Will soaring US defense budget spark a new international arms race?
By CGTN’s The Point
Russia has been consistently decreasing its defense spending, which is now 10 percent lower than in 2015.
In a sharp contrast, the US reached new heights in military spending after US President Donald Trump signed the National Defense Authority Act last month, authorizing 700 billion US dollars in national defense spending for this upcoming year.
“The US Department of Homeland Security’s annual budget is roughly the entire budget of Russia’s military budget,” stated Douglas Smith, former assistant secretary of US Department of Homeland Security.
Smith added, “I’m not quite sure what President Trump is thinking, but he seems to reverse orders of what President Reagan did against Mr. Gorbachev back in the heightened arms race. The one difference being Russia seems to have no interest in entering into an arms race.”
With the US approval of the largest US commercial sale of lethal defensive weapons to Ukraine since 2014 and the Baltic States beefing up their military spending, how will the world respond to this shifting balance of military investment and influence?
Alexander Nekrassov, former Kremlin adviser, strongly disagrees with this US military decision, saying “The way the Western countries, the Americans especially, are behaving, basically creates a situation in the Ukraine where a large war can break out at any time in Europe.”
“Putin might be a very smart politician and diplomat,” Nekrassov added, “but he will have a hell of a time keeping his generals intact, and the population generally when they see their brothers dying in Ukraine, killed by American weapons. This is a recipe for an explosion, for a problem when terrorism can reach a much bigger and dangerous level.”
The Point with Liu Xin is a 30-minute current affairs program on CGTN. It airs weekdays at 9:30 p.m. BJT (1330GMT), with rebroadcasts at 5:30 a.m. (2130GMT) and 10:30 a.m. (0230GMT).