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Research Report

Surplus Arms in South America: A Survey

Aaron Karp
Copyright Date: Aug. 1, 2009
Published by: Small Arms Survey
Pages: 59

Table of Contents

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  1. (pp. 1-8)
  2. (pp. 9-9)
  3. (pp. 10-10)
  4. (pp. 11-11)
  5. (pp. 12-12)
  6. (pp. 13-13)
  7. (pp. 14-14)
  8. (pp. 15-25)

    Long at the forefront of international small arms issues, public debate and activism in South America have largely focused on matters surrounding civilian firearms, estimated here to total between 21.7 and 26.8 million. The reasons for this civilian preoccupation are principally linked to chronic gun violence. South America has 14 per cent of the global population, and roughly 3.5 to 4 per cent of the world’s civilian firearms, but it suffers from roughly 40 per cent of all homicides committed with firearms.

    Military small arms are rarely part of public debate, largely because of a strong culture of national security...

  9. (pp. 26-58)

    As a result of the last dictatorship and of the disastrous experience of the 1982 Malvinas/Falklands War, public confidence in Argentina’s military institutions and competence severely eroded. Of greatest importance for this analysis, public distrust and the rise of democracy led to massive cuts in military personnel, creating an unprecedented small arms and light weapons surplus.

    From a generous pre-war requirement of approximately 550,000 modern small arms and light weapons, the three armed services have seen their combined need decline to no more than an estimate of 127,500 weapons. Approximately 425,000 small arms have become superfluous.

    Argentina’s use of MANPADS...

  10. (pp. 59-59)