Arms Trade

UK Arms Export Controls Are Broken and the Consequences Are Deadly

Andrew Smith | Posted 03.08.2015 | UK Politics
Andrew Smith

When countries like the UK sell weapons it doesn't just facilitate the attacks they are used in, it also sends a message of support to the governments that are carrying them out. For this to change it will require more than a few platitudes about human rights. It will need a complete overhaul of government priorities and an end to the hypocrisy that is at the heart of foreign policy.

One Year on From Gaza: The UK Must Stop Arming Israel

Andrew Smith | Posted 03.07.2015 | UK Politics
Andrew Smith

The issue goes beyond the immediate humanitarian impact. When the UK sells weapons it not only facilitates future attacks, it also signals approval for the Israeli government and its pursuit of what amounts to the collective punishment and oppression of the people of Gaza.

The UK is Complicit in the Destruction of Yemen

Andrew Smith | Posted 29.05.2015 | UK
Andrew Smith

The bombardment has been supported by the US and the UK, with both governments giving political and military support to the Saudi regime.

UK Military Spending Should Be Cut, Regardless of Who Wins in May

Andrew Smith | Posted 09.06.2015 | UK Politics
Andrew Smith

Despite recent cuts, at £37 billion the UK military budget is still far higher than in a number of much bigger countries, such as Brazil or India. It also represents a far higher percentage of national GDP than any other European country and almost all NATO members.

Should Britain Be Arming Ukraine?

Iain Overton | Posted 12.05.2015 | UK Politics
Iain Overton

Before we throw weapons at the Ukrainian crisis, we need to ask two fundamental questions: does Ukraine really need our arms?  And what would happen to them once the violence ended?

UK Arms Exports Support State Repression

Andrew Smith | Posted 09.05.2015 | UK Politics
Andrew Smith

Far from keeping us secure, events like this only strengthen the UK's ties to brutal dictatorships and entrench the government's role as a global arms seller. Furthermore, they undermine the UK's political credibility on human rights and strengthen the position of repressive regimes.

King Abdullah and the UK: When Arms Sales Trump Human Rights

Andrew Smith | Posted 28.03.2015 | UK Politics
Andrew Smith

Many of the gushing tributes to King Abdullah have painted him as a man of peace and a force for good. In reality he was the figurehead of one of the most violent and oppressive governments in the world.

How Arms Companies Fuelled and Exacerbated the First World War

Andrew Smith | Posted 09.02.2015 | UK Politics
Andrew Smith

By the end, 16million people had been killed and 20million wounded in a war that had devastated and destroyed whole cities. Civilians and soldiers, often from poor backgrounds, paid the terrible price for a battle that was brought on by the rich and powerful rulers of competing imperialist powers...Very few benefited from the killing. It did, however, line the pockets of arms companies and their shareholders.

An Urgent Appeal On Behalf Of Arms Dealers

The Huffington Post UK | Posted 12.11.2014 | UK Comedy

War. Repression. Do you care about these things? These people do. Watch our charity appeal on behalf of arms dealers everywhere, created by David S...

Human Rights Are Not for Sale: Why the UK Must Stop Arming Bahrain

Andrew Smith | Posted 17.12.2014 | UK Politics
Andrew Smith

Arms sales are not apolitical acts. On one hand, they bolster the buyers by giving them a British endorsement as a fig-leaf of respectability, but they also buy the UK government's political support and compliance. As the crackdown continues to escalate it is becoming increasingly clear that decisions being made in support of arms sales are having serious consequences for the victims of state repression.

These Chinese-Made Torture Tools Are Being Traded At British Arms Fairs

The Huffington Post UK | Jessica Elgot | Posted 23.09.2014 | UK

Cruel instruments of torture manufactured in China, including electric shock wands and neck-and-wrist cuffs have been advertised and sold at UK arms f...

Reinventing the Clyde and Putting Human Rights at the Heart of Scottish Foreign Policy

Andrew Smith | Posted 03.11.2014 | UK Politics
Andrew Smith

With the polls tightening and the bookmakers shortening their odds, there is now a very real chance that Scottish people will vote for independence in two weeks time... However, one of the most positive contributions has been the Scottish Government's commitment to a 'do no harm' arms exports policy in the event of a Yes vote.

Government Could Be Sued Over Arms Trade With Israel

The Huffington Post UK | Posted 17.08.2014 | UK

Campaigners have threatened the Government with legal action over its failure to suspend exports of military equipment to Israel. A law firm acting...

Disarming Our Culture: Why the Science Museum Must End Its Support for the Arms Trade

Andrew Smith | Posted 05.09.2014 | UK Politics
Andrew Smith

The Science Museum in London is among the most popular tourist attractions in the country, but on Monday 14 July it will be opening its doors to some of the biggest arms companies and most oppressive regimes in the world.

The UK Is Betraying the People of Bahrain

Andrew Smith | Posted 05.08.2014 | UK Politics
Andrew Smith

Without justice there can be no peace in Bahrain, and that won't change as long as the UK is happy to promote and provide political cover for an illegitimate government that is inflicting untold misery on its own citizens. Only by ending the political and military support that is strengthening the regime can the UK ensure that it is promoting human rights and acting the best interests of the people of Bahrain.

What Lies Behind the UK's Relationship With Saudi Arabia?

Andrew Smith | Posted 16.06.2014 | UK Politics
Andrew Smith

You would be hard pushed to find a country where human rights mean less than in Saudi Arabia... Despite the widespread human rights abuses, the regime is not short of international support.

Jessica Elgot

Sanctions On Russia? Not When Arms Trade Is Worth £86m To UK

HuffingtonPost.com | Jessica Elgot | Posted 05.03.2014 | UK

Britain has sold more than £86m of sniper rifles, ammunition, drones and laser technology to Russia in just over a year, it can be revealed. There...

Mehdi's Morning Memo: Cameron's Cover-Up?

Huffington Post | Mehdi Hasan | Posted 05.03.2014 | UK Politics

Here are the five things you need to know on Wednesday 5 March 2014... 1) CAMERON'S COVER-UP? The Daily Mail, which yesterday broke the story of...

Distracted by a Big, Shiny Arms Deal - David Cameron Has Abandoned a British Citizen, Please Help

Alastair Sloan | Posted 17.03.2015 | UK
Alastair Sloan

The Brits are big in the weapons game too, in fact our tiny isle is second only to the mighty U.S of A in arms manufacturing and exporting.

Backing Bahrain: Britain Can't Promote Human Rights While Simultaneously Arming Dictatorships

Andrew Smith | Posted 17.03.2014 | UK Politics
Andrew Smith

There are few countries where human rights mean as little as they do in Bahrain. Torture and repression are practised regularly by a government that has been suppressing debate and has only intensified its systematic crackdown on opposition voices since the Arab Spring.

Killer Robots Take a Hit

Niall Couper | Posted 25.01.2014 | UK Tech
Niall Couper

Coming soon near you it's The Terminator. Yes, folks the fully autonomous weapon is firmly on the horizon. Whether on the battlefield or targeted on the streets, these weapons should have no place in warfare or policing. But a future where the decision on whether you live or die could soon be made by a Killer Robot. It sounds like science fiction, but the reality is moving ever closer.

'It's Very Important To Have Access To Legal Weapons'

The Huffington Post UK | Asa Bennett | Posted 09.09.2013 | UK Politics

Boris Johnson has launched a robust defence of the DSEI arms fair, as critics warn that Russia should be banned from attending the London arms show as...

UK Arms Exports - Lessons Still to Be Learned from the Arab Spring

Roy Isbister | Posted 29.09.2013 | UK Politics
Roy Isbister

It's possible I'm being too harsh on the Government. Maybe the remaining 130 licences for exports to Egypt are OK, and the risk that any of this other equipment might be misused is minor. But I suspect we need more revocations now, and a tighter policy on actually issuing licences in future. At the very least we need more information.

The 'Arms for Dictators' Scandal Isn't New - It Is Cross-Party, Well-Established and Has Been Going on for Too Long

James Elliott | Posted 16.09.2013 | UK Politics
James Elliott

The fringe issue of arms export criteria became headline news today, with the Independent's splash on an 'arms for dictators' scandal. A parliamentary...

Mehdi's Morning Memo: Arms For Dictators

Huffington Post | Mehdi Hasan | Posted 17.07.2013 | UK Politics

The five things you need to know on Wednesday 17 July 2013... 1) ARMS FOR DICTATORS From the Independent's splash: "The Government has issued...