How the "LaRouche Youth" stalked and threatened Jorge Castañeda

"Jew, son of Cheney, son of Soros, we don't want you!"

Diario Monitor (Mexico City), April 18, 2004
(Original title: "Who is Lyndon LaRouche?")

Translated by Darrin Wood with illustrations and footnotes added by Lyndon LaRouche Watch

The warning to Jorge G. Castañeda was clear: "We're going to follow you everywhere. We are going to finish you off." At the beginning, it was just another speech by the ex-Foreign Secretary--this time to an audience mostly of young people at the School of Physics and Mathematics of National Polytechnical University. But then about thirty people began shouting, "Jew, son of Cheney, son of Soros, we don't want you!" Castañeda ended up seeking safety in a nearby office.

Jorge Castañeda Gutman, Mexican politician, scholar and former foreign secretary. The LaRouchians continue to slime him, but he's a real intellectual (unlike LaRouche) with an important message for people across the ideological spectrum in Latin America, as The Nation pointed out in its Sept. 19, 2011 edition (read here).

Since that incident [on Sept. 11, 2003], without being a constant presence, small groups consisting primarily of university students have popped up at various public appearances by Castañeda, including at the first official event of his Presidential campaign, held at the Polifórum Cultural Siqueiros.[FN 1]

The so-called cells of the LaRouche movement are active in at least five states of the Republic and defend the theories of Lyndon LaRouche, known for his ultraright ideas and as the publisher of the magazine Executive Intelligence Review and its Spanish language counterpart, Resumen ejecutivo.

Last year, some of these groups attempted to bust up several public appearances by Castañeda in places where he was scheduled to speak on his theme of "Ideas for Change."

At events in Querétaro and at the Tecnologico de Monterrey, the IPN, and the ENEP Acatlán, members of the "LaRouche Youth Movement" mixed themselves in among the audience. In the last of these places, the citizen candidate not only was interrupted repeatedly but also had eggs thrown at him by a small group.

"These are just provocateurs, the same followers of that right-wing neo-Nazi American who again came to disrupt," Castañeda explained.

In an interview, Lorenzo Méyer, a researcher at El Colegio de México, admits to being worried by certain aspects of LaRouche, a man of the U.S. extreme right whom Méyer calls "a frankly repugnant character."

"Nobody," says Méyer, "should be surprised by the presence of these characters except for the question of money, because that's where I cannot find the answer. That there are crazy people who want to make his politics their modus vivendi, we know that, but where on earth does the money come from to fund these young Mexicans and LaRouche himself, who doesn't just disappear from political life--I cannot find a rational explanation."

Career documented

Lyndon LaRouche is now a man of 82 years who has created a myth about himself, because he claims to have successfully predicted, over the last 33 years, a series of cyclical crises that have resulted today in what he calls the current "failure of international monetary and financial systems."

LaRouche's explanation boils down to a conspiracy by the British Government to create "failed states," with the aim of "eliminating national sovereignty and seizing control of the majority of the population and natural resources for multinational institutions coordinated from London."

The British Government--the LaRouche thesis continues--would transform nations into no-manís lands with roving bands of narco-terrorists, private mercenary forces and invading armies.

Under these circumstances, the world would have only one alternative: Lyndon LaRouche, who claims to be "currently the only person in sight with the intellectual qualifications to be elected to the Presidency of the United States in November 2004."

In one of his ideological writings, LaRouche explained: "The fact that I have always been opposed to the prevailing views among both politicians and the general public, should be weighed against the evidence that I have been right in my predictions at every step of my well-documented career as an economist and presidential candidate. In times of crisis, should our nation choose a leader who has been consistently right, or follow popular opinion leaders who, as the facts show, have almost always been wrong?"[FN 2]

LaRouche's "career" as a Presidential candidate began in 1976, when he was the unsuccessful candidate of the U.S. Labor Party.

The best he could do was to establish a presence--and carve out a space for himself--within the established parties. Since 1980, LaRouche has run in each of the Democratic Party presidential primaries, which are held every four years. This year would be his seventh failed attempt in the primaries. It should be mentioned that he ran in 1992 from behind prison bars--he'd been sentenced to 15 years (of which he served only five) after a conviction, along with several associates, for mail fraud involving an estimated 30 million dollars.

In Mexico, the ideas of LaRouche had their mirror in the Mexican Labor Party, in which Marivilia Carrasco and Cecilia Soto were militants, and then, until recently, in the Ibero-American Solidarity Movement (MSIA) headed by Carrasco. Paradoxically, Cecilia Soto today is the Mexican Ambassador to Brazil, appointed by Castañeda.

Also, one of the most publicized relationships of LaRouche in Mexico is with José López Portillo, who even received a visit from LaRouche in 1982 while holding the Presidency of the Republic. In 1998, López Portillo gave a long interview to EIR magazine in which, among other things, he said: "As President, I had a relationship with Mr. L.H. LaRouche of respect for his solidly independent and tenacious ideological position, which I share in large measure, largely because of the adherence he had achieved from a group of young Mexicans, whom I equally respect and admire, who even had to endure accusations of belonging to the CIA, which turned out to be false."[FN 3]

José López Portillo (1920-2004) shown here in 1999 with Marivilia Carrasco of the MSIA (center) and Schiller Institute President Helga Zepp-LaRouche (right).

Chiapas and the guerrillas

In 1997, Lyndon LaRoucheís group was accused of financing Peace and Justice, a paramilitary outfit alleged to have been responsible for the massacre of 45 indigenous people in Acteal.

According to information from the Center for Human Rights Fray Bartolomé de las Casas and a report, "Chiapas: the ongoing war," issued by the Centro Miguel Agustín Pro, two ex-legislators in Chiapas from the ruling Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI)--Walter A. León Montoya and Alí Cancino Herrera--had a relationship with the paramilitaries. Both were also partners of the MSIA and traveled--as guests of the Schiller Institute, a foundation headed by LaRouche's wife--to France and Germany, where they asserted that the guerrilla uprising in Chiapas of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN) was part of an international conspiracy, led by England, to cause the collapse of Mexico.

The MSIA was also responsible for the appearance of posters in various localities around the country that showed the face of the bishop of San Cristóbal, with the caption: "Wanted: Samuel Ruiz for betrayal of the fatherland."[FN 4]

Samuel Ruiz García (1924-2011), Bishop of San Cristóbal de las Casas for over 40 years.

The followers of LaRouche believe that the EZLN, the Colombian organizations FARC, ELN and M-19, the Tupac Amaru Revolutionary Movement in Peru and the ETA in Spain operate, along with other groups, as "part of this broad terrorist apparatus."[FN 5]

The "sins" of Castañeda

Currently, the bands of LaRouchistas are celebrating their attacks against the country's former top diplomat and claim that they've struck a "potentially fatal blow" against one of the major plots to "carve up Mexico."

The persecution of Jorge Castañeda is based on connecting him systematically with the billionaire George Soros, who, it is claimed, is financing Castañeda's campaign for the Presidency of Mexico in exchange for Castañeda promoting the legalization of narcotics and setting forth proposals to destroy the institutions of the country,[FN 6] including the unions, the PRI and the state-run companies such as Pemex and the CFE, among others.[FN 7]

In the same way, LaRouche's followers have declared war against the supposed "mafia" of human rights organizations (which have been supportive of Castañeda at times), saying that these groups have attempted to prosecute officials of previous governments, release terrorists, dismantle state institutions, and put an end to the sovereign nation-state--all for the purpose of imposing an "imperial legal order."

For Lorenzo Méyer, not all the pieces fall into place in the case of LaRouche: "Everything indicates that he is insane, but insane with all that money. The real crazies do not have so many resources.

"In the U.S. this person is not important; no one with any sane judgment cares about him. Now, I still donít understand why he has so many fans in Mexico....I would like to investigate why he has so many young people who follow him."

Can LaRouche be convincing with his claims that everything is a conspiracy?

"If his reasoning is supported with money, he could be convincing," Méyer said.

However, when asked if these groups could go further, crossing the line, Méyer replied, "My first response, offhand, is that they can be bothersome. Dangerous? Iím asking myself that same question, the same as you."


[1] A little background for North American readers: Castañeda, a former leftist turned centrist (and one of Mexico's leading political theorists), was an advisor to National Action Party (PAN) Presidential candidate Vicente Fox in the 2000 election, and played a major role in Fox's historic victory over Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) candidate Francisco Labastida Ochoa which ended over 70 years of uninterrupted rule by the quasi-authoritarian PRI.

Castañeda was appointed as Foreign Secretary by Fox, but resigned in early 2003 as a result of disagreements with colleagues. Shortly thereafter, he began touring the country giving speeches in obvious preparation for a 2006 Presidential bid--a bid that more than one faction in Mexican politics would have wanted to head off.

The attempt by the "LaRouche Youth" to derail Castañeda's pre-campaign through threats and anti-Semitism failed, and he announced in March 2004 that he was running as an independent "citizen's candidate." He then sought authorization through the courts to run without the endorsement of any registered political party. The Mexican Supreme Court ruled against him the following year, effectively ending his campaign.

[2] Over the past forty years, LaRouche has made thousands of predictions to impress his followers and keep them in a state of hysteria. He has, among other things, predicted stock market crashes, a rerun of the Great Depression in the United States, a worldwide depression, a nuclear holocaust, a swine flu plague that would kill millions, the wiping out of most of the human race by the AIDS virus, assassinations of U.S. presidents, famines that would kill hundreds of millions in Africa, American youth being turned into brain-dead zombies by rock and roll, a Henry Kissinger-instigated assassination attempt against LaRouche, a KGB assassination attempt against LaRouche, a CIA assassination attempt against LaRouche, Cuban exile frogmen swimming up the Hudson River to kill LaRouche, and on and on. None of these predictions have come true.

One prediction--of a recession/depression in the U.S. in 2008-09--did come true, but this proves nothing since LaRouche had been making the same prediction for decades without it coming true. Also, when he made his predictions of an economic crash in 2008, many professional economists had already done so--all LaRouche had to do was listen to their forecasts on TV and then add his own spin.

[3] The ideological positions of LaRouche and his followers for which López Portillo had "respect" apparently included their virulent anti-Semitism, for in his interview with EIR (read here) the former Mexican President inveighed at some length against Shylock, "usurious" conditions, pounds of flesh, etc. "We [Mexico] resorted to Shylock to sell him our petroleum blood, before he could try to cut the flesh, and so we could pay him his due."

López Portillo continued: "I...know how to deal with Shylock. When I issued categorical instructions, in 1982, that Mexico would declare a suspension of payments, the U.S. negotiators withdrew the unacceptable conditions, not without first obtaining some other usurious benefits."

In this statement, López Portillo was paying indirect homage to LaRouche's Operation Juárez, a 1982 pamphlet that urged the nations of "Ibero-America" to stand up to the IMF, nationalize their banking structures, and jointly use the threat of the "debt bomb"--the repudiation of the huge amounts that certain improvident governments owed to London and New York banks--in order to negotiate a new world financial system. This pamphlet was widely circulated in government circles throughout Latin America, and its recommendations allegedly were the chief topic during LaRouche's 1982 meeting with López Portillo.

But what López Portillo actually did in 1982 was very different from what he would claim to have done in the EIR interview 16 years later. Essentially, the Mexican president used LaRouche's proposal and a quickie nationalization of Mexico's banks as a cover for imposing the strict measures demanded by the IMF (this was pointed out by, among others, McGill University economist R.T. Nayor in his Hot Money and the Politics of Debt, 1987; read more details here). López Portillo's vaunted bank nationalization, which resulted in massive capital flight from Mexico, would be gradually reversed over the following decade.

[4] MSIA leader Hugo López Ochoa discussed this poster and the MSIA's press campaign against Bishop Ruiz in the April 17, 1998 Executive Intelligence Review. The headline boasted that "the MSIA poster accusing Ruiz of treason and of inviting foreign invasion" had "mobilized Mexico's patriots."

It is clear from López Ochoa's article (read here) that the LaRouche organization had been mobilized to intimidate and discredit the National Mediation Commission, headed by Ruiz, which was trying to make peace in Chiapas rather than allowing Mexico's southernmost state to turn into a killing field.

Basically, the LaRouchians were working as cat's paws for the national PRI (as they had previously done in several elections) and for the Mexican Army and the local Chiapas caciques (PRI-affiliated political bosses who were deeply involved with paramilitary groups such as Paz y Justicia, mobilizing them against the EZLN and also against Catholic priests working with the indigenous peoples in Chiapas).

[5] In their interminable warnings about narcoterrorism in the post-Cold War 1990s, the LaRouchians frequently jumbled together (as they did in this case) still-active guerrilla groups (some of which were involved in narcotics trafficking, and some not), ex-guerrilla groups that had renounced violence and were participating in democratic processes, and guerrilla groups that no longer existed. And the LaRouche organization highlighted in this propaganda the EZLN--a movement that (a) had evolved away from the Marxist philosophy shared by other insurgents on LaRouche's list, (b) was not (and is not) involved in the narcotics traffic and (c) had ceased to engage in offensive military operations after its initial unsuccessful 1994 uprising, although it functioned thereafter (and still functions) as a defensive shield against government-backed paramilitaries.

The true absurdity of LaRouche's theory of a narcoterrorist plot to destroy the nations of "Ibero-America" is that it also ropes in the Jesuits, the anthropology profession, gay activists, human rights organizations, factions in the U.S. government, the "old Synarchist" (i.e., old Jew) Fidel Castro, the United Nations, the IMF, the environmentalist movement, Satanists, gnostic cultists, Queen Elizabeth, Prince Philip, the Rothschilds and the Goldsmiths (Rothschild cousins) and, predictably, most of Latin America's left-of-center political parties.

Underneath this wacky fabulation, however, is a chillingly "rational" idea: that the enemies of "nationalism" are a tight network of armed groups and support networks, and that anyone who is left of center or who is so tendered-hearted as to believe in "human rights" or saving the rain forests is part of this network and hence should be regarded as if he or she were a combatant. In essence, LaRouche and his followers are arguing for mass government repression of all those who can be defined through six-degrees-of-separation cross-gridding as direct or indirect ideological supporters of guerrilla movements past or present.

For a hair-raising example of how the LaRouchians applied this theory--so similar to that behind Argentina's "dirty war" and Operation Condor--to the politics of Mexico and other Latin American countries, read The Plot to Annihilate the Armed Forces and the Nations of Ibero-America, a book by the LaRouche organization published in Spanish in 1993 and in English the following year (excerpts here). This screed was so highly regarded by Mexican Army chiefs that they printed their own edition.

LaRouche's EIR also published complaints by his followers that their friends in the repressive apparatuses of various countries weren't moving fast enough to implement the blood-thirsty crackdowns desired by LaRouche. Read a 1995 example relating to Chiapas here and a 1983 example regarding the war between death squads and Basque nationalists in Spain here.

[6] One of LaRouche's chief techniques in spreading anti-Semitism is to select out Jewish public figures who are controversial with one or more segments of the population, and then create caricatures of these individuals to be presented as Symbolic Evil Jews (SEJs). Former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger was the chief target of SEJ demonization in the 1970s and 1980s but was then replaced by financier George Soros.

Essentially the SEJ is presented as the public face of an international financial oligarchy which, in turn, is depicted as the embodiment of an almost Satanic malevolence (in fact, LaRouche's warnings against the supposed London-based "oligarchy" are just a modified version of the long-discredited Elders of Zion conspiracy theory).

In the period 2003-04, LaRouche propaganda presented Castañeda Gutman as the Symbolic Evil Jew of Mexico--a treasonous agent of George Soros and the "British" oligarchs (the Rothchilds and Goldsmiths, etc.). EIR and other LaRouche publications claimed, for instance, that Castañeda was working with U.S. neo-conservatives (a mostly Jewish group of policy wonks) to dismember Mexico. The anti-Castañeda campaign included--as have LaRouche's accusations against other SEJs and against gentile politicians regarded as oligarchical puppets--a unique form of verbal sadism. For instance, a Sept. 26, 2003 EIR article, "Mexico's LaRouche Youth Make Castañeda Crawl," boasted how the LaRouchians had made "back-to-back interventions" at his campaign events, how they'd thrown him "into a fit" and into a "state of agitation," how he'd supposedly fled from them "in a panic, crawling on his knees and climbing through a broken window..."

The political stalking of Castañeda--and the hate rhetoric directed at him--diminished after it became clear that his presidential campaign was going nowhere. In effect, he was demoted from his role as Mexico's number one SEJ, and a cynic might say this was because the faceless ones in the byzantine world of Mexican politics who'd been funding the harassment of Castañeda decided there was no point in continuing it.

Yet as late as 2009, LaRouche's political action committee would issue a press release (read here) describing Castañeda as "a Soros lackey, and a well-known British agent-of-influence whose career has been dedicated to the destruction of the sovereign nation-state on behalf of private banking interests." This statement was flanked on the LaRouchePAC webpage by an ad for the notorious anti-Semitic screed Dope, Inc., written by LaRouche followers in 1978 and widely circulated in Latin American over the years under the title Narcotráfico SA.

Ideological poison of the far right.

[7] LaRouche used code language to inject his anti-Semitism into the fight to prevent privatization of Petróleos Mexicanos (Pemex) and the Comisión Federal de Electricidad (CFE). When marches or rallies were held in various cities in 2003 to support continued state ownership of the two energy giants, LaRouche's EIR hailed the events as a campaign against "usury," praised a move by Federal Deputies to remove Elba Esther Gordillo, the PRI's chief in the Chamber of Deputies, as a "'traitor' fronting for the usurers," and blamed everything on financier George Soros and on Soros' "pet Mexican asset" (and fellow Jew) Jorge Castañeda.

There are striking similarities between this Dec. 12, 2003 EIR article (read here) and a September 2004 piece published by the anti-Semitic internet news service La Voz de Aztlán, which is aimed at readers in both Mexico and the U.S. Southwest and uses language somewhat more blunt than LaRouche's:

"The nation of Mexico, the second largest world producer of oil during the past four months, is today in imminent danger of being taken over by an International Jewish Cabal led by Mexico's former Secretary of Foreign Relations George Gutman. Mr. Gutman, known in Mexico as Jorge Castañeda, and his fellow conspirators are today working full time to control the outcome of the presidential elections of 2006."

Now contrast this with EIR's Sept. 26, 2003 make-Castañeda-crawl article:

"The growing LaRouche Youth Movement delivered a potentially mortal blow to one of the International Synarchists' principal projects to rip the country apart, when they derailed the Presidential campaign of...Jorge Castañeda....

"Castañeda's campaign today--whatever happens in 2006--is a threat to Mexico's national existence, not due to his domestic power, but because he is the instrument of an imperialist neo-conservative operation to break up Mexico."

Is there really any difference in the two formulations? Instead of calling the enemy an "International Jewish" cabal, EIR calls it an "International Synarchist" cabal, a reference to a conspiracy of Jewish bankers that was featured in Vichy French propaganda during World War Two. And note how the alleged plot is then relabelled for non-cognoscenti--including those on the left--as "an imperialist neo-conservative operation." Since the LaRouchians often refer to the U.S. neo-conservatives as "Children of Satan," we are left with what is basically a closed loop of rhetorical Jew hatred.

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