Shopaholic India

So now we know why I can shopping spree like a champion– it’s in my genes. (Thanks, 43 Seconds.)

According to the annual Conventional Arms Transfers to Developing Nations report (pdf)–widely considered the most comprehensive source on global weapons sales–India’s got so many shopping bags full of “tanks, submarines, combat aircraft, missiles and ammunition”, her arms are sore. ;)

India was the leading buyer of conventional arms among developing nations in 2004, a report for the US Congress says. The Congressional Research Service said Delhi agreed the transfer of $5.7bn in weapons, ahead of China. [Beeb]
India was also the leading developing world purchaser over the 1997-2004 period covered in the report, sealing 10% of all such arms agreements.[Beeb]

Yes, yes, the US is the biggest “weapons mall” of them all, with around a third of all contracts. It’s the mall of America, if you will. Oh wait, we already have one of those.

Keeping up with the Wongs’?

India negotiated $15.7bn in agreed transfers of conventional weapons between 1997 and 2004 to top the list.[Beeb]
China overtook India for the period 2001-2004 on the back of a big increase in defence budget, but India was back on top for 2004 alone.[Beeb]

Enlighten me, do you think this is a good thing to be “on top” of?

7 thoughts on “Shopaholic India

  1. HELL YEAH ITS A GOOD THING! we need the arms to fuel war against them commie bastards! and i dont wanna hear no hippy skippy talk about peace and all! arrrrhhh!

  2. Enlighten me, do you think this is a good thing to be “on top” of?

    Yes! I will answer it by drawing a parallel.

    Remember the Reagan build up! The usual suspects worried that this would end the world as we know it, destroy western civilization and make us all more evil! Instead, we are living in a post cold war world and I think all of us can agree a better place.

    India has been in a not so cold war since 1947 with our own terrorism promoting evil state. Deterence might work and ultimately prove to be a lot cheaper in the long run than appeasing this terrorist nation.

    And that other behemoth to the north is no friend of India either. If I remember, China is still way ahead of India as far as the total spend on military is concerned. The only way to control this “ambitious” neightbor is to stay close. So keep buying. Defense of India is important.

  3. While it certainly looks unseemly for a nation like India, where some 250-300 million live on a dollar a day to spend so much on armaments – keep in mind that no country became prosperous when it wasn’t secure.

    As a counter-example. for most of recorded history, Europeans spent most of their time slicing each other’s throats, because all nations are concrened about their security. After 1945, the U.S. guaranteed the security of Western Europe. So while young men from the U.S. were stationed in Europe, in a face off with the Soviets, the W. Europeans got to enjoy two-hour lunches and month long vacations.

    Japan and South Korea also benefited from American security guarantees. But India can depend on no one but itself.

    On a small-scale example – think of the inner cities in the U.S. Governments constantly provide tax incentives for companies to set up shop in poor sections of cities, but the results are uneven – cause businesses (like nations) are interested in security. Commerce (not of the black market variety) cannot flourish if people or nations feel insecure.

  4. Yes it is a good thing. A nation’s security is a Good Thing. We never achive parity between USA or China, but each of these countries will think at least 8 times before thinking of attacking or messing with India. And that can only be a good thing. Before we begin the whole wouldn’t this money be better spent on stopping hungry starving people, I should point you to another article on Sepia having to do with the idiotic Employment Guarantee Scheme. the best way to help those poor people is to create an environment where people can make money, freely, legally and without hindrance – that requires a reduction in regulation, not more government handouts, so no, this money would not be better spent in “poverty alleviation”. Every country has a right to its security, and the right to not be beat up by its fundamentalist, terrorist-sponsoring neighbour, or any other country for that matter. If it’s “right” for America to strike pre-empively against any country which may be part of the “axis of evil” it’s ok for India to pre-emptively defend itself from an potential troublemakers.

  5. indian government is more intrested in making peace with islamofascists than in developing the nation.commies are worse .the commies dream of turning india into something like north korea…..

    and yeah reagan is my my fav president.atleat he knew how to kick commie pinko ass.

  6. the fact that india leads the list of buyers is not bad. Nor is it good. The situation there caters itself to buying. The thing that would make the situation there completely good if, instead of buying, they are able to be self reliant. India pocesses the industry needed to make most of the things needed to be militarily self sufficient. All that it takes is the culture of dedication to research and development needed.

  7. It’s not a good thing. Most of our arms were of Russian and Eastern European make, they are now out dated. In the next ten years this figure will rise even more.