by Helga Zepp-LaRouche
The author is chairwoman of the German political party Civil Rights Movement Solidarity, BueSo.
While France has been hit by five horrendous terror attacks since the beginning of 2015, and brutal attacks have occurred in the same time frame in more than 30 countries (often more than once) in Europe, Asia, the United States, and Africa—the reality of the terrorist threat has now been experienced firsthand in Germany, with the attacks in Wuerzburg and Munich, whatever the biography or description of the perpetrators turns out to be (whether political Islamists or “self-radicalized” lone assassins). Without a doubt, the problem of international terrorism is one of the major threats to humanity as a whole.
In a situation in which a whole array of crises is coming on thick and fast—the growing war danger in Europe, Southwest Asia, and the Pacific; an attempted coup and subsequent consolidation of state power in Turkey, a NATO state; Brexit and the erosion of the European Union; and a new imminent financial crisis, to name only a few—it should be obvious that we can only solve these crises if we discard the old ways of thinking and geopolitical rancors, and if the most important states work together on an international level.
CSU parliamentarian Hans-Peter Uhl was right, in the wake of the night of horror in Munich, to call for improved, preventive measures and heightened cooperation among the relevant authorities, both domestically and abroad. But given the history and international operating mode of radical Islam, that obviously implies cooperation with Russia, the victim that has the most expertise on the networks in Chechnya and their links to the Right Sector in Ukraine and to ISIS, and which has proven, through its military intervention in Syria, to be the only country that has successfully pushed back the power of ISIS.
It is therefore urgent to take up the offer extended by President Vladimir Putin in his speech to the UN General Assembly in 2015. After pointing to the fatal consequences of the West’s policy of training allegedly “moderate” rebels to combat secular governments in the Middle East, who then defected in droves to ISIS, Putin stressed:
“In these circumstances, it is hypocritical and irresponsible to make declarations about the threat of terrorism, and at the same time turn a blind eye to the channels used to finance and support terrorists, including revenues from drug trafficking, the illegal oil trade, and the arms trade.”It is equally irresponsible to manipulate extremist groups and use them to achieve your political goals, hoping that later you’ll find a way to get rid of them or somehow eliminate them….
“What we actually propose is to be guided by common values and common interests rather than by ambitions. Relying on international law, we must join efforts to address the problem that all of us are facing, and create a genuinely broad international coalition against terrorism. Similar to the anti-Hitler coalition, it could unite a broad range of parties willing to stand firm against those who, just like the Nazis, sow evil and hatred of humankind. And of course, Muslim nations should play a key role in such a coalition, since Islamic State not only poses a direct threat to them, but also tarnishes one of the greatest world religions with its atrocities. The ideologues of these extremists make a mockery of Islam and subvert its true humanist values.” [Kremlin translation]
Especially since the newly released Chilcot Inquiry report in Great Britain spotlights how Tony Blair orchestrated the war of aggression against Iraq on the basis of conscious lies, and the disclosure of the suppressed 28 pages of the official Joint Congressional Inquiry into 9/11 has left no doubt as to the role of Saudi Arabia in financing terrorism, a “more of the same” policy is tantamount to complicity in any new terrorist attacks.
The German authorities can no longer hide behind the usual sociological sophisms. The credibility of Mr. Uhl and Interior Minister Thomas de Maziere, of the members of the Bundestag’s domestic affairs committee, and of course of Chancellor Merkel, will depend on whether they initiate an official investigation to elucidate as quickly as possible the implications of these two documents—the Chilcot Report and the 28 pages—and draw the conclusions from them. It is unacceptable, under any circumstances, to use the attacks in Wuerzburg and Munich as the excuse to build up a police state as Turkish President Erdogan is doing, and to cooperate with precisely those governments that are exposed and implicated by the Chilcot Report and the 28 pages.
The Next Financial Crisis: Italy
A dramatic change in policy is also urgently necessary with respect to another existential crisis, the financial one. The word is out everywhere that Italy is the new Greece. But unlike Greece, it doesn’t represent just two percent of the European Union’s GDP, but is the fourth largest industrial nation in Europe. Yet the European Commission, the European Central Bank (ECB), and the German Finance Ministry are pursuing the same brutal and incompetent policy which has already ruined Greece and eroded the European Union (EU). Italy’s GDP has shrunk by about 25 percent as a result of the EU’s murderous austerity policy since the 2008 financial crisis, leading to horrible consequences for the healthcare system and pensions, an increase in unemployment, the shutdown of many small and medium-sized businesses, and a dramatic rise in suicides. One result of this shrinking of the real economy by about one quarter is that the Italian banks are now sitting on 360 billion euros of non-performing loans.
The medicine that ECB head Mario Draghi, EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, the Bundesbank, and German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaueble intend to administer to the “sick man of Europe,” is poisonous. They all agree, with minimal differences, that Italian savers and investors should pay for the rescue of the sick banks, as the EU’s bail-in law prescribes, thus accepting the Cyprus model—in the event that the stress test results for the Italian banks, to be made public at the end of July, show—as expected—that these banks are undercapitalized.
In that case, Italian savers and investors would have their money expropriated, and Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, as a result, would be threatened with a revolt. He would most likely lose the upcoming referendum for constitutional reform in October and he would lose the subsequent elections. The Five Star Movement would then set in motion Italy’s exit from the euro and the European Union.
While various media, among them Die Welt, describe Italy as a “failed state,” putting it for all intents and purposes in the same category as Somalia or Iraq, the so-called EU political leadership is doing nothing—absolutely nothing—to remedy the crisis. What these soulless EU bureaucrats—such as Juncker, ECB head Draghi, and other politicians and bankers who have made their careers by passing through the revolving door between politics and the major banking houses several times—have not for one moment taken into account, is that their policies in support of the casino economy are ruining entire nations, the lives and fortunes of many millions of people.
There is a solution: The Bueso is working with many collaborators in Europe and the United States in a campaign to avert the threatened insolvency of Deutsche Bank through a return to the banking philosophy which underlay the policy of the assassinated chairman of the bank, Alfred Herrhausen. This campaign has generated a good deal of attention from the financial sector, since everyone knows that the trans-Atlantic financial system is hopelessly bankrupt. In this context, the report that Deutsche Bank is preparing for an in-house separation of its business and investment sections, is of interest.
The fact that the demand for a return to the Glass-Steagall banking separation law has been incorporated into the party platforms of both the Democratic and Republican parties—the result of many years of campaigning by the LaRouche Political Action Committee—has so far had two interesting results: It has produced screams from Wall Street, which fears Glass-Steagall more than the devil fears holy water, and it has discredited all those who constantly claimed that it couldn’t be done.
In these turbulent days there is a simple measure at hand, which will allow anyone to see whether leading politicians are championing the general welfare of the people they are supposed to represent, or whether they are lobbyists for other interests. This measure is their readiness to seize the existing solutions—that is, to accept Putin’s offer, and to return to an economic policy based on serving the general welfare. Politicians who fail to measure up should be hounded out of office for just that reason.