Last week was an international day of action to end the war in Yemen. As a small act of solidarity, we wheatpasted posters up across Providence and surrounding cities to call attention to the role that General Dynamics plays in the war. General Dynamics has sold billions of dollars worth of weapons to Saudi Arabia, which has used them on civilians in Yemen. Here in Rhode Island, General Dynamics builds nuclear armed submarines at their massive facility at Quonset Point. They are one of the largest employers in the state.
As many of you know, the war on Yemen is currently creating the largest humanitarian crises in the world, with 20 million people – 12 million of which are children – in dire need of humanitarian aid. With Saudi interference, medical and humanitarian systems have disentigrated as much as sanitation and water lines. In the midst of this crises, the Saudi-led coalition with UK and US assistance have continued to ravage the country’s civilians lives with blatant targeting of religious, medical and educational institutions. One of the most deadly perpetrations of violence are Saudi-led coalition airstrikes.
Assisted by UK and US forces, Saudi-led coalition airstrikes are responsible for 67% of civilian fatalities in the war on Yemen.
The Saudi-led coalition has also carried out at minimum 244 airstrikes targeting schools. At least 57% of “verified” attacks on schools were carried out by the coalition. This percentage has increased to 85% (2017) to 95% (2019). In 2018, a school bus filled with children was hit by a guided missile from an airstrike, with a resulting varying reports of 26 -44 fatalities.
This incident has been described by international rights watch organizations as a war crime, one of a culture of blatant human rights abuses that the coalition has cultivated with the support of their allies, the USA and UK.
As the manufacturer of the missile that struck the innocent children in 2018, GENERAL DYNAMICS is complicit in these war crimes. General Dynamics IS COMPLICIT IN THESE WAR CRIMES AND ALL OTHER HUMAN RIGHTS VIOLATIONS AND FATALITIES FROM WHICH THEY HAVE PROFITED.
Locally, General Dynamics is producing war machines and weapons of mass destruction. In December 2019, the United States Navy agreed on a contact with General Dynamics (as well as their subsidiary Electric Boat) and Huntington Ingalls Industries to build 9-10 Virginia Class nuclear powered submarine. Then this past November General Dynamics recieved a contract to build two Columbia class submarines that will be armed with nuclear missiles. These will be the largest nuclear submarines the United States has ever produced. Both of these violent and unnecessary projects will be completed in Rhode Island.
We hope that our simple action yesterday will raise awareness about General Dynmics role in the war on Yemen, and inspire other people to take action to hold them accountable.