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Dutch transit of Czech ammo to Guatemala

Dutch transit of Czech ammo to Guatemala; a country sliding “towards becoming a dictatorial state” In the largest harbour outside Asia, that of Rotterdam, remarkable things happen. Sometimes questions must be asked, like in the case of a large shipment of bullets to Guatemala, a country with a horrible past which is still a chilling part of the present. Guatemala was the stage of a... read more >

Crazy catalyst for European defence spending

“I am certain that, at some time in the future, President Xi and I, together with President Putin of Russia, will start talking about a meaningful halt to what has become a major and uncontrollable Arms Race. The U.S. spent 716 Billion Dollars this year. Crazy!” Tweet Donald Trump 3 Dec 2018 This Trump Tweet was sent in the heat of the debate on enlarging the US defense budgets.... read more >

Coocking the budget: the drive for higher defence expenditures

The presumed need for higher military budgets is a major argument on which defence industries flourish. Why are alarm bells on the military budgets tolled so loud? It is hard to miss that the West is the dominant party in military expenditure. It spends more than the rest of the world together. The expenditures of Russia collapsed after the Cold War. Because the category 'Rest of the world... read more >

Reapers, Dutch air force and Fokker

The Dutch air force is in the process of acquiring four General Atomics MQ-9 Reaper drones with ground stations at a cost of € 187 million. Anticipated deployment includes gathering intelligence during interventions/humanitarian operations and the support of civilian authorities. Dutch GKN Fokker is rewarded for the Dutch acquisition with participation in the production of the Reapers.... read more >

Netherland is Pakistan's 3rd source of arms

Dutch arms exports in 2017 are projected as dots on a map published online by Stop Wapenhandel (Stop Arms Trade) from the Netherlands. Eye catching for Asia is the big dot covering Pakistan. Karachi was a major client for Dutch arms in 2017. Which is peculiar for several reasons: First because the Dutch have overall a restrictive arms export policy. And second because the South Asian country is... read more >

Fokker alive and kicking; components for Yemen

Late august 2018 military helicopter company NHIndustries concluded a deal with Qatar to sell 28 helicopters. The France-based company is jointly owned by Airbus, Leonardo Helicopters and Fokker Aerostructures. Fokker produces the landing gear for the NH-90 helicopters. The deal with Qatar is only a tip of the iceberg of the involvement of the Fokker company in the Middle East. Fokker delivers... read more >

Hidden parts in Dutch arms export

During a visit of the Dutch prime minister to Washington, the Netherlands and the United States reinforced their ties on military affairs on issues like cooperation on operations, equipment and acquisitions. The US is already the biggest customer of the Dutch arms industry, followed by EU/NATO+ and Germany. Cooperation agreements play a large role in this trade connection. Great global powers... read more >

Control on second hand arms exports

Surplus arms will come to the market when armed forces are shrinking because of budget limitations or are restructuring due to major strategic changes. This happened for example in the nineties after the Cold War, when NATO armies shifted their focus towards intervention forces. It is also happening now; Cold War 2.0 comes with new generations of ships, vehicles and fighter planes making arms... read more >

Dutch arms exports and SIPRI ranking

In the latest annual report Trends in international arms transfers by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) The Netherlands entered the top-10 of Global arms exporters. The main message of the report, covering 2013-2017, is that global arms exports grew 10 per cent in comparison with 2008–2012. In the top 10 of largest arms exporters only two countries had a shrinking... read more >

F-35, Turkey and the EU Common Position

Although under the autocratic regime of president Erdogan, Turkey expected to receive its F-35 fighter aircraft. According to plan the first plan would be delivered June 21 and stationed in September 2019 in Turkey's Malatya province which borders Iran, Iraq and Syria. But remarkably the program is now under fire in the US. The detention of the American pastor Andrew Craig Brunson, the role... read more >

A Common Position is not a common policy

This year the EU Common Position on the export of military goods and technology is due for review. Will the text be improved? Will there be criteria added, for example on corruption? Will vague notions such as 'serious' human rights violation be replaced by something more measurable? So far most EU Member States have not shown much interest in a Common Position review. They seem happy... read more >

Submarines for swap

April 2018 the US promised Tapei technology to be used for a domestic Taiwanese submarine program. Only technology, because the largest superpower of this era has no capacity for building diesel submarines; it sails only subs with nuclear engines. The major builders and exporters of non-nuclear submarines are located in Europe. Nine nations have diesel submarine building capabilities, all EU/NATO... read more >

European naval vessels for sale

According to a study written for the European Commission, the average share of Europe’s naval industry is more than 60 percent of the global export market over the period 2005-2014. The European naval industry takes 25-30 percent of the total production value of the whole maritime sector. Only the US with 60 percent has a higher percentage (but the US has a very small merchant marine... read more >

Dual use technology for China

In January 2018 17 percent of Dutch dual-use exports went to China. Is this an issue for arms control activists? In February Chinese president Xi Jiping aimed for a presidency without end. At the same time it was rumoured that a Chinese fleet sailed into the Indian Ocean as a show of military force towards India. The largest vessels mentioned, so-called 52C destroyers, are capable of firing... read more >

Frontex hires notorious Israeli drones for border security trials

In the course of this year Frontex, the EU border guard agency, will test two military UAVs (drones) for maritime border surveillance in the Mediterranean Sea: the Heron from Israeli Aerospace Industries (IAI) and the Falco from Italian arms giant Leonardo (formerly Finmeccanica). Heron drones have a notorious history of use against the Palestinians, adding more objections to their already... read more >

EU and military and security industry meet on future of EUROSUR

On 6 and 7 February EU and member states' officials meet up with military and security companies for the 'Industry Day on Border Surveillance and Integrated Border Management' in Brussels. The aim of the day is to discuss the future development of EUROSUR, the EU border monitoring and surveillance system. This shows again the close connections between the EU and the European military... read more >

Shoot! on Yemen

The Saudi's lost over 20 Abraham tanks during the war in Yemen. A flow of supplemental tanks goes from the US to the Arabian peninsular and deployment of them in the Yemen war continues, reports and video's show. February last year the Pentagon issued a contract for the modification of systems and technical support for the Abrams and its derivatives of Australia, UAE and Saudi Arabia.... read more >

F-35 arms trade by stealth

It is expected the European Parliament will adopt a resolution on Thursday November 30, on on the situation in Yemen. A concept version states: “[The European Parliament] strongly criticises the intensive arms trade of Member States with various countries in the region, as in the cases of the UK, Spain, France and Germany; calls for an immediate suspension of arms transfers and military... read more >