EIR LEAD EDITORIAL FOR SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 20, 2022
Conference Report: Extreme War Danger, and Hope for Resolution in Xi-Putin Declaration of New Era of Peace Through Development
Feb. 19, 2022 (EIRNS)—The Schiller Institute conference held today under the title “100 Seconds to Midnight on Doomsday Clock—We Need a New Security Architecture!” gathered leading figures online from around the world in two panels: To address, in the first panel, the mindless march to war between nuclear powers taking place over the artificially created crisis in Ukraine and, in the second panel, the hope made real for the world in the Joint Statement by the People’s Republic of China and the Russian Federation on Feb. 4 declaring a new era for mankind.
The conference began with a performance of the second movement of the Brahms Op. 100 violin sonata, performed by Norbert Brainin and Günter Ludwig in 1995, followed by prescient words from Lyndon LaRouche, speaking over 20 years ago, warning that the policies in place at that time would lead to precisely the danger of nuclear war being faced today. The first panel, “Who and What Are Driving the Rush towards World War? How close are we?” opened with a keynote by Harley Schlanger, a leading spokesman for The LaRouche Organization, asking if the world will move forward into a new era of peace through development, or descend into a new dark age and global warfare. He reviewed the failure of the United States to create a new world security architecture when the Soviet Union collapsed, falling instead into the geopolitical fantasy of the “end of history,” that the world would henceforth bow down to the Anglo-American version of liberal democracy. What ensued was a flight into wild speculation on Wall Street and the City of London, and illegal neo-colonial wars of choice by the Anglo-Americans, which together brought the Western economies to ruin and created today’s hyperinflation. However, the emergence of the Chinese economic miracle, the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), and the Russia-China cooperation on all matters of strategy and economy, has provided the core of a new world order based on peaceful cooperation of all nations in economic development. The potential of this cooperation reaching out to all of Europe sent the geopolitical lords in the City of London and Wall Street into a panic, in keeping with Sir Halford Mackinder’s warning the Empire must control the “Heartland.”
Natalia Vitrenko, the Chairwoman of the Progressive Socialist Party of Ukraine, former presidential candidate, and a long time friend and associate of the Schiller Institute, presented a devastating picture of the conditions in Ukraine, of desperate poverty, near total collapse of industry and agriculture, brought about by the 2104 coup led by self-professed Nazi organizations and militias supported by the British and Americans, who turned the nation over to the IMF and Western bankers who looted the country to the bone. Now, with the West using Ukraine as a pawn in the effort to destroy Russia, they have shipped billions of dollars of modern weapons into the country, while the economy is in free fall, with massive capital flight, the loss of access to any foreign investment or credit, and the collapse of the currency. This, Vitrenko said, is exactly the result she had warned of in 2014, while speaking on a Schiller Institute tour of Germany, France and Italy. There must be de-nazification, she concluded, and a return to Ukraine as a neutral nation.
The conference then heard from Col. Alain Corvez (ret.), a former Counselor for the French Defense and Interior Ministries, who declared that the current global crisis marked the end of American supremacy. It was the hubris of the American leaders in 1991 who chose to dictate to the world, rather than use the collapse of the East bloc to establish a just, new world order based on multipolarity. Then, breaking pledges made to Russia in return for peacefully withdrawing military forces from the former Soviet republics, the Anglo-Americans moved NATO eastward, now threatening to place their war machine on Russia’s border. Russia’s demand for security guarantees are reasonable, the Colonel argued, and should be welcomed by all nations. While European countries are officially following the U.S. lies about Russian intentions, they have different needs and interests, such that in this “big moment,” they will likely break away from the anti-Russia hysteria. NATO should be dissolved, he concluded.
Jens Jørgen Nielsen, a Danish professor and expert on Russia and the former Soviet Union, recalled the fear of nuclear war during the Cold War, and the relief when the Berlin Wall fell. But the promise of a new peaceful order was destroyed when NATO began to expand, ignoring the “indivisible security” agreed to in multiple treaties. He blamed President Bill Clinton for the first expansion, against the strong advice of leading figures. Now, the U.S. does wildly illegal things simply “because they can.”
Jim Jatras, a former U.S. diplomat and advisor to the Republican leadership in the Senate, asserted that the crisis is not really about Ukraine, but the U.S. and U.K. refusal to even consider Russia’s core demand for security guarantees. The U.S. belief that they had the right, following the collapse of the U.S.S.R., to impose their idea of “democracy, human rights and free trade” upon all nations, reminded Jatras of the “Trotskyite, Bolshevik slogan of ‘peace, progress and communism’ they wanted to impose on the world.” Eurasian integration through the Belt and Road goes against the U.S./U.K. idea that NATO had to “Keep the U.S. in, Russia out, and Germany down.”
Pakistani political economist Shakeel Ahmad Ramay then discussed Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan’s important visit to Beijing, discussing the disastrous conditions in Afghanistan, and Pakistan’s historic and current role. The U.S. objects to Pakistan’s role in the Belt and Road Initiative and the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), but they will not pull out. The BRI is an opportunity for all nations. [The complete transcript of Panel 1, including Q&A, appears in Documentation.]
The second panel, Crafting a new strategic architecture: The Russian-Chinese Feb. 4 joint agreement, the World Land-Bridge economic development perspective, began with the 3rd and 4th movements of Beethoven’s sonata for violin and piano in G Major Op. 96, also performed by Brainin and Ludwig. Two video excerpts of Lyndon LaRouche were shown, from May 4, 2001, and November 1985 was played, calling for the New Silk Road approach to building up all of Eurasia, with Russia as a central part, as a pivot to world recovery, and contrasting that to Africa, to see that the general welfare for all nations, for the common good, was “the only chance for this planet.”
Helga Zepp-LaRouche gave the keynote, noting that any honest view of the world today “from above” would see the rising economic progress in China and Asia compared to the failing Western system, which appears oblivious to the need for a new paradigm. We are on the brink of war, which can only be fully prevented by ending geopolitics, she said. She marveled at neocon Secretary of State Tony Blinken and German Green Party Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock being “joined at the hip” in their wild lies against Russia at the Munich Security Conference. The collapse of the U.S.S.R. did not mean the superiority of the Western liberal system, she said, as evidenced by the horrendous conditions of most of the developing nations. She quoted Roland Dumas, Hans-Dietrich Genscher and Ambassador Jack Matlock, who were all involved in the 1991 agreements with Russia, all asserting that the West did absolutely promise that NATO would not move an inch beyond Germany. Zepp-LaRouche described her role with her husband in the creation of the New Silk Road (BRI), and presented the historic Feb. 4 joint statement by Presidents XI Jinping and Vladimir Putin as the declaration of a new era, without geopolitics, which the U.S. and Europe must be convinced to join, rather than attempt to destroy. A new Peace of Westphalia is required, with all nations addressing the actual needs of mankind as a whole. “We are the greatest species,” she said. “Prove it! Make this the star-hour of the immortal species.”
Dr. Wang Wen, the Executive Dean of the Chongyang Institute for Financial Studies and Professor of the Silk Road School at Renmin University in Beijing, discussed the relationship between Xi and Putin, meeting 38 times over the past 9 years leading to the historic Feb. 4 Joint Declaration of a new era. This includes rapidly expanding economic cooperation while also “watching each other’s backs” in the current dangerous global climate, in which “a certain country” believes it has the right to interfere in other nations.
Alejandro Yaya, from the Argentina Civil Institute of Space Technology, described some of the results of Argentine President Alberto Fernández’s historic visits to Russia and China, where Argentina joined the BRI. The agreements include rehabilitating the nation’s rail system, with rolling stock, locomotives and cars coming from China and Russia. Russia will build a fourth nuclear power plant in Argentina, with other agreements on space cooperation, Huawei developing the country’s telecom system, and the exchange of technical expertise in both directions.
Graham Fuller, a 27-year State Department and CIA official and former vice-chair of the National Intelligence Council, ridiculed Tony Blinken’s claim, in regard to Ukraine and Russia, that there is no longer any such thing as “spheres of influence.” He reviewed America’s history, which has been entirely built on claims of spheres of influence, such that now they consider the whole world as part of its own sphere. He discussed the difficult role of small countries living near major powers, be it Russia, China, India or the U.S.. He quoted Mexican President Porfirio Díaz who said: “Poor Mexico. So far from God, and so close to the United States.” Now, these powers need to sit down together and create a better system.
Dr. Carlos Gallardo, the President of the Christian Democratic Party of Peru, which recently voted to pledge “adherence” to the Schiller Institute and the Belt and Road Initiative, presented the party’s support to the BRI by describing the historical road project of the Inca, whose territory went from present-day Colombia down to Argentina, with parts of Brazil, in the 16th century, all connected by the road system. “How could we not believe in the Belt and Road?” He displayed maps of the proposed bi-oceanic rail system proposed through cooperation with China.
The last speaker was Tony Magliano, a syndicated Catholic social justice and peace columnist, who reviewed the mass starvation taking place around the world, focused on Afghanistan, remarking that the “humanitarian aid being offered to Afghanistan by the U.S. totals about three days’ worth of the spending over the past 20 years for the bombing and destruction of the country.”
A rich, lengthy dialogue among the participants and specially invited discussants followed the panels. The conference panel videos are archived for viewing, and are being transcribed for publication in the Feb. 26 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.