Biden's policies are set to diminish America's role in the Middle East as the Bible has predicted. He has surrounded himself with some anti-Israel advisers, and both Israel and the Arab states are looking to build ties to counter the effect.
Joe Biden’s presidency is just over a week old, and seismic shifts in political policy have already taken place.
One of Biden’s first acts was to rejoin the Paris Climate Accord. He cancelled the Keystone XL Pipeline which had the immediate result of eliminating over 1000 construction jobs in both the United States and Canada. Following this, the Biden administration issued a 60-day ban on oil and gas leases and permits on federal land and waters.
The Hindu news reported a statement from Jake Sullivan, Biden’s new U.S. National Security Advisor:
“It occurs to me something that Joe Biden has really reinforced for us, which is that foreign policy is domestic policy and domestic policy is foreign policy. And at the end of the day, right now, the most profound national security challenge facing the United States is getting our own house in order, is domestic renewal,” Mr Sullivan said.
The administration recognizes the domestic agenda definitely affects foreign policy. Others in the US government recognize the same fact, and are very concerned with the direction things are going. Biden’s policy changes with regards to energy have been heavily criticized as putting North America’s energy independence at risk.
Governor Pete Ricketts of Nebraska issued the following statement:
Keystone XL is a critical part of putting together an all-of-the-above strategy for North American energy independence,” said Gov. Ricketts. “Failure to construct the pipeline would mean more dependence on overseas energy sources as well as fewer jobs and less property tax relief for Nebraskans. This is a project that would greatly benefit not just Nebraska but also our whole country, and it is our hope that TC Energy presses forward.
According to the Forbes:
Almost a quarter of US oil production and 12 percent of natural gas production takes place on federal land and water….
For the last 11 years, the long term increases in domestic production fueled by hydraulic fracturing has carried the United States toward net exporter status and energy independence. America is now the world’s largest hydrocarbon producer. This trend has seen US imports from the OPEC oil cartel plummet from over six million barrels per day to slightly under 700 thousand….
With independence comes the liberty to take moral stances otherwise viewed as bad for business, something Democrats should remember if they intend to confront Saudi Arabia, Russia, Iran and Venezuela.
If the United States cedes its hard-fought oil market share, it is certain others will seek to fill the gap. Already Russia and Saudi Arabia have scrapped for dominance, and Iran and Qatar remain joint owners of the world’s largest natural gas field.. The yielded revenue would go to America’s geopolitical rivals, where democratic norms are trampled, environmental standards are limited and enforcement is lax.
Line ups for gasoline in the 1979 Oil Crisis
America’s energy independence is what has given it the luxury to extract itself from the pressure of the Arab states. In 1973 the Arab oil producing countries proclaimed an oil embargo at nations perceived as aiding Israel during the Yom Kippur war. Oil was used as a weapon. A global recession resulted, and tensions between the US and Europe skyrocketed. In 1979 the Carter Administration was put over a barrel with the cost of oil skyrocketing, bringing America to its knees once again. Since that time America has been looking to create energy independence.
In December 2018, America became a net exporter of “oil”, breaking nearly 75 continuous years of dependence on foreign oil. President Trump used this change in America’s dependence on the Arab world to change the negotiation tactics America would use. It recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, recognized the Golan Heights, and gave legitimacy of the Settlements throughout Judea and Samaria. It used it’s new found upper hand to push forward the Abraham Accords and change the status-quo in the Middle East that had existed since Israel’s formation.
The socialist and environmentalist agenda of Biden’s administration is pushing the country in an entirely different direction. His policies are largely “reactionary” against the Trump presidency. In an interview with Fox News, former US Ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley stated the following regarding America’s foreign and domestic policy:
“This is about being smart and what Biden is showing is he’s more interested in reversing everything President Trump did than being strategic in how we keep America strong going forward.”
Why Must America Diminish?
It is too early to chart the course of the new American Administration. What we do know is the end result. At the time of the end America will be weakened and unable to prevent the invasion of the land as described in Joel, Zechariah, Ezekiel 38&39, Daniel and Revelation.
The current “change in policy” is clearly the hand of the Lord working in the nations to bring about his will. This has been how the angels have worked since the beginning of time. Remember the hostility of the nations when Israel went into the land, this was “of the Lord” as Joshua 11 describes:
“Joshua made war a long time with all those kings. There was not a city that made peace with the children of Israel, save the Hivites the inhabitants of Gibeon: all other they took in battle. For it was of the Lord to harden their hearts, that they should come against Israel in battle, that he might destroy them utterly, and that they might have no favour, but that he might destroy them, as the Lord commanded Moses.” (Joshua 11:18–20, KJV 1900)
The angelic hand was at work to move the nations against Israel, so God could deal with them according to his divine will. Consider the words of Jeremiah 18:
“O house of Israel, cannot I do with you as this potter? saith the Lord. Behold, as the clay is in the potter’s hand, so are ye in mine hand, O house of Israel. At what instant I shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up, and to pull down, and to destroy it; If that nation, against whom I have pronounced, turn from their evil, I will repent of the evil that I thought to do unto them.” (Jeremiah 18:6–8)
There are times when God speaks against a nation to pull it down. God points out that it is His prerogative to change His mind if they repent. He is not a legalist, he is looking for an end result. It is God that will bring the Gogian confederacy down into the land, and weaken the Western nations so they are powerless to intervene in the latter times. He does this for a specific reason:
“Thus will I magnify myself, and sanctify myself; and I will be known in the eyes of many nations, and they shall know that I am the Lord.” (Ezekiel 38:23)
The Effect of Change
The effects of the changed situation in the Middle East are already clearly being seen. America may be taking a different course, but the new situation in the Middle East is already bringing great dividends. Reuters reported the speed of trade growth in the region this past Saturday:
The trade between Dubai and Israel has reached 1 billion dirham ($272 million USD) over the last five months, the Dubai media office said on Saturday. Israel and the United Arab Emirates agreed in August to normalise diplomatic relations.
Even the AI Monitor, (founded by the Syrian-American Jamal Daniel), had to acknowledge:
The thesis that the Abraham Accords are a partial realization of the Trump administration’s “deal of the century” is gaining momentum, as by the close economic ties emerging between Israel, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Bahrain, and through them, Saudi Arabia, too….
Masdar CEO Mohamed Jameel Al Ramahi told the press, “The UAE and Israel are opening a new era of cooperation in renewable energy and advanced technology, which will benefit both peoples and support our targets for clean energy.”
Chairman of the Israel Export Institute, Adiv Baruch, told Al-Monitor that ties with the UAE and the ensuing investments are one of the most important developments to advance the Israeli economy. These countries are centers of international finance and trade, which connect us with regional giants like Saudi Arabia and the enormous business world in the Far East…. he also pointed out that the Export Institute’s estimates for the last two months of 2020 alone show $1 billion in investments between Israel and the UAE.
It is interesting to note a lot of the investment surrounds agricultural technology. The Bible speaks of Israel’s success in this area when describing
“the people that are gathered out of the nations, which have gotten cattle and goods, that dwell in the midst of the land.” (Ezekiel 38:12)
Added to this are the prophecies of the revival of the land. This is God’s doing:
“Then will the Lord be jealous for his land, And pity his people. Yea, the Lord will answer and say unto his people, Behold, I will send you corn, and wine, and oil, And ye shall be satisfied therewith: And I will no more make you a reproach among the heathen:” (Joel 2:18–19)
Prophecies like this are in embryonic fulfillment and are practically working out in the technologies that have been developed. They are so successful that they become part of the attraction to the Gogian host as Ezekiel describes in verses 12 and 13 of chapter 38.
Fallout from Iran’s Nuclear Deal
Biden, Jack Sullivan (his national security advisor), and Robert Malley (his newly appointed special envoy to Iran) have made it clear that one of the top priorities of the new administration is Iran.
The Financial Post reported on Friday about this top diplomat Robert Malley:
Robert Malley, who has faced sharp criticisms from Republican lawmakers, will be tasked with trying to get Iran back to the negotiating table on its nuclear program.
The Guardian stated:
Malley was a key member of former Barack Obama’s team that negotiated the nuclear accord with Iran and world powers, an agreement that Donald Trump abandoned in 2018.
It also pointed out his background:
Malley, the son of an Egyptian journalist and Iran expert, was an informal adviser to Obama’s 2008 campaign but resigned after it emerged he had met representatives of the Palestinian militant group Hamas while working for the International Crisis Group.
Malley was later brought into the Obama administration, in which Biden served as vice president, as a top Middle East adviser.
Malley’s father, Simon, came from an Egyptian-Syrian Jewish family. He supported Gamal Abdul Naser’s revolution in Egypt, and was a founding member of the Egyptian communist party. Simon Malley was a friend and confidante of Yasir Arafat, a supporter of various terrorist groups such as Algeria’s FLN, and a rabid enemy of Israel. Simon Malley lived in France from 1969 to 1980 where he published the magazine Africasia. According to his obituary published by the Guardian:
He saw himself and the magazine as advocates of newly independent states like Algeria and Egypt, and for liberation struggles throughout the world, most notably the Palestinians.
He was ordered to leave the country on suspect of engaging in clandestine pro-Soviet activities, and due to his hostility towards the west and Israel. That is Malley’s father.
His was Mother Barbara (née Silverstein) Malley, a New Yorker who worked for the United Nations delegation of the leftist Algerian National Liberation Front (FLN). After marrying Simon Malley she co-published Africasia.
The Publication CAMERA (The Committee for accuracy in Middle East Reporting and Analysis) stated the following:
Malley’s parents were rabidly anti-Israel and counted Yasir Arafat as a personal friend. Indeed, Arafat was among those “leaders” (for want of a better word) who intervened with the French government to readmit the Malley family to France after they had been expelled for their radical activities.
One of his fellow law students was Barak Obama, who he would later work for. His own leanings are clear as the Jewish Star published:
Malley was reputedly fired as a member of Obama’s campaign staff for having secret meetings with Hamas, but in fact he was a willing sacrificial lamb to make Obama look good.
Malley was anti-Israel, the stance was demonstrated by some of his “greatest hits,” op-eds which trashed the Jewish state and supported the terrorist cause, including:
“Making the Best of Hamas’ Victory” (Baltimore Sun, Feb. 19, 2006), in which Malley called for the showering of international aid on a Hamas-led government and for international engagement with Hamas.
“Rebuilding a Damaged Palestine” (New York Times, May 7, 2002), in which he blames Israel’s security operations for weakening Palestinian security forces and calls for international forces to restrain the Israelis.
This background gives a pretty clear idea of where Malley’s allegiance’s lie. These are the kinds of people Joe Biden (who knows his background completely), chooses to surround himself with, and sets his policy by.
The Arab News, (An English-language daily newspaper in Saudi Arabia), reported the following about the policies of Biden:
…the incoming US administration, even before formally taking office, is apparently repeating the same mistakes made by the Obama administration. These continuous Democratic blunders fuel tensions in the region and provide an opportunity for Iran to step up its hostile behavior via the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and its deployment of loyalist militias.
The mistaken beliefs of the incoming Biden administration are not only dangerous, but are also based on groundless goodwill. If Biden’s administration rejoined the nuclear deal and lifted the unilateral US sanctions imposed on Tehran, what would compel the Iranian regime to engage in further negotiations, particularly in relation to its missiles program and hostile regional behavior?
ABC News picked up on opposition to Biden’s policy from both Democratic and Republicans, and from Israel and the Sunni Arab’s:
But Biden also faces pressure both from Democrats and Republican opponents of the Iran deal. They don't want the U.S. to throw away the leverage of sanctions until Iran is made to address other items objectionable to Israel, Sunni Arab neighbors, and the United States. That includes Iran's ballistic missiles and substantial and longstanding intervention in Syria, Yemen, Lebanon and Iraq. Biden promises to deal with all that too.
Time will tell how he deals with the issues surrounding Iran. What interests us is the fact that Israel and the Sunni Arabs are on the same side of the table when it comes to Iran.
To make things worse, Biden has been backtracking on security commitments to Saudi Arabia and the UAE, as the Middle East Monitor reported:
The US administration of President Joe Biden has temporarily suspended the sale of arms to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, in a significant move against the two US allies and in opposition to the preferential treatment given to the Gulf states by former President Donald Trump.
In a White House press conference yesterday, the new Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced that he was reviewing the commitments guaranteed by the US towards Arab states who had normalised ties with Israel, despite praising and endorsing those agreements.
Under Biden's temporary measure, the landmark sale of 50 F-35 fighter jets to Abu Dhabi and the other arms sales to Riyadh have all been put on hold.
The move is sending shockwaves through America’s Sunni allies, causing them to wonder what is coming next from America. To add to this Biden has suspended sanctions against Saudi Arabia’s enemies in Yemen, the Houthis:
On Monday, Biden suspended some of Trump's sanctions against the Houthis.
This swing of the pendulum is reminiscent of Obama’s great “reset.” Ultimately, the effect of the reset was to push the Arab states and Israel into a formerly undreamt of security alliance. Common enemies can create unlikely friendships. Follow the Abraham Accords, these security alliances have also become economic alliances with many of the players.
Israel, the Arabs and Iran
The geopolitical intelligence publication, Stratfor, provided the following analysis on Israel’s response to Biden’s renewed Iran initiatives:
Israel is ratcheting up pressure on Iran and the United States as it publicly prepares a military option against Tehran’s nuclear program that would risk triggering a larger regional conflict. On Jan. 25, the chief of staff of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), Lt. Gen. Aviv Kochavi, said that the Israeli military was refreshing its plans for a strike on Iran to supplement Israel’s current strategy. Kochavi said the IDF would develop the plans over the next year. The IDF reportedly requested $918 million to supplement its annual budget from the Knesset to develop military options for an Iran strike.
Before Biden took office, the Arab states made clear their thoughts. CNBC reported the following on January 22:
The United Arab Emirates said it was “absolutely” in favor of continuing to pressure Iran — a policy by the Trump administration aimed at forcing the regime to halt its nuclear activities and cut off support for militants in the Middle East.
A UAE representative stated:
“I think we are still in favor of maximum pressure — absolutely,” said Omar Ghobash, the UAE’s assistant minister for culture and public diplomacy.
Regarding the Obama Nuclear agreement, he pointed out:
“It didn’t take our concerns into account, and it treated us as bystanders and spectators when we felt that it was directly concerned with our security,” Ghobash said.
The same article reported Saudi Arabia’s position:
Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister in November also told CNBC that the kingdom should be included in any negotiations between the U.S. and Iran.
A new agreement should limit Iran’s nuclear activities but also address its “regional malign activity,” the minister said at the time. Saudi Arabia and Iran have been wrestling for dominance in the region for decades.
Israel has taken steps to bolster security of its neighbours in the region. It has allowed the US to install its Iron Dome missile defense system in the Gulf region, Haaretz daily reported on Sunday.
The United States is expected to soon begin deploying Iron Dome missile interceptor batteries, one of the jewels of Israel's arms manufacturing industry, in its bases in the Gulf States, according to security officials.
This comes against the backdrop of the Abraham Accords between Israel and two Gulf States, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, and of two large U.S. arms deals, one with the UAE, and the other with Saudi Arabia.
Because of the sensitivity of the matter for the Americans, Israeli officials are refusing to reveal in which countries the Iron Dome interceptors will be deployed. But behind closed doors, Israel gave its tacit agreement to the Americans to place the batteries in order to defend its forces from attacks by Iran and its proxies, according to Israeli officials.
The relationship between the Sunni Arab States and Israel are continuing to develop. If America backs away, or becomes hostile to the Saudi’s or Israel’s, or even just becomes apathetic to their security, they will look more to each other bolster their security.
What we are seeing is the angels at work, bringing about the right conditions for the time of the end. As we see the end approaching we need to prepare ourselves for the Lord’s soon return, when his saints will be gathered to him, ready to remove the corrupt governments of the world and establish the Kingdom of God on earth:
“But that which ye have already hold fast till I come. And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations: And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father. And I will give him the morning star. He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the ecclesias.” (Revelation 2:25–29)
This has been Jonathan Bowen joining you. Tune in next week for another edition of The Bible in the News.