The Middle East has been blowing up since President Trump last week changed US policy to recognize Jerusalem as the official capital of Israel.
There has been much strife in Jerusalem and the West Bank with Palestinians violently protesting against the move. And, of course, Israel has had to use violence at times to keep order.
Erdogan himself has been using dangerous rhetoric to keep the situation as hot as possible, calling Israel a terrorist state that kills Palestinian children:
“Israel is a perfect invader state,” Erdoğan said. He also called Israel “a terrorist state.” “We won’t leave Jerusalem to the mercy of a child-murdering country.”
Netanyahu hit right back, saying:
“I‘m not used to receiving lectures about morality from a leader who bombs Kurdish villages in his native Turkey, who jails journalists, helps Iran go around international sanctions and who helps terrorists, including in Gaza, kill innocent people…”
As usual, Netanyahu nailed it.
This morning Erdogan was at it again, this time attacking the US and making ominous threats against the ‘owners of Jerusalem’:
DAILY SABAH – President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said Monday that the U.S. is responsible for the bloodshed in Jerusalem after clashes erupted in the city following U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision to recognize it as the capital of Israel.
“Those who turn Jerusalem into a prison for Muslims and members of other religions will never be able to clear the blood off their hands,” Erdoğan said at an event held in the capital Ankara.
Stressing that Washington is also responsible for the bloodshed in the area, the president said of Trump’s decision to move the U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv to Jerusalem: “The U.S. has become a partner in bloodshed by recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. We definitely do not recognize this decision, we will not recognize it. President Trump’s statement does not bind us, nor the world of Islam.”
Erdogan then said something that I would characterize as ominous:
Erdoğan underlined that the continuation of vandalism and oppression in Jerusalem is not possible. The president warned that those who deem themselves as the owners of the city will not even be able to find a tree to hide themselves behind.
Does that sound familiar? Maybe you’ll recall a similar passage from the words of Muhammed in the Hadith:
The last hour would not come unless the Muslims will fight against the Jews and the Muslims would kill them until the Jews would hide themselves behind a stone or a tree and a stone or a tree would say: Muslim, or the servant of Allah, there is a Jew behind me; come and kill him…
Now it sounds like Erdogan himself is using his very own apocalyptic texts in his threats. That is not good.
The president vowed that the struggle will not be finalized until a Palestinian state with the borders of 1967 is established. “This struggle will not end until the establishment of a sovereign and independent Palestinian state, whose capital is the city of east Jerusalem, within the borders of 1967. There is a role of the U.S. and European politics that supports Israel’s unjust occupation and settlements in what is happening today.”
So we have what I believe are three very important and ominous threats from Erdogan.
First he calls Israel and “invader state” and says he will not leave Jerusalem to the mercy of the Israelis.
Secondly, he uses apocalyptic language in telling the Israelis they will have nowhere to hide.
Lastly, he says this ‘struggle’ over Jerusalem won’t end until a Palestinian state is established with east Jerusalem as its capital.
Now you know as well as I do that there will likely never be a peaceful agreement that ends with a Palestinian state with east Jerusalem as its capital, especially after this move by Trump in standing with Israel.
But the reason this is so ominous is that we know from Ezekiel 38 that Turkey and Iran leads an invasion of Jerusalem. Jesus talks about in Matthew 24 and Luke 21 that the antichrist will invade and warn that when they see armies surrounding Jerusalem, they should run for the mountains.
In Joel 4 God judges those nations who scattered his people and divided up his land:
For see, in those days and at that time,
when I restore the fortunes
of Judah and Jerusalem,
I will gather all the nations
and bring them down to the Valley of Jehoshaphat.
There I will enter into judgment with them
on behalf of my people, my heritage, Israel;
Because they scattered them among the nations,
they divided up my land.
My point is that while we are not yet at the point where Turkey and Iran lead an invasion of Jerusalem, I believe we are seeing the very beginnings of these events.
Just in Istanbul over the weekend, hundreds of thousands of Muslims gathered in Yenikapi park in the name of Jerusalem being Muslim and chanted slogans like “we will liberate al-Aqsa, even if our blood flowed.” They are referring to the al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem.
Or as another account put it, they will sacrifice their blood for Jerusalem.
It’s clear that the ‘ground’ in Turkey and other areas of the Middle East is very fertile when it comes to anger over the so-called Israeli occupation of Jerusalem. And if there is one thing that can unify the Muslim world like no other, this is it.
I would definitely call this a sign of the times, and those ‘times’ may be on us quicker than we realize.