The ranking of the top military powers in the world can vary depending on the criteria used to measure military strength. Here are the top 5 countries with the largest military sizes (active military personnel) in the world as of 2023:
- United States
- North Korea
- China has the largest standing army in the world, with an estimated 2.3 million active personnel. China has the second-largest defence budget in the world after the United States. China possesses an estimated 350 nuclear warheads, and has a “no first use” policy regarding nuclear weapons.
- United States Army has over 1 million soldiers on active duty, making it the second largest military in the world after China. The U.S. Army has a budget of approximately $174 billion for the fiscal year 2022, making it the largest branch of the U.S. military in terms of budget. The U.S. Army has troops deployed in over 150 countries around the world, including combat operation.
- India has the second largest standing army in the world and is considered to be a major military power in Asia. India has over 1.4 million active duty soldiers, making it the second largest standing army in the world after China. India’s defence budget for 2021-2022 was approximately $65.2 billion, making it the third largest military spender in the world after the United States and China. The Indian Army is deployed in various parts of the country, including along the borders with Pakistan and China, as well as in United Nations peacekeeping missions.
- North Korea has an estimated 1.2 million active duty soldiers, making it one of the largest standing armies in the world. North Korea does not disclose its military budget, but it is believed to be one of the highest in the world relative to the size of its economy.
- Russia has an estimated 1 million active duty soldiers, making it one of the largest standing armies in the world. Russia has a defence budget of approximately $65.1 billion for the year 2021, making it the fourth largest military spender in the world after the United States, China, and India. Russia has troops deployed in various parts of the world, including in Syria to support the government in the Syrian civil war. Russia has a significant navy, with a number of advanced warships and submarines, and it is currently in the process of modernizing and expanding its fleet.
It’s worth noting that while active military personnel is an important measure of military size, it’s not the only factor that determines military strength. Other factors such as the size of the armed forces, military budget, number of weapons and equipment, and technological advancements also play important roles. Other military powers in the world are Pakistan, Iran, South Korea, Vietnam, Egypt.