Report: Iraq War could end up costing more than WWII

Report: Iraq War could end up costing more than WWII

War has never been cheap, but it sure is expensive now.

Think about G.I. Joe slugging his way through Europe on K Rations, cigarettes and his M1 Garand, and compare that to today’s forces. As we recently heard from Joint Chiefs chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey, it takes 22 gallons of fuel to support one soldier per day in Afghanistan, up from one gallon per day back in World War II. Today’s troops fly around in helicopters and cargo aircraft; go to fight with advanced electronic equipment; and often can get at least three flavors of ice cream back in the chow hall.

War today is so expensive, in fact, that Iraq alone may wind up costing more than all of World War II, even adjusted for inflation, according to a report quoted by the Christian Science Monitor. Let’s be clear — as with all military math, these numbers could be fuzzier than the dice under your rear-view mirror, because of the many ways you can slice and calculate the data. But it’s probably fair to say they’re at least somewhere in the ballpark of the truth, even though we may never know exactly what the full cost of the past decade has been.

Here’s how David R. Francis put it in the Monitor:

President Obama’s announcement that all US troops will be out of Iraq by year end should mean some drop in ongoing military spending. But the budget relief probably won’t be as much as you might expect. Tragically, beside the financial cost, there is the human toll. The war in Iraq has resulted in some 4,480 US troops killed and more than 32,000 wounded. (The Iraqis have suffered far more fatalities, about 654,965, according to the British medical journal The Lancet.) Thus, ongoing medical and disability claims and treatment of US veterans will boost the costs of the Iraq war even more.

Throw in the replacement of vehicles, weapons, equipment, etc., and the eventual tab for the United States could reach $4 trillion to $6 trillion, according to University of Columbia economist Joseph Stiglitz and Harvard University budget expert Linda Bilmes. Those are big numbers.

They would be on par with the $4.6 trillion the US spent on the recent financial bailouts, according to Barry Ritholtz, CEO of Wall Street research firm Fusion IQ and author of the popular blog The Big Picture. (Another estimate puts the bailout cost at $8.7 trillion.) The sum spent on the Iraq war could pay for a good chunk of Obamacare, professor Bilnes estimates. It’s more than the $3.6 trillion the US spent to fight World War II, even after adjusting for inflation, Mr. Ritholtz estimates.

Washington was not prepared to pay — or even acknowledge — these kinds of costs, Francis writes:

When President George W. Bush launched the war, charging incorrectly that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction, the Pentagon estimated its cost at $50 billion to $60 billion. Economic adviser Lawrence Lindsey got in hot water at the White House when he guessed in public the war could cost as much as $200 billion. One oddity of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars is that even as military preparations were under way, Congress cut taxes in 2001 and again in 2003. These Bush tax cuts meant in effect that the wars were financed by adding to federal debt, rather than paid for from revenues. US outstanding debt zoomed from $5.7 trillion when Mr. Bush took office to $10.6 trillion when he left. And all but $700 billion of that debt was accumulated before the Wall Street bailouts began under the Troubled Asset Relief Program in October 2008.

Francis doesn’t say so, but President Obama and Congress have continued adding to the debt, to the tune of more than $14.8 trillion as of Tuesday afternoon. (You can check the latest numbers here, including your personal share!) That’s the mountain that the “super committee” is tasked to start chipping away by eliminating about $1.2 trillion by Christmas — some of which could come from DoD’s budget.

It’s a depressing analysis: At the end of World War II, the United States emerged as a global superpower and led the world for the rest of the 20th century. As for this year’s planned end of the Iraq War — the jury’s still out.

Join the Conversation

Yeah. The difference is; we won WWII.

This is BS of the worst kind promulgated with those with an agenda.

Its amazing that any THINKING person let alone journalist with think there’s any validity to saying the current war has been more expensive than WWII when the current war calculation takes into account wounded and dead costs and equipment costs while the WWII figure does not!

That “somewhere in the ballpark of the truth” just went out the window Mr Ewing. Why do you keep repeating it? That’s a rhetorical question. My first line is the answer.

Next time, for there will be a next time; have Congress 1– Declare War, 2– Set a goal and a time table for the US military to achieve military victory and then return to the continental US. 3– Have the US State Dept. propose a goal and a time table for political stability and have the US citizens vote on the budget for the State Dept. No more world cop, we can’t afford the S.D. social experiments. The Iraq story would have read 6 months for Iraq military and insurgents and home. The other loss of life and waste of money would have been avoided. 9 1/2 years of peace here in the US and the money in the bank. God Bless the US.

Uhhmm.. the costs might not be exactly greater than or equal to WWII but it’s close. Your average grunt in WWII didn’t have full body armor, UAVs, GPS, comms, etc. I can see the costs of 10 years of operations in two major wars being a significant sum.

The politics of tax cuts or debt or whatever political agenda aside, the basic concept of contemporary war costing more makes sense. What we’ve bought with that increased cost is lower casualty rate, greater lethality and broader capabilities, but that comes with a hefty price tag.

kinda hard to tell considering most of the actual cost in iraq was reconstruction that didnt even start in europe and japan until after the war along with war reppremands and continued presence so I dont think iraq and afghanistan combined come close to WWII (YET).

As with all reports I do not see the medicaland disability claims, for the 75,000 severely wounded, and death benefits for the 3,000 killed in Iraq and Afghanistan working a Civilian Contractors. The US Taxpayer has paid huge insurance benefits and reimburses War Harzard Claims for all those working US Gov Funded Contracts in the War Zones.
The Insurance Companies seldom pay as required so the taxpayer picks up the Social Security, Medicare, many are forced to apply for, as well as a huge increased burden on the VA Medical System

It’s Bush fault

I don’t care how they figure the cost. Just don’t say its equal or more to another war and measure them differently! That’s what this whole story is about and the one that spawned it.

Now ask yourself why? Why measure one war against another but measure them differently? It’s because they can’t support their point, perspective or agenda with a fair comparison. That demonstrates intellectually dishonesty and questionable integrity.

I meant “intellectual dishonesty”

rex — Agree that war is more expensive today but vehemently disagree that WWII and the last ten years costs are even close. If you compare costs (THE SAME WAY) WWII cost around $4tril over 400k lives and almost 700K wounded, GWOT is a little over $1tril, almost 5K lives and a little over 30k wounded.

There’s a reason journalists won’t measure both wars the same or list the numbers. They are counting on people (like you did) to not check and believe them and whatever else follows their skewed argument. DON’T BE FOOLED!

My god. Is there no end to this nightmare debacle? The greatest foreign policy mistake and disaster since Vietnam? Is there no question of the direct link between this black hole for our nation’s wealth and our economic state?

Excuse me? Is there any part of your point that mitigates the much larger truth? that in fact this war was a horrifying boondoggle by any standard of measure. Cost 4000 American lives plus tens of thousands of maimed who will require expensive treatment for the rest of their lives? Not to mention the many hundreds of Iraqi dead–far more than Saddam even killed himself? We will be paying for this disaster for generations. There is no question it is a major contributor to our current economic peril. And FOR WHAT? FOR WHAT!!? And you want to argue whether the factors used to calculate the cost are indeed comparable to WWII cost factors… Meanwhile Iraq continues to bleed us… Oh boy.


I am a lot more concerned about the cost to this country in terms of national treasure and economic health than I am the fine points of “intellectual honesty” in any given article. The larger truth stands and is undeniable.

Where do YOUR numbers come from “major“rod? Consider this: This Iraq fiasco couldn’t even be considered a Theater of Action during WWII.
Try reading the article again. It CLEARLY states: “Thus, ongoing medical and disability claims and treatment of US veterans will boost the costs of the Iraq war even more.” This means those costs weren’t factored in. The costs were just in materiel and supplies. The “agenda” is that you don’t decrease revenues while increasing expenditures, unless you’re a coke fiend.….…ohwait.…forgot. He is/was.

Also what about the Bushy regime saying the war would “only” cost $50-$60 Billion? Or the fact their own guy got in trouble for saying it “might” cost “as much as” $200 Billion?

I’m guessing that MY ability to think is probably about twice what yours is. I don’t see anything wrong with what’s been said in this article, factually speaking. Economically, again, only an idiot decreases income while more than quadrupling spending. And only an idiot believes him or IN him.

Actually, Saddam killed far more than the war or our occupation has.

So what GOP-sponsored website did you get your numbers from “major” (f)rod? You’re most liekly basing your opinion on the actual dollar amount spent, not the adjusted VALUE. But, a thinking person should have known the difference.

Again, try NOT acting like a GOP-lemming and actually give some useful information instead of OPINION. THIS article gave numbers and cited journals and experts. WHERE are YOUR numbers to support your claim? I’ve seen numbers describing the cost of JUST Iraq that make these numbers look like chump-change, but since nothing verifiable was referenced, didn’t believe them. These are more believable than anything the GOP can put together.

IronV, Mike — Thanks for making my point.

Those that want to equate the costs of GWOT as more than WWII have an agenda. Your comments about Bush make that clear. I’m fine if you are against the war or its costs but you needing to lie by saying we’ve spent more than WWII just show how desperate you are to make your point.

Mike — Nope, got my numbers from the above article, the one it refers and Congressional Research Service Report 26 Feb 2010 “American War & Military Operations Casualties: Lists & Statistics”. Might be tough for you to find. You have to be a thinking person.

That’s fine. My comments have to do with the plainly dishonest comparison.

Mr Lib Lemming look above or do some research and educate yourself instead of just sucking up the cool aide.

Yeah. We won the Iraq war you idiot.

The point is that Bin Laden really won. He cost us blood and treasure in Afghanistan, where it all started, and where we are still engaged even though we killed the bastard. Job done. I could care less what happens to the Afghans. Nobody will ever “win” in that country. Not the Brits (kicked out twice) and the Russians.

But Iraq? We were suckered into a war by America’s stupidest president for no good reason which cost us 4,480 guys, 32,000 wounded and a trillion dollars (so far). Once we leave, the Shias and Sunnis will restart their thousand year old religious war, for which we helped arm and train both sides. We didn’t even get the oil. This is a real tragedy. There is no honor in this for America. It is a sad day.

What did we win? How do you define victory?

It’s always expensive to lose. It hardly cost the Iranians anything though.

Ah the good old days when he was out closest bud.

you mean …Haliburton won.!

My sources? The story above, the one it refers to and “American War and Military Operations
Casualties: Lists and Statistics” Congressional Research Service Feb 26 2010. Where did you get yours? The personal attack just showcases the weakeness of your argument and character.

My numbers are from the story and article cited. Losses in both wars are facts easily available. I’m not the lemming but it looks like you went over the cliff drinking the cool aid.

Does the WW2 figure you propose to use include the stationing of troops in both Germany and Japan until at least 1950 when the reason for occupying shifted to the Cold War?

If not you are comparing apples with oranges, because occupying Iraq has been the name of fhe game since mid –2003.

Also why not tell us the cost for the War in Kosovo, which was the reason Russia gave for attacking Geogia — NATO forces are likely to be in Kosovo for much longer than Iraq!

So are you the new Oblat?

Saying it hardly cost the Iranians anything is a statement of pure ignorance…

You try having a WAR in your state that more or less lasts 10yrs and see how you feel about it not costing you much…

As to the war itself it should never have happened…
George Jr simply used fabricated falsehoods in order to finish what his Daddy started but we wouldn’t allow him to finish… George W. will eventually be best known as the” Puppet President “…
Cheney could never have gotten elected President on his own and was pushed into VP slot in order to Use G.W.‘s Charisma and popularity in order to put the Republicans into office…
That and a little Tom Foolery in his Brothers State of Florida…
Tell me with a Straight face that whole thing wasn’t well thought out and planned…

As to the Tax Cuts, well come on, if that wasn’t buying votes then nothing is, lol!

Keep our money here. Foreign aid ?? They hate us anyway. “Sweep in front of your own house and the whole block will be clean ” DUH_Vietnam ’68

Its not a prize fight, its a war, and unless we accepted Imperial Roman notions of war, where we sack and pillage for financial gain, victory in war is only messured in the damage inflicted upon those that would otherwise threaten us.

–Many times more of our enemies, than us, died.
–We established territorial control of the desired geographic region and influence over the established government.
–We removed the leadership of our enemy.
–We significantly reduced our enemies ability to threaten and wage war, and weakened the resolve of others to assist our enemies to fight against us.

Did we spend alot?-Yes; Did we tax the nations political capital?-Yes, but both are the cost of the choice and not a measure of the war’s performance or success.

rgr that. It does peak my interest enough to validate apples-to-apples numbers.

The observation that we didn’t as much out of the Iraq war and that those costs combined with an economic rough spot has put us in a position of weakness in relation to China I still think is a valid one.

You could blame, for instance, our recent kowtowing to China over arms sales to Taiwan entirely on Pres. Obama, but I don’t think another president would have had much choice in the matter either. Not defending POTUS, but recognizing that circumstances.

Lots of illogical claims can be made when you don’t normalize the numbers to constant dollars. Boo, hiss.

It gets even more ridiculous if you compare all of those dollar costs to some “constant” like a Troy ounce of gold. In 1945, that gold was going for just about $37 US per ounce and today that same little dollop of shiny metal goes for about $1700. The ounce of gold hasn’t changed one iota, but the dollar sure has!

I certain that the relative “costs” and comparisons of the wars are most profound in terms of the casualties, but if the dollars are translated into ounces of gold… the comparison of our current conflict to WWII become far less attractive to even the most adept spin doctors.

Jeff, I strongly suspect that you are under 60 years of age and have only read about Robert McNamara’s “operations analyst” approach and body bag counting mindset.… . .

Just as a note from history (and this is most emphatically not to compare our fighting men and women to the WWII Wehrmacht in any way…but just to address your criteria for victory).…Hitler’s forces inflicted far more casualties than the Wermacht suffered, established at least temporary control over some of the desired regions, and removed the leadership from each of the conquered nations of Europe. He also destroyed large portions of the warmaking capabilities of his European enemies and weakened the knees of many nations that would otherwise have stood against his principles. HE DIED IN THE RUBBLE OF HIS BUNKER IN BERLIN.

I would contend that the only real threshold criteria for victory in warfare is when the enemy concedes defeat (Germany & Japan in WWII) or is completely and utterly destroyed (think of the Mongol sieges in central Asia). Anything short is sadly and very unfortunately just a euphemistic view that we need to justify the end of the fighting.

Winning the war, and winning every battle are very different things, as the NVA general pointed out in Paris.

- Territorial control and influence? They just threw us out of their country, you are aware of that, correct? They told us we could keep 5000 military trainers in their country after this year on condition they had no immunity from Iraqi law. They knew we would not accept that condition.

The government of Iran now has more influence with the Iraqis than we do.

More questions:
– Do we have greater freedom of action in the Middle East since OIF happened, about the same as before, or less?

- Do we have more allies than before?

- How is morale holding up? How do you think people in and out of uniform feel about the war?

Over 50 million or more people lost their life in WWII! There is no way to calculate the cost of that war.
The cost can never be calculated.

I tend to agree with you on one point, we will not “win” in Afghanistan, at least not based on any of the commonly accepted defintions of “wining” a war. As you point out, the Russians, Brits, Moguls, Turks, Arabs,Mongols, Romans, Achmedians, Persians, Macedonians, Assyrians, and certainly a few others that I missed, over history have found it to be a pretty hard nut to crack and achieved only limited military successes.

On the other hand.…We will have punished one of the very few regiemes willing to have aided and abetted Al Qaida in their attacks on the US and at least kept the worst of the fighting OCONUS. Along the way, we also managed to hammer Al Qaida fairly thoroughly for their terrorist attacks. Together, those small successes might at least give pause to some of the other groups who would attack the US. Given the history of the region, those might be the best we can hope for in terms of successes.

Actually you triggered another thought I hadn’t really had on the face of it. There were no metal shortages or rationing of anything that actually impacted felt wealth or lifestyle of general populace in this war. The actual cost can’t be on par with WWII in felt terms for the people of the time compared to now. Numbers could be spun in different ways but a comparison of % of GDP as a measure would probably yield very different results.

Valid assessment on AFG.

Iraq, however, I treat differently. I “win” there seems plausible and mostly coming into being slowly, but it still my turn out to be a major loss. But the value of that win and the effects of its cost are hard to justify.

The parent article promotes a political agenda and errs on the side of sensationalist exaggeration, but still points to some valid conclusions. Iraq, was not worth the cost.

Sadly I don’t think we as a society, particularly one with a rapidly trending leftward leaning, will draw the correct lessons from AFG or Iraq. And articles like the above don’t help point to people to the right lessons.

BTW, good handle, should a been mine ;-)

I would measure victory by whether or not Iraq is a stable functioning democracy able to defend itself and keep others from influencing it more than it wants. Sadly, that won’t be known for several years. It could be a decade before Iraq becomes a reliable economic partner.

“Next time” already happened ie: Libya and Uganda. Good luck getting those blocks checked.

It’s a ridiculous assesment and I take offense to Ewing implying that somehow WE’RE the cause of the greater expense because we’re not living with the same non-existant logistical support our WWII troops did. Guess what Phillip… a SINGLE battle in WWII cost more lives than both wars combined so far. So… what would we rather have? The expense of MRAPs, predators, C-17 medivacs, etc… or piles upon piles of dead US service members like we had in Europe. My point is that comparing different types of wars fought in different centuries as a function of dollar amount is absurd. Oh, and I’m sure the ice cream isn’t really costing the taxpayer all that much.

So if the “stupidest President” suckered you in, what does that say about you? I always love the Bush bashers dichotomy.… he’s an evil mastermind and an infantile moron at the same time. The truth is there is a lot of blame to go around on this one, and that blame knows no party lines and begins with failures prior to the Bush administration. I do agree that Iraq may very well disolve into chaos once we leave, but not necessarily due to religious civil war.

These numbers are astronomical—the costs could stretch out to 2100 and beyond! The last Civil War (1861–65) veteran died in 1956! The costs for WWII vets peaked in the early 1990s as the number declined due to deaths. What a contrast to after WWII when the US had half the world’s wealth–

My numbers came from the above story and the one it cites. The WWII casualty numbers are from the Congressional Research Service report on America’s war casualties. No need to make stuff up or make inaccurate comparisons when the facts are on your side.

Twice the “thinking” ability? Parroting the party line isn’t thinking. Do some reasearch and try some independent thought. It’ll be refreshing.

Not just constant dollars but measuring cost categories the same! The comparison costs vet health care for the last ten years but ignores the health cae costs of wounded WWII vets.

rex — the cost and the economic rough spot comparison has other issues. I could easily make a countercase and cost out Obamacare a decade and compare the numbers along with the debt for the current out of control spending.

Again, my problem is the totally dishonest WWII comparison.

This war has been VERY expensive. We have also have never spent as much money as we have to protect our troops and minimize civilain casualties.

Great points which is why I question the motivation behind the journalists to spin reality so?

Excellent points Jumper

My view is that we invaded Iraq under the banner of WMD’s but we’re really.….….naturally.….….after those luscious Iraki OIL fields !!!! NOW !!!.…..if we bug out.……and do NOT.……control their oil fields.….…..Holy Pipeline.……that will be awful.

I think the Marshall Plan cost something like $45 billion in 1945 dollars. Those figures need to be added in along with whatever was paid by the VA for WWII vet health care. The last sentence in the article is rather loaded too since while the US emerged the biggest manufacturer in the world after WWII, we also ran up a pretty good sized national debt as well. Apples to Apples as many of these comments state.

Iranians, not Iraqis Dale. The Iranians gained enormous political and economic influence with their biggest rival being torn apart.

Ahh, but the Roman notions of war must have had something going for it. Pax Roma lasted about 600 years. Pax Americana is falling apart in less than 70 years. Maybe Roman methods were better.

Rome started falling apart halfway through that 600 year timeframe. They also killed millions to maintain their empire. Are you seriously considering that as an option?

Actually Mike, Der Spiegel is reporting that the Iraqis threw around numbers like less than 400 within three years. Lets get out of there. The Iraqi public’s hatred of the Persians is 100 times more than their dislike of the American government. If the Iranians take Iraq they will be bogged down there for decades, and their ability to cause trouble elsewhere will be crippled.

This is useless to compare the two wars. Almost nothing is the same. Start with how many people died. The length of time. the weapons used. The technology and on and on. Who ever wrote this from where ever they came from is a useless freak.

Mike, we were supposed to leave on New Years in accordance with a treaty we signed 3 years ago. Their offer to let us leave troops longer wasn’t even a valid proposal since their parliament was split on the issue. We’ve been on our way out and Iran is next door — was there ever a question on who gets to play with the Iraqis more?

WW2 overall costs vs the current wars costs, may appear to be greatly unbalanced in favor of the current costs! Although greed prevailed during WW2, it is nothing that is prevelant as it is today! Yes, today’s costs could shadow those of previous wars.…once again, that old saying prevails here too, “follow the money trail”, and you shall find those in the greed category…

Why would the Iranians need to ‘take’ Iraq?

I’m for leaving as well.

Steve, From what I read there was a lot of war time profiteering in WWII, as in all wars. In fact Senator the V,P, Truman chaired a commission on that. Did you read the latest report on waste and fraud in the report chaired by Senator James Webb. they set it at 30 to 60 billion for Astan and Iraq over ten years. I bet it is closer to 80 to 100 Billion.

The point of this was to get a little debate going with people who think we “won.” I’m aware of the SOFA.

re:”…was there ever a question on who gets to play with the Iraqis more?” For the Neocons you bet there was. In reality? No.

No offense intended Mike, but I find myself having to explain the SOFA to everyone I come across the last couple months, usually to the tune of “Obama ended the war” or “Obama’s throwing Iraq away.” We signed a treaty, we’re upholding that treaty, and we’re right on schedule.

That does seem to be about the best we could hope for.

None taken. But just the same, we didn’t *want* to leave yet. That’s the funny part. Conservatives of a certain stripe are trying to lay this on Obama, but it’s the Iraqis who are sticking to the treaty. They really want us out.

I am slowely burning with all of the stupid replys to the facts of the article. Yes this dam war cost more than WWII and Korea combined. How stupid can you be just do simple addition. I served in Vietnam and Desert Storm and my youngest daughter is at this moment heading for Afghanistan. For my family she is the 5th genertation going to war.__The sad fact is Bush knew there were no WMD because I knew. At the end of Desert Storm a massive investigation was conducted to determine why Iraq didn’t use WMD. Remember we captured thousands and thousands of Iraque troops including 4 star Army, AF, and Republican Guard officers high ranking members of the Bath Party along with tons of documents. The answer then and again with the UN inspectors was NO WMD — none get that through your thick heads. Had we not went in to Iraq to steal oil Afghanistan would be over yet it goes on. The US debt, the death of 5 thousand men and women along with almost 50,000 wounded was directly caused by one man who simply left the ANG while I was in Vietnam.

Sorry guys the cost of the WAR which was over May 1, 2003 cost a lot less than they predicted. Nation building or rather policing is what has cost our nation so dearly. Unfortunately when you try to create a peace without the consent of the governed you get what we got. An unruly country with opportunists on both sides. The troops in WWII did everything in theatere and they got paid the equivelent of $600 per month in todays dollars. In IRAQ Contractors were getting paid $150,000 per month to provide trucking services just as an example. You want to know where our money went, it was the bag boys corporations and the organized crime gangs within IRAQ. They stole trillions from the American Taxpayer and we let them. There is no real comparison of WWII and todays wars.

Our Armed forces are organized for the elite troops we say we want but the cost of paying them a comparable wage and sub contracting all non combatant jobs is bakrupting us. Serving your country used to mean just that, taking a low paying job in service to the National Interests of the country. Today service has come to mean a willingness to give your life for no good reason. Bring back the draft and 2 year service contracts for all military related jobs. We will save trillions and allow millions to SERVE their country, instead of parking their asses on wall street complaining about poor me!

It ain’t about what you spent, it is what you git for yer money.
War used to be about kill the other guy and take his stuff.
Not sure where world policeman, nation building fit into that picture.
Muslims is all still Muslim and gas is now $4.00 at the pump.
Global corporations made a good profit and vets are unemployed.

As of the end of 2007, US spent $3–4.5 Trillion dollars on the Iraq war. By 2011, the number is going much higher. Human costs were much higher in WWII, but total financial cost of the US 3 year war effort in WWII is usually given as around $4 Trillion in today’s dollars.
Private contracting is one major problem. Fighting a war over 9 years is another major problem. This article is useful in that it opens peoples eyes to the enormous financial burden this war has been on the American people.
Hopefully we take away lessons learned. If we go to war, go in big, win quickly. Don’t use private contractors. Be more skeptical of what our Presidents tell us.
General Shinseki told the truth, and told President Bush we needed 400,000 soldiers. Rather than buildup the Army we needed for his task, Bush fired Shinseki.
Lawrence Lindsay, economic advisor to Bush, was fired for estimating the cost of the Iraq war would be $200 billion, not the $50 Billion Bush wanted him to say.
Three days after Treasury Secretary Paul O’Neill criticized the Bush Administration’s Iraq policy, the Administration “began an investigation into whether any laws or regulations had been violated by O’Neill.“
Paul Bremer dissolved the Iraqi Army, which turned out to be the biggest American mistake in its conduct of the Iraq war.

The oil will go to China, because only they can afford to pay for it. We shouldn’t send the fleet to face off with China, like Panetta and company are now talking. Just stop shopping at Walmart and truly Buy American, even if it costs more.

What Guest and a few others are saying is that war is a core U.S. industry. It all goes back to the Founding Fathers, and something (I believe) Ben Franklin remarked when asked by a journalist what they had just done when coming out of a Constitutional Convention session in Philadelphia. “…formed a republic, if you can keep it.” The Founding Fathers authorized an army and a navy, but completely distrusted them because “foreign adventures” would cost in “blood and treasure,” eventually bankrupting our new nation. Guess what? That’s exactly what has happened, but, of course, with help from Anmerica’s new aristocracts, Wall Street bankers, and they lawyers and Washington politician friends. (That’s why NONE of them has gone to jail.)

And BTW, those Founding Fathers would be today’s conservative republicans. My, how times have changed!

As opposed to a 700 billion dollar TARP fund, 800 billion dollar stimulus, 450 billion dollar proposed stimulus, and a complete inability to provide the most basic function of government like pass a fiscal year budget before the fiscal year. None of that will be linked will it?

Okay. It is true that fighting a foreign war is more expensive than staying home or in base camp training for the next war; but really — I never see the media admit that the true price is the cost of everything that went over standard daily costs. Like casualties, extra fuel, and spent munitions and vehicles. I agree with the posters who say the human cost is all that matters, and that was greatly less than WWII, but the build up to full strength in that war was tremendous, and without precedence in history. Almost every weapon was replaced and newly designed during the war, and the great numbers of combat vehicles, and many of the ships didn’t even exist before that war. Plus the atomic bomb was two thirds the cost of the entire war (if I have my history right).

In this war, most of the infrastructure already existed, there was only a modest troop build up, and I suspect most of the cost went into new armored wheeled vehicles, the fuel to fly all this around, the typical supply increase(beans,bullets, bandages), combat wear and tear, and not least the cost of casualties, and the long term care of our wounded warriors.

What I’d like to see just once, if they are going to make these claims, is an admission that normal costs for everyday military preparedness should be subtracted from the cost of the war. The resultant figure would be the only true part of the complaint, and would be significantly less than the typical sensationalist media hype. If someone already posted the same argument — I apologize!

Think about it — it is like complaining that the cost of maintaining a police force in a city was too high just because a crime wave, and a riot happened! Sheeze! We had to shoot some rubber bullets, tear gas, fuel up the patrol cars, and pay overtime to the police force! DOH! It all just seems stupid to me!

You are factually wrong. The $4tril number you claim for GWOT includes costs not included in the WWII number (e.g. health care, interest on debt). Do it the same then come back and try and make your points.

You are also factually wrong about Shinseki. He was never fired. Rumsfeld (not a fan) named his successor early hoping that he would resign. He did not.

The number in the book I referenced, does not include the cost of Afghanistan or the cost of the Dept of Homeland Security. So the GWOT is probably double the cost of the war in Iraq. The $3 Trillion does not include interest, the $4.5 Trillion does. So I gave you both numbers. If you scan the book review at Amazon, you will see that. As the war was financed by borrowing, due to the Bush tax cuts, it can be argued we should count at least some of the interest as a cost of the war. No one has said we can have an exact comparison of costs between different wars, but what is seen by making a comparison, is the extreme financial cost of this war of choice. http://​www​.nytimes​.com/​2​0​0​7​/​0​1​/​1​2​/​w​a​s​h​i​n​g​t​o​n​/​1​2sh
If you prefer “vilified and marginalized” to fired, that is ok by me.

The financial cost of the Iraq war goes far beyond the supplemental appropriations. The authors in the link I gave, go through the budget in detail, and give the DIRECT costs of the Iraq war. Indirect costs being much higher.

Go read the book, or at least scan the review at Amazon. To maintain support for the war, financial costs have always been understated.
So have the human costs.

Lets pray for both Iran and Israel not to be next on the line.

According to estimates Saddam killed 300,000 Iraqis during his rule of the country. Conservative estimates indicate at least that many were killed after we went in (most Iraqi to Iraqi). The difference is Shites were killed by Saddam. Sunnis were killed when we went in as retribution.

LOL! VERY true about the “impact” on the populace! All of those “adjusted and normalized” numbers just dont come close to presenting the truth, they are manufactured just to support some particular political agenda. Its sad.

As a matter of fact, some claim that many of the “rationing” efforts in WWII were, at least after the initial “surge”, continued solely to put the US citizenry “in the fight” rather than just sitting on the sideline as observers. If so, I would have to applaud what was a Democratic administration at that time for their insight and wisdom.

If Hitler and Tojo could be blamed for that dull razor blade each morning and the fact that the coffee had a bit more chichory than you preferred; Hitler and Tojo had to go! Today’s politicians forget that the US citizen will either be “in the fight”, or rightfully disgusted by the carnage of war as seen through the 6 o’clock news.

Your verifiable facts confuse his unsupportable opinions, so… what else can he do?

“Iraq War could end up costing more than WWII”

Well if it do thats only because everything have more than quadruple in price sense WWII, I mean the price of gas was probably a whopping 35 cents mabe less, look at the price of gas now. A loaf of bread was mabe a dime, a pound of beef was mabe 25 cents, so I would say yes, this “war” could end up costing more than WWII. Pay, clothing, housing Vehicles, ammo, training, all that was cheeper for the Military, h-ll it was cheaper for every body. But this is common knowledge, why are they asking this question? My question would be, was this Iraq “war” necessary?, we know WWII was.

Ah… so YOU’RE the one who had all the intel… So where were you buddy? Maybe you should have jumped up in front of the General Assembly at the UN and told THEM what only YOU knew. Give me a break… for someone who can’t spell Iraqi you sure have a lot of intel that wasn’t available to anyone else at the time. The UN never issued a definitive report regarding Iraq’s WMD program because it was a careful ruse by the regime there to give the impression the did, in fact, have them. So we went to steal Iraqi oil, huh? So where is it? We haven’t even signed a tentative agreement for field rights. It’s the same old tired arguement by the same old tired people. But hey… don’t let the facts hurt you, go have another beer and bask in the glory of how smart you think you are.

My son just got back from his second stretch in that forsaken part of the world, so I know as well as you the cost of the war in that very personal way that goes beyond the dollars spent. God grant that your daughter also return safe.

I even feel the same frustration that you do over the fact that we, our generation at least, have passed on this war to our sons and daughters, but.… When a vicious, unprincipled despot with proven WMD capability (remember the gassed Kurds, the Iran-Iraq War, etc) puffs his chest and brags to the world of his continued capabilty to build and use WMD, does anyone have a choice but to believe him? Could it be that none of those ranking Iraqi officers wanted to end up in the docket of a modern day Nuremburg charged with gassing thousands of Iranians and Iraqi civilians? Could things have been done better in the light of history’s 20/20 vision? Perhaps, but you certainly know from your time in combat in Vietnam, one never has that opportunity in real time.

And I would suggest a bit of research into the US public opinion, and political rhetoric, just prior to the attack on Pearl Harbor. Roosevelt wisely resorted to a bunch of political scams and plenty of “smoke and mirrors” to get the US ready for WWII (and even to aid what would eventually be the Allies) in spite of a groundswell of isolationism and pacifism. Today we fairly clearly and universally see that WWII was “necessary”, in 1940, that vision was a lot less clear. Even in the months and years after Pearl Harbor, there were a lot of folk that did not see the necessity, but…… hindsight, particularly hindsight from the perspective of 50 years, is a bit easier.

I read this article to my dad who is a WWII survivor (Pilot in the South Pacific). He just grunted and said the whole thing is stupid, you just can’t pay for a war with a credit card, we knew that then why can’t they figure that out today.

Because then was to save someone or for liberty … today is for Halliburton and Ratheon and LM.
get real

The whole article is so much BS. War equipment was dirt cheap in WW2 even adjusted to inflation. We dropped lots of very cheap dumb bombs and just blew everything up. Now we use a $75,000 Hellfire missile to take out a single enemy fighter. Instead of bombarding a target with artillery we call in a B-2 to drop a high tech guided munition that costs a few hundred grand. WW2 soldiers basic combat load of ammo was 50 rounds and now its 210 and soldier just mostly point and shoot! So much so we are still going through about 3,000,000,000 rounds of small arms ammo a year. Now we are starting to field “green” ammo that costs 2–3 times as much as standard 5.56. Soldiers used to walk and now they drive everywhere.

The funny thing is that the people are focused on the costs, yes it is important however the technologies that cost so much saved lives, the high priced contractors, they were filling roles so the military could fight, we were and still are a volunteer military, WWII was a draftee army. Freedom is not free folks, we are the world police, going where we do not belong, and until we are knocked out by China, or Russia, we will keep on fighting for others. Look at Libya, our current president took us out of Iraq & Afghanistan, but spent money on Libya!
In WWII there was a total # of deaths at:291,557, Gulf War 1: 147, GWOT: (Afghanistan & Iraq) 4,724, can you really put a price on human life?

I brought this up a few weeks ago; but the AHMF majrod says it’s not true. The windbag claims to know it all. But
knows nothing. I’ll say it again: Post 9/11 spending on iraq, astan, pstan, and “domestic national security” is more than was spent by the US on WWII.

Are you trying to say that OIF caused the mortgage crisis?

And the “our government sucks” thing has completely worn out for me. WE THE PEOPLE are the sovereign in this country. Quit f-in crying about it on a website, go find a better candidate for office, and get them elected. You seem to have time on your hands.

“No one has said we can have an exact comparison of costs between different wars”

Don’t you think we should at least try before writing a big bold headline on the subject? It’s pretty disingenuous of a journalist to say the words “cost more than WWII” if he can’t say how much WWII actually costs or proclaim that WWII costs A+B but Iraq costs A+B+C+D when those figures apply to both.

No. I’m not saying that. I’m saying that OIF was a MAJOR factor in the meltdown, coupled with the mortage crisis and simultaneous tax cuts. We have the greatest country and the greatest government in the world. But authorizing OIF was a horrendous mistake that we’ll be paying for for many years in countless ways. And if we refuse to learn from that mistake, the price will be even larger. If that proposition constitutes “crying” to you, then IMHO, you’re part of the problem not the solution. Time for you to act on the responsiblity inherent in the phrase “We the People…”

1. WMD’s that were found in Iraq were pre-1991 so they would not be proof of an ongoing WMD program in the 1990s.

2. During the lead-up to war in March 2003, Hans Blix had found no stockpiles of WMD and had made significant progress toward resolving open issues of disarmament noting “proactive” but not always the “immediate” Iraqi cooperation as called for by UN Security Council Resolution 1441.

3. The Bush Admin took the word of Ahmad Chalabi. who was a known fraud, as basis for the invasion.

“””“In IRAQ Contractors were getting paid $150,000 per month to provide trucking services just as an example.”””

BS is a poor example. Truck drivers were paid $60,000– $70,000 per year.

Don’t be so quick to declare that the war was “Financed by borrowing” as there is no listing in the federal budget that says what is paid for by taxes and what is paid for by borrowing. I can just as easily claim that the EPA, Dept of Eduation, etc are all paid for from borrowing just as easily as you claim that for the war.
Actually, one way that you COULD cateforize the spending is to start with all constitutionally authorized spending like Defense, Post Office, Post Roads, etc as being “paid for” by taxes. Those budget items that are not specifically mentioned like Medicaid then divide up the remainder of the tax levy and whatever is not covered is then considered to be paid from borrowing.

Ok… OIF factors into the debt because it was yet one more thing we stuck on the credit card. The crisis would still have happened with no Iraq War. Do we agree about that?

It’s good that you’re mad, but you need to get a handle on what the driving factors are behind the problems we face. Otherwise you’re sidetracked.

Honestly, I think that the perceptions of many as to the “larger truth” will change greatly as time goes on. There are many historical questions left unanswered as to why we went into Iraq and how and why we did what we did after Saddam Hussein’s government underwent “regime change”. That argument will continue — and it should continue. People who try to claim victory for their opinions really have a responsibility to make a convincing case. And the double standard that exists between what the US did in the Balkans and Libya compared to what it has been doing in Iraq and Afghanistan is embarrassingly self-evident. Those who advocate America hiding behind its borders need to learn how to eat their own dogfood.

Absolutely no. Certainly these things are not simple. And it is a matter of degree. But the cost of the Iraq war may certainly have been the difference between a cyclic economic downturn and the edge of the Depression we found ourselves on as BHO took office. One more point. This wasn’t a matter of merely putting a multi-trillion dollar war “on the credit card.” The Bush Administration (in collusion with Congress) simultaneously committed us to the cost of an unpredictable and utterly unneccessary war while at the same time CUTTING TAXES. Stupidity literally beyond belief…

Your view is not supported by the facts. We didn’t use our massive military power to grab any oil and in fact all the major oil related contracts have gone to the Chinese and others.

Easily documented facts don’t support your proposition. MANY other industries dwarf the defense industry both in terms dollars and influence.

I get your point but think you miss mine. The “Larger Truth” in this case is that the Iraq war was and will be catastrophically expensive over multiple generations and was a major factor in the economic downturn. Not much to argue about there now or in the future. Despite the failure and disasterous consequences of the Iraq war, it does not justify isolationism.

It (OIF) is a symptom of the greater problem. The People are not doing our job of keeping our government honest and accountable. Corporate greed dominates both political parties now because we do not our job checking and balancing their depredations. That’s the root of it all.

The Neocons are a bunch of utopian fools. They’d been breathing their own fumes ever since Desert Storm as to the capability of our armed forces. They also absolutely believe that everyone everywhere pretty much wants the same thing out of life, which dovetails with their own desires. They had no conception that their war in Iraq would go like it did. They expected it all to be over in months and pay for itself, and so a tax cut was of no concern. They still can’t believe the Iraqis aren’t grateful for what we did to their country. We will now pay dearly for their lack of vision.

But my point is, that is now in the past. OIF happened because of our collective tacit consent and approval, just like the mortgage crisis, just like the dot com bubble. Preventing a recurrence of all of these problems starts with We The People taking responsibility for what happens in our country. Preventing a recurrence and getting this country on track is the goal. Do we agree on that?

No because I don’t look to tie unrelated facts together in order to support my political views. We are $15 trillion in debt and we didn’t get there because of the Iraq War, it doesn’t help the bottom line but it in no demonstrable way what so ever caused our economic situation. Over speculation in housing compounded by fraudulent bond ratings of mortgage backed securities fanned by panic and counter productive accounting requirements are what caused the economic collapse. Not the war.

Well said, and we sure do! And you’re correct; OIF was the tragic result of a Presidency hijacked by the infamous PNAC Doctrine. And that’s why the answers seem so elusive. That is, there was no singular motivation behind OIF. It was sold that way, via the fear mongering, but in reality was the nightmare expression of a whacko foreign policy philosophy (for lack of a better word).

Well we’ll just have to agree to disagree about what’s related and what’s not. To my (however flawed) way of thinking, your explanation is way over simplified. Multiple factors, including those you cite, contributed. But it is preposterous on its face to suggest that the trillion dollar spending spree on an utterly unnecessary war, commensurate with the collapse in revenue from a simultaneous tax cut, was not a factor

Yeah it was “dirt cheap” compared to today, but you needed much more of it to do anything. You’d send a squadron of B-17s to do what two F-15Es carrying JDAMs or Paveway LGBs can do today. The cost in human lives was also much, much higher.

That’s a good point. What has it cost us to care for various needs of some 10 million WWII-era service personnel, vs. the anticipated cost of meeting the lifetime needs of some one million personnel who will have served in Iraq and Afghanistan by the time America quits both wars. This calcualtion must include the fact that America lost well over one milion dead and wounded (combat and non-combat) during WWII.…


No. Templar said it best, “We are $15 trillion in debt and we didn’t get there because of the Iraq War, it doesn’t help the bottom line but it in no demonstrable way what so ever caused our economic situation. Over speculation in housing compounded by fraudulent bond ratings of mortgage backed securities fanned by panic and counter productive accounting requirements are what caused the economic collapse. Not the war.”

You can keep repeating the lib talking point that the war caused the economic situation but it doesn’t make it any more true. The reasons are above not just the war.

WWII was also financed but we are not counting the interest. We paid for the medical care of over half a million wounded vets for DECADES after WWII. Those are not included in the cost cited for WWII. I could go on.

Considering your loose and fast treatment of facts, I’m not accepting Afghanistan and DHS as doubling the cost (or buying the logic that DHS is part of the cost of the war). Again, count it the SAME way and get back to me otherwise you’re making up facts to justify a weak position.

“multiple generations”? You’re joking I hope. 1 trillion $ represents 1/15th of our national economic output. Given that in multiple generations and even very modest growth our nation will generate hundreds of trillions of $ your statement is either a joke or patently absurd.

Let’s make this easy. If it cost you $5 in gas to go get your medication for stupidity and someone else goes to the pharmacy and you want to add up the gas, insurance, car wear and tear its not the same. Did you get that? If not you need to jump in your car and get over to the pharmacy QUICK!

No, the issue isn’t that war is more expensive (no kidding!) its tghe lie that we spent more on GWOT Than we did in WWII yet measuring it two different ways.

You can’t say it was more expensive now to go to the grocery store when you include gas, maintenance, insurance etc. and then only compare it to a past cost that only included gas. Count it the same.

Start with health care costs of 15 million vets that served in WWII and the interest on 60 years of WWII debt (WWII was fought on credit also). Look forward to you running the numbers and proving we spent more on GWOT. What need a BOOK to help you make sense of a lie?

Taxpayer, October 25th, 10;52 pm…

The Brits never actually TRIED to conquer Afghanistan back in the days of the empire and Queen Vic, they just occupied the place and counted the cost cheap compared to having the Russian Tsars sitting there looking at India, Britains crown jewel of the Empire.

That was back in the days when the military high command could figure on “Acceptable Casualties” of X number of soldiers a year as a favourable trade against national policy.

Try that today and the media would have a field day!

The press had a bit of a fit then too!

Check out http://​history1800s​.about​.com/​b​/​2​0​1​0​/​0​1​/​1​1​/​t​h​e​-18… for a run down on ONE of the British “incursions”.

My friend, you ought to know by now that you cant fight politically motivated rhetoric and “dinner party” opinions with simple facts. If some author pointed out that there were 100 US soldiers killed in the four years of WWII for every KIA in the last 10 years in SWA, how would he ever get on the “A list” for the party circuit? People dont care what sacrifices their fathers’ generation made, just how horrible and unjustifiable the sacrifice of those who went to war today (although I must note that precious few of those who actually went to war seem to be allowed on that A-list)!

Often thinking and political correctness are mutually incompatible, and.… Im fine with that! LOL!

As for a “win” in Iraq, Im all for it, but… by what standard? Will there be an open “democracy” in place when we leave? Considering the lack of a democratic tradition and all of the fractionalization of the society.… :-( There might even be a question as to the results of a free and open democratic referendum, since the Iraqi voting population is hardly the US voting population.…

Will there be a regeime in place that is an ally of the US? (who are we kidding!)

Will there even be a better humanitarian situation than when Saddam was in place? (perhaps, but only until the new regeime decides that they need to gas their own citizens to get “peace” and avoid the need for re-election!)

I think that I must just be old and cynical, but I have disturbing pictures in my mind of the Hueys hovering along side the roof of the Embassy in Saigon.…

In 50 years, the 20/20 hindsight might be clear enough to tell if there was a victory to be had…and who managed to sieze it.

Horsepucky. Your’s and Majorod’s prediliction for giving the Bush administration a free pass on the greatest and costliest single political mistake since Vietnam notwithstanding, I stand by my assertion that OIF did indeed materially and significantly contribute to our debt crisis and economic meltdown.

Here’s a clue: You cannot simultaneously increase spending and decrease revenue. Bush did it and we’re paying for it in many more ways than one…

No joke unfortunately. The cost of OIF will exceed 1T by multiples. Just the medical costs alone for years to come will be astronomical. The boneheads who got us into that mess didn’t even conceive of the harsh realities down the road.

I don’t live in a world neatly divided into “libs” and “right thinkers.” I have no axe to grind other than what is best for the country. You have chosen to edit my comments because you are in fact driven by a narrow and simplistic idealogy. I REPEATEDLY said there is no single root cause for the economic meltdown. However the wholly irresponsible and indeed tragic decision to wage an uncessary war at the cost of thousands of precious American lives coupled with a simultaneous tax reduction is a MAJOR causal factor. I stand by that.

Please, multiple generations? That assertion is absurd. Not to mention were the costs to be 10 or 20 trillion, that is still nothing compared to the amount of wealth the US economy will generate over multiple generations.

You haven’t bothered to respond to how I pointed out your attempt to link war spending to the economic collapse is nothing but pure fairy tale. Now you try to assert that somehow the costs associated with care for veterans is going to be some crippling financial issue which is also absurd. You’re engaging in pure politics making assertions that are either straight falsehoods or overblown melodrama.

Allow me to point out your multiple generations theatrics.

The US GDP stands at roughly $15 trillion annually current #s. Growth for this year is forecast at 2.5%, and that is in pretty rough times. Scale that back to say 1.5% for the sake of argument. Multiple generations implies a time frame of at least 30 years in my opinion.

$15 trillion, growing at 1.5%, over 30 years means that in 30 years time the US economy will have generated nearly $600 trillion of the time frame. Your assertion about this massive cost to multiple generations is again nothing more than some melodramatic attempt to inflate your political perception and it isn’t backed by fact one.

Ha! Finally the partisan hack revealed! I never at any point said I agree with the Iraq war. I never at any point said I was giving a pass to the Bush administration. I never said I thought things went well in Iraq. i never said we couldn’t have done things differently or better in the context we were involved. You can assert all you like that the Iraq War contributed to the economic collapse but that in no way represents facts, that is simply your emotional shrill pronouncements. I would rather stand on fact and truth than emotional fairy tales.

Here’s another clue, Obama has increased spending and decreased revenue more than Bush did. Don’t bother responding because I can do it for you, you’ll fall back on the typical liberal excuse of Obama got handed the mess by Bush.

Okay. You’re right. The thousands of casualties who will be treated at enormous expense for multiple generations are a figment of my imagination. The damage to our economy will evaporate instantaneously. Those costs will simply disappear. Your logic is unassailable.

Your calculations also give me comfort that our current economic situation is merely a blip on the radar; nothing to really worry about.

Try this “Fact One:” We spent trillions invading a country and causing the deaths of hundreds of thousands, including our own–AND seriously mitigating the real war on terror–FOR NO REASON. No melodrama there at al!

Fine. We’ll agree to disagree. There is no question the Iraq War was a significant contributor to the economic meltdown. The only one? Certainly not.

You also have to contend with the multitudes of major economists who happen to be possessed of the same “shrill pronouncements” and “emotional fairytales.”

But that shouldn’t be a problem for you because after all, they’re just “libs.”

The only difference between Bush and Obama is the circumstances. Bush proceeded at his option. Obama, on the precipice of depression, had no choice… Bush was starting the same thing prior to his belated departure.

I never said the casualties are a figment of your imagination so don’t put words in my mouth. I pointed out your judgement as to the cost and effect is overblown and not based on real numbers. I never said the costs will disappear. I showed you exactly how much financial firepower the US will bring to bear in a 30 year time frame.

I never said our current economic situation is a blip on the radar, again you’re putting words in my mouth not to mention engaging in a pure red herring style of debating and Ad hominem attacks which only highlights your lack of a defense for your opinions.

Please consider this question, and please don’t respond until you do:

If you’re right, what difference does it make?

I don’t agree it contributed to the economic meltdown though, much of the money spent in Iraq was spent well before the collapse happened. Over half the time in Iraq the US economy was on fire, it was a fool’s paradise based on the over valued housing market but none the less the growth was undeniable. That’s my point, the spending on Iraq certainly didn’t add to the good numbers and when the economy soured the opposite is equally true.

I also place no credence in Obama supported when they engage in blind defense of his administration. When someone becomes President you accept the good and bad of the previous admin and own it, it becomes yours, period. That’s the job description.

You have succeeded in distilling our conflict to its essence: You believe the cost and effect of the war the US waged in Iraq is “overblown.” I do not. I believe it is a horrific, tragic, stupefying blunder that we will be paying for dearly in multiple ways for many years.

I think it’s self-evident…

I’m not getting the feeling that you considered the question, but whatever. Treat me like I’m dumb. Sometimes stuff doesn’t sink in the first time. Explain it again, please.

If OIF was a major contributor to the current situation, what difference does it make?

Mike there have been thousands of Iraqi deaths contribuited from this disaster that Bush/Cheney caused for no reason. You only want to hear the polished view from the far right winggers tell you.
Our troops might not have killed that many but our actions of being there sure did.

You are missing other factors in your attempt to put this all on the Bush Presidency. The Congressional resolution had bipartisan support. A majority of Americans honestly thought Hussein had WMD’s, and post 9–11 there is a case to be made that we may need to take pro-active action to prevent terrorist attacks on American soil. Plus we had been at a de facto state of war with Iraq since Desert Storm, enforcing UN resolutions for which we had been blamed for a million Iraqi civilian deaths. Clinton repeatedly attacked Iraq in his Presidency on the WMD basis as well. This is all evaluated in hindsight. Suppose Libay spun out of control (and who says it won’t) into a greater more costlier war? Would you make the connection to how horrible Obama is, plus since he didn’t even care to get a Congressional resolution??

You’re thinking is too simplistic and politically biased. Would you consider that in fact it was CLINTON who made the greatest foreign policy mistake by wagging the dog post-Lewinsky affair by attacking Iraq, resulting in a lack of focus on and failure to get Bin Laden? Then if we did get Bin Laden, there would have been no 9/11, and then, no Iraq War. Trillions of $‘s and thousands of lives saved, except for Iraqis that would have been killed under Saddam, Uday, and Qusay.

Possibly help Obama win re-election by bringing up the dirty past and creating the fear that another Republican President will lead us into another costly war.

One of the most amazing things is how often political rhetoric, particularly when demonizing the “enemy”, comes back to haunt the perpetrators! LOL!

I would include not just the Libyan adventures of this administration but also the Central African “deployment”. While small and, prima facie, more than justifiable given the actions of the terrorists targeted, it could easily end up very nasty as well. I seem to remember that the whole SE Asian fiasco started as a handfull of “trainers and advisors” and we know where that ended.

Right on!


Uh, I think you have your attacks and your countries mixed up… and you have not a clue what my politics are…

There is no question that Congress caved and is complicit. There is also no question it was the behest of the President. If we truly believed we had enough actionable evidence of Iraq WMDs, we had many military alternatives short of a land invasion. The idea that we had to take “proactive” action post 9–11 against Iraq while we let the war against Al Qaeda go to hell in a handbasket is absurd on its face and always was. Iraq had NOTHING to do with 9/11.

What is this weird stuff about Clinton attacking Iraq? You mean taking out air defense radars to enforce the no-fly zone?

And yes I would and do hold Obama to the same standard I judged the disasterous Bush administration. We’ll see how he fares…

as far as other military options goes, we are again evaluating in 20/20 hindsight, and there are others who can articulate this better than I, but as I recall.. the Iraq Liberation Act (passed unanimously thru Congress) was public policy prior to 9/11 that made regime change to legal policy of the US. CIA ground personnel knew that the only way to get Saddam out was a land invasion. And we had a serious reputation issue since Clinton p*ssed out and didn’t help the Kurds who we promised we would help.

The Clinton policy was much more than just no fly zone enforcement. There was Desert Fox & Desert Strike. Through the 90s Iraq’s infrastructure was trashed, and we were blamed for the death of a million Iraqi civilians. Ah yes, the international UN Sanctions contributed to this too. The whole point is that it is unfair to characterize Bush as a reckless war monger. There was considerable precedent to OIF. So say OIF never took place. It is possible that the world and the US would be in an even worse state than it is now.

you hate Bush right?

Voted for him twice. But alas his administration was the most incompetent in modern times. He was co-opted by the PENACers, with Cheney and that flaming idiot Rumsfeld in the lead. A disaster truly, across the board.

USAF, Citizen — I have no illusions that I’m going to change the mind of a political hack. My comments serve to educate those that don’t take the time to educate themselves or think about what they just read (the article). As a personal bonus I entertain myself with the mental gymnastics and frenetic mental activity libs throw themselves into when challenged with some pretty basic and annoying common sense and facts. I always walk away with a great degree of satisfaction when the liberal inteligentsia elites demonstrate they really aren’t.

It’s like daisy chaining claymores and opening up with a machinegun on a commie column! PRICELESS!!! When the smoke clears its really an inspirational sight!

Hmmm. hadn’t considered that. Just thought it was an attempt to rewrite history.

Iron — Your words…
“There is no question it (the war) is a major contributor to our current economic peril.“
“The “Larger Truth” in this case is that the Iraq war was and will be catastrophically expensive over multiple generations and was a major factor in the economic downturn“
“Is there no question of the direct link between this black hole for our nation’s wealth and our economic state? ”

Only AFTER you were PUMMELLED by various posters did you start to acknowledge other sources to the downturn and admit the war wasn’t THE factor. Don’t get upset when I use your words against you. Don’t say them in the first place and you’ll be much better off.

1 trillion over eight+ years just pales against the TARP, Spendilicious Stimulus, Obamacare etc. that were done in one fell swoop. You might not see the world like I do. That’s what rose colored sunglasses will do for you!

Templar — “You’re engaging in pure politics making assertions that are either straight falsehoods or overblown melodrama. ”

Eloquent and accurate description of the frenetic attempts to defend a losing position. Bravo! Thanks for the lesson.

Media bias is subtle and not so subtle. Have you noticed that when Bush is President the media reported “US Soldiers” dying daily — and when Obama is President, the headlines is “NATO Soldiers killed”?

Gents: to ignore the financial costs(irrespective of the comparison to WWII) would appear to be using a big white wash brush to cover the biggest mistake we’ve made in the last 60 yrs of projecting policy with military action. We started the thing on a false premise. We perpetuated it for reasons only those with some sick cowboy bravado could appreciate. This nation of ours can no longer be the global bully. WE CAN’T AFFORD IT! Of all the aspects of humanity to develop and nurture, why have we chosen to be the mentors of military might and forcing ourselves and our policies on nations that don’t want us involved. Nothing and no nation lasts for ever, we’re hastening our own demise with this mindless spending.

I agree with you on the “mindless spending” part. As we proved with the Soviet Union, a military adversary can be destroyed by a deluge of dollars. Now we are “doing it” to ourselves, but its most assuredly NOT the military budget that is “doing it”. For every volley of defense dollars there are two or three volleys fired by the so called “entitlement programs’. Dont believe me, just check the budget reports.

As for the “last for ever” part, you may well be right, I will just foolishly choose to disagree until the bridge burns! Of course, that is why I chose the picture/atavar for this discussion group. :-)

I might even reference the editorial (legimate location for opinions) and news articles (hmmm…. what did they call that in Journalism class.…) that describe GWOT as “Bush’s War”, ignoring the waves of Tomahawks that Clinton loosed into Afghanistan and Somalia or Obama’s ramp up in Afghanistan or deployment to central Africa or.… .… . .

Roger that. The whole “US vs NATO soldiers dying” as reported in the media really p*sses me off. Then again, I guess you could make the argument that Bush is to blame for screwing up Afghanistan, too, and that Obama deserves credit for some meaningful foreign policy accomplishments.

Japan signed a treaty too, I guess they won too LOL

Problem is that we have a miltray that hasnt won a war in three generations. They dont even know what winning is anymore — they lose and make excuses and call that “winning ”

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