“Kim had met President Vladimir Putin and visited key military and technology sites, underscoring the countries’ deepening defense cooperation in the face of separate, intensifying confrontations with the West. U.S. and South Korean officials have said North Korea could provide badly needed munitions for Moscow’s war on Ukraine in exchange for sophisticated Russian weapons technology that would advance Kim’s nuclear ambitions.”
“Although depleted uranium is a byproduct of uranium enrichment, U.S. officials say the munitions are common and do not present a radioactive threat. They cite studies by the International Atomic Energy Agency, the United Nations’ nuclear watchdog, showing “the existence of depleted uranium residues dispersed in the environment does not pose a radiological hazard to the population of the affected regions.”
However, opponents such as the International Coalition to Ban Uranium Weapons say there are dangerous health risks, including cancer, from touching or ingesting depleted-uranium dust.”
“U.S. officials ultimately decided to send the munitions because they are considered the most effective way of arming U.S.-made Abrams tanks, according to a Defense Department official familiar with the plans. The first tranche of 10 Abrams will arrive in Ukraine in mid-September, after a group of Ukrainian soldiers finished a training program to use them last month, POLITICO first reported.”
“Cluster munitions — or dual-purpose improved conventional munitions (DPICMs), as they’re officially known — are haphazard and notoriously faulty. Once fired, they release dozens of bomblets in the air that spread out and saturate football-field- or city-block-size areas. The direction or targets for those bomblets can’t be controlled, and they don’t always immediately explode, turning into de facto land mines. For those reasons, they are particularly dangerous to civilians during war, but also long after a conflict ends.”
“Russia has imported more than $100 million-worth of drones from China so far this year — 30 times more than Ukraine. And Chinese exports of ceramics, a component used in body armor, increased by 69 percent to Russia to more than $225 million, while dropping by 61 percent to Ukraine to a mere $5 million, Chinese and Ukrainian customs data show.
“What is very clear is that China, for all its claims that it is a neutral actor, is in fact supporting Russia’s positions in this war,” said Helena Legarda, a lead analyst specializing in Chinese defense and foreign policy at the Mercator Institute for China Studies, a Berlin think tank.
Were China to cross the red line and sell weapons or military equipment to Russia, Legarda said she would expect the EU to enforce secondary sanctions targeting enablers of Putin’s war of aggression.”
“Jets, drones, cyber capabilities, and more.
It’s a significant list, and builds on an expanding military partnership. The US has partnered with India more and more in response to China’s rise, seeing New Delhi as a valuable counterweight. This is happening as India advances grievous human rights abuses against minorities, against journalists, and against political critics — all in contradiction of America’s stated values.
And yet this week, the White House is promoting a “next generation defense partnership” with India. This includes the co-production of cutting-edge technologies like jet engines and semiconductors, the prospect of new arms sales, and agreements that would allow the US to have its navy ships repaired in India. The country will also purchase 31 advanced drones from General Atomics in a deal that will cost some $3 billion. And the Pentagon and the Indian Ministry of Defense have established a new military-tech incubator called INDUS-X.
Experts point out that India under Modi increasingly does not share American values, and some of the advanced military technologies that the US is providing the country could be used against dissidents or journalists.
“If we’re just going to go full-on countering China with India as a realist approach to things, that can come back and bite us,” says Derek Grossman, a defense analyst at the RAND Corporation. “Because, as we saw during the Cold War, a lot of the dictators or semi-authoritarian regimes that we cozied up with, they were not our friends in the long run.””
“Britain is one of more than 100 countries who are signed up to the Convention on Cluster Munitions, which prohibits “the use, production, transfer and stockpiling of cluster munitions that cause unacceptable harm to civilians.””