According to activists at Palestine Action, drones built at the factory were sold to the Israeli Ministry of Defence and used to attack people in Palestine.
For example, the group says the Hermes 450 drone is “one of the most used drones in the world. The company markets the drone as ‘combat proven’, having battle-tested it on Palestinian people.
“During the attack on Gaza, four young children, all aged between 10 and 11, were murdered when they were targeted by Israeli drones. They were playing on the beach when a Hermes 450 captured footage of them. An Israeli air force commander then ordered the operators of a second drone to fire, killing one of the boys. After firing the first missile, the operators of the second drone pursued the rest of the boys. They did not receive orders to shoot again, but fired anyway, killing the other three.”
That is what this arms dealer was making in the UK, in order to kill people in the Middle East.
The members of Palestine Action object to these remote-control killers being built in Britain, and launched a sustained campaign against the Oldham factory in August 2020. On Monday (January 10), they celebrated victory.
BREAKING: Elbit Ferranti forced to sell and shut down their israeli weapons factory. After dozens of activists took action to occupy, blockade and destroy the site; we’ve #ShutElbitDown PERMANENTLY in #Oldham! https://t.co/eT6CmUOA8i
— Palestine Action (@Pal_action) January 10, 2022
According to the group’s press release, “After 18 months of sustained direct action taken at the Elbit Ferranti site in Oldham, Greater Manchester, with 36 people arrested, Elbit have now sold Ferranti technologies, with its continued operation in Oldham appearing unfeasible.
“Activists have occupied, blockaded, smashed, disrupted, and protested regularly at the site, ultimately succeeding in ending the factory’s production of specialist military technologies for Israel’s fleet of combat drones.”
Let’s be perfectly clear: This Site does not condone the employment of illegal methods to achieve a goal. But while 36 activists have been arrested at various times during the campaign, none have been successfully prosecuted for crimes of occupation, disruption and/or protest.
On the other hand, Elbit’s drones have been used to kill thousands of Palestinians. Who would you say occupies the moral high ground?
Former Labour MP, now leading light in the Resist movement, Chris Williamson is clear on the subject:
Wonderful news. Israeli arms company closes its Oldham factory. pic.twitter.com/hXdMOhYrNW
— Chris Williamson (@DerbyChrisW) January 11, 2022
So is Asa Winstanley of The Electronic Intifada:
Here's my full report:
Israel’s Elbit sells UK arms factory targeted by activists https://t.co/r7vXojNrBZ
— Asa Winstanley (@AsaWinstanley) January 10, 2022
And so is This Writer.
Let’s hope Elbit’s other UK factories suffer similar misfortunes in the near future and these death-mongers are forced out of the UK for good.
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