Research: Publications

USA and Allies Outspend Potential Rivals on Military by Four-to-One; America Carries Much of the Defense Burden for its Allies

July 17, 2012 | Report

By Carl Conetta

Download PDF

Efforts to cull savings from the US defense budget for purposes of deficit reduction have been stymied by Pentagon claims that any significant cut might have “devastating” or even “catastrophic” effects. However, a review of global defense spending data shows that America and its allies outspend potential rivals by a margin of four-to-one.

Moreover, the United States carries much more than its share of the allied defense burden, as measured by percentage of Gross Domestic Product allocated to defense. Together, the United States and its close allies worldwide spent $1.23 trillion on their armed forces in 2010 – more than 68% of the global total. But had the burden been shared equally based on GDP, the United States could have reduced its military spending by one-third (33%), including spending for war.

Download PDF

CIP in the Press