The Fall of the Roman Empire—and You Are There!,
by Tony Papert
Feb. 18—Those of you old enough to have enjoyed that television series of Walter Cronkite’s, have by now witnessed the sorts of sudden, dramatic and profound reversals of history which you would never have believed possible just short decades ago. In 1945, this country came out of World War II as the greatest industrial, scientific and military power the world had ever seen. Those of you who are about 70 years of age, as I am, had never seen it any other way than as just that. The earlier, painful and laborious climb out of the last Great Depression, under Franklin Roosevelt, we had to learn about much later. And in our earlier days, that grim picture of the United States of the 1930s, had no real resemblance to the country we thought we knew.
Now we Americans find ourselves in the midst of a live replay of the Fall of the Roman Empire,— and you are indeed there! But it’s not just something we are looking at,— we’re right in the middle of it. Nor is that yet the end of it. “The times change, and we change with them,” as the French saying has it. We are in it, but equally it is also inside us. The rot of the British Empire, from which we Americans once fought our way to freedom,— but, alas, only briefly and episodically,— has returned, and now we are drowning in it. Now we see with the founder of our system, Alexander Hamilton, that the rotten decay of that British Empire is a moral decay,— and we can see just that moral rottenness inside each one of our fellow-Americans, and inside ourselves.
As Lyndon LaRouche has pointed out in detail, one side of the British-led corruption and destruction of the 20th-21st Century United States, was the dictatorship over science, and then consequently over thought in general, exercised by Britain’s Lord Bertrand Russell. Russell decreed that all of physical science must be reduced to mere mathematics, and fiercely persecuted Albert Einstein as the genius who disagreed and would never accept that dictum. Russell has succeeded,— a visit to any so-called “scientific” classroom should convince you of this. As Russell understood it would, this decortication of science has forced a dumbing-down of all thought. Americans have become thoroughly stupefied, just as our earlier great genius Edgar Allan Poe had foreseen these effects. This is why he fought to his last breath against what he decried as mathematical thinking, and against all of the imperial culture exuded from London.
Another side of the British reconquest of the United States was our humiliating domination by the (British-spawned) FBI of the unspeakable J. Edgar Hoover, from the time of the 1944 election, while Roosevelt was still alive, and through to the present. Because of the fear that was bred into Americans, no history of this reign of terror seems to have been written; the most truthful thing I have seen on it, has been LaRouchePAC’s interview with former Congressman Cornelius Gallagher. For decades, the FBI administered a caste-system throughout the United States, in which only the upper, the “security-cleared” caste, could get decent jobs, or often even any jobs. The lower, non-security cleared caste, was left to pick through the garbage, regardless of their skills.
The red-purges of Hollywood and the movie industry have been covered in print and on the screen, but no one bothers to add that the same thing was going on throughout the rest of the country as well. When President John F. Kennedy began to return to Roosevelt’s tradition in the new era of the 1960s, he was assassinated by,— guess what?— the FBI, on behalf of the British Empire. Then the FBI fired the shot that killed Jack Kennedy’s younger brother Bobby, whom Hoover hated, on the eve of his winning the Democratic nomination for President, which meant that he would have been elected President.
Then later, President Reagan, newly-elected in 1980, was being guided by Lyndon LaRouche, along with a team of Franklin Roosevelt veterans, towards returning to the Roosevelt tradition in a new form appropriate for a new era. But Bush family circles staged an assassination-attempt,— aided by an FBI coverup. Vice-President Bush took over much control from the severely-wounded President. And the British-FBI apparatus framed and imprisoned LaRouche, and, once he was in prison, seized control of his association.
Now we are in a new and totally different world. China has sprung back from its ten-year long “Cultural Revolution,” a British-inspired genocidal campaign against all its intellectuals. As happens throughout all of history, the world owes much to one man, Deng Xiaoping, for this historic reversal. China has risen up to the point that its unprecedented “New Silk Road” policy and its pioneering space program are inspiring all of sentient humanity, as John Kennedy inspired them in his time. Just as unbelievably, just as unforeseen to anyone beyond Lyndon LaRouche and a few others, Russia has risen up from its British-steered self-destruction of the 1990s, more costly even than World War II to the country that lost the most in World War II. Russia is now a world strategic leader under Vladimir Putin. Who expected this a few short years ago?
The United States and the entire trans-Atlantic region, which is to say the British Empire, has dug itself into a deep hole. Those who would pull us out must face the facts as they really are, if they are to prepare themselves to create the new facts which destiny requires. Like Kesha Rogers, they must draw inspiration from China’s space program, and the victories won by Russia, China and the BRICS nations. The prospect of the conquest of space and the Galaxy is required for humanity, and required to re-inspire the American people. In that context, the prompt removal of Barack Obama from the Presidency now, will unleash a surge of optimism which will make it possible to take other immediate necessary steps.
STRATEGIC WAR DANGER
Russia’s UN Ambassador Churkin Details How Turkey Is Recruiting and Harboring Terrorists
Feb. 18 (EIRNS)—In a letter posted in the UN Official Documents System Search, Russia’s Permanent Representative to the UN Vitaly Churkin, has provided detailed information on Turkish intelligence’s role in recruiting individuals from Russia, who have gone over to fight against the Assad government, to push them into the Syrian conflict and later to carry out terrorist acts within Russia, a TASS report said today.
“Reportedly, representatives of [the Islamic State] ISIL—with the help from the Turkish intelligence services—have established an extensive network in Antalya for the recruitment of individuals who have arrived in Turkey from the post-Soviet States, to enable their participation in the Syrian conflict and possible transfer to Russia,” says the Feb. 17 letter.
Churkin provided names of recruiters, among them, natives of Russia and Azerbaijan. “They are led by a Russian Federation national, Ruslan Rastyamovich Khaibullov (also known as Baris Abdul or by the pseudonym: The Teacher), born on 1 April 1978 in Tatarstan. He lives with his family in Antalya. He has a Turkish permanent residence permit,” wrote Churkin. Recruitment “takes place with the knowledge of the temporary detention center administration” in Antalya, TASS quoted the letter.
Churkin also made clear the route through which these terrorists are being pushed into Syria by the Turkish intelligence personnel. He said in September 2014, a group of over 1,000 fighters from the Islamic State terrorists, “who had come from countries in Europe and Central Asia,” were allowed to cross into Syria from Turkey in the locality of Alikaila (Gaziantep). The routes where militants cross, pass in the vicinity of the Turkish-Syrian border through Antakya, Reyhanli, Topaz, Sanliurfa, and Hatay. In addition, Churkin noted that since last December, the Turkish intelligence services have organized “an air route for moving ISIL fighters from Syria through Turkey to Yemen using Turkish military air transport,” the letter says.
Supplies of weapons, military hardware, and ammunition “are arriving from abroad via the Turkish port of Iskenderun,” he said. “Then the military equipment is transported from there through Hatay Province (Oncupinar border crossing) to the Syrian cities of Aleppo and Idlib on trucks belonging to these Turkish [‘charitable’] funds,” including the IHH, which is sometimes called a “governmental non-governmental organization” because of its close ties to Turkish President Erdogan. Churkin listed the vehicle registration plates in his letter. Later, once in Syria, the weapons and ammunition are distributed among Turkmen fighters, TASS reported.
U.S. POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC
Obama Prepares Justification for War on China
Feb. 18 (EIRNS)—Obama’s Defense Department, backed up by an EU representative, yesterday launched a campaign to attack China as an outlaw nation, if it refuses to obey the finding of the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague over the South China Sea dispute. A decision from the Court on the case brought by Obama’s puppet regime in Manila is expected in the coming months, basically to rule on the so-called “nine dash line”—China’s outline map of the area of the South China Sea which they consider to be part of China.
The problem is that China has never agreed to arbitration, arguing both that China and the Philippines had standing treaties that conflicts would be resolved through bilateral dialogue, and also that the issue was one of sovereignty, not economic exploitation issues, and thus not subject to the Court’s arbitration. However, in October 2015 the Court ruled that it had jurisdiction nonetheless, and would proceed to arbitrate without China’s participation—i.e., another imperial “Star Chamber” operation.
Amy Searight, U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for South and Southeast Asia, speaking at CSIS in Washington on Wednesday, said the United States, the European Union, and allies like Australia, Japan, and South Korea, must be ready to make clear that the court’s ruling must be binding; and that there would be “costs” to China for not respecting it if it lost the case, according to Reuters. “We need to be ready to be very loud and vocal, in harmony together, standing behind the Philippines and the rest of the ASEAN claimants to say that this is international law, this is incredibly important, it is binding on all parties,” she said. She added that the message to China was: “We will hold you accountable,” and that beyond damage to China’s reputation, “we can think of other creative ways to perhaps impose costs as well.”
Obama, at the Feb. 15-16 Sunnylands Summit with ASEAN leaders this week, also blustered that the decision is binding regardless of China’s view, and that “the parties are obligated to respect and abide” by it.
Also at CSIS, Klaus Botzet, head of the political section of the EU Delegation in Washington, backed Searight’s threats, and lied that China was “investing much more in its military relative to its economic growth; it’s forcing its neighbors into alliances against itself; positions its neighbors otherwise wouldn’t take, and the return on investment on this policy is negative.”
The Permanent Court of Arbitration was founded in 1899, but has no power of enforcement, and certainly none when one party rejects its authority. However, it is clear that Obama intends to use the expected ruling to support his threat of war.
COLLAPSING WESTERN FINANCIAL SYSTEM
German Industry Demands End to Sanctions, Russia Must Be Part of Solving Middle East Crisis
WIESBADEN, Feb. 18 (EIRNS)—The Chambers of Commerce and Industry (IHK) in Saxony, Germany, are loudly demanding sanctions against Russia must be ended this year. In a position paper made public Feb. 15 in Dresden, they also emphasized: “It is clear that we need Russia as an important economic and strategic partner for the solution of global challenges. The conflict situation in the Near East, to name only one example, cannot be solved without Russia. A new Cold War serves neither the solution of current conflicts, nor free trade and the Saxon economy. Russia is and remains an integral part of the European economic space and the European security architecture.”
Underlining the potential damage to Saxon machine-tool production facilities, given the Mittelstand’s longstanding ties with Russia, the IHK heads of Leipzig, Dresden, and Chemnitz are demanding that the Saxon state government immediately start an initiative for ending sanctions in the Bundesrat, the upper house of Parliament which is comprised of all the state governments. Saxony’s exports to Russia, much of it machine-tool goods, have collapsed by 25%.
Throughout Germany, industry is demanding the sanctions be ended, not merely because of obvious business interests, but also to establish strategic cooperation with Russia. After Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble’s Jan. 21 call at Davos for Marshall Plan-scale investments in the Middle East and Africa, he gave an interview days later calling for closer cooperation with Russia.
Also on Feb. 15, Mario Ohoven, head of the German Association for Small and Medium-Sized Business (BVMW) addressed 3,000 guests in Berlin at the BVMW New Year reception, where he called the sanctions against Russia “utterly false.” Gerd Müller, Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development, who is spearheading the Marshall Plan initiative, also spoke at the event.
Renzi Threatened Veto on EU Sovereign Bonds Scheme
Feb. 18 (EIRNS)—In a heated debate yesterday in the Senate, Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi threatened to use Italy’s veto power if the proposal to risk-assess sovereign bonds is approved at the EU level. The proposal was raised in papers by the German Deputy Finance Minister Jens Spahn and by the “Five Wise Men” council of economic advisors to the German government.
During the debate, Renzi was accused by former Prime Minister Mario Monti of destabilizing the EU. Italian media describe the heated exchange between Renzi and Monti as evidence of a real split between the Italian government and “the Europeanist establishment.”
Indeed, Italy is on one side of the two fronts which have emerged through increasing conflicts over several issues in the last months and weeks. These are: refugees, budget flexibility, bank bail-out, bank bail-in—and most recently, the proposal to “eliminate privileges for sovereign bonds,” as the Five Wise Men’s paper formulates it. Last but not least, yesterday Austria practically closed its border with Italy.
“The bank crisis concerns the first and the second largest German banks,” Renzi said yesterday in the Senate. “Instead of dealing with sovereign bonds, one should be courageous and say that there are too many derivatives in the banks!” Renzi then threatened “an Italian veto against proposal of a quota for sovereign bonds in banks’ portfolios.”
Renzi’s posture provoked Monti’s reaction. Although Monti’s group is part of the government majority, the former Goldman Sachs advisor and former Prime Minister spoke in very harsh tones. “President Renzi, you never miss a chance to slander the concrete ways of existence of the European Union, through a systematic destruction, with spikes and chisel, against everything the EU has meant so far.”
According to the daily Il Foglio, diplomatic circles are already speaking of an EU plot to dump Renzi, similar to the conspiracy that brought down Berlusconi in 2011. Even the name of his successor is being circulated: Tito Boeri, a Malthusian economist who formerly worked for financier Carlo De Benedetti’s foundation and is currently head of the Italian Pension Fund.
THE NEW GLOBAL ECONOMIC ORDER
U.S. Opposition to Silk Road Belt Is Like King Canute Trying To Stop the Tide
Feb. 18 (EIRNS)—A very insightful article in the “Indian Punchline” blog by M.K. Bhadrakumar, notes the stark contrast between the conflict in Syria, and the arrival in Tehran of the first Chinese train along the new link of the Silk Road Belt. Under the headline, “A Silk Road Train in Times of a New Cold War,” he writes: “Two days after the international Syria Support Group met in Munich, the Middle East witnessed an extraordinary event—the arrival on Monday in Tehran of a freight train carrying 32 containers after a long journey of over 10,000 kilometers originating from China’s eastern province of Zhejiang. The journey took 14 days—at an average of 700 kilometers per day, through the steppes of Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan. It’s hard to tell which is going to be more crucial for world politics in an enduring way—Syrian conflict or the first Silk Road train to the Middle East from China. In immediate terms, it could well be that the conflict in Syria and the war with the Islamic State dominate world attention, but from a historical perspective, the Silk Road train will stand out as a milestone beating the Islamic State by a mile….
“Can it be that the United States has missed the plot? Take a look at the Silk Road train. China has tested the efficacy of freighting a consignment to Iran in a time frame of a fortnight, which is 30 days less that what a sea voyage is presently taking from Shanghai to the port of Bandar Abbas in Iran. And this is the first attempt at an overland rail route. Trust Beijing to upgrade the infrastructure to make the route faster and cheaper,” Bhadrakumar writes. He also notes that China is also building a high-speed rail line between Tehran and the eastern city of Mashhad.
He then comments again on the total failure of the U.S. policymakers to get the message, citing Graham Fuller’s Feb. 13 article, “NATO—America’s Misguided Instrument of Leadership”: “American strategy seems fundamentally stuck in defensive mode against rising powers. Such powers indeed do challenge American aspirations for continued hegemony. But a defensive posture robs us of our vision and spirit; it represents a basically negative orientation, like King Canute on the beach trying to stop the encroaching tide. Worse, American military power—and the budget keeps rising—seems to have become the default U.S. response to most foreign challenges. The Pentagon has put the State Department out of business.” Then he notes that NATO in particular symbolizes this myopic orientation.
“So while Washington focuses on building defensive military structures, bases and arrangements overseas against Russia and China, we are being rapidly outflanked by a whole array of new economic plans, visions, projects for a new continental infrastructure and institutional developments that span Eurasia. These developments are indeed spearheaded by China and Russia. But they are not fundamentally defensive or military in nature, but rather represent the creation of a new international order from which we have either opted out or even oppose. Meanwhile, obsession with NATO and military alliances as the major vehicle of U.S. military policy after the Cold War, is a chief reason we are losing out in that new order.”
Railway Consortium Formed To Complete the Trans-Caspian International Transport Route
Feb. 18 (EIRNS)—Azerbaijan, Georgia, and Kazakhstan have agreed to establish a railway consortium to complete the Trans-Caspian International Transport route to ensure smooth movement of Chinese goods to Europe, reported Azeri News today. This was announced by Bakytzhan Sagintayev, the First Deputy Prime Minister of Kazakhstan, who led a government delegation visiting Tbilisi, Georgia, on Feb. 17.
The main topic of discussion between the representatives was the transport corridor, which is not running at its full capacity and needs rail connections. When completed, it will connect China with Europe via the territory of Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, and Georgia, bringing benefits to all these countries. According to Ruchan Kaya, strategic and political coordinator of the Istanbul-based Caspian Strategy Institute (HASEN), the Trans-Caspian transport route is the cheapest and most profitable corridor for freight traffic, and the full operation of this corridor will have a positive impact both on Azerbaijan’s economic growth and the other members countries of the region, Trend News reported on Feb. 17. “The commissioning of [the] Baku-Tbilisi-Kars (BTK) railway will accelerate cargo delivery from Turkey to the Central Asian markets via the Trans-Caspian transport corridor,” according to Kaya.
The Trans-Caspian International Transport Corridor is a multi-modal corridor which uses railway, maritime, and road transport for transportation of goods, and runs east-west. In addition to this transport corridor, an International North-South Transport Corridor (INSTC) is in the process of becoming fully developed. INSTC, also a multi-modal transportation route, will link the Indian Ocean and Persian Gulf to the Caspian Sea via Iran, and onward to northern Europe via St. Petersburg in Russia.
The ‘Bangladesh-China-India-Myanmar (BCIM) Economic Corridor’ is Getting Ready To Launch
Feb. 18 (EIRNS)—The Dhaka Tribune in Bangladesh’s capital, reported today on the finalization of Bangladesh’s strategy paper on the Bangladesh-China-India-Myanmar (BCIM) Economic Corridor, citing a statement by Bangladesh Foreign Secretary Mohammad Shahidul Haque at a seminar in Dhaka. “Bangladesh, India, China have already finalized their papers. In fact, India shared their paper last week with us. We are still waiting to hear from Myanmar,” he said. A high-powered Chinese delegation is scheduled to visit Dhaka next week to discuss how to move the initiative forward.
BCIM will link Kolkata, India, with Kunming, the capital of China’s Yunnan province, passing through Myanmar and Bangladesh, with Mandalay, Myanmar, and Dhaka among its focal points. From Kolkata, the corridor will head towards Benapole, a border crossing town in Bangladesh. After passing through Dhaka and Sylhet, it will re-enter Indian territory near Silchar in Assam. The rest of the passage will be connected with Imphal and then pass through the India-built Tamu-Kalewa friendship road in Myanmar. Mandalay will be the next focal point of the corridor before the road enters Yunnan, China, after crossing Lashio and Muse in Myanmar. The Chinese stretch extends from Ruili before reaching Kunming through Longling and Dali. The central corridor can be connected with two supplementary passages to the north and the south. Starting from Kunming, the northern passage heads towards Myitkyina, capital of Kachin state in Myanmar, before extending to Ledo in Assam. After crossing Dibrugarh and Guwahati, this road enters northern Bangladesh and joins the central corridor inside the country, before reaching Kolkata, The Hindu reported.
M. Shahidul Haque noted India will host the third BCIM meeting. “This meeting will be extremely important because that is where the four countries would take decisions and adopt a framework for giving life to the corridor. The corridor will eventually be linked up with bigger Chinese proposal of One Belt, One Road,” he said.