Thursday, December 24, 2009

Zapatero to Tab Javier Solana

Curt Here...

First off, I just want to say Merry Christmas to everyone that follows this blog. Let us never forget the true meaning of Christmas, the reason we celebrate. From Luke 2:11 - for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. Our Savior was born 2000 years ago, the Savior from my sins and yours, Praise God, and he is coming again soon.

I also want to thank everyone who reads, comments and for the many prayers from my fellow watchers. It is very much appreciated.

Thanks to shampoo, a poster over at for not only finding this article posted below but translating it into English.

Not long ago Javier Solana retired from EU politics, but it has been clear from my research and from listening to Javier Solana himself that he still has the desire to be involved in international politics. Today he got his wish as Spanish Prime Minister Zapatero has appointed Javier Solana to head the Spanish Security Strategy. This position will analyse the vital interests of the Spanish and the assessment of risks and threats to Spain.

The thing that makes this so intriguing is the fact that on January 1st, Spain will take over the rotating presidency of not only the EU, but also the WEU. Prime Minster Zapatero will head both positions. If you have been following this blog and others, you will know that the WEU controls the military power of the EU, especially in the case of crisis management. You would also know that WEU document, Recommendation 666, gives the Secretary General of the WEU power to convene the EU council in the event of an emergency. The Secretary General of the WEU is currently vacant, since Javier Solana retired.

With Javier Solana taking over Spain's security strategy, (which for the next six months will be the entire EU's security strategy since Spain will be in charge) are we seeing Javier Solana position himself in such a way that he could be put in a position of power in the event of an emergency? Obviously, it is way to soon to tell, but this latest development is quite intriguing. I will continue to watch this with great interest and report as warranted.

Stay Tuned.



Zapatero tab to Javier Solana

The former foreign minister and former senior representative of the European Union again? National policy to design the new security strategy

Fourteen years after leaving the post of foreign minister to start a fruitful career in international organizations, Javier Solana will hold office in Spanish politics. Zapatero has decided not to miss the experience and good international image until recently the High Representative for Common Foreign and Security Policy of the European Union has mandated the development of the Spanish Security Strategy. The Cabinet yesterday made official the appointment to a position that will be based on analysis of vital interest to the Spanish and the assessment of risks and threats to Spain.

After leaving his position in the European Union, Solana was signed by the ESADE business school to head its new research center in economics and geopolitics, but so far had shown no intention of returning to public office. In fact, Solana said at all times that his future would be in college. Deputy Prime Minister Maria Teresa Fernandez de la Vega, said yesterday that the Security Strategy was one of Zapatero's proposals in his inaugural speech. Now, Solana be defined before November 30 a text defining the objectives, indicate priorities, quantify budgets, secure collaboration and plan budgetary efforts for submission to Congress as the president promised.

Solana's return to the front line strengthens the profile of the Zapatero administration, which passes at this time precisely because of difficulties due to international conflict and security issues as fishing Alakrana sequestration, that of the three Spanish aid workers and the crisis in Mauritania caused by the Sahrawi activist Aminatou Haidar, occurring within days of Zapatero himself holding the rotating presidency of the European Union. International contacts also former secretary general of NATO guarantees the president a greater capacity for dialogue during this period. In his new role, Solana will report directly to the Prime Minister.

De la Vega said yesterday that the analysis of risks and threats to Spain will "make the strategic lines of action not only from the perspective of the military defense or public safety, but from all aspects of a modern concept Security demands today. Solana defined as "a person of great experience and knowledge," with a "high trajectory" and that until just weeks ago has been "a great European High Representative.

Contacts with Solana have been so secret that on Tuesday Foreign Minister Miguel Angel Moratinos, said in Congress to a request by Mr Jordi XuclĂ  CiU for the government to seize the "vast experience", pointing to Solana for any charges, saying that "if the occasion arises, the Government requested" the assistance of the former minister.

During the entire time they were occupying positions in international institutions, Solana has held sway in the party and is considered one of the most respected politicians in the PSOE. In fact, during that time continued to belong to the federal committee of the PSOE, but at the 37th Congress of the Spanish Socialists, held in 2008, was not renewed in positions of leadership.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Israel: EU Official's 'Occupation' Remark Casts Pall on Ties

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The recent rhetoric between the new EU High Representative Catherine Ashton and the nation of Israel are interesting to say the least. In response to Lady Ashton's harsh remarks earlier this week that in the EU's view, "East Jerusalem is occupied territory, together with the West Bank," Israeli government officials today responded by saying that they were surprised that she would display such criticism without even visiting Israel. They went on to say that they were particularly angry that she didn't welcome the recent Israeli declaration to freeze settlement construction for the next 10 months. Instead Ashton described the freeze as a "fist step."

Her point came through loud and clear, a 10 month temporary construction freeze will not be sufficient. This mentality within the EU is starting to become the dominate opinion as soon after Ashton's speech a number of EU MEPs from the Liberal side of the house called for punitive measures against Israel, including the suspension of the EU's Association Agreement. The Association Agreement they are referring to is the one that Israel originally agreed to under the EURO-MED Barcelona Process and then later this agreement along with Israels ENP Action plan became known as the European Neighborhood Policy.

Could this really be happening? Is the EU really threatening to break their seven year ENP agreement with Israel, if Israel does not give up Judea, Samaria and the Temple Mount and hand over these areas to the Palestinians so they can establish a Palestinian State? At the very least it is heading in this direction.

On a side note, earlier this week Javier Solana accepted a job as a professior for the ESADE Business School. He will preside over the new ESADE Centre for Global Economy and Geopolitics. The topic of Solana is still a large question to me, especially since we seem to still be advancing down the ENP path. My guess is that the whole story still has not been told.

Stay Tuned.



Israel: EU official's 'occupation' remark casts pall on ties

Government officials in Jerusalem harshly criticized the new European Union High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Catherine Ashton, for her scathing remarks about the "Israeli occupation" in her maiden speech.

Ashton on Tuesday leveled scathing criticism at Israeli policy in her first speech as the European Union's first high representative for foreign affairs and security policy.

The government officials in Jerusalem said they were surprised, dissatisfied and concerned that such a senior figure had expressed criticism before visiting Israel and learning the facts.

They said the remarks cast a pall over relations with the European Union, and that they were particularly angry that she had not welcomed the settlement construction freeze, as had her European colleagues.

The British stateswoman, who has also served as the Commissioner for Trade in the European Commission, said that in the EU's view, "East Jerusalem is occupied territory, together with the West Bank."

Ashton demanded that Israel immediately lift its blockade on the Gaza Strip, and reiterated that the union opposes the existence of the West Bank separation fence, as it opposes evictions of Palestinians from their homes in East Jerusalem.

The stateswoman, whose full title is Baroness Ashton of Upholland, also only defined Israel's partial freeze of West Bank settlement construction as a "first step," as opposed to the warmer description of the move by EU foreign ministers, who last week took "positive note" of it.

In her address to MEPs in Strasbourg, Ashton, who was only recently appointed to the new position, said she had spoken with Israelis, Palestinians and the U.S. Secretary of State about the role the Quartet of international mediators, and that of its special envoy to the region, Tony Blair.

Ashton said she had told Blair personally that, "The Quartet [a special group set up by the U.S., EU, UN and Russia] must demonstrate that it is worth the money, that it is capable of being reinvigorated."

Following her comments, a number of MEPs from the Liberal side of the house called for punitive measures against Israel, including the suspension of the EU's Association Agreement. Irish centre-left member Proinsias De Rossa, who visited the West Bank last week, called Israel's treatment of Palestinians a form of "apartheid."

This time it was neither the "infamous" Swedish president who pulled the EU toward an anti-Israel resolution, nor a "daydreaming judge" in Britain who issued an arrest warrant against an Israeli foreign minister. Criticism of Israel has become the language of choice in European discourse.

When the Israeli government offers new benefits to settlers, and peace talks with the Palestinians are deadlocked, even the superpower's long arm is helpless. Even former U.S. ambassador to Israel Martin Indyk, a devout Jew who serves as an external advisor to U.S. President Barack Obama, does not hide his chagrin with the settlements policy.

Indyk has recently told Haaretz in an interview that statements by figures like Minister without Portfolio Benny Begin, according to which settlement construction will continue despite the moratorium, are damaging to Israel's interests. He said these comments, as well as the decision to pump funds into isolated settlements, strengthen the impression that the declaration of the freeze is not worth the paper it is written on. He warned that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will pay a political price for the move, without gaining the benefits which it was intended to grant Israel in the international arena.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

EU: Jerusalem Should Be Joint Capital

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Today the EU foreign ministers in a prepared statement pressured Israel to accept Jerusalem as the shared capital of a future Palestinian state, and then urged the two sides in the Middle East conflict to return to negotiations as soon as possible. The final EU ministerial statement did not include an earlier Swedish draft resolution which explicitly stated that east Jerusalem, including the Temple Mount, should be the capital of a Palestinian state.

Even though the latter did not make the final statement it is obvious that many prominent leaders within the EU believe that Jerusalem and East Jerusalem should be divided with East Jerusalem being the capital of a future Palestinian state. This future Palestinian state would include the areas of Judea, Samaria and the West Bank. In my mind the only reason it did not make the final statement is because it seems as if the EU is not quite ready yet to stand behind such a declaration, but that day is coming and I fear sooner than many think.

When looking at this from a Biblical perspective it is absolutely amazing to me how close we could be to the fulfilment of prophecy. Here are a few scriptures to help support what I am saying.

Luke 21:20-21
20 "But when you see Jerusalem surrounded by armies, then recognize that her desolation is near.
21 "Then those who are in Judea must flee to the mountains, and those who are in the midst of the city must leave, and those who are in the country must not enter the city;

Zechariah 14:2
2 For I will gather all the nations against Jerusalem to battle, and the city will be captured, the houses plundered, the women ravished and half of the city exiled, but the rest of the people will not be cut off from the city.

Joel 3:2
2. I will gather all the nations And bring them down to the valley of Jehoshaphat.
Then I will enter into judgment with them there On behalf of My people and My inheritance, Israel, Whom they have scattered among the nations; And they have divided up My land.

Revelation 11:1-2
1. Then there was given me a measuring rod like a staff; and someone said, "Get up and measure the temple of God and the altar, and those who worship in it.
2. "Leave out the court which is outside the temple and do not measure it, for it has been given to the nations; and they will tread under foot the holy city for forty-two months.

From the above scriptures it is clear that at the midpoint of the 70Th week of Daniel and at the same time in which the abomination of desolation occurs, Jerusalem will be surrounded by armies, half of the city will captured and then exiled. The city will then be divided and the Holy City (Temple Mount) will be given over to the nations for a period of 42 months, the exact same amount of time that the anti-christ will reign.

The fact that the EU is talking about dividing the city of Jerusalem, including the area of the Temple Mount, this should be a wake up call to all Christians that are looking for the return of Christ. At some point in time this will happen just as the Bible foretold and as we get closer to the midpoint of the seven year agreement (ENP) that I have been following on this site, is Biblical prophecy unfolding right before our eyes?

Stay Tuned



EU: Jerusalem Should Be Joint Capital

European Union foreign ministers urged Israel and the Palestinians on Tuesday to make Jerusalem their shared capital, prompting a swift, angry reaction from Israel.

For their part Tuesday, the Palestinians announced a boycott of products made in Israeli settlements in the West Bank. Palestinian Economics Minister Hassan Abu Libdeh said the government has already confiscated $1 million worth of products, including foods, cosmetics and hardware, and that he hoped to remove all such goods from Palestinian store shelves next year.

In Brussels, EU foreign ministers reiterated that the 27-member bloc would not recognize Israel's annexation of the eastern part of Jerusalem after it occupied it in the 1967 war. The ministers called for Israel to share Jerusalem as a capital with a future Palestinian state.

Although the EU has long opposed the annexation of east Jerusalem, the statement angered Israel and was sure to deepen Israel's sense that the Europeans favor Palestinian positions. President Barack Obama has been trying, so far in vain, to nudge the sides toward renewed peace talks.

''The EU will not recognize any changes to the pre-1967 borders including with regard to Jerusalem, other than those agreed by the parties,'' said the ministerial statement. It was referring to the Mideast war in which Israeli forces captured east Jerusalem from the Jordanian army.

''If there is to be a genuine peace, a way must be found (through negotiations) to resolve the status of Jerusalem as the future capital of two states,'' it said.

The EU ministerial statement dropped an earlier Swedish draft resolution which explicitly stated that east Jerusalem -- the disputed part of the holy city -- should be the capital of a Palestinian state after Israel warned it would damage the bloc's ability to take part in any resumed peace talks as a negotiator.

The Israeli Foreign Ministry reacted immediately. ''We regret that the European Union chose to adopt the text,'' Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor said in a statement. He said the statement ''does not contribute'' to promoting peace and ignores the Palestinians' refusal to resume talks.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas refuses to resume peace talks, which broke down a year ago, unless Israel halts all settlement construction.

The Palestinian prime minister, Salam Fayyad, welcomed Tuesday's EU statement. He said it gives Palestinians ''a better sense of hope and possibility about tomorrow.''

The competing claims to east Jerusalem remain perhaps the most explosive issue in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

East Jerusalem is home to sensitive Jewish, Muslim and Christian holy sites. The most contentious is the disputed hilltop compound known to Jews as the Temple Mount and to Muslims as the Noble Sanctuary. Temple Mount, home to the biblical Jewish Temples, is the holiest site in Judaism. It also is the site of the Al Aqsa Mosque, the third-holiest site in Islam.

Palestinians have complained that Israel is trying to restrict their numbers in the eastern part of the city.

Some EU ministers supported the original Swedish proposal but others said it would risk undermining efforts to restart peace talks. Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt said after the meeting: ''We call on the Israeli government to cease all discriminatory treatment of the Palestinians in east Jerusalem.''

The ministers took ''positive note'' of Israel's recent decision to implement a temporary freeze on building new homes in West Bank settlements -- a decision that angered the Palestinians by excluding east Jerusalem.

But they emphasized that the settlements and a separation barrier Israel has built are on occupied land and that Israel's evictions and the demolition of Palestinian homes in east Jerusalem were illegal under international law.

The resolution said such Israeli actions ''constitute an obstacle to peace and threaten to make a two-state solution impossible.''

The Palestinians have dismissed the Israeli's temporary building freeze as insincere because it excludes east Jerusalem and 3,000 homes already being built in the West Bank. Some 300,000 Israelis live in the West Bank, in addition to 180,000 Jewish Israelis in east Jerusalem.

Meanwhile Tuesday, the Palestinians' economics minister, Abu Libdeh, defended the Western-backed government's decision to remove settlement-built products from Palestinian stores. ''Consuming settlements' products is wrong, nationally, economically, politically, and must stop right away,'' he told a news conference.

Fully implementing the boycott will be a challenge since the Palestinian economy relies heavily on Israeli manufacturers for many basic goods.