Tolpuddle Festival report

Joe with the CAAT stall

Tolpuddle festival banner

Every summer, thousands of people flock to the small village of Tolpuddle to celebrate trade unionism and the town’s six famous martyrs. Over the years, the festival has become something of a rallying point for trade unionists and labour activists across the country, and CAAT was here this year with a stall in the martyrs’ marquee to promote our Arms to Renewables campaign.

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20 Years of Edinburgh CAAT

As Edinburgh CAAT group celebrates it’s 20th birthday, long-term group member David Turner reflects on 20 years of campaigning against the arms trade in Scotland.

In 1995 a group of Campaign Against Arms Trade supporters came together for an inaugural meeting, and the Edinburgh CAAT group was formed- the first CAAT group in Scotland.

Edinburgh CAAT group in action

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Stop the Arms Fair: Conference at the Gates

Stop the Arms Fair: Conference at the Gates
A Workshop on Militarism, Resistance and Academic Praxis

Where: ExCeL Centre, East London, E16 1XL
When: Thursday 10th September 2015

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This September arms dealers from around the world will congregate in London’s ExCeL Centre for the DSEI arms fair. As one of the world’s largest arms fairs, DSEI brings together over 1,500 arms companies and military delegations from over 100 countries.

On display will be everything from crowd control equipment to machine guns, tanks, drones and even battleships. It’s a crucial event in the business of the international arms trade, and the deals done here play a major role in reinforcing Western militarism, fueling conflict, repressing dissent and strengthening authoritarian regimes across the world.

The Stop the Arms Fair coalition have called a week of action at the venue to disrupt the setup of the arms fair. On Thursday 10th September, the protests will focus on the relationship between militarism and education. As part of this day, there will be an open air academic workshop at the gates of the ExCeL Centre. Continue reading “Stop the Arms Fair: Conference at the Gates”

Gallery and museum workers vote to oppose arms trade and oil sponsorship

Banner saying "Art for People not Profit"

The last week has seen a significant victory for our campaign to get the arms trade out of public institutions. On Monday 18th May, the Public and Commercial Sector Union (PCS), which represents 5,000 workers in public galleries and museums across the UK, passed two motions at their annual conference in Brighton rejecting the arms trade and oil sponsorship of the cultural sector. Continue reading “Gallery and museum workers vote to oppose arms trade and oil sponsorship”

The election is over – what next?

Cartoon saying "Now What?!!"

The outcome of the General Election and the daunting prospect of continued austerity and increased cuts to public services has no doubt left many campaigners feeling deflated. There is no way around it- the next five years will be challenging and difficult.

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Local action: People’s Inquiry, Streatham

Checkout till with price-tagged weapons systemsLast month a number of local campaign groups based in Lambeth got together in a church hall in Streatham for a meeting that has been called by CAAT.

The purpose wasn’t just to analyse the problems, it was also to discover what we have in common and to discuss our common ground. Continue reading “Local action: People’s Inquiry, Streatham”

Wheel Stop Trident activists cycle from London to Burghfield

Activist are cycling from London to Burghfield to protest the UK’s , as part of protests around the Global Day of Action on Military Spending. Here, activist Nikki Ray explains why she’s joining the Wheel Stop Trident cycle.Wheel stop trident pic

A few weeks ago I was invited to join Wheel Stop Trident, a group of young people cycling to raise awareness about the amount of money the UK spends on nuclear weapons that we don’t need and how re-prioritising this money would improve vital public services that have been cut by the government. Continue reading “Wheel Stop Trident activists cycle from London to Burghfield”

Time to Act: No War! No Warming!

730timetoactIn his book Capitalist Realism: Is There no Alternative? Mark Fisher sharply argues that when it comes to thinking about changing entrenched social norms and priorities our lives have become dominated by an attitude of resignation and fatalism.

Fisher’s argument can be easily applied to mainstream discourses around climate change and militarism. Just as capitalism dominates the horizon of the possible, talks and ideas for a future without fossil fuels and wars are often rejected as mere utopian fantasy. Indeed, the ‘no alternative’ ideology has such a totalising effect that many seemingly treat ecological catastrophe and the arms trade as facts of nature that simply cannot be reversed, despite hard evidence and rational arguments for the opposite. Continue reading “Time to Act: No War! No Warming!”