Philippine President Threatens to Dump U.S. for China

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U.S. Naval Base, Subic Bay, Philippines

Rodrigo Duterte, President of the Philippines said to Chinese leaders on Thursday that he had separated himself from the United States. Then on Friday, he backtracked and said he wasn’t severing ties with the U.S., but simply pursuing a more independent foreign policy.

On Friday, demonstrators burned a replica of the U.S. flag and called for an end to U.S. military agreements.

For months, Duterte has been hurtling insults against the U.S. and President Obama, who has been critical of Duterte’s presidency. A State Department spokesman said the U.S. will ask for an explanation of Duterte’s recent comments. The Philippines has been a key ally of the U.S. in modern times.

Why this Matters: Duterte has run a vicious campaign to fight the illegal drug system in the Philippines. This caused a backlash from President Obama, who criticized his tactics. In turn, Détente called out Obama (in some very nasty terms). Our relationship with the Philippines goes a long way back, most recently to General Mac Arthur freeing the islands from the Japanese. We have military bases in the Philippines, which have served as a buffer with China. Up until now, we have enjoyed a good relationship.

Pray for a re-stabilized relationship. Continue praying for safety and good leadership for our troops around the world, especially those trying to free Mosul from ISIS. We lost one soldier this past week; Father God, we pray for his family and You will make something good out of this tragedy.

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Trouble in South China Sea

A U.S. navy destroyer sailed near islands claimed by China, and received a warning from Chinese warships nearby. The USS Decatur, a guided-missile destroyer, is on mission to challenge China’s “excessive maritime claims” near the Paracel Islands. This is an area over which China has territorial disputes with its neighbors.

China claims almost the entire South China Sea, and has been building its military in the area. About $5 trillion worth of trade passes through those waters each year. A statement from China’s Foreign Ministry said the U.S. ship did not ask for permission to enter Chinese territorial waters, and had broken both Chinese and international law, deliberately creating tensions.

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Why this Matters: The U.S. presence there is to keep China from illegally taking territory. They have already built up islands–moving sediment from the ocean floor–and stationed military bases there, going against international law.

How to Pray: Our battle is not against flesh and blood! Father, give us the words to pray for our country, our well-being, and above all, that Your will be done. We wrestle to do those things that are pleasing to You, to overcome the enemy in our lives, and to make a difference on the planet in mankind–all for Your honor, and glory, in Jesus’ name, amen!

Eph. 6:13 – Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

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UNESCO Denies History of Temple Mount

The executive board of UNESCO (UN Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization) has ratified a resolution that denounces Jewish and Christian ties to the Temple Mount. This coming Wednesday, the UN’s World Heritage Committee is set to do the same thing. The resolution says that the Temple Mount will now be solely named Al-Aqsa Mosque/Al-Haram Al-Sharif and defined only as a Muslim holy site of worship–in essence saying the Jews have no connection to Jerusalem.

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UNESCO’s director, Irina Bokova, issued a statement rebuking the member states for their vote, saying “To deny, conceal or erase any of the Jewish, Christian or Muslim traditions undermines the integrity” of the Temple Mount.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu responded that even the theater of the absurd has its limits, adding it is not a political issue, but one of historical facts.

 

How to Pray: That the resolution will disintegrate! Father, again, we don’t know where we are in prophesy, but we know You are trustworthy. You hold Jerusalem in the palm of Your hand. May Thy will be done, in Jesus’ name!

Rom. 13:11 – And that, knowing that the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed.

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On the Homefront:

Judge Blocks Application of Obama Bathroom Law

A federal judge in Texas ruled that the injunction blocking Obama’s bathroom law should be applied nationwide. This means that the federal government’s guidelines do not carry any weight. The Obama administration is appealing the ruling.

Praise God! May Obama’s bathroom law end up on the dung heap where it belongs.

A cyberattack on Friday affected the internet access across the world. It was a distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack that knocked out several popular website, including Twitter, Reddit, Spotify, Zillow, and others. These are servers owned by Dyn, an internet performance management company. Service was restored within a few hours.

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