Beyond the Cusp

April 13, 2018

How Will the Arab-Israeli Conflict Finally End?

 

There has never been a conflict which ended while both parties were still capable of continuing the fight, neither side has achieved their ultimate goal and neither side has decided the fight is no longer viable militarily, monetarily, politically or publically supported. The Arab-Israeli conflict will not be any different. There will not be any peace agreement no matter the publicity about how it solves the differences in a means which is amicable for both sides. The reason for this comes down to the basic and mutually opposed, antithetical and the sides are inimical. The root of the problem is not territorial which has been how all attempts have been based for settling the differences. The differences are religious as well as political and social. The Arab side is based partially on the Quran and further on their self-conceived belief that they are undefeatable. The Israeli side is based on the Biblical promise that there would come a time when the Jewish People would be gathered by Hashem returning to the lands promised to Avraham in Genesis. What the central problem boils down to is the Jews believe that they are to return to their biblical homeland while the Arabs believe that they are superior in all things military and cannot be defeated and thus no lands which they have held be permitted to be occupied by another people. So the Jews have this Zionist belief that their return to Israel is a promise from Hashem and thus cannot be prevented and once returned will last through the coming of the Moshiach while the Arabs believe that the existence of Israel is an affront to them as a people and against the Quranic promise that they will never lose lands once they have implanted Islam on that land. The simplest explanation is the Jews believe in Israel as permanent and the Arabs believe Israel must be destroyed and obviously, these are incompatible and mutually opposed.

 

What needs to be understood is that these same Arab nations forced out their Jews between 1948 and 1972, most before 1960 (see map below). This is the problem as it exists and will continue to exist until one side proves victorious in their desire and the other side accepts that reality. If the Arabs permit peace with the existence of Israel, then peace is possible. As the Arabs have already made very clear, that will never happen and they will continue to pursue the destruction of Israel and the death of the Jews until the end of time. That brings us to the Arab version of peace where Israel has been exterminated and millions of Jews have fallen before the marauding victorious Arab armies, charred remains of a nuclear holocaust or corralled into camps to be exterminated or converted to Islam. Israel will simply take whatever measures she needs to keep Israelis alive and protected which means that there is no solution to the Arab-Israeli conflict and the world should simply walk away and leave us to one another. Obviously, only one side will get their way when all is said and done. The next question is one which requires some thought and hopefully the world can find an answer. Why is the outcome of this conflict seemingly so important to the world that a nation about the size of the state of New Jersey, a rather small nation as far as square kilometers are concerned, yet Israel is an obsession for the United Nations, European Union, and much of the rest of the world and, lastly, the United States. Does anybody have any ideas as to why this little nation of Israel takes center stage for so much of the world? There is a simple reason which the leaders of the world understand and some are taking what would appear to be a counterintuitive position. According to doctrines written in numerous societies’ compendiums from ancient histories from the beginning of writing including stories even older which were passed down through oral rote memory up to some of the most recent philosophical political theorems have equated the existence of the Jewish People and their final permanence in the Promised Lands with the survival of human civilization. The Jewish Bible told of the eventual return of the Jews to their lands as was also reported in other ancient histories. In the Bible, the return of the Jews would be a permanent return and within a short period of time, all the Jews would return to their promised lands.

 

Jews forced from Arab World Between 1948 and 1972

Jews forced from Arab World Between 1948 and 1972

 

Many have claimed that this is impossible as such a complete return would virtually double the population of Israel. Well, if that were true it would be wonderful. First a little bit of Jewish history in relation to their former returns, the exodus from Egypt and their return after Cyrus the great freed the Jewish People from Babylonian occupation and granted them semiautonomous rule. Historians have estimated that somewhere from twenty to thirty-five percent of the Jews left Egypt with the remainder deciding that a life under Egyptian rule to be preferable to the responsibilities of freedom and these Jews disappeared into the stretching of time. The end of the Babylonian Exile resulted in twenty to thirty-five percent of the Jews returning to the Promised Lands to build the Second Temple while the remainder were dazzled by the advance Persian civilization and remained with the Persians and these Jews disappeared into the stretching of time. The current return to the Promised Lands will result in double the response of the former returns from exile thus the Jewish People can expect forty to seventy percent of the total numbers of Jews returning. This would result in a mere twenty percent to a maximum of forty to forty-five percent of the European and American Jews returning to Israel with the rest disappearing into the stretching of time. Disappearing into the stretching of time can also be used to describe what happened to the Ten Lost Tribes of Israel which were the Northern Kingdom of Israel which fell first with the Kingdom of Judea which included the tribes of Judah and Benjamin. Basically we are using that phrase to describe the tribes and peoples of the Jews who disappeared from the known collection of the Jewish People. What has been amazing has been that numbers of these tribes have reemerged and proven their lineage and have been reincorporated into modern Israel. The return of these lost tribes has added much variety of peoples to the population which will serve the Jewish People as we face our future.

 

There are those who continue to claim that soon there will be thousands, possibly tens or hundreds of thousands of Jews returning to Israel very soon placing an economic strain as well as making the housing situation dire until sufficient housing can be built. Many claim that such an influx will require extensive use of lands in the south in the Negev Desert. Currently there are approximately seven and three-quarter million Jews outside of Israel. Almost five and three-quarter million reside in the United States, another half million in France, just over a third million in Canada and just over a quarter million in Britain. Currently the majority of the Jews coming to Israel are from France, the Ukraine and Russia. Looking at this and one will notice that of the three nations from which the majority of Jews making Aliyah, only one is amongst the four largest populations of Jews outside of Israel. The Jewish population in the United States, as well as Canada to some extent, lives in insular communities where much of their neighborhoods all belong the same synagogue or ones of similar denomination, Reform, Conservative and Orthodox. The Orthodox Jews are probably in the most tightly knit communities.

 

World Religious Population Distributions

World Religious Population Distributions

 

Due to their tightly knit communities and their use of private Yeshiva schooling, their children marry within the community. With Conservative and Reform, and other smaller offshoots of Judaism outside the Orthodox communities, often use the public schools and reside in more mixed neighborhoods, there is a higher rate of their children marrying outside their community. The Conservative and Reform Jews make up the majority of Jews in the United States and with the intermarriage rate reaching almost seventy percent of their children, how much longer will their children and grandchildren continue to follow Judaism? Many of these intermarried children choose to try to raise their children in both Judaism and Christianity. This leads to confusion and due to peer pressure and the basic Christian dominance in American society, the Christianity wins out in most cases and these children are even more likely to intermarry and simply leave the Jewish faith completely. There is something which could alter the adopted non-Jewish identity some of these Jews will adopt. It is the same thing which has occurred to Jews over history many of the times when they become overly assimilated. It happened in Persia with Hamas, it happened in Germany with Hitler and the Nazis and it could even happen in the United States. What happens is the steep rise in anti-Semitism which looks at the grandparents or even further back and decide who is Jewish by this determination. This makes many Jews who had adopted to leave Judaism suddenly returned to their Jewish roots not by any choice of their own.

 

The more recent of the historical examples is the easier one to describe. The German Jews were well accepted in their society and it was in Germany where Reform Judaism was born. This led to a split of the Jewish population with the Reform Jews often being the most assimilated amongst the Jewish population. There were Jews teaching in Universities and schools, as judges and lawyers, as doctors, technicians, physicists, chemists, tailors, actors, directors, writers and every other field of endeavor. They lived in mixed neighborhoods and some lived in neighborhoods apart (mostly the Orthodox). When the Nazis began to rise to power, the most assimilated Jews felt safe as they were proper Germans and Hitler meant those other Jews, the ones who lived apart and dressed in peculiar clothing and practiced a different life than the average German. Many claimed that the statements and anti-Semitism was simply an election ploy to garner votes, not something the government of Germany would ever allow to happen, after all, the Jews were amongst the highest percentage of those who fought for Germany in the Big War (World War I) and were proven real Germans. They were very much as the modern Jews in the United States are today; they denied the rise in anti-Semitism and continued on with their denial right onto the trains to the Concentration Camps.

 

Before we made Aliyah, we belonged to a Conservative Synagogue and these Jews mostly resided in an oval of our city which was anchored by our Conservative Synagogue at one pole and the reform Synagogue at the other pole. One could almost apply the formula for drawing an oval and they would incorporate well over ninety percent of the Jews in our little city. We were outliers as we resided miles outside these neighborhoods where our house was probably the only Jewish house within five to ten miles. Where we did not witness much if any outright anti-Semitism, we did hear some anti-Semitic thoughts which were part of the general beliefs and came out in idle conversations. As the area was predominantly Christian, the majority supported Israel but there were some very wrongheaded beliefs about whom and what Jews were. If you had asked these people if they were anti-Semitic they would deny even the wisp of a possibility, yet there were things they believed about Jews which were less than honest. One example was that Jews were wealthy and stuck to living with their own. Where we could not refute the living amongst their own, we easily refuted the wealth canard, as we would ask that they explain why we lived in their moderately priced neighborhood which was far from upper-middle-class, but was comfortable with older homes and white picket fences everywhere. Could these people be turned against the Jews of America, not all or even many of them but the Nazis were a minority with all the guns.

 

It does not take a majority of the people to turn an entire society into darkness, it just takes an overtly active minority of a mere fifteen to twenty-five percent with weapons and willingness to use violence and fifty percent who would start being complacent and before they could realize that things had become beyond their control, it would be too late to prevent the inevitable. The actual vote received by the Nazi Party received was thirty-seven and two-fifths percent of the popular votes. We can figure that some of these votes were made by people who were not hardcore Nazis but voted for them to remain safe as their neighborhood had so many Nazi flags in their lawns that to vote otherwise might prove to make them suspect. We need to remember that the Nazis were not exactly adverse to the use of violence, and that can persuade people to vote differently. For those who will claim that such things could never happen in the United States, then how would they explain the Philadelphia Black Panther intimidation at a voting station intimidation threats (see video below). Then there has been the use of the FBI and Justice Department as weapons against the Trump campaign during the last election which included a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court warrant sought and received using knowingly tainted evidence. The misconduct and weaponizing of the government is still being pealed back and who knows how many layers this onion will end up having and who else will tumble out before everything is done including possible foreign intervention against Trump from Russia and even some European allies. America is not a sacred and saintly as our sanitized school history taught us back in school, so never say that it cannot happen here.

 

 

We hope the United States continued in perpetuity as the protector of liberty and freedom for the world. We have seen one item which Israel should take to heart, that the United States is not and should never be believed to be the protector for the nation of Israel. President Obama allowing the passage of a Security Council resolution which placed almost everything beyond the Green Line as forbidden for Israelis to reside should have served as a wake-up call to the leaders of Israel from this time into the future. This would make the Palestinian Authority demand that no Jews be permitted on the lands they claim enforced by the United Nations under a Security Council resolution. This introduced a new day where support of Israel has become a partisan position where much, if not a large majority, of the Democrat Party will refuse to protect Israel without Israel meeting demands for sacrificing to the Arabs, something which would become such a threat that Israel would become difficult to defend. This is the new reality as things now appear. And the majority of non-Orthodox Jews support the Democrat Party blindly believing that it supports everything they support, and that may be valid as a measurable number of these same Jews do not actively support or care about Israel.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

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January 22, 2018

Current Assessments of Arab-Israeli Conflict Unhelpful

 

There are a number of glaring false assumptions about the Arab-Israeli conflict which serve only to minimize the antipathy felt by the aggressor which began the conflict and set it in motion for perpetuity. The most easily identified errors are that the conflict began in 1948 with the founding of the state of Israel, that the conflict is one-hundred years old, that the disagreement is over borders, that Jerusalem is a central core of the problem and a dozen other such falsities. This war started at the oasis of Khaybar outside Medina. For close to a thousand years Jews lived in the oases of Teyma, Khaybar, and Yathrib peaceably with the surrounding communities, both idolatrous and the growing Islamic community in Medina. There was one area of contention between the Jewish communities and Muhammad, the Jews refused to convert and refused to accept him as the final prophet holding to the historic Jewish belief that the period of the Prophets was long ended. In the year 628-9 A.D., Muhammad gathered his forces and invaded the Jewish community at the Oasis of Khaybar defeating them. In less than a decade, the Islamic forces had defeated all of the separate Jewish communities driving them from the area. It is partially because these were the first groups with whom Muhammad warred or due to the stiff resistance and lack of trust as treaties were disregarded when they were considered inconvenient and no longer to one’s advantage that a great animosity was built between the Jews and Muslims that the Jews are chosen for a particular hatred by Islam. Consider the example of the Qurayza Tribe of Jews, who were defeated by Muhammad despite their leader opting to stay neutral when their town was besieged by a Meccan army that was sent to take revenge for Muhammad’s deadly caravan raids. Their sin was not joining the fight to defend Muhammad and his fellow caravan raiders who were within their town. The tribe killed no one from either side and even surrendered peacefully to Muhammad after the Meccans had been turned back. Yet still Muhammad had every male member of the Qurayza Tribe beheaded. The wars between the Muslims and their continued history of periodic particularly harsh treatment of Jews emanate from these battles.

 

Further, the Quran even states, in Sahih Bukhari 52:177, “The Hour will not be established until you fight with the Jews, and the stone behind which a Jew will be hiding will say, ‘O Muslim! There is a Jew hiding behind me, so kill him.’” This requires the followers of Islam to war against the Jews, some now interpret this to mean defeating Israel, before their end-times can commence or at least have its time set. This adds to their reasons to fight against Jews which now means Israel. Additionally there are the two spheres which the world is divided among in Islam, Dar al-Islam and Dar al-Harb. Dar al-Islam is the House of Islam, the area under Islamic rule and thus considered to be at peace; and Dar el Harb being the House of War which includes all lands with which Islam is at war that includes everything outside Dar al-Islam, simply put, everywhere else. Another point is that once Islam conquers any territory, it is to then remain under Islamic dominance forever and should Islamic territory be lost, even or especially were it to revert to previous (infidel) ownership thus falling outside Islam, that becomes a mortal affront to the supremacy of Islam. Hamas has in their preamble to the Hamas Charter a quote from their founder, Imam Hassan al-Banna “Israel will exist and will continue to exist until Islam will obliterate it, just as it obliterated others before it.” Obviously, throughout history at numerous times the Jews and even Israel was an area of supreme importance and considered to be the ultimate threat facing Islam. But then, we would simply ask ourselves, why should Islam be any different from everyone else. Before you get up and demand what we mean by everyone else, let us give a partial list of everyone else throughout history; the Pharos’s Egypt, Philistines, Assyrians, Babylonians, Persians, Ancient Greeks, Roman Empire, Byzantines, Islamic Caliphate, Crusaders, English Empire, Rome’s Inquisition, Spanish Empire, Nazis, Communists and others.

 

In all honesty, we are not claiming by any stretch of the imagination that Israel’s only difficulty is with Islam as there are a plethora of others who would love for Israel to disappear. Many groups outside the Arab and Muslim worlds would also be happy for Israel to disappear. We also need to point out not all of the Arab and Muslim worlds actively want to destroy Israel. One of the main forces which in ambivalent at best and animosity at the worst we have Rome, Vatican City to be more precise where the Catholic Church has a long history of following Replacement Theology which turned the Jews from the Chosen People into the Cursed People. Much of Replacement Theology is based upon the Jewish People being dispersed and denied any return to the Holy Lands. The fact that Israel had been destroyed and the Jews apparently thrown from their homelands was all the proof that the Christians, or in this case the Catholic Church, had replaced the Jews as the Chosen People and the Jews cursed. Then we come to Martin Luther who carries Replacement Theology one-step further and claiming that the Catholic Church has sold their souls and were to join the Jews as cursed and his church was the replacement and true faith. This idea of Replacement Theology continued being used by each Protestant Church during the Reformation. The Church of England, Episcopal Church, also took the position of being the singular holy church for the British Isles which led to years of fighting between the Catholics and the Anglicans. Every step along the way, Replacement Theology was utilized by each Protestant Church founder claimed to have the rights to the title of the Chosen People and all previous forms of Christianity and the Jews now being the cursed people. Islam was no exception as when Muhammad came forth with Islam, he declared that he was presenting the final incarnation of Allah’s word and Islam would be the last and only Chosen People as they replaced all the various Christian faiths and especially the Jews, just as the Christians had denoted the Jews.

 

Refuting the Lie of Replacement Theology

 

Along with each religion, the nation which adopted these various sects of Christianity, the different forms of Islam and the anti-religion Communism all declared their animosity against the Jews. When Israel was reformed by David Ben Gurion declaring Israel founded, all the aforementioned religions had a total conniption-fit expressing their protestation in various means. Most Christian faiths declared this not to be the real return of the Jews and in no way made them once again the Chosen People with the Catholic Church even declaring Israel as an abomination while much of the Islamic world and the Arab League declared total genocidal war of cleansing of the Zionist Entity. The thing which is interesting is how the Arab Islamic worlds ignore the reestablishment of the Jewish homelands of Israel by referring to Israel as the Zionist entity such that they can claim that this is not the reestablished Jewish or Israelite homelands. This is also why they also claim that the Jews of today are not related to the Jews from antiquity despite genetic proof of their having Middle Eastern DNA markers and many families have traceable histories back many centuries even beyond one millennium. They even doubt those Jewish families who have never left Jerusalem except temporarily after Christian and Islamic expulsions always to return as soon as they were able.

 

What makes much of the efforts in the modern era since 1948 to solve the various forms it has taken adjusting to changing conditions and models presented is that they take that the entirety of the problem either began in 1948 with the founding of Israel, it started with the treaties and conferences after World War I or it began with the onset of modern Zionism. These are all completely wrong, as Islam had been at active war with the Jews throughout their history at various levels. People will point to periods where Jews thrived under Islamic rulers but most of these rulers did not follow strict Sharia, the Quranic defined statutes of law. The other difficulty is that despite periods where Jews were treated fairly well, these were always limited periods similar to the periods under European rule in the various nations where Jews were accepted for periods always eventually to come under critical treatment and even actively murdered often by burning at the stake, hanging, boiled in oil and the many various tortures of the Inquisitions. Islam began with mistreatment of the Jews either demanding the Jizya, a special tax levied against non-Muslims for the privilege and protection living under Islamic rule. This tax varied depending on the requirements of the governance, the greater their need the greater the Jizya often leading to a condition which becomes unlivable. This war against the Jews began, as we pointed out at the beginning, in the year 628-9 A.D. and continued, as has the Christian warfare against the Jews, intermittently ever since or as the anti-religious forces of Communism and Nazism have constantly since their inception.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

January 4, 2018

Iran plus Korea Update

 

Iranian protests against economic stagnation, disinterest of the government placing foreign wars they chose above its people and against an oppressive regime which strangles their youth and their desires to be free and live as they choose. There have been over two or three dozen already murdered and many hundreds arrested with a good number of those likely to never be seen again and the only reaction from the government has been to televise pro-government demonstrations which were more likely than not staged using IRGC* and Basij Militias members who are a small minority of the nations but extremely loyal to the regime. Both organizations are religiously fanatical as is the government. The Iranian top leadership is made up of religious clerics, the Mullahs, who hand pick who are permitted to run for elected office thus making their appearance of democracy merely that, appearance. Nobody who would work against the Mullahs and their program of continuing the revolution spreading it at every opportunity to the remainder of the world would ever be permitted to stand for election to office. Worse yet, the elected officials also would be fully supportive of any measures the Mullahs and the Supreme Leader decide are necessary to end the protests including mass shootings of demonstrators in the streets. That is the point where many would really be interested in exactly how far President Trump and the United States might go should this become reality and hundreds, if not thousands or tens of thousands were to be gunned down on the streets of Iran.

 

The first thing to remember is that President Trump was elected largely on his domestic policy promises of curbing immigration and economic improvement through tax reform and regulations rollback. As we might recall, his slogan was “Make America Great Again” or MAGA. That is completely separate from intervening or making threats simply to prevent Iran from putting an end to internal protests which the government has already blamed on Israel and the United States claiming that the CIA and Mossad are the leaders implementing and fomenting the protest in an attempt to derail the revolution which is the core principle under which the Iranian regime operates. What it comes down to is would the United States actually resort to use of arms to prevent further regime violent pushback against the protests. Our best guess is as such, beyond what President Trump would be willing to authorize, he would first instead attempt to get United Nations Security Council to enact enforceable sanctions on Iran and, lacking that, placing United States sanctions and attempting to get other allies to also impose sanctions. As far as Security Council sanctions are concerned, after the United States veto of the Security Council vote to forbid nations from placing their embassies in Jerusalem and condemning President Trump recognizing Jerusalem making it an international city under United Nations protection from Israeli overreach, we could probably count on Russia using their veto to protect Iran from the mean United States and possibly even adding that the United States move was being taken to serve Israeli interests and nothing more. As far as getting European countries to join in sanctions, at best a few of the eastern Europeans might join in sanctions and otherwise, at best, the British might also join but Germany, France and the remainder of the European Union have Euros in their eyes when they visualize Iran and are too self-absorbed in taking advantage of monetary opportunities to join in sanctioning their potential money pit. United States sanctions of and by themselves would have little if any effect on Iran and would do little to prevent them from doing as they please, even to slaughtering the protesters en-masse, in ending the protests against the government.

 

Even if President Trump in normal times in a normal world wanted to prevent the murder of the protesters, he would need to be extremely wary of intervening as such actions would inevitably result in war. The citizens of the United States did not elect President Trump to get them into another war in the Middle East and the quickest way to assure that he would be a one term President would be to engage in another Middle East war. The United States electorate would hold him responsible and in 2020 they would elect almost anybody other than Donald Trump were he to cause a war with Iran. Further, President Trump has enough on his plate with North Korea and a looming potential for a war on that front, and even that war would be a difficult sell. The main reason that a war with North Korea might be more palatable to the United States people is Kim Jong-Un is an identifiable threat and has been pressing all the wrong buttons challenging the United States almost calling them every derogatory name in the book and despite many of those names being directed at Trump, they have not been received well by the United States voters. The United States has danced this dance with leaders from North Korea for years with each go around costing more than the previous and they are willing to risk war rather than give in to blustering blackmail. For a parallel one need look to the Barbary Pirates who would sell protection for sailors and then still kidnap United States sailors off merchant ships to ransom with along with the constantly rising price demanded for protection finally drove even President Thomas Jefferson, a devout isolationist as far as wars were concerned, to declare war on the Barbary Pirates and their respective Caliphs. North Korea is very likely approaching a similar point with the United States currently and if they push too hard, they may get something they really had not bargained for.

 

President Trump likely has little desire to enter into any wars. Iran probably is not prepared to fight a war with the United States at this moment. China does not desire to war with the United States in particular. Japan very much desires to avoid any costly wars, as their financial situation is quite precarious and just recently starting to recover. Kim Jong-Un, despite his bluster, would likely prefer to live a long life. Russian President Putin is seeking some means of extricating himself out of the war raging in Syria while retaining his naval bases on the Mediterranean Sea. Europe could not fight a meaningful war even if it was brought to their shores. Turkish President Erdoğan is prepared to fight the Kurds in order to extend his domain but is not prepared to go beyond such. Even Israel’s neighbors are not seeking an active war with Israel with Hamas settling to toss a rocket or two out of Gaza each week and Hezballah already stretched to the breaking point between Syria, Yemen and retaining control in Lebanon. Egypt has barely sufficient taste for conflict to hold its cities in the Sinai Peninsula while terrorist groups mass there for future conflict, and even they are looking towards future and hoping Egypt does not feel its hand pushed too far and react against their hold on the area. So why is North Korea‘s Kim Jong-Un testing ICBM’s and other missiles as well as nuclear weapons? Why has Japan altered the Japanese Constitution to allow them, for the first time since World War II, to increase their armaments, military size and is debating the development, which means using the technology they already possess, of nuclear weapons intended as a deterrent? Why is Iran instigating conflicts across the Middle East in Iraq, Syria and Yemen while developing ever-longer range ballistic missiles and nuclear weapons and possibly even building stockpiles of such weapons? Why has there been all the chest thumping between Kim Jong-Un and President Trump with the most recent round on Twitter being an exchange of Tweets about their nuclear button size on one another’s desk? Why is Iran once again pressing an internal conflict followed by the world to the point where sanction may very well be imposed once again? None of these acts signals a world seeking completely peaceful solution to their problems both internal and external. The two most dangerous, currently, are Iran and North Korea as we mentioned just the other day. So, why not take one last look at them and their pressing all the wrong buttons with the United States and why.

 

First North Korea, as it may be the less complicated situation currently. Kim Jong-Un did take an unexpected move and respond to urgings from the newly elected South Korean President Moon Jae-in, elected this past May of 2017, for binational talks to defuse the building tensions emanating from North Korea. The danger is that these talks fail to resolve the international situation while South Korea, currently in a mood to redress past grievances and mending fences while absolving differences. There is even some mood to sacrifice in order to reunify the Korean Peninsula should a proper and beneficial proposition be presented, though the possibilities of this are next to nil. The problem is the unknown and unpredictable results of these talks. Fears are that North Korea will press for reunification with some form of unity governance headed by Kim Jong-Un which South Korea would be foolish to permit. Almost as bad an omen would be for North Korea to offer to curb their missile tests and nuclear testing and development in exchange for aid running in the tens if not thousands of billions of dollars to be paid largely by the United States in exchange for a treaty and an end to this round of extortion. Such a demand could not come at a worse opportunity as President Trump is unlikely to swallow such a demand quietly and would likely enter into a very dangerous game of chicken with Kim Jong-Un which, with the slightest miscalculation, results in an open conflict potentially nuclear in nature. Such a conflict would have the immediate consequences of the devastation of Seoul and most if not all of South Korea, the destruction of almost all large cities of Japan, and an exchange between the United States responding to the attacks by North Korea where North Korea would also cease to be recognizable while a number of United States major cities would end up destroyed or worse, a Super EMP detonation over Kansas City area wiping out the North American electrical grid potentially destroying over half of the main transformers upon which the grid is dependent. What would follow would very likely be extremely destructive for much of the world should China, Russia or anyone else left standing decide it was time to strike while the irons of war were hot only to run afoul of the United States submarine nuclear retaliatory forces which are quite formidable and perfectly capable of carrying out countering any threat to the United States, especially the few naval and air bases which would remain to the United States military which is spread across the globe and thus would still be operational even if in a somewhat less formidable manner. When a nation is capable of destroying the entirety of the planet hundreds of times over, even twenty percent force power is sufficient to make anyone hesitate pressing too far.

 

World at War from 1984 by George Orwell

World at War from 1984 by George Orwell

 

Iran, on the other hand, is a completely different kettle of fish. Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution Sayyid Ali Hosseini Khamenei is tasked with the spread of the Grand Islamic Revolution which brought the initial and previous Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution Sayyid Ruhollah Mūsavi Khomeini to power after United States President Jimmy Carter refused to defend Shah of Iran Mohammad Reza Pahlavi and actually signaled he should go into exile and allow Khomeini to come to power and out of his exile in Paris. President Carter was quoted as claiming that as a religious man and a cleric that Khomeini would be a man of peace and would bring a reformation to Iran which would be a positive force in settling the Middle East. President Carter really had no clue about Shiite Islam or Islam in general. The Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution is responsible for keeping the faith and extending the revolution, as it is called, by which in time two events will result. The first is that the Islamic world will bow to the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution and see him as the Strong Horse and the Sunni Muslims will largely convert to Shia Islam rather than be put to the sword. Once the world of Islam has been conquered by the true Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution, then the remainder of the world can be brought under the flag of Islam and Sharia Shiite style. This will lead to a world in conflagration which is believed to be when the Mahdi will appear and protest his being revealed to the world as explained by Nu’aym ibn Hammad who stated, “The Mahdi will not come until one third die, one third are killed, and one third remain.” One can only imagine a world which meets those criteria. This is the far vision each Iranian Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution must adhere. This is not meant to claim that the present Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution Sayyid Ali Hosseini Khamenei desires to force such a world into being, but that does not mean that he would be reluctant to take any position which could result in the coming of the Mahdi. The eventual aim of the Iranian version of Shiite Islam is the coming of the Mahdi and the submission of what remains of the world to Allah through Shiite Islam with no other religion permitted on Earth. Still, Iran is not ready to take on the world and this attempt to reach this desired aim to subjugate the world with it suffering two-thirds of human life snuffed from existence in a great conflict, but once they believe they have reached such a threshold, then will come a conflagration unparalleled in known human history. There are some who point to evidence that some form of humankind existed which were more advanced than our technology today and were involved in a great cataclysm ending their civilization and humankind went through an extended era where the knowledge returning to a more primitive humankind and we are only now reaching for similar technologies if not the identical technologies with which our forebearers destroyed themselves. The state of our world today gives such a theory some degree of credence.

 

The frightening reality reached in researching for this article was that we really are about to go beyond the cusp. The only question is beyond which cusp will we go? Many, if not the vast majority, of these choices would have us going beyond the cusp and finding ourselves tumbling into a deep and endless chasm and taking all of our so-called civilization with us into oblivion. There are a few narrow choices where going beyond the cusp leads the human race into the stars and eventually to a space filled initially with peace and beyond that depends on what we encounter. If we will be destined to meet extraterrestrial intelligent entities, we can only pray that they are peaceful and willing to share knowledge, technologies and the arts which make their hearts soar. But first, we will be required to get our own houses in order and eschew violence as the means of settling our differences. Truth be told, our differences are minor compared to what we may find in the stars, so we had best learn how to handle our petty differences first and foremost, then we can find the best means of coexisting or merging everything into a set of universal truths which are inclusive and satisfactory to all establishing ideals as close to the real truth as we are able. The truth is that our knowledge will never be capable of understanding the entirety of the Universe as much, if not the vast majority, will remain beyond that which we can see and every minute we spend trapped as we are in this one solar system, the less and less we will ever have revealed will represent. Human curiosity is a strange beast which will insist on seeing what is around the next bend, beyond the horizon, and comes tomorrow and tomorrow in endless succession and finally, why all of these things exist and where they came from. But for now, can we at least survive without destroying civilization until we colonize another planet orbiting a different parent star. Such an accomplishment would promise survivability to the human race. After such has been achieved, then we can place starter colonies jumping from one star to the next setting up workable colonies which can grow into entirely new civilization but which will share their advancements with the rest of humankind and perhaps also other intelligent species we should meet, assuming that such exist. So, let us proceed forward and pray we choose wisely and do not falter or find ourselves at the brink of extinction with no way to prevent going beyond the cusp and falling to our deaths and as such our failings.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

* IRGC = Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps

 

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