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Arms Race Explodes as Neighbors Try to Counter China

Southeast Asia nations are on a weapons buying spree, reports Lindsay Murdoch for the Sydney Morning Herald, with their spending totaling more than US$25 billion last year. South Korea, China, the US, Russia, France, UK, Sweden and Japan all made sales; purchases include fighter jets and submarines. “For decades, much of south-east Asia spent little on weapons except guns and tanks to respond to internal threats,” reports Murdoch. “But they are now building their defence capabilities amid tensions over territorial claims in the South China Sea and other squabbles that underscore the role of the East Asia Summit.” Carl Thayer of the Australian Defence Force Academy at the University of New South Wales warns that the escalation could destabilize the region. The region spends less than 13 other countries; the biggest spenders in 2012 include the US which spent 28 times as much, China more than five times as much and Russia three times, according to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute. The world is unaccustomed to Southeast Asia investing so heavily in defense. – YaleGlobal

Arms Race Explodes as Neighbors Try to Counter China

Southeast Asia is on a global shopping spree, buying arms and defense equipment; an analysts suggests the investments could destabilize the region
Lindsay Murdoch
The Sydney Morning Herald, 14 December 2012
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Source:The Sydney Morning Herald
Rights:Copyright © 2012 Fairfax Media