Prophecy Update 5-23-19
It happened right as the MASSIVE Binary Asteroid went passed the Earth! – 8.0Mw Quake
Amir Tsarfati: Middle East Update, May 25, 2019
Published on May 25, 2019
Amir LIVE discussing the upcoming elections for the EU parliament, the situation in Syria, the Persian Gulf and more!
LATEST WORLD NEWS – ARTICLES MONDAY MAY 27th 2019
John 8:32 And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free
“My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge” (Hosea 4:6)
1Cor. 12:3 Wherefore I give you to understand, that no man speaking by the Spirit of God calleth Jesus accursed: AND THAT NO MAN CAN SAY THAT JESUS IS THE LORD, BUT BY THE HOLY GHOST.
Eph. 1:13 In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,
Eph. 3:5 Which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men, as it is now revealed unto his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit;
Eph. 4:30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption
Luke 12:37 Blessed are those servants, whom the lord when he cometh shall find watching: verily I say unto you, that he shall gird himself, and make them to sit down to meat, and will come forth and serve them
PUT YOUR TRUST AND FAITH IN JESUS CHRIST (OUR SAVIOUR):
(Romans 12:2) to seek God’s will, the Lord says, “Do not worry about what you’ll eat or drink or wear. But seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness and all these things will be given to you as well”
DAILY CHRISTIAN BIBLICAL QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS:
WHY DOES GOD LOVE US?
QUESTION: I have been a born again Christian for about 7 months now and have taken to the scriptures like crazy reading and learning. One thing I have not been able to clearly understand in all my reading so far is why man is God’s greatest creation. I understand we were made in His image and he actually breathed life into us but how are we actually a more prized creation than say angels for example? They have free will just as we do from what I understand, yet God gave us (man) a way to find redemption where as the angels did not after rebellion. Can you clarify how we are a more prized creation than any other?
ANSWER: As you’ve said God created us in His own image and personally breathed life into us. He considers us to be His work of art, has expressed a love for us that’s unique in all creation, and provided the means for our redemption when we sinned, even allowing us to be adopted into His own family to share in His inheritance. The Bible clearly says this of us in passages like John 3:16, Galatians 4:4-7, and Ephes. 2:8-10 but doesn’t offer any explanation as to why God feels this way about us.
IF GOD IS LOVE, WHY DOES HE KILL PEOPLE?
QUESTION: I have a question which I hope you can answer for me please, How would you answer someone who asked ; “If God in the New Testament is a God of love, how does that reconcile with God in the Old Testament who authorizes the killing of women and children – how is that love ?
ANSWER: God is love, but He’s also righteous and just. Rejecting Him is a sin and the punishment is death. Those Old Testament deaths He authorized were of pagan idol worshipers who had rejected Him in favor of false gods even though He had waited patiently for them to come back to Him. For example He gave the Amorites 400 years to repent before sending the Israelites to judge them (Genesis 15:16). The women who died were adults and were responsible for their beliefs. The children went to a place of comfort to await the coming of the Lord.
At the End of the Age billions more will choose to die rather than acknowledge Him as their Creator, even though out of love He sent His Son to die in their place so they could live. You can’t blame God for any of this.
LOVE THE LORD OR LOVE THE WORLD?
QUESTION: In today’s world and in my opinion, it seems as though the word disciple is being flaunted as a bait word to attract a lot of fish. And yet my conclusion of what I see is that a lot of churches consider going to church, taking discipleship classes, maybe doing some community service, etc. as a way to become a disciple. It’s almost like to become a disciple, it’s okay to have your cake and eat it too. It’s like they’re all saying, Luke 14:33 doesn’t really mean what it says.
“So therefore, any one of you who does not renounce all that he has cannot be my disciple.”
Is this to be taken literally or spiritually? For many years now I’ve long desired (spiritually) to be a “true disciple” but don’t consider myself one because I have not denounced all that I have (physically). And I get so frustrated when I hear Pastors, in particular, saying that “we will make disciples out of you” and yet, the church goes on as it always has. Please help as my prayer is to be able to really share the real Truth in this matter with others.
ANSWER: I don’t believe that Jesus requires a vow of poverty from everyone who wants to be His disciple. What He wants is that there be nothing more important in our lives than Him. The Bible contains numerous examples of people who were well off and yet were faithful followers of God. Psalm 37:4 says that when we delight ourselves in the Lord He’ll give us the desires of our heart. And Jesus said that He came so that we could have life and have it abundantly (John 10:10). It’s when our quest for material wealth preoccupies us or becomes the true source of our security or even an object of worship that we get into trouble.
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WORLD PROPHETIC NEWS CLIPS/ARTICLES PRESENTATION – MONDAY MAY 27th 2019
MIDDLE EAST WAR LOOMING THE BUILD UP TO PSALM 83 – ISAIAH 17 AND GOG OF MAGOG WARS EZEKIEL 38:
WHERE WE ARE CURRENTLY IN SCRIPTURE
Matt. 24:6 And ye shall hear of WARS AND RUMOURS OF WARS: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.
Matt. 24:7 FOR NATION SHALL RISE AGAINST NATION, AND KINGDOM AGAINST KINGDOM: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.
Matt. 24:8 All these are the beginning of sorrows
MAJOR WARS ON THE HORIZON
WORLD WAR 3
Matt. 24:6 And ye shall hear of WARS AND RUMOURS OF WARS:
Matt. 24:7 FOR NATION SHALL RISE AGAINST NATION, AND KINGDOM AGAINST KINGDOM:
ISAIAH 17/PSALM 83:
THE DESTRUCTION OF DAMASCUS and
Muslim Countries in the Middle East will launch an attack on Israel
PROPHECY OF ELAM – (Attack on Iran’s Nuclear Program
EZEKIEL 38 & 39
by Michael Peck
Yes, this could happen.
As always with the Arab-Israeli (or Iranian-Israeli) conflict, the real danger isn’t the regional conflict, but how it might escalate. In the 1973 war, the Soviets threatened to send troops to Egypt unless Israel agreed to a cease-fire. The United States responded by going on nuclear alert.
Could Israeli air strikes in Syria trigger war between Israel and Russia?
Israel remains determined to continue pounding Iranian forces in Syria in a bid to keep Tehran’s forces away from Israel’s northern border. At the same time, Russia has thousands of troops in Syria that could be caught in the crossfire—or even become belligerents if Moscow tires of its Syrian ally being pummeled.
And if Israel and Russia come to blows, would Israel’s big brother—the United States—feel compelled to intervene?
Israel’s policy boils down to this: it will do whatever it sees as necessary to eject Iranian forces from Syria. And if Russia doesn’t like it, then that’s just the price of ensuring that Syria doesn’t become another Iranian rocket base on Israel’s border.
“No one in Israel is confused about who the Russians are and who they are aligned with,” said the IDF official, who spoke on condition of anonymity. “The Russians are not our allies, to put it mildly. We have one ally, and that is the United States. The Russians are here for totally different objectives. They are supporting a regime [Syria] that has an outspoken goal of annihilating Israel if it only could. They are also part of a coalition that supports Iran.”
Just how easily Israeli military operations can trigger an incident became evident during a September 2018 strike on ammunition depots in western Syria. Anti-aircraft missiles launched by Syrian gunners accidentally shot down a Russian Il-20 surveillance aircraft, killing fifteen people. Israel denies Russian accusations that it deliberately used the Russian plane as cover, or failed to give Moscow sufficient warning of the raid. Yet Russia still blamed Israel for the mishap and retaliated by supplying advanced S-300 anti-aircraft missiles to Syria.
Still, the Kremlin has denounced Israeli strikes in Syria as “illegitimate.” Syria has been a Russian ally for more than fifty years, and it was Russian air strikes—along with Iranian and Hezbollah troops—that saved Syrian president Bashar al-Assad’s faltering regime from ISIS and other rebel groups. At least 63,000 Russian troops have served in Syria since 2015. Though Putin has promised since 2016 that Russian forces would withdraw, Russia currently retains more than 5,000 troops and private military contractors in Syria, backed by several dozen aircraft and helicopters.
And Russia is in Syria to stay. The Syrian port of Tartus is Russia’s only naval base in the Mediterranean: in 2016, Moscow and Damascus signed a forty-nine-year agreement that allows nuclear-powered Russian warships to operate from there. In addition, Russian aircraft and surface-to-air missiles, including the long-range S-400 air defense system, operate from at least two air bases in western Syria.
Israeli officials warn of Tehran’s plan to station 100,000 Iranian and allied troops in Syria. Hezbollah, with its estimated arsenal of 130,000-plus rockets, already menaces Israel’s Lebanon frontier. Syria joining Lebanon as a second Iranian rocket base is the stuff of Israeli nightmares.
To be clear, the IDF is neither boastful nor belligerent about its capabilities versus Russia, a former superpower with the largest nuclear arsenal on the planet. The IDF official likened Israel to “The Mouse that Roared,” the classic novel of a tiny nation that challenges the United States.
But if Israel resembles any mouse, it’s Mighty Mouse: small, powerful and not afraid to use its fists. In fact, what makes a potential Israel-Russia battle so dangerous is that it is not hypothetical. After the 1967 Six-Day War, Soviet fighters were sent to Egypt. This led to a notorious July 1970 incident when in a well-planned aerial ambush over the Suez Canal, Israeli fighters shot down five Soviet-piloted MiG-21 jets in three minutes.
Were the Israelis and Russians to come to blows, or if Moscow were to seriously threaten military force against Israel, could the United States risk a grave loss of prestige by not intervening to back its longtime ally? Could Russia—whose Syrian intervention is a proud symbol of its reborn military muscle and great power status—not retaliate for another downed Russian plane or a dead Russian soldier?
Which leads to the ultimate question: could tensions between Israel and Russia lead to a clash between American and Russian troops?
In the end, somebody will have to back down. But Iran isn’t about to give up its outpost on Israel’s border, and Russia probably can’t force them to. Then there is Israel, which is grimly determined to stop Iran.
Both Washington and Tel Aviv’s past decade of Syria policy has been driven largely by fears of a so-called “Shia crescent” or Iranian land bridge which would conceivably connect Tehran with the Mediterranean via pro-Shia Baghdad and Damascus in a continuous arch of influence.
A 2007 article in The New Yorker by famed investigative journalist Seymour Hersh even predicted that a major proxy war fueled by the West and Saudi Arabia, and centered in Syria would soon erupt in order to prevent this so-called Iranian and pro-Shia expansion to the Mediterranean.
Fast-forward more than a decade after Hersh’s predictions, and a bloody proxy war for Syria that has tragically taken half-a-million lives out of which Assad and his Hezbollah and Iranian allies have emerged victorious, the Washington neocons’ worst nightmare has come true.
A literal new land bridge establishing an international highway that runs all the way from Tehran to Beirut is now under construction, just released satellite images reveal.
At the end of a month that’s nearly witnessed directly military confrontation between the US and Iran, with a continuous war of words and American military build-up in the Persian Gulf, the White House has ordered a fresh deployment of 1,500 troops to the Middle East to monitor Iran’s actions, according to Pentagon statements.
No doubt these new ground forces will take note of any potential Iranian troop or proxy militia movements through Iran into Syria. Beirut-based Al-Masdar News provides the following details of the newly released satellite images as follows:
The Israel-based Image Satellite International company released a new satellite image showing the construction of a land bridge between Syria and Iraq.
Based on the image, the construction is taking place between the Syrian border city of Albukamal and the Iraqi border city of Al-Qa’im. This border is controlled by Hashd Al-Sha’abi (Popular Mobilization Units) on the Iraqi side, and the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) on the Syrian side.
#Iran’s land bridge from #Tehran to the #Mediterranean: #Iranian-handeled militias build a new #Iraq–#Syria border crossing which will be controlled by #IRGC and allow transfer of weapons, oil and personnel. See #ISI report here: https://t.co/jUKEKAwIDu #hizballah #satellite pic.twitter.com/TcQIsPxzv4
— ImageSat Intl. (@ImageSatIntl) May 24, 2019
The report notes that this is part of a broader effort “to link Tehran to the Mediterranean via an international highway and railway.”
Ultimately the new transportation corridors will end in the Lebanese capital of Beirut. US and Israeli defense officials have long worried this will be a huge boon to Hezbollah. Israel has over the past two years launched hundreds of airstrikes inside Syria ostensibly to disrupt Hezbollah and Iran-linked weapons shipments.
The Al-Masdar report continues:
For Israel and the United States, Iran’s ability to transport oil, supplies, and weapons from their capital to Syria and Lebanon will be a major issue. Israel has already targeted several Iranian arms convoys in Syria over the last five years. With the opening of the international highway, Iran will be able to bypass the sanctions imposed on their country and Syria.
The reopening of this highway is incredibly important to the Syrian government, as the Western sanctions have prevented foreign oil shipments from reaching their port cities. The oil shipments, which are mostly Iranian, have been a rarity since the Trump administration intensified their blockade in the eastern Mediterranean.
Hawks in Washington have long argued for greater US engagement in Syria precisely so that the so-called “Shia crescent” of influence running from Tehran, through Baghdad and Damascus, and into Lebanese Hezbollah territory, can be thwarted.
However, with the Syrian Army now back in control of the majority of the country, including the most populous cities, it looks like US and Israel’s “redirection” policy that Hersh previously described has been dashed.
But this also could be reason to believe that the war in Syria won’t quiet down anytime soon, but could actually be fast ramping up again.
U.S. FIGHTER JETS AND DRONE FLEET SENT TO COUNTER ‘ESCALATING CAMPAIGN BY IRAN’
Along with the newly announced Pentagon deployment of 1,500 troops to the Middle East in order to counter “an escalating campaign by Iran” the US is sending a dozen fighter jets to provide aerial support, the AP reports. This after defense officials for the first time laid explicit blame on Iran’s leaders during statements Friday for allegedly ordering attacks on a Saudi oil pipeline and four tankers near the Strait of Hormuz.
And in a move that’s most certainly related, the White House also on Friday steamrolled Congress to approve $8 billion in arms sales to the UAE and Saudi Arabia and expedite delivery, invoking a rarely used provision of American arms control laws to bypass lawmakers and approve the weapons sales, citing the escalating tensions with Iran as justification. All of this, combined with Iran’s key regional ally Syria coming under new chemical weapons scrutiny over fresh claims it used poison gas in a battle near Idlib a week ago, suggests we could be headed toward a major new proxy war in the Middle East.
The AP tallied the fresh deployments to join the already in the region USS Abraham Lincoln carrier strike group and four B-52 bombers as follows:
The deployments announced Friday include a squadron of 12 fighter jets, manned and unmanned surveillance aircraft, and a number of military engineers to beef up protection for forces. In addition a battalion of four Patriot missile batteries that was scheduled to leave the Middle East has been ordered to stay. The total number of troops involved is about 1,500, with roughly 600 included in the Patriot battalion. None of those troops will go to either Iraq or Syria.
This suggests the troops could be placed at US or allied bases along the Persian Gulf, in places like the UAE, Qatar, or even possibly Saudi Arabia — something the Saudis have recently said they’d be open to in support of anti-Iran operations.
The newly announced 1,500 troop deployment appears peanuts, however, compared to the already about 70,000 US military personnelcurrently present in the region. The AP report summarizes further:
The U.S. has about 70,000 troops across the Middle East, including at a major Navy base in Bahrain and an Air Force base and operations center in Qatar. There are about 5,200 troops in Iraq and 2,000 in Syria.
UN: NUCLEAR WAR IS CLOSER NOW THAN EVER
A United Nations arms official has declared nuclear war to be closer than it has ever been since World War II. The geopolitical climate is so divisive and disturbing right now, that globalists are actually telling us a nuclear war could be coming.
The head of the United Nations’ Institute for Disarmament Research (UNIDIR) Director Renata Dwan said in an interview that the use of nuclear weapons is more likely today than any time since the U.S. bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in Japan in 1945, adding that the use of such weapons today carried a greater risk than ever, according to Reuters.
“I think that it’s genuinely a call to recognize – and this has been somewhat missing in the media coverage of the issues – that the risks of nuclear war are particularly high now, and the risks of the use of nuclear weapons, for some of the factors I pointed out, are higher now than at any time since World War II,” she told the news service, speaking about a call from 122 nations to ban such weapons entirely. Dawn says that the UN should be doing more to ban nuclear weapons.
“How we think about that, and how we act on that risk and the management of that risk, seems to me a pretty significant and urgent question that isn’t reflected fully in the (U.N.) Security Council,” she told Reuters according to The Hill.
Of course, a ban only works if countries are going to obey. Should nations defy a UN nuclear weapons ban, there is literally nothing the UN can do about it. There are far too many nukes out there for the UN’s words to matter. The Treaty for the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, which is backed by a group that won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2017, is currently supported by more than 100 nations, most of which do not have any nuclear weapons anyway. It has been ratified by 23 countries out of the 50 it requires to take effect. Again, even if it “takes effect,” large players such as the United States, Russia, and China could defy the ban and still start a nuclear war.
A report from blogger Pamela Geller, who is known for fighting the implementation of Shariah in the United States, is warning that if Ontario, Canada, passes a bill banning offensive speech, its “free society is destroyed.”
She was referring to a bill that “would criminalize public displays by Christians deemed hateful to Muslims, the LGBT community and other victim groups designated by the left.”
The Prohibiting Hate-Promoting Demonstrations at Queen’s Park Act would forbid any rally, meeting or event that is called hateful by the parliamentary speaker.
LifeSiteNews reported the nebulous nature of Canada’s anti-hate laws gives left-wing lawmakers carte blanche to ban all Christian protest.
The problem is that “hate” isn’t defined under Canadian law, so it can be used to silence reasonable expression of belief.
She cited the Trinity Western Christian University case last year in which the private institution’s moral covenant was “deemed hateful and discrimination.”
And in the Bill Whatcott case from 2013, “the Supreme Court of Canada concluded that the effects of an expression used, not the communicator’s intent, are what is relevant. The court went on to conclude that ‘truthful statements and sincerely held beliefs do not affect the finding of ‘hate.’”
Geller warned that if speech “that offends a group is outlawed, that group has absolute power, and a free society is destroyed.”
“A group that cannot be criticized cannot be opposed. It can work its will no matter what it is, and no one will be able to say anything to stop it,” she said.
“Inoffensive speech needs no protection. The First Amendment was developed precisely in order to protect speech that was offensive to some, in order to prevent those who had power from claiming they were offended by speech opposing them and silencing the powerless.
“A free society is by its nature one in which people put up with others being uncivil and offensive. The alternative is a quiet authoritarian society in which only one opinion is allowed and the others are silenced, and ultimately sent to the camps,” she explained.
She said if a group will not bear being offended without resorting to violence, that group “will rule unopposed while everyone else lives in fear.”
“Islamic law forbids criticism of Islam, Quran, Muhammad. If they cannot be criticized, we are in effect accepting Islamic law as overriding the freedom of speech. This would establish Muslims as a protected class and prevent honest discussion of how Islamic jihadists use the texts and teachings of Islam to justify violence and supremacism,” she wrote.
An 8.0 magnitude earthquake struck northern Peru on Sunday morning, according to preliminary readings from the United States Geological Survey.
The earthquake’s epicenter was at an approximate depth of 115 km, according to USGS, and could be felt as far afield as Lima, Peru; Caracas, Venezuela; and Quito, Ecuador.
There are reports of injuries and damages to homes and roadways, Peru’s President Martin Vizcarra said in a statement on state TV.
The most affected areas were the cities of Yurimaguas and Tarapoto in the Peruvian Amazon, Vizcarra said.
“We already have reports of injuries, of affected homes, collapsed highways and a bridge that connects Yurimaguas with Tarapoto has also collapsed,” Vizcarra said.
The country’s civil protection agency is sending teams to the affected areas, he added.
Five injuries were confirmed by the country’s health ministry on Twitter.
Two of the injured are from the city of Yurimaguas, and the other injuries were from other provinces in the Amazon region, the ministry said.
“The strong earthquake that occurred early this morning was felt in several regions of the country,” Vizcarra tweeted earlier Sunday.
“We are evaluating the affected areas. I ask all of our citizens to remain calm.”
The earthquake was the strongest in Peru in 12 years, Vizcarra said.
Peru’s National Emergency Operations Center tweeted that the earthquake was felt in several regions of the country, and monitoring continues.
The country’s interior ministry tweeted photos of damaged houses in the northern Amazonas region, adding that police were on site to protect affected areas.
Ecuador’s President Lenín Moreno also tweeted: “I am awaiting of the information about the strong earthquake recorded this morning.”
In January 2018 a 7.1-magnitude earthquake hit southern Peru, killing two people.
At least 65 people were injured in the cities of Arequipa, Ica and Ayacucho in southern Peru, the National Civil Defense Institute reported.
On August 15, 2007 a magnitude 8.0 earthquake struck about 100 miles south of the Peruvian capital of Lima, killing approximately 514 people.
A powerful 8.0 magnitude earthquake hit the Amazon rainforest in north-central Peru on Sunday morning, according to the United States Geological Survey (USGS).
Peru’s National Emergency Operations Center registered a magnitude of 7.2 for the earthquake, according to the Associated Press (AP).
Pictures posted on Twitter by the Ministry of the Interior of Peru showed considerable damage and building collapses in Yurimaguas, a town with over 62,000 inhabitants.
#AHORA Información de la @PoliciaPeru en #Yurimaguas da cuenta sobre derrumbes de casonas en AA.HH. Las Praderas. Asimismo, en barrio de Macao, en el distrito de San Lorenzo, provincia Datem del Marañón, policías brindan protección y calma a población afectada. pic.twitter.com/gAc9UbNU1t
— Mininter Perú (@MininterPeru) May 26, 2019
A video showed the facade of a church in Ecuador lying in ruins on the ground.
Local law enforcement agents were “patrolling the streets to calm down the population and receive information about housing collapses due to the strong earthquake,” the Ministry of the Interior of Peru said.
Power outages have occurred in some communities, the AP reported.
Primeras imágenes luego de los sismos ocurridos en Yurimaguas, Alto Amazonas, Loreto. #AlertasBomberos
Video: @bomberosPE pic.twitter.com/miV5ak8Gf6
— Bomberos Perú (@bomberosPE) May 26, 2019
”We are evaluating the affected areas,” President of the Republic of Peru, Martín Vizcarra, said on Twitter. “I ask all of our citizens to remain calm.”
“Daily showers and thunderstorms in the vicinity can slow cleanup and recovery efforts this week,” according to AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Rob Miller. “There is also the threat for a local downpour.”
The temblor struck 47 miles (75 km) southeast of Lagunas, Peru, at a depth of 68 miles (110 km) below the earth’s surface. Lagunas is home to nearly 10,000 people.
The location of the powerful earthquake that struck Peru on Sunday, May 24, 2019, is noted by the star. (USGS)
The USGS issued a yellow alert for shaking-related fatalities and economic losses.
“Some casualties and damage are possible and the impact should be relatively localized,” the USGS stated. “Past yellow alerts have required a local or regional level response.”
China’s growing surveillance state has made the news again. The NYT described a “God’s-eye”—perhaps better described as a State’s-eye—view of Chinese society as seen from the millions of networked devices that are blanketing the country.
At the click of a mouse … the police can pull up live video from any surveillance camera … passing through one of the thousands of checkpoints in the city.
To demonstrate, she showed how the system could retrieve the photo, home address and official identification number of a woman who had been stopped at a checkpoint on a major highway. The system sifted through billions of records, then displayed details of her education, family ties, links to an earlier case and recent visits to a hotel and an internet cafe.
The combination of ubiquitous sensors and database fusion has allowed the Communist Party to create “virtual cages” for millions of people. It’s easy with Internet of Things technology to turn off an individual’s credit card, phone, car, refrigerator, etc., should he stray into a proscribed zone.
The Times notes the nightmare, saying that “it is also a vision that some of President Trump’s aides have begun citing in a push for tougher action against Chinese companies in the intensifying trade war. Beyond concerns about market barriers, theft and national security, they argue that China is using technology to strengthen authoritarianism at home and abroad — and that the United States must stop it.”
Suddenly a war over the future of the internet has broken out. It is perhaps the first major conflict over a nonphysical system in the history of the world and it has come to the front rank virtually by surprise after decades of the public being told tomorrow would be a world without borders.
Escalating tensions between Washington and Beijing are wiping billions from the net worth of China’s richest surveillance tycoons. … The losses deepened on Wednesday after reports that Donald Trump’s administration is considering blacklisting the surveillance giants, in part because of their alleged role in human rights violations.
The virtual high ground of this new war is the architecture of 5G, “digital cellular networks, in which the service area covered by providers is divided into a mosaic of small geographical areas called cells,” with up to a million devices per square kilometer. This creates an ecosystem teeming with electronic life, the Internet of Things, where “everything from toasters to dog collars to dialysis pumps to running shoes will be connected. Remote robotic surgery will be routine, the military will develop hypersonic weapons, and autonomous vehicles will cruise safely along smart highways.”
It would also be the scaffolding of China’s virtual cage. Whoever controls 5G will be able to surveil and control the planet. Those in charge of the network could be omniscient and potentially omnipotent over unprotected man-made systems. To guard against China ruling this kingdom, the Trump administration has banned U.S. companies, most notably Google, from selling technology to Chinese giant Huawei.
The urgency of the challenge was underscored by The Hill’s comparison of the situation to Apollo. “We are in another innovation race right now. The race to 5G [is] a contest that could have more far-reaching effects than the race to the moon.
The Trump administration deserves credit for articulating a policy that aims to see America win the race to 5G.” Steve Bannon had an even more extreme formulation: “It is a massive national security issue to the West. The executive order is 10 times more important than walking away from the trade deal. It [Huawei] is a major national security threat, not just to the US but to the rest of the world. We are going to shut it down.”
While stopping China might prevent the worst, it will not end the threat. 5G is like Sauron’s ring. As long as it exists, someone—the EU, Washington, Big Silicon or Western industry—will wear it. The result may not be Beijing’s “virtual cage,” but it will potentially be an electronic jail nonetheless. Who can resist wielding such power?
Former National Security Council staffer Brigadier General Robert Spalding has concluded that the threat is so great the only alternative is to cast the ring into Mount Doom and redesign 5G from scratch.
But who’s to guarantee its replacement won’t be even more sinister? The temptation to spy on the public, for commercial or political reasons, is becoming hard to resist. “The danger,” noted Glyn Moody, “comes not just from Chinese companies. The risk is that Western companies will … follow suit in developing ever-more intrusive products and services with surveillance at their heart, or be left behind in the great 5G race.” In fact, it already has, as Bruce Schneier pointed out in a 2013 article. We’ve already clapped the digital manacles on ourselves.
The Internet is a surveillance state. Whether we admit it to ourselves or not, and whether we like it or not, we’re being tracked all the time…. There are simply too many ways to be tracked. The Internet, e-mail, cell phones, web browsers, social networking sites, search engines: these have become necessities, and it’s fanciful to expect people to simply refuse to use them just because they don’t like the spying …
This isn’t something the free market can fix …. In today’s world, governments and corporations are working together to keep things that way. Governments are happy to use the data corporations collect—occasionally demanding that they collect more and save it longer—to spy on us. And corporations are happy to buy data from governments. Together the powerful spy on the powerless, and they’re not going to give up their positions of power, despite what the people want. …
Welcome to an Internet without privacy, and we’ve ended up here with hardly a fight.
It may the biggest challenge Western civilization has faced since World War II. The irony is that the conflict with Russia, a supply chain war with China, and the prospect of a global electronic jail were largely invisible to the media before 2016, although they were probably “felt” by a large number of voters who knew something was wrong but couldn’t put their finger on exactly what. The question now is which was fiction: the halcyon days of the global connectedness or the threats we face today?