Don’t Be Tragic! Sleepers, Awake!By Dennis Speed
May 21—The disastrous, “thermonuclear Vietnam” policy of the United States and NATO, as just reasserted at the G7 “Hiroshima” summit in the form of the unwinnable “Ukraine” proxy war, must end not only in the defeat, but, if pursued, in the near-term systemic dissolution of the Anglosphere itself—whatever the apparent outcome on the battlefield. As Helga Zepp-LaRouche asserts in her “Urgent Appeal by Citizens and Institutions from All Over the World to the (Next) President of the United States!” “Today we are faced with a strategic situation far more dangerous than that at the height of the Cuban missile crisis. Offensive NATO weapon systems are much closer to the border of Russia than Cuba is to the United States. The destructive power of the NATO weapons is even greater, the warning time before their launch shorter, and the trust between the leaders of the big nuclear powers is virtually non-existent, compared to that between Kennedy and Khrushchev.”
We must awaken, and must bring ourselves, with the aid of principles of Classical drama, to confront the failure of our United States and trans-Atlantic citizenries to, in many cases, even notice the accelerated unfolding of the historical tragedy in which they are now participants—the “ship of fools” on which they are presently passengers.
With the specter of thermonuclear war now hovering over the global horizon, the unfinished business of the 1963-1983 era of United States foreign policy toward today’s Russia, China, and the “global majority” of the world’s nations, especially as regards questions of war and peace, has now come to center stage. The aborted policy-actions to prevent thermonuclear war, taken by two Presidents—John F. Kennedy and Ronald Reagan, one assassinated, the other nearly so—in proposing a “higher peace” approach to the then-extant Soviet Union, reveal the strategic mind-set that must inform our war-avoidance approach today, and without which the human race has no chance of surviving.
Kennedy’s intention was expressed in his “Peace Speech” at American University June 10, 1963:
“Total war makes no sense in an age when great powers can maintain large and relatively invulnerable nuclear forces and refuse to surrender without resort to those forces. It makes no sense in an age when a single nuclear weapon contains almost ten times the explosive force delivered by all the Allied air forces in the Second World War. It makes no sense in an age when the deadly poisons produced by a nuclear exchange would be carried by wind and water and soil and seed to the far corners of the globe and to generations yet unborn.”
The sentiments that he expressed that day, are so different from the present foreign policy of this nation, that they might well be called “treason” in today’s reactionary political atmosphere. They were far from it. They were a change in Cold War axioms, one which the intelligence factions represented by Allen Dulles and Bertrand Russell would not accept.
Eight months after the thermonuclear near-Armageddon of the October 1962 Cuban missile crisis, JFK would propose that the nation “reverse course” toward his, and America’s arch-enemy, the Soviet Union. He would emphasize that the two most powerful nations in the world were, precisely because of their power, therefore also the most vulnerable to complete annihilation. This meant that the two powers must quickly shift the world toward the direction of sanity. “For, in the final analysis, our most basic common link is that we all inhabit this small planet. We all breathe the same air. We all cherish our children’s future. And we are all mortal.”
Today, as in 1963, the survival of humanity demands a higher mode of conflict resolution than total war, or “little wars” that can turn into total war in a matter of hours, or even minutes. Since JFK’s time, ten presidents ago, no American leader, with the exception of the “unelected president” Martin Luther King, in his “nonviolence or nonexistence” Riverside Church speech against the war in Vietnam, has successfully challenged Americans to “walk the narrow path of peace” in the same way—with one exception. On March 23, 1983, President Ronald Reagan ended a nationally televised speech with this formulation:
“Let me share with you a vision of the future which offers hope. It is that we embark on a program to counter the awesome Soviet missile threat with measures that are defensive. Let us turn to the very strengths in technology that spawned our great industrial base and that have given us the quality of life we enjoy today.
“What if free people could live secure in the knowledge that their security did not rest upon the threat of instant U.S. retaliation to deter a Soviet attack, that we could intercept and destroy strategic ballistic missiles before they reached our own soil or that of our allies?
“I know this is a formidable, technical task, one that may not be accomplished before the end of the century. Yet, current technology has attained a level of sophistication where it’s reasonable for us to begin this effort. It will take years, probably decades of efforts on many fronts. There will be failures and setbacks, just as there will be successes and breakthroughs. And as we proceed, we must remain constant in preserving the nuclear deterrent and maintaining a solid capability for flexible response. But isn’t it worth every investment necessary to free the world from the threat of nuclear war? We know it is.”
The policy of defensive weapons, a policy that, had it been implemented, would have prevented the present situation, which places the world on the brink of thermonuclear Armageddon, from even arising, originated with economist and statesman Lyndon H. LaRouche. That has never been generally reported to the American people up to today; it is suppressed knowledge. That “higher peace policy” was the reason for the persecution and incarceration of LaRouche and his associates, and is the great secret of the past four decades of thermonuclear strategic policy, and current history. It is not fashionable, nor considered acceptable, to discuss the relationship between the foreign policy “axiom shift” of JFK in 1963, and the “axiom busting” proposal of Ronald Reagan to the Soviet Union in 1983. It “blows the circuitry” of contemporary historical myth-making, but it is nonetheless true: LaRouche proposed it, and Reagan adopted it.
It is also true, that unless and until the truths of contemporary history are revealed, from the 1963-68 four American assassinations of John and Robert Kennedy, Rev. Martin Luther King, Malcolm X (and other murders conducted by the “International Assassination Bureau” in Germany, Italy, etc. in the 1960s and 1970s), to the 1983 true story of the Strategic Defense Initiative and the subsequent persecution and incarceration of Lyndon LaRouche by the United States Department of Justice (which was the precedent for those actions now being conducted against former American Presidents and private citizens), the danger of thermonuclear war, whether sought or unsought, will continue to mount by the day. It is possible to not be tragic, to not repeat the lessons of history. As Robert Kennedy’s favorite poet, Aeschylus, said:
“He who learns must suffer. And even in our sleep pain, which cannot forget, falls drop by drop upon the heart, until, in our own despair, against our will, comes wisdom through the awful grace of God.”
The sleep of Reason produces tragedy. Sleepers, awake!