187 - A Map of the Apocalypse

Scientists predict the Earth will end 5 billion years from now, when the Sun becomes a red giant. Certain religious people are more alarmist, claiming the Apocalypse is just around the corner.

Scientists predict the Earth will end 5 billion years from now, when the Sun becomes a red giant. Certain religious people are more alarmist, claiming the Apocalypse is just around the corner.


In some versions of Christian eschatology (i.e. the study of end times), the Apocalypse will spare a limited number of worthy believers, while destroying the rest of humanity. Some Christian thinkers have derived a very specific course of events that will lead up to the Apocalypse, mainly from Revelations, the last book of the Bible. The final battle between God and Satan is known as Armageddon, and is usually situated at the Megiddo Valley in Israel.

It should be noted that the interpretations of the end times mentioned in the Bible vary widely, some seeing the struggle described as a merely symbolic and allegorical one, others professing a very literal interpretation (although many variants of that ‘literal’ interpretation exist). This map, published on the website of evangelist Jack Van Impe and no doubt reflecting his beliefs, has some very specific predictions for events, apparently not too far ahead:

Israel – against whom Russia and her allies march during the Tribulation hour. Here “The Battle of Armageddon” takes place in the Valley of Jezreel on the Plain Esdraelon which is at the foot of Mount Megiddo.

Euphrates River – which will be dried up to prepare the way for the kings of the East (Revelations 16:12). Russia has constructed a dam at Tabqa, Syria, and two others in Turkey and Iraq, to stop the flow of water. Invading armies may either march across the Euphrates at given points or march up the dry riverbed after an amphibious landing from the Persian Gulf.

Suez Canal – providing access to/from the Mediterranean and Red Seas and ultimately the Indian Ocean. This is a vital link for naval support.

Yemen – Marxist-governed republic and Russia’s possible final stepping-stone to Israel. Currently, Russian and Cuban troops are stationed in Yemen, training for military action in the Middle East. A fleet of Russian naval vessels (including submarines) is stationed in the Indian Ocean/Arabian Sea.

Karakoram Highway – completed in 1982, this superhighway provided China with an overland route to Pakistan and the Middle East. Ironically, the road follows the ancient trans-Asian invasion route used by Alexander the Great, Gengis Khan and the Mogul emperors.

Dardanelles – the strait joining the Sea of Marmara with the Aegean Sea. A leading Jewish rabbi has stated: “When Russia prepares to cross the Dardanelles, Messiah will come.” (Reported in The Jerusalem Post).

EU (blue) – Member nation of the European Community or “European Union” – the ten-nation confederacy spoken of in Daniel 2:44.

EU (red) – Nation to join the “European Union”. Daniel 7:24 teaches that another leader will rise to power and cast three nations out of the ten-nation conferderacy – replacing them with his own and two others for the final ten-nations alliance. This leader is the world dictator and infamous Antichrist!

(Russian flag) – Nations prophesied to be allied with Russia in her march against Israel according to Ezekiel 38:2,5,6 and Daniel 11:44. Many others will also be involved (Ezekiel 36:6b).

(blue arrow) – Possible land, sea and air invasion routes used by Russia and her allies during the war leading to “The Battle of Armageddon”.

(red area) – Section of the map identifying the area incorporated by the old Roman Empire.

The nations who OPPPOSE Russia include “Sheba and Dedan” (non-aligned Arab nations), and “Tarshish and all the young lions thereof” (Great Britain, the United States, Canada, Australia, and their possessions – Ezekiel 38:13) PLUS the ten-nation confederacy of the Antichrist who himself sits in the temple in Jerusalem at this time (Daniel 12:11; Matthew 24:15 and 2 Thessalonians 2:4).

NOTE: Zechariah 14:2 teaches that at a point just prior to “The Battle of Armageddon”, ALL nations turn against Israel at Jerusalem. “Then shall the Lord go forth and fight against those nations…” (Zechariah 14:3). This is Armageddon!

eumapb1.jpgThis map can be found here, on Mr Van Impe’s website.

LinkedIn meets Tinder in this mindful networking app

Swipe right to make the connections that could change your career.

Getty Images
Sponsored
Swipe right. Match. Meet over coffee or set up a call.

No, we aren't talking about Tinder. Introducing Shapr, a free app that helps people with synergistic professional goals and skill sets easily meet and collaborate.

Keep reading Show less

Kosovo land swap could end conflict - or restart war

Best case: redrawing borders leads to peace, prosperity and EU membership. But there's also a worst case

Image: SRF
Strange Maps
  • The Yugoslav Wars started in 1991, but never really ended
  • Kosovo and Serbia are still enemies, and they're getting worse
  • A proposed land swap could create peace - or reignite the conflict

The death of Old Yugoslavia

Image: public domain

United Yugoslavia on a CIA map from 1990.

Wars are harder to finish than to start. Take for instance the Yugoslav Wars, which raged through most of the 1990s.

The first shot was fired at 2.30 pm on June 27th, 1991, when an officer in the Yugoslav People's Army took aim at Slovenian separatists. When the YPA retreated on July 7th, Slovenia was the first of Yugoslavia's republics to have won its independence.

After the wars

Image: Ijanderson977, CC BY-SA 3.0 / Wikimedia Commons

Map of former Yugoslavia in 2008, when Kosovo declared its independence. The geopolitical situation remains the same today.

The Ten-Day War cost less than 100 casualties. The other wars – in Croatia, Bosnia and Kosovo (1) – lasted much longer and were a lot bloodier. By early 1999, when NATO had forced Serbia to concede defeat in Kosovo, close to 140,000 people had been killed and four million civilians displaced.

So when was the last shot fired? Perhaps it never was: it's debatable whether the Yugoslav Wars are actually over. That's because Kosovo is a special case. Although inhabited by an overwhelming ethnic-Albanian majority, Kosovo is of extreme historical and symbolic significance for Serbians. More importantly, from a legalistic point of view: Kosovo was never a separate republic within Yugoslavia but rather a (nominally) autonomous province within Serbia.

Kosovo divides the world

Image: public domain

In red: states that have recognised the independence of Kosovo (most EU member states – with the notable exceptions of Spain, Greece, Romania and Slovakia; and the U.S., Japan, Turkey and Egypt, among many others). In blue: states that continue to recognise Serbia's sovereignty over Kosovo (most notably Russia and China, but also other major countries such as India, Brazil, Mexico, South Africa and Iran).

The government of Serbia has made its peace and established diplomatic relations with all other former Yugoslav countries, but not with Kosovo. In Serbian eyes, Kosovo's declaration of independence in 2008 was a unilateral and therefore legally invalid change of state borders. Belgrade officially still considers Kosovo a 'renegade province', and it has a lot of international support for that position (2). Not just from its historical protector Russia, but also from other states that face separatist movements (e.g. Spain and India).

Despite their current conflict, Kosovo and Serbia have the same long-term objective: membership of the European Union. Ironically, that wish could lead to Yugoslav reunification some years down the road – within the EU. Slovenia and Croatia have already joined, and all other ex-Yugoslav states would like to follow their example. Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia have already submitted an official application. The EU considers Bosnia and Kosovo 'potential candidates'.

Kosovo is the main stumbling block on Serbia's road to EU membership. Even after the end of hostilities, skirmishes continued between the ethnically Albanian majority and the ethnically Serbian minority within Kosovo, and vice versa in Serbian territories directly adjacent. Tensions are dormant at best. A renewed outbreak of armed conflict is not unthinkable.

Land for peace?

Image: BBC

Mitrovica isn't the only area majority-Serb area in Kosovo, but the others are enclaved and fear being abandoned in a land swap.

In fact, relations between Kosovo and Serbia have deteriorated spectacularly in the past few months. At the end of November, Kosovo was refused membership of Interpol, mainly on the insistence of Serbia. In retaliation, Kosovo imposed a 100% tariff on all imports from Serbia. After which Serbia's prime minister Ana Brnabic refused to exclude her country's "option" to intervene militarily in Kosovo. Upon which Kosovo's government decided to start setting up its own army – despite its prohibition to do so as one of the conditions of its continued NATO-protected independence.

The protracted death of Yugoslavia will be over only when this simmering conflict is finally resolved. The best way to do that, politicians on both sides have suggested, is for the borders reflect the ethnic makeup of the frontier between Kosovo and Serbia.

The biggest and most obvious pieces of the puzzle are the Serbian-majority district of Mitrovica in northern Kosovo, and the Albanian-majority Presevo Valley, in southwestern Serbia. That land swap was suggested previous summer by no less than Hashim Thaci and Aleksandar Vucic, presidents of Kosovo and Serbia respectively. Best-case scenario: that would eliminate the main obstacle to mutual recognition, joint EU membership and future prosperity.

If others can do it...

Image: Ruland Kolen

Belgium and the Netherlands recently adjusted out their common border to conform to the straightened Meuse River.

Sceptics - and more than a few locals - warn that there also is a worst-case scenario: the swap could rekindle animosities and restart the war. A deal along those lines would almost certainly exclude six Serbian-majority municipalities enclaved deep within Kosovo. While Serbian Mitrovica, which borders Serbia proper, is home to some 40,000 inhabitants, those enclaves represent a further 80,000 ethnic Serbs – who fear being totally abandoned in a land swap, and eventually forced out of their homes.

Western powers, which sponsored Kosovo's independence, are divided over the plan. U.S. officials back the idea, as do some within the EU. But the Germans are against – they are concerned about the plan's potential to fire up regional tensions rather than eliminate them.

Borders are the Holy Grail of modern nationhood. Countries consider their borders inviolate and unchanging. Nevertheless, land swaps are not unheard of. Quite recently, Belgium and the Netherlands exchanged territories so their joint border would again match up with the straightened course of the River Meuse (3). But those bits of land were tiny and uninhabited. And as the past has amply shown, borders pack a lot more baggage in the Balkans.

Keep reading Show less

Scientists claim the Bible is written in code that predicts future events

The controversy around the Torah codes gets a new life.

Michael Drosnin
Surprising Science
  • Mathematicians claim to see a predictive pattern in the ancient Torah texts.
  • The code is revealed by a method found with special computer software.
  • Some events described by reading the code took place after the code was written.
Keep reading Show less
Videos
  • Facebook and Google began as companies with supposedly noble purposes.
  • Creating a more connected world and indexing the world's information: what could be better than that?
  • But pressure to return value to shareholders came at the expense of their own users.
Keep reading Show less