Sputnik Interview with Helga Zepp-LaRouche
on the Schiller Institute BRICS Petition
The following is the full text of Helga Zepp-LaRouche's 20-minute interview with Radio Sputnik on July 6, 2015.
ESTELLE WINTERS, host for Radio Sputnik: Well, to discuss this, I'm now joined live on the line by the founder of the Schiller Institute, the initiator of the petition, Helga Zepp-LaRouche. Thank you very much for joining us here at Radio Sputnik.
May I ask you first of all, how did you come up with the idea of initiating such a petition?
HELGA ZEPP-LAROUCHE: Well, I think first of all, geo-politics was the reason for two world wars in the 20th Century; and right now, if it would come to a third world war with thermonuclear weapons, it would lead to the extinction of mankind. So, therefore, the key question is, how can we overcome the thinking of geo-politics by establishing a New Paradigm? A New Paradigm which starts with the common aims of mankind.
The way to look at it is not from the standpoint of present interest of one country or a group of countries, but how can we define the future of humanity. Where do we want to be in 100 years from now? Do we want to be extinct, or do we grow up as a human species? I can tell you that the philosophical basis for this idea comes from a philosopher who is very well known in Russia, by the name of Nikolaus Cusansky[ph], who had the idea of thinking on the level of the Coincidentia Oppositorum -- the coincidence of opposites -- which is a method of thinking which informed very much Vladimir Vernadsky. And Vernadsky called Cusansky the "divine Cusanus", and that is really the idea; that we have to move to a completely different kind of thinking about the one humanity. And from that standpoint, try to solve all the conflicts of the here and now.
WINTERS: Why do you think cooperation with BRICS nations so important for sustainable development of the United States and Europe?
ZEPP-LAROUCHE: Well, the reality is that since the Fortaleza Summit last year in Brazil, the BRICS countries have started to build a completely new system of economics; of economic cooperation. Of a new financial system signified by the AIIB, the new development bank, the Shanghai Cooperation Bank, and similar new financial institutions, which deliberately said "No" to the casino economy of the trans-Atlantic system; and deliberately want to only finance the real economy, infrastructure, and things which are in the common good of the people. So, given the fact that the trans-Atlantic financial system is completely bankrupt -- and that will show in the aftermath of the courageous Greek vote in the referendum -- that the trans-Atlantic system is bankrupt and could explode at any moment. Because it's not just the Greek debt which hangs on it, but it's the entire international derivatives; which amounts to probably around $2 quadrillion. So, the only solution would be that the trans-Atlantic countries go on the same kind of financial and economic policy like the BRICS, which would be possible if there would be a European debt conference, eliminating all the useless, worthless debt of the derivatives. And then go for a global Glass-Steagall separation of the banks in the tradition of Franklin D Roosevelt. That was the key measure how Franklin D Roosevelt got the United States out of the Depression in the '30s. And right now if the United States would take the leadership in going back to Glass-Steagall, and there are many important people in the Congress like Martin O'Malley, who is a Presidential candidate, who is campaigning for the immediate re-introduction of Glass-Steagall; then there would be a platform for the United States and the European nations to cooperate with the BRICS countries in building the New Silk Road, building the cooperation between the Eurasian Economic Union and the New Silk Road. And that could be the kernel of a new world economic order, which would be in the benefit of all participating nations. As the Chinese President Xi Jinping has always emphasized that we have to go to a win-win cooperation; and this idea of a win-win cooperation is the way to overcome geo-politics. And that is the key idea behind this BRICS resolution.
WINTERS: And tell me about this petition; you're convinced that it's going to be, that it will make a difference?
ZEPP-LAROUCHE: Oh yes, because we are using it to make international outreach. We are contacting business leaders, politicians, mayors, city councils, to inform them that the BRICS system is an alternative system of economic cooperation. Because the western media have not really reported objectively about what is the policy of the BRICS; and therefore, people don't know, because the only articles which you can read are like "Putin is a dictator", that Xi Jinping is trying to replace American imperialism with Chinese imperialism, and such nonsense. So, people don't have a true idea that the BRICS countries represent a completely new model of political relations among major nations, which is also open to any other nation in the world. So my biggest hope would be, that the BRICS countries issue, at the BRICS summit, some kind of call, an outreach to the rest of the world to join that model. Because I think that something very urgently has to be done to bring the world away from the present brinksmanship policy, which could really go completely wrong and lead to the extinction of us all.
So, what we are doing with this petition is to make sure that people know about the BRICS model; that we know there are enormous economic benefits for them, if they would cooperate. And it's not just the BRICS countries who need a new economic approach; if you look at the European countries, all of southern Europe is really collapsing as a result of the vicious financial fascism of the Troika. In the case of Greece, it has destroyed one-third of the real economy, but the situation in Italy, Spain, Portugal is not much better. So these countries urgently need the extension of the New Silk Road, the Eurasian LandBridge into southern Europe to have a real program of reconstruction and economic build up. And the United States is not in such a great condition, either; they urgently would need a transcontinental fast train system, of the type like China has been building -- they built 18,000km of excellent fast trains. And the United States would greatly benefit if they would say, "OK, let's go back to an FDR approach" like the New Deal, the Tennessee Valley Authority approach; build infrastructure in their own country. And that way we could all join hands and say, "Let's move beyond the danger coming out of geo-politics; and let's join hands to build a future for humanity as a whole."
WINTERS: Very quickly, were you surprised that 2000 people signed this petition?
ZEPP-LAROUCHE: No. Actually, I want to qualify that number of 2000, because I think 500 of them represent very important institutional people; so it's not just single individuals. But if you look at the list of the New Paradigm Schiller Institute, that common website, you find the signers there. And you will see that it's from a very broad range of people internationally who represent extremely important institutions. Then we also have so-called ordinary citizens who are signing it; and they are equally important. But I think what we want to do with this petition is to build an opposition of people who realize that it is much more in their interest to cooperate with Russia, China, India, Brazil, South Africa, rather than having a confrontation with NATO against Russia and China. So, I think it would be very good if the listeners of this program would help to spread this resolution; make it known, so it can become a groundswell of people who say, "No, we need a new paradigm," and this is an historical moment in the history of mankind, where we have to absolutely prove that we, as a species, are morally fit to survive. And I think the idea of having a just new world economic order is exactly the way to go.
WINTERS: And we all know it's on the eve of another BRICS together, this time in Ufa. Do you believe that everybody is aware of this petition?
ZEPP-LAROUCHE: No, I don't think so, but I think you're interviewing me is a great help to make it more known; because as I said, this Ufa summit is a fantastic opportunity to not just have, to deal with the internal affairs of the BRICS and then the Shanghai Cooperation Organization countries. But I would really, really wish that it would be used to issue a call to all of humanity in the moment of the greatest danger, to really make sort of an evolutionary jump ahead and define the common aims of mankind and ask other countries to join in this effort. I think if that opportunity would be used, it could be a landmark in getting mankind out of this crisis.
WINTERS: And you have a representative in Ufa?
ZEPP-LAROUCHE: You mean my organization?
ZEPP-LAROUCHE: Unfortunately, not. No, I would like to, but we have not been invited.
WINTERS: And one last thing; what are your future plans to help promote better relations between the West and the BRICS?
ZEPP-LAROUCHE: We are conducting a lot of international conferences. We just had a very important international conference in Paris, of the Schiller Institute, with 500 participants. We have an ongoing series of conferences in New York, in Manhattan; which is explicitly the idea to get the United States back on its tradition to be a republic in the tradition of the Founding Fathers and Alexander Hamilton. We had conferences in Washington, in San Francisco, in Frankfurt, in Copenhagen; and we will have more such conferences, and we would be very happy to conduct such conferences all around the world. Also, if people could join in; because we are doing what we can, but we really need other people to amplify our effort so that that becomes a common household word, this idea of a New Paradigm. I mean, we have published a report, which is also very important, which is called The New Silk Road Becomes the World LandBridge. The Schiller Institute worked out the idea of a Eurasian LandBridge 25 years ago, and we called it already then the New Silk Road. And we [have] had over the last 25 years, thousands of events -- seminars, conferences -- promoting the idea of the New Silk Road; and therefore, we were extremely happy when Xi Jinping in 2013 announced the New Silk Road to be the Chinese policy. And I participated just two weeks ago, in a big conference in Yiwu in China on the New Silk Road; and I think it is extremely important that there will be more such conferences. But for us, the New Silk Road is just the synonym, it's not just the transport connection between A and B, but it's a synonym for the New World Economic Order, and it's not just economics. It must be combined with a cultural renaissance, because if you look at the popular culture in the trans-Atlantic world right now, it is so degenerate, and so Satanic almost -- bestial -- that we absolutely want to revive Classical culture. German Classical music, Chinese Confucian thinking; in every culture you have some high points, and these have to be revived together. And then you can have a new dialogue of civilization based on the highest level of each culture; and I think that way we can get mankind to a completely new phase in the evolution of civilization. I don't think we have reached the end of history. If we do what needs to be done now, in this moment, I think we are on the verge of a new golden renaissance; but we have to mobilize like we have never mobilized before. Because it's an existential moment in history.
WINTERS: Thank you very much indeed for joining us here at Radio Sputnik. Founder of the Schiller Institute, Helga Zepp-LaRouche.