The 15 Weakest Militaries in the World

Everyone is always talking about who the most powerful militaries on the planet are, but no one brings up the world’s weakest military. Global Fire Power issues a list every year ranking the world’s most powerful militaries. Everyone knows that the United States is always listed at the top.

The rankings from Global Fire Power are evaluated over 50 different factors, to determine who has the greatest firepower out of any military. All those factors allow for an accurate assessment of 133 different countries’ military strength. We’ll give you the quick take on each military power based on how many personnel, aircraft, armored vehicles, naval vessels, and what size of a budget (in USD) each country has to work with. You may be surprised by what country made No. 1. 

For perspective, here is the New York City Police Department

On its own, the NYPD would be an impressive military. | Janifest/iStock/Getty Images

If we made the New York Police Department a military, this would be a basic breakdown of what that military looks like in real life. The 15 countries listed at the bottom of the list couldn’t even beat the NYPD in a war.

Defense budget: $5.6 Billion

Military personnel: 51,000

Airpower: Approximately 12 aircraft

Armor power: Approximately 9,000 vehicles 

Naval power: Approximately 36 watercraft

Next:  Take a look at how all of these countries stack up against New York’s finest.

15. Madagascar

Madagascan soldiers | Alexander Joe/AFP/Getty Images)

Defense budget: $56 million

Military personnel: 21,600

Airpower: 20 aircraft

Armor power: 132 units

Naval power: 8 watercraft

Next: This country has only had three presidents since it’s independence in 1960.

14. Gabon

Gabon’s soldiers | Xavier Bourgois/AFP/Getty Images

Defense budget: $81.52 million

Military personnel: 4,850

Airpower: 33 aircraft

Armor power: 280

Naval power: 10 watercraft

Next: The United States helped stop a genocide in this country in the 1990’s.

13. Bosnia and Herzegovina

Abandoned tank in Bosnian mountains | Getty Images

Defense budget: $250 million

Military personnel: 12,750

Airpower: 31 aircraft

Armor power: 414 units

Naval power: 0 watercraft

Next: There was once a great ruler from this country that everyone knows.

12. Macedonia

Macedonian Military | David Greedy/Getty Images

Defense budget: $108 million

Military personnel: 24,055

Airpower: 32 aircraft

Armor power: 529 units

Naval power: 0 watercraft

Next: For a country with some of the world’s best rum, you’d think they’d fight more.

11. Dominican Republic

Dominican Republic soldier |  Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Defense budget: $110.85 million

Military personnel: 65,925

Airpower: 58 aircraft

Armor power: 46 units

Naval power: 33 watercraft

Next: This country went from being a protectorate to occupied, to free, to colonized, to independent in one decade.

10. Laos

Laotian soldiers | Pornchai Kittiwowngsakul/AFP/Getty Images

Defense budget: $18.5 million

Military personnel: 130,000

Airpower: 64 aircraft

Armor power: 389 units

Naval power: 97 watercraft

Next: The next country is known as the land of volcanoes.

9. El Salvador

Salvadorian soldiers | Thomas Coex/AFP/Getty Images

Defense budget: $165 million

Military personnel: 47,000

Airpower: 52 aircraft

Armor power: 193 units

Naval power: 7 watercraft

Next: They’re more well known for their waterway than their military.

8. Panama

Panamanian troops | Rodrigo Arangua/AFP/Getty Images

Defense budget: $145 million

Military personnel: 34,000

Airpower: 25 aircraft

Armor power: 65 units

Naval power: 20 watercraft

Next: This is one of the least densely populated countries in the world. 

7. Namibia

Namibian Special Police Forces | STR/AFP/Getty Images

Defense budget: $120 million

Military personnel: 15,500

Airpower: 31 aircraft

Armor power: 137 units

Naval power: 8 watercraft

Next: This place is pretty well known for its pirates.

6. Somalia

Somalian soldiers | Andrew Renneisen/Getty Images

Defense budget: $59 million

Military personnel: 15,900

Airpower: 25

Armor power: 800 units

Naval power: 14 watercraft

Next: This country is rich in diamonds, gold, and oil, but it has one of the poorest populations on Earth.

5. The Central African Republic

Soldiers in the Central African Republic | Marco Longari/AFP/Getty Images

Defense budget: $18.5 million

Military personnel: 5,825

Airpower: 6 aircraft

Armor power: 79 units

Naval power: 0 watercraft

Next: This country is stuck between the ocean and a desert.

4. Mauritania

Mauritanian soldiers | Habibou Kouyate/AFP/Getty Images

Defense budget: $39 million

Military personnel: 20,870

Airpower: 45 aircraft

Armor power: 300 units

Naval power: 5 watercraft

Next: This country is well known for their diamonds … and it’s not in a good way.

3. Sierra Leone

Corporal Anthony Hyde trains Sierra Leone’s soldiers 01 December 2000 in Benguema Training Camp. | Alexander Joe/AFP/Getty Images

Defense budget: $13 million

Military personnel: 10,750

Airpower: 7 aircraft

Armor power: 12 units

Naval power: 10 watercraft

Next: The official language of this South American country is Dutch.

2. Suriname

Military truck in Suriname | Getty Images

Defense budget: $67.5 million

Military personnel: 2,270

Airpower: 3 aircraft

Armor power: 40 units

Naval power: 3 watercraft

Next: This is the weakest military on the planet.

1. Bhutan

King of Bhutan, Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchukinspects the Guard of Honour during the welcome ceremony at the Presidential Palace, 2013. | Raveendran/AFP/Getty Images

Defense budget: $10 million

Military personnel: 7,500

Airpower: 7 aircraft

Armor power: 10 units

Naval power: 0 watercraft

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