A study conducted by Brown University’s Watson Institute for International Studies found that over the past 10 years the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have cost United States taxpayers a total $2.3 to 2.7 trillion, with a final tally being at least $3.7 trillion, an average of $12,000 per American citizen. According to the study, titled, “Costs of War” (www.costsofwar.org) in 2011 the United States Congress has given $1.3 trillion to the Department of Defense for war spending. Projected costs do not include care for wounded US veterans and interest on the war debt. At the end of April 2011 average costs of the combined military occupations of Iraq and the Afghanistan amounted to $9.7 billion per month, a figure equivalent to the annual budget for the Environmental Protection Agency. Republican and Democratic lawmakers remain divided about cutting the military budget even as federal spending in almost every area far exceeds funds taken in by the government. Part of the confusion concerning military costs is related to the Pentagon’s inability to pinpoint specific war costs. Further, despite excessive military spending, the US how has a smaller set of armed forces that are inefficiently trained and poorly equipped.
“Report: $3.7 Trillion for U.S. Wars, $12,000 Per Person,” Global Research, August 16, 2011
Author: Nancy A. Youssef
“U.S. War Costs Reach At Least $3.7 Trillion and Counting”
Author: Reuters via Huffington Post
Student Researcher: Joanne Marszal, Florida Atlantic University
Faculty Advisor: James F. Tracy, Florida Atlantic University