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The Daily Brief Monday, August 27, 2012
"I will hear what God the Lord will speak, For He will speak peace To His people and to His saints." (Psalm 85:8)
The Daily Brief
1. Powerful Typhoon Lashes Japan's Okinawa Island - Fox News
TOKYO - The strongest typhoon to hit Okinawa in several years lashed the southern Japanese island and surrounding areas Sunday, injuring four people and cutting off power to about 30,000 households.Residents were told to stay indoors and warned that the storm's powerful winds could overturn cars and cause waves of up to 40 feet. The center of slow-moving Typhoon Bolaven was expected to pass over the island Sunday night, dumping as much as 20 inches of rain over a 24-hour period, weather officials said.
About 27,000 households on the island of Amami, north of Okinawa, were without electricity, and 3,100 households on Okinawa also lost power. Video footage from Naha, the prefectural capital, showed trees thrashed by the high winds, some with broken branches, and largely empty streets.The storm's relatively slow movement -- 9 mph to the northwest -- means "exposure to wind and rain will be that much longer," and raises the possibility of serious damage, said Shun Miyagi, an official with the Okinawa Disaster Prevention and Crisis Management Center.
More than half of the 50,000 U.S. troops based in Japan are stationed in Okinawa. At Kadena Air Base, one of the biggest bases on the island, all shops and service facilities were ordered closed and movement around the base was to be kept to a minimum. All entry into the ocean was prohibited.
Bolaven comes on the heels of Typhoon Tembin, which soaked southern Taiwan on Friday, largely sparing populated areas before blowing out to sea again.
- Lord Jesus, we lift up praise to You over Your mercy for Okinawa, realizing how much more destruction this typhoon could have created. We also praise You that the first typhoon, Tembin, turned out to sea again. In Jesus' Name we pray, Amen and Amen.
- Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever. (Psalm 136:1)
2. Cesium-laden fish may point to ocean hot spots - Japan Times
A record-high 25,800 becquerels per kilogram of radioactive cesium has been detected in fish caught within 20 km of the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant, according to Tokyo Electric Power Co., indicating there may be hot spots under the sea that need further investigation. That level is 258 times the government limit for safe consumption. The cesium was found in two "ainame" (greenlings) caught Aug. 1 at a depth of 15 meters, Tepco said Tuesday. It was the most cesium found among seafood samples so far. A person could get a dose of 0.08 millisieverts by eating 200 grams of the greenlings, Tepco said. A cumulative dose of 100 millisieverts increases the risk of dying from cancer by 0.5 percent.
- Father, thank You for revealing these radioactive hot spots that need further investigation. Continue to protect the Japanese people from further exposure to radiation from the fish they eat. We pray that no harm befall them. In Jesus Name.
- then no harm will befall you, no disaster will come near your tent. (Psalm 91:10)
3. Hurricane Warnings Issued From Louisiana To Florida Panhandle - Fox News
The U.S. National Hurricane Center issued hurricane warnings for an area stretching from Louisiana to the Florida Panhandle Sunday, as the storm lashed the Florida Keys. The warnings stretched from east of Morgan City, La. -- which includes the New Orleans area -- to Destin, Fla. The U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami said Isaac is expected to hit somewhere between southeastern Louisiana and the Florida Panhandle either late Tuesday or early Wednesday. It added that hurricane conditions are expected inside the warning area and preparations to protect life and property should be completed as soon as possible. Preparations have begun farther north as forecasters warn Isaac could be a strong Category 2 hurricane by the time it reaches the Gulf Coast.
Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal declared a State of Emergency for Louisiana on Sunday afternoon. Jindal, a GOP governor expected to speak at this week's Republican National Convention in Tampa, said he was staying put in Louisiana as the state awaits Tropical Storm Isaac. "I'm not going anywhere, so I'm not thinking about the convention. I'm not thinking about politics right now; our absolute top priority has to be the storm, which stretched more than 200 miles from its center, which is expected to make landfall as a Category 2 hurricane, which could bring top sustained winds of 96 to 110 mph. The Gulf Coast hasn't been hit by a hurricane since 2008, when Dolly, Ike and Gustav all struck the region. Tropical storm-force winds extended outward up to 205 miles from the center, meaning storm conditions are possible even in places not in Isaac's direct path. [The Associated Press contributed to this report.]
- Lord Jesus, we come before You to ask that this storm stay just a tropical rain storm - or dissipate and weaken as it plots its course westward, in Jesus' Name, Amen and Amen.
- Call upon Me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you shall Glorify Me. (Psalm 50:15)
4. Did GOP, Obama actions prompt Isaac? - World Net Daily
TAMPA, Fla. - Could Hurricane Isaac's disrupting of the Republican convention here be tied to recent policy decisions by the GOP leadership and Barack Obama? That question is being raised by Bible prophecy expert William Koenig, whose book, "Eye to Eye: Facing the Consequences of Dividing Israel," links catastrophic hurricanes hitting the U.S. with changes in policy toward Israel.
Koenig points out that on Tuesday, the day Isaac formed as a tropical storm, the Republican platform committee voted to add a "two-state" position pertaining to Israel for formal convention approval. Earlier, a pastor on the Republican platform committee offered an amendment for a one-state solution to the dispute between Israel and the Palestinian Arabs with no land concessions by the Jewish state. But former Sen. Jim Talent, R-Mo., quoted Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to demonstrate that the original platform language was consistent with the Israeli position. Talent was supported in his successful bid to defeat the amendment by Rep. Eric Cantor, the House majority leader, and the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, better known as AIPAC.
"This is the second straight Republican convention postponed due to a major hurricane," points out Koenig. "And this is the third straight Republican convention that became secondary news due to a hurricane. Bush was pressuring Israel during the times of the 2004 and 2008 conventions." Koenig links all three convention disruptions to platform committee decisions to support further division of the land of Israel to pave the way for the creation of a Palestinian state.
Earthquakes, hurricanes, tornadoes, even terrorist attacks have hit America often within 24 hours of calls by U.S. officials for Israel to withdraw from historically Jewish land.
What does this have to do with Bible prophecy?
It goes back to Genesis and God's pledge to bless those who bless the children of Israel and curse those who curse them. It's a prophecy that many Christians and Jews believe is behind the fall of all the world's empires of the past. That is a prophecy that has seen every empire of the world come and go - yet Israel remains.
But, with regard to Isaac, there's more to consider than the GOP platform decision. Koenig also sees significance in three other recent policy decisions by Obama's White House.
- O Heavenly Father, we need Your mercy as to this storm. We are thankful that governors of nearby states are taking emergency actions, but we admit our nation does not seem to learn. Our leaders keep trying to divide your special land Israel. They do not seem to understand that Biblically speaking, they are setting up negative counter actions to this nation, the USA. We plead mercy, Lord, since we know Your Biblical warnings, in Jesus' Name, Amen and Amen.
- A wise man fears and departs from evil, but a fool rages and is self-confident. (Proverbs 14:16)
5. City Of Camden, N.J., To Scrap Police Department Amid Budget Woes - Fox News
Crime-ridden Camden, New Jersey - often referred to as the most dangerous city in the United States-is getting rid of its police department.
In the latest example of a cash-strapped municipality taking drastic measures to deal with swollen public sector liabilities and shrinking budgets, the city plans to disband its 460-member police department and replace it with a non-union "Metro Division" of the Camden County Police. Backers of the plan say it will save millions of dollars for taxpayers while ensuring public safety, but police unions say it is simply a way to get out of collective bargaining with the men and women in blue.
"This is definitely a form of union-busting," Camden Fraternal Order of Police President John Williamson told FoxNews.com. "This method is unproven and untested, to put your faith in an agency that doesn't even [yet] exist."
Camden County Mayor Dana Redd has said layoffs of the city's police force will begin by the end of the month. Only 49 percent of current city police officers will be transferred to the new county division, whose members will begin a four- to five-month training program.
"The officers who are getting laid off are going to have to be the ones who train their replacements," Williamson said.
Earlier this week, a meeting was held with officials from neighboring border towns for a progress update and how the plan would affect their communities. A minor fracas broke out when Chief Joseph Eisenhardt of the Barrington Police Department-a town that does not border Camden-was denied access to the meeting, causing police chiefs from eight other municipalities to walk out. While some suspect he and the other chiefs were there to show solidarity with the Camden city police, Eisenhardt said the county's other municipalities fear that Camden will soak up all of the county police department's resources.
"The county's resources would be sent to problem areas like [the city of] Camden, taking away from the patrolling of other towns in the county," Eisenhardt said. "There is a crisis, but this is not the solution.
"It's a disaster waiting to happen."
- Lord, we fall before You and repent mightily as we know our nation is reaping the results of our turning our back on You, and Your ways. We see so many states, cities, towns and counties deeply struggling financially to pay their bills. Oh Lord, we cry out before You in repentance and ask for mercy, Lord! We know the news in this article could easily spread across our nation. Direct us, Lord, as how to pray and hear Your will for all of this, in Jesus' Name, Amen and Amen.
- There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death. (Proverbs 16:25)
6. An American Hero Passes Away - Gary Bauer
Astronaut Neil A. Armstrong passed away over the weekend at the age of 82. Armstrong was a genuine American hero. On July 20, 1969, Armstrong became the first man to walk on the moon. His comment, "That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind," became one of the best known quotes of modern history and is sure to be remembered for centuries.
But Armstrong did not allow his life to revolve around that historic achievement. He was a humble and private man, but believed passionately in the space program. He was the product of a generation when our leaders, Republicans and Democrats alike, chose greatness. They believed strongly that if mankind was going to explore the heavens, it should be free people, not the slaves of totalitarian regimes, at the vanguard.
In recent years, Armstrong has spoken out against Barack Obama's cuts to the space program -- cuts Armstrong described as "devastating." Today our astronauts can't get into space unless they hitch a ride on board a Russian rocket.
- Father, we speak comfort to the family for their loss. May our nation remember this hero and his achievements. May our government restore the space program in the near future. In Jesus Name.
- "Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid." (John 14:27)
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:
"Turn us again, O God, and cause Your face to shine, and we shall be saved!" (Psalm 80:3)
1. Netanyahu: Israel will strike Lebanese state in case of Hezbollah provocation - Ha'aretz
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has warned the Lebanese government that Israel would strike the Lebanese state if Hezbollah attempted any provocation against Israel.
2. Abbas to visiting Meretz MKs: Our UN bid is no replacement for peace talks - Times of Israel
The Palestinian Authority's plan to ask the United Nations to recognize Palestine as a non-member state is not a replacement for peace talks with Israel but meant to keep alive the two-state solution, PA President Mahmoud Abbas told a group of prominent Israeli leftwing politicians on Sunday.
3. Olmert struck Syrian nuclear reactor in 2007 immediately after Bush refused to do so - Times of Israel
Former prime minister Ehud Olmert ordered the 2007 strike on a Syrian nuclear reactor immediately after former US president George W. Bush informed him that the Americans would not attack the facility, according to a Channel 10 report aired on Sunday evening.
4. Obama 'Using Israeli Paper to Foil Iran Strike' - Arutz Sheva
The United States is colluding with a top Israeli newspaper to stymie Israel's efforts to strike Iran's nuclear weapons program, and the IDF knows it, according to a leading nationalist pundit.
The Daily Jot
End Time foreshadow: Islam beheadings in Afghanistan
The terrorist Taliban organization showed its disapproval of a dance celebration held by a village in southern Afghanistan by beheading 17 of the participants. The news media used the word "slaughtered" in quoting the government chief of the district named Neyamatullah Khan. Slaughtering infidels and those perceived as violating Sharia law is a common practice of the so-called "peaceful" religion. It is ordained by the Qur'an and is a tradition that began with Muhammad in the early days of his leadership. Given that Arab-Islamic nations are those named in the Bible as coming against YHVH's people in the end times, beheading is a clue that the antichrist/beast government may well be Islamic.
Revelation 20:4 says, "And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Yeshua, and for the word of YHVH, and which had not worshiped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with the Messiah a thousand years." Here it is documented that the witnesses of Yeshua Ha Meshiach were beheaded for their refusal to worship the beast. There is only one social-religious-economic system that has a tradition of slaughtering people by beheading them. It is Islam.
Joel Richardson, in his book "The Islamic Antichrist," documents the history of beheading from the early days of Muhammad. Richardson quotes Mark A. Gabriel, author of "Jesus and Muhammad," where Muhammad called to his warriors, "Do you see the soldiers from Mecca? Go and slaughter them." Gabriel wrote about the meaning of the word "slaughter," "The Arabic word for slaughter presents the picture of a farmer harvesting his crop with a scythe. In other words, Muhammad was telling them, "Cut their heads from their bodies as you would cut fruit from the branch of a tree." Richardson's book documents several ancient and modern practices of mass beheadings that the media rarely mentions.
The Qur'an instructs Muslims of the end times to use Muhammad as their example. Sura 33:21 says, "Ye have indeed in the Apostle of Allah a beautiful pattern for anyone whose hope is in Allah and the Final Day." That example is clearly emphasized in Sura 47:4 says, "When ye encounter the infidels, strike off their heads." Richardson quotes International Islamic Front spokesman Omar Bakri Muhammad, also a Sharia judge: "The punishment of those who wage war against Allah and His apostle and strive to make mischief in the land is only this, that they should be murdered or crucified or the hands and their feet should be cut off on opposite sides or they should be imprisoned." Here is great insight as to how the beast government will control not only its own people, but also believers in the one true YHVH.
Have a Blessed and Powerful Day!
On the Campaign Trail
In Tampa, GOP Strikes a Delegate Balance
Believe it or not, there's a bigger threat to the GOP convention than the weather. During meetings last Friday, the Republican Rules Committee surprised a lot of people by changing the way delegates are selected. Under the new system, the GOP's presidential nominees would have the power to override state parties and pick their own delegates. Essentially, the local party would have to surrender its authority to the candidate in naming representatives--even if the delegates are legally elected.
Without getting further into the weeds of convention politics, much of this has to do with the Republicans' fears over candidates like Rep. Ron Paul, who have such strong grassroots support. If they succeed in rewriting these rules, leaders like Paul would be prevented from having their delegates seated in future conventions. But in trying to head off these potential coups, the GOP is giving future nominees an unprecedented amount of power.
Why does that matter? Well, for starters, if a more liberal nominee can stack the deck full of sympathetic delegates, then he can weaken our ability to influence the platform through conservative delegates. Once this proposed change goes into effect in 2016, a more socially liberal nominee tied to the GOP establishment (which is most of them) could shut out delegates with conservative views. And with fewer pro-family delegates, groups like FRC Action have fewer friends on the inside to impact the language.
Left unchallenged, this could jeopardize the entire GOP platform which would have significant ramifications on core principles like life, marriage, and religious liberty. A lot of people feel like Drew McKissick, a South Carolina representative on the Rules Committee, who called it "groundbreaking"--and not in a good way. "We are telling the state how they have to pick their delegates." Although the Republican establishment is driving the changes, the idea has raised enough eyebrows to warrant a second look. Right now, conservative groups are circulating a "minority report," which, if it collects enough signatures, could stop the rules from taking effect. We'll continue to monitor the situation on the ground in Tampa and keep you updated on the latest. (Family Research Council)
Air Force Embraces Secularism
Air Force Takes Secularism under Its Wing
In the new report by FRC and Liberty Institute, we counted 644 incidents of religious hostility in the last decade. And thanks to a memo from outgoing Air Force General Norton Schwartz, we just found #645. Days before retiring, Gen. Schwartz took a parting shot at religious expression by warning commanders that they proselytize at their own peril. In the second section of his 27-page memo, Gen. Schwartz orders officers and supervisors to "avoid the actual or apparent use of their position to promote their personal religious beliefs to their subordinates or to extend preferential treatment for any religion." Failure to adhere, writes Gen. Schwartz, "can form the basis for adverse action [e.g. court martial] under the Uniform Code of Military Justice."
The Air Force had already accumulated quite a record of Christian intolerance. First, it suspended a 20-year-old class on "Just War Theory" because it included scriptural references. Next came the stripping of "God" from the Rapid Capabilities motto and the purging of Bibles from Air Force Inn checklists. At Christmas, the Academy ordered cadets to stop promoting a Christian charity for needy kids. Leaders even removed an article from a Squadron Office School curriculum for referencing chapel. Now, it seems the goal of religious "neutrality" has become an excuse for faith-based hostility.
As FRC's new Executive Vice President, Lt. Gen. Jerry Boykin (U.S. Army-Ret.), pointed out this morning, it's very unusual to see the severity of a punishment spelled out in memos. Clearly, this was designed to have a chilling effect. And since Gen. Schwartz refused to even define "proselytizing," leaders will have the freedom to interpret the term however they see fit. What's more, it doesn't clarify whether this rule applies equally to all faith groups or specifically targets Christians. Either way, it will almost certainly lead to a wave of self-censorship from commanders who are fearful of crossing the Air Force's blurry lines.
In the meantime, atheist groups are already seizing on Schwartz's memo as validation for their cause. But, as I told Fox News, a secular nation was never what the Founders intended. And our military--which ironically was designed to protect religious liberty--deserves better. For a national snapshot of faith-based intolerance, check out the joint report here. (FRC)
Un-Appealing Embryo Destruction
Un-Appealing Embryo Destruction
"If human embryonic stem cell research does not make you at least a bit uncomfortable, you have not thought about it enough." Those words, originally from the first scientist to destroy human embryos for their stem cells, were echoed by one of the D.C. Circuit Appeals Court judges who ruled on the lawsuit (Sherley v. Sebelius) about federal funding of such research. Yet the troubling nature of embryonic stem cell research did not stop the Appeals Court panel from ruling last Friday that the Obama administration could continue using taxpayer money for embryonic stem cell research, while creating an incentive for even more embryo destruction.
As you may know, embryonic stem cell research relies on the destruction of young human embryos, and that destruction is integral to the research. It is ethically bankrupt and hasn't produced a single treatment for patients. Federal money for embryonic stem cell research is a horrific waste of lives as well as taxpayer funds, delaying real patient treatments for thousands of people using ethical, successful adult stem cells. To see some real examples of stem cell success, visit FRC's Stem Cell Research Facts website by going here.
Ban Ki-Moon Heads to Tehran
DEFYING ISRAEL AND US, UN'S BAN KI-MOON CONFIRMS TRIP TO TEHRAN
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon will attend Iran for the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) summit next week, defying objections from Israel, the US and Jewish groups worldwide to boycott the event. A statement issued by his office said Ban "looks forward" to the summit and working with the visiting leaders, "including the host country," in an effort to reach "solutions on issues that are central to the global agenda." Taking place in the capital, Tehran, and under the chairmanship of Iran, the NAM Summit will be held on 26-31 August, and is expected to draw representatives from its 120 members. (INN)
(Reported by: JERUSALEM-ON-THE-LINE; Barry and Batya Segal)
Their comment: Unbelievable!
Iran's Nukes in Underground Bunker
IRAN EXPANDS NUCLEAR CAPACITY IN UNDERGROUND BUNKER
Iran has installed many more uranium enrichment machines in an underground bunker, diplomatic sources disclosed Thursday. Several informants said Tehran had put in place additional enrichment centrifuges in its Fordow facility, buried deep inside a mountain to protect it against any enemy strikes. One source suggested it involved hundreds of machines. Also this week the Islamic Republic started refining uranium at the Fordow underground site to a fissile purity of 20%. Iran has said for months it is preparing to move its highest-grade uranium refinement work to Fordow from its main enrichment plant at Natanz, and sharply boost capacity. The decision to conduct sensitive atomic activities at the underground site further increases tensions between the Islamic Republic, the US and Israel over its suspected nuclear weapons development program . (Ha'aretz/J.Post)
- "Raise the war cry, you nations, and be shattered! Listen, all you distant lands. Prepare for battle, and be shattered! Devise your strategy, but it will be thwarted; propose your plan, but it will not stand, for God is with us." (Isa 8: 9-10)
(Reported by: JERUSALEM-ON-THE-LINE; Barry and Batya Segal)
The Good News Corner
The Good News Corner
GOP Platform Committee Rebuffs Attempts to Weaken Marriage Stance
Republicans working to craft the party's platform before the national convention gets under way next week rejected two proposals on Tuesday which would have changed the GOP's position on marriage.
Rhode Island Delegate Barbara Fenton proposed replacing the plank endorsing marriage as the union of one man and one woman with language advocating civil unions for both same-sex and heterosexual couples.
"That was discussed and briefly debated," said Gregg Keller, executive director of the American Conservative Union. "That went down pretty decisively, however. The argument that was generally advanced by the people pushing the proposal was the separation of church and state, and the idea that government should not be 'meddling' in these institutions - that they should just get out of it altogether." (by Bethany Monk, CitizenLink) Read more.
Worship with Us Today!
Worship with Us Today!
A Praise On Earth
by Bruce and Lynne Patterson
Give God no rest til He restores Jerusalem,
and makes it a praise on earth . . .