EIR LEAD EDITORIAL FOR SUNDAY, APRIL 25, 2021
Zepp-LaRouche: The Biggest Threat Is Not Climate Change, but Nuclear War and Indifference
April 24 , 2021 (EIRNS)—The following is translated from Helga Zepp-LaRouche’s lead article in the German weekly Neue Solidarität:
The virtual summit on climate change initiated by the Biden administration, in which more than 40 heads of state took part, was intended to increase diplomatic pressure on their states to achieve the so-called climate targets for reducing greenhouse gases even more quickly. More fundamentally, however, after the four years of Trump’s “America First” policy, it was to establish once again the global leadership role of the U.S. in a “rule-based world order,” defined by itself. Far from being able to force all participating heads of state into submission to this world order by means of a Malthusian-motivated climate panic, it revealed nonetheless how strongly the climate issue is being exploited for geopolitical purposes.
American Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said at the conference: “The climate crisis is a profoundly destabilizing force for our world. As the Arctic melts, competition for resources and influence in the region increases. Closer to the Equator, rising temperatures and more frequent and intense extreme weather events in Africa and Central America threaten millions with drought, hunger, and displacement.”
A paper published on the same day by the Pentagon’s Climate Action Team goes in the same direction, highlighting this geopolitical competition for resources. For several years now, the various strategy papers of the Pentagon have been defining the climate crisis as a strategic priority, which has such an affinity with the goals of the Malthusian lobby that it should make even the most clueless of our contemporaries suspicious.
Neither the Russian nor the Chinese government should have missed the fact that just two days earlier, the U.S. Strategic Command (Stratcom), which is responsible for the U.S. nuclear arsenal, had published the following tweet: “The spectrum of conflict today is neither linear nor predictable. We must account for the possibility of conflict leading to conditions which could very rapidly drive an adversary to consider nuclear use as their least bad option.”
Stratcom’s commander, Adm. Charles Richard, announced in February that he had instructed the Pentagon to upgrade the likelihood of nuclear war from “almost impossible” to “very real possibility.” Anyone who expected that such a momentous statement—which is not taking place in a vacuum, but in a climate of escalation, of rampant sanctions, expulsions of diplomats and military maneuvers against Russia and China—would lead to an international outcry was disappointed. While hundreds of thousands took to the streets during the medium-range missile crisis at the beginning of the 1980s, because they rightly feared the perhaps even accidental outbreak of a Third World War, people today seem to be largely numb to the danger of war.
A survey comes to mind from years ago, taken among people who lived below a dam. Those who lived a long way from the dam felt little threatened by the possibility of the dam breaking. Those who lived closer, but still some distance away, felt very threatened. But those who settled directly under the dam were amazed why anyone could suspect a danger at all.
This denial of reality, a condition which afflicts astonishingly many of the inhabitants of the Western community of values, does not apply to Russia, China, or the many countries that are exposed to the sanctions policy of the United States, Great Britain or the EU.
Given this strategic panorama, the speech of President Xi Jinping, who first addressed the summit, presented a perspective that virtually all sane people could agree on: “We must commit to green development,” said Xi. “Green mountains and rivers are gold and silver.... We have to give up development models that damage or undermine the environment, and we have to say no to short-sighted methods that aim for short-term development successes that are at the expense of the environment.”
However, these words have a completely different meaning than what the typical Western “lifestyle greens” understand. Because in China the awareness has long been established that the environmental mistakes that were imposed on China by the Western multinationals during the first phase of reform and opening policy, when it saw the creation of special zones and cheap production as the only possible avenue for overcoming underdevelopment, must not be repeated. Meanwhile, China has launched unprecedented modernization programs for its industry and transportation to remedy past environmental damage and to ensure clean water and air.
In contrast to the Greens in the West, China insists on the same rights for all developing countries and, above all, on “sustainable economic and social development worldwide.” Significant for the difference is above all Xi’s formulation: “We have to act with a sense of responsibility and uniformity, and work together for a community of life for people and nature.” Here, nature and the environment are not glorified at the expense of people, but it is about the harmony of both.
During the summit, Xi presented a six-point proposal on how such a community could be built, of which the sixth describes the principle of shared but “differentiated responsibility.” What is essentially meant by this is the claim of the developing countries to real economic development, which must not be sacrificed on the altar of the climate crisis.
The Global Times is even clearer with regard to what that means. The developed countries have completed their industrialization, so climate change is now one of their priorities. The developing countries have only just begun this process, the standard of living is still low, so for them, the right to sustenance is defined differently than it is for the developed countries. These states must be vigilant against attempts by Washington to enforce its position by force. In the most extreme case, if the world were to try to force “carbon neutrality,” the gap between developed and undeveloped countries would become permanent. The deterioration in the international climate is just as evident as the U.S. strategic intrigues to contain China. It must therefore be a matter of promoting the common interests of all humanity, rather than that of a handful of countries.
Even more explicit was the president of the Copenhagen Consensus Center Bjorn Lomborg, who warned in an article in China Daily that the promise of the rich countries to end the use of fossil fuels in 29 years, and to pass the unbearable costs on to the poor countries, could only end badly. The rich countries have developed incredibly far because of these fossil fuels, and 6 billion people now also wanted access to cheap and plentiful energy to overcome hunger, disease and poverty. However, the policy of the Paris Climate Agreement is damaging to the developing sector and would massively increase the number of poor by 2030, leading to enormous resentment against the rich countries, and would furthermore destabilize the rich countries themselves, because the social coherence in these countries would be destroyed by the decline in living standards.
Given the warnings from David Beasley, head of the World Food Program, that 270 million people are at risk of starvation this year alone, and from Cardinal Zenari that 90% of the population in Syria has fallen below the poverty line—not principally due to the effects of the pandemic—it is moral imbecility if the supporters of a global climate dictatorship want to enforce their murderous ambitions.
The horrific indifference with which not only the “lifestyle greens,” but the majority of the population, react to the already existing hunger of hundreds of millions of people, is nothing other than the implicit support for the genocide that would result from these policies. Wanting to pass the costs for a scientifically completely untenable climate policy on to the affected countries can only be explained by the fact that the conscience of these people died long ago, and has therefore become “green.”
Which is worse, indifference to the threat of nuclear war, or indifference to genocide in developing countries? That is a question that Germans must ponder if they seriously consider Mrs. Baerbock, the Green Party candidate, as an option for Chancellor.