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This transcript appears in the August 19, 2022 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.

[Print version of this transcript]


We Cannot Accept Limits to Free Speech

This is the edited transcript of the Schiller Institute’s August 11, 2022 dialogue with Helga Zepp-LaRouche. A video of the webcast is available here.

Harley Schlanger: Hello, I’m Harley Schlanger, welcome to our weekly dialogue with Helga Zepp-LaRouche, founder and chairwoman of the Schiller Institute. Today is Thursday, Aug. 11, 2022.

It’s been several weeks since our last dialogue, and there’s an enormous array of events that have been occurring. Let’s start with a really important question, which is: How is it that governments in the Western world are pursuing policies that are so opposite to what the people of their countries need and want? Helga I know you have some thoughts on that. Why don’t we start with that?

Helga Zepp-LaRouche: Yes. I think that that will not remain for long because the policies that are being pushed by the trans-Atlantic establishment are absolutely detrimental to the livelihood and existential interest of their citizens. You can see it from the policy of the trans-Atlantic nations toward Russia, toward China and from their economic policy and energy policy. I think this will explode fairly soon. That’s actually what several people are expecting, that this will be a very hot fall. It is very important that broad deliberation occurs among citizens of these nations about what they want their future to be. And that means we cannot accept limitations on free speech. We cannot accept gag orders saying that you have to have the official narrative, or else you’ll be ostracized in one way or another. That is what is happening right now, and a lot of people have experienced it.

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All German industry will be severely damaged as sanctions imposed on Russia continue and deepen. Here, a BASF chemical plant.

I spoke yesterday with an old acquaintance from Austria. He said that 80% of the Austrian people are absolutely against the sanctions against Russia. Austria has a history of being a neutral country, and its people have fared well for many decades with that status. And it is increasingly perceived by the population that the government is acting on someone else’s orders and are not representative of the population. That puts a big question mark on the government. Is this really a democracy when the government is not doing what the voters want them to do?

Well, you can discuss many aspects of that. What is happening right now in Europe, under pressure mainly from the United States and Great Britain, but also NATO, is economic suicide. If you look at the situation, we already have an explosion of energy prices, food prices. For developing countries, this means mass famine. UN officials have said that the lives of 1.7 billion people are threatened.

The sanctions are hurting, primarily—sure, they hurt Russia to a certain extent—but they’re hurting Germany much, much, much more! The German dependence on Russian gas (under which Germany fared very well and had a lot of economic benefits for decades) means that now that it is being cut off because of the policies of NATO, German industry is being severely hurt! There are many, many firms which are in danger of going bankrupt in the next weeks and months. Now, on top of the anti-Russian campaign, almost like a command coming from the City of London or Wall Street or somewhere, is the demand to “decrease the dependency on China.” This was the title story in Spiegel magazine. Then the economic institute of Munich, the IFO institute, released a big new study which says, in essence, that the lesson has to be learned. The dependence on Russia, and now the dependence on China, has to be decreased.

If you look at the economic entanglement between Europe and China, and Germany and China in particular, the auto sector, machine tools, the chemical industry; on the other side, the dependency on batteries, and many areas—if you now were to do what these people are proposing, to replace Germany’s largest trade partner, China, with a diversion into so-called “like-minded countries,” to have “partnerships of free trade with like-minded countries,” you have to say that this is economically completely ridiculous. It’s suicide. Because what you are left with if you replace Russia with some East European countries, just look at the figures, the number of people these countries have compared to Russia, the wealth of raw materials Russia has, as compared to countries such as Poland or the Czech Republic, or Slovakia, it does not work.

However, if you were to decouple from China, then you are left with what? You are left with: the United States, which cannot replace China; Great Britain, which is going into the worst economic collapse, which is openly discussed in the UK; and a couple of meager countries like Japan, Australia, and that’s about it.

On the other hand, because of the anti-Russia and anti-China policy, there is a whole new development occurring. A new world economic order is emerging, which is reviving the spirit of the Non-Aligned Movement around China and the Belt and Road Initiative. China is ever more strongly allied with Russia, and more than 130 countries are allied with Russia and China. That includes nations associated with the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, notably the BRICS countries, Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa and organizations like the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), and the Eurasian Economic Union.

And most organizations of the so-called Global South are going in the direction of reviving the spirit of Bandung, reviving the Non-Aligned spirit, because they don’t want to be pulled into a geopolitical confrontation between the United States, on the one side, and Russia and China on the other side. This is why they refused to join the sanctions against Russia, and this is why they are again talking about the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence of the Bandung spirit, which is exactly the same thing as the UN Charter.

These countries are moving very quickly to de-dollarize; they are increasing trade in rubles, rupees, renminbi, and other local currencies. They’re building a new currency system, and they are focussing on investment in real development.

If the Western nations are determined to decouple from that, the only growing dynamic in the world, they’re only shooting themselves. They’re completely committing economic hara-kiri. I think the populations of those nations will not go along with it. And I think these establishments better rethink what their attitude is on all of this, because what they’re proposing is simply not workable. They are blinded by geopolitical prejudices, by a Cold War mindset, by a zero-sum game, as compared to those people and nations who want to have win-win cooperation, who really want to have development, and address real problems.

I think the elites or—I don’t think we can call them elites—the establishments of Europe and the United States and Great Britain, are really on the wrong track. The Schiller Institute is proposing solutions. We have shown the way for now 51 years, rooted in my late husband’s recognition that the decision by Nixon to revamp the Bretton Woods system in the direction of a totally monetarist policy, would lead to exactly the kind of collapse we’re now seeing in the world. We have been working on proposals, and we are now proposing the creation of a New Bretton Woods system—a new credit system, a new global security and development architecture—which takes into account the interests of every single country on the planet. And that is what needs to be put on the agenda.

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CC/Nick in exsillo
Cardinal Nicholas of Cusa was first to develop the principle that government is legitimate only with the consent of the governed. Here, a bas relief over his tomb in the Basilica di San Pietro in Vincoli, Rome.

What we have seen in the last period, is unbelievable arrogance on the side of Western governments, where they say, “we control the narrative, anybody who has a different opinion will be suppressed, in one way or another.” That is not democracy and has nothing to do with the so-called values of the West. We need to go back to the works of Nicholas of Cusa, who worked in the 15th century on groundbreaking conceptual questions concerning the sovereignty of the nation-state—in his famous work, Concordantia Catholica, he developed for the first time the principle that government is only legitimate with the consent of the governed. That’s the difference between an oligarchy and a legitimate government. That is the question that will play out in the next period. And I can only invite you, our viewers, to think about that and work with us to correct things before it is too late.

Schlanger: Now, Helga, let me just take the remaining time we have to throw out a couple of aspects of the situation which you just elaborated, and give you a chance to make these points even more forcefully. We had the Pelosi trip to Taiwan, which on the one hand was a deliberate provocation. It was combined with media attempts to make China the enemy-image. What’s your assessment? There are some who are saying the United States is being pulled into a conflict with China. Where do you think this is headed?

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UN/Evan Schneider
Wang Yi, State Councilor and Foreign Minister of China, condemned House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s trip to Taiwan as a pretext to move more military hardware permanently into the Pacific area.

Zepp-LaRouche: Well, Wang Yi, the Chinese Foreign Minister, commented on Pelosi’s trip, saying that it was a pretext to move more military hardware permanently into the Pacific. And there is an August 10 article in Foreign Affairs, “America Must Prepare for a War Over Taiwan: Being Ready Is the Best Way to Prevent a Fight With China,” calling for the United States to prepare for war with China. Unfortunately, that is really the direction in which things are going.

I think what the PLA did in response—let me restate what is happening here. All the people who are talking about a “rules-based order,” are ignoring the UN resolution which says that the One China policy is what has been accepted by the UN Security Council, including the United Sates as a permanent member of that council. This is official policy.

Therefore, when Pelosi goes to Taiwan to support the forces who want to have independence, this is a violation—I made a comparison in one article I wrote: This is as if Prime Minister Mishustin from Russia would go to Saxony and tell the government in Dresden that they should declare independence from the Berlin Federal government. That wouldn’t be regarded so nicely either. But people think they can do whatever they want with impunity, what they would never want to have done to themselves.

I think the net result of it is that China’s resolution to stick to their policy of peaceful reunification with Taiwan is all the more strengthened. Pelosi has probably sped up the process of reunification one way or the other. China will never allow the independence of Taiwan, which they regard, rightfully, as part of China since ancient times. And the fact that the Japanese occupied Taiwan for a short period doesn’t change that one iota.

So, this Pelosi trip was an ego trip for her, but it inflicted tremendous strategic damage. It is unfortunate that many very stupid people in Europe are taking that trip as a pretext to say, now we also have to declare independence from China, which is leading to the result I just mentioned.

Schlanger: And you mentioned stupidity in Europe going back to your opening statement on the energy crisis. We’re now getting warnings from think tanks in the United Kingdom that people are going to suffer from what they are calling “fuel poverty” in this coming winter. What can you tell us about that?

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Former UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown: With the expected energy price increases, between a third and a half of the population will face energy poverty in the coming year.

Zepp-LaRouche: Former UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown just said that with the expected energy price increase, between a third and half of the population will face energy poverty in the coming year. He says that what will happen to the pensioners and the children reminds him of the worst conditions portrayed by Charles Dickens in his novels, which described the poverty in England at his time. And that is just completely unnecessary. All you had to do is go back to diplomacy. We could reopen Nord Stream 2, which is ready to go. You could get Nord Stream 1 functioning again, and cooperate to solve this problem, rather than going into a winter of complete discontent, and a dark age.

But what we’re looking at is really a literal dark age if the lights were to go out in the winter, and people would be freezing. Add to that the fact that food prices will escalate. There is right now a revolt among the farmers in Holland, and in Germany and also in the United States, in India, and many other countries. You will see more farmers taking to the streets once the harvest is over. That’s the only reason why you don’t see them as much right now.

And the reason why these farmers have become so radical, in a certain sense, is because they realize that the present policies want to prevent them from producing food, at a time when you have a world famine! And they are more and more realizing that the present policies are designed to finish them off, to put them out of business. Most of these farmers are people who regard their job as a vocation, not just as a business. They really think it’s a good thing to produce food for people to live, so it is reaching a point that—some of these farmers have told us, that with the present policies, within a few months, there will be a lack of food for animals and for people. The policies need to be changed dramatically.

Scott Ritter, a former UN weapons inspector, is demanding from Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer that he make sure that U.S. funding enabling the hit list of Ukraine’s Center for Countering of Disinformation (CCD) is cut off. Schumer voted for funding that created the CCD. The hit list of “information terrorists” includes Ritter, Diane Sare, and scores of others.

Schlanger: You brought up the question at the beginning, Helga, that the way to address the discrepancy between what people want and need, and what governments are doing, is to have open discussion and dialogue. And yet, there’s been an operation launched from Ukraine to try to silence co-thinkers of the Schiller Institute, what some people are calling a hit list or a kill list; you’re on it, I’m on it, Diane Sare is on it. Thirty of the 70-something people on the list have spoken at our conferences: This is part of the attempt to control the narrative, using threats. What can be done about this?

Zepp-LaRouche: This is an institution called the Center for Countering Disinformation (CCD), it is part of the Ukrainian presidency. It is in large part financed by the U.S. Congress, which is why Scott Ritter, who is one of the people on the list, is demanding from Sen. Chuck Schumer, against whom Diane Sare is running as an independent LaRouche candidate for Senate, that he move to cut this off, or remedy it. Because otherwise it has the stink of corruption, if you ever have seen it.

Together with some other people on that list, we are demanding of governments, like the German government of Chancellor Scholz, Foreign Minister Baerbock, that they put pressure on the Ukrainian government to completely disassociate themselves from the list and denounce it.

And what the people on that list actually say—like take myself, I’m saying, that if we continue with the present policy of confrontation with Russia and China, there is the danger of a Third World War. And there are many thinking people who are saying something quite similar. And I have demanded an international security architecture to remedy that. If you can’t say that anymore, and if you are now called a “war criminal” because you say that, those who are doing that are really unmasked. So, I am calling on the German government to absolutely disassociate itself from this and reject it. The German government should make sure that this list is eliminated—not the people—but the fact of the list.

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White House/Joyce N. Boghosian
On Aug. 8, 2022, 40 FBI agents raided Mar-a-Lago, home of former President Donald Trump in Palm Beach, FL, and took boxes of records.

Schlanger: And your statement, as well as the statement that’s being signed by others on the list, are posted on the Schiller Institute website. And people should download those statements and circulate them. This is really the question, as Scott Ritter said: “Is Senator Schumer silencing free speech?” And it’s clear that’s what they’re doing.

Now, in the same context, we saw this quite wild raid by the FBI on former President Trump’s home in Mar-a-Lago, Florida. This is again, what your husband, Lyndon LaRouche, warned about: If you don’t move against the permanent bureaucracy of the Justice Department, then you will have lawlessness. What can you say about this?

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EIRNS/Stuart Lewis
On Oct. 6, 1986, 400 armed FBI agents and other law enforcement officers in armored vehicles and a helicopter, raided the offices and residences of Lyndon LaRouche and his associates in Leesburg, VA, utilizing shock-and-awe tactics designed to provoke a violent response.

Zepp-LaRouche: Obviously, I condemn this. But I also have to say, if President Trump would have exonerated my husband, when he was still President, this would not have happened to him. Look at what happened to Trump at Mar-a-Lago, where the FBI did not subpoena, and did not go in an orderly way to settle such questions, but rather raided his home and took everything they could possibly take, with 40 FBI agents involved. When the raid occurred on our house and office in 1986, it was 400 FBI agents and armored vehicles. And that is what Ramsey Clark called the largest destruction of U.S. law in history.

So, I can only say this is terrible. But the effect will probably be that the population will rally all the more around Trump. And it also shows the desperation of the permanent bureaucracy, because they realize that they don’t run things anymore, either in the United States nor worldwide, despite all of these wild moves which we see right now, of diplomats running around the world telling people that they have to follow U.S. orders.

But I can only say, if Trump would have exonerated my husband Lyndon LaRouche, it would not have happened.

Schlanger: In the context of this incredible, heated political situation, what are the plans ahead for the Schiller Institute? I know we’re looking toward a very active set of events and conferences coming up in September. What should people look for?

Zepp-LaRouche: We will celebrate the 100th birthday of my late husband in September with a series of events. You should all tune in, and become part of this mobilization, because if the people of the United States in particular, but also people around the world, would have listened in time to, what Lyndon LaRouche had to say, we would not be in this kind of a crisis.

So, we will celebrate his life and his work, with writings, with conferences, with rallies around the world, and you should join us. That is the only way we will get out of this crisis. And very upfront is, we have our call for a New Bretton Woods Conference and an Ad Hoc Committee to organize for a new monetary system, a new credit system. Only if you eliminate the cause for war can you hope to maintain peace.

So, I can only ask you, join us, join the hundredth birthday celebration of Lyndon LaRouche. That’s the best you can do for yourself and your future.

Schlanger: Well, Helga, it’s good catching up with you, after having missed the last few weeks. People should go to the Schiller Institute website, and hopefully, all things considered, we’ll be back again next week.

Zepp-LaRouche: Till next week!


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