Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Billions and billions and billions...

Some interesting news today in the WaPo.
'Hidden Costs' Double Price Of Two Wars

The economic costs to the United States of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan so far total approximately $1.5 trillion, according to a new study by congressional Democrats that estimates the conflicts' "hidden costs"-- including higher oil prices, the expense of treating wounded veterans and interest payments on the money borrowed to pay for the wars.

That amount is nearly double the $804 billion the White House has spent or requested to wage these wars through 2008, according to the Democratic staff of Congress's Joint Economic Committee. Its report, titled "The Hidden Costs of the Iraq War," estimates that the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have thus far cost the average U.S. family of four more than $20,000.

Meanwhile, the wingnuts are flustered because more people aren’t acknowledging that the surge has been a success in light of the fewer number of deaths this past month in Iraq. Nevermind that there has still been little to no progress towards the kind of reconciliation necessary to establish any kind of long-term government solution for the debacle over there. I’m thrilled that there are fewer deaths, but since we should have been out of there several years ago anyway it is not something I’m going to celebrate as some kind of vindication of Bush’s policies.
The Iraq war was a disaster and no matter what happens from this point forward that fact will not change. We’ve already spent too much in blood and tax dollars for even the rosiest outcome to compensate. No matter what happens at this point, it was NOT worth it.

At this point, Iraq is like a money-losing salvage operation with the sole purpose of saving face for Bush and Republicans. To claim now that the Iraq invasion was a success would be like someone going out and using modern technology to raise the Titanic from the bottom of the ocean and then sailing it back to England and claiming the voyage was not a disaster after all.

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