Iraq was for US; Libya is for Europe. Spoils of War (Cartoon by Dave Brown; publication date - 26 August 2011; source - independent.co.uk). Click for larger image.
Whatever number you use for the war’s total cost, it will tower over costs that normally seem prohibitive. Right now, including everything, the war is costing about $200 billion a year.
Treating heart disease and diabetes, by contrast, would probably cost about $50 billion a year. The remaining 9/11 Commission recommendations — held up in Congress partly because of their cost — might cost somewhat less. Universal preschool would be $35 billion. In Afghanistan, $10 billion could make a real difference. At the National Cancer Institute, annual budget is about $6 billion.
“This war has skewed our thinking about resources,” said Mr. Wallsten, a senior fellow at the Progress and Freedom Foundation, a conservative-leaning research group. “In the context of the war, $20 billion is nothing.”
As it happens, $20 billion is not a bad ballpark estimate for the added cost of Mr. Bush’s planned surge in troops. By itself, of course, that price tag doesn’t mean the surge is a bad idea. If it offers the best chance to stabilize Iraq, then it may well be the right option.
But the standard shouldn’t simply be whether a surge is better than the most popular alternative — a far-less-expensive political strategy that includes getting tough with the Iraqi government. The standard should be whether the surge would be better than the political strategy plus whatever else might be accomplished with the $20 billion.
This time, it would be nice to have that discussion before the troops reach Iraq. (via What $1.2 Trillion Can Buy – NYTimes.com).
Talk is not cheap
Discussion with whom, David?
I presume, not with the invadee nation? In this case, the Iraqi people. You are justifying discussions in the US Congress, between US political parties, by US bureaucrats, with the US President …
About the future of other people. People who have nothing to do with the US. In this case the Iraqi people.
Coming to cost of this war. The primary education, the higher education, the medical research that you want funds for, will come from the graves of the Iraqi people. Like the Nordhaus report that you refer to, says,
Iraq’s oil resources could satisfy current U.S. oil imports for almost a century.
So, this money you want for primary or higher education, for medical research will come directly as a result of the nearly 1 million undocumented and estimated Iraqis dead or the documented 100,000 Iraqis dead. The number does not matter, because they are both huge numbers.
Or is it that Iraqis don’t count?
Altar of bones
I do hope that this education and this medical research benefits Americans. Otherwise, what would you tell those Iraqis who died? That they died in vain? That no one befitted from their death?
We cant have that, can we?