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Asia’s arms race risks spinning out of control

CNN, January 15, 2023

Seoul, South KoreaCNN — 

It’s an arms race bigger than anything Asia has ever seen – three major nuclear powers and one fast-developing one, the world’s three biggest economies and decades-old alliances all vying for an edge in some of the world’s most contested land and sea areas.

In one corner are the United States and its allies Japan and South Korea. In another corner, China and its partner Russia. And in a third, North Korea.

With each wanting to be one step ahead of the others, all are caught in a vicious circle that is spinning out of control. After all, one man’s deterrence is another man’s escalation…………….

The visit of Japanese leaders to Washington over the past week only served to highlight the point. On Friday, fresh from a meeting with US President Joe Biden, Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida expressed his concern over China’s military activities in the East China Sea and the launch of ballistic missiles over Taiwan that landed in waters near Japan in August………………….

according to North Korea and China, it is Japan who is the aggressor. They have seen Tokyo pledge recently to double its defense spending while acquiring weapons capable of hitting targets inside Chinese and North Korean territory. And their alleged concerns will only have grown with the announcement just days ago of plans for new US Marine deployments on Japan’s southern islands, including new mobile anti-ship missiles meant to thwart any first strike from Beijing.

To the US and Japan, such moves are about deterrence; to Beijing, they are escalation.

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January 15, 2023 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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