Friday, November 4, 2011

Merchant of Death, Viktor Bout

Viktor Bout
This man has been sitting in a jail cell for the last year while governments work to have him extradited.  When Bout was detained there was no agreement between the countries (United States, Russia )that wanted him and the country that held him (Thailand).  He sat in jail until those agreements could be made legal.  The second the agreement was made Viktor Bout was off to the United States for trial on charges against him for weapons dealing.
Viktor Bout has been named as the largest weapons dealer since 1994.  However that note of fame is very tenuous because I am sure the largest weapons dealer is the United States.  With that aside, Bout has been pointed out as the person who sold massive amounts of weapons and ammunition to warlords in Sierra Leone, Liberia, DRC, Sudan, Columbia, Indonesia, etc…    Of course he was called upon a number of times to fly in humanitarian aid for the United Nations and a host of other countries.
Viktor Bout has maintained that he is only providing transportation, which is what the many world governments were using him as, cargo carrying into hot zones.  He was able to do this because his connections made sure that his airplanes were safe.  The weird part of all this is that Viktor Bout was easily reached and had dealings with world governments.  It is only now that he is a wanted man.  The only reason he is wanted now is because he has outlived his usefulness or he is being used as a sacrificial lamb.
He is recognized as selling weapons that have killed millions of people and prolonged many wars.  Yet this one person is a shining example of how chaotic the world is;  A weapons dealer being charged by a country that has committed the exact same crime.  At least Viktor Bout has not illegally invaded another country. 
Honestly what will this do for the world?  The arms manufacturers are still making weapons, wars will still continue on and the countries that can stop the weapons trade will sit by and do nothing to stop it.  The only reason Viktor Bout could do his job rested squarely on the shoulders of governments doing nothing in the first place.  So cheer for the victory of taking one merchant of death off the streets while the devil itself roams free in the halls of the UN Security Council.
Hip Hip, shut up.

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