Is the World’s Most Powerful Military Poised to Assist Israel in an Attack on Iran – Albeit in Stealth?
In this series of articles, I have attempted to identify the most important, indeed almost undeniable reasons why America IS a player in the last days before the return of Christ to establish His Kingdom on earth. The last article dealt with the unlikely scenario that any financial power could overcome the economic juggernaut that is America within, say, the next three decades. Despite the economic difficulties our nation faces ($16 trillion in debt, unemployment and underemployment perhaps approaching 20%, the progressive demise of the middle-class, and a do-nothing feckless congress unable even to pass a budget in three years); I have argued it ultimately takes more than an economic crisis to completely upset America’s fiscal applecart. According to the Bible, it will take war on our soil to end our financial dominance (“And [they] cried when they saw the smoke of her burning, saying, “What [city is] like unto this great city!” “And a mighty angel took up a stone like a great millstone, and cast [it] into the sea, saying, ‘Thus with violence shall that great city Babylon be thrown down, and shall be found no more at all.’” Revelation 18:18, 21). In this segment, I focus on the power of the American military and its unassailable position for the foreseeable future. This is the fifth of ten most significant reasons why America can be equated with the Bible’s end-times Babylon.
5. America’s military dominates the world – we are the only remaining superpower. It would take 50 years for another military power to overtake our global capability.
For who would dare make war against America on the battlefield? [i] It only took the U.S. military a couple of weeks (along a few engaged nations in a ‘coalition of the willing’) to take apart the world’s fifth largest military when we invaded Iraq in 2003. Moreover, as daunting of our economic hegemony is, our military power stands even more supreme. America’s military prowess reigns unequaled. We spend six times what China spends on defense. We have 11 carrier groups to 1 for Russia and 1 for China.[ii] We have 75 submarines compared to 48 for Russia, China at 58 (and surprisingly, North Korea at 53). Our sophistication in nuclear weapons remains capable of destroying our enemies before they could unleash a counter-attack. However, as impressive as these capabilities are, the real advantage is dispersion. We have logistical advantages in every way over our closest rivals because of our global presence.
Few citizens of our great country realize that we maintain over 865 bases (according to the Pentagon[iii]) and this is before the count is updated with bases in Iraq and Afghanistan. Including those bases, counting both large and small, the U.S. possesses over 1,000 military bases at a cost exceeding $102 billion annually.[iv] Remarkably, we continue to maintain 227 bases in Germany consisting of 6,000 plus buildings amounting to over one million square feet.[v] This footprint may have made sense during the Cold War. But does it still seem like a good thing to do when our country is choking on enormous debt?
Clearly, something else must be going on here – much more than the U.S. looking out for American-only interests. There must be larger reasons for serving as the global military power. And of course, there is. There are profits to be made, there are stock targets to be hit, and there are the lifestyles of the rich and famous to be maintained – not just for America, but for England, France, Germany, our other European allies, and Japan. To achieve corporate economic goals, military power is essential. In 1991, after the fall of the Soviet Union, Dick Cheney, then head of the Defense Department, requested Paul Wolfowitz develop a strategic plan for U.S. world domination as the sole remaining super power.[vi] Although implemented partially by Bill Clinton’s regime, upon his election George W. Bush along with V.P. Cheney drew upon the Wolfowitz plan placing neo-cons Donald Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz at the Department of Defense fully implementing the kindler, gentler strategy for world domination. No doubt this included a larger force strategically positioned in the middle of the Middle East.
In essence, the big brush strokes to the plan were plain: American influence must be continued – ad infinitum – by the simple tactic of quartering our soldiers (almost 1.5M total persons in all branches of service) in every key region in the world. Despite infractions precipitated by the presence of our service personnel in the respective venues where they are stationed, local economies become addicted to our servicemen and women. Municipalities, states, and even foreign countries protest when any threat arises to eliminate our military bases. Establishing permanent bases isn’t the stated strategy. Until our military becomes accepted and part of the ‘way of life’ for the local economy where it resides, our presence is ‘provisional’ – not set in concrete.
According to our government, we attacked Iraq to ensure weapons of mass destruction weren’t used by Saddam’s obviously heinous regime. According to Vice-President Dick Cheney, we would be greeted as liberators (so he told the late Tim Russert on Meet the Press on March 16, 2003, 13 days before we invaded Iraq,). Likewise, then Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld assured us that our military bases would never be permanent, because we wouldn’t be occupiers. But what does history actually teach us about the contrast between our official policy and the reality of what we do? While 9/11 was a blatant inducement to remove our military from Saudi Arabia (remember, it was the stated reason Osama bin Laden promised to attack America and so hated his own Saudi government for allowing us to be there), we found it opportune to solidify and expand our military bases just across the border in Iraq after winning the war there.
Journalist Tom Engelhardt wrote this concise analysis in 2006, “There are at least four such “super-bases” in Iraq, little American islands of eternal order in an anarchic sea. Whatever top officials and military commanders say – and they always deny seeking ‘permanent bases’ – facts on the ground speak with another voice.” He continues:
Unfortunately, there’s a problem in grasping the import of any of this, since American reporters apparently adhere to a simple rule: The words “permanent,” “bases” and “Iraq” should never be placed in the same news report. A LexisNexis search of three months of press coverage produced examples of those three words in British reports, but US examples occurred only when 80 percent of polled Iraqis (obviously unhinged by their difficult lives) agreed that the United States might want to remain permanently in their country, or when “no” or “not” was added to the mix via any official American denial – as when Brig. Gen. Mark Kimmitt said recently: “It is not only our plan but our policy that we do not intend to have any permanent bases in Iraq.” (In other words, in the media such bases, imposing as they are, generally exist only in the negative.) [vii]
Besides, should we change our mind about this policy (which we did) isn’t that our right as a conquering force provoked by the attacks of 9/11? Whether it was accurate or not, we decided that Saddam was partially responsible for the 9/11 attacks (not true) and that he had weapons of mass destruction (possibly true) and that he would use them against Israel (highly unlikely given our stated policy to nuke anyone that would so attack us or Israel for using WMD).
Likewise, in a similar use of misinformation, should we denounce an attack by Israel on Iran all the while clandestinely covering Israel’s flank, isn’t this what the political situation demands? After all, most Americans support the nation of Israel and its quest to live peaceably in its homeland. Therefore, shouldn’t we support Israel even if we aren’t entirely honest about how and when we do so? Furthermore, if the government of Iran is overthrown during this process, shouldn’t we station troops there too – just like Iraq – to make sure we can keep the peace throughout the region? Since American military power has become a permanent fixture everywhere else, why should the Middle East be any different? In a militarist sense of “bearing the white man’s burden” (Rudyard Kipling wrote this seven-stanza poem in 1899), who else wants to take up this responsibility?
Consider for a moment how long it might take another power to commit a $100 billion annual budget to post almost one and a half million troops around the world in almost 1,000 different places. This is surely no easy feat. For those who believe that Christ is soon set to return and who believe He will come forth to conquer within the next decade or two, does it seem probable that another World Empire could come about during this time and replace the preeminent role America plays? Doug Krieger, an engaging author to which I am indebted for a bit of the inspiration leading to this post, points out that little has been done to increase the capacity for Europe to handle its own military burden.[viii] The context for his point is consistent with my arguments elsewhere[ix]: evangelical writers who believe in the ‘premillennial return of Jesus Christ’ presume that America declines in its global power (Lindsey, LaHaye, Missler, Peters, and Evans et al) giving way to Europe, since they assume ‘the revived Roman Empire’ will become the seat of power for the Antichrist. In particular Krieger cites Herbert Peters who supposes that one military corps especially created for quick response, the Eurocorps, will form the basis for what is destined to become the replacement for America’s military power world-wide. And yet, Peter’s argument lacks much hard data to support it. In 1988 Eurocorps was formed with a force of 40,000 persons. By 1998, it had been expanded to “a force which consists of up to 60,000 soldiers drawn from the armies of Belgium, France, Germany, Luxembourg and Spain. It is independent of any other military command, although it can be placed under the command of international organizations.”[x] So is Europe really going to field an army that causes its enemies to shudder at the thought of being attacked by it? Only months ago, European military demonstrated a spectacular lack of capability when lending support to Libyan rebels. America had to ‘lead from behind’ to facilitate the revolution there – temporarily at least – protecting Europe’s economic interests.
Evangelical authors who believe in the demise of America ‘to make room for Antichrist in Europe’ are unwittingly assisting in the Evil One’s arrival. They are masking what is really happening in the world. Their eschatological position results from a mistaken interpretive heuristic owing to the fact that nowhere in the Bible is America mentioned by name. Arguments from silence are a double-edged sword after all. The name ‘antichrist’ is never used in the Book of the Revelation and yet he is a central character.
As I’ve argued in previous articles and books,[xi] the view that America is absent from prophecy is ignoring the obvious attributes of ‘the Daughter of Babylon’ and ‘Mystery Babylon’ as disclosed in the Scriptures and thoughtfully connected to America’s current status in world affairs. Moreover, the connection is rather obvious once the patriotic blinders are removed. As unpopular as this argument is amongst the evangelical community, America stands as the primary suspect to be the base of operations for the world’s future führer. This does not mean that other nations play no part. The theme of ‘the kings of the earth’ is laced throughout the Bible and appears consistently in Revelation. The Beast’s seven heads (continents?) and the ten horns (nations, regions, kingdoms?) are images central to the apocalypse expressing the global nature of ‘gentile world power’ (the revealing of the Beast in Revelation 13 points out the amalgamation of all former gentile empires into this ultimate power that reigns over all peoples and tongues).
But if we look at the current world crisis in the Middle East today we see how the actions of the United States support a misguided strategy for ‘global leadership’ setting up the United States to be the catalyst for the coming of Antichrist. Consider what is happening right now in the Israeli-Iranian confrontation.
A contemporary blog post (September 16, 2012) from evangelical author Joel Rosenberg recounts that 25 warships including three American carrier groups are now in the Persian Gulf, to ensure the strait of Hormuz remains open even if war breaks out between Israel and Iran. Of course, the threat to close the Strait continues to be Iran’s ace in the hole, hoping to forestall military action by the West in response to U.S./European/Israeli concern that the goal of Iran’s nuclear program is to build atomic weapons of war and not peaceable power plants.
A review of various articles easily obtainable by searching for “Israel/Iran ready for war” demonstrates that both countries have assumed since the beginning of August that war is virtually inevitable. For example, one report filed on August 15, 2012, “JERUSALEM (AFP) – Israel is prepared for a 30-day war on multiple fronts should it decide to strike Iran, and is “ready as never before” for such a clash, the outgoing home front defence minister said Wednesday.”[xii] The number of articles on the subject is rife – except in the mainline American media. (That point is another one I could pontificate upon, but I will avoid the temptation to be so distracted).
Personally, I believe a preemptive strike by Israel will happen within the next two to three weeks and will likely appear to be unilateral – without obvious support from the United States. If I am reading the tea leaves correctly, while the United States may publicly act surprised and denounce the strike, the U.S. and nations of western Europe will support Israel ‘off the record’ and stand by to send in resources only if Israel’s actions fail to achieve the desired results. Despite his silence on this topic, the mobilization and presence of our warships could hardly happen without the awareness and direct consent of our president. Likewise, the mainline media (which includes Fox News) is inclined not to worry the American public about yet another war in that region. The only Middle East news concerns attacks on our embassies. Besides, TV networks would rather we focus on the shows premiering in their new fall line-up.
This probable military action is ‘semi-covert’ meaning that we have almost assuredly coordinated plans with Israel and several western European nations, including England and Germany. Some first-hand testimony to supplement my argument: in June I spoke with a consultant to the Government at a business meeting in Portland, Oregon (clearly unrelated to this topic) who spoke of the fact that the destructive Stuxnet virus[xiii], purportedly placed into Iran’s nuclear facilities (via a thumb drive installed by a Russian contractor acting on behalf of Western interests), was in fact a move taken not just by Israel, but by Germany and the United States working together with Jewish state behind the scenes. Apparently, it is becoming American policy to be thoroughly passively aggressive.[xiv] We will not take the lead; we will ‘lead from behind’ (indeed, it’s best if we can act without being detected altogether!)
Last week’s violence at American consulates and embassies demonstrates how easy it is to send masses of passionate and undereducated Muslim crowds in the Middle East over the edge (thanks to their activist Imams and ever-lurking Wahhabist terrorists cheering them on). As our diplomats are prone to say, “The political situation is complicated.” Unquestionably, that is true. However, we aren’t totally without fault when it comes to adding to the complications there. That is especially so since our approach in the international theater appears to be the practice of intentional misdirection – weaving the tangled webs deception famously achieves.
For several reasons, the contemporary attacks on United States’ consulates and embassies throughout the Middle East may not be what it seems. Certainly, the Obama administration has attempted to downplay the attacks suggesting that these protests-cum-killing sprees are merely an emotional reaction to a low-budget movie circulating on YouTube that insults the Prophet Mohammed. The initial hope was to downplay any possibility that terrorists were involved. That it transpired on 9/11 must also be purely coincidence. Consequently, United States U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice took to the Sunday talk shows this past week to minimize assertions that the attacks were planned.
However, the next day the State Department was already walking these statements back after Senator John McCain pointed out that ‘spontaneous acts of religious zeal’ usually don’t include ‘lying in wait’ to assassinate an U.S. official. Neither do they usually involve packing heavy weapons such as rocket propelled grenades (RPGs) to a Muslim prayer meeting which according to the Obama State Department: “merely got out of control.” Five days later, the major news outlets are reporting that heavy weapons were involved and clearly, as the Libyan President said five days previously, it is ridiculous to believe these actions were random and unplanned.
Please understand, my arguments aren’t intended to be partisan. Such misleading statements are a tried and true tact for our government whether headed by Republican or Democrat. Our current administration just seems to be especially clumsy when it comes to making diplomatic statements and then having to walk them back before the ink is dry on the press release. Exactly what the U.S. real position is cannot be discerned from listening to the State Department or reigning President.
From this particular administration we hear words like, “Israel has never had a better friend than Barack Obama” while at the very same time Obama snubs a chance to meet with Benjamin Netanyahu when Israel’s Prime Minister is scheduled to speak to the United Nations next week (the week of September 23, 2012). This snub is especially mystifying when alternative news media uniformly predicts a coming war in the region (again while the regular media remains silent) – a war that threatens to go nuclear if selected stratagems go sideways.[xv] This politically motivated double-talk will only be surpassed after Israel attacks Iran and Obama condemns the action as unprovoked and driven by Israel’s unreasonable paranoia and unwillingness to exhaust diplomatic efforts first. When this occurs, remember you heard it hear first.
At the end of the day, Americans should realize what is really going on. It’s time for war. Therefore, I feel compelled to ask, “Is it an unreasonable bit of conspiracy theory to wonder if the attacks on America’s diplomatic missions overseas may be well-timed to fan the flames of popular opinion supporting an attack on the ‘over-zealous Muslim extremists’ namely Iran which does it’s best to act extreme?” After all, the American public is tired of wars in the Middle East. Supporting Israel, even in dire straits, wouldn’t be popular without events that tie directly to the United States. Something dramatic will be necessary to get our populace in the right frame of mind should involvement by our military become necessary.
Recall, we couldn’t let Saddam Hussein continue to threaten the oil supply. Neither can we let the Mahmoud Ahmadinejad interrupt the flow of oil through the Strait of Hormuz. The West depends upon ‘petrol’ as our British friends term it. We shouldn’t really be surprised that the West has a not-so-hidden agenda. As Knesset member, author, and Messianic Jew, Avi Lipkin said publicly this past summer at a conference where yours truly spoke (paraphrasing), “The western World moved against Iraq coincidentally because it wanted Saddam Hussein’s oil. Likewise, in the final analysis it will move against Iran for the same reason. And it will likely do this before October 1, 2012, so that President Obama won’t get a political bump immediately before the election from Americans rallying around their President in a time of crisis.” That is, timing only becomes a factor if Israel wants to influence the American election in a particular way. Avi may be wrong about the desire to help pick our president. At the end of the day, American policy in the Middle East and what our military does is likely a question much bigger than any single President can sway.
In the final analysis, who wins the presidential election may not really matter that much to Israel. Its leaders can predict what America will do when ‘push comes to shove’. Since World War II, our military-industrial complex has dominated our foreign policy and our decisions to make war when economic matters matter most. Working on behalf of our biggest mega-corporations, ‘American interests’ are defined by our government acting in concert with what’s best for the economy; thus, these bellicose decisions are actually easy to make. Only tactics require careful planning and debate at the highest levels in the darkened corridors of power. We must be careful how we position ourselves with the official diplomatic statements we make.
So, we might ask, what is the real agenda for America vis-à-vis Iran? Are we quietly encouraging Israel to do our dirty work so that we, along with our western allies, can enjoy the economic benefits by cornering the oil fields of the Middle East? The political implications regarding the reactions of Russia to this possible action boggle the mind. However, as much as I might want to engage in speculating how Russia would react having yet more American military on its southern flank – this is outside the confines of this article. What IS germane concerns what this possible (I believe probable) course of action conveys about America’s role in the world both today and in the years immediately ahead.
In short, because our country serves as the sole global superpower, Americans should realize our obvious but unspoken responsibility post-Cold War is guaranteeing the realization of a coordinated political strategy and financial policy on behalf of the Free World. America’s military is the dominating force ensuring the world’s richest nations stay rich. And yet, Christian leaders, who should be calling our government to account when it steps outside the guidelines for truth and justice as demanded by God’s Word, join in the chorus for patriotic wars of retaliation or preemptive military action against radical Islam. They offer little to no complaint. Thus, it should be no surprise that their congregations remain focused on minimizing disruptions to personal peace and accumulating wealth as a sign of God’s favor. As evangelicals, we too easily lapse into a position assuming our government acts in the best interests of its citizens and takes the moral high ground. We care about condemning homosexuality much more than the condemnation of making war just to protect the financial interests of our mega-corporations. No doubt, we fall into this way of thinking because it is the patriotic point of view.
Despite what most evangelical prophecy scholars have historically promoted as America’s ‘place in Bible prophecy’ (that is, America being entirely absent), this author along with a number of other not-so-young-lion-like writers, believes America is playing a crucial role in the final act of ‘the last days’. As stated earlier, ‘old guard’ conservative Christian authors (like Lindsey, LaHaye, and the other brethren I have reluctantly listed here) have historically supported the view that America plays no part in the last days. After all, repeating myself, the Bible doesn’t mention America by name. Consequently, our sensitivity as evangelicals is dulled to actions that might otherwise cause vigilant Christian citizens to stand up, take notice, and call for repentance in America.[xvi] Our eschatology, surely a surprise to many who wish to ignore the ‘arcane’ subject, does make a difference in how we witness our faith in the world.
Since American citizens benefit from our global superpower status nowadays as a matter of due course, we might be wise to consider why other nations could have a problem with our behavior (to say nothing about policy) since affected nations might be losing more than just a modicum of national sovereignty. Indeed, their natural resources just might be subject to seizure. Could this be part of why so many nations in the Middle East resent us? Is it actually something more than just a difference in religious affections? Is it not a part of the legacy of the ‘ugly American’ (the now-dated pejorative label denouncing our national arrogance)? We assume their hatred lies with in the fact they are Muslim and we are ‘Christian’. But is this the issue? Is religion really to blame? Or is it because they feel we still act as if their nations are mere colonies for Anglo-Americans and the other rich nations of the world to exploit? We might even go further in our introspection and ask if we want the burden of continuing to be one nation who has the military muscle to back up the collective demands of the ‘first-world’. After all, the way things are shaping up, this decision may amount to whether or not we wish to allow the Antichrist to take a seat at the helm in the twilight of our republic.
[i] “And they worshipped the dragon which gave power unto the beast: and they worshipped the beast, saying, Who [is] like unto the beast? who is able to make war with him?” (Revelation 13:4)
[ii] See http://www.globalfirepower.com/countries-comparison.asp for detailed comparisons of the many different military elements composing the world’s armies, navies and air power.
[iv] Professor Hugh Gusterson, “The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists,” March 18, 2009. See www.globalresearch.ca/PrintArticle.php?articleId=12785
[vi] See the film, Why We Fight (2006) by Eugene Jarecki, for a telling documentary on the role of America’s military. This directive by Cheney to Wolfowitz is discussed in the film.
[vii] “Can You Say ‘Permanent Bases’ [in Iraq]?” by Tom Engelhardt, The Nation Magazine, March 27, 2006.
[ix] The Prologue and Epilogue of Power Quest, Book Two: The Ascendancy of Antichrist in America, articulate this same point of view.
[xi] Along with authors Patrick Heron, Rob Skiba, Noah Hutchings, the late Frank Logsdon, the late J.R. Church, R. A. Coombs, and as mentioned, Doug Krieger.
[xiii] This virus was discovered in June 2010 and targets Siemens industrial software.
[xiv] I say this tongue in cheek. The U.S. regularly operates in a clandestine, passively aggressive manner.
[xv] On the other hand, the snub could all be part of the plan to throw off Muslim reaction to the situation, lessening the likelihood that Islamic nations will blame the U.S. for actions taken ‘solely by Israel, acting alone.’ Obama doesn’t want the American public to believe we were complicit by engaging in another conflict.
[xvi] Furthermore, many evangelical assume that a large portion of our population will be raptured before the final events of the Great Tribulation come to pass, subsequently, it seems a foregone conclusion that America won’t be a player. Our ranks will be decimated by the supernatural event.