The Defence and Security Equipment International (DSEI) arms fair, 11th to 15th September at ExCel, London, was “a dark stain on this country’s already tarnished reputation”, said Caroline Lucas MP and she is quite right. At the arms fair, you could snap up ballistic missiles, blockbuster bombs, fighter planes, helicopter gunships, submarines, warships, communication systems, artillery, tanks and all sorts of stuff for penetrating and destroying these things if bought and deployed by your rivals. And round the back of the stand, strictly on the QT, you can pick up water cannon, tear gas grenades, Tasers and torture equipment in order to deal with all those non-military trouble-makers, who organise demos, protests and like nuisances. All good fun and business as usual. Our arms industry is worth £6 billion a year proudly proclaimed our Defence (aka war) secretary at a DSEI conference.
Let’s not forget that all these murderous devices are made in British factories that are among the most unionised in the country. Trade unionists are making these weapons and will defend their jobs, just as the GMB union is vehemently opposed to any abandonment of Trident, refusing to believe that members’ skills could equally be employed on green technology and products not intended for killing people.
Thus, capitalism sucks us all into its voracious maw.