In 1993, when, through the courage of Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and PLO Chairman Yasser Arafat, an agreement for peace between Israel and the Palestians was reached in Oslo (carefully avoiding any role for the British), and signed in Washington by the two leaders, Lyndon LaRouche said the following: “The urgent thing here is that we must move with all speed to immediately get these economic development projects, such as the canal from Gaza to the Dead Sea, going, immediately, because if we wait until we discuss this out, enemies of progress and enemies of the human race will be successful, through people like Ariel Sharon’s buddies, in intervening to drown this agreement in blood and chaos.”
As in many, many other potential turning points in history, the wise words of Lyndon LaRouche were not heeded: The development programs were postponed while financial and stability issues were debated; the Oslo Accords were sabotaged; Rabin was murdered “by Ariel Sharon’s buddies”; and “blood and chaos” have followed for the past 28 years.
LaRouche’s words echo through the decades, and are just as relevant to the crisis in Afghanistan today as they were in Palestine then—in fact, a successful resolution in Afghanistan, through LaRouche’s “peace through development” approach, is perhaps the last chance to achieve a similar peace across Southwest Asia in the near future. The consequences of failing to follow that approach are more dire today, as the world is pushed ever closer to thermonuclear war.
But we can be optimistic that the potential for peace through development is greater today than anytime since the 1990s, when the opportunity for global peace following the collapse of the Soviet Union was squandered. At that time, Lyndon and Helga LaRouche proposed the New Silk Road, to unite the world in a new era of development, free of the British Imperial division of the world into wearing blocs. The British sabotaged that effort, maintaining and expanding NATO, and maintaining the “enemy image” of Russia and China. But China embraced the idea, and, 20 years later, President Xi Jinping launched the Belt and Road Initiative, taking the miraculous Chinese development process to the rest of the world. Now, the vast majority of the world’s nations have joined in that process as members of the Belt and Road.
And, it is The LaRouche Organization and LaRouche’s Schiller Institute which are now at the center of that process. The Schiller Institute conferences of the past 15 months have brought together the operative forces in dialogue—from Russia, China, India, Southwest Asia, Africa, and Ibero America, together with Europeans and Americans—to formulate the required economic and political policies for a new paradigm for mankind. The EIR to be published on Aug. 13, will contain transcripts of portions of the historic Schiller Institute conference of July 31, “Afghanistan: A Turning Point in History—After the Failed Regime-Change Era,” which featured in-depth discussion of the development process which can, and must, bring about a peaceful resolution, once and for all, of the imperial “Great Game” in Afghanistan. Rather than British troops marching through the Khyber Pass, the plan is for an extension of the rail line which runs from China through Peshawar to the Gwadar port, as part of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), to connect through the Khyber Pass to Kabul, and on to Uzbekistan and Tajikistan, connecting landlocked Central Asia to the Arabian Sea, and restoring the ancient role of Afghanistan as the prosperous hub of the Silk Road.
This great project was formulated at a February conference in Tashkent, and is already underway. Umida Hashimova, an analyst at the U.S.-based Center for Naval Analyses, who specializes in Central Asia affairs, told South China Morning Post that there are ongoing funding discussions with U.S. and Asian development agencies, and that “Construction of the 573-km long railway’s first section, between Kabul and Mazar-i-Sharif, is expected to begin next month.” The design and technical documentation of the railway will be undertaken by the Russian Railways, Uzbek officials announced following talks with Russian Railways CEO Oleg Belozerov in Tashkent on May 19.
The U.S. is engaged in two related institutions. The “Extended Troika,” consisting of the U.S., Russia, China and Pakistan, was established in 2019, and held two meetings this year, focused on finding a solution to the Afghanistan situation following the pullout of foreign forces. Also, there is a “Quad” arrangement involving the U.S., Uzbekistan, Pakistan and Afghanistan, focused on the railroad development project.
It is crucial that the U.S. cooperate with all the countries in the region, especially Russia, China, India and Pakistan, on this crucial test of mankind’s capacity to end the era of geopolitics and create a new Renaissance. There are powerful forces in the U.K. and the U.S., including leading elements of both political parties, which will do all they can to sabotage this project, to counterpose the Malthusian insanity of the Green New Deal and depopulation, which will lead rapidly to more wars.
An opportunity for Americans and citizens of the world to reflect on the seminal ideas of Lyndon LaRouche will take place on Aug. 14, marking fifty years since President Nixon ended the Bretton Woods system, confirming LaRouche’s warning at the time. Register here for the conference, “So, Are You Finally Willing To Learn Economics?”