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Is Asia Moving Towards Arms Race?

Updated: 2012-04-25 12:00:00 KST
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Is Asia Moving Towards Arms Race?

North Korea intensified its rhetoric against South Korea on Monday threatening to take so-called "special actions" to turn parts of Seoul into ashes.
On April 13th, Pyeongyang failed to launch a long-range rocket into space.
Now many experts believe a North Korean nuclear test is imminent.
With all this happening, South Korea's Defense Ministry last week unveiled its latest long-range missile in a 40-second video.
The military build-up is not only happening on the Korean Peninsula.
China and India have long been locked in an arms race, although neither side admits it.
Last week, India successfully test fired its Agni-5 ballistic missile giving a potent sign of the country's growing nuclear capabilities.
China is reportedly already modernizing its own medium and intermediate-range missile systems.
The head of the Woodrow Wilson Center in WashingtonJane Harman, spoke to Arirang News.


[Interview : Jane Harman, President & CEO
Woodrow Wilson Intl. Center for Scholars] "I think the Indian missile test was ill-timed and even though India says it was all about China and Pakistan, it sent an unmistakable signal to North Korea and Iran that India is testing and getting away with it, why should they have to, not test, and that's destabilizing. I don't know about an arms race, but this activity is worrisome."

Whether this is a new arms race is still debatable, with analysts differing about whether it represents a threat or not.
But the lack of transparency over China's defense spending and the recent activities by North Korea are certainly causing some to worry.
Kim Han-ul, Arirang News.


Reporter : chkim@arirang.co.kr

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