An Historic Moment: China-Africa—‘A Shared Community of Interest for All Humanity’
Sept. 3 (EIRNS)—The deliberations of the Forum for China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) summit today in Beijing mark an historic shift for humanity, for all time. The centuries-long colonialist era, under the British imperium or under whatever other disguises it has been perpetrated—is now over and done with. This was an implicit premise of President Xi Jinping in his keynote, and in the remarks of his fellow speakers—all institutional leaders: President Cyril Ramaphosa, of South Africa, in the BRICS; President Paul Kagame of Rwanda, current chair country of the African Union (AU); Antonio Guterres, Secretary General of the United Nations; and Moussa Faki Mahamat, AU Commission Chairman. AU Commission Chairman Faki announced that the African Union will open a permanent representative office in Beijing, during his visit.
Even the dramatic visual setting of the Xi panel underscored the significance of the event. Seated on stage behind the speaker’s lectern, facing outward to the thousands in the audience, were the heads of state and government of 53 African nations. “The confidence of African leaders is now on the world stage,” observed Schiller Institute President Helga Zepp-LaRouche today. Collaborating with China, “Africa will be a powerhouse of the future.”
President Xi Jinping announced specific commitments and plans for joint work, and spoke in powerful images of the spirit involved. He said that China and Africa will “walk together towards prosperity.” We will “think with one mind, and work with one heart.”
Of special note, is that Xi also stressed that China is ready to work with others as international partners. He said that China and Africa will be setting an example, and “presenting a community of shared interest for all humanity.” He underscored this metaphorically, saying, “Anyone who isolates himself on an island has no future.” Also, “everyone has in himself a little bit of others.”
UN Secretary General Guterres called the FOCAC meeting an “historic moment.” He spoke emphatically about how the China-Africa collaboration, and the Belt and Road Initiative, are now inherently involved in the UN Agenda 2030 (the anti-poverty global objective), as well as in AU Agenda 2063 (the 50-year continental development perspective announced by the AU in 2013, and which marks the centennial of the OAU Charter in 1963).
Xi announced an eight-point action list of joint China-Africa activity, for 2019-2021 (three years is the FOCAC time cycle, since its founding in 2000). China is committed to $60 billion in funding over that period, for which Xi gave a breakdown in terms of how much will be in private investment, government grants and loans, etc.
More is now expected to come out about specific programs. For example, it is rumored that the Transaqua may be on the agenda for one of the FOCAC sessions. These FOCAC deliberations bring to life the panoply of projects in the Schiller Institute book released less than a year ago, “Extending the New Silk Road to West Asia and Africa,” by Hussein Askary and Jason Ross. This book is a must-have roadmap for what is underway in Africa; and the new Schiller Institute book, “The New Silk Road Becomes the World Land-Bridge: A Shared Future for Humanity, Vol. II” gives the world picture.
One nasty update, is that a specific lie has been repeated constantly in media and academic circles against China and the FOCAC development perspective, from Wall Street/City of London sources. The lie asserts that China is bullying vulnerable nations into debt traps. This fraud is demolished in a new paper, titled, “Why Accusations Against China for ‘Debtbook Diplomacy’ Are a Hoax,” by the same two authors, Askary and Ross. It will be published in the Sept. 7 issue EIR, and available on the Schiller Institute website.
Other events today, focussed on Argentina, point up the urgency of acting on the principle embodied in FOCAC, to push for a world confab of major powers for a New Bretton Woods system to enable development, and get out of the breakdown-trap now happening to the expiring Wall Street/City of London monetary system. The President and finance minister of Argentina went on television to announce sudden, drastic cuts in government functions, pensions, pay and work conditions, in a futile display of compliance with IMF and Wall Street conditionalities, in hopes of aid as the country plunges into chaos.
This points up the real stakes in the U.S. midterm elections, in the LaRouchePAC intervention with a “Campaign to Win the Future.”
NEW GLOBAL ECONOMIC ORDER
China To Invest $60 Billion in Africa, as Xi Aims To ‘Explore a New Path of International Relations’
Sept. 3 (EIRNS)—The minions of the British Empire are no doubt chewing the rugs today after Chinese President Xi Jinping’s keynote of the Beijing Summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC.) President Xi announced that China would be investing $60 billion in Africa over the next three years, which would include $15 billion of interest-free and concessional loans, $20 billion of credit lines, a $10 billion special fund for development financing, a $5 billion special fund for financing imports from Africa, and encouraging investment by Chinese companies to the tune of $10 billion in Africa.
In his speech, Xi pointed to the long history of cooperation between China and Africa, welcoming the new partnerships with Burkina Faso, Gambia, and São Tomé and Principe. This cooperation was based on the following principles—the five “no’s”: no interference in African countries and pursuit of development paths that fit their national conditions; no interference in African countries’ internal affairs; no imposition of China’s will on African countries; no attachment of political strings to assistance to Africa; and no seeking of selfish political gains in investment and financing cooperation with Africa. “We welcome Africa to the fast train of Chinese development,” Xi said. Central to the cooperation has been the Belt and Road Initiative, which in Africa is in synergy with the African Union’s “Agenda 2063,” which marks the centennial of the official end of colonialism in Africa in 1963.
The Beijing Summit has also served to consolidate the support for China’s Belt and Road Initiative in the face of the hysterical campaign by Western media outlets, characterizing the BRI as a “debt trap” and “a new colonialism,” accusations which were unequivocally rejected by the African leaders, both in the forum and in the numerous media interviews. “No one can deny the achievements of our cooperation. China stands ready to work with other partners to develop Africa,” Xi underlined, and warned that “no one should stand in the way of supporting African development.” He said, “The world is undergoing profound changes and an accelerated transformation in the global governance and the world order.” Further, “There is a surging trend toward multipolarity and cultural diversity,” and with “the rapid rise of developing countries, it will create a greater balance in global power.”
Indeed, the Beijing FOCAC Summit has consolidated a significant force for creating a new form of “global governance” in which the developing countries would play a greater role. In his speech, President Xi had made this objective quite clear. “To meet the challenges of the time, China will make a greater contribution.” We will “explore a new path of international relations” and push forward the “development of the Belt and Road Initiative. … China will become more involved in global governance, and will call for the increasing representation and a voice for the developing countries in international affairs, and strengthen the role of the South, which has been a weak link in the system.”
He then laid out the eight major initiatives that China would implement in collaboration with Africa in the coming three years.
1. In industrial promotion, China will set up a China-Africa trade expo in China in order to encourage Chinese investment in Africa.
2. It will also carry out 50 agricultural assistance programs, provide $147 million in food aid to African countries affected by natural disasters and send 500 agricultural experts to Africa.
3. With regard to infrastructure, China together with the African Union will formulate a China-Africa infrastructure cooperation program.
4. With regard to trade, China will increase its imports from Africa, in particular non-resources products.
5. On green development, China will undertake 50 projects focusing on climate change, ocean, desertification prevention and control, and wildlife protection.
6. On capacity building, China will set up 10 workshops in Africa to offer vocational training for young Africans. It will also train 1,000 high-caliber Africans for training in innovation sectors; provide Africa with 50,000 government scholarships; and sponsor seminar and workshop opportunities for 50,000 Africans and invite 2,000 African students to visit China for exchanges.
7. In health care, China will upgrade 50 medical and health aid programs for Africa. On people-to-people exchanges, China will set up an institute of African studies and enhance exchanges with Africa on civilization.
8. And on peace and security, China will set up a China-Africa peace and security fund and continue providing free military aid to the African Union and will support countries in the Sahel region, and those bordering the Gulf of Aden and the Gulf of Guinea, in upholding security and combatting terrorism in their regions.
African Leaders Favor Continent Becoming Full, Integral Part of Belt and Road Initiative
Sept. 3 (EIRNS)—In his speech to the FOCAC Summit, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa categorically rejected the accusations made by the British Empire and its minions regarding China’s cooperation with Africa and the significance of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). China-Africa cooperation, he said, was in the interests of the African nations. “In the values that it promotes, in the manner that it operates, and in the impact that it has on African countries, FOCAC refutes the view that a new colonialism is taking hold in Africa, as our detractors would have us believe. It is premised on the African Union’s Agenda 2063, a vision that has been crafted in Africa, by Africans. It is a vision of an integrated, prosperous and peaceful Africa, driven by its own citizens and representing a dynamic force in the international arena.” Ramaphosa also referred to the beginning of the relationship when then Premier Zhou Enlai visited the continent in 1963-64.
“Why do we support the Belt and Road Initiative?” Ramaphosa asked. “Because we are confident that this initiative, which effectively complements the work of FOCAC, will reduce the costs and increase the volume of trade between Africa and China. It will encourage the development of Africa’s infrastructure, a critical requirement for meaningful regional and continental integration,” he said.
Ramaphosa was followed by Rwandan President Paul Kagame, the current rotating chairman of the African Union. “Africa wishes to be a full and integral part of the Belt and Road Initiative,” he said. “The gains will be enjoyed by everyone.” Kagame praised in particular the personal commitment of President Xi to this initiative. “He has visited every region of our continent, including my country Rwanda,” Kagame said. “China has proven to be a win-win partner and dear friend.”
UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres gave support to the message expressed by the African leaders, who said that “it is vital that current and future development cooperation contributes to peace, security and to building a ‘community of shared future for mankind,’ ” reiterating what underlies President Xi’s conception of a new form of international relations. Guterres also expressed support for strengthening South-South cooperation.
The final speaker at the same keynote session was AU Commission Chairman Moussa Faki Mahamat. He announced that the AU has opened a representative office in Beijing as of Sept. 2. Faki said that the China-Africa “partnership can re-shape the world political relations.”
Geraci, Italian ‘Task Force China’ in Beijing for Belt and Road Negotiations
Sept. 3 (EIRNS)—Italian Undersecretary to the Economic Development Ministry (Industry and Trade) Michele Geraci is in China, leading the Task Force China which he himself created last month. (See EIR Daily Alert, Aug. 22, 2018.) After three days in Shanghai, Geraci is now in Beijing where, among other things, he will participate in the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation.
Cooperation with China on African development, and Chinese investments in infrastructure in the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative, are central to Geraci’s mission, the first of many to follow, he said in an interview with Formiche today.
On Italy as the terminus for the Silk Road, Geraci explains that, “We are not intending to sell anything … we must favor brown field and green field investments, that is, those investments that increase the productive capacity of the country. We won’t sell a port, but we will seek Chinese investments to, for instance, build a new dock…. We don’t want a simple exchange of equities, but the emission of new capital directly in the company, broadening its productive capacity and creating new jobs. China is very interested in the port of Trieste, but also in Genoa, Venice, Taranto. The Chinese want to understand which could be the terminus of the Silk Road. We then can decide whether or not to accept their proposal.”
Geraci ridiculed the alleged danger of the so-called “debt trap” (in English). In order to create a debt trap for Italy, “you would need $1 quadrillion in investments….
“Cooperation in Africa is a key issue for our companies. Italian national interest today is in blocking migration flows, but I believe that there is not enough awareness in Italy yet, about the demographic problem in Africa. The African population will double in the next 30 years, from 1.2 to 2.4 billion persons.”
Chinese investments in Africa “have a return for us Italians because, first of all, it helps to stabilize countries where our companies are active. Furthermore, I believe that it is a duty for an advanced country such as ours, not so much to host those who flee from the African continent, but to help Africans not to abandon own lands. It is the only win-win solution for everybody. To succeed, we must first stabilize the economy and the political situation in the countries of origin. China has the capital for this initial input. We must favor this process, otherwise we will only help a brain drain from Africa and create further gaps for the future.”
Geraci’s mission was preceded by a delegation led by Economy (Treasury) Minister Giovanni Tria, who met with his counterpart as well officials from Chinese funds, including the Silk Road Fund. Tria’s aim was securing financial support for Italian government debt. It has been announced that the Italian central bank will start to build stocks in renminbi.
U.S. POLITICAL & ECONOMIC
S.D. Congressional Candidate Wieczorek: U.S. Needs a Credit System, End Wall Street Looting
Sept. 3 (EIRNS)—In a nearly two-hour televised debate from the South Dakota State Fair yesterday in Huron, the four at-large Congressional candidates faced off, as Ron Wieczorek, an Independent endorsed by LaRouche PAC, took the high road, addressing the serious national, global, and cultural issues America is facing. Wieczorek insisted the U.S. needs to end to Wall Street’s destructive rule, replacing it with a credit system, and following China’s example of building infrastructure and development.
President Donald Trump is coming to Sioux Falls on Sept. 7, according to the state’s outgoing U.S. Rep. Kristi Noem (R,) who is running for governor.
Wieczorek argued that that the country needs the policies of Alexander Hamilton and George Washington, later implemented under Lincoln, Franklin Roosevelt, and Kennedy. In another series of exchanges, he told voters we need to restore the Glass-Steagall Act, return to classical education, and get farmers parity prices. Our young people need to know about real production, not how to shuffle papers.
He repeatedly stressed that no good comes from complaining about symptoms, even terrible ones, such as the deadly opioid and drug plague, the lack of health care, the ruin of family farmers, and disappearance of decent wages; there must be a solution. At several points, Wieczorek explained to the live and TV audience about China’s Belt and Road Initiative. He referred people to the fourfold program he is circulating, presenting policy based on economist and statesman Lyndon LaRouche’s Four Laws. He emphasized again that our children need a classical education that teaches their subconscious to think and solve problems.
Wieczorek’s campaign booth at the State Fair was mobbed afterward, and campaign workers are getting out some 1,000 fourfold fliers a day. Over the last six months, he has printed 20,000 total, and aims to get out 100,000 before Nov. 6. There is tremendous interest. People want to take pictures of his posters, showing maglev trains and technology.
The contenders for South Dakota’s one Congressional seat, besides Independent Wieczorek, are Dusty Johnson (R), Tim Bjorkman (D) and George Hendrickson, Libertarian.
Broadcast live from the Huron fairgrounds, the KSFY-TV moderate asked debate questions ranging from, “What do you think about self-driving Uber cars?” to the “Mueller probe” (Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s operation to overthrow President Trump), to “man-made climate change.” To a question regarding making guns from 3-D printers, Wieczorek denounced the imminent danger of killer computer games that children play and learn how to kill human beings, and demanded they be outlawed. “When I was a kid, we all had guns, but we also had morality and respect for life,” he countered, to resounding applause.
The full debate is posted to KSFY’s website in four parts.
Virginia Sen. Richard Black in Syria: ‘Certain Party’ Wants to Continue the War
Sept. 3 (EIRNS)—Virginia State Senator (and now VIPS member) Richard Black (R) was again in Syria on Sept. 2, where he met with President Assad’s Political and Media Advisor Bouthaina Shaaban. At a media availability after their meeting, Black said the U.S. should work with Syria to reclaim all its territory, and that Syrians have a right to live in peace. Black’s visit and statements received similar coverage in the Syria Times and Iranian state media, IRNA, which cited among its sources Syria’s official SANA news agency.
“Black called on Western states to put an end to the economic sanctions imposed on Syria, holding the consecutive U.S. administrations responsible for the chaos in the Middle East and the destruction in Libya, Iraq, Afghanistan, and Yemen.” Black also said that he “hoped that U.S. foreign policy would shift from harming the Middle East to helping it, and that it would use more diplomacy and less military force,” according to IRNA’s paraphrase.
“The Senator said he feels safe among Syrians, as long as the extremists—who are recruited from more than 100 countries, trained, funded, then set loose by Western intelligence agencies to spread terrorism—are being eliminated,” wrote IRNA.
Like Black, Shaaban explained the universal nature of terrorism, and that it must be fought from that standpoint. Shaaban also said that she was glad to meet with Black, calling him a defender of Syrian sovereignty.
Facebook-Atlantic Council Partnership Censors Veteran British Diplomat Craig Murray
Sept. 3 (EIRNS)—Facebook has censored former British Ambassador to Uzbekistan Craig Murray as a “Russian bot.” Murray has been an outspoken opponent of British regime change operations, and has also exposed the fraud that “Russia hacked the DNC,” which underpins the British Empire coup plot against U.S. President Donald Trump.
In an Aug. 28 blog post, Murray points out that Facebook has outsourced its censorship program to the Atlantic Council. Yes, that’s the same Atlantic Council that did the forensics on the Democratic National Committee (DNC) server and concluded that it was hacked by Russia. (Remember that the DNC has refused to let the FBI do an independent forensic analysis of the DNC server. Of course, the FBI didn’t really insist on it, either.)
Murray writes that the Atlantic Council is funded by NATO and its board includes Henry Kissinger, former CIA heads Michael Hayden and Michael Morrell, and George Bush’s Secretary of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff. The staff person responsible for shutting down “Russian bots” is Ben Nimmo, who has been exposed multiple times for using the most spurious of methods to find “Russian bots.”
Murray points out an example: “Nimmo searches for use of the phrase ‘cui bono?’ in reference to the Skripal and fake Douma chemical weapons attacks. Nimmo characterizes use of the phrase cui bono as evidence of pro-Assad and pro-Kremlin bots and trolls—he really does. Most people would think to consider cui bono indicates a smattering more common sense than Nimmo himself displays.
“It is at least obvious cui bono from Nimmo’s witchfinding—the capacious, NATO- and CIA-stuffed pockets of Ben Nimmo himself. That Facebook allows this utterly discredited neo-conservative charlatan the run of its censorship operations needs, given Facebook’s pivotal role in social media intercourse, to concern everybody. The freedom of the internet is under fundamental attack.” [emphasis in original]
COLLAPSING WESTERN FINANCIAL SYSTEM
President Macri Tells Argentines, ‘Together with the IMF,’ We’ll Resolve Current Crisis
Sept. 3 (EIRNS)—In what some analysts are calling the “Abbot and Costello Show,” Argentine President Mauricio Macri and Finance Minister Nicolas Dujovne addressed the nation today to offer a grim future of vicious austerity to “balance the books,” increased poverty and unemployment, all to meet the International Monetary Fund’s conditionalities for continued aid.
The two speeches followed a tense weekend of non-stop emergency meetings at the presidential residence, an announced axing of 10 ministers, and widespread rumors of further cabinet and other personnel shifts. Dujovne himself tried to resign twice over the weekend, but as he was scheduled to fly to Washington today to meet with IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde and the board of directors, he was told to stick around—for now.
Admitting there is now “an emergency,” Macri took no responsibility for the crisis of recent weeks, which saw a 16% peso devaluation just in a last three days of last week, major capital flight, and financial upheaval. All recent events were due to factors “beyond my control,” he asserted, then promised that “we and the IMF together” will resolve the crisis and help create a “modern” Argentina. Previous efforts to apply austerity reforms gradually have failed, he said. We’re still living “beyond our means.” So now, as difficult as it may be, austerity will have to be accelerated and, as a result, “poverty will increase.” But don’t listen to the naysayers and fearmongers, he warned, and instead accept reality. “The world is watching. This may be our last chance.”
Finance Minister Dujovne then followed, admitting “we made some mistakes,” but insisted “we’re not a bunch of sadists.” It’s just that austerity is necessary to convince the IMF to speed up disbursements of the $50 billion standby agreement, and if it agrees, he explained, “this will dispel any doubts” the “markets” had about a possible debt default. His announced measures include reimposing and increasing taxes on agricultural and manufacturing exports to generate significant revenue; a 2019 fiscal deficit target of zero, further slashing the budget for public works investment, as well as for public utility subsidies (transportation, energy) in addition to squeezing provincial budgets. This will “save” $6 billion. He insisted little can be done to stem the rising dollar since the peso “floats freely.”
On cue, since neither speech had the intended effect of instilling confidence or calming the situation, the dollar today continued to climb, ending the day at 39.04 pesos/dollar, despite a central bank intervention of $100 million.
SCIENCE & INFRASTRUCTURE
Kenya Is Considering ‘Fast-Tracking’ Its Nuclear Plans To Meet Its Energy Goals
Sept. 1 (EIRNS)—Kenya is considering putting in place a law that would allow it to fast track its plan for a nuclear power plant. Nuclear power, the government believes, is needed in order to meet its goal for a dramatic increase in electric generating capacity.
As reported Aug. 30 by Xinhua, speaking to journalists in Nairobi, Simon Kachapin, chief administrative secretary of the Ministry of Energy and Petroleum, said that the nuclear regulatory law has passed the cabinet and will soon be considered in parliament. “The law will provide a framework that will guide and provide oversight for the implementation of nuclear power plants according to international standards,” said Kachapin. Such a framework is a necessary prerequisite to start the process for building a plant.
Kachapin also reported that Kenya is currently assembling all of the necessary infrastructure to begin construction of a 1,000 MW plant by 2022. Studies are underway, he said, on possible sites for the plant.
He emphasized that Kenya needs to have nuclear power to meet its goal of about 30,000 MW of electric generating capacity, a stunning order of magnitude increase from its current 2,400 MW of capacity. The country’s progress in its preparations has been given good grades by the International Atomic Energy Agency. Currently, South Africa is the only country on the continent with an operating nuclear power plant.