Monday, April 16, 2012

On Capitol Hill This Week Volume XIX, Number 10

Capitol Hill Prayer Partners
"Partners in Prayer for the Nation"
P.O. Box 5152
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On Capitol Hill This Week Volume XIX, Number 10a
April 16 - 20, 2012

"But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come." (John 16:13)




House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman John Mica (R-Fla.) said Tuesday that he would hold a hearing as soon as possible to explore Monday's report that the General Services Administration (GSA) held an $800,000 conference in Las Vegas in 2010.

Mica's announcement was a reaction to a Monday report from GSA's inspector general on the conference, which led to GSA Administrator Martha Johnson's resignation and the firing of several employees.

"It is outrageous that this agency, which costs the taxpayers billions because it's sitting on its assets, would spend nearly a million dollars on a Vegas junket," Mica said. "The tab even included a clown for entertainment. This is just the tip of the iceberg. We have been trying to get the administrative costs from the agency and now we see why they have been stonewalling."

Mica did not set a firm date for the hearing, but said it could take place the week of April 16, when the House returns from recess. (The Hill) Read more.

- UPDATE: This hearing is taking place today, with more hearings scheduled this week. Pray that all hidden facts will come to light in this scandal. Thank you.

- "For there is nothing hidden which will not be revealed, nor has anything been kept secret but that it should come to light."
(Mark 4:22)


House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman John Mica (R-Fla.) on Thursday asked the General Services Administration (GSA) to explain an internal program that awarded $200,000 worth of iPods, gift cards and other items for what Mica said were "questionable reasons at best."

Mica's inquiry follows his announcement that his committee will hold a hearing on a $800,000 conference that GSA held in Las Vegas in 2010. That conference was reported by GSA's Inspector General earlier this week, which prompted GSA Administrator Martha Johnson to resign. Mica said he learned of GSA's worker rewards program - called the "Hats Off program" - while preparing for that hearing. The letter to GSA, also signed by Rep. Jeff Denham (R-Calif.), asked GSA's Inspector General to provide its internal report on the Hats Off program in time for the April 19 hearing that the committee will hold on GSA. Mica's committee has jurisdiction over GSA's Public Buildings Service, which is where the Hats Off program was run. (The Hill) Read more.

- Pray that all facts about the lavish spending habits of the General Services Agency are exposed in these hearings, and that those who are accountable be brought to justice for this egregious abuse of our taxpayer monies. Pray!

- "He uncovers deep things out of darkness, And brings the shadow of death to light."
(Job 12:22)


The federal General Services Administration, under fire for lavish spending on a 2010 Las Vegas-area conference, could become the focus of a criminal probe. The agency's Inspector General's Office has asked the Justice Department to probe the scandal, congressional sources confirmed to Fox News.

The request specifically targets a GSA official already on leave for his role in lavish agency spending, the Associated Press reported, citing an unnamed congressional committee official. The source said it isn't known whether the request is directly connected to the activities of the GSA executive, Jeffrey Neely, in the agency's $823,000 spending spree for the 2010 conference.A senior executive at the GSA, Neely was largely responsible for the Las Vegas conference.

An internal government memo released Friday shows GSA officials had been aware for months of a spending problem at the agency. A Justice Department spokesman declined to comment when Fox News asked about the referral. (Fox News) Read more.

- -Lord God, we are appalled at the misuse of funds by this department when so many Americans are having to cut back financially. Thank You for bringing this to light and may all other government extravagances be uncovered, even to the highest offices in the land. Blow with Your wind through Washington DC and bring down arrogance and lack of accountability.

- "Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall." (Proverbs 16:18)


Maybe you've heard of it and maybe you haven't, but in Bluffdale, Utah . . . the NSA is building a one-million-square-foot data collection center - five times the size of the U.S. capital. Despite immense secrecy, and construction workers with Top Secret clearances, news of the project made it to the pages of Wired last month. Intelligence authority James Bamford wrote that the center is part of President Bush's "total information awareness" program that was killed by Congress in 2003 in response to public outrage over its potential for invading Americans privacy. One senior intelligence official formerly involved with the project told Bamford "this is more than just a data center," that it's a code breaking megalopolis the likes of which the world has never seen.

Several years ago the NSA made a major leap in breaking complex encryptions used in everything from "financial information, stock transactions, business deals, foreign military and diplomatic secrets, legal documents, confidential personal communications." The official concluded by saying "Everybody's a target; everybody with communication is a target."

The story caused such a stir that the NSA's chief General Keith Alexander was called before Congress two weeks ago to testify about the project and categorically denied the facility will be used to spy on American citizens. "The NSA does not have the ability to do that in the United States," Alexander told Georgia Rep. Hank Johnson. "We're not authorized to do that, nor do we have the equipment in the United States to collect that kind of information."

While it's impossible to know the specifics of the work to be done in Bluffdale, it's pretty clear the NSA does have the power to snoop on Americans at will, despite what General Alexander said to Congress. (Business Insider) Read more.

- Our Gracious Lord, we ask that You would reveal all secrets pertaining to this spy facility concerning the spying on law-abiding Americans. May it only be used to discover real threats to our country. We cast down efforts to take away our freedoms by totalitarian minded politicians in the name of Jesus. Lord, put up a bulwark against this threat to the American ideals and way of life. Keep Your people safe, O Lord.

- "Hide me from the secret counsel of the wicked; from the insurrection of the workers of iniquity:" (Psalms 64:2)


A Federal court in New York heard arguments Thursday for a preliminary injunction against the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), the bill signed by Obama that legislates for the 'indefinite detention' of American citizens without trial. U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest heard testimony from seven witnesses including MIT professor Noam Chomsky, Pentagon Papers source Daniel Ellsberg and Pulitzer Prize winning journalist, author and Middle East expert Chris Hedges.

Hedges himself filed the class action lawsuit claiming that the 'indefinite detention' provision of the legislation, otherwise known as the 'Homeland Battlefield Bill', could see him sent to Guantanamo Bay simply for doing his job, and at the very least would have a "chilling effect" on the work of journalists and activists.

The controversial legislation, signed into law by Obama on New Year's Eve, allows American citizens to be abducted and held in a detention camp anywhere in the world without trial under section 1031. Although Obama indicated in a signing statement attached to the bill that he would not use it to indefinitely detain American citizens, it was the Obama administration itself that requested the provision be worded so it would apply to US citizens. (Infowars) Read more.

- God, we lift this matter up to You to dismantle and diffuse with the overcoming intelligence of Almighty God. When the truth is spoken, written or declared God stands with the ones who stand for truth and the woe of God be upon those who punish them. Father, defend freedom of speech here in America so that the people not be deceived by lies. Those who lie and deceive will be rewarded justly both here and the hereafter when we all stand before God and give an account of our works on earth. In Jesus' Name.

- "Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on Him, If you continue in my word, then are you my disciples indeed; and you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." (John 8:31-32)


The presidential race has reset once again with the suspension of Rick Santorum's presidential bid. Former Senator Santorum made a serious and principled run for the GOP nomination, and against incredible odds won 11 state primaries on a minimalist budget. His campaign was fueled by grassroots activists and small contributions which responded to his message of strong families, economic opportunity, constitutional government and American exceptionalism.

Santorum's decision appears to have been based on a combination of the serious health issues faced by his 3 year old daughter, Bella, and ever increasing odds against winning the requisite number of delegates to secure the nomination. This latest change leaves former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney as the likely Republican nominee who will face President Barack Obama in November.

Please pray for little Bella Santorum as she seems to embody her father's fighting spirit in facing a variety of health challenges. Please also pray for Rick and Karen Santorum and their other children who gave up the privacy of family life for nearly a year. They publicly juggled the roles of candidate, spouse, parent, child and adult child of elderly parents with grace and equanimity while never seeming to lose their bearings.

Rick and Karen care deeply about this country and future generations to the point of putting themselves and their family out into the public square. The only payback for the personal attacks and lost privacy is knowing that they connected with millions of like-minded Americans and gave voice to their concerns. Ask God to shower them with a sense of satisfaction that they rose to the occasion and pray that He will guide their steps as they move forward in future endeavors. (Carol Bauer)

- As the country moves toward Election Day 2012 pray for ways that you can make a difference in the outcome. Ask God to show you how the country will look to your children and grandchildren depending on which worldview prevails. Then pray that He will give you the words and the opportunities to make an impact in the lives that you touch -- family, friends, neighbors, co-workers, fellow parishioners.

Impress upon pastors and church leaders the importance of being informed Christian citizens in an age when deception and misrepresentation come easy. Finally, pray for the United States that this historic election would result in a reaffirmation of our founding principles.

- "For the eyes of the Lord are toward the righteous, and His ears attend to their prayer." (I Peter 3:12)


[Note: James O'Keefe is the president of Project Veritas, with the stated mission to "investigate and expose corruption, dishonesty, self-dealing, waste, fraud, and other misconduct.]

James O'Keefe has struck again. In short, he went to the very polling place where Eric Holder (Hussein Obama's Attorney General) would vote [in the recent primary in Washington, D.C.] and proved that current voter identification and verification practices are so inadequate as to permit O'Keefe to accept a ballot and vote in Holder's name, had he a mind to do so. This is particularly incriminating since it is Holder who has done more than any other high official to purposefully undermine the voting process in this country.

Beginning with his contemptible decision to ignore the flagrant acts of voter intimidation perpetrated by members of the "New Black Panther" organization in Philadelphia in 2009, Holder has an unbroken track record of choosing to overlook criminal behavior based not on the real substance of the law or the nature of any breaches, but on whether or not the liberal agenda will be served or harmed by a strenuous legal response.

J. Christian Adams, formerly an attorney at the Voting Rights Section of the Department of Justice, eventually left his position and wrote an expose on the racial motivations which completely poisoned the department on Holder's watch. In his book, he grimly warned America that the end result of this violation of trust, if not appropriately addressed, would be "lawlessness." (GOPUSA) Read more.

- Dear Lord, we ask that You would protect those who uncover the result of bad policies. We ask that You cause this to focus the attention of Americans on this policy obviously geared to allow voting for those who do not Constitutionally qualify to vote. We decree and declare in the name of Jesus that this issue will be rectified before the general election in November so that Americans' REAL choices are elected. We come against all voter fraud being planned for November.

- "And they will deceive everyone his neighbour, and will not speak the truth: they have taught their tongue to speak lies, and weary themselves to commit iniquity."
(Jeremiah 9:5)


Sheriff Joe Arpaio says he's talked to members of Arizona's congressional delegation about his Cold Case Posse investigation, which has found probable cause that there was fraud in the creation of the birth documentation for Barack Obama released by the White House in 2011. The investigators also believe that Obama's Selective Service registration is a forgery, leading to the obvious question of what happens if Obama is ineligible for the presidency. But Arpaio's effort to persuade federal lawmakers apparently has fallen on deaf ears.

Now, tens of thousands, perhaps hundreds of thousands, of people are going to see whether Congress ignores their concerns, too. It's because of a new petition that has been launched demanding that the 112th Congress begin a "full and impartial investigation into the constitutional eligibility of Barack Hussein Obama."

In the first day it was available, some 1,000 people signed up every hour. That means a patriotic American was adding his or her name to the list every few seconds.

As WND reported, Arpaio and his Cold Case Posse conducted an extensive examination of documents released by the White House last April purported to be Obama's original, long-form birth certificate and Selective Service registration form, only to conclude there is probable cause the documents are forgeries. And the sheriff concluded there is probable cause that there was fraud in the presentation of the birth document image as a genuine document. . . (WorldNetDaily) Read more.

- Thank you Lord Jesus for the phone calls to Congress to seek honesty on this issue and for truth to come forth! May the phone calls continue to pressure Congress until the eligibility of this man to hold the office of president be investigated and settled truthfully. Lord, let the truth arise, in Jesus' Name, Amen and Amen!

- "The Lord also will be a refuge for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble. And those who know Your name will put their trust in You; for You, Lord, have not forsaken those who seek you." (Psalm 9:9-10)


It was Friday the 13. If you are superstitious, then the new Executive Order issued yesterday, "Supporting Safe and Responsible Development of Unconventional Domestic Natural Gas Resources" must give you pause.

The order states, "While natural gas production is carried out by private firms, and States are the primary regulators of onshore oil and gas activities, the Federal Government has an important role to play by regulating oil and gas activities on public and Indian trust lands, encouraging greater use of natural gas in transportation, supporting research and development aimed at improving the safety of natural gas development and transportation activities, and setting sensible, cost-effective public health and environmental standards to implement Federal law and augment State safeguards." An interagency working group is tasked to "facilitate coordinated Administration policy efforts to support safe and responsible unconventional domestic natural gas development." This working group bureaucracy will be chaired by the Director of the Domestic Policy Council and has several curious members that have no direct involvement with natural gas production . . .

The White House Blog explains this new bureaucracy as a step in eliminating "redundancy." What is there redundant about each state controlling and exploring their natural gas? The federal government is concerned, since natural gas volumetric exploration in 2011 was so large, it eclipsed the all-time high production record of 1973, it must "ensure that we can successfully tap this critical resource for decades to come, we must develop it safely and responsibly." Translation, we must control it and reduce its production so that our air and water are safe according to the EPA dictates. This is interesting because natural gas is one of the cleanest sources of energy. (By Dr. Ileana Johnson Paugh, Canada Free Press, Saturday, April 14, 2012) Read more.

- This EO is an extension of the one that was issued just last month, placing all of our resources under the control of the federal government. That EO is titled: "The National Defense Resources Preparedness Order." Now we have one that addresses our use and development of natural gas supplies. We wonder what will come next? Pray that both EO's will be overturned by the Hand of God and have no effect upon our people. Ask for a miracle. Pray!

- "Happy is he who has the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the Lord his God. . . The Lord opens the eyes of the blind; The Lord raises those who are bowed down; The Lord loves the righteous. The Lord watches over the strangers; He relieves the fatherless and widow; But the way of the wicked He turns upside down." (Psalm 146: 5,8,9)


The nation's unemployment rate fell to 8.2% based on data released Friday by the Department of Labor. According to the report, only 120,000 new jobs were created in March. Most economists were predicting more than 200,000 new jobs amid signs of an economic recovery.

But there was bad news buried in the report -- 164,000 Americans dropped out of the labor force last month. These folks are so discouraged that they quit looking for work. As a result, they no longer count when the bureaucrats tally the official unemployment rate.

Many Americans are frustrated that the government continues to report an improving unemployment rate when the number of workers is declining. Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA) wants to change that. He has introduced legislation that would require the government to include discouraged workers in its official unemployment statistic.

As Rep. Hunter recently explained, "We need to be realistic and focus our attention on the figure that provides the most accurate representation of national unemployment -- not the figure that under-represents the challenge we face." (Gary Bauer)

- Dear Lord, we thank You that there are Congressmen who seek to eliminate deceitful reporting of unemployment figures. We pray for favor for Rep. Hunter's bill requiring the accurate reporting of these figures, and we pray that this bill will pass in both houses and be signed into law. We bind up all efforts at deception to make certain elected officials look better at governing our country than they really are. Father, have mercy and provide for all who are currently unemployed or have been discouraged.

- "Those who cheat with dishonest weights and measures are detestable to the Lord your God." (Deuteronomy 25:16 NLT)


UN rights chief Navi Pillay on Thursday called for an "immediate investigation" into the circumstances surrounding the February death of an unarmed black US teen, shot by a neighborhood watchman. "As High Commissioner for Human Rights, I call for an immediate investigation," Pillay told reporters. "Justice must be done for the victim. It's not just this individual case. It calls into question the delivery of justice in all situations like this."

Neighborhood watch captain George Zimmerman, a white Hispanic, fatally shot 17-year-old Martin inside a gated community in the Florida town of Sanford on February 26. Pillay expressed shock that Zimmerman was not arrested right away, and expressed concern about Florida's "Stand Your Ground" law, which allows the use of deadly force in situations where there is a belief of a threat. "The law should operate equally in respect of all violations. I will be awaiting an investigation and prosecution and trial and of course reparations for the victims concerned," Pillay said. (AFP News)

Read more.

- Father, we plead for Your intervention in this case and that Your wisdom will be given to all who were involved in this tragedy. We ask that the false charges brought about by Pillay will be bound under the blood of Jesus and truth will prevail. We entrust the adjudication of this matter to our own judicial system, and not to that of an amorphous global court. We ask You, Lord, to please send an angel to stand beside George Zimmerman and validate his actions. In the Name of Jesus.

- "Be merciful unto me, O God: for man would swallow me up; he fighting daily oppresses me. What time I am afraid, I will trust in You. In God I will praise His word; in God I have put my trust; I will not fear what flesh can do unto me. Every day they wrest and twist my words; all their thoughts are against me for evil. When I cry unto God, then shall my enemies turn back: this I know; for God is for me."
(Psalm 56:1,3-9)


Two weeks ago, officials from the Egyptian Moslem Brotherhood conferred with members of the National Security Council at the White House. White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said that this was the new reality, with the Islamist group having become prominent in post-Mubarak Egypt. There is really no big news in this story, as the Obama Administration has actively worked to overthrow secular governments in the Middle East and to install Islamist regimes. (Religious Freedom Coaltion; AFP)

-Father in heaven, realizing that this group is quite entrenched in the White House without due acknowledgement being given to this godless group, we therefore lift them up to the all-seeing eyes of our God, and by the Holy Spirit ask that You move mightily upon each and every one of them by breaking their self-will and self-determination to serve the devil in all his fury against the United States of Christ. Break into their evil world by the holy power from heaven, and save their souls through the blood of Jesus Christ, that they turn away from darkness to embrace the loving love of the Savior, so they will spend eternity in heaven rather than follow evil and be eternally lost and away from God. Save their souls, my Father. In the Name of Jesus.

- "And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshiped his image. And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, and shall be tormented day and night forever and ever. These were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire."
(Revelation 19:20, 20:10-15)


The terror cells in the U.S. are being coordinated by Quds Force personnel operating out of the Iranian Interests Section in Washington, the source says. "These cells work out of safe houses where ammunition and explosives are stored, each with an operational commander who reports back to Iran," the source says. Terror cells have been placed on high alert to attack targets in the United States and Europe should Iran's nuclear facilities be attacked, a source in the Revolutionary Guards says."These cells work out of safe houses where ammunition and explosives are stored, each with an operational commander who reports back to Iran," the source says.

The source says these cells are divided into two groups: one is operational and awaits the order to attack; the other gathers information, monitoring such sensitive sites as power plants, water and food distribution, refineries, railroads and others along with information on officials of the host countries and their activities. This information, transferred to Iran, is being used by the Quds Force command in Tehran "to select targets for maximum effect."

- O Lord of Hosts, we come to You humbly, asking for Your wisdom and protection from these evil forces.  We thank You that You are our God, our Defense and our Strong Tower! We worship You as our Commander-in-Chief in this epic battle between good and evil.  We put our trust in You, and ask that You would send confusion on our enemies and thwart the plans and devices of our enemies...both foreign and domestic. We praise You for Your victory in the battle You waged on Calvary, for our souls.  We ask that those who wish us evil would be stopped in their paths, encountering You, and know that surely You are the only true God!  Amen.

" Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, "He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust."  If you say, "The LORD is my refuge,"and you make the Most High your dwelling,  no harm will overtake you, no disaster will come near your tent."
(Psalm 91:1-2;9-10) 

On Capitol Hill This Week Volume XIX, Number 10b


News from Israel



Says "moment of truth" is near

A major Israel TV station on Sunday night broadcast a detailed report on how Israel will go about attacking Iran's nuclear facilities in the event that diplomacy and sanctions fail and Israel decides to carry out a military strike. The report, screened on the main evening news of Channel 10, was remarkable both in terms of the access granted to the reporter, who said he had spent weeks with the pilots and other personnel he interviewed, and in the fact that his assessments on a strike were cleared by the military censor.

No order to strike is likely to be given before the P5+1 talks with Iran resume in May, the reporter, Alon Ben-David, said. "But the coming summer will not only be hot but tense." In the event that negotiations fail and the order is given for Israel to carry out an attack on Iranian nuclear facilities, "dozens if not more planes" will take part in the mission: attack and escort jets, tankers for mid-air refueling, electronic warfare planes and rescue helicopters, the report said.

Ben-David said the Israel Air Force "does not have the capacity to destroy the entire Iranian program." There will be no replication of the decisive strikes on Iraq's Osirak reactor in 1981 or on Syria in 2007, he said. "The result won't be definitive." But, a pilot quoted in the report said, the IAF will have to ensure that it emerges with the necessary result, with "a short and professional" assault.

Ben-David said that if negotiations break down, and Iran moves key parts of its nuclear program underground to its Qom facility, the IAF "is likely to get the order and to set out on the long journey to Iran." (Times of Israel) Read more.

- "For by wise guidance you will wage war, And in abundance of counselors there is victory." (Proverbs 24:6)


As expected, talks between the world powers and Iran ended on Saturday with a decision - not one that would suspend the enrichment of uranium or escalate economic sanctions - but one to hold another round of talks in five weeks. Israel may remain quiet until then and allow the West to try and get the job done. But if that doesn't happen, the military option will move back to the front of the line right when the summer begins, a season that is favorable - due to clear skies - for a military strike.

Ultimately, Israeli defense officials are skeptical the talks will bear fruit. Iran is simply perceived to be close to the bomb and is not yet hurting enough, despite the unprecedented sanctions. Thursday, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said the Islamic Republic would not surrender its nuclear rights "even under the most difficult pressure." Meanwhile, the Iranians are reportedly demanding an American and European commitment not to carry out a military attack on their country as long as the talks continue.

US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said recently he believes there is strong likelihood Israel will attack Iran before June - prior to Tehran entering what Israeli leaders have called a "zone of immunity," a point beyond which it would no longer be possible to halt Iran's nuclear advancement towards weapon-making. (Jerusalem Post/ /Ha'aretz)

- We must be diligent to continue to pray for wisdom for the Israeli leadership. Pray for God's guidance as they consider this attack. Pray that they count the cost.

- "For by wise guidance you will wage war, And in abundance of counselors there is victory." (Proverbs 24:6)


PM Benjamin Netanyahu voiced irritation on Sunday that the next session of nuclear talks between Iran and six world powers would be held in more than a month's time. "My initial impression is that Iran has been given a freebie. It's got five weeks to continue enrichment without any limitation, any inhibition," Netanyahu said during a meeting with US Senator Joseph Lieberman. "I think Iran should take immediate steps: first stop all enrichment, take out all the enriched material and dismantle the nuclear facility in Qom. I believe that the world's greatest practitioner of terrorism must not have the opportunity to develop atomic bombs," Netanyahu said. (Reuters)

- Offer praise to the Lord that He has raised up a strong and a wise leader to rule over Israel in this hour, when she faces an imminent threat to her very existence from the nation of Iran. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu deserves our continued covering in prayer, for whatever affects Israel will affect us, too. Pray for P.M. Netanyahu; and pray for the peace -- the shalom -- of Jerusalem.

- "Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth."
(I Timothy 2:1-4)


Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is set to meet with a Palestinian delegation next week, [April 15] where he intends to propose direct talks with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. The Palestinians have rarely agreed to direct talks with Israel since Netanyahu took office in 2009. The plan follows the latest aborted effort to jumpstart peace negotiations in discussions hosted by Jordan in January.

According to a press release from Netanyahu's media advisor, Israel's representative in talks with the Palestinians, attorney Yitzhak Molcho, is set to deliver the same message regarding direct talks in an upcoming meeting with Abbas. The press release said Molcho is also expected to give Abbas a letter "about Israel's position regarding a future agreement with the Palestinians."

The Israeli statement noted they welcomed the continued call from the Mideast Quartet - consisting of the US, the European Union, the United Nations and Russia - for direct talks between Israel and the Palestinians "without preconditions." (Ezekiel 37:26-28)

The Palestinians have repeatedly demanded that Israel halt settlement activity and have called for Israel to accept the 1967 lines as the basis for negotiations. Israel did enact a 10-month partial settlement freeze that concluded in 2010. The Palestinians eventually commenced direct talks with Israel towards the end of the freeze, but suspended the talks after the moratorium ended. (Bridges for Peace)

- Pray for wisdom and guidance for Israel's Prime Minister in these talks. Pray for confidence in what God wants for the nation of Israel.

- "Moreover I will make a covenant of peace with them, and it shall be an everlasting covenant with them; I will establish them and multiply them, and I will set My sanctuary in their midst forevermore. My tabernacle also shall be with them; indeed I will be their God, and they shall be My people. The nations also will know that I, the LORD."


A former top intelligence officer and liaison with Egypt, Maj.-Gen. (res.) Amos Gilad . . warned that the ongoing political upheaval in Egypt and the rise of the Muslim Brotherhood could spell trouble in the future. "I'm not hiding from you that we are concerned," Gilad told foreign journalists and diplomats at a briefing at the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, an Israeli think-tank. "The leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood keep declaring, 'We are committed to this peace.' I am not so sure."

He said the Islamists regard Israel as "Waqf, holy land," or property bequeathed by Muslims for religious purposes. He noted that it was the Egypt's Brotherhood-dominated parliament that called for expelling Israel's ambassador and reviewing bilateral ties after Israel launched a military strike on Gaza last month [March].

Israel regards the 33-year-old peace treaty with Egypt as a pillar of its national security. Egypt was the first Arab nation to make peace with the Jewish state and Gilad said he couldn't imagine peace deals with other Arab countries in the future without Egyptian support.

Lawlessness is growing in the Sinai Peninsula, which abuts Israel. Al-Qaeda and Palestinian terrorists are using it as a launch pad for strikes against Israel and disgruntled Bedouin routinely attack the pipeline that delivers natural gas to Israel and Jordan. Egyptian forces have failed to keep order since Husni Mubarak was toppled over a year ago. Israeli security sources have labeled Sinai a "terror incubator," a transit point for huge quantities of arms, rockets and contraband originating in Iran and Libya headed for Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip. (By Arieh O'Sullivan, The Media Line, April 10, 2012)

- Pray that the agreements between Egypt and Israel hold through Egypt's changes. Pray that the security steps taken in the Sinai area are productive.

- "In God is my salvation and my glory; the rock of my strength, and my refuge, is in God. Trust in Him at all times, you people; pour out your heart before Him; God is a refuge for us." (Psalm 62:7-8)



"The Muslim Brotherhood nominated its chief strategist and financier Khairat el-Shater on Saturday as its candidate to become Egypt's first president since Hosni Mubarak, breaking a pledge not to seek the top office and a monopoly on power," reports the New York Times. "Because of the Brotherhood's unrivaled grass-roots organization and popular appeal, Mr. Shater, 62, a multimillionaire business tycoon who was a political prisoner until just a year ago, immediately became a presidential front-runner.

If he wins the June election, the Brotherhood, a previously outlawed Islamist group, would control the presidency, the Parliament and the committee writing the new constitution, moving toward a confrontation with Egypt's military rulers over the country's future. His candidacy is likely to unnerve the West and has already outraged Egyptian liberals, who wonder what other pledges of moderation the Brotherhood may abandon.

The Brotherhood is also engaged in a standoff with the military over its calls to dissolve the military-led government, and the degree of civilian oversight of the military in the new constitution. The Brotherhood's participation also turns the election into a referendum on the role of Islamist politics in post-Arab Spring governments that is sure to resonate across the region.

Mr. Shater faces Islamist rivals to his left and right - one a more liberal former Brotherhood leader, the other an ultraconservative Salafi. Indeed, the Brotherhood may have entered the race in part because a win or near win by either rival Islamist would badly damage its authority as the primary voice of the Islamist movement in Egypt . . .

An Israeli official, speaking on condition of anonymity, declined to comment specifically on Mr. Shater but called the nomination a worrisome turn. 'Obviously this is not good news,' the official said. 'The Muslim Brotherhood is no friend of Israel's. They do not wish us well. The big question will be how pragmatic they will be once in power. It could go in either direction.'" Note: Egypt's process of electing a president will begin May 23, and the winner will be announced June 21st. (JOEL ROSENBERG)

- Pray against the election of Mr.el-Shater as president of Egypt. No one wants the Muslim Brotherhood to gain control of the nation, for it is a violent, terrorist organization that wants only its brand of Islamic power. Pray for the protection of the Egyptian innocents, including the Coptic Christians and the new converts from Islam.

- "He changes times and seasons; he removes kings and sets up kings; he gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those who have understanding . . ."
(Daniel 2:21)


Tee shirts with anti-Semitic slogans are being sold outside the Polish football club, Widzew Lodz, Polskie Radio reported on Thursday. The items have been on sale in a pavilion next to the club's official shop. "This is Widzew terrain, entry to Jews is forbidden," reads the slogan on one Tee shirt. "Curl hunters," referring to the side curls of Chassidic Jews, is written on the other, adopting the age-old anti-Semitic slur. A woman working in the shop told Gazeta Wyborcza daily that such items sell well and make a decent profit, noted Polskie Radio. Incitement to racist crimes is illegal in Poland. With the country preparing to co-host the Euro 2012 tournament this June, government regulations cleared by the Polish Football Association (PZPN) state that fans are not allowed to bring materials that are "racist, xenophobic, political, religious and propaganda-based" into stadiums, the report stated.
Lodz had a Jewish population estimated at 230,000 prior to the onset of World War II. The Lodz Ghetto, established in the city upon the German invasion, was the second largest ghetto in occupied Poland. Of the 230,000 Lodz Jews plus the 25,000 people transported in, only 877 remained. (

- Pray for the Poles involved in these anti-Semitic activities, for they know not what they do. One would have hoped that the horrific anti-Semitism of WWII would have taught the Poles severe lessons. Pray for the football fans and the youth especially to be reminded of the atrocities in Poland during WWII. Ask the Lord to lead the rest of European countries to chastise the Poles to immediately cease the anti-Semitism.

- "He who keeps instruction is in the way of life; but he who refuses reproof goes astray."
(Proverbs 10: 17)


This year the National Jewish Democratic Council (NJDC) has published a new version of the "Four Questions" traditionally recited at the Passover seder. Instead of commemorating the liberation of the Jews from Egypt, the NJDC has chosen to take this opportunity to hail, what they see as, the achievements of President Barack Obama. As Commentary Magazine's Jonathan Tobin poignantly notes, "One of the most disturbing aspects of modern American Jewish life is the almost obsessive desire of many Jews to universalize every aspect of Jewish belief while downplaying the original meanings of customs and ritual."

Following a video of [Hussein] Obama's Passover greetings, the NJDC states, "As Jews in the United States and around the world gather together to celebrate Passover, it is important that we reflect on the blessings and freedoms that we have as Jews living in a free society. One of those blessings is that we have a President deeply committed to the safety and security of Israel, and the welfare of all Americans-including the needy among us."

They then go on to list their new version of the 'Four Questions,' which include: "Why has [Hussein] Obama provided record amounts of military aid to Israel?"; "Why has Obama worked so hard and succeeded at uniting the world against Iran's illicit nuclear weapons program?"; "Why has [Hussein] Obama achieved the historic passage of 'Obamacare'"?; and, "Why has [Hussein] Obama fought to strengthen Medicare and Medicaid?" They claim that the "answers to all of these questions are: [Hussein] Obama cares deeply about the safety and security of the Jewish state. He has been Israel's leading advocate from day one and has done more than any other President to meaningfully bolster its defenses and provide for its future. He also cares deeply about the welfare of all Americans, including our seniors and the needy - and our commitment to them."

However, if one examines Hussein Obama's record on Israel, he or she is likely to recognize that, as Charles Krauthammer explains, "This president [Obama] has done more to de-legitimize and undermine Israel's position in the world than any other president[?] and he did it by arriving on the scene and imposing and demanding of Israel a freeze on settlements including the building of the Jewish homes in the Jewish quarter of Jerusalem, of all places, something that had never been precondition in 17 years of negotiations."

Yet, despite one's political inclinations and alliances, and regardless of a president's administrative record, the Passover seder is not a forum for furthering political objectives or creating new versions of the 'Four Questions.'

Tobin notes, "Passover is the occasion for Jews to remember their liberation from Egypt and to embrace not only the gift of freedom but also the ability to worship God and His laws as a people. While seders are appropriate moments to remember those in need as well as other Jewish communities - such as that in Israel - which are assailed by foes, it is not the time to be delivering obsequious paeans to American politicians, no matter which party they belong to. That sort of absurd distortion of the festival of freedom bears a closer resemblance to idol worship than it does to Judaism." (Arutz7 News) Read more.

- Pray that the Jewish people in our nation have the blinders removed from their eyes so that they can truly see the truth of Obama's attitude towards Israel. Not only are these Jews denying the truth but have created a "truth" of their own! Pray that in spite of their "enlightened" view of the Scriptures, they will come under the power of the Holy Spirit and be removed from their rebellion against God's Word. Pray for the protection of their children's minds and spirits from the falsehoods being taught by their elders. Pray that observant Jews will so outraged by the changing of the commemoration of God's setting the Jews free that they will speak out against the practice and words expressed in the seder.

- "You shall make seven lamps for it [lamp stand], and they arrange its lamps so that they give light in front of it." (Exodus 25: 37)

News from Syria



LIGNET has uncovered information suggesting Syria could provide Iran with sensitive nuclear technology and a secret stockpile of uranium to assist in the building of weapons of mass destruction. This is an urgent concern as the United States watches the situation in Syria deteriorate and terrorist groups like al Qaeda get a foothold.

The United States must start thinking about how to secure Syria's nuclear program and to locate the missing uranium and nuclear weapons-related technology before they can find their way into the hands of the Iranians or terrorist groups, LIGNET Managing Editor Fred Fleitz said in an interview this week.

"If Assad thinks he's in danger, he just may decide to transfer some technology, or maybe some uranium, to Iran," Fleitz said of the Syrian president, who has earned international opprobrium for his brutal crackdown on the opposition.

"Now in terms of falling into the hands of terrorist groups, that is a real worry. The worry that militia groups could seize these weapons, such as militias in Libya did after that conflict, is a real concern." (Excerpted from

- Ask the Lord to intervene in this situation in Syria and to bring Assad face-to-face with his wickedness and deception, Help our leaders to seize the key to intimidate Assad's regime. Pray that the Lord will cause all of Syria's WMD to malfunction and to be rejected by Iran and Russia. Assad needs to pay for the murders he has allowed on his own people. May the Lord humble him so that he turns his heart to Jesus.

"Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall."
(Proverbs 16:18)

(Reported by: Bridges for Peace)


With just one day to go until a brokered ceasefire in the internal Syrian conflict was supposed to take effect, gunfire from Syria resulted in casualties across the border in Turkey. The incident occurred even as a Turkish newspaper cited experts saying Turkey could consider stronger steps against the Syrian regime if the United Nations-endorsed ceasefire is not upheld on Tuesday [April 10].

Monday's cross-border violence occurred in a Turkish town where Syrians have fled the bloodshed in their own country. According to a press release from the Turkish Foreign Ministry sent to The Mideast Update, two Syrian nationals and two Turks were injured as a result of the gunfire from Syria.

The Bashar al-Assad regime has viciously cracked down on a 13-month-old uprising against its rule, killing thousands of civilians in the process. The once peaceful-protest opposition has itself grown more militant, leading to international concern that a civil war could break out in the country.

Turkey was incensed by Monday's incident, according to the Foreign Ministry's press release. "Syrian citizens who took refuge in our country from the brutality of the current regime in Syria are under Turkey's full protection. We will certainly take necessary measures if such incidents reoccur."

The release said that sentiment was "communicated through definitive and strong expressions" to the Syrian Chargé d'Affaires in Ankara, who was summoned on Monday to the Turkish Foreign Ministry.

"It is being observed that the regime forces have recently shifted their attacks on people to areas close to our common border," the Turkish statement further said of the Assad-led crackdown. The Turks noted that 21 wounded Syrians fleeing the assaults had recently entered Turkey, two of whom died shortly thereafter, presumably from their wounds.
The spike in violence near Turkey comes as a self-declared ceasefire date draws near for the Syrian government. The deal, brokered by UN envoy Kofi Annan, was accepted by the Assad regime, who gave themselves until April 10 to comply according to Annan.

In the Annan plan, within 48 hours of the regime pulling back its troops from population centers the opposition was also to respect the ceasefire. However, the Syrian Foreign Affairs Ministry spokesman said in a statement on Sunday that the April 10 deadline announced by Annan was an incorrect interpretation of the government's commitment.. . It remains to be seen how the world can force the Syrian regime to back down. The English-language Turkish newspaper Today's Zaman reported that as a result of the Syrian regime revisiting the ceasefire deal, one option for Turkey could be to seek international support in imposing a "humanitarian aid corridor" or "buffer zone" inside its conflict-ridden neighbor.

Today's Zaman cited multiple experts who acknowledged Turkey could potentially push for a force to enter Syrian territory to create such a safe zone. The newspaper further reported that the Turkish Red Crescent had said it was preparing to bring aid into Syria if an aid corridor is announced.

(By Joshua Spurlock,, April 9, 2012)

- Pray for the safety of those fleeing the internal war in Syria. Pray for a cease-fire that will hold.

- "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)


With the death toll in the 13-month-old Syrian uprising having exceeded the 10,000 mark last week, Russia and China have signaled that they may change their position with respect to embattled Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, unlocking the key to secure a strong resolution against the brutal regime in the Arab country.

If UN-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan's six-point truce plan, backed by the Security Council, does not hold, Russia and China will find it very difficult to resist a third resolution condemning Assad into total isolation, experts have said.

Syria has promised to observe a UN-backed cease-fire starting on Thursday, but its forces kept up fierce attacks on opposition neighborhoods in the hours before the deadline. The shootings were still reported on Thursday after the 6 a.m. deadline passed. Bassma Kodmani, spokeswoman of the opposition Syrian National Council (SNC), said the truce was largely observed on Thursday, but that a heavy security presence, including checkpoints and snipers, remain.

In the meanwhile, Turkey is considering setting up a "security" or "buffer" zone along its border with Syria, Prime Minister Erdoğan said on March 16. Touching on the possibility of the buffer zone, Orhan said the buffer zone is necessary in order to maintain the security of the opposition groups, which are targeted by the Assad regime. The number of refugees who have fled to Turkey from the violence in Syria has exceeded 25,000.

Regarding these refugees, Erdoğan stated that Turkey will never close its doors to the Syrian people even if this number reaches 100,000, in accordance with Turkey's "open door" policy on Syrian refugees. (Zaman)

- Pray that Russia and China will change their minds and will support the UN resolutions to curtail the deaths and destruction of property in Syria. The Syrian regime under Assad must collapse. And while Syria is a democratic republic, the whole election process is a fraud and deception. The regime picks those who will win a position. Pray that Russia and China realize that the Syrian regime is a liability.

- "They [the wicked] encourage themselves in an evil matter: they talk of laying snares secretly; they say. 'Who will see them?' They devise iniquities." (Psalm 64 :5,6a)


The crisis in Syria has created a flood of refugees. According to the United Nations, the number fleeing the regime's wrath has risen by several thousand in the past few days and now tops 34,000. Their most recent numbers show that hundreds of thousands are thought to be displaced within Syria. Bill Bray with Christian Aid Mission ( says, "Almost every day, we're getting new reports of increasing numbers of refugees and increasing sacrifice being made by the Christian community in the surrounding countries to reach out."

Most of the poor refugees, made up of nominal Christian and other minorities, are fleeing to neighboring countries where the reception has been chilly. "They are trying to contain the refugee crisis, and displaced persons within Syria and not welcoming them across their borders. All the borders are mined and armed--protected. They don't want a huge rush of refugees from Syria coming into their countries.

"God uses times of crisis to soften hearts to the gospel," added the Christian Aid staff spokesman. "This may be a time of harvest among Muslim and Christian refugees. God is sovereign. He cares for Muslims. Countries in the Middle East are going through great upheaval. Now many Muslims are turning to Christ. Maybe the long turmoil in Syria is God's way of bringing this about." (Read more)

- Pray for strength for the Christian community and wisdom in dealing with the government and local police officials. A lot of these people are illegal immigrants, they're undocumented; there are no jobs for them so we need to pray for the Christian community as they try to integrate these refugees into their churches and into the community." Pray, too, for:
Pray for continued open doors for the Gospel.

Pray that God will cause seeds of the Gospel to grow.

Ask God to provide the resources for this response.

- "In that day his [Syria's] strong cities will be as a forsaken bough and an uppermost branch, which they left because of the children of Israel; and there will be desolation." (Isaiah 17: 9)


In the midst of pain, they find God. From our believing brothers and sisters in Damascus, needing our prayers came this prayer request. Will you join us in praying for all those in Syria and elsewhere suffering under violence and trusting in Jesus to keep them . . . pray especially for those who do not yet have hope in Jesus after this life! So many still need to know His love! Please pray that many will hear the truth and accept it.

* Pray that God will change the heart of those extremists who are coming to Damascus from other Muslim countries to fight. Pray that they will leave Syria with the message of the Gospel. Just like Paul, as he was heading to Damascus to persecute the Christians but later he left Damascus with the Gospel of hope.

* Pray for those who are being persecuted for their faith.

- "When the wicked arise, men hide themselves; but when they perish, the righteous increase." ( Proverbs 28: 28)

More International News



GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney and Republicans in Congress blasted [Hussein]Obama after the missile launch late Thursday, accusing him of appeasement. "Instead of approaching Pyongyang from a position of strength, [Hussein] Obama sought to appease the regime with a food-aid deal that proved to be as naïve as it was short-lived," Romney said in a statement. "At the same time, he has cut critical U.S. missile defense programs and continues to underfund them," he said. "This incompetence from the [Hussein] Obama administration has emboldened the North Korean regime and undermined the security of the United States and our allies."

The [Hussein] Obama administration announced a new agreement in February where the United States said it would send food aid to North Korea and Pyongyang would suspend its nuclear testing. While the White House said after the deal was announced it was skeptical that North Korea would follow through with its claims, the agreement was viewed as a potential change in direction.

Less than two months later, Pyongyang's missile launch has shown there was ample reason for skepticism.

Senate Minority Whip Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) connected the two issues on Thursday, arguing that North Korea's missile launch made a "mockery" of the Obama administration's agreement with North Korea on food aid. "The administration should abandon its naive negotiations with North Korea . . . and instead focus on fully funding missile defenses that can protect the United States from ballistic missile threats," Kyl said in a statement.

In Congress, the North Korea missile launch could provide a jolt to the debate over missile defense, an issue on which the Obama administration and Republicans have frequently clashed.

Like Kyl, Republicans on the House Armed Services Committee accused [Hussein] Obama of not properly funding U.S. missile defense programs, as Republicans want more money to go to nuclear modernization and have been critical of potential plans to decrease the U.S. nuclear arsenal. "It appears North Korea has continued to pursue its efforts to strike the American people, while at the same time [Hussein] Obama has degraded U.S. national missile defense," House Armed Services Committee Chairman Buck McKeon (R-Calif.) said in a statement. "I call on the president to work with me and my committee to restore the investments in our national missile defenses as a prudent and necessary measure to protect the homeland." (The Hill) Read more.

- God, we put all our trust in the absolutism of our God and His power to abolish the plans of this administration to cut critical U.S. missile defense programs where we cannot defend ourselves against our enemies. We ask that You reverse and destroy any and all plans that undermine the security of our country. Father, overrule the god of this world that motivates this administration to fulfill its evil intentions for America. We bind the works of darkness under the power of the blood of Jesus and we command this evil to be shattered and fall. In the Name of Jesus we pray.

- "Lo, you trust in the staff of this broken reed; whereon if a man lean, it will go into his hand, and pierce it; so is Pharoah (this administration) to all that trust in him." (Isaiah 36:6)


Concerns are growing that North Korea is stepping up plans to detonate a nuclear device after the launch of a rocket on Friday ended in humiliating failure. Analysts say the embarrassment of the failure makes it more likely that North Korea will choose to ratchet up tensions in the region further in an effort to recover prestige.

Kim Kwan-jin, the South Korean defence minister, told a parliamentary committee in Seoul on Friday that intelligence reports indicate the North is making preparations for a nuclear test, which would be the third time it has detonated such a device. "I believe it's possible because North Korea has been making preparations for a long time," he said.

"The North Korean regime is based on three fundamental values," said Toshimitsu Shigemura, a professor at Tokyo's Waseda University and author of a number of books on the North Korean leadership. "The first is the legitimacy of the regime; the second is its desire to pursue what it sees as 'noble causes'; and the third is the concept of face" he said. "This failure means they have lost legitimacy, they have failed in a noble cause and there has been massive loss of face. "To win some of that back, they need a new achievement," he said. "A new nuclear test would provide that." ( Read more.

- Lift up the new leadership in North Korea, asking our Lord to visit each official with His divine intervention, and soon! May He grant "visions in the night," that will wake these people up, and rescue them from plans based upon insane "reasonings." The three fundamental values, cited in this article, that are holding up this regime are all based upon a lie -- that it is dependant upon man to determine the destiny of North Korea. May the truth be made known instead, for our real reliance is upon God. May they find Him now!

- "You will know the truth, and the truth shall set you free." (John 8:31-32)


U.S.-Pakistan relations took a leap forward on Friday, when Islamabad agreed to a plan to reopen vital supply routes to American and coalition forces in Afghanistan. The plan bars any private security contractors from working inside Pakistan and bans the United States from carrying out "overt or covert operations" within the country's borders, according to news reports. That ban on U.S. operations in Pakistan will likely include airstrikes by CIA-operated unmanned aircraft.

If the Hussein Obama administration agrees to meet those demands, the United States will be allowed to ship non-lethal equipment and supplies to American and NATO troops in Afghanistan through Pakistan. The agreement comes after nearly a month of negotiations within Pakistani parliament over the terms of the deal. Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani assured lawmakers on Friday that Islamabad would enforce the terms of the deal "in letter and spirit."

The supply routes have been closed to American forces since last November, when U.S. warplanes accidentally attacked a Pakistani border outpost, killing 24 soldiers. As a result, Pakistan also cut off all military and intelligence ties with the United States. . . The number of clandestine airstrikes has surged under the Obama administration, taking out suspected terror targets in Yemen, Somalia and Pakistan. Politically, congressional lawmakers also have praised the use of unmanned drones by the military and the intelligence community. Defense spending on autonomous aircraft has surged on Capitol Hill, making the aircraft one of the few bright spots in an increasingly dismal defense budget forecast. (The Hill) Read more.

- Abba Father, we thank You that Pakistan is allowing the vital supply route for our troops to be reopened under a new agreement between the US and themselves, if the US does not use drone driven airstrikes within their nation. Lord, we know these drone attacks have assisted the coalition to target terrorist sites in various nations, but the US administration must understand the right of sovereignty of these nations and this is what Pakistan is requiring. We ask You to extend Your right hand to confront our administration with the arrogance they are exhibiting and the violation of national rights they are ignoring. Show them that they do NOT 'rule and own' the world, in Jesus' Name, amen and amen.

- "But You, O Lord, shall laugh at them. You shall hold all the nations in derision. O my Strength, I will watch for You; for You, O God, are my defense. Do not slay them, lest my people forget; scatter them by Your power, and bring them down, O Lord our shield. For the sin of their mouths, the words of their lips, let them be trapped in their pride, For the cursing and lies that they utter, consume them in wrath; consume them till they are no more, That they may know that God rules over Jacob to the ends of the earth. Selah." (Psalm 59: 8-9, 11-13)


China has loosened its currency controls in a move that may spur gains in the value of the yuan. From Monday, the yuan can fluctuate up to 1% in trading against the US dollar from a fixed price set by the central bank, the People's Bank of China said. That is up from the previous limit of 0.5%.

The increase of the trading band was announced in English, a rare statement that suggests it was targeted at foreign audiences. China has been under pressure to let the yuan appreciate. Nations like the US believe that China keeps the yuan artificially low to boost its exports, giving it an unfair trading edge. The US Treasury Department on Sunday welcomed the move.

"China's decision to widen the daily trading band for its exchange rate, if implemented in a way that allows the value of the exchange rate to reflect market forces, could contribute re-balancing, which would be positive for China, the United States, and the global economy," an official told Reuters. He added there was still a "misalignment" with regards to China's exchange rate and more progress is needed.

China's yuan was fixed against the dollar until 2005, when it was lifted and allowed to float against a basket of currencies each day. Since then, the yuan has risen 31% against the dollar - to about 6.30 yuan at the moment. Last month, China and Australia signed a currency swap agreement in a bid to promote bilateral trade and investment. (BBC News)

- Pray that this move reflects the wisdom of the Lord and will benefit the economy of the USA. Pray also that the move will result in the loosening of communism in China.

- "Again, the kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and hid; and for joy over it he goes and sells all he has and buys that field."
(Matthew 13: 44)

This Week, Worship Our Lord As . . .

GOD OF PEACE (Eh-lo-hay Ha-Shalom)

The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. (Romans 16:20)

You are the God of Peace, Eh-lo-hay Ha-Shalom. Yet I thank You because You go to battle for me. How glad I am that I need not trust in my hands, my ability, or my strength for defense. I simply put my life into Your hands and have all the help I need. How I praise You!
(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)