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Chilean Farmers Toss Out Produce To Protest Miserable Profits, High Cost of Inputs

Aug. 1 (EIRNS)—Tomato farmers in the northern Chilean city of Arica protested the high price of fertilizer and other inputs by tossing their tomatoes all over Route 5 North highway on July 11, cutting off all transit on the road for several hours. Producers told ADN radio that between what they have to pay for inputs and the low price they receive from merchants, it’s impossible to earn a decent profit. So, they reasoned, they wouldn’t be losing much by tossing the tomatoes onto the highway and blocking traffic.

There is generalized discontent among Chilean farmers, as seen in testimony given by several producers who addressed the Senate Agriculture Commission on May 16 to document their situation. Drought is a huge problem for farmers, compounded by the high price of inputs, lack of fertilizer, etc. In many drought-stricken areas, producers are forced to fire their workers and stop exporting because production of quality produce is impossible.

One producer, who had farmed for 30 years, warned the Senators that Chilean agriculture is facing a crisis, and that the nation’s food security is in jeopardy. And, he said, the problem isn’t just national, but global. This is an emergency, he stressed.


Uzbek President Urges: Engage With Afghanistan at Tashkent Conference

Uzbek President Urges: Engage With Afghanistan at Tashkent Conference

July 28, 2022 (EIRNS)—A July 26-27 conference in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, brought together 100 delegations representing 30 countries, to discuss the current situation in Afghanistan and prospects for future development. The conference was convened by Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev, who has taken the lead in urging the international community to help stabilize Afghanistan economically and politically.

The members of the Afghan delegation who attended, led by acting Foreign Minister Amir Khan Muttaqi, were reportedly upbeat and came with a message that their government had taken certain steps to comply with international requirements and that they now required Western investment. In this context they called for the U.S. and its Western allies to unfreeze the $9 billion in funds that were illegally seized from Afghanistan’s Central Bank in August of 2021 after the Taliban took power. Russia’s representative, Zamir Kubilov, called the West’s seizure of those funds “outright robbery,” TASS reported.

One proposal that is reportedly being discussed by U.S. and Swiss officials, and which has a bad stench to it, is the idea of setting up a special trust fund with the seized assets that would be managed by an international board—out of the control of the Afghan government. It would be modeled on the World Bank’s corrupt Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund, which threw around money on failed projects that did nothing to improve the lives of Afghan citizens, keeping the old, rotten structures in place. A careful investigation of this proposal is in order.

Speaking on behalf of President Mirziyoyev, presidential envoy Abdulaziz Kamilov delivered a forceful message. He warned that the international isolation of Afghanistan “shall inevitably lead to further deterioration of the humanitarian situation. It is important not to allow this, since the fate of millions is at stake.” The Afghan government has taken certain steps to improve the socioeconomic situation and establish friendly relations with neighboring countries and mutually-beneficial cooperation with the international community. “We must foster this and endorse these efforts,” Mirziyoyev said, while at the same time insisting that the international community’s conditions for formal diplomatic recognition—an inclusive government representing all layers of society with full respect for human rights–be met.


Lavrov’s In-Depth Briefing on the Strategic Situation to African Union Members

July 28 (EIRNS)—Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov culminated his four-nation African tour on July 27 in Addis Ababa with a thorough, broad-ranging briefing at the Russian embassy to the permanent representatives of the member countries of the 55-nation African Union and to the accredited diplomatic corps in Ethiopia. As he did in similar briefings in the three other nations he visited—Egypt, Uganda and the Republic of Congo—Lavrov cut through Western lies about how Russia had caused the global food and fertilizer shortage, explaining the role that sanctions played, but also hitting the “reckless policy of the Western countries on the so-called Green Transition, and all this has brought the price of fertilizers high, which of course affected the price of food.” Problems in the world food market actually started at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, he noted.

The Foreign Minister also went through a detailed history of the 2014 Maidan coup, the years-long assault by Kiev Nazis on the populations of the Donbas and the “red lines” that Russia had established, the crossing of which would force to respond.

Lavrov made clear that a new paradigm is emerging to replace the old “rules based order” –an order in which there is “no single criteria, no single principle except one. If I want something, you have to obey. If you don’t obey you will be punished.” He expressed the certainty that the overwhelming majority of the world’s countries don’t want to live “as if the colonial times came back.” They prefer to be independent, to rely on their own tradition, their history, and their old friends. They don’t wish to betray their old friends. That is clear, he said, in the fact that except for two or three developing countries, “no one else in Africa, Asia or Latin America joined the illegal American and European sanctions” against Russia.

Most normal countries, Lavrov said, want to be independent, want to choose their own development model, based on the will of their people. “Nobody wants to have enemies.” 
Contrast this to NATO, he said, which as it just did at its Madrid meeting, “appoints enemies, they appoint the order in which they handle these enemies. Now Russia is the first, China is earmarked as the existential challenge for the long term.” Now, the West is trying to figure out how to confiscate Russian money, but “if they become irritated by somebody else tomorrow or the day after, they might do the same.” There is no rationality in the way the West operates, Lavrov emphasizes.

This is the context in which Lavrov suggested that reliance on the dollar as the instrument supporting the world economy “is not very promising,” and it’s not by accident that more and more countries are shifting to using alternative currencies, shifting to use national currencies more and more “and this process will be gaining momentum.” He cautioned that Russia isn’t proposing a revolution against the dollar and the U.S., but the point is that the U.S. has tossed out all principles of the free market, fair competition, sanctity of private property, presumption of innocence. “All these principles have been thrown down the drain.” They are now punishing Russia, he said, but warned that any other country that “irritates” them will be punished likewise. This is a full transcript of Minister Lavrov’s remarks and questions to him.


SCO Foreign Ministers Debate Regional Challenges, Expanded Membership

Sept. 28, 2022 (EIRNS)—Foreign Ministers of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) wrapped up their two-day meeting in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, today having discussed the agenda for the Sept. 15-16 summit of the group’s heads of state and touched on several other topics of regional and international importance—the war in Ukraine, the Afghan situation, food and energy security, the threat of global recession, and the need to cooperate on regional issues, including on projects that are part of China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). Given the increasingly complex international situation, the ministers stressed the importance of safeguarding regional security and stability.

One expert cited by Global Times noted the attractiveness of the SCO to many neighboring countries, given its emphasis on cooperation and regional development. Members also discussed ongoing cooperation for SCO expansion. Belarus’s application for full membership was discussed according to BeLTA news agency. SCO Secretary General Zhang Ming reported that the SCO has received 11 applications to join the organization in one or another capacity, or to upgrade existing status. He mentioned that at the Sept. 15-16 heads-of-state summit in Samarkand, Uzbekistan, “we expect the SCO heads of state to adopt a memorandum of obligations for the Islamic Republic of Iran to receive SCO membership.”

It was stressed that SCO expansion is not a response to NATO expansion but rather related to SCO’s focus on regional cooperation rather than confrontation. 

 On the sidelines of the conference, there were several bilateral meetings, including one between China’s Wang Yi and Russia’s Sergey Lavrov. A meeting between Wang and Indian External Affairs Minister Dr. S. Jaishankar had been mooted but it’s not clear whether it took place, given tensions between those two nations. Jaishankar did meet with Lavrov. Wang also met with Uzbek Acting Foreign Minister Norov Vladimir Imamovich to stress their excellent relationship and Imamovich’s commitment to Uzbek development and revitalization.

Lavrov and Wang had a substantive discussion, TASS reported, stressing, among other things, the SCO’s leading role “in building a regional security architecture and its constructive contribution to the process of maintaining peace and stability and ensuring economic development in Eurasia,” according to a statement from the Russian Foreign Ministry. Ministers from all eight member countries attended the summit: China, Russia, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan. Currently Belarus, Afghanistan, Iran, and Mongolia are observer nations. Dialogue partners are Azerbaijan, Armenia, Cambodia, Nepal, Turkey, and Sri Lanka.


Zepp-LaRouche on CGTN Radio: Immorality of Sanctions & Import of Russia-Ukraine Grain Deal

Found here is a segment of Helga Zepp-LaRouche’s interview with Ge Anna at CGTN World Today done July 25 in which Zepp-LaRouche insists on the immorality of sanctions for all countries. This segment was Tweeted out by Ms. Ge Anna which can be heard at the link.

In the longer interview with Ms. Ge Anna, Mrs. Zepp-LaRouche also takes up the multi-layered importance of the just concluded Russia-Ukraine grain deal which can be heard here in the second segment start minute 15:12″ to 26:58″ using the play button at the left.


R-CALF USA Sent Support to the Dutch Farmers Against Global, Green Cartels

July 23, 2022 (EIRNS)–R-CALF USA, the largest association of independent cattlemen in the United States, on July 21, issued a statement of support to farmers in The Netherlands, protesting against the impossible green government mandates, to cut nitrous emissions and run-off by 2023. Bill Bullard, R-CALF USA CEO, stated, “Dutch farmers are facing an immediate threat to their livelihoods, liberty and independence. America’s cattle farmers and ranchers are on the cusp of suffering the same fate, which is why R-CALF USA supports the Dutch farmer-protestors who are fighting on the front line.” He said that the Dutch government is disregarding “any concern for reductions in food production almost certain to occur under the mandate.”

R-CALF USA, based in Montana, stands for Ranchers-Cattlemen Action Legal Fund United Stockgrowers of America, and they have led the charge in recent years, fighting in the courts, Congress and public arena, against the Big Four cartel of meatpackers which dominates 85% of U.S. beef processing—Tysons, Cargill, JBS, and Marfrig.

R-CALF USA has also exposed how the “green” agenda is used as a cover for attacking cattlemen, and cutting the food supply, as in the case of the Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef. R-CALF USA leader Tracy Hunt, a rancher and attorney in Wyoming, has exposed the GRSB as a front group for the likes of the World Wildlife Fund, cartels, and those who want depopulation.

Bullard denounced the Dutch government for trying “to whip many or all of its nation’s farmers into submission. We urge all Americans to join with us in admonishing the Dutch government’s action and to stand in support of Dutch farmers.”

Bullard has stressed the particular point that his rancher group has long opposed allowing beef imports into the U.S. from The Netherlands–a big beef-exporter–or other export source nations for the world meat cartels, but R-CALF USA supports the Dutch farmers. He said, “This isn’t about trade policy. The Netherlands is ground zero for a globalized effort to control the food supply and those who produce it.” 

Bullard issued a video statement on the Dutch farmers’ protest this last week, which is linked from his July 21 statement, which now is also circulating in German in Europe.


People First – Defend the Farmers Against Green Policies and Speculators!

July 11, 2022 (EIRNS)–Alf Schmidt, a sheep producer and farm leader from Thuringia, addressed the Bueso national convention on July 2 in Frankfurt with a hard hitting, extensive insight on the insanity and deliberate destructive agricultural policies, which are perpetrated in Germany by current “Green” leader Cem Özdemir, Federal Minister of Food and Agriculture, as well as by government leaders in The Netherlands and all over Europe. 

Schmidt started his remarks by asking “Why were there no greenies in East Germany [GDR]?” The answer? “Education was mandatory.”

His presentation title was “Özedemir’s Agricultural Policies – Food as a Weapon.”  With many examples and frightening anecdotes, he showed how agricultural production in Germany is being further and further destroyed and ultimately made completely impossible – by increasingly crazy legal requirements and regulations imposed in the name of animal, environmental and climate protection. 

The speech was a very shocking eye-opener for the audience, and made clear how urgent it is to create international alliances between farmers, entrepreneurs, and all other citizens, for the common good, before vital productive activity in all areas is completely ruined, and the basis for human existence has vanished.

Some examples: As a sheep farmer, Schmidt has recorded around €1.2 million in damage caused by the return of wolves. The demanded reduction in the use of fertilizers, would reduce the quality of the grain so much that it can be used only as fodder, but no longer as bread grain. Large areas of land would be taken away from agricultural production for insect protection and water protection. The stricter regulations for animal transport would be practically impossible to meet. 

In the end, agriculture in Germany would be shut down and Germany would become completely dependent on food imports from abroad. The independent farmers would be ruined, and the land would be bought up by large companies. He said that it was already becoming apparent that food production would decline drastically.

 Finally, he showed a video statement by Sieta van Keimpema, press officer of the Farmers Defense Force and chairwoman of the European Milk Board, who explained for a German audience the reason for the farmers’ protests in the Netherlands: the government had decided on drastic conditions aimed at forcing one third of all farmers to give up their farms.

Alf Schmidt spoke at the international Schiller Institute conference Nov. 14-15, 2021 in the panel on physical economy.


Indian Farmers Prepare for Action Again

Indian Farmers Prepare for Action Again

July 11 (EIRNS) – There are signs that Indian farmers, who were first to stage a sustained – and apparently successful — national protest against the cartelization of agriculture, in 2021, are ready to join in what has now become an international wave of farmers’ protests against inflation and restrictions on their ability to farm. Several Indian English-language publications in India, including The Federal are reporting the Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) is getting ready to come out on tractors again after a year in which their producer prices have skyrocketed and BKU says the Modi government has been trying to sabotage the Minimum Support Price agreed as a result of the last farmers’ strike.

While a protest demonstration (without tractors) has already been underway for three days in Haryana State in India, BKU leader Rakesh Tikait said on July 10, “Yes, I did ask (farmers) to keep their tractors ready, since one doesn’t know where one needs to go now. However, a tractor is needed on the fields … or any other place…. The movement will go on. Farmers’ expenses are going up. Unemployment is getting worse. The government doesn’t want to address these issues.”


Farmers Stand Up Throughout Europe

Farmers Stand Up Throughout Europe

July 8, 2022 (EIRNS)—Many of them inspired by the Dutch insurgency, farmers in other European nations are standing up. The Italian Twitter site Radiogenova is covering Dutch, German, Polish, Italian and Spanish farmer actions. They covered Spanish protests July 1 and they covered Polish protests yesterday: “Polish farmers also rise up in Warsaw: ‘That’s enough! We won’t let ourselves be robbed!’ They accuse the political class of destabilizing production by raising interest rates, which does not stop inflation: ‘We workers cannot pay for the crisis created by the politicians!’”

Several independent regional farmers associations have started protest actions in Italy. On July 6, farmers in Calabria, supported by colleagues from Sardinia and Latium, staged a tractor demonstration in Lamezia Terme (Calabria), under the slogan “Stop the Speculators Who Bring Down Farmers.” A press release by the “Movimento Territorio e Agricoltura” (MTA) explains that the action is against “the politicians” who, “instead of listening to producers’ demands,” are protecting those who want to turn Italian agriculture “into a big trading platform in the hands of financial speculation.” Italian farmers cannot survive under the current production costs, especially gasoline, but also fertilizers, seeds, etc. The statement says the Lamezia Terme demonstration will be followed by similar ones throughout Italy.

On its Facebook page, the MTA blasts established trade unions as well and looks at the mobilization of Dutch farmers. They posted several videos and comments such as “This is a revolution!”


Beijing Formally Backs Argentina’s Entry Into the BRICS

July 8 (EIRNS)—In his meeting with Argentine Foreign Minister Santiago Cafiero in Bali, Indonesia where both were attending the meeting of G20 foreign ministers, China’s State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi offered Beijing’s formal support for Argentina’s entry into the BRICS grouping of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. The foreign ministry issued a press release to this effect and Cafiero told the state news agency Telam that “China chairs the BRICS this year, and its support and commitment to nominate our country to join is fundamental.” In their meeting, Wang Yi stressed the importance of President Alberto Fernández having attended the BRICS-Plus meeting on June 24 and Argentina having formally entered the Belt and Road Initiative during his visit to Beijing in February of this year.

The two foreign ministers also discussed Argentina’s role as rotating president of the Community of Latin America and Caribbean States (CELAC), from which post it also promotes the China-CELAC Joint Action Plan 2022-2024. According to Argentina’s foreign ministry, Cafiero told Wang Yi that his nation can contribute to the BRICS by strengthening and amplifying a voice in defense of the interests of developing nations.

Telam observed that membership in the BRICS could provide Argentina a way to free itself from the dollar-based financial system and the restrictions it imposes on the country’s macroeconomic development. Argentina is in need of new sources of financing for its large infrastructure projects, Telam adds, and points out that the BRICS are playing a crucial role in “promoting a new international financial architecture through its New Development Bank,” the BRICS bank. The New Development Bank, Cafiero emphasized, “has a key role in international financial cooperation and in promoting the agenda of the Global South and the structural changes it demands.” The Telam article can be read here.


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