U.S. and global military spending

global_spending_graphThe U.S. military budget comprises over 44 percent of the entire world’s military spending, reports the Washington-based Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation (Laicie Olson, “U.S. vs. Global Defense Spending,” 21 May 2010).

The Center calculates that worldwide military spending totalled US$1.57 trillion in 2008, the latest year for which global numbers are available, and that the U.S. accounted for $696.3 billion of that total. (The 2010 U.S. military budget is $720 billion.) The non-U.S. members of NATO accounted for another $325.5 billion, or 20.7% of world military spending, making the total for all members of NATO just over $1 trillion (65% of the global total).

Earlier this year, U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates chastised the other members of NATO for what the U.S. considers to be their inadequate military spending and gradual “demilitarization”.

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