EIR LEAD EDITORIAL FOR THURSDAY, JULY 22, 2021
End of an Era: Afghanistan Can Be the Last Regime Change War and Beginning of Peace Through Development
July 21, 2021 (EIRNS)—In 1979, Tony Blair, the imperial Prime Minister of the United Kingdom., who had given us the war in Iraq and the subsequent regime change wars, presented his justification for what was to come. The age of the Peace of Westphalia, said Blair, which gave birth to the concept of the sovereign nation-state, was finished. The more “civilized” nations, he proclaimed with a stiff upper lip, must no longer allow tyrants and dictators to do as they wish within their nations, but we, in our infinite wisdom, must determine when they are mistreating their citizens. We have a “responsibility to protect” those citizens, he intoned, through covert operations, such as those of the National Endowment for Democracy or its privatized version under George Soros’s Open Society, and failing that, to use our military forces under the guise of “humanitarian intervention” to bring “democracy” to the people. Witness Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and Yemen.
With the utter failure of the 20-year U.S. and NATO misadventure in Afghanistan, after similar deadly failures in Southwest Asia under the Bush and Obama regimes, that era has come to an end.
Helga Zepp-LaRouche today addressed this phase-change in history in her weekly strategic webcast for The LaRouche Organization:
“I compared it to the Fall of the Berlin Wall and the German reunification, and the end of the Soviet Union. Now one can argue that that was a much more momentous event, because it was, after all, ending 70 years of history. But in a certain sense, it’s different in scale, maybe, but not in terms of essential quality, because the end of the Soviet system was the end of a historical phase, the end of a system. And what the Afghanistan withdrawal signifies, is also the end of a system, of endless wars—the demonstration that the policy of Tony Blair which he inaugurated in Chicago in 1979, utterly failed, the idea that you have the “right to protect.” You march into other countries for regime change, color revolution, and if all of that doesn’t help, you go in militarily. That policy has failed. The NATO troops are now out, or essentially out.
“Now, what happens now? If nothing happens in order to remedy that, there is the danger that Afghanistan will again become a center of opium production—more than 80% of the opium of the world was at certain points produced there ... it can become a hub of terrorism again, so there are negative reasons why one should go in with a different perspective.
“There is a much better reason, and that is what the neighboring countries of Afghanistan are doing already. Because in the last week there were several conferences, of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization foreign ministers, and the neighboring Central Asian countries in Dushanbe and Tashkent, including representatives from India, from China, from the United States, and there was a general agreement that the only way to stabilize that region is through economic development....
“Wang Yi, the Chinese foreign minister at one of these conferences basically said that there is now the historic chance to have infrastructure integration of the entire Eurasian continent—there can be collaboration between the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, the Belt and Road Initiative, the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU), the European Union if they want to. But that all does not function if Afghanistan is continuously engulfed in civil war, in social chaos. So the development and integration of Afghanistan is in the interest of the Afghani people, it is in the interests of the neighbors, in the interest of the entire Eurasian continent.
“So I’m quite optimistic that it can happen, but the crucial question is, will the United States cooperate with Russia and China? Interesting is that the Afghanistan ambassador to China made an urgent appeal and said that Afghanistan is the one place in the world where the United States and China can cooperate. I think this is very important. This is why I’m relatively excited about this perspective to hopefully get the United States involved or encouraged that they get involved, and also the Europeans.... If there can be a collaboration between the United States, Russia, and China, then maybe this can be a bridge-building, whereby a completely different process of cooperation is put into motion, and that way, the larger confrontation can step by step be pulled back and replaced with cooperation, which I think is the only way humanity can continue to survive in this present stage of history.”