Tuesday :: Dec 4, 2007

"Priorities don’t get much more twisted."


by Turkana

Between some 80,000 and 2,000,000 civilians killed.

Some 4,400,000 Iraqi refugees.

Some 3882 American and 306 coalition troops killed.

Over 28,000 American troops wounded.

Skyrocketing rates of troop suicides and mental health problems.

A Congressional Budget Office estimate of a total financial cost for the two wars of over $2,400,000,000,000, with Iraq comprising 80% of the total, which is a 50% increase in the cost estimate since the previous CBO estimate, which was already up just a tad from Bush's 2003 claim that Iraq would cost "only" $50,000,000,000. Yes, that makes for an underestimate in the total cost by a factor of nearly forty. Or I should say made. You can now nearly double it.

As Bob Herbert explains, in the New York Times:

A report prepared for the Democratic majority on the Joint Economic Committee of the House and Senate warns that without a significant change of course in Iraq, the long-term cost of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan could head into the vicinity of $3.5 trillion. The vast majority of those expenses would be for Iraq.

I like to write these numbers out: that would be $3,500,000,000,000. Mostly for an immoral, illegal, unjustified war of aggression that has wrought hell on an innocent people, and is now expected to accomplish nothing. Depending, of course, on your priorities. Depending, of course, on your loyalties.

As Herbert continues:

Priorities don’t get much more twisted. A country that can’t find the money to provide health coverage for its children, or to rebuild the city of New Orleans, or to create a first-class public school system, is flushing whole generations worth of cash into the bottomless pit of a failed and endless war.

We don't own this war, it owns us.

President Bush’s formal funding requests for Iraq have already exceeded $600 billion. In addition to that, the report offers estimates of the war’s “hidden costs” from its beginning to 2017: the long-term costs of treating the wounded and disabled; interest and other costs associated with borrowing to finance the war; the money needed to repair or replace military equipment; the increased costs of military recruitment and retention; and such difficult to gauge but very real costs as the loss of productivity from those who have been killed or wounded.

And I can't add anything better than what Herbert does, to close:

Seriously. How long do we want this madness to last?
Turkana :: 5:03 PM :: Comments (33) :: Digg It!