How to buy friends and make them hate you

The United States, protector of the civilised world:

The Bush administration is pushing through a broad array of foreign weapons deals as it seeks to rearm Iraq, Afghanistan, contain North Korea and Iran, and solidify ties with onetime Russian allies. and

From tanks, helicopters and fighter jets to missiles, remotely piloted aircraft and even warships, the Department of Defense has agreed so far this fiscal year to sell or transfer more than $32 billion in weapons and other military equipment to foreign governments, compared with $12 billion in 2005.

The trend, which started in 2006, is most pronounced in the Middle East, but it reaches into northern Africa, Asia, Latin America, Europe and even Canada, through dozens of deals that senior Bush administration officials say they are confident will both tighten military alliances and combat terrorism.

“This is not about being gunrunners,” said Bruce S. Lemkin, the Air Force deputy under secretary who is helping to coordinate many of the biggest sales. “This is about building a more secure world.”

The kind of “secure world” that suspects Washington or Israel may have been behind 9/11 and an Afghani population that deeply resents being killed by NATO in the name of “freedom.”

Text and images ©2024 Antony Loewenstein. All rights reserved.

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