Vietnam is spending billions on Russian submarines and fighter jets. Calm down, Dick Cheney. Vietnam cares more about the prawn market than World War III. The real superpower fretting over this is China. China and Vietnam don’t get along so well (a point once missed by the best and brightest), thanks to a misunderstanding about 1,000 years of Chinese occupation and a few skirmishes since.

The two countries are now competing for energy resources (what else?) in their shared and disputed waters and may be looking to show a little muscle. It’s nothing to invade Pakistan over. — PZS

BBC:

Vietnam has signed billion-dollar contracts to buy submarines and fighter jets from Russia, Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung has announced in Moscow.

The deals make Vietnam one of the key clients of the Russian arms industry.

The weapons purchases come at a time when disputes over sovereignty are increasing in the South China Sea, which Vietnam calls the East Sea.

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