Current Events

Real Threats for Planet Earth

On August 9, 2004, BBC News published a frightening article, titled, “Nature ‘mankind’s gravest threat’.” The article continued to point out that “Giant tsunamis, super volcanoes and earthquakes could pose a greater threat than terrorism, scientists claim.” The article mentioned the following scientific predictions which might, or might not, happen in our lifetime: “Giant walls of water that can devastate coastal cities, volcanoes so big that their ash crushes houses 1,500 km (932 miles) away, giant earthquakes and asteroid impacts.

The article explained: “The last ‘super volcanic eruption’ was back in April 1815, when Tambora in Indonesia exploded violently, in what was the largest eruption in historic time. The eruption column reached a height of about 44 km (28 miles), ash fell as far as 1,300 km (800 miles) from the volcano – and an estimated 92,000 people were killed. Rare though they are, events this catastrophic need to be taken very seriously. The potential threat that scientists currently have their eye on is an insecure rock – the size of the Isle of Man – in the Canary Island of La Palma. The rock is in the process of slipping into the sea and Professor McGuire fears that when it finally collapses, the resulting tsunami will cause massive destruction along the coasts of countries like the USA, UK and many on the African continent, within a matter of hours… The triggering factor could be the eruption of the volcano on La Palma, called Cumbre Vieja, which could feasibly blow ‘anytime,’ according to Professor McGuire.”

The article continued: “The greatest danger to humanity comes from asteroids, but work funded largely by the US government is swiftly tackling this threat… According to Benny Peiser, of Liverpool John Moores University, UK, the threat of cosmic mega disasters will be essentially ‘abolished within 30 years.'”

Of course, the question is, Do we have another 30 years — even if this time frame were remotely accurate?

In a related article, published by the European Space agency on July 21, it was stated: “Once dismissed as a nautical myth, freakish ocean waves that rise as tall as ten-storey apartment blocks have been accepted as a leading cause of large ship sinkings. Results from ESA’s ERS satellites helped establish the widespread existence of these ‘rogue’ waves and are now being used to study their origins. Severe weather has sunk more than 200 supertankers and container ships exceeding 200 metres in length during the last two decades. Rogue waves are believed to be the major cause in many such cases.”

Reuters published an article by the end of July, reporting about the fear of scientists that an “Alaska volcano that last erupted 12 years ago, raining ash on the state’s largest city, is now rumbling with earthquakes that may be a precursor to another eruption.”

The article continued: “In 1992, Mount Spurr’s eruption sent an ash plume up 65,000 feet, disrupting air traffic….Two other Alaska volcanoes are classified as subjects of elevated concern. Mount Veniaminof, a 7,073-foot volcano on the Alaska Peninsula and about 510 miles southwest of Anchorage, has been emitting small amounts of steam and ash since April. Shishaldin Volcano, a 9,372-foot peak in the eastern Aleutian Islands, has also been emitting ash. Alaska has about 60 volcanoes that have been active in the past.”

The Bible predicts gigantic volcanic eruptions and cosmic disturbances in the not-to-distant future. For a full analysis of this little-understood REAL THREAT to humanity, please read our free booklet, “Evolution — a Fairy Tale for Adults.”

Biblical Locust Plagues on the Rise

On August 6, 2004, Reuters reported about a tremendous locust plague in West Africa. The article was titled, “West Africans Urged to Fight Locusts.” It was pointed out: “Desperate West African farmers whose crops are being devoured by tens of millions of locusts have been urged to burn, drown and stamp on the insects that can decimate whole fields in minutes. The region’s worst locust crisis for 15 years has already seen Mauritania — twice the size of France — engulfed by the plague and neighbouring Mali said on Friday the swarms had spread across most of its vast arid territory… Desert locust swarms contain up to 80 million insects per square km and can travel more than 130 km (80 miles) a day. They can devastate entire crop fields in minutes, with adult locusts munching their own weight, about two grams, of food a day. The swarms are moving across the Sahara desert towards countries including Senegal, Niger, Chad and Gambia, many of whose inhabitants are subsistence farmers and whose governments lack the resources to fight the airborne invasion.”

The article continued: “The plague has also now spread to Senegal, according to a team of experts sent by France’s agronomical research centre CIRAD. President Abdoulaye Wade has cancelled his holiday and urged world leaders to declare war on the insects… Residents in Mauritania’s capital Nouakchott compared the latest plague — which ate their main football pitch as well as the president’s gardens — with the locust invasion of 1987-89. That plague was the worst in 30 years, sparking fears of famine and taking $300 million and 28 states to contain.”

When reading such accounts, one is reminded of the frightening prophecies for our time, as written down thousands of years ago in the book of Joel. Beginning in verse 2 of chapter one, the prophet predicted: “Hear this, you elders, And give ear, all you inhabitants of the land! Has anything like this happened in your days, Or even in the days of your fathers?” The prophet then described unprecedented locust plagues still to occur. There have always been locust plagues, of course, but, apparently, not with the same magnitude and dire consequences. We read in verses 4-7: “What the chewing locust left, the swarming locust has eaten; what the swarming locust left, the crawling locust has eaten; and what the crawling locust left, the consuming locust has eaten… For a nation [of locusts] has come up against My land, Strong, and without number; his teeth are the teeth of a lion, And he has the fangs of a fierce lion. He has laid waste My vine, And ruined My fig tree; He has stripped it bare and thrown it away; Its branches are made white.”

In addition, John, a prophet and apostle of Jesus Christ, predicted terrible and unprecedented wars to break out on this earth, in the near future, comparing helicopters and airplanes with locusts. We read in Revelation 9:3-10: “Then out of the smoke locusts came upon the earth. And to them was given power, as scorpions of the earth have power… The shape of the locusts was like horses prepared for battle. On their heads were crowns of something like gold, and their faces were like the faces of men… and the sound of their wings was like the sound of chariots with many horses running into battle. They had tails like scorpions, and there were stings in their tails.”

Real and figurative locusts will bring devastation over the entire earth in the not-too-distant future. God warned us of these events, so that we can spiritually prepare for them.

Nuclear Threat from Korea

On August 3, 2004, Reuters reported: “North Korea is deploying new land- and sea-based ballistic missiles that can carry nuclear warheads and may have sufficient range to hit the United States… Apart from targeting the United States, South Korea or Japan, cash-strapped North Korea might seek to sell the technology to countries that have bought its missiles in the past, with Iran a prime candidate… North Korea pulled out of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty in January 2003 and is locked in long-running crisis talks with the United States, China, Russia, Japan and South Korea over terms for scrapping its atomic weapons program. The extent of that program remains unclear, although North Korea’s deputy foreign minister was quoted as telling a senior U.S. official last year that Pyongyang possessed nuclear weapons… The new land-based system had an estimated range of 2,500 to 4,000 km (1,560 to 2,500 miles), and the sea-based system, launchable from a submarine or a ship, had a range of at least 2,500 km.”

The article continued, quoting an expert, as follows: “‘If you can get a missile aboard a warship, in particular aboard a submarine…you can move your submarine to strike at targets such as Hawaii or the United States, just as examples. Whereas it would be much more difficult to actually develop a ground-launched missile to achieve that sort of a range.’… Until now only the United States, Russia, Britain, France and China have been known to possess submarine-launched nuclear weapons, although there has been speculation that Israel has a similar capability.”

Terrible Consequences of War

Der Stern Online published a shocking article, describing the terrible psychological consequences for soldiers returning from war. The article was published on July 15, and was titled, “The Trauma of War.” Doctors and scientists examined German soldiers returning from Kosovo and Afghanistan, and reported their frightening and disturbing findings: “Some say that they beat their children, when helping them with their school work — something that they had never done before… In other cases, they show no more emotions, neither joy nor sadness… Many try desperately to forget the past. They withdraw, drink or take drugs. Some become depressive and avoid their friends… In extreme cases, returning soldiers go berserk and kill others.” The article also pointed out that traumatic developments, following experiences in war, can be proven bio-chemically in the brain.”

Greece a Future European leader?

As euobserver reported on August 9, “Greece wants to be among the avant garde in the newly enlarged EU, the Greek prime minister has said. In an interview with the Le Monde, Costas Caramanlis said ‘we want to be among the avant-garde of the European Union through reinforced co-operation.’ He added: ‘Although I am in favour of enlargement, I cannot imagine that in a large Europe, everyone will advance at the same speed. The countries that believe in a strong Europe have to form an avant-garde.'” The article continued:

“Speaking about Turkey’s eventual membership of the EU, Mr Caramanlis said the Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s government had made a ‘great effort’ to reform. He said that a ‘Europeanised Turkey’ is in the interests of Turks themselves, of countries neighbouring Turkey and the EU.”

Bible prophecy reveals that Greece will play a role in a powerful future Europe. Whether Turkey will become a full-fledged member of Europe appears doubtful, however.

European Passports and the USA

Euobserver reported on August 11 that “a year’s extra time has been granted to all EU member states with visa waiver agreements with the US to start issuing passports with biometric measures such as fingerprints.This year’s deadline has been extended to 26 October 2005 after it became apparent that so many countries were not going to be able to have the new passports ready on time.

“The issuing of biometric passports is part of a US law designed to tighten up border security after the 11 September (2001) terrorist attacks. However, one requirement is still in place for 26 October this year. By that time, ‘all passports used for travel in the Visa Waiver Programme must be machine-readable,’ says a State Department press release. If visitors – including those from countries whose citizens are not normally obliged to have a visa to get into the US – do not have machine-readable passports then they will have to obtain a visa.

“EU member states that have visa waiver agreements are 14 of the ‘old’ member states (Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, Sweden, Spain and the UK) and one new member state, Slovenia.

The article continued to report about frictions among European nations, regarding this issue of US passports:

“Greece and the nine other new member states do not have visa waiver agreements with the US. For the new member states, this has been a source of friction recently where some of them, particularly Poland and the Czech Republic, had agitated about invoking a law requiring solidarity from other member states on the issue. This so-called solidarity clause, which is part of the Schengen (open borders) legislation, would mean that all EU member states would be required to act uniformly on the issue.

“The European Commission said earlier this year that EU investigations into whether the new member states are fit to join the open borders area would garner useful information for the US authorities. An official at the time said that the Brussels executive would rather negotiate to see whether all new member states as a bloc could join the visa waiver in 2006 or 2007 – the years they are expected to join Schengen.

“Other countries that have a visa waiver agreement with the US and are affected by the new deadline are Andorra, Australia, Brunei, Iceland, Japan, Liechtenstein, Monaco, New Zealand, Norway, San Marino, Singapore and Switzerland.”

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