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The new global arms race – Thomas Gaist

Since the 1980s, in an effort to maintain the position of unchallenged global primacy it achieved during and immediately following the dissolution of the Soviet Union, the US ruling elite has spearheaded a global arms race and militarization drive that now threatens to produce a third imperialist world war.

After a superficial and short-lived drawdown during the “peace dividend” years of the 1990s, the US military’s expenditures have grown fantastically since the beginning of the 21st century, under the fraudulent banner of the “global war on terrorism.”

Between 2000 and 2006 alone, the US Department of Defense budget rose from $300 billion to over $530 billion. As of 2014, official US military expenditures totaled $610 billion, or nearly 35 percent of total military spending globally.

Taking into account the US military’s secret “black budget” and the various “contingency” funding packages for wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere, the real amount consumed every year by US militarism is closer to $1 trillion.

These expenditures are necessary to fulfill the US government’s openly stated commitment to endless and total war. As reaffirmed in the Obama administration’s 2014 National Security Strategy document, the Pentagon is committed to safeguarding America’s status as “the world’s leading global power.” The NSS 2014 calls for the US to intervene “in every part of an increasingly interconnected planet,” including the Arctic Circle.

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