This video from Al Jazeera shows an exclusive interview with one of Britain’s leading investigative journalists and a former insider.
‘The Trail of the Dove’ reveals the extent of surcharges, commissions and the $100 million secret fund used by the UK’s leading arms firm, BAE Systems, to grease the wheels of the biggest arms deals in British history.
Al-Yamamah ‘The Dove’ is the name of a series of massive arms sales by the United Kingdom to Saudi Arabia.
It is Britain’s largest ever export agreement, and the prime contractor has been BAE Systems and its predecessor British Aerospace, which earned £43 billion in 20 years.
Both the UK’s National Audit Office (report never released) and The Serious Fraud Office (halted) conducted investigations into corruption allegations.
Trail of the Dove has also had access to ministry of defence secret documents and ambassadorial official correspondence that shows the level of corruption in the British arms trade.
From British daily The Independent:
Bribery team probing BAE case alleges UK dirty tricks
By Marie Woolf, Political Editor
Published: 10 June 2007
Staff at the world’s anti-bribery watchdog claim they were targets of a British-led “dirty tricks” campaign after they began investigating the Government’s decision to halt an official inquiry into secret commission payments to a Saudi prince.
Senior employees at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) allege they were smeared by Britain and put under pressure to drop their probe into allegations that BAE paid bribes to win Saudi arms deals.
One senior figure said it was “absolutely clear” that the OECD was being smeared.
The smears are alleged to range from seeking to remove officials from their posts, undermining them with representatives of other countries and helping to circulate damaging information about staff linked to the inquiry.
Professor Mark Pieth, a Swiss legal expert closely involved in the OECD decision to investigate, is said to be among those being briefed against.
Some suspect British diplomats were involved.
“The dirty tricks boys were all at work,” said a senior OECD figure who asked not to be named.