Friday, October 9, 2009

CHPP Daily Brief - October 9, 2009

In This Issue
• The Daily Brief
• The Middle East in Focus
• The Daily Jot
• House Approves Hate Crimes Measure
• Democrats Mask-a-Raid on Troop Bill
• House Republicans Stand Strong Against 'Hate-Crimes' Ploy
• The Troops Still Wait
• Thoughts on Prayer

Capitol Hill Prayer Partners
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Herndon, VA 20172-1970

The Daily Brief - Friday, October 9, 2009

"And great earthquakes shall be in divers places, and famines, and pestilences; and fearful sights and great signs shall there be from heaven . . ." (Luke 21:11)

The Daily Brief

1. House Votes to Add Sexual Orientation to Law on Hate Crimes - Washington Post

The House of Representatives on Thursday approved a bill that would broaden the definition of federal hate crimes to include attacks based on sexual orientation, legislation that would bring major changes to a law enacted in the days after the 1968 assassination of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.

Please note more information on the hate crimes measure later in this brief.

- We pray for a wide-spread awakening throughout this nation for Your children to cry out against officials who are advancing their agendas. May the elected officials be alerted that their actions are in defiance of public opinion, and may they begin to work for the good of the people, not for the profit of special interests.

- "For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed the evil thoughts, fornications, thefts, murders, adulteries, deeds of coveting and wickedness, as well as deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride and foolishness. All these evil things proceed from within and defile the man." (Mark 7:21-23)

2. Obama's Nobel Is Premature, Historians and Political Scientists Say - Fox News

Giving President Obama the Nobel Peace Prize is a "premature canonization" and an "embarrassment" to the process of designating a laureate, a presidential historian says. "The jury is still out as to what his presidency is going to add up to," Fred Greenstein, author and professor of politics emeritus at Princeton University, told "It's more of an embarrassment to the Nobel process." President Obama said Friday he was "most surprised and deeply humbled" to win the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize, adding that he accepts the honor as "a call to action to confront the common challenges of the 21st century." In a brief statement in the White House Rose Garden on Friday, the president said he does not "view it as a recognition of my own accomplishments," but rather as a recognition of goals he has set for the United States and the world.

- We pray that revelations of You will and Your wisdom will sweep this world so that Your people will be awake to the truth. We know that You will use this award for Your glory.

- "They have healed the brokenness of My people superficially, Saying, 'Peace, peace,' But there is no peace." (Jeremiah 6:14)

3. The President's 3 Options on Afghanistan Troops - ABC News

The troop request on the desks of the president and his national security team outlines three options, according to a source familiar with the document. One path is not to send anymore troops to Afghanistan, considered a "high risk option." The second is to send 40,000 troops, and the third calls for a major increase in troops, far more than 40,000. Gen. Stanley McChrystal, according to the source, recommends the "middle" option of 40,000 as the minimum number needed to have a chance of success in Afghanistan (surely understanding that not only would the much higher number be impossible to get approved but impossible to support, given a military that is stretched thin). The White House, however, is downplaying the troop numbers as the focus of the president's deliberations. "The troop resource request has certainly come up," a White House aide tells ABC News. "But the larger focus is strategy." And that focus is clearly shifting away from the Taliban in Afghanistan to al Qaeda in Pakistan. "The president has a different obligation than his commanders," said the aide. "He needs to see this in a global context."

- We seek wisdom for officials in the administration and pray that the military commanders will make decisions that will be in the best interest of the soldiers and of the nation as a whole. Please give Your strength, physical, emotional, and spiritual, to all the men and women who are fighting for this nation and for their families who are burdened at home.

- "Then Jonathan said to the young man who was carrying his armor, 'Come and let us cross over to the garrison of these uncircumcised; perhaps the LORD will work for us, for the LORD is not restrained to save by many or by few.'" (1 Samuel 14:6)

4. Embassy Row: Gay Ambassador - Washington Times

Gay advocates are praising President Obama for nominating an openly gay man to serve as ambassador to New Zealand and Samoa, however, Samoan officials might not welcome the news because homosexuality is illegal in the South Pacific island nation. The Samoan mission at the United Nations, which also serves as Samoa's embassy to the United States, was unaware Thursday of the nomination, which the White House announced Wednesday evening. "We are still waiting to hear from the U.S. Embassy in Samoa," a diplomat at the mission said.

- May the nation of Samoa be strong in its defense of its sovereignty, and may the State Department be more sensitive to the beliefs of nations before choosing diplomats.

- "But actually, I wrote to you not to associate with any so-called brother if he is an immoral person, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or a swindler-- not even to eat with such a one." (1 Corinthians 5:11)

5. Controversial Private 'Police' Force Quits Effort to Take Over Montana Jail - Fox News

A mysterious "police" force that has one small Montana city on edge apparently is packing its bags and heading home. The California-based security firm, run by an ex- convict with a history of fraud convictions, is dropping its purported bid to take over a Montana jail - days after state officials launched an investigation and several key participants backed away from the controversial proposal.

- Thank You Lord that this group has been exposed and that the people of this town have been protected.

- "For wicked men are found among My people, They watch like fowlers lying in wait; They set a trap, They catch men." (Jeremiah 5:26)

6. Iran warns against attack - AFP

Iran issued another warning on Friday against any attack on the Islamic republic, while claiming its talks with world powers over its controversial nuclear programme were "a success and a victory." Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei's deputy representative to the elite Revolutionary Guards, Mojtaba Zolnour, said Tehran will "blow up the heart" of Israel if attacked by the Jewish state or the United States. "Even if one American or Zionist missile hits our land, before the dust is settled, Iranian missiles will blow up the heart of Israel," state news agency IRNA quoted Zolnour as saying.

- You are mighty to save Israel. We pray that the nations of the world will begin to back Israel against those who seek to destroy her.

- "They have said, 'Come, and let us wipe them out as a nation, That the name of Israel be remembered no more.'" (Psalm 83:4)

Please read all of Psalm 83 and mediate on it.

7. A. Indian embassy targeted in Kabul suicide attack - CNN

A suicide car bomb attack near the Indian Embassy in Afghanistan's capital killed 17 people and wounded at least 63 Thursday, Afghan officials said. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the bombing.

B. Pakistan vows to 'hit back' after bomb kills 49 - AP

Pakistan vowed to launch a new offensive against militant strongholds along the Afghan border after a suicide bomber blew up a car near a crowded outdoor market on Friday, killing 49 people in the bloodiest attack to hit the country in six months.

- May the people of India, Afghanistan, and Pakistan be comforted by You in their grief. We pray for Your covering over the military and police forces who are battling the enemy.

- "The LORD will go forth like a warrior, He will arouse His zeal like a man of war. He will utter a shout, yes, He will raise a war cry. He will prevail against His enemies." (Isaiah 42:13)

8. French Arrest Physicist Suspected of Al-Qaida Link - AP

A physicist working at the world's largest atom smasher has been arrested on suspicion of links to al-Qaida, adding to the woes of the $10 billion project that ceased operation a year ago - just days after its celebrated start up. The scientist, arrested in France, is suspected of involvement with Al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb, a French official said Friday. The North African group regularly targets Algerian government forces and occasionally attacks foreigners.

- You bring into the light those who would plot evil in darkness. We thank You for the security officers whose hard work and attention is exposing hidden dangers.

- "A false witness will not go unpunished, And he who tells lies will perish." (Proverbs 19:9)

9. Iranian nuke defections offer peek at shadow war - Haaretz

The latest reports of senior nuclear scientists defecting from Iran to the West have caused considerable embarrassment and concern to the regime in Tehran. The reports first broke in Londown-based newspaper Al-Sharq al-Awsat, and were followed up in the Iranian media. The reports suggest that at least one scientist, Shahram Amiri, who worked on nuclear research and development, defected several months ago to the west during the hajj pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia. One more person, whose identity and specialization remains unclear - he may have been a scientist or held another key position in Iran's nuclear program - may have also defected, this time during a visit to Georgia. It is also not yet clear what types of information the defectors had access to, or to what extent they had important positions in the Iranian nuclear program. However, the fact that Iran's Foreign Minister, Manouchehr Mottaki accused the United States of involvement in the disappearance of Amiri, and of Saudi Arabia of responsibility for his fate, suggests that the reports are well founded.

- Lord, we pray You will continue to open the doors to freedom for those who are fleeing Iran. May the intelligence services of the US and the West use the knowledge of these defectors to protect the innocent.

- "Rescue me, O LORD, from evil men; Preserve me from violent men." (Psalm 140:1)

The Middle East in Focus

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

"For Zion's sake I will not keep silent" (Isaiah 62:1)

1. Israel on alert as Abbas pressed on 'third intifada' - World Tribune

Israel has been placed on alert for the prospect of widespread Palestinian violence throughout the West Bank. Officials said Israel's military, police and intelligence services were ordered on high alert after the military has assessed that the ruling Fatah movement, in cooperation with elements within the Palestinian Authority, were organizing civil unrest as well as ambushes on Israeli soldiers and civilians. Officials said PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas has been pressed by senior members of Fatah to approve what was termed a "third intifada," or uprising.

2. Palestinians urged to 'mobilize' in defense of al-Aksa Mosque - Jerusalem Post

The Fatah Central Council has called for a general strike in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip on Friday in protest of Israel's "measures against al-Aksa Mosque."

3. Christian Zionists back 'united Jerusalem under Israeli sovereignty' - Ynet News

This week, The International Christian Embassy Jerusalem (ICEJ) is marking the 30th consecutive year in which Christians from all corners of the globe have ascended to Jerusalem to celebrate the biblical Feast of Tabernacles.

4. Jerusalem Clashes Set Back Talk Efforts - Wall Street Journal

Palestinian demonstrators, angry at Israeli-imposed restrictions on access to a revered mosque, clashed with police in Jerusalem, capping a week of setbacks to efforts to revive peace talks.

5. Israeli foreign minister: No peace deal now - USA Today

Israel's foreign minister declared Thursday that there is no chance of reaching a final accord with the Palestinians any time soon, casting a pall over the U.S. Mideast envoy's latest effort to get peace talks moving again.

The Daily Jot

The Nobel Appeasement Prize Goes To Obama

And the winner of the Nobel Peace Prize goes to--drum roll please--the man who occupies the Oval Office. Yes, you read me right, Obama has won the Nobel Peace Prize. April Fools Day has come six months early for some, six months late for others. The Nobel prize is now officially on the list of grand political jokes. They say he won it because of reaching out to the Muslim world, banning interrogation techniques that might be considered torture, promoting peace by bringing a new global monetary policy to the nations, and deciding not to deploy missiles in Europe. He also has made a public commitment to end the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

But Americans may find Obama's actions far less peace oriented. Perhaps a new name for the Nobel prize is in order--the Nobel Appeasement Prize. If this were the case, Obama would win hands down in a way that would engender an all-knowing smile from Neville Chamberlain emanating from his eternal post in the depths of the pit of Hades. Appeasing the Muslim world with a landmark speech in Cairo to a bulk group of terrorists and terrorist sympathizers; extending the olive branch to the world's foremost sponsor of terrorism in Iran; threatening the peace loving state of Israel that its American ally's efforts against Iranian nuclear proliferation is tied directly to Israel's acceptance of a Palestinian terrorist state. . .

. . . releasing terrorists into society by closing the terrorist prison in Cuba; restoring diplomatic relations with the second foremost sponsor of terrorism, Syria; scuttling a planned defensive missile program in Poland and the Czech Republic that was designed to defend against a future terrorist missile launch from Iran; Ignoring general's advice by understaffing the military in Afghanistan while brave American soldiers are dying in increasing attacks by terrorists; yielding the sovereignty of the American economy to the International Monetary Fund; supporting a dictator for life wannabe in Honduras over its Constitutional Republic; banning mission critical terrorist identification and tracking techniques. . .

As an American, I do not feel too peaceful about the actions of this administration. Sources I have interviewed who are involved or were involved in national security say that the Islamic terrorist network is emboldened by the actions of this White House and that by banning some very critical terrorist monitoring practices, it is now not a question of "if" a terrorist strike will occur on American soil, but "when." The question of King David should be welling up in every American's heart from Psalm 94:16, "Who will rise up for me against the evildoers? Or who will stand up for me against the workers of iniquity?" Appeasement is not peace. And only fools believe peace is about giving in or siding with evil.

Bill Wilson
Word of Life Ministry

House Approves Hate Crimes Measure

'Hate Crimes' Measure Violates Equal Justice Under the Law, Infringes on Free Speech and Religious Liberty

Washington D.C. - Family Research Council President Tony Perkins released the following statement after the House of Representatives approved a "hate crimes" provision within the defense authorization bill:

"By granting a special protection for a particular group, we diminish protections and thereby penalize everyone else. This is the ironic but unavoidable result of measures like the thought-crimes bill passed today," said Perkins.

"This measure is about giving special rights based solely on sexual behavior. We applaud the 146 Members of Congress of both parties who had the courage to oppose this otherwise popular bill because it was burdened with this irrelevant provision. It violates the principle of equal justice under the law and also threatens to infringe on the free speech rights of the American people.

"Congress should protect all Americans equally and not provide special protections to a few politically favored groups. A vote in favor of so-called 'hate crimes' legislation is a direct violation of the Constitution's Equal Protection Clause, since all violent crimes are hate crimes, and every victim is equally important. All of our citizens deserve equal justice under the law. Do we somehow care less about victims violently assaulted in the act of robbery or during a personal dispute than we do about those assaulted because they belong in a federally designated, politically motivated category?

"This also sets us on a slippery slope toward serious infringements of the freedom of speech and freedom of religion. 'Hate crime' legislation will lay the legal foundation and framework for investigating, prosecuting and persecuting pastors, business owners, and anyone else whose actions reflect their faith," Perkins concluded.

Democrats Mask-a-Raid on Troop Bill

The American military is trying to win two conflicts abroad, so the last thing it needs is to be deployed in a culture war to legitimize homosexuality. Unfortunately, that didn't stop House leaders from piggybacking on a military funding bill to pass their pet project: "hate crimes." Yesterday, the House voted 281 to 146 in favor of extending special federal protection to homosexuals as part of the $680 billion Defense Authorization bill, a maneuver that Rep. Tom Price (R-Ga.) called a "disgrace." The Democratic majority "should be ashamed at the way it has used the needs of our men and women in uniform as a platform for a partisan agenda," he said. Republicans tried to stop Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) from hijacking the bill on Wednesday but failed by 56 votes from stripping hate crimes from H.R. 2647.

Under the charge of House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio), 131 Republicans and 15 Democrats opposed the bill, but in the end it wasn't enough to stop Nancy Pelosi. After the vote, Rep. Boehner was frank in his disappointment--not only because hate crimes passed, but because liberals used an otherwise popular military bill to infringe on the very freedom our soldiers are fighting for." This is radical social policy that ... is being put on the defense authorization bill, on the backs of our soldiers, because they probably can't pass it on its own," he told reporters. The first prize on a very long wish list for homosexuals, "hate crimes" now heads to the Senate for approval. Contact your Senators today and ask them to stop the real crime: leaders who abuse their power to advance irrelevant special interests. (Family Research Council)

House Republicans Stand Strong Against 'Hate-Crimes' Ploy

SUMMARY: Conservatives call it 'inappropriate' to place the language on a defense bill.

The inclusion by Democrats of so-called hate-crimes language in the Defense Authorization bill brought a strong objection from conservatives. Because of that controversial amendment, 131 Republicans took the unusual action of voting against the entire bill on Thursday. The bill passed. It now goes to the Senate.

Rep. Mike Pence called it "inappropriate" to use a defense bill "as a vehicle for divisive, liberal social policies, wholly unrelated to our country's national security." "However, the Majority in this Congress has cynically included hate crimes provisions in this legislation that threaten the very freedoms of speech and religion that draw our soldiers into the uniform of this nation," the chairman of the House Republican Conference said.

In urging his colleagues to vote against the bill, Pence added that violent attacks are already illegal, and there is no evidence that the "underlying violent crimes at issue here are not being fully and aggressively prosecuted under current law." "Therefore, in a practical sense, hate crimes laws serve no practical purpose," the Indiana Republican said, "and instead serve to penalize people for their thoughts, beliefs and attitudes."

Minority Whip Eric Cantor also voted against the bill. The Virginia Republican called it a "political ploy." "Those who support the federal criminalization of 'hate crimes' should demand that it be removed from this legislation and be considered solely upon its own merit, not that of our national defense," he said. "I believe that all Americans should be protected from violent crime and viewed equally under the law, and the truth of the matter is that all violent crimes are hateful." . . .

Ashley Horne, federal policy analyst for Focus on the Family Action, praised the representatives who voted against the bill because of the inclusion of hate-crimes language. "We especially want to thank those who have voted against this direct attack on religious liberty all along the way," she said. "It's encouraging to see so many take a principled stand, even voting against a bill they would ordinarily support." (CitizenLink)

The Troops Still Wait

With each passing day, American forces in Afghanistan wait for Barack Obama's "new" war strategy. It has become clear that Obama is receiving advice from two very different sides. On one side, there is General Stanley McChrystal, appointed by Obama, suggesting that we increase the troop levels in Afghanistan by at least 40,000. On the other side are Vice President Joe Biden and Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel suggesting that the troop levels be reduced. They want the U.S. to focus on using air power, while our troops withdraw to Afghan cities.

Obama says he won't make a decision until he settles on a strategy. Today in the Washington Post, columnist Charles Krauthammer takes that excuse apart. Here is an excerpt:

"No strategy? On March 27, flanked by his secretaries of defense and state, the president said this: 'Today I'm announcing a comprehensive new strategy for Afghanistan and Pakistan.' He then outlined a civilian- military counterinsurgency campaign to defeat the Taliban in Afghanistan. And to emphasize his seriousness, the president made clear that he had not arrived casually at this decision. The new strategy he declared, 'marks the conclusion of a careful policy review.'

"Conclusion, mind you. Not the beginning. Not a process. The conclusion of an extensive review, the president assured the nation, that included consultation with military commanders and diplomats, with the governments of Afghanistan and Pakistan, with our NATO allies and members of Congress."

Krauthammer points out that Obama has already developed an Afghan strategy. But commanders on the ground are now requesting reinforcements, so Obama is stalling a surge in U.S. forces to Afghanistan. There is no excuse for Obama not to listen to our military leaders. It appears he is letting petty politics influence his decision on the surge, and the ones who are suffering are the brave men and women serving in harm's way waiting for the reinforcements to arrive. (Gary Bauer; End-of-Day; Oct. 9, 2009)

Thoughts on Prayer

"A servant of the Lord stands bodily before men, but mentally he is knocking at the gates of heaven with prayer." - John Climacus