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Japan's ambition to play a larger role on the world stage and address the security problems posed by a rising China have led Tokyo to undertake institutional, policy, and defense reforms. Given Japan's budgetary restraints, however, it is unclear whether its resources can match its strategic ambitions.
Will the election of Prime Minister Narendra Modi last month with the strongest mandate of any Indian leader in 30 years jumpstart much-needed reforms? The answer will help determine whether India begins to fulfill its vaunted potential as a U.S. strategic partner in Asia and beyond.
With U.S. defense budgets declining and defense firms increasingly looking overseas to ramp up sales, one would think that India — a democracy in Asia with one of that largest militaries in the world in desperate need of modernization — would be the center of gravity for U.S. defense industry.
The state of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization's (NATO's) land forces is something of a paradox. Although the alliance has no equal in terms of its gross domestic product, commands a wealth of human and social capital, and boasts the world's largest aggregate defense sector, NATO's land forces in particular have lost ground when it comes to their overall combat capacities.
The growing gap between what the nation demands of the military and what its capacity, capability and readiness will allow, thanks to reduced budgets, will eventually lead to unacceptable outcomes and consequences.