According to a new report released April 26 by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), world military expenditure rose to nearly $2 trillion in 2020, an increase of 2.6 percent, in real terms, from 2019. The COVID-19 pandemic, which brought the world to a virtual standstill for the last 14 months, apparently has had no impact on military spending. Ironically, four of the five biggest spenders were permanent members of the UN Security Council, namely the US, China, Russia, and the UK. The latest figures of rising arms expenditures by some of the big powers make a mockery of the UN’s longstanding pleas for cutbacks and diversion of funds from the military into sustainable development.