By Garner Ted Armstrong

While everyone expects a quick, massive strike against Iraq; thousands of Iraqi troops surrendering; a coalition victory within perhaps only one or two weeks, there are some chilling predictions being floated around which merit thought.

For example, since oil is already at an incredible all-time high, at around $35 per barrel (gas was $2.50 at the pump in Hawaii recently), and is already having a tremendous impact on consumers, especially commuters and travelers, what if Saddam Hussein, true to many gloomy predictions, sets fire to his oil wells, and sends crude oil prices upward to perhaps $50 per barrel or higher? This would send a reverberating shock wave around the world, causing a global economic downturn.

Among the many “what if’s” are:

What if a US aircraft carrier is attacked by a suicide jet pilot, with explosives or C/B (chemical or biological) weapons aboard, flying a Mirage 3 at up to 3 times the speed of sound, who manages to penetrate the carrier’s defenses?

What if Saddam once again launches SCUDS against Israel, this time with C/B warheads which causes massive loss of life in Israel, and brings Israel into the war?

What if Syria, the Hezbollah and Hamas all attack Israel if Israel retaliates against Iraq with nuclear weapons?

What if a stray SCUD destroys the Dome of the Rock and/or the Al Aksa Mosques on the Temple Mount, and the Israelis get the blame?

What if Saddam launches C/B attacks against massed US and coalition troops, causing a wide scale outbreak of anthrax, or mass death from VX or botulism?

What if anti-aircraft fire brings down an American B1 Stealth bomber; the pride of American technology and power?

Unfortunately, millions of Americans were convinced by video scenes of smart bombs flying down elevator shafts during the first war in the Gulf that our munitions are invariably accurate; many military leaders have said our technology has increased so that such munitions are far more advanced than during 1991, and that ten times the number of them will be launched. Therefore, millions are unprepared for massive “collateral damage” such as bombs landing on schools, hospitals and residential areas.

Rest assured the first pictures available of dead and dying women and children will be given prime time and front-page play. Also, remember the reaction of the American public at pictures of the bruised and puffy face of a captured pilot; the reaction when “friendly fire” killed the entire crew and passengers aboard a Bradley Fighting Vehicle. Such accidents are virtually guaranteed in the chaos of war.

Will some of these “what if’s” actually occur?

They cannot be dismissed, just because they are horrifying to contemplate.

For decades, I have known that a global financial meltdown will result in the collapse of moderate governments and the rise of dictators. If oil should skyrocket to $50 per barrel and remain that high for many months, or even a year or two, the impact would be so incredible on Japan, Europe, and, yes, the United States, that just such a global meltdown would occur.

Many countries would be bankrupt; huge financial institutions would collapse; billions of dollars would be lost; social unrest and the collapse of governments would follow.

We may be only hours, or a few days, away from determining if any of these possibilities actually occur.

What we HOPE will happen is:

(1) Some of Saddam’s own generals revolt, and either assassinate him, or hand him over.
(2) Massive surrenders occur of whole divisions, who throw down their weapons and refuse to fight.
(3) Special forces are dropped by parachute and helicopters into the critical oil fields in time to prevent Saddam’s forces from destroying them.
(4) The first wave of tomahawk missiles and smart bombs so shock and awe the Iraqis that virtually the entire Iraqi army surrenders.
(5) That US forces actually uncover tangible proof that Saddam has weapons of mass destruction, and intended using them.
(6) That millions of ordinary Iraqis are dancing in the streets, welcoming coalition forces as deliverers.
(7) That Saddam’s two sons are either killed or captured, along with the top echelon of Iraq’s government.
(8) That political prisoners are freed, and begin relating their horrendous stories of torture and intimidation.
(9) That the Iraqi people accept a provisional government which includes Shiites, Kurds, and tribal leaders, and which is viewed, not as a US or coalition puppet government, but a legitimate new Iraqi government which guarantees freedom.
(10) That it is all over very quickly.

One thing is sure. We are living in tumultuous times; times with potential for such massive upheavals world wide that even World War II could be eclipsed.

Again I say, WATCH!

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