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A new report examines the role of the world’s largest arms companies in shaping and profiting from the militarisation of the USA's borders. "More Than a Wall" explores how corporations and their government allies have formed powerful border–industrial complex that is a major impediment to a humane response to migration.

In 1967, Los Angeles Police Department Inspector Daryl Gates came up with the concept of SWAT based on his experience policing Black uprisings such as the Watts Riots. The War on Drugs saw higher rates of lethal force as the government transferred military equipment to police departments—a transfer that was motivated out of the government’s fear of Black liberation and antiwar movements.

Pedro Rios

On May 28, 2015, in San Diego, California, hundreds gathered for an evening rally and march to commemorate the National Day of Action to Stop Border Brutality. The San Diego activity was part of a coordinated set of non-violent actions where organizations at nine cities across the United States convened various events to raise their voices against increased impunity by border agents who have been implicated in at least 39 deaths since 2010. Led by the Southern Border Communities Coalition, comprised of over 65 organizations working along the US-Mexico border, the coordinated rallies, marches, and film screenings also highlighted the 5th year anniversary of the death of Anastasio Hernandez Rojas, a father of five who in 2010 was tortured to death by over a dozen border agents at the San Ysidro Port-of-Entry in San Diego.

Tim Wright

Each year, the nine nuclear-armed nations spend a combined total of more than US$100 billion on their nuclear forces – assembling new warheads, modernizing old ones, and building ballistic missiles, bombers and submarines to deliver them. Much of this work is carried out by private corporations, which are financed by a vast web of financial institutions around the world.

“What would you do if someone came to your door with a cup in hand asking for a contribution to help buy guns to kill a group of people they didn't like?”
— Wally Nelson

Wally Nelson was a resister during World War II, one of many U.S. pacifists who not only refused to kill but didn’t want to pay for it either. In 1942, Ernest Bromley refused to buy a “defense tax stamp” for his car because the money went to the war, and the U.S. government took him to court. He spent 60 days in jail for refusing $7.09 for stamps and a $25 fine imposed by the court.

Each fall, in early October, the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space holds Keep Space for Peace Week. The purpose of the event is to increase global consciousness about the need to prevent the arms race from moving into space.

Indian acquisitions of military hardware are the hot topic in the global armaments bazaar. India is expected to spend around $30 billion on arms imports over the next few years. India is perhaps the world’s largest importer of armaments with annual expenditure of around $6 billion on this count, a sizeable proportion of India’s defence budget of $28 billion for 2009-10.

From May 12th to 14th, Brussels Expo hosted the ITEC exhibition (International Training and Education Conference) the annual top event for companies in the military training and simulation business. On the first day of the event, Vredesactie activists went in undercover and revealed controversial links. On May 13th, a delegation of politicians visited ITEC to make clear that an event like this is not welcome.


Booming business

The verdict will be slow in coming. There are several things to be optimistic, shall we say, “hopeful,” about when it comes to confronting the corruption, fraud, waste, and deceit of war profiteers – and, not surprisingly, there are many reasons to doubt that we’ll see any real change after all. I am genuinely torn as to what to expect. If Obama follows through on his positive programs, life will be much more difficult for military contractors.

From the 31 of March to the 4 of April in Santiago, Chile , there was an arms fair: FIDAE, is a fair that focuses on the aerospace defence

area. FIDAE also welcomes civilian exhibitors but essentially the fair has a military focus. This fair is one of the biggest and most important of its kind in Latin America and is a mayor event for the arms traders to make business in the region. This year's fair hosted

the 11th edition of the meeting of Logistic Commanders of the Air Forces of South America.

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