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Update: World War Three – Who wins?

World War Three – Who wins?

World War Three: World War 3 armies REVEALED – Who would win in all out conflict with North Korea?

TENSIONS in North Korea could risk dragging Russia, China, Japan, South Korea and the USA into all out conflict – but who has the most powerful military?

North Korean military tests have made tensions in the Pacific skyrocket – with young despotKim Jong-un testing inter-continental ballistic missiles capable of reaching the US and hydrogen bombs five times more powerful than the last nuclear weapon to have been used in a war zone.

Meanwhile, Donald Trump’s threats to rain “fire and fury” on the Korean peninsula have stoked the flames of conflict that risk igniting World War 3.

And with Japan and South Korea aligned with the west along with Russian and Chinese interests in Kim Jong-un’s hermit kingdom, conflict in the region risks dragging the world’s superpowers into a furious fire fight.

But who has the most powerful military of them all?


North Korea has the second largest army of any country in the region – with 1.02 million military personnel ready to fight.

The military is believed to make up almost four per cent of the hermit kingdom’s population.

They also have more submarines than countries who could be dragged into a third world war, boasting 73 in total.

But they fall behind in other military hardware, with only 286 helicopters and three warships.

Kim Jong-un also has access to 4,060 tanks, vastly outnumbering the military makeup of his southern neighbours.

He also commands 545 combat jets, significantly fewer than China or the US.


The USA, despite commanding one of the planet’s most effective militaries and spending the most of any potentially involved nation, has just 409,000 active military personnel.

This gives the US military fewer fighters than both North and South Korea despite spending $611.2billion (£459.4 billion) on defence.

However, they also command the most helicopters (5,437) and warships (88) when compared to other states who could be dragged up to fight.

Despite this, they have 2,384 tanks, far fewer than North Korea, as well as fewer submarines (71).

But their 1,442 combat jets could prove a formidable force in all out warfare.


The Chinese army stands at more than three times the size of the USA’s, boasting 1.6 million military personnel with an estimated expenditure of $215.2billion (£161.7billion).

They also have access to the most tanks (7,190) and combat jets (2,306) in the world making them a formidable force.

Meanwhile, their 73 warships and 61 submarines could offer deadly support in the event of a conflict, while their 1,069 helicopters are only bested by the US.


Russia command the largest land mass in the world, bordering both Finland and North Korea making it an incredibly difficult place to invade during the winter across the course of human history – with an exception being made for the Mongols in 1223.

But their modern day military is smaller than neighbouring superpower China, with Vladimir Putin’s military being made up of just 240,000 personnel with an expenditure of $69.2billion (£46.6billion).

While not a world leader when it comes to military hardware, they still command a significant force with 2,700 tanks, 1,090 combat jets and 854 helicopters.

Putin also has access to 34 warships, and 62 submarines.


Decades of bordering the warmongering North has forced the south to significantly ramp up their military capabilities compared to similarly small nations.

Spending $36.8billion (£27.6billion) on the military, they command 495,000 troops in the region.

And their major equipment includes more tanks than the US, with the Moon administration overseeing 2,418 on South Korean soil.

Meanwhile, they command 556 combat jets, 23 warships, 23 submarines and 602 helicopters to hold back the risk of conflict with Kim Jong-un.


Japan has been largely dependent on the US military since World War Two, only establishing the Japanese Self Defence Forces in 1954 when then-US president Dwight D. Eisenhower was forced to move troops onto mainland Asia after North Korea invaded the south.

The rise of Kim Jong-un has sparked furious debate on Japan’s military capabilities, but meanwhile, they command one of the smallest militaries in the region.

Spending slightly more than South Korea with $46.1billion (£34.6billion), Japanese forces number just 151,000.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe can call on 688 tanks, 557 combat jets and 589 tanks.

The forces also contain 18 submarines and 44 warships.

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