Brian is a well known Bible teacher with a particular emphasis on Biblical end time events. Believing that these events are already underway, he believes that the Rapture of the Church to glory is imminent. Brian and Gilly (pic here with Bethan)travel throughout the UK and he also teaches in Europe and the USA. Although they are regularly in fellowships and churches who know them well, they are most happy to visit new venues to bring the message of the Gospel and the nearness of Christs return.
Saturday, 11 January 2014
"PEACE DEAL IS BEST ISRAEL WILL GET, SAYS LIEBERMAN", ACCORDING TO THE DAILY TELEGRAPH.
Peace deal is best Israel will get, says Lieberman
Interview: Israel's hardline foreign minister shows signs of a shift to the centre as he settles into a second stint in office
Mr Lieberman, who once worked as a student nightclub bouncer, appears to be a changed man since he was exonerated in courtPhoto: EDDIE MULHOLLAND
Avigdor Lieberman, the hawkish Israeli foreign minister widely regarded as a major obstacle to peace with the Palestinians, has urged his country to accept the deal currently being brokered by Washington as the best offer it will ever receive.
In a change of direction likely to shock the jaded Middle Eastern diplomatic scene, Mr Lieberman said that John Kerry, the US Secretary of State, deserved praise and thanks for his efforts to bring the Israelis and Palestinians together.
“It’s the best proposal we can get and we really appreciate the efforts of Secretary of State John Kerry. He has really put a lot of energy into the issue,” Mr Lieberman told the Telegraph.
In his first major interview since returning to office in November, when he was acquitted of corruption charges that had dogged his career for years, he said it was “crucial” for Israelis to maintain contact with Palestinians, no matter how limited the prospects of success.
“With or without a comprehensive solution we will continue to live together and continue to be neighbours. There are many problems on the ground, so this direct contact, this negotiation, these talks - it’s very important to keep alive and maintain,” he said.
Amid numerous visits to the region, Mr Kerry has set the two sides a target of April to reach a “framework agreement” that would work as a guideline for a final peace deal.
The goal of the deal is to establish an independent Palestinian state and settle such contentious issues as the the jurisdiction of disputed Jerusalem and right of return of Palestinians displaced since Israel was created in 1948.
After 20 years of failure since the Oslo Accords placed peace within tantalising reach, few in the region are predicting success.
But Mr Lieberman’s apparent transformation from hardliner to pragmatist will boost hopes that this time could be different, and that one of the world’s most obstinate and damaging conflicts could be at last resolved.
The burly and broad-shouldered Mr Lieberman, who once worked as a student nightclub bouncer, appears to be a changed man since he was exonerated in court.
Absent, for now, is the firebrand politician who said that Gaza should be treated like “Chechnya” and who called for the execution of Arab-Israeli MPs who had met members of Hamas, the paramilitary group that runs one of the two Palestinian territories.
Gone too, is the foreign minister who in his first stint said that as a West Bank settler, he was incapable of objectivity about the peace process.
The idea of Lieberman the responsible statesman may be hard for his critics to swallow, but amid the familiar hostility in his words towards Iran, there is now a wait and see approach on the talks between Tehran and six world powers that could lead to a permanent nuclear deal.
Mr Lieberman furthermore waved away several years of hostility between the Obama White House and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, as “differences between friends”.
Rather than diehard declarations about protecting the state of Israel, he said his biggest challenge as foreign minister was to have his country associated with issues other than “the Palestinian conflict, terror and Iran”.
He wanted, he said, to “open the eyes of international community to our achievements – to our very successful economy, agriculture, water management, science, high tech industry”.
Mr Lieberman’s opinion of Mahmoud Abbas has certainly not become favourable, but the chairman of the Palestinian Authority is no longer referred to as a “diplomatic terrorist”.
Instead, he said, there is a question mark over whether or not Mr Abbas “can deliver the goods” in the peace talks.
“You must be ready for compromise, but I am not sure he is able. But we must check [wait for] this possibility because we [Israelis] are ready to go far.”
Mr Lieberman was talking to the Telegraph in London after meeting William Hague, the Foreign Secretary, as well as Ed Miliband, the Leader of Opposition and members of the foreign affairs select committee in a trip that is part of a rehabilitation exercise.
The abrasiveness that made Mr Lieberman, who emigrated to Israel from Moldova in the former USSR when he was 20, one of Israeli’s most controversial and divisive politicians, is still in evidence.
He remains unrepentant about Israel’s right to expand settlements in the West Bank, which are illegal under international law.
He declared that Arab Israeli citizens who remain in Israel must decide where their true loyalty lies – Israel or Palestine.
“They live in some kind of schizophrenia, they don’t know if they are Israeli citizens or if they are Palestinians. Even during our football games you see Palestinian flags.”
Yet, taking an unfamiliarly conciliatory tone, he admitted that it was perhaps the “mistake of leadership, of our governments - more than Arab mistakes” that has created division.
The details of the negotiations brokered by Mr Kerry have, at the American’s insistence, been kept remarkably guarded for the Middle East.
In a little noticed speech to Israeli ambassadors last weekend that first suggested at his more statesmanlike approach, Mr Lieberman said the offer supported by Mr Kerry contained “two issues important to us”.
These are likely to be Mr Kerry’s willingness to consider an Israeli or international security force in the Jordan valley on Israel’s border with Jordan, and his agreement that the Palestinians should recognise Israel as a Jewish state in a way that Israeli officials say would not exclude minorities but would prevent millions of Palestinian refugees returning.
In Israel, Mr Lieberman’s apparent shift towards the centre will be seen as partly a bid to succeed Mr Netanyahu as prime minister.
Mr Netanyahu has no obvious successor within his Likud party, which Mr Lieberman was a rising star of before forming Yisrael Beitenu (Israel Is Our Home) in 1999, a secular right-wing party aimed at capturing the votes of the growing Soviet immigrant community.
The two parties worked together in last year’s election, and Mr Lieberman’s is now the second largest in the Knesset.
At 55, he has plenty of time to become prime minister. Asked if he would like the job one day, he was reasonable to the end. “It’s speculation. It’s too early. In Israel politics, four years is like 400 years in Europe,” he said, with a handshake and a smile.