Meet the Arms Dealers

We gain rare access to an industry often cloaked in secrecy. We meet the people involved and broach the moral dilemmas they face. Should they be able to sell weapons to any country? What about UN embargoes on weapons sales to unstable territories?

We begin in Herstal, a tranquil little town in Belgium. At first glance, it seems to be an average Belgian town; the streets are nicely paved and the people look happy and prosperous. Yet the source of the town’s wealth is far from ordinary: it is the F.N Herstal arms factory. Exceptionally, F.N Herstal let us film their activities, from the factory assembly lines to the international arms fairs in the Middle East.

Territories under embargo represent an excellent business opportunity for illegal arms dealers. We meet the victims of this illegal trade in the republic of Congo; civilians shot down in the streets with illegally obtained automatic weapons. 1.5 light weapons are in circulation in Congo despite the embargo. The results are devastating. Our quest to find the illegal arms dealers brings us to none other than Viktor Bout, the 42 year old Russian who inspired the 2005 political crime thriller ‘Lord of War’, which starred Nicholas Cage.

Film info
Production info

YEAR : 2009 / DURATION : 57 MIN / PRODUCTION : Tac Presse/ DIRECTOR : Stéphane Malterre / VERSION AVAILABLE :FRENCH

Previous broadcasts include Acht TV, RTBF, Radio Canada, SIC and TVE