Australian War Memorial: Stop accepting funding from weapon-makers

Australian War Memorial Director and Council

The Australian War Memorial increasingly seeks and accepts sponsorships from the world’s largest multinational weapon manufacturers. These companies reap enormous profits from war; for them, ongoing warfare leads to greater business success. They have no place in a memorial to our war dead.

To: Australian War Memorial Director and Council
From: [Your Name]

To the Director and Council of the Australian War Memorial:

We are horrified to learn of AWM sponsorships from weapons manufacturers.

It is unacceptable that:
• Every visitor to the AWM is greeted by an illuminated screen featuring the corporate logos of these companies.
• The 'BAE Systems Theatre' is actively promoted for hire, thus marketing Britain’s biggest weapons maker. BAE Systems is a major military supplier to Saudi Arabia, a country known to sponsor terrorism, and which is currently committing atrocities against civilians in Yemen. BAE has been the subject of multiple corruption investigations, including for its dealings with Saudi Arabia.
• You have a three-year partnership deal with Lockheed Martin, the world's largest weapons manufacturer, which also has a history of corruption. The deal includes assistance with commemorating the centenary of Armistice Day. During World War 1, the weapons industry made huge profits as Australians and others were slaughtered in unprecedented numbers.

We also note many other multinational weapons companies are sponsors and donors, including Boeing, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon, and Thales.

We would not accept cigarette or alcohol company sponsorship of hospital wards. It is totally inappropriate for weapons makers to sponsor our national War Memorial.

The Australian War Memorial should be a place of genuine commemoration and learning. Vested interests in warfare are incompatible with both of these goals. All funding from weapons companies should cease.