From Volume 7, Issue 40 of EIR Online, Published Sept. 30, 2008

Western European News Digest

Tremonti: Paulson Plan Makes Innocent Pay

Sept. 24 (EIRNS)—In a long interview with today's Italian daily Il Foglio, Italian Economy Minister Giulio Tremonti attacked U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson's $700 billion bailout plan, and called again for a new Bretton Woods.

"There is an enormous quantity of debt falling due, a promissory note to be paid," he said, explaining that the cost of the crisis "might be paid by the taxpayer, because the public bailout is a way to shift the bill from the guilty to the innocent, from the insanity of finance to the taxpayer's pocket. Or, it could be paid through inflation: a large inflation able to absorb in a short time large debt positions. And therefore, again to the cost of collectivity, inflation being a tax and an unjust one. Or, [it could be paid] with something else, which is better not to speak about."

"It is evident that at the beginning there has not been a full and immediate understanding of the dimensions of the crisis," Tremonti added.

Stockholm EIR Seminar on New Bretton Woods

Sept. 25 (EIRNS)—A Sept. 24 seminar in Stockholm, Sweden to present Helga Zepp-LaRouche's Resolution for a New Bretton Woods to the diplomatic community, was attended by a number of diplomats, including two ambassadors, and a journalist from one of the leading Chinese dailies. Among those represented were African, Eastern European, and Ibero-American countries.

The diplomats questioned the speakers on the crisis and about the diplomatic response from their own countries to Lyndon LaRouche's proposal.

Tremonti: Some EU Banks as Bad as U.S. Banks

Sept. 27 (EIRNS)—Giulio Tremonti said today, in an interview with La7 TV network, that in many European banks, "there is something very similar to America." Italy is better equipped than other nations to face the crisis "because in Italy, we still have manufacturing," but the crisis in the U.S.A. "is shifting from large institutions to people's lives. The American standard of living is sharply dropping. Everything costs more, they have less money, and this can shift the crisis from finance to the people and to small banks."

Tremonti proposed to enlarge the G8 to 14 countries and, in such an institution, "rewrite regulations, for instance on trade or finance." French President Nicolas Sarkozy agrees on the enlargement, Tremonti said. He mentioned South Africa and Brazil as among the countries to be included.

IMF: Europe Is 'Unprepared' for Collapse

Sept. 27 (EIRNS)—At a meeting of financial supervisors and central bank officials today in Frankfurt, the IMF warned that the Eurozone is badly equipped to face a major banking insolvency, due to the absence of a cross-border lender of last resort. "In case of insolvency, the European formula is not precise enough to solve a possible cross-border problem," said Jaime Caruana, IMF director for capital markets. Europeans should get ready for "the worst case," he said. And Alessandro Leipold, IMF director for Europe, said that "all countries should prepare their own emergency plans." "The Europeans should better prepare themselves for the worst scenario, as concerns the banking crisis, and not lower their guard concerning the stability of their [financial] institutes," he added.

Eurocrats, like the chairman of the monetary affairs committee of the Europarliament, Pervenche Beres, called on the EU Commission to present "courageous plans" to improve bank oversight at a supranational level. Some are pushing to give more power to central banks, like a group of German Christian Democratic Members of Parliament who, at the beginning of the week, proposed to transfer oversight powers from the Bafin (German Financial Supervisory Authority) to the Bundesbank (central bank), reports the Italian daily Il Sole 24 Ore.

Soros Agency Declares War on Nation-State

Sept. 25 (EIRNS)— The European Council on Foreign Relations (ECFR), created last year by George Soros, is proposing an all-out political war by the European Union against Russia and China, and against other nations which, with those two, try to defend the existence of sovereign nations. The Council issued a policy paper reporting that the European Union has lost influence at the United Nations, in favor of an "Axis of Sovereignty"—countries that vote in the UN to support the pro-national sovereignty positions of Russia and China.

The report presents patterns of voting by member countries of the United Nations, to show that the Asian, Muslim, and Latin American nations are increasingly siding with Russia and China and against the European Union, even while the EU countries work in close coordination with one another.

The report favors eliminating the Russian and Chinese Security Council vetoes, having Britain and France unashamedly work through their colonial ("Commonwealth" and Francophone") channels for influence against Russia, and to split up the Islamic nations. The authors call on the EU to pay more for NGOs (i.e., Soros) to lobby the UN.

French Prime Minister calls for National Unity in Face of Financial Crisis

PARIS, Sept. 27 (EIRNS)—Speaking last night at a UMP party event, Prime Minister François Fillon called for "national unity" in the light of the international financial crisis: "Times are difficult.... There are moments when national unity imposes itself," he said. "For several days, the American financial storm has been being amplified. It's a major crisis which is pushing the entire world financial system to the brink. It is a crisis of the type that occurs only once or twice in a century."

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