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Australian Conference Brings Together Advocates for BRICS, World Land-Bridge, as Pathway to Peace

April 11, 2015 (EIRNS)—As the deadline loomed for countries to apply to be founding members of the China-initiated Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), the Citizens Electoral Council (CEC) of Australia on March 28-29 hosted an international conference in Melbourne, to promote support for the expanding process of the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa), in that country.

The conference was keynoted by Schiller Institute founder Helga Zepp-LaRouche, who gave a strategic overview by live video from the United States, and also featured participation by speakers from two of the BRICS countries, Russia and South Africa. Another highlight, of special importance in this Commonwealth country, was the showing of three videos, recorded expressly for the conference, with prominent figures from the United Kingdom, who expressed their support for the BRICS, and called for an end to the dangerous confrontation policy against Russia.

On the question of the war danger, the conference was stunned by a video presentation from Ukraine, given by Dr. Natalia Vitrenko, leader of the Progressive Socialist Party of that country, who described the process of the Nazi coup in her country, and the economic devastation now underway.

Below, we briefly describe the presentations by the BRICS countries’ representatives, and the British political figures. The full conference video, and transcripts of the speeches, are featured on the CEC website, www.cecaust.com.au.

The Russian View of the BRICS

The official Russian perspective on the BRICS came from Prof. Georgy Toloraya, executive director of the Russian National Committee for BRICS Research, and a senior diplomat, who had previously served as Russian consul-general in Sydney, Australia. Prof. Toloraya directly countered the widespread ignorance, scepticism, or hostility he had found vis-a-vis the BRICS, typified by a diplomat who, laughably, told him that BRICS was “just a photo opportunity for President Putin not to feel that he is alone, when he is in Brisbane or somewhere.”

In a detailed presentation, which covered a number of the 25 tracks of cooperation ongoing among the BRICS nations, Prof. Toloraya emphasized that BRICS is

“a fully political project, a project of the political elites of the BRICS countries—newly emerging powers—to defend their joint interests in this changing world, by promoting reforms and promoting change in the glboal economic architecture, as well as, eventually, in the world order.” BRICS is an “inter-civilizational union,”

he said, “not a zero-plus game,” and is striving to

“solicit western cooperation on changing the world order in a way that it can be just, for everybody—for all the members of the world community, not just a few rich countries.”

Also presenting a Russian view of BRICS was Dr. Alexey Muraviev of Curtin University in Western Australia. He reviewed the progress of the BRICS from the standpoint of Russia’s security concerns, and noted that the formation is a partial realization of the Moscow-Beijing-Delhi strategic triangle concept, which former Russian Prime Minister Yevgeni Primakov first put forward in 1998.

Both the official Russian news service TASS, and the website of the Russian National Committee for BRICS Research posted reports on the Russian participation in the conference.

U.K. Support for BRICS and Glass-Steagall

Three political figures in the United Kingdom—Labour Party Member of Parliament and former cabinet minister Michael Meacher; Labour MP Jeremy Corbyn; and Conservative Party activist and director of the anti-EU Bruges Group Robert Oulds—addressed the conference by video.

CEC Executive Member Gabrielle Peut, who had done the video interviews in London, introduced the presentations, noting the credentials of the speakers, and the fact that they show support for matters of principle such as Glass-Steagall, cooperation with the BRICS, and stopping World War III, across the political spectrum.

“Mr. Meacher is one of the British Labour Party figures (from a grouping in the UK that is kindred to ’Old Labor’ here in Australia), who fought against the ’liberal imperialism’ policies of Tony Blair and in 2007 personally challenged Blair’s successor, Gordon Brown, for leadership of the Labour Party,”

she said.

“Mr. Corbyn, also a member of the House of Commons for several decades, is especially famous for opposing Blair on launching the Iraq War.”

Robert Oulds’ Bruges Group was founded in 1989 to counter the European Union’s dictatorial thrust, but has also released a documentary film (in 2014) against the expansion of NATO up to Russia’s borders.

All three British political leaders endorsed Glass-Steagall banking separation in their addresses; Meacher and Oulds have also signed the Schiller Institute petition “The U.S. and Europe Must Have the Courage to Reject Geopolitics and Collaborate with the BRICS.”

Development Versus War

Ten other presentations at this conference filled out the strategic picture in the global conflict between the outlook of the BRICS, toward global development, versus that of those in Washington and London seeking war confrontation with Russia and China. We highlight two which had special impact.

On the scene to represent Africa was Ramasimong Phillip Tsokolibane, from the LaRouche movement in South Africa. Tsokolibane gave the audience a sensuous picture of the poverty in his nation, and stressed that the BRICS is seen in South Africa as a way to finally achieve real progress and dignity.

Dr. Natalia Vitrenko’s video address not only vividly described the horrors being deliberately inflicted on her nation, but concluded with a statement of hope that, with the progress of the BRICS process,

“this nightmare in Ukraine can be stopped, and that Ukraine will be able to use its remendous potential, its intellectual, industrial and scientific capabilities. They still exist.”