There are two North African nations mentioned in Ezekiel's list. The first is sometimes translated Ethiopia, but more correctly translated Cush. The ancient kingdom of Cush in Ezekiel's day was the land just south of Egypt on the Nile River.
It is often associated with Egypt: “Egypt will become a desolate wasteland. Then they will know that I am the LORD. Because you said, “The Nile is mine, I made it,” therefore I am against you and against your streams, and I will make the land of Egypt a ruin and a desolate waste from Migdol [northern Egypt] to Aswan [southern Egypt], as far as the border of Cush” (Ezekiel 29:9-10). Today the nation that occupies this land is SUDAN.
Another of Cush's defining characteristics was its RIVERS: “beyond the rivers of CUSH” (Isaiah 18:1). Because Cush bordered Egypt (Ezekiel 29:9-10), these rivers must be the rivers that feed the Nile. It is in SUDAN that 5 rivers merge to feed the Nile River to the north, which then flows directly into the southern border of Egypt. The only legitimate identification of CUSH, then, is the modern nation of SUDAN, known officially since 1989 as the Islamic Republic of Sudan.
Cush is translated Ethiopia 21 times in the KJV, which is somewhat misleading. Cush was the first son of Ham, one of the sons of Noah. Dr Gesenius tells us, the Cushites migrated first to the Arabian peninsula and then across the Red Sea to the area south of Egypt. The ancient Ethiopians may well include Cushites, but they do not represent all of them. Thus CUSH today is primarily SUDAN.
One of the amazing things about Ezekiel 38 is that God placed Persia and Cush right next to each other 2,600 years ago as end-time allies against Israel (v5), and today Iran and Sudan have a very close relationship. Sudan is Iran's best ally.
Iran supplies Sudan with military supplies, oil and military training, and Sudan gives Iran docking rights at Port Sudan on Red Sea shipping routes. This connection is setting the stage for the Invasion.
On June 30, 1989, General Omar Hassan al-Bashir mounted a successful military coup d'état in Sudan. However, the real power behind the new regime was Hassan al-Turabi and his extremist party, the National Islamic Front (NIF). Sudan was immediately and totally converted into an Islamic military dictatorship. Sudan supported Iraq during the Gulf War, gave refuge to Osama bin Laden (1991-1996) and became a rallying place for every hard-line Islamic movement imaginable. In 1991 al-Turabi, along with leaders from about 50 hard-line Islamic movements, founded the Popular Arab and Islamic Conference (PAIC). His intent was to crystallise all the hard-line Islamic militants and nationalists under a single banner. Some have called Sudan “terrorism's new Mecca.”
Madeleine Albright called Sudan “a viper's nest of terrorism.”
The Sudanese government is Islamist to its core and an absolute cesspool of Islamic oppression toward Sudan's Christian minority. The genocide being perpetrated in Darfur is well-known. As Mark Hitchcock says, “One would be hard pressed to find a more rabid enemy of Israel and the West today than Sudan.”
It is easy to see that Islamic Sudan would not hesitate to join Iran and Russia in this Invasion aimed at overwhelming and destroying Israel.