Vox Populi

A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature

Lindsay Koshgarian: Here’s What We Could Have If We Slashed the Military Budget

The US military budget sucks up an enormous amount of resources without making the world more peaceful or democratic. Here are a few ways we could better spend that $717 billion.

The Pentagon is set to receive $717 billion in 2019 — more than half of the roughly trillion-dollar annual budget. That level of Pentagon funding is immense by any standard. Next year’s budget will be roughly twice the size of military appropriations in the mid-1990s, before George W. Bush and his twin wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. And it will be higher than the peak of Pentagon spending during the Vietnam War.

None of this is necessary. The Pentagon is the least accountable part of the federal government, wasting billions of dollars on needless bureaucracy, pouring billions more into dangerous (and redundant) nuclear weapons, and cozying up to contractors who siphon off roughly half of the Pentagon’s budget each year. Even worse, the never-ending US wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have made the world more dangerous, and American imperialism continues to undermine the autonomy of other nations and peoples.

While profligate Pentagon spending doesn’t make the world more peaceful or more democratic, it does guarantee that the US government will be cash-strapped when it tries to fund vital public programs. Here are a few ways we could be spending our money if we didn’t bequeath the military with $717 billion [continue reading]


Lindsay Koshgarian is the program director of the National Priorities Project at the Institute for Policy Studies.

First published in Jacobin.

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U.S.S. Gerald R. Ford Aircraft Carrier: “The United States maintains a massive navy, with capabilities far surpassing all other nations combined. The aging fleets of Russia and China pose little risk to the contiguous United States. It makes one wonder why such a large full-time ground based military is necessary for the United States, especially when much of it is based overseas. America can protect itself using increased naval power, drones, and Special Forces, while drawing down conventional land forces that all-too-often are used for nation building purposes they were never meant for in the first place.” [Source: Richardcyoung.com]

One comment on “Lindsay Koshgarian: Here’s What We Could Have If We Slashed the Military Budget

  1. Pamela Collett
    September 28, 2018

    War costs the earth… Slash military spending for the good of everyone. thank you

    Liked by 1 person

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