Dec. 20 (EIRNS)—The cover of Newsweek for the Christmas issue is a blaring headline, above a picture of Vladimir Putin, screaming: “Putin Is Preparing for World War III,” followed by “Yeah, That’s Bad News.” Germany’s Bildzeitung today runs a similar fantasy, reporting on the assessment by two unnamed NATO officials that the recently completed Zapad 2017 military exercise conducted by Russia and Belarus was a rehearsal for a full-scale Russian assault on Europe, with 100,000 troops (it was actually in the 10-20,000 range) planning to occupy the three Baltic states first, attacking by air key infrastructure in Germany, Sweden and Finland, and firing Iskander missiles into Poland from Kaliningrad. National Public Radio, funded by the U.S. government, today conducted an interview with Russian dissident Garry Kasparov ranting about Putin as a dictator with no support from his population, and praising Obama’s Director of National Intelligence James Clapper for saying this week that Putin “knows how to handle an asset, and that’s what he’s doing with the President.” (Interference in a foreign election, anyone?)
Psycho? Paranoid? What is clear is that the British and their assets in the U.S. and Europe are hysterical about President Trump’s continuing effort to establish friendships with Russia and China. To stop him, they are taking measures to prepare the populations of America and Europe for a war with Russia, a war which would very possibly mean the end of civilization as we know it. This is the entire purpose for the ongoing coup attempt against President Trump by traitors working on behalf of British intelligence through the Mueller “Russiagate” witchhunt.
Both Russian and Chinese officials reacted very sternly to the National Security Strategy released by the White House Monday, prepared by National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster and his team. Russian Presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov called it an “imperial” document, claiming that any economic or military strength shown by Russia and/or China is a direct threat to the United States. The documents claim that progress by Russia and China is “infringing upon world order,” said Peskov, “is obviously interpreted as a unipolar world reduced to America’s interests and needs only.” China’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Hua Chunying, referring to the Security document, said that “the development achievements scored by China are universally acknowledged and it is of no avail to attempt to distort the facts on the part of anyone or any country.”
Trump himself spoke at the release of the annual National Security Strategy, rather than the usual practice of the National Security Advisor, who oversees its production, introducing it to the press. In his speech, Trump refused to describe either China or Russia as enemies or adversaries (as the report itself does), but only as competitive “rivals,” and insisted that he would “attempt to build a great partnership with those and other countries, but in a manner that always protects our national interest.” Trump has, just in the last week, held two substantive phone calls with Putin, and, as EIR (practically alone) has reported, Trump conducted a visit to China last month that formed a close friendship with Xi Jinping and an expanding economic connection to China and its Belt and Road Initiative.
But, as Helga Zepp-LaRouche insisted today, Trump must be given the strength to go beyond “competition,” beyond the geopolitical outlook that traps Western leaders in a zero-sum, winners-vs.-losers mentality. He must be given the means to grasp the New Paradigm which is now expanding across the globe, driven by China’s New Silk Road, based on a win-win view of international relations, and a concept of the common aims of Mankind. This is the concept created by Lyndon and Helga LaRouche after the fall of the Soviet Union, to end the imperial division of the world into warring factions once and for all. The fifty years of creative proposals by Lyndon LaRouche for a new world economic order, touching every corner of the world, is coming into being through the Belt and Road. The U.S. and Europe are stubbornly clinging to the bankrupt old order, the “free market” myth sold by the British Empire for nearly 300 years—despite the fact that the American Revolution itself soundly defeated that imperial construct, and established a new system based on credit to create a productive future, rather than a dictatorship of money and debt.
There is no time to lose in returning the West to that American System, designed by Alexander Hamilton and advanced by Lyndon LaRouche. The tax bill passed by the U.S. Congress today creates one and a half trillion dollars in new debt, but simply pumps that money into the economy without direction, where it will continue to feed speculation rather than expand the real economy, as did the trillions of QE money-printing over the past 10 years. If the same credit were to be extended under an American System of directed creditary expansion, the U.S. economy could be totally transformed relatively quickly. This is the essence of LaRouche’s Four Laws, as explicated in the new pamphlet released this week by LaRouche PAC: “LaRouche’s Four Laws & America’s Future on the New Silk Road” (posted to LaRouche PAC’s website). The population is angry and looking for direction. This pamphlet, together with the LaRouche PAC dossier exposing Mueller’s coup attempt, are the means to provide that direction, and to give President Trump the means he needs to succeed in his stated goal—to make America great again.
U.S. POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC
Trump To Visit U.K., But Won’t Meet the Bloody Queen
Dec. 20 (EIRNS)—RT reports today that Trump told Prime Minister Theresa May, during their phone call yesterday, that he will visit London in February to open the new $1 billion U.S. Embassy, and will meet with May—but not with the Queen. It will not be a state visit, despite May’s invitation to Trump earlier to come on a state visit (which would include a trip to the Palace, since the Queen is head of state).
Labour MP David Lammy tweeted: There are reports that “Trump flying visit has been pencilled in for 26-27 February. Save the date, he’s going to be met by the biggest protest this country has ever seen.” A million people signed a petition this year demanding the planned visit be cancelled.
RT writes: “The new U.S. Embassy is located in south London on the banks of the River Thames. It has a moat, toughened glass that can withstand a rocket-propelled grenade, and has its own contingent of U.S. Marines.”
Putin, Xi, and Trump Have Ended Wilson’s Bloody Century of War, Writes Arthur Herman
Dec. 20 (EIRNS)—Arthur Herman, a fellow at the Hudson Institute, wrote an op-ed for the Wall Street Journal today which begins: “After a century of chaos and mass death driven by conflicting ideologies, the world is entering a new era of stability. This new period of history is defined by the balance-of-power geopolitics embraced by Xi Jinping, Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump.”
Herman retains a geopolitical outlook, ignoring the “new paradigm” concept of win-win economic cooperation which actually is the glue connecting Putin, Xi and Trump, and says the new era is a return to “balance of power” strategic thinking. But he nonetheless denounces the horror of “Wilsonian democracy,” which made the U.S. a superpower but created the “violent, seemingly endless wars in Korea, Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan. These conflicts started as idealistic ventures and eventually tore the country apart.” He adds: “This century of ideological conflict has finally spent itself.”
He quotes what he considers the key to Trump’s thinking as it appears in the new National Security Strategy document: “We understand that the American way of life cannot be imposed on others, nor is it the inevitable culmination of progress” (i.e., Fukuyama’s neocon “End of History” is bunk). Herman says of this concept: “This is as un-Wilsonian a pronouncement as any President has made in decades. He instinctively understands that American idealism didn’t save the world from Hitler and communism. American military and economic power did.”
Herman continues: “Some will say that this three-way rivalry is causing tension, risking another world war. I doubt it. In this new era, friction and competing interests will be seen as natural. The National Security Strategy continues: ‘Competition does not always mean hostility, nor does it inevitably lead to conflict. But conflict can be stopped short of war, thanks to the balance of opposing forces and the power of economic and military deterrence. This is the world of Otto von Bismarck, who said in 1862: ‘The great questions of the time are not decided by speeches and majority decisions … but by iron and blood.’ As in Bismarck’s day, Mr. Trump’s goal will be stability, not perfection; competition, not consensus. Indeed, an America that successfully competes is the best way to prevent conflict. It isn’t an era that will make idealists or humanitarians happy. But for all its imperfections, after a century in which ideologues and fanatics have killed and maimed tens of millions trying to make the world a perfect place, are we likely to do worse?”
Herman has just published a book titled, 1917: Lenin, Wilson, and the Birth of the New World Disorder. He also wrote Gandhi and Churchill: The Epic Rivalry that Destroyed an Empire and Forged Our Age, in 2008.
STRATEGIC WAR DANGER
Martin Schulz Compared to Hitler
Dec. 20 (EIRNS)—According to AP, Janos Lazar, Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s chief of staff, compared German Social Democratic Party (SPD) Chairman and former European Parliament President Martin Schulz to Adolf Hitler, and asserted that Schulz’s dream of a United States of Europe was “reminiscent of Hitler’s aspirations.”
On Dec. 7 Schulz wrote the following on his Twitter account in German, French, and English: “I want a new constitutional treaty to establish the United States of Europe. A Europe that is no threat to its member states, but a beneficial addition. A convention shall draft this treaty in close cooperation with the civil society and the people. Its results will then be submitted to all member states. Any state that won’t ratify this treaty will automatically leave the EU.”
Meanwhile, Hungarian Laszlo Surjan, a former vice-president of the European Parliament, said Schulz’s aggressiveness was unacceptable, and, “This is the voice that reminds me of Adolf Hitler.”
NATO Fantasies about Conventional War with Russia
Dec. 20 (EIRNS)—Germany’s Bildzeitung and other mainstream media as well, report on an assessment by two unnamed NATO officials saying that the Zapad 2017 exercise of Russia with 100,000 troops rehearsed an attack on the Western alliance: occupying the three Baltic states first, deploying long-range bombers to attack airfields and other infrastructure in Germany, Sweden and Finland, with Iskander missiles fired into Poland from Kaliningrad. The script: Paralyzing NATO and preventing reinforcements of Western positions in the East within two days.
The fact that all major exercises of Russia include the nuclear component as well is not mentioned in this NATO scare scenario of a non-nuclear war in Europe. Scenarios like this one, however, serve to make propaganda for conventional military budget increases in Europe—like in the recently agreed “EU defense union.” Whether that really impresses the Russians can be doubted.
COLLAPSING WESTERN FINANCIAL SYSTEM
Washington State Mayor Predicted Fatal Amtrak Crash Was ‘Inevitable’
Dec. 20 (EIRNS)— “It’s virtually inevitable that someone is going to get killed” said Lakewood, Washington Mayor Don Anderson on Dec. 4, referring to the fact that the new high-speed Amtrak Cascades Line was scheduled to go into service on Dec. 18 without the necessary safety equipment. In fact, the train derailed Monday on its maiden run, killing 3 and injuring over 100.
Addressing a City Council meeting on Dec. 4, Anderson also said to the Washington State Department of Transportation representatives: “Come back when there is that accident, and try to justify not putting in the safety enhancements, or you can go back now and advocate for the money to do it, because this project was never needed and endangers our citizens for very, very, very, highly subsidized transportation enhancement.”
President Trump, in response to the wreck, said that the U.S. had spent $7 trillion on wars in the Middle East while letting the American roads, rail, and other infrastructure collapse.
IMF-Dictated Pension Bill Passed in Argentina, Sparking Social Upheaval
Dec. 20 (EIRNS)—At 4:00 a.m. Dec. 19, after 15 hours of heated debate, Argentina’s Chamber of Deputies voted up (128-116) the pension reform bill demanded by the International Monetary Fund, which cuts pensions and raises the retirement age, to 70 from 65 for men, and to 63 from 60 for women. The bill will change the way pensions are calculated, basing them on inflation instead of wage growth and tax revenues, which will lower the overall pension amount that retirees will receive.
Throughout the debate, tens of thousands of protesters gathered outside the building, spilling over into side streets and eventually moving to Buenos Aires’s major July 9th Avenue thoroughfare. As occurred Dec. 14, when neocon President Mauricio Macri’s ruling Cambiemos had to call off a vote for lack of a quorum, police brutally repressed protesters.
After the Dec. 14 vote was suspended, Macri and his cabinet spent last weekend huddled with Peronist governors, extorting, threatening and bribing them into supporting the bill and getting their provincial deputies to vote for it. Macri desperately needs this and other “reforms,” to convince foreign investors to put their money into the country, showing he can further “open up” the economy and lower labor and other “social” costs.
Some deputies reported that the government threatened to withhold revenue-sharing funds needed to pay provincial salaries if the governors didn’t back the bill. As a sweetener, Macri also promised to issue a bond to compensate retirees for losses they might suffer, but this is a one-time measure that will make no real difference in what retirees ultimately are paid.
The protest against neoliberal policies is now nationwide and isn’t likely to end soon. While protests occurred in front of the Congress, citizens at various locations in Buenos Aires and in cities around the country spontaneously came out onto the streets to hold pots-and-pans demonstrations in defense of retirees.
GOP Tax Bill Is the Wrong Use for $1.5 Trillion New Debt
Dec. 20 (EIRNS)—President Trump today signed the “Tax Cut and Job Creation Act” which cuts household taxes for the next five years, and corporate taxes permanently from 35% to 21%. There remains little public interest in the Act; the United States is already a relatively low-tax industrialized country for households and individuals.
The acute need is not for lower taxes but for real wages to increase from a secular decline which has now reached 40 years, the deindustrialization period. For this, more productive and skilled employment must increase relative to the workforce; and the path to that end is wide-ranging national investment in new high-technology infrastructure.
The tax bill has the effect of authorizing $1.5 trillion more in Federal debt over a decade. Instead of using this to cut (primarily corporate) taxes, that new debt authorization could be used in Treasury borrowing for a new Reconstruction Financial Corporation, a national credit institution for infrastructure and more productive manufacturing and agriculture.
By contrast, the corporate tax cut which is the centerpiece here will result in much more money invested in stock market speculation, stock buybacks, bigger dividends, mergers and acquisitions—it will be, as Jamie Dimon called it, “QE4.”
THE NEW GLOBAL ECONOMIC ORDER
The Philippines Will Finally Go Nuclear
Dec. 20 (EIRNS)—The Department of Energy of the Philippines announced in a recent statement that it is now affirmatively taking “the option of adopting nuclear energy.” The Philippines DOE has been getting help from Rosatom, which is doing a feasibility study on resurrecting the mothballed Bataan Nuclear Power Plant, and on introducing more modern nuclear technology as an option. The completed Bataan nuclear plant was mothballed more than 30 years ago, when Ferdinand Marcos was overthrown in a coup. Philippines Energy Undersecretary Donato Marcos said that “the inclusion of nuclear energy as a potential long-term option will further diversify the nation’s generation mix.”
The DOE has been holding technical workshops, with help from Rosatom. Last week’s workshop, the Manila Bulletin reports, addressed new and emerging technologies, and policy issues for nuclear power. There has also been an “exchange of views” on institutionalizing centers of nuclear science and technologies, and the advance of nuclear science in medical applications.
On Dec. 11, a workshop was held in Manila with the participation of a broad array of scientific institutions, including the Philippines Institute of Volcanology and Seismology, the Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration, and also the Committee on Energy of the House of Representatives.
Topics of discussion included the full range of building, operating, and maintaining a nuclear plant, and introduced Russia’s small modular reactor concept, along with its full-sized VVER-1200.
U.S.-Russia Space Cooperation Potential Is ‘Limitless,’ Says U.S. Ambassador
Dec. 20 (EIRNS)—U.S. Ambassador to Russia Jon Huntsman commenting on the arrival of a fresh three-man crew via a Russia Soyuz spacecraft at the International Space Station yesterday, said, “There’s a lot of cache in space exploration. That brings Russia to the table, particularly during a time when our bilateral, political relationship is not perfect…. But it shows that both sides are willing to put science and the betterment of mankind before politics and diplomacy on the ground. And I think that says something very good about both countries.” Sputnik International quoted him as saying that that the countries have “limitless” potential to continue cooperation in space.
The ISS crew is comprised of one each from Russia, the U.S., and Japan.
India and Myanmar Sign Socio-Economic Development Plan in the Rakhine State
Dec. 20 (EIRNS)—India’s visiting Foreign Secretary S. Jaishankar has signed with Myanmar’s Deputy Minister for Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement U Soe Aung in Myanmar’s capital Nay Pyi Taw, an agreement for cooperation to focus on socio-economic development and livelihood initiatives in the Rakhine State, the site of the recent crisis over the Rohingya population, India’s daily The Hindu reported today.
The projects India planned to support include one to build pre-fabricated houses for the Rohingyas, who might return from refugee camps in Bangladesh. On Nov. 23, Myanmar and Bangladesh inked an agreement for the return of the Rohingyas from the refugee camps in Bangladesh. Two nations formed a joint working group on Dec. 19 to coordinate and oversee the repatriation of the Rohingyas, Deccan Herald reports. Rakhine State, located in northeast Myanmar along the Andaman Sea, is where India is involved in infrastructure projects.
The conflict between the Rohingyas, who are mostly Muslim and belong to the Bangladeshi ethnic stock, and the Myanmar’s Buddhists, has caught world attention. Media reports suggest more than 650,000 Rohingyas had fled to Bangladesh since violence erupted in Rakhine last August. Human rights monitors have accused Myanmar’s military of atrocities against the minority population during its clearance operations following Rohingya militants’ Aug. 25 attacks on multiple government posts. The minority Rohingya community does not enjoy citizenship in Myanmar and is sparingly given refugee status in Bangladesh.
In addition to the Rakhine State project proposals, a number of ongoing friendship projects were reviewed by Jaishankar during his trip, regarding the operation and maintenance of Sittwe port and the road from Paletwa to Zorinpui. Other key projects such as the Rhi-Tiddim road project, the Trilateral Highway road from Kalewa to Yargyi, the project to build 69 bridges on the Tamu-Kyigone-Kalewa road, the Yamethin Police Training Center and hospital projects, were also discussed, according to officials, the Economic Times reported.
China Presents Comprehensive Development Plan for Grenada
Dec. 20 (EIRNS)—According to the Hong Kong-based South China Morning Post today, China has offered the Caribbean island-nation of Grenada a comprehensive development plan for the construction of large projects on the island, home to around 100,000 people, including a highway connecting major towns and a railway encircling it. Deepwater ports that could accommodate a large number of cruise and cargo ships, a large wind farm and a modernized airport with longer runways are also envisaged, the report said.
The plan has been developed by the China Development Bank at the request of the Grenadian government, the plan is complete and “should be in the hands of the Grenadian government already,” a researcher who helped draw it up told South China Morning Post. According to SCMP, the plan also sees an economic future for Grenada as an offshore tax haven. The report also said the Grenadian government “assumed the primary responsibility for the development of their own country” and that China was “willing to provide necessary assistance to their economic and social development upon request.”
The Grenadian government announced its national strategic plan 2030 in November 2014.