Iran, which was called Persia until 1935, is a friend of Russia and a vicious enemy of Israel. In September 2008, Israel’s ambassador to the United States, Sallai Meridor, warned that Russian arms sales to Iran and Syria are “destabilizing and dangerous for Israel” (“Israel Irked by Iran-Russia Military Ties,” PressTV.ir, Sept. 13, 2008). Russia is a major player in providing Iran with nuclear technology and high-tech armaments. In 2009, Iran’s defense ministry hailed the nation’s military ties to Russia (AP, Feb. 20, 2009). Earlier this month, Iran’s president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, said “the ultimate goal of world forces must be the annihilation of Israel” (Jerusalem Post, Aug. 2, 2012). On August 17, Ahmadinejad called Israel a “cancerous tumor” that will soon be destroyed, and the next day a top Iranian military commander said he would welcome an Israeli strike against Iran’s nuclear facilities because it would give his nation a reason to retaliate and “get rid of the Jewish state forever” (“Top Iranian Commander,” The Blaze, Aug. 18, 2012). According to Bible prophecy, the armies of Persia will join Russia’s attack on Israel and suffer destruction with her. “And say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against thee, O Gog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal: And I will turn thee back, and put hooks into thy jaws, and I will bring thee forth, and all thine army, horses and horsemen, all of them clothed with all sorts of armour, even a great company with bucklers and shields, all of them handling swords: Persia, Ethiopia, and Libya with them; all of them with shield and helmet. ... And I will plead against him with pestilence and with blood; and I will rain upon him, and upon his bands, and upon the many people that are with him, an overflowing rain, and great hailstones, fire, and brimstone” (Ezekiel 38:3-5, 22).
(Friday Church News Notes, August 24, 2012, www.wayoflife.org, firstname.lastname@example.org, 866-295-4143)
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