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Civilization Itself Is at Stake: Will We Rise to the Challenge?

Civilization Itself Is at Stake: Will We Rise to the Challenge?

Escalating tensions with Russia, driven by Ukrainian’s suicidal push for NATO membership, U.S. encouragement, and the U.S. military itself, threatens — despite President Biden’s reaching out to President Putin for an in-person summit — to explode into war, nuclear war. A provocative visit of former U.S. government officials to Taiwan adds more fuel to the fire of China’s cross-strait relations. Economic lending into the real economy by U.S. banks withers, even as they are showered with money. Inflation accelerates, and a blowout of the trans-Atlantic financial system is inevitable. Death by starvation stalks the impoverished inhabitants of war-zones Syria and Yemen.

Will these crises culminate in what would become nuclear conflict, a devastation of the human race, or will a new paradigm overthrow the oligarchical structures that drive conflict? What flanks can you create to achieve that happier outcome?

In her weekly Schiller Institute webcast discussion, Helga Zepp-LaRouche responded to the urgent call to the world by Cardinal Mario Zenari in Syria for the world to come to the aid of the Syrian people. More than 90% of Syrians are below the level of extreme poverty, and many are in danger of losing their lives due to famine. (Zenari’s Time is Running Out.) The last decade of war, the unjust sanctions, and the Covid pandemic have created an absolutely intolerable condition of suffering for the Syrian people.

Similar horrors confront Yemen, where the agonizing reality of hunger is conveyed in the powerful documentary {Hunger Ward}, referred to by the head of the World Food Program, David Beasley, who saw children dying before his very eyes in the hospital, and he was unable to help.

In both Syria and Yemen, the results of supposedly “humanitarian interventionist” wars — and there is nothing humanitarian about them! — conducted under the guise of defending the people from murderous governments, are genocidal. Was U.S. military intervention in Syria driven by Assad’s chemical weapon murder of the people there? No, that was not the reason, and the claims about the attacks were not true. As Col. (ret.) Richard Black (USA) has explained, the plan for regime change in Syria was developed ten years before the 2011 destabilization, as part of a policy of regime change in the entire region, comprising Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, Syria, and Libya.

The narrative about the causes of the war is completely wrong.

But even leaving that aside, start from the current humanitarian situation: “When you have a people about to die, and the world does absolutely nothing, that means the people watching that are {morally unfit to survive.} And I’m crying out to you to help us make a mobilization to get rid of the “Caesar” sanctions and to have the immediate reconstruction of Syria.”

In contrast, the so-called donors’ conference in Brussels raised a few billion dollars, but it was an absolute charade. The funds will {not} go to the Syrian government, but rather to neighboring countries that have taken in refugees, to NGOs, and to opposition groups. But, as Cardinal Zenari says, without a {reconstruction}, there will be no end to the misery. Peace through development is the only way out of the crisis.

And we know how to do this! The Schiller Institute has worked for half a century on plans for the development of Southwest Asia, dating back to Lyndon LaRouche’s 1975 “Oasis Plan” proposal. Since then, the LaRouche movement has developed a plan for Syria (“Project Phoenix“), a plan for Yemen (“Operation Felix“), all in the context of bringing Southwest Asia into a development paradigm of the New Silk Road / Belt and Road Initiative.

Against this potential stands the Caesar sanctions, based on a lie. Photographs supposedly showing victims of torture carried out by the Assad government were used as evidence to push through these brutal sanctions policy. But these photographs were mainly of Syrian soldiers killed by al-Qaeda-linked groups! This is not the first time such fabrications have been presented. Saddam Hussein’s forces were accused of ripping babies out of incubators in Kuwait. This was used to start the 1989 Iraq War. Then we had the “yellow cake” and other supposed evidence of Saddam Hussein’s program to create weapons of mass destruction — again, all lies. Then we had the lies from the White Helmets about the supposed use by Assad of chemical weapons.

Zepp-LaRouche demanded: “This must stop and the Caesar sanctions must be lifted. And all the members of Congress who do not lift these sanctions make themselves complicit in every death that occurs in the region…

“This has reached the point where either the world wakes up and we start to remedy this, or we will not survive, because of our own moral failure as a human species.

“I call on you: work with the Schiller Institute. Work with its Committee on the Coincidence of Opposites, which is working to get aid programs and reconstruction.

“I appeal to you: get in contact with the Schiller Institute and respond to the call by Cardinal Zenari, which has not been covered much at all by the Western press, which alone should show the one-sidedness of the media, which we must overcome.”

Will you answer the call? Become a member of the Schiller Institute and work to make its vision a reality.


Helga Zepp-LaRouche Briefs China Radio on EU-China Investment Accord

Schiller Institute founder Helga Zepp-LaRouche gave an interview on Dec. 31 to China Radio International’s “World Today” broadcast coverage of the EU-China Comprehensive Agreement on Investment (CAI). The interview can be found here: http://chinaplus.cri.cn/podcast/detail/1/2689962, it starts at 29.47, and includes Dr. Qiao Hai [ph] of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.

What follows is the exchange between CRI’s moderator and Helga Zepp-LaRouche:

CRI: Let’s begin this second half with the big investment deal between China and the European Union. The negotiations for a Comprehensive Agreement on Investment (CAI) was first launched in 2014, just before another new year. Both sides say the negotiations are complete. The announcement was made via a video link following a meeting between Chinese President Xi Jinping, his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron, Germany Chancellor Angela Merkel, and heads of the European Council [Charles Michel] and European Commission [Ursula von der Leyen]. President Xi Jinping said the agreement show China’s determination and confidence in further opening up its economy to the rest of the world. He said, it would help the world’s two major economies make a significant contribution to the world economic recovery in the post-pandemic era.

To talk more about this, we’re joined by Helga Zepp-LaRouche from Germany. She’s the founder of the Schiller Institute, an political and economic think tank; and Dr. Qiao Hai from the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. Thanks for joining us.

HELGA ZEPP-LAROUCHE: Hello.

CRI: Speaking of the importance, Helga, how do you understand the significance of this agreement for both sides?

ZEPP-LAROUCHE: I think it’s extremely beneficial. But if favors so far the larger firms and I think it needs to be more extended, also, for the smaller and medium enterprises. But I think the fact that President Macron from France participated in the signing ceremony is extremely important, because he has no title in that leadership of the EU, but it signals that both Germany and France are in total agreement.

Also I think it is very important that not one ambassador was against it: This is very important, because this agreement still has to be signed by all the national parliaments and EU, so the prospect that it will go through smoothly is actually looking very good. I think this is a major breakthrough for the whole world.

CRI: Helga, according to a transcript of an online meeting between the EU leaders and Chinese President Xi Jinping, French President Emmanuel Macron offered to visit China in the coming months, along with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, to discuss other areas of cooperation, such as healthcare and the environment. Are we going to see a stronger tie between China and the EU and stronger ties between China and European nations?

ZEPP-LAROUCHE: I definitely hope so. We are definitely in a world of great challenges, the pandemic is not over, international cooperation, and therefore my hope would be that European leaders would turn to Leibniz, who already in the 17th century said that is so happens that the most advanced cultures are situated at each end of the European continent, and they should join hands and develop the region in between. Now, I would hope that with China having made major concessions in this China-EU Investment, that Europe, in the other side would also be more open to cooperation with the Belt and Road Initiative. Because that would really give the framework to address all the many challenges, such as the underdevelopment of the developing sector. In order to overcome the pandemic, it is not enough to throw cash at the crisis when it is there, but I think that China and the EU should work together to industrialize Africa, Southwest Asia, and other regions, because otherwise, the danger of new pandemics will always exist.

I would hope European leaders would turn to Leibniz in their approach, because Leibniz, was an absolute admirer of Chinese culture. And I think Europeans have so much to discover if they study Chinese history and culture and philosophy, poetry, painting—there are so many things to be discovered, and I would hope that this agreement opens the way for a new renaissance in relations between the two.

CRI: Helga, what’s your take? Are those concerns from the U.S. society legitimate?

ZEPP-LAROUCHE: I think The “concerns,” so-called, are purely ideological and motivated by geopolitical thinking. In the recent period there has been an unprecedented anti-China campaign in the United States, which is blaming China for every problem on the planet, which is completely hysterical. But there is no way how the rise of China—which is really the motive for this—can be stopped! China is a country of 1.4 billion people, with a policy based on innovation. And China has been the leader of technological development for many centuries. So if China is now coming back as one of the most important four nations in the world, people should be happy about it, because, from everything I have studied and seen, China is a benign factor and does not do what the U.S. is accusing it of.

So I think it will be beneficial for U.S. firms, as Mr. Qiao just said. The anti-China sentiment, by the way, is not shared by many U.S. firms, by many of the governors, by many of the elected officials. So hopefully the example which is set now by China and the EU will also influence the situation in the United States.

CRI: Helga, many believe the conclusion of the agreement also shows the EU respects its relationship with the United States, but will not wait for the United States any longer. Do you detect a change of the EU-U.S. relations, when it comes to trade?

ZEPP-LAROUCHE: Well, it’s a mixed situation, because despite the fact that this ceremony was signed, Michel, from EU Council, still called China a “strategic rival.” But I think there is a general tendency in Europe to assert more sovereignty. Also within the different nations in Europe, there is a growing sense that national sovereignty is important. I hope this will lead to a new paradigm, because I think we need a completely new paradigm in in international relations, where geopolitics must be overcome. Geopolitics led two times to a world war in the 20th century, and the proposal by President Xi Jinping for a “shared future of mankind,” is, I think, a very important expression of this new paradigm. And if people start to study that and realize that in the post-pandemic world, either we find new ways of relating to each other or we will be doomed together. This is a branching point in history, where hopefully people will be open with new visions about the future of humanity.

CRI: Helga, do you think this deal will be a stepping stone to an EU-China free trade agreement?

ZEPP-LAROUCHE: Well, I think it will be a stepping stone, hopefully, for an even larger conception, because we need, really, a new world economic order. I think that the most challenging question is the development of the developing countries. We have a famine, which, according to the World Food Program threatens 270 million people’s dying by starvation in 2021. And I think there needs to be a crash program to overcome that. And I think the most important economic powers have to work together, and I really think the combination of pandemic and danger of world famine should be a motivation to really go for a completely different design, where the common good of the people is being put first and not the maximization of profit. This is a very important challenge to humanity that we take this step, and go away from what has been the financial system, where only the maximizing the profit of the speculators was what counted. This is a challenge to the sovereign governments of the world to respond to the need for the common good of their people. That is what people should think about.


Helga Zepp-LaRouche Revives Call for P5 Summit Now

Helga Zepp-LaRouche, on Dec. 28, in a discussion with Schiller Institute members from the United States, Canada, Gambia, Ireland, Denmark, Italy, and Germany about the insanity of Secretary of State Pompeo amidst the danger of extreme international tensions amidst the pandemic, and the threat of a famine of biblical proportions, said that it was of urgent importance for President Donald Trump to call Russia and China immediately to convene the P5 summit called for by Russian President Putin in January of this year.

She said:

“I think that President Trump, no matter what happens on January 6, whether or not he will be in the White House on January 20, he could do one thing. He could immediately call up Russia and China and say that because of the crisis, because of the pandemic, because of the famine, because of the danger to world peace, that he wants to respond to the offer of Putin to have the summit of the permanent five members on the UN Security Council, which President Putin has been advocating since January. Trump should say that he wants to have that summit right away. And that would be the very best thing he could do to counter all of this propaganda.

“The more people call the White House to suggest that, and who express [the need for the summit] in any other way, the better. I have no idea why Trump has not kicked out Pompeo. He is the same as Bolton on many of these issues. President Trump did have the courage to kick out Bolton. That was one of the best things he ever did.

“But I think to outflank [these dangers], in this incredibly complex situation, is for President Trump to now follow up on Putin’s offer for this summit, and meet with Putin, and Xi Jinping. This meeting can happen. French President Macron has already said he supports having such a summit, [U.K. Prime Minister] Boris Johnson has said he is in favor of it. But the truly important people are Presidents Trump, Putin, and Xi Jinping, who will be the difference in such a meeting. Johnson and Macron could not ruin such a combination. That is the one thing that Trump must be encouraged to do. I’m 100% sure that Russia and China would absolutely go for it immediately.”


Movisol Conference on BRI in Milan

The conference “Italy on the New Silk Road” organized by Movisol (LaRouche’s movement in Italy) and the Lombardy Region (state legislature) in Milan Wednesday, was a success, with Undersecretary Michele Geraci (of the Task Force China in the Italian government) opening it and emphasizing the importance of the MOU which Italy will sign with President Xi Jinping on March 22 in Rome, of the benefits for Italy of this cooperation with China, including for the development of the Italian Mezzogiorno.

Undersecretary of the Task Force China in the Italian government, Michele Geraci and EIR's Claudio Celani.

Undersecretary of the Task Force China in the Italian government, Michele Geraci and EIR’s Claudio Celani.

Geraci was followed by Helga Zepp-LaRouche, who explained the more profound meaning of this important development for the rest of the world, the realization of the New Paradigm for which Lyndon LaRouche and the Schiller Institute have been working for the last 30 years. See a full text of Helga’s remarks below.

There was a short message from Sen. Tony Iwobi, the first Nigerian parliamentarian elected for the Lega, about the historical significance on the Transaqua project, which was then described in detail by Engineer Bocchetto of Bonifica, which is working on the feasibility study with China.

Geraci, Celani, Zepp-LaRouche and Movisol leader, Liliana Gorini.

Geraci, Celani, Zepp-LaRouche and Movisol leader, Liliana Gorini.

Liliana Gorini, chairwoman of Movisol, concluded the conference by thanking the Lombardy Region, which had helped to organize it, and dedicating it to Lyndon LaRouche, who is known in Italy not only as the “visionary” of the New Silk Road, as former Economics Minister Giulio Tremonti defined him Tuesday in Corriere della Sera, but also as the main promoter of Glass-Steagall and LaRouche’s Four Laws, and reminding people how many parliamentarians who had heard him speak at the Italian Finance Committee at the Parliament in Rome in 1998, admitted years later that he was completely right.


TRANSCRIPT OF HELGA ZEPP-LAROUCHE’S REMARKS

ZEPP-LAROUCHE: It is in one sense quite amusing to see what high waves the possibility of Italy signing the MOU with China is causing right now.  Because, when Xi Jinping announced the New Silk Road in 2013 and then proceeded to make treaties in the meantime, I think it’s with 112 countries, an enormous growth developed, six major industrial corridors, the Belt and Road Initiative became very quickly the largest infrastructure project in history, ever.  And the strange thing was that for about four years, in the mainstream media in the United States and Europe, there was practically no reporting about this.

And then, all of a sudden, in an obviously coordinated way, the major think tanks of Europe and the United States started a series of attacks, studies, that China is causing countries to fall into a debt trap, that it’s just an effort to replace the United States as the dominant force in the world, to become Chinese imperialists, that the Belt and Road projects are not viable, that China is an authoritarian system and Xi Jinping is a dictator.  So all of a sudden, you had a barrage of attacks on this concept.

The funny thing is, if you would ask and listen to the leaders of the countries cooperating with the Belt and Road, like the Africans, the Asian countries, the Latin American countries, they would be full of praise and say that with the Chinese cooperation, they have for the first time, the opportunity to overcome the underdevelopment and poverty they had suffered as a result of Western colonialism, and 70 years of IMF conditionalities, which prevented them from having exactly that kind of development.  And they were full of praise, calling China a friend — so you get a completely opposite view.

I have come to the conclusion that everything in the Western mainstream media are saying about China is fake news, and just a lie.  And it comes from the fact that many people in the West simply have lost the ability to imagine that any country, let alone China, could promote something which is, indeed, for the common good of all of humanity. When Xi Jinping talks about the “shared community of the common future of mankind,” or the “community of destiny,” he means it!  And isn’t it obvious that in the time of thermonuclear weapons, in international space travel, of conquering all the problems of the world, that we have to think about the one humanity first, before we talk about national interests? As a matter of fact, the concept of a win-win cooperation for the Belt and Road Initiative, it has all the economic aspects which are beneficial to all the countries that have participated.

But it is much more than that:  Because from the standpoint of the evolution of mankind, if you take a step back, and don’t take a look at the conflict between Marseille and Trieste, which I understand is obviously very important for the Italians, but if you look at the larger point of view, isn’t it natural that infrastructure development would eventually open up all continents and connect them?

So now, all of a sudden, you have this eruption of anti-China propaganda, but it comes from the fact that we are now at a  point where something is happening, which has already happened 16 times in history, namely, that the up-to-now dominant power is being surpassed by the up-to-now second largest power. And in history this has led 12 times to war, between those two competing power, and 4 times it was just that the second power surpassed the dominant power without war.  China has emphasized many times, they don’t want, obviously, to follow the 12 examples where this conflict would lead to war, but they also don’t want to simply replace the United States in the role of the leader of an unipolar world, but that they want to build a completely new system of international relations based on sovereignty, on respect for the different social system, on non-interference, and actually proposing a completely new system of international relations.

So, the big question strategically is you have the conflict between the United States and Russia, which is obvious, because of the cancellation of the ABM Treaty, then the Russian reaction to that, and now the cancellation of the INF Treaty — so there are many who think that we are actually close, in worse strategic crisis than during the height of the Cuban Missile Crisis, because of the relations between the United States and Russia. But if you talk to some strategic insiders on both sides of the Atlantic, they easily admit that the much more dangerous conflict is actually the one between the United States and China:  Will the United States accept the rise of Asia, and the Belt and Road Initiative is just the obvious expression of that?  Or, is what was said by the RAND Corporation a couple of months ago, that it’s better to have the war with China now, than in 10 years, because the casualties will be less?

Well, obviously, this is something we have to change, and I think that the best way to change it is, indeed, to bring in this reality of a new paradigm of thinking altogether:  We have to leave geopolitics.  We have to leave the idea that there can be a legitimate interest of one country, or a group of country, against another bloc of countries, because this was what led twice to world war in the 20th century.  As a matter of fact, I think the potential to overcome this conflict is absolutely there.  I know in Europe, many people are fainting when you mention the name of President Donald Trump, but President Trump is not seeking confrontation with Russia — as a matter of fact, he wants to have an improved relation with Russia, which he proved in the summit with Putin in Helsinki.  And despite the present trade tension, President Trump always talks about President Xi Jinping as his very good friend, and China being a great country and that he wants to actually have a good relationship between the United States and China.

So the attacks on Italy, coming from the White House — the [i]Financial Times[/i] mentioned this Garrett Marquis — is not representing the same view as Trump.  It comes from a faction of the neo-con which are unfortunately also in the Trump Administration, but the factional situation in the United States is very divided.  You have the Democrats and the neo-cons trying to get Trump out of office with Russiagate, but on the other side, I think President Trump has proven a tremendous sustainability against the efforts to drive him out of office, and his supporters are absolutely backing him, and the chances that there will be a second Trump Administration are actually very, very high.

Now one of the accusations against China and the Belt and Road Initiative is that it would divide Europe.  I think everybody knows Europe is divided already, without China:  You have the North-South conflict because of the EU austerity policy, which impoverished, Greece, Italy, Spain, Portugal, gave no development to the East European countries, so they are now happy to cooperate with the Belt and Road initiative, because the EU did not provide these things.  Now, the second area of division is obviously the migrant issue, where you have the division between East and West — the East European countries do not want to have any part of the proposed quota system of the EU.

Now, what Italy is actually doing in this context is really a role model, because the kind of cooperation between Italian firms and Chinese firms in the development of Africa is actually the only human way to address the refugee question.

So you have right now 13 countries which have already signed the MOU with China; you have, now with Italy, the first G7 country (which is really overrated, because the G7 is no longer that important as compared to the G20, for example).  And you have many ports — Mr. Geraci said, if actually all the ports of Europe which are already wanting to be a hub between not only the New Silk Road over the land route, but also hubs to the Maritime Silk Road, Portugal and Spain becoming the hub for all the Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking countries around the world.  So there is a completely changed attitude developing very quickly.

Now, also even in Germany and France, the two countries which are now trying to put the brakes on the most, apart from the EU Commission, there are many cities which are absolutely recognizing their self-interest to cooperate with the Belt and Road Initiative.  You have three states in Germany — Schleswig-Holstein, Bavaria, and Brandenburg — which all the time have huge delegations back and forth; you have many cities whose mayors are complete fans of cooperation with China, and it is an increasing dynamic, which is growing more rapidly than you would think.

So, if you would ask my prognosis, I think the perspective of unifying Europe, not necessarily under the EU bureaucracy, but in the conception of de Gaulle, more like a “Europe of the Fatherlands” uniting with China, with Russia, with the Belt and Road Initiative, the Eurasian Economic Union [EAEU], and European countries, to cooperate fully in this new paradigm is absolutely there.

Well, I think that that is also the only way how Europe can impact the strategic situation:  Because if you had a united Europe of the Fatherlands cooperating with the Belt and Road Initiative, including Germany and France, that would be the best way to get the United States to also give up their opposition — which I said, is not Trump himself, but these other forces — and get the United States to join the new paradigm.  And I think this is the [i]only[/i] hope we have to avoid a catastrophe where we would end in World War III with nuclear weapons, meaning the extinction of civilization. So in that sense, what Italy is doing right now, is of the greatest historical importance, because Italy, with what you are doing, with the MOU but also with the joint ventures with China in Africa, can become the role model for all the other European countries.

But the New Silk Road is not just an economic concept. Obviously, infrastructure, investment, all of this is extremely important, as the backbone, but it has a much more, and not so well-known cultural/moral dimension, which I think is best expressed in the fact that the Chinese thinking is actually based on the Confucian theory, namely, that you absolutely must have harmony among all the nations, developing all in a harmonious way.  And when some think tanks say that there is now a competition of systems between the Western liberal model and the state-guided model of the Chinese state economy, well, what they really mean is, China has developed its whole policy based on a Confucian orientation, which means that the state is also in charge of the moral improvement of its population through the aesthetical education.  As a matter of fact, Xi Jinping has said repeatedly, that he puts the highest emphasis on the aesthetical education, because the result of this is the “beauty of the mind” and the “beauty of the soul.”

So the problem is, the reason why some people in the West regard that as a competition, is because Western neo-liberal and liberal philosophy has moved away from that conception:  We are no longer humanists.  We are no longer thinking as during the Italian Renaissance or the German Classical period, but we have replaced that with a liberal thinking of “everything is allowed,” every degenerate form of culture is allowed, everything goes — I don’t want to elaborate that, but if you look at the violence, the pornography in the entertainment, we don’t have to worry.  We will lose that competition of the systems, simply because we are not taking care of our future generations, but allowing them to completely morally decay.

And that is why I think that we have to understand that the only way how Europe can persist in the coming future is not through military power — what Mr. Macron is proposing is ridiculous — but we will preserve our European culture [i]only[/i] if we return to the greatest tradition of our own history, meaning reviving the spirit and the ideas and principles of the Italian Renaissance, of the Ecole Polytechnique of France, of the German Classical music, literature, and poetry.  Only if we rise again to our best traditions can we persist in the coming world.

So I think that the cultural dimension of the New Silk Road is as important, if not more important, than the question of economics.

I would be happy to take any questions.  Thank you.


Statement to Form The Committee for the Coincidence of Opposites (Coincidentia Oppositorum)

Statement to Form The Committee for the Coincidence of Opposites (Coincidentia Oppositorum)

To offer solutions through a new global health initiative.

By Helga Zepp-LaRouche, The Schiller Institute, Founder and Chair

(To add your name to endorse the Committee for the Coincidence of Opposites click here.)

The combination of crises we are now facing has reached such unprecedented proportions that it seems to exceed the psychological limits of what is bearable. Health experts throughout the world are warning that it may take another nine months before all nations can be supplied with a vaccine — and even then, the availability is not guaranteed. In the meantime, another one million people may lose their lives due to COVID-19.

But a much greater number of lives are threatened by the famine now spreading in developing countries, as a result of the decline in agriculture, and the collapse of the so-called informal sector of the economy. Many countries are already torn apart by preexisting social tensions that the pandemic has now exacerbated. This dynamic could massively grow in the coming months.

The International Labor Organization (ILO) has reported a huge drop of 10.7% in global labor income in the first nine months of this year, which amounts to 3.5 trillion dollars, and a loss of up to 500 million jobs by the end of the year. In the advanced economies, the bankruptcies, short-hours, and layoffs that jeopardize the existence of so many, were at least temporarily attenuated by government relief programs. But most developing countries are totally unable to fund similar programs. In the so-called “lower-middle income” countries, the income loss amounted to 23.3% in the second quarter, and 15.6% in the third quarter, and the forecasts for the fourth are much more pessimistic.

Considering that more than half the population in sub-Saharan African countries did not have well-balanced and sufficient nourishment even before the outbreak of COVID-19, the news reported by Vice.com that food prices in all of Africa have risen by 250%, is truly catastrophic. As the head of the World Food Program (WFP) David Beasley has warned for months now, a famine of “biblical proportions” threatens to kill up to 300,000 people per day. Phillip Tsokolibane, Schiller Institute collaborator in South Africa, has issued an urgent appeal for an international mobilization to fight starvation in Africa. “It is not a matter of what will happen – IT IS ALREADY HAPPENING.”

It is clear that faced with such a tragedy, only governments working together can implement the emergency programs needed to save the lives of many millions. However, unfortunately, the past months have shown that geopolitical confrontation with Russia and China is on the West’s agenda, and not cooperation, and, to name just one example, of the 5 billion dollars that the WFP urgently requires, it has only received 750 million. What is to be done? Shall we stand by, and watch the tragedy play out before our eyes?

In response to the 14th century Dark Age, which was characterized by catastrophes similar to those of today, Nicholas of Cusa, the inventor of modern science and the sovereign nation-state, and the great thinker of the 15th century, developed a new method of thinking, the Coincidentia Oppositorum, which represented, as he emphasized, an entirely new approach to solving problems. It was the idea that the human mind, in the living image of the Creator, is able to define the higher level on which all seemingly unsolvable contradictions can be resolved. According to Nicholas, the human mind is able to think of the One, which is of a higher power than the Many. In a similar way, Albert Einstein observed that problems cannot be solved on the level on which they were created.

Thinking in terms of the coincidence of opposites is the method that must be applied to solve the crisis that threatens all mankind today. We have to define a solution that meets the existential needs of all relevant individuals and interest groups on an equal basis. Concretely, this approach is readily applicable in regard to the pandemic.

It is the young people of this world whose future is most threatened by the combination of the pandemic and the economic crisis, although they were in no way responsible for them. Therefore, we need to develop prospects for them that both address the real problem, and give them a concrete task. We will only be able to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic, and similar future pandemics, if a modern healthcare program is established in every single country of the world, one which corresponds, in principle, to the Hill-Burton standard in the U.S., the German and French healthcare systems before their privatization drives, or the system which proved to be so successful in Wuhan, China.

The first step in that direction could be taken by setting up partnerships between, for example, university clinics, hospitals, and medical faculties in the U.S. and European nations, and similar institutions in Africa. To build a modern healthcare system, not only medical capacities, such as hospitals, infrastructure, water, electricity, etc. are needed, but also a large number of well-trained medical personnel.

In that regard, such partnerships should train young people in the U.S., Europe and African countries, some of whom are unemployed, firstly, to become, medical auxiliaries, and then medical personnel, on the model of Roosevelt’s Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC). The very first step is to train young people so they can be deployed into the communities, or villages, and show the population the public health measures needed to fight the pandemic. In Tuskegee (Alabama), Tennessee, St. Louis (Missouri), and other places in the U.S., such cooperation with local institutions is already in place, which also involves clinics and local police forces in the various confidence-building measures, such as home visits, which is of extraordinary importance, given the overall uncertainties of the population, and the (often massive) campaigns against wearing masks, the rejection of vaccines, etc.

In the African partnership projects, the joint training and deployment of American and European youth aid workers with African youth, also requires confidence-building measures that can be carried out by medical personnel, as well as representatives of churches, or disaster-control organizations. Such programs should first focus on the distribution of medical supplies, and easily transportable food, such as powdered milk, dried and canned meat, etc., and then be expanded, as quickly as possible, to include training in infrastructure building, farming and industrial projects.

In the social flashpoints in American cities or European suburbs, where violent street fights have recently occurred for various reasons, and where young people are exposed to a wide array of dangers, such as drugs, alcohol, gang crime, internet addiction and a degraded counterculture, such training opportunities would be just the alternative they need to find a socially necessary and future-oriented task. In the U.S., such creative non-violent direct action would be in the historic tradition of the civil rights movement of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. It should be remembered that Amelia Boynton Robinson, the civil rights activist who had brought Dr. King to Selma, Alabama, and who was beaten up by the police, and left for dead on the Edmund Pettus Bridge, during the infamous “Bloody Sunday” in March 1965, was the Vice President of the Schiller Institute for 25 years.

This is not the place to discuss the complexity of the social flashpoints, be it in the American cities where violence has broken out, in particular in the aftermath of the murder of African-American George Floyd, or in the French suburbs, where the effects of the pandemic dramatically exacerbated the long-standing social unrest. Although those social conflicts are undoubtedly instrumentalized by certain forces for their own political ends, it is nonetheless urgent to eliminate the real causes of the despair and uprooting of the young generation. Such an initial training to become medical auxiliaries, in many cases, can be the entry point for further professional training as a nurse, doctor or medical scientist.

In this moment of extreme polarization and violence in the streets the Committee of Coincidence of Opposites will also reconnect to the nonviolent tradition of Mahatma Gandhi, who defeated the British Empire in India, with that method and the Civil Rights Movement of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who were able to bring otherwise totally opposed political forces together in direct civil action.

This committee should bring together people with various qualifications, who can demonstrate in an initially small, but well-designed, example, how to approach the problem, in such a way that it can also be used as a pilot project for the large-scale government programs, that will hopefully follow soon after.

While it is urgent to train enough medical personnel worldwide to build a world health system, it must go hand in hand with overcoming the hunger pandemic. It is a crime against humanity that, as a result of the hunger crisis, massively compounded by the pandemic, literally many millions of people in developing countries are at risk of starvation (one of the most excruciating forms of death, according to former UN commissioner for Human Rights Jean Ziegler), while in the U.S. and Europe, farmers are struggling for their economic survival. Some have had to kill their herds, because the cartels have created slave labor-like conditions in the meat processing industry, leading to the repeated emergence of COVID-19 clusters. It is also unacceptable that the farmers, who produce vital sustenance for the entire society, are driven into bankruptcy by the maximum-profit policy of the banks and cartels, and by ideological, so-called “green” constraints.

Farm representatives should therefore join these medical teams to organize the emergency delivery of appropriate foodstuffs to crisis zones, and to begin training other young people to develop agricultural capacities in developing countries. Together with African farmers, they could begin to set up modern agriculture, which, of course, requires the development of infrastructure, water and electricity supplies, etc. There are enthusiastic young and older farmers in the U.S., Germany, France or Italy, who, in such a crisis situation, would consider it part of their mission in life to help overcome an unprecedented emergency with such a program.

The U.S. and Europe need an association of retired medical workers, concerned individuals, and social and religious organizations, to work together on this committee, in order to set up this training project. Part of their task is also to raise the donations needed from international and medium-sized firms, from board members who understand not only that these projects are a humanitarian necessity, but that it is also in their own best interest to maintain a livable world.

As soon as these projects take on a concrete form, they will spark the kind of enthusiasm that all great pioneer projects can generate, despite the seriousness of the situation, and they will give future prospects to many young people who would otherwise be dragged into social revolts and violent activities.

As mentioned, such a private initiative (direct civil action) in the tradition of the non-violent actions of Mahatma Gandhi and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. cannot, by itself, solve the gigantic challenge before us. But it can provide a practical example of how people of good will can intervene in an otherwise desperate situation, and point to the required solution. These concrete examples will then encourage governments, or put pressure on them, to join forces and create, through a new credit system, the framework to permanently overcome underdevelopment in the developing countries.

In that way, the idea of Nicholas of Cusa, that a solution can be found on a higher level that takes into account the interests of all those involved, would find a concrete application today. This initiative will contribute to the fight against the pandemic, it will define a meaningful task for young people, and it will help to improve acute emergency situations in economically disadvantaged regions in the U.S. and Europe, as well as African countries. It will also highlight the vital importance of agriculture in times of famine, and save people from starvation. In a situation where many people feel powerless in the face of the catastrophe of the century, the committee will give every individual the opportunity to contribute something to overcoming the crisis.

To add your name to endorse the Committee for the Coincidence of Opposites click here or for more information call 917-475-8828.


Video — Roundtable Discussion, Committee for the Coincidence of Opposites

A group of forty individuals, including medical professionals, farmers, musicians,  scientists, educators, clergy, civil rights leaders, community activists and concerned citizens, held a round table discussion on October 23rd, 2020, in response to the call issued by Schiller Institute chairwoman Helga Zepp-LaRouche to form The Committee for the Coincidence of Opposites to address the COVID pandemic, now coupled with an extreme famine crisis. The discussion was begun with brief remarks from Zepp-LaRouche; Dr. Joycelyn Elders, former U.S. Surgeon General; and Mike Callicrate, farm leader, and owner of Ranch Foods Direct. A lively elaboration followed in which several medical professional detailed work which they have already been conducting in Africa, Asia and South America, as well as in the U.S., which would lend itself to the type of community healthcare worker (CCC program) that Zepp-LaRouche and Dr. Elders have been emphasizing. Farm leaders discussed their willingness and capability to produce enough food to stop starvation feed the world, if given the go ahead and parity prices to survive and continue producing.  The video below includes introductory remarks from Zepp-LaRouche, Dr. Elders and Mike Callicrate.

CLICK HERE to endorse the call or become active in the Health Committee for the Coincidence of Opposites


Schiller Institute Participates in Alexandrov Choir Commemoration

On January 3rd, 2019, for the third year in a row, a memorial was held in Bayonne, New Jersey for the victims of the December 25th, 2016 plane crash which took the lives of the many members of Russia’s famous Alexandrov Ensemble, journalists, philanthropist Elizaveta Glinka, and others.  This memorial, organized by the Schiller Institute, took place at the foot of the “Tear Drop Memorial,” a 100-foot statue gifted to the United States by the Russian Federation in 2005 in honor of the victims of the September 11th, 2001 terrorist attacks.

Members of the Schiller Institute and the Schiller Institute NYC Chorus, led by Diane Sare, Founder and Co-Director, were joined by the Bayonne Fire Department Honor Guard, Captain Haiber and Chief Weaver of the Bayonne Fire Department, Dmitry Chumakov, Deputy Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation, Dr. Louay Falouh, Minister Counselor of the Syrian UN Mission, Father John Fencik of Saint Mary’s Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Church, and others in the ceremony. In opening the ceremony, the Chorus sang both the Russian national anthem (in Russian) and the US national anthem.  The Bayonne Fire Department Honor Guard stood at attention throughout the forty five minute ceremony.

These performances were followed by comments from Deputy Permanent Representative Chumakov, who paid tribute to the victims of the 2016 tragedy and spoke to the continuation of the efforts of both the reconstituted Alexandrov Ensemble and the Charity Foundation of Elizaveta Glinka. He concluded with significant statement of Russian policy in Syria: “Considerable progress has been made on Syria in 2018. Now we need to step up joint efforts to launch the Constitutional Committee in Geneva, that would enjoy support of the Syrian parties, in accordance with the decisions of the Syrian National Dialogue Congress in Sochi. Syria’s future must be determined by the Syrians themselves in a political process they conduct and control with international mediation. Such an approach would contribute to settling and overcoming the consequences of the war; re-establishing the country’s full sovereignty and territorial integrity.” Mr. Chumakov’s full statement is available on the Russian Federation UN Mission’s website.

Then spoke Dr. Louay Falouh, Minister Counselor of the Syrian UN Mission, who thanked the government of the Russian Federation for their work to support Syria, and expressed his deep condolences for the losses of December 25th, 2016.  Chief Weaver and Captain Haiber of the Bayonne Fire Department separately gave profound remarks expressing their condolences, as well as their thanks to Russia for the comfort they personally felt when visiting the Tear Drop Memorial. Bayonne first responders received enormous numbers of people fleeing by boat from Manhattan on 9/11. Captain Haiber told the audience, “At times like this, we are neither Russian nor American—we are human.” He also spoke in Russian, expressing his wishes for peace and friendship.

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Father Fencik, whose close relative had been the translator at the famous meeting on the Elbe River between Soviet and American forces, gave an invocation saying that these dead will never be forgotten, and then gave a sung prayer in Russian.

At the conclusion, Diane Sare, Founder and Co-Director of the Schiller Institute NYC Chorus, spoke on behalf of the Schiller Institute and the Schiller Institute NYC Chorus, and read aloud the written message from Schiller Institute President Helga Zepp-LaRouche.

Two years after the tragic death of 64 members of the Alexandrov Choir Ensemble on their way to Syria on December 25th, 2016, that country is now almost entirely freed from the terror of ISIS due to the determined intervention of Russia in collaboration with the Syrian army. This liberation demonstrates what human beings can do when they unite with a good plan and for a just cause, and that, as Friedrich Schiller would say, even the most tyrannical foe can be subdued. As now there will be a more hopeful period in the history of Syria, with the economic reconstruction and the return of millions of refugees, the memory of the Alexandrov Choir Ensemble will be written into the history of Syria and should be celebrated every year with beautiful concerts in many cities, celebrating the Russian-Syrian friendship and the immortality of great art and the artists, who devote their lives to the ennoblement of mankind.

— Helga Zepp-LaRouche, Founder, Schiller Institute

Diane concluded her remarks by saying that this moment called to mind to words that Handel had immortalized the his Messiah “Death is Swallowed up in Victory.”

Each of the speakers made a special point of thanking the Schiller Institute for organizing the event. Russian news service TASS, as well as TV stations Russia 1 and RT were present.

Participation in this event had a profound effect on our activists and choir members who joined in.  Patrick from Connecticut said, “I was so glad to be there and be a part of this. As I looked around and saw who was gathered here, I felt like we were on a kind of different planet from the rest of the population – and how important is that we do this.”

View more pictures from the event.


New Year Message From Helga Zepp-LaRouche!

At the beginning of 2018, Helga Zepp-LaRouche said the most important goal for 2018 was ending the stranglehold of geopolitics. While we still have much to do, many historic steps have been taken in that direction around the world.

See Helga’s special 2019 New Year message for a review of what we’ve accomplished in 2018, and what’s needed in 2019.


Helga Zepp-LaRouche Addresses Institut Mandela Conference in Paris

PARIS, July 10 – Schiller Institute President Helga Zepp-LaRouche was invited on July 6 to address the Institut Mandela for the African Economic and Consular Days in Paris.

Madame Zepp-LaRouche was invited on the subject “Partnership, Inclusive Growth and Infrastructure in Africa” following the publication of her call to the European Union to apply the model of the Singapore summit between President Trump and Chairman Kim Jong-un to a European development project for Africa. Her appeal, “History Is Now Being Written in Asia! The EU Summit Must Follow the Example of Singapore!” has been being circulated in the African networks in France, as well as throughout Europe.

The video of her remarks is available HERE and the transcript is below.

The first panel presented the “Singapore spirit” with the participation of the Ambassador of Eritrea, speaking on the end of the war with Ethiopia and the economic perspective of the biggest free trade zone in Djibouti, for real cooperation in the region.

Following her presentation was Ghana’s Minister Plenipotentiary and Deputy Head of Mission Bonaventure Adjavor at the Paris Embassy, who developed the concept of a new era for Africa—a new era of manufacturing from raw materials, and no longer merely exporting them. He used the example of cocoa, of which Ghana and Ivory Coast have 80% of world production, all of which goes for export. But he described that cocoa can be a primary material for manufacturing many products, including brandy, body lotion, chocolate, etc., and that the policy of President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo’s government is to do that.

President Akufo-Addo, then newly elected, is famous for his public lecture to visiting French President Emmanuel Macron during their joint press conference on Dec. 4, 2017, in which Akufo-Addo said Africa “can no longer continue to make policy for ourselves … on the basis of whatever support that the Western world or France, or the European Union can give us…. We have to get away from this mindset of dependency. … Our concern should be what do we need to do in this 21st century to move Africa away from being cap in hand … to have a mindset that says we can do it … and once we have that mindset we’ll see there’s a liberating factor for ourselves.”

Helga Zepp-LaRouche then spoke, defining the long-term perspective for Africa and the world, presenting the World Land-Bridge report and the physical project for Africa within the framework of the Belt and Road dynamic, as in Ethiopia with the high-speed train. She also presented the other projects the Schiller Institute has developed or promoted including the Transaqua project, and the extension of the World Land-Bridge into Africa via a tunnel between Spain and Morocco and/or between Sicily and Tunisia.

The audience was very challenged by the optimistic vision of Africa, as Mrs. Zepp-LaRouche showed the photograph of Africa from space at night, as it is now, and as it would be, all lit up, in 2050.

All 40 people in the room and on the panels were members of institutions, such as the International Organization of La Francophonie, and lawyers, entrepreneurs, public relations, etc.

The next speaker was the president of the Efficiency Club, formed by the Diaspora and first pan-African economic network of Europe. They are trying to stop the flow of remissions from the diaspora to Africa just to help their families survive. He developed the necessity to create a network of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) throughout the continent to provide jobs and not just subsistence on money.

Then a final panel was very interesting, with one of the panelists bringing in the economics of Alexander Hamilton, and how Africa has to go with this manufacturing economy. He also mentioned that Colbert had called Huygens and Cassini to France to develop a real science academy, and asserted that Africa has to do the same today. Many contacts were made … our time is now.

The Institut Mandela is dedicated to the strategic mission of Africa’s emergence as well as the “open society” values of peace through “intellectual diplomacy.” Its proposals are conveyed to public policymakers, the international community, private actors, and civil society, so that they can make visionary decisions. Its fundamental mission is to reorganize intellectually and institutionally the African countries.

The Institut’s activities revolve around six research areas:
Security and Development, Emergence of Africa, Geopolitics and Geostrategy of raw materials, Africanization of democracy, Prospects of African governance, Energy and Environment.

The Mandela Prizes are awarded annually to personalities or institutions to acknowledge their laudable actions in favor of Africa and peace, in the spirit of Pan-Africanism.

Transcript of Helga Zepp-LaRouche’s remarks:

Ladies and Gentlemen:

There is a profound reason for optimism for the African continent, because with the rise of China, and especially the New Paradigm which emerged with the Belt and Road Initiative, the world has been changing, especially in the last five years with an incredible speed. What China has done with the New Silk Road is to develop a new model of relations among each other, and it is an initiative which is open to all nations of the world.

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So this map is actually a map of uniting all continents through tunnels and bridges, and as we can see, African development is an integral part of this world development.

What has happened is that with the offer to have a win-win cooperation, where according to the Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, already 140 nations are participating, in various degrees, the spirit of the New Silk Road has actually captured the imagination of many countries in Africa, in Asia, and in Latin America, who see for the first time the concrete possibility to overcome poverty and underdevelopment in the short term.

In the last ten, but especially five years, what China has done is to create development potentials after centuries of colonialism and decades of IMF conditionalities, which were designed to prevent African and Third World development in general.

With this new change in the strategic situation there is the absolute perspective of turning Africa into a global powerhouse.

There has been a study published last November, that Africa is going to be the next factory of the world, and the Russian International Affairs Council, RIAC, just put out new figures showing the positive role of China in the development of Africa.

In 2000, the total trade between China and African states was $10 billion only. In 2014, the China was already Africa’s main trading partner, with a trade volume of $200 billion, and in 2017 China gave additional loans of more than $100 billion.

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(Next) Naturally, this is the Djibouti-Addis Ababa railway, which was built with Chinese help; it’s 750km long, and it now allows also to bring food aid to areas which are hit by drought which was not possible before. And this is just the very beginning. China also has developed a China-Africa Development Fund, which is financed by the China Development Fund, and also many of the other state banks of China have been involved in direct investments. Over the last decade, China took part in the creation of more than 100 industrial zones, 40% of which are already operational. They have helped to build 5,756km of railway, 4335km of motorways, 9 ports, 14 airports, 34 power stations, 10 large and 1,000 small hydroelectric power stations, and by the end of 2016, it had this number.

This coming September, there will be a big China-African Union summit which obviously will take this relationship to a new level.

There is a fundamental change, because previously the Western countries refused to invest in a real way in Africa, but with the second largest economy of the world, there is now the chance for African nations to replicate the Chinese model of development, each in their own African way. But nevertheless, in terms of the infrastructure and industrial development they can take China as a model, which after all, in the last 40 years had an incredible transformation, from being a very, very underdeveloped country, to now being an absolutely breathtaking, dynamic economy.

This is the positive side. On the other side, we are confronted with unprecedented challenges: Terrorism, financial turbulence, migrants, and a large percentage of the 68.5 million refugees worldwide are migrating from Africa, trying to get through the Sahara, many of them dying of thirst; or drowning in the Mediterranean, where in the last years, thousands if not tens of thousands of people have drowned.

Since the refugee crisis escalated in Southwest Asia and Africa in 2015, it became very clear how deeply disunited the European Union is. And especially in the recent weeks there was a total government crisis in Germany, which nearly ended the political career of Chancellor Merkel. There was demonstrated a complete erosion of the EU: No unity, no solidarity, tensions between France and Italy, total tensions between Eastern Europe and Western Europe. And it is also very clear that they could not come up with any solution, because all they could propose at the recent EU summit was a complete brutalization of the migrant issue: They want to militarize Frontex, to supposedly keep the refugees out of the EU, which is sort of a maritime border police, and there were event proposals to use the German army or even NATO, to put the refugees into “disembarkment camps,” as they call them, either within Europe or in North African states, all of which already have rejected to be the hosts of such camps.

And Pope Francis has compared these camps to the concentration camps of the Nazi period.

So, what has happened to “Western values”? What about human rights? What about democracy? These are barbarian proposals, and they’re not only inhuman, but they also will not work. They will not work: They all the time talk about that one needs to look at the root causes for the refugee crisis, but they never do.

So, I have a proposal how this can be changed: I call it the “Singapore Summit model.” We all have witnessed the very historic summit between President Trump and President Kim Jong-un of North Korea recently in Singapore. And it is very clear that it {is} the New Silk Road Spirit which has changed the environment in Asia, which made this summit possible in the way it took place, and it is also an example of how you can change, within a few months, a relationship of complete adversity and the potential trigger of a large nuclear war, which was the situation between the United States and North Korea, and turn it into cooperation. This agreement now includes the denuclearization of North Korea, in exchange for the promise from the United States, China and Russia to help to develop North Korea economically, and turn it into a prosperous nation.

My proposal was that the EU should have changed the agenda of their just-concluded summit, invite Chinese President Xi Jinping, and the African heads of state who already have successfully cooperated with China; and then present a comprehensive crash program for the development of the infrastructure in Africa. (Next slide) Where the presence of Xi Jinping would give this credibility, because China has delivered on development, and the idea would be to present such an integrated, continental transport plan, a trans-African transport network, which already has been proposed by Foreign Minister Wang Yi in 2014, and reiterated in 2016.

If these leaders, the Europeans, the Africans, and the Chinese leader would say that it is our intent to make a crash program for such a development, then this would be a signal to the young people now running away, risking their life in drowning in the Mediterranean, or ending up in a concentration camp, to participate in the economic buildup of their own country.

At the recent visit of French President Macron in Ghana, Ghana’s President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo basically told Macron that, we don’t need your development aid crumbs; what we need is a real investment. And he called on the youth that they should not try to get to Europe, but that this energy these young people have should be used to build up the country. This would require training centers, very much like what Franklin D.

Roosevelt did with the New Deal, the CCC program, training especially young people in the Civilian Conservation Corps; and then, such a summit, making such a declaration of intent, could be like the Singapore Summit, a complete turnaround.

I think we have to use, also, Xi Jinping’s notion of “sustainability.” Not to mean “appropriate technologies,” which in reality means no technology, and not sustainability which means only green solar and wind, but it means total infrastructure and industrialization as the new definition of sustainability.

African nations do not have to repeat all the levels and phases of the industrialization of the Western countries, but like China they can leapfrog to the most advanced technologies, such as focussing on high-speed trains, on magnetic levitation, on the fourth generation nuclear power. Party of this plan should be, first, a regional infrastructure investment bank, like the AIIB for Asia,— like an African Infrastructure Investment Bank—and that should be parallelled with national credit mechanisms, or national banks, to have the internal financing of the infrastructure.

Secondly, there should be an integrated network of high-speed trains, waterways between rivers and lakes, the full development of hydropower projects, the fourth general of nuclear electricity generation, and desalination of large amounts of ocean water for irrigation. Also, as the Ambassador of Ghana already said this morning, there should not be the export of raw materials, at least not only, but high-end petrochemical and metallurgy, semi-finished and finished products upgrade the value chain in the country.

In addition, there should be a Green Revolution, not in the sense of the Greenies of Europe, but in the sense of the Green Revolution of Jawaharlal Nehru, who transformed the agriculture of India in this way. You need disease- and drought-resistant plants, modern food-processing, and addition, you need certain large-scale projects, such as (next slide) the tunnel through the Strait of Gibraltar which is an eminently doable project, because a feasibility study has already been concluded; a state treaty between Spain and Morocco does exist, so one could start to build this immediately. Also, a bridge or a tunnel, as we see in the picture on my right, between Sicily and Tunisia, which could be built, with a couple of islands in between, and integrate the European development with that of Africa. And naturally, also a high-temperature reactor in South Africa should be promoted.

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(Next slide) The biggest infrastructure project ever, in the history of Africa, is Transaqua. In February of this year, there took place a big conference in Abuja, with the presidents of all of the countries of the Lake Chad Basin, who concluded that the only way to save Lake Chad, which now has dried out to about 10% of its original size, and fill it up through the water from some of the tributaries of the Congo River, from a 500 meter height, and then, through gravitation, you could bring this water all the way to Lake Chad, and not only have an inland shipping lane for all the participating countries, hydropower, large amounts of water for irrigation and refill Lake Chad. This would transport up to 100 billion cubic meters of water annually, and as I said, Lake Chad would again have the size of 25 square km — now it’s only one-tenth of that. This has been adopted by this Abuja conference and then a treaty was concluded between PowerChina, which is a large, Chinese engineering firm — which is famous for having built the Three Gorges Dam, so they are very knowledgeable and experienced in making such big projects together with the Italian engineering firm Bonifica. The Italian government at that conference, announced that they are paying EU1.5 million to have a feasibility ready in one year; and this is also a perfect model for a tripartite cooperation among African nations, China, and in this case, a European nation, Italy.

This will be not a long-term project. The leading engineer of PowerChina announced at the conference that they are confident that they can finish this project in 12 years, and it will be an industrialization in the heart of Africa which can have complete transformational character.

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(Next) People’s Daily already last August wrote an article about this, giving credit for this Transaqua project to the LaRouche movement and the Schiller Institute, because, we over the last three decades worked in many conference, advertising this to many people, and finally got the connection between PowerChina and Bonifica; and it’s now a state treaty between China and Italy. (Next) They emphasize in particular the role of our efforts in that.

This is, as I said, one of the results of our decades’ long work to help to industrialize Africa. (Next) This is a book which has a total plan for the industrialization of Africa which we already wrote in 1976, and this book was published in 1978.

So as you can see, this is not pouring from the heaven, but this movement, from the very beginning of the ideas of my husband, Lyndon LaRouche, stood for the industrial transformation of the southern hemisphere, simply because it’s the only way how you alleviate poverty, and create a good living standard for all the people.

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(Next) In 1980, with the Lagos Plan of Action was published, my husband wrote a commentary to it, which already then was a very important conceptual approach how to tackle this problem of underdevelopment, by creating a continental infrastructure plan, new cities, science cities, and the education of the youth in particular. And we campaigned for this, for over really four decades;

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(Next) The total work of this went into “The New Silk Road Becomes the World Land-Bridge,” which we published in 2014, after Xi Jinping announced the New Silk Road. And just about one week ago, we put out the World Land-Bridge report second edition, which has an updated plan for how to do this.

We conducted many conferences in Sudan, for the five countries around the Nile, how they could work together on development. And I also addressed an economic summit in Abuja in 1997.

In Europe we conducted many campaigns with the headline “The Future of Europe Lies in Africa.”

I think the application of the Singapore model is quite possible: Because the new Chancellor of Austria Sebastian Kurz, who is for one-half year the president of the European Union Council, has announced that he wants to conduct an EU-Africa summit before the end of the year. Now, Austria, while having a hard line on the migrants, on the other side, has in their coalition document of the two coalition parties in the government, a whole chapter that Austria wants to become the hub for the New Silk Road. And there are also many Central and Eastern European nations, Balkan nations, Southern European nations that all want to be the hub — for example, Spain and Portugal want to be not only the terminus of the Eurasian Silk Road towards the West, but they want to be the hub to the Portuguese- and Spanish-speaking countries around the world.

If they all cooperate on the New Silk Road this would be the way to do this, and since the refugee crisis will not go away, until you change, fundamentally, the policy towards an industrialization of Africa, I think this crisis can be turned into an chance. What the Schiller Institute is doing right now, and I would encourage all of you to help and do the same, is to have a full mobilization of all European nations and in Africa, which agree to actually put pressure on behalf of this perspective; and present the EU at this upcoming summit with the concrete outline of the necessary investments, with the participation of China, but also involve other countries, like India, Japan, even the United States, and do likewise. That if one approaches it like China — China builds a high-speed train, and I saw it with my own eyes, from Lanzhou to Urumqi in half a year — by doing it, by not simply building it one step after the other, but by starting to build it at 10 different places or even 20 different places. (Next slide) So if you had such a concrete plan you could start building it at many places at the same time.

We have outlined what projects could be in these two reports — we published one full report which is called “Extending the New Silk Road to West Asia and Africa,” which has many of these projects in it.

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(Next slide) The left picture is, if you look at the electrification by night, this is how Africa is now. If one would go in the direction I just suggested, to extend the New Silk Road to Africa through a collaborative effort of all nations, then the African night sky could like the righthand picture, which is about equivalent of what you would see in the United States or Europe.

So, I think that this would turn Africa into a modern, prosperous continent, where all citizens would enjoy a safe, and happy and long life. So if we all act together in the spirit, Africa will be the new China with African characteristics.


GBTimes Interviews Helga Zepp-LaRouche on China’s New Silk Road and Europe

Feb. 16 – GBTimes is a multimedia news site, based in Finland where it was founded by Chinese entrepreneur Zhao Yinong, and which refers to itself as a “bridge between China and the rest of the world.” It published the following interview with Helga Zepp-LaRouche on Feb. 16:

China’s ambitious plan to link itself with Europe and Africa through new Silk Road trade routes has so far received a mixed welcome in Europe. The Belt and Road initiative, the brainchild of Chinese President Xi Jinping, proposes to boost trade and economic integration across Eurasia through over $1 trillion worth of investments in railways, ports, power plants and other infrastructure links. The initiative has been officially endorsed by Central and Eastern European countries, many of which are hoping that Chinese investment could create jobs and improve infrastructure.

But Western European countries have been more cautious, with British Prime Minister Theresa May declining to sign up to the initiative during her recent trip to Beijing and French President Emmanuel Macron warning during his trip to China that the New Silk Road cannot be “one-way.” There are also concerns in Brussels about a lack of reciprocity in trade with China and increasing Chinese investment in critical infrastructure in Europe.

The German-based Schiller Institute, however, has for the past several years been campaigning for the Belt and Road initiative in Europe by organizing hundreds of conferences on the topic. Helga Zepp-LaRouche, the institute’s founder and president, talked to gbtimes.com about the initiative and why she believes Europe should embrace it.

Q: What is the Schiller Institute?

HELGA ZEPP-LAROUCHE: The Schiller Institute was founded in 1984 as a think tank, with the main idea behind it being that peace and order in the world would only function if each nation would relate to the best cultural tradition of the others and vice versa. One of the focuses was to fight for a just new world economic order, something like in the tradition of the Nonaligned Movement, especially inspired by the ideas of my husband, Mr. Lyndon LaRouche, and secondly to fight for a renaissance of classical culture. I gave it the name of [German philosopher] Friedrich Schiller because his image of man was the most noble and beautiful one and I thought such a conception was urgently needed in the political realm.

Q: How did you first get to know China?

ZEPP-LAROUCHE: I went to China for the first time in 1971 on a cargo ship, which was repaired in Shanghai. So, I had plenty of occasions to visit many factories, children’s palaces, and the countryside. I also went to Shenzhen, Qingdao and Beijing, and that left a very lasting impression on me because this was in the middle of the Cultural Revolution (1966-1976) and China was very much different then. But it started a deep interest on my side in Chinese philosophy and culture. And then I was also inspired by the changes which took place in China after the reforms of Deng Xiaoping, and I visited China many times in the 1990s and the 2000s, and especially after Xi Jinping announced the new Silk Road. And I could see the dramatic changes and the economic miracle which China has undergone. I feel very privileged that I have sort of personally witnessed the unbelievable transformation of China over almost 50 years.

Q: You mentioned President Xi Jinping who proposed the Belt and Road initiative in 2013. The Schiller Institute has been very supportive of this initiative. Why is this?

ZEPP-LAROUCHE: First, the Belt and Road initiative is presently the most important strategic initiative on the planet because it proposes what Xi Jinping calls a community for shared future of humanity. The idea of one humanity is a perfect conception for overcoming geopolitics, which was the reason for two world wars and, in the age of nuclear weapons, can lead to a terrible catastrophe just as big. If you look at the incredible progress this initiative has made in the five years since it was announced, you already see a tremendous transformation where the developing countries in Africa, Latin America and Asia, for the first time, have legitimate hope to overcome poverty and under-development. It just happens that the Belt and Road initiative is very much in accordance with proposals my husband and myself have made during the last decades. After the Soviet Union disintegrated in 1991 we proposed something that we called the Eurasian land bridge, which was the idea to connect the Eurasian peoples and industries through development corridors. The Chinese government picked up on the proposal to organize an international conference in Beijing in 1996, in which I participated as speaker. Already at that point China considered the development of the Eurasian land bridge a strategic initiative, but this was put on hold due to the Asian financial crisis of 1997. We were then extremely happy when Xi Jinping announced this policy in 2013 — with China’s economic power all these plans can now be realized. Why do you think the Chinese are interested in this idea of bridging the Eurasian continent? China has developed its own economic model of lifting its population out of poverty and it also wants to contribute to eliminating poverty on the world scale. I think that is a very different approach to many other countries. There are now only 30 million poor people left in China. In comparison, there are 90 million poor people in the European Union and more than 50 million people who are officially poor in the United States, but no clear plans to eliminate poverty in totality. So, you are saying China is currently the only major country that has a global vision? Yes. I participated in the Belt and Road forum in Beijing last year and everyone who participated in this conference had a distinct impression that we were witnessing the beginning of a new era of mankind. At the 19th National Congress of the Chinese Communist Party, Xi promoted the goal of having a fully developed, modern, culturally advanced, happy country by 2050 — not only happiness for the Chinese people, but for all the people in the world. Normally politicians in the West think at best until the next election, and I have not heard from any Western leader a plan on how to uplift the entire human species in the next 30, 40, 50 years. The idea to create happiness for the people as a policy goal was last heard during the American revolution when it was set in the American Declaration of Independence that it is a fundamental right to have life, freedom and happiness. This is a notion coming from Latin [sic — she said Leibniz] and it means the ability of people to develop their full potential. I have seen in China on many occasions that people really think that way. They have the idea that there is no limit to their ability to self-perfect to improve society and relations between nations, and it’s a completely different spirit to what you find anywhere in the West.
Q: All Central and Eastern European countries have officially joined the Belt and Road Initiative, but many Western countries including the U.K., France and Germany have been more cautious about it. Why do you think this is the case? ZEPP-LAROUCHE: When certain politicians in these countries say they want to insist on standards and rules, and that they don’t want the spreading of Chinese investment in Europe, I think it’s a question of geopolitical control. The EU for example could have developed Central and Eastern Europe, the Balkans, but they didn’t. When China then comes and starts to build the kind of infrastructure that the EU did not build, these countries are happy and want to go with the new Silk Road. And that causes some people who believe in geopolitics to see it as a threat. The present Western system is based not on the common good as a primary orientation, but on monetarist profit-making. This system benefits those who speculate and those who run the banking system. But it leads to such things like the 2008 financial crisis, which was a systemic crisis, and nothing has been done since other than quantitative easing and pumping money.

Q: But do you think China itself has overcome geopolitics?

ZEPP-LAROUCHE: I know that that is not the view of many politicians in the West, but I think assumptions about China are just people’s projections of what they themselves think. I am not a naive person — I have studied this in depth and looked at it closely — and I do think that China does not plan to dominate the world with its system. The Chinese model is more attractive, and many countries want to repeat what it has been doing, but I don’t think China wants to impose its values. My explanation for this is China’s Confucian tradition. For example, Christians are supposed to win other people over to Christianity, but Confucianism does not do that. Confucianism is perfectly happy to live in coexistence. And if you look at the entire history of China, you never had religious war. You had Buddhism, Confucianism, Taoism and Christianity all living in a perfect ecumenical harmony. So, I think in Chinese history, you don’t find anything which would give credibility to the claim that China is not doing what they say. I think they are doing exactly what they say they are doing and they mean it.

Q: What would it mean for Western European countries to join the Belt and Road Initiative?

ZEPP-LAROUCHE: It would mean that there would be a shift towards the real economy. Right now, you have this money-makes-money philosophy, but if you look at even an advanced country like Germany, there’s a tremendous backlog in infrastructure. There are warnings by some of the logistic organizations that Germany is about to lose its standard as a location for industrial development because of the collapse of the infrastructure. So, if European countries would join the new Silk Road it would mean that they could basically renew their infrastructure like China has done, and to build fast trains among all major cities. With the policy of the Troika [European Commission, European Central Bank and International Monetary Fund], the industries and the economies of the Southern European countries were destroyed. Now you see that with the advantages that come from Chinese investment in the Piraeus port and other projects in Greece, it’s going upwards. And with the EU, it went downwards. The same is true for Italy, Spain and Portugal. Europe could also participate with China in the reconstruction of Southwest Asia, of Syria, of Iraq, because you must bring economic development to these countries if terrorism is supposed to be eliminated. You have to give young people a future which they don’t have right now. It would mean you could solve the refugee problem in a human way.

Q: But do you think that some Europeans might be cautious about the growing Chinese influence because they think they might have to someday accept the same kind of restrictions on freedoms that China has at home?

ZEPP-LAROUCHE: Yes, but if people are worried that they may lose some of their hedonistic impulses — well, that might not be altogether such a bad thing. Because what we are seeing right now is a decadent society with all the violence, pornography and drug addiction. You have an opium epidemic in the United States, which is contributing to the fact that life expectancy is going down for the first time. If there is any parameter for the functioning of an economy, it is the life expectancy. If an economy is doing well, it’s increasing and obviously it’s an indicator that there is something fundamentally wrong if it’s going down because of suicide, alcoholism and drug addiction. On the other hand, there was just a poll made in Germany among 42 firms which were taken over by Chinese investors. In all cases, the management and the employees said that it was a positive thing that the Chinese took over, instead of speculators or hedge funds. I think some of these changes that come with more Chinese investment and influence would be beneficial. I would even go so far to agree with Leibniz, who said already in the 17th century that because of the superior morality of the Chinese, one should import Chinese missionaries to teach morality to the Europeans.

Q: So, you are optimistic that the acceptance of the Belt and Road initiative is growing in Europe eventually?

ZEPP-LAROUCHE: We have found that all people who do business in China or who have travelled to China or who are married with a Chinese person, are all positive, and they know that what China is doing is a historic transformation of humanity. The Belt and Road initiative is not just about economics; it’s not just about infrastructure from A to B, but it is really a new paradigm. And what I mean by new paradigm is a new way of understanding what is the role of humanity. We are the only creative species who can invent new technologies and sciences and change the mode of our existence. It’s not the nature of man to be greedy, to chase for stock market gains and try to exploit and dominate others. It’s the nature of man to develop our own potential to the fullest so that we can contribute to the development of the human species. And the new paradigm will be that more and more people, as time goes by, will be able to realize their true potential as human beings.

https://gbtimes.com/interview-with-helga-zepp-larouche-on-chinas-new-silk-road-and-europe


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