Monday, February 28, 2011

Birth Pains:

4.7-magnitude quake hits central Arkansas

The latest earthquake was centered near Greenbrier , where much of the seismic activity has occurred in the past six months. The shaking was felt far and wide this time, though, as dozens of residents took to Facebook to query, "Did you feel it?"

If it is confirmed as a 4.7, the temblor would be the strongest of hundreds of earthquakes in Faulkner County since September.

Large crack opens the earth in southern Peru

The sudden appearance early in the morning of an enormous crack, measuring 100 meters wide and three kilometers long, caused confusion among residents of the Huacullani district in the Chucuito province, department of Puno.

The exact cause of the crack in the earth still unknown. Peru’s geophysical institute ruled out the occurrence of an earthquake in the region, but what is clear is that the ground opened up and large blocks of earth can be observed scattered throughout the area.

'Mega-mudslides' destroy homes in Bolivia

Heavy rains unleashed a "mega-mudslide" in Bolivia's capital that destroyed 400 homes, authorities said.

But the destruction in the usually dry capital was staggering with some neighborhoods virtually wiped away. House after house -- many made of adobe and some of brick -- simply collapsed.

"It is one of the worst disasters this city has seen in terms of the number of houses affected. It is a mega-mudslide, a massive disaster," he added.

Magnitude 5.7 quake hits Veracruz, Mexico

Other Quakes in the World:

6.0 Chile
4.5 Nicaragua
5.0 Tonga Islands
5.2 Crete
4.5 Afghanistan
5.0 Japan
4.6 Japan
4.4 Myanmar
4.3 Caucasus

Vancouver Island Bald Eagles Are "Falling From the Sky

​It was one thing when starlings, robins, and turtledoves were falling dead from the sky in places like Kentucky, Italy, and Arkansas. Those places are far from the Pacific Northwest, and the birds are just common species that no one cares about anyway. Well, now bizarre bird deaths have finally made their way to the PNW, and it's eagles that are falling from the sky. That's right, bald freaking eagles.



Russia to sell Syria cruise missiles

Israel furious at completion of deal, fearing advanced missiles will fall into Hezbollah's hands

"And this is understandable since Hezbollah has repeatedly used weapons that they received either from Lebanon or Syria."

The disputed sale is believed to be worth at least $300 million (218 million euros) and is meant to see Syria receive 72 cruise missiles in all.

Netanyahu wary of new international efforts in peace process

Over the weekend, the United Nations envoy to the Middle East, Robert Serry, announced that Quartet representatives would hold separate meetings with Israeli and Palestinian officials later in the week in Brussels.

However, Netanyahu has voiced his reservations to the meeting, fearing that by agreeing he would open the door to international influence on the terms of the renewed talks. Specifically, the premier is worried of being forced to resume talks toward a Palestinian state based on the 1967 borders.

The move spearheaded by Quartet members – Russia and the European Union, specifically – is another part of the intense international pressure brought to bare on Netanyahu in wake of the recent standstill in peace talks.

Farrakhan: Mideast uprisings will come to US

Nation of Islam leader Minister Louis Farrakhan predicted on Sunday that America faces imminent uprisings that mirror those in the Middle East.

“What you are looking at in Tunisia, in Egypt … Libya, in Bahrain … what you see happening there … you’d better prepare because it will be coming to your door,” Farrakhan said in a booming voice, thousands of followers cheering in his wake.

And last, this article describes the situation we face in the Middle East today:

Throughout New Middle East, Islamists Have Upper Hand

The new Middle East will favor the Muslim Brotherhood (MB). Their mosque-based clinics, feeding stations, and petty employment gave the MB many millions of foot soldiers, who occupied Liberation Square in Cairo and other such squares in different capitals in the Arab world from Algiers to Manama, Amman, Tripoli, and Sanaa.

The next chapter in Egypt’s history is yet to be written, but there is little doubt that the MB will be a major influence. Under the worst-case scenario, the MB would force the powers to be to immediately sever their relations with Israel, and perhaps with the U.S. as well.

Where Egypt (and the Middle East) is headed:

The delivery of gas to Israel would cease, and Egypt would ally itself with Iran. Such a government would also shut down the Suez Canal to Western navigation, causing great damage to the European economy. Domestically, an MB-influenced government would implement Sharia law as the law of the land, forcing the Coptic-Christian minority to flee the country, convert to Islam, or live in even greater misery and fear.

What about the other countries that we are following in the region?

In Jordan:

Jordan’s Palestinian majority has little access to power, and the people in the Palestinian refugee camps suffer from neglect and unemployment. Additionally, hundreds of thousands of Iraqi refugees, who flooded into Jordan in recent years, have increased the economic and social burdens on the Jordanian government.

The Muslim Brotherhood is by far the most popular movement in the kingdom, particularly among the Palestinians. King Abdullah II is aware of their dire situation, and understanding that he had to act immediately and decisively, dissolved his government two weeks ago and is seeking to improve basic services.

In Syria:

In the Syrian dictatorship of Bashar Assad, a member of the Malawian minority, the economic strife is even greater than in Jordan. In addition to the chronic unemployment and an influx of hundreds of thousands of Iraqis, the country has suffered from a severe drought in the past few years, forcing nearly a million farmers to abandon their lands and move into urban areas where they have joined the army of the unemployed. Like Jordan, the Sunni-Muslim majority is also allied with the Muslim Brotherhood

In Yemen:

The largely tribal Arab state of Yemen faces several fundamental problems like the corruption of President Abdullah Saleh, who was appointed by members of his tribe to run most of the state’s apparatus.
In northern Yemen, Shiite tribesmen are in an open violent rebellion against the Sanaa government, funded, trained, and supplied by Iran. President Saleh may be the next dictator to topple under pressure.


Lebanon is about to come under the full control of Hezbollah, and by extension become part of the Iranian sphere of influence.

Saudi Arabia:

Even in the seemingly stable kingdom of Saudi Arabia, pockets of instability threaten this Wahhabi-ruled state. In the eastern and Shiite province of Hasa, Iran has incited the populace, and in the southern province of Najran, whose Yemeni population feels discriminated against by the Saudi regime, trouble may be brewing.


Years of oppression and corruption along with the lack of democracy, civil and human rights, and religious freedom have awakened the sleeping giant that is the Arab street. The pent-up anger and frustration is as dangerous as lava from a volcano. Undoubtedly most of the dictatorships in the Middle East will be affected by this sweeping rage. But, without a democratic tradition and lacking a modern economic infrastructure, the new Middle East might be different but not better, and it might very well be replacing its secular oppressors with Islamist oppressors.

We are living in a world of turmoil. Not only turmoil politically in the Middle East, as more and more radical Islamic factions seek power and control, but the very earth itself seems to be experiencing birth pains, as we see earthquakes on the rise, floods, mudslides, tsunamis, drought, all leading to famine and now we see these mysterious, unexplained animal deaths occurring world-wide.

It seems that the world teeters just on the brink. On the brink of collapse. On the brink of a major turning point - one that seems to be coming soon.

While the world questions these events and recoils in terror and fear, we can rest assured in God's word: His word which has been given to us through the Holy Scriptures. And, of course, we have the written words of the prophets who described these times perfectly.

We know what is coming and we know our fate.

The apostle Paul characterized what our feelings should be in the face of looking towards our known fate:

"Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times and in every way. The Lord be with all of you."
(2 Thessalonians 3:16)



Anonymous said...

"U.S. officials have been pushing European countries to take the lead in world powers' response to Gadhafi, arguing that the Europeans have closer ties and more leverage. U.S. officials also want to limit military involvement in what could be a protracted civil war, coming at a time when U.S. forces are overstretched in Iraq and Afghanistan...'This is predominately a European problem, in the sense that they are the ones who have the most at stake,' said a senior U.S. official who spoke on condition of anonymity due to the sensitive diplomacy."


Thanks to Adamantine for the link.

Note: The 10-nation (full members) EU military organization, the Western European Union (WEU), comes to mind. Fwiw.

Anonymous said...

P.S. The WEU is also known as the Modified Brussels Treaty Powers.

Anonymous said...

From "News in Brief," top, right:


Buzek invites Pope to speak in Brussels
Today @ 17:43 CET

EU parliament president Jerzy Buzek has invited Pope Benedict XVI to come and speak at the assembly in Brussels. 'It was very important for me to see today's Europe from a different perspective, not only through the lens of a politician,' Buzek said in a statement after his trip to Rome on Monday."