The Quakes Preceding the Sixth Seal: Revelation 6:12

East Coast Quakes: What to Know About the Tremors Below

By Meteorologist Dominic Ramunni Nationwide PUBLISHED 7:13 PM ET Aug. 11, 2020 PUBLISHED 7:13 PM EDT Aug. 11, 2020

People across the Carolinas and Mid-Atlantic were shaken, literally, on a Sunday morning as a magnitude 5.1 earthquake struck in North Carolina on August 9, 2020.

Centered in Sparta, NC, the tremor knocked groceries off shelves and left many wondering just when the next big one could strike.

Items lie on the floor of a grocery store after an earthquake on Sunday, August 9, 2020 in North Carolina.

Fault Lines

Compared to the West Coast, there are far fewer fault lines in the East. This is why earthquakes in the East are relatively uncommon and weaker in magnitude.

That said, earthquakes still occur in the East.

According to Spectrum News Meteorologist Matthew East, “Earthquakes have occurred in every eastern U.S. state, and a majority of states have recorded damaging earthquakes. However, they are pretty rare. For instance, the Sparta earthquake Sunday was the strongest in North Carolina in over 100 years.”

While nowhere near to the extent of the West Coast, damaging earthquakes can and do affect much of the eastern half of the country.

For example, across the Tennesse River Valley lies the New Madrid Fault Line. While much smaller in size than those found farther west, the fault has managed to produce several earthquakes over magnitude 7.0 in the last couple hundred years.

In 1886, an estimated magnitude 7.0 struck Charleston, South Carolina along a previously unknown seismic zone. Nearly the entire town had to be rebuilt.


The eastern half of the U.S. has its own set of vulnerabilities from earthquakes.

Seismic waves actually travel farther in the East as opposed to the West Coast. This is because the rocks that make up the East are tens, if not hundreds, of millions of years older than in the West.

These older rocks have had much more time to bond together with other rocks under the tremendous pressure of Earth’s crust. This allows seismic energy to transfer between rocks more efficiently during an earthquake, causing the shaking to be felt much further.

This is why, during the latest quake in North Carolina, impacts were felt not just across the state, but reports of shaking came as far as Atlanta, Georgia, nearly 300 miles away.

Reports of shaking from different earthquakes of similar magnitude.

Quakes in the East can also be more damaging to infrastructure than in the West. This is generally due to the older buildings found east. Architects in the early-to-mid 1900s simply were not accounting for earthquakes in their designs for cities along the East Coast.

When a magnitude 5.8 earthquake struck Virginia in 2011, not only were numerous historical monuments in Washington, D.C. damaged, shaking was reported up and down the East Coast with tremors even reported in Canada.


There is no way to accurately predict when or where an earthquake may strike.

Some quakes will have a smaller earthquake precede the primary one. This is called a foreshock.

The problem is though, it’s difficult to say whether the foreshock is in fact a foreshock and not the primary earthquake. Only time will tell the difference.

The United State Geological Survey (USGS) is experimenting with early warning detection systems in the West Coast.

While this system cannot predict earthquakes before they occur, they can provide warning up to tens of seconds in advance that shaking is imminent. This could provide just enough time to find a secure location before the tremors begin.

Much like hurricanes, tornadoes, or snowstorms, earthquakes are a natural occuring phenomenon that we can prepare for.

The USGS provides an abundance of resources on how to best stay safe when the earth starts to quake.

Why Iran will become a latent nuclear state

Why Iran may become a latent nuclear state

The gloom over Vienna nuclear talks could bring doom to the Middle East.

As the negotiations to salvage the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement resume in Vienna, it is a déjà vu all over again. The United States warns of crippling sanctions, Israel threatens war, the Europeans plead and prod, and the Arabs watch from the sidelines, as Iran drags out the talks and accelerates its uranium enrichment.

Except this time, diplomacy seems destined to fail, leaving the door open to a number of scenarios, which, thanks to former US President Donald Trump and his Middle East brain trust, former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, include war and/or the distinct possibility of Iran becoming a latent nuclear state.

After all, it was Trump who decided to nuke the internationally recognised 2015 agreement. After repeatedly condemning it as “rotten” and “disastrous”, he abandoned it in 2018 on the basis of unsubstantiated and unrelated allegations.

To make matters worse, Trump imposed new crippling sanctions on Iran, including secondary sanctions on third parties trading with the country, and ordered the assassination of its most revered general, Qassem Soleimani.

Boxed in, Iran lashed out in all directions. Most importantly, it renewed its uranium enrichment programme, bringing it ever closer to weapons-grade level.

After US President Joe Biden took office in January, he failed to use the small window of opportunity to disavow his predecessor’s policies and get the deal back on track in the first half of the year. His attempts to exploit Trump’s sanctions to force Tehran into accepting new conditions have backfired.

In August, Ebrahim Raisi, a hardline cleric and a protégé of Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, was elected president of Iran.

Today, Tehran insists its return to the agreement is conditional on the Biden administration’s lifting “all sanctions” imposed after 2017 – whether nuclear-related or not. It expects Washington to provide the necessary guarantees that no future administration may abandon the deal again. And it will wait for proof that the sanctions are totally and truly lifted before making any moves towards the agreement. It also rejects any and all discussion of its missile systems and regional role.

For its part, Washington expects Iran to return to the status quo ante and dispose of the highly enriched uranium and the powerful centrifuges that produced it before nuclear-related sanctions are lifted. It insists other sanctions may only be lifted after Iran changes its “destabilising” regional behaviour. And it also insists on the need for a more comprehensive, more permanent agreement that guarantees Iran may never produce nuclear weapons.

In short, as mistrust runs deep and expectations run wild, a return to the 2015 agreement is looking utterly improbable and terribly insufficient to settle the nuclear issue.

That is why, the Biden administration is contemplating the use of so-called Plan B, which includes stronger diplomatic pressure and tougher economic sanctions against Iran.

But then again, this is a policy that has been tried and has failed many times. What is the point of redeploying it, knowing Iran could accelerate its uranium enrichment to the 90 percent needed to become a nuclear state, while its hardline government boasts mounting “economic resistance” against American imperialism?

If America does not play it carefully, it may have to go at it alone. Russia and China are not going to join any new American pressure campaign against Iran, considering their tensions with the Biden administration. It is doubtful the Europeans will join either, without a realistic endgame in sight.

That is why the US has recently warned that “all options are on the table”. But we have heard that before regarding the Taliban in Afghanistan and look how that turned out. We have also heard it muttered on Ukraine, Taiwan, Venezuela, Syria, North Korea, etc.

Some reports now speak of the Biden administration outsourcing the war option to Israel, giving the region’s only nuclear power the green light to act militarily against the Iranian nuclear programme, which may well lead to an all-out regional war.

The record shows that the US is disposed to making bad decisions on false pretences that lead to horrific outcomes in the Middle East, but I doubt we are close to another foolish decision yet.

Neither Washington nor Tehran is interested in such military escalation. Biden’s strategy is to largely disengage militarily from the Middle East hotspots, not get drawn into a quagmire worse than the Iraq war.

And despite his bluster, Khamenei has shown to be careful not to drag Iran into a military confrontation with the US – one that is sure to cripple the Islamic Republic, weaken its regime and damage its regional standing.

That is why, Washington will persist in its pursuit of a diplomatic solution, knowing all too well that Iran will continue to drag its feet in Vienna while it speeds up its enrichment, even refusing, for now, to negotiate directly with the Americans before sanctions are lifted.

And here lies the fundamental difference between Vienna 2015 and Vienna 2021.

Tehran may no longer be accelerating its enrichment to use as leverage in the negotiations, as it did prior to the 2015 agreement, but rather to become a de facto latent nuclear state.

To be clear, a latent nuclear state is not a nuclear power. It is a state that possesses the know-how and the resources to quickly become one – much like Japan, which is also a signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). By contrast, Israel, which is a nuclear power, is not a signatory.

In fact, Iran has long wanted to be like Japan. Iranians who see Japan as a model to emulate, have long considered it a double standard that Japan can have the fuel cycle and “stay happily” in the NPT, but Iran cannot.

Iran may be more interested at this point in time in becoming a latent nuclear state like Japan than a nuclear power like India, Pakistan or Israel.

Not only is this consistent with its official line, which states that Iran will not develop nuclear weapons that it considers “immoral”, it is also more realistic than becoming a nuclear power and more achievable than ever before.

Short of a dramatic political reversal, this could lead to a direct confrontation with the US and/or Israel. But my guess is that for the foreseeable future, it is going to be the Arabs, those in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Yemen and elsewhere, who support a Middle East free of nuclear weapons, that will pay the price of this foolish regional Cold War.

Final results confirm Antichrist’s victory in last month’s Iraqi vote

A woman holds a picture of Sadr's movement leader Moqtada al-Sadr, as his supporters celebrate after preliminary results of Iraq's parliamentary election were announced in Baghdad, Iraq October 11, 2021. REUTERS/Thaier Al-Sudani/File Photo

Final results confirm Sadr’s victory in last month’s Iraqi vote

November 30, 20218:27 AM MSTLast Updated 7 hours ago

CAIRO, Nov 30 (Reuters) – Iraq released final results on Tuesday from last month’s general election, confirming populist Shi’ite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr’s movement’s victoryas the biggest bloc, with 73 seats in the fractious 329-seat house.

The Taqaddum Party, which draws support from minority Sunni Muslims, won 37 seats. Former Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s State of Law group won 33 seats, and the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) secured 31, according to the results cited by state media.

The results were broadly in line with preliminary figures released in the days after the Oct. 10 election, and unlikely to alter calculations much as politicians negotiate on the makeup of a new government. Pro-Iran groups who performed poorly have refused to accept the results.

Turnout reached 44%, the commission said, revised up from the 43% preliminary figure but still lower than in the last election in 2018.

More than 9.6 million people cast their ballots in the Oct. 10 vote, where at least 167 parties and more than 3,200 candidates competed for the parliament’s 329 seats, the commission said.

Reporting by Yasmin Hussein Writing by Ahmad Elhamy Editing by Peter Graff

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

Deployment of Russian nuclear weapons in Europe

Deployment of Russian nuclear weapons in Belarus possible, Lukashenko says

MINSK, 30 November (BelTA) – Russian nuclear weapons may be deployed in Belarus. Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko made the relevant statement in an interview with Dmitry Kiselyov, Director General of the Russian state news agency MIA Rossiya Segodnya, BelTA has learned.

The Belarusian head of state was asked about a recent statement by NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg regarding the possible deployment of nuclear weapons in Eastern Europe.

Aleksandr Lukashenko responded by saying: “Yes. Then I will suggest that Putin should return nuclear weapons to Belarus.”

“What nuclear weapons?” Dmitry Kiselyov asked Aleksandr Lukashenko to clarify.

The head of state said: “We will agree on what kind. The nuclear weapons that will be most effective in such an engagement. I said for a reason that we in Belarus’ territory are ready for it. As a thoughtful landlord I haven’t destroyed anything [of the USSR infrastructure for nuclear weapons], all the depots remain in place.”

China’s new hypersonic nukes threaten Babylon the Great

China has already ploughed $1 trillion into its military this year. Picture: Sam Yeh/AFP
China has already ploughed $1 trillion into its military this year. Picture: Sam Yeh/AFP

China’s hypersonic superweapons put US under threat, expert warns

Chris Bradford, The Sun

Leaders’ naivety about China’s military intentions are making US troops, bases and ships vulnerable, an expert has warned.

American air defences and ships are vulnerable to China’s hypersonic superweapons as officials in Washington appear naive about Beijing’s military intentions, an expert warns. Elites within the Chinese Communist Party are pursuing an imperialist agenda as the country aims to seek military parity with the US in the coming years, reported The Sun.

Beijing allegedly tested a hypersonic weapon that orbited the Earth in July, and a second missile was launched during the same test event, according to reports in the Financial Times and The Wall Street Journal.

The missile fell “harmlessly” into the South China Sea.

Its role remains unknown as commentators speculated that the missile could’ve been used to target or deflect a power’s defences against a potential hypersonic attack.

Officials in Washington were left scrambling as the test caught them off-guard.

Sam Armstrong, of the Henry Jackson Society, told The Sun: “We’re led to believe that the West was unaware of China’s hypersonic missile.

“Should it be true, it does lead us to question ‘Why are our leaders so naive about China’s intentions?’”

Mr Armstrong continued: “After the Cold War, there was a degree of naivety and hubris among Western foreign policy elites as they thought they had won the great battle of ideas.”

He warned that China is developing weapons at a speed that is designed to take out enemy vessels.

Mr Armstrong said that American vessels, troops, and military assets were vulnerable and officials in Washington had to realise that weapons were being created with the intention to take on the US.

Space Force General David Thompson warned: “We’re not as advanced as the Chinese or the Russians in terms of hypersonic programs.”

US President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping have agreed to hold talks designed at reducing tensions. Picture: Mandel Ngan/AFP
US President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping have agreed to hold talks designed at reducing tensions. Picture: Mandel Ngan/AFP

Mr Biden and Mr Xi have agreed to hold talks designed at reducing tensions, but Mr Armstrong says it’s difficult to see what the discussions will achieve.

He said: “China has very little to gain in giving up on its military or imperial ambitions right now. 

“It’s difficult to see what President Biden seeks to obtain in entering any talks unless China is prepared to say that its own military expenditure is threatening its own economic development at home.”

Beijing has developed missile targets shaped like US warships depicting a full-scale outline of at least two Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyers and a US carrier, pictures show.

China’s hi-tech Type 003 aircraft carrier is apparently nearing completion and Beijing has conducted tests using underwater explosives.

The country already has two aircraft carriers that are based on Soviet Cold War-era designs.

The new ship is expected to be a 100,000-ton‘ supercarrier’ and could match America’s powerful Nimitz class vessels.

It will feature more advanced aircraft launching technology, allowing it to launch the FC-31 new generation of stealth fighters much faster.

‘Red alert’

Matthew Funaiole, a senior fellow at the CSIS’s China Project, said the new ship would be the Chinese military’s “first foray into a modern aircraft carrier”.

And, officials have tested underwater explosives in what appears to be a strategy to potentially wipe out the US Navy.

Video from the state’s mouthpiece The Global Times shows a large gush of water rising into the air during a simulated attack at an unnamed naval port.

Thousands of pieces of data were collected by sensors as computers analysed how much of the port had been destroyed.

China has already ploughed $1 trillion into its military this year and has developed missile and radar systems that can rapidly sink US aircraft carriers. 

It has also developed the ability to shoot down American fighter jets and to threaten islands such as Okinawa and Guam.

Deployment of the DF-26 missile dubbed the “Guam killer” has rapidly expanded over the past year, according to a Pentagon intelligence report.

China currently possesses around 100 intercontinental ballistic missiles that have the potential to strike the continental US, but little is known about Beijing’s hypersonic development program.

The DF-17 is equipped with a hypersonic glide vehicle and was showcased in 2019 during a National Day military parade.

While the Xingkong 2 nuclear-capable hypersonic prototype was successfully tested at a target range in northwest China in 2018.

Although fears may be escalating about China’s future potential, the US’ nuclear stockpile considerably outnumber that of Beijing’s.

There’s no indication that Beijing is set to overtake Washington in the immediate years.

British Horn Threatens the Iranian Nuclear Horn: Daniel

Iranian flag flies in front of the UN office building, housing IAEA headquarters, amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, in Vienna, Austria, May 24, 2021. REUTERS/Lisi Niesner

UK, Israel to work together to stop Iran gaining nuclear weapons

November 28, 20214:22 PM MSTLast Updated 2 days ago

Nov 28 (Reuters) – Britain and Israel will “work night and day” in preventing Iran from becoming a nuclear power, the foreign ministers of the two countries wrote in a joint article.

“The clock is ticking, which heightens the need for close cooperation with our partners and friends to thwart Tehran’s ambitions,” the UK’s Liz Truss and her Israeli counterpart Yair Lapid wrote in the Telegraph newspaper on Sunday.

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said earlier in the day that his country was “very worried” that world powers will remove sanctions on Iran in exchange for insufficient caps on its nuclear programme, as negotiators convene in Vienna on Monday in a last-ditch effort to salvage a nuclear deal.

Meanwhile, Israel and Britain will sign a 10-year agreement on Monday to work closely on areas such as cybersecurity, technology, trade and defence, according to the Telegraph.

The foreign ministers added in the article that Israel will officially become Britain’s “tier one” cyber partner, in a bid to improve its cyber defences as countries around the world face increased threats.

Dealing with the Iranian Nuclear Horn: Daniel 8

Political scenarios vary from a US return to the deal with sanctions relief over Iran to using military force against Tehran.

Ali Bagheri Kani, Iran’s top nuclear negotiator, described the 2015 deal as a “total loss”, accusing his predecessors worked under the previous Rouhani government being weak.
Head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, IAEA, Rafael Mariano Grossi, left, seeks for greater access to Iran's nuclear facilities from the country's Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian.

Iranians and Americans have returned to the nuclear negotiating table once again to develop a framework to end the political deadlock created by the former Trump administration’s withdrawal from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action in 2018.

Considering the myriad disagreements between the two countries, it will not be an easy task. Negotiations restarted today in Vienna. 

A significant portion of the US establishment believes that a revitalised deal still might not work in limiting Tehran’s nuclear capability because Iran has already approached a level of uranium enrichment level – good enough to produce a nuclear weapon. 

On the other hand, the composition of the Iranian negotiation team, led by Ali Bagheri Kani, a hardliner, who previously said that he did not like the JCPOA signed in 2015, signalled that even with full sanctions relief, it will be difficult for Tehran to come to an agreement with the US. 

“I am not optimistic about the restart of indirect negotiations between Iran and the US on the nuclear deal (JCPOA). That’s because the person now heading the Iranian delegation is one of the hardest hardliners in the Iranian government,” says Matthew Bryza, a former US ambassador to Azerbaijan and a senior fellow at the Atlantic Council. 

In the past, Kani called the JCPOA agreement a “total loss” for Iran, Bryza tells TRT World

Bryza adds that there is a danger that Washington will see the negotiating lead as someone sent to simply bide time and is not a sign of sincerity.Ali Bagheri Kani, Iran’s top nuclear negotiator, described the 2015 deal as a “total loss”, accusing his predecessors worked under the previous Rouhani government being weak. (Shamil Zhumatov / Reuters Archive)

Diverging perceptions

The suspicion from the Americans is that the Iranians want to buy time towards developing nuclear weapons. This month, Iran appeared to have a stockpile of 60 percent enriched uranium, which is a crucial milestone for reaching 15 to 25 kilograms of 90 percent enriched uranium, a purity formula needed for an atomic weapon’s use. 

Despite negative US and Western perceptions of Iran’s nuclear program, Tehran reiterates that its uranium enrichment is for energy and other peaceful purposes. 

“That’s not right, Iran has always said that its nuclear program is not for military purposes and Iran is not looking forward to any kind of nuclear weapons,” says Fatima Karimkhan, a Tehran-based journalist. 

Karimkhan believes US efforts “to sell a picture that Iran is going to have some military purposes” by enriching uranium casts a shadow over the whole process.

While some Americans and their allies are “trying to push” Iran to produce a weapons-grade nuclear fuel, “it is not the case in Iran,” Karimkhan tells TRT World. 

Is the deal’s full compliance possible? 

Mounting suspicion on both sides regarding the other’s intentions makes full compliance of the deal a distant possibility, or something not likely in the short-term. 

“We are getting closer to a point at which returning to compliance with the JCPOA will not in and of itself recapture the benefits of the JCPOA,” said US Secretary of State Antony Blinken last month, referring to Iran’s increasing capability to make a nuclear bomb. 

Americans including Blinken increasingly appear to believe that Iran is so close to the level of developing a nuclear weapon, as a result, it’s meaningless to restore a deal, which aimed to limit Tehran’s nuclear capability in the first place. Head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, IAEA, Rafael Mariano Grossi, left, seeks for greater access to Iran’s nuclear facilities from the country’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian. (Vahid Salemi / AP)

Iranians are not so hopeful either.

“Here in Iran most people do not have a real expectation from these new negotiations,” says Karimkhan. For full compliance of the deal, Iranians are demanding the Biden administration provide a full sanctions relief package, which was imposed by the former Donald Trump administration.  

Tehran also demands that the Biden administration should guarantee that if Americans rejoin the agreement they will not withdraw from it again under any future US presidents. It’s something which is a difficult promise to make, and to keep. 

“They will not be able to reach an easy agreement in a short time because both countries want more for less and it will not be reachable in a short time. As a result, most of the people are not expecting an actual result,” Karimkhan observes. 

Bryza is also not “confident” that full compliance is going to happen after negotiations. But he also notes that other JCPOA signatories like the EU and the UK will push hard for full compliance of the deal. 

He is not sure about the Russian and Chinese positions with regards to full compliance because both countries would love to see a diminishing US influence over Iran, which was enabled by Trump’s withdrawal from the nuclear deal. 

But Bryza, a man who knows how to negotiate being a former diplomat, also describes the outcome of negotiations as “unpredictable” because of the changing environment of international politics. “How they are carried” is crucial to the outcome, he says. 

“It’s possible that if the talks get going, that could be positive signs that come from one side or another. I personally think that there are ways the Biden administration could find to accommodate Iran’s demands that sanctions be lifted before the agreement comes back to place,” the former diplomat says. 

However, Americans will not lift sanctions as long as Iranians do not enter a negotiation process. “That’s politically impossible in Washington.” 

Does no deal mean war?

Biden and other top officials have already reiterated that a nuclear Iran will not be tolerated by Washington. 

But does that mean war? It may be so, according to some recent remarks coming from top US officials like Brett McGurk and Ned Price. 

“We are still hopeful that diplomacy can find a way. But if it cannot find a way, we are prepared to use other options,” said McGurk,the US National Security Council’s coordinator for the Middle East and North Africa, on the weekend during a Gulf meeting.  

“There is no question, we are not going to allow Iran to get a nuclear weapon, period,” McGurk added. He also believes that “When it comes to military force to prevent a country from obtaining a nuclear weapon, that is a very achievable objective.” 

Price, the State Department spokesman, also talked about the use of “other means”,appearing to echo McGurk’s tough talk, “if the Iranians through their actions or through their inactions demonstrate or suggest that they lack that good faith, that they lack that clarity of purpose.” 

“Just an empty word, we have heard this for as long as I can remember. They, like every other part of this negotiation, are very much aware that neither the US nor its allies in the region can begin a military operation against Iran. These empty words are just playing in the game of those who are not looking for an actual agreement,” Karimkhan says. 

“Iran was and will always be ready for defending itself against any kind of military engagement with anyone in or outside the region,” she adds. 

Bryza also finds that tough talk “unwise” and “vintage language out of the Trump administration that’s not going to work well in Tehran, particularly with this hardline government.” 

The more Washington talks about the military option publicly, the more Tehran will respond with emotional responses to those talks, according to Bryza. 

He advises his colleagues in Washington to conduct “diplomacy behind-the-scenes” which could start a partial compliance process, aiming to reach a full compliance step by step.