Jesus saw this coming and He warned us that the end of this generation would witness not only warfare, but a time in which rumors of war, or the threat of war would be noteworthy and indeed we see this almost daily. Today we see Hezbollah's extensive and recent war preparations:
On both sides of the Israel-Lebanon border, the IDF and Hezbollah are quietly and intensively preparing for the next clash between them, a conflict both expect will surpass previous wars, in the scope of firepower each side will seek to employ.
The IDF’s 300th Infantry Brigade is based in what is known in the army as the Western Sector of the Lebanese border.
Senior commanders in the brigade told The Jerusalem Post this week that the quiet reigning over the frontier is highly deceptive.
In the midst of the green mountains and pastoral Shi’ite villages of southern Lebanon, Hezbollah is installing the most serious conventional threat to Israeli security, planting tens of thousands of rockets in civilian homes, digging underground bunkers for command and control centers, and plotting cross-border attacks.
“Hezbollah is carrying out massive preparations,” a senior source from the 300th Brigade said in recent days. “They’re focused in civilian Shi’ite villages. They know we won’t just attack the villages for no reason. Hezbollah members come to the border too, but without their uniforms.
They arrive in the form of shepherds, farmers, and hunters.”
“Hezbollah has the operational capabilities to attack now. When it will do so remains to be seen,”the source added. “This might end up being something we haven’t experienced. The threat exists from the air, sea and ground, as well as underground tunnels.
The White House is omitting key facts about the nuclear deal signed with Iran, which makes a number of important concessions to the Islamic Republic, The Washington Postargued in its editorial Friday.
Sunday’s accord is a six-month agreement with an option to extend, meant to limit the Iranian nuclear program as the P5+1 – the US, UK, Russia, China, France and Germany – try to hammer out a comprehensive accord with Iran. In return, Iran received some sanctions relief.
While Iran has agreed to cap uranium enrichment and delay completion of the Arak heavy-water reactor during the interim, six-month negotiation period, the text of the deal says that the final agreement will involve "a mutually defined enrichment program with mutually agreed parameters.”
In other words, according to the Post's Editorial Board, "the United States and its partners have already agreed that Iranian enrichment activity will continue indefinitely. In contrast, a long-standing US demand that an underground enrichment facility be closed is not mentioned."
According to the editorial, the most troubling aspect of the Geneva interim deal is that it provides for a "sunset clause" in the comprehensive agreement, meaning even the long-term deal would not be finite, and Iran could return to uranium enrichment and plutonium production at some point in the future after sanctions have been removed.
How "long-term" the final agreement will be is a point of contention, with Iran proposing a period as short as 3-5 years before it is able to have an "unrestricted nuclear program
Melding the Hanukkah holiday and foreign affairs, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu solemnly vowed to serve as a “light unto the nations” and act against Iran’s nuclear program should diplomacy fail Thursday night.
Speaking at the Western Wall for a Hanukkah candle-lighting ceremony, Netanyahu compared Iran’s nuclear program to a darkness that would be forced out by Israel, referencing a popular children’s song for the holiday.
“We came to drive out the darkness, and the largest darkness that threatens the world today is a nuclear Iran,” he said. “We are bound to do all we can to prevent this darkness. If possible we will do this diplomatically, if not we will act as ‘a light unto the nations’.”
“Israel extends its hand in peace to all its neighbors. But we have learned from bitter experience to beware of tyrants. Tyranny has no message for the future. It offers dark nights instead of enlightened days. The real promise of progress lies in the employment of science and technology by a society which seeks justice and peace,” said Peres.
A powerful earthquake has hit Iran, killing seven and injuring a further 45, IRNA state news agency reported. The disaster's epicenter was in an area 62km north east of Bushehr, according to the USGS, where Iran has its only nuclear power plant.
The head of Iran's Crisis Management organization, Hassan Qadami, confirmed the initial 30 casualties to IRNA. However, Bushehr's Governor, Fereydoon Hasanvand, updated the figure to 45 on Thursday night. He added that 'total calm' had settled in the area.
Fars news agency placed the death toll higher, at eight, adding that helicopters would be posted to the area on Friday to assess the extent of the damage.
"There were some houses and electricity poles damaged. Rescue teams have been dispatched," local governor Alireza Khorani told Fars before full news of the wounded emerged.
Tremors were registered at a depth of 16.4 kilometers and some 14 kilometers from the nearest city of Borazjan in Bushehr Province.
While USGS measured the quake at 5.6, the local Seismological Center of Tehran University’s Geophysics Institute has said that the earthquake measured 5.7 on the Richter scale.
Social media pages in Saudi Arabia have said that tremors from the quake were felt in the kingdom's eastern province, across the Gulf from Iran, Reuters reported. No damage to the nuclear plant in nearby Bushehr has been reported.
The state news agency is reporting that China has sent warplanes into its newly declared maritime air defense zone.