AFTER THE LIBERATION OF ALEPPO
Germany Must Shape the G20 Agenda
with a Marshall Plan
by Helga Zepp-LaRouche
[Print version of this article]
Dec. 17—President Obama, in the last press conference of his term in office, accused Russia and Russian President Putin personally of having manipulated the American presidential election through cyber-attacks, and announced that there would be reprisals—some explicit and open, and others so that Russia would recognize the author. This announcement of covert operations should cause alarm worldwide—what kind of operation does he mean? Drone strikes, “collateral damage” of all sorts? Obama apparently wants to use his remaining time in the White House for a confrontation with Russia, a confrontation whose end is signaled by Trump’s cabinet appointments. Clearly the neocons—in whose camp Obama belongs, given his continuation of the policies of Bush and Cheney—do not accept their loss of power.
This is all the more outrageous as numerous representatives of the American intelligence community, as well as cyber-experts, have vehemently countered the allegation of President Obama and CIA Director John Brennan, that Putin personally oversaw cyber-attacks that led to the election of Trump. In a memorandum released December 12, the Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS)—among whom are former U.S. Senator Mike Gravel and former CIA agent Ray McGovern—stressed that these allegations have “no basis in fact.” They state they have gone through the various claims about hacking and could say unambiguously, on the basis of their experience as experts in cyber-security, that what happened involved “leaks”—that is, the disclosure of information by an insider, as in Edward Snowden’s case, for example—and not “hacks,” the penetration of an operating system or cyber-security system from a remote location.
If it had been a hack, they said, the NSA, due to its global surveillance capability, would have known long ago the precise location of the sender and receiver. It is unthinkable that the NSA would not be able to identify anyone—whether Russian or not—who tried to interfere in the U.S. election by hacking. Even the notorious John Bolton, himself a leading neocon, speaks of a “false flag” operation, and suspects that the American intelligence services hacked the Democratic Party’s computers themselves, in order to be able to lay the event at Russia’s doorstep.
In fact, a number of Trump’s nominees for cabinet posts are people who know exactly where the bodies are buried when it comes to Obama’s many activities that could one day become the subject of legal investigations. And so Obama’s last stand is obviously also a gigantic maneuver to deflect from potential prosecution.
Otherwise, anyone who followed what was billed as Obama’s last press conference saw someone who had absolutely nothing to say apart from unfounded allegations and “post-truth” assertions about the wonderful situation of the American economy. No vision. No perspective.
Germany Falls into Line
What then does it mean, in this campaign alleging Russian hacking, when Bruno Kahl, the new president of the German Federal Intelligence Service, the Nachrichtendienst, takes the same line as CIA Director John Brennan in declaring that there are “indications” of a trail leading to Moscow—thus obviously defending the neocons’ line instead of the truth? What does it mean when the CDU/CSU demands a “hard line” against Moscow in connection with the alleged cyber-attacks?
It doesn’t bode well. The notoriously pro-British Anne Applebaum, the Washington Post columnist, is “100% sure” that the Russian government will try to steal victory from Merkel in the 2017 German elections, “exactly as it did with its intervention against Hillary Clinton.”
It has become clear since German Defense Minister von der Leyen expressed her “deep shock” over Trump’s election, that many of the proponents of the failed paradigm of neoliberal globalization are not part of the geopolitical campaign against Russia and China because they get orders from Wall Street and the City of London, as many had assumed, but because geopolitics is a fundamental axiom of their identity.
The Syrian government had to resort to a military solution, with the support of Russia and Iran, to free Aleppo and other parts of Syria from ISIS, al-Nusra, and other terrorist groups, because Obama’s continued arming of such groups ruled out any other possibility. Anyone who speaks of the “fall” of Aleppo, and not its liberation, is apparently siding with ISIS, the group responsible not only for countless deaths in the Middle East, but also for the terrorist attacks in France and Germany.
Of course, the tragedy of war is that, in its course horrors occur—especially when it rages on for many years and is a proxy war instigated from the outside—horrors that produce a never-ending chain of horrors. It is therefore all the more urgent now that all neighbors of the Middle East—Russia, China, India, Iran, Egypt, but also Germany, France, and Italy—put large-scale reconstruction of the entire Middle East on the agenda. Donald Trump’s designated National Security Advisor, Gen. Michael Flynn (ret.), has spoken in favor of a Marshall Plan for the Middle East, but it can only succeed if all the major powers cooperate and provide real prospects for the future for the people of this devastated region.
The concrete approach to be taken has long since been proposed by the Schiller Institute in its Phoenix Program for the Reconstruction of Aleppo and the Extension of the New Silk Road to Southwest Asia.
It is obviously just as urgent and necessary to implement a comprehensive industrialization and development program for Africa. A first baby step in the right direction was just taken by German Development Minister Gerd Müller, who seeks to motivate German businesses to invest more in Africa. That is progress, at least compared to the funding projects of the NGOs, whose Sunday sermons on democracy and human rights have brought next to nothing. China, India, and Japan are already active in Africa with significant investments in infrastructure and industrial zones, while Africans speak openly among themselves of how the Europeans will soon be irrelevant on the continent unless their indifference toward Africa changes very quickly.
What Germany Could Do
Chancellor Merkel announced in a video message that Germany will make African development a major theme of the G20 Summit next July in Hamburg, which Germany will chair. Preparations for this summit, and then the summit itself, could become a turning point for the reconstruction of the Middle East and the industrialization of Africa, but only if the German government adheres to the high standard set by China at the last G20 summit in Hangzhou, where President Xi Jinping pledged that China is committed to industrializing Africa.
If, however, Merkel intends to approach the development of Africa from the mindset of “the great transformation and decarbonization of the world economy,” laid out by Joachim “John” Schellnhuber, CBE, and Dirk Messner—in a Dec. 13 Berlin press conference, in anticipation of Germany assuming the 2017 presidency of the G20—then Germany will be discredited, the Asian countries will expand their influence in Africa, and Europe will marginalize itself. The worldwide revolution underway is directed against exactly that thinly disguised neocolonial policy, of which Schellnhuber is exemplary. Nor will it do any good for Messner to dream up a “new, modern narrative” for this policy.
But Germany could meet the challenges of the year 2017 in a very different way, namely, by taking up China’s offer for win-win cooperation in building the New Silk Road. More than 100 nations and institutions are already participating in this, the greatest infrastructure program in history. The New Silk Road Becomes the World Land-Bridge, published by EIR and the Schiller Institute, provides a comprehensive program that includes the key projects required for overcoming underdevelopment in Africa, such as, for example, the Transaqua project to replenish Lake Chad.
Germany could decide to cooperate in realizing these projects, and become a force for the good in creating a new paradigm of cooperation for the common aims of mankind.