This article appears in the April 15, 2022 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.
Sixty-Five Nations Demand New International Architecture at
April 9 Schiller Institute Conference
April 10—The Schiller Institute’s April 9 international (virtual) conference, titled, “Toward a New International Security and Development Architecture for All Nations,” was an extraordinary demonstration of the cooperation among nations and cultures required to address the current threats to civilization, perhaps the greatest in all time. Political and institutional leaders on the panels came from five continents—the Americas, Europe, Africa and Asia—with representation from China, India and Russia, along with the United States, including by the Ambassador of the Russian Federation to the United States, to address the “perfect storm” facing mankind—the military and economic confrontation of nuclear powers, the hyper-inflationary collapse of the dollar-based financial system, a continuing pandemic and famine, and a cultural decline into a new dark age.
Despite differences on particular issues, all speakers concurred that only a total systemic change, a new moral framework of the sort represented by the 1648 Peace of Westphalia, can both reverse the collapse, and begin the necessary process to create a new era of global peace through development.
Advance registration to the conference reached nearly 2,000, with at least 65 nations represented, and multi-thousands in the viewing audience real-time. Simultaneous translation was done in English, French, German, Spanish, and Italian. The proceedings were immediately posted and are available .
The four panels of the day-long conference were organized with a plenary session first, addressing the strategic crisis and new directions, followed by three panels—Economy, Security, and Development. These panels presented many different conceptual and concrete points, ranging from the necessity for disarmament, for an economic mobilization for health care and food production, to the imperative of nuclear power. There was a situation report on Afghanistan. Discussion followed each of the four sessions, including questions from the international audience.
Panel 1: Plenary—History, Truth, and Humanity
Conference convener Helga Zepp-LaRouche, founder of the Schiller Institute, opened the plenary session, after a short video was shown of her late husband, Lyndon LaRouche, who starkly stated that “the lack of hope is a prison” which makes the “world a frightening stranger.” Then followed Ambassador Antonov, four more speakers, and the panel discussion, moderated by Dennis Speed of the Schiller Institute.
Zepp-LaRouche, speaking on the topic, “The Need for a New Paradigm,” underscored that the current danger of nuclear war did not begin with the Feb. 24 Russian military operation in Ukraine, but when President Nixon broke the fixed exchange-rate of the Bretton Woods system in 1971, unleashing unrestrained speculation by the Western banking system, and casino economics, in opposition to development. The current war danger was further provoked when the collapse of the Soviet Union in the 1990s was not met by scrapping the division between East and West through cooperative development, as was proposed in detail by the Schiller Institute, but instead by the expansion of NATO and the “shock therapy” destruction of the Russian economy.
The unipolar world demanded by Britain and the U.S. has caused poverty globally, to the point that now a billion people are facing starvation, which is a moral failure of civilization. The illegal and evil sanctions regime is driving Russia, China, India, and others to plan a new currency system, which is needed, she said, but we must work to get the U.S. and Europe to end their futile defense of their bankrupt financial institutions and join the new system based on peace through development. She added that a new Renaissance depends on replacing hatred and prejudice with love, “the most precious good in the universe.”
Anatoly Antonov, Russian Federation Ambassador to the United States, spoke on the theme, “Prospects for Building a New International Security Architecture.” He addressed the truth about the Russian role in the world today and began by expressing gratitude for the Schiller Institute conference offering the opportunity for discussion in the midst of near-total breakdown in U.S.-Russia relations. He said the universal peace and development promoted by the UN Charter after World War II has been systemically destroyed by the Cold War, the demonization of Russia as an “evil empire,” and the arbitrary creation by the supposed “winners” of the Cold War of a “rules-based order” to replace international law. The multiple phases of NATO expansion, ignoring the constant protest of the U.S.S.R. and then Russia, led to Russia issuing two treaty proposals in December 2021, for indivisible security agreements for all countries and neutrality for Ukraine, but these were totally ignored by the U.S. and NATO. Russians will never forget the 27 million killed in the Great Patriotic War with Nazi Germany. It is intolerable to see the mass armaments being deployed on Russian borders today, and the open Western support for neo-Nazis in Ukraine.
Ambassador Antonov also took note of the cooperation between the U.S. and the U.S.S.R. in defeating the scourge of Nazism in World War II and pledged to work with the Schiller Institute to restore that kind of cooperation today, to meet the global challenges facing mankind.
The following speaker, Sam Pitroda, called for replacing the current security order, which he summarily described as one based on “command and control,” with one based on cooperation. Pitroda, a telecommunication engineer, served as an advisor to Indian Prime Ministers Rajiv Gandhi and Manmohan Singh, and addressed the conference from Chicago. He denounced the “power and profit” motivation that is pervasive today, calling for instead meeting the needs of “people and planet.”
A presentation titled, “The African Perspective” was given by Jay Naidoo, formerly a Cabinet Minister in Nelson Mandela’s government in South Africa, and a freedom fighter against apartheid. He spoke out strongly against any powers trying to be global policemen. He noted that Mandela, when finally released from 27 years in prison in South Africa, said that if he had allowed vengeance in his heart, he would still be a prisoner. A Peace of Westphalia approach to the current crisis requires that we ask ourselves: “Who has been excluded from the table?” We need a “new Bandung Conference” to end the current forms of colonial control, and a “new Non-Aligned Movement” to end the East vs. West divisions.
From China, Chen Xiaohan, of the People’s Association for Peace and Disarmament, presented a passionate call for Xi Jinping’s notion of a “community with a shared future for mankind.” She quoted the Chinese saying, “A public spirit will rule all under Heaven when the Great Way [Da Dao] prevails.”
From Italy, Alessia Ruggeri, spokeswoman of the Comitato per la Repubblica, and a trade unionist, pointed to the hypocrisy of Western powers calling for peace while fueling the flames of war with massive arms deliveries to Ukraine. She described the economic collapse of factories and families in Italy while the Italian national budget increases military spending. “For a Europe of the Fatherlands with the Peace of Westphalia,” was her topic, which demands all of us fighting to be friends of both Russia and the United States.
Panel 2: Economy
The opening for the Economy Panel was given by Dennis Small, Ibero-American Editor for the Executive Intelligence Review, who was the lead author of a pre-conference policy proposal by the Schiller Institute produced as a discussion , under the title, “The LaRouche Plan for a New International Economic Architecture.” The other five speakers included economists, business, union and media experts from the United States, China, India, and Colombia, moderated by Harley Schlanger of the Schiller Institute.
Small set the focus of the panel on the fact that we face the imperative of preventing the death by starvation of a billion people in the next year. We must stop the economic devolution. He emphasized the potential for change. He presented striking dimensions of the economic power represented by China, Russia, and India—the “Strategic Triangle” countries, as they were called by former Russian Prime Minister Yevgeny Primakov. These nations combined have 38% of the world’s population, produce 42% of its wheat, and 66% of its steel. But the world needs an agreement on fixed exchange rates among nations and a barrier of protective capital and exchange controls. Above all—he quoted Lyndon LaRouche directly on this as well as citing Alexander Hamilton—a new monetary agreement rests on the intention to jointly create credit and direct it to higher physical economic productivity in the near-term and generations-long future.
This was strongly reinforced by the presentation of Justin Yifu Lin, formerly World Bank chief economist. His topic was, “China’s BRI: The Rational and Likely Impacts.” He explained that China has long understood that it was obliged as a major economic power to contribute to world development and intended to do so through the existing—dollar system—international institutions, the IMF, World Bank, and so forth. But these, over decades, have failed to move any significant number of low-income nations to medium-income, or medium-income nations to high-income status. According to the Chinese proverb, “If you want to become rich, first build the roads,” China developed infrastructure projects and the grand Belt and Road Initiative to build them in the developing countries. Lin said the key “sustainable development goal” is to “deliver decent jobs to the people,” and this requires good infrastructure above all.
Chinese-American businessman George Koo argued that the dollar-reserve system is in fact moribund, because “the ‘Biden’ sanctions spell the death of the dollar”; the full faith and credit of the United States has been put into doubt. Only a small fraction of nations in the world joined these sanctions, and even before the Ukraine war there was movement away from the dollar as a reserve; now “Biden’s folly” will collapse NATO economies. Thus, as Koo’s presentation title stated, “U.S. Sanctions on Russia and China Are Suicide for the Dollar.”
Two leaders of one of Colombia’s national trade unions, CTU USCTRAB, spoke on the panel on the topic, “South America and the New Development Architecture.” Pedro Rubio described how with the infrastructure of the Belt and Road Initiative or the World Land-Bridge coming into South America, and modern agricultural technologies applied, Colombia could feed 75-80 million people, or twice its own population of 49 million. Its neighbor Venezuela could feed twice its 22 million people. Rubio’s colleague Fraydique Gaitán, the president of the labor confederation, spoke on the necessity of keeping man at the center of all economic considerations,
Saeed Naqvi, an Indian journalist who has traveled to and reported from 110 countries, addressed the imperative for getting out the truth. He described seeing how the media over decades have become more and more polarized and untruthful. Pointing to the endless wars of the last 40 or more years, he quoted Aeschylos “When war breaks out, truth is the first casualty.”
Panel 3: Security
The question of what concept of security will secure a durable peace, was addressed by a Frenchman, an African, and two Americans on the third panel, moderated by Harley Schlanger.
Jacques Cheminade, President of France’s Solidarité et Progrès party, titled his presentation, “The Peace of Westphalia To Escape the Thucydides Trap,” and he developed the idea that the concept of the 1648 agreement is urgent today in his presentation. He gave details of its core principles, describing how the Westphalian peace was achieved by a change in the thinking of the time, applying agapē—love expressed as creative, redemptive goodwill towards all men—to create the required higher order of relations between states and human beings. It would be a deadly mistake to dismiss these principles based on love as utopian, he warned; they are the path to peace. They are the antithesis of geopolitics.
Diogène Senny, president of the Pan-African League—UMOJA, raised the fragmentation, looting, chaos and wars imposed on Africa through more than two centuries of Western imperialist geopolitics dividing the continent into zones of influence and “vital spaces.” In his presentation, “What Africa Expects of the World,” he argued for the creation of the United States of Africa by new generations of African youth, to allow the continent to liberate itself from geopolitics and help bring about a multilateral, non-aligned world order and an African Renaissance. The African continent will participate in bringing about a new global order in which the right of people to energy, food and water is secured.
Caleb Maupin, the young American founder of the Center for Political Innovation, argued that if the majority of American families suffering in economic misery were allowed to see what is being accomplished in Asia, the building of high-speed railroads and projects everywhere, those Americans would demand the U.S. cooperate with Russia and China on constructing such projects everywhere! He argued that Americans (and others) should be unified, not on the basis of being “right” or “left,” but on what people are for, and the economic programs they offer. He added the point that people should read the writings of Lyndon LaRouche, a great “visionary” and source of inspiration who should be exonerated.
Mike Callicrate, Kansas cattleman and long-time food policy advocate, took on the food crisis created by a world system characterized by cartels and ever-tighter concentration of wealth, which is ruining farmers, immigrant laborers mistreated in the cartel processing plants, and consumers alike. He advocated the principles of economics shown in the programs of Abraham Lincoln, and his adviser Henry Carey. “The Cartel Era Is Over—More Sovereign Farmers, Food for All—Double World Food Production,” was his message.
Panel 4: Development
The final panel of the conference, focused on urgent necessity of development for all nations on Earth, was addressed by four speakers from Africa, Afghanistan, and the U.S., as well as Zepp-LaRouche from Germany, and moderated by Jason Ross, science liaison for the Schiller Institute.
Dennis Speed, a long-time leader of the LaRouche movement, recounted the 2020 founding of the Committee for the Coincidence of Opposites by Helga Zepp-LaRouche and Joycelyn Elders, former Surgeon General of the United States, on the principle that there must be adequate health care for everyone, without which the development of humanity is compromised. The concept is “Bio-defense”—referring to sufficiency of water, power, medical care, sanitation, nutrition, etc.—as elaborated by Lyndon LaRouche. Speed referenced the role of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s 1968 Poor People’s Campaign, when Dr. King reminded everyone to care for the “least of these” as they would for the Almighty.
Helga Zepp-LaRouche explained her initiative from October, 2021, “Operation Ibn Sina,” which she launched in response to the genocidal destruction of Afghanistan after August 2021, when U.S. and NATO troops pulled out, knowingly cutting off the funds required for Afghanistan’s very existence. There were even new sanctions imposed. Beyond that, the U.S. and NATO allied powers seized $9 billion in Afghan foreign currency assets deposited in U.S. Federal Reserve and other bank accounts internationally. As a result, 23 million Afghanis are in danger of starvation and 98% are “food insecure.” The beloved figure of Ibn Sina (980-1037), the great physician and philosopher from the Afghanistan region, is a rallying point of hope and action.
She was joined by Daud Azimi, of the Peace National Front of Afghanistan, who gave a report titled, “Afghanistan: Today’s Urgent Economic and Political Imperatives,” on the terrible difficulties in the country. There are various different ethnic groupings, some from adjoining countries, that are in conflict, when cooperation is sorely needed. The acting Taliban government has few resources and is not recognized by other governments, so the situation remains very difficult.
The necessity for nuclear power was strongly put forward by Princy Mthombeni, a communication specialist from South Africa and founder of Africa4Nuclear, who spoke on, “Nuclear Technology for Africa’s Agenda for Sustainable Development.” She gave a passionate presentation on her dedication to bringing all of Africa into the nuclear age, meaning modern, abundant nuclear energy, not war. She described her own childhood in South Africa, with no electricity and primitive conditions.
Today, even South Africa, which has had a working nuclear plant for almost 40 years, is desperately short of energy, and, therefore, of everything. She explained that this is not a natural, but a man-made situation, and must change, for the 1.5 billion Africans today, and billions more to come. She gave a status report on new nuclear power interests and commitments in Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Zambia, Niger, and South Africa. South Africa is planning on building more nuclear power plants.
Helga Zepp-LaRouche concluded the conference directly addressing the building of a world movement, starting from the knowledge that “we absolutely cannot have a nuclear war.” Then, we must expand on what it means to peacefully develop the resources we need for all the people, all developing to be creative contributors to the future. She pointed to Friedrich Schiller’s , “What Is, and To What End Do We Study Universal History.” In this, he differentiates thinking, philosophical minds, from the mass of “bread-fed scholars,” who only study for what they can get and are no longer willing to learn. Such habits create dangerous reactionaries. Truth seeking people, scientists and artists, may not be perfect, but are committed to honesty, and with that we can succeed.