War Profiteers News

An activist in Seoul holds a "shame on you" banner during the ADEX arms fair
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Who arms Myanmar, Marvel Comics and EU militarisation

Around the world, companies are profiting from war and violence - but they are also, always, facing resistance. In this edition of War Profiteers News, we cover the recent sponsorship deal between Marvel Comics and Northrop Grumman, the world's fifth biggest arms manufacturer, protests against arms fairs in South Korea and New Zealand, and various reports on the actions of war profiteers in Europe, the USA, and Myanmar.

The plan was to release a special series featuring Northrop Grumman-branded characters working alongside characters from the Avengers. The new comic series would be released at the New York Comic Convention the next day, but following a backlash on twitter from fans, the company quickly pulled out of the scheduled release.

October 7th marked sixteen years since the start of the US War in Afghanistan – America’s longest war. In an effort to justify the continued and expanded presence of US troops in the country, President Trump is seeking a plan to have US companies extract minerals from resource-rich Afghanistan.

Using leaked documents, the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP) has disclosed details of an extensive “weapons laundering scheme” involving Ukrainian companies and authorities.

In 2016 the European Union took the unprecedented step of setting up a military research programme worth 90 million euros, the so-called Preparatory Action on Defence Research (PADR).

Who arms Myanmar?

A protest march in Bangladesh against the violence against the Rohingya community

Since 25th August, over half a million members of Myanmar's Rohyinga community have been driven out from the north Rakhine state, with security forces torching homes, crops and villages in so called “clearance operations” the UN high commissioner for Human Rights has described as “a textbook example of ethnic cleansing.”

Aimpoint is a Swedish company, manufacturing red-dot magnifying optic sights for a wide range of military, law enforcement, and commercial hunting weapons. Aimpoint was formed in 1974 and is based in Malmo, Sweden. Militaries all over the world, including the US military and NATO member countries use the company’s sights, and they are available from suppliers on every continent.

In October, groups in New Zealand and South Korea have taken direct action against arms fairs and weapons expos taking place in their Auckland and Seoul.