History Expects the Sixth Seal in NYC (Revelation 6:12)

According to the New York Daily News, Lynn Skyes, lead author of a recent study by seismologists at the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory adds that a magnitude-6 quake hits the area about every 670 years, and magnitude-7 every 3,400 years.

A 5.2-magnitude quake shook New York City in 1737 and another of the same severity hit in 1884.

Tremors were felt from Maine to Virginia.

There are several fault lines in the metro area, including one along Manhattan’s 125th St. – which may have generated two small tremors in 1981 and may have been the source of the major 1737 earthquake, says Armbruster.

“The problem here comes from many subtle faults,” explained Skyes after the study was published.

He adds: “We now see there is earthquake activity on them. Each one is small, but when you add them up, they are probably more dangerous than we thought.”

Armbruster says a 5.0-magnitude earthquake today likely would result in casualties and hundreds of millions of dollars in damage.

“I would expect some people to be killed,” he notes.

The scope and scale of damage would multiply exponentially with each additional tick on the Richter scale. (ANI)

Hamas wants ‘intifada’ outside the Temple Walls (Revelation 11)

Hamas wants ‘intifada’ after Iyad al-Hallak shooting, protests expected

On Saturday, a protest titled “Murder in the Streets: Justice for Iyad al-Hallak” is scheduled to start in Jerusalem at 8:30 p.m., while another is scheduled to start in Jaffa at 7:30 p.m.

Hamas blamed Israel’s government in response to the shooting of 32-year-old special needs student Iyad al-Hallak on Saturday, saying in a statement that “the execution of a Palestinian with special needs proves the sadism of the Israeli leadership.” 

“Such crimes are a fuel for the Palestinian people’s revolution, which will not stop fighting until the withdrawal of the occupiers from all our lands,” the organization said. “The response of our people, every time, will be continued resistance and intifada.”

Following the incident, the gates to the old city have been closed by Jerusalem police, in fear of protests. The Temple Mount is scheduled to reopen tomorrow.

On Saturday, a protest titled “Murder in the Streets: Justice for Iyad al-Hallak” is scheduled to start in Jerusalem at 8:30 p.m., while another is scheduled to start in Jaffa at 7:30 p.m.In the Knesset, reactions to the incident ranged between mourning and rage. Blue and White leader Yair Lapid tweeted that “the death of a young person with special needs is heartbreaking and Israel as a whole is bowing its head in mourning. This is not our way.”Joint List Chairman Ayman Odeh sent his condolences to the family of the bereaved, saying of the incident that “we must fight against the expected whitewashing of the case and make sure the cops sit in jail, while at the same time remembering that they only pulled the trigger, but the occupation loaded their weapon.” 

“Justice will only be served when the al-Halak family, their friends and the rest of the Palestinian people know freedom and independence,” Odeh added.Joint List MK Ahmed Tibi later visited the house of the bereaved family. He called for the camera footage of the incident to be released and said that international intervention was needed, as the incident occurred “in an area under occupation.”

Joint List MK Aida Touma Sliman referenced a recent statement made by Israel’s new Public Security Minister Amir Ohana, saying “The new police minister recently said whomever attacks a police officer is responsible for his own death. Apparently, that is the case for all Palestinians – whatever they do.”

“If you are shocked by the killings in the US, look at what’s happening here – an entire people under occupation cannot breathe,” she said.

MK Ofer Kassif of the Joint List said following the man’s death that “the incident today in Jerusalem can only be defined as murder by police officers.” 

According to Kassif, Israel’s government shares some blame for the incident. 

“The incitement from the government’s corridors has worked as planned and now every Palestinian is a terrorist until proven otherwise. ‘Terrorists’ are executed even when lying on the ground or running for their lives,” he said.

“The real terror is military rule, occupation, which promises to continue to pour blood here every day,” Kassif concluded.

Meretz leader Nitzan Horowitz commented on twitter that he had demanded further investigation into the incident, saying “I contacted the police demanding to investigate the killing of Iyad al-Hallak, a young man with special needs.” “Police called him as he walked around the Lion’s Gate. He probably didn’t understand or know to respond. The cops started chasing him and although he did not commit any crime, was unarmed, and was not threatening them in any way, opened fire (7 bullets). Why?” He asked. 

“An unforgivable act,” Horowitz concluded.

 Meretz chairman MK Tamar Zandberg said she “initiated a debate on the Knesset’s internal committee and called to investigate the circumstances of the incident and the trigger-happy policy.” “Instead of more relief and forgiveness for loss of life, a 180 degree policy change must be made,” she said. 

The French Nuclear Horn (Daniel 7)

It is estimated that France has the third-largest nuclear weapon stockpile globally.

France was among the pioneers of nuclear weapons technology. Currently, France refuses to acknowledge the number of nuclear weapons she has but the international community believes France has the third-largest nuclear weapons stockpile globally, approximately 300 of which are in deployment. This number begs the question, “why does France have such a high number of nuclear weapons?” International relations are volatile. Today’s allies may be tomorrow’s enemies and France knows this fact too well from as early as World War I. Apart from the French nuclear weapon programme, the country also has a massive peaceful nuclear programme and generates among the world’s largest quantities of nuclear power.

Force de Frappe

In the late 1950s and 1960s, France initiated Force de frappe (Strike Force). This force was to enable the country to operate independently without the help of NATO using nuclear deterrence on future superior enemies. Force de frappe used sea, air, and land-based nuclear weapons for deterrence. To date, France Nuclear Force, a section of the French Military, remains the third-largest nuclear force in the world after the US and Russia.

Testing In Algerian Sahara

France did 210 nuclear tests between 1960 and 1995 within its territory and overseas territories. Between 1960 and 1966, the country conducted seventeen tests in the then French Algeria within the Sahara Desert. Thirteen of these tests were underground. Apart from geographic location, they choose Algeria because of the Algerian War that was ongoing. The Centre Saharien d’Expérimentations Militaires ((C.S.E.M) Saharan Military Experiments Centre), Centre Interarmées d’Essais d’Engins Spéciaux ((CIEES) Joint Special Vehicle Testing Center), and Centre d’Expérimentations Militaires des Oasis (C.E.M.O) conducted the tests under different code names like Gerboise Bleue (“Blue jerboa”) and Gerboise Rouge.

Testing In French Polynesia

France also conducted 193 tests in French Polynesia in the South Pacific Ocean from 1966 to 1996. Initially, the military did not favor French Polynesia because of its distance from France and its lack of a large airport. However, after Algeria gained independence, the rest of the tests took place in French Polynesia. France conducted her last nuclear test in the South Pacific Ocean in 1996 just before signing the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) the same year. In 2008, the country announced that she had reduced the nuclear arsenal in the French Airforce by 30%, leaving Force de Frappe with only 290 nuclear warheads. Today, France has deactivated all her land-based nuclear missiles. Between 1996 and 2012, France used powerful supercomputers to simulate nuclear tests and also for study purposes. Currently, French law dictates that out of four submarines on patrol at any given time, one must carry a nuclear weapon.

Protests Against French Nuclear Tests

The Algerian Sahara tests elicited protests from Egypt, Nigeria, Ghana, and Japan. Of the seventeen, an accident happened during one test leading to radiation exposure to soldiers and a section of civilians. Moroccan and Liberian government denounced the tests. Over 26 Afro-Asian countries also condemned the tests at the United Nations General Assembly. Between 1960 and 1996, governments, lobby groups, think tanks, and Civil Society groups in New Zealand and Australia staged several protests against testing in the South Pacific. In 1972, Australia and New Zealand took France to the International Court of Justice.

About the Author

• Mark Owuor Otieno

• Writer

Mark is a student at Maseno University and community commentator in Kenya. Mark also has interests in geography, African history, and international development.

The First Nuclear War: 22 years of Nuclear India and Pakistan (Revelation 8 )

Early adulthood: 22 years of Nuclear India and Pakistan

May 30, 2020

The author reviews the conceptual evolution of nuclear deterrence in both countries over the past two decades, and the role nuclear weapons play in their national security strategies

This month saw the 22nd anniversary of the Indian and Pakistani nuclear tests. In May 1998, India chose to announce its nuclear weapons capability by conducting five tests on 11 and 13 May. Pakistan followed about two weeks later with six nuclear tests. As summer temperatures peaked, so did nuclear rhetoric on both sides.

Both countries have been operationalising their individual concepts of nuclear deterrence over the past two decades. India follows the dictum of credible minimum deterrence as enunciated in its nuclear doctrine—which was announced as a draft in 1999, and then as an official document in 2003. Pakistan began with the same concept but transitioned a few years ago to the idea of full spectrum deterrence. This new concept is meant to project deterrence at all levels of conflict—sub-conventional, conventional, and nuclear—with an arsenal that includes varied yields of warheads and a range of delivery systems.

Advances in the technological sophistication of Indian and Pakistani nuclear capabilities were only to be expected. Indeed, the types of delivery vehicles have grown, as has their range, accuracy, and reliability across launch platforms. Both countries have come a long way from the first-generation short-range ballistic missiles; Prithvi 1 in the case of India and Hatf 1 and 2 in the case of Pakistan. The numbers of nuclear warheads are estimated at 130-140 for India and 150-160 for Pakistan. Of course, neither officially corroborates or denies these figures. Some of the newer capabilities that are currently under development and testing include the ability of missiles to carry multiple independently targetable re-entry vehicles (MIRVs) in Pakistan, and rudimentary developments in hypersonic technologies in India.

Capability, however, is only one leg of the three-legged stool on which nuclear deterrence rests. The other two legs include the resolve to use this capability and the communication of both capability and resolve.

Resolve to use capability has a military and political dimension. Military resolve is to be found in the existence of requisite command and control structures, operational logistics, etc. These underpin the ability to handle deterrence breakdown by maintaining sufficient robustness for retaliation. Political resolve is more amorphous and may be gauged, among others, from the personality of the leadership and his/her ability to take hard, even unpopular decisions, across a diverse spectrum of issues.

India’s demonstration of resolve, traditionally seen as weak, is perceived to have become more evident over the last half a decade. Military responses to terrorist attacks supported by Pakistan since 2016, as well as a strong prime minister who has not shied away from decisions such as demonetisation or a nationwide lockdown to fight COVID-19, illustrate a strong political will.

Meanwhile, with a first use doctrine and a military-predominant system, Pakistani resolve is perceived in its projection of the use of ‘tactical nuclear weapons’ mounted on shoot and scoot systems to target the battlefield. The army is the prime driver of Pakistani nuclear decision-making, and the command chain signals integration of nuclear and conventional operations. This contrasts with the Indian system where the political leader is at the helm of nuclear command, and nuclear weapons are not integrated with conventional warfare. So, for India, demonstration of political resolve is perceived to be of greater consequence for deterrence, while for Pakistan, the military dimension is of greater significance.

The third leg of deterrence rests on communication or signalling. The experience in this domain is that Pakistan has chosen to maintain a far higher pitch regarding its nuclear dimension than India. This is not surprising since Pakistan uses its nuclear capability for purposes other than just deterring the adversary’s nuclear weapons. The objectives of its nuclear weapons also include deterring the possibility of an Indian conventional response to acts of terrorism that Rawalpindi sponsors; drawing international attention towards a possible regional nuclear conflagration and thus seeking constraints on an Indian response; and bargaining with the West for military and financial assistance.

Frequently drawing attention to nuclear weapons is, therefore, a significant hallmark of Pakistan’s nuclear strategy. Prime Minister Imran Khan demonstrated this well in the wake of the Pulwama terrorist attack on Indian paramilitary forces in February 2019. Before and after the Indian military response targeting terrorist infrastructure in Balakot, he consistently emphasised the presence of nuclear weapons in both countries, and the consequences of their use for the region and beyond.

In contrast to Pakistan maintaining the spotlight on nuclear weapons, statements from Indian officialdom drawing attention to India’s nuclear capability have traditionally been few. In fact, from 2003 to 2013, New Delhi hardly made any notable nuclear references. In April 2013, two years after the Pakistani announcement of tactical nuclear weapons, a speech was made by the then head of India’s National Security Advisory Board (NSAB) to reiterate India’s strategy of massive retaliation. There was another lull thereafter, punctuated only by a statement in November 2016 by then Defence Minister late Manohar Parrikar regarding no first use (NFU). The debate that followed is well-known. But, it was soon put to rest at the official level by clarifying that there was no change in India’s nuclear doctrine.

Some references to India’s nuclear weapons have been made more recently, one of them being by the prime minister himself during his election campaign. Another statement came along in August 2019 when the present Defence Minister Rajnath Singh made a reference to India’s nuclear doctrine. It is unclear whether such remarks are part of a considered government communication strategy or inadvertent statements made in a political context. In fact, one clear case of deliberate nuclear signalling that can be gleaned is the PM’s statement in October 2018 announcing INS Arihant’s first deterrent patrol.

Signalling is an important dimension of nuclear deterrence, and states must pick these  out from the hubris of rhetoric and political chatter. India and Pakistan do appear to have settled into some sort of a pattern of signalling, which creates a sense of predictability and allows a semblance of understanding. However, neither side should ever forget that nuclear weapons are not ordinary weapons, and must be treated with respect, restraint, and responsibility.

At the age of 22, and with the natural swagger of early adulthood, these two nuclear states—with the fate of over one and a half billion of humanity upon their shoulders—can ill-afford rash misadventures.

Dr Manpreet Sethi

Distinguished Fellow with the Centre for Air Power Studies (CAPS), New Delhi.

Donald Trump is ‘Catastrophically Stupid’

Donald Trump’s Nuke-Testing Idea Is ‘Catastrophically Stupid’

May 29, 2020,The teapot nuclear test in Nevada in 1955.

National Nuclear Security Administration

The administration of Pres. Donald Trump reportedly is discussing the possibility of resuming nuclear-weapons tests following a 28-year moratorium.

It’s worse than a bad idea, multiple nuclear experts said.

“A bad idea is waiting a week too long to begin testing for the coronavirus,” said Joe Cirincione, a nuclear expert with the San Francisco-based Ploughshares Fund. “A bad idea is doing daily press briefings where you attack the press.”

“This,” Cirincione said of nuke-testing, “is a catastrophically stupid idea.”

The United States last conducted a live, explosive test of a nuclear warhead in September 1992. Four years later the United States signed, but did not ratify, the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty.

The treaty all but ended major nuclear-weapons tests by the world’s established atomic powers. These same powers continued testing their nuclear warheads using sophisticated computer simulations.

“There is no national-security reason to test,” Cirincione said. “With the modern computer and technical diagnostic tools, our national laboratories know more about the performance of our nuclear weapons than ever before. The labs have repeatedly certified for decades that the stockpile is safe, reliable and effective.”

But live explosive tests are necessary for the development of new warhead designs. “Testing thus opens the floodgates to developing all kinds of new and different nuclear weapons,” said Bruce Blair, a Princeton University nuclear expert.

If the United States resumed testing, so too could countries whose own nuclear arsenals aren’t as sophisticated as America’s is. “India, Pakistan, perhaps China and most certainly North Korea would promptly test,” Cirincione said. “Who in their right minds would want to give these nations better nuclear weapons? But that is what new U.S. tests would do. They would breed nuclear tests around the world.”

“Russia and China have a lot more to gain from explosive testing than we do,” said Jeffrey Lewis, director of the East Asia Nonproliferation Program at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey.

“China has limited stores of weapons-grade plutonium and heavy warhead designs,” said Gregory Kulacki, a nuclear expert with the Union of Concerned Scientists in Massachusetts. “A resumption of explosive testing allow them to test lighter, more efficient designs that would stretch their limited stores of fissile material and make it easier for them to put multiple warheads on their missiles.”

The result most likely would be a runaway nuclear-arms race, of the kind that diplomats spent decades trying to contain during the Cold War. An arms race, Lewis said, “is a bad thing.”

“Arms racing increases unpredictability and the risk of conflict escalating into nuclear war,” Blair explained. “It also would motivate non-nuclear countries to go nuclear and thus encourage proliferation.”

“In short,” Blair said, “testing runs contrary to the U.S. national security interest by making the outbreak of nuclear war more likely.”

Iran Continues to Raise Her Nuclear Horn (Daniel 8:4)

Iran says it will continue nuclear work despite US sanctions

Photo: Majid Asgaripour, AP

FILE – In this Oct. 26, 2010, file photo, a worker rides a bicycle in front of the reactor building of the Bushehr nuclear power plant, just outside the southern city of Bushehr. Iran said Friday, May 29, 2020, its experts would continue nuclear development activities, despite sanctions imposed earlier this week on their fellow scientists by the United States.

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iran said Friday its experts would continue nuclear development activities, despite sanctions imposed earlier this week on their fellow scientists by the United States.

State TV cited a statement from the country’s nuclear department saying the U.S. decision to impose sanctions on two Iranian nuclear scientists indicate continuation of a “hostile” attitude. It said the sanctions would make them “determined to continue their nonstop efforts more than before.”

The statement said the sanctions violate international law.

On Wednesday, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo imposed sanctions on two officials with Iran’s atomic energy organization, Majid Agha’i and Amjad Sazgar, who are involved in the development and production of centrifuges used to enrich uranium.

Pompeo also said he would revoke all but one of the sanctions waivers covering civil nuclear cooperation. The waivers had allowed Russian, European and Chinese companies to continue to work on Iran’s civilian nuclear facilities without drawing American penalties.

Waivers that permitted work at the Arak heavy water plant and the Tehran Research Reactor had been in place until now. A waiver for work at the Bushehr nuclear power station will be the only one extended.

Since the U.S. withdrawal from Iran’s nuclear deal with world powers in 2018, Iran has gradually taken steps away from the accord and started injecting uranium gas into more than a thousand centrifuges. Iran says the steps could be reversed if Europe offers a way for it to avoid U.S. sanctions choking off its crude oil sales abroad.

Iran is also enriching uranium up to 4.5% in violation of the accord’s limit of 3.67%. Enriched uranium at the 3.67% level is enough for peaceful pursuits but is far below weapons-grade levels of 90%.

At the 4.5% level, it is enough to help power Iran’s Bushehr reactor, the country’s only nuclear power plant. Prior to the nuclear deal, Iran had reached up to 20%.

Israel Continues to Trample Outside the Temple Walls (Revelation 11)

Watchdog: Israeli forces committed 106 human rights violations last week

GAZA, Friday, May 29, 2020 (WAFA) – The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) has documented 106 violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law (IHL) perpetrated by Israeli forces and settlers in the occupied Palestinian Territories last week.

It said in a report that Israeli forces shot and wounded five Palestinian civilians, including a child, during Israeli military raids into Ramallah and Tubas that included the use of live ammunition.

In Gaza, six shootings by Israeli forces against agricultural lands east of the Gaza Strip were reported.

The report added Israeli forces carried out 47 incursions into the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem. Those incursions included raids of civilian houses and shootings, enticing fear among civilians, and attacking many of them. During this week’s incursions, 48 Palestinians were arrested, including 2 children.

On settlement expansion activities and settlers’ attacks, the PCHR documented 8 violations, including the dismantling of a caravan and demolition of an under-construction house in the central Jordan Valley, demolition of a barn, and demotion of two resorts in an archeological site in Nablus. It said three Palestinians were forced to self-demolish their homes.

The PCHR also documented nine settler attacks: Palestinian lands set on fire, farmers assaulted and trees cut off in Tulkarm; two houses and vehicles assaulted in Nablus; two Palestinians shot and wounded, and two others assaulted in Ramallah; agriculture lands set on fire in Hebron; and trees uprooted in Salfit.

On the Israeli closure policy and restrictions on freedom of movement, the PCHR said Israeli forces continued to use the Erez Crossing, on Gaza-Israel border that is designated for movement of individuals, as an ambush to arrest Palestinians who obtain permits to exit via Israel.