Tuesday, 22 May 2007

What Ethical Policy Is That?

When your Government includes a line in it's foreign policy that states it will refuse to sell arms to countries where there is 'an identifiable risk that the weapons could be used aggressively against another country or it's own population', you can expect not to see any of the 20 countries it lists as abusive of Human Rights on its arms-sold-to invoice.
With our ethical arms policy not to sell weapons to countries we judge as a cause for concern firmly in place, this weeks NGO Saferworld report on the sell of UK arms around the globe should make comfortable reading for the second largest arms exporter.
£400m worth of military equipment to Indonesia, Oops.
Military hardware including vehicles and heavy machine guns to Colombia. Oh dear.
More than £110m worth of military equipment to Israel during its war with Lebanon. Hmmm. Despite an EU arms embargo, £500m worth of military equipment to China. £10m worth of sniper rifles to Russia. Well, see, the thing with that is...
So out of the 20 blacklisted countries we deem as too quick to abuse Human Rights if they got their mucky hands on our military hardware, who haven't we sold to?
North Korea, the other 19 have either suddenly become pillars of the global community, trustworthy enough not to kill thousands on a whim or our ethical arms policy lasted as long as it took for these 19 abusive regimes to open their wallets.
Yep, i thought so also.


iMuslim said...

In-house mismanagement. One part of government writes these kinds of ethical policies, but the other parts missed the memo? I dunno... no big surprise from me, that's for sure.

Deadman said...

I like how Israel tops your list even though the amount sold is far less than is sold to China, who is guilty of far worse human rights abuses.

Okay, woot, relevant Israel reference. Now you can all pile on and tell me I'm full of shit as to the human rights abuses. My work here is finished anyway.

Still love ya, Lucy. And that negligee looks spectacular on you.


Anonymous said...

Wow. That was. Wasn't it?

For the record, I counted it at third in the list. Relevant, though, hell yeah. I didn't get that the list was in the order of loathesomeness from most to least, but I agree that China is a dictatorship that we are all too cozy with despite our rhetoric about standing against tyranny, and is a great human rights violator. If I seem to be weaseling away from a comparison, it's because I'm not convinced that Israel really fits the definition, at least any more than we do.

I find it interesting that while Russia used to compete with the west in the international arms market, now they buy arms from the west. What a heartwarming display of trust.

Lucy- I'm not sure what you call it over there, we yanks use the term "Peeping Tom". Might want to mind the drapes.

Deadman said...

Yeah, oops, third. Caught me skimming, dammit.

O' Tim said...

imuslim - the best we get over here lately is presidential signing statements. Now that I think of it, Bush does resemble Alfred E. Neuman*

"What, Me Worry?"

*Apologies for the obscure reference to some classic American humor. GOOGLE!

Daniel said...

Mark said his "work here is done." Does that mean he's going to be crucified soon?

Cheezy said...

Soon? Surf around a while, Daniel... you'll find that it happens on a daily basis! Most of the time he climbs up there himself :)

Paula said...


Anonymous said...

O'Tim -

Here's an assist:


O' Tim said...

Nice pass, Joe - LOL!

"Always look on the bright side of life."

- Jehovah