From Volume 7, Issue 48 of EIR Online, Published Nov. 25, 2008

Ibero-American News Digest

British Attempt To Silence LaRouche in Argentine Congress Fails

Nov. 18 (EIRNS)—Acting on behalf of Her Majesty's empire, the Argentine-British Parliamentary Friendship Group in Argentina's Congress tried to cancel the scheduled showing of Lyndon LaRouche's Nov. 18 webcast in an auditorium of the Argentine Congress. The attempt failed. The showing came off, albeit after a scramble to find a new room in the Congress.

The videoconference had been approved two weeks before, and the LaRouche Youth Movement had put up hundreds of posters announcing the event in universities, ministries, and other centers in Buenos Aires. But the day before the webcast, a Congressional office informed the LYM that the showing was cancelled, because the Argentine-British Friendship Parliamentary Committee had requested that very room, at the same time, for a discussion, ironically enough, of freedom of speech!

This was no Argentine action. This Congressional group of "Friends of the Empire" was created at the behest of British Ambassador John Hughes in 2005. This past Nov. 7, the would-be British colonials organized a barbecue for Ambassador Hughes, who is leaving his post, in order to freely discuss "without jackets or ties" (and who knows what else) past collaboration between the Congress group and the British Embassy, and to "plan new initiatives for the future."

Argentina Re-Nationalizes Pension System; Chileans Say 'Do It Here!'

Nov. 21 (EIRNS)—With a vote of 46-18, the Argentine Senate yesterday passed legislation submitted by President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner which nationalizes the private pension system established in 1994, which was modeled on that created in 1981 in Chile by the fascist Pinochet dictatorship.

In Argentina, it was then-President and International Monetary Fund poster-boy Carlos Menem, and his Harvard-trained Finance Minister Domingo Cavallo, who did the City of London's bidding in setting up the private system, with the intention of eventually doing away with the state-run system altogether.

Now, the $25 billion in private pension funds are returned to state control, with the stipulation that they be invested in long-term infrastructure and productive projects domestically, but absolutely not invested abroad. In Chile, almost 80% of the private pension fund of $110 billion was invested in speculative instruments abroad, garnering losses this year estimated to be between a third and 40% of the total.

It is instructive that of the 39 people who stood up in the Senate to speak about the bill, including supporters and opponents, no one defended the private system. In fact, a majority of the speakers charged that the AFJPs, or private funds, had "looted" workers. "This is a historic day of reparations to workers and retirees," Labor Minister Carlos Tomada jubilantly declared. "This is a law which once against establishes the State as the main guarantor of social security."

The government's victory has left people such as former IMF official Claudio Loser, now at Wall Street's Inter-American Dialogue, out of sorts. Writing in the Latin American Advisor newsletter, he bellowed that the pension nationalization was "one of the most blatant acts of financial piracy in the country's recent history."

But across the Andes, activists who have fought for years to overturn Pinochet's private pension system, are thrilled, seeing it as a hopeful sign for Chile. One feisty organizer who worked with the LaRouche movement in 2005-06 to expose George Bush's plan to privatize Social Security Chilean style, told EIR News Service that, "to be provocative, I've said that [President Michelle] Bachelet should have the balls to do what Cristina did!"

Ecuador Challenges Usury of Foreign Debt System

Nov. 20 (EIRNS)—Presented today with the final report of the government's Commission to Audit the Public Debt, Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa announced that his government will seek to halt payments on the foreign debt, because it is "illegitimate, corrupt, and illegal." Those who contracted the debt "through trickery, blackmail, and treason" should repay it, he suggested.

Six days before, Ecuador failed to make a $30.6 million interest payment due on its Global 2012 bond, announcing it would use the 30-day grace period which the debt contract allows, to review the situation and consider if the debt was legitimate or not.

Correa defined the debt audit as Ecuador's contribution to setting parameters for reform of the international financial architecture.

The 172-page final report was issued after a year of painstakingly sifting through what documentation exists (and doesn't exist!) on 30 years of ever-expanding foreign debt. The mechanisms employed typify the system of debt looting imposed on all developing nations under the Anglo-Dutch floating-exchange-rate system begun in 1971. The report effectively lays bare the illegality of a monetary system, as opposed to an anti-usury sovereign credit system as adopted in the U.S. Constitution.

The extent of the looting is seen in the debt totals themselves. Ecuador's foreign commercial debt alone grew from US$115.7 million in 1976, to over US$4.1 billion in 2006. Over that same period, Ecuador's net transfers to international private banks totalled US$7.13 billion. This looting mechanism is what EIR has dubbed "banker's arithmetic": $115.7 million minus $7.13 billion equals $4.16 billion! Pure usury.

What Fool Would Listen to a Nazi Drug-Pusher Like Soros?

Nov. 20 (EIRNS)—The decision to invite the unrepentant, Nazi-trained speculator George Soros to be a featured speaker at this weekend's conference on "The Emerging Global Financial Order: A Regional Perspective," in the Dominican Republic, discredits that seminar in advance as a worthless event. Soros is the leading drug-pusher in the Caribbean, and anything that features him is to be abhorred, Lyndon LaRouche remarked today.

The conference is being co-sponsored by President Leonel Fernández and the United Nation's Economic Commission on Latin America. Several Presidents of Central America and the Caribbean are scheduled to attend, along with Western Hemisphere IMF director Nicolas Eyzaguirre, Organization of American States secretary general José Miguel Insulza, the finance ministers of Mexico and Brazil, among others.

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