Capitol Hill Prayer Partners
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On Capitol Hill This Week Volume XX, Number 4a
February 4 - 8, 2013
"The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
News from Israel
News from Israel
- ISRAELI JETS STRUCK SEVERAL TARGETS IN SYRIA
- SYRIA WARNS: AIR DEFENSE ON HIGH ALERT
- NUMBER OF ISRAELIS UPDATING GAS MASKS NEARLY TRIPLES
- HEZBOLLAH THREAT: MISSILE ATTACKS ON NAVY BASES, GAS RIGS
- PULL ALL SETTLERS, ISRAEL TOLD
- ISRAEL DEFENSE FORCES MECHANIC CAPTURES TERRORIST
- IAF COMMANDER: "SPACE IS STRATEGIC DEPTH"
1. ISRAELI JETS STRUCK SEVERAL TARGETS IN SYRIA
American TIME magazine reported Friday evening that Israeli warplanes struck several targets inside Syria in an alleged raid Tuesday night, including a biological weapons research center that was reportedly flattened out of concern that it might fall into the hands of Islamist extremists fighting to topple the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad. The report is based on comments made by Western intelligence officials. TIME explained that only two airstrikes had been publicly reported, amid a flurry of conflicting initial reports: Syria officially complained of the destruction of the Scientific Studies and Research Center in Jamarya, northwest of Damascus, and a variety of news organizations reported that Israeli jets hit a convoy carrying advanced anti-aircraft defense systems toward Lebanon's Beqaa Valley, presumably for delivery to Hezbollah. "A Western intelligence official indicated to TIME that at least one to two additional targets were hit the same night, without offering details. Officials also said that Israel had a 'green light' from Washington to launch yet more such strikes."
The American magazine stressed that "Hezbollah is not Israel's only concern - or perhaps even the most worrying. Details of the Israeli strikes make clear the risk posed by fundamentalist militants sprinkled among the variegated rebel forces fighting to depose Assad."
According to TIME, among the buildings leveled at the military complex at Jamarya, outside Damascus, were warehouses stocked with equipment necessary for the deployment of chemical and biological weapons," relatively complicated systems typically manned by specially trained forces."
The magazine also reported that lab facilities dedicated to biological warfare were of special concern, given both the damage that could be done by even small amounts of biological agents, and the interest expressed in such weapons by Osama bin Laden's successor, Ayman al-Zawahiri.
A Lebanese website reported Friday morning that Israeli warplanes were flying over the areas of Marjayoun, Hasbia and Rashaya al-Wadi in southern Lebanon, as well as over the Shebaa area and Mount Hermon. The website also reported that the Israel Defense Forces was patrolling the border fence area along the Blue Line.
- Abba Father, we come before You to seek a hedge of protection around these Israeli airstrikes. Lord, we ask that chemical and biological weapons be struck down and destroyed by Your actions before they can be loosed upon the earth. In Jesus' Name we pray, Amen and Amen.
- Because the Lord was with him; and whatever he did, the Lord made it prosper. (Genesis 39:23b) The violence of the wicked will destroy them, because they refuse to do justice. (Proverbs 21:7)
2. SYRIA WARNS: AIR DEFENSE ON HIGH ALERT
Syria continues to insist that Israel attacked a "research center" on its soil, despite Western and Mideast diplomats' claims that the alleged airstrike targeted a shipment of SA-17 missiles bound for Hezbollah in Lebanon. The war-torn Arab country further claims that the "attack" on the research center was aimed at testing its aerial defense systems, the Al Quds Al Arabi reported Thursday [January 31], citing Syrian sources. The sources told the pan-Arab newspaper that since the "attack" numerous air-defense battalions-particularly those deployed in the area between Damascus and the Lebanese border-are on high alert.
"Israel knows that a strike on a scientific research center that belongs to the military cannot cause damage, and that the production of Syrian weapons will continue at the site," one of the sources said. "Israel has other goals. One of them is to test Damascus' defense and rocket capabilities." However, the source added, "the Syrian Army will not provide Israel with an answer on this matter so easily." The sources repeated the claim that the alleged Israeli air strike targeted a research facility near Damascus, but insisted the attack did not damage underground military labs at the site.
Earlier, the White House warned Syria not to transfer weapons to Hezbollah, thus supporting the reports claiming the target of the air strike was a weapons convoy that was heading to Lebanon.
According to Ben-Yishai, Syria and Russia have an interest in denying the attack on the convoy because Moscow recently guaranteed Israel that the advanced weapons it sells to Syria-particularly anti-aircraft systems-would not reach Hezbollah. Assad, for his part, does not want the Russians to know he breached his agreement with them by transferring arms to Hezbollah. Moscow also fears the attack would open the door to additional attacks on Syria-this time by NATO forces.
The question is whether the attack will deter Syria and Hezbollah and stop the transfer of arms to Lebanon.
Source (By Roi Kais, Ynetnews, February 1, 2013) [Reported by BFP: Bridges for Peace]
- Thank God that Israel took the initiative to protect its people, and those in Syria and Lebanon from possible chemical weapons. Pray that this move will not antagonize Syria and Hezbollah, but will stop the movement and development of weapons.
- Now therefore, our God, we thank You and praise Your glorious name. (1 Chronicles 29:13)
3. NUMBER OF ISRAELIS UPDATING GAS MASKS NEARLY TRIPLES
The defense establishment's concerns about the potential threat of chemical weapons from Syria and Hezbollah has not gone unnoticed by the Israeli public. The Israel Postal Service reported Wednesday [January 30] that more Israelis are updating their gas masks and ABC kits. In fact, the number of Israelis changing their nonconventional warfare protection kits has nearly tripled over the past month. The public demand can be attributed to recent upheaval in Syria and the alarming possibility that the regime's arsenal of nonconventional weapons may find its way to Hezbollah, as was implied by Israel Air Force [IAF] Chief Maj.-Gen. Amir Eshel Tuesday. "Syria is undergoing tectonic changes. Given its massive arsenals, Israel may find itself dealing with nonconventional weapons on its borders," Eshel said.
ABC (atomic, biological, and chemical) kits have been distributed in Israel since Operation Desert Storm in 1991, when Iraqi Scud missiles hit the greater Tel Aviv area. The kits contain a gas mask and atropine pens, which are periodically updated according to their respective expiration dates.
According to the company, over 4,000 kits were distributed this week alone, and over 4.5 million have been picked up since the beginning of the latest distribution round. The Postal Service said that the company's reservation line has been flooded by calls from concerned citizens and that the number of daily orders has spiked from an average of 200 a day to 500 a day.
Source (By Noam (Dabul) Dvir , January 30, 2013) [Reported by BFP: Bridges for Peace]
- Pray that God will take the place of any fear within Israel. Pray for Israel's safety and provision.
- Only do not rebel against the Lord, nor fear the people of the land, for they are our bread; their protection has departed from them, and the Lord is with us. Do not fear them. ( Numbers 14:9)
4. HEZBOLLAH THREAT: MISSILE ATTACKS ON NAVY BASES, GAS RIGS
While Israel fears that Syrian WMDs [weapons of mass destruction] may end up in Hezbollah's hands, Bashar Assad is continuing to acquire lethal conventional weapons despite the civil war raging in his country. The Syrian president has paid [US] $2-3 billion on military equipment in what the Israel Defense Forces [IDF] defined as Syria's largest arms deal since the Yom Kippur War. Israel fears that the balance of power between Hezbollah and the Jewish state will change dramatically should Syria's weapons reach the Lebanese Shiite group. Such a development may threaten Israel's aerial superiority in Lebanon's airspace, the IDF fears.
In this situation, the 60,000 missiles and rockets Hezbollah has already smuggled into Lebanon will be the least of Israel's concerns should a third Lebanon war break out. The transfer of advanced Syrian military equipment, such as radars, to Hezbollah may ignite the region and lead to an Israeli strike.
Israel fears that some of these weapons will end up not only in Hezbollah's hands, but in the hands of global jihad elements linked to al-Qaeda. Israel Defense Prize laureate Uzi Rubin told Ynet that Hezbollah is a "state-like organization that operates as an extension of Iran. As far as I know, Syria's weapons-storage warehouses were open to Hezbollah even before the civil war. The Syrians have factories that manufacture rockets and missiles, and it will be very bad if al-Qaeda operatives will get their hands on them.
Source (By Yoav Zitun, Ynetnews, January 29, 2013) [Reported by BFP: Bridges for Peace]
- Pray godly wisdom for the government officials in Israel who are watching all the activity in the Middle East, and have the responsibility to act if needed. Pray that the threats of Hezbollah will never develop into anything real.
- And I have filled him with the Spirit of God, in wisdom, in understanding, in knowledge, and in all manner of workmanship(Exodus 31:3)
5. PULL ALL SETTLERS, ISRAEL TOLD
GENEVA - Israel must immediately start withdrawing its settlers from the Palestinian territories, the United Nations said on Thursday in a report that the Jewish state immediately dismissed as "biased". "Israel must... cease all settlement activities without preconditions (and) must immediately initiate a process of withdrawal of all settlers" from the occupied territories, said a report commissioned by the UN's Human Rights Council last March. Because of the settlements, Palestinians' human rights "are being violated consistently and on a daily basis", the three independent experts said in the report.
Israel settling its population into occupied territory falls "into the provision of article eight of the ICC (International Criminal Court) statute... on war crimes," Christine Chanet of France, who chaired the mission, told reporters in Geneva. She said it was unclear if the ICC could prosecute Israel for such crimes. The experts, who will present their findings to the 47-member state council on March 18, also called on Israel to "ensure adequate, effective and prompt remedy to all Palestinian victims... of human rights violations that are a result of the settlements".
All Israeli settlements on Palestinian land beyond the so-called 1949 Green Line are considered illegal under international law.
- O Heavenly Father, these accusations do not match what people who have visited there and have volunteered or worked there, have seen and experienced as to these settlements. The enemy of our souls is using the UN and the news media again to stir up strife. Lord, we know by Your covenental promises in Your Word, that Israeli people have the right to be living on this land. The meddling and hatred just continues on and on, Lord. We ask You to arise and strike down these lies, in Jesus' Name, Amen and Amen.
- Do not be afraid of sudden terror, nor of trouble from the wicked when it comes; for the Lord will be your confidence, and will keep your foot from being caught. (Proverbs 3:25-26)
6. ISRAEL DEFENSE FORCES MECHANIC CAPTURES TERRORIST
The vigilance and determination of a career officer prevented a major terror attack on Tuesday [January 29]. First Sergeant Major Barak Moshe chased after and caught a Palestinian terrorist who stabbed an Israeli teen. The victim, waiting at a hitchhiker's station at the Tapuach Junction was taken to the Rabin Medical Center in Petah Tikva, suffering from light injuries.
An initial investigation suggests that the terrorist, a Ramallah resident in his 20s, was caught by Moshe and arrested by a Border Guard force. A mechanic at the Samaria Territorial Brigade, Moshe recounted, "I was standing at the station with two Israeli teens next to me. "Suddenly I saw a Palestinian who looked about 23 years old coming, pulling out a knife, stabbing one of the teens and then starting to run. I immediately started to chase after him and caught him. He didn't try to struggle and said nothing. "
The terrorist admitted he had committed the act for nationalistic motives. Israel Defense Forces [IDF] and police forces are still investigating whether he acted alone or not. Meanwhile, security forces are still on high alert in the wake of recent terrorist attacks in the West Bank [Judea and Samaria]. Settlers called on the government to take tougher measures against Palestinians and redeploy the checkpoints that had been removed from West Bank roads in the past two years.
Source (By Itamar Fleishman, Ynetnews, January 29, 2013) [Reported by BFP: Bridges for Peace]
- Praise God that the terrorist was apprehended. Pray that his victim will be healed quickly. Pray that terror in all parts of Israel, Judea, and Samaria will cease.
- Behold, I will bring it health and healing; I will heal them and reveal to them the abundance of peace and truth. (Jeremiah 33:6)
7. IAF COMMANDER: "SPACE IS STRATEGIC DEPTH"
The Air Force depends very significantly on Israel's activities in space, as it helps [meet] its intelligence, communications and defense needs," said Commander of the Israel Air Force [IAF] Maj. Gen. Amir Eshel, speaking at the eighth annual International Space Conference today (Tuesday, January 29). The event was held in honor of Israel's first astronaut, the late Ilan Ramon.
Maj. Gen. Eshel addressed the effects of the changing geopolitical climate in the Middle East on the type of threats that Israel faces. "The weakening governance in neighboring countries heralds greater exposure to hostile activity-Syria is the best example of that. We must deal with a wider array of enemies and adversaries than ever," Maj. Gen Eshel said.
According to the IAF Commander, the scope of the IAF's interests and activities has grown drastically in the past decade to match the changing nature of warfare in the region. "We are dealing with weapons of every sort and type," Maj. Gen. Eshel said. "While in the past we addressed threats and challenges on our borders and on the fences, today the situation is essentially different: The threats can come from the front line, or [they can come] from the strategic depth to the front in the form of UAVs, cruise missiles, and non-conventional weapons."
Maj. Gen Eshel maintained that the IAF would continue to deal with every possible threat that Israel faces. "We work every day in order to lessen the immediate threats, to create better conditions so that we will be victorious in future wars. This is a struggle in which the Air Force is a central player, from here to thousands of kilometers away, and thus our capabilities in space are critical."
Source (By Yair Barzilai, Israel Defense Forces, January 29, 2013) [Reported by BFP: Bridges for Peace]
- Pray for a successful space program for Israel. Pray that God will reveal what Israel needs to know to keep it secure.
- Behold, You desire truth in the inward parts, and in the hidden part You will make me to know wisdom. (Psalm 51:6)
More International News
More International News
- EGYPTIAN MAGAZINE: MOSLEM BROTHERHOOD INFILTRATES OBAMA ADMINISTRATION
- AHMADINEJAD TO MAKE HISTORIC VISIT TO EGYPT
- IRAN: PRESIDENT AHMADINEJAD UNVEILS NEW FIGHTER JET
- REPUBLICANS TO OBAMA: DON'T SEND F-16 JETS TO EGYPT
- WAS THERE A MAJOR EXPLOSION AT IRAN'S FORDOW NUCLEAR FACILITY?
- AMERICAN PASTOR SAEED CONVICTED; SENTENCED TO 8 YEARS IN IRANIAN PRISON
- N KOREA ISSUES GUIDELINES ON STRENGTHENING MILITARY
- NORTH KOREANS AMONG 40 DEAD AT IRAN NUKE PLANT
1. EGYPTIAN MAGAZINE: MOSLEM BROTHERHOOD INFILTRATES OBAMA ADMINISTRATION
An Egyptian magazine claims that six American Islamist activists who work with the Obama administration are Moslem Brotherhood operatives who enjoy strong influence over U.S. policy. The Dec. 22 story published in Egypt's Rose El-Youssef magazine (read an IPT translation) suggests the six turned the White House "from a position hostile to Islamic groups and organizations in the world to the largest and most important supporter of the Moslem Brotherhood." The story is largely unsourced, but its publication is considered significant in raising the issue to Egyptian readers.
The six named people include: Arif Alikhan, assistant secretary of Homeland Security for policy development; Mohammed Elibiary, a member of the Homeland Security Advisory Council; Rashad Hussain, the U.S. special envoy to the Organization of the Islamic Conference; Salam al-Marayati, co-founder of the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC); Imam Mohamed Magid, president of the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA); and Eboo Patel, a member of President Obama's Advisory Council on Faith-Based Neighborhood Partnerships.
Alikhan is a founder of the World Islamic Organization, which the magazine identifies as a Brotherhood "subsidiary." It suggests that Alikhan was responsible for the "file of Islamic states" in the White House and that he provides the direct link between the Obama administration and the Arab Spring revolutions of 2011. Elibiary, who has endorsed the ideas of radical Moslem Brotherhood luminary Sayyid Qutb, may have leaked secret materials contained in Department of Homeland Security databases, according to the magazine. He, however, denies having any connection with the Brotherhood.Elibiary also played a role in defining the Obama administration's counterterrorism strategy, and the magazine asserts that Elibiary wrote the speech Obama gave when he told former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak to leave power but offers no source or evidence for the claim.
- Although we do not know the truth behind these six men, we do need to pray against any infiltration into our government. Ask the Lord to stand between the Moslem Brotherhood and our White House. Also, ask the Lord to reach into the heart of these men, so that they can have salvation in Jesus Christ. Pray that these men receive a "cold shoulder" at the White House. Ask Him to block any more infiltration into the administration and to prevent any inclusion of sharia law into our Constitution.
- "And Moses said to the people,' Do not be afraid. Stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord, which He will accomplish for you today. For the Egyptians you see today, you shall not see again, no more forever. The Lord will fight for you and you shall hold your peace." (Exodus 14: 13,14)
2. AHMADINEJAD TO MAKE HISTORIC VISIT TO EGYPT
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad will visit Cairo next week, becoming the first Iranian president to travel to Egypt since Iran's 1979 revolution ruptured diplomatic ties between the two most populous countries in the Middle East.
Ahmadinejad will head Iran's delegation to a summit of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation in Cairo, said Amani Mojtaba, head of Iran's interest section in Cairo, which it maintains in the absence of an official embassy. "I hope that Iranian-Egyptian relations return to the full diplomatic level," he said. The trip follows a visit by Egypt's Islamist President Mohamed Morsi to Iran in August last year, when the two leaders agreed to reopen official embassies.
- Pray against any plotting taken at this summit. Pray that the Sunnis and the Shi'ites will not reach unity but will continue to be estranged. Ask the Lord to put a new heart into these Moslems to stop supporting terrorism and threatening to destroy Israel. Let the council from the various Middle East countries choose not to attend the summit.
- "He who would love life and see good days; let him refrain his tongue from evil and his lips from speaking guile."(1 Peter 3: 10)
3. IRAN: PRESIDENT AHMADINEJAD UNVEILS NEW FIGHTER JET
Iran unveiled what it said was a new, domestically built fighter jet on Saturday, local media reported. President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said at a ceremony in Tehran that the Qaher 313 demonstrated Iran's growing self-reliance in the field of military technology. Iran's functional air force has been limited to perhaps as few as a few dozen strike aircraft, either Russian or aging US models acquired before the 1979 Iranian revolution. The Islamic Republic, under an international arms embargo, has long struggled to find spare parts and some military experts say the fleet is outdated.
Tensions in the region have simmered over Tehran's nuclear program. Israel has threatened to bomb its nuclear sites if diplomacy and sanctions fail to stop Iranian nuclear activity the West suspects is aimed at developing a weapons capability. Iran denies the weapons charge, saying it seeks only electricity and medical isotopes. "Now the speed of Iran's development in science and technology does not depend on circumstances, it depends on our will," Ahmadinejad said on Saturday in remarks carried on state television. "We should set higher targets. We see that it is possible, we have the capabilities." "This project carries the message of brotherhood, peace, and security and it doesn't pose any threat to anyone. There is no intention to interfere in any other country's affairs," he said.
Iran often holds military drills and announces weapons advances that it says are for purely deterrent purposes, though some analysts are skeptical of such reported advances because they cannot be independently verified.
Western sanctions levied on Iran's energy and banking sectors have damaged its economy and limited oil sales, a major source of revenue for the government. But Tehran has shown no sign of backing down from what it says is its right to enrich uranium for civilian uses.
(The Jerusalem Post)
- This jet will allow Iran greater power in stopping oil ships from passing through the Straits of Hormuz and perhaps attack the oil development in Saudi Arabia. There is no telling what mischief Iran can cause. Ask the Lord to intervene in Iran's new jet. Ask Him to make sure that no more jets will be built. Ask the Lord to humble Iran's president so that he is open to learning about the Gospel and can be redeemed in Jesus Christ.
- "Make me to understand the way of Your precepts; so shall I talk of Your wondrous works." (Psalm 119: 27)
4. REPUBLICANS TO OBAMA: DON'T SEND F-16 JETS TO EGYPT
Congresswoman Ros-Lehtinen: US must reevaluate foreign policy following Morsi's anti-Semitic comments, recent Egypt violence. Members of Congress are asking the Obama administration to reconsider sending F-16 fighter jets to Egypt due to popular protests against the government and its use of anti-Semitic language. "Recent violent outbreaks and the volatile situation in Egypt should give the US reason to pause when considering continuing to provide foreign assistance to the government of Egypt," said Republican Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, ranking member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee's Middle East subcommittee, in announcing she was signing onto the letter sponsored by Republican Rep. Tim Griffin to US President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry. The letter requests that the administration delay the delivery of F-16 planes. Ros-Lehtinen continued, "Even more disconcerting are Morsi's views toward our closest friend and ally, the democratic Jewish State of Israel." She said that his statements "clearly reveal a man who holds Jews and Israel in such contempt that it would not be out of the realm of possibility to believe he is capable of turning his aggression toward Israel."
Ros-Lehtinen was referring to video footage from 2010 in which Morsi referred to Jews as "the descendants of apes and pigs" and urged Egyptians to "nurse our children and grandchildren on hatred" of Jews and Zionists. Ros-Lehtinen also referred to the demonstrations that have racked Egypt as citizens have vented their frustration with the new government and chaos has reigned in some cities. Morsi declared several cities in a state of emergency on Wednesday night. "With turmoil again on the rise in Egypt and the future of the Morsi Muslim Brotherhood-led government in doubt, it is clear that we need to reevaluate our foreign policy objectives when dealing with the Egyptian government," she said, describing that government as one that has repeatedly violated people's civil rights.
- May the Obama administration listen to and heed the advice of the Congresswoman. Even the ordinary American can see the foolishness of our sending these jets to Egypt, so why can the officials not see the same trouble, using the taxpayers' money to fund our enemy as well as Israel's? Pray that the Lord will intervene into this foolish gift to Egypt, and that He will stop the shipping of the planes. The Lord knows how to bring an end to these jets without anyone being faulted. Pray for wisdom in the Obama administration so that foolish gifts are no longer even considered.
- "For He Himself has said, ' I will never leave nor forsake you' so we may boldly say' For the Lord is my helper; I will not fear. What can man do to me'?" (Hebrews 13: 5b,6).
5. WAS THERE A MAJOR EXPLOSION AT IRAN'S FORDOW NUCLEAR FACILITY? IRAN SAYS NO. ISRAELI INTEL. OFFICIALS SAY YES. MYSTERY DEEPENS
Last week, Reza Kahlili - a former Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps officer who became a double-agent for the CIA - reported the following: "An explosion deep within Iran's Fordow nuclear facility has destroyed much of the installation and trapped about 240 personnel deep underground, according to a former intelligence officer of the Islamic regime. The previously secret nuclear site has become a center for Iran's nuclear activity because of the 2,700 centrifuges enriching uranium to the 20-percent level. A further enrichment to weapons grade would take only weeks, experts say - The blast shook facilities within a radius of three miles. Security forces have enforced a no-traffic radius of 15 miles, and the Tehran-Qom highway was shut down for several hours after the blast, the source said. As of Wednesday afternoon, rescue workers had failed to reach the trapped personnel."
Not a single major media outlet in Iran, Israel, the U.S. or elsewhere reported on the story at the time, much less confirmed it. Iranian officials flat out denied there had been any explosions. This led to concern that Kahlili's report was unreliable and that this was all mere rumor.Now, however, Israeli security and intelligence officials are indicating that there was, in fact, such an explosion. They're not taking credit for it, mind you. But they seem to be happy about it. "Israeli intelligence officials have confirmed that a major explosion has rocked an Iranian nuclear facility, according to a report Monday in The Times of London," "The British daily cited officials in Tel Aviv who said the blast occurred last week, as originally reported on the website wnd.com.
- Perhaps this news is an answer to our prayers, as we have often asked the Lord to block the development of nuclear capabilities in Iran, but we mourn the workers who may have been killed or wounded in the facility. Pray that families will be comforted by the Holy Spirit and that these families will desire salvation in Jesus Christ. Pray that the Iranians will have great trouble repairing its facility so that it cannot be restored to working condition.
- "Discretion will preserve you; understanding will keep you, to deliver you from the way of the wicked: from the man who speaks perverse things." (Proverbs 2: 11,12)
6. AMERICAN PASTOR SAEED CONVICTED; SENTENCED TO 8 YEARS IN IRANIAN PRISON
His wife, living here in Idaho, expects she won't hear from her husband until 2021, unless U.S. pressure is able to pry him free.
Naghmeh Shariat Panahi told World Watch Monitor that the last time she heard Saeed Abedini's voice was Jan. 9, during a 3-minute cell phone call between Boise, Idaho and Tehran, Iran. Abedini's family in Iran held two cell phones together -- one linked to Panahi in America, the other to Abedeni in a holding cell -- so the two could exchange words. "He wanted to hear the kids' voices," Panahi said Tuesday from her Idaho home. The couple has a 6-year-old girl, Rebekkah, and a son, 4-year-old Jacob. After the 3 minutes were up, "we heard there will be no more phone calls," she said.
Abedini, 32, was sentenced Sunday by a Revolutionary Court judge who concluded that Abedini's work to establish Christian churches threatened Iran's national security. A native of Iran and born Muslim, Abedini converted to Christianity in 2000 and spent several years establishing small "house churches." He was arrested in September, though his U.S.-based advocates say Abedini had agreed in 2009 to stop organizing churches. Since then, they say, he had turned his attention to building a non-religious orphanage and had made several trips to Iran for the purpose. U.S. authorities are not hopeful Saeed Abedini will be released from the Iranian prison - one known to be brutal and deadly.
(World Watch Monitor)
- Pray for the miraculous release of Saeed Abedini from Iranian prison. Pray supernatural strength and health upon him. Open the eyes of the prison guards and judges to see the angels of God protecting Saeed. Grant them wisdom to see that they cannot fight against the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.
- But the angel of the Lord by night opened the prison doors, and brought them forth, and said, Go, stand and speak in the temple to the people all the words of this life.(Acts 5:19,20)
7. N KOREA ISSUES GUIDELINES ON STRENGTHENING MILITARY
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un issued "important" guidelines on how to bolster the army and protect the nation's sovereignty at a high-level ruling Workers' Party meeting, state media said Sunday, an indication that Pyongyang may be ready to conduct an atomic test anytime. North Korea said last month that it would conduct its third nuclear test to protest international sanctions toughened over its long-range rocket launch in December. The U.S., South Korea and other countries have urged the North to scrap its nuclear test plans or face grave consequences.
North Korea says U.S. hostility and the threat of American troops in South Korea are important reasons behind its nuclear drive. The country also says it has the sovereign right to launch rockets to send satellites into orbit under a space development program; the U.S. says the December launch was a disguised test of banned missile technology. Pyongyang's two previous nuclear tests, in 2006 and 2009, both occurred after it was slapped with increased sanctions for similar long-range rocket launches. Recent satellite photos showed North Korea may have been sealing the tunnel into a mountainside where a nuclear device would be exploded.
Kim convened a meeting of the Workers' Party's Central Military Commission and made a "historic" and "important concluding speech" that serves as a guideline for strengthening the military and defending national security and sovereignty, the official Korean Central News Agency said. It did not say when the meeting took place. Top party and military leaders who attended the meeting "evinced their firm determination to unconditionally and thoroughly implement the militant tasks set forth by him," KCNA said.
- To gain power Kim Jong Un seems to be lying to his people. Pray that the people of N. Korea will not be deceived, but will look around and see the suffering of the people as they try to survive the bitter cold weather and starvation. Many are in contact with their relatives living in S. Korea and can understand the truth from their leader's propaganda. Pray that Kim Jong Un, being a young man, will close his mind to his father's goals and be ready to listen to the Gospel. Pray that he will stop listening to the voice of communism but instead hear the voice of Jesus calling him to salvation.
- "So speak and so do as those who will be judged by the law of liberty." (James 2: 12)
8. NORTH KOREANS AMONG 40 DEAD AT IRAN NUKE PLANT
The explosions at Iran's Fordow nuclear facility Jan. 21 killed at least 40 people, including two North Koreans, WND learned Sunday. At the time of the explosions . . . 203 Iranian scientists and technicians along with 16 North Koreans had been logged in at the site, though the initial report listed 240 people.
The regime is debating about how to explain the incident at a later date depending on the level of destruction, the source said, but because of internal rifts among President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and the Majlis (parliament), Ahmadinejad or others connected to his team will soon reveal the incident. (WorldNetDaily) Read more.
- We praise the Lord for WorldNetDaily (WND) for reporting news that no one else does. Indeed, the article above states that Iran has accused WND of being a "mouthpiece" for the CIA, so penetrating is their news!
Let's back up facts with prayer. Offer praise for direct evidence of the link between North Korea and Iran, now exposed in this report. Ask our Lord to sever the ties between these two terrorist regimes, making their alliance null and void. As above, pray for those who mourn the loss of the 40 who died at this nuclear site last week. May each one find comfort, by the Grace of God, in the knowledge of our Savior, who loves them, instead of allah, whom they fear. Pray!
- "He discovers deep things out of darkness, and brings out to light the shadow of death." (Job 12:22)
Hebrew Nation News
For additional, insightful articles about ongoing tensions in the Middle East, and elsewhere, we recommend this week's edition of Hebrew Nation News. You can access this report by going here. Blessings to all!
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Thought for the Week
On Capitol Hill This Week: Vol. XX, No. 4b
- HILLARY CLINTON RESIGNS AS THE 67TH SECRETARY OF STATE
- WHITE HOUSE EXPECTS HAGEL TO BE CONFIRMED
- OBAMA DELAYS KEYSTONE PIPELINE DECISION ANOTHER 6 MONTHS
- OBAMA: WE WILL FORCE CHRISTIANS TO ACT AGAINST THEIR FAITH
- OBAMACARE'S BROKEN PROMISES
- SENATE SUSPENDS DEBT LIMIT TO MAY
- SPECIAL FORCES TAKE ON DOMESTIC ENEMIES PROMOTING GUN CONTROL
- MIDDLE-AGED BREADWINNERS BECOME PART OF THE "SANDWICH GENERATION"
- STUDY: NEARLY HALF OF AMERICANS HAVE NO FINANCIAL SAFETY NET
- CONTRARY TO CIA SPECIALIST, DEMOCRACY WILL NOT DIMINISH ISLAMIC IMPERATIVES
1. WITH A HUGE SMILE . . . HILLARY CLINTON RESIGNS AS THE 67TH SECRETARY OF STATE
Hillary Rodham Clinton formally resigned Friday as America's 67th secretary of state, ending a four-year tenure that saw her shatter records for the number of countries visited, as John Kerry was sworn in as the country's new diplomatic leader.
In a letter sent to President Barack Obama shortly before left the State Department for the last time in her official capacity, Clinton thanked her former foe for the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination for the opportunity to serve in his administration. Clinton said it had been an honor to be part of his Cabinet.
'I am more convinced than ever in the strength and staying power of America's global leadership and our capacity to be a force for good in the world,' she said in the letter. (The Daily Mail) Read more.
- When our Lord birthed the vision of Capitol Hill Prayer Partners back in 1994, we began to pray for Mrs. Clinton, who was then serving as our nation's First Lady. We have continued to lift her before the Lord when she moved to the United States Senate in the year 2000, and again as the Secretary of State under President Obama.
Please continue in prayer for Mrs. Clinton as she now moves into the next season of her life. As a child, Hillary Clinton attended the Methodist Church in her hometown of Park Ridge, Illinois, and according to her testimony at a recent Presidential Prayer Breakfast, then gave her life to Christ. Please join us in prayer now for Hillary Rodham Clinton, that she will know the comfort that only our Savior can bring, as she comes home to Him again. Shalom.
- "All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never drive away." (John 6:37)
2. WHITE HOUSE EXPECTS HAGEL TO BE CONFIRMED
White House spokesman Jay Carney said on Friday he believes former Republican Senator Chuck Hagel, who had a rocky confirmation hearing on Thursday, will be confirmed by the Senate as U.S. defense secretary. Carney told reporters he believed the number of votes in favor of Hagel's confirmation had increased a day after Hagel came under withering fire from Republican senators for his prior comments on Iraq and Iran. "We expect the Senate to confirm Senator Hagel to the position of secretary of defense," said Carney . . . (Reuters) Read more.
- Lord, You are the One Who "sets up kings and removes them", and we ask that You would show Yourself strong regarding this appointment, and how it affects Your land of Israel. We ask that the secret things be revealed, and biases exposed. Shine Your light in the dark corners, we pray. We commit this issue to You, and thank You for Your intervention in the affairs of men. Amen.
- "Great are You in counsel and mighty in deeds, Whose eyes are open to all the ways of the sons of men, to reward or repay each one according to his ways and according to his ways and according to the fruit of his doings." (Jeremiah 32:19)
3. OBAMA DELAYS KEYSTONE PIPELINE DECISION ANOTHER 6 MONTHS
Republicans jumped on the news that the Obama administration is delaying judgment on the Keystone XL pipeline by another six months. "Americans have already waited 4yrs for POTUS to say 'yes,' from the office of House Speaker Rep. John Boehner.
The GOP push-back came shortly after Reuters reported Thursday that the administration will not announce until June whether it will approve or reject the proposed plan to build an oil-carrying pipeline from Canada to Texas.
The $7 billion plan is expected to generate work for the U.S. manufacturing center, and for many blue-collar construction workers, but is opposed by environmental groups. (Patriot Update) Read more.
- Heavenly Father, deliver this nation from those who do not desire the best for this nation's welfare. You Heavenly Father know the thoughts of man from afar and know best how to administer Your justice for the sake of those who put their trust in You.
- "O LORD, you have searched me and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways." (Psalm 139: 1-3)
4. OBAMA: WE WILL FORCE CHRISTIANS TO ACT AGAINST THEIR FAITH
The Department of Health and Human Services on Friday set the stage for a massive showdown between the federal government of the United States and American Christians who believe the government has no right to force them to act against their faith by mandating that they buy, provide or facilitate health-care coverage that includes sterilizations, contraception, or abortion-inducing drugs.
HHS released a new proposed regulation under the Obamacare law that the department presented as an accommodation to religious "organizations" that object to providing sterilizations, contraceptives and abortion-inducing drugs in their health care plans. However, the proposal does not truly expand the exceedingly narrow religious exemption presented in the initial regulation, which was finalized last year, and continues to offer no exemption at all to Christian individuals or business owners. (CNS News) Read more.
- Holy Father, we make a powerful declaration that the righteous also shall hold on his way, and he that has clean hands shall be stronger and stronger. The ungodly will be subdued by the mighty hand of our God and will meet resistance from the strong stand of those who live by the Word of God. The warrior angels will be dispatched from heaven and will come down and fight against the federal and shadow governments that would attempt to force the American Christians to act against their faith and belief in righteous living. In the Name of Jesus we make this declaration. Amen.
- "The roots of the ungodly shall be dried up beneath; and above shall his branch be cut off. He shall be driven from light into darkness, and chased out of the world. Surely such are the dwellings of the wicked, and this is the place of him that knows not God." (Job 18:16,18,21)
5. OBAMACARE'S BROKEN PROMISES
Every one of the main claims made for the law is turning out to be false.
As the federal government moves forward to implement President Obama's Affordable Care Act, the Department of Health and Human Services is slated to spend millions of dollars promoting the unpopular legislation. In the face of this publicity blitz, it is worth remembering that the law was originally sold largely on four grounds-all of which have become increasingly implausible.
Example: Lower health-care costs. One key talking point for ObamaCare was that it would reduce the cost of insurance, especially for non-group insurance. The president, citing the work of several health-policy experts, claimed that improved care coordination, investments in information technology, and more efficient marketing through exchanges would save the typical family $2,500 per year. (Wall Street Journal) Read more.
- Holy Father, we plead with God for the millions of Americans who need good insurance to help them live better lives and stay healthy. We place our hope and holy assistance in the God of heaven to fight this battle against those in government who would withhold this assistance of adequate and stable insurance. Bind and break the strength of this corrupted Care Act, disintegrate the lies and deception, break every element into shreds that it will not stand, and block and withhold millions of dollars that would be spent on promoting this Act. By the blood of Jesus. In His Name we pray. Amen. - "Yes, the light of the wicked shall be put out. The steps of his strength shall be hampered, and his own counsel shall cast him down. For he is cast into a net by his own feet and he walks upon a snare." (Job 18:5,7,8)
6. SENATE SUSPENDS DEBT LIMIT TO MAY
The Senate passed a bill extending U.S. borrowing authority until mid-May, clearing the way for a series of budget battles that Republicans see as opportunities to push for deep cuts in government spending. (Wall Street Journal) Read more.
- Abba, we pray that our Congress and Senate will stop extending the debt limit, and enact some real change, in the form of curtailed spending by this now-May deadline. We pray that there will be no further "kicking the can down the road", delaying the inevitable. We pray that the people of this nation will "hold their feet to the fire" in taking fiscal responsibility, and cutting waste from the government funded "pork-barrel" projects. We pray that there will be ways found to increase income without raising taxes any further than they already have. Hear our cries, O Lord, and have mercy upon us, we pray. Amen.
- "God clothes the grass in the field, which is alive today, but tomorrow is thrown into the fire. So you can be even more sure that God will clothe you. Don't have so little faith! Don't worry and say, 'What will we eat?' or 'What will we drink?' or 'What will we wear?' The people who don't know God keep trying to get these things, and your Father in Heaven knows you need them. Seek first God's kingdom and what God wants. Then all of your other needs will be met as well." (Matthew 6:30-33)
7. SPECIAL FORCES TAKE ON DOMESTIC ENEMIES PROMOTING GUN CONTROL
More than 1,100 retired and current Army Special Forces troops, Green Berets, have put their names to a letter that condemns the efforts by Washington politicians to restrict in any manner gun ownership, following the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Their 2,900 word letter has been distributed to media outlets and was originally posted at Professionalsoldiers.com. According to the post at Professionalsoldiers, "1100 Green Berets signed this Letter. We have a list of all their names and unlike any MSM outlets we can confirm that over 1100 Green Berets did sign. The list includes Special Forces Major Generals & Special Forces Command Sergeants Major down to the lowest ranking "Green Beret"." (Freedom Outpost) Read more.
- God, we thank You for raising up these eleven hundred Army Special Forces troops, Green Berets, for their indomitable courageous spirit that stresses determination that cannot be subdued. This ability is superior to all our enemies. We, the American people, stand behind them, support them in their stand to fight for what is right and pray they be protected and strengthened by our God. In Jesus' Name.
- "The Lord is our rock, and our fortress, and our deliverer; our God, our strength, in whom we will trust; our buckler, and the horn of our salvation, and our high tower. We will call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised: so shall we be saved from our enemies." (Psalm 18:2-3)
8. MIDDLE-AGED BREADWINNERS BECOME PART OF THE "SANDWICH GENERATION"
One-in-seven adults financially support both their parents and their kids at the same time, according to a Pew Research study released Wednesday.
What's the main reason behind this? Researchers say grown children who are "struggling to achieve financial independence" have become part of their parent's financial responsibility. The study cites the Great Recession and low employment figures as factors for young adults' unsuccessful job retainment. (A 2012 study noted youths were often underemployed, still living at home and had it harder than their parents.) (NPR) Read more.
- Heavenly Father, thank You that You are the ultimate provider of all of our needs. Thank You that You are the One who sees our needs even before we ask. Help us to be good stewards of all that You bless us with. This would include being a blessing to all those around us who are in need. We ask that You help all our families in the U.S. to look to You for our necessities of life. In Your Name we ask this prayer, amen.
- "Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him." (Matthew 6:8)
9. STUDY: NEARLY HALF OF AMERICANS HAVE NO FINANCIAL SAFETY NET
Nearly 44 percent of Americans don't have enough savings or assets to stay out of poverty should they lose their income.
A new report from the nonprofit Corporation for Enterprise Development (CFED) also finds that almost one-third of Americans do not have a savings account. The state-by-state breakdown of "assets and opportunity" shows that savings have been hit hard across the country, but some regions are much worse than others.
Almost every Southern state - ranging from North Carolina down to Florida, and west to Arkansas - was ranked in the worst category of "liquid asset poor." (CBS News) Read more.
- Father, we ask that You would spread out Your safety net over all Americans who need Your protection and wisdom to choose the right financial path that will provide them ample income to survive. Give them guidance, O God, and give them an ear to hear Your voice, and a receptive heart to allow the Lord to guide them. In Jesus' Name we pray.
- "Go home to your friends, and tell them how great things the Lord has done for you, and has had compassion on you." (Mark 5:19)
10. CONTRARY TO CIA SPECIALIST, DEMOCRACY WILL NOT DIMINISH ISLAMIC IMPERATIVES
The Wall Street Journal used a half page of its editorial space on January 30th to publish a totally illogical, if not delusional, column (Israel's New Islamist Neighborhood: If Western history is any guide, the growth of democracy slowly diminishes religious imperatives) by former CIA Middle East specialist Reuel Marc Gerecht regarding the future "moderation" of Islam in the Middle East. It appears the Wall Street Journal's editors, economic conservatives who can see no wrong in the human rights abuses in wealthy Islamic nations, wanted to highlight the column to justify U.S support of the Muslim Brotherhood in the takeover of half a dozen nations in the vicinity of Israel. (William Murray, Religious Freedm Coalition) Read more.
- Holy Father, this is a battle between godliness and godlessness and is waged in the heavenlies. God and satan are total opposites and this article comes out of the mouths of those who are on the side whose aim and purpose is to destroy the United States. God, we ask that You send forth the powerful angels in heaven to come down and war against this Islamist agenda and the lies that the growth of democracy diminishes religious imperatives. Save our nation, O God, from Islam and its dehumanizing beliefs. May the American people as a whole fall on our knees and repent of sin and take up the banner of the Cross of Jesus Christ who liberated us from sin and destruction. In the powerful Name of Jesus we pray. Amen.
- "And said, O Lord God of Israel, there is no God like You in the heaven, nor in the earth: which keeps covenant, and shows mercy unto Your servants, that walk before You with all their hearts." (II Chronicles 6:14)
ALERT FOR THE BOY SCOUTS OF AMERICA!
ALERT FOR THE BOY SCOUTS OF AMERICA!
Boy Scouts Face Backlash
News that the Boy Scouts of America is reconsidering its policy to allow openly homosexual scout masters has touched off a firestorm of controversy. Judging by the messages I am receiving from former Eagle Scouts, current scout leaders and parents of children in the Boy Scouts, there are a lot of concerned supporters of Scouting who are furious by this sudden surrender to the cultural left.
After all, just six months ago, an 11-member committee unanimously reaffirmed the current policy as "absolutely the best policy for the Boy Scouts." I see hints that the Boy Scouts may be hesitating.
Unfortunately, the intolerant left isn't giving up. It has relentlessly hounded major corporate sponsors who fear negative publicity. Last year, Intel, Merck and UPS stopped funding the Boy Scouts. Verizon is under pressure from left-wing activists to do the same.
But here is a key point to consider in this debate. While the focus is on the Boys Scouts of America, the overwhelming majority (69%) of Scout troops are locally chartered by faith-based organizations. In fact, the Mormon Church is the single largest chartering organization, serving more than 420,000 boys. Catholic, Baptist and other evangelical churches serve another 400,000.
This is why the left keeps going after the Boy Scouts. Like the meaning of marriage, it is partly an assault on religious liberty. What about this so-called "compromise" to allow local units to decide their own membership policy? "A house divided against itself cannot stand." It's a ruse designed to undermine the policy and force its eventual collapse.
The militant homosexual movement will never accept it, just as it never accepted the Defense of Marriage Act, a compromise that allowed individual states to define marriage. The radical gay rights crowd, with Obama's support, is now demanding that the Supreme Court strike down DOMA and force same-sex "marriage" on every state of the union.
Most local Boy Scout units, because they are chartered by churches, would likely maintain the existing ban on openly homosexual scout masters. I strongly suspect the gay rights crowd will continue its campaign against corporations that fund the Scouts or it will demand the Scouts expel the "bigots" -- those units that uphold the Scout oath to remain "morally straight." (Gary Bauer)
TWO WAYS TO TAKE ACTION NOW TO SUPPORT THE INTEGRITY AND THE MORAL FOUNDATION WHICH HAS GOVERNED THE BOY SCOUTS OF AMERICA SINCE ITS BEGINNING.
> > > Optlon One: From Gary Bauer
If you have not yet done so, please contact the Boy Scouts and urge them to stand firm. Call the BSA national office at 972-580-2400 or click here send them a message.
> > > Option Two: Family Research Council: Action Alert
The Family Research Council has issued a detailed Action Alert asking all of us to TAKE ACTION NOW for the Boy Scouts. Their detailed information, which includes the names and the phone numbers of all the members of the BSA Executive Board, is too long to post here, so instead, we ask you to click this link for more information. Thank you.
Video of the Week: Jonathan Cahn
Video of the Week: Jonathan Cahn
It has come to our attention that Jonathan Cahn's speech, delivered two weeks ago at the Presidential Prayer Breakfast, is no longer available on YouTube.
The good news is that you can still listen to Jonathan Cahn's SIZZLING Inaugural Prayer Message by going here.
> > > Please share this video with all of those on your own lists, as the word of this prophet must now be released to a nation, that desperately needs to return to Christ! Thank you!
This Week, Worship Our Lord As . . .
This Week, Worship Our Lord As . . .
"In His days Judah will be saved, And Israel will dwell safely; Now this is His name by which He will be called: THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS." (Jer. 23:6)
Lord, may I always remember it is never me, always Thee. In my goodness, it is Thee. How I praise You that I have no goodness apart from You. How I praise You that Your righteousness can be mine. Help me to be obedient to You -- in thought, word and deed.
( Source: THE NAME- HaShem: Daily Devotional Worship by Dr. Barri Cae Mallin)
Available on Amazon.com by going here: