I was reading Thomas Friedman’s column on Saudi Arabia and Pakistan this morning and came across this passage:
The Pakistani ruling bargain is set by the Pakistani Army and says: “We let you civilians pretend to rule, but we will actually call all the key shots, we will consume nearly 25 percent of the state budget and we will justify all of this as necessary for Pakistan to confront its real security challenge: India and its occupation of Kashmir. Looking for Bin Laden became a side-business for Pakistan’s military to generate U.S. aid.”
When I read this, I thought, “That’s funny. Isn’t that about the same percentage of overall spending taken up by the U.S. military?” It turns out that the number here in the States is actually closer to 20 percent, although I’m sure that it would creep higher if they added in non-DOD military spending. Readers with expertise in this area, help me out?