Daniel saw the ram charging to the west, the north and the south.

I watched the ram as he charged toward the west and the north and the south. No animal could stand against him, and none could rescue from his power. He did as he pleased and became great (Dan 8:4).

Daniel was told that the Ram represents the Kings of Media and Persia (Dan 8:20). Iran was previously called Persia.

The first two of the charges of this Ram have already taken place. To the west of Iran is the nation of Iraq. In 1980 Iraq invaded Iran, and military strategists said that Iran would soon have to surrender. To their surprise the Iranian troops forced the invading army back across their border. Iran then attempted to invade Iraq and topple its Baathist socialist government of Saddam Hussein.

The nations to the north of Iran are Syria and Lebanon. There are already strong links between Iran and Syria. The war in Syria has strengthened this relationship. Iran has been fighting against the rebel forces that have been supported by the western powers. This is the fulfilment of the Ram's move to the north. Iran also supports Hezbollah, which led the resistance against Israel's invasion of Lebanon.

Daniel saw a ruler who would become great and do just as he pleases. This would be a good description of Ayatollah Khomenei. He had almost absolute power. More interesting still, Daniel says that no nation would be able to "rescue from his power". When the Islamic Revolution took place in Iran, over one hundred American hostages were held in their embassy. The United States, which is the greatest military power in the world, devised a plan called "Eagle's Claw" to rescue them.

Despite elaborate planning and the best equipment that modern technology could provide, the rescue attempt ended in disaster. Helicopters encountered unprecedented headwinds and unexpected dust storms. A helicopter crashed into a plane during refuelling in the Iranian desert and eight servicemen were killed. The United States was not strong enough to rescue its people from Iran, and had to beg for their return.

The nation to the south of Iran is Saudi Arabia. It has a significant Shia population in the areas close to Iran. The charge to the south is still in the future.

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