Mackinder’s Geopolitics vs. Xi Jinping’s New Silk Road: Reality is Not a Closed System


… by Matthew Ehret, for VT

China will continue to hold high the banner of peace, development, cooperation, and mutual benefit and uphold its fundamental foreign policy goal of preserving world peace and promoting common development. China remains firm in its commitment to strengthening friendship and cooperation with other countries on the basis of the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence, and to forging a new form of international relations featuring mutual respect, fairness, justice, and win-win cooperation”

-Xi Jinping address to 19th National Congress of the CPC

In his recently translated address to the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, Xi Jinping laid out a grand design and philosophy for the short, medium and long term strategy for both his country and the world[1].

President Xi not only directly challenged the underlying morality of post-modernism and neo-liberalism which has rendered the western population incapable of planning the future or even maintaining the institutions handed down to us from past generations, but most importantly threw down the gauntlet challenging the western powers to release themselves from the ideological crutch of “geopolitics” and work with China under a new paradigm of “win-win cooperation”.

Xi Jinping’s Belt and Road Initiative and its global manifestations across Africa, Europe, and the Americas have been complimented on January 25, 2018, by an extension into the Arctic dubbed the Polar Silk Road. This Arctic extension gave new life to a project which Russian President Vladimir Putin endorsed as early as April 2007 known as the Bering Strait Rail Tunnel connecting the Americas with Eurasia[2].

Up until recently, western geopoliticians have attempted to dismiss such initiatives as “fringe concepts” promoted by Lyndon and Helga LaRouche of the Schiller Institute but today a very different picture has come to light which reveals that this battle between two opposing paradigms goes much further back in history than most people realize and as such, a need to revisit some forgotten history is in order.

It is, after all, due to this potent conception of history as a struggle between two opposing paradigms that the LaRouche’s and their allies have been able to advance such policies mentioned above for over four decades.

A History of Eurasian-American Unification

By the turn of the 20th century, Russian Finance Minister Count Sergei Witte (1892-1903), working in tandem with American System diplomats and engineers in Siberia were completing the final stretch of the Trans-Siberian Railway.

This 9289 km rail line was modeled on the world’s first trans-continental rail undertaken under the leadership of Abraham Lincoln in the midst of the Civil War and even featured locomotives and rail produced in Philadelphia[3].

This Trans-Siberian rail development followed: 1) hot on the heels of Lincoln’s victorious suppression, with the help of Russia’s Czar Alexander II, of the British-financed Confederate uprising of 1860-1865[4], 2) the 1867 United States purchase of Alaska from Russia, and 3) the near annexation of British Columbia into America in 1870 based on the promise of linking Lincoln’s unfinished “northern trans-continental rail” with the isolated British Colony[5]. Advocates of this plan included such architects of the Alaska purchase as William Seward, Charles Sumner and even President Ulysses S. Grant.

The first official studies to connect the two continents by rail was first officially presented by Governor William Gilpin of Colorado [see image] in 1890 and more advanced feasibility studies were conducted by the Trans-Siberian Railway Company in 1905[6]. Leading figures across both Russia and America including the ill-fated Czar Nicholas II were on record for their support for such a project.

The British Empire at the time was becoming known as “the old man of Europe” having wasted it’s dwindling resources on keeping it’s over-bloated globalized empire alive by suppressing uprisings in India (1857-58), Ireland (1867), South Africa’s Transvaal Republic (1880-81) organizing the Crimean War (1853-56) against Russia and 2nd Opium War (1856-1860) againt China- ALL while trying to undo the American Revolution by supporting the Confederate uprising from 1860-1865.

The Real American System Was Always “Win-Win”

From Japan’s Meiji Restoration to Chancellor von Bismarck’s “Berlin to Baghdad Rail” initiative, to Russia’s Trans-Siberian Railway, inter-continental development driven by rail programs were initiating new dynamics of cooperation and development amongst all nations of North America, Europe, Russia, and Asia[7].

Most importantly, these pro-development approaches to national economies were founded on the concerted rejection of all British Free Trade dogma and the vigorous adoption of the protective tariff, productive credit, and long term planning, all acting under the principle of the general welfare. Such

Henry Carey

policies were the basis for the American System of Political Economy. The leading American System economist of the 19th Century Henry C. Carey stated this clash of paradigms most clearly in his 1851 essay a Harmony of Interests:

” … Two systems are before the world. One looks to pauperism, ignorance, depopulation, and barbarism; the other to increasing wealth, comfort, intelligence, a combination of action, and civilization. One looks toward universal war; the other to universal peace. One is the English system: the other we may be proud to call the American system, for it is the only one ever devised the tendency of which was that of elevating while equalizing the condition of man throughout the world.”

Mackinder’s geopolitics demands a closed system

In response to these developments, several early “think tanks” of sorts were formed at the end of the 19th century in order to redesign and reform the structures of the archaic British Empire by “enlightened” imperial thinkers who recognized that the British Imperial world order was in danger of being superseded by a new order of cooperation, development and progress.

Two of the most important “think tanks” which have played defining roles shaping the 20th century, were London’s Fabian Society[8] and the Roundtable Movement[9].

One of the early members of the Fabian Society was named Sir Halford Mackinder, director of the London School of Economics and founder of a school of thought which to this very day, shapes western thinking and academia known as “Geopolitics”.

This study has influenced all imperial strategists who emerged from the 20th century from Rhodes scholar William Yandell Elliot, his Harvard students sir Henry Kissinger, Zbigniew Brzezinski, MI6’s Bernard Lewis as well as Samuel P. Huntington to name a few. It was also the foundation for the Heartland theory extolled by Nazi geo-politician Karl Haushofer and adopted by Hitler.

This 1903 map of British Empire territories demonstrated how strategic this maritime power saw it’s control of choke points (Straits of Malacca, South Africa, Suez Canal, etc) needed to manipulate the global “Great Game”. International development of rail threatened this power structure

Mackinder’s program was little more than a reformulated “divide to conquer” program already practiced for centuries by the British Empire, and arose entirely as a response which the threat of Lincoln’s American System program of worldwide rail development posed to the continued existence of the failing British Empire as mentioned above.

Not only did rail development pose a threat to the Empire by annihilating Britain’s maritime control of shipping chokepoints globally, but it also initiated the use of a new energy-dense fuel source known as petroleum which was threatening to replace the largely monopolized (and less energy-dense) coal for industrial production.

The Arctic as the Last Frontier

After successful expeditions to the South and the North Pole had been accomplished by 1909, Mackinder declared, like Thomas Malthus before him, that all that could be discovered on the Earth had effectively been discovered, and that human society was now officially locked within an absolutely closed system.

All that remained was for leading monopolies to map out finite resources, and get victim nations to slaughter each other in territorial disputes that would necessarily occur as the outcome of each striving to possess as many of these “finite resources’ as possible before they ran out.

This would be achieved by getting nations to look at the future not from the American System standpoint of their creative potentials to change those limits for the better, but rather from a monetarist free market filter of pleasure/pain and myopic definitions of “self-interest”. Were the bestial dynamic of each against all not adopted, all hope for world domination would be lost.

Mackinder’s theory was expressed most clearly in his observation:

Who rules East Europe commands the Heartland; Who rules the Heartland commands the World-Island; Who rules the World-Island commands the World.”

In other words, whoever could keep the “World Island” from becoming shaped by cooperative sovereign nation-states working together via overland rail connections stimulating national industrial/cultural growth, then the British oligarchy and their Wall Street junior partners believed that they could “command the world”.

While the depth and scope of this suppressed part of humanity’s collective history is too long to extrapolate in this short report, it has been reported in detail elsewhere, suffice to say that in order to understand the causes of World War 1 (and ultimately it’s continuation after an 18-year gap with World War Two), the fact of this historical dynamic must be internalized.

Reality is an open system

In the logic of empire, nations must be kept fighting each other in a closed system of absolute scarcity. Rather than creatively moving outside of those limits by discovering new principles of the universe, and creating new energy sources such as nuclear fission, thermonuclear fusion power, or desalinating ocean water to green deserts, nations have been told, rather arbitrarily, that ‘scarcity’ (aka: “law of diminishing returns”) has to be respected and, like beasts, adapted to in a survival of the fittest paradigm.

This logic has been used to manipulate idiots with political power into initiating almost every single un-necessary war during this past century and is at the heart of most conflicts today.

This is what China has rejected by launching the New Silk Road, Polar Silk Road, BRICS and Shanghai Cooperation Organization.

By calling forth the creative energy of the people and recommitting the Chinese leadership to serve the general welfare, Xi Jinping has ironically invoked that Alexander Hamilton, Benjamin Franklin, Henry Carey, and Abraham Lincoln dedicated their lives to advance.

He is also invoking the revolutionary spirit of Sun Yat-Sen, the Republic of China’s First president (1911) who was trained by American System economists in Hawaii and who modeled his Three Principles of the People on Lincoln’s principle of government “For, By and Of the People”[10].

Today, new energy sources and creative megaprojects await the political will to overcome those boundary limits met by our current addiction to “limited resources” such as fossil fuels. On top of the prospect of connecting Eurasian countries in a “New Silk Road” and connecting it into the Americas through the Bering Strait, the next frontier of human progress is not located on the earth, as Mackinder cynically supposed- but rather in the prospect of unbounded space exploration, lunar and Mars industrialization and asteroid defense.

None of these are “utopian fantasies”, but rather active policies either already being applied by leading nations such as China and Russia, or being offered by leaders among those nations such as Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin’s offer for Strategic Defense of Earth (SDE), and Russia’s Bering Strait proposal[11].

In a recent February 10, 2018 lecture, What is the New Paradigm, Schiller Institute Chairwoman, known in China as the “New Silk Road Lady” posed the question:

If you look at the condition of especially the Western world today—the United States itself; the condition of Europe; the German government, which is self-destructing as they are trying to build a new government—you have a situation where very clearly the world is in great disorder.

I have made the point that we need a New Paradigm, which must be as different from the present set of assumptions and axioms, as the Middle Ages were different from the modern times, where basically all the assumptions of scholasticism, Aristotelianism, superstition, and similar disorders were replaced with a completely different image of man and a different conception of society.

This is necessary to guarantee the long-term survivability of the human species. And the question is: Can we give ourselves a system of self-governance which guarantees that the human species will exist for centuries and even millennia to come?

This question obviously was one which my husband, Lyndon LaRouche, devoted his entire life’s work to: in other words to detect those aspects of the present system which were erroneous, and how to replace it with a better, more complete system.”

When the human species has so consistently demonstrated a capacity to discover the laws of the universe for the service of humanity, and when the universe has demonstrated such a limitless abundance of new principles to be discovered, then how could anyone in their right mind still believe that we live in a world of scarcity and materialism?

With entire nations are now moving in a new direction which is in harmony with those laws of nature that demand cooperation, peace and development take precedence over tyranny, war and ignorance, why would we choose to not change our paradigm in order to have a dignified and exciting future actually worth living in?


[1] Secure a Decisive Victory in Building a Moderately Prosperous Society in All Respects and Strive for the Great Success of Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era by Xi Jinpint

[2] After the April 2007 “Megaprojects of Russia’s East conference” the Russian government officially offered $65 billion to start the construction of the 100km tunnel under the Bering Strait. See “Russia Wants a Rail Link to America” Der Spiegel, April 20, 2007. Russia has since began implementation with a multibillion Siberian development initiative stretching rail and development corridors through the arctic and has tied itself into the New Silk Road. The loudest advocates for the Bering Strait today include Deputy PM Dimitri Rogozin and Putin advisor Sergei Glaziev.

[3] For a deeper history of the American building of the Trans Siberian Rail see the Catskill Archive’s Trans Siberian Railway by Theodore Waters

[4] “What role did Russia play in the U.S. Civil War?”, Aug. 16, 2017 by Oleg Yegorov

[5] Were it not for Britain’s offer to bribe B.C. merchants during a heated period of 1867-1870, all onlookers from Canada and the USA alike believed that this British colony was nearly about to incorporate into America, as this provided the only economically viable options available for the bankrupt colony. The Transcontinental railway had just been built into San Francisco and an active ferry system connected the BC merchants to the USA. The British had to move fast and did so by 1) paying off British Columbia’s massive debt, 2) then purchasing the massive territory separating its eastern and western colonies also known as Rupert’s Land and owned by the Hudson’s Bay Company in 1868 and 3) finally promising to build a railway connecting BC to Eastern Canada which was accomplished in 1885. The only condition was that British Columbia join the Confederation and not choose the American option. For a fuller account see The Imperial Myth of Canada’s National Policy by Matthew Ehret-Kump, Canadian Patriot #8

[6] Funds totaling six million dollars were raised privately, concluding the project could be done for $300 million. An editorial in the New York Times of October 24th, 1905, observed that “the Bering Strait Tunnel is a project which at some time in the future is likely to command a great deal of very purposeful consideration.”

[7] 1932: Speak Not of Parties but of Universal Principles- 2008 Lpac Documentary on the international spread of the American System and the British retaliation in managing WW1 and WW2

[8] “What is the Fabian Society and to What End Was it Created? By Matthew Ehret-Kump, Canadian Patriot #8, 2013

[9] The Roundtable Movement was founded by rabid racist Cecil Rhodes and administered by Lord Alfred Milner along with the creation of the Rhodes Scholarship Program in order to fulfill the mission laid out in Rhodes’ 7th Will “To and for the establishment, promotion and development of a Secret Society, the true aim and object whereof shall be for the extension of British rule throughout the world. The colonization by British subjects of all lands where the means of livelihood are attainable by energy, labour, and enterprise and especially the occupation by British settlers of the entire Continent of Africa, the Holy Land, the Valley of the Euphrates, the islands of Cyprus and Candia, the whole of South America, the islands of the Pacific not heretofore possessed by Great Britain, the whole of the Malay Archipelago, these aboard of China and Japan, [and] the ultimate recovery of the United States of America as an integral part of the British Empire.” For a thorough account of the Round Table Movement see Carroll Quigley, The Anglo-American Establishment, New York, Books in Focus, 1981 and also British Dictatorship or American System by Matthew Ehret-Kump in Canadian Patriot #7. The Roundtable movement’s operations in America were dubbed the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) when it was founded in 1921, while in Britain, it became called the Royal Institute for International Affairs (aka: Chatham House) in 1919. In Canada it was called the Canadian Institute for International Affairs, and changed it’s name to Canadian International Council (CIC) in 2006. Varying names aside, the mission has always remained the same.

[10] Sun Yat Sen’s Legacy and the American Revolution, by Mark Calney and Bob Wesser, Executive Intelligence Review, Oct. 28, 2011

[11] Yakunin Wants Decision on Bering Strait Rail link by 2012, and for Rogozin’s Strategic Defense of Earth, see “Star Wars as Alternative to Missile Defense”, Oct. 18, 2011


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  1. I do not need another dead persons philosophy to inform my mind about what is fair and just and in favor of the most people. Unity is the obvious answer, and oppression and aggression is not the answer.
    A people united to make a few others wealthy beyond imagination is not a good policy. A people united to serve others is good unless the others become ten or twenty, among millions.
    ” “The Tazza”, a large malachite vase, one of the largest pieces of malachite in North America and a gift from Tsar Nicholas II, stands as the focal point in the center of the room of Linda Hall Library.” What can I say, but whoever tells you that the time is Pisces and just entering Aquarius are either uniformed or lying. Can they prove it ? No. But it can be proven, that we are entering the first decan of Aquarius. 2 3rds of the way through. And nothing as it is, had to be so horrible. It was not destiny but choice. The good of the people is planned 7 generations ahead, and why is this not taught in your mandatory sKooling ? Go ask your fake priest.

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