2013 global defense outlook: special ops, mini drones and the rise of small countries

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The Defense Landscape is a weekly conversation with national security experts on the news of the day.

This week, we talk to Jack Midgley, director of Deloitte Consulting.

Deloitte recently finished up its Global Defense Outlook for 2013. The study broke down the military budgets of the the top 50 defense spenders worldwide, who account for 97 percent of all global defense spending.

(Click on the images for a close-up view.)

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The results reveal a shifting military landscape:

  • The traditional big spenders — the U.S., the European Union — are all scaling back spending, hampered by debt from a decade of war and slow economic growth. But small, fast-growing countries are rapidly expanding their military spending

Big Country vs. Small Country military spending

  •  Personnel costs are increasingly dominating military spending as countries move away from traditional tank-on-tank wars and rely more on special ops forces.

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  •  Nuclear weapons are increasingly a non-factor, replaced by cyberwarfare and drones as the big wild card of warfare.

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