The question of whether or not the current events taking place in Syria are connected to the End Times is a "legitimate question," says an author and expert on the Middle East and End Times prophecy.
Joel C. Rosenberg, New York Times bestselling author of books such as The Last Days and Epicenter, and founder of the pro-Israel The Joshua Fund, told The Christian Post that such speculations should be taken with caution, but are legitimate ponderings. "I think we have to be very careful not to overreach or to sensationalize a terrible situation that's happening to real people right now and to draw a conclusion too quickly," said Rosenberg. "That being said, the prophecies of Isaiah 17 and Jeremiah 49 are very important. They speak to the utter destruction and judgment of the city of Damascus at some point in the End Times future."
Rosenberg, whose bestselling novels often feature end times themes, also told CP that "these prophecies have never been fulfilled in history so far." more >>
Now that the attacks on Egypt's Christian churches have subsided, stage two of the jihad - profiting from the fear and terror caused by stage one - is setting in.
Reports are arriving that the Muslim Brotherhood and its supporters are forcing the roughly 15,000 Christian Copts of Dalga village in south Minya province to pay jizya - the money, or tribute that conquered non-Muslims historically had to pay to their Islamic overlords "with willing submission and while feeling themselves subdued" to safeguard their existence, as indicated in Koran 9:29.
According to one priest from the area, all Copts in the village, "without exception," are being forced to pay tribute, just as their forefathers did nearly 1400 years ago when the sword of Islam originally invaded Christian Egypt. He said that the "value of the tribute and method of payment differ from one place to another in the village, so that, some are being expected to pay 200 Egyptian pounds per day, others 500 Egyptian pounds per day…" more >>
A Sept. 11 march on the United States capital aimed at drawing attention to Americans' alleged discrimination against Muslims has drawn the ire of patriotic followers of Muslim Prophet Muhammad who see it as a slight against America.
"These guys are basically exploiting an annual commemoration of an attack in which America lost over 3,000 lives to radical Islam," Dr. Zuhdi Jasser, author of A Battle for the Soul of Islam: An American Muslim Patriot's Fight to Save His Faith and president of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy(AIFD), told The Christian Post in a Tuesday interview. "It's part of this lobby of Islamist groups in America that believe America is to blame rather than taking ownership."
The Missouri-based American Muslim Political Action Committee (AMPAC) scheduled the event for Sept. 11, 2013, to commemorate the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, but not in the traditional spirit of such meetings. Refusing to attribute the attacks to Islamic extremists, AMPAC is focusing on discrimination against Muslims. "Muslim and non-Muslim alike were traumatized, but we as Muslims continue 12 years later to be victimized by being made the villains," the group said in a statement. more >>
Radical Islamism, the ideology behind the Sept. 11, 2001, attack on the World Trade Center, also fuels the conflict in Syria, Middle East experts agree. They disagree, however, on the degree of support which the United States should give to the forces opposing President Bashar Al-Assad.
M. Zuhdi Jasser, vice chair of the United States Commision on International Religious Freedom and president of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy (AIFD), told The Christian Post Tuesday, "9/11 woke up America to a symptom of a deeper disease, and that disease is what produces militant groups like al Qaeda or radical Islamism." He argued that "the core issue is not the militants, it's the ideology of political Islam."
Jasser, who is Syrian American, argued that this worldview grew from a conflict between secular governments and radical Muslims in the Middle East over the past century. "The Muslim Brotherhood cut its teeth fighting Nasser, Sadat and Mubarak," he explained. Without a Muslim government, they argued, national fascist dictators will enforce their tyrannical rule by military authority. more >>
A recently closed church property belonging to the Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut will soon be leased to a local Muslim group as part of an interfaith partnership.
The Diocese recently announced the creation of the partnership that provides the Farmington Valley American Muslim Center with facilities used by the former Christ Episcopal Church of Avon.
Dr. Khamis Abu-Hasaballah, president of the FVAMC, told The Christian Post that they are "thrilled" by the interfaith partnership and plan to move into the Avon property soon. more >>
Any diplomatic initiative on Syria coming from Russia, whose UN votes have perpetuated Assad's killing machine for over two years, should be viewed with extreme suspicion. Nevertheless, the latest Russian proposal merits serious consideration.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov's proposal, which exploited an offhand remark by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, calls for the destruction of Syria's chemical weapons arsenal in exchange for a cancellation of the U.S. military action against Syria being debated by Congress. Russian national interests underlie this proposal: helping Russia's last Mideast client state to survive, reinforcing the image of Russia as a Mideast power broker, and diminishing the perception that Russia supports chemical weapons use. But these interests intersect with US interests insofar as a diplomatic solution decreases the odds of an Islamist takeover of Syria (should U.S. strikes actually alter the balance of power between the Syrian regime and the opposition) while possibly removing the need for potentially risky and costly U.S. military action -- without further undermining U.S. credibility.
The humanitarian justification for intervention -- with over two million Syrian refugees and 110,000 dead -- grows stronger by the day. The geo-strategic reasons for U.S. action are also manifest: Syria's chemical weapons could be used unpredictably by the Assad regime, its terrorist ally Hezbollah, or Islamist rebels; rogue regimes like North Korea and Iran will view U.S. inaction as a green light to oppose U.S. interests where they see fit (particularly with respect to their nuclear plans); and the toppling of Assad's regime -- Iran's closest ally -- would weaken the Iranian regime while signaling that it is next unless diplomacy quickly resolves the Iranian nuclear standoff. more >>