Monday, February 9, 2009

On Capitol Hill This Week - February 9, 2009

In This Issue
· On Capitol Hill This Week; Vol. XVI, No. 6a
· More Prayer Points for Israel
· This Week, Worship Our Lord As . . .

Capitol Hill Prayer Partners
P.O. Box 5152
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On Capitol Hill This Week Volume XVI, Number 6a-b
February 9 - 13, 2009


"When the enemy comes in like a flood, The Spirit of the LORD will lift up a standard against him." (Isaiah 59:19a NKJV)



Israel's elections are tomorrow (February 10), and so far consistent polling trends have shown Benjamin Netanyahu and Likud as the most likely party to win and head the new government. The main focus has been the war in Gaza.

The party that has gained the most so far from the war is the immigrant party Yisrael Beiteinu, or Israel Our Home, which polls show are challenging Ehud Barak and Labor as the 3rd largest party in the next government with Knesset seats numbering in the teens. They are currently the 5th largest Knesset party. Hoffman said Yisrael Beiteinu, with an anti-Arab platform, has benefited from an anti-Arab atmosphere brought on by Gaza terrorists sparking the recent war. He also said that Yisrael Beiteinu has devoted supporters who see voting as their way to bolster national security and said the ceiling for the party's performance will depend on overall turnout-a low turnout will benefit them, as their voters are the ones more likely to vote than say voters of Kadima or Labor.

The war has negatively affected Tzipi Livni and Kadima, according to Hoffman, as some left-leaning voters went over to Labor and Barak "because he makes them feel safer," while some right-leaning voters have moved farther right than Kadima. Politically speaking, Hoffman said Kadima's being hurt has been "the major impact of the war." The current situation, where rockets are still being fired at Israel, has also hurt Livni, as Hoffman said she is blamed for the agreement that ended the war, and which has yet to be finalized, as well as Labor and Barak, the current defense minister. As for issues that could really impact the election in the final week, Gaza again takes the focus, as Hoffman mentioned the potential return of kidnapped Israel Defense Forces soldier Gilad Shalit and the possibility of another military operation in response to the ongoing Gaza rocket attacks. (By Joshua Spurlock, BFP Israel Mosaic Radio, February 3, 2009) [Bridges for Peace]

· The Israel elections are scheduled for February 10. Pray that the Lord will guide the process and the people will vote with wisdom and insight.

· "For the LORD gives wisdom; from His mouth come knowledge and understanding; He stores up sound wisdom for the upright; He is a shield to those who walk uprightly." (Proverbs 2:6-7)



The conflict with Gaza continues as a Grad missile hit Ashkelon on the morning of February 3, one of more than 30 missiles, rockets, and mortars launched at Israel since the end of Operation Cast Lead, according to an Israel Defense Forces (IDF) press release. Israel responded later that day, with the Israel Air Force again hitting smuggling tunnels, as well as a rocket launching site and a Hamas outpost.

"As the sole authority in the Gaza Strip, Hamas bears full responsibility for all terror originating within its area of control," said the IDF statement. Government spokesperson Col. (res.) Miri Eisin told Bridges for Peace the attack on Ashkelon was "certainly a point for concern," and added that they aren't willing for Hamas to define the agenda for both sides. "We're not interested in returning to a stage where they have rocket attacks and we retaliate, we want to change the situation," said Eisin. "We want to make the security situation on the ground such that the people in Ashkelon don't suddenly wake up to a rocket. This can't continue, and we won't allow this to continue."

· Pray that those involved in the process for peace between Israel and Hamas will insist on careful observance of the agreements made.

· "For they have healed the hurt of the daughter of My people slightly, saying, 'Peace, peace!' When there is no peace." (Jeremiah 8:11)


Following the Vatican's demand that Holocaust denier Bishop Richard Williamson recant to have full clerical status in the Church, the Anti-Defamation League called the decision a "major positive step forward," according to an ADL press release. The lifting of Williamson's prior excommunication to the Roman Catholic Church had sparked anger and made headlines due to his recent statements regarding the Holocaust, in which he diminished by about 95% the number of Jews killed and denied the existence of gas chambers.

Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director, said in a statement in the release, "We sincerely appreciate that Pope Benedict XVI heard our pain and anguish over the acceptance back into the Church of a Holocaust denier. The Vatican's statement is a major positive step forward for the relationship between the Church and the Jewish people. We await Bishop Williamson's disavowal of his Holocaust denial in what the Vatican said must be an 'absolutely unequivocal and public manner.'" (By Joshua Spurlock, BFP Israel Mosaic Radio, February 5, 2009)

· Praise God that the Pope responded to Israel and international concern over the return to full clerical status of Holocaust denier Bishop Richard Williamson.

· "The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction." (Proverbs 1:7)


Israel must investigate allegations that its army violated international law during its three-week war against Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip, the new U.S. envoy to the United Nations said on Thursday.

"We expect Israel will meet its international obligations to investigate and we also call upon all members of the international community to refrain from politicizing these important issues," Ambassador Susan Rice said in her debut speech before the UN Security Council.

Rice said that Hamas had been guilty of violating international law "through its rocket attacks against Israeli civilians in southern Israel and the use of civilian facilities to provide protection for its terrorist attacks. . . There have also been numerous allegations made against Israel some of which are deliberately designed to inflame," she told the council during a meeting on international humanitarian law. (Reuters) [Read more]

· If this was the "debut speech" made by our new ambassador to the United Nations, what now lies ahead for U.S.- Israeli relations at the U.N.? Please maintain a watchful eye over all policy presented at the United Nations by our new president. Pray!

· "You will know them by their fruits." (Matt. 7:16)


in her debut speech before the UN Security Council, Ambassador Susan Rice made it clear that the administration of U.S. President Barack Obama had a very different view of the role of the United Nations from George W. Bush's government, whose officials were often suspicious of the world body and occasionally spoke of it with disdain.

She said Obama's long-term goals included enhancing global peace and security, fighting terrorism and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, dealing with climate change, alleviating poverty and improving respect for human rights worldwide. "The United Nations is indispensable for advancing these goals and making our world a better, safer place," she said.

She also hinted that Obama had a different attitude towards The Hague-based International Criminal Court, the world's first permanent war crimes tribunal. President Bill Clinton's administration had signed the ICC treaty, which was never ratified by Congress. Bush later rejected the idea of ever joining the court.

"The International Criminal Court, which has started its first trial this week, looks to become an important and credible instrument for trying to hold accountable the senior leadership responsible for atrocities committed in the Congo, Uganda and Darfur," Rice said. (Reuters)

· Well . . . there probably was a good reason why President Bush regarded the U.N. with some "disdain." Ask our Lord to grant wisdom to our new president as the U.S. is seated, once again, among the nations of the world at the U.N. May he also be granted wisdom in relation to the use of the International Criminal Court as an instrument of "justice" at the global level. Pray!

· Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, "This is the way; walk in it." (Isaiah 30:21)


Kyrgyz President Kurmanbek Bakiyev said in Moscow on Tuesday that his country was shutting down Manas air base, which US and NATO forces have been using to route troops and supplies into Afghanistan. "[We have] made the decision on ending the term for the American base on the territory of Kyrgyzstan," Bakiyev said during a Tuesday press conference with Russian President Dmitry Medvedev in Moscow.

The Kyrgz president explained that the closure was because the two sides had not agreed on the "economic support" the US would provide Kyrgyzstan in exchange for its presence in the country. "We have discussed many times the issue of economic support to Kyrgyzstan for housing them. But unfortunately we did not reach an understanding with the United States," he said.

Kyrgyzstan's decision to close a key U.S. military base is "regrettable," Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said, but it won't affect the U.S. military effort in nearby Afghanistan. "It's regrettable that this is under consideration by the government of Kyrgyzstan, and we hope to have further discussions with them," Clinton told reporters Thursday after a meeting with French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner. "But we will proceed in a very effective manner no matter what the outcome of the Kyrgyzstan government's deliberations might be." (CNN)

· Clearly, President Bakiyev was feeling pressure from Russia as he announced this decsion. Perhaps the Russians are starting to 'flex their muscle" now in the face of this new administration in Washington. Pray for the safety of all the allied troops in Afghanistan, and for new supply lines to become available to them. The enemy may try to put a noose around our necks, but God can yet make a way where there is no way. Amen.

· "When the enemy comes in like a flood, The Spirit of the LORD will lift up a standard against him." (Isaiah 59:19a NKJV)


Militants blew up a bridge in northwest Pakistan on Tuesday, temporarily cutting a major supply line for Western troops in Afghanistan, a government official said. The attack was the latest in a series on the Khyber Pass by insurgents seeking to hamper the U.S.-led mission against the Taliban in neighboring Afghanistan. It follows the abduction Monday of an American U.N. worker in the southwest of Pakistan, an attack that underscored the fragile security in the country as it battles al-Qaida militants.

Up to 75 percent of the supplies destined for U.S. and NATO troops in landlocked Afghanistan travel through Pakistan after being unloaded at the port of Karachi. Most are driven along the Khyber Pass. Pakistan has dispatched paramilitary escorts for supply convoys and cracked down on militants in Khyber, but attacks have persisted, adding urgency to U.S and NATO efforts to find alternative supply routes.

The American was kidnapped as he traveled to work in Quetta city in Baluchistan, a province that partly borders Afghanistan but has largely been spared the al-Qaida and Taliban insurgency in the northwest. Police said Tuesday they were questioning several Afghans about the abduction of John Solecki, who headed the U.N. refugee office in the city, but were not treating them as suspects. His driver was shot and killed in the attack. "We have opened investigations, and our various teams are working on this case and the effort is to safely recover the man," said senior officer Wazir Khan. (Associated Press)

· As the situation in Pakistan and Aghanistan continues to heat up, pray for the protection of our troops and civilian employees, and for the protection of our supply lines. Pray, too, for the safe return of John Solecki -- and that he be found quickly. Pray!

· "He will give his angels charge over you, to keep you in all your ways." (Psalm 91:11)


NATO would not oppose individual member nations making deals with Iran to supply their forces in Afghanistan as an alternative to using increasingly risky routes from Pakistan, the alliance's top military commander said Monday.

Gen. John Craddock's comments came just days after NATO's secretary general, Jaap de Hoop Scheffer, urged the U.S. and other members of the Western military alliance to engage with Iran to combat Taliban militants in Afghanistan. "Those would be national decisions. Nations should act in a manner that is consistent with their national interest and with their ability to resupply their forces," Craddock, an American who is NATO's supreme allied commander, told The Associated Press. "I think it is purely up to them."

Securing alternative routes to landlocked Afghanistan has taken on added urgency this year as the United States prepares to double its troop numbers there to 60,000 to battle a resurgent Taliban eight years after the U.S.-led invasion. It also comes at a time when the main supply corridor through neighboring Pakistan is becoming increasingly dangerous as insurgents attack convoys that supply the foreign troops in Afghanistan.

U.S. officials have previously alleged that Iranian- made weapons and explosive devices were finding their way in the hands of insurgents in Afghanistan. But such criticism has been muted recently as President Barack Obama's administration tries to set a new tone in relations with Iran. (AP)

· Again, pray much that our new president be granted wisdom and guidance "from above" as he attempts to chart a new course in Middle East relations. May he not endanger our longstanding friendships with Israel, and other friendly nations, in an attempt to sway our enemies with diplomatic maneuvers. Pray!

· "I guide you in the way of wisdom, and lead you along straight paths." (Proverbs 4:11)

More Prayer Points for Israel

Friday Prayer Alerts
6 February 2009

From: Intercessors for Israel

1. With Israel's national elections being held next Tuesday, it is good to know that next Shabbat's prophetic portion concludes with Isaiah 9:6-7.

- "For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given: and the government shall be upon His shoulder: and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Of the increase of His government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of LORD [Yhwh] of hosts will perform this." (Isaiah 9:6-7)

- Thank You Lord for being so faithful - even when this nation, for the most part, remains faithless.

- We declare that regardless of what we see - LORD reigns! (Psalm 93:1; 96:10; 97:1; 99:1)

2. Israeli elections are coming at a very critical time in the history of this nation. She is surrounded by enemies - on all sides. Iran is marching towards nuclear weapons - and no one appears able to stop her. America has a new president who is striving to be friends with Arab and Islamic nations, which usually comes by forcing Israel to pay a price. And anti-Semitism is quickly rising worldwide. Israel needs strong leaders who see clearly and are not ashamed over Israel's current restoration.

- Lord, we ask You to overrule these elections so that we end up having a government through whom You can be glorified.

- ". . .the most high God rules in the kingdom of men. He appoints over it whomsoever He will." (Daniel 5:21)

- We ask You specifically that You allow the Likud party - with Benjamin Netanyahu as head - to win an overwhelming victory (Psalm 68:27).

- From this week's prophetic portion: "My heart is toward the governors of Israel, that offered themselves willingly among the people. Bless the LORD." (Judges 5:9)

- God, raise up leaders who see themselves as servants for Your people and are willing to offer themselves for what is best for this nation - and not just their own political careers.

3. According to the most recent polls, 29% of Israel's electorate are still undecided.

- Abba, wake up Your people to vote.

- Remove all apathy and discouragement from this battered people.

- Cause this huge undecided block to vote in line with Your will.

- Open up the eyes of Israelis to see that this current government has started two wars - and did not adequately finish either one.

- May they be punished at the polls for sacrificing our soldiers - yet not having the courage to make their sacrifice worthwhile.

- "Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord's sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme; or unto governors, as unto them that are sent by Him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well." (1 Peter 2:13-14)

- Protect southern Israel from rocket attacks from Gaza on election day that would prevent folks from casting their votes.

4. Please pray for the protection of Israel's electorate from manipulation in all forms - but especially from the media and from America, which has actually interfered with many of Israel's recent elections in one way or another.

- "Surely there is no enchantment against Jacob, neither is there any divination against Israel: according to this time it shall be said of Jacob and of Israel, What has God wrought!" (Numbers 23:23)

- Lord, hedge in US President Obama when he gives his first press conference Monday evening, the day before our elections. Do not allow him to interfere in anyway whatsoever.

- Protect Israelis from the very left leaning folks who dominate the Hebrew press.

- Give Israelis clarity of mind to vote in line with Your will and purposes.

- "So shall they fear the name of LORD from the west, and His glory from the rising of the sun. When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of LORD shall lift up a standard against him." (Isaiah 59:19)

5. This week, two reports concerning Iran should raise much concern among all the world. First, Iran reportedly launched a satellite into orbit. This indicates that Iran has the ability to produce ICBMs = International Continental Ballistic Missiles - which are capable of striking anywhere on the globe. Second, the Russian company helping Iran build its first nuclear power plant has stated it will be fin ished this year.

- O God, this Iranian threat is very real. We cry out to you, "Let God arise. let His enemies be scattered. Let them also that hate Him flee before Him . . . [Lord] scatter the people that delight in war." (Psalms 68:1,30)

- Wake up Israelis to recognize that we need a leader who both sees that this threat is very real and very dangerous and will have the courage to deal with it. [Netanyahu has been shouting from the rooftops about this threat for years - both here in Israel and throughout the West!]

- LORD of hosts - just like You did with Joshua before he attacked Jericho - give the IDF divine plans on how to deal with this threat. (Joshua 5:13-6:5)

- If need be, push Israel to deal with Iran before they have a nuclear bomb.

- "For I will cause Elam [ancient Persia - modern Iran] to be dismayed before their enemies, and before them that seek their life: and I will bring evil upon them, even My fierce anger . . . I will set My throne in Elam, and will destroy from there the king and the princes, says LORD." (Jeremiah 49:37-38)

This Week, Worship Our Lord As . . .

HOPE OF ISRAEL (Meekvay Yisrael)

"O LORD, the hope of Israel, All who forsake You shall be ashamed."
(Jer. 17:13 NKJV)

You are my Hope, O God of Israel! My sorrow may endure for the evening, but joy comes in the morning. You are my Hope; when all else fails, there is You. Help me never to give up on Your Wonderful Name.

(Taken from: Intimate Moments with the Hebrew Names of God, by Barri Cae Malin and Shmuel Wolkenfeld; Bridge-Logos Publishers; Gainesville, FL, 32614. ISBN: 0-88270-801-5)
On Capitol Hill This Week; Vol. XVI, No. 6b
· On Capitol Hill This Week; Vol. XVI, No. 6b
· This Week, Worship Our Lord As . . .


"When the enemy comes in like a flood, The Spirit of the LORD will lift up a standard against him." (Isaiah 59:19a NKJV)


After a brief Saturday work session, the Senate is back this afternoon hammering out the final details of a stimulus bill it expects to pass tomorrow. Although a team of mostly GOP leaders chopped $100 billion from the Senate's initial draft, more than $47 billion was tacked on through pricey amendments last week. Far from a "compromise," the latest Senate package costs $7 billion more than the House bill. Late last week several Republicans, including Sens. Arlen Specter (R-Penn.), Olympia Snowe (R-Maine), and Susan Collins (R-Maine), struck a deal with Democrats to vote for the bill in exchange for a few minor spending cuts. But according to Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.), a majority of the projects on the group's chopping block will likely be "restored" next week when negotiations start between the chambers. Apart from the bottom line, many of the problems we documented last week still exist, like the billions of dollars slated for ACORN and the anti-religious funding components.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) complained that "The new Senate cuts, if passed, will do violence to the future." The real violence, insists the Congressional Budget Office, will be done simply by passing the bill. "President Obama's economic recovery package will actually hurt the economy more in the long run than if he were to do nothing." In today's Washington Post, Robert O'Harrow writes that, the government will be spending money faster than any agency can account for it. The level of congressional concern was summed up Rep. David Obey (D-Wis.) when NPR asked him about the lack of direction on the stimulus spending. "So what?" Obey said. (Family Research Council)
· Many of you have called your leaders to protest the out-of-control spending. Even if it takes a few attempts to get through, please persist in contacting them, particularly in the next week as the House and Senate begin to reconcile the two bills. In addition to taking this action, take action also in prayer, lifting all of this up before the Lord. Only the Omniscient One can know all the details in this massive package; and only He can direct the hearts of our leaders to do the right thing for the American people -- whether to pass this at all or, if so, in what form.

· "Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven." (Matthew 6:10)

Buried in the rubble of President Obama's $1 trillion monstrous pork/stimulus plan is a section that bans Christian Bible studies, worship services and other religious activities from many public education buildings!All of this is found in the "greening" (supposedly to help the environment) of our nation's school section of the bill, costing at least of $3,500,000,000. The greening funds are to be used for the "modernization, renovation or repair" of higher education facilities, but prohibit the repairs where religious activities or services may be conducted. The economic crisis is being used as a pretext to curb religious liberty at institutions of higher learning. The ultimate impact will be to drive religious activities out of public education altogether. If higher education institutions worry about not getting part of this federal grab bag, they'll simply eject religious activities from their campuses so they can easily get the money. (Traditional Values Coalition)
UPDATE: . . . The provision states that the funds from the stimulus bill will not be able to be used to improve facilities that are "used for sectarian instruction, religious worship, or a school or department of divinity. The countless numbers of churches which use public school facilities will no longer be able to use such facilities if this abominable legislation passes. Senators Jim DeMint, R-SC, and Sam Brownback (R-KS) introduced an amendment to the stimulus bill on Saturday night to get rid of this onerous provision, which unfortunately was defeated by a margin of 43-54, with only 2 Republicans voting no to people of faith. (Christian Coalition of America)
· This bill, with its great sections of pork, needs your response. Please contact your senators, praying beforehand that your message will be received. The president has used the bill to engender fear, but we know that with God there is no fear. Please share the information you have about this bill with your family, friends, and neighbors.
· "Blow the trumpet in Zion, And sound an alarm in My holy mountain! Let all the inhabitants of the land tremble; For the day of the LORD is coming, For it is at hand:" (Joel 2:1)

Hilda Solis (Secretary of Labor); David Ogden (Deputy Attorney General)
Another of Barack Obama's cabinet nominees has been sidetracked by tax problems. Hilda Solis' nomination to be Secretary of Labor was set for a Senate committee vote yesterday. The vote was delayed after press reports indicated that her husband's business owed thousands of dollars in back taxes and had outstanding state and county liens going back more than a decade. But even more troubling is the nomination of David Ogden to be Deputy Attorney General. According to numerous press reports, Ogden has been a prominent attorney for the pornography industry. He sued the Library of Congress when it wanted to stop carrying pornographic magazines in Braille. He went to court to overturn a law that required schools and public libraries to use Internet content filters to protect children from online pornography. And, he represented the interests of the porn industry in a more recent lawsuit that sought to strike down a law intended to combat child pornography. The law required porn producers to verify and document that their "models" were at least 18-years-old. (Gary Bauer; edited)
· When have we seen such a parade of offensive behaviors presented to the American public to be advisers to the President at the Cabinet level? PRAISE THE Lord that the media has revealed the offenses of many of these nominees. Whatever happened to integrity in people's character? Pray that the President and his administration will exercise greater wisdom in naming choices for his cabinet in days ahead.
· "Words of the wise, spoken quietly, should be heard Rather than the shout of a ruler of fools. Wisdom is better than weapons of war; But one sinner destroys much good." (Ecclesiastes 9: 17,18)

Barack Obama's nominee for Solicitor General, Elena Kagan, is the radical attorney who fought in the federal courts against the legislation introduced by American hero and now deceased Congressman Jerry Solomon, a Korean War veteran, and signed into law by a Democrat president, Bill Clinton, to allow military recruiters to meet with students and to allow the Reserved Officers' Training Corps (ROTC) on campuses around the country. All 9 members of the United States Supreme Court, including the four left- wingers on the court, disagreed with Elena Kagan's arguments against Solomon's law. The court ruled constitutional the law which stated that schools could refuse military recruiters and the ROTC program on their campuses, but then they would be denied federal funds. Yet, that choice was not good enough for Kagan and she went on her crusade against the military. During a time in history when America is still in two major wars in the Mideast, Obama and his appointees cannot put American military in a weakened position by putting obstacles before military recruiters on high school and college campuses. Additionally, with her extreme left-wing viewpoints, it is extremely doubtful that Kagan will fulfill the duties of the United States Solicitor General; that is to defend the United States Constitution and all federal laws before the United States Supreme Court.

Somehow, Elena Kagan was elevated to become dean of the Harvard Law School. If she is confirmed by the Senate -- with her radical anti-military viewpoints -- she will be in no position to defend the Solomon law in the federal court system or any other law protecting the United States military and the American people. Many analysts believe that if the Senate confirms Kagan, she will immediately be amongst the short list for Obama's first Supreme Court nomination. (Christian Coalition of America)
· As above, pray for wisdom for the Obama administration as each candidate undergoes a vetting process for eligibility to serve the White House. May it be that our military is, indeed, honored and held in the highest esteem by ALL who will serve on the cabinet of this new president!
· "If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him." (James 1:5 NIV)

A political battle has erupted over next year's census with Republican lawmakers protesting President Obama's decision to take a bigger role in supervising the process. The Census Bureau director, who reports to the commerce secretary, now also will keep the White House directly in the loop. The White House says it is following a historical precedent and that this simply shows that the census is a priority for the president. But Republicans say it looks like a political power grab. "The United States census should remain independent of politics," House Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, said. "It should not be directed by political operatives working out of the White House." "I'm very concerned," Rep. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., told FOX News. "The Census Bureau has worked for decades to get rid of the cronyism and the partisan politics that had permeated that agency. "And they have done it by bringing professionalism to the agency and making certain that individuals that came there went through a very thorough process. Anytime there is an administration that will tamper with that, this is a concern to anyone." Blackburn, a member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, says the committee will hold hearings to investigate the change.

The census count is supposed to be a non-partisan process. But it also helps to determine how congressional lines are drawn. And it shows the demographic changes of the nation of the past 10 years, which could shift billions of dollars in federal funding for things like schools and roads and job training. Some Republicans suspect this could be a move by the White House to gerrymander those political boundaries so they benefit Democratic candidates. The move comes after some advocates worried that Sen. Judd Gregg, R-N.H., Obama's nominee for commerce secretary, wouldn't push hard for a count of Hispanics and other minorities in the census. Boehner said the White House oversight "appears to be motivated by politics" because Gregg has been picked by Obama to take over the Commerce Department. But Obama officials insist they're simply returning to the model used under President Clinton. "I think the historical precedent of this is there's a director of the census that works for the secretary of commerce, the president and also works closely with the White House to ensure a timely and accurate count," White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said. (Fox News)

· What has happened is that the president has moved the reporting of the census to Emanuel Rahm, his chief of staff. In fact, the reporting of the census findings do not have to be reported to either the president nor the Secretary of Commerce. The Constitution directs the reporting to the people. Here again we find questions about the President's following the Constitution, which he swore an oath to uphold in front of the world. Pray that enough protests will be forthcoming so that the Constitution will be followed as written by our Founding Fathers.
· "Therefore He raised His hand in an oath against them, To overthrow them in the wilderness," (Psalm 106:26)

The Obama administration is considering whether to shift the management of nuclear weapons production to the Pentagon from the Energy Department, a step that would end more than 60 years of civilian control over nuclear bomb manufacture. The goal would be to better focus the Energy Department on energy research, production and conservation, central priorities of the new administration.The White House has ordered the Defense Department and the Energy Department to study the costs and the benefits of transferring two national laboratories that design weapons, the sprawling Nevada site where they can be tested and all or part of four major plants around the country that build and maintain bombs and store weapons fuel.

Changing the status quo would doubtless raise concerns among some, and Congress might not go along. . . Spencer Abraham, energy secretary under President George W. Bush, noted that the weapons program was now under the control of a quasi- autonomous agency, the National Nuclear Security Administration, and that "it's not an agency the secretary is expected to oversee in a day-to-day fashion." Transferring it now, he said, "would be a distraction for an Energy Department trying to jump- start energy work." (New York Times)
· While there may be perfectly legitimate reasons for transferring the building of bombs to the Pentagon, the antennae of doubt rise up when we realize that the President's administration has been so quick to jump on this action, taking place less than 3 weeks after the Inauguration. Please pray caution and wisdom into this transfer.
· "Also it shall be, when he sits on the throne of his kingdom, that he shall write for himself a copy of this law in a book, from the one before the priests, the Levites. And it shall be with him, and he shall read it all the days of his life, that he may learn to fear the LORD his God and be careful to observe all the words of this law and these statutes, that his heart may not be lifted above his brethren, that he may not turn aside from the commandment to the right hand or to the left, and that he may prolong his days in his kingdom, he and his children in the midst of Israel." (Deuteronomy 17:18-20)

President Obama plans to order a sweeping overhaul of the National Security Council, expanding its membership and increasing its authority to set strategy across a wide spectrum of international and domestic issues.The result will be a "dramatically different" NSC from that of the Bush administration or any of its predecessors since the forum was established after World War II to advise the president on diplomatic and military matters, according to national security adviser James L. Jones, who described the changes in an interview. "The world that we live in has changed so dramatically in this decade that organizations that were created to meet a certain set of criteria no longer are terribly useful," he said.

The new structure, to be outlined in a presidential directive and a detailed implementation document by Jones, will expand the NSC's reach far beyond the range of traditional foreign policy issues and turn it into a much more elastic body, with Cabinet and departmental seats at the table -- historically occupied only by the secretaries of defense and state -- determined on an issue-by-issue basis. Jones said the directive will probably be completed this week. New NSC directorates will deal with such department- spanning 21st-century issues as cybersecurity, energy, climate change, nation-building and infrastructure. Many of the functions of the Homeland Security Council, established as a separate White House entity by President Bush after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, may be subsumed into the expanded NSC, although it is still undetermined whether elements of the HSC will remain as a separate body within the White House. (MSNBC) Read more .

· Although it is "classic" for any new administration to enter into office with a series of "sweeping changes" in hand, this administration beats all the others in the speed with which these sweeping changes are being proposed and implemented. Only God knows the full agenda behind all of these clues; pray that, as the pieces fall into place for this new team, each one would be in the center of God's will, and would serve the best interests of the American people.
· "The effectual, fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much." (James 5:16)

The Defense Department is forming a civilian expeditionary workforce that will be trained and equipped to deploy overseas in support of military missions worldwide, according to department officials. The intent of the program "is to maximize the use of the civilian workforce to allow military personnel to be fully utilized for operational requirements," according to a Defense Department statement. Deputy Defense Secretary Gordon England signed Defense Department Directive 1404.10, which outlines and provides guidance about the program on Jan. 23. Certain duty positions may be designated by the various Defense Department components to participate in the program. If a position is designated, the employee will be asked to sign an agreement that he will deploy if called upon to do so. If the employee does not wish to deploy, every effort will be made to reassign the employee to a non - deploying position. (American Forces Press Service) Read more
· What is this measure about? Evidently, the Defense Departmnet has determined a need for retired and discharged personnel to be available to be sent either overseas or deployed here in the USA for assignments not yet specified. Our antennae are up and quivering. Pray that the duties of such a workforce are clarified and used for purposes that are pleasing to the Lord. If not, pray that this workforce will never see any duties and will never be established -- except on paper.
· "And whatever you do, do it heartily, as unto the Lord and not to men." (Colossians 3:23)

Bill creates detention camps in U.S. for 'emergencies'Rep. Alcee L. Hastings, D-Fla., has introduced to the House of Representatives a new bill, H.R. 645, calling for the secretary of homeland security to establish no fewer than six national emergency centers for corralling civilians on military installations. According to the text of the proposed bill, the purpose of the National Emergency Centers is "to provide temporary housing, medical, and humanitarian assistance to individuals and families dislocated due to an emergency or major disaster."

Three additional purposes are specified in the text of the proposed legislation:
· To provide centralized locations for the purposes of training and ensuring the coordination of federal, state and local first responders;
· To provide centralized locations to improve the coordination of preparedness, response and recovery efforts of government, private, not-for-profit entities and faith-based organizations;
· To meet other appropriate needs, as defined by the secretary of homeland security.
(Read more)(To read the full text of this bill, go here.)

· Please "pray without ceasing" over this bill, asking that it die in committee. May H.R. 645 never see the light of day on the floors of the House or the Senate in our U.S. Congress. Amen.
· 'Thus far you shall come, but no farther; And here shall your proud waves stop' . . . (Job 38:11)

This Week, Worship Our Lord As . . .

HOPE OF ISRAEL (Meekvay Yisrael)
"O LORD, the hope of Israel, All who forsake You shall be ashamed." (Jer. 17:13 NKJV)

You are my Hope, O God of Israel! My sorrow may endure for the evening, but joy comes in the morning. You are my Hope; when all else fails, there is You. Help me never to give up on Your Wonderful Name.

(Taken from: Intimate Moments with the Hebrew Names of God, by Barri Cae Malin and Shmuel Wolkenfeld; Bridge-Logos Publishers; Gainesville, FL, 32614. ISBN: 0-88270-801-5)