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Schiller Institute Conference
After Thirty Years:
The Need for the Principle of the SDI Today!

Press Release

Sterling, Virginia
March 23, 2013

This article appears in the March 29, 2013 issue of Executive Intelligence Review and is reprinted with permission.


Using the SDI Principle
Today To Save Mankind

by Nancy Spannaus
[PDF version of this article]

March 25—The 30th anniversary of President Ronald Reagan's announcement of the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI), on March 23, 1983, finds mankind at a crossroads, still threatened by the danger of thermonuclear war and economic-strategic crisis that led Lyndon LaRouche to propose that solution decades ago. With that reality in mind, the Schiller Institute, founded by Helga Zepp-LaRouche in 1984, convened a conference in Northern Virginia on that day in 2013, to deliberate on "A New Paradigm To Save Mankind; the Need for the Principle of the SDI Today."

Zepp-LaRouche, whose keynote is printed below, began her presentation:

"I would really emphasize that the continued existence of civilization depends on two preconditions: One is the immediate—and I really mean immediate, that is, in the next days, or at maximum, weeks—implementation of Glass-Steagall. And the second condition is to finally implement the Strategic Defense of the Earth, in the tradition of the SDI."

The conference, which drew approximately 350 people, primarily from the East Coast of the United States, featured two panel discussions, the first, on the need for a transition from the SDI to the Strategic Defense of Earth (SDE), and the second, on the solution to the economic crisis: Glass-Steagall or hyperinflation. As a foretaste of the new spirit of Classical beauty and optimism which the new paradigm must embody, the conference also featured several stirring Classical musical presentations, from the works of Beethoven, Bach, and Mozart.

From the SDI to the SDE

Only the LaRouche political movement, which fought for and spawned the SDI, could bring together the panel on this issue. After Zepp-LaRouche's keynote, EIR Counterintelligence Editor Jeffrey Steinberg presented the inside history of the program's initiation. Lyndon LaRouche himself then took the stage to make brief remarks about the necessity (see below)—while trying to bring an end to the process leading to thermonuclear war—of moving to the urgent mission of organizing a planetary defense, against "missiles" being thrown by the Solar System itself against the Earth.

Three presentations followed which dealt with some of the technical and political aspects of SDI implementation.

The final presentation on the panel was by Bruce Fein, a constitutional lawyer and former Deputy Attorney General in the Reagan Administration, who spoke on the "Lessons of the Reagan Era for Today's Challenges."

International Reverberations

The Committee on Implementation of the International Global Monitoring Aerospace System (IGMASS) project, a Russian initiative for defense of Earth from seismic, weather, and space threats, sent greetings to the conference in the form of a Russian TV feature on IGMASS, including an interview with the committee's chairman, Prof. Anatoli Perminov (former head of Roscosmos, the Russian space agency). In a letter thanking the Schiller Institute conference organizers for giving "encouragement" to the IGMASS project, Perminov wrote, "We believe that realization of the Project in its pilot version will convince the world community [of the] feasibility of the high objectives of IGMASS, aimed at gradual development of a unified global security field with respect to global natural and man-made threats in the framework of a new paradigm of international cooperation, on the way to overcome existing tension and conflicts."

The discussion period after this panel provided an opportunity to underscore that today's Cheney-Obama vintage global Ballistic Missile Defense System is not a realization of the vision of LaRouche and Reagan for strategic cooperation against the threat of thermonuclear war (as had been suggested in some of the presentations). The BMDS does represent a threat to the strategic nuclear deterrent forces of Russia and China, something which would not have been the case with implementation of the full SDI conception of strategic cooperation, including "open laboratory" sharing of technology. An number of post-Soviet Russian offers for strategic defense cooperation have been rejected or ignored in the West, including Moscow's 1993 "Trust" proposal for U.S.-Russian experiments on anti-missile "plasma weapon" technologies, and then-Prime Minister Putin's 2007 Kennebunkport overture for joint operation of anti-missile radars and other systems in Eurasia.

The conference participants also heard greetings read from the first spokesman from the developing sector to endorse LaRouche's beam weapons proposal in the 1980s, Gen. Hector Fautario of Argentina (see box).

Stopping the Hyperinflationary Blowout

The second panel of the conference featured presentations on LaRouche's program to stop the breakdown crisis, and the organizing drive now underway in the United States to implement that program. One special contribution to the panel was a video address by Rep. Walter Jones (R-N.C.), who urged the assembled to mobilize for the current House bill which would reinstate Glass-Steagall, HR 129, a bill of which he is a co-sponsor along with 39 others. He also addressed the strategic crisis, by presenting his initiative demanding that Congress declassify 28 pages of the 9/11 Commission report, which would reveal that Saudi Arabia was the author of the devastating 2001 attacks on the United States.

After a keynote by EIR Ibero-American editor Dennis Small, which stressed the crucial economic parameter of the productive powers of labor as the means for evaluating an economy's performance and potential, two state leaders presented reports on their battles for Glass-Steagall. State Rep. Thomas Jackson of Alabama, the chairman of the Alabama House Democratic Caucus, and James Benham, president of the Indiana Farmers Union, gave lively accounts of the conditions they face in organizing for a Glass-Steagall-led solution.

Concluding the session were two LaRouche movement organizers actively involved in the fight in Washington, D.C. to pass LaRouche's program: Michael Kirsch, who authored the LaRouche PAC's latest proposal for a new National Bank, and Paul Gallagher, Economics Editor of EIR, who has been intimately involved in the drive for passing Glass-Steagall in Congress.

Gallagher, who, as head of the Fusion Energy Foundation, also spearheaded the drive for the SDI in 1983, provided a crucial reflection comparing the fights then and now. Three months before Reagan announced the SDI, he said, everyone said it would never be done; today, "popular wisdom" in Washington also says Glass-Steagall will never be restored.

With the proper fight by a leadership which knows what is at stake and can convey it, that popular wisdom will be proven wrong again.

The conference concluded with an evening concert, which uplifted the participants for the fight ahead.

Videos from the conference will be made available at, and EIR will be providing further coverage of the speeches in upcoming issues.