Monday, August 6, 2012

Dear Pastors:

I am in a Marriott near Pacolet, South Carolina, where I am in meetings with Dr. Bill Pickel and the good people of Calvary Hill Baptist Church.  We had very good meetings yesterday AM and PM where the LORD gave me strength to speak three times.  It has been quite some time since I have been impressed with the spirituality of a people, as I was yesterday with these folks.  It is a church which has a ‘great emphasis’ on soul winning and standards.  I like both those traits!

I am up early this AM.  I read my Bible and prayed, but miss the Bride of my youth.  Pray for her physical condition so we can get something resolved on her  knee-hip-back problem!
Now, let me mention the news this morning from the Mediterranean on the side of Israel down by Egypt’s border.

The Associated Press says, "Egypt deployed helicopter gunships to the Sinai Peninsula on Monday to hunt for the militants who killed 16 soldiers at a checkpoint along the border with Israel, according to security and military officials. Israel meanwhile stepped up pressure on Egypt to clamp down on the lawless border zone.
The officials said two attack helicopters had been sent and more were expected to arrive in the border town of El-Arish as Egyptian security forces prepared to sweep the region, which has experienced a surge of violence since the ouster of Hosni Mubarak’s regime last year.

Suspected Islamists attacked the checkpoint on Sunday, killing the soldiers before stealing two of their vehicles and bursting through a security fence into Israel. Israeli officials say the attack was quickly spotted, hit with an airstrike, and at least eight militants were killed.
Egypt and Israel say both Islamist militants from the Sinai and Palestinian allies from the neighboring Gaza Strip are active in the northern Sinai, attacking both Egyptian security forces and staging raids across the border into Israel. This attack was one of the deadliest in years.

"The unrest in the Sinai poses a daunting challenge to Egypt’s Islamist President Mohammed Morsi, who since coming to office a little more than a month ago has warmed up to Gaza’s Hamas rulers. Hamas officials have condemned the killing of the Egyptian soldiers, but Morsi may still come under pressure to back down from plans to end Egypt’s cooperation with the Israeli blockade of the Gaza Strip.

He vowed on Sunday night to make the killers pay for their crime and to restore security to Sinai, home to several of the most popular Red Sea resorts in Egypt. On Monday, he declared three days of mourning for the victims, according to state television.

The Sinai border has been largely quiet for most of the three decades since Israel and Egypt signed a peace agreement, although security forces have for years combated a low-level insurgency in El-Arish and nearby areas. The 1979 treaty restricts the number of troops and the type of weapons Egypt can deploy there.
The peninsula has experienced a security vacuum since Mubarak’s overthrow in February 2011, and both cross-border and other insurgent attacks have increased. Israel has agreed in the past to Egypt sending reinforcements to bolster its forces there, but the Egyptian officials did not say whether Israel had signed off on the helicopter deployment.

The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the media.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday paid an unannounced visit to the site where the militants broke through, praising Israeli security forces for their swift and effective response and expressing regret for the loss of the Egyptian lives.
"Israel and Egypt have a shared interest in maintaining a quiet border,’’ Netanyahu said. ‘‘But when talking about the security of Israeli citizens, Israel must and will rely only on itself,’’ he added.

Other Israeli officials gave more details of the attack and their response.
Brig. Gen. Yoav Mordechai told Army Radio that after killing the soldiers, the militants seized a truck and an armored car, then blew up one of the vehicles to punch a hole through a security fence to enter Israel. He said the gunmen were armed with explosive devices, submachine guns and grenades.

He said that Israeli intelligence services had reports of impending infiltration and sent aircraft to strike as the militants broke through. ‘‘We were prepared for it, so there was a hit,’’ he said. The military ‘‘averted a major attack on southern Israel,’’ he added.
In a video clip released by the military, Israeli military chief Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz said the incident was over within 15 minutes on the Israeli side. Defense Minister Ehud Barak told parliament that eight militants were killed by Israeli forces who struck from the air, as well as with tanks and artillery.

The attack was the third cross-border infiltration since Mubarak’s overthrow.  In one, in August 2011, eight Israelis were killed. Israel is building a fence along the border to block militants as well as illegal African migrants, but also wants Egypt to crack down harder on the border region.
"We hope this will be a fitting wakeup call for the Egyptians to take things in hand on their side more forcefully,’’ Barak told parliament’s foreign affairs and defense committee on Monday.

Egypt-Israel relations have always been cool but since Mubarak was overthrown and Islamists rose to power, Israeli officials have expressed concern that ties would further deteriorate. Israel is particularly concerned that Egypt will ease restrictions on entering and leaving the Gaza Strip."

Now, Brethren, if  America had paid attention to its Ambassador to Germany back in 1934, William E. Dodd, a great historian [who was not in the "inner club" of State Department Ambassadors, because he was not a wealthy man], possibly six million Jews’ lives could have been saved; although, at the time, the little Austrian Paper-hanger and his cutthroats were already killing Jews.

 Saturday  June 30, 1934, was a fateful day in Germany’s history - a blistering hot, drought filled day, much like the Southwestern US is today.  Captain Ernst Rohm, a homosexual and head of Hitler’s Sturm Abteilung [Stormtroopers, abbreviated SA], was intent on knocking Hitler out of power, using President Paul von Beneckendorff und von Hindenburg, who was officially in charge of its military.
But, Ambassador Dodd’s detractors in the State Department in D.C. worked against his reports.  So, on that fateful Saturday, Hitler with his driver Kempka and armed men in two large black cars arrived at the Hotel Hanselbauer where Rohm and his SA boys lay asleep in their beds from a night of ‘sodomite frolicking’ and arrested all of them.

New York Times correspondent Frederick Birchall was awakened early that Saturday morning with the news that "Apparently a lot of people are being shot."  Massed volleys of gunfire came from the courtyard of the old cadet school where the SA were based in the otherwise peaceful enclave of Gross-Lichterfelde.
Hermann Goring, creator of the rival Gestapo needed no order from Hitler to gather discriminating evidence against Captain Rohm.  At Goring’s palace, an SA man sat quaking with fear, having just been told by Goring that he was to be shot.  Goring’s instructions were "Shoot them!....Take a whole company...Shoot them...Shoot them at once" 

At a press conference later that fateful Saturday Goring stated that Rohm was under arrest [it isn’t clear whether they had actually executed him at that moment, or not], and that "For weeks we have been watching; we knew that some of the leaders of the Sturm Abteilung [SA] had taken positions very far from the aims and goals of our Nazi movement, giving priority to their own interests and ambitions, indulging their unfortunate and perverse tastes.  The Supreme Leader [Hitler] and I as his deputy in Berlin have struck with lightning speed without respect for persons."
So ended what might have been the SA revolt to overthrow Hitler.  Had it happened, ole jav in 2012 thinks President Hindenburg and the military would have taken over the government and the European involvement in the Second World War thwarted.  You cannot sell any potatoes, remember, on my opinions.

But, it is all interesting to me, in light of what we see this August coming out of Egypt with the Muslim Brotherhood’s attacks on Southern Israel.  Pray for the Peace of Jerusalem and the security of the Jews in Israel.

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