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Russian Call for Four-Power Strategic Dialogue, U.S.-Russia-India-China

June 21 (EIRNS) — Andrey Shushentsov, Program Director of the Valdai Discussion Club and Director of the Institute of International Studies at MGIMO University, argues in a short essay published on the Valdai Club website that a strategic dialogue among the United States, Russia, China and India is necessary to prevent the current state of affairs from devolving into open conflict. However, Shushentsov limits himself to the necessity of preventing the geopolitical confrontations now in play from turning into military conflict without ever mentioning the positive potential of those four powers to create a new world credit system as defined by Lyndon LaRouche in 2009.

“In a chaotic environment, the leading powers seek to secure themselves a privileged position in the international system and limit the opportunities for their key competitors,” Shushentsov writes. He notes in the first part of the essay that these four countries are the most powerful nuclear powers and have four of the world’s six largest economies. He notes further the strategic competition between America and Russia, between America and China–including the U.S. effort to rope India into the “Quad” vs China, and the positive relations between Russia and India. “Unprovoked crises or spontaneous episodes of conflict in relations within the Big Four nuclear powers can disrupt progressive global economic processes,” he writes further. “In this regard, these four powers should be mutually attentive and prudent, channeling their rivalry into a non-military area.”

Therefore, Shushentsov writes, “It is the responsibility of the expert community of the four countries to carefully study the train of thought of their competing partners in order to exclude the sudden development of a conflict. In this regard, it seems reasonable to create a permanent format for consultation among the high-level experts of Russia, the USA, China and India. To ensure that mutual deterrence does not lead to strategic disruptions and war, it is necessary to manage relations, emphasizing an interest in cooperation with respect to common areas, such as climate, the ecology, digital development, space, mining, demography, migration and counteracting natural disasters. The purpose of the high-level consultations is to prevent a shift from strategic containment to impulsive attempts to break the emerging status quo,” 

He concludes. “The formation of a stable dialogue format for the four leading global powers in the 21st Century will make it possible to minimize the likelihood of an impulsive breakdown into open conflict, the potential for which remains a factor in global politics.”


NSA’s Jake Sullivan: Biden and Xi Jinping to Confer Soon

June 18 (EIRNS)–NSA Jake Sullivan was emphatic at his Thursday on-the-record call with reporters that Biden would follow up on his summit with Vladimir Putin, with a discussion with China’s Xi Jinping. The White House transcript stated, “[T]he notion that President Biden will engage in the coming month with President Xi in some way to take stock of where we are in the relationship and to ensure that we have that kind of direct communication that we found valuable with President Putin yesterday, we’re very much committed to that. It’s now just a question of when and how.”

The bulk of his press conference was to report how successful Biden had been on his European trip, basically, that he’s taken leadership of the West with his B3W–Build Back Better World, “a new infrastructure initiative… that will be a high-standards, transparent, climate-friendly alternative to the Belt Road Initiative.” He has NATO sold on “tackling China… for the first time, truly taking the security challenge posed by China seriously… and standing up to, countering and pushing back on China’s non-market economic practices…” With no irony intended, he described how governments supervising a deal between Airbus and Boeing (with agreements on investments and tariffs) so as to curtail China’s large passenger aircraft industry, is an example of the ending of “non-market economic practices.”

Sullivan described how pulling together such a Western alliance means that one can deal with Russia as a “principled engagement” – presumably, making our values clear to the opponent while identifying areas to work together. The question was posed: After Russia, does that mean “you can go on to a bilateral discussion with President XI and how’re you taking that on”?

Sullivan then elaborated: “[W]hat the President said, about there being no substitute for leader-level dialogue as a central part of why he held the summit with Putin yesterday, also applies to China and to President Xi Jinping. He will look for opportunities to engage with President XI going forward. We don’t have any particular plans at the moment, but I would note that both leaders are likely to be at the G20 in Italy in October…[W]e will sit down to work out the right modality for the two presidents to engage.” He referred to two modalities – possibly by phone or by a side-meeting at an international meeting – and then, or “something else.” Sullivan’s briefing remarks are here.

At a follow-up press conference on Thursday with the State Department’s Ned Price, Robert Delaney, the Washington DC reporter for the South China Morning Post, referred to Sullivan’s announcement and brought up the previous roadblocks (the Uyghurs in Xinjiang, the Wuhan lab and the coronavirus, and such). Price referred back to Sullivan’s explanation and then reaffirmed the “principled engagement” line.


Another Advance Toward Fusion Power in China’s EAST Tokamak

A record combination of high temperature and long duration of confinement of a fusion plasma has been achieved by China’s primary fusion power experiment, known as the experimental advanced superconducting tokamak, or EAST.


{Daily Pakistan} reported on May 29, “China’s artificial sun [has set] a new world record as it achieved a plasma temperature of 120 million degrees Celsius for a period of 101 seconds. The huge accomplishment is a key step toward the test running of a fusion reactor. Announced by Gong Xianzu, who is a researcher at the Institute of Plasma Physics of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (ASIPP), [who] was in charge of the experiment conducted in Hefei, capital of East China’s Anhui Province.”


The EAST experiment took a full year to prepare; and in another run, this Chinese prototype of an “artificial sun,” reached an even higher plasma temperature, 160 million degrees Celsius, and sustained it for 20 seconds. These temperatures are high enough and sustained long enough for deuterium-tritium ions in the plasma to fuse and produce energy, if the superhot plasma can be stably confined with less energy input than the output from the fusion reactions. This requires the third parameter — sustained, much higher plasma density than has thus far been reached in tokamaks.


“It’s a huge achievement in China’s physics and engineering fields,” the paper quoted ASIPP Director Song Yuntao. “The experiment’s success lays the foundation for China to build its own nuclear fusion energy station.”


China Launches Tianzhou Cargo Ship Which Docks With the Space Station

China launched the cargo spacecraft Tianzhou-2 on Saturday, May 29, which has docked with the space station core module Tianhe. It delivered supplies for the first crew, equipment, and propellant. The Long March-7 Y3 rocket, carrying Tianzhou-2, blasted off from the Wenchang Spacecraft Launch Site at 8:55 p.m. (Beijing Time), according to the China Manned Space Agency (CMSA). The launch was a complete success, the CMSA said.

The cargo includes more than 160 large and small packages, including supplies for astronauts, space-science equipment, and two tons of propellant, which are needed to keep the station in a stable orbit. After docking with Tianhe, Tianzhou-2 will replenish Tianhe’s propellant and help test equipment for space application projects.

Three astronauts will be launched on the Shenzhou-12 mission, and will stay in orbit for three months. It will be their job to unpack the goods stowed inside Tianzhou-2. In addition to supplies for the three-astronaut first crew, the gear delivered by Tianzhou-2 also includes two spacesuits for extravehicular activities, each weighing more than 100 kg, which will be needed on future “space walks.” This year, two manned craft will dock with the station.

Tianzhou-2 is also delivering space food, dubbed “space deliveries” by Chinese engineers, including many traditional Chinese dishes. From staple foods to non-staples, from meat to vegetables, the menu is appetizing for Chinese astronauts. Famous stir-fried Chinese dishes like shredded pork with garlic sauce and Kung Pao chicken are both on the menu. (The menu may be an added inducement for non-Chinese astronauts to visit the station.)

Later this year, another cargo vessel will dock with the station, as will a second manned mission. In 2022, the station will be complete, with the addition of the Wentian and Mengtian laboratory modules.

Then it will be open for other countries to send their experiments, their astronauts, or even their entire laboratories, to this truly international space station.


Argentina to Sign MOU Joining the Belt and Road Initiative As Soon As Possible

Argentina Ready to Sign MOU on Joining the Belt and Road Initiative As Soon As Possible

May 28 (EIRNS)–In a lengthy interview with the Spanish-language edition of China Today published May 18, Argentine Ambassador to China, Sabino Vaca Narvaja, underscored that while President Alberto Fernandez was unable to travel to China in early May to sign a Memorandum of Understanding to join the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), he is absolutely committed to doing this as soon as conditions permit him to travel, or alternatively, to sign the MOU virtually during this year’s biannual Belt and Road Forum.

Vaca Narvaja, who is an expert on China, noted that of course Argentina seeks to maintain a positive, “mature” relationship with the Biden administration, but pointed out that China is Argentina’s “main investor and financier.” China’s strict protocol for quarantining foreign visitors makes it difficult for the President to travel right now, because of the time this would involve, but, he continued, “it’s an option to sign the MOU for the Belt and Road if the President’s trip is put off much longer. We want to sign it as soon as possible because we already announced it, and because our government’s decision is to deepen even further its relations with China.” The bilateral relationship “is central for our President,” he said. “China is one of the countries at the top of his travel agenda.”

China and Argentina, he said, are about to renew a five-year development perspective including 16 to 20 development projects worth $30 billion, to be presented soon to China’s National Development and Reform Commission and to the Argentine Foreign and Finance ministries.. Those projects include railroad construction, telecommunications, energy–including a new nuclear plant with China’s Hualong technology–science and technology, “everything that has to do with bioceanic corridors…and working on the possibility of improving our rail lines and highways to have access to both the Atlantic and Pacific.” In this context, he emphasized the necessity of Latin America forging its own economic integration, having a long term development perspective just as China does, and pointed to ASEAN and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) as examples of Asian integration. “If we don’t integrate and begin to think on a level of scale, our relationship will be more difficult,” he warned.

“China is a sufficiently large market for us to think about a continental strategy and this must be a policy of state for our governments,” he insisted. ”Our relationship with China should be an excuse to work for the long term in the region.” Latin America, he said, “should have its own Belt and Road and its own infrastructure plan linked to [China’s] Belt and Road Initiative.” China’s economy and those of Latin American nations are complementary, so, he emphasized, “we have a lot of potential for joint development and the Belt and Road Initiative is the most ambitious infrastructure plan for humanity.”


“China Speed” in the Vaccination Effort

“China Speed” in the Vaccination Effort

May 27, 2021 (EIRNS) – China has administered over 500 million doses of COVID vaccines as of May 23, according to a report in the May 26 Xinhua headlined “`China speed’ of vaccination highlights determination to beat COVID-19.” The first 100 million doses were administered as of March 27. Xinhua commented:

“Such stepped-up moves have once again demonstrated China’s strong mobilization ability, which has been proven by the country’s response to the virus since the outbreak of the epidemic… China’s vaccination speed has potential to further accelerate.” The article went on to restate the official policy:

“No one is safe until everyone is safe. Human society must ensure that the speed of COVID-19 vaccination is faster than the pace of mutation. The challenge of realizing herd immunity for the world’s most populous country is obvious, but the `China speed’ of vaccination has lit the light at the end of the tunnel. Until a final victory over the virus is secured, China will not stop its efforts to make contributions to the battle against COVID-19.”


Forget Geopolitics: Save Lives With Vaccines, Ibero-American Experts Tell Atlantic Council

Forget Geopolitics, Save Lives With Vaccines, Ibero-American Experts Tell Atlantic Council

May 26 (EIRNS)—On May 24, the Atlantic Council sponsored a webinar “The Race to Vaccinate: Chinese Vaccines in Latin America and the Caribbean,” including Guyana’s Health Minister Dr. Frank Anthony as its special guest, and a panel of three commentators including Chile’s former ambassador to China, Jorge Heine, epidemiologist Dr. Jennifer Bouey of the RAND Corporation, and Ernesto Londoño, the New York Times correspondent in Brazil. Although the Atlantic Council has eagerly participated in the recent media and think tank rug-chewing about China’s vaccines being just a “cynical” political maneuver to increase its influence In Latin America and the Caribbean, moderator Pepe Zhang had to handle the discussion in an even-handed way—unable to directly challenge the reality that China’s vaccines are savings lives in the region, while the U.S. is absent.

That point was driven home in spades in response to one of Zhang’s carefully-constructed questions, about whether China’s “vaccine diplomacy” represents “a new avenue for engagement” in the region. Ambassador Heine quickly dispensed with the narrative coming from Western media and Washington think tanks that China is using its vaccines for political leverage and “domination,” stating that the issue here is timing. Chinese vaccines come “now” to Latin America whereas the U.S. and European countries are hoarding and talking about 2022 or 2023. That’s no good, he said, describing as absurd the discussion in the Western media comparing the efficacy of the Pfizer vaccine to China’s Sinopharm, whose efficacy is reportedly 70%. “This is rich country club talk,” he pronounced. The perception of Chinese vaccines in the region is very high, Heine added. Latin America is “ground zero” for COVID cases and deaths, and how the crisis is handled “will be remembered for a very long time,” he warned. So, the U.S. should get going, and start providing vaccines fast.

While initially offering a factual report on the situation in Guyana and the surrounding region, Dr. Anthony made the same point. China had donated large quantities of PPE and lab equipment as well as 20,000 doses of Sinopharm vaccine. (Anglo-American media lie that China never donates anything. India donated 800,000 doses. USAID offered a grant, “but no vaccines.” The situation in the region is now critical, he warned, with a surge in cases and deaths in Jamaica, Barbados and Trinidad & Tobago. Guyana and the region have also been driven into deep economic crises. The bottom line, he said, is that there aren’t enough vaccines. That is the case across the Caribbean, he underscored, where vaccination rates are extremely low. He pointed out that it’s easier to store Sinopharm vaccines because they don’t require the same cold-chain capacity as Pfizer. President Biden has donated 4,000 doses of AstraZeneca vaccines to Mexico and Canada and is offering Southeast Asia more, but, Dr. Anthony added, “we’re in the U.S.’s backyard, and with more vaccines, we can change the situation.”

Even the New York Times correspondent, Ernesto Londoño, noted that while the U.S. warns that dealing with China “comes at a price,” the reality is that China responded to many countries in their “hour of need…they showed up first and scaled a victory,” while the U.S. was hoarding vaccines. And when asked whether there were “geopolitical competition” between China and the U.S. in the region, the RAND Corporation’s Dr. Jennifer Bouey, a Chinese-American epidemiologist who has extensive experience working in China, responded that the current situation could offer an opportunity for the U.S. and China to work together, as they had done in the past, collaborating on SARS, Avian flu, and Ebola to “build a public good.” So, she said, the precedent is there. In concluding, Zhang asked each participant to express a final message, to which Heine said: Get U.S. vaccines to Latin America ASAP; Londoño, in the face of enormous loss, help must come soon; Anthony: get the vaccines in ASAP. Dr. Bouey: U.S., Chinese and Latin American scientists can work together in resolving the crisis.


Putin and Xi Jointly Launch Construction of Four Nuclear Plants in China, Emphasize “Innovation-Based Development”

May 20, 2021 (EIRNS) – The presidents of Russia and China, Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping, both participated in a videoconference hookup yesterday to launch the beginning of construction of four new nuclear plants in China, based on Russian technology. These are two units each at the Tianwan nuclear power plant in the city of Lianyungang, and at the Xudapu nuclear plant in Huludao district in northeastern China.

The two presidents chose to make this a major policy-shaping occasion for their two countries, as well as one globally focused on the role of innovation and scientific and technological cooperation in achieving development. “It is necessary to strive for innovation-based development and to strengthen scientific and technical cooperation in the nuclear sphere,” Xi Jinping stated, reiterating that the two countries had agreed “to make a sizable intellectual contribution to the innovation-driven development of the global nuclear sphere.” The Chinese president asserted that “our countries have been providing each other with solid support and have been engaged in close and effective cooperation” in many areas, and that “energy has always been the biggest and most successful branch in our practical cooperation while nuclear energy cooperation has been its strategic priority. We are jointly upgrading our cooperation in this area and have already put into operation a host of major projects.”

Through their joint work, Russia and China will “make a sizable contribution to the global development of nuclear energy,” Xi stated.

Putin responded by effusively greeting “President Xi Jinping, my dear friend,” emphasizing that “Russian and Chinese specialists are working on this flagship joint project which is truly a milestone. They are building powerful, modern Russian-designed nuclear reactors that meet all safety and environmental standards. It is planned that they will start operating as soon as in 2026–2028, which, as President Xi just said, will be a solid contribution to China’s energy security.”

Putin emphasized “Russia’s unique high technology capabilities in industrial production,” adding that “President Xi and I determined the main areas of our genuinely close partnership, the cooperation between Russia and China on nuclear technology, during my state visit to China in 2018… It can be said that Russia-China relations have reached their highest level in history.”

The Russian President then stated: “Returning to the topic of nuclear energy cooperation, I would like to note, with great satisfaction, that all the agreements reached at the highest level are being consistently and unfailingly fulfilled. In addition to the construction of new power units at the Tianwan and Xudapu nuclear power plants, there are many other large Russian-Chinese initiatives that have been and are being implemented. These initiatives include an experimental fast neutron reactor built in China with Russia’s participation… Russia also supplied China with radionuclide heating blocks for the spacecraft that was the first in history to land on the far side of the Moon in 2019. We were extremely happy about your success, dear Chinese friends.”

“I am convinced that Russia and China will have many more ambitious and successful projects together. We are ready to develop our cooperation in the construction of nuclear power plants, and innovative partnership in the development and implementation of low-carbon and other technologies.”

China’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian said that the project is the biggest China-Russia nuclear energy cooperation project to date.


Facing U.S. Sanctions Threat, El Salvador Turns to China and Russia for Support For Its Sovereign Development

May 20, 2021—All over the world, nations are beginning to recognize that an alternative to the dying Old Order of geopolitics, colonialism, and usury is coming into being, with sovereign nations joining together for mutual development. Central America is no exception to this process.

“We are very enthusiastic about strengthening the relationship with Russia, we are facing a world with new challenges and opportunities, and we want to take advantage of those opportunities,” Salvadoran President Nayib Bukele told Russian Ambassador Alexander Khokholikov yesterday, in receiving the new Ambassador’s credentials. Bukele noted that El Salvador recognizes “the importance of Russia in the world.” Khokholikov responded in the same spirit, assuring him that the Russian government also wishes to increase cooperation. “We are going to work bilaterally and multilaterally,” he said, “because that is how it should be to maximize mutual benefit, both of Russia and El Salvador.”

Today China’s Embassy in El Salvador issued an important communiqué, reiterating that the agreement signed with El Salvador for China to oversee the construction of four development projects requested by the Salvadoran government spells out that China is covering the costs of the projects. President Bukele immediately posted the communiqué to his Twitter, much followed by others in the region, as well as Salvadorans at home and abroad.  

The Biden administration, which has supplied neither vaccines nor economic development aid to the region, is publicly threatening to overthrow the governments of El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras if they break with the old order.

This is being done in the name of “fighting corruption” in Central America. The State Department included in its list of corrupt officials in those countries which it released on Tuesday, for example, two top Bukele administration officials: the President’s Chief of Cabinet, Carolina Recinos, and Minister of Security and Justice Rogelio Rivas. The charges are preposterous: Recinos is accused of engaging in “significant acts of corruption during her term in office” (no further details), while Rivas’s alleged “significant acts of corruption” were supposedly that he “awarded his own private construction company several noncompetitive and unadvertised contracts to build police stations and other buildings that fall under his official capacity and inflated the cost of materials.”

American Democratic Congresswoman Norma Torres, head of the Central American Caucus in the House of Representatives and a close ally of Vice President Kamala Harris, proclaimed on Tuesday as she released the list: “I will be relentless in demanding accountability from our government – if we know someone is corrupt, I expect our government to use all levers at our disposal, including sanctions, visa restrictions, withholding support to deter future acts of corruption, and dismantling the systems that allow corruption to occur.”


China Points to Promethean Nature of Space Exploration–“To Light Up Human Civilization”

China Points to Promethean Nature of Space Exploration–“To Light Up Human Civilization”

May 18 (EIRNS)—At Monday’s Foreign Ministry briefing, spokesman Zhao Lijian responded to a comment about the fact that NASA and Russia had congratulated China for landing its first rover on Mars, with a report about the many congratulations it had received from many other countries around the globe. He also referenced President Xi Jinping’s congratulatory message which pointed out that the Mars landing marked an important step in China’s interstellar exploration–from the exploration of the Earth-Moon system to interplanetary exploration.

In very poetic language, reminiscent of western myth of Prometheus giving fire to mankind, Zhou then said: “The Chinese people have a long-cherished space dream. From Shenzhou, Chang’e and Yutu to Tiangong and Tianwen, these beautiful names are the crystallization of their infinite longing for the distant stars and unknown space. The Mars rover of Tianwen-1 is named Zhurong after the god of fire in ancient Chinese mythology. Fire brought warmth and brightness to the ancestors of humankind, and fire lit up human civilization. Naming China’s first Mars rover after the god of fire signifies igniting the flame of China’s inter-planetary exploration, inspiring those working in this field to surpass themselves and pursue space dreams.

“The universe is also a dream for all humankind. China has always committed itself to peaceful use of space, carried out relevant international exchange and cooperation and shared outcomes in space exploration. With the spirit of seeking benefits for all mankind, China will continue to advance international cooperation in an open and inclusive manner and make greater contributions to the lofty cause of exploring the mysteries of the universe and promoting peace and development for mankind.” (His full remarks are here.)

Compare this beautiful explanation to the pathetic commentary from that NATO outpost in the U.S., the Atlantic Council, in the Fast Thinking daily nuggets it puts out, today entitled, “Mars With Chinese Characteristics.” What does China’s achievement on Mars “mean for the great-power space race?” it asks. “What are the military implications?” It then consults one of its “space experts” who pontificates that Beijing will “continue to challenge U.S. superiority” in space, and warns that if China “pioneers activity beyond low-Earth orbit…the trajectory of U.S. security and prosperity in space comes into question,” calling for the US to lead a NATO-style force into space. (The entire Fast Thinking daily item is here.)


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