The United States’ global arms sales increased by almost $10 billion in 2014, according to a New York Times news story on Christmas Day.
Arms sales increased to $36 billion from $26.7 billion the previous year, making the U.S. the largest provider of weapons.
The second leading provider, Russia, had only $10 billion in sales, down slightly from 2013.
Rounding out the top five global arms merchants were Sweden ($5.5 billion), France ($4.4 billion) and China ($2.2 billion).
The top weapons purchaser was South Korea, followed by Iraq and Brazil.
“American companies account for seven of the top 10 firms, and the other three are European: (1) Lockheed Martin, (2) Boeing, (3) BAE Systems (4), Raytheon (5) Northrop Grumman, (6) General Dynamics, (7) Airbus Group, (8) United Technologies Corp., (9) Finmeccanica, and (10) L-3 Communications,” National Defense blog reported.
Pope Frances condemned the global arms sales in May 2015, calling it “the industry of death.”
Speaking to schoolchildren visiting the Vatican, he said, “Why so many powerful people do not want peace? Because they live off wars!”
“And this is why so many people do not want peace,” the pope said. “They make more money with the war!”