The Brexit

Many fear a British exit from the EU would have devastating effects on the economy, possibly “forcing” many jobs to follow.  Some are concerned that it would be the end of London as the financial center of Europe.

On the other side of the coin many in England do not fancy being told what to do by the EU;  they feel that they are losing their sovereignty, economy and rights that they have always had.

Either way from a human point of view there are too many unknowns and uncertainties.  From a biblical point of view it appears that they will leave and eventually try to come back, but won’t be allowed (Hosea 5:13). This makes the following quote even more prescient:

Guy Verhofstadt  said, “May I give also an advice: Don’t think that after a ‘no’ you can come back,” despite expressing a wish for Britain not to leave in the first place.

Prime Minister David Cameron vowed late Friday to wage a relentless campaign to keep Britain in the European Union after striking a deal with fellow leaders that he said would transform the country’s relationship with the 28-member bloc.

The deal…paves the way for a June referendum in Britain on the country’s long-ambivalent membership. If the country leaves the E.U., it would become the first country to do so, and its departure could trigger a broader unraveling at a time when the union faces greater challenges than at any point in decades.

Cameron had demanded far-reaching concessions from his E.U. counterparts, saying that he needed to prove to increasingly populist voters that an institution often seen in Britain as an overbearing infringement on national sovereignty could loosen its grip. But continental leaders, who support keeping Britain in the club, drove a tough bargain, and some bridled at what they regarded as a British attempt to blackmail the bloc into giving the country a special deal.
In the end, Cameron received significantly less than what he had initially sought. But he still claimed victory Friday night and immediately pivoted to what is certain to be an emotional and bitterly fought campaign over the country’s future in the body that has defined Europe’s postwar order.

“The British people must now decide whether to stay in this reformed European Union or to leave,” he said. “This will be a once-in-a-generation moment to shape the destiny of our country.”

Campaigners for a British exit — popularly known as Brexit — vehemently disagreed. Nigel Farage, leader of the anti-E.U. U.K. Independence Party, tweeted that the agreement was “a truly pathetic deal. Let’s Leave the EU, control our borders, run our own country and stop handing £55m [$80 million] every day to Brussels.”

Polls once showed a clear majority for “in.” But they have tightened markedly in recent months, and most now show that the contest could go either way. The United States and other major British allies have lined up in favor of Britain staying in the E.U., arguing the country’s influence would be vastly diminished if it leaves.

Source: European leaders strike deal to try to keep Britain in the E.U. – The Washington Post

The Pope to Meet With Patriarch of Orthodox Ethiopian Church

This is second such leader in as many weeks to foster better relations with the pope.

Vatican City – On Monday, 29 February, the Holy Father Francis will meet with His Holiness Abuna Mathias, Patriarch of the Orthodox Tewahedo Church of Ethiopia….

The Orthodox Tewahedo Church of Ethiopia currently consists of 35 million faithful, and a large community exists in Rome. It enjoys cordial and increasingly close relations with the Catholic Church….

Source: VIS news – Holy See Press Office: Francis to meet the Patriarch of the Orthodox Tewahedo Church of Ethiopia

Turkey’s Increasingly Desperate Predicament

Turkey [modern day Edom; Psalm 83:6] will eventually unite with a confederacy of Middle Eastern nations and Germany [modern day Assyria] with the intention of completely obliterating Israel (Psalm 83:4).  In the end Germany that will be the undoing of Turkey (Obadiah 1:6-9) and not Russia/Syria.

Turkey is confronting what amounts to a strategic nightmare as bombs explode in its cities, its enemies encroach on its borders and its allies seemingly snub its demands.

As recently as four years ago, Turkey appeared poised to become one of the biggest winners of the Arab Spring, an ascendant power hailed by the West as a model and embraced by a region seeking new patrons and new forms of governance.

All that has evaporated since the failure of the Arab revolts, shifts in the geopolitical landscape and the trajectory of the Syrian war.

Russia, Turkey’s oldest and nearest rival, is expanding its presence around Turkey’s borders — in Syria to the south, in Crimea and Ukraine to the north, and in Armenia to the east. On Saturday, Russia’s Defense Ministry announced the deployment of a new batch of fighter jets and combat helicopters to an air base outside the Armenian capital, Yerevan, 25 miles from the Turkish border.

Blowback from the Syrian war in the form of a string of suicide bombings in Istanbul and Ankara, most recently on Wednesday, has brought fear to Turkish streets and dampened the vital tourist industry.

The collapse of a peace process with Turkey’s Kurds has plunged the southeast of the country into war between Kurds and the Turkish military just as Syrian Kurds carve out their own proto-state in territories adjacent to Turkey’s border.

The economy is in the doldrums, hit by fears of instability and by sanctions from Moscow targeting such goods and revenue sources as Turkish tomatoes and tourism in retaliation for the downing of a Russian plane in November.

Worries that the tensions could escalate further are spreading, both in Turkey and in the international community, prompting French President François Hollande to warn on Friday that “there is a risk of war between Turkey and Russia.”

“Turkey is facing a multifaceted catastrophe,” said Gokhan Bacik, professor of international relations at Ankara’s Ipek University. “This is a country that has often had problems in the past, but the scale of what is happening now is beyond Turkey’s capacity for digestion.”

A rift with the United States, Turkey’s closest and most vital ally, over the status of the main Syrian Kurdish militia, the People’s Protection Units (YPG), has further exposed Turkey’s vulnerability. A demand by President Recep Tayyep Erdogan that Washington choose between NATO ally Turkey and the YPG, its main Syrian ally in the fight against the Islamic State, was rebuffed by the State Department this month, despite Turkish allegations that the YPG had carried out the bombing in Ankara.

“It has so alienated everyone it cannot convince anyone to do anything,” he said. “It is a country whose words no longer carry any weight. It bluffs but does not deliver. It cannot protect its vital interests, and it is at odds with everyone, including its allies.

“I’m not saying that Turkey has lost its mind and is poised for war, but the posture in Ankara is very strange and could lead to surprises,” he said. “What’s happening in Syria is a question of survival for Erdogan, so it is not possible to rule anything out.

“For Turkey,” he added, “there is no good scenario from now on.”

Source: Turkey’s increasingly desperate predicament poses real dangers – The Washington Post

Large Fireball Falls to Earth

Meteors may account for some of the events of the sixth and/or seventh seals of Revelation.  Here we are given a small glimpse of the devastation they can cause.

A huge fireball crashed into the Atlantic earlier this month – and went almost unseen. The event took place on February 6 at 14:00 UTC when a meteor exploded in the air 620 miles (1,000km) off the coast of Brazil. It released energy equivalent to 13,000 tons of TNT, which is the same as the energy used in the first atomic weapon that leveled Hiroshima in 1945.

As impacts go, this was pretty small,’ Plait writes in an in-depth report in his Slate blog.

Source: Nasa reports largest fireball since Chelyabinsk falls into Earth | Daily Mail Online