CAMPAIGNERS accused the government yesterday of profiting from the latest slaughter in Gaza by selling British weapons to Israel in multimillion-pound arms deals.
Flogging arms and components to Israel has been regarded as a reliable cash cow by British officials for a long time, said Campaign Against Arms Trade (CAAT).
Data collected by the campaign group show that Britain pockets about £12.5 million a year from the deals with Israel.
“Arms deals don’t just give Israel military support, they also indicate a strong political support,” CAAT spokesman Andrew Smith told the Morning Star.
During Israel’s Operation Cast Lead bloodbath in late 2008, then foreign secretary David Miliband suggested that armament supplied by Britain was “almost certainly” used by the Israeli Defence Forces (IDF).
And the relationship works both ways. Over the years British governments have purchased millions of pounds worth of military supplies from Israel, which is the world’s leading exporter of drones.
Israeli arms dealer Elbit – which pitches its wares as “battle-tested” – is currently working with Thales UK after being awarded a drone manufacturing contract by the Ministry of Defence in 2005.
Israeli drone production pulls in about £205m a year.