ASPI suggests
17 Jan 2014|

Indonesian National Defense Force Marines look on as U.S. Marines from Company C, 1st Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment, Marine Corps Base Hawaii, Kaneohe Bay conduct live fire training during Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) Exercise 2012, July 21, 2012, at Pohakuloa Training Area, (PTA) Hawaii.

Welcome back to another wrap-up of suggested reading from the defence and security world. I’m currently in Jakarta so I’ll kick off with some Indonesia news.

The Indonesian military is set to get some short-range air defences under a new deal with Thales worth US$164 million. Thales will equip five Indonesian Army batteries with Starstreak missiles, ControlMaster200 radars and weapon coordination systems, lightweight multiple launchers and RapidRanger weapon launchers. It’s another step towards TNI’s goal of acquiring a Minimum Essential Force. More on the deal here.

Following on from a case of Australians fighting in Syria, Institute for Policy Analysis of Conflict (IPAC) director and terrorism expert Sidney Jones warns the effects of Indonesian jihadists fighting overseas. Specifically, she notes current terrorist acts are small-scale attacks like shootings and robberies but exposure to global jihad may be dangerous for Indonesia in the long-run.

Sticking with our region, CSIS’ Ernest Bower discusses latest developments and politics in Myanmar in this video.

For the nuclear energy wonks, SIPRI has a new report that argues a ‘one house’ approach to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) will create a more efficient body.

RSIS’ Zou Wentau looks at the implications of restructuring China’s maritime law enforcement agencies.

Lastly, analysts are urging the Pentagon to start making some tough choices about the US defence budget. According to the article, part of the problem is this:

Increases in the costs of benefits for personnel are devouring an ever-growing percentage of the budget. Trying to reform these benefits has always been politically sensitive because of fear in Congress that it might appear to be abandoning the troops.

For more, read here.

Natalie Sambhi is an analyst at ASPI and acting executive editor of The Strategist. Image courtesy of Flickr user AFN-Pacific Hawaii New Bureau Hawaii.