EIR Daily Alert Service, MONDAY, APRIL 16, 2018

MONDAY, APRIL 16, 2018

Volume 5, Number 75

EIR Daily Alert Service

P.O. Box 17390, Washington, DC 20041-0390


The War Is Here!  How Do We Fight It?  What Are Our Weapons?

April 15 (EIRNS)—Where did that rocket attack on Syria come from?  Go back to Allister Heath, editor of the London Sunday Telegraph. Recall his article in the Daily Telegraph of March 14, soon after the Skripal case broke, under the headline, “Forget NATO. We Need a New World Alliance To Take On Totalitarian Capitalists in Russia and China.”  He concluded:

“Such an alliance would be the biggest shift in geopolitics since the creation of the UN. It would dramatically shift the global balance of power, and allow the liberal democracies finally to fight back. It would endow the world with the sorts of robust institutions that are required to contain Russia and China…. Britain needs a new role in the world: building such a network would be our perfect mission.”

Recall that he was writing on virtually the same day that 68 former Obama Administration officials came out with their action committee called National Security Action, which has two purposes—securing Trump’s impeachment, and attacking Russia and China.

Put into perspective where this is coming from.  It’s actually very weak at this point. It’s not broadly accepted within the U.S. population, despite the 24-hour-a-day brainwashing from the media—which is truly remarkable. Deep splits have opened up in the so-called Trump coalition around the abandonment of the idea that the United States is no longer going to do regime-change wars. The evidence in terms of what’s been presented as the basis of these attacks, is pure British hoaxes. The general population must be educated in depth on the British having done this before, as in the Iraq War—which is a great sounding-board with President Trump. The opposition which has arisen from within Trump circles must be deepened. More effective than a legal attack on the Constitutional power to make war, is an attack on the British aim, and on the fact that this is an attack on what Russia and China ultimately represent in terms of a new way of dealing with relationships in the world—and on the nonexistence of the evidence. Temporarily, they appear to have captured President Trump, although how can he know that the coup against him is British, and yet not see that the foreign end of this is equally British-controlled and equally aimed to drive him into a trap?—because the goal is just what Allister Heath spelled out, to re-establish the British Empire against Russia and China, while tossing Donald Trump into the ashcan of history.

This, and how the coalition in support of this evil is not holding together, is what people must come to understand. The LaRouche movement is taking the lead here, while simultaneously using the situation to bring into reality the 2018 campaign to secure the future around LaRouche’s Four Laws, because no one in the present scene in the U.S. has a clue to what to do for the future. The two parties, as such, as parties, stand for war and the FBI. LaRouche identified the remedy for the poison of the two-party system at his 90th birthday party five and a half years ago, elaborating how to bring people together for what is really needed, without reference to these outmoded parties.

The war is here in the U.S., and also in France and Britain. All people of good will around the world must intervene into this polarized situation to strengthen others who have a sense of aspects of this. An intelligent debate on the British lies and other important aspects of this crisis is urgent. There is a fight for the power of interpretation of what’s going on.

The LaRouche Political Action Committee will issue a new statement on Monday, April 16.


Putin Dubs Syria Strike an ‘Act of Aggression against a Sovereign State,’ Recalls Earlier ‘Outrages’

April 14 (EIRNS)—Russia’s President Vladimir Putin denounced the April 13-14 overnight attacks on Syria as an “act of aggression against a sovereign state,” and said that “Just as one year ago, when the Shayrat Airbase in Syria came under attack [on April 7, 2017], the U.S. used as a pretext a staged chemical attack against civilians, this time in Douma, a Damascus suburb.”

Putin pointed out the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) had dispatched its experts to Syria, but that “in a sign of cynical disdain, a group of Western countries decided to take military action without waiting for the results of the investigation. Russia condemns in the strongest possible terms the attack against Syria, where Russian military personnel are assisting the legitimate government in its counterterrorism efforts. Through its actions, the U.S. makes the already catastrophic humanitarian situation in Syria even worse and brings suffering to civilians. In fact, the U.S. panders to the terrorists who have been tormenting the Syrian people for seven years, leading to a wave of refugees fleeing this country and the region.

“The current escalation around Syria is destructive for the entire system of international relations. History will set things right, and Washington already bears the heavy responsibility for the bloody outrage in Yugoslavia, Iraq and Libya.”

Russia’s Ambassador in Washington Anatoly Antonov said in a late-night statement April 13, shortly after the attack, posted to the Embassy’s Twitter account:

“The worst apprehensions have come true. Our warnings have been left unheard.

“A pre-designed scenario is being acted on. Again, we are being threatened. We warned that such actions will not be left without consequences.

“All responsibility for them rests with Washington, London and Paris. Insulting the President of Russia is unacceptable and inadmissible.  The U.S.—the possessor of the biggest arsenal of chemical weapons—has no moral right to blame other countries.”

Iranian and Russian Presidents Confer on Political Damages from Bombing of Syria

April 15 (EIRNS)—President Vladimir Putin of Russia spoke by phone with President Hassan Rouhani of Iran on Sunday, regarding the bombing of Syria. According to Putin’s website, “The Presidents stated that this illegitimate action has seriously damaged the prospects for a political settlement in Syria.

“Vladimir Putin, in particular, emphasized that if such actions continue in violation of the UN Charter, this will inevitably lead to chaos in international relations.”

The two countries, with Turkey, are guarantors of the ceasefire in Syria and the related Astana peace dialogue.

President Putin also sent a message today to the 29th Arab League summit as it convened in Saudi Arabia, saying that Russia will help reconstruct Syria and Iraq, and reiterated Russia’s commitment to the sovereignty of the Arab states.

“Russia is ready for a multifaceted cooperation with the Arab League in order to ensure regional security, boosting political reconciliation and post-conflict reconstruction in these countries, [and] solving pressing humanitarian issues,” he wrote, according to TASS and RT reports on his message, posted to the President’s Russian-language website.

UN Security Council Confrontation over U.S.-U.K.-France Violation of UN Charter, International Law

April 14 (EIRNS)—Russia and China sharply rejected the unilateral military strike against the nation of Syria by the other three permanent members of the UN Security Council, denouncing it as a violation of the UN Charter and international law, during Saturday’s emergency UNSC meeting called by Russia. Their statements were met with dangerous arrogance and ridicule by the trio of UN mission ambassadors from the United States, the United Kingdom, and France.

Russia presented a short resolution condemning “the aggression against the Syrian Arab Republic by the United States and its allies, which violates international law and the UN Charter,” demanding all such aggression be halted “immediately and without any delay,” and not be repeated. Russia’s Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia called the military strike an act of “hooliganism in the international arena,” and: and not minor hooliganism, either, given that we are dealing with nuclear powers. The masks, —or rather the White Helmets—, he said, have already fallen. Now they are shifting blame to Russia. London, Paris and Washington are turning international diplomacy into “the diplomacy of the absurd,” creating myths, and then forcing people to accept them.

You destroyed the Barzeh Research Center in Damascus, Ambassador Nebenzia charged. This was a scientific facility used to build the economy. Do you want Syria to not have any economy? Are you trying to send Syria’s economy back to the Stone Age? To finish off what your sanctions have not finished off?

China, along with Bolivia, voted for the Russian resolution. Chinese Ambassador Ma Zhaoxu reiterated before and after the vote that China always opposes the use of military force and demands respect for sovereignty of the states, calling any unilateral action a violation of international law.

Nikki Haley, Karen Pierce and François Delattre, representing the U.S., U.K. and France, respectively, treated Russia as the enemy for defending a Syrian “regime” they assert “everyone knows” carries out chemical weapon attacks regularly. In her litany, Haley even raised the discredited charge that Russia carried out the Skripal poisoning.

The Queen’s representative, Pierce, justified the strike on the grounds of an alleged international right to humanitarian interventions (the infamous “Responsibility To Protect” doctrine). Russia never accepted that doctrine, Ambassador Nebenzia responded; the U.K. not only violates international law, it seeks to rewrite it. France’s Delattre rounded off the show with the announcement that the trio would be presenting a program to end the Syrian crisis, starting with an immediate, across the board ceasefire—the umpteenth attempt to protect the terrorists that are being driven out of Syria.

Several other ambassadors referenced UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres’ warning the day before that “the Cold War is back with a vengeance, but with a difference. The mechanisms and the safeguards to manage the risks of escalation that existed in the past no longer seem to be present.” That included Kazakhstan Ambassador Kairat Umarov, who warned the world is in danger, facing the threat of a deadly war on a global scale, because of this new “Cold War.”

Wall Street Journal Editorial Diktat: Call Putin’s Bluff in Syria

April 13 (EIRNS)—The brazen call for the U.S. to risk starting a thermonuclear war contained in the lead editorial “High Stakes in Syria” in today’s Wall Street Journal exemplifies the pressure insane Wall Street circles are putting on President Trump to “finish off” Syria.

Trump’s “ambivalence” on war in Syria has “unfortunate results: Russia and Iran have moved to consolidate a joint hegemony that would dominate Syria and Iraq and threaten Israel,” the Journalcharged. “Iran’s goal … is to use Syria as a military base…. The target is Israel. The risk is a Middle East war that inevitably would draw in the U.S.”

As for Russia, it continued, Putin’s “troops and irregular forces, supported by Iran, have enabled Assad to obliterate his opposition in Aleppo, Ghouta, and now with chemical weapons, Douma…. Keeping Russia out of the Middle East was a signature U.S. achievement during the Cold War…. What is needed is a substantial degradation of the Syrian regime’s military capacity. That may well include calling Putin’s bluff on collateral Russian casualties.”

Putin doesn’t bluff.

China Holds Largest Maritime Military Parade

April 13 (EIRNS)—Xi Jinping, dressed in military uniform, observed the nation’s largest ever maritime military parade in the South China Sea on Thursday. The parade, run by the Central Military Commission, featured China’s first aircraft carrier strike group and the most advanced weaponry of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA). President Xi is also chairman of the Central Military Commission.

Xi said the need to build a strong Navy “has never been more urgent than today,” and he called for efforts to build a first-class navy in the world, Xinhua reported.

Altogether 48 warships, 76 aircraft, and more than 10,000 sailors and soldiers took part in the parade which was hailed as “the biggest maritime military parade since the foundation of the People’s Republic of China in 1949 and a heroic display of the PLA Navy in the new era,” the PLA Daily reported on April 12. The parade was open to the public.

All combat systems of the PLA Navy and 10 air echelons joined the parade, Song Zhongping, a military expert and TV commentator, told the Global Times on April 12. Song said that China’s upgraded Navy signifies the PLA is not afraid of war and is capable of winning any battle. “China’s strength in protecting its national maritime interests has grown. The Thursday parade could also serve as a deterrence to maritime hegemony, making adversaries think twice before attempting to harm China’s core national interests,” Song said, and pointing out that the parade was also an education on national defense and patriotism.

China Central Television reported that destroyers involved in the parade were sailing to the Taiwan Straits where they are to conduct live fire drills. China has protested the recent U.S. announcement of arms sales to Taiwan.


Russians Further Unveil British Role in Staging Douma ‘Chemical Weapons’ Fraud

April 14 (EIRNS)—Just hours before the April 13 cruise missile strikes against Syria, Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Gen. Igor Konashenkov delivered a briefing in Moscow in which, for the second time in as many days, he nailed the British role in wholly fabricating the alleged chemical weapons incident in Douma, Eastern Ghouta, which was used as the casus belli to justify the U.S.-U.K.-France attack.

“Today, there are other evidences at the disposal of the Russian military department, which testify to the direct participation of Great Britain in organizing this provocation in the Eastern Ghouta,” General Konashenkov said. “The Russian party knows for certain that from April 3 to 6, representatives of the so-called White Helmets were influenced by London for the speedy implementation of the provocation prepared in advance. The White Helmets received information that Jaysh al-Islam militants were to conduct a series of powerful artillery shellings of Damascus on April 3 to 6.” The Jaysh al-Islam shelling was intended to provoke a response from Syrian government forces, the spokesman reported, thus setting the stage for the provocation.

The day before, Konashenkov had described how the jihadis had staged the videos of supposed chemical weapons victims, according to eyewitness testimony taken by the Russian military. He showed video interviews of two medical workers describing how the White Helmets on April 7 came rushing into the only hospital in Douma, cameramen on hand, screaming that everyone had been exposed to chemical weapons, pouring water on people, panicking others to join them, carrying babies around in a rush, generating panic. The two workers said at first, they thought it might be true and took part, but then it became clear that there were no chemical weapons and no one showing any effects of chemical weapons.

“Please notice,” said Konashenkov, “these people do not hide their names. These are not some faceless claims on the social media by anonymous activists. They took part in taking that footage.”

Syrian UN Ambassador: OPCW Had Certified Barzeh Center as Free of Chemical Weapons

April 14 (EIRNS)—A bombshell was dropped by Syria’s UN Ambassador Bashar Ja’afari, in his speech to the Security Council meeting this morning.

Shortly before the Ambassador’s remarks, U.S. Lt. Gen. Kenneth McKenzie told a Pentagon press briefing that the military strike the night before had destroyed “the heart of the Syrian chemical weapons program,” the Barzeh Research and Development Center in Damascus. He went on about how carefully the Pentagon had prepared the obliteration of the center, so that no plume of chemicals would be generated from bombing it.

Ambassador Ja’afari, however, reported to the UN Security Council that that same Barzeh Center had been inspected by OPCW inspectors twice in 2017. They found no evidence at the facility of any chemical weapons nor of any materials with which to make them, and the OPCW had issued an official certification of that fact at the conclusion of the inspections.

“How do you reconcile statements from the OPCW about Barzeh with the U.S. statements saying that there were chemical weapons?” Ja’afari asked.

Lavrov Reveals, Swiss Lab Found that Skripal Poison, ‘BZ,’ Is Used by U.S. and U.K., Not Russia

April 14 (EIRNS)—Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, speaking today at the annual Assembly of the Council on Foreign and Defense Policy, revealed that the Swiss lab Spiez had determined that “BZ”—3-Quinuclidinyl benzilate—was the poison used against the Skripal, and that it was in use in the U.S., the Britain and other NATO states, but not Russia. He said that the OPCW sent samples of the toxin that they had received from British authorities to the Swiss state Spiez lab, which is one of five internationally recognized centers of excellence which the OPCW authorizes to conduct such tests. Lavrov continued, according to TASS:

“That laboratory, where, I am convinced, professional scientists work, who value their reputation, made the following conclusions. Now I am going to cite the document. The analysis of the samples uncovered traces of the toxic chemical BZ and its precursors falling into the second category of chemical weapons under the Chemical Weapons Convention,” Lavrov explained.

“The above-mentioned formulas have been in service in the United States, the United Kingdom and some other NATO members,” he went on citing the report. “Neither the Soviet Union nor Russia has ever developed or stockpiled similar chemical weapons.”

Spiez is run by the Swiss Federal Office for Civil Protection, which is under the Defense Ministry. Lavrov reported that Spiez sent its results to the OPCW, which limited itself only to confirming the formula of the substance used, without mentioning any of the other facts contained in the Spiez report. He said that Moscow would be asking the OPCW about that decision.


VIPS Warns President Trump, ‘Propaganda Fraud’ Is Designed To ‘Mousetrap You into War’

April 14 (EIRNS)—On the very eve of the British-orchestrated attack on Syria by the U.S., the U.K. and France, the Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS) wrote an open letter to President Donald Trump “strongly recommending that you obtain and review actual evidence from the site of the alleged chemical attack in Douma, Syria, before ordering any military action.”

The letter points to the “rebel-affiliated” White Helmets as the source of the charges that the Syrian government launched a chlorine gas, and notes their experience, as intelligence professionals in “the operational use of misinformation and false flag actions.” Although the VIPS letter fails to point to the British authors of that false-flag fraud, they do warn Trump about the danger:

“One must therefore consider the possibility that the supposed chlorine gas attack at Douma may have been a carefully constructed propaganda fraud. Such a fraud would have as its purpose the elicitation of precisely the kind of political pressure that now has you contemplating military action. In other words, Mr. President, this may be a bid to mousetrap you into a war that neither you nor your fellow Americans want nor need.”

The VIPS letter was signed by, among others William Binney, former NSA Technical Director for World Geopolitical & Military Analysis; Co-founder of NSA’s Signals Intelligence Automation Research Center; Ray McGovern, former CIA analyst and Presidential briefer; Graham Fuller, Vice-Chair, National Intelligence Council (ret.); Philip Giraldi, CIA Operations Officer (ret.); Scott Ritter, former UN Weapons Inspector, Iraq; and Col. Lawrence Wilkerson (ret.), former Chief of Staff for Secretary of State Colin Powell. The April 13 letter and full list of signers was published as a Special to ConsortiumNews on its “VIPS Memos” page.

Congress Members’ Letter: Constitution Gives Congress Authority To Declare War

April 14 (EIRNS)—A bipartisan group of 88 Congressional Representatives sent President Donald Trump a letter on April 13, just hours before the military strike against Syria, urging the President, “as we did with the prior administration in 2013 … to consult and receive authorization from Congress before ordering additional use of U.S. military force in Syria. Your responsibility to do so is prescribed in the Constitution and the 1973 War Powers Act,” as no direct threat to the United States exists, the letter reminded.

Two Democrats, California’s Zoe Lofgren and Barbara Lee, and two Republicans, Michigan’s Justin Amash and Kentucky’s Thomas Massie, initiated the letter. Fourteen other Republicans signed, including several known for speaking out against regime change and war (e.g., Walter Jones, Ted Yoho, Raul Labrador); the rest were Democrats, many of them from the Progressive Caucus.

After the letter was sent, Representative Amash pointed to the lack of principle produced by the current two-party system, tweeting the text of the 2013 Congressional letter to Obama side-by-side with the current letter to Trump, accompanied by the comment:

“Witness the hypocrisy that our two-party system breeds: Check out these similar letters warning the President about commencing offensive strikes against Syria without Congressional approval. 2013 signers: 119 Republicans, 21 Democrats. 2018 signers: 16 Republicans, 72 Democrats. Very few of us signed both.”

Massie, for his part, stated in one of several angry tweets after the strike occurred: “I’m fascinated by the group of liberals who support @realDonaldTrump when he promises to launch missiles at other countries. I didn’t think they supported Trump or war. Double negative?”

The opposition is larger than the 88 Congress members who signed the letter. Tennessee Republican John Duncan, for example, gave a blistering speech on the floor of the House on April 12, on the folly of going to war over the alleged chemical weapons attack in Syria. He charged that the neo-conservative “chicken hawks,” none of whom have ever been in combat, are “eager for others to go to war … so they can think of themselves as modern day Winston Churchills.” The Iraq War (which he voted against in 2003) and 17 years of U.S. presence in Afghanistan are “seemingly permanent, forever wars.” This Republican recalled President John Kennedy’s speech in which he said that “we cannot right every wrong or reverse each adversity—and that therefore there cannot be an American solution to every world problem.” Donald Trump was elected because he promised to get the U.S. out of unnecessary wars in the Middle East, Duncan reminded him.

U.K. Opposition Escalates against British Empire’s Fabricated Syria Strike

April 15 (EIRNS)—U.K. opposition leaders are escalating the fight against Prime Minister Theresa May’s fabricated war drive. Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn, speaking on a BBC interview show on Sunday, cast doubt on the fabricated evidence used to justify the airstrikes on Syria. Corbyn said that “other parties” had access to chlorine gas and could have been behind the attack. May and Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson are particularly upset at Corbyn, because he was briefed on their fabricated evidence, yet he still openly doubts it.

Corbyn also questioned the legal basis for the strikes, saying that the “humanitarian” justification is legally “debatable.” Corbyn is calling for the U.K. to adopt a “War Powers Act” that would require the government to get approval from Parliament before taking military action. Scottish National Party leader Nicola Sturgeon backed Corbyn’s call for a War Powers Act.

On April 13, Sky News shut down an interview with retired British Army officer, Maj. Gen. Jonathan Shaw, CBE, who had commanded British troops in Iraq in 2006, when the general argued that there was no motive for Syria to launch a chemical attack at this time, and at this place, since it is winning the war, a fact that should be included in the debate.

The Independent reported on Sunday that it took a survey on the eve of the strikes, which showed that only a quarter of Britons supported them, and more opposed than supported them.

Germany’s Steinmeier: Russia-West Relations Getting Worse, ‘We Can’t Abandon Dialogue’

April 15 (EIRNS)—In an interview Sunday with Germany’s mass-circulation Bild am Sonntag, German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier (SPD), a former Foreign Minister, warned of worsening relations between Russia and the West and called for continued dialogue. He also urged the U.S. and Russia to take a “first step” to end the carnage in Syria, while expressing alarm over a deepening “alienation” between Russia and the West, particularly in the wake of the Skripal case.

Steinmeier called last month’s poisoning in the U.K. of Sergei Skripal, a former Russian spy, which Britain has blamed on Russia, “a very serious incident. But, we should be at least as worried about the galloping alienation between Russia and the West, the consequences of which stretch far beyond this case.”

Steinmeier insisted that “we can’t abandon direct dialogue.”

“Independently of Putin, we can’t declare the whole of Russia, the country and its people, as our enemy,” he said, warning that “our history speaks against it, and there too much at stake.”

Steinmeier lamented there was virtually no trust between the two sides, and said the task of countering the accelerating estrangement “was the real challenge for responsible politics.”

Turning to the Syrian war, in which Russia is giving military backing to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, Steinmeier said the situation would not improve until U.S. President Donald Trump came to an agreement with Russian President Vladimir Putin. “Of course you can’t do it without the regional neighbors in the end, but everything begins with the U.S. and Russia. Putin and Trump owe it to the world to take the first step.”


Justice Department Inspector General Releases Report on Andrew McCabe

April 13 (EIRNS)—The report from the Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz on former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe was released April 13. Titled “A Report of Investigation of Certain Allegations Relating to Former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe,” it enumerates the numerous egregious acts which led to his firing. The 39-page report concludes:

“As detailed in this report, the [Office of the Inspector General] OIG found that then-Deputy Director Andrew McCabe lacked candor, including under oath, on multiple occasions in connection with describing his role in connection with a disclosure to the Wall Street Journal, and that this conduct violated FBI Offense Codes 2.5 and 2.6. The OIG also concluded that McCabe’s disclosure of the existence of an ongoing investigation in the manner described in this report [the Clinton Foundation investigation] violated the FBI’s and the Department’s media policy and constituted misconduct.”


Philippine President Duterte Praises China at Boao Forum, Signs Six Infrastructure Deals

April 13 (EIRNS)—Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte attended the April 8-11 Boao Forum for Asia in Hainan, and met with host President Xi Jinping, signing six deals for infrastructure projects in the Philippines. “I need China more than anybody else at this time of our national life,” Duterte said, reported Rappler news agency.

Xinhua reports that China has kept the position of the Philippines’ number-one trading partner for the second year, and surpassed the U.S. to become the country’s second largest tourist source. Duterte praised China’s help in its war on drugs, building rehabilitation centers, and for helping rebuild Marawi City, which was taken over by terrorists last year and largely destroyed in the fighting to drive them out. Xinhua writes: “Manila, with its advantageous geopolitical position, plays a pivotal role in the Beijing-proposed Belt and Road Initiative. Sino-Philippine cooperation is mutually beneficial and thus is welcomed by people from both countries.”

The infrastructure agreements include $73 million in projects, and an agreement to pursue offshore oil development.


Italian Energy Company ENI Invests in Search for Fusion Power with Massachusetts Firm

April 14 (EIRNS)—Commonwealth Fusion Systems, created last year by fusion scientists from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, may get another investment from Italy. As Reuters reported yesterday, the Italian energy multinational, ENI, which had made a $50 million investment in Commonwealth, announced last month, is considering raising the amount.

“After the transition to renewable energy, the real breakthrough technologically is nuclear fusion,” said Roberto Casula, head of ENI development operations and technology. He estimates that it will cost $3 billion to develop a 200 MW reactor by 2033. The scientists at Commonwealth Fusion Systems are a bit more optimistic, with the stated goal of a small pilot reactor in five years, and a 200 MW reactor in ten years. The Commonwealth scientists are extending the thermonuclear fusion research they conducted at MIT, developing a compact high magnetic field tokamak. They are taking advantage of new developments in superconducting magnets for their fusion machine design.

Clearly optimistic that thermonuclear fusion will become a viable commercial energy source, ENI has signed an agreement with the Commonwealth giving it the right to use the project’s intellectual property.

President Putin on Cosmonautics Day: Space Exploration ‘Can Unite Us’

April 13 (EIRNS)—Speaking to Russian cosmonauts yesterday on the national holiday that celebrates the first manned space flight of Yuri Gagarin in 1961, President Vladimir Putin emphasized that research and development on Russian space programs will continue, despite sanctions and declining relations between Russia and the U.S.

In the dialogue, which is posted to the Kremlin website, the President was asked if a manned mission to the Moon is in Russia’s plans, President Putin replied, “Yes, it is. As you may know, the program extends up to 2030.” He described the work on the manned space capsule that will replace the venerable Soyuz: “The finishing touches are being put on the spacecraft Federatsiya, and research and development is on for building a super-heavy rocket to be used for the lunar program, so there can be no doubt we will be working actively and implementing this program.” He continued: “A Moon orbiter will come first, then modules on the Moon itself will emerge. At least that’s what the plans are.”

Regarding the declining relations with the U.S., Putin juxtaposed space exploration, saying, “This is in the interest of everyone, of the whole of humanity. It’s a sphere of activity that can unite us.”

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