If you’ve been watching the news over the last few days, you know that the past week has brought almost unprecedented political turmoil to the nation of Israel. And all of it a direct result of Israel’s recent pullout from the Gaza Strip.
The fallout from the withdrawal has actually toppled the Israeli government. The good news is that Israel is a strong democracy and can withstand this kind of turmoil. The bad news is that Israel has to endure this kind of turmoil in the first place. I believe that Israel’s hopes have been tragically founded on a failed policy of appeasement.
This policy of land-for-peace has led – and will continue to lead – her to greater dismay and grief. Allow me to set the stage:
First and foremost, the terrorist organizations led by Hamas have claimed it as a great victory of their jihad. This has enabled them to establish de facto control over Gaza.
Second, when the Israelis turned over the Rafah checkpoint on the border between Gaza and Egypt, the terrorists flooded in with new and more lethal weapons. Among them were anti-tank missiles and SAMs (surface-to-air missiles). The Egyptian soldiers who were supposed to prevent such things simply turned their heads.
Third, intelligence shows that al-Qaida has moved into the Sinai Peninsula in a big way. The terrorist organization immediately took advantage of the lack of an Israeli presence at the Sinai entrance to Gaza and the area south of that border. They have developed strongholds in some formidable terrain that makes combating them extremely difficult.
Fourth, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon suffered a crisis of confidence in the parliament that has caused him to leave the party he founded – the Likud – and form a new political party – Kadima. He asked Israel’s president to disband the Knesset and call an early election. Sharon’s new party is said to be more centrist than the hawkish Likud or the dovish Labor.
Close associates say that by forming a new political base and asking for an electoral mandate from Israeli voters, Sharon is seeking greater freedom to finalize a deal with the Palestinians. Following the dictates of the Roadmap to Peace, he is apparently prepared to offer the Palestinians independence in return for security. Prime Minister Sharon – nicknamed The Bulldozer – is so determined to see his plan through that Israel Today reports he is even considering proposing fundamental structural changes in the government that will limit the power of political parties. By the way, the Labor Party – which is the minority member of the current government – ousted its longtime leader Nobel Peace Prize winner Shimon Peres, and replaced him with a trade union organizer, Amir Peretz.
Fifth, though Sharon still enjoys a lead in the popularity polls, Peretz of the liberal Labor Party and Netanyahu, the new leader of the abandoned Likud Party are gaining ground. Benjamin Netanyahu appears to have a very good chance of becoming Sharon’s successor as prime minister. His keen understanding of the terrorist threat and how they gain power has attracted new converts to his bid for the prime ministership. Also, the average Israeli is beginning to realize that his predictions of the consequences of the Oslo Accords have all come true.
Sixth, the European Union has stepped into the Roadmap to Peace process in a big way. It is blatantly anti-Israel and is causing even greater insecurity for the Israelis. In a deal brokered by U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, the European Union is now “supervising” the all-important Rafah checkpoint.
Though the E.U. forces are supposed to be neutral enforcers, evidence shows that they are anything but neutral. Furthermore the European Union has expressed its “neutrality” by preparing a preliminary report for adoption that will refuse to any longer recognize Jerusalem as the united capital of Israel. It instead refers to the annexed Israeli settlements of East Jerusalem as “illegal settlements.”
The growing influence of the European Union in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has great prophetic implications. Prophecy demands that the coming revised Roman Empire – that will arise from the European Union – will play a key role in “resolving the conflict.” But it will only be a pseudo-peace that will ultimately lead to Armageddon.
Many crises have developed in Israel in the aftermath of the Gaza pull-out. All these developments have created a crisis of confidence with the Israeli people. I just led my 86th tour to Israel. During this time in Israel, I detected – for the first time – a genuine fear among average Israelis.
The one voice who showed strength and offered a detailed plan for getting Israel out of its dangerous position is that of Benjamin Netanyahu. I was privileged to conduct an exclusive interview with him, which hopefully I will be permitted to show on my IIB show on TBN. In my opinion, he is the one person who can lead Israel out of the disastrous consequences of the Oslo Accords.
In the United States, the calls for an immediate withdrawal from Iraq are growing despite the recent 403-to-3 vote in the Congress against it. I fear America is falling victim to the same “Oslo Illusion” that has cost Israel so dearly over the past decade.
The “Oslo Illusion” has thus far robbed Israel of most of its hard-won territories along the West Bank and Gaza.
It has de facto reduced Israel’s ability to defend itself from invasion. Radicals who have sworn they will destroy Israel are now filling the West Bank and Gaza strip. They have terrorized even their fellow Palestinians into submission.
On my recent 86th tour to Israel, I witnessed firsthand the dramatic changes that have taken place in the four years since I was last there. Israel is no longer the same place. Israel’s predicted date with destiny seems to be rapidly setting up. Israel, as predicted, is now moving into position to require outside help to defend itself. This sets the stage for the antichrist of Rome to come in and offer a guarantee of security that will prove to be disastrous.
(Incidentally, I am leading another tour to Israel with an option to Rome on March 7 to 17, with the optional Rome tour from March 17 to 21. If you want a life-changing experience, join me. I lecture at virtually all the sites. Space is limited. Call World Pilgrim Tours at (800) 438-8281 for information.)