If you are familiar with the geopolitical situation as it was in Europe back in July 1914 one could say that there are parallels to the situation in the Middle East right now. Both situations involve several countries in chains of complicated alliances. One major difference though, is that the winds of war in Europe were fanned by nationalism and today in the Middle East it is fanned by sectarian zeal.
In Europe in 1914 one country after another in a chain reaction declared sides and mobilized its armed forces. So we are starting to see the same thing in the Middle East today.
The DEBKAfile site reports that King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia has placed its armed forces on the highest alert to defend its border with Iraq due fears of an advance by ISIS forces to seize the Iraqi/Saudi border crossing. In addition, Egypt is offering to airlift in commandos to help the Saudis. A mobilization of a country’s armed forces is a fairly strong sign that all-out war is a possibility.
But in addition to the Saudis going on alert, airplanes full of armaments are landing at airbases to arm the two sides. Of Iran arming the Iraqi Shi’as on one side, the DEBKAfile article states,
“At least two cargo planes from bases in Iran were landing daily at Baghdad’s military airport, carrying 150 tons of military equipment. More than 1,000 tons were flown in this past week alone. Tehran has replicated for the Iraqi army the routine it established for Bashar Assad’s army, furnishing its needs on a daily basis as per its commanders’ requests. Those requests come before a joint Iranian-Iraqi headquarters set up at the Iraqi high command in Baghdad for approval and the assigning of priorities for shipment.”
And of support for ISIS,
“At the same time, Saudi arms are flowing to the Iraqi Sunni tribes fighting alongside the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) against the Iraqi army and the Shiite Nouri al-Maliki’s government,” and
“…on Tuesday June 24, unmarked civilian cargo planes landed at the base, bringing arms shipments from Saudi Arabia. The response was swift. Syrian warplanes, on their first bombing mission inside Iraq, tried to damage the partially repaired runways at H-2 to prevent any more Saudi air shipments from landing.”
What might have been a war between sides using rifles, is now escalating with more equipment. Also, this places Saudi Arabia at direct odds with Iran in what is so far, a proxy war for them. This report also sheds light on two recent news stories. The first is that just six days ago there was a report that the Saudis denied funding ISIS. Well, it looks like someone in Saudi Arabia is helping ISIS. So why would the Saudis go on high alert against ISIS? Perhaps the Saudis want to help ISIS, but only if they stay in Iraq. Secondly, it was reported that Syrian warplanes bombed ISIS positions in Iraq. And now we have a better understanding of what was bombed.
So Iraq is the battleground. ISIS fighters are setting up a terrorist state. Iran is assisting the Shi’a Iraqis with arms and Basiji fighters. The Syrians are now bombing ISIS positions, which, as DEBKAfile reports demonstrates, “the tight operational sync between the Iranian command centers in Damascus and Baghdad, which are attached respectively to the high commands of the Syrian and Iraqi armies.”
With Saudi Arabia mobilizing, and Egypt flying in troops, that makes if my counting is correct, five countries and one terrorist pseudo-state all involved.
With the escalation to a wider war with more nations involved, and arms and support flowing into both sides, it seems the ISIS conflict is blowing up into a regional war.
Since each of the four horsemen of Revelation 6 are themselves the sign that a Signpost is to begin, as the rider of the white horse was a prelude to the lion of Iraq being forced to be a democracy, are we seeing the second horseman riding out right now? When the second horseman rides out that will be the announcement that the Second Signpost has started – as war accelerates in the Middle East between Muslims. Let us look at the passage in Revelation 6:3-4,
“When the Lamb opened the second seal, I heard the second living creature say, “Come!” Then another horse came out, a fiery red one. Its rider was given power to take peace from the earth and to make men slay each other. To him was given a large sword.”
The “peace” he is to take from the earth is peace of mind, not absence of war. This will happen when Iran takes over one quarter of the earth’s oil fields. The war itself is restricted to the Muslim realm as it says of all four horsemen in Revelation 6:8b,
“They were given power over a fourth of the earth to kill by sword, famine and plague, and by the wild beasts of the earth.”
The first horseman was out for 24 years (1979-2003) before the lion was forced to stand and its mind was changed. The second horseman may be out for a time prior to the full and proper invasion by Iran. The Bible does not tell us how the invasion begins, but I cannot think of a better situation for Iran than this bubbling cauldron of growing war. Maybe this is why the ram of Daniel 8 is able to run out and do what it wants – all its neighbors will exhaust themselves against each other in the months ahead.
After all, thinking back to World War I, isn’t that one major factor why the United States advanced relatively quickly in the trenches in France in 1917 after two sides had been fighting each other for three long and bloody years?