This transcript appears in the September 21, 2018 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.
The End of Colonialism: A New Shared Future for Humanity
HELGA ZEPP-LAROUCHE’S KEYNOTE
The End of Colonialism:
A New Shared Future for Humanity
This is the edited transcript of Helga Zepp-LaRouche’s keynote speech to the Schiller Institute’s conference in New York, September 13, 2018.
Thank you. Ladies and gentlemen, dear friends of the Schiller Institute: We need to be conscious of the historical moment in which we find ourselves. I don’t think I’m exaggerating when I say that from the standpoint of what Friedrich Schiller would call Universal History, we have arrived at what he calls in his dramas, a punctum saliens. What he means by that is that the development of the entirety of universal history in the drama comes to a point where all the options up to that point are exhausted. It’s a dramatic moment where everything depends entirely on the moral character of the main actor or the main figure on stage, if the drama will be a tragedy or if it has the potential to lead to a better outcome.
From the standpoint of universal history, if you take the entire, many millions of years, but especially the last 10,000 to 20,000 years, the last 100 years, I think we are reaching such a point in history, where, as my husband Lyndon LaRouche has said many times, the outcome of this historical period is entirely due to the moral character of the people. The question is posed: Does mankind have the moral fitness to survive or not?
Certain leading forces are now in a position to implement solutions, because the solutions to the crisis exist. But will the people of America, the people of Europe, the people of other continents support these leaders to implement, do so?
Panorama of Current History
Let me give you a panoramic view. This will be different than what you would get from the mainstream media in the United States or Western Europe, for that matter. We now have an unprecedented coincidence of existential crises. You have, as Dennis just mentioned, the immediate danger of an escalation of crisis and confrontation with Russia. There have been warnings in the last weeks, put out by the Russian government, that they have evidence that a third false-flag chemical attack is being prepared in Syria.
They have film footage of the White Helmets and other terrorists bringing poison gas—sarin and other chemical weapons—and crews of the White Helmets are in place ready to film such a massacre. American TV crews have moved into the region of Idlib. This is all unfolding as the Syrians—with support of the Russian air force—are determined to take out the last concentration of terrorists in Syria, the successors of al-Qaeda, al-Nusra, and ISIS, all gathered in Idlib. The Syrian government is making use of its sovereign right to reconquer that last province of Syria, and the Russians are helping with the air support.
So, the idea is basically to have this false-flag chemical attack, have film crews film it, and then broadcast it around the world. This operation is supported by a British mercenary organization called Olive; they are orchestrating this operation, sitting with 5,000 mercenaries in Abu Dhabi. Various forces in the United States, the British government, and the French have already declared that they are ready to act with a military strike the moment such so-called proof of a chemical attack “by the Assad government” is presented.
The German Defense Ministry has already developed contingency plans for German participation, and this time it won’t be just air reconnaissance, but the use of Tornadoes to bomb military installations. And the research service of the German Parliament has just put out an expert opinion saying this is a complete violation of international law, because there is no UN Security Council decision, and it’s a complete violation of the German Grundgesetz [Constitution], which forbids a war of aggression—in the light of German history, a very noteworthy clause. So, if Germany were to engage militarily by bombing Syria, it would be the first time since the Second World War that Germany would take the risk of a direct military confrontation with Russia.
President Trump is under permanent bombardment by people who are trying to carry out a coup against him—to impeach him and get him out of office. Should they succeed in luring him into authorizing a full-fledged attack by the U.S. military, this conflict has the potential to go out of control. What happens if these U.S.-British-French—potentially German—military strikes hit some Russian targets in Syria? Would the Russians be content and not react? Well, right now there is a huge flotilla of the Russian Navy in the eastern Mediterranean. In addition to 36 Russian naval vessels, the British and U.S. navies are also engaged in exercises in the area. Instead of denouncing the British accusations against Syria—and against Russia in the Skripal affair—U.S. officials have shown their willingness to participate in those British accusations.
It is important to see the Skripal affair in this context. The British have not presented one iota of evidence that Russia was involved in the attempt on the life of Sergei Skripal and his daughter, or the other two individuals later on. The British and German governments just said they have full confidence in the British assessment that indeed it was two [Russian] GRU military intelligence agents; but they gave no evidence.
You have to look at the other pre-war scenario which is being orchestrated. I know I’m probably stepping on some people’s toes when I say this, but Senator John McCain’s funeral was celebrated and orchestrated as a Hollywood-style spectacular staged to show McCain as America’s greatest hero and patriot and Trump not fit for the White House—at least according to the media. International audiences know McCain very well, because of his yearly appearances at the Munich Security Conference, where he behaved as one of the worst warmongers in his tirades against Russia, against China, and against other so-called “enemies.”
Added to that is the latest Bob Woodward book portraying President Trump as unfit for the White House and totally incapable, which is providing the arguments for the Democrats to go for using the 25th Amendment against him. Then you have the “Anonymous” op-ed in the New York Times, saying there are moles in the administration who are trying to undo all the dangerous things Trump is trying to do. Even Obama had to come out and say, this mole has no democratic legitimacy, because whoever he or she is, that person was not elected and has no right to determine policy for the United States. On the other hand, some voices say it was persons associated with the New York Times who wrote the op-ed, which is, I think, the more likely assessment.
In the context of all these attacks on Trump, Obama came back fully onstage in Chicago, saying, “Is it so difficult to denounce the Nazis?” referring to Trump not condemning the Charlottesville, Virginia incident of a year ago, totally leaving out of the picture that it was Obama’s Administration that helped the Nazi coup in Kiev to bring the Nazis back into power in Ukraine. It was on the same day that the Speaker of the House of the Rada [the Ukrainian parliament], demanded direct democracy in Ukraine “in the tradition of Adolf Hitler.” So much for Obama’s attack on Nazis.
What you have right now—and when you come from the outside as I do, you see it more clearly—is the mainstream media in the United States gearing up a pre-war hysteria; preparing the population to believe that Vladimir Putin is a demon; that Xi Jinping is an autocratic dictator; and that Trump is not fit for office. The question you must ask yourself is, where is this supposed to lead? Are they putting all of this out just for fun and then they will just stop? Or is there some intention behind it?
Looking at the military situation in Syria, since President Putin intervened militarily in Syria in 2015, Syria and Russia have now gained complete control of the airspace in Syria. For the remaining terrorists in Idlib, either they capitulate and give themselves up, or they will be killed. Therefore, the situation is on a complete hair-trigger. Note that Trump has so far not initiated any war. He promised during the election campaign that he would try to improve relations with Russia, and he has gone out of his way to develop a personal friendship with President Xi Jinping—unlike the Bush and Obama Administrations, which started several wars.
It is also very clear that right now we are in a countdown, where there is not one iota of doubt that the faction of the British Empire that includes the British government, the Democrats, and the neo-cons in the Republican Party, are trying everything to prevent Trump from fulfilling his campaign promises. Especially after the historic summit in Helsinki, where Trump and Putin met—about which Trump even recently said that this was one of the best meetings he has ever had—all hell broke loose. It is absolutely clear that this faction does not want Trump to move on this policy.
All of these things I described—the Syria attack plan, the Skripal orchestration, the Woodward book, the New York Times op-ed—these are all atmospherics to try to get Trump out of office one way or the other.
So, we are really back at a situation where this faction is risking preventive nuclear war to occur. It’s what Truman did to Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945, for which there was no military reason because the Japanese had already capitulated. Bombing of these two cities was just to establish the reign of nuclear terror for control of the postwar period. The difference between 1945 and 2018, is that the nuclear arsenals of the United States and Russia are big and powerful enough to annihilate the human species several times over.
On March 1 of this year, President Putin announced on that Russia had developed new weapons systems based on new physical principles. For example, a highly maneuverable Mach-20 hypersonic missile that is not ballistic; nuclear-powered cruise missiles; a nuclear-powered submarine which can go high speed. He also announced—and this has been verified by various military experts—that these new weapons of Russia’s will undo the entire anti-ballistic missile system the United States has been building in the last year; about which Russia has said many times that they will not and cannot allow Phase III and IV to be built because it would completely destroy the strategic balance to the disadvantage of Russia. So, Russia has moved against that by developing these new weapons systems.
The Vostok-2018 military exercises, which started on Tuesday, in the Far East of Russia, is the largest military exercise since 1981, since the Soviet Union. It involves 300,000 Russian troops, including 6,000 airborne troops; over 1,000 warplanes, helicopters, drones, 36,000 pieces of armor, 80 combat and support ships. It involves the North Sea Fleet in the Arctic. The exercise is meant to test the capability of Russia’s military to move rapidly over long distances and coordinate between its different branches. New here, apart from the size of it, is that for the first time 3,200 Chinese troops, 900 Chinese combat vehicles, and 30 aircraft are involved, in this way demonstrating a full-fledged military alliance between China and Russia. Also participating are Mongolian troops.
It is clear that Russia and China are coordinating their weapons systems and their command structures. It is a very clear signal to the war party in the West as to what they will have to deal with, if they risk the provocation.
The German political figure, Willy Wimmer who was the Deputy Defense Secretary in Helmut’s Kohl government and is still a member of the Christian Democratic Union party, in the last ten days issued several warnings that the only person standing between us and the next war, which would annihilate all of mankind, is Donald Trump. You may think whatever you want about Trump, but I think on that point, Wimmer is absolutely right. Because if the Democrats succeed in impeaching Trump following the midterm elections, I think we would very clearly see a convergence of the war party in that direction. We now have less than two months until November 6 midterm elections in the United States.
The situation in the United States is already extremely polarized. When you talk to people, they are either for Trump or against Trump, and you can’t have a rational discussion as to why. If you ask an anti-Trump person “Why are you anti-Trump?” “He’s a dictator.” If you say, “But he wants to have peace with Russia.” “Yeah, that’s because he likes dictators”—namely Putin. All rationality has disappeared. The hysteria has reached a point of historic escalation. What did people say after the breakthrough of the Singapore meeting in which Trump very successfully put the question of solving the North Korea crisis on the track of a solution? “Trump likes dictators, and that’s why he’s doing these things with Kim Jong-un.”
New Documents: NATO Was Not to Go East
What you have in the United States right now is a complete group-think; or rather, a group non-think. Because people are not thinking about the long-term universal history, but they are completely brainwashed by the media narratives. If you ask people, “Why is Putin a dictator? After all, he was three times democratically elected; he has 80% of his population backing him up. So, why is he a dictator?” You hear, “He annexed Crimea.” Well, that is not exactly what happened. Just recently, declassified documents from the National Security Archives at the George Washington University were published, showing very clearly that the Soviet Union, and then Russia, in the period of 1989, 1990, 1991, was given absolute assurances that there was no intention to expand NATO eastward.
These documents make very clear, however, that there was a conscious effort to mislead the Soviet Union and Russia about the intention of NATO to do exactly that. Gorbachev at that point received assurances that NATO would not expand past East Germany. Therefore, Gorbachev agreed to the German unification. There were written memorandums to this effect, and there is a speech by former NATO General Secretary Manfred Wörner from the May 17, 1990 in Brussels, where he said, “It is absolutely the fact that we will not move the NATO army outside of German territory.” This is giving the Soviet Union absolute security guarantees so that they can agree to the German unification.
There are quotes and documents that then Secretary of State [James] Baker wrote to Gorbachev on the February 9, 1990, and this is a famous quote: “NATO will not expand one inch eastward.” That is why the Soviet Union dissolved, peacefully, without using tanks; they agreed to German unification. And that is why today, the Russians are extremely upset about the treason of the Germans; because they agreed peacefully to the German unification, and now the Germans are about to participate in such provocations against Russia, including military maneuvers where the Bundeswehr is now at the Russian border in the Baltic countries—something which anyone having a sense of what happened in the Second World War between Germany and Russia, should never tolerate happening again.
So, instead of not moving one inch eastward, you have a long history which started with little steps: of regime change, of color revolution, changing the governments of Eastern Europe. And then finally, the speech of Tony Blair in 1999 in Chicago, in which he declared officially the end of the Peace of Westphalia, replacing the respect for the UN Charter for sovereignty, with so-called “humanitarian interventions,” followed by the “right to protect”—the idea that any country can intervene in any other around the world, you just have to orchestrate the necessary lies to justify such action, as it happened in the case of Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, and Yemen, which is a similar case
This policy has cost millions of people’s lives in the war-affected countries. President Trump has said many times that these wars have cost $7 trillion and that’s why he wants to end them. They should not continue. The Washington Post nitpicked: “No, no, it was only $4 trillion or $6 trillion but not $7.”
This is what is really at stake. Trump says he wants to establish an order of peace with Russia and China. The British forces are trying to prevent him. That’s why the forces of the British Empire are out to get him. Because once Trump succeeds in establishing such relationships with Russia and China, it would end forever the British Empire’s geopolitical manipulation of the world.
New Paradigm of the New Silk Road
OK, so this is one situation. But what most Americans have no idea of, because, how could you? The mainstream media has yet to mention, even once, that there is already a different world emerging, namely the new paradigm of the New Silk Road dynamic.
Since Xi Jinping announced the New Silk Road in Kazakhstan in 2013, five years have passed. During that time the most unbelievable transformation of Latin America, of Asia, of parts of Europe, of Africa, has taken place, where many of the countries—about 80-100, plus a number of large international organizations—are now working together with China in win-win cooperation. In those short five years, China has established major development corridors, connecting China and Europe, within Asia; many cargo trains full of goods are being exchanged; Africa is completely changing. Chinese investments over those five years have totaled $5 trillion.
What has developed is a completely new system of international relations, based on sovereignty, based on the respect for the other social system, noninterference, and more and more countries are joining in. Only last month, the BRICS nations—Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa—joined with the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), and the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU). At the July 25-27 BRICS Summit in Johannesburg, South Africa, saw the formation of something called the “Global South” which is practically the entirety of what used to be called the “Third World.” It’s the G77, it’s Mercosur, it’s the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, it’s the African Union, and many regional organizations, all agreeing that they will build a new system of international relations.
At that summit, what Xi Jinping said is beautiful: “Science and technology, as the primary production forces, have provided inexhaustible power driving progress of human civilization.” And he said that because Africa has the most developing countries, the African continent has the largest development potential of anybody. At the same summit, Vladimir Putin said that Russia will help to lift Africa up by bringing power to the 600 million people who still have no access to electricity, by not only providing gas and oil, but by helping the African countries to build up nuclear power for all of them.
The BRICS conference in South Africa last month and then this historic summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) at the beginning of September in Beijing—with 53 heads of state and government participating, mostly presidents, the rest being five prime ministers—I really think established the official end of colonialism: It has given the African nations a great sense of empowerment, because China is offering them not only infrastructure investment, science and technological transfer, but also a strategy of leapfrogging, whereby African countries and other developing countries can have access to the most advanced science and technology, so as not to need to repeat all the levels of development of the West.
What Xi Jinping said at this conference is that China and Africa will “walk together towards prosperity. We will think with one mind, and work with one heart.” China pledged $60 billion for projects in Africa over the next three years. And he also declared this is open to all nations—to the United States, to the Europeans, to Japan, to anybody who wants to participate.
China is synergizing the Belt and Road Initiative, already a global network of infrastructure, realizing what the Schiller Institute put out in its two reports, The New Silk Road Becomes the World Land-Bridge, volumes one and two, and the UN’s Agenda 2030, which is the idea that poverty will be eradicated on the entire planet. China has taken a leading role in pushing that agenda forward, and China has the plan to eliminate poverty in China, altogether, by 2020. Now, that’s less than two years from now, and they are on a very good track to accomplish exactly that.
Xi Jinping went personally to the countryside, to the villages, had people look at each individual, each family in poverty, to determine exactly what was needed to improve their condition. China is integrating the BRI with the African Union’s Agenda 2063, a very, very beautiful and ambitious program which announced in 2013 that Africa will be fully modernized by 2063, a 50-year perspective to transform the African continent completely.
Xi Jinping said very clearly, the aim of all of this is to make the world more balanced and a better place for everyone to live in.
Let’s listen to what the Africans themselves are saying. South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa said that China and Africa are entering a new golden age, a fantastic age of deep cooperation, based on equality, with deep respect for each other. He said the accusation of neocolonialism, which is being made against China, is propagated by people who envy us and who are jealous of our relationship. I think that that is absolutely true.
In his speech to the FOCAC summit in Beijing, Ramaphosa said: “Africa is independent now and is free to choose its partners. And China has been supportive and engaged in partnership where we are trying now to promote and assist each other.”
So this is a historic break: 500 years of colonialism, 50, 70 years of IMF conditionalities suppressing Africa’s development, is over, and the artificial keeping of Africa backward through the doctrines of physical economic stagnation, zero growth, and British-style free trade—which was imposed by the colonial powers on Africa—is over.
China is using today what President Franklin D. Roosevelt called, in his 1941 encounters with Britain’s Prime Minister Churchill, “20th-century methods” meaning industrialization, increasing the productivity of labor power, increasing longevity, letting everyone in on the progress of science and technology, health, infrastructure and so forth; not “18th-century methods,” meaning looting, exploitation, slave trade, exploiting raw materials. There is a new saying, that “Africa is becoming the new China, but the new China with African characteristics.” China entered into a Memorandum of Understanding with 37 countries at this FOCAC meeting. This is a complete explosion of development.
One week later, the Eastern Economic Forum convened in Vladivostok, Russia, representing a similar gigantic, strategic realignment in the direction of development, with 6,000 participants from 60 nations: 3,000 Russians, 1,000 Chinese, many people from South Korea, North Korea, Japan. Participants discussed making Russia’s Siberia and Far East the new frontier of the East. Remember that this is one of the largest regions of untapped resources of the world, because in the Far East of Russia, there are all the Elements of the Mendeleyev Table in large quantities. So, if you have joint investment from North and South Korea, from Japan, from Russia and from other nations to develop this region—in which the United States could easily participate via the Bering Strait, and connect to the trans-Eurasian network—it brings a lot of prosperity to many people on the planet for decades to come.
Very exciting at this summit, was the announcement by President Putin and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan that there will be a peace treaty between their two countries by the end of the year, finally ending the de facto state of not-war, but no peace treaty, between the two countries. I’m planning very much to pick up on that, demanding a peace treaty be concluded between the United States and Germany—which I think is also very, very urgent.
So what I want you to grasp,— that you not think that the reality is what you see here inside the United States. You are living in a fishbowl, a completely artificial environment, where you have no chance to know about the real issues going on in the world and determining the future of mankind, if you rely on the mass media. If you don’t know what you’re looking for, even the Internet doesn’t help you, because the Internet floods you with “information,” all these apps and messages and so forth, but you have to know what you are looking for. If you take my remarks here as a guideline, you will be able to find the proof.
There is a new system, a completely new paradigm of relations among nations developing, and as Prime Minister Abe at the Vladivostok meeting said, we have to get rid of everything of the postwar period, we need a completely new beginning.
Everything I am saying to you is contradicted by the mainstream media and the think tanks that for about four years have ignored all of these fantastic developments. And all of a sudden, however, they woke up and realized that this is all happening. So, they started an unprecedented slander campaign against the New Silk Road, saying this is luring the third world countries into a debt trap. Now, nothing could be less true: China is forgiving many of the loans it has made, while it is the Western countries that have caused a debt trap for many of the developing countries. Another of their arguments is, “China is proceeding with neocolonialism.” Well, I’m sorry: If China is uplifting living standards, with giving fair conditions of equal treatment and win-win cooperation, this is the opposite of colonialism.
Another argument: “They’re only deploying Chinese labor, there is no transparency. These projects are not profitable, they are creating dependency for the Third World.” Well, I would advise people to read the June 2017 McKinsey report on Chinese economic engagement in Africa, which shows that Chinese investments in Africa are all to the benefit of the receiving countries: they are for the first time giving Africa a development chance; they are deploying 90% African labor; only those positions which the Africans are not trained for are temporarily taken over by the Chinese. In Ethiopia, for example, China is now setting up an academy for people to learn how to run sophisticated, fast railways, giving their knowledge to many millions of other people.
The McKinsey report also states that these projects are not following a big master plan, where the Chinese Communist government controls every investment, but that all of these investments basically follow market rules—and McKinsey is not exactly your Communist propaganda outfit.
At stake here is the image of man. China says, Xi Jinping says, that the African continent has the biggest development potential in all the world, because they need the most development. By the year 2050, Africa will have 2.5 billion people. That means, you will have a lot of young people; Africa will be the youngest continent of all. If the young people of Africa are properly educated, they will be the most prosperous. This is in complete contrast to the image of man, for example, given by the author Stephen Smith, a lecturer at Duke University here in the United States, who wrote an absolutely horrific book which is being quoted everywhere right now in the Western media. The title of this book is EurAfrica: Young Africa Comes to the Old Continent [La Ruée vers l’Europe: La Jeune Afrique en route vers le Vieux Continent].
Referring to the migrant crisis in Europe, Smith writes that Chinese investments in Africa are terrible, and are the reason for the migrant crisis, because they allow Africans to have a certain living standard, so that then they have the means to come to the European continent or drown in the Mediterranean. It’s completely crazy! But this nonsense is being quoted everywhere. And if you look at the language in this book, it is the old Rockefeller mantra: overpopulation, youth surplus, excess youth—all completely cynical and anti-human words! As if human beings were some kind of parasite of which there are too many. Quite incredible!
So on the other hand, China and Africans are emphasizing that what unites them is a deep friendship. Winston Churchill said that such relationships are completely impossible, because between countries, you can’t have friendship, you only have “interests.” With a neo-liberal, neo-con establishment, that is obviously true. But if you reach out and have a people-to-people understanding, if you respect the beautiful culture of the other country, you can develop love! You can develop friendship, because you realize that God has made the world so multiply-beautiful that once you know all of these other cultures, you are enriched. Xi Jinping says the aim of all of this is happiness for all.
The geopolitical faction is used to thinking in terms of geopolitics. It’s either the U.S. interests or the European Union interests against China, against Russia; in Europe, meanwhile, it’s against the United States: They engage in these geopolitical spectacles, to induce you to think that these are the only actions to take, leaving it impossible, they hope, for you to imagine that mankind is capable of creating a completely different system of human relations.
One example of the difference in thinking—and I thought that this was one of the most beautiful occasions to see that difference—was the answer Xi Jinping gave recently in response to a letter from eight senior professors of the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing, in which these professors asked him, “How much significance do you give to the question of the aesthetical education?” Xi Jinping said that aesthetical education in great Classical arts in the training of students has the highest importance, because the goal of this aesthetical education is to create beautiful minds.
In the tradition of Friedrich Schiller, that happens to be one of the absolute aims of the Schiller Institute. We want people to develop beautiful souls! For Schiller, beautiful soul and mind is very much the same.
Now, think about how the youth in American are being treated. The drug epidemic, the suicide rate, the despair, the non-idea of a future, and you could not see more clearly the problem. I think President Trump knows that; he has already said he wants to get rid of this drug epidemic, but the present battles he is involved in have made it very difficult for him to do that.
Look at the changes in the world: Russia and China are now in a strategic alliance. At the Vladivostok summit they are deepening their regional cooperation according to the Volga-Yangtze mechanism. At the same time, Russia, for the first time with China, has conducted very large joint military maneuvers in Russia’s Far East. So, you see the two potentials: It’s very clear Russia and China are building a new world, but they’re also making very clear, they’re not going to be pushed over. They’re not going to start a war, but they also make very clear, they know how to defend themselves.
So, I think people in the West have to make up their minds: Either we in the West—the United States and Europe—join the new paradigm, or we go in the direction of confrontation, which, should it escalate into actual warfighting, in all likelihood would mean the annihilation of civilization. That is really the issue of the midterm elections. It’s not what people think—this or that—it is this, and I fully agree with Willy Wimmer, that what stands between all of us and World War III, is Donald Trump. Should he be driven out of office, one way or another, I would not give two pennies for world peace.
Look at the hysteria being expressed by certain Democrats, who used to be reasonable in the past. They have gone completely mad! I mean, one example for me, is Robert Reich, who when he was Labor Secretary in the Clinton Administration used to say sometimes quite decent things on economics. But in a recent editorial, he wrote that we have to annihilate Trump! This Presidential election should be annihilated from the memory of history, it should never have happened! You don’t talk like that, unless you are possessed and driven, and many of these people have said similar things.
Solution to Imminent World Financial Blowout
There is one other danger: And that is that ten years after the financial crash of 2008, we are again at a point of a potential explosion of the monetary system, but on a much larger scale. William White, the former chief economist of the Bank for International Settlements, who is a quite good economist—we have studied his works for quite some time—just came out saying that since none of the causes of the 2008 crash have been removed, the world could witness a financial blowout at any moment. Jean-Claude Trichet, former president of the European Central Bank (ECB) from 2003-2011, just said the same thing: the danger is of a blowout. Many others are warning that a financial blowout could occur way before the midterm elections in the United States.
Were a financial blowout to happen, the world could end up in chaos, and out of chaos would come war. As a remedy, Trichet is prescribing more of the poison he spread when he was at the ECB, namely, more “structural reforms,” more austerity, more reduction of wages and similar things.
But there actually is a solution. We are now at the point warned about in a video by Mr. LaRouche on July 25, 2007, one week before the secondary mortgage crisis in the United States broke out, where he said the financial system is hopelessly bankrupt and nothing in the world can be done to undo that, unless you completely reform it and go for Glass-Steagall, go for a New Bretton Woods system. He said that everything we see now will be just the different aspects of this bankrupt system coming to the surface—which then happened in 2007 with the mortgage crisis and 2008 and the Lehman Brothers bankruptcy filing, the largest in U.S. history.
Since the central banks did absolutely nothing to remedy that, we have now a situation where corporate debt, indebtedness in general is at an all-time high. When the Federal Reserve tried to increase the interest rate just a little bit, the currencies of the “emerging market” countries started to go down, practically without a bottom; so, you have a minefield which could lead to a complete explosion in the next weeks.
China is well aware of all this. They have for some time demanded a new financial international governance; they have introduced a new law forbidding speculation and actually forbidding Chinese investors from involving their money in international speculative activity. This is one of the various things one has to consider in light of the U.S. trade war against China, the U.S. sanctions against Russia, the secondary sanctions against Europeans who are affected by these sanctions. In many parts of the world already there is talk about replacing the dollar as a world leading currency, and instead conducting trade with national currencies, for example the Turkish lira, the Russian ruble, the Chinese yuan/renminbi.
The problem is, such schemes won’t work without the United States being included in a proposed solution, all these beautiful efforts by other countries to establish different relations may not work, because with chaos reigning in the trans-Atlantic financial system, I do not think the United States would agree to its own demise in the same peaceful way that the Soviet Union eventually did when it disintegrated in 1991. Given the dangers under conditions of a general breakdown chaos, I think the potential is great for the United States to go into a civil war. Many European analysts have warned about such a possibility recently, given the incredible degree of weaponry in the country, automatic rifles and so forth. But at the same time, the United States could very well engage in a large war on a global scale.
This is why the only way out—and this has been said by my husband many years ago—is to have a New Bretton Woods, to go back to where Nixon went in the wrong way on Aug. 15, 1971, when he decoupled the dollar from gold and dissolved the fixed exchange rate system, which was really the beginning of this absolutely excessive deregulation of the markets, leading to the present casino economy. We must go back to that point, go back to a fixed exchange rate system, but you have to improve it, which is why it has to be called a “New” Bretton Woods.
While Franklin D. Roosevelt had one intention, as I mentioned earlier, namely, to use “20th-century methods” to end colonialism in the developing countries, under Harry Truman, the Bretton Woods system became very much influenced by Churchill’s views, and this is why, when you talk about New Bretton Woods, many people in Africa and other countries say, “Oh no! We don’t want that, because it put us at so much of a disadvantage!” Which is why we are saying a New Bretton Woods: Because you need to have a kind of return to a system where it is not the maximum profit of the speculators, but the common good of the people which must be the purpose of economy.
My husband has said many times—and if you think about it, it makes absolute sense—that in order to get rid of the power which rules the West right now, that is, the City of London and its Wall Street satrapy, which are really also behind all the war provocations and behind many other evil things, the only way to overpower them is with a Four Power agreement. You need a combination of the United States, China, Russia and India, possibly with Japan, with an open invitation to all other nations. But you need that initiating core combination which is powerful enough to replace the system of the British Empire with an international credit system, based on the American system of economy of Alexander Hamilton.
This combination must start with a banking separation by implementing a global Glass-Steagall; then create a national bank in each country, thus returning to the sovereign states and governments the power of credit generation; have the newly established national banks issue massive amounts of credit for physical economic construction; and set up a global system of governance based on a commitment to cooperation among sovereign nations.
A New Bretton Woods system, as intended by FDR, would develop the developing countries, but not with “20th-century methods” but with 21st-century methods by allowing these countries to leapfrog to a level of complete development, by increasing their productivity, living standards, longevity and allow them to participate in the fruits of science and technology on the highest level.
U.S. Potholes and Tolls, China’s High-Speed Rail
Some may say, “This is utopian, this cannot happen.” But that’s not true! The framework for this already exists, in the form of the Belt and Road Initiative becoming the World Land-Bridge. There already exists a global cooperation network connecting continents through corridors, tunnels, bridges, by air, by land, by sea. It all began when China embarked on building the infrastructure that the world suffers so much from a lack of. There is a tremendous lack of infrastructure, not only in the developing countries, but also in the West. Having come this morning from New Jersey to New York, I can emphatically say “especially in the United States!” I don’t know, frankly, how you do this, you know. [laughter]
How can you travel on these roads, which have such potholes—you know, if you have a back problem, every two meters you experience a shock to your bones; but also, people are rageful, it’s dangerous. Two hours in the morning, two hours in the evening, in some cases even more. It’s irrational to the hilt! It’s completely crazy! I don’t understand why you don’t make a riot about it, saying: “We don’t want this! This is cheating us of our lives!”
Compare your highways and railways with the fast train system in China. If ever you have any tourist plans, go to China, travel on their fast train system. They go by now at 320-330 kph, about 200 mph. They’re smooth, they fly through the landscape. They’re quiet; they don’t shake, because they’re built very well. China’s building a fast train between all major cities in China. The one from Shanghai to Beijing takes a little bit less than five hours. To Nanjing, four hours.
They’re now taking an area the size of New York and New Jersey—namely the triangle between Beijing, Tientsin, and Hebei province—and they’re revamping the whole thing, putting in fast trains; for the inner-city transport, slow maglev trains which go only 150 kph (93 mph), which can stop very quickly. The beautiful thing about the maglev, is that they have an extremely fast acceleration, so it takes only 10 seconds to attain full speed, as you’re pushed into your seatback. The technology is such that it takes off and you’re right there, and you can stop again. So, for inner-city traffic this is absolutely perfect.
This is what you need in the United States, a transport system connecting Philadelphia, Boston, New York, Chicago, Detroit, the West Coast, Texas, through a network of fast train systems. Your road system is outmoded! America has 250 km of fast train rail! Somewhere between New York and Boston, there is, I think, a little strip of 200 km where you can go at 250 kph, but that’s all. So, you have none, nothing! You should get some high-speed rail built! [applause]
Serious, large-scale infrastructure cannot be built by private interests. Private investors need relatively quick return on their money. They tend to go for tolls on highways. Toll booths—to get from New Jersey to Manhattan, by car via the Lincoln Tunnel. If you pay cash, its $15, and then you pay $8 for another stretch. There are now places on the Capital Beltway around Washington, where at certain hours of the day, you pay $40 for a few miles! This is insane! What this means is, obviously, not everybody can afford that, so then many cars go off the highway, take side roads, which become congested, and it’s completely suffocating the real economy. So the toll system is another one of these insane things, because infrastructure as such is not supposed to bring profit, but it’s supposed to be the framework and environment for industry to blossom.
Ditch Trade War for Four Power Agreement
This is where we have to really get a mobilization going, because I think President Trump probably intends the right thing by imposing tariffs on certain categories of industry, like steel, aluminum, and other things. And I think he has a right impulse to undo the mistakes of previous administrations which have outsourced production to cheap labor markets. But the tariffs are not the right thing to do. I try to defend Trump, and I’m probably one of only two people in Germany who even dares to talk about the importance of Trump not losing the election—but I think here, he’s really wrong. Because, if you want to have a Four Power agreement, if you want to have friendship among the United States, Russia, China, India, and other countries, you cannot start a trade war.
Many Chinese I have recently spoken with are extremely upset, saying this is hurting everybody: It’s hurting the U.S. consumers, who have to pay increased prices; it is not leading to the kind of technological innovation in new industries in the United States; and it is just plain punitive—the tariffs are being perceived as punitive against especially high-technology areas, as a means to stop China from reaching its China 2021 goals. This is causing bad blood, and it brings to mind the “Thucydides trap.” Will the United States allow the rise of China, or will a new world war come out of it? And that’s how many people in China look at it.
There is, in my view, a much better way, namely, with the Four Power agreement to set up a New Bretton Woods system, to create a new credit mechanism, and then have Chinese invest in the infrastructure in the United States. China holds about $1 trillion in U.S. Treasury bonds. China’s offer, made by Prime Minister Li Keqiang, has been that China could use these Treasuries to invest in infrastructure in the United States and offer joint ventures in other countries, i.e., increase the size of the cake: And by increasing trade, get rid of the balance that way. Obviously, this is not liked by some people, but it is the rational solution.
Is it possible to get such an agreement? What people also don’t consider, is that the Chinese economic model is very close to the American System of economy. Friedrich List, a collaborator of Mathew and Henry Carey, spent several years in the United States, and he wrote many works about the difference between the American and the British systems of economy. It happens to be that he is, right now, according to a 2011 article in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, and many other reports, the most popular economist theoretician in China. The American journalist and author Chalmers Johnson noted the fact that List has much more influence in Asia, than either Adam Smith or Karl Marx. And the China model can actually be called a “neo-Hamiltonian” or “neo-Listian model with Chinese characteristics.”
Were the President of the United States—who said he likes the American System of economy, and plans to implement Glass-Steagall—to agree to participate, the United States could engage in investment in high-tech exports to the countries of the Belt and Road Initiative. And even if these exports would not always bring the biggest profit, such activity would foster increased rates of technological turnover in the most advanced capital goods sector of production inside the United States, causing a continuous wave of innovation, and that way, increase the overall productivity of the U.S. economy.
As a byproduct of such exports, the U.S. would rapidly reverse the ill effects of outsourcing of production and deindustrialization. And, since the fastest rates of growth are found in space research and exploration, and joint space travel is the joint future mission of humanity, we should concentrate on development of the Moon and Mars, and unite us as humanity in this way.
Look Back From the Future
So, we have to change the way we think. Don’t think from inside the box. If you look at German politics from inside Germany, you’d think you were in an insane asylum. Far too many people will tell you, “This is my position against your position,” and they’ll debate totally meaningless issues. I hate to tell you, but in the United States it looks pretty much the same way.
Think how humanity should look in 100 years from now. Today’s vision of sending astronauts to the Moon and Mars will soon be realized. It’s not a question of “if” but “when.” So, let’s concentrate on questions like, how can we create conditions to live on the ISS, to live in villages on the Moon, and then, eventually, on Mars.
We should think of today as us in the present, from the standpoint of Schiller’s universal history: How would we like to be looked at from the standpoint of our grandchildren and great-grandchildren? Are we that force, that generation which initiated and contributed to the transformation of the world into a new paradigm, which ended colonialism, and which got mankind’s history into the idea of the one humanity?
Coming back to the idea of the punctum saliens in history, that jumping point, that point of decision where all the moral potential is called forth, to not end up in a tragedy, but to create a new, more beautiful period of human civilization, this is presently our situation. So, with this purpose in our hearts and minds, let us work from the standpoint of a New Silk Road Spirit, to become truly human, and let that, in the sense of Percy Shelley, become the true spirit of the age.