As stated in Matthew 24, we will see wars and rumors of war. Iran and Russia continue to strengthen their military alliance while continuing the arms build-up in obvious preparations for war. Unfortunately, we know that Israel will ultimately serve as the focus of this arms build-up:
Iran has built a 27-meter-long missile, capable of delivering a warhead “far beyond Europe,” and placed it on a launch pad at a site close to Tehran, an Israeli television report said Wednesday, showing what it said were the first satellite images of the missile ever seen in the West.
It stressed that the missile could be used to launch spacecraft or satellites, but also to carry warheads.
The Channel 2 news report showed satellite imagery documenting what it said was Iran’s “very rapid progress” on long-range missile manufacture.
It showed one photograph of a site near Tehran, which it said the West had known about for two years, where Iran was working on engines for its long-range missiles.
The TV report said the satellite images were taken by the Eros B commercial Earth observation satellite, which was designed and manufactured by Israel Aircraft Industries, launched in 2006, and is owned by the Israeli firm ImageSat International.
Sophisticated Russian S-400 Missiles For Iran Under New Military Pact, S-300s For Egypt, Syria, Hezbollah
The cash-strapped Russians have become less choosy these days about clients for their prized S-300 defensive systems and even more advanced S-400 missiles. They are now ready to sell the former - not just to Iran, but also to Egypt, Syria and the Lebanese Shiite Hizballah.
Iran won this breakthrough with the signing of a new military cooperation pact in Tehran Tuesday, Jan. 20, between Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu and his Iranian counterpart Brig. Gen. Hossein Dehqan.
“The two countries have decided to settle the S-300s problem," the Iranian defense ministry said, while Col. Gen. Leonid Ivashov, a former ministry official, added: "A step was taken in the direction of cooperation on the economy and arms technology, at least for such defensive systems as the S-300 and S-400. Probably we will deliver them."
The S-300 has been a bone of contention between Moscow and Tehran since 2007, when Russia contracted to sell Iran the S-300 missile system, for which Tehran paid $800 m, and never delivered because of strong objections by United States and Israel.
Today, both Iran and Russia are under Western sanctions and willing to help each other impede US Middle East interventions. President Obama is leaning hard on Europe to withhold arms and weapons systems from the Russian army, to punish President Vladimir Putin for his actions in Ukraine and his annexation of Crimea.
Until now, the Russians were wary of burning all their bridges to the US administration and sidestepped outright confrontation with Washington by keeping open controlled exit hatches, in case an opening for a fresh start presented itself.
One such hatch served to set Russia and the United States on the same side of the table in the six-power nuclear talks with Iran.
However, as the prospect receded of further let-ups in the frozen relations between Presidents Obama and Putin, Moscow began shutting those exits down.
Five months ago, Moscow signed a huge $3.5 bn arms deal with Egypt, financed by Saudi Arabia. This closed the Egyptian military market to the US munitions industry.
With its cooperation pact of Jan. 20, Russia became the Iranian armed forces’ primary supplier of new and sophisticated weapons systems,up to and including S-400 missiles - in defiance of the arms embargo against the Islamic Republic and US policies at large.
Iran's Defense Minister Hossein Dehghan, in particular, stood up and urged greater cooperation as a means of opposing American ambitions in the region. "Iran and Russia are able to confront the expansionist intervention and greed of the United States through cooperation, synergy and activating strategic potential capacities," Dehghan said. "As two neighbors, Iran and Russia have common viewpoints toward political, regional and global issues."
He said that the new agreement includes expanded counter-terrorism cooperation, exchanges of military personnel for training purposes and an understanding for each country's navy to more frequently use the other's ports. They already cooperate in supporting Syria's Bashar Assad.
A larger global currency shift is underway…
And it may be happening much more quickly than anyone has realized.
Things are definitely in motion. Call it a game of musical chairs, or an exercise in rearranging chairs on the Titanic, or just that a tilting balance of power. Just don’t make the mistake of thinking this is all routine.
The absolutely stunning decision by the Swiss National Bank to decouple from the euro has triggered billions of dollars worth of losses all over the globe.[...]And these are just the losses that we know about so far. It will be many months before the full scope of the financial devastation caused by the Swiss National Bank is fully revealed. But of course the same thing could be said about the crash in the price of oil that we have witnessed in recent weeks. These two “black swan events” have set financial dominoes in motion all over the globe. At this point we can only guess how bad the financial devastation will ultimately be.
The key to understanding how the hammer will fall may lie in: gold.
In the material world that governs politics and economics, there has always been one golden rule: he who has the gold makes the rules.
Put China at the top of the next generation of rule makers, then.
China has been quietly stockpiling gold for years now. In fact, it is stockpiling so much gold that many have speculated that it may be building a gold-backed yuan currency that would make the Dollar pale in comparison on the global market.
Bottom line: no one knows just exactly how much gold China has amassed:
Buying surreptitiously allows Beijing to buy bullion at bargain prices; if the world knew how much gold China was really amassing, a run on gold the likes of which the globe has never seen would likely ensue. “We believe China is controlling the gold price because it is buying in such a way so as not to push prices up.” That’s the opinion of respected precious-metals analyst Julian Phillips of The Gold Forecaster, along with a host of other informed sources. (source)It is widely believed that China has accumulated larger – possibly much larger – reserves since. (source)
Lots of other countries are rapidly buying up gold, too, including – Serbia, Greece, Ecuador, Mexico, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan.
But reportedly no one is buying gold at a faster pace than Russia.
Russia’s increase is the most dramatic, according to the recent report from the IMF. The Russian central bank has almost doubled its gold holdings within the last 5 years to 1,094.8 tonnes in June of this year. China’s Central Bank followed with an increase of 75% from its holdings in 2009.
The country has tripled its gold reserves since 2005 and is holding the most since at least 1993, IMF data show.
There is little doubt that gold plays a major factor in Russia’s posturing during a global showdown that involves proxy war and military tensions in the Ukraine, Syria, Iraq and other parts of the globe.
Moscow’s purchase of bullion and the assault on the bank can be seen as tactics of a single strategy designed to break the monopoly of the dollar. Gold is Russia’s hedge against that hegemony; it can’t be hacked.
More than that, Putin has been positioning his motherland to team up with China to solidify the emerging BRICS system which aims to thwart decades of Anglo financial dominance with a un-dollar currency system that will also include a development bank.
Russia’s response has been to buy gold and turn east, cementing deals with China and, it would seem, firing the opening salvos in a cyber currency war with the U.S. (source)
Warnings have sounded about a tipping of the global balance:
With Russia now in what appears to be a currency war with the U.S., they may find a willing partner in China to create an alternative international financial system that does not rely upon or use the dollar. Irrespective of either country’s intentions, their physical gold buying sprees continue unabated.