The Cost of War

Bonnie Kristian
Jan 2, 2013 at 5:01 PM

I’m researching some of the costs of America’s wars since 2001 for a new YAL project today. Most of this I’ve read about before—it’s not like I’m unfamiliar with most of the data. But all put together, it’s pretty heart-breaking. Here’s a sampling:


  • $6 trillion+: The final costs of Iraq and Afghanistan
  • $16 trillion: The national debt
  • $720 million: The price of one day at war in Iraq
  • $300 million: One day of war in Afghanistan
  • $132 billion and growing: Annual Dep’t of Veterans Affairs budget
  • $50 billion: What we were told Iraq would cost


  • Warrantless wiretapping
  • Indefinite detention
  • 1.7 billion of our emails read daily
  • Suppression of free speech
  • TSA security theater
  • Assassination of Americans


  • 1 million+ excess deaths in Iraq
  • 7.8 million+ refugees in Iraq
  • 6,518 American soldiers dead in Iraq and Afgh.
  • 16,495 total U.S. military deaths 2001-2010
  • 48,430 Americans wounded in Iraq and Afgh.
  • 1,655 military amputations from battle
  • 300,000 veterans have PTSD
  • 50 civilians killed for every one terrorist

The constant posture of attack our foreign policy takes today simply doesn’t work, and its price is high in dollars, freedom, and lives. If we want a safer and saner America, it’s time to end the wars.

[Sources include: 123456789.]

Its really a big loss of money, $6 trillion is such a huge amount.I can't believe America has thrown such a big money in wars.

taran's picture

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Davidjohn's picture

If you take the cost of a small war, it is very huge and even that amount can eradicate the poverty by a small percentage from the face of earth. It is shame to see that a whole lot quality equipment and spray of money is wasted for some small achievements, which actually won’t be helping the poor anyways. 

Kevinosbern's picture