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U.S. Military Spending: Protection or Danger?



The United States spends an astronomical amount of money on its military - more than any other nation. In fact, more than the next 8 nations combined. It helps fund 750 military bases in 80 countries. It has quite an impact on the world.


Last week, the U.S. Congress and President Biden enacted the National Defense Authorization Act of 2023, which increased military spending to the largest level since the end of World War II, even adjusted for inflation.


Increasing technology makes war more dangerous. And growing conflict between the United States, China and Russia (and of course Ukraine) is fueling an arms race between superpowers that could end up disastrous.


Today, we consider what the United States actually gets for all this military spending. Does it make Americans and the world safer, or put them in more danger? What else could this money be used for?


And I suggest we turn to world approaches to world security - like a stronger United Nations - rather than large nations slugging it out with each other.


Resources:

~ U.S. Department of Defense, 12/23/22

Biden Signs National Defense Authorization Act Into Law


~ Union of Concerned Scientists, 12/14/22

Defense Spending Reaches Record High as Pentagon Fails Its Audit – For Fifth Time


Data on U.S. and international military spending…

~ Stockholm International Peace Research Institute


Report on U.S. military bases around the world…

~ Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft, 9/20/21

Drawdown: Improving U.S. and Global Security Through Military Base Closures Abroad


~ United Nations annual spending


Other news articles about the recent military spending bill, both good and mediocre…

~ New York Times, 12/18/22

Military Spending Surges, Creating New Boom for Arms Makers

~ Slate, 12/8/22

There Is No Good Reason for a Defense Budget This Large

~ CNN, 12/15/22

Here’s what’s in the $858 billion defense bill

~ Reuters, 12/15/22

U.S. Senate passes record $858 billion defense act, sending bill to Biden

~ Fox News, 12/18/22

Ukraine aid opened the floodgates for more Pentagon spending as US eyes Russia, China

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