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Why Global Military Spending Is On The Rise

Why Global Military Spending Is On The Rise


Global military spending is
on the rise. That means more and better
equipped soldiers on land more warships at sea and more high tech fighter
jets in the skies. In 2018, worldwide, military
spending hit 1.8 trillion dollars. It has reached the highest point since
us at SIPRI have started compiling world data over the
last 30 something years. So what does all this mean? Does more military spending
make the world safer? Or is it a warning
of conflict to come? The last time spending rivaled today’s
levels was at the height of President Reagan’s Cold War arms
buildup in the late 1980s. But the sudden collapse of the Soviet
Union in 1991 changed the game. Military spending soon plummeted. Large scale military conflicts virtually disappeared
for the most part, at least. And the global economy boomed. By 1998, global spending hit its
lowest point since the Cold War. But then… There is a major
incident in lower Manhattan. Apparently, a plane has crashed into one
of the upper floors of the World Trade Center. The September 11th attacks in
2001 prompted a massive U.S. military mobilization for President
Bush’s ‘War on Terror’. Our enemy is a radical network
of terrorists and every government that supports them. As the U.S. and its allies deploy troops to
Afghanistan and Iraq, global spending numbers swelled, until Obama’s first
term, when war fatigue, internal budget pressures and troop withdrawals
pushed spending back down again. So if it wasn’t Iraq and
Afghanistan that propelled military spending to record levels in 2018, what was it? During all of this, a tectonic geopolitical
shift was taking place in East Asia, the rise of China. In 1990, the U.S., the Soviet Union, then
Germany, France, the U.K. and so on made up
the top 10 military spenders. But fast forward to 2018 and
those top spenders have drastically changed. China has jumped from a share of just
2 percent to 14 percent, the second largest behind the U.S. The country’s explosive economic growth allowed
it to increase spending for 24 straight years, culminating in a
2018 budget of 250 billion dollars. So where’s all that money going
to modernize China’s People’s Liberation Army? President Xi Jinping hopes to
fully modernize the military by 2035 and complete training into a
world class force by 2049. They want to assert themselves as a
regional superpower, but also as a world superpower competing
with the U.S. on a military basis. Progress has been swift. Since just 2011, China has gone
from having zero commissioned aircraft carriers to two in operation
and a third under construction. The U.S. in comparison has eleven much more
massive and highly advanced carriers. The Chinese are fielding elite fighter jets
as well, like the J-20 Chengdu and the Shenyang FC-31. Together, these fighters are designed
to compete with America’s latest generation Stealth F-22
Raptor and F-35. U.S. officials claim the Chinese used hacked
F-35 plans to help build these next generation aircraft. And that leads us to cyber warfare. China is spending big there, too. China doesn’t only want
to hack into U.S. computer networks, it wants to find
a way to neutralize U.S. advantages on the
physical battlefield. China has been watching how the
United States has conducted military operations very closely for
the last 25 years. They understand how dependent we
are on information enabled technologies and they have been developing asymmetric
capabilities to deny us those key enabling technologies. China’s also spending money to update
its nuclear arsenal and the bombers and submarines that carry those
weapons of mass destruction. Then there’s hypersonic missiles. They travel more than five times the
speed of sound, making them difficult to detect and neutralize. And if that wasn’t enough, these cutting
edge weapons also come tipped with nuclear warheads. Another really significant area is
China’s development of anti satellite weapons. Space is critical to just about everything
we do with regards to military operations, for reconnaissance, to communicating
with our own forces, to placing weapons on targets. If China or other adversaries can deny
the United States access to space based capabilities that would fundamentally
change the military equation here on Earth. China is also expanding its
military presence beyond its borders. In 2017, China opened its first overseas
base in the African country of Djibouti. China has been flexing its
military muscles in its own backyard as well. China is trying to project power into
the South China Sea, where it has territorial disputes over resource rich
islands and shallow reefs with nations like the
Philippines and Vietnam. China has begun unilaterally asserting
claims over these islands, turning several into full scale military
installations and demanding vessels recognize Chinese authority
in surrounding waters. An international court ruled against
these actions in 2016. The U.S. also rebuffs China’s demands by frequently
sailing Navy ships through the waters, China claims. Still, China shows no
signs of backing down. There is the prospect that the two
sides could get into a skirmish, a crisis, or even potentially a war in
the waters or airspace over the South China Sea, or even more likely,
in my view, over Taiwan. The island of Taiwan, once under
mainland China’s control, broke away during China’s communist
revolution with U.S. support and now governs
itself as a democracy. But today’s mainland communist leadership
still claims the island. Most analysts don’t believe that China has
the ability today to launch an amphibious invasion of Taiwan and take
the country over by force and occupy it. What concerns more observers is the
possibility that China might use some of its increasing military capabilities to
try to blockade or coerce Taiwan into politically unifying
with the mainland. President Xi Jinping has ramped up
military exercises around Taiwan and further diplomatically isolated the island since
he came to power in 2012. The other thing to remember about China’s
military spending is a lot of its military spending is actually
directed internally toward maintaining political stability within China. 2019’s unrest in Hong Kong has prompted
concern over how China might use its upgraded military capabilities. After weeks of protests, the People’s
Liberation Army released this video showing soldiers conducting battle exercises
in urban environments and quelling simulated civilian unrest. The overall worry? a newly empowered China will not be
a benevolent player on the world stage. Instead, using its military
prowess to bully weaker neighboring countries and to suppress its own people
or those it claims it represents. This worry has helped prompt
spending increases throughout the Asia-Pacific region, countries as diverse
as Japan, South Korea, Vietnam and Australia all increased
spending in 2018. Vietnam started buying submarines. Taiwan started developing more anti
aircraft missiles for instance. Japan is also starting
to modernize its weapons. Overall, in the whole Asia, it’s
almost seen as action reaction. But perhaps most
importantly, the U.S. has taken notice, too. The United States remains the
world’s undisputed foremost military power. Its budget is larger than the
next eight biggest spenders combined. The United States defense budget actually
still dwarfs China by a significant margin. Not only is the United States still
the number one defense spender in the world, but most of the other
major spenders are also U.S. allies. Countries such as South Korea,
Japan, Germany, France, Britain and so on. In 2018, U.S. military spending hits 649 billion dollars,
an increase of four point six percent from 2017 and the first time
the budget had increased at all since 2011. China’s rise remains a
major factor behind the increase. China’s expanding its influence into the
Pacific, which has always been this area controlled by the
US since World War 2. So it is this pushing the boundaries
of sphere influence between China and U.S. China’s expanding power has
been on the U.S.’s radar for years. But President Trump’s election ushered
in a particularly hawkish national security staff. This staff has pushed the idea that the
world is entering a new era of so-called great power competition, reviving
justifications for the large scale conventional forces and nuclear arsenals
that fell out of style after the collapse of
the Soviet Union. To help prepare for potential conflict in
this perceived new era of great power competition, the Trump administration
has fast track military modernization and expansion plans, from
recruiting more soldiers to upgrading the Navy’s aircraft carriers,
completing the acquisition of the new F-35 fighter jet platform,
designing next generation bombers and submarines, upgrading nuclear forces, dumping
money into cyber operations and more. This spending shows few signs of
slowing down, with the U.S. charting a defense budget
increase for 2019. And it’s not all about China. There is also a Russian resurgence
under way that few saw coming. The view back in the late 1990s
is that we were always going to most likely be dealing
with a benign Russia. That’s fundamentally changed. From President Vladimir Putin’s snatching
of Crimea to his destabilization of Ukraine, election meddling in the
West, advanced cyber capabilities and cutting edge hypersonic missile technology, Russia
is back in the great power game. It’s been increasing spending since 2011 and
had a very big and expensive modernization program until
about 2016. And then as the program is nearing its
end, we of course see the spending taper out and slightly decrease. That resurgence has prompted considerable
spending increases in former Soviet states fearing
Russian aggression. Increases include Poland, Bulgaria,
Latvia, Lithuania and Romania. So does 2018’s record spending
levels mean conflict is imminent? These numbers do indicate issues
of increased tension, increased rivalries, possible conflicts that might occur. I think the question is
whether spending causes conflicts. So far, no definitive answer, but
there definitely is a relationship there. Global military spending by itself
is not necessarily the problem. Rather, the spending reflects how countries
are seeing their interests and their beliefs that they are in
competition with other great powers and that they have to prepare
for the possibility of conflict.

100 comments on “Why Global Military Spending Is On The Rise

  1. Mxm, they just preparing for aliens war, en making public think like they defending against each other. After ww1 and ww2 only stupid humans would think of going to ww3

  2. why do you globalists care? you want the world in ashes so long as it pads your pockets while you undermine your country and sell out your countrymen.

  3. The crux of the issue is the US has been captured by the military industrial complex. Jimmy Carter said the US has been at peace for only 16 of its 242 years as a nation. Counting wars, military attacks and military occupations, there have actually only been five years of peace in US history.

    "We have wasted, I think, $3 trillion," Carter said, referring to American military spending. "China has not wasted a single penny on war, and that's why they're ahead of us. In almost every way.

    "And I think the difference is if you take $3 trillion and put it in American infrastructure, you'd probably have $2 trillion left over. We'd have high-speed railroad. We'd have bridges that aren't collapsing. We'd have roads that are maintained properly. Our education system would be as good as that of, say, South Korea or Hong Kong.

  4. China overstepped. They THINK they've stolen U.S. defense technologies- but when they move to use the mostly stolen tech they'll soon learn their reality. They've downloaded back doors into their networks and their reality will turn into uncontrollable problems. China China China- America is not stupid. American knows your nature more than you know your own nature. Chinese leadership arrogance & ego have painted themselves into a trap that'll expose Chinese schemes and result in a gross loss. Stealing, copying, hacking, intimidating, exploiting is no basis for long term success. America will prevail due to rule of law, open markets, free speech & thought= the realm of emanant [creative] advantage. Such a stupid play China. So so so busted playing the wrong cards. Greed, power hungry racing to take over the world in 50 years. What the hell are you thinking? But don't feel bad. This will bring an end to the Communist Party in China and that's a great thing for the Chinese people, surrounding countries and the world.

  5. Kind of sad isn't it while the world is spending money to buy weapons to kill each other instead of educating the younger generation and taking care of their citizen's health.

  6. from $1.4 to $1.8 — it's just inflation 🙂
    Compare with Global GDP: 250% rise since 1990. I am wrong?

  7. Communist countries will never rise above the US because they will always have to use their military power on their own people.

  8. Why? Because Asymmetrical warfare uniting Military with Federal Governments & Entities, States & Locals have been formed to be the "new" Law Enforcement. NATO & Allies, Rivals & Allies – problem is global.

  9. .. and more SENSELESS KILLING of PEOPLE, DRIVEN by the OUT OF CONTROL REAL PRESIDENTS OF AMERICA, namely the AMERICAN MILITARY INDUSTRIAL COMPLEX !

  10. CNBC: Puts ethnic figure on potato cam with thick accent.
    Leftist demonrats: They are so much smarter than Americans.

  11. Because the U.S. wants to impose its ways closer to the borders of China and Russia.

    Russia and China…….ENDING U.S. HEGEMONY ONE DAY AT A TIME.

  12. After the collapse of Soviet Union, there was no justification for keeping NATO and therefore no reason for large military spending. But, in fact, NATO has been expanding right up to Russia's border when the country feels encircled by US and its allies. And, somehow, you saw resurgent Russia as reason for US increase in defense spending. The same can be said about China in South China Sea. US has been spending way too much on its defense when it almost always feels like offensive spending. In the Cold War, US had Soviet Union as scaremongering tactic to invest in military machinery and technology. This time, it is Russia and China as well. And, Russia election meddling in US? I hope I don't need to remind you of the countless elections meddling that US has carried through decades in different countries and still carrying out covert operations to that effect. What a joke CNBC is!

  13. I think it's so funny that how none of the terrorists werent even from Afghanistan or Iraq and instead they were from the United Arab Emirates Jordan, Bolivia. Lol

  14. Freedom is priceless. Keep spending if you don't want to end up Russia's or China's puppet state. I say we are not spending enough to keep democracy safe.

  15. USA 🇺🇸 has 6000+ nuclear bombs.
    Russia has 6000 + nuclear bombs
    12000 nuclear bombs are enough to destroy planet earth multiple times 😣😣.

  16. “Say: O people! Let not this life and its deceits deceive you, for the world and all that is therein is held firmly in the grasp of His Will. He bestoweth His favor on whom He willeth, and from whom He willeth He taketh it away. He doth whatsoever He chooseth. Had the world been of any worth in His sight, He surely would never have allowed His enemies to possess it, even to the extent of a grain of mustard seed. He hath, however, caused you to be entangled with its affairs, in return for what your hands have wrought in His Cause. This, indeed, is a chastisement which ye, of your own will, have inflicted upon yourselves, could ye but perceive it. Are ye rejoicing in the things which, according to the estimate of God, are contemptible and worthless, things wherewith He proveth the hearts of the doubtful”.
    (Baha'u'llah, Gleanings from the Writings of Baha'u'llah, p. 208)

  17. China's lies and falsehoods upon the 1999 British handover agreements treaty with Hong Kong, will never get Taiwan to agree with China on anything, forever.
    I Remain,
    BILY THE KID
    29AUG2019; 13:35 H.H.

  18. The .military industrial complex are the folk that control USA !! I mean the reserve army should be way more capable to take on those flimsy terrorist,s any excuse to spend more coin on the military .. The USA has more planes in there bone yard than most first class airforces .the USA fielded the most sophisticated highly trained highly equipped military force the world has seen and still lost Vietnam so money will not always create the best army, the world's superpowers of the future will also spend a fortune on the military as there is so much profit in it for the elite (the assholes of the world,parasites) it's always been that way and always will!

  19. Trump has to understand Mexico is not an enemy but a friend and US has to help Mexico in its development. Mexico could become 4th largest economy. North America has to be more integrated, then China or Rusia are gonna think twice before making an aggression.

  20. Blame the US gov we the people don't even know what the hell is going on anymore all I knows is the usa been attacking nations a lot more in the last 19 years, as well trying to provoke china and russia into a war, as well bullying smaller mations, removing citizens wrights, false news, and have killed millions in name of a false peace, creating terrorist cells as well arming them. If our nation would back off everything would calm down.

  21. I don't understand this they are ppl out there risking there lives for our country they need to be paid at least 3 mill a year for tht cuz it's ur life were talking

  22. US is at war most of it's history and sees every growing nation as a "threat" even when they are the ones that are thousands of miles from their own coast lines shooting down airliners like Iran air 655. Americans – your co2 emissions don't even include your military and your co2 emissions per capita also by far surpasses China by several times and you still don't have high speed rail. Traffic jams getting worse leading to even more emissions and no low speed or medium speed maglevs in cities. This military spending to leading to further debt and made countries far worse. War on terrorism is a failure compared to reeducation the people adn reintegrating them into society. US of course calls it a concentration camp despite their own failure. Pathetic.

  23. Here in America (the greatest country in the world) we don't care about education, healthcare, or infrastructure. We care about only about "democracy and freedom" and the 1000 places we can fight a war for it.

  24. Could it have anything to do with the hegemon having less interest in the world? Like it or not, the US is slowly moving away from the rest of the world and only focus on issues within their own sphere of influence: North and South America. There is a reason the American people elected Obama with his limited government experience and now Trump, with absolutely no political experience let alone, foreign politics experience. Everyone is preparing for the day when America stop caring and they all have to fend for themselves which could only mean bloody wars are coming whether we like it or not. There are a lot of unresolved issues out there in the world and all suppressed by the shear might of the US military and economy. Once that fear and support is gone, its everyone for themselves.

  25. could we like not have a major global conflict or cold war please?

    i rather have the world spend its cash on improving the peoples lives and health instead of making new weapons and sending young men to die in stupid wars*cough cough like invading Iran*

  26. Modernizing an already powerful army and giving their soldiers the best equipment to work with. Meanwhile Canadian service men and women use archaic gear and our ships and helicopters fall apart

  27. Why are we humans at war agian….did Hitler rise from his grave with all his generals and troops to take over the world agian..Ooh china and Russia who we saved in ww2

  28. When the US do a massacre to its own people: Yeah, that's what you should do
    When the China do massacre to its own people: This is a crime against Humanity!

  29. This is the war that never ends. Yes it goes on and on my friends. Some people started waging it not knowing what it was and they'll continue waging it forever just because, this is the war that never ends Yes it goes on and on my friends.

  30. Have you , any of you, honestly had a long sit down conversation
    with your friends and one of them says,
    " I like the killing & raping".

    It just does NOT add up.

  31. History repeats itself. Anyone remember how we 'defeated' communism (aka USSR) by pushing them into bankrupting themselves as they tried to keep up with our military spending? Same thing is happening now – only the tables are reversed.

  32. I don't understand why govts spend more on defence whereas biggest threat is Global Warming. Imagine what we can do if those dollars are spent on preventing global warming.

  33. When Chinese embassy was hit by missile in former Yugoslavia. Collin Powell explained they used a wrong map. I don't think Clinton ordered the strike. Must be one of the hawkish general. World power need to be balanced. So anyone want throw a punch will think twice.

  34. Well You Know That These Military Weapons Contractors and Manufacturers Are Going To Be Profiting Heavily Again… The Only Winners Are Weapon Dealers

  35. To those thinking China spends a fraction of the USA, remember that everything in China is cheaper anyway, by government organization. So, if walmart gets 2 billion dollars worth of junk made in a PRC sweat shop for 2 million dollars, what do you think China will spend on making their own weapons?

    While the USA was focused on shooting up the rocks in the middle east, the Chinese were preparing to beat us in both war and economy. Start working on making friends with the masses in the world, and you will have a real buffer zone between US and China.

  36. One year budget of world military industry can solve lots of other problems of the world like water crisis provarti energy crisis

  37. When they say about China's Military spending , they said in a dangerous evil tone with concern but when they say about US, suddenly background music changes, like a saviour has arrived.They critcise China Military spending call them bully but also very proud that US ranked no1 military spender and they are happy that US has 10 LARGE AIRCRAFT CARRIERS while China have only 2, which is quite small compared to US

  38. Those who are the biggest manufacturers of arms, are benefiting the most from all the tension in the world, and they are directly or indirectly the cause, becuase they are the biggest benefactor of war…..so they talk about world peace at the same time sell weapons to those nations who are looking for war…..so much hypocrisy, it's become a big joke.

  39. USA long wanted to invade China. Once Japan got there first. After WW2 They armed the Nationalists in Taiwan and wanted to invade from North Korea with the help of the Nationalists from the south .
    Vietnam was to be the steppingstone for invasion of China too.

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