In 2003 while lobbying leaders to put together the Coalition of the Willing, President Bush spoke to France’s President Jacques Chirac. Bush wove a story about how the Biblical creatures Gog and Magog were at work in the Middle East and how they must be defeated.Wonder what "Gog and Magog" are in French? Perhaps that was the stumbling-block.
In Genesis and Ezekiel Gog and Magog are forces of the Apocalypse who are prophesied to come out of the north and destroy Israel unless stopped. The Book of Revelation took up the Old Testament prophecy:
“And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison, And shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle … and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them.”
Bush believed the time had now come for that battle, telling Chirac:
“This confrontation is willed by God, who wants to use this conflict to erase his people’s enemies before a New Age begins”.
The story of the conversation emerged only because the Elysée Palace, baffled by Bush’s words, sought advice from Thomas Römer, a professor of theology at the University of Lausanne. Four years later, Römer gave an account in the September 2007 issue of the university’s review, Allez savoir!. The article apparently went unnoticed, although it was referred to in a French newspaper.
The story has now been confirmed by Chirac himself in a new book, published in France in March, by journalist Jean Claude Maurice. Chirac is said to have been stupefied and disturbed by Bush’s invocation of Biblical prophesy to justify the war in Iraq and “wondered how someone could be so superficial and fanatical in their beliefs”.
... Meanwhile, events of Biblical proportions may unfold in Korea:
The U.S. and South Korea put their military forces on high alert Thursday after North Korea renounced the truce keeping the peace between the two Koreas since 1953.Perhaps Bush's translation was in error, and the forces coming up out of the north are going to destroy Seoul? Curse these modern translations!
The North also accused the U.S. of preparing to attack the isolated communist country in the wake of its second nuclear bomb test, and warned it would retaliate to any hostility with "merciless" and dangerous ferocity.
Seoul moved a 3,500-ton destroyer into waters near the Koreas' disputed western maritime border while smaller, high-speed vessels were keeping guard at the front line, South Korean news reports said. The defense ministry said the U.S. and South Korean militaries would increase surveillance activities.
Pyongyang, meanwhile, positioned artillery guns along the west coast on its side of the border, the Yonhap news agency said. The Joint Chiefs of Staffs in Seoul refused to confirm the reports.