EIR Daily Alert Service, TUESDAY, APRIL 16, 2019
|TUESDAY, APRIL 16, 2019 Volume 6, Number 74|
EIR Daily Alert Service
P.O. Box 17390, Washington, DC 20041-0390
EIR Daily Alert
April 15 (EIRNS)—The above question is not merely a matter of speculation, or of personal opinion, but an existential challenge within the context of universal history. Never in the modern era has the human race been closer to breaking the power of Empire—from the Roman Empire, to the Byzantine, to the Venetian, and to the Anglo-Dutch Empire infecting the world still today. The U.S. President has demonstrated the courage to reject the “special relationship” with the British, and to declare the urgency and the necessity of building friendships with China, Russia and the other great cultures of the world, to end the vile regime-change wars of conquest and destruction, and restore the historic dedication of the nation to scientific and technological advancement of the productive forces, both on Earth and in space.
And yet, we are also experiencing a chaotic collapse of culture across the trans-Atlantic region, as large portions of the population have succumbed to despair, with suicides and drug addiction striking every community; with youth brainwashed into campaigning against human progress based on fake pseudo-science predictions of catastrophe and extinction—not from nuclear war, but from progress itself. And the British and their neoconservative assets in the United States are frantically trying to stop President Donald Trump’s effort to build friendships with Russia and China by provoking war—any war, be it in Venezuela, Iran, or the South China Sea—aimed at making nations “take sides,” and maintaining the imperial divisions of the world.
Lyndon LaRouche warned that this moment would arrive, and that when it did, there must be a leadership available which addressed the whole person, and the whole world. There can be no political and economic solution which does not at the same time address the scientific dimension and the cultural, artistic nature of the creative process in each and every human being. The new Moon-Mars mission announced this month by President Trump and NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine, to be carried out in full partnership with the other nations of the world, is the model for the scientific unity of effect in the world as a whole, lifting the spirit of every human being to see man in the universe, not bound to the Earth. But the cultural domain has no champion, as yet, other than this Schiller Institute, founded by Lyndon and Helga LaRouche precisely to address this world-historic question. This must be taken up as an equally urgent task by all men and women of good will.
China Daily on April 13 observed that, “With an increasing number of Chinese people, especially youngsters, getting addicted to watching short video clips on their smartphones, reading seems to have become a dying hobby. Books are not only the most powerful source of knowledge, they also open people’s minds to new, innovative ideas and give flight to their imagination.”
And how much worse is this phenomenon in the West, where what is called “entertainment” is dominated by musical and artistic ugliness, violence and pornography?
The Schiller Institute is sponsoring Memorials for Lyndon LaRouche on several continents, with the focus being the aesthetical education of man, the celebration of beauty and genius, both to honor LaRouche, but also to inspire people of all nations and all faiths to join the effort to produce, from this crisis of humanity, a renaissance of the human spirit, dedicated to the scientific and cultural development of all mankind. This is necessary, and it is entirely possible, in this moment of historical decision.
U.S. POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC
April 15 (EIRNS)—In an opinion piece published April 12 in The HillConstitutional lawyer Alan Dershowitz remarks that, in his view, there is really no difference between the case of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and the 1971 case of the New York Times publication of the Pentagon Papers, which had been provided by Daniel Ellsberg.
If, in 1971, the Times could publish the Pentagon Papers “knowing they included classified documents stolen by Rand Corporation military analyst Daniel Ellsberg from our federal government, then indeed WikiLeaks was entitled, under the First Amendment, to publish classified material that Assange knew was stolen by former United States Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning, from our federal government.”
Thus, if Assange were charged with espionage, Dershowitz argues, or any other crime just for publishing the Manning material, “this would be another Pentagon Papers case with the same likely outcome.” While the government might try to argue that the New York Times is “more responsible” with its publications than WikiLeaks, the Constitution doesn’t distinguish between degrees of responsibility, Dershowitz explained.
Prosecuting Assange simply for publishing classified material will likely fail, however, so prosecutors have decided to charge him with a different crime of conspiracy—to help Manning break into a federal government computer to steal classified material. Even this, however, is “factually weak,” Dershowitz says, and may not be sufficient for an extradition request to be granted. There are may “ifs” in this case, however, which will play out in coming days and weeks.
April 15 (EIRNS)—President Donald Trump and former President Jimmy Carter had a phone conversation over the weekend, discussing relations with China.
According to a tweet by Emma Hurt from NPR’s Atlanta affiliate, Carter commented on his discussion with Trump while speaking at Sunday School at his church in Plains, Georgia, where he said that during their telephone conversation, the U.S. President was rightly concerned that “China is getting ahead of us.”
“Carter said that’s true. He suggested maybe it’s because China hasn’t been spending money on war like the U.S. They haven’t been at war since we normalised diplomatic relations. He pointed out that of 242 years of existence, the United States has been at peace for only 16 of them,” Hurt tweeted.
The U.S., Carter said, “is the most warlike nation in the history of the world,” because it seeks to impose its values on the world. China, on the other hand, is investing its resources in such projects as high-speed rail. “How many miles of high-speed rail do we have in this country,” he asked, according to NPR. He estimated that the U.S. has wasted about $3 trillion in U.S. military spending, while “China has not wasted a single penny on war, and that’s why they’re ahead of us, in almost every single way.
“And I think the difference is if you take $3 trillion and put it in American infrastructure, you’d probably have $2 trillion left over. We’d have high-speed railroad. We’d have bridges that aren’t collapsing. We’d have roads that are maintained properly. Our education system would be as good as that of, say, South Korea or Hong Kong.”
The former President said he thought President Trump had called him in response to a letter Carter had written him on relations between the U.S. and China, the Washington Examiner reported. According to The Hill, citing the White House, Trump said he had received a “beautiful letter” from Carter, about the administration’s ongoing trade negotiations with China. The White House said they discussed China and “numerous other topics.”
STRATEGIC WAR DANGER
April 15 (EIRNS)—On April 11, during a hearing of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) clashed with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on whether the Trump Administration thinks its recent classification of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) as a foreign terrorist organization (FTO) gives it the authority to go to war with Iran. Saner circles in Washington have expressed concern that neocon elements inside the administration are trying to use the FTO designation to prepare the groundwork for military action against Iran.
When Senator Paul asked Pompeo whether he considered that the 2001 Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF), which allowed the U.S. to fight entities responsible for the 9/11 attacks, also included Iran, Pompeo punted, saying he’d prefer “to defer to lawyers” on that issue. But, he continued, “there’s no doubt there is a connection” between the Iranian government and al-Qaeda, which was involved in the 9/11 attacks.
“They have hosted al-Qaeda, they have permitted al-Qaeda to transit their country. No doubt, there is a connection between the Islamic Republic of Iran and al-Qaeda. Period. Full stop.”
Paul corrected Pompeo on the fact that there is no anti-West alliance between the Iranian government and Sunni extremists and that, on the contrary, Iran “actually would just as soon eradicate Sunni extremists and have actually evicted quite a few and imprisoned quite a few, so I don’t think that dog hunts very well.” But, Paul continued, “I am troubled that the administration can’t unequivocally say that you haven’t been given power” to have war with Iran. “I can tell you explicitly, you have not been given power or authority by Congress to have war with Iran, and in any kind of semblance of a sane world, you’d have to come back and ask us before you go into Iran…. If you want a war in Iran you have to come to us. It’s the way the Constitution was written. This is our history.”
Scott Ritter, a former UN weapons inspector in Iraq, is one of those concerned about the implications of designating the IRGC as an FTO. In an article published in the American Conservative April 11, “America Just Declared War on Iran and Nobody Blinked,” Ritter warns of the dangerous consequences of this action, which, he warns, shreds “the prior truce” and puts the lives of thousands of U.S. service members at risk.
April 15 (EIRNS)—Investigative Journalist Max Blumenthal, writing on his website, The Grayzone, on April 13, reports that the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) sponsored a private meeting on April 10 entitled “Assessing the Use of Military Force in Venezuela.” Blumenthal got his hands on the attendance list, which he published, and confirmation from two people listed on it that the meeting actually occurred, although they refused to discuss any of the content.
“Among the roughly 40 figures invited to the off-the-record event to discuss potential U.S. military action against Caracas were some of the most influential advisors on President Donald Trump’s Venezuela policy. They included current and former State Department, National Intelligence Council, and National Security Council officials, along with Adm. Kurt Tidd, who was until recently the commander of U.S. SouthCom,” Blumenthal writes. “Senior officials from the Colombian and Brazilian embassies like Colombian Gen. Juan Pablo Amaya, as well as top D.C. representatives from Venezuelan coup leader Juan Guaidó’s shadow government, also participated in the meeting.”
Blumenthal doesn’t explain how he found out about the meeting in the first place, but reports he got confirmation of it from Sarah Baumunk, a research associate at the CSIS Americas Program, who was listed as a participant.
“We talked about military options in Venezuela. That was earlier this week though,” Baumunk told him. Also confirming the meeting was Santiago Herdoiza, a research associate at Hills & Company, who was also listed as an attendee.
“I’m sorry, that was a closed meeting. Good evening,” he said when Blumenthal asked him for details.
Writes Blumenthal, “The CSIS check-in list not only confirms that the Trump Administration and its outside advisors are mulling options for a military assault on Venezuela; it also outlines the cast of characters involved in crafting the regime-change operation against the country.”
Few of those listed as attendees are well known to the public. Included was rabid neocon Roger Noriega, “A veteran of the Iran-Contra scandals and regime-change operations from Haiti to Cuba, where he plotted to sabotage U.S. efforts at rapprochement—‘Stability is the enemy and chaos is the friend,’ he said—Noriega has been at the center of Washington’s efforts to impose its will on Venezuela,” wrote Blumenthal.
Blumenthal provides profiles of about a dozen of those on the list, including representatives from the Colombian Embassy; current and former officials from the State Department and its USAID; representatives from Juan Guaidó’s opposition party, who were trained years ago by the National Endowment for Democracy’s “color revolution” apparatus; and various think tankers who have been at the center of operations against Venezuela for quite some time. Also represented on the list, were the NED’s International Republican Institute and the Inter-American Dialogue.
April 15 (EIRNS)—Khalifa Haftar, leader of the Libyan National Army, met with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi in Cairo yesterday, as the fighting between the Haftar’s LNA and the forces of the UN-backed Government of National Accord intensified. Egyptian daily Al Ahram, citing a statement from the Egyptian Presidential office, reported that the two men, along with Egyptian intelligence chief Abbas Kamel, discussed the latest developments in Libya, and Egypt’s keenness to see unity, stability, and security in its neighboring country, presidential spokesperson Bassam Rady said. During the meeting, el-Sisi affirmed Egypt’s support for the efforts to combat terrorism and extremist groups and militias in order to achieve security and stability for all Libyan citizens throughout Libyan territory, to establish the foundations of a stable and sovereign civil state.
According to Asharq al Awsat, Haftar’s office issued a brief statement, saying that he discussed with el-Sisi “several issues of joint interest, particularly counter-terrorism.”
April 15 (EIRNS)—In his now-concluded tour of four Ibero-American nations—Chile, Peru, Paraguay and Colombia—Secretary of State Mike Pompeo truly did “lose his mind,” as China’s ambassador to Chile put it appropriately (see following item). Billed as garnering support for Venezuela’s synthetic “interim” President Juan Guaidó, the trip was at the same time a rampage against China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), which is expanding rapidly in the region.
Pompeo ended his trip in Cucuta, Colombia where he swaggered up to the border with Venezuela, and in a pathetic imitation of Ronald Reagan in 1987 demanding that Gorbachev “tear down” the Berlin Wall, bellowed to President Nicolas Maduro to “tear down the barriers” and let in humanitarian aid.
Every public comment and press interview was filled with Pompeo’s invective about China’s “malign intent,” “predatory lending,” and the dangers of Huawei’s technology, culminating, in his April 14 interview with Peru’s El Comercio, with the claim that South America was finally rejecting “this idea of a totalitarian, Orwellian state of communism” offered by China and Russia, and embracing instead the “glorious” free-market and democratic ideals.
One might question how “glorious” it appeared to nations such as Chile and Peru which, while members of the U.S.-led Lima Group, maintain a very positive and mutually-beneficial commercial and political relationship with China and the BRI.
When El Comercio reminded Pompeo that China is Peru’s largest trading partner, asking whether the U.S. sought to “compete” with China and Russia in South America, Pompeo said of course the U.S. welcomes competition “in free markets openly and transparently.” But, he intoned, South American governments must understand that China is just a “pretend friend,” which in “bankrolling” the Maduro government had “precipitated and prolonged the crisis in that country.” By intervening in Venezuela, he warned, China and Russia are destroying the “sovereignty of a South American nation … and the U.S. is prepared to help those countries recognize that threat and to offer alternatives to it.” What alternatives?
Pompeo had the audacity to claim that China’s “predatory lending and debt diplomacy reverse positive advances in the area”—quite a delusional statement given that the only “positive advances” in the region are the result of China’s investments in the context of the Belt and Road Initiative.
April 15 (EIRNS)—Responding to U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s wild attacks on China during his recent tour of four Ibero-American nations, China’s ambassador to Chile Xu Bu, told the Chilean daily La Tercera that “Pompeo has lost his mind and gone too far.”
Xu sharply explained that the U.S. “has not made substantial contributions to the economic development of Latin American countries,” yet attacks China for doing so. Mr. Pompeo is a hypocrite, he went on, pointing out that Chinese investment in Chile has brought “tangible benefits to the development of the Chilean economy.”
An opinion piece published in Global Times April 14, under the headline “Latin America Needs Development, not Zero-Sum U.S. Games,” develops this argument clearly, warning that any attempts by Washington to “restructure” its “backyard” are doomed to fail, as they are not in line with the political or economic realities of the region. The fact is, says author Li Qingqing, “The U.S. is turning a deaf ear to the successful China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative in Latin America.” China is only building development projects in the region, none of which “targets the U.S.” Isn’t it the case, he asks, that building highways and ports in the region could also benefit the U.S.? Contrast this, Li offers, with the U.S.’s aggression in the South China Sea, China’s own “backyard.”
For all countries in the region, “development is now the top priority,” writes Li; several countries have signed cooperation agreements with China or joined the BRI. “Development, instead of picking sides or playing geopolitical games, is the biggest problem to be resolved for Latin American countries. Latin American people know what is good for them. China’s investments and projects will benefit the region, and no amount of Washington’s coaxing will change the facts. The U.S. should stop playing a zero-sum game and focus on Latin America’s development, if Washington really regards the region as ‘its backyard.’ ”
In his briefing today, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang responded that Pompeo’s accusations about China’s involvement in Venezuela, “are irresponsible and nonsensical…. I am sure Latin American countries are fully capable of telling a true friend from a false one who is ignoring rules and spreading chaos…. A lie will remain a lie, even if repeated a thousand times. Monsieur Pompeo might as well take a break.”
April 15 (EIRNS)—Russia’s aluminum giant RUSAL signed a letter of intent with U.S. Braidy Industries Inc. to join the latter’s efforts to build a state-of-the-art flat rolled aluminum plant in Ashland, Kentucky, TASS reports, citing a RUSAL press release. According to the agreement which should be finalized in the second quarter of this year, RUSAL will have a 40% share, while Braidy Industries’ will have 60%. Financing will be sought by approaching financial markets after signing the letter of intent. RUSAL will invest $200 million.
RUSAL was originally under U.S. sanctions because its majority owner Oleg Deripaska was targetted by the sanctions. When Deripaska lowered his share holding from 70% to below 50%, the sanctions on the company were lifted in January 2019, which allowed the project with Braidy to go forward.
The rolling mill’s annual design capacity will be 500,000 tons of hot rolled band and 300,000 tons of fully finished cold rolled products. This will be the widest U.S.-based cold rolling mill with a width of 104 inches, the company says.
“The output from the mill will aid towards rebalancing the anticipated deficit of the auto body sheet in the U.S. market,” according to RUSAL.
RUSAL will supply aluminum in slab alloys as well as a primary metal for the new rolling mill from its new Taishet aluminum smelter, currently under construction in Siberia’s Irkutsk Region.
“Delivering value added products (VAP) to the new Kentucky mill is consistent with RUSAL’s commitment to increase the share of its VAP offerings as part of the company’s total production and sales,” RUSAL said in its release.
“The joint project with Braidy Industries is an excellent opportunity for RUSAL to expand the company’s diverse expertise in one of the key areas of aluminum downstream products. It will also reinforce the company’s presence on the strategic market,” it states.
Both companies will be also supplying technology to build a state-of-the-art aluminum mill which will be first such aluminum plant built in the United States in 35 years and will use prime aluminum and not scrap. The average age of aluminum mills in the U.S. is 70 years. Covering more than 2 million square feet, the mill will create 600 new jobs.
Braidy Industries manufactures aluminum alloys for automobile and aerospace industries and unites scientific and technical companies Veloxint and NanoAl. RUSAL is the world’s second largest aluminum producer after China.
THE NEW GLOBAL ECONOMIC ORDER
April 15 (EIRNS)—Iraqi National Security Advisor Faleh al-Fayyad landed in Damascus yesterday, to discuss with Syrian President Bashar al Assad important matters in the relations between the two countries. During the meeting, Assad “asserted that enhancing relations between the two countries serves the interest of the two brotherly peoples to complete the elimination of terrorism’s hotbeds on one hand and in a way that would serve their common interests, and break fabricated hurdles imposed between them on the other hand,” reported the state news agency SANA. In turn, al-Fayyad affirmed that Syria’s strength and its victory over terrorism are a victory for Iraq also, and vice versa, any military achievement by the Iraqi side comes in the interest of Syria’s stability.
Al Fayyad’s discussions in Damascus are just the latest in Baghdad’s diplomatic initiatives involving Syria and Iran, and also Saudi Arabia, in an effort to calm the region by seeking mutually beneficial relations among the region’s powers.
In Baghdad, Iraqi Foreign Minister Mohammad Ali al-Hakim denounced President Donald Trump’s proclamation recognizing Golan Heights as Israeli territory. “U.S. President Trump’s proclamation on Golan is unilateral, and it violates the international legitimacy. Iraq doesn’t recognize it,” al-Hakim said during a meeting in Amman with the foreign ministers of Jordan, Greece, and Cyprus, SANA reported separately.
The day before the meeting in Damascus, Sputnik, citing news website al-Sumeria, reported that the Iraqi Republican Railways Company had announced that it would be seeking talks with both Iran and Syria on extending a railway connection from the Shalamcheh region in Iran to Basra in Iraq, and from there, on to Syria. The purpose of the project is to link the Persian Gulf with the Mediterranean by means of a transnational railroad connecting the three states, Sputnik reports.
SCIENCE AND INFRASTRUCTURE
April 15 (EIRNS)—China will start generating power with fusion in 2040, the Song Yuntao deputy director of the Institute of Plasma Physics (IPP) said April 11, reported Reuters on April 12. While there are challenges, Song Yuntao said, and there are critics who say it can’t be done; while some technical challenges are immense, he is confident China will start generating power from an experimental reactor around 2040.
The IPP Song said, has been awarded 6 billion yuan ($893 million) for the next experimental tokamak, and new construction plans are underway. (That was the cost of Experimental Advanced Superconducting Tokamak, or EAST, the world’s first superconducting tokamak.) “Because we have a lot of technology now, a lot of challenges in plasma physics have been overcome, and I think this will speed up the entire process,” stated Song.
April 15 (EIRNS)—Although it is not totally clear whether they are for or against extinction, several thousand young dupes swarmed into five targetted intersections in London today under the auspices of the “Extinction Rebellion.” This motley crew first made its appearance on April 1 when a dozen of them invaded the gallery at the House of Commons, stripped down to loin cloths, with writing on their breasts and chests warning of catastrophe if the human race didn’t stop production of carbon, and targetting April 15 as a day for widespread action. (Piers Morgan captioned under its photo of the dirty dozen’s backsides: “A bunch of arses in the Parliament.”)
Today, these misguided youth protested the “criminal inaction” on climate change. Cofounder Gail Bradbrook stated: “When civilization collapses it gets as far as cannibalism.” They claim they are sponsoring rallies in at least 80 cities across more than 33 countries, demanding governments “take decisive action on the climate and ecological emergency.”
Among their supporters: the former Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, Yoko Ono, American actor Willem Dafoe, and various academics, pseudo-scientists and celebrities.
April 15 (EIRNS)—Greta Thunberg, the pathetic teen who has been used to peddle the green fascist hysteria, will be in Strasbourg, France, at the European Parliament, on Thursday April 18, at a meeting on climate change; April 16 in the Italian Senate; and April 19 Good Friday at the Vatican. The Vatican has not confirmed Thunberg’s presence at the Pope’s audience, nor a private meeting. Pope Francis’ satanic encyclical Laudate Si’ provides full support for the lie being pushed by Thunberg and her controllers that climate change is caused by human industrial development.
A rally for Thunberg has been organized in Rome’s Piazza del Popolo by the “Fridays For Future Roma” association, which has set up a stage, with lights and sound equipment powered by bicycles. Some 128 slaves will ride as many bicycles connected to a generator to produce electricity for the event. In the old days, humans used oxen.
Thus, Gretinism will overshadow the celebrations for Good Friday, turning the important Christian holiday into a pagan celebration.
|Reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 1-571-293-0935|