By Tony Papert
President Trump’s Feb. 10-11 summit with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe offers the United States the opportunity to join with the great new Eurasian-centered system of cooperation of the 21st Century—a new system of great nations which includes Japan, China, and Russia, plus the more than 70 other nations, with 4.4 billion total population, all of which have joined China’s “Belt and Road Initiative” (BRI) of worldwide development corridors.
Abe has prepared a contingency package for this upcoming summit, which includes Japanese hi-tech investment in the United States to create hundreds of thousands of good jobs. Japanese media report that Prime Minister Abe has prepared a plan which includes large-scale investment in high-speed rail in Texas and California, along with other infrastructural investment, as well as mutual cooperation towards advanced nuclear power, space technology, and other breakthrough technologies.
Japan’s development of this package for Washington must be understood as a spinoff of the revolutionary agreements being made between Japan and Russia over recent months. The two countries have been negotiating a peace agreement; they have officially been at war with each other for over 70 years. But these “peace negotiations” are unique in form: they would never have been possible outside the context of the new, Eurasia-centered agreement among nations—of which most Americans are still completely unaware.
The Prime Minister first met with Putin in Sochi, Russia, in May, 2016, against the direct behest of then President Obama, insisting on a dialogue with Putin in the new Eurasian context. When Prime Minister Abe met President Putin again in Vladivostok, on Russia’s Pacific coast later in September, he proposed eight points of economic cooperation, which included major Japanese investment to help develop the Russian Far East (or eastern Siberia).
When Putin returned the visit in December, the eight points were reaffirmed and elaborated. Additionally, they agreed to joint economic development of the territory disputed between them, the Kuril Islands. Final resolution of this sovereignty dispute will follow from the deepened trust as a result of this cooperation. When President Putin proposed this uniquely 21st-century path of negotiations with Japan, he had in mind Chinese President Xi Jinping’s 2013 launching of the Belt and Road Initiative, a revolutionary vision of infrastructural development corridors linking all of Eurasia, spreading out into the Middle East and Africa, and, via a Bering Strait tunnel, into northeast Asia and to both of the American continents as well.
As we have reported, the Belt and Road initiative is the outgrowth of policy-proposals which Lyndon and Helga LaRouche have continuously fought for since 1988, and as a system of development, since the early 1970s.
The nations of Eurasia, led by Russia, China, and now Japan, are saying to the United States, “We’ve opened up a new way to live and collaborate. Will you accept it and join it?” Clearly Japan, as a long term U.S. ally, can now play a unique bridge towards the development of a new international system with the cornerstone being the tripart relationship of Russia, China, and the United States.
The Bering Strait Bridge, which crosses the 54 mile gap between Alaska and the far east of Russia, is a key part to accessing the significantly untapped northern Pacific Basin areas. The nations of this region, i.e. U.S.A, Russia, Canada, China, Japan, and the Koreas, are located in an area with a large percentage of the world’s untapped natural resources, and have some of the most advanced technologies in fusion research, space exploration, nuclear power, and high-speed rail, and are now in state of potential collaboration. With this, and much more at stake, the Trump-Abe summit itself becomes a potential bridge between the U.S. and the growing Eurasian world of the greatest economic consequence.
Lyndon LaRouche was recently asked about this potential. “President Trump will not be a problem here,” LaRouche told associates on Feb. 6. Rather, U.S. adherence to the new agreement among the nations will be the way in which the new President can fulfill his campaign promise that no American who wants to work will be unable to find a job.
“We have only a short period in which to consolidate this,” LaRouche said. “We have a solid group of leaders who firmly agree on principles of action; they must be consolidated as a unity. We’ve got a clean job, and it must remain that. What could ruin it, is if some third party were allowed barge in and try to impose their own, different principles.
“The initial leading forces have selected themselves. Others who want to enter must qualify themselves; they can’t be allowed to just walk on in. We have to make that decision.”
Such potentials for change regarding the relations of the world’s major nations are rare moments in world history. The LaRouche vision for the world landbridge has been in the making since the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989.
Now, President Trump has an opportunity to shape world history, and bring to bare a new and better world economic system. There is nothing of greater importance for the U.S. or the world.
Helga Zepp-LaRouche’s keynote address to the Schiller Institute conference in Manhattan on Feb. 4, 2017. Watch the full conference, including Q & A, here.
Ladies and gentleman, I’m very happy to be able to address you even if it is only electronically, but I am happy to be with you. Because this is very much a defining moment in history where the chances to build a completely new paradigm in the world is within reach and could be a reality in a very short period of time.
That may be difficult to believe if you look at the world as it is right now, which is clearly in the biggest uproar I have experienced maybe in my lifetime. The election of President Trump in the United States has caused violent reactions in the United States, in Europe, and I have not ever seen that an American President who just got democratically elected was met with such a fierce opposition. Therefore, I think it is important to situate this election in the broader context because the election of President Trump was not the first such uproar, really, the first one was last June: The Brexit vote of the British people, the decision to leave the EU, already caused a shock. Then you had the election of Trump, and then very shortly after that you had a referendum in Italy deciding on the change of the Constitution where 60% of the Italians voted “no” against the policies of the EU. You have to see Brexit, Trump vote, and the no in the referendum in one line.
The Foreign Minister of Germany, Mr. Steinmeier, characterized the election of Trump as the end of the order of the 20th century. Obviously, that is what is going on because you have, indeed, the common denominator between all these revolutionary changes is the fact that the neo-liberal world order, at least of the 26 years, after the collapse of the Soviet Union, indeed has ended and it will never come back.
You have even the more extreme reaction of Mr. [donald] Tusk, who is the present President of the European Council, who just wrote a letter to the 27 remaining heads of state of the EU, where he said that the Trump administration represents the same threat to Europe like the newly “assertive China,” an “aggressive” Russia, and “wars, terror, and anarchy in the Middle East and Africa.”
Even if you discount the fact that Mr. Tusk is Polish and they have sometimes peculiar views these days, but to put Trump on the same level like ISIS? Well, it was very clear from Day One, the representatives of the collapsed unipolar world did not accept Trump as a President. Already in the foreground of the election, you had the hand of MI6 very clearly in the fake dossier of MI6 agent Christopher Steele, which basically tried to argue that Trump won the election only because Putin hacked into the emails of the Democratic Party and that therefore Putin stole the election from Hillary Clinton, a ridiculous view, which is still to the present day proclaimed by Hillary Clinton and by many of the Democrats.
The characterization of this demonstration against Trump as a “color revolution,” which was my first view on the matter, but also President Putin gave it the same name. Now, if you look at what happened with the color revolution, you had the same characteristics in the Orange Revolution in Ukraine in 2004 and the so-called Rose Revolution in Georgia; this was the same kind of process in the Arab Spring; in the attempted but failed White Revolution against Russia; in the Yellow Revolution with the yellow umbrellas in Hong Kong, which did not go very far. And both the governments of Russia and China characterized these efforts of color revolution as a complete form of war. Putin basically called it “a Maidan” against Trump, and that is what it is: It is by the same people, the same political apparatus, and for the same motives.
To understand what is going on, in my view, one has to consider the entire history of the United States, because the British Empire at the time of the American Revolution, never accepted their most important colony, America, would become independent, and they tried to reverse that, first, in military way with the War of 1812. They tried the same thing with the Civil War, where the British Empire was allied with the Confederacy against Lincoln, and after that, they realized it would not be possible to militarily reverse the independence of the United States. So, they changed tactics and they from that point on said, “OK, if we can convince the American establishment to rule the world as an empire based on the British model, then we have it.” And they succeeded to a very large extent to accomplish that. This was the basis of the American policy since Teddy Roosevelt, with very short interruptions of Franklin D. Roosevelt, and to a certain extent, John F. Kennedy.
With the collapse of the Soviet Union, the neo-cons saw their moment and that of the British to establish this principle of an unipolar world where basically they would eliminate every government which would not submit to this unipolar world through color revolutions, through regime change, through wars based on lies, as it was in the case of Iraq before Afghanistan, Libya, and they tried the same thing in Syria.
If you take the word or the concept “globalization,” as just being another word for this Anglo-American Empire, a system where the profit of the few is what counts; the system where the rich became unbelievably rich, where the poor became poorer, the middle class was vanishing, well, this left a lot of people who felt left out, the so-called “deplorables,” as Hillary Clinton called them. So, people had this tremendous sense of injustice caused by the EU and that was the reason for the Brexit; not just the refugees, but the general feeling that the EU bureaucracy is not representing the interests of the people. This was the case clearly with the rejection of Hillary Clinton, where the American population, or at least a large part of them, felt they had no future; that in the rust belt, people would have a shortened life expectancy — this is the clearest characteristic if the country is collapsing when the life expectancy is going down!
This is the reason for all of these developments and also many strategic re-alignments in the world, which I do not now have the time to go into, but it was what caused Trump’s election victory.
Mr. Trump has been in office for two weeks and it is very clear that he is implementing all of his election promises. Some are good and hopeful; others are clearly more problematic. Take his “America First.” My comment on the first day he said that, I said “OK, it’s fine, America First, but what about all the other countries? They need to be first, too.” We need a new paradigm, a completely new set of relations among nations where we don’t have one country being the first but where the new paradigm defines the common aims of all of mankind.
The globalization was at the expense of the American working population, clearly. Because globalization meant outsourcing of industry—the United States has very little industry left, only the military-industrial sector and aerospace and a couple of other areas, but a lot of the productive, middle-level industries are not there anymore; they went to cheap labor markets. So it is correct when Trump says he wants to bring production back to the United States, especially because you have tremendous problems: you have the collapsing infrastructure, you have a huge drug epidemic, you have violence, you have a rising suicide rate for 16 years. So, he was correct to cancel TPP and NAFTA because these were parts of the trade agreements of the system of globalization which went under.
But what about the effect this has on the other nations? Building a wall with Mexico? Under this system of globalization, the food self-sufficiency of Mexico, which was 80% in the time of President José López Portillo, went down to approximately only 50%, so how do you compensate for that? Also, General Kelly, who now has a new post in Homeland Security in the Trump administration, was absolutely correct when he said, “the Mexicans are not the problem, but it is the fact that all of Central America has fallen under the control of the drug mafia. People are running away because they fear for their lives, kidnapping, drug addiction, murder.” Therefore, the question is not the Mexicans; it is really the drug traffic.
The ban on immigrants for 90 days—seven Muslim countries cannot come to the United States for that period—there was a huge outcry in Europe, but what a hypocrisy! European politicians felt that they had to lecture Trump on human rights and all of these things. What a double standard! The EU for a very long time has tried to prevent all refugees from coming to Europe. Alone in 2016, more than 5,000 people drowned in the Mediterranean officially, and that does not count the many uncounted. They are trying to keep people away from coming through Greece and Balkan routes, which is now blocked by NATO barbed wire. The head of the CSU in Bavaria, Mr. Seehofer, said that there should be a preference for people coming from Christian Western areas. Now that is just another formulation for what Trump is saying, when he says he wants to keep the Muslim population out.
Now, the EU has no problem in leaving the Greek people alone with terrible refugee camps of 100,000 people, with really not much care. They don’t care about the refugee camps in the Balkans, where people without heating are trying to survive the winter, and they don’t have enough food.
After the very dubious deal with Turkey, the EU just concluded a summit in Malta, where they decided to make a deal with Libya — Libya, which does not even have a clearly defined government, where competing militias are fighting it out, and now the EU is training the Libyan Coast Guard. And even the First Channel of German TV, on a program called “Monitor,” said this is a deal with human traffickers and torturers, competing militias who are absolutely criminal, and with these people, the EU is trying to solve the refugee problem.
So, the EU in this respect is not one iota better than the idea of a wall with Mexico.
Now, Trump also promised to implement Glass-Steagall, the banking separation law of Franklin D Roosevelt; and around that there is a huge fight in the United States right now. It is very clear that the bosses of Wall Street are dead set against Glass-Steagall; they are moving like crazy to prevent it and keep control. The designated Secretary of the Treasury, a Mr. Mnuchin, already in a hearing with Maria Cantwell in the Senate, said that he is against Glass-Steagall as it was; he wants to have some modern variety, which basically is exactly not what is required.
So right now, we are in a huge battle. Marcy Kaptur [d-oh] announced a new Glass-Steagall in the American Congress, in a press conference by Congressmen and -women — Walter Jones [r-nc], Tim Ryan [d-oh], Tulsi Gabbard [d-hi] — all for Glass-Steagall. LaRouche PAC is in a major national mobilization; you have many other organizations trying to put Mr. Trump’s feet to the fire on his election promise. But this is clearly the Achilles’ heel of the Trump administration, because you can have at any moment another 2008 financial blow-out of the system.
Now yesterday he made a new executive order, giving the task to his Cabinet of having a review of all aspects of the financial system within the next 120 days. Today, you had all the financial media jubilant, saying Wall Street won; the bankers won. Well, it is not yet decided.
Now, on the positive side, Mr. Trump has started to improve relations with Russia. There are very positive signals and that is one of the reasons why the representatives of the unipolar geopolitical faction are so absolutely upset; because they want to have regime change in Russia, and not U.S.-Russian relations. They are even pronouncing Mrs. Merkel now to be the leader of the free world; which is a sort of a joke. Anyway, the first telephone discussion between Trump and Putin, both sides characterized as being very important. This is really a very important precondition, because if Trump would not have been elected and we would have a Hillary Clinton President, we were on a short road to World War III. So therefore, this is a positive first step.
Now, what about U.S.-Chinese relations? Well, that’s a little bit more problematic; because Mr. Trump made his first phone call not to Xi Jinping, but to the President of Taiwan; signalling that he may question the One China policy, which obviously the Chinese government was not very happy about. On the more positive side, the ambassador to China nominee, Terry Branstad, is a known friend of President Xi Jinping, and he just attended the Chinese New Year on the February 1st, concert of traditional Chinese music in Muscatine, Iowa; where he spoke of the long, cordial relationship between Iowa and China, where Xi Jinping and Terry Branstad had met for the first time in the ’80s; and where friendship agreements of sister-state relationship was established between Iowa and Hebei province. Mr. Branstad gave then an interview to Xinhua where he said that if he is confirmed as Ambassador of the United States to China, he will work for a win-win policy between the United States and China. That if the largest developed country and the largest developing country work together, it will not only be beneficial for the two of them, but for the whole world. And that is obviously the truth.
Now, where is the potential to make that relationship the crucial change in world history? Mr. Trump promised in the election campaign that he would invest $1 trillion in the infrastructure in the United States in the next ten years. He already met the CEO of Alibaba, Jack Ma, and Mr. Ma offered to create a platform for e-commerce of another $1 trillion investment for Chinese investors to invest in the United States, and American exporters to export to China. The Chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the National People’s Congress Mme. Fu Ying recently spoke in New York, where she said the infrastructure cooperation between the United States and China can become a bridge leading to collaboration in the New Silk Road.
The Schiller Institute, which developed this idea of the Eurasian Land-Bridge — we called it the New Silk Road in 1991 — it was the answer to the collapse of the Soviet Union, and we proposed the integration of Eurasia through infrastructure development corridors. We kept working on this program for 25, by now 26 years, with many, many conferences around the world; and we kept enlarging this program, not only a Eurasian Land-Bridge, but to integrate Africa, Latin America, all of Asia into one World Land-Bridge. In 2014, very much encouraged by President Xi Jinping’s New Silk Road, we published this report and we called it The New Silk Road Becomes the World Land-Bridge. In 2015, we elaborated a chapter of that World Land-Bridge report, and we called it The U.S. Must Join the New Silk Road. We had several conferences about that in New York, in Washington, in San Francisco, in Seattle; and we tried to convince the American industrialists, trade unions, and people in general, that it would be in the absolute self-interest of the United States to work with China on this World Land-Bridge idea. [The audio/video, transcripts, and programs of these conferences are available at http://newparadigm.schillerinstitute.com/%5D
It is very clear that the United States urgently needs a New Silk Road. If you travel over the American highways, if you are unlucky, you may end up disappearing into a pothole. If you look at the amount of miles of fast trains in the United States, you can’t find it. China, on the other side, already by the end of last year, had 20,000 kilometers of fast trains. By the year 2020, they want to have 50,000 km fast train, connecting every major city in China through a fast train system. And I can assure you by having had the good fortune to travel on these trains, that they are really fantastic. They are fast, quiet; they don’t shake you around like European trains.
China is the world leader right now in such fast train systems. They have a new project where they want to connect the greater region of Beijing, together with Tientsin and smaller cities to one very large region; where people living in so-called commuter cities can take a fast train like people elsewhere take a bus, and be in 20 minutes at their workplace. So, that kind of a system would be needed for the United States as well.
You need to have a new infrastructure fast train system connecting the North and the South, the East and the West. Why not build 50,000 miles of fast train in the United States? Then you could combine that with other large infrastructure projects, like solving the water crisis of Southwest America — NAWAPA; the creation of new water from ionization of the atmosphere; creating new water and weather patterns; build a couple of new science cities. For international cooperation, joint research in fusion power, space cooperation, and just have a completely different approach to the idea of collaboration among nations.
This is where the cooperation with China and other nations comes in. China already offered cooperation in infrastructure investment in the United States. The United States could join immediately the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, the AIIB. And if the present motion to implement not only Glass-Steagall, but to implement the Four Laws of Lyndon LaRouche: which is Glass-Steagall; a national bank which creates credit lines for these investments; create an international credit system for joint ventures around the world; and have a crash program for fusion power and space cooperation, then, the United States, China, and other nations could immediately start transforming the world.
It is quite interesting. For the last three and half years, since Xi Jinping put the New Silk Road on the international agenda, most Western think tanks were completely ridiculous: They basically said the New Silk Road is just another effort of Chinese imperialism. They have ulterior motives — just one report like that after the other.
But now, there is a change; there is a realization at least among some of these think tanks, that what is already happening is the biggest infrastructure project in history. Already what is happening now is 12 times as big as the Marshall Plan in buying power in today’s dollars. That it is already 4.4 billion people; that more than 70 countries are already cooperating. It is expanding very quickly; it involves already trillions of dollars in investments. For example, between Chinese cities and Europe, there are already eight regular train routes, where container trains are arriving every week. So, while the EU is still offish, the German government is still offish; nevertheless there are some changes. The Federal Academy for Security Policy in Germany, their Vice President, a Mr. Thomas Wriessnig, just put out a paper where he talked about the “Geo-Strategic Significance of the Chinese New Silk Road initiative, OBOR.” In his paper, he still reflects a little bit the old view, being a little bit suspicious here and there, but after all the ifs and buts, he recognizes the fact that the Belt and Road Initiative has a tremendously stabilizing effect everywhere, where it proceeds. So, he basically proposes at the end of the paper that Europe should be open to the Chinese offer to cooperate. And then he says that despite Trump’s previous anti-China statements, it cannot be excluded that the United States would jump at this initiative, joins the AIIB, and given the fact that the United States has leadership in digitalization, and the Chinese have expertise in other areas, these could be complementary and work together to each other’s benefit. That is exactly the point.
Not only would that benefit the United States; for example, China for sure has a better fast train technology than the United States at this point, China could help the reconstruction of the American economy. But there could be also joint U.S.-Chinese-Russian-Indian-European cooperation, for example, in Southwest Asia. Now that through the Russian military intervention in Syria and the Astana peace talks, there is for the first time the possibility of peace in the Middle East. But that requires to build up the economies of Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Northern Africa, because that will be the only way how you can dry out the atmosphere for recruitment of terrorism.
Now Mr. LaRouche already in 1975 proposed a development plan for the Middle East he called the Oasis Plan; which was the idea that you have to create new water sources through different technological means in order to have peace. In 2012, the Schiller Institute proposed the extension of the New Silk Road into the Middle East to develop Southwest Asia as a basis for peace. Our World Land-Bridge report has been translated into Arabic already; and a couple of months ago it was presented by the Transport Minister of Egypt in a big press conference in Cairo, together with Mr. Hussein Askary [Schiller Institute leader in Sweden, EIR Arabic editor]. Egypt declared that what is in this World Land-Bridge report is the Egyptian program for the Middle East. So, we are not starting with zero, but there is already tremendous motion in this direction.
When President Xi Jinping was in Iran last year, he proposed the extension of the Silk Road not only to Iran, but to Iraq, to Syria, and obviously from there to Africa and into Europe. The development of Africa is already being constructed with Chinese investments in many countries. Just a couple of days ago, the official opening of the rail line between Djibouti and Addis Ababa, Ethiopia occurred; and this is a very important intervention which will transform many countries in Africa. China has also now started to make a feasibility study for the Lake Chad initiative, which would bring water from the Congo River to refill Lake Chad, and that would transform the economic prosperity for 12 nations in this region. So there is already tremendous activity going on.
Instead of training a very suspicious and dubious Libyan Coast Guard to keep the refugees back in Africa, would it not make more sense if European nations would join with China and others, like Japan and India which already are involved in Africa, to develop the African continent?
The formulation by President Xi Jinping, that what we have to build is a community for the future of mankind, based on a win-win cooperation, is exactly how to look at this. This is not a zero-sum game where one nation wins and the other one loses, but it is a new perspective where all countries of this planet can work together in the benefit of each. It is exactly the idea that Friedrich Schiller developed in the context of the American Revolution in his play Don Carlos; where in the famous scene between the Marquis of Posa talking with King Philip II, where he said Spain should not be great because of this suppression of Flanders, but should allow all the provinces to prosper exactly like Spain. Posa said to Philip, “Be a king of a million kings!”; this was a very clear refutation against the idea of equality of the French Revolution, where equality basically meant, with the Jacobins that you achieve equality through the means of the guillotine, because then everybody is beheaded and everybody is equal. And Schiller contrasted that with the noble idea of the American Revolution that everybody in the whole country should prosper, and the common good should be what unites all.
This is what we have to accomplish today. We need a New Paradigm; and that New Paradigm must be as different from the present paradigm of globalization as modern times was different from the Middle Ages in Europe. The Middle Ages in Europe were terrible. They were a Dark Age, they were characterized by scholasticism, by superstition, by belief in witches; and modern times made it possible to have natural science, to have Classical culture. The New Paradigm which replaces globalization must exactly leave the wrong axioms behind, and by wrong axioms, I mean geopolitics, the neo-liberal idea of wealth creation, that it is the control of trade, free trade which generates wealth. It must be replaced by the idea that the only source of wealth is the creativity of the human being. And therefore, the common aims of mankind must focus on that, that what is unique about the human species is that we are the only creative species, and we can discover universal laws deeper and deeper. And we call that scientific progress, and when we turn that scientific progress into technology, it increases the productivity of the economic process; and that in turn leads to a higher living standard, a longer life expectancy, and prosperity for everybody.
When we do this now, we can reach the adulthood of mankind. Wars will be a question of the past; we will no longer use violence to resolve conflicts, but we will concentrate on the common aims of mankind, of space exploration, of reaching energy and raw materials security through mastering of fusion technology, and similar things. If we are guided by such a beautiful vision of the future, we indeed will be able to make a new set of relations among nations.
And I think if we can convince the United States with the Trump administration to cooperate with China on the New Silk Road, I am safe on the prediction that Mr. Trump will not be only a great American President, but if he can mobilize his country to join hands with China right now, he will go into history as one of the towering giants of all of universal history.