Doug Bandow: How Many Enemies, How Much Military Spending?
Defense spending dipped in the early 1990s, but real outlays merely dropped from the Reagan build-up back to the Cold War average. Since then military expenditures (the baseline budget excluding costs of Afghanistan and Iraq) have climbed to a peacetime record. America accounts for nearly half of the world's military outlays.
That is, Washington is spending more today on its military now than it did when the U.S. was confronting the Soviet Union, Warsaw Pact, Maoist China, and assorted Third World autocracies.
Whatever could justify such outlays?
It certainly isn't the power of America's enemies.