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Posts tagged ‘Mikhail Gorbachev’

Is Iran’s New President Good News for Israel and the U.S.?.

Jim Denison

Dr. Hasan Rowhani is fluent in Arabic, English, French, German, Russian, as well as his native Persian. He has a master’s and doctoral degree from the University of GlasgowHe once helped negotiate a suspension of Iran‘s nuclear enrichment program. He also supported public demonstrations that were staged after the rigged 2009 presidential election.

Now he is the president of Iran, the nation with perhaps the greatest ability to impact Israel and the West. Time calls his victory a “surprise landslide.”

Yesterday, President Rowhani pledged to follow a “path of moderation” and promised greater openness regarding his country’s nuclear program. He called his election a “new era” for Iran and vowed to “follow the path of moderation and justice, not extremism.” However, he also stated that he would not attempt to halt Iran’s uranium enrichment, nor does he have the authority to do so.

Is the election of a “moderate” leader in Iran good news for Israel and the West? Before we make such an assumption, let’s consider what’s happening in Egypt. I remember when Mohammed Morsi, the former NASA engineer, was elected there as a “moderate.” However, he soon seized legislative and constitution-writing authority, followed by a “constitutional declaration” that granted him unprecedented power.

Now he has appointed a governor of Luxor from an Islamist group that once killed 62 people there, most of them tourists. Luxor is home to the ancient temple of Karnak and is one of the most spectacular sites I’ve ever visited. On November 17, 1997, six terrorists killed a five-year-old child, four Japanese couples visiting there on their honeymoons, and 49 other tourists. Now a member of their group will govern the city and its tourism.

President Rowhani may turn out to be a force for moderation in Iran, leading reforms akin to those of Mikhail Gorbachev in the Soviet Union. He may be a wolf in sheep’s clothing, trying to convince us that he is working for peace while his nation furthers its nuclear weapons programs. Or he may be something else. Israel’s prime minister notes that Rowhani recently called Israel “the great Zionist Satan” and is urging caution, calling on the West to continue pressure on Iran until it stops its nuclear program.

I have no idea if Hasan Rowhani will be a force for greater good or greater evil in Iran and the world. But I have already prayed today for him to make Christ his Lord. As Jesus is revealing himself through dreams and visions across the Muslim world, would you join me in asking him to do the same for Dr. Rowhani?

Saul of Tarsus “persecuted the church of God” (1 Corinthians 15:9) before Jesus made him “my chosen instrument to carry my name before the Gentiles and their kings and before the people of Israel” (Acts 9:15). What could Jesus do with the president of Iran today?

Jim Denison, Ph.D., is a subject matter expert on cultural and contemporary issues. He founded the Denison Forum on Truth and Culture, a nonsectarian “think tank” designed to engage contemporary issues with biblical truth in 2009 and is the author of seven books, including Radical Islam: What You Need to Know. For more information on the Denison Forum, visit To connect with Dr. Denison in social media, visit or

Publication date: June 18, 2013

Gorbachev In Hospital for Tests.

Image: Gorbachev In Hospital for Tests

Security guards stand at the gate of the Central clinical hospital in Moscow where former Soviet president Mikhail Gorbachev (inset) was admitted for tests, June 11, 2013.

A spokesman for Mikhail Gorbachev says the 82-year-old former Soviet president is in the Kremlin‘s hospital for tests.

Vladimir Polyakov told The Associated Press that Gorbachev was taken to the hospital in suburban Moscow on Tuesday. He said the tests were routine and did not give further details.

Gorbachev complained of health problems at a public lecture in March, and a month later he declined to attend the funeral for former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher because of illness.

Since the 1991 collapse of the Soviet Union, Gorbachev has run a foundation for political, social and economic studies.

© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Britain Bids Farewell to ‘Iron Lady’ Thatcher at Grand Funeral.

Image: Britain Bids Farewell to 'Iron Lady' Thatcher at Grand Funeral

Top: Margaret Thatcher’s coffin is carried up the steps into St Paul’s Cathedral. Bottom: Margaret Thatcher’s funeral service inside St Paul’s, London, Britain, April 17, 2013.

LONDON — Royalty, dignitaries, and admirers from all walks of life paid their final respects to Margaret Thatcher on Wednesday in the grandest funeral for a British leader in half a century — although a few boos from the London crowd were a reminder of her divisive rule.The right-wing former prime minister whom the Soviet Union christened the “Iron Lady” was bid farewell with military honors, patriotic hymns, cheers, and tears.

Her coffin was borne on a horse-drawn gun carriage then soldiers and sailors carried her casket into St. Paul’s Cathedral for a service attended by Queen Elizabeth and 11 serving prime ministers from around the world.

Outside, thousands of supporters lined the route, some throwing blue roses in her path.

Opponents chanted “Ding dong the witch is dead” and turned their backs on her coffin as it passed by — an indication of the divisions which Britain’s longest serving prime minister of the 20th Century still provokes due to the tumultuous change she brought.

Editor’s Note: LIGNET: Was al-Qaeda Behind the Attacks?
Thatcher sought to arrest Britain’s post-war decline with free-market economic policies which enraged her left-wing opponents by smashing the unions and privatizing Britain’s national assets.

Her supporters view her as a champion of freedom while her opponents accuse her of destroying communities and ushering in an era of greed.

“The storm of conflicting opinions centers on the Mrs Thatcher who became a symbolic figure, even an ism, but today the remains of the real Margaret Hilda Roberts are here at her funeral service,” the Bishop of London, Richard Chartres, told mourners gathered inside St Paul’s.

Tears ran down the face of Britain’s finance minister George Osborne during the address.

The cleric brought smiles to the faces of former leader Tony Blair, Cameron’s wife Samantha, and other mourners when he recounted a story about her telling him not to eat duck pate because it was fattening.

Cameron and Amanda, Thatcher’s 19-year old granddaughter, read from the New Testament while patriotic hymns echoed around the ornately decorated dome of the 300-year-old cathedral.

The service was attended by 2,300 mourners including former British prime ministers and the government’s entire Cabinet, two heads of state, and 17 foreign ministers. Former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger also attended.

The music included her favorite hymns, among them “I Vow to Thee My Country.”


Thousands of supporters lined the streets of London as her casket made its final journey from the center of British political power in Westminster to the cathedral. Most people clapped in respect but about two dozen opponents turned their backs on the procession.

One man held up a placard reading “Boo!” and some shouted “scum” while supporters threw flowers and cheered.

Thatcher, who governed Britain from 1979 to 1990, died on April 8 aged 87 after suffering a stroke.

Polls have shown that many Britons are unhappy that the estimated 10-million pound ($15 million) pound bill for the ceremonial funeral is being picked up by the taxpayer at a time of austerity and spending cuts.

The late leader was honored with a gun salute from the Tower of London every minute and the silencing of the Big Ben bell at the Houses of Parliament.

British military bandsmen played Beethoven, Mendelssohn, and Chopin to accompany the grandest funeral for a British politician since that of Thatcher’s hero, Winston Churchill, in 1965.

“She was the first woman prime minister, she served for longer in the job than anyone for 150 years, she achieved some extraordinary things in her life,” said Cameron, current leader of the Conservative Party.

“What is happening today is absolutely fitting and right,” he said, dismissing the critics.

A handwritten note placed on a wreath of white flowers on her coffin read: “Beloved mother — always in our hearts.”

More than 700 armed forces personnel from units that served in the 1982 Falklands War against Argentina — Thatcher’s most emblematic victory — lined the streets. Police also stood all along the route.

People gathered along the funeral procession route early in the morning with placards that reflected a range of views.

“You gave millions of us hope, freedom, ambition,” read one. Another said: “Over 10 million pounds of our money for a Tory funeral.” Tory is another word for Conservative.

“This country was pretty well down on its knees in the seventies,” said Roger Johnson, among the admirers lining the pavement in central London.

“Margaret Thatcher came along and sorted everything out. Her legacy is that she put the word “great” back into Great Britain,” he said.


There were notable absences.

Former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev and Nancy Reagan, the widow of Thatcher’s great U.S. friend and ally Ronald Reagan, were too frail to attend.

Thatcher struck up a close relationship with Reagan during the Cold War and was among the first to decide that Gorbachev was a man she could “do business with”.

The guest list for her funeral has prompted talk of diplomatic snubs. The United States did not send a senior figure from President Barack Obama’s administration.

Argentina’s ambassador refused to attend after Britain failed to invite Argentinian President Cristina Fernandez, at the Thatcher family’s request, amid renewed tensions over the Falkland Islands.

Relations have been strained since the 1982 war, when Thatcher ordered a task force to retake the South Atlantic territory after Argentinian troops seized it.

The abiding domestic images of her premiership will remain those of conflict — police confrontations with massed ranks of coal miners whose year-long strike failed to save their pits and communities, Thatcher riding a tank in a white headscarf, and flames rising above Trafalgar Square in riots over the unpopular “poll tax” which contributed to her downfall.

Cameron said Thatcher’s battles, particularly her crushing of strike-prone trade unions, had reduced divisions.

“She was a bold politician who recognized the consensus was failing. . . . She took tough and necessary decisions and in many ways created a new consensus,” he said.

Even Thatcher’s critics concede that, for better or for ill, she transformed the face of Britain.

In 1979, when she came to power, Britain was in the grip of a long post-war decline with troubled labor relations and low productivity and was being outperformed by continental rivals France and Germany.

She turned that around by boosting home ownership and the service industry, breaking the power of the unions, and deregulating financial services.

But the price — growing inequality and the closure of large swathes of Britain’s industrial base — left parts of the country struggling to create new jobs and rebuild decimated communities, leaving a bitter taste which endures.

© 2013 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.


U.K. Denies Thatcher Funeral Snubs as Merkel, Rajoy Stay Away.

Prime Minister David Cameron’s office said it wasn’t concerned that foreign leaders are staying away from Margaret Thatcher’s funeral as it became clear that the German and Spanish heads of government won’t attend.

Chancellor Angela Merkel and Spain’s prime minister, Mariano Rajoy, are sending their foreign ministers, Guido Westerwelle and Jose Manuel Garcia-Margallo, to the service in London’s St. Paul’s Cathedral on April 17, their governments said Monday.

Merkel signed a book of condolence for Thatcher at the British Embassy in Berlin April 11, describing her as “one of the great political figures of the 20th century.”

Thatcher’s and Cameron’s Conservatives were part of the same pan-European bloc as Merkel’s Christian Democrats and Rajoy’s People’s Party before pulling out in 2009.

Cameron said in January he will seek looser ties with the European Union if re-elected in two years’ time, promising a referendum on renegotiated membership terms by the end of 2017

Cameron’s spokesman, Jean-Christophe Gray, asked by reporters Monday if the premier is concerned about the absence of senior statespeople at the funeral replied, “Not at all.”

He said that the list of guests already announced “says a very great deal about the breadth of Lady Thatcher’s global stature.”

Canada’s Stephen Harper, Mario Monti of Italy and Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk are among the most prominent guests whose attendance has been confirmed so far.

Too Strenuous

Thatcher-era German Chancellor Helmut Kohl declined an invitation to attend the funeral because the trip would be too strenuous, his spokeswoman, Marion Scheller, said by phone Monday. Kohl, 83, is wheelchair-bound.

Former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev, 82, a man Thatcher said she “could do business with,” won’t be there. “Unfortunately, he can’t come because of his health condition,” his spokesman, Vladimir Polyakov, said April 10.

More than 2,000 invitations have been sent out for the funeral, the biggest for a political leader in Britain since that of Winston Churchill in 1965.

The U.K. has invited all surviving U.S. presidents but has yet to hear who will attend. The French government has also to announce who it will be sending. Three members of the U.S. House of Representatives, led by Marsha Blackburn, a Republican from Tennessee, will attend, Speaker John Boehner said Monday.

© Copyright 2013 Bloomberg News. All rights reserved.

Proactive Servants Soar in the Ministry.


Dr. Morris-CerulloDr. Morris Cerullo (l) and Greg Morrow in Moscow in 1989

One of the great privileges and most rewarding opportunities you can experience serving another man’s ministry is found in the secret of being a proactive servant.


A proactive person is defined as one who “creates or controls a situation by causing something to happen rather than responding to it after it has happened.”

A fruitful, effective disciple is much more than an order taker. After proving yourself faithful over time, a foundation of trust is established that is the key ingredient required to move from a relationship of simple service to becoming a proactive partner.

I will never forget Moscow, 1989.

For 14 consecutive years prior, from the platform of the world renowned Royal Albert Hall, Dr. Morris Cerullo prophesied that Russia’s iron curtain would come down and the Soviet Union would open in an unprecedented way to the preaching of the gospel.

In the late 1980s, that is precisely what began to happen as a movement for the democratization of the Soviet Union referred to as “Perestroika”  was being championed by then General Secretary of the Communist Party Mikhail Gorbachev.

The beep of the fax machine at my desk in our European office in the fall of 1989 signaled an incoming communication. As I began to read, I discovered that it was an invitation from the President of the Russian Pentecostal Union, Rev. Bilas Roman, asking Brother Cerullo to be the first to come to Moscow in the Perestroika era to conduct an open public crusade.

Immediately, I shared the invitation with Dr. Cerullo and made flight arrangements to meet with Rev. Bilas and his leaders to begin to make the plans for this historic invitation.

We settled on a date in December at the historic 7,000-seat Izmailovo Auditorium on the outskirts of Moscow.

When the time came, I arrived in Moscow with Dr. Cerullo the day before as he was scheduled to appear on the Moscow news that evening. An interview that was set to fill a one-or two-minute segment was mightily visited by the presence of God and extended to nearly 30 minutes!

The host was so deeply touched that she asked Dr. Cerullo to pray for the viewers to receive the miracle of salvation, and then followed that with a request for Dr. Cerullo to pray for all viewers who were in need of physical healing.

The phones there at the news station immediately were jammed with callers testifying to God’s saving and healing power. God was beginning to shake the nation right before our eyes.

That night, when our interpreter returned to his apartment, he was met by his elderly atheist neighbor who had waited for him in order to testify that when Dr. Cerullo prayed, she experienced a deep heat in her back and an immediate healing from years of a debilitating spinal condition! Right there on her porch, she prayed with our translator to receive Christ as Savior!

The next afternoon, even after opening the doors three hours early and filling the Izmailovo Auditorium to capacity, the crowds were still 10-deep encircling the entire arena with great expectancy.

The police insisted that the church leaders convince Dr. Cerullo to cancel the meeting so that they could disperse the people, who had now begun to damage the property, breaking panes of glass, etc., in an effort to force themselves into the building.

The top leaders approached me and requested to speak with Dr. Cerullo about the security problems and to make the request that he postpone the meeting.

My job was to not disturb Dr. Cerullo with a negative report before a meeting, but to simply solve it myself so that he was able to stay focused and uninterrupted prior to the service.

This was an opportunity for me to be proactive, and not disturb the servant of God who was in his customary time of prayer, fasting and preparation for the meeting.

With the Russian leaders standing before me shaken, I quietly prayed for God’s wisdom.

Here’s what I recommended to the leaders:

What if we take the many boxes containing 5,000 brand new Bibles we had delivered in the arena to give to the new converts, and take them outside to the people who couldn’t get in—with the promise that Dr. Cerullo would come back to Moscow again soon in a larger stadium for another meeting?

The leaders nodded their heads in agreement. We handed the boxes of Bibles to the police who brought them out to the people. The people scooped the Bibles up as if they had just won the lottery! They were happy to receive them and peace was restored when they heard that Dr. Cerullo would return to Moscow for another meeting in the near future.

That night was one of the most glorious services I have ever been a part of. As Brother Cerullo brought the simple message of the gospel, nearly all of the 7,000 present received the greatest miracle in the world—the miracle of forgiveness of sins and the healing of their souls through the salvation of the blood of Jesus Christ!

Several months later we returned to Moscow, this time in the 15,000-seat Olympic Stadium, for three capacity nights—nearly 50,000 precious Russians combined—giving their lives to Christ!

The Apostle Paul said, “I have planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the increase. So then neither is he that planteth anything, neither he that watereth, but God that giveth the increase” (I Cor. 3:6-7, KJV).

As the mentor/student relationship grows over time, you will know the heart of the man or woman you are serving and what he or she would expect in certain situations.

This knowledge makes you a much more valuable servant, and you are able to move from a place of simply waiting for instructions to becoming a creative contributor to the overall vision and purpose of your leader and their ministry.

While Dr. Cerullo is the unquestioned visionary and strong spiritual leader of MCWE (Morris Cerullo World Evangelism), one of his great strengths as a mentor is his humility, and the expectation that his key team members operate with an authority and spiritual license to bring their creative ideas and input to the table on any and all aspects of the ministry.

It takes the investment and trust of a great mentor to know when and how much authority his servant can successfully be released to handle.

A man can only truly be responsible and accountable for the success of that which he perceives he has authority for.

Some of the most successful outreaches of MCWE through the years were a result of the synergy between Dr. Cerullo and our team, which fueled our passion and creativity to bring “God ideas” and suggestions to our leader—and many were implemented with great spiritual fruit.

However, a word to the wise: Be ready when bringing an idea to be willing to become responsible for personally filling it!

Are you ready to take your next step in serving another person’s ministry?  If there is a need in your church or ministry that you see is not being filled, maybe it is God calling you to be proactive and volunteer to fill it—and not wait for someone else to do it—or for you to be asked!

Now is your season to soar as a proactive servant!

Note: The above is an excerpt from The Blessing of Serving Another Man’s Ministry: Seven Serving Secrets That Will Sentence You To Success, available on starting at $2.99. Discounted bulk copies available direct from author at Join Greg Mauro’s Facebook page.

Written by Greg Mauro

For the original article, visit

Thatcher Adviser: Britain’s Iron Lady Embodied ‘Freedom’ in Life and Death.

Reflecting on his time as a senior adviser to Margaret Thatcher, John Browne tells Newsmax TV that Britain’s Iron Lady, in both life and death, embodied the central theme captured in her country’s Magna Carta, and in America’s Declaration of Independence — freedom.

“It meant freedom from onerous taxation. It meant freedom from outside aggression. It meant freedom from the abuse of trade union’s power, and all of these things,” said Browne in an exclusive interview on Monday. “Of course, by the time it started to filter through into the British economy it became freedom and enterprise.”

Story continues below video.

A former member of England’s Parliament, Browne said that he was deeply saddened by Monday’s news that Thatcher, whom he considered to be one of the world’s greatest leaders, had passed away after suffering a stroke.

“When she took over in 1979 England was giggling its way into the ocean,” he lamented. “When she left it was a really vibrant and growing economy. And it spilled into other areas. For example, we had a public sector debt repayment schedule — not borrowing $1 trillion a year and printing $1 trillion a year.”

Browne, who is now a senior market strategist with Euro-Pacific Capital, last saw his former boss several years ago when he was a guest aboard magazine publisher Steve Forbes’ yacht, The Highlander, off Fishers Island in Long Island Sound.

“Margaret Thatcher was there at dinner and she greeted me by touching me softly on the wrist and she said, ‘John, we fought many great battles together,’” he recalled. “That was very touching. I mean it was a very touching farewell in a way, because I haven’t seen her since.”

Having served as principal adviser to the Thatcher government on issues related to the then Soviet Union, Browne was struck by Thatcher’s willingness to accept the notion that then Agriculture Minister Mikhail Gorbachev might be someone with whom she and the West could do business.

“I was put in charge of looking after Mr. and Mrs. Gorbachev when they first came to the West, and of course he was then a Politburo member, but not the leader of the Soviet Union,” said Browne.

“Over the first day I got the distinct impression that this man was going to be the next leader of the Soviet Union. I took him to the British Museum and all this other stuff, and to receptions and things like that,” said Browne, who shared his impression with the British Foreign Office, only to be dismissed.

“On the other hand, about 15 minutes later after division, I was in Margaret Thatcher’s private office in the House of Commons and she sat forward in her chair. She said, ‘really? Do you really think there’s really going to be change in the Soviet Union?’ And so she was prepared to listen,” said Browne. “And exactly the same thing happened in the United States. She asked me to send my paper, which I wrote all about it afterwards, to President Reagan, who wrote a charming letter back.”

But like their British counterparts, the U.S. State Department “poured cold water” all over such a notion, according to Browne, who said that he was subsequently dispatched by the British government to personally brief Reagan before his Geneva meeting with Gorbachev.

“He was prepared to listen, just like Margaret Thatcher. The others weren’t prepared to listen. They were so steeped in the old ways and these two great leaders were prepared to think outside the box,” observed Browne, who noted that both leaders left their countries with vibrant economies.

“When they combined with Gorbachev we had the huge achievement of the end of the cold phase of the Second World War, and the massive freedom spread throughout the world,” he explained.

Browne likened the Cold War to a “glue” that restricted movement and stifled free enterprise throughout the world.

“When that glue melted, suddenly, the world was free,” he said.

Thatcher’s death, like Reagan’s several years earlier, marks the end of an era.

“Yes, it is a sad day,” said Browne. “But I’m lucky and privileged to have lived under her, and to have enjoyed the free enterprise she and Reagan gave the world.”

© 2013 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


By Paul Scicchitano and Kathleen Walter

Historian Brinkley to Newsmax: Reagan Treated Thatcher With Deference.

The late President Ronald Reagan enjoyed former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher’s character and personality so much, he would put her on speaker phone in the Oval Office so that aides could hear her speak, presidential historian Douglas Brinkley told Newsmax.

“He just got a kick out her aura, steadiness, and resolve,” Brinkley said. “He was close to others, but nothing like Margaret Thatcher.”

Thatcher died Monday at age 87 after suffering a stroke.

Brinkley said Reagan and Thatcher gelled in part because they saw eye-to-eye concerning the liberal excesses in the United States and socialist overreach in Great Britain during the 1960s and 1970s.

As champions of free markets and limited government, they both sought to curtail labor unions from gaining too much power. “They both believed in clipping the wings of the labor unions,” said Brinkley.

Brinkley noted they didn’t always agree, especially over Britain’s conflict regarding the Falklands Islands after Argentina invaded the South Atlantic archipelago in 1982.

When Reagan objected to the British fighting over the small islands, Thatcher asked if he would seek U.S. sovereignty over a similar attack against portions of Alaska.

They agreed on issues far more than they disagreed, Brinkley noted, including Thatcher’s helping to convince Reagan that former Soviet Union leader Mikhail Gorbachev was someone they could work with as the Cold War came to a close.

“He would treat her with the deference of Mother Teresa,” Brinkley said. “He was very deferential because he admired her so much.”

© 2013 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

By David Yonkman, Washington Correspondent

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