United States Military - 2022


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Military and security forces

United States Armed Forces (aka US Military): US Army (USA), US Navy (USN; includes US Marine Corps or USMC), US Air Force (USAF), US Space Force (USSF); US Coast Guard (USCG); National Guard (Army National Guard and Air National Guard) (2022)

note 1: the US Coast Guard is administered in peacetime by the Department of Homeland Security, but in wartime reports to the Department of the Navy

note 2:
 the Army National Guard and the Air National Guard are reserve components of their services and operate in part under state authority; the US military also maintains reserve forces for each branch (US Army Reserve, US Navy Reserve, US Air Force Reserve, and US Coast Guard Reserve)

Military expenditures

3.5% of GDP (2022 est.)

3.6% of GDP (2021)

3.7% of GDP (2020)

3.4% of GDP (2019) (approximately $730 billion)

3.3% of GDP (2018) (approximately $685 billion)

Military and security service personnel strengths

approximately 1.39 million active duty personnel (475,000 Army; 345,000 Navy; 335,000 Air Force (includes about 8,000 Space Force); 180,000 Marine Corps; 40,000 Coast Guard); 335,000 Army National Guard; 105,000 Air National Guard (2022)

Military equipment inventories and acquisitions

the US military's inventory is comprised almost entirely of domestically-produced weapons systems (some assembled with foreign components) along with a smaller mix of imported equipment from a variety of Western countries; since 2010, Germany and the UK have been the leading suppliers of military hardware; the US defense industry is capable of designing, developing, maintaining, and producing the full spectrum of weapons systems; the US is the world's leading arms exporter (2021)

Military service age and obligation

18 years of age (17 years of age with parental consent) for voluntary service for men and women; no conscription (currently inactive, but males aged 18-25 must register with Selective Service in case conscription is reinstated in the future); maximum enlistment age 34 (Army), 39 (Air Force), 39 (Navy), 28 (Marines), 31 (Coast Guard); 8-year service obligation, including 2-5 years active duty (Army), 2 years active duty (Navy), 4 years active duty (Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard); all military occupations and positions open to women (2022)

note: in 2020, women comprised 17.2 % of the total US military (16.9% of enlisted; 18.9% officers; highest was Air Force with women comprising 21.1% of its total personnel); a small number of American women were involved in combat during the Revolutionary (1775-1783), Mexican (1846-1848), and Civil (1861-1865) Wars, but they had to disguise themselves as men and enlist under aliases; the first official US military organization for women was the US Army Nurse Corps, established in 1901; during World War I, the US Navy and Marine Corps allowed women to enlist; nearly 350,000 women served in the US military during World War II; the 1991 Gulf War was the first war where women served with men in integrated units within a war zone; in 2015, women were allowed to serve in direct combat roles

note 2: non-citizens living permanently and legally in the US may join as enlisted personnel; must have permission to work in the US, a high school diploma, and speak, read, and write English fluently; minimum age of 17 with parental consent or 18 without; maximum age 29-39, depending on the service; under the US Nationality Act, honorable service in the military may qualify individuals to obtain expedited citizenship; under the Compact of Free Association, citizens of the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of Palau, and the Republic of the Marshall Islands may volunteer; under the Jay Treaty, signed in 1794 between Great Britain and the US, and corresponding legislation, Native Americans/First Nations born in Canada are entitled to freely enter the US and join the US military

Military deployments

5,000 Africa (mostly in Djibouti, with approximately 700-1,000 in other countries of East Africa and about 700 in West Africa); 1,700 Australia; 250 Diego Garcia; 150 Canada; 650 Cuba (Guatanamo Bay); 290 Egypt (MFO); approximately 100,000 Europe (Belgium, Bulgaria, Germany, Greece, Italy, Kosovo, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Turkey, UK); 150 Greenland; 6,200 Guam; 370 Honduras; 56,000 Japan; approximately 15,000 Middle East (Bahrain, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Syria, United Arab Emirates); 125 Philippines; 28,000 South Korea; 200 Singapore; 100 Thailand (2022)

note: US military rotational policies affect deployment numbers; the US deploys ground and air units to select countries for 6-12 month rotational assignments on a continuous basis; in South Korea, for example, the US continuously rotates combat brigades (approximately 3,000 personnel) for 9 months at a time; contingencies also affect US troop deployments; in 2019-2020, the US deployed more than 15,000 additional military personnel to the Middle East for an extended period of time and in 2022, it sent more than 30,000 reinforcements to Europe in response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine; in addition, some overseas US naval bases, such as the headquarters of US Naval Forces Central Command (USNAVCENT) in Manama, Bahrain, are frequented by the crews of US ships on 6-9 month deployments; a US carrier strike group with an air wing and supporting ships typically includes over 6,000 personnel

Military - note

the US is a member of NATO and was one of the original 12 countries to sign the North Atlantic Treaty (also known as the Washington Treaty) in 1949

the US military has 11 regional- or functionally-based joint service "combatant" commands: Africa Command; Central Command, Cyber Command, European Command, Indo-Pacific Command, Northern Command, Southern Command, Space Command, Special Operations Command, Strategic Command, and Transportation Command

Congress officially created the US military in September 1789; the US Army was established in June 1775 as the Continental Army; after the declaration of independence in July 1776, the Continental Army and the militia in the service of Congress became known collectively as the Army of the United States; when Congress ordered the Continental Army to disband in 1784, it retained a small number of personnel that would form the nucleus of the 1st American Regiment for national service formed later that year; both the US Navy and the US Marines were also established in 1775, but the Navy fell into disuse after the Revolutionary War, and was reestablished by Congress in 1794; the first US military unit devoted exclusively to aviation began operations in 1913 as part of the US Army; the Army Air Corps (AAC) was the US military service dedicated to aerial warfare between 1926 and 1941; the AAC became the US Army Air Forces in 1941 and remained as a combat arm of the Army until the establishment of the US Air Force in 1947

NOTE: The information regarding United States on this page is re-published from the 2022 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency and other sources. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of United States 2022 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about United States 2022 should be addressed to the CIA or the source cited on each page.

This page was last modified 01 Dec 23, Copyright © 23 ITA all rights reserved.