"The Gaza Strip is a boiling pot, the fire underneath is
fueled by economy and ideology, and the lid over it is Israel.
Hamas is currently not acting against Israel because it is not
in the group's interest, but one must not mistake this with
the organization's ultimate goals."
Hamas has gone from being a terrorist group to becoming a
full-fledged army, with four brigades made up of battalions
and platoons. They are in possession of anti-tank and
anti-aircraft weapons, Katyusha rocket battalions, and Hamas
boasts an infantry numbering more than 13,000 recruits.
It is Israel's nightmare scenario: a fully-equipped enemy
military force in Hamas, another fully-equipped Hezbollah
military force in Lebanon, and an increasingly belligerent
regime in Syria poised for war.
Meanwhile, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who has
repeatedly promised to wipe Israel from the map, has traveled
to Damascus for meetings with Syria's Bashar Assad, who was
sworn in this week for another seven-year term as Syrian
In addition to meeting with Assad, Ahmadinejad is also
planning to meet with Hamas and Hezbollah officials.
Israel has every reason to be concerned. Asked about the
possibility of another war breaking out in the region, the
Iranian president replied, "We hope the summer will bring
victories to the region's nations and failures to their
The Iranian president called on the region's states to be
alert in the face of Israel's attempts to rehabilitate itself
after what he defined as its "failure" in the Second Lebanon
Ahmadinejad warned that Israel may take action to
compensate itself for those failures.
"The Zionist regime has lost its ideology of existence and
will therefore try to compensate for its failures,"
Ahmadinejad told the Syrian press. "This issue should lead to
a state of high alert among the region's nations, particularly
among the Palestinians and Lebanese."
Nowhere in the Middle East is there a nation on a higher
state of alert than Israel.
However, according to the Bible, it is Damascus that should
be worried. I realize I have written about this prophecy
recently, but the situation in that area seems to be moving
into the perimeters of its predictions so rapidly, that it
The Prophet Isaiah was given a burden concerning the city
of Damascus, which he recorded in Isaiah 17:1:
"The burden concerning Damascus. Behold, Damascus is taken
away from being a city, and it shall be a ruinous heap."
Damascus is the oldest continuously inhabited city on
earth. Many historians date the city back to the dawn of human
Damascus has been conquered many times; by the Assyrians,
the Persians, the Seleucids, the Romans, Byzantines, Omayyeds,
Seljuks, Mamelukes and the Ottoman Empire.
But through all its long history, Damascus has never been
destroyed. It has never been 'taken away from being a
city' and it has never been left a 'ruinous heap.'
The prophet Isaiah says the destruction of Damascus is tied
to some catastrophe that befalls Israel:
"And in that day it shall come to pass, that the glory of
Jacob shall fade, and the fatness of his flesh shall grow
But, says Isaiah, "gleaning grapes shall be left in it, as
the shaking of an olive tree, two or three berries in the top
of the uppermost bough, four or five in its outmost fruitful
branches, says the LORD God of Israel."
Israel will suffer much, Isaiah prophesies, but it will
survive. "In that day shall his strong cities be as a forsaken
bough, and an uppermost branch, which they left because of the
children of Israel: and there shall be desolation."
Israel's catastrophe comes, according to the prophet, as
part of a catastrophe that involves many nations. A major war
between Israel and Syria and its allies fits Isaiah 17:13 like
"The nations shall rush like the rushing of many waters:
but God shall rebuke them, and they shall flee far off, and
shall be chased as the chaff of the mountains before the wind,
and like a rolling thing before the whirlwind."
Moreover, the destruction of Damascus will be virtually
instantaneous. Says Isaiah 17:14:
"And behold at evening time trouble; and before the morning
he is no more."
The time of this ancient prophecy's fulfillment truly
appears to me to be soon.