Archive for December 27th, 2007

“Jailing the Intended Victims of Honor Killings For Their Own Good” by Dr. Phyllis Chesler

Thursday, December 27th, 2007

In an attempt to protect high-profile Muslim and ex-Muslim dissidents who have had fatwas issued against them: Taslima Nasreen or Ayaan Hirsi Ali, for example, the “good” people have been forced to jail them, not their attackers. Today, Nasreen says she is a “virtual prisoner” in Delhi where, for her own safety, the Indian government has stashed her after a mob of fanatic Islamists tried to kill her. When Hirsi Ali was similarly threatened, the Dutch government was forced to essentially “jail” Hirsi Ali for her own good.

Where will this end? With all the “moderate” and dissident Muslims and ex-Muslims in jail? How big will this jail be? How much will it cost? Can the world’s governments afford this? How many people will have to be jailed before the West really understands that a new kind of war has been declared against us—one that we may have to fight in ways other than by jailing innocent civilians.

Hint: There are no civilians in this new kind of War.

What is the price of dissent? How much will governments be willing and able to pay to protect women from their own families who intend to honor-murder them? Or who control them in terrifying ways? Today, a Saudi women and her advocates are appealing to the Saudi King to save her from her own brothers who forced her to divorce her husband and the father of her children because the husband was deeemed tribally unworthy. The woman is now distraught and threatening suicide.

The British government has just announced a new program that will both better protect and prosecute honor killings in the West. The approach will follow an anti-Mafia model in that the British police now understand that the equivalent of a federal witness protection program, will be required for both intended victims and for witnesses who might be willing to testify on their behalf. (I have been talking about this kind of model for quite awhile and am glad to see such signs of potential progress in Britain).

Last night I saw Marjane Satrapi’s film “Persepolis” which is based upon her popular adult graphic novel aka a book-length comic strip of the same name. Although the film was a bit too long—it was nevertheless a highly creative, charming, feisty, and original presentation of the most sombre political history.

Her heroine, “Marjane,” is a child when Khomeini comes to power and she is a very young adult when she leaves Teheran first for Vienna and then for Paris. Marjane is a feminist warrior. (But so is her grandmother!) Both are portrayed as daring and sophisticated. The jailing, torture, and agonizing deaths of the regime’s political opponents, both male and female, is rendered in a soulful and heartbreaking way—as is the regime’s diabolical persecution of women.

On the other hand, the West, in which women are not punished for how they dress or because they dance or even sleep with men, is still not a welcoming place for a young Muslim immigrant entirely on her own. Indeed, the young Marjane ends up homeless on the streets of Vienna where she nearly dies. The difficulty of integrating into a Western-style life without any family protection or connections, sends Marjane back home to Teheran where at least she has family. Grim Iranian political reality ultimately returns her to the West.

When Westerners fight about Muslim immigration and about alleged “racism” towards Muslims, they are often talking about two distinct populations. Those who argue for an open door policy are thinking about Muslim and ex-Muslim immigrants in flight from Islamist persecution who deserve asylum in the West. Those who argue against open immigration are thinking about their Islamist persecutors and about those Muslim immigrants who mean to practice Islamic gender and religious Apartheid in the West.

Go see “Persepolis.” Read the book. Think long and hard about a pre-emptive strike against a civilian population that has already been so persecuted by its leaders. But, think even harder about whether we want such leaders and those who share their ideology to impose their evil will upon the West and upon Judaeo-Christian culture.

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Dr. Phyllis Chesler is the well known author of classic works, including the bestseller Women and Madness (1972) and The New Anti-Semitism (2003). She has just published The Death of Feminism: What’s Next in the Struggle for Women’s Freedom (Palgrave Macmillan), as well as an updated and revised edition of Women and Madness. She is an Emerita Professor of psychology and women’s studies, the co-founder of the Association for Women in Psychology (1969) and the National Women’s Health Network (1974). She is currently on the Board of Scholars for Peace in the Middle East and lives in New York City. Her website is www.phyllis-chesler.com.
We are delighted to have Dr. Chesler as a contributor to the Jesus is Lord, A Worshipping Christian’s Blog.

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“Top 10 End-Time Events of 2007” by Todd Strandberg

Thursday, December 27th, 2007

In order to know where we are headed in Bible prophecy, it’s important to keep track of where world events are headed. With this being the last full week of 2007, I decided to put together a reflective review of the top 10 prophetic events of this year.

I’ve been watching prophecy unfold for nearly 25 years, and have noticed that we often have build-up years followed by birth-pang years. This cycle fits the pattern that Jesus warned about in Matthew 24:3-8. With 2007 being one of the best build-up years I’ve ever seen, I think 2008 has a strong likelihood of being an eventful birth-pang year. With that being the case, I say we should watch these following events closely in the coming year.

1. Putin , Russia ‘s Strongman – Russian President Vladimir Putin was selected as Time’s Magazines’ “Person of the Year.” When I first heard the announcement on the news, I thought the magazines had made a selection that was akin to its previous choice of having Mikhail Gorbachev as their man for 1987 and 1989. After reading the article, the real reason was closer to why Time gave the nod to Adolf Hitler in 1938.

The reporters that went to Moscow to interview Putin found a man strangely unmoved by such a prestigious honor. “Whether he proves to be a reformer or an autocrat who takes Russia back to an era of repression—this we will know only over the next decade,” said Time.

History warns that a consolidation of power under one individual normally ends badly. Putin has almost total control of Russia . Anyone familiar with prophecy would be a fool not to notice the striking similarities between him and the Gog prophecies in Ezekiel 38 and 39. I think in 2008, the West is going to realize a new Cold War foe is brewing in the East.

2. Iran ‘s Nuclear Program – Worried that the ultimate goal is a nuclear arsenal, the United States and other countries have pressed Iran to halt uranium enrichment. A U.S. intelligence report has concluded there is no immediate danger. Israel does not share this view. It can’t wait until a mushroom cloud appears over Tel Aviv to say, “See, I told you so.”

At some point, Israel is going decide that it cannot allow Iran to get any closer to developing nuclear weapons. When that day comes, the whole dynamics of the Middle East will be instantly changed.

3. Syria , Israel ‘s Doomed Neighbor – Two key factors make Syria important to Bible prophecy. The first is that Syria is a heavily armed and a natural foe of Israel. The second reason has to do with the prophecy in Isaiah 17:1 that calls for the destruction of the city of Damascus.

We came very close to seeing a war break out between Israel and Syria. The Israeli political and military leadership took a huge gamble when they bombed a nuclear facility southwest of Damascus. As an indication of simmering desire for revenge, Syrian said this past week that it might attack Israel ‘s nuclear reactor.

4. Peace Talks – In November, there was a big meeting in the city of Annapolis. A record number of Middle East nations gathered together to talk about how the Arab nations can co-exist with the state of Israel.

The Bible warns that in the last days, Jerusalem will become a source of global contention. It will be a catalyst that will draw the world into a series of epic battles.

“And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: all that burden themselves with it shall be cut in pieces, though all the people of the earth be gathered together against it” (Zech. 12:3).

5. Oil Prices- This year is the first since the 1970s that has seen such a rapid increase in the price of petroleum. Oil traders pushed the price to record highs, at one point reaching nearly $100 a barrel.

The tight supplies for black gold makes the Middle East a very geopolitically sensitive area. Any event that disrupts the flow of oil from the Persian Gulf is guaranteed to get the world’s attention.

6. Dollar’s Collapse – One of the best measures of a nation’s strength is how well its currency trades in international markets. Over the past few years, the dollar has steadily declined in value. This year has been particularly bad for the dollar. The decline of the greenback fits well with Bible prophecy. The lack of focus on the U.S. in Bible prophecy would seem to indicate that our nation will become a secondary player in the end times.

There are already indications that America is no longer the superpower it once was. According to a headline in the Independent News, ” London has topped the most exhaustive comparison ever compiled of the world’s great cities in a finding that sees Britain ‘s capital outstrip global rivals as a centre of economic performance and cultural significance.” The world’s biggest airport, tallest building, and most active stock market are no longer located in the U.S.

7. Moral Meltdown – The decline in morality is one of the most consistent trends of any end-time indicator. Because the downturn is so gradual and broad based, it’s hard for the average person to notice the change.

In any given year, some examples stand out from others. For 2007, the high jinx of key pop media celebrities stand out in my mind as a prime example of a moral meltdown. I could pick for a long list of names, but because Britney Spears and her younger sister, Jamie Lynn, have the most-searched surname of the past two years, I’ll use them as an example.

Britney started the year in a drug rehabilitation facility, then temporarily lost custody of her two sons. Her 16-year-old sister, Jamie Lynn Spears, turned up pregnant by boyfriend Casey Aldridge, 19, who should be facing up to 10 years for statutory rape.

The moral meltdown is how the Spears sisters have continued as if nothing is wrong. Instead of being ashamed of their actions, both of them have turned to the media to trivialize their sin.

8. The EU Gets Its Act Together – One of the most under-reported story of 2007 would have to be the amazing progress the European Union has made in resolving disputes that have happened within this organization. Just a few years ago, there was talk of the EU disintegrating into nothingness. In 2004, no one knew how to move forward after France and the Netherlands rejected the EU constitution in separate referendums.

The EU is now pressing ahead with fresh leaders in France and Germany and a new game plan that doesn’t require referendum votes. Just this past week, the EU’s borderless zone expanded to nine mostly eastern European countries in its biggest enlargement so far.

The EU is important to prophecy because this is where the Antichrist will come to power.

9. Violent Crime – A new record for mass murder in America was set at Virginia Tech by Seung-Hui Cho, 23, who had avoided court-ordered mental health treatment despite a history of psychiatric problems. He killed two fellow students in a dormitory on April 16, detoured to mail a hate-filled video of himself to NBC News, then shot dead 30 students and professors in a classroom building before killing himself.

As I just reported a just couple weeks ago, just 2 miles from my house, Robert Hawkins opened fire on the third floor of the upscale Von Maur specialty department store in the Westroads Mall, killing eight and wounding five others before committing suicide.

10. China is the King of the East – With an economy booming at double digits, China has muscled itself onto the list of major world powers. As China continues to grow, it will eventually come into conflict with other major industrial powers. The desire to control the oil wealth of the Middle East could be the reason China musters an army of 200 million solders.

— Todd

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“Global Warming: The UN’s Declaration of Independence” by Jack Kinsella

Thursday, December 27th, 2007

A new Senate report on global warming shattered the myth of ‘scientific consensus’ about anthropogenic (man-made) climate change, after hearing from more than 400 prominent scientists from more than two dozen countries.

“Anthropogenic (man-made) global warming bites the dust,” declared astronomer Dr. Ian Wilson after reviewing the new study which has been accepted for publication in the Journal of Geophysical Research.

Another scientist said the peer-reviewed study overturned “in one fell swoop” the climate fears promoted by the UN and former Vice President Al Gore.

The study entitled “Heat Capacity, Time Constant, and Sensitivity of Earth’s Climate System,” was authored by Brookhaven National Lab scientist Stephen Schwartz.

Not too long ago, the chairman of the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Dr. Rahendar Pachuari, joked that there were perhaps ‘ a dozen’ skeptical scientists left in the world on the subject of climate change.

Al Gore claims a ‘universal scientific consensus’ exists that blames human activity for what he says will be catastrophic climate changes over the next fifty years.

Like Pachuari, Gore has publicly equated the global warming skeptics among the scientific community with members ‘of the Flat Earth Society.’

Gore also compared global warming skeptics to people who ‘believe the moon landing was actually staged in a movie lot in Arizona’.

A new minority Senate report on global warming shattered the myth of ‘scientific consensus’ about anthropogenic (man-made) climate change, after hearing from more than 400 prominent scientists from more than two dozen countries.

The new report issued by the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee’s office of the GOP Ranking Member details the views of the scientists, views that stand in stark contrast to those of the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

Indeed, many of the same scientists who contributed to the Senate report were themselves either current or former members of the UN’s IPCC ‘consensus’ opinion.

The Senate report lists the scientists by name, country of residence, and academic/institutional affiliation. It also features their own words, biographies, and weblinks to their peer reviewed studies and original source materials as gathered from public statements, various news outlets, and websites in 2007.

Many of the scientists featured in the report testified that many of their colleagues shared their views, but they will not speak out publicly for fear of retribution.

This is a long list, but I am going to include it because of its sheer size. The dissenting scientists listed are far from members of the “Flat Earth Society”. Instead, they are members of:

Harvard University; NASA; National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR); Massachusetts Institute of Technology; the UN IPCC; the Danish National Space Center; U.S. Department of Energy; Princeton University; the Environmental Protection Agency; University of Pennsylvania; Hebrew University of Jerusalem; the International Arctic Research Centre; the Pasteur Institute in Paris; the Belgian Weather Institute; Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute; the University of Helsinki; the National Academy of Sciences of the U.S., France, and Russia; the University of Pretoria; University of Notre Dame; Stockholm University; University of Melbourne; University of Columbia; the World Federation of Scientists; and the University of London.

Told you it was a long list!

The most comprehensive definition I could find for “consensus” is this:

“General agreement, characterized by the absence of sustained opposition to substantial issues by any important part of the concerned interests and by a process that involves seeking to take into account the views of all parties concerned and to reconcile any conflicting arguments.”

The Senate report flatly contradicts the solemn pronouncements of the mainstream media, as well, which probably explains why it isn’t exactly a “Breaking News” headline.

One would think that the opposition of so many scientists, especially given the prestige of the institutions they represent, might cause somebody to rush for a dictionary to look up the word ‘consensus’ but no such luck.

The media has been been universal in its, (forgive me) consensus opinion about scientific consensus on global warming.

“The scientific debate is over. We’re done. [Global warming skeptics] are “bought and paid for by the fossil fuel industry.” (Miles O’Brien, CNN July 23, 2007)

“There are only a “handful of skeptics” to man-made global warming fears.” (Washington Post, May 23, 2007)

“After extensive searches, ABC News has found no such [scientific] debate” on global warming. (ABC’s Bill Blakemore, August 30, 2006)

‘Science’ is supposed to be, well, scientific, which therefore suggests there is empirical evidence of sufficient weight to form a scientific ‘consensus’ — which would also then mean the end of the debate.

But 17,000 top scientists signed a letter expressing the contrary view last year. Four hundred scientists expressed their opposition before the UN Senate.

The debate continues to rage among scientists, even as Al Gore, the UNIPPC, the mainstream media and the Nobel Peace Prize Selection Committee assure us that the science is ‘settled.’

All through the 1990’s new climate models and new projections, each more terrifying than the one before, resulted in an avalanche of grant money.

Governments used their findings as fuel to run various pet energy projects, justify spending, (or the lack thereof) and provide governments with a ‘boogey-man’ to scare their constituencies with.

This isn’t conspiracy theory — it’s conspiracy fact. The scientists getting all the grant money are in ‘consensus’ — those outside the gravy train say its all baloney.

But . . . they are all looking at the same statistics!
Somebody is conspiring with somebody, here.

But for there to be a conspiracy, there must also be a motive. What is the motive for advancing the theory of man-made global warming?

Let’s connect the dots. The UN is dependent on member governments, (particularly the US) for its operations budget. That makes the UN, at least marginally, accountable to those governments.
If Congress, for example, were to cut off UN funding, it would lose both its headquarters and a quarter of its budget.

The ability to impose taxes on difficult governments, (such as the USA) turns that equation on its head, making the member governments accountable to the UN — in essence, handing the United Nations absolute sovereign power.

Absolute global power is a pretty convincing motive.
And as you go down the line, the motive, power, remains pretty static. Global warming turned Al Gore from a failed national politician into a global political superstar.

Global warming turned Dr. Heidi Cullen from a weathergirl on the Weather Channel into a global scientific authority with such prestige that her call to revoke the credentials of any meteorologist who didn’t agree with her made headlines worldwide.

Global warming offers something for everybody: power, prestige, money, control, glory . . . it reads like a Biblical list of Satan’s five ‘I wills’.

Global warming is the UN’s Declaration of Independence — if it can manage to pull off the greatest fascist power-grab in the history of the world.

Global warming has become the politician’s refuge of last resort, a sort of whipping boy that can be trotted out and blamed for anything from raising taxes to exonerating genocide.

(Witness Ban Ki Moon’s pathetic attempt to divert the blame for the genocide in Darfur away from the Islamic government in Khartoum — which might inflame the Islamic world mid-massacre — and the UN’s inaction, by claiming the conflict is the result of global warming.)

The myth of global warming runs the gamut of Biblical signs for the last days.

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Christians in India Come Under Attack

Thursday, December 27th, 2007

Christians in India are under attack again. Pray for their safety.
Many people don’t realize this, but it is against the law for missionaries to “convert” people to religions other than Hinduism. Well, to make it look like they are not wholly against the process, the law reads that all a person has to do before they convert is let the police know they are about to do it. The law also states that the police can deny them the right to convert.
In Christianity, we believe that all people are created equal. In Hinduism, there are classes of people. There is a class of people who are actually called “untouchables”. They are lowest of society and once born an untouchable, one is always an untouchable, with no way to ever achieve anything more.
With this in mind, one can see how Christianity would be preferred to Hinduism, especially for the lower classes. All people, being equal under Christianity, or always an untouchable under Hinduism.
I have always been suspect of countries, like India, and the Muslim ones, who pass laws against the presentation of other religions. What are they afraid of? Could it be that their religion cannot stand on it’s own merits? I believe this is the truth of the matter.

A curfew has been imposed in parts of the eastern Indian state of Orissa after Hindu hardliners attacked up to a dozen Christian churches, police say.

One person was killed and more than 25 injured in the violence in the Kandhamal area on Tuesday, police said.

Christians said it was sparked by Hindus objecting to a performance they were staging to celebrate Christmas.

But a Hindu group said it began when Christians tried to attack a local Hindu leader on Monday, Christmas Eve.

It said a group of people surrounded the vehicle carrying Swami Laxamananda Saraswati as he was on his way to the area. He was taken to hospital but was not seriously hurt.

Now ‘under control’

However it started, the violence appeared to culminate in the attacks on churches on Christmas Day.

Christians were chased out of several churches – in many case just mud huts with thatched roofs – before they were set alight, officials said.

One person was reported killed in the violence, but it was unclear whether that was a Hindu or a Christian.

Hundreds of police were deployed following the violence, which had largely died down by Wednesday, a local government official said.

“The situation is tense but under control,” said BB Mishra, a state inspector-general of police.

Orissa, which is mainly Hindu and has a tiny Christian minority, has seen violence between the two communities in the past.

The state has a law obliging people to ask for police permission before changing religion – thought to be a measure aimed at Christian missionaries.

Hindus have accused Christian groups of forcing low-caste people to convert.

Christians say they often convert willingly because of their treatment as outcasts.

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Ex-Pakistan Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto Has Died

Thursday, December 27th, 2007

Bhutto Murder
Image courtesy of Fox News.

Updates at Bottom.

I was just getting ready to blog about an attack on former Pakistani Prime Minister Bhutto when this just came on the email from CNN:
“Ex-Pakistan Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto has died, according to media reports.”

Here’s the news report about the attack:
Benazir Bhutto Wounded in Homicide Attack at Pakistan Rally; at Least 20 Dead

RAWALPINDI, Pakistan — Opposition leader Benazir Bhutto was undergoing surgery Thursday after she was wounded in a homicide attack that killed at least 20 other people, a party aide said.

Sen. Safdar Abbasi said Bhutto was hit in the bomb blast and was in serious condition.

“BB is serious and she is in the operating theater,” Abbasi said. Other top party leaders were at the Rawalpindi General Hospital, crying.

The bomber attacked the former prime minister’s supporters as they were leaving a rally.

An Associated Press reporter at the scene saw body parts and flesh scattered at the back gate of the Liaqat Bagh park in Rawalpindi, where the rally was held.

He counted about 20 bodies, including police, and could see many other wounded.

Update at 08:25 on 12/27/07:
Supporters of Bhutto seem to believe that the current president of Pakistan, Pervez Musharraf, is to blame.
I remember thinking to myself the day Bhutto first arrived back in Pakistan, that she was a “dead woman walking”. Between the aspirations of would be dictator Musharraf, and his minions of brain-washed Islamic lackey’s, she really didn’t stand a chance.
It will interesting to see what happens next.

Former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto Assassinated at Rally in Pakistan

RAWALPINDI, Pakistan — Pakistani opposition leader Benazir Bhutto was assassinated Thursday, shot in the neck and chest before a homicide bomber blew himself up at a campaign rally. Twenty others also died.

The assassin struck just minutes after Bhutto addressed a rally of thousands of supporters in the garrison city of Rawalpindi. She was shot as she was entering her car. Her attacker then set off his bomb.

Bhutto was rushed to the hospital and taken into emergency surgery.

“At 6:16 p.m. she expired,” said Wasif Ali Khan, a member of Bhutto’s party who was at Rawalpindi General Hospital.

“The surgeons confirmed that she has been martyred,” Sen. Babar Awan, Bhutto’s lawyer, said.

The 54-year-old former prime minister’s supporters exploded in anger, smashing the glass door at the main entrance of the hospital’s emergency unit. Others burst into tears. One man with a flag of Pakistan People’s Party tied around his head was beating his chest.

Some at the hospital began chanting, “Killer, Killer, Musharraf,” referring to President Pervez Musharraf, Bhutto’s main political opponent. A few began stoning cars outside.

“We repeatedly informed the government to provide her proper security and appropriate equipment including jammers, but they paid no heed to our requests,” said Rehman Malik, Bhutto’s security adviser.

Nawaz Sharif, another former premier and opposition leader, arrived at the hospital and sat silently next to Bhutto’s body.