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This transcript appears in the October 21, 2022 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.

[Print version of this transcript]

Helga Zepp-LaRouche

World Citizens of All Countries:
Stop World War III, Create a Better World

This is the edited transcript of Helga Zepp-LaRouche’s keynote presentation to Panel 1 of the Schiller Institute’s Oct. 15, 2022 conference, “Build the New Paradigm: Defeat Green Fascism.” Mrs. Zepp-LaRouche is the founder of the Schiller Institute. The title and subheads have been added. Videos of both conference panels are available here.

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Schiller Institute
Helga Zepp-LaRouche

Hello, dear young and not-so-young friends from around the globe. Let me start with an optimistic note. This war we are engaged in, against an international oligarchy that has driven this civilization to the edge of nuclear extinction, and for a better future of mankind—that battle can be won.

I want to tell you, against the argument you have heard many times—“You can’t do anything anyway. Those above are too powerful.” Well, our two courageous members, Kynan Thistlethwaite and José Vega, just a few days ago demonstrated that ripping the cover from the war hawk AOC [U.S. Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez] dressed in sheep’s clothing, caused the better part of the opponents of the war with Russia, from Tulsi Gabbard to Max Blumenthal to Tucker Carlson and many others, to comment with full support on their intervention. I think we have hit by now around 7–8 million hits on the tweet alone, but then others broadcast it as well, so we probably have 10–20 million people who have watched this. This is just the beginning.

Building a New System

We are in the early phase of a world revolution, where the largest part of the world population is already in the process of building a completely new economic system. Larger and larger segments of the population in Europe and the United States are revolting against the policies of the establishment that are destroying the material basis of existence for most people. I think one thing is obvious: If we can pull humanity back from the brink of the abyss of thermonuclear war, it will be the courageous activities of the international LaRouche youth movement we are building, which will play a major role. Our conference today will be a powerful prelude to that fight.

It may be difficult to conceptualize what it means when I say that we are in the worst crisis of mankind ever, given the fact that universal history is not exactly what people have on their screens every day. If you are 20 today, you were exactly one year old when [the attacks of] September 11th occurred, and that means you have lived your entire life in a world which was affected by a United States in which basic aspects and civil rights of the U.S. Constitution have been eliminated; a world in which senseless interventionist wars in the Middle East and elsewhere cost millions of lives of civilians, women, and children.

But it was not like Ukraine today, where hour by hour you get the coverage about the horrors of these wars. These wars, which killed millions, were anonymous. They became the sort of new normal; somehow, one knew about them, but it didn’t really enter your life.

If you are 30 today, you were not even born when the Berlin Wall came down, which was the beginning of the end of the Soviet Union. So, you have no sensuous memory of the incredible drama; what it meant that the communist system of nearly 70 years vanished, and everything with it—the Cold War, the military blocs of NATO and the Warsaw Pact. NATO remained naturally, not the Warsaw Pact. Or the unbelievable scenes of people climbing up the Wall when it was opened—hugging, embracing each other, where shortly before, people had been shot when they tried to overcome the Iron Curtain from the East to the West.

Naturally, when you lived in the so-called West—the United States or Europe—you had and have little knowledge of daily life in Nigeria or Ghana or India or Peru. And vice versa; people in the Global South have no clear idea of what the crucial issues are in Italy or Slovakia today.

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Pavel Penev
“Let us create an international movement of world citizens, where you, the young people, take the lead to be ambassadors of a vision of a truly human world.” —Helga Zepp-LaRouche. Shown, part of the in-person audience of the Schiller Institute’s Oct. 15 conference, “Build the New Paradigm: Defeat Green Fascism.”

Also, the number of people who still have firsthand knowledge of what World War II was, is shrinking rapidly. And subsequent generations and the cultural paradigm shift which took place, had the effect that the real understanding of what war was like was replaced more and more by the idea of the virtual reality of video games, where—poof—you begin a new war game once you lost the last one.

The Worst Crisis in Human History

We are in the worst crisis of human history, ever. I’m saying that because we are faced with the immediate danger that, because of idiocy, intention, or by accident, we could have a thermonuclear war at practically any moment. As we are sitting here, a nuclear war could start, or in a few weeks or months, because red lines have already been crossed. While the greatest part of the 8 billion people living on the planet today are completely unaware of it, life on Earth could end completely. Not immediately; in the initial nuclear exchange only a few billion would die, but the remaining billions would die in the following weeks and months of nuclear contamination, of starvation, of cold, of burns, robbery, despair.

As Kennedy said, the ones who will die first will be the lucky ones. Then, after the last human being has died, there will be no memory left of the struggle of all these generations for progress from the early forms of the Homo sapiens about 300,000 years ago, to the present. No memory left of the scientific discoveries over the millennia, or great poetry and music, of Confucius, Beethoven, or Einstein. Nor about you; gone, out, deleted.

This is the unparalleled crime of those people who are talking about pre-emptive nuclear strikes; or limited nuclear war, because no such thing exists. Once you use one nuclear weapon, it completely changes the nature of the war, and in all likelihood, all nuclear weapons available will be used.

To understand the chronology of how we got to this point, one has to go back to the collapse of the Soviet Union, where we—the LaRouche movement—answered this great historic opportunity with the idea to create an international peace order for the 21st Century with our proposal for the Eurasian Land-Bridge. This was the idea to integrate the entire Eurasian continent through development corridors, which was our proposal for a peace order. It was one of these absolutely rare historic chances, and I called it at the time, a “star hour of history.”

But at that point, the Anglo-American neocons adopted the so-called Wolfowitz Doctrine of the Project for a New American Century (PNAC), which defined it as the mission of the United States to secure its role as the only remaining superpower, which had to have enough military power to prevent any nation or group of nations to ever challenge the supremacy of the United States—and naturally the British—ever again. The unipolar world forever.

The Wolfowitz doctrine, or one can say the Wolfowitz-Cheney doctrine, was the real reason why the promise by U.S. Secretary of State James Baker III to Gorbachev—that NATO would not move “one inch to the East”—was not kept. Instead, it moved more than 1,000 km closer to the Russian border, and it was also the basis for the “shock therapy” against the Russian economy in the 1990s during the Yeltsin government, which had the explicit aim to destroy the physical economy of Russia—which is still the basis for so-called German Foreign Minister Baerbock, when she keeps repeating that the purpose of sending ever more heavy weapons to Ukraine is to “ruin Russia.”

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National Security Archive/GWU
U.S. Secretary of State James Baker III (right) lied to Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev: “NATO will not extend one inch eastward.” Moscow, February 1990.
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The proposed boundaries of an expanded NATO, as of 2021.

In the meantime, there is open talk about the destruction of Russia, or, as former White House National Security Advisor John Bolton is saying about Putin, that he is a “legitimate military target who is on our target list at this point.” Meaning, he wants him assassinated. To threaten the destruction of a country, [President Vladimir] Putin said very clearly, the aim is to cut Russia into three, four, or more states; to threaten the assassination of the head of state; to have the de facto participation of U.S. and NATO troops in the fighting in Ukraine; provide cyber intelligence to the Ukrainian military; train Ukrainian troops on the U.S. military bases in Germany. All of that means we are already in a war between NATO and Russia.

The Financial-Economic Roots of War with Russia

Russian red lines have already been crossed, and we are dangerously close to the point where Russia perceives that its territorial existence is threatened—which, according to its military doctrine, is the point at which it will use nuclear weapons.

So, it’s not Putin threatening to use nuclear weapons, it’s NATO driving Russia to the point where it either gives itself up as a nation, or goes to war in self-defense. That’s where we are.

Why is this moment so extremely dangerous? It is not just the economic rise of China, and the fact that more than 120 nations cooperating with the Belt and Road Initiative are about to bypass the political and economic and military power of the U.S. and Great Britain, which the Wolfowitz doctrine says can’t be permitted. But even more fundamental is the fact that the neo-liberal model of the trans-Atlantic world is in a systemic breakdown. We are exactly at the point which was forecast by Lyndon LaRouche, my late husband, more than 50 years ago, when [President Richard] Nixon ended the Bretton Woods system by moving from fixed to floating exchange rates. And in this way, opening the floodgates to the unbridled free trade system of profit maximization of monetary gains at the expense of the physical economy and the living standards of the majority of the population.

We are now at the end of that road, which had many steps, such as the step-by-step deregulation of the financial markets, out-sourcing of production to cheap labor markets, just-in-time production, shareholder value society, derivatives speculation, etc.

When that system had a systemic crisis in 2007–08, rather than correcting the root of the problem—monetary gains at the expense of production—the central banks resorted to quantitative easing, reckless money printing as if there was no tomorrow. Now, what is happening is exactly what happened in Weimar Germany in 1923. After several years of many trillions of dollars of money printing, suddenly within a few months there is a hyperinflationary explosion.

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A German housewife burns money made worthless to heat her cooking stove in the post-World War I hyperinflation in 1923.

Now, the central banks are between a rock and a hard place. If they want to curb galloping inflation by quantitative tightening, then they face a collapse of the over-indebted firms and the triggering of a crisis in the emerging markets. This is why the Bank of England is breathlessly vacillating between QE, QT, and then QE again. And the ridiculous, evil [UK Prime Minister] Liz Truss is breathlessly vacillating between taxes down, taxes up. They are faced with a collapse of the bond market. The only difference from Germany 1923 is that this time, the hyperinflation is not in one country, but in all countries connected to the dollar as a world currency.

We are now at the point forecast by LaRouche in 1971. The continuation on the monetarist road would necessarily lead to a new depression, a new fascism, and a new world war, unless one would establish a completely different economic world order. The majority of the world’s population is doing exactly that. The BRICS—Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa; the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, which is most of the countries of the eastern Eurasian continent; ASEAN, the Southeast Asian countries; CICA, the Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures, which is right now meeting in Astana [Kazakhstan]; and many other countries of the Global South are very advanced in constructing a new international currency and a new economic system, based on completely different principles than the neo-liberal system. Namely, on the need to overcome poverty for everybody in the developing countries; increase the living standard of the populations; put the common good first; and cooperation among sovereign states for the mutual benefit.

The so-called economists of the West, who are all completely and utterly discredited as ferociously incompetent, had better reflect on what the best Russian economist, Sergei Glazyev, said: That we would not be in this crisis if people would have listened to Lyndon LaRouche.

The Essence of Our Movement

Now I come to the essence of what the international youth movement must be all about. You, the representatives of the youth today and of all future generations to come, must make a solemn commitment to end the condition of this world where the majority of mankind—5 or 6 billion people—are deprived of their full potential as human beings, simply because they lack enough food, clean water, decent housing, universal education, and a modern health system, just so that a class of parasitical billionaires and millionaires can enjoy their privileges.

This is what the LaRouche movement has been about from the very beginning: to overcome the poverty and under-development of the countries of the Global South as a morally unacceptable relic and continuation of colonialism in new clothes. When Lyndon LaRouche was serving in the China-Burma-India theater at the end of the Second World War, he witnessed the brutish behavior of the British in the Winter and Spring of 1946 in the riots in Kolkata, where he saw the British Empire in action. He never stopped hating the imperial suppression of the developing sector, and never changed his commitment to work to replace the evil system of colonialism with a just new world economic order.

I joined his nascent organization after a trip I made in 1971 on a freighter, which took me to China in the middle of the Cultural Revolution, and short stopovers in some African and Asian countries. When you travel with a cargo ship, you get a realistic view of the living conditions of the people. You see the unnecessary poverty which would be overcome so easily with Western technologies if the political will to do so existed. That trip has shaped my life ever since.

I came back from it with the deep conviction that this system of under-development, through no fault of their own, in which the developing countries find themselves up to the present day, had to be changed. When I investigated all the political organizations in Berlin after my return, I found that LaRouche was the only one who talked about the need to build up infrastructure, agriculture, industry, education, health systems, and so forth in the so-called Third World.

Our movement has worked on that perspective for the last half-century. We worked out development plans for Africa, Latin America, Asia. We worked with Indira Gandhi on a 40-year development plan for India; with President José López Portillo of Mexico on a Latin American infrastructure plan, which was called “Operation Juárez.”

We expanded the original plan of the Eurasian Land-Bridge and all the other development plans we had written, into the concept of “The New Silk Road Becomes the World Land-Bridge,” which has now begun to be implemented by China with the Belt and Road Initiative and the Global Development Initiative, as Sergei Glazyev wrote in his powerful tribute for the 100th birthday commemoration of Lyndon LaRouche.

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The spirit of Bandung has come alive again in the idea of non-violence. Shown, leaders of the Non-Aligned Movement of nations in conference, determined to end colonialism in all its forms. Bandung, Indonesia, April 1955.
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WT&S/Dick DeMarsico
The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

The most important aspect of the world revolution I mentioned, is that there is a renaissance of the Non-Aligned Movement occurring, which has expressed itself—among other things—in the unwillingness of many countries of the Global South to choose sides between the U.S. and Russia and China, and to be pulled into a geopolitical confrontation, which could only end up in a nuclear war. The spirit of Bandung, of the determination of the African and Asian countries of the conference in 1955 in Bandung, [Indonesia,] to end colonialism in all of its forms—which [still] exists today in the form of the shackles of a rigged monetary system, which suppresses the development of the so-called developing sector—that spirit has come back to life in a powerful way. It is the idea of non-violence of Mahatma Gandhi which defeated the British Empire, and which also inspired the civil rights movement of Martin Luther King, which we need today to defeat the danger of thermonuclear extinction.

A New Paradigm Is Emerging

We need a completely New Paradigm in the way we think about humanity. Not as the interest of one nation or group of nations against the other, but as the one humanity first. You need to adopt the thinking of the Coincidence of Opposites of Nicholas of Cusa, that the One has a higher power than the Many.

This is the same thinking as that Cai Yuanpei, the first Education Minister of the Republic of China and the President of Beijing University, who had the vision of a “great community of the whole world,” which in Chinese is called datong shijie, which is clearly reminiscent of Xi Jinping’s “shared community of the one future of mankind.”

It’s the same idea which Friedrich List had about the continuous perfection and integration of all infrastructure and communications systems that would create the precondition for permanent progress in all areas of knowledge in science and art, and allow human beings to exchange ideas that unfold all their talents. This infrastructural integration would eventually lead to the unification of all nations into the one humanity—as he called it, a “republic of the planet”—based on the economy of mankind.

The same idea was naturally expressed by Friedrich Schiller, who emphatically made the argument that there is no contradiction between a world citizen and a patriot, provided that the interest of the nation is coherent with that of humanity as a whole.

Obviously, the most elevated artistic celebration of that concept is in Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, the composition of Schiller’s Ode to Joy, where the chorus sings “All men become brethren”—“Alle Menschen werden Brüder.” This is not a utopia to think in terms of the one humanity first. It will be the precondition to overcome the most dangerous crisis in the history of mankind.

So, let us create an international movement of world citizens, where you, the young people from all over the world, are taking the lead to be the ambassadors of this vision of a world which will be truly human. Since many of you are familiar with the idea of somebody born in the oldest city of Germany—Trier—let me suggest a slight variation of this idea, since I am also born in Trier, and let us say, “World citizens of all countries, unite to stop World War III and create a better world.”

Thank you.

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