10 December 2005


"I keep on my desk under a glass a satellite photograph of the Korean peninsula taken at night. You can see very clearly that light covers most, if not all, of the peninsula’s southern half, below the demilitarized zone, reflecting a nation with energy, a thriving economy and a vibrant democracy. And then you look to the north of the demilitarized zone, where all you see is darkness -- except for a single pinprick of light in Pyongyang, the capital. The same people in the north and the south. The same resources in the north and the south. The difference is freedom -- political freedom and economic freedom."

JUNE 4, 2005, 9:00 AM

The Hon Donald Rumsfeld
US Secretary of Defense

...and some otehr noteworthy quotes from the same speech:
"The U.S. Congress requires that the U.S. Department of Defense report annually on China’s perceived military strategy and its military modernization. The Department’s 2005 report is scheduled to be released soon.

Among other things, the report concludes that China’s defense expenditures are much higher than Chinese officials have published. It is estimated that China’s is the third largest military budget in the world, and clearly the largest in Asia.

China appears to be expanding its missile forces, allowing them to reach targets in many areas of the world, not just the Pacific region, while also expanding its missile capabilities within this region. China also is improving its ability to project power, and developing advanced systems of military technology.

Since no nation threatens China, one must wonder:

* Why this growing investment?
* Why these continuing large and expanding arms purchases?
* Why these continuing robust deployments?"

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