Exactly sixty-nine years ago today (or seventy 360-day old-Hebrew years as of last Sunday), a flotilla of eight-hundred small boats began rescuing several hundred thousand highly-trained Allied (mostly British) troops from the shallow beaches of Dunkirk, France.
It was a desperate operation that should not have worked. (An expected order from Hitler to quash it never came.) It continued for ten days, holding off a Nazi juggernaut that had rolled over Europe in just nine short months. Younger readers may be familiar with the events via Ian McEwan’s acclaimed novel, Atonement and/or the film adaptation. The BBC describes it as follows:
The Prime Minister, Winston Churchill, has described the “miracle of deliverance” from Dunkirk and warned of an impending invasion…
Major-General Harold Alexander inspected the shores of Dunkirk from a motorboat this morning to make sure no-one was left behind before boarding the last ship back to Britain.
Why am I writing about this? Because past is prologue. Or, as I wrote back in March:
It has been said that the Greek (i.e., Western) mind tends to think of history and prophecy in linear terms, whereas the Hebrew mind tends to think of it in terms of patterns or echoes.
Since Sunday, we’ve seen two of the most evil regimes on the planet make unprecedented, audacious and highly destabilizing military advances — North Korea decisively entering the nuclear club and Iran sending warships into the Gulf of Aden (after successful tests of long-range missiles last week).
In response, the US and UN continue to dither with nice-sounding but known-to-be-meaningless words that can only embolden our foes and demoralize our erstwhile allies. Amidst this, it is revealed that Venezuela and Bolivia have been sending Iran uranium. Israel does what it must all alone (but not really), preparing for a conflict that can be nothing less than existential.
I am leaving out many details, of course. None of them make the picture look any prettier. Short take: evil is on the march with more momentum and determination than I can recall in my lifetime.
It is all coming rather suddenly, though not surprisingly, as if the floodgates had been opened… as if a restraint had been removed… as if…
Precisely seventy Hebrew years before all this came desperate, dreary Dunkirk, a miraculous retreat en route to victory over what seemed unstoppable evil.
Exactly the same interval before Obama’s inauguration came the end of Allied maritime neutrality in WWII. Precisely 70HY before Obama’s election came the assassination attempt on Hitler. And 70HY before Sarah Palin’s nomination by John McCain (the final opposition salvo before Obama’s victory lap) came Hitler’s invasion of Poland; the date he authorized Nazi doctors to…
…begin “euthanizing” physically and mentally handicapped people. Under the program Aktion T4, doctors could identify individuals as unsound and incurable, then put them to death. Neither patient nor family consent was required. Based on Nazi concepts of “racial hygiene” and supported by a desire to limit the costs of patient care, T4 systematically destroyed as many as 100,000 human beings. It was another demonstration of Nazi policies designed to eliminate those they considered unworthy of life.
(That bit about reducing the cost of care really caught my attention. Never seen that before.)
Precisely 70HY before Obama placed ‘attack’ ads raising concern about Clinton fundraiser Norman Hsu came Kristallnacht… an interesting, though admittedly odd, imperfect and way-out-of-proportion correlation that would mean very little except for the much-more-perfect 75HY correlation (to the very hour) between Obama’s clinching the Dem nomination and the ‘Night of Long Knives’, during which Hitler cemented his power over rival factions within the Nazi party.
Nutty? Out-there? Loony-tunes? Is Ultraguy finally off his meds? Maybe. I’m not letting any of it interfere with my daily routine of God, family and work, in that order. I’m not hunkering down in a bunker or getting depressed. I’m getting excited and emboldened. And amidst that I can’t help thinking…
Pentecost is Sunday… right in the middle of this auspicious anniversary… the end of the first Easter season under a man who meets the technical definition for being an antichrist (opposed to Christ’s agenda) and may end up meeting the classic, singular definition as well. We shall see.
At the rate the headlines are going, almost anything could happen and very soon. Will some be evacuated before the big, hot flash-point we all know is coming? We can only wait, watch and pray. Though we’re told we cannot know the day or hour, we should not cease to look for signs and know the season. As my in-laws know only too well, Dunkirk was a blessing to just a few. The rest had to wait four long years…
UPDATE: Other pieces of a much larger pattern include the possibility of a volcano erupting in the heart of Islam (stranger than fiction…) and the cradle of first-century Christianity turning firmly back towards Islam.
…in the past few days magma levels had risen to 4 km below the surface from 8 km.
Turkey is increasingly moving away from its pro-Western orientation and Euro-Atlantic institutions… Turkish foreign policy’s center of gravity is shifting towards other regions, mostly the Muslim Middle East…