the USA and Britain began their blitz on Baghdad and
invasion of Iraq on 20 March, thousands of people
have been killed and many more grievously injured.
The victims include many Iraqi civilians, including
of the devastation of life and property has been caused
by weapons made by the American company Raytheon,
the world¹s biggest producer of missiles. Both
the American and British forces are firing Raytheon
missiles, which include Tomahawk cruise missiles,
Patriots, ''bunker busters'' and cluster bombs. Among
those killed by Raytheon missiles are the 62 or more
civilians who died in a Baghdad market place on Friday
In August 1999, in a bizarre spin-off from Northern
Ireland¹s peace process, Raytheon established
a software development centre in Derry City. While
this centre is not manufacturing missiles, its role
includes work for the British Ministry of Defence
and developing e-commerce software for the company.
was invited to Derry by the internationally renowned
politician John Hume, the local MP and MEP, as part
of the effort to build the city's economy following
the cessation of violence. State funding came from
the Industrial Development Board. Hume had won the
Nobel Peace Prize for his leading role in the peace
process, as had Ulster Unionist leader David Trimble.
Hume and Trimble welcomed Raytheon to Derry. The city
council, dominated by the SDLP and Sinn Fein, has
consistently supported the company¹s presence.
people in the city opposed to the international arms
trade immediately began a vigorous campaign to expel
the company, using street theatre, murals and demonstrations
to draw attention to Raytheon¹s lethal products.
This campaign became ever more urgent as the invasion
of Iraq neared.
rights campaigner Dr Robbie McVeigh says: 'Before
the war started, we gave a personal letter to every
city councillor pleading with them to take a stand
against Raytheon, and saying they would bear a heavy
responsibility if they failed to do so. Before long,
more people will have been killed in Iraq than the
4,000 people who died in our conflict here in Ireland,
and Raytheon¹s weapons will be responsible for
many of those deaths.'
opposing Raytheon, the campaigners also recognised
Derry¹s urgent need for jobs. They founded the
Foyle Ethical Investment Campaign (FEIC), aiming
to develop socially responsible employment opportunities
in the city.
'The people of Derry do not want their city to be
associated with the evil arms trade,' says FEIC spokesperson
Jim Keys. 'Raytheon came here as part of the peace
dividend, so we are exchanging peace at home for war
abroad. We want good investors, who will produce positive
products and protect the community¹s rights.'
and its products
is a American multi-national arms manufacturer based
in Lexington, Massachussetts. Details about the company
and its products are available on its website, www.raytheon.com.
It donates large sums to political parties; recipients
include the British Labour Party.
has 77,500 employees around the world, including 2,300
in the UK, of whom some 60 are employed in Derry.
There have been layoffs recently, both in Derry and
elsewhere, as a result of the global economic downturn.
Raytheon is the biggest missile manufacturer in the
world, and the fourth largest arms company in terms
of military sales (see Gideon Burrows, The No-Nonsense
Guide to the Arms Trade, pub. New Internationalist
& Verso, 2002). Within three weeks of the attack
on New York¹s twin towers on 9 September 2001,
Raytheon¹s shares rose 40 per cent. Raytheon
also produces products which have civilian applications,
including air traffic control systems.
Missiles produced by Raytheon include Tomahawk cruise
missiles (which cost at least $500,000 each and are
currently devastating Baghdad) along with Paveways,
Patriots, Sidewinders and Stingers. They also make
the Maverick, which was first used in Vietnam and
has been extensively used since.
coded weapon fragment seen by Robert Fisk in the second
Baghdad market place to be bombed, where some 62 civilians
were killed, came from a Raytheon weapon, possibly
a High-Speed Anti-Radiation Missile (HARM) (see The
Independent, 2 April 2003, article appended below).
Raytheon sells the TOW anti-tank missile to Israel,
which has fired many of them in Palestinian refugee
camps, causing widespread death and injury and destroying
many homes. Graffiti recently appeared in Derry reading:
'Palestine burns, Raytheon earns.'
also makes the JSOW cluster bomb, carrying BLU-97
bomblets. A BLU-97 which had landed in a civilian
area of Iraq was pictured on television on 1 April.
The cluster bomb is a ferocious weapon described by
the Washington Post as having 'a unique civilian
impact' (26 February 2001).
The JSOW bomb carries a warhead consisting of 145
bomblets which are released about 400 feet above the
target. These bomblets are about the size of soft-drinks
cans, and float with the wind. On average, five per
cent of them do not explode, but lie about on the
ground, remaining a lethal hazard for years after
they are dropped.
In previous conflicts, cluster bombs have killed many
civilians,including children, and thousands of people
have lost limbs. The International Red Cross has declared
that the use of cluster bombs and other types of sub-munitions
in populated areas should be banned.
Rights Watch has called for a global moratorium on
the use of cluster bombs, reporting: 'During the 1991
Gulf War, the United States and its allied coalition
dropped bombs containing about twenty million submunitions,
and also reportedly fired artillery projectiles containing
more than thirty million submunitions. These resulted
in millions of hazardous duds, each functioning like
an indiscriminate antipersonnel landmine. At least
eighty U.S. casualties during the war were attributed
to cluster munition duds. More than 4,000 civilians
have been killed or injured by cluster munition duds
since the end of the war.'
There are various types of cluster bomb, manufactured
by different companies. Several of these carry BLU-97
sub-munitions. (see http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/systems/munitions/blu-97.htm.)
Raytheon also produces the 'bunker buster' bomb, which
penetrates deep into concrete and hard ground. The
latest version is the EGBU-38, replacing the GBU-37.
Systems Ltd established its software centre in a business
park on the outskirts of Derry in 1999. The centre
currently employs some 60 people, and makes use of
graduates and expertise from the University of Ulster
(whose Magee Campus is located in the city) and Queen's
University in Belfast.
The company is vague about what it actually does in
Derry. Its website says the Derry centre is working
on ASTOR, an 'airborne radar surveillance programme'
funded by the British Ministry of Defence to the tune
of £800 million.
The spokesman for Raytheon Systems Ltd, Mike Brown,
told a journalist recently that the Derry centre was
working on air traffic control systems and the development
of an e-commerce website, which would enable, for
example, spare parts to be bought over the internet.
Raytheon was invited to Derry by John Hume, local
MP and MEP, and then leader of the SDLP. Not only
had Hume won the Nobel Peace Prize for his role in
the Northern Ireland peace process, but he had also
been a longstanding and outspoken critic of violence
employed by Irish paramilitary groups.
Both John Hume and his fellow Nobel Peace Prize-winner
David Trimble, leader of the Ulster Unionist Party,
formally welcomed Raytheon to Derry at a ceremony
in the city¹s Guildhall on 24 August 1999.
In a statement which has been angrily contested by
protesters, Hume said that Raytheon's decision 'to
locate a major software plant in my home city... will
be warmly welcomed by all of our citizens.'
Derry City Council has been fully behind Raytheon.
The council is overwhelming nationalist, with 14 SDLP
councillors and 10 Sinn Fein. There are six Unionist
councillors (four DUP and 2 UUP).
Concerned local people launched a vigorous protest
campaign as soon as Raytheon arrived in Derry, but
the council studiously ignored it. Then at the first
council meeting after the invasion of Iraq, Sinn Féin
put forward a successful motion that the council should
hold a special meeting to hear all sides of the debate.
At the time of writing this meeting has not taken
draw attention to the evils of the arms trade, and
the diversion of huge sums to death and destruction
which could be spent on socially useful projects both
at home and abroad.
Angela Hegarty is a human rights activist and lawyer,
and a former vice-chairperson of the SDLP. 'The arms
trade is completely immoral,' she says.' 'It is dreadful
that Raytheon came here as part of our peace process.
Instead of beating our swords into ploughshares, we
are beating them into missiles to kill people overseas'
Angela points out the social and economic cost of
the arms trade: 'Billions of pounds are spent on buying
arms, which could be spent on schools and hospitals
here, and on medicine and clean water and agricultural
products in the developing world. More than 1.6 million
children are dying each year because of diseases caused
by unclean water, according to UNICEF. We could put
that right with only a fraction of the money spent
every year on buying weapons from companies like Raytheon.'
The campaigners' activities have included a monthly
vigil at the Raytheon plant, as well as many events
using street theatre and art. On Good Friday two years
running, a walk has been held on the theme of the
Passion, starting at the Raytheon plant and stopping
for dramatic performances at ''sites of collaboration'',
including the city council offices and Magee Campus.
When the invasion of Iraq started, protesters staged
a ''die-in'' outside the Guildhall, and also peacefully
entered the Raytheon plant, attracting considerable
interest from the local media on both occasions (Derry
Journal, 28 March 2003).
Most recently, they protested against George Bush's
visit to Belfast on 7 to 8 April by transforming three
Derry landmarks. They shrouded ''Free Derry Wall''
in black, altered the statue of two men known as the
Derry Tappers to show them decommissioning a missile,
and transformed the statue of Irish goddess Macha
at Altnagelvin Hospital into a peace shrine (photographs
are on http://www.indymedia.ie/cgi-bin/newswire.cgi?id=41409&start=0&sid=30452
for positive employment
not only argue against the presence of a major arms
company in their midst, but also for the creation
of positive employment opportunities in Derry and
its hinterland. To this end, they formed the Foyle
Ethical Investment Campaign (FEIC).
The area is suffering severely from globalisation,
losing jobs in the clothing industry to Africa and
Asia. FEIC argues that the gap should be filled neither
by companies producing weapons of mass destruction,
nor by companies that will vanish as soon as the state
handouts run out. One project FEIC supporters are
aiding is Brí Nua, which aims to set up a community-owned
windfarm in County Donegal.
FEIC spokesperson Jim Keys says: 'We want companies
to come here that give workers full rights and also
leave something behind them when they go. We also
want to create positive businesses ourselves.'
further information about the campaign against Raytheon
contact Rose Kelly or Jim Keys on 07803 26879
Hume/SDLP, 5 Bayview Terrace, Derry. BT48 7EE. Tel
Féin Constituency Office, Rathmor Centre, Blighs
Lane, Derry. BT48 OLZ. Tel 7130 9264
Systems Limited, Peninsula Court, Ulster Science &
Technology Park, Buncrana Road, Londonderry, BT48
0SL, Northern Ireland. Tel +44 (0)2871 304000, fax
+44 (0)2871 304100
Communications, Raytheon Company, 141 Spring Street,
Lexington, MA 02421, USA.
Brown, Tel +44 (0) 20 7569 5517, fax +44 (0) 20 7569
Raytheon Missile Systems: Colleen Niccum, Tel (USA)
Sara Hammond, tel (USA) 520.794.7810, fax 520.794.1315,
Jennifer Spears-Allen, tel (USA) 520.794.4182, fax
from the London Independent (London), 2 April 2003,
proof: marketplace deaths were caused by a US missile
By Cahal Milmo
American missile, identified from the remains of its
serial number, was pinpointed yesterday as the cause
of the explosion at a Baghdad market on Friday night
that killed at least 62 Iraqis.
codes on the foot-long shrapnel shard, seen by the
Independent correspondent Robert Fisk at the scene
of the bombing in the Shu'ale district, came from
a weapon manufactured in Texas by Ray- theon, the
world's biggest producer of "smart" armaments.
identification of the missile as American is an embarrassing
blow to Washington and London as they try to match
their promises of minimal civilian casualties with
the reality of precision bombing.
governments have suggested the Shu'ale bombing - and
the explosion at another Baghdad market that killed
at least 14 people last Wednesday - were caused by
ageing Iraqi anti-aircraft missiles. Jack Straw, the
Secretary, said yesterday it was "increasingly
probable" the first explosion was down to the
Iraqis and Peter Hain, the Welsh Secretary, suggested
on BBC's Newsnight last night that President Saddam
sacked his head of air
defences because they were not working properly.
investigations by The Independent show that
the missile - thought to be either a Harm (High Speed
Anti-Radiation Missile) device, or a Paveway laser-guided
bomb - was sold by Raytheon to the procurement arm
of the US Navy. The American military has confirmed
that a navy EA-6B "Prowler" jet, based on
the USS Kittyhawk, was in action over the Iraqi capital
on Friday and fired at least one Harm missile to protect
two American fighters from a surface-to-air missile
Pentagon and Raytheon, which last year had sales of
$16.8bn (£10.6bn), declined to comment on the
serial number evidence last night. A US Defence Department
spokeswoman said: "Our investigations are continuing.
We cannot comment on serial numbers which may or may
not have been found at the scene."
official Washington source went further, claiming
that the shrapnel could have been planted at the scene
by the Iraqi regime.
Saturday, Downing Street disclosed intelligence that
linked the Wednesday attack - and by implication Friday's
killings - on Iraqi missiles being fired without radar
guidance and falling back to earth. The Prime Minister's
spokesman said: "A large number of surface-to-air
missiles have been malfunctioning and many have failed
to hit their targets and have fallen back on to Baghdad.
We are not saying definitively that these explosions
were caused by Iraqi missiles but people should approach
this with due scepticism."
Anglo-American claims were undermined by the series
of 25 digits and letters on the piece of fuselage
shown to Mr Fisk by an elderly resident of Shu'ale
who lived 100 yards from the site of the 6ft crater
made by the explosion.
numbers on the fragment - retrieved from the scene
and not shown to the Iraqi authorities - read: "30003-704ASB7492".
The letter "B" was partially obscured by
scratches and may be an "H". It was followed
by a second code: "MFR 96214 09."
online database of suppliers maintained by the Defence
Logistics Information Service, part of the Department
of Defence, showed that thevreference MFR 96214 was
the identification or "cage" number of a
Raytheon plant in the city of McKinney, Texas.
30003 reference refers to the Naval Air Systems Command,
the procurement agency responsible for furnishing
the US Navy's air force with its weaponry.
Pentagon refused to disclose which weapon was designated
by the remaining letters and numbers, although defence
experts said the information could be found within
seconds from the Nato database of all items of military
hardware operated across the Alliance, "from
a nuclear bomb to a bath plug", as one put it.
which also produces the Patriot anti-missile system
and the Tomahawk cruise missile, lists its Harms and
its latest Paveway III laser-guided bombs, marketed
with the slogan "One bomb, one target",
as among its most accurate weaponry.
company's sales description for its anti-radar missile
says: "Harm was designed with performance and
quality in mind. In actual field usage, Harm now demonstrates
reliability four times better than specification.
weapons arsenal is complete without Harm in its inventory."
with apparent proof that one of its missiles had been
less accurate than specification, Raytheon was more
coy on the capabilities of its products. A spokeswoman
at the company's headquarters in Tucson, Arizona,
said: "All questions relating to the use of our
products in the field are to be handled by the appropriate
experts said the damage caused at Shu'ale was consistent
with that of Paveway or, more probably, a Harm weapon,
which carries a warhead designed to explode into thousands
of aluminium fragments and has a range of
its manufacturer's claims, it also has a record of
unreliability when fired at a target which "disappears"
if, as the Iraqi forces do, the target's operators
switch their radar signal rapidly on and off. Nick
Cook, of Jane's Defence Weekly, said: "The problem
with Harms is that they can be seduced away from their
targets by any sort of curious transmission. They
are meant to have corrected that but there have been
problems." During the Kosovo conflict four years
ago, a farmer and his daughter were badly injured
when a missile exploded in their village. A shard
of the casing was found near by with a reference very
similar to that found in Baghdad: "30003 704AS4829
American navy confirmed that one of its Prowler jets,
which is used to jam enemy radar, had been over an
unspecified area of Baghdad on Friday night. A pool
reporter on the carrier USS Kittyhawk was told that
the Prowler squadron had fired its first Harm on Friday
evening in response to an air-defence unit that was
threatening two F/A-18 Hornet jets. Lieutenant Rob
Fluck told the journalist that the crew had not seen
where their missile had landed.
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