U.S. Conference of Mayors Denounces Obama’s Nuclear War Provocations
July 3 (EIRNS)—The U.S. Conference of Mayors, in its annual meeting from June 24-27 in Indianapolis, issued a scathing attack on the Obama Administration, directly targeting the massive NATO exercises now taking place on Russia’s border, Obama’s $1 trillion modernization of nuclear weapons, his failure to take significant action to reduce nuclear weapons, his belligerent policy toward Russia and China, and his disregard for the drastic collapse within the U.S. of basic infrastructure and the general welfare of the people. It is of note that not one major U.S. newspaper even reported this action.
The Mayors Conference took place at the same time as a historic Schiller Institute Conference in Berlin, in which Helga Zepp-LaRouche began her keynote speech saying that “We are experiencing an absolutely unprecedented, systemic and existential crisis of civilization. We have the coincidence of a war danger, where NATO is confronting Russia in a very, very aggressive fashion—which could lead to a Third World War. We have a U.S. confrontation against China in the South China Sea. We have the danger of a new 2008 type of financial crisis, which could blow up the financial system.”
The Mayors’ Resolution, while offering faint praise for Obama’s visit to Hiroshima and his conclusion of a deal with Iran, then states: “At the same time, the Obama Administration has reduced the U.S. nuclear stockpile less than any post-Cold War presidency and has laid the groundwork for the United States to spend $1 trillion over the next three decades to maintain and modernize its nuclear bombs and warheads, production facilities, delivery systems, and command and control, and the other nuclear-armed states are following suit…. The nuclear-armed countries are edging ever closer to direct military confrontation in conflict zones around the world, and the largest NATO war games in decades, involving 14,000 U.S. troops, and activation of U.S. missile defenses in Eastern Europe are fueling growing tensions between nuclear-armed giants, and according to former Defense Secretary William Perry: ‘The probability of a nuclear calamity is higher today, I believe, that it was during the cold war.’ ”
It directly contrasts this danger and vast waste of resources to the collapsing U.S. economy: “Deteriorating infrastructure is endangering public safety and quality of life, and the growing disparity in wealth is forcing people to leave America’s cities, and federal funds are desperately needed in our communities to build affordable housing, create jobs with livable wages, improve public transit, and develop sustainable energy sources.” It calls for redirecting the funds being spent on the nuclear buildup to “address the urgent needs of cities and rebuild our nation’s crumbling infrastructure.”
The Resolution does not make the demand—which should have been obvious—that this President must be immediately removed for the crime described: creating an imminent existential threat to humanity through thermonuclear war. Rather, it merely calls for “the next President” to take action. Nonetheless, it demands that “as an urgent matter, new diplomatic initiatives [be taken] to lower tensions with Russia and China.”
What is lacking, of course, is the solution, and therein lies the crucial difference between the Mayors’ Conference and that of the Schiller Institute in Berlin. Zepp-LaRouche told the audience in Berlin: “This conference has one topic, or one subsuming topic, and that is to define solutions to these crises: to discuss what would be the new paradigm, and is mankind capable of solving such an existential crisis? We have distinguished speakers from four continents, from many countries, and obviously these are the people, or they are representative of the kinds of people, who are determined that a solution is to be found.”
Indeed, nearly every speaker addressed the urgency of implementing the solutions long associated with Lyndon and Helga LaRouche—the reorganization of the bankrupt Western financial system through Glass-Steagall legislation in the U.S. and Europe, and the extension of China’s New Silk Road initiative to the entire world, ending geopolitics in favor of development projects meeting the common aims of mankind.
The courage of the U.S. Conference of Mayors, a non-partisan institution representing all cities in the U.S. with over 30,000 in population, in identifying the onrushing threat of global thermonuclear war, places an even greater responsibility on each American—to mobilize these mayors, and their constituents, to implement LaRouche’s program, before Obama can push the button.
STRATEGIC WAR DANGER
Putin: If Finland Joins NATO, Russia Will Have To Respond
July 1 (EIRNS)—The decision whether or not to join NATO is Finland’s choice, Russian President Vladimir Putin said today after meeting with Finnish President Sauli Niinistö, in Nanntali, Finland, but if Finland does join, Russia must respond. “Do you think we will continue to act in the same manner (if Finland joins NATO)? We have withdrawn our troops to a distance of 1,500 kilometers (from the border). Do you think they will stay there?” Putin said, reported TASS. “Anyway, we will respect any choice of the Finnish people,” he said. “It’s up to the Finnish people to decide how to defend their independence and ensure their safety. Of course, we value Finland’s neutral status and respect it, but it is not up to us to address this issue.”
Putin reported that Niinistö “[C]ame up with proposals today, at least on the first steps, aimed at enhancing confidence and preventing conflicts. I have already said that I agree with this. We will try to begin the dialogue with NATO at the summit in Brussels.” According to the Finnish YLE broadcaster, one of those proposals is that all aircraft operating over the Baltic Sea should have their transponders turned on so that their flights can be monitored. “We are well aware that there is a feeling of fear of Russia in the Baltic countries. On the other hand, NATO is seen as a great threat in Russia. For this kind of spiral not to continue, the key word is trust,” he said. Putin said that he agreed with that proposal and would be issuing instructions to put it on the agenda for the next NATO-Russia Council meeting, which may be held in Brussels sometime after the NATO Warsaw summit July 8-9.
Putin also noted that NATO keeps moving troops closer to Russia, but calls the movements of Russian troops on Russian soil “aggressive.” “We believe this is absolutely unfair and does not correspond to reality,” he said.
Iceland Agrees To New U.S. Military Deployment
July 1 (EIRNS)—The U.S. is moving ahead on its plans to bring U.S. forces back to Iceland so that it can track down and, if war breaks out, sink Russian submarines in the North Atlantic. Iceland’s Foreign Minister Lilja Alfredsdottir issued a statement yesterday announcing that Washington and Reykjavik have signed a deal authorizing the “occasional” return of U.S. forces to Iceland, Defense News reports. The return of U.S. military forces to Iceland will likely first be in the form of a deployment of P-8 maritime patrol aircraft, an aircraft that U.S. 6th Fleet Commander Adm. James Foggo indicated in a recent interview with the National Interest, that he is looking forward to having under his command.
Beginning in 1951, Iceland hosted U.S. Air Force units, including a fighter squadron and an AWACS aircraft detachment, as well as a U.S. Navy maritime patrol aircraft squadron on a rotating basis—all of which were assigned to NATO. These units were withdrawn in 2006 and replaced by a NATO air policing mission similar to the one that existed in the Baltic countries prior to the breakdown in relations with Russia. The Pentagon has been working since at least September 2015, when Deputy Secretary Robert Work paid a visit to the island, to get back into Iceland, and the Navy’s FY17 budget request includes money for construction of facilities to support the P-8s.
Russians Preparing To Test New Sarmat ICBM
July 3 (EIRNS)—The Russian Defense Ministry is reported to be deep into preparations for the Sarmat ICBM’s flight test program. The main requirement of the prospective missile is to improve power performance; for example, to overcome the existing and prospective U.S. missile defense system, former Chief of Staff and Vice Commander-in-Chief of the Russian Strategic Rocket Forces, Col. Gen. Viktor Esin (ret.) told Sputnik.
“The improved power should allow strikes on targets not only across the North but also the South Pole. Thus the launch range should increase significantly compared to its predecessor. In addition, the improved power characteristics should enable the missile to overcome any anti-missile systems.”
The extended range of the missile, Esin said, will require test-firing the missile from a launch facility in the north, Plesetsk, to a target area west of the Hawaiian Islands, rather than to the Kura test range in Kamchatka. He said this was done once before, in 2008, with a submarine-launched R29 missile, but he didn’t explain whether the U.S. has to be notified if the test warhead is going to come down near Hawaii.
Esin, it should be noted, is an active participant in the Luxembourg Forum on Preventing Nuclear Catastrophe, the forum joining leading Russian and Western figures who have been outspoken in warning of the current acute nuclear war danger, such as William Perry, James Cartwright, Igor Ivanov, Vladimir Dvorkin, and many others.
NEW WORLD ECONOMIC ORDER
Col. Pat Lang’s Blog Promotes One Belt, One Road Initiative, Cites Chas Freeman
July 3, (EIRNS)—Col. Patrick Lang’s (USA, ret.) widely read blog “Sic Semper Tyrannis” published a lengthy report today by retired Pakistani Col. F.B. Ali, promoting China’s One Belt, One Road program and specifically citing former Ambassador Chas Freeman as a leading proponent of the program.
“Ambassador Freeman rightly called One Belt, One Road [OBOR] ‘the largest and potentially the most transformative engineering effort in human history.’
“The scope of OBOR can be judged from China’s plan to ultimately commit to it some $4 trillion. Currently, the Chinese say, 900 deals in 60 countries are in place or are being negotiated or planned, with a proposed investment of $890 billion. Three ‘policy banks’ have been set up by the Chinese government for OBOR projects with an initial capital of $82 billion. A Silk Road Fund has been established with a capital of $40 billion. China has sponsored the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank with a capital of $100 billion (it is likely to invest mainly in OBOR projects).”
Colonel Ali detailed both the land and maritime dimensions of Belt and Road, and assailed the fact that the U.S. has remained on the sidelines and will likely attempt to derail the program, because it poses a geopolitical threat to American global dominance.
The Lang blog is widely read by military and intelligence professionals—both active duty and retired—and already there were a dozen detailed commentaries on the Ali post within the first hours of its publication.
Sputnik also recently quoted Chas Freeman on reports that the Assad government in Syria is conducting secret negotiations with Western nations, which have otherwise backed regime change efforts led by the Obama Administration. Freeman cited the Oslo accords, which were launched by the Norwegians, behind the backs of the intransigent U.S. government, and suggested that Australia might be playing an important role in secret talks with Assad.
The FB Ali post linked to Chas Freeman’s own website, which features his recent speech at the Schiller Institute’s Berlin conference last weekend as the lead item.
Putin Addresses Foreign Service Corps, Building EAEU/Silk Road Cooperation, New Security Architecture
July 1 (EIRNS)—Russian President Vladimir Putin addressed the meeting of Russian ambassadors and envoys in Moscow yesterday. It was the eighth such meeting held by the Foreign Ministry for its foreign mission staff. Putin began by stressing that Russia is faced with a world that is becoming “more unstable and unpredictable … profound changes occur in all areas of international relations; competition for both influence and resources is growing.” Putin added that, “Russia will always be able to reliably protect ourselves and to ensure the security of the Russian Federation and its citizens.”
He said that the global community needs an equitable order built on the principles of “common and indivisible security and collective responsibility,” through dialogue and cooperation. As the world is becoming more interdependent, cooperation, common willingness and readiness to reach compromises should become a key to settling complex international problems, Putin said. Russia is pursuing an effective and independent foreign policy, with the aim of building open and honest interaction with all nations “in the West and the East, in the South and the North.”
“However,” Putin went on, “we see how some of our partners continue stubborn attempts to retain their monopoly on geopolitical domination. They put to use centuries of experience in suppressing, weakening, and setting opponents against each other, and turn to their advantage enhanced political, economic, financial and now information levers as well.
“By this, I mean, for example, the practice of intervening in other countries’ internal affairs, provoking regional conflicts, exporting so-called ‘color revolutions’ and so on. In pursuing this policy, they sometimes take on as accomplices terrorists, fundamentalists, ultra-right nationalists, and even outright neo-fascists.” In this regard, he went on to discuss the wrongful actions in Libya, Iraq, Ukraine, and Syria.
He pointed out how terrorists have used to their advantage “clumsy experiments [implying by the United States, the U.K. et al.] in exporting democracy to parts of the Middle East and North Africa. Every man and his dog talks about this now. It would be funny if it were not so sad, and if it were not the cause of so many tragedies.”
Putin stressed that Russia would not yield to external pressure, either military or economic, but stick to developing mutually beneficial and constructive relations in various fields, and continue seeking solutions to international problems like the Ukraine crisis, while strengthening strategic partnership with Eurasian countries.
Specifically, Putin said that linking the One Belt, One Road Initiative brought up by China, with the Russian-led Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) is the first step to forming a large Eurasian partnership. It is also possible for a “common economic and humanitarian space from the Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean” to be formed together with the EU, he added.
Yakunin Establishes New ‘Dialogue of Civilizations Research Institute’ in Berlin
July 2 (EIRNS)—Attended by numerous prominent Germans with various connections into Russia, the new “Dialogue of Civilizations Research Institute” was inaugurated in Berlin yesterday, at an event featuring Vladimir Yakunin, founder of the World Public Forum “Dialogue of Civilizations” in Rhodes, and former president of Russian Railways (RZD). Although several other prominent figures refrained from speaking publicly and just listened to presentations from the floor, Gen. Harald Kujat (ret.), former Chief of Staff of the Bundeswehr, and former chairman of the NATO Military Committee, joined a panel, welcoming the new institute as a “courageous step” and contribution to “diversity of opinion.” Kujat rejected the slander of “Putinversteher” (“Putin follower”) which has also been leveled at him for his criticism of Western policies, as a “dangerous narrowing of views … which is only promoting escalation.” He added that he hopes very much “that the democratic-pluralistic society does not play down the institute as a propaganda coup from the start.”
That, however, is just what is being done by numerous “Russia experts” working at the leading think tanks in Berlin—like Stefan Meister (German Council on Foreign Relations, DGAP), or Reinhard Schroeder (SWP, German Institute for International and Security Affairs). Their biased assessments are the basis for all those completely hyped-up articles in the mainstream press, which portray the institute as a new weapon in Putin’s “hybrid warfare” against the (paranoid) West.
SCIENCE & INFRASTRUCTURE
Juno Spacecraft Is Ready for Its Capture by Jupiter
July 2 (EIRNS)—On America’s birthday, or, what is also being called, “the Brexit of 1776,” the Juno spacecraft will light its engine to slow down and be captured by the massive gravity of the planet, whose mass is second only to the Sun in the Solar System. Scientists reported yesterday that analysis of returning data indicates that the Juno spacecraft has crossed the boundary of the region dominated by the solar wind, to that dominated by Jupiter’s enormous magnetosphere. When the solar wind slams into the magnetic field generated by the planet, a bow shock results, and the density of particles changes. This drop in density is what the spacecraft measured.
Juno will be the first spacecraft to investigate the giant planet in a polar orbit, providing data for the first time on Jupiter’s giant magnetic field, and the interaction of its atmosphere with its magnetosphere of charged particles. Spacecraft and land-based observatories have imaged huge auroras above the atmosphere at the poles, which scientists explain, are the strongest emissions in the Solar System.
But aside from the “fireworks,” it will image, Juno has the primary goal of learning about the early evolution of our planetary neighborhood. It is assumed that Jupiter, made up largely of the hydrogen and helium that makes up the Sun, was the first planet to be formed. Scientists hope to learn if Jupiter has a core, and if so, if it has heavy elements in the center. This would “tell us something about the early processes in the Solar System,” said principal investigator Scott Bolton, at a June 16 briefing on the mission. He explained, “If there is a core of heavy elements—a bunch of rocky, icy material squeezed down in the center of Jupiter, it tells us … the rocks must have formed in the early Solar System, before Jupiter did.” This will tell you “sort of when, and how, and a little bit of where, Jupiter must have formed.” (There are indications that Jupiter formed closer to the Sun, and then “migrated” farther out.)
Juno has been designed to be able to withstand the extreme radiation environment near the planet, as it dips to only 3,000 miles above Jupiter’s cloud tops, but 37 highly elliptical orbits, going over the north and south poles, will subject it to high doses of radiation, which will end its mission, about 20 months after its July 4th arrival. (Parenthetically, all the hoopla about this mission showing that it’s possible to go into deep space with solar energy and not need nuclear, belies the fact that solar power was chosen because “no plutonium-powered generators were available” to the team,” Bolton explained. “It wasn’t because we were afraid of plutonium.”)
Because one-way communication Earth and Jupiter takes 48 minutes, scientists will learn whether the engine burn to place Juno into orbit at Jupiter succeeded, at 11:53 EDT on Independence Day.
COLLAPSING WESTERN FINANCIAL SYSTEM
War Criminal Tony Blair: To Hell with the Brexit Referendum
July 3 (EIRNS)—Former Prime Minister Tony Blair today told Britain’s Sky News and the BBC, and who knows who else, that Britain should “keep its options open,” and not rush to leave the European Union, vote or no vote.
In the tradition of Bertrand Russell, Blair told Sky News: “The referendum expressed the will of the people. But, you know, the will of the people is entitled to change…. I’m not saying we have another referendum. I’m simply saying, there’s no rule about this. We’re a sovereign people, we can do what we want to do.”
He demurred to BBC, that while right now it’s clear that Britain is leaving, keeping options open “means whatever we decide it should mean as we see how this debate develops.”
Blair acknowledged the Brexit vote had “seismic importance” for the United Kingdom. His frenetic efforts to reverse the blow it delivered to Her Majesty’s empire, however, come after that blow has hit—and at a time when his own role as a leading war criminal is again front and center in the public eye in Britain.
“Tony Blair ‘Should Go to Jail’ Over Iraq War,” Sky News headlined its article today promoting the special program that British television channel prepared for airing on Sunday night, ahead of the projected release on July 6th, of the years-delayed Privy Councilor’s Chilcot Inquiry on Great Britain’s involvement in the Iraq War.
Sky News cites the calls of family members of a British major who died in the war, for Blair to spend the rest of his life in jail, and former Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond, who demands that there “be a judicial or political reckoning” for Blair. Salmond cites “just some of the reasons” Jeremy Corbyn thinks Blair is a war criminal and people don’t like Blair: “the 179 British war dead, 150,000 immediate dead from the Iraq conflict, the Middle East in flames, the world faced with an existential crisis on terrorism.”
When Sky News “pressed” Blair about the calls for him to be jailed, Blair answered only: “I think it’s best we wait for Wednesday and let’s just see what the report brings … then I can respond properly.”
U.S. POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC
Rep. Walter Jones and 9/11 Families To Hold Press Conference July 6 To Force Obama To Release the 28 Pages
July 2 (EIRNS)—Pressure is mounting on President Obama to release the 28-page chapter from the original Joint Congressional Inquiry into 9/11, as weeks have now passed since the date the White House promised to make the final decision. Former Sen. Bob Graham, who co-chaired the Joint Inquiry and has championed the release of the secret chapter, told the Daily Beast’s Eleanor Clift that the White House official who told him the decision would be made by mid-June no longer takes his phone calls.
According to representatives of the 9/11 families, Rep. Walter Jones (R-NC) will hold a press conference on Wednesday, July 6 on Capitol Hill with family members to escalate the pressure on both President Obama and the presidential candidates.
AP’s Deb Riechmann published a news account today of the 47-page “File 17” document from the 9/11 Commission, which was declassified by the Interagency Security Clearance Appeals Panel (ISCAP) a year ago. That document spelled out investigative leads on the Saudi government ties to the 19 hijackers. Riechmann began her story, which has been picked up in newspapers around the country: “Amid the clamor a year ago to release 28 still-secret pages of a congressional inquiry into the Sept. 11 attacks, the government quietly declassified a little-known report listing more than three dozen people who piqued the interest of investigators probing possible Saudi connections to the hijackers.” She quoted Senator Graham, who confirmed that “Much of the information upon which File 17 was written was based on what’s in the 28 pages…. File 17 said, ‘Here are some additional unanswered questions and here is how we think the 9/11 Commission, the FBI and the CIA should go about finding the answers.’ ”
Riechmann noted that “File 17 … names people the hijackers were in contact with in the United States before the attacks. Some were Saudi diplomats, raising questions about whether Saudi officials knew about the plot.” After noting that the final report of the 9/11 Commission had “found no evidence” of high-level Saudi Royal Family or government ties, she reviewed some of the most important individuals with ties to both the Saudi government and the 9/11 hijackers. She reviewed the cases of Fahad al-Thumairy, Omar al-Bayoumi, Osama Bassnan and Mohdar Abdullah. Abdullah served as the driver and translator for the two 9/11 hijackers who arrived in Southern California in early 2000, al-Mihdhar and al-Hazmi. The 9/11 Commission Report noted: “During a post 9/11 search of his possessions, the FBI found a notebook (belonging to someone else) with references to planes falling from the sky, mass killing and hijacking.”
In an accompanying article, which may have derived from the 38-page Saudi “talking points” refuting their involvement, Riechmann quoted from 9/11 Commission co-chairs, CIA Director John Brennan and Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir, all denying any Saudi complicity. But she ended by quoting from 9/11 widow Kristen Breitweiser: “What needs to be understood by anyone who looks at just these facts surrounding the Saudi connection to the 9/11 attacks and the USS Cole bombing is that the Saudis and their relationship to bin Laden and al-Qaeda have never been fully investigated—by anyone—either before or after 9/11.”