A Forecast for 2008:
The Turbulence Aheadby Chuck Missler
As we enter the new year and survey the turbulent horizon ahead, global enigmas continue to challenge any competent analysis. Anyone who assumes that the years ahead will be smooth sailing is underinformed.
While most of us are probably underwhelmed by the current contenders competing for the highest office of the land, the ensuing election debates will consume most of the media attention through November.
(It seems bizarre that there are many who believe that there are candidates that should be in prison, not on the campaign circuit!)
Nevertheless, whoever ultimately enters the coveted Oval Office is likely to be overwhelmed by the emerging realities that will confront the new president.
Mushroom Clouds on the Horizon
The nuclear threats continue to intensify and multiply. Despite the politically motivated disinformation of the “National Intelligence Estimate,” most serious observers remain convinced that Iran is intrepidly pursuing its aggressive nuclear weapons objectives, and the intentions of its radical leadership have certainly been clearly declared.
There are many who anticipate that Israel may be planning a preemptive nuclear strike, but Iran has warned that it will launch 11,000 rockets at Israel and U.S. military bases in the Middle East if it is attacked.
Further, the threat of a clandestine EMP attack on the United States remains a top concern to the Department of Homeland Security. The implicit deadlines are a matter of months away, not years.
Meanwhile, “the most dangerous country on earth” (as described by Newsweek)-Pakistan-appears to be spiraling out of control. As the primary nuclear power among Islamic nations, many Taliban and al-Qaeda fighters are now fleeing from Afghanistan to take refuge in Pakistan, and this has raised further concerns that Pakistan’s nukes could fall into the hands of terrorists.
The Struggle for Jerusalem
Compelling evidence has also been uncovered that North Korea may be helping Syria develop nuclear weapons. Syria’s nuclear ambitions and its cooperation with North Korea will undoubtedly complicate the six-party talks over North Korea’s nuclear weapons program.
Despite some ostensible progress, intelligence officials warn that the secretive and often unpredictable regime has not yet ceased all of its proliferation activities.
Meanwhile, in Israel, the “Palestinian territories” have spiraled deeper into chaos: Hamas has driven Fatah from Gaza, and the Palestinian territories are now effectively divided-with Hamas in control of Gaza and Fatah in control of the “West Bank.”
The short-lived Palestinian unity government has crumbled and the two groups are now battling for power. To further cloud the prospects, the Bush Administration continues to actively aid the terrorists while effectively ignoring Israel’s sovereign interests. (It appears paradoxical that a president that can’t control his own borders is seeking to meddle with theirs!)
Many of us believe that it has been the traditional commitment of the United States to defend Israel’s right to exist that has resulted in a deferral of an overdue judgment. As our administration continues to challenge the Abrahamic Covenant by pressing for a partitioning of the Land, there are some that strongly suspect that it is our own future that is seriously at risk.
Tensions between Israel and its enemies have increased significantly in recent months, making Syria and Iran’s growing alliance with nuclear-capable nations like Russia and North Korea all the more concerning.
Russia has repeatedly expressed a desire to play a larger role in the Middle East, at the same time its diplomatic relationship with the EU and the U.S. has soured.
Russia has announced that it is withdrawing from a key treaty regulating conventional armed forces in Europe, and it has also threatened to pull out of its 1987 treaty with the United States banning intermediate range nuclear forces.
Over the summer Russia resumed bomber drills near North America, prompting the U.S. military to scramble its fighter jets on at least seven different occasions. The political friction building between Russian and the Western World has raised speculation that we could once again be plunged into a Cold War scenario.
These developments could be a sign that the famed battle prophesied in Ezekiel 38 and 39 might be emerging on our near horizon. It is during this battle that God will directly intercede to protect Israel from Magog and its allies. (And an enigmatic reference in Ezekiel 39:6 hints that a “third party”-the U.S.?-may suffer collateral damage.)
The Rise of Islam
Islam is one of the world’s fastest growing religions, and it is second in size only to Christianity. Virtually every country in the Western World has birth rates well below the replacement rate of 2.1 children per woman, while Muslims have high birth rates. Europe is projected to be Islamic by mid-century. Russia has also experienced difficulty integrating its growing Muslim population. Ethnic tensions in the former Soviet Union have begun to mirror those of its European neighbors. Russia’s Muslim population has increased by 40 percent since 1989, to about 25 million. By 2015, Muslims will make up a majority of Russia’s conscript army.
The Rise of a European Superstate
This year began with the admittance of two new member states: Romania and Bulgaria. On December 13th Europe’s leaders signed the historic EU reform treaty, also called the Treaty of Lisbon. If all goes as planned, the treaty will be ratified by member states next year and will enter into force on January 1, 2009.
The Treaty of Lisbon is essentially the same as the failed EU constitution, except this time around its fate won’t rest in the hands of the people. Also in December the EU expanded the border-free zone and announced plans to merge its overseas embassies.
The EU now encompasses more than 460 million people, stretching from the Arctic to the Mediterranean and east all the way to the Black Sea. Europe’s economy has grown steadily in recent years and can now boast a GDP larger than the United States. Former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan made headlines in September when he said that the euro could eventually take the place of the dollar as the world’s primary reserve currency. Earlier this year Europe eclipsed the U.S. in stock market value for the first time since the First World War.
The Rise of the Far East
Just as Henry Luce dubbed the 20th century as “the American Century,” many are recognizing that the 21st century will be “the Asian Century.” In just one generation, China has tripled their per capita income and lifted over 300 million people out of poverty.
China has an average annual GDP growth rate above 10 percent and its growth always seems to exceed analysts’ expectations. China has already surpassed the United States as the world’s second- largest exporter and is set to eclipse Germany as the world’s largest exporter in the coming months.
China’s foreign currency reserves have surged to an astounding 1.4 trillion dollars, setting a new record for the world’s largest currency reserves and sparking a debate over China’s economic policies. China’s currency reserves have been growing at a rate of nearly 30 million dollars per hour. Experts estimate that over 70 percent of China’s reserves are U.S. dollars, but China has threatened to liquidate those reserves as it sees fit.
North American Union
The hidden agendas moving toward a form of global governance continues to surface. One of the most disturbing breaches of the current Bush Administration is the covert pursuit of a North American Union, patterned after the European Union.
Several dozen working groups, headed by the top three cabinet officers of the U.S., Canada, and Mexico, have been empanelled as the “Security and Prosperity Partnership” (SPP) since March of 2005, to work out administrative details for the eventual merger.
One manifestation of this agenda is the pursuit of the NAFTA Super Highway, from Lázaro Cárdenas on the Pacific Coast of Mexico, through Laredo, Texas and an advanced “Smartport” at Kansas City, and on to Canada. Foreign investors are supporting its development “below the radar.” Hutchison Whampoa, the Chinese company that controls both ends of the Panama Canal and the Port of Long Beach, California, will control the container port at Lázaro Cárdenas.
What makes this most disturbing is that it is being done without the benefit of public discourse-in total disregard to the Constitution and rule of law!
Our Economic Predicament
Meanwhile, the economic plight facing the United States is widely being underestimated-even by the tense mudslinging among the political contenders. The national debt is growing at a rate of a million dollars a minute, the dollar continues its decline, consumer debt has skyrocketed, and we are experiencing a nationwide housing crisis in which about one out of every 100 mortgages are expected to end in foreclosure.
The official Financial Report of the U.S. Treasury indicates that, on the basis of Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP), since the liabilities exceed the assets, “arguments that the U.S. government is bankrupt have increasing merit.”
If the U.S. government continues to conduct business as usual over the next few years, a national debt that is already $8.5 trillion could reach $46 trillion or more, adjusted for inflation.
A hole that big could paralyze the U.S. economy; according to some projections, just the interest payments on a debt that large would be as much as all the taxes the government collects today. And every year that nothing is done about it, the problem grows by 2 to 3 trillion dollars (yes, that’s with a “t”).
It doesn’t take a genius to recognize that an economic upheaval is in the making. There are some that are suggesting that, ultimately, a new currency-for all North America-will replace the U.S. dollar, the Canadian dollar and the Mexican peso: the amero.
In fact, some cynics suspect that our current indebtedness is the result of a deliberate globalist strategy to help the North American Union achieve a key step in a larger goal toward global governance.
Our current economic predicament appears consistent with the Bible’s description of the end times. The black horseman of Revelation 6 calls our attention to, not just famine, but also to hyperinflation.
Your Action Plan?
Other than acquitting ourselves responsibly at the voting booths, you and I cannot impact significantly any of the strategic trends that are destined to buffet us in the coming months and years. It is clear that most of the presumptions that we have adopted from previous decades are going to drastically change and prove obsolete and ineffectual. What we can do, however, is prepare ourselves, as much as possible, as stewards for our families.
Let’s also realize that we at Monarchists: we look for-and serve-our Coming King! Our primary challenge is to discover precisely what He has called us to do, and roll up our sleeves and get to it!
The emerging clouds on our geopolitical and economic horizons should propel us to use every day-and every opportunity-to get on with the Lord’s business as our primary priority!
As you formulate your priorities for the coming year, have you included an objectively measurable program for your spiritual growth? All of us are a “work in progress.” Each of us needs to significantly “raise the bar” in our own walk with Him.
Will you commit to a program of serious study of God’s Word as part of a path toward spiritual growth? When 2009 rolls around, will you be able to look back and demonstrate personal growth spiritually?
Pray about it.
Weapons Proliferation - Weapons of Mass Destruction
Follow the growing availability of weapons of mass destruction, from backpack nuclear bombs, to biological and chemical weapons now available to any nation in the world. How does this increasing instability affect our national policy, and our Biblical worldview?
The Rise of Islam - The World's Fastest Growing Religion
The Muslim faith is becoming an increasingly volatile catalyst in today's international scene. This information will help you discover the motives behind the terrorist events that we have seen recently.
The Struggle for Jerusalem - Pursuit of Lasting Peace
The Middle East "Piece Process" threatens to disrupt global security. What does this ongoing struggle for Israeli sovereignty mean for the U.S., as well as the study of Biblical "End-Times?"
The Magog Invasion - Russia's Strategy
Once thought to be a growing capitalist ally, Russia is returning to its Soviet roots. With a renovated nuclear force, a renewed sense of nationalism, and fresh alliances with other communist regimes, Russia is once again at the forefront of international politics.
The Decline of the U.S. - Economic and Social Realities
The failure of our public schools, a decimated military, a corrupt Executive branch, and an ever-increasing involvement in the United Nations globalist agenda do not bode well for America. Can we stop this downward trend before it's too late?
The Rise of the Far East - China's Emergent Superpower Status, India's meteoric rise on the global scene.
Once content with isolationism, China is now asserting itself as a global, fully-communist nuclear superpower. With its eye on reclaiming Taiwan, and strategic alliances with Russia and North Korea, China can no longer be ignored.
India, an overlooked giant rising in the east, has the second fastest-growing major economy in the world over the past 15 years and in recent years trails only China and the United States in its contribution to global gross domestic product (GPD) growth.
The Rise of a European Superstate - The European Union
Once dismissed as conspiracy nonsense, a one-world government is not so far-fetched with the establishment of the EU. Is this the revived Roman Empire? Is a common European currency and government significant in "End-Times" prophecy?
Biotech & Global Pestilence - Viruses Running Amok
Drug-resistant strains of diseases once thought to be eradicated, such as Tuberculosis and Legionnaires Disease are threatening our modern society. AIDS is no longer our worst problem. Are these outbreaks possibly precursors to the plague Judgements of Revelation?
Global Government - Movement Toward a One World Government
Once veiled in secrecy, the movement toward a unified, socialist government dissolving national boundaries has hit the mainstream. Even American political leaders are embracing this movement. Are we playing a deadly game, setting the stage for the Coming World Leader of the Tribulation?
Global Religion - Movement Toward a One World Religion
Traditional Christianity is the last stumbling block in the path of global tyranny. See how the new "Tolerance" is helping to erode our personal freedoms, and setting the stage for further persecution of God's Faithful.