Bonn International Institute of Conversion (BICC) published its latest “Global militarization Index” for the current year. According to it, Belarus ranks 16th in the world in terms of militarization. This ranking has been compiled by BICC since 1990 and is based on data from 149 countries. Countries are ranked according to several criteria, including the share of defense spending in the total gross domestic product, compared to military spending with other social and public spending, and more. At the same time, on closer examination of the rating, it seems that the method of its compilation is at least imperfect.
Thus, Belarus ranks 16th in the list of most militarized countries, Ukraine is 20th. Belarus spends 1.3-1.4% of its GDP for defense issues, while Ukraine — 2.7-2.8%. U.S. takes 30th place, spends 4.8% of GDP for defense and has the largest military budget in the world. At the same time, more than a quarter of the U.S. national budget is spent on the military issues and the conduct of military operations. Aggressive Belarusian regime wants to spend for defense as much as 4% of the national budget in the coming year!
According to Bonn researchers, even more peaceful than the U.S. (38th place) is Colombia, where since 1964 (!) the government has been waging a bloody war against the Marxist rebels and drug cartels. By the way, the Colombian armed forces and security forces are not only very big pacifists, but just very big. They are considered to be among the largest forces in the world.
Germany’s (81th place according to the BIIC rating) spending for defense is comparable to our country’s in terms of GDP percent, which is…. 60 times larger in absolute terms. And Germany has been waging a war in Afghanistan for ten years. According to BICC, the latter does not prevent the Germans from being included in the number of less militarized countries during these ten years. So, we may give advice but we cannot give conduct.
Neighboring Poland dedicates to defense 1.9% of GDP, which is 13 times more than Belarus in absolute numbers. However, nobody suspects Warsaw in militarism.
Against the background of Germany’s 81st place the appreciation by BICC of pacifism of China, given 83rd place, looks really fabulous. The stunning result was achieved against the background of the largest army in the world, the second largest military budget in the world, poorly hidden (or not hidden) territorial claims to all of its neighbors, threats against Taiwan, the occupation of Tibet and the bloody suppression of the liberation movement of the Uighurs!
But wait for more! Insidious Belarus made another decisive step to maintain its status of one the most militant countries: on December 1, 2012, quietly and without fanfare, fighter-interceptors Su-27 were decommissioned from Belarusian Army. The aircraft are worn out, but there are no money for the new ones, despite the extreme “militarization” of our country. And no money is expected in this field.
In general, looking at the “Global militarization Index”, it seems that during its creation the authors have been guided by their imagination and a couple of stereotypes. It’s interesting, whether BICC experts are able even to find our country on the map.