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Iraq War Cost: $2b a Week

Posted on Sep 28, 2006

That’s the word from a new congressional report, which tallies the spending at $379 billion in total, or 20% more than last year, as we spend more and more on establishing long-term bases in the area.

Boston Globe:

WASHINGTON—A new congressional analysis shows the Iraq war is now costing taxpayers almost $2 billion a week—nearly twice as much as in the first year of the conflict three years ago and 20 percent more than last year—as the Pentagon spends more on establishing regional bases to support the extended deployment and scrambles to fix or replace equipment damaged in combat.

The upsurge occurs as the total cost of military operations at home and abroad since 2001, including the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, will top half a trillion dollars, according to an internal assessment by the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service completed last week.

The spike in operating costs—including a 20 percent increase over last year in Afghanistan, where the mission now costs about $370 million a week—comes even though troop levels in both countries have remained stable. The reports attribute the rising costs in part to a higher pace of fighting in both countries, where insurgents and terrorists have increased their attacks on US and coalition troops and civilians.


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By Mike - A High School Economics teacher, September 28, 2006 at 1:22 pm Link to this comment
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Adam Smith (In the Wealth of Nations)questioned the economic logic of borrowing money to fight wars.  In the short term her worried about the inflation that might occur if a federal government tried to cut the resulting public debt by lowering the value of currency.  He also worried about the lack of public attention if there were no immediate fiscal consequences.

In the long term he worried that the wealthy (merchants in his world) would buy the debt and gain more wealth at the expense of future National prosperity.  He also worried that a nation would be tied to the money loaned to it by foreign investors.  Future generations would pay with a lowered standard of living and diminishing prospects.

I find it strange that The Wealth of Nations is used to support inactive government (which it did not) but never referenced in regard to the public debt and wars.  Is this part of the plan to keep us ignorant and controlled?  Doesn’t anybody study anymore?

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