It started with a series of attacks launched by the Iranians, against a Saudi oil field, against a US Navy drone and finally against a US base in Iraq in which an American civilian was killed. So the US ordered air attacks against five Hezbollah bases located in Iraq. Targets included the headquarters of the Kataib Hezbollah militia closely linked to Iran through Tehran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard. Iran countered by organizing an attack on the American embassy in Baghdad. Thousands of rioters broke in.[i] That was enough! Acting on intel of an impending terror operation against US targets, President Trump ordered a drone strike that would take out Iran’s top military commander, General Qassem Soleimani along with two other generals and a colonel along with some others.[ii]
The days that followed were filled with chaos. Iran threatened revenge and warned that if we reacted to their retaliatory attacks there would be further hell to pay. Hal Turner reported that “US Spy satellites picked up what APPEARED to be fueling of rockets inside Iran. Spy planes sent for a closer look have confirmed missiles are fueled on the coastal regions of Iran.” All Iranian missiles systems were prepared for launch, and Syrian officials said that “preparations have been made for rocket fire by Iranian militias in Damascus region.” It was uncertain whether the missiles would be launched “from Damascus into Iraq or into Israel.”[iii] The President ordered more troops to the region and brought “six B-52 Stratofortress bombers to Diego Garcia, a military hub that acts as a strategic location for operations in both the Middle East and the Pacific. Citing a U.S. official, CNN on Monday reported that the Cold War-era bomber will be ‘available for operations against Iran if ordered.’”[iv]
Meanwhile, Dems in Congress wrung their hands and called Trump a war criminal for protecting the lives and interests of Americans without direct Congressional approval. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was introducing a new ‘War Powers Resolution’ to tie the President’s hands on responding to Iranian aggression without congressional approval. Ilhan Omar, Bernie Sanders, Joe Biden, and Elizabeth Warren were among those criticizing the President and in Omar’s case, vowing to stop him. The fact is however, that Soleimani is responsible for the deaths of thousands of Americans. Taking out the Iranian general was NOT an illegal act as Democrats claimed. Even Alan Dershowitz, staunch liberal-Democrat and famed Harvard Law Professor weighed in with that opinion. It was a considered and dispassionate defense of the Mr Trump’s action. “The president has the constitutional authority to take military actions, short of declaring war, that he and his advisers deem necessary to protect American citizens. This authority is extremely broad, especially when the actions must, by their nature, be kept secret from the intended target.” However, Pelosi’s resolution would state “that if no further Congressional action is taken, the Administration’s military hostilities with regard to Iran cease within 30 days.” The current law adapted in 1973, gives a president freedom of action for 60 days.[v] [What this really is – is an attempt to make it appear that President Trump has committed either an impeachable offense – (because they know they’ve got nothing on that front right now) – or a war crime subject to international law.]
Back on the Middle Eastern front, Soleimani’s daughter – who happens to be a US citizen – is threatening “the deaths of American soldiers” as well as “suicide attacks on our borders. Perhaps more seriously, another top Iranian commander, Secretary of Iran’s Expediency Council Mohsen Rezayee tried to tie in Israel, saying: “If the US takes any action after our military response, we will level Tel Aviv and Haifa to the ground.” President Trump warned against action against US interests. “Let this serve as a WARNING that if Iran strikes any Americans, or American assets, we have………targeted 52 Iranian sites (representing the 52 American hostages taken by Iran many years ago), some at a very high level & important to Iran & the Iranian culture, and those targets, and Iran itself, WILL BE HIT VERY FAST AND VERY HARD. The US wants no more threats.”[vi] Iran has threatened to strike 35 American targets including ships in the region.
The fallout from the stand-off is potentially life changing – not just in the region but possibly worldwide. Many voices were predicting World War III would come out of this stand-off. Future’s expert, Gerald Celente called it “a very, very sad day” in his life. “As a trends forecaster I look into the future, and the future that I see is that the first shot of World War III has been fired.” Celente went on to talk about the new style of warfare that could be unleashed. This would include “cyberattacks, hypersonic weapons, drones by the tens of thousands dropping bombs, dropping chemical biological warfare.” He also pointed to the potential effects on the economy. It’s going to have an effect on the price of gold and therefore the value of the dollar. Gold will go up seriously. “It’s the fear of what smart people know this means. There are psychopaths in charge and the people are fearful… it’s going to get worse.’ These are the Iranians — they’re going to fight to the death. There’s a sickness that’s prevailing now, and if we don’t have peace on earth we’re going to have a wipeout of a major portion of civilization and (almost) all living things.”[vii]
And don’t think the danger is limited to the Middle East. Iran has in place Iranian and proxy-run terror sleeper cells throughout the United States. In 2019 Ali Kourani was convicted of terror related charges in the US. “Ali Kourani and Samer el Debek—were tasked with carrying out pre-operational surveillance for potential Hezbollah attacks in the United States and Panama….. Kourani was directed to identify Israelis in New York who could be targeted by Hezbollah and to find people from whom he could procure arms that Hezbollah could stockpile in the area. Kourani also conducted surveillance of New York and Toronto airports as well as of FBI, Secret Service and U.S. military facilities in New York City.” As reported by the Washington Institute, “Kourani went on to describe himself to the FBI as being part of a ‘sleeper cell,’ and explained, ‘There would be certain scenarios that would require action or conduct by those who belonged to the cell.’ Kourani said that in the event that the United States and Iran went to war, the U.S. sleeper cell would expect to be called upon to act. And if the United States were to take certain unnamed actions targeting Hezbollah, Nasrallah himself, or Iranian interests, Kourani added, ‘in those scenarios the sleeper cell would also be triggered into action.’”[viii]
This is just the tip of the iceberg. The FBI has stated publicly that there are terror cells embedded in every state in the Union. [This ministry has first and second hand knowledge of radical Islamic enclaves in the Western New York area. Illegal infiltration into the area by Middle Eastern appearing men has been observed and reported to ATP with boats coming across the Niagara River both above and below the Falls.] Mike Adams of Natural News goes into some detail on the danger from terror cells in the current situation. He begins by describing what they are and how they work. “The way these terror networks operate is by fitting in with society while waiting for the once-in-a-lifetime command to ‘activate,’ at which point they carry out deadly attacks on various targets that would produce the highest casualties, via asymmetric warfare. In other words, these terror cells are your neighbors, your local dry cleaner owners, Uber drivers and retail workers. They’re everyday people who have spent years embedding themselves in society, but their long-term goal is to destroy America by any means necessary.”
Adams argues convincingly that terror attacks will be aimed at the cities, making high-casualty events possible. Targets include power grid sub-stations, water delivery systems, food distribution, refineries. The use of bio-weapons is also a possibility. We could see coordinated attacks on multiple cities at the same time. He describes the likely weapons as “mortars, suicide vests, mass shootings [and] drone attacks.” Adams explains what he sees as the Iranian strategy that will be used against America. “Cities are artificial constructs that rely on a steady stream of food, electricity, fuel, bandwidth and water to survive. When any one of those is cut off, cities begin to rapidly collapse into chaos and panic.
There’s no doubt that Iran’s terror cells will be counting on this ‘chaos factor’ when they plan their upcoming attacks.”
The Real Enemy We Face
So we train and prepare for a physical enemy hoping to develop the right strategy. Yet that is not the real enemy we face. Our real enemy is spiritual in nature and can only really be dealt with on a spiritual plane. “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.” (Ephesians 6:12-13)
The evil that we face is something quite unique in our god-sanitized West, in that it employs human emotion and will that is driven by religious fervor. It goes, in fact, quite past the point of radicalism to a term that may have been coined by Joel Rosenberg. He calls it ‘Apocalyptic Islam.’ It is the quest for the return of the Mahdi, set to return only in a time of great chaos. That is what will bring about the triumph of Islam as the world’s dominant religion.
We could see that emotionalism on display in dramatic fashion in the memorial events that followed. The Ayatollah Khamenei cried and threatened the US. And over a million took to the streets for the funeral. The event triggered a tragic stampede that resulted in the death of as many as 32 mourners along with about 190 injured. They were giving voice to the religious longing of the true believers in the Radical / Apocalyptic vision of the ‘Religion of Peace.’
The religious leaders of Iran believe with all their hearts that the Mahdi, the Islamic messiah will return soon and that they must prepare the way by aiding in bringing about the chaos that will enable his arrival. The secular leaders are on board with that scenario too. In their view, the Mahdi will arise at a time of global chaos, – first to unite the Muslim world and then to unite the world with the sword. He will lead victorious armies that will conquer Jerusalem, while ruling the entire globe and hunting down and killing Jews and Christians. The present world situation is preparation for his imminent return.
The Islamic view of the Last Days bears some similarity to the Biblical scenario before it veers wildly off-track. The onset of those days is to be preceded by moral decay, and natural and cosmic disasters. Then will come a “Tempter” or Dajjal, who will lead all but the true Muslims astray. This is to be followed by the return of Jesus, who will kill Dajjal, ending his evil reign. It will be this Islamic form of Jesus – called Issa – that will declare himself to always have been Muslim – and hunt down and kill Christians and Jews. In all of this he will serve as the lieutenant, if you will, to the Mahdi. This action will be followed by a Messianic reign under the Mahdi, who will triumph in a struggle with evil in the form of Yajuj and Majuj. This is the Islamic version of the Gog / Magog struggles described in Ezekiel 38 & 39. Many Muslims believe that we are now living in the time leading up to the end of the age. Their traditions tell them that this will be a period of struggle with West and with Israel. Violent Jihad is the natural outworking of this philosophy.[ix] So a war would fit their purpose of creating chaos. But are they truly willing to pay the price that would be paid? Let us pray, for mankind’s sake, that they are not so foolish as to make that bet.
The revenge attacks by Iran finally came. Over a dozen missiles targeted bases housing American units in Iraq. Thankfully, there were no American casualties. President Trump sought to diffuse the situation by not returning fire. He signaled a cooling off when he tweeted: “All is well! Missiles launched from Iran at two military bases located in Iraq. Assessment of casualties & damages taking place now. So far, so good!” The Iranian Foreign Minister let out a statement that Iran had engaged in “proportionate measures” and a hot situation looked like it was slowly diffusing.[x] And Iranian commander said of the missile strikes, “We did not intend to kill.”[xi] The West even seemed ready to shrug off the downing of a Ukrainian airliner by Iranian missiles that had left Tehran, calling it an error. As things cooled, the world seemed to breathe a collective sigh of relief. The stock market headed north again. And then the Iranians flipped.
One Iranian military commander promised “harsher revenge.” The Ayatollah himself said the attacks were not enough. And the Commander of the Revolutionary Guard’s Aerospace Force announced that that first strike was just “the first stage of a major regional operation aimed at expelling U.S. forces from the Middle East.” Small level attacks were launched by Iranian-backed militias against US forces in Iraq. Israel conducted air strikes on militia targets near the Syria-Iraq border. Analyst and commentator Michael Snyder believes that “even if President Trump is absolutely determined to keep the U.S. out of a major conflict there will still be a war between Israel and Iran.” True or not, he summed up the situation nicely when he wrote: “Iran correctly perceives that Trump does not want a war, but if Trump gets pushed too far he will hit the Iranians extremely hard. And once the Iranian homeland starts getting pummeled by U.S. missiles, the Iranians will start firing some of the 200,000 missiles that they have stockpiled at Israel, and needless to say the Israelis will respond with even greater force. In other words, any escalation of this conflict at this point has the potential to spark World War 3.”[xii]
WHERE THE REAL WAR LIES
So let’s talk about what’s really going on here. It is much more than what we can witness in the earthly realm. This is spiritual warfare. There are “powers and principalities,” Satan’s lieutenants that are operating in this equation. One of the clearest examples of this principle can be found in Daniel 10. Daniel is fasting and praying – for three weeks as it turns out – seeking God and His wisdom. A powerful angel is immediately sent to Daniel, but the Bible tells us that it takes three-weeks for the Angel to get there. This powerful angel, sent by God, was resisted and needed the help of one of the Big Boys – the Archangel Michael – to deliver his message. This is describing a battle in the heavens – with one of Satan’s princes. And as a coincidental matter of fact, it was the prince assigned to Persia, which of course, is modern day Iran. Here’s the passage, Daniel 10:12-14.
“Then he said to me, ‘Do not fear, Daniel, for from the first day that you set your heart to understand, and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard; and I have come because of your words. But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me twenty-one days; and behold, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, for I had been left alone there with the kings of Persia. Now I have come to make you understand what will happen to your people in the latter days, for the vision refers to many days yet to come.’”
There is so much more going on in this Iranian situation than what we can perceive from the news. The real battle is in the spiritual realm. The conflict there governs actions here on earth. And in a way that’s good news, because through our prayers we can be part of that action. “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood.” That is why we need the full armor of God! Satan’s minions are still at war with mankind. And we are the prize. But good news! Christ wins in the end! Abide in Him.
[i] Rioters storm US embassy in Iraq, Israel National News, December 31, 2019
[ii] The moment drone missiles killed Qassem Soleimani, Daily Mail, January 3, 2020
[iii]U.S. SATELLITES AND SPY PLANES SEE **FUELED** MISSILES ON IRAN COAST, Hal Turner Radio, January 5, 2020
[iv] Air Force Sends B-52 Bombers to Diego Garcia, Military.com, January 6, 2020
[v] Geoffrey Grider, NANCY PELOSI CRAFTING A NEW ‘WAR POWERS RESOLUTION’ THAT WILL PROTECT IRAN AND ACCUSE PRESIDENT TRUMP OF ‘WAR CRIMES’, NTEB, January 6, 2020
[vi] Iran Commander Says They Will “Level Tel Aviv and Haifa”, Hal Turner Radio, January 5, 2020
[vii] The Shot That Rocked The World, King World News, January 4, 2020
[viii] Matthew Levitt, Inside Hezbollah’s American Sleeper Cells, The Washington Institute, August 4, 2019
[ix] Jihad, Apocalypse, and Anti-Semitism, An Interview with Richard Landes, Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, September 1, 2004
[x] What You Need to Know About Iran’s Attacks on U.S. Bases in Iraq, Vice News, January 8, 2020
[xi] ‘We did not intend to kill,’ Iranian commander says of missile strike, Washington Post, January 9, 2020
[xii] Michael Snyder, Now The Iranians Are Promising More Military Action Against U.S. Forces, The Economic Collapse,
January 9, 2020