Just a Headline

Jam2000000amTue, 27 Feb 2007 07:08:22 -080007 23, 2007

Venezuela Spending on Arms Soars to World’s Top Ranks

This is somewhat of a continuation off of last weeks blog about Chavez buying all the new military equipment.  This article in the New York Times, follows up on the last providing more commentary from several of the Venezuelan officials and their justification for stocking up on the arms. 

Venezuela’s arms spending has climbed to more than $4 billion in the past two years, transforming the nation into Latin America’s largest weapons buyer and placing it ahead of other major purchasers in international arms markets like Pakistan and Iran.

Looking throughout the article, I cant help but notice that Venezuela has bought around 100,000 Kalashnikov assault rifles from Russia and intends to open a Kalashnikov factory to produce more of the weapon.  What seems interesting to me, is the fact that Venezuela only has a standing army of roughly 34,000.  Now I realize that it is important to have a stockpile of weapons, but as I have mentioned in earlier blogs, what are the chances that some of these weapons may end up in the hands of people outside of the military.

Another tidbit that jumped out at me  is that Venezuela is also considering building a remotely piloted patrol aircraft with Iran.  Part of their reasoning and justification for constructing these planes is to ‘combat environmental destruction in Venezuela.’  That sounds relatively harmless…doesn’t it?


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