The Sixth Seal Is Long Overdue (Revelation 6:12)

ON THE MAP; Exploring the Fault Where the Next Big One May Be Waiting


Published: March 25, 2001

Alexander Gates, a geology professor at Rutgers-Newark, is co-author of ”The Encyclopedia of Earthquakes and Volcanoes,” which will be published by Facts on File in July. He has been leading a four-year effort to remap an area known as the Sloatsburg Quadrangle, a 5-by-7-mile tract near Mahwah that crosses into New York State. The Ramapo Fault, which runs through it, was responsible for a big earthquake in 1884, and Dr. Gates warns that a recurrence is overdue. He recently talked about his findings.

Q. What have you found?

A. We’re basically looking at a lot more rock, and we’re looking at the fracturing and jointing in the bedrock and putting it on the maps. Any break in the rock is a fracture. If it has movement, then it’s a fault. There are a lot of faults that are offshoots of the Ramapo. Basically when there are faults, it means you had an earthquake that made it. So there was a lot of earthquake activity to produce these features. We are basically not in a period of earthquake activity along the Ramapo Fault now, but we can see that about six or seven times in history, about 250 million years ago, it had major earthquake activity. And because it’s such a fundamental zone of weakness, anytime anything happens, the Ramapo Fault goes.

Q. Where is the Ramapo Fault?

 A. The fault line is in western New Jersey and goes through a good chunk of the state, all the way down to Flemington. It goes right along where they put in the new 287. It continues northeast across the Hudson River right under the Indian Point power plant up into Westchester County. There are a lot of earthquakes rumbling around it every year, but not a big one for a while.

Q. Did you find anything that surprised you?

A. I found a lot of faults, splays that offshoot from the Ramapo that go 5 to 10 miles away from the fault. I have looked at the Ramapo Fault in other places too. I have seen splays 5 to 10 miles up into the Hudson Highlands. And you can see them right along the roadsides on 287. There’s been a lot of damage to those rocks, and obviously it was produced by fault activities. All of these faults have earthquake potential.

Q. Describe the 1884 earthquake.

A. It was in the northern part of the state near the Sloatsburg area. They didn’t have precise ways of describing the location then. There was lots of damage. Chimneys toppled over. But in 1884, it was a farming community, and there were not many people to be injured. Nobody appears to have written an account of the numbers who were injured.

Q. What lessons we can learn from previous earthquakes?

A. In 1960, the city of Agadir in Morocco had a 6.2 earthquake that killed 12,000 people, a third of the population, and injured a third more. I think it was because the city was unprepared.There had been an earthquake in the area 200 years before. But people discounted the possibility of a recurrence. Here in New Jersey, we should not make the same mistake. We should not forget that we had a 5.4 earthquake 117 years ago. The recurrence interval for an earthquake of that magnitude is every 50 years, and we are overdue. The Agadir was a 6.2, and a 5.4 to a 6.2 isn’t that big a jump.

Q. What are the dangers of a quake that size?

A. When you’re in a flat area in a wooden house it’s obviously not as dangerous, although it could cut off a gas line that could explode. There’s a real problem with infrastructure that is crumbling, like the bridges with crumbling cement.

There’s a real danger we could wind up with our water supplies and electricity cut off if a sizable earthquake goes off. The best thing is to have regular upkeep and keep up new building codes. The new buildings will be O.K. But there is a sense of complacency.


Babylon the Great Has Opened Door to Russian Nuke Strikes

A Sarmat intercontinental ballistic missile is test-launched by the Russian military at the Plesetsk cosmodrome in Arkhangelsk region, Russia, in this still image taken from a video released on April 20, 2022. (Russian Defence Ministry/Handout via Reuters)

Biden Has Opened Door to Russian Nuke Strikes

Originally published by Gatestone Institute


“If Russia crosses this line, there will be catastrophic consequences for Russia,” National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan told NBC’s “Meet the Press” on the 25th of this month, referring to threats to use nuclear weapons. “The United States will respond decisively.”

Sullivan was responding to, among other things, a warning Russian President Vladimir Putin delivered in a televised address on Sept. 21. “I want like to remind those who make such statements regarding Russia that our country has different types of weapons as well, and some of them are more modern than the weapons NATO countries have,” the Russian leader said. “In the event of a threat to the territorial integrity of our country and to defend Russia and our people, we will certainly make use of all weapon systems available to us.”

“This is not a bluff,” he added.

“The idea of nuclear conflict, once unthinkable, has become a subject of debate,” said U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres the following day at a Security Council session on Ukraine. “This in itself is totally unacceptable.”

Acceptable or not, the use of nuclear weapons is fast becoming likely. The world can thank President Joe Biden for helping create the conditions for history’s first total war.

Putin’s threat to use nukes—presumably against Ukraine but perhaps others as well—was made at the time he announced a military mobilization, Russia’s first since World War II.

The Russian leader has made a series of implicit and explicit nuclear threats this year. On Feb. 27, for instance, he put his nuclear forces on high alert. On March 1, he sortied his ballistic missile submarines and land-based mobile missile launchers in what was called a “drill.”

Russia’s nuclear doctrine is called “escalate to deescalate” or, more appropriately, “escalate to win,” which means threatening or using nukes early in a conventional conflict.

Even if Putin is now bluffing—most analysts think he is—he is getting what he wants with threats. Biden, for instance, has been cautious and even timid in providing military assistance to a beleaguered Ukraine. Putin has obviously noticed, which is the reason he has been making more such threats.

“A nuclear war cannot be won,” Biden stated in his Sept. 21 U.N. General Assembly speech, but that applause line is not necessarily true.

With nuclear-tipped cruise missiles, the Russian leader could, in a moment, reverse his fortunes by incinerating Ukraine’s cities and large concentrations of military assets, eventually allowing Russia to annex the entire country.

Could Putin get away with such a bold move? The main deterrent to a first strike with tactical nuclear weapons is a threatened second strike with nukes. At this time, the United States has tactical nuclear weapons in Europe, in the form of “gravity bombs” delivered by F-16 and F-35 jets.

These bombs, as destructive as they are, are not, as a practical matter, much of a deterrent to the first use of tactical nukes. They can be destroyed on the ground, and any that survive have to be flown long distances through contested airspace to reach targets. In short, Putin is unlikely to be afraid of America’s bombs.

That leaves the president of the United States with only one other nuclear threat for deterrence purposes: the launch of intercontinental ballistic missiles. ICBMs carrying nuclear warheads can completely destroy Russia, but Putin knows Biden will never make good on any threat to use these weapons in this situation. Putin knows that Biden knows that Putin can obliterate the United States in a second strike with his ICBMs.

When Sullivan says “catastrophic,” Putin undoubtedly thinks “hollow.” American threats to use its most destructive weapons are simply not credible in this situation.

Why, then, doesn’t the United States have what it needs at this crucial moment: nuclear-tipped cruise missiles like Putin’s? The arms-control community, arguing that such low-yield weapons would make nuclear war more likely, persuaded American presidents not to build them. President Trump authorized their development, but Biden cancelled the program.

Unfortunately, arms-control advocates got it backwards. As evident from today’s developments, America lacking low-yield nuclear warheads on cruise missiles is making nuclear war more likely, not less.

So, what does the arms-control community now recommend?

“The United States will need to reduce its nuclear arsenal to encourage Russia to do the same,” wrote Tom Collina and Angela Kellett on the 21st of this month on the Defense One site.

Entice Russia into disarmament? Been there. Tried that. Failed miserably.

“In 2010, we killed the Navy nuclear-armed cruise missile and Russia responded by confirming they were indeed building 32 new strategic nuclear systems of which 90 percent are now complete,” the Hudson Institute’s Peter Huessy tells Gatestone. “The comparable Chinese number is 28.”

Nonetheless, Collina and Kellett urge the Biden administration to not let Putin’s war prevent negotiations with Putin to limit nuclear weapons. “If we want to prevent Russia from using its nuclear weapons to enable more aggression against weaker states, we must find a way to work with Moscow to reduce its nuclear arsenal,” write the pair in “War Is No Reason to Put Arms-Control Negotiations on Hold,” their Defense One article.

Is it possible to work with Putin at this time?

Even if we can put aside the morality of talking to a genocidal mass murderer—we cannot—it is reckless to believe Putin might actually honor arms-control agreements when he has continually violated them with impunity.

Moreover, it is bad enough to argue for disarmament in peacetime, but it is the height of folly to do so during war—and when China and North Korea are making first-strike nuclear threats of their own.

America’s arms-control advocates have always been naïve. Now, they are delusional.

Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.

Gordon G. Chang is a distinguished senior fellow at the Gatestone Institute, a member of its Advisory Board, and the author of “The Coming Collapse of China.”

The Trials and Tribulations Continue: Jeremiah 23

Ian continues to batter Central Florida as residents cope with record flooding

Updated: 1:42 PM EDT Sep 29, 2022Infinite Scroll EnabledPlay Video


Hurricane Ian was downgraded to a tropical storm as of the 5 a.m. National Hurricane Center advisory as Central Florida experienced massive amounts of rain.

Ian came ashore Wednesday afternoon near Cayo Costa, Florida, with winds of 150 mph and began a punishing march northeastward across the state.

As of the 11 a.m. advisory, Ian was moving northeast at 8 mph and winds had slowed to 70 mph. It was located 25 miles north-northeast of Cape Canaveral and 285 miles south of Charleston, South Carolina.

“A turn toward the north is expected late today, followed by a turn toward the north-northwest with an increase in forward speed Friday night. On the forecast track, Ian will approach the coast of South Carolina on Friday. The center will move farther inland across the Carolinas Friday night and Saturday. Maximum sustained winds have increased to near 70 mph with higher gusts. Ian is expected to become a hurricane again this evening and make landfall as a hurricane on Friday, with rapid weakening forecast after landfall,” the National Hurricane Center said.

Iran Protests: At Least 76 Killed by Security Forces Since September 16, NGO Confirms

A 10-year-old girl is carried away after being shot in the head in Bukan, Kurdistan province, last Monday

SEPTEMBER 27, 2022


A 10-year-old girl is carried away after being shot in the head in Bukan, Kurdistan province, last Monday

At least 76 people have now been confirmed to have been killed by security forces since nationwide protests broke out in Iran on September 16.

In its latest report on Monday, the Norway-based NGO Iran Human Rights said it had verified video footage showing officers firing live ammunition directly at crowds in many cities.

The highest death toll so far continues to be recorded in the northern provinces of Gilan and Mazandaran, totalling 35. This is followed by West Azerbaijan province with 11, and Kurdistan and Kermanshah with six each.

Of the deaths so far recorded by Iran Human Rights, six were women and four were children aged under 18, who have been present in large numbers at many of the protests.

The NGO has acknowledged that the true number of people killed could be far higher. Many families are threatened with legal reprisal if they speak out, and government-imposed internet disruption continues to delay reporting.

The Kurdish human rights organization Hengaw puts the number of dead in Kurdistan province alone at 18, and the number of injured at close to 900.

The number of people arrested is impossible to quantify but expected to run into thousands. Just in Mazandaran, the public prosecutor in the provincial capital of Sari announced on Sunday that 450 people were in custody.

Mahmood Amiry-Moghaddam, the director of Iran Human Rights, said: “The risk of torture and ill-treatment of protesters is serious, and the use of live ammunition against protesters is an international crime.

“The world must defend the Iranian people’s demands for their fundamental rights.”

IranWire’s Persian service is keeping a live record of the names, and pictures where available, of all those independently confirmed to have been killed so far. The vast majority are young people.

Nuclear attack in Ukraine would spark ‘devastating’ European Horn response

A Ukrainian flag waves on a street of the recently liberated village of Vysokopillya in the Kherson region
A Ukrainian flag waves on a street of the recently liberated village of Vysokopillya, Kherson region. Poland’s foreign minister has warned any use of nuclear weapons by Russia should prompt a ‘devastating’ Nato response. Photograph: Genya Savilov/AFP/Getty Images

Nuclear attack in Ukraine should spark ‘devastating’ Nato response, says Poland

Zbigniew Rau rules out a nuclear reprisal but says the alliance is sending a clear message to Russia

Julian Borger in WashingtonTue 27 Sep 2022 20.53 EDT

Poland’s foreign minister, Zbigniew Rau, has said Nato’s response to any use of nuclear weapons in Ukraine should be non-nuclear but “devastating”.

Speaking on a visit to Washington, Rau said the alliance was in the process of delivering that message to Moscow.

The Russian military debacle in Ukraine, where its forces are being pushed back in the east of the country, has increased concerns that a desperate Vladimir Putin could resort to using a nuclear weapon, possibly a lower-yield tactical warhead, in a bid to shock Ukraine into halting its resistance to his invasion.

“To the best of our knowledge, Putin is threatening to use tactical nuclear weapons on Ukrainian soil, not to attack Nato, which means that Nato should respond in a conventional way,” Rau told the NBC News program Meet the Press NOW. “But the response should be devastating. And I suppose this is the clear message that the Nato alliance is sending to Russia right now.”

The US national security adviser, Jake Sullivan, warned on Sunday that any nuclear use by the Kremlin would have “catastrophic consequences for Russia”, which had been “spelled out” in private conversations with Russian officials.

The Russian military has expanded conscription with the official aim of sending 300,000 more soldiers into Ukraine, though there are reports the real goal is considerably more. The mobilisation has triggered unrest and an exodus across Russia’s borders, particularly of draft-age men.

“Obviously, President Putin is losing the war in Ukraine,” Rau said. “So his reaction to it is to launch mobilisation. But the mobilisation doesn’t seem to help him win the war.”

The Polish foreign minister said Ukraine’s armed forces had already defeated Russia’s professional soldiers, so the new conscripts who were “poorly trained and poorly equipped” were unlikely to change the course of the war.

Rau said that if the mobilisation did lead to a breakthrough, it would be in Russian public opinion.

“So far, the war was popular, at least for the majority of the Russian population, up to 80%,” he said. “And now, every Russian family will have to take their own position towards the war, knowing that their loved ones can be sent there and they can be killed there.”

During his trip to Washington, Rau is not meeting any members of the Biden administration, but will see congressional leaders, Sullivan’s predecessor as national security adviser, John Bolton, and will visit a new museum in the US capital dedicated to the victims of communism.

The Russian Horn Threatens Nuclear War: Revelation 16


Russia Threatens Nuclear Weapons Use

What Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said back in New York corroborates that the Russian snap decision to illegally grab Ukrainian territories was made to expand its nuclear blackmail. Russia has repeatedly waved the threat of using nuclear force to have the upper hand in its war in Ukraine. This is why the Kremlin decided to boost its credibility.

On September 24, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told a UN press conference in New York that all Russian laws and doctrines, including the nuclear doctrine, will apply to the territories of Ukraine that are to join Russia through sham referenda. For the Kremlin, the thing is so obvious that it needs no reminder. And yet, the Russian diplomat reminded it anyway. Russia’s sham referenda leading to the annexation of large swaths of Ukrainian territory consolidate the Kremlin’s nuclear narrative. The Kremlin believes its threats might scare off Ukraine and its Western allies. Commenting on statements regarding the inevitable response of the USA if the occupied territories “join” Russia, Lavrov said, “I would not make any gloomy predictions here.” As Lavrov also pointed out, “by providing Kyiv with weapons, the USA, the European Union and NATO cannot claim to have a neutral status, that is, they cannot claim that they are not taking part in the conflict.” Russia has once again threatened Western countries with nuclear weapons, now amid Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine. This is how Lavrov’s statement should be interpreted as, according to the chief Russian diplomat, “by providing Kyiv with weapons, the United States cannot claim that it is neutral and is not taking part in the conflict.” So other Western countries that follow Washington’s example “take part in the conflict,” as Moscow has put it. Implicitly, they could also become Moscow’s target. Vladimir Putin mentioned the use of a nuclear weapon against Ukraine amid the “referenda” in the same national address he ordered a troop mobilization. The authorities in Kyiv have strongly rejected Russian threats of nuclear retaliation. The Kremlin’s statements on the possible use of nuclear weapons are “absolutely unacceptable” and Kyiv will not give into it, Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said in a statement. As reported, Mykhailo Podolyak, an adviser to the head of the Ukrainian President’s Office, said that the nuclear-weapon states should warn the Russian Federation about the possible consequences of the decision to use nuclear weapons, since the global doctrine of deterrence prohibits their use for an attack. Putin insists that “it is no bluff” that Russia will use nukes to defend its territory, but this indeed is a bluff. What could become understandable for the Kremlin is that annexing some Ukrainian territories is unlikely to change anything. As Moscow now claims Ukraine’s Donbas and the country’s south have been incorporated into Russia, any Ukrainian military efforts there could trigger a nuclear response. This is a double false claim. According to an updated Russian nuclear doctrine, nuclear weapons could be used by Russia in response to the use of nuclear and other types of weapons of mass destruction against it or its allies, and also in case of aggression against Russia with the use of conventional weapons when the very existence of the Russian Federation is at risk. But Ukraine’s defensive campaign is unlikely to pose a threat to Russia. In addition, Ukraine has targeted Russian military facilities in Crimea for two months; Moscow unlawfully annexed the peninsula back in 2014. So why would grabbing new territories provoke a nuclear strike only now? However, what it seems is that Putin’s strategy has seen partial success. “The EU must take Vladimir Putin’s threats he could use nuclear weapons in the conflict in Ukraine seriously,” the EU foreign policy chief has said. “When people say it is not a bluff, you have to take them seriously,” Borrell added. U.S. National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan and U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken warned Russia of catastrophic consequences if it uses nuclear weapons as part of the Ukraine invasion. Probably it would be a conventional attack that could at least devastate Russian forces in Ukraine.