TUESDAY, MARCH 8, 2016
Volume 2, Number 140
EIR Daily Alert Service
P.O. Box 17390, Washington, DC 20041-0390
- Nancy Reagan’s Death—‘The End of a Certain Kind of Era’
- Kerry, Lavrov Speak Again as Syria Truce Moves Further Forward
- Russia Expert Warns: North Korea Sanctions Bad for Russia, Could Provoke War
- Breedlove Wants an Army Heavy Brigade Permanently Moved to Europe
- British Intelligence Hitman Evans-Pritchard Crows that Brazil Crisis Marks End of the ‘BRICS Fantasy’
- Hillary Clinton, Confronted on Libya: It Was the Right Thing To Do, and Obama Did It
- Oregon Adopts Suicidal Power Policy, Eliminating Coal-Fired Electricity
- Heroin Epidemic Surging Beyond the Headlines
- Egypt and South Korea Sign $3 Billion Infrastructure Development Deal
- China Development Commissioner: Industrial Capacity Cooperation an Important Springboard for Belt and Road
- China Agriculture Minister Reports on New Push for Farming in Russia’s Vast Far East District
- Experts Warn that U.S. Zika Response Dare Not Be Another ‘Katrina’ Policy Failure
Nancy Reagan’s Death—‘The End of a Certain Kind of Era’
March 7 (EIRNS)—The reality of the present collapse of the trans-Atlantic system, is a deadly situation—from the physical economic breakdown, to the financial blow-out chaos, to the war danger, and to the terrorizing effect of the rotten U.S. election line-up and process. Most dangerous of all, is the cover-up or denial that there are solutions. What is required in these irrational circumstances, is a rational response. There are solutions. Just such a rational response is underway in the international drive by the leaders of Russia and China, for collaboration in space, science, economic development in Eurasia and worldwide, and peace. It was stated last week at national meetings in Beijing, that space exploration will now be an integral part of China’s economic innovation program. In the United States, LaRouche PAC’s Kesha Rogers is leading the drive to restore this same outlook, originally a hallmark of the American System, and embodied in NASA.
Lyndon LaRouche today put the question of leadership into immediate historical perspective, referring to Nancy Reagan’s death Sunday. He said that, if you take the period from Ronald Reagan’s election to the Presidency in 1980, through to Nancy Reagan’s death, this is a sign that, “an era of a certain kind has just ended.” Reagan embodied a standard of quality of leadership. He was a very able person. LaRouche spoke of his tie to him, and now, to the memory of his wife.
In the new era now underway, the crisis is not only the lack of quality of leadership, but the widespread hostility to such a quality. People in the trans-Atlantic are becoming more and more insane. Nevertheless, if we intervene, with rationality, to provide the leadership, we can come to the rescue and succeed.
The enemy deployment is intense, in moves against the BRICS, and in the war push. None other than British Crown functionary Ambrose Evans-Pritchard is on the scene in São Paulo, Brazil issuing forth with a March 7 article that the “BRICS fantasy” is now over, and “the BRICS concept has become meaningless.” He asserts that, “Brazil is the first of the BRICS quintet to break down on so many fronts at once,” and that South Africa, Russia and China are all beset with problems. He charges that only India still has “wind in its sails,”—which in fact, refers to Anglo-American dirty tricks to try to make India, the “last BRIC standing.”
On the related, crazed militarization front, the largest-ever military exercises—termed Key Resolve—are now underway between the U.S. and South Korea. Involving 17,000 American forces and 300,000 South Korean personnel, the drills will last eight weeks. This comes at a time of acute tension with North Korea, given the cumulative impact of years of geopolitics.
STRATEGIC WAR DANGER
Kerry, Lavrov Speak Again as Syria Truce Moves Further Forward
March 7 (EIRNS)—U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov spoke Sunday, for the second time in three days, on the Syria truce process. According to the Russian Foreign Ministry, they voiced a positive assessment of the actual progress in ensuring the ceasefire in Syria.
“The sides expressed a common positive assessment of the real progress in ensuring ceasefire in Syria, which is generally observed and has helped to dramatically decrease violence,” the ministry said, adding that the conversation was initiated by the U.S. side. They also agreed, again, on the necessity of beginning the talks in Geneva, without delay.
Meanwhile, the Russian coordination center in Latakia is still reporting progress on the truce in Syria, progress that is punctuated by ceasefire violations and terrorist efforts to bring it down. Those violations, however, seem to have had little effect, so far, on the overall state of the truce. “Over the past 24 hours the cessation of hostilities was violated 15 times (11 in Damascus, one each in Hama, Daraa, Idlib). Four people were injured under the shelling by illegal armed groups in residential neighborhoods and divisions of government forces in Damascus,” the center reported March 6.
On the sabotage potentials against the truce, Lt. Gen. Sergei Kuralenko, the chief of the Russian coordination center, reported that Jabhat al-Nusra is firing across the border into Turkey, in order to deliberately provoke Turkish return fire.
“The terrorists’ actions are aimed at provoking retaliatory fire by the Turkish military and its units’ engagement in Syria, which will inevitably lead to the disruption of the peace process,” he said. “According to our information, the terrorists are preparing an attack on the town of Qamishli, located on Syrian territory and populated by the Syrian Kurds,” he stressed.
Russia Expert Warns: North Korea Sanctions Bad for Russia, Could Provoke War
March 7 (EIRNS)—Georgy Toloraya, a Russian expert on North Korea, warned on March 5 on 38 North (the website project of the U.S.-Korea Institute at SAIS, in Washington, D.C.) that North Korea may respond to the new UN sanctions and the U.S./South Korea massive military exercises, which began today, by a military action or cyber attacks, and may drop out of the UN. Toloraya, in addition to serving as the East Asia Director at the Institute of Economics of the Russian Academy of Sciences, is also the Executive Director of the Russian National Committee on BRICS research. He spoke on the BRICS at the LaRouche movement’s CEC conference in Australia in March 2015.
The Obama Administration is clearly intent on provoking a military confrontation, not only with North Korea but also with China. Although the operative U.S.-South Korea war plan, OPLAN 5015, has not been made public, the Washington Post opened its report today with: “The United States and South Korea kicked off major military exercises on Monday, including rehearsals of surgical strikes on North Korea’s main nuclear and missile facilities and decapitation raids by special forces targeting the North’s leadership.”
Toloraya wrote that “the latest UN sanctions against the D.P.R.K. appear likely to substantially harm Russian economic and security interests on the Korean peninsula…. Russia fell prey to a decade-old arrangement in which it has supported—often with some reluctance—measures on North Korea agreed upon by China and the United States. This practice backfired in the latest round, as no one had consulted with Moscow on proposals that clearly ran against its interests. The final UNSCR contains a number of amendments introduced by Moscow, but it still will have an overall negative impact on Russian economic projects in the D.P.R.K. and on Russia’s role in addressing the North Korean nuclear problem.”
Among the conditions which will harm Russia, Toloraya names a possible ban on ruble-based transactions between Russia and North Korea, “a significant practice the sides had recently instituted in support of bilateral trade,” and their “severe restrictions on North Korean mineral exports, which has been the basis for North Korea’s payments to Russia for major investments,” including construction of electric power stations and metallurgic plants.
Most importantly, Toloraya decries the probable demise of the Russia-North Korea-South Korea cooperation on Russian coal deliveries through the North Korean port in Rason, a major step towards restoring the re-construction of rail and other connections between Russia and South Korea through the North—which Lyndon LaRouche has identified as the crucial, necessary measure for solving the Korea conundrum. Although the U.S. conceded to an amendment to the sanctions allowing the Russian rail line to Rason to continue operation, the sanctions will cut into the trade, and, Toloraya adds: “South Korea’s refusal to receive coal through that channel undermines the rationale for this trilateral logistics project, making its continuation doubtful.”
Breedlove Wants an Army Heavy Brigade Permanently Moved to Europe
March 7 (EIRNS)—General Philip Breedlove, commander of NATO and of U.S. European Command, is looking for the return of an Army heavy brigade to Europe. Breedlove alluded to this, during testimony he delivered to Congress last week, but he didn’t elaborate at that time. Breedlove discussed his proposals with top-level Pentagon officials while in Washington last week, according to a defense official familiar with the plans, but who was not named in today’s report by Defense News. Any increase would come in addition to the brigade-size force that would rotate through Eastern Europe as part of the $3.4 billion U.S. military build-up in Eastern Europe and the Baltics. The unnamed official said, “They are looking at ways to increase the permanent Army forces in Europe. They’re trying to figure out ‘how much do we need, and where would it come from?’ ”
Not surprisingly, there are bureaucratic obstacles in the way that will mean it might take months, or longer, before such a move is made. Inside the Pentagon, the issue would trigger a budget battle. In Europe, it would require approval from allies and an agreement with a host nation. And for the U.S., the question is whether that brigade will be stationed in Germany, considered to be a safe area in the rear, or in Poland, where it might be vulnerable to pre-emptive attack by the Russians.
COLLAPSING WESTERN FINANCIAL SYSTEM
British Intelligence Hitman Evans-Pritchard Crows that Brazil Crisis Marks End of the ‘BRICS Fantasy’
March 7 (EIRNS)—In his article in the March 7 Telegraph, Ambrose Evans-Pritchard, the avowed British Secret Intelligence Service (MI6) stringer, notorious for his role in orchestrating the slander operation against President Bill Clinton, proclaimed today that, in his view, the destabilization of Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff has entered a final phase, and its aim is to break up the BRICS alliance as a whole.
Under the headline “Downfall of Brazil’s Lula Marks End of BRICS Fantasy,” Evans-Pritchard maniacally trumpets that “Brazil is the first of the BRICS quintet to break down on so many fronts at once, but Russia and South Africa are both in deep crisis, and China is running through $100 billion of foreign reserves a month. Only India has the wind in its sails. The BRICS concept has become meaningless.” With last Friday’s grandstand arrest of President Rousseff’s close ally, former President Lula da Silva, Evans-Pritchard pontificated, “the drive to impeach Mrs. Rousseff suddenly looks unstoppable.” He adds that the “markets” are hoping that current Vice President Michel Temer will take over, “grasping the nettles of austerity and reform at the head of a pro-market government.”
Notably, Evans-Pritchard has been deployed personally into São Paulo, from where he has been writing prolifically since the beginning of March. In a March 3 Telegraph column, he insisted that Brazil “is heading straight into the arms of the International Monetary Fund. The sooner this grim reality is recognized by the country’s leaders, the safer it will be for the world.”
Simultaneously, the British Crown has activated Marina Silva in the drive to bring down the Rousseff government. Silva is a wholly-owned “green” asset of the British royal family, who in 2008 received from Royal Consort Prince Philip himself, founder of the murderous World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the “Duke of Edinburgh Conservation Award” for her environmentalist achievements. Silva came in third in the first round of the 2014 presidential elections, but she only became a presidential candidate after her running mate (she was a vice presidential candidate), Eduardo Campos died in a suspicious plane crash three months before the election.
In remarks reported by Folha de São Paulo March 6, Silva backed the arrest of Lula da Silva, and demanded that Rousseff and her Vice President Michel Temer be removed from office, not simply by impeachment but by the Supreme Electoral Tribunal (TSE), as this, she said, would overturn the results of the October 2014 election Rousseff won, thus “correcting an involuntary mistake” by the Brazilian people, and leading to new presidential elections.
U.S. POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC
Hillary Clinton, Confronted on Libya: It Was the Right Thing To Do, and Obama Did It
March 7 (EIRNS)—Appearing on CBS’s “Face the Nation,” Sunday, a defensive Hillary Clinton was directly challenged about her role in the 2011 Libya crisis. In keeping with her profile, she lied.
When challenged by host John Dickerson with the evidence presented by the New York Times Feb. 27—that she was the “deciding vote” in an otherwise sharply divided meeting on the Libya crisis—her first response was to blame it on Obama. “Well, look, it was the President’s decision,” she said. “These decisions are obviously, ultimately, the President’s.” She then tried to present Libya as the success story, by comparing it with Syria! “When I look at this, an absence of action by NATO,” she said, “would have probably turned Libya into Syria, which I think would have been an even more dangerous situation.”
When a credulous Dickerson noted that things in Syria, don’t look “so good right now,” Clinton blurted, “Well, no, it’s not good. I’m not saying that it is. But it’s sure better than Syria. I think maybe 1,500 people were killed last year compared to probably 150,000 in Syria!” For some reason, she has to keep reminding people how good things really are: The Libyans “have held two elections. They voted for moderates. They voted for democracy. They voted for a path forward,” she said, which, given time, will show itself to be right.
Oregon Adopts Suicidal Power Policy, Eliminating Coal-Fired Electricity
March 7 (EIRNS)—Having earned the dubious distinction of becoming the first state in the Union to legalize physician-assisted suicide in November 1997, the state of Oregon has now taken the next step to bring about a low development-directed killing of its citizens. It is the first in the nation to legislate the ending of electricity from coal. Last week, both its legislative branches passed the Clean Energy and Coal Transition Act, committing the state to eliminate the use of coal-fired power by 2035 and to double the amount of renewable energy by 2040.
The new bill will also require its two largest utilities to increase their share of clean energy, such as solar and wind to 50% by 2040, Britain’s Guardian reported on March 3. The bill now goes to Gov. Kate Brown (D), who has already issued a statement saying the legislation “equips Oregon with a bold and progressive path towards the energy resource mix of the future,” wrote Huffington Post, March 6.
Today, roughly one-third of Oregon’s power is produced from coal. Much of this electricity comes in from coal plants in Utah, Montana and Wyoming. Oregon has only one operating coal-fired power plant, the 36-year-old Boardman facility, supplying about 550 megawatts. Hydropower, at 43%, accounts for largest percentage of the state’s electricity generation.
As one would expect, the muscle to get the bill through Oregon’s legislative branches was provided by environmentalist groups. Michael Brune, executive director of the Sierra Club, which represents a powerful national environmentalist lobby, called the bill’s approval “historic,” and “the most significant legislative action the U.S. has taken since the Paris climate agreement” earlier this winter.
Heroin Epidemic Surging Beyond the Headlines
March 7 (EIRNS)—The horror of the surging U.S. epidemic of heroin addiction—driven both by drug availability and by the loss of a belief in any positive future for humanity—has been documented in recent months by a growing number of newspaper headlines and articles.
In coverage from March 6, titled “Heroin Epidemic Increasingly Seeps into Public View,” the New York Times chronicles how, in cities across the country, the sheer volume of users, combined with an increased desperation, has reached the point that they no longer seek to hide themselves in dark alleyways and basements, and are becoming very visible as part of the “new normal” of our dying nation.
“Nationally, 125 people a day die from overdosing on heroin and painkillers,” reports the Times, with the “cradle” of the epidemic being New England, specifically Middlesex County, Massachusetts, which includes Cambridge, home to both MIT and Harvard University. “From 2000 to 2014, Middlesex, which also includes the city of Lowell, a major heroin hotbed, had 1,634 opioid deaths.” Addicts are now even basing their choices around whether local cops carry Narcan (naloxone), a proven overdose antidote, a crude form of “life insurance” for the desperate.
Last year, an addict injected himself on a city bus in Philadelphia—during the morning rush hour and in full view of passengers—while an onlooker casually videoed the event and posted it to YouTube. In Omaha, Nebraska, officials are planning to have drug-sniffing dogs in their schools, after residents balked at installing metal detectors. In Niagara Falls, New York, a man left his young son alone while he went to the bathroom, where he overdosed, passing out on the floor. In Cambridge, there is a crisis of public restrooms, as restaurants, libraries and, most recently, even churches have been forced to close their public facilities, as overdoses continue to rise.
THE NEW GLOBAL ECONOMIC ORDER
Egypt and South Korea Sign $3 Billion Infrastructure Development Deal
March 7 (EIRNS)—On the occasion of Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi’s official visit to South Korea March 2-5, the two countries signed an agreement for South Korea to provide $3 billion in credit for infrastructure construction. The package, which involves the Export and Import Bank in South Korea, includes $700 million from the Economic Development Cooperation Fund.
Following a meeting between President el-Sisi and Korean President Park Geun-hye March 3, both attended the signing of nine memoranda of understanding for cooperation in industry, education, transportation, and justice, as well as boosting cooperation in nuclear energy, reported Egypt’s State Information Service.
President el-Sisi stressed Egypt’s desire to expand cooperation with South Korea in various domains in view of the 2030 development plan and the New Suez Canal projects.
In an interview with Yonhap News Agency, el-Sisi said, “I would like South Korea to actively invest in Egypt’s various manufacturing sectors. Egypt has an excellent labor force and has been ranked second in the world in terms of investment earnings rate. Many young people are without jobs; to resolve this, it is important to revive the economy. From that perspective, if South Korean firms offer jobs to the Egyptian youth, this will create a virtuous cycle.”
China Development Commissioner: Industrial Capacity Cooperation an Important Springboard for Belt and Road
March 7 (EIRNS)—Speaking at a press conference yesterday on the sidelines of the National People’s Congress, Xu Shaoshi, the chairman of the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), said that the idea of industrial capacity cooperation would be a “springboard” for the Belt and Road Initiative, involving 65 countries.
“The Belt and Road Initiative is very important,” Xu said, in reply to a reporter’s question. “It involves both bilateral and multilateral agreements. The planning and designing of the initiative was issued last year and different localities have since issued their own programs. It involves 65 countries, most of whom are in the process of industrialization and urbanization, and therefore the Belt and Road appeals to their interests. In addition, 30 countries have signed a memorandum on co-building the Belt and Road,” Xu said.
“We are working on different corridors and these are now being contracted and the projects are moving forward quickly.” Most advanced, he noted, was the corridor going through Kazakhstan with $13 billion of investment, but also the Pakistan corridor which will be the subject of a $30 billion investment.
Xu continued, “We will further improve our cooperation with a number of countries in capacity sharing. We will export our manufacturing of equipment, for instance, in railway production. It will be an import springboard for these countries in their collaboration with the Belt and Road. We have such agreements in our cooperation in building the railroad through Laos and Thailand, a railroad to Moscow, the inter-hemispheric railroad with Peru and the Western expressway in the United States.” Further, “It also characterizes our agreement to build the nuclear power plant in Great Britain and in Pakistan. The overseas investment is promoting our export of equipment which is up 37%. In 2016 we will be working further with these countries which have already a certain momentum with us and we will give out specifics on these. And production capacity cooperation will become more prominent and receive more financial support.”
China Agriculture Minister Reports on New Push for Farming in Russia’s Vast Far East District
March 7 (EIRNS)—China’s Minister of Agriculture Han Changfu spoke today about the collaboration plans between Russia and China for farming in the vast Far East District of Russia. Han spoke at a press conference, on the sidelines of the Beijing annual session of the National People’s Congress.
Chinese firms are already active in agriculture on more than 600,000 hectares in the Far East. Now, Han said, there will be Sino-Russian cooperation to expand this, by joint agriculture R&D, and training in agronomy and farming methods. Han called on more Chinese farm enterprises to get involved.
SCIENCE AND INFRASTRUCTURE
Experts Warn that U.S. Zika Response Dare Not Be Another ‘Katrina’ Policy Failure
March 7 (EIRNS)—The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced it will hold a one-day summit with state and local officials next month on the Zika virus, to map out a Zika Readiness Action in anticipation of the virus’s spread in the U.S. as the weather becomes warmer and mosquitoes emerge. Currently there are 150 travel-associated cases on the U.S. mainland, and more spreading in the U.S. Virgin Islands, American Samoa, and Puerto Rico, where the situation is particularly dangerous because of the collapsing healthcare system and high poverty rates.
Dr. Peter Hotez, founder of the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, warns that the U.S., “with its 726 mosquito-control authorities each doing their own thing,” is not prepared to deal with a large-scale Zika outbreak, the Houston Chronicle reported March 6. The Gulf Coast region, including vulnerable locations such as Houston’s fifth ward, is especially susceptible, due to poverty and poor living conditions which leave residents unprotected. Zika is a “crisis of poverty,” he warned. Brazil’s impoverished Northeast is the epicenter of the country’s microcephaly cases, he reported; and look at desperate Haiti, where there is no public healthcare system. Expect a mass outbreak there, perhaps of hundreds of thousands of microcephaly cases, which would be a “human catastrophe of epic proportions.”
In testimony March 2 before the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee of the Committee on Oversight and Investigations, Hotez said that lawmakers don’t understand the potential for a full-blown crisis from what they call “small outbreaks of Zika…there’s no such thing as a small outbreak… The minute we start seeing microcephaly cases, people will treat it in the same way as Hurricane Katrina on the Gulf Coast or the BP oil spill,” Hotez admonished, by which he meant that the response will be inadequate. There must be a coordinated public health response, including mosquito surveillance and control, etc., he said. Anything less than that won’t work, he warned.