Who America Sells Guns To

A few weeks ago, the Congressional Research Service (CRS) published a report that disclosed who America sells arms to. 

For clarification, the CRS is a division of the Library of Congress dedicated to providing non-partisan research, analysis, and information to assist Congress in its legislative, oversight, and representative functions. 

The report, “U.S. Arms Sales: Agreements with and Deliveries to Major Clients, 2003-2010,” pooled Pentagon info from 2003-2010 and shows who our top customers are. 

Richard F. Grimmet, the author of the report and a Specialist in International Security explained more, “This report provides background data on U.S. arms sales agreements with and deliveries to its major purchasers during calendar years 2003-2010, made through the U.S. Foreign Military Sales (FMS) program.”

“In a series of data tables, it lists the total dollar values of U.S. government to-government arms sales agreements with its top five purchasers, and the total dollar values of U.S. arms deliveries to those purchasers, in five specific regions of the world for three specific periods: 2003-2006, 2007-2010, and 2010 alone” Grimmet stated in the report.

So, who are our top buyers?  Table 12 gives the aggregate total over those years:

As mentioned, there are other tables that give a breakdown per region.

Africa:

Near East:

Europe: 

“The intent here is to complement that elaborate worldwide treatment of the international arms trade by focusing exclusively on U.S. arms sales and deliveries, and providing the names of the major U.S. arms customers, by region, together with the total dollar values of their arms purchases or deliveries for the calendar years 2003-2006, 2007-2010, and 2010,” the report stated.

While that might be the intent, the broader implications of the report are revealing.  To give one an obvious example, over that seven-year period (2003-2010) the Egyptian Government, which was headed by the despotic Hosni Mubarak, spent a world-topping $10.3 billion on U.S. weapons. 

Israel was our number two customer spending $9.8 billion over that same period of time; Saudi Arabia came in at number three with $9.5 billion, Taiwan in fourth with $7.1 billion and Greece in fifth with $5.5 billion. 

This report certainly begs the question: are we selling weapons to all the right countries?