Friday President #trump visited The Pentagon where he signed several Executive Orders, including one directing a massive increase in #Military funding. But spending more than the next 192 countries combined yearly, how weak is the poor United States Military really?

The latest data

The size of the United States Army is relatively small in comparison to many countries such as China, but since WWI the number of people in the military has little relationship to the power that country can project. As of 2014, some of the following information was provided on the Military1 website by a former 82nd Airborne Division paratrooper.

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The US military budget was $711 billion in 2014 but dropped to only $597 billion in 2015. By comparison, the second largest military budget is China’s which is about $150 billion. In fact, $597 billion is about half of what the entire world spends on the military. Saudi Arabia spent $84 billion on the military in 2015.

The non-partisan Office of Management and Budget said the US spending on the military for 2012 was slightly more than the combined military budgets of China, Russia, the United Kingdom, Japan, France, Saudi Arabia, India, Germany, Italy and Brazil. Many of those are allies.

The US main battle tank, the M1 Abrams has never been defeated in combat. The US has approximately 8,700 Abrams tanks. China has about 500 of its most advanced model tank.

The US has 10 full-sized nuclear-powered aircraft carriers.

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The rest of the world also has 10, total, many of which are helicopter carriers, the US Navy also has 9 of those mini-carriers.

One of the most potent military machines on the battlefield is the attack helicopter. There are an estimated 8,400 attack helicopters in the world. Many are in the hands of NATO allies, but of the 8,400 total, the US accounts for 6,400 or about two-thirds of the total number in the world.

There are other military analyst's estimates which are very different as to actual numbers, but all of them give the US approximately the same ratio of hardware vs other countries. That is, one estimate by the International Institute for Strategic Studies says the US only has 3,600 attack helicopters, but their estimates for other countries comparably lower. Other measures such as the number of military satellites are much higher for the US.

Why Trump says military weak

It would seem to the average layperson that if the US spends slightly more on the military than the total of all other 195 countries, then if the entire world, including UK, Canada, France, Germany and other US allies attacked the US it would be almost a tie, except, of course, that the US also has more than 10,000 nuclear weapons.

This is worth emphasizing since so many people seem to think the US is weak.

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The United States spends slightly more on the military than the entire remainder of the planet which begs the question, if President Trump thinks we aren't strong enough, just what sort of military situation does President Trump plan to lead the country and the world into?

But the aerospace industry, as President Eisenhower warned of The Military Industrial complex as he left office, is a powerful force in US politics. Last year it is estimated that the top five aerospace companies alone spent about $54 million on lobbying.

And, despite the vast difference between US military strength and that of the next 10 or 20 countries combined, The Heritage Foundation whose “2017 Index U.S. Military Strength” gives the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps a collective grade of “marginal” for total power compared with a top score of “very strong.” It stamps its lowest grade individually on the Army, which it judges “weak.”

The report also says the US military needs to be about one-third larger.

The reason The Heritage Foundation feels the US is weak militarily seems to be that they are considering the need to control every portion of the world simultaneously including fighting a major #War at the same time without any help from allies.