Tuesday, March 28, 2017

The Many Profits in War

It is not only the big league military-industrial-complex that profits from war.

It also occurs in many ways at the ground level. From minor league Sheikhs to gun smugglers to checkpoint shakedown artists, the war profiteering game is on. There is plenty of money to pocket. The Economist explains how it goes down in Yemen:
Warlords on the road in between erect checkpoints to rob travellers and merchants...As Yemen’s formal economy collapses, a war economy has taken its place. For a fee, any truck can pass checkpoints without inspection, no matter what it carries. Weapons-smuggling is rife; particularly, says a diplomat, of Saudi-supplied arm...

Sheikhs offer their tribesmen as fighters for neighbouring countries willing to pay for regional influence. (One warlord supposedly presented his Saudi backers with a payroll of 465,000 men.) For a further fee—call it performance-related pay—they might even advance. Ending the conflict might cost the warring parties their livelihoods, so they have stopped talking to the UN’s special envoy. When the unfortunate diplomat arranged a ceasefire-monitoring centre in Saudi Arabia, the Houthis bombed it. “They and their sons make millions at the expense of hungry Yemenis,” says a frustrated mediator.

No comments:

Post a Comment