Monday, September 9, 2013

Blood Diamond - From Sierra Leone to Israel.

Blood Diamond (or war diamonds) are those diamonds obtained in a war zone, by using slaves or slave-people regime.

The development of practices like these are factual and concise example of massive human rights violation and the obvious existence of slavery and the power of transnational corporations, traffic, customs and big fashion brands.

 Some of the harshest conflicts that have erupted in Africa due to diamond smuggling ending in the most prestigious jewelers in Europe and the United States.
In particular, details the tragedy suffered in Liberia and Sierra Leone (although it refers to the horror that took place in Angola) in the 90s as a result of the shady dealings of then Liberian president Charles Taylor and his relationship with the insurgent group RUF in Sierra Leone.

However, it also covers the origins of modern diamond trade in the latter part of the nineteenth century in South Africa and how soon the ambitious entrepreneur and British colonizer Cecil Rhodes founded the largest diamond company to present: De Beers .
Special thanks to the NGO Global witness who have struggled to "break" the link between natural resource exploitation and human rights abuses through their research
and international reports.

A Recommended Documentary

The Israel diamond industry is one of the largest in the world when it comes to the production of raw cut diamonds for sale. About half of gem quality diamonds in the world comes from Israel. In 2004, Israel sold more than 16.3 billion U.S. dollars (U.S. $) in polished diamonds.

Diamond industry in Israel - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

 Every year, consumers the world over unwittingly spend billions of dollars on diamonds crafted in Israel, thereby helping to fund one of the world's most protracted and contentious conflicts.

 Most people are unaware that Israel is one of the world's leading producers of cut and polished diamonds. As diamonds are normally not hallmarked, consumers cannot distinguish an Israeli diamond from one crafted in India, Belgium, South Africa or elsewhere. 

 The global diamond industry and aligned governments, including the EU, have hoodwinked consumers into believing the diamond trade has been cleansed of diamonds that fund human rights abuses, but the facts are startlingly different.

The high-value end of the diamond industry is the main artery of the Israeli economy, accounting for more than 30 percent of Israel's total manufacturing exports worth nearly $20 billion in 2008 ("Trade Performance HS: Exports of Israel" accessed 25 March 2010). By comparison, the budget for Israel's Ministry of Defense was $16 billion in 2008.

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