Eighteen

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As virulent capitalism charges around the world, claiming righteously that their crushing and obliterating lives is just the unfortunate collateral of the “other side,” organisations across the Globe campaign against the murderous arms trade.

We have witnessed the horrors of what capitalism, in its for-profit, resource grab, has done in the Middle East – and is currently doing in Syria and in Yemen. The British corporations profits, its complicity in the murder, torture and absolute terror the House of Saud is meting out in Yemen amounts to a collective guilt we in the UK must share. Our Government in its selling (and attempts at covering up its sales) to Saudi Arabia make every one of us guilty in the murders of children and their families.

Every sale of one single bullet used to kill a poor person fighting in the wars of the corporations and the rich is a murder we are complicit in. Every child who loses a parent or their own life is a murder we have committed.

We think of the words of Elvis Costello’s anti-war song, “Shipbuilding,” the pay off of the arms trade – jobs. Do we want jobs at any cost? At the cost of children traumatised, maimed and killed?

“Is it worth it?
A new winter coat and shoes for the wife
And a bicycle on the boy’s birthday
It’s just a rumour that was spread around town
By the women and children
Soon we’ll be shipbuilding
Well, I ask you
The boy said “dad, they’re going to take me to task
But I’ll be back by Christmas”
It’s just a rumour that was spread around town
Somebody said that someone got filled in
For saying that people get killed in
The result of this shipbuilding
With all the will in the world
Diving for dear life
When we could be diving for pearls
It’s just a rumour that was spread around town
A telegram or a picture postcard
Within weeks they’ll be re-opening the shipyards
And notifying the next of kin
Once again
It’s all we’re skilled in
We will be shipbuilding
With all the will in the world
Diving for dear life
When we could be diving for pearls”

Here in the UK, non-violent protest group CAAT (Campaign Against the Arms Trade) continues to reveal the murky world of arming those who tear children apart with their missiles and guns. https://www.caat.org.uk/about/international

In seeking to end the arms trade, CAAT’s priorities are:

  • to stop the procurement or export of arms where they might:
    • exacerbate conflict, support aggression, or increase tension
    • support an oppressive regime or undermine democracy
    • threaten social welfare through the level of military spending
  • to end all government political and financial support for arms exports
  • and to promote progressive demilitarisation within arms-producing countries.https://www.caat.org.uk/about

We at Ungagged! totally agree with CAAT’s aims and principles and their campaign for a wider security policy which would have the opportunity to reallocate resources according to actual threats and benefits, including addressing major causes of insecurity such as inequality and climate change.

Fight back against these murders happening in your name. Join CAAT or other peace organisation and campaign to stop the rich weapon and war profiteers from using our democracy to kill in our name.

“We should be diving for pearls.”

 

Image by Debra Torrance 

Written by Neil Scott

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