Sunday, December 1, 2013


A quick search online finds them available from about 50 cents to a dollar each {certainly varies with caliber & qualities} and cheaper.   But what is the real cost of their mass availability worldwide?

Memory Becomes Another Casualty of Egyptian Protests [from NYT 11-13-13]—A presumed 900 were killed by the army on Aug. 14 2013 breaking up a peaceful sit-in of supporters of democratically elected, then deposed by the army, President Morsi.  This in Rabaa al-Adawiya Square.   Tahrir [Freedom] Square becomes an even more distant memory, as Arab Spring’s spirit of nonviolence is blown further and further away by the Middle East’s militaries, and their international arms merchant suppliers.  The gun runners and their institutions are clawing back to resume full profits and power—bullets are their ballot box, and must be maintained, sacrificing the lives and real needs of the common people.

“Memories are sharper among the people who live and work in the square. Mahmoud Rizk, who runs a nursery there, remembered spending Aug. 14 on the phone with his brother, who was trapped in a hut in the nursery during the fighting.
From the look of the place, it was a miracle that his brother survived. Bullets struck the hut from two sides, shredding metal on the bunk beds where the workers slept. After the fighting had died down, soldiers came with dogs to search for the bullet slugs and remove them.”

Was this simply cover-up, or was the army planning to re-use the bullets?   As long as the U.S. continues to send a billion dollars to the Egyptian army {despite this violating a Congressional mandate against supporting coups}, the answer is obvious.   Israel, at the center of Middle East conflict, gets more than three times this bullets-plus money from the U.S.

Another campaign, run by a Saudi sheikh based in Syria and close to Al Qaeda, is called “Wage Jihad With Your Money.” Donors earn “silver status” by giving $175 for 50 sniper bullets, or “gold status” by giving twice as much for eight mortar rounds.  {From “Private Donors’ Funds Add Wild Card to War in Syria” - NYT 11-13-13}.  Everybody and anybody with extra cash can be dealt a hand in this game of death proliferation.

Chris Rock, American comedian, has a routine in which he suggests a solution to all the gun violence—just make every bullet cost $5000, too expensive to shoot somebody.   Probably wouldn’t work with all the super-rich players and governments in the world, chasing vengeance, power, and general craziness, and willing to pay for it {with proper returns on investment}. 

But there is promise in this Sunday’s Advent reading from the prophet Isaiah {2:1-5}, “They shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks; one nation shall not raise the sword against another, nor shall they train for war again.   When the Messiah the world’s merciful Savior comes, it will not be in a reign of bullets.


Further reference ---



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