A few defense and security links, curated for Flashpoints readers:
Japan’s Maritime Self-Defense Force admitted Wednesday to losing a $5 million unmanned underwater vehicle (UUV) last year. The UUV was lost during a seabed study and a nine-day search mission yielded nothing. According to The Japan Times, the MSDF chose to reveal the loss of the UUV now because it judged that there would be on impact on the environment. The MSDF notes that the UUV was lost around 2 p.m. on November 30 in the Tsugaru Strait between Aomori and Hokkaido. “The vehicle was being used to survey the underwater terrain as well as water currents and temperatures,” according to one official.
Pakistan’s National Security Advisor Sartaj Aziz, at a strategic dialogue with the United States, told his interlocutors that “You don’t love us as much as you love India.” Aziz’s remarks additionally confirmed that Pakistan’s foreign policy outlook was being driven by its fixation on perceived security threats emerging from India instead of terrorism within its borders. Aziz noted that Pakistan felt that the United States was not adequately conveying Pakistani concerns to India and instead courting India entirely independently of its alliance with Pakistan. Aziz’s remarks reinforce the ice that the U.S.-Pakistan alliance is increasingly fraying along incompatible national interests on both sides. Aziz’s remarks come soon after former Defense Secretary Robert Gates’ memoir revealed that he did not consider Pakistan an ally at all.
The U.S. Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics told Congress that the Department of Defense expects China to export its Chengdu J-20 fifth-generation twin-engine stealth fighter.
A new publication by the Center for Strategic and International Studies titled “South Asia Regional Dynamics and Strategic Concerns” examines the likely U.S. position in South Asia following its drawdown in Afghanistan. The authors propose a framework for U.S. policy in the region that takes the diverse interests of India, Pakistan, and China into account.
Bangladesh has ordered 24 Russia-made Yak-130 light fighters in an $800 million deal, according to a report by RIA Novosti. Bangladesh paid for the deal with a Russian loan, according to the director of Russia’s state arms exporter Rosoboronexport.
A blog post over at the Federation of American Scientist’s FAS Strategic Security Blog examines the possibility of disaffected Chechen groups using radioactive materials during the Sochi Olympics. Chechen groups have employed the strategy in the past. The author concludes “Although there is a potential threat to the Sochi Olympics, the addition of radioactive material to the conventional threats to the Games must be understood not to add very much in actual threat of harm to people in Sochi. Russian efforts to counter any threat need to focus not only on preventing any use of an RDD, but also need to focus on how to deal with the public should an RDD be used or threatened to be used.”