Arms

Guilty as charged

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Campaigners have won a landmark legal case against the government over the halting of an investigation into allegedly corrupt arms deals with Saudi Arabia.

Lord Justice Moses and Mr Justice Sullivan ruled in the High Court on 10 April that Tony Blair's government had acted unlawfully when they pressurised the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) to abandon the inquiry. The judges described the situation as a "successful attempt by a foreign government to pervert the course of justice in the United Kingdom".

Dirty deals, bribes - welcome to the world of the arms trade

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Public opposition to the arms trade has risen sharply in Britain, largely in response to a never-ending stream of scandals surrounding BAE Systems.

The scandals exposed in recent weeks are the latest in a saga that has run for several years. Britain is the world's second biggest arms exporter and BAE is its largest arms company. BAE has always been unpopular, but criticism reached boiling point at the end of 2006.

DIY Arms Sales

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The British-backed European Union decision to lift the arms embargo on China is not just about military equipment.

Lifting the ban on weapons exports is a goodwill gesture to China's authoritarian government from a Europe that wants more business with the east.

A Fistful of Dollars

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The deadly arms trade between Britain, the US and Israel

Colin Powell effectively went on his 'peace mission' to Israel with a suitcase of guns. Every US call for Israeli restraint is matched by millions of dollars in military aid and huge consignments of US arms. It's not the Jewish-US lobby driving this support for Israel, but those old Texas issues of guns and oil. A well armed Israel can better keep the 'balance of power' in the Middle East, ensuring cheap flowing oil. The arms sales keep up the share prices of Lockheed, Raytheon, Boeing and Textron. Britain hangs on to the coat tails of US policy and also arms to Israel.

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