China, Russia, India: US Has Its Work Cut Out
China Crowdsources Arms Smuggling to Procure Mil Tech
- Reuters investigates China’s military buildup in its many forms.
- From the DC-based Lexington Institute, on China’s belligerence:
“Defense experts use a simple formula to represent the severity of threats to national security: capabilities multiplied by intentions. The world has been watching China’s military buildup with growing concern while hoping that Beijing’s intentions remain peaceful. Unfortunately, this is not proving to be the case.”
- CNA conducted a joint workshop [PDF] on maritime security issues in East Asia with the Sea Lanes of Communication (SLOC) Study Group from Yonsei University in Seoul. They advocate the development of regional dispute resolution mechanisms. But in the South China Sea the Chinese have clearly adopted a “divide and conquer” approach by insisting on bilateral discussions rather than multilateral ones. They were easier to work with in the settlement of their land borders in Central Asia.
- Some good news: China’s chokehold on rare earths supplies, which used to worry the Pentagon, has been loosened by market dynamics. There are still gaps in the non-Chinese supply though.
Russian Media: Pravda Redux
- The assertively conservative Foreign Policy Initiative looks into the Russian government’s sudden announcement that it is replacing its RIA Novosti state news agency with a new organization to be helmed by an avowed propagandist.
- One front where Russia exercises its not-so-soft power at the moment is Ukraine, where pro-European protesters are at odds with President Viktor Yanukovych’s bowing to Russian money and energy.
US-India: Good Luck Meeting Your Export Targets
- To put American prospects in India on an even footing with post-Snowden chances in Brazil, India’s deputy consul general was recently arrested in New York city over charges of false visa allegations about her babysitter’s wages. Indian authorities are retaliating.
Meanwhile, in the United States…
- US Senator Tom Coburn [R-OK] released his annual “wastebook” [PDF] to denounce governmental excess. Some of the examples are truly egregious, but saying that leaving MRAPs in Afghanistan is pure waste seems a less clear cut case.
- 3 former Special Forces soldiers have pleaded guilty to charges of using inside bid information to win more than $50M in Army contracts in Afghanistan.
What’s Next for the Industry?
- Industry analysts probed by AviationWeek see a wave of small/mid-cap acquisitions next year in the wake of the pending federal budget deal.
- James Hasik at the Atlantic Council argues that Exelis’ spinoff of its services division is a smart move away from sprawling diversification.
- The Teal Group and Frost & Sullivan agree that the US military rotorcraft market is in for a steep decline.