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An Islamic State of mind: The demons of Palmyra

Written By | May 23, 2015

WASHINGTON, May 22, 2015 — Reuters said it best: “Nobody talks of Mosul or recapturing it from Islamic State. It is a forgotten city.” The capital of Iraq’s Anbar province sits a short 81 miles west of the nation’s capital Baghdad.

White House spokesman Josh Earnest, straight faced, told the press that President Obama’s policies for dealing with ISIS have “yielded important successes” and that the commander-in-chief won’t “light his hair on fire” every time a growing ISIS caliphate captures more of what Americans bled and died taking first from Saddam Hussein, then from al-Qaeda insurgents.

The President says he is gearing up for war. That is what he told the U.S. Coast Guard Academy’s graduating class of 2015. This war, “one where our Coast Guardsmen are already on the front lines,” said Obama, “will shape your entire careers—and that’s the urgent need to combat and adapt to climate change.”

ISIS takes Palmyra; Will UNESCO site be turned to rubble?

The president criticized “some folks back in Washington” for questioning the existence of Al Gore’s invisible friend: global warming or global climate change. “Our military leaders—generals and admirals, active duty and retired—know it’s happening. Our homeland security professionals know it is happening. And our Coast Guard knows it’s happening.”

As it prepares for this new war—as potentially endless, destructive and useless as our wars on poverty, drugs and terror—our nation has never been more vulnerable to the evil designs of her enemies. Pentagon strategists, under a delusional Obama, are more interested in devising schemes to combat a phantom menace more suited to the pages of Marvel Comics than the real monsters of our world, like China and ISIS.

If the Obama administration can’t perform a relatively simple task, like saving Western Civilization from a resurgent, totalitarian, religious ideology that hunts down cartoonists, destroys priceless archaeological treasures, beheads relief workers and crucifies children, what makes anyone think it can “save the planet” from rising temperatures and sea levels?

A war on climate change is safer than a war on ISIS. The enemy is nebulous and unseen. It won’t shoot back. As long as you’re actively doing something, no one can say that you’re failing or losing. It’s a war without firm benchmarks for success, and so no benchmarks for failure.

It’s a war on a ghost.

Almost a year after ISIS fighters marched into Mosul, they captured the ancient Syrian city of Palmyra, which sits about 134 miles northeast of Damascus. According to an old occult text called the Testament of Solomon, the wise ruler of Israel receives a ring giving him power over demons.

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In the story, King Solomon commands these demons to build his temple in Jerusalem and cities to serve as trading outposts along the periphery of his kingdom.

“He also built up Tadmor [the Greeks later named the city Palmyra] in the desert and all the store cities he had built in Hamath,” says the Old Testament’s 2 Chronicles 8:4.

When Justinian the Great ruled the Byzantine Empire (A.D. 527-565), the chronicler Malala wrote that Solomon chose to build Palmyra on the site where David slew Goliath.

Like modern-day Davids, ISIS happily slays the Goliath’s of the West. It is intent on destroying all ancient reminders of civilization’s rise from barbarism.

The demons have returned to Palmyra. But Obama is too distracted, swatting wildly at the natural variances in air temperature to notice the real monsters threatening the world.

Steven M. Lopez

Originally from Los Angeles, Steven M. Lopez has been in the news business for more than thirty years. He made his way around the country: Arizona, the Bay Area and now resides in South Florida.