Taiwan military says China preparing for possible attack

China is actively building up its armed forces and they would be strong enough by 2020 to launch an invasion of Taiwan, a military report said Tuesday.

Despite closer political ties, China is “continuing to accumulate large-scale war capabilities, with the threat of a cross-strait military conflict continuing to exist”, according to the island’s 2015 National Defence Report.

The mainland’s annual military spending has grown on average by double-digit rates over the past decade, second only to the United States, it said. Continue reading

While Iran Receives Billions From Lifted Sanctions, the U.S. Military Is Cut by Billions

The fact that there will be no U.S. aircraft carrier in the Middle East this fall is an interesting development that is worth noting. It would be the perfect time for Iran to launch an attack on Israel and for Obama to duck his obligation of protecting the tiny Jewish state. Ironically enough, the Iranian nuclear deal forces America into defending the Persian nation.

 

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The Iranian Army (Photo: Tima/Reuters/Newscom)

 

There are many reasons to think that the Iran nuclear deal is an awful agreement. One of those being the $150 billion (or so) that Iran will receive as sanctions are lifted.

In 2011, President Obama signed the Budget Control Act (BCA) into law which was an attempt to rein in federal spending. While federal spending must be curtailed, unfortunately the BCA did little to control the real drivers of federal spending (the entitlement programs) and instead imposed disproportionate cuts on the national security budget. These cuts were backed by a mechanism called sequestration, which automatically cuts every budget line if spending is too high. Continue reading

PLA is world’s third most powerful military: report

S [sic] military spending in 2014 was estimated at US$612 billion, which surpassed all other 125 countries on the list. Its ground force alone counts 8,300 tanks, 25,700 armored personnel carriers, 17,000 artillery pieces and 1,300 multiple rocket launching systems. Russia’s defense budget last year was about US$76 billion. A Russian military expert told Moscow’s Vzglyad that Russia however has some advantages the United States does not have.

Continue reading

Sweden faces military build-up call after submarine claims

Media reports of a suspected Russian submarine in Swedish waters could pressure the country to spend more on its military, expert says

While Swedish citizens enjoy a high standard of living and efficient national social welfare systems, they could face demands to increase spending on the military following widespread media coverage of allegations a Russian submarine may be in waters off the Stockholm archipelago, an expert says.

Many critics have questioned the veracity and timing of speculation a Russian submarine could be hiding in Swedish territorial waters at a time of heightened global military tensions under the US-led “war on terror”, and also point out it is common knowledge that most developed nations operate fleets of military submarines around the world.

But, in the wake of the allegations, Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven has raised the prospect of taxpayers increasing military spending, which currently accounts for one percent of the country’s Gross Domestic Product, a modest ratio of national income compared to its European neighbors. Continue reading

Russia’s Military Is Back

Earlier this year, in an address delivered on the day devoted to the “defenders of the Fatherland,” the Russian president proclaimed: “Ensuring Russia has a reliable military force is the priority of our state policy. Unfortunately, the present world is far from being peaceful and safe. Long obsolete conflicts are being joined by new, but no less difficult, ones. Instability is growing in vast regions of the world.”

This is not empty talk. The rhetoric has been matched by a concurrent allocation of resources; Russia is now engaged in its largest military buildup since the collapse of the Soviet Union more than two decades ago, with major increases in defense spending budgeted each year to 2020. Putin has pushed for this program even over the objections of some within the Kremlin who worried about costs and the possible negative impact on Russian prosperity; opposition to the expansion of military spending was one of the reasons the long-serving Finance Minister Aleksei Kudrin left the cabinet two years ago.

The rest of the world is taking notice. Continue reading

Persian Gulf states ‘unable to protect themselves’

Despite massive spending on Western weapons, the Arab monarchies of the Persian Gulf are “unable to secure themselves from any external threat” — meaning Iran — and are running up huge public and foreign debt, a Gulf think tank says.

Omar al-Shehabi, director of the Gulf Center for Development Policies in Kuwait, said that even though the defense expenditure of the six Gulf Cooperation Council states is the highest in the world, exceeding the combined military spending of Israel and Britain, they still have to “rely on Western countries to provide military protection and security.” Continue reading

Intelligence community: U.S. out as sole superpower by 2030

A new report by the intelligence community projects that the United States will no longer be the world’s only superpower by 2030.

“Global Trends 2030: Alternative Worlds” — prepared by the office of the National Intelligence Council of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence — projects that the “unipolar” world that emerged after the fall of the Soviet Union will not continue. Continue reading

China boosts defense budget 11 percent after U.S. “pivot”

China’s military spending is the second highest in the world, after the United States. While some naively call it a distant second, they don’t consider that this budget does not not include items such as research and development or foreign weapons procurement, to name a few out of many. The true budget is most likely double, or more.

The increase announced by parliament spokesman Li Zhaoxing will bring official outlays on the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) to 670.3 billion yuan ($110 billion) for 2012, after a 12.7 percent increase last year and a near-unbroken string of double-digit rises across two decades.

Beijing’s public budget is widely thought by foreign experts to undercount its real spending on military modernization, which has unnerved Asian neighbors and drawn repeated calls from Washington for China to share more about its intentions.

Full article: China boosts defense budget 11 percent after U.S. “pivot” (Reuters)

China defence budget to double over 5 years

China’s defence budget will double between 2011 and 2015 and outstrip the combined spending of all other key defence markets in the Asia-Pacific region, global research group IHS said Tuesday.

China’s defence budget stood at $119.8 billion last year and will rise to $238.2 billion in 2015, marking a combined annual growth rate of 18.75 percent during the period, the US-based IHS said in a forecast.

The 2015 figure exceeds the combined total of the next 12 biggest defence budgets in the region, forecast to hit $232.5 billion, and will be almost four times second-placer Japan’s defence spending that year, it added.

Full article: China defence budget to double over 5 years (Defence Talk)