New York Earthquake: City of the Sixth Seal (Revelation 6:12)

New York earthquake: City at risk of ‚dangerous shaking from far away‘
Joshua Nevett
Published 30th April 2018
SOME of New York City’s tallest skyscrapers are at risk of being shaken by seismic waves triggered by powerful earthquakes from miles outside the city, a natural disaster expert has warned.
Researchers believe that a powerful earthquake, magnitude 5 or greater, could cause significant damage to large swathes of NYC, a densely populated area dominated by tall buildings.
A series of large fault lines that run underneath NYC’s five boroughs, Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, The Bronx and Staten Island, are capable of triggering large earthquakes.
Some experts have suggested that NYC is susceptible to at least a magnitude 5 earthquake once every 100 years.
The last major earthquake measuring over magnitude 5.0 struck NYC in 1884 – meaning another one of equal size is “overdue” by 34 years, according their prediction model.
Natural disaster researcher Simon Day, of University College London, agrees with the conclusion that NYC may be more at risk from earthquakes than is usually thought.
EARTHQUAKE RISK: New York is susceptible to seismic shaking from far-away tremors
But the idea of NYC being “overdue” for an earthquake is “invalid”, not least because the “very large number of faults” in the city have individually low rates of activity, he said.
The model that predicts strong earthquakes based on timescale and stress build-up on a given fault has been “discredited”, he said.
What scientists should be focusing on, he said, is the threat of large and potentially destructive earthquakes from “much greater distances”.
The dangerous effects of powerful earthquakes from further away should be an “important feature” of any seismic risk assessment of NYC, Dr Day said.

THE BIG APPLE: An aerial view of Lower Manhattan at dusk in New York City

RISK: A seismic hazard map of New York produced by USGS
“New York is susceptible to seismic shaking from earthquakes at much greater distances” Dr Simon Day, natural disaster researcher
This is because the bedrock underneath parts of NYC, including Long Island and Staten Island, cannot effectively absorb the seismic waves produced by earthquakes.
“An important feature of the central and eastern United States is, because the crust there is old and cold, and contains few recent fractures that can absorb seismic waves, the rate of seismic reduction is low.
Central regions of NYC, including Manhattan, are built upon solid granite bedrock; therefore the amplification of seismic waves that can shake buildings is low.
But more peripheral areas, such as Staten Island and Long Island, are formed by weak sediments, meaning seismic hazard in these areas is “very likely to be higher”, Dr Day said.
“Thus, like other cities in the eastern US, New York is susceptible to seismic shaking from earthquakes at much greater distances than is the case for cities on plate boundaries such as Tokyo or San Francisco, where the crustal rocks are more fractured and absorb seismic waves more efficiently over long distances,” Dr Day said.
In the event of a large earthquake, dozens of skyscrapers, including Chrysler Building, the Woolworth Building and 40 Wall Street, could be at risk of shaking.
“The felt shaking in New York from the Virginia earthquake in 2011 is one example,” Dr Day said.
On that occasion, a magnitude 5.8 earthquake centered 340 miles south of New York sent thousands of people running out of swaying office buildings.

FISSURES: Fault lines in New York City have low rates of activity, Dr Day said
NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg said the city was “lucky to avoid any major harm” as a result of the quake, whose epicenter was near Louisa, Virginia, about 40 miles from Richmond.
“But an even more impressive one is the felt shaking from the 1811-1812 New Madrid earthquakes in the central Mississippi valley, which was felt in many places across a region, including cities as far apart as Detroit, Washington DC and New Orleans, and in a few places even further afield including,” Dr Day added.
“So, if one was to attempt to do a proper seismic hazard assessment for NYC, one would have to include potential earthquake sources over a wide region, including at least the Appalachian mountains to the southwest and the St Lawrence valley to the north and east.”

Iran nuclear deal means bloodbath in Middle East: Revelation 16

nuclear deal more violent

Iran nuclear deal means bloodbath in Middle East: Israeli PM

It looks like Israel does not want Iran Nuclear Deal to be successful as lifting of sanctions would result in economic growth in Iran.


21 February 2022

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said on Sunday that a U.S.-Iranian deal taking shape to revive Iran’s 2015 nuclear agreement with world powers is weaker than the original arrangement and would lead to a more violent Middle East.

The 2015 deal limited Iran’s enrichment of uranium to make it harder for Tehran to develop material for nuclear weapons, in return for a lifting of international sanctions against Tehran.

But it has eroded since 2018 when then-President Donald Trump withdrew the United States and reimposed far-reaching sanctions on Iran.

“The emerging deal, as it seems, is highly likely to create a more violent, more volatile Middle East,” Bennett said in a speech in Jerusalem to Jewish American leaders.

The aim of the nuclear talks in Vienna is to return to the original bargain of lifting sanctions against Iran in exchange for restrictions on its nuclear activities that extend the time it would need to produce enough enriched uranium for an atomic bomb if it chose to.

Iran says its nuclear ambitions are peaceful.

Bennett said the biggest problem in current negotiations was the possibility of the shorter timeline – two and a half years – before Iran could freely operate advanced centrifuges, since the original timeline may not be extended.

“Israel will not accept Iran as a nuclear threshold state,” he said, reiterating a long-standing position, at the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. “Israel will always maintain its freedom of action to defend itself.”

Why All the Horns Will Go Nuclear: Daniel 7

Why Ukraine gave up its nuclear weapons — and what that means in an invasion by Russia

February 21, 20225:16 PM ET


Ukrainian Military Forces servicemen walk past a metal plate that reads “caution mines” on the front line with Russia-backed separatists.

Anatolii Stepanov/AFP via Getty Images

Three decades ago, the newly independent country of Ukraine was briefly the third-largest nuclear power in the world.

Thousands of nuclear arms had been left on Ukrainian soil by Moscow after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. But in the years that followed, Ukraine made the decision to completely denuclearize.

In exchange, the U.S., the U.K. and Russia would guarantee Ukraine’s security in a 1994 agreement known as the Budapest Memorandum.

Now, that agreement is front and center again.

Mariana Budjeryn of Harvard University spoke with All Things Considered about the legacy of the Budapest Memorandum and its impact today.

This interview has been edited for length and clarity.

On whether Ukraine foresaw the impact of denuclearizing

It is hard to estimate whether Ukrainians would foresee the impact.

It is clear that Ukrainians knew they weren’t getting the exactly legally binding, really robust security guarantees they sought.

But they were told at the time that the United States and Western powers — so certainly at least the United States and Great Britain — take their political commitments really seriously. This is a document signed at the highest level by the heads of state. So the implication was Ukraine would not be left to stand alone and face a threat should it come under one.

And I think perhaps there was even a certain sense of complacency on the Ukrainian part after signing this agreement to say, “Look, we have these guarantees that were signed,” because incidentally, into Ukrainian and Russian, this was translated as a guarantee, not as an assurance.

So they had this faith that the West would stand by them, or certainly the United States, the signatories, and Great Britain, would stand up for Ukraine should it come under threat. Although, the precise way was not really proscribed in the memorandum.

On whether Russia has respected the memorandum

Russia just glibly violated it.

And there’s a mechanism of consultations that is provided for in the memorandum should any issues arise, and it was mobilized for the first time on March 4, 2014.

So there was a meeting of the signatories of the memorandum that was called by Ukraine and it did take place in Paris. And the foreign minister of the Russian Federation, Sergey Lavrov, who was in Paris at the time, simply did not show up. So he wouldn’t even come to the meeting in connection with the memorandum.

[Russia argues that it] signed it with a different government, not with this “illegitimate” one. But that, of course, does not stand to any international legal kind of criteria. You don’t sign agreements with the government, you sign it with the country.

On whether Ukrainians regret nuclear disarmament

Some Ukrainians regret that Ukraine gave up its nuclear weapons, but Mariana Budjeryn says the country made the right decision at the time.

STR/AFP via Getty Images

There certainly is a good measure of regret, and some of it is poorly informed. It would have cost Ukraine quite a bit, both economically and in terms of international political repercussions, to hold on to these arms. So it would not have been an easy decision.

But in public sphere these more simple narratives take hold. The narrative in Ukraine, publicly is: We had the world’s third-largest nuclear arsenal, we gave it up for this signed piece of paper, and look what happened.

And it really doesn’t look good for the international non-proliferation regime. Because if you have a country that disarms and then becomes a target of such a threat and a victim of such a threat at the hands of a nuclear-armed country, it just sends a really wrong signal to other countries that might want to pursue nuclear weapons.

On the importance of Ukraine’s nuclear history today

I would say, after having researched this topic for nearly a decade, Ukraine did the right thing at the time. It did the right thing by itself, and also by the international community. It reduced the overall number of nuclear weapons in the world and that makes everyone safer.

Now, looking at this history, however, the guarantors — the signatories of the Budapest Memorandum especially but also the international community more broadly — needs to react in the way as to not make Ukraine doubt in the rightness of that decision.

This show of solidarity that we’ve recently seen, in this last kind of spur of tensions, goes a really long way to convince both Ukrainian leadership but also the public that even though we gave up these nuclear weapons, or nuclear option, the world still stands by us. And we will not face this aggression alone.

The South Korean Nuclear Horn Will Rise: Daniel 7

South Koreans overwhelmingly want nuclear weapons to confront China and North Korea, poll finds

By Michelle Ye Hee Lee

Yesterday at 8:00 p.m. EST

TOKYO — There has long been a desire among South Koreans for domestic nuclear weapons capability, but a poll shows that in the face of North Korea’s nuclear ambitions and an assertive China, that view has ballooned to more than 70 percent of the population — most of whom want to go nuclear even when the potential drawbacks are explained.

The poll, released Tuesday by the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, found robust support for nuclear weapons in South Korea: South Koreans want nuclear weapons even when they feel confident about the country’s alliance with the United States and about the strength of their own military. And those who support nuclear weapons now see a level of prestige associated with them.

South Korea is preparing to elect a new president on March 9 in a neck-and-neck race, and the debate over nuclear armament was reignited during the fall primary among conservative candidates as a potential party platform idea. The poll shows that domestic support for nuclear weapons is squarely in the mainstream view — and that the incoming president may need to contend with it.

Throughout much of the Cold War, the United States had stationed nuclear-armed weapons in South Korea. Then, in 1991, President George H.W. Bush initiated the withdrawal of all tactical nuclear weapons deployed abroad. South Korea remains under the protection of the U.S. nuclear umbrella, which guarantees that the United States would use its nuclear weapons to protect South Korea if needed.

The return of tactical nuclear armament has seemed out of reach for many years, but the debate has cropped up repeatedly. In 2016, then-South Korean President Park Geun-hye reportedly asked the United States to redeploy the tactical weapons but was denied. Currently, South Korea has ambitions for a nuclear-powered submarine.

The poll found that 71 percent of South Koreans supported nuclear weapons — slightly higher than in previous findings. Researchers sought to dig deeper to understand how intensely South Koreans feel about their support and found it has considerable staying power.

For example, when asked to choose between a domestic nuclear weapons program and the stationing of U.S. nuclear weapons in South Korea, similar to that of the past, the public overwhelmingly preferred an independent arsenal, underscoring the desire among South Koreans for greater autonomy over how and when nuclear weapons would be deployed on their behalf.

Researchers also found that, contrary to conventional thinking among security analysts, South Koreans’ support for nuclear weapons remained strong even when they felt confident in the U.S. alliance.

Experts say the findings suggest that U.S. policymakers need to have a deeper understanding of South Koreans’ views.

“We can’t just ignore this. We can’t treat it as, ‘the public is emotional on these issues,’ ” said Toby Dalton, co-director and senior fellow at the Carnegie Endowment’s Nuclear Policy Program and a co-author of the report.

Pronuclear South Koreans saw armament as a way to increase the country’s prestige in the international community. When presented with potential consequences for going nuclear — such as international sanctions or a U.S. troop withdrawal from South Korea — pronuclear respondents largely remained supportive.

“They want to take that next step on the international stage,” said Karl Friedhoff, a fellow in public opinion and Asia policy at the Chicago Council on Global Affairs and a polling expert based in South Korea who co-wrote the report. “The people who support weapons basically support them no matter what.”

South Koreans’ desire for nuclear weapons is often viewed as a way to counter threats from North Korea, a nuclear-armed state that is now working to expand and diversify its arsenal. But the poll found that South Koreans increasingly view China as a long-term threat to the country. They also view Japan as less of a military threat than their two nuclear neighbors.

A majority of South Koreans believe it is unlikely that North Korea will denuclearize, which has also hardened their desire for a nuclear program, said Lami Kim, a co-author of the report and a national security professor at the U.S. Army War College.

“Some may have held out hope during the last diplomatic engagement with the North in 2018 and 2019, but after that failed, most feel their skepticism toward North Korea’s denuclearization has been vindicated,” she said.

S. Paul Choi, principal at the Seoul-based consultancy StratWays Group and a former South Korean military officer who was not involved in the research, warned against reading too much into hypothetical questions about alliance matters and consequences, given the complexities of the issue and the fact that wording choices can make a big difference across polls.

But Choi said a robust debate on the topic is overdue, especially given that a majority of South Koreans have expressed support for a domestic nuclear weapons program for more than a decade.

“South Koreans, the South Korean public, are very aware of the volatile regional security environment in which we live, and the nuclear North Korea threat that we face,” Choi said. “With that understanding, they’re increasingly supportive, or open to, a domestic nuclear program but believe in pursuing that with a strong U.S.-ROK alliance,” he said using the abbreviation for South Korea’s official name.

“For me, as a South Korean, if we didn’t have this debate, that would be worrisome. Given the environment in which we live, we need to examine, review and consider all options and decide which one supports, most effectively, our security interests,” Choi said.

How the Antichrist’s rise in Iraq will impact Iran in Syria

How Sadr’s rise in Iraq will impact Iran in Syria


Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei meets Iraqi Shiite cleric and politician Muqtada Al-Sadr in Tehran on Sept. 21, 2019. (Photo via Iran’s supreme leader’s website)

Hamidreza Azizi

Four months after Iraq’s parliamentary elections, Shiite cleric and politician Muqtada Al-Sadr is getting closer to his goal of forming a “national majority” government and thereby marginalizing rival Shiite factions. Iran is concerned about these developments, which could significantly undermine the role and influence of its Iraqi allies. Tehran has tried hard—but apparently failed—to obstruct the formation of Sadr’s envisioned majority government. Iranian efforts to persuade the Iraqi leader to come to terms with the pro-Iran groups operating under the banner of the Shiite Coordination Framework have also been fruitless.

The commander of Iran’s extraterritorial Quds Force traveled to Iraq on Feb. 8, the third time in just one month, to meet with Sadr and leaders of Iraq’s Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG). However, Brig. Gen. Esmail Qa’ani does not appear to have succeeded in changing Sadr’s attitude, who is apparently ready to work with all Coordination Framework figures—except his longtime nemesis, former prime minister Nouri Al-Maliki (2006-14). Iran’s attempts to dissuade the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) from joining forces with Sadr and Iraq’s main Sunni blocs have not yielded results either.

As such, the post-election situation—and especially Sadr’s upper hand in forming the next government—may present Iran with several serious challenges. The outcome of these contestations could affect the Islamic Republic’s future role in Iraq. Importantly, it must be considered that the potential implications of these ongoing shifts will not remain limited to Iraq. Instead, Iran’s interests in Syria—Iraq’s neighbor to the west—will also likely be affected by the current developments.

Political weakening of Iran’s allies

To begin with, Sadr’s desire to curb pro-Iran armed groups could limit their maneuvering space not only in Iraq, but also in their so-far routine engagement in foreign conflicts. Both before and after the Oct. 2021 Iraqi parliamentary elections, Sadr has stressed that arms should be only in the hands of the state—even as he himself commands Saraya Al-Salam. In the same vein, he has also called for the dissolution of various Shiite armed groups and their integration into the official state structures.

Those armed groups have also been operating in a regional context for years. Since the start of the Syrian conflict in 2011, a number of Iraqi factions—along with Iran and the Lebanese Hezbollah—have supported Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad in his war against armed opposition and terrorist groups. Affiliates of Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Units (PMU) have significantly contributed to consolidating Iranian control over the Iraqi-Syrian border, particularly in Deir Al-Zor Governorate in eastern Syria.

If the next Iraqi government opts for constraining Shiite armed groups, Iran will likely experience difficulties in maintaining control over the strategic border area. The significance of the latter should not be underestimated; the region is considered vital for the movement of arms, equipment, and fighters from Iraq to Syria and vice versa. Sadr has already stated that he opposes the foreign activities of Iraqi groups, arguing that they may risk pulling Iraq into broader regional conflicts.

Even if, in the end, a compromise is reached between Sadr and the Coordination Framework—under which some members of the Shiite umbrella body join the new government—their position will still be very fragile. If Maliki is left out—considering that his State of Law bloc performed best among the Coordination Framework members—the pro-Iran factions would be the weaker party in a government that includes Sadr and his new Kurdish and Sunni Arab partners. For this reason, any potential coalition between Sadr and the Coordination Framework will be highly fragile and prone to an eventual breakup. A fragmented Coordination Framework would in turn likely lose its current role and practical relevance.

Russia is Ready to Nuke Ukraine: Daniel 7

Belarus on Verge of Pointing Russian Nuclear Weapons at Ukraine, NATO

By CALEB LARSON, Special to the Sun | February 20, 2022

A referendum in Belarus this week will bind the country more firmly to Russia and ensure President Lukashenko’s reign for the foreseeable future, barring any unforeseen circumstances in a country where elections are neither free nor fair.

Less noticeably, the referendum will also provide Russia the legal framework to station nuclear weapons on Belarusian soil, resulting in one of the most significant reshufflings of nuclear weapons in Europe since the collapse of the Soviet Union.

The referendum comes at a precarious time for Mr. Lukashenko, dubbed by the American and European press as Europe’s last dictator — a sobriquet that he seems to relish.

The Belarusian strongman has walked a fine line between Moscow and Brussels since his succession to the presidency in 1994.

Waffling between closer ties with Europe and submission to Russia, Mr. Lukashenko played both sides off each other and managed to retain a degree of independence from the Kremlin while also courting the European Union.

Recently, however, Mr. Lukashenko has become a thorn in President Putin’s flesh, executing an erratic and unhinged foreign policy. It seems Mr. Lukashenko must now pay the Russian piper.

The director of strategy, technology, and arms control for the International Institute for Strategic Studies, William Alberque, explained to The New York Sun that “a series of crises are raging in Belarus.”

These include widespread protests over Belarus’s fraudulent 2020 presidential election, soaring COVID-19 case numbers and deaths, last year’s refugee crisis on the Polish border, and the kidnapping of a Belarusian activist from a government-hijacked international flight.

These crises that Mr. Lukashenko himself manufactured are causing problems for his regime and are issues that “really put him in a weaker position, vis-à-vis Russia.”

Given the amount of support Mr. Lukashenko needed from Russia to extricate himself from his blunders and shore up his power at home, “the bill came due,” Mr. Alberque explained, adding: “I think Putin said to him bluntly, ‘Okay, I need some changes now.’”

These include a raft of amendments to the Belarusian constitution that would curb the parliament’s powers and provide a pathway for Mr. Lukashenko to rule indefinitely.

The weightiest provision would allow Belarus to host nuclear weapons on its soil for the first time since the mid-1990s.

Buried within the referendum’s text is a clause that would provide a legal pathway for a significant shakeup of Russia’s nuclear posture and bring nuclear-capable Russian aircraft and ballistic missiles to Ukraine’s and deeper into NATO territory.

Following the 1994 Budapest Memorandum, Belarus, Ukraine, and Kazakhstan surrendered nuclear weapons inherited from Soviet stockpiles back to Russia in exchange for security guarantees from the world’s other nuclear powers.

After the peaceful transfer of weapons, Belarus became a constitutionally mandated nuclear-free state that expressly forbade stationing nuclear weaponry within the country’s borders. Today, the Belarusian constitution reads: “The Republic of Belarus aims to make its territory a nuclear-free zone, and to make the state neutral.”

In a striking move, the referendum’s proposed text eliminates this clause entirely.

In its place, the proposed text reads, “The Republic of Belarus excludes military aggression against other states from its territory.”

Danger for both Ukraine and NATO lurks behind this seemingly peaceable façade.

Mr. Alberque explained that Russian and Belorussian military exercises often involve joint drills focused on repelling an outside aggressor “that’s being funded and controlled by the West.”

“Belarus is saying, ‘If we go to war with Ukraine, if we go to war with a NATO ally, it would not be because it’s a war of aggression, it’s a war of defense.’”

Although Kaliningrad, the country’s westernmost point, already hosts a great arsenal of Russian weaponry, the ability to station nuclear-capable bombers and ballistic missiles in Belarus would expand Russia’s nuclear-strike capabilities.

Soviet-era nuclear facilities in Belarus are “several hundred kilometers to Kaliningrad’s south,” Mr. Alberque explained, adding that if rearmed, Russia’s nuclear umbrella would move further into the Mediterranean and expand coverage over southeastern Europe.

Nuclear-capable aircraft and ICBMs in Belarus would “reduce launch time, detection ability, and defense capabilities,” and thus shorten Ukraine and NATO’s decision-making response window.

During the referendum’s public comment period, approval stood at an astoundingly suspicious 99.25 percent. Yet fair or fudged, the proposed provisions are likely to pass.

Mr. Alberque explained that in exchange for Mr. Lukashenko’s longevity, Russia and Belarus will need to be seen “as a bloc, two countries completely in an alliance, an alliance that will not diverge politically or militarily.”

In the future, he said Russia will be able to “ratchet up pressure in certain situations. And should they choose to, maintain pressure not just during this crisis with Ukraine, but whenever they want, for perpetuity.”


Image: President Lukashenko at Minsk, Belarus, January 28, 2022. Pavel Orlovsky/BelTA pool photo via AP

Australia is on the Verge of Nuking Up: Daniel 7

Chinese PLA-N Luyang-class guided missile destroyer
 Chinese PLA-N Luyang-class guided missile destroyer after Australian forces confirmed that on 17 February 2022, a royal Australian air force (RAAF) P-8A Poseidon detected a laser illuminating the aircraft from a Chinese Navy’s vessel. Photo: Australian Defence Force/AFP/Getty

 Home/Asia Pacific/Australian PM Terms China Laser Incident ‘Intimidation’


Australian PM Terms China Laser Incident ‘Intimidation’



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Australia’s prime minister accused China of an “act of intimidation” on Sunday after Canberra said a Chinese naval vessel shone a laser at one of the country’s defense aircraft.

The ship was one of two Chinese navy vessels sailing through waters off Australia’s northern coast on Thursday when it illuminated a surveillance aircraft in an incident that had “the potential to endanger lives,” the defense department said.

“I can see it no other way than an act of intimidation,” Prime Minister Scott Morrison said, terming the act “unwarranted and unprovoked.”

Australia’s Defense Minister Peter Dutton echoed his concerns, saying it was “a very aggressive act.”

“I think the Chinese government is hoping that nobody talks about these aggressive bullying acts,” Dutton told Sky News on Sunday.

According to the defense ministry, the ships were sailing east through the Arafura Sea, just north of Australia.

The Chinese government has not responded to the allegations from Australia.

China last faced accusations of targeting Australian aircraft using military-grade lasers in 2019, when Australian Defence Force helicopters were illuminated over the South China Sea.