Determinants of Military Expenditure for Deterrence: Interaction with Nuclear Weapons, Democracies, and Alliances
During his campaign trail, the President-elect announced increasing military expenditure to enable deterrence to maintain the security of the United States. However, limited quantitative research exists to determine if military expenditures effectively support deterrence. Moreover, current research does not estimate if possession of nuclear weapons, a democratic form of government, and alliances contribute to prohibiting militarized conflicts through deterrence. This article examines the determinants of military expenditures and its effects on increased deterrence by analyzing ten countries engaged in deterrence. A regression of military expenditures as the dependent variable establishes a baseline to identify predicted values based on the theories of nuclear deterrence, democracy peace, and free riding of defense burden within alliances. The regression further explores interactions between possession of nuclear weapons and democracies, between democracies and alliances, and between possession of weapons and alliances. Limited results convey that deterrence can be increased with increased military expenditure but at a cost.