Glenn Beck interviewed me Tuesday afternoon on Iranian President Ahmadinejad’s End Times theology and how it is driving Iranian foreign policy.

Here’s the video.

Here’s the transcript:

GLENN BECK, Fox News Channel: OK. I want to talk to you about something that nobody seems to ever notice when they talk about Iran. When we’re talking about Iran, we’re talking about people, the leaders that are called — they’re called 12ers. They believe in the 12th imam, the Mahdi. This is one spooky dude. Twelvers are so dangerous that the Ayatollah Khomeini banned them and said we got to kill `em all because they’re crazy, the Ayatollah Khomeini said that. Now, everybody has been talking about how Iran launched its most advanced missiles earlier this week, but here is what you should be paying attention to. Iran’s President Ahmadinejad, he says this at the end of all of his major speeches, including last Wednesday at the U.N., he said this.


PRES. MAHMOUD AHMADINEJAD, IRAN (through translator): Praise be to Allah, the Lord of the universe, and peace and blessings upon our masters and prophet Mohammed and his pure household and his noble companions. O, God, hasten the arrival of Imam al-Mahdi and grant him good health and victory, and make us his followers and those who attest to his rightfulness.


BECK: OK, hasten the return of the 12th imam, the Mahdi. That’s not a good idea.

Joel Rosenberg, the producer of  the “Inside The Revolution documentary film based on the best-selling book of the same name. Joel, it’s not a good idea to hasten the return of the promised one, because the promised one only comes after the world is washed in blood, right?

JOEL ROSENBERG, PRODUCER, “INSIDE THE REVOLUTION”: That’s right. As I describe in the documentary film, and in the book, “Inside the Revolution,” this is a serious theological argument made by Shia Muslims — not all of them…

BECK: Yes.

ROSENBERG: . but certainly by Ahmadinejad, that you need to bring chaos, carnage and even genocide into which the Islamic messiah comes and establishes justice and peace.

BECK: So, if I can explain this — and correct me if I’m wrong. If I can explain this — if you’re a Christian and you believe in the end times, you know all the tribulation that’s going to suck beyond belief for a long time and then Jesus comes. It would be like a Christian saying, “Hey, let’s make it suck really hard right now, because then Jesus will come.” Not a good idea, but that’s the Mahdi — oh, I’m sorry — that’s what Ahmadinejad believes: hasten the return. Let’s just make it as bloody as we can. So when he says, “Oh, Israel, you’re going to be vaporized,” he believes that he is going to be fulfilling prophecy and it’s going to be good for the Islamic world if he does that, right?

ROSENBERG: That’s right. In Ahmadinejad’s twisted world, he believes essentially he is the John the Baptist for the coming of the messiah. But you’re right — in this case, to bring the messiah requires launching genocidal wars against the Judeo-Christian world.

BECK: Right.

ROSENBERG: And destroy the Judeo-Christian world, and this is why he is using the word “annihilate,” He’s saying annihilate the United States and Israel.

BECK: OK. The 12ers believe that — and you hear this all the time – – that the United States is the anti-Christ, and the little anti-Christ is Israel. That’s because we believe the anti-Christ is a person. They believe the anti-Christ is a force, right?

ROSENBERG: Many Muslims do.


ROSENBERG: There is some division on that.


BECK: I’m talking about the 12ers, specifically about the 12ers.

ROSENBERG: You know, the great Satan.

BECK: OK. So, the Mahdi, when he comes crawling out of the well, he is supposed to create a global government. He persecutes the Christians and he has them either submit or he cuts their heads off, right?


BECK: OK. That sounds like fun.

ROSENBERG: Yes. In fact, what’s more, the Islamic messiah is supposed to come with Jesus.

BECK: Right.

ROSENBERG: Jesus is the deputy, the lieutenant, and forces people to convert or die.

BECK: Well, yes, he’ll testify to the Mahdi and he’ll say, “Hey, by the way, you guys misunderstood. I’m not the son of God. This is the man right here.” Correct?


BECK: OK. They seem to me to be a lot like end times prophecy, war, rumors of war, signs of natural wonders, et cetera, et cetera. It seems like the same thing that plays out in the Book of Revelations. Are they connected at all, at least in the minds of the 12ers?

ROSENBERG: It’s a mirror image. So, there is a lot of similarities, to be sure, but, of course, the difference is that Jesus said in Matthew Chapter 24, Verse 14, that this good news — that God loves you and will accept you and forgive you and save you — this good news must be preached to the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end shall come. So, followers of Jesus Christ think they’re supposed to bring good news and peace and the messages of salvation through the cross before Jesus comes.

BECK: Right.

ROSENBERG: But the 12ers believe you bring death, destruction and horror, and then the end shall come.

BECK: OK. So, the Ayatollah Khomeini and the revolution of ’79, he said these 12ers are too crazy for even him. What happened, because — is Ahmadinejad the only one? Are there a lot of them? It’s my understanding that the government now is full of these people. Is that true?

ROSENBERG: That’s right. Well, the Ayatollah Khamenei, the current supreme leader, was a disciple of the Ayatollah Khomeini.


ROSENBERG: Apparently, it’s turned out that he has been a secret closet 12er, because he clearly believes the same thing as Ahmadinejad. Why do we know this? There’s been a lot of statements by Khamenei, but the key is, this rigged election.

BECK: Yes.

ROSENBERG: . Khamenei could have gotten rid of Ahmadinejad if he wanted to. He has pulled back on several key issues over the years, but on this issue, end times theology.

BECK: He doesn’t.

ROSENBERG: . he’s given him free rein.


ROSENBERG: And now, a new term.

BECK: All right. So, I want to make this clear. I’m not saying these things are true. What I’m saying is, our government — they only seem to take the violence from these crazy Christians, you know, and people at tea parties, they take that deadly serious. But they don’t think that people like Ahmadinejad believe in this stuff. It’s important, if you’re even going to negotiate — maybe they’re bluffing, maybe they don’t — but it’s important that you understand this, and I don’t think our government, I don’t think Bush understood it, and I don’t think Barack Obama understands it. Agree or disagree?

ROSENBERG: I agree with that, and that’s the problem is that Ahmadinejad in that U.N. speech last week was more explicit about his end- times theology than any other time in the last five years that he has been giving these speeches.

BECK: What did he say? What did he say?

BECK: He actually gave several paragraphs of describing something called entezar. That’s a Shia Islamic eschatology notion of having the patience to wait for the coming of the messiah, and he went on at length on this.

Moreover, on an NBC News interview on Sunday Ann Curry did, it was broadcast on an alternate network, but she actually asked him, Ahmadinejad, about this, and he said that he’s in direct communications with this Islamic messiah. That’s the first time that I have heard in these last five years, him go on the record in this case with an American reporter, though NBC did not actually report the story, but they did broadcast it, but to say that he is in direct communication with this mystical Islamic messiah, that’s why this is important.


ROSENBERG: Islamic eschatology, end times theology is driving Iranian foreign policy, and the White House, members of Congress, certainly the U.N. are not paying attention.


ROSENBERG: . to this urgency that they have to bring about the end of days.

BECK: All right. Joel, thank you very much. We’ll talk again. I have to tell you, when I was over at another network, I remember watching this at the U.N., and hearing that, and hearing the translation just a few years ago, and I went who’s the promised one and why should we hasten him? We did our research, and it’s — it’s frightening if these people believe it. If they don’t, we sure should learn what they do know and what they don’t know and what they believe and what they don’t, because it would change the way we sit down at the table with them. A very dangerous situation in the Middle East.



Events are moving so quickly in the epicenter it can be difficult to keep track of, much less understand the big picture. So here it is in a sentence: An apocalpytic storm is forming over the Middle East.

Consider the data points:

  1. Iran has just been caught secretly building a 2nd uranium enrichment facilityon a military base in the religious capital of Iran, a city known as Qom;
  2. A growing number of Western military analysts say the design of this new facility — and its secrecy, and location — clearly indicates it was being built by Iran for the purpose of creating nuclear weapons;
  3. Iran has thus been caught in its third lie since 2002 with regards to building secret nuclear development facilities in Natanz, Arak, and now Qom;
  4. Ahmadinejad refused four times during his NBC News interview last week to rule out the building of nuclear weapons;
  5. A.Q. Khan — the father of Pakistan’s nuclear weapons development program — has just admitted selling advanced nuclear weapons blueprints years ago to Iran for millions of dollars;
  6. The latest IAEA report indicates Iran has enough low-enriched uranium (LEU) to produce enough high-enriched uranium (HEU) by 2010 to produce two nuclear weapons;
  7. Iran has just spent the weekend testing “its most advanced missiles” capable of reaching Israel;
  8. Iranian leader Mahmoud Ahmadinejad began  his speech to the U.N. by praying for Allah to hasten the coming of the Islamic Messiah, which according to his theology requires the destruction of Judeo-Christian civilization as we know it.
  9. Ahmadinejad spoke more openly about his End of the World theology during his U.N. speech than ever before;
  10. Ahmadinejad was asked for the first time by an American reporter to describe his relationship with the “Twelfth Imam” and admitted on camera that he is communicating with this mystical Shia messiah;

Humanly speaking, war is coming. The West does not seem determined enough to stop Iran from getting the Bomb. So unless the Lord intervenes, Israel might soon feel compelled to launch a preemptive strike against Iran. It won’t be easy, and the entire region could go up in flames.

The stakes couldn’t be higher. So on this day of Yom Kippur, let us commit ourselves to prayer and fasting for the peace of Jerusalem and the physical and spiritual salvation of all of Israel and all of Iran.

Note: On Wednesday, I will be delivering an address on this gathering storm and its implications for the U.S., Israel and our allies before 10,000 students, faculty and staff at Liberty University.

* LEARN: The Inside The Revolution film on DVD is available for 35% off at Barnes & Noble

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* GIVE: Would you like to help The Joshua Fund bless Israel and her neighbors with food, clothing, medical supplies and other relief aid, especially as we pray for peace and prepare for the growing possibility of a war with Iran? A gift of $50, $100, $250 or more would make an enormous difference, as would becoming a monthly financial partner. Learn more at



NBC becomes first U.S. media outlet to ask Ahmadinejad about his belief in the 12th Imam

NBC becomes first U.S. media outlet to ask Ahmadinejad about his belief in the 12th Imam

>> Please be praying for all Jews and Israelis as they fast and seek the Lord today for Yom Kippur

>> MEDIA ALERT: Joel will be on “Point of View” on the USA Radio Network live from 2:30pm to 3pm eastern to discuss Iran.

>> MEDIA ALERT: Joel will be on Janet Parshall’s America from 3:30pm to 4pm eastern to discuss Iran.


Since September 2006, I have been urging Western journalists to ask Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on the record about his beliefs in the “Twelfth Imam” and about the implications of his annual prayer at the U.N. asking for Allah to “hasten” the arrival of the Islamic messiah, also known as the “Mahdi.” [First in an article on National Review Online on September 20, 2006; later in my non-fiction book, Inside The Revolution; and repeatedly in media interviews.]

For years, no American or British journalist has asked such questions, despite the importance Ahmadinejad’s eschatology plays in Iranian foreign policy. This year, with a nuclear showdown intensifying, journalists from Time, Newsweek, AP, CNN and NPR all were given lengthy sit-down interviews with the Iranian leader. But for yet another year, none of them asked questions about his religious beliefs.

However, after scouring the transcripts of all these and many other Western news reports over the past few days, I found a surprise at the end of the full transcript of NBC’s Ann Curry  exclusive sit-down interview in Tehran last week. She actually did ask two important questions about the 12th Imam, becoming the first American reporter to do so. However, NBC has thus far failed to report the story. Neither NBC Nightly News nor the Today Show included Curry’s questions or Ahmadinejad’s answers in their respective reports on Thursday night and Friday morning. Nor have NBC publicists highlighted the eschatology questions and answers for other reporters or the public.

Did NBC’s producers and editors not find the exchange interesting? Why haven’t they asked experts to analyze Ahmadinejad’s answers, and to explore his religious beliefs more in-depth? I commend Ann Curry for the asking these questions. What’s more I encourage her to follow the story. It’s an intriguing one — and an important one — and she’s ahead of the pack on this.

MSNBC plans to air the entire interview on Sunday afternoon at 1pm eastern. I would encourage you to watch. Let’s hope that the program provides additional information and analysis above and beyond the straight interview.

Tomorrow, I’ll post my own analysis, but for now here is the exchange.

[To read the NBC transcript, please click here. To watch the video, please click here. The key portion starts at 36:40 minutes into the video and ends at 40:30.]

NBC’s Ann Curry: In your speeches, you pray for God to hasten the arrival of the hidden Imam, the Muslim messiah. Would you tell us, as I know you will speak about this at the general assembly, as well.  What is your relationship with the hidden Imam, and how soon do you think before the second coming?

President Ahmadinejad: Yes, that’s true.  I prayed for the arrival of the 12th Imam. The owner of the age, as we call him.  Because the owner of the age is the symbol of the – justice and brotherly love prevailing around the world.  When the Imam arrives, all of these problems will be resolved.  And a prayer for the owner of the age is nothing but a wish for justice and brotherly love to prevail around the world. And it’s an obligation a person takes upon himself to always think about brotherly love. And also to treating others as equals. All people can establish such a connection with the Imam of the age. It’s roughly the same as the relationship which exists between Christians and the Christ.  They speak with Jesus Christ and they are sure that Christ hears them.  And responds.  Therefore, this is not limited to us only.  Any person can talk with the Imam.

Curry: You’ve said that you believe that his arrival, the apocalypse, would happen in your own lifetime. What do you believe that you should do to hasten his arrival?

Ahmadinejad: I have never said such a thing.

Curry: Ah, forgive me.

Ahmadinejad: I – I – I was talking about peace.

Curry: Forgive me.

Ahmadinejad: What is being said about an apocalyptic war and – global war, things of that nature.  This is what the Zionists are claiming.  Imam…will come with logic, with culture, with science.  He will come so that there is no more war. No more enmity, hatred.  No more conflict.  He will call on everyone to enter a brotherly love. Of course, he will return with Jesus Christ.  The two will come back together.  And working together, they would fill this world with love.  The stories that have been disseminated around the world about extensive war, apocalyptic wars, so on and so forth, these are false.

Also noteworthy from Curry’s interview is that four times she asks Ahmadinejad to rule out any scenario by which Iran would develop nuclear weapons, and four times he pointedly refuses.


* LEARN: The Inside The Revolution film on DVD is available for 35% off at Barnes & Noble

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* GIVE: Would you like to help The Joshua Fund bless Israel and her neighbors with food, clothing, medical supplies and other relief aid, especially as we pray for peace and prepare for the growing possibility of a war with Iran? A gift of $50, $100, $250 or more would make an enormous difference, as would becoming a monthly financial partner. Learn more at

“ISLAM ON CAPITOL HILL” EVENT ATTRACTS FAR LESS THAN EXPECTED: Evangelical Christians use opportunity to share gospel with thousands of Muslims

Less than 3,000 Muslims showed up, not 50,000.

Less than 3,000 Muslims showed up, not 50,000.

>> ‘Ahmadinejad has enough uranium to go whole way’: Senior US official says secret facility is right size to make ‘bomb or two a year’


Islamic leaders predicted 50,000 Muslims would arrive on Capitol Hill today to provide a show of Islamic solidarity. It didn’t quite turn out that way.

Less than 3,000 Muslims showed up, according to the Washington Post and other eyewitnesses. And those who did got more than they had bargained for. The followers of Muhammad came for a day of prayer and Islamic sermons, which they got. But they also found dozens of followers of Jesus Christ — some of them evangelicals from from Arab countries — eager to share the gospel with them and pray for them to find the love and forgiveness found in the Bible.

“Our church prepared 2,000 packets to be given out to Muslims at the end of the event,” an evangelical Christian woman who lives in the Washington, D.C. area told me in a phone interview. Each packet contained a copy of the Gospel of John and the Book of Romans in Arabic; a DVD of the JESUS film in 16 languages spoken in Muslim-majority countries; and a DVD called “More Than Dreams.” The last DVD tells testimonies of numerous Muslims in North Africa, the Middle East and Asia who have left Islam and become followers of Jesus Christ after seeing dreams and visions of Jesus Himself.

“I personally handed out at least 100 packets,” the woman told me, “and there were about 25 others in our group  doing the same.”

Were Muslims receptive to taking the gospel materials? I asked.

“They were,” she said. “If you said, ‘Salaam’ [peace in Arabic] and were polite and loving, they would take the packets. One Muslim woman told me, ‘I am very sincere. I will definitely take this home and look at these things.'”

“Honestly, the thing I was really grieved about,” the believer told me, “was the protesters who were there who claimed to be Christians but didn’t seem to have any love for these Muslims.”

Some held signs that had political rather than gospel messages — messages like, “Jail to the Chief.” Others used a bull horn to tell the Muslims they were going to Hell.

“I started crying when I saw that,” the woman believer explained. “I thought, You’ve got to be kidding me. You’re not helping. How are political messages or yelling at people about Hell going to convince Muslims that they’re sinners — like all we all are — and that they need to accept the forgiveness that only Christ can offer?

She said, “I had a conversation with a guy who was wearing a t-shirt that said, ‘Intolerance’ on one side and ‘Abortion is murder, homosexuality is a sin, Islam is a lie’ on the other.’ I asked him, ‘Are you with that group over there with the bull horn?’ He said, ‘I know one of them, yes.'”

She asked the man if he agreed that telling people they’re going to Hell was the best way to communicate God’s love and forgiveness for all people, including Muslims. He insisted that “people need to hear the Law” and added, “The Word of God won’t return void. It doesn’t matter how it’s said. It just needs to be said.”

The woman disagreed. “It does matter how we tell people about Jesus,” then added, “I’m just really concerned about the message you guys are communicating. Aren’t we supposed to love them? Aren’t we supposed to share the truth in love? Would you die to bring these people the gospel? Do you want them to be saved, or just to tell them that they’re following a lie?”

Die for them?” the protester asked, somewhat bewildered, thinking about the concept for few moments. “I just don’t think I could. I have a wife and five kids.”

“Yes,” the woman replied, “but it’s our job to share the gospel with them, isn’t it? We don’t need to be afraid of them, or angry with them about what they might be doing to our country.”

Later, she told me that,  “[The Apostle] Paul didn’t say, ‘Nero needs to go to jail.’ He didn’t talk about Nero. He simply shared the gospel because he knew that’s how hearts are really changed, by the love of Jesus.”

What an intriguing and thought-provoking case study in dealing with Islam in our country.


Satellite image of new uranium enrichment facility being built near the city of Qom, Iran. (AP photo)

Satellite image of new uranium enrichment facility being built near the city of Qom, Iran. (AP photo)

>> Ahmadinejad on Friday “dodged a question about whether Iran had sufficient enriched uranium to manufacture a nuclear weapon” and “says President Barack Obama will regret” his statement calling for Iran to comply with international law “or be held accountable”

Excerpts from the Washington Post story: “President Obama and the leaders of France and Britain on Friday blasted Iran’s construction of a previously unknown uranium enrichment facility and demanded that Tehran immediately fulfill its obligations under international law or risk the imposition of harsh new sanctions. ‘Iran is breaking rules that all nations must follow,’ Obama said, detailing how the facility at Qom had been under construction for years without being disclosed, as required, to the International Atomic Energy Association. ‘International law is not an empty promise.’ British Prime Minister Gordon Brown accused Iran of ‘serial deception’ that he said ‘will shock and anger the whole international community, and it will harden our resolve….We will not let this matter rest,’ Brown said. ‘. . . Iran must abandon any military ambitions for its nuclear programs.’ Iran acknowledged the existence of the facility for the first time on Monday, in a letter to the Vienna-based International Atomic Energy Agency. The letter said ‘a new pilot fuel enrichment plant is under construction in the country,’ said Marc Vidricaire, a spokesman for the watchdog agency. ‘The letter stated that the enrichment level would be up to 5 percent.'”

Excerpts from the New York Times story: “American officials said that they expected the announcement to make it easier to build a case for international sanctions if Iran blocked inspectors or refused to halt its nuclear program. ‘They have cheated three times,’ one senior administration official with access to the intelligence said of the Iranians late on Thursday evening. ‘And they have now been caught three times.’ The official was referring to the revelations by an Iranian dissident group that led to the discovery of the underground plant at Natanz in 2002, and the evidence developed two years ago — after Iran’s computer networks were pierced by American intelligence agencies — that the country had secretly sought to design a nuclear warhead. American officials believe that effort was ordered halted in late 2003. After months of talking about the need for engagement, Mr. Obama appears to have made a leap toward viewing tough new sanctions against Iran as an inevitability. He avoided President Ahmadinejad at the opening of the United Nations General Assembly this week, despite promises made during the presidential campaign and after he came into office that he would seek dialogue with Iranian leaders. Instead, Mr. Obama spent much of his time in New York pressing the case to leaders, particularly those of Russia and China, that time had run out for Iran and that the Security Council would soon need to act to rein in Tehran’s nuclear ambitions.”


Benjamin Netanyahu, prime minister of Israel, holds up Nazi documents during his speech at the 64th session of the General Assembly at United Nations headquarters, Thursday, Sept. 24, 2009. (AP Photo)

Benjamin Netanyahu, prime minister of Israel, holds up Nazi documents during his speech at the 64th session of the General Assembly at United Nations headquarters, Thursday, Sept. 24, 2009. (AP Photo)

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Over the years, I’ve heard Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu deliver a lot of speeches. But none so powerful as this.

It reminded me of President Bush’s speech to the U.N. in September 2002 when he challenged the world community to effectively hold Saddam Hussein accountable for dozens of violations of international law or risk irrelevance.

Today, Netanyahu challenged the world to stop Iran from acquiring weapons of genocide, or risk losing all moral legitimacy.

President Bush’s speech led to a war with Iraq. I suspect Prime Minister Netanyahu knows full well a war is likely coming with Iran. I pray that a peaceful solution can be found. But if Israel must go it alone — without the world’s help — Netanyahu wants to be on record for having clearly explained the issues and stakes.

Full transcript of the speech.

In the meantime, some highlights:

  • The Prime Minister laid down the gauntlet with Iran, and the world.
  • He commended the nations whose leaders and diplomats either boycotted or walked out of Ahmadinejad’s speech yesterday for their “moral clarity.”
  • He also shamed those who stayed and those U.N. leaders who gave the Iranian leader — who calls the Holocaust “a lie” while publicly threatening to annihilate the Jewish people in the not-too-distant future — a platform to spew his vile beliefs.
  • “To those who gave this Holocaust denier a hearing, I say on behalf of my people, Have you no shame? Have you no decency?”
  • Must-see video clip of Netanyahu’s speech.
  • He showed the world original Nazi documents explaining the Holocaust that were given him by the German government and repeatedly asked world leaders, “Are these a lie?”
  • He noted that President Obama recently visited a Nazi death camp in Europe and asked whether Obama gave validation to “a lie.”
  • Netanyahu urged the world to stop Iran now from getting the Bomb, and warned the failure to do so could lead to incalculable suffering and damage.
  • He challenged the U.N. for its anti-Semitic and anti-Israel “Goldstone Commission” report. The report charges the Jewish state with war crimes for defending her people from eight years of 10,000-plus rockets and missiles raining down from Gaza. What’s more, he challenged the U.N. to reject the commission’s report and thus side with Israel, or accept the report and side with and reward the Hamas terrorists in Gaza. He asked how Israel could possibly take more “risks for peace” if the world condemned Israel for defending herself from terror attacks launched from the last swath of land offered to the Palestinians in the name of peace.

Here are the first press reports coming in from Israeli papers:

* Haaretz: Netanyahu slams UN, challenges it to confront Iran

* Jerusalem Post: Netanyahu scolds UNGA for turning blind eye to terror

* Ynet News: PM to UN: Iran fueled by fundamentalism — During General Assembly address, Netanyahu slams Ahmadinejad’s Holocaust denial; ‘Is this a lie?’ he says while brandishing Auschwitz death camp plans. PM also criticizes UN for failing to condemn Hamas fire on Israel

* LEARN: The Inside The Revolution film on DVD is available for 35% off at Barnes & Noble

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How is it that the leader of France is tougher than the American President?

How is it that the leader of France is tougher than the American President?

French President Nicolas Sarkozy stepped up this morning and showed more leadership that President Obama.

Moments after the U.N. Security Council — chaired by Obama — passed a resolution aimed at creating a global nuclear disarmament and reducing the “risk of nuclear terrorism,” the French leader said the emperor had no clothes.

“Talk of nuclear-free future is nice,” noted Sarkozy, “but we are facing two immediate nuclear crises.”

“Iran is violating the Security Council’s resolutions right before our eyes,” Sarkozy added. “The international community has urged Iran to agree to talks (on its nuclear program) since 2005, but since then there has only been more uranium enrichment, more centrifuges and a declaration by Iran’s leader (President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad) to a UN member state [Israel] off the map.”

Sarkozy called for “immediate action” against Iran, arguing, “If we have the courage to affirm and impose sanctions together against those who violate resolutions of the Security Council, we will be lending credibility to our commitment towards a world with fewer nuclear weapons.”

How is it that the leader of France is tougher than the American President?


Many U.N. diplomats left the General Assembly hall as President Ahmadinejad began his address. (photo credit: New York Times)

Many U.N. diplomats left the General Assembly hall as President Ahmadinejad began his address. (photo credit: New York Times)

BREAKING:  Radical Muslim man in Denver indicted for conspiring to detonate weapons of mass destruction inside the U.S.

Impressions of President Ahmadinejad’s speech [CORRECTED on 9/26/09.]:

  • His tone was low-key, quiet, deceitfully tame — it was clear he didn’t want to make splashy, provocative headlines this time around.
  • The speech was aimed at temporarily mollifying critics (or at least not giving them fresh ammunition against him), and buying time so the West doesn’t act decisively and Iran can finish building nuclear weapons without interference.
  • It was dangerous precisely because this strategy is likely to work.
  • Ahmadinejad repeatedly denounced Israel and the Jewish people as evil, “inhuman,” and conspirators dominating the world, as was expected.
  • Yet in his 35-minute remarks he seemed to be making a calculated effort to appear somewhat reasonable (at least in contrast to Libyan leader Qaddafi and his 96 minute rant, which began with him being introduced as “the King of kings”) — he didn’t deny the Holocaust, he didn’t call for the annihilation of the U.S. and Israel or say that both countries were doomed and “nearing the end of the road” as he did in 2008.
  • Noteworthy was that Ahmadinejad once again began his address by praying, “Oh, God, hasten the arrival of Imam Al-Mahdi and grant him good health and victory and make us his followers and those who attest to his rightfulness.”
  • To read the official transcript of Ahmadinejad’s address, please click here
  • To watch the video of Ahmadinejad’s address, please click here
  • He began his address in 2006, 2007 and 2008 with this prayer as well, asking Allah asking him to hasten the coming of the Islamic Messiah, known as the “Twelfth Imam,” or the “Mahdi,” or the “just and promised One”
  • In his first address to the U.N. General Assembly in 2005, Ahmadinejad ended his speech with such a prayer.
  • That said, Ahmadinejad’s address in 2009 contained more references to the coming of the Mahdi than any of the others.
  • He referred at least twice to a Shia Islamic eschatological notion of “entezar.” This is the capacity for a Shia Muslim to wait patiently for the coming of the Islamic Messiah.
  • EXAMPLE #1: “Piety, having faith in Allah and His judgment of human behaviour or conduct in the next world, belief in the primacy of justice in everyone’s lives, seeking one’s happiness, well being and security in the happiness, well-being and security of others, respecting humanity, making efforts to expand love and compassion against hostility, were all primary in the teachings offered by the Messengers of God, from Adam to Noah, from Noah to Abraham, Moses, Jesus Christ and finally Prophet Muhammad (pbuh). All of them came to do something to eliminate war and ignorance, to eradicate poverty and uproot discrimination in order to spread happiness in the entire world. They are the best gifts that God Almighty has granted to human beings. If the belief in Entezar, that is to say, waiting patiently for justice to return, turns into a common one, and we join hands to achieve prosperity for all, then there will be more real and increasing hopes for reform.
  • EXAMPLE #2: “There will come a time when justice will prevail across the globe and every single human being will enjoy respect and dignity. That will be the time when mankind’s path to moral and spiritual perfection will be opened and his journey to God and the manifestation of God’s Divine Names will come true. Mankind should excel to represent God’s knowledge and wisdom, His compassion and benevolence, His justice and fairness, His power and art, and His kindness and forgiveness. These will all come true under the rule of the Perfect Man, the last Divine source on earth, Hazrat Mahdi (pbuh), an offspring of the Prophet of Islam, who will re-engage, and Jesus Christ (pbuh) and other noble men will accompany him in the accomplishment of this grand universal mission. And this is the belief in Entezar: waiting patiently for the Imam to return, waiting with patience for the rule of goodness and the governance of the best, which is a universal human notion and which is a source of nations’ hope for the betterment of the world. They will come, and with the help of righteous people and true believers will materialize man’s long-standing desire for freedom, perfection, maturity, security and tranquillity, peace and beauty. They will come to put an end to war and aggression and bring complete knowledge as well as spirituality and friendship to the whole world. Yes, indeed, this bright future for mankind will come. Dear friends, in waiting for that brilliant time to come and in a collective commitment, let’s make our due contributions to paving the way and preparing the conditions for building that bright future.”
  • Ahmadinejad tried to make the claim that Iran’s elections last summer were been free, fair and “glorious.”
  • He said: “Our nation has successfully gone through a glorious and fully democratic election, opening a new chapter for our country in the march towards national progress and enhanced international interactions. They entrusted me once more, by a large majority, with this heavy responsibility.”
  • He then called the Islamic Republic of Iran “one of the most democratic and progressive governments of the world.”
  • These are lies so outrageous they would be laughable if so many thousands of Iranians hadn’t been arrested, tortured and killed for trying to practice true democracy.
  • One shrewd proposal Ahmadinejad made: he indicated in his speech and in an interview with the Washington Post and Newsweek that Iran wants to buy from the West nuclear materials for medical purposes. “These nuclear materials we are seeking to purchase are for medicinal purposes. . . . It is a humanitarian issue,” Ahmadinejad told the Post. “I think this is a very solid proposal which gives a good opportunity for a start” to build trust between the two countries and “engage in cooperation.” The Post notes that “nuclear research reactors are used to create radioactive isotopes for the diagnosis and treatment of diseases. The Iranian president said that about 20 medical products are created at a reactor in Tehran but that more fuel is needed.”
  • “Iran’s medical reactor was supplied by the United States during the shah’s rule,” reports the Post. “But according to David Albright, a former weapons inspector who is president of the Institute for Science and International Security in Washington, Iran received additional uranium only from Argentina after the 1979 revolution. Argentina cut off those supplies sometime in the 1980s. Albright said Iran’s latest move is ‘clever’ because there is ‘implied blackmail’ behind the idea. If the material is not supplied, Iran could announce that it has no choice but to make the material, which is nearly 20 percent enriched; the material Iran is now producing is 3 to 5 percent enriched and suitable only for energy purposes. Allowing Iran to purchase the new material would require a waiver of international sanctions. While weapons-grade material is more than 90 percent enriched, making material for the medical reactor could put Iran on the next step to reaching that level.”
  • Full Washington Post interview with Ahmadinejad.
  • Ahmadinejad speech reflected the fact that he knows he’s walking a fine line. He desperately wants to stay true to his End Times theology and prepare the world for the coming of the Mahdi, but he also needs to keep the world community from unifying to stop Iran’s nuclear weapons program.
  • “Delegations from Argentina, Australia, Britain, Costa Rica, Denmark, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, New Zealand and the United States left the room as Ahmadinejad began to rail against Israel, a European source said.”
  • The Canadians — God bless  them — were the first to leave.
  • Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, who was not in New York for the U.N. meetings told reporters: “It is unfitting that somebody like that would be giving those kinds of remarks before the United Nations General Assembly. . . .There are times when things are being said in this world that it is important that countries that have a moral compass stand up, make their views known and our absence there will speak volumes about how Canada feels about the declarations of President Ahmadinejad….President Ahmadinejad has said things, particularly about the state of Israel, the Jewish people and the Holocaust, that are absolutely repugnant…
  • That said, I suspect Ahmadinejad’s attempt to appear “reasonable” enough to most U.N. leaders to avoid draconian economic sanctions just may work.
  • Though I pray I’m wrong, I don’t expect the West to take the decisive action necessary to stop Iran from getting the Bomb.
  • That means that, humanly speaking, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu may be the only world leader who understands the depth and magnitude of this threat and may be willing to do something to save not just his country but the world from the apocalyptic, genocidal death cult that currently runs Iran.
  • Please pray for wisdom for world leaders as they meet at the U.N. this week. Please pray for the Lord to change Ahmadinejad’s heart, and that of the Ayatollah Khamenei. Please also pray for wisdom and guidance for Prime Minister Netanyahu as he addresses the U.N. today and as he seeks to build support for action against Iran.
  • Time is running short.

* LEARN: The Inside The Revolution film on DVD is available for 35% off at Barnes & Noble

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Did President Obama pass the test?

Did President Obama pass the test?

ORIGINAL POST: Today is a major test for President Obama as he addresses the U.N. General Assembly this morning.

  1. IRAN — Will he lay down the law with Iran? Will he mobilize the world to do everything in its power to bring the illegitimate and tyrannical regime in Tehran to its knees to stop the nuclear weapons program? Or will he be the 21st century Neville Chamberlain, and allow the world to lurch towards another Holocaust? I admit, I’m not that hopeful. But I do believe in the audacity of hope. Perhaps the President will rise to the challenge. That’s what I’m praying for.
  2. AFGHANISTAN — Iran is the top challenge facing the President, but not the only. He is getting weak in the knees on his resolve to win in Afghanistan. Our top general there says he needs more troops — fast — or we’re going to lose. Yet Obama won’t commit to giving our commanders on the ground everything they need. Remarkably, even an editorial in the Washington Post this morning challenges Obama for being weak and wobbly. We cannot lose in Afghanistan. If we do, we could destabilize Pakistan, a nuclear armed country. This could trigger a war with India and the Paks. The stakes are high. Let’s pray for the President to do the right thing.
  3. ISRAEL — Anti-Semitic and anti-Israel sentiment is metastasizing in the U.N. Will the President stand with our most faithful ally in the epicenter, or effectively cut her loose? Let’s be praying for good news.

God bless Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper for directing his delegation to walk out on Ahmadinejad.

MY INITIAL REACTION (updated analysis):

President Obama’s first address to the United Nations General Assembly was not just a disappointment, it was dangerous. Weak on Iran. Hard on Israel. Virtually silent on Afghanistan. The President effectively called for Israel’s capital city of Jerusalem to be divided, for Israel itself to be divided, and proposed no enforcement mechanism to stop Iran from getting the Bomb. This will only encourage the Radicals from Gaza City to Tehran.


  • ON IRAN AND THE NUCLEAR THREAT — I was glad to hear President Obama say: “If the governments of Iran and North Korea choose to ignore international standards; if they put the pursuit of nuclear weapons ahead of regional stability and the security and opportunity of their own people; if they are oblivious to the dangers of escalating nuclear arms races in both East Asia and the Middle East — then they must be held accountable. The world must stand together to demonstrate that international law is not an empty promise, and that treaties will be enforced. We must insist that the future does not belong to fear.”
  • Also glad that he said: “We must stop the spread of nuclear weapons….For decades, we averted disaster, even under the shadow of a superpower stand-off. But today, the threat of proliferation is growing in scope and complexity. If we fail to act, we will invite nuclear arms races in every region, and the prospect of wars and acts of terror on a scale that we can hardly imagine….The next 12 months could be pivotal in determining whether this compact will be strengthened or will slowly dissolve.”
  • I was glad to hear him say: “We must never allow a single nuclear device to fall into the hands of a violent extremist.”
  • But I was disappointed that the President drew no line in the sand with regards to Iran (much less North Korea), put no decisive enforcement mechanism on the table, threatened no consequences. Right now, the President is just talk. But the clock is ticking. Iran’s nuclear enrichment centrifuges are spinning. Iran’s ballistic missile factories are creating longer-range and more accurate delivery vehicles. If Washington and the world does not take decisive action to stop Iran this fall, we may very well leave the Israelis with no alternative but to strike. Is that what the world wants…Israel acting on its own when then is really a global problem?
  • ON AFGHANISTANI was, frankly, stunned and disappointed that while the President mentioned the word “Afghanistan,” he barely talked about one of the most urgent military issues of our day. Will he accept his own commanders recommendations and put tens of thousands of more American troops into Afghanistan to defeat al Qaeda and the Taliban and secure the peace? Or will he cut and run? How could he not even broach the topic today?
  • ON STANDING WITH ISRAEL I was glad to hear the President say his goal is, in part, is “a Jewish state of Israel, with true security for all Israelis.” It’s important that the President affirms the essential Jewish character of the State of Israel. Palestinian leader Abbas, after all, won’t  say he supports a “Jewish state” living next to a Palestinian one, which is telling indeed.
  • But I was disappointed to hear Obama say: “America does not accept the legitimacy of continued Israeli settlements” and disappointed to hear him say he supports “a viable, independent Palestinian state with contiguous territory that ends the occupation that began in 1967.”
  • First, in its full historic context, the President is  telling the Israelis they have to divide their eternal capital of Jerusalem (which was a divided city before ’67) and divide the actual territory of Israel by allowing the Palestinians to have “contiguous territory” — that is a land bridge between the West Bank and Gaza. This from a President who wouldn’t speak out on behalf of the pro-democracy Reformers in Iran this summer because he didn’t want to “meddle” in the internal affairs of another country? Mr. President, what you are proposing in morally wrong and strategically dangerous. Jerusalem should never be divided again. What’s more, the sovereign territory of Israel should never be divided at all. Certainly not because an American President insists on such things. And by insisting on them, the President is actually emboldening the Radical hardliners who will now argue that until the President forces Israel to make such sweeping concessions the jihadists should force such concessions.
  • Second, why are the so-called “settlements” in Jerusalem and the West Bank illegitimate? In 1947, the U.N. Partition Plan offered half the holy land to the Jews, and half to the Arabs. The Jews said yes and created Israel. The Arabs said no and launched 62 years of war and terrorism. The Israelis have repeatedly offered the Palestinians “land for peace” deals, but the Palestinian leadership keeps saying “no.” So Israelis are building homes, schools, medical clinics and other communities on disputed territory that the Palestinians refuse to accept in return for real peace. Why is that wrong? Come with me to Israel. I’ll take you to the West Bank. These Jewish communities are being built on land where Palestinian Arabs aren’t even living. It’s vacant land. Again I ask, why is it illegitimate for Israelis to build on land that has repeatedly been offered to the Palestinians, but the Palestinians refuse to take? Moreover, the so-called West Bank was known in ancient times as “Judea and Samaria.” This is the biblical heartland of Israel. I support autonomy for the Palestinian people living in their own towns and villages. But I also support the right of Israeli Jews to build on the territory the Lord gave them as their “eternal possession.”



>> Netanyahu’s intriguing interview on NBC’s “Today” Show this morning — calls for “crippling” international economic sanctions on a “weak” Iran, and asks whether Palestinian leader Abbas is “an Arafat, or a Sadat?”


>> Netanyahu ‘very satisfied’ with Obama’s UNGA speech

>> Lieberman to Haaretz: Israel pleased by Obama mention of ‘Jewish state’

>> John Bolton to National Review: ‘A Post-American Speech By Our First Post-American President’


* LEARN: The Inside The Revolution film on DVD is available for 35% off at Barnes & Noble

* LEARN: Sign up for Joel’s email alerts with geopolitical analysis on trends in Israel and the Middle East, Joshua Fund project updates and prayer requests

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* GIVE: Would you like to help The Joshua Fund bless Israel and her neighbors with food, clothing, medical supplies and other relief aid, especially as we pray for peace and prepare for the growing possibility of a war with Iran? A gift of $50, $100, $250 or more would make an enormous difference, as would becoming a monthly financial partner. Learn more at

ROSENBERG & “BILLY GRAHAM OF IRAN” LAUNCH RADIO TOUR: Will analyze Ahmadinejad visit to U.S. and the Christian revolution in Iran

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad arrives in New York City this week for meetings and speeches at the United Nations. Also heading for Manhattan is Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, President Obama, and other epicenter leaders.

For the next few days, I will be doing a series of media interviews analyzing Ahmadinejad’s geopolitical goals for the trip, the seriousness of Iran’s nuclear threat, and the growing prospects of war with Israel. Joining me for many of the interviews will be Hormoz Shariat, the leading Iranian satellite television evangelist whom I described in the Inside The Revolution documentary film as “the Billy Graham of Iran.” He will be discussing the “big, untold story” in Iran — how millions of Shia Muslims are abandoning Islam and how many are becoming followers of Jesus Christ. Shariat was a guest with me during the “National Town Hall Meeting on the Threat of Radical Islam and the Church’s Response” on September 11th.

I’ll update the media schedule day by day. Here’s the line-up for Tuesday. All times are eastern and are subject to change.

Tuesday, September 22

  • 9:00-9:30am (ET) – WTHU – Maryland LIVE
  • 9:35-9:45am (ET) – KDWN – Las Vegas LIVE
  • 10:00-10:15am (ET) – Reach FM – Florida (w/Hormoz Shariat) TAPED
  • 11:00-11:30am (ET) – WWIB – Wisconsin (w/Hormoz) LIVE
  • 12:30-12:45pm (ET) – KBSJ – Tyler, TX (w/Hormoz) TAPED
  • 3:20-3:30pm (ET) – KNKT – Albuquerque (w/ Hormoz) LIVE (“ABQ Connect” Host:  Peter Benson)
  • 5:00-6:00pm – KKMS – Minneapolis/St. Paul LIVE

Wednesday, Sept. 23

  • 4:00-5:00pm — Oasis Radio Network (taped)
  • 5:05-5:30pm — WTBN—Tampa, FL LIVE
  • 5:30-5:50pm — KJSL-St. Louis LIVE
  • 6:30-7:00pm — KPAM-Portland
  • 8:00-8:30pm — KKLA-Los Angeles LIVE, (w/Hormoz) “Frank Pastore Show”


LEARN: The Inside The Revolution film on DVD is available for 35% off at Barnes & Noble

* LEARN: Sign up for Joel’s email alerts with geopolitical analysis on trends in Israel and the Middle East, Joshua Fund project updates and prayer requests

* PRAY: Join Joel’s “Epicenter Team” on Facebook

* GIVE: Would you like to help The Joshua Fund bless Israel and her neighbors with food, clothing, medical supplies and other relief aid, especially as we pray for peace and prepare for the growing possibility of a war with Iran? A gift of $50, $100, $250 or more would make an enormous difference, as would becoming a monthly financial partner. Learn more at