Landmine Action on Raytheon & cluster bombs

I would note below the decision of the Norwegian Pension Fund (possible the largest investment fund in the world) to exclude Raytheon from investment on the basis of their involvement with cluster munition manufacture:

Online ref: http://www.regjeringen.no/en/dep/fin/Selected-topics/andre/Ethical-Guidelines-for-the-Government-Pension-Fund---Global-/Recommendations-and-Letters-from-the-Advisory-Council-on-Ethics/Recommendation-on-Exclusion-of-Cluster-Weapons-from-the-Government-Petroleum-Fund.html?id=419583

Specifically they say:

"Raytheon Company produces, according to its own web-site (Joint Stand Off Weapon), and cluster munitions to these: “JSOW integrates the BLU-97 combined effects bomblets and the BLU-108 sensor fused weapon submunitions for area targets or armoured vehicles”. These are considered as cluster weapons. This information is confirmed by Jane’s Information Group. The company has not replied to the communication from Norges Bank.

The Advisory Council recommends that Raytheon Company should be excluded from the Government Petroleum Fund."

The pdf report that they make reference to is attached to this email. I note that it has copyright dated up to 2006. As of today it is still available for download from the Raytheon website - so if the information is "out of date" etc as Raytheon assert, it is coming from them.

Furthermore it is important to note the following:

That although there is no internationally agreed definition of a cluster munition or cluster bomb, most definitions include both the container and the explosive submunitions that are packed within that container. I have attached a report of an experts meeting hosted by the International Committtee of the Red Cross (ICRC) - p.61 has a paper on definitions that illustrates this point.

I note this because Raytheon's assertion that they "have never manufactured cluster bombs" is misleading if this issue of definition is considered. If they have manufactured container munitions for the dispersal of explosive submunitions then they been directly involved in cluster munition manufacture. Their reponse - based on claiming that they have not produced the explosive submunitions - does not square with these technical definitions - including the definition of a 'cluster bomb unit' used by NATO.

Another point of note might be that these weapons produced by Raytheon are still in service. There is something rather distasteful about making money out of the manufacture and sale of these weapons and then claiming no responsibislity as soon as the goods have left the factory and the order is closed. The idea that this is all no in the past and that Raytheon should no longer be considered anything to do with cluster munitions seems unconvincing.

I think you have a strong case against them on this issue and we would be glad to provide any further information or engagement that might be useful.

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