Disgrace to Trade Unionism.

I suppose it should come as no great surprise to read that Bertie Hamilton, the national officer of the Unite/Amicus trade union, welcomes the proposed sale of 72 warplanes to the Saudi Arabian government as “excellent news for the aerospace industry and the wider UK economy“.  This lack of surprise though, makes Comrade Hamilton’s words no less disgusting.   

Human rights under the dictatorial Saudi monarchy range from “poor” to “non-existent”.  It is a country which engages in torture and public executions, and which oppresses women and homosexuals.   According to Amnesty International ”There are no trade union rights in Saudi Arabia.  Trade unions and strikes are banned. Collective bargaining is forbidden and anyone trying to organise can end up being sacked or jailed and in the case of foreign workers thrown out of the country.“ 

One has to wonder what comrade Hamilton thinks this illiberal, regressive and anti-trade unionist regime in Saudi Arabia is going to do with £4.43 billion of lethal military hardware?   Start a socialist revolution?

This deal is part of a ”new defence co-operation programme” called Project Salam.  A UK Ministry of Defence spokesman was quoted as saying that “the [UK and Saudi] governments share key objectives on national security and actions to combat terrorism“.    Oh really??    No doubt Unite/Amicus shares these “key objectives”, whatever the hell they are. 

Human Rights activists have suggested that the USA, the United Kingdom and many Western European countries have been hypocritical due to their strong condemnation of the human rights record of Saddam Hussein, but their complete silence regarding the  human rights record in Saudi Arabia.  Human rights activists have noted that many Western governments have oil interests in Saudi Arabia and have a vested interest in protecting the status quo in Saudi Arabia because the Saudi Royal family has been so favorable to the West regarding the supply of oil .”  Wiki

So this is what our trade unions have come to,  handmaidens to capitalist arms dealers and apologists for imperialist war-mongers in collusion with  repressive governments that oppress their own populations.   It’s enough to make you weep.  

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~ by blacksheepdiarist on September 19, 2007.

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