This Week in the News

Bolton Contradicts Trump on Withdrawal from Syria

The Jewish Telegraph Agency wrote on January 7:

“U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton said in Israel that there is no timeline for a U.S. withdrawal from Syria and that American troops will remain until the Islamic State is defeated.

“Bolton met Sunday with Israeli security and intelligence officials to reassure them over the withdrawal unexpectedly announced by President Donald Trump last month… Bolton reportedly disagrees with the withdrawal decision.

“Trump also walked back the timetable on Sunday, telling reporters he had ‘never said we were doing it that quickly.’”

Of course he did say that. On his program of January 7, Shepard Smith of Fox News made this VERY clear. One wonders what is going on behind the scene. General Mattis resigned over President Trump’s announcement that American troops would be withdrawn from Syria “immediately.” Is John Bolton speaking for the President, and with his consent? The next article wonders about this too.

Axios wrote on January 7:

“Trump now says U.S. troops will withdraw ‘at a proper pace while at the same time continuing to fight ISIS and doing all else that is prudent and necessary.’ He initially announced: ‘They’re all coming back, and they’re coming back now.’…

“There is a pattern of ‘Trump saying we’re getting out and his advisers saying we’re staying in,’ Philip Gordon of the Council on Foreign Relations says. Gordon… [says] the moment of truth may be when Trump is asked about the apparent contradictions between his statements on Syria and Bolton’s: ‘I guess we’ll find out then if Bolton actually speaks for the president or if we’re back to “ISIS is defeated and we’re getting out.”’…

“The bottom line: ‘The danger of such inconsistency is that America’s word becomes meaningless, leading allies to doubt Washington’s promises and adversaries its resolve,’ writes Joel Rubin of the Washington Strategy Group. ‘… it’s unclear how committed he is to the Syria withdrawal.’”

And that IS the bottom line: America is perceived as being unreliable and its promises as being meaningless. First, President Trump shot from the hip when he announced on Twitter that American troops would withdraw now and immediately. When General Mattis tried to talk him out of that plan, he did not react kindly, so General Mattis resigned. Subsequently, John Bolton, Senator Graham and others were seemingly successful in getting President Trump to change his mind. But how long will it last? Regardless, the damage towards America’s allies has been done.

Turkey Unwilling to Give Assurances to USA

Deutsche Welle wrote on January 8:

“Bolton said on Sunday, in Israel, that he would seek assurances that Turkey would not harm US-allied Kurdish forces in Syria, a condition of the withdrawal…

“Erdogan gave a fiery speech to parliamentarians from his Law and Justice Party (the AKP), saying Bolton made a ‘serious mistake’ calling for the condition. ‘We cannot make any concessions,’ he told his party’s MPs. ‘Those involved in a terror corridor in Syria will receive the necessary punishment.’

“The United States fought alongside and supported the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) militant group in Syria against the so-called ‘Islamic State.’ Kurds in Iraq also fought against IS militants in alliance with NATO powers, while Turkey is fighting an insurgency within its own borders against Kurdish groups.”

The Guardian wrote on January 8:

“Turkey has asked Washington to hand over its bases in Syria as the Trump administration appeared to reverse plans to withdraw from the country’s north-east on Tuesday, jeopardising Ankara’s plans to launch a widespread military operation targeting Kurdish groups…”

The relationship between Turkey and the USA is bound to deteriorate further, as prophesied in the Bible.

Former Presidents Debunk Trump’s Claim that They Support a Border Wall

The Week wrote on January 7:

“President Trump claimed last week that former presidents had told him that they supported the idea of building a wall on the southern border…

“All four living ex-presidents told The Washington Post on Monday that this is untrue. Former President Barack Obama’s spokesman referred to previous comments in which Obama said a wall would ‘run counter to our history as the world’s melting pot,’ while former President Jimmy Carter said he does ‘not support [Trump] on the issue.’ Representatives for former Presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton said they had never discussed the matter with Trump.”

The Huffington Post added on January 8:

“Vice President Mike Pence on Tuesday struggled to back President Donald Trump’s lie that former presidents have affirmed their support for his proposed border wall… attempting to claim that the president meant that it had been ‘his impression’ and that he meant ‘the importance of border security.’”

Trump’s Case for a Border Wall

The Associated Press reported on January 8:

“President Donald Trump made a somber televised plea for border wall funding Tuesday night, seeking an edge in his shutdown battle with congressional Democrats as he declared there is ‘a humanitarian crisis, a crisis of the heart and a crisis of the soul.’… saying it was ‘immoral’ for ‘politicians to do nothing.’

“Responding in their own televised remarks, Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer accused Trump of misrepresenting the situation on the border as they urged him to reopen closed government departments and turn loose paychecks for hundreds of thousands of workers…

“Trump used emotional language, referring to Americans who were killed by people in the country illegally, saying: ‘I’ve met with dozens of families whose loved ones were stolen by illegal immigration. I’ve held the hands of the weeping mothers and embraced the grief-stricken fathers. So sad. So terrible.’

“The president often highlights such incidents, though studies over several years have found immigrants are less likely to commit crimes than people born in the United States.

“Trump has been discussing the idea of declaring a national emergency to allow him to move forward with the wall without getting congressional approval for the $5.7 billion he’s requested. But he did not mention that Tuesday night… Trump embraced the ceremonial trappings of his office as he tries to exit a political quagmire of his own making. For weeks he has dug in on a signature campaign promise to his base voters, the pledge to build an impregnable ‘beautiful’ wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.”

Deutsche Welle wrote on January 9:

“For his inaugural prime-time television address to the nation two years after taking office and during one of the longest government shutdowns in recent memory, President Donald Trump… could have used the bully pulpit accorded to US presidents to present himself as the true leader of the country, one who will earnestly try to bridge the gaping divide that threatens to tear the nation apart.

“… Instead… Donald Trump has once again shown he is incapable or unwilling to fulfill a key requirement for a president: To unite, not divide the nation.”

Shutdown to Continue

The Guardian wrote on January 5:

“Donald Trump said [the partial government shutdown] could go on for months or years, if he is not given funding for a wall on the Mexican border…

The Week wrote on January 5:

“President Trump… [asserted] in a… tweet that everyone ‘other than drug dealers, human traffickers, and criminals’ wants the wall ‘very badly.’ Recent polling shows just one in four Americans say shutting down the government is better than accepting no wall funding.”

CNBC wrote on January 9:

“President Donald Trump on Wednesday stormed out of a meeting with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer over an ongoing partial government shutdown, calling it ‘a total waste of time.’

“The breakdown in already fraught negotiations over border wall funding, which have kept nine federal agencies shut down for 19 days and counting, appeared to heighten the possibility that Trump might declare a national emergency.

“‘I asked what is going to happen in 30 days if I quickly open things up, are you going to approve Border Security which includes a Wall or Steel Barrier? Nancy said, NO,’ Trump explained in a tweet… ‘I said bye-bye, nothing else works!’ Trump added.”

Affecting Air Travel

The Associated Press wrote on January 8:

“The partial government shutdown is starting to affect air travel. Over the weekend, some airports had long lines at checkpoints, apparently caused by a rising number of security officers calling in sick… Safety inspectors aren’t even on the job.”

Please view our new prophecy program, titled, “The Ongoing Shutdown– Comments on News and Prophecy (January 5, 2019)” 

Tax Refunds Still To Be Sent Out

The Week wrote on January 7:

“Lawyers for the Trump administration ruled on Monday that the Internal Revenue Service will be able to issue tax refunds, despite the government shutdown. During earlier shutdowns, including one last year, the IRS said it would not send out any refunds.

“A senior official with the Office of Management and Budget told The Washington Post it was decided that processing tax refunds is similar to paying Social Security benefits, which is allowed during a government shutdown. Since the shutdown started on Dec. 22, 90 percent of IRS staffers have had to stay home without pay…”

Food Stamps to Continue through February

Axios wrote on January 8:

“The Department of Agriculture announced Tuesday that it has found a way to continuing providing food stamps to millions of Americans during the month of February, despite the government shutdown.”

Trump Did Not Realize what a Shutdown Would Do!

The Intelligencer wrote on January 7:

“Just as Trump did not expect to win the election and neglected to plan for his transition, he shut down the government on a whim, after right-wing media complained about his plan to approve a government funding bill. Nobody in the administration had a clear understanding of just what a shutdown would entail…

“Trump appears to have no endgame in mind. He told Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer he would ‘look foolish’ if he agreed to reopen the government without extracting concessions. But Democrats have no incentive to give him any. Voters in general tend to blame the president for problems… it especially holds true when the president personally engineers the calamity and announces beforehand on camera that he won’t blame the other side for it…”

And that is the big problem in other areas as well: How much WOULD President Trump understand when it comes to actions of war which might threaten the very survival of the USA?

USA Today wrote on January 9:

“… the shutdown’s most obvious impact has come in the form of trash pileups and overflowing toilets at national parks, where bathrooms have been closed and garbage is not getting picked up…

Accidents like last week’s horrific crash in Florida that killed seven people — five of them children on the way to Disney World – will not be investigated by the National Transportation Safety Board… Transportation Security Agency officers… are no longer just calling in sick. Now… some are resigning… the situation poses a… massive security risk for American travelers… At the very least.. the shutdown will mean increased wait times for travelers going through security checkpoints…”

CBS Chicago added on January 9:

“Funds from an emergency farm-aid bill are frozen and government employees who offer several services to farmers are [prevented from working]… This is happening on top of less demand for American crops as China retaliates in response to President Trump’s tariffs. Farmers… have to store much of the biggest soybean crop ever.”

Astronomical Health Care Prices in USA

Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School for Public Health wrote on January 7:

“The United States, on a per capita basis, spends much more on health care than other developed countries [which] was due mainly to higher prices—including higher drug prices, higher salaries for doctors and nurses, higher hospital administration costs and higher prices for many medical services.

“… the U.S… health care spending [was] about 25 percent higher than second-place Switzerland… It was also 108 percent higher than Canada… it was more than double… the U.S. spent per capita on health care in 2000…

“Not only does the U.S outspend other OECD countries, on the whole it has less access to many health care resources…”

An abominable report on America’s failing health care system.

Trump Cuts Aids to California’s Fire Victims

Roll Call wrote on January 9:

“President Donald Trump on Wednesday said he has ordered FEMA to withhold funds from California’s state government until officials there ‘get their act together’ fighting forest fires. But he tweeted he thinks that is ‘unlikely.’

“The president long has criticized California state officials, sometimes with dubious claims, over wildfires there and their steps to prevent and nix them. But stopping the flow of federal funds is an escalation of the feud, and one that might raise the ire of lawmakers — even the sizable House GOP delegation from the Golden State.

“Trump appeared… unconcerned that cutting off the FEMA aid might put more people at risk of injury, death or losing their homes…”

This is indeed a major blow to past, current and future fire victims of California.

Europe to Defend Its Interest against Trump

Euractiv wrote on January 3:

“[Manfred Weber,] the EPP’s Group leader in the European Parliament and candidate for the EU Commission top office said Europe does not want a trade conflict. ‘We have tried everything to make dialogue and mutual understanding prevail. If President Trump decides to treat Europe as an enemy, we will have no choice but to defend the European industry, European jobs, European interests,’ the German conservative politician emphasised. ‘This will have consequences for the American people too. In a trade conflict there are only losers,’ Weber added.

“The Bavarian politician also said the new situation with increased US isolation, should be seen as a wake-up call for Europeans to be the ‘bridge-builders’ and reliable partners towards the rest of the world.”

Europe will fill the gap “for the rest of the world,” created by America’s exclusivist policies.

Trump Downgrades Diplomatic Status of EU

Deutsche Welle wrote on January 8:

“The Trump administration has downgraded the diplomatic status of the European Union’s delegation to the United States… The demotion happened at the end of last year without notice… ‘I can confirm that this has not been well received in Brussels,’ [an EU official] said…

“The diplomatic downgrade of the EU’s mission in Washington appears to be in line with what is widely being perceived as an anti-EU stance by the Trump administration. Trump was an avid supporter of Britain’s exit from the European Union during his presidential campaign, and as president has repeatedly lashed out against the European Union on issues such as trade or defense.

“In a major foreign policy speech in Brussels in early December, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo praised Trump, a self-declared nationalist, and urged European countries to reassert their national sovereignty vis-a-vis the EU…”

The Guardian added on January 8:

“The change… potentially means that the EU mission would have less clout and access to US officials… ‘This is a gratuitous and entirely unreasonable swipe at the EU by the Trump administration,’ said Nicholas Burns, who was under secretary of state for political affairs in the George W Bush administration.

“‘It coincides with Trump’s campaign to depict the EU as a competitor, and not a partner, of the US. It continues the administration’s delegitimization of… the supranational organization that is the EU. Americans should remember that the EU is our largest trade partner and largest investor in our economy,’ Burns added. ‘Trump’s entire policy toward the EU continues to be misguided and ineffective.’”

Deutsche Welle wrote on January 9:

“The US Congress has been sent an open letter by EU parliamentarians fuming over the sidelining of the EU’s mission in Washington. The MEPs again accuse President Donald Trump of eroding trans-Atlantic relations.

“[The] letter published Wednesday by the 58-member EU parliamentary Delegation for Relations with the United States slammed the White House’s ‘increasingly harmful approach’ to trans-Atlantic relations and urged Congress to help ‘strengthen and not undermine’ ties… The EU signatories urged Congress to build on a ‘long-cherished’ trans-Atlantic relationship. ‘This is no way to treat partners,’ they wrote…

“The delegation’s letter specifically takes aim at President Trump, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and US Ambassador to the EU Gordon Sondland. ‘They lambast the EU as bureaucratic, make no secret of their preference to deal with individual member state governments bilaterally, and have praised populist and nationalist movements,’ wrote the delegation in its open letter.

“In a resolution passed last September, the European Parliament said it regretted ‘that the current US administration has chosen a one-sided “America first” policy that harms the interests of both the EU and the US and undermines mutual trust.’”

Whatever the practical consequence of this downgrade might be, the Europeans are again VERY unhappy with President Trump. But there is more. Note the next article.

US State Department Warns of China AND Europe!

Business Insider wrote on January 3:

“The US State Department has issued a travel advisory urging Americans to ‘exercise increased caution’ when traveling to the People’s Republic of China. The State Department’s elevated travel advisory is out of concern that China may arbitrarily enforce local laws and detain US citizens without cause.

“‘Chinese authorities have asserted broad authority to prohibit US citizens from leaving China by using ‘exit bans,’ sometimes keeping US citizens in China for years,’ the State Department said in its advisory. ‘US citizens may be detained without access to US consular services or information about their alleged crime,’ the State Department said. ‘US citizens may be subjected to prolonged interrogations and extended detention for reasons related to “state security.”’ ‘Security personnel may detain and/or deport US citizens for sending private electronic messages critical of the Chinese government,’ the agency added.

The new China travel advisory is a level-two advisory, which urges increased caution. A level-one advisory suggests travelers ‘exercise normal precautions,’ while a level-three advisory urges Americans to ‘reconsider travel.’ A level-four advisory recommends that Americans avoid traveling to a particular country.

“Other countries or regions with a level-two advisory include Algeria, Antarctica, Belgium, France, Germany, Denmark, Myanmar, and the United Kingdom.”

The level-two travel advisory towards China seems more than justified, based on the facts reported in this article. BUT that the USA has such two-level travel advisories in place against its closest European allies is quite ridiculous.

In addition, as Handelsblatt reported on January 9, “The US and European Union have not made progress in solving their trade dispute, EU Commissioner Cecila Malmström said after a visit to Washington D.C..”

The Curse of Nuclear Weapons Tests

The Sun wrote on January 8:

“Deadly radioactive plutonium is leaking into the Pacific Ocean from a tiny island where the US detonated dozens of Cold War nukes. During its clean-up operation on Enewetak Atoll, in the Marshall Islands, the American military built a giant concrete dome to house the toxic material left over from the nuclear tests. And now with rising sea levels, the storage facility is leaking into the Pacific Ocean, potentially spreading its deadly contents far and wide.

“It has now been claimed that the dome, which was built with a porous base of seashells and sand, was not sealed properly – which has further contributed to the radioactive leak… Over the course of 10 years, during the Cold War, 43 nuclear bombs were detonated, blasting craters and vaporising islands. Back in 2013, a report commissioned by the US Department of Energy confirmed the dome is leaking its highly toxic waste. Locals refer to it as ‘the poison’ and have already been complaining of birth defects and high cancer rates.

“One of the substances buried within the nuclear dump is plutonium — which has a half-life of 24,000 years – and is one of the most toxic and carcinogenic substances on the planet. Exposure can cause a number of health issues, including radiation sickness, genetic damage, cancer and death…

“Some of the largest nuclear bombs ever tested were detonated in the tiny tropical islands. In the ’70s, US media reports labelled the area the most decimated and toxic in the world. One of the bombs tested in the area was called the ‘Bravo Shot’ — 1000 times more powerful than those bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki…

“The 2013 US government report also warned that the increasing severity of storms in the region meant the dome was at risk of being blown apart…”

It is just terrible what man in his morbid and sick desire for war and destruction is capable of doing. But Christ will come to destroy those who destroy the earth.

Brexit: May Suffers Further Defeat in Parliament

Reuters wrote on January 8, 2019:

“British Prime Minister Theresa May’s government suffered a defeat in parliament on Tuesday when lawmakers who oppose leaving the European Union without an accord won a vote that created a new obstacle to a no-deal Brexit. The 303 to 296 defeat means that the government needs explicit parliamentary approval to leave the EU without a deal before it can use certain powers relating to taxation law.

“The defeat highlights May’s weak position as leader of a minority government, a divided party, and a critical parliament just days before she is due to hold a pivotal vote on whether to approve the Brexit deal she has negotiated with the EU…

“The government downplayed the significance of its defeat. ‘This amendment does not change the fact that the UK is leaving the EU on the 29 March, and it will not stop the government from collecting tax,’ a spokesman said…”

May Suffers Another Defeat

The Sun wrote on January 9:

“Theresa May has been defeated on Brexit for the second time in 24 hours today as rebels wrestled back power from the Government. Hopes that she can get next week’s deal passed by MPs are now fading fast after she was slapped down yet again by politicians demanding more of a say on our EU exit.

“The PM will now be forced to make a statement within three days if her withdrawal agreement gets thrown out by MPs on Tuesday as expected.”

Germany Warns Britain

Deutsche Welle wrote on January 8:

“German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said the EU would not accept a hard border between Ireland, an EU member state, and Northern Ireland, which is part of the United Kingdom. Maas pledged the EU’s full support for the Republic of Ireland

“The British parliament is set to vote on May’s deal on January 15. Many observers expect it to end in defeat for the prime minister, who was forced to postpone an earlier vote in December due to lack of support… Any extension of the deadline for Britain leaving the EU would require unanimous approval from the EU’s remaining 27 member states.”

None of this looks good for Great Britain.

Belgian Region of Flanders Bans Halal and Kosher Slaughter

Express wrote on January 8:

“Under the new law [in the Belgian region of Flanders] animals must be stunned before being slaughtered, which animal rights campaigners argue is more humane. However, traditional halal and kosher rituals involve cutting the animals throat without stunning the animal first. Halal and kosher meat will continue [to] be sold in shops but it must be sourced from elsewhere.

“The move – initiated by right-wing nationalist Ben Weyts – has prompted a furious outcry from religious groups, with claims it is motivated by Islamophobia and anti-Semitism.

“Muslim leader Saatci Bayram told The New York Times: ‘This ban is presented as a revelation by animal rights activists, but the debate on animal welfare in Islam has been going on for 1,500 years. Our way of ritual slaughtering is painless.’

“Yaakov David Schmahl, a senior rabbi in Antwerp, added: ‘It is impossible to know the true intentions of people. Unless people state clearly what they have in mind, but most anti-Semites don’t do that. It definitely brings to mind similar situations before the Second World War, when these laws were introduced in Germany.’”

JTA wrote on January 4:

“Antwerp’s Jewish community was still recovering from its Holocaust-era devastation when Wim van den Brande’s grandfather opened one of Europe’s largest kosher slaughterhouses. Since its establishment in 1966, the Kosher Poultry factory grew together with the local Jewish community, which numbered only a few thousand people after Nazis and their collaborators murdered most of the Jews in Flanders — the Belgian region whose capital is Antwerp.

“By the end of last year, van den Brande’s factory was processing 80,000 chickens a month — a testament to how the region’s Jewish population has more than quadrupled to 20,000 since 1945. But all that ended last month, when a law banning methods used in ritual slaughter went into effect, forcing van den Brande, who is not Jewish, to fire his 10 employees and close up shop, in the hope of moving his factory to Hungary. For van den Brande, 42, and hundreds of meat industry professionals, it means ‘an attack on traditions and on an entire industry,’ he told JTA.

“It has less immediate implications for Antwerp’s Jews — who can simply switch to importing customs-free kosher meat from elsewhere within the European Union trading bloc. Yet many of them view the law both as a declaration that they are not wanted in Belgium, and as the opening shot of further hostile action

“Schuldiner fears the law, which he considers a ban, is a ‘prelude to a ban on importing kosher meat,’ and a move heralding ‘new restrictions, be it on milah or other elements of Jewish life.’ Milah is the Hebrew word for circumcision of men

“In this context, the law passed in Belgium ‘is clearly only the beginning,’ said Ari Mandel, an Antwerp Jew who in 2011 opened Kosher4U, an online store that specializes in shipping kosher products to remote European Jewish communities, such as in Sweden and Norway. ‘We’re talking about a domino effect. Kosher slaughterhouses can move but moving appears to be a temporary solution, a stay of execution,’ he added…

“Ritual slaughter of animals is allowed in France, Germany, the United Kingdom [but with restrictions], Ukraine and Russia… Five European Union member states — Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Lithuania and Slovenia — have blanket bans on ritual slaughter. So too do three other non-EU countries in Western Europe: Norway, Switzerland and Iceland.

“In Belgium, it is currently illegal only in Flanders, or the Flemish Region, which is one of three states that make up the federal kingdom. Another region, Wallonia, will impose a ban in September. Austria and Estonia also enforce strict supervision of the custom that some Jews there say makes it nearly impossible…”

Anti-Semitism is clearly on the rise, and what we observe here in some European states (others will follow) is an obvious preview of the future when European armies will invade the Middle East and the state of Israel to suppress the animal sacrifices which will be offered at the rebuilt third temple.

CNA wrote on January 8:

“Yaakov David Schmahl, a rabbi of Antwerp, reflected on fears the Belgium rules conceal anti-religious bigotry under animal protection concerns… He also voiced concern about a new Belgian law regulating homeschooling, a common practice for his Jewish community, as another example of a European trend he said makes it more difficult for observant Jews to live according to their practices.”

Homeschooling is, for example, prohibited in Germany, which places an undue burden on many religious parents who are opposed to the German school system and its many questionable teachings, including courses on sex education and unbiblical religious activities.

Germany and France Sign Security Policy Agreement

The EUObserver wrote on January 9:

“German chancellor Angela Merkel and French president Emmanuel Macron will sign a bilateral cooperation and integration agreement on 22 January at a ceremony in Aachen town hall, the German government announced on Tuesday. The new Treaty of Aachen builds on the Elysee Treaty of 1963 on reconciliation between Germany and France and will further strengthen relations in areas such as economic policy, foreign and security policy.”

Aachen was the capital of Charlemagne from which he ruled, and where he is buried.

Needed—a European Army

Handelsblatt added on January 9:

“The common defense project is currently the hot topic. US President Donald Trump recently reconfirmed through his conduct that the times when we could rely completely on the US are over. There can be no doubt about it: There is an urgent need for action, and it is ultimately a question of building a ‘real European army,’ as Chancellor Angela Merkel would have it, or an ‘army of Europeans,’ per Defense Minister Ursula Von der Leyen — whatever the difference may be…

“In the discussion about joint armed forces, the German army has a critical role… In no other field than security and defense is more Europe more urgent and necessary. The majority of European citizens agrees…”

Violent Attacks on Germany’s AFP Party

The Sun wrote on January 8, 2019:

“Frank Magnitz, chairman of Germany’s AfD party, was left with a gaping wound in his head after he was reportedly knocked unconscious by three attackers on Monday… The party has described the assault as a ‘politically-motivated attempted assassination’… German Chancellor Angela Merkel has led condemnations of the assault with her spokesman saying on Twitter the ‘brutal attack’ was to be ‘condemned sharply’…

“An AfD office in Saxony was damaged by an explosive device left in a bin and three people were detained.

“… it was Merkel’s reaction to the refugee crisis that propelled the far-right party into the Bundestag lower house. It is expected to attract even more votes in May’s European elections.”

Deutsche Welle added on January 8:

“Monday’s attack on Bremen’s… AfD leader Frank Magnitz is not the first time the far-right populist party has been targeted in the northern German city. In the past, windows have been smashed and a car vandalized. Yet the brutal beating of Magnitz does mark a new level of violence in Bremen.

“The 66-year-old Magnitz, who remains hospitalized, was reportedly set upon by masked assailants, who struck the parliamentarian in the head with an object. When Magnitz went to the ground, the attackers apparently continued beating him. Passersby ultimately came to his aid. Bremen’s police and state security authorities suspect the attack was politically motivated

Leading politicians from all parties in Germany’s parliament, the Bundestag, condemned the attack on Magnitz… Alice Weidel, who leads the AfD’s parliamentary group together with Alexander Gauland, said… that ‘the hatred against the AfD and the media coverage against this democratically elected party is bearing fruit.’”

Political propaganda from all sides and hatred and fanaticism in all their regrettable forms are taking their toll. Terrible incidents like these remind us of the violence which was experienced in Germany after the First World War.

Pope Francis Warns Against Populism and Nationalism

Breitbart wrote on January 7:

“Pope Francis compared today’s emergence of populist and nationalist movements to the days of Nazi Germany in an address to a group of diplomats accredited to the Holy See Monday… During the period between the two world wars, he said, ‘populist and nationalistic propensities prevailed over the action of the League of Nations…”

His speech was directed, in part, at President Trump. This is remarkable, as the Catholic Church will support the coming European power in their launch of a military attack on the USA in the not-too-distant future.

German Cardinal Reinhard Marx a Lightning Rod in Francis’s Papacy

Crux Now wrote on January 5:

“President of the German Episcopal Conference and archbishop of Munich and Freising, Marx is also a member of the pope’s ‘C9’ advisory council. Almost from the moment Francis took office in 2013, he has been a consistent provocateur, taking a leading role in the Vatican’s financial reform as president of the Council for the Economy, pushing for a more progressive interpretation of Francis’s 2016 exhortation on the family…, advocating for intercommunion in mixed marriages when one spouse is Catholic and one is not, and also calling for greater openness to LGBT relationships.

“Most recently Marx stirred the waters on the issue of celibacy, which will be openly debated during the German bishops’ permanent council meeting in the spring on the grounds that it could have an impact on the Catholic Church’s clerical sexual abuse crisis… He said that 2019 will be a year of ‘unrest and opposition’ in the German Church… “From the beginning, Marx has been a key player in virtually every aspect of Francis’s papacy… Marx’s role as a major point of reference in the Francis papacy seems destined to endure.”

It will be interesting to see as to what faction in the Vatican will ultimately prevail.

 Acknowledgement and Disclaimer

These Current Events are compiled and commented on by Norbert Link. We gratefully acknowledge the many contributions of news articles from our readership. The publication of articles in this section is not to be viewed as an endorsement or approval as to contents or accuracy of the selected articles, but they are published for the purpose of pointing at worldwide developments in the light of biblical end-time prophecy and godly instruction. Our own comments are provided in italics.