The right to defense
The efforts of Bangladesh to acquire sophisticated military equipment and forge arms deals with the U.S. are being looked at with suspicion by many analysts. They seem to think that Bangladesh is amassing weapons for no reason at all as there is no threat to its sovereignty and security. They believe that Bangladesh’s threat perceptions are flawed. I am sure that all those who think along these lines must be aware of the concept of deterrence. Also, to say that the country’s threat perception is unfounded is not true. Its security forces have had several border skirmishes with India over the last many years. Even if the chances of a full-blown war are slim, it is important for a country to keep its defense system upgraded and strong.
India and Pakistan are two countries in the region that spend humungous amounts on defense. They are also nuclear powers and claim that they have a significant number of atomic warheads. Does this mean that they are going to use nuclear weapons against each other in case of a war? Not likely. But they still spend a lot on making new weapons and upgrading the existing ones. This is done to maintain deterrence. The same is the case with Bangladesh. While it is easy to criticize Bangladesh for not spending enough on making the condition of its masses better, it would be better if those leveling such criticism compare the human development indices of their countries with that of Bangladesh.