Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Corruption

It ocurred to me as I was watching the news last week that the most important story was not the racism row on Big Brother or the storms (which certainly disrupted my day) but the corruption probe into an arms deal with Saudi Arabia.

First thing's first, why the hell are we selling arms to Saudi Arabia? I despair that we don't seem to learn from history. Saudi Arabia is a regime with terrible human right violations. In all likelihood we'll be at war them in 20 years, just like we're at war with Iraq 20 years after selling them weapons. Why do we do this?

But not only that but the government closes down an investigation of corruption in the arms deal between BAE and Saudi Arabia because of "security reasons." And to hear Blair defend this decision saying, "our relationship with Saudi Arabia is vitally important for our country...that strategic interest comes first." Which is basically saying that Saudi Arabia can do what the hell it likes and we will go along because Saudi Arabia has "strategic importance" - just like Iraq had stragic importance in opposing Iran. Blair seemed to me to be admitting that corruption had taken place but had decided to shut down an investigation because the Saudis wouldn't like it. My opinion of Blair just gets lower and lower. This government is entirely corrupt. This is an utter rejection of the rule of law. This is so blantantly unethical and probably illegal.

On the subject, I recently found out about DESO - the Defence Export Services Organisation. This is a government department with the sole purpose of working for the arms trade industry. This mean that British state taxpayers' money is going towards a department with the sole perpose of working for private arms companies in bringing about arms deals. Follow the link for details of the campaign to shut it down.

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