...And these are the words that the Lord spoke concerning Israel and concerning Judah. For so said the Lord: A sound of quaking we have heard, fear, and there is no peace. Ask now and see whether a male gives birth. Why have I seen every man [with] his hands on his loins like a woman in confinement, and every face has turned to pallor? Ho! For that day is great, with none like it, and it is a time of distress for Jacob, through which he shall be saved.I can't lay my hands on the source at the moment, but I recall learning that there is a source which explains that in the absence of our complete teshuvah, we will be saved alternately through our suffering. This source explains the bolded pasuk above as a hint that it is through the trouble itself that we will be saved in that "time of distress" known as "Jacob's trouble."
And it shall be on that day, says the Lord of Hosts, [that] I will break his yoke off your neck, and I will break your thongs, and strangers shall no longer enslave them. And they shall serve the Lord their God and David their king, whom I will set up for them. (Yirmiyahu 30.4-9)
If we were paying attention, we would have seen this played out many times already with regard to the so-called "peace process" which actually has as its ultimate goal the elimination of Israel as a Jewish State.
The most glaring recent example is the "Khashoggi Affair" blowing up just at the moment the Trump Administration was prepared to launch their "Deal of the Century" and caused another months-long delay in their plans. And it doesn't appear to be dying down yet.
It was only a matter of time before someone tied the Khashoggi murder affair to Israel. And so, on Tuesday, Dec. 18, at moments of weakness for President Donald Trump, Saudi Crown Prince MbS and PM Binyamin Netanyahu, The Wall Street Journal brought Saudi ties with Israeli intelligence and tech systems firms into play.
The WSJ first noted that Saudi Dep. Intelligence chief Gen. Ahmadal-Assiri and court adviser Saud al-Qahtani, – both close advisers to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, (MbS) – who played key roles in the covert ties between Saudi Arabia and Israel, were also were sacked over their suspected involvement in the journalist Jamal Khashoggi’s death at the Istanbul consulate on October 2.
The paper notes suggestively that Qahtani, as media adviser, directed the Saudi press to soften Israel’s image compared with its long portrayal as the Zionist enemy, and managed the purchase of “advanced surveillance technology from Israeli firms,” to serve his second role in “monitoring critics and stifling dissent in Saudi Arabia, which included the hacking of electronic communications.”This was yad Hashem! Things like this go on all the time in their world. None of the players had any reason to believe this time would be any different, but it was different, because it has to do with the fulfillment of the destiny of the Jewish people.
Saudi officials told the paper that Qahtani had “sought out software made by Israeli spyware maker NSO Group and its affiliate, Q CyberTechnology, which began providing the kingdom cyber surveillance tools last year in a $55 million deal.” One official is quoted as saying, “Qahtani was the key player in all of this… He wanted the best and the knew that Israeli firms offered the best.”
Although no facts are presented as evidence that the two senior Saudi officials used Israeli technology to track Khashoggi, or that any Israeli was implicated even indirectly in the affair, the WSJ writes suggestively that that the sidelining of the two officials suspected in the Khashoggi murder has had a negative impact on Saudi-Israeli ties. Another casualty has been the Trump Mid East peace plan, which hinged on the crown prince’s growing affinity with Israel. (Source)
Despite all the setbacks, they are determined to ram this thing through come hell or high water.
"...The EU is truly convinced that the achievement of a two-state solution based on the 1967 borders with Jerusalem as the capital of both states, that meets Israeli and Palestinian security needs, and Palestinian aspirations for statehood and sovereignty, ends the occupation and resolves all final status issues ... is the only viable and realistic way to end the conflict and achieve just and lasting peace," the statement said.As I said, come hell or high water. Well, hell didn't stop them.
The statement came shortly before comments from Trump's UN ambassador Nikki Haley gave a hint, but no details, of her boss's peace plan for Israel and the Palestinians. The plan is long, she said, takes advantage of new technology, and has a lot both sides will like and things they won't like.
Haley said Israelis and Palestinians, as well as countries around the world, have a choice: focus on the parts they dislike, which she said means returning "to the failed status quo of the last 50 years," or focus on parts they like and encourage peace negotiations to move forward.
The US ambassador, who said she has read the plan, told the UN Security Council that "both sides would benefit greatly from a peace agreement, but the Palestinians would benefit more, and the Israelis would risk more."
Haley, who is stepping down at the end of the month, said moving forward to negotiations and peace "will need leaders with real vision to do it." She declared: "The world will be watching."
Haley made no mention of any of these issues in her last speech at the council's monthly Mideast meeting, stressing instead the "unshakeable bond" between the United States and Israel, which she has reflected in her nearly two years as US ambassador.
"Given my record, some might mistakenly conclude that I am unsympathetic to the Palestinian people," she said. "Nothing could be further from the truth."
Haley said neither Israelis nor Palestinians should make peace at "any price" but she highlighted the differences between the two sides.
"Israel wants a peace agreement but it does not need one," she said.
On the other hand, Haley said, the Palestinian people "are suffering terribly, while their leadership clings to 50-year-old demands that have only become less and less realistic," and a peace agreement holds the prospects "of a massive improvement in the quality of their lives and far greater control over their political future."
She said "it is with this backdrop in mind that the Trump administration has crafted its plan for peace between Israel and the Palestinians."
Israel's UN Ambassador Danny Danon said late last month that US officials have told Israel's government they expects to release the long-awaited Israeli-Palestinian peace plan in the beginning of 2019. (Source)
...the Camp Fire in November 2018. The wildfire ranks at the most destructive in state history, with more than 18,000 buildings burned. With 86 deaths, it is also the deadliest ever in California.One month later, will high water?
Storm train to keep rolling through northwestern US with rain, snow and windIf you don't see yad Hashem in all this, you are sleeping right through our redemption!
Rain, wind, mountain snow and rough surf will lash the Northwest and California through Sunday night as the barrage of Pacific storms continues.
The region had little time to gather itself after gusty winds from a storm late Friday caused tree damage and power outages in western Washington.
Over 100,000 people were without power for a time on Friday night, including nearly 50,000 in the Seattle metro area.
More storms are lining up across the northern Pacific Ocean with their sights set on the Pacific Northwest.
"Storms will arrive approximately every 24 to 36 hours through Thursday," AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Alex Sosnowski said.
(See related: Powerful, rare tornado rips through Seattle area; ‘Stay well back ... or risk certain death’: Giant waves slam California coast)
East Coast storm to strike during peak of Christmas travel; Northwest to stay stormy
...A major storm is forecast to bring drenching rain and thunderstorms beginning on Wednesday near the upper Gulf of Mexico coast.
However, the risk of slick roads is likely to expand northward from along the Interstate 10 corridor on Wednesday, Dec. 19, to areas from the Southeast to part of the Midwest and Northeast by week's end.
There is the potential for damaging thunderstorms centered on the Florida Peninsula on Thursday.
Enough rain is likely to fall from the storm as it moves along to aggravate the small stream and river flooding situation in the Southeast and mid-Atlantic regions and lead to urban and small stream flooding in New England.
Motorists should expect delays related to rain, fog and low-lying area flooding to become more extensive as the week draws to a close. A swath of heavy rain is likely to shift northward along the I-95 corridor from Thursday to Friday night. Philadelphia, New York City and Boston may be hit hard with heavy rain for a time.
As the storm strengthens moving northward, winds generated may become strong enough to knock over poorly-rooted trees in the soggy soil.
Motorists venturing on secondary roads in wooded areas during their travels should be wary of the added risk of trees coming down during the storm.
...While the same storm will bring rain initially, a change to snow is likely on the back side from the middle part of the Mississippi Valley to the Great Lakes region.
The potential for rain to change to or end as snow includes the cities of Chicago, Milwaukee and Indianapolis Thursday night into Friday; Detroit, Cleveland and Cincinnati during Friday and perhaps Pittsburgh during Friday night.
...The train of storms that began to affect the Pacific coast last week will continue to blast the Northwest into early next week.
Each storm has the potential to increase the risk of flash flooding and mudslides, while rounds of snow over the high country raise the risk of avalanches.
While the coastal Northwest will be between storms on Wednesday, snow will shift inland over parts of the northern and central Rockies with wintry travel this day. Gusty winds in these areas will cause further travel difficulties at midweek.