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Iraq: The War That Broke Us — Not

The Iraq War ends this month. The last combat brigade left August 19. Operation Iraqi Freedom, which began in 2003, will end August 31. September 1 marks the beginning of Operation New Dawn. Now that it’s over, what did the Iraq War cost?  

Here are examples of what some people had been saying about Iraq War costs.
“It was under Mr Bush that the deficit spiralled out of control as we fought an unnecessary and endless $3,000bn war in Iraq…”
 – James Carville, the Financial Times.
“The Iraq adventure has seriously weakened the U.S. economy, whose woes now go far beyond loose mortgage lending. You can’t spend $3 trillion — yes, $3 trillion — on a failed war abroad and not feel the pain at home.”
 – Linda J. Bilmes and Joseph E. Stiglitz, The Washington Post.
“First, the facts. Nearly the entire deficit for this year and those projected into the near and medium terms are the result of three things: the ongoing wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, the Bush tax cuts and the recession. The solution to our fiscal situation is: end the wars…” 
 – Christopher Hayes, The Nation.
The correct answer to my question, according to the Congressional Budget Office, is $709 billion. The Iraq War cost $709 billion. Why Carville, Bilmes, and Nobel-winning economist Stiglitz thought the answer was $3 trillion is anybody’s guess. But what’s a 323% error among friends?

The CBO breaks that cost down over the eight calendar years of 2003-2010. Below is a picture of federal deficits over those years with and without Iraq spending. Click here to see picture and continue reading from American Thinker.

 


 

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