Posted tagged ‘infrastructure’


May 16, 2011


Erle Frayne D. Argonza

The recent finalization of the 450-kph bullet train of China is among the top great news showing the positive, constructive life going on in Asia. Such a life has been led by the ‘emerging markets’ of the continent and seconded by the ‘dragon economies’. Altogether, the economic powers of the region are exhibiting to the world what is meant by the idiom ‘truly human’: constructive, cooperative, life-giving.

Now that Asia’s powers have shown that Asians are indeed humans—and not those “halfway between monkey and man” as imperialist White racists once regarded them—it is time to interconnect the whole of Asia via a New Silk Road. That ‘silk road’ could later interconnect with Africa and Europe, but first of all the priority must be to interconnect Asia in order to catalyze synergy and complete the development goals of all member countries of the continent.

The Old Silk Road once linked the Middle Kingdom, at one time the greatest civilization on Earth (circa 600-900 Before present), to the countries west of it, all through the Persian dominions and Arab dominions, and onwards to Byzantium and the Balkans. Ceaseless warring by the abominations of Europe—the mercantile and oligarchic powers of Venice and Normandy on top of the list—closed that road forever.

Those ignominious Dark Ages are way behind us now, though a new Dark Age is now enveloping the planet through the latest destructive pursuits of the Anglo-European oligarchy. Before the Dark Age would come to fruition, it would be best for Asians to bond together, exhibit cooperation and synergy, and build the New Silk Road.

In today’s context, a ‘silk road’ would comprise of a mesh of interconnecting roads, shipping lanes, and railways. Island Southeast Asia, among the dynamic economies of ASEAN, would benefit immensely from this new form of ‘silk route’ that interconnects roads, ships, and railways.

The prototypes of new bullet trains and maglevs should immediately be erected down the ground, while the stakeholders of Asia talk with each other to map out the Silk Road Plan and implement them phase by phase. ASEAN, India, China, Pakistan, South Korea, Japan would in the best position to lead the talks, both on bilateral and multilateral arrangements. Other countries, such as Nepal, Mongolia, Bangladesh, Bhutan, would follow suit the moment that the talks would yield actual results towards an integrated inter-looping Silk Road for the entire continent.

Surely a Damocles sword hangs by the planet today, threatening to unleash terrible woes as weapons of mass destruction will pummel and destroy nations in a new global conflagration. Needless to say, the Western powers are the ones orchestrating the compass towards this new Dark Age, sick as they are with the polarized minds they inherited from their ancestors.

But it’s never too late to decelerate the forces leading to the new Dark Age, and nothing can stop those forces better than Asia. And I would say boldly, that the New Silk Road will be among the best means or strategies to bring a new Age of Hope to planet Earth, humans, flora, fauna and resource endowments.

[Philippines, 07 May 2011]
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August 22, 2008

Erle Frayne Argonza

Good day!

A retired US general recently spoke about the overall conduct of war in Afghanistan. To the surprise and chagrin of defense experts and officials, the general most candidly declared that Afghanistan was a disaster.

The retired general spoke more like a development expert than a uniformed defense official. Accordingly, there is no military solution to Afghanistan’s problems. The ideas proposed by the same (ret) uniformed official combine relief and rehab, infrastructures, and capacity-building efforts, or those solutions that have to do more with a total development package. This is a clear departure from the demented thinking in Pentagon and DC that tend to exacerbate the destructive facets of US engagements in Afghanistan.

Below is the news item about the (ret) official’s pronouncements.

[18 August 2008, Quezon City, MetroManila. Thanks to Executive Intelligence Review database news.]

McCaffrey: Afghanistan Disaster, Unless We Send in the Engineers

Aug. 7, 2008 (EIRNS)—Retired Gen. Barry McCaffrey, who often functions as an informal advisor to senior Army leadership on the current wars, reported on the disaster in Afghanistan following his July 21-26 trip to that country and to NATO headquarters in Belgium. In a memo dated July 30, addressed to the Social Sciences department at West Point, McCaffrey writes: “Afghanistan is in misery.” Sixty-eight percent of the population has never known peace, life expectancy is only 44, and Afghanistan has the highest maternal death rate in the world, he reports. The security situation, the economy (including agriculture, which is “broken”), governance, and the opium problems, are “all likely to get worse in the coming 24 months.”

There is no military solution, McCaffrey writes: “The atmosphere of terror cannot be countered mainly by military means. We cannot win through a war of attrition…. Afghanistan will not be solved by the addition of two or three more US combat brigades from our rapidly unraveling Army.”

Instead, McCaffrey argues that, in addition to building up the Afghan security forces, economic measures are also required. He calls for the deployment of a “five battalion Army engineer brigade… to lead a five year road building effort employing Afghan contractors and training and mentoring Afghan engineers…. The war will be won when we fix the Afghan agricultural system which employs 82% of the population…. The war will be won when the international community demands the eradication of the opium and cannibis crops and robustly supports the development of alternative economic activity.” McCaffrey pointed to the tremendous growth in the poppy crop since the US invasion in 2001 and warned that “Unless we deal head-on with this enormous cancer, we should have little expectation that our efforts in Afghanistan will not eventually come to ruin.” On Pakistan, McCaffrey warns against a US military intervention in that country from across the border in Afghanistan, which he says “would be a political disaster. We will imperil the Pakistani government’s ability to support our campaign. They may well stop our air and ground logistics access across Pakistan and place our entire NATO presence in severe jeopardy.” In dealing with Pakistan, “We must do no harm…”