Study: Iraq War Cost U.S. $2.2 Trillion, Claimed Nearly 200,000 Lives

By Ben Armbruster posted from ThinkProgress Security on Mar 14, 2013 at 6:24 pm


A new report by the “Costs of War” project at Brown University’s Watson Institute for International Studies finds that nearly 200,000 people, including soldiers and civilians, were killed in the war in Iraq President George W. Bush launched 10 years ago.

The report also found that American taxpayers will ultimately spend roughly $2.2 trillion on the war, but because the U.S. government borrowed to finance the conflict, interest payments through the year 2053 means that the total bill could reach nearly $4 trillion.

“Nearly every government that goes to war underestimates its duration, neglects to tally all the costs, and overestimates the political objectives that will be accomplished by war’s violence,” said Boston University professor of political science and project co-director Neta C. Crawford.

Indeed, the war devastated the Iraqi health care system and allowed militants to hone their skills and export them to neighboring conflicts:

  • Terrorism in Iraq increased dramatically as a result of the invasion and tactics and fighters were exported to Syria and other neighboring countries.
  • Iraq’s health care infrastructure remains devastated from sanctions and war. More than half of Iraq’s medical doctors left the country during the 2000s, and tens of thousands of Iraqi patients are forced to seek health care outside the country.

The Watson Institute project — which involves “30 economists, anthropologists, lawyers, humanitarian personnel, and political scientists from 15 universities, the United Nations, and other organizations” — comes on the heals of the Special Inspector-General for Iraq Reconstruction’s final report released last week finding that the U.S. spent $60 billion on reconstruction efforts in Iraq and that $10 billion of it was wasted on fraud and abuse.

Reuters reported that Steven Bucci, the military assistant to former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld in the run-up to the war and today a senior fellow at the Heritage Foundation, didn’t dispute the report’s findings but said the U.S.’s post-invasion battles with al-Qaeda in Iraq — a group that did not exist prior to March 19, 2003 — made the war worth it.

“It was really in Iraq that ‘al Qaeda central’ died,” Bucci said. “They got waxed.”

Meanwhile, the AP reported this afternoon that “a string of explosions tore through central Baghdad within minutes of each other on Thursday, followed by what appeared to be a coordinated assault by gunmen who battled security forces in the Iraqi capital.” The AP said the attack — which reportedly killed 12 people — “bore the hallmarks of Al Qaeda’s Iraq arm.”

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Replies to This Discussion

Can you link the story here booklover?

I would love to Steph, but I don't know where I saw it, and I don't know how to link things!  lol Maybe it can be Googled?!

Dick Cheney Admits He Lied In 9/11 Testimony

BREAKING: Dick Cheney Has Change of Heart, Admits to 9/11

Cheney Admits that He Lied about 9/11

Dick Cheney Admits To Use Of Torture

Dick Cheney committing & confessing treason

Dick Cheney Admits Osama Bin Laden Was Not Directly Involved In 9/11

Why Was Cheney So Quick to Admit He's a War Criminal?'s_a_war_criminal

Thanks so very much for the links Joan. I will try to read all those.

Chris G, thanks for finding that letter and posting it.  I need to learn how to link things.

Chris G. Unless someone can give evidence otherwise, I think this man is evil to the core, that he has every mark of a psychopath at worst and sociopath at best. I hope I am wrong ... I don't believe in the devil or demonic forces, except in this man's case.


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