| Dead Heat |
By Joel Rosenberg
GLENN: How about Barack Obama saying that he wants to meet with the leaders of Iran? What do you say? Jimmy Carter says let's meet with Syria, that will be fantastic. Meanwhile Israel is preparing for war. Israel is doing these drills. Do we have Joel Rosenberg on the phone? He's in Jerusalem. Hello, Joel.
ROSENBERG: Hello, Glenn, how are you doing? Three days away. Hang in there.
GLENN: Three days. Then I'm free at last, free at last. Joel, tell me about the drills that are happening right now in Israel and they say, you know, this is just ordinary run-of-the-mill stuff but you say it's not, right?
ROSENBERG: No, this is very, very significant. The entire country of Israel is engaged in a five-day exercise, the largest emergency drill ever performed in this country, a country of 7 million people. 1.7 million schoolchildren today had a race in the bomb shelters practicing as one part of the nationwide effort to prepare for a massive avalanche of missiles coming down from Iran, Syria, Hezbollah and Hamas. We just met with the Israel welfare minister this morning, one of the senior advisors to primary Olmert to be briefed, a number of evangelical leaders we've got over here for an epicenter conference tomorrow. And he basically made the case that the existential threat to Israel is Iran. They have no doubt here in Israel that Iran is feverishly trying to build, buy or steal nuclear weapons. What they don't understand is why Russia is helping them and why the United States and NATO seems to be asleep at the switch.
GLENN: Let me just switch gears with you here because I mean, you know, we've got Iran installing more centrifuges. You know, I've been talking about this for years that Iran is the head of the snake over there. This is just an evil, evil group of people that are preparing for the Mahdi which if you -- I don't think I've ever asked you this, Joel. If you look at the 12th Mahdi and the way these nut jobs over in Iraq interprets the Qur'an and everything else, this guy looks an awful lot like the antichrist, doesn't he?
ROSENBERG: He does, but he's not. The Bible describes antichrist with a capital A and a little A.
ROSENBERG: Meaning there's no question that what Ahmadinejad is in the spirit of the antichrist and what I mean by that is he wants to annihilate Judaeo-Christian civilization.
GLENN: I'm not talking about Ahmadinejad. I'm talking about the 12th Imam.
ROSENBERG: Oh, absolutely. There's certainly that same feeling. Now, the Bible describes in Daniel 9 that the antichrist will come from Roman origins, from the people who destroyed Jerusalem in 70 A.D., but that being said this will certainly be a false Messiah of which Jesus described in Matthew 24, three times in one chapter describing what to watch for in the last days. Jesus said watch for false Messiahs and this will be one of them. Now, what I don't know honestly, Glenn, is that is it possible that in the next few weeks or months or years someone is actually going to emerge that CNN and Fox and MSNBC and all these other networks will start to cover, Time will have them on the cover and could end up being the Mahdi of the year. I don't know. You know, we don't know what they're talking about. What we know is that Ahmadinejad and his allies believe so passionately that this Mahdi, this Islamic Messiah is coming and what's driving their foreign policy in Iran right now is their belief that they need to get ready for this Mahdi by annihilating two countries: Israel whom they call the little Satan, and the United States whom they call the great Satan. And anyone in Washington who doesn't understand the theological drive that's pushing Iranian foreign policy is at risk of being blindsided by an evil they may not see coming.
GLENN: Well, here's the thing that most people don't understand and I didn't understand it for a long time, we're the great Satan and little Satan, blah, blah, blah. What they mean by that is it is the same story line that Christians have. For the most part it's basically the same story except Israel is the little A antichrist and we are the big A antichrist. They don't -- we look at it as a person. They look at it as a country or an overwhelming force, right?
ROSENBERG: They do. Now, there is in the Qur'an an actual character named the Gajal (ph) who becomes an actual sort of antichrist figure, an actual person. But you are absolutely right. Radical Islam is a mirror image and therefore a massive distortion of the Jewish and Christian scriptures but there's a lot of similarities. It's just completely opposite.
ROSENBERG: They have a war of Gog and Magog, a Russian Iranian alliance that attacks Israel but they feel it wins.
GLENN: Wait, wait. I just want you to slow down on that.
GLENN: Gog and Magog, anybody who is a Christian grew up hearing Gog and Magog and you don't even know what it is. It is Iran and Russia aligning themselves. It's already been done. It's an amazing thing when you look at -- well, let me ask you this because this is what you do for a living now, Joel. Would you say that most of the big things are either, have already been done or they are on the verge of being done? The players and the pieces are in place to be able to get you to the end time?
ROSENBERG: Absolutely. You know, there are a thousand prophecies in the Bible. More than 500 of them have already been fulfilled. The last almost 500 of them deal with specific events that happen in the last days. Now, I'm literally looking out of my window in a hotel looking at the Mount of Olives and the temple mount here in Jerusalem as I speak to you and on the Mount of Olives Jesus was asked by the disciples, hey, when are you coming back and what should we watch for, what are the signs of your return. Now, Jesus could have given a very Washington political answer, a Rumsfeld answer: No comment, next question. But he doesn't. He answered the question. And when you look at that list and you look at events that are happening in this world today, it's kind of eerie because you can check them off one by one and then when you expand that list to look at other references to, quote, the last days or the latter times in the Jewish and Christian scriptures, you start saying, my goodness.
For example, you just described this prophecy of the war of Gog and Magog which as you and I have talked about before is Russia and Iran. Now, what's amazing about that is that Russia and Iran have never had an alliance with each other in the 2500 years since Ezekiel wrote the prophecy. Now, is that proof that the prophecy is going to be fulfilled in our lifetime, much less soon? No, you've got to be careful not to overreach. However --
GLENN: People have been saying this for thousands of years.
ROSENBERG: Yes. However, for 2,500 years this alliance, this political and military alliance in those two countries has never happened. It's why heads are starting to turn. And when you add all the other things, the preparations that ultra orthodox Jews are making, for example, to building their Temple, this is kind of interesting.
GLENN: How much of that is done and in storage? I've heard that the Temple, everything that is needed is done and is in storage just waiting for the space.
ROSENBERG: Well, the architectural plans are finished, the outfits, the clothing that the priests will wear are finished. The implements that will be used for Temple sacrifice are largely finished. And two years ago -- actually three years ago now, the summer of 2005 the Sanhedrin, the group of 71 rabbis that will govern the Temple was reconvened for the first time in 1600 years. So I call these strobe lights that you are coming in on a runway. We're not entirely sure how far from touchdown that we are but when you look at the preparations being done in Iraq to rebuild the literal ancient city of Babylon, they're underway.
I interviewed the Iraqi finance minister for my book "Epicenter." He's a senior Iraqi advisor to the prime minister and he described for me -- it's on the record in "Epicenter," he described for me the plans they have to rebuild that city and the tremendous cultural center with Holiday Inn and an amusement park. It's quite fascinating. Look, a lot of people say, you know, how do we even know that -- I mean, people have been saying for thousands of years the end of the year, blah, blah, blah. I understand that. But I'm standing right now in the nation of Israel which did not exist for 2,000 years and the only document on the planet that says it will exist in the last days is the Bible, and 60 years ago this country was reborn. Jews started coming back to the Holy Land. The ancient ruins have been rebuilt. The deserts are blooming. We've taken hundreds of evangelical leaders over the last few days through this country to see that Israel is the super sign, the one that you say, okay. When the Bible says look for wars, rumors of wars, earthquakes, famine, persecution of the believers in the last days, yes, that's all happening but it's always happened. What makes it different now is that Israel has been reborn as a country and that Russia and Iran are forming and alliance to annihilate her. It's got -- you know, these are what I've been writing these novels about, nonfiction book "Epicenter." This new book, "Dead Heat" is the aftermath. But the point us even for a skeptic, even for a cynic you have to say, goodness gracious, there are some trend lines that don't make sense outside of the prophecies of the Bible.
GLENN: I tell you, Joel, we want to continue our conversation in a couple of weeks if you don't mind.
ROSENBERG: Sure, absolutely.
GLENN: You are coming back and I'd like to do a series with you on radio and television about the different things that you're seeing and kind of spell it all out. I just finished your book last week, week before last.
ROSENBERG: "Dead Heat."
GLENN: I mean, it's just tremendous.
ROSENBERG: Thank you.
GLENN: I told you this last night on television it's the first time I've ever heard anyone explain. The United States is not mentioned in the book of Revelation. Nowhere does it say the United States or refer to us or anything like that.
GLENN: And people have said, well, that's just because we're all going to be in -- we're such a perfect, kind, Jesus-loving nation that we're all going to go up in the rapture. And I'm like, have you read the news lately? But your book, you take a different bet on it that we're going to be vaporized, that several cities will be vaporized. I think -- and you mention this in the book. You know, it could have been an economic vaporization or anything. I mean, there's a million things that could take us down right now that would make us not able to participate in the, you know, in the destruction or the defense of Israel.
ROSENBERG: Well, that's right. Now, I want to be clear with you on radio as I was on television last night which was the first line of this new novel, "Dead Heat" is I pray to God this one never comes true. The eerie way of the fictional elements seeming to come true and I don't want people to think that the Bible predicts the United States is going to get hit with nuclear terrorism. I don't. What I'm laying out is a fictional scenario that I think is potential consistent with the scriptures and which give people a chance to think through what might that look like and how might we be blindsided in the midst of a dead heat, in the midst of a campaign in which the country's so focused on an election which the race is so tight and the country is so bitterly divided that we are just not looking when we get hit by something that we should have seen coming but we didn't.
GLENN: It's a frightening thing. Joel Rosenberg, the author of "Dead Heat." Listen, if you read the "Left Behind" series, like the "Left Behind" series, this is left behind, I think, this is "Left Behind" for talk radio listeners. This is all of the real life things that are going on right now and you can look at them and go, oh, my gosh, and you can see it. It doesn't start on an airplane with everybody disappearing. It takes you all the way through on the real life things that are going on. It's a "Dead Heat," Joel Rosenberg. Great book, sir, and stay safe in Israel, will you?
ROSENBERG: Enjoy your vacation and I look forward to seeing you when we get back.
GLENN: You got it. We'll see you in a few days. Bye-bye.