Mid-East Conflict

The unrest in the Middle-East focuses on the civil struggle between the government of Israel and its Palestinian people who want to establish a separate Palestinian state. Most of the Arab and/or Islamic nations in the area are also involved. The United States, the U.N., the European Union, and even Russia are all trying to broker peace in the region.

The current wave of violence could die out and become one of many such cycles in the area, or it could lead to more serious war. The outcome of this war could be a most welcome peace agreement.

Such a peace agreement might be just another phase in the age-old struggle between these nations, or it could be the false peace mentioned in 1 Thessalonians 5:3. While people are saying, "Peace and safety," destruction will come on them suddenly, as labor pains on a pregnant woman, and they will not escape. (NIV)

When Israel finally is at peace, it will be the first time since they became a nation in 1948 that they have enjoyed such security. This could cause them to lower their guard, which would set the scene for yet another war, such as the one predicted in Ezekiel 38 and 39. (Many good Bible teachers think that war is more likely at the end of the Tribulation, but it does not correspond exactly to the Battle of Armageddon.) If it does come before the Tribulation, it will most likely correspond to the 2nd Seal of Revelation 6.

The dramatic end of this great war of the 2nd Seal could produce the treaty predicted in Daniel 9:27, which many prophecy scholars identify as the beginning of the seven-year Tribulation period.

Key Scriptures
Current Events
Conflict Links
Insight from 2008 In Review - The Year In Prophecy

Key Scriptures

Click on one of these
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the passage.
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Go To Bible GatewayGo To Blue Letter Bible
NIV & Other VersionsIncludes Commentary
Jeremiah 6:14 Further Study
Ezekiel Chapters 38 & 39 Further Study
Daniel 9:27 Further Study
Zechariah 12:2-3 Further Study
1 Thessalonians 5:2-3 Further Study
Revelation 6:3-4 Further Study

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Current Events

See also:
The Israel-Lebanon War
Wars and Rumors of Wars
The War of Gog and Magog
The New Cold War

Notice: Sources often remove their news links after a period of time. Some of them move older stories to a subscription-only section. Even if the story is no longer on line, our summary will still be available on this page.

Newer Articles: Since Jan. 1, 2009

Netanyahu Makes Israel's Case the World Over

Dec. 31, 2008 - As the Israeli-Hamas war continues, former Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu is taking time out to explain Israel's position to news outlets.
“Hamas is saying that they can target and hide behind civilians, and then telling Israel that we can’t take action because civilians will get hurt."
He argues that if the international community allows Hamas to do this they will encourage all terrorists to use this tactic. Thousands of Hamas rockets have been launched against Israel's cities. Israel must now do what Britan did in World War II. They are forced to take action to defend themselves.
Source: Israel National News
Israeli Cabinet votes to resume heavy attacks on Gaza Strip - 391 killed so far - Palestine News Network

Israel Vows Relentless Campaign Against Hamas

Dec. 30, 2008 - According to Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, the aerial bombing of Hamas facilities is "the first of several" that have been approved. A spokesman for Defense Minister Ehud Barak said Israel was prepared for "long weeks of military action."
Source: Fox

Israel At 'War to the Bitter End,' Strikes Key Hamas Sites

Dec. 29, 2008 - Ehud Barak, Israel's defense minister, said that Israel has tried many times to facilitate peace with the Palestinian people, but Hamas, the militant faction, has continued to attack Israel with rockets.
"But this is an all-out war against Hamas and its branches. The restraint that we have demonstrated is the source of our strength when it is time to fight."
Air assaults against Hamas targets has resulted in a death toll so far of 320. Of these, 51 were civilians. Israeli ground troops are waiting at the border in case they are needed.
Source: Fox
Israel in 'all-out war' with Hamas - Al Jazeera
Gaza strikes challenge for Obama - Al Jazeera

Scores die in Israeli air strikes

Dec. 27, 2008 - Just days after the end of a cease-fire with Hamas, Israel has launched F-16 bomber attacks against Hamas security compounds and militant bases in the Gaza Strip. The strikes followed numerous rocket attacks by Palestinian militants aimed at Israeli towns. At least 155 people have been killed and another 200 injured.
In a statement, Israel's military said it targeted "Hamas terror operatives" as well as training camps and weaponry storage warehouses.
Source: BBC
At least 228 die as Israel hammers Hamas-run Gaza - AFP
Barak in US interview: Israel won't accept ceasefire with Hamas - Jerusalem Post

Israel warns Hamas over rockets

Dec. 26, 2008 - Last week Hamas ended a six-month ceasefire with Israel in the Gaza Strip. Since then they have launched some 50 rockets into Israel. Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said he would not hesitate to strike Hamas and another militant group, Islamic Jihad, for their aggression.
Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni warned Israel "cannot tolerate" Palestinian militants targeting Israeli citizens.
Source: BBC

Quartet: US-led Mideast talks 'irreversible'

Dec. 16, 2008 - The Mideast Quartet met yesterday, and said that there is no turning back from the process of negotiations begun last November in Annapolis, Maryland. So far, the talks have failed to produce a peace agreement.
US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice spoke about a US-drafted resolution on the Israeli-Palestinian negotiations the UN Security Council is expected to vote on Tuesday.
Source:YNet News
New resolution on Mideast peace passes at UN - First United Nations Security Council resolution on the peace process in five years - Christian Science Monitor
UN resolution a positive step in promoting Middle East peace process -Chinaview
UN adopts measure backing Annapolis - Jerusalem Post

Middle East Quartet to Meet in New York on December 15

Dec. 13, 2008 - At the urging of the current president of the European Union, the "Quartet" of Middle East peace negotiators (EU, Russia, the United Nations and the United States) will meet at U.N. headquarters in New York on December 15. Foreign ministers of some Arab countries will also participate. Most observers do not think any solution will be adopted this year.
Source: ABC

Obama may make Powell Mideast envoy

Dec. 13, 2008 - Sources in Washington told Ynet that President-elect Obama wants to establish a special peace envoy to the Middle East, and former Secretary of State Colin Powell is a serious option.
Powell – a Republican statesman ... served as national security advisor under the President Ronald Reagan, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under President George H.W. Bush and secretary of state in the George W. Bush administration.
Powell is not the only option. Former chief negotiator Dennis Ross, ex-Ambassador Daniel Kurtzer are also under consideration for the role. It is not clear how Hillary Clinton, who has been chosen to be the next Secretary of State, will feel about a dignitary to the Middle East who will report directly to the President instead of her.
Source: YNet News

Obama to adopt Saudi plan, ram home Israel-Arab peace deal

Nov. 17, 2008 - Advisors close to President-Elect Obama told London's Sunday Times that he plans to give top priority to concluding an Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement based on the 2002 Saudi peace proposal.
[The plan] offers the Jewish state broad acceptance in the region in exchange for surrendering 100 percent of the eastern half of Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria and the Golan Heights.
If Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni, becomes Israel's Prime Minister, it is likely that she can gain acceptance of the plan by Israel. But if Benjamin Netanyahu becomes Israel's next Prime Minister, he will oppose the plan since he is against land-for-peace negotiations.
Source: Israel Today

Israel's Livni to brief Quartet next week on peace progress

Nov. 3, 2008 - Israeli Foreign Affairs Minister Tzipi Livni will join her Palestinian counterpart Ahmed Qureia to meet with representatives of The Quartet (United States, European Union, United Nations and Russia) next Sunday in the resort city of Sharm el-Sheikh. The event will take place on the anniversary of the Annapolis peace accords. They will brief attendants on the progress achieved so far in peace negotiations.
The US will be represented by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, the architect of the Annapolis summit and the leading American figure involved in the talks.
Source: YNet News

Egypt preparing for attack against Israel

Nov. 3, 2008 - On Sunday Israeli politician Avigdor Lieberman told "Meet the Press" that Egypt is just waiting for the right opportunity to move troops back into the Sinai Peninsula in violation of the peace agreement.
Warning that Egypt was liable to surprise Israel with an attack, as it did in 1973, he continued: "There are enough signs and enough assessments that Egypt is waiting for the right moment."
Source: Ha'Aretz

U.S. Raid In Syria To Stop Al-Qaida Smuggling Into Iraq...
Mideast: Putting the 'Peace Puzzle' Together

Oct. 28, 2008 - Because Syria has apparently ignored terrorist activity the U.S. conducted a helicopter attack on the home of Abu Ghadiyah, a senior al-Qaeda official. Ghadiyah is responsible for funneling gunmen, weapons and cash across the border to bolster the insurgency against the Iraqi government.
It was the first U.S. military attack on Syrian soil since 2003, when U.S. troops invaded Iraq, evidence that the Syrian border remains a battleground.
Source: CBN
Syria 'Gave Green Light For Raid' - Sky News
Syria threatens to halt Iraq border cooperation over U.S. raid - Ha'Aretz

French FM says Mideast peace deal unlikely in 2008

Oct. 4, 2008 - The US-backed Middle East peace plan is moving ahead, but French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner said that it is unlikely that it will be completed by the end of the year. He made the remarks after meeting with Palestinian prime minister Salam Fayyad during a short visit to the area.
"We were supposed to get the document, not a final result but something, before the end of the year. But now we all know it will take a little bit longer."
He promised the Palestinians that they will ultimately get their state.
Source: Yahoo

Egypt to host 'Annapolis 2' peace summit in November

Oct. 3, 2008 - Representatives of Israel, the Palestinian Authority and the Quartet (United States, Russia, European Union and United Nations) have agreed to attend an international summit in Egypt next month November. The Israeli and PA participants will brief the Quartet over progress made in the peace talks so far.
[The] November summit will probably take place in Sharm el-Sheikh on the anniversary of last year's Annapolis summit. Quartet representatives, including its Middle East envoy, former British prime minister Tony Blair, will participate as well as officials from Jordan and Egypt.
Source: Ha'Aretz

Abbas: Reach peace agreement by year's end

Sept. 6, 2008 - According to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, the effort continues to reach a final status peace agreement with Israel by the end of the year. He said that they will not accept a partial document that would still not settle key issues until a later date.
Palestinian officials close to the talks have said some progress has been made on the issue of borders, but the issue of Jerusalem, especially the walled Old City with its Jewish, Muslim and Christian holy sites, appears as stuck as ever.
Another disagreement is whether or not to allow Palestinian refugees and their descendants to return.
Source: Yahoo

Arab Media: Rice Urging Division of Jerusalem

Sept. 2, 2008 - Official Palestinian Authority media outlets are saying that Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is pressing Israel to agree to a division of land by the end of the year that would grant the Palestinians a portion of Jerusalem.
Source: Israel National News - from Aaron Klein, Jerusalem Bureau Chief for WorldNetDaily.com
Palestinian media: Rice urging division of Jerusalem - WorldNetDaily

Rice: peace deal still possible before Bush leaves

Aug. 27, 2008 - Preparing to wrap up her latest diplomatic trip to Israel and the Palestinian territories, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said, "God willing" there could still be a Mideast peace agreement before the end of President Bush's term in office." She said she had experienced a series of very good discussions. However, she said that the growth of Jewish settlements is a major obstacle to the process.
Source: Washington Times

Hizbullah no match for IDF, says senior officer

Aug. 4, 2008 - Israel has a new Armor Corps Commander, Brigadier-General Agai Yehezkel. He told new recruits Sunday that even though Hizbullah boasts about its continued strengthening since the end of the Second Lebanon War, they "may be surprised with just how ready" Israel is for whatever they might have planned.
Source: YNet
Hizbullah: Ready for war - YNet

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert Steps Down In September
Aug. 2, 2008
Who Will Lead Israel?
Chances are, Shaul Mofaz, a former military chief and defense minister who has threatened to attack Iran, will be the next choice for Prime Minister.
Source: U.S. News and World Report

Official: Olmert to give Palestinians state before quitting
Prime minister plans to accelerate negotiations to reach deal on paper by next month.
Source: WorldNetDaily

Official: Olmert to seek Palestinian peace deal before leaving office

July 31, 2008 - Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert has announced that he will resign in September to enable the formation of a new government.
Until then, Olmert will remain caretaker prime minister, enabling him to push ahead with the peace talks, possibly for months... During that time Olmert will try to reach an agreement in peace talks with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.
Israeli and Palestinian negotiators recently met with U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and decided that they are going to continue to try to reach an agreement before the end of the year.
Source: Ha'Aretz
Bush extends wishes to departing PM - Jerusalem Post
Turmoil ahead for Israel after PM says he will resign - Yahoo

Hezbollah gives coffins to Israel in prisoner swap

July 16, 2008 - In what is perceived as a defeat for Israel, they have turned over 5 live prisoners to Hezbollah in exchange for two dead Israeli soldiers.
After the bodies handed over by Hezbollah were confirmed to be those of Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev, Israel was to turn over five Lebanese prisoners — including a militant convicted in what is perceived here as a monstrous attack.
Source: NY Daily News

Israel weighs Jerusalem separation

July 5, 2008 - Because of a bizzare attack of vehicles in Jerusalem by a man driving a large tractor, Deputy Prime Minister Haim Ramon has issued a call for changing the route of the city's separation barrier. The barrier now circles much of the city, but would then cut through the city between Jewish and Palestinian areas.
In the attack Wednesday, Hussam Dwayat, 30, drove a massive construction vehicle in a bloody rampage - ramming buses, crushing cars and targeting pedestrians. Three people were killed before Israeli security personnel shot and killed him.
Source: International Herald Tribune

Israel agrees to Gaza ceasefire

June 18, 2008 - Israel will begin a ceasefire with the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip on Thursday. Hamas, the Islamic military group that controls Gaza, says their soldiers will abide by the truce agreement.
Source: BBC

Rice: Israeli settlement building may harm negotiations

June 15, 2008 - Meeting with Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni in Jerusalem, US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice expressed disappointment about the continued building of new Jewish settlements.
"I am very concerned that at a time when we need to build confidence between the parties, the continued building and the settlement activity has the potential to harm the negotiations going forward.
Rise also criticized the Palestinians for impeding the peace process. She said, "We have to bring the attacks on Israeli citizens to a stop."
Source: YNET News
'Rice's criticism ruffles few feathers' - Jerusalem Post

Older Articles: Before June 9, 2008

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Links: Mid-East Conflict 2000

Middle-East Crisis - BBC

Myths of the Middle East

Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Guide To The MidEast Peace Process

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Last Updated:12/31/08
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