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Speaker(s): Professor Leif Wenar
Chair: Dr Margot Salomon

Recorded on 1 March 2016 at Hong Kong Theatre, Clement House

Natural resources empower the world's most coercive men. Autocrats like Putin and the Saudis spend oil money on weapons and repression. ISIS and Congo's militias spend resource money on atrocities and ammunition. For decades resource-fueled authoritarians and extremists have forced endless crises on the West - and the ultimate source of their resource money is us, paying at the petrol station and the mall.

In this lecture, Leif Wenar will talk about his new book, Blood Oil, which goes behind the headlines in search of the hidden global rule that puts shoppers into business with the men of blood - and discovers an ancient law that once licensed the slave trade, apartheid and genocide. The abolition of this rule marked some of humanity's greatest triumphs - yet the rule zombies on in today's multi-trillion dollar resource trade, enriching tyrants, warlords and terrorists worldwide.

By our own deepest principles, over half of the world's traded oil is stolen. Blood Oil shows how the West can lead a peaceful global revolution by finally ending its dependence on authoritarian oil, conflict minerals and other stolen resources. Upgrading world trade will make us more secure at home, more trusted abroad, and better able to solve urgent problems like climate change. Blood Oil shows how citizens, consumers and leaders can act today to avert tomorrow's crises - and to create a more united human future.

Leif Wenar (@LeifWenar) is Chair of Philosophy and Law at King's College London. He has been a Visiting Professor at Princeton and Stanford and a Fellow of the Carnegie Council Program in Justice and the World Economy.

Margot Salomon is an Associate Professor in the Law Department and the Centre for the Study of Human Rights where she directs the multidisciplinary Laboratory for Advanced Research on the Global Economy (Lab).

The Centre for the Study of Human Rights at LSE (@LSEHumanRights) is a trans-disciplinary centre of excellence for international academic research, teaching and critical scholarship on human rights.

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