• The Daily Brief
• The Middle East in Focus
• The Daily Jot!
• More News from Israel
• About Those Leaks at the White House
• Today's Legislative Focus
• The Threat To Your Health Care
• URGENT FROM JOEL ROSENBERG
• A Word from Billy Graham
• Worship with Us Today!
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The Daily Brief - Tuesday, July 24, 2012
"And what I say unto you I say unto all, Watch." (Mark 13:37)
The Daily Brief
1. Turkey sends military reinforcements to Syrian border - Today's Zaman
Turkey on Sunday sent military reinforcements to its border with Syria via the southeastern province of Mardin, the Anatolia news agency reported. Anatolia s the military deployed ground-to-air missiles to military barracks in the Nusaybin district, along the border with Syria, via a train that was loaded from a station in Mardin.
- Lord, we pray for the deliverance and protection of the people of Turkey. We pray they would come under Your protection, and call on You. Hold back those who are stumbling to the slaughter. In the name of Jesus we pray. Amen.
- Deliver those who are drawn toward death, and hold back those stumbling to the slaughter. (Proverbs 24:11)
2. Al-Qaida: We're returning to old Iraq strongholds - My Way
The first online statement from the new leader of al-Qaida's affiliate in Iraq claims that the militant network is returning to the old strongholds from which it was driven by U.S. forces and their Sunni allies prior to the American withdrawal at the end of last year, and that it is preparing operations to free prisoners and assassinate court officials.
- Lord, we pray that Al-Qaida not be allowed to gain strongholds in Iraq. We pray that any plans to free prisoners and assassinate court officials be confounded and stopped by You. Deliver and help Iraq, we pray. Let Al-Qaida be ashamed and confounded who seek to take innocent life. Let them be turned back and confused. We ask in the name of Jesus. Amen.
- Make haste, O God, to deliver me! Make haste to help me, O Lord! Let them be ashamed and confounded who seek my life; Let them be turned back and confused who desire my hurt. Let them be turned back because of their shame, who say, "Aha, aha!" (Psalm 70:1-4)
3. Assad rebuilds fighting command, retaliates against Turkey - Debka File
President Bashar Assad quickly recovered from the blow he suffered with the loss of his four top allies last Wednesday, July 18. Within 24 hours, he had put in place a new command for fighting the rebels headed by his younger brother Gen. Maher Assad, commander of the 4th Division, debkafile's military and intelligence sources report exclusively... Despite a wave of desertions, the Syrian army was soon back on the job, showing no signs of shock or wavering at the command level.
- Lord, let Your kingdom come in Syria. May the confusion and killing be stopped. We pray for protection of innocent people. May righteousness arise in Syria, and justice prevail. In the name of Jesus, our righteous judge and King of kings, we pray. Amen.
- Then the seventh angel sounded; and there were loud voices in heaven, saying, "The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever!" (Revelation 11:15)
4. 2 neurosurgeons banned from human research- Jewish World Review
The university has admitted to the federal government that the surgeons' actions amounted to "serious and continuing noncompliance" with federal regulations. The actions - described by two prominent bioethicists as "astonishing," and a "major penalty" for the school - threaten both the doctors' professional careers and the university's reputation and federal-funding status.
- Lord, we lift up these two neurosurgeons to you and ask that You guide them into using their knowledge for good. We pray also for the university, and that the right course of action be taken and that truth and righteousness would prevail in this situation. We ask that right counsel and knowledge be applied. In the name of Jesus we pray. Amen.
- Have I not written to you excellent things of counsels and knowledge, that I may make you know the certainty of the words of truth, that you may answer words of truth to those who sent to you? (Proverbs 22:20)
5. US poverty on track to rise to highest since 1960s - Yahoo News
The ranks of America's poor are on track to climb to levels unseen in nearly half a century, erasing gains from the war on poverty in the 1960s amid a weak economy and fraying government safety net. Census figures for 2011 will be released this fall in the critical weeks ahead of the November elections.
- Lord, we are still praying for a turning of the people of America to You. We pray that the sins of the people here be uncovered, and that there would be confession and forsaking of sins. We pray for mercy, provision, and Your blessings again on this country. In the name of Jesus we pray. Amen.
- He who covers his sins will not prosper, but whoever confesses and forsakes them will have mercy. (Proverbs 28:13)
The Middle East in Focus
The Middle East in Focus
This week, for all the headlines cited below, please join us in proclaiming THIS DECREE:
"Who is like You, O YHWH, among the gods? Who is like You, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders?" (Exodus15:11)
1. Israel wants EU to blacklist Hezbollah - UPI
Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman plans to ask European foreign ministers to blacklist Hezbollah as a terrorist organization, officials said.
2. US Congressman Walsh spearheads initiative to recognize Levy report - Israel Hayom
Will the U.S. Congress decide to recognize Edmond Levy's reports on settlements, even as the government of Israel has yet to decide what to do with the controversial report? The chances are slim, but Israeli MK Danny Danon (Likud) says that a new congressional initiative, spearheaded by controversial tea party-backed freshman Rep. Joe Walsh (R-Ill.), is aimed at getting Congress to recognize a report written by retired Israeli Supreme Court Judge Levy, which argues that Israel cannot be seen as an occupying power in Judea and Samaria.
3. Mofaz hints at Netanyahu plan to attack Iran - Times of Israel
Israel's opposition leader Shaul Mofaz, who until last week served as deputy prime minister to Benjamin Netanyahu, gave a broad hint on Monday that the prime minister intends to launch a military strike against Iran.
4. Report: EU to upgrade Israel ties - Ynet News
The EU will offer Israel upgraded trade and diplomatic relations in more than 60 areas at a high-level meeting in Brussels on Tuesday, just weeks after European foreign ministers warned that Israeli policies in the West Bank "threaten to make a two-state solution impossible," The Guardian reported Monday.
5. Arab League backs Palestinian bid for UN nod - Israel Hayom
The Arab League has voiced support for the Palestinian plan to ask the U.N. General Assembly to recognize a state of Palestine in the West Bank, Gaza and east Jerusalem, Palestinian officials reported this week.
6. Israel in tough warning over Syria weapons cache - AFP
With the Assad regime looking closer than ever to collapse, Israel has stepped up the rhetoric against Syria, warning it could take military action if any of its advanced weapons end up in the hands of Hezbollah.
The Daily Jot!
Of ancient paths and modern American society
Two events in recent days deserve commentary about the condition of our American culture. The first is the shooting in Colorado. The other is the sanctions against Penn State for the ongoing homosexual child molestation by one of its coaches. Now this may not rub you the right way, but I feel quite compelled to comment on both of them in a similar context. They both reflect the moral decay of our society, both in the acts that were perpetrated against innocent people and by the response by authorities in dealing with them. In both cases, those in authoritative public positions, not talking here about law enforcement, but public political positions, have chosen a humanistic approach in dealing with the issues.
Stories abound that elected lawmakers are calling for stricter gun control laws. The problem with this is two-fold. The US Constitution guarantees the right to bear arms. In fact, it says that right shall not be infringed. Gun control discussions should be off the table. The second problem with this notion is that under gun control, violent crime actually rises. Look at Washington, DC--the most gun controlled place in the nation. The murder rate is among the highest in the country. Under gun control, only the criminals get the guns. And they use them without regard for those who abide by the law. If there were armed citizens in that theater, some responsible citizen likely would have shot the killer, or his intentions may have been deterred.
The NCAA handed down some of the harshest penalties ever against Penn State's football program for one of its coaches, as the news media puts it "molesting" children. Well, that is not exactly the case. It was a homosexual pedophile who raped little boys for years under the cover of university officials. Now football players, who had nothing to do with the actual acts are the ones to suffer. The once storied Penn State football program is on life support because a homosexual coach used the football facilities as rape chambers. If the NCAA really wanted to prevent this from happening again it should perhaps ban homosexuals from football coaching staffs and fine the University in general for not stopping this horror.
We are living in a society where the smart people are so smart that they punish the crime rather than the criminal. They hold society responsible rather than the person responsible for the act. They use tragedy to advance their cause. We live in a society that promotes and embellishes the type of violence the Colorado shooter acted out in real life. We live in a society that promotes homosexuality, even the American Psychological Association in its papers has promoted man-boy relationships. And we are horrified when someone acts on these things. Our society is like Israel in Jeremiah 6:16 when YHVH says, "Stand at the crossroads and look; ask about the ancient paths, 'Which one is the good way?' Take it, and you will find rest for your souls. But they said, 'We will not take it.'"
Have a Blessed and Powerful Day!
More News from Israel
More News from Israel
1.Netanyahu: Exempt Haredim until age 26 - Ynet News
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has rejected the recommendations of the Plesner Committee, and a set of guidelines he presented to the cabinet Sunday made it clear that he has chosen to side with his ultra-Orthodox coalition partners. While the Plesner Committee called for everyone - except 1,500 exceptional yeshiva students - to be drafted, Netanyahu set a much lower draft target for haredim - 6,000 from that sector per year by 2016. The prime minister's guidelines drop the maximum age for a draft exemption from 28 to 26, as opposed to 22, as the Plesner Committee recommended "Later, we'll assess the situation and think about how to proceed," Netanyahu promised.
In addition to the 6,000 haredi conscripts per year by 2016 that the new guidelines - written by Minister Moshe Yaalon - call for, the new plan seeks to have 5,000 Israeli Arabs a year sign up for national service by 2016, in addition to the few hundred volunteering to serve in the IDF. The revised guidelines also call for every male aged 16.5 to present himself to the draft board, without any mention of service for women. They call upon the Defense Ministry to develop types of service appropriate for the needs of haredi recruits, including 45 hours of obligatory Torah study a week.
Director-General of Hiddush - for Religious Freedom and Equality, attorney Rabbi Uri Regev, said that "the Netanyahu government decided to give preference to its anti-Zionist haredi partners. It is determined to miss the historic opportunity to distribute the burden (of service) equally and create a disaster for the national economy and national security."
"The Ya'alon guidelines aren't anything more than the Tal Law II - that is to say, a plan that allows draft-dodging and discrimination to continue. The main purpose isn't to implement the basic principle of equal service for all, which the High Court of Justice has ruled on and which the public supports. History won't forget the coalition members' betrayal of the public on this issue. We can only hope that the voters won't, either," Regev concluded.
- O Abba Father, please defuse all the divisive bickering about the military draft with Israel. With threats surrounding the nation on all sides, Father somehow cause the various parties involved to listen to this plan where compromise may work for the haredim, and yet also for the draft. Confront them Lord on their divisiveness and their one-sided viewpoints; especially at this time of rising war threats, making them see that splitting the nation at this time impacts the future and safety of all the people of Israel, in Jesus' Name, Amen and Amen.
- Then he said, 'I saw all Israel scattered on the mountains, as sheep that have no shepherd.' And the Lord said, 'These have no master. Let each return to his house in peace.' (2 Chronicles 18:16)
2. Israeli Exports Down 7.7%, Sharpest Drop In 3 Years - Ynet News
May-June 2012 saw the sharpest drop in Israeli goods since the beginning of 2009, figures from the Israel Export and International Cooperation Institute indicate.Exports of goods excluding diamonds, dropped by 7.7% compared to March-April 2012, totaling some $7.5 billion. The Export Institute attributes the drop to a 19% decrease in Israel's export of medicine. However, even without this factor, High-tech exports totaled $3.45 billion, down 7.2% compared to March-April 2012. Export of communications, medical, and scientific equipment dropped by 4.6% and totaled $1.26 billion. Aircraft exports were also down by 2.4%, comprising $278 million.
Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz told Mamon that "There are indeed signs of a significant slowdown in the economy. We see this in decreased taxes, and unfortunately also in the worrying situation in the business sector, part of which is the result of protests and an intentional slowdown of consumption." "The European crisis is also having an effect," the minister noted. "The negative atmosphere has also caused currency values to drop, and that's not a good sign."The Export Institute numbers match data from the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) for this year, which show that from January-June 2012 Israel's trade deficit totaled NIS 38 billion, compared to a deficit of NIS 23 billion for the period up to June 2011.
A slowdown in exports has been noted since the start of 2011, when the European debt crisis began to make itself felt in euro zone nations and in decreased demand for Israeli products. From 2010-2011, Israel's exports rose by 7.6%, compared to a 17.1% rise in imports. Frozen exports, compared to the ongoing increase in imports, have caused exports to represent a small portion of Israel's foreign trade. In 2010 exports comprised 83.2% of imports, whereas in 2011 that number dropped to 75.4%, and in the first half of 2012 exports dropped to only 67.5% of imports. The growing trade deficit is harmful to the Israeli economy in two aspects: the growing trade deficit is driving the shekel down, and decreased exports are hurting Israeli manufacturing, which produces mostly for foreign customers.
- Pray that God will keep the economy of Israel strong and that exports will increase.
- " . . . a land for which the LORD your God cares; the eyes of the LORD your God are always on it, from the beginning of the year to the very end of the year." (Deuteronomy 11:12)
About Those Leaks at the White House
Senator Dianne Feinstein Blames Obama White House For Leaks
Senator John McCain (R-AZ), the ranking Republican on the Armed Services Committee, told CBS, "This is the most highly classified information and it's now been leaked . . . and that's not acceptable."
Senator John Kerry (D-MA), chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, said, "A number of those leaks, and others in the last months . . . are frankly all against national-security interests. I think they're dangerous, damaging, and whoever is doing that is not acting in the interest of the United States of America."
In response to pressure, Attorney General Eric Holder appointed two federal prosecutors to investigate the allegations and "to prosecute criminal violations discovered as a result of their investigations." After closed-door hearings last week, the chairman of the House Armed Services Committee told reporters that he was "pretty secure" that the Pentagon was not responsible for the leaks. So who is?
Yesterday Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, pointed her finger at the Obama White House. In remarks to the World Affairs Council, Sen. Feinstein said, "I think the White House has to understand that some of this is coming from their ranks." Feinstein was, of course, quick to absolve President Obama of responsibility.
But in one of its columns on Obama's weekly "kill list" meetings to determine the targets for future drone attacks, the New York Times noted that David Axelrod attended these sensitive meetings. Why was the president's "closest political adviser" sitting in on such meetings, and was it pure coincidence that the secret information in those meetings became public? If you believe that, I have a bridge in Brooklyn to sell you. (Gary Bauer)
Update from CHPP:
Late today, Ms. Feinstein backpedaled on her story, saying she was misunderstood. To read more about this latest news, go here.
- Please continue to intercede until all the facts about the source of these dangerous leaks come to light, and the person or people responsible are held accountable.
Today's Legislative Focus
Today's Legislative Focus
From The Madison Project
The Week of July 23-July 27
Fellow conservative patriots,
In spite of it being the dog days of summer, there is a lot going on in Washington, DC as Congress rushes towards the August recess. We have to be extremely careful as the legislative season winds down. Members of Congress will increasingly talk of the need to get something done and much of it will center around a budget for FY 2013. While we have great opportunity in this scenario as conservatives, there is also risk. More than ever, we have to be engaged and aware of what is going on in Washington. Yet another reason we bring you The Madisonian.
The Honorable Jim Ryun
Chairman of The Madison Project
Fiscal Year 2013 Budget
It's that time of year again. The battle over the annual budget for the next fiscal year has commenced. With just two weeks left until the August recess, and just three weeks in the September session until the beginning of the new fiscal year, the battle lines are drawn over the budget.
As we all know, Democrats, who currently control the Senate, have not bothered to pass a formal budget for three years. This year they failed to pass a single individual spending bill out of the 12 annual appropriations bills. House Republicans, on the other hand, have passed a budget along with 7 of the 12 appropriations bills. Because Democrats malevolently refused to work on the budget this late in the process, there is no way to continue funding the government on October 1 without resorting to a temporary Continuing Resolution (CR), which funds government at current spending levels and with current policy priorities until a final permanent solution is worked out.
The reason why these budget battles are always so contentious is because a budget not only lays out the topline spending figure for the year, it also reflects the priorities and governing philosophy of those crafting it. The House budget appropriates $1.028 trillion in total discretionary spending for the 12 subsections (the other $2.6 trillion is mandatory!), while Senate Democrats (with the support of some wayward Republicans) want to set spending at $1.047 trillion. But more importantly, the House bill defunds many onerous liberal policies and programs, most notably, Obamacare. Democrats are willing to force a government shutdown to fund this odious behemoth that is rejected by the voters.
In a surprise move to many observers, conservative hero Senator Jim DeMint is calling on both houses and both parties to come together and pass a CR now that will last into 2013 - the new Congress. There are several motivations behind his strategy. First, DeMint wants to avoid a scenario in which everyone is pressured into supporting a bad piece of legislation, perhaps a massive omnibus bill that contains new policies, under the duress of beating the clock in September. Republicans tend to capitulate when pressured for time, especially with the major elections looming just 5-6 weeks later.
Second, he wants to avoid a lame duck session, which is notorious for GOP capitulations. In 2010, Republicans (many of whom were on their way out the door) agreed to pass the START treaty, a massive FDA food takeover, repealed don't ask don't tell, and agreed to a tax extenders deal that undercut their superior leverage, setting themselves up for future problems that we are still dealing with today. By kicking the budget fight into 2013, we will avoid a scenario in which the budget bill is used as a vehicle to pass other bad legislation, most notably, a bad tax extender deal. It will also give us the leverage to shut down the lame duck session altogether, and preclude the Senate from passing bad treaties.
Third, and most obvious of all, DeMint and his allies are hoping that we win back all branches of government next year. All things equal, it's better to wait until 2013 to make all the important decisions, so we'll have more power and leverage.
Tomorrow: Conservative Concerns
The Threat To Your Health Care
The Threat To Your Health Care
Barack Obama and his Democrat allies repeatedly promised that nothing in Obamacare would cause any American to lose their health insurance if they liked their current policies. But the Wall Street Journal reports today that survey of 560 companies found that nearly 10% of businesses plan to drop their health insurance coverage if Obamacare takes effect as scheduled in 2014. And as many as one third might do so depending on the impact of additional government regulations and tax increases.
These are not insignificant numbers. Well over 100 million people receive health insurance through their employer. But Obamacare actually provides perverse incentives for businesses to drop insurance coverage of their workers and dump people into Obamacare, creating a huge new burden for taxpayers.
Quite frankly I think Obama knew this would happen. He ultimately wants all health insurance to come through the government, not the private sector. (Gary Bauer)
URGENT FROM JOEL ROSENBERG
ISRAEL CONSIDERING MASSIVE ATTACK
IF SYRIA TRANSFERS CHEMICAL WEAPONS TO HEZBOLLAH
Also, hints of an Israeli strike on Iran this fall?
By Joel C. Rosenberg
New rumors of war are emerging in the epicenter in the last 24 hours. "Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman on Tuesday said any attempt by Hezbollah to attain non-conventional weapons from Syria would prompt Israeli military intervention," reports the Times of Israel. "He also commented on the Iranian nuclear threat, saying that 'negotiations must end and actions must begin.' 'In the moment we see that the Syrians transfer chemical and biological weapons to Hezbollah, this is a red line for us, and from our point of view it's a clear casus belli,' Liberman said at a press conference in Brussels. 'We will act decisively and without hesitation or restraint. It will be a completely different ballgame. And we hope for the understanding from the of the international community and we hope for cooperation.'"
Haaretz, meanwhile, reports that "IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz said on Tuesday that if Syria's chemical weapons were to get into the wrong hands, such as those of Hezbollah, IDF military action could turn into an unintentionally broad campaign."
Another report in the Israeli media suggests Netanyahu is planning a September-October war to neutralize Iran's nuclear weapons program. The economic sanctions against Iran are clearly having a serious effect, but there is no evidence they are persuading the mullahs to abandon their nuclear program. To the contrary, Tehran seems to be accelerating their efforts. Netanyahu commented on the Syrian and Iranian threats on Fox News Sunday, an interview worth watching given the current climate.
A Word from Billy Graham
A Word from Billy Graham:
"MY HEART ACHES FOR AMERICA"
New letter addresses nation's declining morality and the need for spiritual revival
(Introduction from Joel Rosenberg)
America is in grave danger. The massacre in Aurora. The child sex abuse scandal at Penn State. The scourge of abortion and pornography and runaway spending and debt in Washington. The list tragically goes on an on. In Implosion, I try to document how serious the situation is, and how a Third Great Awakening is the only answer. In this context, I am encouraged by a new open letter to America written by Dr. Billy Graham. He makes some excellent points. Here are excerpts. Please read them, pray over them, and share them with as many as you can.
Pastors, would you consider reading excerpts from Dr. Graham's letter at your Wednesday service this week? Would you consider turning your mid-week service into a call to prayer, fasting and repentance, along the lines of 2 Chronicles 7:14 and Joel chapter 2? America urgently needs a wake up call, beginning with the Church. May Christ Jesus use you to preach a clear message of repentance, and to lead the congregation you shepherd before the throne of grace to seek God's mercy on our country before it is too late.
From Billy Graham:
Some years ago, my wife, Ruth, was reading the draft of a book I was writing. When she finished a section describing the terrible downward spiral of our nation's moral standards and the idolatry of worshiping false gods such as technology and sex, she startled me by exclaiming, "If God doesn't punish America, He'll have to apologize to Sodom and Gomorrah."
She was probably thinking of a passage in Ezekiel where God tells why He brought those cities to ruin. "Now this was the sin of . . . Sodom: She and her daughters were arrogant, overfed and unconcerned; they did not help the poor and needy. They were haughty and did detestable things before me. Therefore I did away with them as you have seen" (Ezekiel 16:49-50, NIV).
I wonder what Ruth would think of America if she were alive today. In the years since she made that remark, millions of babies have been aborted and our nation seems largely unconcerned. Self-centered indulgence, pride, and a lack of shame over sin are now emblems of the American lifestyle.
Just a few weeks ago in a prominent city in the South, Christian chaplains who serve the police department were ordered to no longer mention the Name of Jesus in prayer. It was reported that during a recent police-sponsored event, the only person allowed to pray was someone who addressed "the being in the room." Similar scenarios are now commonplace in towns across America. Our society strives to avoid any possibility of offending anyone-except God.
Yet the farther we get from God, the more the world spirals out of control.
My heart aches for America and its deceived people. The wonderful news is that our Lord is a God of mercy, and He responds to repentance. In Jonah's day, Nineveh was the lone world superpower-wealthy, unconcerned, and self-centered. When the Prophet Jonah finally traveled to Nineveh and proclaimed God's warning, people heard and repented.
I believe the same thing can happen once again, this time in our nation. It's something I long for, and my son Franklin recently shared a vision for perhaps the greatest challenge in the history of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association-to launch an outreach called My Hope with Billy Graham that would bring the Gospel into neighborhoods and homes in every corner of America next year.
Worship with Us Today!
Worship with Us Today!
Jesus, the Very Thought of Thee
Jesus, the very thought of thee
with sweetness fills the breast;
but sweeter far thy face to see,
and in thy presence rest.
O hope of every contrite heart,
O joy of all the meek,
to those who fall, how kind thou art!
How good to those who seek!
But what to those who find? Ah, this
nor tongue nor pen can show;
the love of Jesus, what it is,
none but his loved ones know.
Jesus, our only joy be thou,
as thou our prize wilt be;
Jesus, be thou our glory now,
and through eternity.