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Africa - Other | Asia - Other | China | Daily Rapid Fire | Japan | Official Reports

Rapid Fire May 18, 2012: Chinese Military Assessment

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Not a “heart” emoticon The US Department of Defense released its annual report [PDF] to Congress on Chinese military developments. Analysis of spending is pretty bare-bones: “Using 2011 prices and exchange rates, DoD estimates China’s total military-related spending for 2011 ranges between $120 billion and $180 billion.” The report is thankfully more detailed on capabilities. For context, earlier reports in this series from 2010 and 2011 [PDFs] estimated military spending at $150B and $160B respectively. Last month the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission stated that many observers are drawing false conclusions from fixating their rear view mirror. This comes as a good backdrop for recent news: * Do these capabilities now include naval VTUAVs? Bought from Austria?? * Japan to provide patrol ships to the Philippines. * Russia is considering fitting foreign weapons on export helicopters. * Coming next week: a NATO summit in Chicago where discussions on when to withdraw from Afghanistan, and what capabilities to sustain there in the long run, may prove contentious. * Meanwhile large chunks of northwestern Africa seem to be turning into the sort of safe haven for terrorists that the war in Afghanistan was meant to prevent. * An engineer at Picatinny […]

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