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This statement appears in the November 11, 2011 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.

Arms Buildup in the Gulf:
Stop the Third World War!

by Helga Zepp-LaRouche

[PDF version of this statement]

Nov. 5—World peace is in the greatest danger. The G20 heads of state meeting yesterday in Cannes, France, proved themselves once again to be utterly incapable of finding a solution to the escalating global financial crisis; the euro experiment has obviously failed; and now, not only Greece, but also Italy, have been placed under a protectorate, thereby reducing the idea of Europe ad absurdum. Meanwhile there has been a gigantic military buildup in the Middle East and the Persian Gulf region. This is the highest-level alert: A military strike against Iran, now fully in preparation, would inevitably lead to a Third World War, in which the use of nuclear weapons would destroy human civilization for a hundred years or more.

The financial oligarchy of the British Empire—i.e., the monetarist system of globalization—is apparently determined to respond to the impending collapse of the trans-Atlantic banking system with a war against Iran and Syria. The perverse logic behind such an undertaking is the assumption that, for the Empire, it were better to maintain control over a destroyed world after a war, than to watch as the Atlantic region collapses, while the large Asian nations, with their high growth rates, develop and assert themselves, becoming the world's leading economic powers.

Iran in the Crosshairs

The disproportionately high concentration of American Armed Forces in the Gulf, the Indian Ocean, and the eastern Mediterranean; the deployment of British naval forces in the region "to support a U.S.-led attack," as the British newspaper the Guardian reported; and the leaking of the intention of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak to carry out a military strike against Iran, can only lead to one conclusion: It is not about the alleged production of nuclear weapons by Iran—an intention that has been denied once again in the official assessment of the U.S. National Intelligence Council—but about a buildup for the potential Third World War. Otherwise, Iran has the right to the peaceful use of nuclear energy, and notable Israeli military experts have in the past repeatedly stressed that even Iranian nuclear weapons—which, as already mentioned, neither exist now, nor will they exist in the near future—pose no existential threat to Israel, in the face of Israel's sizable nuclear arsenal.

After recent hectic consultations among the United States, Great Britain, and Israel—Tony Blair was in the U.S. meeting with President Obama, Defense Minister Barak was in London, the British chief of staff was in Israel—an open revolt broke out in Israel against Netanyahu's war plan. The Israeli press reported that the current head of the Israeli armed forces, as well as the heads of the Mossad, the Shin Bet, and military intelligence, the former heads of these services, as well as Tzipi Livni, the leader of the Kadima party, all have vehemently condemned the planned war on Iran, arguing that Iran poses no existential threat to Israel, but, as former Mossad chief Efraim Halevy said, such a war would destroy the entire region for a hundred years.

And not only that. The Iranian government has already responded that an attack on Iran—which is, according to well-informed sources, not only about the nuclear plants, but also about the infrastructure of the Revolutionary Guards and other assets of the political leadership—would have "apocalyptic consequences." Leading experts on the Middle East agree that a strike against Iran would immediately lead to a Third World War. Retaliatory strikes on American, British, and Israeli positions in the region, such as the roughly 100,000 U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan, the 30,000 U.S. soldiers in Iraq, and the 27,000 U.S. troops in the Gulf states, as well as NATO, British, and American bases, would drive the escalation.

A new war between Israel and Lebanon would result. Given the presence of three nuclear-powered U.S. aircraft carriers in the Persian Gulf and the Eastern Mediterranean; a substantial number of accompanying frigates and destroyers with the latest missile-defense systems; the fact that Israel has just tested a Jericho missile that is capable of transporting nuclear warheads, and whose range includes the territory of Iran; plus Israeli Air Force maneuvers in Sardinia, Italy (!), which included the exercise of F-16 fighter planes for use against distant targets and mid-air refueling, it is preprogrammed that nuclear weapons will be used as soon as this war begins. Russian official statements have already made it clear that any military actions against Syria are also unacceptable. The fuse is burning to the Third World War.

During the G20 summit in Cannes, President Obama used the occasion of the IAEA's anticipated Nov. 7 report on the state of Iran's nuclear program, to point out the alleged Iranian threat, which the U.S. National Intelligence Council, the top authority over all the U.S. intelligence agencies, stressed in its official assessment does not exist. It is to be feared, therefore, that agreements in this direction were reached on the sidelines of the summit by the same coalition partners that were already responsible for the war against Libya and Qaddafi's murder.

It is intolerable that the European leaders have not distanced themselves from the Anglo-American-Israeli war preparations. Equally significant is that the German media have not reported a single word in their coverage of the summit, on the simultaneous preparations for war that are threatening world peace.

As informed sources say, the main reason that Qaddafi was not brought before a court, but rather was murdered, was not the fear of statements he might make about the world leaders who, until recently, had courted him, but rather that a trial would have been too slow, and the drive for war against Syria and Iran would have been blocked.

Incompetence at the G20 Summit

The outcome of the G20 summit demonstrated, moreover, how absolutely incompetent this combination of heads of state has proven to be once again, at finding a solution to the systemic crisis of the global financial system. Vague formulations about "obligations," planned "structural reforms," and the strengthening of the IMF's monitoring mechanisms, promises of better regulation of the derivatives market and the shadow banks, demonstrate only that the G20 has absolutely no intention of doing anything fundamental to change the hopelessly bankrupt system, which is based on high-risk speculation. The European Central Bank's quarter-percent interest-rate cut, under its new chief Mario Draghi, and the Fed's discussion of a "quantitative easing 3," show that they want to maintain the hyperinflationary policy in the trans-Atlantic region.

Instead of admitting that the entire concept of the euro was doomed to fail from the start, the drama around Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou played out—whether there would be a referendum or not—a farce in which the Greek people are the ones who suffer. The true character of the EU oligarchic dictatorship was revealed by the deployment of a recent EU Commission visit to Rome, to degrade Italy, too, to the status of a protectorate. When the protagonists of this dictatorship target the existential interests of oppressed peoples, the idea of a supranational Europe is obviously ruined for everyone. And the lie that this kind of Europe serves unity and peace has proven to be just that, a lie, if the Greeks and Italians start to hate the Germans, and the ugliest chapters in European history are brought into the current discussion.

Change the System

To prevent a plunge into the Third World War and a dark age for the next hundred years, we need a complete policy change. So-called "preventive wars" are wars of aggression; those promoting them must be brought before a Nuremberg Tribunal. We need a real anti-war movement, which makes it clear that the population does not support the war plans against Syria, Iran, and ultimately, Russia and China.

But the existential threat to human civilization can only then be overcome if the root cause of the war dynamic is corrected: the systemic breakdown crisis of the global financial system. We will only escape this threat when the casino economy is ended, the system that rewards the speculators and passes on the losses to the population, making more and richer billionaires and millionaires, while the very existence of more and more billions of people is threatened.

This means the immediate introduction of a global two-tier banking system in the tradition of Franklin D. Roosevelt's Glass-Steagall standard, as the first, essential step. Then we need a credit system that will provide credit lines for a comprehensive economic development program for Greece, Southern Italy, Spain, and Portugal, as well as Africa, and all developing countries.

This current threat could destroy us. But we can also use it to turn this crisis into an opportunity, and finally create conditions on this planet that will allow every individual to have the chance for a decent life.

This statement was issued in Germany as a leaflet and has been translated from German.

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