The U.S. war in Iraq has cost $1.7 trillion with an additional $490 billion in benefits owed to war veterans, expenses that could grow to more than $6 trillion over the next four decades counting interest, a study released on Thursday said.

The war has killed at least 134,000 Iraqi civilians and may have contributed to the deaths of as many as four times that number, according to the Costs of War Project by the Watson Institute for International Studies at Brown University.

When security forces, insurgents, journalists and humanitarian workers were included, the war’s death toll rose to an estimated 176,000 to 189,000, the study said.



  1. Taxed Enough Already Dude says:

    By the way, its estimated the total cost + unpaid benefits will exceed 6 Trillion over the next decade.

    What a waste.

    What a monumental failure in logic, common sense. And its being replicated every day by Obama…

    Soon a two front war with Korea and Iran at a minimum…no doubt others will engage us, seeking to overwhelm us as the fiat money goes boom.

    • Dallas says:

      You are partially responsible for voting for Bush who added 3 Trillion of that. Shame on you.

      How do you plan on explaining your failure and partial responsibility for the crushing debt you have placed on your family’s next generation? Do you ignore that topic when it comes up?

      • pedro says:

        Yes, he ignores it just as you ignore your messiah’s

        Sheeple by any other name

      • Guyver says:

        How do you plan on explaining your failure and partial responsibility for the crushing debt you have placed on your family’s next generation? Do you ignore that topic when it comes up?

        As opposed to Obama outspending 8 years of the Iraq War in his first two years in office?

        Obama criticized Bush for so much out of control spending and what did Obama do when he got into office? He puts it into overdrive. Hypocrite.

        Funny how you talk about responsibility when Obama is the poster child for taking none.

        • bobbo, the pragmatic existential evangelical anti-theist and Jr Nobel Prize Winner in Economics fan boi says:

          McGuyver–this is just my impression but I’d wager the majority of qualified economists think that the stimulus spending should have been twice as big as Obama got thru of which only 1/3 was actual stimulus, the other 1/3 being tax breaks and the last 1/3 being pork==which does have a minor stimulus effect but not the job building/new tech/infrastructure that all the experts talk about.

          How much time and money do you think was the minimum responsible to reverse the GIANT SUCKING HOLE in our economy that BushtheRetard created with his unfunded wars, pharmacy benefits, and tax cuts?

          Its true==we can’t Blame Bush for Obama being born in Kenya…but as Bush tried to take credit for the killing of Bin Laden…isn’t BushtheRetard AS A MATTER OF FACT directly responsible for so much of what Obama has had to clean up????

          Establish your bona fides before you are even given scant notice on whatever notions you have about Obama and Keynesian PROVEN economic theory……… will ya?

          • So what says:

            The New New Deal by Michael Grunwald. Yes the did on both sides the republican house saw things differently. They placed multiple requirements on the stimulus and when they received them they voted against it anyway.

        • The0ne says:

          Boobo already said what I wanted to say but I was just thinking to myself after reading your comment…”wow, there are sure a lot of people out there that are either too stupid or…no that’s about it.”

          How the fck do you stupid people go on living…nevermind, it’s most likely because you live without knowing.

      • TaxedEnoughAlready says:

        I accept the blame. You should also.

        I only point out, such destroyers of our country wouldn’t rise to power if God were still blessing this country.

        • orchidcup says:

          And if the prophet be deceived when he hath spoken a thing, I the LORD have deceived that prophet, and I will stretch out my hand upon him, and will destroy him from the midst of my people Israel.

          – Ezekiel 14:9

  2. Uncle Patso says:

    “Was It Worth The Cost?”

    No.

    Should have done it after Kuwait, or not at all.

    • Rick says:

      We should have left Kuwait alone too. It was their fault for angering Saddam by slant drilling his oil fields.
      Let muslim wars be fought by muslims.

  3. t0llyb0ng says:

    airborne ordinance would be ordnance.

    countryside, halfway, pinhead & warlords are all one word.

    It was worth it to Prick Cheney.  He’s real pleased with himself.

    Saddam had Iraq all bottled up for us.  We should have left that arrangement be.  Sure, it was an ugly little bottle for the citizenry to be cooped up in, but that was none of our damn business.

    Invading Afghanistan without an exit strategy was nincompoopery of the highest order.

    • bobbo, the pragmatic existential evangelical anti-theist and Jr History Nut says:

      One step Higher: winning the war and not leaving whether a plan existed or not.

      Golden opportunity and then as time passed all the Chicken Hawk leaders in and out of the military rathered to squarder lives and money rather than admit they had stepped in it. So……you make up a date some time off like “End of 2013″ which has no more justification to it than “Right Now” and when you finally leave, then you say it was according to plan.

      WhaddabunchofBS. Any yet that is our Leadership from Top to Bottom. Puke and Dumbo. Obama got elected in large part by being anti-stupidwar, then he won and sold out. I gave my reason why earlier. That boy ain’t stupid, he’s not pro war—-connect the dots.

      And yes—Cheney retires with Millions from Halliburton. More dots===practically on top of one another.

  4. Ken says:

    The part where Bush was in charge was not worth it. He was horrible and evil and blah blah blah. Now that Obama, the greatest president, no, the greatest *man* since Jesus, is in charge, every penny spent since the day he took office has been worth it.

  5. Anonymous Coward says:

    Of that $1.7 trillion, how much would have been spent by the USA in any event if those same forces had instead stayed on US soil at their bases doing normal military training during that time?

    The US military is NOT cheap to operate even when doing nothing in particular beyond normal training exercises in the US mainland.

    Besides, if we didn’t occasionally attack other countries, how could we use the military recruiting slogan, “Travel the world. Meet new peoples. Then kill them and blow their shit up.”? ;)

  6. Gildersleeve says:

    Until someone can explain what the world gained out of it (especially why it hasn’t resulted in cheaper oil, although that would still not justify it), you have to say no, it wasn’t worth it. But, I don’t think we’re *supposed* to know what the explanation is. Maybe our children will know when they’re grown. But not us.

  7. Cassandra says:

    Mistakes were made. I wholly agreed w/that truth…

    - Katherine Harris the Grotesque
    - SCOTUS’ awarding of the Presidency
    - The watch dogs that allowed 9/11
    - Tora Bora
    - The Invasion of Iraq w/Colon Powell’s compliance
    - Creation of Homeland Security

    …and on and on and on.

    I could EASILY blame W & Co. (They didn’t call him ‘Dick’ for no reason) but We are the People. Where were We? Huddled in our bubble, guarded w/vicious finger-pointing.

    Our world is in a swirl. W or Obama – WTF? Being right isn’t stopping the wrong.

    Maybe we should learn by the past. Get a clue from our Ancestors and Forefathers. Learn from the stinging Education from acidulous past mistakes. Learn to make decent decisions for the Future of US and our children. Perhaps escape the political philosophies and realize that there is NO ONE WAY to think or act. Conciliation and compromise are hallmarks of this country, this life and ultimately our happiness.

    To know that We are not going to get out of this unless We get together. A House divided can not stand.

    that’s the forecast…and now over to sports..

  8. Hey Zeus! says:

    Was it worth the cost? NO! And not just no, but HELL NO!!!

    Let’s also not forget the LIVING victims too.

    We can play could-have would-have should-have scenarios all day long. But in the end all that ever happened was a tragic attack on some New York City landmarks resulting in a catastrophic loss of some pretty good people. Not much different than what our own negligence might have caused given our own breed of domestic terrorists or even just a busted gas line! (And still, I see no one wanting to ban airplanes.)

    This whole mess should never have escalated into a nebulous war that still has no end in sight. Troops never should have been sent to Iraq or Afghanistan unless those countries were gearing up to send their troops to the U.S.

    Our troops are clearly reserved for DEFENSE of our country – not it’s PROMOTION! And all of us seem to have lost sight of that fact.

    Some say we did it for the oil while others say we did it for more covert reasons like taking back a Stargate (yes! it’s an actual and somewhat credible claim). Some even say we had to do it so we wouldn’t look weak. But it’s all bullshit. And now, even more good men and women are dead. And for what? A dead religious zealot who had too much money who wasn’t even in either of the countries we attacked?!

    I blame religion for the entire mess the world is in. I particularly blame people like the Pope and Jack Van Impe for NOT preaching more TOLERANCE!

    But then just reading this blog and I’m reminded that those people may not really be the problem. They may only be symptoms of a much bigger problem – American culture really is arrogant!

  9. noname says:

    Silly people.

    It depends on who you ask!

    Remember this is AMERICA, where it’s ONLY the number votes that you can buy that count!!

    If you ask the 99%, the answer is NO!

    If you ask the 1%, the answer is Yes, but hell Yes there is MONEY to be MADE!!!

    Consider the 10 companies profiting the most from war::

    10. United Technologies (UTX) — aircraft, electronics, engines
    Arm sales: $11.6 billion, total sales: $58.2 billion
    Gross profit: $5.3 billion, total workforce: 199,900

    9. L-3 Communications (LLL) — electronics
    Arm sales: $12.5 billion, total sales: $15.2 billion
    Gross profit: $956 million, total workforce: 61,000

    8. Finmeccanica — aircraft, artillery, engines, electronics, vehicles and missiles
    Arms sales, $14.6 billion, total sales: $24.1 billion
    Gross profit: $ -3.2 billion, total workforce: 70,470

    7. EADS — aircraft, electronics, missiles and space
    Arm sales: $16.4 billion, total sales: $68.3 billion
    Gross profit: $1.4 billion, total workforce: 133,120

    6. Northrop Grumman (NOC) — aircraft, electronics, missiles, ships, space
    Arm sales: $21.4 billion, total sales: $26.4 billion
    Gross profit: $2.1 billion, total workforce: 72,500

    5. Raytheon (RTN) — electronics, missiles
    Arm sales: $22.5 billion, total sales: $24.9 billion
    Gross profit: $1.9 billion, total workforce: 71,000

    4. General Dynamics (GD) — artillery, electronics, vehicles, small arms, ships
    Arm sales: $23.8 billion, total sales: $32.7 billion
    Gross profit: $2.5 billion, total workforce: 95,100

    3. BAE Systems — aircraft, artillery, electronics, vehicles, missiles, ships
    Arm sales: $29.2 billion, total sales: $30.7 billion
    Gross profit: $2.3 billion, total workforce: 93,500

    2. Boeing (BA) — aircraft, electronics, missiles, space
    Arm sales: $31.8 billion, total sales: $68.7 billion
    Gross profit: $4 billion, total workforce: 171,700

    Also Boeing, received a $30 billion contract from the Pentagon to build 179 airborne tankers, got a $124 million refund from the IRS last year.

    1. Lockheed Martin (LMT) — aircraft, electronics, missiles, space
    Arm sales:$36.3 billion, total sales: $46.5 billion
    Gross profit: $2.7 billion, total workforce, 123,000

    And CONSIDER the companies that TAKE, TAKE and only TAKE then GIVE nothing back AND pay NO TAXES!!!

    Exxon Mobil made $19 billion in profits in 2009. Exxon not only paid no federal income taxes, it actually received a $156 million rebate from the IRS,

    General Electric made $26 billion in profits in the United States over the past five years and, thanks to clever use of loopholes, paid no taxes.

    Chevron received a $19 million refund from the IRS last year after it made $10 billion in profits in 2009.

    Valero Energy, the 25th largest company in America with $68 billion in sales last year, received a $157 million tax refund check from the IRS and, over the past three years, received a $134 million tax break from the oil and gas manufacturing tax deduction.

    Goldman Sachs in 2008 only paid 1.1 percent of its income in taxes even though it earned a profit of $2.3 billion and received an almost $800 billion from the Federal Reserve and U.S. Treasury Department.

    ConocoPhillips, the fifth largest oil company in the United States, made $16 billion in profits from 2006 through 2009, but received $451 million in tax breaks through the oil and gas manufacturing deduction.

    • orchidcup says:

      I worked for ConocoPhillips as a geologist subcontractor for several years.

      The oil and gas industry may be the number one employer of human resources that are former convicted felons and illiterate high school dropouts.

      ConocoPhillips is providing a public service by keeping the slaves busy and distracted so they don’t rape little kids and vote for Democrats.

      They deserve a tax break. Why should the wealthiest persons in the country carry the burden of taxation when their human resources are earning a living wage?

      Let them eat cake.

      • CrankyGeeksFan says:

        Wal-Mart is the largest private employer in the U.S. I try not to shop their. Some of their employees just look bombed out especially the overnight stocking shift (at the Wal-Mart near me, at least).

        That & other large retail & grocery store chains along with fast food restaurants are large employers of the “slaves” that you mention. The oil & gas industry jobs pay higher though. Still, what noname is writing about is the overall bottom line of these companies that should be paying a positive tax not getting money back – a negative tax. Also, look at how much these companies get from the federal government.

  10. gs says:

    We need to stop waging these wars and finally do something sensible like no wars with North korea and Iran and instead we need to immediatly divert military production and R&D spending world wide (we need new treaties like what happened after WWI where all navies were essentialy scrapped, reduced by half) and we need to put some of this money into the development of advanced nanotechnologies (assemblers, disassemblers, relicators, medial nanotech) so we can have our own manufacturing base, we can cure people of any disease process, we can make old people young again, by using medical nanotech to fix and repair all our cells……if we don’t do this, most of the baby boomers llok like they are going to retire in povery, most people are going to work all thier lives (no retirement), most of the problems in the world boil down to scacity of items (how capitalism works). We have created a system in North America where we have this huge military machine/culture that essentialy is the only employer/manufacturer left in North America, no wonder we wage so many wars…China, India are arming for future wars, we have to break the cycle or die/starve in future conflicts when we could be building a great future using nanotech!!

    • orchidcup says:

      Nanotech will be developed into a sophisticated weapons technology that mimics a bacteria or virus pandemic that targets a narrow field of DNA profiles.

      Entire classes or groups of people can be annihilated efficiently without collateral damage and it will look like an Ebola outbreak.

      The future of nanotechnology is bright.

    • So what says:

      The direct result of those treaties following WWI was WWII.

      • Rick says:

        Hitler was the cause of WWII, not the treaty. All you need is one psychotic man with ambition…

        We elected ours in 2000.

  11. orchidcup says:

    Each United States service member who has died in Iraq or Afghanistan and been identified by the DoD:

    Faces of the Dead

    This is a photo record of the loss of human resources.

  12. CrankyGeeksFan says:

    There was no Al-Qaida in Iraq before the invasion in 2003.

    Libya which still cost a few billion dollars didn’t have anywhere near the number of extremists it would get.

    In Syria, Al-Qaida is among the strongest rebel groups.

    Is the U.S. following the problem or leading the problem.

    • noname says:

      Neither, it’s creating the problem!

      That’s what paranoids do, imagine then create problems from nothing! Their illness creates delusions from a guilty & corrupt conscience!

      You can’t tell me that Nixon, Dick Chenney, Janet Napolitano or the prosecutors investigating Reddit co-founder Aaron Swartz … are not sickly paranoid!

      Our government sees plots in every window, it cannot focus its efforts into productively leading people! We the people are becoming fearful of our now paranoid, corrupt government!

      Orwellian politics of gerrymandering and insider money influences had limited effective people participation in an active democracy.

      Democracy is a needy and attention demanding system! If we become too busy working, now that every household member has to work to survive, what time and attention do we have left to give to our self-government?

      Our employers have now become our overlords. They have become too big to fail. Bigger than our government. Our employer now calls the shots in Washington.

      To be an effective self-governing democracy, requires informed DECISION MAKING by its people! It requires free flowing information systems that don’t disrupt, constrain or corrupt information flows! However, print news is dying, investigative journalism is dying, and a once freewheeling internet is now owned and controlled by elites ….

      Bottom Line, we get the government we deserve! That is the government our founders gave us! They gave us a system that requires active input and not just voting from everyone!

      If we feel we deserve better, then we better “work” at making our government “work” for us and not our employers.

      • bobbo, the pragmatic existential evangelical anti-theist and Jr History Buff says:

        Insightful and well said.

  13. MikeN says:

    Don’t worry, that war is all Bush’s fault. The liberals on this blog assured us that the real war was in Afghanistan and that’s where America’s focus needed to be. Then Obama was elected, and the liberals on this blog revealed that they were lying all along, when they started pushing for withdrawal from Afghanistan.

    • noname says:

      Underwhelming courage, spoken like a true diehard republican Chicken Hawk! A true Dick Chenney disciple!

    • Rick says:

      I do believe Obama killed a certain Osama Bin Laden…

      Time to leave Afghanistan

  14. Rick says:

    The $1,700,000,000,000 could have been spent on a massive alternative energy grid which by now could have made us 100% energy independent and completely immune from any overseas wars involvement.

    But instead we elected BUSH.

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