Iraq War Update

By Mark Lerner


Dateline: April 1, 2003, 11:59PM PST, Eugene, OR -- The new war in Iraq nears the two-week mark and vast controversies swirl around the globe. The worldwide peace movement remains strong with many calls for a cease-fire. Well-known TV journalist Peter Arnett -- clearly someone who has personal views against the war -- was just fired by NBC News and National Geographic magazine for giving an interview on Iraqi TV that suggested America was changing its war plans due to fierce Iraqi resistance. In essence, he gave away his left-wing views to the "enemy," then apologized on the Today show, was first supported by his sponsors, then fired, and almost immediately hired by the anti-war Daily Mirror of London. The USA Pentagon, Defense Secretary Rumsfeld and Executive branch of government insist the military aspects of the war are going according to schedule -- as tens of thousands of coalition forces now approach Baghdad, which is encircled. There have been numerous incidents of soldier deaths by friendly fire, errant missiles fired into Syria/Iran/Turkey, the first homicide/suicide bombing that killed four U.S. Marines, major destruction of palaces and key governmental/communication facilities in Baghdad, POWs taken and possibly executed by the Iraqis, and many innocent civilians killed (some by extremist Iraqis who fervently support Saddam Hussein and some by coalition troops).

Numerous questions fill the mind of humanity as April 2003 begins. Is Saddam Hussein alive or dead? Anyone who has watched the news reports consistently during the past two weeks (and I have done that) comes away sensing he was either killed at the first bombardment or seriously injured. All of his television appearances seem to be from tapes made before the initial shelling into Baghdad that started the war. Perhaps we will learn more about his fate at the crucial Aries Full Moon. [More about this key lunation shortly.] Other big questions include: Will the Muslim/Arab world rise up with increased suicide attacks against the West and Israel? Will Al Qaeda attempt more dangerous missions against America and Western interests around the world? Will the war last for a few more weeks or several months? Might the Elite Republican Guard troops defending Baghdad use chemical or biological weapons they have said they don't have? Will coalition troops ever discover the weapons of mass destruction we said Saddam Hussein was hiding? Will we really see the happy faces of liberated Iraqis in the streets of major cities in this war-torn country? Will the occupation of Iraq following the war drag on for years and be filled with violence? Can a country like Iraq really be turned into a democracy? Will the nuclear/military standoff on the Korean Peninsula turn deadly in the near future while America is so focused on defeating Saddam Hussein? Will the traditional Western Alliance be reunited following the conclusion of the war? How will America's bold and unilateral-type action (outside of UN support) in Iraq affect other nations like China (and its interests relative to Taiwan), Russia (and Chechnya), India and Pakistan (relative to Kashmir)? There are dozens of other questions, but these seem to be at the top of the list.

Right now my job is to offer you six additional astrology charts to help you understand the overall situation regarding the Iraq war. [See Parts XIII to XVI of this series for a large number of horoscopes focused on this subject.] These maps will assist you with Mundane Astrology research and analysis during the coming month. A future article will present the New and Full Moons of May -- two of which are potent eclipses.

To View the Equinox chart for America, click on the following link:

To View the Equinox chart for Iraq, click on the following link:


To View the Aries New Moon chart for America, click on this link:

To View the Aries New Moon chart for Iraq, click on this link:

To View the Aries Full Moon chart for America, click on this link:

To View the Aries Full Moon chart for Iraq, click on this link:


In our modern understanding of Mundane Astrology, key charts are always those for Equinoxes or Solstices (the birthing points for each season) and New and Full Moons (the initiating and climaxing moments of the solar-lunar cycle that lasts approximately for 29 1/2 days). When we have a war -- in this case, it is primarily America vs. Iraq -- one calculates the particular horoscopes for Washington, D.C. and Baghdad. [If you are living in the U.K., then one calculates the maps for London.]

Here are some tips and suggestions while you study the above six astrology charts. The Vernal Equinox maps are important because they last for three months and the war began less than one day before the Equinox. Amazingly, in the USA-based map, the rising degree of 21+ Libra almost conjuncts the Moon at the moment the war began (22+ Libra) while the transiting Moon at the Equinox (6+ Scorpio) is virtually on the Ascendant of the war chart calculated for Washington, D.C. Like the war chart in the USA as the Equinox occurred in Washington, D.C., Jupiter -- America's ruling planet -- is once again elevated and the precise degree at the Midheaven during the Equinox (24+ Cancer) is America's natal Mercury placement (24+ Cancer) from July 4, 1776. Mercury rules the media, communications, transportation and journalists. Notice Saturn in the 9th house in this chart. The 9th house in Mundane Astrology connects with international affairs. This seems to represent the shadow side of our military thrust into Iraq. The perception in a large part of the globe is that America has made a great mistake and that this military action will come back to haunt us. Pluto sits virtually precisely on the 3rd house cusp in this Equinox chart for America. Anyone who has watched CNN, MSNBC and the Fox News channel (all Cable Networks) over the last two weeks will be astounded by the 24-hour-a-day coverage of the Iraq War. It would appear that almost nothing else is happening on Planet Earth! I see this as the connection of Pluto (obsession; extremes) on the 3rd house cusp (ruling the media) and that this Pluto was also virtually stationary as the war began and the Equinox occurred. And the fact that the U.S./British coalition military has allowed "imbedded reporters" to be a vital part of all the troop movements has perhaps co-opted the American TV-Networks into almost universally supporting the war effort. [Note: When the war began -- see Part XVI and the horoscope based in Washington, D.C. -- Neptune in Aquarius was close to the 4th house cusp. Neptune is probably the major planet ruling television as a universal medium of communication. The 4th house represents our homes, living rooms, the emotional depths of the public. Someday, this war may be deemed "The Television War."] Venus rules the Equinox chart for America (as Libra is rising) and Venus is almost exactly trine the rising degree. This may mean that America will eventually win some kind of peace in and for Iraq. Along with Saturn in Gemini, Venus and the Ascendant form a Grand Triangle in air (communication) signs. Notice the Sun-Mercury conjunction in the 6th house at the Equinox for Washington, D.C. In the traditional rules for Mudane Astrology, one of the meanings of the 6th house is the "armed forces."

When looking at the same Equinox map for Baghdad, the most salient feature is Neptune rising in Aquarius -- within 2 degrees of the Ascendant. This amplifies what I just said about the televising of this war to Americans and to people all around the world. Neptune equates with television and Aquarius connects to universality -- including the amazing use of graphics, satellite feeds, live broadcasts from the American military center hidden away in Qatar in the Middle East, visions of Baghdad being hit by rockets and bombs during the night and early morning hours. [Note: In my special article on Neptune's Power, I pointed out -- before the war started -- why Neptune is so potent at this crucial turning point of history.] Neptune rising in the Equinox chart for Baghdad also represents the inherent nebulosity and confusion within Saddam Hussein's administration and armed forces. If he has been killed or injured, this would explain the chaos happening in his military approaches and strange appearances on Iraqi television. Neptune rising in Baghdad connects to the wide range of sympathy and compassion that is felt in many nations for the millions of Iraqi civilians caught in the crossfire between militant Iraqi troops and the invading coalition forces. If chemical or biological weapons are used in this war, it will also strongly link with Neptune rising in the Equinox map for Baghdad. The Sun-Mercury conjunction in the 2nd house of this chart reveals the huge financial cost happening over the next three months and what this will mean for America and Iraq in the future.

What appears most disturbing in the Aries New Moon charts of April 1 is that Mars and Chiron are exactly together. This union only occurs about every two years. Mars = war, bloodshed and violence. Chiron = healing, bridge-building and spiritual enlightenment. In a personal chart or transit, this could refer to doing one of the forms of yoga or becoming involved in the "martial arts" (like karate, judo, aikido, etc). However, the shadow side is the juxtaposition of violence/anger/brutality in the midst of the desire for healing. Perhaps this unusual conjunction of Mars and Chiron represents the tragedy and ache that the world feels in seeing this frightening new version of high-tech warfare. Notice the Sun and Moon in the 8th house of death, transformation, metamorphosis and mysteries in the New Moon horoscope based in Washington, D.C. The chart for Baghdad reveals Saturn close to the 8th house cusp and certainly thousands of Iraqis are dying now -- whether in their armed forces or in the towns and cities. Uranus in the 3rd house closely squares the rising and setting degrees in the New Moon chart for Iraq. In this sense, Uranus plays the role of revolution, rebellion, shock waves, regime change, unpredictability, air and missile strikes against the government. Back in the New Moon chart for Washington, D.C., notice Juno in Scorpio near the 4th house cusp and squaring the horizon. Juno can equate with empowerment or disempowerment in key relationships and -- especially -- rage in those who feel disenfranchised. This is a strong symbol of the vocal minority in our nation who are literally outraged by this war and want it to stop because it could result in World War III and future disasters for America -- at home and in the world.

When we reach the Aries-Libra Full Moon charts for April 16, we are stunned by the symbolism: There is a T-Square triangle with the Sun at 26+ Aries opposite the Moon at 26+ Libra and both exactly squared by Mars at 26+ Capricorn! As I mentioned in the previous parts in this series, this pattern is an extraordinary archetype for what is happening in Iraq because the red planet Mars is a major link to war and violence. Saddam Hussein (born April 28, 1937) has his natal Jupiter at 26+ Capricorn and Pluto at 26+ Cancer. Secretary of State Colin Powell (born April 5, 1937) has Jupiter at 25+ Capricorn and Pluto at 26+ Cancer. President Bush (born July 6, 1946) has Saturn at 26+ Cancer. All three men are directly in the spotlight as this Shamballa Festival, Full Moon strikes humanity and Planet Earth. The "Will of God" energy that is annually released at this time is having a very focused effect on these three individuals. In addition, this Full Moon ignites America's natal Pluto (27+ Capricorn) -- in our national 2nd house of money, national assets and resources. One of the biggest issues coming up is the staggering cost of this war -- an amount that eventually could affect the outcome of the next presidential election in 2004 and the senate/congressional races as well. Like the Aries New Moon chart for America, the Sun at the Aries Full Moon is in the 8th house of death and kindred themes. In the Aries Full Moon chart for Baghdad, Pluto in Sagittarius is rising within 2 degrees of the Ascendant! Does this represent the final destruction of the Saddam Hussein regime and the beginning discoveries of caches of weapons of mass destruction? Let us all hope and pray that this Full Moon time doesn't bring with it waves of catastrophe that are feared by many of the prophets of doom and gloom. Pluto has a strong connection with the First Ray of Will, Purpose and Power -- the Creator and Destroyer Archetypes. [Note: The 7 Rays are discussed in many books containing information on esoteric wisdom.]

In closing this time, I want to mention some stations and ingresses of planets in the near future that will surely impact on the Iraq war. Jupiter turns direct at 8+ Leo in just two days -- on April 3-4, 2003. Jupiter will then remain in forward motion until January 3, 2004 -- when it will stop again and turn retrograde at 18 degrees and 54 minutes of Virgo. This station by Jupiter near the beginning of 2004 is just 3 minutes from the Sun placement at the September 11, 2001 plane crashes into the World Trade Center! Since Jupiter always represents something BIG (as it is the largest planet in the solar system), might we expect a renewed, giant attack against the West by Al Qaeda at the end of 2003 and the beginning of 2004? While Jupiter is often a positive, upbeat energy connected to success, it doesn't have to play that role and Jupiter is also a strong symbol for America. Mercury makes its next retrograde station on April 26 at 20+ Taurus. It remains in reverse until May 20 when it turns stationary direct at 11+ Taurus. Neptune makes a retrograde station on May 15-16, 2003 at 13+ Aquarius. This occurs right at the potent Taurus Full Moon -- the Buddha, Wesak Festival and, this year, a Total Lunar Eclipse. This Full Moon is always considered in esoteric circles the "high spiritual moment" of the year and in 2003 the forces of divine illumination will be enhanced to the maximum by thousands of group meditations going on throughout the globe. Saturn enters Cancer for the next two years (approximately) on June 3-4, 2003. This will have a profound effect (probably negatively) on America and President Bush -- both with Sun-signs in Cancer. Finally, Uranus makes a retrograde station on June 7, 2003 at 2 degrees and 49 minutes of Pisces. This exactly (no orb!) ignites Jupiter's direct station at 2 degrees and 49 minutes of Pisces from October 29, 1962 -- when the Cuban Missile Crisis ended successfully over 40 years ago due to astute communications between members of the Kennedy Administration and representatives from the Soviet Union. This does not seem to be a mere coincidence, but a reminder that the fate of the world may rest with the actions of great powers/leaders (and those people and groups that are smaller, but no less significant) in the weeks and few months ahead. Stay tuned to this web channel for late-breaking stories and more astrological analysis of key world events as they occur.

© 2003 by Great Bear Enterprises, Ltd and Mark Lerner. All rights reserved.

[Mark Lerner is the publisher of Welcome to Planet Earth. Please reach him at PO Box 12007, Eugene OR 97440 or via e-mail at You can also utilize the following link in order to visit the Index Page of our astrology web site. Mark has been doing professional astrology consultations for 30 years on 90-minute cassette tapes. For more on his sessions, see the section entitled New! Special Offer on Consultations and 2003 Calendars on the Index page of our astrology web site.]