EIR LEAD EDITORIAL FOR SATURDAY JUNE 3, 2023
Seven Days in June
June 2, 2023, 2022 (EIRNS)—Yesterday, Helga Zepp-LaRouche addressed a small international gathering of co-thinkers, representing several different organizations, on the task of finding a way to rapidly change the direction of current history. While there are multiple initiatives for peace, and even for elements of a new strategic architecture, presently being organized through the world, a new element must be added for them to succeed. A “higher peace movement” is required. Immediate joint action, combining the resources of several organizations and many minds, must out-think, and therefore out-organize those that are bringing the world closer to thermonuclear ruin.
For such a “higher peace movement,” Classical principles of statecraft are required. That is the superior weapon that needs to be brought to bear, as the unexpected “unseen power” of those who truly love humanity. This was done by the Schiller Institute last fall, in the form of the “Dona Nobis Pacem” intervention. The singing, performed by people throughout the world as a simultaneous prayer and demand for peace, allowed people to hear their own voices raised in unity for the same purpose. It resonated and became part of the fabric of the thinking of those who heard it, amplified far beyond the initiators.
In contrast to the power of Classical art, we must remember that, for the most part, and increasingly so, the purpose of what is called “popular culture” is to degrade the populace. In “Politics As Art,” Lyndon LaRouche says, “The greatest crimes of political leaders, and comparable figures, are usually not their violation of custom, but their failure to violate custom in the manner specifically needed to prevent a people from plunging themselves, and their posterity alike, into some terrible calamity.” Take the case of Greek tragedians inspiring the city-state of Athens for its eventual (and successful) military confrontation with Persia. The instruction that Aeschylus (and other authors) imparted to fellow Athenians, through the composition and performance of tragedies, particularly in the decade 490-480 B.C., sought to shake that city’s citizens out of their deference to the Persian-imposed Oracle of Delphi, and the irrational whims of the Olympian gods’ ”rule of law.”
Only an independent-minded people could have defeated the most powerful military force in the world, as the Athenians—not the Spartans—did, on the plains of Marathon. They had been mass educated in self-government through a process of literally dramatic, “axiom-busting” rejection of their smallness, “littleness” as citizens. They developed, as a city, through viewing and discussing Classical tragedy consistently and over years, the concept of victory, the opposite mind-set to that of the “fatefully tragic” mind-set to which their customary subservience to the Persian and Olympian gods had otherwise condemned them. LaRouche also observed that “The chief cause of the tragedy of nations and cultures, is not that they violated custom or popular opinion, but that they continued to bow to the authority of these precedents and other habits much too long.”
It is this “Athenian” concept of Classical tragedy, lost to those who have forgotten or abandoned the Socratic dialogue method of Plato, and have never seriously confronted the meaning of the dramas of Shakespeare or Schiller, which we must engender in the people of the trans-Atlantic world. The Global South, and the nations now participating in the Belt and Road Initiative, already in large part have the necessary optimistic outlook required for humanity to prevail. The trans-Atlantic popular “death culture” that creates the precondition for the acceptance of never-ending wars can be dissipated with the efficient use of Classical principles.
In her Friday discussion, today, Zepp-LaRouche first outlined the presently unfolding tragedy: the Defender-23 maneuver, the largest in the history of NATO; the “anonymous” drones attacking apartment buildings in Moscow; the attack on the Kremlin, etc. She spoke about how Russia is convinced that the aim of the attacks is the dissolution of the Russian state. Various Russian leaders have stated that such an attack would be the one condition under which Russia has said that it would likely use nuclear weapons. Last December, President Vladimir Putin had responded to President Joe Biden reneging on his election promise, that he would give up the first-strike doctrine for the United States, and that Putin had said, that he would have to change the nuclear posture of the Russia Federation, since nothing serious happened on this front.
In contrast, it had to be said, that the peace movement has not kept pace with the war machine. One may rage against the war machine, but that does not necessarily halt the war machine, and efforts must be combined if that is what we wish to accomplish. Therefore, Zepp-LaRouche proposed that the discussants work towards a new form of organization.
We must seek to unify the peace movement internationally, and then reach out through our group to all those around the world that are prepared or inspired to act. People are being lured into an extinction war—their nations would disappear. The “War Party” has been largely successful in their strategy of divide and conquer. There are many peace initiatives, which is on the one hand good, but there is no unity. That weakness is what has to be overcome.
Zepp-LaRouche notably pointed out that the only way that we are likely to succeed, is if we can catalyze such a strong voice against the war that it cannot be ignored—but especially in the Global South. Though the war theater may be in Europe, as early as 1955, both President Sukarno and Prime Minister Nehru warned at the Bandung Conference that nuclear war won’t stop at the borders of the trans-Atlantic world. We need unity.
So, in these seven days of June remaining before the 60th anniversary celebration of President John F. Kennedy’s American University Peace Speech on June 10, we want to deploy that speech, and its rejection of tragedy. “Let us examine our attitude toward peace itself. Too many of us think it is impossible. Too many think it unreal. But that is a dangerous, defeatist belief. It leads to the conclusion that war is inevitable—that mankind is doomed—that we are gripped by forces we cannot control. We need not accept that view. Our problems are manmade—therefore, they can be solved by man. And man can be as big as he wants. No problem of human destiny is beyond human beings. Man’s reason and spirit have often solved the seemingly unsolvable—and we believe they can do it again.”
This is the statement of a “higher peace movement,” of persons and organizations divided by many things, but united for peace, as JFK was proposing with respect to the Soviet Union in 1963. We want to involve people in every nation in circulating that speech, in signing our “Urgent Appeal to the Next President of the United States” to follow JFK in his commitment to peace, and in enlisting people from at least 150 of the world’s nations in that effort. We will be heard, and we can succeed. As Kennedy remarked on another occasion, “Genius can speak at any time, and the entire world will hear it and listen ... reminding (man) that the forces that unite, are deeper than the forces that divide.”