Arab capitals braced for violence as unrest spreads
Arab capitals are expecting further violent clashes after the killing of three demonstrators in the Gulf state of Bahrain, and the reported death of 15 people in violence in Libya, threatened an escalation of regional unrest in the wake of the popular uprisings in Egypt and Tunisia.
Fresh protests are expectedon Friday after Friday prayers in Manama, the capital of Bahrain, in Cairo (in celebration of Hosni Mubarak's departure a week ago), and in Sana'a, capital of the Yemen, and perhaps elsewhere.
Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states signalled their alarm at the unprecedented regional unrest at a meeting of foreign ministers held in Manama.
The sectarian aspect of Bahrain's violence could add to discontent among the Shia minority in oil-producing areas of east Saudi Arabia, which is linked to the island state by a 15-mile causeway.
These uprisings are spreading, and unfortunately, they are spreading throughout the more moderate regions.
Arab world tense ahead of Friday prayers
Violence in Iran, Libya, Bahrain, and Yemen expected to reach new heights after sermons
The Arab world prepared Thursday evening for a tense day of prayer Friday, after anti-government protests in Iran, Libya, Bahrain, and Yemen claimed a number of lives.
The foreign ministers were concerned over Iran's apparent involvement in the protests, which were mainly organized by Shiites.
In Egypt, Yusuf al-Qaradawi, one of the most honored Sunni theologians and unofficial spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, plans to deliver a Friday sermon at Tahrir Square, where popular anti-government rallies centered in Cairo.
So, is this the beginning of the Muslim Brotherhood making its move? Just yesterday we saw reports that described their efforts to form a formal political party and now this.
It is also interesting to see Iran back in the picture. Again.
Iran roils Bahrain to stir Saudi, Gulf Shiite revolts, executes own protesters
Tanks rolled into Pearl Square, Manama, early Thursday, Feb. 17, personally commanded by King Sheikh Hamad bin Isa Al-Khalifa in full military regalia, hours after his police firing live ammunition and tear gas failed to break up the tent city set up by protesters against his rule.
At least four protesters were killed and dozens injured.
Al-Khalifa has two major difficulties to crack: For the first time, the king's biggest Shiite party, al-Wefaq has joined up with all 10 opposition parties to coordinate their protest action.
But the Bahraini ruler's most acute problem is that while the Arabic and world media lump the protest movement in his kingdom with the pro-democracy uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt, it is not the same in that it does not just represent genuine people power fighting an autocratic regime for reforms, but is fomented from Tehran.
Iran's objective is to overthrow the Al-Khalifa regime and replace it with the first pro-Iranian government in the Arabian Gulf region. A Shiite regime in Manama will stir the Shiite minorities to revolt in other oil-rich Gulf states - and especially in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, where they make up around one-fifth of the population.
Iran is behind much of what we are seeing in the Middle East. Ranging from attempts to capitalize on general uprisings (Egypt, Iraq) or directly intervening in the affairs of the state (Lebanon, Syria, Turkey, and now Bahrain,), Iran's tentacles are far reaching.
And their influence on these various countries is for one purpose and one purpose only: to destroy Israel.
They are growing their power base from which to invade - Turkey and Russia are already in a tight alliance with Iran, and now we are seeing further growth of this anti-Israeli alliance.
As mentioned before - we know where this is all headed, and we know the final outcome. But watching the pieces of this puzzle being assembled is fascinating.
We are literally watching God's final plans for the Church and the Nation of Israel (and for the world, for that matter) evolve as we watch.
And so far, everything is going exactly according to plan - the plan so well described in the prophetic scriptures.