Tuesday, July 30, 2013

War

My Way News - Pentagon: Afghan forces will need help beyond 2014
My Way News reports: "The Pentagon said Tuesday it is offering no 'zero option' for the number of troops that would remain in Afghanistan after the U.S. combat mission ends in December 2014. It said in a report to Congress that 'substantial' long-term military support will be needed to ensure that Afghans can hold off the Taliban insurgency."

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Monday, July 29, 2013

Covenant With Many

My Way News - Israel, Palestinians resuming talks after 5 years
My Way News reports: "Israeli and Palestinian teams flew to Washington on Monday to end five years of diplomatic stalemate and prepare for a new round of Mideast peace talks, though optimism was in short supply after two decades of failed attempts to reach a deal."

My Way News - Analysis: Mideast peace deal seems far off
My Way News reports: "The contours of Israeli-Palestinian peace are clear, experts say: If only the sides summon up the will, the inevitable outcome is two states roughly along the pre-1967 borders, with Jerusalem as a shared capital and a finessing of the Palestinian refugee issue. The notion of a virtually preordained eventual result has been around for decades."

Comment: The press is both hyping the peace talks and also underscoring how unlikely a deal is.  Still, the press has it's moments. For example, can you spot the factual error in this AP photo caption?  Pretty glaring mistake, but it points to the problem of the depth of historical baggage that the peace talks have to deal with.

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Friday, July 26, 2013

Covenant With Many

My Way News - Israelis, Palestinians to US next week for talks
My Way News reports: "An Israeli and a Palestinian official say preliminary peace talks agreed to after a shuttle mission by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry are to begin in Washington on Tuesday. Israeli-Palestinian talks on the terms of a Palestinian state have been frozen for five years, and both sides have low expectations of the new U.S. peace push."

Comment: This seems to be a tactical move on the part of the Obama team to lower expectations while working forcefully behind the scenes to move the process along. Given the enormous concessions they expect from Israel and almost nothing at all asked of the Palestinians, this is not a welcome development. 

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Thursday, July 25, 2013

Nations in Distress

My Way News - Egypt braces for day of rival rallies
My Way News reports: "Political allies of Egypt's military lined up behind its call for huge rallies Friday to show support for the country's top general, pushing toward a collision with Islamist opponents demanding the return of the nation's ousted president. [...] Islamists also plan pro-Morsi rallies on Friday, raising the possibility of street clashes, as has happened repeatedly in recent weeks."

My Way News - Officials: Cafe bombings, attacks kill 42 in Iraq
My Way News reports: "Emboldened militants in Iraq set up their own checkpoint to kill drivers and bombed crowded cafes Thursday in the deadliest of a series of attacks that killed at least 42 people, authorities said. More than 550 people have been killed in violent attacks so far this month, according to an Associated Press count, as violence continues during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan."

My Way News - UN: More 100,000 now dead in Syria's civil war
My Way News reports: "The number of dead in Syria's civil war has passed 100,000, the U.N. chief said Thursday, calling for urgent talks on ending 2 1/2 years of violence even as President Bashar Assad's government blasted the United States as an unsuitable peace broker. In the latest example of the relentless carnage, a car bomb killed at least 10 people and wounded 66 in a pro-regime, residential area near the capital."

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Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Jerusalem Security

My Way News - Iran denounces EU Hezbollah blacklisting
My Way News reports: "Iran says the European Union's decision to blacklist the military wing of Lebanon's Hezbollah was 'strange' and 'uncalculated.' Foreign ministry spokesman Abbas Araghchi told a news conference in Tehran Tuesday that the decision by the EU to place the Shiite militant group on its terror list serves Israel's interests and will only complicate the situation in the Middle East."

Comment: I guess we knew that was coming.  At least Iran knows that financial and military assistance to Hezbollah will be under much greater scrutiny.

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Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Jerusalem Security

My Way News - EU declares Hezbollah's military wing terror group
My Way News reports: "The European Union placed the military wing of Hezbollah, the Lebanese Shiite militant group and political party, on its terror list Monday in a major policy change toward the Middle East. [...] The action came after prolonged diplomatic pressure from the United States, the Netherlands and Israel, which consider Hezbollah a terrorist organization. [...] Israel also welcomed the European decision. It fought a bitter monthlong war with Hezbollah in 2006, and has accused Hezbollah of carrying out attacks on Jewish and Israeli targets around the world."

Comment: Hezbollah is also a major Iranian proxy, it will be interesting to see how Tehran reacts. 

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Mark of the Beast

dvice.com - New payment system could let you buy groceries with your face
DVICE reports: "Uniqul, a company based out of Finland, is getting ready to release a new payment system that uses facial recognition. Instead of using a credit card to make purchases, this new facial recognition software, which is linked to a customer's bank account, will allow you to pay for your groceries by gazing into a camera. Not only will this speed up the often unbearably long lines at the supermarket, but it could also be more secure than any other payment system currently available."

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Monday, July 22, 2013

Covenant With Many

My Way News - Israel premier fast-tracking peace referendum bill
My Way News reports: "Israel's premier announced Monday he is fast-tracking legislation that would allow him to put any peace deal with the Palestinians to a national referendum - an apparent attempt to silence hard-liners in his party and coalition government. [...] Polls have suggested a majority of Israelis support the establishment of a Palestinian state alongside Israel, but many groups are vehemently opposed, including hard-liners among Israel's West Bank settlers. Some issues to be settled in a peace deal are particularly explosive, including a partition of Jerusalem, home to major religious shrines and claimed by both sides as a capital."

My Way News - Analysis: Resumption of Mideast talks not assured
My Way News reports: "Disagreements that blocked Israeli-Palestinian negotiations for the past five years have not been fully resolved, despite U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry's recent announcement of progress, and there's no clear path to a resumption of talks."

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Friday, July 19, 2013

Covenant With Many

My Way News - Kerry wins step to resuming Mideast peace talks
My Way News reports: "After a rush of last-minute talks with Palestinian officials, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry sealed a step toward relaunching the long-halted Mideast peace process, announcing Friday that Israel and the Palestinians had agreed on a basis for returning to negotiations."

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Thursday, July 18, 2013

Mark Update

Jerusalem Post - Amidst controversy, biometric database is launched
The Jerusalem Post reports: "After years of debate and controversy, the Interior Ministry launched a pilot program of its biometric database, inviting residents to sign up for the new identification card at the ministry office in Rishon Lezion. [...] The biometric database program was first approved by the Knesset in 2009, and in June 2011 the Knesset Science and Technology Committee approved the ordinances needed to establish the database."

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Wednesday, July 17, 2013

King of the North

My Way News - Putin says war games show Russia's military power
My Way News reports: "President Vladimir Putin said Wednesday that Russia can be proud of its military, which has shown a 'high degree' of combat readiness during the nation's biggest war games in more than two decades. 'Today we can be proud of our army,' Putin said. The maneuvers, which began Friday and continue through this week, involve 160,000 troops and about 5,000 tanks and other armored vehicles across Siberia and the far eastern region in a massive show of the nation's resurgent military might. The exercise also involved 70 Pacific Fleet ships and 130 aircraft, including Tu-95 strategic bombers."

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Earthquake

My Way News - Algeria hit by earthquake, 11 injured
My Way News reports: "Algeria's state news agency says a 5.1-magnitude earthquake struck a town in the country's north, injuring 11 people and causing extensive damage."

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Global Community

My Way News - China's online population rises to 519 million
My Way News reports: "China's population of Internet users has grown to 591 million, driven by a 20 percent rise over the past year in the number of people who surf the Web from smartphones and other wireless devices, an industry group reported Wednesday."

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Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Doomed Damascus

My Way News - Fire from Syria hits Israeli-controlled Golan
My Way News reports: "The Israeli military says fire from fighting in neighboring Syria has hit the Israeli-controlled Golan Heights. The military said a number of what appeared to be mortar shells struck the Golan Heights on Tuesday, causing no damage. It did not believe the fire was aimed at Israel. Israel has been warily watching the Syrian conflict, fearing the violence could spill across its borders."

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Monday, July 15, 2013

Doomed Damascus

My Way News - Israeli leader vows to keep weapons from Hezbollah
My Way News reports: "Israel's prime minister insisted Sunday that he will not allow 'dangerous weapons' to reach Lebanon's Hezbollah militants, following reports that Israel recently carried out an airstrike in northern Syria against a shipment of advanced missiles. The airstrike in Latakia reportedly targeted Russian Yakhont anti-ship missiles, one of the types of advanced weapons that Israeli officials have previously said they would not allow to reach Syria."

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Saturday, July 13, 2013

Pestilence

My Way News - Virus-hit Saudi Arabia asks pilgrims to wear masks
My Way News reports: "Saudi Arabia, the epicenter of a new respiratory virus, asked Friday that pilgrims coming from across the Muslim world to visit its holy sites wear face masks in crowded places. [...] Saudi Arabia announced two deaths on Sunday, bringing to 38 the number of deadly cases in the kingdom. The new virus is related to SARS, which killed some 800 people in a global outbreak in 2003. It belongs to a family of viruses that most often cause the common cold."

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Thursday, July 11, 2013

Persecution

My Way News - Egypt: Suspected militants kill Christian
My Way News reports: "Security officials say suspected militants have killed a Christian merchant in the northern Sinai Peninsula. They said 60-year-old Magdy Habashi was abducted last Saturday from the town of Sheikh Zweid. His decapitated body was found early Thursday in a cemetery, said the officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the media. Habashi is the second Christian to be killed in northern Sinai in less than a week."

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Rumors of War

My Way News - Report: New Saudi missile site detected
My Way News reports: "A prominent defense analysis group says it has identified a previously undisclosed missile site in Saudi Arabia's desert with signs suggesting Iran and Israel could be targeted in a possible launch from the location. Thursday's report by the London-based IHS Jane's Intelligence Review could escalate concerns about a growing arms race in the Middle East linked to Iran's military expansions and nuclear program."

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Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Persecution Update

My Way News - Egypt's Christians face backlash for Morsi ouster
My Way News reports: "Some Christians are paying the price for their activism against Morsi and his Islamist allies in a backlash over his ouster last week. Since then, there has been a string of attacks on Christians in provinces that are strongholds of hard-liners. In the Sinai Peninsula, where militant groups run rampant, militants gunned down a priest in a drive-by shooting as he walked in a public market. [...] Churches across much of the country have cancelled evening Mass and social activities as a precaution against attacks."

Comment: Please join me in praying for the church in Egypt. 

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Tuesday, July 09, 2013

Fearsome Events

My Way News - Insurer: European floods year's costliest disaster
My Way News reports: "Last month's flooding in central Europe caused more than $16 billion in damage, about a quarter of it insured - making it the year's costliest natural disaster so far, a leading insurance company said Tuesday. Natural disasters worldwide cost the insurance industry a total of about $13 billion in the January-June period, while the overall cost of disasters was some $45 billion, Munich Re AG said in a regular review of disaster costs."

My Way News - 3 rescued in bridge collapse amid China flooding:
My Way News reports: "Three people were pulled from a raging river but six others remained missing following a bridge collapse Tuesday in mountainous western China amid heavy flooding that has forced thousands to evacuate their homes."

NBC News - 'A month's worth of rain' in under four hours triggers flash flooding, chaos in Toronto
NBC News reports: "A month’s worth of rain in a matter of hours caused chaos in Toronto on Monday, as flash flooding triggered widespread power outages, subway closures and left almost 1,500 people stranded on a commuter train filled with gushing water."

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Monday, July 08, 2013

Rumors of War - Persia

My Way News - Iran starts 5-day naval exercise in Caspian Sea
My Way News reports: "An Iranian semi-official news agency is reporting that the country's navy has started an exercise in the Caspian Sea. A Fars story Monday quotes Adm. Khordad Hakimi, chief of the northern naval fleet, as saying that the maneuver in Iran's territorial waters will end Thursday. [...] Iran routinely holds land and sea maneuvers, including in the strategic Strait of Hormuz, where ships carrying one fifth of the world's oil supply pass through."

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Tuesday, July 02, 2013

Covenant With Many Update

My Way News - Palestinian leader optimistic about Kerry efforts
My Way News reports: "The Palestinian president said Tuesday he is optimistic that U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry will succeed in restarting Israeli-Palestinian peace talks, a rare upbeat assessment about American mediation efforts."

Comment: This is more of an admin comment about this post, not about the news. Do you notice anything different about this post? Blogger.com has decided that every post must have a title. I use the news headline linked to the news source as the blog post's title, I've done this for years, but apparently I can't do it any more. So, I'm going to use the tag, which is a bit redundant, because the tag is already below the post, but at least it tells you in general terms which Bible prophecy the post relates to. I dislike it when companies (especially software companies) restrict user freedom, it conveys a lack of respect. I guess you get what you pay for. End of rant. 

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Nations in Distress

My Way News - Defiant Egyptian president says he won't step down
My Way News reports: "His fate hanging in the balance, embattled President Mohammed Morsi vowed not to resign Tuesday, hours before a deadline to yield to the demands of millions of protesters or see the military suspend the constitution, disband parliament and install a new leadership."

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Monday, July 01, 2013

My Way News - New EU member Croatia pledges regional ties
My Way News reports: "In its first day as a European Union member, Croatia on Monday pledged to help other Balkan countries move closer to the bloc and to help bring lasting stability to a region which was engulfed in conflict 20 years ago. Croatian president Ivo Josipovic met with leaders of other Balkan countries just hours after Croatia became the union's 28th member state. It is only the second former Yugoslav republic to join, following Slovenia in 2004."

Comment: 28 countries, that's quite a milestone!

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My Way News - Kerry says progress made in peace talks
My Way News reports: "U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry completed a new round of shuttle diplomacy Sunday without a hoped-for breakthrough in relaunching Mideast peace talks, but optimistically said he had narrowed the gaps between Israel and the Palestinians and vowed to return to the region soon to complete his mission."

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My Way News - Egypt's military issues 48-hour ultimatum
My Way News reports: "Egypt's military issued a "last-chance" ultimatum Monday to President Mohammed Morsi, giving him 48 hours to meet the demands of millions of protesters in the streets seeking the ouster of the Islamist leader or the generals will intervene and impose their own plan for the country."

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