So for the sake of easy math, let's call it 20 trillion. One trillion = 1000 billion. The USA currently has 20,000 billion of debt.
U.S. investors hold approximately 2.8 trillion (2800 billion) of the national debt. Another 2/3 is a borrow back from the federal reserve and the social security program.
Bill Moyers (former press secretary to Johnson) reported that China holds 1.24 trillion of our national debt. That's 1240 billion dollars. It's also 30% of the 3.9 trillion dollars (3900 billion) of U.S. debt held by foreign countries.
We are also a debtor to Japan. That country holds 1.13 trillion of our national debt. That's 1130 billion dollars.
There's speculation on what will happen when foreign countries start to call in debt. Some suggest that even a slow sell off will devalue the U.S. dollar. Recall of the U.S. debt is also attached to the balance of world trade.
This post isn't about pointing fingers or assigning blame. It's where we are as a collective group. Maybe it's good practice for all citizens to stay aware of who owes what, to whom, as we move forward into 2017.