|Southwest Asia News Digest
LaRouche: Egypt Is a Key Cultural Center of North Africa
Feb. 5 (EIRNS)For more than three decades, Lyndon LaRouche has been in dialogue with key scientific and intellectual leaders in Egypt, who have consistently fought against British colonialism and its aftermath. Since the beginning of the historic demonstrations on Jan. 25, this dialogue has intensified. LaRouche commented on his long involvement with Egypt in a Feb. 5 discussion:
"When you look at Egypt, today, what are you looking for? You're looking for a risein Egypt, you're looking back to 1982. In 1982, Egypt realized, what I admired very much at the time, that, there's no way, by spending money on Cairo and Alexandria, in those days, back in 1982, by which you could not go from worse to worse. Every bit of money you spent in trying to manage the ghetto, made things worse, not better. So, they realized, that trying to jam all this propagation and population into these two cities in similar conditions, was a piece of folly!
"So, they said, 'Oh! Well, we have nuclear power available, don't we? We can do something. What can we do with the aid of nuclear power? Well, we can start to reorganize the water management of this region! We are now going to create new cities, as satellites of the existing cities. They will be true cities. We will build them, we will take yellow sand, and by known principles and with the aid of nuclear power, we are going turn yellow sand, in to brown sand, and then into black sand, black earth.'
" 'Now, we're going to take these cities, and we're going to call them agro-industrial centers. At the one time, we are building up the land-area: going from yellow to black land. On the side, this is going to create the new agriculture, the new food supply.' Remember, at that point, Egypt was also a major food producer, which it is not any longer, especially in grains. That was taken away.
"So, what happened is, Henry Kissinger and company moved in, as agents of the British, and said, 'No.' And Egypt went down, down, down, down, down, down, as a result. And this, of course, Egypt is a key cultural center of all Northern Africa. One of the oldest cultural centers of Africa! The Great Pyramid, for example, was not built by slaves! It was built by artisans of a population! By technologies which boggled the imagination of people who tried to account for the Great Pyramid before them.
"So, if Egypt is going down, and you look at the history of Egypt as known to the ancient Greeks, you understand this. So therefore, obviously, only by reversing the 1982 decision imposed upon Egypt, could you solve the problem of Egypt! So therefore, are you going to talk about doing something for Egypt, without taking this question of creativity into account? Are you an idiot? That you would believe that that would work?"
In coming issues, EIR will highlight the energy, water, and infrastructure projects needed for that development as part of the LaRouchePAC NAWAPA initiatives.
'Who Killed the Egyptian Dream?'
Feb. 4 (EIRNS)The interviews excerpted here were conducted by a team of LaRouche associates who visited Egypt for two weeks in December 1982 to present LaRouche's ideas for massive agro-industrial development of Egypt as a leading nation in both Southwest Asia and Africa. LaRouche and his associates in EIR, previous to this visit to Egypt, had conducted in-depth studies of Egypt's potential for development and how international cooperation in building nuclear power and water infrastructure would revolutionize the economy of Egypt, as an example of what could be done elsewhere in the world. These ideas are still valid and more crucial than ever to save civilization. Here are excerpts:
"At the end of the century, hydropower will be the source of 10 to 15 percent of energy, 10 to 15 percent will be gas-powered stations, 15 percent will be coal-powered stations and 15 percent will be diesel-powered stations. The rest, which is 40 percent, we expect to be nuclear power stations. We do not want to have all our eggs in one basket," stated Maher Abaza, Egypt's Minister of Electricity, in an interview with EIR conducted in Cairo, Dec. 17, 1982, and published in EIR, Jan. 25, 1983.
In the same issue of EIR, Youssef Wali, Egypt's Agriculture Minister discussed amazing plans for reclaiming the desert and helping Sudan and Africa in agriculture:
EIR: "Basically, what you are saying is that you can lead all of Africa in agricultural development."
Wali: "That's right. It is along the same lines that your magazine has written its recent cover story: "Egypt's Fight to Become the Japan of the Middle East." I agree with that concept. It is a very smart approach to take. We have to fight, though, to become the new Japan. It is not an easy game. Our transformation into a new Japan will not be served to us on a golden platter. We will have to work hard; we must be organized; we will have to avoid mismanagement, to avoid corruption, to avoid miscommunication, to become the Japan of the Middle East. I agree 100 percent with your vision."
Looking back at this clarity of purpose, EIR's Hussein Askary commented this week, "40 years of post-Bretton Woods British monetarism and free trade, and 30 years of IMF and World Bank-led destruction of the Egyptian economy in the name of reform, with support of the United States and Europe, have brought the great nation of Egypt, as well most nations in the developing sector, to its knees economically, socially, and politically.
"The dreams of the post World War II era of freedom, independence, and prosperity, which were shared by President Franklin D. Roosevelt and such independence heroes from Asia and Africa as President Gamal Abdul Nasser, Jawaharlal Nehru, Indira Ghandi, Patrice Lumumba, Kwame Nkrumah, and others, were strangled in the cradle.
"Are the Egyptian government and elites guilty? Yes, but only as junior partners in the crime. It is the British imperial system which moved to kill the development aspirations of all the developing nations of the world. What is required is capital punishment to snuff the life out of the British Empire system without showing any mercy."
Egypt Accused of 'Excessive Demand' for Food by Bernanke
Feb. 4 (EIRNS)Over the last 40 years of the world casino economics under British Empire monetarism, with world food production falling way below requirements, Egypt has been forced to be increasingly import-dependent; it's now at the point where over half of its yearly wheat consumption is imported, and it is the world's biggest importer of wheat in recent years. Now all that is in question: The food isn't there to be had. Yet, on Feb. 3, U.S. Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke accused Egypt of "excessive demand" for food, blaming its population for soaring food prices.
The truth is that for the second year in a row, the volume of world output of wheat is running far below even inadequate levels of utilization. For this current crop year, wheat production will come in over 17 million tons shy of recent years' annual use.
A scramble is on at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange by nations and companies trying to book scarce supplies of wheat for delivery later this year. All the while, "paper" trading of phantom bushels goes wild.
In 1970, Egypt was 75% self-sufficient in all cereals (wheat, rice, corn, barley, sorghum). Under the Presidency of Gamal Abdel Nasser (1956-70), plans were under way for nuclear power, water, and infrastructure development, for his nation to become 100% food self-sufficient. But none of this was to be.
Interventions were carried out against Egypt, and throughout the world, to obstruct any such development. In particular, in late 1974, the infamous National Security Study Memorandum, NSSM 200 commissioned by then-Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, had Egypt on the list of 13 nations whose development was to be construed as a strategic threat to the dominant London-centered interests.
As of 1975, cereals self-sufficiency in Egypt fell to 64%; in 1990, down to 60%, while the cereals production increased from 7.5 million metric tons in 1970, to 13 mmt. in 1990; and of that total, wheat output rose from 1.15 mmt. in 1970 to 4.3 mmt. in 1990.
Today, Egypt, with 81 million people, is only 50% grains self-sufficient. It is a world emergency, that people in North Africa have their daily bread. As a group, the North African nations (Egypt, Algeria, Libya, Morocco, and Tunisia) have, in recent years, been importing 23 mmt. of wheat a year, out of the total volume of world exports of 134 mmt. of wheat. But far less than that, is now up for export.