Why the UK should continue selling arms to Saudi Arabia

Watch
This discussion is closed.
username2766878
Badges: 11
Rep:
?
#1
Report Thread starter 3 years ago
#1
1) Because they'll buy it elsewhere. Believe it or not, the UK's not the only arms dealer on the planet. The supply we withdraw will be happily provided by the US, France, Germany or maybe even Russia. What have we actually achieved?

2) Because it's bad for Britain. Like it or not, arms sales make an important contribution to our economy. It supports jobs and investment and it's a credit to our balance of payments. Saudi Arabia happens to be one of our biggest customers. We'll be shooting ourselves in the foot.

3) Because it's impractical virtue signalling. If you're going to make a moral case against arms sales, then you can pretty much make a moral case with having diplomatic or business relations with any despotic regime ever. Shall we suspend cheap Chinese imports to criticise China's human rights violations? Shall we freeze in the winter because we won't buy Russian gas because we're angry at how Putin's a quasi dictator? If your approach is moral and not practical, where do you draw the line?

4) Because it's our job to insulate ourselves from Islamist ideology, not Saudi Arabia's job to not promote it. Whilst it would obviously help if the Saudis didn't pump billions into promoting ultra orthodox Islamist ideology which encourages people to join ISIS and launch terror attacks and as despicable as the ideology is, we have to take responsibility to ensure that communities in our country don't fall victim to it. Technically what the Saudi State is doing with its oil money in relation to pumping Islamist ideology is legitimate and doesn't violate any laws. Our politicians should have the cahonas to ban institutions accepting Saudi money promoting Wahhabism and to be more assertive with our anti-Jihadist narrative. We should look there before we damage our own industry in a futile attempt to change the behavioir of a state by foregoing billions in revenue.

Foreign policy's not a game of moralisms. Our approach to the Saudis has to be practical and effective. Rather than not selling them arms, we shouldn't be supporting regime change in Syria and aligning ourselves with them and nor should we be allowing their money to have such a disproportionate influence in Muslim religious institutions in this country. But not selling arms to them changes nothing, it just makes us poorer.
1
Stalin
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#2
Report 3 years ago
#2
(Original post by Sycatonne23)
1) Because they'll buy it elsewhere. Believe it or not, the UK's not the only arms dealer on the planet. The supply we withdraw will be happily provided by the US, France, Germany or maybe even Russia. What have we actually achieved?

2) Because it's bad for Britain. Like it or not, arms sales make an important contribution to our economy. It supports jobs and investment and it's a credit to our balance of payments. Saudi Arabia happens to be one of our biggest customers. We'll be shooting ourselves in the foot.

3) Because it's impractical virtue signalling. If you're going to make a moral case against arms sales, then you can pretty much make a moral case with having diplomatic or business relations with any despotic regime ever. Shall we suspend cheap Chinese imports to criticise China's human rights violations? Shall we freeze in the winter because we won't buy Russian gas because we're angry at how Putin's a quasi dictator? If your approach is moral and not practical, where do you draw the line?

4) Because it's our job to insulate ourselves from Islamist ideology, not Saudi Arabia's job to not promote it. Whilst it would obviously help if the Saudis didn't pump billions into promoting ultra orthodox Islamist ideology which encourages people to join ISIS and launch terror attacks and as despicable as the ideology is, we have to take responsibility to ensure that communities in our country don't fall victim to it. Technically what the Saudi State is doing with its oil money in relation to pumping Islamist ideology is legitimate and doesn't violate any laws. Our politicians should have the cahonas to ban institutions accepting Saudi money promoting Wahhabism and to be more assertive with our anti-Jihadist narrative. We should look there before we damage our own industry in a futile attempt to change the behavioir of a state by foregoing billions in revenue.

Foreign policy's not a game of moralisms. Our approach to the Saudis has to be practical and effective. Rather than not selling them arms, we shouldn't be supporting regime change in Syria and aligning ourselves with them and nor should we be allowing their money to have such a disproportionate influence in Muslim religious institutions in this country. But not selling arms to them changes nothing, it just makes us poorer.
Why stop at Saudi Arabia?

Iran's military is ripe for the picking: most of its equipment is Cold War era junk that can and will be modernised. If the UK does not act, Chinese and Russian defence contractors will get there first, preventing BAE Systems from expanding its operations, which would have meant more jobs in the UK.

In addition, the British government does not go far enough to promote British-made small arms around the world. When was the last time you saw members of al-Qaeda, ISIS, Boko Haram, al-Shabaab, Mexican drug cartels, the IRA, the LRA, Somali pirates, etc with something other than a Soviet-made AK-47 in their hands? The government could sell any remaining L1A1 rifles it has in its stockpile, as well as every single SA80, which it could replace with a new, more modern rifle that reflects the 21st century. It could even test its latest missiles on the aforementioned groups immediately after a transaction - two birds with one stone; although, if that were the case, I fear that the groups would more than likely stop doing business with the government.
1
RF_PineMarten
Badges: 18
Rep:
?
#3
Report 3 years ago
#3
(Original post by Sycatonne23)

4) Because it's our job to insulate ourselves from Islamist ideology, not Saudi Arabia's job to not promote it. Whilst it would obviously help if the Saudis didn't pump billions into promoting ultra orthodox Islamist ideology which encourages people to join ISIS and launch terror attacks and as despicable as the ideology is, we have to take responsibility to ensure that communities in our country don't fall victim to it. Technically what the Saudi State is doing with its oil money in relation to pumping Islamist ideology is legitimate and doesn't violate any laws. Our politicians should have the cahonas to ban institutions accepting Saudi money promoting Wahhabism and to be more assertive with our anti-Jihadist narrative. We should look there before we damage our own industry in a futile attempt to change the behavioir of a state by foregoing billions in revenue.

Foreign policy's not a game of moralisms. Our approach to the Saudis has to be practical and effective. Rather than not selling them arms, we shouldn't be supporting regime change in Syria and aligning ourselves with them and nor should we be allowing their money to have such a disproportionate influence in Muslim religious institutions in this country. But not selling arms to them changes nothing, it just makes us poorer.
"Ok then, the Saudis fund vile Islamist groups in Syria, treat women as property, execute rape victims for adultery and execute teenagers for taking part in protests, but what about those poor impoverished British arms dealers?"

Money does not justify selling weapons to Islamist tyrants. That is a morally repugnant attitude to have.

The fact that other countries also have poor human rights records is not an excuse to continue to sell weapons to this particular brutal Islamist theocracy. Pulling support for one despot is better than not pulling it from any.

Saudi Arabia's promotion of wahhabist ideology is legal, but that means absolutely nothing. That's a brilliant example of how something being technically legal does not make it morally right.
1
username2053059
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#4
Report 3 years ago
#4
(Original post by RF_PineMarten)
"Ok then, the Saudis fund vile Islamist groups in Syria, treat women as property, execute rape victims for adultery and execute teenagers for taking part in protests, but what about those poor impoverished British arms dealers?"

Money does not justify selling weapons to Islamist tyrants. That is a morally repugnant attitude to have.

The fact that other countries also have poor human rights records is not an excuse to continue to sell weapons to this particular brutal Islamist theocracy. Pulling support for one despot is better than not pulling it from any.

Saudi Arabia's promotion of wahhabist ideology is legal, but that means absolutely nothing. That's a brilliant example of how something being technically legal does not make it morally right.
PRSOM x1000. Said it better than I ever could.
0
username2766878
Badges: 11
Rep:
?
#5
Report Thread starter 3 years ago
#5
(Original post by RF_PineMarten)
"Ok then, the Saudis fund vile Islamist groups in Syria, treat women as property, execute rape victims for adultery and execute teenagers for taking part in protests, but what about those poor impoverished British arms dealers?"

Money does not justify selling weapons to Islamist tyrants. That is a morally repugnant attitude to have.

The fact that other countries also have poor human rights records is not an excuse to continue to sell weapons to this particular brutal Islamist theocracy. Pulling support for one despot is better than not pulling it from any.

Saudi Arabia's promotion of wahhabist ideology is legal, but that means absolutely nothing. That's a brilliant example of how something being technically legal does not make it morally right.
How would pulling arms sales actually change Saudi behaviour? It wouldn't. They would find other suppliers and continue doing what they already do. It's our responsibility to prevent Wahhabi ideology from influencing British Muslims, not Saudi responsibility to not promote their ideology. We are failing domestically to put in measures to prevent Saudi funding from contaminating Muslim religious institutions in the UK, that's our fault. We're also simultaneously backing regime change in Syria and aligning ourselves with Saudi foreign policy. We could take a neutral approach to Syria and not support any side of the war and prevent Saudi money from flowing into UK mosques and still sell arms. Not selling them arms would mean nothing until we did the former and if we did accomplish the former, why shouldn't we sell them arms? Money talks. We need the jobs and investment that the arms industry brings. We don't need to kiss up to the Saudi regime or support their foreign policy or let them promote Wahhabism here but we shouldn't let that interfere with doing business with them.
0
username2053059
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#6
Report 3 years ago
#6
(Original post by Sycatonne23)
How would pulling arms sales actually change Saudi behaviour? It wouldn't. They would find other suppliers and continue doing what they already do. It's our responsibility to prevent Wahhabi ideology from influencing British Muslims, not Saudi responsibility to not promote their ideology. We are failing domestically to put in measures to prevent Saudi funding from contaminating Muslim religious institutions in the UK, that's our fault. We're also simultaneously backing regime change in Syria and aligning ourselves with Saudi foreign policy. We could take a neutral approach to Syria and not support any side of the war and prevent Saudi money from flowing into UK mosques and still sell arms. Not selling them arms would mean nothing until we did the former and if we did accomplish the former, why shouldn't we sell them arms? Money talks. We need the jobs and investment that the arms industry brings. We don't need to kiss up to the Saudi regime or support their foreign policy or let them promote Wahhabism here but we shouldn't let that interfere with doing business with them.
The fact of the matter is, thousands more civilians will die, particularly in Yemen using OUR weapons systems, if you have your way. There's no way you can morally justify selling arms to a regime you know is deliberately starving innocent civilians and preaching their evil ideology across the world. The Saudis are scum.
0
RF_PineMarten
Badges: 18
Rep:
?
#7
Report 3 years ago
#7
(Original post by Sycatonne23)
How would pulling arms sales actually change Saudi behaviour? It wouldn't. They would find other suppliers and continue doing what they already do. It's our responsibility to prevent Wahhabi ideology from influencing British Muslims, not Saudi responsibility to not promote their ideology. We are failing domestically to put in measures to prevent Saudi funding from contaminating Muslim religious institutions in the UK, that's our fault. We're also simultaneously backing regime change in Syria and aligning ourselves with Saudi foreign policy. We could take a neutral approach to Syria and not support any side of the war and prevent Saudi money from flowing into UK mosques and still sell arms. Not selling them arms would mean nothing until we did the former and if we did accomplish the former, why shouldn't we sell them arms? Money talks. We need the jobs and investment that the arms industry brings. We don't need to kiss up to the Saudi regime or support their foreign policy or let them promote Wahhabism here but we shouldn't let that interfere with doing business with them.
I don't care whether it has an impact on Saudi policy or not, we should not be providing weapons to a brutal Islamist theocracy who then use our weapons to (allegedly) comitt war crimes.

Saudi Arabia have long wanted regime change in Syria and they've had no problem supporting some vile Islamist groups fighting the government there. If you want to take a neutral stance in that war, Saudi Arabia are an obstacle. Western support emboldens them and makes them think that our government will support what they want to do.

If we don't need to "kiss up" to the Saudis, then why has our government done exactly that and shielded them from the UN? An EU proposal to the UN regarding possible war crimes in Yemen got severely watered down because of intervention by our government.
0
username2766878
Badges: 11
Rep:
?
#8
Report Thread starter 3 years ago
#8
(Original post by cbreef)
The fact of the matter is, thousands more civilians will die, particularly in Yemen using OUR weapons systems, if you have your way. There's no way you can morally justify selling arms to a regime you know is deliberately starving innocent civilians and preaching their evil ideology across the world. The Saudis are scum.
Why do you think people buy arms in the first place? To put them on display? By using your logic we would pretty much have to abolish our arms industry. If you're going to morally object to arm sales to a particular country on the grounds that they kill innocent people then you'd have to object to arms sales to most other countries as arms aren't a pacifist's first choice of instrument. I'm not saying I agree with Saudi conduct in Yemen but I truly don't see how harming British manufacturing will somehow help the situation, especially if the Saudis have to resort to buying more rudimentary and less precise weapon systems which kill even more civilians.
0
username2766878
Badges: 11
Rep:
?
#9
Report Thread starter 3 years ago
#9
(Original post by RF_PineMarten)
I don't care whether it has an impact on Saudi policy or not, we should not be providing weapons to a brutal Islamist theocracy who then use our weapons to (allegedly) comitt war crimes.

Saudi Arabia have long wanted regime change in Syria and they've had no problem supporting some vile Islamist groups fighting the government there. If you want to take a neutral stance in that war, Saudi Arabia are an obstacle. Western support emboldens them and makes them think that our government will support what they want to do.

If we don't need to "kiss up" to the Saudis, then why has our government done exactly that and shielded them from the UN? An EU proposal to the UN regarding possible war crimes in Yemen got severely watered down because of intervention by our government.
Not caring about whether or not pulling arms sales from Saudi Arabia has an impact on their behaviour is childish virtue signalling and shouldn't form the basis of foreign policy. Taking a neutral stance in a war doesn't mean we need to actively oppose a country which doesn't. As a non interventionist if I were in charge I wouldn't support or oppose any international resolutions which want to investigate the Saudis so I don't support the government on that.
0
username2053059
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#10
Report 3 years ago
#10
(Original post by Sycatonne23)
Why do you think people buy arms in the first place? To put them on display? By using your logic we would pretty much have to abolish our arms industry. If you're going to morally object to arm sales to a particular country on the grounds that they kill innocent people then you'd have to object to arms sales to most other countries as arms aren't a pacifist's first choice of instrument. I'm not saying I agree with Saudi conduct in Yemen but I truly don't see how harming British manufacturing will somehow help the situation, especially if the Saudis have to resort to buying more rudimentary and less precise weapon systems which kill even more civilians.
The difference between the Saudis and most other civilised countries is that they don't intentionally target civilians. You're right, stopping the sale of arms to them probably won't deter them, but at least we can take the moral high ground and say we are no longer involved in this bloodshed. They're starving kids for Christ's sake.
0
Awesome50
Badges: 8
Rep:
?
#11
Report 3 years ago
#11
Why is everyone in the UK taking a negative stance towards the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia? Why do you assume they have an agenda in this country to spread the Wahabbi ideology without clear evidence of this? I understand people's concerns about the sad situation in Yemen but I also believe that it is not their intention to kill Yemeni civillians only to rid the country from Houthi terrorists.
0
IQRAKHAN077
Badges: 6
Rep:
?
#12
Report 4 weeks ago
#12
(Original post by username2766878)
1) Because they'll buy it elsewhere. Believe it or not, the UK's not the only arms dealer on the planet. The supply we withdraw will be happily provided by the US, France, Germany or maybe even Russia. What have we actually achieved?

2) Because it's bad for Britain. Like it or not, arms sales make an important contribution to our economy. It supports jobs and investment and it's a credit to our balance of payments. Saudi Arabia happens to be one of our biggest customers. We'll be shooting ourselves in the foot.

3) Because it's impractical virtue signalling. If you're going to make a moral case against arms sales, then you can pretty much make a moral case with having diplomatic or business relations with any despotic regime ever. Shall we suspend cheap Chinese imports to criticise China's human rights violations? Shall we freeze in the winter because we won't buy Russian gas because we're angry at how Putin's a quasi dictator? If your approach is moral and not practical, where do you draw the line?

4) Because it's our job to insulate ourselves from Islamist ideology, not Saudi Arabia's job to not promote it. Whilst it would obviously help if the Saudis didn't pump billions into promoting ultra orthodox Islamist ideology which encourages people to join ISIS and launch terror attacks and as despicable as the ideology is, we have to take responsibility to ensure that communities in our country don't fall victim to it. Technically what the Saudi State is doing with its oil money in relation to pumping Islamist ideology is legitimate and doesn't violate any laws. Our politicians should have the cahonas to ban institutions accepting Saudi money promoting Wahhabism and to be more assertive with our anti-Jihadist narrative. We should look there before we damage our own industry in a futile attempt to change the behavioir of a state by foregoing billions in revenue.

Foreign policy's not a game of moralisms. Our approach to the Saudis has to be practical and effective. Rather than not selling them arms, we shouldn't be supporting regime change in Syria and aligning ourselves with them and nor should we be allowing their money to have such a disproportionate influence in Muslim religious institutions in this country. But not selling arms to them changes nothing, it just makes us poorer.
The fact is why are you only mentioning problematic countries? What about a dozens more countries who are advanced and much more peaceful? If UK is going to think about only itself and its people then why blame terrorist when they bomb your countries as retaliation? you wanna take part in bombing counties and killing innocent people in the name of economy and the fact that other states might sell them weapons if you dont is a really pathetic excuse. Many countries like Netherlands , Finland , Canada, Norway , Japan all are far more advanced but have no part when it comes to war. UK is a greedy nation and has been taking and taking as much as it can since the very begining. Nothing is ever enough. Why are Muslim people becoming terrorist because all the countries are trying to tear middle east apart as their eyes are on the oil and other resources.You are responsible for making terrorist not a peaceful religion. Its like saying your going to beat someone up black and blue and if they do it to you its unlawful and violent.
0
X
new posts
Back
to top
Latest
My Feed

See more of what you like on
The Student Room

You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

Personalise

What factors affect your mental health the most right now?

Anxiousness about lockdown easing (145)
4.88%
Uncertainty around my education (438)
14.73%
Uncertainty around my future career prospects (334)
11.23%
Lack of purpose or motivation (414)
13.93%
Lack of support system (eg. teachers, counsellors, delays in care) (139)
4.68%
Impact of lockdown on physical health (180)
6.05%
Loneliness (255)
8.58%
Financial worries (109)
3.67%
Concern about myself or my loves ones getting/having been ill (121)
4.07%
Exposure to negative news/social media (135)
4.54%
Lack of real life entertainment (161)
5.42%
Lack of confidence in making big life decisions (261)
8.78%
Worry about missed opportunities during the pandemic (281)
9.45%

Watched Threads

View All