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Schiller Institute/ICLC Conference
Why Americans Should Go There:
|© Stuart K. Lewis
Helga Zepp LaRouche at Labor Day Conference
Well, the good news is that, what Americans think reality is, is not it. And, I'm going to try to give you some imagination today. The good thing is, that the illusions are popping; that what we have been saying, and especially Lyn [Lyndon LaRouche] has been saying about the "New Economy," is now becoming clear. And the "my money" fantasy, the "get rich" fantasy, the shareholder fantasy, they're all popping. Now, this is not a new problem. Such fantasies, as you see (Figure 1), the glutton's paradise: that in Paradise, the baked pigeon flies into your mouth, without any work, and that you have enough apples, and grapes, and everythingyou know, this is an old problem. And you have the American version of it, which you all know, which is the famous Dagobert Duck, who likes best to bathe in dollars and gold coins, and this is a known phenomenon. [Mrs. LaRouche shows a slide of the Walt Disney character.]
All these illusions, as you can see, are deeply ingrained. People believe in these values, really, a lot. These are now vanishing, because you are confronted with an America, where, looking at it from the outside, what you see, is the highest personal indebtedness rate of any advanced country. More and more people going to third mortgage rollovers, just to keep their debt payments going, which is a real time-bomb for the American banks. We have some information, that Greenspan is completely terrorized about the idea that the amount of money Americans have to pay from their monthly incomethe ratio of thisis reaching such proportions, that a whole wave of personal bankruptcies could trigger the collapse of the U.S. banks. It's just one of the many Achilles' heels. Then, you have more and more layoffs: Every day, 5,000 here, 10,000 here; not only in the New Economy, but it now is hitting the real economy. Then, you have the ever-more-threatening situation from the so-called emerging economiesArgentina could trigger a bankruptcy wave of American banks, Spanish banks, other banks. You have an untenable situation in Japan. Turkey is another one of these situations. PolandPoland is completely unable to maintain its bond debt payments.
So, in all of this, people are becoming more and more aware. But the good news is, that there is a global alternative shaping up, namely in the form of the Eurasian Land-Bridge. And, an unbelievable, large number of projectsrailways, highways, water management, all kinds of engineering projectsare being built (Figure 2), and basically giving an impetus to new trade, and many countries are involved in this right now. It's no longer just a program, but the Eurasian Land-Bridgethe infrastructure integration of the entire Eurasian continentis shaping up at a very rapid speed.
Now, Lyn has said repeatedly, and he has written it many times, that the only hope for the United States to get out of the depression, is that the United States becomes an active part of this Eurasian Land-Bridge, and that the United States must support it, and work together with it. That this is the absolute sine qua non, the condition without which it does not function, that mankind can avoid plunging into a new terrible Dark Age. But, a problem: We have to get the United States to actively join and support the Eurasian Land-Bridge.
Now, if we want to accomplish that, we have to overcome several, severe, big problems. One big problem is, that the U.S. mediathe TV, the radio, the print mediathey report absolutely nothing about these developments. And, especially when I come from Europe back into the United States, and want to keep up with the news; and I look what is going on here and there, and I go through the news channels, it is absolutely impossible to find out what is going on in the real world. And, especially the developments around the Eurasian Land-Bridge and the new strategic partnership, which is shaping up between Russia, China, and Indiasomething which the Indian press agency PTI called, recently, "the most important political development in the post-Cold War period": namely, that China has given up its inhibitions, to form a strategic triangle with India and Russia.
Have you read this in the U.S. media? And, I could tell you a zillion other such things, which absolutely were not reported.
The first thing, to really attack, as a probleman enemy operationis that the U.S. media consciously want to prevent the U.S. population from having knowledge about the outside world. And, I can assure youand, I'm not exaggerating this in the slightestthat the amount of control and propaganda tightness in the U.S. media, is no less than that of Radio Tirana of Albania during the Communist times. That is a real problem, because if people are cushioned from reality, in a nice puffy, soft, silk cushionwe know this in California, in particular, or in Florida, where the weather is always beautiful, how could you ever think that the world is in bad shape? The sun is always shining, you know! It is a real problem, and people should become very aware that what they think, and what they get up every morning with, is not what the world looks like.
Now, the second problem, one can call "U.S. isolationism." Now, what is U.S. isolationism? It's a populist impulse, which gives people an extreme sense of unreality. Now, there are different layers of isolationism. You have the sophisticated one, which is the Southern Strategy types, who know a little bit more. But, then, there are their dupes and their lackeys; these are the people, who believe in the Southern plantation-owner mentality, that the world should be divided into some rich folk, who will run things, who own things, who have the privileges; and then the other guys, who work, basicallythey should be slaves. These should be the colored people. And, if you look at it a little bit closer, you find that the affinity between the Southern Strategy/Southern plantation types, and the shareholder value society, is exactly the same thing. Because the shareholder value people, from Wall Street and so on, they believe that the whole world economy should be a plantation, and that all these people, in China, in Latin America, in Korea, they should produce as cheaply as the slaves on the farms, so that people can actually have the profit from it. And it doesn't matter what their living quarters are, or what their health insurance iswho cares about health insurance, in Africa? Whoever heard of such an idea?
Now, the population in the outside world, are essentially looked at as slaves. And, then, you have, naturally, the sophisticated version of this, which are the Anglophile internationalists, like Brzezinski, Samuel Huntington, Kissinger, and so forth.
The problem is aggravated by what Lyn correctly identified as the breakdown of the U.S. education system in the last 35 years. Because, what happened is that, people in the universitieshere you have a typical, American Yale or Harvard University professor, having a typical textbook (Figure 3). And the knowledge about other cultures has collapsed; everything is reduced to donkey-nessdonkey-dom?or whatever the word is. And, the problem is, the knowledge about the outside world is not mediated in universities either.
I'm not making this up: You know, I'm reflecting only discussions we have in Europe, with old Atlanticists. These are not anti-American, or anti-Atlantic Alliance people, but these are hard-core establishment people, who have honored the Atlanticist system for decades, and they notice a complete breakdown of relations between Europe and the United States, because the knowledge of the present so-called elite, about Europe, about values which should be underlying the foundation of the Atlantic Alliance, have just disappeared, because of this phenomenon. And, if it's true for Europe, it's all the more true for the Pacific, for China, for Asia, for Africa, and especially the cultures of these places.
Then, naturally, you have the jet-set. They have no sense of anything, let alone the other cultures. And you have the populist idiocy. The guy who says, "I don't know the rest of the world, and I don't wish to know about it. I don't go there. That's not my life." And, if you talk to a typical red-neck, they say, "Africa? They should all go back there!"
And, then you have, naturally, the American President, coming out of the plane, here (Figure 4). And, this was during his last European tour. And, he says, "Is this Yurp? Yurp? Are all those people Yurpeans?" This was a cartoon by Steven Bell, in the London Guardian, and, as you can see, the opinion of these people about Bush, is not exactly on the highest level.
Then, you remember the famous incident, a while ago, when, during maneuvers in the Persian Gulf, the U.S. bombed its own base. And, this was a joke (Figure 5)maybe they had another error in using a map.
The neo-isolationism is not so dignified. Here you have your typical village idiot, who doesn't know much. Here you have the female version of this; the person doesn't want to know about the rest of the world. [She shows slides of paintings by Breugel.] And, some years ago, I said, that the United States reminds you of the Continent of the Clueless, which was in the time of the D.D.R. [East Germany], this valley around Dresden, where they couldn't get the radio broadcasts from the West, so that they never knew what was going on [and therefore, became known as the "Valley of the Clueless"].
You may be insulted, now, but sometimes a polemic is necessary. And, obviously, I don't mean you, here, in the hall, but I mean these other people who you are trying to organize, and who have these kinds of reactions.
Now, what happened to the American intellectual tradition? Well, Lyn talked about it yesterday, and many times beforethe shift from his generation, during Franklin D. Roosevelt, to the Truman-McCarthy period, and the move from the industrial society to suburbia, from the blue-collar worker's identity, to the white-collar values; the replacement of entrepreneurs with managers, and all the values of suburbia, which went with it.
Lyn makes the point that the Baby Boomersand I just read a figure, that there are 73 million Baby Boomers; these are people who are genuine Baby Boomers, who were born after the Second World War; and then, you have these mixtures, slowly going into Generation Xthey have this problem of denial. And, why do they have it? I mean Amelia [Boynton Robinson] said it: They act out their childhood fantasies. I have never seen this, but Lyn has these stories about Romper Room, and how people have been taught to be childish. And, I can only suggest that there is a new movie out, which is really a hilarious study of acting out these fantasies. It's called, "Best in Show," and it's a persiflage on people who go to the Mayflower annual dog show. And, it shows you how all of them project their different neuroses.
You all remember what was the outlook of the suburbia of the '50s. [Audio: Doris Day singing "Que Sera, Sera." "When I was just a little girl, I asked my mother, what will I be? Will I be pretty? Will I be rich? Here's what she said to me, 'Que sera, sera. Whatever will be, will be. The future's not ours to see. Que sera, sera.' "] All right! Before you get involved too much, I have a new version of this (please forgive me) [she sings]: "Que sera, sera. I don't go, I don't go there...." Anyway. I think we should change the text of this song, because I think we get further this way.
Now, coming back to the more serious problem: Lyn said, if we don't get the U.S. population to support the Eurasian Land-Bridge, which is reality, there is no solution. Therefore, what I want to encourage, is that Americans have to go there; they should go there, through the Eurasian Land-Bridge, both physically and mentally. And, the future is very much ours to see, que sera what we will do.
Now, the Eurasian Land-Bridge, today, is in progress: It's real. It's very advanced. And, therefore, even if some of you already know some of the material I'm going to present, there are many new people here, who have never seen this, so I want to go into some of this material, and show you the evolution of the idea of the Land-Bridge, because it is the history of our movement.
[Video: German ZDF-TV documentary on the "New Silk Road":] Here in the city of Xi'an was the beginning of the ancient Silk Road. Xi'an was a world city, the largest city in the world, the Rome of Asia. Here arrive the delegations from all over the world, to pay tribute to the Emperor, and bring their gifts, and they got gifts in return. The Silk Road became mythical in the West, where such inventions as paper, gunpowder, and book printing came from. The Silk Road started in Xi'an; it went to Duhuang, via the Taklamakan Desert to Samarkand, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Iraq, to Syria. Today, the tradition is celebrated; here you saw the sleeping Buddha, going into Nirvana, as the travellers would pray to Buddha and his pupils, because they knew that the Silk Road they had to conquer, would be extremely dangerous and even threatening to their lives.
[Continuing her narration]: Here we are going toward the Taklamakan Desert. The Great Wall was supposed to protect China from the Huns and the Mongols, and it was extended, so that the caravans of the Silk Road could travel safely to the west. The fortress of Qiao Xiuxua was the last, the symbol of harmony of the Holy Empire, as the Chinese called it. Here, food, as you can see, played a very big role in the Silk Road. In Duhuang, already during the time of Marco Polo, the noodle makers had a tremendous reputation. China, indeed, invented pasta and spaghetti (which you can see here), and Marco Polo stole it. The Italians, naturally, have a different view, but such spaghetti acrobatics, you do not find in Italy.
If you want to have an impression of what difficulties the caravans had to conquer, let's see how the camels crossed there, because the sand dunes created by the storms could be up to 400 meters high. And, the camels were connected by ropes, so they wouldn't get lost in the night or in the storms. Camels have a beautiful aspect to them: They can go without water for two weeks, and they can take temperatures in which human beings would be already dying, even in the Summer in this desert, where the temperature goes up to 158° F (Figure 6).
The Taklamakan Desert is the worst in the world. In English, it means, "Whoever goes in, will never come out." And, basically, here, the Chinese Empire, at that time, ended, and after that, you would enter territories, which were entirely controlled by barbarism, and people were in real difficulties.
Now, the history of the Eurasian Land-Bridge is very old. It goes back long before Christ's birth, and it had many ups and downs. But, it was the issue of development of mankind. It was the issue over which World War I was fought, and there are many things one can say about it. But, the actual history of the present development of the Eurasian Land-Bridge, can be placed on Oct. 12, 1988.
If you go back to the 1980s, in your memory: You remember the Cold War, the Iron Curtain, the two superpowers, which had an overkill nuclear arsenal directed against each other. And, nobody in the West, thought that the Soviet Union would not be there, at a certain point. And, even in Germany, where everybody gave lip service to the need to have German unification, people said, "Unification is the lie of the century."
Here we have the Brandenburger Tor, and this was Lyn standing in front of it, in this famous visit we had in 1988 (Figure 7). Lyn had the extraordinary insight about the axioms underlying the historical process, the long-wave intention of historical phenomena. And therefore, he, with tremendous courage, putting his reputation on the line, gave a press conference in the Kempinski Hotel, on Oct. 12, 1988. [Video of LaRouche speaking:] "Under the proper conditions, many today will agree, that the time has come, for early steps toward the reunificiation of Germany. With the obvious prospect, that Berlin might resume its role as the nation's capital. For the United States, as for Germans, and Europe generally, the question is, will this reunification process be brought about by assimilating the Federal Republic into the East bloc's economy, or economic range of influence? Or, can it be accomplished in a different way?
"In other words, is a united Germany to come into being, as a part of Europe, from the Atlantic to the Urals, as President de Gaulle proposed? Or, as Mr. Gorbachov has desired, a Europe from the Urals to the Atlantic?
"I see the possibility, that the process of reunification, could occur precisely as de Gaulle proposed. I base this possibility, on the reality of a terrible, worldwide food crisis, which has erupted during the past several months, and which will dominate the world's politics, in every part of the world, for at least two years to come. The economy of the Soviet bloc itself, is a terrible, and worsening failure."
Now, we took that video of Lyn and the transcript around to the capitals of Eastern and Western Europe, of the United States, and other places, and basically people took it very, very seriously. Then, exactly as Lyn had prognosed, the economic difficulties in the Warsaw Pact increased. The D.D.R. basically went into state bankruptcy, and at the time when the D.D.R. had its 40th anniversary, on Oct. 6, 1989, the situation was absolutely on the verge of, either going into a bloodbath, or basically going the way it went. Then, on Nov. 9, the Wall came down. And, you remembersome of you remember, and others should knowthat this was a unique moment in history, of the kind which only occurs once in a century. People were joyful. Families fell into each other's arms, with tears of joy. And, this was an opportunity, where one could have made history, and completely changed the face of the Earth, which is exactly what Lyn proposed.
As the documentation published by the German government recently shows, the Bonn government had, in November 1989, no contingency plan for the case of German reunification. But, Lyn, who was already a political prisoner of the Bush Administration, in jail, had a magnificent vision. Namely, to connect the industrial centers of Eastern and Western Europe, through advanced infrastructure, like the maglev train. And the idea of the so-called Productive Triangle between Paris, Berlin, and Vienna, was born (Figure 8). This was the idea that this area, which has the size of the territory of Japan, and encompasses some of the largest industrial centers, in France, Belgium, Germany, Saxony, Prague, Czechoslovakiathat if, one would invest in high-technology advanced infrastructure, one could basically turn this area into a motor. And, then, through so-called "development corridors," namely to link Berlin through infrastructure lines with Warsaw, with Moscow, with other places in the East, where the infrastructurethe maglev train, or the highway, or the waterwaywould be just the arteries for the corridor of about 100 kilometers wide; new cities, new power generation, new industrialization or agriculture (Figure 9). That you could bring this economic motor from the center of Europe, through these corridors into the East, and that way, have an uplifting of the entire Eastern economy.
And, this program, we published for the first time in January 1990, and we got over 1 million pieces of literature out, into the different capitals of Europe, and other places. But, very emphatically, we immediately, from the beginning, combined the idea of an industrial program for the East, with a cultural Renaissance. Because we knew that people had to shed some of their bad cultural, materialistic values, if the program was to succeed.
Now, some of you who were already in this organization remember, that this was a difficult period. Lyn was in jail. And we were under tremendous bombardment. But, we decided that we had to go to the East, to try to change the world, by creating new flanks. So, on Oct. 23, 1990, we went, for the first time, to Hungary, which was still Communist at that time, and therefore, it was not so easy, because we didn't know what would happen. And, the people who had invited me, were the Political Prisoner Association of Hungary, from 1956, people who had experienced how their uprising in 1956 was crushed, by the Communists, and how the West had not helped them. They were fearful; there was a very fearful situation. But, we went there, and presented this program of change.
Then, soon after that, we went to Poland, and then soon many other countries in the East. In March 1991, we had a conference in Berlin, where over 100 economists and politicians from 17 countries participated, and we launched the so-called Berlin Declaration, and appealed to governments, to make the Productive Triangle government policy.
This was followed by a second Berlin conference in November 1991, with over 400 participants from 30 countries, including the republics of the Soviet Union, which was already disintegrating, at this point. And, the idea was for the first time presented, to make the Productive Triangle the cornerstone of an all-Eurasian program of infrastructure development, an idea we presented in the same year to a conference of transport ministers in Prague. In 1992, the Schiller Institute made an elaboration for all of Eurasia (Figure 10). Here you see the three main lines, connecting Eurasia. The old Line A is the Trans-Siberian Railroad, going from Novosibirsk all the way to Europe. A second line from Lianyungang, all the way to Rotterdam. And the third line going both through India, into Indonesia, and also to the Mediterranean.
Now, these ideas, which we, again, circulated widely, intersected an increased interest by the Chinese, who had already built their rail system via the Alataw Pass, which was completed in 1990, and made operational in 1992. This is between China and Kazakstan. In the Winter of 1993-1994, the European Union decided on the so-called Delors Plan, which was exactly the same infrastructure lines as we had presented, except that the Balkans was completely left out [shown in slide], because they already said, it's guaranteed that this Balkan war will stay there for a very long time, so they didn't even bother to put in the railroad lines there.
In December 1994, we had the first Schiller Institute conference on the New Silk Road, where Lyn could participate for the first time, in freedom. And we had many seminars, with VIPs from all East European countries. In 1996, there was the International Symposium on Economic Development of the Regions along the New Euro-Asia Continental Bridge, which actually occurred at our suggestion. We had suggested this to the Chinese institutions, almost three years earlier; and there was a tremendous back-and-forth between Sir Leon Brittan, who didn't want the conference to take place, and us, we pushing for it. So, eventually it took place, and Dr. Jonathan Tennenbaum, Mary Burdman, and I were participating as speakers at this conference, with 34 nations, and many leading scholars from China.
We published the report, which you still can see, the 1997 EIR report on the Land-Bridge, which, again, was circulated around the world to, literally, hundreds and thousands of cities, in the United States, in Western Europe, in Eastern Europe, in Latin America, and we even talked about it in some African places, that such an alternative exists.
Now, there was one important step, in between, which was a trip I took in September 1997, to China, where I made speeches at 12 different economic institutes on the coming global financial crisis. And, I remember, because people said, "Oh, you are very courageous. If you tell us that there will be a global financial crisis, and it doesn't come, your reputation is gone." So I said, "No. Mr. LaRouche has made this prognosis on the following grounds, and it will occur." And, indeed, the Asia crisis, the local expression of the global crisis, erupted in October 1997, and spread to South Korea, Indonesia, and Japan. And at that time, the world financial system was already three times on the verge of a meltdown. And, people recognized, "This man LaRouche really has some knowledge, which other economists don'the is a prophet." And, the countries of Southeast Asia, for the first time, really lost their faith in the IMF, because the IMF had not only not warned them what would happen, but used the moment, when they were weak and on the ground, to kick them and impose structural reforms, which they regarded as absolutely detrimental to their own interest.
Now, this situation continued with the continuation with the global financial crisis, leading to the Russian state bankruptcy, in August 1998; followed by the famous LTCM [Long Term Capital Management] hedge-fund crisis, which, again, brought the world to the verge of a meltdown, and only the concerted action of the 16 leading banks of the world could prevent this.
In this moment, LaRouche called for the creation of a Survivors Club of nations, meaning, that, those countries who wanted to avoid being drawn into this financial collapse, should form an alliance against the dangers of the meltdown, and also the strategic combination of China, Russia, and India, would be absolutely crucial. At the same time, Russian Prime Minister Primakov called for a strategic triangle between Russia, China, and India, but this did not exist at that point.
Already, in 1996, the so-called Shanghai Fivean alliance to deal with border issues, security, defense, and economic cooperationhad formed itself, consisting of China, Russia, and three Central Asian countries, which later was joined by Uzbekistan. They had formed themselves, to organize a reasonable international economic and political order. And, on June 14-15 of this year, the founding of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization occurred, which is one of the most important developments of the recent period.
These countries in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization did that, because they are facing a tremendous challenge: Russia, for example, has still not recovered from the reforms of the IMF and the "oligarchs." China is running a very tight ship, because they have 1.26 billion people. The Central Asian countries are generally poor, and are threatened by very dangerous Islamic fundamentalist insurgencies, all coming mainly from Afghanistanthe Taliban, which was originally an Anglo-America effort, and where, today, 70% of the world's heroin is coming from. But, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization has a gigantic potential: They represent 25% of the world's population, and many other countries are in the process of joining, like India, Korea, IranPakistan has already asked to join.
And, Nazarbayev, the President of Kazakstan, said that the Shanghai Cooperation Organization must rebuild the Silk Road and expand to humanistic and environmental security. "Environmental security," in this case, means eliminating the consequences of the terrible drought, which has hit this area in the last years, among other things. And, these Prime Ministers and Presidents will meet again in September in Almaty, to discuss long-term cooperation, of the 2001-2010 period. The Kyrgyzstan Transport Minister, Dzhumalayev, on June 19, said that the summit decided on the construction of the Shanghai to Paris rail line. The link from Kashi, in Chinese Xinjiang, to Bishkek [Kyrgyzstan], goes through some of the highest mountains in the world.
I'll show you some of the area we are talking about. [Video: Silk Road documentary:] This is a part of the Silk Road, going from Kashgar to Samarkand. We have here, before us, the Roof the World. We have already travelled 5,000 kilometers on the Silk Road. We are looking at the eastern Pamir, the road from China to Pakistan (Figure 11). This is more than 3,000 meters high, and this is basically an area, where the Mongol horsemen gathered for invasions into India. These passes are closed from November on, and these trucks go through some of the most adventurous roads in the world. These are the Karakorum Mountains, which, even in the Summer, have ice. The Karakorum, the Black Mountain, which already Marco Polo said, sent shivers down his spine, because one could hear the groaning of the mountains, before they would drop boulders on the travellers. This is all 3,000-4,000 meters high, so you can get a sense of how difficult it is to actually do these things. ...
The construction of this highway, through these mountains, took 20 years, and it was the largest engineering project since the construction of the Pyramids. Even in good weather, the passage is very dangerous, because there are avalanches. The roads can break away, so drivers drive as quickly as possible.
Here you see, opposite the highway, the old, ancient Silk Road, which was not a real road, but just a pathway, which was very dangerous to go through. But who could manage to get through, would make a gigantic profit.... This is where the Karakorum, the Hindu Kush, and the Himalayas meet. This mountain is called the "killer mountain." It's over 8,000 meters high, and many people who tried to climb it, met their death there, but it's the most gorgeous landscape you can imagine.
Now, we continue from Kashgar. It's the incredible beauty, which strikes you, but it also gives you a sense that it's not a piece of cake to build this Eurasian Land-Bridge.
Now, that was to give you a sense of the ancient Silk Road, and the conditions which people had to master. But, to give you a more optimistic view, I want the next video clip. This is the maglev train (Figure 12), which we are going to build in all of Eurasia, and this is not a fantasy any more. Because the maglev train, which was developed in Germany, and it was about to dieit only existed as a test run in Emsland, because of the insanity of the present political parties in Germanyit was about to die. But, then the Chinese came, especially Prime Minister Zhu Rongji. He travelled on it, and the Mayor of Shanghai; they were convinced that that technology is exactly what China needs. So, they decided that it will be built between Shanghai and the airport, and then, to Beijing. And, in the next ten years, 100 Chinese cities will be connected through this train. And, China and Germany will build this in three countries.
Here, you see the mechanism of the magnetic levitation, which obviously is a tremendous technology. This train can go up to 450 kilometers per hour, and you don't feel the acceleration. Lyn and I travelled on it. You don't feel the acceleration: The train goes quickly to full speed, and you don't feel it; and it stops, and you don't feel it. Even the cows in the surrounding fields are not disturbed, because this train is so quiet. So, obviously, if this train exists from Europe to all of Asia. And also for cargo. I forgot the exact number, but I think from Paris to Beijing, it's like, eight hours. It's a gigantic leap in technology forward, and obviously, this should be spread in Europe, in the United States, rather than going in overcrowded, dangerous airplanes, and if you connect the cities, this is the perfect system for passenger transport, but also for cargo.
When the deal was made with China, that this was now going to be built, the head of the department at Siemens said: This is as importantthe first leg, from Shanghai to the airport, which only is something like 50 kilometersis as important as the building of the first part of the railroad from Nuremberg to Fu@arth, in the beginning of the last century, leading to a completely new epoch.
So, this is what's happening. It is no longer just the Schiller Institute and LaRouche saying we need this, but this is now happening, and this is the result, largely, of our own organizing. And, part of this, is the conclusion of the Russia-China Friendship Treaty, which was concluded on July 15-16, this year, in a summit between Jiang Zemin and Putin. And, this was, without any question, a very important step in the creation of the Survivors Club. And, the Chinese Foreign Ministry said, in that context, that they will further strengthen the cooperation with Russia and India, because they have, on many international issues, similar or nearly identical stands and concerns. This is what the PTI called the most important development of the post-Cold War period.
Now, Jiang Zemin, recently, at the Moscow Lomonosov State University, announced that this cooperation will be strengthened and brought to a higher level.
Now, if you look at some of the principles of this friendship treaty, they announced 40 areas of Russian-Chinese cooperation. That both sides will never do anything detrimental to the interests of Russia and China, both will make fuller use of their potentials, and use the complementarity of their economic systems. They will engage in cultural exchanges, making use of the riches of the long cultural history of either side. And, the Chinese appreciate the great minds of Russia, such as Pushkin, and Confucius is very well liked in Russia. Both Russia and China will bear responsibility for the entire world, and the world needs peace, and people want cooperation. Countries want development, and societies want progress. This is the trend of our time.
Now, we had, in May of this year, an extremely important conference in Bad Schwalbach [Germany], with the title, "The 25-Year Development Perspective of Eurasia," with speakers from Russia, China, India, Egypt, and other places. The Chinese representatives at this conference, said that China will focus on the development of the western regions of China, to uplift the population in the whole country; and, on the Third Land-Bridge, meaning the Afro-Asian Land-Bridge, which will go from Egypt to Hong Kong, through countries "which are booming with people and life." And these countries will include Vietnam, Myanmar, Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Egypt, and, from there, to the rest of Africa.
Now, here you have the crucial link between Asia and Africa, through the Oasis Plan (Figure 13), which is the LaRouche plan to develop the Middle East, mainly through water development, peaceful nuclear energy for desalination projects; and, obviously, here, you have the link: Egypt being the only Asian-African country, with the Sinai belonging to Asia, and the rest belonging to Africa, which gives it a very special bridge role, in this process.
Now, let's look at some of the Silk Road. [Video:] Here we come to a city with a magic name: Samarkand, which is as old as Rome. And, this city excited the imagination, and it was more glorified than any other city (Figure 14). It was called "the golden city," "the most beautiful face the Earth ever turned to the Sun," "the mirror of the world." Here, you see the marketplace, surrounded by two Koran schools, one mosque with cupolas of turquoise. This was called the "jewel of Islamic architecture." Samarkand was the incarnation of the mystique of the Silk Road. Here, you see the door to Paradise, a mosque as the artistic vision of the Islamic Heaven. And, they said, whoever builds a mosque, for him God builds a house in Paradise. This is a tremendous example of beauty and the artistic ability of Islamic architecture. ...
Now, here we come to a place in Uzbekistan, which has been covered up by soil. And, some of the ancient ruins of the buildings of the Silk Road are being unearthed, right now. When the President of Uzbekistan saw this door, this portal, he immediately gave the order to unearth the entire complex. And, the Russian archeologist [on the video] says that in a very short period of time, we will have here, not only a tourist center, but a museum, and the Silk Road will economically completely transform this area.
Now, the old Silk Road went via Palmyra to Damascus. Here, we come to the ruins of Palmyra, which was one of the richest citiesrich like in a fairy tale. And, when the caravans arrived here, people would reach secure land for the first time, since they had left China.
This is a professional story-teller ... and he tells stories about the Silk Road. This is a place in Damascus, and he makes many jokes, so people have a very good time. He's being interviewed here, and he says: We Arabs are very proud of the Silk Road, because this was a great epoch of freedom for the mind and tremendous wealth for the people, and, as it was, it should become again. So, the interviewer says: What is the message of the Silk Road today? And, the story-teller says: "For me, as a story-teller, it's very clear. The people from many cultures and nations must learn to listen to each other and exercise tolerance. That is the spirit of the Silk Road."
Now, at our Bad Schwalbach conference, the Egyptian representative said, that the government of Egypt had just conducted a conference in Port Said, on the Eurasian Land-Bridge, defining the role of Egypt, as the link between Eurasia and Africa. That Egypt is aware of the fact, that this will lead to a total increase in global trade, some of which will go through Egyptespecially through the Suez Canaland it will enhance Egypt's position as a link between Africa and Asia. And, that Egypt is very proud, not only of its ancient culture, but also to be the only Afro-Asian country.
Now, Russia, on the other side, is the only Eur-Asian country, where part of it is in Europe, representing European culture, and part of it is in Asia.
Now, the Egyptian representatives pointed out that the new railway system will go to Sudan, which is presently on a different gauge system, which obviously was built by the British, so that the Egyptian railway system and the Sudanese would not go together (Figure 15). The Egyptian speaker said, Sudan could become a hub, to Central Africa, and from there, go across the great desert to Dakar; another connection from Sudan, to Chad, to Congo, to Ethiopia, Eritrea; another one to Uganda, and Cape Town; and, from Egypt, another line to Libya and North Africa.
This is our program, how Africa should be linked to the Eurasian Land-Bridge. And there is no way, no way that Africa can come out of its present terrible crisis, without such a program. So, people who are concerned about Africa, must learn and study the Eurasian Land-Bridge.
Another speaker, Professor [Yuri] Gromyko, from Moscow, talked about the necessity of Russia to define its mission, as a new science-driver program for Russia, which would revitalize the enormous reservoir of Russian scientists. He said: What we need is the most intensive forms of technological and social and cultural evolution; and where we can study this the best, is: How does this develop under the most extreme conditions of life, such as in the Arctic north of Russia? If you remember the north of Russia, there is presently a gigantic migration, a real slide of the population from the Russian northern territories, which still suffer from the reform program. And, it is urgent to develop new ways of mastering life under these extreme northern conditions. Professor Gromyko pointed out the connection between space flight, and life under such very difficult conditions. He pointed out that both go against the monetarist policies. And, he cited the famous Russian scientist and physical economist, and co-thinker of LaRouche in Russia, Pobisk Kuznetsov, who once told the Politburo of the Central Committee of the CPSU, that there is no point in taking paper money on a space flight. Because it has no life-support functions on a space flight (which I think, is an interesting observation).
Professor Gromyko said, that Russia can be characterized as a northern civilization. And that it is impossible to think of a vision for Russia, without a new program to promote life, under the conditions of the Far North. A very important feature, is the promotion of life above the Arctic Circle, and, there, again, the idea of the development corridors, as proposed by LaRouche, is very important: the building of new science-citiescities which concentrate on teaching and training young people, scientists and so forth. Also, important in this, is [V.I.] Vernadsky's idea of the development of new materials and energy production, in order to provide conditions for high population-density in these areas.
Now, this is the north of Russia, as you can see, the Eurasian Land-Bridge (Figure 16). Since we are here already, we could easily go through the Bering Strait, into Alaska, Canada, the United States, and beyond.
I should just note, that the speeches of the Bad Schwalbach conference, which was an assembly of some of the most important representatives of the institutions of these countries, which do this land-bridge program, again, went out throughout all of Eurasia. And, basically, in Russia, that led to the invitation of Lyn, in June, to the hearing in the Duma Economic Commission, where the Duma had basically invited Lyn to speak on the issue of: How can Russia protect itself from the consequences of the global financial crisis, and what measures should Russia take for its defense? To which Lyn elaborated, the New Bretton Woods principles. And, remember, that Tatyana Koryagina, in that context, had made her famous prediction about the coming dollar crash, and she was very confident that this would happen. And we now know, that the issuing of the gold coin in Russia, the chervonets, and the idea of having a gold ruble, is what gave her this certainty, that the development was going to happen in this way.
Now, gold is playing a very important role, not only in Russia, and in the other CIS countriesthe republics of the former Soviet Union are moving in this directionbut also in Asia and in the Middle East, gold already plays a very important role, as a savings device. And people have a lot of their savings in gold.
Therefore, if you think about all of this, it is a matter of life and death for the United States, to link up with this beautiful development, which is not only a Eurasian Land-Bridge (Figure 17), but, as you can see, is meant to be a global reconstruction program, including every part of the worldAfrica, Latin America, Australia.
Now, obviously, this means that we have to change the economic thinking of the last 30 years of post-industrial decay. And we have to rebuild the agro-industrial base of the United States. We have to rebuild the infrastructure. I think, we have to invest something like several trillion dollars in infrastructure, in the United States alone, to get safe roads, and railways, and so forth. We have to build new cities. I mean, you saw that some of the areas in Eurasia are absolutely not populated, but there are also such areas in the United States. We have to build new farms, factories, education, health systems, and we have to get a mobilization to get the U.S. functioning again as an industrial power. And, it can be done, as Lyn pointed to FDR's example, and we will do it with Lyn, today.
Special emphasis has to be on rapidly rebuilding the machine-tool sectorthe small to medium-size, high-technology firms in the United States, which are the foundation of any modern economy, because, it is there, where the transformation of scientific and technological discoveries, into the higher productivity of the production process, occurs.
America must return to the American System. The United States must resume its role as a primary science- and technology-driver, for the world economy. The U.S. should take a leading role in developing and promoting advanced technologies, for example, for greening the world's desertslarge-scale desalination of seawater, which is urgently needed in North Africa, the Middle East, but also southern California.
We have to go back to the idea of large infrastructure programs, such as in the tradition of the Tennessee Valley Authority. China is in the middle of building the Three Gorges Dam. And an even larger project is, right now, in negotiationsthe famous Brahmaputra River project, which takes the water, which is now causing tremendous floods in Bangladesh and elsewhere; the river, which comes down from Tibet, into this corner, where Tibet, Burma, and the Assam state of India come together. Where the water undergoes a gigantic drop, where gigantic masses of water come down, and the idea is, to build a tunnel beside the river, as a hydroelectric generator of electricity. This is a project bigger than the Three Gorges Dam. And, it is in an area where there is no energy production, whatsoever; so it will transform the whole area, and this is being negotiated between India and China, right now.
Now, we have to revive, in the United States, the U.S. NAWAPA project, which would bring down water, from Alaska and northern Canada, into the Western United States, into Mexico; which would eliminate the severe water shortages in the Southwest of the United States, and create huge amounts of electric power. The NAWAPA project should be integrated with the corridors, running down from the Bering Strait to Latin America. If you do this, you will have a new era of prosperity, and full employment, for all the people in the United States, and in the Americas.
LaRouche's Oasis Plan is the only hope for the Middle East. The U.S. should promote joint projects with several nations of the Eurasian Land-Bridge, in Africa and Latin America, and, this way, create the largest market for exports, where, alone in the area of the Russia-China-India Strategic Triangle and Southeast Asia, you have 3 billion people. Now, imagine how the world will change, with corridors; hundreds and thousands of new cities; transformation of the deserts into land-use for agriculture; you will have forests, gardens. There will be a gigantic demand for capital goods coming from the United States.
The question of who pays? Lyn answered it yesterday, already. You will have gigantic markets, with increased buying power of ever-richer clients. It is good old economic scientific thinking to go this way.
So, we have to undo the gigantic primitive accumulation, which has occurred in the last decade. In Africa, in two generations, we can turn it into a continent with the same living standard as the United States or Europe. And, this will be a much better compensation, than any sum of money for slavery and colonialism, money which is going to be worthless, in any case.
So, if the people of the United States want to come out of the depression, and have jobs, education for their kids, and health care, the Eurasian Land-Bridge is the only way to go.
But, let's look at the question of what foreign policy should be, and what should be the relations to other countries, in the world, and what it should be based on. Think back to the Founding Fathers, and especially John Quincy Adams, who had the idea of having a community of principle of sovereign nation-states, which all work together for the common good, and who define the common progress as the joint goal of mankind. Now, one of my favorite friends, Nikolaus of Kues (Figure 18), whose 600th birthday we celebrate this year, had actually many of the ideas which went into the American Constitution, of inalienable rights for everybody. So, he had the idea of concordantia, that peace is only possible in the macrocosmthe world at largeif all microcosms, meaning all nations, develop their maximum potential. Each microcosm, each nation, must understand, that its best self-interest, is that the other one develops in the best possible way, and vice versa. But, what about all these different cultures? The neo-isolationists complain, "I don't understand them. They are strange. Why should I put my future on something I don't understand?" Or, another version: "Why should I put my future on something I don't control." And, there you can see a little imperialist thinking, sneaking through here.
Nikolaus of Kues said, different nations can understand each other, because each of them has scientists, universal principles, which are true in each culture, and each language. Each has doctors, poets, philosophers, and so forth, who all have universal principles, and therefore, they can talk to each other, and they're true for all. In De Pace Fidei (On the Peace of Faith), one of his writings, Nikolaus talks about an ecumenical basis for peace. He has a dialogue in which representatives of 17 nations and religions come to God. And, they say, we are all fighting each other in terrible wars, supposedly because we all do it in Your name. How can You help us? And, then God talked to the different religious representatives, not as religious representatives, but as philosophers. He says: You are men of wisdom, and you can understand that the error which people make, is that they mistake the words of the prophets for the word of God, and that's how these differences come into being, and that's what causes religious wars. Also, people mistake the difference in custom, as truth. Just because people have a different tradition and a different custom, doesn't mean that the custom is truth, but what you have to think is, the One of mankind, before the Many of the different nations.
Nikolaus taught people the thinking of the "coincidence of opposites," that unity exists before the differentiationthat you have to think from above. You have to think from mankind first, and then go into the unfolding of the difference. This requires, not an Aristotelian method, of contradictionthe famous sentence by Aristotle, where he says, "If two things are opposite, they can't be the same at the same time." Now, Nikolaus says this is ridiculous, because, if you only run around for contradictions, you don't understand anything. But, Nikolaus says, you have to think as if you were on a very high tower, where you look down, and you see the guy who's looking for contradictions in the field; and you see the searcher, the searched, and the process of the searching, which means you have a completely different understanding of the process of finding the truth, than the guy who's running around, blindly, back and forth.
Now, Nikolaus said, that, if we applied the "coincidence thinking" to the relations to other nations, we start from the uniqueness and the universality of mankind, as primary; and then, have the otherness and the differentiation, which follows. If we speak to that, which is universal in the other, we can find easy ways of understanding each other. Nikolaus speaks of the sweetness of truth, that the more you know it, the more your appetite for it grows. If you know the beauty of another culture, you will start to love it. If you start to study, and understand Chinese painting, poetry, and the Florentine art of the Fifteenth Century, you see that, indeed, each of these has something very lovable.
Here you have the Alhambra, a famous palace-city in Granada, one of the most famous examples of Islamic art (Figure 19). This was a high point in Islamic culture, on the Iberian Peninsula, in the Fourteenth Century, and it was built at the same time as the cathedrals in Cologne, Milan, Strasbourg, and the Signoria in Florence. There is a very impressive gallery of fine columns, which surrounded the yard of the famous Lions Palace. ... This is the Comares palace, with the magnificent inner yard; along one side, you have the living quarters of the palace, and at the top and the bottom, public reception and administration halls. This was built around 1400, at the same time, when the Italian Florentine Renaissance really started to develop. The palace has an elegant garden, with a water fountain, with a very rich water technique, which underlines the special symbolic meaning of water in Islamic culture.
So, the dialogue of cultures, is obviously a superior idea to the barbaric conception of Samuel Huntington, of the Clash of Civilizations. Lyn and the Schiller Institute promoted this idea, in many, many seminars, helping the process of communication among the countries of the Eurasian Land-Bridge. Because, if you look at Confucius, Mencius, Chu Hsi, you see that there are very similar ideas as in Christianity, Nikolaus of Kues, Leibniz; or between the poets of the different countriesPushkin, Schillerthere are very similar ideas.
Now, what should a nation do, that did not produce some of these poets, artists, on that level? What should a nation do, that has a lot of them? Obviously, this is not a question of being chintzy, and keeping what you produce for yourself. But great composers, thinkers, poets, are not the national property, but they belong to all of mankind. In the famous Abbassid dynasty in the Seventh and Eighth Centuries, the Caliphs Al-Mansour and Al-Mamoun, sent emissaries to Egypt, Italy, Spain, and Greece, to bring back all the discoveries and cultural goods; and they weighed the discoveries in gold. And, out of this, they made a new renaissance, and then, collaboration between Al-Mamoun and Charlemagne helped Europe to come out of the Dark Ages at the time. So, a small nation, which did not have its own special cultural tradition, or any nation, should just take it all! Take whatever has been produced by universal history, up to this point, and make it your own.
Mankind has come to a point, where we are all sitting in one boat. The crisis is so fundamental, that we have to take the best of all cultures, of all of universal history, re-study and revive it. And, out of this, make a new Renaissance. And, why not take the best from other cultures, and make it our own? Because, it is the very nature of creativity, of which great art is only one expression, that it is generous; that it is not austere.
Classical beauty is universal. What is great and truthful in one culture, can be easily understood in another one. [Video: Chinese boy playing 'cello:] Now, this Chinese boy, for sure, understood the spirit of the European composer, whose piece he played. Lyn said, repeatedly, we would only come out of this crisis, if a sufficient number of people developed to become leaders on the level of the Sublime. Schiller gave a very rigorous definition of what the Sublime is: Sublime is a situation, or a person, where our sensuous nature is physically threatened and in danger to go under; but where our reason proves to be superior. As sensuous beings, we have two drives, one instinct for survival; and secondly a drive for cognition. As sensuous beings, we feel a dual dependency; first, when there is danger to our lives, and secondly, when something prevents us from having an adequate understanding to comprehend reality as it is. Reason allows us to go beyond the dual dependency, in physical terms, because we are not afraid of the danger; in theory, because we can think beyond what we presently know. We can come up with a deeper level of understanding.
Schiller says: In the theoretical Sublime, we experience an increase in cognition. It is a challenge of our power of imagination to go beyond previously existing levels of cognition. Pain or fear is an alarm signal for our instinct of survival. A danger where our mind knows resistance is in vain, leads to fear. But, the inner freedom of the mind, is that from which the Sublime comes. Schiller says: It is very rare, and therefore, it requires an elevation of human nature. This calmness of inner freedom can only come from an inner, or moral security. The security can not relate to our existence, but it must be in respect to the principles we believe in.
So, the theoretical Sublime is what is required to imagine the future of mankind, to feel the pain of what happens to the world and future generations, if we do not correct the present course; of what will happen to the world, if we do not act. Contrary to the propaganda, the United States is not in physical danger from any of these countries of the Eurasian Land-Bridge. What is, therefore, required, is not what Schiller would call the practical Sublime, because your physical existence is not in danger, in this wayeven though, from a larger standpoint, if we have a Dark Age, it is. What is required is, especially, the theoretical Sublime. What is challenged, is your drive for imagination, and for cognition. And, what you have to do, is just take the whole of mankind, the whole world, in your heart. And, be their parents. Be the ones who undo this terrible sickness of the world. And, if we do this, I think, we will look in the most beautiful future anybody can imagine. And, that is a challenge to your imagination, as well.
See also Summer 2001 issue if FIDELIO Magazine
for Dialogue of Cultures, and more on Cusa
See also Physical Economy Page for more MAPS
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