While Americans are celebrating Christmas, a holiday marking the birth of ‘the Prince of Peace’ who taught mankind to love one another, the nation is actually driving terror, death and destruction on a global scale as the biggest buyer, user and seller of weaponry.
President Donald Trump asked for a $54 billion annual increase in military spending, but Congress approved an $80 billion hike in the Pentagon’s war budget instead.
With a $700 billion military budget, the U.S. is spending more than three times as much as China on its military, and 10 times as much as Russia. America accounts for more than 40 percent of global military spending.
The $80 billion a year military spending increase is more than enough to make public colleges and universities in the U.S. tuition-free.
In fact, Sen. Bernie Sanders’ most controversial proposal during the 2016 presidential campaign was estimated to cost the federal government only $47 billion per year but critics from both parties argued that his idea would bankrupt the country.
If the additional military spending over the next 10 years instead went to pay off student debt, it could come close to wiping it out entirely.
Few Democrats raised concerns about military spending, even with a commander-in-chief who is widely considered reckless and unstable.
U.S. military spending has been at permanent wartime levels since the 2001 terror attacks, despite the significant drawdowns in Afghanistan and Iraq under President Obama.
Spending has declined since the wars were at their peak in 2010, but U.S. military spending in 2015 remains at 190 percent of what it was before 9/11, according to data from the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, or SIPRI, a leading tracker of weapons and defense spending.
At a combined total of $217.2 billion, US companies listed in the SIPRI Top 100 account for a majority of the world’s arms sales, which totaled $374.8 billion in 2016 and are expected to rise under the hawkish Trump administration.
The world’s largest arms producer in 2016, was US-based Lockheed Martin.
The combined arms sales of companies listed in the SIPRI Top 100 from US allies in Western Europe — namely the United Kingdom, France, Italy and Germany — was $91.6 billion.
The arms sales of Russian companies listed in the SIPRI Top 100 accounted for 7.1 per cent of the overall total, amounting to $26.6 billion in 2016.
At the same time, the Trump administration is abandoning responsibility for planetary security by ignoring Climate change and rolling back action to combat that phenomenon.
Since the 1960s, America spent almost no time or money developing such pursuits as food, water and education for the world, despite the significant contribution that would have toward peace.
Starving, desperate, ignorant people make excellent prospects for recruiting among extremist religious cults that use terror to combat forces they see as imperialist oppressors, like the USA.
John F. Kennedy’s Peace Corps was funded at less than one-half of one percent of the Pentagon’s budget in the years after the 9-11 terrorist attacks.
That agency operates now with a budget of just $398 million, a tiny fraction of the $700 billion American taxpayers spend on global military adventures.
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