|Russia and the CIS News Digest
LaRouche: Russia Sees That Global System Does Not Work
Sept. 10 (EIRNS)Lyndon LaRouche today stated that he is "fully sympathetic" with the steps taken in recent weeks by the Russian government of President Medvedev and Prime Minister Putin, on behalf of world peace. They are on to the fact that the global system has entirely broken down and does not work, LaRouche noted, and that a solution must include the United States, a United States reoriented around the policies associated with Franklin Delano Roosevelt.
LaRouche blasted others in Russia, such as the views expressed by Yuri Gromyko in a recent interview in Argumenty i Facty, for being "totally disoriented" on the strategic situation. "Yuri should stop listening to strange voices," LaRouche stated, "and start listening to me again, which he hasn't done for a number of years. I will straighten him out, so that he and others are not used by the friends of George Soros in Russia who are deployed against me," LaRouche said.
Putin: 'Russia Will Never Forget' Ties with USA of FDR and Lincoln
Sept. 13 (EIRNS)The theme of Lyndon LaRouche's forthcoming Oct 1 international webcast will be: "Now More Than Ever, the Big Four": an alliance of the U.S., Russia, China and India to replace the present bankrupt monetary system with a Rooseveltian international credit system. Russia's leadership has sent another signal of how it would receive such a proposal from the USA.
In an interview with Le Figaro, Prime Minister Putin responded to a question about his expectations for U.S.-Russian relations: "I expect that relations should improve, but it is up to the Americans to make the effort, because the situation has deteriorated due to their sole responsibility. During the time of Lincoln, an American Secretary of State said that the United States wanted privileged relations with Russia, because Russia always desires the well-being of America.
"Since that time, a lot of water has flowed under the bridge. Our relations, depending on the moment, have had different characteristics. But always, when situations became extreme, the United States and Russia found themselves side by side. This was the case during the two World Wars. Russia will never forget it, and hopes that our American partners won't either."
British Hissy-Fit vs. Russia: Hit the Ruble
Sept. 11 (EIRNS)Fresh from the disappointment of failed attempts to bluff Russia into a strategic backdown in Georgia, the miffed British financial media are beating the drums for a financial attack on the ruble. The Financial Times of Sept. 5 headlined, "Moscow Forced To Support the Troubled Rouble," which argued that recent Russian Central Bank's interventions to support the ruble showed that major capital flight is underway. In a Sept. 11 meeting with President Dmitri Medvedev, Federal Financial Markets Service head Vladimir Milovidov reported that net capital outflow from Russia of $5 billion in August was not as severe as last January's $10 billion, while Russia remains $25 billion ahead, year to date.
In the same issue of the Financial Times, radical free-marketeer Anders Aslund, Senior Fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics, listed five demands by which "The European Union and U.S. should impose ethical and legal standards that make it costly for Russia to misbehave." The list includes having open access to Russian energy pipelines; forcing Gazprom to break up its "monopolies"; stepping up investigations of money-laundering by Russians; stopping Russia from courting Western businesses; and seeking evidence of corruption by President Putin.
Medvedev Proposes Russian 'International Financial Center'
Sept. 12 (EIRNS)Russian President Dmitri Medvedev told a conference at the Kremlin yesterday that Russia must set up an international financial center in Moscow, RBC.ru reported. Medvedev's proposal, already made in his election manifesto and at the St. Petersburg Economic Forum, is to make Moscow "a powerful financial centre in the world and ruble into one of the leading regional currencies," RBC said. Recent events on global exchange markets, rising inflation, and the cash and liquidity crisis, "have called into question the leadership of traditional financial centers in the world and their ability to adjust the situation," RBC paraphrased Medvedev.
Medvedev instructed not only government economic ministers, but also Central Bank head Sergey Ignatyev, Sberbank president German Gref, VTB head Andrey Kostin, RTS head Roman Goryunov, and MICEX head Alexander Potemkin to come up with proposals promptly to make Moscow a world financial center.
Putin Warns Britain on Provocations vs. Russia
Sept. 11 (EIRNS)In an interview with the Times of London, Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin warned the British that relations between the two nations would never improve, as long as London remained a base for anti-Russian operations. Referencing the activities of former Russian "oligarch" Boris Berezovsky, and Chechen rebel leader Akhmad Zakayev, Putin asked Britain "why are you allowing the territory of Great Britain to fight Russia? Why do you allow Great Britain to be used as a launch pad? That is why it is not possible to build a normal relationship."
Putin described George W. Bush as a man of honor and dignity, but added that he is not really in charge of U.S. affairs. "I still hope we can maintain good relations," he said, but admonished that "it is the court that makes the King." Putin remarked that "I treat President Bush better than some Americans would," in a tone described by the Times as "half-joking." But he very seriously warned the U.S. not to repeat the mistakes of the Roman Empire. "A Roman politician began and ended every speech saying that Carthage had to be destroyed. Eventually Carthage was destroyed and the area around it assaulted, but the Roman Empire was eventually destroyed by the Barbarians. We have to look out for Barbarians."
Cheney Gets Cold Shoulder in Baku
Sept. 6 (EIRNS)-U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney got a "cold welcome" from Azerbaijan President Ilham Aliyev in Baku on Sept. 3, the Russian newspaper Kommersant reported from its sources in Azerbaijan yesterday. Aliyev "sent a clear message that Baku won't support the idea to redirect the energy resources pipelines so that they would omit Russia. He came to that conclusion watching the developments in the neighboring Georgia," the paper wrote. Presidential sources told Kommersant that "the talks turned out pretty tough.... Aliyev sent a clear message that, although he appreciates good relations with Washington, he is not going to have a row with Moscow. In fact it meant that under the present circumstances Baku decided to bide its time without fostering the [EU-backed] Nabucco oil pipeline project."
Russian-Venezuelan Naval Maneuvers Planned
Sept. 9 (EIRNS)Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez announced during a Sept. 7 TV show, that the Venezuelan Navy will carry out maneuvers jointly with the Russian Navy in the Caribbean Nov. 10-14. This, he emphasized, occurs in the framework of having established Russia as a "strategic ally" of Venezuela during his last trip to Moscow at the end of July, when he also discussed military purchases. He denied that Russian military bases would be set up in Venezuela. Chávez said the exercises were agreed upon long before the crisis around Georgia's attack on South Ossetia. A Russian foreign ministry spokesman confirmed the plans.
Baikal Investment Forum Opens
Sept. 9 (EIRNS)The 5th Baikal Economic Forum opened today in Irkutsk to discuss "Europe-Russia-Asia-Pacific Region: Roads of Integration and Cooperation." There was to be special emphasis on creating a Europe-Russia-APR transportation corridor and setting up logistics systems of Federal and international importance at the meeting, Itar Tass reported. Another key issue under consideration, will be how to increase the population of Siberia, which is essential if the region is to be developed. At the same time, however, the official in charge of Russia's Far East development projects, First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov, emphasized public-private partnerships and globalization, saying that the Russian economy would become more open. A large part of the Russian government attended, including Minister of Economics Elvira Nabiullina, Transportation Minister Igor Levitin, and Minister of Natural Resources Yuri Trutnev.
Another forum, "Mega-Projects of Russia" was addressed by Minister of Regional Development Dmitri Kozak in Yakutsk Sept. 6. Discussion focussed on large projects as a component of the Strategy for the Russian Federation's Development till 2020.