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International Peace Coalition Meeting June 21: Is Putin’s Peace Proposal the Last Chance for Humanity?

by Kevin Gribbroek

“If we would come out of this discussion with a clarion call to spread the news about the Putin peace proposal—because it’s not discussed in the media—if we would come out with some endorsement of this proposal, I think we would take a giant step forward.”—Helga Zepp-LaRouche

The 55th consecutive meeting of the International Peace Coalition (IPC) was convened today with a major focus on the June 14 proposal that Russian President Vladimir Putin presented before Foreign Ministry senior staff, for a new Eurasian security architecture as the foundation for global peace. His proposal is not exclusive in any way—NATO members are welcome to join—and is based on China’s Five Principles of Peaceful Co-Existence. Given the deafening silence of the mainstream media regarding the true content of the proposal, which to date has been scoffed at by Western “leaders,” the intention of the IPC meeting was to serve as a platform to launch a worldwide campaign to bring awareness to the international community that this proposal may be the last chance to derail World War III.

Helga Zepp-LaRouche, founder of the Schiller Institute and initiator of the IPC, opened the meeting with her observation that a growing number of people have a terrible feeling that the “war machine is coming closer and closer, and that the situation is escalating by the day.” People such as Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić have warned that war may break out within 3 to 5 months. Zepp-LaRouche expressed her belief that this is one of the most dangerous periods in history, and in that context presented an elaboration of Putin’s proposal. She cited a statement by Russia’s Permanent Representative to the UN Office in Geneva Gennady Gatilov, who said that the Euro-Atlantic security system has completely failed, and that Putin’s June 14 proposal is the foundation for a new global security architecture in the era of multipolarity.

Zepp-LaRouche continued by pointing out the fact that there is a remarkable “affinity” between what President Putin is proposing, and what she herself and the Schiller Institute have been fighting for since the outbreak of the special military operation: namely her Ten Principles of a New International Security and Development Architecture. Commenting on a recent statement by Russian economist Sergey Glazyev, in which he says that “the cause of the military escalation is the bankruptcy of the Western financial system, which will sooner or later erupt in a full-scale social and economic catastrophe if the United States insists to keep the system up at all costs,” she noted that this is exactly what American physical economist Lyndon LaRouche had been forecasting since 1971: that Nixon’s abandonment of the fixed exchange rate system would lead to a new depression, a new fascism and the danger of world war. Were war to break out with Russia, Europe would have no way to survive, and therefore the population must be mobilized to stand against this.

An appeal to support Putin’s peace initiative, drafted by the East German Board of Trustees of Associations (Ostdeutsches Kuratorium von Verbänden, or OKV), was read to the meeting participants by IPC co-moderator Anastasia Battle. Helga Zepp-LaRouche voiced her full support for this initiative and at the conclusion of today’s meeting, the participants in the meeting overwhelmingly supported the OKV appeal. The IPC will shortly be releasing a full statement of support.

Joachim Bonatz, Vice President of the OKV, followed by expressing his conviction that only Russia and the NATO block can stop the conflict, and that is why the OKV is supporting Putin’s proposal. President Putin has warned that if the West continues its objective of a strategic defeat of Russia, Russia may be forced to change its no-first-use nuclear doctrine. Thus, a unified approach is necessary to build support for the Putin initiative to prevent an escalation of the war.

Ray McGovern, a former CIA analyst and co-founder of the Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS), began his remarks by stating that Putin, in his speech of June 14, “took off the rhetorical gloves”: “We have come dangerously close to the point of no return. Calls to inflict a strategic defeat on Russia … despite the fact that Russia possesses the largest arsenal of nuclear weapons may demonstrate the extreme recklessness of Western politicians,” said Putin. McGovern’s assessment is that the intention of Russia’s recently signed mutual defense pact with North Korea is deterrence: If the Biden administration, in a last ditch gambit, tries to escalate the war before the U.S. Presidential election—perhaps with the use of low-yield nuclear weapons—Russia can respond not only in the West, but in the East as well.

Donald Ramotar, former President of Guyana (2011-2015), stated his belief that the loss of international influence by the West is driving its actions, including the seizing of Russia’s assets, and that this is causing a growing number of nations to “migrate” towards the BRICS. These nations want to have greater freedom to deal with their own affairs without fear of sanctions. He voiced his full support for Putin’s proposal, characterizing it as the only sensible proposal at this time that has the potential to prevent a third world war.

Colonel Alain Corvez (ret.), former advisor to the French Ministry of the Interior, in agreement with prior speakers, stressed the importance of the Putin proposal, and the potential it has to open the door for negotiations. The problem is that the leaders of the West, particularly the United States, are “nihilists” who want to preserve their hegemony. This is the root of both the conflict in Gaza and in Ukraine. Because the leaders are irrational and corrupt, therefore it is up to the people to act.

Jacques Cheminade, President of the Solidarité et Progrès political party in France, began by commenting on the recent EU Parliament elections, characterizing the outcome as a “wave of discontent against Macron.” French President Macron is finished, but the question is, what’s next? The problem is that all the other parties are for war. That is why Cheminade has decided to run as a candidate in the upcoming French legislative elections—his campaign fully endorsed by Helga Zepp-LaRouche. Cheminade stated his intention to put pressure on all other candidates in France to agree on three fundamental points: no more delivery of weapons to Ukraine; dissolution of NATO; and peace based on common development.

Zepp-LaRouche, in response to a question during the discussion period, warned that we are dangerously close to a “tipping point”: Experts such as Steven Starr and Ted Postol have stated that the time leaders have to make decisions on the launching of nuclear weapons has shortened to such an extent that “we are hanging by a thin thread.” Her belief is that one of the most dangerous mythologies in the West is that “Putin is bluffing.” Putin has shown remarkable patience, but that does not mean that Russia does not have red lines. If people were aware of “how few minutes there are between us and extinction, people would not sleep anymore.”

In her closing remarks, Zepp-LaRouche once again emphasized the importance of supporting the OKV’s appeal to endorse Putin’s peace initiative. She expressed her conviction that only if there is a move to the spirit of the Treaty of Westphalia, based on securing the interests of every single country on the planet, will there be a chance for peace: “Putin’s proposal is the greatest approximation to [the Treaty of Westphalia]…. It’s a suggestion to go back to diplomacy; a very serious suggestion to go back to negotiations instead of war.” And that is why his proposal could be the last chance to save civilization.

International Peace Coalition: ‘It May Alter Your Servility Toward the Hegemon’

The International Peace Coalition (IPC) continued its second year of weekly international online meetings today, with opening comments by Helga Zepp-LaRouche, founder of the Schiller Institute, who reported on the Emergency Press Conference that was held in Washington, D.C. on June 12. She had monitored the responses to the conference, and noted the worldwide concern about the decline of diplomacy, which has been superseded by violence and extortion as instruments of foreign policy.

Even Western media have been completely cynical about the recent G7 meeting, held in a luxury resort in Italy’s southern Puglia region. Except for hosting Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni, every participating head of state was a lame duck of one sort or another. The tone of the meeting was uniformly bellicose, and Zepp-LaRouche presented her assessment of the plan to use the interest on frozen Russian financial holdings to leverage a $50 billion bond to arm Ukraine (because confiscating the entire $300 billion in frozen assets would be the “death knell for the financial system”): “This is obviously very good for the pockets of the military-industrial complex,” she said, but “given the fragility of the financial system, all of these things could trigger reactions which are not part of the calculation.” She discussed the almost surreal nature of how the Western media are covering international relations, such as Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s vaunted “Peace Formula” conference in Switzerland, which excludes Russia and therefore can’t possibly work. “You can see how all the news is being twisted,” she said, and stressed the importance of the June 15-16 Schiller Institute conference.

Advice for Peace Activists

Political analyst Garland Nixon provocatively asserted that, in a sense, nuclear weapons are already in use; he gave the example of the use of depleted uranium rounds, and urged his listeners to “research Fallujah.” He added that similar weapons were sent to Ukraine, but many were apparently blown up in a weapons depot before they could be used. He told the participants that the ruling elites will not respond to reason, so they must be forced by the masses to act. He referred to “the puppet avatars whom they put out, such as Joe Biden.” He recommended to peace activists that they build a long-term infrastructure for activism, because “they’re planning their next conflict…. This is about getting Russia out of the way, so they can get to China.”

Jack Gilroy, a long-time peace activist and member of Pax Christi, described how that organization started in March 1945. He said that the religion of Christianity preaches nonviolence, but regrettably “has become the greatest killer of any religion in the world.” He emphasized the importance of maintaining the intensity of the recent student activism in the U.S., saying that students “may be away from their campuses, but they’re not away from their phones.” He recommended a focus on social media, where there are now 25-30 major platforms. Although there is good work being done on stopping the genocide in Gaza, “even the students are not awake on the issue of nuclear weapons.”

Gilroy provided colorful anecdotes from his life of peace activism. He described life as a school teacher during the 1960s, when people were more conscious of the threat posed by nuclear weapons. His young students who participated in “duck and cover” drills knew that these were nonsensical and were offering no real protection; one of his students became so frightened that she swallowed a bottle of aspirin in the restroom and had to be rushed to the hospital. But in those days, at least there was an open channel of communication between the U.S. and the Soviet Union; today we don’t have the red phone, nor any cultural exchange.

Disillusioned by the U.S. government, Gilroy’s family moved to Australia, where Jack found himself organizing students to protest French nuclear testing in the Pacific. He later resumed his work in the U.S., where Jack was videotaped dressed as Santa Claus, climbing over the fence at an armaments factory with a bag of gifts for defense workers. He concluded by praising the Schiller Institute’s June 12 emergency press conference and urging the widest possible circulation of its press release.

Helga Zepp-LaRouche responded to Garland Nixon by saying that we must convince the people of the U.S. and Europe that the nations of the Global South are our natural allies. If we can work with the BRICS, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, and related bodies, then there is reason for optimism. She then invited Jack Gilroy to come to Germany and straighten out the wayward Catholics and Protestants there, including many of their top leaders.

During the discussion period, one guest who described himself as a “Simple German” reported that he has become remoralized to learn that he has co-thinkers around the world.

New York independent congressional candidate Jose Vega gave a report on the Nov. 5 elections. He mentioned that in the Bronx congressional district that borders his own, AIPAC is spending over $11 million in an effort to “primary” Rep. Jamaal Bowman. Vega stressed that he is not endorsing Bowman, who is very wrong on Ukraine, but praised him for taking a stand on Gaza. “Nobody should be allowed to just buy a congressional district.” said Vega. “These elections should be decided by voters, not by people who have deep pockets.”

A report came from a German participant who had worked in a senior position for the NATO political affairs division, during which he had participated, beginning in 1979, in the Wintex “crisis management” exercises, which included nuclear war gaming. He reported that each time the scenarios were “gamed,” Europe was always destroyed. He recalled one exercise where an American general was heard to say, “Unfortunately, in the Fulda Gap, the German villages are only half a kiloton away from each other.”

A correspondent for Unity News in the U.K. reported that the mainstream media and government all say that soon there will be conscription there, and British youth will go to Ukraine to fight. She said that the majority of Britons have no idea and think that this is a joke. “As independent media, we find it very difficult to speak outside of our bubble … to get any traction,” she said, and she also praised the June 12 press conference.

IPC co-moderator Dennis Small recommended that everyone watch the 22-minute exchange between Putin and the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) moderator Sergey Karaganov on the issue of Russia’s nuclear arms policy. He added that the greatest danger is that if nuclear war proceeds, everything beautiful that humanity has created will disappear. He quoted from Nikolai Ostrovsky’s book, How the Steel Was Tempered: “Man’s dearest possession is his life, and since it is given him but once, he must live so as to feel no regrets for years without purpose; so live as not to be with shame of a cowardly and trivial past.”

In her concluding remarks, Helga Zepp-LaRouche underscored the importance of the report given by a German, who had participated in NATO war games in Europe, describing the actual thinking in these nuclear games that Europe does not play a role. “That is absolutely something which people should really come to grips with, because once you realize that you are just a pawn on a chessboard, dispensable to be thrown away, it may alter your servility towards the hegemon.” She added that because nuclear war threatens everyone in the world, “it makes everyone automatically a world citizen.”

International Peace Coalition Meeting, No. 53: ‘Red Lines Are Being Crossed by the Day’

by Daniel Platt

The International Peace Coalition (IPC) began its second year of weekly online meetings today, with a strategic overview presented by Schiller Institute founder Helga Zepp-LaRouche. She announced that former Marine intelligence officer and UN weapons inspector Scott Ritter, who has participated in IPC meetings, would be taking part in a panel discussion on the question of the demonization of Russia today, as part of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, drawing 19,000 participants from some 130 countries. Ritter’s presentation would be virtual, because, in an attempt to prevent him from participating, representatives of the U.S. State Department had stopped him from boarding his plane at JFK Airport and seized his passport.

This shocking event takes place in the midst of a rapidly deteriorating strategic situation. “Red lines are being crossed by the day,” said Zepp-LaRouche. “The number of European heads of state warning that Europe is preparing for war is growing.” The Anglophile faction, on the other hand, is showing its ugly face, including at the June 6 bellicose commemoration of the D-Day Normandy landings, 80 years ago, that were aimed to stop Hitler. Zepp-LaRouche warned of “the complete transformation of many parties in Europe into war parties.”

Meanwhile, Russian warships will arrive in Havana next week for military exercises in the Caribbean. Zepp-LaRouche said that that will remind people of the Cuban Missile Crisis, noting that NATO forces are encroaching on Russia’s border. Another grim development is the announcement of Biden’s “upgraded” nuclear weapons strategy. “I can’t imagine what a more assertive strategy is supposed to be,” commented Zepp-LaRouche. She relayed a warning from retired German Gen. Harald Kujat that that could become the tragedy of the 21st Century, just as two world wars were the tragedy of the 20th Century.

On the global economy, Zepp-LaRouche cited Pope Francis saying that mismanaged globalization is depriving the Global South of hope for the future. She also called attention to an interview she gave to TASS two days ago, in which she agreed with Putin that the outcome of the Presidential election in the U.S. will make no difference, if the U.S. does not bother to take care of its own actual interests.

Prof. Steven Starr, an expert on nuclear war, who has spoken at many IPC meetings and Schiller conferences, offered a PowerPoint presentation spelling out the ghastly consequences of a nuclear exchange between NATO and Russia. He compared the entry-level nuclear weapon which was used on Hiroshima, rated at 15,000 tons of TNT equivalent, to today’s thermonuclear weapons, which are 7 to 85 times more powerful. Submarine-launched nuclear missiles from either side can reach their targets in 7 to 10 minutes, leaving government leaders little time to consider a response.

Starr went on to report recent developments in weaponry. He recently wrote a book on the effects of electromagnetic pulse (EMP); one nuclear detonation could destroy our entire power grid. Russia now possesses hypersonic missiles that fly at 20 times the speed of sound. They have been used in Ukraine, and despite NATO propaganda, none has been shot down. Once launched, strategic missiles cannot be recalled. Peer-reviewed studies, since 2007-08, have confirmed the “nuclear winter” theory: Because of the precipitous drop in global temperatures caused by massive amounts of smoke in the upper atmosphere, the aftermath of a thermonuclear exchange would affect not just people in the target area: Most humans and animals in the world would starve.

In light of all this, Starr said, the eagerness of the neocons to flirt with nuclear war can only be characterized as “incredible incompetence and ignorance combined with hubris…. I really wonder if anyone in Washington knows this anymore,” he mused, and concluded his remarks by apologizing for “this terrible presentation.”

Starr was followed by LaRouche independent Congressional candidate in New York’s CD 15 Jose Vega, who logged on from the campaign trail in the Bronx. He reported on a successful event which he had held the previous night, which featured popular comedian and political commentator Jimmy Dore, as well as the Due Dissidence podcasting team. Some 100 people were in attendance, about half of whom had helped petition to successfully put Vega’s name on the ballot. He asserted that people in the U.S. are effectively living under fascism today. “Instead of funding all these wars … we could have mutual economic cooperation going on,” he said. “The future is watching what we’re doing right now.”

Vega was followed by LaRouche Party U.S. Senate candidate in New York Diane Sare, who paraphrased the poet Percy Shelley, saying, “We are in a revolutionary moment where the poets among us can become the legislators of the world.”

During the discussion, LaRouche organization leader Dennis Speed brought up recent revelations of Israeli social media bots which are attempting to control the “narrative,” and reported that AIPAC has spent $8 million attempting to defeat New York Congressman Jamaal Bowman, who represents the Bronx CD 16 district bordering Jose Vega’s.

Participants from Argentina and Germany reported on anti-war events they are organizing. Then Jacques Cheminade, leader of LaRouche movement in France, commented on the June 6 D-Day celebration in his country, calling it “the most obscene and frightening show,” which was being cynically staged to drum up enthusiasm for the rapidly collapsing Ukraine war project.

EIR Intelligence Director Dennis Small reviewed the driving force behind the war danger: The fantastic indebtedness of the Anglosphere, driven by the quadrillions of dollars in the financial derivatives bubble.

Helga Zepp-LaRouche used her concluding remarks to respond to some of the questions which came up during the discussion. In response to a question from a participant in Ibero-America as to why leaders of Western Europe are “walking like sheep” behind the U.S. President, she said that the best thing you can do, is to ask as loudly as possible: Why is Western Europe going down the path of self-destruction? She recalled that her late husband, EIR founder Lyndon LaRouche, had charged that after World War II, morality was replaced by consumerism. She said that this should not be confused with the need to build up the physical economy, which is needed to offer the population a decent living standard.

In response to another participant, who cited an article in Israel’s anti-war +972 Magazine on the role of Artificial Intelligence in targeting Palestinians, she agreed that this is an important topic, adding that NATO is using AI to control the narrative; “free speech is out, you cannot have a different opinion.”

A clergywoman and activist had raised, in response to Dennis Small’s explication of the debt crisis, the Biblical concept of a Jubilee to cancel debts. Zepp-LaRouche responded, “I fully agree with a worldwide Jubilee.” She added that in addition to the cancellation of unpayable debt, especially derivatives, you need Lyndon LaRouche’s Four Laws reorganization of the banking and financial system, including a reinstatement of the Glass-Steagall legislation to separate real banking from financial speculation. She said that we must tell the banks to get their books in order, and if they can’t, they should declare bankruptcy. Then, fresh credit must be limited to finance real physical production. Pope Francis has mentioned next year’s Jubilee 2025, for which he called for a new security and development architecture.

Zepp-LaRouche said that a video of Professor Starr’s presentation will be produced, and that we should get it out to all elected officials from city officials up to U.S. Congress and national parliaments. She concluded by saying that everyone should stay tuned for the announcement of a press conference next Wednesday, June 12, with Scott Ritter and others.

International Peace Coalition Meeting: Intelligence Specialists Speak Out as War Looms

by Daniel Platt

May 24, 2024 (EIRNS)—This week’s 51st meeting of the International Peace Coalition (IPC) saw a fruitful colloquy among some of the U.S.’s foremost intelligence experts: former CIA analyst Larry C. Johnson; former U.S. diplomat, CIA official, and Islamic scholar Graham Fuller; and former CIA analyst and Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS) co-founder Ray McGovern; all in dialogue with Schiller Institute founder Helga Zepp-LaRouche’s strategic analysis—and proposed solutions—presented in her opening remarks. (See extended transcript of opening remarks.)

Helga Zepp-LaRouche observed that we are in a time when “history becomes more dense,” and profound change is proceeding at an accelerating pace, even as the danger of nuclear war rises. The International Court of Justice (ICJ) today issued an emergency order to halt Israel’s attack on Rafah. “The question is, will that be enforced, and if so, how?” Zepp-LaRouche asked. “It seems to be dawning on some people in the Western establishment that if you apply a double standard … the legality of the system may be there, but it is about to lose its legitimacy.” This week Ireland, Spain, and Norway joined the list of 140 UN member nations that have recognized the State of Palestine. If Israel continues to flout the ICJ’s binding orders to stop the genocide in Gaza—as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has again sworn they will do—then Israel could be suspended from UN membership.

Looking at other theaters of strategic confrontation carrying the danger of escalation into nuclear war, Zepp-LaRouche asked whether the attempt on the life of Slovakian Prime Minister Robert Fico was made by a “lone assassin.” There are indications that he may have had assistance. Large influxes of money have flowed into NGOs, not only in Slovakia, but in Georgia, Serbia, and Hungary as well, whose leaders are all critical of Ukraine war funding, and are speaking out against the perpetrators of the destabilization operations. Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Kobakhidze posted on Twitter/X that he received a threat from an EU Commission member, warning that he could meet the same fate as Fico.

In Asia, newly inaugurated Taiwanese President Lai Ching-te gave an inaugural address in which he insisted that Taiwan is “a sovereign independent nation.” In response, China held military exercises around Taiwan, as a clear signal that they will not tolerate secession masquerading as “independence.” Zepp-LaRouche reminded the IPC participants that for decades, “One China” has been internationally recognized. She concluded by saying that the next six months will be decisive, and that we in the IPC, along with like-minded forces around the world, must put a different narrative, a different solution on the agenda, in the tradition of the Peace of Westphalia, using the Oasis Plan.

Larry C. Johnson contrasted present U.S. foreign policy with the Nixon period, when, despite the Cold War, we could actually talk to Russia and China. Now, “The United States is like a 3-year-old child with a hammer,” and everything looks like a nail. He warned that if this continues, “the U.S. will implode upon itself…. It is pretending that it can project military force in three theaters simultaneously.” Our Navy is completely vulnerable to the hypersonic weapons that Russia and China both possess. Johnson insisted that “people in Asia, Africa and South America are sick and tired of being bullied by the United States.”

Graham Fuller followed and said, “Larry and I have both toiled in the vineyards of intelligence.” Fuller said that the U.S. is unable to face the reality of its relative decline in the world. Referencing the “complicated, perhaps triangular relationship” in the Middle East between Iran, Saudi Arabia, and Israel, he observed that China had remarkably defused tension between the Saudis and Iran, which “took the wind out of the sails of the argument that ‘The Iranians are coming! The Iranians are coming!’”

Fuller concluded by saying, “It’s a cliché to say crises promote opportunities,” but he offered the hope that this will shake people up to come up with some new ideas.

Helga Zepp-LaRouche intervened to insist that it is our job to offer those new ideas. The Western nations act as if there were no tomorrow, no consequences, but “the way out would be so absolutely, breathtakingly easy.” She identified the expanding BRICS organization and the Oasis Plan as the path to a solution. None of the Global South nations has called the U.S. the enemy. We could work with them.

Ray McGovern recalled that he had started working as a CIA analyst in January 1964, as a specialist in Sino-Soviet relations. China and Russia “were squeezing each other….” Now “they’re in a fraternal embrace that won’t stop.” He has been surprised by many things, including the Russian military operation in Ukraine and the Chinese support for it; and their announcement of tactical nuclear weapons exercises. “None were pleasant surprises; I’m just afraid of what the next one might be.”

Meeting co-moderator Dennis Speed observed that these “surprises” represent the essence of intelligence work: the careful examination of “what doesn’t add up,” adding that the analyst must “poke reality with a stick,” and change the analysis as necessary. Read the EIR Daily Alert every day!

During the discussion, one of the first comments centered on the overriding importance of Lyndon LaRouche’s breakthroughs in economics, and praise of LaRouche by leading Russian economist Sergey Glazyev. Independent Congressional candidate Jose Vega, who has just successfully filed three times the required number of signatures required to attain ballot access, reported on his visits to New York campus encampments protesting the genocide in Gaza. LaRouche movement organizer Bill Ferguson reported on the May 23 Harvard commencement exercises: Trucks were driving around with neon signs denouncing as anti-Semites the 1,000 students who walked out to support 13 seniors barred from graduation over their role in the Gaza protests. LaRouche organizers displayed a banner: “Peace through Development: Build LaRouche’s Oasis Plan.” After the LaRouche organizers choral performance of peace songs, a policeman approached, saying “You’ve got really killer voices,” encouraging them to keep it up.

An Indian journalist elaborated on the importance of unity among the three, largest and founding members of the BRICS—Russia, India, China (RIC)—and pointed to the International North-South Transport Corridor (INSTC), extending from St. Petersburg through Iran and Central Asia, across the Arabian Sea to Mumbai in India, as an example of regional cooperation, notwithstanding the tensions in the region. Helga Zepp-LaRouche concurred: “The anchor of stability is the connectivity projects,” such as the BRICS and BRICS-Plus.

Other participants expressed anxiety about the U.S. presidential election. One person suggested that Biden might be the lesser evil; another stated the opposite. Co-moderator Dennis Small said that the very concept of the “lesser evil” comes from Aristotle, who did not believe in the Good. Throw Aristotle in the trash, and read Plato, to learn how to think from a higher vantage point from which the Good is attainable, was his advice. Zepp-LaRouche suggested support for independent candidates like Jose Vega and Diane Sare, concurring with Sare that no candidate running is qualified to be President of the United States. She added, “I would not bet the fate of the world on these election processes.” The confiscation of Russian assets may trigger an unprecedented financial crisis which will upset the applecart. Our efforts should concentrate on the proposed new international security and development architecture and the Oasis Plan. Echoing the comments of a participant from Mali, she said that we must “put the One Humanity first.”

Become the Good Samaritan – International Peace Coalition Meeting #50

by Daniel Platt

May 17, 2024 (EIRNS)—Helga Zepp-LaRouche, founder and chairwoman of the Schiller Institute, opened this week’s 50th consecutive meeting of the International Peace Coalition by discussing the implications of the attempted assassination of Slovakia’s Prime Minister Robert Fico yesterday. She referenced the assessment of Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, that the crime must be seen in the context of the Western preparation for a war with Russia. Zepp-LaRouche reviewed the press attacks on Fico by various international functionaries of the Anglosphere, who had charged him with “polarization” because Fico questioned the utility of the sanctions against Russia; suggested that the Ukraine war began because of Nazi elements terrorizing the Donbass; and pointed out that NATO broke its 1990 promise to the Russian Federation not to move Eastward.

She reported that Fico’s would-be assassin belonged to an organization called “Progressive Slovakia,” which needs to be investigated further. Was he really a “lone assassin”? There is now a rapid degeneration of democracy in many European states, where free speech is increasingly denounced. U.S. Secretary of State Blinken has just said, in response to Russian statements, that Ukraine can do “whatever they decide” with U.S. weapons, but “all the weapons in the world cannot compensate for the fact that they are running out of soldiers,” insisted Zepp-LaRouche.

She went on to underscore the significance of the Putin/Xi strategic partnership, which is causing conniptions among neoliberals and neocons. It is also extremely important that South Africa went back to the International Court of Justice to demand that Israel implement ICJ’s rulings.

Next, Fr. Harry Bury, Coordinator of the Nonviolent Cities Project of St. Paul, Minnesota, and a leading member of Pax Christi and the Association of U.S. Catholic Priests, reported that Catholic bishops and nuns in Washington, Oregon and Montana have put forward a peace plan for Gaza, which calls for a ceasefire, the mutual return of hostages, and a two-state solution. Significantly, the plan also calls for the re-development of Israel and Gaza. The latter converges on the Oasis Plan originally proposed in 1975 by economist Lyndon LaRouche. Father Bury emphasized that the Oasis Plan means not only development for Southwest Asia, but for the entire world. Reflecting on the economic experience of post-World War II history, he observed that the 1948-1952 Marshall Plan in Europe, and the 1945-1952 occupation and reconstruction of Japan, had worked: there is no mass emigration today from Germany and Japan. He concluded by saying, “Peace is a good investment.”

While he was not able to attend, Prof. Jeffrey Sachs, an American economist and public policy analyst, provided a video, conducted by IPC member Mike Billington, which was shown. “The political solution is that there should be a State of Palestine, and it should live alongside the State of Israel,” he said. But the U.S. veto in the UN Security Council is the obstacle to this. The nations of the region are ready for peace with Israel, but they don’t want Palestine to live under an apartheid regime, or worse, a genocidal one. The American people and the world want Palestine to have rights. The U.S. government is hurting both itself, and Israel, which is seen as “a war crime state protected by the United States.” “There is a water crisis and desalination is the way forward,” Sachs said, in reference to the proposed Oasis Plan.

Sachs warned that “Israel is absolutely radicalized, extremist, compared to 25 years ago.” He said that we need a return to the 1967 borders, and an economic framework that will go along with that. He explained the importance of Pope Francis’ October 2020 encyclical Fratelli Tutti! (“On Fraternity and Social Friendship”). Pope Francis insists that the only way the world can be saved is for everyone to be like the Good Samaritan, opening the encyclical, that St. Francis “declares blessed all those who love their brother ‘as much when he is far away from him as when he is with him.’”

In conclusion, Sachs marveled at the fact that Biden has not tried to speak to Putin even once since 2021: “That’s the telltale sign of the recklessness and stupidity of U.S. policy.” The U.S. does not have the idea of diplomacy: “We have a Secretary of State, but we don’t have a diplomat.”

Dr. Mubarak Awad, founder of Nonviolence International, provided an update on Gaza and the Israel-Palestine conflict. He described himself as a Christian Palestinian, deported in 1988 by Israel, and fully committed to the policy and practice of nonviolent direct action. He offered seven steps to end the present cycle of violence: First, to the Palestinians, he uncompromisingly says, stop killing the Israelis. Welcome them as neighbors. Choose your leaders by elections. To the Israelis, stop killing Palestinians. End the siege of Gaza. Reverse the land grabs. End apartheid. Don’t do the dirty work of America.

To the international media, Awad asks that they stop using the word “terrorist” to describe actors on either side. To the Americans and Europeans, he says: there is no military solution. Stop supplying weapons for killing.

He emphasized that we need a humanitarian solution for Gaza. Why build a port, instead of getting Israel to open access by land? To the soldiers, he says: don’t cut anyone’s life short. Don’t seek revenge. He applauds those Israelis who refuse to fight, and he expressed concern for those who return, traumatized, from Gaza. “Every country that attacks another has a problem with their returning soldiers.”

In response to Dr. Awad, Helga Zepp-LaRouche admonished, why does the international community stand by and watch this? If we cannot intervene when there is a genocide in front of the eyes of the world, what does that say about us? She reported that, in contrast, responses to Oasis Plan have been extremely positive, wherever it becomes known.

Jason Ross provided a brief report on the IPC Energy Committee Meeting for the Oasis Plan held this past week. This committee is addressing the question of the Plan’s technical requirements. A million cubic meters of water per day would be a good objective for desalination, and it is the job of the Committee to identify not only the nations, but the sectors of engineering, water management, construction, etc. that are required to bring this dream to fruition.

During the ensuing discussion period, a representative of the JFK Peace Speech Committee invited attendees to participate in their June 10 upcoming meeting on Zoom. The Committee takes its name from the June 10, 1963, American University commencement speech of President Kennedy, which he called “possibly the most important speech ever made by an American President.” It signaled a bold attempt to reverse direction and move away from the Cold War.

Danish Schiller Institute leader Michelle Rasmussen gave a report on the Institute’s May 8 conference in Denmark for diplomats, which followed the Schiller Institute’s April 13 Oasis Plan conference. Videos and transcripts are available here.

A university professor in the West Bank reminded the participants that the attacks of October 2023 are not the actual reason for the Israeli/Palestinian conflict. He graphically conveyed the surreal character of life in Gaza for those who have tried to avoid all political involvement, and have had no contact with Hamas at all. He was an eyewitness to an occurrence in a village of 2,000 people near Nablus: Days ago, three IDF jeeps entered the village, began shooting for no reason, and then left, just as suddenly as they had arrived, with no explanation. Others discussed their frustrations in attempting to persuade others, as well as fear that what is being done by individual citizens is useless in the face of the madness of institutions and so-called elites.

Zepp-LaRouche, in her concluding remarks, mentioned the ongoing attempts to foment “color revolutions” in the dissident states of Hungary, Slovakia, Serbia, and especially Georgia (see EIR, May 10, 2024, “Unrest in Georgia: Maidan Redux?”). During the discussion, a military veteran had raised the issue of St. Augustine’s conception of a “just war,” suggesting that the Palestinians in Gaza and the Russians in Ukraine might be seen as conducting just wars. In response, she proposed that the whole matter of nonviolence, as well as the specific topic of just war, should be discussed by an IPC committee more intensively, with the results then brought to the body. She observed that in St. Augustine’s time (354-430 AD), nuclear weapons did not exist. The world today requires a shift in human identity. “Violence is a form of lack of development of the character of people,” she said. Returning to the idea of the Good Samaritan, she said that that idea is echoed in the “Kallias Letters” of Friedrich Schiller: the Good Samaritan embodies Schiller’s concept of the “beautiful soul,” whose emotions naturally lead him to do what is morally necessary. “We are in what may be the worst situation humanity has ever faced,” she said, but it does no good to simply be upset: “We have to use that energy to transform the situation. We must become good Samaritans, beautiful souls.”

International Peace Coalition #49: ‘There Is Goodness in the Universe, and That Will Prevail’

Transcript of the remarks of Helga Zepp-LaRouche, Col. Sen. Dick Black, Scott Ritter, Prof. Steven Starr, Chandra Mouzzafar, Vincenzo Romanello, and moderators Dennis Speed and Dennis Small

Helga Zepp-LaRouche and Others Address the International Peace Coalition Meeting No. 49

May 11, 2024 (EIRNS)—Here are the remarks of Helga Zepp-LaRouche, Col. Sen. Dick Black, Scott Ritter, Prof. Steven Starr, Chandra Mouzzafar, Vincenzo Romanello, and moderators Dennis Speed and Dennis Small to the Friday, May 10, 2024 meeting of the International Peace Coalition:

DENNIS SPEED: We want to welcome everybody for meeting No. 49 of the International Peace Coalition. We have many speakers today, so we just want to make a general announcement for everyone to try to keep your remarks both focused and short. But when we get to the Q&A period, there we want people to be focused on responding to the content of what you will hear. You can say anything you wish, but we make that as a request so we can run the meeting as efficiently as possible.
There are obviously a lot of things going on, particularly this past week. Today in fact, if I’m not mistaken, the UN General Assembly is expected to vote on a resolution on whether or not Palestine will be granted new rights and privileges, etc. So, there’s a lot even as we are speaking at this moment that is evolving.
What we’re going to do is to go to our first speaker, who is the intellectual generator of the International Peace Coalition, and also the founder and leader of the international Schiller Institute, Helga Zepp-LaRouche.

HELGA ZEPP-LAROUCHE: Hello to all of you. Well, the situation in the world is extremely advanced, and advancing by the day. Let me start—it’s difficult to choose which crisis is more acute, Ukraine or Southwest Asia—but let me start with Ukraine. There we had a very dramatic development in the last week, where the statements by Macron were reiterated on May 2 to send troops into Ukraine. Then, Cameron said it’s OK if Ukraine is using its cruise missiles to launch attacks deep into the territory of Russia. Then, you had Hakeem Jeffries from the U.S. Congress saying that if Ukraine loses, then the U.S. would send troops. This was, however, countered by a former member of the U.S. Army, Stanislav Krapivnik, who said if U.S. troops would be sent to Ukraine, they would be wiped out by Russia without any doubt. Then, Russia also said that if F-16s are deployed in Ukraine, they will regard that as a deployment of nuclear weapons, because of their dual-use capability. In other words, the F-16s can carry either conventional or nuclear weapons. And to all of that, for the first time in history, Putin announced maneuvers of the tactical nuclear weapons in response to these Western provocations. There have been normally tactical nuclear weapons rehearsals and maneuvers, but this is the first time that it was explicitly in reaction to these statements by Macron, Cameron, Jeffries, and the F-16 question.
That has sent shockwaves in the West, and Macron in the meantime pulled back a little bit and assured that France would not send troops. That was also probably due to his discussions with Xi Jinping, who was on a state visit in France. In the meantime, there has been relative silence so far from the British side. The British and French ambassadors had been called into the Russian Foreign Ministry and were read the Riot Act, and told what would happen, namely, that if these troops or the British systems would be deployed by Ukraine against Russia, this would cause a Russian reaction against all British and American bases and beyond. And that “beyond” was naturally left open, which Scott Ritter said he thought that this could cause an attack on U.S. bases in Romania, in Poland, in France, in Germany. So, we are really in an extremely escalated situation.
This does not prevent Defense Minister Boris Pistorius from Germany from travelling to the United States, where he bought new weapons systems of various kinds for $23 billion. NATO is pushing hard for the 2% of the national budgets being increased to 2.5%. This whole discussion is that if Russia wins in Ukraine, that Putin will march on and attack the Baltics, Poland, and other NATO countries. That is completely unproven; there are several journalists who have demanded that those who are insisting on this argument should bring the quotes from Putin. There are no quotes. As a matter of fact, the only available quote comes from Putin in his discussion with Tucker Carlson, when he explicitly said that Russia has no interest whatsoever to attack NATO countries. Anybody who studies the matter carefully can only come to the one conclusion: The one thing which Russia wants to get out of this whole affair is to have Western security guarantees like those Putin had demanded on Dec. 17, 2021. That Ukraine will not become a member of NATO, that there are no offensive American weapons systems along the Russian border. So, there is the farce one has to say of the planned so-called peace conference in mid-June in Switzerland, where the basis will be the Zelenskyy so-called “peace formula,” but Russia is not invited. It is an effort to pull as many countries from the Global South on the side of Ukraine, to be able to say that the majority of the world is going in this direction. But this has zero chance to actually lead to peace, because if you don’t invite Russia, how can you have a peace agreement if you don’t invite one of the two sides? This is a very dramatic picture.
If you look at the other hotspot, it is almost unbelievable to follow the news every day. In Rafah, since a couple of days, leaflets have been dropped saying that the 100,000 people of the probably 1.3 million people who are in an absolutely desperate situation in Rafah, have been motivated to relocate to another area because of the pending attack of the IDF on Rafah, which is beyond the imagination. Some of these people—I listened to a radio report this morning—some of these people have been relocated eight times; from the north to Khan Younis, to back to Rafah. Now they are told again to move away from there. Always starving, no medical supplies—it is an absolutely intolerable situation. Hamas in the meantime accepted a deal which was brokered by Qatar and Egypt. [Former CIA Director] Burns visited these countries, and then went to meet with Netanyahu. Now, it turns out that this incredibly cynical game, whereby Hamas is promised that part of the deal will be a permanent ceasefire. But when Burns talked with the Israelis, with Netanyahu, he said it will not be a permanent ceasefire. It will be a ceasefire not with a dot at the end, but a comma. Meaning that once the hostages are freed, then the war can continue.
So, this is a situation which is becoming more and more unbearable for the international community to watch; and we should not watch it.
So, on the positive side, I can only say that we had, following our very important Oasis Plan conference on April 13th, this past weekend a diplomatic event in Copenhagen with the presence of 13 embassies, half of dozen ambassadors in person. It was an extremely important follow-up meeting on the level of diplomats and ambassadors, and out of this meeting came a complete commitment to continue the organizing, kick it up to a higher level by trying to get a big international conference with the participation of states on the need to put the Oasis Plan, the development plan for the entire region of Southwest Asia in earnest on the agenda. I think this shows very clearly that if the Oasis Plan is becoming realized, that can be the first stepping stone in the direction of a New Paradigm for the whole strategic situation. That becomes more urgent by the day.
First of all, the London Economist has an article written by its chief editor containing an observation that indeed the old order is decaying, is finished, is no longer existent. This coming from The Economist is quite noteworthy, given the fact that it is the mouthpiece of the City of London. And there is a new poll conducted by an NGO headed by Anders Fogh Rasmussen, former NATO Secretary General. They made a poll and came to the conclusion that especially since the Gaza war started, the reputation of the United States in the world is rapidly plunging. It’s plunging in the Global South, among the Muslim world, but it’s also plunging among Germany, Belgium, Switzerland, Ireland, and some other countries of Europe. At the same time, the images of Russia and China are rising; naturally especially in the Global South.
If the establishments are not capable of learning, and it seems they still are very reluctant to do so, which you can see by the very harsh police reactions to the growing student protests in over 100 cities in the United States and now increasingly in Europe; in France, but also now in about 10 German cities, where in the case of Berlin and Leipzig, they went in relatively brutally and then several hundred professors supported the right of the students to defend their free speech. This is being blasted by the mainstream media as a complete break of the dam, the whole order is breaking apart. How can these professors dare to support the students? So, I think we are experiencing right now a real divide between those people who still have something human inside them, and those who are absolutely sticking to a collapsing order which cannot be maintained in any case. That puts the need on the agenda to really go in earnest for our new international security and development architecture, for a New Paradigm in the tradition of the Peace of Westphalia. If you do not include the interests of everybody, peace is absolutely impossible.
These are, in a few words, the updates about the situation, and now I’m very interested to hear what other people have to say.

SPEED: Thank you very much, Helga, and thank you to everybody who is just beginning to join us. I want to announce the next two speakers, because both of them have some schedule constraints. There’s Col. Richard Black, and Scott Ritter is on the line. What I’d like to do is go first to Colonel Black. Colonel Black, for people who don’t know, is the former head of the U.S. Army’s Criminal Law Division at the Pentagon; he’s a former Virginia State Senator. Welcome, Colonel Black, go right ahead.

COL. RICHARD H. BLACK (ret.): Thank you very much. I’m pleased to be with you. These are very tense times that we’re living in. Just recently, President Putin announced that there will be tests conducted, actual battlefield drills of tactical nuclear weapons carried out by Russia and by Belarus. The reaction from the media has to some extent been sort of blowing this thing off, saying it’s nuclear saber-rattling and so forth.
From the beginning of Russia’s special operation, Russia has pointedly reminded the West that it is a powerful nuclear state. This isn’t a bluff, and it’s not just meant to intimidate or to threaten. It’s actually a reminder of a very cold reality that NATO seems to have forgotten. The West is game of chicken on the world’s most deadly nuclear playground. From the outset, NATO—led by the United States—has carried out a series of just extremely reckless actions. NATO helped the Ukrainians assassinate 13 Russian generals. We worked to sink the flagship of the Black Sea fleet, the Moskva cruiser; 300 young sailors went to the bottom with it. The United States, apparently with White House approval, directly orchestrated the sabotage and destruction of the Nord Stream pipelines, which has permanently damaged the entire European economy; but especially the economy of Germany, which has suffered enormously from the cut-off of cheap Russian gas. We helped Ukraine to carry out very deep drone attacks that targetted Russia’s nuclear triad. That appears to have been a NATO-orchestrated development designed to see just how elements of the nuclear triad were. Ukraine apparently orchestrated this terror attack on the Moscow concert hall that killed 137 concert-goers. We don’t know the extent of NATO involvement in that. It was directed by Ukraine from what we can tell.
But now, we have sort of a ratcheting up, even from those things. We’ve got President Macron of France, and he is just constantly putting out information over and over suggesting that it is time for NATO troops to become directly involved in fighting Russian troops on the border. More recently than that, we have David Cameron expressing the British approval for the use of cruise missiles and drones and jets to strike deep inside of Russia.
Now, it’s important to recognize that this is a dramatic shift, because it directly contradicts British assurances earlier on that Kyiv would not be allowed to use these weapons inside the Russian heartland under any circumstances. Now, he’s sending the message, “It’s OK; it’s up to them.”
The most recent development in this whole scheme is the comment by House Minority leader Hakeem Jeffries, indicating that if Ukraine is defeated—which is sort of common knowledge that it’s coming—then the United States will have to fight. He said, “We can’t let Ukraine fall, because if it does then there’s a significant likelihood that America will have to get into the conflict. Not simply with our money, but with our servicewomen and our servicemen.”
Here’s why this is so relevant: We’re talking about sending American troops into battle against the Russian troops. Today, Ukraine’s lines are trembling. Ukraine has certainly fought very valiantly, but their manpower is drained. They lack the reserves to seal any Russian penetrations that occur to their defense lines. At the same time, Russia has massed several large armies for a late spring or summer offensive. And they’re likely to burst through at some point and Ukraine will not have the reserves to shore up the defenses. At that point, there will be a collapse of Ukraine’s lines. The White House knows that this is happening, but they will not permit this war to end, certainly not before the November elections. So, they’re preparing wildly reckless options for preserving power, and those options are the use of tactical nuclear weapons, battlefield weapons, or perhaps the use of poisonous gas, as we did during the Iran-Iraq War during the Reagan era. Those things have not been ruled out.
Russia, in response, is deeply concerned that the U.S. and NATO are beginning to deliver F-16s to Ukraine. These jets are capable of carrying the 100 tactical nuclear bombs, the B-61s, which are air-dropped gravity bombs. So, Russia considers the use of those bombs, or the potential for it, to be an enormous threat. For this reason, the Russian Foreign Ministry has warned NATO that the F-16 is considered a nuclear weapons carrier, and that when they launch, the jets and their airfields will be considered as legitimate targets. Keep in mind that there’s a very high likelihood that NATO would have been sending these from major U.S. airbases within the NATO countries.
On Monday, Putin announced this tactical nuclear weapons exercise in response to what they consider existential threats to Russia. All of this is happening. The Russian Foreign Ministry has summoned the French and British envoys and told them in no uncertain terms that NATO boots on the ground in Ukraine, or the use of long-range missiles inside of Russia will be considered as legitimate targets not only in Ukraine, but wherever these things are launched from. This means actual Russian attacks back into NATO. President Putin was newly inaugurated on May 7th; Russians are solidly behind him and behind the war effort. He’s in a position of great strength. He’s ready to fight the U.S. and NATO.
So, what we are seeing today is this fiery exchange of diplomatic salvos going back and forth. It is reminiscent of the lead-up to World War II; and it may unfortunately presage the outbreak of World War III. Thank you.

SPEED: Thank you very much, Colonel Black. Again, we want to always thank you for being with us. We’re going to go now to Scott Ritter. Scott Ritter a lot of people know from his appearances on things like Judge Napolitano and so on. Let’s remember he’s former United States Marine Corps, an intelligence officer. He was the chief United Nations Special Commission Weapons Inspector to Iraq from 1991-98. We’re always happy to have Scott with us. Scott, you now have the floor.

SCOTT RITTER: Thank you very much. I think Colonel Black pretty much summed it up. I’ll just reiterate some of the points, and maybe expand on some of them a little bit. We have a situation where classic deterrence is failing. It’s failing because in order for deterrence to work, both sides have to take the threat of their imminent destruction seriously. Russia does take the threat to its existential survival seriously. Russia understands that the United States and NATO have articulated a grand strategy that seeks the strategic defeat of Russia. If you’re a Russian, that means that Russia as you know it no longer exists. The United States and Europe are seeking to have Russia return to the decade of the 1990s, when Russia was completely subordinated economically, politically, and even from a security standpoint, to the collective West. This is a vision the West seeks to embrace and to have re-emerge, and it’s one that Russia has rejected wholeheartedly.
One only has to listen to the speeches of Vladimir Putin recently at his inauguration address and his address on Victory Day, to understand that Russia today will never go backwards; will never allow that to happen. Russia views a retrograde in that direction as an existential threat. Russia now defines itself as a nation that depends only on Russia; it is a self-sufficient nation that classifies itself as one of the great civilizations of the world. And Russia says, and its leader says that a world without Russia not a world worth living in. That’s sort of his way of saying that if you seek our strategic defeat, you seek your parallel demise. That’s Russia’s deterrence doctrine: If you seek to destroy Russia, you shall be destroyed in return.
Russia has warned the collective West, NATO, the United States that this issue in Ukraine, this special military operation is something that it will not tolerate a direct Western intervention into. They’ve said that from the very beginning; Russia alluded to the fact that if NATO were to intervene, this would become a direct conflict between Russia and NATO. And Russia would use all the means at its disposal in response. This means Russia’s nuclear weapons. And Russia doesn’t believe in limited nuclear war; that’s the other point that needs to be pointed out here. For Russia, once a nuclear war starts, it logically goes to general nuclear exchange. So, Russia doesn’t believe you can have a one-and-done; you could do a nuclear demonstration. Russia doesn’t believe in “usable nukes” in terms of “We can use these weapons, and then contain the problem so it doesn’t expand.” From a Russian perspective, once nuclear weapons are used, it will logically proceed to a general nuclear conflict.
One of the reasons why Russia does this is for deterrence value. So that people understand that there are clearly-defined red lines that cannot be crossed. These are reasonable red lines; it’s not as though Russia is seeking unreasonable conditions on the world. Russia simply says, “Do not seek our strategic defeat. Do not attack us with nuclear weapons. Do not try to acquire conventional military power capable of overwhelming us, because that would be a strategic defeat. We are not going backwards. We will use all the means at our disposal.”
Somehow the West doesn’t understand this. First of all, the majority of people who are so-called Russian experts or who are in a position to advise policymakers, or the policymakers themselves cut their teeth on so-called Russian-area studies during the 1990s—late 1980s, during the 1990s. These are the people who are committed to the exploitation of Russia. For them, Russia-area studies wasn’t about understanding Russia, but rather understanding how best to exploit Russia. It’s this mindset; their desire to have the West in a dominant position across the board. And an intolerance for Russia daring to stand up and be treated as an equal that has put us in this situation. Their policies always seek to return Russia to the 1990s. There is no policy out there today in the collective West that respects Russia as an equal, and will not tolerate Russia as a superior. But the fact remains today that Russia is in many ways the equal of the West, and in some ways the superior of the West. This is intolerable.
These nations have deluded themselves into believing that Russia is bluffing; that Russia is paper tiger. That what passes for a solid foundation of national security is a house of cards; that if you blow on it, it shall collapse. They believe that Vladimir Putin’s hold on power is tenuous. They believe that there are deep fractures within Russian society. They believe that the economy is being artificially hyped and that it’s very vulnerable to outside pressure and subject to collapse. The bottom line is, they don’t respect Russian deterrence. As a result, they are inclined to embark on policies to achieve an unattainable objective—strategic defeat of Russia; policies which will cross Russia’s red lines.
Colonel Black mentioned the French and British ambassadors being brought into the Foreign Ministry to be read the riot act. The French for daring to say that they will deploy French troops into Ukraine, and the British for saying that they will greenlight the use of British weaponry, the Storm Shadow, to be used to launch strategic strikes into the depths of Russia. I wasn’t there, the Russians haven’t put out a read-out of the meeting, and neither France nor the United Kingdom have talked about it. But I’d bet a dime to a dollar that the conversation went something like this: “What you have articulated represents policies that are seen by the Russian government as presenting an existential threat to our survival. We have told you not to intervene. You now are articulating policies of intervention. Let us remind you that we will respond decisively. And by decisively, we mean not just against terminating the threat as it exists in Ukraine, which we will do, but we will now strike decision-making centers outside of Ukraine to include the high probability of striking targets on your territory. And if you choose to respond to that, understand that we will respond with all the weapons available to us, and this does mean nuclear weapons. And we will use nuclear weapons against you.” I believe Russia did not sugarcoat this whatsoever.
This coincided with Russia launching these training exercises. These are not a bluff; this is not a game. This is the real Russian posture as it speaks. Vladimir Putin has articulated publicly that all decisions have been made. All decisions have been made; there will be no phone calls. There will be no discussions. At the appropriate time, if indeed, France, the United Kingdom, or any other Western nation chooses to conduct policies, conduct operations inside Ukraine squarely off against Russian soldiers, launching strategic strikes inside Russia, all decisions have been made. Russia will automatically respond.
Normally, that would be enough to trigger the deterrence factor, where people would say, “Well, we’re not willing to go there, so we shall modify our posture.” But what we have right now is a feeling in the West that this is pure bluff, and that it’s time to double-down on what we’re doing. Chatham House, a major British think tank, just published a report that said that Great Britain should embrace the strategic ambiguity that the French have done. Well, there’s nothing ambiguous about what the French have said; they said “We’ll go into Ukraine.” Russia has said, “If you do that, we will attack you.” Now the British are saying, “We need to adopt a similar posture.” This is very dangerous. We live in a very dangerous age. And this is a period of time when the United States needs to step up and provide leadership and make sure the British and French know in no uncertain terms that the United States will not back postures such as this. But the United States is silent. Indeed, in our own Congress, we have people making noises. I would say thank goodness that Hakeem Jeffries is not in the chain of command; so frankly speaking, his words mean nothing. He can order no troops; he can’t pick up the phone and call the Secretary of Defense with a meaningful conversation. If he were the Speaker of the House, he still would have those limitations, but the Speaker of the House is a player, who can make phone calls, not to direct, but to advise. But Hakeem Jeffries is a nobody, so fortunately, his words can’t be brought into action; but it should be noted that his mindset is reflective of the mindset of many members of Congress, who view the Russian posture as a bluff. This is the danger. If you’re going to have deterrence, both sides have to be cognizant of the fact that there are red lines which, if they are crossed, things will happen which they don’t want to happen. Therefore, don’t cross the red lines.
But right now, the Russian deterrence, although it’s soundly articulated and ably backed up with the evidence of the ability to carry it out, it’s not being treated in a respectful manner by the West. If the West doesn’t view it as not being a bluff, then they will cross those red lines. And because the Russians have made it clear that their response is on full automatic, we may very well find ourselves up one morning, and that will be our last morning on this Earth. Because once a nuclear war starts, once nuclear weapons are used, this will rapidly escalate to a strategic nuclear exchange between Russia and the United States. And then it’s too late.
So, what I believe we need to do, is focus on educating people about the reality of Russian deterrence; that it is real, it is not a figment of anybody’s imagination. And we need to work on getting Western policies to align. One of the more difficult aspects of this is to get the West to let go of Ukraine. We have lost this. We poured hundreds of billions of dollars into this gambit; it has failed. Russia is winning, and will win; and there is nothing that can be done to prevent this. No amount of Storm Shadows flying into Russia’s strategic depth, no amount of French troops on Ukrainian soil will turn the tide. The Russian is pre-ordained; it’s going to happen. The West needs to learn to deal with that. The best way to deal with that is to figure out how we can peacefully coexist with Russia in a post-conflict environment. Nobody’s having this discussion.
I’ll just throw out in conclusion, again sometimes my ambition is greater than ability to carry it out, but I have engaged with the Russians to begin a process in February of 2025 on the 80th anniversary of the Yalta Conference, to have a New Yalta Conference bringing together experts on international law to talk about post-conflict resolution between Russia and Ukraine. And then to follow up with a New Potsdam Conference in Berlin on the 80th anniversary of that, where Europe and Russia can begin talking about reconciliation in a post-Ukraine environment. There seems to be some interest; maybe we can get more interest, and maybe we can turn it into something that not only happens, but the product of which can be useful to guide a policy both in Europe, Russia, and the United States. Thank you very much for having me.

SPEED: Thank you, Scott, for being here. Before we go to our next two speakers, who will be Dr. Chandra Muzaffar, and Prof. Steven Starr, let me just ask Helga, because I know you have limited time, Scott, and may have to be going. Helga, is there anything you’d like to say to Scott or respond either to him or Colonel Black at this point?

ZEPP-LAROUCHE: I just think this idea of having a new international conference to discuss how to live together on the planet, is the most important. I’m promoting this idea of a new international security and development architecture based on the model of the Peace of Westphalia. I think that that idea, because that’s the situation—the Peace of Westphalia came into being because people realized that if they would continue the war, there would be nobody left alive. Now, with nuclear weapons involved, that is more true than then. So, I think we really should join all efforts to get the idea that we need a New Paradigm, and that the conclusion of the Peace of Westphalia is that you have to respect the interests of the other. That was also what Putin said in his speech in the context of his inauguration. He used that formulation about the interests of the other, which I thought was very appropriate. I referred to it in a short interview with TASS. So, I would urge all participants in this IPC conference that we should brainstorm on how we can activate as many intellectuals, academics, influential people, people who are concerned about peace, to support such an idea.

SPEED: Scott, any response before you get going?

RITTER: I think it’s great, Helga. Find one or two international lawyers who are going to be empowered to present your concept, and maybe we can bring them to Yalta to participate so that they can educate people on what you’re thinking. You could get the feedback and we can make sure that your ideas are part of an international dialogue.

ZEPP-LAROUCHE: We will work on it, thank you.

SPEED: Thank you, Scott. Stay as long as you can, but we understand that you have some restrictions. I’d like to go now to Dr. Chandra Muzaffar, founder and president of Just International, the international movement for a just world. He’s also one of the original founders of the International Peace Coalition. Glad to see you back, sir.

DR. CHANDRA MUZAFFAR: [can’t seem to unmute himself]

SPEED: OK, we’ll come back to you. I’ll go to Prof. Steven Starr, a nuclear weapons expert and director of the University of Missouri’s Clinical Laboratory Science Program. Steve?

PROF. STEVEN STARR: Hi, thanks for having me here today. I actually retired from that director position, but I’m still teaching a class on nuclear weapons at the university every summer.
I get the impression that the political elite and the leadership in the West are like the students I have coming in who know little or nothing about the effects of nuclear weapons and nuclear war. Because as Scott said, the West doesn’t seem to be deterred from risking nuclear war. I supposed it’s a combination of arrogance and hubris, but there’s also got to be an enormous amount of ignorance to take a position like that. It is astounding to anyone who’s knowledgeable about what nuclear weapons do. I think we also have a really huge problem, because the western media has just become an echo chamber for official narratives. So, throughout the course of the war in Ukraine, the only news that’s been reported here has been direct from the Ukrainian military sources. So, much of it has been completely factually incorrect. Last August, we had President Biden announcing that Ukraine had won the war; Putin has lost. We’ve heard throughout the war that Russia was running out of missiles and ammunition; that they were using chips from washing machines, that they were desperate, that they’d lost half of their army.
So, how does that match up with the realities of the battlefield today that Russian forces are advancing all across the entire line of conflict? Which is what’s triggering the panic in the West; all these Western leaders are facing elections, and that’s their main concern is not to lose the next election. But if you think about what happens if Biden wins the election? You can bet there will be NATO troops on the ground if he does, if not before. But I think the rate of the Russian advances now are such that we won’t have to wait until November to see something like that happen, because Russia is clearly winning the war now.
And I wanted to say just a few things for people, because the news has been so blacked out in the West. For the first time since World War II, throughout the entire Cold War neither the United States nor Russia has ever suffered attacks on its homeland. We have used proxy wars in Vietnam and Korea, but never were the attacks directed at homelands. Russia has had Russian oil refineries hit, their military bases have been hit, the cities of Tula, Kaluga, Bryansk, Moscow. Belgorod has been hit to the point where they’ve had to evacuate half of the city; that’s a city of 340,000 people. There was recently an attempted invasion of supposed Russian nationalist forces, but they’re just Western mercenaries who use tanks, troops, armored vehicles. How would that be received in the United States if Moscow was fighting a proxy war, and Mexico was being used to fight a proxy war against the U.S.?
There was a recent attack at the concert that massacred 140 people. The head of the Russian FSB, which is the equivalent of the U.S. FBI, said that the Ukrainians and probably Westerners were involved. That’s inflamed Russian opinion. And of course, Helga provided great detail initially talking about the French and Macron and the constant talk about French troops. There’s been definite reports about the French Foreign Legion being there, although they’ve been contradicted.
A few other things that people might now know about: NATO has been pushing what they call a “military Schengen,” which means that all the paperwork has been done to streamline transfers of military equipment across the borders in Europe, without any slowdowns from regulations, that make logistical preparations such as the storage of munitions on NATO’s Eastern flank. NATO is building the largest military base in Europe in Romania, which is going to be 50% larger than the Ramstein air base in Germany. It will cover 6,900 acres; it has a perimeter of 18 miles. The base will accommodate 10,000 NATO and Romanian troops, as well as their families. This doesn’t sound like they’re getting ready to stand down to me.
The U.S. has been facilitating construction of a new highway system on an emergency basis that connects Romania, Moldova, and Ukraine. That’s for logistical support. The U.S. has just delivered a large shipment of M1-A1 Abrams tanks, M2 Bradley armored vehicles and light support vehicles to Greek ports. They’re flooding the military equipment in there. Romania is building up portions of Moldova. French forces are in Moldova. The U.S. has had the 1st Airborne Division in Romania, training for some time now. And throughout the course of the war, the NATO satellites and reconnaissance planes, the AWACS, have constantly been providing targetting information. This targetting information includes, their drones were sent to help hit, say, the Engels Air Force base in Russia, which houses the Russian strategic nuclear bomber, they have to evade air defense systems. So, in way, when they send theses drones in, they’re also mapping out Russian air defense systems. The Russians are very acutely aware of this.
If you add this picture up, it’s more than disquieting. It just seems that we have a leadership, at least definitely in the United States, that’s bent on starting a war with Russia. If they really believe they can make Russia back down, it’s hard to comprehend. I’ve made a career of talking about the effects of nuclear weapons, and I decided I wouldn’t do that today. I can answer questions today, but a nuclear weapon is like a piece of the Sun when it detonates. The surface of the fireball is hotter than the surface of the Sun. It ignites fires in all directions. The strategic weapons of the United States and Russia will start nuclear firestorms that will have diameters between 80-150 square miles. That’s up to 290 square kilometers, I think; I’m not sure, I’m not so good on the metric system as I should be. But these are enormous fires. One detonation like that will destroy an entire city and kill hundreds of thousands of people. Russia and the United States each have 1,000 strategic nuclear warheads that they can launch within 15 minutes or less. Then the so-called strategic weapons, the B-61 weapons that NATO has, five member states and six bases in Europe, these are called variable yield weapons. They can be dialed down to have a yield of 300 tons of TNT, which is 0.3 kilotons. Some military commanders will see that as usable, because it’s only about 27 times larger than the largest U.S. conventional weapon, the mother of all bombs, which is 11 tons of conventional high explosive. But they can also be dialed up to a yield of 170,000 tons of TNT explosive equivalent, or 170 kilotons, which is a strategic nuclear weapon. So Russia knows these F-16s can carry a B-61 weapon, they don’t know if it’s in there and what yield it would be set at.
That’s enough, but I just want to underline my concern that the leadership in the West is oblivious. They seem to have forgotten the Mutual and Assured Destruction. We need to remind them of that. I’m not sure of the best way. A conference would be good—anything that would draw attention to that I think would be useful. The people in Europe need to wake up to this.
Thank you for your attention. I’d be glad to answer any questions you might have.

SPEED: Thank you very much Professor Starr. We’re trying to get two things done here. There are some scheduling questions. Professor Muzaffar, are you OK now? …

DR. CHANDRA MUZAFFAR: Yes. Thank you, Dennis. Thank you very much everyone. Thanks in particular to Helga and Mike [Billington]. I’ll be brief. There are a few points I would like to make related to what has been discussed so far.
I think Scott Ritter has highlighted what I feel is the most critical dimension of this crisis. That both sides are not listening to one another, there is no communication. Both have taken positions which appear to be intransigent, at least in appearance. And if you look at the reality, it is very clear—and this leads me to one of the three points I want to make—if you look at the reality, I think Russia has made its position very clear, that they will react, they will respond. They know what the red lines are, and they will act. There is no hedging around, there is no attempt to mask the intention.
As far as the West is concerned, I think this, too, is playing the game. Why? Because the most vital aspect of this crisis the West has not shared with its own people, which is that the real purpose behind what has happened since February 2022, that the real purpose is the annihilation of Russia. They want to defeat Russia, and this has been a strategic ambition of the West for a very long while, even before the Cold War ended. So, one is not surprised that this has come to the fore again. That is the intention of the West, and my fear is that the West is quite capable of moving in this dangerous direction. Why? Because for a civilization which sees itself as dominant and wants to perpetuate its dominance at all costs, whatever the consequences, I do not think they will tolerate a situation where that dominance is challenged, whether it’s by Russia or China, and this, I think, is the reality. They would see a Russia that emerges victorious from the Ukraine crisis, they would see a Russia that is victorious as a direct and immediate challenge to their dominance. And they would want that to be brought to an end, which means that they will be preparing to do whatever it takes to perpetuate their position.
This is the challenge facing us. I think the West will move in this direction.
I also feel the Russians, they will not adopt a different course. They have made their position very clear. And for Russia, whatever some analysts in the West may say, it is an existential threat, because that is the underlying motive, and this is the reason why they have taken this position.
So, what do we do? May I suggest a couple of things here apart from the conferences that has been proposed by Scott Ritter and supported by Helga. It’s a good idea, we should work towards that. But I would see as a more immediate challenge before us, how to persuade the decision-makers in the West and the people who influence the decision-makers, the inner circles in the West—the United States and Britain, in France, and Germany—how to persuade them that this is the course that lies before us: This is the danger. They should accept, as I think Scott said quite correctly, they should accept defeat in Ukraine, without saying that it is a defeat. That is something that one should leave to the negotiators, to be the people who have to work this out. Through negotiations, I think one should take a position where the West will accept the reality—we don’t want to use the word defeat—the reality. And reality has been there right from the beginning, but now it is staring at us dark-face, and that reality is linked to this real threat to the whole of human civilization. The West just has to say that the Russian-speaking parts of Ukraine—apart from Crimea, Donetsk, and other areas—they should be returned to Russia. And added to that, yet another dimension, where one should get a solid commitment from Russia that they would enter into bilateral and multilateral treaties with various countries, including Russia’s own neighbors and others which are part of the Western alliance, they would get into these treaties: That they would forge these treaties that would say that the sovereignty of states would be respected. And this would be a very important principle going forward, that sovereignty must be respected at all costs.
For us in the Global South, this is very, very critical, which is why I see people in the Global South—leaders and opinion-makers who can be persuaded—playing this role. They have to reach out and say: Look, the underlying principles are principles are very important to the Global South: respect for sovereignty. That one would respect the sovereignty of all states. One would, at the same time, ensure that the different states can live together, and they would respect one another. This principle of respect which Helga also emphasized is very critical. And this, again, is something that is very important to the Global South. If the Global South had reacted in a certain way in the past, during the years of the Cold War, it is partly because they felt that there was so little respect coming from certain quarters, even from Russia at a certain point in the past. And what they want is respect.
So, respect, sovereignty, these are two important principles. That these would be things to be worked out, but in the short-run, a solution that is directed to Ukraine: which is, respect for the Russian-speaking states and their history, because the history is not a simplistic history, where Ukraine was a totally different state and all the rest of it—we know what the past was. So, respect that, respect the need to recognize the rules of the Russian-speaking areas of Ukraine, eastern part, southern part: do that. And at the same time, Russia itself gets into treaties, establishes these treaties with 12 guarantees, maybe through the UN or other international bodies, and I think this is something that is workable. We should work towards that.
I see the IPC, this International Peace Coalition of ours, as something that could play a role. That we’ve sustained this dialogue for so long, that is a great achievement. It is a great, great achievement. And I think we can reach out to various groups on the Russian side, on the side of the West, and say, “this is what is needed.” Both sides will have to realize the danger that faces us, and more than just realize the danger that faces us, they should work in such a way that they will be able to ameliorate the situation. We will have to ensure that this doesn’t happen, because I cannot think of a moment in our history where we have come as close to Armageddon: A total destruction. I think we are at that point, and we don’t have much time. I think this Coalition, I’m seriously convinced, has got a role to play. We’ll play our individual roles within our own governments, leaders that we know, opinion workers, opinion-makers that we are aware of, we will work together with all of them. Thank you very much.

SPEED: Thank you very much, Dr. Chandra Muzaffar. It’s a very welcome addition and very thoughtful….

DENNIS SMALL: We do have two more speakers here and then much discussion, here. The next person up is have Dr. Vincenzo Romanello: He’s Italian, he’s in the Czech Republic. He is a nuclear engineer and founder of the organization Atoms for Peace [Atomi per la pace].

DR. VINCENZO ROMANELLO: Good afternoon. I would like to say a couple of very short things. The first is, we were speaking about nuclear war. Of course, it would be a disaster because of fires, because of shockwaves. According to simulations, hundreds of millions would die immediately or maybe even 1 billion people. But it’s not the worst part of the story. The worst part of the story would be the fallout and the nuclear winter which would follow. This would be a disaster any maybe the collapse of every infrastructure—so, food, water, energy, health systems. I believe only disturbed people can think to survive in a scenario like this, and is willing to survive in a scenario like this. They can do that, only because people are not informed, because if they would know what is the scenario which they are planning, they would all react. So, this is really a battle of information of all the people.
When we speak about nuclear war, we always forget that, probably the superpowers would use also biological warfare and chemical warfare. So, no way to survive, very probably.
But my message today I wanted it to be something, where I wanted to give a hopeful message today. I wanted to speak about desalination in the Oasis Plan. So, Helga mentioned some time ago that with maybe 1% to 3% of the military expenses, it would be enough to implement desalination in the Middle East area. According to my calculations, only 0.001 of the expenses would be enough to manufacture three or four small modular reactors and starting to implement desalination, providing hundreds of thousands of cubic meters of water every day, at a cost which would of the order $1 or even half a dollar per cubic meter.
This could be possible if we manufacture desalination plants, and we have the technologies. There are many desalination plants worldwide. There are also high-temperature reactors, small modular reactors. We have the technologies, and it’s something that is possible to do.
What I would like to remember, however, is that if you think to a nuclear policy in those places, it is not simply that easy how somebody can think that, “OK, we decide, we have the money, we manufacture the reactors.” You need to train people there, to have a regulatory authority, and this takes time. From the moment when you have the money and you take the decision, it takes ten years, probably. Because I work in a regulatory authority, I know how difficult it is and how many qualified people you need, how much time you need to qualify them, etc. But it is not a reason not to do it. Every second lost is something going more in the direction of Hell, in my opinion.
So, we should really be informing the people and going in this direction as soon as possible. Thank you.

SMALL: Thank you very much, Dr. Romanello. … Dennis Speed?

SPEED: Yes, I just want to respond in part to some of the last things by reminding people of something. Daniel Barenboim, the conductor, wrote something earlier this week, I believe it was published on the 6th of May, on this being the 200th anniversary of the premiere of the Ninth Symphony. I thought this was a useful thing both to say, and also because I know that Helga will have something to say about it. He said:
“Ludwig van Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony was first performed exactly 200 years ago Tuesday, and since become probably the work most likely to be embraced for political purposes….”
But then he says: “Beethoven might have been surprised at the political allure of his masterpiece.
“He was interested in politics, but only because he was deeply interested in humanity….
“I don’t believe, however, that Beethoven was interested in everyday politics….
“Instead, he was a deeply political man in the broadest sense of the word. He was concerned with moral behavior and the larger questions of right and wrong affecting all of society. Especially significant for him was freedom of thought and of personal expression, which he associated with the rights and responsibilities of the individual….
“The closest he comes to a political statement in the Ninth is a sentence at the heart of the last movement, in which voices were heard for the first time in a symphony: ‘All men become brothers.’…
“The greatness of music, and the Ninth Symphony, lies in the richness of its contrasts. Music never just laughs or cries; it always laughs and cries at the same time. Creating unity out of contradictions—that is Beethoven for me.
“Music if you study it properly, is a lesson for life. There is much we can learn from Beethoven. … He is the master of bringing emotion and intellect together. With Beethoven, you must be able to structure your feelings and feel the structure emotionally—a fantastic lesson for life!”
So, I will leave it at that. I just wanted to put that in, because you don’t want to get caught in, somebody called you anti-Semitic, or called you some other name. I come from a certain background in which that was often done, and you have to learn to rise above it, but how do you do it? How do you educate your own emotions so you can do that? So, I just wanted to include that here. And Helga, of course you may have some things about that. But people might want to go listen to the symphony.

SMALL: Helga, please go right ahead.

ZEPP-LAROUCHE: I want to touch upon several points which were made. I think one of the important outcomes of this session of the IPC meeting—and I want to thank all participants for a really very, very round and excellent discussion of the strategic picture in which we find ourselves. As a matter of fact, I was thinking, maybe we should make an exception to the rule, and publish this entire IPC call. I don’t know if you agree with that, but I think it was so rich in terms of both highlighting the danger of nuclear war, the genocide in Gaza and what the mobilization is against it internationally. So, maybe if you could make a vote, or signal your agreement or disagreement in the chat or email, we can see then.
I think we should really try to get across what especially Colonel Black and Scott Ritter and Steve Starr were elaborating, because the danger of nuclear war, it is so close, and every word that was said I can only agree with, because if the elites would know what they are playing with, they wouldn’t do it. But obviously they are completely arrogant and full of themselves, and they are not aware of the danger into which they are bringing all of humanity. I just would like to add one element, and that is that the Russians have a Doomsday machine: They have a doctrine whereby if the entire Russian leadership would be knocked out in the context of a war, they have installed where a second strike would nevertheless deliver a totally devastating blow, nevertheless. So, that would mean the absolute secure end of civilization, and I think people really should consider this.
On the Oasis Plan, what was interesting in the Copenhagen diplomatic meeting about the Oasis Plan, was that several participants had expressed agreement that, because many of the people who are suffering what is happening in Gaza, who are immediately concerned to get humanitarian aid to save the lives, may not have the time to think about the Oasis Plan, because they tend to think, “Let’s first save these lives, get a political solution, and then think about an Oasis Plan.” And we all agreed that that is understandable, even if it’s not the correct approach. But it puts all the more responsibility to the intellectuals to really forcefully try to get this alternative in the minds of everybody, and that is what my appeal to you, again, is: Help us to get the Oasis Plan into all pores of society— governments, think tanks, universities, military people, other organizations as well.
Thirdly, I want to say that one of the most important weapons right now in the metaphorical sense is to be exactly informed of what is going on strategically. I know that many people around the world are worried about the media telling you a narrative, and not the reality. I would like to use this occasion to tell you that we have a strategic alert newsletter, a Daily Alert, which is extremely inexpensive. It is a daily briefing about how the world strategically changes from yesterday to today. It is based on the experience of 50 years of analysis, based on the scientific method of Lyndon LaRouche, who initiated this process 50 years ago. Those people who have been reading it are absolutely convinced that it’s a very unique tool to be informed. So my suggestion to all of you is, if you are interested, you can subscribe to it for free for a couple of weeks, and then if you like it, you can subscribe to it and be really much, much better informed than any other way. We will put this in the chat, and I would urge you to try to subscribe to it.
Lastly, I can only wholeheartedly support what Dennis Speed said about Beethoven. The Ninth Symphony is probably the greatest work ever written. That’s very difficult, because Beethoven has written many absolutely outstanding compositions, but in the Ninth Symphony, especially when you take the totality of the three movements, then culminating in the fourth movement, where you have the entire richness of agapē, of elevating humanity on a completely different level. It’s not just the “all men become brethren,” which is obviously a very beautiful idea and which will happen, I’m sure of it: If man matures and becomes adult, we will be all each other’s brothers and sisters, naturally. And I’m not gendering, I have been saying that way back before the genders even came up with the idea. But it is also, if you listen to the text, which was written by Schiller, the Ode to Joy, there is a part in the composition where it says “above the stars, there must be a good Father.” You should listen to that part of the music. I’m absolutely sure that shudders will run down your back, because it is so elevated. It brings up man in the image of God, and that there is justice in the universe, in the Creation itself, and that there is goodness in the universe and that that will prevail. So, I would suggest that you indeed listen to it, and listen to the translation of that text, while you are listening, because I think there is a unity of Schiller and Beethoven which is really the highest expression of humanity I can think of. That is exactly what we need to be uplifted and strong enough to get through this battle. 

by Daniel Platt

Report on the 49th consecutive weekly meeting of the International Peace Coalition, May 10, 2024

Helga Zepp-LaRouche, founder of the Schiller Institute, opened the proceedings with a discussion of the acute danger of the escalating war in Ukraine, highlighting the insane provocations of French President Emmanuel Macron, British Foreign Secretary David Cameron, and U.S. House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries. In response, Russian President Vladimir Putin has announced maneuvers of tactical nuclear weapons. Zepp-LaRouche emphasized that the claim that Putin will launch a general invasion of Eastern Europe, should Russia win in Ukraine, is entirely without foundation; on December 17, 2021, Putin had demanded security guarantees, and that continues to be what he wants.

Mrs. Zepp-LaRouche continued with an update on the situation in Gaza: 100,000 out of 1.3 million refugees have been relocated from Rafah. Some have been relocated as many as eight times, are starving and have no medical supplies. Zepp-LaRouche described the negotiations process as an “incredibly cynical game,” where Hamas was promised a permanent ceasefire, but that has now been redefined with “not a dot at the end, but a comma.” In other words, once the hostages are freed, the war can continue.

In contrast, she reported on a recent successful Schiller Institute seminar in Copenhagen, where the Oasis Plan was discussed with diplomats and ambassadors. “If the Oasis Plan were realized, it can be the first stepping stone for the new paradigm,” she said. Even the “City of London mouthpiece,” The Economist, now admits, in the words of its editor-in-chief, that “the old order is dying. Its sudden collapse could be sudden and irreversible.”

Col. Richard H. Black (ret.), former head of the U.S. Army’s Criminal Law Division at the Pentagon and a former Virginia State Senator, insisted that the Russian nuclear maneuvers are not saber-rattling, not a bluff. “It’s actually a reminder of a very cold reality … the West is playing a game of chicken on the world’s most dangerous nuclear playground,” he said. The U.S. sabotaged the Nord Stream pipelines in September 2022, which has damaged the entire European economy. Ukraine apparently orchestrated the terror attack on the Crocus City Hall concert in Moscow, this year. But these actions come from desperation. “Today, Ukraine’s lines are trembling. The White House knows that this is happening, but they will not permit this war to end before the November elections.” Black warned that “NATO boots on the ground in Ukraine will be considered legitimate targets” by Russia and could mean retaliation against NATO targets on Russian territory. That “may presage the outbreak of World War III.”

Former United States Marine Corps intelligence officer and United Nations Special Commission weapons inspector Scott Ritter opened his remarks by saying, “We have a situation where classic deterrence is failing. NATO and the United States have articulated a strategy for the strategic defeat of Russia.” Russia will never allow that to happen, Ritter warned. Russia has warned the collective West that Russia will not tolerate an intervention in Ukraine. Russia doesn’t believe in a limited nuclear exchange. Today’s Western “strategists” cut their teeth in the 1990s, in Russian studies programs designed for exploiting the post-Soviet nation. As a result, they are committed only to erroneous “policies which will cross Russia’s red lines.”

Following Ritter’s presentation, there was a short colloquy with Helga Zepp-LaRouche. Ritter in his conclusion had proposed that a “New Yalta” and a “New Potsdam” conference be convened on the respective February and July 80th anniversaries of each in 2025. These conferences would involve experts from the United States, Russia, and many other nations, “to talk about post-conflict resolution between Russia and Ukraine, where Europe and Russia can begin talking about reconciliation in a post-Ukraine environment.” Zepp-LaRouche responded that “I just think that this idea of having a new international conference to discuss how to live together on the planet is the most important.” She spoke about her proposal to develop a new security and development architecture “on the model of the (1644-1648) Peace of Westphalia.

Prof. Steve Starr, director of the University of Missouri’s Clinical Laboratory Science Program and a senior scientist at the Physicians for Social Responsibility, followed. “I get the impression that the political elite in the West are like my students coming in, who know virtually nothing about nuclear war.” Adding that “the Western media have become an echo chamber for official narratives,” he reviewed some of the laughable claims about the Ukraine war which have been relayed to the public with a straight face. Since World War II, Russia and the U.S. have fought only proxy wars; but that changed with Ukraine’s attacks on targets within Russia. Starr presented an extensive list of provocative NATO actions, including the fact that “NATO is building the largest military base in Europe in Romania.” The Russians are acutely aware of all of it. “We have a leadership, at least in the United States, that is bent on starting a war with Russia,” Starr said, and concluded by reviewing the grim reality of thermonuclear warfare which he has presented in previous meetings.

Dr. Chandra Muzzaffar of Malaysia, President of the International Movement for a Just World (JUST) argued that the West has not shared with its own people that the real intention of the Ukraine war is the annihilation of Russia. Russia views the Ukraine war as an existential threat. He stressed that the efforts of the IPC, which has been meeting consistently for the past year, have now become a major factor in the world strategic situation. “That we have sustained this dialogue for so long, that is a great achievement. And I think we can reach out to various groups, on the Russian side, one the side of the West—both sides will have to realize the danger that faces us. I cannot think of a moment in our history when we have come as close to Armageddon, a total destruction. I think we are at that point. And we don’t have much time.”

Sian Bloor, an organizer for the Workers Party U.K., reported on George Galloway’s February 29 victory in a by-election for Parliament. Galloway, running as an independent for the small party, won more votes than the Labour, Conservative and Liberal Party candidates combined, shocking Britain’s entire political establishment. (Even more shocking, the runner up was a car repair shop owner “without any political views” who also defeated all the main parties.) The fact that Galloway represents a small party, and the runner-up was an independent, shows the disaffection in the U.K. electorate with Ms. Bloor described as the “uniparty” or “duopoly,” the Labour and Conservative parties: “You can’t get a cigarette paper between them. As George [Galloway] regularly says, they are two cheeks of the same backside.” Her presentation concluded with a brief exchange between Bloor and New York independent Congressional candidate Jose Vega, who is campaigning for the Bronx seat held by Ritchie Torres, author of a bill to suppress college students and faculty who seek to stop the destruction of Gaza.

Italian nuclear engineer Vincenzo Romanello, founder of Atomi per la Pace (Atoms for Peace), warned that, in addition to the horrors of nuclear war described by Dr. Starr, the worst part of the story would be the resultant radioactive fallout, followed by nuclear winter, that no one would survive. On the other hand, we have the technologies for desalination that will make the Oasis Plan a success.

Father Harry Bury of Pax Christi spoke passionately about the need to “spread the word” about the Oasis Plan everywhere. He lamented how few people are advocating it, and demanded that the IPC find a way to immediately remedy this. We learned from the First World War that by punishing Germany, we brought Hitler to power, but by helping the vanquished nations after World War II, we laid the foundation for peace. He compared the Oasis Plan to the Marshall Plan, and concluded by saying, “We need to work hard to help every nation to develop.”

This was followed by a live report from Diego Machuca López and Fernando Garzón, who were participating in a demonstration for Gaza in Guayaquil, Ecuador.

In her concluding remarks, Zepp-LaRouche said, “If the elites would know what they are playing with, they wouldn’t do it. One of the most important weapons, in the metaphorical sense, is to be exactly informed about what is going on strategically,” she said, and encouraged participants to try a free introductory subscription to the EIR Daily Alert. Both Zepp-LaRouche and moderator Dennis Speed called attention to the great conductor and pianist Daniel Barenboim’s essay on Beethoven and the Ninth Symphony, which he first conducted on May 7, 1824. “There is goodness in the universe, and that will prevail,” Zepp-LaRouche said.

International Peace Coalition: Anything from This Geopolitical ‘Kitchen of Poison Must Be Overcome’

by Daniel Platt

May 3, 2024 (EIRNS)—Amid the tumult and policy crisis created by the unexpected explosion of opposition to the Biden Administration’s financial and political support of the outlaw Netanyahu regime of Israel, the International Peace Coalition (IPC) held its 48th consecutive meeting today. Schiller Institute founder Helga Zepp-LaRouche, the original initiator of the IPC, opened this session with her oft-repeated demand that “We have to replace geopolitics with the idea of cooperation instead of confrontation.” Zepp-LaRouche emphasized the importance of the internationalization of the student movement against the genocide in Gaza. She pointed out that, while there are now 90 to 100 solidarity actions in universities around the United States, there are now also corresponding actions in France, Germany, Italy, Canada, and many other nations.

On the other hand, Zepp-LaRouche warned of the “new definition of anti-Semitism” being pushed in the form of legislation by frantic genocide apologists in the U.S. Congress. (Such laws, if passed, are against the United States Constitution, whose First Amendment stipulates that government must in no way interfere with the content of speech.) She singled out the brutal police deployments against the demonstrators, saying that with that sort of repression “the word ‘democracy’ has become completely hollow.” She was especially touched by the message of the children of Gaza, expressing their gratitude to the American students for attempting to save their lives in the name of humanity.

Zepp-LaRouche, on the subject of the war in Ukraine, reported that German General Harald Kujat (ret.) recently stated that Ukraine’s aspiration to restore the 1991 borders is not realistic. In addition, the goal of the United States was to weaken Russia, so negotiations have been sabotaged. There is therefore no exit, and no winning strategy. Ukrainian men are now unable to obtain passports, because every last one of them is a candidate for conscription into the military. Worse, of the $61 billion in military aid voted up by the U.S. Congress, only about $10 billion is for new weapons; the rest has paid for weapons already produced and delivered!

Zepp-LaRouche also warned against the “loud and wrong” proposals that the U.S. seize Russian assets in Western banks, saying that in reaction to such a confiscation the Global South will come to the conclusion that their assets are no longer safe with the dollar system. The likelihood is that their response to such confiscations will be a decisive move to replace the U.S. SWIFT system, with an alternative global financial framework, as the Global South realizes that the Wall Street/City of London financial “axis of evil” empire is finished.

News From the Freedom Flotilla

The meeting received reports from organizers of the Freedom Flotilla, which is attempting to leave Türkiye with 5,500 tons of food and medicine, and six ambulances, bound for Gaza.

In an interview updating the status of the Flotilla, pre-recorded for the meeting, Dr. Mubarak Awad, founder of Nonviolence International, said Israel prevailed upon the Guinea Bissau International Ships Registry to withdraw its flags from the two lead vessels. The Turkish government offered their flag, but wanted a unit of Turkish soldiers onboard. This option was rejected by the leaders of the Flotilla as it could be construed as a warlike gesture. Dr. Awad stressed that nonviolence was a cornerstone of the Flotilla’s policy. “We are willing to be shot at by the Israelis,” he said. “We have people coming from 40 countries. I would hope that we could even have a ship of Israelis.”

He was followed by Coleen Rowley, a former FBI special agent, whistleblower, and member of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS), who just returned from Türkiye. She was very impressed by the involvement of IHH Humanitarian Relief Foundation. She mentioned a recent article on the Flotilla in an April 21 issue of the Washington Post, which included quotes from VIPS member and Flotilla leader Col. Ann Wright, despite the cited Israeli characterization of the IHH as terrorist.

Rowley was asked: “Is Israel a terrorist state?”

She warned against oversimplification; there are many Israelis who oppose the Likud’s policy. She quoted the late actor Peter Ustinov, “Terrorism is the war of the poor; war is the terrorism of the rich.”

The Inception of the Zionist Ideology

Prof. Cliff Kiracofe, president of the Washington Institute for Peace and Development and former senior professional staff member of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, presented a précis of his book Dark Crusade: Christian Zionism and U.S. Foreign Policy. He began with Great Britain’s Lord Palmerston, who dominated British foreign policy during 1830-1865, when Britain stood at the height of its imperial power. Palmerston said that to compete with Russia and France in the Middle East, the British Empire should sponsor a Jewish return to Palestine. The ideology of Christian Zionism was concocted in the 1830s and ’40s to support Palmerston’s plan.

One of its proponents was the Rev. John Nelson Darby, who traveled to the U.S. to promote the doctrine. Consequently, from 1858 to the present, Christian Zionism has permeated many Protestant churches in the United States. A central feature is the Armageddonist/End Times dogma that we must gather Jews in the Holy Land to trigger the Apocalypse when we confront Russia, China, and Persia, our principal opponents. Southern Baptists and Pentecostals have all embraced this heresy, which Kiracofe called “a bizarre and dangerous ideology.”

He described how the influence of this doctrine explains why the Congress passed the new definition of anti-Semitism. Influential Protestant clerics like Rev. John Hagee have been calling for war against Iran since the beginning of this century.

In response to Kiracofe’s presentation, Zepp-LaRouche replied, “Anything that comes from this kitchen of poison must be overcome.” She characterized the collaboration between Israelis and Christian Zionists as an “unholy alliance.”

Jacques Cheminade, the head of France’s Solidarité et Progrès party, added a quote from the Israeli philosopher Yeshayahu Leibowitz: “The idea that a country or any other specific place has an intrinsic sanctity is indubitably an idolatrous idea.”


Moderator Anastasia Battle invited students to participate in the discussion period, promising to protect them from “doxing,” which is the practice by opponents of free speech such as Bill Ackman, to publish personal information on political “undesirables” as a means to harm their professional careers.

Veterans for Peace activist Jack Gilroy reported on antiwar activism around the U.S., noting he had declined to pay a $250 fine after being arrested at an action against military contractor BAE. He intends instead to put BAE on trial.

Independent Congressional candidate Jose Vega reported from the streets of his constituency in the Bronx, where he is gathering petition signatures to get on the ballot. New York City is “on the precipice of change,” he said, and suggested that students from Gaza should be invited to come to the U.S. to study, as were Ukrainian students, since all the universities in Gaza have been destroyed. Rutgers University recently announced that they will admit some. Vega’s opponent, AIPAC darling Rep. Ritchie Torres, announced on Friday, May 3, that he plans to introduce the blatantly unconstitutional COLUMBIA Act, (College Oversight and Legal Updates Mandating Bias Investigations and Accountability Act), to impose “third-party anti-Semitism monitors” on institutions of higher education.

Helga Zepp-LaRouche concluded by reminding the participants that the Oasis Plan gives everyone in the region a “beautiful vision for a joint future,” and that it is the only way to break the cycle of violence and revenge.

Think of the One Humanity, and Make that a Rule of Everything You do.” – International Peace Coalition Meeting #47

The April 26th meeting of the International Peace Coalition

by Daniel Platt

April 24–The 47th consecutive online weekly meeting of the International Peace Coalition began today, with remarks by Schiller Institute Founder Helga Zepp-LaRouche. Zepp-LaRouche identifying the three hot spots which continue to be areas of escalation: the Ukraine war, the Israeli assault on Gaza, and efforts to provoke a China-Taiwan conflict. She pointed to the recently released statistics by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), indicating that military spending reached an all-time high of $2.443 trillion over the past year.

This parallels the rapid arms buildups that took place before each of the two World Wars of the 20th century. European political leaders are blithely saying that war is inevitable. “Nobody talks about diplomacy,” she said. Germany has even established an annual Veterans Day, although the only German veterans are those who served in the war in Afghanistan. She suggested that it were more appropriate to issue an apology to that ruined nation. The danger of a new world war is rapidly increasing, and “any little mistake… any little surprise can trigger a catastrophe.”

Zepp-LaRouche knows China well, having met with political and scientific leaders in many visits to that nation. She critiqued the recent diplomatic deployment by U.S. Secretary of State Tony Blinken in which he called out China for supplying Russia with “dual-use” technologies. This is a clumsy attempt to drive a wedge between the two powers, and an attempt to suppress China’s spectacular industrial development.

She cited recent comments by seasoned observers Ambassador Chas Freeman, Alistaire Crooke, and Scott Ritter, all of whom assessed that Iran’s retaliatory attack on Israel demonstrated the vulnerabilities in Israel’s air defense systems. On the U.S. domestic front, Zepp-LaRouche charged that authorities in the U.S. are using anti-democratic methods against students who are protesting the genocide in Gaza. “If you are suppressing free speech in this way, it is not a sign of strength,” she said, “it is an admission of guilt.”

George Koo, a retired business consultant specializing in U.S.-China trade, and the Chairman of the Burlingame Foundation, followed Zepp-LaRouche. Koo offered an assessment of US-China relations, in the wake of the Blinken follies: “It seems that the Biden administration is a one-trick pony with respect to international relations: speak very loudly and carry a big stick.” China sent a low-level functionary to meet Blinken when he arrived in the country, demonstrating their lack of enthusiasm for his approach to diplomacy. Koo said that he is skeptical of the possibility of nuclear war, asserting that the people in the Pentagon are very aware of China’s advanced military capabilities. If there were a real fire-fight, Koo continued, he doesn’t believe that the Chinese will fire on civilians. They will target U.S. warships.

Jason Ross, representing the LaRouche Organization, reported on his recent interview with Kevork Almassian on the “Syriana Analysis” program, which focused on the unique conceptions that underlie the “Oasis Plan” for peace between Israel and its neighbors. Ross told the meeting that the chronic problem which leads to conflict in Southwest Asia, is that there is not enough water. To address this problem, water infrastructure and desalination are priorities. Ross described two methods of desalination, one using heat distillation, and the other using reverse osmosis, pumping water through a filter. Since desalination is energy-intensive, potable water is an energy problem in the modern world. Ross indicated the great value of nuclear energy, for heating and pumping water, especially in nations not rich in hydrocarbons.

In the spirit of the Oasis plan, Ross called for Southwest Asia to become a region of integration for humanity. He urged peace demonstrators to incorporate a vision of where the region ought to go: replace the paradigm of conflict, otherwise any temporary victory will not be sustained.

Following Ross’ comments, a short video with excerpts from the Schiller Institute’s April 13-14 conference on the Oasis Plan was shown.

During the discussion period, co-moderator Dennis Speed observed that 35 American college campuses are now experiencing “various levels of revolt and resistance.” In an unprecedented action, U.S. House Speaker Mike Johnson went to Columbia University and called for the resignation of the university president. Israeli PM Netanyahu has arrogantly intervened into U.S. politics, calling for the suppression of campus protests. The tactic of accusing protestors of antisemitism is falling flat, however, particularly because the catalytic role of organizations such as Jewish Voices for Peace in the protests, has rendered the anti-Semitic charge ludicrous on its face.

Jacques Cheminade, President of Solidarité & Progrès, reported on the situation in France, where more than 50% of the population thinks that President Macron is talking nonsense. Macron endorsed the German “sky shield” initiative, which would lead to the integration of European air defenses and would mean de facto acceptance of NATO rule over Europe.

A report came in from a participant in the Freedom Flotilla, which is preparing to leave Türkiye with 5,000 tons of food and medical supplies for Gaza. It was scheduled to sail for Gaza today, but there is a delay because its largest vessel sails under the flag of Guinea Bissau, and Israel is pressuring that nation’s government to delay the aid. The organizers have asked peace activists to contact their governments, and Helga Zepp-LaRouche stated that we need a major mobilization to allow the flotilla through. CodePink founder Medea Benjamin, another participant in the Flotilla, has prepared a video with instructions.

Executive Intelligence Review editor Mike Billington reported that Zwelivelile “Mandla” Mandela, grandson of Nelson Mandela, has also joined the flotilla team. Mandela emphasized that his grandfather was always highly engaged with the Palestinians’ struggle, which he called the greatest moral issue of our time. He recounted how San Francisco dockworkers launched an international movement by refusing to load goods for South Africa, and that now we need a similar approach for Israel.

A graduate student in American Economic History participating for the first time in the IPC, asked whether our elected officials are compromised by foreign money, and if so, what can we do? Dennis Small, one of co-moderators, responded, yes, ”but the worst form of colonization of the U.S., is by foreign ideas, by “British liberal empiricism” modes of thinking, spread particularly in academia. Americans have been conditioned to view the world through the lens of geopolitics, the “law of the jungle.” One remedy for that outlook is the Ten Principles for a New Strategic and Development Architecture . The 10th point of Helga Zepp-LaRouche’s “Ten Principles,” the one that asserts that man is essentially good, “drives people crazy” because it contradicts the British Malthusian ideological assertion that you have to gain by destroying somebody else.

In her concluding remarks, Zepp-LaRouche commented with a smile that we must lead the “fight to unify the peace movement,” even though some people “just faint when they hear my name.” She reminded the participants of our historical antecedents, such as the 1648 Peace of Westphalia, where leaders came to realize that no one can enjoy a victory if everyone is dead, and “this is even more true in the age of nuclear weapons.” “Think of the one humanity, and make that a rule of everything you do.”

The Aesthetic Dynamics of Peace – International Peace Coalition Meeting #46

by Kevin Gribbroek

I think the whole concept of the Oasis Plan is exactly to interrupt forever this cycle of Intifada revenge. The whole point is that if there is no justice in allowing a two-state solution and the full equal rights and right to development for all, then the violence will continue…. You have to switch and leave the past behind you and have a beautiful vision of the future, which gives hope to all the participants in the conflict….

This principle of hope and having a beautiful vision is what has to elevate people out of the pit. And art and music and poetry are absolutely important–we are suffering as a humanity of a terrible flatness—of a two-dimensionality in the thinking—which has come along with the monetarist outlook, and just thinking in terms of profit. All of this is just flattening the Earth to two-dimensions, and we must urgently get to a much more beautiful world.

Helga zepp-larouche

April 19—The 46th consecutive meeting of the International Peace Coalition (IPC) was convened today, less than a week after the historic Schiller Institute “Oasis Plan” conference. Although the main focus of the meeting was the Oasis Plan—as a feature of an overall policy of peace through development—an important theme developed towards the end of the proceedings on the importance of beautiful art to inspire and ennoble people; to lift them “out of the pit.” In fact, what became evident, was that beautiful art and economic development are in reality integral parts of the same whole, with power to bring about true, lasting peace by creating for people the vision of a beautiful, more prosperous future.

Helga Zepp-LaRouche, founder of the Schiller Institute and co-founder of the IPC, began the proceedings with her assessment that “we are experiencing one of the most traumatic shifts in the alignment of the world” driven by the emergence of a new world order. As this process unfolds, one can expect “major seizures, and effects, and dramatic convulsions,” including the danger of global war, until we have reached a more peaceful level of cooperation among nations. The IPC is unique in that it’s not simply against war and for peace, but presents a blueprint of how peace can be achieved—peace through economic development. She highlighted the fact that high-ranking diplomats from four nations, Palestine, South Africa, Russia, and Belarus, at the April 13, Schiller Institute conference, openly endorsed the Oasis Plan. However, that same day, Iran launched a missile and drone attack against Israel in retaliation for Israel’s April 1 bombing of the Iranian consulate in Damascus, demonstrating just how close we are to World War III.

The next speaker, Terry Lodge, lawyer and long-time member of Veterans for Peace, described a recent letter sent to President Biden, the State Department, and the Department of Energy. The letter summarizes the history of Israel’s “very troubling” nuclear weapons program, and details the fact that under U.S. law, financial aid must be denied to any country not in compliance with the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. This, of course, would apply to Israel. With no “delusion” that the U.S. will cut aid to Israel, nonetheless he expressed his hope that the IPC will serve as a vehicle for generating international discussion about the Biden administration’s inability to follow its own legal standards. According to Lodge, Benjamin Netanyahu was directly involved in the smuggling operation that resulted in Israel acquiring nuclear weapons technology.

Jack Gilroy, of Pax Christi, gave a report on recent direct-action activities targeting the military-financial complex. On April 15, tax day, Gilroy and his collaborators conducted demonstrations outside three arms manufacturers in the Scranton, Pennsylvania area: General Dynamics, producer of 155mm artillery shells; Lockheed Martin, largest defense corporation in the world, and producer of the laser-guided Paveway bombs; and finally to BAE Systems, producer of the M777 Howitzer.

Jose Vega, independent LaRouche candidate for New York’s 15th District Congressional seat, reported from the Bronx, where he is currently leading a petitioning drive to get his name on the ballot. Vega characterized his campaign as “flooding the Bronx with optimism—spreading a message of hope and peace. Despite the fact that his district in one of the poorest in the nation, with 30% of residents way below the poverty level, his opponent, Congressman Ritchie Torres, is campaigning as a “champion of Israel.” We all must emulate the IPC through a “dialogue and discussion process”:

The residents of the Bronx should be coming together to discuss foreign policy, to discuss international conflicts as well as what’s happening in their own neighborhoods, because it is all one thing. Our foreign policy is our domestic policy, because what’s happening in Gaza, how we treat other countries, is a reflection of how we treat our own country; how we treat our own neighborhoods.

Jose Vega

Ray McGovern, retired CIA analyst and co-founder of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity, spoke about the April 17 opinion piece by Joe Biden in the Wall Street Journal. Biden made a pitch for billions of dollars in supplemental funding for Ukraine, trumpeting its tremendous benefit for the U.S. economy. McGovern called this the Military Industrial Complex on steroids, which will only benefit the rich.

An interesting dialogue emerged as a result of a report given by a leader of the Mexican LaRouche Youth Movement (LYM) during the discussion period. She recounted her experience at a recent pro-Palestine, where a planned showing of the “Oasis Plan” video was preempted by the event organizers in favor of a “horrible, harsh” video showing the gory images of people suffering and dying in Gaza. The event organizers seemed uninterested in discussing solutions, despite their good intentions. The question was asked: How do we get people to understand that these violent, horrific videos do not ennoble and empower, but rather dehumanize and desensitize the population?

Zepp-LaRouche addressed the question by expressing her belief that it is necessary to expose the death and suffering, dwelling on that “breeds hatred and violence and desperation; pessimism” which is counterproductive. What needs to be accomplished is to evoke humanity, “to strengthen that in people which is the divine spark; which makes them reject any such violence forever.” One of the ways to accomplish this is through a truly artistic treatment of the subject. She offered an incredibly moving 3-minute video featuring Dieter Hallervorden, a famous German actor, reciting his poem “GAZA GAZA,” against a video panorama of the destruction of Gaza, and other images, during which he addressed the people of Gaza directly, by turning his back to the audience who thus saw him talking to Gaza, and would turn from time to time back to the audience, invoking compassion and passion for peace.

In her closing remarks, Zepp-LaRouche came back to this theme of aesthetic beauty, tied integrally to the “Westphalian” approach of peace through development–the only way the “cycle of violence” in Southwest Asia can be interrupted. Although this may seem impossible, to survive, people must make an “intellectual jump,” to “leave the past behind, and have a beautiful vision of the future, which gives hope to all participants in the conflict.” She cited Friedrich Schiller’s poem “[[Hope]]”:[[]] “We are born for that which is better!” and concluded by insisting that building the momentum for a development solution is “the dynamic that can move mountains.”

International Peace Coalition Meeting: Overcoming the Tragedy of Geopolitics

by Kevin Gribbroek

If I stopped to think about what is going on in each part of the world, I would only have time to cry. Therefore, I have to do something to act.

Lyndon H. LaROuche Jr.

April 12—One day before the Schiller Institute’s historic Oasis Plan conference, the International Peace Coalition (IPC) convened its 45th consecutive meeting, a remarkable but also crucial accomplishment, given the precarious state of world affairs. A major theme of the meeting was why a new paradigm of peace through development is the only means of resolving major geopolitical flash points, which could very quickly ignite World War III—with a particular focus on the Ukraine war, Southwest Asia, and growing tensions in the South China Sea.

This week’s featured speakers included:

Helga Zepp-LaRouche, Founder Schiller Institute

Dr. George Koo, Retired business consultant specializing in U.S.-China Trade, and Chairman, Burlingame Foundation

Rubén Guzzetti, Argentine Institute for Geopolitical Studies (IADEG)

Coleen Rowley, former FBI special agent and whistleblower

Ray McGovern, former analyst for the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)

Helga Zepp-LaRouche, founder of the Schiller Institute and co-founder of the IPC, began the proceedings with a strategic briefing on the very dangerous developments concerning the escalating showdown between the U.S./UK and their various satellites on one side, and Russia/China/Iran on the other. The most “acute and urgent” threat is that of war between Israel and Iran, driven by Israel’s April 1 missile attack against the Iranian embassy in Damascus, Syria. This could rapidly escalate to global war.

Zepp-LaRouche called on IPC participants to go all out mobilizing for the Oasis Plan conference, which could not have come at a timelier moment. She said,

Unless we get to what we have been discussing from the very beginning, the new paradigm—where we overcome geopolitics with an architecture for security and development which includes all countries of the planet—the theaters of the potential wars will just shift from one crisis spot to the next…. So that should fuel our efforts to really fight for a peace solution which must be just, for all sides. Because the lesson from the Peace of Westphalia is that unless it is just, and takes into account the interests of all, it cannot work.

Helga Zepp-larouche

The next speaker, Dr. George Koo, focused on developments in the “Pacific arena.” He reported on the very positive development of former Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou, who recently visited mainland China with a youth delegation. After an excellent meeting with President Xi Jinping in Beijing, Xi said, “After all, the future of Taiwan and the mainland will be up to the young generation…. Ma Ying-jeou will be welcome to bring another group anytime.” He contrasted this visit with U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen’s recent trip to Beijing, where she criticized China for its “overcapacity.” According to Koo, this is an admission by the U.S. that it can no longer compete with China. He warned against the United States using its “loyal lap dogs”—Japan, South Korea and the Philippines—as proxies against China. Like President Putin, President Xi does not bluff and will take active measures to protect China’s national sovereignty.

Rubén Guzzetti began his remarks by expressing the IADEG’s full solidarity with the Schiller Institute, and support for its initiatives against the “onslaught of Western powers, which is leading us into a dead end.” He then proceeded to report on the history of Western efforts to subjugate the peoples of South America, starting with the 1806–07 British invasion and occupation of Buenos Aires. This intensified after World War II with the consolidation of the United States as the “new Western empire.” Today, the estimate is that the U.S. and UK have 77 military bases in South America. The election of Javier Milei as President of Argentina has further opened the door for U.S./NATO subversion of the continent. But the IADEG has a plan to fight this government, and will be holding a national mobilization on May 9.

Coleen Rowley, a former FBI agent, legal expert and whistle blower, reported that she will be participating in the Freedom Flotilla Coalition, in which volunteers will be sailing relief ships laden with 5,500 tons of food and medicine to the shores of Gaza to provide aid for the Palestinians. She asked all IPC participants to do everything possible to spread news of the Freedom Flotilla. Even though relief workers have been killed, in the aftermath of the ICJ’s ruling against Israel, maximum publicity surrounding the Flotilla’s mission may succeed in causing Israel to back off. However, in the past, besides outright murder, Israel had taken people engaged in this type of relief effort prisoner, a risk Rowley and her fellow volunteers are willing to take: “If we can end the siege of Gaza, that could be a first step towards peaceful development in the rest of the world.” Helga Zepp-LaRouche pledged that she would make sure that news of the Flotilla will be circulated every day internationally to focus the eyes of the world on this courageous initiative.

Ray McGovern, following Rowley, asked : Why does President Joe Biden “insist on challenging the rest of the world, including two major nuclear powers?” Biden himself answered that question during a recent 60 Minutes interview: When asked if he thought it would be unwise to get involved in a two-front war, he said, “We’re the United States of America—the most powerful country in the history of the world!”—madness, according to McGovern. He asked that everyone hope and pray that his good friend Coleen Rowley and the Flotilla expedition succeed in getting the food and medicine into Gaza.

Dennis Small of the Schiller Institute opened the discussion with the news flash that the Embassy of South Africa in Mexico had just posted an invitation for the Oasis Plan conference to both their Facebook and X social media accounts. The Ambassador of South Africa to Mexico, H.E. Beryl Rose Sisulu, will be speaking at the conference.

Bolivar Télles, a leader of the Central American and Caribbean Critical Thought organization in Nicaragua, reported on his nation’s case against Germany before the ICJ, accusing Berlin of violating the Genocide Convention by providing Israel with military support. Germany has emphatically denied these charges.

Zepp-LaRouche referring to the report by Télles, characterizing the German government’s harsh rejection of the charges as “tragic.” Germany, she said does not bare sole responsibility for the Holocaust detailing international support for Hitler. “Collective guilt” is being used as a means of manipulating the German people into supporting Israel no matter what. With the growing recognition by the Global South of the genocide against the Palestinians, if Germany, along with the U.S. and EU, continue their support for Israel’s mass murder of civilians, they will be isolated from the rest of the world. This is a tragedy, because a new economic system will not function without the U.S. and Europe: “It creates the seed of a geopolitical catastrophe.”

This can be changed, she concluded, “because we have the overwhelming majority of the people of the world at our side.” In reference to the Oasis Plan conference, she said it is the “starting point of a real revolution” to usher in the new era of “peace through development, because nothing else will solve the problem.”

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