Tuesday, April 7, 2009

CHPP Daily Brief - April 7, 2009

In This Issue
• The Daily Brief
• The Middle East in Focus
• The First 100 Days
• America's Muslim Heritage?
• America Not A Christian Nation?
• Army Chief of Chaplains Call to Prayer
• Good News Corner

Capitol Hill Prayer Partners
P.O. Box 5152
Herndon, VA 20172-1970

The Daily Brief - Tuesday, April 7, 2009

"So fear not, little flock; it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom." (Luke 12:32)

The Daily Brief

1. Pentagon Unveils Large Cuts to Defense Budget - Times Online

The promised emphasis on budget paring is a reversal from the Bush years, which included a doubling of the Pentagon's spending since 2001. Spending on tanks, fighter planes, ships, missiles and other weapons accounted for about a third of all defense spending last year. But Mr. Gates noted more money will be needed in areas such as personnel as the Army and Marines expand the size of their forces.

Some of the Pentagon's most expensive programs would also be scaled back. The Army's $160 billion Future Combat Systems modernization program would lose its armored vehicles. Plans to build a shield to defend against missile attacks by rogue states would also be scaled back.

• Heavenly Father, we pray for Your guidance in these decisions about our defense. We pray for the right leaders who will give us the best strategies. We pray we will not be weakened by any cutbacks.

If the ax is dull, and one does not sharpen the edge, then he must use more strength; but wisdom brings success. (Ecclesiastes 10:10)

2. CEOs Expect More Job Cuts Through Year End - USA Today

Seventy-one percent of CEOs said they expect to cut workers in the next six months, up from 60% from November, when the quarterly survey was last conducted, and the most since the survey began at the end of 2002, the Business Roundtable said. Twenty-one percent expect to keep payrolls unchanged, while 7% said they plan to add workers.

The grim outlook for the job market comes as CEOs anticipate lower sales and business investment in the next six months.

• Lord, we pray for those who have already lost their jobs, and for those who may lose their jobs in the near future. We ask for a breakthrough in this economy. Give the people creative ideas on starting their own businesses. We thank you for supernatural provision. We pray that people will turn to You and really commit their lives to You. There is no other way but You!

Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you. (1 Pet 5.6-7)

3. Mortgage Delinquencies Soar in the U.S. - Reuters

Dann Adams, president of U.S. Information Systems for Equifax Inc, reported that 7 percent of homeowners with mortgages were at least 30 days late on their loans in February, an increase of more than 50 percent from a year earlier. But Adams said the continued increase in mortgage delinquencies revealed in his data foreshadows more foreclosures, short sales and home price declines as homeowners default and banks then repossess the homes to sell them at deep discounts.

• Lord, as we are going through this correction, let church leaders and ministers urge their people to come before You with weeping and fasting. Turn our nation back to righteousness.

Let the priests, who minister to the Lord, weep between the porch and the altar; let them say, "Spare Your people, O Lord, and do not give Your heritage to reproach, that the nations should rule over them. Why should they say among the peoples, 'Where is their God?' " (Joel 2:17)

4. Growing threat from cyber attacks: US general - Breitbart

Cyber attacks pose an increasingly serious and costly threat to US government and commercial networks, a US general warned on Tuesday. The Pentagon several months ago was faced with "a particular worm that was concerning us, that intruded into our military networks," General John Davis, said.

Davis welcomed plans presented Monday by Defense Secretary Robert Gates to fund an increase in cyber experts with stepped-up training efforts. Under the secretary's recommendations, the Pentagon would aim to train 250 cyber experts a year instead of the current 80 students.

• Father God, we pray for the people in charge of our cyber defense to be vigilant. We pray for wisdom not only for our Pentagon, but for our own computers. Confound the schemes of these wicked people.

But you, O God, will send the wicked down to the pit of destruction. Murderers and liars will die young, but I am trusting you to save me. (Psalms 55:23 NLT)

5. Franken, Coleman Await New Tally - ABC News

Minnesota's long-running U.S. Senate race is being reshaped by the opening and counting of as many as 387 absentee ballots that were rejected earlier. A three-judge panel ruled earlier that the ballots should be added to the race, in which Democrat Al Franken holds a 225-vote lead over Republican Norm Coleman. They will be counted Tuesday by state election officials at the Minnesota Judicial Center. The absentees aren't the last issue to be decided. Coleman's attorneys have also argued that some ballots were double-counted and that some missing ballots in Minneapolis were mishandled.

• Father, this contest has been delayed too long. We pray You will put a righteous man in this office. Surround our nation with godly leaders.

And I will come near you for judgment; I will be a swift witness against sorcerers, against adulterers, against perjurers, against those who exploit wage earners and widows and orphans, and against those who turn away an alien - Because they do not fear Me," Says the Lord of hosts. (Malachi 3:5)

6. DA: Chinese Man Plotted to Help Iran with Nukes

A Chinese businessman accused of helping Iran's military buy materials to make nuclear weapons has been indicted on charges of illegally sending millions of dollars through New York City banks, Manhattan's chief prosecutor said Tuesday. The department said it was acting to prevent weapons of mass destruction proliferators and those who support them from abusing the U.S. financial system for the benefit of Iran's nuclear weapons programs.

• Lord, we pray that these enemies from within our own country who are working to subvert our nation will be caught, and will not accomplish anything against us.

Destroy, O Lord, and divide their tongues, for I have seen violence and strife in the city . . . let death seize them; let them go down alive into hell, for wickedness is in their dwellings and among them. (Psalms 55:9, 15)

The Middle East in Focus

This week, for all the headlines cited below, please join us in proclaiming THIS DECREE:

"And the LORD spake unto Moses, go unto Pharaoh, and say unto him, thus saith the LORD, Let my people go, that they may serve me." (Exodus 8:1)

1. Israel pledges to work with U.S. for Mideast peace - Ha'aretz

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's administration pledged on Monday to work with the United States for Middle East peace shortly after U.S. President Barack Obama said he would push for Palestinian state.

2. Hamas wants to smuggle long-range rockets in one piece - Jerusalem Post

Israel fears that Hamas is working to build unprecedentedly large tunnels along the Philadelphi Corridor that will be used to smuggle long-range rockets into the Gaza Strip in one piece, senior defense officials have told The Jerusalem Post.

3. EU Sharpens Tone Against New Israeli Government - Spiegel

Germany and the European Union are unhappy with the approach so far by Benjamin Netanyahu's government to the Middle East peace process. EU diplomats are increasing pressure on Israel to voice its support for a two-state solution that would see the creation of a Palestinian state.

4. Obama: We are committed to Annapolis - Jerusalem Post

US President Barack Obama on Monday reiterated his country's commitment to previous understandings, including the process launched at Annapolis in 2007, in promoting a peace agreement between Israel and its neighbors.

5. US Envoy Mitchell to travel to Mideast next week - Ynet News

Special US envoy to visit Jerusalem, Ramallah, Cairo, will hold first official meetings with PM Netanyahu, FM Lieberman; State Department says Mitchell will aim to 'advance goal of two-state solution, comprehensive peace in region'.

6. Netanyahu gov't reconsidering road map - Jerusalem Post

The Netanyahu government is conducting a thorough policy review in which all diplomatic components - from the road map peace plan to the Annapolis process - are being reevaluated, The Jerusalem Post has learned.

7. PA steps up measures against Hamas - Jerusalem Post

The Palestinian Authority security forces have stepped up their measures against Hamas in the West Bank in the aftermath of the collapse of the "reconciliation" talks between the Islamic movement and Fatah.

The First 100 Days

DAY 78

"The king's heart is in the hand of the LORD; he directs it like a watercourse wherever he pleases." (Proverbs 21:1)

1. D.C. Council Votes to Recognize Gay Marriages Performed in Other States

Local government in the nation's capital say they will move from recognizing domestic partner rights to accepting same-sex marriage.

2. Medical Personnel at Gitmo Violated Ethics, Red Cross Report Says

Medical professionals who monitored CIA interrogations at the Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, detention facility violated medical ethics, the International Committee of the Red Cross says in a report.

The 2007 report, based on interviews with 14 "high value detainees" who were sent to Guantanamo in September 2006, said the health personnel monitored detainees as they were subjected to techniques such as waterboarding -- which simulates drowning -- and prolonged stress positions.

In some cases, the Red Cross reported, medical staff recommended stopping the treatment; in others they "recommended its continuation, but with adjustments."

3. Lawmakers Warn Slashing Missile Defense Leaves U.S. Vulnerable

Defense Secretary Robert Gates' call to cut back on missile defense programs is running into resistance from lawmakers and others who say the U.S. will be left vulnerable in the face of North Korea and Iran's advancing efforts to develop long-range rockets.

4. Pentagon Loses $100M in Six Months to Cyberattacks

The Pentagon spent more than $100 million in the last six months responding to and repairing damage from cyber attacks and other computer network problems, military leaders said Tuesday.

5. Actor Kal Penn Tapped by White House to Be Hollywood Liaison

WASHINGTON -- The White House has hired actor Kal Penn as a liaison between President Barack Obama's administration and Hollywood.

6. Obama Makes Surprise Visit to Iraq, Meets With Top Commander

President Obama all but declared victory in Iraq Tuesday, telling U.S. troops during a surprise visit to Camp Victory that they had given the Arab nation an opportunity to stand on its own as a democratic country. That, he said, is an extraordinary achievement.

"Here's a couple things I want to say. Number one, thank you," the president bellowed as he addressed troops at a stopover at the tail end of a marathon overseas trip. After capping his visit with meetings with top U.S. military and Iraqi officials, he then left Baghdad on Air Force One for Washington.

7. Vermont Legalizes Gay Marriage, With Override of Governor's Veto

The state legislature votes Tuesday to override Gov. Jim Douglas' veto of a bill allowing gays and lesbians to marry.

America's Muslim Heritage?

President Obama is wrapping up his eight-day European tour with a stop in Turkey. A Muslim nation and member of NATO, Turkey is a geographic, economic and cultural bridge between Europe and the Middle East. Speaking in Turkey today, President Obama once again "reached out" to the Muslim world. His speech was broadcast live throughout the Middle East by Al Jazeera and Al Arabiyia. Here is an excerpt:

"Let me say this as clearly as I can. The United States is not and never will be at war with Islam. . . America's relationship with the Muslim world cannot and will not be based on opposition to Al Qaeda. We seek broad engagement based upon mutual interests and mutual respect. . . We will convey our deep appreciation for the Islamic faith, which has done so much over so many centuries to shape the world for the better, including my own country. The United States has been enriched by Muslim Americans. Many other Americans have Muslims in their families or have lived in a Muslim-majority country -- I know, because I am one of them."

There was a lot in his remarks about what America will do and little in the way of the president's expectations of the Muslim world. The president clearly placed the burden of reform on the United States, not the world's Islamic states. Does this president have "mutual respect" for regimes that seek a second Holocaust and which persecute religious and other minorities? How many Muslim nations allow women to vote and hold public office?

It's ludicrous to suggest that our only problem with Islam is Al Qaeda. Al Qaeda is a big problem, but isn't the only problem. Has the president heard of Hezbollah, Hamas and Islamic Jihad? Is the president aware of the madrasses and mosques all over the world that preach the jihadist philosophy telling Muslims that their duty to Allah requires them to kill the infidel?

I assume the president is familiar with the 2007 Pew Global Survey of Muslim attitudes, which found significant levels of support of homicide bombings among Muslims throughout the world - 70% in the Palestinian territories (Why create another terrorist state?), 23% in Jordan (a supposedly moderate Muslim nation), 16% in Turkey and 10% in Indonesia (the world's most populous Muslim nation). The common denominator is radical Islam.

Thankfully, not every Muslim is a terrorist. But virtually every terrorist that the United States has to worry about today is a Muslim. For the president to downplay that is not only irresponsible, it confuses our own citizens and makes it more likely that there will be another 9/11 in our future. (Gary Bauer; End-of-Day; 4/6/09)

America Not A Christian Nation?

President Obama also told his Muslim audience, "We do not consider ourselves a Christian nation or a Jewish nation or a Muslim nation. We consider ourselves a nation of citizens who are bound by ideals and a set of values." That's odd. For a politician who claims to speak for the "common man" he doesn't seem to know much about the common man. According to a recent Newsweek poll, 62% of the nation does consider America a Christian nation. I suspect the average viewer watching on Al Jazeera was thoroughly unimpressed by the president's tolerance as he spoke to a nation that is 99.8% Muslim.

More broadly speaking, America is a Judeo-Christian nation, built upon the values in the Ten Commandments. If you asked Americans, "Do you consider America to be a Judeo-Christian nation," I believe the percentage of folks agreeing with that statement would skyrocket. If you asked, "Is America a Judeo-Christian-Muslim nation," I suspect the number of affirmative responses would plummet. Because, with all due respect to moderate Muslims, Islam has contributed very little to the history of the United States. The last time I checked, the pilgrims who landed at Plymouth Rock were Christians, not Muslims. Our Founding Fathers were inspired by the Bible, not the Koran.
And here's a historical footnote worth remembering: The first time America sent troops into combat overseas was when Thomas Jefferson ordered the Navy and the Marines to Libya to fight the Barbary Pirates. Still in its infancy, America was forced to confront militant Islam.

Our Founding Fathers must be rolling over in their graves. President Obama literally bowed to a Muslim king, downplayed America's sovereignty and denied its religious and cultural heritage. President Obama's apologies for America and his attempts to be inoffensive to our Islamofascist enemies should offend millions of Americans. (Gary Bauer; End-of-Day; April 6, 2009)

Army Chief of Chaplains Call to Prayer

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

We would like you to know about a significant event that is being sponsored by the Army Chief of Chaplains tomorrow, Wednesday, April 8th. Chaplain (Major General) Douglas L. Carver U.S. Army has issued a proclamation dated 2 March 2009 which calls all of his chaplains to a day of prayer and fasting according to their traditions on that day. Chaplain Carver also cites the Army stand down and training concerning "Suicide Prevention and Awareness" in his call to prayer. We ask you to join the Army chaplaincy in observing this day of prayer and fasting.

Capitol Hill Prayer Partners stands by this urgent call to a day of prayer and fasting for our men and women in uniform in this critical hour. Thank you!

Good News Corner

Burundi: President commits to 'put God before everything'

The president of Burundi, Pierre Nkurunziza, a born- again Christian, is currently taking the lead in building free primary schools in his country. With the help of outside donors and the Burundi government, the local people are constructing the schools themselves. Every Saturday they have to engage in community work. In addition to expanding access to education, the Burundi government offers free medical care for pregnant women and children under age 5 to help reduce the nation's child and infant mortality rate. The education and health-care projects are part of Nkurunziza's efforts to bring reconciliation and development in a nation where some 300,000 people died during a 12-year civil war between the minority Tutsis and the majority Hutus.

Elected with 92 percent of the vote in 2005, the year the war ended, Nkurunziza negotiated a historic peace agreement in 2006 and arranged for the Hutu rebels he once led to be employed by the national army to foster unity. Having completed four years in office, Nkurunziza, who is Hutu, is a rarity. The nation's previous presidents were all assassinated within months of taking office. "God was with me during the war," Nkurunziza said. "I said to my people, 'If you want to kill me you can try, but God is protecting me.'"

Nkurunziza's father, a former Member of Parliament, was massacred by Tutsis in 1972, and he later lost five of his siblings during the war. In 1994, while Nkurunziza was teaching at a university in Burundi, Tutsis came onto the campus and began killing Hutus. He escaped with some of his students to the bush, where he lived for the next 10 years. He joined the guerilla movement in 1996 and became its leader in 2000. Now known as the Forces for the Defence of Democracy, the guerilla group later became the political party that nominated Nkurunziza for president.
Although he attended an Anglican school, Nkurunziza said he became born-again in 1997 after receiving a Bible from a rural minister. "I started reading the Bible from beginning to end," he said. "When I finished, I got saved. That's it." He began leading other rebel combatants to Christ and said God spared his life after a near-fatal shooting. He hid without anyone to care for his wounds for four months, and when he returned to his troops - miraculously alive - he told them they would have to put God first in their movement if he were to remain their leader. "They said, 'Who did this?'" Nkurunziza recalled, referring to his miraculous survival. "I say, 'God, because I have no doctor here. So if you want me to lead your movement now, you must understand that I put God in the first place in your movement. . . If you can't accept that, I cannot lead you. From that time in our political party until now, God occupies the first place. Everything we do we start by praying and end by praying because we have to remember to put God before everything."

Nkurunziza plans to run for re-election in 2010 and wants to provide free secondary schooling and build more health clinics. Each August, the month of his election, the president holds a national crusade to thank God for sparing his life and developing the nation. He said he wants the crusades to cause the Burundian people "to think about God, what God has done for our nation, what God has done during the whole year so that as [we] praise God, He can be with us the next year." This year German evangelist Reinhard Bonnke will be among the speakers.

Nkurunziza has a message for the West, too. "We must return to our roots," he said. "Our roots are the respect and fear of God. . . It's so important that we believe and respect and think that God is our creator, and we must go in His way so He can protect our generation." (Joel News, March 31, 2009)

• "Father God, we thank You for raising up this shining light for Your glory in the nation of Burundi. May the example set by President Nkurunziza inspire many other kings, and those in authority, to rule in the righteousness of Christ Jesus. We pray tonight for Mr. Nkurunziza, his family, and all on his staff, asking You to keep them safe in this hour.

In Jesus' Name, we offer this prayer, amen."

The God of Israel spoke,
the Rock of Israel said to me:
'When one rules over men in righteousness,
when he rules in the fear of God,
he is like the light of morning at sunrise
on a cloudless morning,
like the brightness after rain
that brings the grass from the earth.'
(2 Samuel 23:3,4)