Regions / Asia & Pacific
South Korea has continuously increased its military spending since 2000 at a rate higher than conventional explanations would expect. Its spending grew 200 percent for the past ten years, higher than would be warranted by the growth of its economy or government budget over the same period.
Japanese PM Hatoyama tries to sell Okinawa on a modified base relocation plan.
The Department of Defense plans to relocate 8,600 Marines from Okinawa (Japan) to Guam, provide additional live-fire training sites, expand Andersen Air Force Base, create berthing for a nuclear aircraft carrier, and erect a missile defense system on the island.
The recent military budget increases in East Asia are motivated by various factors -- flash point-driven, hedging strategy-driven, or governance-driven -- but they do necessarily trigger an arms race in the region.
Beijing is rapidly expanding its influence in the Middle East. Will Washington do anything more than watch?
In recent times, the Japanese business community has also demanded an amendment to Article 9 of the constitution for the promotion of military-civil integrated space development and an end to the ban on arms exports.
New elections are needed to resolve the escalating tensions in Thailand.
How much of an impact has North Korea's nuclear program had on the military spending of other major Northeast Asian states?
In the early 1990s, in the wake of the Soviet Union's collapse, the world was anticipating a "peace dividend" from the end of the cold war. In one part of the world, however, military spending was not slowing down.
Interpreting China's military expenditure has been a complicated issue with important regional implications. Although China publishes its official defense budget and provides justifications for increases in its military spending, most observers remain skeptical of the accuracy of the official figures and wary of the military modernization efforts. This skepticism has shaped the responses of other Asia-Pacific nations toward China's military modernization.