Friday, December 19, 2008

Learn to kill training

Kids Learn that Killing Is Fun at the Army's Lethal New Theme Park

Kids Learn that Killing Is Fun at the Army's Lethal New Theme Park
By Penny Coleman, AlterNet
The Army's new recruitment tool lets high-tech video game centers desensitize, condition, train and even enlist America's youth. Read more »

UK Atomic weapons establishment sold Crazy

The UK Atomic Weapons Establishment, which makes and maintains the warheads for Britain’s nuclear missiles, has come under the control of US companies after the government sold its one-third stake. Ministers were accused Thursday night of trying to conceal the change in ownership after failing to make an announcement to parliament.
FT 19th Dec 2008

The UK Atomic Weapons Establishment, which makes and maintains the warheads for Britain’s nuclear missiles, has come under the control of US companies after the government sold its one-third stake.

Ministers were accused Thursday night of trying to conceal the change in ownership after failing to make an announcement to parliament.

The sale of the Aldermaston facility to Jacobs is likely to reignite controversy over the independence of the UK’s deterrent.

The US already supplies the technology for the weapons but it was the recognition that the UK needed an independent nuclear deterrent after the second world war which prompted the government to develop the facility.

However, there was no announcement from the government, which was accused of turning the matter into “a farce”.

BNFL only put up a short statement on its website Thursday afternoon confirming the sale. The Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform had no official comment.

Gerald Howarth, shadow defence minister, described the decision not to announce the sale to parliament as “unacceptable”.

“It is consistent with the government’s unwillingness to share matters nuclear with parliament.

“It is not an issue about which we can be cavalier. We need to know what the implications are of this.”

Nick Harvey, Liberal Democrat defence spokesman, said: “The government appears guilty of concealing all this from parliament and the public. There has been a huge degree of suspicion over what has been going on at Aldermaston, particularly over recruitment and how this fits with our obligations under the non-proliferation treaty.

“None of this has been properly explained. Why are we bothering with the fiction of being independent and separate from the US when this is clearly not the case? It sounds to me like this is turning into a farce.”

AWE is jointly owned by the government, through its stake in BNFL; Serco, the British support services group; and Lockheed Martin, the US defence company.

Jacobs had been competing against another US engineer, Fluor Corporation, for the stake since January. The US company did not disclose the purchase price but estimates in January valued it at £100m ($150m).

Bob King, officer of the Prospect union for AWE, said Jacobs was well-known to staff and he hoped the company would provide some financial stability.

But politically he admitted it was “a sad day” that Britain’s nuclear deterrent was now majority US controlled.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

CAAT at "The Spirit of Christmas Fair"

ol Saint Nick comes to town to take "Clarion Events" to task, as they have recently purchased contracts to run five of the biggest arms fairs on the planet. They also run " The Spirit of Christmas Fair." Helping facilitate the flow of weapons to government like Saudi Arabia, Columbia and China doesn't really sit well with the Christmas message of peace and goodwill to all men. Clarion have now been added to the naughty list for their unethical standards.

Friday, December 12, 2008

New Videos from CMCInternational

* Cluster Bombs Banned!
* Oslo Signing Ceremony of the Convention on Cluster Munitions

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Armed & Dangerous,

CAAT launches new campaign to End the Uncivil Service

CAAT's new campaign, UKTI: Armed & Dangerous, was launched at the
National Gathering on 8 November.

UKTI (UK Trade & Investment) is a government department which exists
“to help business succeed internationally.” As part of
this innocent sounding mission, it is now using tax-payers' money to
sell arms to conflict zones and repressive regimes, with little
regard for the devastating global consequences of its activities.
CAAT is calling for an end to government support of this deadly work.
We need your help!

Find out more, sign our online petition and order campaign materials
Sign the UKTI petition calling on UKTI to stop using tax-payers' money to help private companies proliferate arms.
Read CAAT's UKTI campaign briefing also available to download as a PDF

Sarah Waldron Core Campaigns Co-ordinator Phone 0207 281 0297

International Business Wales Trafalgar House 5 Fitzalan Place Cardiff Cf24 0ED

Tel (UK): 0845 010 3300 Tel (Overseas): +44 (0) 1443 845500


Wales and the Aerospace Sector

Wales has a vibrant aerospace and defence cluster with six of the World’s top ten companies based in Wales - Airbus, BAE Systems, EADS, GE Aviation, General Dynamics and Hawker Beechcraft.

The sector employs over 20,000 people directly, many others indirectly and comprises some 180 companies, of which more than 160 are small to medium size enterprises (SMEs).

A sophisticated supply chain, the location of the major primes such as Airbus UK and GE Aviation, combined with 1st tier suppliers like Doncasters, Magellan, Nordam Europe, Babcock Defence Systems, GE Aviation makes Wales one of the most important aerospace and defence regions in the UK. The industry makes a valuable contribution to the economic success of Wales.

How Aerospace Wales Forum can help

A unique partnership between the Welsh Assembly Government and industry through the Aerospace Wales Forum to provide a one-stop-shop to facilitate the success of your business. Wales has a vibrant aerospace and defence cluster – six of the World’s top ten companies are based in Wales: Airbus, BAE Systems, EADS DS, GE Aviation, General Dynamics and Hawker Beechcraft. If you are looking for new growth or expansion opportunities please contact us.


Wales is proving a successful and cost-effective base for over 180 aerospace and defence companies, employing 20,000 people. They include big names such as EADS DS, BAE Systems, GE Aviation, NORDAM Europe, General Dynamics, QinetiQ, Raytheon, SELEX Sensors & Airborne Systems, Qioptiq, British Airways and Airbus UK, and emerging new technology firms.

Find out what your company could achieve in this skilled, ready and resource-rich country

"Wales has something unique at St. Athan" here

Defence and homeland security...Our long-standing military connections mean Wales is home to some of the world’s leading defence and aerospace companies.

How International Business Wales can help

International Business Wales (IBW) is the international trade and inward investment arm of the Welsh Assembly Government. International Business Wales offers a wide range of services to assist Welsh companies achieve success in international markets. International Business Wales has an active network of Trade Advisors throughout Wales who engage with businesses on a 1-2-1 basis. Key services include:-

  • The International Trade Development
  • The International Trade Opportunities - In-market sales leads and support services
  • Business Development Visits
  • Supported Trade Delegations and Overseas Exhibitions
  • Access to the Commercial Sections’ Services in British Embassies and Consulates throughout the world

International Business Wales’ support network is global, able to unearth new opportunities and help convert them into real business.

Useful contacts

Contact: Paul Lindsay at Aerospace Wales; Telephone +44 (0)1656 655210

Contact: Debbie Pritchard-Jones at International Business Wales:; Telephone +44 (0)2920 898602

UK Trade & Investment Contact:
Publication date: 12/05/2008

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


Ending arms companies' influence in the corridors of power is crucial to
defeating the arms trade.

That's why CAAT's new core campaign focuses on UKTI, the government unit that
promotes UK exports.

Arms make up less than 2% of UK exports - but UKTI devotes as many staff to the
arms industry as to all civil sectors combined.

This is an exciting time to campaign. The last two years have seen a sharp rise
in public opposition to the arms trade in the wake of controversy over BAE and
Saudi arms deals. Now we have a chance to build on this momentum and make a


Sign the petition at

And if you have any questions, feel free to email Sarah Waldron, CAAT's Core
Campaigns Co-ordinator, at

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Blood at the Crossroads:

Making the case for a global Arms Trade Treaty

amnesty usa. The world is reaching a crossroads in deciding how to control the arms trade. Governments must act now to create effective and robust regulation. This report shows through illustrative cases how that trade contributes to serious violations of human rights in different parts of the world. In particular, it seeks to help demonstrate why the establishment of a global Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) is an urgent necessity and how an ATT could work to save lives, preserve livelihoods and enhance respect for human rights.

Read full report (PDF)

One Million Weapons to Iraq; Many Go Missing
Pratap Chatterjee September 22nd, 2008
An Alabama company controlled by a billionaire Kuwaiti family is the biggest supplier of guns to Iraq. Th ese weapons were paid for by the Pentagon which has lost track of them. A new Amnesty international report says that such unrestrained global arms trading schemes may have catastrophic human rights consequences.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

With just five weeks until a groundbreaking new treaty banning cluster bombs opens for signature in Oslo, we are calling on all governments to put pen to paper and start saving lives. Add your name to the online petition and ensure your government signs the treaty. Your signature really can save lives.
Sign the petition here

The BAE bribery fiasco continues

 The BAE bribery fiasco continues

Fresh allegations of misconduct have been made against arms company
BAE Systems in relation to Saudi arms deals, as the Organisation for
Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) condemned the UK
government for failing to tackle corruption.

Monday, September 15, 2008

OU Partnerships with armed forces?

From 'the spark' newsletter of the OU branch of the UCU May 2008

UCU asks
Q. is the branch against partnerships with the armed forces?
A. UCA nationally and at Branch level , does not oppose students from the armed forces. The Metrix [partnership is different. It raises controversial issues regarding privitisation and the business methods of those we enter into partnerships with. One of the company's has been involved in a series of bribery and industrial espionage cases and another has been condemned for applying 'racial sterotypes' to trecruiting (and sacking) staff. Involvement with Metrix associates the University with the murky world of arms trading. what is the brand message there?

Q. what are the guidelines about
A. The guidelines focus on four main areas - arms trade, animal; welfare, ecological impact and corporate responsibility (including human rights) They set basic requirements that organisations wishing to partner with the University should meet. rather than 'reinvent the wheel' the guidelines are based on those successfully used by the co-operative bank.
They are set out as proposals in a preliminary Branch document which will be presented to senior management in the next month.

Q. Are other universities doing this?
A. while the OU heads into partnerships with arms manufactureres, other universities are going in the other direction. University College London has decided to withdraw all investment from arms companies. St Andrews University and Pembroke college, Cambridge have already done so. UCL has said it is conscious of the negative effect arms investment may have on alumni donations. New Hall and St Catherines colleges, Cambridge, have divested from companies doing business with the Sudanese government. The more 'commercial' universities become, the more strategic partnerships will come under the media spotlight, and influence the attitudes their stakwholders take to them.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Ten bombs or less?

When is a cluster bomb not a cluster bomb although Rae McGrath says the article is wrong. CBU-97 he says is 40 bombs? CBU = Cluster bomb unit!

111 Countries Ban the Use of Cluster Bombs

Biggest producers and users, including Israel and US, do not sign treaty

Janes Defence Systems News here The problem was that, until mid-May, there was no agreed definition of a cluster munition. The treaty text as it now stands bans all cluster munitions except those containing fewer than 10 submunitions, each of which must weigh more than 4 kg. Each of these submunitions must also be able to detect and engage a single target object, be equipped with an electronic self-destruction mechanism and have an electronic self-deactivation feature for the weapon to be exempt.

Director of Landmine UK, Simon Conway, said that although he was pleased with the negotiations, it was now time for Brown to make a stand against the US in order to uphold Britain’s opposition to the weapons. “It is a terrible hypocrisy, on the one hand to say that these weapons cause unacceptable harm and ban them and on the other hand to give a sly nod to the US to continue using them.”

The Dublin conference here

OK google it ....The primary components of this 1,000 pound class weapon are the SUU-66/B Tactical Munitions Dispenser (TMD), 10 BLU-108/B submunitions, and 40 "hockey puck" shaped skeet infrared sensing projectiles...are they both right but is it banned under the new treaty?

Help Ban Cluster Bombs Now! Sign the People's Treaty
The Cluster Munitions Convention's signing ceremony will take place in Oslo, Norway, from 2-3 December 2008. That is only six months to ensure that countries – your country – will be ready to sign the treaty! To keep pressure on governments, sign the People's Treaty now. (02/06/2008, last updated: 04/06/2008) Read more »

CBU-97/CBU-105 Sensor Fuzed Weapon - Dumb Bombs- 11:34
Each CBU-97/B can cover an area of about 500 feet by 1200 feet. Test results indicate that CBU-97 submunitions have a propensity to cluster and that impact ...

CBU-97 Sensor Fuzed Weapon - Dumb Bombs- 29 Jun
The CBU-97 is a 1000-pound class weapon containing sensor-fused submunitions for ... Each CBU-97/B can cover an area of about 500 feet by 1200 feet. ...

Please note that the CBU-97 is also referred to as the CBU-105.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Ban Cluster bombs get out clause?

Treaty piles on pressure to make cluster bombs smarter treaty piles on pressure to make cluster bombs smarter Can you build a "safe" cluster bomb? That is the question facing military...countries in Dublin, Ireland, last week. Cluster bombs scatter many small submunitions, or...

Cluster bomb get out clauseThe non-export version of JSOW is a cluster bomb. Australia has signed on to the new cluster bomb treaty but as New Scientist (7 June p25 Letting Go of Cluster Bombs) points out the cluster bomb treaty has some interesting clauses one of which is that high accuracy fragmentation warheads can be seen as meeting the guidelines of the treaty that allow for cluster bombs which engage single targets rather than a whole area.

Becky Maynard, No More Landmines, 4th Floor, Charles House, 375 Kensington High Street, London, W14 8QH.
Tel: + 44 (0)20 7471 5580 writes to say an enormous thank you for signing the No More Landmines’ petition calling on governments to ban cluster bombs. On May 31st the final text for this groundbreaking and comprehensive new treaty to ban cluster bombs was provisionally agreed in Dublin by the majority of the world's stockpilers, producers and past users of cluster munitions.

The fact that some of the key governments who were pushing for multiple exceptions, transition periods and loopholes to retain stockpiles have adopted the text proposed in Dublin is a real testament to those who stood up to say that they oppose these indiscriminate weapons. Your voice was joined by those of hundreds of thousands of others around the world and made a real difference to the creation of the most significant humanitarian treaty of the decade.

At the Dublin conference campaigners heard first hand of the terrible injuries that cluster bombs cause to innocent civilians. Soraj Ghulam Habib, pictured right, from the Herat Province of Afghanistan was only 10 years old when he lost both legs in a cluster bomb accident. Soraj said that cluster munitions destroyed his dreams - he could not go to school, he couldn’t play with his friends, people laughed at him and called him a beggar. Now 17 years old and back in education, Soraj will spend the rest of his life in a wheelchair but is full of hope that this treaty will completely stigmatize the use of these weapons and that future generations of children will not suffer the same fate as him.

The treaty will be opened for signature in Oslo in December this year but will not come into force until 30 countries have signed and ratified. You can still make a big difference and help to keep the pressure on governments to sign and ratify the treaty as early as possible by signing the People’s Treaty. This is a petition that individuals and groups across the world will be signing to make sure that as many states as possible sign the new treaty from 2-3 December 2008. Just visit if you would like to sign.

RAAF, JSOW and InteroperabilityBy admin ... is treaty consistent, even though Washington didn’t sign it. I am sure Canberra would accept such an interpretation, which means that the effect of this arms control provision is to outlaw cluster munitions for low technology states.Science & Global Security -

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Raytheon Nine Prosecution collapses

Judge thows case out -Maith thu!

At Belfast Laganside court today, the trial of the Raytheon Nine collapsed when the judge threw it out for lack of evidence. The trial of the raytheon Nine has collapsed.

The defendents from Derry Anti War Coalition walked free after the judge dismissed the case for lack of evidence. Throughout the trial the Nine have maintained that their actions were legitimate as an attempt to prevent war crimes. The judge was forced to concede this when he stated that the defendents had acted to prevent destruction in Lebanon. This is a major victory and vindication of the action of the Derry Anti War Coalition and the Raytheon Nine.

The development began to emerge yesterday when, bizarrely, the barrister for the Crown conceded that the 9 were genuine in their belief that Raytheon were active in supplying the US and Isreali war machines in Iraq, Palestine and Lebanon and that sabotaging Raytheon's equipment would disrupt that supply. What the Crown was then asking the jury to do was convict on the strength of the evidence, whether, at the moment of entering Raytheon, the 9 had smashed computers out of anger and wanton destructiveness. barristers for the 9 petitioned the judge to dismiss the case as this was something the jury could not find, given that the Crown had already conceded that they had gone in there with the intention to sabotage in order to disrupt the supply chain. the Judge evidently agreed.

The crown have until tomorrow to decide whether to appeal or not.
send your messages of congrats to

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

UK helps US keep cluster bombs

Cluster bomb ban would force issue - groups The News is ...
Raytheon Cluster Bomb Protest ! ... Cluster munitions or cluster bombs are air-dropped or ground-launched munitions that eject a number of smaller ...

Dear friends,
In the next 72 hours, 109 countries are negotiating to ban cluster munitions -- weapons that, like land mines, kill children long after wars have ended. Immediate pressure is needed, especially on the UK, so click below now to send your message to Gordon Brown:


Final negotiations are underway right now in Dublin, Ireland on a treaty to ban cluster bombs. Arms manufacturers are pushing governments to riddle the treaty with loopholes and delays -- and the final text will be decided in the next 72 hours.

Cluster munitions don't just kill during war. They scatter small, shiny, unexploded "bomblets" on the ground that hold their deadly charge for years. When children pick them up, they are often maimed or killed. Most governments agree that these weapons should be outlawed, but back-room pressure is rising to undercut a strong ban. We're hearing the UK delegation is one of the problems -- so we need to send an avalanche of messages from UK Avaaz members to Gordon Brown (we know his advisers personally and will forward your messages to the heart of Downing Street!)

If enough of us act before the treaty is signed on Friday, we can drown out the weapons merchants and convince our governments, the UK included, to ban cluster bombs once and for all. Click below to send a message, and then forward this email to friends and family:

The treaty to ban cluster munitions is the result of an inspiring, years-long campaign by citizens from around the world -- with victims and survivors of cluster bombs leading the way. One spokesman for the effort, Branislav Kapetanovic, lost his hands, legs, and some of his hearing and eyesight in a cluster-bomb explosion in his native Serbia. He is now in Dublin, pushing for the treaty -- but he took a moment to sent this message to the Avaaz community (you can see a video on the the Avaaz site):
Cluster bombs are one of the most dangerous weapons of today. The majority of their victims are civilians, affecting millions worldwide. They have absolutely no place in a conflict situation.

This week governments have gathered together in Dublin to outlaw this dangerous weapon. This is a historic meeting of the international community. Some governments are trying to undermine and weaken the treaty with loopholes and exceptions. They are trying to position the arms trade over the importance of lives of people like me.

Rich governments don't always listen to victims, but they will listen to you -- their citizens. Please send a strong message to your government now that calls for a treaty with no exception, no loopholes, and no delays.
Advocates like Kapetanovic have faced down enormous odds to reach this point, the brink of victory. Now, as citizens around the world, we can do our part, and raise a massive cry as the negotiators spar over the final text of the treaty. Watch the video, check out a map of countries that produce or use cluster bombs and send a message to your leaders, all from this link:

In 1997, the people-powered International Campaign to Ban Land Mines won a victory for humanity, earning a Nobel Peace Prize by ending the barbaric practice of laying mines in conflict zones. It would not have been possible without the efforts of thousands of ordinary people. This week, we can take the next step towards a more just, more peaceful world -- a world safer for children, and for generations to come.

With hope,

Ben, Pascal, Ricken, Galit, Graziela, Paul, Iain, and Veronique -- the team

PS: You can learn more about this issue at the Stop Cluster Munitions coalition website here:

And here are some news articles about the state of the negotiations:

Saturday, May 24, 2008

War is just a racket - stop the killing

War is Just a Racket: Take a Stand; Dismantle the War Machine; Demilitarize the World! The weapons industry led by the so-called Military-Industrial Complex in the United States and the “Big Money” racketeers that own or control them are the largest and the most powerful terrorist organization in the world. In the last two generations alone, their nefarious weapons have killed more people than were ever slaughtered in the previous 5,700 years.

Sign this petition to stop the killing: here

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Solidarity with the Raytheon 9! Kick Raytheon out of Wales

Palestine burns - Raytheon earns
Iraq burns - Raytheon earns Kick Raytheon out of Wales -
Kick Raytheon out of Wales - Show Solidarity with the Raytheon 9!
5.30 - 6.30, Tuesday 27th May, Transport House (T&G Building), 1 Cathedral Road, Cardiff information here

Called by Stop the St Athan Military Academy Campaign, supported by Cardiff Stop the War Coalition, Cardiff CAAT and other peace groups.

Raytheon - banned by Liverpool Council, the Norwegian and Belgian government, manufacturer of cluster bombs and lethal weapons - has been welcomed to Wales by our politicians with barely a murmer of dissent. They are a key part of the new, privatised UK Military Academy being built in Wales.

Let's be clear, Raytheon are directly implicated in war crimes: In 2003, a Raytheon device hit the Shu'ale market in Baghdad in 2003, killing at least 62 civilians. In 2006 a Raytheon device hit Qana in Lebanon in 2006, killing at least 28 civilians, including 16 children.
By welcoming Raytheon, our politicians are complicit with war crimes.
Rhodri Morgan, First Minister of Wales has defended Raytheon and attacked anti-war campaigners as liars.

Raytheon Nine trial set to start The trial of the “Raytheon Nine” anti-war activists started this week in Belfast, and will last for up to six weeks.
The nine anti-war protesters, occupied and shut down the Derry offices of Raytheon, the fifth biggest arms manufacturer in the world, on Wednesday 9 August 2006 during Israel's war on Lebanon.

The action was part of a wider protest at Raytheon’s complicity in the Israeli bombardment of Lebanon and the ongoing wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Rush messages of support to
For background see:

Unmasking the System - Exposing Welsh Politicians lies about Raytheon

'Who has the power to frame reality-- the power to describe things as they really are, the power to make clear the power relationships in a community, family or country?
To unmask the truth of a situation is to expose the fraudulence of the glowing phrases, the lofty claims, and the false promises of oppressive authorities and to make clear the human rights, the community obligations and the just relationships which the reality of the situation requires'.

Mark Steel's censored Raytheon article By Jim Jay(Jim Jay) Can be found here. The Independent decided not to print it -

Raytheon 9 Trial has finally started (Reibiliun) Here is a brief outline of the day: The trial of the Raytheon 9 finally got underway today at Laganside Court in Belfast. The day started well with about 50 people congregating outside the Courthouse. 28 of them carried placards with ...

Raytheon Nine trial set to start - The trial of the “Raytheon Nine” anti-war activists is set to start this week in Belfast, and last for up to six weeks. The nine anti-war protesters, ...See all stories on this topic

Raytheon poisons folk!!
Raytheon Class Action LawsuitIf you are one of the many residents of St. Petersburg, Florida who have been affected by the Raytheon groundwater contamination, then it is vital that you contact Joe Saunders, at Saunders -

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Human rights breached by photographing

Police 'spying' powers challenged BBC News, 1 May 2008Andrew Wood, from Oxford, claims he was harassed by the Metropolitan Police for campaigning against the arms trade. He says they breached his human rights ...

Surveillance 'breached human rights'Oxford Mail, UK - 1 May 2008

Campaign Against Arms Trade member Andrew Wood was photographed while attending the annual meeting of publisher and arms fair organiser Reed Elsevier, ...
...Mr Wood says that when he left the meeting officers from the Metropolitan Police breached the Human Rights Act by photographing, questioning and following him and six other campaigners.

And he says they committed further breaches by storing the photographs on police computers even though none of the protestors was arrested or charged with any offence.
"The behaviour of the police was oppressive, bordering on harassment," Mr Wood said.
"A police surveillance operation like the one I experienced risks a real prospect of a chilling effect on democratic participation."

Perhaps you would like to give evidence from the st athan campaign and complain about police surveillance and the right to protest and human rights and military training and schools propaganda
EHRC Human Rights Inquiry -
Y dudalen yma yn Gymraeg
Claim they are carrying out an inquiry to find out how human rights works in Britain, in line with our powers under section 16 of the Equality Act 2006. The inquiry was launched on 21 April 2008 and we expect to complete the process by December. We are now at the stage of gathering evidence for the inquiry.
RSS feed: Human Rights Inquiry
On this page
Purpose of the inquiry
Gathering evidence
Terms of reference
How will the inquiry be carried out?
Purpose of the inquiry
For the Commission, this inquiry represents the starting point for our remit on human rights. Our goals for this work are to:
promote understanding of the importance of human rights
encourage good practice in relation to human rights
promote awareness, understanding and protection of human rights, and
encourage public authorities to comply with the Human Rights Act (section 9 of the Equality Act).
We hope that by the end of the inquiry we will have:
a reliable set of findings about the state of human rights in Britain, and recommendations to move the human rights agenda forward.

Gathering evidence
We will be gathering evidence for the inquiry using a number of methods. We are calling for evidence from individuals, organisations and service providers, based on their experiences, positive and negative. We are commissioning research on specific areas that we have identified will help with the inquiry. We also expect to use other methods, like inquiry panels to hear evidence from witnesses.
Find out more about our call for evidence
Find out more about the planned research
Read our press release about the call for evidence

Back to top^
Terms of reference
When we launched the inquiry the first thing we did was to consult people about the terms of reference for this inquiry. We had a good response to the consultation and the terms of reference have now been finalised.
Read about the terms of reference, the issues raised through consultation and how we will address these issues.
Back to top^
How will the inquiry be carried out?
We have appointed Dame Nuala O'Loan to chair the inquiry. She was formerly Police Ombudsman in Northern Ireland, with experience of leading other investigations. Find out more about Dame Nuala O'Loan.
Francesca Klug is the lead commissioner representing the Commission. We are delighted to announce that Sir Bert Massie and Neil Wooding have now joined the inquiry as commissioners, to guide the inquiry process alongsite Nuala and Francesca..but can Neil be objective?

The inquiry will initially be restricted to England and Wales. Once the Scottish Commission for Human Rights is operational, we hope to extend the inquiry to Scotland.
The inquiry will investigate:public attitudes to the Human Rights Act
how the Human Rights Act is working how it is used by public authorities and other organisations where appropriate.

Monday, May 12, 2008

More Militarisation of Wales

£6bn Piranha deal will bring new jobs boost???
ic Wales - 09 May 2008
... UK Government to award a multi-billion pound armed services training facility contract at St Athan in the Vale of Glamorgan to the Metrix consortium. ...
May 9 2008 by Sion Barry, South Wales Echo
THE economy received a major boost yesterday when after the Ministry of Defence awarded a £6bn contract for a new generation of rapid response military vehicles to a South Wales-based company.

US-owned General Dynamics, which employs 1,000 in the area, mainly at Oakdale and Newbridge, was last night named as the preferred bidder for the Piranha V, which will replaced the Army’s Saxon and FV430 rapid response battlefield transportation fighting vehicles.
General Dynamics, which also works with Cardiff University on its research, is now likely to create a significant number of jobs, but it cannot yet say how many.

General Dynamics is also in the running for two more FRES contracts, both worth around £6bn, which have yet to be awarded. If secured they would be another major boost to the Welsh defence sector.

Yesterday’s announcement follows last year’s decision by the UK Government to award a multi-billion pound armed services training facility contract at St Athan in the Vale of Glamorgan to the Metrix consortium.

General Dynamics has been operational in South Wales since 2001, when it won a contract to supply the MoD with a new state of the art battlefield communication system known as Bowman.

First Minister Rhodri Morgan said: “This announcement will not only help safeguard the future of the highly skilled employees at the company's state-of-the-art facilities in Wales, but sends a clear message that Wales has the skills and the infrastructure to produce high quality and internationally competitive products.”

Is this the only answer for Wales - is the only vision we have for Wales - more military
business -

Monday, May 5, 2008

Politics of cluster bombs

The politics of cluster bombsAsia Times Online - Kowloon,Hong Kong
Guarantees of low failure rates given by big cluster munitions manufacturers, including the US's Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, Textron, Gen Corp, ...

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Cluster bombs for the British Armed Forces

May 1, 2008Use of Cluster Bombs Missiles and Bombs The Guardian has reported that cluster bombs are to remain a part of the armoury available to the British Forces. Read More...Apr 21, 2008

Netherlands Destroying CBU-87 Cluster-BombsMissiles and BombsThe Netherlands are destroying their CBU-87 cluster-bombs. Defence Minister Eimert van Middelkoop has told the Lower House that they can cause too much unacceptable human suffering. Read More...Apr 10, 2008

US accused of pressing nations over cluster bomb treatyMissiles and BombsA leading group working on behalf of disabled people accused the United States Wednesday of pressuring European and African countries not to join a new treaty next month banning cluster bombs. Read More...

wreath Laying outside The Guildhall in Derry
The bomblets from each Raytheon made CBU-87 are typically distributed over ... have called for a global moratorium on use of cluster bombs because they have - 15k -

Cluster bombs are amongst the most lethal and indiscriminate of the arms made by Raytheon. Prior to their use in Iraq, they have killed civilians from Kosovo to Afghanistan. Each Raytheon-made CBU-87 cluster bomb contains 202 individual submunitions, also called "bomblets," Each bomblet has an antitank and antipersonnel effect, as well as an incendiary capability. The bomblets from each Raytheon made CBU-87 are typically distributed over an area roughly 100 x 50 metres. Human rights groups have called for a global moratorium on use of cluster bombs because they have been shown to cause unacceptable civilian casualties both during and after conflict.

EDO MBM' s Cluster Bomb Connection Indymedia UK - In all, ALM IPT manages some 14 major weapons projects or equipment groupings and following the partnering contracts with Raytheon, MBDA, ...See all stories on this topic

Backgrounder: Cluster Bombs in Afghanistan (Human Rights Watch ...
During the first week of the campaign, it is believed that Air Force B-1 bombers dropped 50 CBU-87 cluster bombs in some five missions. CBU-87 cluster bomb - 39k -

CBU-87 Combined Effects Munitions (CEM) - Dumb Bombs
The CBU-87 is a 1000-pound, Combined Effects Munition (CEM) for attacking ... During Allied Force the US dropped about 1100 cluster bombs, and most of these - 8k -

[PDF] Top Ten Taglines
File Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat - View as HTMLThe Air Force still has CBU-87 cluster bombs containing more than 20 million ..... Raytheon plans to replace the older, unreliable BLU-97 with a -

Friday, March 28, 2008

Ireland does the right thing ..Sahme on Wales

Shame on wales for welcoming Raytheon!
Ireland does the right thing…By mary The new policy is likely to be adopted in the lead-up to a major international diplomatic conference on cluster munitions scheduled for Croke Park on May 19th-30th. The Government has taken a strong stance in favour of a total ban on ...Stop Cluster Bombs -
Same on Rhrodri Morgan
John Smith MP

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Attorney Genearal response out of date!!

At a recent meeting of the Penarth CAAT group, one of our members shared a letter from the Attorney General's office which led us to believe that CAAT's court case to have the enquiry re-opened, had failed - that the Government had won. In fact, the two judges have not yet given their decision.
The most recent CAAT email bulleting includes the following:
'1. Attorney General is out-of-date

Those of you who sent CAAT's new Control BAE postcard to the Prime
Minister, have received a response from the Attorney General's Office
which is seriously out-of-date!

The letter talks of the "recent decision" of Mr Justice Andrew
Collins that CAAT's Judicial Review of the Government's decision to
end the Serious Fraud Office investigation into the BAE Systems Al
Yamamah deal with Saudi Arabia was "unarguable". Mr Justice Collins
actually made his decision in May 2007 after considering the written
arguments. However, CAAT and the Corner House were granted permission
to proceed to a Judicial Review by Lord Justice Moses after a hearing
on 9th November 2007. He said that the issue 'cries out for a
public hearing' because it involves 'matters of concern
and public importance'. Together with Mr Justice Sullivan, Lord
Justice Moses heard the full case on 14th and 15th February 2008 and
we are currently awaiting the result.

If you have received such a letter, please write back to the Attorney
General pointing this out and calling for the investigation to be

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Call for OU to quit St Athan consortium with Raytheon

Call for OU to quit St Athan consortium
ic Wales, United Kingdom - 3 Mar 2008 Peter Collins South Wales Echo
Members of the “No to the Military Academy” campaign have staged a demonstration outside the Cardiff offices of the OU as part of the National Day of Action ...

OPPONENTS of St Athan’s defence training academy have called on the Open University in Wales to withdraw from the consortium behind the project.

The OU is a member of the Metrix consortium, which also includes multi-national training and research companies like Raytheon and Qinetiq, which made the successful bid for the multi-billion-pound academy to be built at RAF St Athan in the Vale of Glamorgan.

Members of the “No to the Military Academy” campaign have staged a demonstration outside the Cardiff offices of the OU as part of the National Day of Action for University Ethical Investment.

Anne Greagsby, spokeswoman for the campaign, said: “The proposed military training academy at St Athan will be built and run by a consortium which includes multinational arms companies. It will train not only British service personnel, but those from any regime or private military company willing to pay. We call on them the OU to withdraw.”

Rob Humphreys, director of the OU in Wales, met the campaigners outside his offices for a “useful and amicable discussion”.

He added: “As a partner in the consortium, the Open University is committed to delivering the highest quality support to this endeavour.

“The university has helped more than 100,000 services personnel and their families fulfil their potential through education. Participation in the St Athan project will help us to continue that work.”

Monday, March 3, 2008

Protest - OU - Blood on their hands

OU Protest Cardiff

Cynefin y Werin (Common Ground) is an all Wales network of organisations which promotes equality, peace, justice, human rights and co-operation between nations, peoples and communities on the basis of sustainable environmental, economic and social development.

Does your university work for/with the milititary?
The proposed military training academy at St Athan will be built and run by a consortium which includes major multinational arms companies, and will train not only British service personnel, but those from any regime or private military company that can fork out the ready cash. This consortium includes the Open University and we call on them to withdraw. there will be a Protest today at 1pm at ou office 18 custom house street Cardiff.

This is part of the
National Day of Action for University Ethical Investment - Coordinated events held at universities across the UK, in protest against university shareholding in arms companies. Anne Greagsby coordinator of the campaign against the privaitised military academy at St Athan said, "As a graduate from the opne university I am shocked that they could work with and profit from arms dealers such as Raytheon associated with cluster munitions and Serco and Qinetiq.

The Open University
"Our continued dedication to social justice and equality of opportunity is embodied in a set of commitments and principles. Through these commitments, we will strengthen our position as a university of choice."????

Military organisations - including arms companies and

the Ministry of Defence - annually sponsor hundreds of projects at UK universities.

The Study War No More report examines military involvement at 26 UK universities in order to highlight the impact military funding has on university departments. The report provides information about the funding of UK universities by military organisations, both governmental and industrial. It also intends to support students concerned about the impact their institutions have on international peace and conflict; and to encourage debate regarding the democratic deficit within academic institutions and the ends and ethics of research and research funding.

Study War No More: Military Involvement in UK Universities is a joint project between Campaign Against Arms Trade and the Fellowship of Reconciliation. The campaign website hosts full details of military involvement at 26 UK universities. You can download the Study War No More report, which exposes the ways in which the military sector is being pushed into UK universities, view in-depth data on each of the 26 universities we researched or find out more information on researching and campaigning in this area.
Read more


For more info on national campaign, contact Andy at

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Raytheon JSOWs - indiscriminate civilian death

Wesleyan needs to get out of the carnage market of "moral war"
Wesleyan Argus - Middletown, CT, USA
Raytheon, in response to the international outcry against cluster bombs, now creates “JSOWs,” fragmenting missiles designed for soft (human) and hard .....
Weapons contractors manufacture products designed for indiscriminate killing. By indiscriminate, we mean without a specific target or rational goal other than destruction at large. Raytheon, in response to the international outcry against cluster bombs, now creates “JSOWs,” fragmenting missiles designed for soft (human) and hard targets which can be programmed for “blast and fragmentation effects.”

..............any old missile will do for causing indiscriminate civilian death, such as a Raytheon missile that killed 62 civilians in a Baghdad market in September 2003. Mytheos Holt ’10 argued in a letter to the board, that Raytheon and General Dynamics also manufacture “life-saving” or non-destructive products. This utilitarian logic of weighing GPSes against a body count is ruthless, disgusting and dangerous. If a murderer volunteers at a soup kitchen, s/he is still a murderer. The logic of massive weapons supply is such that weapons linger in society for generations, fueling conflict and violence far beyond their original purpose. The more weapons are dispersed, the more demand there is for better technology, bigger guns.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Norway may ditch Israel electric Bonds

Why can we not have an ethical Wales?
Welsh politicians, even Plaid Cymru is prepared to welcome Raytheon, Serco to St Athan Wales and they have both been rejected by the Norwegian fund because of their connections to Cluster bombs and nuclear weapon. John Smith MP is one of the most obsequious lackey of the Arms Companies even prepared to use our children and schools to promote them.

Norway may ditch Israel Electric bonds
Jerusalem Post - Israel
government has banned the 2.08 trillion-krone fund from investing in companies involved in nuclear weapons or cluster munitions, and companies that it ...

The Norwegian sovereign wealth fund's ethical council is considering whether to recommend the fund sell its 107 million kroner ($20 million) of bonds in Israel Electric Corp. because of an alleged participation in a blockade of the Gaza Strip.

Norwegian Foreign Minister Kristin Halvorsten wants an ethics council to investigate Israel Electric over its role in cutting back electricity supplies to Gazans.

"Information that the Israeli government is using this company to cut electricity supplies to Gaza, and thereby worsening the situation for civilians there, has made Finance Minister Kristin Halvorsen ask the ethics council to investigate the company," ministry spokeswoman Kaja Haldorsen said by e-mail Thursday. Israel Electric wasn't immediately available for comment.

The government has banned the 2.08 trillion-krone fund from investing in companies involved in nuclear weapons or cluster munitions, and companies that it says are guilty of human rights or environmental abuses. An ethics council investigates companies alleged to be breaking the investment guidelines.

Israel Electric is a state-owned monopoly power supplier.

Norway, the world's fifth-largest exporter of crude oil, places most of its petroleum revenue in the fund. The pension plan is the world's second-largest so-called sovereign wealth fund after the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority. It is forecast to double in size to more than 4 trillion kroner by 2014.

The Church of Norway asked the government in January 2006 to review its investments and possibly withdraw from companies that "are active in the construction of the wall and Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank."

The ethics council concluded that there were no grounds for excluding companies active in Israel "or in areas under Israeli occupation," Finance Ministry senior advisor Aslak Skancke wrote at the time. "However, the possibility is not ruled out that information may be revealed in the future leading to closer examination and possible recommendations."

Companies that have been dropped previously by the fund include Poongsan Corp., Lockheed Martin Corp, Raytheon Co., European Aeronautic Defence and Space Co. and Wal-Mart Stores Inc., according to the Finance Ministry.

The Norwegian fund was established 11 years ago and is one of the world's oldest sovereign wealth funds. Yngve Slyngstad took over as head last month, succeeding Knut Kjaer, who managed the fund since its inception.

Tal Barak in Tel Aviv contributed to this report.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

National Day of Action for Ethical Investment at Universities

National Day of Action for Ethical Investment at Universities

Wednesday 27th February
Coordinated actions will take place throughout the day at
universities across the UK. Students will be dressing up as arms
dealers and selling (fake!) university-branded guns to raise
awareness about their Universities' shareholdings in arms companies.

Universities currently taking part include University College London
(UCL), Warwick, Manchester and Newcastle.

Students at all universities are welcome to participate. It just
needs a small group (5+) to set aside an hour or so on the day for
the action and alert the local student press.

There is still time to plan an action for the day! By forming a
united front, students can show they no longer tolerate their
universities' arms trade investments and demand change!

For further information, please contact Andy on
This event is being coordinated with People and Planet.


Sunday, February 17, 2008

Saudi Arabia's rulers threatened to make it easier for terrorists to attack London

Spectre of 'another 7/7' led Blair to block bribes inquiry, high court told --BAE: secret papers reveal threats from Saudi prince 15 Feb 2008 Saudi Arabia's rulers threatened to make it easier for terrorists to attack London, unless corruption investigations into their arms deals were halted, according to court documents revealed yesterday. Previously secret files describe how investigators were told they faced "another 7/7" and the loss of "British lives on British streets" if they pressed on with their inquiries and the Saudis carried out their threat to cut off intelligence.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Raytheon & cluster bomb in the news from Gwynedd to New Zealand

North Wales pension funds linked to weapons trade Daily Post - Llandudno Junction,UK Examples will be given from the campaign against the planned St Athan Military Academy in south Wales, and to persuade Gwynedd council to dis-invest from ...See all stories on this topic

Greens call on Super to quit funding cluster-bomb makers
New Zealand Herald - New Zealand
... from $15.8 million to $21.9 million and Raytheon from $1.5 million to $2.3 million. He said both were involved in the manufacture of cluster bombs. ...

Time to stop loving the money from the bomb - New Zealand
"It is blatant hypocrisy for the New Zealand Government on the one hand to take dividends from the manufacture of cluster bombs while on the other hand to ...
See all stories on this topic

The Frog Roars By Bomber(Bomber) Co-leader Russel Norman said the fund had increased its investments in Lockheed from $15.8 million to $21.9 million and Raytheon from $1.5 million to $2.3 million. He said both were involved in the manufacture of cluster bombs. ...

BAE enquiry

There was an interesting piece on Newsnight yesterday about the BAE inquiry which you may like to watch. it is available on the web at
look under 'Watch latest programme' in the upper right of the page ("Court to study BAE decision"). enjoy!