War Industry and its Social Impact in France

 Said El Mansour Cherkaoui  November 18, 2023


Living by and among the shells

The War Industry and its Social Impact in France

One cannot promote war around oneself and elsewhere and have peace in one’s homes and within one’s own borders. We sell weapons to foreigners, we bury our citizens as dividends from the profits made by the war weapons industry: “We reap what we sow”

Arms Export: A Crisis-Escaping Industry and Creator of Human Crisis:


What goes around, comes around – “We reap what we sow”

France as a State has pursued hazardous and intolerable actions at the international level and continues to be part of the club and the bloc which maintains a diplomatic policy of interference and military intervention, including in the countries which were in its own colonies. France also participated directly in the international coalition under the aegis of the United States in the invasion and aerial bombardment of Third World countries, primarily countries of Muslim belief, despite the fact that Islam is currently the second religion in France.

By conducting such war diplomacy, the French state ignored the existence of a Muslim citizen community in France which is sensitive and exposed to the consequences of these external attacks against Muslim countries. In this failure of respect for religious belief by the French State lies the first seeds for the blossoming of a local violent reaction as a form of denunciation or revenge. To cite only recent commitments by France, here are some reference elements in the aggressive policy pursued by France in its relations with Muslim countries:

“Following the attacks of September 11, 2001, NATO member nations implemented Article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty for the first time, and France, although not constrained by this treaty, decided to commit its armed forces to NATO.

Compared to the Cowboy-style invasion in Iraq, the new French president Sarkozy authorized the participation of the French army in Afghanistan where it participated in the war from the end of 2001 in two distinct international operations: the international assistance and defense force. (ISAF) under NATO command and Operation Enduring Freedom under American command. In 2010, she was the fourth contributor to the coalition. The fighting forces were withdrawn at the end of 2012.

En dépit de l’accentuation de la concurrence au niveau internationale, les exportations françaises marquent une progression de près de 18 % des prises de commandes par rapport à 2013, représentant 8,2 milliards d’euros pour l’année 2014. Cette réussite est le fruit de l’implication complète des services de l’État et du ministère de la Défense aux côtés de tous les acteurs industriels réunis au sein de l’équipe France.  Les exportations d’armement constituent une garantie essentielle de l’autonomie de la France en maintenant la capacité du pays à répondre aux futurs besoins d’équipements de ses armées. [... Les excellents résultats 2014 contribuent à la préservation de la base industrielle et technologique de Défense (BITD) tout en apportant une contribution décisive au commerce extérieur du pays. 

Stimulating demand for the war industry means promoting conflicts and even participating in them to demonstrate and prove the quality of one’s firepower. For this, the French General Staff continued to wage war in Afghanistan, bomb Libya, and invade Chad and Mali. Central Africa, the Ivory Coast, bomb Syria and lend a hand against the Yemenis and subsequently expect rejoicing from the Muslim and progressive masses now aware of the stakes as the real actors of these truncated shenanigans.

All these centers of tension and intervention maintained and supplied by the arms industry have allowed France to rank 5th in exports of weapons of war throughout the world, thus receiving more than eight billion euros. orders in 2014, this result was “the best ever recorded”, which the government welcomed.

Indeed, all these exports are done under the control of the government. Decisions on these sales and exports are taken by the Prime Minister, on the advice of the interministerial commission for the study of exports of war materials, made up of the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Defense, and the Economy.


Sometimes, it is the government that operates as the promoter of such sales of war weapons and what matters is the nature or political color of the regime in the purchasing country. Those who claim to be defenders of democracy and freedom take last place in transactions and negotiations for the sale of weapons of war.

These breaches of national principles are not the only breaches, France is bound by international agreements to respect certain embargoes and not to maintain or conduct such commercial arms transactions with certain countries declared persona non grata by legal and legal authorities. international.

The arms trade must respect a series of international rules. Countries like Ivory Coast, Libya, Iran and the Central African Republic are, for example, under embargoes decided by the United Nations Security Council. Sudan, South Sudan, Syria and China are under embargo from the European Union. Despite all these rules, the French government promises and conducts arms sales to these same countries. In short, the importance of the war weapons industry is the only one that wears a bulletproof vest and thus becomes impervious to all crises, it does not experience any and the French government administers its contractual doses which makes it more immune to all kinds of crises or depression.

In the meantime, to alleviate the sense of guilt towards such organic twists and contradictions, Paris is more in the logic of supporting exports. This is because “defense exports are necessary to preserve our defense industrial and technological base,” writes the government.

“And yet, these sales are made in the name of France. As such, they involve the French. » declared Patrice Bouveret, president of the Armaments Observatory. In fact, considerations for citizens are completely absent both at the level of France and at the level of the next victims of the theaters of civil war, invasion and regional quarrels and on the scenes of conflicts where these French weapons will play a murderous role.

The Impact of Military Engagements Abroad on Freedoms in France:

These warlike adventures will be accompanied by attacks on the rights of French citizens. Indeed, the political parties occupying the State opt for the repression of their own population without taking into account that their ancestors put themselves on the barricades and put their bodies in the fire to extract egalitarian, equitable laws. Their sacrifices imposed democratic rights for their own protection against the absolute and obsolete powers of the feudal and dictatorial regimes which marked the evolution of the Institutional History of France. The political parties in power in France had a decadence of their memory and applied the methods of the Cow Boys who made the Patriotic Act prevail to the detriment of individual freedoms under the pretext of the imminent terrorism of Islamic obedience. France took over in this momentum and 62 security laws were passed between 2002 and 2012 and there will be others more restrictive than the previous ones given the recent tragedies in Paris.

“Depuis 2002, de nombreuses lois sécuritaires ont été votées en France, pour la plupart par la droite. Elles affaiblissent les droits du justiciable, augmentent les pouvoirs de la police et des procureurs tout en diminuant ceux du juge, renforcent la surveillance et le fichage des populations, réduisent les libertés publiques, alourdissent les peines, créent des nouveaux délits, s’attaquent à la justice des mineurs en l’alignant sur celle des adultes et transforment des institutions telles que l’école, le travail social ou la psychiatrie.” 

The French State had therefore opened two fronts of a repressive nature. At the national level, it is the questioning of acquired rights and the establishment of a Police State above the previous freedoms granted to citizens. Such restrictions primarily affect minorities and descendants of immigrant populations who are already in precarious situations who have already served prison sentences or simply who have had a few run-ins with the French justice system.

At the international level, resolutions are not pursued or encouraged for latent or existing conflicts. Tensions are more profitable than total wars. For this, a certain passivity of the Western powers tends to let the situation degenerate without there being a winner. Finally, maintaining a balance in the weakness of the countries in dispute or belligerents provides an increase in their armament. They thus become regular buyers in the international arms market. An arms race takes place between them with a joyful look if not encouragement from their first supplier. This does not stop at the level of these two potentially conflicting countries, not at all, since their bordering neighbors will be in some way contaminated by arms fever.

Some bibliographic sources:


Information report from the National Assembly, 2014, on “The support system for arms exports”

2015 report to Parliament on France’s arms exports.


Updating and updating this article:

War economy: the 5 projects to “produce more and faster”

Directorate: Ministry of the Armed Forces / Published on: February 9, 2023

Alexandre Lahousse during the press briefing of the Ministry of the Armed Forces, 9/2/23 – © CH Christian Hamilcaro/Ministry of the Armed Forces

The “war economy” project must be understood as a consequence and a lesson from the conflict in Ukraine. As prescribed by the  National Strategic Review 2022, presented by President Macron last November, it is now essential that industrial resources organize themselves “  to support a long-term war effort, in case of necessity for the armed forces or for the benefit of a partner. The production capabilities for weapons systems, munitions, and maintenance in operational conditions must therefore evolve to meet the needs of possible engagement in a major conflict.

To carry out this sprawling undertaking, the General Directorate of Armaments (DGA), in conjunction with other entities of the Ministry of the Armed Forces and industrialists, tackled five priority projects.

1st project  : visibility for manufacturers

“The goal is for the industry to be able to invest in its production tools in the long term,”  indicates Alexandre Lahousse ,  head of the industrial affairs and economic intelligence department of the DGA.  As such, the future military programming law (2024-2030)  will offer manufacturers of the defense industrial and technological base (BITD)* visibility over seven years. Long-term contracts that cover a list of essential equipment in the event of high-intensity conflict are part of this perspective. Alexandre Lahousse also points out the need to  “share and spread this visibility” among all the players in the production chain, particularly subcontracting SMEs, in order to jointly scale up.

2nd project  : simplification

“What is simple happens better,” recalls Alexandre Lahousse. The objective is, therefore, to start this simplification as soon as the need is expressed and to carry out a “value analysis” upstream, with manufacturers, the armed forces, and the DGA. The latter consists of reviewing the requirements, quantifying them, and assessing the impact in terms of deadlines and costs. The objective is  “to reduce the level of requirements by 20% in order to simplify the work of the industrialist  ”, estimates Alexandre Lahousse. These provisions lead,  de facto, to fewer justifications and imply  “risk sharing between the State and industry”.

3rd project  : securing supply chains

Supply and subcontracting chain times now represent more than 50% of overall production times “The battle of deadlines is therefore won by controlling the subcontracting chains,”  emphasizes Alexandre Lahousse. In this regard, 4% of the 4,000 BITD companies would not be able to accelerate production and in fact, constitute bottlenecks. They will therefore be the subject of studies so that appropriate responses can be provided.

Several levers are also being studied to limit foreign dependencies. Among them, the creation of contingency stocks, particularly on raw materials, or the multiplication of foreign sources of supply when they are unique and, if this is not possible, the relocation of the activities concerned to France.

4th project  : recruitment  

The attractiveness of the defense industry is essential to put  “people behind the machines” , insists Alexandre Lahousse. The emphasis will therefore be placed on communication with younger generations as well as critical skills. The professions of welders or mechanical adjusters are, for example, in high demand among manufacturers. A dialogue with businesses, training schools, and the Ministry of National Education will be initiated on this subject.

5th project  : financing

“The founding model of a company is to be able to raise funds to invest,”  notes Alexandre Lahousse.  “It is therefore essential for us to guarantee access to private financing for BITD companies,”  he adds With this in mind, the Ministry of the Armed Forces has been working for a year to set up a network of banking referents to better dialogue with banking establishments. At the same time, several initiatives are underway to encourage investments in the defense sectors, including at the European level.

*All defense companies that manufacture equipment for the armed forces.

“Putting production capacity back at the heart of our concerns”: faced with the conflict launched by Russia in Ukraine, the French defense industry has entered a “war economy” for several months.

A file from the magazine Esprit Defense.

See the file :

 War economy: producing more and faster, the challenge! | Ministry of the Armed Forces

During the weekly press briefing of the Ministry of the Armed Forces, the head of the industrial affairs and economic intelligence department of the DGA presented an initial assessment of the actions carried out in favor of the war economy. Alexandre Lahousse notably revealed the five projects underway to accelerate the production rate. Lighting.

 War economy: the 5 projects to “produce more and faster” | Ministry of the Armed Forces

Tags: France

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