The United Nations General Assembly overwhelmingly approved a treaty April 2 to reduce the international sale of attack helicopters, combat aircraft, large-caliber rifles, missiles and launchers, and other weapons that kill thousands of innocent people every year.
The treaty, which according to the New York Times took seven years to negotiate, was opposed by North Korea, Syria, Iran and the National Rifle Association (NRA).
While currently focusing its fire-power on efforts to introduce handguns and other weapons into public schools, the NRA blasted the United Nations vote, claiming it would violate the “sovereignty of the United States.”
The U.S. is the world’s largest exporter of weapons of all kinds, with reported sales estimated to be $70 billion a year.
Other neo-fascist groups, such as the Heritage Foundation, also opposed the treaty, suggesting it “blames weapons” for the problems and “not those who use them.”
The NRA and founders of the Heritage Foundation supported covert arms shipments to the Contras and other terrorist groups in the 1980s. (The Contras were a armed band of mercenaries that attempted to overthrow the Sandinistas in Nicaragua.)
Right-wing fanatics also backed the secret shipment of missiles and other sophisticated weapons to Afghanistan during that nation’s insurgent war against the former Soviet Union.
President Ronald Reagan and leading members of the Republiklan secretly approved massive spending to arm and train what they called “freedom fighters” in Afghanistan. Those groups would later become known as the Taliban and al-Qaeda. One of the darlings of the “freedom fighters” in Afghanistan was the dashing young Saudi, Osama bin Ladin.
Using the logic of the NRA and Heritage Foundation, groups like al-Qaeda should, perhaps, be allowed to purchase and otherwise acquire weapons since, after all, it is not weapons that kill people but “those who use them.”