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Articles from the Peace News log: Arms trade
Articles from the Peace News log.
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On 10 September, DSEi invades London. DSEi, or Defence & Security Equipment International, is the world’s largest international arms trade fair, and is held every two years at the London ExCeL Centre.
One of the most touted arguments in favour of arms production is employment. Companies and politicians constantly make the claim that a reduction in arms development means a loss of jobs.
However, that doesn’t have to be the case, and some alternatives to arms trade may actually be better for workers and the economy.
In many nations with arms trade industries, governments subsidise arms trade-related jobs with taxpayer money. As of May 2011, the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) estimated the UK arms export subsidies at around £700 million per year.
The City Circle held its weekly public meeting at the Abrar House Friday evening, featuring two experts on the international campaign against arms trading.
In less than two weeks, London will play host to the world’s largest international arms trade fair. The city will welcome 30,000 arms dealers and 1,400 exhibitors or companies to the ExCeL Centre for Defence & Security Equipment International (DSEi), which is held here every two years.
But for many Londoners, and campaigners from all over the world, DSEi is not a welcome event.
Leading up the three-day fair, which kicks off 10 September, activists have organized vigils and demonstrations to highlight major concerns about arms trade.
The meeting on 30 August was simply called ‘The Fair is Here.’
Speakers Kirsten Bayes and Barnaby Pace addressed about 40 members of the surrounding communities and answered questions from the audience.
Kirsten Bayes is a long-time campaigner for various peace and social justice movements. She started campaigning against DSEi in 2003, and in 2011 she joined the Stop the Arms Fair coalition team.
Stop the Arms Fair is a coalition of groups, such as Occupy London and Campaign Against the Arms Trade (CAAT).
A sign at the entrance to the Defense and Security Equipment International arms fair warns that visitors must wear business dress. The pinstriped suits, school ties and polished shoes shroud the event in sham respectability. However, the dress code does not extend to sales staff. Here, the main aim is to entice....Read More
As the world’s largest arms fair, DSEi is part of a wider shift in the commercialisation of war. Although arms companies have always profited from conflict, military production was previously linked to the perceived needs of the state.
In the 1990s this changed. Arms companies responded to the reduction of military budgets at the end of the Cold War by expanding beyond state boundaries, merging into multinationals and selling to almost any country willing to buy. Caught between the national and multinational, promising defence while selling war, the international arms trade is riddled with contradictions.
Arms companies sell military equipment to opposing sides of border disputes, to developing countries at inflated prices, and to repressive regimes for ‘crowd control’. Many of these deals take place at DSEi....Read More
US Arms Manufacturer Lockheed Martin has the contracy for the 2011 UK Census in March this year....Read More
(Updated as at 18-03-2011)
US Arms Manufacturer Lockheed Martin has the contract for the 2011 UK Census in March this year....Read More