EIR Daily Alert Service, FRIDAY, APRIL 26, 2019
|FRIDAY, APRIL 26, 2019|
Volume 6, Number 82
EIR Daily Alert Service
P.O. Box 17390, Washington, DC
- China Will Move Up Its Manned Lunar Landing and Robotic Research Station
- First Detection of a ‘Quake’ on Mars ‘Kicks Off a New Field of Mars Seismology’
- Xi Jinping Holds Bilateral State Meetings Alongside the Belt and Road Forum
- French Dailies’ Supplement on BRI Covers Schiller Institute’s World Land-Bridge Report
- UN Promises To Help Raise $50 Billion for Transaqua Lake Chad Water Transfer
- Construction of First Japanese Bullet Train Outside of Japan Is Progressing Well in India
- Kim Jong Un and Vladimir Putin Hold Lengthy First Summit in Vladivostok
- Foreign Minister Zarif Offers That Iran is Ready to Swap Prisoners With United States
- African Union Extended Sudan Military Council’s Stay by Three Months
- White House Announces Resumption of Trade Talks With China
- New EIR Feature on Midwest Flooding Getting Wide Circulation in Disaster Zone
- European Central Bank President Draghi’s Derivatives Ballooned Italian Debt by 25 Billion Euros
April 25 (EIRNS)—The opening of the Second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation in Beijing today with participation of 37 heads of state and government among over 150 nations represented, should instantly refute every slander against that great initiative, for any rational person. More than that, the Belt and Road and this Forum provide the signature of a dawning new epoch of world history that Lyndon and Helga LaRouche long forecast and worked ceaselessly to bring about for decades. Who else could have forecast that a developing country—China—could have spearheaded such a seismic international transformation barely 40 years after it began to rise from its own ashes with Deng Xiaoping’s reforms? The Belt and Road and China’s miracle should be a source of inspiration to patriots in the United States and every other nation.
As if to drive the point home, China’s space agency announced yesterday that China would perform a manned Moon-landing and build an (initially robotic) research station on the Moon (the latter at its South Pole) within a decade. China’s previous plans placed the manned landing in the 2030s—were they speeded up because of President Trump’s commitment to put a man and a woman on the Moon within five years? China has now reportedly surpassed Japan and Russia in the size of its space program, to become number two, in dollar terms, after the United States. How much more could be achieved in a fully international crash program, in which each country brought in its particular strengths, as the LaRouches have long advocated?
What is required now is that the United States join with the Belt and Road, and join with China, Russia and India in a new world credit system for world agro-industrial development—the New Bretton Woods system for which LaRouche fought for decade after decade, as the 21st century successor to Franklin Roosevelt’s design for the post-World War II Bretton Woods system.
To ensure that that happens, we have to win a kernel of the U.S. intelligentsia—the real U.S. intelligentsia—to LaRouche’s ideas. We have to win an active component of the Trump base to LaRouche’s perspectives for his Four Laws, New Silk Road, and New Bretton Woods. We have to win President Trump himself to this commitment (not necessarily in that order).
This sounds daunting, but, looking back, LaRouche himself accomplished more than this during the last 60 years of his life, when he prophesied and catalyzed this new stage of history which is now opening up before us—as almost no one but Lyndon and Helga LaRouche ever expected that it would.
To do that, we have to think like LaRouche to the extent that we look out through his eyes. What do we see? What did he see in February of 1988?
“Up to a critical point in our lives, we plod our craft and pursue our moral commitments honestly to the limit of our knowledge and strength of will to do so. In that respect, we are all ordinary. Then, one day, to some among us ordinary folk, there comes an experience which we must fairly liken to the New Testament’s account of Christ in Gethsemane. It is not enough to propose, to foster, to support those causes we know to be good. A silent voice speaks to us: If there is no one else to lead, you must do so. We protest: ‘Who am I, and what my poor means to undertake such a mission? Can there not be leaders which I can support, and so fulfill the responsibility in a manner consistent with my pitiable means?’
“Then, in a moment permeated with a special quality of terror, we know that we drink from that cup. What do most ordinary folk, of the sort we were a moment earlier, know of such terror? To know such terror, one must first love mankind, and love truth. One must see mankind as doomed to some horrible consequence, unless a great change is made. The terror is the perception that this necessary change will not occur, unless one oneself acts appropriately to bring it about against all odds. As one drinks from that cup, there is a transformation in the nature of one’s will, and a congruent transformation in one’s state of knowledge.”
(See Lyndon LaRouche’s response to Sollicitudo Rei Socialis, whence the above quote is taken, in “A Strategy of Justice: Reply to the Encyclical,” EIR, March 11, 1988.)
SCIENCE AND INFRASTRUCTURE
April 25 (EIRNS)—Zhang Kejian, director of the China National Space Administration, announced during a speech yesterday celebrating the fourth National Space Day, that China “plans to send a manned mission to the Moon and to build a research station at the Moon’s South Pole within the next decade,” Xinhua reported. This is space agency director’s first official announcement of plans for a manned lunar landing. “Within the next decade” is an accelerated schedule from “the early 2030s,” which had been mooted by lunar scientists. Following the successful landing of Chang’e-4 in the South Pole regions, scientists said that a robotic research station would be built to conduct additional research, in preparation for a manned station.
This is a dramatic announcement, not only because of the accelerated timetable for both the landing and the research station, but because it is the first time China will have two manned missions underway at the same time. The space station, which is scheduled to go into operation in 2022, would still be operating at the end of the decade, at the same time as the Moon landing. These double manned missions would require an increase in not just funding, but also the deployment of manpower, recruitment of astronauts (which is underway), and other resources. It will mean a significant increase in capabilities.
On a related front, China announced today that the maiden flight of the Long March 5-B rocket will take place in the first half of 2020, carrying the core module of China’s Earth-orbital space station. This is an unusually higher-risk approach for the Chinese (and any) space program, as the first launch of any rocket in a new series generally carries a lower-valued satellite or other hardware.
Furthermore, a video clip released yesterday shows the core module of the space station having completed testing. The two science laboratory modules are now being assembled. The station is scheduled for completion in 2022.
April 25 (EIRNS)—For the first time, a seismic event from inside a planet has been detected, on Mars. On April 6, a very faint seismic event, equivalent to a 2.5 magnitude earthquake, was detected by the French seismometer aboard NASA’s InSight lander. The event on Mars “is exciting because its size and longer duration fit the profile of moonquakes detected on the lunar surface during the Apollo missions,” said Lori Glaze from NASA headquarters. Unlike earthquakes which are caused by plate tectonics, quakes on the Moon and Mars are caused by “a continual process of cooling and contraction that create stress,” and eventually causes a break in the crust, NASA explains.
The job of InSight is to penetrate into Mars’ interior and shed light on the thickness and composition of its crust, mantle, and core. Discovering how tremors propagate can contribute to that picture. The April 6 quake, the scientists report, is a start, but was too small to provide much information. They are patiently waiting for “the big one.”
THE NEW GLOBAL ECONOMIC ORDER
April 25 (EIRNS)—Following his meeting today with the Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, who is in Beijing to attend the Second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation, China’s President Xi Jinping has expressed hope to bring the bilateral ties between China and Hungary to a new level. This is one of many bilateral meetings President Xi and Premier Li Keqiang are having with national heads of state and government attending the Forum.
Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte will arrive in Beijing on April 26 and will participate in Xi Jinping’s banquet for the heads of state and government. Conte will have a bilateral meeting with Xi the next day, after the end of the BRI sessions. On April 27 he will meet with Prime Minister Li Keqiang. Meanwhile, Italian Undersecretary in the Economic Development Ministry Michele Geraci has also been in Hungary, where he discussed bilateral trade and the BRI.
In Beijing, Orbán said he had realized as early as 10 years ago that the future of Hungary largely relies on its relationship with China. He pointed out that the Belt and Road Initiative is not a threat, but an opportunity. Earlier, Orbán had met with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and signed bilateral agreements on the establishment of a Hungarian-Chinese cooperation center, on continued partnerships, in sports, on the Digital Silk Road, on setting up a working group to promote free trade, and on exports of Hungarian poultry to China.
PARIS, April 25 (EIRNS)—The major French dailies’ Le Figaro and Le Monde published today a full-page paid supplement from People’s Daily on the Belt and Road Initiative which includes three articles: a larger one entitled “BRI: Nearly Six Years of Achievement”; a second one entitled “One Liaison China-Europe Is Already on Good Rails” and, one last article, about one fifth of the page, is on the Schiller Institute’s book-length report “The New Silk Road Becomes the World Land-Bridge,” and headlined “Everything You Want To Know about the ‘World Land-Bridge.’ ”
The first two articles give fulsome updates on the ongoing major Silk Road projects; the third one, on the Schiller Institute and its report, was written by Ge Wenbo. The item in the Le Mondesupplement states:
“All You Need To Know about the ‘World Land-Bridge’
“Last year, on Nov. 6, the Schiller Institute, an international think tank, published the French version of its dossier ‘The New Silk Road, a World Land-Bridge To Bring Geopolitics to an End.’ The presentation, which took place in the Paris 5th arrondissement municipality, recommends countries to take part in the Belt and Road Initiative.
“Contrary to the analysts on the other side of the Atlantic, often prisoners of ‘geopolitical’ software in which the winner always gains to the detriment of the loser, we try to show here that a new win-win paradigm is not only possible but indispensable. Whereas the New Silk Road must be understood because of the major opportunity it represents for international trade, above all it must be understood, explains this dossier, as a multilateral alternative to financial globalization, a true leverage to restart growth and a chance for peace. Helga Zepp-LaRouche, president and founder of the Institute, affirms that since its launching in 2013, the BRI has shaped the world. The Chinese initiative will have a growing influence over more and more countries and improve the future.”
A photo accompanies the article, showing a container ship at berth, with the caption: “Container ship CSCL Star, with thousands of containers onboard, sailed from Shanghai and reached France’s port of Le Havre a month later. That port plays an important role in the implementation of the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road.”
April 25 (EIRNS)—Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari has brought UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres into the effort to raise the $50 billion needed to finance the construction of the Transaqua project to refill Lake Chad, Nigerian media report. That figure was proposed at the International Conference on Lake Chad in February 2018. Here is one such report from the Nigerian daily Leadership. The newspaper’s reference term for the Transaqua project is “inter-basin water transfer”:
“There is a glimmer of hope for the revival of the shrinking Lake Chad after the United Nations yesterday agreed to help in efforts to raise $50 billion for its re-charge.
“President Muhammadu Buhari revealed yesterday that UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, had accepted to co-chair a special fundraising session to raise $50 billion (or £38.65 billion) for a project to help revive the drought-stricken Lake Chad.”
Leadership reports that President Buhari had written to the UN leader to co-chair the fundraising session with him, which the UN chief accepted.
The response of the UN Secretary-General was presented to President Buhari by the president of the African Development Bank (AfDB), Dr. Akinwumi Adesina, at the State House, Abuja yesterday.
In a statement by his media aide Garba Shehu, Buhari said such a special forum was necessary in view of the size of capital required for the project, which is unavailable to the Lake Chad Basin countries.
“ ‘President Muhammadu Buhari has welcomed the acceptance of the United Nations Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres to co-chair a Special Session to raise $50 billion to fund the inter-basin water transfer from Central Africa to revive the Lake Chad,’ Buhari said in the statement.
“Leadership reports that the Lake, which borders Nigeria, Niger, Chad and Cameroon, has lost 90% of its size due mainly to climate change, leading to fear of famine and throwing the economic life of the 30 million population around it into jeopardy.
“The shrinking of the Lake is also fingered as part of the reasons why insurgency and terrorist activities thrive in the region, with militant groups including Islamic State in West Africa (ISWA) and Boko Haram having their strongholds there….”
Buhari has also sought for Qatar to join the financial effort in an Abuja meeting with Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-thani. Of the 30 million people in the Lake Chad Basin threatened by the loss of the lake, the President told him, half live in Nigeria.
April 25 (EIRNS)—India’s National High Speed Rail Corridor Ltd (NHSRCL), which oversees the Japanese bullet train (Shinkansen) construction project between Mumbai and Ahmedabad, a stretch of 508 km, has called a tender for the country’s first undersea tunnel, connecting the Mumbai underground station at Bandra-Kural Complex with Shilphata in Maharashtra. The tender was called by NHSRCL on April 23 and would involve construction and related civil works for a 20.4 km tunnel. Of that stretch, about 7 km will be undersea, The Weekreported.
The tender which was released on April 23 is for construction of tunnelling works including testing and commissioning for double line high-speed railway using a tunnel boring machine and New Austrian Tunnelling Method for the project, Times of India reported yesterday.
Once built, it will be the first Japanese bullet train outside of Japan. Japan has provided loans for almost 80% of the project along with providing technological assistance. The Mumbai-Ahmedabad bullet train project is slated to be completed by August 2022. It would travel at speeds exceeding 300 kph between Mumbai and Ahmedabad, and have 12 stations in between. As part of the ambitious project, India is likely to pay about $1 billion for acquiring 18 bullet trains from Japan.
STRATEGIC WAR DANGER
April 25 (EIRNS)—Russian President Vladimir Putin and North Korean Chairman Kim Jong Un held their summit today at Vladivostok. Their closed-door meeting, scheduled for 50 minutes, lasted two hours, according to TASS.
During the part of the summit when journalists were admitted, Putin expressed hope that the North Korean leader’s visit to Russia will help settle the situation on the Korean Peninsula. Kim Jong Un conveyed a similar sentiment. The Russian President also welcomed North Korea’s efforts to normalize relations with South Korea and the United States.
For his part Kim said: “I hope that our meeting, Mr. President, would be useful for deepening and developing the traditionally friendly and deep-rooted relations between North Korea and Russia. The situation on the Korean Peninsula is of great interest to the entire international community. I hope that our talks will become an important event to assess the situation together and exchange opinions. …
“I hope we will have a substantial exchange of opinions.”
To which Putin replied: “We will.”
In his comments to journalists, Putin said: “We just had a thorough face-to-face conversation. We talked about the history of our interstate relations, the current situation and the prospects for the development of our bilateral ties. We discussed the situation on the Korean Peninsula and shared our positions on the measures to be taken for the situation to have good prospects for improvement.”
President Putin hosted an official reception for Kim, and the speeches of the two leaders are translated on the Presidential website.
April 25 (EIRNS)—Speaking at the Asia Society in New York yesterday, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif proposed a prisoner swap that would involve the U.S. agreeing to release Iranians awaiting extradition in exchange for Tehran freeing detainees, citing the case of a British-Iranian who holds dual nationality and is being held on espionage charges, Time magazine reported.
“I put this offer on the table publicly now. Exchange them,” Zarif said, stating he has the authority to swap prisoners. On previous occasions, he said he was not able to intervene in the affairs of Iran’s judiciary. However, he made the possibility of any such deal conditional on exchange of Iranians facing extradition to U.S. for sanctions violations, reported Radio Free Europe’s Radio Farda.
Furthermore, in an exclusive interview with Reuters at the Iranian UN mission in New York yesterday, Zarif said he does not believe President Donald Trump wants war with Iran, but that a “B-team,” including National Security Advisor John Bolton, an ardent Iran hawk, and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu could goad Trump into a conflict with Tehran. “I don’t think he wants war. But that doesn’t exclude him being basically lured into one,” Zarif said, Reuters reported.
April 25 (EIRNS)—The African Union has extended the Sudanese Transitional Military Council’s rule by three months, urging the council to hand over power of the country to civil society or be suspended from the AU. With that statement on April 23, the African Union leaders meeting in Egypt extended the 15-day deal it had earlier given the military on April 15, UPI reported.
Meanwhile, the Transitional Military Council held talks yesterday with protest leaders after they had suspended talks with the generals over the weekend. The council said in a statement before the meeting that it was willing to discuss proposals from the coalition of protesting groups for an immediate transfer of power to a transitional civilian government, Asharq Al-Awsat reported yesterday. RT cited an AFP report that following the meeting, three members of Sudan’s ruling military council have resigned, after the council said it had reached an agreement on most demands with protest leaders, who are organizing for a million-strong march to demand a civilian government. Incidentally, the million-strong march has not been called off and people are assembling in Khartoum.
“We have an agreement on most demands presented in the document of the Alliance for Freedom and Change,” said Lt. Gen. Shamseddine Kabbashi, spokesman of the ruling military council, RT quoted him as saying.
U.S. POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC
April 25 (EIRNS)—“At President Donald J. Trump’s direction, United States Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin will travel to Beijing for continued negotiations on the trade relationship between the United States and China. The talks will begin on April 30, 2019. Vice Premier Liu He will lead the talks for China. The Vice Premier will then lead a Chinese delegation to Washington for additional discussions starting on May 8, 2019.
“The subjects of next week’s discussions will cover trade issues including intellectual property, forced technology transfer, non-tariff barriers, agriculture, services, purchases, and enforcement,” read the statement of the White House press secretary on April 23.
According to media reports, Washington and Beijing are edging closer towards an agreement that could end the trade-related dispute between the two countries. President Donald Trump said earlier this month that any trade deal would be “the granddaddy of them all” and “very monumental.” China has also expressed optimism that an agreement could be struck soon.
April 25 (EIRNS)—The April 26 EIR cover story, “Midwest Flooding Is National Emergency; Space Age Mobilization Required” posted yesterday, is already in circulation in the Missouri River Basin disaster zone, still reeling from weeks of flooding and continued high water, on top of the farm income crisis. Receiving it today are staff from the offices of the governors of Iowa, Missouri and Nebraska, who will be meeting in Council Bluffs, Iowa tomorrow, to get ideas from the Army Corps of Engineers on how to stop the recurrence of these devastating floods, as EIR Daily Alert reported yesterday. On April 22, Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds (R) announced the members of her newly-formed Flood Recovery Advisory Board, created by Executive Order to coordinate a comprehensive recovery and rebuilding effort.
The scale of destruction this year has been record-setting in many respects, but the current awful episode is just a repeat of the recent terrible floods in 2011 and 1993. Most emphatically, the flooding disaster is no proof at all of the “global warming” fake science being pushed by the Green New Deal.
As the EIR article states, “There is no ‘natural’ reason for the vast damage now upon the land in the multi-state region, from the Dakotas south through Nebraska, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri and the Lower Mississippi. The Federal ‘Flood Control Act of 1944’ mandated the building of a ‘Missouri River Basin Project,’ to consist of an integrated plan encompassing over 100 dams on the tributaries and mainstem of the Missouri River, plus hundreds of miles of levees, new irrigation areas, navigation and other features.” The full plan (known as the “Pick-Sloan” plan, after its designers) was never built; only partial systems were constructed from 1946-1970s. The article reviews what must be done now, including in the agriculture and financial spheres, such as restoring the Glass-Steagall Act and creating credit, and points out the crucial intervention of Lyndon LaRouche. “Over the last half-century, LaRouche issued study after study, and many mass-circulation reports on the necessity of ‘big projects’ in infrastructure, space exploration, advanced nuclear power, together with the way to create and circulate credit to fund such endeavors.” Now, with President Trump’s Moon-Mars commitment, we have a space-age imperative to carry this through.
In South Dakota today, LaRouche PAC activist Ron Wieczorek, a spokesman for the LaRouche policy perspective most recently in his 2018 independent campaign for his state’s at-large Congressional seat, circulated the new EIR article, along with the petition for President Trump to exonerate LaRouche, among the crowd at his regional livestock sale barn. Wieczorek lives in the southeastern part of South Dakota, in the lower James River basin, which feeds into the Missouri River. Here, and throughout the Midwest—home to the productive capacity for a huge share of U.S. corn, soybeans and livestock output—farmers are already in crisis from five years of income below their costs of production, under the Wall Street/British “free market” system. Wieczorek is among four other LaRouche PAC “Committees of Correspondence” in the Missouri Basin farm states of South Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa and Kansas, actively committed to spreading citizen leadership in the policy fight.
Among the action measures EIR calls for, is an immediate moratorium on any farm foreclosures, given the crisis from lack of both flood-defense infrastructure and of income. A small step in this direction took place last week, in a bipartisan bill introduced into the House of Representatives, titled, “Family Farmer Relief Act of 2019,” which has a companion bill already in the Senate. The bill expands the debt cap a farmer can have, to qualify for Chapter 12 bankruptcy, which aims to keep the farm in operation, raising it from $3,237,000 to $10,000,000. This change reflects the inflation in land values, as well as the increase in size of family operations in recent times, under pressure of marginal returns, and the way cartels have come to dominate purchasing and processing of the farmers’ output.
The bipartisanship involved in the “Farm Relief” bill reflects the urgency and desperation of the situation. Among the co-sponsors are: Democrats Collin Peterson (MN) and Antonio Delgado (NY)—dairy farms are in extreme crisis—and Republicans Dusty Johnson (SD) and Jim Sensenbrenner (WI).
COLLAPSING WESTERN FINANCIAL SYSTEM
April 25 (EIRNS)—According to figures published by Eurostat, financial derivatives contracts bought by the Italian government have produced over €25 billion in losses since 2015. Losses amounted to €4.7 billion in 2018 alone. Derivative contracts were bought by Mario Draghi when he was director general of the Italian Treasury (1991-2001), and it is suspected that they were aimed at cheating real figures for national debt (derivatives allow for posting income immediately to the balance sheet, while moving final payments in the future).
European media make a big fuss about the nominal increase of Italian debt from last year (132.2% from 131.4%), a nominal 0.8% increase. That is mainly due to failed GDP increase as a result of the EU-imposed restrictions on deficit spending.
There is also a terror campaign deploying the claim that under the “populists,” Italy might default and blow up the Eurozone. There are many reasons why this will never occur, the main one being that Italy has a trade and current account surplus.
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