Global Post | 9/21/2009 12:00:00 AM
Is South America in an arms race?
Sept 21--Major arms purchases stoke fears of flaring regional tensions on an increasingly militarized continent.
Brazil, Venezuela and Colombia in particular appear determined to prove they won't be pushed around by their neighbors and are vigorously defending their military buildup.
There is no question that South America is on arms spree, with major purchases by Venezuela and Brazil stoking fears over the possible consequences of flaring regional tensions on an increasingly militarized continent.
South American countries increased military spending by 30 percent from 2007 to total of more than $51 billion in 2008, according to Nueva Mayoria, a Buenos Aires-based center for sociopolitical studies.
Venezuela's oil revenues, Colombia's millions of dollars in annual military aid and Brazil's commodities exports are helping finance their military ambitions.
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