It’s always fun to sit around and war-game which country could beat up which, and it’s even better when you have hard facts to back up your arguments.
Below is a summary of the top ten militaries in the world, according to Global Firepower, which tracks military power through publicly-available sources. We’ve scrapped Global Firepower naval comparisons since they track naval strength by number of ships, making a patrol boat equal to a supercarrier. This list of the largest navies by weight is being used instead.
Below the spreadsheet we’ve added a breakdown of each military’s power:
We Are The Mighty
1. United States of America
No real surprise here. The US spends $577 billion on defense per year, nearly four times more than China’s $145 billion budget. The US is behind both India and China on all measures of manpower but makes up for it with vastly superior airpower and a carrier fleet larger than anyother country’s entire navy.
America’s Cold War rival still packs a major punch.
Its high ranking is fueled by superior armor numbers. Russia also fields a large navy and is one of the world’s largest oil producers. Russia ranks fourth for number of military personnel, but its numbers are padded by short-term conscripts.
It suffers though due to a large amount of oil consumption relative to its small amount of oil production.
Interestingly, India’s Border Force is the only modern military force that maintains a camel-mounted regiment.
5. United Kingdom
Sgt Rupert Frere RLC
Despite a small tank force, low number of aircraft, and a low number of military personnel, the United Kingdom maintains a spot in the top five with the world’s fifth –largest navy and fifth-highest military budget.
The British military is also aided by geography as it’s hard for an invading force to attack an island.
France doesn’t post up the most impressive numbers of ships, planes, and tanks, but what equipment it has is modern and very capable.
France also manufacturers much of its own military supplies, meaning it has the ability to keep arming itself during a protracted war.
7. South Korea
Its largest threat is North Korea which, despite having the largest navy by number of ships, is actually weaker than the numbers suggests due to antiquated equipment and undertrained personnel.
Germany got a decent rank on Global Firepower and a great one at National Interest due to a strong economy, military spending, and good training.
However, news coming out of Germany suggests its position may be weaker than it appears on paper. It consumes much more oil than it produces, and its imports come from Russia, its most likely adversary. Germany’s ability to weather an oil shortage is also decreasing as it moves away from coal and nuclear power.
Also, it’s facing a major problem with its standard rifle.
Japan would be ranked higher if its people had a greater appetite for war.
The sixth-largest military spender, it has the fifth-largest air fleet and the fourth-largest navy. Still, a lackluster ground game drags it down and its constitution limits the military’s ability to project force worldwide.
An expanded military industry bodes well for Turkey’s military.