by Richard T. Ritenbaugh
Under cover of Denmark's recent decision to reject the European Community's Maastricht treaty, nine of the EC's member nations took a significant step toward a unified military force.
On June 19, representatives of the nine-member Western European Union signed a document revitalizing the dormant organization, promising to send peacekeeping forces to troubled areas under UN sanctions. Analysts immediately remarked that the EC's goal in reviving the WEU is to transform it into united Europe's defense arm.
With the United States diminishing its presence in the region, the EC sees a growing need for its own military force to protect its interests on the continent and abroad. German Defense Minister Volker Ruehe said troops could initially be sent where NATO troops could not, such as into the former USSR. In the least the WEU allows the EC to act independently of NATO and U.S. restrictions.
Formation of a strong EC demands a military option. For now the WEU is a defense or security pact, deployed only to protect. But unwittingly or not, the EC is preparing an offensive weapon, ready to be used by a leader with more agressive aims.
Daniel's prophecy of the king of the North foresees such a situation. The leader of the Beast power "shall honor a god of fortresses" (Daniel 11:38). Unfortunately for many nations, the Beast will not stop there.
"At the time of the end the king of the South shall attack him; and the king of the North shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter the countries, overwhelm them, and pass through" (verse 40). Later, Revelation 19:19 shows him turning his ferocity against Christ at His return, but he is overcome and thrown into the Lake of Fire (verse 20).
Major prophetic events must start somewhere, and often they start very small. The EC, with little fanfare, has just crept closer to the rising of "a beast . . . out of the sea" (Revelation 13:1). And just how quickly can that Beast rise if all its parts are pre-fabricated with only some assembly required?