||This presentation appears in the February 22, 2008 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.
THE EUROPEAN UNION'S LISBON TREATY:
Constitution for Dictatorship
by Helga Zepp-LaRouche
In a Global Fascist System?
[PDF version of this presentation]
Helga Zepp-LaRouche and Lyndon LaRouche spoke before an overflow crowd of 130 people on Feb. 13 at a conference in Munich, Germany. Entitled "Maglev: The Technology of the 21st Century," the event was sponsored by the Civil Rights Movement Solidarity (BüSo) and the Fusion Energy Forum (FEF). Munich is planning to build a maglev route from the airport to the downtown train stationa topic of heated debate in the city.
The conference was also addressed by Tom Gillesberg, leader of the Schiller Institute in Denmark; Michael Haberland of the pro-maglev organization Mobile in Munich; Werner Zuse of the FEF; Prof. Harry Ruppe, a space scientist who worked in the U.S. Apollo Project, and was a pioneer in Mars exploration while working with NASA; and Toni Kästner of the LaRouche Youth Movement in Germany. Italian economist Dr. Nino Galloni spoke during the discussion period. The meeting received greetings in support of the BüSo campaign for maglev from the president of the Technical University of Munich and from the Solidarité et Progrès party, LaRouche co-thinkers in France. There were guests from Switzerland, Italy, Slovenia, Denmark, and the United States.
Here is Mrs. Zepp-LaRouche's keynote speech, which has been translated from German. Lyndon LaRouche's speech follows.
The Context for the Transrapid Decision
Dear guests and members of the BüSothose, who are not yet members, will perhaps later this evening become soit is really very good when there is so much interest in a topic that the room is overflowing, because of course at the moment, the question of whether the Transrapid will be built in Munich, yes or no, is really a topic which causes a stir. And when you organize on the street for it as we do, you of course find out that people have really different conceptions. Some people say, "I am for the Transrapid, but only if it is a long route, not on such a short route as from downtown Munich to the airport." Others say, "That is much too expensive!" We have posters that say, "Transrapid Munich-Beijing." But people still ask, "Are you for it or against it?"which should be clear.
Therefore, I would like to treat the question of whether the Transrapid is built in Munich or not, from a somewhat broader standpoint. Some people after me will speak on the topic of the Transrapid itselfi.e., on the technology, specific routes, etc.therefore, permit me first of all to outline the context in which this decision will take place. Because, even if perhaps the world does not go under, if the Transrapid were not built in Munich, I would go so far as to say that if the Transrapid were not finally built in Germany, after it has been planned in many places all over the world and already operates commercially in China, would raise a question as to the direction in which Germany is going in general.
Are we going in the direction of the Morgenthau Plan, where all technologies that have been developed here, like the Transrapid, like the high-temperature reactor, are built elsewhere in the world, and Germany is turned into a green land with ugly windmills? Or do we remember our technological excellence, that we as a people of poets, thinkers, and inventors should actually be proud to have developed such a technology, and for that reason we can answer the question of German identity positively?
At the end of my comments, I will once again go into more detail on this: We are not only for the construction of the Munich (downtown-to-airport) route, but also want to build the Transrapid from Munich to Hamburg, and from Hamburg to Copenhagen. We also have someone here this evening, who will say a few words on the proposed route from Copenhagen to Aarhus [in Denmark], from there probably further to Sweden, and of course also to Berlin; from Berlin to Moscow, to Beijing, to Shanghai; and of course also many other routes. That means: we have a very bold concept of a Eurasian or world land-bridge, in which the Transrapid will really be the technology of the future. Many other nations have in fact also recognized this, much better than the Germans.
The System Has Already Collapsed
But first I would like to speak about the dramatic context in which this decision takes place. Those of you who are either members of the BüSo or read our newspaper, Neue Solidarität, regularly, indeed know the forecasts which above all my husband, Lyndon LaRouche, has made for a long time, namely, that we are in the end phase of a systemic collapse of the global financial system. And now, it's all over town or in the financial press, and other media continuously report on it. This is something one cannot ignore without reflection, when one speaks about such long-term projects as the construction of the Transrapid.
Just once more, quite briefly, as a reminder: On July 25, , my husband gave an international webcast in Washington, D.C., during which he said: The world financial system has already collapsed and what we will experience from now into the future are only the effects of it, which are gradually coming to the surface.
And exactly three days later, the first hedge fund, in the context of the so-called subprime crisis in the U.S.A., began to go bankruptBear Stearns. Four days later, it also occurred with the IKB, the Industrial Credit Bank [in Germany]; a day later Jochen Sanio, the head of the German Bank Supervisory Authority (BaFin), said we are in the worst banking crisis since 1931; then it went further, with the West Landesbank [LB], Sachsen LB, and with many other banks.
From August on, there was then a credit crunch, where lending between the banks came almost completely to a halt, as a so-called reversed leverage collapse began through this process, which had begun with the collapse of the American mortgage market, so that the different short-term "creative financing" instruments, which Alan Greenspan brought us, could no longer be refinanced, and therefore the large banks, above all the investment banks, all found themselves sitting on worthless paper, and because each one knew that the others had similar problems, a crisis of confidence has in fact developed.
In the meantime, the situation is such, that the large investment banks have written off two-digit or three-digit billion amountssums which were completely inconceivable just a few years ago. And the entire international financial press now uses terminology which until now you could only have read in our publications; namely, that new shock waves are continuously spreading. Not only the secondary U.S. real estate market is collapsing, but also now commercial real estate, other mortgage markets, which were of better quality. In the meantime, in the so-called monolines in the insurance sector, $2.3 trillion in problem contracts are at risk. The crisis is spreading into Great Britain, into Spain, where similar real estate crises are developing. New bombs are explodingfor example, $600 billion in auto loans, because in the U.S.A., auto sales are now often based on seven-year loans, which of course now are also beginning not to be honored; the same with $900 billion in personal credit card debts.
That means, the whole thing is really rudderless, and in the meantime, the financial press also talks about something which until now only we have discussed: that we are dealing with a hyperinflationary process, as in Weimar Germany in 1923. Three days ago, the Independent in London wrote exactly this, "hyperinflation," and brought back memories of the pictures of women who, with laundry baskets full of bank notes, attempted to make purchases, with Reichsmark notes of 10 billion. In a certain sense, this is now the situation.
Other economists are now warning, as for example New York economist Nouriel Roubini, who wrote that he believes that the core meltdown of the system is here, and that the Federal Reserve can do nothing to stop it.
Now, this evening we will hear above all from my husband, that in America, there is in fact an awesome, suspense-packed fight, and that there definitely are measures by means of which the problem can be solved. But this is really a war. And the same applies to Europe. We have possibilities in Europe, and in Germany, for bringing this problem under control, but we also have a large problem here. I would like first of all to briefly address this, although I would like to say at the outset that I really assume that the financial crash will completely change the agenda of all institutions, including the European governments, even if that is not yet clear to them at this moment. But the dramatic developments on the financial markets mean, that people must completely rethink everything.
Treaty for Dictatorship
I would like to discuss a great danger, which has been hardly been taken up by the press at all: the new European Treaty, or the Treaty of Lisbon. This is something that, in a way, was already rejected in May 2005, when the [European] Constitution was voted down in referendums in France and the Netherlands, with a definite "No," because they already clearly understood the effects of the adoption of the euro on living standards, unemployment, and the rate of price increases.
But what is now occurringand I must really ask you to take this seriously, because this represents an unbelievable dangeris that on Dec. 13, , at the EU Summit in Lisbon, this same treaty, in the form of a Constitutional Treatythus no longer as a constitution, but rather only a treatywas decided upon, in a disguised form by the European governments. And indeed, this text has up to now not been printed in Germanwhat an absurdity!and it is completely unreadable and completely unclear. It exists, as stated, up to now only in the form of the old Constitution, which has been rejected, as well as in the Amending Law, which reads, for example: "In Article 15, section 5, subdivision 7," the following word is replaced by this and that. Then further, "in paragraph 35, section 5, subdivision" such and such, this and that is replaced by that and the other.
That means: For the 400 regulations enunciated here, a journalist, citizen, or parliamentarian would practically have to sit down and place the European Constitutional Treaty and these formulations side by side, and then map them against each other, in order to understand this. And it is entirely, of course, in legal terminology, which most people do not understand. That is, in my view, the actual intention of the authors, who want this treaty forced through without debate and without commotion; and if it were indeed rammed through, it would have catastrophic consequences for Europe.
Already the Maastricht Treaty and the Amsterdam Treaty and the Stability Pact have practically created a corset for the European states, whichas can be seen with the euromeans not only that the national governments no longer have sovereignty over their own currencies, that there is no "lender of last resort" in Europewhich is not so problematic, if everything is running normally, but also that if a real banking crisis occurs, as we have now, then the Bundesbank and the BaFin are ostensibly the "lenders of last resort," but they have no sovereignty over the euro, and [European Central Bank head] Mr. Trichet said quite clearly, at a press conference: "That is not in our interest. We are not in charge of national bailout packages." Here is a real loophole in the law, which now already exists. What is now about to occur with the Treaty of Lisbon, is a massive obstruction of democracy, constitutional legality, and sovereignty. For what would occur with this treaty, if it were ratified, is that constitutional sovereignty would devolve to the European Council; the European Parliament would no longer have to agree to anything, but would only listento say nothing of the national parliaments.
This is thus, in reality, a constitution for dictatorship, which no longer maintains the pretense of a democratic process, and where a bureaucracy, which does not have to be held accountable democratically, makes the decisions.
The Loss of Sovereignty
I have found some highly interesting writings in Austria, where there is a giant debate going on, because this treaty is, in a sense, in even greater contradiction with the Austrian Constitution, because of its neutrality clause. There there is one piece written by Prof. Hans Klecatsky, who is one of the fathers of the Austrian Constitution, and former justice minister of Austria; on Dec. 19, six days after the Treaty of Lisbon had been decided uponhe commented as follows: "The Republic of Austria, with its Federal Constitution, is turned into a subdivision of the legal body of the EU. The coordination of both constitutions is replaced definitively by subjugation, submission, and hence by the dissolution of the republic into a European Union. Member-states lose the substance of their existential statehood and turn into merely regional administrative bodies."
The same applies of course to Germany, which basically gave up its own statehood long ago through these treaties. While the words "Federal State" are simply avoided in this European Treaty, it is already de facto the case that the European Union itself has now become the Federal State. This is just semantics, with which an attempt is made to say that Germany's Basic Law [its Constitution] would not have to be changed, although in reality it is a complete change of the Basic Law.
According to the Basic Law, all power is derived from the people; this no longer applies, but rather it now lies with the EU, effective immediately, once the treaty is ratified and adopted. And even our former Federal President Roman Herzog wrote in Welt am Sontag a year ago on Jan. 14, that if this document is implemented, Germany would no longer be a parliamentary democracy, and he therefore favored rejecting the treaty.
Thus, what is involved here is a complete paradigm shift in constitutional lawfrom the European nations as a federation, to the EU itself as the Federal Stateand a total change of the Basic Law. The EU Treaty would mean that the Basic Law and the Bavarian Constitution would be annulled; and although it is perhaps not the most important thing, that it annuls the Bavarian Constitution, still it is something that should have an impact on you, here in Bavaria. That was at least the opinion of Mr. Gauweiler in the Münchner Merkur of Dec. 27 at the end of last year.
Now, if one looks at the individual measuresI can only do that briefly now, in order to clarify the dramatic dimension of thisthe EU would have the right, effective immediately, to levy European taxes, and could therewith raise equity capital without any participation of the national parliaments. Jurisdiction in tax matters is an essential part of the existential statehood of a people. Legislative sovereignty will also be transferred to the EU, so that the law no longer proceeds from the people, but rather from the EU.
But also other matters, like laws governing competition, monetary policy, etc., are affected; and because of the General Clause in Article 3, section 2 of the Treaty, it actually concerns all areas of policy.
NATO and the 'War on Terror'
Thenvery dramaticallythe solidarity clause, which requires that in the fight against terrorist activities, all member-states must show solidarity in assisting; there is no longer a veto right. Thus, if a state is against doing so, but the majority of the EU decides otherwise, then that decision takes effect; everyone must participate, and the majority decision thus also applies to the use of force of arms, to conflict resolution, wars of aggression, the obligation to participate in an arms build-up. I would like to refer only briefly to the example of Afghanistan, how rapidly such matters take on a life of their own.
Originally, Article 5 of the NATO bylaws was invoked, because it was allegedly a question of self-defense, since allegedly al-Qaeda was responsible for Sept. 11; now seven years have passed, and according to U.S. Secretary of Defense Gates, the German Federal Armed Services should also intervene in the south of Afghanistan, whereas up to now it has been limited to the west [of Afghanistan]; this means the German forces will be deployed against the Taliban.
Were the Taliban involved on Sept. 11? I think not! No one has ever even asserted that. And you have seen, how Secretary of Defense Gates first demanded here in Munich at the Wehrkunde meeting, that the German Armed Services should be deployed in the south, to which the Grand Coalition in Germany had at first said, "No." I praised them for that (if they once do something positive, one should praise them; that does not occur very often!). But then, at the end of the Wehrkunde meeting, it was changed again: a thousand more soldiers in the west [of Afghanistan]. So it is perfectly clear, that if the situation escalatesand I think Afghanistan is completely in the grip of the drug barons, who take in $1 billion per year, of which $100 million goes to the Talibanthat is a lost war. And the only reason that the attempt is now being made to draw the European allies into this war, is that President Bush is anxious about his place in history; he does not want to be the only loser. That is of course an absolutely insane situation.
In other words, with the EU Treaty, this is how things would go. And if the first EU President were Tony Blair (that's not yet decided, but under discussion)the author of the Iraq War, who has also argued for a war against Iranthat would mean that the EU would be turned completely into an imperial entity. Robert Cooper, the former colleague of [EU Foreign Policy Representative Javier] Solana, has also said very clearly that the EU would be the greatest imperial extension in history, and should take action against rogue states, etc. I can thus only underscore, that a real mobilization should occur in the population against this attempted change.
The financial crash is, in my view, the reason that there is such a rush to push through the [EU agreement] without public discussion by the parliaments; but, if this were to occur, it would eliminate the possibility of any legal "handle" to get us out of the crisis.
The Right to Resistance
Despite Germany's limited sovereignty, I have also proposed measures, which some of you have perhaps read, which we do have the right to take according to the Basic Law, in order to respond to this economic crisis. For example, there is Article 20, which says, "Germany is a democratic and social federal state"that means a social state, an extremely important legal handle. And paragraph 4 of the same article says, that if someone should attempt to change this character of Germany, then the population has the right of resistance.
This law should be activated, and Article 56 of the Basic Law should be remembered: That is the article which contains the oath of office that is sworn by the Federal Chancellor, the Federal President, and the Cabinet, in which each swears to prevent injury to the German people, and to stand up for their well-being. And of course there is Article 104, which is the legal foundation for the Stability and Growth Law [of 1967]; and Article 115, which goes in a similar direction.
The Stability and Growth Law of 1967 was decided upon by the Grand Coalition in the 1960s, because the number of unemployed400,000was regarded then as intolerable. It gives the state the right and the duty to resort to measures to allocate credit for the creation of productive jobs. That law is still available, and can be reactivated, on the constitutional grounds of the Basic Law. Just last week, Der Spiegel wrote that Federal Economics Minister [Michael] Glos was ready a few weeks ago to throw this law into the garbage heap, but because of the drama of developments, the law has now been taken up and is being studied, to see whether it could be used again.
However, if the EU Treaty were implemented, this option would be gone! Because, then all legislation would be taken out of the hands of the German government.
I have also said, that we need a "New Deal" for Germany and Europe. We need a "New Deal" not only for America, but also for Russia, as President Putin has said; for Argentina, as President Kirchner has said; for the whole of Europe, as the former Economics Minister of Italy, Giulio Tremonti, has said; but we can only do that if this European Treaty does not pass. Because already the Maastricht and Amsterdam treaties have basically prohibited the issuance of state credit. That would really mean, that we would surrender any possibility of defending the General Welfare and our national economies.
There Is an Alternative!
I now want briefly to go into the other possibility. If we take this route, the Lisbon Treaty, then Germany is not to be saved, and we go into a Dark Age; then the Morgenthau Plan will be implemented belatedly, and social chaos is the absolutely certain reality, which will then occur. That means, that what is really at stake is the very existence of Germany.
On the other hand, we have an absolutely positive opportunity, and I would like to briefly present another scenario: When the "Iron Curtain" finally disappeared, between 1989 and 1991, because the Soviet Union and the Comecon disintegrated, we immediately proposed, that the industry and population centers of Europe should be connected to those of Asia through so-called development corridors. That is, we proposed the Eurasian Land-Bridge. When you visualize the Eurasian map [Figure 1], as a total Eurasian transportation route, where one builds along the historical transport lines, such as the Trans-Siberian Railroad, the old Silk Road, and other main arteries, as development corridors of 100 kilometers' width, this would provide practically all of Eurasia with a network of Transrapid high-speed railroads, highways, waterways, computerized train stations, and thus let Eurasia grow together in a way, infrastructurally and economically.
For a long time, members of the BüSo, the LaRouche organization, and the Schiller Institute campaigned for this concept, in hundreds of conferences in Beijing, in Delhi, in many American cities, in many European cities. And for a long time, people dismissed us as voices in the wilderness, as utopians, asking who would pay for all that. We heard the same arguments, as here in Munich with regard to the Transrapid. But under the unilateralism of the Bush-Cheney Administration, Eurasia is growing together much faster than would have been possible under normal circumstances.
If you look at the map today, and compare this with the original concept of the Eurasian Land-Bridge, which we published for the first time in 1991, then you will see that quite a few projects are in different stages of realization. For example, the railroad between South Korea and North Korea is being modernized and constructed, with Russian help, and is being connected with the Trans-Siberian railway line and the main Chinese line. India is building a corridor 1,400 km long, between Delhi and Mumbai, which should improve the economic life of 180 million human beings. The Transrapid is planned for Ibero-America. The Persian Gulf States want to have a 1,100-km Transrapid route along the Gulf Coast, and there are many, many other examples.
I will mention just one: In April of last year, a conference took place in Moscow, on the development of the Bering Strait. My husband was invited there, as one of the keynote speakers, because the Russian government wanted to give a signal, that joint development of great projects between Russia and the United States, in the tradition of Franklin D. Roosevelt, is the way to ensure peace, as the alternative to the Cold War. The conference took place with the participation of many representatives of the Academy of Sciences; the SOPS [Council for the Study of Productive Forces], which is the infrastructure agency of the Russian government; the governors of Siberia and other regions in the Far East; and it was there decided, that the Russian government would build this routewhich is 6,000 km, and which connects the Trans-Siberian Railroad through a 100-km-long tunnel under the seabed of the Bering Strait, with Alaska, Canada, and all the way to Chile. And here were members of the Academy of Sciences who really have a pioneer spirit, for what's involved are giant projects. Some of the largest raw materials deposits of the world are in Siberia. The Russian government wants to open up and develop these raw materials under permafrost conditions. Immediately, the Chinese, the Japanese, and the Koreans said they would take part, because of course for them, energy security and raw materials security are quite important for the future.
We were then in Moscow in May, and spoke with the same academicians; and I can assure you that they were as enthusiastic as children, even though the average age was probably over 80. They said: "In 20 years, we will be able to travel faster with the Transrapid [from America] over the Bering Strait to Mumbai in India, than we can now by sea." Here was a pioneer spirit, which is quite visionary. And in the meantime, one can really say, that this is a program for reconstruction after the financial crash.
Because this financial system ismy husband will have something to say about thisthis financial system is absolutely not to be saved. There is no trick, with which [German Finance Minister Peer] Steinbrück, or Trichet, or [Federal Reserve Chairman] Bernanke could somehow pull a rabbit out of a hat and say: "We are saving this system." This system is hopelessly bankrupt, and what my husband has proposed, namely that the four largest nations in the world must jointly put a new financial architecture on the agenda, is really the only chance.
Fortunately, we have already had a very good response in Russia; in China, and in America there is an extremely interesting fightbut here I don't want to take away from what my husband will say. That is, the possibility, that one can really create a new financial architecture, which includes a reorganization of the unpayable debts, fixed exchange rates, new long-term state credit with long maturities for long-term infrastructure construction. If we speak about the Eurasian Land-Bridge, we are not speaking about quickly reforming the whole system of globalization for a while, and then going on with shareholder values, profitprofitprofit once again, just as before; rather we are talking about a program of 25 to 50 years in duration; we are talking about creating the conditions under which the productivity of the land-locked regions of Eurasia is improved in the long term, and the living standard of the population is thereby raised and improved in a sustained manner, through infrastructure programs, which, however, are not concluded individually, but rather in agreements and multilateral treaties among the different governments of the world.
Germany's Positive Role To Play
Of course, in answer to the question of the identity of Germany, Germany has an absolutely positive role to play, for we have many technologies, we have many institutionsfor example, our middle-sized companieswhich are urgently needed throughout the world. For example, in America, there are virtually no middle-sized companies left; Russia has an enormous need, not to mention other locations. Therefore, the conception for which we have argued from the beginning, is not to restrict the Eurasian Land-Bridge to Eurasia, but rather to continue it across the Bering Strait, in fact across Canada, North America, Central America, all the way to South America, and of course to continue this Eurasian Land-Bridge to Africa, across Egypt, across the Strait of Gibraltar, across a tunnel from Sicily to Tunisia, because this is the only chance we have, to prevent the African continent from completely perishing. Only if we develop the momentum in Eurasia, can we also really engage Europe in Africa economically through infrastructure development, and only this gives a chance of preventing the total collapse of the African continent.
That is the moral challenge that the world now faces; as I already said many years ago, if we do not achieve the development of the African continenteven though it is so simple to do so, even though all the scientific and technological requirements are available, so that only the political will has been lackingthen we ourselves will not survive; not because Africa has atomic bombs, but rather because we lack the moral fitness to survive.
In other words, we have really come to a crossroads. Either we go in the direction of the oligarchy, an oligarchical structure to which we would grant an abundance of poweror at least do nothing to stop itand that is what we would be left with. For if one looks at history, institutions with a great abundance of power rarely give it back voluntarily. If we allow our sovereignty and any legal handles be taken away from us, then Germany becomes a hideous by-product of the danger of a new fascism in America. My husband will speak about the fact that a new fascism also threatens America.
On the other side, I think that we also have all the means at our disposal for going in the other direction, and for Germany, Europe, the European nation-states to become part of a new world order, a just world order, namely, a world order, which would emanate from the Eurasian Land-Bridge as a world land-bridge.
These are my comments with respect to what the Transrapid route from Munich to the airport is really all about. It is about a decision whether we are to be belatedly overtaken by the Morgenthau Plan; will we become a completely green land, where there are soon not even any people left who can still implement the phasing out of nuclear energy, because we no longer have the scientists; or whether we really decide, for example, not only to build the Transrapid, but also the inherently safe high-temperature nuclear reactor, an inherently safe nuclear energy source, which, if we assume that we want to feed not only 6 billion human beings, but that mankind will hopefully increase and soon there will be 8 or 9 billion, then we need investments that ensure the energy and raw materials security of mankind.
That is what is at stake, and I really ask you to consider what I have said about the EU Treaty. I will write an important article in the next few days on this, and attempt to deal with the difficulty, that we do have the clause in Article 20, paragraph 2, that the decisions derive from the people "in elections and votes," but the lawmakers have never written it out; that is, we have at the moment no possibility for a referendum, or a petition for a referendum, because the people, who did not make this explicit, did not at all want this to occur.
That is a difficulty, which is to be solved only by massive pressure from the population. And we have only a little time left. We have from now until May at the latest, because the EU wants to push this through by then. I ask you to remain in contact with us, because we intend to fully mobilize this right to resistance.