(The Arafat Factor)
Back in April this year I was first alerted to the existence of John McTernan’s book, “God’s Final Judgment on America.” The news came from one of Bill Koenig’s News Bulletins, and our fellowship took note of the contents, and discussed it this way and that. The book lists many “coincidences” that have occurred in recent American history, beginning in October 1991, coincidences between major disasters and political drives to oust Israel from the occupied territories.
Now, before going any further, let me say that this subject is one that raises emotional resentment, anger, and inflamed hostility amongst people, even in the Christian quarter. There are those who stand by Israel adamantly, saying that it is still “God’s Chosen People”, and that Israelis are “the apple of God’s eye”, statements found in the Old Testaments of our Bibles. Others declare vociferously that all this has changed, and that believers in the Lord Jesus, wherever they are, and from whatever nations they come from, are now God’s people, and that God has done with Israel as a separated nation. I spoke about this in the last Wellspring, showing that both sides have some truth, but both sides fail to recognise certain factors. This article therefore follows on, with further food for thought.
Strange coincidences have been noted throughout history, and since we are talking about America, let me mention what the books say about the assassinations of Presidents Abraham Lincoln and John F. Kennedy. Both were shot in the back of the head, each on a Friday, whilst their wives were with them. Lincoln was shot in Ford’s Theatre, Kennedy was shot in a Lincoln Automobile, made by Ford’s. Booth committed his crime in a theatre, and ran to a barn. Oswald pulled the trigger on Kennedy from the window of a warehouse, and ran to a theatre. Lincoln was first elected to Congress in 1846, Kennedy exactly 100 years later. Lincoln was elected President November 6th 1860, Kennedy November 8th 1960. After their deaths both were succeeded by southerners named Johnson. Andrew Johnson was born in 1808, Lyndon Johnson in 1908. Their killers, likewise, showed coincidences.Booth was born in 1838, Oswald in 1939. Both were southerners, and both were shot before coming to trial.
Amazing! Yes, but what can be learned from these coincidences? As far as I know, nothing. It’s just one of those things that happens, and is noted by observant historians. I may be wrong, perhaps there is some significance, but to date nothing presents itself to my mind of any importance.
I am about to list no less than ELEVEN COINCIDENCES that have occurred over the last ten years, and which seem to suggest something far more important than the coincidental-quirks of the presidents mentioned above. However, I shall not make any judgment on them, but leave my readers to ponder the significance, and determine what course of personal action should be taken. In due course, it would be good to hear from correspondents here and there what they make of the evidence.
- October 31st. President George H. Bush opened the Madrid Conference with an initiative for a Middle East peace plan involving the land in the occupied territories. On the same day an extremely rare storm formed off the coast of Nova Scotia, and was later called “The Perfect Storm”, a type that occurs about once every century. Record-setting 100 foot waves formed at sea, and pounded the New England coast, even causing heavy damage to President Bush’s home in Kennebunkport, Maine.
- August 23rd. The Madrid Conference moved to Washington D.C. and the peace talks resumed, lasting four days. On that same day, Hurricane Andrew, the worst natural disaster ever to hit America, produced $19.6 billion of damage, and left 180,000 people homeless in Florida.
- January 16th. President Clinton met with Syria’s President Hafez el-Assad in Geneva. They talked about a peace agreement with Israel that included giving up the Golan Heights. Less than 24 hours later, a powerful 6.9 Richter earthquake rocked Southern California. This quake, centred in Northridge, was the second most destructive natural disaster to hit the States, after Hurricane Andrew.
- March 3rd. The combination of P.A.Chairman Yasser Arafat touring America, and Clinton rebuking Israel for not giving away land for peace. On the day Arafat arrived in America, powerful tornados devastated huge sections of the nation, ripping across Texas, Arkansas, Mississippi, Kentucky, and Tennessee. His American tour also coincided with the storms in the Dakotas, which resulted in the worst flooding of the century. When Arafat left America, all the storms stopped.
- January 21st. Israel’s Binyamin Netanyahu met with President Clinton at the White House, and was coldly received. Clinton and Secretary of State Madeleine Albright refused to have lunch with him. Shortly afterwards that day, the Monica Lewinsky scandal broke into the mass media.
- September 27-28th. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright worked on the final details of an agreement in which Israel would be required to give up 13% of the West Bank. The same day Hurricane Georges slammed into the Gulf Coast with 110 mph winds and gusts up to 175 mph. On hitting the coast, the hurricane stalled. The next day Clinton met with Netanyahu and Arafat at the White House to finalise the land deal. Arafat addressed the United Nations about declaring an Independent Palestinian State on May 1999. Hurricane George pounded the Gulf Coast causing $1 billion damage. At the exact time Arafat departed from America, the storm began to dissipate.
- October 15-22nd. On October 15th Arafat and Netanyahu met at Wye River Plantation in Maryland, to continue talks which ended previously on September 28th. This new round of talks were extended and continued until October 23rd. On October 17th awesome rains and tornados hit southern Texas. The San Antonio area was deluged with 20 inches of rain in one day. These rains continued until October 22nd before subsiding. 25% of Texas was ravaged, leaving over $1 billion in damage. On October 21st Clinton declared this section of Texas a major disaster area.
- May 3rd. This was the day that Arafat was due to declare an Independent Palestinian State.with Jerusalem as its capital. The declaration was postponed by request of President Clinton, who nevertheless wrote to him encouraging him for his “aspirations for his own land”, saying that the Palestinians have a right to “determine their own future on their own land,” and that they deserve to “live free, today, tomorrow, and forever.” That same day, starting at 4.47 p.m. CDT, the most powerful tornado storm ever to hit the United States swept across Oklahoma and Kansas. Winds of 316 mph were recorded, the fastest wind speed ever recorded.
- June 8-9th. President George W. Bush sent CIA Director George Tenet to Israel to try to broker a cease-fire between the Israelis and Palestinians, and to implement the Mitchell Report. Tenet wanted Israel to stop building in the settlement areas. He arrived in Israel on Wednesday June 6th, and on Friday June 8th hosted talks between Palestinian and Israeli officials in Ramallah, while Secretary of State William Burns met Yasser Arafat in the West Bank. At this precise time, Tropical Storm Allison re-formed and dumped one of the heaviest rainfalls in the history of the United States, in eastern Texas. In a 24-hour period, 28 inches of rain fell on the Houston area, and over 36 inches during the five days of the storm. 20,000 homes and businesses were destroyed or damaged, with possibly 50,000 automobiles and trucks. 28 counties in Texas were declared a disaster area, along with 14 parishes in Louisiana. The resulting damage was close to $2 billion. This was the third time since the Madrid Peace Process that a sitting President’s State had been the location of a powerful and damaging storm, occurring at the exact time the President was involved with Israel and the land problem.
- September 11th. Just two days before President George W. Bush intended to share with the Saudi Ambassador about the Mitchell plan, and the forming of a Palestinian State, which would be presented to the United Nations on September 23rd by Secretary of State Colin Powell, terrorists hijacked planes that demolished the World Trade Centre in New York, and damaged part of the Pentagon in Washington. Estimated damage is in the region $30 -£50 billion. The talks were postponed.
- November 10-12th. On November 10th President Bush addressed the United Nations assembly, declaring his plan for a Palestinian State. “The American Government stands by its commitment to a just peace in the Middle East. We are working toward a day when two states, Israel and Palestine, live peacefully together within secure and recognised borders as called for by the Security Council resolutions. We will do all in our power to bring both parties back into negotiations. But peace will only come when all have sworn off, forever, incitement, violence and terror.” On November 11th Yasser Arafat addressed the United Nations. “State terror is being practised against the Palestinian people. Facing this aggression, escalation and the bloody war of state terror being waged by the Israeli Government against our people, land, and holy places, the tank incursions into our cities,and the massacres committed in various locations in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, we call upon the international community to exert every possible effort to protect our people from the occupation, terror, and ethnic cleansing practised by Israel. . . . . We call upon the nations to exert every possible effort to enable the Palestinian people to live within their independent state on their national soil with holy Jerusalem as its capital, and to ensure that Israel makes a full and comprehensive withdrawal from all Palestinian and Arab territories including holy Jerusalem, to the June 4th 1967 boundaries, to end settlement activities, and evacuate settlers from our land and guarantee the right of the Palestinian refugees to return in accordance with resolution 194, which specified this right and called for compensating those not wishing to return. We welcome the positive positions declared by President George Bush and other leaders, which have called for the establishment of the Palestinian State.”
The following day, November 12th , at just after 9 a.m., one of the twin engines of a United States Air Bus mysteriously “fell off”, causing a state of imbalance that could not be rectified. Just three minutes after take off, the plane crashed into a suburb of New York, killing all 260 on board. The flight was bound for the Dominican Republic. Black box recorders gave no clue as to the cause of this disaster. Terrorism has not been ruled out, but has been stated to be extremely unlikely. At the time of this writing, no definitive solution has been found for the tragedy.
All these events form part of the history of the Unites States. In Israel, when Yitzhak Rabin was on the point of giving back the Golan Heights to Syria, and large parts of the West Bank to the Palestinians, he was assassinated. Ehud Barak agreed to give all but a few metres of the Golan Heights back to Syria, but they refused the deal because they wanted it all. Barak then offered the Palestinians about 95% of all the land they wanted, for a Palestinian State, but Arafat refused because he was not offered sovereignty over the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. Barak then lost his position in the Knesset, and Ariel Sharon took over, rising from a position of least acceptance to a resounding victory. He is the only Prime Minister of Israel to be sworn in with his hand placed on the Hebrew Bible. He is a tough-liner, refusing to give up the sovereignty of the Temple Mount, and stating that there will be no splitting of Jerusalem with the Palestinians. There appears to be no way of resolving the problem in the Middle East, humanly speaking.
What shall we make of the eleven coincidences? Is God showing the American Government that the land wanted by the Palestinians is sovereign to the Jews? And to Himself? And is the prophecy about Jerusalem being “a burdensome stone to all people” still operative? If so, “woe to those who burden themselves against it” might account for the recent round of tragedies, which have cost America enormous sums in damages, as well as loss of life. Is it right to make such conclusions, or are we walking into a minefield? What shall we say to these things? Please let us know.