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    ‘Pivot’ Prompts US to Send Newest, Best Weapons to Asia-Pacific - Carter

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    The US military is deploying its newest and best weapons to the Asia-Pacific in the latest stage of President Barack Obama’s strategic “pivot” to the region, Defense Secretary Ashton Carter said on Thursday.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — According to Carter, the Defense Department is sending its most advanced arms to the Asia-Pacific, including F-22 and F-35 combat planes, DDG-1000-class guided-missile destroyers and strategic bombers, and it will spend $16 billion over the next five years on KC-46A Pegasus long-range refueling aircraft.

    “The US will continue to sharpen our military edge so we remain the most powerful military in the region,” Carter said in a speech aboard the US nuclear-powered aircraft carrier Carl Vinson off San Diego, California. “These leap-ahead investments will keep us ahead in the Asia Pacific and elsewhere.”

    The Defense Department is investing more than $21 billion for initial development of the next Stealth bomber, the Northrop Grumman B-21 Raider, and it is increasing funding for undersea drones capable of operating in shallow water, Carter stated.

    The United States, he added, is spending “more than $40 billion over the next five years to ensure we continue to have the most lethal undersea force in the world," Carter said. That effort includes “tripling” the strike capability of Tomahawk missiles on Virginia-class nuclear submarines.

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