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The Rapture Report - Netanyahu sworn in as Israel's prime minister

Netanyahu sworn in as Israel's prime minister
Written: 3-31-09
Rapture Forum Staff: Chris

Welcome to this edition of the Rapture Report were will be discussing the new Israeli government that is being sworn in today. Today in Israel, the newly formed government of Benjamin Netanyahu was officially sworn in and thus bringing to a close the era of disgraced Ehud Olmert. The Haaretz News agency is reporting that:

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was sworn in late Tuesday to lead Israel's 32nd government, after cobbling together a coalition amid rising tensions within his own Likud party and with other leading political figures. Lawmakers voted 69 to 45 with five abstentions in favor of Netanyahu's right-wing government after a six-hour debate, making Netanyahu prime minister for the second time in 10 years.

In addition to Netanyahu returning to the Prime Minister's office, the following important positions will be occupied by old and new faces:

Labor Party chairman Ehud Barak will retain his position as defense minister bringing with him into the government four other Labor ministers. Yisrael Beiteinu Chairman Avigdor Lieberman, whose inflammatory statements about Israeli Arabs has had him branded as racist and raised ire both in Israel and abroad, will take on the unlikely position of foreign minister.

In considering the newly formed Israeli government, Bible prophecy watchers should be very interested in the next news article given the situation with Iran. According to a Jerusalem Post article the newly formed Netanyahu government is headed by a trio of former IDF leaders. The current government is headed by Netanyahu, Barak, and Moshe "Bogie" Ya'alon. Ya'alon is a former chief of staff and a head of one of the IDF's elite units. The Jerusalem Post article gives the details:

Back when they were both in the IDF's elite General Staff Reconnaissance Unit, Binyamin Netanyahu was subordinate to Ehud Barak. Barak, Israel's most decorated soldier, was the commander of the IDF's most elite unit, known by its Hebrew name, Sayeret Matkal. Netanyahu, whose brother Yoni later became commander of the unit and was killed during the 1976 raid on Entebbe, was a junior team leader under Barak's command in the early 1970s.

Further:

Netanyahu and Barak are not the only members of the new government with origins in the army's most elite unit. Moshe "Bogie" Ya'alon, the former chief of staff slated to become the minister of strategic affairs, served as commander of the unit between 1987 and 1989.

Now, I am finding it pretty interesting that in light of the situation with Iran over their nuclear program that Israel has essentially elected a government led by very qualified former military leaders. I do believe that this is not a coincidence given the fact that it is very likely that this government will have to perform a military strike against the Iranian nuclear program. And should Israel do this, she is prepped with what I think is excellent military and political leadership to perform the task.

The Jerusalem Post article also noted this situation:

This Sayeret Matkal trio will now be leading the country's defense and security apparatuses at a time when some of the most critical decisions in the country's history will have to be made - from whether to use military force to stop Iran's race toward nuclear power, to the Hizbullah threat in Lebanon and Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

To underscore the the current leaderships positions on Iran, it was noted that:

As recently as January, Ya'alon said: "The Iranian regime is funding and arming most of the terror organizations. This wave must be stopped, and this can be achieved by diplomatic and economic isolation and, if necessary, military force." Barak has also said that military force was one of Israel's options to stop Iran. Recently he said that "time is slipping through our fingers" to stop Iran and that Israel has therefore kept the military option on the table. Netanyahu himself is believed to be a proponent of military action if diplomacy fails. In meetings he held just days before the elections in February, Netanyahu said his government would do whatever it took to stop Iran's nuclear program. "Under my government, Iran will not be allowed to go nuclear," he said at the time.

With all of this said, I believe if there was ever an Israeli government put together to handle the kind of operation needed to take care of Iran, this would definitely be the one to do it. I think Bible prophecy watchers need to remain focused on the news coming out of the Middle East as we see the window of opportunity closing on stopping Iran's evil nuclear program.

In other news, there is evidence that the formation of the new government was not without controversy. Newly installed Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman is fighting his own "Olmertesque" type situation with charges of corruption. Lieberman has been the subject of recent police interrogations and it is quite possible that he could be charged in relation to these issues. Netanyahu has been closely monitoring these developments and there was talk that if Lieberman was removed from office that Likud would name a replacement from outside of Lieberman's party. This of course did not go over well as the following Israel National News article shows:

The Yisrael Beiteinu party threatened Tuesday morning to leave the coalition being built by Likud leader Binyamin Netanyahu in response to reports that the Foreign Ministry portfolio has been promised to senior Likud members in case Yisrael Beiteinu Chairman Avigdor Lieberman is forced to step down because of criminal investigations against him.

So it looks like that before the new goverment could even get out of the starting gate there were threats to the coalitions survival. As many of us know political corruption and legal matters have been a constant to whatever government has been in office recently. This is likely to be the case with the Netanyahu government as it concerns Avigdor Lieberman. However, Lieberman has been under investigation for 13 years without being charged, so some of this could surely be political but other things might not be. I am guessing only time will tell what is going to happen here.

With the new Netanyahu government being sworn in and the window of opportunity closing in on Iran, the future fulfillment of Bible prophecy looks to be very bright. With continued problems with the Palestinians and other terrorist groups on the borders, the menacing Iranian nuclear program, etc. the future looks dark for Israel in that conflict is surely around the corner. Many prophecy teachers have speculated that the future fulfillments of Psalms 83, Isaiah 17, and even Ezekiel 38-39 could be possible shortly down the road. While exact timing is unknown, we do see that the shadows of these conflicts are definitely on the horizon and their possibility is increasing every day.

Please join with me for praying for Israel and the peace of Jerusalem. Please pray also for the new Netanyahu government as they are faced with incredible challenges that are of epic proportions.

God bless.


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