Putin Is Calling The Shots On The 'Greater Eurasian Plan'

June 20, 2016
Russian President Putin at a meeting with heads of the world's leading news agencies on the sidelines of the 20th St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF 2016) in St. Petersburg, Russia, June 17, 2016. Mikhail Metzel/TASS

Russian President Vladimir Putin used the occasion of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum June 16-18, to pose the existential issue facing all of mankind: Either join in what he called the "Greater Eurasian Plan" for economic development and security or face the imminent danger of a collapse of the trans-Atlantic system and a senseless global war that could become a war of extinction.

In a two-hour dialogue with participants, moderated by CNN's Fareed Zakaria, Putin announced that the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) is about to begin negotiations this months with China for full integration into the One Belt, One Road project, emphasizing that 40 countries are seeking trade ties with the EAEU, and Russia welcomes full participation in this ambitious program by the nations of Western Europe.

In the same dialogue, he frankly took on the U.S. and NATO "bloody coup" in Ukraine and the more recent efforts to encircle Russia with NATO forces.

Putin's actions and the madness of the Anglo-American war drive against both Russia and China have triggered a growing revolt among Western Europeans, who see the war danger more and more clearly. Not only did a number of European leaders attend the St. Petersburg Forum against the explicit demands of Obama and London. Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy called for an end to the sanctions against Russia and urged Putin, who he said is in a stronger position, to unilaterally end the Russian retaliatory sanctions against Europe. Putin responded positively to the Sarkozy call, as well as statements issued by Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, but cautioned that Russia is not prepared to be double-crossed again.

German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier gave an interview to the widely-read Bild am Sonntag, blasting the just-concluded NATO maneuvers along the Russian border as a war provocation, demanding an end to the "war cries" coming out of NATO. Steinmeier's actions have triggered an all-out factional brawl within the German political class, just as Sarkozy's speech at St. Petersburg has triggered a serious debate in France. Steinmeier's intervention has been bolstered by recent attacks on the NATO provocations by leading CDU military analyst Michael Stürmer, and statements made this week by former German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder, also denouncing the trend line to a new arms race and Cold War with Russia.

All of these fundamental shifts in the political landscape come just days before the June 23 Brexit vote in Britain and just weeks before the NATO heads of state and government summit in Warsaw in early July, where NATO deployments are scheduled to be ratified into the Baltic states and Poland. The Sunday Telegraph, a flagship publication of the Tory faction in Britain, came out with a strongly-worded editorial in favor of the British exit from the European Union. The editorial openly said that the EU is dead.

We have reached a punctum saliens moment, where either mankind moves fully into the new paradigm, best expressed in the World Land-Bridge idea, or plunges into a war of extinction. There is no place to hide, because the future of all of mankind hangs in the balance. Putin is fully on top of this showdown, and he can be expected to do the unexpected in the coming days and weeks to win the battle for mankind's future.

Here in the United States, the greatest danger is that those growing forces that see clearly the danger of thermonuclear war will hold back from bringing the Obama Presidency down--before he starts a war. Leading voices within the American Committee for East West Accords, including Dr. Stephen Cohen and Gilbert Doctorow, are belatedly coming around to realize that Obama is not someone to be "pursuaded" to do the right thing. He has committed clearly impeachable crimes, including his refusal to work with Russia to crush the Islamic State, Nusra and other Anglo-Saudi-sponsored jihadist gangs. How many innocent lives have been lost because Obama refused to collaborate with Putin and the Russian services--who know how to conduct a counter-terrorist operation?

As this fight has reached a new dimension in Europe, Chinese President Xi Jinping is continuing his tour of Central and Eastern Europe, concluding major agreements with Serbia, which is a crucial hub for the Eurasian Land-Bridge.

Above all else, Lyndon LaRouche urged colleagues on Sunday to closely watch Putin's moves. He will take flanking actions, based on his understanding of the entire global situation. He doesn't trust others, most emphatically Obama and the British. He will act in surprising ways that will best reflect the reality of the global showdown moment. He is, LaRouche emphasized, the best reference point for action.



Putin Hits Sanctions, NATO Expansionist Policy, and Drive for Cold War

Russian President Vladimir Putin spoke for several hours on the final day of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum. He confronted head-on the realities of the present strategic crises which are being thrown at the new paradigm being created by Russia and the other BRICS nations.

In an interview after the summit, with Fareed Zakaria, he also deftly disposed of statements that he supported Donald Trump, by pointing out that he was misquoted by journalists such as Zakaria, who are not analysts, stressing that we “are ready to work with the United States,” no matter who is elected its next leader. He pointed out that “Trump has stated that he is ready to restore full format Russia-U.S. relations.... We all welcome it.”

In his statement on the final day of the summit, Putin said that the United States could be of benefit to the world, including Russia, so long as the U.S. would not interfere in the affairs of other countries:

"We need [the United States]. But we don't need them constantly interfering in our affairs, telling us how to live, and hindering Europe in building relations with us."

Putin pointed out that the Obama Administration told its European partners to endure sanctions against Russia, which had devastating consequences for Europe, but not the United States.

Putin said that European business circles in France, Germany, and elsewhere have expressed a willingness to cooperate with Russian and now it is up to politicians “to show wisdom, foresight and flexibility.”

"We do not hold a grudge and are ready to meet our European partners halfway," Putin said to the forum. He pointed out that Russia had not initiated the present "breakdown" in relations between Europe and Russia caused by the sanctions. "All our actions have been and remain solely retaliatory."

Putin continued, "Our recent meetings with representatives of German and French business circles have proven that European business is willing and ready to cooperate with our country. Politicians need to meet the business people halfway, and show wisdom, foresight, and flexibility. We need to regain trust in Russian-European relations and to restore the level of interaction."

Putin also took head-on NATO's expansionist policy, saying it makes no sense: "The Soviet Union is no more, the Warsaw Treaty [between the Soviet Union and Eastern European countries] has ceased to exist, so why does NATO need to constantly broaden its infrastructure and move towards Russia's borders. Now they're taking in Montenegro. Who has threatened Montenegro?" Putin asked, laughing at the absurdity.

He charged that NATO had "an absolutely slapdash attitude to our position on anything," noting that it was the United States that had unilaterally quit the missile defense treaty, which was initially signed to "provide strategic balance in the world." Putin went on to reassure the world community that he does not want to proceed to a new Cold War, as "no one wants it." "However dramatic the logic of the development of international relations might seem on the outside, it's not the logic of global confrontation."

Putin stated that the U.S. missile shield in Eastern Europe constitutes a threat to the balance of power. "We will perfect our missile strike capability, to preserve balance, only because of that."

Putin pointed out that problems in the world could be dealt with as is happening now in Syria. In that case, he said that nations in the world, including Russia and the United States, are working together to help solve the crisis in Syria. He confronted the regime-change policy, insisting that Syria's integrity must be maintained, as the top priority. Putin said bluntly that the disintegration of Syria would be a "destabilizing factor not only for the region, but for the whole world."

He stated that peace can only be reached in Syria by a political process: "If we want to promote the principle of democracy, let's do so with democratic instruments," he told the forum.

He stated that the Ukraine crisis was deliberately created by the Obama Administration to provide a reason for NATO to exist, and that is not how situations in the international arena should be handled: "After the Arab Spring, [the United States] sneaked up to our borders. Why did they need to support a coup in Ukraine? ... Chances are, the opposition that is currently in power could have reached it through democratic elections, and we would have been working with them, just the way we worked with those who were in power before President Yanukovych. ... But no," Putin continued, "they had to lead it to a bloody coup with victims, to cause civil war."

Putin said that these developments "scarred" Ukraine's Russian-speaking population in the southeast and Crimea, giving Russia no alternative but to take measures "to protect certain groups of people."

The reason, he said: NATO "needs a foreign enemy, otherwise what would be the reason for the existence of such an organization." Putin said that the whole conflict was forced on Ukraine "to substantiate the very existence of the North Atlantic alliance."

Feinstein and Tauscher Slam Plans for New Nuclear Weapon

Senator Dianne Feinstein and former Congresswoman and Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security Ellen Tauscher jointly wrote an op-ed that appeared in the Saturday, June 18 edition of the New York Times, demanding a halt to the planned production and deployment of the new Long-Range Standoff Weapon (LRSW), a new generation nuclear weapon that greatly increases the danger of thermonuclear war.  The authors warned

“The Air Force is set next year to accelerate the development of this new nuclear cruise missile. It would carry an upgraded W-80 nuclear warhead and be able to penetrate the world's most advanced air-defense systems.... However, building new nuclear weapons like this one could be unnecessary, costly and dangerous.”

Feinstein and Tauscher cited former Defense Secretary Bill Perry, who warned a year ago that the deployment of the LRSW would increase the risk of nuclear war by blurring the lines between conventional and nuclear weapons (the LRSW could use both nuclear or conventional warheads).  The two authors of the New York Times op-ed demanded that Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter provide a detailed public accounting of the plans for the LRSW, including whether it would be considered as a potential offensive weapon, rather than an added element of the U.S. nuclear deterrent.  They cited estimates by the Federation of Atomic Scientists (FAS) that the new weapons system could cost $30 billion:

“At a time when the Defense Department is set to modernize every leg of the nuclear triad, investing $30 billion in an unnecessary and dangerous new nuclear weapon is irresponsible.”

  They also stressed that

“We want to eliminate any ambiguity that this new missile would be an offensive weapon.”

The authors noted that the 2010 Nuclear Posture Review called for the reduction of the U.S. nuclear arsenal and the increased reliance on conventional systems like the Air Force's Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile and the Navy's Tomahawk cruise missile, which do not carry the risk of nuclear escalation.