Poster by the GCOMS campaign of a tank with flowers growing out of it. There is a large sun in the background and a humming bird drinking from one of the flowers

 ➡️ GCOMS - Global Campaign on Military Spending

GCOMS is an international initiative that aims to raise awareness and advocate for a significant reduction in military spending worldwide. Its primary objectives include redirecting military expenditure towards social and environmental needs, promoting transparency and accountability in defence budgets, and fostering global disarmament.

GCOMS operates under the belief that excessive military spending detracts from vital resources that could otherwise address pressing global challenges such as poverty, education, healthcare, and climate crisis.

More than 100 organisations from 35 different countries have joined the campaign which is promoted by the International Peace Bureau (IPB) and Centre Delàs of Peace Studies.

A major focal point of the organisation is the annual spring campaign ➡️ GDAMS - Global Days of Action on Military Spending. The event coincides with the release of the annual SIPRI Report on global military spending, Earth Day, Europe Day, International Workers' Day, and the C7 Summit which confronts the G7 on issues such as sustainability, peace, and social justice.

For comprehensive insight to related topics please explore our guides to Military, the Arms Trade, and Disarmament.

In the words of former Secretary-General of the UN,

"The world is over-armed and peace is under-funded."


Poster from GCOMS with the quote 'International security must rest on a commitment to joint survival rather than a threat of mutual destruction.' The poster is red and there is an image of a father and son in the background

GCOMS has had a notable impact on the discourse surrounding global military spending, bringing the issue to the forefront of many policy discussions. Through its advocacy and awareness campaigns, it has contributed to increased public scrutiny of defence budgets and encouraged some governments to reconsider their military allocations.

In more recent years the campaign has put a special emphasis on the climate crisis, highlighting the connection between environmental destruction and militarisation. Militaries themselves are one of the world’s biggest consumers of fuel contributing 5.5 percent of all global CO2 emissions.

Not only is it a direct cause of climate change, but increasing competition for resources such as fertile land and fresh water is causing large scale disruption to populations which exacerbates current conflicts, and fuels new ones.

Despite the efforts of excellent campaigns such as GCOMS, global military spending continues to rise. In 2023, the world military budget blew past the $2.4 trillion mark for the first time ever. The time for a peace budget is now.

A peace-first approach would not only lower military burdens, it would reduce suffering, promote greater sustainability, and allow governments to finance desperately underfunded sectors such as education and healthcare.

Author: Rachael Mellor, 22.04.24 licensed under CC BY-ND 4.0

For further reading on GCOMS see below  ⬇️

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