View Full Version : Running cost of the Iraq war
Jake the Plumber
01-06-2005, 09:32 PM
As you may notice, my mind is on Iraq a lot today.
I was going to post this in GQ, but I figure this would be a better place for it, given what technicalities can arise.
So, what is the running cost of the Iraq war? I recall $200 billion as a price tag, but that was last year. I'm sure the extended deployment is running up the bills, even without the infrastructure rebuilding programs fully functional.
One related question I'll tack onto the end: Suppose the elections go smoothly and Iraq has an elected sovereign government, which rejects the US. How economically stable would it be? Would it nationalize its oil industry to pay its startup fees? Would it borrow heavily from other countries (France? Russia (in services and contracts)?)
01-06-2005, 09:38 PM
There was an editorial cartoon comparing the US Tsunami donation of US$ 350 million to 3 days cost of running the occupation/war in Iraq.
Horsey Cartoon (http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/horsey/viewbydate.asp?id=1138)
01-06-2005, 09:52 PM
i don't have any cites handy, but i believe that the current total for the Iraq war is about $170 billion and the $200 billion figure is through fiscal year 2005, which ends Sep 30, 2005.
01-06-2005, 10:14 PM
01-07-2005, 08:04 AM
Drat. I had a really good response written up, but then I opened a PDF which came up in this very window and I lost everything.
Bottom line: There's a lot of mistakes being made about counting funds spent in Afghanistan as funds spent in Iraq. For example, lots of people believe that the $87 billion bill passed by Congress in 2003 was entirely for Iraq. Wrong. Only if you count all of that money for Iraq can one come up with figures closer to $200 billion.
So far, the actual amount of funds for military operations in Iraq that has been spent is somewhere between $100 billion and $120 billion. There is also $18 billion in reconstruction assistance that has been pledged and appropriated, but only about $2.5 billion of that has been spent. The monthly spend rate for military operations in Iraq is in the neighborhood of $4.5 billion.
In comparison, we have spent something between $35 billion to $50 billion for Afghanistan. The monthly spend rate there is somewhere around $800 million.
01-07-2005, 08:47 AM
How economically stable would it be? Would it nationalize its oil industry to pay its startup fees? Would it borrow heavily from other countries (France? Russia (in services and contracts)?)
Interesting question. My thoughts are Very stable (thanks to oil revenue) - Yes (because they're already nationalized) - Yes (because they need a huge investment in their infrastructure). But what's the evidence?
The full platform of the United Iraqi Alliance (front runners to win the elections) has not been published in any source that I can find with Google. Except for Juan Cole's (http://www.juancole.com/2004/12/platform-of-united-iraqi-alliance.html) comment. And except for one certain point that has been widely highlighted.
I found the Highlights Of Election Program of Kurdistani Alliance List (http://home.cogeco.ca/~kurdistan5/5-1-05-op-ed-hawramany-highlights-election-program.htm). It says "14.To work towards adoption of free market economy and support investments and provide support to achieve progress in agricultural, industrial and trade sectors." (Incidentally, it also again stresses the fact that the Kurds want to participate in the elections and want federalism, not secession, but that was another discussion.)
vBulletin® v3.7.3, Copyright ©2000-2013, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.