LAROUCHE TO ITALIAN SENATE DEFENSE COMMITTEE:
A Strategy To Defend the Nation-State
On June 5, 2007, Lyndon LaRouche addressed the Defense Committee of the Italian Senate in the context of the Committee's "Investigation of the Present State and Perspectives of the Defense Industry and Cooperation on Armaments." Here is LaRouche's testimony, followed by questions and comments by members of the Committee, and a final response by LaRouche. The remarks by Italian Senators have been translated from Italian by EIR.
Mr. Chairman, Honorable Senators, the subject of today's event focusses on the correlation between defense and economics. I want to emphasize in particular the technological aspects of that correlation.
To understand the problem, we must return to its origins, and to the basis of the character of the nation-state, which we find in the Council of Florence of 1439, and in the Concordantia Catholica of Nicholas of Cusa, who participated in the Council. These events marked the foundation of modern science, thanks in part to Nicholas of Cusa, whose proposals, amplified by many others who participated in that Council, led to the creation of a new form of society which we now call the "modern nation-state," and which in English, is also indicated by the expression "commonwealth society," a society in which all of the people are considered part of the nation, which must be governed in the common interest of all of the people.
Louis XI founded a state of this type in France. A second, similar state was established in England under Henry VII. Since that time, as we know from the 16th Century, particularly from the writings of a famous man from that period, [Nicolò Machiavelli], on warfare, that the nature of warfare and statecraft changed with the introduction of the modern nation-state, and the countermeasures which are occurring against it; that the ability of the old feudal system to come back, was impeded, as was indicated, with the role of the total people of a city, or of a nation, in warfare. In this process, what became known as modern economy, and modern technology, became a determining force in warfare.
We had a continuation of that under the influence of Paolo Sarpi, especially toward the beginning of the 17th Century, in terms of the so-called Liberal system, which became ultimately the Anglo-Dutch system of economy and statecraft. And then we had, of course, the continuation of religious warfare, into 1648, when the modern nation-state was established under the influence of Cardinal Mazarin, with the key role of Jean-Baptiste Colbert.
And if we look at the relationship between economy, technology, science, and politics, and warfare, in this period, we find that we can trace the entirety of the modern history of warfare, and military and political actions, from these roots in history. The struggle between the idea of the commonwealth society, and the idea of empire, in the new liberal form, which is typically the British Empire form, has been a continuing struggle to the present day. As today, the attempt to form globalization as a replacement for the sovereign nation-state—that is, to establish a world empire—is the center of the ongoing conflict.
And there's a constant temptation in some forces, to shut down the sovereign power of a nation over its own economy. This is called globalization; and the attempt to resist that is in trouble right now. I'm one of the resistors.
So, what we face is this: We face an attempt under certain international financier interests, who are identical with the idea of globalization, to shut down the industries, and the scientific capabilities, of nations, and to distribute these capabilities around the world, through cheap-labor societies.
For example: Europe has been stripped increasingly, especially since Maastricht, of its independent technological and military capability. The Soviet Union, the former Soviet Union, was ruined. The nations of Eastern Europe, which were part of the Comecon, are in far worse economic and social condition than they were under Soviet domination, as a result of this process. Germany is being bankrupted. Italy is being ruined, especially the essential industries which have been important to Italy since the middle of the 19th Century, from the time of the influence of Riemann on the scientific thinking in Italy.
We've now got to the point that the basic industries in northern Italy, in particular, are being lost. A certain amount of industry exists, but there is tremendous pressure, especially from a formation called the hedge funds, to loot industries in every country, in every part of the world. And there's tremendous pressure to destroy particularly those sections of the economy which are traditionally part of the state's economy, whether on the state, municipal, or national level. And the struggle is international.
The Fight To Save Social Security
And the Auto Industry
For example: The most recent case we had of this, which affects directly today's topic, is that, during the year 2005, I had organized around me, a mobilization of the Democratic Party and others, in the United States, to defeat the attempt to loot the Social Security system of the United States—that policy introduced by the current President of the United States and some people around him. At the same time, it was obvious to me, in February of 2005, that there was a plan to destroy the automobile industry of the U.S., and to turn the automobile industry over to foreign cheap-labor producers of automobiles.
Now, this was crucial, because it was a strategic-military issue, as well as a mere economic issue. The United States, in this past century, had a very special kind of capability, which was built up since Abraham Lincoln in the 19th Century, but was significant at the end of World War I, in which we were targetted by the United Kingdom/Great Britain; and our military engaged in a number of studies which were centered around the naval power negotiations of the early 1920s, in which the British were ganged up with Japan, demanding a reduction of U.S. naval capability to a size which would satisfy the British Empire. There were even plans by Japan and Britain and others, to conduct naval warfare against the United States, not to conquer the United States, but to reduce its naval power.
It was in this period that Japan, which was at that point, and had been since 1895, an asset of the British royal family—Japan had agreed to enter into the destruction of the Pearl Harbor Naval Base. This was back in the 1920s, at the time that Japan was an ally of Britain.
Later, the irony changed: President Roosevelt induced the British not to ally with Hitler, or at least some of them not to, and Japan continued its course and attacked Pearl Harbor anyway, as an ally of Nazi Germany.
But during this period, the U.S. military developed a policy whose impact became apparent under Franklin Roosevelt. As of the beginning of March of 1933, at the point that President Roosevelt was first inaugurated as President of the United States, Hitler had already achieved dictatorial powers, toward the end of February, right after the Reichstag's burning. So that when Roosevelt entered office, as President, in early March of 1933, he already knew that a probable war was going to happen. So, Roosevelt's policy immediately was one of both recovery—we had just suffered a 30% destruction of our economy from 1929 to 1933, so Roosevelt turned to a gentleman, Harry Hopkins, who set up a program which was both a military program and a civilian program.
Roosevelt's intention was, to use the same approach to developing industrial power, and rebuilding agriculture, to build up the civilian capability of the United States, but also at the same time, to prepare the United States to be capable of meeting its responsibilities in respect to Europe, from what was already known by Roosevelt, to be the Hitler threat.
So therefore, you had the famous phenomenon of Harry Hopkins, with the people who became significant general officers during World War II and afterwards, who were part of this program.
So, the United States' development, out of the Depression, to become the most powerful economy the world had ever seen, by 1943, was a result of a combination of military development, on a civilian economy basis. In other words, what you were seeing then, with the United States' role in this war, was a resolution of something that happened back with the Council of Florence, back in the middle of the 15th Century, in which the commonwealth society was formed; in which the long history in European experience, of basing military power, where needed, and the power of conflict as needed, basing it on the development of economy and of all the people—a new kind of nation-state, in which we try to eliminate all relics of serfdom or slavery.
So therefore, the development of the economy, for every square kilometer, and for the population within every square kilometer, to increase the productive powers of labor, and general well-being, and development of the character of the people, was our tradition. What happened in the Treaty of Westphalia; this kind of system, while it was never realized perfectly, largely because of the wars of Britain and France, and the Dutch who came in later; nonetheless, this model has been characteristic of every successful period of development, from then to the present day.
The United States' development was merely a more perfected expression of it, because we had no legacy of oligarchical rule in our society. And that has been the difference: that whereas European systems tend to be monetary systems, or based on monetary systems, the United States system, in terms of constitutional design, is not a monetary system; it's a credit system. That is, our currency, according to law, according to constitutional law, can be created only by the government, with the consent of the legislative branch, the junior partner of the legislative branch. And this power of the government to create and utter money, or to create credit, then becomes the financial power of government, which controls and is able to direct this force to industry, to agriculture, and general development of the people.
So, the power of the United States, the remarkable increase of the power of the United States, from being bankrupt in 1933, to the time that Roosevelt became President, and up until the end of the war: The greatest physical economic, military power in the world history, therefore, had been created in a short period of time, from depression, under the use of the U.S. constitutional provisions, which enabled us to make that kind of mobilization. We were not subject to control by foreign monetary authorities, foreign financial powers. And that was the secret of our ability to organize. And we would have done very well, if Roosevelt had not died, if we'd kept on and developed the world, freeing the world from colonialism and that sort of thing. We didn't.
A Sudden Change
Now, today you're in a situation, in which there is an attempt to destroy this legacy of modern European civilization, a legacy established beginning with the Council of Florence. The legacy of the modern nation-state based on the political equality of the human individual, and the responsibility of the state to promote the development of the individual, and to promote the improvement of the political powers and physical powers of the individual.
Since Roosevelt died, this has been underway. It was not too obvious at first, but when Truman came in, there was a sudden change. The change was typified by two things which were conspicuous at the time. Roosevelt had been committed to the elimination of all forms of colonialism, immediately, at the end of the war. He'd also been committed to the use of the military power we had developed, to convert it back into a civilian capability, and to use a significant part of that civilian economic power, to assist freed nations, as well as rebuilding Europe, but assisting freed nations, which had been colonialized nations, to give them the development which would make them truly independent nations.
That policy was abandoned. And our rate of development in the postwar period slowed down as a result. But nonetheless, we maintained that system, with the damage done to it in that fashion, until the assassination of John F. Kennedy. And John F. Kennedy's assassination allowed a different policy to be introduced. John Kennedy's assassination allowed certain forces in Europe and the United States, to proceed with what President Eisenhower had warned against, in leaving office: that a so-called military-industrial complex took actually political control of the destiny of the United States and pretty much of Europe and the other parts of the world.
Now, they did the same thing to us that was done in the Peloponnesian War to the Greeks. The Greeks were induced to engage, through Sophistry, in a prolonged war which destroyed Greece, which has not come back to the present day. Athens has never recovered from the long war it fought in the Peloponnesian War. The history of civilization, since that time, especially European civilization, has been that long wars have ruined us repeatedly.
As contrasted, for example, with the case of Louis XI, who was attacked by everyone on every side. He bribed even some of his persecutors to make peace with him, and he made a profit on peace, by avoiding war, because he used the occasion of freedom from war, to develop the French population, which is where modern France as a significant power emerged.
Long Wars of the Recent Period
We did the reverse. With the Indochina war, we went into an unnecessary war, a war which was launched on the basis of lies. And we got ourselves into a long war which continued until we decided to stop it arbitrarily, because it wasn't working. Then we continued with all sorts of nonsense, but then again, we got into an Iraq war [in 1991], right after the fall of the Soviet Union, but fortunately, we didn't make a horrible mistake—we got out of it, before it became a serious war of occupation, which would have ruined us.
But then we went into the Balkan wars, which were ruinous, and we're suffering in Europe, until today, from the effects of these ongoing Balkan wars, because we haven't cleaned up the mess we made with these wars. Then, under the present Administration, we got into a long war in Iraq. We got into it by the blessing of Tony Blair from London, who lied his way all around the world on this one. And without Tony Blair's lies, which I personally got involved in defeating—and I got punished for defeating them—we got into another long war, in Southwest Asia, in Afghanistan, in Iraq. We're now engaged in a potential war in Iran. We're now engaged in a generalized war in the entire so-called Arab world, which is now spreading into Turkey, as a threat of destabilization. So, the whole region is now an area of instability.
In the meantime, we have lost much of our economy. We've destroyed it largely through globalization, and largely through laws which allowed hedge funds, and similar kinds of pestilences, to move in and take us over. Take our industries, take even our government industries, shut them down, and loot them, and move on to loot the next victim. And this is a process I've seen in Italy, as I've seen it in the United States. I've seen it in France. I see it massively, especially since the Maastricht agreements, in Germany. I see the conditions in Eastern Europe, the former Comecon territories, where the conditions of life physically are worse than they were under the Soviets. They have the freedom to contemplate and discuss their misery. But their misery is much better than it was then; that is, it's much bigger.
So, now we see a stripping of Italy the same way, northern Italy, of the basic industries which were associated since the time of the middle of the 19th Century, with the emergence around [Enrico] Betti, of the new scientific movements in Italy. And we had a great, for example, aerospace development in Italy, typical of military capabilities, other capabilities. And these industries, on which this depended, I see are now stripped. I go to Milan, and I find areas where there were large auto industries of high technologies, and small industries—they no longer exist. I see people, skinny girls marching around on platforms, as a substitute for industry. I see threats to the Italian economy. And my concern in this, looking at it as a part of a world community, is to say, how can we save the economy from the ravages of this process of globalization?
And then go back to 2005. What I proposed in 2005 was this: that the United States government set up a special corporation, and buy up the parts of the auto industry, especially the high-tech sector, which we would not be using for automobiles, and to use this high-tech sector of the industry, for developing infrastructure. For example, we had dams, rivers, water systems, power systems, municipal systems, all kinds of things that are essential for an economy, were decrepit. But in the auto industry's machine-tool sector, we had the capability of fixing every one of these problems.
I simply proposed that the United States government should make emergency legislation; don't allow these plants to be shut down; but rather keep them functioning by converting them back to infrastructure programs, and similar kinds of programs, which are urgently needed anyway, and thus to keep the productive technological power of the United States at some kind of a level.
Now we see that was not done. And there was tremendous pressure put on members of the Democratic Party, who I was collaborating with, on this question of defending Social Security. We had a fine alliance, until it came to this issue of so-called bailing out the automobile industry, by converting it. And today, we don't have a U.S. auto industry anymore. We have a wreckage, which is being looted, as a chicken is being looted of the last flesh on its bones. We have a Japan industry which has moved in to take over some of it. But Japan has a cheap-labor industry, so we have a breakdown in communities, in the state of Michigan, the state of Ohio, the state of Indiana, and elsewhere—a breakdown in the economy of states which is a very serious threat to the stability of the United States as a whole, because we didn't do this.
So therefore, my concern in looking at Europe, as well as the United States, is to look at this kind of problem, and say, what do we do?
A Dual-Use Economy
Therefore, it is necessary, as it has been since the period of the Renaissance, it is necessary to maintain the development of economic capabilities which are also the capabilities of national defense, when national defense is imperilled. This always involves, and has involved, scientific and technological progress, and the development of the skill levels of the population. Therefore, my concern would be: How can you take the sector of the economy which is still the so-called state sector, and how can you maintain in the state sector, capabilities which are both the core scientific-technological capabilities, and maintain them in the state sector, even if they're not in the military sector as such, but maintain them where the conversion to a defense capability exists.
Now, this takes us into areas of new kinds of technologies, which is something which I'm rather notorious for: Always go to new kinds of technologies, more advanced ones, and realize that if you have to have defense, national defense action, if you're able to mobilize a competent one, it's because you have personnel who can be mobilized for that purpose who are efficient, and because you have the economic capabilities, the forms of technology and otherwise, to make that kind of conversion of the type that Roosevelt made, toward the late part of the 1930s, by developing a program for the first day he walked into office, knowing that a world war was threatened, and he had to prepare for it, So, his plans for preparing for warfare, and his preparations for developing the economy, were one and the same thing. So the idea of the dual-use economy, that is, an economy which has a high-technology orientation, is used immediately for necessary infrastructure or other economic purposes, which gives you the potential to do this in two ways: one way, in terms of the productive capability as such; secondly, the population.
Now the biggest problem we have, of nations today, is a breakdown of the capabilities of our younger generation. I work largely with an 18-to-35 age group. I concentrated largely, initially, on the 18-to-25 age group. I've been doing that ever since about 1999-2000. And what we run into, is the fact that very little attention is being given, effectively, where there's talk about a youth movement, and a youth political movement, very little attention is being given to developing the potential creative powers of that generation.
There is a real potential in these young people, these young adults. This is our future. For any generation in history, in my knowledge and my experience of history, it's always been the development of a young generation, young adult generation, which is the foundation of the future society. Two generations from the time of entering adulthood, to retirement age, or something like that, has been the determining factor in the success or failure of society.
As a result of certain changes in the postwar period, typified by the Congress for Cultural Freedom and things like that, we've had an existentialist trend in the thinking of the generation which was born between 1945 and about 1956-57, the first major [postwar] recession. That generation, you will observe, in the United States, is running all the top positions, with very few exceptions. They are all unresponsive—I have friends among these people—but the problem I have is, they are so unresponsive to certain kinds of problems. They postpone and evade reality. I wouldn't want them in command of a military force: They would fail. It's not the lack of military training, it's the lack of a sense of commitment to get the job done, the commitment to make the breakthrough.
And what we need, I would think in Italy in particular—I'm cognizant of the problems which exist for Italy here—but the problem, I think, is just that: Is to have a policy of keeping this dual-use approach to economy in view; to look at this constantly from the standpoint of what may be required through crises in the future, and to concentrate especially on developing cadre levels from among the young people within the 18-to-35 age group. Because they are the people who are going to think about a future. They're going to think about what the world looks like two generations from now, 50 years from now. And keeping their morale, and giving them an economy to play with—so to speak—which has dual-use capability, is the resource that you require in any crisis that's coming up. The crisis we face globally today is way beyond anything Italy is going to try to take care of. It can't be done; it's too big. It has to be done by the giants in the world. But, no nation should give up its sovereignty just because it's not in a position to run the world. It has to run its own nation; it has to be a part of the deliberation process among nations.
So that's my general view.
Dialogue with Members of the Committee
Sen. Sergio De Gregorio, Chairman: I thank Professor LaRouche for having presented his considerations in such a detailed manner.
Before giving the floor to the other members of the Committee who wish to intervene, I would like to ask a question myself.
In your resumé, I read that you were the political author of what, in 1983, was officially presented by President Ronald Reagan as the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI). And you also developed an idea of your own concerning the anti-missile shield, which I would like to ask you to express clearly, in order to deal with a subject that is less general and more technical, which may bring us back to the military questions in which we are particularly interested. Thus, we would like you to discuss your theories, and do so in relation to the discussion currently underway in our Committee.
Sen. Luigi Ramponi: I would like to refer to what the Chairman just mentioned, and that is, the relevance of the anti-missile shield today.
President Bush has begun his trip to Europe. A procedure has been initiated for the installation of a strategic defense system in Poland and the Czech Republic. This has caused a reaction from Russia. The Americans claim that the system is necessary in order to prevent, deter, and if necessary, to intervene against, the threat of a missile attack originating from Iran. Russia reacts by claiming that Iran does not currently have a missile capability sufficient to justify the need for a missile shield. This is the current situation.
I believe that a solution can be found which can be a shared solution, and that it will be fairly easy to reach such a solution once those involved stop acting as separate parties, and when both countries, if it is necessary, begin to create an anti-missile system, certainly not against Russia, but against whoever wishes to threaten global stability through vectorial nuclear attacks. Do you think that a solution will be found to this conflict? I think so.
I have always been fascinated by your theories on development, including those which are—to be frank—more detailed than what you presented today, which made reference—I will limit myself to citing a part of those ideas which I find most interesting: to the realization of large axes of development, which you defined as "infrastructure," today, across Asia to Europe, and which even foresee a connection with the American continent. It just so happens that the cover of a magazine [Forum International], which was distributed to us here, shows the project for a tunnel under the sea which would cross the Bering Strait. Many of the areas you have indicated for the development of the great connections—Afghanistan, Iran, and Iraq—currently find themselves in a very difficult situation. That is where the northern line was supposed to pass. Have you changed your view with respect to what you proposed 10 or 15 years ago? Objectively, it doesn't seem to me that the conditions currently exist to proceed with the realization of these great axes, which however, could allow for taking a large step forward in the pacification of those territories, ensuring their development. What do you think of such an hypothesis?
You were quite prophetic in predicting a crash of the financial world at the end of the previous century. You said it early, and your prediction was—allow me to use this phrase—"right on." What is your expectation regarding the solidity of the financial and stock market worlds today, and in the short-term?
Sen. Lidia Brisca Menapace:[*] Professor LaRouche, I listened to what you said with great interest, including because—please excuse me for pointing this out—one does not expect such an elaborate cultural outlook from an American. And thus, I feel very comfortable, as if you were a European; this is intended as a compliment. [In response to an interjection from Senator Ramponi:] I certainly don't pretend that everyone agree with my comments!
I was very struck by the fact that, in anticipation of the construction of the anti-missile shield, opposition is coming in particular from Bohemia [the Czech Republic]. It is very strange for an Eastern European country to react negatively to an American proposal. I would like to know if you consider it correct to think that the opposition coming from that nation is due to the fact that it was a very important location for high-level industrial production, and that there is still a memory of this, and thus the population feels almost robbed. Otherwise, I would be at a loss to explain this protest coming from Bohemia, where there are still many street demonstrations on this issue.
I would also like to know if you agree with the possibility of adding the term "scientific" to the expression "military-industrial complex," since all of the universities are involved in the development of this policy, with the result that there is an impoverishment, a theft of scientific research, which in this case, is subjugated to other ends.
I also found it very interesting when you stated that the infrastructure which a country must preserve, even a relatively small country like Italy, which should not allow any of its potential to be expropriated, must be understood above all, at the level of civilian development, which is so interesting and complex, that it can also be used for defense. Do you believe, as I do, that in the interest of the youth, a policy should emerge aimed at combating the lack of job security (a question which concerns the civilian economy), rather than favoring enlistment in the military? Could this be a policy of civilian infrastructure which may also be used for the defense of the country, at a time when it is almost primary with respect to an explicit defense of the country?
In your opinion, was the difficulty the United States had in dealing with the disaster in New Orleans due to the fact that a policy of civilian infrastructure has not been implemented because there was a concentration predominantly on a military policy and a military empire? Indeed, it seems strange that a rich, large, powerful country, such as the United States of America, allows New Orleans, more than a year after the disaster, to remain in conditions which are unacceptable, in which the residents still can not return, to the point that the very nature of a place which is so significant, important, and well-known in the world's culture, risks being changed.
Sen. Gianni Nieddu: I would also like to thank the professor for his stimulating intervention.
In closing your presentation, you stated that no state should relinquish its sovereignty, even if that state is so small, that it is unable to deal with large processes at the international level; therefore, Italy is too small to deal with these processes, but it shouldn't relinquish its sovereignty. Now, what comes to my mind is the transfer of sovereignty which European nation-states have carried out in order to allow the construction of the unitary process in Europe, which guaranteed peace after the Second World War, the management of historical conflicts in the great European plains between France, Germany, the interests of Germany, France, and England, and so forth. This transfer of sovereignty involves all types of power, with the lone exception, until now, of foreign policy and defense, which have remained under the authority of nation-states; however, an attempt is currently underway concerning defense policy, to transfer part of the powers from the states to the European Union. It is a difficult, very complex, and contradictory attempt, but on defense policy as well, an attempt is underway to transfer sovereignty from nation-states to the European Union.
Well then, based on these considerations, a question arises: Was this process a mistake? If the size of the Italian state, as well as the German and French states, is not sufficient to effectively deal with the enormous financial power of the multinational corporations, which are the entities which promote globalization, with an enormous financial power which threatens the sovereignty of these states because it moves economic interests so large that they are sufficient to condition the economy, as you were saying, to the point of eliminating entire portions of those economies; if the scale of the state is too small; and if, on the other hand, it is a mistake to relinquish sovereignty in order to have a larger scale (at the continental, European level); then what is the response which would allow for making supranational economic-financial power coincide with supranational political power?
If the Italian government does not have the power to influence the actions of the multinational corporations by means of its own laws, who can do it, if not a supranational power? We can regulate the activities of Italian companies, or foreign companies in Italy, but the power of multinational companies is so broad that they are able to avoid this dimension of politics.
Sen. Silvana Pisa: I wish to thank our guest for his very long and complex intervention. I would like to discuss the question of armaments: We are seeing a strong race towards rearmament, both nuclear and non-nuclear rearmament, and thus a very large increase in spending on armaments in Russia, the United States, and China. Today, this spending is very high, higher than it has ever been in the past.
Let's think of the question of the anti-missile shield, which is under discussion in the current period, and these technologies which the United States, by way of bilateral accords with Poland and the Czech Republic, in some manner wishes to place on Russia's borders, and which are seen by Putin (we have seen this in Putin's interviews in recent days) as a threat to the current strategic balance. I also hope, as Senator Ramponi already stated, that this matter will be resolved positively, but it currently represents an element of destabilization which frankly, we did not need at this time. However, I believe that the issue is part of a race to rearmament which I see as a serious threat to the global strategic balance. So I pose the question, for example: Why were the nuclear non-proliferation treaties abandoned? Why, going from nuclear to other fields, did the United States abandon the ABM Treaty in 1992? Why did the United States never ratify the CFE Treaty on conventional arms?
A second question: To go from warfare to a policy of civilian investment, for reconversion from military to civilian, substantial investments are needed; it's not so easy. Where can the funds be found to carry out this reconversion?
Well, first of all, there are a number of questions, since the theme comes up again and again, I think probably I'd better start by answering that first.
The danger now, which is coming largely from Anglo-American interests, but not from U.S. interests: Putin has an accurate perception of what his problem is. His problem is not a U.S. problem. His problem is a British problem.
Remember, look, you've got a situation in which the United States was plunged into two successive long wars, one from 1964 to 1972, and now the more recent wars. These are long wars. They are Peloponnesian wars, which have the same kind of cause as the original Peloponnesian War. They're caused by a certain kind of stupidity in the population, the leading circles of the population, called Sophistry, which means a society which has no principle, and has given up the idea of principle for the sake of popular opinion and expediency, or what is called Sophistry, is no longer capable of judging how to deal with the situation.
Remember, for example, the case of Louis XI. Louis XI bribed his enemies and made a profit on it! He bribed his enemies to prevent them from going to war. He bribed them not to attack him. And by the opportunity of peace, he built his economy up to be the model commonwealth economy of Europe, on which Henry VII modelled England. So, the modern nation-state was based on governments which had principle. The principle was the commonwealth principle. The commonwealth principle was established in Europe, in 1439, with the Council of Florence. It was established, even at a late stage, with a breakout of the Turkish wars, the disasters that struck the Renaissance with the Turkish wars.
Nicholas of Cusa replied with De Pace Fidei, to seek peace with the enemy, to avoid war, on the basis of the benefits of peace.
The United States Is the Target
Now this was pretty much the U.S. policy, most of the time. We had some corrupt influences, but what we have now is this: We have a determination of some forces to eliminate the sovereign nation-state. It's called the post-Westphalia policy. The post-Westphalia policy, which is centered in Britain, is the idea of getting the United States as a Roosevelt-memory state, to destroy itself, and we are obliging in destroying ourselves. The destruction of the United States caused by the succession of the Indochina War, and what has been going on in Southwest Asia, what has been going on in Europe, as well as Southwest Asia, with the Balkan wars, which followed the outbreak of the first Iraq War.
These wars are destroying the United States by its own hand, just the way that certain forces destroyed Athens by its own hand, with this kind of foolishness.
So, the United States is the target. We have idiots in the United States who think they're not the target. They think they are powers that are going on to victory. The United States is not going to have any world victory coming out of this operation it's pulling now—it will not happen. It's foolishness. We're destroying ourselves. The idea that we're healthy, we're gaining, we're a power: We are destroying everything! We're destroying our military! It will take us a generation to rebuild the military that's been destroyed in this period. We destroyed our army entirely. We destroyed our military ground reserves. We have only air power and naval power left.
What's the policy then? The policy is, twofold, under globalization: First of all, the objective is not to put a few missiles in Czechia or in Poland—that is not the policy. That is a stunt, that's a diversion, that's a provocation. The policy is, to build a space-based system of missile systems which can send weapons descending on Earth any time they want to, and to have a U.S. control, or Anglo-American control, over that system—that's number one. Number two, is to eliminate all regular military ground forces, controlled by governments. To eliminate governmental control over military ground forces, and to use private armies. This is called, in the United States, the Revolution in Military Affairs, for which Cheney has been a spokesman, ever since he was Secretary of Defense under George H.W. Bush.
In fact, what you're seeing in the world today, for example, is the use of killer games, point-and-shoot killer games, which are producing a new terrorist phenomenon, of our own children who are becoming fanatics and psychotics in shooting. We have rages of these all over the world, spreading out of the killer computer games, especially since 1999-2000, when the companies that had been making money on producing computer systems, no longer had large subsidies from the U.S. and other governments, and therefore they went into a new market of producing on a mass base, games trained to kill people in mass point-and-shoot effects. We trained police forces in this. We trained military forces in this. And we now have people volunteering to do it, on campuses and elsewhere, by killer games produced by Microsoft and others.
So, this is the key. You have now got a system where we are eliminating the U.S. military ground forces in Iraq. What are we going to replace them with? Well, look at Halliburton! The corporation that Cheney used to work with. Halliburton, and other companies of that type, are actually being funded massively to conduct the war, while the U.S. military is being destroyed and ground up on the field. And it will take a generation to rebuild what we have lost in military forces in this period.
A New Kind of Empire
So you have the idea of One World, with a new kind of empire, the new version of the Roman Empire, which is dominated by a space-based system, a monopoly of space-based weapons, which can target any point on Earth they want to. Which means, eliminate all resistance to the empire.
Number two, eliminate military forces which are national forces, which have national loyalties. Have only professional armies, of people with point-and-shoot killing capability, which you can recruit from your own youth, who have learned to do point-and-shoot activity blindly. You know, the typical soldier hesitated to kill. They hesitated to do repeated killing. For example, in Vietnam, where people would train snipers, they would export people as snipers, and they'd train them as snipers. They'd go out and they'd make one kill, and they couldn't make a second one. The idea of lying on a trail, lying in manure and everything all night, and waiting for somebody to come down the trail, and shoot them, as a sniper operation, and then do it a second time—the second or third time, they couldn't do it any more. Only very specially psychotic people can do that sort of thing.
So, therefore, we've now developed a system, which was developed in the U.S. military and otherwise, to train people. How can you train people to become point-and-shoot killers, with no humanity in their mind?
Take the case in the Bronx. You had a guy of African-American extraction, middle-class guy, no weapons, came out of his house, and the police outside the house said, "Show some identification." He reached into his pocket to pull out his wallet—they put 40 slugs into him. Because they'd been through this kind of training program.
So, that's the thing we're up against. We're up against a process to destroy the nation-state as an institution, to destroy national sovereignty, and destroy the idea of civilization as a thing you're defending. So, that's where we're at. That's what we're trying to prevent.
Now, this came up again under the first question, on this question of development. There was a change in 1987—it was referred to by Senator Ramponi. In 1987, we had the depression. We had a Hoover-style depression. We had an idiot who became the chairman of the Federal Reserve, Greenspan, and Greenspan said, "Wait for me! Don't do anything!" And he came in with the idea of using the mortgage-based securities market, and other things, and also the financing of the computer industry, as a fund to print money electronically, as never had been printed before.
We have flooded the world today, with the greatest inflation the world has ever imagined. There is no possibility that this monetary system in its present form can exist. It's doomed, it's finished. It's gambling! The hedge funds are pure gambling. There's nothing in them. When this thing comes down, everything will come down with it.
Nuclear Energy and the Isotope Economy
Now, what's the solution? What am I doing about it?
Well, I still follow the same policy which I recommended to Reagan, and Reagan accepted, back in the beginning of the 1980s. We were working for it here in Europe; we were working for it here in Italy. We had military here in Italy who were supporting that policy. We had people in France, military in France, we had military in Germany supporting that policy. All encouraging the United States President to go into that policy, which he did. Even after the Soviets turned us down, he went back and made it public, and made the public offer.
Now that was not just a "we don't shoot you and you don't shoot us." The point was, to shift the goals of society, from military conflict goals, to economic cooperation goals. And to take and develop the kinds of systems where we could mutually eliminate the possibility of such an attack, a surprise attack, this sort of thing. And we could convert that into developing superior technologies which we'd use for other purposes as well.
Now, what's happened recently: I was in Moscow for the 80th birthday of an old friend of mine, who was a leading Soviet economist, and other economist, who was the son of the famous Soviet Ambassador to Washington, Menshikov—Stanislav Menshikov. He's a famous economist. And I used the occasion, leading into that, through my wife Helga, who is also involved in this, used the occasion to present to a Russian group, a proposal for the Bering Strait project. Since then, that proposal was accepted by that circle, and since then, since I was in Moscow, there was more discussion of it. It is my understanding that President Putin is going to present that proposal at the coming G-8 convention. It's his intention to do it; he's already sponsored it. The Russian government has issued a very well-produced pamphlet, which, in English and in Russian, has this proposal with pictures, including Helga's picture, my picture, that sort of thing. This has been accepted by certain people in the United States. Our proposal is that we proceed with it now, for a very simple reason. The world has reached the point, that we can no longer survive without a large-scale conversion to nuclear-fission power sources. The water issue alone is typical. We cannot maintain freshwater supplies for humanity on the basis required, without nuclear fission as a power source. We need the fourth-generation fission-type reactor, particular the Jülich type, or the pebble-bed high temperature gas-cooled reactor. We need that.
India is going with such a policy. They recognize it. Every other part of the world is moving in that direction, whether they say so publicly or not, because the issue is clear: Without a nuclear-fission policy, for dealing with such things as water and sanitation, you cannot deal with the problems of the planet at large. You've got 1.4 billion people in China, over 1 billion people in India. Large populations in Asia. And they have shortages of two things: potable water; and they also have a shortage of minerals, which they need for developing industry, because you cannot maintain a poor population in Asia without having an explosion. China already has internal instabilities as a result of this. India has 70% of its population as part of the same instability. Look at the conditions throughout Southeast Asia. You need this kind of development
In the long term, we need to go into what's called an isotope economy, which is, we'll be able to process the isotopes we require, at very high temperatures in effect, and thus supply humanity with the means for maintaining a growing population, with a growing technology, a growing standard of living.
Now, this also means that we're going to change the planet from a maritime planet, into a land-based planet. The significance of the proposed bridge, the Alaska [Bering Strait] bridge, which has been around for a long time, is that, if you run magnetic-levitation systems, which are superior to the rail systems, if you run that kind of system as a freight system, as well as a passenger system, if you connect Eurasia to the Americas, and you also solve the Middle East problem, and connect to Africa the same way, by building up a perspective of a long-range system of these kinds of substitutes for rail systems, we have suddenly taken the interior areas of the continents of the world—we now have made them accessible for coordinated development.
Now, high-speed rail traffic, as well as magnetic levitation, is more efficient than air; and it costs a lot less. It's more efficient than a highway. So the cheapest way of connecting various parts of the world economy together—both freight and people—is by building a high-grade magnetic-levitation system, or a transition to that through a good rail system, as a model, so that you can easily upgrade one to the other.
And with nuclear power, and with the development of thermonuclear-fusion processes, and some of the things that go with that, this is the direction we have to go. And therefore, what we needed then was the SDI, and our purpose then, was not simply to develop a better military system. It was to develop a system which was necessary for the economy, was necessary for the nations, and more valuable to the nations than the advantages of winning any war.
Shifting the World's Attention to a Higher Level
And the same thing applies today. We always have to look for the peaceful use of technology, and power, and use that as the way we approach the issues of conflict. If we have to go to war, we take it from the highest level. But we also do these things, not to win a war, nor to fight it; we do these things to prevent a war, by shifting the attention of the world to a higher level. And that's where the answer lies, essentially.
The conflict today is not really—you've got Bush coming here—the conflict is not really with the United States, and Putin has never thought so. You know, when young Bush was first inaugurated as President, one of the first guys waiting to meet him was Vladimir Putin, and Vladimir Putin came up beside him, out of the bushes, so to speak, and said, "Let's talk." And you had President W. Bush, George W., talking about his friend "Putie," in various interviews around the world.
And what Putin has done is very conscious. The inside circles inside Russia, who look at the history books, know the long relationship of friendship between the United States and Russia. And they also know, particularly, the relationship of Franklin Roosevelt and the view of Franklin Roosevelt in Soviet history, as well as in Russian history generally. That view, in Russia, is shared today in Putin's circles.
So, therefore, one of my concerns is to induce the United States to move and take up that option, and my approach is, to say, "Let's take this bridge over the Bering Strait." It's a long-term project, but the idea of taking it up as a commitment, to actually go ahead with it, and to do this in tandem with the four greatest powers on this planet, which today, are the United States, Russia, China, and India. Now, I'm not proposing a four-power government of the world. I'm proposing simply that, if these four powers, which have, combined, the maximum power in the world, agree, then other nations, such as Italy, which is looking for partners which it can live with, can easily join with that, and be a voice in a new shaping of the order of the world.
Because this financial system we're in is coming down. It is finished. There is no way this financial system in its present form can be perpetuated. The present system of the hedge funds is not an economy—it's a graveyard. It's a graveyard of nations, a graveyard of economies. It's based on looting nations' material resources. And what is then left of a nation after being looted? You might be a little bit richer in the short term, but you will have rates of inflation which are enormous. This bubble is going to pop. Therefore, on these kinds of questions we have to think about what are acceptable long-term agreements for our economies, and the welfare of the future of humanity. What are the technologies, and can we begin to discuss those agreements now, to provide, put on the table before nations, that: It comes back on this question that came out up about sovereignty. Why is sovereignty important?
People who don't understand sovereignty—and that includes most of the people who are for globalization. Globalization is a new Tower of Babel. It was a bad idea then; it's a worse idea now. Because people have forgotten, especially the Baby-Boomer generation: What is the difference between a baboon and a human being? A human being has creative powers. No beast does. And therefore, in all these solutions, it's through culture. It's through our language cultures, and associated culture, that we as a people develop the ability to develop ideas among ourselves. The result of different nations, according to their culture, in developing ideas, is not a different result; it's a different road to the result. Because a language culture draws upon the implications of the use of the language over many generations. You reach into the soul of the people for creative powers, and that should be the objective of this sort of thing.
So, you need a multi-national world, not a globalized world. We need a system of sovereign nation-states. We need a recognition of the terrible threat that we face now. We see the need of coming together, and getting some big powers together on things that seem impossible. And then, giving hope.
Look at what's happened to the Italian people. I've seen this. What's happened to them, with the destruction of the industries? What's happened with the destruction of culture and education? It's happened in all European countries. It's happened in the United States. What's happened?
The power to think creatively, the power to make and understand scientific discoveries: Classical culture is almost an unknown quality among nations that have been a repository of Classical cultures in the past centuries. We've lost it. It's the development of the human individual mind, and particularly the power of making discoveries of principle, which are an integral part of a language culture, and therefore, a nation should be based on language culture, and the nations with different language cultures, should learn to talk to each other.
We did fairly well in European civilization in past times. I think we can do it again.
Senator De Gregorio: I thank Professor LaRouche for his presence and his contribution, which gave rise to an ample debate among the Senators present here. We are pleased with this, because it means that the remarks and ideas you provided were enthusiastically received.
[*] An extended discussion between Senator Menapace and LaRouche is in EIR, June 22, 2007.