US War on Terror Costs $8 Trillion and 929,000 Lives: Report

The United States’ global war on terror is estimated to cost about $8 trillion since September 11, according to a report from Brown University’s Costs of War project.

The report includes "future costs for veteran's care, the total budgetary costs and future obligations of the post-9/11 wars."

The report estimates that US operations in Afghanistan and Pakistan have cost $2.3 trillion with another $2.1 trillion spent in Iraq and Syria. Another $355 billion has been spent in other war zones.

The estimate "goes beyond the Pentagon's numbers because the costs of the reaction to 9/11 have rippled through the entire budget,” Dr. Neta Crawford, the co-director of the project, said in a statement.

Because the country cut taxes under George Bush while embarking on two wars, the wars have been largely paid for with debt. The US has already paid $925 billion in interest payments alone.

If the global war on terror immediately ceased, the US would still have $2 trillion in interest payments by 2030 and $6.5 trillion by 2050.

Nearly 1 million lives lost:

The report also estimates that the war on terror has killed between 897,000 and 929,000 people.

That number includes at least 387,072 civilians.

Crawford said this is "likely a vast undercount of the true toll these wars have taken on human life.”

"It's critical we properly account for the vast and varied consequences of the many US wars and counterterror operations since 9/11, as we pause and reflect on all of the lives lost," Crawford said.

The project previously released a report finding that at least 37 million people have been displaced by the war on terror.

Health care for veterans will cost trillions:

Another analysis by the Associated Press found that the US costs for health care, disability, burial, and other costs for about 4 million Afghanistan and Iraq veterans will cost more than $2 trillion.

While most of the vets are still fairly young, that number is expected to peak after 2048.

"What have we truly accomplished in 20 years of post 9/11 wars, and at what price?" Dr. Stephanie Savell, co-director of the Costs of War Project, said in a statement. "Twenty years from now, we'll still be reckoning with the high societal costs of the Afghanistan and Iraq wars - long after US forces are gone."


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