I began writing an article in February on the increasing tensions between Israel and Iran but kept putting it aside for one reason or another. However, what occurred on April 11 gave me the incentive to finish it.
On Sunday, April 11, there was a cyberattack on Iran’s Natanz nuclear enrichment facility (its main one). The cyberattack caused a power failure at the facility, and Iran is calling it a “terrorist act.”
As of this writing, Israel has not commented on the incident directly, but it’s not hard to imagine that Israel was behind it. Israel has recently ramped up its warnings against Iran’s nuclear program, and this cyber attack occurred the night after Iran unveiled its new uranium enrichment equipment. “On Rouhani’s order, Iranian experts began injecting gas into a new generation of centrifuges at Natanz enrichment facility. Iran also began the mechanical testing of IR-9 centrifuges and launched an assembly line for its new generation of centrifuges.”
Also, this latest incident comes as diplomatic efforts to revive the bogus 2015 nuclear deal with Iran have resumed. Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned on April 7 that Israel will not be bound by any deal world powers make with Iran if it leads to Iran securing nuclear weapons.
Let’s go back to February when I read a report in the Jerusalem Post that perked up my ears and started my writing of this article.
I wonder if the writer of a February 21 article in the Jerusalem Post titled “After the Swap: Russia’s Role in Syria and Israel’s Policy” realized how prophetic his words were. He spoke of “Russia’s overall role in Syria and how it is able to facilitate aspects of the conflict.” He said, “It is important to understand how Russia does this to potentially see where Syria is going in the future.” He called Russia the “maestro” of the band and said it is unclear whether Iran and Turkey (and their proxies), the U.S., and Syria “will continue to play their roles in concert.”
He should have read Isaiah 17 and Ezekiel 38-39 to find the answer.
Who would have thought that Russia, Iran, and Turkey would ever form an alliance? But true to God’s word, they’ve done just that. They put aside their differences in order to achieve their shared goal of reducing Western influence in the region. And each of them has their individual goals of dominance in the region and the world.
Vladimir Putin stepped into a power vacuum created by the Obama administration’s failed policies and has managed to get Arab countries running to him to solve their problems. And Putin is playing to all sides. Here are some points made in the article:
- Russia has been an ally of the Syrian regime for decades. It has both a naval and airbase in northern Syria. This Russian presence and support for the Syrian regime led it to intervene in Syria in 2015, although Russia claimed this was to fight ISIS and other terrorist groups.
- Russia’s real intervention in Syria was intended to shift the Syrian conflict and leverage it into regional influence.
- Russia encouraged talks between Turkey and Iran; soon, they were running to Russia to ask what to do next.
- As Turkey became more pro-Russia and more pro-Iran, Russia moved to be the arbitrator of who could have what. When Turkey demanded Afrin [a city in northern Syria] and the ethnic cleansing of Kurds and needed the airspace to use its F-16s, Russia consented. The trade-off would be that the Syrian regime would get more slices of Idlib [in northwestern Syria].
- Russia sold Turkey S-400s “to create daylight between” (create distance or difference between) Turkey and the U.S., feeding on Turkey’s growing authoritarianism and conspiracy-minded leadership.
- Russia, Turkey, and Iran conspired to remove the U.S. from Syria by trying to break U.S. relations with its partners on the ground, the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF). In October 2019, it appeared they had gotten what they wanted when the U.S. agreed to leave. U.S. diplomats, insiders, and experts had all been marshaled to oppose the “endless” war in Syria. Former U.S. ambassador Robert Ford argued that America should leave, essentially saying let Russia, Turkey, and Iran have Syria.
- As the U.S. withdrew, Russia took over the American bases.
- Russia has a carrot-and-criticism approach with Israel on Syria. Putin has had his eye on Netanyahu since the 1990s and appears to have a good relationship with him and to understand Israel’s concerns. Yet, in November 2019, Russia said Israeli airstrikes were the “wrong move” in Syria. Later that month, Russia appeared to expose details of an Israeli airstrike. In 2017, Israeli media reports said Russia rejected a request to keep pro-Iranian groups 60 km. from the Golan border. But in August 2018, Russia claimed that Iranian forces pulled back to 85 km. from the Golan. Russia both supports Iran in Syria and explicitly or tacitly allows Israeli military actions against Iranian targets.
- Iran is sponging up Syria, building bases, moving in militias, and destabilizing Syria.
- Syria is now divided, occupied by Turkey, with the U.S. backing the SDF in the east, Iranian entrenchment in the south, and Israeli airstrikes.
- Russia has threaded the needle in Syria. It has enabled friction between the Syrian regime and Turkey, and between Israel and Iran, gambling on the idea that all those involved in Syria now come to Russia to figure out what to do next.
- A careful reading of Russian involvement shows how it acts as the ‘maestro’ of the Syrian conflict.
- Whether Iran, Israel, Turkey, the U.S., the Syrian Democratic Forces, Hayat Tahrir Al-Sham, the Turkish-backed Syrian National Army, Hezbollah, and everyone else in Syria will continue to play their role in concert is unclear. – Source
Other reports have claimed that Russia is now “the king,” “power broker,” or “master” of the Middle East.
An October 2017 Bloomberg article, “Putin Is Filling the Middle East Power Vacuum,” stated: “The Israelis and Turks, the Egyptians and Jordanians – they’re all beating a path to the Kremlin in the hope that Vladimir Putin, the new master of the Middle East, can secure their interests and fix their problems.” Russia’s influence in the region has increased “because Obama allowed it to,” claims Khaled Batarfi, professor at the Jeddah, Saudi Arabian branch of Alfaisal University. “Unfortunately, Obama withdrew to a great extent from the Middle East.” – Source
Current events show us that everyone is still playing their roles. As a matter of fact, it’s getting more concerning by the day.
Both Russia and Iran have increased their aggression since the Biden bunch took over the White House.
What is Iran doing besides what we’ve already mentioned?
Iran has increased its attacks through its proxies in Iraq near and at U.S. military bases, and in drone attacks against Saudi Arabia. Iran is also continuing with its uranium enrichment with a new batch of centrifuges and says it won’t back down unless the U.S. removes ALL of its sanctions. The reality, however, is that Iran never abided by the bogus Iran nuclear deal, and that’s why Trump ended it and reimposed sanctions.
Middle East expert Joel Rosenberg believes Iran is “getting ready to attack Israel” through its proxy Hezbollah (that is entrenched in Lebanon). He said, “If the Biden administration doesn’t find a way to neutralize the Iranian threat… Israeli leaders may feel they have no other choice but to strike Iran, and the implications for every country in the region – and for the U.S. – are huge.”
He believes Iran’s recent bold actions could be driving the Saudis to make a strategic peace deal with Israel, which will enrage Iran and its allies since Saudis are custodians of Islam’s two holy mosques. Iran and its allies are determined to “make sure Arabs and Israelis never make lasting peace, and will do everything in their power to create war and terror to prevent peace from taking hold,” Rosenberg stated. – Source
Saudi leaders have been somewhat aligning with Israel due to the threat from Iran, which they both share. Then there’s this recent development:
Saudi leaders tweeted online that Mecca and Medina are the holy places of Islam, not Jerusalem and the Temple Mount (currently occupied by the Al Aqsa Mosque). Another tweet from Morocco emphasized that “the Temple Mount and Al Aqsa Mosque is of no particular importance to Muslims and hopes for building of the Third Temple and arrival of ‘peace’ with it for all peoples.”
Another report, “Something is Cooking Between Israel and Saudi Arabia,” (as in strategic security) stated, “Saudi Arabia is hoping Netanyahu will win another term and succeed in weakening Iran, which has launched consistent attacks on Saudi Arabia” (through its proxy, the Houthis in Yemen). Zvi Yehezkeli, an Arab affairs analyst, said, “Iran is crushing the Saudis morning and evening. They are also conducting a military blitz on American facilities in Iraq [through their proxies Hezbollah and others], and all this at a time when the Americans are planning negotiations.” “Our neighborhood is beginning a new era and a new order,” he added. – Source
And What About Russia?
NATO scrambles jets 10 times to track Russian military planes across Europe. The incident occurred on March 29 when a “rare peak” of Russian bombers and fighters flew over the North Sea, Black Sea, and Baltic Sea. Russian activity across an unusually wide area of European skies came on the same day Russian aircraft were tracked off the coast of Alaska.
Buildup of Russian troops along Ukraine’s border and in Crimea. A U.S. Defense Dept spokesman confirmed that the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff called top military leaders in Russia and Ukraine and said the Pentagon is aware of reports concerning Russian troop movements. U.S. Army Raises Europe Threat Level To ‘Potential Imminent Crisis’ On Ukraine-Russia Fears.
Tensions are boiling, clashes have occurred, and Russia has warned NATO to stay out of it. Why Russian’s obsession with controlling this region? Russia needs warmer waters and ice-free ports in order to better maneuver its naval fleet. Its occupation and increasing militarization of the Crimean Peninsula poses a threat that goes well beyond this region. By using the Black Sea as a springboard, Russia can project power beyond its immediate surroundings — into the Middle East, the Balkans, and the Mediterranean — and strengthen its reemergence as a great power.
And what about the U.S.?
Biden administration removes a number of Gulf air defense batteries to further reduce U.S.’s presence in the Middle East despite Iran-backed Houthis’ recent waves of drone and missile strikes against targets in Saudi Arabia. If the U.S. is one of the “young lions” described in Ezekiel 38:13 that does not intervene when the Russian/Arab coalition invades Israel, this should not be a surprise. Israel will receive no help from other nations when this invasion occurs, each with their own motives for not doing so. But as we know, Israel won’t need help from anyone since God will personally intervene in a Mighty Way so that all the world will know who is God and protector of Israel.
In Daymond Duck’s March 14 article, “The Power of God,” he notes the following:
“Concerning the latter years and latter days Battle of Gog and Magog, in the last 2 weeks:
- A Libyan oil tanker named the Emerald dumped an estimated 150 or more tons of tar and contaminated waste into the Mediterranean Sea off the coast of Israel that polluted more than 90 miles of Israeli shoreline. A two-week investigation concluded that the Libyan tanker originated in Iran, was destined for Syria, and the pollutants were deliberately dumped near Israel.
- There was an explosion on both sides of an Israeli-owned cargo ship coming out of Saudi Arabia in the Gulf of Oman. The ship and cargo were damaged, but the ship did not sink. Israel blamed the explosions on Iran.
- An Iranian-backed militia in Iraq fired at least 10 rockets at a U.S. base in Iraq that killed a U.S. citizen.
- Iranian-backed Houthis fired rockets at Saudi Arabia almost every day. – Source
Since then, there was an attack on another Israel-owned cargo ship on March 25, and Israel is said to be behind the attack on an Iranian cargo ship in retaliation on April 6. Defense Minister Benny Gantz declined to react to the report that Israel was behind the attack on the Iranian ship, simply stating that Israel is preparing for threats on all possible fronts.
As we know, Israel has conducted many strikes aimed at Iranian-backed targets in Syria in an attempt to thwart Iran’s devious plans. Iran has entrenched itself there with its own military forces and through its proxies. And besides smuggling weapons and ammunition to its proxy Hezbollah through commercial flights from Iran to Lebanon, it has made many attempts to move its weapons from Damascus to Hezbollah, obviously for a future attack on Israel. Iran has made its intentions to destroy the Jewish state loud and clear.
Prime Minister Netanyahu warned on April 5 that Israel will not be bound by any deal world powers make with Iran if it leads to Iran securing nuclear weapons. And he has also stated that Israel is prepared to act alone if needed to stop Iran from doing so.
Early last month, when asked in a Fox News interview if it’s true that the Israeli military is updating plans to strike Iranian nuclear sites and is prepared to act independently, Israel’s Defense Minister Benny Gantz responded that Israel is working on these plans. “The Iranian nuclear aspiration must be stopped. If the world stops them before, it’s very much good. But if not, we must stand independently and we must defend ourselves by ourselves,” he said.
Iran’s Defense Minister Hatami responded by stating that Iran’s military will level Tel Aviv and Haifa should Israel do anything “out of desperation.”
Former Israeli fighter pilot Maj. Gen. Tal Kalman, who heads the IDF’s Iran Directorate, says dealing with challenges Iran poses for Israel is a delicate and complex mission, but one the IDF is more than capable of handling.
All of this bears close watching. What will be the matchstick that sets in motion the fulfillment of Isaiah 17 and Ezekiel 38-39? Regardless, God’s word tells us what will go down.
Damascus will be completely destroyed, and both southern Syria and northern Israel will be severely damaged (Isaiah 17). The modern-day nations that are considered to be the ones involved in a last days’ attack against Israel (likely after the destruction of Damascus, etc.) are Russia, Iran, Turkey, and others, with Russia as the ‘maestro’ of the invasion.
All three of these nations’ leaders have ambitious global goals. Turkey’s President Erdogan wants to recreate the Ottoman Empire. Iran wants to set up a Shiite Islamic Caliphate. Russia’s President Putin wants to control the world’s oil and sees Israel as a threat to that control. Britt Gillette pointed out the following in an April 2020 end-times article that speaks of the coronavirus-induced oil price war:
“If Russia controlled the Middle East, they could control the world’s oil. Only two nations stand in Putin’s way – the United States and Israel. If a global depression, the rapture, or another major event changes U.S. policy in the Middle East, only Israel will stand between Russia and complete dominance of the global oil market. The high stakes incentivize Russia to team up with Iran and take out Israel. This will secure their collective grip on the region.
The Bible says this will happen. More than 2,600 years ago, Ezekiel revealed an alliance composed of Russia, Iran, Turkey, and other regional nations will launch a surprise attack on Israel from the north (Ezekiel 38-39). Since the launch of the Syrian civil war in 2011, we’ve seen each of the major players mentioned move their forces into Syria. Russia and its allies currently sit on Israel’s northern border, which is the direction from which Ezekiel said they’ll attack (Ezekiel 38:15; Ezekiel 39:2). We’ve been watching God set the stage for this conflict for several years. The coronavirus-induced oil price war provides yet another reason to expect we’re getting closer to seeing fulfillment of Ezekiel 38-39. – Source
In December 2010, Israel made a massive gas find off the coast of Haifa with enough reserves to supply Israel’s gas needs for an entire century. And in September 2015, after a year of drilling, Israel discovered an oil shale deposit on the Golan Heights. The immense size of it was reported weeks later. Interestingly, on September 30, 2015, Russia began its military campaign in Syria. The oil is a huge incentive for Russia to lead an invasion of Israel.
But God will personally intervene and destroy the invaders en masse. They will be food for the birds and the beasts. Many Bible prophecy experts agree with the following:
“Sheba, and Dedan [modern-day Saudi Arabia], and the merchants of Tarshish [this could represent modern-day England], with all the young lions thereof [would include the U.S. in that case], shall say unto thee, Art thou come to take a spoil?” (Ezekiel 38:13a).
In other words, they won’t be involved in this invasion but will protest it.
Also, see Daymond Duck’s 2017 article, “Slowly Shaping Up,” in which he describes the players in this invasion.
So, we see that Saudi Arabia is getting closer with Israel these days due to the Iran threat, even though it says it won’t make a peace agreement with Israel unless it agrees to move its borders beyond 1967 lines and allows for a ‘Palestinian State.’ However, if the Iran threat intensifies, this could cause Saudi Arabia to make that deal with Israel as other Arab nations have done in the past several months (Abraham Accords).
The United States is already being torn apart by the Biden regime that intends to finish what Obama began in earnest – that is, taking down the U.S., the only nation standing in the way of global government. This would be a reason for the U.S. not to come to Israel’s defense. The Biden administration and many other Democrat leaders do not support Israel. Puppet Biden has filled his administration with anti-Israel activists. And his administration intends to push the Two-State (so-called) ‘solution’ – dividing up God’s land.
Something else that would definitely render the U.S. unable to come to Israel’s aid is the rapture when Jesus takes up all the Bible-believing Christians to escape the coming wrath in the Tribulation (Time of Jacob’s Trouble; Daniel’s 70th week), as promised.
We’ve seen a convergence of the prophesied end-time signs. Nation (ethic) against nation (ethnic), wars and rumors of wars everywhere you turn, increasing frequency and intensity of earthquakes, plagues and pestilence. Children are being indoctrinated by sinister leftist agendas in the education system. And we know how Jesus feels about children.
“At the same time came the disciples unto Jesus, saying, Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven? And Jesus called a little child unto him, and set him in the midst of them, And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoso shall receive one such little child in my name receiveth me. But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea” (Matthew 18:1-6).
Jesus said that when He returns, the world will again be like it was in the days of Noah and Lot, and there is absolutely no doubt that we’re there (Luke 17:26-30).
So, keep spreading the gospel, pray for the lost, and keep looking up, brethren.
“Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth” (Revelation 3:10).