Mutual Assured Spending: US and China Military Build-Up

Toronto Sun columnist Eric Margolis suggests the US is being less than straightforward in its criticisms of Chinese :

The Pentagon has just warned that China’s 17.6% increase in its 2008 military budget “threatens the stability of Asia.”China’s official military budget is $58.8 billion, but the real figure is estimated at around $110 billion. Even so, Washington’s warning was pretty rich coming from the sole superpower that spends 10 times more on its military than China — a nation with four times the U.S. population.

American Defence Secretary Robert Gates unblushingly accused China of “lack of transparency” in concealing major defence programs. Talk about the pot calling the kettle black. Some $200-250 billion of secret “black” projects are hidden in the Pentagon’s trillion-dollar budget and those of other departments.

Washington’s constant warnings about Cuba, Syria, Iran, Venezuela and North Korea make it look like a spinster terrified by a mouse. The combined military spending of those nations is a paltry $10 billion. The U.S. and its closest allies account for two-thirds of the world’s military spending. Trying to keep up with the West militarily drove the old Soviet Union to bankruptcy.

The U.S. spends more on wars in Afghanistan and Iraq than Russia and China do on defence.

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