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(here since 11.11.2014) – the old blog will be available again as an archive.

Jean Ziegler’s alarm call

After the talk show ZDF March 21, 2019

I wrote it down as much as possible in a hurry, I accepted acoustic misunderstandings, Jean Ziegler speaks very enthusiastically, with emphasis – and with a Swiss accent, you have to research a lot, especially names and political terms. Otherwise, you can probably read everything in his book. (It was out of stock at the moment because of the program.) But the oral presentation, as it came about live, was so gripping that it took a long time. One would like to recap everything, also maintain the impetus and continue to research in some points. This preliminary transcript will certainly be corrected and supplemented.

The Markus Lanz broadcast is available HERE 37:44

About Jean Ziegler in advance Wikipedia here. (Also in order to take note of the possible criticisms of his person and perhaps to put them into perspective.) In the following ML = Markus Lanz, JZ = Jean Ziegler.

ML Jean Ziegler is with us, whom we warmly welcome again to our show. … he was quoted earlier, and suddenly he says: Madness, the last communist in Europe on our program today. Then you said: (tries Swiss) well, we are not that few.

JZ Hopefully not!

ML Ah there are other communists, yes?, Who you know …

JZ Communism is … is the horizon of history, it has never existed, except in the French commune, March, May 1890, otherwise it never existed. But the manifest says: by everyone according to their abilities, for everyone according to their needs. I think that’s the norm that civilization means, the horizon…

ML You have made a small, fine booklet "What is so bad about capitalism? Answers to my granddaughter’s questions ”. What’s so bad about capitalism, apart from the fact that you don’t have a granddaughter at all …

JZ What is so bad about capitalism? One child starves to death every 5 seconds. And in 10 years? This is the United Nations’ specialized FAO translation, which gives the number of victims, that is, a child starves to death in 5 seconds, and in 10 years and the same … who gives the number of victims every April, says that world agriculture is as it is today , could easily feed 12 billion people. So … are 7.3 … could double the normal diet if food intake did not depend on purchasing power. The child we are talking about and dies is murdered. Point.

ML This is one of your famous sentences that you often say, Mr. Ziegler, tell us to explain it to us, so if you say there is enough for 12 billion, how could it work in practice?


JZ First of all: Hunger is man-made and could be eliminated by people tomorrow. Germany, for example, is surely the most vital democracy in this continent, the third economic power in the world, the Basic Law does not impotence democracy (.), The Basic Law puts all weapons in the hands of free citizens to break these structures. Died – I was the United Nations special rapporteur on the right to food for 8 years, I really saw a lot of terrible things: the same always died, from Mongolia to Jokotan, Guatemala, Favela in Brazil, Kalampas in the Smoky Mountains, in Manila etc. I say something simple: when you talk, march, think, dream, waste, you spend life energy, it has to be replaced by liquid or food and this food gain is measured scientifically in calories, in a subtropical climate an adult needs per day 2200 calories, and if this calorie intake does not come, then it crumbles – it is a terrible agony – (ML agony, i.e. agony) I grew up in a happy environment in Switzerland, like many many people, that death in one Extinction, slow, peaceful extinction is, it’s not true: the body’s fat and sugar reserves are used up first, then the infections come into metabolism, which is very, very painful, then the immune system breaks down, then the muscle system breaks down, you see, South Sudan, or now in Yemen, on TV, when the kids who like small animals lie in the dust and cannot move, and then death comes. It’s terribly painful, and it happens everywhere, day and night, millions of times on this planet. About 70 million people die each year, leave this, yes, our planet, you will also experience this, unfortunately also me, 70 million, of these 70 million people, 72 exactly, who died last year, are 18 percent hungry or its immediate aftermath, on a planet overflowing with wealth, now! It wasn’t always like that, but today, on a planet that is overflowing with wealth, hunger and its direct consequences are still the first cause of death, that’s absurd, it can be done … the massacre is going on in icy normality, everyone knows that, everyone knows that, and you know exactly what the structures are that hunger…. (namely?) these are, for example, the stock market speculations, on basic foodstuffs, you can buy rice certificates in the Deutsche Bank in Hamburg, in the branch, on the rice price, on basic foodstuffs rice, grain and corn, that is 75 percent average in world consumption, and when the rice price rises or the grain price rises…. So that works … (gesticulates up and down). rises, then the seniors make. Hedge fund big bank huge profits, and in the most kallist (?) Cities in the world, in the Kalampas of Lima, for example, where women have to buy the daily food for their children with very little money, they can no longer buy the food because they buy it can’t pay.

ML I would like to address a story because it affects us all and very directly, – Congo! Our cell phones, cell phones, laptops, everything we use on mobile devices, smartphones etc. – the coltan that is in these devices is preferably mined there and before we talk about what you saw there Let’s take a very short section, which documents the conditions under which this raw material is mined there, please.

FILM from 44:23 HERE (Tagesschau 8.12.2016)

So are the the conditions under which coltan is mined there today?

JZ Yes, my book is called: "What’s so bad about capitalism?" And that’s an example of it. That I saw. I don’t have a cell phone, I will never have one because of … what I saw. You said it right: coltan 80%, 81% of the world’s coltan from this metal is mined in the Eastern Congo, Nor Ituri, etc. under the following conditions:

[For understanding the text see also below in the original of the book *]

The coltan is in very fragile rock, and therefore the shafts are very narrow, and only children, 10-, 12-year-old girls, boys, can be lowered there, and are lowered on ropes, 10, 20 meters around that To mine coltan, under terrible … fear! they are afraid, and there are spills that suffocate, are guarded by militias, – (militias who guard, WHY?) it is so, the Coltan … I have had enough trials on my neck, I will put it exactly , it is local or Indian or Pakistani or Lebanese small business owners who exploit (control, exploit) these coltan mines, pay the militias who guard them, terrorize the children, etc. etc. then the Coltan is sold to the Scheka mines the state Minuperve company in Konka? , a very corrupt association, and they then sell the Coltan to Glencore, to Freeport, to the big, global mining companies, which don’t want to have anything to do with child labor, otherwise they have a problem in civil society (is bad imagination), Coltan on truck, to Ruengeli Goma, the Rwandan border, through Rwanda, Kenya, Mombasa to the port on the ship, red sea, Suez Canal etc. And this coltan – we pay for it with the lives of the children, one can ask, everything is known that the children experience, and I say again that it could be my child, your child … and still , the Pied Piper, these mine barons, who recruit in the giant country,? kiu, for example, from the Baforero, the Bashi, the great cultural peoples who live there in misery. The children know about the horror that awaits them, the mothers too, but the children know that if they are not let down and endure this fear and follow the pied piper, the family will die of hunger at home, yes?

ML But how can you prevent that? 47:33 (until 50:05)

JZ But now there was hope, I will come back, if I may say so: Obama in his last term – under the pressure of the Black Caucus, the black representation of the House of Representatives and also the very lively American civil society, that is yes very vital, has an Executive Order, not a law that passes through Congress, an Executive Order Conflict Minerals, so has prohibited Coltan Conflict Minerals, which is mined under such horrible conditions, from wax (?) every day is banned in America. Conflict minerals!

ML Okay, so it could go

JZ But what happened then … Glencord, what do I say – my book is there to show examples with examples only: the omnipotence of multinational corporations, the hierarchies of globalized capital – Glencord, Rio Tinto, Freeport etc. etc. they have mobilized , and have against the government of the strongest state in the world, you have to imagine, not against Albania or Mongolia or Malawi, but they said Washington: well Is that possible Not! We are prevented from maximizing profits, we do not accept the law, Trump has come to power, on the third working day he liquidated the law. (Okay.) Deleted without replacement! And that’s the situation, and this horror – the film is very concrete! (yes, absolutely!) and very well – this terrible child murder continues, day after day, night after night, in icy normality, and we need our cell phones, the fuselages? Also needs coltan … etc. (that’s in a lot of places, exactly!) And we are somehow accomplices in it. And there is anyway – I’ll say it again! – no impotence in democracy – if we were to discuss together now – Honduras or Beijing etc. but in Germany, in the heart of Western Europe, in the most vital democracy there is no impotence, we cannot tolerate that.

ML Thank you very much! Roger that. Thank you very much. (50:06) (Applause) Insanity! (Applause) Ms. Dreier, they wanted to …

Malu Dreier: Yes, just a word, I don’t want to stop it, but I think that Mr. Ziegler is right, that we have a real obligation to provide for it in Germany and internationally and to use all our strength again and again, no matter Regardless of whether it is about arms exports or things like that, you can only, if not, exterminate child labor if you tackle it internationally, in joint actions, agreements, it simply has to remain our obligation, and I confess that me also because I really think that we cannot just consume without understanding what is behind it. We have to look at where the products come from and we also have a duty to ensure that we are internationally committed to ensuring that this is abolished. Child labor must not exist in the world! (51:04)

Example Congo:

First of all: here (Literature Festival Litcologne)

You should also know this interview: here (Aargauer Zeitung)

And how does it go on? One possibility (I also have grandchildren):

ISBN 978-3-10-397401-0

Only one of the memoranda on page 295 is cited (see also here):

Home is where it doesn’t matter whether I exist.


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