Pestilence Update

One in 10 countries have adequate protection against a ‘catastrophic’ biological event

Blog note: And great earthquakes shall be in diverse places, and famines, and pestilences; and fearful sights and great signs shall there be from heaven. (Luke 21:11). Jesus is giving a series of prophecies about what to look for as the age of grace comes to a close. This verse from Luke is one of many such prophecies from throughout the Bible. 2017 was the worst year in recorded history for the intensity, frequency, severity, duration and occurrence of a large number of severe natural disasters worldwide. Earthquakes, volcanoes, hurricanes, typhoons, cyclones, torrential flooding, unprecedented wildfires in unusual places, devastating droughts, excessive/scorching heat setting records everywhere, record snowfalls in Europe and Russia. Snow in the Arabia. This list can go on. Most studied eschatologists believe these ‘fearful sights’ and massive natural disasters are all part of the ‘CONVERGENCE’ of signs that this Biblical and prophetic age is closing. Most people who study prophecy are familiar with the routine reference(s) made that these things will be like a woman having labor pains that occur in greater severity, frequency, size and duration prior to giving birth. End of note.

Revelation 6 King James Version (KJV)

1 …  And I saw when the Lamb opened one of the seals, and I heard, as it were the noise of thunder, one of the four beasts saying, Come and see.

2 …  And I saw, and behold a white horse: and he that sat on him had a bow; and a crown was given unto him: and he went forth conquering, and to conquer.

3 …  And when he had opened the second seal, I heard the second beast say, Come and see.

4 …  And there went out another horse that was red: and power was given to him that sat thereon to take peace from the earth, and that they should kill one another: and there was given unto him a great sword.

5 …  And when he had opened the third seal, I heard the third beast say, Come and see. And I beheld, and lo a black horse; and he that sat on him had a pair of balances in his hand.

6 …  And I heard a voice in the midst of the four beasts say, A measure of wheat for a penny, and three measures of barley for a penny; and see thou hurt not the oil and the wine.

7 …  And when he had opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth beast say, Come and see.

8 …  And I looked, and behold a pale horse: and his name that sat on him was Death, and Hell followed with him. And power was given unto them over the fourth part of the earth, to kill with sword, and with hunger, and with death, and with the beasts of the earth.

War, Famine, Pestilence, Death. (Emphasis added).

One in 10 countries have adequate protection against a ‘catastrophic’ biological event

Ben Farmer. The Telegraph. November 14, 2018

Fewer than one-in-10 countries have met global standards for securing killer germs, increasing risks of an accidental disease outbreak or bioterrorism, a campaign group has warned. Just 19 countries completing a United Nations safety check have built or shown strong biosecurity safeguards. No countries meet the highest standard for biosecurity.

The lack of robust controls increases the chances of a “catastrophic” biological event, according to NTI, a campaign group tracking nuclear, biological and chemical threats.

A large scale disease outbreak is judged one of the most serious threats to both the UK and America. While a naturally occurring disease outbreak such as the 1918 flu pandemic is considered the most likely risk, security experts are also worried about the possibility of bioterrorism, or an accidental release of a microorganism from a laboratory.

Lax standards were highlighted in 2015 when it was disclosed the Pentagon had both accidentally posted live anthrax samples to dozens of laboratories. An NTI review of countries who have undertaken a World Health Organization voluntary check of their biosecurity found only 19 countries had developed or demonstrated security that meets global standards.

“When countries do not have robust systems to protect their dangerous pathogens from being stolen, from being released as a result of a laboratory accident, or from being manipulated during research absent a risk assessment, they increase the potential for a catastrophic biological event,” said Dr Beth Cameron of NTI. Dr. Cameron, a former US national security council adviser on biosecurity, said global travel, urbanisation, terrorists’ interest in weapons of mass destruction and rapid advances in genetic engineering were all adding to the threat.

“If we don’t develop biosecurity and biosafety systems at pace with these threats, we run the risk for an accidental or intentional disease outbreak that could degrade the health, economic stability, and security of our global community,” she told the Telegraph. So far 97 countries out of 196 have completed a WHO checklist to measure if nations can spot and deal with public health crises like disease outbreaks. Part of the checklist is how well countries can identify and secure harmful micro organisms in laboratories, as well as safely overseeing potentially dangerous research into them. Only 19 countries scored level three or four out of five in the assessment, showing they had developed or demonstrated capacity.

“There are likely some countries that haven’t been assessed but which that do have capability in place – however, without the assessment we won’t know,” said Ms Cameron. The UK has yet to complete the checklist, but the Department for Health said it had completed a pilot version in 2015 and been found to have “a strong baseline position”. Rapid advances in biotechnology and genetic engineering mean experimenting on and manipulating dangerous germs is no longer the preserve of top laboratories.

Hamish de Bretton-Gordon, former head of the British military’s joint chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear unit, said biosecurity was an area of “huge concern”. Many countries only paid “lip service” to biosecurity, and terrorists have always looked at biological weapons as “the ultimate weapon to cause mass casualties and terrorise millions”, he said.

“The terrorist intent is definitely there and lax standards and unscrupulous or rogue governments or organisations may be willing to sell pathogens at very high prices,” he suggested. “Having said that bio terror is not easy and there are effective medical counter measures for most bio weapons. But they are a massive psychological weapon and perfect for terrorists if they can pull it off.”

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