The US wars in Afghanistan and Iraq will cost American taxpayers $4 trillion to $6 trillion in the long run, according to a new study by the Harvard University.
The report that was released on Thursday has taken into account the medical care of injured war veterans and expensive repairs to US military force worn out by over a decade of fighting,The Washington Postreported. Linda J. Bilmes, a public policy professor, wrote in the report, “As a consequence of these wartime spending choices, the United States will face constraints in funding investments in personnel and diplomacy, research and development and new military initiatives. ”
“The legacy of decisions taken during the Iraq and Afghanistan wars will dominate future federal budgets for decades to come, ” Bilmes noted.
She said that years of war in Iraq and Afghanistan have already cost Washington $2 trillion, which is only a fraction of the ultimate price tag. Adding to costs will be the interest Washington will have to pay for borrowing to fund the wars, Bilmes stated. In 2003, the US and Britain invaded Iraq in blatant violation of international law and under the pretext of finding weapons of mass destruction. But no such weapons were ever found in Iraq. More than one million Iraqis were killed as the result of the US-led invasion and subsequent occupation of the country, according to the California-based investigative organization Project Censored. In 2001, the US and its allies invaded Afghanistan as part of Washington’s so-called war on terror. The offensive removed the Taliban regime from power, but insecurity continues to rise across Afghanistan, despite the presence of about over 100,000 US-led troops. According to the United Nations, thousands of Afghan civilians have died and hundreds of thousands more displaced during a more than 11-year long war.