Prophesied destruction of Damascus imminent?

Posted: September 21, 2007
1:00 a.m. Eastern
     by Hal Lindsey

A stunning report published by Jane’s Defense Weekly confirms rumors of
a July explosion at a Syrian military base at al-Safir, near Aleppo, in
which reportedly “dozens” of Iranian engineers were killed along with
their Syrian counterparts.

Syria had originally dismissed reports of the explosion by saying
the blast was generated by the desert heat causing the accidental
detonation of a stockpile of explosives.

Jane’s reported that the explosion was actually triggered while
the engineers were fitting a chemical warhead onto a Scud-C missile.
The explosion and fire released containers of the deadly nerve agents
VX and sarin gas, as well as a mustard gas blistering agent.

Israeli Internal Security Minister Avi Dichter told reporters
this week, “Iran has entered into strategic cooperation with Syria on
conventional and nonconventional weapons development,” adding, “The
Iranians are very big in Syria.”

(Column continues below)


Iran’s Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is preparing Syria to cover his
flank, should war break out between Israel and Iran over Tehran’s
nuclear arsenal. Ahmadinejad is evidently gambling on Syria taking out
Israel while Iran squares off against the United States. Were Iran and
Israel to face each other head-to-head, one or the other would
inevitably cease to exist. Israel would have no choice but to
annihilate Iran before Iran annihilated Israel.

Israel’s “Samson Option” is named after the biblical judge who
sacrificed himself in order to take his enemies with him. In the event
of its impending destruction, Israel’s retaliatory plan involves taking
the Middle East along with it.

As the Iraq experience has proved, war with the United States
is survivable. The terms of Israel’s “Samson Option” mean war with
Israel involving first-use weapons of mass destruction is not.

To Ahmadinejad’s way of thinking, if somebody has to be
martyred to the Mahdi’s cause, why not Syria? Twenty-five hundred odd
years ago, the Hebrew prophet Isaiah prophesied of the destruction of
Damascus. This prophecy is made more fascinating by the fact it remains
unfulfilled in history.

Damascus is the oldest continually inhabited city on earth.
Although conquered many times, its status as an economic and cultural
center of antiquity preserved it intact to this day.

But Isaiah predicted Damascus would one day face utter
destruction: “Behold, Damascus is about to be removed from being a city
and it will become a fallen ruin,” he writes in Isaiah 17:1.

The prophet also predicts Damascus’ destruction will come at a
time when “the glory of Jacob” had begun to fade (verse 4), at a time
when Israel is in great peril of being “shaken like an olive tree,”
leaving only a few “on the topmost bough.”

Isaiah prophesies that, when Damascus’ destruction comes, there
will be “an uproar of many peoples” and “the rumbling of nations” but
that they will flee at God’s rebuke.

It seems clear from recent events that Syria is preparing
chemical and biological weapons, and possibly some form of nuclear
weapon for use in some future war against Israel. Syria and Iran have
been outfitting Hezbollah with the latest in offensive weaponry since
the war of June 2006.

Israel is unlikely to sit back and wait for a first-use
chemical or gas attack from Damascus. Neither is it likely to wait
until Ahmadinejad can use Syria to flank them in the event of conflict
with Iran. So the number of Israeli raids against Syrian targets is
likely to escalate until either Israel has destroyed the threat or
Syria responds militarily. If Syria attacks with weapons of mass
destruction, it can expect a massive, in-kind Israeli response.

Bible prophecy doesn’t make allowances for a full-scale
unconventional war of annihilation of Israel by Iran, however. Ezekiel
predicts Iran’s participation of the Gog-Magog invasion as part of a
Russian-led alliance, not a regional alliance with Syria. Both Iran and
Israel are listed as participants in that future conflict.

But Syria isn’t.

Syria isn’t numbered among any of the various protagonists prophesied to participate in the conflicts of the last days.

Isaiah describes the destruction of Damascus in much the same
terms that would be used today to describe the effects of all-out,
no-holds-barred Israeli retaliatory strike against a Syrian gas attack.

“At evening time, behold, there is terror! Before morning, they are no more” (Isaiah 17:13-14).

Assad had better reconsider his options – while he still has some.

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