Oft-times reading about WW2, we come across "truths" from the perspective of 1939, 1940, and 1941. Such as the "truth" that the Soviet Union was developing far faster than Germany, and that Germany "needed" to strike east (against the USSR) or it would be "lost" (rendered irrelevant). The whole concept of "lebensraum" was a means to provide some kind of economic expansion to improve the lot of Germany In that retrospect (the 1930's "race" between Germany and Russia for domination over Europe) I find it interesting to compare the economic might of both today. Nominally, Russian GDP is less than half of Germany's today, by any of the widely accepted measures (UN, IMF or World bank) Russia spends far more on it's military (5.4% of GDP according to SIPRI), I suppose to maintain it's nuclear arsenal, while Germany spends a mere 1.2% (same source) Yet Germany is the world's 9th largest spender; if they "merely" doubled their spending (and be on par with the average spending globally), they'd exceed Russian spending to the tune of 14 Billion USD, and replace the Russians for 4th, and be very close to the Saudis in military spending. And with their current GDP, they could afford it more than the Russians. I know, expenditure is not a very effective way of measuring capabilities. In total though, looking at their respective economies today, the whole megalomaniacal concept just seems bizarre. Of course Russia has huge Post-Soviet issues they are still dealing with, and will of course in the future rectify these and improve. Peacefully, I hope. In summary; It just goes to show, when an economist tries to tell you that growth rates extend indefinitely into the future, buyer beware.