Cohesive Examination of Arms Sales Term Paper

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But evidence indicates the true motive for the increased arms sales since the dismantling of the former Soviet Union is not about peacekeeping at all but about the bottom dollar.

According to the annual assessment, the United States supplied $8.1 billion worth of weapons to developing countries in 2005 -- 45.8% of the total and far more than second-ranked Russia with 15% and Britain with a little more than 13% (Bender, 2006)."

Arms sales (agreements) ranked by Supplier, 1998-2005 (in constant 2005 million U.S. Dollars and percentage of world sales).


Total Dollars

Percentage of total sales


Conventional Arms Transfers to Developing Nations,

Report for Congress, U.S. Congressional Research Service, Library of Congress, October 23, 2006. (Dollar values are constant 2005 dollars)

Each country shown as follows:

developing countries industrialized countries

If you are viewing this table on another site, please see further details and context.

United out of 97,144 out of 41,600 out of 30,000 out of 17,000

United out of 14,900 out of 9,100 out of 5,600

Other out of 33,800 out of 17,300

The Executive Director of the Nonpartisan Arms Control Association, Daryl Kimball has been quoted as saying the U.S. And other nations are no longer selling arms for the self-defense of the nations buying them, but instead the arms are being sold for selfish reasons which will haunt the nations that sold them someday (Bender, 2006).

Another seldom discussed reason that the arms sales have seen such a dramatic increase since the collapse of the Soviet Union has been the ability to control the nations doing the buying (Washburn, 1999).

One example is Turkey. The U.S. is the main arms supplier to Turkey, therefore if it doesn't agree with something Turkey is doing it can threaten to stop selling arms to the nation or even more effective threaten to sell arms to the nation's enemies (Washburn, 1999).

Before the dismantling of the Soviet Union the U.S. always had the upper hand with developing nations by pointing to the Soviet Union and hinting if the U.S. did not protect the developing nation the Soviet Union might take it over. The developing nation would do whatever the U.S. wanted to prevent that from happening and to keep the U.S. As a protective ally. Once the Soviet Union was dismantled it was no longer a viable threat, even to the underdeveloped nations of the world and many of the stronger nations lost that control.

Selling arms to the developing nations provides the stronger countries with that power again because they can threaten to stop the sales or to sell to the enemy if the country does not do as it is told.

Given its role as Turkey's principal arms supplier, the United States has enormous potential leverage over Turkish behavior on critical issues such as respect for human rights and the pursuit of negotiated settlements to the 15-year civil war with the PKK and the 25-year-old division of Cyprus (Washburn, 1999)."

The arms sales between nations started out to help underdeveloped nation protect themselves from "bully nations" including the former Soviet Union. Once the threat was gone however, nations continued to sell arms to the developing nations to turn a profit and to find a new method of control. Since the collapse of the Soviet Union there has been a dramatic increase in arms sales around the world. It is time to stop the cycle before the U.S. And other nations become the bully nations through the power of selling arms.


Bender, Brian (2006) U.S. is top purveyor on weapons sales (Accessed 3-22-07) list grow to unstable areas by Bryan Bender, Globe Staff

Lewis, James (2005) Arms Control Today. LOOKING BACK: Multilateral Arms Transfer Restraint: The Limits of Cooperation

Roberts, Tom (1999) New battles brew over defense spending, arms sales.

National Catholic Reporter

Russia revisits Cold War policy (Accessed 3-24-07)

Washburn, Jennifer (1999) Arming Repression:

U.S. Arms Sales to Turkey During the Clinton Administration

Joint Report of the World Policy Institute and the Federation of American Scientists

Whitelaw, Kevin (1997) it's a growth business again: arms market. (arms sales increased 8% in 1996, totalling $40 billion; Saudi Arabia was the biggest buyer)(Brief Article)

U.S. News & World Report

____(1991) WHY INCREASE ARMS SALES? The Record (Bergen County, NJ)[continue]

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