Today's Daily Brief
1. Musharraf Resigns As Army Chief - International Herald Tribune
President Pervez Musharraf resigned his military post as Chief of Army Staff Wednesday, handing over the command stick to his successor in a ceremony at army headquarters and ending his eight years of military rule. He remains president and will be sworn in to a new five-year term in the capital on Thursday, but as a civilian president his power will be diminished.
· Power at any price? We ask You, Lord for the salvation of this man who resigns an office but for all intents and purposes will continue to lead in the way he has done so for the past eight years. May deception end and Your truth prevail in Pakistan with many being saved due to this maneuvering by Mr. Musharraf.
· "Do not fear, for I am with you." (Genesis 26: 24b NKJV)
2. 1,500 Qaeda Members Freed After Counseling - NY Sun
On the eve of the Annapolis summit on the Middle East conflict, the Saudi royal family released 1,500 members of Al Qaeda from prison, requiring them only to promise to refrain from jihad within the Arabian Peninsula.
· How sad to think that these released prisoners will do no more harm. But with You God, all things are possible. So we again ask You to mightily intervene with this release of more criminal elements that can harm our troops in the Middle East. And as always, may they their families, their friends and even their countries be saved for Jesus' sake. Amen.
· "Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!" (Revelation 7: 10b NKJV)
3. Report: North Korea Again Helping Syria With Chemical Warheads - World Tribune
North Korea has resumed its assistance to Syria for the installation of chemical warheads on ballistic missiles, a Tokyo newspaper reported. Pyongyang has resumed the transfer of chemical weapons technology to Syria for the assembly of non-conventional missile warheads, according Asian security sources. They said the effort focused on the installation and testing of chemical warheads for the Scud C and Scud D extended-range missiles.
· In our human capacity, we can only think to ask You, Lord to stop this evil North Korean assistance by drying up all resources that Syria has to pay for this diabolical aid. But, we will further ask You to please have Your Holy Spirit intercede for other ways to achieve this disarmament, too. Thank You for the expected miracles when they come!
· "The violence of the wicked will destroy them, because they refuse to do justice." (Proverbs 21: 7 NKJV)
4. China's Action Troubles Admiral - Washington Times
China's refusal to allow two U.S. warships and the aircraft carrier USS Kitty Hawk seeking safe harbor in a storm to port in Hong Kong was decried by Admiral Timothy J. Keating, senior commander in the Pacific. The action was carried out over the Thanksgiving weekend to protest U.S. sales of Patriot missile equipment to Taiwan, Bush administration officials said yesterday.
Admiral Keating said via video from Honolulu, the denial of a safe harbor "is behavior that we do not consider consonant with a nation who advocates a peaceful rise and harmonious relations." The four-star admiral said he doubted that "we'll receive an apology from the Chinese. I'm not expecting one."
· Dearest Father, China needs a gentle reminder from You to tell them that there is pride before a fall. Please arrange for Your ways to reach their military and governmental leadership before another skirmish happens due to actions like this and another recently where a Chinese sub surfaced in the midst of U.S. Naval war exercises! We ask for help, in Your Name, Jesus. Amen.
· "Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall." (Proverbs 16: 18 NKJV)
5. Meet The Supermouse Bred By Genetic Scientists That CAN'T Get Cancer - Daily Mail
Mice resistant to cancer have been created in a breakthrough that could lead to a human treatment free of side-effects.
The breakthrough hinges on a mouse gene called Par-4, which produces the protein. U.S. researchers genetically engineered a group of mice to have higher levels of the protein than normal.
· May men remember Lord, that they are not You, God! Only YOU can cure cancer and create a way for researchers to know how to do this. May researchers have their hearts, minds and souls turned to You for help with this breakthrough and may it be for Your glory.
· "By humility and the fear of the Lord are riches and honor and life." (Proverbs 22: 4 NKJV)
6. Rising Sea Floods Indonesian Capital - Associated Press
Indonesia's environment minister said Tuesday that global warming was to blame after the capital of Jakarta was partially flooded, forcing thousands of people to flee homes and cutting off a highway to the international airport. Authorities used pumps to lower water levels, which reached six feet in the worst-hit areas and washed more than a mile inland Monday, according to Jakarta's flood crisis center. At least 2,200 houses were inundated, some with chest-deep water.
The flooding came as Indonesia prepared to host the U.N. climate change conference from Dec. 3-14, which aims to start negotiations on a replacement for the 1997 Kyoto Protocol on greenhouse gas emissions that expires in 2012. The sprawling archipelagic nation is one of the largest contributors of carbon dioxide emissions, due to the rapid pace of deforestation, but experts say it is also at risk of becoming one of the biggest victims of global warming.
· Heavenly Father, please allow for a way for Indonesia to openly allow for You to be spoken of in their land. May this be a way to show Your Grace and Redemption in the wake of this massive flooding! May many Indonesians be saved unto You because of this calamity.
· "For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord will give grace and glory; no good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly." (Psalm 84: 11 NKJV)
7. Senate Faces Vote on Alternative Minimum Tax - NY Sun
When the Senate returns next week, lawmakers will have to decide whether to raise taxes on "carried interest" profits of hedge-fund managers and private equity firms along with other measures that eliminate certain tax advantages for corporations. If not, there will be a tax hike for 23 million Americans. The chamber has dawdled on an $80 billion measure penned by Rep. Charles Rangel of Harlem aimed at providing a one-year fix of the alternative minimum tax, commonly known as the "Alt-Min" tax, which could hit millions in the middle class even though it was meant to affect only the wealthiest taxpayers.
The House bill includes a hotly contested provision that would more than double the tax rate imposed on the earned by the managers of hedge funds. The central point of dispute has not changed: Many Democrats want to offset the cost of fixing the minimum tax by raising rates elsewhere, while Republicans and the Bush administration say the so-called "patch" should not be paid for with tax increases.
· Gracious Father. We humbly ask for Your relief from tax inspired political correctness. Please soften hearts in the Senate for a real vote to help Americans so that a true "Alt-Min" tax can be assigned to those who should pay it, give help to those who need relief from it, and prevent it from being assessed upon those who shouldn't pay it! Thank You.
· "'For the oppression of the poor, for the sighing of the needy, Now I will arise," says the Lord; 'I will set him in the safety for which he yearns.'" (Psalm 12: 5 NKJV)
The Middle East in Focus
This week, for all the headlines cited below, please join us in proclaiming THIS DECREE:
"The LORD foils the plans of the nations; he thwarts the purposes of the peoples. But the plans of the LORD stand firm forever, the purposes of his heart through all generations." (Ps 33:10-11)
1. Israelis, Palestinians agree to launch peace talks - Ynet News
Israel and the Palestinians agreed on Tuesday to immediately launch negotiations to achieve a peace treaty to end their six-decade conflict, US President George W. Bush said.
2. Saudis call for Israeli talks with Syria, Lebanon - Ynet News
Saudi Arabia called on Tuesday for a quick start to Israeli peace talks with Syria and Lebanon following an announcement that Israeli-Palestinian negotiations would resume immediately.
3. Evangelicals blast any Jerusalem division - Jerusalem Post
The heads of three major evangelical Christian organizations based in Jerusalem on Tuesday criticized the proposed division of Jerusalem as part of a peace treaty between Israel and the Palestinians, saying such a move would severely restrict freedom of worship in the holy city.
4. Olmert: Former PMs prepared to give up Golan - Jerusalem Post
Prime Minister Ehud Olmert on Monday confirmed his readiness to open substantive peace talks with Syria, and pointedly recalled that three previous prime ministers had shown a readiness to leave the entire Golan or the overwhelming proportion of it.
5. Russian FM Lavrov: Next peace summit will be held in Moscow - Jerusalem Post "The next peace summit between the Israelis and Palestinians will be held in Moscow," Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov announced Wednesday morning, confirming a Jerusalem Post report from Tuesday.
6. Is this the time for a Gaza operation? - Jerusalem Post
While the Annapolis summit concluded on Tuesday, paving the way for Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations, the defense establishment began gearing up for the possibility that Defense Minister Ehud Barak, upon his return from the United States, will order a large-scale military operation into the Gaza Strip.
7. Geologist's prophecy: Holy Land overdue for a major earthquake - World Tirbune
Based on 400-year historical cycles a the pattern of recent tremors, the Middle East should be expecting a major earthquake in the near future, a geologist said.
Annapolis: The Aftermath
The Calamity of the World in the Wake of the Annapolis Summit
There is a flurry of activity surrounding the Middle East as the Annapolis Summit draws to a close with no real movement in any direction except that the two sides will continue meeting with the goal of a Palestinian state by the end of 2008. Meantime, its as if every possible avenue of Middle East disruption has been presented to the world in the past 48 hours. Headlines abound with news of Iran, Russia, Syria, the mortgage crisis, religious leaders seeking common ground with Islam, near record oil prices, record dollar declines, and so on. The world has entered a period of disruption because it seeks to divide the holy land, especially Jerusalem, by giving parts of it to an anti-God death cult called Islam.
Already, the Palestinian demands are coming that Israel must abandon all the territories captured in the Six Day war and give up East Jerusalem. Palestinian terrorist leader Mahmoud Abbas said, "I have the right here to defend openly and with no hesitation the right of my people to see a new dawn, with no occupation, no settlement, no separation wall, no prisons with thousands of prisoners, no assassinations, no siege, and no roadblocks around villages and cities." This, Abbas demands, includes the Golan Heights, the strategic high ground over the Sea of Galilee, where Syrian snipers routinely killed Israeli farmers and fishermen for sport before the Israelis captured it after Syria attacked Israel in 1973.
Abbas did not mention that the terrorist activity against innocent Israeli citizens will stop. And certainly, Abbas has no intention of putting an end to the terrorism. He has the international community buffaloed into believing that he and his Fatah terror organization has no control over the more radical terrorist group, Hamas. Hamas, meantime, held its own meetings denouncing the Annapolis summit and speaking against any concessions the Abbas contingency might make. The two organizations leave the world with the choice of working with the moderate terrorists or the radical terrorists.
All the while, the Bush Administration is pushing for a Palestinian state that will be under the control of Abbas and his moderate terrorist political party, Fatah. The events surrounding this charade seem surreal. That anyone would believe that terrorists would actually live in peace so long as one Jew is alive in the Middle East is confounding. The hate of Islam toward Jews and Christians far outweighs any desire to have peace, unless it is peace in submission to Islam. The world cannot see what the Apostle Paul wrote in 2 Timothy 3:13, "But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived." And so it is from Annapolis, Maryland to Jerusalem, Israel and all places in between.
Word of Life Ministry