Has the Third World War already begun? According to French journalist and geo-political thinker Laurent Artur du Plessis, the answer is “Oui!” In his recent book, La Troisième Guerre mondiale a commencé (“The Third World War Has Begun”), published by Godefroy and not yet available in English, he details the reasons he believes the world is already in the opening phases of what will eventually become a war that will devastate the world with nuclear and biological weapons.
Though he bases his analysis on simple observation of the current world situation, many of his conclusions bear a striking similarity to elements of Bible prophecy contained in Daniel 11 and Revelation 13, among other chapters.
Artur du Plessis’ thesis is that the dominant geopolitical event now and in the near future will be the confrontation of the world’s two main civilizations: the Western democracies and radical Wahhabist Islam. In the first section of the book, he explains why this war of civilizations will continue.
One reason is quite simple: The opposing civilizations have underlying motivations that inexorably lead to conflict. The dominant value identifying Western civilization is individualism and liberty (p. 35). The opposing Islamic civilization, however, is based on a religion. He maintains that all religions have a “spirit” (in the sense of an “attitude”) about them, and the spirit of Islam is violence (p. 62), a violence used to expand its own domination by force.
The resulting tension and violence are already being felt around the world, in obvious places like the Middle East, but also between India and Pakistan, in Indonesia and multiple nations in Africa. Pakistan recently revealed itself as a nuclear power; if it fell to Islamic extremists, as Artur du Plessis believes it will, those extremists would have their fingers on the nuclear trigger.
The confrontation between these two civilizations, he continues in the book’s second section, will be exacerbated by a worldwide economic crash brought about by gross misuse of borrowing (what he calls in one chapter title the “crash by overdose of credit”), especially national budget deficits, oppressive taxation and financial policies that squelch productivity and impede businesses from prospering.
While this global economic meltdown would make life very difficult in the West, it will make life in the “developing world,” including almost all Islamic countries, absolutely miserable—if not impossible. As sources of financial aid dry up in the economic famine, health infrastructures in the third world, already poor in many areas, would deteriorate even further, leading to a sharp rise in disease epidemics.
Indeed, in scriptures such as Revelation 6:5-8 Revelation 6:5-8 5 And when he had opened the third seal, I heard the third beast say, Come and see. And I beheld, and see 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 middle of the four beasts say, A measure of wheat for a penny, and three measures of barley for a penny; and see you 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 to 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.
American King James Version×and Matthew 24:7 Matthew 24:7For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.
American King James Version×, the Bible does foretell that before the return of Jesus Christ, there will be a calamitous rise in famine and disease epidemics.
A modern caliph
The economic crisis, continues Artur du Plessis in the book’s third section, will propel radical Islamic groups to power in all countries of the Arab and non-Arab Islamic world. Artur du Plessis believes that out of the weak nation states of the Arab world will come one united Islamic movement, encompassing Arab and non-Arab Islamic nations.
He foresees a restoration of the caliphate, probably under a Turk. In Islam, a caliph is a leader having both supreme religious and temporal power over all Islamic nations. Having one such recognized supreme leader would allow for coordination of efforts by the whole of the Islamic world. He points to several Islamic extremist organizations rising in Muslim central Asia, groups such as the Uzbekistan Islamic Movement and the Hizh ul-Tahir “Liberation Party” that are actively seeking to build support in the Islamic world to reestablish the caliphate.
Artur du Plessis believes that it is not far-fetched to believe this could occur since “the alchemy of history suddenly propels out of anonymity exceptional people at exceptional times” (p. 235).
This rising tension between Islam and the West will also have an interesting side effect in Europe, he believes. He foresees a fervent renewal of religious sentiment and practice (p. 44). This shock of civilizations will, he thinks, propel Europe back to the Christianity of its roots.
Finally the stage will be set for a paroxysm of violence and warfare. The author foresees terror attacks against the Western democracies: chemical, biological or nuclear attacks on major ports (perhaps hiding weapons in cargo containers, whose security is very hard to guarantee); commercial airliners shot down with portable missiles; dirty bombs detonated in large cities; surprise attacks on nuclear power stations; suitcase nuclear weapons. All are within the realm of possibility and could be used by kamikazes seeking martyrdom.
Artur du Plessis concludes that the Western countries will finally use their nuclear arms as the only way to make the terrorism stop. Entire cities and even nations will be leveled. Virtually all nations in the world will be forced to take sides in this conflict. It will be the final act of a world war more devastating and horrible than any other conflagration in world history.
Interestingly, he foresees the possibility that Russia might not side with Europe, but rather with the Islamists in exchange for the possibility of some acquisitions in Europe. This would set the stage for a military conflict between Europe and Russia during the same time that Europe would be confronting the united Islamic world.
To students of Bible prophecy, much of this scenario is familiar.
Daniel 11 is a detailed prophecy about two major powers, the king of the North and the king of the South. Most of the prophecy was accurately fulfilled in ancient times by the Seleucid and Ptolemaic dynasties. Part of the prophecy remains to be fulfilled at the end time. Directions of north or south in these prophecies are in relation to the city of Jerusalem, so this king would come from somewhere north of that city. Other prophecies show that at this same time there will be a final resurrection of the Roman Empire in Europe (for more details, see our free booklet The Middle East in Bible Prophecy ). This king of the North is also the powerful politico-military leader at the head of the restored Roman Empire. He is called “the beast” in Revelation 17:11-18 Revelation 17:11-18 11 And the beast that was, and is not, even he is the eighth, and is of the seven, and goes into perdition.
12 And the ten horns which you saw are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast.
13 These have one mind, and shall give their power and strength to the beast.
14 These shall make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome them: for he is Lord of lords, and King of kings: and they that are with him are called, and chosen, and faithful.
15 And he said to me, The waters which you saw, where the whore sits, are peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues.
16 And the ten horns which you saw on the beast, these shall hate the whore, and shall make her desolate and naked, and shall eat her flesh, and burn her with fire.
17 For God has put in their hearts to fulfill his will, and to agree, and give their kingdom to the beast, until the words of God shall be fulfilled.
18 And the woman which you saw is that great city, which reigns over the kings of the earth.
American King James Version×.
Now Daniel 11:40 Daniel 11:40And at the time of the end shall the king of the south push at him: and the king of the north shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, and with horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter into the countries, and shall overflow and pass over.
American King James Version×says, “At the time of the end the king of the South shall attack him [the king of the North]; and the king of the North shall come against him like a whirlwind…” In the end time there will be a powerful military leader in Europe and another to the south of the Holy Land.
The countries generally to the south of present-day Israel include Islamic countries such as Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Yemen, Libya and Ethiopia (Ethiopia has a large Christian population, but the largest religion is still Islam). So it is very likely that the domain of the king of the South would include these areas (Egypt, Libya and Ethiopia are specifically mentioned in Daniel 11:43 Daniel 11:43But he shall have power over the treasures of gold and of silver, and over all the precious things of Egypt: and the Libyans and the Ethiopians shall be at his steps.
American King James Version×as countries conquered by the king of the North after his military attack on the king of the South).
A caliph could be just the kind of leader described as the king of the South, and as we have seen, Artur du Plessis believes that a united Arab world will indeed attack Europe, using weapons of mass destruction, and that Europe will respond militarily, eventually resorting to nuclear weapons. A nuclear or biological attack on European soil would certainly motivate a European military leader to retaliate. This is indeed what God told Daniel would happen next—that the king of the North will “come against him like a whirlwind” (verse 40).
After the northern king’s conquest of much of the Middle East, “news from the east and the north shall trouble him; therefore he shall go out with great fury to destroy and annihilate many” (Daniel 11:44 Daniel 11:44But tidings out of the east and out of the north shall trouble him: therefore he shall go forth with great fury to destroy, and utterly to make away many.
American King James Version×). As Artur du Plessis foresees, if Russia (to “the east and the north” of the Holy Land) did indeed side with a terrorist Islamic power, it would lead to conflict between Russia and Europe.
World religion and world politics combine
Revelation 17 shows the imagery of a prostitute sitting on the blasphemous “beast” that has seven heads and 10 horns. The animals or beasts in Revelation represent governments, nations or rulers, and women represent religions (see our booklet, The Book of Revelation Unveiled). This prostitute represents a false religion that will, for a time, dominate the government of “the beast” that will fight against the Lamb (Jesus Christ) at His return. Again as Artur du Plessis foresees, religion will play an important role in establishing the cohesion of the coming European power.
It must be stated that Artur du Plessis’ scenario does not completely follow the future predicted by the Bible. He believes, for example, that Europe and the United States will work together during the coming world conflagration, and that the United States will come out of the future war the big winner. This is not what the Bible predicts (to learn more about this, order our free booklet, The United States and Britain in Bible Prophecy ).
Of course, Artur du Plessis does not understand what God has revealed through Daniel, Jesus and John. It is striking to note, however, that informed people who study the current geopolitical scene are coming to conclusions that in many ways mirror what was preserved in the Scriptures thousands of years ago. This is just another chilling indication that we are very near what the Bible calls “the time of the end.” WNP