The world spent $1.92 trillion on the military in 2019. Our governments' ever-growing military capacities, have proved themselves completely useless to defend people from the COVID-19 pandemic, nor can they keep us safe in the face of other global emergencies such as climate change.
The world spent $1.92 trillion on the military in 2019, a 3.6% increase over the previous year and the highest figure since the end of the Cold War. Our governments' ever-growing military capacities, in the name of national security, have proved themselves completely useless to defend people from the COVID-19 pandemic, nor can they keep us safe in the face of other global emergencies such as climate change. In addition, as the victims of the wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, Yemen and elsewhere can testify, militarism makes conflicts worse rather than resolving them.
Current levels of military spending not only fail to provide true security, but they actually stand in the way of just and comprehensive solutions to the problems urgently demanding our attention. Indeed, the military power our rulers are so committed to -including new great power Cold Wars - helps create and sustain the very emergencies, tensions and injustice that they claim they are protecting their populations against.
We therefore demand that governments across the globe drastically reduce their military expenditures, especially those accounting for the largest shares of the world’s total spending, and reallocate the freed-up resources to human and common security-oriented sectors, notably for confronting the coronavirus pandemic and the eco-social collapse we are now facing.
Now is the time for a reset of our priorities as societies, and a new defense and security paradigm that puts human and environmental needs in the center of policies and budgets.
We need to defund the military if we are to defend people and the planet.
Join the Global Days of Action on Military Spending (GDAMS) from April 10 to May 17. To find out more visit the website of the Global Campaign on Military Spending (GCOMS). You can also read this Appeal in Spanish and French.