Peak Oil is You

Donate Bitcoins ;-) or Paypal :-)

Page added on March 29, 2013

Bookmark and Share

Iraq, Afghan Wars Will Cost to $4 Trillion to $6 Trillion

Iraq, Afghan Wars Will Cost to $4 Trillion to $6 Trillion thumbnail

The U.S. wars in Afghanistan and Iraq will cost taxpayers $4 trillion to $6 trillion, taking into account the medical care of wounded veterans and expensive repairs to a force depleted by more than a decade of fighting, according to a new study by a Harvard researcher.

Washington increased military benefits in late 2001 as the nation went to war, seeking to quickly bolster its talent pool and expand its ranks. Those decisions and the protracted nation-building efforts launched in both countries will generate expenses for years to come, Linda J. Bilmes, a public policy professor, wrote in the report that was released Thursday.

“As a consequence of these wartime spending choices, the United States will face constraints in funding investments in personnel and diplomacy, research and development and new military initiatives,” the report says. “The legacy of decisions taken during the Iraq and Afghanistan wars will dominate future federal budgets for decades to come.”

Bilmes said the United States has spent almost $2 trillion already for the military campaigns in Afghanistan and Iraq. Those costs, she said, are only a fraction of the ultimate price tag. The biggest ongoing expense will be providing medical care and disability benefits to veterans of the two conflicts.

“Historically, the bill for these costs has come due many decades later,” the report says, noting that the peak disbursement of disability payments for America’s warriors in the last century came decades after the conflicts ended. “Payments to Vietnam and first Gulf War veterans are still climbing.”

Spending borrowed money to pay for the wars has also made them more expensive, the study noted. The conflicts have added $2 trillion to America’s debt, representing roughly 20 percent of the debt incurred between 2001 and 2012.

Bilmes’s estimate provides a higher range than another authoritative study on the same issue by Brown University’s Eisenhower Research Project. Brown researchers put the price tag at roughly $4 trillion.

Both figures are dramatically higher than what U.S. officials projected they would spend when they were planning to go to war in Iraq. Stephen Friedman, a senior White House official, left government in 2002 after irking his colleagues by publicly estimating that the Iraq war could end up costing up to $200 billion.

It’s unclear how long Washington will keep paying bills for that conflict, which dragged on for nearly a decade and became deeply unpopular at home and in Iraq. Judging from history, it could take quite awhile. The Associated Press recently found that the federal government is still cutting checks each month to relatives of Civil War veterans nearly 150 years after the end of that war.

Washington Post

12 Comments on "Iraq, Afghan Wars Will Cost to $4 Trillion to $6 Trillion"

  1. GregT on Sat, 30th Mar 2013 12:04 am 

    Americans must really like Muslims a lot, to spend this kind of money to liberate them from their tyrannical governments.

    I guess they don’t like Catholics so much though, because they sure don’t seem to be too concerned with the one hundred thousand Mexicans that have been brutally murdered in the last 6 years.

  2. DC on Sat, 30th Mar 2013 1:47 am 

    I always get a kick out of how amerikans refer to what they do outside there borders as ‘nation-building’. But in the inverted democracy(totalitarian regime) that is the US of A, words mean there exact opposite. The US destroys nations,building them, as if such term even has any meaning, was never on the US’s agenda.

  3. BillT on Sat, 30th Mar 2013 2:27 am 

    Think about how many corporations got a piece of those trillions. Good for the GDP and profits. After all, that is what today’s wars are about, profits. The Empire goes into a democratic country and destroys all of it’s infrastructure. Then corporations follow and ‘rebuilt’ it with million dollar parts. Ten years later, it is crumbling and the contractor has left with the money. Between the Empire and it’s financial minions, the IMF and WB, no country is too small to pillage.

  4. Newfie on Sat, 30th Mar 2013 3:59 am 

    Gawd Bless Amerika.

  5. Arthur on Sat, 30th Mar 2013 10:05 am 

    You cannot invest more in the military than the rest of the planet combined, without having to attemp to get some return on investment. The openly expressed idea was to let the Iraqis pay for the privilige of being invaded themselves! You can’t make this stuff up.

    Paul Wolfowitz, one of the PNAC signatories, and hence one of the conspirators behind 9/11, said on March 27, 2003:

    “”There’s a lot of money to pay for this … the oil revenues of that country could bring between $50 and $100 billion over the course of the next two or three years…We’re dealing with a country that can really finance its own reconstruction, and relatively soon.””

    Mind you, under Saddam Iraq was one of the best functioning countries in the Middle-East, ignoring ghastly human rights records, necessary to keep this multicultural pest hole from exploding, something that happened anyway after the US removed the necessary dictator, as multicultural pest holes can only exist under a dictatorship, see Yugoslavia and Syria and soon the US. So this zionist conspirator Wolfowitz was trying to sell the war to the American taxpayer by lying that the buildup after the inevitable destruction of Iraq would be paid for by Iraqi oil revenues. Well, that did not happen, as the American troops were mainly trapped in the Greenzone, avoiding the effects of grenades lopped into said zone like tennis balls and reluctantly went on patrols outside with high risk of being IED’ed. Meanwhile Sunni’s, Shi’its and Kurds merrily went after each others throats to make sure they would get the best seats in the new emerging Iraqi power structure. Now Iraq is largely ethnically cleansed (Christians kicked out of the country) and democracy makes sure that the largest ethnic group (Shia) is now dominant, making a mockery of the designs the neo-bolshevik NWO crowd in Washington has for the rest of the world, which is and will remain ethnically motivated, not ideologically, certainly in the years of decline ahead. Something Euro-America will find out the hard way once Iraq/Syria/Yugoslavia will come to the streets of the US, the very minute large parts of the US population will find out that the happy days of the American Dream are over. The implosion of the USSR in 1991 will be a cakewalk compared to what is going to happen in the US, as the USSR was not very ethnically mixed.

    Meanwhile the US has saddled itself, thanks to Wolfowitz and his palls, with another 4-6 trillion$ debt, something that will be noticed with glee by geostrategists in Beijing, Moscow and probably even Brussels, who all understand that the geopolitical deck chairs are going to be rearranged.

    History is back, now that play time under Pax Americana, with it’s economic growth, bread and (Hollywood) circuses, is almost over. Not few in the West (how long will that construct and 1945 leftover continue to exist?) will look back on that very comfortable period with nostalgia in 1-2 decades time.

  6. Arthur on Sat, 30th Mar 2013 10:39 am 

    Timeline of the financial side of the Iraq/Afghanistan invasions:

    …and meanwhile not a single 9/11 trial in sight, 12 years after the event, where 9/11 was the beginning of it all.

    KSM is apparently not waterboarded enough yet.

  7. BillT on Sat, 30th Mar 2013 2:44 pm 

    Arthur, you talk as if the EU is not in the same situation as the Us with it’s ethnic diversity. You have even more than in the US. And a population even more dependent on the government teat which is about to get withdrawn, just like in Cyprus.

    I don’t think we have 27 different ethnic groups. Different dialects of the same language yes, but not many different languages. And you are tied to the fate of the Us’ financial system. Just as tight as we are. We are all waiting for the first domino to fall.

  8. Arthur on Sat, 30th Mar 2013 4:19 pm 

    “Arthur, you talk as if the EU is not in the same situation as the Us with it’s ethnic diversity. You have even more than in the US.”

    Not true. US has 60-65% aging Euro’s, where today more than 50% of the babies are non-white.

    EU has 500 million citizens and merely 30 millions muslims, that’s quit a difference. Eastern Europe is completely white, the European desaster areas are Britain, Holland, Belgium and France, with Britain and France the worst affected, witnessing the fairly recent nation wide ethnic uprisings there. It is an open question for me which of these four countries will see the first real clashes. Moreover, Europe has the relative advantages that when clashes will break out, it can be sold as a religious clash, ‘the fight against islamization’, not a nastier race war, unlike the US.

    “I don’t think we have 27 different ethnic groups.”

    These 27 ethnic groups are living largely in their own country, where they do no harm to each other, under a EU roof that prevents them from arms races against each other or other sorts of destructive competition. In fact you in the US originally HAD these 27 ethnic groups itself, but in the US they merged peacefully, enabled precisely because of their common European background. Euro-Americans can pride themselves to be the only real ‘ethnic Europeans’ on this planet.

  9. Simon on Sat, 30th Mar 2013 11:34 pm 

    $4 – $6 Trillion divided by 333 million US population = $12,000 – $18,000 for every man woman and child. Given that only have the population are working tax payers, that works out to $24,000 – $36,000 per tax payer.

    I just want to point that out to you you yahoo red-necks who supported these ward because ‘Muricah and Sadam caused 9/11. I hope you think you got your moneys worth. And don’t ever forget those of us who “told you so” even before it happened and you called us unpatriotic and shouted “support the troops” at us.

    I really hope this makes you as sick as it makes me.

  10. DC on Sun, 31st Mar 2013 2:15 am 

    As the long as the US can continue to get away with forcing the rest of the world to trade in US dollars, then the US can keep printing dollars, in effect, infinite amounts of money and export the inflation to the rest of the world. That is that the war-criminal Rumsfeld meant when he quipped “Deficits dont matter”. Since the whole point of the ‘war’ was to preserve the ability of the US to keep printing dollars to finance its global hegemony, it made sense for them to do just that. It could have been a million dollars or 10 trillion. The US would flood the world with as many debt-dollars as it had to in order to prevent a shift away from the petro-dollar system.

  11. BillT on Sun, 31st Mar 2013 3:00 am 

    Arthur, what is the difference? Religious or color? They will be nasty, bloody and destructive?

    As for The aging…lol. You have a retirement system that is begging to be deleted. You will have to print Euros to prop it up just like the Us only more so. The Us has $14 trillion in the retirement accounts, not counting the Social Security one. Europe’s retirements come mostly from the failing governments.

    You are so Euro-centric, you are denying reality, just like most Americans. You cannot accept that your Europe is going down with the rest of the West. It is and maybe just one step ahead of the Us. One more stunt like Cyprus and you will have bank runs all over the continent and down will come your banking system.

  12. Arthur on Sun, 31st Mar 2013 10:35 am 

    “You are so Euro-centric, you are denying reality, just like most Americans. You cannot accept that your Europe is going down with the rest of the West.”

    Not sure what you mean with ‘euro-centric’… if it means a willingness to defend my civilization, against muslim invaders, Soviets, Chinese, British or even American water carriers for the jews, then yes. But if you had read my posts in the past, you should have known that I know very well that the old industrial ways are over, for ALL major global players, including your Asian heroes.

    Cyprus is 0.2% of EU GDP and is absolutely not indicative for the EU situation as a whole. The only thing that happened is that the streets of Nicosia will no longer be congested with Russian and British crooks driving Maserati’s and Lamborghini’s.

    What really counts is Germany and that country is booming. The largest MSM der Spiegel is expecting a second Wirtschaftswunder between now and 2025:

    They obviously ignore the resource issue, so this is not going to happen, but it also illustrates that the idea that Europe is currently on the brink of collapse, is completely false. The US has 1+ trillion $ structural fiscal deficit and a complete unwillingness to do anything about it and simply print, leading to a global flight out of the dollar, leading to a point where all the dollars eventually will come home, leading to hyperinflation and destabilization and disintegration of the US society.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *