The United States has one again dramatically topped the list of global military spenders. Last year, U.S. spending on the military - including horrendously expensive nukes - made up 39% of the global total. As an organization dedicated to demilitarization, we call upon Congress to cut our exorbitant military budget and reinvest in diplomacy and human needs. Such an approach would shift foreign policy strategy towards solving the root causes of conflict, both at home and abroad. The societal problems we face will never be solved by military means and violence, only by investing in our environment and community welfare.
That is why we joined the American Friends Service Committee and 37 other organizations in releasing the following statement:
"Once again, the United States tops one of the world’s most infamous rankings lists— top military spenders. In 2020, the United States’ spending on the military and nuclear weapons made up 39% of the global total, according to an annual report released today by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute. This is the third year in a row that the United States’ spending has increased.
As 38 organizations that work in the United States, we are continually disappointed by the members of Congress and presidents that choose to purchase weapons and wage warfare at the expense of our communities and our children’s futures.
Our political leaders’ militaristic foreign policy choices and blatant disregard for the domestic needs of taxpayers have fueled the growth of the bloated Pentagon budget year after year. In 2020, our nation faced crises ranging from a pandemic to disastrous wildfires, evidencing the urgent need for investment in public health and climate change instead of F-35 warplanes and new nuclear weapons. The misallocation of our resources into militarized spending has weakened our nation’s ability to respond to the things that affect people’s day-to-day wellbeing.
Even as it becomes increasingly apparent that militarized spending isn’t the answer to today’s global problems, the Biden administration proposed increasing the 2022 discretionary defense budget to a whopping $753 billion. Members of Congress must do better. We call on them to significantly decrease spending on the military and nuclear weapons for FY2022 and to re-allocate that money into true national priorities like public health, diplomacy, infrastructure, and addressing climate change."
Alliance of Baptists
American Friends Service Committee
Beyond the Bomb
Campaign for Peace Disarmament and Common Security
Center for International Policy
Christian Peacemaker Teams
Climate Crisis and Militarism Project of Veterans for Peace
Coalition on Human Needs
Columban Center for Advocacy and Outreach
Congregation of Our Lady of Charity of the Good Shepherd, U.S. Provinces DC Dorothy Day Catholic Worker
DC Peace Team
Dominican Sisters of Sparkill
East Lansing, University United Methodist Church
InterReligious Task Force on Central American and Colombia (IRTF Cleveland) LP Indivisible
Leadership Conference of Women Religious
Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns
Massachusetts Peace Action
National Advocacy Center of the Sisters of the Good Shepherd
National Priorities Project at the Institute for Policy Studies
Passionist Solidarity Network
Pax Christi USA
Peace Action New York State
Peace Education Center
Pennsylvania Council of Churches
Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association
Sisters of Mercy of the Americas – Justice Team
The United Methodist Church – General Board of Church and Society Washington Office on Latin America
Win Without War
Women’s Action for New Directions
World BEYOND War
World Beyond War – Florida Chapters
Photo: by +Peace