EIR LEAD EDITORIAL FOR FRIDAY, AUGUST 20 , 2021
At the Crossroads: Chaos or Growth?
Aug. 19 , 2021 (EIRNS)—Afghanistan can become stable, and its enormous potential for growth can be leveraged to the benefit of Afghans and the world at large, through helping to shape a new paradigm on this planet.
But even after two decades of U.S.-led warfare, attempts to destabilize the nation and region continue. The U.S. government has frozen the nearly $9.5 billion in assets of the Afghan central bank and halted shipments of cash to the nation. The International Monetary Fund has suspended Afghanistan’s access to IMF resources, including $440 million worth of Special Drawing Rights reserves. A cash shortage is developing in Afghanistan, where it is used for most purchases. Germany has announced a halt to all financial aid to the country, which will affect ongoing infrastructure projects. Facebook-owned WhatsApp has shut down a Taliban help hotline, as well as other Taliban-linked channels, in a decision attacked by humanitarian aid workers as “absurd.”
Are these decisions temporary, due to uncertainty of who runs the country? Or are they being used to foster ongoing chaos in a nation already suffering decades of warfare, a nation lying at a strategic crossroads—bordering or closely concerning Iran, China, Pakistan, Russia, and three of the Central Asian republics? As has been the case for over a century, the British game of geopolitics seeks to ensure that there is no world rival to their dominance, exerted today through the “special relationship” with the United States. A new “Northern Alliance” has announced its emergence in Afghanistan, seeking Western military support. What will it receive?
The Belt and Road Initiative, which is overturning the world’s economic and strategic chessboard through a paradigm of infrastructure development and productivity growth, achieving, at China’s initiative, a policy that parallels the World Land-Bridge concept developed by Lyndon LaRouche, Helga Zepp-LaRouche, and their collaborators. Into this dynamic Afghanistan can be integrated, with results that would be stunning in terms of how rapidly they could transform the region, which can hardly be said to have benefitted significantly from the over $1 trillion spent on military adventures there.
The antidote to chaos—in addition to identifying its origin—is growth!
This Saturday, the Schiller Institute, founded by Helga Zepp-LaRouche, will convene an urgent international seminar to pursue the solution of peace through development. The seminar will continue the prescient discussion held by the Schiller Institute on July 31, with many of the same panelists, as well as new ones.
Zepp-LaRouche explained in her weekly strategic webcast “Afghanistan–Opportunity for a New Epoch” on Aug. 17:
“I do not agree with the hysteria of the Western media that this is the end of the world. ... I think it is, on the contrary, the real chance to integrate Afghanistan into a regional economic development perspective, which is basically defined by the Belt and Road Initiative of China. There is a very clear agreement of Russia and China to cooperate in dealing with this situation. The interest of the Central Asian republics is to make sure there is stability and economic development; and there is the possibility to extend the CPEC, the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, into Afghanistan, into Central Asia. So, I think it’s a real opportunity, but it does require a complete change in approach.”
Expressing her view of the proper role of the United States, Zepp-LaRouche said,
“John Quincy Adams said that the United States should have alliances of perfectly sovereign republics, and this is now the moment to really do that. The idea is to not oppose China linking Afghanistan into the Belt and Road Initiative, but rather see it as an opportunity to cooperate, and stop this geopolitical confrontation which can only lead to catastrophe. ... That’s the kind of discussion which we have to catalyze.”
The event will be this Saturday, Aug. 21, at 12:00 noon EDT (18:00 CEST), available the Schiller Institute website, or on the Schiller Institute YouTube channel.