Wednesday, September 30, 2015

German Nuclear Horn Gets An Upgrade (Daniel 7)

US Stations New Nuclear Weapons in Germany

By Johannes Stern
Global Research, September 28, 2015
World Socialist Web Site 26 September 2015
Region: Europe, USA
Theme: Militarization and WMD

The US is stationing up to 20 of a new type of B 61-12 nuclear bombs at the Büchel air base in the Eifel region. Altogether they have 80 times the explosive power of the nuclear bomb exploded in Hiroshima. This was revealed in the German television program “Frontal 21” on Tuesday.

The stationing of these bombs is part of the renewal of the American nuclear arsenal. “Frontal 21” referred to the current US budget plan, which indirectly refers to these plans, saying that the weapons will be integrated into German fighter-bombers starting in the third quarter of 2015.

At the same time, additional nuclear weapons locations in Europe are being upgraded with new B 61-12 nuclear bombs. These include the airbases in Incirlik, Turkey and Aviano, Italy.

Der Spiegel already reported last year that the first bombs costing about $10 billion should be available in Europe in 2020. It said that the expansion of the air base in Büchel will cost an estimated $154 million and that Germany will cover one-fifth of this.

According to “Frontal 21”, the Social Democratic Party (SPD) defence policymaker Thomas Hitschler confirmed that the German government is going to invest €112 million in Büchel over the next few years. Among other things, the runway of the airfield will be fitted with a modern instrument landing system. In plain language, he said, “new, even more dangerous American nuclear bombs are due to come to Büchel and, in the case of war, would be directed to their targets by German Tornados.

The director of the Nuclear Information Project at the Federation of American Scientists, Hans M. Kristensen, described a possible horrific scenario to “Frontal 21”: “In case of war, the nuclear weapons stationed in Germany would be used at the orders of the US president. The US forces would then hand over the nuclear weapons to the German pilots and these German pilots would then attack the target with nuclear weapons.”

The stationing is “a hidden American weapons build-up,” he said. The new bombs allow “themselves to be steered to the target” and are “much more precise than the nuclear weapons that have been stationed in Germany so far.” This is “a new weapon” because the US previously had “no steerable nuclear bombs.”

Kristensen called this “a very unusual scenario for a country that had pledged never to use nuclear weapons—either directly or indirectly.

That nuclear armament is taking place in Germany, and the fact that—after the terrible crimes of the German military in two world wars—the German military could drop nuclear bombs is horrifying. It also violates German and international laws.

Articles I and II of the nuclear weapon treaty signed by Germany in 1969 forbids the acceptance of control over nuclear weapons or the transmission of them elsewhere. In the text “Humanitarian International Law in armed conflicts,” a set of regulations for soldiers in the German armed forces from June 2008, it reads: “In particular the deployment of the following weapons by German soldiers in armed conflict is banned: anti-personnel mines, nuclear weapons, bacteriological weapons and chemical weapons (for example, poison gas).”

The renewal of US nuclear weapons in Germany is a provocation against Russia and raises the danger of a nuclear war in Europe.

Moscow’s foreign office spokeswoman Maria Zakharova told “Frontal 21”: “It disturbs us that states that actually have no nuclear weapons carry out the deployment of these weapons and, indeed, within the framework of the NATO practice of nuclear sharing.” A Russian government spokesperson warned: “That could change the balance of forces in Europe. And without a doubt, that would require Russia take retaliatory action to re-establish strategic balance and parity.”

The current edition of Spiegel Geschichte (Spiegel History), under the headline “The bomb: The age of nuclear intimidation”, is devoted to the growing danger of a nuclear war. It gives an overview of the massive build-up of arms, which has taken place “above all since the outbreak of the Ukraine crisis”. In an “arms race 2.0,” the nuclear powers are modernizing their nuclear weapons “at great expense”, it says.

According to a study by the Bulletin of Nuclear Scientists, Washington wants to spend about $350 billion on nuclear armaments in the next decade alone, including a new class of nuclear U-boats, new nuclear weapon-bearing long-distance bombers and tactical fighters, a nuclear cruise missile and the building of new nuclear weapons factories and simulation facilities.

Russia is alsoin the middle of a broad modernization of its strategic and non-strategic nuclear armed forces”, according to a study, which says that two new Borei U-boats loaded with intercontinental nuclear rockets are “completely operational”. Furthermore, Moscow is working on a new strategic stealth bomber and, at the same time, is developing a new intercontinental rocket called “Sarmat,” which can carry up to 15 nuclear warheads.

The buildup of nuclear weapons in Büchel is taking place with the support of the German government. This confirms that German imperialism is not a “peaceful” intermediary between the nuclear powers, as it would like to present itself, but plays an active role in a development that threatens the survival of the entire human race.

Last October, in a paper titled “The nuclear dimension of the Ukraine crisis,” the think tank Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik, which is close to the German government, warned: “25 years after the fall of the Berlin wall, there is no effective crisis reaction mechanism between NATO and Russia. It became clear how important direct channels of communication would be in April and September, for example, when there were dangerous marine manoeuvre incidents in the Black Sea.”

About one year later, the largest NATO manoeuvre to take place in Europe in decades, Trident Juncture, is scheduled for the end of September and the buildup of nuclear weapons is in full swing.

Authorities Expecting The Sixth Seal? (Revelation 6:12)

US Raises Threat of Quake but Lowers Risk for Towers
New York Times
JULY 17, 2014
Here is another reason to buy a mega-million-dollar apartment in a Manhattan high-rise: Earthquake forecast maps for New York City that a federal agency issued on Thursday indicate “a slightly lower hazard for tall buildings than previously thought.”
The agency, the United States Geodetic Survey, tempered its latest quake prediction with a big caveat.
“The eastern U.S. has the potential for larger and more damaging earthquakes than considered in previous maps and assessments,” the agency said, citing the magnitude 5.8 quake that struck Virginia in 2011.
Federal seismologists based their projections of a lower hazard for tall buildings — “but still a hazard nonetheless,” they cautioned — on a lower likelihood of slow shaking from an earthquake occurring near the city, the type of shaking that typically causes more damage to taller structures.
“The tall buildings in Manhattan are not where you should be focusing,” said John Armbruster, a seismologist with the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University. “They resonate with long period waves. They are designed and engineered to ride out an earthquake. Where you should really be worried in New York City is the common brownstone and apartment building and buildings that are poorly maintained.”
Mr. Armbruster was not involved in the federal forecast, but was an author of an earlier study that suggested that “a pattern of subtle but active faults makes the risk of earthquakes to the New York City area substantially greater than formerly believed.”
He noted that barely a day goes by without a New York City building’s being declared unsafe, without an earthquake. “If you had 30, 40, 50 at one time, responders would be overloaded,” he said.
The city does have an earthquake building code that went into effect in 1996, and that applies primarily to new construction.
A well-maintained building would probably survive a magnitude 5 earthquake fairly well, he said. The last magnitude 5 earthquake in the city struck in 1884. Another is not necessarily inevitable; faults are more random and move more slowly than they do in, say, California. But he said the latest federal estimate was probably raised because of the magnitude of the Virginia quake.
“Could there be a magnitude 6 in New York?” Mr. Armbruster said. “In Virginia, in a 300 year history, 4.8 was the biggest, and then you have a 5.8. So in New York, I wouldn’t say a 6 is impossible.
Mr. Armbruster said the Geodetic Survey forecast would not affect his daily lifestyle. “I live in a wood-frame building with a brick chimney and I’m not alarmed sitting up at night worried about it,” he said. “But society’s leaders need to take some responsibility.

Why Britain Is A Nuclear Horn (Daniel 7)

Why Britain needs nuclear weapons


In Brighton, opposite the derelict remains of the burnt out West Pier, delegates to Labour’s Conference are having an unusual year. There are no campaigners protesting outside the small secure zone, because – as the joke goes – the crazies are all up on the stage inside the hall making speeches. Some regulars haven’t come, and those that have remark at just how unstructured, how poorly led some elements of conference seem to be. In the late summer heat, Labour is struggling under the new regime – widely expected by pessimistic insiders to last twelve to eighteen months – and trying to stop Corbyn from trashing Labour’s electoral credibility for 2025. One of the first early battles was preventing a debate Corbyn wanted on the renewal of Trident, Britain’s submarine-based nuclear deterrent.

Introduced in 1994 to replace the predecessor system Polaris, Trident is expected to last until the middle of the next decade, which means that construction of a new system needs to begin soon. Jeremy Corbyn doesn’t believe that it should be renewed, and the Conservatives are already going hard on Labour as a threat to national security. The Conservative manifesto pledged a replacement to Trident, promising four submarines to deliver a continuous deterrent with a submarine always at sea at a likely cost of over £20bn just to build. Given the immense cost – the nuclear fleet are the most expensive items the UK owns – why would the UK want to maintain the ability to launch nuclear missiles from beneath the sea?

In a 2007 vote, MPs voted for plans to renew Trident by 409 to 161. Since then the government has been spending hundreds of millions of pounds planning the Trident replacement. As one of the five permanent and founding members of the Security Council, the UK is one of the biggest global defence spenders and a recognized nuclear power with the power to veto UN Security Council resolutions. The UK hasn’t used the right to veto since 1989 when it was used to defend the US invasion of Panama, but with that place on the UN Security Council the UK has a seat at the very highest table in international politics alongside the USA, Russia, China and France. While some point to the difficulty of removing the UK from the Council, members are the only states recognized as “nuclear weapon states” under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, and many fear that abandoning the UK’s nuclear weapons would loosen our grip on permanent membership.

Since the US bombing of the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945, no nation has used a nuclear weapon. During the Cold War, the UK’s nuclear submarines were part of NATO’s targeted planning of USSR sites to allow NATO to launch a nuclear counter strike independent of national orders. Such drastic planning for the remote circumstances of a full-scale nuclear war were part of the stalemate that prevented the Cold War from ever becoming hot and prevented ‘nuclear blackmail’ of Europe.

Today, India and Pakistan’s nuclear weapons are part of the fragile balancing act between the nations that has prevented full-scale war. With Russia’s expansionist conduct in Georgia, the Ukraine, and their actions in Syria, it would be impossible not rule out Russia as a threat to global peace and stability. The threat of Nuclear weapons might not deter Islamic State, but between states they have the powerful effect of raising the stakes to a point at which conventional warfare becomes too dangerous to contemplate. As the victim of nuclear weapons, Japan has long avoided them, but with tensions with China in the East China Sea, there have even been calls in Japan to develop nuclear weapons. Given the global trend towards proliferation, unilateral abandonment of nuclear weapons is considered by many to pose a major risk to the UK’s security.

Submarine-based nuclear weapons give the UK the ability to hide their nuclear weapons, and to fire them independent of communication. One of the first jobs an incoming UK Prime Minister has is to sit and write the instructions to nuclear submarines that sit in their safes while on patrol, to be opened in the event of nuclear war. These “letters of last resort” are part of the system that ensures the UK’s nuclear deterrent is a functioning deterrent in all circumstances. At any one time the UK has a submarine carrying 16 nuclear missiles, each capable of hitting targets 7,000 miles away. Each missile has a dozen independent warheads with the power to destroy a city. There is no scenario in which the destruction of 192 cities is a good outcome, but the chilling effect of Trident is to massively discourage aggression against the UK or nuclear blackmail by states against the UK. There are even rumours that Margaret Thatcher persuaded French President François Mitterrand to give the UK the codes to disable Argentina’s French missiles during the Falklands war by threatening to fire a nuclear weapon at Argentina. Such is the persuasive power of such weapons in conflict, even when they are not deployed.

Britain’s nuclear deterrent is an expensive one, but it is estimated that up to 15,000 jobs depend on it. Britain has never had to use a nuclear weapon, but there is evidence that having them has assisted the UK in conflict and in peacetime. While the rest of the world continues to pursue them, it would seem prudent to hold on to ours, and to our foremost position in the United Nations. Jeremy Corbyn couldn’t persuade his party even to debate Trident, let alone to vote against it, which will leave Britain’s top military planners, and the British defence industry, sighing with relief.

The Holy War 0f Esau (Genesis 27)


‘Religious cleansing’ touted as largest in history
Published: 13 hour
Cheryl Chumley

ISIS terrorists are plotting to unleash a “nuclear tsunami” on the world, a full-scale assault on those of differing religious beliefs aimed at bringing Earth to its knees in worship of Allah, a German journalist reported, in his new “Inside IS – Ten Days in the Islamic State” investigative book.
Jurgen Todenhofer served in Chancellor Angela Merkel’s CDU party and then jumped ship to journalism in 2000 as a war correspondent. In that capacity, he spent 10 days with ISIS under the careful watch of world-known beheader “Jihadi John,” Israel National News reported.

Among his findings: “The terrorists plan on killing several hundred million people. The West is drastically underestimating the power of ISIS,” he wrote.

Todenhofer said the terror group’s plan is to obtain nuclear capability and unleash “nuclear tsunami preparing the largest religious cleansing in history,” Israel National News said.

“House of War: Islam’s Jihad Against the World” conveys what the West needs to know about Islam and the violent, expansionary ideology that seeks the subjugation and destruction of other faiths, cultures and systems of government

He also confirmed ISIS “now control[s] land greater in size than the United Kingdom and are supported by an almost ecstatic enthusiasm the like of which I’ve never encountered before in a war zone [and] every day hundreds of willing fighters from all over the world come.”

And lest the world doubt: “They are the most brutal and most dangerous enemy I have ever seen in my life. I don’t see anyone who has a real chance to stop them. Only Arabs can stop IS. I came back [from my 10 days with them] very pessimistic,” he said.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Scarlet Woman Will Depose Of EX (Revelation 17:4)

Hillary Clinton not sure if Bill Clinton would get West Wing office


Hillary Clinton isn’t sure if former President Clinton would have an office in the West Wing if she is elected president.

“He’s a pretty busy guy, I don’t know anything like that,” Hillary Clinton said after MSNBC’s Chuck Todd asked her what role Bill Clinton might play on her team.

“I’m not counting my chickens before they hatch. I just want to be sure that we get the chance to earn the votes of the American people and to win the White House back,” the front-runner for the Democratic nomination said in response to a question about Bill Clinton having a West Wing office.
In the interview airing on MSNBC’s “MTP Daily,” Clinton lauded her husband as a “great adviser” who “knows as much about the economy and how to get jobs created and how to help people see their incomes rise as anybody that I could talk to.”

But she wouldn’t elaborate on the role that the former president would have in her potential administration.

The first lady typically holds an office in the East Wing of the White House, complete with her own staff to work on events and initiatives that stem from her office. But Bill Clinton would be a presidential spouse like no other, both because of his gender and his own eight-year tenure in the White House.

China And Pakistan Nuclear Powers At Sea (Daniel 7)

Revealed: Why China Is Selling Submarines to Pakistan

Does the sale represent a step in China’s possible ambitions to have a toehold in the Indian Ocean?
By Benjamin David Baker
September 28, 2015

As previously covered by The Diplomat, Pakistan announced earlier this year that it has agreed to purchase eight modified Type 41 Yuan-class diesel-electric submarines from China. These boats will provide Islamabad with much-needed Anti-Access/Area Denial (A2/AD) capabilities against the Indian Navy in case of war. This would be especially useful in case of an Indian blockade of Pakistan’s coast and could give New Delhi grounds to pause before deploying its planned new aircraft carrier, the INS Vikrant.

A Yuan-class submarine is undoubtedly a great piece of kit. It is China’s first class of submarines to incorporate an indigenously designed- and constructed Air-Independent Propulsion system (AIP), giving it a cruise speed of 18 knots and an operational range of 8,000 nautical miles. Although the export version of the Yuan, named the S-20, does not automatically come fitted with the AIP, Pakistan has apparently been able to secure it for its subs. Furthermore, the Yuan is integrated “with advanced noise reduction techniques including anechoic tiles, passive/active noise reduction and an asymmetrical seven-blade skewed propeller.”

Combined with the AIP, this makes the Yuan-class the quietest non-nuclear sub in the PLAN. Furthermore, the Yuan has an impressive set of teeth. Aside from six tubes firing standard 553mm torpedoes, it is equipped with the YJ-8/8A Anti-Ship Cruise Missile (ASCM). While this weapon only has a maximum range of between 30-42 km, there are plans to equip the Yuans with the YJ-18 ASCM. These missiles have a reported range of 220 km and, represent a real A2/AD “force multiplier” for the Yuan. Whether Pakistan will attempt to acquire these missiles, or opt to go for another option (such as their indigenously produced Hatf VII Babur) is unknown.

The sale raises one crucial question: why is China selling Pakistan these subs? There is undoubtedly a commercial aspect to this transaction (it is unknown how much Pakistan will pay for these boats, although it is certainly in the multi-billion dollar range). However, one potential reason which is worrying analysts in New Delhi is that this represents a step in China’s possible ambitions to have a toehold in the Indian Ocean. Without opening the can of worms that is the “String of Pearls” debate, it’s worth looking at this possibility.

Here are the facts: Firstly, the Indian Ocean is important for China for a range of reasons. The amount of Chinese sea-borne trade which passes through the Indian Ocean sea-lane is staggering. These sea-lines of communication (SLOCs) represent a lifeline for the Chinese economy, not least in terms of imports of natural resources, especially hybrocarbons, and exports, in terms of manufactured goods. Any naval strategist worth his salt has read Alfred Thayer Mahan, and will immediately recognize the importance of securing a trading state’s SLOCs. China is no exception.

Secondly, China has recently deployed submarines to the Indian Ocean. (This, incidentally, included the visit of a Yuan-class boat to Karachi.) According to Beijing, these are primarily there to participate in the ongoing anti-piracy campaign in the Gulf of Aden. While this is at least partially true, it is also likely that they are conducting exercises, surveys, and perhaps even combat patrols which can be useful for future operations in the Indian Ocean. Thirdly, Beijing does care about its image and is “realistic” about its power-projection capabilities. According to a recent US Naval War College report, it’s unlikely that China will construct overseas bases in the same way that the United States or France have in the near future in fear of alarming other stakeholders and overstretching naval resources needed closer to home. Finally, China is a long way from the Indian Ocean, and Pakistan is its closest partner in the neighborhood.

Even if its subs can stay at sea for months without refueling at a time, its crews can’t. Having a well-fitted anchorage close to a submarine’s intended area of operations makes it much easier to rotate crews, take on fresh supplies, and carry out maintenance. The PLAN has already called on ports in Oman, Djibouti, and Aden during its anti-piracy campaigns in the Gulf of Aden. However, this has so far only included surface vessels. Submarines often require more specialized facilities to function effectively. Locating a resupply place (not base) in the friendliest state in the area makes sense.

A Pakistani naval facility which already berths compatible subs sounds like a good fit for such a “place.” It would remove the need to permanently station a large number of personnel and equipment abroad, while providing adequate maintenance facilities for the sort of routine repairs that submarines unavoidably need in order to function smoothly over long periods of time. This wouldn’t represent the first time this kind of arrangement has occurred. For example, the British Oberon-class was used by several other allied states during the Cold War, including Australia and Canada. The fact that these navies operated the same class of vessels facilitated maintenance during exercises and visits

Iran’s President Pushes For Iran Hegemony (Daniel 8:4)

Iran’s President Rouhani wants global role after nuclear deal

Oren Dorell, USA TODAY

UNITED NATIONS — Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on Monday praised the recent Iran nuclear deal as a model for solving future international conflicts, including a global confrontation against extremism.

The nuclear agreement between world powers and Iran was “the first time (that) two sides, rather than negotiating peace after war, engaged in a dialogue of understanding before the eruption of conflict,” Rouhani said during his speech before the United Nations General Assembly.
The accord “should herald a new era” and be the basis for change in the region, he said.
The five countries that form the permanent U.N. Security Council — the United States, United Kingdom, France, Russia and China — and Germany negotiated the deal with Iran.

The agreement includes eventual relief of sanctions that were imposed on Iran for violating the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty. Lifting the sanctions could pave the way for oil-rich Iran to become an export hub in the Middle East, said Rouhani, who was elected on a platform of economic development and integration with the world community.

“We want to suggest a new constructive way to base international order,” Rouhani said. “Peace alongside development lets anger and resentment dissipate. The only way to uproot terrorism in the Middle East is to undermine its economic and social causes.”

Rouhani said Iran will demonstrate how the nuclear agreement reached through diplomacy can produce economic development.

Iran, however, is the world’s foremost state-sponsor of terrorism, according to the U.S. State Department. The department lists Iran’s support for the murderous regime of Syrian President Bashar Assad, the Lebanese Shiite group Hezbollah and Houthi rebels in Yemen.

Iran also supports Shiite militias in Iraq that are fighting Islamic State militants alongside U.S.-backed and U.S.-trained Iraqi and Kurdish government forces in that country.

Iran’s human rights record is also cause for concern, according to the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights, which said the country’s 753 executions last year are more numerous than almost anywhere else in the world.

In his speech Monday, Rouhani offered to lead a global effort based on how the nuclear deal was reached to fight ignorance, poverty, terrorism and violence.

“I would like to invite the whole world to form a (joint effort) to create a united front against extremism and violence,” he said.

Rouhani said the U.S. approach, which he characterized as the invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan and support for “the Zionist regime” — Israel — gives terrorists “justification for their actions.”
He said the way to tackle regional conflict is through dialogue and cooperation with the central governments to establish stability — and then build democratic governance in the Middle East region.

A key factor in the Iran nuclear deal was the willingness to find a middle ground that benefited all sides at the bargaining table, Rouhani said.

“The interest of both parties should be taken into account … and win-win solutions should be the basis for agreement,” he said.

The Sixth Seal Will Be On The East (Revelation 6:12)

Did You Feel It? East vs West: This image illustrates how earthquakes are felt over much larger areas in the eastern U.S. than those west of the Rocky Mountains. The map compares USGS
Did You Feel It? East vs West: This image illustrates how earthquakes are felt over much larger areas in the eastern U.S. than those west of the Rocky Mountains. The map compares USGS “Did You Feel It?” data from the magnitude 5.8 earthquake on August 23, 2011 in central Virginia (green) to data from an earthquake of similar magnitude and depth in California (red). ((High resolution image)

New Evidence Shows Power of East Coast Earthquakes
Virginia Earthquake Triggered Landslides at Great Distances
Released: 11/6/2012 8:30:00 AM

Earthquake shaking in the eastern United States can travel much farther and cause damage over larger areas than previously thought.

U.S. Geological Survey scientists found that last year’s magnitude 5.8 earthquake in Virginia triggered landslides at distances four times farther—and over an area 20 times larger—than previous research has shown.

“We used landslides as an example and direct physical evidence to see how far-reaching shaking from east coast earthquakes could be,” said Randall Jibson, USGS scientist and lead author of this study. “Not every earthquake will trigger landslides, but we can use landslide distributions to estimate characteristics of earthquake energy and how far regional ground shaking could occur.”

“Scientists are confirming with empirical data what more than 50 million people in the eastern U.S. experienced firsthand: this was one powerful earthquake,” said USGS Director Marcia McNutt. “Calibrating the distance over which landslides occur may also help us reach back into the geologic record to look for evidence of past history of major earthquakes from the Virginia seismic zone.”
This study will help inform earthquake hazard and risk assessments as well as emergency preparedness, whether for landslides or other earthquake effects.

This study also supports existing research showing that although earthquakes are less frequent in the East, their damaging effects can extend over a much larger area as compared to the western United States.

The research is being presented today at the Geological Society of America conference, and will be published in the December 2012 issue of the Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America.
The USGS found that the farthest landslide from the 2011 Virginia earthquake was 245 km (150 miles) from the epicenter. This is by far the greatest landslide distance recorded from any other earthquake of similar magnitude. Previous studies of worldwide earthquakes indicated that landslides occurred no farther than 60 km (36 miles) from the epicenter of a magnitude 5.8 earthquake.
“What makes this new study so unique is that it provides direct observational evidence from the largest earthquake to occur in more than 100 years in the eastern U.S,” said Jibson. “Now that we know more about the power of East Coast earthquakes, equations that predict ground shaking might need to be revised.”

It is estimated that approximately one-third of the U.S. population could have felt last year’s earthquake in Virginia, more than any earthquake in U.S. history. About 148,000 people reported their ground-shaking experiences caused by the earthquake on the USGS “Did You Feel It?” website. Shaking reports came from southeastern Canada to Florida and as far west as Texas.

In addition to the great landslide distances recorded, the landslides from the 2011 Virginia earthquake occurred in an area 20 times larger than expected from studies of worldwide earthquakes. Scientists plotted the landslide locations that were farthest out and then calculated the area enclosed by those landslides. The observed landslides from last year’s Virginia earthquake enclose an area of about 33,400 km2, while previous studies indicated an expected area of about 1,500 km2 from an earthquake of similar magnitude.

“The landslide distances from last year’s Virginia earthquake are remarkable compared to historical landslides across the world and represent the largest distance limit ever recorded,” said Edwin Harp, USGS scientist and co-author of this study. “There are limitations to our research, but the bottom line is that we now have a better understanding of the power of East Coast earthquakes and potential damage scenarios.”

The difference between seismic shaking in the East versus the West is due in part to the geologic structure and rock properties that allow seismic waves to travel farther without weakening.
Learn more about the 2011 central Virginia earthquake.

Before The Sixth Seal (Revelation 6:12)

Quake reported near Schoharie County dam

USGS This map provided by the U.S. Geological Survey shows the epicenter of the earthquake reported near Gilboa, and areas where residents reported feeling the quake.

Updated 9 hours ago

A minor earthquake was reported in Schoharie County late Saturday night, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

The USGS website reports the magnitude-3 earthquake struck near the Upper Blenheim-Gilboa Reservoir, east of Mine Kill State Park, in North Blenheim, at about 11:30 p.m. Saturday. The reservoir, which sits 2,000 feet up at the top of Brown Mountain, holds 5 billion gallons of water, which are fed into the New York Power Authority’s Pumped Storage Power Project to generate hydroelectric power. A second reservoir sits at the base of the mountain. The two bodies of water are open to seasonal boating and fishing at NYPA’s discretion.

The 17.6 billion-gallon Gilboa Dam is less than five miles away from the Power Authority. A hydrograph of the Schoharie Creek at the Gilboa Dam on Sunday night showed that water levels were below flood stage, and falling.

The quake, which originated more than 8 miles under the surface, was felt by some in the Gilboa and Stamford areas, and as far away as Schoharie and Cobleskill (about 30 miles from the quake site). The USGS website indicates only a handful of reports from anyone who felt the quake.

I felt it … thought it was the train,” Ketina Delgado wrote on The Daily Star’s Facebook page. “Thought it felt like an earthquake cause my bed was shaking too hard and I even heard some car alarms go off couple of times.”

According to USGS, a magnitude-3 earthquake is considered minor, and is unlikely to cause damage to buildings.
No one from NYPA was available Sunday to comment on the status of the dam.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Antichrist’s Men Prepare to Fight ISIS (Revelation 13:18)

Iraqi tribes ready to join anti-ISIS volunteer forces, says PMU official

By Dina al-Shibeeb | Al Arabiya News
Monday, 28 September 2015

Haitham al-Mayahi, the U.S.-based director of the international relations office of the Popular Mobilization Units (PMU), told Al Arabiya News recently that 20 tribal sheikhs from the western Iraqi province of Anbar, who fought al-Qaeda in the last decade, are ready to join forces to defeat Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) militants.

The Iran-backed PMU was formed from Shiite armed groups and volunteers after a fatwa (an Islamic religious edict) by the influential spiritual leader of Iraq’s Shiite majority, Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, calling Iraqis to fight ISIS.

Since then, the PMU’s reputation for its hard-hitting and “willing to die” fighters emerged after Iraq’s army abandoned the country’s second largest city of Mosul last June. Their power intensified after the Iraqi army then lost Anbar’s Ramadi in May.

While some PMU members were criticized for human rights violations after they took back the late President Saddam Hussein’s hometown of Tikrit in April, they continue to be considered by observers as a necessary component for ISIS’s defeat in the city.

In an interview, the Washington-based Mayahi, who recently returned from two months in Iraq, discussed the future formation for a whole new PMU and a new vision to create an all-inclusive unit to defeat ISIS, pleading for U.S. arms.

Mayahi also warned that ISIS were eyeing an attack on the capital Baghdad, citing inside intelligence.

After outreaching to the tribal sheikhs, who expressed their wish to join the PMU, they and Mayahi sent a letter in early September to the PMU’s leader, as well as Prime Minister Haider Abadi.
The tribal leaders had fought in a period starting from 2006 in a coalition known as the Awakening. Together, they managed to defeat al-Qaeda in 2008.

While PMU includes other four brigades which are not Shiites – one Sunni, two Christian groups and a Yazidi – the members of the Awakening have insufficient weapons nor have the governmental approval to be part of the fight, as fears still linger on whether they should be included.

Former Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki mistrusted the Awakening, fearing that the armed Sunnis could become a problem for his Shiite-dominated government after the defeat of al-Qaeda, leaving them marginalized.

Korea Prepares For Another Nuclear Launch (Daniel 7)

Satellite, missile test or space junk? North Korea readies launch

3 Hours Ago


The satellite that North Korea launched into space three years ago circles the earth every 95 minutes at an altitude of about 540 km (335 miles), its orbit decaying.

No signal has ever been detected from the crude-looking 100-kg (220-pound) hunk of black metal that the North said was mounted with cameras to take images and transmit them back to Pyongyang.
The North is planning another satellite launch next month, re-igniting fears that it is really testing a system to deliver nuclear weapons. The secretive state is already under international sanctions for its nuclear and missile tests.

South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se said this month the North’s plan to launch a new satellite, which could be timed around the 70th anniversary of its ruling party on Oct 10, would be a disguised missile test. The United States has said such a launch could lead to more sanctions.
North Korea says its space program is peaceful and any attempt to stop it is an attack on its sovereignty.

While many observers were impressed that Pyongyang managed to put an object into orbit in 2012, German aerospace engineer Markus Schiller said in a 2013 analysis that the mission was a “low performance” event and “not a game changer.”

“Nothing that has happened in the past years has changed my assessment,” Schiller told Reuters this week, despite further short-range missile launches by Pyongyang using existing technology.
“Most of these activities still seem to be more motivated by political reasons than by engineering ones,” he said.

The North’s space agency said last week it is building a new satellite and readying it for launch, possibly around Oct. 10, which suggests it has made advances in developing a ballistic missile.
South Korea’s defense ministry said this week it had not detected any signs of preparations at the main launch site, about 50 km from the Chinese border.

While a satellite launch utilizes technology also found in ballistic missiles, the thrust and speed of the launch vehicle, as well as the point of engine cut-off, are different. Also, a missile must be designed for its warhead to withstand the stress of atmosphere re-entry, which is not the case when putting a satellite into space and leaving it there.

Soviet technology

North Korea’s successful December 2012 satellite launch came after a failed attempt earlier that year, an embarrassment for its new young leader, Kim Jong Un.

He had taken over from his father, who died in December 2011, and was trying to make a mark as the leader of a country that had defied years of international pressure and sanctions in pursuit of missile and nuclear weapons programs.

The satellite was propelled by North Korea’s Unha-3, a home grown three-stage rocket based on 1950s Soviet Scud missile technology, with advanced fuel used in its final stage. Unha is Korean for galaxy.

South Korean and U.S. officials, as well as space experts, said after the launch that no signal was ever detected from the object, whose orbit can be tracked online. (here)
The design and engineering that made the 30-metre-high Unha 3 suitable to launch a satellite make it a poor vehicle to deliver weapons, largely because launch preparations are difficult to hide due to the time it takes to assemble the rocket, stand it up and fuel it.

A new launch vehicle has yet to be spotted by satellite imagery, with its location still unknown.
“Preparations for the Unha-3, and whatever new space launch vehicle they might roll out, will be observable well in advance of a launch,” said Daniel Pinkston, a visiting fellow at Babes-Bolyai University in Romania.

“So it is not a system that can be used for any military objective,” said Pinkston, who has studied the North’s political and weapons strategy.

Still, the North’s pursuit of long-range rocket technology should be taken seriously because of potential capabilities it might acquire in the future, Pinkston added.

“It should be clear how important these capabilities are to the leadership because they are expensive and difficult to acquire,” he said.

Welcome To The END (Revelation 15)


Atomic Nightmare: Welcome to Pakistani Nuclear Weapons 101
Five things you need to know regarding one of the world’s fastest-growing nuclear weapons programs. 

Daniel R. DePetris
September 26, 2015

Could Pakistan be more of a nuclear security threat to Israel than Iran? Conventional wisdom suggests that a nuclear-armed Iran is the most pressing potential nuclear threat to Israel. It’s a country run by a Shia theocracy espousing invective for Israel on a daily basis. Indeed, Iranian supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei ranted about the possibility of Israel’s forthcoming destruction as recently as this week. However, Azriel Bermant, a research associate at the Tel Aviv-based Institute for National Security Studies, offered a different take earlier this year in a column he wrote for the Israeli newspaper Haaretz: the real threat might come from Pakistan.

Bermant postulated that despite the worries of both Israeli and American policymakers alike, Iran may not be the nuclear threat that Israel should focus on. After all, Tehran doesn’t have a single nuclear weapon at its disposal. Further, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action signed in July will forestall the Iranians from the nuclear threshold for the next fifteen to twenty-five years. Rather, Bermant argues, “one could argue that Islamabad poses more of a threat to Israel than Tehran does.”
It’s worth considering because the Pakistani government possesses a fairly large nuclear arsenal. Over the years, President Barack Obama has expressed reservations about the continuing growth and stability of Pakistan’s nuclear weapons program. Only three months into his first term in April 2009, President Obama voiced his concerns: “We have huge…national-security interests in making sure that Pakistan is stable and that you don’t end up having a nuclear-armed militant state.”

Here is why the United States likely continues to have those worries, nearly seven years later:

1. Pakistan’s Growing Arsenal

There are thousands of nuclear weapons in the world today. According to the latest count from the Federation of American Scientists, the five original nuclear powers have a combined 15,465 nuclear weapons between them, most of which are divided amongst the United States and Russia. Yet the fastest growing nuclear arsenal in the world is not included in this number. While Pakistan has a range of 100-120 nuclear weapons in its possession — a figure that pales in comparison to the United States or Russia — Islamabad has devoted a tremendous amount of its military budget to growing its arsenal and procuring the associated delivery systems that are needed to launch them.

More alarming than Pakistan’s current stockpile is the projected growth of its arsenal over the next decade. In a wide-ranging report for the Council on Foreign Relations, professor Gregory D. Koblentz of George Mason University assessed that Pakistan had enough highly enriched uranium to increase its stockpile to 200 nuclear weapons by 2020 if fully utilized. Percentage wise, this would mean that the Pakistani army would be projected to increase its nuclear weapons arsenal by roughly sixty-seven percent over the next five years. In other words, Pakistan could have as many nuclear weapons as the United Kingdom by 2020. Moreover, Pakistan falls outside the purview of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.

To guarantee that they the ability to rapidly expand their stockpile, the Pakistani military is investing in reprocessing plutonium in addition to enriching uranium. In January 2015, the Institute for Science and International Security reported that the Pakistanis opened up their fourth plutonium facility at Khushab, which provides Islamabad with an additional channel to construct nuclear bomb material in a relatively short period of time. “Its expansion appears to be part of an effort to increase the production of weapons-grade plutonium,” the ISIS report (not to be confused with the terrorist group) reads. “Allowing Pakistan to build a larger number of miniaturized plutonium-based nuclear weapons that can complement its existing highly enriched uranium nuclear weapons.”

2. Pakistani Nukes a Major U.S. Intelligence Priority

To say that the U.S. intelligence community is closely monitoring the development of Pakistan’s nuclear weapons program would be an understatement. The U.S. government is doing more than just monitoring: they are actively preparing for a terrible catastrophe and engaging Pakistani officials in the hopes that they will stop pouring resources into the expansion of their program. The last thing Washington wants or needs is a nuclear crisis flashpoint in a dangerous and unpredictable region filled with an alphabet soup of Islamist terrorist groups. The U.S. government under both George W. Bush and Barack Obama has been trying to prevent such a crisis scenario from occurring.

Thanks to the 2010 Wikileaks disclosures, we can glean how seriously the State Department took the problem. In September 2009, on the margins of a nuclear security meeting among the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council, Undersecretary for Arms Control Ellen Tauscher discussed with China’s foreign minister about how intransigent Islamabad had been in implementing the Fissile Material Cutoff Treaty (FMCT). In response to Tauscher’s concerns, China’s representative agreed to discuss the treaty problems with Islamabad directly.

The prospect of Pakistan losing control of its nuclear materials has been a persistent headache for the United States. It is a scenario that military planners and intelligence officials have been planning for even before the September 11, 2001 attacks. NBC News ran a long investigative piece on U.S. plans to unilaterally secure Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal if a situation erupted that would put U.S. interests at risk — whether it included nuclear materials being stolen by a terrorist group; extremists infiltrating the ranks of the Pakistani army or a quick escalation of violence between Pakistan and India. The investigation found that “Pakistan’s weaponry has been the subject of continuing discussions, scenarios, war games and possibly even military exercises by U.S. intelligence and special operations forces regarding so-called ‘snatch-and-grab’ operations.”

The safety of Pakistan’s nuclear stockpile remains a key action item for the U.S. intelligence community today — so much so that Pakistan-specific analytical cells were created in order to address the lack of information that America’s intelligence professionals were receiving about Islamabad’s proliferation activities.

3. Nukes Have Gotten Pakistan Into Trouble With the U.S.

Pakistan’s high enrichment of uranium is not a new problem — it has complicated the U.S.-Pakistan bilateral relationship since the mid 1970’s, when U.S. lawmakers first enacted a strict set of economic sanctions on Islamabad’s nuclear weaponization activities. The 1977 Glenn amendment added to the Foreign Assistance Act was the first of many congressional efforts to pressure Pakistan (and any other non-nuclear weapons state not party to the NPT) to refrain from conducting a nuclear explosive test. That legislation came in handy in May 1998, when President Bill Clinton enacted sanctions on Pakistan in retaliation for a nuclear test that occurred two weeks after India’s own testing (New Delhi was also sanctioned at the time). Those sanctions prevented the U.S. from sending any foreign assistance to Pakistan — a restriction that was eventually eased later in the year under a new statute.
President Clinton’s predecessor also had his run-ins with the Pakistanis when it came to nuclear proliferation. In 1990, President George H.W. Bush was unable to certify to Congress that Pakistan did not possess a nuclear device. Because President Bush could not make the certification required under U.S. law, Washington was compelled to substantial cut off military and economic assistance to the Pakistani Government — a provision that was in effect until 1996, when the Brown amendment relaxed the restrictions on economic aid.

All of the country-wide sanctions were in addition to the numerous penalties on companies who violated U.S. arms control export policies, which forbid corporations around the world from delivering “material, equipment, or technology…to be used by Pakistan in the manufacture of a nuclear explosive device.” Dealings between Washington and Islamabad were very tense over the nuclear issue throughout the 1980’s and 1990’s. That all changed after 9/11, when Washington enlisted Pakistan’s support against Al-Qaeda.

4. Pakistan Needs Nukes for its Defense

Pakistan likes to fancy itself as a peer competitor to its historical rival India in the South Asia region. But if we’re going to be perfectly honest, Islamabad cannot compete with India in conventional capabilities. By virtue of New Delhi’s large population, impressive economic growth, and potential to continue improving its GDP in the years ahead, Pakistan will always be second-fiddle to its principal adversary in terms of army strength, battle tanks and combat jets. India spent nearly $50 billion on modernizing and building up its armed forces in 2014; Pakistan spent slightly more than $10 billion. The figures are not even close.

And that is why the Pakistani military views its nuclear weapons with such importance. For Islamabad, ensuring that nuclear weapons of all types — from stand-alone strategic weapons to tactical battlefield nukes — are primed and ready for use in a short period of time is a way to keep a vastly more powerful India in check. Unlike India, Islamabad has refused to accept a “no first use” doctrine, meaning that the Pakistani army is authorized to deploy nuclear weapons on the battlefield if the country’s national security is seriously at risk from an Indian incursion. Keeping the nuclear stockpile on stand-by is a way for the Pakistani Government to deter an India that is more populated, wealthier and has more men in uniform.

5. The Bottom Line

Despite all of the attempts from the nuclear non-proliferation community, Pakistan will continue to develop and strengthen its nuclear deterrent as long as the high brass in the Pakistani military continues to have an India-centric mindset in its defense policy. India and Pakistan have fought three wars since Islamabad’s independence in 1947, and in each case, the Pakistanis were the either the losers are forced into a stalemate before acceding to a ceasefire (the 1971 breakaway of eastern Pakistan, which would later be named Bangladesh, was an especially embarrassing defeat for the Pakistanis). Islamabad hasn’t forgotten these cases ever since. And for the Pakistanis, the lessons of these past conflicts are all the same: we cannot repeat history.

India-Pakistan relations remain a sore spot for both nations, from the ongoing and never-ending Kashmir dispute to allegations of meddling in one another’s domestic affairs (India continues to strongly believe that the Inter-Services Intelligence directorate fosters a deep partnership with a number of anti-India terrorist groups, while Islamabad has levied accusations about India’s covert connections with the Pakistani Taliban). With so much bad blood between the two, it’s unfathomable to believe that Pakistan would voluntary cap the number of nuclear warheads or agree to put its entire nuclear program under IAEA supervision. President Obama recognized this dynamic early in his presidency, telling Joe Klein with Time magazine that the Kashmir conflict is a constant irritant to peace in South Asia and that a special U.S. envoy may need to be appointed in order to prod both sides to start negotiating a long-term solution in a serious way. Progress on that front, however, has been nonexistent: violence in Kashmir still flares up occasionally, and with every death, the Indo-Pakistani relationship suffers another blow.

In the current environment, we all better get used to Pakistan becoming the third-largest nuclear weapons state in the world.

Daniel R. DePetris is an analyst at Wikistrat, Inc., a geostrategic consulting firm, and a freelance researcher. He has also written for, Small Wars Journal and The Diplomat.

The Russian And Iraqi Nuclear Horns Grow (Daniel 7)

Deal With Iraq to Fight Islamic State Extends Russia’s Reach in Middle East
Kremlin rivals U.S. for influence in region

By MATT BRADLEY in Beirut and CAROL E. LEE and JAY SOLOMON in New York
Updated Sept. 27, 2015 9:50 p.m. ET

Iraq joined Russia, Iran and Syria in a new agreement to strengthen cooperation against extremist group Islamic State, extending the Kremlin’s reach in the Middle East as it rivals Washington for influence.

U.S. and Russian officials held talks Sunday on the sidelines of a United Nations summit in New York to try to forge a common approach to fighting Islamic State, a day before President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin were to hold their first formal meeting in more than two years at the U.N. The two had an informal encounter in November on the sidelines of a G-20 summit in Australia.

Iraq’s Defense Ministry said Sunday that the country had signed an intelligence and security cooperation pact with Russia, Iran and Syria, pledging to cooperate in collecting information about Islamic State. The deal effectively formalizes years of military collaboration among the four nations, which have intermittently been allies since the 1980s.

The deal is another challenge to U.S. influence in the Middle East at a time when Russia is deploying new military assets—primarily in support of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad—including fighter aircraft and attack helicopters in the coastal region of Syria.

At the same time, the U.S.-led international coalition that has been striking Islamic State targets in Iraq and Syria from the air since last fall is grappling with a series of setbacks.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry met his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov, at the U.N. General Assembly on Sunday in a bid to harmonize military operations in the region, U.S. and Russian officials said.

U.S. officials appeared to be taken by surprise by the announcement of the four-nation security pact and said they were still struggling to understand Mr. Putin’s long-term strategy for the region. Mr. Kerry, they said, kept open the possibility that the White House and Kremlin could coordinate, if not cooperate, in fighting Islamic State.

“We’re just at the beginning of trying to understand what the Russians’ intentions are in Syria, in Iraq, and to try to see if there are mutually beneficial ways forward here,” said a senior U.S. official who attended the Kerry-Lavrov meeting. “We’ve got a long way to go in that conversation.”
Mr. Lavrov put a more positive spin on the meeting, saying the U.S. and Russia could find a convergence of interests fighting Islamic State.

“The fact is that today, John Kerry confirmed that the only aim of the U.S. and the coalition it has formed is to fight terrorists, primarily [Islamic State], which is our aim as well,” the Russian diplomat told state media.

Mr. Putin’s aggressive push into Syria in recent weeks is increasingly marginalizing the White House’s influence over events on the ground, Arab diplomats said.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said late Sunday that he has been in close coordination with Mr. Putin about Russia’s actions in Syria and that they both support an effort to strengthen the Assad regime. “The government in Damascus cannot be weakened,” Mr. Rouhani told a group of American foreign policy experts and journalists in New York.

Washington’s ability to oust Mr. Assad, its stated goal in Syria, is rapidly diminishing, said the Arab diplomats. And any willingness by the White House to collaborate in Syria and Iraq could place it in a de facto alliance with Iran’s Revolutionary Guards and the Lebanese militia Hezbollah, which the U.S. considers a terrorist organization.

“The meeting with Putin is a function of the realities that Putin is creating,” said Dennis Ross, who served as Mr. Obama’s top adviser on the Mideast during his first term. “The Russians are making it pretty clear that nothing is going to happen without them, and they’re putting themselves in the position where we don’t have a lot of choice but to talk to them.”

The new security deal was only the latest example of Iraqi cooperation with Russia, Iran and Syria. Iraq has allowed Russian military transport planes to fly over its airspace to supply Syria with weapons, against the wishes of its American allies.

Russia last year sold jet fighters to Iraq’s air force that were used to bomb Islamic State, after a promised U.S. shipment was delayed. Baghdad is currently negotiating with Moscow to buy more advanced weaponry.

American officials have accused Iraq’s government of allowing Iran to use Iraqi airspace to transport weapons to Mr. Assad. Iraq has denied it. Iranian-backed militias have also played a leading role in the ground fight against Islamic State in Iraq, often failing to coordinate with U.S. officials.
Moscow has long provided conventional weaponry to the military of Mr. Assad, whose resources have been stretched thin after four years of conflict. But in recent weeks, Russia has deployed new military assets to the country, including tanks and fighter aircraft, in what U.S. officials see as a possible prelude to direct military action.

Mr. Putin said he had informed the leaders of Turkey, Jordan and Saudi Arabia about efforts to coordinate the fight against Islamic State, according to remarks released by the Kremlin on Sunday.
“We are offering cooperation to the countries of the region, and we’re attempting to create a kind of coordination structure,” Mr. Putin said, according to an excerpt of an interview with U.S. broadcaster Charlie Rose also released by the Kremlin.

Mr. Putin said the Kremlin had also informed Washington about its ramped-up activities in the Middle East, saying that U.S. and Russian militaries were in communication with each other. But the Russian leader reasserted that his country’s forces were currently in Syria to assist in training and equipping the military of Mr. Assad.

“With regard to our…presence in Syria, it’s at present expressed in the delivery of weaponry to the Syrian government, in the training of personnel and the delivery of humanitarian aid to the Syrian people,” Mr. Putin said.

The White House is looking to Monday’s meeting with Mr. Putin as a decisive moment to determine whether the two leaders can reach a consensus on Syria and Moscow’s role in fighting Islamic State.
Administration officials aren’t expecting a resolution this week. But the meeting is designed to make headway in setting out a formula for a political transition in Syria and for Mr. Obama to gauge whether Russia is willing to relent on its insistence that the U.S.-led coalition fighting Islamic State coordinate with the Assad regime.

By intervening more muscularly in Syria and Iraq, Mr. Putin is directly challenging Mr. Obama’s two core foreign policy objectives for the final year of his presidency: finding a resolution to the multi-sided war in Syria and fine-tuning the fight against Islamic State. Both will feature prominently in Mr. Obama’s address to the U.N. General Assembly on Monday.

Mr. Putin’s moves in Syria and Iraq come at a time when Mr. Obama’s policies have faltered. The dynamic gives Russia significant leverage heading into Monday’s meeting.

The Syria crisis has become the one major foreign policy issue Mr. Obama has left unresolved. Despite years of attempts to reach a solution, Mr. Obama never invested heavily in ending the conflict and has been reluctant to wade too deeply into such efforts. His reluctance is largely based in his belief that there is no solution that wouldn’t pull the U.S. into another open-ended conflict in the region.

White House officials said Mr. Obama had planned to focus more on the conflict after securing the Iran nuclear deal. But Mr. Putin has expedited that shift.

His military buildup in Syria surprised the White House, which wasn’t planning a meeting with the Russian leader in New York until Mr. Putin forced Mr. Obama’s hand by escalating its involvement in Syria.

The administration’s line on the timing of Mr. Assad stepping down has softened in recent weeks. Some officials don’t rule out Mr. Assad remaining in power for several more years as part of an agreement.

A senior administration official acknowledged there is “a new reality” in Syria that has forced Mr. Obama to seek a resolution that allows Mr. Assad to stay in power for a time rather than step down immediately as the White House previously advocated. Russia’s recent moves in Syria helped solidify that shift.

—Nathan Hodge in Moscow contributed to this article.

Write to Matt Bradley at and Nathan Hodge at

The Ramapo Fault Of The Sixth Seal (Rev 6:12)

Earthquake activity in the New York City area
The Ramapo Fault Line
The Ramapo Fault Line

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Although the eastern United States is not as seismically active as regions near plate boundaries, large and damaging earthquakes do occur there. Furthermore, when these rare eastern U.S. earthquakes occur, the areas affected by them are much larger than for western U.S. earthquakes of the same magnitude.[1] Thus, earthquakes represent at least a moderate hazard to East Coast cities, including New York City and adjacent areas of very high population density.

As can be seen in the maps of earthquake activity in this region, seismicity is scattered throughout most of the New York City area, with some hint of a concentration of earthquakes in the area surrounding Manhattan Island. The largest known earthquake in this region occurred in 1884 and had a magnitude of approximately 5. For this earthquake, observations of fallen bricks and cracked plaster were reported from eastern Pennsylvania to central Connecticut, and the maximum intensity reported was at two sites in western Long Island (Jamaica, New York and Amityville, New York). Two other earthquakes of approximately magnitude 5 occurred in this region in 1737 and 1783.[2][3][4] The figure on the right shows maps of the distribution of earthquakes of magnitude 3 and greater that occurred in this region from 1924 to 2010, along with locations of the larger earthquakes that occurred in 1737, 1783 and 1884.


The NYC area is part of the geologically complex structure of the Northern Appalachian Mountains. This complex structure was formed during the past half billion years when the Earth’s crust underlying the Northern Appalachians was the site of two major geological episodes, each of which has left its imprint on the NYC area bedrock.[5][6] Between about 450 million years ago and about 250 million years ago, the Northern Appalachian region was affected by a continental collision, in which the ancient African continent collided with the ancient North American continent to form the supercontinent Pangaea. Beginning about 200 million years ago, the present-day Atlantic ocean began to form as plate tectonic forces began to rift apart the continent of Pangaea. The last major episode of geological activity to affect the bedrock in the New York area occurred about 100 million years ago, during the Mesozoic era, when continental rifting that led to the opening of the present-day Atlantic ocean formed the Hartford and Newark Mesozoic rift basins.

Earthquake rates in the northeastern United States are about 50 to 200 times lower than in California, but the earthquakes that do occur in the northeastern U.S. are typically felt over a much broader region than earthquakes of the same magnitude in the western U.S.[1] This means the area of damage from an earthquake in the northeastern U.S. could be larger than the area of damage caused by an earthquake of the same magnitude in the western U.S.[7] The cooler rocks in the northeastern U.S. contribute to the seismic energy propagating as much as ten times further than in the warmer rocks of California. A magnitude 4.0 eastern U.S. earthquake typically can be felt as far as 100 km (60 mi) from its epicenter, but it infrequently causes damage near its source. A magnitude 5.5 eastern U.S. earthquake, although uncommon, can be felt as far as 500 km (300 mi) from its epicenter, and can cause damage as far away as 40 km (25 mi) from its epicenter. Earthquakes stronger than about magnitude 5.0 generate ground motions that are strong enough to be damaging in the epicentral area.

At well-studied plate boundaries like the San Andreas fault system in California, scientists can often make observations that allow them to identify the specific fault on which an earthquake took place. In contrast, east of the Rocky Mountains this is rarely the case.[8] The NYC area is far from the boundaries of the North American plate, which are in the center of the Atlantic Ocean, in the Caribbean Sea, and along the west coast of North America. The seismicity of the northeastern U.S. is generally considered to be due to ancient zones of weakness that are being reactivated in the present-day stress field. In this model, pre-existing faults that were formed during ancient geological episodes persist in the intraplate crust, and the earthquakes occur when the present-day stress is released along these zones of weakness. The stress that causes the earthquakes is generally considered to be derived from present-day rifting at the Mid-Atlantic ridge.

Earthquakes and geologically mapped faults in the Northeastern U.S.

The northeastern U.S. has many known faults, but virtually all of the known faults have not been active for perhaps 90 million years or more. Also, the locations of the known faults are not well determined at earthquake depths. Accordingly, few (if any) earthquakes in the region can be unambiguously linked to known faults. Given the current geological and seismological data, it is difficult to determine if a known fault in this region is still active today and could produce a modern earthquake. As in most other areas east of the Rocky Mountains, the best guide to earthquake hazard in the northeastern U.S. is probably the locations of the past earthquakes themselves.[9]

The Ramapo fault and other New York City area faults

The Ramapo Fault, which marks the western boundary of the Newark rift basin, has been argued to be a major seismically active feature of this region,[10] but it is difficult to discern the extent to which the Ramapo fault (or any other specific mapped fault in the area) might be any more of a source of future earthquakes than any other parts of the region.[11] The Ramapo Fault zone spans more than 185 miles (300 kilometers) in New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. It is a system of faults between the northern Appalachian Mountains and Piedmont areas to the east.[12] This fault is perhaps the best known fault zone in the Mid-Atlantic region, and some small earthquakes have been known to occur in its vicinity. Recently, public knowledge about the fault has increased – especially after the 1970s, when the fault’s proximity to the Indian Point nuclear plant in New York was noticed.
There is insufficient evidence to unequivocally demonstrate any strong correlation of earthquakes in the New York City area with specific faults or other geologic structures in this region. The damaging earthquake affecting New York City in 1884 was probably not associated with the Ramapo fault because the strongest shaking from that earthquake occurred on Long Island (quite far from the trace of the Ramapo fault). The relationship between faults and earthquakes in the New York City area is currently understood to be more complex than any simple association of a specific earthquake with a specific mapped fault.[13]

A 2008 study argued that a magnitude 6 or 7 earthquake might originate from the Ramapo fault zone,[3] which would almost definitely spawn hundreds or even thousands of fatalities and billions of dollars in damage.[14] Studying around 400 earthquakes over the past 300 years, the study also argued that there was an additional fault zone extending from the Ramapo Fault zone into southwestern Connecticut. As can be seen in the above figure of seismicity, earthquakes are scattered throughout this region, with no particular concentration of activity along the Ramapo fault, or along the hypothesized fault zone extending into southwestern Connecticut.[2][11][15]

Just off the northern terminus of the Ramapo fault is the Indian Point Nuclear Power Plant, built between 1956 and 1960 by Consolidated Edison Company. The plant began operating in 1963, and it has been the subject of a controversy over concerns that an earthquake from the Ramapo fault will affect the power plant. Whether or not the Ramapo fault actually does pose a threat to this nuclear power plant remains an open question.[11]

Sunday, September 27, 2015

The World Must Itself Prepare For ‘Horrific’ (Revelation 15)

Further use of nuclear weapons would be ‘horrific,’ Ban says on International Day

Sculpture depicting St. George slaying the dragon. The dragon is created from fragments of Soviet SS-20 and United States Pershing nuclear missiles. UN Photo/Milton Grant

26 September 2015 – United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today highlighted that 2015 marks the 70th anniversary of the first and last use of a nuclear weapon in war, as he renewed his call for complete global nuclear disarmament.

“The norm against the use of nuclear weapons – the most destructive weapons ever created, with potentially unparalleled human costs – has stood strong for seven decades,” Mr. Ban said in a message for the International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons, observed annually on 26 September.

“But the only absolute guarantee that they are never used again is through their total elimination,” he added.

The UN chief recalled that the international community has proclaimed the goal of a world free of nuclear weapons, but that unfortunately there are growing rifts between Member States about how and when to achieve it.

“This was on stark display during the Review Conference of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons in May of this year,” Mr. Ban noted. “I call on all States to engage constructively to find a way forward.”

He further underlined that the elimination of nuclear weapons would also free up vast amounts of resources that could be used to implement the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, adopted yesterday by world leaders at the General Assembly.

The new framework includes 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that aim to build on the work of the historic Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), to wipe out poverty, fight inequality and tackle climate change over the next 15 years.

“The consequences of any further use of nuclear weapons, whether intentional or by mistake, would be horrific,” Mr. Ban warned, adding that when it comes to the common objective of nuclear disarmament, the global community must act now.



SEPTEMBER 26, 2015

Dustin Wicksell

China is preparing to launch a new class of ballistic missile submarine, and the nuclear-armed warships will give them the capability to target any place within the continental United States by the end of 2015.

The new boats are known as Jin class nuclear-powered submarines, and China has armed them with JL-2 submarine-launched ballistic missiles, according to a statement by the Pentagon’s Defense Intelligence Agency. China currently possesses at least four of the submarines, and Defense Department officials expect them to deploy on their first patrols before the end of the year. According to Bloomberg Business, the agency declined to express its level of confidence that the submarines would take to the sea by the beginning of 2016.

Deploying the submarines comes as a significant step in China’s military development, as the boats are armed with JL-2 missiles. These rockets have an operative range of 4,600 miles (7,403 kilometers), which means they could strike Alaska if launched from Japan, as Business Insider notes. Should one of the submarines move to the East of Hawaii, a JL-2 could potentially target any strategic position within the continental United States.

In a report released in April, the U.S. Office of Naval Intelligence noted that the JL-2 missile nearly triples the range of China’s current strike capability. The sea-launched ballistic missile previously employed by the country only allowed China to strike at targets in its immediate vicinity. Analysts have suggested that JL-2 tests may be ongoing, but Collin Koh Swee Lean, associate research fellow at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies in Singapore, pointed out that there would be little reason for China to send the weapons on patrol if they were not operational.

While the Jin class submarines are impressive warships, reports have circulated that China is constructing an even larger class of missile boat. These new ships are known as the 096 Tang class nuclear-powered submarines, and the fact that their development is moving forward is widely seen as a sign that the JL-2 is in the final stages of testing. When the Tang class submarines are put to sea, they will be capable of carrying 24 missiles, twice the complement afforded to China’s Jin class boats.

America Prepares For War With Russia (Daniel 7)

US Preparing for “Hybrid War” with Russia

Positioning US-NATO Forces on Russia’s Doorstep

By Stephen Lendman
Global Research, September 26, 2015
Region: Europe, Russia and FSU, USA
Theme: US NATO War Agenda

America is a warrior state, waging direct and/or proxy wars at home and abroad throughout its entire history – today on a global scale, with an arsenal of weapons of unimaginable destructive power able to end life on earth, and lunatics in charge perhaps planning to use them.

In September 2010, Stop NATO editor Rick Rozoff said the Pentagon is using the Baltic states as “training grounds for Afghan and future wars.”

After NATO expanded from 16 – 28 members from 1999 – 2009 by adding all former Warsaw Pact countries, including former Soviet republics Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, Washington used their territory for military bases, troop and weapons deployments, regional “air patrols and the initial stages of a continent-wide anti-ballistic missile system beyond” NATO plans for an Active Layered Theatre Ballistic Missile Defence Programme.

Positioning US and other NATO forces near Russia’s border violated the 1991 (ratified) Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE), limiting “several categories of conventional military equipment in Europe,” Rozoff explained.

New NATO members Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland were “transformed into training grounds for the Pentagon’s and NATO’s wars abroad” – including potential confrontation with Russia, regular large-scale military exercises conducted for this purpose, literally readying for possible WW III.
Large numbers of US-led NATO troop deployments and provocative military exercises close to Russia’s borders should scare everyone. Last spring, US-installed NATO Secretary-General Jens Stolenberg said dealing with Russia requires “a strong collective alliance” – code language for preparing for military confrontation?

He, US officials and other Western ones consistently lie about nonexistentRussian aggression” in Ukraine, as well as deploying troops and warplanes in Syria.

Moscow threatens no one. It’s the continent’s leading peacemaker. Washington threatens world peace, security and stability. Its permanent war agenda risks the unthinkable – possible nuclear armageddon.
On September 25, Sputnik News and RT International both discussed German newspaper Deutsche Wirtschafts Nachrichten’s (DWN) report about Washington preparing for possible hybrid war with Russia in the Baltics region – focusing on irregular troop deployments, destabilization, provocative rallies and cyber attacks.

Former US Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Michele Flournoy was quoted, saying “Russia’s (nonexistent) invasion of Eastern Ukraine urged the US to dust off its emergency plans. They were pretty outdated.”

Washington’s coup followed by orchestrated Kiev aggression on Donbass is used as a pretext to blame Moscow for their crimes – the Big Lie repeated ad nauseam by Western officials and media scoundrels, knowingly and willfully turning truth on its head as part of a longstanding plan to marginalize, weaken, contain, isolate, destabilize and weaken Russia, America’s key rival along with China.

DWN said hyping a “Russian threat” is used to justify deploying large numbers of heavily armed US troops in Eastern Europe, hold large-scale provocative war games near its borders and get NATO nations to increase military spending.

German ZDF television reported US plans to position powerful B61 thermonuclear bombs at the Luftwaffe’s Buchel Air Base. It’s Germany’s only military base with US nuclear weapons already – 20 since 2007.

Putin spokesman Dmitry Peskov responded, calling Washington’s intention a “violation of the strategic balance in Europe…And without a doubt, it would demand that Russia take necessary countermeasures to restore the strategic balance and parity.”

An unnamed Russian “military-diplomatic” source said Moscow may respond by deploying Iskander-M tactical missiles in Kaliningrad, its Eastern European enclave bordering Lithuania and Poland.

“The issue is being studied,” the source said. “A final decision will be made after a detailed analysis of the potential threats.”

In 2010, Bundestag opposition members called for removing US nuclear weapons from German territory entirely. At the time, Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said “(t)he time is right for a new beginning on nuclear disarmament.” Polls show strong anti-nuclear public sentiment.
Former German Defense Ministry Parliamentary State Secretary Willy Wimmer told ZDF television Washington’s plan to deploy B61s to Buchel gives it “new attack options against Russia.” It’s “a conscious (anti-Russian) provocation…”

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova told ZDF “(t)he comprehensive analysis of the situation points to the threat posed by the increasing military capability of NATO and its endowment with global functions, which it performs in violation of the international law, as well as the encroachment of the military infrastructure of NATO members on the borders of the Russian Federation.”

America positioning nuclear weapons on European territory breaches NPT’s letter and spirit – prohibiting the transfer of nuclear weapons to non-nuclear states.

Washington’s claim about them being under US control doesn’t wash. Most important is their potential use, the risk of nuclear war, the top priority for world leaders to avoid at all costs.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at

His new book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”

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Antichrist Calls for Baghdad Protests (Revelation 13:18)

Shiite leader calls for Baghdad protests after Eid

By RUDAW 15 hours ago

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region – Shiite firebrand leader Muqtada al-Sadr called on Iraqis and his party’s followers to resume demonstrations against the Iraqi government after the Eid of Sacrifice ends tomorrow.

“Next Friday, Iraqis should pour into streets to call for the implementing of reforms and reiterate their demands from the government,” said Sadr in a statement on Saturday.

He added: “We call on all Iraqis to abide by the demonstration laws to secure the lives of protesters.”
In the past, Sadr has called on his followers to take to the streets in protest. On August 24, the prominent Shiite leader officially called on his people to demonstrate in the capital.
“We announce to all people, and to the Sadrists in particular, the need to participate in protests this Friday in Baghdad,” a Sadr spokesperson said. “The Sadrist participants should merge with the other protesters in a single, national Iraqi crucible.”

Protesters in Baghdad took to the streets about four months ago, demanding the government fight corruption and punish officials guilty of graft.

Following the protests, Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi announced a series of cost-cutting reforms, slashing deputy positions in the presidency and premiership as well as in government. He also reduced the excessive number of official bodyguards.