CRF Blog

Everything About the Budget

by Bill Hayes

In Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About The Budget* *But Were Afraid to Ask, David Wessel in the Wall Street Journal goes through basic facts about the budget.

The U.S. defense budget is greater than the combined defense budgets of the next 17 largest spenders.

About $1 of every $5 the federal government spent in 2011 went to defense, and about 20 cents of that $1 was spent on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. In all, the U.S. spends about $700 billion a year on its military. That’s more than the combined military budgets of China, the U.K., France, Russia, Japan, Saudi Arabia, Germany, India, Italy, Brazil, South Korea, Australia, Canada, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, Spain and Israel. The Pentagon counters that the U.S. also asks its military to do more than all those other countries combined—to keep sea lanes open for international trade, for instance, and to be prepared to deploy almost anywhere. [more]