Watchman's Teaching Letter #224 December 2016
This is my two hundred and twenty-fourth monthly teaching letter and continues my nineteenth year of publication. I have resolved to do a series of lessons providing clarifying criticism of Howard B. Rand’s books, tracts and articles published in his Destiny Magazine, which includes several guest writers of varying degrees in excellence. Although I rate Rand and his associate writers only 50%, some of their articles are simply outstanding.
With this lesson, I will continue a critical review of a series entitled “The Book Of The Kingdom” found in Destiny magazines from January, 1949 until April, 1952 in 24 chapters, and oddly enough Rand does not identify an author. He may have written it all himself, or it might have been a team effort by him and some of his associated writers. So Rand either wrote it, or if by the help of others, at least he approved of it, and is responsible for it (and it will be edited by me):
“The Book Of The Kingdom,Destiny, March 1949:
Chapter IV of XXIV, “Joshua’s (i.e., Yahshua’s) Final Instructions”:
“Following The Conquest of the land of Palestine, six cities were appointed as cities of refuge to which a slayer who had killed a person by accident might flee and there be judged. If the slayer was found to be innocent of having committed murder, he was to reside in the city of refuge until the death of the High Priest then in office, after which he could return to his own home again. If he was adjudged guilty, he was turned over to the avenger of blood and executed. The interesting fact is that even those who accidentally killed another were deprived of their full freedom for the rest of the life of the High Priest serving the people when the accident occurred.
“‘Contrary to popular belief, the Bible does not hold life cheaply. It is a serious thing to take life, and for the taking of life the murderer forfeits his life. But those who accidentally cause the death of another are confined in a city of refuge until the death of the High Priest. In some cases this might amount to life imprisonment. Such a law certainly produced respect for life and made a man careful of the life of his fellowman. This law in operation today would reduce automobile accidents to a minimum. A driver of a car would be as careful of the life of another’s husband, wife, daughter and son as he would be of his own loved ones, for none would want to forfeit his freedom.’ (Digest of the Divine Law, pages 67-68.)
“Cities Given Levites
“After the selection of the cities of refuge, the elders of the tribe of Levi came to Eleazar the High Priest and to Joshua (i.e., Yahshua) to remind them that Yahweh had commanded, through Moses, that they receive cities to dwell in. These cities were to be taken from Israel’s inheritance throughout the land and given to them. The instructions to Moses were:
“‘Command the children of Israel, that they give unto the Levites of the inheritance of their possession cities to dwell in; and ye shall give also unto the Levites suburbs for the cities round about them. And the cities shall they have to dwell in; and the suburbs of them shall be for their cattle, and for their goods, and for all their beasts.’ (Num. 35:2-3.)
“The cities of refuge were included among the cities given to the Levites, but forty-two additional cities were given to them so they would have forty-eight cities in all, with their suburbs, as their inheritance.
“The tribe of Levi furnished the administrators, tax collectors, lawyers, doctors, etc., for all Israel. Because this tribe was active in these respective professions, they were to be scattered throughout Israel; hence the necessity of possessing cities throughout all the land as their places of abode.
“The law of inheritance and property rights causing the return of a man to his possessions at the end of fifty years was applicable to country holdings only, not to city property. City property had to be redeemed within a year after its sale, otherwise it became the property of the new purchaser forever (see Digest of the Divine Law, p. 112). The city holdings of the Levites were exempt from the operation of this law. All the city property assigned to them was redeemable by them at any time and returned to their possession in the jubilee.
“It is of interest to note that, after the appointment of the cities of refuge and the setting aside of the cities for the Levites, the account states:
“‘There failed not ought of any good thing which Yahweh had spoken unto the house of Israel; all came to pass.’ (Joshua 21:45.)
“Joshua (i.e.,Yahshua) Addresses Israel
“Many years later, after Israel had enjoyed a long rest from their enemies, Joshua (i.e., Yahshua), who had then grown old, called together all Israel with their elders and judges. Before this assembly Joshua (i.e., Yahshua) recounted the many things the Almighty had done for His people, how He had fought for them and driven their enemies out from before them. Joshua (i.e., Yahshua) reminded Israel that Yahweh had driven out before them nations much stronger than they and he admonished them that they were not to turn to the right hand or to the left. Neither were they to make references of any sort to the names of the gods of the nations around them, nor serve them:
“‘But cleave unto Yahweh your Almighty, as ye have done unto this day. For Yahweh hath driven out from before you great nations and strong: but as for you, no man hath been able to stand before you unto this day. One man of you shall chase a thousand: for Yahweh your Almighty, he it is that fighteth for you, as he hath promised you. Take good heed therefore unto yourselves, that ye love Yahweh your Almighty.’ (Joshua 23:8-11.)
“Joshua (i.e., Yahshua) warned the people that if they mingled with the remnant of the nations that remained among them and intermarried with them instead of driving them out, they would sorely regret it to the end of their days:
“‘... but they shall be snares and traps unto you, and scourges in your sides, and thorns in your eyes, until ye perish from off this good land which Yahweh your Almighty hath given you.’ (Joshua 23:13.)
“Having said that, Joshua (i.e., Yahshua) told the people he was going the way of all the earth for the day of his death was approaching. He reminded them that not one good thing which the Almighty had promised had failed. He also declared that if they trespassed against the covenant the Almighty had made with them and served other gods, the anger of Yahweh would be kindled against them. The result would be that they would perish quickly off the land which Yahweh had given to them.
“All the tribes of Israel and the elders, judges and officers presented themselves before the Almighty at Shechem. The purpose of the gathering was to take a solemn vow of faithfulness to Yahweh. Joshua (i.e., Yahshua) recited the history of the people from Abraham to his time and stressed the Divine protection and deliverance experienced by Israel up to the time they had entered and conquered the Promised Land. He then said that if they refused to serve Yahweh it would be to their own hurt:
“‘And the people said unto Joshua (i.e., Yahshua), Nay; but we will serve Yahweh.’ (Joshua 24:21.)
“Following this assertion of their fidelity to Yahweh, Joshua declared that they were now witnesses against themselves that they had definitely chosen to serve Yahweh. The people replied that they were indeed witnesses to this fact. Joshua (i.e., Yahshua) then commanded them to put away all strange gods from among them and turn to Yahweh with all their hearts in complete sincerity:
“‘And the people said unto Joshua (i.e., Yahshua), Yahweh our Almighty will we serve, and his voice will we obey.’ (Joshua 24:24.)
“A Stone Witness
“Many students of the Scriptures overlook the importance of these vows made by our forefathers. Not only did they bind themselves, but they also bound all succeeding generations of Israelites, for the Almighty will require that Israel’s posterity keep the requirements of the vows made by their forefathers. It is most interesting to note that a stone became the witness of this vow:
“‘And Joshua wrote these words in the book of the law of the Almighty, and took a great stone, and set it up there under an oak, that was by the sanctuary of Yahweh. And Joshua (i.e., Yahshua) said unto all the people, Behold, this stone shall be a witness unto us; for it hath heard all the words of Yahweh which he spake unto us: it shall be therefore a witness unto you, lest ye deny your Almighty.’ (Joshua 24:,26-27.)
“Was this stone the Stone of Jacob which was always with them? If so, it was a witness to the conversation that took place between Joshua (i.e., Yahshua) and the people and it heard the vow made by the people. This presents an interesting possibility. Will a day come when the words spoken audibly in the presence of this stone be reproduced through some sort of sensitive electrical device that will make the stone speak? We are able today to impress sound upon records and even upon a wire to be later reproduced at will. The above suggestion may not be so fantastic as some may at first thought, be led to think. The possibility of discovering a means by which inanimate objects can be made to give back to us the sounds and voices spoken within their range are not as strange to contemplate as the radio and art of flying were a century ago. What a field of discovery would open before us if vibrations impressed upon inanimate objects could be recovered and made audible again!
[Comment by Clifton A. Emahiser: Howard B. Rand’s hypothesis in the late 1940s is not out of order here, as today in 2016, one can purchase solid-state computer thumb-drives capable of storing terabytes of digital data, including video and audio intelligence, although this may not be the context of this subject.] – Back to Rand & Destiny.
“A Strange Prophecy
“The archeologist with his spade has wonderfully demonstrated the truths of Scripture. What would be the results if we could tune into a time wave length and listen to the sounds and conversations locked within the walls of ancient ruins, recorded by the rocks in whose presence they were made. It may be that Joshua (i.e., Yahshua) uttered words of strange prophetic meaning when he declared that the stone heard and recorded the vow made in its presence. Did Yahshua Christ also refer to such a future possibility when the Pharisees objected to His disciples rejoicing and praising the Almighty, saying, ‘... Blessed be the King that cometh in the name of Yahshua: peace in heaven, and glory in the highest.’ Yahshua Christ’s rebuke was:
“‘... if these [people] should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out.’ (Luke 19:40.)”
[Comment by Clifton A. Emahiser: With this last quotation, it would appear that Rand may have made an interesting observation here.] – Back to Rand & Destiny.
“It is not at all beyond possibility that Yahweh Almighty of the universe, who had given to His people the means by which they have been able to split the atom, may also place in their hands an instrument that will unlock the secrets of the past and give to us audible confirmation of the truths of history.
“In the course of Joshua’s (i.e., Yahshua’s) farewell address he referred to hornets being used of the Almighty to drive out two kings of the Amorites against whom Israel did not have to use sword or bow. Hornets are stinging insects and we have a most interesting record in modern times of such insects being used of the Almighty for the purpose of enabling Israel to come into the possession of one of the great waterways of the globe.
“Yahweh declared that the seed of Abraham would possess the gateways, or waterways, of the earth. These were promised to them as a part of their inheritance. In the words of one of the Biblical statements, they were to possess ‘the gates of their enemies.’ One of the great gateways of the world is the Panama Canal, but France commenced the construction of this waterway. Though the undertaking was condemned by the Church of Rome, the French would have continued their work of digging the canal and would have completed its construction except for the scourge of malaria which caused the death of thousands. The work ceased and the United States acquired the construction rights of the canal.”
[Critical note by Clifton A. Emahiser: The statement that the descendants of Abraham were to possess “the gates of his enemies” at Gen. 22:17 is also made at Gen. 24:60 where Bethuel and his family blessed Rebekah just before she was to leave them to become Isaac’s wife:
Gen. 22:17: “That in blessing I will bless thee [Abraham], and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore; and thy seed shall possess the gate of his enemies ....”
Gen. 24:60: “And they blessed Rebekah, and said unto her, Thou art our sister, be thou the mother of thousands of millions, and let thy seed possess the gate of those which hate them.”] – Back to Rand & Destiny.
“Yahweh uses a stinging insect to drive out a nation so that they might not come into possession of a waterway that would be a gateway between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. This was a principal gateway and it was reserved for His people Israel. It was later discovered that malaria was the result of the sting from a malaria-bearing mosquito, but this discovery did not become known until the French had abandoned their operations at Panama. Israel marched in, conquered the insect and completed the construction of the canal which is today one of the major waterways between two oceans.”
[Critical note by one of my proofreaders, Michael Nelson: “It is error to presume the French were not Israelites, and their abandonment dealt with in the autobiography of Theodore (part-kike) Roosevelt.” I will have to agree with Michael, inasmuch as it was buy-and-large the French and American Israelites, each in their own turn, who supplied the design and labor, while the Edomite-jew arranged all of their underhanded credit-bearing financing upon usury to both the France’s and the United States’ participation in the project, where France lost terribly! And it was one of the first acts by the peanut farmer and kike-loving president, Jimmy Carter, to give our hard earned Panama Canal back to Panama as a free (gratis) gift, which today is controlled by one of our enemies, China. This same kikeloving president, Jimmy Carter, shortly after Bill Clinton became president, returned to Washington to endorse the job-killing NAFTA treaty. At that meeting (Whitehouse East Room, 11-2-1993), Jimmy Baker, Secretary of State, was first to speak in favor and highly recommend NAFTA. Second to speak was the Edomite-jew, Henry Kissinger, who exclaimed how foolish it would be not to pass NAFTA. Third to speak was the peanut farmer and kike-loving ex-president, Jimmy Carter, who highly endorsed passing the NAFTA treaty. Last to speak was the shifty president, Bill Clinton, who signed NAFTA into existence, and it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out today’s rust-belt loss of millions of jobs in the USA! And while the Americans were able to overcome the severe effects of malaria, as many as 38,000 people each year were treated while the construction took place, according to Harvard University. C.A.E.] – Back to Rand & Destiny.
“The Hand of Yahweh
“In the light of Joshua’s (i.e., Yahshua’s) statement that the Almighty used a stinging insect to conquer Israel’s enemies, this modern demonstration of using such an insect to keep for His people an inheritance that had been given to them is most interesting. This is merely one among many other modern evidences of the Almighty guiding His people and bringing them into their possessions as He did of old.
“Joshua (i.e.,Yahshua) Dies
“Following the final assembly of all Israel to hear Joshua (i.e., Yahshua), when a vow of faithfulness to Yahweh was made, every man returned to his own inheritance. Soon after that Joshua (i.e., Yahshua) died at the age of one hundred and ten years. His influence upon the history of Israel was of great importance. The account states:
“‘And Israel served Yahweh all the days of Joshua (i.e., Yahshua), and all the days of the elders that overlived Joshua (i.e., Yahshua), and which had known all the works of Yahweh, that he had done for Israel.’ (Joshua 24:31.)
“Joshua (i.e.,Yahshua) Buried in Canaan
“‘This great leader in Israel was faithful to Yahweh and kept his personal vow, ‘... but as for me and my house, we will serve the Yahweh.’ (Joshua 24:15).
“Joshua was buried in the border of his inheritance. This was in Timnath-serah, which is in Mount Ephraim. The bones of Joseph, which the children of Israel brought out of Egypt, were also buried at Shechem, a fact which was recorded at the time of Joshua's (i.e., Yahshua’s) death.
“Joseph had been embalmed after his death in Egypt but before his death his brothers had taken an oath before him that when they went up out of Egypt they would carry his bones to Canaan and bury them there. This oath had its final fulfillment in Joshua’s (i.e., Yahshua’s) time. Eleazar the High Priest also died and was buried in the hill on Mount Ephraim.
“Joshua’s (i.e.,Yahshua’s) Leadership
“The history of the life of Joshua (i.e., Yahshua) is extremely interesting. In the early period of his life he was a minister to Moses and was closely associated with him. He was also one of his most trusted and valiant captains. As one of the twelve spies he brought back a good report from Canaan. Thus, with Caleb, the only other spy among the twelve to return a favorable report, he lived to lead Israel into the Promised Land. All the rest died in the wilderness. After Moses' death Joshua (i.e., Yahshua) became Israel’s leader and his campaigns in Canaan were a marvel of military strategy.
“Judah Given Leadership
“After the death of Joshua the children of Israel asked Yahweh who would lead them against the Canaanites and the tribe of Judah was appointed to provide leadership. The Record gives an account of the exploits of Judah and the other tribes as they undertook to drive out the inhabitants of the land. But Israel only partially fulfilled the command of Yahweh, for they failed to drive out all the inhabitants of the land as the Almighty had instructed them to do:
“‘And it came to pass, when Israel was strong, that they put the Canaanites to tribute, and did not utterly drive them out.’ (Judges 1:28.)
“Thorns in Their Sides
“The Record lists the tribes who failed to complete the conquest of their inheritance and reports the fact that the Angel of Yahweh came from Gilgal saying He had led Israel out of Egypt and brought them into the Promised Land. His Covenant they were not to break, nor were they to make any league with the inhabitants of the land but were to throw down their altars and drive them from the land. The Angel of Yahweh declared that because Israel had failed to obey all His commands:
“‘... I will not drive them out from before you; but they shall be as thorns in your sides, and their gods shall be a snare unto you.’ (Judges 2:3.)
“When Israel heard the words the Angel had spoken they wept. This incident took place before Joshua (i.e., Yahshua) died and no doubt led to his censuring the people for their failure to fully possess the land.
“A New Generation
“Later on a generation arose which was totally ignorant of Yahweh and the deeds He had accomplished for Israel. That generation forsook the Almighty of their fathers, went after other gods and served Baal. Because of this Yahweh was very angry with them and allowed them to be plundered and sold into the hands of their enemies until they could no longer hold their own against them. Wherever they marched Yahweh’s hand was against them, until finally they were in great affliction.
“This may be cited as a perfect example of the results that follow juvenile delinquency. A generation of young men and women, uninstructed in the ways of Yahweh or in the need of keeping His laws, turned from Him to pursue the immoral practices of the gods of the nations around them. A whole generation had turned away from all spiritual restraints with the result that they became utterly evil in the sight of Yahweh.”
[Comment by Clifton A. Emahiser: Rand speaks of how in twenty years an entire generation of young people can be corrupted. I addressed this very thing in WTLs 192, 210 and 214 where I disclosed:
“On February 9th, 1964, The Beatles, with their Edwardian suits and mop top haircuts, made their first American television appearance – LIVE – on The Ed Sullivan Show. A record setting 73 million people tuned in that evening, making it one of the seminal [i.e., relating to seed or semen – a Freudian slip?] moments in TV history. Nearly fifty years later, people still remember exactly where they were the night TheBeatles stepped onto Ed Sullivan’s stage ... [brackets mine]
“The story of how The Beatles landed on The Ed Sullivan Show began with the group’s formation in Liverpool in 1960. They spent their first couple of years playing in small clubs throughout Europe. During late night gigs in the city of Hamburg, Germany, sometimes playing as long as eight hours a night, The Beatles perfected their act. However, it was not until an appearance on the British television show, ‘Val Parnell’s Sunday Night at the London Palladium’ and the 1963 release of their first album, Please Please Me that ‘Beatlemania’ began to spread. That March the album hit number one on the British charts, and by the end of the year, The Beatles’ music permeated UK radio. The ‘Fab Four’ even performed for the royal family. It was only after this burgeoning success at home did The Beatles and their manager, Brian Epstein, choose to launch their American invasion. They decided when they had a #1 song on the U.S. charts, then they would lock in the date of their Ed Sullivan debut ....”
Up until this time every boy and girl wanted to look like, and be just like their father and mother in every respect. But after the communist hippie revolution, dad became “the old man” and mom becomean “old-fashion grouch” in total disrespect of them! It wasn’t long until using opiate drugs was the “cool thing” to do! Then, it wasn’t very long before nonwhite boys were dating White girls and spiking a beverage with opoids, and proceeded to date-rape them, committing miscegenation (i,e.,miscere-genus), bringing forth a corrupted life-form.
After this, things became morally worse and worse until now in 2016 sodomy, lesbianism, transgenderism and pedophilia are considered a legitimate way of life, and it is only a matter of time that men and women of all races will turn to having sex with animals, which has been happening in black-Africa for quite some time. Thus, things have degenerated far beyond anything Rand could have imagined in 1949. Rand does, though, in his monthly magazine, Destiny, keep his readers posted on the decline of morality and other serious developments, in his “The March Of History”, a continuing series.
I was married in 1948, and by-and-large White men and White women were marrying at that time.] – Back to Rand & Destiny.
“The continuing happiness and prosperity of a people absolutely depends upon the premise that each generation will always keep before the coming generation the great truths of the past and instruct them in the ways of Yahweh. Truth is not inherited; it is only acquired by painstaking instruction. Unless each generation is thoroughly instructed in the principles of righteousness and is well disciplined, inevitable degeneration will follow. Moral standards will be set aside and spiritual truths will be quickly forgotten.
“The Youth Problem
“The youth problem today had its counterpart in the problems of that earlier time – only a few generations removed from Joshua’s (i.e., Yahshua’s) day. Then, whole generations of people turned away from the Almighty into sin and that, too, has its parallel today. They lost all contact with Yahweh and the same causes which produced un-Yahwehliness then are producing juvenile delinquents today – young people who do not know Yahweh, who have not been told about His wonderful works. They have received too little, if any, instruction concerning the necessity to observe and obey all His laws. Instead, they have learned to prefer unrighteous practices.
“Bewildered law-enforcement officials,parents and teachers are groping for a solution to the problem, but no lasting solution will be found until the senior generations realize they failed in the first place to build Christian character upon a sure foundation. That foundation is a proper understanding of what Yahweh requires of us, keeping His laws and observing the requirements of all His commandments.” This is the end of chapter IV of “The Book Of The Kingdom.”
Not having enough space to start chapter V of “The Book Of The Kingdom”, I will present some of Rand’s “Destiny Forecast Of The News”, June 1948 until July 1949, taken from older Destiny magazines:
“DESTINY (Bulletin) for February 1932:
“‘While the trouble area is at present confined to Chinese territory, let us not lose sight of the fact that the trend is ever toward the central lands whither God has declared He will gather the armies of the world in the great controversy He has with all the nations. Whether the beginning of that final conflict arises in the East, the Far East, or in the West, the focal point toward which all ultimately will lead is centered in Palestine and at Jerusalem. God has declared this city is yet to become a cup of trembling unto all the people round about. It may be possible that the conflagration will sweep over the length and breadth of the earth before gaining the height of its intensity, or reaching its objective. But be assured it will finally come to its climax before the Holy City and in the land of Israel.’
“Communist leaders in China have now declared their intention, in case of war, of marching with Russia – whose ultimate objective is the Middle East, –Ed.”
[Comment by Clifton A. Emahiser: This is an interesting observation in 1932 by Rand, as I was only five years old at that time. It is surely true that Jerusalem has “become a cup of trembling”. It is also a fact that Jerusalem will never be built up again as it was in the times of Solomon and Zerubbabel, Jer, ch. 19. Malachi 1:4 declares:
“Whereas Edom saith, We are impoverished, but we will return and build the desolate places [i.e., Judaea & Jerusalem]; thus saith Yahweh of hosts, They shall build, but I will throw down; and they shall call them, The border of wickedness, and, The people against whom Yahweh hath indignation for ever.”]– Back to Rand
“DESTINY(Bulletin) for, April 1932:
“Would that it were possible for us to give a message of hope and cheer, of prosperity and peace, of comfort and contentment! But how can we say peace when the nation is unrepentant, having set aside God’s laws and failing in righteousness. Serious as present economic conditions are, there yet exists a far greater menace to our happiness, in the very near future, if the rapid development of unrestrained evil continues. It is useless to mince words here, for the stage is being made ready for intensification of trouble, as demoniac forces forge ahead. We must either overcome these satanic powers or be overcome. There are no half-way measures; neither can there be any truce between right and wrong. We are in a deadly conflict which will be a fight to the finish. For righteousness to compromise with hell means death. For law and order to temporize, in any degree, with the underworld is a betrayal of the trust placed, as a responsibility, in the hands of those whose sworn duty it is to protect our people from these enemies of society. Many are failing to note that a sinister shadow of lawlessness is spreading over our land, preparing the way for such a time of tribulation that the Word of God states ‘never was since there was a nation upon the earth.’
“This hardly needs comment in view of the tremendous increase in crime generally since 1932, and in juvenile delinquency particularly. –Ed.” [The sins which society begins to permit about this time are more deadly to the nation: idolatry in sports and cinema, feminism, sexual deviancy, race-mixing, etc.]
“DESTINY(Bulletin) for February 1933:
“A news item dated February 12th states, ‘Four hundred and thirty Protestant Clergymen of New York State signed a petition urging recognition of Russia’ [under Edomite-jewish Bolshevism and Communism C.A.E.]. The same article said eight hundred college professors and presidents have signed a similar petition. We are not surprised at the attitude of these professors, for many of our schools of higher learning have become hot-beds for the breeding of seditious doctrines. Though originally established to improve the minds of our boys and girls, they have developed into a distinct menace and threaten the liberty, peace and happiness of our people. What, however, can be said of these ministers who desire the recognition of a country that denies their Lord, and publicly proclaims their antagonism to all that the Christian holds dear? Were Soviet Russia able to establish their rule in this land, liberty would be gone. The true man of God would be jailed, exiled or killed. The signers of such a petition are willing to enter a league with the powers of darkness for the sake of harmony and become a party to their blasphemous utterances and deeds. Lending aid and comfort to the enemies of our race, they sacrifice principle to grasp the blood-stained hand of a monster of iniquity who has killed the innocent, trampled the Bible under foot, and is pledged to destroy the home. It is opposition to God and Christ His Son to enter into covenant relations with a nation who not only denies Him, but has declared she would pull God from His throne and destroy His worshipers. Soviet Russia is unrepentant of her bloody deeds and continues to breathe threats against His Church and His Kingdom. With them we cannot deal. Their spirit is evil and their word worthless.
“Had these ministers understood their Bibles, and comprehended the messages of the prophets, they would have recognized the impossibility,of establishing peaceful and righteous diplomatic relations with Russia. - Ed.”
My objective here is to demonstrate the mind-set of Howard B. Rand back in the early 1930s, while the Great Depression was at its height, and we were advancing toward WW II in the process.