan face to face with Iran through aid promises. Whereas the Saudis in the past months walked a path of de-escalation with Iran, they have always had on their table the choice of destabilizing the Iranian eastern borders. With takfiri factions active on the Pakistani and Afghanistani soil, Riyadh has in the back of its head bolstering terrorist cells on the Iranian borders.

Also, by the Western exit from Afghanistan, the Saudis are trying to fill their security vacuum in the region. They seek a toehold in Afghanistan through Pakistan for a role in Afghan developments. 

Using Pakistan nuclear experiences 

The Arab monarchy is eyeing use of technology and experiences of Pakistan, a nuclear state, for development of its nuclear power plants. In recent years, the Saudis have sought to build nuclear power plants under the pretext that Iran is building a nuclear bomb, and have asked Western countries for help. In 2018, bin Salman announced that if Iran acquired a nuclear bomb, Saudi Arabia would follow suit at the same speed, and such statements show that the Saudis are seriously pursuing a nuclear program. Repeated claims by the West that Iran is only one step away from building a nuclear weapon could lead the Saudis to the point where they think they must go nuclear in order to confront Iran.

Worried about a nuclear Saudi Arabia with a bomb, the West has so far not responded to the Saudi calls affirmatively. The source of the Western worry about a nuclear Saudi Arabia is Riyadh’s behavior in the region that includes waging war on Yemen and backing terrorist organizations in Syria and Iraq.

The Western ignorance of Saudi nuclear demands is frustrating to Riyadh and that is why it is heading to Pakistan, which it finds a suitable choice to respond to its nuclear ambitions. To that end, Riyadh took the initial steps, and last year sent a team of researchers in nuclear and renewable energy to Pakistan to see courses at Pakistani nuclear institutions. It is also said that Saudi Arabia intends to inject new funding into Pakistan’s military industry in exchange for further nuclear assistance. 

Intermittent tensions between Washington and Riyadh in recent years and American opposition to the Saudi nuclear ambitions on the one hand and Riyadh’s feeling of a need to check the Iranian policies in the region on the other hand are expected to shore up Pakistan-Saudi Arabia nuclear cooperation in the future, causing new challenges to the region and Saudi relations with the West.

Russia Simulates Nuclear Strikes Near European Horns: Daniel 7

Screen grab is a missile fired by a Russian Army Iskander tactical missile system during the special military operation in Ukraine.Russian Defense Ministry/TASS

Russia Simulates Nuclear Strikes Near EU

Russia said Wednesday its forces had carried out simulated nuclear missile strikes in the western enclave of Kaliningrad on the border with the European Union.

The announcement came on the 70th day of Moscow’s military action in the pro-Western country, with thousands killed and more than 13 million displaced.

After sending troops to Ukraine in late February, Russian President Vladimir Putin has made thinly veiled threats about Russia’s willingness to deploy tactical nuclear weapons.

During Wednesday’s war games, Russia practiced “electronic launches” of nuclear-capable Iskander mobile ballistic missile systems near Russia’s borders with EU-members Lithuania and Poland, the defense ministry said in a statement.

The Russian forces practiced single and multiple strikes at targets imitating missile systems, airfields, defended infrastructure, military equipment and command posts, according to the statement.

The units involved also practiced “actions in conditions of radiation and chemical contamination.”

More than 100 servicemen took part in the drills.

Russia placed nuclear forces on high alert shortly after the start of the invasion of Ukraine.

Putin has warned of a “lightning fast” retaliation if the West directly intervenes in the Ukraine conflict.

In recent days, Russian state-owned media has attempted to make the use of nuclear weapons more palatable to the public.

“For two weeks now, we have been hearing from our television screens that nuclear silos should be opened,” Russian newspaper editor and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Dmitry Muratov said Tuesday.

Hamas warns Israel ‘playing with fire’: Revelation 11

Hamas warns Israel ‘playing with fire’ as Temple Mount groups plan Thursday visit

Jewish groups vow to ascend to holy site on Israel’s Independence Day, waving Israeli flags and singing national anthem; Hamas officials said to arrive in Moscow for talks

By AARON BOXERMAN4 May 2022, 1:21 pm  

Palestinians chant slogans and wave Hamas flags after Friday prayers at Al-Aqsa Mosque during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, hours after Israeli police clashed with protesters at the Temple Mount compound in Jerusalem’s Old City, April 22, 2022. (AP Photo/Mahmoud Illean)

The Hamas terror group warned Israel against allowing Jewish visitors to enter the flashpoint Temple Mount site on Thursday after some right-wing groups planned to visit the sacred hilltop on Independence Day.

“The Zionist occupation authorities’ allowing flocks of settlers to storm the courtyards of the blessed Al-Aqsa Mosque on Thursday is playing with fire and drags the region into an escalation for which the occupation will bear full responsibility,” Hamas said in a statement on Wednesday afternoon.

Nationalist Israeli groups are planning to ascend to the Temple Mount, Judaism’s holiest site, for the first time since Passover. The hilltop also contains the Al-Aqsa Mosque, the third-holiest site in Islam, making it a deeply contested flashpoint between Arabs and Jews.

The Jewish groups say they plan to wave the Israeli flag and sing Israel’s national anthem at the holy site in celebration of Independence Day, which falls on Thursday.

“This Independence Day begins in blue and white on the Temple Mount!” declared BeYadeynu, a right-wing group that promotes Jewish worship at the site.

Under the fragile status quo on the Temple Mount, only Muslims are permitted to worship. Non-Muslim visitors are allowed to visit at specific dates and times, and Israeli police have detained Jews openly praying at the scene in the past.

An Israeli police officer stands guard as a Jewish group walks near the Dome of the Rock Mosque atop the Temple Mount on Tisha B’Av (the ninth of Av), a day of fasting commemorating the destruction of the ancient Temples, in the Old City of Jerusalem, Sunday, July 18, 2021. (AP Photo/Mahmoud Illean)

The Israeli government has repeatedly said it is committed to the status quo. But footage of police turning a blind eye to Jewish worshipers has repeatedly cropped up in recent years, angering Muslims.

Palestinians and Israeli forces have clashed repeatedly at the Temple Mount over the past few weeks. The violence echoed scenes from last year, when rioting helped spark a war between Israel and Gaza-based terror groups led by Hamas.

Ever since the May war, Hamas has threatened to fire rockets at Israel if it violated the organization’s “red lines” in Jerusalem. The terror group has hailed its “deterrence” against Israel in the contested capital as a key achievement of the war, which wrought widespread destruction in Gaza.

Hamas’s Gaza leader, Yahya Sinwar, said on Saturday the terror group “will not hesitate to take any steps” if Israel “violates” the Al-Aqsa Mosque.

“Our people must prepare for a great battle if the occupation does not cease its aggression against the Al-Aqsa Mosque,” Sinwar said.

Separately, Gaza media close to the terror group reported that a Hamas delegation visited Moscow and met with senior Russian officials on Wednesday morning.

According to the Hamas-linked Safa news site, deputy Hamas chief Moussa Abu Marzouk led a delegation of senior members to the Russian capital. They and the Russian officials will discuss “the situation in Jerusalem and bilateral relations between Hamas and Russia,” Safa reported.

Ties between Russia and Israel have become increasingly strained in recent days. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has accused Jerusalem of backing a “neo-Nazi regime” in Ukraine and compared Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, right, and Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid enter a hall for talks in Moscow, Russia, Thursday, Sept. 9, 2021. (Alexander Nemenov/Pool Photo via AP)

“So what if Zelensky is Jewish? The fact does not negate the Nazi elements in Ukraine. I believe that Hitler also had Jewish blood,” Lavrov said, invoking a conspiracy theory widely debunked by historians of Nazi Germany.

After heavy criticism from Israeli officials, the Russian Foreign Ministry doubled down, implicitly comparing Israel with the Judenrat councils, which cooperated with the Nazi regime during the Holocaust.

Hamas has seen its relationship with Russia improve in recent years. Last month, Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh held a rare phone call with Lavrov to discuss “the political efforts to stop the Israeli violations of the Al-Aqsa Mosque,” according to Haniyeh’s office.