Five Minutes to Midnight

Five Minutes to Midnight
Vol: 64 Issue: 20 Saturday, January 20, 2007

We’ve already examined China’s race to arm itself for what most believe is an inevitable conflict with the West, and in particular, with the United States.

China is buying what it cannot manufacture itself, stealing what it cannot buy or develop on its own, and selling what it manufactures or steals to its ‘allies’ — with ‘allies’ being defined as any nation who is at odds with the United States.

As we noted yesterday, China is now second only to the United States in military spending relative to national GDP. China finances a lot of its military R&D by selling its technology to rogue states and Third World nations, who then proliferate the technology further according to their own national interests.

Here’s a sample scenario to show how it works: China sells missile plans and missile components to Pakistan. Pakistan develops its own version of the same missile, which it then sells to Iran. Iran makes a few changes, renames it and sells the renamed version to Syria, and Venezuela.

Syria shares the hardware and technology with countries like Sudan, and terror groups like Hezbollah, with its cross-connections with Hamas, al-Qaeda and other Islamic affiliates.

Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez ensures his allies, like Chile, Ecuador, Cuba and Nicaragua are similarly equipped according to what is best for Venezuela’s national interests.

It works almost like a virus, finding its way to a new host and then infecting the surrounding regions.

Soon, countries so poor they can’t afford indoor plumbing are bristling with high-tech missiles and joining regional groupings reminiscent of Los Angeles street gangs preparing for a drive-by shooting war.

Despite China’s entry into the international underworld, the Al Capone of the international gangster ring is still Russia. In 2005, Russia’s arms exports exceeded six billion dollars, setting a new post-Soviet record.

The US Congressional Research Service reported that Russia was ahead of France and the United States in arms deals with developing nations in 2005.

China and India have continued to top the list of importers of Russian weapons. Russia recently also has struck big weapons deals with Venezuela, Algeria and Iran.

With the collapse of the Soviet Union came the rise of the Russian mafia, who, having successfully corrupted Boris Yeltsin, used the leverage it gave them to force him position former KGB agent Vladimir Putin as his successor and later quietly resign with his pension intact or be prosecuted and jailed.

Yeltsin resigned in 1999 and named Vladimir Putin as both Acting President and Prime Minister and the Russian mafia became the Russian government.

Like any criminal organization, Russia operates exclusively for profit, and, since it is run by criminals for criminals, compliance with law, international or otherwise, is only as valid as it is profitable.

If you wanted to buy a fully-assault rifle in Los Angeles so you could rob a bank, you wouldn’t go to a gun shop and fill out all those forms asking what you want to do with it.

You’d go to a street gang who couldn’t care less if you planned to shoot up a playground with it — as long as you paid cash up front.

Similarly, if a nation wanted to buy weapons, Moscow doesn’t want to know why — as long as the checks don’t bounce.


Moscow announced the delivery of more than two dozen sophisticated Tor-M1 missiles to Iran earlier this week. It was the first high-level Russian confirmation of the sale, although Western and Israeli intelligence reports have known of the deal for months.

Moscow’s confirmation of ‘delivery’ means the Iranian crews have been trained, the missile batteries are in place and fully operational. The Tor-M1 is an advanced anti-aircraft system that can identify up to 48 targets and fire at two targets simultaneously, at altitudes of up to 6,000 meters.

Moreover, commented Russian Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov, “If the Iranian leadership has a desire to purchase more defensive weapons, we would do that.”

The Russians continue to deny a similar deal with Iran to buy even more powerful long-range S-300 air defense missiles, indicating those batteries are not yet fully operational.

Moscow has no doubt of Iranian intentions to use those missiles against incoming Israeli and US strikes aimed at disabling Iran’s nuclear weapons programs.

And it is without illusion about what Iran intends to do with its nukes once it gets them. Moscow knows the sale is the equivalent to signing Israel’s national death warrant, but as long as Tehran’s checks don’t bounce, its all good.

There is no better analogy I can think of than that of organized criminals supplying automatic weapons to street gangs, aware, but totally unconcerned with what death and destruction they’ll be unleashing in their own neighborhoods in the process.

And the gangs are expanding. King Abdullah of Jordan recently announced his nation’s intentions to begin developing its own nuclear program, echoing Iran’s argument that it intends to use it for ‘peaceful purposes.’ The King told an Israeli newspaper:

“The Egyptians are looking for a nuclear program. The GCC [Gulf Cooperation Council] are looking at one, and we are actually looking at nuclear power for peaceful and energy purposes. We’ve been discussing it with the West.”

But Jordan knows that if it can’t get what it wants from the West, it can always pay a premium and get it from Moscow.

If one takes a step back and looks at the Big Picture, it is as if the whole world is going completely mad.

Yesterday, the Bulletin Of The Atomic Scientists advanced the Doomsday Clock forward from seven to five minutes to midnight. The clock was set up in 1947 as a graphic picture of how close humanity is to wiping itself out.

The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, named for its newsletter, was founded in 1945 by scientists who worked in the Manhattan Project and were concerned about the prospect of nuclear war.

In a joint news conference in London and Washington, D.C., the directors of the magazine Bulletin Of The Atomic Scientists, who set the time on the Doomsday Clock, warned:

“We stand at the brink of a second nuclear age. Not since the first atomic bombs were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki has the world faced such perilous choices.

“North Korea’s recent test of a nuclear weapon, Iran’s nuclear ambitions, and the continued presence of some 26,000 nuclear weapons in the United States and Russia are symptomatic of a larger failure to solve the problems posed by the most destructive technology on Earth.”

The symbolism of the move is significant. The Doomsday Clock has moved only 18 times since it was first set to seven minutes to midnight in 1947.

Its most optimistic setting, was when it was reset to 17 minutes to midnight in 1991, following the dissolution of the Soviet Union — and before its replacement by the Russian mafia. By 1998, it had inched back up to nine minutes to midnight, losing two more minutes in 2002 as the madness continued to overspread the planet.

“No sane person would argue that the proliferation of nuclear weapons across more national borders would make the world a safer place, or that the renewal of nuclear testing or that the actual first use of nuclear weapons in battle is likely to be a good thing,” said Lawrence M. Krauss, professor of physics and astronomy at Case Western Reserve University.

“Nevertheless,” he added, “the psychological barriers that have helped limit the potential for the use of nuclear weapons in this country and others seems to be breaking down.”

In other words, the world is evidently in the throes of having a nervious breakdown and is in danger of committing suicide at any moment.

The warning issued by Doomsday Bulletin echoes that of the Prophet Joel, describing his prophecy of events he says will take place during the final days of human history.

“And I will shew wonders in the heavens and in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke. The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, BEFORE the great and terrible day of the LORD come.” (Joel 2:30-31)

Five minutes to midnight — and counting.

Tick. . .tick. . .tick. . .

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About Pete Garcia

Christian, father, husband, veteran, pilot, and sinner saved by grace. I am a firm believer in, and follower of Jesus Christ. I am Pre-Trib, Dispensational, and Non-Denominational (but I lean Southern Baptist).

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