Caterpillar manufactures and provides bulldozers and civil engineering tools. Caterpillar materials are used for civilian projects, such as mining and construction, but also for military operations.
Caterpillar provides the Israeli army with bulldozers.
Caterpillar tools have been used in demolitions of Palestinians’ houses in the occupied territory, in the construction of the separation wall and settlements on Palestinian land, in military incursions and as weapons. The Israeli army has used unmanned D9 bulldozers (Black Thunder) in the Dec 2008 attacks in Gaza, and has been using an unmanned version of the company’s smaller tools (Front Runner) specially developed for urban warfare.
An Israeli military commander referred to Caterpillar bulldozers as “the key weapon” in its military occupation of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. (Alon, Ben David ‘Israel-Double Jeopardy,’ Janes Defence Weekly, 17/11/04)
Caterpillar Inc., is a multinational corporation based in the US and has several production units all over the world. Caterpillar Belgium produces hydraulic diggers and dispensers, cylinders and other parts. It is the second biggest production unit of Caterpillar in the world. The production site in Charleroi employs more then 4.700 people and invests tens of millions of Euro’s each year in the modernisation of its installations.
The company’s sole representative in Israel, ITE of Zoko Enterprises, is responsible for retrofitting the tools, as well as for ongoing maintenance and operations, including during military operations.
According to WhoProfits, Zoko has been involved in the development and supply of specially designed unmanned military D9 Buldozers (Dawn Thunder), based on Technion (Israel Institute of Technology) design and used in Gaza during the Dec 2008 attacks. It is similarly involved in a joint project with Ta’as – Israel Military Industries to design an armoured military vehicle based on a vehicle of Tatra (Wildcat). Other heavy mechanical equipment, truck and armoured vehicles by Caterpillar, Terex, International and Tatra were supplied by this company and used in the construction of the separation wall and checkpoints and in the expansion of the settlements.
Caterpillar Sales to Israel Violate Caterpillar’s Own Code of Conduct.
In addition to international law, Caterpillar’s own Code of Business Conduct prohibits the irresponsible sale of their equipment.
Caterpillar’s Code of Business Conduct says,
“Caterpillar accepts the responsibilities of global citizenship. Wherever we conduct business or invest our resources around the world, we know that our commitment to financial success must also take into account social priorities.”
Caterpillar Defends Its Sale of Weaponized Bulldozers
In response to letters from activists, Human Rights Watch, and the UN Special Rapporteur to Food, Cat CEO James Owens wrote that Caterpillar has “neither the legal right nor the ability to monitor and police individual use of that equipment.”
In a Caterpillar statement on the Middle East, they said “we believe any comments on the political conflict in the region are best left to our governmental leaders who have the ability to impact action and advance the peace process.”
Caterpillar Belgium received an unexpected visit from the TAG Inspectors and TAG Action Team.
Read the REPORT about their intervention.
Address Caterpillar Belgium
Avenue des Etats Unis 1
071 25 11 11