EIR LEAD EDITORIAL FOR MONDAY AUGUST 28, 2023
Geopolitical Confrontation Must End!
Aug. 27, 2023, 2022 (EIRNS)—The expansion of the BRICS process, including most prominently the planned January 2024 expansion of the BRICS into the BRICS 11, is among the most important developments in the world today. It is willful blindness (or, often, willful deception) that prevents those in NATO nations from recognizing that a new paradigm is taking shape in the world.
The most crucial paradox to unravel today is the seeming contradiction between the rise of such new institutions as the BRICS and the decline of the predominantly trans-Atlantic “West.” The rise of China, the independence of Russia, the potential for resolving conflicts that have divided Southwest Asia: All of these are treated as a threat by the Anglo-American world, when indeed, they are opportunities to advance a better type of self-interest.
The true self-interest of the United States, of the EU nations, of NATO-land, does not lie in maintaining superiority by preventing the growth of others, like the quintessential oligarch Zeus of Aeschylus’s Prometheus trilogy. Instead, it lies in advancing the common cause of humanity, in a modern world in which military conflict truly can become a thing of the past.
Take for example the visit by U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo to China. Her visit may result in a few small changes that might be called improvements. But such measures would be akin to re-arranging the deck chairs on the Titanic, because U.S.-China relations are dominated by the fact that the Anglo-American establishment sees China’s rise as the greatest threat in the world.
Another sign of the times is the visit by U.S. envoy Molly Phee’s strip to Africa. In Abuja, Nigeria, she invited President Tinubu, who is also the rotating Chairman of ECOWAS, to a meeting with U.S. President Joe Biden on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly next month. Why? “U.S. support for ECOWAS and regional leadership in responding” to the situation in Niger is on the agenda. She is quoted as saying, “President Joe Biden is asking to meet with you on the sidelines of UNGA and you are the only African leader he has requested to meet. It is a mark of his high regard for your leadership.”
If accurate, this would reflect both the general lack of U.S. interest in the continent experiencing the highest rates of population growth and potential economic growth, and an unhealthy fixation on military affairs. The only African leader Biden wants to meet with is one whom he hopes to convince to take military action in Niger!
In contrast, consider the BRICS process.
According to figures compiled from CEIC Data and the World Bank at The Cradle, the BRICS 11 countries have a total GDP of $29.2 trillion, a total GDP (PPP) of $59.8 trillion, and a debt of only $8.9 trillion. In comparison, the G7 nations have a total GDP of $43.5 trillion, a GDP (PPP) of $48.5 trillion, and a total debt of $55.5 billion (with the U.S. and Japan having a debt-to-GDP ratio above 100%). The BRICS 11 will hold nearly half of the world’s proven oil reserves. BRICS 11 members Egypt and the U.A.E., and prospective member Bangladesh, all joined the New Development Bank in March of this year.
Who else wants to join BRICS? Algeria, Bangladesh, Bahrain, Belarus, Bolivia, Venezuela, Vietnam, Guinea, Greece, Honduras, Indonesia, Cuba, Kuwait, Morocco, Mexico, Nigeria, Syria, Tajikistan, Thailand, Tunisia, and Türkiye.
Meanwhile, the pathetic British propaganda sheet The Economist is further demonstrating its wickedness by running its regular China-is-about-to-collapse feature (the current cover reads “Xi’s Failing Model: Why He Won’t Fix China’s Economy”), perhaps in competition with the noted perennial predictor of China’s collapse, Gordon Chang.
The “West” must resolutely reject the British Empire viewpoint. Helga Zepp-LaRouche explains how in her August 20 Appeal to the Citizens of the Global North:
“However, this requires that we in the West demonstrate unequivocally that we are ready for honest cooperation. Above all, this includes giving up the concept of expanding NATO into a global NATO, and working specifically on a new international security and development architecture that takes into account the interests of all nations, including Russia, Ukraine, China and all other states. I have formulated ten principles on this topic, the aspects that such a new architecture must take into account.
“Our entire future, that of the nations of the Global South, and not least of all world peace, will depend on whether we can win enough forces in the European nations and the U.S.A. to seize the extraordinary opportunity that presents itself in the possibility of cooperation with the BRICS-Plus States. We are currently experiencing an epochal change of the kind that happens maybe once in a thousand years, and the great thing is that we can all help shape this new era through our contribution. We can help end the shameful phase of colonialism and begin a human chapter in universal history.”