Next Time Someone Says Nothing Is Made in the USA Anymore, Show Them This

Who says nothing is made in the USA anymore?

Certainly not the well-heeled denizens of the State Department’s diplomatic
corps. And they should know. That’s because they’re stationed on the frontlines
of the ongoing battle to preserve Uncle Sam’s dominant market share of the global
weapons trade. Luckily for the Military-Industrial Complex, it turns out that
“Made In the USA” inspires a lot of brand loyalty, even if actual loyalty
is often a harder sell (paging Saudi
). To wit, not only was America the world’s leading arms dealer in
2014 with $36.2
in sales, but it topped that 35% surge in sales over 2013 with yet
another profitable spike to $46.6
in 2015.

As Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) determined in its
recent report
on the global arms trade, the United States maintains a commanding “33% share
of total arms exports” and is the world’s top seller for five years running.
And its customer base includes “at least” 96 countries, which is nearly
half of the world’s nations
. A robust 40%
of those exports
end up in the Middle East. Perhaps that’s why the State
Department is so darn bullish on the prospects of Uncle Sam’s booming business
of selling things that go “boom!”

That’s the takeaway from a recent
in Defense News
highlighting the marketing push by “Commercial Officers” stationed at the US
embassy in Jordan. They worked the crowd at the kingdom’s eleventh bi-annual
Special Operations Forces Exhibition and Conference
(SOFEX). Like many of the nearly 100
military-themed “trade shows”
held around the world this year alone,
SOFEX offered the profiteers of doom an opportunity to display their merchandise
and to cut deals with bellicose browsers ready to pull the trigger on a deadly
impulse buy. Some of the bigger, “glitzy
trade shows – like the International Defence
Exposition and Conference
(IDEX) held yearly in Abu Dhabi – are full-on
one-stop-shopping destinations for the up-and-coming military power on the move,
the newly-minted pro-Western junta eager to armor-up, and the forward-thinking
” looking for the latest in “kinetic

If nothing else, trade shows offer defense contractors a chance to give out
” to potential future customers who might be swayed to double-back
by a branded
camouflage carryall
or a Digi
Camo Military Bert Stress Reliever
. No doubt it’s a tedious affair, but
the presenters toiling behind the displays are not alone on the battlefield
of commerce. That certainly was the case at SOFEX, where the U.S.
deployed Senior Commercial Officer Geoffrey Bogart and Regional
Safety and Security chief Cherine Maher to act as sale-force multipliers for

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