Shabbat Nowruz

Shabbat Nowruz

Shabbat Shalom / Happy Nowruz

Nowruz Nah RuzNowruz is the new year celebration for Iranians which comes on the Spring Equinox – which is today. It is a time for joy, hope, celebration, presents. President Obama called out “Happy Nowruz” yesterday, as this day arrived in the region formerly known as Persia, due to the Earth reaching that designated place in its orbit around the sun. This day is also significant to the Zoroastrian Faith, The Baha’i Faith, and others.

Lunar Eclipse 2015 / Blood MoonToday also, however, happens to be the first Jewish Sabbath after the recent elections in Israel. And it comes during a cycle of Blood Moons that many believe have historic prophetic significance. In other words, this day is at the center of a swirl of real-world and symbolic happenings. Let’s take stock of the situation

Israel faces greater uncertainty in the region, including the fear that the $5B in funds to rebuild Gaza, and the efforts of Abbas at the UN continue to pose an existential threat to the Jewish state. The Middle East Forum recently published an excellent summary of this – a balanced representation of the challenges facing the new government in Israel. Obama and IranHere in America the President and other elected representatives are at odds over what is to be done in the region as he pursue negotiations with Iran that many feel will lead to disaster. One reason this seems to be a valid concern is related to the New Year beginning now in Iran. Their New Year holiday coincides with that of the Baha’i Naw-Rúz, and they are a sizable religious minority in Iran, to which I happen to belong. And yet Iran has a long history of persecuting the Baha’is – including murder, terror, torture and incarceration. This does not bode well for the future of mankind.

Thankfully, there is a God in heaven who will see to it that His Will is ultimately fulfilled.

The random virtues card I drew was cooperation. “Working together for the good of all… the willingness to stand side by side and use the different gifts each of us has to offer.” Though force can protect in emergency, only justice, fairness, consideration and cooperation can finally lead men to the dawn of eternal peace.” General Dwight David Eisenhower, 34th President of the U.S.A.


Dwight D. Eisenhower EisenhauerFrom the linked article above “The Eisenhauer (German for “iron hewer/miner”) family migrated from Karlsbrunn, Germany, to North America, first settling in York, Pennsylvania, in 1741, and in the 1880s moving to Kansas. Accounts vary as to how and when the German name Eisenhauer was anglicized to Eisenhower.”

Two thoughts come to mind. Christ was to return with a Rod of Iron, to set up 1,000 years of peace. And and “they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks:” which would require an Eisenhauer.

Netanyahu has been referred to as a modern Churchill, who also comes to my mind in this context, but I had not thought to compare him to Eisenhower, who served in WWI and was the supreme allied commander in WWII. It was the US entry in WWII that ultimately saved what was left of the Jewish population in Europe and elsewhere, enabling the establishment, in 1948, of the Jewish state, which collected the desperate and dying remnant of the people still clinging to the Covenant of Moses.Juif

There is much in the news about Netanyahu’s approach to cooperation, and a two-state solution. The controversy is related to whether more pressure should be put on Israel or its enemies to cooperate. Many feel that a certain minimal standard of cooperation needs to be applied to both parties, rather than the path taken by my heritage-nation, Sweden for there to be more cooperation by the Israeli’s.

Beat their Swords into PlowsharesThese are important topics, because, to reverse the Iron hewer’s quote,  only justice, fairness, consideration and cooperation can prevent the need for force, as men look towards the dawn of eternal peace.


Honor Meltdown

Honor Meltdown

My wife and I spent last weekend in a Virtues workshop, learning how these “internal treasures” can transform us, our family, and the world.  In honor of The Virtues Project, my blogs, going forward will feature a Virtue, pulled at random from a stack of 50, as a lens through which to view the topic at hand.

medal of honor

U.S. Army Medal of Honor

Today I drew Honor, with the following affirmation: I am honorable, I keep my agreements and treat others with respect. I live by the virtues. I care about doing the right thing.

The Topic? The U.S. led negotiations with Iran on Nuclear armaments. What does honor have to do with nuclear discussions?

Apparently not a whole lot…

For starters, the headlines are starting to call out that there is no honor to be found anywhere near these negotiations.  I could pick any number of articles but Iran Cheats, Obama Whitewashes caught my eye.  In this Wall street Journal Opinion piece Bret Stephens maintains that “Iran came to the table cheating on its nuclear commitments. It continued to cheat on them throughout the interim agreement it agreed to last year. And it will cheat on any undertakings it signs.”

What’s perhaps worse, is that the article makes the case that this cheating is common knowledge, and key named officials, including the US Secretary of State, John Kerry, in particular know it.  The same John Kerry who said, in 2012 “We’re not going to pass another treaty in the U.S. Senate if our colleagues [in the administration] are sitting up there knowing somebody is cheating.”

In the Virtues Workshop one of the facilitators, from Virtues Village, stated “Virtues are the golden thread that unites Humanity.”  Given the above quote, and the appalling vacuum of virtuous leadership today, it is a small wonder that the world is in such disunity.

Hassan_Rouhani_and_Vladimir_Putin_(1)Honor is indeed a virtue, but there is virtually none in evidence on the global scene today.  The 1994 agreement on Ukraine is a compelling reference point: “On December 5, 1994 the leaders of Ukraine, Russia, Britain and the United States signed a memorandum to remove nuclear weapons in Ukraine. They all signed six agreements for Ukraine, the first two of which are reproduced here:

1) The Russian Federation, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and the United States of America reaffirm their commitment to Ukraine, in accordance with the principles of the Final Act of the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe, to respect the independence and sovereignty and the existing borders of Ukraine;
2) The Russian Federation, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and the United States of America reaffirm their obligation to refrain from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of Ukraine, and that none of their weapons will ever be used against Ukraine except in self-defence or otherwise in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations

The Yellow Star

The Yellow Star

Auschwitz_outerwear_distinguish_yellow_Star_of_DavidThe book The People of the Sign is, among other things, an exploration from the inside of the Sign of the Mosaic Covenant.  The book outlines, in living detail, what it was, and what it did for the 12 tribes of Israel, which had just been freed from Pharaoh’s oppressive clutches. In a sense it placed a Yellow Star on a people destined to stand in the gap, at the End of Days.  My upcoming conclusion to the saga – The Rod of Iron – answers the questions raised by the first two volumes, especially questions related to Jewish Identity.  After 2,520 years of punishment, culminating – unfortunately – in the Holocaust, those identified by the Yellow Star would be virtually forced by these circumstances to reassemble in the Promised Land.  This fulfilled God’s divine purpose – whether they liked it or not.

Yes, you read that right.

This wasn’t known to me a the time I began writing this trilogy, but by the time I completed the manuscript this handwriting was clearly on the wall, even for those like me, who weren’t looking in that direction.  And the presence of this nation of Jews is at the center of the unraveling of an entire civilization.  Let’s look at a few examples of the madness

It is common practice to blame the refugee situation in the Arab world on Israel, but as this link clearly shows, the chronic nature of the Palestinian Refugee problem is a symptom of a broader illness, one which is not caused by having a stable Democratic Multicultural regime (Israel) in the region.  Against this backdrop of 18 million refugees, and more and more armed unrest, we have Iran pulling the nose of the West, on it’s way to armed nuclear status.  And speaking of pulling the nose of the West…

Jews excluded from kristallnachtGlobally it is becoming cool to hate Israel.  This video which portrays the threat to Jewish student leaders in the U.S. is chilling.  The resurgence of global antisemitism, which prior to WWII had its roots in Russia and Europe and as a result of the Holocaust went underground for 60 years, has resurfaced with a vengeance.  But I’m not aware of it ever having such a foothold here.  Right now it seems to be gaining ground.  Here’s another nearly unbelievable headline.  Jews are being excluded from a Kristallnacht memorial. You can’t make this stuff up.

Large segments of humanity are clearly applying the Yellow Star to the only Jewish state on the planet, which has been fighting for the right to exist since before it was born.

But the backlash against this hatred will be severe.  The People of the Sign suffered in Egypt, and their boy babies were put to death.  Moses survived, and once God acted to free them, the armies of Pharaoh were powerless to bind them again with the shackles from which they had been freed.  The modern enactment of this was more severe, more extreme.  And it is the world of Islam that today is playing the role of Pharaoh.

This short 2013 video from Jordanian TV is an example of how hatred pours forth and empowers the accelerating showdown between Islam and Israel.  IUMS Member Tareq Hawwas delivers this Antisemitic diatribe in a manner that seems calm and reasoned, starting slow and building to this mind-boggling set of unbelievably evil comments: “They have a good understanding of finances, and therefore… when they were dispersed throughout the world in the days of Hitler…  Incidentally, most of what is said about the massacre is exaggeration and lies.  If only Hitler had finished them off, thus relieving humanity of them.  But Hitler was more merciful than they are themselves.  They exploited this minor incident in order to extort the world.”

When respected “Scholars” are instructing the masses in this manner, it is not surprising that the entire region is aflame.  What is surprising is that the rest of the world allows, and even encourages the raging fire.  In the end, all of us will be sucked into that vortex in one way or another.  At that time, we should remember the song of Moses, and it’s introduction from Exodus chapter 13.  “And Moses said unto the people, Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord, which he will shew to you to day: for the Egyptians whom ye have seen to day, ye shall see them again no more for ever.”

106_Conrad_Cichorius,_Die_Reliefs_der_Traianssäule,_Tafel_CVIYellow Star or not, the People of the Sign have paid their dues.   After 2,520 years the Times of the Gentiles are ended.  As nations gather around Jerusalem with the evil intent of creating a valley of death the returning remnant of Israel need fear no evil.  The Rod of Iron will ensure that the Iron Dome will be effective.


Recognizing Hate

Recognizing Hate

A few days ago I blogged about Sweden’s decision to recognize a Palestinian State.  Now a non-binding British vote delivers a crushing majority for recognition of what Gatestone calls a “Racist, Terrorist, Apartheid State”.

Meanwhile, $5.4 Billion in reconstruction aid has now been promised to the Gaza strip with no requirement to disarm, nor any legitimate controls to ensure it won’t be used to rearm for war. Au Contraire – Iran is broadcasting its intentions to continue arming the Palestinians for more wars against Israel.  This linked article labels recent attacks from Gaza “the start of the ‘divine promise’ of destroying the Jewish state.”

And to complete the picture, Abbas promises a period of peace which dovetails nicely with Iran’s successful negotiations to buy the time and space that it needs to create nuclear weapons.

Recognizing hateRecognizing hate should lead to condemning and counteracting it.  Instead, when it comes to hatred against Israel, we recognize it as legitimate.  We fund it.  We give it statehood.

How on earth did we as a species arrive at an insane condition in which millions of fanatical people have become intent on destroying a tiny nation built by survivors of one of the most, if not the most, horrifying genocides ever committed?  And if that wasn’t enough, millions of “enlightened moderates” blame the victim as justification to support, arm, fund and thereby encourage the hate of the fanatics!

The short answer, imho, is that human hypocrisy is a primary source of all evil.  I like to define hypocrisy as the creation / acceptance of false equivalencies and the application of double standards.  These subtle manifestations of bias and duplicity aggregate up with horrendous results.

There are longer answers, which also provide insight into the aggregation of such hypocrisy, and also the antidote to it.  If you are interested in my take on this topic, please cast your vote for my upcoming book The Rod of Iron which provides a more complete answer.