Thoughts on the Middle East, History and Religion
Posted on 01/04/2012 by Juan Cole
courtesy Ben Adler @ Reuters
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I would have to see really detailed evidence to believe that China’s military spending has increased 484% in 4 years to $400 billion. This sounds like the trumped-up figures the CIA used to put out for the USSR.
Firstly, the yuan has appreciated against the US $.
A lot of Chinese military units are fronts for arms businesses, and you can’t rely on a Chinese general to not sell his troops’ own guns to foreigners. How do you determine the budget when so much money is coming and going?
Mostly I don’t believe it because I’m sure with their labor costs and our staggering MIC corruption that the Chinese would be able to buy as much from their $400 billion as we get with our $800 billion. They’re not close. They’re buying cheap anti-ship missiles instead of carrier groups. Their strategic nuclear arsenal is tiny. They don’t bear the cost of foreign bases in 130 countries. They’re not having to replace materiel losses from recent wars. I approve of all this, precisely because it should be vastly cheaper than $400 billion a year. They don’t even have the air force and navy of France or Britain.
Where’s the Ohio-class SSBMs? Where’s the 9-digit-cost stealth bombers? Where’s the crashing VTOLs?
If this is a new neo-con lie campaign, we ought to nip it in the bud with some logic.
Okay, I checked out globalsecurity.org. The problem with their numbers is that they’re using purchasing parity to quadruple the official Chinese military budget. Thing is, if you buy such a ratio, then you are saying that everything in China is 4 times bigger than stated, including wages, which means that the value of China’s GNP is actually twice that of the US!
You can’t compare budgets when all military spending is corrupt. You have to count the toys.
Might want to check these numbers, Juan. By my count, the chart is WAY inflated. BBC reports that China’s own number for 2011 expenditures is 601.1B Yuan – a 12.7% increase over 2010, but still only $95.5B at today’s exchange rate. SIPRI, which I would consider perhaps more objective than Global Security, estimates Chinese military spending at $119 B in 2010 compared to the US at $698B.
And don’t forget, the US buries a lot of its military expenditures in places like the energy dept (nukes) and most intel budgeting is black. Nor do these numbers include major military operations (wars) which are funded by supplemental spending bills – like, say, the whole IrAfPak fiasco. (Which Brown University estimates ‘conservatively’ at $3 – 4T. As in Trillion.)
BTW, SIPRI estimates Iran’s total military expenditures at a bit over $8B in 2010, plus another $5.2B for the IRGC. (Which Iran keeps off the books when reporting its own military expenditures.
Zbignew Brzezinski says that China’s currennt leadership knows that it’s success depends on a gradual redistribution of power, not a sudden collapse of America. China will be a still be a devoloping state for decades. Even by 2025, no single power will be ready to play the role of leader of a new globally cooperative world order. Read “After America” by ZB in new Foreign Policy. If the US wants help create a workable new order, it needs to come up with better ideas than bombing Iran.
“US sees Iranian Military Spending as Threat
When you’re a rogue nation you see everything and everybody as a threat.
Iran has a bazaar mentality in their military spending… and with all these sanctions they are careful where they spent money…If US continues to drop their technologies in the Iranian hands as they have been with several drones and missiles in the past then I can guarantee you they will save lots of money on R&D and will start producing these hardware like Chinese have been copying the Russian hardware.
What Iran probably does is transfer the technology to China in exchange for future results. Iran claims to build anti-ship weapons that sure look like something China would build and sell. Hey, no one complained when Israel and South Africa shared a-bomb technology!
In the above chart on world military spending, we have the following statement: “The US still outspends China by nearly two to one.”
Perhaps I am missing something, but the figures on China appear to be wrong. China’s spending (as a percentage of US) is probably much lower than this. This is from a 2011 SIPRI report:
“The USA has increased its military spending by 81 per
cent since 2001, and now accounts for 43 per cent of the
global total, six times its nearest rival China.”
link to sipri.org
Worried about Iran’s military spending? Wow!!!
What about the US militarfy spending that is so high it is baankrupting the nation.
Get serious!!! We are the irrational terrorists of all history. We and israel
It seems inevitable that the US is going to bomb Iran no matter what and it is necessary for Iran to protect its people and resources.
On the subject of zulm, and balance, here’s a little snippet, with comments that ought to remind us of its immanence and omnipresence and seeming omnipotence:
link to youtube.com
And then there’s this, also with illuminating comments:
To the person (or persons) who figures out a way to overcome the mindsets that the comments so charmingly limn ought to go the keys to the kingdom.
Not much danger of that happening, of course. The way things are is obviously too much darn fun.
“US sees Iranian Military Spending as Threat”
How’s about switching that around to:
“Iran sees U.S. Military Spending as Threat”
Makes more sense since Iran has not militarily invaded Any country since it became a republic decades ago. By serious contrast, during that same time the U.S. has militarily invaded how many countries? How many illegal U.S. invasions and occupations are on-going today? How many countries that have not hurt the U.S. (including Iran) is obombomb planning to invade this year?
Answer those questions and you may arrive at a logical but disastrous conclusion that shows the second article title is the more correct one.
I have been trying to wrap my head around U.S. military spending for a while now.
17-21 intelligence agencies, veterans affairs, energy (nukes), portions of immigration, interest payments of the military portion of national debt, international exchange rates, as a % of national budget, hidden unpublished (black) budgets, plus we don’t really know how many military bases we have.
Can anyone list 4 or 5 books / journals that do a good job of the number crunching ?
There’s a reason China increased their spending.
They’ve seen our bellicose attempts to “extend hegemony over global energy resources” as a threat to their national security. WHO COULD BLAME THEM? We’ve, at one time, been at war with 12 nations this year.
In 2007 the USA spent as much on militarism as the REST of the WORLD combined. That is astonishing. That the Corporate Media never thought to tell the American People is astonishing. That no mainstream politician thought maybe we could spend a bit less is astonishing. But the media and the politicians work for the same backers.
Its time that the people of the world rise up against their leaders who uniformly support the rich elite and War Profiteering over the interests of their own citizens.
I guess any discussion on what China’s military spending or Iran’s military spending really means degenerates into is: Intentions. Which is the same crap we wasted the Cold War on. We can slice the numbers six ways from Sunday, but we will always refuse to factor ourselves into their equation. No sane and moral people can see America as a threat. Anyone who refuses to accept American hegemony is the new Hitler. Blah blah blah.
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