EIR LEAD EDITORIAL FOR SATURDAY, MAY 15, 2021
Major Powers’ Responsibility To Ensure the Means to Life
May 14, 2021 (EIRNS)—On Sunday, May 16, a meeting on the Israeli-Palestinian strife will take place in the UN Security Council. Chaired by China this month, the Council was prevented from meeting earlier this week, or even issuing a statement, calling for a stop to the terrible bloodshed, because of the delaying tactics by the United States. Beyond the number of dead killed in bombings and violence, the suffering and death toll is mounting by the hour due to the widespread destruction of the means to life—water, power and food. On Sunday, electricity is set to shut off in Gaza, home to 2 million people, after Israeli closure of fuel shipments through border crossings. Water supplies, already low and intermittent, could stop.
This crisis region, and the worldwide impact of the prolonged pandemic and worsening famine, cry out for concerted action by major powers. There are institutional networks already in place for the tasks. The emergency situation makes dramatically clear the need for a meeting of the leaders of the Permanent Five members of the UN Security Council (U.S., Russia, China, Britain, and France) as soon as possible, as proposed by Russian President Vladimir Putin, beginning in Jerusalem on Jan. 23, 2020.
Putin and UN Director General Antonio Guterres met yesterday (online) calling for an end to the fighting between Israel and the Palestinians, and for action to “ensure the safety of the civilian population,” as the Kremlin stated. Guterres specifically pledged during his Moscow visit that the UN stands “fully ready” to resume the work of the Middle East Quartet—Russia, the United States, the UN and the European Union—to halt the violence.
The U.S. opposition to a peace intervention is a continuation of the long-standing British foreign policy playbook of stoking permanent tensions—insane in the nuclear era. In particular, the U.S. foreign policy to impose economic sanctions throughout this region, and in so many other places, deliberately destroys the means to life for millions of people. In the case of Syria, for example, the direct and indirect effects of U.S. sanctions prevent the return of Syrians to their homes. A new report states, “As of today, 2,249,050 of Syrian citizens have returned to the places of their chosen residence,” but millions more—especially as refugees in neighboring countries, cannot do so, and are suffering greatly. They lack food, safe water, medicines, building materials and so on. “All calls to reduce the cruel sanctions have so far been cynically ignored.” (May 13, 2021 “Statement by the Joint Coordination Committees of the Russian Federation and the Syrian Arab Republic on the problems of the repatriation of the Syrian refugees and IDPs.”)
The cooperation of major powers for immediate intervention for ceasefire in the Trans-Jordan, involves at the same time, emergency provision of humanitarian aid of water, power and medicine, and commitment to development. There are economic programs already on the agenda for the region. At the Schiller Institute’s 2020-2021 online international conferences, for example, “Project Phoenix” for Syria, and “Project Felix” for Yemen, and other projects were presented and discussed. The “Oasis Plan” perspective—presented decades ago by economist-statesman Lyndon H. LaRouche, Jr.—calls for full-scale economic development throughout the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), consistent with many specific projects since, for example, the Russian-Egyptian nuclear project now underway in El Dabaa.
In March this year, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi visited six Southwest Asian countries, presenting a five-point initiative for regional security, involving economic development, in connection with the Belt and Road Initiative. He expressly said that China, when assuming its chairmanship of the UN Security Council for the month of May, would encourage the UNSC to fully deliberate on the question of Palestine, to affirm the two-state solution. Now that pledge has come to be a task of utmost urgency for the whole world.
Let us make broad use of the dialogue at the May 8 Schiller Institute conference, on “The Moral Collapse of the Trans-Atlantic World Cries Out for a New Paradigm.” Presentations are archived and individually accessible.