ITALY - $35.8 billion: No. 10 but spending less. Over the past decade, Rome decreased state military spending by 13.3 percent – more than any other country in the top 10. According to Stockholm-based SIPRI's annual report, of the 19 states in the G20, only Argentina, Indonesia, and Italy did not increase their military spending in 2009.
A comrade holds a photo of Italian Army Sgt. Maj. Roberto Valente in Naples, Italy, on Sept. 17 after Valente was killed in action in Afghanistan. Ciro De Luca/Agnfoto/Reuters/FILE
INDIA - $36.3 billion: The only Asian country in the top 15 aside from rival China. India spent the ninth highest amount of any country worldwide. That’s a 67.3 percent increase over the decade, according to SIPRI.
But per capita military spending in India – the world’s second most-populous country – is one of the world’s lowest, at just $30.4 per person. Indian National Defense Academy (NDA) cadets celebrate graduating at Khadakwasia in Pune, India, on May 31. AP/FILE
SAUDI ARABIA - $41.2 billion: The biggest military spender in the Middle East has increased defense investments 66.9 percent over the past decade. In 2009, the world’s second-largest oil producer increased its military expenditure by 2.7 percent, making it 33 percent of the total national budget. Such increases have created Saudi Arabia's first budget deficit since 2004, according to SIPRI. Saudi soldiers walk near the Khoba front-line border with Yemen on Jan. 27. Fahad Shadeed/Reuters
GERMANY - $45.6 billion: The biggest economy in Europe has gradually shifted revenues away from defense, causing a 6.7 percent drop in military spending over the past decade. A German Bundeswehr army soldier stands next to his armored vehicle during a patrol in Chahar Dara district of Afghanistan on May 13. Fabrizio Bensch/Reuters
JAPAN - $51 billion: The world’s second-largest economy is focusing revenues away from military, decreasing such spending by 1.3 percent over the past decade. That’s less than 1 percent of total GDP, whereas the US spends 4.3 percent of GDP on its military, and Saudi Arabia spends 8.3 percent.
A Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force officer monitors screens at the Pacific Missile Range Facility on Kauai, Hawaii, during a Japanese missile defense test in the waters off the island in December 2007. Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force/AP/FILE
RUSSIA - $53.3 billion: The Russian bear’s military spending saw a 105 percent increase from 2000. Strong oil revenues over the past decade helped Russia beef up its military, though the rate of increase has slowed in the past year because of falling gas prices. Russian army fighter jets fly over Moscow's Kremlin during rehearsals ahead of the upcoming Victory Day Parade on May 6. Ivan Sekretarev/AP
ENGLAND - $58.1 billion: London increased military spending 28.1 percent over the decade. As a percentage of GDP, that’s 2.5 percent, and about in line with the world average of 2.7 percent. At the end of 2009, the UK had 9,500 troops in Afghanistan, followed by Germany (4,280), France (3,750) and Italy (3,150) – all countries among the top 10 military spenders. British soccer player David Beckham looks at weaponry with British troops in Afghanistan on May 22. Beckham was in Afghanistan to boost morale of British troops. Squadron Leader Neville Clayton/BFBS/AP
FRANCE - $63.9 billion: The biggest military spender in Europe increased its budget 7.4 percent from 2000. France has the world’s second-highest per capita military expenditures, at $1,026 per person. The United States spends $2,100 per person. The Champs Elysee and Bastille Day ceremonies are shown in Paris on July 14, 2008. Michel Spingler/AP/FILE
CHINA - $100 billion: Beijing regards its military expenditures as a state secret, but SIPRI estimates that China spent $100 billion on its military in 2009. While this is less than one-sixth of what the US spends on its military, it is still a 217 percent increase from a decade earlier. Chinese militia take part in a military drill in Taiyuan, China, in July 2009. Reuters/FILE
UNITED STATES - $661 billion: The world's biggest defense budget increased by 75.8 percent from 2000. Overall, President Barack Obama’s defense budgets involve some ‘rebalancing’ of priorities from the George W. Bush era, but no major strategic shift, according to SIPRI. The US’s fiscal year 2011 budget is expected to rise to $739 billion.
The US Navy destroyer USS James E. Williams passes the Statue of Liberty in New York on May 26. Peter Morgan/AP
Why the new initiative is so controversial among US conservatives.
Howard LaFranchi & Linda Feldmann, Staff writers,
Ben Quinn, Correspondent /
April 11, 2013
The First International Treaty governing the multibillion-dollar arms trade was passed overwhelmingly by the UN General Assembly April 2, after seven years of talks. Supporters say it will help curb the flow of weapons to human rights abusers, but its prospects for passage in the US Senate are dim. Here's why.