All over the world governments are pushing for an increase in military spending. In the U.S., Donald Trump has proposed an increase of $54 billion – 10% of the annual allocation, to be paid for by cutting diplomacy and foreign aid. All European governments in NATO agreed twice in Wales and Warsaw to spend 2% of their GDP on defense while in parallel creating new funding systems for military research and development. For its part, China has declared it will increase its military budget by 7% in 2017. Among other top military spending countries, Saudi Arabia and Japan are also planning to increase their military expenditure. Moreover, Trump and the U.S. administration are pushing in this direction, although this is not a new phenomenon.
With this scenario there are plenty of new reasons to renew our call for a cut on military spending (based upon SIPRI data) and to get close to the human security approach that many would prefer to see.
The Global Campaign on Military Spending (GCOMS) is an international campaign founded in December 2014 and promoted by the International Peace Bureau. The aim of the campaign is to push governments to invest money in the sectors of health, education, employment and climate change rather than military. The GCOMS also incorporates the Global Day of Action on Military Spending (GDAMS), which is now in its 7th year.
We need to involve even more citizens and organisations in an open and robust debate on the counter-productive results of military expenditure. More than ever, we need new partners to work on the ongoing Global Campaign on Military Spending (GCOMS), and to make the Global Days of Action on Military Spending (GDAMS) a great success!