World

July 2, 2012

News Briefs July 2, 2012

U.S. Supreme Court strikes down Stolen Valor law

The U.S. Supreme Court has struck down a federal law making it a crime to lie about having received the Medal of Honor and other prized military awards.

The court voted 6-3 June 28 in favor of Xavier Alvarez, a former local elected official in California who falsely claimed he was a decorated war veteran.

Alvarez had pleaded guilty to violating a 2006 law that was adopted with the U.S. at war in Afghanistan and Iraq and aimed at people making phony claims of heroism in battle.

The court, in a judgment written by Justice Anthony Kennedy, ordered that his conviction be thrown out. AP

 

Japan, South Korea sign 1st military pact since World War II

Japan and South Korea have agreed to share intelligence in their first joint military pact since World War II.

Japan’s Cabinet approved the pact June 29. It will allow sharing intelligence in such areas as missile defense, North Korea’s nuclear weapons program and other regional security matters. It has already been approved by South Korea and was signed in Tokyo later in the day.

The pact reflects mutual concerns that more cooperation is needed to enhance security readiness, and is seen as a breakthrough in ties between the two neighbors.

Japan ruled Korea as a colony for several decades until the end of World War II in 1945, and Seoul has often been wary of Japan’s postwar military development. AP




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Constitutional questions grow over Japan PM’s military plans

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s pledge to the U.S. to increase Japan’s military contribution internationally is facing more questions about potential conflicts with the nation’s pacifist Constitution. Opposition lawmakers demanded answers from key Cabinet members at a hearing June 10, after three prominent constitution experts–including one chosen by Abe’s rul...
 
 

Japan, Philippines to talk about transfer of military goods

Japan and the Philippines agreed June 4 to start talks on transferring Japanese military hardware and technology to the Southeast Asian country trying to upgrade its defenses. Tokyo eased restrictions on exports of military equipment and technology last year as part of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s push to expand Japan’s military role abroad. Under a...
 
 

U.S., India move forward on joint military research projects

After several years of bureaucratic delays, the U.S. and India are moving ahead with two joint research projects for the military that officials hope will set the stage for greater defense cooperation in the years ahead. Defense Secretary Ash Carter and Indian Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar signed a defense agreement June 4, as part of...
 

 

Saudi Arabia becomes world’s biggest defense importer

Saudi Arabia has passed India to become the world’s biggest arms importer last year as concerns about Iran’s ambitions increase tensions in the Middle East. Saudi spending rose 54 percent to $6.5 billion last year, while India imported $5.8 billion, according to data released Sunday by IHS, a leading analyst of the global arms trade....
 
 

China defense spending to grow 10.1 percent in 2015

China said March 5 it will boost defense spending by 10.1 percent, a smaller rise than last year but in line with large annual increases that have drawn concern among the country’s neighbors over Beijing’s military and territorial ambitions. Beijing says the higher spending is needed to modernize equipment and improve conditions for the 2.3...
 
 

Kremlin pursues military modernization despite economic woes

Hundreds of new Russian aircraft, tanks and missiles are rolling off assembly lines. Russian jets roar through European skies under NATO’s wary eye. Tens of thousands of troops take part in war games showing off the military’s readiness for all-out war. The muscle flexing suggests that Russia’s economic woes so far are having no impact...
 




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