As the saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words.
Above is a visualization of the biggest military budgets in 2009 compiled by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI). (source: Russian Sphinx) The colors have no significance aside from making each country’s name more distinguishable. Remember, this is for 2009 only, and imagine the cumulative effect of this over decades.
Below are 2009 military expenditures per capita in U.S. dollars by country. (source: Wikipedia, deriving from SIPRI’s 2010 Yearbook) One way to look at this statistic is a form of security tax or safety insurance each person pays in their respective countries. I have refrained from analysis, because these facts stand on their own as references (especially since we talk a good deal about geopolitics and ‘democracy’).
|United Arab Emirates||2009||2,653|