EIR LEAD EDITORIAL FOR SATURDAY, JUNE 19, 2021
Leave the Realm of Geopolitical Confrontation
June 18, 2021 (EIRNS)—The day after the June 16 Putin-Biden Summit, which both Presidents described as constructive, came more official views of what can come next, in a positive direction. In a Moscow interview, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov called the meeting “a new start.” He said that he had been instructed to move, without pause, for follow-up. Regarding the proposal made at the Summit for strategic stability talks, “I would say that we have a chain of direct instructions from the leadership in order to avoid pauses in practical interaction with the U.S....”
In Washington, D.C., National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan held an on-the-record phone call with the media June 17, reporting back on the administration’s view of the Biden trip for all three Summits, during which discussion, Sullivan said that Biden will seek a meeting with China’s President Xi Jinping in the coming period. The White House transcript reports Sullivan elaborating, “[W]hat the President said, about there being no substitute for leader-level dialogue as a central part of why he held the summit with Putin yesterday, also applies to China and to President Xi Jinping. He will look for opportunities to engage with President Xi going forward. We don’t have any particular plans at the moment, but I would note that both leaders are likely to be at the G20 in Italy in October.... [W]e will sit down to work out the right modality for the two Presidents to engage.” He referred to two modalities—possibly by phone or by a side-meeting at an international meeting—and then, or “something else.”
Immediately following the Sullivan statement, State Department spokesman Ned Price affirmed to South China Morning Post the same message: that the administration foresees a meeting between Biden and Xi. China’s CGTN TV then broadcast this story, with international commentary.
These events, measured for their potential, not for their apparent immediate results, make the Schiller Institute international conference June 26-27, and ongoing dialogue, vitally important.
The critical element is providing the content of the policy needed—in service of all peoples and the future, and prompting discussion and motion on the means to make it happen. The driver is the urgency for collaborative action for a world health security infrastructure. This is undeniably in the common interest of all, and achievable through joint action.
Look at the snapshot status of the pandemic and famine. The Southern Hemisphere is reeling. In Africa, the third wave of COVID-19 is raging in many nations, especially in Southern Africa. The nation of South Africa has deployed the military to try to keep certain commercial functions going. There are pitifully scant vaccines anywhere. In South America, the virus is out of control in many places. This week Paraguay registered 18.9 deaths per million, compared to 2.7 in India, 2.2 in South Africa and 1.1 in the U.S. Following Paraguay in rate of death, and are Suriname, Argentina, Uruguay, Colombia, Brazil and Peru, all with conditions of silent horror.
The world food picture is worsening. The Food and Agriculture Organization’s latest estimate is that food prices this year will be 20% higher than in 2020 for imported food for “Low Income Food Deficient” nations—meaning poor nations dependent on commercial or donated food imports. This means suffering and death. The World Food Program warns that 34 million people are at the point of starvation this year. Some 9 million starved to death last year, more than the COVID-19 death toll in 2020. WFP’s David Beasley is in Southern Africa this week on the crisis. He visited WFP operations in northern Mozambique, in Cabo Delgado, a location of terrorism and mass dislocation. Close to 2 million people in the nation are dependent on food aid.
Against this backdrop, Helga Zepp-LaRouche, president of the Schiller Institute, also spoke the day after the Putin-Biden Summit, with her evaluation. Participating in an international web program, out of Trinidad and Tobago, she said,
“The meeting between President Biden and President Putin yesterday in Geneva is a hopeful step in the right direction. They reiterated the discussion between Gorbachev and Reagan at the time, ‘that a nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought.’ I was very relieved when I heard that, because if you have nuclear war, we are talking about the end of civilization. So this is a first step, but it must be expanded....
“Now, my view is, the best way which could happen, and frankly I think the only way which will succeed, is if the United States and China would join hands, especially in the development of Latin America, of the Caribbean, of Central America: There are so many projects that would uplift the lives of people in Trinidad....
“I think that we need a modern health system in every single country, in Haiti, in Mali, in every country. They need the same kind of health system that we used to have in Germany before the privatization of the health sector; like the Chinese have demonstrated in Wuhan, where they were able to contain the pandemic in two months. But that requires modern hospitals, infrastructure, clean water. There are 2 billion people in the world who have no access to clean water! Electricity.
“So I think that if the United States and China, and other countries, would join hands and say we have to defeat this pandemic and the danger of new ones, by helping to build up modern health systems in every single country, then that would be the common mission which would lift everything out of the realm of geopolitical confrontation, and serve the common aims of mankind. And that is what I really think has to happen.”