Wednesday 14 August 2013

Here's a thought - lets stop selling arms to Egypt!

As terror continues to dominate the streets and squares of Cairo and Alexandria, our prayers are with the ordinary people of Egypt. Whatever our governments feelings about President Morsi's year in office, and the US and UK refusal to see his demise as the result of a military coup, surely there may be second thoughts about his replacement.

The army is out of control, believing it has the right to get away with murder. This power it feels it has does not come from any sense of justice and democracy - it comes from the barrel of the gun. Egypt has one of the most powerful armies in the world, and the US arms dealers have happily supplied it with all it desired, regardless of who was in charge of it. When Mubarak ruled with horrendous human rights violations - we armed him to the teeth. When the Arab Spring toppled him, we can remember Cameron and the UK arms dealers swooping in as fast as a speeding bullet. They were all happy to sell arms to Morsi, and then to even support the military coup that subsequently deposed him last month.

When will we learn? The answer is to strengthen democratic and civilian institutions, not to pour so much funding into military solutions and the sale of armaments.

So, in the upcoming DSEI arms fair to be held in London in a few weeks time - will representatives from Egypt be allowed to plan their next purchases, ready for use again against their own people?

Lets say no. Lets join in the protests outside the worlds biggest arms fair on the 8th Sept, lets say enough is enough. No more arming the generals, and watching them  use the weapons on their own people. Lets stop this violence at its source - the companies who encourage the use of weapons of war regardless of the legitimacy of the regime.

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