The Russians on the prowl in the Middle East
Rapture Forum Staff: Chris
Over the past few days there have been several news articles that indicate that Russia could be making the start of their prophetic move that will finally culminate with the fulfillment of the prophecy of Ezekiel 38-39. This prophecy in Ezekiel 38-39 foretells of a Russian-led moslem coalition that attacks Israel in the end times and attempts to destroy Israel. Fortunately, the Bible tells us that this evil attack is spoiled when the God of Israel supernaturally intervenes to save Israel from what would be certain destruction from the overwhelming force of the Russian-led coalition. This weeks articles have painted a very gloomy picture as it illustrates that Russia is in my opinion beginning to make a serious move towards their prophetic destiny. One article that shows this is from the Haaretz news agency that reports:
Russia has signed deals with Syria under which it will sell it warplanes, anti-tank weapons and air defense systems, Itar-Tass news agency quoted a senior Russian arms trader as saying on Friday. Mikhail Dmitriyev, head of the Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation, said Russia would supply Syria with MiG-29 fighters and truck-mounted Pantsir short-range surface-to-air missiles and anti-aircraft artillery systems. He did not specify the kind of anti-tank weapons.
Earlier this week, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev visited Syria - the first visit to Damascus by a Moscow ruler since the 1917 Bolshevik revolution - and oversaw talks on Russia's possible assistance in building a nuclear power plant in Syria. While in Syria, Medvedev also paid a visit to Khaled Meshaal, the exiled leader of the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas. Israel's Foreign Ministry said it was "deeply disappointed" that Medvedev met the leader of Hamas, which it said was "a terror organization in every way".
From the article we can see that not only did Russia sell Syria offensive weapons that can be used against Israel, they also are selling them defensive weapons like anti-tank weapons that will cause a serious problem for Israel should a war erupt on the northern border of Israel and involving the Hezbollah and Syrian forces. As the article indicated this was a very interesting visit as no Russian leader had visited the area in nearly 100 years. This visit to Damascus may prove not to be insignificant. To me, it shows that Russia is very serious about honoring their defense pacts they have made with many Middle Eastern countries that are also enemies of Israel. A couple of years ago there was an article where Russia described Syria as their most important ally in the Middle East. While much has been made about Russia's work with Iran's nuclear program, the fact remains that Syria is very important to Russia geographically as an entry point into the Middle East. Over the past weeks and even months, the Russian have been very busy trying to get a foothold in the Middle East peace process which is currently dominated by the United States. With very little progress being made, it is my opinion that Russia sees an opportunity to increase their presence and influence in the region.
While Russia is busy selling advanced weapons to Syria, this is not the only thing they have been doing lately that is disturbing. The Russians this week have called for Hamas to be introduced into the Middle East peace talks in order to perhaps strike a deal. This suggestion met with fierce resistance by Israel and rightfully so. Hamas is a terrorist organization and it best not to diplomatically deal with terrorist organizations in order to prevent giving them legitimization in the area of their conflict. Israel was quite upset at the suggestion that Hamas be allowed to enter talks and rightfully compared the Hamas with the Chechnya rebels that are also Islamic that has caused much military and political heartburn for the Russians. Appeasing the Islamic hordes is not the thing to do. The Jerusalem Post has an article out that summarizes the current situation:
The Foreign Ministry issued an uncharacteristically sharp response on Wednesday to a Russian and Turkish call to include Hamas in the diplomatic process, drawing parallels between Hamas and Chechen terrorists and saying it was wrong to distinguish between “good” and “bad” terrorists. The statement, released at the directive of Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman, who is currently in Tokyo, said Hamas was a terrorist organization that set as its goal the destruction of Israel.
The Jerusalem Post article also went on to further state:
“Hamas people are responsible for the murder of hundreds of innocent civilians, including those who came from the former Soviet Union, and also Russian citizens,” the statement said. “It is forbidden for enlightened countries to divide terrorists into good and bad ones on the basis of geography.” It stressed that “a terrorist is a terrorist” and that Israel saw no difference whatsoever between the terrorism that Hamas deployed against Israel, and the terrorism that the Chechens used against Russia. “There is no difference between Khaled Mashaal and Shamil Basayev [a Chechen leader who was killed in 2006],” it read. “Israel always stood behind Russia in its fight against Chechen terrorism, and would have expected similar treatment regarding Hamas terrorism against Israel,”the Foreign Ministry statement said.
It is clear to me that Russia's anti-semitism has caused them a momentary lapse of reasoning that will eventually lead them to their fatal date with destiny with God in the mountains of Israel. Russia calling for the inclusion of Hamas into the peace talks is a ridiculous notion that is only going to cause Russia to be "hooked" in the jaw and to suffer their fate as described in Ezekiel 38-39. And to make matters even worse, Russia has also been moving closer to the Hezbollah terrorists as well. The YNetNews reports:
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev visited Syria this week and met with Hamas politburo Khaled Mashaal. On Wednesday, he even stated that Hamas should be included in the Middle East peace process, despite Israel's firm stand against the Islamist movement. Is Russia taking a pro-Islamic side in one of the most explosive regions in the world? A former Israeli ambassador to Russia explains that Moscow is seeking to increase its involvement, and hold, in the region. Terror organizations? It's doesn't really matter to them. "Russia doesn't view it as taking sides. That's too harsh. It's taking the middle. It wants to assume the role of the Middle East mediator," says former Ambassador Zvi Magen.
In trying to explain the recent Russia moves, the YNetNews article went on to further state:
"It believes it already has us. We are ready to talk, and now the question is who will bring the others. The Russians seek to do it before the Americans, and for this Russia needs the Syrians and both parts of the Palestinians – including Hamas." Magen says the Russians are looking for Palestinian unity, in order to bring all sides to the negotiating table, "which they want to place in Russia as part of a Middle East conference attended by all parties – all the Palestinians, the Syrians and even Hezbollah." Why is Russia engaging in these intensive efforts? "It seeks to upgrade its status. It wants to turn into a more important power. For this purpose it must activate worldwide moves, in the Middle East as well."
The article also summed up the situation in a nutshell when it said:
"Mashaal was in Moscow in March. Bibi (Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu) was there at the same time, as was Abu Mazen (Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas) and other Arab leaders. The Russians brought all the sides, one by one, and now they want to bring them all together."
While Russia is busy trying to bring all sides to the peace table, the truth is that the Bible tells us that there will be no real peace in the near future despite the efforts of the Russians. The Bible indicates that Israel will face serious conflict as the fulfillments of Psalm 83, Isaiah 17, and eventually Ezekiel 38-39 will be fulfilled before the coming seven year Tribulation period. While the timing of these events is not known for sure, it is looking more and more like these events could be in the near term future if the region where to suffer an extreme conflict. The movement of Turkey to the east and manipulating the situation on the ground further inflames the region and makes a conflict even more likely. With Russia getting friendly with the Psalm 83 and Isaiah 17 players, it is definitely getting interesting in the region. While there seems to be no sign of that slowing down, in fact it appears that the prophetic clock is moving closer and closer to midnight for the Middle East.
As we can see from these articles, the Russian bear is definitely on the move in the Middle East and this should make all Bible prophecy students sit up and take note. The tension in the region is literally so thick you could cut it with a knife. With the summer coming up and no end in sight to the Middle East peace process between the Israelis and Palestinians, this gives us even more reason to watch the prophetic clock and to keep an eye on the Middle East. I believe that Russia, whether they realize it or not, is arming their allies for what will be the fulfillments of the Psalm 83 and Isaiah 17 conflicts. Russia is getting the cast of players for these prophecies armed to fulfill their destinies as foretold by the ancient prophets. With Russia being a mainly atheistic and godless country they are not aware of the coming conflicts and their unfortunate place in them. The Russians desire to return to superpower status at any cost has blinded them so that they are falling right into the hands of the Islamic hordes which will cause them to suffer their greatest defeat at the hand of God.
I'd advise that we all keep one eye on the Middle East at all times. The movement of Turkey (another Gog/Magog ally) to the east and their rising influence in the region coupled with Russia's recent moves surely puts an ominous tone on the entire region. However, students of Bible prophecy know what is coming and so we will not be caught unawares when things start going downhill. How much of the end times prophecies we will see being fulfilled is unknown, but we do have the blessed assurance that we will not be here for the final seven years that is commonly referred to as the tribulation period. Let us continue to watch the Middle East and pray for the peace of Jerusalem. Things are getting so intense, it is possible that if you blink you could miss something. And of course in all of this, when we see the prophetic puzzle pieces moving around the end times chess board, we know that we are to look up, for our redemption is drawing nigh!