jump to example.com

Textron plays leading role in Middle East carnage

newspaper | @cnels43 | Support this author on Patreon

Last week, former NSA and CIA Director Michael Hayden told MSNBC’s Morning Joe panel that Americans “are not tolerant enough of collateral damage.” Hayden feels the American War Machine is too constrained by the conscience of ordinary Americans. His disgusting statement apparently does not apply to the Providence, Rhode Island-based Textron Corporation, who continue to manufacture and sell cluster munitions to other governments, who in turn use them indiscriminately in places like Yemen, Ukraine, Syria, and Sudan, to name a few.

Despite the American government’s claims that they no longer use cluster bombs, hard evidence suggests otherwise. Yemeni journalist Haider Shaye found “irrefutable proof” that a 2009 missile strike in Yemen was conducted by Americans. The American strike came shortly after Barack Obama was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. It killed 35 Yemeni women and children, and left behind at least one unexploded cluster bomb. Not long after Shaye reported on his findings, he was jailed by the Yemeni puppet regime and held past his anticipated release date at Barack Obama’s direct behest.

Even if the American military’s use of cluster bombs had gone undiscovered by Shaye, their complicity in other governments’ use of cluster bombs indicts them all the same. The Pentagon spoon-feeds overseas arms contracts to firms like Textron, who are equally culpable in the death and destruction.

When cluster bombs are dropped, they open mid-air, releasing many hundreds of smaller bombs which blanket large swaths of targeted territories. Because many of these “submunitions” do not detonate even after landing, they remain a danger to local populations where children often pick them up and farmers step on them or drive over them. Sometimes, the clusters lie dormant for years, even decades, before being stumbled upon by unsuspecting victims who have limbs blown off or are seriously crippled or disfigured. That is, assuming they are lucky enough to survive the blasts at all.

Even with the well-known minefield that is now Laos, where locals still fall victim to cluster bombs some forty years after America’s Vietnam War, Textron seems unable to pass up the lucrative arms deals. One of Textron’s justifications for the continued production and sale of cluster bombs is that their new and improved technology has become so refined that only a mere one percent or less of all cluster bombs deployed will remain unexploded. This “one percent rule” is in keeping with Pentagon requirements on cluster munition production, under which Textron appears to take moral cover.

Textron’s Vice President of Business Development Mark Rafferty called the advances in cluster bomb technology “extremely sophisticated” and added, “knowing that we are in no way, shape or form contributing to [civilian suffering] is really a very satisfying place to be.” Despite these protestations, it’s hard to imagine Rafferty would volunteer his own children to play minesweeper in places like Yemen, where the local population aren’t exactly reassured by Textron’s one-percent-unexploded estimate.

The hypocrisy of the American government on this issue is thick enough to cut with a knife. In 2011, Hilary Clinton admonished the now-deposed Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi for his use of cluster bombs while her own soldiers covertly dropped them in the Middle East. It was one of the many human rights violations that Clinton cited as support for her tunnel-brained rampage in Libya. Clinton also failed to mention that the United States, like Libya, is one of the few countries to refuse to sign onto the 2008 Convention on Cluster Munitions.

On April 18, 2016 the Rhode Island Antiwar Coalition will stage a 4:30 PM protest outside of Textron’s world headquarters in downtown Providence. While the profits are likely too good for Textron to pay any regard to the protesters, perhaps a hit to their stock price will help them see more clearly the carnage they cause beyond America’s borders. If investors are comfortable continuing to finance Textron’s deadly operations, they should be aware that they are inviting blowback against themselves and other innocent Americans.

   
Discussion
 
Highlights

Street Knowledge with Chris Graham: Libertarian gubernatorial nominee Cliff Hyra

Chris Graham interviews Libertarian gubernatorial nominee Cliff Hyra.

Another new poll gives Northam big lead in Virginia governor race

One Virginia governor race poll released yesterday had Democrat Ralph Northam and Republican Ed Gillespie tied.

Poll: Trump unpopular in Virginia

President Donald Trump is well under water among Virginia voters, according to new poll results released by the University of Mary Washington.

The Petty Hearts bring Tom Petty tribute to Wayne Theatre on Sept. 22

Tom Petty tribute band The Petty Hearts are coming to the Wayne Theatre on Friday, Sept. 22.

Virginia Chili, Blues n' Brews Festival set for Saturday

The Virginia Chili, Blues n' Brews Festival will celebrate its 10th anniversary on Saturday in Downtown Waynesboro.

Events Calendar

Upcoming events in the Shenandoah Valley, Central Virginia and statewide from the Augusta Free Press Events Calendar. Don't see your event listed? Email augustafreepress2@gmail.com.

UVA alum Chris Long to donate first six NFL game checks to fund scholarships

The Chris Long Foundation announced today that Philadelphia Eagles defensive end Chris Long will donate his first six game checks of the 2017 NFL season to fund two scholarships in his hometown of Charlottesville.

Game Preview: VMI, Chattanooga look to get back on track on Saturday

VMI knew the 2017 football season was going to be a rebuilding year. Chattanooga, coming off a playoff appearance in 2016, had its usual high expectations.

Game Preview: UVA has a chance at Boise State

Vegas and the ESPN Power Index don’t give UVA much of a chance to win at Boise State on Friday night.

Street Knowledge with Chris Graham: First look at UVA-Boise State

Chris Graham and Scott German take a first look at the UVA-Boise State game set for Friday night.

Web Design, Marketing

Augusta Free Press LLC provides clients in the Shenandoah Valley and Central Virginia and beyond with marketing and PR solutions including web design, TV/radio, social media and overall marketing campaign design and implementation.

   
Recent Posts
   
Your One-Stop Media Shop
Augusta Free Press LLC provides clients in the Shenandoah Valley and Central Virginia and beyond with marketing and PR solutions including web design, magazine/brochure, TV/radio, social media and overall marketing campaign design and implementation.
  • Web Design

    You want a new website, but don’t have the first clue as to how to build one. That’s our job. We take care of all facets of web design – visual design, layout design and content development. Get your business online for as little as $1,299.
    Learn more about AFP Web Design services.
  • Graphic Design

    The staff at Augusta Free Press Publishing has been recognized by the Virginia Press Association for excellence in layout and design. Whether you need a fresh business card design, rack card, ad, flyer or full magazine design, we can help with all your graphic-design needs.
    Learn more about AFP Graphic Design services.
  • Marketing

    Augusta Free Press manages advertising campaigns for small- and medium-sized businesses across Virginia. You don’t need to hire a full-time marketing coordinator. Bring the experience of the Augusta Free Press team to work for you – for a fraction of the cost.
    Learn more about AFP Marketing services.