Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Prince Charles goes to the Durbar

Prince Charlie cometh to Northern Nigeria. They are laying on a Durbar for him, and doubtless a bit of polo will be arranged. One always wonders the real reason behind such visits. Usually with royal jaunts, there's an arms deal lurking in the background. Or perhaps this time there's something political going on - I'll leave you to figure out what that might be..

Talking of weapons, notice from this article that the companies that make up the British arms trade are willing to accept they are corrupt, using the importance of the arms industry for the British economy as defence (as well as the age old argument of not wanting to lose out to the French). The UK's record on arms sales is something to be hideously ashamed of - who can forget the badly concealed (in terms of their use) sales of British Aerospace's Hawks to Indonesia (used to repress the East Timorese) and who can be proud of the UK's recent foot-dragging on international legislation against cluster bombs? Every day, serious injuries and deaths are occurring in southern Lebanon, thanks to these truly nasty munitions. But from the British Government's perspective, keeping the sales figures up is all that matters - who cares who dies or is maimed? One thing is sure - you'll never get Charlie talking about the evil of cluster bombs, unlike Diana, who made a big deal out of land mines all those years ago. Meanwhile, the Scottish air-apparent has signalled his intention to commission the new generation of Trident nukes, costing the tax payer billions and billions of pounds, in direct contravention of the nuclear non-proliferation treaty. Tosser.

The hidden logic of the arms trade is obvious, once you think about it: if you have weapons to sell, are you going to try to sell in conflict-free areas, or are you going to sell to volatile states in conflict with their neighbours? Both the British and the French arms industries have excelled at prolonging war and conflict in Africa, as elsewhere across the globe.


Anonymous,  11:09 am  

During the Biafran war, the Nigerian Civil war, France sold weapons for cash to the Biafrans and on credit to the Federal Nigerian State... Not only did they prolong a war, they prolonged a war where they already knew who the victor would be. Not sure that Britain has sunk to that level of immorality, but I wouldn't put it past them.

houstonmacbro 12:21 pm  

i'm always hopeful of this younger generation of crowns. remember they were raised by their mom too and therefore have a bit of her real world concerns deep in their dna.

Anonymous,  5:51 pm  

Pack your bags kids, we're going on a flight of fancy.

What possible evidence do you have to back up a ridiculous assertion that a Royal visit involves arms trading? Sheesh, but you have an overactive imagination!

Jeremy 5:58 pm  

Its the reality dude. Why do you think the Saxe-Coburg-Gothas have such a big thing for the House of Saud? Do you think Charlie really likes hanging with Wahabi fruitcakes? Whenever prominent politicians go a travelling, there's always a deal behind the scenes. When the Kashmir crisis was boiling a couple of years ago, the British sold weapons to both sides! You'll note that Blair made frequent 'peace' visits just at this time. The hypocrisy is shocking.

The arms trade is pure evil masking itself as good business. Robin Cooke (RIP) promised an 'ethical foreign policy' back in 1997. The Blair years have been anything but. Erstwhile lefties got blinded by the headlights of big business. No wonder BAE & co love new Labour!

Anonymous,  7:19 pm  

And you know this for sure, right? You and your feelers in the corridors of power.

Suuuuure. I believe you.

dami 8:19 pm  

i bet he will be given another title "son of the soil"

i wonder why you are linking this with arms trade?
you mean this farmer charles is receivng kickbacks from bae and co?

Anonymous,  8:35 pm  

fred and jeremy should get hitched...aunty bibi e ma binu o

Jeremy 9:22 pm  

Anyone who wants to find out more about the evil of the arms trade and economic alternatives to countries making and selling weapons (and land mines) to fragile regimes - go here:

Anonymous,  10:07 pm  

Studying International Relations, I can tell you Jeremy is correct. Arms trade generates 25 billion pounds for the UK. Furthermore, the UK is the world's second arms exporter after the US. I will not be surprised if Charlie is going to Nigeria for a little bit of dealing-and-selling of AK45's(or watever is en vogue in weapons technology)

Anonymous,  10:11 am  

Fred, now who's being naive?

Anonymous,  10:39 pm  

you are studying int relations?
hope you are not in the usa, money down the drain mate, money down the bloody drain!

Anonymous,  7:02 pm  

fred, wake up!!

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