The Egyptian government’s use of tear gas to quell protest hasn’t stopped since the 18-day uprising of last January. In the last five days, demonstrators have staged a second uprising in Tahrir against the ruling army generals. And the tear gas is more abundant, more deadly, and more American-made than ever before.
This stronger, more lethal tear gas has led to deaths in the square, and its export from third party companies, at least from Britain, has been illegal since before 1999 – according to The Guardian.
In the U.S. it’s a different story. The below tweet claims that the State Department isn’t directly funding the exporting of tear gas:
But in February, ProPublica reported that the U.S. Government selectively regulates the export of the lethal gas, and has approved direct export from the Combined Tactical Systems Incorporated to the Egyptian government.
Can a citizen driven campaign do anything to block the continued shipment of gas into Egypt?
Perhaps – by targeting the company that’s producing and shipping the majority of the gas. This campaign now has more than 4000 signatures on a petition – over at Change.org. Sign the petition to demand that CEO Don Smith cease supplying the Egyptian Supreme Council for Armed Forces (SCAF) with tear gas that is demonstrably fatal, and to pressure majority shareholder Michael Monteleone to wield his clout in order to push Smith and CSI into doing so.