Global Day of Action on Military Spending , Tues. April 12
Larry Kazdan | April 3, 2011 at 06:20 pmby
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Global military spending in 2009 topped $1.5 trillion dollars and has increased 49% since 2000, with the United States accounting for 46.5% of the total. From 1998 to 2001, the US, the UK, and France earned more income from arm sales to developing countries than they gave in aid. Though the UN was created after WWII to preserve peace through international cooperation and collective security, the UN’s entire budget equals approximately 1.8% of total world military spending.
And while military spending soars, the international community is falling further behind in its promise to achieve Millennium Development Goals by 2015. It is estimated that these goals could be met by spending $329 billion per year, a mere 20% of military spending. The sum of $102 billion per year would substantially eradicate extreme poverty and hunger, and $10 billion annually would drastically improve maternal health and reduce child mortality.
Fact sheets provided for the event indicate that Canada is ranked 13th in the list of top military spenders with a defence budget of $21.185 billion in 2009-2010. Canada ranks 6th highest among NATO’s 28 members. Canada's proposed purchase of F-35 fighter jets for an estimated $30 billion has become a election issue in Canada with the costs and merits of the plane under challenge.
The founding organizations behind the Global Day are the the International Peace Bureau (IPB), a Nobel Peace Laureate (1910) with 320 member organisations in 70 countries, and the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS), a progressive multi-issue think tank based in Washington.
Visit http://www.demilitarize.org for more information about the Global Day, the endorsing organizations, and the specific actions.
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